S. R. Rao, formerly of the Archaeological
Survey of India, has pioneered marine
archaeology in India. Marine archaeological
findings seem to corroborate descriptions
in the Mahabharata of Dvaraka
as a large, well-fortified and prosperous
port city, which was built on land reclaimed
from the sea, and later taken back by
the sea. This lowering and raising of
the sea level during these same time
periods of the 15th and 16th
centuries B.C.E. is also documented
in historical records of the country
the extensive underwater discoveries
were the massive Dvaraka city wall,
a large door-socket and a bastion from
the fort wall.
rock-cut slipways of varying width,
extending from the beach to the intertidal
zone, a natural harbor, as well as a
number of olden stone ship anchors were
discovered, attesting to Dvaraka being
an ancient port city.
three headed motif on this conch-shell
seal (above), found in the Dvaraka excavations,
corroborates the reference in the scripture
Harivamsa that every citizen
of Dvaraka should carry a mudra
or seal of this type.
these underwater excavations add further
credibility to the validity of the historical
statements found in the Vedic literatures.
Archaeological Sites in North India
from Dvaraka, more than thirty-five
sites in North India have yielded archaeological
evidence and have been identified as
ancient cities described in the Mahabharata.
Copper utensils, iron, seals, gold &
silver ornaments, terracotta discs and
painted grey ware pottery have all been
found in these sites. Scientific dating
of these artifacts corresponds to the
non-aryan-invasion model of Indian antiquity.
Furthermore, the Matsya
and Vayu Puranas describe great
flooding which destroyed the capital
city of Hastinapur, forcing its inhabitants
to relocate in Kausambi. The soil of
Hastinapur reveals proof of this flooding.
Archaeological evidence of the new capital
of Kausambi has recently been found
which has been dated to the time period
just after this flood.
Similarly, in Kurukshetra, the
scene of the great Mahabharata
war, Iron arrows and spearheads (according to some sources) have
been excavated and dated by thermoluminence
to 2,800 B.C.E., the approximate date
of the war given within the Mahabharata
The Mahabharata also describes
three cities given to the Pandavas,
the heroes of the Mahabharata,
after their exile:
Sonaprastha & Indraprastha, which
is Delhi's Puranaqila. These sites have
been identified and yielded pottery
& antiquities, which show a cultural
consistency & dating consistent
for the Mahabharata period, again
verifying statements recorded in the
Thinkers Who Appreciated the Vedic Literatures
early indologists, in their missionary
zeal, widely vilified the Vedas as primitive
mythology, many of the worlds greatest thinkers admired the Vedas
as great repositories of advanced knowledge
and high thinking
Arthur Schopenhauer, the famed German
philosopher and writer, wrote that:
I "...encounter [in the Vedas]
deep, original, lofty thoughts... suffused
with a high and holy seriousness."
well-known early American writer Ralph
Waldo Emerson, read the Vedas daily.
Emerson wrote: "I
owed a magnificent day to the Bhagavat-Gita"
David Thoreau said: "In the morning
I bathe my intellect in the stupendous
philosophy of the Bhagavad Gita...
in comparison with which... our modern
world and its literature seems puny
great were Emerson and Thoreau's appreciation
of Vedantic literatures that they became
known as the American transcendentalists.
Their writings contain many thoughts
from Vedic Philosophy.
famous personalities who spoke of the
greatness of the Vedas were: Alfred
North Whitehead (British mathematician,
logician and philosopher), who stated
that: "Vedanta is the most impressive
metaphysics the human mind has conceived."
Robert Oppenheimer, the principle developer
of the atomic bomb, stated that "The
Vedas are the greatest privilege of
this century." During the explosion
of the first atomic bomb, Oppenheimer
quoted several Bhagavad-gita verses
from the 11th chapter, such as:
I am, cause of destruction of the worlds..."
Oppenheimer was asked if this is the
first nuclear explosion, he significantly
replied: "Yes, in modern times,"
implying that ancient nuclear explosions
may have previously occurred.
Lin Yutang, Chinese scholar and author,
wrote that: "India was China's
teacher in trigonometry, quadratic equations,
grammar, phonetics... " and so
Voltaire stated: "... everything
has come down to us from the banks of
these statements we see that many renowned
intellectuals believed that the Vedas
provided the origin of scientific thought.
Iron Pillar of Delhi
Vedic literatures contain descriptions
of advanced scientific techniques, sometimes
even more sophisticated than those used
in our modern technological world.
metallurgists have not been able to
produce iron of comparable quality to
22 foot high Iron Pillar of Delhi, which
is the largest hand forged block of
iron from antiquity.
pillar stands at mute testimony to the
highly advanced scientific knowledge
of metallurgy that was known in ancient
India. Cast in approximately the 3rd
century B.C., the six and a half ton
pillar, over two millennia has resisted
all rust and even a direct hit by the
artillary of the invading army of Nadir
Shah during his sacking of Delhi in
Vedic Cosmology is yet another ancient
Vedic science which can be confirmed
by modern scientific findings and this
is acknowledged by well known scientists
and authors, such as Carl Sagan and
Count Maurice Maeterlinck, who recognized
that the cosmology of the Vedas closely
parallels modern scientific findings.
Sagan stated, "Vedic
Cosmology is the only one in which the
time scales correspond to those of modern
Maurice Maeterlinck wrote of: "a
Cosmogony which no European conception
has ever surpassed."
astronomer Jean-Claude Bailly corroborated
the antiquity and accuracy of the Vedic
astronomical measurements as "more ancient than those
of the Greeks or Egyptians." And
that, "the movements of the stars
calculated 4,500 years ago, does not
differ by a minute from the tables of
ninety foot tall astronomical instrument
known as Samrat Yantra, built by the
learned King Suwai Jai Singh of Jaipur,
measures time to within two seconds
and other scientific accomplishments
of ancient India spread to other countries
along with mercantile and cultural exchanges.
There are almost one hundred references
in the Rig Veda alone to the ocean and
maritime activity. This is confirmed
by Indian historian R. C. Majumdar,
who stated that the people of the Indus-Sarasvata
Civilization engaged in trade with Sooma
and centers of culture in western Asia
Heliodorus Column and Cultural Links
example of these exchanges is found
in the inscriptions on the Heliodorus
in 113 B.C.E. by Heliodorus, a Greek
ambassador to India, and convert to
Vaisnavism, as well as the 2nd century
B.C.E. Coins of Agathocles, showing
images of Krishna and Balaram. These
artifacts stand testimony that Sanatan
Dharma predates Christianity.
This also confirms the link between
India and other ancient civilizations
such as Greece and shows that there
was a continuous exchange of culture,
philosophy and scientific knowledge
between India & other countries.
Indeed the Greeks learned many wonderful
things from India.
the famous French writer and philosopher)
stated that "Pythagoras went to
the Ganges to learn geometry."
Abraham Seidenberg, author of the authoritative
"History of Mathematics,"
credits the Sulba Sutras as inspiring
all mathematics of the ancient world
from Babylonia to Egypt to Greece.
Voltaire & Seidenberg have stated,
many highly significant mathematical
concepts have come from the Vedic culture,
The theorem bearing the name of the
Greek mathematician Pythagorus is found
in the Shatapatha Brahmana as
well as the Sulba Sutra, the
Indian mathematical treatise, written
centuries before Pythagorus was born.
The Decimal system, based on powers
of ten, where the remainder is carried
over to the next column, first mentioned
in the Taittiriya Samhita of
the Black Yajurveda.
The Introduction of zero as both a numerical
value and a place marker.
The Concept of infinity.
The Binary number system, essential
for computers, was used in Vedic verse
A hashing technique, similar to that
used by modern search algorithms, such
as Googles, was used in South Indian
musicology. From the name of a raga
one can determine the notes of the raga
from this Kathapayadi system. (See Figure
For further reading we refer you
to this excellent article on Vedic
Sound and Mantras
Vedas however are not as well known
for presenting historical and scientific
knowledge as they are for expounding
subtle sciences, such as the power of
mantras. We all recognize the power
of sound itself by it's effects, which
can be quite dramatic. Perhaps we all
have seen a high-pitched frequency shatter
an ordinary drinking glass. Such
a demonstration shows that Loud Sounds
can produce substantial reactions
is commonly believed that mantras can
carry hidden power which can in turn
produce certain effects. The ancient
Vedic literatures are full of descriptions
of weapons being called by mantra. For
example, many weapons were invoked by
mantra during the epic Kuruksetra War,
wherein the Bhagavad-gita itself was
ancient deployment of Brahmastra weapons,
equivalent to modern day nuclear weapons
are described throughout the Vedic literatures.
Additionally, mantras carry hidden
spiritual power, which can produce significant
benefits when chanted properly. Indeed,
the Vedas themselves are sound vibrations
in literary form and carry a profound
message. Spiritual disciplines recommend
meditational practices such as silent
meditation, silent recitation of mantras
and also the verbal repetition of specific
mantras out loud.
Clinical Test of the Benefits of Mantra
Chanting was performed on three groups
of sixty-two subjects, males and females
of average age 25. They chanted the
Hare Krsna Maha Mantra twenty-five minutes
each day under strict clinical supervision.
showed that regular chanting of the
Hare Krsna Maha Mantra reduces Stress
and depression and helps reduce bad
habits & addictions. These results
formed a PhD Thesis at Florida State
practitioners claim many benefits from
Mantra Meditation such as increased
realization of spiritual wisdom, inner
peace and a strong communion with God
and the spiritual realm. These effects
may be experienced by following the
designated spiritual path.
of the evidence given in this presentation
is for the apara vidya or
material knowledge of the Vedic literatures.
The Vedas however, are more renowned
for their para vidya or spiritual
knowledge. And even superior is the
realized knowledge of the Vedic
rsis or saints — that which
is beyond the objective knowledge of
modern science — knowledge of
the eternal realm of sat, cit ananda,
eternality, blissfullness and full knowledge.
But that is another presentation.
Scientific Verification of Vedic
Knowledge is available as a more extensive
video from DevaVision
Video Documentaries or Amazon.com as well as a PDF chapter in Science of the Sacred. It is also available on uTube.