MUM tape librarian Dr. Peter Freund and student Vivek Vaidyanatham
Manuscripts on palm leaves in the library of the Oriental Research Institute, University of Mysore
Vivek with the curator of the Oriental Research Institute
The Vasishthalainga Upapurana was in delicate condition when Vivek found it in the Government Oriental Manuscript Library in Chennai
MUM Vedic Library
Preserves Rare Texts
Maharishi University of Management Library has compiled one of the largest and most authentic collections of Vedic literature in Sanskrit. The Vedicreserve online library contains over 60,000 pages of text in the Devanagari script, and the collection is continually being expanded.
The purpose of the library is to serve Maharishi Vedic ScienceSM students. One of the tracks in the doctoral program focuses on reading the Vedic literature in Sanskrit and experiencing the profound personal development that accompanies this research. The library includes texts from all 40 branches of Vedic literature described in Maharaja Adhiraj Rajaraam’s book, Human Physiology, Expression of Veda and the Vedic Literature.
The texts are available in pdf format so students can read them on their computers or tablets. “The Vedic reserve library is like a green light where everything is what you want and everything is arranged,” said Dr. Peter Freund, MUM tape librarian. Dr. Freund has been collecting scripts for over 12 years, and in many cases typing them from manuscripts and transcribing them from other alphabets so that students can read them more easily.
Some of the Vedic texts have never been published and are only available as fragile manuscripts hidden in the libraries of India. MA in Maharishi Vedic Science student Vivek Vaidyanatham recently located and photographed several rare manuscripts in the Government Oriental Manuscript Library in Chennai and at the Oriental Research Institute, University of Mysore.
“These manuscripts were maintained through generations,” said Vivek. “There were families who maintained these texts. They would copy them from palm leaf to palm leaf. This is the time to collect them. I feel fortunate to have seen them.” Vivek is also working to find long-term collaborators in India to preserve these manuscripts.
The Vedic reserve library also helps the Vedic Pandits maintain their traditions and is available to anyone at no cost. The site receives about 5,000 visitors a month from all over the world.