Of the sixteen samskaras which encompass a Hindu life the last one is performed for the dead by their sons or grandsons or relatives. Many passages in the Puranas and Dharmasastras extol the role of the son in the life of devout Hindu. The present book deals with the rite of Sraddha and vindicates the popular belief that Sraddha, being an important topic, forms an integral part of Hindu Dharmasastra. The belief in the after-death survival of deceased ancestors and their separate world belongs to the Indo-Iranian period and as such is pre-Vedic. Ancestor-worship for one’s prosperity, continuation of one’s race, is as old as the Rigveda. Preface, Introduction, The Antyesti Samskara, Appendices, Glossary.
DR. R.C. PRASAD was University Professor of English in Patna University where he taught for about three decades. He was an eminent author, translator and editor. He had a good number of books to his credit.