Ancient Indians on (Medical) Science, Tech., Eco., Politics

Ancient India was a center of attraction for the whole world. The more we delve into world history, the more we understand our contributions in almost every division of every prevalent topic.

I remember the freedom fighter Bhagat Singh objecting to a British court verdict that India was a poor and illiterate country. He goes on to say that even before the rest of the world did not know how to converse, the residents of this nation were narrating Ramayana and writing treatises on Srimad Bhagavadgita. Such rich was the culture and so educated were the people here. Let us find out more about this with the help of some factual collections that I had collected at a Sanskrit Fair.

While we read the lists, it is clear that all of them have derived from Sanskrit. But that does not definitely mean that there are no contributions from other languages. As I told these are what I have found in a Sanskrit fair. It just does not matter what civilization or language is the oldest. What matters more is how civilized civilization was and how logical and brilliant a language and its users were. What knowledge did the sources of a language enlighten its users? Let us know more and more answers to such question moving ahead in our article.

Metallurgy

The essence of civilization is hidden in the way how the civilized people of the civilization made use of their metals. This has been predominantly the source of knowledge for modern metallurgy. Though modern metallurgy has seen exponential growth, which is because of the industrial revolution. In spite of all this, the ancient metallurgy has been the seed of the modern-day metallurgy. 

Metallurgy has progressed from easily smeltable ores’ extraction to not so easily smeltable extraction of ores. The earliest use of metals has been mentioned with the Sanskrit verses related to the extraction hows. The commonly used antiquity metals are:

  • Gold
  • Silver
  • Brass
  • Bronze
  • Steel

that we will be covering in the coming sections.

Source of Gold

रसजम् क्षेत्रजम् चैव लोहसन्करजम् तथा ।
त्रिविधन् जायते हेम चतुर्थम् नोपलभ्यते ॥

– Rasarvanavam – 7.99

Gold is extracted from the following three raw materials:

1Chemicals
2Mines
3Mixture of metals

Quality of Brass

गुर्वी मृद्वी च पीताभा सारन्गी ताडनक्षमा । सुस्निग्धा मसूणान्गी च रीतिरेतादूशी शुभा ॥
पाण्डुपीता खरा रुक्षा बर्बरा ताडनाक्षमा । पूतिगंधा तथा लघ्वी रीतिर्नैष्टा रसादिषु ॥

Rasaratnasamucchaya – 5.195.196

This shloka strives hard to make us understand the features of brass and its quality. Moreover, it differentiates the superior quality from its inferior counterpart.

Superior Quality Brass

1Heavy
2Soft
3With beautiful yellow color
4Unbreakable on hammering
5Slim

Inferior Quality Brass

1Whitish yellow
2Dirty
3Breakable on hammering
4Rough
5Has foul smell
6Light in weight
7Should not be used in chemical process

Bronze

अष्टभागेन ताम्रेण द्विभाग कुटिलेन च ।
विद्रुतेन भवेत् कांस्यं तत्सौराष्ट्रभवम् शुभम् ॥

Rasaratnasamucchaya – 5.204 (900 AD)

Extracting Bronze is a process that consists of mixing of eight parts of copper and two parts of tin together. This was then practiced more in Saurashtra, which is currently a part of Gujarat, west of India.

Iron and Steel

There are several wonders done across the country in the form of Dhwaja Stambha in the temples. They are many such erections of Stambhas that date back to many centuries. Let us consider one such pillar below that has stood times. 

Iron Pillar in Delhi

Probable Date400 AD
Height7.39 mts. (24′ 3″)
DiameterTop – 30.60 cms. (12.05″)
 Bottom – 41.65 cms (16.4″)
Weight6 tons

Chemical Composition:

Fe0.008%
C0.046%
Si0.006%
S0.114%
MnNil

Without a doubt, the pillar is existing for the past 1600 years, with no indications of any rust or decay. With all the knowledge we had about Iron furnaces, Britishers preferred Indian iron for manufacturing steel of good quality.

Kosthi Yantra

षोडशांगुलविस्तीर्णो हस्तमात्रायतम् समम्
धातुसत्वनिपातार्थे कोष्ठीयन्त्रमिति स्मृतं ॥
परिपूर्णट्टदान्गारैरधोवातेन कोष्ठके
मात्रया ज्वालमार्गेण ज्वालयेच्च हितशनम् ॥

– Rasasamucchya 9-43-12th Century

There is also a mention about the kind of furnace used at the time when metals were extracted flawlessly that withstood times. The description of the furnace goes on as in the above shloka:

The furnace has the following measurements:

Width16 Cubits
Length18 Inches
Height18 Inches

Uniform on all sides. This device is called Koshti Yantram and is used for extracting pure metal content out of ores and minerals. 

Wootz steel

Among the most outstanding metallurgical achievements of antiquity, the production of Wootz Steel is the most dazzling one. Wootz is high carbon steel. It was produced in India from the first quarter of the first millennium BC until 1900 AD. 

This was the first crucible steel made in the world and was famous all over the middle east. Our ironsmiths learned the secret of incorporating carbon in iron to steel, they brought a technological revolution. 

  • Steel tools can cut 
  • Bronze
  • Gold
  • Stones
  • Gemstones 

Their hard material and their cutting edges continued to be sharp and useful. Steel was also found most useful for making weapons of superior quality. This was the raw material from which the famous Damascus swords were forged. The steel was imported from south India by shrewd Arabian sailors who did not disclose the origin of the material. 

Killing of Metals

There was one more important chemical activity that is often used in ancient texts like Charaka Samhita and Sushruta Samhita. There are many chemical treatises that give us the methods of killing metals. These killed metals were treated as medicines for curing certain ailments.

The most used metal was mercury for its poisonous qualities. Once killed, it could be used as a medicine. There were even procedures to confirm if such metals were killed or still active. 

काशि सतुवरी सिन्धुटन्कणक्शारसम्युतः । पूर्वाभिषवयोगेन सूतकश्चरति क्शणात् ॥

– Rasarnava 11-27

The following ingredients were used to kill metals like mercury:

  • Green vitriol
  • Alum
  • Salt
  • Borax

All of this mixed with the aforesaid vegetable drugs (mentioned in the previous verses, not listed here) kills mercury on an immediate basis in the shape of Clonmel.

Size of an Atom

One of the most noteworthy Indian physical concepts is atomism. Different schools of thought like Vaisheshika, Jain, and Bauddha have expounded their atomic concepts. The word used for the atom as anu or paramanu. They discussed kinds of atoms, their qualities, and combinations. Ancient Indians had also given an approximation for the size of the atom. 

They pictured that atoms are invisible to the naked eye.

एषोणु रात्मा चेतसा वेदितव्यः ॥

– Mundakopanishat 3-1-9

Mundokopanishat (even before 1500 BC) states that atomic size can only be visualized and cannot be seen by the naked eyes. 

Shwetaswataropanishat (even before 1500 BC) measured the exact size of an atom through the following shloka. 

बालाग्रशतभागस्य शतधा कल्पितस्य च ।
भोगो जीवः स विज्ञेयः स चानन्त्याय कल्पते ॥

– Shwetaswataropanishat 5.9

Botany

Tridoshas of Trees

नराणामिव वृक्षाणां वातापित्तकफाद्गदाः ।
सम्भवन्ति निरुप्यातः कुर्यात्तद्दोषनाशनम् ॥

Upavana Vinoda – 175
13th century AD

The rest of the world treated trees like a non-living thing until our very own Jagadish Chandra Bose brought to notice that plants and trees are living beings, to the whole world. 

The above shloka is a clear indication that for a very long time now we had the understanding of trees better than any other place in the world, even today. Trees are compared to us human beings in a way that they possess the same qualities in their bodies, what we do. 

The three vitiations, Vaata, Pitta and Kapha are a part of the plants just like how they are a part of human beings. The trees should be diagnosed the right way and have to be cured. 

Do Trees See, Smell, Hear and Touch

Although it is not enough, the surprises about our forefathers have been aplenty. They had their own set of methods to test something. By the same means, they had found out the following that is mentioned in Mahabharata Shantiparva:

Trees can See

वल्ली वेष्टयते वृक्षं सर्वतश्चैव गच्छति ।
नाप्यदृष्टेश्च मार्गोस्ति तस्मात् पश्चन्ति पादपाः ॥

When creepers move on tree trunks, covering all around the tree and the path will make it so evident that they have got sight and that they can see. These aspects were from ancient India why modern science is yet to ascertain.

Trees respond to Smell

पुण्यापुन्यैस्तथा गन्धैर्धूपैश्च विविधैरपि |
आरोगाः पुष्पिताः सन्ति तस्माज्जिघ्रन्ति पादपाः ||

When let in the company of incense and smoke (eg. gases) the trees or plants will turn out to be free from diseases. Moreover, it also results in fructifying or produces more flowers, indicating a response to smell.

Trees can Hear

वाय्वग्न्यानि निष्पेषैः फल पुष्पम् विशीर्यते ।
श्रोत्रेण गृह्यते शब्दस्तेन शृण्वन्ति पादपाः ॥

Trees can Hear

By the excess sound or fire that is produced before a plant or a tree, there is a negative effect on the fruits and flowers. This implies that the trees can hear though they do not have ears. This has been proven even in modern science.

Trees sense Touch

ऊष्मतो म्लायते वर्णम् त्वक्फलम् पुष्पमेव वा ।
म्लायते शीर्यते चापि स्पर्शस्तेनात्र विद्यते ॥

There are the following impacts that are visually visible due to:

Excess heat – barks, leaves, and flowers get discolored and faded, finally perish

This is a reaction to the heat, proving that trees can sense touch. 

Osmosis

वक्त्रेणोत्पलनालेन यथोर्ध्वम् जलमाददेत्
तथा पवनसम्युक्तः पादैः पिबति पादपः ॥

– Mahabharata, Shantiparva 184.16

Osmosis, the well-known process that the plants adhere with respect to water is written in Mahabharat. The shloka says:

The way we consume water from the mouth (by suction) using a lotus stalk (something like a straw), plants endowed with air pressure drinks with its feet (referring to roots) in the same way.

Due to the rapid evaporation of water through the leaves during transpiration, there is a tension that is created in the xylem of the root and transmitted, enabling the water to cross the cell walls and rise upwards. 

Grafting

अजातशाखान् शिशिरे जातशाखान् हिमागमे
वर्षागमे च सुस्कन्धान् यथा दिक्स्थान् प्ररोपयेत् ॥

– Brihatsamhita 55-6
505 AD

Well, we all know that Grafting is the act of placing the stem of one plant on another, each of them touching the other to continue their growth together. Further to this, the knowledge we had then states the following about the grafting process based on seasons.

Spring season (Feb – Mar)Grafting should be done to those plants that have not yet got branches
Winter season (Dec – Jan)Graft those plants that have got their branches
The rainy season (Aug – Sep) Plants or trees with large branches have to be grafted

While grafting at the rainy season, the direction of the large branches has to be taken care of and kept up. 

This shloka gives us a brief description of taking care of two plants together. 

Plants have Life

Indians were very well aware much before the westerns that plants too had life. A comparison is made between plants and animals in terms of the development of the senses. Animals are said to be Vyakta Chetana (Senses clearly manifested or exposed senses) while plants are Avyakta Chetana or Supta Chetana (improperly manifested senses or hidden senses). This is noted in Udayana’s Kiranavali of 10th century AD. 

वृक्षादयः प्रतिनियत भाक्त्रधिष्ठिताः
जीवन मरण स्वप्न जागरण रोगभेषजप्रयोगस
जाती वानुविध्या नुकूला पगमप्रतिकूलापगमादिभ्यः ।
प्रसिद्धशरीरवत् ।

– Udayana’s Kiranavali
10th century AD

Plants constantly manifest the phenomena of :

  • living
  • death
  • dreams
  • waking
  • susceptibility to diseases
  • drugging
  • the movement towards what is favorable
  • repulsion from what is unfavorable as if these are living bodies

This botanical information comprises the recognition of plants as a living organism made up of five fundamental principles, and endowed with consciousness. 

Comparison of Man and Tree

Absorption of Water by Plants

Absorption of water by the roots and the ascent of sap in the plants due to suction force were known to the ancient Indians. It is described in the Shanti Parva of Mahabharata around 400 BC.

वक्त्रेणोत्पलनालेन यथोर्ध्वम् जलमाददेत् ।
तथा पवनसम्युक्तः पादैः पिबति पादपः ॥

“Just as water may be drawn up by sucking the Lotus petiole applied to the mouth, so also plants drink water with the help of the air”. 

The same theory in modern days is attributed to Dickson and Kolly who proposed this in 1894, which is of a very recent origin.

Medicine

Intestinal Surgery

बद्धगुदे परिस्राविणि च स्निग्धस्विन्नस्याभ्यक्तस्याधो
नाभेर्वामस्चतुरन्गुलमपहाय रोमराज्या उदरम् पाटयित्वा
चतुरन्गुल-प्रमाणमान्त्राणि निष्कृत्य निरीक्श्य​
बद्धगुदस्यान्त्रप्रतिरोधकरश्मानम् बालम् वापोह्य मलजातम् वा
ततो मधुसर्पिभ्यामभ्यज्यान्त्राणि यथास्थानम् स्थापयित्वा बाह्यम्
व्रणमुदरस्य सीव्येत् ।

– Sushruta Samhita 4-7
500 BC

Let us now learn from our ancestors on how intestinal surgeries were carried out. If we think modern surgeries are advanced, it’s highly likely that we have forgotten our own history. 

If there is a blockage in the large intestine or urinary tract, the following were followed:

  1. The patient had to go through a set of the below actions as a prerequisite:
    1. Fermentation
    2. Sweating
    3. Messaging
  2. After properly following the previous steps, an incision of four-finger-wide below the naval that stretches down from the naval has to be made
  3. The intestine has to be extracted from the incision made and examined
  4. Removal of the following blocking materials from the intestine like:
    1. Stone
    2. Hair
    3. Facial matter
  5. Coat the cleaned intestine using the following substances
    1. Honey
    2. Butter
  6. Place the coated and cleaned intestine into its place
  7. Stitch the external wound of the stomach

Embryology

गर्भस्य चत्वारि चतुर्विधानि
भूतानि मातापितृसम्भवानि ।|
आहारजन्यात्मकृतानि चैव​
सर्वस्य सर्वाणि भवन्ति देहे ॥

– Charakasamhita 2.26

A beautiful shloka that speaks about what all an embryo in the mother’s womb carries. It has four components that it has derived from:

  1. The mother
  2. The father
  3. Food that it consumes through the mother
  4. What it develops by itself

Kidney Stone Removal

ततः सव्ये पाश्वेम् सेवनीम् यवमात्रेण​
मुक्त्वावचारयेच्छस्त्रश्मरीप्रमाणम् दक्शिणतोवा
क्रियासौकर्यहेतोरित्येके, यथा सा न भिद्यते चूर्ण्यते वा तथा
प्रयतेत, चूर्णमल्पमप्यवस्थितम् हि पुनः परिवृद्धिमेति,
तस्मात् समस्तामग्रवक्त्रेणाददीत ।

– Sushruta Samhita
500 BC

It would be a pleasant surprise to know that the problem of kidney stones dates back to 500 BC. Yes, Sushruta Samhita contains details on how to remove the stones from kidney, which follows an operation.

The needle should be handled in such a way that it should do either of the two. 

  1. A grain of space has to be left on the left side or
  2. A bladder stone size space can be left on the right side

Utmost care has to be taken while performing this surgery as the bladder or kidney stone should not be powdered. If it is powdered it is hard to clean or remove it completely and even a small quantity of particle left inside would mean in the growth of it. A curved forceps come in handy to do this job.

Pulse-test

करस्यान्गुष्ठमूले या धमनी जीवसाक्शिणी ।
तच्चेष्टया सुखम् दुःखम् झेयम् कायस्य पन्डितैः ॥

– Nadidarpanam

Even today if you go visit an ayurvedic doctor, they will not ask you questions about your problems. It is through the pulse test they examine the problems and let us know the root causes.

This is observed through testing the life-indicating pulse (called Nadi in Sanskrit), which can be found below the root of the patient’s thumb. This expertise of the doctors is called Pulse Test or Nadi Pareeksha.

Blood Flow

हृदो रसो निस्सरति तस्मादेति च सर्वशः । 
सिराभिर्हृदयं वैति तस्मात्तत्प्रभवाः सिराः ॥

– Bhela Samhita 20.3

The blood flows from the heart to the whole body and back, back and forth. Blood is called in Sanskrit as Rasa, which flows from the heart to all places. Through the veins it again reaches back the heart, repeating the process till life.

Plastic Surgery of Nose

विश्लेषितायास्त्वथ नासिकाया वक्ष्यामि संधानविधिं यथावत् ।
नासाप्रमाणम् पृथिवीरुहाणाम् पत्रम् गृहीत्वा त्ववलम्बितस्य ॥
तेन प्रमाणेन हि गण्डपार्श्वादुत्कृत्य बद्ध्नात्वथ नासिकाग्रम् ।
विलिख्य चाशु प्रतिसन्दधीत तत् साधुबन्धैर्भिषगप्रमत्तः ॥

– Sushruta Samhita 16.27.28

Here Sushruta tells us how exactly plastic surgery of the nose can be done. The method involves the loaning of the disjoint nose wherein the doctor has to follow the following steps. 

  1. Support a nose sized leaf on the forehead
  2. The skin from the cheeks have to be cut to match the size of the leaf
  3. By tracing the profile of the nose on the leaf make sure that this can be used for plastic surgery in the next step
  4. With an appropriate bandage immediately join the skin carefully not allowing delay in cure

Arteries

धमन्यो रक्तवाहिन्यश्चतुर्विम्शतिरीरिताः ।
कुल्याभिरिव केदारास्ताभिर्देहोभिवर्धते ॥

Sangita Ratnakara 2.105

A holistic comparison in the shloka clarifies the importance of both blood and arteries. Sangita Ratnakara, the book on music and dance and dating back to the thirteenth century has a reference to the arteries with a clear number of arteries too. 

The Shloka states that there are twenty-four arteries that carry blood. These carry nutrients along with the blood and make sure that the whole body receives adequate nutrition just like how canals take water to the farms and see to it that it nourishes the plants. 

Eight types of Operations

Sushruta, the first surgeon of mankind describes eight kinds of operations. 

तच्च शस्त्रकर्माष्टविधम् ।
तद्यथा - छेद्यम् भेद्यम् लेख्यम् वेध्यम् एष्यम् आहार्यम् विस्राव्यम् सीव्यमिति ।

They can be listed as following on par with the shloka.

  1. Excision (Chedyam)
  2. Incision (Bhedyam)
  3. Scarification (Lekhyam)
  4. Puncturing (Vedhyam)
  5. Probing (Eshyam)
  6. Extraction (Aharyam)
  7. Draining (Vishraavyam)
  8. Suturing (Sivyam)

Swastika Type – Beast faced Surgical Instruments

Sushruta describes different kinds of surgical instruments (yantras) in 200 AD. The design was based on action. Each instrument was expected to perform. Sushruta observed how animals and birds can be used as devices. The design was based on mechanical leverage and advantage. The yantras were designed to derive similar advantages. 

The cross or the Swastika Yantras are of eighteen-inch long, their two halves are held together by bolt heads that have the shape that of a Nasura (a Lentil Seed). The handles are curved like that of the Ankush (the goad of the elephant) at the base their faces vary, like those of the beasts or birds. 

Swastika type and Beast faces

1Simha Yantra Lion
2Vyaghra YantraTiger
3Vrika YantraWolf
4Tarakshu YantraHyena
5Raksha YantraBear
6Dvipi YantraLeopard
7Marjara YantraCat
8Shrigala YantraJackal
9Mriga YantraDeer

Many of these surgical instruments are used even today.

For example lion forceps, dental hawk, bill forceps, mouse teeth forceps, crocodile forceps, bulldog, volsella or tweezers, bone forceps, and dental forceps, etc.

Ecology

Desalination of Groundwater

अज्जनमुस्तोशिरैः सराजकोशातकामलकचूणः ।
कतकफलसमायुक्तैर्योगः कूपे प्रदातव्ययः ॥
कलुषम् कटुकम् लवणम् विरसम् सलिलम् यदि वाशुभगन्धि भवेत् ।
तदनेन भवत्यमलम् सुरसम् सुसुगन्धि गुणैरपरैश्य यथतम् ॥

Brihatsamhita 54.121, 122

This is not a way to purify using a filter, nor is it treating water using chemicals. The shloka states the way to desalinate groundwater in the dug well using a herbal formula. 

The herbal formula is made using a mixture of the following herbs:

1Anjana
2Mushta
3Ushira
4Rajakosataka
5Amalaka
6Kataka

The above-listed herbs are added into well water making it desalinated. 

By adding the herbs into the well, the following bad qualities of the well water can be made clean, tasty and endowed with good qualities. 

  1. Muddy
  2. Bitter
  3. Salty
  4. Bad in taste
  5. Bad odor

Types of Forests

अकृष्यायां भूमौ पशुभ्यः विवीतानि प्रयच्छेत् । 
प्रदिष्टाभयस्थावरजन्गमानि च ब्राह्मणेभ्यो
ब्रह्म-सोमारण्यानि तपोवनानिच​
तपस्विभ्यो गोरुतपराणि प्रयन्ते ॥
सर्वातिथिमृगप्रयत्ने चान्यमृगवनम् भूमिवशेन मा निवेशयेत् ।|
कृप्यप्रदिष्टनाम् च द्रव्याणाम् एकैकशो वा वनम् निवेशयेत् ।
द्रव्यवनकर्मान्तानटवीश्व द्रव्यवनापाश्रयाः ।
प्रयत्ने हस्तिवनमटव्यारक्श्यम् निवेशयेत् ।

– Arthashastram 2.2

 Types of ForestsDescription
1Vivitam (Trinacvataha)Grassland for Cattle
2BrahmaranyamFor the Brahmins to continue their studies
3SomaranyamFor sacrificial rites or where Soma is grown
4TapovanamMeant for ascetics
5MrigavanamDeer sanctuary
6VamshavanamFor different families of trees like Devadaru
7DravyavanamTo grow raw material for industries
8NagavanamElephant Sanctuary
9PakshivatahBird Sanctuary
10VyalavatahSanctuary for wild animals

Art and Culture

Expressions

श्रिन्गारहास्यकरुणारौद्रवीरभयानकाः ।
बीभत्साद्भुतशान्ताश्च नव नाट्ये रसाः दृमृताः ॥

– Natyashastram 6.16

Nine Rasas (expressions) have been identified in Natyashastram. They are as below:

  1. Erotic
  2. Humour
  3. Pathos
  4. Anger
  5. Valor
  6. Fear
  7. Disgust
  8. Wonder
  9. Calmness

Painting

शृङ्गारहास्यशानताख्या लेखनीया गृहेषु ते ।
परिशेषाः न कर्तव्याः कदाचिदपि कस्याचित् ॥

Chirasutram explains in a shloka, what kind of expressions can be painted/captured and displayed in a house. Find below the following expressions that can be displayed as explained.

  1. Romance
  2. Humor
  3. Peace

Emotions or expression other than these shall never be displayed in anyone’s house. 

These were some of the ethics or etiquettes that were followed by our ancestors.

Agriculture

Art of Rain Making

हिरण्यकेशो रजसी विसारेहिर्धुनिर्वात इव ध्रजीमान् ।
शुचिभ्राजा उषसो न वेदा यशस्वतीरपस्युवो न सत्याः ॥

सोयम् पुनर्नवजन्यो धूमः हिरण्यकेशः अग्निकेशस्थानीया ज्वाला येन धूमेन​
सहोत्पद्यन्ते । रजसो मेघरूपस्य विसारे प्रसरणे यथा वयुः कम्पमानः
शीघ्रगतियुक्तः तद्वदयम् मेघात्मासोयमीद्दशो घूमोस्मदर्थ वृष्टिं उत्पादयतु
उषसो न वेदा सुर्योदयो यथा न ज्नायते तथा मेघसमृद्धिरस्तु इत्यर्थः ।

– Taittariya Samhita 3.1.11.4

To better understand the above-mentioned shloka on invoking rain, an understanding of the vibration of sound is very important. 

The shloka states:

The twigs of Punarnava (Rain) are offered in the Ahavaniya fire as sacrifice resulting in the smoke consecrated by narrating the mantra, “Hiranya Kesho Rajaso…”, which means that the smoke emerging out of the twig Punarnava bellowing out along with the golden flames move upward to reach the clouds quickly and produces such a heavy downpour that even the sunrise will not be visible due to the dense coverage of the dark clouds.

What Vedas had done it centuries ago, modern science gets the undue credit due to our lack of awareness.

Pesticides

करञ्जार्मवधारिष्ट - सप्तपर्णात्वचा कृतः ।
उपचारः कृमिहारो मूत्र​-मुस्त​-विडङ्गवान् ॥

– Upavanavinoda 184

When the whole world is realizing the mistakes committed by a few farmers plunging into the business of chemical pesticides, this country had always recommended natural resources that support mother earth. 

Worms are destroyed by the application of the following substances made into a paste with the urine of cow and with Vidanga and Musta. The barks of the following trees are used.

  1. Karanja
  2. Armavadha
  3. Arishta
  4. Saptaparna

No need to panic, go organic from centuries before the world realized.

Weeding the field

निष्पन्नमपि यद्धान्यम् न कृतं तृणवर्जितम् ।
न सम्यक् फलमाप्नोति तृणक्शीणा कृषिर्भवेत् ॥
कुलीरभाद्रयोर्मध्ये यद्धान्यम् निस्तृणं भवेत् ।
तृणैरपि तु सम्पूर्नम् तद्धान्यम् द्विगुणम् भवेत् ॥

– Krishi Parashara 189, 190

Weeding out the unwanted crops is as important as keeping our houses clean. It not only yield full returns but also doubles the returns.

Even well-known crops do not yield full returns if they are not weeded out. Crops from which the grass is weeded out especially in Shravana (the month of August) and Bhadrapada (the month of September) doubles itself later. 

Indication of Ground Water

सकुशासित-ऐशान्याम् वल्मीको यत्र कोविदारस्य ।
मध्ये तयोर्नरेरर्थपञ्चमैरतीयमक्शोभ्यम् ॥
प्रथमे पुरुषे भुजगः कमलोदरसन्निभो मही रक्ता ।
कुरुविन्दः पषाणश्चिन्हान्येतानि वाच्यानि ॥

– Brihatsamhita 54.27.28

There are certain criteria mentioned in our ancient texts about how to identify the indication of groundwater.

Find below the criteria

  • If there is an anthill covered by Kusha grass to the northeast of the mountain ebony tree
  • If the appearance of a snake of the color of the lotus-calyx at a depth of five cubits from a surface level
  • If there are layers of red earth and ruby

Sow-Timing

वैशाखे वपनम् श्रेष्ठम् ज्येष्ठे तु मध्यमम् स्मृतं ।
आषाढे चाधमम् प्रोक्तम् श्रावणे चाधमाधमम् ॥
रोपणार्थम् तु बीजानाम् शुचौ वपनमुत्तमम् ।
श्रावणे चाधमम् प्रोक्तम् भाद्रे चैवाधमाधमम् ॥
वृषान्ते मिथुनादा च त्रीण्यहानि रजस्वला ।
बीजम् न वापयेतत्र जनः पापाद्धिनश्यति ॥

– Krishi Parashara

From the Krishi Parashara texts, this shloka indicates the best time to sow seeds. Weather for farmers is an important part of farming and agriculture. 

  • Vaishakha (May) is stated to be the best time
  • Jyeshtha (June) is not so good, rather maybe mediocre 
  • Ashadha (July) not at all good
  • Shravana (August) will be the worst time

The shloka goes on to say that the hot season is an excellent time to sow seeds for transplantation, sowing seeds in Shravana is said to be bad and Bhadrapada is the worst.

The end of Jyeshtha and the beginning of Ashadha is the menstruation period. Seeds must not be sown during this period. Seeds must not be sown during this period, which saves the farmer from regret.

Seedless Fruits

मधुयष्टिसिताकुष्ठम् मधुपुष्पविनिर्मितैः ।
मोदकैश्छादिते मूले निरस्थि स्यात् फलम् तरोः ॥

– Upavanavinoda

Seedless fruits were probably unheard of in the rest of the world when we had organic recipes to harvest seedless fruits. A paste with the following ingredients is prepared as and applied to the roots of a tree to produce seedless fruits.

The ingredients go like this:

  1. Madhuyashti
  2. Sugar
  3. Kushtam
  4. Madhupushpam
1Madhuyashti
2Sugar
3Kushtam
4Madhupushpam

Politics

Appointment of a minister

जानपदोभिजातः स्वग्रहः कृतशिल्पश्चक्षुष्मान् प्राज्नो 
धारयिष्णुर्दक्शो वाग्मी प्रगल्भः प्रतिपत्तिमानुत्साहप्रभावयुक्तः ।
क्लेशसहः शुचिर्मैत्रीद्दढभक्तिः शीलबलारोम्य सत्वयुक्तः
स्तम्भचापल्यवर्जितः सम्प्रियो दैराणामकर्तेत्यमात्यरसम्पत् ॥

Arthashastram

The following prerequisites or qualification is required for a person to be considered as an able good minister. 

  1. A native of the country
  2. Of noble birth
  3. Easy to hold in check
  4. Trained in arts
  5. Possessed of the eye of Science
  6. Intelligent
  7. Persevering
  8. Dexterous
  9. Eloquent
  10. Bold
  11. Possessed of ready wit
  12. Endowed with energy and power
  13. Able to bear troubles
  14. Upright
  15. Friendly
  16. Firmly
  17. Devoted
  18. Endowed with character
  19. Strength
  20. Health
  21. Spirit
  22. Devoid of stiffness
  23. Stable
  24. Devoid of fickleness
  25. Amiable
  26. Not given to creating animosities

It is very important to have a good minister as the minister is responsible for a good country. So, the above criteria or guidelines given thousands of years before are applicable and relevant even today.

Traditional Ancient Indian Universities

1Takshashila
2Nalanda
3Vikramashila
4Kanchi
5Kashi
6Bengal
7Avanti
8Vijayanagara
9Thanjavur
10Ujjain
11Patliputra
12Vallabhi
13Padmavati
14Mathura
15Nashik
16Sarnath

Mathematics

Vedic Mathematics or Veda Ganita

  • A unique technique of calculations based on simple rules and principles with which any mathematical problem can be solved
  • Bases found in Atharva Veda, simplified by Sri Bharati Krishna Tirtha Swamiji (1884 – 1960 AD)
  • Sri Swamiji simplified to sixteen formulae with a shloka and sutra for each.

Why Veda Ganita?

  1. Easy to remember and easy to apply using simple Sanskrit Sutras
  2. Simple formulae to perform mathematical operations
  3. Quick and easy results
  4. More brain exercises that improve mind power

Basic concepts of Vedic Mathematics

Vedic mathematics comprises of sixteen simple sutras and sixteen Sub Sutras.

  • Sixteen sutras are the important formulae of Veda Ganita, to perform mathematical operations simple and faster.
  • Sixteen Upa sutras or Sub Sutras are sub formulae that are used along with the Sutras, across the calculations
1Ekadhikina PurvenaAnurupyenaBy one more than the previous one
2Nikhilam Navatashcaramam DashatahSisyate SesasamjnahAll from 9 and the last from 10
3Urdhva-TiryagbyhamAdyamadyenantyamantyenaVertically and crosswise
4Paraavartya YojayetKevalaih Saptakam GunyatTranspose and adjust
5Shunyam SaamyasamuccayeVestanamWhen the sum is the same that sum is zero.
6(Anurupye) ShunyamanyatVestanamIf one is in ratio, the other is zero
7Sankalana-vyavakalanabhyamYavadunam Tavadunikritya Vargancha YojayetBy addition and by subtraction
8PuranapuranabyhamAntyayordashake’piBy the completion or non-completion
9Chalana-KalanabyhamAntyayorevaDifferences and Similarities
10YaavadunamSamuccayagunitahWhatever the extent of its deficiency
11VyashtisamanstihLopanasthapanabhyamPart and Whole
12Shesanyankena CharamenaVilokanamThe remainders by the last digit
13SopaantyadvayamantyamGunitasamuccayah SamuccayagunitahThe ultimate and twice the penultimate
14Ekanyunena PurvenaDhvajankaBy one less than the previous one
15GunitasamuchyahDwandwa YogaThe product of the sum is equal to the sum of the product
16GunakasamuchyahAdyam Antyam MadhyamThe factors of the sum is equal to the sum of the factors

The endless list will keep growing showing how ahead of time our nation was. Let us stop at this for the time being, as this is more than enough for us to at least feel proud of this place that has produced such great people.