The question of Jainism/Mahavir
The issue of the Vedas, and then the Upanishads is hard to resolve in the absence of data. But I have always suspected the classic dharmas spring from a different source than the Rig Veda tradition.
Perhaps one clue lies in the relationship of Mahavir, Jainism, and Buddhism. The Jain tradition asks for some historical analysis: what is its relationship to Hinduism? And what of the tradition of 23 teertankers prior to Mahavir, the last.
In any case, we need to consider the effect of the Axial Age. The sudden jump in quality has its own explanation. But it doesn’t follow that there wasn’t an earlier tradition.
Also, consider the Samkhya: are its origins purely in the Axial Age?
It is important for western seekers to orient themselves on these questions because the dangers of ‘authority’, as with Gurdjieff, in a bogus tradition are great.