By C. P. S Menon

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Additional info for Early Astronomy and Cosmology: A reconstruction of the Earliest Cosmic System (History of science library)

Sample text

Miscellaneous Essays, Vol . I, p. 2 5 et seq . z The scale of ro8 divisions can be seen in the Naviimsas of Varahamihira. Though these divisions are treated as 9 parts of each sign, the continuity of the scale is seen from the fact that the divisions are governed by the Lords of the signs repeated 9 times in cyclic order : thus the Naviimsas of Mesha (Ram) are governed, not by the the Lord of the rst sign , but by those of the rst, 2nd . . 9th signs ; the next 9 divisions by the Lords of the roth, nth, rzth, rst .

1 66. 56 EARLY ASTRONOMY AND COSMOLOGY in the year-though, no doubt, the experience that there were twelve full moons in the year must have strengthened the faith of the people in the significance of this number, and persuaded them to select th i s scale for representing the months. Thus one of the earliest sets of months was t h a t of "seasonal-months, " Madh u , llfiidhava (honey, sweet spring) , . . Nabhas, Nabhasya (rainy, vapoury), etc. Jig- Vedic months were only "twelve artificial periods" of 30 days each ; in the Siima-siitras we find twelve sidereal months of 27 days each in a sidereal year of 324 days, etc.

The reference to the year as the "visible " form of Time , and other kindred references like "The Year is Space " 1 or "is the firmament " l or "is the world of heaven"3 appear to me to apply to the Year-Cycle or the rudimentary Zodiac , which , being the path traversed i n the heavens by the Sun god in one year, formed the - connec ting link between Time and Space. Prajiipati has always concept ; b ut it i s Prajiip a ti ( of the = = The Vedic been an obscure and complicated e a s ily understood on this system .

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Early Astronomy and Cosmology: A reconstruction of the Earliest Cosmic System (History of science library) by C. P. S Menon


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