The division created by the English educated scholars who separate the Vedas and the Upanishads from the Puranas and thus make a distinction between the Vedic dharma and the Puranic dharma is a mistake born of ignorance . The Puranas are accepted as an authority on the Hindu dharma because they explain the knowledge contained in the Veda and the Upanishads to the average man, comment upon it, discuss it at great length and endeavour to apply it to the commonplace details of life .
The 18 Mahapuranas (great Puranas), as the origins of the Puranas, may have overlapped to some extent with the Vedas , but their composition stretched forward into the 4th-5th centuries,... the earliest parts of the Puranic genealogies are either entirely or partly w:Mythicalmythical. The oldest of the Puranas are the Matsya, Vayu and the Brahmanda and for our purposes, the Vishnu Purana, somewhat later than the first three ... the Vedic link also goes back to the earlier statement that the itihasa-purana was the fifth Veda.
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