The Vedas form the bedrock of the Bharatiya Culture and Civilization and are the fountain head of all that is pure and sublime in the human way of life. They are ANAADHI (timeless, without a beginning and APAOURSHEYA (not emanating from any Individual living being). They are deemed to be the life-breath of Bhagavan Sri Maha Vishnu. "Yasya Niswasitham Vedaha".
SANATHANA DHARMA, which connotes the way of life for all humanity, is based on the VEDAS which furnish guidelines on all subjects necessary for the well being of humanity and is applicable to all times. Vedic Chanting, according to the prescribed rules, leads not only to collective prosperity and individual well being, but also avoids natural calamities and mitigates evils . Invocation of Devatas and their blessings, leads to universal prosperity, ushering peace and contentment everywhere.
Utilisation of the Vedic mantras in the samskaras (Rituals) helps the spiritual growth of the individual, purifies the atmosphere and helps curtail illness and other evil effects.
This vast storehouse of knowledge and ancient wisdom in ALL the Disciplines -- you name any and you can trace it to the Vedas -- was codified by Bhagvan Sri Veda Vyasa into the four Rig, Yajur, Sama and Atharva Vedas and further split into 1131 Sakhas (Rescensions) in the beginning of time.
Until recently, they have been handed down from generation to generation by oral teaching in the Gurukula, Guru-Sishya tradition without any written text. Its pristine purity in terms of Pronunciation, Swara (intonation), and etymology had been preserved in a unique time tested form, down the millennia.
Due to efflux of time and persons proficient in each of the Sakhas dwindling gradually in number and ultimately becoming extinct, today we have in vogue only 10 or 11 Sakhas.
His Holiness Sri Sri Chandrashekarendra Saraswati Swamiji - Sankaracharya of Kanchi Kamakoti Peetam - popularly known as "Sage of Kanchi", "Kanchi Paramacharyal" etc., found that the number of those dedicating themselves to the study of Vedas had diminished due to an uncertain future, with no promise of even a minimum economic livelihood. His holiness was greatly worried over the decline of the traditional Vedic education resulting in the paucity of Vedic scholars carrying our great Vedic heritage to the next generation. Thus, there was a fear that this great treasure, beneficial to all mankind, being lost forever.
His Holiness made it His Life's mission to draw the attention of society to this none too happy situation. In every one of His post-puja discourses for well over six decades of His Pontificate, He dwelt at length on the duty of the general public in this regard. Towards this end, He founded the VEDA RAKSHANA NIDHI TRUST in the late fifties and charged it with the responsibility of preserving, resuscitating and propagating the Vedic way of life and the traditional mode of Veda Adhyayana in the Gurukula tradition.
Starting on a modest scale then, the Trust, today, after nearly four decades, has been responsible for the upbringing of nearly a thousand fully equipped and qualified Vedapatis who are ministering to the spiritual and religious needs of the community throughout India. The Trust administers several traditional Veda Patashalas under its own auspices and guides a large number of independently maintained similar Patashalas on the academic side, conducts examinations, (annual as well as final ) for students of all of the Patashalas. The Trust disburses cash grants and certificates of proficiency to all who come out successful in these examinations. The Trust conducts Veda Sammelanams (Seminars) in different parts of the country to enable the lay public to have an idea and feel of the Vedic way of life and tradition. The Trust spends about Rupees Fifteen Lakhs ( Rs. 1.5 Million) every year on its activities, from out of the voluntary contributions of philanthropic individuals and institutions from far and near throughout the land.