Astronomy in ViSNupurANa

Fri Feb 27 17:04:38 UTC 1998

At 07:49 AM 2/27/98 -0600, Narahari Achar wrote:
>>At 09:14 PM 2/26/98 +0500, I wrote:
>>>parAzarA is supposed to be one of the famous ancient astronomers.
>>>But in viSNupurANa he appears to believe that the Sun in addition to  going
>>>round the zodaic once in an year, goes round the zodaic once
>>>in a day also as can be seen from the following verses in viSNupurANa.
>>>        ahOrAtrENa yO bhuKktE samastA rAzayO dvija  2.45.(2)
>>>        SaDEva rAzIn yO bhuKktE rAtrAvanyAJsca SaDdivA 2.46(1)
>>>But this could have been easily found to be incorrect by the observation
>>>at the time of a total solar eclipse.
>>>Thank you in advance for any elucidation of this.
>>The sloka numbers are given wrongly. They should be
>>         ahOrAtrENa yO bhuKktE samastA rAzayO dvija  2.8.45.(2)
>>         SaDEva rAzIn yO bhuKktE rAtrAvanyAJsca SaDdivA 2.8.46(1)
>>Observation of the stars just after sunset also should convince one
>>that Sun does not go round the zodiac daily.
> There is a very simple explanation of this statement.
>Please refer to VP (1. 3. 10):
>         ayanam dakSiNam rAtrirdevAnAm uttaram dinam
>The ahorAtra referred (2.8.45-6) is the ahoratra of the devAs, which
>corresponds to one year of the mAnavAs. Hence the sun progresses through all
>the rAzi s in one ahorAtra.
>It is unfortunate that sometimes the statements are misunderstood and
>about the incapability of simple observations by ancient Indian
astronomers are
>hurled. Pingree swears that Indian astronomers were not interested in making
>the simplest of observations.
>Narahari Achar

I do not think this explanation is valid. These slokas occur in the context
of explaining the lengthening of the day in uttarAyana and the shortening
in dakSiNAyana.

   rAzipramAnAjanitA dIrghahrasvAtmatA dinE 2.8.46(2)
   tathA nizAyAM rAzInAM pramANairlaghudIrghatA
   dinAdErdIrghahrasvatvaM tadbhOgEnaiva jAyatE 2.8.47

Obviously the context here is not the ahOrAtra of dEvAs but of
earthly beings.



More information about the INDOLOGY mailing list