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Idol Worship In Vedas

There are numerous references in Vedic texts that suggest that the concept of murti or idol worship, or the veneration of deities through physical representations, existed in ancient Vedic culture. Let's delve deeper into some of these references:

Rig Veda 8.29: This hymn describes the attributes, forms, and weapons of various gods, indicating a detailed understanding and visualization of divine figures. The mention of Sage Tvasta as a Deva Shilpi further implies the existence of skilled artisans who could translate these visions into physical forms.

Vajasaneyi Samhita (1.15.16): Describing the Sun as 'hiranyapani' ('one with a golden hand'), this reference suggests a symbolic representation of celestial bodies, possibly through crafted images or symbols.

Kathaka Samhita (22.11): The mention of Sage Devala, who lived by preparing images, indicates the practice of creating physical representations for worship or ritual purposes.

Sama Veda (1.9.5): The reference to an image in this Veda further supports the notion of using physical representations in religious rites or practices.

Atharva Veda (2.2.2): The mention of a temple indicates the existence of dedicated sacred spaces for worship, potentially housing these images or idols.

Shadvimsha Brahmana (5.10), Taittiriya Brahmana, and Taittiriya Aranyaka: These texts not only mention the existence of images of gods but also refer to the craftsmen or sculptors responsible for creating them, such as Tvasta.

Bodhayana Grihya Sutras 3.7: By the time of the Srauta Sutras and grihya sutras, which are texts dealing with rituals and domestic ceremonies, the worship of deities through images in temples appears to have been well-established.

These references collectively indicate that the practice of idol worship was not only present but also ingrained in Vedic society, with skilled artisans playing a crucial role in crafting representations of divine beings for worship and reverence.