The Rig Veda Test | Mid-Book Test - Hard

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This test consists of 5 short answer questions, 10 short essay questions, and 1 (of 3) essay topics.

Short Answer Questions

1. Who is sometimes Indra's enemy, yet helps him fight the serpent and steal the solar disc?

2. What did Martanda's name originally mean in "Aditi and the Birth of the Gods"?

3. What was used to protect female mourners instead of mascara or eye-shadow, as stated in the "Burial Hymn"?

4. What is the male element of the newborn sun or fire?

5. Savitr is the _____ and the embodiment of twilight.

Short Essay Questions

1. What is the nature of the 'child of the waters' and how does this relate to Agni?

2. Who are the Asuras in the beginning of the Vedas, as opposed to their role toward the end?

3. What is the significance of the membrane in "The Gods Coax Agni Out of the Waters"?

4. What is the state of clarity of the early stages of creation in "The All-maker", according to the author, and why?

5. What is the function of the enclosing-sticks in "The Hymn of Man" as opposed to the fuel-sticks?

6. What is the actual content of the secret in "The Mystery of Agni"?

7. What is meant by the "mist" metaphor in "Aditi and the Birth of the Gods"?

8. What is the meaning of the use of hunger in "In praise of Generosity"?

9. In "The Creation of the Sacrifice", what is the significance of weaving?

10. What is the meaning of the horse carrying the body in "Requiem for a Horse"?

Essay Topics

Write an essay for ONE of the following topics:

Essay Topic 1

Describe how Soma is symbolic. What is it made from? What is its function? Who uses it? Why?

Essay Topic 2

The author describes paradox as a main component of the Rig Veda. Analyze "The Funeral Fire" and describe its paradoxes and ways in which these paradoxes are interpreted.

Essay Topic 3

Describe the plot of the allegory of the "The Boy and the Chariot"? How does the boy follow his father into the realm of Yama? What is he trying to accomplish? What does the chariot symbolize in this myth and throughout the Rig Veda?

(see the answer keys)

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