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Historicity of the Mahabharata and the most probable date of the Kurukshetra war

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Historicity of the Mahabharata and the most probable date of
the Kurukshetra war
Bijan Kumar Gangopadhyay
Sovarani Memorial College, Dept of Physics, Jagatballavpur, Howrah
West Bengal, India 711409
Mail id: bkgangopadhyay@gmail.com
ABSTRACT
The Mahabharata, the great Indian epic was composed by sage Veda Vyasa. It is mentioned in
mythological evidences that the epic was written by Ganesha sitting in a cave known as Vyas
Gumpha. Originally the epic contained 8000 verses which ultimately increased to 100000
verses that is available today. Naturally a question mark has been put about the reality of
incidences that has been narrated in the text. The spreading of the epic throughout the human
society from years after years was accompanied orally by many disciples from generation to
generation. As it had been carried through oral recitation there was a lot of possibilities of
addition and alteration at different stages of such progress. This has made the epic volumes
with extrapolation. This brings the challenge of reality or rather existence of any historicity
behind the epic. Fortunately several archaeological excavations were done around the sites
associated with the Mahabharata and found positive relics of ancient happenings. These
findings establish the basis of some historicity in the epic. We also do believe in historical
elements that were definitely present on the then period of the Mahabharata. Several attempts
were made to find the probable period of occurrence of incidents narrated in the text. The
probable period was predicted lying between 600 BCE and 5600 BCE according to research
works done by different eminent scholars. We have reviewed some important articles led by
the scholars and have tried to estimate a probable date relevant with archaeological, historical
and astronomical references. We have studied through three different angles and finally have
made the three to converge at a point of reference. Our work has estimated the date of starting
of the great Bharata war to be the 8th October 920 BCE [Gregorian] as the most probable date.
Keywords: Mahabharata, Kurukshetra, History, Archaeology, Astronomical software.
1. INTRODUCTION:
Before going to estimate a probable date of the Kurukshetra War which was believed to be
happened in transition between Dwapara Yuga and Kali Yuga, it is customary to investigate
the historicity of the Mahabharata. The Mahabharata is an outstanding epic of Indian
literature. It narrates detailed history of the Kuru dynasty. But an inevitable question always
arises whether the descriptions mentioned in the Mahabharata are fact or fictitious? So,
always there is a question mark whether the Mahabharata contains any historicity or it is a
simple epic novel? It is quite evident that there are several portions found in the Mahabharata
which seems to be extrapolated. But this extrapolation could not make any definite
conclusion so that a fictitious tag may be imposed with the Mahabharata. The doubt about the
historicity is just not only due to some kind of extrapolation but the critical estimate laid
down by foreign writers also put a question mark to the readers. They tried to enforce that the
Mahabharata along with the Puranas and the Vedas all are composed in the modern age. But
this opinion has not yet been established. It is believed that the Mahabharata is the oldest
classic of Indian literature and was composed by the sage Veda Vyasa.
2. HISTORICITY:
When the Mahabharata was composed there was no scope to keep any record of any
document in black and white. The composed verse was being spread from generation to
generation through preceptors. During the passage of long journey quote from memory
addition and alteration might be incorporated. This brings some extrapolations. Original text
suffers dispersion. It will be highly illogical to shadow the historicity of the creation simply
because of such extrapolation which was very common issue at that situation. Contemporary
literary evidences and astronomical observations laid us to believe that the Bharat war was
actually occurred in ancient time. So, the Mahabharata must have some historical
background. The date and time may be under investigation which is a different question and
we shall discuss that later. Though the existence of the Pandavas was not acknowledged by
the European critics yet it is beyond any doubt that Pandavas had a great role in history of the
Mahabharata. If we believe in the almighty Lord Krishna then we are to believe the Pandvas
as they are said to be associates of the Lord Krishna. European history writers also discarded
the war between Kauravas and Pandavas. According to them the war was fought between
Kauravas and Panchals. It is surprising that it was not known to them intentionally or
unintentionally that the wife of Pandavas, queen Draupadi was the daughter of Panchal king,
so it is quite justified that during the great Bharat war Panchal soldiers had joined with the
Pandavas. Hence Pandavas were there and finally they had won the war. The great Panini also
mentioned about all five Pandavas along with Kunti, Drona and Ashwatthama. It was written
around 1000BCE which is obviously after the Bharat war. So, existence of Pandavas and their
historicity may be acknowledged without any further confusion. In spite of several
extrapolations there is plenty of originality that is found in the Mahabharata with a lot of
historicity behind there. In fact, the historicity of any past event depends on contemporary
art, literature and inscriptions. At the time of Mahabharata availability of contemporary
literary evidence was almost scarce. Indian Vedic literature namely Vedas, Upanishad did not
mention anything about the Mahabharata. This is misleading. But if we think that the epic
Mahabharata was written after the Mahabharata incident then we could not ignore the
historicity of the Mahabharata. Now we shall discuss about the available sources of
historicity of the Mahabharata from archaeological inspections. B.B.Lal, an eminent
archaeologist between 1950 and 1952 had excavated the site of Hastinapura located near
Meerut in U.P. [5]. During his excavation several objects of daily use like cooking pots,
terracotta toys, glass bungles, Iron nails and copper utensils were revealed. Bidur tilas,
kitchen of Draupadi, mud house of common people were also excavated. From excavated
relics it may be believed that people of the then period lived their lives through agro oriented
works. The main approach of such excavation is to relate Painted Grey Ware with other
known ceramic industry of early historical period. The excavation ended up with a correlation
with the text Mahabharata and uncovered Hastinapura. As Hastinapura was the most
important site mentioned in the Mahabharata, so, this excavation had thrown a light to believe
some historicity of the Mahabharata. There have been also several excavations near Dwarka
which is believed to be the kingdom of Dwarkadhish Lord Krishna. Deccan College, Pune,
Department of Archaeology (1963), S.R.Rao (1979-80) from Archaeological survey of India
along with many other made such excavations near Dwarka [9]. It revealed many centuries
old artefact, distinct pottery known as lustrous red ware which could be nearly 3000 years
old. Several fragments were also discovered among which most of them were heavily
damaged. It is believed that Dwarka, the kingdom of Lord Krishna was ruined under the sea
after the departure of Lord Krishna. This is also acknowledged by the text Mahabharata.
Underwater Archaeology Wing [UAW] also inspected the spot under the sea and also nearby
lands. Alok Tripathi, superintending archaeologist of UAW could not arise to any definite
conclusion about the existence of so called Dwarkadhish kingdom. According to his team the
land structure founded from excavation may be of medieval period. In search of the sunken
city under the Arabian Sea research operation begun in 1973 and continued for almost 20
years without any fruitful solution of the fact. The excavation is still going on and it is
expected that tangle may be opened in future. But it is clear from such investigations that we
are not in a definite state to nullify the existence of ancient Dwarka and so the historicity of
the Mahabharata. Another important question has also been raised by the critics regarding the
relation of the Lord Krishna with the Mahabharata. It is fact that the text Mahabharata did not
explain the whole life of the Lord Krishna. But this does not proof the inexistence of the Lord
Krishna as a human being. Some critics specially the foreigners believed that the Lord
Krishna is a simple myth. So the Mahabharata could be analysed from mythological point of
view without any historicity. It is our failure that we are unable to find any definite proof of
the sunken Dwarka. But this could not force us to believe the Lord Krishna to be a
mythological character. The life and works of the Lord Krishna is exclusively narrated in
Bhagbata Purana and Harivamsam Puran. The Mahabharata also mentioned the role of the
Lord Krishna in pre and post war happenings as a strategists of the Pandavas, thus
acknowledged His human characteristics. So, finally, we are now not in a position to discard
the historicity of the Mahabharata. It may be assured that the information narrated in the
Mahabharata epic is not fully reliable, there may be a lot of extrapolation. The book which
we find now a day contain 100000 verses, earlier it was 24000 (Bharata) and still earlier it
was 8000 only (Jaya). This is the most important reason of such extrapolation in the text
Mahabharata, the authors in different ages went through accretion. Still it seems to us that the
Mahabharata contains a lot of historical elements which we need to discover in future.
3. FINDING THE DATE OF WAR:
Next we are to find a probable date of the Mahabharata war. Many such probable dates were
predicted by many scholars. Based on planetary positions mentioned in the Mahabharata a
number of tentative dates of war have been emerged out by using modern astronomical soft
wire. A wide range of the date of war has been predicted. To find the relevant date the great
astronomer of India, Aryabhatta in the 5th century CE was the pioneer. He mentioned in his
research work Aryabhattam that he was at the age of 23 when 3600 years of Kali Yuga had
passed. Historical references [Dixit (1968, Part II, p. 55)] calculated the period of
Aryabhattam to be 499 CE. So, Kali Yuga was started from 3102 BCE. This observation
helped the scholars to find the date of Mahabharata war around 3000 BCE. Other dates are
clustered around 2500 BCE and 800 BCE and even the relevant date was calculated by Dr.
P.V. Vartak as 5561 BCE. The recent data include 1478 BCE by Iyengar (2003) [2], 2559
BCE by Balkrishna (2003) [1], 3067 BCE by N. Achar (2003) [4] and 1793 BCE by
A.K.Bhatnagar (2017) [3]. Now, question arises why such diversity is found in calculating
the probable date of the Mahabharata war? One of the reasons of such diversity in
determinations by various authors may be due to ambiguous interpretation of the verses.
Simulation by using different soft wire may be another reason of such diversity where
repetition of planetary cycle was not followed with high precision. Narahari Achar has
mentioned in his paper that out of 200 publications in connection with determining the
probable date of the Mahabharata war half of them were based mainly on planetary
references. This is alarming. The planetary observations as mentioned in the Mahabharata
text may not be taken to be granted as authenticated. There is no doubt that there lies a lot of
extrapolation present in the text which we have today. So, planetary information which we
find today may not be away from some sort of extrapolation. Some important information
may also be lost in the course of lapse of 4000 to 5000 years. If we accept that Mahabharata
history occurred in the transition phase between Dwapara and Kali Yuga then there is every
possibility of information missing due to a large casualty in the war. Henceforth, depending
mainly on astronomical references determination of the date of Mahabharata war may be
misleading. Historical and archaeological references both are to be simultaneously considered
to find a most probable date of the Mahabharata war. In this paper we have considered
historical, archaeological along with astronomical references and have tried to converge the
three at a point.
3.1. ARCHAEOLOGICAL REFERENCES:
The archaeological observations made by B.B.Lal at Hastinapur which have been mentioned
in this article earlier may be used as a source of reference. The relics so found in his
excavation were strongly related with Painted Grey Ware Culture in India. The PGW is an
iron age of the Western Gangetic plain which lasted from 1200 BCE to 600 BCE. This culture
most probably correspondences to the late Vedic period. The Vedic period (1500 BCE to 600
BCE) in India lies between the decline of Indus valley civilization and beginning of Kuru and
Panchal kingdom. So, it is much expected that the iron-age related history could not be
extended beyond 1500 BCE. As it is related with Kuru Pandava, the tenure of Mahabharata
might be happened after 1200 BCE. More preciously it might be still later. There is another
evidence to be counted which was mentioned in Pauranic literatures [Matsya Purana and
Vayu Purana] that during the period of Pandava ruler Nichaksu, Hastinapur was flooded away
and the then king had shifted his kingdom from Hastinapur to Kaushambi. In order to support
it a verse can be used as reference. “Gangayapahrite tsmin nagare Nagasahavaye Tyakva
Nichaksur nagaram Kausambyam Sa nivatsyati’[6]. This verse clearly states that when the
city of Nagasahvya [Hastinapura] is carried away by the river Ganga Nichaksu the then ruler
will abandon it and will shift to Kaushambi. Archaeology not only revealed the flood but also
stated the settlement of Pandava kingdom in Kaushambi. That flood occurred around 8th to 9th
century BCE during the period of Pandava king Nichaksu who was the fifth descendent of
king Parikshit. So, period of Parikshit might be taken as around 9th to 10th century BCE. With
this basis we can make a layout of the relevant period within a range between 1200 BCE 800
BCE.
3.2. HISTORICAL REFERENCES:
In order to find a probable date of the war based on historical references we start with the
relevant verse as stated in Bhagabata Purana [Bhagabata Purana 9/12/36-48] that after
Parikshit 29 rulers empowered Pandava kingdom starting from Janamejaya till Kshemaka
who was overthrown by Mahapadma Nanda. Historical reference [12] has mentioned that the
commencement of Nanda dynasty was from around 362 BCE. Periods of individual rulers of
Pandava dynasty as mentioned in different texts are ambiguous. In this paper we have used a
statistical average of ruling period of the main powers that ruled India. Here we have
collected information from text books of ancient and modern history of India which are
furnished bellow:
TABLE 1
EMPIRE YEAR NUMBER OF
RULERS
TOTAL YEARS AVERAGE PER
RULER[YRS]
NANDA 362BCE-
321 BCE
2 41 20.50
MAURYA 321BCE-
185 BCE
9 136 15.11
SHUNGA 185 BCE –
73 BCE
10 112 11.20
KANVA 73 BCE –
26 BCE
4 47 11.75
GUPTA 319 CE –
550 CE
15 231 15.40
SATBAHAN 100 BCE –
181 CE
13 281 21.61
MUGHAL 1526 CE –
1707 CE
6 181 30.17
In calculating the Mughal period we have considered rulers up to Aurangzeb before decline
of the Mughal Empire which was started from Shah Alam. The mean of these averages for
seven dynasty as mentioned in the table comes out to be 17.96 yrs. Multiplying this mean
value by 29 we have 520.92. Thus age of king Parikshit may be around 883 BCE [362+521=
883]. If we consider maximum average as mentioned in the Mughal period, the age of
Parikshit comes to be 1237 BCE [30.17
°
29 + 362 = 1237]. Taking the average of
average of the last three dynasties mentioned in the table the relevant period converges to
1011 BCE [(15.4 + 21.61 + 30.17)/3 + 362 = 1011]. This result agrees well with the layout of
the Mahabharata period explained earlier from archaeological references. So, it can be
expected that relying on archaeological and historical references the Mahabharata war was
happened during the 10 to 11 century BCE.
Before going to a conclusion we have reviewed the works of different scholars. Firstly we
shall review the report based on Aihole inscription. The verse 33&34 of Aihole inscription
found in the Jain temple at Aihole constructed by Chalukya King Pulakeshi inscribed as
“TRINSHATSU TRISAHASRESHU BHAARATDAHAVADITAHA| SAPTABDA
SATAYUKTESHU GATESHWABDE SHU PANCHASU| PANCHSHATASU
KALAUKALE SHATASU PANCHASHATASU CHA| SAMATSU SAMATITASU
SHAKAANAMAPI BHOOBHUJAAM|. Many scholars have relied only on this verse to
estimate a probable date of Mahabharata war. The meaning of the verse was not even
assessed to be unique to the scholars. Making different meaning of the verse different dates of
war was estimated. These are 2538 BCE, 3101 BCE, 3138 BCE and 5376 BCE. The relevant
clarifications may be summarized. According to scholar it is believed that the said temple was
constructed after 3735 yrs from the war and in 556 Shakabda in Kali Yuga. As Shaka era
begins from 78 CE, the temple might be constructed in the year 634CE. So, the war took
place in the year 3101 BCE.
Dr P.V.Vartak have published a book [10] where he has estimated the relevant date of war to
be 16th Oct 5561BCE through rigorous stellar investigation along with the information made
in Aihole inscription verse. He meant that the temple was constructed 3030 yrs after the
Bharat war [first three words] and 755 yrs after commencement of Kali Yuga [next six words]
which is supposed to be started on 3101 BCE. So, the war happened on [3101-
755+3030=5376 BCE]. With this tentative idea he claimed the specific date to be 16 th Oct
5561 BCE relying on planetary consequences. The other two dates were calculated by
changing the verse in prose form and by making different meaning there after. As the dates
estimated from information gathered from Aihole inscription are widely separated, the
reliability of the inscription as a source of date calculation might not be fruitful.
3.3. ASTRONOMICAL REFERENCES:
Now, we shall examine the works of scholars those who estimated the date of war mainly
relied on matching planetary positions mentioned in the text by using different astronomical
soft ware. We have selected the following verses that deals with astronomical and relevant
references found in the text.
1. kaumude masi revatyam sard ante himagame
sphitasasyasukhe kale kalpah sattvavatam varah [Cr Ed 5.81/7 ]
In the month of Kaumuda (Kartika), under the Revati constellation, after the passing away of
autumn, and in the dewy season, and at a time when the earth had an abundance of crops on
it. This verse is related with the time when the Lord Krishna started to Hastinapur for a peace
mission.
2. agantavyam ca bhavata samaye mama parthiva
vinivrtte dinakare pravrtte cottarayane [Cr Ed 13.152/10]
When the hour comes for my departure from this world, you the king come here. The time
when I shall take leave of my body is that period when the sun will begin to return
northwards stopping his south-ward course of motion. This is related with demise of
Pitamaha Bhishma.
3. caturdasim pancadasim bhutapurvam ca sodasim. imam tu nabhijanami amavasyam
trayodasim. candrasurya ubhau grastav ekamase trayodasim. [Cr Ed 6.3/28, 29]
A lunar fortnight had consisted of fourteen days, or fifteen days (as usual), or sixteen days.
This, however, I never knew that the day of new-moon would be on the thirteenth day from
the first lunation, or the day of full-moon on the thirteenth day from the same. And yet in
course of the same month both the Moon and the Sun have undergone eclipses on the
thirteenth days from the day of the first lunation.
4. alaksyah prabhayahinaha paurnama karttikim. chandro
abhudagnivarnasca padma-varne nabhasthale [Cr Ed 6.2/23]
On even the fifteenth night of the lighted fortnight in the month of Kartika, the Moon,
divested of splendour, became invisible, or fire in the lotus coloured sky.
5. ahani yuyudhe bhismo dasaiba paramastravit
ahani panca dronas tu raraksa kuru vahinim. [Cr Ed 1.2/26]
Bhishma fought for ten days and Drona gave protection to kauravas for the next five days.
6. asta pancasatam ratryah sayanasadya me gatah
saresu nisitagresu yatha varsatam tatha. [Cr Ed 13.153/27]
I have been lying in my bed for 58 nights on these stretched sharp pointed arrows. I have felt
the entire period to be as long as a century.
7. distya prapto sikaunteya sahamatyo yudhisthira
parivrtto hi bhagavansahasramsur dibakaram
magho yam samanuprapto masah saumya yudhisthira
tribhagasesah pakso yam suklo bhavitumarhati [Cr Ed 13.153/26.28]
Bhishma told Yudhisthira, son of Kunti that He would depart from arrow bed when the sun
would start moving towards north leaving its southern motion. He also uttered that the month
Magha was on and after His departure from the earth, Magha would continue three fourth of
its tenure.
In references with these verses a tentative conclusion may be drawn that a back to back
eclipse were occurred within a span of 13 days during or before the Mahabharata war. It is
likely to be expected that a lunar eclipse was occurred in Kartika purnima in the same year.
As far as demise of Pitamaha Bhishma is concerned it is believed that he fought for 10 days
before falling in the battle field. He took rest lying on bed of sharp pointed arrows for 58 days
and then at the start of uttarayana he left this earth towards the heaven. The date of war may
be taken as 68 days before winter solstice of the relevant year to be considered. Beyond these
quotations many scholars have quoted a lot of verses specifically to relate with astronomical
references. The outcome of such investigations is summarized.
1. Krishna leaves on Revati nakshatra for a diplomatic peace mission.
2. Reach Hastinapur on Bharani nakshatra.
3. The diplomatic mission continued up to Pushya nakshatra.
4. Krishna left Hastinapur on Uttara Phalguni nakshatra.
5. Krishna and Karna ride together on a day when the Lord Krishna advised that seven days
from the then time new moon would occur which might be the best day to start the war
.
6. Karna noticed that the above date would be amavasya on Jyeshtha nakshatra and a solar
eclipse would occur.
7. Saturn would be then at Rohini.
8. Mars would be retrograde near Jyeshtha.
3.4. RELEVANT REFERENCES:
The above eight information altogether represent the span of not more than 15 days and most
of the scholars using planetarium soft ware relied on these 15 days observation. Astronomical
simulated results estimated the date of war beyond 2500 BCE in most of the researches, only
A.K.Bhatnagar estimated as 1793 BCE and Iyenger as 1478 BCE. Most of the scholars
reported in their papers that planetarium simulation accurately fixed the date mentioned in
respective papers with ditto matching with most of the information laid down in the text. If it
is so then how can the date differ to such a large extent? More over it is found from ancient
Indian historical journal and books that Indus valley civilization was supposed to be
happened around 2500 BCE which is recorded as the earliest civilization of India. Even the
scenario related with the great epic namely Hastinapur, Mathura, Dwaraka did not find any
existence during that period. As these names did not change with the course of time, it is
difficult to believe that the Mahabharata war was happened before 2500 BCE. Discarding the
results before 2500 BCE, still two important research works are left for further clarification,
1478 BCE by Iyengar (2003) and 1793 BCE by A.K.Bhatnagar (2017).
Iyengar (2003) has carefully explained the astronomical references in the epic, specifically,
the description of planets in Bhishma parva with both solar and lunar eclipse references. He
mentioned in his paper that celestial information given in the text is self contradicted. The
position of five naked eyed planets namely Saturn, Mars, Venus, Mercury and Jupiter were
not uniquely mentioned in the text. Interpretation would be obviously different and in fact
this is actually found in different research papers. Iyenger also agreed this. He tabulated two
series of double eclipse occurrence near Kurukshetra between 501 BCE and 3000 BCE when
the Saturn was near Rohini and Vishakha using planetarium soft ware. He also tried to find a
possible date of solar eclipse 15 year before and 35 years after the war. These are supposed to
be the periods of the end of dice game when the Pandavas went to exile for thirteen years and
the day when Dwarakadhish Lord Krishna departed. These two information need not to be
focussed right now as these have a lot of ifs and buts which requires further clarification.
Iyenger used a sequence of three eclipse as SE1 [solar eclipse on the war year], SE2 [on a
period 13to15 years before the war] and SE3 [35/36 years after the war]. Iyenger in his
course of work has shortlisted eight possible years for the Mahabharata War using Rohini
series of double eclipse [lunar and solar in a period around 13-14 days] where the Saturn was
near Rohini and a sequence of occurrence of three eclipses [SE1,SE2 and SE3] was given as
mentioned in the Mahabharata text. These are 505 BCE, 711 BCE, 798 BCE, 830 BCE, 1478
BCE, 2624 BCE, 2743 BCE and 2744 BCE. He also has made another shortlist of the same
sequence using data where the Saturn was at Visakha during solar eclipse occurred in the year
of the Mahabharata War. Here also occurrence of three eclipses [SE1, SE2 andSE3] is
mentioned. These years are 1198 BCE, 1493 BCE and 1932 BCE. Finally he used the
planetary reference given in the text (Bhishma parba) as Mars was between Jyeshtha and
Anuradha on a Kartika Krishna astami night when Karna and Lord Krishna went out together
before the war. Matching this tithi with soft ware Iyenger concluded the specific year of war
to be 1478 BCE. Making this tentative conclusion Iyenger was still not confident about the
consequence and he revisited the data where he changed the sequence of triple eclipses as
found in Visakha series from SE2 to SE1. This revisit could not change the situation and
ultimately he stood still on the year 1478 BCE as the most probable date of the Mahabharata
War.
Now, the question arises that is it justified to rely only on a specific planetary parameter
where Mars was between Jyeshtha and Anuradha on a specific night? The text also mentioned
position of the planet Mars under different constellation which was also accepted by Iyenger
himself. Actually we believe that planetary sequences mentioned in the text are not always
reliable to the highest perfection. The observation might be wrongly quoted in the text or it
might be tampered during a long journey of verses from 8000 to 100000 through oral
transformation. In this circumstances we could not be enough confident that the Mahabharata
War was happened in the year 1478 BCE as concluded by Iyenger.
Next, we shall review the work of A.K.Bhatnagar [2017] who has reported the relevant year
to be 1793 BCE. He also relied mainly on astronomical references. He has done an extensive
simulation work to relate planetary position on different dates as mentioned in the text. Dates
of autumnal equinox and winter solstice on specific years were also simulated to match
relevant verses as mentioned in the text. Another most important astronomical phenomenon
eclipses both lunar and solar were also simulated. Relying basically on simulation he arrived
at the conclusion. Though his work might be no doubt outstanding yet the conclusion as set
by him needs further confirmation. Some confusing data may be furnished. The Mahabharata
text mentioned,- “ catvarimsad ahanyadya dve ca me nihsrtasya vai. pusyena samprayato smi
sravane punaragatah”[Cr Ed 9.33/5]. This verse clearly states that Balarama set out for
pilgrimage under constellation Pusya and returned Kurukshetra under constellation Sravana
after spending forty two days since leaving home. He returned on the 18th day of the war to
witness the dual between his two favourite disciples Bhima and Duryodhana. In order to
match the simulation with the incidental dates Bhatnagar has reversed the order of relevant
constellation. He selected two dates 20th Sep 1793 BCE and 1st Nov 1793 BCE as date of
departure of Balaram and His date of return respectively in which he simulated and found
reverse order of constellation as Sravana and Pusya respectively. This does not agree with the
text verse. Again as far as planetary positions are concerned one finds in text that the same
planet was often associated with two widely separated nakshatras. Bhatnagar also accepted
this contradiction. But to handle the contradiction he has considered astrological references
where afflicting position of a specific planet was used and was made in agreement through
simulation work with the textual information. Now, a question may be raised whether sage
Vyasa was acquainted with astrological aspect or afflict of a planet in the then period. He
might state direct position of planet in its actual constellation. The different representation of
constellation of a particular planet at the same time might be due to some other reason.
During long course of journey some might interpret in different ways and made some
interpolation or extrapolation which found to be a casual feature in the Mahabharata text. It
might be accepted that people of the then period was not known about zodiac conception, so,
it might be expected that astrological reference was not used in the text. Even the scenario
which the text follows might not be the actual scenario. So, calculating the actual date of war
depending purely on astronomy and computation simulation might not yield any fruitful
result. Hence the date of war as 14th Oct 1793BCE estimated by Bhatnagar might not become
acceptable right at the moment.
3.5. RECONCILATION OF REFERENCES:
So, in order to arrive to a probable conclusion regarding the date of Mahabharata War we are
to reconcile historical, archaeological and astronomical references. As far as astronomical
references are concerned we are to be much careful in this contradictory situation. It would be
better to analyse the clues given in the text which are acceptable to any situation. The relevant
clues should not carry any disparity. We may definitely rely on the following information.
1. Pitamaha Bhishma departed on or just after winter solstice which was expected to be
occurred in the month of Magha.
2. He fell down in the battlefield on the 10th day of the war. He stayed in bed for 58 days. So,
time span between His demise to the heaven from the starting date of the war is clearly 68
days.
3. A double eclipses occurred in the vicinity of the war within a span of 13-14 days. Solar
eclipse occurred when both the sun and the moon was near Jyeshtha constellation.
4. Balarama started for pilgrimage under constellation Pusya and returned on 42nd day under
constellation Sravana. That very day was the final day of the war when a memorable dual was
fought between Bhima and Duryodhana being two great disciple of Balarama.
Two widely used information needs detailed investigation. The tithi of Bhishma’s demise was
whether Magha S8 or it was Magha K8, whether the great war was started on Kartika
purnima or Kartika amabasya or any other date else. Many scholars had interpreted that on
the 14th day of the war when Jayadratha was killed might be a day of solar eclipse occurred
momentarily. This has to be justified or nullified.
Using historical and archaeological references we have made a tentative conclusion that the
Mahabharata war was happened during the period of 10th to 11th century BCE. Let us now
find the dates of occurrence of double eclipses visible from Kurukshetra in the range of the
period mentioned above. The eclipse canon published by NASA [Espenak and Meus (2009)]
[8] provide necessary information of all eclipses occurred between -1999 to +3000 with
highest precision. The eclipse canon mentioned the dates of eclipses both lunar and solar
according to Julian calendar for the period of our interest. The specific dates can be easily
converted to Gregorian calendar accordingly as and when required for our survey. Using this
canon we have searched occurrence of double eclipse between 900 BCE and 1200 BCE
visible from Kurukshetra and the result is tabulated below:
TABLE 2
NO YEAR [BCE] LUNAR
ECLIPSE
SOLAR
ECLIPSE
POSITION OF
SATURN
1 974 19th OCT 4th OCT ROHINI
2 1122 5th OCT 21st SEP ROHINI
3 1154 3rd JULY 18th JUNE ASWINI
4 1181 1st JUNE 16th JUNE ROHINI
5 1183 27th JAN 12th JAN ASWINI
6 1198 4thNOV 21st OCT ANURADHA
Before reaching to a result we discuss the period of demise of Pitamaha Bhishma in a little
elaborately. According to verses related with Bhishma it is believed that Pitamaha left His
earthly soul on a date very close to winter solstice which is also related with Makara
sankranti. Makara sankranti is the last calendar day of the month Pausa which was also taken
as the day of beginning uttarayana or winter solstice in ancient period. Due to precision of
earth Makara sankranti does not always coincide with the winter solstice. According to
Gregorian calendar winter solstice is considered as a fixed date 22nd December with one or
two days plus minus. But the date of Makara sankranti changes regularly with time. Today it
occurs on 14th or 15th January. During 2600 CE it will be on 23rd January and during 1600 CE
it was on 9th January. This change agrees well with the rate of precision of earth which stands
as a shift of 1 day in 72 years. Mathematically it can be said that about 285 CE Makara
sankranti coincided with winter solstice that is it occurred on between 20th and 22nd December.
This conclusion holds well with the simulation result. Now, during the period of our search
on 900 BCE-1200 BCE, about 17 to 20 days shift on backwards of the said Makara sankranti
is likely to be expected. Thus during the period of our interest last day of the month Pausa fell
on around November 30 to December 5 [Gregorian]. Again a question may arise that the
people of the then period were whether believed uttarayana as the end of Pausa month or
winter solstice? The Mahabharata quoted that on the eve of demise, Pitamaha Bhishma
uttered that the month of Magha had come so the uttarayana was very near. He stressed on
Magha and uttarayana and not on winter solstice. The specific date of His demise was likely
to be within 7th-14th December according to our calculation. Going back to a period of 68
days the date of war comes out to be the end of September [end of Kartika] or very early
October [starting of Margasirsa] if we restrict ourselves on the tentative period of the war
predicted earlier.
Now let us try to match the situation with some stellar configuration. According to the
references with Balarama’s arrival after completion of pilgrimage on the 18th day of the war
was associated with Sravana nakshatra. So, the war was started in the constellation which was
18th day behind Sravana and 24th day ahead of Pusya. Both the calculations converge to
Mrigasira nakshatra. So, it could be assumed that the great Mahabharata War was started on
Mrigasira constellation; it might be the one or two days after full moon day of the month
Kartika when the moon was in Krittika nakshatra and on the starting date of the Mahabharata
War the moon was in Mrigasira nakshatra. With this assumption the next new moon would
occur at Jyestha nakshatra. The sun would then also stay at Jyestha nakshatra under Scorpio
as the sun and the moon occupy the same nakshatra on the day of new moon occurrence. The
Mahabharata informed that a solar eclipse occurred at Jyestha during or eve of the war. Our
calculation is in agreement with the text. It might be the date of Sindhraj Jayadrath’s death
when a momentary solar eclipse occurred near Kurukshetra at Jyestha nakshatra. After that
very day Pitamaha Bhishma stayed on earth for exactly 54 days. Using this reference the tithi
of the date of demise of Pitamaha Bhishma fell on Jyestha or Mula. It is now expected that
the specific date of demise of Pitamaha would be Krishna astami and not Shukla astami
which had been predicted by many scholars. The fact will be justified later.
4. RESULT AND DISCUSSIONS:
Detailed analysis of eclipses mentioned in the above table 2 did not match with the
information stated in the Mahabharata text. The said canon also indicates a year 920 BCE in
which a double eclipse occurred twice in the year as furnished below:
TABLE 3
SOLAR ECLIPSE [JULIAN DATE] LUNAR ECLIPSE [JULIAN DATE]
JUNE 11 920BCE MAY 27 920BCE
NOV 05 920BCE NOV 21 920BCE
Out of these four eclipses the solar eclipse of NOV 5 was visible from Kurukshetra. If we
use Gregorian calendar the date was OCT 21. Jayadrath was killed on the 14th day of the war.
If we take the date of solar eclipse visible from Kurukshetra as day 14 of the war, then the
war might be started on OCT 08, 920 BCE according to Gregorian calendar. According to
Julian calendar the war was started on OCT 23, 920 BCE. The Kartika purnima was occurred
on the 22nd day of OCT, 920 BCE at 15 hrs approximately at Kurukshetra. In that case the
difference between full moon and new moon happened to be 13 to 14 days gap which is in
agreement with the textual information. With this prediction the other important consequence
of the Mahabharata war as expected are explained below:
Jayadrath was killed by Arjuna on 21st October 920 BCE [Gregorian] being 5th NOV 920
BCE [Julian] which was the 14th day of the war. Using stellarium astronomical soft ware it is
observed that on that day a partial solar eclipse was occurred on the earth which was visible
from Kurukshetra region. The eclipse started on 16 hrs 41min 08 sec and continued up to 18
hrs 36 min 40 sec with maximum coverage of the sun occurred between 17 hrs 41 min 05 sec
and 17 hrs 42 min 08 sec at Kurukshetra with eclipse factor being 41.21% [Stellarium
software]. The time of the greatest eclipse was almost at the end of the day just before sunset.
The eclipse occurred at Jyestha nakshatra. The momentarily occurred eclipse might relax
Jayadrath to put him out of danger and when the setting sun came out again for a while,
Arjuna was able to keep his promise by killing Jayadrath as a revenge of death of Avimanyu.
This incidence was well agreed with the Mahabharata text where it was told that the Lord
Krishna played the trick by covering the sun for a moment by His great Sudarshan Chakra
which actually was an eclipse phenomenon. On that day positions of Jupiter, Saturn and
Venus were at Aries [Ashwini], Pisces [Revati] and Capricon [Uttarashara] respectively. The
war was ended with a dual between second Pandava Bhima and Kuru chief Duryodhana on
25th October 920 BCE [Gregorian] being 9th November 920 BCE [Julian]. This was the very
day when Balarama returned from pilgrimage. If the war was started on Mrigasira nakshatra,
then the nakshatra associated with the final day was clearly Sravana. This is in agreement
with the verse stated in the epic in connection with pilgrimage of Lord Balarama. It is found
from stellarium astronomical soft ware that on 25th OCT 920 BCE [Gregorian] which was 9th
NOV [Julian] the moon was in Sravana under Capricon zodiac. On 14th SEP 920 BCE
[Gregorian] being 29th SEP [Julian] the associated nakshatra was Pushya under Cancer
constellation. This date might be considered as the day when Balarama started for pilgrimage.
The epic mentioned that Balarama started for pilgrimage on Pushya nakshatra and returned
back on Sravana nakshatra. Our searching is in quite agreement with the text.
From the final day of the war Pitamaha Bhishma stayed on bed of arrows for 50 days more
before departing for heaven. A simple calculation could find the nakshatra of that date to be
Jyestha or Mula and the most probable date to be 14th December 920 BCE [Gregorian].
Astronomical software indicates that on 6th DEC 920 BCE [Gregorian] being 21st DEC
[Julian] a full moon was occurred at Pushya nakshatra which might be regarded as Pausa
purnima. On 14th DEC [Gregorian] which was 29th DEC [Julian] RA of the sun attained 18
Hrs at 15-57 PM clearly indicating the commencement of Uttarayan. On that day the sun was
at Sravana under Capricon and the moon was at Jyeshtha under Ophiuchus constellation lying
between Scorpio and Saggittarius which confirms our previous prediction. As far as solar
position is considered war was started when the sun was in Scorpio constellation and on the
date of demise of Pitamaha Bhishma the sun was in Capricon constellation. The sun entered
in the Capricon constellation on18th December 920 BCE [Julian] at 22hrs 00min 40 sec as
confirmed by stellarium soft ware. So, 18th DEC 920 BCE [Julian] or 3rd DEC 920 BCE
[Gregorian] might be considered as Makara sankranti of the year considered and from 19th
DEC 920 BCE [Julian] the month of Magha was in the picture. This is in agreement with our
earlier prediction where we have mentioned that considering precession of earth, the Makara
sankranti would occur between 30th NOV and 5th DEC [Gregorian basis] being between 15th
DEC and 20th DEC [Julian basis]. Pitamaha Bhishma also talked about the entry of the month
Magha during the time of His departure. If Bhishma fell in the battle on 10th day of the war
which was on 17th OCT [Gregorian] being 1st NOV [Julian] and the tithi was Krishna dashami
[K 10]. Then it is likely that Bhishma departed on Magha Krishna astami [K8] and not on
Shukla astami [S8] as predicted by many scholars.
Next we shall analyse the dates of visit of Lord Krishna to Hastinapur for peace mission. The
dates are chronologically furnished bellow using software based on Julian calendar and with
references of the text:
1. Krishna started for Hastinapur on 22nd SEP 920 BCE. The moon was then at Revati
nakshatra under Pisces.
2. Full moon occurred on 23rd SEP at Ashwini nakshatra when the sun was at Virgo
constellation, this day might be taken as Ashwini purnima.
3. Krishna reached Hastinapur on 24th SEP at Bharani nakshatra.
4. Krishna met Karna on 30th SEP at Ashlesha nakshatra under Cancer. The tithi of the said
date was Krishna astami. Karna told that a new moon would occur on seven days from then.
Actually new moon occurred on 7th OCT 920 BCE at Vishakha nakshatra under Libra
constellation which was seven days after meeting between Krishna and Karna. This agrees
well with the text.
5. After failure in peace mission the Lord Krishna left Hastinapur on 4th OCT 920 BCE. On
that day the moon was at Uttarfalguni nakshatra under Virgo constellation and the sun was
then at Libra constellation.
Finally we analyse the relevant date of the great Mahabharata war. Our calculation predicts
that the war was started on 8th OCT 920 BCE [Gregorian] being 23rd OCT 920 BCE [Julian].
The sun was then at Anuradha nakshatra under Scorpio and the moon was then at Mrigasira
under Tauras. On the previous day before the war a full moon occurred at Krittika nakshatra
which might be called Kartika purnima. The war thus happened to be started just after the
Kartika purnima.
One important point still remained unsolved. The epic stated the occurrence of back to back
eclipses. Actually it occurred in reality which we have mentioned earlier. Now we are to
unveil the fact. On 5th NOV [Julian] a visible solar eclipse was occurred near Kurukshetra and
on 21st NOV [Julian] lunar eclipse occurred on a full moon day [Margasirsa Purnima] which
was not visible at Kurukshetra. Another pair of eclipses occurred on MAY 27 and
June11within a gap of 14 days. The epic states the occurrence of a lunar period from new
moon to full moon as 13days. This statement can also be made justified. We have mentioned
that Kartika purnima occurred on 22nd OCT [Julian] at late afternoon. According to the
system of the then day calculation this date could be easily considered as 23 rd OCT as on that
time after sunset the next day used to come in picture. Next new moon occurred at 5th NOV
[Julian] which is clearly ahead of 13 days. This confirms a lunar period of 13 days as stated in
the text.
We have made analysis of Ashwini purnima, Kartika purnima and Pausa purnima using
astronomical soft ware but have not mentioned anything about Margasirsa purnima.
Stellarium soft ware also has thrown a light regarding this. Margasirsa purnima was occurred
on 21st NOV 920 BCE when the moon was in Mrigasira nakshatra under Gemini constellation
and the sun was in Mula nakshatra under Sagittarius constellation. A summarization of
important incidences relevant with the Mahabharata War is furnished below in a tabular form:
TABLE 4 [Using Stellarium soft ware]
DATE [JULIAN] EVENT POSITION OF
THE MOON
POSITION OF
THE SUN
22 SEP 920 BCE Krishna started for
Hastinapur
Revati Pisces
constellation
Virgo constellation
23 SEP 920 BCE
ASHWINI
PURNIMA
Ashwini Cet
constellation
Virgo constellation
24 SEP 920 BCE Krishna reached
Hastinapur
Bharani Aries
constellation
Virgo constellation
29 SEP 920 BCE Balaram started for
pilgrimage
Pusya Cancer
constellation
Virgo constellation
30 SEP 920 BCE Krishna met with
Karna
Ashlesha Cancer
constellation
Libra constellation
4 OCT 920 BCE Krishna left
Hastinapur
Uttarfalguni
Virgo constellation
Libra constellation
7 OCT 920 BCE New moon Vishakha Libra
constellation
Libra constellation
22 OCT 920 BCE KARTIKA
PURNIMA
Krittika Taurus
constellation
Scorpio
constellation
23 OCT 920 BCE War started Mrigasira Taurus
[K1] constellation
Anuradha Scorpio
constellation
1 NOV 920 BCE Fall of Bhishma Virgo [K10]
constellation
Oph constellation
5 NOV 920 BCE SOLAR ECLIPSE
fall of Jayadrath
Jyestha [K 14]
Oph constellation
Oph constellation
9 NOV 920 BCE End of the war.
Return of Balaram
Sravana Capricon
constellation
Oph constellation
21 NOV 920 BCE MARGASIRSA
PURNIMA
Mrigasira Gemini
constellation
Mula Sagittarius
constellation
21 DEC 920 BCE PAUSA
PURNIMA
Pusya Cancer
constellation
Capricon
constellation
29 DEC 920 BCE Departure of
Bhishma to heaven
Jyestha Oph [K8]
constellation
Sravana Capricon
constellation
In support of our result use of Saptarishis Calendar [7] may be employed. In Brihat Samhita,
chapter 13, sloka 3 it is mentioned that king Yudhisthira ruled the Pandava kingdom when
Saptarishis was in Magha nakshatra. The same note was found in Vishnu Purana when king
Parikshit was born Saptarishis was also in Magha. According to Saptarishis Calendar the
Saptarishis pointer was in Magha between 1177 and 210 BCE. So, the time of Mahabharata
war [920 BCE] as stated in this paper lies with the relevant span. The Vishnu Purana states
that when Saptarishis was in Purvashadha, the Nanda Dynasty started in India. This statement
cannot be properly explained using the Saptarishis Calendar as Saptarishis cannot be
expected to be in Purvashadha nakshatra until CE 8300. It is possible that this verse might be
wrongly interpreted; actually, it was in Purvafalguni and not in Purvashadha. If we accept
this, then the relevant period comes out to be after 210 BCE. According to ancient history
Nanda dynasty ruled between 362 BCE and 321 BCE which is in approximate agreement
with the calendar. According to Vishnu Purana (4th Amsa, 24th Adhyaya, 104th Sloka) [11],
1,015 years elapsed from the birth of King Parikshit to the rising of King Nanda (Wilson,
1840). In different copies of Vayu Purana, Matsya Purana and Bhagabata Purana this time
interval were mentioned to be 1,050 years, 1500 years and 1115 years respectively. If we
calculate the average of these three, the interval becomes 1221.67 years. In our calculation
this interval is less than 600 years. But this gap can be well explained. The Puranas had just
considered the time difference of movement of Saptarishis pointer from Magha to
Purvafalguni which is less than13.33 degree equivalent to 1333 years. But actual scenario
might be different; it may be 6 degree any value less than 13.33 degree also depending on the
actual position of the pointer on the date of Mahabharata war and on the date of Nanda
installation. So, it can be concluded confidently that our result also tallies with the use of
Saptarishis Calendar.
Before going to conclusion finally we want to justify our result with the date of demise of
Lord Krishna which is linked with the Mahabharata. It is mentioned in the Mahabharata that
after 35 yrs from the end of the great Kurukshetra war, a solar eclipse was occurred on earth
which was visible in India. On that day it is believed that Lord Krishna was departed to
heaven leaving His earthly soul. We have simulated the specific date to be the 13th JULY 885
BCE. On that day a total solar eclipse [partial in India] was occurred which was visible from
the north western part of India. According to our simulation the eclipse was visible from 16
hrs 35 min 54 sec to 18 hrs 32 min 20 sec. The maximum eclipse factor was found to be
97.58% visible from 17hrs 36 min52 sec to 17 hrs 37 min 12 sec. So, this day could be
considered as the day of departure of almighty God Krishna from His human soul. The
planetary position on that day at 17hrs 37 min may be furnished below:
TABLE 5 [Using stellarium soft ware]
NAME ECLIPTIC LONGITUDE CONSTELLATION
SUN 101 DEG 16 MIN 18 SEC LEO
MOON 101 DEG 17 MIN 20SEC LEO
JUPITER 332DEG 57 MIN 00SEC PISCES
VENUS 117 DEG 35 MIN 09SEC LEO
MARS 338 DEG 26 MIN 20 SEC PISCES
MERCURY 126 DEG 35 MIN40 SEC LEO
SATURN 57 DEG 11 MIN 00 SEC GEMINI
The above simulation is in well agreement with information laid down in the Mahabharata
text in connection with earthly departure of Lord Krishna. So, the date of the Mahabharata
war assessed in this work may be justified as a most probable date to a large extent.
5. CONCLUSION
In this work we have primarily considered archaeological information which resulted to a
tentative period of the Mahabharata war between 800 BCE and 1200 BCE. Then we have
adopted historical references collected from text books and after making some statistical
average of tenure of period in connection with several dynasties we have reduced the
tentative span of the Mahabharata war lying between 10th and 11th century BCE. Then some
astronomical references were taken in to account. We have mainly emphasised on the
occurrence of uttarayan nearly on the day of demise of Bhishma. We also emphasised on a
solar eclipse visible from Kurukshetra in the afternoon on 14th day of the war when Jayadrath
was killed. With this information along with other relevant information found in the text the
most probable date of the great Mahabharata War was estimated to be the 8th October 920
BCE [Gregorian] just after the Kartika purnima. This is in well agreement with
archaeological research and historical evidences. We did not pay much attention of all the
astronomical references made in the text as we think which might not be actually happened.
These might be the part of some extrapolation which is very likely as found everywhere in
the epic Mahabharata. In this article we have also given some ideas relying mainly on
archaeological evidences laid by different eminent archaeologists and from various
archaeological research works done by different institutes in India around the places relevant
with the Mahabharata scenario. Though a vivid work is still left for confirmation of the
historicity of the Mahabharata, yet we can definitely conclude that the epic Mahabharata
contains a lot of historicity behind the screen.
6. ACKNOWLEDGEMENT:
1. The Mahabharata text published by Bhandarkar Oriental research Institute [BORI], Critical
Edition may be well used as a reference tool for pursuing research work on the Mahabharata.
In this paper we have quoted the relevant verses from critical edition of the Mahabharata text
published by Bhandarkar Oriental research Institute.
2. Kishori Mohan Ganguly was the real architect of making translation of the Mahabharata in
English. His work helped us a lot in studying and in framing a lay out to our research work on
the Mahabharata as a whole. We are grateful to him and his associates.
3. We also acknowledge the contribution of Gita Press, Gorakhpur for publishing Sankshipt
Mahabharat in 2 volumes compiled by Jaydayal Goendka. A brief summary of the incidents
related with the epic Mahabharata is well explained in this two volumes which helped us a
lot.
4. Now a day, sky simulation astronomical soft ware is used as an effective tool of
computational simulation. In this work we have used Stellarium 0.17.0 soft ware for
computational simulation. We acknowledge Ashok K Bhatnagar for furnishing reliable
suggestion in his paper [3] in using astronomical soft ware for simulation. We have primarily
mentioned Julian calendar in connection with relevant dates in our simulation work using
Stellarium soft ware.
7. REFERENCES
1. Dr. S. Balakrishna: Astrology, Dating Mahabharata- Two Eclipses in Thirteen Days, 23rd
Feb 2002.
2. R.N.IYENGER: INTERNAL CONSISTENCY OF ECLIPSES AND PLANETARY IN
THE MAHABHARATA, IJHS, 38.2(2003) 77-115
3. Ashoke K Bhatnagar: Date of Mahabharata War Based on Astronomical References - A
Reassessment, IJHS, 52.4 (2017) 369-394
4. B.N.Narahari Achar: University of Memphis, New Delhi 2012: Historicity of Mahabharata
war, astronomical methods using planetarium software.
5. Prof. B.B.Lal: Historicity of Mahabharata: Evidence of literature, Art and Archaeology,
May 2013
6. Prof. B. B. Lal: Mahabharata Historicity –slide presentation at the international seminar on
Mahabharata organized by Draupadi Trust in April 12, 2012 at New Delhi.
7. Buddhike S. H. Indradsena: THE SAPTARISHI CALENDER, “INDIAN TROPICAL
ZODIAC”, Journal of Astronomical History and Heritage, 18(2), 190-198 (2015).
8. Eclipse canon published by NASA [Espenak and Meus (2009)]
9. B. U. Nayak and S. R. Rao: Existence and Location of Dwarka city of Mahabharata and its
subsequent submerged, A Reality or A Myth? New trend in Indian Art and Archaeology, 1992
-2-page 479 to 491
10. Dr. P.V.Vartak: Scientific dating of Mahabharata war, Ramayana & Vedas, 1st edition 1989
CE
11. Vishnu Purana: Gita press, Gorakhpur, U.P.
12. Romila Thapar: The Penguin history of early India.
ASTRONOMICAL SOFTWARE REFERENCES:
Ref 1:
POSITION OF SUN ON 5TH NOV 920 BC at 17/42/03 Hrs
Clear indication of solar eclipse
Ecliptic longitude of sun 215 degree 01 min
Position of moon
ecliptic longitude 215 dgree 01 min (appx) – same as sun indicating existence of new moon
(ilumination 0%)
Ref 2:
Existence of Aswini purnima on 23 rd Sep 920 BC
Position of moon
Illumination 98.9% -indication of full moon.
Ecliptic longitude 2 degree 54 min- indicates that moon in Aswini , so relevant purnima is
Aswini.
Ref 3:
New moon (07/10/920BC) took place seven days after meeting of Karna with Krishna
Ecliptic longitude 186 degree 44 min
Ecliptic longitude 185 degree 16 min -almost same as moon – indication of new moon.
Ref 4:
Balaram’s departure and arrival in connection with pilgrimage
It is mentioned in the epic that Balaram started for pilgrimage on Pusya nakshatra and
returned on sravana after 42 days (page 9). Our simulation has established two specific dates
as 29th Sep and 9th Nov with a clear gap of 42 days.
Position of moon on 9/11/920BC
Moon in Capricon , postion of Nakshatra -sravana.
42 days back it was clearly pusya on 29th Sep 920 BC.
According to reviewer Balaram went after Krishna’s return from Hastinapur. If it is so then
Bararam should return after the completion of war. But Balaram was present on the final day
of war.
Ref 5 :
Kartika purnima 22nd Oct 920 BCE
Position of moon on 22/10 Illumination 99.8%
Ecliptic longitude 25 degree – Krittika nakshatra for corresponding purnima (end of Bharani
means Krittika to settle purnima month
Ref 6:
Position of moon on 23rd October (starting day of war) Taurus Aldeberon nakshtra
Mrigasira
Ecliptic longitude 38 degree
... The philosophy of karma, known as karma yoga is attributed to the Bhagavad Gita [21]- [23]. The transmission of the Bhagavad Gita has been through oral tradition for thousands of years, from the event of the Mahabharata war in India, with recent estimates around 5100 years ago [24], [25]; however, the exact dates have been debated in the literature with some scholars dating it to around 2500 -3500 years ago [26], [27]. We need to note that scholars believe that the Mahabharata was written in ancient Sanskrit where as the Bhagavad Gita has been written in modern Sanskrit; hence, some scholars argue that Bhagavad Gita was later inserted into the epic Mahabharata [20], [28]. ...
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It is well known that translations of songs and poems not only break rhythm and rhyming patterns, but can also result in loss of semantic information. The Bhagavad Gita is an ancient Hindu philosophical text originally written in Sanskrit that features a conversation between Lord Krishna and Arjuna prior to the Mahabharata war. The Bhagavad Gita is also one of the key sacred texts in Hinduism and is known as the forefront of the Vedic corpus of Hinduism. In the last two centuries, there has been a lot of interest in Hindu philosophy from western scholars; hence, the Bhagavad Gita has been translated in a number of languages. However, there is not much work that validates the quality of the English translations. Recent progress of language models powered by deep learning has enabled not only translations but a better understanding of language and texts with semantic and sentiment analysis. Our work is motivated by the recent progress of language models powered by deep learning methods. In this paper, we present a framework that compares selected translations (from Sanskrit to English) of the Bhagavad Gita using semantic and sentiment analyses. We use hand-labelled sentiment dataset for tuning state-of-art deep learning-based language model known as bidirectional encoder representations from transformers (BERT). We provide sentiment and semantic analysis for selected chapters and verses across translations. Our results show that although the style and vocabulary in the respective translations vary widely, the sentiment analysis and semantic similarity shows that the message conveyed are mostly similar.
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Date of Mah?bh?rata War Based on Astronomical References?A Reassessment
Astrology, Dating Mahabharata-Two Eclipses in Thirteen Days
  • . S Dr
  • Balakrishna
Dr. S. Balakrishna: Astrology, Dating Mahabharata-Two Eclipses in Thirteen Days, 23 rd Feb 2002.
  • R N Iyenger
R.N.IYENGER: INTERNAL CONSISTENCY OF ECLIPSES AND PLANETARY IN THE MAHABHARATA, IJHS, 38.2(2003) 77-115
Lal: Historicity of Mahabharata: Evidence of literature, Art and Archaeology
  • B B Prof
Prof. B.B.Lal: Historicity of Mahabharata: Evidence of literature, Art and Archaeology, May 2013
Lal: Mahabharata Historicity -slide presentation at the international seminar on Mahabharata organized by Draupadi Trust in April 12
  • B B Prof
Prof. B. B. Lal: Mahabharata Historicity -slide presentation at the international seminar on Mahabharata organized by Draupadi Trust in April 12, 2012 at New Delhi.
Ref 1: POSITION OF SUN ON 5TH NOV 920 BC at 17/42/03 215 dgree 01 min (appx) -same as sun indicating existence of new moon (ilumination 0%) Ref 2: Existence of Aswini purnima on 23 rd Sep 920 BC Position of moon Illumination 98.9% -indication of full moon
  • Astronomical
  • References
ASTRONOMICAL SOFTWARE REFERENCES: Ref 1: POSITION OF SUN ON 5TH NOV 920 BC at 17/42/03 215 dgree 01 min (appx) -same as sun indicating existence of new moon (ilumination 0%) Ref 2: Existence of Aswini purnima on 23 rd Sep 920 BC Position of moon Illumination 98.9% -indication of full moon.