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Jantar Mantar

jN] mN]
Magic or Science?
Yantra - Tantra - Mantra
Yantra yN] Machine, Instrument, Tool

Mantra mN] Formula

Tantra tN] Technique

Founders of Science in
Ancient India
Dr Nawal K Prinja
The Great Rishis
✦ Rishi means ‘SEER’: The discoverer
✦ Hindu Rishis were
– philosophers
– mathematicians
– scientists
✦ They made fundamental discoveries
✦ All reported in the great Vedic literature
The Puzzle
✦ Books are written by ✦ Aryans - not a race. It
civilised people means ‘noble people’
✦ Civilisations existed at ✦ River Saraswati
banks of rivers
✦ Where is your river? ✦ Now extinct but its path
has been traced by
satellite photography

✦ Aryan must have come ✦ Myth of Aryan invasion

from outside India has been smashed
Sage Atharvan: Discoverer of Fire
✦ Rishi of Atharva Veda
✦ 4000 BC or even earlier
“The sage Atharvan extracted the
agni(fire)” - Rig VI-16-13
Greek mythology
“The priests churn for agni as
says that Prometheus
was done by Atharvan” - Rig X-21-5 stole fire from
Prometheus = Pra + Mantha
In Sanskrit ‘by’ ‘Churning’
Medhatithi : Designer of Bricks
✦ Bricks (ishtaka) made to construct Yajna Kunds
✦ Formulae for laying down of bricks-Yajur Veda (XIII)
There are specific names of many mechanical processes
and implements in the Vedas
✦ Grinding, pounding, filtering, preserving
✦ Wheel, axle, hook, spade, boiler, pressing stone, mixing
bowl, fuel, pitcher with 100 holes, weaving shuttle,
drum, measuring tape
Dirghatama: The First
✦ Realised the importance of having an era
✦ Time determined by astronomical phenomenon
✦ Vedic sages defined
– Lunar year 354 days
– Solar (Tropical) year 365 1/4 days
– Civil year 360 days
(21 days added
every 4th year)
Dimensions of Yuga
“With the consonants they fill the nights, with the
vowels the days” - Aitareya Aranyaka
Verse Type Syllables No. of Verses Total
Brhati 36 12000 432000
Pankti 40 10800 432000
Kali yuga = 432000 syllables = 432000 years
Dwapara yuga = 2 x Kaliyuga = 864000 years
Tretaa yuga = 3 x Kaliyuga = 1296000 years
Sata yuga = 4 x Kaliyuga = 1728000 years
Total = Chaturyugi = 10 x kaliyuga = 4320000 years

One divine day = 1000 Chaturyugi = 4320 million years

Divine Day = Creation Divine Night = Dissolution

One God - 3 Metaphorical Forms
✦ Kala Purusha (Time) - Omniscient
✦ Veda Purusha (Knowledge) - Omnipresent
✦ Yajna Purusha (Action) - Omnipotent
– Rig Veda X.90 and I.164

The Supreme Purusha on chariot with two yokes and 7 horses

Horses or sons = cycles of time = Kala, muhurta, dina, ardhamasa,
masa, rtu(season), caturmasa(quarter year)
2 Yokes = Solictice Uttarayana (summer) Dakshinayana (winter)
Discovery of Planets
‘Star’ and ‘aster’ come from Sanskrit ‘Str’
“He has studded the sky with constellations”
- Rig Veda I-68.5
✦ Vamadeva identifies Jupiter (Brhaspati)
– Rig IV-50.4
✦ Vena Bhargava identifies Venus
– Rig X-123.1
First Medicinal Plant Symposium
✦ Date : 700 BC (2700 years ago)
✦ Venue : Regions of Himalayas
✦ Proceedings : Charaka Samhita
✦ Organiser : Rishi Bhardvaja

“He taught the science of causes, symptoms

and medication- the tripartite science”
-Charaka Samhita I-24
Symposium on Man and Disease:
The Question

“What is the source of

the man and the
disease? Do both come
from the same source?

King Vamaka of Kashi

Pariksi Maudgalya
“Man is born of the
Spirit, likewise all
diseases are born of
the Spirit. The
Spirit is the source
of all”
Sage Saraloma

“No. The Spirit dislikes

pain. It would never on
its own accord yoke itself
to painful diseases. The
real cause is the mind
when its engrossed by
passion and ignorance”
“Mind by itself can’t
cause any thing.
Without a body, there
cannot be any
disease, not even the
mind. All life started
from water. Water is
the cause of all
“Every thing does not depend on water. I am
aware of air-borne diseases. Man is the
result of the 5 physical elements and
Sage Shaunaka
“How can you have the 5 elements and the
consciousness without a creator or a father
and mother? Therefore, parents are the
origin of both, the individual and the
“No. Blind are not born
of the blind. And you
cannot tell who the first
parents were. Creatures
are born of the merits
of action and from the
actions arise the
Rishi Bharadwaja
“I disagree. The doer always proceeds the
deed. Nature alone is the cause. Roughness
of the earth, fluidity of water, mobility of
air and heat of fire.”
“Effort or lack of
effort is not
determined by the
course of nature.
Brahmaa, the
Creator of the
universe, is the
source of all”
“No. Brahmaa cannot give pain to his own
children. Evolution has taken place over
time. So time is the cause of creation of
Man and disease.”
Punarvasu’s Decision
“Truth is hard to find by taking
sides in a debate.
“The wholesome combination of
the physical elements gives rise
to the well being of Man.
Unwholesome combination leads
to disease”
✦ Balanced elements = At ease with each other
✦ Unbalanced elements = not at ease = dis +
ease = disease

Now known as the Ayur Veda

Susruta: Father of Surgery
✦ 125 surgical instruments made from steel
✦ 14 varieties of bandages
✦ “Nil by Mouth” for abdominal operations
✦ Use of antiseptics (mustard, nimba leaves etc)
✦ Training of surgeons on dead animals and watermelon
✦ Classified surgical operations into 8 kinds
– extraction,excising,incising,probing,scarifying,
suturing,puncturing and evacuating fluid
Types of Operations
✦ Plastic and ✦ Fractures and
Rhinoplastic dislocations
✦ Transplanting skin ✦ Removal of
flaps Haemorrhoids
✦ Cataract crouching ✦ Caesarean
✦ Hernia

Alexendra’s invasion brought it to Greece

and then to rest of the Europe
Atreya Punarvasu: First Teacher
of Systematic Medicine
✦ ‘Charaka Samhita’ about 700 BC
✦ Noted for the symposia on:
– Influences of Vata
– Origin of man and disease
– Taste and its enumeration
– Growth of foetal limbs
– Use of the emetic nut and dose of the anema
Origin of Medical Terminology
Modern Science Origin in Sanskrit
Dentistry Teeth Dant dNt
Osteopathy Bones Asthi aiS@|
Geriatrics Old Age Jeern jIR-
Chiropody Feet Charn cR-
Dermatology Skin Churm cRm
Kanada: First Expounder of Law
of Causation and Atomic Theory
✦ Ten books known as ‘Vaisesika Darshana’
✦ About 1900 years old
✦ First to explore the relation between ‘Cause
and Effect’
✦ Identified atoms (Parmanu) as the build
blocks of matter
✦ Defined chemical action (Paka)
Great Mathematicians
✦ Medhatithi- Extended numerals to billions
✦ Aryabhata- laid foundations of Algebra
✦ Lagadha - Rationalised Astronomy
✦ Baudhayana - The first great Geometer
Science of Geometry
✦ ‘Sulbha Sutras’ - Sulb means to measure
✦ Bodhyana’s sutras are 2800 years old
✦ Used in the construction of altars for yajna
✦ Discovered the Pythagorus theorem before
✦ Formula to draw a circle with same area of
a square
✦ Computed square root of 2 = 1.414213
Pythagorus Theorem
“The diagonal of a rectangle produces area
which its length and breadth produce
separately” - BS I-I-48

a c

a2 + b2 = c2
Transfer a Square into a Circle
“If you wish to circle a square,
draw half its diagonal about
its centre towards the North-
East line; then describe a
circle together with the one- W
third of that which lies
outside the square” - BS I-I-
Square Root of 2
“Increase the measure by its third part, and
again by the fourth part less by the thirty-
fourth part of itself” - BS I-61-2

D = a + a/3 + a/(3x4) - a/(3x4x34)

√ 2 = 1 + 1/3 + 1/(3x4) - 1/(3x4x34) = 1.4142

Vedic Mathematics
The ‘Parisista’ (appendix section) of the
Atharva Veda contains 16 ‘Sutras’
(formulae) that turn difficult Mathematics
into simple and fun calculations.

The material is mostly based on ‘Vedic Mathematics’

by Sri Bharati Krishna Tirthaji of Govardan Pitha, we
are grateful to him for revealing the cryptic mysteries
of the Sutras.
Nikhilam Multiplication

99 × 89

1) Write the base (100)

99 01 2) Find the first complement

11 3) And the second complement

5) Finally, cross subtract 88 11 4) Multiply the complements

The answer is 8811

✦ Many branches of modern science
originated in India (Bharat)
✦ There is not much awareness about this rich
heritage of India
✦ Knowledge of Sanskrit is essential to
discover our own riches
Good News
✦ You can learn Sanskrit by correspondence
✦ 4 stages of 10 lessons each leading to a
✦ From Bharatiya Vidya Bhavan Manchester
The End
Thank you and Namaskar