Saturday, August 29, 2015

The Famous Sun Dial at Konark, Odisha

The sundial has 8 major spokes that divide 24 hours into 8 equal parts, which means that the time between two major spokes is 3 hours. There are 8 minor spokes as well. Each minor spoke runs exactly in the middle of 2 major spokes. This means that the minor spoke divides the 3 hours in half, so the time between a major spoke and a minor spoke is an hour and half or 90 minutes.

Now, at the edge of the wheel, you can see a lot of beads. If you observe carefully, you can see that there are 30 beads between a minor and a major spoke. So, the 90 minutes are further divided by 30 beads. This means that each bead carries a value of 3 minutes. The beads are large enough, so you can also see if the shadow falls in the center of the bead or on one of the ends of the bead. This way we can further calculate time accurately to the minute.

The sundial shows time in an anti-clockwise fashion. At the top, the major spoke stands for midnight and this spoke stands for 3 A.M and this one for 6 A.M and so on. When I place a finger or a pen at the tail of the animal in the axle, the shadow will fall on the edge of the wheel. Now, I simply note the bead where the shadow falls. Using the math we did before, I can easily tell the current time precisely down to the minute. Imagine how much time and coordination would have happened between the astronomers, engineers and sculptors to create something like this 750 years ago.

Now if you are observing closely, you would have 2 questions in your mind right now. The first question would be, what happens when the sun moves from east to west. Since the wheel is carved on a wall, the sun would not shine on this wheel at all. How can we tell time in the afternoons? Now, the Konark temple has another wheel or sundial, located on the west side of the temple as well. You can just use the other sundial that will work perfectly from afternoon, until sunset.

This is the second and the most interesting question. How do you tell time after sunset? There would be no sun, and hence no shadows from sunset till the next morning’s sunrise. After all, we have 2 sundials in the temple which work only when the sun shines. To this question, I want to point out that the Konark temple does not have just 2 wheels like this. The temple has a total of 24 wheels, all accurately carved just like the sundials. Have you heard of the Moondial? Do you know that the moondials can work just like sun dials during night time? What if the other wheels in the temple could be used as moondials?

Many people think that the other 22 wheels were carved for decorative or religious purposes and do not have an actual use. This is what people thought about the 2 sundials as well. Believe it or not, people thought that all the 24 wheels were just carved for beauty and as Hindu symbols. About 100 years ago, it became known that this was a sundial when an old yogi was seen calculating time secretly. Apparently selected people were using these wheels for generations and for 650 years no one else knew about it. They say that when they asked him about the purpose of the other 22 wheels, the yogi refused to talk and simply walked away.

And our knowledge of just these 2 sundials themselves is actually very limited. You can see how there are multiple circles of beads. You can see carvings and markings all over these sundials, and we don’t the meaning of most of them. For example, this carving on a major spoke has exactly 60 beads. Notice how in some carving you can see leaves and flowers which may mean Spring or Summer. Notice how in some carvings you can see lemurs mating, which only happens during winter. So, these sundials could have even been used as an almanac for a variety of different things. Now you can understand how limited our knowledge is about the rest of the 22 wheels.

Friday, August 28, 2015

Hindus Lived 74000 Years Ago Survey Finds

New evidence suggests that Hinduism existed in Indonesia 74,000 ago and it is safe to assume that Hinduism antedates this period.Earlier to this finding a city older that Mohenjo-Daro has been found.

About 76,000 years ago, the volcano Toba – located in what is now Indonesia – erupted to create the largest and most devastating volcanic event of the past 2 million years. Almost 3,000 cubic kilometers of magma was spewed out, while sulfuric acid rained over the earth as far away as Greenland. The world became subject to a volcanic winter, and what followed was one of the most severe ice ages in documented history.

Over in India, the land was showered with 15 centimeters of volcanic ash, which can be seen today, working as a distinct age marker in the earth’s stratigraphy. And yet, contrary to all logic, archaeologists have unearthed assemblages of stone tools both above and below the ash deposit in India’s Jwalapuram Valley.

The tools look remarkably similar to those made by humans in Africa, which indicates that these tools were also human-formed – and yet, if humans were still in India after the depositing of ash (an incredible feat it itself), they would have had an extremely difficult time trying to survive. After all, the sheer magnitude of the eruption suspended both volcanic gas and sulfuric acid in the earth’s atmosphere for years, causing warm sunlight to be redirected away from Earth – and plunging the world into several centuries of temperatures that were at least 3-5 degrees C lower than normal after the event.

Mapping of stone tool artefacts on a Middle Palaeolithic occupation surface under the Toba ash.

Newly discovered archaeological sites in southern and northern India have revealed how people lived before and after the colossal Toba volcanic eruption 74,000 years ago.

        The international, multidisciplinary research team, led by Oxford University in collaboration with Indian institutions, unveiled to a conference in Oxford what it calls ‘Pompeii-like excavations’ beneath the Toba ash.

        The seven-year project examines the environment that humans lived in, their stone tools, as well as the plants and animal bones of the time. The team has concluded that many forms of life survived the super-eruption, contrary to other research which has suggested significant animal extinctions and genetic bottlenecks.

        According to the team, a potentially ground-breaking implication of the new work is that the species responsible for making the stone tools in India was Homo sapiens.  Stone tool analysis has revealed that the artefacts consist of cores and flakes, which are classified in India as Middle Palaeolithic and are similar to those made by modern humans in Africa. ‘Though we are still searching for human fossils to definitively prove the case, we are encouraged by the technological similarities. This suggests that human populations were present in India prior to 74,000 years ago, or about 15,000 years earlier than expected based on some genetic clocks,’ said project director Dr Michael Petraglia, Senior Research Fellow in the School of Archaeology at the University of Oxford.

        This exciting new information questions the idea that the Toba super-eruption caused a worldwide environmental catastrophe. Dr Michael Petraglia, School of Archaeology

An area of widespread speculation about the Toba super-eruption is that it nearly drove humanity to extinction. The fact that the Middle Palaeolithic tools of similar styles are found right before and after the Toba super-eruption, suggests that the people who survived the eruption were the same populations, using the same kinds of tools, says Dr Petraglia. The research agrees with evidence that other human ancestors, such as the Neanderthals in Europe and the small brained Hobbits in Southeastern Asia, continued to survive well after Toba.

        Although some scholars have speculated that the Toba volcano led to severe and wholesale environmental destruction, the Oxford-led research in India suggests that a mosaic of ecological settings was present, and some areas experienced a relatively rapid recovery after the volcanic event.

        The team has not discovered much bone in Toba ash sites, but in the Billasurgam cave complex in Kurnool, Andhra Pradesh, the researchers have found deposits which they believe range from at least 100,000 years ago to the present. They contain a wealth of animal bones such as wild cattle, carnivores and monkeys. They have also identified plant materials in the Toba ash sites and caves, yielding important information about the impact of the Toba super-eruption on the ecological settings.

        Dr Petraglia said: ‘This exciting new information questions the idea that the Toba super-eruption caused a worldwide environmental catastrophe. That is not to say that there were no ecological effects. We do have evidence that the ash temporarily disrupted vegetative communities and it certainly choked and polluted some fresh water sources, probably causing harm to wildlife and maybe even humans.’

Older Than Harappa.
“A team of archaeologists from the Deccan College Post Graduate and Research Institute is back from Haryana where they stumbled upon a record 70 Harappan graves at a site in Farmana, discovering the largest burial site of this civilization in India so far. It is an extraordinary archaeological finding. A big housing complex that matured during the Harappan era was discovered by these archaeologists who have been working in this little known village for the past three years. The archaeological team here uncovered an entire town plan. The skeletal remains belong to an era between 2500 BC to 2000 BC.

Wednesday, August 26, 2015

Do the Vedas prohibit idol worship?

It is a very controversial thing about this verses along the religious websites, especially non-Hindu people/websites, they are claiming that idol worship is prohibited in Hinduism.

"andhaṁ tamaḥ praviśanti ye 'sambhūtim upāsate
tato bhūya iva te tamo ya u sambhūtyām ratāḥ ||"

This is present in the Isha Upanishad or the Shukla Yajur Veda chapter forty. But to say that this verse prohibits idol worship would be incorrect. All that it says is, those who worship only the asambhuta (which has not originated) and those who worship only the sambhuta (which has originated) enter into darkness.

But the thing is, because Sanskrit words can mean multiple things, people give it different meanings. But simply speaking, asambhuta here means the unmanifested absolute formless mode of supreme Brahman and sambhuta means the different manifested forms like the devas or demigods. It is because, the absolute neither comes to exist nor ceases to exist (without origin), but the various gods come to exist and also after their time is over cease to exist (with origin). Similarly, there is another verse which forbids both knowledge and ignorance:

"andhaṁ tamaḥ praviśanti ye 'vidyām upāsate
tato bhūya iva te tamo ya u vidyāyām ratāḥ [Isha Up. - 9] ||"

Now tell me, what kind of logic is this! It is understandable if we say one will enter darkness if he worships or follows ignorance, but why would any one enter darkness if he follows knowledge?

So these verses only encourage to have a complete knowledge of the both the aspects instead of following or knowing only one partially. It is because both knowledge and ignorance are part of God:

"vidyāvidye mama tanū [SB - 11.11.3]"
- Both knowledge and ignorance are my body (energy potencies)
And God is both with and without forms:

"dve vāva brahmaṇo rūpe, mūrtaṃ caivāmūrtaṃ ca [Brh. Up - 2.3.1] ||"
- God (Brahman) has two modes, formless (nirakara, asambhuta) as well as form (sakar, sambhuta).

The Vedas and scriptures are full of contradicting statements for a certain reason. If one takes up only one statement and tries to define everything else as per it, then he will only reach biased and wrong conclusions. Complete knowledge is always required. So another verse of that same Upanishad explicitly mentions to known both knowledge and ignorance. Because only by knowing both the modes of God that one will be able to have the complete and absolute knowledge:

"vidyāṁ cāvidyāṁ ca yas tad vedobhayaṁ saha
avidyayā mṛtyuṁ tīrtvā vidyayāmṛtam aśnute [Isha Up. - 11] ||"

Only one who can learn the process of nescience (avidya) and that of transcendental knowledge (vidya) side by side can transcend the influence of repeated birth and death and enjoy the full blessings of immortality.

So don't take any such arguments seriously. Idol worship is neither mandatory nor prohibited in Hinduism. In fact puranas like Shrimad Bhagavatam itself mention the process of deity form worship of the God and what the idols can be made of:

"śailī dāru-mayī lauhī lepyā lekhyā ca saikatī
mano-mayī maṇi-mayī pratimāṣṭa-vidhā smṛtā [SB - 11.27.12] ||"

The Deity form of the Lord is said to appear in eight varieties — stone, wood, metal, earth, paint, sand, the mind or jewels.

Tuesday, August 25, 2015

Mind Blowing Facts about Sanskrit

•  Sanskrit has the highest number of vocabularies than any other language in the world.

•  102 arab 78 crore 50 lakh words have been used till now in Sanskrit. If it will be used in computers & technology, then more these number of words will be used in next 100 years.

•  Sanskrit has the power to say a sentence in a minimum number of words than any other language.

•  America has a University dedicated to Sanskrit and the NASA too has a department in it to research on Sanskrit manuscripts.

•  Sanskrit is the best computer friendly language.(Ref: Forbes Magazine July 1987).

•  Sanskrit is a highly regularized language. In fact, NASA declared it to be the “only unambiguous spoken language on the planet” – and very suitable for computer comprehension.

•  Sanskrit is an official language of the Indian state of Uttarakhand.

•  There is a report by a NASA scientist that America is creating 6th and 7th generation super computers based on Sanskrit language. Project deadline is 2025 for 6th generation and 2034 for 7th generation computer. After this there will be a revolution all over the world to learn Sanskrit.

•  The language is rich in most advanced science, contained in their books called Vedas, Upanishads, Shruti, Smriti, Puranas, Mahabharata, Ramayana etc. (Ref: Russian State University, NASA etc. NASA possesses 60,000 palm leaf manuscripts, which they are studying.)

•  Learning of Sanskrit improves brain functioning. Students start getting better marks in other subjects like Mathematics, Science etc., which some people find difficult. It enhances the memory power. James Junior School, London, has made Sanskrit compulsory. Students of this school are among the toppers year after year. This has been followed by some schools in Ireland also.

•  Research has shown that the phonetics of this language has roots in various energy points of the body and reading, speaking or reciting Sanskrit stimulates these points and raises the energy levels, whereby resistance against illnesses, relaxation to mind and reduction of stress are achieved.

•  Sanskrit is the only language, which uses all the nerves of the tongue. By its pronunciation, energy points in the body are activated that causes the blood circulation to improve. This, coupled with the enhanced brain functioning and higher energy levels, ensures better health. Blood Pressure, diabetes, cholesterol etc. are controlled. (Ref: American Hindu University after constant study)

•  There are reports that Russians, Germans and Americans are actively doing research on Hindu’s sacred books and are producing them back to the world in their name. Seventeen countries around the world have a University or two to study Sanskrit to gain technological advantages.

•  Surprisingly, it is not just a language. Sanskrit is the primordial conduit between Human Thought and the Soul; Physics and Metaphysics; Subtle and Gross; Culture and Art; Nature and its Author; Created and the Creator.

•  Sanskrit is the scholarly language of 3 major World religions – Hinduism, Buddhism (along with Pali) and Jainism (second to Prakrit).

•  Today, there are a handful of Indian villages (in Rajasthan, Madhya Pradesh, Orissa, Karnataka and Uttar Pradesh) where Sanskrit is still spoken as the main language. For example in the village of Mathur in Karnataka, more than 90% of the population knows Sanskrit. Mathur/Mattur is a village 10 kms from Shimoga speaks Sanskrit on daily basis (day-to-day communication).

•  Even a Sanskrit daily newspaper exists! Sudharma, published out of Mysore, has been running since 1970 and is now available online as an e-paper (!

•  The best type of calendar being used is hindu calendar(as the new year starts with the geological change of the solar system)
ref: german state university

•  The UK is presently researching on a defence system based on Hindu’s shri chakra.

•  Another interesting fact about Sanskrit language was that the process of introducing new words into the language continued for a long period until it was stopped by the great grammarian Panini who wrote an entire grammar for the language laying down rules for the derivation of each and every word in Sanskrit and disallowed the introducing of new words by giving a full list of Roots and Nouns. Even after Panini, some changes occur which were regularised by Vararuchi and finally by Patanjali. Any infringement of the rules as laid down by Patanjali was regarded as a grammatical error and hence the Sanskrit Language has remained in same without any change from the date of Patanjali (about 250 B.C.) up to this day.

•  Sanskrit is the only language in the world that exists since millions of years. Millions of languages that emerged from Sanskrit are dead and millions will come but Sanskrit will remain eternal. It is truly language of Bhagwan.

2011 India Religious census data is finally out after 4 years:

Friday, August 21, 2015

Harvard University Says ... Kumbh mela is better organized than Fifa WC !!!

A book produced by scholars and students of Harvard University along with architects and town planners of international repute, declared that Maha Kumbh 2013 to be better organised than FIFA World Cup in Brazil and Commonwealth Games in New Delhi.

Fascinating facts about Maha Kumbh
– The tent township is much larger than the size of Manhattan in terms of population.
– More than 100 million come to a small place and stay there for 55 days.
– Nearly 5 million people bath in the holy rivers Ganga, Yamuna and Saraswati.

The Largest hub of communication in one place
– There are 390 million communication events (calls, messages, etc).
– 146 million (145,736,764) text messages
– 245 million (245,252,102) calls

Hindu Temple, Sialkot, Pakistan

Sunday, August 9, 2015

Vyuhs(व्यूह) described in Mahabharat

Vyuh (Sanskrit: व्यूह) means - 'to arrange troops in a battle array', 'to arrange, put or place in order, to dispose, separate, divide, alter, transpose, disarrange, resolve.
At various times during battle, the supreme commander of either army ordered special formations(vyuhas). Each formation had a specific purpose; some were defensive while others were offensive. Each formation had its specific strengths and weaknesses.

The Mahabharat lists the following:

1. Krauncha vyuha(heron formation)
2. Makara vyuha(crocodile formation)
3. Kurma vyuha(tortoise or turtle formation)
4. Trishula vyuha(trident formation)
5. Chakrvyuha(wheel or discus formation)
6. Kamala vyuha or Padma vyuha(lotus formation)
7. Garud vyuha(eagle formation)
8. Oormi vyuha(ocean formation)
9. Mandala vyuha(galaxy formation)
10. Vajra vyuha(diamond or thunderbolt formation)
11. Shakata vyuha(box or cart formation)
12. Asura vyuha(demon formation)
13. Deva vyuha(divine formation)
14. Soochi vyuha(needle formation)
15. Sringataka vyuha(horned formation)
16. Chandrakala vyuha(crescent or curved blade formation)
17. Mala vyuha(garland formation)

Each formation was met bya counter formation by the other side.
For instance , the Sarpa Vyuha was met with Garuda Vyuha(Serpent formation against Eagle.Formation was usually met with Garuda or eagle Formation’Eagle is a Natural Enemy of Heron.Note the Swoop of the Garuda, nullifying and swamping the posture of the Heron.
There were also courses to get into and out of each formation.

Thursday, August 6, 2015

Raghuvanshi: The Most Respected Lineage Among Hindu Kings

King Raghu was son of King Dilīp. The practice of donating amass wealth, protecting cows and sharing prosperity with people and Sages was done more passionately by King Raghu in his Kingdom.

King Raghu was one of the greatest donors. Demands of common people, whoever visited the palace were met, while giving them dignity and respect. Sages, Sadhus were regarded as protectors of the land and held with high esteem in the palace. There was common saying in the kingdom that “no one returned from the palace of King Raghu empty-handed.”

Such was the passion to keep people happy that all promises and demands of the praja was fulfilled by King Raghu.

This also led to the another famous saying:
Raghukul Reet Sada Chali aayi, Prann Jaaye Par Vachan Na Jaaye
Meaning: The legacy of Raghukul continues; words and promises are kept even to the extent of giving life to fulfill it.

Clash of King Dilip with Indra on Completion of Yagna
Performing 100 yagnas with proper Vedic principles under guidance of Sages was done before by Indra, King of Gods (Indra is a position acquired by people who are eligible to become one).

King Raghu’s father King Dilīp was a very pious king and devotee of Brahma, Vishnu and Mahesh, so he performed as many as 100 yajnas. It required immense devotion, penance and focus to perform 100 yagnas and only Indra was successful to do so. King Dilip was nearing the completion of his 100th yagna, Indra felt jealous and so he placed many hurdles in the path of the ongoing 100th yagna, but King Raghu with his piousness, bhakti and devotion was able to continue the 100th yagna and successfully complete it. The most celebrated of all, Raghukul Dynasty was thus born. It was series of pious karmas of forefathers of King Raghu and then his future sons that made it possible for Vishnu to take Avatar as Bhagwan Ram so as to eventaully make the end of Treta Yug more dharmic filled with prosperity, piousness and free from Asurs (Rakshas).

King Raghu was soft spoken, kind hearted and intelligent ruler. He took blessings of Sages and their guidance to rule the Kingdom. His foresightedness was responsible that kept his Kingdom very happy; free from wrath, distress and sorrow. He was ardent devotee of Vedic gods, very brave King and knew rightful ways to treat enemies.

To avoid invasion, establish dharma and make this world peaceful place – pious and free from adharmis, Anti-Vedic people. King Raghu showcased his great warrior skills when he marched towards central Asia (now Uzbekistan, Tajikistan, southern Kyrgyzstan and Kazakhstan). King Raghu made them aware of the Vedic science, principles and peaceful ways of leading life.

The kingdom of Raghu extend from his capital Ayodhya (Awadh) to the Bay of Bengal, then south along the eastern shore of India to Cape Comorin, then north along the western shore until the region surrounded by the Indus (Sindhu river), finally east through the tremendous Himalayan range into Assam

Wednesday, August 5, 2015

Hindu legacy in Quanzhou,China

Evidence of Hinduism in China have been found in and around Quanzhou in Fujian province, suggesting a Hindu community and particularly Tamil Hindu traders in medieval China. The evidence consists of a Tamil-Chinese bilingual inscription dated April 1281 AD devoted to deity Śiva, as well as over 300 artifacts, idols and Chola-style temple structures discovered in Fujian rovince since 1933.Archeological studies suggest at least Vaishnavism and Shaivism schools of Hinduism had arrived in China in its history.

At present, there are no Hindus in Quanzhou. However, there previously existed a Tamil Hindu community in the city who, in the late 13th century, built the Kaiyuan Temple dedicated to Lord Shiva. The temple is now in ruins, but over 300 carvings are still within the city. Many are currently on display in the Quanzhou museum, and some have become a part of Buddhist temple—Kaiyuan Temple. Behind its main hall "Mahavira Hall”, there are some columns decorated by some Hinduism carvings. The carvings are dispersed across five primary sites in Quanzhou and the neighboring areas. They were made in the South Indian style, and share close similarities with 13th-century temples constructed in the Kaveri Delta region in Tamil Nadu. Nearly all the carvings were carved with greenish-gray granite, which was widely available in the nearby hills and used in the region's local architecture.Shiva-related themes depicted in Quanzhou temple include the story of Gajaranya Kshetra - an elephant worshipping a Shiva linga, the story of Saivite saint Thirumular depicted through a cow anointing a linga and two Hindu wrestler story from Indian region now called as Andhra Pradesh.

In addition to Shiva, Vishnu sculpture has been discovered in Nanjiaochang area.Two pillars on the Kaiyuan temple have seven images dedicated to Vishnu - one with Garuda, one in the man-lion Narasimha avatar, one depicting the legend of Gajendra moksha, one with Lakshmi, one as Krishna stealing milkmaids clothing to tease them, one depicting the story of Vishnu as Krishna subduing serpent Kaliya, and another of Krishna in Mahabharat

Monday, August 3, 2015

Sculpting The Entire Rock to Realize Divine Imagination

The Kailash temple is not built. All is cut and carved from one gigantic piece of rock, hewn out of the Charanandri hills of the Sahyadri range of the Deccan Plateau at a village, which once was called Elapura, (later renamed as Ellora by british), 30 km northwest of Sambhajinagar (aurangabad). The Kailash temple was cut from the top down in a U-shape form, about 50 Meters deep in the back and sliding to lower levels on the sides to the front where there is an entry gate. From where the cutting was started is not known, definitely it could be from the Ganesh Dwar (every Hindu temple has a place that is dedicated to Bhagwan Ganesh, Son of Bhagwan Shiv), but later were the de-pilings done simultaneously or step by step – nothing is clear even after deep research conducted by several experts.

After deeply analyzing the amount of man-hours and efforts involved, experts summarized that the scale at which the work was undertaken is enormous. It covers twice the area of the Parthenon in Athens and is 1.5 times high (and bigger than all ancient temples of the world), and it entailed removing 200,000 tonnes of rock. It is believed to have taken 7,000 labourers and 150 years to complete the project.

Practically speaking with modern technology, given the space and plan around the Kailash temple, it is almost impossible to implement Ten 10-ton JCB machines to remove the rock pieces, as movement of each machine would require space and such huge machines can muffle up lot of space around them, their function is very complicated and when the ground is hollow the machine cannot operate and pose problem in itself.

Hypothetically, If the scale of work was carried today, it would have required at least 10 largest ever 10-ton JCB machines to excavate the pieces of rock of 20,000 tonnes by each machine. Each machine is able to excavate 100 tons of rock pieces in phased manner so even removal of 1000 tonnes each day would have taken more than 6 months i.e. 200 days of continous work !

Is It Possible to Replicate the Divine Feat by Humans Today
Today building a massive structure like Kailash temple would require pre-design and 3D conceptions using latest CAD softwares and high-tech computers. Imagining  how the structure will look at which area we should have distance properly maintained to start carving, where we should pause, which side we should start building entrace, how the internal design be formed. There are hundreds of questions which require answers and only getting resolutions around these queries alone would require several months of hundreds of dedicated designs, 3D graphic artistes and designers who have knowledge of construction and civil work.

The precision with which the sculpts can be cut is still not invented by engineers in the world today. So we will need manual labors to minutely carve the temple. It will require at least 10,000 skilled workers to carry out the digging, carving, sculpting and materializing the entire structure as envisioned. The total duration required to complete the task cannot be estimated because till date in modern times, no single mid-size rock is cut to create a temple.

Repeating such a feat even by using modern technology is almost impossible but ancient Hindu Sages made it possible simply with their spiritual powers, astute direction to skilled and dedicated workers with endless divine blessings of Bhagwan.