The Vedas are the original Sanskrit texts of India’s ancient spiritual culture. The Vedas include knowledge on every facet of human endeavor, material and spiritual, like a set of reference manuals for achieving ultimate success in this life and the next. “Veda” literally means “knowledge,” and “Vedic,” in its extended meaning, refers to works that extend or follow the Vedas, including the Puranas, Vedanta-sutra, and Upanishads.
The Puranas, or “ancient histories,” are meant to make the Vedas more accessible for the people in the present age. And the Bhagavat Purana, or Srimad-Bhagavatam, is called the essence, or the “cream” of all Vedic literature.
Image of an 18th century manuscript of the Bhagavad-gita courtesy of the Schoyen Collection