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by Ranajit Pal

Original articles for research students

It ain't what you don't know that gets you into trouble.
It's what you know for sure that just ain't so.
- Mark Twain

The Lost Palace of Palibothra and Alexander The Great In A Wider

The Blunder of Sir William Jones World
Sir William Jones was an eighteenth The Jonesian bag of lies related to
century Jurist and Orientalist whose Palibothra has sullied world history. Even
founding of the the Asiatic Society of after more than two millennia, the
Bengal in 1784 (with Charles Wilkins) was spectacle of the party of the Greeks and
a landmark in Oriental studies. Jones, the Macedonians streaming out of Europe and
chief justice at the Calcutta Supreme risking their lives across continents and
Court, was a prolific linguist and and seas to mingle with the exotic peoples of
studied the ancient Indian Law books in Africa and Asia appears stupefying.
Sanskrit. His translation of the drama Alexander was aware of his unique role in
Shakuntala of history and had expert writers in his train
to chronicle his mission yet there is little
in his history that is beyond doubt. This is
partly due to the misinformation campaign
launched by his generals and false
Jonesian geography which has misled

Kalidasa created a worldwide stir and

highlighted the literary heritage of ancient
India. Jones also observed that Sanskrit
was related to classical Greek and Latin
and held that they were linked to Gothic,
Celtic and Persian. He is famous for the
observation that Sandrocottus of the
Greek writers was Chandragupta.
However, Jones' idea that Patna in
eastern India was Pataliputra which was
Megasthenes' Palibothra was in fact a fatal
error that has no archaeological support.
Throwing caution to the wind and ignoring
the basic tenets of archaeology, Martin
Carver and Dilip Chakrabarti coolly affirm
that Jones' idea is proved beyond doubt
by reports of the Chinese travellers. It is
preposterous to consider the Chinese
reports as valid sources for Mauryan
history as they were written nearly a
thousand years later. Like Chakrabarti
or Carver, Jones had no idea that there
was an India within modern Iran. Great Once Jones' idea is rejected,
scholars like Sir Aurel Stein and Sir Palibothra becomes a city in Karman-
Charles Eliot were aware that Eastern Baluchistan where Alexander came. This is
Iran was Ancient India. stated only by Justin and is usually not
Appian wrote that the Indian king taken seriously, yet it calls for a complete
Androcottos dwelt near the Indus. If one re-assessment of Alexander's history. In
ignores Jones' idea, it turns out that the changed geographical scenario,
Moeris of Pattala was Chandragupta Moeris, Orontobates and Sashigupta all
Maurya who was being chased by appear to be the names of Chandragupta
Alexander through Gedrosia. After the Maurya who was initially an ally but later
arduous campaign he rejoiced his 'victory turned against him. Andragoras,
over the Indians' near Kohnouj. Mithridates, Orontes, and Diodotus of
Incidentally this was near Patali Erythrae were also names of Moeris. From
(28°19'58" La., 57°52'16" Lo.) near Jiroft Diodorus' report it turns out that Tiridates
which must have been Pataliputra, the who handed over the Persian treasury at
capital of Orontobates/Chandragupta. Persepolis was also Sashigupta. This
Jiroft, or more exactly Djiroft, was shows that Alexander did consider
Dvaravati, capital of Kamboja. Nearby chicanery to be a valid instrument of war
city-names like Kohnouj, Konarak, Multan and diplomacy.
etc. show that this was the India of yore. There is a strong likelihood that Ada
Patali is an ancient city dating to the II, daughter of Pixodarus, whom
fourth millennium B.C., and excavations Alexander once wanted to marry, became
here may yield the remains of the famed Orontobates' wife. Thus Alexander must
Royal Palace of Palibothra and relics of have known Orontobates before the
Alexander the Great. expedition. It is very likely that
Sashigupta joined hands with the generals
to poison the king. Dr. Rani Iyer of
Pullman, USA, suggests that Sashigupta
was the son of the Satrap Mazaeus.
The great Hellenic scholar Sir William
Tarn wrote that Alexander had given a call
for Brotherhood of Man at the Banquet at
Opis but this has been disputed by E.
Badian and others who relied solely on the
Greco-Roman reports and were unaware
that Alexander sat on a throne that was
once adorned by Gomata who was the
Patali near Jiroft was Pataliputra, capital of same as Gotama Buddha. This adds a new
Chandragupta/Orontobates dimension to his call for amity which is the
central plank of Buddhism.
Herodotus' report (Herodotus, I, 125) Regrettably, the Harvard professor
shows that some of the tribes under Cyrus also failed to notice the very significant
were actually Indians, fact that the Opis Banquet was was held
in the month of Mitra and probably on the
"The rest of the Persian tribes are the day of Mitra when the traditional feast of
following: the Panthialaeans, the Mitra is held. It is common knowledge
Derusiaeans, the Germanians, who are that an important motto of the Mitraists
engaged in husbandry, the Daans, the was Brotherhood. Alexander's call for
Mardians, the Dropicans and the Sagartians Homonoia was later followed up by Asoka
". who was the same as Diodotus-I.
The paucity of direct archaeological
The Derusiaeans were related to the proof of Alexander's expedition has
Druhyus and the Panthialaeans are the disturbed many scholars. Great
Panchalas of a later era. The Sagartians archaeologists like Sir Mortimer Wheeler
seem to be descendants of the people of were baffled by the absence of any trace
King Sagara who were linked to Sogar in of the 12 grand altars he had set up to
the Persian Gulf (Beth Hindoye) area commemorate his arrival in India.
which was 'India'. The Dropicans echo However, a careful study shows that at
Drupada. The Daans remind one of least some of these pillars were re-
Gotama Buddha whose name, according inscribed by Ashoka.
to Al-beruni, was Buddho-dana. Moreover, it can seen that the Indian
Jones was unaware that many sage Calanus (Sphines of Plutarch) was
famous ancient cities in modern India had actually Aspines or Asvaghosa.
older counterparts in south -east Iran Alexander's association with this great
which was once a part of greater India. philosopher and playwright invalidates the
Although his work effectively crippled imputations of E. Badian and P. Green
Indology by banishing great figures like that he was some kind of a conquistador.
Chandragupta, Rama and Manu from Again, due to Jones' error it has been
Indian history proper, it became very overlooked that the locale of the famous
popular in India as it brought Palibothra Sanskrit drama Mudra-rakshasa was not
near the Imperial capital Calcutta. Patna but the North-west where Alexander
However, a high price had to be paid for had come. It appears that Chandanadasa
the boon. Chronology became a bane of of the drama is a ghost of Alexander. The
Indology. Despite a century of research respectful treatment of Chandanadasa in
and two London conferences the date of the drama shows that Alexander was very
Kanishka still remains indeterminate. different from the the villain he has been
Emboldened by Jones' false idea, R. L. painted as by Badian and Green. The fact
Basham and R. Thapar of SOAS, London, that the mother of Darius III courted
have gone so far as to portray the great death by refusing food after hearing about
Rama as a minor tribal king bloated up by Alexander's death and that the Prasiians
poetic fancy. Gotama came down to the 5- treated his altars with great respect shows
4th century BC and Kalidasa, who used to that Badian was wrong.
be dated to the 2nd century BC, has been Alexander's call for Homonoia
labelled as a Gupta age poet. Even the (Samanvaya in Sanskrit) was echoed by
Bhagavad Gita, ascribed to the 2nd Moeris' grandson Diodotus-I, and had a
century B.C. by many scholars including J. momentous impact on history. The
L. Brockington, has been dragged to the politician-historian J. G. Droysen wrote
Gupta age. with insight that during the Hellenistic era
Jones had a high regard for Indian Greek and Eastern cultures mingled in the
culture and his mistake was inadvertent, lands conquered by Alexander to form the
but there were others in the colonial cultural milieu which became the crucible
administration who aided a thug, Dr. A. of Christianity. If almost no words are
Führer who moved pillars and other relics commensurate for the description
to locate Gotama Buddha's birth-place in Diodotus-I/Asoka, the same is true of
Nepal by producing fake inscriptions. The Alexander the Great who swept away all,
great Buddhist scholar B. M. Barua as it were. His impact on the civilizations
refused to recognize the Chandragupta of of both the East and the West is immense.
Patna and Vincent Smith strongly Ignoring the vast Indian literature and
protested against Führer's fraud. Dilip adopting an overly Europeanist view,
Chakrabarti, author of a book on the writers like E. Badian and A. B. Bosworth
history of Indian Archaeology, focusses on have failed to grasp why he was called
some lapses of the colonial era but 'Great' even by the Romans, centuries
refrains from highlighting the atrocious later. Despite some lapses, Tarn, who had
frauds in Nepalese archaeology. a better understanding of the East,
However, once the heap of Jonesian appears to be closer to the truth.
and Führerian rubbish, accumulated over
the centuries, is cleared, a renascent Alexander's Dream of a United Nations
Non-Jonesian Indology emerges that
exposes grave flaws in the mammoth
Discovery of Alexander's Missing Altar
Encyclopedia Iranica which attempts to Alexander's Mission and World Peace
delineate Iranian history using only the Alexander the Great in a Sanskrit
Greco-Roman and Persian documents in
deference to the crucial Sanskrit and Pali
sources. No sane discourse on world Sashigupta and the Poisoning of
history can ignore the priceless data Alexander
contained in the Indian texts. Jones' Alexander’s Relics at Barygaza and His
blunder and Führer's skullduggery have
seriously distorted world history.
Crossing of the Ganges

Colonial Indology and the Blunder of

Sir William Jones

Asoka, Diodotus-I and the Hellenistic Rostam, Rama and Achaemenian

Miracle Origins
The chaos in world history caused by Persian history without Rostam, the
Jones' Palibothra is immeasurable. After greatest hero of the Iranian tradition, is
Asoka was hijacked to the dank surrounds sadly incomplete. Similarly the Jonesian
of Patna, it became nearly impossible to vision of Rama being a tribal king bloated
reconstruct his history. Sir Mortimer up by poetic fancy, turns Indian history
Wheeler, one of the finest minds on into a carica-ture. Another gross
ancient India, failed to pinpoint Jones' miscarriage is that while the gre-atness of
mistake, but gave important clues Hammu-rabi is recognized, the true
regarding Asoka. He noted the stature of his contemporary Rim-Sin is
unmistakable Achaemenian imprint on his unknown. Scanty data often falsifies
architecture and wrote that he could have history - that Iran had no Bronze Age
been a half-Greek. Yet no one could culture was a fond cliché disproved by the
imagine that this half-Greek was the Indo- accidental discoveries at Jiroft. Yet a
Greek king Diodotus-I, known to all greater danger is that of misreading of
classics scholars for his matchless coins. history due to a false preconceptions.
Historians have been deluded by the Even though learned scholars like Sir
figure of thundering Zeus on these coins Charles Eliot, Arnold Toynbee and
which illustrates the vigour of Diodotus' Sukumar Sen held that India and Persia
youth but have failed to comprehend his are deceptive labels, this has been lost on
multi-faceted personality. Sadly, the modern writers. As South-east Iran was
crucial implication of the absence of his 'India' and part of India was under the
inscriptions and other relics has been Achaemenids, it is natural to expect an
overlooked. overlap between the Indian and Iranian
By which name was Asoka known in traditions. The true Heritage of Persia
the west? From the fact that the Greco- cannot be grasped without the Heritage of
Roman writers do not refer to Asoka or 'India'.
Piyadassi, R. Thapar readily assumes that Commonsense dictates that Naqsh-i
he was unknown in the West. This is Rostam (carvings of Rostam) is a memory
ridiculous, they must have used a of Rostam but he is placed in the Arsacid
different name. The most frequent name era by all. As this was the traditional
in the Edicts is Devanampiya, not Asoka. burial place of the Achaemenids, it is
As 'Nam' and 'Dat' both mean 'law', natural to suspect that Rostam could have
Devanam (piya) is the same as Devadatta been their ancestor. The suspicion is
or Diodotus. Thapar is hopelessly wrong, further reinforced by an unknown pre-
Asoka (Diodotus) was very well known in Achaemenid relief found here which was
the Greco-Roman world. effaced in the Sasanid era. The very fact
Again, the bilingual Kandahar Edict that it was copied from an earlier relief at
shows Asoka as the master of Arachosia Kurangun (~18th cent.
while the coins point to Diodotus as the
ruler. In fact Asoka's history matches that
of Diodotus-I line by line. The studies on
the Bactrian Aramaic texts by S. Shaked
miss the finer points of Bactrian history.

B.C.) hints that the name Naqsh-i Rostam

may be due to this relief. Thus it is very
likely that the horned king is a depiction
of Rostam.
The Achaemenian inscriptions do not
Significantly, just as Diodotus has mention Rostam, instead they mention
only coins but no inscriptions, his Arya-Ram-Ana (7th cent. B.C.) whose
contemporary and neighbour Asoka has name echoes Rama, the greatest hero of
only inscriptions but no coins. This clearly ancient India whose history is strikingly
indicates that Asoka and Diodotus similar to that of Rostam. Rama's life
complement each other. H. P. Ray's story, the Ramayana, is akin to a scripture
satisfaction about Asoka's coins is bizarre. for many Indians. J. L. Brockington writes
Asoka never refers to his neighbour that it was the greatest Epic of the world
Diodotus because he was Diodotus which influenced a large part of humanity
himself. It is very likely that the Asokan from Indo-Iran to Japan. That Indian
Pillar which was brought to Delhi from archaeology has failed to
Punjab was in fact a re-inscribed altar of
Asoka seems to have died when
Diodotus died. R. Thapar notes that his
Edicts abruptly stopped appearing by
about 245 BC but owing to visions
centered on Patna, fails to notice that this
is exactly the year of Diodotus' death.
Both were fierce warriors in their youth
but later became saviors, sôtêr. Pliny
indicated three Kalingas of which one
must have been near Parthia. Konark in
the Persian Gulf also shows that Asoka's
Kalinga war had nothing to with modern
Orissa but is linked to the strifes linked to
Diodotus and the Parni.
It can be seen that Mauryan history
is linked to that of the Arsacids. According
to Strabo (xi,1-12) the Parthians were a
tribe of the Parni or Aparni who belonged
to the larger tribe of the Dahae. The name
Parthian is related to that of Parthava, the
first Iranian region conquered by them.
They are identified with the Pallavas in the
Indian texts but non-classical sources
usually describe them as Arsacids after
the name of their founder Arsaces or
Assak who, according to some classical
authors, was a Bactrian like Diodotus. As
Gotama is said to have been related to the
Nandas, the Mauryas also appears to be
related to the Achaemenians. Sir Mortimer
Wheeler repeatedly stressed the link of
the Asokan pillars with Achaemenid art.
Also the Arsacid claim of descent from the
Achaemenians, which is discounted by
R.N. Frye and others, is in fact true. unearth Rama's relics from UP is because
The name Assak is clearly linked to Rama's India was a wider world that
Asoka and gives a different derivation of extended up to Elam. Jonesian writers like
the name Asoka (or Ashoka) from that R. Thapar and A.L. Basham have held that
based on the Sanskrit 'shoka' or 'grief'. Rama was a minor tribal hero of UP which
The Arsacids were also called Arshakuni is absurd. Contrarily, Sukumar Sen wrote
which shows the clear link with the with rare insight that Rama, also called
Shakas. M. Witzel and H. Falk consider the Rama Margaveya, was from what is now
Shakas to be 'foreigners' in India but as Iran (Margu). Rama of Margu is clearly an
Cynthia Talbot notes, this is improper. The older namesake of Arya-Ram-ana.
Arsacids claimed to be linked to the Kurangun is near the ancient site of
Achaemenids who were also Shakas. This Sih-talu which provides the link with the
is indicated by names such as Indian texts. This must have been Sutala,
Dar(a)shaka in the Indian texts. capital of Vali, a famous figure of the
Gaumata's abode was Sikayavatish which Ramayana. In Sumerian history also Valih
also shows the link with the Sakyas. It is is a great figure. The king and his wife in
likely that Chandragupta was also known the relief can thus be Rama and his wife
by the same name Arsaces or Assak. Sita. Rama was an Ikshaku king which
Ashkh of the Shahnama appears to be corresponds to the term Uksha-man (Bull-
Chandragupta. man) or Achaemenian. Shutruk-Na-
In the Minor Rock Edict I Asoka hhunte is an younger namesake of
describes his dominion as Jambudvipa Shatrughna, Rama's half-brother. Shimut
which is uncritically assumed to be Wartash may be Warad-Sin or Bharata,
modern India. In the version of the edict another brother. The name of Tan
found at Nittur in Tumkur district of Rukurater (~2004 B.C.) echoes Raghu,
Karnataka, Asoka calls himself a ruler of Rama's ancestor, and Dasa Ratha. Lukh-
Pathavi which is Parthia, Diodotus' Ishshan (~2350 B.C.) may have been an
domain. K. P. Jawasawal noted that ancestor of Lakshmana, Rama's brother.
Jambudvipa was a wider territory covering Historians like R. N. Frye are totally
nearly the whole of civilized Asia. The unaware of the crucial significance of
name Jambu or Gambu may be linked to Rama even though Persian history
names like Sisygambis, mother of Darius- resounds with his name.
III. 1) Rama and Vayu are venerated in the
Asoka calls himself 'Piyadassi laja Avesta.
magadhe' which is uncritically thought to 2) Arya-Ram-ana was an early ancestor
allude to Magadh in Bihar. Like early of Darius-I.
Kalinga, Vanga (Bengal), early Magadha 3) Ram-Behist was an ancestor of the
was also in the North-West. Magan in Sasanids.
south east Iran was the early Magadha. 4) Ramannuya (PF1855) was close to
The Mauryan homeland is given in some Darius-I.
sources as Pippali (vana) which may be 5) Many Sasanian city-names had the
Babil in Seistan. Babyl(on) in Iraq later prefix 'Rama'.
became known as Babil which may be a 6) Shutruk-Na-hhunte echoes
transform of Kapilavastu. Names like Shatrughna.
Kabul and Vasht echo Kapilavastu which The study of the Persepolis tablets has
was the greatest religious centre of the yielded much information about important
ancient world. The Mauryas are linked to figures like Darius and Parnaka yet crucial
the Nandas who in turn are linked to the data remains unknown due to improper
Buddhist Sakyas. Babil in Seistan also prognosis. Even a meticulous scholar like
may have been the Baveru of the Jatakas. Hallock failed to note the echo of Rama in
Asoka is said to have been the founder of the name Ramanuya. The name of the
Sanchi which is likely but is not backed by Mitannian king Tushratta echoes
hard evidence. Dasharatha, Rama's father. Chedor
It is far more logical to associate La'omer of Genesis 14 corresponds to
Asoka with Kanganhalli in Karnataka Kudur Laghumar of the Babylonian texts
where his inscribed portraits have been and Raghupati was Rama's name.
found. Kanganhalli (Halli = City) echoes Rama's presence in the Indus cities is
the name of Bandar-e Kangan near unattested although the frequent symbol
Konarak in the Gulf area which was once of the bow-man in the seals may, in fact,
India proper. As the Mudrarakshasa stand for Rama. Post-Islamic Iran also
shows, Moeris, the grandfather of ignores him although his name may be
Diodotus-I was Orontobates and according hidden in the many Ram-names like
to Arrian Orontobates (misspelled Ramadan, Ram-allah etc.
Ocondobates) who fought against Fortunately, the Sumerian texts
Alexander the Great was from the Gulf provide priceless data about Rama. The
area. Sumerian king-lists show that Rama was
the same as Ram-Sin of Larsa (~18th
cent. B.C.) who ruled Sumer, Elam, and
the Indus cities. Although Ram-Sin was
deified and his memorial has been found
at Ur, his relics are unknown from Elam,
said to be his homeland. Rim-Sin (also
called Ram-Sin) was the longest ruling
monarch (60 years) of Sumer and his
reign is termed the golden era of Sumer
by the great Assyriologist C. J. Gadd.
Significantly, Ram-Sin is called an Elamite
in the Sumerian texts.
Khotanese literature, which is almost
Bandar-e Kangan was near Patali
exclusively Buddhist, describes Rama as a
Buddhist hero. Imagining the Buddhists to
Bandar-e Kangan was near Konarak be from Nepal and Rama from Ayodhya in
and about 10-days boat journey from U. P., the eminent linguist Sir Harold
Kanganhalli. Another Bandar-e Kangan Bailey discounted the Buddhist claim that
was near Gour (Firuzabad) and Katak in Rama was one of their own. A careful
Iran. Kangan or Gangan may be linked to study, however, shows this suspicion to
the Gangaridae mentioned by the Greeks. be misplaced.
Diodotus' father Bindusara, who can be The Buddhist sources trace the
identified with Bagadates is linked to genealogy to the primeval Maha Sammata
Gauda in some texts which may be Gour
in modern Iran or Istakhr (Asthagoura of (Maha=great) which agrees with Shem,
Ptolemy?). 'Khwarra' and 'Goura' meant father of Elam in the Old Testament. This
'bright' or 'shinning'. Bagadates is known shows the basic unity of the Indian,
to have been a priest-king from Istakhr. Elamite and the Judaic traditions. Even if
The Kalinga war had a great effect on Rama is relatively unknown, the names of
Diodotus and after it he became a his half-brothers Shatrughna and Bharata
changed man and adopted Buddhism. In are radiant ones in Elamite history.
the 13th edict, after declaring that he had The Buddhists traced their genealogy
himself found pleasure rather in conquests to Okkaka, said to be an ancestor of both
by Dhamma than in conquests by the the Sakyas and the Kollians. Okkaka is a
sword, Diodotus/ Asoka says that he had transform of Ukshaka which is the same
already made such conquests in the as Ukshaman or Achaemenian. According
realms of the kings of Syria, Egypt, to Buddhaghosa, there were three
Macedonia, Epirus, and Kyrene, among dynasties with Okkaka at the head of
the Cholas and Pandyas in South India, in each, all of whom were lineal descendants
Ceylon and among a number of peoples of the primeval king Maha Sammata or
dwelling in the borders of his empire. This Great Sammata. This may correspond to
was a great event in the history of the three wives of Dasharatha. Bardiya
Hellenistic civilization and led to, as Asoka and Cyrus may have been the offsprings
saw it, the Kingdom of God. of Bharata (Warad-Sin), brother of Rama.
Toynbee noted that Cyrus (Kurash) may
Everywhere men conform to the instructions have been linked to the Indian Kurus. The
of the King as regards the Dhamma; and Achaemen-ids seem to be linked to
even where the kings emissaries go not, Gotama as his relative Bhaddia is clearly
there when they have heard of the King’s Bardiya. Gaumata of the famous Behistun
Dhamma, the folk conform themselves, and record can be seen to be Gotama and
will conform themselves to the duties of the both Darius-I and Gaumata were known
Dhamma ….. as Sphendadates. Part of the Rama
Story is submerged in the Rostam Saga.
In his celebrated History of Hellenism Like Rama in India, the greatest Iranian
J.G. Droysen made the far-reaching hero was Rostam, immortalized in the
observation that in the Helleni-stic era Shahnama, about whose history little is
Greek and Near Eastern cultures mingled known. There are traces of the Rama
in the lands conquered by Alexander the story in the Rostam saga which may have
Great to form the cultural matrix from been emended by Surena, who defeated
which Christianity emerged. If Alexander the Romans in the crucial battle at
was the harbinger of this Hellenistic Carrhae and displaced Rama as the
miracle , Diodotus was its greatest mightiest Iranian hero. His personal name
champion. Tarn wrote that most of the is not known but his link with Rama is
Bactrian Greeks became Buddhists. This written in the name of Ram Sahristan, his
was due to Alexander and Diodotus-I, due capital in Seistan. Just as in the Rostam-
to whom momentous events took place in Sohrab story, Rama's sons fought with
the Orient that altered human destiny. him, unaware that he was their father.
Much has been written about The late Babylonian texts indicate
Hellenistic culture that fails to recognize that another name of Rama was Rostam.
Asoka's determinant role in it. S. M. Rostam's early name was Rotastahm
Burstein rightly emphasizes the which echoes the names Dasharatha and
interaction of Greeks and non-Greeks Dharma (Durma-Ilani) of Rama's father.
during the Hellenistic period in outposts Naqs-i Rostam can also be read as Naqs-i
such as Ptolemaic Egypt and Heraclea on Rama. Rama may have been the ruler of
the Black Sea but other great centres of the Indus cities, Iran and Iraq. He was
Hellenistic culture were Sanchi, also an ancestor of Gotama Buddha and
Besanagar, Amaravati and the Achaemenian kings. I. M. Diakonoff
Nagarjunakonda. and D. McAlpin have pointed to a link of
The Hellenistic upsurge ultimately Elamite with Dravidian but the links
paved the way for the rise of Christianity between Elamite and Indian civilization
and Islam. J. Z. Smith writes in the
Encyclopedia Britannica (1979), also extend to history. Although Rama is
usually thought to be an Aryan, he was
Finally, the central religious literature of both called Elamite and in Indian art he is
traditions – the Jewish Talmud (an usually painted in Blue, whereas his
authoritative compendium of law, lore, and brother Lakshmana and wife Sita are
interpretation), the New Testament, and the shown as light-skinned.
later patristic literature of the Early Church
Fathers – are characteristic Hellenistic
documents both in form and content. Ram-Sin of Larsa was the Historical
Only misjudgment of historians has Rama
denied Diodotus his rightful place in world Rama and Rostam

A Coin-Portrait of Asoka or Diodotus-

Discovery of Alexander's Missing Altar

Gotama Buddha and the Nepalese Shiva Min(uksha) and Mahakala in

Bluff in World History the Seals
Truth, in the ultimate analysis, is at The Indus civilization, which should
times stranger than fiction. As Gotama have been the very starting point in
was abandoned in the wilderness of the Indian history, resembles, alas, a butterfly
Nepalese Terai by the thug Führer, his life pinned in a glass case - standing apart
history went to pieces. He was a prince, from all later tradition or society. The
but that he was related to the royal principal elements of this highly articulate
Achaemenid house of Darius-I, defeats all culture can be seen through the corridors
imagination. Although fanciful textual of archaeology, the eternal yogi in
tales abound in the literature, the eminent meditation, the majestic priest-king in
Belgian scholar E. Conze writes with trefoil-stud-ded robe, the enchanting
circumspection, dancing girl, the splendid seals, the
magnificent metropolises and so on, but
To the modern historian, Buddhism is a all the characters are muted and frozen.
phenomenon which must exasperate him at Little is known about their political, ethnic,
every point and we can only say in linguistic, or religious affiliations. From no
extenuation that this religion was not civilization of antiquity is there such a
founded for the benefit of the historians. Not deafening silence.
only is there an almost complete absence of This is the appalling legacy of Jones.
hard facts about its history in India; not only Once the crucial state of Magadha was
is the date, authorship and geographical
ejected to the distant east, nothing could
provenance of the overwhelming majority of
be made out of the writing of this largest
the documents almost entirely unknown,
...... civilization of antiquity. Fortunately, after
carefully purging the Jonesian traits,
significant progress can be made towards
Vincent Smith was aware of the
the decipherment of the seals.
heinous forgeries of Führer and rejected
Kapilavastu in Nepal but oblivious of
1. Firstly it has to be realized that Magan in Baluchistan-
Führer, the Buddhist scholar E. Lamotte
Seistan was the
declared, without sufficient warrant, that early Magadha.
if miracles are sieved out from Buddhist 2. The mature Vedic culture may date from the latter half
legend, only a travesty remains. The of the second
American archaeologist D. B. Spooner also
ignored Nepal and wrote in 1915 that millennium B.C. but the Indus seals display
Gotama and Chandragupta were from unmistakable Vedic traits.
Iran. He was branded as an upstart by the 3 The language of the seals seems to be a mixture of
Jonesian lobby and textual hearsay primitive Sanskrit
continued to be paraded as sober history. and Dravidian.
About Buddhism in Iran, R. E. Emmerick, 4 The Indus script was read from right to left like early
a principal contributor to the Encyclopedia
5 Lastly Brahmi has to be recognized as an offshoot of
Iranica, writes,
Indus writing.
How far west Buddhism spread in Iran we
do not know. On the basis of archaeology it As scholars like S. N. Kramer and G.
seems possible to infer that it never F. Dales have noted, the Indus civilization
flourished west of the line joining Balkh to did not exist in isolation but was closely
Qandahar, the so-called Foucher line. The linked to the other contemporary Bronze
Russian discovery of a Buddhist stupa at Age cultures. Thus important data about
Gyaur Kala near Bairam ‘Ali more than four the seals can be gleaned from Sumer. Sir
hundred kilometers west of Balkh in the Max Mallowan wrote that the signs for
Merv oasis is hardly sufficient evidence to god, heaven, star , for water , for
induce us to consider that Buddhism was earth , for the heaven and the deep
ever very prominent further west. The
common adage often applied to the spread , had long been painted on the pottery
of Buddhism to the east is relevant to the of Mesopotamia, and Iran and were
west: one swallow does not make a invested with magical prophylactic
summer. meaning. Similar signs also appear in the
seals and probably had very similar
This obtuse assessment ignores connotations.
Hsuan Tsang's report that Lang kie (ka)-lo I. Mahadevan writes that the most
in Persia had more than 100 monasteries frequently used symbol was with an
and more than 6000 brethren. Where did incidence of 1395. From the great
Mani find the Buddhists? Balkh,suggests importance of the bull-cult in the Indus
Emmerick, but it may also have been cities, it is natural to expect the sign to be
southeast Iran which was 'India'. A strong linked to the bull and this exactly turns
refutation of Emmerick comes from Al- out to be the case. The similar looking
beruni, the greatest scholar of the world
of his day Sumerian sign stood for the bull. More
significantly, an almost identical symbol
In former times, Khurasan, Persis, Irak, was used at at Tell Halaf in 3000 B.C. for
Mosul, the country up to the frontier of Syria, the bull (Mallowan, The Dawn of
was Buddhistic, but then Zara-thustra went Civilization, p. 89).
forth from Adharbaijan and preached
Magism in Balkh (Baktra). His doctrine came
into favour with king Gushtasp, and his son
Isfendiyad spread the new faith both in East
and West, both by force and by treaties. He
founded fire-temples through his whole
Empire, from the frontiers of China to those
of the Greek Empire. The succeeding kings Thus the sign can be read as 'Uksha'
made their religion (i.e. Zoroastrianism) the which echoes the English word Ox. This
obligatory state-religion for Persis and Irak. later became the Brahmi 'Sa' and
In conseq-uence the Buddhists were perhaps also the Latin U.
banished from these countries, and had to
emigrate to the countries east of Balkh.

This crucial data confirms the presence

of Buddhists in Iran in the 6th century BC
beyond any doubt and calls for drastic
reform in Iranian history. A precious clue
is offered by Xerexes. In a trilingual
inscription, he boasts over his destruction
of the Daivas,

Among these countries (that submitted to

him) was (one) where previously daivas were
worshipped. Then, by the favour of Ahura
Mazda, I destroyed that daiva place, and I
had proclaimed, the daivas shall not be
worshipped. Where previously the daivas
were worshipped, there I worshipped Ahura
Mazda properly with the Law (arta).

The identification of the Daivas is a

serious problem in Persian history. R. N. in the head-dress of Proto-Shiva or Minuksha
Frye does not recognize the true Gaumata
yet writes with clear insight, One corollary of Jonesian Indology,
elucidated by R. Thapar and S. Ratnagar,
It is generally agreed that the daiva
is that there is no trace of Hinduism in
worshippers were not Babylonians or
Indus religion. The absurdity of the
Egyptians but rather Iranians, or at least
Aryans. One may ask whether the Indians contention is proved not only by the figure
living within the Achaemenid empire, who of the ithyphallic Shiva-like Yogi depicted
worshipped the old gods, may have been in some seals but also the inscription in
regarded as daiva worshippers. these seals which are of crucial religious
significance. The clear echoes of the fierce
Due to the Nepalese smokescreen, Rudra in Nimrod of the Old testament
no one follo-wed up Frye's cue. For shows that Indian history and religion has
syndicated art writers like T. Kawami and to be perceived from an international
Pratapaditya Pal, Buddhist art is solely perspective. The Yogi has been recognized
defined by its Indian idiom. Contrarily, Dr. as an early form of Shiva by many
Spooner wrote that Gotama was from Iran scholars and reminds one of the
(part of which was India). Niharranajan procreative power of God (Purusha)
Ray did not hide behind jargon and stated extolled in the RigVeda to be at the origin
categorically that Indian Buddhist art was of all things. The Yogi is a Lord of beasts
only Hellenistic Greco-Indian art of a later like Shiva Pashupati and is ithyphallic like
phase, Min, the Egyptian God of fertility and
harvest. Min was one of the most ancient
gods of Egypt whose cult dates from the
The fact remains therefore that we have no
examples extant of either sculpture or pre-dynastic period and was linked to
architecture that can definitely be labelled fecundity. He was the Lord of the Eastern
chronologically as pre-Mauryan or perhaps desert which seems to point to his eastern
even as pre-Asokan. origin. This is also indicated by his name
Amsu which is similar to the name of
Keen observers like M. Rostovtzeff Amsa, a Vedic Solar God said to belong to
noted Parthian influence on Buddhist Art the so-called 'Indo-European' period.
and D. Schlumberger, who succeeded Apart from their common ithyphallic
Foucher, boldly wrote that Greco-Buddhist nature, that the Proto-Shiva was also
art was the Indian descendant of Greco- called Min is evident from the inscription.
Iranian art. Sadly, modern scholars have
The fish-sign can be read as 'Min' as the
neither the taste nor vision for studying
word for 'fish' in Sanskrit, Dravidian and
Buddhist art of the 6th century B.C..
even Sumerian was 'Min' (munnu). Thus
Pratapaditya Pal rightly highlights the
glory of the Buddhist art of Alchi but has the last two signs can be read with
no clue regarding its strong Iranian certainty as Min-uksha.
features. Holding on to a creaky Nepalese Urban civilization ended abruptly in
perspective he tries in vain to read the the north and other areas and in the dark
mind of the Buddha, ages that followed, much of the history of
the glorious era was obliterated. The
The religion that created Alchi is so far name Minuksha is not known in Indian
removed from early Buddhism that if Buddha literature but it may have survived in
Sakyamuni himself were to visit the monastery Minakshi, the famous fish-eyed Goddess
today, he would be no less bewildered by its of Madurai which has quaint echoes. Her
iconographic complexity than the average name Minakshi may have been derived
visitor. from that of her husband Shiva Minuksha.
Min was known as Amsu and in India
T. Kawami ignores that though no Amsa was a solar-god. This shows the link
ancient Buddhist text is known from India of the Dravidian cultures with the Indus
or Nepal, 300 Buddhist palm-leaf cities. The ancestors of the Pallavas also
manuscripts have been found near Merv seem to have been Harappans.
and that Buddhism and Zoroastrianism The link of Shiva with Indus religion
were sister religions, seems to be indicated by the presence of

The site, a monastery & stupa, is dated 3-4th Mahakala, an allied god. The symbol
cent. and was remodeled and enlarged depicts a Ziggurat and can be read as
several times, the stupa simply being Maha or Mah, name of the Goddess. The
encased in a larger "shell" each time. There
sign stands for a city or citadel and
was large sculpture as a larger than life clay
can be read as Bala or Kala (Kella in
head of Buddha was found. Curiously, the
famous "Merv vase" painted with figural Bengali). D. Diringer writes that in early
scenes containing zoroastrian elements was Chinese writing the sign
excavated in the Buddhist ruins. designated a gate or Dvara. The 'Gate'
had a religious (and probably also
This was suggested by Sir Charles juridical) significance and the root Dvara
Eliot. To study Buddhist art of the 6th is the key to names like Maha Anga Dvara
century B.C. one has to venture to the (Mohenjo-daro), Darab, Dvaravati, Djiroft,
North-west. Fortunately it is in this Der, Dwaraka, Chanhu Daro, Sutkagen-
periphery of India - in Seistan and Dor and the Persian Gates.
Baluchistan - that Sir Aurel Stein, one of
the greatest antiquarians of all times, The important text
found a very ancient shrine at Kuh-e appears in a total of 27 inscriptions of
Khwaja which he labelled as Buddhist. He which a large number are in the form of
found nothing ancient in Nepal yet, due to copper tablets from Mohenjo-daro and
Führer, saw only Bodhisattvas and missed seems to be of great ritual significance. It
that this was the birthplace of Gotama can be read as Maha Kala Dvara Uksha
Buddha. This created a sensation but has which echoes Darius and shows the great
influence of Shiva Mahakala in the Indus
cities. The name strongly resembles
Mekal, the Canaanite God. Mekal was also
an ancient city in Palestine. The name
Mahakal may be linked to the place-name
Makkas mentioned in the Achaemenian
documents with Purash.

The sign before in the proto-shiva

seal may be a compound of and may

have been read as 'Ukshu' or just 'Shu'.

As the Brahmi 'Ma' was written as ,

the three signs preceding may

tentatively be read as Mashmasshu, the
name of an important class of Sumerian
been forgotten. Roman Ghirshman, a priests. The Mashmasshu may have been
noted Iranologist missed the full import of easterners. 'Nin' or 'Min' in Sumerian
Stein's discovery but wrote with unfailing meant 'great' which may echo the name
instinct that the murals of Kuh-e Khwaja of an early god. Were they Indo-Aryans?
are the precursors of Gandhara art, which As the links of the Indus Proto-Shiva
points to the great antiquity of the site. with Mekal and Min shows, Hinduism,
Nearby Dahan-e Gholaman is heedlessly which is a disparate mix of diverse
termed a 'slaves entrance' but to any doctrines, cults, and social traits, holds
discerning observer Gholaman is a clear the key to a meaningful study of world
echo of Gotama. Seistan is not only the religion. Owing to its composite structure,
home of all ancient Iranian tradition this ancient religion has been likened to
including the Shahnama, it is also the locale an armadillo by some scholars but T.
of the Lalitavistara. Kuh-e Khwaja was McEvilley (The Shape of Ancient Thought)
Kapilavastu or Babil. Herzfeld wrote about discusses it from a broader West Asian
Bawer, said to have been founded by the perspective.
legendary Jamshid, which is Babil.
Babil was the holiest religious centre of Shiva Minuksha and Mahakala in the
the ancient world. According to the Tarikh-i
Seistan, Ali, son-in-law of Prophet
Indus Seals
Mohammed, was buried in Seistan. E.
Herzfeld wrote that the Magi went to
Palestine from Kuh-e Khwaja. I. M.
Diakonoff held that the Prophet Zoroaster
was from Seistan. This is also stated by
Gnoli who, unfortunately, is hoodwinked by
Führer. Khwaja Moinuddin Chishti, founder
of the venerated Indian shrine of Ajmer
Sharif hailed from Seistan.
The history of Alexander the Great
shows that Kuh-e Khwaja in Seistan was
Alexandria Prophthasia, the abode of
Prophets. Deluded by Führer's misdeeds,
great scholars like Tarn and Herzfeld
missed the clear hint in the name
Alexandria Prophthasia. Herzfeld
mistakenly dated the stepped fire altar at
Kuh-e Khwaja to the first century B.C.
which is accepted by T. Kawami without
circumspection. Y. Yamamoto, on the
other hand, correctly identifies it as the
oldest surviving Zoroastrian altar.

This mural of Kuh-e Khwaja may be the earliest depiction

of Gotama's nativity
In art Gotama is often shown seated
on a lotus which also reveals his true
origin. Nelumbo nucifer (Nelumbonaceae)
or the Indian lotus is not native to modern
India but to wetlands of northern Iran.
From there it probably spread to Egypt,
India and further east. Persian history
provides crucial information about the
history of Buddhism.
A careful study shows that Gotama
was the same as Gaumata who hangs like
a ghost in Persian history. His tussle with
Darius-I as recorded in stone at Behistun
is one of the greatest stories and scandals
of history yet little is known about the
nature or cause of his revolt. P. Briant's
account of Gomata in the Encyclopedia
Iranica lacks insight but historians like
Toynbee and Olmstead suspected Darius’
veracity and concluded that Gaumata was
not an imposter. Although R. N. Frye fails
to notice the overlap with Indian history,
Gaumata was a namesake of Gotama.
Gut-ama in Sumerian means ‘one whose
mother is a cow’ which agrees with the
meaning of Gau-mata in Sanskrit and old
Persian. Gaumata was an immensely
popular figure. That Darius had lied is also
noted by Chester Starr, Dandamayev and
W. Culican. T. C. Young Jr. a noted expert
on Iran, also saw through the tirades of
Darius-I and came very near recognizing
the true nature of Gaumata who was also
a religious leader. He writes with rare

Finally, it should be remarked that Darius

hurls the epithet ‘Magian’, ‘priest’, at
Gaumata almost as though this were the
worst possible thing he could say about the
rebel in order to discredit his enemy and to
support his own cause in the eyes of his
followers, if not in those of the populace.

Young suggests with remarkable insight

that Gomata may have preached a new

He then tells us that, 'As before, so I made

the sanctuaries which Gaumata the Magian
destroyed.’ Clearly Darius and Gaumata had
a difference of opinion about sanctuaries,
and, therefore, we may assume about
religion or, at least, about ritual forms of
religious expression. The details of this
disagreement escapes us. Indeed, we are
not even sure who was the innovator; the
Achaemenians may have introduced forms of
religion which adherents of an older faith
reacted against under Gaumata’s leadership;
or the Magian could have been attempting to
introduce a new religion which offended the
establishment. What is critical in the present
context is that the story of Darius’ overthrow
of Gaumata probably contains evidence of a
religious as well as dynastic, social/economic
and political struggle.

This new religion propounded by Gomata

is Buddhism which proves beyond any
doubt that Gaumata was the true Gotama.
There are many other references to
Gotama in the Persian and Jewish sources
which have not been recognized. Tattenai
(6th-5th century BC) who was the Persian
governor of the province west of the
Euphrates River (eber nari, "beyond the
river") during the reign of Darius I was
Gotama, whose name was Tathagata. The
Book of Ezra (V: 3,6) states that he led an
investigation into the rebuilding of the
Temple in Jerusalem about 519 B.C. He
sent a report to Darius, who responded
with instructions to allow the work to
proceed. Tattenai is cited in a cuneiform
tablet of 502 B.C. A. Kuhrt of London
University refers to the 'good Iranian name'
of Bagapa the satrap of Babylon during
Darius' reign and even considers the link
with Tattanu but due to Jonesian delusions
is unaware that Tattenai and Bagapa could
be Gotama's names Tathagata and
Bhagava. The Book of Ezra also cites the
names Shether and Boznai which agree
with Gotama's names Shiddhartha and
Buddha. The name Shethar occurs in the
Book of Esther.
It can be seen that Prophet Abraham
was also from the abode of Gotama and
Zoroaster. The startling discoveries of Sir
Leonard Woolley at Ur in Sumer had such a
dazzling effect on scholars that it was not
realized that this could not be Ur Kasdim,
the home of Abraham. W. F. Albright
disagreed with Woolley but no one realized
that Ur of Abraham was Urva, one of the
sixteen good regions of the Avesta.
It is indeed uncanny that the
patently absurd notion of the rise of
Buddhism in Nepal has survived scholarly
scrutiny for nearly a century. Sir Aurel
Stein whose untiring efforts established
the material basis of Buddhism, found
nothing in Nepal. The vanishing of
Buddhism from India may be due to the
fact that after Afghanistan and Seistan
ceased to be parts of 'India', Buddhism
was seen as an extraneous creed. R. G.
Bhandarkar blamed the decline on the rise
of the Mahayana which weakened it from
within. It is significant that Mahayana,
from its very inception, was an essentially
'foreign' doctrine. The Mahayanists were
often hostile to the Bhakti cult and other
forms of Hinduism, yet the generally
tolerant approach of the Buddhists to
other faiths resulted in the assimilation of
Buddhism in a reformed Hinduism. In this
sense Buddhism did not disappear from

Gotama and Zoroaster in a Non-

Jonesian Frame

Terah, Eastern Judaism and

As Judaism is older than Abraham,
many Judaic traits may in fact be
continuations from the religion of his
ancestors. But where was his homeland? A
careful study shows that Abraham was
from Kapil or Babil in Seistan, which was an
abode of Prophets. Herzfeld was skeptical
about the local tradition of Kuh-e Khw-aja
that it was the abode of Ibrahim but this
may be true. His father Terah may have
been Yadus-Tera or Yudhisthira of the Epic
Mahabharata. Yudhisthira's cousin was the
great Yadu(Yadava) hero Krishna who may
have been an Eastern 'Jew'. His son
Yaudheya also appears to be a Yadu. After
the fateful Bharata war Yudhisthira started
a westward journey which may have been
continued by Abraham. The Yadus vanished
from Indian history after the Bharata war
(~1750 B.C.) which appears to be linked to
Abraham's westward journey. The early
Yahdus may have been from the Indus
Cities. The name Jaddua of the high-priest
at the time of the second temple echoes
Jadu. D. P. Mishra noted the uncanny
parallels between the Indian and the Judaic
traditions (Studies In The Proto-History of
India, p. 126).
The biblical authors were only dimly
aware of the socio-political background of
the Patriarchs. E. A. Speiser wrote that the
Patriarchal stories contain traditions and
social data that do not fit in with the later
times in which they were written down.
This can be seen from the confusion
regarding Shinar which is equated with
Sumer without proper warrant. In Gen. x.
10 the beginning of Nimrod's kingdom is
said to have been "Babel, and Erech, and
Accad, and Calneh, in the land of Shinar."
Two points are to be noted here. Firstly
Nimrod (Nim=great) of the Old Testament
is the divine archer Rudra of the RigVeda
which clearly suggests a location in Indo-
Iran. Secondly Babel need not be Babylon
but can be Kapil or Babil in Seistan. Shinar
is clearly the Sineru of the Buddhist texts.
In Gen. xi. 2, Shinar is the site of the tower
of Babel which has to be reconsidered in
view of the great discoveries in the Jiroft
Terah is said to have been an idol-
maker and a pagan but the Indian evidence
shows him as a righteous king
(Dharmaputra). Just as E. Badian ignored
the Pali and Sanskrit texts in Alexander's
history, modern scholars on Judaism like R.
J. Zwi Werblowsky, E. S. Gruen and S.
Shaked disregard the evidence of the
Mahabharata as Judaism, in their view, was
only a product of Egypt and Palestine. On
the other hand, the eminent Sanskritist
Nicholas Sutton notes the clear traits of
monotheism in the religious doctrines of
the Mahabharata which offers insights into
the religion of Terah.
Although a full-fledged meditative
tradition is absent in Rabbinic Judaism and
Krishna's tenets of love appear rather
dissonant in it, a different picture emerges
from the Jewish mystical tradition and
Kabbala. It uses mandalas, such as the
ten sefirot, to help explain reality. It has
even been conjectured that the star of
David originated as a Kabbalistic mandala.
Rather like a Buddhist teacher Maimonides
counsels on seeking internal peace and
personal enlightenment in the Mishneh
The central plank of Kabbala is the
startling doctrine of the deity. Sarvepalli
Radhakrishnan writes that many of its
features like the potency assigned to
letters, the use of charms and amulets,
the theory of emanation as opposed to
creation ex nihilio, the doc-trine of the
correspondence between the macrocosm
and microcosm, belief in rebirth and a
definite panth-eistic tendency, are alien to
the spirit of Rabbinic Judaism and akin to
that of the Indian Upanishads and
Tantrism. The roots of Tantrism go back to
the earliest phases of human civilization
and can be seen in 3rd millennium B.C.
Sumer. Werblowsky writes in The Concise
Encyclopedia of Living Faiths (p. 26),

Of course Kabbalah is not the same as Jewish

mysticism, of which it is merely one phase, though the
most important and far-reaching in its effects. In spite
of its name which means '[esoteric] tradition' and in
spite of the Kabbalist's sincere belief that they only
revived the old mystical teachings of Moses and and
earlier sages, there can be no reasonable doubt that
the system as such evolved in the thirteenth century in
Southern France and Spain.

This skepticism is shared by the majority

of Judaic scholars but is very short-
sighted. Werblowsky wonders in vain,

How must one explain the resurgence of myth in the

midst of what is usually considered to be the moral
enemy of mythical religion? By what channels or
mechanisms did mythical and Gnostic symbols
reassert themselves in medieval Jewry? What is the
relation of the old, Oriental Gnosticism and the almost
explosive reappearance of similar ideas ........ For our
present purpose we can ignore these questions .... .

The answer lies in the Eastern Judaism

of Terah. A. Edrei and D. Mendels have
written about the split between the eastern
and Western Diaspora but their Eastern
Jews are only from Babylonia and Russia.
Had they been aware of the crucial import
of the Indian tradition, writers like
Werblowsky and E. S. Gruen would not
have missed the link of the term Kabbala
with Kaivalya of the Jainas and Moksha of
the Hindus. Mani used a similar term
Significantly, Seistan was the home of
Gotama and also Abraham and Zoroaster.
The common origin of Gotama and
Abraham suggests that Buddhism is linked
with Judaism. Jerusalem, in fact, is less
ancient than Kuh-e Khwaja near ancient
Shahr-e Shokhta which was larger than
contemporary Ur in Sumer. It was called
Uri-Salem in the Amarna letters which
echoes the name Shilavati or Shilahatta of
the birth-place of Joshaphat or Gotama. It
can be recalled that many of the early
Indian texts were translated by learned
Jewish scholars.
It is stunning to realize that this
humanistic Eastern Judaism was the cradle
of Buddhism. Due to the Nepalese forgery it
has been missed by all that Sudda-Yauda-
Saramana cited in numerous Persepolis
tablets was not only an eastern Yahdu but
also the father of Siddhartha who is Sedda-
Saramana of the tablets (Sedda-arta).
Sedda-Saramana is the Sethar of the Book
of Ezra. The conflict between Orthodox
Jews and Eastern religion is evident from
the history of Nebuchadrezzar and the
clashes between Tattenai (Gotama) and the
Palestinian Jews. If Josephus' data that
Alexander the Great had prostrated before
the high priest Jaddua is true, he may have
known about a very different brand of
Daniel Dana

Bindusara Amitrodates or Sedda Saramana and Sudda-Yauda-

Mithradates Saramana
Being the father of the great
Diodotus-I, Bindusara is also of significant As authentic administrative records of
historical importance. Although writers of the ancient world, the clay tablets of
the London school like R. Thapar abandon Persepolis are without any peer in world
Bindusara in the gutter of history, there history. These were written between 509
are saner alternatives. If one rejects the and 494 B.C. and provide precious data
notion of a Mauryan capital at Patna and about Darius' family and others in the
turns instead to Punjab, Afghanistan and administration and shed light on the
beyond, the real Bindusara can be social, religious and economic aspects of
identified within the framework of a Non- Iran, India and Iraq. Yet, owing to a
Jonesian Indology. The great B. M. Barua stilted perspective, crucial data contained
saw no link of Chandragupta with Patna. in them
Bindusara (301 BC – 268 BC) is said
to have been a valiant warrior who greatly
expanded his dominion. He has also been
remembered for his love for Hellenic
culture - a trait which comes as a great
help in the search for the flesh-and-blood
Bindusara. The crucial information comes
from a study of his name Amitrochates
which seems to be an error for Amitradates
or Mitradates.
remains hidden. Mainly due to Jones'
blunder, though the presence of the
Indians was perceived, the fact that much
of modern Iran was 'India' was missed
and this led to severe flaws in the reading
of the tablets. The all-pervading Indo-
Iranian commonality implies that the Pali
Apart from Goura in the Laghman area of records, which were ignored, are perhaps
Afghanistan there was yet another Gaur in more important than the Sanskrit ones in
what is now Iran (Firuzabad) which was the interpretation of the tablets.
perhaps more important. Archaeologists One notable figure, apparently
have recently found an ancient missing in the tablets, is Zoroaster. This
observatory here (http://iran- can be due to the fact that he may have which is very died before 509 B.C. or alternatively, he
similar to those at Jaipur and Delhi. may be there in the tablets addressed by
Scholars usually trace the history of Gaur a different name. Though there is great
from the 3rd century AD but it may date uncertainty about his date, Herzfeld wrote
from an earlier epoch. Nearby Istakhr can that he was an adversary of Gaumata.
be Ptolemy’s Astagaura. According to Olmstead he was killed by
Turning now to history it can be seen Danae - she who judges Graves
that Chandragupta was a very powerful
ruler and his dominion was larger than
that of Seleucus with whom he clashed,
but was he an absolute monarch? His
identity with Andragoras seems to suggest
that, at least in the early years, he
acknowledged nominal Seleucid Gotama and Suddodhana in the
suzerainty. This was probably true also in Persepolis tablets
the case of his son Bindusara.
This brings one closer to Bagadates,
the first indigenous Seleucid satrap who
was a contemporary of Bindusara. “Dat” is
usually rendered as ‘Given’ but a better
alternative may be “Law”. Ashoka drops a
valuable clue in one of his Edicts that his
ancestors were also Devanampiyas or
Devadats (Deva = God = Baga).
The Mithraic cross in the standard in the

side of the coin of Bagadates reveals that

Bagadates was also Mithradates. As Mithra
in Iran was a god of War, this can also be
read as Amitraghata. Mary Boyce writes
that Baga also meant Mitra. Bindusara is
linked to Gauda in some texts which may
be Gour in the Fars area of modern Iran
which was once a part of greater Indo-
In the little polis of Amyzon in north-
west Caria a decree from the time of Philip
Arrhidaeus granted citizenship to a man
named Bagadates and his son Ariaramnes
and on the advice of the oracle at Delphi,
appointed the former as the priest of the
local goddess Artemis.

The Old Testament, a Sourcebook of Hammurabi As Seen From India

No sensible account of the ancient
The various problems in the middle-east can be written without
interpretation of Genesis-14 of the Old Hammurabi whose greatness can be
Testament are well known. The eminent gauged from many of his letters and other
biblical scholar S. H. Hooke termed this as relics that have been found by
the ‘erratic block’ in the Pentateuch. A archaeologists.
careful study of the Abraham Saga from a
Non-Jonesian perspective reveals not only
Hammu-rabi but also Rama (Kudur
Laghumar) as key figures of the era.

The location of Kapilavastu in Seistan

throws new light on the origin of
Zoroastrianism, Buddhism, Judaism and However, a judicious study shows that his
Christianity. E. Herzfeld wrote that the law-code was in existence before his reign
three Magi went from Kuh-e Khwaja. and he was just one among several able
Abraham's homeland appears to be Ur contemporaries such as Siwe-Palar-
Kashdim near Shahr-i Shokhta in Seistan Khuppak, (whom he addresses as the
which was a larger city than contemporary father), Rama (Ram-Sin) and Shamshi
Ur. This reveals new links between the Adad. He was not deified like Ram-Sin and
Indo-Iranians and Jews. The Yadus of the his treatment of his closest ally Zimri-Lim
early Indian texts appear to be related to does not reveal a regard for propriety or
the early Yahdus. The study seems to Law. Some of his love letters also reveal a
indicate that Shinar of the Old Testament full-blooded personality.
of the Bible was not Sumer but Seistan.
The land of Sineru mentioned in the
Buddhist texts may be Seistan. Sineru
may be the same as Shinar. The Buddhist
sources speak of the primeval king Maha
Sammata. This genealogical allusion
agrees with the Old Testament where the
Elamites are described as the offsprings of
'Elam, eldest son of Shem' and shows the
essential unity of the Indians, Elamites
and the Judaic people.

New Reflections on Genesis 14

Dawn of Religions in the Land of

Prophets Although Hammu-rabi's archaeological
imprint is far superior to that of others C.
J. Gadd writes that the materials for his
history 'are scanty in the extreme'. His
Palace remains unknown. The Bible places
him at Babil in Shinar which is usually
thought to be Babylon in Iraq but it may
be in Seistan. The Ramayana links him to
Lanka which may be near Bandar-e-

Hammu-ravi was The Ravana of


Parnaka, Uncle of Darius-I, was Hundred Names of Chandragupta

Purnavarman alias Amitrodana, Maurya
Uncle of Gotama
That no relic of the great
In Jonesian Indology the Mauryan king Chandragupta is known from Patna or
Purnavarman, cited by Hsuan Tsang, is anywhere else in the world shows the
only a minor distraction, but there is bankruptcy of Jonesian Indology. This has,
more. Śankarâchârya, the famous in fact, turned the great Mauryan into a
exponent of the Advaita Vedanta school of mythical figure. D. K. Chakrabarti of
philosophy, is known worldwide for his Cambridge University refers to many 2nd
erudition, yet his categorical remark, century B.C. texts from Mathura but is
silent on the absence of any inscription of
“There have been no world emperors Chandragupta from Patna or elsewhere. R.
(sārvabhauma) after Purnavarman.” Thapar, another expert on the Mauryas,
also evades the issue. The scenario is so
seems unfathomable. The epithet 'world bleak that F. R. Allchin drops
emperor' appears perplexing and the Chandragupta from his recent book on the
Âchârya excluded great emperors like archaeology of South Asia. Allchin
Asoka and Chandragupta although he proposes fresh excavations at Patna but
must have known about them. Did he judging from the experience of nearly a
consult a lost history written by the century, this is likely to be an exercise in
Kashmirian historian Kshemendra (similar futility. In fact barring Ashoka, no relic of
to the Rajatarangini) which is mentioned any Maurya or Nanda king is known.
by Taranatha? However, a careful analysis reveals
For more information one has to turn that the two Aramaic inscriptions found at
to the sixth century archives from Laghman, Afghanistan, which are
Persepolis. It is well known that Darius-I attributed to Ashoka, actually belong to
had conquered part of 'India' but who was Chandragupta. The inscriptions, which
the Satrap in-charge of India? A likely have been studied by Scholars like H.
candidate was Parnaka or Pharnaka, the Humbach, A. Dupont-Sommer and B.N.
treasurer and the highest officer in Mukherjee, mention Priyadarshi and, as
Darius-I's government who was also the such, have been attributed to Ashoka but
king's uncle. Many of the Persepolis this may be unwarranted. On shallow
tablets signed by him show that he was a linguistic grounds, Harry Falk makes the
resident of Arachosia which was called novel suggestion that the texts belong
White India. As his name resembles neither to Ashoka nor Chandragupta. As
Purnavarman it appears nearly certain H. C. Raychaudhuri stressed, the epithet
that he was the Satrap of India. Priyadarshi was used both by Asoka and
However, being the Satrap of India Chandragupta. D.C. Sircar also did not
hardly merits the title 'world-emperor' but agree that the inscriptions belong to
a closer study shows that Parnaka was Asoka. The injunction against the killing of
also the Satrap of the Pontic region. This creatures and fishes in the inscription has
There is great confusion in the literature been thought to be a characteristic of
regarding one Data-Mithra who was also a Ashoka but this is unjustified.
treasurer at Persepolis. Data-Mithra or Chandragupta is also said to have
Mithradata may be just another name of embraced Jainism in his later years.
Parnaka or Purnavarman. The clinching evidence is that Vakshu
M. Dandamayev writes that (Tarn, GBI, p.101 ) in the inscriptions is
Sphendadates was a nickname of clearly Oxyartes who was a contemporary
Gaumata (quoted by Ctesias) but is totally of Chandragupta, not Ashoka.
unaware of the interwoven Achaemenid That no coins of Chandragupta is
family tree. The learned Al-beruni wrote known does not concern writers like
that Isfendiyad, son of Gushtasp, drove Chakrabarti or Thapar. A judicious study
away the Buddhists from Iran. Al-beruni's shows that Andragoras was
data shows that Isfendiyad or Chandragupta. The coins of Andragoras
Sphendadata was also a name of Darius- have been dated to the fourth-century BC
I. by many scholars, and both Plutarch and
There is another link between the Appian use a similar name, Androcottus,
Achaemenids and the Buddhists - Rama. for Chandragupta. Tarn gave the crucial
Imagining the Buddhists to be from Nepal information that the Sun's quadriga of
and Rama from Ayodhya in U. P., the Andragoras' coins was also used by
eminent linguist Sir Harold Bailey Vakshu or Oxyartes. The Charioteer of the
discounted the Buddhist claim that Rama Sun God is Aruna in Sanskrit and thus the
was one of their own. A careful study, coin can be seen to belong to Arunadas or
however, shows this suspicion to be Orontes, another name of Andragoras.
misplaced. Incidentally, Darius-I also
claimed to be a descendant of Arya Ram-
ana, probably a descendant of Rama
(Ram-Sin), who was said to be an
'Elamite'. This seems to imply that the
Ikshaku dynasty was linked to the Uksha-
man (Achaemenid) dynasty. Okkaka, an
early ancestor of the Buddhists was
clearly a Uksha-king. Thus Gotama
appears to be linked to the Achaemenids. If it is recognized that Bindusara's
As the former were related to the Nandas, name Amitraghata is an error for
the Mauryas also appears to be related to Amitradata, Mauryan history takes a very
the Achemenians. The Arsacid claim of dramatic turn. It can be inferred that
descent from the Achaemenians is (A)Mitradata was also a name of his father
discounted by R.N. Frye but this is an Chandragupta who was a world figure like
oversight. At this stage it is profitable to Alexander the Great with whom his name
turn to a very learned authority. is often associated. Like Alexander the
Apart from the common name Great, Chandragupta could also have
Sphendadata, Gotama's relationship proclaimed, `Putroham Prthivyah' - 'I am
Darius can also be guessed from the fact a son of the earth'.
that Mithradata may may have been the Mithridates–II who, according to
same as Amitrodana, Gotama's uncle. Diodorus, rose to the throne of Pontus in
337 B.C. (Diod. xvi. 90.) appears to be
Chandragupta. Diodorus assigns him a
reign of thirty-five years(337-302 B.C.),
but it appears certain that he did not hold
uninterrupted possession of the
sovereignty during that period. The
circumstances that led to his absence
from Pontus are not known; indeed no
farther notice of
him is available from the date of his
accession in 337 B.C. until some time
after the death of Alexander (~322 B.C.),
when he is found attending the court and
camp of Antigonus. The date is important
as it is the date of accession of
Crucial information comes from a
very ancient Indian source, the Sanskrit
drama Mudrarakshasa. Curiously in many
manuscripts of the drama, Chandragupta
is absent but his role is taken up by
Rantivarma which suggests that it was
another name of the former. As `varma',
like `bates', is a title, Rantivarma can be
seen to be the same as Orontobates.
Diodorus (xix 46, 47) writes that
Orontobates was appointed the satrap of
Media by Antigonus. He soon after
successfully repulsed an attack by some
partisans of Eumenes and Peithon. Arrian
writes that Orontobates was present in
the army of Darius-III in the battle of
Gaugamela. From Diodorus we learn that
Mithridates-III, son of Mithridates-II
succeeded to the throne in 302 B.C. This
is Bindusara Amitrodata. Diodorus writes
that he added largely to the dominions
inherited from his father.

Comments from leading scholars

* "Dr. Pal departs largely from the

trodden path (i.e. the Jonesian Indology)
yet presents a cogent, well-documented

Prof. Sukumari Bhattacharji, noted

Indologist and author of "The Indian

* "There is no question of disagreeing

with you in any matter"
"Your personal knowledge of the terrain
makes your views especially valuable and Mr. I. Mahadevan, noted writer on the
I agree that Patna is too far east." (to be Indus script.
a Palibothra)

Prof. N. G. L. Hammond, editor of The

Cambridge Ancient History and discoverer of

* "I am both amazed and impressed by

your paper 'An Altar of Alexander Now
Standing near Delhi'. It is very * "It is good to know that scholars are
convincing (though I would like to see making use of them. Too often one feels
counter arguments) and has changed my as if one is working in a vacuum. Good
view of Alexander in India, of Ashoka, luck on your research".
and the Euthydemid dynasty".
Prof. Mark Garrison, Trinity University,
Prof. Thomas McEvilley, Rice an eminent authority on Persepolis Tablets
University, author of
"The Shape of Ancient

* "I finally got around to reading more of * "He has performed an incomparable
Dr. R. Pal's musings. They are, alas,
service in rectifying the western bias
quite flakey. Reading his paean to
that has always been preponderant in
Alexander's vision of world peace (yes,
studies of Alexander. No one now should
Alexander the Great - Aleksander
look at Alexander without also going to
Makedonskiy as he is known in modern
Pal and delving further into the Sanskrit
Uzbekistan) gave me a severe case of
sources and their allusions to
giggles. Don't waste bandwidth on him."
Dr. Trudy Kawami, Arthur M.
Dr. Jan-Mathieu Carbon, Corpus
Sackler Foundation,
Christi College,
a commentator on the art of Kuh-e
Oxford, in Scholia Reviews

* "I read your article with great * "I, personally, have been waiting
interest. That is the rich nature of impatiently to see what you have to say
Alexander as a scholarly topic; there is concerning Jesus Christ and Alexander."
always more to consider!"
Prof. John Scarborough, University of
Dr. Janet Grossman, The J. Paul Wisconsin
Getty Museum

* "Your piece in the Sunday Statesman

* "Your theses about Jonesian Indology on Ram is most interesting."
certainly look stimulating and Prof. T. C. Young Jr. Royal Ontario
Museum, Toronto, a noted expert on the
Prof. Ian Mabbett, Monash University. history and archaeology of Iran

* "Thank you for your letter and the * "Although I do not agree with your
enclosure which I have read. I regret to interpretations, I found them interesting
say that I cannot give you an opinion on reading. One of the few areas in which
its contents as I am neither a specialist India is supposed to have made
in linguistics nor in the ancient history of important contributions is religion, and
west Asia. I am sorry therefore that I now you are taking that glory away as
cannot be of help to you". well".
Prof. Romila Thapar, Jawaharlal Dr. Pratapaditya Pal, noted Art
Nehru University. commentator.

Related Sites
* Bryn Mawr Classical Review
* Dr. Führer's Astonishing Fraud in
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* 1stmuse * Knowledge * Trirat's blog * History
* L'Encyclopedie de L'Agora * Amazon
Reviews* Babylon *UNED *al-amin *
M. Lahanas
*Cais-Soas *Utrecht University*
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