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Thread: Ancient India: Did You Know?

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    Ancient India: Did You Know?

    Let us collect and highlight the life and science of Ancient India in the form of 'Did You Know?' snippets. Readers may add interesting snippets to this collection. No digressions or spam, please.

    Transportation
    Rig Veda, the oldest document of the human race includes references to the following modes of transportation:

    Jalayan - a vehicle designed to operate in air and water.(6.58.3)
    Kaara - a vehicle that operates on ground and in water.(9.14.1)
    Tritala - a vehicle consisting of three stories. (3.14.1)
    Trichakra Ratha - a three-wheeled vehicle designed to operate in the air.(4.36.1)
    Vaayu Ratha - a gas or wind-powered chariot. (5.41.6)
    Vidyut Ratha - a vehicle that operates on power.(3.14.1)

    Irrigation
    The world's oldest dam still in use is the Grand Anaicut or Kallanai, in Tamilnadu, which was built in the second century by the Chola king Karikalan.

    Nuclear Bomb
    The description in Mahabarata of the devastations caused by the brahmAstra, closely resembles the explosion of an atomic bomb. This is why Dr. Robert Oppenheimer (1904-1967), said to a query if the atomic bomb exploded in Alamogordo under the Manhattan Project, "Well -- yes. In modern times, of course."

    Law of Gravity
    The ancient Hindu astronomer Bhaskaracharya, states in the Surya Siddanta dated 400-500 C.E.:

    "Objects fall on the earth due to a force of attraction by the earth. Therefore, the earth, planets, constellation, moon, and sun are held in orbit due to this force."

    About 1200 years later Newton rediscovered this phenomenon, calling it the Law of Gravity!

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    Exclamation Re: Ancient India: Transportation

    Quote Originally Posted by Saidevo

    Jalayan - a vehicle designed to operate in air and water.(6.58.3)
    Kaara - a vehicle that operates on ground and in water.(9.14.1)
    Tritala - a vehicle consisting of three stories. (3.14.1)
    Trichakra Ratha - a three-wheeled vehicle designed to operate in the air.(4.36.1)
    Vaayu Ratha - a gas or wind-powered chariot. (5.41.6)
    Vidyut Ratha - a vehicle that operates on power.(3.14.1)
    jalayAna simply indicates “a water-vehicle”.

    kAra simply indicates “motive effort” or “effective action”.

    RV 3.14.1. does not use the word “tritala”, although it does mention lightning (as the vehicle of agni ~ see below).

    RV 4.36.1. is referring to the Rbhus, who are always assumed to be three (Rbhu, vAja, and vibhvan), and who are supposed to dwell within the solar orb.

    vAyuM ratha simply refers to the chariot of vAyu (i.e. the Wind).

    And vidyudratha simply refers to the lightning vehicle of agni ~ vidyut is “lightning”.

  3. #3

    Re: Ancient India: Did You Know?

    Quote Originally Posted by saidevo
    Law of Gravity
    The ancient Hindu astronomer Bhaskaracharya, states in the Surya Siddanta dated 400-500 C.E.:
    The author of Surya Siddhanta is unknown, just like vedas. Surya Siddhanta itself states that Surya Siddhanta was taught by Surya ( Sun God) to Mayasura. Barring this legendary account, its authorship is not known. It can be dated to around 150 A.D based on the longitude of the apogee mentioned in the text itself. Bhaskaracharya is dated 12th century and cannot be connected to this text at all. (There is a lesser known Bhaskara of an earlier period)

    It is however true that Bhaskaracharya is connected with this mention of gravity, and the work is Siddhanta Shiromani.

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