What did Dr.Paira Mall buy for Rs.229 for London Museum in 1911? (Post No.4704)

Date: 5 FEBRUARY 2018


Time uploaded in London- 7-03 am


Compiled by London swaminathan


Post No. 4704








Paira Mall was a doctor born in India and trained in Europe. He was sent to India by Henry Wellcome to collect medical treasures from India. Henry wanted him to collect the books in manuscripts or translations and important herbs. He was one of the several agents Henry employed for collecting valuable materials for his research museum. Paira Mall spent 11 years in India and he was in regular correspondence with Mr C J S Thompson, the curator of Museum.


There is a list of things Mr Mall bought in Sri Nagar, Kashmir. It makes a very interesting list and shows what type of things were collected from different parts of the world by Henry Wellcome. Here is the list of things (displayed in Ayurvdic Man Exhibition in London)  he bought in 1911 for 229 rupees 4 annas:


Rupees- Annas

One Kashmiri cap with Silver charms –  21- 00

One Brass Amulet necklace                     –       3- 8

1 red Lingam                                                            –           3-8

1 very old stone Hindu medical deity     4-00

Tibetan Stone tablet with Mantra                     3-12

1 Persian manuscript with pictures       14-00

1 Persian manuscript, Animal logic                   4-00

6 jade engraved charms

against several diseases                                      18-00

1 old Persian medical manuscript            12-00

1 Hanuman sketch                                                 2-00

2 forehead silver charms with

Koran Verses –                                                                     14-4

1 kollyrium silver holder for eyes            8-00

1 hollow amulet                                                     1-4

1 silver yantra coin                                                            5-00

2 barber knives                                                       3-00

3 Deity pictures                                                      4-00

1 circumcision apparatus                         2-0

3 coins with Kalma engraved                              4-00

1 very ancient manuscript on bark                   35-00

2 pictures of snake worship-                              2-00

3 Very old Persian manuscripts              15-00

2 old Arabic medical manuscripts                     25-00

Gratuity one Mohammedan Hakim      1-00

Agent                                                                         2-00

Picture of Navayana                                              2-00

4 Sharada manuscripts                                         20-00



Total                                                                           229-4


This receipt was signed by Paira Mall and sent to London.



It is very interesting to see what were the objects Henry Well come was interested in. Anything to do with cures, medical beliefs and cures for snake bites and other diseases.









Mother in Law becomes a Donkey! Tamil Folk Tale (Post No.4585)

Written by London Swaminathan 


Date: 5 JANUARY 2018


Time uploaded in London- 20-56


Post No. 4585

Pictures shown here are taken from various sources such as Facebook friends, Books, Google and newspapers; thanks.

Related image


There are over 20,000 proverbs in Tamil language; hundreds of them have beautiful stories behind them. One interesting story about a mother in law is based on a popular proverb – ‘As the time went by Mother in Law became a donkey!’ (Vara vara maamiyaar Kazuthai pola Aaanaalam)


The story is as follows:

There lived a couple in a village. Ammanji had a wife by name Vallala Kandi. The very name of the woman shows that she was an unruly woman; a bad- tempered woman. There were always shouts and fights in the house. The man’s name show that he was a naïve man. Both of them had their mothers living with them. They also fought with one another.

Ammanji’s mother got fed up with what was happening inside the house. One day Amannji’s mother ran away from home and took shelter in a temple far away from the madding crowd. Since it was dark nobody noticed her departure.


During mid night, Goddess Kali in the temple started for a city round. She saw this old woman and asked what brought her to the temple. She explained everything happening at home. Kali was very kind towards her and told her she would be alright if she ate the mango fruit. Saying so Goddess gave her a mango fruit.


In the meantime, Ammanji got worried about her mother went in search of her at the first light of the day. Someone told him that he saw an old woman in the Kali temple. Ammanji ran to the temple and came to know everything happened in the night. Ammanji was given the fruit but he refused and insisted his mother should eat it. She ate it and had a piggy back ride on her son Ammaanji. He was feeling her rough skin; but as the time went by, he felt smoother and smoother skin. He turned back and was wonderstruck when he saw his mother. She looked younger now. When she went home, he saw her completely  changed and became a young woman. Ammanji, his wife and mother in law couldn’t believe their own eyes.


Ammanji’s wife was a bit jealous and planned something in her mind. Next day she told her mother—Ammanji’s mother in law – – to run away from home. She did so and took shelter in the same temple. Kali appeared before her asked her the reason. When she told Kali about her ‘sufferings’, Kali knew that it was a lie. But Kali gave her a mango fruit and told her everything would change  when she eat the fruit. She hurriedly ate the mango.

In the meantime Ammanji’s wife became very anxious and persuaded her son to go out and look for her mother. Ammanji came straight to the temple and met her mother in law. By the time he came there, she finished eating her mango fruit.


As before, Ammanji offered her a lift home. She had a piggy back ride. To Ammanji’s surprise the body weight of the lady slowly increased and her skin became rougher and rougher. When he turned back, he saw a lady with a donkey’s face; He tried very hard to supress his laughter. When they reached home, he didn’t see his mother in law at all, but only a donkey. Ammanji and his mother were happy. Ammanji’s wife and mother in law were sad.


This gave birth to a proverb, “As the time goes by mother in law became a donkey”.




Ten Greatest Literary Wonders (Post No.4582)

Written by London Swaminathan 


Date: 4 JANUARY 2018


Time uploaded in London- 20-24




Post No. 4582

Pictures shown here are taken from various sources such as Facebook friends, Books, Google and newspapers; thanks. Some picturers were used from Brahmi by Ankhita Roy and Malay mandal



Wonder 1

India is a land of wonders. It is a land of literary wonders. Take any subject; It is in the first place; but this article is about the language, literature and linguistics. Nowhere in the world we see 900 plus poets 2000 years ago. We have all the names of the poets and their poems intact. Vedic anukramani gives a list of 435 poets and the Tamil Sangam literature gives a list of approximately 470 poets. We have 1028 hymns containing 10,600 verses or mantras in the Rig Veda alone. It is the oldest book in the world. It is the oldest anthology in the world. Tamil Sangam had 470 poets who had composed 2380 poems. Rig Veda was there at least 4000 years ago when Sarasvati was flowing from the Himalayas to the sea. Tamil Sangam literature came 2000 years after the Vedic poems. Post-Vedic poets prepared the Index- the first in the world.

What does it show? It shows that India, that is Bharat, was the most civilized country and most literate in the ancient world. This also shows that all other civilizations such as Babylonian, Egyptian and Chinese came later. Because literature is the scale with which can measure the wisdom, knowledge and maturity of a society. To reach such a level of intelligence, the community should have lived there several thousand years before that literary production.


Wonder 2


Women wrote Poems!

The literacy and progressive thoughts of the Hindus is highlighted by at least 50 poetesses, which is not seen anyhere in the world. Oldest book Rig Veda has more than 20 poetesses. Sangam literature which came 2000 years after the Vedas has another 25 Tamil poetesses.

This galaxy of intellectuals show that no civilization came nearer to the Hindu civilization.

Women were so educated that they attended the debating societies and (Gargi Vachaknavi) questioned great philosopher such as Yajnavalkya. In Tamil poetess Avvaiyar was fearless in questioning the war mongering Tamil kings.

Wonder 3

The Vedic literature was huge. In every culture, there is a time gap between the poetry and prose. In Sanskrit, four Vedas with 20,000 verses and a huge mass of prose literature ( Brahmanas and Aranyakas) came well before the Greeks started writing. Tamils wrote 2000 years after the Sanskrit poets. The great wonder about this bulky literature is that they passed it by word of mouth until today, at least for 4000 years!


Wonder 4

Another literary wonder is the production of Upanishads – the philosophic treatises- before other philosophers of the world. Moses, Zoroaster, Mahavira, Confucius, Buddha—all came after the Upanishads according to the Hindu dating of the Upanishads.


Wonder 5

In those Upanishads we have a long list of Gurus – over 50 generations of teachers- who passed the wealth of knowledge. That shows how old our teaching is. And in the Puranas (mythologies) we have 140 generations of kings. Longest and continuous list which the world has ever seen. Sumeraian and Egyptian king lists were made up by scholars like Berosus of 2nd century BCE. There are big gaps.. In spite of dry climate helping them to preserve 60,000 clay tablets and Egyptian writings on papyrus the list is incomplete. Together with the Upanishadic list of hereditary teachers and Puranic list of 140 generations before Megasthenes, we stand in the front. These Hindu scriptures are another literary wonder.


Wonder 6

The inscriptions of Emperor Asoka was a great literary wonder. Suddenly we see Brahmi script from Afghanistan to the southernmost part of Sri Lanka—biggest geographical mass—the largest country in the world. This happened 2300 years ago. That means Indians were literate from Kashmir to Kandy in Sri Lanka. Unless they could read Asoka would not have installed so many inscriptions.



Wonder 7


The Brahmi script itself is a great wonder. Though some scholars think that it was derived from Phoenician, the undeniable fact is that it is very different from those Semitic scripts. Brahmi script is alphabetical and scientifically arranged. It followed Paninian phonetics. The greatest wonder abbot the Brahmi script is that it gave the scripts, the glyph to all the languages of South East Asia and South and North India.


Wonder 8

Hindus were first in all the literary ventures whether its wring stories or wring sex manuals. The first grammar book was from Panini of seventh century BCE. The world is wonderstruck with the conciseness of Ashtadyayee of Panini. This grammar book is considered a wonder of human thought


Wonder 9

Language and linguistics are dealt with even in a religious book like Rig Veda. Similes, number symbolism, metaphors using literary subjects show the level of knowledge in the Vedic society. I have already written about the Vedic lingustics and four types of sounds and hymns on Vac—the speech. Higher thoughts and world welfare were dealt n the hymns. The last hymn of the Rig Veda prays for the integration. It can serve as the World National Anthem or the UN national Anthem. The hymns on Earth in the Atharva Veda  can serve as the anthem for all the environmental organisations.

Please see below the relevant hymns:

Language and Linguistics

RV 1-164, 4-58, 8-59, 8-100, 10-71, 10-114, 10-125, 10-177



RV 1-164, 10-71, 4-3, 10-125


World Welfare

10-191, , YV 36, AV 19-60, AV 7-69, AV 3-30,



Wonder 10

Hindus stood first in the production of dictionaries, thesauruses such as 2000 year old Amarakosham. In every field of language they stood first. The Vedic prosody is also highly developed. The syllabus had six different subjects including etymology, grammar and astrology/astronomy. This is also another indication of highly developed culture.


Linguistics | Tamil and Vedas


Vedic Hindus were highly educated. We come across many linguisticobservations in all the four Vedas. Rig Veda, the oldest book, has many hymns dealing with linguistic points. Satyakam Varma has summarised them in his book Vedic Studies. Rig Vedic hymns 1-164, 4-58, 8-59, 8-10, 10-114, 10-125, 10-177 and many …



23 Oct 2017 – Written by London Swaminathan Date: 23 October 2017 Time uploaded in London- 20–15 Post No. 4329 Pictures shown here are taken from various sources such as Facebook friends, Books, Google and newspapers; thanks. We know that the Rig Veda is the oldest religious book in the world; we know…




2 Dec 2017 – The Rig Vedic hymn 1-164 is a great hymn. Probably that is the longest hymn in the oldest book in the world with 52 mantras. It is like an encyclopaedia touching various subjects. It is a riddle because the poetDirgatamas has used lot of numbers which can be interpreted in many ways. In fact Wilson, Max …

Strange Names for Unknown Poets of Rig Veda … – Tamil and Vedas


14 Dec 2014 – Research paper written by London Swaminathan Research article No.1486; Dated 14th December 2014. Some poets have got strange names in the Rig Veda as well as in Sangam Tamil literature. Some of thepoets are named after the epithets they use. There is a reason behind it. Shrikant G.Talageri, in …

You visited this page on 03/01/18.

Poetry in Vedas | Tamil and Vedas


By London Swaminathan. Rig Veda, the oldest religious book in the world, has beautiful poetry in it. The Vedas are records of man’s earliest thoughts on God and philosophical matters. When the Vedic seers wanted to convey their thoughts they used lot of similes as well. Vedas can be interpreted symbolically, …

Big Bang in the Rig Veda! (Post No.4235) | Tamil and Vedas


22 Sep 2017 – The Big Bang is described in the Rig Veda 6000 or 7000 years ago. Cosmologists wonder that such a thought occurred to one or two seers on the banks of River Sarasvati in India. Hindus are great cosmologists that the same creation is described in several Brahmanas, Puranas and Manau Smrti as well.




How did Akbar’s Son murder a Great Writer? (Post No.4576)

Written by London Swaminathan 


Date: 2 JANUARY 2018


Time uploaded in London- 19-22



Post No. 4576

Pictures shown here are taken from various sources such as Facebook friends, Books, Google and newspapers; thanks.



Killing journalists and writers in modern times hits the headline in newspapers. One reason for this is journalists belong to those newspapers. So these news stories get good publicity. Another reason is the opposition parties are waiting for some murder or mayhem so that they can get good political mileage from this violence. But there was a time in Indian history these things went unnoticed.


Moghul rule is notorious for fratricide and patricide. Apart from these killing of close relatives, writers were also killed in a planned manner. Salim, Moghul emperor Akbar’s son, made plans for the murder of Abul Fazl, famous poet of the period.


How and Why?

When Akbar was over 60 years of age around 1600 CE, he appointed his eldest son Salim (who was known as Emperor Jahangir later) as the Vice Royal of Allahabad. He had access to lot of revenue and he declared himself as an independent monarch. He struck coins of gold and copper and sent them to his father Akbar. Akbar was very angry and wanted his son to be learn economics. Afterwards he wrote to his trusted minister Abul Fazl to take steps to bring Salim to reason. Abul Fazl was the author of Akbar Nama (life history of Akbar) and Ain-i- Akbari.

Abul Fazl started at once to Agra to meet Akbar. In the meantime, Salim came to know about it and he planned to waylay him. He made a plot with Birsingdeo (Veera Simha Deva) whose territory lay across the Moghul highway to North. Birsingdeo was the ruler of Orcha Kingdom. He was not in good terms with Akbar.


Though Abul Fazl received some warnings he ignored them and proceeded to Agra. He never thought that Salim would kill him.


Between Narwar and Antri, not far from Gwalior (M.P.), Birsingdeo was waiting with 500 armed men and the conflict was unequal. Abul Fazl was killed and his head was sent to Salim (later Jahangir). Later Salim tried to justify his murder on the ground that Abul Fazl plotted against him and he prevented a reconciliation between him and his father Akbar.

Jahangir (Salim) wrote in his Memoirs, “By God’s grace, when Shaikh Abul -i- Fazl was passing through Birsingdeo’s territory, the Raja blocked his road and after a little contest, scattered his men and killed him. He sent his head to me in Allahabad”.


Akbar was furiously angry at the crime and gave orders to hunt down Birsing Deo. But he disappeared into the forests before Akbar’s army captured the fort of Orcha.

When Salim became Emperor Jahangir, Birsing Deo was restored to high honours. Jahangir made him the Ruler of Orcha in place of his elder brother, and gave him the exalted rank of Commander of Five Thousand.



Birsing Deo– A Hero!

Birsing Deo’s name deserves to be rescued from the oblivion into which it has lapsed, on account of the splendid buildings he left to posterity. He built a beautiful temple at Muttra which was later destroyed by Aurangzeb. He built palaces at Orcha and Datia. It is said that he built 52 temples and palaces. In an auspicious hour fixed by the astrologers he laid the foundations for those 52 structures. Some of them include the palaces at Orcha, Datia,the templs at Orcha and Chatarburj, fortress of Dhamoni, the Jhansi citadel and many bridges. He was a great builder.

His own tomb, above he Betwa at Orcha, is a gigantic square stone edifice flanked by  massive towers and surmounted by a huge dome. The sword with which he cut off Abul Fazl’s head is in the State Armoury at Tikamgarh.


After their deaths, Birsing Deo and his son Hardol Lala attained the status of demi gods. Hardol Lala became more famous owing to his tragic fate, which fired the popular imagination. He was unjustly accused by his brother Jhujar Singh, then the chief of Orcha, of having illicit intimacy with his wife and he  was compelled to drink the poison of Datura plant.

Akbar worshipping sun

The ghost of Hardol Lala was feared and propitiated by the peasantry of Bundelkhand; he became a popular saint, worshipped at weddings and in epidemics of cholera; a temple was built for him at Datia, and a shrine outside every village in the region; and the cult spread as far north as Lucknow.





Tamils and Chanakya attack Yavanas! (Post No.4565)

Roman wine picture

Research Article Written by London Swaminathan 


Date: 30 DECEMBER 2017 


Time uploaded in London- 8-18 am



Post No. 4565

Pictures shown here are taken from various sources such as Facebook friends, Books, Google and newspapers; thanks


Chanakya in his Niti Shastra attack Yavanas like the Tamils. One of the most powerful Tamil kings Imayavaramban Netuncheralathan punished Yavanas by shaving their heads and pouring oil on the heads 2000 years ago. (Please see full details in my earlier research articles in the links given at the bottom).


But who are the Yavanas?


In Tamil literature it denotes Romans and Greeks. In later Tamil literature, the words milecha and Yavanas were used for Romans, Greeks and Arbas may be Persians. Both Kalidasa and Tamil poet mentioned the Yavana wine. In Shakuntalam and Raghu Vamsa it refers to the wine produced by the Persians. Both Tamil and Sanskrit poets used them for guarding the harem, war camps and gates of the palaces. The Yavana women were used as maids in the palaces.


Let us look at what Chanakya says about the Yavanas (Greeks)  first!


“The wise who know the reality have proclaimed that even one Yavana is equal to thousands of Candalas (untouchables) There is no one more lowly than a Yavana”.

–Chanakya Niti , Chapter 8, Sloka 5


Chaadaalaanaam sahasraischa suuribistatvadarsibihi

eko hi yavanah prokto na niicho yavanaat parah


Satya Vrata Sastri who translated Chanakya Niti, says in the introduction:

“The Caanakya Niiti provides a good glimpse of the contemporary thinking. The time it was composed was marked by intense hatred for the Yavanas, the Greek or for that matter all the foreign invaders, who were out to subjugate the country with their life style running counter to that of the locals – mark the expression ‘Sayanaa Bhunchathe Yavanaah, ‘the Yavanas partake the food while lying’, a practice abhorring to high-bred Indians of the time.


The Yavanas through their unseemly behaviour, this is how one can infer it, invited on themselves the curse of the locals who would not take them kindly as evidenced by such expressions as ‘Dur yavanam’ which is cited in grammatical texts as an example of  the Avyayii Bhaava compound in the sense of vyurudhdhi (vi+ rudhdhi), the absence of prosperity of the Yavanas which was the wish of the then Indians.


It is the Yavanas who were picked for vyurudhdhi. The same feeling of intense revulsion for the Yavanas in the Caanakya Niiti Darpana also echoes when it says, ‘there is none more vile than the Yavana’.


Yavanas in Kalidasa

In the Vikramorvasiyam Yavanis (Act 5-2-7) are mentioned.

The commentator adds, “Ionian Greek girls were employed as servants in the courts of kings in ancient India. In the Shakuntala also (Act II) we find that  King Dushyanta’s retinue consists of several Ionian Greek girls and the sixth act of the same drama we have an ionian maiden whose duty is to carry the bow of the king wherever he goes.


In the Raghuvamsa, Kalidasa says,


यवनीमुखपद्मानां सेहे मधुमदं न सः|
बालातपमिवाब्जानामकालजलदोदयः ॥ ४-६१

yavanīmukhapadmānāṁ sehe madhumadaṁ na saḥ|
bālātapamivābjānāmakālajaladodayaḥ  || 4-61


yavanI mukha padmAnA.m sehe madhu mada.m na saH bAla Atapam iva abja AnAm a kAla jalada udayaH

  1. 61. saH=he that raghu; yavanI=of yavana females; mukha padmAnA.m= on faces, like lotuses – lotuses like faces; madhu mada.m= flush from drinks; a+ kAla= un, timely; jalada udayaH= cloud, arising; abjAnAm= for lotuses; bAla Atapam iva= young, sun, as with; na sehe= not, tolerated, removed – the flushes of drink from the faces of Yavana females.

Picture of Persian woman drinking


As to how an untimely cloud removes morning sunlight from the faces of just blooming lotuses, raghu has also removed the blooming flush of wine from the lotus-like faces of yavana women when he encountered their men. [4-61]


The yavani-s spoken of by kAlidAsa seem to be of Persian and other races on the north-west of India. Viewing them to be Greek or Ionians is only too far-fetched. – KMJ


Another drama of Kalidasa, Malavika Agnimitram, also refers to the Yavanas.


Hundreds of Tamil words are in ancient Greek (see my previous posts)


Tamil literature also talks about Yavana wine. The commentators said that it was Roman wine. When we look at Kalidasa it looks like Tamils also used Persian wine.


We have very clear proof for the contact with the Greeks; Fragments of drama with Greek words were discovered in South India. In the North West of India, there was Indo-Greek rule for a long time after Alexander left Indian borders.


Other references are in my earlier articles:—



Barhut sculpture of a Yavana; 2300 year old.

yavanas in Hindu literature | Tamil and Vedas


Yavanas are described as men of harsh words by Ilango and a Brahmin poet Kumattur Kannanar and Mlechchas and Turks by commentator Adiyarkkunallar. 4.Ancestors of Tamil Chozas fought with “Black Yavana” during Lord Krishna’s time! 5.Vedic literature (Satapatha Brahmana) also described some people speaking …

தமிழ் பண்பாடு | Tamil and Vedas | Page 46



31 Jul 2014 – Yavana in Puranas Mucukunta was an ancient king, who the Chozas claim as their ancestor. Later inscriptions and Tamil literature claim Chozas belong to the solar race. Sibi, who ruled North West India was also an ancestor of the Chozas according to Sangam Tamil literature(Purananuru). Mucukunda …

Who is a Mlecha? | Tamil and Vedas



In the Sangam Tamil literature we come across the word Mlecha in Mullaippaattu (line 66). Poet Napputhanar called the Yavanas as Mlechas. He described them as dumb who used only sign language. Lot of Roman or Greek bodyguards were used by the Tamil kings. Tamils called theYavanas (Romans) ‘mlechas’ …





Written by London Swaminathan 


Date: 27 DECEMBER 2017 


Time uploaded in London- 6-21 am



Post No. 4552

Pictures shown here are taken from various sources such as Facebook friends, Books, Google and newspapers; thanks


The greatest statesman that India has ever produced is Chanakya. He was the man who established the mighty Magadha empire. Even the Greek king Alexander the Great returned to his homeland fearing the army of the Magadha empire. Though we don’t have any authentic report about the life history of Chanakya, we are able to piece together the materials that are available in dramas such as Mudra Rakshasa of Visakadatta and other word of mouth stories. One underlying thread in all these stories is that Chanakya was an astute politician. He did not hesitate to use Sama, Dana, Beda, Danda (peace, bribe, dissension and punish) to achieve his goal. He followed the policy of ‘tit for tat’ or tooth for tooth, blood for blood. He believed that diamond should be cut by a diamond and a thorn should be taken out by a thorn.


Here are few interesting stories: –


King Mahapadma Nanda had eight sons through his legal marriage and one son through his intimacy with a servant maid by name Mura. Her son was Maurya Chandra Gupta.


The rule of Nava/Nine Nandas was tyrannical. They were the embodiments of arrogance. They were against all the rituals and particularly Brahminical. Mahapadma Nanda was a modern Hiranyakasipu, the demon.


One day he went for a walk and stopped suddenly and laughed. A servant maid of the palace was coming in the opposite direction. Seeing the king laughing she also laughed. Nanda stopped her and asked the reason for her laugh. She was scared and dared not to answer his question. She told him that she would tell the reason later and ran away.


She wanted to give him a correct answer or an excuse and so she consulted lot of people; All her efforts were fruitless. She went to  minister Sakatara, who was in the jail. He helped her out. How?


Story of Minister Sakatara

Let us first read the story of Sakatara. He was a good minister but he was imprisoned on flimsy charges along with his wife and son. They were supplied meagre food in the prison and his wife and son died in course of time. He was waiting for an opportunity to take revenge upon the Nine Nandas.


To the maid who came to get his help he put two simple questions:

What was Mahapadma Nanda looking at when he laughed?

Where was he then?

The servant maid told Sakatara that the king was near a canal and he was looking at a big tree. Immediately Sakatara guessed the answer and told the lady the king was amused when he saw a tiny seed of that big tree floating in the water. He laughed at it thinking that how come a tiny seed could produce a big tree.


The maid was happy and went to see the king next day and gave him this answer. He was surprised to see that she got it right. But he knew that it was not the servant maid’s answer and wanted to find out who helped her. Through his spies he found out that this lady met Sakatara in the prison the previous day.


Now Mahapadma Nanda became soft and released the intelligent minister Sakatara. He was appointed the Head of the Department of Rituals.


One day Sakatara was walking along a village road and saw something strange. A Brahmin with a tuft was pouring sour buttermilk on some grass. As he was the head of rituals, he wanted to know what the Brahmin was doing. That Brahmin told Sakatara that he wanted to destroy the grass as it was made him to fall. Sakatara saw a point in his action and thought that this person would achieve his goal. He took him to Pataliputra (modern Patna in Bihar)  and used his service. There was a ceremony in the palace and this ‘no so good looking’ poor Brahmin was given a front seat.


Mahapadma Nada walked into the hall and saw an ugly Brahmin taking a seat in the front row. He pulled him out and threw him out of the hall. That Brahmin was Chanakya.

On that day Chanakya made a vow, “I wouldn’t tie my tuft of hair till I uproot this Nandas”.


Sakatara and Chanakya joined together and made big plans to uproot the Nandas. Nanda has a great minister by name Rakshasa. Chanakya spoiled all his efforts who tried to prop up the Nandas. Through a servant maid Chanakaya and Sakatara gave poisonous food to the Nine Nandas and all of them died at once. There was utter chaos in the kingdom.


Chanakya made a deal with the neighbouring kingdom of King Parvata. If he could capture Pataliputra he would get half the kingdom and the rest would be ruled by Chandragupta, the servant maid Mura’s son. When Parvata invaded the country with his son Malayaketu, Parvata was killed by foul means and Malayaketu ran for his life. Now Chanakya and Sakatara crowned Chandra Gupta as the king. Later Maurya Chandragupta became the emperor of mighty Magadha Kingdom. His grandson was the great Asoka.


Chanakya’s gift to India is his Niti Shastra (Didactic literature) and world’s first book on Economics ‘The Arthashastra’. His other gift was the biggest empire of ancient India. This covered most of India except Tamil Kingdoms. Chanakya became the symbol of good and able governance. His policy was ‘end justifies means’. To destroy Adharma, you can do anything, in other words, followed Krishna of Mahabharata.





Compiled by London Swaminathan 


Date: 26 DECEMBER 2017 


Time uploaded in London-9-54 am



Post No. 4549

Pictures shown here are taken from various sources such as Facebook friends, Books, Google and newspapers; thanks


Canakya’s austere living is an indicator of his dislike for power and pelf and his incorruptibility. That made him an embodiment of high moral values.  a popular legend about him will bear it out. On taking up the assignment of Greek envoy at Pataliputra, Megasthenes expressed his wish to meet Canakya The appointment was fixed late evening. Canakya at that time was looking through some official papers. A lamp was on. As Megasthenes entered his chamber it was put out and another one in its place was lit. When Megasthenes wanted to know as to why this was done, C told him that when the earlier lamp was on he was looking through official papers. The oil in it was at state expense. Now that he was receiving him as a personal guest, the oil in it has to be at his personal expense. Hence the earlier lamp was put out and the new one was lit in its place. This was Canakya’s character. it is for no reason, therefore, that he was able to, in spite of being a poor Brahmin with no material resources, set up one of the greatest of the empires of the time.


Canakya is said to have continued, even after the installation of his protégé on the throne with his austere living in consonance with the Brahmin class to which he belonged, denying himself all comforts and the luxuries that the state power could have provide him.

This is how the chamberlain of Candragupta Maurya on reaching his house describes it:

Aho Rajadhirajamantrino vibhuthih:

uplasakalametad bhedakam gomayanam

bahubirupahrutanam barhisham stupametat

saranamapi samidibah sushyamanabirabi

virnamita patalatam drusyate jirnakudyam



“O the affluence of the minister of the king of kings!

Here is seen a piece of stone to break the cow-dung cakes with; there appears a heap of Kusa grass collected by young disciples; the shed too is seen with dilapidated walls and the corners of the roof are borne down with yonder sacrificial fagots that are drying”

Source:Canakyaniti by Satya Vrat Shastri



Written by London Swaminathan 


Date: 26 DECEMBER 2017 


Time uploaded in London- 6-56 am



Post No. 4548

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Moghul emperor Aurangazeb and his elder brother Dara Shukoh fought for their father Shah Jehan’s throne. There was a heavy fighting. At the end a messenger brought the news that Dara was defeated outside the walls of the city, but had escaped. The vengeful usurper made a vow that he would catch his brother Dara and cut off his head and send it to his old father Shah Jehan in his prison in Agra. Aurangazeb was lucky to capture Dara alive. He took him hand cuffed in a procession and then ordered the soldiers to cut his head off.


Niccolao Manucci, an Italian traveller, who worked for several Moghul kings and Hindu kings wrote some interesting stories about Dara Sukoh’s last days. When Aurangazeb received Dara’s head he gave it three thrust with his sword and shouted, ‘Take it out of my sight’. Manucci added that the head was sent to Shah Jehan at Agra prison at the instigation of Aurangazeb’s sister Roshanara Begum. She gave a banquet the same evening to celebrate the event.


Shah Jehan was at the dinner when Dara’s head arrived and on seeing it he cried loud and fell on the dinner table in a swoon. Another story says that the head laughed Ha! ha! Ha! when it was struck by Auranazeb.


Francois Bernier, French traveller and physician, also wrote about the incident. One version says that Aurangazeb instructed to his officials to say that it was a present from him to Shah Jehan. When the officials told him so Shah Jehan was very happy and remarked, ‘At last my son remembered me’ and opened the box. As soon as he saw the blood stained head of his eldest and favourite son Dara Sukoh he fainted.

There are conflicting stories about his burial as well. According to Manucci, the head was sent by Aurangazeb’s order to be buried in the sepulchre of Taj Mahal in Agra. Bernier says that the head, after being struck off by Aurangazeb’s executioners in the garden of Khijirabad in Old Delhi, was taken to Aurangazeb, who ordered it to be buried in Humayun’s tomb a few miles off.


Many ballads were current in the bazars at that time; and a popular ballad was sung about Dara’s tragic fate, which Aurangazeb vainly tried to suppress.


Dara Sukoh’s death was a great loss to intellectuals. He was a great scholar and a friend of the Seventh Sikh Guru Har Dayal. Dara translated the Hindu Upanishads into Persian. Aurangzeb was a quite different man. He was a religious bigot and gave lot of troubles to the Hindus. He was against all forms of art.



31 Golden Sayings from Tamil Poetess Avvaiyar (Post No.4543)

Compiled by London Swaminathan 


Date: 25 DECEMBER 2017 


Time uploaded in London- 7-06 am



Post No. 4543

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January 2018 Good Thoughts Calendar

Festival Days :-  January 1 New Year, 2 Arudra Darsanam, 13-Bogi Pandikai, 14 -Makara Sankaranti/Pongal, 24- Ratha Sapthami, 26- Republic Day, 30 -Gandhi’s death anniversary, 31- Thai Pusam, LUNAR ECLIPSE (Chandra Grahanam)

31 Golden Sayings from Tamil Poetess Avvaiyar’s books Muthurai and Nalvazi are given in this month’s calendar.

New Moon/Amavasai –16

Full Moon/Purnima– 2, 31+Lunar Eclipse

Ekadasi Fasting Days– 12, 27/28


January 1 Monday

Coconut tree sucks water from the ground and gives sweet water (at top) in tender coconut (fruit). If one does good to another, he would get in return something good – Muthurai 1

January 2 Tuesday

Gift given to good will be like a carving on a stone; Good done to ungrateful will vanish like writing on the water – Muthurai verse 2

January 3 Wednesday

Painful is adversity in youth and painful is prosperity in old age like the tree blossoming out of season and beautiful woman without a partner- Muthurai 3


January 4 Thursday

Though the conch shell is burnt, it remains white; though the milk is boiled it is tasty; Even when good people have difficulties they remain noble. verse 4

January 5 Friday

All the towering trees do not bear fruits but in due season; One’s tireless efforts won’t be successful until the time of fortune arrives- Verse 5


January 6 Saturday

Water lily grows as long as the water level is; one’s intelligence is up to the level of their studies. One’s accession of wealth depends upon the good deeds one did in previous births – verse 7

January 7 Sunday

To see good people is good; to listen to good words is good; to speak the virtues of good people is good; to associate with them is also good- verse 8


January 8 Monday

To see the bad people is bad; to listen to the rude words is wicked; to speak about the bad people is evil; to associate with them is sinful- verse 9

January 9 Tuesday

The water fed to the paddy fields benefits the grass in those fields as well; In the same way even if one person is on earth it rains benefitting all- verse 10


January 10 Wednesday

The screw pine has large leaves and has no scent; the Mahila has small petals but has got good smell; the sea is large but the water is not usable; though a spring is small it serves all- verse 12



January 11 Thursday

Good trees are not that grow in the forest; men who stand in the assembly and unable to read or interpret are the trees (wooden logs)- verse 13

January 12 Friday

The turkey, on seeing the peacock spreading its wings and dance, is spreading its ugly wings thinking it can do it; it is like men of ignorance showing off- verse 14

January 13 Saturday

A healer fell a victim to the tiger he tried to save; so is the help rendered to the ignoble; it breaks like a pot that fell on a rock – verse 15

January 14 Sunday

Don’t think that the patient people are ignoramuses; they are like the stork which waits for the right fish to come and fall in the trap- verse 16

January 15 Monday

Those who forsake you in crises are not relations; they are like the water birds that desert when the tank is dry; relations are the ones who stick to you even at the time of distress like the edible root and flowering plants that stick to the tank in dry season. – verse 17


January 16 Tuesday

Though a gold pot breaks it is still gold; what would be the worth of a mud pot that breaks? Great people are like the gold pots even when they are fallen – verse 18

January 17 Wednesday

Though you dip a measure in the deep sea water, it wont take four measures; though you get riches and husband , the happiness depends on destiny or fate – verse 19


January 18 Thursday

congenital diseases can kill though they are born with you; but herbs growing in far off mountains can heal the sick; don’t depend on people who are born with you; there are people like the medicinal plants somewhere- verse 20

January 19 Friday

When there is a good wife, the house has everything; if the wife is not good it’s like a tiger infested forest- verse 21

January 20 Saturday

Action follows fate or pre -written; Nothing happens as one wish for. Even Kalpaka tress will give you bitter nox vomica due to past karma- verse 22


January 21 Sunday

The wrathful vulgar are un weldable like the split or broken stones; but the good ones join like broken golden pots; the anger of righteous people disappear like the cut in water made by an arrow- verse 23


January 22 Monday

The learned are enamoured by the society of scholars. They are like the swans that swim together in a tank; the illiterates are like the crow that feasts on the dead bodies in the cremation ground- verse 24

January 23 Tuesday

Poisonous cobras hide in the holes fearing human beings; non-poisonous water snakes lie in the open field; they don’t fear an attack from humans. Those who are cunning at heart keep themselves aloof; those with open heart will never skulk- verse 25


January 24 Wednesday

A king is respected in his own country only; a learned man is respected wherever he goes; so, a scholar commands more respect than a monarch- Muthurai verse 26

January 25 Thursday

To a plantain tree, its own baby plant does harm; the woman who does not behave is a yama/god of death to her own husband- verse 27


January 26 Friday

With the Lady of Fortune comes wealth, great beauty and noble birth to us; they will vanish when she goes out- Muthurai verse 29

January 27 Saturday

Shun evil, Do good- all religions preach- Nalvazi verse 1

January 28 Sunday

There only two castes in the world; those who give are great; those who don’t give are base born- Nalvazi verse 2

January 29 Monday

This body is a bag of miseries; don’t take this false body as real; if you do charity you attain liberation- Nalvazi verse 3

January 30 Tuesday

It is hard to do anything good unless the past merits favour it; it is like a blind man using his walking stick to get down fruits from a mango tree; unless the right time comes it is a futile action- Nalvazi verse 4.


January 31 Wednesday

The life of sages is like water on lotus leaf. water is on the leaf but aloof, never wets it; the sages are in the world and out of it at once – Nalvazi verse 7






Manu’s Mystery about Sarasvati, Black buck, Mlechcha land and Gold Medicine (4527)

Written by London Swaminathan 


Date: 21 DECEMBER 2017 


Time uploaded in London- 18-16



Post No. 4527

Pictures shown here are taken from various sources such as Facebook friends, Books, Google and newspapers; thanks.


Manu’s Mystery about Sarasvati, Black buck, Mlechcha land and Gold Medicine (4527)

Manu Smrti, also known as Manava  Dharma Sastra, has lot of things which are not explained in full; so the mystery continues. The age of Manu Smrti is also wrong when we look at these mysteries. The mention of River Sarasvati, Mlecha (barbarians) land, Black buck, administering gold to a newly born child, the boundary of three different areas Brahmavarta, Brahmirishi desa and Aryavarta – all these need further explorations.

Look at the following slokas in the second chapter of MS; they deal with Ayurveda, zoology, geography and sociology (My comments are given at the end of these slokas)


  1. The knowledge of the sacred law is prescribed for those who are not given to the acquisition of wealth and to the gratification of their desires; to those who seek the knowledge of the sacred law the supreme authority is the revelation (Veda=Sruti).
  2. But when two sacred texts (Sruti) are conflicting, both are held to be law; for both are pronounced by the wise (to be) valid law.
  3. For example, the fire sacrifice may be (optionally) performed, at any time after the sun has risen, before he has risen, or when neither sun nor stars are visible; that (is declared) by Vedic texts.
  4. Know that he for whom (the performance of) the ceremonies beginning with the rite of impregnation (Garbhadhana) and ending with the funeral rite (Antyeshti) is prescribed, while sacred formulas are being recited, is entitled (to study) these Institutes, but no other man whatsoever.
  5. That land, created by the gods, which lies between the two divine rivers Sarasvati and Drishadvati, the sages call Brahmavarta.
  6. The custom handed down in regular succession (since time immemorial) among the four chief castes (varna) and the mixed castes of that country, is called the conduct of virtuous men.
  7. The plain of the Kurus, the country of the Matsyas, Panchalas, and Surasenakas, these form, indeed, the country of the Brahmarshis (Brahmanical sages, which ranks) immediately after Brahmavarta.
  8. From a Brahmana, born in that country, let all men on earth learn their several usages.
  9. That (country) which lies between the Himavat and the Vindhya mountains to the east of Prayaga and to the west of Vinasana (the place where the river Sarasvati disappears) is called Madhyadesa (the central region).
  10. But (the tract) between those two mountains (just mentioned), which extends as far as the eastern and the western oceans, the wise call Aryavarta (the country of the noble people or civilised people).
  11. That land where the black antelope naturally roams, one must know to be fit for the performance of sacrifices; the tract different from that (is) the country of the Mlechas (barbarians). (So no part of India is mlecha bhumi)
  12. Let twice-born men seek to dwell in those (above-mentioned countries); but a Sudra, distressed for subsistence, may reside anywhere.
  13. Thus has the origin of the sacred law been succinctly described to you and the origin of this universe; learn (now) the duties of the castes (varna).
  14. With holy rites, prescribed by the Veda, must the ceremony on conception and other sacraments be performed for twice-born men, which sanctify the body and purify (from sin) in this (life) and after death.
  15. By burnt oblations during (the mother’s) pregnancy, by the Jatakarman (the ceremony after birth), the Chowla (tonsure), and the Maungibandhana (the tying of the sacred girdle of Munga grass) is the taint, derived from both parents, removed from twice-born men.
  16. By the study of the Veda, by vows, by burnt oblations, by (the recitation of) sacred texts, by the (acquisition of the) threefold sacred science, by offering (to the gods, Rishis, and manes), by (the procreation of) sons, by the great sacrifices, and by (Srauta) rites this (human) body is made fit for (union with) Brahman
  17. Before the navel-string is cut, the Jatakarman (birth-rite) must be performed for a male (child); and while sacred formulas are being recited, he must be fed with gold, honey, and butter.



Manu Smrti is dated around second century BCE. This is wrong. Neither Manu Smrti nor the Rig Veda deal with the Sati (widow burning) ceremony; Both Rig Veda and Manu mention Sarasvati river which existed around 2000 BCE and then disappeared.

Another reference to River Sarasvati adds to the mystery:

‘A Brahmin killer may eat food fit for an oblation and walk the length of the river Sarasvati against the current; or he may restrain his eating and recite one entire collection of Veda three times ( to get rid of the sin) –11-78


Modern research shows that Sarasvati lost its full glory around 2000 BCE. But Manu talks about the Vinasan ( which is described as the place of disappearance of Sarasvati). So during Manu’s time there was a river running its full length. Might have disappeared just before it met the sea. Rig Veda sings that the mighty Sarasvati was running between the high mountains and the sea. If Sarasvati was not running during his days Sloka/couplet 11-78 would not make any sense.


The version we have today is only an updated version. The original must be 4000 year old.


Another interesting point is the reference to the antelope Black buck (Krishnasara). He says that wherever black buck lives that land is holy and fit for conducting the fire ceremonies. According to 19th century writers, Black buck was found throughout the subcontinent covering the modern Bangladessh, Pakistan and Nepal. It was found from the southernmost end of the land to the Himalayas. Even now it is considered sacred and not hunted.

There are two interesting questions:

Why did Manu choose Black buck? Like cow and elephant, it also gained divine status. Brahmin boys tie it in their sacred thread. Does it show that once upon a time all the Brahmins wore deer skin, particularly black buck skin?


The second question is if black buck is the criteria for sacredness, then the whole country is a sacred land. Black buck is found in Palani Hills in Tamil Nadu around 1850. Sangam Tamil literature also confirmed that the Vedic fire sacrifices were conducted in Tamil Nadu 2000 years ago. So the whole of Indian subcontinent is holy land, fit for fire sacrifices and it was not Mlecha land at least 2300 years ago.


But the above passages show that beyond the Vindhyas and Himalayas it was Mlecha land. This passage must be written long long ago, before the humans occupied the southern part of India. Sangam Tamil literature describe the Greeks and Romans as Mlechas. Later literature called the Arabs and English as Mlechas. Second chapter description of Brahma desa, Brahmarishi desa and Aryavarta show that this was older part of MS. Drshadvati and Sarsvati were Vedic rivers.


During the Jatakarma (ceremony for newly born child), Manu asks to give the boy butter, milk  in golden vessels. Micro quantity of gold was good for the health says later medical literature. It describes the manufacture of Goldpasma (gold powder) This shows Ayurveda was practised during his time.

–to be  continued……………..