Bhartruhari Notes- Part 4 (Post No.7296)

Written by London Swaminathan

Date: 3 DECEMBER 2019

 Time in London – 20-48

Post No. 7296

Pictures are taken from various sources; beware of copyright rules; don’t use them without permission; this is a non- commercial, educational blog; posted in and simultaneously. Average hits per day for both the blogs 12,000

Verse 53
Solar and Lunar eclipse
Rahu revenging on a chosen pair at fixed time. He effects eclipse of the luminous Lords of night and day.

Eclipse and Rahu are in Tamil literature as well.

Verse 54
Ornament for the ear is not Kundala, but Vedas
Ornament for the hand is not Kankan, but doing charity
Ornament for the body is not sandal paste, but good deeds.

Verse 55
Chemistry of a Poet
Victorious are the favoured master Poets
Skilled in the sentiments alchemy
In their body of fame they feel
No threat of old age, death and rebirth

Verse 56
There is a Tamil proverb
Even if milk runs like a river, a dog will only drink it by licking.
B says,
Perceive that a jug draws its measure
Of water from a well or from the sea

Dog and Elephant- Who commands respect?

Verse 57
Look at the world
The dog is obedient, wags its tail and eats and grateful for ever, but people treat it without respect;
The elephant is arrogant, eats carelessly, but people praise it and give respect.

Compare this with Bhagavad Gita (5-18) sloka where Krishna says Pandithah samadarsinah. The scholars look at la earned Brahmin, a dog, an elephant, an outcast with an equal eye.

Verse 58
It is about taxation
Through out India kings adopted same taxation laws,i.e. one sixth of the income is paid to the king. Here B uses cow and calf simile.

In Sangam Tamil literature, in a Purananuru (184) verse, poet says if an elephant is fed grains in the proper way it will come for a long time. But if the elephant is allowed into the field for food grains, everything will be damaged. In the same way a king must tax his people little by little.

B says
King, if you wish to milk your realm like a cow, first nourish the world as you would a calf. When it is nurtured with constant care , a kingdom yields fruits like a wish granting vine , Kalpalatha.

Verse 65
It is about Suryakanta stone, magnifying glass. Several poets including Tirumular  in Tamil use this simile.

Verse 67
It is difficult to correct bad people.
You can’t straighten the tail of a dog, says Tamils.
B says
Trying to correct the bad people is like trying to sweeten the ocean with a drop of honey;
Trying to tie the elephant with lotus stems;
Trying to polish the diamond with a flower.

Verse 68
B says
The silence of fools serves to adorn them.
We see this maxim in all Indian literature

Verse 90

Through out Tamil and Sanskrit literature we see same descriptions of women’s beauty. The similes are unique to Indian literature.

B says
A face to rival the moon,
Eyes that make mockery of lotuses
Complexion eclipting God’s lustre
Thick tresses that shame the black bee
Breast s like elephants swelling losses
Heavy hips,
A voice enchanting and soft
The adornments in maidens is natural.

(If I have to give comparisons, I have to quote from 1000 books.)

Homeopathy Principle

Verse 91
Women is compared to poison and ambrosia by B.
It is the basis of homeopathy.
The germs which gives you the disease is the medicine
The amorous looks of a beauty causes mental disturbance, but the medicine is not outside. She is the cure as well.
Tamil poet Tiruvalluvar also uses this in Tirukkural 1091, 1102

“Her eyes painted black, has two glances; one pains me; the other heals that pain”-1091

“The medicine for a disease is always something different from it : but for the disease caused by this beautiful maid, she herself is the cure”.1102 of Tirukkural

This Homeopathy principle is in the Achamanam or sipping of water done by Hindus whenever they visit different towns. First, they take in small quantity of  water Three times from the temple tank or the village well by repeating God’s names. They won’t get any disease from that particular water. Since they take the germs or poison in  minute quantities it would save them from attacks from those germs. Likeness cures lLkeness is the dictum.



BHARTRUHARI NOTES- Part 3 (Post No.7291)

Written by london swaminathan

Date: 2 DECEMBER 2019

 Time in London – 20-41

Post No. 7291

Pictures are taken from various sources; beware of copyright rules; don’t use them without permission; this is a non- commercial, educational blog; posted in and simultaneously. Average hits per day for both the blogs 12,000

Verse 38

Fate may destroy the swans’ joy but it can never rob it of its skill in separating water from milk.

Hindus believe that the swans have a strange power of separating water from milk and drink only milk . This is in Kalidasa’s works and Tamil literature.

Verse 39

Here B tells another story of a bald- headed man. He went to take rest under the shade of wood apple tree. Alas, there his head was smashed by a large falling fruit,
Where goes a man deserted by fortune
There do adversaries follow him!

If you are under the influence of good stars, like Issacs Newton you will discover a new law when the apple falls on your head.

In Tamil there are two proverbs,

Patta kaalileye Patum, Ketta kutiye ketum.
The equivalent English proverb is
Troubles come in battalions.

Another Tamil proverb is
Even if you go to Rameswaram, Saneesvaran will follow you.
(Rameswaram is a holy spot, Saneesvaran is the evil planet Saturn)

Verse 40

It is about one’s Karma. You will get the merits of your good karma like the fruit bearing trees. They give the fruits at the right time.

Verse 43

B sings about trident wielding Shiva

Verse 44
Good summary of virtues is here.

Verse 45
Echoes Tirukkural (467)
Begin a task only after estimating/ considering the pros and cons of an action. After beginning the task you should not consider the good and bad sides of it.(467)

Verse 46 and 47

Purva janma punya, the merits you earned in your previous births, will protect you wherever you go.

Vane Rane Satru jalagni madhye.

There is another proverb in Sanskrit- Dharmo rakshati Rakshitah

(whoever upholds the Dharma, will be protected by the Dharma)

Verse 48 is also about the effect of karma in sky and earth

Verse 49

Even Indra suffered in the battle field due to fate.
Even though he had Vajrayudam and Airarvatam he suffered.

(Vajrayudham is his thunderbolt, Airavatam is his powerful elephant)

Verse 52

It is about perseverance—

The gods were not appeased by the fabulous gems
They drew from the Cosmic Ocean;
Nor did they falter where the sea spewed forth
A dreadful poison;
They ceased to churn its milky waters
Only when it yielded up
The nectar of immortal life
The resolute never relinquish their goal.

To be continued……….



Date: 30  NOVEMBER 2019

Time in London – 14-59

Post No. 7281

Pictures are taken from various sources; beware of copyright rules; don’t use them without permission; this is a non- commercial, educational blog; posted in and simultaneously. Average hits per day for both the blogs 12,000


I READ Bhartuharis’ Poems Edited by Theodore de Barry, Colombia University Press,1967.

1.I Ching, Chinese traveller, who travelled in India between 671 CE and 695 CE refers to Bhartruhari.

2.B’s Satakatryam (3×100 Niti, Srngara and Vairagya Satakam) contains 21 meters in Sanskrit.

3.Punning is used to strengthen the antithesis between amorous passion and peace.

Pun words  — Passion – Peace

Kesa samyamina sruther (verse 139)

Samyamina- tied up  — self control

Param param gathe – extended to ear—gone to the opposite shore of worldly existence

Sruti – ear – Vedas

Dwijaana – teeth – twice born men

Mukta – pearl – released, liberated


Verse 1- Shiva is worshipped as light in the minds of Yogis

Verse 2 – Passion smites even those bereft of life

Verse 3 – Don’t think of suicide, don’t desire wealth of others, Speak the Truth, Do charity , Don’t talk about women’s conduct, Control your desires, Respect elders- this is the gist of scriptures.

Verse 5 – yathaa kincit jnoham……

compare Tirukkural 1110 (the more I come to know now, exposed my ignorance.

When I knew but a little, I was blinded by pride, as an elephant by rut; with my mind so stained, I believed “I am a sage”.

But slowly I learned from the presence of men wise in myriad ways.

My pride was like fever, subdued and I knew, “I am a fool”.

Verse 7 – like a string of pearls napped- this simile is in Gita, Tirukkural, Karnan- Bhanumati game

Verse 8 – you can wake up a sleeping man but not a man who is pretending to sleep is a Tamil proverb.

An ignorant man is readily pleased

More readily is a sage

But a man distorted by trifling knowledge

Brahma himself cannot sway.

Compare He who knows not……………… (proverb)

Verse 9 –

You cannot straighten the tail of a dog is a Tamil proverb

B says you can get gems by opening the mouth of a sea animal (Makara Mani), you may cross the roaring seas, you can wear a snake as a garland, but you cannot change a fool.

Verse 11 – mani sanollita

A warrior hero wounded at arms

And men whose riches are spent in alms.

Verse 15- hartur yati na ko charam

It is about education/ learning; it is in a later time Tamil poem

It eludes the pillage of thieves

Promotes endless joy

Bestowed on those who beg

It was greater yet

And perishes not despite the end of time

Wisdom is a treasure deep within

Kings renounce your arrogance

Towards its masters

Who can rival them?

Also Tamil poet Thiruvalluvar in Tirukkural Chapters 40, 41, 42

Verse 17

Tamil proverb is A tiger never eats grass even if it s very hungry.

And B says

How can a lion , proudest of the creatures,

Stop to feed on withered grass?

Kim jirnam trunam aththimana mahatma agre cara kesari

Verse 18

Walk in the footsteps of great men

Who revealed to the saints this vow

As severe as a sword

Compare Longfellow’s English poem

Kalidasa and Tamil poet Kamban also say that the ancient poets showed them the path .

Verse 19

Tri karana suddhi- this unique to Hindus. They believe that word and deed and thought  must be one and then only one can do wonders.

Manasi, vacasi, kaye (Mano, Vak, Kaya)

This concept is found from Himalayas to  Kanyakumari and no where else in the world.

Verse 20

Greatness of ocean – it supports Vishnu, weight of the deep water and Vadavagni.

It is also in Bhagavad Gita (2-70), Panca Tantra, Kalidasa and Tamil literature

Verse 22

About fate—B gives the gist of three couplets in Tirukkural. Tiruvaluvar, author of Tirukkural sings about the influence of fate in chapter 38.

Most famous Tamil epic is based upon fate.

But yet Hindus believe God can change anything over ruling written fate (Hindus believe that Brahma has already written t on your head; it may mean actual lines n one’s skull or one’s thinking process)

In one of the Shiva temples in Tamil Nadu Shiva is called Mr Effort (Muyarchinathar)

Tiruvalluvar also says in Couples 619, 620 and 1023

B says

We would bow to the gods

But even they submit to destiny’s sway

We would pay destiny homage

But it can only grant reward

In accord with our karma

Nay, if the Karma is the source of all reward

What need have we for destiny or deities?

Our fealty is to karma

Under which even destiny crumbles

To be continued………………………………



Date: 26 NOVEMBER 2019

Time  in London – 18-48

Post No. 7266

Pictures are taken from various sources; beware of copyright rules; don’t use them without permission; this is a non- commercial, educational blog; posted in and simultaneously. Average hits per day for both the blogs 12,000

Tamils have a special interest in Aindra grammar system. The reason being Tolkappiar, the author of the oldest book in Tamil (Tolkappiam) was well versed in it. Panamparanar who introduces Tolkappiar in his prolegomenon says this. So people wonder whether AINDRA was prevalent before Panini or after Panini or many systems existed at the same time in different parts of India. Tolkappiar says Indra and Varuna are gods of two Tamil regions along with Vishnu, Skanda and Durga representing other three Tamil regions.

Great Tamil poet Kamban says Hanuman was well versed in Aindra grammar. He is also praised as Nava Vyakarana Panditha. (Nava may mean NEW or NINE)

Agrawala says,

“According to Vedic literature Brahma taught grammar to Brihaspati and he taught Indra and Indra taught Bharadwaja. He in turn taught other Rishis (seers). Now we know there was another system Bharadwaja grammar. Bhardwaja was a master of Aindra as well. Panini also mentioned several teachers before him.

Tamils believe that there was one grammar before Tolkappair, codified by Agastya as well. Agastya’s own disciple Tolkappiya did another grammar within a short time.Why? we don’t know. From all these things what we understand is several grammar systems existed simultaneously, because there can’t be more than 50 years difference between Agastya and Tolkappiyar if we believe the story of most famous Tamil commentator Nachinarkiniyar. Tamils also believe that Shiva sent Agastya to codify a grammar to Tamil language. It is in the old Tamil verses. Poet Kalidasa also links Pandya with Agastya in his Raghuvamsa. It is all 2000 year old belief.

Indra is a Vedic God who has the highest number of hymns in the oldest book The Rig Veda. The very construction of the word Aindra (derived from Indra) is also of Sanskrit origin.

But many Tamils do not know much about Panini or other systems of grammar that existed in India. Agrawala in his book ‘India as known to Panini’ gives interesting details:–


ஐந்திரம் நிறைந்த | Tamil and Vedas

8 May 2018 – அனுமனை நவ வியாகரண பண்டிதன் என்றும் ராமாயணம் வருணிக்கும். நவ என்றால் இரண்டு பொருள் உண்டு. புதிய மற்றும் ஒன்பது …


Big Guns of India- Longest and the Largest! (Post No.7182)

Largest Wheeled Cannon, Jaivana Cannon, Jaigarh Fort, Rajsthan, 20 feet long of Sawai Raja of Jaipur


Date: 5 NOVEMBER 2019

Time  in London – 18-42

Post No. 7182

Pictures are taken from various sources; beware of copyright rules; don’t use them without permission; this is a non- commercial, educational blog; posted in and simultaneously. Average hits per day for both the blogs 12,000.

Kalauragi Cannon in Karnataka 29 feet long. (Longest in the World)

India is famous for its very big guns made up of iron, bronze and brass. India has the longest gun in Karnataka. The largest bronze gun is in Bijapur. Jaipur has the biggest gun with two wheels. We see big guns from 14h century. Who taught them to make such big guns? It is in ancient Sanskrit book called Sukra Niti. White people don’t want to give credit to India. So they said it was written after the guns came. As usual they placed cart before the horse!

Moghul emperor Aurangzeb had seventy guns mostly made up of brass. Some of these are so heavy and large and so they had to be drawn and moved about with the help of 20 yoke of oxen.

Bijapur cannon with dragon head


The story of the great gun of Agra is a sad story. Sitaram’s water colour painting shows that the unmounted huge gun lying in mud on the banks of river Jamuna. British Governor General Lord William Bentinck ordered to destroy it and sold it as scrap metal in 1833. It was a brass gun of 14 feet long and 22 inch in bore. A man could easily enter into it in a crouching position. Its weight was 1469 maunds.

Many of the Moghul brass guns were captured by the British and destroyed. It is written that 76 brass and 86 iron guns were seized at Agra by Lord Lake. 68 guns and mortars of brass, cast in India were also captured by him in Delhi. The British plundered India and used them for themselves or sent them to Britain.


According to Ferguson the largest piece of ordnance was the MALIK – I – MAIDAN GUN made up of bronze. It means Monarch of the Plain.Its composition was

80% copper and 20 % tin. Its length 14 feet 3 inches.

Diameter at mouth – 4 feet 10 inches. The muzzle is in the shape of a dragon. The manipulation and skill, involved in casting such a gigantic piece of bronze armament proves the skill of the workers in Ahmednagar in 1548.

Neogi in his book Copper in Ancient India lists other smaller guns as well.

P k Gode in his article ‘Use of Guns and Gun powder in India  from 1400 onwards gives evidence for use of guns in that period. Mahun, a Chinese traveller , visiting Bengal in 1406 mentions that guns were used in Bengal.

In memoirs of Babar also we find that he used guns and gun powder near Kanauj in 1528


Description of iron guns and cannons are found in the Sanskrit work SUKRA NITI written by  Sukracharya. If guns are foreign inventions, he would not have written it in Sanskrit. Moreover his book was written before Muslim rule. Sukraniti describes two varieties of fire arms -Kshudra nalika , small guns and

Brihad nalikas, large guns. He gives detailed description of these guns.

In Yuktikalpataru , another Sanskrit work of the 11th century, we find a list of places where swords are manufactured. Benares, Magadha, Ceylon, Nepal, Anga, Mysore, Surat and Kalinga are mentioned by the author.

Sarangadhara Paddhati , another Sanskrit work of 14th century, also gives the manufacturing towns-

Khatikattara,Rishi, Banga, Shurporaka,Videha,Anga

Madhyama grama, Bedidesha, Sahagram,Kalinjar.


The longest cannon is in Kalaburagi Fort in Karnataka. It is 29 feet long and was made during the Bahamani rule in the 14th century.(New Indian Express reported it in 2016)


2000 year old Tamil Sangam literature also mentioned shiny swords. Poetess Avvaiyar warned one king in a satirical poem, that your palace armoury has shiny swords and your enemy’s armoury has swords that are second hand, unpolished, used swords. She hinted to the king that you are inexperienced in war with newly manufactured  arms where as the other one has great experience in warfare.

Famous Guns of India

Following are the famous guns of Moghul Emperors scattered all over India:-

Their weights range between 30 and 47 tons;

The maximum length found was 31 feet;

Longest bore reaches about 1 feet 7 inches in diameter;

They are made up of iron;

Dacca , now in Bangladesh, had a gigantic gun weighing 30 tons. The weight of the iron ball used in it was 465 pounds. It has fallen into the river and disappeared. Venetian traveller Manucci mentioned it under the name ‘Kaley khan’.

There is a gun at Murshidabad, named

‘Jahan kosha’, meaning conqueror of the world, it has a length of 17-6 feet. Circumference 5-3 feet.

‘Landa kesab’ gun in Bijapur  was 21 feet 7 inch long; the weight of the gun is estimated to be 47 tons. In the same town another gun called ‘Farflier’ was 30 feet long.

Finally mention made here of the long gun of Gulbarga . It has got a double row of iron rings , ten on each side, by means of which the gun was possibly conveyed from one place to another.

–source book (with my inputs)

History of Chemistry in Ancient and Medieval India

P Ry, 1956

Gun in Bengaluru


My favourite film Guns of Navarone


Written by London Swaminathan

Date: 3 NOVEMBER 2019

Time  in London – 21-01

Post No. 7175

Pictures are taken from various sources; beware of copyright rules; don’t use them without permission; this is a non- commercial, educational blog; posted in and simultaneously. Average hits per day for both the blogs 12,000.

Muslim invaders drove out Indian scholars to Tibet

Muslim invaders destroyed Buddhist monasteries of Udandapura and Vikramasila (In Bihar region) around 1200 CE. Many of the monks were killed and others fled to various countries. The learned Sakyasri went to Orissa and afterwards to Tibet; Ratnarakshita to Nepal;Buddamitra and others sought refuge in South India, While Sangama Srijnana with several of his followers went to Burma and Cambodia. And Buddhism became extinct in Magadha (modern Bihar).

Many emigrants from Magadha rejoined their brethren in the South and founded colleges in Vijayanagara, Kalinga and Konkan. The comparatively satisfactory condition of Buddhism in the Deccan about that time is attested by the rich donations to the monastery at Dambal.
Monks of the monasteries Udandapura and Vikramasila on their dispersion carried with them their arts and learning in the same manner as the Byzantine Greeks on their expulsion from Constantinople bore with them their intellectual treasures to the Italian cities. In the kingdom of Deccan and in Tibet the Buddhist refugees found hospitable asylums, just as the Greek philosophers found in the Florentine Republic under the Medici.

Tantric mysticism and alchemy were taught at the Universities of Nalanda, Udandapura and Vikramasila in Maghada and Central India and from thence it spread to Bhot ( Tibet) and to South India.

The Tantras found a home in China. Amoghavagra, a Brahmin converted to Buddhism, resided in China between 746 and 771 CE. He spread the science of supernatural powers, Siddhis, there.

In Tibet
Tibetan scriptures Kanjur (Kang- Gyur-The Translaation of the Word)) and Tanjur (Stan-ghyur-The Translation of the Treatises) ) were the Tibetan equivalent of Buddhist Tripitaka. Both represent an immense collection of works (108+224 Volumes) primarily translated from the Sanskrit and subsidiarily from the Chinese languages between the 7th and the13th centuries . These collections are of considerable value as most of their Sanskrit originals are either lost or now unavailable. The faithful accuracy of these translations and their fidelity to the original enable us often to reproduce the Sanskrit texts and thus provide us valuable historical data.

Tanjur, though a commentary of Kanjur (108 volumes) , is twice as large as the former and consists generally of 225 large volumes. Some parts of Tanjur are believed to date back to the seventh century, though the major portion was composed later. It is divided into two main classes Rgyud, corresponding to the Sanskrit Tantra and Mdo, corresponding to Sanskrit Sutra (Science and Literature).


Some five volumes of Tanjur are devoted to medicine and some others to astronomy or astrology. We are indebted to a great Hungarian scholar Csoma de Koros for his pioneering work on the study of these two famous encyclopaedic Tibetan scriptures. In his analysis of the contents of the Mdo, Csoma has mentioned a work on preparing quick silver, (mercury) described as the most powerful agent for subduing every sickness and for improving the vigorous of the body, as well as a work on turning base metals into gold.

Pandit Vidhusekhar Bhattacharya, in his article on Sanskrit Treatises on Alchemy as translated into Tibetan has discussed about four works and given more information. He gave the Sanskrit names of four treatises as

1.Rasa siddhi sastra
2.Dhatuvada sastra
3.Sarvesvara rasayana

Some of these works are translated into English.
The original Sanskrit texts of these works belong to eighth or ninth centuries. They are completely lost and fully depend upon Tibetan aand Chinese translation.

Rasa means mercury or quicksilver and Rasayana means Alchemy.

Source book – History of Chemistry in Ancient and Medieval India




 WRITTEN by London Swaminathan

Date: 6 OCTOBER 2019
British Summer Time uploaded in London – 19-38
Post No. 7065

Pictures are taken from various sources; beware of copyright rules; don’t use them without permission; this is a non- commercial, educational blog; posted in and simultaneously. Average hits per day for both the blogs 12,000.

கம்போடியக் கல்வெட்டுகளில் அழகிய கவிதைகள்- பகுதி 2 (Post No.7017)

Tamil at the bottom


Date: 26 SEPTEMBER 2019

British Summer Time uploaded in London – 7-54 am

Post No. 7017

Pictures are taken from various sources; beware of copyright rules; don’t use them without permission; this is a non- commercial, educational blog; posted in and simultaneously. Average hits per day for both the blogs 11,000.

150 இந்திய வானியல் விஞ்ஞானிகளும், 300 சம்ஸ்க்ருத நூல்களும்! (Post No.6766)

Written by  London Swaminathan

 Date: 12 AUGUST 2019  

British Summer Time uploaded in London –  16-

Post No. 6766

 Pictures are taken from various sources.  ((posted by AND

to be continued………………………….

What is the True Meaning of ‘Sloka’- Did ‘Shoka’ become ‘Sloka’? (Post No.6752)

Written by London Swaminathan

 Date: 9 AUGUST 2019  
British Summer Time uploaded in London – 15-

Post No. 6752

 Pictures are taken from various sources.  ((posted by AND