Sunteți pe pagina 1din 53

DECIPHERINGDECIPHERING THETHE VEDICVEDIC SKYSKY

R.N.R.N. IYENGARIYENGAR RAJA RAMANNA FELLOW

JAIN GROUP OF INSTITUTIONS BANGALORE

(aareni@yahoo.com)

ARCAEOASTRONOMY SEMINAR OF TIFR BOMBAY UNIVERSITY CAMPUS; MUMBAI 10-11 FEBRUARY 2009

PREVIOUS EFFORTS

B.G. TILAK : ORION JACOBI: FROG HYMN (RV 7.103) STOCKWELL: Equinox Eclipse (20 Oct.3728 BC) S.B.DIKSHIT: General S.B.ROY: Intercalation R. SHAMASHASTRY: Eclipses P.C. SENGUPTA: Chronology H.A.SHAH: Vedic Gods (ABORI 1936) P.V.HOLAY: Nakshatriya Prajapati

MOTIVATIONMOTIVATION

MOTIVATION MOTIVATION WHAT WAS THE STATUS OF KNOWLEDGE OF ASTRONOMY BEFORE THE SIDDHANTIC PERIOD ? OUTSIDE

WHAT WAS THE STATUS OF KNOWLEDGE OF ASTRONOMY BEFORE THE SIDDHANTIC PERIOD ?

OUTSIDE VEDANGA JYOTISHA WHAT CAN BE GATHERED ABOUT THE IMPETUS PROVIDED BY THE RIG VEDA SAMHITA TO THE DEVELOPMENT OF ANCIENT ASTRONOMY?

THETHE MYSTICMYSTIC NUMBERNUMBER 33393339 OFOF THETHE RIGVEDARIGVEDA ISIS THETHE COUNTCOUNT OFOF TITHISTITHIS ININ THETHE DARKDARK FORTNIGHTSFORTNIGHTS BETWEENBETWEEN TWOTWO SIMILARSIMILAR LUNARLUNAR ECLIPSES:ECLIPSES: -

THE SO CALLED SAROS WRONGLY ATTRIBUTED TO THE CHALDEANS

(RN IYENAGR: IJHS, DECEMBER 2005) Claim Supported by Abhyankar, IJHS 2006. Also in his book on Presiddhantic Astronomy

K.D. Abhyankar
K.D. Abhyankar
K.D. Abhyankar
K.D. Abhyankar

Vrddha Garga (500 BC?)

lɤɧÉcÉ¢üqÉÉMüÉzÉålɤɧÉcÉ¢üqÉÉMüÉzÉå rÉjÉæuÉrÉjÉæuÉ
lɤɧÉcÉ¢üqÉÉMüÉzÉålɤɧÉcÉ¢üqÉÉMüÉzÉå rÉjÉæuÉrÉjÉæuÉ mÉËUuÉiÉïiÉåmÉËUuÉiÉïiÉå ||
MåüiÉÑcÉ¢ÇüMåüiÉÑcÉ¢Çü iÉjÉæuÉåSqÉÉMüÉzÉÉiÉçiÉjÉæuÉåSqÉÉMüÉzÉÉiÉç mÉËUuÉiÉïiÉåmÉËUuÉiÉïiÉå||||
Like the stellar wheel rotating (repeating) in the sky, the
comet-wheel also repeats in the sky.
Vr.Garga should have been a keen observer, as he says Dhūma-
ketu before setting, sends a jet of smoke away from the Sun
astamana-kāle tu raveh dhūmam vimuncati.

KAKA && DHUMAKETUDHUMAKETU ALREADY APPEAR IN THE

KA & & DHUMAKETU DHUMAKETU ALREADY APPEAR IN THE RIGVEDA. FLOODS ARE MENTIONED CLEARLY IN THE

RIGVEDA.

FLOODS ARE MENTIONED CLEARLY IN THE SHATAPATHA BRAHMANA.

VARAHA MIHIRA QUOTES PARASHARA, GARGA, ASITA DEVALA AND OTHERS TO MENTION

TVASHTA, VISHVARUPA, KABANDHA, TASKARA, ANGIRASA, VIBHAVASU, TRISHIKHA, TRISHIRA

AS CELESTIAL OBJECTS (KETU).

ALL THE ABOVE NAMES APPEAR IN THE RIGVEDA.

TRADITIONALLY THEY ARE TAKEN AS EPITHETS OF AGNI THAT IS FIRE.

Atharvaveda Samhitā; (19.9.8-10) Shanti Mantra: zÉÇ lÉÉå pÉÔÍqÉÈ uÉåmrÉqÉÉlÉÉ zÉÇ
Atharvaveda Samhitā; (19.9.8-10) Shanti Mantra:
zÉÇ lÉÉå pÉÔÍqÉÈ uÉåmrÉqÉÉlÉÉ zÉÇ EsMüÉÌlÉWïûiÉÇ cÉ rÉiÉç| zÉÇ lÉÉå aÉëWûÉÈ
cÉlSìqÉxÉÉ zÉÇ AÉÌSirÉ¶É UÉWÒûhÉÉ | zÉqÉç lÉÉå qÉ×irÉÑkÉÔïqÉMåüiÉÑÈ
zÉÇ ÂSìÉÈ ÌiÉaqÉ iÉåeÉxÉÈ|

Who are the Rudras mentioned here? ULKA appears in the 10th Mandala of the Rigveda. Why earth is specially mentioned as hit by Ulka?

In contemporary worship following the Rigvedic branch, the prayer for Ketu is in plural number as

mÉÉsÉÉzÉkÉÔqÉëxÉÇMüÉzÉÉlÉç iÉÉUMüÉaÉëWûqÉxiÉMüÉlÉç | UÉæSìÉlÉç ÂSìÉiqÉMüÉlÉç
mÉÉsÉÉzÉkÉÔqÉëxÉÇMüÉzÉÉlÉç iÉÉUMüÉaÉëWûqÉxiÉMüÉlÉç |
UÉæSìÉlÉç ÂSìÉiqÉMüÉlÉç bÉÉåUÉlÉç iÉÉlÉç MåüiÉÔlÉç mÉëhÉqÉÉqrÉWûqÉç ||
I bow to Ketū who are of the color of palāśa smoke, who have
starry heads, are ferocious, awesome and have Rudra for their
soul.
[Rgvedīya Navagraha Pūjā (Japa) Vidhi, Srimanmadhva
siddhanta granthaalaya,
Udupi. 11th edition, 2004.]

The above uses plural number referring to several Ketus. The version that replaces the Plural by the Singular is also available.

Ketuun is placed by Ketum etc. In any case this is the COMET and not the lunar node!

SIDDHANTIC ASTRONOMY IS SILENT ABOUT COMETS. VARAHA-MIHIRA DECLARES THEY ARE UNPREDICTABLE AND OUTSIDE MATHEMATICS

HOW TO RECONCILE THIS WITH THE LIST OF 26 COMETS STATED WITH NAME AND YEAR NUMBER GIVEN BY PARASHARA AND VRIDDHA GARGA?

CAN WE FORM AT LEAST A QUALITATIVE PICTURE OF THE SKY AS DESCRIBED IN SOME OF THE RIGVEDIC HYMNS?

WHAT TYPE OF AGNI IS MEANT BY DHUMAKETU IN THE RIGVEDA?

WHY IS THIS SO CLOSELY RELATED TO MARUTS AND VIBHAVASU?

ASSUMING RIGVEDA TO BE INTERNALLY CONSISTENT CAN MARUTS BE IDENTIFIED WITH ANY OBJECTS OTHER THAN METEORITIC SHOWERS?

IS THE INTERPRETATION OF MARUTS AS WIND-THUNDER-STORM GODS WRONG?

EDITEDEDITED WITHWITH CRITICALCRITICAL NOTESNOTES BYBY AA TEAMTEAM OFOF TENTEN SCHOLARSSCHOLARS MYSOREMYSORE
EDITEDEDITED WITHWITH CRITICALCRITICAL NOTESNOTES BYBY AA
TEAMTEAM OFOF TENTEN SCHOLARSSCHOLARS
MYSOREMYSORE PALACEPALACE EDITIONEDITION
AA SERIESSERIES ININ 3636 VOLUMESVOLUMES EACHEACH OFOF 10001000 PAGESPAGES

Dictionary meaning of KETU: FLAG, INSIGNIA, HERALD,

COMET, KNOWLEDGE, MEMORY PROMPTER

DISTRIBUTION OF THIS WORD IN RIGVEDA

The word ketu and its derivatives occur eighty times in RV, with the following distribution.

[I:19; II: 0; III:10; IV: 3; V: 8; VI: 7; VII: 8; VIII: 4; IX: 3; X: 18]

What strikes here as significant is the absence of the word in the second book and its increased use in the first and the tenth books. Another feature of the first and the tenth mandala is the use of the word dhūmaketu which means comet in several Indian Languages.

AGNYUTPAATAU DHUUMAKETUH (AMARA KOSHA)

DHUMAKETUDHUMAKETU

DHUMAKETU DHUMAKETU First book thrice (1.27.11, 1.44.3, 1.94.1) Eighth book twice (8.43.4, 8.44.10) Tenth book twice

First book thrice (1.27.11, 1.44.3, 1.94.1)

Eighth book twice (8.43.4, 8.44.10)

Tenth book twice (10.4.5, 10.12.2).

Another interesting feature is the occurrence, in the tenth book, of words

Bhāsāketu (10.20.3) and Vrsāketu (10.92.1)
Bhāsāketu (10.20.3) and Vrsāketu (10.92.1)

which are particularization of the word Ketu to specific nameable objects.

1.27 AGNI

1.27 AGNI In the first verse itself agni is likened to a horse with a tail

In the first verse itself agni is likened to a horse with a tail. MPRV which closely follows Sāyana rightly comments that there can be no special similarity between any type of fire and a tailed horse!

But, if it is understood as a celestial fire like a comet, its characterization as having a tail (vaaravantam) would be appropriate.

In the next verse this object is qualified as having wide motion (pr.thupragaamaa), again hinting at a comet. The 11th hymn with the traditional meaning as given in MPRV is

1.27 May the great, illimitable, smoke bannered and brilliant Agni, be pleased with our rite

1.27

May the great, illimitable, smoke bannered and brilliant Agni, be pleased with our rite and inspire us.

The above is clearly the literal meaning. The word animaanahis explained by Sāyana as an object without any fixed size, shape or measure (niyata parimaan.a varjitah).

If this agni were to have a tail, (Vaaravantam) have perceptible movement and also be huge (mahaan) without specific measure (animaano) it could as well be a comet described aptly by the word Dhuumaketu

1.44 Here agn i is qualified as dhuumaketu and bhaarjika . The latter word is

1.44

Here agni is qualified as dhuumaketu and bhaarjika. The latter word is interpreted as shining. For this, Sayana cites the Nirukta (6.4) of Yaska: bhaarjikahprasiddha-bhaah| dhuumaketuh samidhaa bhaarjiikah ityapi nigamo bhavati. This may mean one who is shining or may mean one who is famous as Bhaa.

This agni is addressed in the next verse as Guest (atithi) and later as Vibhaavasu who had shone previously at many dawns (puurvaa anu us.aso vibhavaso didetha)

This hymn ends in with a request to the fire- tongued Marut s ( agni-jihvaa

This hymn ends in with a request to the fire- tongued Maruts (agni-jihvaah) to be heard. This hymn appears to be closely related with the hymns of the 8th book quoted below. If the MPRV tradition is accepted it follows, this hymn is an invocation to Agni, the comet god, already deified from previous memory or tradition.

8.43 Individual forms of swift wind-impelled smoke-bannered fires move in the sky. These separated fires

8.43

Individual forms of swift wind-impelled smoke-bannered fires move in the sky. These separated fires shining in the front appear like heralds of the dawn. The next verse 6 is about the black dust raised by the feet of Jaatavedas as he travels, when fire spreads on the earth.

As per Brihaddevata terrestrial fire is called Agni, fire in the mid-space is Jaatavedas and the fire in the sky (divi) is Vais’vaanara. No doubt there is a mystic meaning to the word Jaatavedas, but the localization of this fire is again mentioned in BD (2.31) with an extra information that this fire is seen by all, created again and again in mid-space.

8.44 Sayan.a interprets the word vibhaavasu as agni with the meaning ‘ one having light

8.44

Sayan.a interprets the word vibhaavasu as agni with the meaning ‘one having light for wealth.’(diiptidhanam). If here also dhuumaketu meant ordinary sacrificial fire, why once again the composer refers to agni as the banner of sacrifices?

On the other hand the matter-of-fact meaning would be

We pray to the wise guileless (divine) invoker, the comet (smoke bannered) Vibhaavasu, who is the banner of sacrifices.

There is nothing in hymn 8.44 that would contradict the above direct meaning.

In verse 7, agni is called ancient (pratnam) and invoker (hotaaram) and the guest of honour in sacrifices (adhvaraan.aam abhis’riyam).

In verse 10, quoted above, this ancient agni is in the objective case as dhuumaketum vibhaavasum. The use of the word ketu in the second half would be appropriate in the sense of a herald.

10.4.5 Where is the new agni born? He is present in the old plants, grey

10.4.5

Where is the new agni born? He is present in the old plants, grey haired, smoke-bannered. Though not needing a bath, as he is pure, he rushes to water like a bull…. This interpretation appears forced. The simple meaning based on the context of the previous and later verses would be of a fire that was white in color and stationed above a forest. Its rush towards water may be a real event of a fireball entering a water body. This matches with Agni being called Jaatavedahlater in the 7th verse, the meaning of which has been seen to be a fire in mid- space. On the whole, Dhuumaketu in this hymn remains ambiguous, but is still linked to a fire that approaches a water body, from above.

Maruts

The brief review above brings out characters of the original agni called Dhuumaketu, as well as its connection with two other celestial objects namely the Maruts and Vibhaavasu.

Maruts are a group of deities, usually known as the Sons of Rudra. Traditionally Maruts are taken as the counterparts of winds or thunder storms.

Modern scholars have accepted this interpretation without critical evaluation of the hymns.

The key discriminatory feature of Maruts is that they were a collection of individuals who could be seen and hence countable in some sense. They are said to be separated among themselves.

They increased by two and three and their count varied from twenty-one (1.133.6) to forty-nine (8.28.5) to sixty three (8.96.8). They could even be seen in waves of thousands.

If these properties were to be reconciled with a physically possible natural object, Maruts are to be taken as a shower of meteorites.

Maruts are erfered more than 500 times in RV. 33 complete hymns are dedicated to them. They appear in all the mandalas. They are the fourth most cited deities of RV

.
.

1.37.7

To withstand your ferocious journey man has strengthened his dwelling with columns. Even rugged hills get crushed (at your approach).

Maruts have mowed down men on earth and have made mountains fall. Wherever the group of Maruts goes, everyone is sure to hear their roaring sound (1.37.12, 13). Maruts come from the sky to the earth, but not the other way round (1.38.2). That Maruts could not go back from earth is ingeniously expressed in the next verse, (1.38.4)

earth is ingeniously expressed in the next verse, (1.38.4) Hey! Children of Pr.s’ni you ma y

Hey! Children of Pr.s’ni you may become mortals, but let those who laud you remain not dead.

If these deities were really harbingers of monsoon rainfall, the following descriptions appear out of place.

rainfall, the following descriptions appear out of place . At the roar of the Maruts, every
rainfall, the following descriptions appear out of place . At the roar of the Maruts, every

At the roar of the Maruts, every house on the

earth shook. The people also trembled.

(1.38.10)

When you overthrow what is stable and whirl away what is heavy, your course is through

forests and through the mountains.

(1.39.3)

Nodha Gautama describes Maruts in 1.64 as having fearful forms. They are drops (falling objects) and shining like suns (asuraah ghoravarpasah drapsin.ah suuryaa iva s’ucayah|

1.64.1).

His description indicates that Maruts induced winds and rains before their arrival. In the hymns 1.86, 1.87 and 1.88 Gotama Raahugana mentions that Maruts were being worshipped by people since many years seeking protection.

Maruts are described as having wheels of gold and rushing like boars with tusks of iron (ayodamstraan vidhaavato varaahuun).

The hymns 1.166 onwards, by Agastya further reveal the real physical nature of Maruts. Agastya says, all creatures on earth along with the dwellings shake in fear that they will get hit by the weapons of Maruts. The tearing weapons of Maruts hit animals like well aimed darts. Maruts are visible at a distance shining like stars.

Marut s are visible at a distance shining like stars. 1.166.11 They come down to earth

1.166.11

They come down to earth together effortless, with burning looks and shake the mountains

svayuktah divah vrthaa ava āyayuh…bhrājadrstayah drlhāni cit acucyuvuh || 1.168.5.
svayuktah divah vrthaa ava āyayuh…bhrājadrstayah drlhāni
cit acucyuvuh || 1.168.5.

The next verse, indirectly mentions that they enter the sea patatha tvesham arn.avam. 1.168.6

1.172 Marut s on their approach gleam like serpents (ahi bhaanavah ). Far be from

1.172

Marut s on their approach gleam like serpents (ahi bhaanavah ).

Maruts on their approach gleam like serpents (ahi bhaanavah).

Far be from us, your impetuous shaft. Far from us be the stone you hurl

Far be from us, your impetuous shaft. Far from us be the stone you hurl (1.172.2)

If one agrees to the principle of internal consistency as an approach for understanding an

If one agrees to the principle of internal consistency as an approach for understanding an ancient text like RV, one can not assign different meanings to the same word used in similar contexts.

Traditionalists take the word parvata in connection with Maruts to be mountains in some verses but as clouds in other places.

Example of this contradiction is in hymn 3.26 attributed to Vishvaamitra.

Sayana assumes Maruts produce rain of water and hence takes the word parvataan to mean clouds,

There is nothing in the three verses 3.26.4- 6 to indicate ordinary rainfall.

The phrase marutahpravepayanti parvataan should mean that Maruts shake the mountains. This would be consistent in all places if Maruts are understood to be representing a strong shower of meteorites.

In the 5th book Maruts are called vaas’imantah (5.57.2). As per Yaska this refers to weapons made of stones or to voice (vaas’ibhi ashma mayibhi iti vaa vaagbhiriti vaa|| Ni-4.19). Clearly, the epithet refers to stony meteorites or to their rumbling sound

The hymn 6.66 is about Maruts by Bhaaradwaaja Baarhaspatya. Here the poet describes Maruts as samaanam in the first verse.

Sāyana comments: Maruts are always of the same form (marutah sadaa samaanaruupaah) and quotes RV 5.60.5 highlighting there are no elders and youngsters among them (ajyesthaaso akanisthaasa ete). The next verse mentions that Maruts shone like fires and increased by two and three

(8.7.34-36) ( As the Maruts arrive) hills ge t hit and disturbed in their position.

(8.7.34-36)

(As the Maruts arrive) hills get hit and disturbed in their position. Even mountains get controlled. Speedy carriers bear the flying Maruts through space. They are givers of riches to the worshipper. Agni was born previously (among gods) bright like the sun. Then the Maruts stood surrounding him with their lights.

The above rendering closely follows Sayana, with the word girayahhere being taken as hills by him also. The word aaksnayaavaano is explained by Sayana as traveling faster than the eyes. However, akshna- may mean axles, figuratively describing the tumbling of the falling objects.

Taurids annual meteor shower associated with the comet Encke
Taurids annual meteor shower
associated with the comet Encke
Taurids annual meteor shower associated with the comet Encke Thunder Storm MARUTS FORM A GANA THAT
Taurids annual meteor shower associated with the comet Encke Thunder Storm MARUTS FORM A GANA THAT

Thunder Storm MARUTS FORM A GANA THAT IS A GROUP. CAN THUNDER/LIGHTNING BE CONSIDERED SO?

Dure drsho ye divyaa iva strbhih, 1 . 3 8 . METEOR SHOOTS ACROSS THE

Dure drsho ye divyaa iva strbhih, 1.38.

Dure drsho ye divyaa iva strbhih, 1 . 3 8 . METEOR SHOOTS ACROSS THE EAST
Dure drsho ye divyaa iva strbhih, 1 . 3 8 . METEOR SHOOTS ACROSS THE EAST

METEOR SHOOTS ACROSS THE EAST COAST OF ORISSA. THE STATESMAN, 27 TH SEPTEMBER 2003.

*FOR A FEW SECONDS IT APPEARED TO BE DAYLIGHT!

*SOME HEARD A RUMBLING SOUND.

*ONE DEAD

*ELEVEN INJURED

*HUNDREDS FLEE

*THATCHED HOUSES BURNT

*STONY DEBRIS RECOVERED

The Perseid Meteor Shower
The Perseid Meteor Shower
A Thunder Storm
A Thunder Storm

Move like the nave of a wheel with spokes (rathaanaam na ye araah sanaabhayah | 10.78.4). Saayana : eveneven thoughthough MarutsMaruts areare many,many, theythey movemove equallyequally spacedspaced likelike spokesspokes connectedconnected toto thethe samesame pointpoint atat thethe centercenter ofof aa wheel.wheel.

Can such picturesque descriptions be valid for any event other than a shower of meteorites ?

GEOGRAPHICALGEOGRAPHICAL MARKERSMARKERS

GEOGRAPHICAL GEOGRAPHICAL MARKERS MARKERS RV PROVIDES INFORMATION ON WHERE THE MARUTS WERE OBSERVED. THE MOST LIKELY

RV PROVIDES INFORMATION ON WHERE THE MARUTS WERE OBSERVED. THE MOST LIKELY PLACES OF THEIR LANDINGS ARE ALSO HINTED AT.

1)RV I.186 IS ABOUT MARUTS FLYING OVER IRIN.A WITH THEIR SPARKLING MISSILES.

IRIN.A IS ASSOCIATED WITH THE RAN-OF-KUTCH.

“GEOGRAPHICAL LOCATION OF VEDIC IRIN.A”

RNI AND BPR, J GEOLOGICAL SOC. IND., 70, November 2007, 699-705.

2) Sarasvati is followed by Maruts (3.54.13;

2.30.8)

3) Maruts over Rivers Parushni and Yamuna

(4.30)

4) Marut’s wheels break hills near River Parushni.

(5.52.9)

5) Susome śaryanāvatyārjike pastyāvati | yayuh

nicakrayā narah||

(8.7.29)

Maruts went downwards to Susoma, Rijika, śaryanāvati full of dwellings.

FURTHER COMET IMAGERY
FURTHER COMET IMAGERY

R.V. I.162

READS LIKE AN EYE WITNESS ACCOUNT OF SEEING A CELESTIAL OBJECT.

IN THE SKY LIKE A LINE OF

SWANS…GOLD-

HORNED, IRON FOOTED, MOVING FAST… HE WAS A

LESSER INDRA.

The famous hymns 1.162 and 1.163 on Ashva by Auchathya are traditionally taken to refer to horse-sacrifice (ashvamedha). But these typically describe a bright horse- like object moving in the sky.

In hymn 1.162, the celestial horse, a replica of which is sacrificed in the Ashvamedha is described.

This horse is the medhyaashva born out of

Tvas.t.aa (1.162.19).

[Sayana Bhashya]

This particular verse has two meanings referring to both the divine horse which was killed by gods and the terrestrial animal which is similarly sacrificed, by men.

MPRV clarifies the close relation ship between Tvas.t.aa and Arvan, the Horse by quoting Taitt.Sam

5.1.11

the Horse by quoting T a i t t . S a m 5.1.11 tvas 

tvastā vīram devakāmam jajāna tvasturarvā jāyata āśuraśvahBirth of the Horse in the sky appears in MBh also.

tvas  t  urarv ā j ā yata āś ura ś vah  Birth of

Adi parv.66.36

tvas  t  urarv ā j ā yata āś ura ś vah  Birth of

Further, the poet describes the sequence in which he saw the horse. In (v.5) he says; I saw your reins (te bhadrā raśanā apaśyam). Next the poet saw the head of this horse. MPRV reports two types of arranging the words of (v.6), to yield meanings applicable to the earthly horse and the heavenly horse respectively. In the derived meaning, the horse is said to be going from the earth by way of heavens to the sun. The primary meaning is; the poet in first person says that he saw the head of the horse in the sky flying down towards the earth (divā avah

patayantam patatri

continued in the next verse to inform: I beheld your best form at the cow’s foot (te rūpam uttamam apaśyam……ā pade goh). Sayana takes the word gohpade to mean the sacrificial place on earth, which is the secondary meaning of the hymn as per the sacrificial tradition. However, primarily for an object seen in the sky it should have been natural to mention its location with respect to the stars and hence one should take cow’s-foot as the naksatra with that meaning which is prostha-pada (Pegasi).

śirahapaśyam || 1.163.6). This is

Sun Cover

There are too many hymns and legends about this event for one to ignore the absence of sunlight as a poetic license to describe the dark night of the human soul or as the prolonged winter at northern latitudes. In RV (1.51.4) Indra is said to have established sun after destroying Vrtra. In RV (1.86) maruts are prayed to remove the darkness and create the light for which people were longing. Hymn (1.175) is about Indra stealing Sun’s wheel, which is a euphemism for the absence of normally expected rise, movement and setting of the sun. Hymns (1.183 & 184) refer to the ending of a period of darkness. In the second book hymn (2.15) is about Indra crushing the vehicle of Usas, which is a metaphor for a continuous dawn like condition without a visible sun. Indra had to be supplicated by men who struggled to get sunlight (2.19). Indra found the sun dissolving in darkness near the cow’s-foot (sūryam viveda tamasi ksayantam | 3.39.5). In (4.16.9) Indra is implored in the battle for sunlight. Indra is said to have hurt Usas, daughter of the sky, near River Vipāśa (4.30.9-11), which refers to absence of day break.

Maruts should have had an important role to play in these natural events, since they are said to reduce heat and conduct a sacrifice in the heavens (5.54.1). In (5.59.5) the poet says that maruts are capable of blocking the sun by their showers (sūryasya caksuhpra minanti vrstibhih).

This has been routinely taken, by many translators, to be a cloud cover during a rainy day. However, this interpretation does not match with the immediate next verse, which refers to a special event in the sky. Like line of birds they flew in lengthened lines from heaven’s ridges to the borders of the sky. Rudra’s children are all similar with none younger or older. (5.59. 6, 7) The above could have been a wide meteoritic ring or tail of a comet obstructing the sun’s orb being seen from the earth. In (6.7.5) vaiśvānara is praised to have freed and set the sun in the sky for all to see. A similar statement occurs in (10.156.4) mentioning that agni has made Sun mount the sky.

One of the most cryptic descriptions of the sun being covered up is in the seventh book, tānīdahāni bahulānyāsan yā prācīnamuditā sūryasya | yatahpari jāra ivācarantyuso dadrkse na punaryatīva ||

(7.76.3)

This has been routinely taken, by many translators, to be a cloud cover during a rainy day. However, this interpretation does not match with the immediate next verse, which refers to a special event in the sky. Like line of birds they flew in lengthened lines from heaven’s ridges to the borders of the sky. Rudra’s children are all similar with none younge or older. (5.59. 6, 7) The above could have been a wide meteoritic ring or tail of a comet obstructing the sun’s orb being seen from the earth. In (6.7.5) vaiśvānara is praised to have freed and set the sun in the sky for all to see. A similar statement occurs in (10.156.4) mentioning that agni has made Sun mount the sky.

One of the most cryptic descriptions of the sun being covered up is in the seventh book,

tānīdahāni bahulānyāsan yā prācīnamuditā sūryasya | yatahpari jāra ivācarantyuso dadrkse na punaryatīva ||

(7.76.3)

Many days were over before the old sun rose again. In this period Usas was seen behaving like a maiden with her lover.

The above is a plain statement that once, there was a long gap between dawn and sun rise. It also implies that the Vedic seers considered this period to be usas or dawn only. Since nothing is said about the nights, it is conjectured that they could recognize the passage of time as implied in the key phrase ahāni bahulāni (many days). The immediate next verse (7.76.4) mentions about the ancestors of the poet rejoicing after discovering the hidden light of sun. This incident and the above verse are the basis for all later legends associating Prajāpati (Creator) with Usas (his own creation figuratively called daughter) as in the Vedic Brāhmana literature

SUMMARY

THE RIGVDIC SKY WAS MORE ACTIVE THAN WHAT WE SEE TODAY. RV DESCRIBES ONE OR MORE SPACTACULAR EVENTS WITH THE PRESENCE OF COMETS, NEO’S, FIRE BALLS, METEORITIC SHOWERS, DUST VEILS, and SUN COVER.

THIS WAS THE START OF THE CONCEPT OF YAJNA WHERE LIFE WAS SACRIFICED TO PLEASE THE FEROCIOUS GODS, SIMILAR TO WHAT GODS THEMSELVES DID ONCE IN KURUKSHETRA (Maitrayani Samhita)?

ASHVAMEDHA ON EARTH IS REPLICA OF A CELESTIAL EVENT IN WHICH A COMET (ENCKE) SPLIT ? TVASHTR MEANS ONE WHO SPLITS or CLEAVES (CARPENTER)

KETU STANDS FOR NOT ONLY FIRE, FLAG,COMET BUT ALSO FOR KNOWLEDGE. COULD THIS BE THE SIGNATURE OF THE TIME WHEN VEDIC INTELLECTUAL DISCORUSE BIFURCATED INTO

PURVA AND UTTARA MIMAMSA

OR

KARMA KAANDA AND JNAANA KAANDA?

In the Maitrayani Upanisad (1.4) the questions raised are: “why do the oceans dry up, why do the mountain peaks fall down, why the Polestar drifts, why the earth moves from its position….” before discussing Prana, Atman & Brahman.

COMETARY CATASTROPHES, COSMIC DUST AND ECOLOGICAL DISASTERS IN HISTORICAL TIMES:

THE ASTRONOMICAL FRAMEWORK BILL NAPIER is an astronomer at Armagh Observatory. In his paper 'Giant comets, catastrophes and civilisation.’ we read:

The Taurid Complex of meteors, meteoroids, asteroids and Comet Encke has probably been a significant and regularly visible celestial hazard from the last Ice Age through to the present day. These data lead to the expectation that history has been punctuated by: (i) Tunguska-like impacts, singly or as part of fireball swarms; (ii) freezing events of decadal duration, due to cometary dusting of the stratosphere; and (iii) occasional disastrous inundations of coastal areas due to small- body ocean impacts.

ConclusionConclusion

Conclusion Conclusion There is still considerable disagreement about the detailed nature and date of this catastrophe.

There is still considerable disagreement about the detailed nature and date of this catastrophe. Growing number of scholars agree that we are indeed dealing with an abrupt natural disaster with devastating effects on civilizations in India, West Asia, Europe and North Africa,… perhaps a global event.

PRESERVEDPRESERVED INFORMATIONINFORMATION ININ THETHE VEDICVEDIC ANDAND PURANICPURANIC LITERATURELITERATURE POINTSPOINTS TOTO EVENTSEVENTS OFOF SIMILARSIMILAR NATURENATURE HARMONIZINGHARMONIZING BROADLYBROADLY WITHWITH THETHE SAMESAME EPOCH.EPOCH.