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Do You Know?
Namaste Overview Do You Know?

From the invention of the decimal system in mathematics to the noble philosophy of
ahims, Hindus have contributed their share in all fields of knowledge and learning. Over
five thousand years ago, when Europeans were only nomadic forest dwellers, ancient
Hindus had established a civilization, known as the Harappan culture, in the Indus Valley,
the northwestern region of India. When much of the world was still sunk in sleep, people
of the Harappan culture were conducting trade workshops in weaving, bead-making,
pottery, dying of fabrics, and metallurgy.
Although modern images & descriptions of India often show poverty, India was one of the
richest countries till the time of British in the early 17th Century. Christopher Columbus
was attracted by India's wealth and was looking for route to India when he discovered
America by mistake. If readers, who have diligently read their schoolbooks on India, are
surprised that they haven't been told of these ideas before, the fault is of the books they
have used. Such books are as worthless as would be books on America, two hundred
years from now, that describe only matters of conflict between race, language, and
gender, ignoring completely the achievements of science, art, and imagination.
The official Sanskrit name for India is Bharat. INDIA has been called Bharat even in
satya yuga.

The Concept of 'Zero'

The Game of Cards

Did you know that the ancient Hindus


originated the concept 'zero'?

The popular game of cards originated in


ancient India and was known as Kridapatram. It was one of the favorite
pastimes of Indians in ancient times. This

The concept of zero is referred to as


shunya in the early Sanskrit texts and it
is also explained in the Pingalas Chandah

game was patronized especially by the


royalty and nobility. In medieval India,

Sutra (200 AD). In the Brahma Phuta


Siddhanta of Brahmagupta (400-500
AD), the zero is lucidly explained. The
Hindu genius Bhaskaracharya proved
that x divided by 0 = 4 (infinity) and that
infinity however divided remains infinity.
This concept was recognized in Hindu
theology millennia earlier. The earliest
recorded date for an inscription of zero
(inscribed on a copper plate) was found in
Gujarat (585 586 AD). Later, zero
appeared in Arabic books in 770 AD and
from there it was carried to Europe in 800
AD.
The Indian place-value numeration with
zero sign ranks among humanity's
fundamental discoveries.

Vedic roots of Mathematics


Did you know that Geometry,
Trigonometry, Calculus and Algebra
are studies which originated in India?
The word Geometry seems to have
emerged from the Sanskrit word gyaamiti which means "measuring the Earth".
And the word Trigonometry is similar to
tri-kona-miti meaning "measuring
triangular forms". Euclid is credited with
the invention of Geometry in 300 BCE
while the concept of Geometry in India
emerged in 1000 BCE, from the practice
of making fire altars in square and
rectangular shapes. The treatise of Surya
Siddhanta describes amazing details of
Trigonometry, which were introduced to
Europe 1200 years later in the 16th
century by Briggs. All Hindu as well as
Buddhist mandalas and yantras are
complex forms of Geometrical shapes.
Bhaskaracharya otherwise known as

playing cards was known as Ganjifa cards


which were played in practically all royal
courts. This game is recorded to have
been played in Rajputana, Kashyapa
Meru (Kashmir), Utkala (Orissa) the
Deccan and even in Nepal. The Mughals
also patronized this game, but the
Mughal card-sets differed from those of
the ancient Indian royal courts.
According to Abul Fazal's (author of the
Ain-e-Akbari) description of the game,
the following cards were used. The first
was Ashvapati which means 'lord of
horses'. The Ashvapati which was the
highest card in, the pack represented the
picture of the king on horseback. The
second highest card represented a
General (Senapati) on horseback. After
this card come ten other with pictures of
horses from one to ten.
Another set of cards had the Gajapati
(lord of elephants) which represented the
king whose power lay in the number of
elephants. The other eleven cards in this
pack represented the Senapati and ten
others with a soldier astride an elephant.
Another pack has the Narpati, a king
whose power lies in his infantry. We also
had other cards known as the Dhanpati,
the lord of treasures, Dalpati the lord of
the squadron, Navapati, the lord of the
navy, Surapati, the lord of divinities,
Asrapati, lord of genii, Vanapati, the
king of the forest and Ahipati, lord of
snakes, etc.
On the authority of Abul Fazal we can say
that the game of playing cards had been
invented by sages in ancient times who
took the number 12 as the basis and
made a set of 12 cards. Every king had
11 followers, thus a pack had 144 cards.
The Mughals retained 12 sets having 96
cards. These Mughal Ganjifa sets have

Bhaskara is probably the most well known


mathematician of ancient Indian today.
Bhaskara wrote his famous Siddhanta
Siroman in the year 1150 A.D. It is
divided into four parts; Lilavati
(arithmetic), Bijaganita (a treatise on
algebra), Goladhyaya (celestial globe),
and Grahaganita (mathematics of the
planets). An Arabic Scholar Al Zabar
translated a Bhaskara's work Bijaganita
from Sanskrit. It was later known as
Algebra in European languages.
From India the sine function was
introduced to the Arab world in the 8th
century, where the term jya was
transliterated into jiba or jyb. Early Latin
translations of Arabic mathematical
treatises mistook jiba for the Arabic word
jaib, which can mean the opening of a
woman's garment at the neck.
Accordingly, jaib was translated into the
Latin sinus, which can mean "fold" (in a
garment), "bosom," "bay," or even
"curve." Hence our word "sine."
The word Algorithm was actually
supposed to be pronounced AlKhwarizmi, which was the name of an
eminent 9th century Arab scholar, who
played important roles in importing
knowledge on arithematic and algebra
from India to the Arabs. In his work, De
numero indorum (Concerning the Hindu
Art of Reckoning), it was based
presumably on an Arabic translation of
Brahmagupta where he gave a full
account of the Hindu numerals which was
the first to expound the system with its
digits 0,1,2,3,,9 and decimal place value
which was a fairly recent arrival from
India. The new notation came to be
known as that of al-Khwarizmi, or more
carelessly, algorismi; ultimately the
scheme of numeration making use of the
Hindu numerals came to be called simply

representations of diverse trades like


Nakkash painter, Mujallid book binder,
Rangrez, dyer, etc., In addition there
were also the Padishah-i-Qimash, king of
the manufacturers and Padishah-izar-iSafid, king of silver, etc.
Cards were known as Krida-patram in
ancient India. These cards were made of
cloth and depicted motifs from the
Ramayana, Mahabharata, etc. A tradition
carried on today with floral motifs and
natural scenery.
The pre-Mughal origin of the game of
cards is evident if we examine the
pattern of painting the cards. We also
find that despite the observation of Abul
Fazal that Akbar introduced the pack with
8 sets, we find that even earlier, in
Indian (Hindu) courts we have packs with
8, 9 and 10 sets apart from the usual 12.
The numbers were derived from the eight
cardinal directions Ashtadikpala, for the
pack with 8 set, from the nine planets
Navagraha for the one with 9 sets and
from ten incarnations Dashavatara of
Vishnu for the pack with 10 sets.
Themes from the Ramayana and
Mahabharata are painted on these
cards. The largest number of such cards
are to be found in Orrisa. The largest
number of such cards are to be found in
Orissa. The painters from Orissa have
represented various illustrations like the
Navagunjara, a mythical birdhuman
animal which was the form assumed by
Sri Krishna to test Arjuna's fidelity,
illustrations from the Dashavatata of
Vishnu are also portrayed.
All these cards were hand-made and
were painted in the traditional style. This
required considerable patience and hard
meticulous work. The kings usually

algorism or algorithm.

Atomic Theory
Sage Kanad, 600 BC, is recognized as
the founder of atomic theory, and
classified all the objects of creation into
nine elements (earth, water, light or fire,
wind, ether, time, space, mind and soul).
He stated that every object in creation is
made of atoms that in turn connect with
each other to form molecules nearly 2,500
years before John Dalton. Further, Kanad
described the dimension and motion of
atoms, and the chemical reaction with one
another.
These Indian ideas about atom and
atomic physics could have been
transmitted to the West during the
contacts created between India and West
by the invasion of Alexander.

Pythagorean Theorem or
Baudhayana Theorem?
Did you know that the so-called
Pythagoras Theorem that the square of
the hypotenuse of a right-angled triangle
equals to the sum of the square of the
other two sides was documented by the
famed Hindu mathematician Baudhayana
in his 6th century BC treatise called
Baudhayana Sulba Sutra?
Baudhayana states:
"The area produced by
the diagonal of a
rectangle is equal to
the sum of area
produced by it on two
sides."

commissioned painters to make cards as


per their preference. The commoners got
their cards made by local artists who
were to be ; found in urban and rural
areas. In order to -obtain the required
thickness a number of sheets of pieces of
cloth were glued together. The outlines of
the rim were painted in black and then
the figures were filled with colors.
As cards were played by members all
strata of society we find different types of
cards. Some cards were also made of
ivory, tortoise shell, mother of pearl,
inlaid or enameled with precious metals.
The cards were of different shapes; they
were circular, oval rectangular, but the
circular cards were more common. The
cards were usually kept in a wooden box
with a lid painted with mythological
figures. This art of handmade, hand
painted cards which had survived for
hundreds of years. gradually feel into
decay and became extinct with the
introduction of printed paper cards by the
Europeans in the 17-18th centuries. With
the extinction of the art of making and
painting cards also was erased the
memory that Indians ever had played the
game of cards with their own specific
representations of the Narapati, Gajapati
and Ashvapati.

Oldest Systematic
Language
Did you know that Sanskrit is the
worlds oldest systematic language?
The word sanskrita, meaning "refined"
or "purified," is the antonym of prakrita,
meaning "natural," or "vulgar." It is
made up of the primordial sounds, and is
developed systematically to include the

Hindsa
The Arabs borrowed so much from India
in the field of mathematics that even the
subject of mathematics in Arabic came to
known as Hindsa which means 'from
India' and a mathematician or engineer
in Arabic is called Muhandis which means
'an expert in Mathematics'.

The Value of Pi
Did you know that the ratio of the
circumference and the diameter of a
circle known as Pi (a value of
3.141592657932) was first
calculated by Hindus?
The Sanskrit text, by the famous Hindu
mathematician, Baudhayana in his
Baudhayana Sulbha Sutra of the 6th
century BC mentions this ratio as
approximately equal to 3. The Hindu
mathematician, Aryabhatta, in 499 AD
worked out the value of Pi to the fourth
decimal place as [3x (177/1250) =
3.1416]. In 825 AD one Arab
mathematician Mohammad Ibna Musa
said: This value has been given by the
Hindus [Indians] (62832/20,000 =
3.1416).

The Place Value System


The place value system is built into the
Sanskrit language and so whereas in
English we only use thousand, million,
billion etc, in Sanskrit there are specific
nomenclature for the powers of 10, most
used in modern times are dasa (10), sata
(100), sahasra (1,000=1K), ayuta (10K),

natural progressions of sounds as created


in the human mouth. Sanskrit was
considered as "Dev Bhasha",
"Devavani" or the language of the Gods
by ancient Indians. There are 54 letters
in the Sanskrit alphabet. Each has
masculine and feminine, shiva and
shakti. 54 times 2 is 108.

Mother of all Higher


Languages
The Sanskrit language has helped shape
many European languages including
French, German, Russian, and English. It
shows many ancient forms of words such
as father, through, shampoo,
trigonometry, and mouse, while guru,
pundit, dharma, bandh, and yoga are
among hundreds of Sanskrit words that
can now be found in the Oxford
dictionary.

Earliest and only known


Modern Language
Panini (c 400BC), in his Astadhyayi,
gave formal production rules and
definitions to describe Sanskrit grammar.
Starting with about 1700 fundamental
elements, like nouns, verbs, vowels and
consonents, he put them into classes.
The construction of sentences, compound
nouns etc. was explained as ordered
rules operating on underlying
fundamental structures. This is exactly in
congruence with the fundamental notion
of using terminals, non-terminals and
production rules of moderm day
Computer Science. On the basis of just
under 4,000 sutras (rules expressed as
aphorisms), he built virtually the whole
structure of the Sanskrit language. He
used a notation precisely as powerful as
the Backus normal form, an algebraic
notation used in Computer Science to

laksha (100K), niyuta (106=1M), koti


(10M), vyarbuda (100M), paraardha
(1012) etc. Results of such a practice
were two-folds. Firstly, the removal of
special importance of numbers. Instead of
naming numbers in grops of three, four or
eight orders of units one could use the
necessary name for the power of 10.
Secondly, the notion of the term "of the
order of". To express the order of a
particular number, one simply needs to
use the nearest two powers of 10 to
express its enormity.

34000th of a Second to 4.32


Billion Years
The ancient Hindus had given the world the
idea of the smallest and largest measuring
units of Time. Astonishingly, the ancient
Hindus used the following units of time:
Unit

Equivalent

Equivalent

Krati

34,000th of
a second

1 Truti

300th of a
second

2 Truti

1 Luv

2 Luv

1 Kshana

30 Kshana

1 Vipal

60 Vipal

1 Pal

60 Pal

1 Ghadi

24 minutes

2.5 Gadhi

1 Hora

1 Hour

24 Hora

1 Divas

1 Day

7 Divas

1 Saptaah

1 Week

4 Saptaah

1 Maas

1 Month

2 Maas

1 Rutu
(season)

6 Rutu

1 Varsh

1 Year

100 Varsh

1 Shataabda

1 Century

represent numerical and other patterns


by letters.
It is my contention that because of the
scientific nature of the method of
pronunciation of the vowels and
consonants in the Indian languages
(specially those coming directly from Pali,
Prakit and Sanskrit), every part of the
mouth is exercised during speaking. This
results into speakers of Indian languages
being able to pronounce words from any
language. This is unlike the case with say
native English speakers, as their tongue
becomes unused to being able to touch
certain portions of the mouth during
pronunciation, thus giving the speakers a
hard time to speak certain words from a
language not sharing a common ancestry
with English. I am not aware of any
theory in these lines, but I would like to
know if there is one.

Oral tradition of Vedic


Chanting is declared an
intangible heritage of
humanity by UNESCO
The oral tradition of Vedic chanting has
been declared an intangible heritage of
humanity by UNESCO. In a meeting of
jury members on November 7, 2003, at
Paris, Mr. Koichiro Matsuura, DirectorGeneral of UNESCO, declared the
chanting of Vedas in India an outstanding
example of heritage and form of cultural
expressions. The proclamation says that
in the age of globalization and
modernization when cultural diversity is
under pressure, the preservation of oral
tradition of Vedic chanting, a unique
cultural heritage, has great significance.

10
Shataabda

432
Sahasraabda

1
Sahasraabda

1 Yuga

10
Centuries
or 1000
Years

The Worlds Oldest Living


Civilization

4320
Centuries
or 432000
Years

Did you know that by 7500 B.C.


Bharat (India) already had advanced
townships with villages of mud-brick
houses?

43200
Centuries
Bharatvarsh (the Indian Subcontinent)
10 Yuga
1 Mahayuga
or 4320000
is home to the oldest civilization in the
Years
world. Mehrgarh which dates to 7500 BC
43200000
is the oldest city which predates the
Centuries
1000
Indus Valley Civilisation. Recently
1 Kalpa
or 4.32
Mahayuga
there have been archaeological findings
Billion
Years
off the coast of Gujarat in India which
confirm a submerged city which is the
India gave the largest measurement of time worlds oldest city. This Indian city dates
as 8.64 billion years.
back to 8000-9000BC.
The Gregorian calendar on your desk simply In 1922, excavations began at Mohenjoadds on one day for every 4 years and is not Daro (which means 'hill of the dead') in
in coherence with the movement of sun. But, the Indus Valley, four hundred miles
Hindu calendar is in coherence as the short south-west of Harappa, which revealed a
fall is corrected in the month itself by adding rich urban civilization that no one had
Adhikamasa as postulated by Maharshi
suspected. Incredibly, Mohenjo-Daro
Vishwamitra. Rig Veda 1.164.1, 2, 14 and proved to be as sophisticated as a later
15 describe sun's motion, ritus and colours of Greek or Roman city, built on mud-brick
spectrum. Kalyana varma, Varahamihira,
platforms to protect it from floods, with a
Jaimini, Vidyanatha Deekshita, Kalidasa,
grid-plan reminiscent of New York, and
Mantreshwara, Satyacharya, Venkatadri,
an impressive sewer system - not to
Parashara, Ramadayalu and Garga have
mention sit-down toilets. The size of the
immensely contributed for the development city indicated that it held about 40,000
of Hindu astrology.
people. The large number of female

Charaka Samhita: Worlds


first physician
The west is fond of proclaiming
Hippocrates (460 377 BC) as the father
of medicine, but way before him in 500
BC Maharishi Charaka wrote the famous
Charaka Samhita or Physicians
Handbook. The Charaka Samhita went
into great detail to describe human

statuettes found there suggested that a


female deity - probably the moon
goddess - was worshipped. Their seals
proved they possessed some form of
writing.
A scientifically planned towns and
buildings were part of the landscape and
about 300 settlements in a belt
extending 1,520 km from North to South
covering a million square kilometers have
been discovered, of which Harappa,
Mohenjo-Daro, Kalibangan, and Lothal

anatomy, pathology, diagnostic


procedures, and treatment for various
diseases. Charaka defined eight major
medical disciplines of Ayur Veda:
Shailya Chikitsa (surgery), Shaalakya
Chikitsa (head, eye, nose, throat),
Kaaya Chikitsa (mental health),
Kaumarbhrutya Chikitsa (pediatrics),
Agada Tantra (toxicology), Rasaayana
Tantra (Pharmacology), Vaajeekarna
Tantra (reproductive medicine). Charaka
also described the functions of the heart
and the circulatory system in great detail.
The Charaka Samhita was widely
translated in various languages and
Charaka was a respected medical
authority in both the Arab and Roman
empires.

Ayurveda - the Science of


Longevity
Ayurveda is the indigenous system of
medicine in India. Ayurveda literally
means 'the science of living'
(longevity). Ayu means "Life" and Veda
means "Knowledge". The origins of this
system of medicine are lost in the hoary
past, and the body of knowledge that
comes under the heading Ayurveda
constitutes ideas about diseases,
diagnosis and cure, which have been
accumulated over the ages past.
The feature that distinguishes this system
of medicines from other systems like
Allopathy and Homeopathy is that it is
solely based on herbs and herbal
compounds. The medical system of
Ayurveda draws heavily from the
doctrines developed in the CharakaSamahita. The main quality which
Ayurveda has borrowed from Charaka is
its aim of removing the cause for illness

are important sites. The towns were


designed with citadels and defensive
walls and the streets and lanes had
drains. Individual bathrooms and
lavatories were impressively drained into
a larger system. Well-developed docks
and store houses as well as bullock carts
for transportation were very popular.
The earliest recorded Indian mathematics
was found along the banks of the Indus.
Archaeologists have uncovered several
scales, instruments, and other measuring
devices. The Harappans employed a
variety of plumb bobs that reveal a
system of weights 27.584 grams. If we
assign that a value of 1, other weights
scale in at .05, .1, .2, .5, 2, 5, 10, 20,
50, 100, 200 and 500. These weights
have been found in sites that span a fivethousand-year period, with little change
in size.
Archaeologists also found a ruler made
of shell lines drawn 6.7 millimeters apart
with a high degree of accuracy. Two of
the lines are distinguished by circles and
are separated by 33.5 millimeters, or
1.32 inches. This distance is the so-called
Indus inch. 'In subsequent years, further
excavations along the 1800 miles of the
Indus river valley revealed more than
150 sites, half a dozen of the cities. The
whole area, from the Arabian sea to the
foothills of the Himalayas, was once the
home of a great civilization that rivaled
Egypt or Greece. To the east of the Indus
lies a vast desert, the Thar Desert. When
remains of towns were found in this
desert there was some puzzlement about
how they had survived in such arid
conditions. Then satellite photography
revealed the answer: the Thar Desert
was once a fertile plain, traversed by a
great river; there were even
unmistakable signs of canals. Now only a

and not just curing the disease itself. In


Ayurveda there are no such things as
instant relievers, pain killers or antibiotics.
The herbs used in Ayurvedic remedies do
not operate against the body's
metabolism, their effect is registered
gradually and hence there are minimum
side-effects. The constituents of Ayurvedic
medicines are largely based on organic
matter. The absence of fast registering
inorganic compounds which are at times
corrosive, contributes to the absence of
side-effects from Ayurvedic medicines.
Unique quality of Ayurveda is that it
uncovers and cures the root cause of
illness, it is safe, gentle and inexpensive,
it sees 6 stages of disease development
(where modern medicine only sees the
last two stages), it treats people in a
personalized manner according to their
dosha or constitution and not in any
generic manner.

small part of this river, the Ghaggar,


exists. Scholars concluded that the river
that had now vanished was the Sarasvati,
mentioned in the Vedic hymns.
It seemed that in the heyday of MohenjoDaro and Harappa, this whole plain was
one of the richest places in the world. At
a time when ancient Britons were
Bronze Age farmers, and the Greeks
were a few Mycenaean warrior
tribes, one of the world's greatest
civilizations flourished in the land of
the Indus and the Sarasvati. It seems
that some great catastrophe destroyed
this civilization some time after 1900 BC.
Evidence shows that the earth buckled,
due to the pressure of the tectonic plate
that has raised the Himalayas, and the
result was a series of earthquakes and
volcanic eruptions that literally caused
the rivers to sink into the ground. The
cost in human life must have been
appalling.

The Word-Numeral System


The word-numeral system was the logical
outcome of proceeding by multiples of
ten. Thus, in an early system, 60,799 is
denoted by the Sanskrit word sastim
(60), shsara (thousand), sapta (seven)
satani (hundred), navatim (nine ten
times) and nava (nine). Such a system
presupposes a scientifically based
vocabulary of number names in which the
principles of addition, subtraction and
multiplication are used. It requires:
1. the naming of the first nine digits
(eka, dvi, tri, catur, pancha, sat,
sapta, asta, nava);
2. a second group of nine numbers
obtained by multiplying each of the
nine digits in 1 by ten (dasa, vimsat,
trimsat, catvarimsat, panchasat,
sasti, saptati, astiti, navati): and

Mokshapat: Snake and


Ladder had its origin in
India
The game had its origin in India and was
called Moksha Patam or Parama
Padam or Mokshapat. It was used to
teach Hindu Dharma and Hindu values to
children. The British renamed it as
Snakes and Ladders.
The game was created by the 13th
century poet saint Gyandev. The ladders
in the game represented virtues and the
snakes indicated vices. The game was
played with cowrie shells and dices. Later
through time, the game underwent
several modifications but the meaning is
the same i.e good deeds take us to

3. a group of numbers which are


increasing integral powers of 10,
starting with 102 (satam sagasara,
ayut, niyuta, prayuta, arbuda,
nyarbuda, samudra, Madhya, anta,
parardha).
To understand why word numerals
persisted in India, even after the Indian
numerals became widespread, it is
necessary to recognize the importance of
the oral mode of preserving and
disseminating knowledge. An important
characteristic of written texts in India
from times immemorial was the sutra
style of writing, which presented
information in a cryptic form, leaving out
details and rationale to be filled in by
teachers and commentators. In short
pithy sentences, often expressed in verse,
the sutras enabled the reader to
memorize the content easily.

Yoga - Health of the Body


and Mind
Yoga is a system of exercises for physical
and mental nourishment. Apart from
being a system of exercise, an important
aspect of Yoga is that of self-discipline.
The fundamentals of Yoga were
systematically presented by Patanjali in
a treatise known as Yogasutras i.e. Yoga
Aphorisms. According to Patanjali, within
the human body there are channels called
Nadi and centres called Chakra. If these
are tapped, The energy hidden in the
body can be released. This energy is
called Kundalini. The release of Kundalini
enables the body to acquire many powers
which are normally beyond its capability.

heaven and evil to a cycle of re-births.


There are certain references which take
the game back to 2nd century BC.
In the original game square
12 was faith, 51 was
Reliability, 57 was
Generosity, 76 was
Indian
Knowledge, and 78 was
Snakes
Asceticism. These were the
and
squares were the ladder was
Ladders
game
found. Square 41 was for
(1700s
Disobedience, 44 for
AD)
Arrogance, 49 for Vulgarity,
52 for Theft, 58 for Lying, 62 for
Drunkenness, 69 for Debt, 84 for Anger,
92 for Greed, 95 for Pride, 73 for Murder
and 99 for Lust. These were the squares
were the snake was found. The Square
100 represented Nirvana or Moksha.
Also known as paramapadam, there
are a hundred squares on a board; the
ladders take you up, the snakes bring
you down. The difference here is that the
squares are illustrated. The top of the
ladder depicts a God, or one of the
various heavens (kailasa, vaikuntha,
brahmaloka) and so on, while the
bottom describes a good quality.
Conversely, each snakes head is a
negative quality or an asura (demon).
As the game progresses, the various
karma and samskara, good deeds and
bad, take you up and down the board.
Interspersed are plants, people and
animals.

Stages of Yoga

The game serves a dual purpose:


entertainment, as well as dos and donts,
divine reward and punishment, ethical
values and morality. The final goal leads
to Vaikuntha or heaven, depicted by
Vishnu surrounded by his devotees, or

Yama (universal moral commandments),

Kailasa with Shiva, Parvati, Ganesha and


Skanda, and their devotees. In this age

Niyama (self-purification through


discipline), Asana (posture), Pranayama
(breath-control), Pratyahara (withdrawal
of mind from external objects), Dharana
(concentration), Dhyana (meditation) and
Samadhi (state of super-consciousness) .
But though the Yogasutras were
formulated 2000 years ago, Yoga has
been practiced for countless generations,
it is only in the last few years that
scientists have begun to recognise the
powers of yoga. It has now been
established through experiments that by
practicing Yoga, several ailments can be
cured. Tests conducted on Yogis show that
they do acquire extraordinary physical
powers. For instance, they can live
without oxygen for a long time, they can
also adjust their metabolism if they have
to remain without food for long periods.
Yoga is being increasing applied in the
field of Physiotherapy.
There are innumerable asanas (poses) in
Yoga. Most of them derive their names
from the semblance of the body in those
poses to different animals and objects.
Yoga is a multifarious system, there are
various forms of discipline touching
different aspects of human life, which are
brought under the heading Yoga.

Asanas (Poses)
Matsyasana (pose like Fish pose),
Mayurasana (pose like Peacock),
Simhasana (pose like a Lion), Halasana
(pose like a Plough), Shavasana (pose
like a dead body, in absolute stillness).

Yoga Disciplines
Hathayoga (Bodily exercise), Gyanyoga
or Dnyanyoga (Exercise for the mind and
intellect), Karmayoga (Discipline in our

of moral and ethical degeneration, this


would be a good way of teaching values
to children who think they already know
more than their parents.
If paramapadam teaches moral values,
pallankuli develops skill and quick
thinking. Two players compete on a
board consisting of between seven and
twenty pits per player; each player has
to collect the coins or shells or seeds with
which the game is played, the player with
the maximum number being the winner.
There are nine variations of this game,
each a pandi, with regional, caste and
religious variations. It was very popular
among women and required a good
memory and alertness, as they had to
count and remember the number of coins
or seeds accumulated by the opponent.
The British took the game to England in
1892 and named it Snakes and
Ladders and changed it according to
Victorian values.

Hindu Kush
'Hindu Kush' means Hindu slaughter.
The Indian name for Hindu Kush
mountain range was 'Paariyaatra
Parvat'. Until 1000 A.D. the area of
Hindu Kush was a full part of Hindu
cradle. The name 'Hindu Kush' was given
by the muslim conquerors indicating the
Hindu genocide that took place in this
region.

Mother of Martial Arts


Do you know that Kalari is
considered to be the most complete

actions in daily life)

and scientific martial art and is the


mother of all martial arts?

Heliocentric Solar System


Ancient Hindus were first to suggest a
heliocentric solar system. Speed of light
was calculated as 1,85,016 miles/sec.
They had even calculated the distance
between Earth and Moon as 108
diameters of Moon and Earth and Sun as
108 diameters of Sun. These figures are
very close to the modern day values. All
these were stated several thousand years
before the famous scientist Galileo
postulated in the west that sun was the
center of the planetary system and Earth
was not flat, which was against the
prevailing religious doctrines and he died
during his house-arrest by clergy. Another
astonishing invention was ancient Hindus
calculated the age of Earth as 4.3 billion
years. The modern estimate is 4.5 billion
years. Just remember that the biblical age
of the Earth, as per Christians, is just
6,000 years!.

Life Cycles of the Universe


The Hindus view that the Universe has no
beginning or end, but follows a cosmic
creation and dissolution. Hindus are the
only one who propounds the idea of lifecycles of the universe. It suggests that
the universe undergoes an infinite number
of deaths and rebirths. Hindus views the
universe as without a beginning (anadi =
beginning-less) or an end (ananta = endless). Rather the universe is projected in
cycles. Hindu scriptures refer to time
scales that vary from ordinary earth day
and night to the day and night of the
Brahma that are a few billion earth years

Bodhidharma, a Buddhist monk from


India, introduced Kalari into China and
Japan in the 5th century. He taught this
art in a temple This temple is today
known as the Shaolin temple. The
Chinese called him Po-ti-tama. What he
taught has evolved into Karate and Kung
Fu. One can find a lot of similarities
among the three.
Thus Judo, Karate, Kung Fu and other
similar marshal arts which are today
identified with the far-east actually
originated from India. At times the
changes made in the original nature of
the Indian sport-forms were so many and
so fundamental that the game lost all
similarity with its original form in India.
Some Indian games were not transmitted
abroad and remained confined to India.
For instance we have Kabbadi, Kho-Kho,
AtyaPatya, Malkhamb, Gulli-danda, etc.,
which are being played today exclusively
in India. In this chapter we shall look into
how the games like Chess and Ludo
(Snakes and Ladders), the martial art of
Karate, and Playing cards had existed in
India for the past 2000 years and how in
some cases the indigenous form of the
game became totally extinct erasing the
fact that the game had ever been played
in India.
The teacher here is not looked upon only
as a coach as in western martial arts like
boxing and fencing. This relationship
between a teacher and student in Judo
and Karate could have its roots in the
Guru-Shishya tradition of India.

Dice

long.
According to Carl Sagan,
"A millennium before
Europeans were
wiling to divest
themselves of the
Biblical idea that the
world was a few
thousand years old,
the Mayans were
thinking of millions
and the Hindus
billions".
Continues Carl Sagan,
" is the only religion
in which the time
scales correspond to
those of modern
scientific cosmology."
Its cycles run from our ordinary day and
night to a day and night of the Brahma,
8.64 billion years long, longer than the
age of the Earth or the Sun and about half
the time since the Big Bang". One day of
Brahma is worth a thousand of the ages
(yuga) known to humankind; as is each
night." Thus each kalpa is worth one day
in the life of Brahma, the God of creation.
In other words, the four ages of the
mahayuga must be repeated a thousand
times to make a "day ot Brahma", a unit
of time that is the equivalent of 4.32
billion human years, doubling which one
gets 8.64 billion years for a Brahma day
and night. This was later theorized
(possibly independently) by Aryabhata in
the 6th century. The cyclic nature of this
analysis suggests a universe that is
expanding to be followed by contraction
a cosmos without end. This, according to
modern physicists is not an impossibility.

The dice is attributed to India by some


accounts. Some of the earliest
archaeological evidence of oblong dice
have been found in Harrapan sites such
as Kalibangan, Lothal, Ropar, Alamgirpur,
Desalpur and surrounding territories,
some dating back to the third millennium
BCE, which were used for gambling. The
oblong or cubical dice (aka) is the
precursor of the more primitive
vibhakasmall, hard nuts drawn
randomly to obtain factors of a certain
integer. Dicing is believed to have later
spread westwards to Persia, influencing
Persian board games. Early references to
dicing can be found in the ig Veda as
well as the newer atharvaveda.

A die found
in
excavations
at a
Harappan
period site.
Note that
the six is
not
opposite
the one.

First and Longest Poetry of


the World
The Ramayana is the first poetry of the
world. It is a glorious Sanskrit epic
written by the Divine Sage Valmiki. The
Ramayana begins with the author, Sage
Valmiki, asking Narada: "O Venerable
Rishi, please tell me, is there a perfect
man in this world who is virtuous, brave,

Raising 10 to the Power of


53 !
The highest prefix used for raising 10 to a
power in todays math is D for 10 to a
power of 30 (from Greek Deca). While, as
early as 100 BCE Indian Mathematicians
had exact names for figures upto 10 to
the power of 53.
1= Ekam =1, 10 was Dashakam, 100
was Shatam (10 to the power of 10),
1000 was Sahasram (10 power of 3),
10000 was Dashasahasram (10 power
of 4), 100000 was Lakshaha (10 power
of 5), 1000000 was Dashalakshaha (10
power of 6), 10000000 was Kotihi (10
power of 7)Vibhutangamaa (10
power of 51), Tallaakshanam (10 power
of 53).

Surgery: 300 different


types Operations, and 125
Surgical Instruments
The ancient Indians were also the first to
perform amputation, cesarean surgery
and cranial surgery. Sushruta as early as
600 BC used cheek skin to perform plastic
surgery to restore and reshape human
nose, ears, and lips with incredible
results. In his treatise, Shushruta
Samhita, he classified surgery into eight
types:
1.
2.
3.
4.
5.
6.
7.

aaharya (extracting solid bodies),


bhedya (excision),
eshya (probing),
lekhya (sarification),
vedhya (puncturing),
visravya (extracting fluids), and
sivya (suturing).

dutiful, truthful, noble, kind to all beings,


and adored by all?" Narada replies:
"Rama." The Ramayana has 24,000
Samkskrit verses. It later translated by
Kamban and Tulsi Das.
The Mahabarata is the longest poetry
ever written. Its 100,000 verses
encompass all facets of Dharma or
human way of life. It narrates the story
about the great Mahabarata war
between the noble Pandavas and their
evil cousins the Kauravas.

The Christian Chronology


From the days of British colonial rule we
have developed a habit of following the
Christian, or rather the Gregorian
calendar. The main difficulty of this
chronology is that, it originated only
nearly 2000 years ago and hence
incapable of accommodating events of
long past as stated above. The geological
time-frame invented by the scientists can
take care of events which happened not
earlier than 4 billion years ago. Most
importantly, the origin and the process of
counting months and years in Gregorian
calendar are in no way linked to
astronomical events. That is the reason
why it was a matter of dispute whether
the month February in 2000 A.D. would
contain 29 days or 30 days.
Some texts try to establish a link
between the birth of Jesus and the
beginning of this Christian or Gregorian
calendar and say that a bright star then
appeared in the sky. According to the
famous German astronomer Johannes
Kepler, it was a conjunction of the
planets Jupiter and Saturn in the zodiacal
sign Pisces and the incident look place in

Shushruta describes the details of more


than 300 operations such as extracting
solid bodies, excision, incision, probing,
puncturing, evacuating fluids and
suturing. Ancient Indians were also the
first to perform amputations, caesarean
and cranall surgeries with 42 surgical
processes. He worked with 125 kinds of
surgical instruments including scalpels,
lancets, needles, catheters, etc. Sushruta
even devised non-invasive surgical
treatments with the aid of light rays and
heat. Sushrata & his team conducted
complicated surgeries like cataract,
artificial limbs, cesareans, fractures,
urinary stones and also plastic surgery
and brain surgeries.

7 B.C. Most of the historians and


researchers on Jesus believe that he was
born somewhere in between 6 B.C. and
4 B.C. Moreover, the people who are
connected with the origin of this
calendar, possess entirely childish and
amusing ideas about the creation of this
universe and its antiquity. The Irish
prelate James Ussher in 17th century
openly declared, without giving any
thought to the possible repercussions of
his statement that this universe
originated on February 26, 4004 B.C. at
9 a.m. Even today most of them believe
that God created this earth and heaven
within six days from nothingness and
finished His task on that day.

Chanakya's Arthashstra describes


post-mortems, and Bhoja Prabandha
describes brain surgery, successfully
performed in 927 AD by two surgeons on
King Bhoja to remove a growth from his
brain. Usage of anesthesia was well
known in ancient India medicine. Detailed
knowledge of anatomy, embryology,
digestion, metabolism, physiology,
etiology, genetics and immunity is also
found in many ancient Indian texts.

In fact, the present Christian chronology


originated in 753 B.C., the year of
foundation of the city of Rome. In its
original form, 304 days divided into 10
months made a year and its present form
bears the testimony of this fact. At that
time the parting 4 months, namely
September, October. November and

Time taken for Earth to


orbit Sun
The famous Hindu mathematician,
Bhaskaracharya, in his treatise Surya
Siddhanta, calculated the time taken
for the earth to orbit the sun to nine
decimal places (365.258756484
days).
Bhaskaracharya rightly calculated the
time taken by the earth to orbit the sun
hundreds of years before the astronomer
Smart. His calculations was - Time taken

December were the 7th, 8th, 9th and 10th


months of the year and their names were
coined from septem, octo, novem and
decem, the Latin words for 7.8.9 and
10. This shows the colossal lack of
knowledge the Romans of that time had
about the solar cycle and one can easily
imagine the frightening disharmony it
had with the solar cycle. Here one should
also notice the striking similarity between
the Latin words for 7, 8, 9 and 10 as
mentioned above and the Sanskrit words
saptam, astam, navam and dasam.
This shows that the Romans learned the
art of counting from India. However, in
46 B.C. emperor Julius Caesar
introduced, quite arbitrarily, the month
July after his name and then emperor
Augustus Caesar introduced the month
August after his name and made 12

by earth to orbit the sun: ( 5th century )


365.258756484 days.

months or 355 days a year. Then


onwards it was called the Julian calendar.

Todays accepted measurement is


365.2564 days. Therefore, assuming that
todays figures are correct, it means that
Bhaskaracharya was off by only 0.0002%.

In 1582, Pope Gregori XIII, in his


endeavour to make it in harmony with
the solar cycle, introduced some vital
revisions. He introduced the practice of
counting a year normally of 365 days
and, a leap year of 366 days every fourth
year. Furthermore, he made the rule
that, a centesimal year will be treated as
a leap year only when it is divisible by
400. Despite all such efforts it was seen
that, a discrepancy of 11 days had crept
in the year 1700 A.D. A compromise was
made in that year by skipping those 11
days and in fact, 4th September was
counted as 15th September in that year.
In the Eastern Europe the said correction
was done in 1917, when the discrepancy
reached 13 days. According to the old
calendar the Bolshevik revolution in
Russia took place in October, but in
November after correction. That is the
reason why the Communists some times
call it the Great October Revolution and
some times the Great November
Revolution. It is important to note here
that, there is no scope of occurrence of
such a discrepancy in Hindu calendar
because months and years are counted
here according to actual position of the
sun in the sky. However, in 1752, only 5
years before the battle of Pal, this
Gregorian calendar was adopted as the
royal calendar of Britain and with the
gradual expansion of the British Empire,
it ultimately acquired the present status
of an international calendar. So, one
should notice that the Gregorian calendar
has achieved the status of an
international calendar not due to its
superior scientific basis but due to
military success of its followers.

Chakras Centers of
Consciousness
Humans have fourteen great nerve
centers in the physical body, in the astral
body and in the body of the soul. These
centers are called chakras in Sanskrit,
which means "wheel." These spinning
vortices of energy are actually regions of
mind power, each one governing certain
aspects of our inner being. Together, they
are the subtle components of all people.
When inwardly perceived, they are vividly
colorful and can be heard by sages and
mystics. When awareness flows through
any one or more of these regions, the
various functions of consciousness
operate, such as memory, reason and
willpower. In any one lifetime, one may
predominantly be aware in two or three
centers, thus setting the pattern for the
way one thinks and lives. One develops a
comprehension of these seven regions in
a natural sequence, the perfection of one
leading logically to the next. Thus, though
we may not psychically be seeing spinning
forces within ourself, we nevertheless
mature through memory, reason,
willpower, cognition, universal love, divine
sight and spiritual illumination.
There are six chakras above the
muladhara, which is located at the base of
the spine. When awareness is flowing
through these chakras, consciousness is in

the higher nature. There are also seven


chakras below the muladhara, and when
awareness is flowing through them,
consciousness is in the lower nature.
Through personal sadhana, prayer,
meditation, right thought, speech and
action and love of God, we lift our own
consciousness and that of others into the
chakras above the muladhara, bringing
the mind into the higher nature. The
functions of the chakras are aspects of
our being that we use every day. In the
same way, we use our arms and hands
everyday without thinking. The chakras do
not awakenthey are already awakened
in everyone.

Bharatanatyam
Bharatanatyam is amongst the oldest of
the classical dance forms of India, with a
history that goes back more than two
thousand years. Integrating elements of
music, theater, poetry, sculpture, and
literature, this multi-dimensional art has
come down through the centuries, as part
of a dynamic, vital, living tradition, that
offers infinite scope for understanding and
exploring the body, mind and spirit.

Bhaskaracharya's Law of
Gravity
Did you know that the famous Hindu
astronomer, Bhaskaracharya in his Surya
Siddhanta wrote:
"Objects fall on the
earth due to a force of
attraction by the
earth. Therefore, the
earth, planets,

The oldest book in the


library of humans is the
Rigveda
The existence of the Vedas go beyond
recorded history and are said to be
passed down from the Gods to the great
seers of Bharat. For many human
generations the Vedas were passed on
through word of mouth, until finally
documented by the great Rishis and
Swamis.
'The Vedas are
written in Sanskrit, a
complex language
that Sir William
Jones - in 1786 demonstrated to be
related to Greek,
Latin, German and
Celtic (giving rise to
the expression 'IndoEuropean
languages'). And if
the Vedas speak of
the Sarasvati River,
then it would seem
clear that they were
written before about
2000 BC, and not
later than 1500 BC, as
scholars originally
believed. And if - as
seems likely Sanskrit was the
language of the
Aryans, then it was
also clear that they
could not have
invaded as late as
1500 BC.
There are four major collections of Vedic
hymns - the Rig-Veda, the Samaveda,
the Yajurveda and the Atharvaveda, of

constellations, moon
and sun are held in
orbit due to this
attraction."
It was not until 1687, 1200 years later did
Issac Newton "rediscover" the Law of
Gravity.
In Surya Siddhanta, dated 400-500 AD,
the ancient Hindu astronomer
Bhaskaracharya states,
"Objects fall on the
earth due to a force of
attraction by the
earth. Therefore, the
earth, planets,
constellations, moon,
and sun are held in
orbit due to this
force."
Approximately 1200 years later (1687
AD), Sir Isaac Newton rediscovered this
phenomenon and called it the Law of
Gravity.

Hindu Klagaan
(chronologies) is the
Oldest in the World!
According to Indian tradition or Hindu
Klagaan, three chronologies are in
currency. Firstly, the Kali era or
Kalyabda, which has begun from the
present Kaliyuga and hence it is 5107
years old. Secondly, the Kalpbda which
has begun with the present Svetavrha
Kalpa, and hence it is 1,971,221, 107
years old. And thirdly, the Ssbda,
which has begun with the creation of this
universe and hence it is
155,521,971,221,107 years old. One

which the Rigveda is recognized as the


oldest and most important.
In the 1980's, a Vedic scholar, David
Frawley, observed that the hymns of the
Rigveda are full of an oceanic symbolism
that seems to argue that they sprang
from the maritime culture - which
certainly contradicted the assumption
that the Aryans came from somewhere in
central Europe. He also noted hymns that
spoke of the 'ancestors' as coming from
across the sea, having been saved from
the great flood.
Studying the astronomical references in
the Vedic hymns, Frawley concluded that
one reference to a summer solstice in
Virgo indicated a date of about 4000 BC,
while a reference to a summer solstice in
Libra pointed to about 6000 BC. He also
concluded that the authors of the Vedas
were familiar with the precession of the
equinoxes. These revolutionary ideas
were set out in a book called Gods,
Sages and Kings (1991).

The Game of Chess


The game of chess was invented in India
and was originally called Ashtapada
(sixty-four squares).
"Ashtapada" Sanskrit for spider -"a
legendary being with eight legs" was
played with dice on an 8x8 checkered
board. There were no light and dark
squares like we see in today's chess
board for 1,000 years. Other Indian
boards included the 1010 Dasapada
and the 99 Saturankam.
Later this game came to be
known as chaturanga. The
Sanskrit name Chaturanga

should notice that. Kalyabda is fit for


narrating historical events of recent past
while Kalpbda and Sstbda are suitable
for narrating much older cosmological,
geological, geographical, biological and
other events such as the creation of this
earth, creation of the sun, beginning of
life on earth and so on. So the scientists
may find in them the most suitable
alternative to the geological time frame
which they are now extensively using for
describing such older events.
Today, there are many chronologies, much
older than the Christian chronology,
extant in the world, as shown below:
Chronology

Antiquity in years

Roman

2,753

Greek

3,576

Turkish (new)

4,294

Chinese (new)

4,360

Hindu
(Kalyabda)

5,106

Jewish

5,764

Iran (new)

6,008

Turkish (old)

7,610

Egyptian

28,667

Iran (old)

189,971

Chinese (old)

96,002,301

Hindu
(Kalpbda)

1,971,221,106

Hindu
(Sbda)

155,521,971,221,106

So a rational mind may ask despite


having so many older chronologies, why
the shortest of them, the Christian
chronology has been given the status of
an international calendar? Why the 21st
birth centenary of a person is to be
observed as the 21st century of the entire
world? If a genuine thought is given to
the matter, without any racial, regional,

Krishna means 'quadripartite' the


and Radha
four angas (divided into four
playing
parts). The earliest known
chaturanga
on an 8x8form of chess is two-handed
chaturanga, Sanskrit for "the 4
Ashtpada.

branches of the army." Like


real Indian armies at that time, the
pieces were called elephants, chariots,
horses and foot soldiers. Unlike modern
chess, chaturanga was mainly a game of
chance; results depended on how well
you rolled the dice.
Chaturanga is well
recognized as the
earliest form of chess.
Played on an authentic
cloth game surface by 2,
Map showing
3 or 4 players,
origin and
Chaturanga combines
diffusion of
chess from
the basic strategy of
India to Asia,
chess with the dynamic
Africa, and
challenge of chance as
Europe, and
each move is determined
the changes
in the native
by the random roll of
names of the
wooden dice. There is
game in
evidence of chaturanga
corresponding
having been played with
places and
time.
dice, which is still not
uncommon, although it
involved more skill than chance in this
version. In fact, Yudhishthira and
Duryodhana, in the Mahabharata,
played a version of chaturanga using a
dice. The game Chaturanga was a battle
simulation game which rendered Indian
military strategy of the time.
In 600 AD this game was learned by
Persians who named it Shatranj. Shatranj
is a foreign word among the Persians and
the Arabians, whereas its natural
derivation from the term Chaturanga is
obvious. Again affix the Arabic name for
the bishop, means the elephant, derived
from alephhind, the Indian elephant.

political, sectorial or religious prejudice,


the Hindu alone deserves the right to be
treated as the calendar of the world, since
it is the oldest and based entirely
astronomical science. So, it carries much
more scientific sense in saying that we
have entered the 52nd century of
Kalyabda in 1998, than in saying that we
have entered the 21st century of the
Christian calendar in 2001.

References

Even the word 'checkmate' is derived


from the Persian term Shah Mat which
means 'the king is dead!'. The Sanskrit
translation of this term would be Kshatra
Mruta. Another term viz. 'the rooks'
which is the name for one set of the
counters used in chess, originated from
the Persian term Roth which means a
soldier. The Persian term is derived from
the Indian term Rukh, which obviously
seems to have originated in the Sanskrit
word Rakshak which means a soldier
from Raksha which means 'to protect'.

About the introduction of this game into


Persia, the Encylopedia Britannica says
that the Persian poet Firdousi, in his
historical poem, the Shahnama, gives an
account of the introduction of Shatranj
Ancient root of Navigation into Persia in the reign of Chosroes I
Anushirwan, to whom came ambassadors
from the sovereign of Hind (India), with
The art of Navigation was born in the river
a chess-board and men asking him to
Sindhu 6000 years ago. The very word
solve the secrets of the game, if he could
Navigation is derived from the Sanskrit
or pay tribute. The king asked for seven
word 'Navgatih'. The word navy is also
days grace, during which time the wise
derived from Sanskrit 'Nou'.
men vainly tried to discover the secret.
Finally, the king's minister took the
pieces home and discovered the secret in
Invention of Decimal System
a day and a night.
HINDU SYSTEM OF TIME RECKONING,
indianresurgence.com

Did you know that Hindus gave us the


method of expressing numbers by means of a
decimal system?

The Encyclopedia Britannica


concludes that "Other
Persian and Arabian writers
state that Shatranj came
The so called Arabic numerals are actually Hindu
into Persia from India and
numerals and even many Arab mathematicians
there appears to be a
admit that. During the 700's, the Arabs learned
consensus of opinion that
Hindu arithmetic from scientific writings of the Chaturanga.
may be considered to settle
Hindus and the Greeks. Then, in the 800's, a
the question. Thus we have
Persian mathematician wrote a book that was
the game passing from the Hindus to the
translated into Latin about 300 years later. This
Persians and then to the Arabians, after
translation brought the Hindu-Arabic numerals into
the capture V of Persia by the Caliphs in
Europe.
the 7th century, and from them, directly
or indirectly, to various parts of Europe,
Hindu mathematicians used a system based on 10.
at a time which cannot be definitely

fixed, but either in or before the 10th


century. That the source of the European
game is Arabic is clear enough, nor
merely from the words "check" and
"mate", which are evidently from Shah
mat ("the king is dead"), but also from
the names of some of the pieces.
The Hindus had symbols for each number from one
Local Variations
to nine. They had a name for each power of 10,
and used these names when writing numerals. For
Tamil variations of chaturanga are
example, Hindus wrote "1 sata, 3 dasan, 5" to
puliattam (goat and tiger game), where
represent the number we write as 135. They wrote
careful moves on a triangle decide
"1 sata, 5" for the number we write as 105. Hindus
whether the tiger captures the goats or
found a way of eliminating place names. They
the goats escape; the nakshatraattam
invented the symbol shunya (meaning empty),
or star game where each player cuts out
which we call zero. With this symbol, they could
the other; and dayakattam with four,
write "105" instead of "1 sata, 5."
eight or ten squares, a kind of ludo.
Variations of the dayakattam include
The largest numbers the Greeks and the Romans
dayakaram, the North Indian pachisi
used were 106 whereas Hindus used numbers as
and champar. There are many more
big as 1053 (i.e 10 to the power of 53) with
local variations.
specific names (Tallakshana) as early as
5000 B.C. during the Vedic period. Even today, the
largest used number is Tera: 1012 (10 to the
power of 12).
"It is India that gave us the
ingenuous method of
expressing all numbers by the
means of ten symbols, each
symbol receiving a value of
position, as well as an absolute
value; a profound and
important idea which appears
so simple to us now that we
ignore its true merit, but its
very simplicity, the great ease
which it has lent to all
computations, puts our
arithmetic in the first rank of
useful inventions, and we shall
appreciate the grandeur of this
achievement when we
remember that it escaped the
genius of Archimedes and

Apollonius, two of the greatest


minds produced by antiquity."
French mathematician
Pierre Simon Laplace (1749 1827)

Metallurgy
India was the world-leader in Metallurgy
for more than 5,000 years. Gold jewelery
is available from 3,000 BCE. Brass and
bronze pieces are dated back to 1,300
BCE. Extraction of zinc from ore by
distillation was used in India as early as
400 BCE while European William Campion
patented the process some 2,000 years
later. Copper statues can be dated back to
500 CE. There is an iron pillar in Delhi
dating back to 400 CE that shows no sign
of rust or decay.
The earliest know book on metallurgy was
known to be written by Nagarjuna in 10th
century. The book Rasaratnanakara
addresses various metallurgical topics
such as:
Preparation of liquids (rasas) such
as Mercury
Extraction of metals like Gold, Silver,
Tin, and Copper from their ores and
their purification
The processes of liquefaction,
distillation, sublimation, and
roasting
India was invaded by Mohammedans
during the time of Nagarjuna. It is
possible that Nagarjuna's texts fell into
the hands of the invaders, who could have
transmitted these Indian Metallurgical
sciences to the outside world.

Quotes
Albert Einstein:
We owe a lot to the Indians, who taught us how to count, without
which no worthwhile scientific discovery could have been made.
Mark Twain:
India is the cradle of the human race, the birthplace of human speech,
the mother of history, the grandmother of legend and the great grand
mother of tradition.
French scholar Romain Rolland:
If there is one place on the face of earth where all dreams of living
men have found a home from the very earliest days when man began
the dream of existence, it is India.

References
Bibliography
1. Colin Wilson, From Atlantis to the Sphinx. Virgin Books, London. 1997.
2. Alternatives to the Idiot Box, by Nanditha Krishna

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