Religion: Post-Rig Vedic
Three more Vedas – Yajur, Sama and Atharva –were composed after the Rig Veda. Manuals of rituals called Brahmanas, specifying rhyming words to be sung, and two
commentaries on certain Rig Vedic hymns called Aranyakas, containing knowledge to be learnt secretly in the forest, and the Upanishads, were compiled in the upper Gangetic plain during 1000–600 BCE.
During the post -Vedic period, the Rig Vedic gods such as Varuna, Indra, Agni, Surya and Usha lost their importance. New gods like Siva, Vishnu and Brahma appeared on the religious firmament. Aryans developed the ideas of tapas (virtuous living) and brahmacharya (celibacy). Rites and rituals insisted on by Brahman priests overshadowed the true spirit of the religion. The sacrificial cult, supported by the wealthy and the elite, practised in accordance with the formulae prescribed in Brahmanas, were opposed by Buddha and Mahavira, who revolted against the existing practices and proposed their ethical teachings.