Indian Literature

Sacred Books of the East

Friedrich_Max_Müller_1974_stamp_of_IndiaThe Sacred Books of the East is a collection of Asian religious texts translated into English under the Editorship of Max Müller between 1879 and 1910. 

V. 1. The Upanishads, pt. 1
Internet Archive: The Upanishads part 1. Chandogya Upanishad. Talavakara Upanishad. Aitareya Upanishad. Kausitaki Upanishad. Vajasaneyi Upanishad. EPUB, MOBI, TXT and PDF formats.

V. 2. Sacred laws of the Aryas, pt. 1
Internet Archive: The Sacred Laws of the Aryas, pt. 1. Âpastamba's Aphorisms on the Sacred Law. Guatama's Institutes of the Sacred Law. EPUB, MOBI, TXT and PDF formats.

V 3. Sacred books of China, pt. 1 
Internet Archive: The Sacred Books of China - The Texts of Confucianism, pt. 1. The Shu King. The Religious Portion of the Shih King. The Hsiao King. EPUB, MOBI, TXT and PDF formats.

V. 4. The Zend-Avesta, pt. 1, The Vendidad
Internet Archive: The Zend-Avesta, pt. 1, The Vendidad, translated by James Darmesteter and L.H. Mills. EPUB, MOBI, TXT and PDF formats.

V. 5. Pahlavi texts, pt. 1
Internet Archive: Pahlavi Texts - The Bundahis-Bahman Yast, and Shayast La-Shayast. EPUB, MOBI, TXT and PDF formats.

V. 6. The Qur'an, pt. 1
Internet Archive: The Qur'an, pt. 1 - Chapters I to XVI. EPUB, MOBI, TXT and PDF formats.

V. 7. The Institutes of Vishnu
Internet Archive: v. 7. The Institutes of Vishnu, translated by Julius Jolly. EPUB, MOBI, TXT and PDF formats.

V. 8. The Bhagavadgita with the Sanattsugtiya and the Anugita
Internet Archive: The Bhagavadgita with the Sanattsugtiya and the Anugita, translated by Kashinath Trimbak Telang.  EPUB, MOBI, TXT and PDF formats.

V. 9. The Qur'an, pt. 2
Internet Archive: v. 9. The Qur'an, pt. 2 - Chapters XVII to CXIV, translated by E.H. Palmer. EPUB, MOBI, TXT and PDF formats.

V. 10. The Dhammapada
Internet Archive: The Dhammapada, translated by F. Max Müller. EPUB, MOBI, TXT and PDF formats.

V. 11. Buddhist Suttas
Internet Archive: Buddhist Suttas, translated by T. W. Rhys Davids. EPUB, MOBI, TXT and PDF formats.

V. 12. The Satapatha-Brahmana, pt. 1
Internet Archive: The Satapatha-Brahmana, pt. 1 - Books I and II, translated by Julius Eggeling. EPUB, MOBI, TXT and PDF formats.

V. 13. Vinaya texts, pt. 1
Internet Archive: Vinaya texts, pt. 1 - The Pattimokkha and The Mahavagga, I-IV, translated by T. W. Rhys Davids and Hermann Oldenberg. EPUB, MOBI, TXT and PDF formats.

V. 14. The sacred laws of the Aryas, pt. 2
Internet Archive: The sacred laws of the Aryas, pt. 2 - Vasishtha and Baudhayana, translated by Georg Buhler. EPUB, MOBI, TXT and PDF formats.

V. 15. The Upanishads, pt. 2
Internet Archive: The Upanishads, pt. 2 - The Katha Upanishad, The Mundaka Upanishad, The Taittiriyaka Upanishad, The Brihadaranyaka Upanishad, The Svetasvatara Upanishad,  The Prasna Upanishad, The Maitrayana-Brahmana Upanishad, translated by F. Max Müller. EPUB, MOBI, TXT and PDF formats.

v. 16. The sacred books of China, pt. 2
Internet Archive: The sacred books of China, pt. 2 - The Yi King, translated by James Legge. EPUB, MOBI, TXT and PDF formats.

V. 17. Vinaya texts, pt. 2
Internet Archive: Vinaya texts, pt. 2 - The Mahavagga, V-X and the Kullavagga, I-III, translated by T. W. Rhys Davids and Hermann Oldenberg. EPUB, MOBI, TXT and PDF formats.

V. 18. Pahlavi texts, pt. 2
Internet Archive: Pahlavi texts, pt. 2 - The Dadistan-I Dinik and the Epistles of Manuskihar, translated by E.W. West. EPUB, MOBI, TXT and PDF formats.

V. 19. The Fo-Sho-Hing-Tsan-King
Internet Archive: The Fo-Sho-Hing-Tsan-King - A Life of the Buddha, translated from Sanskrit to Chinese by Dharmaraksha and from Chinese into English by Samuel Beal. EPUB, MOBI, TXT and PDF formats.

V. 20. Vinaya texts, pt. 3
Internet Archive: Vinaya texts, pt. 3 - The Kullavagga IV-XII, translated by T. W. Rhys Davids and Hermann Oldenberg. EPUB, MOBI, TXT and PDF formats. 

V. 21. Saddharma-Pundarika
Internet Archive: The Saddharma-Pundarika or The Lotus of the True Law, translated by H. Kern. EPUB, MOBI, TXT and PDF formats. 

V. 22. Gaina Sutras, pt. 1
Internet Archive: Gaina Sutras, pt. 1 - The Akaranga Sutra and the Kalpa Sutra, translated by Hermann Jacobi. EPUB, MOBI, TXT and PDF formats. 

V. 23. The Zend-Avesta, pt. 2
Internet Archive: The Zend-Avesta, pt. 2 - The Sirozahs, Yasts and Nyayis, translated by James Darmesteter and L.H. Mills. EPUB, MOBI, TXT and PDF formats.

V. 24. Pahlavi texts, pt. 3
Internet Archive: Pahlavi texts, pt. 3 - The Dinah-I Mainog-I Khirad, The Sikand-gumanik Vigar, The Sad Dar, translated by E.W. West. EPUB, MOBI, TXT and PDF formats.

V. 25. The Laws of Manu
Internet Archive: The Laws of Manu, Translated by G. Buhler. EPUB, MOBI, TXT and PDF formats.

V. 26. Satapatha-Brahmana, pt. 2
Internet Archive: Satapatha-Brahmana, pt. 2 - Books III and IV, translated by Julius Eggeling. EPUB, MOBI, TXT and PDF formats.

V. 27. Sacred Books of China, pt. 3: The Texts of Confucianism
Internet Archive: Sacred Books of China, pt. 3: The Texts of Confucianism - The Li Ki, I-X, translated by James Legge. EPUB, MOBI, TXT and PDF formats.

V. 28. Sacred books of China, pt. 4: The Texts of Confucianism
Internet Archive: Sacred Books of China, pt. 4: The Texts of Confucianism - The Li Ki, XI-XLVI, translated by James Legge. EPUB, MOBI, TXT and PDF formats.

V. 29. The Grihya-sutras, pt. 1: Rules of Vedic Domestic Ceremonies
Internet Archive: The Grihya-sutras, pt. 1 - The Sankhayana-Grihya-Sutra, The Asvalayana-Grihya-Sutra, The Paraskara-Grihya-Sutra and the Khadira-Grihya-Sutra, translated by Hermann Oldenberg. EPUB, MOBI, TXT and PDF formats. 

V. 30. The Grihya-sutras, pt. 2: Rules of Vedic Domestic Ceremonies
Internet Archive: The Grihya-sutras, pt. 2 - The Gobhila-Grihya-Sutra, the Hiranyakesi-Grihya-Sutra and the Apastamba-Grihya-Sutra, translated by Hermann Oldenberg, with Apastamba's Yagna-Paribhasha-Sutras, translated by F. Max Müller. EPUB, MOBI, TXT and PDF formats. 

v. 31. The Zend-Avesta, pt. 3
Internet Archive: The Zend-Avesta, pt. 3. The Yasna, Visparad, Âfrînagân, Gâhs, and miscellaneous fragments, translated by L. H. Mills. EPUB, MOBI, TXT and PDF formats. 

v. 32. Vedic Hymns, pt. 1
Internet Archive: Vedic Hymns, pt. 1. Hymns to the Maruts, Rudra, Vâyu and Vâta, translated by F. Max Müller. EPUB, MOBI, TXT and PDF formats. 

v. 33. The Minor Law Books, pt. 1
Internet Archive: The Minor Law Books, pt. 1. Narada, Brihaspiti, translated by Julius Jolly. EPUB, MOBI, TXT and PDF formats. 

v. 34. The Vedanta-Sutras, pt. 1 
Internet Archive: The Vedanta-Sutras with the Commentary by Sankarakarya, pt. 1. Adhyâya I–II, translated by George Thibaut. EPUB, MOBI, TXT and PDF formats. 

v. 35. The Questions of King Milinda, pt. 1
Internet Archive: The Questions of King Milinda, pt. 1, translated by T. W. Rhys Davids. EPUB, MOBI, TXT and PDF formats. 

v. 36. The Questions of King Milinda, pt. 2
Internet Archive: The Questions of King Milinda, pt. 1, translated by T. W. Rhys Davids. EPUB, MOBI, TXT and PDF formats.

v. 37. Pahlavi Texts, pt. 4
Internet Archive: Pahlavi Texts, pt. 4. Contents of the Nasks, translated by E.W. West. EPUB, MOBI, TXT and PDF formats.

v. 38. The Vedanta-Sutras, pt. 2
Internet Archive: The Vedanta-Sutras, pt. 2. Adhyâya II-IV. EPUB, MOBI, TXT and PDF formats. 

v. 39. The Sacred Books of China: Texts of Taoism, pt. 1
Internet Archive: The Texts of Taoism, pt. 1. The Tâo Teh King. The writings of Kwang-Sze, bks I-XVII, translated by James Legge. EPUB, MOBI, TXT and PDF formats.

v. 40. Sacred Books of China: Texts of Taoism, pt. 2
Internet Archive: The Texts of Taoism, pt. 2. The Writings of Kwang Tse, bks XVII–XXXIII, the Thâi-shang tractate of actions and their retributions, and appendices, translated by James Legge. EPUB, MOBI, TXT and PDF formats.

v. 41. The Satapatha-Brahmana, pt. 3
Internet Archive: Satapatha Brahmana, pt. 3. Mâdhyandina Shakha bks V-VII, translated by Julius Eggeling.  EPUB, MOBI, TXT and PDF formats.

v. 42. Hymns of the Atharva-Veda
Internet Archive: Hymns of the Atharva-Veda, together with extracts from the ritual books and the commentaries, translated by Maurice Bloomfield. EPUB, MOBI, TXT and PDF formats.

v. 43. The Satapatha-Brahmana, pt. 4
Internet Archive: Satapatha Brahmana, pt. 4. Mâdhyandina Shakha bks VIII-X, translated by Julius Eggeling. EPUB, MOBI, TXT and PDF formats.

v. 44. The Satapatha-Brahmana, pt. 5
Internet Archive: Satapatha Brahmana, pt. 5. Mâdhyandina Shakha bks XI-XIV, translated by Julius Eggeling. EPUB, MOBI, TXT and PDF formats.

v. 45. Gaina Sutras, pt. 2
Internet Archive: Gaina Sutras, pt. 2; The Uttarâdhyayana sûtra, The Sûtrakritânga sûtra, translated by Hermann Jacobi. EPUB, MOBI, TXT and PDF formats. 

v. 46. Vedic Hymns, pt. 2
Internet Archive: Vedic Hymns, pt. 2; Hymns to Agni, Mandalas I-IV, translated by Hermann Oldenberg. EPUB, MOBI, TXT and PDF formats. 

v. 47. Pahlavi Texts, pt. 5
Internet Archive: Marvels of Zoroastrianism, translated by E.W. West. EPUB, MOBI, TXT and PDF formats.

v. 48. Vedanta-Sutras, pt. 3
Internet Archive: Vedanta-Sutras, pt. 3, with the Commentary of Râmânuja. EPUB, MOBI, TXT and PDF formats.

v. 49. Buddhist Mahayana Texts, pt. 1
Internet Archive: Buddhist Mahâyâna Texts, pt.1, The Buddha-karita of Aśvaghoṣa, translated by E.B. Cowell. EPUB, MOBI, TXT and PDF formats. 

v. 50. Buddhist Mahayana Texts, pt.2
Internet Archive: Buddhist Mahayana Texts, pt.2, translated by E.B. Cowell. The Longer Sukhâvatî-vyûha, Shorter Sukhâvatî-vyûha, Vagrakkhedikâ, the longer Pragñâ-pâramitâ-hridaya-sûtra, the shorter Pragñâ-pâramitâ-hridaya-sûtra, Amitâyur dhyâna-sûtra. EPUB, MOBI, TXT and PDF formats. 

Other resources

Internet Archive: Sacred Books of the East
Sacred-texts.com:Sacred Books of the East
University of Adelaide (Internet Archive): Sacred Books of the East
Wikipedia: Sacred Books of the East
Wikisource: Sacred Books of the East


Valmiki: Ramayana

Battle_at_Lanka _Ramayana _Udaipur _1649-53The Ramayana (Sanskrit: रामायणम्) is one of two great Itihasa or epics of ancient India, along with the Mahabharata. It tells the story of Rama, incarnation of Vishnu and heir to the king of Ayodhya. Following Rama's exile to the forest as a result of court intrigues, his wife Sita is kidnapped by Ravana, the ruler of Lanka. Rama seeks her out and rescues her with the aid of his brother Lakshmana and the monkey Hanuman.

The Ramayana is traditionally attributed to the poet Valmiki, a notable character in the poem itself. Assigning a definite to its composition is difficult, but it is thought to have been written between 500 and 100 BCE.

English translations in the public domain include those by Ralph T.H. Griffith and Romesh C. Dutt.

The Ramayana at Amazon: United States | Canada | United Kingdom | France | Germany | Spain | Italy

Free online texts

Ancient Buddhist Texts: The Ramayana, condensed English verse translation, by Romesh Dutt. PDF, EPUB and MOBI formats.

Bombay.indology.info: The Ramayana. Sanskrit text, TXT format.

GRETIL: Ramayana. Sanskrit text, HTML format.

Gutenberg: The Rámáyan of Válmíki, English verse translation by Ralph T. H. Griffith. Multiple formats.

IIT Kanpur: Valmiki Ramayana, Sanskrit text and Audio, with English translation and commentaries. HTML format.

Internet Archive: Ramayana Bala Kanda | Ayodhya Kanda | Aranya Kanda | Kishkindha Kanda | Sundara Kanda | Yuddha Kanda | Uttara Kanda. English translation, edited by M.N. Dutt. Multiple formats.

Internet Archive: Ramayana, condensed English verse translation, by Romesh Dutt. Multiple formats.

Liberty Library: The Ramayana and the Mahabharata, abridged verse translation by Romesh C. Dutt. Multiple formats.

Sacred texts: Rámáyan of Válmíki, translated by Ralph T. H. Griffith. HTML format.

Sacred Texts: The Ramayana and Mahabharata, abridged verse translation by Romesh C. Dutt (1899). HTML format.

Sanskrit Documents: Valmiki Ramayana. Sanskrit text. Multiple formats.

University of Adelaide (Internet Archive): The Rámáyan of Válmíki, English verse translation by Ralph T. H. Griffith. Multiple formats.

ValmikiRamayan.net: Ramayana - Sanskrit text and Audio, with English translation and notes. HTML format.

Wikisource: Sanskrit text and English translation by Ralph T. H. Griffith. HTML and other formats.

Continue reading "Valmiki: Ramayana" »


Vyasa: Mahabharata

Vyasa grants Sanjaya divine vision. Wikimedia CommonsThe Mahābhārata (Sanskrit: महाभारतम्, Mahābhāratam) is a Sanskrit epic, one of  the longest in world literature, and along with the Ramayana, one of two considered sacred texts of Hinduism.

Traditionally ascribed to the sage Vyāsa, the poem deals with the Kurukshetra war between two sets of cousins, the Kauravas and the Pandavas. The historical kernel of these events is thought to date back to Vedic India around 1000 BCE, although the Mahabharata itself is thought to have been written down in the period from 400 BCE.

Embedded within the Mahabharata is the Bhagavad Gita, a philosophical dialogue between the Pandava hero Arjuna and his charioteer, the god Krishna, taking place before the onset of the climactic battle with the Kauravas.

The Mahabharata at Amazon: United States | Canada | United Kingdom | France | Germany | Spain | Italy

Free online texts

Gutenberg: Mahabharata. K.M. Ganguli translation. Multiple formats.

Holy Books.com: The Mahabharata - K.M Ganguli translation, PDF format.

Internet Archive: The Mahabharata, translated by K.M. Ganguli (1884-96). Multiple formats.

Online Library of Liberty: The Ramayana and the Mahabharata, verse translation by Romesh C. Dutt. Multiple formats.

Sacred Texts: The Mahabharata, Sanskrit text and English translation by K.M. Ganguli. HTML format.

Sacred Texts: The Ramayana and Mahabharata, abridged verse translation by Romesh C. Dutt (1899). HTML format.

Wikisource: Sanskrit text and partial text of the English translation, by K.M Ganguli. HTML and other formats.

Performances and Reviews

New York Times: Peter Brook transforms an Indian epic for the stage, by Margaret Croyden, 25 August 1985.

YouTube: Peter Brook's The Mahabharata. See also the IMDB page.

Other Resources

Ancient History Encyclopedia: Mahabharata.

Brown University: The Mahabharata, pages by Sanskrit scholar James L. Fitzgerald.

History of Philosophy Without Any Gaps: Grand Illusion - Dharma and Deception in the Mahabharata, podcast episode by Peter Adamson and Jonardon Ganeri.

The Independent: The Book of a Lifetime - The Mahabharata, by Alice Albinia, 9 June 2011.

Librivox: The Mahabharata by Vyasa: The epic of ancient India condensed into English verse, public domain audiobook.

London Review of Books, How to Escape the Curse, John's Smith's translation reviewed by Wendy Doniger.

UC Davis: Mahabharata, synopsis by V. Vemuri.

Wikipedia: Mahabharata.

The Great Conversation: Further reading at Tom's Learning Notes

Bhagavad Gita

Valmiki: Ramayana

Bloom's Western Canon - The Mahabharata is listed.