By Swami Harshananda
Sometimes transliterated as: Kandarsi, KANDarSi, Kaandarshi
Kāṇḍarṣi literally means ‘the sage of the kāṇḍa or section of the Vedas’.
‘Kāṇḍarṣi-s’ are the chief ṛṣis or sages who have expounded the Vedas and Upaniṣads.
Sections of Vedas
The Vedas are generally divided into two kāṇḍas or sections:
- The Karmakāṇḍa - deals with Vedic rituals
- The Jñānakāṇḍa - deals with Knowledge
Sages Famous as Kāṇḍarṣis
The karmakāṇḍa was expounded by Jaimini. The Jñānakāṇḍa was written by Bādarāyaṇa Vyāsa. Hence these two are specifically known as ‘kāṇḍarṣis’.
Sometimes, the sage Śāṇḍilya is recognized as the third kāṇḍarṣi. Since he expounded the bhakti aspect of the Vedas. It is the different aspect from the karma and the jñāna. He calls the jñānakāṇḍa section as Brahmakāṇḍa.
- The Concise Encyclopedia of Hinduism, Swami Harshananda, Ram Krishna Math, Bangalore