Chapter-4. Swami Sri Adi Sankaracharya - The Genius ( Sankara Jayanti ) :
Now, we know very well how we have slowly drifted away from the original intention of the Veda Mantras by the degeneration of the time process – the advent of Treta, Dvapara and Kali Yuga, or whatever we may call it.
So, the emphasis got completely shifted from the universal to the external, material, and even prejudiced way of thinking.
The offerings in these Yajnas or sacrifices meant to propitiate the gods that are many, were in the beginning holy articles such as clarified butter, certain grains and pulses, wood from sacred trees like Asvattha, Palasa and so on, gruel cooked out of rice, Payasam, Charu, etc.
But once we make a mistake, we do not stop with it.
It goes on multiplying, and there is an aggregate of errors.
Mistake after mistake began to be committed with the pious intention of propitiating the gods; all kinds of offerings were poured into the sacred fire.
Well, it came to a climax when even living beings were mercilessly offered because of the belief that a particular Devata would be pleased.
To be continued ....