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Speed of light in Vedas...can you prove it wrong??
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aryaveer Offline
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Post: #1
Speed of light in Vedas...can you prove it wrong??

“Nimisharda” is a phrase used in Indian languages of Sanskrit origin while referring to something that happens/moves instantly, similar to the ‘blink of an eye’. Nimisharda means half of a nimesa. (Ardha is half)
In Sanskrit ‘Nimisha’ means ‘blink of an eye’ and Nimisharda implies within the blink of an eye. This phrase is commonly used to refer to instantaneous events.

Below is the mathematical calculations of a research done by S S De and P V Vartak on the speed of light calculated using the Rigvedic hymns and commentaries on them.

The fourth verse of the Rigvedic hymn 1:50 (50th hymn in book 1 of rigveda) is as follows:

तरणिर्विश्वदर्शतो जयोतिष्क्र्दसि सूर्य |

विश्वमा भासिरोचनम |


taraNir vishvadarshato jyotishkrdasi surya |

vishvamaa bhaasirochanam ||

which means

“Swift and all beautiful art thou, O Surya (Surya=Sun), maker of the light,

Illuming all the radiant realm.”

Commenting on this verse in his Rigvedic commentary, Sayana who was a minister in the court of Bukka of the great Vijayanagar Empire of Karnataka in South India (in early 14th century) says:

tatha ca smaryate yojananam. sahasre dve dve sate dve ca yojane

ekena nimishardhena kramaman.

which means “It is remembered here that Sun (light) traverses 2,202 yojanas in half a nimisha”

NOTE: Nimisharda= half of a nimisha

In the vedas Yojana is a unit of distance and Nimisha is a unit of time.

Unit of Time: Nimesa

The Moksha dharma parva of Shanti Parva in Mahabharata describes Nimisha as follows:

15 Nimisha = 1 Kastha

30 Kashta = 1 Kala

30.3 Kala = 1 Muhurta

30 Muhurtas = 1 Diva-Ratri (Day-Night)

We know Day-Night is 24 hours

So we get 24 hours = 30 x 30.3 x 30 x 15 nimisha

in other words 409050 nimisha

We know 1 hour = 60 x 60 = 3600 seconds

So 24 hours = 24 x 3600 seconds = 409050 nimisha

409050 nimesa = 86,400 seconds

1 nimesa = 0.2112 seconds (This is a recursive decimal! Wink of an eye=.2112 seconds!)

1/2 nimesa = 0.1056 seconds

Unit of Distance: Yojana

Yojana is defined in Chapter 6 of Book 1 of the ancient vedic text “Vishnu Purana” as follows

10 ParamAnus = 1 Parasúkshma

10 Parasúkshmas = 1 Trasarenu

10 Trasarenus = 1 Mahírajas (particle of dust)

10 Mahírajas= 1 Bálágra (hair’s point)

10 Bálágra = 1 Likhsha

10 Likhsha= 1 Yuka

1o Yukas = 1 Yavodara (heart of barley)

10 Yavodaras = 1 Yava (barley grain of middle size)

10 Yava = 1 Angula (1.89 cm or approx 3/4 inch)

6 fingers = 1 Pada (the breadth of it)

2 Padas = 1 Vitasti (span)

2 Vitasti = 1 Hasta (cubit)

4 Hastas = a Dhanu, a Danda, or pauruSa (a man’s height), or 2 Nárikás = 6 feet

2000 Dhanus = 1 Gavyuti (distance to which a cow’s call or lowing can be heard) = 12000 feet

4 Gavyutis = 1 Yojana = 9.09 miles

Calculation:

So now we can calculate what is the value of the speed of light in modern units based on the value given as 2202 yojanas in 1/2 nimesa

= 2202 x 9.09 miles per 0.1056 seconds

= 20016.18 miles per 0.1056 seconds

= 189547 miles per second !!


As per the modern science speed of light is 186000 miles per second !

And so I without the slightest doubt attribute the slight difference between the two values to our error in accurately translating from vedic units to SI/CGS units.
Note that we have approximated 1 angula as exactly 3/4 inch. While the approximation is true, the angula is not exactly 3/4 inch. -


To be a vedic dharmi you need to be a rationalist. rationalism is necessary to know god.
know vedas . know the actual sanatan dharma, vedic dharma.
http://agniveer.com
(This post was last modified: 28-09-2011 10:28 AM by aryaveer.)
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Lije Offline
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Post: #2
RE: Speed of light in Vedas...can you prove it wrong??

This is from the discussion on facebook between an agniveer fanboy and a freethinker:


SSK (agniveer fanboy): ‎SSB (freethinker), lets move onto yojana. Sayana lived during 14th century. During his period, the apex mathematician still was Aryabhatta.

The ancient commentator on the Arthaśāstra says the goruta is 2000 dhanus, which would make the yojana about 9 miles.
hope it suffices.

SSK: error. Kautilya's Arthasastra was the apex mathematical text, it says one yojana is 9 miles. To add, why does the calculation give exact value, when 9 miles was used?

SSB: ‎//Kautilya's Arthasastra was the apex mathematical text, it says one yojana is 9 miles. To add, why does the calculation give exact value, when 9 miles was used?//
Wow, who told you that arthashastra is a mathematical text??It was a treatise on economics, politics and military strategy.Great sources you do cite for proving your points.And yojana itself had different vlaues at different times..In aryabhateeyam,an actual mathematical and astronomical treatise, it is defined as the distance traveled by a bullock cart in one day.Quite an good definition for a standard, isn't it.And the value he used for yojana could have been anywhere form 5 to 13 kms.And adding to the confusion by the time paramesvara(14 century) turned up,it was defined as the time a bullock can travell between sunrise and sunset

SSB: ‎//To add, why does the calculation give exact value, when 9 miles was used?//
My dear friend that is called curve fitting in engineering.
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Kanad Kanhere Offline
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Post: #3
RE: Speed of light in Vedas...can you prove it wrong??

Aryaveer: let me narrate you a simple event that would have happened to a lot of people. Had a maths test, kind of complicated question (something that required a page worth of calculation) and I wrote the answer in just one step. Funny thing was that my teacher, instead of being awed by my brilliance, had CORRECTLY figured out that I had cheated. She didn't presume that I had a flash of genius or divine revelation but came to a basic conclusion that I had copied the answer from somebody else's paper.

So real value of your Vedas would be: if they give a detailed explanation of how they arrived at this number, basically an experiment that can be carried out even today, and not how ingenious their followers are in tweaking fuzzy units.
(This post was last modified: 28-09-2011 12:11 PM by Kanad Kanhere.)
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Lije Offline
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Post: #4
RE: Speed of light in Vedas...can you prove it wrong??

It is not enough to just decree that speed of light is so and so without providing any means to verify it. To see why such decrees are useless, see this thread. While it may be fashionable to use words ("rationalist") without understanding them, a true sign of wisdom would be to fully understand what such words imply. For example, a rationalist subscribes to science to decide what fact propositions are true and what are not. And falsifiability is a basic concept of science.

Also, the history of measurement of speed of light is quite interesting. Now, if someone can show such experiments in scriptures of Sanatana Dogma, that will be something.
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Ajita Kamal Offline
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Post: #5
RE: Speed of light in Vedas...can you prove it wrong??

Quote:...which means

“Swift and all beautiful art thou, O Surya (Surya=Sun), maker of the light,

Illuming all the radiant realm.”

Commenting on this verse in his Rigvedic commentary, Sayana who was a minister in the court of Bukka of the great Vijayanagar Empire of Karnataka in South India (in early 14th century) says:

tatha ca smaryate yojananam. sahasre dve dve sate dve ca yojane

ekena nimishardhena kramaman.

which means “It is remembered here that Sun (light) traverses 2,202 yojanas in half a nimisha”

Firstly, I do not doubt that in Indian history there have been those with great scientific minds, but given the fact that religious dogma has played such a powerful role in stifling scientific thought in India, what we have inherited for the most part is not the genius of scientific inquiry but the duplicity of apologetic appropriation of science. This case is no different.

1. Irrelevance: How does the Rigvedic commentary mentioned above as what Sayana was addressing relate to the speed of light? It simply does not. So the title of this thread would be more accurate if it was "Speed of light in Vedas- a blatant lie by Hindu apologists".

2. Unstated major premise: Sayana said “It is remembered here that the Sun traverses 2,202 yojanas in half a nimisha”. The huge unstated major (false) premise here is that he was actually not referring to the Sun itself but to the speed of light. (As a side note, this is similar to how Muslim apologists use such unstated major premises to claim that the Quran has already stated that the moon did not produce its own light).

3. Further confirmation of the distortion: The Rigvedic statement is also about the sun not about light: “Swift and all beautiful art thou, O Surya (Surya=Sun), maker of the light". I'm not sure what the full context of Sayana's statement was, and the fact that it isn't presented here even by the apologists is extremely suspicious. But if he indeed is referring to the quoted statement from the Rig Veda, then it makes sense that he was actually talking about the sun.

4. What is science? : Let's ignore the fact that Yojana was an imprecise term used by an ancient and mostly illiterate people who lived by the land, to signify an approximate distance that was relevant to their lives. What's of importance in science is not the final answer, but the process of getting there. This is what differentiates blind coincidence from the scientific process. Religious apologists tend to misunderstand this and often focus on magically producing facts known to science from their religious scriptures. As others have stated here, cherry-picking (and distortion) is not evidence of anything.
Here's the same distortion by Islamists, debunked by Ali Sina.
http://www.faithfreedom.org/Articles/sina80229.htm

"Fossil rabbits in the Precambrian"
~ J.B.S.Haldane, on being asked to falsify evolution.
(This post was last modified: 28-09-2011 07:26 PM by Ajita Kamal.)
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arvindiyer Offline
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Post: #6
RE: Speed of light in Vedas...can you prove it wrong??

(28-09-2011 10:20 AM)aryaveer Wrote:  “Nimisharda” is a phrase used in Indian languages of Sanskrit origin while referring to something that happens/moves instantly, similar to the ‘blink of an eye’. Nimisharda means half of a nimesa. (Ardha is half)
...
Unit of Time: Nimesa
The Moksha dharma parva of Shanti Parva in Mahabharata describes Nimisha as follows:
.....
1 nimesa = 0.2112 seconds (This is a recursive decimal! Wink of an eye=.2112 seconds!)

(28-09-2011 10:20 AM)aryaveer Wrote:  10 Mahírajas= 1 Bálágra (hair’s point)

(28-09-2011 10:20 AM)aryaveer Wrote:  2000 Dhanus = 1 Gavyuti (distance to which a cow’s call or lowing can be heard) = 12000 feet

It's interesting how pseudoscience posts serve as a stimulus to read up on real science and history.
Here's a quick sanity check on the 'standardization' of the units proposed above.

1) A 2003 study appearing in the European Journal of Applied Physiology demonstrated a significant increase in eyeblink duration for drowsy subjects as opposed to awake subjects.

Citation: Caffier P P, Erdmann U, Ullsperger P. Experimental evaluation of eye-blink parameters as a drowsiness measure. Eur J Appl Physiol 2003; 89: 319-325

2) A 2001 study published in the European Journal of Dermatology notes considerable variation in hair thickness, ranging from approximately 40 to 80 micrometer.

Citation : R. Hoffmann, TrichoScan: combining epiluminescence microscopy with digital image analysis for the measurement of hair growth in vivo. Eur J Dermatol, 11 (2001), pp. 362–368.

3) A 1999 study published in Applied Animal Behavioral Science demonstrated how a typical farm practice of branding can produce variations in bovine vocalizations. Quoting the study:

Quote:Branded animals showed a greater frequency range in the fundamental, or lowest harmonic, of the audiospectrogram, (68.04 Hz±5.33 compared with 28 Hz±8.74, P<0.05), a higher maximum frequency (186.66 Hz±5.19 compared with 141.6 Hz±6.6, P<0.01). and a higher peak sound level (P<0.05).

Citation: Jon M Watts, Joseph M Stookey, Effects of restraint and branding on rates and acoustic parameters of vocalization in beef cattle, Applied Animal Behaviour Science, Volume 62, Issues 2-3, 15 February 1999, Pages 125-135, ISSN 0168-1591, 10.1016/S0168-1591(98)00222-6.

The claim now is that with all this variation in their units, the Vedic seers got the numbers right for some physical constants. Does the speed of light change when people droop off to sleep and blink longer or when people choose to breed cows that moo shriller? Or could it be that the Vedic seers, like the English who fixed the length of a yard as the length of the arm of Henry I, come up with some standard like this? A Nimisha is the time taken by Vasishta to blink when he arises from Yoga Nidra and a Bálágra is the width of a hair from Vishwamitra's beard. A Gavyuti is the distance at which Kamadhenu's distress call could be heard on the day when Vishwamitra attempted to snatch her from Vasishta.
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Lije Offline
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Post: #7
RE: Speed of light in Vedas...can you prove it wrong??

I still remember the class on units, measurements and measurements errors (in high school?) . Now here is someone who is trained to be a scientist and would be expected to know the importance of measurement errors. But look what religion did to his training! He thinks even if the speed of light given by Sayana is a coincidence, it is an astonishing coincidence, the kind of coincidence which high priests of academy wouldn't think as "astonishing". I suppose by "high priests" he means people who stick to science. But what is really "astonishing" here is the ignoring of basics of science.
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kpbolumbu01 Offline
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Post: #8
RE: Speed of light in Vedas...can you prove it wrong??

(29-09-2011 11:41 AM)Lije Wrote:  I still remember the class on units, measurements and measurements errors (in high school?) . Now here is someone who is trained to be a scientist and would be expected to know the importance of measurement errors. But look what religion did to his training! He thinks even if the speed of light given by Sayana is a coincidence, it is an astonishing coincidence, the kind of coincidence which high priests of academy wouldn't think as "astonishing". I suppose by "high priests" he means people who stick to science. But what is really "astonishing" here is the ignoring of basics of science.

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Surya_Siddhanta
http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Aryabhata
http://travelspedia.com/South-Asia/India.../6590.html
http://www.mercurytrip.com/blog/cheap-ti...a-pradesh/
http://www.indianetzone.com/56/ved_shala.htm
http://www.organiser.org/Encyc/2012/12/3...PageType=N

"The Arya-siddhanta, a lot work on astronomical computations, is known through the writings of Aryabhata's contemporary, Varahamihira, and later mathematicians and commentators, including Brahmagupta and Bhaskara I. This work appears to be based on the older Surya Siddhanta and uses the midnight-day reckoning, as opposed to sunrise in Aryabhatiya. It also contained a description of several astronomical instruments: the gnomon (shanku-yantra), a shadow instrument (chhAyA-yantra), possibly angle-measuring devices, semicircular and circular (dhanur-yantra / chakra-yantra), a cylindrical stick yasti-yantra, an umbrella-shaped device called the chhatra-yantra, and water clocks of at least two types, bow-shaped and cylindrical."

It is not a mere coincidence. Aryabhata knew how to use the instruments listed below and Aryabhata lived 9 centuries before Sayana. Which basic of science is being ignored by Kak according to you?
(edited for grammatical errors)
(This post was last modified: 23-04-2013 12:22 PM by kpbolumbu01.)
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Captain Mandrake Offline
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Post: #9
RE: Speed of light in Vedas...can you prove it wrong??

(22-04-2013 01:55 PM)kpbolumbu01 Wrote:  It also contained a description of several astronomical instruments: the gnomon (shanku-yantra), a shadow instrument (chhAyA-yantra), possibly angle-measuring devices, semicircular and circular (dhanur-yantra / chakra-yantra), a cylindrical stick yasti-yantra, an umbrella-shaped device called the chhatra-yantra, and water clocks of at least two types, bow-shaped and cylindrical."

Can you please explain how these instruments were used to measure the speed of light? Also please quantify the error in the measured speed of light in terms of the measurement errors of each instrument.
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kpbolumbu01 Offline
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Post: #10
RE: Speed of light in Vedas...can you prove it wrong??

What you quoted as my statement is from the wikipedia article (http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Aryabhata) and I have shown it within quotation marks. What I actually said are only the following three lines.

"It is not a mere coincidence. Aryabhata knew how to use the instruments listed below and Aryabhata lived 9 centuries before Sayana. Which basic of science is being ignored by Kak according to you? "
This is what Subhash Kak said about Sayana in 1998: (http://www.ece.lsu.edu/kak/sayana.pdf)
(edited for grammatical errors)
(This post was last modified: 23-04-2013 12:21 PM by kpbolumbu01.)
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Lije Offline
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Post: #11
RE: Speed of light in Vedas...can you prove it wrong??

(23-04-2013 12:20 PM)kpbolumbu01 Wrote:  What you quoted as my statement is from the wikipedia article (http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Aryabhata) and I have shown it within quotation marks. What I actually said are only the following three lines.

"It is not a mere coincidence. Aryabhata knew how to use the instruments listed below and Aryabhata lived 9 centuries before Sayana. Which basic of science is being ignored by Kak according to you? "
This is what Subhash Kak said about Sayana in 1998: (http://www.ece.lsu.edu/kak/sayana.pdf)
(edited for grammatical errors)

In the article I linked to originally, Kak is suggesting that Sayana could have stumbled upon the speed of light. Anyone who is well versed in the basics of science would know better. Unless there is good evidence, the reasonable conclusion is that Sayana did not know about the speed of light. Mere conjecture does not constitute evidence.

So what is it that you are objecting to?
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Captain Mandrake Offline
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Post: #12
RE: Speed of light in Vedas...can you prove it wrong??

(23-04-2013 12:20 PM)kpbolumbu01 Wrote:  What you quoted as my statement is from the wikipedia article (http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Aryabhata) and I have shown it within quotation marks. What I actually said are only the following three lines.

"It is not a mere coincidence. Aryabhata knew how to use the instruments listed below and Aryabhata lived 9 centuries before Sayana. Which basic of science is being ignored by Kak according to you? "
This is what Subhash Kak said about Sayana in 1998: (http://www.ece.lsu.edu/kak/sayana.pdf)
(edited for grammatical errors)

Ok, so Aryabatta knew how to use a bunch of instruments. So what? Are you implying that he used these instruments to measure the speed of light? If not then what was the purpose of that cut and paste?
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