List of Hindu texts

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Hinduism is an ancient religion with diverse traditions such Shaivism, Vaishnavism, Shaktism and others.[1][2] Each tradition has a long list of Hindu texts, with subgenre based on syncretization of ideas from Samkhya, Nyaya, Yoga, Vedanta and other schools of Hindu philosophy.[3][4][5] Of these some called Sruti are broadly considered as core scriptures of Hinduism, but beyond the Sruti, the list of scriptures vary by the scholar.[6]

Several lists include only the Vedas, the Principal Upanishads, the Agamas and the Bhagavad Gita as scriptures broadly accepted by Hindus.[6][7] Goodall adds regional texts such as Bhagavata Purana and Yajnavalkya Smriti to the list.[6] Beyond the Sruti, Hindu texts include Smritis, Shastras, Sutras, Tantras, Puranas, Itihasas, Stotras, Subhashitas and others.[8][9]

Most of these texts exist in Sanskrit and Tamil,[10][11] several others have been composed in other Indic languages. In modern times, most have been translated into other Indian languages and some in Western languages.[12][13] This list includes major Hindu texts, along with the Hindu scriptures.




  • Classics of Indian Mathematics: Algebra, with Arithmetic and Mensuration, from the Sanskrit of Brahmagupta and Bhāskara.
  • Chanakyaniti: collection of aphorisms, said to be selected by Chanakya from the various shastras





  • Itihasas – meaning history. In Hindu religious context this term refers to the Mahabharata and the Ramayana because writer of the story has themselves witnessed the stories of both epics.



  • Lilavati: book on including maths and algebra written by Indian mathematician Bhāskara II in 1150
  • Lal kitab[16] book for astrology and black magic written by ravana[17]



  • Naam Ghosa (Assamese: নামঘোষা) is a Vaishnavite scripture of verses in praise of Lord Krishna. This book was written by Madhabdev in Assamese in about 1568–1596.
  • Naalayira Divya Prabhandham (Tamil: நாலாயிர திவ்ய பிரபந்தம்) is a collection of 4,000 Tamil verses (Naalayira in Tamil means 'four thousand') composed before 8th century AD,[1] by the 12 Alvars, and was compiled in its present form by Nathamuni during the 9th – 10th centuries. The work is the beginning of the canonization of the 12 Vaishnava poet saints, and these hymns are still sung extensively even today. The works were lost before they were collected and organized in the form of an anthology by Nathamuni.
  • Natyashastra: Sanskrit treatise on the performing arts, attributed to ancient Indian theatrologist and musicologist sage Bharata Muni. It consists of 36 chapters with a cumulative total of 6000 poetic verses describing performance arts.


  • Purana (पुराण): Purana meaning "ancient" or "old" is the name of a genre (or a group of related genres) of Indian written literature (as distinct from oral literature). Its general themes are history, tradition and religion. It is usually written in the form of stories related by one person to another.
  • Periya Puranam (பெரியபுராணம்): The Periya Puranam (Tamil: பெரிய‌ புராண‌ம்), that is, the great puranam or epic, sometimes called Tiruttontarpuranam ("Tiru-Thondar-Puranam", the Purana of the Holy Devotees), is a Tamil poetic account depicting the legendary lives of the sixty-three Nayanars, the canonical poets of Tamil Shaivism. It was compiled during the 12th century by Sekkizhar. It provides evidence of trade with South Indian. The Periya Puranam is part of the corpus of Shaiva canonical works.
  • Parasurama Kalpasutra (परशुरामकल्पसूत्रम्)): Parashurama Kalpasutra is authored by Parasurama, the fifth avatar of Lord Vishnu and a disciple of Guru Dattatreya. It is a sacred text for the Shri Vidya worshippers of Goddess Lalita Devi, who is considered to be a manifestation of the Divine Mother (Shakti), and the text is therefore used in the worship of Ganesha, Bala Tripurasundari, Raja Shyamala, Varahi as well. This text has its origins in the Dattatreya Samhita and is compiled by Sumedha, a disciple of Guru Dattatreya.







See also[edit]


  1. Flood 1996, pp. 113, 154.
  2. Michaels 2004, pp. 21–23.
  3. Mike Burley (2012), Classical Samkhya and Yoga - An Indian Metaphysics of Experience, Routledge, ISBN 978-0415648875, page 39-41;
    Lloyd Pflueger, Person Purity and Power in Yogasutra, in Theory and Practice of Yoga (Editor: Knut Jacobsen), Motilal Banarsidass, ISBN 978-8120832329, pages 38-39
  4. Knut Jacobsen (2008), Theory and Practice of Yoga : 'Essays in Honour of Gerald James Larson, Motilal Banarsidass, ISBN 978-8120832329, pages 77-78;
    Isaeva, Natalia (1993). Shankara and Indian Philosophy. State University of New York Press. pp. 79–80. ISBN 978-0-7914-1281-7.;
    Natalia Isaeva (1995). From Early Vedanta to Kashmir Shaivism: Gaudapada, Bhartrhari, and Abhinavagupta. State University of New York Press. pp. 137, 163, 171–178. ISBN 978-1-4384-0761-6.;
    C. J. Bartley (2013). The Theology of Ramanuja: Realism and Religion. Routledge. pp. 1–4, 52–53, 79. ISBN 978-1-136-85306-7.
  5. Matthew Clarke (2011). Development and Religion: Theology and Practice. Edward Elgar Publishing. p. 28. ISBN 9780857930736.
  6. 6.0 6.1 6.2 Dominic Goodall (1996), Hindu Scriptures, University of California Press, ISBN 978-0520207783, page ix-xi, xx-xxi
  7. RC Zaehner (1992), Hindu Scriptures, Penguin Random House, ISBN 978-0679410782, pages 1-11 and Preface
  8. Ludo Rocher (1986), The Puranas, Otto Harrassowitz Verlag, ISBN 978-3-447-02522-5
  9. Moriz Winternitz (1996). A History of Indian Literature. Motilal Banarsidass. pp. xv–xvi. ISBN 978-81-208-0264-3.
  10. "Indian languages and the classical status".
  11. "Why is Sanskrit so controversial?". BBC News. 12 August 2014.
  12. Sargeant, Winthrop, Introduction to The Bhagavad Gita at 3 (New York, 1984) ISBN 0-87395-831-4
  13. Swami Nikhilananda, The Upanishads: A New Translation Vol. I, at 3 (5th Ed. 1990) ISBN 0-911206-15-9
  14. "Arya-Sidhantha". Sankalp India FOundation.
  15. Swarupananda, Swami (1909). "Foreword". Bhagavad Gita. Advaita Ashrama. pp. i–ii.
  16. "Lal Kitab", Wikipedia, 29 September 2021, retrieved 1 January 2022
  17. "Ravana", Wikipedia, 5 December 2021, retrieved 1 January 2022
  18. Patrick Olivelle (2014), The Early Upanisads, Oxford University Press, ISBN 978-0195352429, page 3; Quote: "Even though theoretically the whole of vedic corpus is accepted as revealed truth [shruti], in reality it is the Upanishads that have continued to influence the life and thought of the various religious traditions that we have come to call Hindu. Upanishads are the scriptures par excellence of Hinduism".
  19. Wendy Doniger (1990), Textual Sources for the Study of Hinduism, 1st Edition, University of Chicago Press, ISBN 978-0226618470, pages 2-3; Quote: "The Upanishads supply the basis of later Hindu philosophy; they alone of the Vedic corpus are widely known and quoted by most well-educated Hindus, and their central ideas have also become a part of the spiritual arsenal of rank-and-file Hindus."
  20. Complete Works of Swami Vivekananda Vol III. 118–120; Vol. I. 6–7.


  • Flood, Gavin D. (1996), An Introduction to Hinduism, Cambridge University Press
  • Michaels, Axel (2004), Hinduism. Past and present, Princeton, New Jersey: Princeton University Press