What Are Upavedas - Know Their Significance & Origin

There are four main Vedas in Hinduism. They are Rig Veda, Samaveda, Yajurveda and Atharvaveda. However, the knowledge of the Vedas extends to some related supplementary scriptures, which are called the Upavedas.

There is some difference of opinion among the scholars about which are the main Upavedas. The following four are said to be the most universally accepted Upvedas.

The four prominent Upvedas are – Ayurveda, Dhanurveda, Gandharvaved, and Shilpaveda. Now, which Upveda has come out from which Veda — Ayurveda has come out from Rig Veda, Dhanurveda has come out from Yajurveda, Gandharvaved has come out from Samaveda and Shilpaveda has come out from Atharvaveda. However, there is some difference of opinion regarding Rig Veda because as per Charanvyuh, the Upveda of Rig Veda is Ayurveda however as per Sushrut, Ayurveda is the Upaveda of Atharvavsed and not Rig Veda.

Vedas And Their Content

If we delve into Ved, Upaveda, and its various parts, then it’s a huge field. The more we go into it, the more we will want to know. So, let us start with the Vedas:

Rigveda – The Rigveda has 10 mandals,1,028 Suktas and 10,522 mantras.

Yajurveda – Yajurveda has 40 chapters and 1,975 mantras.

Samaveda – It has 27 chapters and a total of 1,875 mantras.

Atharvaveda – It has 20 kandas and 5,977 mantras.

The Parts Of Vedas

If you want proper knowledge of Vedas, then you have to look at its 6 parts. These 6 parts are education, kalpa, grammar, nirukta, chhanda and astrology.


We now know about the parts of the Vedas. Now let us know about its extensions — Yoga, Nyaya, Samkhya, Poorvimamsa, Uttara Mimamsa, and Vaiseshik. These are the six Vedic (Heterodox) schools of Indian Philosophy.

The History Of Ayurveda

According to historians, the oldest Veda in the world is the Rigveda. But there is a lot of ambiguity about its development as there is also evidence of Ayurveda as the oldest one. Some scholars have stated that it came up from 3,000 to 50,000 years before Christ. Ashwini Kumar is considered to be the foremost Acharya of Ayurveda. He had added the head of a goat to the torso of Daksha Prajapati.

Indra had received this knowledge from the Ashwini Kumaras. After this, Indra taught this science to Dhanvantari. The king of Kashi, Divodas is said to be an incarnation of Dhanvantari. Sushruta studied Ayurveda with him. Sushrut learned Ayurveda from him. Besides, the great sage Atri and Bharadwaj are also considered the founders of this scripture.

The Scholars Of Ayurveda

As for the Acharyas of Ayurveda, it has many names. These include Ashwini Kumar, Dhanvantari, Divodas, Nakula, Sahadeva, Arki, Maharishi Chyavan, Sushruta, Charak, Janak, August, Karath, Jajli, Pal, Mercury, Jawal, Maharishi Atri and their 6 disciples (Sheep, Parashar, Agnivesh, Jatukarna, Sirpani, Harit).

More About Ayurveda

Ayurveda is the natural and ancient health system of India. It is formed by linking the two Sanskrit words Ayuh and Veda. Ayuh means age or life and Veda means science, that is, it can be called the science of life.

The Fundamental Principles Of Ayurveda

The teaching of Ayurveda has been imparted orally under the Guru Shishya tradition. Charaka Samhita, Sushruta Samhita, and Ashtanga Hriday are the ancient texts of Ayurveda. These texts describe the effects of earth, water, air, fire, and sky on human beings and their importance for a healthy and happy life. At the same time, Ayurveda treats diseases on the basis of doshas. These three doshas (Tridoshas) are Vata, Pitta, and Kapha. Vata dosha has the predominance of air and sky elements, Pitta dosha has the supremacy of fire element and Kapha dosha has primacy of earth and water.

What Is Dhanurveda?

Well, Dhanurveda, it is the Upveda of Yajurveda. This included archery or military science. In ancient times, there were detailed texts of archery in India. Dhanurveda is also mentioned in ancient Indian texts. For instance, Agnipuran has been described as one of the 18 branches of knowledge. It is also mentioned in the Mahabharata. There is also a separate book called Dhanurveda Samhita.

What Is Gandharvaveda?

Gandharvaveda i.e. musicology, the scripture of music. It describes vowels, rhythm, raga, ragini, etc. The Natya Shastra of Bharata Muni is also its part. A lot of research has also been done in India on the Gandharvaveda. It is said that hearing its shlokas can cure diseases.

What Is Shilpaveda?

As for Shilpaveda, it gives information about artistry. Anything we manufacture comes under the Shilpaveda.


Indeed, Upavedas are a continuation of the Vedas. They are not accidental to the Vedas, on the contrary, they are integral to the Vedas. They are indispensable to the Indian wisdom and civilization.