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: A SECTION; Pg. A23 HEADLINE: A Hindu Quest for Some Holy Water; Attempt to Unearth Ancient Waterway May Affect Indian History and Politics BYLINE: Rama Lakshmi, Special to The Washington Post DATELINE: KATGARH, India In a verdant valley amid the foothills of the Himalayas, Hindu villagers prayed in silence and piously threw petals into a small puddle they believe was a mighty river some 4,500 years ago. Not far away, an archeologist leaned over a trench to examine freshly excavated pieces of broken pottery. "We have found remains of so many ancient settlements here. There must have been a very important river flowing," said Sanjay Manjul, 35, squinting as he held up a piece against the sun. "It must have been our holy Saraswati River." Manjul is not the only one looking for the Saraswati, which was mentioned in the oldest Hindu religious text, the Rig Veda and which devout Hindus believe disappeared mysteriously thousands of years ago. Dozens of archeologists like him have fanned across the northern Indian state of Haryana in the last seven months to look for traces of the river. A group of geologists and glaciologists, armed with satellite imagery maps and remote sensing data, are studying rocks, glaciers and sediments in the Himalayas, seeking any trace of the river's course. A heady mix of religion, politics, science and archeology drives their efforts, and the results of the search may not only challenge some fixed notions about the earliest civilization on the Indian subcontinent, but could also confirm fears among India's secular historians that the country's Hindu-nationalist ruling party is trying to rewrite history to suit its agenda. For decades, history books have maintained that the Indus Valley people, who settled an area that straddles modern India and Pakistan about 3000 BC, were the subcontinent's earliest civilization, preceding the birth of Hinduism. Historians have held that the Aryans, said to be the descendents of an Indo-European race who came to India from near the Caspian Sea around 1500 BC, gave birth to Hindu thought. Hinduism became the region's predominant religion. Today, 84 percent of India's 1 billion people are Hindus.
That predominance, however, did not prevent India from embracing secularism when it achieved independence in 1947 and enshrining it in the country's first constitution. Ruled by the staunchly secularist Congress party for most of the past five decades, India pursued policies designed to ensure equality for Muslims, Christians and followers of other minority religions. Nevertheless, many Hindus regarded their religion and culture as supreme. A political force since the 1920s, Hindu nationalism reached the peak of its influence in 1998, when the Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP) formed a coalition government with several other parties. The BJP-led coalition set about a slow but systematic program to place historians sympathetic to Hindu-nationalist ideology in charge of research institutions and to introduce changes in history textbooks in schools. Last summer, the Culture Ministry appointed a special committee of experts to prove that the Saraswati was not merely a mythological river, dismissed by historians as nothing more than a figment of the imagination of Hindu sages who praise it as the "greatest of mothers, greatest of rivers and greatest of goddesses" in the Vedas. If the panel succeeds, the birth of Hinduism would be pushed back at least 1,000 years by establishing that the ancient Indus Valley civilization was Hindu in character. "Saraswati is not only a matter of Hindu faith, but also fact," said Ravindra Singh Bisht, director of the Archaeological Survey of India, who supervises excavation along what is believed to be the course of the river. "The overwhelming archeological evidence of ancient settlements along the course of what was once the Saraswati River proves that our earliest civilizations were not confined to the Indus river alone. Those who wrote the Hindu Vedas on the banks of the Saraswati were the same as the Indus Valley people." The BJP-led government already has taken steps to make these findings official. In October, it ordered several significant changes in the history textbooks, one of which was to change the name of the Indus Valley civilization to the Saraswati River civilization. The first real boost to the Saraswati believers came in the 1970s, when American satellite images showed signs of channels of water in northern and western India that disappeared long ago. When popular folk memory was matched with the images, some historians ecstatically claimed they had cracked the riddle of the revered river. In 1998, groundwater experts dug wells along the dry bed identified in the images and they found potable water, even under vast stretches of desert. "We still need to study the sediments to prove the origin of the river was in the Himalayan glacier like our Vedas claimed," said Baldev Sahai, a member of the Culture Ministry's expert committee, who was the first, in 1980, to use remote sensing data to study the course of the river. "After that, we can proudly claim to be the oldest living civilization and culture with an unbroken link to our past." Once the entire course of the river, "from the Himalayas to the Arabian sea" is established, the Culture Ministry plans to turn archeological sites of lost cities along the
Saraswati into tourist hubs. And water specialists in the government wish to give new life to the Saraswati River, by reviving old water channels. The Hindu-nationalist government's quest for the Saraswati has split historians along political lines, with some accusing the government of giving a deliberate Hindu slant to Indian history and others alleging that much of Indian history was written from a Eurocentric perspective by British colonizers and needed to be "Indianized." "Hinduism was not brought to us by a foreign race called Aryans. It was born here on our land. The Rig Veda was composed here on the banks of Saraswati by indigenous people around the time of the Indus Valley period," said Arun Kesarwani, professor of ancient history at Kurukshetra University. "That is why the quest for Saraswati is important. It will shatter all the prevalent theories to pieces." But many say that history is being distorted to suit the ruling political ideology. "This is an assault on history," said historian Arjun Dev. "This version of the past is crucial to their political and religious ideology of Hindu supremacy. They will go to any lengths to achieve this -- even put forth a fake, invented past." "It is propaganda work," said Suraj Bhan, a retired archeologist. "The quest for Saraswati is not about history, it is myth-making." For the devout Hindus who pray at tiny ponds and puddles, the Saraswati is both a real river and a deity. "In our hearts we know this is the water of holy Saraswati," said Prem Vallabh, 75, head priest at a Saraswati temple. "We don't need any scientific proof
Could someone specify which Vedic reference (which book which verses) refer to this river? In Sanskrit this name may be decomposed as 'saras' meaning a lake or water body, + 'vati' meaning a female associated with it. Loosely it suggests a "water goddess". Indeed there is a commonly worshipped deity in Hinduism by this name who is the guardian of language, learning and knowledge in general. A large number of non-Vedic goddesses such as Lakshmi and fertility goddesses are also associated with water, either ocean or lake. Thus the Vedic association of this name needs confirmation.
In answer to your question The Rig Veda refers on several occasions to the Sarasvati. There are two hymns to devoted to the river/goddess in Book 7, hymns 95-6. 97 is a plea for marriage and children where the river-woman stands for fertility. Paul B
The article has some questionable statements. The river has been identified [by whom?, see Wikipedia:Avoid weasel terms ] with various present-day or historical rivers, particularly the Ghaggar-Hakra river in India and Pakistan. Recent finding[sp] [this suggests that the "finding" has legitimacy] suggest the Ghaggar-Hakra river did once flow in great strength [but not in Vedic times, if at all], and was of major importance to the Indus Valley civilization, but that it dried up due to the redirection of its tributaries, at the latest in 1900 BC [not later than 30,000 BC, if at all] but perhaps much earlier. Clearly this is [not at all (because we don't know if the Ghaggar had anything to do with Vedic civilization)] of great importance in establishing the date of the Rigveda years] See:
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http://www.ee.iitkgp.ernet.in/~soumitro/bt/archives/saraswati.pdf by Ashoke Mukherjee of Breakthrough, a science journal. Hijacking India's History also at  Copy of Washigton post headline: A Hindu Quest for Some Holy Water; Attempt to Unearth Ancient Waterway May Affect Indian History and Politics also at 
SkepticalContrarian 23:26, 12 Oct 2004 (UTC)
I have moved sources and links into the entry, since no one else has done so. The statement " TheHelmand River in Afghanistan, which historically bore the name 'sarasvati' " does not tell us who gave it this identification with the Rig Veda river, nor when. Was it so called by locals at an early date? Or was the identification made by an Indian or Arab geographer? Why should we think this has relevance? This is pabulum as it stands. Wetman 01:36, 19 Oct 2004 (UTC) Nobody in historical memory 'gave' the Helmand the name 'Sarasvati'. It's simply that the river was called the Sarasvati in the past. The fact that it's the same name as the vedic river has led to the argument that it was the orginal 'sarasvati' of the Vedas. The Helmand is important to this issue and certainly should not be censored out.
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1 organization 2 Indra/Shiva 3 Page move, scope of the article and recent edits by 184.108.40.206 4 Plaska 5 Oxus, Kabul river 6 Oxus Amu Darya Rasa Volga 7 7.36.6 8 Sarasvati in the late Rigvedic books o 8.1 Minor point on RV 10.17 o 8.2 Mandala 10 9 Map 10 Sarasvati or Saraswati 11 Deletion of ref. sentences by Dab & Rudra 12 Sutlej Flowed to the Southwest to join Beas not Saraswati 13 Protected 14 WP:INDIA Banner/Rajasthan workgroup Addition
this article needs a clearer division of scriptural references, geographical facts, and forwarded theories. Some material may better be exported to Ghaggar River. Afaik, the drying up of the Ghaggar is dated to 2000-1500. By 1500 BC, the Indo-Aryans were in the Punjab even according to the AIT (the probable dates of immigration ranges around 1750), and afaik the theory has been forwarded that Sarasvati came to play such a prominent role in the Vedas precisely because of the terrifying fact that she had disappeared. Bottom line, lots of people accept Ghaggar as Sarasvati, without necessarily rejecting a migration date of ca. the 18th century. Another common proposition is that the name moved witht the migrating tribes, i.e. it was Helmand before migration, Ghaggar after migration, and even other rivers further East in late Vedic times. I'll try to dig up some references. dab (ᛏ) 30 June 2005 11:46 (UTC)
The article says that "Indra was the river deity of the Sarasvati river, the disappearance of the Sarasvati river may have been one of the causes for the diminishing popularity of Indra in Vedic culture. Indra may have been "replaced" by the similar deity Shiva, who is the river deity of the Ganges." Err, what? Where does this idea come from (apart from
User:Batten8 that is)? I've never heard of this stuff. What's the source for thse theories? Paul B 23:32, 17 Aug 2005 (UTC) There is the theory that there is a continuity between Indra and Shiva. If I remember correctly, the information was from this site : "We also note that Shiva is the deity of the Ganges region which became the center of Indic civilization in the post-Harappan era. Vedic deities, like Indra and Agni, are those of the Sarasvati river to which the Harappan era belongs." So this theory tries to link the Indra-Shiva continuity theory with the disappearance of the Sarasvati River. I agree that this should be written in more detail or with more sources. I'm moving the twos sentences to the talk page for the moment, somembody can put them back later. Indra was the river deity of the Sarasvati river, the disappearance of the Sarasvati river may have been one of the causes for the diminishing popularity of Indra in Vedic culture. Indra may have been "replaced" by the similar deity Shiva, who is the river deity of the Ganges. --Batten8 09:58, 21 August 2005 (UTC)
 Page move, scope of the article and recent edits by 220.127.116.11
Could we move this page to Sarasvati river? I think the prefix "Vedic" is unnecessary and confusing, because the Sarasvati for example also occurs in later texts like the Mahabharata. I wanted to suggest this move already some time ago. There is also one thing I'm not quite sure of: Should the article be spelt as "Sarasvati" or "Saraswati"? Also, in which article to we put the IVC, Rig Veda, Geology and Helmland related information? Obviously, the name Ghaggar-Hakra is rather new and didn't exist at the time of the IVC, nor at the time of the Rig Veda. And AFAIK most scholars do agree that at least some references to the Sarasvati River in the Rig Veda do indeed refer to the present Ghaggar-Hakra river and the Punjab region. So while it is of course disputed if the IVC people also refereed to this river as Sarasvati, we know that they surely didn't refer to it as the Ghaggar-Hakra river. I would propose to put both the IVC and the RV related information in the Sarasvati River article, and if there are controversies they can still be explained in the article. The same goes for the Helmland river, that should also be treated in this article. It would have been nice if User:18.104.22.168 Contributions would have discusssed his large-scale changes beforehand. While moving most of the text to Ghaggar-Hakra River, some very relevant information was unfortunately also deleted by him. I have to revert the article back, and will then try to balance out the information between the two articles. I'll try to keep the changes made by 22.214.171.124 though. I would like to hear to some suggestions about these things. --Machaon 02:12, 8 October 2005 (UTC)
I also merged the contents of Hakra River and Ghaggar River to the new article GhaggarHakra River, as was proposed by User:126.96.36.199. --Machaon 11:38, 8 October 2005 (UTC) I support move of this article to Sarasvati River. However, this article consistently confuses arguments abut the Ghaggar-Hakra River with arguments about the Vedic Sarasvati River as described in the texts. Sure there can be a short section discussing the proposed identification. But details about IVC archaeology and geology should go to the Ghaggar-Hakra article. Also, did you read the information that was "deleted"? There were about five paragraphs saying exactly the same thing, along the lines of "recent satellite picutures, 500 IVC settlements, etc.". This stuff should be stated once, coherently, on the Ghaggar-Hakra article; this is not even disputed material, everybody believes (I think) that there were settlements along the River pre-2500 BC. It's just the conflating with the name "Sarasvati", a Hindutva idiosyncrasy, that makes the whole thing confusing. I have no problem with saying that Hindutva scholars make the identification. But the discussion of archaeology doesn't belong here: this is what we mean by the "principle of least surprise": Assume somebody is interested in IVC archaeology; they would expect this information in an article about IVC archaeology and geography of Pakistan, not in some article about Vedic texts. Baad 10:22, 9 October 2005 (UTC) Ok, let's move the article to Sarasvati River then. We only have the Ghaggar-Hakra River since two days, that's why I wrote my IVC and geology additions into this article, rather than having to split them up between two different articles Hakra River and Ghaggar River. Now that we have a single Ghaggar-Hakra River article, I think yes we could move the IVC and geology related stuff to Ghaggar-Hakra River. You're oversimplifying things when you say that the identification of the Sarasvati with Ghaggar-Hakra is "Hindutva". Most scholars (I think) agree that at least some references in the Rig Veda, and probably most references in later texts like the Mahabharata and the Brahmanas, refer to the Ghaggar-Hakra. What some scholars dispute is if all references to the Sarasvati in the RV refer to Ghaggar-Hakra. Anyway, scholars who identify the Sarasvati with GhaggarHakra include Oldham, the Allchins, Gregory Possehl, Jane MacIntosh, Mughal, V.N. Mishra, Kazanas (1999:19), Sharfe (1996:358) and others. Even Witzel does equate some rigvedic ref's to the Sarasvati with Ghaggar-Hakra (e.g. 1995: 343, 349, 318, 320). Anyway, this is somehow a controversial subject, and therefore I do think that it is better to have two (or more) articles, and that IVC/Geology stuff is on Ghaggar-Hakra. There were some deletions by the anon user, though they may have happened by accident. For example, he added stuff on the Helmand but deleted some information on the same subject like this: "If the river name were transferred from Afghanistan to the Punjab, the transfer must have occurred before the Iranian language began to use the "h phoneme"." [(Bryant 2001)] There were some other minor things (and I didn't search them all), but the point is that such large-scale changes should have been discussed. I will move IVC/Geology related material to the other article shortly. --Machaon 17:00, 9 October 2005 (UTC)
In the Mahabharata, Skanda Purana and other texts the Sarasvati is associated with the Plaska tree. Some have argued that Plaska could be a Ficus species, probably ficus lacor or ficus infectoria. Kalyanaraman, S. (1999) The River Sarasvati: Legend, Myth and Reality
 Oxus, Kabul river
Thank you Dab for the cleaning up and the edits. About the "citation needed":
Furthermore, the superlatives of the Rigvedic Sarasvati (e.g. RV 2.41, 7.95, 7.36) would rather apply to the nearby Oxus or Indus than to the Helmand river. o This sentence refers to the fact that these superlatives don't really apply to the Helmand, except perhaps to local peasants unfamiliar with mightier rivers nearby like the Oxus or Indus. If they were familiar with these nearby rivers, they probably wouldn't have used these superlatives for the Helmand. (e.g. see Elst: "The Rg Veda in Afghanistan?"). I am unsure that this is a 'fact' since the Helmand is, after all, the largest river of Afghanistan. There can be no question that the Indus is mightier, and possibly also the Oxus. But is this supposed to be an argument for identifying Sarasvati as either Indus or Oxus, or is this actually an argument supporting the Helmand identification (since it is certainly possible to be familiar with the Helmand but not the Indus, while it is probably impossible to be familiar with the Ghaggar but not the Indus). dab (ᛏ) 11:19, 30 April 2006 (UTC) The superlatives of the Sarasvati are an unlikely description of a relative backwater like the Helmand except for absolute provincials who had never seen the nearby Oxus or Indus. It's not the most important argument, but could maybe be stated in some form somewhere. --Rayfield 13:08, 30 April 2006 (UTC)
Moved to talk: Others point out that if the rigvedic people would have known nearby rivers like the Indus or Oxus, they probably wouldn't have used the superlatives of the rigvedic Sarasvati (e.g. RV 2.41, 7.95, 7.36) for the relatively smaller Helmand River. And about Erdosy:
"it would be just as plausible to assume that Saraswati was a Sanskrit term indigenous to India and was later imported by the speakers of Avestan into Iran. The fact that the Zend Avesta is aware of areas outside the Iranian plateau while the Rigveda is ignorant of anything west of the Indus basin would certainly support such an assertion." (Bryant 2001: 133)........Erdosy's proposition that the Rigveda is ignorant of the geography west of the Indus basin is not a premise to,
but rather a position in the Sarasvati debate. The Nadistuti sukta at least (10.75.6) is aware of western tributaries of the Indus, including the Kabul River. o But the term "Indus Basin" shouldn't it also include the Indus tributaries? Anyway, the second sentence of the citation is not really about the Sarasvati, only the first. We could also cite only the first sentence of the citation. --Rayfield 20:25, 28 April 2006 (UTC) well, yes; but this rather drives home the point of the proximity of Helmand and Indus. The Kabul River and the Helmand originate within a few kilometers of each other, and you have to cross a single pass to get from the Khabul to the Helmand. I am not opposed to quoting Erdosy directly, but the whole argument here seems extremely flawed. Either Erdosy is being horribly misquoted or he has no idea of the relationship of Sanskrit of Avestan. If Sarasvati would have been 'imported by speakers of Avestan', it would, as a loan, not have been changed to 'hara-'; the whole point of the Avestan equation is that the name must have been preIranian. I tried to salvage the part of the argument that makes sense. Unfortunately, Erdosy (1989) is lacking bibliographical reference. What exactly are we quoting here? I think it might be better to attribute the "out of India" argument to a more quoteable and coherent author. Be that as it may, it is certainly not generally accepted that the Rigveda is ignorant of anything east of the Khabul; Kochhar, for example, identifies several Rigvedic rivers as tributaries of the Helmand. I won't say that I am convinced by this, but it goes to show the 'conclusion, not premise' part. (personally, I do not think that much geography may be distilled from the early hymns; the Nadistuti is straightforward to interpret, but the early geography is fluid and hazy;) dab (ᛏ) 11:19, 30 April 2006 (UTC) I assume that "Erdosy, George. 1989. "Ethnicity to the Rigveda and Its Bearing on the Question of Indo-European Origins." South Asian Studies 5:35-47" is quoted. I might verify this later. Until we have a better quotation, we could still use the first sentence of the quotation. I'm not sure on what reference or argument you argue that Sarasvati would not have been changed to "Hara". --Rayfield 13:08, 30 April 2006 (UTC)
 Oxus Amu Darya Rasa Volga
If the river Oxus Amu Darya was the Saraswat river mentioned in the Rig Veda,it does take the age of Rig Veda to 3rd Millenium BC. It makes sense then that the Rig Veda never mentions about the Indus Valley civilization because in that time when Rig Veda was composed the Aryans were still in Central Asia. If Volga was Rasa and Amu Darya was Saraswat has there been enough excavations done in these river valleys. Before establishing the location of Saraswati river in India - Gaggar enough excavation should
be done in Russia in Volga, Amu Darya , Sta Arya and Caspian sea ( home land of Kasyapa clan ). —Preceding unsigned comment added by 188.8.131.52 (talk) this is patent nonsense. Most of the RV was clearly composed in the Punjab. It it contains references to the Oxus, that may correspond to traces of the early 2nd millennium situation, that's all. dab () 14:59, 5 November 2007 (UTC)
I removed this: In RV 7.36.6, the Sindhu is referred to as the mother of the Sarasvati, i.e. the Sarasvati is here described as a tributary of the Indus.(Elst, Koenraad: The Official Pro-Invasion Argument at Last. Elst refers to Hans Hock 1999) this is apparently misquoted. 7.36.6 says no such thing,this is the verse that addresses Sarasvati as sindhumata "mother of rivers". Whoever interpreted this as Sindhu being the mother of Sarasvati has never heard of a tatpurusha. I'm not sure what to make of the reference; somebody seems to be debunking someone else in the tired AIT debate, but Hock 1999 is not listed in the references, and something seems to have become garbled by whoever inserted this. dab (ᛏ) 11:19, 30 April 2006 (UTC) The reference is to Hans Hock's paper "Through a glass darkly" in Aryan and Non-Aryan in South Asia, Ann Arbor 1999, ed. Bronkhorst and Deshpande. On page 164, it reads: "...which declares the Sindhu to be the mother of the Sarasvati. .... (RV 7.36.6ab) "When the honorable (rivers come) together longing(ly), (and) Sarasvati as the seventh, whose mother is the Sindhu..." --Rayfield 12:54, 30 April 2006 (UTC) Bahuvrihi and tatpurusha can be distinguished in Vedic according to which member retains the accent: the first in a bahuvrihi, the second in a tatpurusha. In 7.36.6, the accent is on the i of sindhu, as can be verified from The TITUS Database. Hock is correct, Griffith is mistaken. rudra 22:54, 18 February 2007 (UTC)
 Sarasvati in the late Rigvedic books
I think that this title is not very fortunate, because it is disputed which are the late books, and especially because scholars argue that for example a late book may also contain some early hymns. I think the title "Sarasvati and other rivers" and a title "Sarasvati as goddess" would be useful. It can still be marked in the text if a hymn is late or early.-Rayfield 13:13, 30 April 2006 (UTC)
Also late hymns (RV 8.21; 10.64; 10.177) describe in the present tense the river's greatness and say that many kings lived along its banks. The Rig Veda has no allusions to the drying up of the Sarasvati River. "10.177 also quoted by Kazanas does not actually refer to the Sarasvati." I think this should maybe actually read 10.17.7, not 10.177. RV 8.21 may refer to Citra on Sarasvati in the Kuruksetra.--Rayfield 13:57, 30 April 2006 (UTC) I agree with your edits. Still, there is consensus that 1 and 10 are the youngest books, and I don't know on what grounds this could be disputed. There is, in fact, some debate about books 8 and 9: some people seem to claim 9 contains the oldest bits altogether, others seem to think most of 9 dates to between 2-7 and 1/10; similarly, 8 seems to contain both older and newer bits. Fortunately, that's not the issue here. But I agree that the title was unfortunate: I came up with it under the influence of Kazanas' statement that there are lots of references to great Sarasvati in late books, and I decided to collect those. It turned out that there are just two invocations of S as a river in book 10, and none in book 1: the Nadistuti list and the list of three in 10.64. 8.21 may be early or late, no idea, but it just says "a lot of petty kings (rajakas) live along Sarasvati": no reverence, no evidence of greatness, just a straightforward geographical statement, so I preferred listing that verse under the discussion of the "course of S". What we are left with is the interesting observation that S seems to undergo the transition from a (specific) river goddess to the general goddess (of wisdom, waters etc.) in the late books 1 and 10. There are two late listings of S as a river, one placing it between Yamuna and Sutlej, and the other naming it with Sindhu [as we mention emerging as the greatest river in the late RV] and Sarayu [far from prominent in the RV, but of continued importance in the epics] as great river. I think it would be better to drop direct quotation of Kazanas here. Already because we have to fix his reference, and because we could not say that he 'points out' a fact; he alleges several things, he implies that book 8 is just as young as 1 and 10 (not true without qualification), and he implies that there are several late verses extolling Sarasvati as great (not true; there is one single verse, and two others that refer to Sarasvati as just geographically as a river without special reverence). Thank you for your collaboration on this one, I think the article is making good progress now. dab (ᛏ) 07:48, 2 May 2006 (UTC)
 Minor point on RV 10.17
RV 10.17.7 says: The pious call Sarasvati, they worship Sarasvati while sacrifice proceedeth. The pious called Sarasvati aforetime. Sarasvati send bliss to him who giveth.
Together with Kazanas description of this hymn as a praise in the present tense (see above), it seems that the invocations in 10.17 adresses Sarasvati as a goddess of the forefathers and also of the present generation. (Kazanas seems to associate this verse also with the river, but the river or goddess identification may be disputed here.)--Rayfield 15:13, 3 May 2006 (UTC) of course. the point is that the hymn is rather emphatic about the antiquity of the goddess, which is of course seen as a sign of eminence also in the present time. dab (ᛏ) 15:34, 3 May 2006 (UTC)
 Mandala 10
Thank you too for your efforts on the RV articles. I have a question on Mandala 10: In the 1 and 10 of the Rigveda,...Only two of these references are unambiguously to the river, 10.64.9 calling for the aid of three "great rivers", Sindhu, Sarasvati and Sarayu, and the geographical Nadistuti list (10.75.5) discussed above. The others invoke Sarasvati as a goddess without direct connection to a specific river. Is there a reference for this? I think the wording is a bit too strict. In Scharfe's conservative listing of rivers (Hartmut Scharfe, Bartholomae's Law Revisited, 1996) he accepts the Sarasvati River (Sarsuti) identification in RV 10.17.7-9; 10.30.12; 10.64.9; 10.75.; 10.184.2. This is a very conservative listing, he says he "left out many references to Sarasvati, i.e. wherever there is likelihood that the word refers to the goddess Sarasvati, probably the deified river." And still he sees the River in 5 Mandala 10 hymns, not only in 2 hymns. (In Mandala 1 he only sees one hymn where he thinks Sarasvati is the River (RV 1.164.49), that would make 6 references to the River in RV 1 and 10; and in RV 2-9 he only sees 10 hymns where Sarasvati is the River). Maybe it should be reworded a bit.--Rayfield 22:03, 4 May 2006 (UTC) yes, this may need qualification; for example, it shouldn't sound as if Sarasvati was always unambiguously referred to as a River even in the early books. In my view, there is no strict line that could be drawn between the River and the anthropomorphic goddess, so that it is impossible to say "this refers to the River, that refers to the Goddess". Of course Sarasvati retains aspects of a River goddess even today. The point of this particular discussion is to look for "secular" references to Sarasvati as a river, such as "on the banks of Sarasvati", "Sarasvati lies between this and that River" or "Sarasvati flows to the sea". To invite Sarasvati to "sit on the grass" (10.17) refers clearly to the anthropomorphic aspect. 10.30 invokes Sarasvati with "the waters" in general, clearly in her role as a River goddess, no argument there, just as is to say that Indra drinking Soma is "refreshed by Sarasvati". I don't see how 10.184.2 can be taken to refer to a river literally; here, Sarasvati is just invoked as a fertility goddess, together with and in the same terms as Sinivali, who never was a river goddess.
Sarasvati is a very special case among the Rigvedic rivers, since it is the only one that became detached from the river itself and grew into an independent (and major) Hindu goddess. I would certainly agree that she never entirely ceased to be the "deified river", so that all references are to the river, in a way, even if not all describe her as an actual river. We should still make the difference between references in a "river context" and others in a "fertility" or "wisdom" context. 10.30 is in an "aquatic" context, I agree, so surely it can be taken to refer to the river, but as likely as not already to the "invisible", mystical river. I am sure we will find a satisfactory wording here; after all, there are only 72 references to Sarasvati, and this article could easily discuss them all. dab (ᛏ) 07:43, 5 May 2006 (UTC) especially in some hymns of the late books 1 and 10, the goddess Sarasvati (the later Hindu goddess of knowledge) is becoming abstracted from the river. Is there a reference for this statement, and can we make this conclusion based on the RV? Sarasvati can probably also be interpreted as goddess in several RV 2-9 hymns (e.g. 2.1.11; 2.30.8; 3.54.13; 5.5.8; 5.46.2; 6.49.7; 6.50.12; 7.9.5; 7.35.11; 7.39.5; 7.40.3 etc.). --Rayfield 21:12, 5 May 2006 (UTC) yes, you are right, as I say above, I agree this should be modified. dab (ᛏ) 22:13, 5 May 2006 (UTC)
can a similar map be made for this page like this one used on dutch wiki or this one on french wiki.nids(♂) 09:18, 6 December 2006 (UTC) it can. If you do, correct the spelling errors and source it to a reliable publication. I imagine the source for these images is  (it would be so much easier if people could name their sources up front). dab () 12:10, 6 December 2006 (UTC)
 Sarasvati or Saraswati
I changed most instances of the form "Saraswati" to "Sarasvati" in the text. I only did this for consistency with the article's current title. I did try to keep "Saraswati" in direct quotes and references to the goddess Saraswati, whose page is spelled with the W, I hope I didn't miss any. I don't know which should be preferred, but if it's "-wati", the page needs to be moved via requested moves.--Cúchullain t/c 19:19, 12 March 2007 (UTC) You can keep -wati or -vati. This type of problem arises many times during writing Indic words in English alphabets. I prefer -wati. WIN 04:44, 13 March 2007 (UTC) Yes, but the use within the article should accord with the article title. And since the article is currently at "Sarasvati", that's it needs to be spelled in the article. I'm
changing it for the second time now. If -wati is to be preferred, the page will have to be moved as I said above.--Cúchullain t/c 06:10, 13 March 2007 (UTC) we shouldn't distinguish between the spelling of the name of the goddess and the river. It's the same name. "Sarasvati" is just the more 'scholarly' spelling. 'Saraswati' is acceptable, but we shouldn't mix spellings. In this article, we should keep '-vati' throughout. dab () 07:14, 13 March 2007 (UTC) I agree. To be technical, the "w" should rarely be used, if ever in any Indo-Aryan word, considering that it never is pronounced as one. A similar problem occurs with Diwali, which is really pronounced as Dee-va-lee. GizzaChat © 10:12, 13 March 2007 (UTC) I agree that the river and goddess should have the same spelling, but I don't know enought to have an opinion on which it should be. If you think it's -vati, suggest a move at the goddess' page. This really needs to be sorted out.--Cúchullain t/c 21:35, 13 March 2007 (UTC) " Sarasvati is just the more 'scholarly' spelling ". What's something `scholarly' in English spelling for a pure Indic word ? Is it more scholarly that English script have scriptual problem than Devanagari script of India ? Is it `more scholarly' that English script reads different despite writing in similar manner ? e.g. put and but. Devanagari script will not have such problems. So,stop honouring your flaws as something `more scholarly'. WIN 11:50, 13 March 2007 (UTC) WIN, I'll discuss "scholarly spelling" with you once you manage to compose your plain English edits in correct orthography ans syntax. You might also want to read up the relevant Wikipedia articles instead of inquiring on talkpages. Or, you can always try WP:RD/L: Wikipedia isn't just the encyclopedia that "anyone can edit", it is also the encyclopedia that anyone can read, isn't that great? You could profit immensely. There are also different language editons? Why not treat yourself to a much improved editing experience in a Wikipedia project where you are actually fluent? dab () 12:55, 13 March 2007 (UTC) You are just diverting the topic. Write first about above `scholarly' spelling. It's your nature to denigrate opposition. WIN 04:50, 14 March 2007 (UTC) kindly consult Sanskrit#Consonants (s̪ɐrɐsβɐtiː?). If you don't understand it, ask at ̪ ̞ ̪ WP:RD/L. dab () 10:49, 14 March 2007 (UTC) In India, -wati is prefered than -vati. It's like telling that Yog is wrong and Yoga is right. For an Indic word, western world can have different way of writing or pronouncing, but that should not be portrayed as "more scholarly", as told by Dab. If western people can not pronounce some indic word properly then it's a matter of pronounciation ( & hence comes writing ) differences. Dab's portryal of his POV as only correct is wrong and shows his habit of denigrating others. WIN 06:33, 28 March 2007 (UTC)
"In India". Nobody is saying -wati is wrong, but -vati is prefered in western countries and thus is the used spelling on Wikipedia. Chopper Dave 07:14, 28 March 2007 (UTC) WIN, please don't accuse Dab of pov-pushing just because you disagree with him. False accusations just annoy people and don't progress the discussion any further. To both WIN and Chopper Dave, Wikipedia is governed by the Neutral Point of View policy so that no biases can be seen from the neutral eye. Both of your arguments, of which one is saying that -wati should be used because it is Indian and the other that -vati should be used because it is Western (they are both huge generalisations btw) are fairly weak. A substantial proportion, but not a majority of the English-speaking people in the world is Indian so region or spelling should not be favoured on those accounts. Dab's reasoning behind the -vati spelling being more "scholarly" is that all the prominent Indic (Romanised) transliteration schemes use v instead of w (and rightly so, it's no pronounced like a w). You may not realise the difference in pronunciation between the v and w if English isn't your native language but if it is, you would realise that the Indo-Aryan and Dravidian languages don't have a "w" in the way it is pronounced in English. And why on earth do you believe a different spelling suggest a certain POV? In this case, the "POV-pushers" aren't saying any derogatory about the Saraswati River. Lets kindly move on from this hindrance and develop the article further. GizzaChat © 07:41, 28 March 2007 (UTC) Great, thanks for the information. Chopper Dave 08:11, 28 March 2007 (UTC) Regarding tranliteration methods, the practice for articles containing Indic text is to use IAST which has no "w" at all. The Devanagari character व् is transliterated as "v" in IAST. The reason for using the IAST method of tranliteration is that it is the academic standard for tranliteration of the Devanagari writing system, not any political motive. Buddhipriya 20:59, 29 March 2007 (UTC) I have already told that I don't have problem of using -vati or -wati in my first answer. I was objecting Dab using " more `scholarly' ". So, no issues hence forth. WIN 09:44, 30 March 2007 (UTC)
 Deletion of ref. sentences by Dab & Rudra
Dab , you are deleting well ref. points. You are telling it as "confused additions" (sic). I know that you are confused to see above ref. sentences as it is against your understandings. Stop deleting them again. Instead write your confusions here. WIN 04:44, 13 March 2007 (UTC) your edits weren't even grammatical. don't expect people to clean after you. dab () 07:11, 13 March 2007 (UTC) Dab, you are adopting the same malign practice which you had adopted when I had introduced B.B. Lal papers as external links in IAM or OIT. My additions are straight from Kazanas papers whose mothertongue is English ! WIN 11:28, 13 March 2007 (UTC)
this isn't malign at all, I'm just protecting articles from substandard additions. It is not my fault if your edits are substandard throughout. You could consider picking a subject area where you are competent. You suffer from a fundamental misunderstanding of what Wikipedia is, and have not profited to clear this up over many months. Wikipedians are not here to educate you, to correct your English, or to clean up after you. If your additions are no good, usually they won't remain. dab () 12:59, 13 March 2007 (UTC) It's your resposibility to state what's `subordinate' ? I know that anything which is against your POV is `subordinate'. That way you are telling Kazanas, G. Possehl and P.H. Francfort as `subordiante' ! State who has stated this. Otherwise it's your pure tactic of POV pushing. Witzel's view of dravidians in Punjab in mid-Rigvedic period is not `subordinate' as per you , even though it's pure speculation. Then also his words are protected in WP article of IAM. Then, what your linguists who portray opposition as `subordinate' , were doing for last 150 years. BMAC settlements were burned and IVC towns were not burned. Then also Invasion of IVC was favoured by linguists for many decades. It's your pure pseudoism clearly evident here. WIN 05:51, 14 March 2007 (UTC) your additions are substandard, not subordinate. It is your edits, not your sources, I called substandard: they are in broken English, in orthographical disarray, and without any merit in terms of content. Some of your sources could well be cited, by somebody who understands them and can compose a paragraph in coherent English. You start rambling about "samudra" in the intro, in the middle of a discussion of "saras". Are you really that confused? "samudra" is taken from a single verse in RV 7.95, it's not like the term was in any way associated with Sarasvati, as you would make us believe. The term may mean "ocean", "sea", or "soma vat" in the Rigveda. We discuss this at samudra. dab () 10:32, 14 March 2007 (UTC) Dab, I am adding G. Possehl and P.H. Francfort again which you deleted. I am warning you that it's your resposibity to mention ref. additions which is agianst G. Possehl and P.H. Francfort.And, not delete them. Mention of samudra during article introduction was added to counter previous mis-guiding additions which stated that Saraswati name came from saras meaning pool or lake. So, it's utterly in bad faith to yell about adding samundra & Saraswati related Kazanas' words. By the way you know that Kazanas' mothertongue is English and my additions were taken straight from Kazanas article. So,do you mean that Kazanas' is `substandard' and `without any merit in terms of content' ? Stop your allegations. Instead go and write a book about your denigrating views or publish on some website. Remember that I will not allow your misrepresentations or deletions of my/others well ref. sentences in this subject. WIN 04:53, 15 March 2007 (UTC) I'm sorry if you don't like it, but "Sarasvati" does come from saras "pool". It's in the name. "Samudra" otoh is just a term that happens to occur in one of the several hundred verses on the Sarasvati in the Rigveda. If you're going to try and
present Kazanas as a source on equal footing with Mayrhofer, you are just making (even more of) a fool of yourself, and still haven't understood (or even bothered to read) WP:UNDUE and Wikipedia:Fringe theories. You should not talk of "misrepresentation" if your entire "knowledge" on the matter stems from online ideological pamphlets, while you don't recognize an academic source if it is shoved in your face. Go and edit some blog, but stop pestering Wikipedia with your naive nonsense. dab () 10:17, 15 March 2007 (UTC) As per you Hindu Indians and their ancient etymological understanding of Saraswati is wrong and recent Western linguist's etymology is right !!! And, G. Possehl and P.H. Francfort should be crackpots as you write in your denigrating style ! It's not naive nonsense. Stop accusing all scholarly oppositions. WIN 06:54, 16 March 2007 (UTC) what "ancient understanding"? The IVC was discovered in the 1920s, and the etymology of both Sarasvati and Samudra are undisputed. dab () 11:28, 16 March 2007 (UTC) There you are wrong.IVC might have been discovered in 1920 but Hindu legends of Saraswati river are not from 20th century ! "etymology of both Sarasvati and Samudra are undisputed" - but that is as per Western linguists who have never accounted Indian view and formulated speculative Aryan Invasion Theory ! I am again reverting your deletion.WIN 04:53, 17 March 2007 (UTC) you are working based on flawed dichotomies (Aryan Invasion, Western linguists) and, of course, naive ideology impermeable to reason. I wish you joy with your worldview, but please stop pestering Wikipedia about it. dab () 15:50, 19 March 2007 (UTC) You should know that Hindus revere dried Saraswati river and not at all Indus river, which is still flowing. Nearly 66% of currently known IVC sites are from this dried river area. This is enough to show that even for IVC people this river, and not Indus (Sindhu), was of prime importance ( as also found in Rig-Veda ). So, it's not some `naive ideology'. Then, why many western scholars from different sciences are questioning / opposing IAM ? What's their `naive ideology' ? WIN 12:03, 21 March 2007 (UTC) what can I say, you don't listen, you don't learn, you keep adding confused and misspelled ramblings, you have nothing to say and make sure we all listen to you saying it. This is going nowhere, WIN, Wikipedia simply doesn't operate like this. dab () 12:53, 21 March 2007 (UTC)
Dab, don't delete the well ref. sentences again & again. This is against WP policy and I should be telling you that WP doesn't operate like this. For Indian topic, Indian view is deleted !!! And, writing this is called as ramblings !!! You are behaving like a Dictator and deleting Paleogeography section which is properly written & refered ( written by somebody else ). WIN 04:57, 22 March 2007 (UTC) your paragraph is offtopic and flawed. It presents the terms etymology as a matter of belief in either "out of India" or "Aryan invason". While the etymology is in fact clear and undisputed, and has nothing to do with such a dichotomy. Sarasvati may be notable to "out of India" literature, but that doesn't mean that "out of India" literature is notable to the topic of Sarasvati (this article). You are pushing fringe literature, annd misrepresenting serious literature which is of course against WP policy. Now stop it and try to learn something instead of wasting people's time. dab () 10:16, 22 March 2007 (UTC) Your portrayal of "Sanskrit, an indic language's ethymological understanding for Saraswati by Western linguists is more proper than Indians ! And, then telling Indian ethymology as painted with `Aryan Invasion' or OIT meaning " - is really laughable. You can not tell that " since western linguists have believed in this ethymology for last 150 years ( or since AIT ) then this ethymology is only correct. For western linguists this is `clear and undisputed' and hence your meaning is incorrect. And hence your meaning is based on OIT." That means Indian brahmins will have to learn afresh indic Saskrit from western linguists who are more `scholar' than native brahmins ? (!!!) Dab, this type of views are really pathetic. What happened to your `naive ideology' allegations ? Instead of answering my questions , you are just rambling here on WP. WIN 05:13, 23 March 2007 (UTC)
Sanskrit, an indic language's ethymological understanding for Saraswati by Western linguists is more proper than Indians ! And, then telling Indian ethymology as painted with `Aryan Invasion' or OIT meaning is really laughable. – WIN (talk • contribs) 23 March 2007
-- an excellent summary of many surreal encounters to be had on Wikipedia. I thank you for this gem and might quote it in the futur :oD dab () 11:25, 23 March 2007 (UTC)
Dab, you are twisting the meaning in a similar way by inventing a new Indigenous_Aryan_Theory. You are known to twist meaning ( if that's against your views ).WIN 04:39, 24 March 2007 (UTC)
Rudra, give your reasons of deletion for my well ref. points and section. You are deleting well ref. subject points without discussion. You don't have any valid reason and hence propogating your POV based version. WIN 04:40, 11 April 2007 (UTC)
 Sutlej Flowed to the Southwest to join Beas not Saraswati
Vipasa or beas was a much longer river until about a 1000 years ago, when Sutlej changed course abandoning its old channel in southwestern Punjab near Bathinda and took a westerly turn from east of Ludhiana towards Harike beyond there it now flows in the old channel of Beas down to Pakistan, there is a dried up channel from the old Beas river bed just to the west of Ferozepur as the Beas now joins Sutlej at Harike instead of taking a U-turn like bend from Kasur before coming back to the present Sutlej channel(old beas channel) south-west of ferozepur as it did about a millenium ago, people living downstream from the confluence of sutlej and beas still call the river Beas, even though Sutlej is clearly the larger river, also they call the dried up channel west of ferozepur near Kasur, sukka Beas(dried up Beas). Geologists have discovered that Beas joined Satluj west south-west of Abohar near Sulemanke and Hindumalkot before Sutlej changed its course towards Harike to meet Beas several hundered kilometers upstream. Saraswati was clearly Ghaggar as is clear from the enormous course of Ghaggar which is several kilometers wide even in the mountainous Shivalik belt which is very unsual for a small seasonal river, Sarawati has been wrongly identified by some vested interests as originating from adi badri in Yamunanagar district of Haryana. Kurukshetra is a mythical battlefield said to be hundered kilometers in area, it is true if we look at the present day drishdavati and ghaggar but not the present day Saraswati which was known as Sarsa(there is another river named sarsa near present day bilaspur/anadpur in Himachal/Punjab) until a few decades ago when swamis and politicians that are busy destroying the ancient heritage with their own hands with their theories. There was never a town named Kurukshetra, the town that is now called Kurukshetra is holy part of the city of Thanesar, where there existed several tirths or temples, the place was called Sthaneswar which is mentioned in several ancient Indian texts and was the site of one of the biggest temples that was destroyed by Mahmud of Ghazni, it was also the capital of Harsha and later on of the Hindu Shahis after they lost afghanistan and western punjab to Mahmud. After 1947 some people with the active abetment of the government of Punjab and later Haryana started calling the town kurukshetra which is very dishonest and an insult to Indian heritage as Kurukshetra was a vast battlefield between Saraswati and drishdavati and not a small town. Now the question of Saraswati/ghaggar/hakra having such a large channel right from the lower hills to the Rann of Kutch. Geologists have uncovered evidence of a large
earthquake in the region where Ghaggar originates, it is very close to the point where Giri a river that originates from himalayan galciers in himachal takes a sharp south-easterly turn after flowing westward much of its course. It then goes on to join Yamuna just before it enters the plains. This eathquke seems to have blocked the course of Saraswati between the glaciers and the present day source of Gahggar, so Giri could very well be the old channel and waters of Saraswati that flowed into present day ghaggar channel down to the plains. This is nothing new geologists and archeologists have known this for more than half a century now. So, yes Saraswati was a major river, and it is possible that it flowed all the way to the Rann of Kutch via the Nara channel in Sindh as ghaggar/hakra flowed west and then southwest before turining south to flow into the present day Nara Channel. It should also be noted that the entire dried up river bed of Hakra/Nara lies in Pakistan briefly touching the Bulge of indo-pak border west of Jaisalmer and didnot re-enter the present day Rajasthan after leavig Ganganagar district as some of these people are suggesting. Some have even gone to the extent of bringing it down to Bikaner and Jaisalmer itself, when the river bed is clearly to the north and west. The Nara channel continued on to the west of Dholavira(indus valley site) in Gujarat and finally entering Kutch and the sea. March 24, 2007 Also, Sthaneswar/thanesar which is now called kurukhsetra is one of the 51 shaktipeeths as Sati's(Wife of Lord Siva) ankle fell there, 'Sthanu' is the manifestation of Shiva that has been worshipped at Sthaneshwar since time immemorial. The huge temple/tirth that was destroyed by Mahmud contained the shrine dedicated to this manifestation.
I have protected the page till you guys resolve your dispute. Please do not edit-war. Aksi_great (talk) 08:20, 13 April 2007 (UTC) it is up to WIN to sketch possible compromise variants of the version he wants to impose. If he refuses, block him for disruptive stubborn slow edit-warring. If anyone can be bothered to collect WIN's activities over the past months, it may be time to take this to the arbcom. I won't do this because it would mean hours of work, and my time isn't free. dab () 08:44, 13 April 2007 (UTC) For more details about Sarasvati river's ancient cources read http://www.hindunet.org/saraswati/kach/rannofkutch1.html which contains detailed maps and findings of archeologists. AND IT'S NOT MY WRITTEN VERSION. Infact it's Dab who is trying to push his POV based version by deleting well ref. points and misguide readers. WIN 13:32, 13 April 2007 (UTC) giving us a hindunet.org link to a giant page full of the most diverse sources and claims goes nowhere towards defending the particular change touting the clouded interpretation of Kazanas and friends you have been pushing for weeks now. I am sure this page has a lot of information we might incorporate. This would require a
competent editor sifting through it. Probably not you. dab () 14:47, 13 April 2007 (UTC) Ouch. It looks like a classic Kalyanaraman page: a magpie's nest of snippets, quotes, maps and whatnot, dementedly "formatted" into unreadability. Yes, there's good stuff in there, but don't even start without a bottle of Aspirin handy. rudra 22:12, 15 April 2007 (UTC) The above given hindunet.org link is just one more ref. Whatever ref.are provided in the changes are well ref. points. You have a grudge for Kazanas & is evident from your failed tactics to redirect Nicholas Kazanas to Out of India theory article. And,telling Kazanas' interpretation as clouded also shows clear hatred for him. And, this is pure POV. And, pushing your POV on WP is not allowed. Palaeogeography section is not written by me. But I strongly oppose it's deletion as it's well written with ref. Even above sited link will provide scope of some more additions in that section.Your deletion warring clearly shows that you even don't want to keep this well written sub-section, as it gives those details which are against the very version you want to push on WP. Now I am again telling you that pushing POV is against WP policy. You are not providing any scholarly discussion on this talk page for point of objections, as even you know that you can not find one in it.I know that you want to prove hypothetical Indo Aryan Invasion / Migration theory as something fact. And, hence you are opposing this additions as it's showing facts which are against your POV. And, pushing POV is against WP policy. WIN 05:31, 14 April 2007 (UTC) Kazanas and his theories are not notable WIN. I'm sorry, that's how it is, nothing to do with me or my views. In so many months, you haven't allowed that simple fact impress on your consciousness. Your edits are simply not helpful. Please try to find some editor who is either intelligent or has some basic education in the field argue your points for you. dab () 10:25, 26 April 2007 (UTC) Kazanas is not sole person objecting hypothetical AIT. You have told that hindunet.org 's above mentioned link has a lot of information that can be included. But, now I am seeing that it's external link is being deleted ! The hypocrate virtue is evident from such deletions. And, MISGUIDE readers is your mantra. WIN 11:40, 4 May 2007 (UTC)
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