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Feeding the Dead – Ancestor Worship in Ancient India - Oxford Scholarship Online
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Feeding the Dead: Ancestor Worship in Ancient India

Matthew R. Sayers


Despite strong associations with the concept of reincarnation, Hinduism, and its Vedic antecedents, exhibit a strong tradition of ancestor worship. This book describes the development of the classic form of ancestral rite, the śrāddha, which is still practiced in its contemporary form in India today. The author outlines the process whereby the domestic concern about sustaining one's Ancestors in heaven is incorporated into the Vedic ritual cycle and the codification of the domestic rituals of ancestor worship in the G?hyasātras, the domestic ritual manuals. Central to the process of synthesis ... More

Keywords: śrāddha, ancestor worship, Hinduism, Buddhism, soteriology, India, Vedic religion, sacrifice, ritual, religion

Bibliographic Information

Print publication date: 2013 Print ISBN-13: 9780199917471
Published to Oxford Scholarship Online: September 2013 DOI:10.1093/acprof:oso/9780199917471.001.0001


Affiliations are at time of print publication.

Matthew R. Sayers, author
Lebanon Valley College