Indian Genius: ‘Decimal’ and ‘Place Value’ – Used in Math and Language, Both!


By: Shreepal Singh

Sanskrit is an ancient language – really very ancient one. It is regarded as the mother of all the so-called ‘Family of Indo-European languages’. Which are these European and Indian languages today?

Almost all the languages of Europe are included in this family. All these languages have some surviving traces of their Mother Language – Sanskrit or Proto (the original) Sanskrit– still available in them. The abysmally low amount of these traces available in these languages indicate that none of the European languages could preserve their mother language as its body part.

But it is not so with the Indian part of this family. Which are the languages of the Indian part of this family? Almost all the modern Indian languages are included in this family. While the European languages have these little traces in some of their words only in the form of phonetic similarity with Sanskrit words, in the case of Indian languages it is not so.

In the Indian languages still a large number of words are used in their either pure or impure Sanskrit forms. Apparently these Indian languages are the descendants of the Sanskrit, founded on Sanskrit roots with some distortion. However, there is one exception in this descent: None of these Indian languages uses the Sanskrit grammar. In the resemblance of derivative words, Hindi language is the most notable and widely spoken in India.

‘Decimal’ and ‘Place Value’ in Numbers:

Let us first consider the application of the concepts of ‘Decimal’ and ‘Place Value’ in mathematics since ages – since the very origin of Sanskrit language itself, which is shrouded in the mist of past. We all use the system of ‘Decimal’ in our day today life, without realizing the genius of ancient Indians who invented this system.

We know ‘decimal’, an English word, is derived from the Sanskrit word ‘Dashamlav’ (दशम् लव), where दशम is ‘Ten’ and लव is ‘Positioning or Placement’. दशम लव is the system of ten. Decimal system in mathematics is the incremental gradation of anything from 1 through 9, with an additional number as 0 (Zero). What is the purpose and intent of this incremental gradation? For example, what is the meaning of 1 and 2? It simply means that whatever quantum 1 holds, twice of that quantum is held by 2. Likewise, it goes on increasing always in relation to 1, up to 9 in count. Plainly, numbers 2 through 9 is a comparison with 1. It is a relation of 2 through 9 with 1. Conceptually, number 1 may have in it an amount, a quantity.  Whatever this amount or quantity may be, is immaterial. Numbers 2 through 9 are only a comparison with what number 1 holds. It is a relation, where 1 is the unit.

In Sanskrit language, the scheme of ‘Decimal’ deals with ‘relationship’ only and, incidentally, the scheme therein of alphabets coupled with sounds deals with ‘things’ only. So far as this material world – ney, universe – is concerned, from the human perspective it is only a bundle of things and their relations. Beyond this, there is nothing here. Sanskrit language is so perfect an instrument in the hands of humans that it takes care of their concern of things and these things’ relations with one another. In fact, Sanskrit is the embodiment of human speech and mathametical numbers!

In decimal system, one can go on increasing this gradation comparing 1 with any number up to the infinity and still it will be only a relation with 1 of all those individual numbers up to infinity.  But if you want to record this relationship by using some signs – or numerical script – up to any significantly high number, let alone up to infinity, you would be forced to invent a very large number of symbols in that script – or, at least, using the symbol of 1 as many times as you want to count. We know the difficulty of writing numbers by Romans numerals, which we still use for a few special purposes. It is a crude method of writing numerals. It needs a large number of symbols or, alternatively, large amount of space to put a few numerals!

We all know it.

To circumvent this difficulty, India invented a device ages ago, not only the relational concept of 1 with 2 through 9 but also an additional symbol of 0 (Zero). This 0 also is nothing but again a relation with 1. The purpose and intent of 0 is to compare it with 1. This comparison states that whatever amount or quantity (of anything) this 1 contains in it, this amount or quantity is absent in 0. It is simply a relation of 1 with 0. In the decimal system invented by the genius of ancient Indians, the only material number is 1. Rest of the numbers – up to infinity – are only the individual comparison – relation – with 1. This number 1 is the only definable entity, which could be anything, and all the rest of the numbers are relational with this number 1. You can compare this 1 with any number up to infinity.  The number 1 is a unit.

But how does one record these relational numbers in a script? Here again ancient India excelled in its genius. Its genius invented another use of 0, in addition to its (zero’s) use as a relation with 1. This 0 was utilized to denote a specific place to these numbers 2 through 9. For example, number 2 is not only a relational quantum, that is, 2 is not always twice in amount or value of 1. In relational value, number 2 is always twice the value of number 1 but by assigning a definite place to this 2 in the script with respect to other numbers used there, this 2 changes its value. Depending upon the place assigned to this 2 in a sum, this 2 may be increased or decreased in its relational value with 1.

The particular place assigned to ‘a digit’ in a sum with the aid of ‘0 digit’ is itself a value, which is again a relation with 1. In this scheme of ‘decimal’ system, the only material concepts are: ‘1’ (i.e., a unit to be compared with by any number up to infinity, which is only a relation); ‘0’ as a device (i.e. a device to assign a digit any place in the sum, which again is a relation – increasing or decreasing the value of that digit); and, ‘0’ as a relation (i.e. holding a negative value of 1, which is again a relation with 1). Indeed, it an amazing invention made by the Indian genius!

‘Decimal’ and ‘Place Value’ in Sanskrit Language:

Another wonder of the genius of ancient India is the utilizing these concepts of decimal and place value in the Sanskrit language.

Sanskrit language is written in Devanagari script. In the matters of the descent from the Sanskrit language and the popularity in modern India, Hindi language inherits the legacy of Sanskrit. Hindi is spoken by millions of people in India. Hindi, like Sanskrit, is too written in the Devanagari script. Hindi is recognized as the national language of India by the Indian Constitution. Let us consider Sanskrit and how this language utilizes the concepts of ‘decimal’ and ‘place value’ in its alphabets. While considering these aspects of Sanskrit language, to highlight these specialties, the author will compare the position of English language in this respect.

Sanskrit alphabets have classes and categories. The classes are: क च ट त प and the alphabets of conjunct-ed voice. The categories of the former class of alphabets are: Soft, Hard and Swift. The Soft category, and followed by the Hard category, of these classes of alphabets are:

Soft: क Hard: ख

Soft: ग Hard: घ  (Next note of sound in musical ascendance of क and ग ): ङ
Soft: च Hard: छ
Soft: ज Hard: झ (Next note of sound in musical ascendance of च and ज ): ञ
Soft: ट Hard: ठ
Soft: ड Hard: ढ  (Next note of sound in musical ascendance of ट and ड ): ण
Soft: त Hard: थ
Soft: द Hard: ध
Soft: प Hard: फ

Soft: ब Hard: भ

The Swift category of alphabets is made by making them ‘Half’ for sounding them swift when written in conjunction with the next following alphabet, like this: ग्वाल, कथ्था, मक्खन, चमच्च, क्लास, ख्याल, पत्थर; This is the way of Sanskrit to make the sound of an alphabet Swift. But it is made possible by writing an alphabet ‘half’ and then reading it in ‘conjunction’ with the next following alphabet. But if there is an alphabet that needs to sound swift but not in conjunction with any other alphabet but independently, how do you do it? For this ‘halant’ symbol is used, like क् ; ह् ; etc.

The class of alphabets of the conjuncted voice are: क्ष ॠ त्र ज्ञ श्र and they respectively pronounced as in:  क्षत्रप ॠषि त्राटक ज्ञानी श्रीमान .

In addition to these divisions, this language creates fine nuance to the sound of र by adding it as a sound or ‘Matra’ above, below or with an alphabet, like this: वर्तमान, पृथ्वी, प्रयोग, वृक्ष, कर्म, प्रथम;

The genius of ancient Indians, who crafted Sanskrit language, lies, firstly, in the fact that there is a certain relation of frequency (or pitch) of sound contained in each alphabet of these classes and its categories to the next following alphabet. For example, a) क has frequency or pitch relationship with ख b) क has again a relation with ग c) By finding the pitch relation with क and ग one can assess the pitch of the last alphabet of this class, that is, ङ . The same holds true for all the other classes and categories, viz.: च छ, ज झ  and ञ; ट ठ, ड ढ and ण; त थ, द ध; प फ, ब भ;

Incidentally, this property of phonetically two classes of Sanskrit alphabets can be exploited in computer compilation program by assigning one extra digit to the Soft class or Hard class.

In English language, there is no knowledge of such difference of the ‘Soft’, ‘Hard’ and ‘Swift’ categories of its alphabets. Also, in English there is no awareness of the ascendance of the musical notes in the sequence of its alphabets. For example, a, b, c, d, e, f etc. have neither pitch connection and difference nor any sense of ascendance of sound. In this language, these alphabets look unconnected, at random and crude in sound.

In fact, all the fine nuiences of different sounds written in Sanskrit alphabets cannot be accurately written in English language. For example, b of English is ब of Sanskrit; but English has no alphabet भ of Sanskrit (which is Sanskrit’s ‘Hard’ category of ‘ब ‘). English has to somehow make do this deficiency by joining b and h like ‘bh’. Or, t of English is ट  of Sanskrit but English has no alphabet ठ of Sanskrit (which is Sanskrit’s ‘Hard’ category of ‘ट’) and English has to somehow make do this deficiency by joining t and h like: ‘th’ etc. But unfortunately for English, if ठ of Sanskrit is written as ‘th’, then there is no way of writing Sanskrit’s थ (Hard of  त), as it would again be written in English as ‘th’. In fact, English’s ‘th’ is neither ‘ठ’ nor ‘थ’ of Sanskrit. Likewise, there is no sense of difference of ‘sound nuance’ in English language of Sanskrit alphabets: ख, घ, ङ, छ, झ, ञ, ढ, ण, ध, श, ष, स, अः, अं, अः, ऋ, क्ष, ज्ञ, त्र, श्र, ॠ etc.  and absolutely no way to accurately write them.

In Sanskrit language, there is a difference in pronouncing पृथ्वी, प्रयोग and कर्म, in all of which र (or R) is used, but English cannot make out this fine difference of the pitch of sound.

In addition to these alphabets of Sanskrit, this language has ‘Short’ and ‘Long’ sounds or vowels.

The ‘Short’ sounding vowels are: अ इ उ ए ओ अं

The ‘Long’ counterpart of these ‘Long’ vowels are: आ ई ऊ ऐ औ अः

These ‘Short’ and ‘Long’ sounding vowels can be used in two ways: Firstly, as independent alphabets. Secondly, for giving a particular sound to ‘Soft’ and ‘Hard’ alphabets.

However, the sound of अ by default is already integrated with each of the alphabets. Thus, for example, ट is  ट +  अ;  ल is ल + अ; etc. This addition of  अ  to every alphabet by default gives them the stability and depth of sound and provides a word made out of these alphabets a sonorous or musical tone. To add the tonal effect of ’emphasis’ to an alphabet, the sound of vowel  अः is put to the front of an alphabet, like चः कः नः; etc.

The genius of ancient Indians, while crafting Sanskrit, lies, secondly, in the fact that all the sound vowels available in Devanagari script are added by utilizing the space available above, below, back and front of these alphabets while hanging with their head from the top of limiting straight line. In Sanskrit, alphabets are not written by putting them one after another in a row, as is done in English. For utilizing the available space above, below, back and front of an alphabet, alphabets in Devanagari script are written like ‘hanging down at their head’ from a top straight line. Every alphabet, as a rule, has to be written below this line. The space above this line is reserved for adding a ‘Sound’ or ‘Matra’ to the alphabet hanging just at that point below the line.

Thus, for example, the sound of इ  is added to the alphabet क by going above the limiting line – just above this क – to make it look like, कि or to add another sound of उ by going just below the limiting line, like: कु

All the sounds are added to the alphabet: like प – प पा पि पी पु पू पं पो पौ पे पै; like त – त ता ति ती तु तू तं तो तौ ते तै; etc.

The advantage of this scheme is that, in Sanskrit language employing Devanagari script, one can write and pronounce any alphabet, word or sentence of any language of the world with the mathematical accuracy. But the reverse of this not true. There is perhaps no language in the world, except the Sanskrit language, that can accurately write and pronounce all the possible sounds of alphabets, words or sentences so accurately.

For example, in Sanskrit one can accurately write and pronounce: रावण; तट; तत् सत;  त्रोटक; षौडष; सिहं, शीस, सीसा, शशिकला etc. But in English there is no way to accurately write or pronounce these words. In English these words would be written like this: Ravana, tat, tat sat, trotak, shodash, singh, sheesh, seesa, shashikala, which in Sanskrit would be read as रावणा, टट, टरोटक, शोडाश, सिघं, शीश, सीसा, शाशिकाला etc. (which words have meanings different from their original Sanskrit counterparts!)

Sanskrit language is mathematically accurate and precise in its scheme of the arrangement of these alphabets. This accuracy and precision of the Sanskrit’s scheme of arranging alphabets contributed to the discovery of the Periodic Table of Elements by Mendeleev. In making his discovery of the Periodic Table of Elements Mendeleev was inspired by the arrangement of alphabets in Sanskrit.

Sanskrit Language is Music:
 

Sanskrit is a music producing language. It has everything to do with ‘दशम लव’ or the number 10. In this language there are only 10 alphabets each in its two categories, viz, soft and hard. The alphabets in soft category, as stated above, are  क ग च ज ट ड त द प and ब. Each one of these 10 alphabets in Soft category has its equivalent in the Hard category, thus adding 10 more alphabets. These 10 hard counterparts of their Soft cousin are: ख घ छ झ ठ ढ थ ध फ and भ.

Now, there are 10 more alphabets that have no Soft or Hard categories. These are:  न म य र ल व श ष स and ह. Thus, in all there are 10 basic alphabets in the Soft category plus 10 as their counter part in the Hard category and 10 more alphabets without category. In all they become 30 in number.

Apart from these alphabets, as stated above, Sanskrit language has 5 vowels of Short sound and 5 vowels of Long sound: अ इ उ ए ओ (of the Short sound); आ ई ऊ ऐ औ (of the Long sound). Apart from these, there are 2 more sounds or vowels, which have no Short and Long forms, viz.: अं अः . When these Short or Long sounds are added to the Soft or the Hard alphabets, they produce a peculiarly accentuated kind of sound for every Sanskrit word. In addition to the joining of these sounds to Soft and Hard alphabets, these sound are also used as independent alphabets.

The tone, nuance and sound vibration of every alphabet and word of the Sanskrit language is so precise that learning and speaking this language is the best speech therapy.

The wonderful thing that one finds in this language is that, when spoken, these notes of sounds embedded in Sanskrit words and sentences produce a rhythmic sound or music, apart from the meaning that these words – producing such music – convey.

What is a musical sound? A strongly regular waveform of any sound is a musical sound. The pitch of a sound is determined by the frequency of the vibration of that sound.

If one is able to recite the Sanskrit prose or poem accurately, it is a music. Now, music creates a positive impact on human mind. The musical impact of Sanskrit speaking nourishes the human brain and enhances its memory retention power.

Sample of Sanskrit speaking:

Sample 1:

Sample 2:

Sample 3:

It has been found that if Sanskrit text – prose or poem in Slokas – is spoken regularly by a person for a sufficiently long period, it produces a change in the biological structure of the brain of that person. A neuroscience researcher conducting experiment on the effect of Sanskrit speaking on the human brain has found that regular Sanskrit speaking enhances one’s memory and the concerned part of the human brain is biologically changes its shape by increasing its area.

This research paper is published in the Scientific American HERE.

Also have a look at this article on this subject HERE.

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Sanskrit, Dravids, Tamils and South East Asia: No scope for ‘Divisive Agenda’


By: Dr. Nellutla Naveen Chandra

[This write-up by Dr. Nellutla Naveen Chandra is part of one of his several emails, which he sent to one Tamil friend (whose name is being withheld) who had strong thoughts ingrained in his mind of a divided India along the lines of South and North; Dravida and Arya; Tamil and Hindus; Dalit and so-called Upper Castes etc. We are reproducing it here as an article for the general public awareness and as an answer to the artificially bolstered agenda of vested interests to divide India along such fictitious claims.]

Through a good Tamil friend of mine I came to learn about Sangam Literature. This ancient Tamil literature is a rich source on society, intellectual activity, spirituality, literature and sciences and it can be broadly divided into two categories- Puram, external pertaining to nature and Akam, internal pertaining to personal relations.

There are 18 Sangam books translated by Vaidehi Herbert of Hawaii, USA who dates them from 3rd century BCE to 3rd century CE, pre-Pallava.  In the opinion of some of my Tamil friends conveyed to me personally part of Sangam is at least 5000 years old. Vaidehi describes this first Tamil Literature as secular though several Hindu passages are found in them. The latter unsecular Jain, Buddhist, Saivait and Vishnavait literature drew inspiration from Sangam.

The word itself is modified Sanskrit word “Sangham”, probably taken from Buddhist lore especially the norm “Sangham saranam gacchaami”.

This rich source of history contains many references to Mahabharata and Ramayana characters, Tamil Kings (Cholas, Pandyas and Cheras) and their rule, conquests and achievements. It describes a society based on Vedic concepts particularly the Four Purusharthas namely dharma, artha, kaama and moksha and four varnas also of Vedic origins. The morals, customs, social norms, administrative structure, temple life etc. all conform to Vedic culture. The very number of 18 volumes reminds us of 18 Parvas in Mahabharata and 18 chapters in Bhagavad-Gita and 108 Upanishads.

Love stories in Purananuru, one of the volumes, remind us of the great stories narrated in Mahabharata such as Nalopakhyaanam, stories narrated by great Sanskrit poets like Bhasa, Kalidasa, Sudraka, Bhartrihari and others.

It is safe to say that the word “Dravida” is not mentioned as a different race anywhere in Sangam literature. The word Aryan was used as a geographical reference such as “northern people.” The same word was also used to describe a different literature like Aryan Literature.

A later poet Banabhatta who lived in 7th century CE refers to “Dravida” in his novel Kadambari (first novel that was ever written anywhere in the world) also in the context as “a man from south”.

The original Tamil culture was essentially Vedic culture as explained in the book, “Tamil Nadu, The Land of Vedas” written by Dr. R. Nagasamy only this year. Vedic features of Sangam are explained by Rangasamy – see pages 24-29 for verse 166 of Purananuru and pages 29- 39 for verse 18 of Purananuru. Poem 166 points to the immense faith the ancient Tamil society had for Brahmins as leaders among the men of knowledge. The poem 18 is just a translation of Taittiriya Upanishad Brguvalli, perhaps the first of its kind, for example Sanskrit Upanishad annam anne pratishtitham is rendered into Tamil as unti mutarre unavin pintam.

In the same book, we find that –from the very beginning of ancient times, Tamilnadu was the land of Vedic traditions in every field of life – kings, merchants, cultivators, brahmins, hunters, hill tribes, fishermen, chiefs and soldiers, cowherds, artists, musicians, dancers (page 1, Introduction). This book by Rangasamy is an essential reading for all students of nonexistent Arya-Dravida divide concocted by the Colonial Power in their divide and rule policy.

Read this passage in the verse 17 of Purananuru: “From southern Kumari to the mountains in the north, from the oceans on the east to those on the west, the hills, the mountains, and the forests and the land, sing your praises in unison! You are heir to those who ruled this entire world as their bright wheels rolled sweetly!”

This is the Vedic description of Bharata Varhsa accepted by the poets who wrote Tamil Sangam Literature. This is the legacy of all Tamils in as much as it is the legacy of all Kashmiris. Where else will you find evidence of Bharat even though American Orientalists don’t accept this truth?

The contacts made with Southeast Asia by Indian Kings probably started with Ashoka who sent his daughter Sanghamitta and son Mahinda to Sinhala (the present Sri Lanka) at the request of the King Devanampiya Tissa (250 BCE – 210 BCE) for propagation of Buddhism. Look at the Pali names equivalent to Sanskrit words Sanghamitra, Mahindra and Devanampriya Darshan strongly suggesting the language they used was not Sanskrit.

Later many Tamil Kings sent navies as far as Cambodia where is located the world’s largest Hindu Temple, Angkor Wat, nay it is the largest religious structure larger than Vatican or Tirupati. You probably know the great Samudra Mathanam sculpture in the Suvarna Bhumi Airport in Bangkok and Garuda Airways of Indonesia and many other vestiges of Hindu contacts with SE Asia.

Saudis wanted Indonesians to remove all references to Hinduism but were flatly refused. A previous President of Indonesia was named Sukarno who explained “My father liked Mahabharata very much and Karna character was his favourite. He named me Sukarno meaning good Karna.” Thus, all through SE Asia, Hindu culture is fondly remembered and cherished suggesting historical amity that could only stem from cultural ties rather than a forceful occupation which would leave hatred and resentment behind.

Tamil Kings throughout the history patronized Vedas, Sanskrit and Brahmins. None of the Indian Kings (north or south) were predators in the same sense as Europeans who brutally installed their religion, languages and culture- the greatest example is India. Tamils Kings did not impose Tamil language or Hinduism on South East Asia. A Tamil friend of mine wistfully says they should have imposed.

The Hindu kings followed the great example of Rama himself as described by Valmiki in the Yuddhakanda of Ramayana. Seeing the wealth of Sinhala, the Vanaras and even Lakshmana wanted to stay there and occupy the land they just conquered. Rama admonished them saying:

अपि स्वर्णमयी लङ्का न मे लक्ष्मण रोचते जननी जन्मभूमिश्च स्वर्गादपि गरीयसी|”

“Lakshmana, even this golden Lanka does not appeal to me, mother and motherland are greater than Swarga itself.” Many people don’t know it was Rama who first said this great line. He installed Ravana’s brother Vibheeshana as the King of Sinhala.

Thus, Indians never used force to impose Sanskrit on SE Asia. Then how did Sanskrit spread? It was first Ramayana itself that was so dear to all people in Myanmar, Indonesia, all the way up to Cambodia. It was cultural  not political. You can’t name a Tamil King who used force to spread Sanskrit or Hinduism.

Even today perhaps after 10000 years or more Ramayana is recited all over in the most endearing manner. Then as we saw in the case of President Sukarno, it was Mahabharata as well. Even in Vietnam Hindu symbols such as Ganesh and Hanuman are used in taxis.

In the book Akananuru of Sangam literature stanzas 276,336,376,396 describe Aryans. . In all these references the word is used in the context of geography and not a race.

In Valmiki Ramayana, Sita addresses Rama as “Arayputra” and Mandodari addresses Ravana also as “Aryaputra”. If Ravana was Dravidian why was he called Aryaputra by his wife? Moreover, Rama was black and Ravana, a Brahmin was white. Kaurananidhi the propagandist par excellence does not mention these facts. Rama an Aryan from North India was black and Ravana a Dravidian from South India was white! Can DMK and other division seeking traitors explain this fact?

Who are Dravidas? Among the many sects of Brahmins, Dravidas was and is one. For example, Sreeman Adi Sankara was a Dravida Brahmin. But Sreeman Ramanuja and Sreeman Madhva were not Dravidas. They all came from South India. Does Karunanidhi know this? In Telangana, in Vemulavada region there many Dravidas, all Brahmins. None belongs to a non-Brahmin Varna. Why is that so? By the popular theory, you should find Dravidas in non-Brahmins and not find them at all in Brahmins.

 Brahmins living south of Vindhyas were called Pancha Dravidas and north of Vindhyas were called Pancha Gaudas. Pancha Dravidas were Gurjaras (Gujarati Brahmins), Maharastrikas (Maharashtrian Brahmins), Tailingas (Telugu Brahmins), Karnaticas (Kannada Brahmins) and Dravidas (Tamil and Malayalam Brahmins). Kalhana’s Rajatarangini, Muthu Tambi Pillai’s Abhidana Chintamani and in N. Kathiravar Pillai’s Tamil Moli Akarathi mention this division. This definition of Dravida based strictly on Geography and secondly on Language is a sampradyaya parampara from Bana (8th century), Kalhana (circa 12th century), Muthu Thambi Pillai (18th century) and Kathiraver Pillai (20th century).

When Maxmuller proposed that Aryans invaded India where Dravidians were living, he did not follow up the details in Indian history books, creating two races that never existed (Dravidas became Dravidians). This is not evidence based. When the Marxists proposed Aryans as Brahmins and Dravidians as non-Brahmins, distorting history beyond recognition, they did not take into consideration the historical facts. This is also not evidence based. The idea that Dalits are Dravidians and others are Aryans, is a further distortion of truth. This is also not evidence based.

Two great leaders of Tamilnadu Sreeman Rajagopalachary and Sri Kamaraj Nadar never mentioned Dravidian race as different from Aryan race. It was demagogues like Anna Durai who publicized the idea of difference to get elected.

Sheldon Pollock, Sanskrit, Hinduism, Christianity: and A Reply to Sheldon Pollock


By: Shreepal Singh

Sheldon Pollock is an American Orientalist and is the proponent of a newly invented theory that holds that Hinduism, as we know it today, is an artificial creation, which is not found in the ancient Sanskrit sacred books of India. He says there is no continuation of Hinduism from ancient times to our present times and Hinduism as we know it today is a newly and artificially created entity, which he terms as “Neo-Hinduism”.

He alleges that the foundation of this Neo-Hinduism was laid down by Swami Vivekananda and that the Swami was much influenced by the concepts of Christianity in creating this “Neo-Hinduism.

In order to give his theory a logical foundation, he proposes two things: Firstly, Sanskrit language, in which the Hindu sacred books are written, should be detached from – divested of its – divinity or sacredness; and, Secondly, after so divesting, Sanskrit should be read, understood and interpreted as a linguistic-political tool.

By applying these two theoretical premises in his studies of sacred Sanskrit books of Hinduism, Pollock comes up with his conclusions that Sanskrit was a literary tool of oppression not only of the political nature (by poetical eulogy of the king of the time) but was also oppressive to other vernacular languages of India.

These allegations of Sheldon Pollock have been examined threadbare and replied with great intellectual caliber by Rajiv Malhotra in his book “The Battle For Sanskrit”, which is a must-read for everyone who loves India and Indology.

The first issue is whether scientifically it is justified to divest a sacred book of its divinity or sacredness and to deconstruct the language (Sanskrit) in which that book is written in order to get its real meaning.

Here is an article written by Surya K. on this issue.

Surya K. applies the theory of Sheldon Pollock by simply replacing “Hinduism” with “Christianity” and the “Sacred books of Hinduism” with “ Sacred Bible”

 

By; Surya K.

In his deliberations on Christianity, Mahatma Gandhi wrote in his Autobiography:

I could accept Jesus as a martyr, an embodiment of sacrifice, and a divine teacher, but not as the most perfect man ever born. His death on the Cross was a great example to the world, but that there was anything like a mysterious or miraculous virtue in it my heart could not accept”.

Now, Gandhi can say this as a non-believer. He was not a Christian. But he did not push these views on Christians as “scholarship” the way Pollock is pushing.

Gandhi was not alone. Thomas Jefferson, one of the founding fathers of America, compared miracles in the bible, and hence divinity of Jesus, to dung hill.

In 1813, in a letter to John Adams, Jefferson wrote:

“… We must reduce our volume to the simple evangelists, select, even from them, the very words only of Jesus, paring off the amphibologisms into which they have been led, by forgetting often, or not understanding, what had fallen from him, by giving their own misconceptions as his dicta, and expressing unintelligibly for others what they had not understood themselves. There will be found remaining the most sublime and benevolent code of morals which has ever been offered to man. I have performed this operation for my own use, by cutting verse by verse out of the printed book, and arranging the matter which is evidently his, and which is as easily distinguishable as diamonds in a dunghill.”

Jefferson created for himself a “clean” version of bible called the Jefferson bible from which he stripped all divinity. Again, Jefferson, like Gandhi, did not palm his views off on Christians as actual history.

Would Christians or Muslims accept interpretations of their books by excluding divinity?

After reading the story in the bible, one is invariably struck with the following question:

What did Jesus really accomplish? There are many good – very nice – people who were killed mindlessly in the last two thousand years. Look at Mahatma Gandhi. He fought for a well-defined cause, made great strides towards that cause using only peaceful means, and finally died during the process but leaving behind a success story. In contrast, Jesus achieved no improvement to the society and died in vain. Gandhi successfully used civil-disobedience to bring justice to millions of his people. Perhaps, Jesus could have had the same effectiveness if he had used it.

This is not a new thought. Speaking on Mahatma Gandhi’s death, Nobel prize nominee and legendary missionary E. Stanley Jones described Mahatma Gandhi as “the greatest tragedy since the Son of God died on the cross.”

Theodore Beza wrote in his work the Anti-Bellius in 1554:

There is one way that leads to God, namely, Christ; and one way that leads to Christ, namely, faith; and this faith includes all those dogmas … If Christ is not true God, coeternal and consubstantial with the Father, how is He our Savior? How is He our sanctifier? How is He victor over sin, death, and the devil? Unless He is true man, save for sin, how is He our mediator?”

If we take away divinity from Jesus, we are left with a Jesus who did not do any miracles (just a human so they must all be magic tricks). His speeches no longer qualify as moral teachings but political anti-establishment speeches. He was crucified then as one of many others who were crucified by Romans. Jesus then lived the life of a trouble-maker who died without achieving anything. Without divinity, all that Jesus has going for him is that he is a nice guy who accomplished nothing for his people and died in vain.

This basic argument was not lost on Christian thinkers.

C.S. Lewis, one of the most celebrated Christian apologists, says that if we do not accept Jesus as God, then we have to either consider him a fool, a madman, or a devil.

C.S. Lewis, Mere Christianity, (New York: MacMillan, 1943), pages 55-56

I am trying to prevent anyone saying the really foolish thing that people often say about Him: “I’m ready to accept Jesus as a great moral teacher, but I don’t accept His claim to be God.” That is the one thing we must not say. A man who was merely a man and said the sort of things Jesus said would not be a great moral teacherHe would either be a lunatic–on the level with the man who says he is a poached egg–or else he would be the Devil of Hell. You must make your choice. Either this man was, and is, the Son of God: or else a madman or something worse. You can shut him up for a fool, you can spit at him and kill him as a demon; or you can fall at his feet and call him Lord and God. But let us not come with any patronising nonsense about his being a great human teacher. He has not left that open to us. He did not intend to.

We are faced, then, with a frightening alternative. This man we are talking about either was (and is) just what He said or else a lunatic, or something worse.. I have to accept the view that He was and is God.

Without Divinity, Christianity is Meaningless Drive

How does Jesus lead humanity to salvation?

In his letter to th Church of Corinth, Paul writes:

Now, brothers and sisters, I want you to remember the Good News I told you. You received that Good News message, and you continue to base your life on it. That Good News, the message you heard from me, is God’s way to save you. But you must continue believing it. If you don’t, you believed for nothing. I gave you the message that I received. I told you the most important truths: that Christ died for our sins, as the Scriptures say;  1 Corinthians 15:1-

This is a quote from the Bible.

Paul is saying in no uncertain terms that, for Jesus to bring salvation to Christians, Christians have to believe that Jesus died to atone for the Original Sin of humanity.  If Jesus were just another human being, with no divinity, such a belief would be meaningless drivel.  Jesus had to have had divine origin fo the belief to be meaningful.  If he not he is not the Lord, Jesus is either a liar (he outright lied about his miracles) or a lunatic (imagined self-aggrandizement).

Divinity is crucial for Christianity to find honorable meaning in the bible and in the life of Jesus.  In fact, belief in divine origin of Jesus is so critical that all major Christian denominations require divine origin of Jesus.  Every major Christian denomation has codified the core belief of divinity of Jesus as part of their version of “Nicene Creed”, a statement(the  of belief that all members of that Christian denominations have to hold.


Divinity of Jesus is a core belief, an essential axiom, for Christians.  It is foolish for a Christian to accept an argument based on the supposition that Jesus is merely human with no divinity.  It is up to Christians to say what the axioms or the statement of their beliefs are and insist on only engaging in arguments that presuppose beliefs of divinity of Jesus. (Why is it a presupposition and not history?  Divinity is beyond common human experience and cannot be recognized as history even though history-centric religions claim history as confirmation for their beliefs.  Even if we grant that Jesus was born of a virgin mother, performed miracles, died on the cross and resurrected, it still does not follow that he is son of God.  Worse, one cannot take those human-observable events to be true.)

Just as Christians insist in acceptance of divinity as a presupposition for any valid interpretation of the Bible, so should Hindus insist on acceptance of divinity as a presupposition for any valid interpretations of Sanskrit Hindu sacred works.

By: Unknown

Christianity ….One Christ, One Bible Religion…

But the Latin Catholic will not enter Syrian Catholic Church.

These two will not enter Marthoma Church .

These three will not enter Pentecost Church .

These four will not enter Salvation Army Church.

These five will no enter Seventh Day Adventist Church .

These six will not enter Orthodox Church.

These seven will not enter Jacobite church.

This way there are 146 castes alone for Christianity.

Each will never share their churches with fellow Christians!

One Christ, One Bible, One Jehova???

Now Muslims..! One Allah, One Quran, One Nabi….! Great unity?

Among Muslims, Shia and Sunni hate and kill each other in all Muslim countries.

The religious riots in most Muslim countries is always between these two sects.

The Shia will not go to Sunni Mosque.

These two will not go to Ahamadiya Mosque.

These three will not go to Sufi Mosque.

These four will not go to Mujahiddin mosque.

This way there are 13 castes in Muslims.

Killing/bombing/conquering/ massacaring/… each other!

American attack on Iraq was fully supported by all Muslim countries surrounding Iraq !

One Allah, One Quran, One Nabi….????

Hindus –

They have 1,280 Religious Books, 10,000 Commentaries, more than one lakh sub-commentaries for these foundation books, innumerable presentations of one God, variety of Aacharyas, thousands of Rishies, hundreds of languages.

Still they all go to All TEMPLES and they are peaceful and tolerant and seek unity with others by inviting them to worship with them whatever God they wish to pray for!

Hindus never fought one another for the last ten thousand years in the name of religion.

This only confirms Hinduism is not a religion. It is a way of life.

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