Hinduism Sanatana Dharma A Black Hole ?

I received an interesting comment for my Post ‘Shiva Linga In Mecca, OM Is 786?

Principles of Sanatana Dharma, jpg

Principles of Sanatana Dharma, Hinduism

I am quoting it below.

But isn’t Hinduism a derivative of Buddhism and Jainism?… don’t you think Hinduism is just a black hole constantly changing and sucking in everything around and changing according to the geography and beliefs…. being purely pagan in its birth and then realizes knowledge and starts to adapt and reform around peoples beliefs?….

I am an amateur in my history of religion but it has always intrigued me.,… Hinduism i thought purely was a way of life….not a religion, that over the millenniums changed like Chinese whisper from location to location…. so much so there’s a depiction of Jesus Christ idol in a temple in Tamil Nadu.

I am not religious at all, because of what humans have turned GOD into…. but i am intrigued at our ways to story tell that has changed to belief over thousands of years…. Some where out there is the truth, but we can all only have an opinion of it…”

Hinduism, Sanatana Dharma is not a derivative of Jainism or Buddhism.

Jainism came later to Sanatna Dharma nd Buddhism later.

It is the other way around… Hinduism in the sense that  while these two systems do not believe in the authority of Vedas,

hence called Nastika System, believe in Karma theory, Moksha called Nirvana and Rebirth.

Jainism is a strict follower of the Ethics of the Vedas more than the Vedas in emphasizing Truth, righteousness.

Buddhism reaches th Stage of Advaita but falls short of it by declaring the Reality as Sunya, Zero, Nihilism.

So much is Buddhism similar to the Advaita of Adi Shankaracharya that He was accused of being a Pseudo-Buddhist!

These systems which decried the excessive rituals( Justifiably so) of Sanatana dharma ended up with Rituals.

They decried idol worship, landed in worshiping The Tirthankara, Mahavira and Buddha!

Yes, to an extent the statement that Hinduism is like a Black hole is true, it sucks the best out of every system and assimilates it.

The reason is that while other religions were founded , had a founder and an intention to have followers.

Hinduism, Sanatana Dharma was not founded by any one nor does it have a rigid text to follow.

It observes Life, tries out various methods to face life and after life and presents them all.

One can take any thing out of it and discard what does not suit him/her.

It is based on experience and intuition along with Reason .

It listens , never dogmatic.

By assimilating what is best it consumes other religions with out a fight for it is after Truth, what ever be the source.

Let noble thoughts reach my ears from everywhere-Rig Veda.

Bhatram Karnobhi Srunuyaama Deva

Yet one point to be noted is that it precedes all religions as evidenced by archeology, astronomy, etymology of Sanskrit and Tamil

When one starts questioning other religions, one does not get as authentic proof as in Hinduism.

Rama, Krishna, Ravana, Mahabharata,Ramayana, Agastya, Shiva ,Parashurama, ..all of them have left trails that can be verified.

If one were to ask fundamental questions as to what was before Christianity you get Judaism.

For Judaism, Sanatana Dharma.

For Islam the History of the middle east just  before Prophet has been erased to such an extent that one lands with Sumerian civilisation.Minoan!

The traces of Hinduism are found in Islam , Sumeria, Minoan civilization, Mayas, Incas,Polynesian Religions;

World languages trace their origins to Sanskrit and Tamil.

One finds evidence of Sanatana Dharma and Tamil, which is /was a part of Santaana Dharma,


Sri Lanka, Myanmar, Singapore, Malaysia, Indonesia,japan, Korea, New Zealand, Fiji, Mauritius, Australia,Oman, Saudi Arabia,Romania, Bulgaria, Germany,Ireland,England, Denmark,France,Greece,Egypt, Africa, Peru, Chile, US, ….

Yes Hinduism is like a Black hole it that it is so vast one finds it difficult to comprehend it!


Indra’s Father Dyaus Indra In World Religions

Many of us know the barest details of Indra, the chief of the Devathas of Hinduism.

That he was the father of Arjuna, husband of Indrani,wields Thundebolt, induced Rains in Govardhana Giri,has Vajrayudha ,rides the elephant Airavatha, his Post of Indra changes every Manvantrara and of his infamous episode involving Ahalya.

That’s about all.

Indra, atop the Airavatha Elephant,Angkorvat.image.

Indra, atop the Airavatha Elephant,Angkorvat. Click to enlarge.

Indra, atop the Airavatha Elephant,Angkorvat.

But it may be of interest to know that Indra was one of the earliest Vedic Deities mentioned in th Rigveda.

Hs father was Dayus and other Savasi.

The name Dayus is being used by the western scholars to spread a canard to disseminate information under the guise of Research papers stating that there was  Proto-Indo-European or Graeco-Aryan language group and there was a tribe in the Caucasus called Aryans who entered India!

I shall be calling off this bluff in another post.

Indra (Indara) is also mentioned among the gods of the Mitanni, a Hurrian-speaking people who ruled northern Syria from ca.1500BC-1300BC.

The attributes of Zeus of the Greeks and Indra are identical.

Vedic Indra corresponds to Verethragna of the Zoroastrian Avesta as the noun verethragna- corresponds to Vedic vrtrahan-, which is predominantly an epithet of Indra.

*According to Anthony, the Old Indic religion probably emerged among Indo-European immigrants in the contact zone between the Zeravshan River (present-day Uzbekistan) and (present-day) Iran*. It was “a syncretic mixture of old Central Asian and new Indo-European elements”, which borrowed “distinctive religious beliefs and practices” from the Bactria–Margiana Culture. At least 383 non-Indo-European words were borrowed from this culture, including the god Indra and the ritual drink Soma.According to Anthony,

*I contest this claim and I shall be repudiating this point in another Post.

He under whose supreme control are horses, all chariots, the villages, and cattle;
He who gave being to the Sun and Morning, who leads the waters, He, O men, is Indra. ( Rig Veda 2.12.7, trans. Griffith)

It further states,

Indra, you lifted up the pariah who was oppressed, you glorified the blind and the lame. (Rg-Veda 2:13:12)

Indra is, with Varuna and Mitra, one of the Ādityas, the chief gods of the Rigveda (besides Agni and others such as the Ashvins). He delights in drinking soma and the centralVedic myth is his heroic defeat of Vṛtrá, liberating the rivers, or alternatively, his smashing of the Vala cave, a stone enclosure where the Panis had imprisoned the cows that are habitually identified with Ushas, the dawn(s). He is the god of war, smashing the stone fortresses of the Dasyu, but he is also is invoked by combatants on both sides in the  Battle of the Ten Kings.

..The Rig-Veda frequently refers to him as Śakra: the mighty-one. In the Vedic period, the number of gods was assumed to be thirty-three and Indra was their lord. (Some early post Rigvedic texts such as the Khilas and the late Vedic Brihad-Aranyaka Upanishad enumerates the gods as the eight Vasus, the eleven Rudras, the twelve Adityas, Indra, and Prajapati). As lord of the Vasus, Indra was also referred to as Vāsava.

In Rigveda, Indra the solar god is sometimes described as golden-bodied with golden jaw, nails, hair, beard.

One Atharva Vedic verse reads, “In Indra are set fast all forms of golden hue.”

In the RV 1.65 reads, “SAKRA, who is the purifier (of his worshipers), and well-skilled in horses, who is wonderful and golden-bodied.”Rigveda also reads that Indra “is the dancing god who, clothed in perfumed garments, golden-cheeked rides his golden cart.” One passage calls him both brown and yellow. “Him with the fleece they purify, brown, golden-hued, beloved of all, Who with exhilarating juice goes forth to all the deities”:

With him too is this rain of his that comes like herds: Indra throws drops of moisture on his golden beard. When the sweet juice is shed he seeks the pleasant place, and stirs the worshipper as wind disturbs the wood.

—Rig Veda, Book 10, Hymn XXIII, P. 4

At the swift draught the Soma-drinker waxed in might, the Iron One with yellow beard and yellow hair.

The 14 Indras .

Manvatara/Manu Indra
Svayambhuva Yajna (Avatar of Vishnu)
Swarochish Vipaschit
Uttam Sushaanti
Taamas Shibi
Raivat Vibhu
Chaakshush Manojav
Shraaddhdev Purandar (the present Indra)
Savarni Bali
Daksha Saavarni Adbhut
Brahma Saavarni Shanti
Dharma Saavarni Vish
Rudraputra Saavarni Ritudhaama
Ruchi (Deva Saavarni) Devaspati
Bhaum (Indra Saavarni) Suchi

While the battle between Indra and Vritra is included in the Avesta, the Zoroastrian holy book, Zoroastrianism takes a much different interpretation of Indra’s character. Rather than venerating Indra as the supreme embodiment of good, Zoroastrianism instead claims Indra to be the leader of “false gods” (which refers to virtually all gods other than Ahura Mazda, the supreme deity in Zoroastrianism). These beings are equated with demons. In the Vendidad, the most recent of the texts within the Avesta, Indra is identified as one of the six chief demons that are seen to stand opposite the six Amesha Spentas, spirits which put in place the benevolent will of Ahura Mazda.Vendidad 10.9 explains that Indra is the direct enemy of Asha Vahishta, who personifies the aspect of asha/rta or Truth. Thus, Indra is the opponent of order, truth, and righteousness. Similarly, in the Denkard, a ninth-century Middle Persian text, Indra is the arch-demon that “is the spirit of apostasy and further deceives the worldly existence of mankind” (9.3). In the Bundahishn, a Zoroastrian account of creation, Indra “freezes the minds of the creatures from practicing righteousness just like much frozen snow. He instills this into the minds of men that they ought not to have the sacred shirt and thread girdle” (27.6). The shirt and girdle are garments that must be worn by all devout Zoroastrians, thus Indra stands in diametric opposition to one of the indispensable aspects of the Zoroastrian faith. Atfrashokereti, the eschatological regeneration of good within the universe, it is said that Indra will be defeated by Asha Vahishta (34.27).

In the mythology and iconography of Indra that arose after the Vedas in the heterodox Indian schools of Buddhism and Jainism, Indra retained his role as chief of the gods. Although Jainism is non-theist, it is Indra who awards Jain founder Mahavira with a golden robe during his earthly life, and later welcomes him into heaven upon his death. Buddhists also acknowledge Indra as the original leader of the Devas, ruler of the heaven of the Thirty-three gods. All in all, Indra is rarely referred to in Buddhist texts, and when he is it is either as a minor deity (a lord of the yakṣas, for instance), or as the object of worship of the Brahmins.

Sikhs believe that there is only one god without question. However, the Gurus still mention numerous Hindu deities in the Guru Granth Sahib, including Indra. Bhagat Kabir Ji, whose hymns are found in Guru Granth Sahib Ji, mentions Indra among other Hindu gods: “Beings like Hanumaan, Garura, Indra the king of the gods and the rulers of humans—none of them know Your Glories, Lord” (Ragg Dhanaasree, Panna 691.2). Passages such as this illustrate the Sikh belief that although Indra and other personalistic dieties have been meditated upon by the minds of humans for thousands of years, they merely as a function of maya and do not allow for full a complete understanding of the one supreme God. Although the Sikhs do not worship Indra specifically, his name also appears as a part of many Sikh compound names as the ending “inder.” This ending represents the strength and virility in battle that Indra embodies, and can be used by both males and females.





Atheistic Hinduism Carvaka, Founder Brahaspati, Deva Guru

Indian Philosophy, Hinduism does not shun those who deny the existence of God.

It is taken as a point of view of Life.

Though philosophical arguments were engaged in rebutting the Carvakas, there not harassed nor branded as Atheists and ostracized.

Carvakas, Lokayatas Indian Philosophical System.image.jpg

Carvakas, Lokayatas Indian Philosophical System.

They were present during the Rig Vedic period, some 5000 years back and their later work is dated to be around 600 BC.

The CarvakaSyatem, the Indian Atheistic Hedonist Syatem is also also called  Lokayata.,(worldly wise)

The flip side of this is that the Charvaka’s first Text,the primary source, which is lost to us , is credited to Bruhaspati, the Guru,Preceptor of the Devas!

This shows that though one is a Realized soul, Bruhaspati is One, one is not averse to exploring the other views as well and even propagated one so that to who ever these thoughts appealed they might follow.

Kapila, who is an Avatar of Lord Vishnu is the founder of Samkhya Philosophy,which denies God!

Samkhya is considered s one of the most respected philosophical systems of India.

Hinduism does not differentiate between one who believes in God and one who does not.

Astika system is one that believes in the Authority of the Vedas and others who do not accept the Vedas, Sabda, as the authority are called Nastikas.

Carvakas, Jainism, Buddhism and Ajivika are Nastika systems.

What does Carvakas say?

Carvakas do not believe in God, Vedas.

They do  not believe in Rebirth and Karma or ceremonies.

They take Perception only as the means of knowledge and deny even inference as an Instrument of Knowledge.

Inference, the process by which, we come to know of things by things that are present before us.

The presence of electricity is inferred by the results it produces,like Light, Sound .

Carvakas, do not admit this knowledge , saying that the conditions for this inference may not always be correct.

They imply that One result may be caused by more than one Cause.

This is rebutted by Advaita and it proves that Inference is an essential tool, by describing Parinamavada and Vivartahvada, that is Cause is contained in the Effect and Effect in the Cause.

I shall write on this in detail.

For the Carvakas, Pleasure is the only Goal.

On Death, Birth, origin of the Universe , they brush every thing aside by saying it is Nature.

They do not go into the point of what Nature is.

This enquiry is done by the Astika systems like Samkhya, Yoga, Nyaya, Vaiseshika,Mimamsa and Vedanta, apart from Vedas, which deals with this subject in detail.

Cārvāka means “agreeable speech” or “sweet talkers” (चारु, cāru – agreeable, pleasant or sweet and वाक, vāk – speech). Its traditional name, Lokāyata (Sanskrit: लोकायत) signifies “directed towards, aiming at the world” (लोक, loka which means “worlds, abode, place of truth, people”, and आयत, āyata means “extended, directed towards, aiming at”

Some observations by Carvaka.

‘The Carvaka epistemology holds perception as the primary and proper source of knowledge, while inference is held as prone to being either right or wrong and therefore conditional or invalid Perception are of two types, for Carvaka, external and internal. External perception is described as that arising from the interaction of five senses and worldly objects, while internal perception is described by this school as that of inner sense, the mind. Inference is described as deriving a new conclusion and truth from one or more observations and previous truths. To Carvakas, inference is useful but prone to error, as inferred truths can never be without doubt. Inference is good and helpful, it is the validity of inference that is suspect – sometimes in certain cases and often in others. To the Cārvākas there were no reliable means by which the efficacy of inference as a means of knowledge could be established…

Cārvākas denied metaphysical concepts like reincarnation, extracorporeal soul, efficacy of religious rites, other worlds (heaven and hell), fate and accumulation ofmerit or demerit through the performance of certain actions.Cārvākas also rejected the use of supernatural causes to describe natural phenomena. To them all natural phenomena was produced spontaneously from the inherent nature of things.

The fire is hot, the water cold, refreshing cool the breeze of morn;
By whom came this variety ? from their own nature was it born.

Consciousness and afterlife.

There is no other world other than this;
There is no heaven and no hell;
The realm of Shiva and like regions,
are invented by stupid imposters.

—Sarvasiddhanta Samgraha,  Verse 8 [

The Sarvasiddhanta Samgraha states the Carvaka position on pleasure and hedonism as follows,

The enjoyment of heaven lies in eating delicious food, keeping company of young women, using fine clothes, perfumes, garlands, sandal paste… while moksha is death which is cessation of life-breathe… the wise therefore ought not to take pains on account ofmoksha.

A fool wears himself out by penances and fasts. Chastity and other such ordinances are laid down by clever weaklings.

—Sarvasiddhanta Samgraha,  Verses 9-12
No independent works on Cārvāka philosophy can be found except for a few sūtras composed by Brihaspati. The 8th century Tattvopaplavasimha of Jayarāśi Bhaṭṭa withMadhyamaka influence is a significant source of Carvaka philosophy. Shatdarshan Samuchay and Sarvadarśanasaṅ̇graha of Vidyaranya are a few other works which elucidate Cārvāka thought.
Lord Rama had a detailed discussion with Jabali, a Carvaka, Please read my post on this.
Reference and Citation.
Astrophysics, Hinduism

Sanskrit Documents On Interstellar Spaceships Found in Lhasa

The vital difference in acquiring Knowledge between India and the West lies in the fact that while Knowledge is  a Positive Concept in the West, it is Negative Concept in India.

Anti Gravity Interstellar Ships of Ancient India.Image.jpg

Anti Gravity Interstellar Ships of Ancient India.

knowledge, in its fundamental form Awareness, is, not acquisition of some thing new and external to us,but the removal of Ignorance,Misconceptions Avidya.

Once the false notions are removed Real knowledge shines forth.

Buddhism and Jainism state the same Truth but there are minor Philosophical differences on this with Hinduism.

Pure Knowledge is Pure Consciousness, Chit.

Please read my Post Vedas on Consciousness.

There are many methods of obtaining this Knowledge.

Patanjali follows the Raja Yoga  in his Yoga Sutras.

He describes the process of obtaining this Knowledge in the first Yoga Sutra.

‘Yoga:Chitta Vruththi Nirodhithaha’

Yoga(Union with Reality) is Cessation of Modification of Chitta.

For detailed explanation please read my post on this.

On successful completion of the Yoga procedures, or even during the process one shall gain some special powers.

These are eight in number.

  • Aṇimā: reducing one’s body even to the size of an atom
  • Mahima: expanding one’s body to an infinitely large size
  • Garima: becoming infinitely heavy
  • Laghima: becoming almost weightless
  • Prāpti: having unrestricted access to all place
  • Prākāmya: realizing whatever one desires
  • Iṣṭva: possessing absolute lordship
  • Vaśtva: the power to subjugate all

Of this Laghima is the power to defy Gravity.

As Reality is One and as are the Reality, the realized Ones, can alter the perceived objects and bend them to their Will.

They can regroup the atomic composition of Matter.

They can make things lighter than air, make things move in a Vacuum.

All these were documented bu Yogis and Siddhas in their works in the form of Sutras.

There was a group of Nine Unknown Men during the period of  Emperor Ashoka, who were the guardians of these.

They were the Illuminati of India.

Please read my Post on this.

Such a Manuscript was found in Lhasa, Tibet by the Chinese.

Read the following.

‘The “Nine Unknown Men” wrote a total of nine books, presumably one each. Book number was “The Secrets of Gravitation!” This book, known to historians, but not actually seen by them dealt chiefly with “gravity control.”

It is presumably still around somewhere, kept in a secret library in India, Tibet or elsewhere (perhaps even in North America somewhere). One can certainly undertand Ashoka’s reasoning for wanting to keep such knowledge a secret, assuming it exists, if the Nazis had such weapons at their disposal during World War II. Ashoka was also aware devastating wars using such advanced vehicles and other ‘futuristic weapons’ that had destroyed the ancient Indian “Rama Empire” several thousand years before.

Only a few years ago, the Chinese discovered some sanskrit documents in Lhasa, Tibet and sent them to the University of Chandrigarh to be translated. Dr. Ruth Reyna of the University said recently that the documents contain directions for building interstellar spaceships!

Flying Machines

Their method of propulsion, she said, was “anti-gravitational” and was based upon a system analogous to that of “laghima,” the unknown power of the ego existing in man’s physiological makeup, “a centrifugal force strong enough to counteract all gravitational pull.” According to Hindu Yogis, it is this “laghima” which enables a person to levitate.

Dr. Reyna said that on board these machines, which were called “Astras” by the text, the ancient Indians could have sent a detachment of men onto any planet, according to the document, which is thought to be thousands of years old.

The manuscripts were also said to reveal the secret of “antima”; “the cap of invisibility” and “garima”; “how to become as heavy as a mountain of lead.”

Naturally, Indian scientists did not take the texts very seriously, but then became more positive about the value of them when the Chinese announced that they were including certain parts of the data for study in their space program!

This was one of the first instances of a government admitting to be researching anti-gravity.

The manuscripts did not say definitely that interplanetary travel was ever made but did mention, of all things, a planned trip to the Moon, though it is not clear whether this trip was actually carried out. However, one of the great Indian epics, the Ramayana, does have a highly detailed story in it of a trip to the moon in a Vimana (or “Astra”), and in fact details a battle on the moon with an “Asvin” (or Atlantean” airship. ..

According to ancient Indian texts, the people had flying machines which were called “Vimanas.” The ancient Indian epic describes a Vimana as a double-deck, circular aircraft with portholes and a dome, much as we would imagine a flying saucer.

It flew with the “speed of the wind” and gave forth a “melodious sound.” There were at least four different types of Vimanas; some saucer shaped, others like long cylinders (“cigar shaped airships”).

The ancient Indian texts on Vimanas are so numerous, it would take volumes to relate what they had to say. The ancient Indians, who manufactured these ships themselves, wrote entire flight manuals on the control of the various types of Vimanas, many of which are still in existence, and some have even been translated into English.

The Samara Sutradhara is a scientific treatise dealing with every possible angle of air travel in a Vimana. There are 230 stanzas dealing with the construction, take-off, cruising for thousand of miles, normal and forced landings, and even possible collisions with birds.

In 1875, the Vaimanika Sastra, a fourth century B.C. text written by Bharadvajy the Wise, using even older texts as his source, was rediscovered in a temple in India.

It dealt with the operation of Vimanas and included information on the steering, precautions for long flights, protection of the airships from storms and lightening and how to switch the drive to “solar energy” from a free energy source which sounds like “anti-gravity.”

The Vaimanika Sastra (or Vymaanika-Shaastra) has eight chapters with diagrams, describing three types of aircraft, including apparatuses that could neither catch on fire nor break.

It also mentions 31 essential parts of these vehicles and 16 materials from which they are constructed, which absorb light and heat; for which reason they were considered suitable for the construction of Vimanas.

This document has been translated into English and is available by writing the publisher: VYMAANIDASHAASTRA AERONAUTICS by Maharishi Bharadwaaja, translated into English and edited, printed and published by Mr. G. R. Josyer, Mysore, India, 1979 (sorry, no street address). Mr. Josyer is the director of the International Academy of Sanskrit Investigation located in Mysore’

Read my Post on Vaimanika Shastra.

Citation and Reference.


Ashoka, Emperor of India.image.jpg

Greeks Followed Buddhism Ashokas Edicts

I have been planning to write on Buddhism and Jainism, the two Great Religions of India apart from Hinduism.

To begin with let me share information about the propagation of Buddhism around the world.

Ashoka Maurya (/əˈʃkə/; Sanskrit: अशोक मौर्य; 304–232 BCE), commonly known as Ashoka and also as Ashoka the Great, was an Indian emperor of the Maurya Dynasty who ruled almost all of the Indian subcontinent from circa 269 BCE to 232 BCE.[1] One of India’s greatest emperors, Ashoka reigned over a realm that stretched from the Hindu Kush mountains in the west to Bengal in the East and covered the entire Indian subcontinent except parts of present day Tamil Nadu and Kerala. The empire’s capital wasPataliputra (in Magadha, present-day Bihar), with provincial capitals at Taxila and Ujjain.


Buddhism in the world during Asoka's Reign.image.jpg

Spread of Buddhism during Asoka’s period

Asoka took to Buddhism with great zest and propagated it around the world by sending out preachers.

He had recorded this in his edicts.

Emperor Asoka's Edicts.image.jpg

Emperor Asoka’s Edicts Locations.

The Ashoka inscriptions represent the first tangible evidence of Buddhism. The edicts describe in detail the first wide expansion of Buddhism through the sponsorship of one of the most powerful kings of Indian history. According to the edicts, the extent of Buddhist proselytism during this period reached as far as the Mediterranean, and many Buddhist monuments were created.

The inscriptions proclaim Asoka’s beliefs in the Buddhist concept of dhamma and his efforts to develop “dhamma” throughout his kingdom. Although Buddhism and the Buddha are mentioned, the edicts of Asoka tend to focus on social and moral precepts rather than religious practices or the philosophical dimension of Buddhism.

The inscriptions revolve around a few repetitive themes: Ashoka’s conversion to Buddhism, the description of his efforts to spread Buddhism, his moral and religious precepts, and his social and animal welfare program.

Ashoka explains that he converted to Buddhism out of remorse for his conquest of the Kalingas around 264 B.C.E. in eastern India (near the present-day state of Orissa):

Beloved-of-the-Gods, King Piyadasi, conquered the Kalingas eight years after his coronation. One hundred and fifty thousand were deported, one hundred thousand were killed and many more died (from other causes). After the Kalingas had been conquered, Beloved-of-the-Gods came to feel a strong inclination towards the Dhamma, a love for the Dhamma and for instruction in Dhamma. Now Beloved-of-the-Gods feels deep remorse for having conquered the Kalingas (Rock Edict Nb13, S. Dhammika).

Following his conversion, Ashoka traveled throughout India and visited sacred Buddhist locations, where he would typically erect a pillar bearing his inscriptions:

Twenty years after his coronation, Beloved-of-the-Gods, King Piyadasi, visited this place and worshipped because here the Buddha, the sage of the Sakyans, was born. He had a stone figure and a pillar set up and because the Lord was born here, the village of Lumbini was exempted from tax and required to pay only one eighth of the produce (Minor Pillar Edict Nb1, S. Dhammika).

Ashoka’s concept of “Dhamma” seems to be synonymous with righteousness. In order to propagate the Buddhist faith, Ashoka explains he sent emissaries to the Hellenistic kings as far as the Mediterranean, and to the peoples throughout India, claiming they were all converted to the Dharma as a result. He names the Greek rulers of the time, inheritors of the conquest of Alexander the Great, from Bactria to as far as Greece and North Africa, displaying an amazingly clear grasp of the political situation at the time.

Buddhist proselytism at the time of kingAshoka (260-218 B.C.E.).

Now it is conquest by Dhamma that Beloved-of-the-Gods considers to be the best conquest. And it (conquest by Dhamma) has been won here, on the borders, even six hundred yojanas away, where the Greek king Antiochos rules, beyond there where the four kings named Ptolemy, Antigonos, Magas and Alexander rule, likewise in the south among the Cholas, the Pandyas, and as far as Tamraparni (Rock Edict Nb13, S. Dhammika).

The distance of 600 yojanas (a yojanas being about 7 miles), corresponds to the distance between the center of India and Greece (roughly 4,000 miles).

  • Antiochos refers to Antiochus II Theos of Syria (261-246 B.C.E.), who controlled the Seleucid Empire from Syria to Bactria, in the east from 305 to 250 B.C.E., and was therefore a direct neighbor of Ashoka.
  • Ptolemy refers to Ptolemy II Philadelphos of Egypt (285-247 B.C.E.), king of the dynasty founded by Ptolemy I, a former general of Alexander the Great, in Egypt.
  • Antigonos refers to Antigonus II Gonatas of Macedon (278-239 B.C.E.)
  • Magas refers to Magas of Cyrene (300-258 B.C.E.)
  • Alexander refers to Alexander II of Epirus (272-258 B.C.E.)