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お願いします!続き  A person who could call the deities to sacrifice was a very special person indeed.These were the Brahmin teachers.In the Vedic books called the Upanishads,they teach and talk bbout the Ultimate Supreme Being,called Brahman.Many religious people believed that the Ultimate Supreme Being pervaded all of creation.According to the Upanishads,“The finest essence here-that constitutes the self of this whole world; that is the truth; that is the self.And that's how you are....”Knowledge of Brahman made one enlightened and stopped the endless cycle of death and rebirth.But even if you were a Brahmin,there were no guarantees that you would be enlightened.  Being good was not enough to be reincarnated as a human,never mind to reach the level of Brahman.You also had to purify yourself through special lituals.People tried to wash away the sins that they committed during their life through rituals such as bathing in sacred rivers,singing hymns to the deities,giving alms to the poor and to charitable organizatioms,and taking care of old and weak animals as well as people.They gave away all their wealth,devoted themselves to meditation, and made pilgrimages to sacred places.  Many of these sacred places were found along the shores of India's Ganga River.Just as the Indus Valley civilization grew from the life-giving waters of the Indus and Saraswati Rivers,so the Brahmanical religion grew up along the banks of the Ganga River.The people of ancient South Asia thought of the river as a beautiful deity.According to the Ramayama,“[The]Ganga[river is]flowing along the valley,coming down from the Himalayas,carrying within her the essence of rare herbs and elements found on her way.She courses through many a kingdom,and every inch of the ground she touches becomes holy.”


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 捧げものに神を呼ぶことができる人は、本当に非常に特別な人でした。 これらは、バラモンの先生でした。 ウパニシャドと呼ばれているベーダの本の中で、彼らは教え、ブラフマンと呼ばれる最高神について話します。多くの敬虔な人々は、最高神が万物に行き渡っていると信じていました。ウパニシャドによると、「現世の最も優れた本質 ― それはこの全世界の自我を構成する; それは真理である;それは自我である。 そして、その様にあなたは存在する ....」ブラフマンについて知ると、人は悟りを開き、死と再生の果てしない輪廻が止まりました。 しかし、たとえあなたがバラモンであったとしても、あなたが悟りを開く保証はありませんでした。  善であることは人間として生まれ変わるのに十分ではありませんでしたし、決してバラモンのレベルに達する精神でもありませんでした。あなたは、さらに、特別の儀式によってあなた自身を浄化しなければなりませんでした。人々は、儀式によって生涯で犯した罪を洗い流そうとしました、例えば、聖なる川で沐浴したり、神に賛歌を歌ったり、貧しい人々や慈善団体に施し物をしたり、人々ばかりでなく年を取って弱くなった動物の世話をしたりしたのです。彼らはすべての富を手放し、瞑想に専念し、聖地へ巡礼しました。  これらの聖地の多くは、インドのガンガ川の岸に沿って見つかりました。 インダス文明がインダス川とサラスワティー川の命を与える水から発達したのと丁度同じように、ブラフマンの宗教もガンガ川の岸に沿って発達しました。古代の南アジアの人々は、川を美しい神とみなしました。 ラーマヤーナによれば、「ガンガ川は渓谷に沿って流れ、ヒマラヤ山脈より下り、その中に途中で見つかる珍しいハーブのエキスや元素を運ぶ。川は多くの王国を流れ、川が触れる土地の隅から隅までが神聖になる。」





  • 日本語訳を!c13-6

    お願いします!続き  Back among mere mortals,the Brahmin men were taught the sacred scriptures and conducted sacrifices. And that was the main job they were born to do. In early Vedic times,every kind of responsibility was delegated to a particular group,or varna.For example,people of the Kshatriya group owned land,fought wars,and ran the government.The members of the Vaishya varna became craftsmen and traders.The Shudra group worked the land,swept the streets,emptied the latrines,and collected garbage and dumped it outside the city.Although at first it was possible for people to move from one varna to another,changing places was discouraged,and after about 1000 BCE,it was not allowed at all.  Based on what varna you were born into,your career was decided for you.Any say you had in the matter was narrowed even further by whether you were a boy or a girl.Brahmin boys learned the rituals and scriptures that their fathers,brothers,and uncles did.Brahmin girls and women fed and clothed their families and cared for the young,the elderly,and the sick.They also performed religious rituals,especially the daily worship of the female deity who protects the home and family.Many aspects of women's worship was not part of the early Vedic scriptures-it was handed down from mother to daughter from very ancient times.  We don't know very much about women and men from the lower classes,because the records we have,the Vedas,the Mahabharata,and the Ramayana,are about the upper classes.Many scholars believe that the need to earn a living meant that men and women worked together more equally among the other classes than they did among the Brahmins.Non-Brahmin women were allowed and even encouraged to get an education and sometimes were trained in warfare.

  • 日本語訳を!c11-1

    お願いします!  Imagine you could watch the history of the world as a super-fast movie shot from outer space.If you were watching the South Asian subcontinent,things would look about the same from about 3000 to 2000 BCE with cities,villages,and crops sprinkled throughout the Indus Valley.But about 2000 BCE,the scene would start to change dramatically.Some of the old settlements along what used to be the Saraswati River would disappear as the once-great river dried up.Then you would see spaces opening up in the jungles along the Yamuna and Ganga River valley as new communities moved in.These communities cut down and burned trees to make room for towns,cities,and fields of summer crops watered by the monsoon,such as rice and millet.  We know a lot more about these new communities than we do about the Harappans because we have their scriptures,called the Vedas.The Vedas are a collection of hymns,narratives,and religious instructions in the Sanskrit language.Sanskrit was not written down at first ,and the Vedas were only passed on through memorizatiom.How much can you memorize? Could you memorize a poem? A story? How about a whole book? How about memorizing a whole book by repeating back what your teacher tells you,without having words to look at? How about a whole lot of books? The Vedas were so important that students spent 10,15, or even 20 years studying and memorizing them so that they would not be lost from generation to generation.Young boys who belonged to a class of people called Brahmin had to learn the alphabet of the sacred language of Sanskrit before they could begin to learn the hundreds of sacred texts in the Vedas.

  • 日本語訳を!c10-4

    お願いします!続き After the discovery of some unburied skeletons on the highest,and therefore latest,street levels at Mohenjo Daro,some scholars assumed that the forts that Indra was destroying were the walled cities of the Indus Valley.But the Late Harappan cities were never destroyed by warfare,and there is no evidence of large groups of people coming from outside South Asia.Historians believe that the mysterious skeletons were people who died from contagious diseases.They were left unburied in abandoned parts of the city so they would not infect the grave diggers. So what happened around 1900 BCE? For many years,historians believed that invaders called Aryans poured into the Indus Valley and,with the help of the horse and bronze or iron weapons,destroyed the Late Harappan civilization. But archaeologists can't find evidence of major warfare,and the body types of the people living in the Indus Valley did not change during this time period.More likely,the disappearing Saraswati River stqained the Late Harappan way of life past the breaking point.Satellite photos of the dried riverbed and excavations along its banks show that the river was huge at one time,almost five miles across.As old ways of living and trade broke down,the people of the Indus Valley began to look around for other ways to stay alive.People from the countryside and highlands who spoke the Indo-Aryan language,people who had known amd traded with the Harappans for many years,became more powerful over time until they could challenge the Harappans' power.

  • 日本語訳を!c13-1

    お願いします!  “All creatures from Brahma to the small insect have to face the result of their deeds,”said the Vedic deity Vishnu. If you were a student who never practiced your Vedas,or a farmer who let your land go to seed,or a craftsman who sold leaky pots,your parents or your wife or your customers would probably get angry with you.But that's not all.What Vishnu meant was that you could pay in your next life for not meeting your duties in this one.Your actions had results,which were called karma.Many ancient South Asians believed that most people's souls came back into the world after they died,and not necessarily in a human body.  On the other hand,if you were especially good,you could come back as a Brahmin.Brahmins were considered to be the most pure of all human beings.Only they knew the hymns and rituals from the Vedas to call the deities to the fire sacrifice.They knew how to start a fire with a bow drill and,once that fire was started,how to offer sacrificed animals and clarified butter(or“ghee”)to the flames as they chanted special hymns.  By around 1000 BCE,the Vedic rituals practiced by Brahmins began to change.Earlier traditions of the Indus civilization and other local beliefs began to creep back into use.The Brahmins began to use Harappan-style conch-shell ladles to pour sacrifices and blow Harappan-style conch shells to call the deities.They began to practice the ancient Harappan discipline of yoga and decorate the floors where they performed rituals with sacred designs called mandalas,made out of powdered conch shells and rice powder.

  • 日本語訳を!c12-2

    お願いします!続き  Without faith in dharma,men fail to reach me,Arjuna;they return to the cycle of death and rebirth.  Despite Krishna's advice,Arjuna holds back at a crucial moment of the battle.The day is saved when Krishna jumps into the fray and sends his spinning chakra,a flat disk with a razor-sharp edge,slicing through the advancing army of the Kauravas.The poem ends with the words:  Where Krishna is lord of discipline and Arjuna is the archer,there do fortune,victory,abundance,and morality exist,so I think.  The Mahabharata is an exciting narative,a beautiful poem,and an important source of religious teaching.But it is also a historical document that tells us a lot about the Vedic communities at the end of the Vedic Era.For example,in the final battle,the warriors ride in magnificent chariots covered with gold and gems,with tinkling bells and iron-rimmed wheels,calling each other to battle with trumpets made of conch shells.“Tumult echoed through heaven and earth,”says the Mahabharata.That passage tells us that the Vedic people had horses and chariots,that their artisans knew how to work with iron and gold,and that they had reestablished trade with the coastal villages that collected conch shells.The place names in the poem also remind us that India was being settled along the Ganga and Yamuna River valleys and in the Punjaa.Krishna,for example,was from the city of Mathura,on the Yamuna,while the Kaurava brothers were from the city of Hastinapura,on the Ganga.

  • 日本語訳を!c14-3

    お願いします!  Both men and women who admired Mahavira and his teachings left their families and became monks and nuns.In fact,when Mahavira died,more than twice as many nuns as monks followed his teachings.Even today,women play an important role in Jain traditions.As mothers,they teach children how to behave and how to live a good life by not killing,stealing,or lying.Jain nuns meditate and go on journeys called pilgrimages to sacred places,take care of sacred scriptures,and teach others about the way to achieve Enlightenment.  All Jains vow not to kill any living thing.This means that Jains cannot be farmers,because they would have to kill insects that destroy plants and they would kill worms when plowing the fields.Jains do not raise animals because they would have to kill the lice,vermin,and germs that livestock often suffer from.They can't be lumberjacks,because that line of work would mean that by cutting down trees they would be killing insects and hurting animals that live in the trees.  Most Jains who were not monks and nuns were traders,bankers,or craftspeople who made things such as jewelry and cloth.The rich Jain merchants became patrons of the arts and paid for the construction of magnificent temples and monasteries.Many of the teachings of famous monks and nuns were written on palm leaves or painted onto birch-bark manuscripts and collected in great libraries.

  • 日本語訳を!c10-1

    お願いします! “Like a bronze city,surpassing all other rivers and waters,pure in her course from the mountains to the sea”is how the Saraswati River is described in ancient South Asian scripture called the Rig Veda.And yet 100 years ago,historians didn't know anything about the river.That's because in about 1900 BCE,the Saraswati River was beginning to dry up.What was a farmer to do? During the Late Harappan period,from 1900 to 1,000 BCE,many people,confused and frightened by the change in the land they knew so well and desperate for food and water,packed up what was left of their shriveled farms and moved to the cities on the Indus and Ravi Rivers or new farmlands in the Ganga plain. Soon the countryside was no longer good for farmers because the rivers had dried up.Even more people poured into the cities,which were full to overflowing.Looking for safety and shelter,the new immigrants built shacks anywhere they could find a corner find a corner to call their own.When the cornerr were gone,they started building shacks in the middle of the street.The government could not keep up with the overcrowding,and garbage began to build up in the streets. At about the same time,just after 1900 BCE,merchants stopped traveling to distant places to find precious goods such as turquoise,lapis lazuli,and carnelian to bring to the city to sell.Craftsmen began making glassy faience that looked like turquoise,lapis lazuli,and red carnelian for customers who could no longer find the real thing.These lookalikes were so good that they sometimes fooled even modern archaeologists until the“stones”were examined under a microscope.In time the craftmen learned how to make true glass that could be colored the reddish brown of carnelian and the black and white of agates,the stone that marbles are made from.

  • 日本語訳を!c14-7

    お願いします!  By the third century BCE,even kings and queens were beginning to adopt the simple ways of Buddhism.In about 261 BCE,Emperor Ashoka,ruler of the Mauryan empire in India,converted to Buddhism and made it the state religion of his empire.He had stone columns and tablets carved with Buddhist ideas,such as“In India the deities who formerly did not mix with men now do so.This is the result of effort,and may be obtained not only by the great,but even by the small,through effort-thus they ay even easily win heaven.”Ashoka also built stupas,dome-shaped burial monuments,to house portions of the Buddha's ashes.  With Ashoka's help,Buddhism spread throughout the subcontinent and beyond,along the major sea and overland trade routes.Some traditions say that Ashoka's son became a monk and his father sent him as a missionary to Sri Lanka,an island off the coast of India.More missionaries traveled to Central Asia,Tibet and China,as well as Southeast Asia,where they converted many people to the gentle teachings of the Buddha.

  • 日本語訳を!c10-3

    お願いします!続き The way that people buried their dead changed during the Late Harappan times.At first,they changed only the way they placed the bodies,which were buried on their side and oriented northeast to southwest instead of north and south.The dead were buried with pottery and occasionally ornaments.Later,burial practices really changed.The dead body was left in the open and exposed to animals and insects until only the bones were left.Later,people collected the bones of the dead and put them into a large painted jar that was buried along with smaller pots and offerings,The pottery from the earlier burials looked like Harappan pottery-now the urns used for pot burials had very different painted designs.Changing religious ideas during a difficult time could have been the cause of these new styles.Or,a new people might have introduced them. By 1200 BCE,weapons and tools made of iron began to appear.By 600 BCE,iron was common.Although scholars used to think the South Asians learned how to make iron from people in Turkey,they now believe South Asians discovered it for themselves. And does the appearance of iron weapons mean that people were fighting wars in South Asia? Scriptures called the Rig Veda,which probably come from this time although they weren't written down until several hundred years later,describe forests being cut down as well as the rain and thunder deity Indus destroying forts and conquering his enemies: With all-outstripping chariot-wheel,O Indra,thou far-famed,hast overthrown the twice ten kings of men... Thou goest on from fight to fight intrepidly,destroying castle after castle here witg strength.

  • 日本語訳を!c10-5

    お願いします!続き Between about 1500 and 600 BCE,Indo-Aryan speakers gained power and conquered areas in the Ganga River valley beyond the lands that the Harappans once controlled.Cave paintings from Central India show them overwhelming the local pepole with their horses,chariots,and iron weapons.The language and traditions of people from other regions replaced the old ways of the Harappans,until the Harappans and everything they made-the shining cities,the bustling trade networks,even their language-was lost or buried,forgotten for thousands of years.