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Most frequently used to designate a branch of the Veda, i.e. the particular version or recension of a text being followed or recited. Those doing the reciting are properly called caraṇa, but the two terms are often used synonymously, so that śākhā also refers to a particular school or tradition of recitation and interpretation (e.g. the Śākala śākhā of the Ṛg Veda Saṃhitā, the Jaiminīya śākhā of the Sāma Veda).

Subjects: Hinduism.

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