Science & Its Cyclic Apocalypse : In Vedic Continuity

A friend asked me to forward a feature I wrote here about use of atomic weapons in ancient India. At first, I couldn’t find it; then, I couldn’t access my PC and earned his wrath for non-response. Hence a fresh layout herebelow, but with a broader context.


First : Some quotes … and anecdotes.

You will find elsewhere more about distorted presentations of Indian History and the civilisational heritage of the land by early Indologists, prejudiced to colonial agenda, and by subsequent uncritical historians who found their doctorates under that spelled line of motivated thought.

Francois Voltaire : “… everything has come down to us from the banks of the Ganges.”


German philosopher Arthur Schopenhauer : I “…encounter [in the Vedas] deep, original, lofty thoughts… suffused with a high and holy seriousness.”

American writer Ralph Waldo Emerson read the Vedas daily : “I owed a magnificent day to the Bhagavat-Gita

American thinker Henry David Thoreau : “In the morning I bathe my intellect in the stupendous philosophy of the Bhagavad Gita… in comparison with which… our modern world and its literature seems puny and trivial.”

So great were Emerson and Thoreau’s appreciation of Vedantic literatures that they became known as the American transcendentalists. Their writing is suffused with Vedic thought.

British mathematician, logician and philosopher Alfred North Whitehead : “Vedanta is the most impressive metaphysics the human mind has conceived.”

Julius Robert Oppenheimer, who led the US atomic bomb project : “The Vedas are the greatest privilege of this century.”

When, upon the first test detonation, Oppenheimer was asked if this is the first nuclear explosion, he significant reesponse was, “Yes, in modern times.”

Raised a Jew, Oppenheimer always gave the book – Bhagavad Gita – as a present to his friends and kept a copy on the shelf closest to his desk. At Franklin Roosevelt’s funeral he read a passage from the Gita chapter 17 verse 3 “Man is a creature whose substance is faith, what his faith is, he is”.

Lin Yutang, Chinese scholar and author : “India was China’s teacher in trigonometry, quadratic equations, grammar, phonetics… “.


In 1996 in the Egyptian Museum in Cairo, Italian mineralogist Vincenzo de Michele spotted an unusual yellow-green gem in the middle of one of Tutankhamun’s necklaces. The jewel was tested and found to be glass, but intriguingly it is older than the earliest Egyptian civilization. Geologists traced its origins to unexplained chunks of glass found scattered in the sand in a remote region of the Sahara Desert.  But the glass is itself a scientific enigma. Pieces of Libyan Desert Glass weighing as much as 16 pounds are found in an oval area measuring approximately 130 by 53 kilometers. The clear-to-yellowish-green pieces are concentrated in sand-free corridors between north-south dune ridges. How did it get to be there; and, who or what made it ?

An Austrian astrochemist Christian Koeberl established that the glass had been formed at a temperature so hot that there could be only one known natural cause : a meteorite impact on Earth. But there are no signs of such an impact even in satellite images.

The desert glass has another possible terrestrial explanation – one that includes atomic war or other high-tech process capable of melting the sand.

The first atomic bomb detonation by the United States in New Mexico at the Trinity test site in 1945 created so much heat that it formed a crater of radioactive green glass in the desert, about 10 feet deep and over 1,000 feet in width.

The same type of glass is found in India. In fact, it is found in Ireland, Scotland, France, Turkey and other places as well. There is no logical explanation for the vitrification of stone forts and cities, except from an atomic blast. Futhermore, at Mohenjo-Daro, a well planned city laid to a grid, with a plumbing system superior to those used in Pakistan and India today, the streets were littered with “black lumps of glass.” These globs of glass were identified to be clay pots that had melted under intense heat !

Incredible as it may seem, these vitrified lumps of clay or sand are likely evidence of atomic explosions. When excavations of Harappa and Mohenjo-Daro reached the street level, archeologists discovered skeletons scattered about the cities, many still holding hands and sprawling in the streets as if an instant, horrible doom had occured. People were just lying, unburied, in the streets of the city from thousands of years ago, yet undecayed or eaten by wild animals, with no apparent cause to explain the apocalypse.

These skeletons are among the most radioactive ever found, on par with those at Hiroshima and Nagasaki. At one site, Soviet scholars found a skeleton which had a radioactive level 50 times greater than normal. While the skeletons have been carbon-dated to 2500 BC, we must keep in mind that carbon-dating involves measuring the amount of radiation left. When atomic explosions are involved, the tests make them seem much younger.

Other cities have been found in northern India that show indications of explosions of great magnitude. One such city, found between the Ganges and the mountains of Rajmahal, seems to have been subjected to intense heat. Huge masses of walls and foundations of the ancient city are fused together, literally vitrified ! And since there is no indication of a volcanic eruption or meteorite impact at this city, or at Mohenjo-Daro and other places revealing similar evidence, the intense heat to melt clay, stone or sand can only be explained by an atomic blast or some other unknown weapon.

A heavy layer of radioactive ash in Rajasthan, India, covers a three-mile-square area, ten miles west of Jodhpur. The radiation is still so intense that the area is highly dangerous. It was reported : “For some time it has been established that there is a very hight rate of birth defects and cancer affliction in the area, where levels of radiation registered are so high that the Indian government has cordoned off the region. One researcher estimates that the nuclear bomb used at the place sometime in antiquity was about the size of the ones dropped on Japan in 1945.”

Another curious sign of an ancient nuclear war in India is a giant crater near Bombay. The nearly circular 2,154-metre-diameter Lonar craterlocated 400 kilometers northeast of Bombay and age-tested to be less than 50,000 years old, could be related to nuclear warfare. No trace of any meteoric material, etc., has been found at the site or in the vicinity, and this is the world’s only known “impact” crater in basalt. Indications of great shock (from a pressure exceeding 600,000 atmospheres) and intense, abrupt heat (indicated by basalt glass spherules) can be ascertained from site conditions.

* * *

According to the magazine Free World, archaeologists digging in the ancient Euphrates Valley have uncovered a layer of agrarian culture 8,000 years old, a layer of herdsman culture much older, and a still older caveman culture. Recently, they reached another layer of fused green glass. It is well known that atomic detonations on or above a sandy desert will melt the silicon in the sand and turn the surface of the Earth into a sheet of glass. But if sheets of ancient desert glass can be found in various parts of the world, does it mean that atomic wars were fought in the ancient past or, at the very least, that atomic testing occurred in the dim ages of history ?

This is a startling theory but one that is not lacking in evidence, as such ancient sheets of desert glass are a geological fact. Lightning strikes can sometimes fuse the sand, meteorologists contend, but this is always in a distinctive root-like pattern. These strange geological oddities are called fulgurites and manifest as branched tubular forms rather than as flat sheets of fused sand.

Therefore, lightning is largely ruled out as the cause of such finds by geologists, who prefer to hold onto the theory of a meteor or comet strike as the cause. The problem with this theory is that there is usually no crater associated with these anomalous sheets of glass.

Brad Steiger and Ron Calais report in their book, Mysteries of Time and Space, that Albion W. Hart, one of the first engineers to graduate from Massachusetts Institute of Technology, was assigned an engineering project in the interior of Africa. While he and his men were travelling to an almost inaccessible region, they first had to cross a great expanse of desert.

“At the time he was puzzled and quite unable to explain a large expanse of greenish glass which covered the sands as far as he could see,” writes Margarethe Casson in an article on Hart’s life in the magazine Rocks and Minerals (no. 396, 1972).

She then goes on to mention: “Later on, during his life he passed by the White Sands area after the first atomic explosion there, and he recognized the same type of silica fusion which he had seen fifty years earlier in the African desert.”

The Vitrified Forts of Scotland

One of the great mysteries of classical archaeology is the existence of many vitrified forts in Scotland. Are they also evidence of some ancient atomic war ? Maybe, maybe not. There are said to be at least 60 such forts throughout Scotland. Among the most well-known are Tap o’Noth, Dunnideer, Craig Phadraig (near Inverness), Abernathy (near Perth), Dun Lagaidh (in Ross), Cromarty, Arka-Unskel, Eilean na Goar, and Bute-Dunagoil on the Sound of Bute off Arran Island. Another well-known vitrified fort is the Cauadale hill-fort in Argyll, West Scotland.

One of the best examples of a vitrified fort is Tap o’Noth, which is near the village of Rhynie in northeastern Scotland. This massive fort from prehistory is on the summit of a mountain of the same name which, being 1,859 feet (560 meters) high, commands an impressive view of the Aberdeenshire countryside. At first glance it seems that the walls are made of a rubble of stones, but on closer look it is apparent that they are made not of dry stones but of melted rocks !  What were once individual stones are now black and cindery masses, fused together by heat that must have been so intense that molten rivers of rock once ran down the walls.

Reports on vitrified forts were made as far back as 1880 when Edward Hamilton wrote an article entitled “Vitrified Forts on the West Coast of Scotland” in the Archaeological Journal (no. 37, 1880, pp. 227&endash;243). In his article, Hamilton describes several sites in detail, including Arka-Unskel :

At the point where Loch na Nuagh begins to narrow, where the opposite shore is about one-and-a-half to two miles distant, is a small promontory connected with the mainland by a narrow strip of sand and grass, which evidently at one time was submerged by the rising tide. On the flat summit of this promontory are the ruins of a vitrified fort, the proper name for which is Arka-Unskel.

The rocks on which this fort are placed are metamorphic gneiss, covered with grass and ferns, and rise on three sides almost perpendicular for about 110 feet from the sea level. The smooth surface on the top is divided by a slight depression into two portions. On the largest, with precipitous sides to the sea, the chief portion of the fort is situated, and occupies the whole of the flat surface. It is of somewhat oval form. The circumference is about 200 feet, and the vitrified walls can be traced in its entire length. We dug under the vitrified mass, and there found what was extremely interesting, as throwing some light on the manner in which the fire was applied for the purpose of vitrification. The internal part of the upper or vitrified wall for about a foot or a foot-and-a-half was untouched by the fire, except that some of the flat stones were slightly agglutinated together, and that the stones, all feldspatic, were placed in layers one upon another.

It was evident, therefore, that a rude foundation of boulder stones was first formed upon the original rock, and then a thick layer of loose, mostly flat stones of feldspatic sand, and of a different kind from those found in the immediate neighborhood, were placed on this foundation, and then vitrified by heat applied externally. This foundation of loose stones is found also in the vitrified fort of Dun Mac Snuichan, on Loch Etive.

Hamilton describes another vitrified fort that is much larger, situated on the island at the entrance of Loch Ailort.

This island, locally termed Eilean na Goar, is the most eastern and is bounded on all sides by precipitous gneiss rocks; it is the abode and nesting place of numerous sea birds. The flat surface on the top is 120 feet from the sea level, and the remains of the vitrified fort are situated on this, oblong in form, with a continuous rampart of vitrified wall five feet thick, attached at the SW end to a large upright rock of gneiss. The space enclosed by this wall is 420 feet in circumference and 70 feet in width. The rampart is continuous and about five feet in thickness. At the eastern end is a great mass of wall in situ, vitrified on both sides. In the centre of the enclosed space is a deep depression in which are masses of the vitrified wall strewed about, evidently detached from their original site.

Was the vitrification the result of design or accident ? How was the vitrification produced ? In this vitrification process, huge blocks of stones have been fused with smaller rubble to form a hard, glassy mass. Explanations for the vitrification are few and far between, and none of them is universally accepted.

One early theory was that these forts are located on ancient volcanoes (or the remains of them) and that the people used molten stone ejected from eruptions to build their settlements. This idea was replaced with the theory that the builders of the walls had designed the forts in such a way that the vitrification was purposeful in order to strengthen the walls. This theory postulated that fires had been lit and flammable material added to produce walls strong enough to resist the dampness of the local climate or the invading armies of the enemy. It is an interesting theory, but one that presents several problems. For starters, there is really no indication that such vitrification actually strengthens the walls of the fortress; rather, it seems to weaken them. In many cases, the walls of the forts seem to have collapsed because of the fires. Also, since the walls of many Scottish forts are only partially vitrified, this would hardly have proved an effective building method.

Janet and Colin Bord in their book, Mysterious Britain, speak of Maiden Castle to give an idea of the vast extent of this marvel of prehistoric engineering. It covers an area of 120 acres, with an average width of 1,500 feet and length of 3,000 feet, and it has been estimated… that it would require 250,000 men to defend it ! It is hard, therefore, to believe that this construction was intended to be a defensive position.

With 250,000 men defending a fort, we are talking about a huge army in a very organized society. This is not a bunch of fur-wearing Picts with spears defending a fort from marauding bands of hunter-gatherers. The questions remain, though. What huge army might have occupied these cliffside forts by the sea or lake entrances ? And what massive maritime power were these people unsuccessfully defending themselves against ?

The forts on the western coast of Scotland are reminiscent of the mysterious clifftop forts in the Aran Islands on the west coast of Ireland. Here we truly have shades of the Atlantis story, with a powerful naval fleet attacking and conquering its neighbors in a terrible war. It has been theorized that the terrible battles of the Atlantis story took place in Wales, Scotland, Ireland and England–however, in the case of the Scottish vitrified forts it looks as if these were the losers of a war, not the victors. And defeat can be seen across the land : the war dykes in Sussex, the vitrified forts of Scotland, the utter collapse and disappearance of the civilization that built these things. What long-ago Armageddon destroyed ancient Scotland ?

In ancient times there was a substance known through writings as Greek fire. This was some sort of ancient napalm bomb that was hurled by catapult and could not be put out. Some forms of Greek fire were even said to burn under water and were therefore used in naval battles. (The actual composition of Greek fire is unknown, but it must have contained chemicals such as phosphorus, pitch, sulphur or other flammable chemicals.)

Could a form of Greek fire have been responsible for the vitrification ? With siege machines, battleships and Greek fire, did a vast flotilla storm the huge forts and eventually burn them down in a hellish blaze ?

The evidence of the vitrified forts is clear : some hugely successful and organized civilization was living in Scotland, England and Wales in prehistoric times, circa 1000 BC or more, and was building gigantic structures including forts. This apparently was a maritime civilization that prepared itself for naval warfare as well as other forms of attack.


Vitrified Ruins in France, Turkey and the Middle East

Vitrified ruins can also be found in France, Turkey and some areas of the Middle East.

Vitrified forts in France are discussed in the American Journal of Science (vol. 3, no. 22, 1881, pp. 150-151) in an article entitled “On the Substances Obtained from Some ‘Forts Vitrifiés’ in France”, by M. Daubrée. The author mentions several forts in Brittany and northern France whose granite blocks have been vitrified. He cites the “partially fused granitic rocks from the forts of Château-vieux and of Puy de Gaudy (Creuse), also from the neighborhood of Saint Brieuc (Côtes-du-Nord)”. Daubrée, understandably, could not readily find an explanation for the vitrification.

Similarly, the ruins of Hattusas in central Turkey, an ancient Hittite city, are partially vitrified. The Hittites are said to be the inventors of the chariot, and horses were of great importance to them. It is on the ancient Hittite stelae that we first see a depiction of the chariot in use. However, it seems unlikely that horsemanship and wheeled chariots were invented by the Hittites; it is highly likely that chariots were in use in ancient China at the same time.

The Hittites were also linked to the world of ancient India. Proto-Indic writing has been found at Hattusas, and scholars now admit that the civilization of India, as the ancient Indian texts like the Ramayana have said, goes back many millennia.

In his 1965 book, The Bible as History, German historian Werner Keller cites some of the mysteries concerning the Hittites. According to Keller, the Hittites are first mentioned in the Bible (in Genesis 23) in connection with the biblical patriarch Abraham who acquired from the Hittites a burial place in Hebron for his wife Sarah. Conservative classical scholar Keller is confused by this, because the time period of Abraham was circa 2000-1800 BC, while the Hittites are traditionally said to have appeared in the 16th century BC.

Even more confusing to Keller is the biblical statement (in Numbers 13:29-30) that the Hittites were the founders of Jerusalem. This is a fascinating statement, as it would mean that the Hittites also occupied Ba’albek, which lies between their realm and Jerusalem. The Temple Mount at Jerusalem is built on a foundation of huge ashlars, as is Ba’albek. The Hittites definitely used the gigantic megalithic construction known as cyclopean–huge, odd-shaped polygonal blocks, perfectly fitted together. The massive walls and gates of Hattusas are eerily similar in construction to those in the high Andes and other megalithic sites around the world. The difference at Hattusas is that parts of the city are vitrified, and the walls of rock have been partly melted. If the Hittites were the builders of Jerusalem, it would mean that the ancient Hittite Empire existed for several thousand years and had frontiers with Egypt. Indeed, the Hittite hieroglyphic script is undeniably similar to Egyptian hieroglyphs, probably more so than any other language.

Just as Egypt goes back many thousands of years BC and is ultimately connected to Atlantis, so does the ancient Hittite Empire. Like the Egyptians, the Hittites carved massive granite sphinxes, built on a cyclopean scale and worshipped the Sun. The Hittites also used the common motif of a winged disc for their Sun god, just as the Egyptians did. The Hittites were well known in the ancient world because they were the main manufacturers of iron and bronze goods. The Hittites were metallurgists and seafarers. Their winged discs may in fact have been representations of vimanas — flying machines.

Some of the ancient ziggurats of Iran and Iraq also contain vitrified material, sometimes thought by archaeologists to be caused by the Greek fire. For instance, the vitrified remains of the ziggurat at Birs Nimrod (Borsippa), south of Hillah, were once confused with the Tower of Babel. The ruins are crowned by a mass of vitrified brickwork — actual clay bricks fused together by intense heat. This may be due to the horrific ancient wars described in the Ramayana and Mahabharata, although early archaeologists attributed the effect to lightning.

Vedic India

Several historical records claim that Indian culture has been around for literally tens of thousands of years. Yet, until 1920, all the “experts” agreed that the origins of the Indian civilization should be placed within a few hundred years of Alexander the Great’s expedition to the subcontinent in 327 BC. However, that was before several great cities like Harappa and Mohenjo-Daro (Mound of the Dead), Kot Diji, Kalibanga and Lothal were discovered and excavated. Lothal, a former port city now miles from the ocean, was discovered in Gujarat, western India, just in the late 20th century. These discoveries have forced archaeologists to push back the dates for the origin of Indian civilization by thousands of years — in line with what the Indians themselves have insisted all along.

A wonder to modern-day researchers, the cities were highly developed and advanced. The way that each city was laid out in regular blocks, with streets crossing each other at right angles and the entire city laid out in sections, gives archaeologists cause to believe that the cities were conceived as a whole before they were built–a remarkable early example of city planning. Even more remarkable is that the plumbing/sewage systems throughout the large cities were so sophisticated–superior to those found in Pakistan, India and many Asian countries today. Sewers were covered, and most homes had private toilets and running water. Furthermore, the water and sewage systems were kept well separated.

This advanced culture had its own writing, which has never been deciphered. The people used personalized clay seals, much as the Chinese still do today, to officialize documents and letters. Some of the seals found contain figures of animals that are unknown to us today, including an extinct form of the Brahman bull.

Archaeologists really have no idea who the builders were, but their attempts to date the ruins (which they ascribe to the “Indus Valley civilization”, also called “Harappan”) have come up with something like 2500 BC and older, but radiation from the wars apparently fought in the area may have thrown off the date.

The Rama Empire, described in the Mahabharata and Ramayana, was supposedly contemporaneous with the great cultures of Atlantis and Osiris in the West. Atlantis, well known from Plato’s writings and ancient Egyptian records, apparently existed in the mid-Atlantic and was a highly technological and patriarchal civilization. The Osirian civilization existed in the Mediterranean basin and northern Africa, according to esoteric doctrine and archaeological evidence, and is generally known as pre-dynastic Egypt. It was flooded when Atlantis sank and the Mediterranean began to fill up with water.

The Rama Empire flourished during the same period, according to esoteric tradition, fading out in the millennium after the destruction of the Atlantean continent. As noted above, the ancient Indian epics describe a series of horrific wars–wars which could have been fought between ancient India and Atlantis, or perhaps a third party in the Gobi region of western China. The Mahabharata and the Drona Parva speak of the war and of the weapons used: great fireballs that could destroy a whole city; “Kapila’s Glance”, which could burn 50,000 men to ashes in seconds; and flying spears that could ruin whole “cities full of forts”.

The Rama Empire was probably started by the Nagas (Naacals) who had come into India from Burma and ultimately from “the Motherland to the east”–or so Colonel James Churchward was told. After settling in the Deccan Plateau in northern India, they made their capital in the ancient city of Deccan, where the modern city of Nagpur stands today.

The empire of the Nagas apparently began to extend all over northern India to include the cities of Harappa, Mohenjo-Daro and Kot Diji (now in Pakistan), as well as Lothal, Kalibanga, Mathura and possibly other cities such as Benares, Ayodha and Pataliputra. These cities were led by “Great Teachers” or “Masters” who were the benevolent aristocracy of the Rama civilization. Today they are generally called “Priest-Kings” of the Indus Valley civilization, and a number of statues of these so-called gods have been discovered. In reality, these were apparently men whose mental and psychic powers were of a degree that seems incredible to most people of today. It was at the height of power for both the Rama Empire and Atlantis that the war allegedly broke out, seemingly because of Atlantis’s attempt to subjugate Rama.

According to the Lemurian Fellowship lesson materials, the populace surrounding Mu (Lemuria, which predated the other civilizations) eventually split into two opposing factions : those who prized practicality and those who prized spirituality. The citizenry, or educated elite, of Mu itself was balanced equally in these two qualities. The citizenry encouraged the other groups to emigrate to uninhabited lands. Those who prized practicality emigrated to the Poseid Island group (Atlantis), and those who prized spirituality eventually ended up in India. The Atlanteans, a patriarchal civilization with an extremely materialistic, technologically oriented culture, deemed themselves “Masters of the World” and eventually sent a well-equipped army to India in order to subjugate the Rama Empire and bring it under the suzerainty of Atlantis.

One account of the battle, related by the Lemurian Fellowship, tells how the Rama Empire Priest-Kings defeated the Atlanteans. Equipped with a formidable force and a “fantastic array of weapons”, the Atlanteans landed in their vailixi outside one of the Rama cities, got their troops in order and sent a message to the ruling Priest-King of the city that he should surrender. The Priest-King sent word back to the Atlantean General :

We of India have no quarrel with you of Atlantis.

We ask only that we be permitted to follow our own way of life.

Regarding the ruler’s mild request as a confession of weakness and expecting an easy victory — as the Rama Empire did not possess the technology of war or the aggressiveness of the Atlanteans — the Atlantean General sent another message :

We shall not destroy your land with the mighty weapons at our command, provided you pay sufficient tribute and accept the rulership of Atlantis.

The Priest-King of the city responded humbly again, seeking to avert war :

We of India do not believe in war and strife, peace being our ideal. Neither would we destroy you or your soldiers who but follow orders.

However, if you persist in your determination to attack us without cause and merely for the purpose of conquest, you will leave us no recourse but to destroy you and all of your leaders.

Depart, and leave us in peace.

Arrogantly, the Atlanteans did not believe that the Indians had the power to stop them, certainly not by technical means. At dawn, the Atlantean army began to march on the city. From a high viewpoint, the Priest-King sadly watched the army advance.

Then he raised his arms heavenward, and using a particular mental technique he caused the General and then each officer in order of rank to drop dead in his tracks, perhaps of some sort of heart failure. In a panic, and without leaders, the remaining Atlantean force fled to the waiting vailixi and retreated in terror to Atlantis.

Of the sieged Rama city, not one man was lost.

While this may be too fanciful to accept, the Indian epics go on to tell the rest of the horrible story, and things do not turn out well for Rama. Assuming the above story is true, Atlantis was not pleased at the humiliating defeat and therefore used its most powerful and destructive weapon — quite possibly an atomic-type weapon !

Consider these verses from the ancient Mahabharata :

…(it was) a single projectile
Charged with all the power of the Universe.
An incandescent column of smoke and flame
As bright as the thousand suns
Rose in all its splendor… was an unknown weapon,
An iron thunderbolt,
A gigantic messenger of death,
Which reduced to ashes
The entire race of the Vrishnis and the Andhakas.

..The corpses were so burned
As to be unrecognizable.
The hair and nails fell out;
Pottery broke without apparent cause,
And the birds turned white.

After a few hours
All foodstuffs were infected…
…to escape from this fire
The soldiers threw themselves in streams
To wash themselves and their equipment.

In the way we traditionally view ancient history, it seems absolutely incredible that there was an atomic war approximately 10,000 years ago or thereabout. And yet, of what else could the Mahabharata be speaking ? Or is this just a poetic way to describe cavemen clubbing each other to death; after all, that is what we are told the ancient past was like !

Until the bombing of Hiroshima and Nagasaki, modern mankind could not imagine any weapon as horrible and devastating as those described in the ancient Indian texts. Yet they very accurately described the effects of an atomic explosion : Radioactive poisoning will make hair and nails fall out. Immersing oneself in water gives some respite, though is not a cure.

The two great ancient epics of India — Ramayana and Mahabharata —  speak of immense wars and military formations, theories of warfare and esoteric weaponry (c. 10,000 – 3000 BC), among other subjects. Traditionally, the authorship of the Mahabharata is attributed to Vyasa. With about one hundred thousand verses, long prose passages, or about 1.8 million words in total, the Mahabharata is roughly ten times the length of the Iliad and Odyssey combined, or about four times the length of the Ramayana. — Source : Wikipedia

The Indian Epics,  especially the MAHABHARATA, pick up the thread of the tale of devastation and destruction. Atlantis, rather displeased at its humiliating defeat, feigned that they were no longer interested in subjugating the Rama Empire (An Indian  Empire), even while deciding to annihilate the major cities using weapons of mass destruction. Sanskrit scholars  could  not comprehend what was being described in the Epics until the dropping  of the first atomic bombs on Japan. There are AUTHENTIC VERSES from the Indian Epics :
Gurkha, flying a swift and powerful vimana (fast aircraft)
hurled a single projectile (rocket) charged with the power
of the Universe (nuclear device).
An incandescent column of smoke and flame,
as bright as ten thousand suns, rose with all its splendor.
It was an unknown weapon, an iron thunderbolt, a gigantic
messenger of death, which reduced to ashes the entire race
of the Vrishnis and the Andhakas.
The corpses were so burned as to be unrecognizable.
Hair and nails fell out;
Pottery broke without apparent cause,
and the birds turned white.
…After a few hours all foodstuffs were infected…
…to escape from this fire the soldiers threw
themselves in streams to wash themselves and their
equipment.” — The Mahabharata



Reference to ancient Indian flying vehicles comes from ancient Indian sources, many in the well known Epics; and there are literally hundreds of others, most not yet translated into English from the old sanskrit.

Few years ago, the Chinese discovered some sanskrit documents in Lhasa, Tibet, and sent them to the University of Chandigarh, India, to be translated. Dr. Ruth Reyna of the University said recently that the documents contain directions for building interstellar spaceships !

The Ramayana describes a Vimana as a double-deck, cylindrical aircraft with portholes and a dome. It flew with the speed of the wind and gave forth a humming noise. Ancient Indian texts on Vimanas are so numerous. The ancient Indians wrote entire flight manuals on the control of various types of Vimanas.

An ancient manuscript – Vimanas : The Secret Of Constructing Aeroplanes — describes Vimanas which will not break, cannot be cut, will not catch fire, and cannot be destroyed. Also the secret of making planes motionless, making planes invisible. hearing conversations and other sounds in enemy planes… The secret of receiving photographs of the interior of enemy planes… The secret of ascertaining the direction of enemy planes approach… The secret of making persons in enemy planes lose consciousness… The secret of destroying enemy planes…

“The pilot is one who knows the secrets.” Bodhaanada : Scientists say that there are 32 secrets of the working of the Vimaana. A pilot should acquaint himself thoroughly with them before he can be deemed competent to handle the aeroplane. He must know the structure of the aeroplane, know the means of its take off and ascent to the sky, know how to drive it and how to halt it when necessary, how to maneuver it and make it perform spectacular feats in the sky without crashing.

Those secrets given in Rahashya Lahari and other works by Lalla and other masters, are described thus :

“The pilot should have had training in maantrica and taantrica, kritaka and antaraalaka, goodha or hidden, drishya and adrishya or seen and unseen, paroksha and aparoksha, contraction and expansion, changing shape, look frightening, look pleasing, become luminous or enveloped in darkness, deluge or pralaya, vimukha, taara, stun by thunderstorm din, jump, move zig-zag like serpent, chaapala, face all sides, hear distant sounds, take pictures, know enemy maneuver, know direction of enemy approach, stabdhaka or paralyse, and karshana or exercise magnetic pull.



Sanskrit texts are filled with references to Gods who fought battles in the sky using Vimanas equipped with weapons as deadly as any we can deploy in our more enlightened times. There is a passage in the Ramayana which reads :
The Puspaka car that resembles the Sun and belongs to my brother was brought by the powerful Ravan;
that aerial and excellent car going everywhere at will…. that car resembling a bright cloud in the sky.
“.. and the King [Rama] got in, and the excellent car at the command of the Raghira,
rose up into the higher atmosphere.”

In the Mahabharatra, we learn that an individual named Asura Maya had a Vimana measuring twelve cubits in circumference, with four strong wheels. The poem is a veritable gold mine of information relating to conflicts between gods who settled their differences apparently using lethal weapons as lethal. Apart from ‘blazing missiles’, the poem records the use of other deadly weapons. ‘Indra’s Dart’ operated via a circular ‘reflector’; when switched on, it produced a ‘shaft of light’ which, when focused on any target, immediately ‘consumed it with its power’.

The Ramayana and  the  Mahabharata seem like science  fiction.   Not only did aircraft exist such as Vimanas and Vailxi (as the Atlantian craft are called),  they  had  nuclear  weapons.

“It was a weapon) so powerful that it could destroy the earth
in an instant  A great soaring sound in smoke and flames
And on it sits death…” – The Ramayana

This quotation comes from the translation by N. Dutt in 1891 : “At Rama’s behest the magnificent chariot rose up to a mountain of cloud with a tremendous din..” We cannot help notice that not only is a flying object mentioned again but also that the chronicler talks of a tremendous din.

Here is another passage from the Mahabharata : “Bhisma flew with his Vimana on an enormous ray which was as brilliant as the sun and made a noise like the thunder of a storm.” ( C.Roy 1899).

Even imagination needs something to start off. How can the chronicler give graphic and vivid descriptions that presuppose at least some basis for him to imagine rockets and the knowledge that such a vehicle can ride on a ray and cause a terrifying thunder ?

Certain numerical data in the Mahabharata are so precise that one gets the impression that the author was writing from first-hand knowledge. Though full of revulsion, he describes a weapon that could kill all warriors who wore metal on their bodies. If the warriors learned about the effect of this weapon in time, they tore off all the metal equipment they were wearing, jumped into a river and thoroughly washed everything they were wearing or had come in contact with. Not without reason, as the author explains, for the weapons made the hair and nails fall out.

Dense arrows of flame, like a great shower, issued forth upon creation, encompassing the enemy…

A thick gloom swiftly settled upon the Pandava hosts.
All points of the compass were lost in darkness.
Fierce wind began to blow upward, showering dust and gravel.

Birds croaked madly… the very elements seemed disturbed.
The earth  shook,  scorched  by the terrible violent heat of this weapon.
Elephants burst into flame and ran to and fro in a frenzy…
over a vast area, while other animals crumpled to the ground and died.
From all  points  of  the compass  the  arrows  of  flame  rained
continuously and fiercely. — The Mahabharata

In the Samarangana Sutradhara whole chapters are devoted to describing airships whose tails spout fire and quicksilver. A passage from the Mahabharata is bound to make us think :

It was as if the elements had been unleashed. The sun spun round. Scorched by the incandescent heat of the weapon, the world reeled in fever. Elephants were set on fire by the heat and ran to and fro in a frenzy to seek protection from the terrible violence. The water boiled, animals died, the enemy was mown down, and the raging of the blaze made the trees collapse in rows as in a forest fire.

The elephants trumpeted fearfully and sank dead to the ground over a vast area. Horses and war chariots were burnt up and the scene looked like the aftermath of a conflagration. Thousands of chariots were destroyed, then deep silence descended on the sea.

The winds began to blow and the earth grew bright. It was a terrible sight to see. The corpses of the fallen were mutilated by the terrible heat so that they no longer looked like human beings. Never before have we seen such a ghastly weapon and never before have we heard of such a weapon. (C. Roy 1889).

Subject Related : The Mahabharata, Book 8 : Karna Parva, Kisari Mohan Ganguli, tr. [1883-1896]

The quote “It was an unknown weapon, an iron thunderbolt, a gigantic messenger of death, which reduced
to ashes the entire race of the Vrishnis and the Andhakas.” is actually found in Section 1 of Mausala Parva.


The Indian Emperor Ashoka started a “Secret Society of the Nine Unknown Men” …
These great Indian scientists/king were supposed to catalogue the many sciences. Ashoka kept their work secret because he was afraid that the advanced science catalogued by these men, culled from ancient Indian sources, would be used for evil purposes and war, which Ashoka was strongly against, having been converted to Buddhism after defeating a rival army in a bloody battle.
The “Nine Unknown Men” wrote a total of nine books, presumably one each.
One of the books was “The Secrets of Gravitation !”
This book, known to historians, but not actually seen by them dealt chiefly with “gravity control.” It is presumably still around somewhere, kept in a secret library in India, Tibet or elsewhere (maybe in North America). One can understand Ashoka’s reasoning for wanting to keep such knowledge a secret : He must have been aware of the devastating wars using such advanced vehicles and other “futuristic weapons” that had destroyed the ancient Indian “Rama Empire” and during the Great Bharata War.

Dr. Reyna said that on board these machines, which were called “Astras”, the ancient Indians could have sent a detachment of men onto any planet, according to the document, which is thought to be thousands of years old. The manuscripts were also said to reveal the secret of “antima”, “the cap of invisibility”, and “garima” — “how to become as heavy as a mountain of lead.” Naturally, Indian scientists did not take the texts very seriously, but then became more positive about their value when the Chinese announced that they were including certain parts of the data for study in their space program ! This was one of the first instances of a government admitting to be researching anti-gravity.

The manuscripts did not say definitely that interplanetary travel was ever made but did mention, of all things, a planned trip to the Moon, though it is not clear whether this trip was actually carried out. However, one of the great Indian epics, the Ramayana, does have a highly detailed story in it of a trip to the moon in a Vimana (or “Astra”), and in fact details a battle on the moon with an “Asvin” (or Atlantean”) airship.

This is but a small bit of recent evidence of anti-gravity and aerospace technology used by Indians. To really understand the technology, we must go much further back in time. The so called “Rama Empire” of Northern India and Pakistan developed at least fifteen thousand years ago on the Indian subcontinent and was a nation of many large, sophisticated cities, many of which are still to be found in the deserts of Pakistan, northern, and western India. Rama cities existed, apparently, parallel to the Atlantean civilization in the mid- Atlantic Ocean, and were ruled by “enlightened Priest-Kings”. The seven greatest capital cities of Rama were known in classical Hindu texts as The Seven Rishi Cities. According to ancient Indian texts, people had flying machines called “Vimanas.” There seems to be no doubt that Vimanas were powered by some sort of “anti-gravity.” Vimanas took off vertically and were capable of hovering in the sky, like a modern helicopter. Bharadvaj – the Wise – refers to no less than seventy authorities and 10 experts of air travel in antiquity. These sources are now lost.

Vimanas were kept in a Vimana Griha, a kind of hanger, and were sometimes said to be propelled by a yellowish-white liquid, and sometimes by some sort of mercury compound, though writers seem confused in this matter. It is most likely that the later writers on Vimanas, wrote as observers and from earlier texts, and were understandably confused on the principle of their propulsion. The “yellowish- white liquid” sounds suspiciously like gasoline, and perhaps Vimanas had a number of different propulsion sources, including combustion engines and even “pulse-jet” engines. It is interesting to note, that the Nazis developed the first practical pulse-jet engines for their V-8 rocket “buzz bombs.” Hitler and the Nazi staff were exceptionally interested in ancient India and Tibet and sent expeditions to both these places yearly, starting in the 30′s, in order to gather esoteric evidence, and perhaps it was from these people that the Nazis gained some of their scientific information!

According to the Drona Parva, part of the Mahabarata, and the Ramayana, one Vimana described was shaped like a sphere and borne along at great speed on a mighty wind generated by mercury. It moved going up, down, backwards and forwards as the pilot desired. In another Indian source, the Samar, Vimanas were “iron machines, well-knit and smooth, with a charge of mercury that shot out of the back in the form of a roaring flame.” Another work called the Samarangana Sutradhara describes how the vehicles were constructed. It is possible that mercury did have something to do with the propulsion, or more possibly, with the guidance system. Curiously, Soviet scientists have discovered what they call “age old instruments used in navigating cosmic vehicles” in caves in Turkestan and the Gobi Desert. The “devices” are hemispherical objects of glass or porcelain, ending in a cone with a drop of mercury inside. Possibly, ancient Indians flew around in these vehicles, all over Asia, and to the Atlantis and South America.

Writing found at Mohenjodaro in Pakistan (presumed to be one of the “Seven Rishi Cities of the Rama Empire”) and still undeciphered, has also been found in one other place in the world : Easter Island ! Writing on Easter Island, called Rongo Rongo writing, is also undeciphered and uncannily similar to the Mohenjodaro script. Was Easter Island an air base for the Rama Empire’s Vimana route ? The Vedas, ancient Hindu poems, thought to be the oldest of all the Indian texts, describe Vimanas of various shapes and sizes : the ahnihotra vimana with two engines, the elephant-vimana with more engines, and other types named after the kingfisher, ibis and other animals. Unfortunately, Vimanas, like most scientific discoveries, were ultimately used for war. Atlanteans used their flying machines, Vailixi, a similar type of aircraft, to literally try and subjugate the world, if Indian texts are to be believed. The Atlanteans, known as “Asvins” in the Indian writings, were apparently even more advanced technologically than the Indians, and certainly of a more war-like temperament.

Although no ancient texts on Atlantean Vailixi are known to exist, some information has come down through esoteric, “occult” sources, which describe their flying machines. Similar, if not identical to Vimanas, Vailixi were generally “cigar shaped” and had the capability of manoeuvering underwater as well as in the atmosphere or even the outer space. Other vehicles, like Vimanas, were saucer shaped, and could apparently also be submerged. According to Eklal Kueshana, author of “The Ultimate Frontier,” in an article he wrote in 1966 : Vailixi were first developed in Atlantis 20,000 years ago, and the most common ones are “saucer shaped, of generally trapezoidal cross- section, with three hemispherical engine pods on the underside. They use a mechanical antigravity device driven by engines developing approximately 80,000 horse power.”


 Some  Reflections

From :

My previous article in The Canadian , in which I reflected upon my book Worlds Before Our Own, provoked dozens of inquiries from readers. LINK Some stated that one of the cable channels — some thought it was the History Channel; others, Discovery; still others, National Geographic — had presented “proof” that the “fused green glass” to be found in various areas had been created by meteoric air blasts rather than prehistoric nuclear wars.

I remain open to many theories of Earth‘s prehistory. One of those individuals prompted to write to me, who had the advantage of having actually read Worlds Before Our Own, stated that I present “in a clear and lucid style, information concerning anomalous archeological finds without the hyperbole usually associated with this type of material.”

While patches of “fused green glass” may in certain instances have been caused by air blasts from meteors, I wonder if such a natural phenomenon could have created all twenty-eight fields of blackened and shattered stones that cover as many as 7000 miles each in western Arabia. The stones are densely grouped, as if they might be the remains of cities, sharp-edged, and burned black. Experts have decreed that they are not volcanic in origin, but appear to date from the period when Arabia was thought to be a lush and fruitful land that suddenly became scorched into an instant desert.

What we know today as the Sahara Desert was once a tropical region of heavy vegetation, abundant rainfall, and several large rivers. Scientists have discovered areas of the desert in which soils which once knew the cultivated influence of plow and farmer are now covered by a thin layer of sand. Researchers have also found an enormous reservoir of water below the parched desert area. The source of such a large deposit of water could only have been the heavy rains from the period of time before a fiery devastation consumed the lush vegetation of the area.

On December 25, 2007, it was confirmed by a French scientist that excavations at the area of Khamis Bani Sa’ad in Tehema district of Hodeidah province have yielded over a thousand rare archaeological pieces dating back to 300,000 B.C.E. Before a dramatic climate change, the inhabitants at that time had been fishermen and had domesticated a number of animals no longer to be found in the region, including a species of horse currently found only in Middle Asia.

The Red Chinese have conducted atomic tests near Lob Nor Lake in the Gobi Desert, which have left large patches of the area covered with vitreous sand. But the Gobi has a number of other areas of glassy sand which have been known for thousands of years.

Albion W. Hart, one of the first engineers to graduate from Massachusetts Institute of Technology, was assigned a project in the interior of Africa. While he and his men were traveling to an almost inaccessible region, they had first to cross a great expanse of desert. At the time, he was puzzled and quite unable to explain a large area of greenish glass which covered the sands as far as he could see.

“Later on during his life,” wrote Margarethe Casson in Rocks and Minerals (No. 396, 1972), “he passed by the White Sands area after the first atomic explosion there, and he recognized the same type of silica fusion which he had seen fifty years earlier in the African desert.”

In 1947, in the Euphrates valley of southern Iraq, where certain traditions place the Garden of Eden and where the ancient inhabitants of Sumer encountered the man-god Ea, exploratory digging unearthed a layer of fused, green glass. Archaeologists could not restrain themselves from noting the resemblance that the several-thousand-year-old fused glass bore to the desert floor at White Sands, New Mexico, after the first nuclear blasts in modem times had melted sand and rock.

In the United States, the Mohave Desert has large circular or polygonal areas that are coated with a hard substance very much like opaque glass.

While exploring Death Valley in 1850, William Walker claimed to have come upon the ruins of an ancient city. An end of the large building within the rubble had had its stones melted and vitrified.

Walker went on to state that the entire region between the Gila and St. John rivers was spotted with ruins. In each of the ancient settlements he had found evidence that they had been burned out by fire intense enough to have liquefied rock. Paving blocks and stone houses had been split with huge cracks, as if seared by some gigantic cleaver of fire.

Perhaps even more than the large areas of fused green glass, I am intrigued by the evidence of vitrified cities and forts, such as those discovered by Walker.

There are ancient hill forts and towers in Scotland, Ireland, and England in which the stoneworks have become calcined because of the great heat that had been applied. There is no way that lightning could have caused such effects.

Other hill forts from the Lofoten Islands off northern Norway to the Canary Islands off northwest Africa have become “fused forts.” Erich A. von Fange comments that the “piled boulders of their circular walls have been turned to glass… by some intense heat.”

Catal Huyukin in north-central Turkey, thought to be one of the oldest cities in the world, appears, according to archaeological evidence, to have been fully civilized and then, suddenly, to have died out. Archaeologists were astonished to find thick layers of burned brick at one of the levels, called VIa. The blocks had been fused together by such intense heat that the effects had penetrated to a depth more than a meter below the level of the floors, where it carbonized the earth, the skeletal remains of the dead, and the burial gifts that had been interred with them. All bacterial decay had been halted by the tremendous heat.

When a large ziggurat in Babylonia was excavated, it presented the appearance of having been struck by a terrible fire that had split it down to its foundation. In other parts of the ruins, large sections of brickwork had been scorched into a vitrified state. Several masses of brickwork had been rendered into a completely molten state. Even large boulders found near the ruins had been vitrified.

The royal buildings at the north Syrian site known as Alalakh or Atchana had been so completely burned that the very core of the thick walls were filled with bright red, crumbling mud-bricks. The mud and lime wall plaster had been vitrified, and basalt wall slabs had, in some areas, actually melted.

Between India’s Ganges River and the Rajmahal Hills are scorched ruins which contain large masses of stone that have been fused and hollowed. Certain travelers who have ventured to the heart of the Indian forests have reported ruins of cities in which the walls have become huge slabs of crystal, due to some intense heat.

The ruins of the Seven Cities, located near the equator in the Province of Piaui, Brazil, appear to be the scene of a monstrous chaos. Since no geological explanation has yet been construed to fit the evidence before the archaeologists, certain of those who have investigated the site have said that the manner in which the stones have been dried out, destroyed, and melted provokes images of Sodom and Gomorrah.

French researchers discovered the evidence of prehistoric spontaneous nuclear reaction at the Oklo mine, Pierrelatte, in Gabon, Africa. Scientists found that the ore of this mine contained abnormally low proportions of U235 such as found only in depleted uranium fuel taken from atomic reactors. According to those who examined the mine, the ore also contained four rare elements in forms similar to those found in depleted uranium.

Although the modern world did not experience atomic power until the 1940s, there is an astonishing amount of evidence that nuclear effects may have occurred in prehistoric times leaving behind sand melted into glass in certain desert areas, hill forts with vitrified portions of stone walls, of the remains of ancient cities that had been destroyed by what appeared to have been extreme heat-far beyond that which could have been scorched by the torches of primitive armies. In each instance, the trained and experienced archaeologists who encountered such anomalous finds have stressed the point that none of these catastrophes had been caused by volcanoes, by lightning, by crashing comets, or by conflagrations set by humankind.

by Brad Steiger

Vedic Cosmology

Vedic Cosmology is yet another ancient Vedic science which can be confirmed by modern scientific findings and this is acknowledged by well known scientists and authors, such as Carl Sagan and Count Maurice Maeterlinck, who recognized that the cosmology of the Vedas closely parallels modern scientific findings.

Carl Sagan stated, “Vedic Cosmology is the only one in which the time scales correspond to those of modern scientific cosmology.”

Nobel laureate Count Maurice Maeterlinck wrote of: “a Cosmogony which no European conception has ever surpassed.”

French astronomer Jean-Claude Bailly corroborated the antiquity and accuracy of the Vedic astronomical measurements as “more ancient than those of the Greeks or Egyptians.” And that, “the movements of the stars calculated 4,500 years ago, does not differ by a minute from the tables of today.”

The ninety foot tall astronomical instrument known as Samrat Yantra, built by the learned King Suwai Jai Singh of Jaipur, measures time to within two seconds per day.

Cosmology and other scientific accomplishments of ancient India spread to other countries along with mercantile and cultural exchanges. There are almost one hundred references in the Rig Veda alone to the ocean and maritime activity. This is confirmed by Indian historian R. C. Majumdar, who stated that the people of the Indus-Sarasvata Civilization engaged in trade with Sooma and centers of culture in western Asia and Crete.

The Heliodorus Column and Cultural Links to India

An example of these exchanges is found in the inscriptions on the Heliodorus Column, erected in 113 B.C.E. by Heliodorus, a Greek ambassador to India, and convert to Vaisnavism, as well as the 2nd century B.C.E. Coins of Agathocles, showing images of Krishna and Balaram. These artifacts stand testimony that Sanatan Dharma predates Christianity.


This also confirms the link between India and other ancient civilizations such as Greece and shows that there was a continuous exchange of culture, philosophy and scientific knowledge between India & other countries. Indeed the Greeks learned many wonderful things from India.

Vedic Mathematics

Voltaire, the famous French writer and philosopher) stated that “Pythagoras went to the Ganges to learn geometry.” Abraham Seidenberg, author of the authoritative “History of Mathematics,” credits the Sulba Sutras as inspiring all mathematics of the ancient world from Babylonia to Egypt to Greece.

As Voltaire & Seidenberg have stated, many highly significant mathematical concepts have come from the Vedic culture, such as:

The theorem bearing the name of the Greek mathematician Pythagorus is found in theShatapatha Brahmana as well as the Sulba Sutra, the Indian mathematical treatise, written centuries before Pythagorus was born.

The Decimal system, based on powers of ten, where the remainder is carried over to the next column, first mentioned in the Taittiriya Samhita of the Black Yajurveda.

The Introduction of zero as both a numerical value and a place marker.

The Concept of infinity.

The Binary number system, essential for computers, was used in Vedic verse meters.

A hashing technique, similar to that used by modern search algorithms, such as Googles, was used in South Indian musicology. From the name of a raga one can determine the notes of the raga from this Kathapayadi system. (See Figure at left.)

For further reading we refer you to this excellent article on Vedic Mathematics.

Vedic Sound and Mantras

The Vedas however are not as well known for presenting historical and scientific knowledge as they are for expounding subtle sciences, such as the power of mantras. We all recognize the power of sound itself by it’s effects, which can be quite dramatic. Perhaps we all have seen a high-pitched frequency shatter an ordinary drinking glass. Such a demonstration shows that Loud Sounds can produce substantial reactions

It is commonly believed that mantras can carry hidden power which can in turn produce certain effects. The ancient Vedic literatures are full of descriptions of weapons being called by mantra. For example, many weapons were invoked by mantra during the epic Kuruksetra War, wherein the Bhagavad-gita itself was spoken.

The ancient deployment of Brahmastra weapons, equivalent to modern day nuclear weapons are described throughout the Vedic literatures. Additionally, mantras carry hidden spiritual power, which can produce significant benefits when chanted properly. Indeed, the Vedas themselves are sound vibrations in literary form and carry a profound message. Spiritual disciplines recommend meditational practices such as silent meditation, silent recitation of mantras and also the verbal repetition of specific mantras out loud.

A Clinical Test of the Benefits of Mantra Chanting was performed on three groups of sixty-two subjects, males and females of average age 25. They chanted the Hare Krsna Maha Mantra twenty-five minutes each day under strict clinical supervision.

Results showed that regular chanting of the Hare Krsna Maha Mantra reduces Stress and depression and helps reduce bad habits & addictions. These results formed a PhD Thesis at Florida State University.

Spiritual practitioners claim many benefits from Mantra Meditation such as increased realization of spiritual wisdom, inner peace and a strong communion with God and the spiritual realm. These effects may be experienced by following the designated spiritual path.


Most of the evidence given in this presentation is for the apara vidya or material knowledge of the Vedic literatures. The Vedas however, are more renowned for their para vidya or spiritual knowledge. And even superior is therealized knowledge of the Vedic rsis or saints — that which is beyond the objective knowledge of modern science — knowledge of the eternal realm of sat, cit ananda, eternality, blissfullness and full knowledge. But that is another presentation.

The Iron Pillar of Delhi

The Vedic literatures contain descriptions of advanced scientific techniques, sometimes even more sophisticated than those used in our modern technological world.

Modern metallurgists have not been able to produce iron of comparable quality to the 22 foot high Iron Pillar of Delhi, which is the largest hand forged block of iron from antiquity.

This pillar stands at mute testimony to the highly advanced scientific knowledge of metallurgy that was known in ancient India. Cast in approximately the 3rd century B.C., the six and a half ton pillar, over two millennia has resisted all rust and even a direct hit by the artillary of the invading army of Nadir Shah during his sacking of Delhi in 1737.


Cataclysmic changes in the Earth’s crust.

by Brad Steiger

I find myself now in the seventh decade of life still asking two questions that in one way or another the great majority of my 165 published books have sought to answer: 1.) Who are we as a species? 2.) What is our destiny?

The basic reason that I wrote Worlds Before Our Own (G.P. Putnam‘s Sons, 1978; Anomalist Books, 2007) is that I have always found it incredible that such sophisticated people as we judge ourselves to be, do not really know who we are.

Archaeologists, anthropologists, and various academicians who play the “origins of Man” game, reluctantly and only occasionally acknowledge instances where unique skeletal and cultural evidence from the prehistoric record suddenly appear long before they should — and in places where they should not. These irritating artifacts destroy the orderly evolutionary line that academia has for so long presented to the public. Consequently, such data have been largely left buried in site reports, forgotten storage rooms, and dusty archives where one suspects that there is a great deal of suppressed, ignored, and misplaced pre-historical cultural evidence that would alter the established interpretations of human origins and provide us with a much clearer definition of what it means to be human.

There is now a basic academic consensus that the “homo” lineage goes back at least three million years, and that an ancestor of modern man evolved about one million years ago. Homo Sapiens, the “thinking man,” (our own species), became the dominant planetary life form on a worldwide basis, about 40,000 years ago.

It is difficult enough to explain the sudden appearance of Homo Sapiens at that time, but it is an even more complex question to ponder why Neanderthal and Cro-Magnon man correspondingly disappeared. And academic warfare rages unceasingly over whether or not Neanderthal and our ancestors were two separate species or whether they interbred.

And just as scientists are adding to a growing body of evidence that humankind developed in Africa, a Hungarian excavation surrenders a Homo Sapiens skull fragment in a context more than 600,000 years out of alignment with the accepted calendar of man’s migrations across the planet. Hominid fossils are unearthed in Dmanisi, Georgia, indicative of 1.77 million years old; and a homind tooth found in Niocene deposits near the Maritsa River in Bulgaria is dated at seven million years old.

What happens to Darwinian evolution when there are such sites as the one in Australia, which yielded Homo Sapiens (modern man), Homo erectus (our million-year-old ancestor), and Neanderthal (our Stone Age cousin) in what appears to be a contemporaneous environment? Then there is the Tabun site where Homo Sapiens fragments were found in strata below (which means older than) classic Neanderthal bones. In August 2007, scientists dating fossils found in Kenya challenged the conventional view that Homo Habilis (1.44 million years) and Homo erectus (1.55 million years) evolved one after the other. Dating of new fossil evidence revealed that the two species lived side by side in Africa for almost half a million years.

Somewhere, in what would appear to be a biological and cultural free-for-all, there must lie the answer to that most important question: Who are we?

But just as we are trying our best to fit skeletal fragments together in a manner that will be found acceptable to what we believe we know about our origins, footprints are being found in stone, which, if they are what they appear to be, will make a total shambles of our accepted evolutionary calendar. In Pershing County, Nevada, a shoe print was found in Triassic limestone, strata indicative of 400 million years, in which the fossilized evidence clearly revealed finely wrought double-stitching in the seams.

Early in 1975, Dr. Stanley Rhine of the University of New Mexico announced his discovery of human-like footprints in strata indicative of 40 million years old. A few months before, a similar find was made in Kenton, Oklahoma. At almost the same time, a discovery of a footprint in stone was revealed in north-central Wisconsin.

In Death Valley, there is ample fossil and skeletal evidence to indicate that the desolate area was once a tropical Garden of Eden where a race of giants lived and fed themselves with palatable foods taken from the local lakes and forests.

To speak of a race of prehistoric giants in what is now the desert sands of Death Valley is simultaneously to refute the doctrine which decrees that man is a relative newcomer to the North and South American continents. While on the one hand, new radiocarbon dates demonstrate that the Bering Land Bridge and Cordilleran Ice Corridor were not passable until 9000 years ago, an increasing amount of physical evidence indicates that man was surely in this hemisphere much earlier than that recent date.

For one thing, corn, an American contribution to the dinner tables of the world, is said to be, at 9000 years, our oldest domesticated seed crop. Some agriculturist had to be in the Americas more than 9000 years ago in order to domesticate the seed. Ancient squash seeds, peanuts, and cotton balls dated at 8,500 years old found in Peru’s Nanchoc Valley constitute additional evidence that New World farming was well established. Conclusive proof that such ancient farmers did exist in the Americas was offered when a Humble Oil Company drill brought up Mexican corn pollen that was more than 80,000 years old.

The anomalous Indian blood seration and dentition, and the geographic distribution of the American Indian, demands an impossible genetic time scale in which to transform Asiatic immigrants to distinctive New World inhabitants.

Even if we attempt to keep some kind of peace with the accepted theories of New World habitation, we must grant more evolution in 40,000 years in North America than that which took place in more than one million years in Europe, Africa, and Asia.

Skulls found in California, which are clearly those of American Indians, have been dated at 50,000 years old. But we are left with another mystery. A 140,000 year old American Indian type skull (via metric analysis) has been found at an Iranian excavation site.

What of the lost Amerindian civilization of Cahokia, complete with pyramids and a great wall? One site, near the present city of St. Louis, may have contained a metropolis of more than 250,000 North American Indians.

And who constructed the mysterious seven-mile walls of the Berkeley and Oakland, California, hills?

And which pre-Mayan peoples engineered an elaborate waterworks in Yucatan to irrigate crops over 2000 years ago?

The Caracol Tower at Chichen Itza is a remarkable Mesoamerican observatory that seems to have correlated its findings with similar sites in North America, including Mesa Verde, Wichita, and Chaco Canyon.

One of the most heretical theories that I suggest in Worlds Before Our Own is that the cradle of civilization might possibly have traveled from the so-called New World to the Old. Now, in December 2007, years after Ruth Shady Solis found the ancient city of Caral, Peru, scientists have accepted the carbon dating of 2,627 B.C.E., thereby establishing the civilization in South America to be much older than the Harappa Valley towns and the pyramids of Egypt. Caral must now be recognized as “the mother of all civilizations,” the missing link of archaeology, the Mother City.

Scientific knowledge has seemingly been prized by the inhabitants of every culture, known and unknown. Rock engravings, which may be as old as 60 million years, depict in step-by-step illustrations an entire heart-transplant operation and a Cesarean section. The ancient Egyptians used the equivalent of contraceptive jelly and had urine pregnancy tests. The cement used in filling Mayan dental cavities still holds after 1500 years.

No fabric is supposed to have been found until Egypt produced cloth material 5000 years ago. How, then, can we deal with the Russian site which provides spindle whorls and patterned fabric designs more than 80,000 years old?

Not only did the ancient Babylonians appear to use sulphur matches, but they had a technology sophisticated enough to employ complex electrochemical battery cells with wiring. There is also evidence of electric batteries and electrolysis in ancient Egypt, India, and Swahililand.

Remains of a metal-working factory of over 200 furnaces was found at what is now Medzamor in Russian Armenia. Although a temperature of over 1780 degrees is required to melt platinum, some pre-Incan peoples in Peru were making objects of the metal. Even today the process of extracting aluminium from bauxite is a complicated procedure, but Chou Chu, famous general of the Tsin era (265-316 A.D.), was interred with aluminium belt fasteners on his burial costume.

Carved bones, chalk, stones, together with what would appear to be greatly ornamented ”coins,” have been brought up from great depths during well-drilling operations. A strange, imprinted slab was found in a coal mine. The artefact was decorated with diamond-shaped squares with the face of an old man in each ”box.” In another coal-mine discovery, miners found smooth, polished concrete blocks which formed a solid wall. According to one miner’s testimony. he chipped one block open only to find the standard mixture of sand and cement that makes up most typical building blocks of today.

A gold necklace was found embedded in a lump of coal. A metal spike was discovered in a silver mine in Peru. An iron implement was found in a Scottish coal-bed. Estimated to be millions of years older than man is believed to have existed. A metal, bell-shaped vessel, inlaid with a silver floral design was blasted out of solid rock near Dorchester, Massachusetts.

Two hypotheses may explain the presence of these perplexing artifacts: 1) that they were manufactured by an advanced civilization on Earth which, due either to natural or technological catastrophe, was destroyed before our world’s own genesis; 2) that they are vestiges of a highly technological civilization of extraterrestrial origin, which visited this planet millions of years ago, leaving behind various artifacts.

Even if a highly advanced extraterrestrial race might have visited this planet in prehistoric times, it seems unlikely such common, everyday items as nails, necklaces, buckles and vases would have been carried aboard a spacecraft deposited in such widely separated areas; for such artifacts have been found in North and South America, Great Britain, the whole of Europe, Africa, Asia, and the Mid-East.

In spite of the general unpopularity of catastrophism, there does seem to be a number of recently discovered “proofs” of ancient cataclysmic changes in the Earth’s crust which may account for the nearly total disappearance of these prehistoric worlds. Geological evidence indicates that these changes were both sudden and drastic might have completely overwhelmed and destroyed the early inhabitants and their cultures.

Perhaps the most potentially mind-boggling evidence of an advanced prehistoric technology that might have blown its parent-culture away is to be found in those sites which ostensibly bear mute evidence of prehistoric nuclear warfare.

Large areas of fused green glass and vitrified cities have been found deep in the strata of archaeological digs at Pierrelatte in Gabon, Africa; the Euphrates Valley; the Sahara Desert; the Gobi Desert; Iraq; the Mojave Desert; Scotland; the Old and Middle Kingdoms of Egypt; and south-central Turkey. In contemporary times, such material as fused green glass has only been known at nuclear testing sites (where the sand had melted to form the substance). It is quite unsettling to some to consider it possible that these sites provide evidence of a prehistoric nuclear war. At the same time, scientists have found a number of uranium deposits that appear to have been mined or depleted in antiquity.

If it is possible that nuclear annihilation of a global civilization did occur in prehistoric times, it seems even more urgent to learn who we really are before we find ourselves doomed to repeat the lessons left to us, by a world before our own.

For the past three decades miners at the Wonderstone Silver Mine near Ottosdal in the Western Transvaal, South Africa, have been extracting out of deep rock several strange metallic spheroids. So far at least 200 have been found. In 1979, several were closely examined by J.R. McIver, professor of geology at the University of Witwaterstand in Johannesburg, and geologist professor Andries Bisschoff of Potsshefstroom University.

The metallic spheroids look like flattened globes, averaging 1 to 4 inches in diameter, and their exteriors usually are colored steel blue with a reddish reflection, and embedded in the metal are tiny flecks of white fibers. They are made of a nickel-steel alloy which does not occur naturally, and is of a composition that rules them out, being of meteoric origin. Some have only a thin shell about a quarter of an inch thick, and when broken open are found filled with a strange spongy material that disintegrated into dust on contact with the air.

What makes all this very remarkable is that the spheroids were mined out of a layer of pyrophyllite rock, dated both geologically and by the various radio-isotope dating techniques as being at least 2.8 to 3 billion years old.

Adding mystery to mystery, Roelf Marx, curator of the South African Klerksdorp Museum, has discovered that the spheroid he has on exhibit slowly rotates on its axis by its own power, while locked in its display case and free of outside vibrations.

There may thus be an energy extant within these spheroids still operating after three eons of time. (

Technological Discontinuity Explained

The lack evidence of ancient world technologies are explained by numerous great wars and apocalyptical disasters that practically wiped out civilisations and pushed humanity, perhaps more than once, back into “stone age.”

A well-researched hypothesis regarding Vedic India around Mahabharata War is presented in couple of books recently published by author Krishna Udayshankar, under the series Aryavarta Chronicles. She touches upon the five great lines of dynastic evolution and at length about two : Firewrights and Firstborns. The former descend from Agni Angiras, in which all great inventors and innovators arise from time to time to equip humanity with a whole range of science and technology to enable and ease, farm and illuminate, construct and transport, mine and irrigate, forge and create, weave and weaponise.

However, after millenia of such developments, almost magically empowering in the eye of the rest of mankind, the series inevitably reduced to applications concentrated in weapon-making, potions for targeted killing and psychological disorientation, power for mass destruction, mastery on earth and in air, and such immense multipliers. In time, even while the economy exploded and wealth concentrated with few, most of these weaponry skills went on sale to higher bidders among kings and chiefs aspiring to positions with greater overlordship and bigger dominions.

That manifest drive for greed and power at multiple centres in the Indian subcontinent, from about 3500 BC, was a departure from the Sanatan values and way of life laid out by the Firstborns. Even before the developments culminated in the Great War, about 3100 BC, in which an estimated 1.66 billion people died over 18-day period [Mahabharata, Book 11 (Stri Parva), Chapter 26, Verses 9 &10] … it is hypothesised, the Firstborn scion Sage Parasher had begun a massive and concerted program to destroy the Firewrights, one and all, systematically with no-holds barred. That pogrom was continued with unabated enthusiasm by his son, Krishna Dvaipayana — the Great Vyasa, who however also set in place an effective organisation to catalogue, encode and record all knowledge then available, even those with the Firewrights.

It is conjectured, the Firewrights were wiped out before the War broke out and their weapons expended and amazing technological creations destroyed during the 18-day strife : the land laid waste and cities deserted. One can imagine … a civilisational start from scratch, practically.

Relevant Links :—mahabharata.html

Story Of Vedic Civilisation

How Ancient Is The Vedic Tradition

Dr Kenneth Chandler

Origins Of Vedic Civilisation

Other Approaches to Dating the Vedic Tradition

In an article entitled, “Birth of a Civilization,” in Archeology, January/February 1998, anthropologist Mark Kenoyer sums up decades of scientific research on the archeology of India and argues that the Rig Veda verses were known on the subcontinent sometime before 1500 BC, by communities in the northwest area of the subcontinent. This is, again, a minimal date, not an attempt to fix the time of the Vedic period at 1,500 BC.

Maurice Winternitz, a German scholar and author of the two volume History of Indian Literature, extensively re-examined the evidence for Muller’s dates in 1981, a decade before the movement to push back the dates of Vedic civilisation that started in the 1990s. Winternitz estimated how long it would have taken for the vast body of Vedic literature to form and develop before the Buddhist revival in 500 BC. He considered each of the major periods of Vedic literature and estimated a bare minimal time for the incubation of each. His estimate of 1900 years put the beginning of the Vedic tradition at sometime before 2,400 BC as a bare minimum.

The vast literature of the Rig Veda, the Brahmanans, the Aranyakas, the Upanishads, the Vedangas, the Upangas, the Puranans, the Itihasa, the systems of Ayur-Veda, Winternitz argued—each a huge body of literature—required a sustained incubation period that must have taken an extended period of time. Winternitz could not imagine that this had taken place in the short span of time that had been assigned for it to happen between 1,500 BC and 500 BC when Buddha lived. This, it must be emphasised again, was Winternitz’s estimate of a minimum time, and was not meant to fix the date of the Rig Vedic beginning.

The City Under the Sea : Dwarka

Undersea exploration of an ancient city about half a mile off the coast of Gujarat in India, in 1981, lead to the discovery a city that had been submerged since 1,600 BC. The city is well established to be Dwarka, an ancient city mentioned in the Mahabharata, the great epic of the late Vedic period of Itihasa. The Mahabharata describes Dwarka as built on land reclaimed from the sea. Boulders have been found under the fortified city walls, showing that it was the result of land reclamation. The Mahabharata also mentions that Krishna warned the residents of Dwarka that the city would be reclaimed by the sea. The discovery of a seal engraved with a three-headed animal at the Dwarka site corroborates a reference made in the Mahabharata that such a seal was given to the city. Seven nearby islands described in the Mahabharata have also been discovered.

  1. Since archeological research shows that the city was submerged around 1,600 BC, this would date the Mahabharata at least before 1,600 BC. Again this is a minimum time.

  1. Pottery found at the site, inscribed with the script of the Indus valley civilisation, has been established by thermo-luminescene tests to be about 3,530 years old.

  1. The Mahabharata was written toward the end of the classical Vedic period. If we accept Winternitz’s estimates a minimum of 1,500 years lapsed from the beginning of the Vedic period to the Mahabharata, then since Dwarka was submerged by 1,600, this would set the date of the Rig Veda back to before 3,100 BC. This again marks the minimum date of the Rig Veda, and should not be construed as a fixed date.

  1. The body of literature produced by Greece and Rome from Homer to Proclus spans roughly 1,300 years. The Vedic tradition produced an even larger body of literature from the beginning of the Rig Veda to the end of the classical period; so it would probably require at least 1,300 years for the Vedic tradition to generate a larger amount of literature. If we take 1,600 BC as the minimum date of the Mahabharata, this would put the beginning of the Vedic tradition sometime before 2,900 BC. If we take Wintenitz’s estimate of at least 1,900 years, this would put the beginning of the Rig Veda before 3,500 BC.

  2. Frawley and Rajaram, as well as many others, now put the date of the Mahabharata war at about 3,000 BC (Maharishi Mahesh Yogi also gives this date in his commentary on the Bhagavad Gita). If we add 1,900 years incubation time as Winternitz estimates, this would put the dates of the Rig Veda back before 4,900 BC.



Story Of Vedic Civilisation


How Ancient Is The Vedic Tradition

Dr Kenneth Chandler

Origins Of Vedic Civilisation

Summary : Euro-centrism and Objective Science

For years, theories of the origins of the Indo-European people were based on small bits of evidence that were used to make sweeping generalisations. The Euro-centric perspective so heavily biased the discussion that it became necessary for scientists of the later twentieth century to re-examine and re-balance the perspectives in order to remove long-standing misconceptions formed by two centuries of speculative mythmaking. When these misconceptions are eliminated by objective science, no evidence remains that the Veda tradition came to India from outside.

Now we come to our second main question, How long ago was the Veda first cognised ?

When did the Veda first come to be known in the civilisation of India ?

How far back in time does the Vedic tradition go ?

How Ancient is the Vedic Tradition ?

New Light on the Cradle of Civilization

A second myth that dies hard is that Vedic civilisation came into existence as recently as 1000 to 1200 BC. Many scholars today have come to think that these dates are ridiculously recent and that the Vedic tradition, meaning the tradition of reciting the Rig Veda and the Vedic literature, is far more ancient. Scholars of the nineteenth century, the highly venerated Max Muller for one, give dates as recently as 1,000 to 1,200 BC. These dates, like the Aryan invasion theory, are products of a Euro-centric bias. They were rooted in unsustainable religious, cultural, and ethnic assumptions that were not based on scientific evidence.

Max Muller, one of many Christian missionaries to India, was firmly committed to the Biblical account of creation. Muller accepted the date of creation given in the Bible at 4004 BC and the great flood at 1500 BC. This compelled him to date the Rig Veda much later in time than an impartial scientist would have done. Muller had to fit the entire Vedic tradition into a time-frame following the great flood, which Biblical scholars held took place in 1500 BC.

Muller wrote a letter to his wife, dated 1886, in which he said “The translation of the Veda will hereafter tell to a great extent on the fate of India and on the growth of millions of souls in that country. It is the root of their religion, and to show them what the root is, I feel sure, is the only way of uprooting all that has sprung from it during the last 3,000 years.” These are hardly the words of an unbiased scientist. No matter how great Muller’s scholarly reputation, we have to examine his reasons for setting the dates around 1000 to 12000 BC.

Muller recognised that the Vedic tradition had to exist before Buddha, who lived in about 500 BC and who reacted against the Vedic tradition. Muller and other Germanic scholars also noticed that the Agni Purana and other Vedic texts refer to Buddha, so they felt justified in thinking that the Vedic tradition was just a little more ancient than Buddhism, and they put the dates of the Vedic period roughly two-thirds of way between the great flood (the Biblical limit they accepted) and the time of Buddha.

* * * These dates were given by Max Muller. For a recent discussion of Muller’s projected dates, which were meant as a minimum of time, not an actual dating, see Maurice Winternitz, A History of Vedic Literature, Vol. 1, (New Delhi: Motilal Banarsidass, 1981), pp. 270-288, especially p.273.

Muller thus set the dates of the Vedic period at 1000 to 1200 BC. Muller reasoned that if Buddha rejected the Vedic tradition, the Rig Veda must have preceded him by at least several centuries, but it had to have started (in his opinion as a Bible scholar) after the great flood.

Even Muller, however, recognised that this was an estimate of a bare minimum of time that lapsed between the beginning of the Vedic tradition and the time of Buddha. However, it became commonplace for textbooks to give the dates of the Vedic tradition as 1,000 to 1200 BC, based on Muller’s minimum estimate. Soon these were known as the dates of the Rig Veda. This fixed Muller’s estimate of a bare minimum into an absolute date in the popular imagination. The mud of speculation had become sedimented into the brick of common belief.

Current evidence shows that the Veda did not began so recently in human history. The references to Buddha occur in very late additions and have no bearings on the far more ancient origins of the Vedic tradition.

Satellite Photographs and Geological Evidence :

Dates of the Saraswati River and the Rig Veda

More recent scholars, such as David Frawley, Dr. B.G. Siddharth, Dr. S.B. Roy, Professor Subhash Kak, Dr. N.R. Waradpande, and Bhagwan Singh have made a case for much more ancient dates of the Rig Veda. Also B.G. Tilak, P.C. Sengupta, Pargiter, Jagat Pati Joshi, Dikshit, K.N. Shastri, Sri Aurobindo, Hermann Jacobi, Dayananda Saraswati, among many others, have argued for its greater antiquity.

David Frawley and N.S. Rajaram, in Vedic “Aryans” and the Origins of Civilisation, put forward an interesting and compelling theory of the origins of Vedic civilisation. Drawing upon a large array of evidence from anthropology, satellite mapping, geology, historical linguistic, and literary study, they have helped discredit the old “Aryan invasion theory” to establish that the Rig Veda was of much greater antiquity than Muller had estimated.

One of the strongest bits evidence comes from satellite pictures of an ancient and dried riverbed that is now taken to be the former bed of the Saraswati river. This great river, described in the Rig Veda as a “mighty river flowing from the mountains to the sea,” has long since disappeared from the maps of modern India, until satellite pictures revealed the bed of an ancient river running from the Himalayas to the western gulf of the Indian ocean, roughly paralleling the course of the Indus, but lying to the east of the Indus.

* * * There is strong evidence that Max Muller mistakenly judged the antiquity of the Indian literature by thousands of years or more. His arbitrary and most unconvincing placement of Alexander’s visit to India to coincide with Chandragupta Maurya is widely disputed today by many scholars. According to the evidence of the Purunas, Buddha lived approximately 1,800 BC, and Chandragupta/Tekshasila (Taxila) was about 1700 BC. The university at Nalanda probably flourished around 1,400 BC.

Satellite photos and geological field studies show that the Saraswati ceased to be a perennial river and flowed only seasonally, sometime before 3,000 BC. Also, since approximately 1900 BC the Saraswati riverbed has been completely dry. This, as we will see, is a key piece of the scientific evidence to establish dates of the Rig Veda. The Saraswati was fed by melt from Himalayan glaciers, after the receding of the last ice age, about 8,000 BC. As the melting glacial waters ceased to feed the river, it changed its course, became a seasonal river, perhaps went underground, and eventually dried up in its former riverbed. Some, like Subhash Kak, hold that the change in thecourse of the river was due to an earthquake.

This event left the many settlements along the banks of the Saraswati to their fate. As the river dried, without water the agricultural settlements and villages were no longer sustainable. After this time, the towns and cities were re-located to the Indus river valley nearby and still later, after the droughts and flooding that came to the Indus and Saraswati valleys around 1,900 BC, settlers migrated further east to the Ganges river plain.

The Rig Veda mentions the Indus river quite often, and it mentions the Saraswati no less than 60 times. Its reference to the Saraswati as a “mighty river flowing from the mountains to the sea” shows that the Rig Vedic tradition must have been in existence long before 3,000 BC when the Saraswati ceased to be a “mighty river” and became a seasonal trickle. Frawley and Rajaram drew the conclusion that the Rig Veda must have been composed long before 3,000 BC.

Rajaram writes that the “Saraswati described in the Rig Veda belongs to a date long before 3,000 BC.” He concludes that, “All this shows that the Rig Veda must have been in existence no later than 3,500 BC.” He thus places the beginning of the Vedic tradition “long before 3,000 BC” and its end before 2,000 BC. The Mahabharata, the great epic of classical Sanskrit, describes the Saraswati as a seasonal river. Since the Saraswati dried up by 1900 BC, the Mahabharata would have to be dated at least before 1,900 BC. Since it was still a seasonal river in 3,000, Rajaram and Frawley put the date of the Mahabharata in 3,000 BC.

Evidence from French SPOT satellite and the Indo-French field study have changed this conception of history. By showing that the Saraswati ceased to be a mighty river long before 3,000 BC, they showed that the Rig Vedic civilisation must have begun long before the Saraswati became a seasonal trickle sometime long before 3,000 BC. If the Rig Vedic tradition began before 3,500 BC, this would date it earlier the civilizations of Egypt, Harappa, or Mesopotamia.

The next in series….


Story Of Vedic Civilisation

How Ancient Is The Vedic Tradition

Dr Kenneth Chandler

Origins Of Vedic Civilisation

Causes of the Decline of the Indus-Saraswati Civilisation

Geological and archeological evidence, it turns out, give strong evidence that a long and devastating drought followed by devastating floods led to the abandonment of the settlements along the banks of the Indus and Saraswati rivers in western India, ending an urban civilisation that had flourished, archeologists now surmise, sometime between 2,600 BC and 1,900 BC. The Indus and Saraswati valley civilisation was vast and widespread, and covered over 250,000 square miles, from north central India in the east all the way to the eastern edge of Iran in the west. There is no evidence to suggest that this vast civilization was destroyed by Indo-European Aryan invaders, but rather, it is now virtually certain that its demise came as a result of widespread climatic changes that occurred in 1,900 BC.

Recent studies by Louis Flam of H. H. Lehman College of the City University of New York have shown that the course of the Indus river changed dramatically around 1,900 BC, probably flooding many settlements along the river and disrupting the Indus valley civilisation. Jim Schaffer of Case Western University has found impressive evidence that settlers of the Indus valley migrated at this time east to the plains of the river Ganges.

Mortimer Wheeler, the anthropologists who excavated Mohenjo-Daro in the in the 1920s , one of the most well-preserved cities of the Indus Valley civilisation, brought to the project an “outside invasion theory.” He found unburied skeletons in the most recent layers of the city which led him to think that he had evidence that the civilisation was overrun by invaders from outside. More reliable recent evidence has shown that the people of the Indus valley were not victims of invasion and massacre, but that their civilisation withered as a result of various climactic changes, including prolonged droughts and extensive flooding, and possibly also earthquakes that changed the courseof the rivers.

It was not outside invaders of India who brought an end to the Indus-Saraswati civilisation, but a series of climactic changes and natural disasters. The biases of European scholarship caused them to see invaders where there were none. They existed only in the imagination of European scholars.

Historical Linguistics and Migrations of Early Civilisation

The other issue that needs to be considered is language origins. Historical linguistics appears to detect patterns of language change which some think may imply patterns of migration of early peoples, and which may therefore provide a clue to the origins of Vedic civilisation.

The original theory proposed by the early historical linguistics who considered these issues was that Vedic Sanskrit conserved the original sound system of the “proto-Indo-European” language most closely, and that Iranian and European languages underwent a systematic sound shift, creating break-away or daughter languages spoken by the people who populated India and Europe. According to this theory, Vedic Sanskrit was put at near the trunk of the proto-Indo-European language tree, if not the trunk itself.

This theory has been challenged and hotly debated in recent years, most especially by computer linguists. Since the 1990s, it is now common for computer linguists to hold that Sanskrit is not so near the root of the Indo-European language tree, but a subsequent branch. A currently dominant theory is that the original Indo-European language stemmed from an Indo-European proto-language that has since been lost.

The first languages to break off from the proto-Indo-European root, according to the dominant contemporary linguistic theories, was Anatolian (the language of what is now central Turkey), followed by Celtic (a language found in nearby Thrace in northeastern Greece, and also Ireland suggesting that there was a commerce or colonisation between Ireland and early Thrace), then Greek, and then Armenian. According to these theories, the Indian and Iranian language groups are still later branches off the proto-Indo-European “root.”

The linguistic evidence appears to imply migrations of people from the Black Sea area into India, and yet there is no anthropological evidence to support either a migration into northern India, or an invasion. Evidence from skeletal remains, as we saw, as well as pottery and other artifacts, show no cultural replacement at any time in north Indian history. This makes it difficult to conclude that a people speaking a proto-Indo-European root language migrated to India from outside, resulting in a language shift to the daughter language of Sanskrit. The hard anthropological evidence just does not support such a view. How else, then, can we account for the apparently late evolution of Sanskrit from the proto-Indo-European root language ?

* * * Dr. Don Ringe and Dr. Ann Taylor, two linguists at the University of Pennsylvania, with the help of computer scientist Dr. Tandy Warnow, developed a computer algorithm to sift through the Indo-European languages and look for grammatical and phonetic similarities between them. Their work, published in 1996, has thrown up four possible family trees. “We have come up with a favorite,” says Dr. Warnow. The tree shows that the first breakaway language was Anatolian, an ancient group of languages once spoken in Turkey. Celtic was quick to follow, spawning Irish, Gaelic, Welsh and Breton. Armenian and Greek then developed from proto-Into-European. Strangely enough, one of the later branches to emerge, according to the runs of the computer programs, was Sanskrit.

It is interesting that the Celts settled in Thrace in northern Greece, just a short distance from Anatolia. Thrace was the birthplace of the Orphic mysteries which swept into Greece in the sixth century BC. Celtic is one of the earliest languages, along with Anatolian and Greek, to break off from the Indo European proto-language. The technique for self-knowledge described by Socrates were said to have come from Thrace. The Anatolians of central Turkey occupied the area near where the pre-Socratic tradition sprang up in the sixth century BC. This suggests that a technique was passed from India into the Celtic language.

Eminent computer linguists caution against drawing conclusions from computer-simulated language programs—which may reflect the assumptions of the programmers more than the branches of the linguistic tree. They caution that computer linguists tend to program in assumptions that reflect their own biases and expectations, and therefore the outcomes cannot be any more accurate than the assumptions. Computer linguistics does not necessarily mean unbiased, objective linguistics, but may, on the contrary, program in distinct biases of the linguists. If linguists start with a theory of an outside invasion, they will naturally bring those biases into their work, and it is not unthinkable that such biases have colored computer and historical linguistic theories.

It also needs to be pointed out that if a false assumption is programmed in, then anything at all can come out. Anything at all can be derived from a false assumption. If the assumption that Sanskrit is not the proto-Indo-European language root be false, then anything follows.

More on the Indo-European Proto-Language

* * * In 1990, Thomas V. Gamkrelidze and V. V. Ivanov, authors of the two volume The Indo-European Language and the Indo-Europeans, published an article in Scientific American, in which they state, “The landscape described by the reconstructed Indo-European proto-language is mountainous—as evidenced by the many words for high mountains, mountain lakes and rapid rivers flowing from mountain sources.” They note also that, “the [proto-Indo-European language] has words for animals that are alien to Europe, such as “leopard,” “snow leopard,” “lion,” “monkey” and “elephant.”” The authors suggest, on the basis of this and other linguistic evidence, that the homeland of the proto-Indo-Europeans was somewhere in the Caucasian mountains of western Asia near the Black Sea in around 4000 BC.

These same words could be used to make the case that the mountainous terrain, and more especially the elephant, monkey, and snow leopard are more commonly found in the region of northern India and the Himalayas. If the words for elephant, monkey, snow leopard, and mountains are in fact more abundant in the Indo-European proto language, this would most likely put the proto-Indo-European home somewhere in the Himalayan region of northern India, rather than in the Mountains to the east of the Black Sea. This would tend to support the hypothesis that the Indo-European proto language originated in the region of the Himalayas of northern India and Tibet, rather than in the area of central Turkey, where there are few monkeys and elephants.

At present, there is simply not enough evidence to discern the early patterns of migration and language shift that brought about the different language groups. We can say with relative certainty, however, that the Vedic people did not migrate into India from outside, so it is relatively unlikely that the Vedic language came from outside India. Thus the origins of Vedic Sanskrit remain obscure.

Many linguists stress that our “linguistic heritage, while it may tend to correspond with cultural continuity, does not imply genetic or biological descent. There is no more reason to suppose that we, as speakers of an Indo-European language, are descended biologically from the speakers of proto-Indo-European, than that the English speaking population of Nigeria is Anglo-Saxon.”17 It is necessary to be very careful in drawing conclusions about migration patterns and racial origins from linguistic evidence.

Rules of Language Transformation

A main tool of historical linguistics is the set of rules of sound and grammatical transformation governing the language change. One language evolves into another due to cultural or geographic separations of peoples due to migrations or other cultural displacements, such as conquest. Using the rules of historical linguistics, it appears to be possible to discern patterns of change and to determine which language has shifted into the other.

* * * Thomas V. Gamkrelidze and V. V. Ivanov, “Family Tree of the Indo-European Languages,” Scientific American, March, 1990, argue that more “recent evidence now places the probable origin of the Indo-European language in western Asia.” They hypothesize that the proto-Indo-Europeans originated sometime around 4,000 BC in the region around the Black Sea.

* * * Radio-carbon dating of skeletal remains of the “Kennikut man” found in the late 1990s in the Columbia river gorge on the west coast of north America shows that caucasoidal men inhabited Oregon more than ten thousand years ago. Some words of the Klamath Indians of that region of Oregon are also of apparent Indo-European origin. The Klamath word which means “to blow” is “pniw” and may be linked to the Greek “pneu” which means breath or to blow, and ultimately to the Sanskrit “prana” which means breath. Linguists assume this was mere accident before the discovery of Caucasoid remains in the area. This would suggest that a migration into the Americas took place 10,000 years ago or more—and the immigrants brought with them an Indo-European language, putting the dates of the proto-European root at before 10,000 BC. The Rig Veda civilisation, like the American Indians, had a bow and arrow technology. Rig Vedic civilisation can be placed in time as more advanced than the Indian culture of 10,000 years ago.

One of the rules of historical linguistics is the softening of consonants over time. Thus, for example, the “v” in the Sanskrit “Veda,” meaning knowledge, is transformed into the softer English “w” in “wit,” “witten,” “wisdom” and the German “wissen,” which also means knowledge, and derives from the more ancient Sanskrit root. The Sanskrit “deva” is transformed into the softer Latin “deus,” Greek “theos,” Lithuanian “dewas,” Irish “dia,” and Old Prussian “diews.”

Using such transformation rules, linguists attempt to reconstruct which languages are earlier and which broke off later in the transmutation of language. Historical linguists assume that these rules are constant over time and that they apply to early transformations as well as later ones.

If we assume that the basic rules of language transformations are constant and do not mutate over time, then these conclusions follow. But could there have been sound shifts in the opposite direction at much earlier times in history ? Perhaps different laws applied at the time when Vedic Sanskrit changed from and to other languages.

Consider that there are also changes in the reverse direction. For example, the “g” in the Sanskrit “go,” (meaning cow) is transformed into the harder consonant “k,” to make the German word “kuh” for cow. The English word “cow,” pronounced with a hard “k,” is a harder, guttural form than the “g” in the Sanskrit “go.”

Also, in the case of the Vedic tradition, we have a people who were highly conscious of language and sound and the rules of sound transformation, even from the early Vedanga period. The Vedangas give elaborate theories of sound and its relation to meaning. Ancient Sanskrit grammar has its own rules for the transformation of consonants, internal rules for change, codified in ancient texts on phonology and grammar (Nirukta and Vakaran), both of which express elaborate theories of sound. Such self-reflective theories at an early date may have influenced the direction of language shift and may be anomalous to the rules applied in later linguistic theory.

Other hypotheses may explain why Vedic Sanskrit appears to not be the proto-Indo-European root language. One might propose, for example, that an early form of Sanskrit arose in northern India, and that some north Indian peoples migrated west to the Black Sea area, where their language mutated into Anatolian, Armenian, Celtic, and Greek. Then language change within Vedic Sanskrit, due to self-reflective grammatical theories, have mutated this earlier form of Sanskrit in a direction contrary to the typical rules of linguistic transformation.

Computer simulated models of language change may be simply wrong or misleading. In other words, the transformation “rules” of historical linguistics may not apply to changes as early as Vedic Sanskrit. Or they may reflect more the racial and cultural biases of the programmers. Rather than assume a migration from the Black Sea area into India, which is not supported by anthropological evidence, we must simply acknowledge that we do not have enough knowledge to discern the early patterns of migration of the people who wrote the Vedic literature.

The simplest hypothesis to account for the data may be that Vedic Sanskrit is itself is the mother tongue of the proto-Indo-European peoples.

The next in series….  


Story Of Vedic Civilisation

How Ancient Is The Vedic Tradition

Dr Kenneth Chandler

Origins Of Vedic Civilisation

To many European scholars of the nineteenth century (characterised more by their Euro-centrism than by scientific attitudes towards peoples of other cultures), the idea that the family of European languages family could have originated in India was unthinkable. It was just not culturally acceptable to think that the roots of European language and culture could be traced to darker-skinned peoples indigenous to India. So European thinkers began to speculate about a pre-historic “proto-Indo-European” race who had migrated from somewhere in Western Asia, perhaps around the Black Sea, Eastern Europe, or Russia, to settle in India and in Europe. This, as we will see, was a purely racial and cultural bias, with no basis in archeological fact.

Many European scholars immediately bought in to the “Indo-European hypothesis,” which was the stimulus to develop the discipline of historical linguistics. European scholars like Max Muller, Thomas Young, Joseph de Goubinau, Dwight Witney, Sir Mortimer Wheeler, A.L. Basham, George Cox, and John Fiske all adopted the theory of Indo-European origins. They commonly proposed that a people speaking “proto-Indo-European” came from somewhere in central or Western Asia or southeastern Europe, invaded India from the northwest, overran the local culture, and settled in the north of India.

These Indo-Europeans were said to be “Aryans” in race and language, which meant primarily fair-haired and light-skinned people. By the twentieth century they were conceived, mainly by German scholars, as a blue-eyed, blond race that was the stock of the Germanic people—all nicely fitting the cultural-political-racial agendas of Western Europe—and Nazi Germany in particular.

In spite of the large number of scholars of the late nineteenth and early twentieth century who believed the invasion theory, it turns out, as we see below, that there is almost no shred of evidence to support it. It is one of the great myths formed by European scholars to support their bias that outside invaders created early Indian civilisation. Anthropologist today find all evidence points to an origin of the Vedic tradition that is indigenous to northern India.

Scientific Archeology : The End of the Invasion Theory

In the 1990s, a new wave of scientific evidence, coming partly from satellite photos, geological study, archeological digs, and other anthropological finds began to seriously discredit the old myth. Once the rubble of false assumptions was cleared away, a far more simple scientific picture of the origins of ancient north Indian civilization began to emerge.

* * * Professor Colin Renfrew, professor of archeology at Cambridge University, in his Archeology and Language: The Puzzle of Indo-European Origins, (1988) gives evidence for Indo-Europeans in India as early as 6,000 BC. He comments : As far as I can see there is nothing in the Hymns of the Rigveda which demonstrates that the Vedic-speaking population were intrusive to the area : this comes rather from a historical assumption about the ‘coming’ of the Indo-Europeans.

* * * Professor Schaffer at Case Western University writes in “Migration, Philology and South Asian Archaeology” that there was an indigenous development of civilization in India going back to at least 6000 BC. He proposes that the Harappan or Indus Valley urban culture (2600-1900 BC) centered around the Saraswati river described in the Rig Veda and states that the Indus Valley culture came to an end, not because of outside invaders, but due to environmental changes, most important of which was the drying up of the Saraswati river.

Schaffer holds that the movement of populations away from the Saraswati to the Ganges after the Saraswati dried up in about 1900 BC, is reflected in the change from the Saraswati-based literature of the Rig Veda to the Ganges-based literature of the Itihasa and Puranic texts. He also states that the Aryan invasion theory reflects a colonial and Euro-centric perspective that is quite out of date. He concludes : We reject most strongly the simplistic historical interpretations… that continue to be imposed on south Asian culture history…Surely, as south Asian studies approach the twenty-first century, it is time to describe emerging data objectively rather than perpetuate interpretations without regard to the data archaeologists have worked so hard to reveal.

Anthropologist Brian Hemphill of Vanderbilt University has been studying the human remains of the northern Indian subcontinent for years. He states categorically that his analysis shows no indication of population replacement or large-scale migration.

Archaeologist Mark Kenoyer, associate professor of anthropology at the University of Wisconsin at Madison, and co-director of the Harappa Archeological Research project, holds that the invasion theory is completely unsupported by archeological, linguistic, or literary evidence. He writes in an article on the Indus valley civilisation : Colin Renfrew, Professor of Archeology at Cambridge University, in his famous work, Archeology and Language : The Puzzle of Indo-European Origins, (Cambridge: Cambridge Univ. Press, 1988) Renfrew also sees evidence that the Indo-Europeans were in Greece as early as 6,000 BC. If previous scholars were wrong about the origin of the Indus people, they also missed the boat when it came to explaining their downfall, which they attributed to an invasion by Indo-Aryan speaking Vedic tribes from the northwest. Archeological evidence simply does not support the thesis of an outside invasion.

Kenoyer argues, “it’s likely that the rivers dried up and shifted their courses, altering trade routes and undermining the economy.” Kenoyer holds that the Indus valley script can be traced to at least 3,300 BC—making it as old or older than the oldest Sumerian written records.

Archaeologist Kenneth Kennedy writes that no Aryan skeletons have been found in the Indus valley that differ from the skeletons of indigenous ethnic groups. All prehistoric human remains recovered from the Indian subcontinent are phenotypically identifiable as south Asians. Furthermore their biological continuity with living peoples of India, Pakistan, Sri Lanka and the border regions is well established across time and space.

Scientific archeology, it is now safe to say, no longer gives the invasion theory a grain of credibility. It has lost its supporters among serious scientists. Also, as professor Renfrew argues, there is no internal evidence from the ancient Vedic literature that Vedic civilisation originated outside India. The verses of the Rig Veda, the most ancient songs of Vedic tradition, detail many aspects of daily life of the people. There is no hint in this vast literature of a migration or of a history that lies in a homeland beyond the mountains of northern India. All evidence from archeology, anthropology, and Vedic literature indicate that Vedic civilisation was indigenous to northern India. Geological data now explains the demise of the Indus and Saraswati valley civilisations in terms of climactic change, bringing an end to the outside invasion theory.

The next in series….  

Story Of Vedic Civilisation

How Ancient Is The Vedic Tradition

Dr Kenneth Chandler

Origins Of Vedic Civilisation

How did it begin ? Was it the creation of a people who invaded India from outside, as many European scholars believed for centuries ? Or did it arise among an indigenous people of northern India ?

According to the Vedic tradition, the Veda is eternal. It exists within the eternal fabric of consciousness itself. As such it is uncreated. But even so, we can ask, when was the Veda first cognised ? And when did the tradition of reciting the Veda begin ? Many myths about the Veda and Vedic tradition have formed that must be dispelled before we can get an accurate picture of its origins.

One myth is that a race of light-skinned Aryan peoples invaded India from outside, pushing the dark-skinned natives, called Dravidians, into the south. According to this theory, the lighter-skinned race invaded India in an incursion that took place, some scholars project, around 1,500 BC. This myth persisted long after an overwhelming body of scientific evidence, and a consensus of archeologists, showed that it is completely untenable. It must be discredited before we can get an accurate picture of the character of Vedic Civilisation.

As we will see, the Veda was first “cognized,” not by invading races from outside India, but by a people who had lived continuously in India for thousands of years. Also, the dates commonly ascribed to the origin of the Vedic tradition are probably off by many thousands of years. Archeologists at Harvard, Oxford, and other top universities in the US and Europe are now widely agreed that there was no invasion of India from outside that displaced the peoples of the Saraswati and Indus river valleys. This civilisation arose within northern India and there is evidence that Vedic civilization was either a precursor to the Indus-Saraswati civilisation or an early contributor to its cultural and spiritual heritage. Vedic civilisation arose in India many millennia before the speculative mythologies of the past suggest.

Origins of the Indo-European Hypothesis

Linguistic similarities between Indian and European languages were recognised by the earliest European scholars. In the late eighteenth century, it was observed that Sanskrit, Iranian, and most European languages share many common words and grammatical structures. Early linguists classified Vedic Sanskrit and the majority of European tongues in the same “family of Indo-European languages.”

Sir William Jones was the first to show that there are many common cognate words shared by Sanskrit and European languages. Speaking to the Asiatic Society in Calcutta on February 2, 1786, Jones made a statement which was soon to become quite famous :

the Sanskrit language, whatever be its antiquity, is of a wonderful structure; more perfect than the Greek, more copious than the Latin, and more exquisitely refined than either, yet bearing to both of them a stronger affinity, both in the roots of verbs and in the forms of grammar, than could possibly have been produced by accident; so strong, indeed, that no philosopher could examine them all three, without believing them to have sprung from some common source, which, perhaps, no longer exists.

A quick glance at some of the common cognate words of English and Sanskrit shows definite family resemblances that Jones spoke about :

Common Cognate Words             English          and          Sanskrit

                                                     advocate,                             adhivaktr

                                                         agri,                                    ajira

                                                         bind,                                  bandhi

                                                        bright,                                bharajat

                                                        brother,                                bhatr

                                                        candle,                               chandra

                                                        cardio,                                   hrd

                                                         come,                                  gam

                                                         deity,                                  devata

                                                         eight,                                   ashta

                                                         end,                                     anta

                                                         genus,                                  janus

                                                         gnosis,                                 gnana

                                                          idea,                                    vidya

                                                         identity,                                idamta

                                                         immortal,                               amrta

                                                         kalon,                                  kalyana

                                                         mega,                                   maha

                                                          man,                                    manu

                                                          mind,                                   manas

                                                         mortal,                                   mrta

                                                         mother,                                  matr

                                                         same,                                    sama

                                                         three,                                      tri

                                                          vivi,                                        jiva

                                                         voice,                                     vaca

                                                         wind,                                      vata

                                                         wit video,                                 vid

                                                          yoke,                                     yoga

                                                          young,                                   yuvan

In nineteenth century, the German linguist Friedrich Schlegel suggested that the main body of European languages were derived from Sanskrit. Schlegel’s suggestion was widely rejected, mainly because European scholars did not like to think that their language and culture derived from India. But the early nineteenth century it was widely recognized that all European languages and the Indic languages belonged to a common “family,” distinct, for example, from Chinese, African, and American Indian language families and groups. All but a few of the European languages, such as Basque for example, belong to this distinct family of Indo-European languages. Thus, the idea that an Indo-European language was at the root of the family of the main body of European languages came into prominence.

The next in series…. 

Story Of Vedic Civilisation

English: Replica of 'Dancing Girl' of Mohenjo-...

Replica of ‘Dancing Girl’ of Mohenjo-daro

To capture the story of any civilisation is easy but only in parts.

The whole narrative, especially its beginning, is impossible. 

Material in this series of essays has been sourced from diverse websites.

I include them here because I believe our present truth derives from its civilisation origins, even as we hurtle towards catastrophes caused by degenerate values, inferior belief systems, ever so subtle but globally entrenched feudalism in governments, democratic or not, in manipulated power heirarchies of regressive and aggressive societies, and in the pyramidal finance structure managed transnationally to collect and pull, direct and push massive finance flows … 

Are we still in the same line of human civilisational aspiration and enterprise, best evident at its source ?

Or is it long since hijacked by some neo-feudals and subverted by swarm of power brokers ? 

Let’s revert to some glimpses of our civilisational facts and inscrutable truths.

*  *  * 

The first three chapters of Kenneth Chandler’s Origins Of Vedic Civilisation makes for a good start. It is a scholarly work in progress. 

Few Images. Some Facts.

A picture of a king seated in yoga ‘Padmasan‘ posture, with Pipili Leaf adorning his head, was found in the ancient city of Mohenjo-daro in the Indus valley. Mark Kenoyer, the University of Wisconsin anthropologist, describes this figure as “seated in a yogic posture.” He characterises it as a deity with three faces, feet in a yogic posture extending beyond the throne, with seven bangles on each arm, and a pipili plant showing over his head. 

The Katha Upanishad of the Vedic tradition relates a metaphor in which the individual self is the lord of the mind-body chariot, intellect the charioteer, and the senses are the horses. “He who has no understanding…” the Upanishad say, “his senses are out of control, as wicked horses are for a charioteer.” Exactly the same metaphor is found in Plato’s Phaedrus, which uses the image of a chariot moving through heaven and falling to earth when the self, the charioteer, allows the horses, representing sense and appetite, to get out of control. 

The Vedic practice of performing sacrificial rites also has echoes in the religious practices of Greece and Israel. In the Odyssey, Odysseus makes sacrificial offerings of a bull to the gods, and in Israel, in the Old Testament, there are many descriptions of burnt offerings of animals to the gods. These practices have their roots in more ancient Vedic rites. 

Fragments from Empedocles’ book on Purification give the same definition of ” health ” that the Charaka Samhita of the Vedic tradition did more than two thousand years earlier. Heraclitus defines “health” as a balance of the fundamental elements (earth, air, fire and water) in all parts of the body, each part ideally having the proportion proper to it. Plato’s Timaeus defines health in the same way. 

Ancient legends in Greece speak of the early Pre-Socratics as traveling to India. Thales, Pythagoras, Empedocles, Democritus, and Plato were all fabled to have made the journey. These deserve a skeptical respect as sources of credible possibilities. Commentators on the early Greeks from around the first and second century BC have written on these legends. While these journeys may or may not have taken place, it is not unthinkable, for there were well established commercial routes between India and Greece along the Silk Road, protected by Persian king, as well as between ports on the Red Sea that linked Greece with India in a thriving spice trade. 

Plotinus in the third century AD set out from Alexandria (a city famed for its esoteric knowledge) on an expedition to India to gain more experiential knowledge of the transcendent. The expedition never completed the journey, so that Plotinus never arrived in India, but Plotinus believed that it was the place to learn about the transcendental unity of Being. If anything specifically Vedic brought about the Greek awakening that occurred in the early sixth century BC, it was not ideas or concepts from India, but the introduction of a technique of transcending to experience pure consciousness. Plato writes about a “fair word” that a physician of Thrace gave to Socrates to enable him to become immortal and gain self-knowledge.

The next in series….

Children's toy from Mohenjo-daro. Located in t...

Children’s toy from Mohenjo-daro.

Journal : The River Sarawati And Its People

Part III : Of The Non – Resident Indian, 5000 Years Ago

“Based on cuneiform documents from Mesopotamia we know that there was at least one Meluhhan village in Akkad at that time, with people called ‘Son of Meluhha‘ living there. The cuneiform inscription (ca. 2020 BCE) says that the cylinder seal belonged to Shu-ilishu, who was a translator of the Meluhhan language. “The presence in Akkad of a translator of the Meluhhan language suggests that he may have been literate and could read the undeciphered Indus script. This in turn suggests that there may be bilingual Akkadian/Meluhhan tablets somewhere in Mesopotamia. Although such documents may not exist, Shu-ilishu’s cylinder seal offers a glimmer of hope for the future in unraveling the mystery of the Indus script.”

(Gregory L. Possehl,Shu-ilishu’s cylinder seal, Expedition, Vol. 48, Number 1, pp. 42-43).

Meluhhan Cylindrical Seal

SilverelamiteAn Elamite statuette showed a person (king?) carrying an antelope on his hands, the same way a Meluhhan carried an antelope on his hands (as shown on a cylinder seal). Antelope carried by the Meluhhan is a hieroglyph: mlekh ‘goat’ (Br.); mr̤eka (Te.); mēṭam (Ta.); meṣam (Skt.) Thus, the goat conveys the message that the carrier is a Meluhha speaker.


Meluhha lay to the east of Magan and was linked with carnelian and ivory. Gujarat was a carnelian source in the ancient world. Possehl locates Meluhha in the mountains of Baluchistan and speaks of meluhhans use of magilum-boat (Possehl, Gregory. : J. Reade (ed.)

The Indian Ocean in Antiquity

Many scholars have noted the contacts between the Mesopotamian and Sarasvati – Sindhu (Indus) Civilizations in terms of cultural history, chronology, artefacts (beads, jewellery), pottery and seals found from archaeological sites in the two areas.

“…the four examples of round seals found in Mohenjodaro show well-supported sequences, whereas the three from Mesopotamia show sequences of signs not paralleled elsewhere in the Indus Script. But the ordinary square seals found in Mesopotamia show the normal Mohenjodaro sequences. In other words, the square seals are in the Indian language, and were probably imported in the course of trade; while the circular seals, although in the Indus script, are in a different language, and were probably manufactured in Mesopotamia for a Sumerian – or Semitic – speaking person of Indian descent…”

[G.R. Hunter,1932. Mohenjodaro–Indus Epigraphy, JRAS:466-503]

The acculturation of Meluhhans residing in Mesopotamia in the late third and early second millennium BC is noted by their adoption of Sumerian names (Parpola, S., Parpola, A., and Brunswig, R.H. Jr. 1977.

“The adaptation of Harappan motifs and script to the Dilmun seal form may be a further indication of the acculturative phenomenon, one indicated in Mesopotamia by the adaptation of Harappan traits to the cylinder seal.” (Brunswig et al,1983, p. 110).

“Indian-style” seals have been found in Sumeria. In 1932, CJ Gadd published such seals from Mesopotamia (some of these are identified as Dilmun seals coming from Failaka and Bahrein Gulf islands).

Massimo Vidale notes : As the identification of the land of Meluhha with the coastal areas controlled by the Indus Civilization is almost universally accepted, the textual evidence dealing with individuals qualified as “men” or “sons” of Meluhha or called with the ethnonym Meluhha, living in Mesopotamia and of a “Meluhha village” established at Lagash (and presumably at other major cities as well) unescapably points to the existence of enclaves settled by Indian mmigrants…

Meluhhan ships exported to Mesopotamia precious goods among which exotic animals, such as dogs, perhaps peacocks, cocks, bovids, elephants, precious woods and royal furniture, precious stones such as carnelian, agate and lapis lazuli, and metals like gold, silver and tin…

Akkadian text records that Lu-sunzida ‘a man of Meluhha’ paid to the servant Urur, son of Amar-lu-KU 10 shekels of silver as payment for a tooth broken in a clash. The name Lu-sunzida literally means ‘Man of the just buffalo cow’ … a name, although rendered in Sumerian, according to the authors, “does not make sense in the Mesopotamian cultural sphere, and must be a translation of an Indian name…” (Massimo Vidale, 2004)

Though cylinder seals are normally associated with Metopotamian civilization, Sibri and Kalibangan have yielded cylinder seals, but with unique glyphs of the script. SR Rao found a Gulf seal at Lothal.

In Sargon I’s reign (ca. 2370 BCE), a reference is made to ‘holder of a Meluhha ship’. A seal in British Museum (ca. 2250 BCE) lists enemies of King Naram-Sin, among them is a ‘man of Meluhha’ by the name of _ibra. “Meluhha was used as a personal name for some people. Urkal, Ur-dlam were called the ‘son of meluhha’. A person called Nin-ana is identified with the village of Meluhha. Meluhha was also identified with specific products : giS-ab-ba-me-lu-hha (abba wood); giS-ha-lu-ub (Haluppu wood).


Numerous Mesopotamian documents, spanning several centuries, refer to the lands of Meluhha, Makkan, and Dilmun. Modern scholars identify Meluhha with Indus – Sarasvati Valley, Makkan with Makran and Omani coasts, and Dilmun with Bahrain, Failaka and the adjacent Arabian coastline. These three far-flung lands were important partners in the trade network Mesopotamians had.

A brief overview of the major literary references includes :

 Sargon’s inscription referring to Meluhhan ships docked at Akkad.

 References to a Meluhhan ship-holder and a Meluhhan interpreter.

 Gudea of Lagash inscriptions (ca. 22nd cent. BCE) :

‘The Meluhhans came up (or down) from their country to supply wood and other raw materials for theconstruction of the main temple of Gudea’s capital.’

 References to luxury items being imported from Meluhha.

 References to a Meluhhan workers village.


[Chris JD Kostman, ‘The Indus Valley Civilization : in search of those elusive centers and peripheries’,

in : JAGNES, the Journal of the Association of Graduates in Near Eastern Studies.]

From linguistic evidence, sesame oil was probably imported from the Indus valley into Sumer : the Sumerian word for this oil is illu (Akkadian : ellu). In Dravidian languages of South India, el or ellu stands for sesame.

It is fascinating to note that by the Ur III Period, the Meluhhan (Harappan) workers residing in Sumeria had Sumerian names, leading Parpola, Parpola, and Brunswig to comment that ‘three hundred years after the earliest textually documented contact between Meluhha and Mesopotamia, the references to a distinctly foreign commercial people have been replaced by an ethnic component of Ur III society’ (Parpola et al.1977:152). Here we have an undeniable economic presence of Indus traders in Mesopotamia, maintaining their own distinct village in a distant peripheral location over a considerable span of time.

The Meluhhan Language

What was the language the sea-faring traders from Indian shores spoke ?

It was known as Mleccha or Meluhhan.

As place or region name, the word Meluhha meant “sailor country.”


“Baloch” is the corrupted form of Melukhkha, Meluccha or Mleccha, which was the designation of the modern eastern Makkoran during the third and the second millennia BC, according to the Mesopotamian texts. [J. Hansman, “A Periplus of Magan and Melukha”, in BSOAS. London, 1973, p. 555; H.W. Bailey, “Mleccha, Baloc,and Gadrosia”, in: BSOAS. No. 36, London, 1973, pp. 584-87.Also see, Cf. K. Kartrunen,India in Early Greek Literature. Studia Orientalia, no. 65, Helsinki: Finnish OrientalSociety, 1989, pp. 13-14.]


Source: Baluchistan nationalism : its origin and development –

Shu Ilishu’s personal cylinder seal showed him to be a translator of Meluhhan language. More, Indus Valley links unearthed in Qatar … Published : Wednesday, 26 March, 2008, 02:05AM Doha Time By K.T. Chacko : The brazen pot and the porcelain vase that contained the relic of a tooth found at a burial site at Al-Ruwaida, near Ruwais. A burial site of traders from the Indus Valley, estimated to be 5,000 years old, has been found on the north-west coast of Qatar, strengthening the theories of commercial exchange between the ancient people of Middle East and the Indian subcontinent, according to Qatari explorer and fossil collector, Mohamed Ali al-Sulaiti. Based on the materials found at a graveyard at Al-Ruwaida, a few kilometres to the west of Ruwais, al-Sulaiti said, “the colony belonged to people of the Indus Valley civilisation, which flourished around 3,000 BC. These people mostly traded in brass. They also brought in porcelain objects, probably procured from China (?), for selling in the Gulf countries including Qatar, Bahrain, Oman and Abu Dhabi.”

Al-Sulaiti, an engineering graduate from US and an amateur archaeologist, told Gulf Times in an exclusive interview, “They mined copper ore for making brass from the Buraimi mountains in Oman and probably smelted it in Qatar.” He has found at Al-Ruwaida many fragments of brass, an alloy of copper and zinc, and says, “Though the graveyard at Al-Ruwaida gets submerged during high tides and thus much of the remains could have been washed away, we can still piece together some aspects of their life and culture.” One of the startling discoveries at the site was a small brazen pot with a smaller porcelain vase inside containing a molar.“The tooth could have belonged to a chieftain or a high priest,” al-Sulaiti reasoned. “It is known that the people of that period saved such relics of important people like kings and religious leaders. ”Also found at the burial site was rice, which has been carbonised with the passing of time. People used to bury food items along with the bodies of their dear ones during that period.”

According to al-Sulaiti, the Gulf region is dotted with remnains of settlements of people from Indus Sarasvati civilisation period. He particularly mentioned findings in Mannar in Abu Dhabi and some places in Kuwait. Another important find at Al-Ruwaida was glass bangles, inlaid with lacquer paintings and parts of necklaces and shells used as ornaments by the ancient visitors. These decorative items were similar in style and were made of materials used by inhabitants of Indus-Sarasvati cities during their heydays. Talking about the Indus Valley connection, al-Sulaiti said the “ox” figured prominently on the shards of pottery and on coins recovered from the Qatari site. “We also found needles made of brass in one of the graves.

”The Indus Valley civilisation was based at Mohenjodaro in Sindh and Harappa in Punjab in Pakistan. (We now know that settlements in Indus valley constituted around 20 % of the total; the rest were located along the Saravati.) For the Indus Valley people, the Arabian Sea opened the doors for journey beyond the Arab world, through the Arabian Gulf and the Red Sea, right into the ancient civilisations of Mesopotamia and Egypt. It is these voyages that gave to the Indus land its earliest name of Meluhha (sailor country) in the Babylonian records.

“According to historians, the Indus Valley civilisation had close bonds of culture and trade with the Gulf countries. Archaeologists have found the remnants of a “Meluhhan” village in ancient Mesopotamia (present-day Iraq). The Indus Valley people traded seals, painted pottery, and lapis lazuli, in exchange for copper and tin and several other items from Oman and the Gulf states. The Baloch and Sindh ports ( and Lothal, in Gujarat ) also saw extensive trade with African ports in Ethiopia, Somalia, Zanzibar, Kenya and Tanzania.”

Al-Sulaiti believes that extensive excavations and research would lead to more definite information on these traders, who established temporary settlements as encampments at certain points on their regular routes.

 * * *

Separating facts from conjectures …

The presence of individuals or groups of immigrants from Indian Subcontinent in Mesopotamia in the 3rd millennium BC was recognized since the discovery of Indus Civilization at Harappa and Mohenjo-Daro in early 1920s, because Indus-like seals were found in stratified contexts in some of the most important Sumerian cities. In 1932, C.J. Gadd opened a new line of archaeological research, collecting and publishing in a fortunate paper a series of seals from Mesopotamia (found
during digs or acquired on the antiquarian market) sharing what he regarded as an Indian style. Gadd’s interpretation was fundamentally correct, although the series of seals he published also included specimens of what we presently identify as Dilmunite seals, coming from the Gulf islands of Faylaka and Bahrein.

The great seasons of extensive excavations at Mohenjo Daro (Sindh, presently in Pakistan) were over, and the final report by J. Marshall (1931) had been published. Both the inscriptions and the animal icons on the major group of western seals had obvious similarities with the steatite seals unearthed by thousands in major cities of the Indus civilization. It was on the basis of these finds, at least in a first stage, that the Indus valley civilization was dated to the middle Bronze age.

Since then, two generations of archaeologists and philologists have attempted to investigate the problem of Indian communities that had settled in Mesopotamia in the second half of 3rd millennium BC. As identification of Meluhha with coastal areas controlled by Indus-Sarasvati people is almost universally accepted, the textual evidence dealing with individuals qualified as men or sons of Meluhha, or called with the ethnonym Meluhha, living in Mesopotamia in a Meluhha village established at Lagash (and presumably at other major cities as well), clearly points to the existence of enclaves settled by Indian immigrants.

Conclusion …

As remarked by M. Tosi … the lack of Mesopotamian imports into the Indus Valley reveals the lesser significance of these connections for the eastern pole. Very much like the Roman trade with India and Arabia, as described in the Periplus of the Erythrean Sea in the 1st century AD, the
flow of goods towards the head of the Gulf in the later 3rd millennium BC was determined more by the Mesopotamian demand than by economic integration with the distant lands that supplied these goods from the shores of the Indian Ocean.

The Sumerians and Akkadians interacted more with Dilmun sailors and traders, Indian immigrants and largely acculturated social groups than with the remote “Black Country” of Meluhha. In Mesopotamia and in the Gulf, the immigrant Indus families maintained and trasmitted their language, their writing system, weights and measures (known in Mesopotamia as the Dilmunite standard) … as strategic tools of trade. Their official symbol of “gaur” might have stressed, in a foreign land, their connection with their motherland in Indus-Sarasvati valleys. Nonetheless, they gradually adopted the use of foreign languages and introduced minor changes in their writing system for dealing with new, rapidy evolving linguistic needs.

The Indus communities in Mesopotamia developed, thanks to an intimate understanding of Mesopotamian culture and markets, and opportunisties for profitable trade. They promptly

adapted their products and merchandise, pricing and availability, to fast-changing local – political, social, cultural and ideological – environment of markets abroad. Their success in Mesopotamia is easily measured by their efficient adaptation to prevailing order in different lands : politics, wars and change of regimes among city-states; presumably centralized Akkadian bureaucracy; and, even more centralized empire established by Ur-nammu.

By 2000 BC, their integration with Mesopotamian social and economic reality seems to be total. The acculturation process involved collaboration with local religious institutions, worship of foreign divinities, production of ornaments with foreign religious symbols, adoption of impure foreign rituals in life and death and, it may be easily imagined, suffering possible discrimination by their compatriots at home for having eaten impure food. The price of their success might have been their apparent contamination with Mesopotamian habits, creeds and ritual practices : a circumstance that may assuredly have not escaped the attention of the conservative and tradition-minded leadership in their home-cities in Indus-Sarasvati valley.

If, as Parpola duo suggest, Meluhha is the origin of “Mleccha”, it would have been especially galling to be addressed as “barbarian or foriegner,” which is what the word means in Sanskrit !

* * *

There is extensive presence of Harappan seals and cubical weight measures in Mesopotamian urban sites. Specific items of high volume trade are timber and specialty wood such as ebony, for which large ships were used. Luxury items also appear, such as lapis lazuli mined at a Harappan colony at Shortugai (Badakshan in northern Afghanistan), which was transported to Lothal, a port city in Gujarat, and shipped from there to Oman, Bahrain, and Sumer.

Indus Valley versus Africa

A number of scholars suggest that Meluhha was the Sumerian name for Indus-Sarasvati Valley Civilization. Asko and Simo Parpola, both Finnish scholars, identify Meluhha (earlier variant Me-lah-ha) from Sumerian documents with Dravidian mel akam “high abode” or “high country”. Many items of trade such as wood, minerals, and gemstones were indeed extracted from the hilly regions near the Indus settlements.

Earlier texts (c. 2200 BC) seem to indicate that Meluhha is to the east, suggesting its location in the Indus-Sarasvati region. Sargon of Akkad is said to have “dismantled the cities, as far as the shore of the sea. At the wharf of Agade, he docked ships from Meluhha, ships from Magan.”

However, much later texts documenting the exploits of King Assur Banipal of Assyria (668–627 BC), long after the Indus Valley civilization had ceased to exist, seem to imply that Meluhha is to be found somewhere near Egypt, in Africa.

There is sufficient archaeological evidence for trade between Mesopotamia and the Indus Valley. Impressions of clay seals from the Indus Valley city of Harappa were evidently used to seal bundles of merchandise, as clay seal impressions with cord or sack marks on the reverse side testify. A number of these Indus Valley seals have been found at Ur and other Mesopotamian sites. The Persian-Gulf style of circular stamped seals, rather than rolled seals, are identified with Dilmun; they have been found at Lothal in Gujarat, India, as well as at Failaka Island (Kuwait), and in Mesopotamia. These widely dispersed finds are convincing evidence corroborating long-distance sea trade among these regions.

We are less sure of what the commerce consisted of : timber and precious woods, ivory, lapis lazuli, gold and luxury goods such as carnelian and glazed stone beads, pearls from Persian Gulf, shell and bone inlays were among the goods sent to Mesopotamia in exchange for silver, tin, woolen textiles, perhaps oil and grains and other foods. Copper ingots, certainly, bitumen, which occurred naturally in Mesopotamia, may have been exchanged for cotton textiles and chickens, major products of the Indus region that are not native to Mesopotamia—all these have been instanced.

African hypothesis :

Later texts from the 1st millennium BC suggest that “Meluhha” and “Magan” were kingdoms adjacent to Egypt. Assur Banipal writes about his first march against Egypt, “In my first campaign I marched against Magan, Meluhha, Tarka, king of Egypt and Ethiopia, whom Esarhaddon, king of Assyria, the father who begot me, had defeated, and whose land he brought under his sway.”

Apart from Assur Banipal’s reference, there is no mention of Meluhha in any Mesopotamian text after about 1700 BC, which corresponds to the time of decline of the Indus-Sarasvati Valley civilisation. This is a single instance reference to Meluhha nearly 1500 years after the ‘high tide’ of contact between the Indus Valley and Sumeria in 2000 BCE. Direct contacts ceased even during Mature Harappan phase between these two centers. Oman and Bahrain, Magan and Dilmun had become intermediaries. Sumeria had ‘forgotten’ the Indus Valley after the sack of Ur by the Elamites and subsequent invasions in Sumeria. Its trade and contacts shifted west and Meluhha passed into mythological memory. The resurfacing of the name probably relates to cultural memory of similarity of items of trade.

* * *

Shu-ilishu’s Cylinder Seal


“Some years ago, while perusing the great Assyriologist A. Leo Oppenheim’s Ancient Mesopotamia : Portrait of a Dead Civilization, I found a reference to the personal cylinder seal of a translator of the Meluhhan language. His name was Shu-ilishu and he lived in Mesopotamia during the Late Akkadian period (ca. 2020 BC, according to the new, low chronology).

“I was interested in this man because Meluhha is widely believed to have been the Indus Civilization of the Greater Indus Valley in India and Pakistan (ca. 2500–1900 BC)—the focus of my own research. Based on cuneiform documents from Mesopotamia we know that there was at least one Meluhhan village in Akkad at that time, with people called “Son of Meluhha” living there. Therefore, to find evidence of an official translator was no surprise, though it is nifty when archaeology can document this sort of thing.

“To learn more I tracked down a photograph of Shu-ilishu’s cylinder seal in a substantial volume found in the Museum Library—Collection de Clercq. Gathered together in the 19th Century by a wealthy man, this collection is composed of objects purchased from dealers with little, if any, provenience data presented. Therefore, we do not know where Shu-ilishu’s cylinder came from. Despite this, I asked our Museum’s Photo Studio to make a black and white negative and several prints of the cylinder’s rollout impression. I have subsequently published this rollout in several places—renewing interest in Shuilishu. This cylinder seal has now become commonplace in discussions of Persian Gulf archaeology and the Indus Civilization’s contacts with Mesopotamia.

“My late colleague Edith Porada, the world’s leading expert on Mesopotamian seals in her day, confirmed the information presented in Oppenheim’s work. She also noted that the seal had been re-cut from its original appearance (not unusual) and that its style was Late Akkadian (ca. 2200–2113 BC), possibly even from the succeeding Ur III period (ca. 2113–2004 BC). During the spring of 2003, when the topic of Meluhha came up during a seminar I was addressing, I showed Porada’s letter to a small group of students.

“Thinking afresh about the re-cutting of the seal, I decided that the reading of the inscription should probably be checked. Did it really say that Shu-ilishu was a translator of Meluhhan ? I took the photograph I had copied from the Collection de Clercq to Steve Tinney, my colleague in the Museum’s Babylonian Section .”

The founder of Mesopotamia’s Akkadian dynasty, Sargon the Great, boasted that : The ships from Meluhha / the ships from Magan / the ships from Dilmun / he made tie-up alongside / the quay of Akkad (translated by Samuel Noah Kramer).

Magan and Dilmun are modern Oman and Bahrain, respectively. This inscription, other cuneiform documents, and recent archaeology in the Arabian Gulf tell us about the maritime activity between Akkad (modern Iraq) and Meluhha (modern Pakistan and India) during the 3rd millennium BC..

“He was kind enough to look at it and confirm everything, at least as far as the rather poor image allowed. It occurred to me that someone should probably track down the original seal and make a fresh impression, but where was the “Collection de Clercq” now—in Paris? I was sure I would get to it someday, but that is where I left things until a splendid piece of luck dropped it in my lap.

“In the spring of 2004, the “First Cities” show opened at the Metropolitan Museum of Art in New York. On June 10, 2004, I visited the Met with a couple of students. The show was a truly magnificent display, with treasures from the Near East and India set out in a very attractive and informed way. The Penn Museum’s material from Puabi’s grave at Ur was there, as was the British Museum’s famous Royal Standard of Ur. The “Priest-King” from Mohenjo-daro had been lent by the Pakistan Government—he looked great !—and the Louvre had also been very generous with its loan of various objects.

“The students and I did our tour through the galleries and then lingered, reading labels again or with greater concentration than on the first pass through. I was in a gallery near the “Priest-King” when I spotted Shuilishu’s cylinder and a clear impression of its rollout. It was a part of the Louvre’s loan. The “Collection de Clercq” had found its way to the Louvre, and Joan Aruz, the Met curator of the show, had been good enough to put it in her loan request. I showed the students and retold the story of why it is important.

“I knew that Tinney should see the fresh impression, but maybe I could do even better. After consulting with Aruz and her staff, it was agreed that I could approach Annie Caubet, Conservateur Général, Départment des Antiquitiés Orientales at the Musée du Louvre, and seek permission to make a fresh impression while Shu-ilishu’s seal was at the Met. Caubet’s answer was virtually immediate and positive. We could make a fresh impression and it could be a part of the “loan” collections at the Penn Museum. This was all accomplished, and Tinney reconfirmed the original translation. The Penn Museum now has a very fine rollout of the seal in its collections, where it can be used as a research tool for many, many years.

“The writing of Meluhha (the Indus script) remains undeciphered, in spite of many claims to the contrary. The inscriptions are short, and this makes the job of decipherment very difficult. To break the code, what is probably needed is a body of bilingual texts, like Jean-Francois Champollion had when he deciphered the Egyptian hieroglyphics on the Rosetta Stone. The presence in Akkad of a translator of the Meluhhan language suggests that he may have been literate and could read the undeciphered Indus script. This in turn suggests that there may be bilingual Akkadian/Meluhhan tablets somewhere in Mesopotamia. Although such documents may not exist, Shu-ilishu’s cylinder seal offers a glimmer of hope for the future in unraveling the mystery of the Indus script.”

* * * 

I might continue with a piece on the fascinating linguistic and etymological  evolution of Indian language from Mleccha and Arya vaach of those hoary times in pre-history ! 


Journal : The River Sarasvati And Its People

Part I : The Saga Of The Quest

The Saga of the Quest for the River Sarasvati :

M.A. Jayashree, M.A. Narasimhan and Haribhau Vaze

There has been many a saga in the history of mankind that has captured the imagination of generations of humanity. In our millennium we speak of adventures of Marco Polo, Columbus’ discovery of the shores of America, Amundsen’s expedition to the North Pole, Vasco da Gama reaching the shores of Bharata and many more. All these look dramatic and fascinating when we realise they were undertaken more with courage and determination than in the security of reliable information. Yet they succeeded in obtaining for posterity enormous benefits in terms of the perspective about the world that we lived in.

One such saga of recent times is the quest for river Sarasvati. Looking back, we see the formidable obstacles that one faced in trying to investigate the history of a river that was non-existent and believed to be a myth : Was there was a real physical river called Sarasvati or was it just a myth, a poetic creation of the Aryans ? If such a river existed where did it flow ? How are we to trace its source, course and termination ? If it did exist : why, how and when did the river disappear ? If it was an ancient river with claims as the cradle of an ancient civilization, is there any archaeological evidence of the its banks ?

Louis Renous 1947 map of the Sarasvati basin

Added to the confusion was the reverential and emotive association Bharatiyas had with the River Sarasvati, that made them identify every other river, big or small, with the divine river Sarasvati itself. They still have the same inclusive approach and attitude towards the rive Ganga. Thus the Haradvati that flows in the north-west region was also Sarasvati. It was the third (invisble) river at Sangam, the confluence of Ganaga and Yamuna at Prayag. A branch of Ganga near Calcutta, a river flowing from Abu to Khambayat in Gujarat, the river that joins the ocean at the Prabhasa Kshetra … all are called Sarasvati. Under such a condition, in the hostile atmosphere of the world of historians monopolised by western scholars who were bent upon proving that the existence of river Sarasvati was a myth, that all literary evidence were figments of imagination and who, demanding material evidence for proof, declared that the quest and the search for it was an exercise in futility, there were bravehearts who proceeded undeterred.

The “Quest For River Sarasvati” scholars came together under the banner of Bharatiya Itihasa Sankalana Samiti. Yes, we call them brave because they staked their international academic reputation to chase a myth and to prove that the seeming mirage was in fact a reality. The academic world scoffed at them and laughed at the venture. Well, it did last for more than a decade. Most of them are no longer with us now to celebrate the fruition of their foundational quest. This post is to honour and pay homage to them.

Our deepest appreciation and gratitude goes to pioneer Sri Sridhara Vaman Wakanker and his team Sarasvati Samshodhana Mandal. At the same time we recall that the quest for river Sarasvati has a long history, spanning nearly two centuries. All scholars and lovers of Bharata and its heritage fell under the spell of this mysterious river Sarasvati, after going through the vast Vedic literature. They did their best to verify the physical existence of the river with tools then available. The voluntary attempts of Oldham (1893), Wadia (1938), Amal Ghosh(1960), H.S. Parikh (1965), WilHelmi (1969), Alwin, Goudse, and Dr. Hegde(1978) merit our scholarly attention.

Extensive studies to survey the invisible course of Sarasvati in 1942 by Gen Cunningham, Arthur A. Macdonnel, A.B. Keith and Aurel Stein were well publicized. In 1963, Dr Narasimha Narayana Godbole surveyed the route of the Sarasvati in Rajasthan. Dr. M.A. Krishnan gives us in detail the course of the river in his work, Geology of India and Burma, published in 1968. Dr M.N. Godbole’s monumental work, Rgvedic Sarasvati, based on geological research throws more light on many of the ticklish problems associated with the quest.

The current quest had its origin in 1981, when Babasaheb Apte Smarak Samiti, Nagpur, was celebrating the District History Day at Kurukshetra, in the presence of Sri M.N. Pingale, the Working President of Babasaheb Apte Smarak Samiti, who drew the attention of the audience to the need and relevance of a research work on the lost Vedic river Sarasvati and the possible consequences of that research on the ancient history of Bharata. Dr. Vishnu Sridhar Wakankar, the senior most archaeologist of the country then, explained with great fervor the archaeological importance of the issue. Immediately there was a vociferous demand from the audience for setting up of a Samiti for such a “Quest.” Thus, the All India Project of Sarasvati Shodhan was born.

It took nearly four years to investigate, consolidate, plan and recruit eminent scholars to form a team to launch the Sarasvati Shodhan project. It was termed as Quest Mandal Expedition and was inaugurated on Tuesday, the 19th Nov. 1985 by the steersman of the Quest, Sri M.N. Pingale. The Quest Mandal headed by Padmashri Dr. V.S. Wakankar, with a team of scholars belonging to all branches of knowledge, set out for Adi Badri in Himachal Pradesh, the presumed source of river Sarasvati. Points of fact were jotted down meticulously as and when they emerged during the visits. Photographs were taken wherever they were considered relevant. Audio tapes, about 19, were effectively put to use to collect more important information related to the river. The notes thus prepared covered a wide canvas including literary sources, art, history, poetry, archaeological remains, oral observations, traditional references, etc.

The Quest team also recorded age-old stories and songs which were full of reverential references to the Sarasvati River from the Charans who reside in Palloo, Bikaner and Karani Devi of Rajasthan. The Charans, as is well known, make their living by singing folk-songs with stories of past heroes and legends.

The Quest got a fortunate filip when the team was provided with clinching evidence about the dried-up river Sarasvati. The Arid Zone Research Institute gave authentic data that literally broke through the great haze of obstruction holding up the quest. A NASA satellite launched in 1972 had taken pictures of a dried-up huge river which ran from the Himalayas to the Rann of Kachchh. The images had been analysed by many scientists associated with scientific institutions of India but none had recognised its historic worth. The compiled information handed over by Dr. Agarwal consisted of studies done on this dried-up river bed by Bimal Ghose et al. (1979), Ramasamy, Bakliwal and Verma (1991), Yash Pal et al. (1980).

The accurate scientific data regarding the course of the river and the time when it went dry gave a powerful impetus to the Quest. The images sent by LandSat disclosed the following : The width of the Ghaggar Sarasvati bed was on an average between 6 and 8 km from its entry in Punjab to present-day Marot in Pakistan; the course of Markanda River got diverted to north-east of Kshatrana and even today the river Sarasvati flows through this route during rainy seasons; the dried-up Y-2 route indicated the width of the present day Choutang River and its confluence with Ghaggar near Suratgarh.

It was clear from the received images that the ancient Ghaggar River got bifurcated near Anupgarh, with one branch getting lost near Marot and the other losing itself at Baireena. It meant that during that period the banks of Sarasvati River had spread to these two places. Incidentally, these details point to a possibility of the Vinashana Tirthin Sarasvati, where Balaram of the Mahabharata offered his reverence to his late father, and that it could be situated near about these two places. The Quest team therefore decided to search for :

1. Information about the course of the river from Adi Badri

through the plains and regions close to Sindhusagar.

2. Traces and collections of the remains and reminiscences

in the environment.

But the search route as indicated by the LandSat was a stupendous, as the dried-up bed was expansive. Dr. Wakankar studied the dried-up bed of Sarasvati with his fellow researchers from archaeological point of view. He was thus able to concentrate their month-long quest only on select spots. The Quest team went though Adi Badri, Ambala District, where the Sarasvati slides into the plains after crossing the mountainous area through Kanthghar, and then to the Shivalik mountain ranges starting from Jagadhari(Yugandhara), beyond which stands the mountain Manu, where the Sarasvati, icy and hidden, flows as an undercurrent through the cracks, crevices and cleavages of the mountains.

The team also visited YamunaNagar, Sarasvata Nagar (Mustafabad), and then on to Kurukshetra where the seed of the whole quest had been sown. At Kurukshetra, under the guidance of Pandit Sthanudatta Sharma, the team went to the actual site of the river Sarasvati in the celebrated city. Remnants and reports related to the site gave the team enough information, motivating them to study in depth the city of Kurukshetra in the context of the course of the lost river. Stone implements of the Prehistoric period were collected in a large quantities from all places visited by the team : painted mud-pots of pre-Harappan period, which are also available in the valleys of Sarasvati (Ghaggar) and Drshadvati (Choutang) at Bhagvanpur, Banavali, Sirisha, Mitthal, Raja Karn ka Keela, Doulatpur, Mirjapur, Sudha, Balu, Kudal, Agroha and nearby places. The team also did a close study of 20 to 30 metres long sand-dunes of Bikaner. In Gujarat, the team visited Ambaji mountains, where Bhel trees are in abundance, and then on to Koteshvar where one stream of the Sarasvati flows underneath.


The river, after playing hide and seek, finally emerges on the surface at Siddapur to meet the Nala Sarovar. This mountain range, part of Ambaji, is known as Mainaka, the source of Gurjar Sarasvati. Kunwar, on the banks of Nanuran (Nanukaccha), where the Sarasvati enters the ocean in sevenfolds (saptadha), was the next destination of study. Now Nanu is a sandy desert. Near one of the seven streams, Dr. V.S. Wakankar found pieces of an egg of a Shakha Mrga that helped him to conclude the period of Kunwar could be at least 25-50 thousand years BC. Later, the team came across an old ocean coast harbour called Lothal, which was an ancient city of Nanukaccha. A dockyard specially meant for repair of ships was discovered there. Now there has been an in depth study of Lothal showing the maritime capabilities of our ancestors.

Travelling eastward, on the banks of the Gurjar Sarasvati of ancient times, the team came to the vicinity of the holy Somnath mandir at the junction of rivers Gautami, Hiranmayi and Sarasvati. Thus, the Quest pilgrimage covering a distance of about 4000 km came to an end. Curiously, this Quest did not come up with just a report on the course, date and the civilization that prospered on the banks of the fabled river, as it happens with almost all historical expeditions. It also indicated the possible sites on the banks of Sarasvati for archaeological excavation, the study of which would meet the challenge of proving whether this water mass, which was still flowing underground in most of the places, was really the same river that had its source in Himalayan glaciers.

That seeming impossibility evoked worldwide interest. Many teams of scientists came and did their own investigations and confirmed the existence of the river Sarasvati, proving that most of the narrative history of Bharat, be it folk or of the Vedas, was factual. The spin-off of this information was the opening of another avenue which has never been the forte of history : to resurrect the lost river and bring the hidden Gupta Gamini Sarasvati onto the surface !

That was the task taken up, again, by the Akhil Bharatiya Itihasa Sankalana Yojana under the title Sarasvati Nadi Shodh Prakalpa. The Prakalpa is now engaged in enabling the waters of Sarasvati flow once again along its course, so that millions of hectares of parched land of this blessed country can become green and give life to over 200 million people. It also provides strength to the devout and vindicates their faith when he and she take a holy dip in their sacred river Sarasvati.

The Prakalpa plans to create National Water Grid in order to reach the Brahmaputra flood waters to Kanyakumari, making every river south of Vidhyas in India a perennial one (jeevanadi) and potentially adding 90 million acres of additional wetland, and enabling four-crop cultivation with availability of water round the year. This revolution would empower rural India consisting of more than half a million villages.

The revival of river Sarasvati is proceeding apace, as part of the National Water Grid : inter-linking of rivers, master plan drawn by National Water Development Agency. The waters of Manasarovar flowing through rivers Sutlej and Beas have already been brought to the Rajasthan Nahar (called Sarasvati Mahanadi Roop Nahar). The Sarasvati Nahar waters have now reached up to Gadhra Road in Barmer District, after traversing a distance of about 1000 km. Another 150 km extension of this Nahar will ensure that Sarasvati River waters will reach Rann of Kachchh and Gujarat.

It’s a miracle of gigantic proportion, my dear reader ! Especially when you consider that the desert of Rajasthan was threatening to extend up to Haryana and even Delhi, the capital city, barely a couple decades before.

The Saraswati Basin Civilisation


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