Since almost two years I have been tempted to write about crusades,which have captured the imagination of Islamic and Christian communities(and some history zealots like me) since almost a 1000 years.The word crusade became popular or at least I came across a lot during the second Iraq war, or I should say post Sept 11.Public interest,was probably resurrected in context of Americans trying to avenge the attacks of Sept 11.
I remember also listen to a song as a child “Jerusalem is lost”.And Yes, also heard that people are interested to know how the crusades really started.So according to one reliable source,of which I trust,it all started during the time,when Islam had already been in its Prime.
Jerusalem- is considered to be a holy place for Jews,Muslims and Christians as well.Some say,crusades were started byone person Pope Urban II.The way Pope Urban tried to mobilise people and raise passions,it kind of comes across as Christian version of Jehad.
Jerusalem was projected as a holy city supreme shrine and celestial Kingdom.Security of Holy Sculpture was at stake.Crusade was being portrayed as Salvation point on the battlefields of Jerusalem.It was also the war for money and power,as lands towards east were considered rich.
As the first wave of crusaders(Led by Godfrey) crossed Europe to Constantinople,they forced conversion and massacre thousands of Jews, to avenge the killing Christ.During the same period Arab world was divided and fighting among themselves.They could not provide good resistance to the invading army.
The time crusaders were in Jerusalem,they were exhausted and each crusader was promised possession of any house marked by his shield and arms,hence the crusading army searched Jerusalem and boldly killed the citizens,culling wives,children whole households.
Though- something to be noted- Crusader chronicles for propaganda exaggerated the scale of their crimes.
The second crusade was when Saladin(some say a noble and just ruler) recaptured Jerusalem.
The third Crusade was between Saladin and Richard the Lion Heart.On 4th July 1190,Richard the Lion Heart,King of England and Philip II king of France set out for the third Crusade to liberate Jerusalem.On Sep 1192 and almost a year at war,Saladin and Richard the Lion heart entered truce with Saladin still keeping Jerusalem, but allowing Christians to pray and make Pilgrimage.
Interestingly on his way home Richard was captured by the German King and was only released after one year,when a huge ransom was paid for him.
After Saladin died there was another attack on Jerusalem by Frederick II,who at that time was the most powerful ruler of Europe.(Damn the images of game of thrones are coming to my mind)
I was inspired from-Jerusalem by Simon Sebag Montefiore.
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History is always contentious .To some it is fact,while for rest, is a bunch of lies but for some it is an eye opener.At most times, only the winners of battles and Kings get the opportunity to write the history and they show what they think needs to be shown.
So making an opinion after reading history books or articles can be a deadly sin.Therefore, request all to do your own research, and at least try and read two books on one topic to come any close to forming an opinion.
History hasn’t been kind to any one religion or race.To be able to write on a religion can be tricky,however our history is so entangled with religion that one cannot just skip them,it is only now that fewer countries of the world have State religion.
I happen to have recently visited Bangla Sahib Gurudwara to help pray for a Friend’s Father survival.(who was fighting for his life)
It was also the anniversary of Operation Blue Star and a lot was written in media about Operations blue star.I remember as a six year old, the repercussions of state policies changed the outlook of how people viewed each other.My Grand parents lived in Delhi-Karol Bagh and we did visit them,immediately after the Mayhem.
Follow that ,we had a decade long insurgency-I read a lot of violence in Punjab.So, later when ever I would visit Delhi from Bhopal and see the Turban clad Sikh men,would get scared.(Ironically, this could have been the idea of Guru Har Govind, to install fear in Mughal soldiers -Psychological warfare)
Baba Nanak, was a Hindu reformer from Punjab,born in Khatri community in 1459 at Talwandi(now- Nanakana).Guru Nanak believed in one living God.Gurus from Nanak till Arjun Dev the fifth guru,won accolades from Mughal emperors by their saintly lives.Before Aurangzeb, their was no religious persecution of gurus.
Under Arjun,the fifth Guru, the number of sikh converts increased and also Guru’s wealth.Guru ji organsized a permanent source of income.Agents were posted in every city from Kabul to Dacca,to collect tributes from followers and have it sent to Amritsar(central treasury).Guru was treated like a King.For some reason Guru supported Prince Khusrau(Shahjahan) in his fight against his father Jahangir and gave him monetory help as well.Shahjahan was defeated and Guru was asked to pay a fine of 2 lakh rupees.Arjun refused to pay the fine and was then given punishment,out of which he died.After his death,Guru Har gobind(1606) became the guru and started to train himself in martial exercises and raised a small army.
While in Amritsar,Gurus forces and imperial forcesof new ruler ShanJahan fought each other over some game bird,there was a slaughter and Guru’s forces won.When reinforcements came,they too were beaten back.Lot of people from far and wide became his followers and then more Mughal forces were sent to crush him.His property and house in Amritsar was seized and Guru fled to Kiratpur in Kashmir hills.(1945)
Guru Teg Bahadur became the seventh guru.It was Aurangzed time and mass conversion were happening.Guru Tegh opposed it and encouraged people to resist it.He was taken as prisoner and was tortured for 5 days,before beheaded on his refusal to accept Islam(1675)
So finally open was broke out between Sikh and Islam.It was under tenth Guru Govind rai(1676-1708),that Mughal faced their most fierce enemy.Guru fought from Anandpur fort.He fined Hindus around 125 rs for saluting any Mohammdan saint’s tomb.He lived in a princely state. He fought the Rajas of J&K and Mughals alike.
Eventually Guru had to leave Anandpur fort and leave for South India.While on his way,his four sons perished fighting.The Guru reached Nander on the Godavari, and after staying there for a year and having made peace with the new Mughal ruler Bahadur Shah I,he was stabbed to death by an Afghan.
Inspired by text from -A short history of Aurangzib-Jadunath Sarkar.by admin with No Comments
Why is it that the day,when Jesus Christ was crucified is called Good Friday,and not anything else.Probably,the day when good sacrificed for the greater cause of manhood/womanhood,people may call it good.Though a religious force/clerics conniving with the rulers to have somebody crucified just because they don’t follow the beaten path,speaks of less faith and a sense of insecurity, in their own faith.(samaj ke thekedar)
Very rare do we have examples when new thoughts have been welcomed without bloodshed and violence(eg Buddhism/Jainism)I don’t recollect a violent reaction when these religions started.(or any act of crucification).May be because these religion or say “way of life” were started by all powerful princes.
I think the time when Jesus was crucified in Jerusalem,Judaism was under attack for sometime and Romans had occupied the mind/body and soul of the city and its people.Romans had their own set of god and goddesses.So it seemed society was craving for change and change is what they got.
Recently I came across some videos,which talked about life of Jesus Christ.The video states that Jesus Christ probably studied in India.(the time he was born in bible,it is mentioned that angels(Buddhist monks) from east visited mother Mary.Probably they took the silk route as Buddhism was the most popular religion that time. Infact, it also states that from the age of 14 till i think 28-27, Jesus was travelling in India learning ancient texts/meditation and being a saint was also able to heal people.The lost tribes of Israel, it seemed travelled all the way to India/Kashmir- Features/language match with Jewish features.
As per the video, the way Jesus was crucified, people don’t die,they continue to live on for hours.So probably resurrection could be the way how Jesus with his meditation powers might have come back to life and considering the threat to him and his followers decided to spend the rest of his life in the familiar environment ie in India.(Interesting theory) Check out these videos.
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We don’t have many people these days talking about Gupta period.Neither, there are enough history books exclusively available covering their period,unlike what we have for Mughal time,Mythology(Mahabharataa) or even about King Ashoka times.Some how Gupta period has been completely forgotten by historians.I mean, what is being spread more prominently is the negative aspect of their rule -extinct of Buddhism in India,centralization of power among higher castes,and off course land grants based on caste system.So quite a few ills which our society is struggling have come from or probably originated during Gupta empire.Gupta empire was considered the golden period of India.However,if we talk to people today,they struggle coming up with a single name of ruler from its period.They might at least remember one or two rulers from Mughal,Mauryan but Gupta period,they just don’t.So, probably it has been deliberately ignored.
Therefore, attempt in this blog is made to revive this period of excellence and phenomenal growth.
Sri Gupta, was the one from whose reign we can say that Gupta as an Empire took off.(240-280 AD).After, Sri Gupta came Ghatohkacha. It was in 319 AD that King of Kings Chandragupta became the ruler of Oudh,Gangetic plain and Magdha.Lichchhavi’s(modern day Nepal border areas) played a significant role in the making of the Empire.Lichchhavi daughter was married to Chandragupta.
Samudra Gupta, became the ruler in 335, AD.The name meant, he was protected by sea, or his rule spread till sea.The Allahabad pillar has all details.Samudra Gupta had to fight his elder brother for the succession of the throne.Brother’s name was Kacha.
At Allahbad pillar,Samudra Gupta inscribed the details of his conquests and achievements.This was in stark contrast to how the pillar had details of Asoka.It showed that two kings were poles apart in content and character.
Samudra Gupta,after defeating his nearby kings.ie mordern day Barelli,Mathura started his South Campaign.He fought and conquered territory till Vishakapatnam.
Chandragupta II reigned from 375 AD -414 AD.Chinese Traveller Fa Hien travelled to India,from China via famous Buddhist places.He reliased that Buddhist traditions in China were imperfactly followed, so he traveled with fellow scholors via cities like Khotan, Kushgar.Hiyana form of Budddhism was followed there.The religion was called Shamanism.(The religion which was followed by Chengez Khan).
After crossing Indus the monks from China came to a place called Udyana(where the language spoken was of central India or Middle Kingdom).After that, they reached Taxila & Peshawar,where King Kanisha had built a grand monument.Crossing the range,they came up the region where both Himyana and Mahayana flourished.Even Punjab had lot of Buddhist monasteries.
It was in the middle Kingdom(the land of Bramanas),where people were prosperous and happy.Throughout the country,no one killed anyone,thieves were merely fined,people did n’t drink,they didn’t even have onion or garlic.Only the Chandalas would go hunting and fishing.Evidently Patliputra didn’t enjoy as much prime a position as it enjoyed during the Mauryan times.People of Middle Kingdom were rich and involved in a lot of charity and philanthropic activites.
Chandra gupta II or Vikramaditya ,had his elder brother killed,Who was willing to give his wife Dhruva devi to a Saka ruler.Vikramaditya went to SAKA ruler’s palace as a disguise of the queen and killed the King.He came back to his Kingdom and killed his coward brother and married his wife.(I mean, which kingdom would want to have a spineless ruler,who is giving his wife, to protect his own rule)
Kumara Gupta came to rule in 415 AD.
During Skand Gupta’s time,he fought with Huns in North and Pushyamitras in south.He restored the lost pride of the Empire.Gupta rulers appointed kings based on merit .(It was done by the father)
Buddhism and Jainism still flourished under Gupta rule,however the Gupta’s were followers of Brahminical religion.Sanchi continued to be a great place for Buddhist learning.During those days, there were no libraries.
FYI -Brahminical religion insisted on the contemplation of formless,in which art could not originate(Therefore, Budh Poja or image worship was probably an import from Hellenistic civilization) .Perhaps the earliest form of Brahminical stone structure is the Vishnu shrine at Besnagar near the Heliodorous pillar,second century BC.Satpatha Brahmana describes as Hindu Shrine consisting of two sheds forms of pots and beans and covered with reeds and mats.Religious services and rituals were performed in open air.
Information source is RadhaKumud Mukheerji’s Book on Gupta Empireby admin with No Comments
Recently watched some episodes of New Mahabharata coming on TV.
Initially the new version of Mahabharata on TV,turned out to be interesting enough.However,over a period of time it became a drag,much like popular Hindi Soap operas currently on air and back ground sounds enamating, reflected a Diwali night.So have quit watching it,I think the old version was much faster.The new version started with a lot of promise as I liked their attention to details in dressing etc, but later a big bore.
Inspired and bored by the TV show, went ahead and purchased a book called Govinda’ the Aryavartta Cronicles.
I believe three names/characters greatly influenced the story of Mahabharata and they were largely responsible for The Great Mahabharata war.
Consider Draupadi first- She was one fiery out spoken lady.Her so called sharp remarks,time and again fuelled the fire already burning among rulers and brothers at large.
Govinda-The greatest architect and so called means to end gentleman.He orchestrated the greatest assassinations of that era(I would say one man Mossad-The Israeli secret service)
Suyodhan(Duryoudhan)- No story is complete till you have a villain defined.So, he was happy to take the mantle of anti-hero and went full throttle with his perceived sense of righteousness.
I loved reading it,went like a racy thriller.The book has its own, some interesting revelations on Mahabharata.
Consider this one,Jayathratha, the mightiest of the kings during that period, and had a garrison stationed close to Hastinapur.Bhisma,Dhrathrashtra and other nobles of Hastinapur were all scared of him.Jayadratha,ruled from Magdha,modern day Patliputra.
He was an emperor,whom the rulers of Aryavartta would bow.If we remember the folktale,it says he was killed and had his body parts thrown in two separate directions.But,as per the author he was defeated in a duel,with Bhim and killed,instead of any theatrics.
One of the most amazing characters at display was of Draupadi.She appeared to be in love with Govinda,like most girls of that era.
She seemed to be a woman with her own mind.Her inability to have any choice in choosing her husband speaks of the social climate of that period. Infact,she was actually married to Yudhisthir and not Arjun, in the Palace of her father.What we commonly call the Kaurava Prince as ” Duryodhan”, his name could probably been Suyoddhan(cannot imagine parents giving their child a name starting by Dur-or bad),and he seemed to be a mature politician, statesman and good human being.Infact,Yodhisthir used to often ask for money,to place bets and at times to pay off debts.Suyodhan seems to have been more peaceful,though Dhatrashtra appears to be one power hungry person,who loved the throne,and wouldn’t relinquish it even though his son, the Prince was 46 yrs old.Suyodhan apparently wasn’t really jealous nor insecure.Infact, it was Dharma raj Yodhistar,who could not compare himself with his warrior brothers.
An interesting bit is about,Vyasa,who was the grandfather of Pandu and Dhratrashtra,he himself was a love child.So when the daughters of Kashi,were married to both Hastinapur princes,non of them was able to concieve a child.It was such that fertility of the Princes was in doubt.So Vyasa was called to help produce the lineage of Hastinapur and carry forward the bloodline of King Hastin.It is difficult to believe the folktales,which say that since looking at Vyasa, the princess closed her eyes and that was why a blind son was born.
It seems these were Great men and warriors,who walked the lands of Northern India.The book tries to explain the reason why there was a war.It took place between two sets of people,one who controlled the science and engineering and who wanted to dominate vs the other group,who controlled the scriptures.
I think I might want to recommend people to read Govinda/Kaurava and visit http://www.aryavartachronicles.com/default.htmlby admin with No Comments
Last few posts have been of Mughal emperors,who ruled India for close two centuries.However, we need to remember that all this might have started somewhere.Therefore, tracing the roots became extremely important.So, the buck stops or you can started from Babur.
Babur,who was the father of Humanyun and Akbar’s grandfather,was born in a ruling family based out of central Asia region called Samarkand.His region comprised of the tough terrain from where Timur had come to India.The environment and the time he was born in very extremely fragile and there was constant war in that region.Cities and regions were being lost and won every season and I would say there were a lot of small rulers governing those small territories.
Having read Babur Nama, his own memoirs, I realize that he was always fighting for his survival.And many a occasions he was thrown out/lost wars of his own territories.So, it was only when he came to Kabul,he was able to relax and establish himself a little.His warriors were tougher than Afgan tribesmen and were more disciplined and offcourse, had better techniques for fighting.It was his third invasion of Hindustan that they were able to capture Delhi & Agra.And defeat Abraham lodi in the first battle of Panipat.Babur was a seasoned campaigner,while Lodhi, was foolishly brutal. Babar had in total 12000 troops,Matchlock while Ibrahim Lodhi’s army comprised of more than a 100000 soldiers and close to a 1000 war elephants.After the defeat,where Lodhi was killed in the battle field,Humanyu was able to get hold of Koh-i-Noor diamond,which presumably was brought from South India, by Alauddin Khilji.
Read babur,was a heavy drinker of his times.According to one statement of his,only 4 days are allowed for him to drink,so during those days Babur wold drink at night,while in rest of the days,since it was not allowed Babur and his group would drink in the mornings.
Recently came across from Bharat Ek Khoj, episode on Babur,where they say that it was Rana Sanga,who too invited Babur to invade India.But then, further in the serial,that invitation did not have much impact since Rana Sanga fought with Babur,but was defeated.by admin with 9 Comments
I remember Amar Chitra Katha comic books,which my Father will buy for me,from railway stations and his other travels,when we lived in Bhopal.Every six months, journey to our Fatherland(New Delhi & Western UP) would provide an opportunity for me to lay my hands on some amazing comic story books.I read about some great warriors of our past,one of them was off course the Great Maratha, “Shivaji”.
Shivaji’s life consisted of many adventurous military campaigns which lasted through out his life.I think most of us might remember his use of Tiger Claws against Afzal Khan,Commander from Bijapur.Let me share one of his audacious night attack on Mughal Viceroy of Deccan,Shaista Khan.
Shivaji, wounded the Viceroy in his bed chamber,while his guards were still around.The story goes like this,Shaista Khan was living in Lal Mahal in Pune,where Shivaji had spent his youth.Across the road from Mahal,a Mughal contingent of 10000, men under Jai Singh was camping.On April 5th,1663, Shivaji with 400 men(disguised as Mughal soldiers),entered Pune, telling Mughal forces that they were reinforcements from the other province.It was the day of Ramzan,most of the people had fallen asleep,after having heavy meal. Shivaji,since he knew in and out of the palace,entered the Kitchen,killed few cooks and broke through the wall(wall was newly made) to enter into the Harem of Shaista Khan. 200 Hundred of Shivaji men,who were outside the Harem,entered the band room and ordered the Band members to play. The rest 200 along with Shivaji, entered the bedroom of Shaista Khan, and before Shaista Khan could move,Shivaji jumped on him,and cut off his thumb,fortunately a smart slave girl,quickly put the lights off the Chamber,what followed after that was Mayhem.In the attack,Marathas lost only six men,while they slew a son and a captain of Shaista Khan, forty attendants,six wives and slave girls,wounding Shiasta Khan himself.This daring attack greatly increased the prestige of Marathas.
Those were the times,when nobody was saint.As practice,plundering and looting rival villages and forts was a way to earn quick money for further battles and wars.On one such expedition Shivaji, attacked and his forces ransacked Surat(richest port in Mughal Empire) for days.During those days Surat probably had the richest merchants in the world.Merchant Baharaji Borah’s house was attacked, he had property worth 80 lakh.Surat was a town spread across 7 sq km with a population of 2 lakh,but was not well defended.It’s Mughal commander was corrupt and coward.It was the English merchants who with its small contingent could protect their factory,from the onslaught.Plunder of Surat was an audacious attack and yielded more than one crore to Shivaji and directly challenged the might of Mughals.
Once when in Agra court of Aurangzeb,Shivaji was not only humiliated but was also arrested and put in a gaurded house.But Shivaji made an escape plan.He feigned illness and everyday began to send out sweetmeat and other stuff to be distributed to Brahmans and other religious people.These were carried in huge baskets slung from pole managed by two people.
Soon the guards stopped checking those baskets everyday, On 9th August,Shivaji orderd his half brother to lay instead of him on the bed while he and his son Shambhoji sat in the basket. Shivaji gave his gold bracelet to Hiraji Farzand(his half brother)while he moved out in the baskets.So,whenever the guard saw his hand on the cot(rest of the body was covered), they thought it was Shivaji. By the time Mughal guards realised, Shivaji was 14 hrs ahead of them,and on the run.
Inspiration to write this small note on Shivaji has come from book written by Jadunath Sarkar, “A Short History of Aurangzeb”.
by admin with 3 Comments
Most of us relate to Genghis Khan as a Muslim ruler,who was brutal, barbaric and apparently, whose genes are found in 16 million men living today.But he wasn’t a Muslim.He prayed in the mountains to sky God and Khan title has Mongol origin,given to warrior or head of all tribes.Genghis is said to have believed in Shamaism.Can be co-related to Arab word for buddhists-Samani,which was derived from the Sanskrit Shravana.
How Genghis Khan,a warrior and one of History’s Immortals decides to take revenge from the Muslim world beyond Altai mountains and conquer territories is stuff history is made of.It is surprising to read that an all conquering religious force and a civilization so advanced,could be crushed with such ruthlessness.
To give a background of Genghis Khan or Temujin(his original name)initial years,he was born in an extremely inhospitable environment,in an area which was South of Siberia(close to Lake Baikal and North of Mongolia).
As a thirteen year old he had his half-brother brother killed,by shooting him with an arrow,all planned,in cold blood over a piece of meat.
Iran, Uzbekistan, Tajikistan,Kyrgyztan, Kazakhstan were divided among smaller kingdoms and most of the cities( Samarkand ,Bukhara,urgench,nishapur,Otrar,Merv etc between Amurdarya or Oxus valley(Tansoxania/Jaxartes) and Syr darya lay within the Dominion of Khwarezm Shah,Mohammed.This region was supplied well from Pamirs,and was a fertile land and part of the silk route.
Genghis by now ruling Mongolia & parts of Northern China ( Beijing,Manchuria),had sent a delegation of 450 merchants along with his ambassador to the court of Khwarezm Shah, to build trade and commerce relations.He was a haughty,unscrupulous ruler who did not see what was coming.
This ruler not only refused the offer of trade,he also initially imprisoned those merchants and later got them, all killed(apparently most of those merchants were Muslims).Knowing this,Genghis got furious and decided to march to the Islamic world.(We need to remember that by this time he had the expertise of defeated Chinese army and its vast resources at his disposal)
The march started in 1219, led his army west,with close to one hundred and fifty soldiers and each soldier with atleast 2-3 horses,with its ability to cover 100 kms in a day.They also had the best of Seige machinery .Catapults(modern day artillery) with capability to fire 3 arrows in one go ,naphta bombs and other Chinese inventions,accompanied by finest battle hardened nomadic cavalry.
Mongols used Composite bow,which was lighter and easy to manage than your English longbow.
So,what rolled for 2700 kms from Mongolia to Kharwzem was a Juggernaut.Mongols could cover 800kms in 60 days,Compare this with mechanised army on the move at speed.In Aug 1944, after D day landings of June,Americans under General Patton rolled along at 30 kms a day for 3 days,with virtually no opposition,over the long straight paved roads.. Invasion_of_Khwarezmia
Mongols,initally attacked a city by the name of Otrar,whose commander had killed their merchants and ambassador.After having defeated the city and pouring molten gold down the throat of its commander,Genghis, ordered all the rich people of the city to gather in courtyard,and announced to them, that he is the curse of God!
Now he attacked the confederation of four cities, Samarkand,Bukara,Merv &Gurganj.
These four cities,all located on rivers running from Pamirs.All were trade Emporia linking East and West.
Juvaini(a traveller and author) says 7 thousand soldiers killed 1.2 million citizens of Merv- this city was pearl of central Asia.More than 3 million people were massacred in a span of a year,while the remaining population turned into slaves.
For a Mongol,an unresisting prisonar was easier to kill,than a sheep.You can cut a small hole in the chest,reach inside,grab the heart and stop it.To kill a man, was not more than a second’s job.Its possible for 7000 men to slaughter of a million would have been hard day’s work. Khwarezmian massacres can be easily equated to Nazi Holocaust,as there were similarities in the attitude of Mongol generals and the final solution.
Genghis believed Man’s greatest fortune is to chase and defeat his enemy,seize all his possessions,leave his married women weeping and wailing,use the body of women as night shirts and supports,gazing upon and kissing there rosy breasts,such their lips which are as sweet as the berries of the breasts.
Genghis Khan, while chasing the son of Shah Mohammed arrived till the banks of Indus,however did not cross the river, he saw a Rhinoceros,was told is a bad omen,and he turned back !
Mongol Empire was twice as large as the Roman Empire, Empire of Alexander(probably Alexander did was to defeat just one big ruler) and they conquered Russia in winters which neither Napoleon nor Hitler could do.(Russian story would be told sometime later in future).
The inspiration to write this blogpost has come from John Man.by admin with 11 Comments
India is the cradle of the human race, the birthplace of human speech, the mother of history, the grandmother of legend, and the great grand mother of tradition.(Mark Twain).
I haven’t been able to write since last one week, the reason,pre-occuppied with reading and analysing the read with reference to river Saraswati.
The river was evoked as an auspicious river as well as the deity of knowledge.Our parents and grandparents have always referred to it as goddess and a spiritual river on the banks of which Rig Vedas was written.As a kid though I was fascinated by the mythological tales, however would always trust my text books for information.
Unfortunately the time I completed my school education, could not find any reference of Saraswati in the NCERT syllabus nor was there much to read on Harappa. So, here I was believing firmly in the early British Raj discoverer’s of the Ancient India times.We need to thank those archaeologists ,like Max Muller to have helped us give a window to our past,but as was the times, the way those discoveries were presented it gave us a totally different picture of how our past was. It did help us come out from a thousand year slumber, but with that also came British raj’s own interpretations and the way those things needed to be taught to the public.(Maculley education system).
Saraswati river was once only talked about in our mythology stories and in Rig Veda,but now it is apparent from Satelllite images that there was a river flowing in the region which is now Rajasthan/Bikaner all the way to runn of Katch.
One section of study stays, that Harappan culture was formed initially within the Sarswati region as per the excavated sites of Kalibangan and Dholavira and couple of them in Haryana.Slowly it expanded towards Indus, with sites like Mohenjodaro, developing on its own.
We were told about Harappan civilization, but then it was highlighted as one of little consequence to modern India.When the excavations were done, though ideally we should have marveled at our ancestors achievements, but then we were left with more questions than answers.
When I read about this civilization,I have to admit that Harrapan was the most advanced civilization of its time.More advanced and mature than the ones in Egypt and Mesopotamia.
Couple of points would like to highlight:
Harappans traded with Sumerians(Mesopotamians) and countries like modern day Oman,Harappan porcelean beads and other forms of pottery are found with them,however there is no evidence of Harappans getting anything back from Mesopotamians, Egyptians,central Asian people or people from Oxus valley.( Harrapans -Saraswati valley people were great exporters).
Harappans originated the decimal system, geometry,pythagoras theorem(Pythagoras was Greek).
Remember that song from Mr.Bharat Movie
Harappans were non violent people,archaeologists could not find any weapons or swords,apart from couple of spears which probably were used by gate keepers of the town.
Harappans did not have any King,there was equality, though there were rich people but all in all state took good care of every one.Rich people were living next to modest homes.
Harappans-Saraswati people did not build monuments like Pyramids for ruling class,but built great cities, with amazing buildings, they had made bath rooms on the first floor of a 3 floor structure.
Rigveda was written during Saraswati- Harappan times,with Yoga, Shiva as the symbols found from the excavations of Harappan sites.
Harappan were perfect in calculations, the streets and dimensions of lanes which Harappans took, similar ratios were taken a thousand year later in the early half of BC.(This shows that Harappans were very advanced and also that their system of measurement was in practice even during the so called Aryan times).
The dancing girl statue recovered from Harappa has similar kind of ornaments being worn by Rajasthani women even today.
The measurements used by Kautilya(Chanakya) in Arthashastra are described exactly similar to Harappan times and so was the weight system.
While reading, I also realised that Aryan Invasion theory is seriously in question now,with arrival of Aryans being proved by nothing.Disappearance of Harappan cities cannot be attributed to an invasion.We haven’t found any dead bodies no armour,absolutely no evidence of mass destruction or killing,In fact according to Michel Danino there has been no invasion.It is because of the drying up of Saraswati river that civilization moved eastwards towards Gangetic plain!
But you know, there are divergent views depending on the school of thought.I hope we all get to read about the common agreed thought sometime soon and the language used by Harappans gets deciphered as well.
But what we see today, of the country, we find it difficult to say that our land had the most advanced civilization of its times.Our modern day civic sense absolutely gives away,the so called cultural heritage.
by admin with 10 Comments