Out-of-India - From Theory to Truth

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JwalaMukhi
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Re: Out-of-India - From Theory to Truth

Postby JwalaMukhi » 02 Sep 2012 05:05

Having said that "vedas" are irrelevant to dating of the sanskrit language, what exactly is the point of belaboring on that point in a thread which is trying to challenge the dating of the sanskrit language? What is the thesis of date/s of sanskrit language of those who want vedas to be not taken into picture? If there is no thesis other than saying that vedas are not to be used to date sanskrit, it doesn't add much information on the question that is in contention.

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Re: Out-of-India - From Theory to Truth

Postby shiv » 02 Sep 2012 06:59

JE Menon wrote:So where do the Vedas come from then? Apparently, not India. Looks like we might be on the cusp of the Alien Instruction Theory (AIT). Not that I'm against the possibility, but some kind of rationale would be nice.

On the other hand, the general tendency of scholars appears to be, one way or other, to push the Anywhere But India agenda - at least some genetic evidence notwithstanding.


JEM as per AIT nazi not only did Sanskrit arrive in India in 1200 BC, the composition of the Vedas lasted till 500 BC as per Witzel. Witzel says Vedas composed in "Panjab" and that there is no mention of Vindhya mountains anywhere in the Vedas implying ignorance of the Vindhyas. According to David Anthony, Vedas were composed in Syria and compiled in Punjab.

But as per known history the Magadha empire in the east was in existence by 684 BC. That means Magadha empire pre dates the end of what Witzel calls the Vedic period as per accepted history. But the first capital of the Magadha empire was Rajgir (Rajgriha) in Bihar. The capital later went to Patna (Pataliputra). The name Rajgriha is clearly IndoEuropean. Raj and Regius are practically the same word. So Indo European was present in Magadha in 684 BC while the Vedas were still being composed according to Witzel, or shortly after they were composed as per other accounts.

However Rajgriha itself has archaeological findings dating back to 1000 BC. The Magadha Empire finds mention in the Atharva Veda. But the Atharva veda is associated with the Kurus of Haryana and not the Punjab areas and Iron gets a mantion. The iron age in India started around 1200 to 1000 BC.

This means that by 1000 BC, when the Vedas were still being composed by a pastoral people with memories of an earlier Central Asian life, "Indo European" language was present from Haryana to Bihar

Remember that the Vedas came before the Ramayana and Mahabharata. But Magadha gets a mention in these epics. But Magadha was in existence by 684 BC and its first capital has archaeological findings dated to 1000 BC. So according the AIT Nazi theory, Vedas were still being composed or compiled in Punjab and Ramayana yet to be written at a time when the Magadha empire was already in existence, speaking an Indo-European language and mentioned in the epics. Technically the Aryan Invaders had not reached Bihar by then so the language could not have been there. hey were in Haryana with the Atharva Veda Rishis doing their thing. And they were in Haryana because the Saraswati dried up. Is the Haraxwati dry?

JEM it could not get more confusing than this. That is where people like Witzel have introduced great clarity. Here is what might have been spoken in Magadha. This is the sort of precise clarity that indicates deep scholarship and an ability to communicate ideas that we must learn to emulate. It is simple ideas and info-bytes such as these that prove the timeline about India that Witzel writes about. 8)
http://www.people.fas.harvard.edu/~witzel/EJVS-7-3.pdf
The basic Dravidian word structure (in the sequel ə = long or short
vowel) is (C)ə(C), and suffixes have the structure: -C, -Cə, -CCə, -CCCə; after a root -C the
vowels -a-, -i-, or -u are inserted, thus əC-a-C etc., CəC-a-C etc..; and with base final -C-u,
CəC-a-C-u (Krishnamurti, forthc. 2001). While the present Munda word structure includes
(Pinnow 1959: 449 sqq.) CəCə, CəəC, CəCə, əCCə, əVVəC, CəCCə, CəCCəC, the oldest word
structure was: (C)ə(C), Cə-CəC, CəC-Cə’C, CəC-əC, CəC-Cə’C-əC. Clearly, both Drav. and
Munda words are frequently enough quite different from IE ones with: (prefix) +
(C)(R)e(R)(C) + (suffix + ending). While Drav. and Munda share CəC, CəCəC, Munda
words can often be distinguished, as Cə- in Cə-Cəc is a prefix, something that does not exist in
Drav.; and while CəCəc may exist in IE/IA (even with a prefix Cə-), normally, CəC- will be the
IA root and -əC a suffix.


I will speak more about this after I find out more about W. von Soden who was a real Nazi and believed that Akkadian had German influence rather than Semitic. Witzel has rad and translated von Soden

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Re: Out-of-India - From Theory to Truth

Postby SaiK » 02 Sep 2012 09:32

I think people are forgetting that syntax and semantics came much before scripting of Sanskrit language and grammar. Oldest Slokhas themselves are well formed proofs.

So, slokas from Alien land or slokhas went to alien land? It largely did not cross the mountains surrounding bharat from NE to NW. Neither did it came in nor it went out. It just started out here, retained here, and shall remain here.

Did I just went OT?

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Re: Out-of-India - From Theory to Truth

Postby Arjun » 02 Sep 2012 10:35

KLP Dubey wrote:The eternal Veda ("shabda") is an epistemologic axiom, along with five other valid sources of knowledge (perception, inference, comparison, presumption, and non-apprehension). It is not a logical "deduction". Such epistemology forms the basis of rational and logical inquiry.

KLP ji, Wouldn't it be fair to say that we can only accept something as an axiom once we are sure what the axiom means? I see a slight dissonance in your statements that we haven't fully deciphered the Vedas yet, but it remains valid enough to be accepted as an epistemological axiom.

Also, it seems to me that your position links up only with the Mimamsa school. Not sure if the other 5 philosophical schools of India agreed with Mimamsa on this issue - by most accounts Purva Mimamsa was eclipsed by the popularity of the later schools.

Your position is a valid one and there needs to be a body of researchers pursuing your logic - but seems to me the Mimamsa position will remain a fringe one in science-based research, unless one can prove that some Law of Nature can be derived from the Vedas or that Veda chanting can be the cause for cosmological or other activity. That would of course be a game changer...but until that event happens it would be futile to hope for even a large percentage of Indian academia (leave alone overseas) to agree with your position.

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Re: Out-of-India - From Theory to Truth

Postby member_23686 » 02 Sep 2012 10:58

According to the Mimamsa attempt to understand the Veda, the "operative" actions on the cosmic scale occur by means of the "verbs" present in the Vedic sounds. These verbs relate the "nouns" and have a number of other adjunct sounds. These sounds together comprise the Universe (both as "material" and "causative agent") and are in continuous operation.


At the personal level, committed reproduction of the Vedic sounds brings a number of mental, physical, and intellectual advantages over the average human. Moreover, study of the Mimamsa and Vedanta attempts to understand the Veda equips one with the means of rational and logical Inquiry leading to correct actions (dharma), as well as certain humanistic/spiritual qualities that generate health benefits and tranquillity. Otherwise one is adrift in the world and at the mercy of unreliable advice/testimony.


Thank you KL ji.

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Re: Out-of-India - From Theory to Truth

Postby KLP Dubey » 02 Sep 2012 12:39

JwalaMukhi wrote:Having said that "vedas" are irrelevant to dating of the sanskrit language, what exactly is the point of belaboring on that point in a thread which is trying to challenge the dating of the sanskrit language?


Again a bit of a "who-is-Sita" case. It has been clearly pointed out that the RV is not an admissible source for "dating" Sanskrit. That is of critical importance because it pulls out the rug from AIT/AMT/linguistic shenanigans. Read Shiv's posts as well.

What is the thesis of date/s of sanskrit language of those who want vedas to be not taken into picture? If there is no thesis other than saying that vedas are not to be used to date sanskrit, it doesn't add much information on the question that is in contention.


Sorry - you haven't been following. It makes a huge difference. See above.

KL

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Re: Out-of-India - From Theory to Truth

Postby RajeshA » 02 Sep 2012 13:00

KLP Dubey wrote:
RajeshA wrote:Vedas may be eternal and authorless, but I find your explanations till now of why it is so quite illogical!


I have NEVER explained "why" the Veda is eternal and authorless. So your telling me that you found my "explanation quite illogical" seems rather odd.

The eternal Veda ("shabda") is an epistemologic axiom, along with five other valid sources of knowledge (perception, inference, comparison, presumption, and non-apprehension). It is not a logical "deduction". Such epistemology forms the basis of rational and logical inquiry.

Axioms are fundamental to all knowledge, at the same time they cannot be arbitrary. Axioms are not deduced, they can only be falsified. A stream of inquiry can be shown to be entirely invalid when one or more of its axioms are falsified.

For that one needs to present what is the falsifiable criteria! If none is presented then it is more of a belief rather than an axiom!

I think the authority of the Vedas come from our belief in its authority and power, and as part of our belief we can even consider it an axiom of a certain philosophy, but for the unbelievers, it would be difficult to persuade logically that it is a scientific axiom.

KLP Dubey wrote:The axiom of Eternal Veda has NEVER been falsified despite more than 2500 years of recorded history of determined and highly intellectual attacks on it. You should read up on that, if you don't believe me. I am not here to tell you the entire story.

Till now you have only spoken of challenges from Buddhists, Nyaya-Vaisheshika and Sankkya, and you seem to imply that that is the sum total of philosophical and logical systems out there.

To me it looks like Mimamsa has still not had itself structurally tested through many different schools including Western!

For example [1] [2]
KLP Dubey wrote:RV 5.53 is one of a set of Suktas referring to the Maruts. If Talageri (or ManishH) claim that 5.53.9 is referring to an earthly river "sindhu", then they also need to tell us how (as mentioned in the SAME Sukta 5.53.7) the "Maruts" are releasing multiple "sindhus" (specifically, "tatardAnAh sindhavah"). While such an act makes no sense from an earthly point of view, it also deflates the claim that "sindhu" mentioned in 5.53.9 is a particular river "Sindhu" (Indus), since 5.53.7 clearly refers to a plural.
KLP Dubey wrote:RV 5.53 has about 1000 sounds arranged into about 250 words. Out of these, Talageri (or similar disputant like Elst, Witzel, ManishH etc: the identity of the disputant does not even matter) has chosen one word (two sounds) in 5.53.9 called "sindhu" and assumed it refers to the Indus river. In other words they think it is an actual river found on earth. Four things:

(1) It is obvious upon looking at the entire sukta that the mention of "sindhu" at that location is not a proper noun in the first place. Indeed 5.53 refers to "sindhavah" (plural) so unless you are willing to make the next assumption (also nonsensical) that there were multiple rivers called Sindhu at that point, you are already stuck. That mention of "sindhu" quite simply CANNOT be assigned by any ethical analyst to mean the Indus river.

(2) If you read the entire RV, you find that the word "sindhu" can NEVER be interpreted successfully in a consistent manner by assuming that it is an earthly river. The same is true for every single noun in the RV. Pick any noun you want (that appears more than once in the RV) and I will show you.

(3) What about the other 250 words in RV 5.53 ? If the word "sindhu" is being confidently declared to be a reliable earthly object, then the same assumption MUST be made about all the other words. There is no rational way out of that. You cannot pick and choose which word-meanings you consider to be reliable and which you do not, unless there is an *independent and reliable testimony* regarding the method/basis upon which to make the distinction. As I already pointed out in earlier posts, there is no method available. The nighantu and nirukta are ONLY catalogs, and do not contain the testimony about the time, location, and context under which the associations of RV words with earthly objects was made.

(4) Now if you still insist on assuming "sindhu = Indus river" in 5.53, we will take the only rational route available to us as mentioned in (3), and go ahead with the assumption that all the words in 5.53 describe objects/entities found on earth at the time of "composition/hearing/whatever" of the sukta. In that case, you will find yourself having to explain (see 5.53.1-8) the existence on earth of Maruts on chariots pulled by spotted deer, diving in from heaven, mid-air, and other places, releasing multiple Indus rivers, etc etc etc.

If I say, "KLP Dubeys always get angry, when somebody interprets the Vedas", what does it mean?

1) First some attributes and behavior of Shri K.L.P. Dubey are extracted from the sentence - "gets angry when somebody interprets the Veda"

2) One makes an assertion that there are many others, to whom one can subscribe similar attributes and behavior.

3) One chooses to refer to these other people, also as K.L.P. Dubey, because of the good alignment between the people based on their similarity. One gives these people a group identifier - "K.L.P. Dubeys" to refer to them.

4) One emphasizes with it that the individual, who is really called K.L.P. Dubey is in fact representative of this group, and is in fact the main provider for the group identity, thus raising the profile of the individual K.LP. Dubey!

Same is the case with the word "sindhavaḥ" in RV_05.53.07! Using the River "Sindhu", one can refer to various streams as a collective!

This is one modest effort to provide an example of an explanation and interpretation. I have heard however the argument that because some people have a difficulty interpreting Rig Veda because of the poetry in it (if understood as Sanskrit text), its Sanskritic interpretation is in fact wholly inconsistent and as such a false way to look at it!

The Vedas are indeed eternal and authorless, but those who are making this claim, need to explain a lot more how all that is to be understood. Saying "nobody knows" is really an unsatisfactory explanation and would be insufficient to persuade people to look at the Vedas that way!

In fact unsatisfactory responses can even lead people to doubt the authority of the Vedas itself.

KLP Dubey wrote:To paraphrase an old saying: "A day in the library saves a year on Bharat-Rakshak".

Yeah right! :lol: If you say so!

KLP Dubey wrote:On the other hand, if it is assumed that "the Veda is an authored work", such an assumption has been falsified every single time and shown to be without merit. This has already been conclusively shown by many. I was only repeating their results.

As I mentioned before in this thread, the lack of ability to perform ethical inquiry is due to a lack of understanding of Vedic principles. This in turn leads to a tendency to try and "use whatever is available" to score a point over another disputant, without bothering to see if it has higher-level validity in the first place. This is the state of the argumentation in both the AIT and (regrettably) also the OIT camps.


You had written
KLP Dubey wrote:As I said before, the only way one can legitimately use it in the OIT/AIT debate is in the sense of "I can prove that person X in location Y at time Z associated a certain sound in the RV with a particular earthly (or even celestial) object"

I don't see why this qualifier cannot be understood every time one makes any claim on the Vedas! Just like some use "pbuh"!

Just my views onlee!

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Re: Out-of-India - From Theory to Truth

Postby RajeshA » 02 Sep 2012 13:11

KLP Dubey wrote:
JwalaMukhi wrote:Having said that "vedas" are irrelevant to dating of the sanskrit language, what exactly is the point of belaboring on that point in a thread which is trying to challenge the dating of the sanskrit language?


Again a bit of a "who-is-Sita" case. It has been clearly pointed out that the RV is not an admissible source for "dating" Sanskrit. That is of critical importance because it pulls out the rug from AIT/AMT/linguistic shenanigans. Read Shiv's posts as well.

This is a big assumption, that our authority extends to AIT/AMT/Linguistics crowd and we can command them to stop it! We are both exaggerating our authority as well as playing down their perseverance in undermining us!

The only way to enforce this would be perhaps the way Muslims do when somebody draws a Muhammad cartoon! It is a possibility, but are the learned Vedic scholars willing to adopt such a strategy!

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Re: Out-of-India - From Theory to Truth

Postby KLP Dubey » 02 Sep 2012 13:30

Arjun,

Arjun wrote:KLP ji, Wouldn't it be fair to say that we can only accept something as an axiom once we are sure what the axiom means? I see a slight dissonance in your statements that we haven't fully deciphered the Vedas yet, but it remains valid enough to be accepted as an epistemological axiom.


The axiom is very simple and clearly stated. The Vedic sounds are literally eternal. There is no confusion. Do you really think some of India's greatest philosophical thinkers like Kumarila and Shankara would have made elementary mistakes of this kind before building an entire philosophical edifice based on the Eternal Veda? Skepticism is very good, but one needs to defer (at least temporarily while one obtains the required knowledge) to well-informed input on the matter.

One of the reasons why Indians are sometimes not taken seriously in the west (by otherwise open-minded western scholarship), is the tendency to ignore/not read the literature and jump to conclusions based on very preliminary findings. They make buffoons of themselves. I will say that I am not including the "AIT/PIE linguistics" crowd in "open minded western scholarship", but the above approach turns off otherwise genuinely supportive people as well.

Again, unlike some others in the thread who are discovering brilliant "new" things, I am doing the decidedly "un-original" work of presenting the gist of well-known results. That being said, a little time in the library will make a big difference. The internet is not a reliable source of information in these matters.

Also, it seems to me that your position links up only with the Mimamsa school. Not sure if the other 5 philosophical schools of India agreed with Mimamsa on this issue - by most accounts Purva Mimamsa was eclipsed by the popularity of the later schools.


I take it your information is from the internet. Here is the correct information:

- Purva Mimamsa and Uttara Mimamsa (Vedanta) are the only Vedic-affiliated darshanas remaining. They have not been "eclipsed".

- Vedanta almost completely borrows the position of Mimamsa in this matter. They are strong allies here.

- As already mentioned, the other four schools (Nyaya-Vaisheshika and Sankhya-Yoga) are defunct. Yoga still survives in its practical aspects. There is a reason these schools ceased to function. They were "defeated" by Mimamsa and Vedanta.

- Strictly speaking, Mimamsa and Vedanta were always the "status quo" schools. The Eternal Veda was a status quo. This principle was passed down from generation to generation since time immemorial, so great was its importance. The other schools arose from time to time and thought it necessary to challenge this position, but their reasoning was shown to be incorrect.

Your position is a valid one and there needs to be a body of researchers pursuing your logic -


There already are. Obviously you are not aware of what the Mimamsa scholarship is in India. It is thriving and the Vedic pandits are enjoying a renaissance. I am not talking about western scholarship which is rather irrelevant to what Indians need to be thinking about. But even then, I do not think you looked through the article on Kumarila (by Prof. Dan Arnold, U of Chicago) that I posted earlier:

http://plato.stanford.edu/entries/kumaarila/

There is already significant interest (again) in Mimamsa in the west, if that "endorsement" is important to you.

but seems to me the Mimamsa position will remain a fringe one in science-based research,


I am getting a little worried about the nature of this discussion.

1) Sorry for the CAPS, but, my friend, I do not know how many more times to tell you that the Mimamsa position is the STATUS QUO position in Indian Inquiry (where it actually counts), and not a fringe position. What are you talking about ?

2) Are you really serious in claiming that this thread is about "Science-based" research? Let's get this straight. Science is about one thing alone: hypotheses that can be verified by repeatable experiments. Analysis of the past is NEVER science. It is a branch of humanities, and is NOT science-based. However, reason and logic are shared by all branches of inquiry, and in this matter, they alone can be used. However, reason and logic require an epistemic basis before they are applied, otherwise one will end up like the Buddhists.

All these aspects are carefully developed in Indian inquiry, and now you come along and are embarrassed about its conclusions. Not only is that a shame, you seem to place greater stock in people (both western and indian) who have absolutely not the faintest idea of where to get started in these disciplines and are just talking sheer nonsense without any education. That is the story of Indian decline. I have already said it: the tools for ethical inquiry do not exist among these folks. I hope they acquire these tools.

unless one can prove that some Law of Nature can be derived from the Vedas .


Such a "proof" is NEVER required. That is the nature of the pursuit of knowledge.

Let's not take the discussion into complete nihilism....and your position is starting to remind me of Buddhist skepticism, I must say.

Has science ever discovered a Law of Nature ? No. It only blunders through over the ages with approximations and corrections, and the quest for these laws is ETERNAL, but in that never-ending course we derive other benefits. Those benefits are the ones we might use (if we want) to "tangibly" judge the worth of a field of inquiry, not whether a "law of nature" has been discovered (nobody has yet done so by scientific or any other means). The only people who claim to "know all the laws of nature already" are mullahs and guys in frocks.

In the case of science, tangible benefits of the search for "laws of nature" are in the form of various types of technology. In the case of the Veda, I have already made a pretty long list of benefits derived by the Indians (and all Vedics) over the ages by trying to understand the Veda from different angles.

Last time I checked, the AIT/PIE/OIE linguistic arguments and theories have not conferred any benefits whatsoever on the human race or on Indians. Name even one ?

That would of course be a game changer...but until that event happens it would be futile to hope for even a large percentage of Indian academia (leave alone overseas) to agree with your position.


You have a misunderstanding that I hope to set at rest in this post.

I do not give a damn about getting "Indian academics to agree with my position". Unlike the distinguished gentlemen here, I am not on a mission to disprove the AIT and OIT and "prove" the eternality of the Veda. I am a BR member providing information and cautionary guidance based upon my rather long experience in this area, that hopefully will be read and understood. Those who understand will obtain the benefit. Those who choose to waste time on dating the RV using Sanskrit words will continue to do so.

As far as I am concerned, I am upholding the Veda and I am able to reproduce its sounds. That is what matters, consistent with the whole point that the Veda is eternal and the human race would do well to maintain the connection with these sounds.

My forthrightness in this matter should not be taken as any type of "anxiety" to get others to agree. I am happy to keep quiet. No more posts from me on this topic.

All the best!

KL
Last edited by KLP Dubey on 02 Sep 2012 14:10, edited 1 time in total.

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Re: Out-of-India - From Theory to Truth

Postby KLP Dubey » 02 Sep 2012 13:47

RajeshA wrote:I think the authority of the Vedas come from our belief in its authority and power, and as part of our belief we can even consider it an axiom of a certain philosophy, but for the unbelievers, it would be difficult to persuade logically that it is a scientific axiom.


Last attempt: In case you do not know, ALL axioms are beliefs, whether made by scientists, philosophers, matehmaticians, or whoever. I do not know of anybody in history that has had to persuade others that an "axiom is scientific" in order to be valid. Maybe you have a different exalted standard (which however, does not come through in the arguments you make).

Are you really thinking that what you are doing is "science" ? And is science the only valid means of inquiry (no I am not talking about meditation and spritualism) ?

I already told you, axioms are not arbitrary beliefs. They only become useful when one can construct a consistent branch of inquiry from them that withstands attempts at falsification.

When the entire edifice of Mimamsa and Vedanta (the bedrock of Indian ethos) is constructed from these axioms, and there are more than three millenia of the best thinkers - Indian and western - that have subjected Mimamsa and Vedanta axioms to rigorous analysis, it is preposterous of you to deny their validity without having any real knowledge of what they are.

As usual, the westerners are ahead of you again. It was the westerners in the 1900s who dismissed Mimamsa. You are parroting what they said 100 years ago because your "dhimmitude" is so great that it embarrasses you to speak of Mimamsa as a system of knowledge on a equal footing - or greater - than western philosophy. Yet it is now again the westerners who are coming back to Mimamsa and re-evaluating it and realizing its veracity. You are again left one step behind.

I don't see why this qualifier cannot be understood every time one makes any claim on the Vedas! Just like some use "pbuh"!

Just my views onlee!


RajeshA, by equating the Mimamsa view on the Veda with the theological views of mullahs - and they could not possibly be any further apart in reality - you have done about the greatest disservice possible to this thread and to what people will read here.

I wish you all the very best in your "scientific" and "logical" pursuits. I hope they succeed.

Best Wishes,

KL

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Re: Out-of-India - From Theory to Truth

Postby Arjun » 02 Sep 2012 14:34

KLP ji, what I and RajeshA ji are trying to point out is that to negate any system of philosophy or indeed any reason-based field of study - you would have to attempt this by coming up with a contradiction based on generally accepted sets of axioms of that particular field. Even Indian philosophy accepts this criteria. You cannot negate Buddhist philosophy based on Vedantic axioms nor can you negate Vedanta based on Buddhist axioms.

So, I am completely aware of the Eternality of the Vedas and the usefulness of the axiom in deriving sound results within the context of the metaphysical inquiries of Mimamsa and Vedanta. I don't question it in the least. What I do question is the feasibility of using the metaphysical axiom of Mimamsa/Vedanta in our understanding of history which in today's world is based on a different set of generally accepted axioms.

One way in which the generally accepted axioms of history and the axiom of eternality of the Vedas can be made to converge somewhat is through assuming that history is able to determine when the Vedic sounds were first heard and propagated by the Rishis.

It would be difficult to force a more radical interpretation on historians, academics and other science-beholden masses. And while *you* may not be concerned about that aspect - I see the aspect of convincing this huge set as the key aim of this thread.

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Re: Out-of-India - From Theory to Truth

Postby JE Menon » 02 Sep 2012 15:05

KLP Dubey,

First of all thank you for posting moderately and with patience.

>>The Veda is eternal and all-pervasive. They are always existing everywhere, so there is no question of "where they came from".

This is a claim. Not a fact. Having said that, there is a certain attraction to the thesis that you have been laying out in recent posts, because it has - IMHO - greater potential for scientific basis prima facie than the idea that some "angel" popped up out of nowhere, hugged the dude, and "compelled" him to recite (or "read" if one must be accurate) the "words of god"; or that another went to the mountain-top and got the low down from the main man (and these were men all the way). But it is just that, a claim that one can choose to believe, or not.

>>On the other hand, if by "where did they come from", you mean "how did it come into the consciousness of humans", that is a valid question to ask. Nobody knows - whatever happened is lost in time.

There you have hit on the nub of it. In short, the answer is "I don't know". And that is the real position. That being the case, it becomes rather difficult to then hold on in an absolute sense to the following (if that is what you are doing): "The Veda is eternal and all-pervasive. They are always existing everywhere" - unless, the position in a rather X-filian way is "I choose to believe". In my opinion, that is a perfectly valid state of mind. However, it is a claim and a belief.

>>Again in some sense, that is the whole point. If somebody could prove the event that occurred, then there would be no need for things like AIT and OIT.

Like you said, that is precisely the point. At the moment, no one knows, so whether the inquiry is directed towards AIT or OIT or any other source for the Vedas, it remains equally legitimate, even though it may not be equally likely to yield the ultimate answer to this question.

>>The AIT and OIT are playing a low-level game trying to prove that the RV was either composed outside India or inside India. Both these claims are immediately falsifiable.

I'm not clear where or on what basis the "low-level" nature of the game has been established. I'm also not sure exactly what you mean when you say "falsifiable"; in what sense do you mean it?

>>It is possible that the event of "humans connecting with the Veda" was terrestrial or extra-terrestrial. There is no evidence to falsify either possibility. Such questions are not unique to the Veda. People have all sorts of theories (both terrestrial and extra-terrestrial) about things like the origin of life, civilizations, etc.

If I understand what you are saying, and this is why I mentioned earlier that this seems to have the greatest potential for scientific validation, it is that there are a finite set of basic sounds in the universe permitted under the basic laws of nature, and all other sounds (and any combination thereof - in the form of language) are derived from it. The Vedas consist of these basic sounds, which were either intuited by those whom we call the rishis, or transmitted by extra-terrestrial agency. (Pls note that the latter has a "revelatory" component that is not fundamentally different from those of the other revealed religions - although in this case does it does not seem purport "a way to live", rather just a transmission of basic sounds undoubtedly in a certain order).

It also appears you are suggesting that the Vedas are only eternal sound with no "meaning". Maybe. However, the four Vedas as we know it have a meaning that people understand (even in roughly equivalent translations). The dispute is on the detail. Somehow, these basic eternal sounds were arranged in a way that lend meaning that people today can understand. I think what the thread appears to be trying to do is to find the source and timing of that arrangement. In that sense it perhaps should not be dismissed lightly.

>>Such inquiries may be ongoing but the important thing is that the eternal Vedic sound has never been falsified.

If my understanding above is right, then the notion that the "eternal Vedic sound" can be falsified itself is wrong. It is like saying light cannot be falsified.

@Shiv - thanks a lot for that explanation doc. I've been following the issue very much as a generalist over time, and matters are beginning to get confusing - what with all the multiple dates, theories within theories, etc. Gets hard to keep track (given that one has actually to make a living as well :) ). But it is certainly clear that this essentially colonial and anti-Semitic construct has begun to take some serious flack. No unwarranted respect is due these quacks. So thanks again.

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Re: Out-of-India - From Theory to Truth

Postby PrasadZ » 02 Sep 2012 15:12

KLP Dubey wrote:The Veda is eternal and all-pervasive. They are always existing everywhere, so there is no question of "where they came from".

On the other hand, if by "where did they come from", you mean "how did it come into the consciousness of humans", that is a valid question to ask. Nobody knows - whatever happened is lost in time. Again in some sense, that is the whole point. If somebody could prove the event that occurred, then there would be no need for things like AIT and OIT. The AIT and OIT are playing a low-level game trying to prove that the RV was either composed outside India or inside India. Both these claims are immediately falsifiable.

It is possible that the event of "humans connecting with the Veda" was terrestrial or extra-terrestrial. There is no evidence to falsify either possibility.

Such questions are not unique to the Veda. People have all sorts of theories (both terrestrial and extra-terrestrial) about things like the origin of life, civilizations, etc. Such inquiries may be ongoing but the important thing is that the eternal Vedic sound has never been falsified.

KL


KL-ji
If only the vedic sounds are true and all claims about vedic sounds are false, surely, all knowledge derived from the vedas is false, is it not ?! The argument sounds quite nihilistic to me.
If some knowledge is derivable from the vedas and expressible in another language, surely, it should be acceptable for AIT or OIT enthusiasts to debate the nature or validity of their particular derivation in english, if they choose?

update : sorry, JEM-ji, you have posted along the same lines and a lot better articulated !

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Re: Out-of-India - From Theory to Truth

Postby RajeshA » 02 Sep 2012 15:18

KLP Dubey wrote:
RajeshA wrote:I don't see why this qualifier cannot be understood every time one makes any claim on the Vedas! Just like some use "pbuh"!

Just my views onlee!


RajeshA, by equating the Mimamsa view on the Veda with the theological views of mullahs - and they could not possibly be any further apart in reality - you have done about the greatest disservice possible to this thread and to what people will read here.

I wish you all the very best in your "scientific" and "logical" pursuits. I hope they succeed.

Best Wishes,

KL

KLP Dubey ji,

I deliberately put that reference with "pbuh" there. I wanted to know whether your desire is to find a formulation that helps both sides preserve their standpoints, some way how both can pursue their efforts to deconstruct a Western assault, but you seem to be really interested in eating your cake and denying others a chance to fight Western propaganda.

I wanted to know if you will take your chance to walk out of the discussion or whether you will help find some common ground.

Your earlier formulation sounded quite encouraging, that is why I quoted it again! But no, you have not shown a willingness to show understanding for the problem at hand.

Your attacks at Talageri have been severe, without giving any logical explanation, but simply repeating your view that it is prohibited and then heaping scorn at him. You have also failed to explain why if somebody can read Vedas in Sanskrit, he should not understand the semantics in Sanskrit.

It would do the Vedas an enormous help if learned Vedic scholars would be able to develop an epistemology which would make the Vedas immune to Western attacks. But rather you would like to stick to a boat which was once good to keep back the challenges from Buddhism, Nyaya and Sankhya but today seems to be leaking from all sides! The Mimamsa scholars did their job well for their time! The question is what are the Mimamsa scholars doing today to meet the challenges of today! What was once philosophy has today simply become theology!

Hoping that one's authority would suffice to keep back the flood is really grasping at straws and shows a laziness to think creatively and come up with new strategies.

Rajiv Malhotra has also been scathing in his criticism of learned Vedic scholars who have failed to do purva paksha of the new ideologies from around the world, which basically has lost India the advantage we had earlier.

I agree that the "Vedas are eternal and authorless" but this position needs to be reconciled with the fact that the Vedas are a part of human society and there exists a language - Sanskrit, in which they can be interpreted quite well.

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Re: Out-of-India - From Theory to Truth

Postby Virendra » 02 Sep 2012 15:41

RajeshA wrote:Maya People and their Connection to India
Astronomical links between Mayans and Indians
http://arxiv.org/pdf/physics/0101076.pdf
The author's date for Mahabharat war is around 1400 BC but may be you can ignore that for the purpose of seeing what arguments and similarities he puts forth on Mayans and Indians.

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Re: Out-of-India - From Theory to Truth

Postby JwalaMukhi » 02 Sep 2012 18:50

KLP Dubey wrote:
JwalaMukhi wrote:Having said that "vedas" are irrelevant to dating of the sanskrit language, what exactly is the point of belaboring on that point in a thread which is trying to challenge the dating of the sanskrit language?


Again a bit of a "who-is-Sita" case. It has been clearly pointed out that the RV is not an admissible source for "dating" Sanskrit. That is of critical importance because it pulls out the rug from AIT/AMT/linguistic shenanigans. Read Shiv's posts as well.

What is the thesis of date/s of sanskrit language of those who want vedas to be not taken into picture? If there is no thesis other than saying that vedas are not to be used to date sanskrit, it doesn't add much information on the question that is in contention.


Sorry - you haven't been following. It makes a huge difference. See above.

KL

Sorry that's handwaving at its best.
Pick an answer:
1) Don't know when sanskrit can be placed.
2) cannot place the date/s for sanskrit. Because it is intractable.
3) Pir review says it is 1000 B.C. to 1200B.C.
4) Believe it is 10 B.C to 10 A.D.
5) No, will keep saying that pick a choice of body/branch of knowledge (thermodynamics, mathematics etc., vedas) and it should not be used to date sanskrit. Thanks that doesn't enhance any further light on the date of sanskrit. Does it? Other than saying two streams of thought are wrong.

P.S: Vedas are eternal etc., is not the question, the question is could you without the crutch of vedas place the date of sanskrit? Other than saying using that crutch will yield incorrect results.

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Re: Out-of-India - From Theory to Truth

Postby member_20317 » 02 Sep 2012 19:33

Bhai log,

Using RV as a historical document may at best be helpful only if it is used to trace the history of Poetry or Meditation because these are the human aspects for which these were created. In trying to use it for dating other human aspects things will begin to get dicey. KLP Dubey ji is not a historian and he has used what is there in RV (Sindhu) to attack both the positions. Relying on RV to date OIT is like relying on some novel by Hemingway to date the turn of WW1. It will only go to reduce the reliability of the OIT claims.

At the same time using RV as the Eternal vibes of the Reality provides certain benefits to humanity that are presently not served by any other source. There is little point in killing the hen that lays the golden eggs. Our people will need it as such and not as a supporting evidence for OIT.

Also please do notice that KLP Dubey ji is not asking you to desist from refuting the AIT claims using internal inconsistencies in the AIT interpretation of RV. In fact he himself is using that line of attack.

My suggestion for your kind consideration is to not use a Sword when the work requires only a Niddle.

AIT claim is so fantastic that there is no way it can be digested.

Aum Santih Santih Santih

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Re: Out-of-India - From Theory to Truth

Postby JwalaMukhi » 02 Sep 2012 19:43

Ravi_g ji,
That's one school of opinion that the position about "vedas" being unusable to make a case for sanskrit. Just because that opinion is present it doesn't make the gang of witzels to shiver in their boots and drop making association with that. So, if one has to take the position of being arbitrator, one better have a better theory that addresses the bone of contention, else it is vacuous at its best.

Having said that:
It is very important for us to recognize that there were true practicioners of vedas and revered sages "Valmiki" and "Veda Vyasas" were so seeped into vedic living that their works merit lot of considerations. I would go ahead and make a claim just as has been made previously, the puny later day vimarshakas do not hold a candle to the ture practicioneers who set concrete examples. If those sages put down some astronomical observations for the period when the composed their works, it can sufficiently be tested as done by Nilesh Oakji and used. So people who gratutiously advice others "to chant vedas" if one is seriously interested in promoting santana Dharma, one only can say "physician heal thyself".

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Re: Out-of-India - From Theory to Truth

Postby JwalaMukhi » 02 Sep 2012 20:03

BTW bringing in "vedas" being eternal and can only be truly understood by those who have transcended beyond confines of space and time is a master stroke like "anna Hazare campaign". It is by design, to take the focus away from the mundane and practical to bring lok-pal bill. No one will have anything to say against lok-pal, but is intended to let the guilty slip away. So, will give a free hand to AIT-Nazi with token slap on the wrist but will scathingly attack OIT proponents. How nice is that? In fact noble to discover the truth about "vedas" by removing the shackles of time and space. Mundane requires challenging the AIT-Nazis, the rest will follow.

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Re: Out-of-India - From Theory to Truth

Postby Murugan » 02 Sep 2012 20:18

Vedas cannot be dated because they are author-less !! We have to find other markers if we want to still find probable dates of the sound recorded. The versions of vedas at present are indexed versions by Ved-Vyas. Dates can be ascertained only of probable compilation time.

Antiquity using some verses of vedas lead to many thousand years BC from Archeoastronomy pov! And they may not be final still !! Who knows those celestial events were older.

All the authoritarian works can be dated very well:

1) Srimad Bhagvat
2) Valmiki Ramayan
3) Grammar works etc

Antiquity still to be ascertained of submerged
Dwarka
Ruins near Gulf of Cambat
Ruins found near Karnataka coast
Ruins found near Tamilnadu coast.
Last edited by Murugan on 02 Sep 2012 20:22, edited 2 times in total.

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Re: Out-of-India - From Theory to Truth

Postby JwalaMukhi » 02 Sep 2012 20:20

Again, trying to date vedas is a noble aspiration, but ultimately a very big distraction and not necessarily resolve the current problem posed by AIT-Nazis. The idea is to date "sanskrit" the mundane and urgent.

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Re: Out-of-India - From Theory to Truth

Postby vic » 02 Sep 2012 20:28

Can we say Vedas were basically mutated knowledge base of IVC/Harappa which was later written in new language i.e. Sanskrit.

Also as I said before the trader class in Northern west India have a tradition of code language. Could the unearthed fragments in IVC may be in code language (and different from our present perception of language known to all locals??)

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Re: Out-of-India - From Theory to Truth

Postby Arjun » 02 Sep 2012 20:33

It does not have to be an 'either-or' scenario... both schools can co-exist. Since most AIT arguments use historicity of the Vedas as an axiom - there needs to be a robust refutation of the AIT thesis, as well as development of an OIT thesis - that works using the same axiom. This is what Telegeri has achieved.

KLP and others can work with the same aim, using as axiom the eternal Vedas and the axiom that it is humanly impossible to date it. They are welcome to debunk the axiom of historicity of the Vedas - but to pull down Talegeri, who of all Indians has possibly achieved the most in developing a coherent OIT theory, is effectively shooting oneself in the foot.

I would personally place my bets on the former technique being more effective in winning converts - and from KL ji's statement that he is not out to win converts it would seem that he agrees. Working on getting the masses to learn the Vedas has tremendous other collateral benefits which KL ji outlined and I agree with - but converting the AIT crowd to OIT is not one of those benefits.

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Re: Out-of-India - From Theory to Truth

Postby member_20317 » 02 Sep 2012 21:09

Aside : But a tempting aside, so here goes.
Arjun wrote: I would personally place my bets on the former technique being more effective in winning converts - and from KL ji's statement that he is not out to win converts it would seem that he agrees. Working on getting the masses to learn the Vedas has tremendous other collateral benefits which KL ji outlined and I agree with - but converting the AIT crowd to OIT is not one of those benefits.


Arjun ji, I have not read Vedas. But I would believe in a line of thought that has stood the test of time. KLP Dubey ji has stated that he is not out to win converts, could just as easily imply an overriding confidence in ‘Vedas are Eternal’ school of thought. He has stated that this line has not been successfully attacked in last 2500 years. In fact the main problem with even the OIT will remain that the ‘gap’ in history is so long and so deep that there is no way to bridge it by trying to look for evidences. In such a case the gap can only be accepted and something put in its place to least begin to understand it. I, in fact am and will remain interested in knowing about the progress of the ‘Vedas are sources of OIT history’ school. Not because I see it as a competing system. I do see it as a cooperative system. But because I would be interested in knowing how to chew such a big piece of something and then how to swallow it and then eventually digest it. It carries a challenge value that I see in the Indian Movie Heros that I so revere.

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Re: Out-of-India - From Theory to Truth

Postby SaiK » 02 Sep 2012 21:10

Multiple schools exists because of semantic false values in one over the other theory. When proofs evaluate the semantic truth [assuming one can prove one-BS not-equal another-BS too], then automagically we would have some Al.QED to this whole invasion aspect of vedic/dharmic/sanskrit ways of living.

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Re: Out-of-India - From Theory to Truth

Postby shiv » 02 Sep 2012 21:32

Witzel is important in this debate because he has written so much that his name crops up everywhere. Most India AIT sepoys and all western sources, AIT Nazis or not quote him.

To understand the issue, it is necessary to understand Witzel. I will make a post about Witzels style, but I first need to speak about a REAL Nazi called Wolfram von Soden who was a very famous "Assyriologist" born in 1908. He apparenty wrote well and was partly responsible for shaping the Nazi worldview. First I will post an image of several selected passages from a book talking about "Assyriology" in general and a desciption of what W. von Soden did.

Note that assyria had all those Akkadian texts that were translated as a result of the work done by Brit Rawlinson on the Behistun texts, and the Mitanni texts too were Assyrian. read the following excepts in full - they may seem disjointed - they are taken from different pages but it tells you what von Soden was up to. Later I will point out how Witzel has used von Soden in his Indological work. The significance of the Mitanni texts is mentioned, I will comment on it later

From:Assyriology, Orientalism, and the Bible, Sheffield 2006, 74-94. more
by Eckart Frahm

Image

This passage is significant because the Mittni texts were initially thought to represent a victorious Aryan race, but after WW@ the same texts were said to represent a brutal quest for power by military mans. hence it is necessary to show the :"Aryans" as a despotic marauding people who ultimately gave rise to the savage caste system in India, just as they overran all other countries by force (of horse and chariot). I will expand on how Witzel has used von Soden later.

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Re: Out-of-India - From Theory to Truth

Postby Arjun » 02 Sep 2012 22:10

ravi_g wrote:Arjun ji, I have not read Vedas. But I would believe in a line of thought that has stood the test of time. KLP Dubey ji has stated that he is not out to win converts, could just as easily imply an overriding confidence in ‘Vedas are Eternal’ school of thought. He has stated that this line has not been successfully attacked in last 2500 years. In fact the main problem with even the OIT will remain that the ‘gap’ in history is so long and so deep that there is no way to bridge it by trying to look for evidences. In such a case the gap can only be accepted and something put in its place to least begin to understand it. I, in fact am and will remain interested in knowing about the progress of the ‘Vedas are sources of OIT history’ school. Not because I see it as a competing system. I do see it as a cooperative system. But because I would be interested in knowing how to chew such a big piece of something and then how to swallow it and then eventually digest it. It carries a challenge value that I see in the Indian Movie Heros that I so revere.

Ravi ji,

Western Indologists, linguists, philologists, archeologists are going to continue to write papers that assume AMT. So the corpus of academic literature that assumes AMT or purports to prove it will continue to grow into the foreseeable future. That is my first assumption. Are we saying that 'Eternality of the Vedas' argument will convince this bunch from not using horse/chariot arguments that are based on historicity of the Vedas? Absolutely not - this bunch will not be convinced. Do let me know if you feel differently.

So in response to the ever-growing bunch of AMT academic literature, what should the Indian response be? In case the response is that all of this does not matter - all that matters is the faith that individual Hindus have, that's not a line of thinking I am in agreement with. Belief in eternality of the Vedas does help in each individual's faith in the religion - but it does nothing to help the cause of countering the growing AMT literature with equally effective anti-AMT / OIT literature.

If the AMT crowd is using the Vedas to field horse/chariot arguments, why should the Anti-AIT bunch have to carry the additional burden of not being able to use the Vedas-based Soma argument or the East-to-West migration found in the Vedas (both highlighted by Talegeri)?

Let me emphasize again that my outlook is purely driven by which method I believe has a greater chance of winning more converts and produce more effective literature (books, academic papers) that can match up to the other side. I am not wedded to my stance. Its analogous to trading in stocks. I think one stock will do better - so I bet on it. If you can prove to me or show through research that another stock is likely to outperform - I am happy to sell my current stock and buy into the new one.

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Re: Out-of-India - From Theory to Truth

Postby KLP Dubey » 02 Sep 2012 23:02

Arjun wrote:Even Indian philosophy accepts this criteria. You cannot negate Buddhist philosophy based on Vedantic axioms nor can you negate Vedanta based on Buddhist axioms.


I do not know on what basis you are able to make that claim. Buddhist reasoning has been very conclusively negated with Vedic (not Vedantic) axioms. And not the other way round! You need to delve into the issues surrounding that before making such claims.

Fact is, the Buddhist philosophy, in order to arise, had to make exactly diametrically opposite claims as the Vedic school (otherwise there would be little justification for their existence). However they found that in order to survive, they had to start borrowing one after the other many of the same principles of Vedic and Vedantic thinking. At the end of the day, as was inevitable, the basic inconsistencies in this approach were exposed and the Buddhists had to admit defeat.

The unfolding of the Vedic-Buddhist confrontation was an object lesson in the triumph of reason over irrationality. So my request to you: do not make wild claims based upon some internet source that there is still a stalemate of some kind.

What I do question is the feasibility of using the metaphysical axiom of Mimamsa/Vedanta in our understanding of history which in today's world is based on a different set of generally accepted axioms.


I hope you do realize how absurd your statement is. First of all, yes indeed, the whole point is that you CANNOT understand history with the Veda. Even if such a pursuit is deemed worthwhile, it unfortunately cannot be done. Live with that. It seems you are more keen to force-fit history into the Veda when it cannot be done.

Furthermore, it looks like you are more interested in "fashionable" methods rather than pursuit of the truth.

One way in which the generally accepted axioms of history and the axiom of eternality of the Vedas can be made to converge somewhat is through assuming that history is able to determine when the Vedic sounds were first heard and propagated by the Rishis.


And, my dear friend, MANY other veru serious and brilliant thinkers have in the past already tried that and failed. There is a huge literature on that already. Again, your whole attitude here is that you have stumbled upon some brilliant new way of thinking and nobody else knows about it.

Sir, the thesis of Nyaya-Vaisheshika philosophy was exactly the same as what you are saying above. And it was shown to be false. Please read the very detailed reasoning of Vachaspati, Udayana, and Jayanta on this subject. All their main works are available, and are discussed in detail by Ganganath Jha (arguably the foremost exponent of Nyaya in the modern age) in his 4-volume work on the Nyaya-Sutras and their commentaries. It is interesting to note that Ganganath Jha, a lifelong Nyaya-exponent, then wrote a work on the Mimamsa philosophy and in fact promoted its position explicitly.

And you may not be aware that western scholarship, which seems so terribly important to you in your anxiety to appear "modern", also concurs that the Nyaya attack on the Mimamsa principle was misplaced and not defensible. Now if you want to give it another go, feel free. But you need to be aware of the literature if you want to be taken seriously.

And by the way, the statement that "history is able to determine when the Vedic sounds we heard" is just laughable, honestly. "History" has no such capability. Its mandate is simply to record events in a reliable and cross-verified manner. We simply have no such reliable records to go by in this case.

It would be difficult to force a more radical interpretation on historians, academics and other science-beholden masses. And while *you* may not be concerned about that aspect - I see the aspect of convincing this huge set as the key aim of this thread.


Unfortunately, this is a case where irrationality is trying to triumph over reason. I will not argue about that anymore, but I want to say that your interpretation of Indian thinking is already so distorted by your desire to adhere to "western" thought, that you have absolutely no hope of any victory. When you do not hesitate the greatest achievements of Indians themselves as "radical" interpretations, what hope do you have of defeating outsiders (who by the way, are well aware of your basic insecurities and are past masters in exploiting them) ?

It seems Indians are India's worst enemy.

KL

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Re: Out-of-India - From Theory to Truth

Postby Adrija » 02 Sep 2012 23:18

OT Alert

Doc, have you read this book, came out only this week

http://www.flipkart.com/krishna-key-9381626685/p/itmdayz59gtzmq22?pid=9789381626689&ref=67eb4f97-c931-4462-aee3-0651c7c08d42

Worth disseminating.....books like this will help immeasurably amongst the mango Macualay-ized Indian in increasing awareness of the AIT fraud

OT Alert OFF

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Re: Out-of-India - From Theory to Truth

Postby Arjun » 02 Sep 2012 23:52

KL ji,

I don't quite agree with several of your arguments above - but whether we get to agree on the philosophy part or not is really immaterial to me, so I will not even bother replying. Countering AMT and the most effective means in realizing this aim, is the key concern here - & if you believe you are better at countering AMT than Talegeri was, I think we would all be happy to hear you out.

The primary questions then boil down to-

1- Do you believe your argument of 'Eternality of the Vedas' can dissuade Western Indologists/ philologists/linguists/ archeologists from using the horse/chariot argument which are based on a literal interpretation of the Vedas? (Yes/No)

2- In case answer to 1 is No, do you believe your argument can produce a more effective counter-response that would be accepted by scientifically-minded folks globally, whether Indians or non-Indians - than say an anti-AMT argument based on historicity of the Vedas like Talegeri's? (Yes/No)

If your response for any of the above is Yes, do give us your reasons so we can take the appropriate call.

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Re: Out-of-India - From Theory to Truth

Postby KLP Dubey » 03 Sep 2012 00:56

RajeshA: Same is the case with the word "sindhavaḥ" in RV_05.53.07! Using the River "Sindhu", one can refer to various streams as a collective!

This is one modest effort to provide an example of an explanation and interpretation. I have heard however the argument that because some people have a difficulty interpreting Rig Veda because of the poetry in it (if understood as Sanskrit text), its Sanskritic interpretation is in fact wholly inconsistent and as such a false way to look at it!


OK, let us get back to some specific discussion, leaving aside for a moment the overarching validity of the "eternal and authorless Veda" principle. I appreciate the "modest effort" but I am telling you it is not logically and rationally viable.

The use of the Rk 5.53.9 to project "Sindhu" as the name of the Indus river is first of all nailed lock stock and barrel by the appearance of the plural "sindhavah" just two Rks above in 5.53.7. Fact of the matter is "sindhu" is not a proper noun here. This also exposes the tendency of both AIT and OIT quacks to lift words from here and there without regard to the context.

Secondly, there is a detailed and reasoned discussion in Mimamsa regarding so-called "proper nouns" indicating names of people, places etc in the Veda. The dispassionate conclusion is that such names cannot be really proper nouns but rather have been *assigned* as personal/place names by humans in history.

Nevertheless Talageri, ManishH, and various other AIT/OIT disputants ignore the literature and decide to use claims of proper nouns to decide georgraphical locations. If you still want to assume that you can use the word "sindhu" to refer to "various streams as a collective" (now we start twisting and turning) then you are faced with a bigger problem. How big was the collective stream? There could be anywhere from 3 to an infinite number of streams. How many ? How widely were they spaced ? None of these questions are answered, instead one now moves on with another arbitrary assumption while leaving all the original assumptions unverified.

Let's dig a little deeper:

E.g., Anitabha from 5.53.9 appears just once in RV but is arbitrarily claimed to also be a river, just because it was mentioned along with Sindhu! Absolutely no other reason. So now one assumption is contingent upon the other, and it can't even be cross-checked.

Similarly, Rasa, which is also mentioned in 5.53.9 along with Anitabha ("rasAnitabhA") is claimed to be a real river, whereas in the other two locations in RV itself it cannot be claimed to be so at all. See 9.41 and 10.108 where it is mentioned again. "sarA rasEva vishTapam". Nirukta (section 2.14) lists two assigned meanings for "vishTap": "the sun" and "the sky". Pick either one. So now you have to postulate a river which for some reason the "Vedic poet" thought was so important that it flows in the sun and the sky just like soma (which BTW is the subject of RV 9.41)!

Forget Sindhu then, tell me about this river instead. Again nirukta (section 11.25) lists an assignment for "rasA": it is assigned a derivation from the root "ras" meaning to make a roaring sound. In RV 10.108.1/2 (which is to do with the subject of Sarama and the Panis), it says "rasAyA atarah/ataram payAmsi". Now "payAmsi" itself (plural of "payas") is assigned the meaning of "milk" in the Nirukta (section 2.5), and not "water". Some people have gone ahead and interpreted "rasAyA payAmsi" as "waters of rasa" with no justification whatsoever, except their hurry to identify it as a river. So now you have a "river of milk flowing in the sun (or the sky)."

You can see clearly that these assignments are based upon a long, long series of dubious, unsubstantiated claims and unchecked assumptions. Can any sane and "scientifically-oriented" (since that term seems very popular around here) person defend this type of quackery ?

I don't know about you, but as for myself, having published so far 65 scientific papers which have been cited more than 1500 times (i.e. *I have to make sure what I am saying is reliable because many people actually read it and will check it one day*), I can't bring myself to agree with this utter nonsense.

Furthermore, as I mentioned already, the name and place assignments made by humans have always been changing and are not reliable. It is quite obvious in the Indian literature. We absolutely do not have any independent and cross-checkable testimonies for how these words were assigned. It seems people do not understand this basic fact.

There are some things you just have to live with. If you want to date Sanskrit, do not use the RV, which is not in the Sanskrit language. Use other literature which actually is written in Sanskrit. Take the ethical route.

KL

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Re: Out-of-India - From Theory to Truth

Postby Rahul M » 03 Sep 2012 01:01

@KLP Dubey, if you want to discuss the vedas as eternal, without creators, beginning or end etc etc, please use the epics, texts kathas etc thread in GDF, spare this one.

any further discussions on those lines in this thread would not be tolerated.
-R

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Re: Out-of-India - From Theory to Truth

Postby KLP Dubey » 03 Sep 2012 01:09

Rahul M wrote:@KLP Dubey, if you want to discuss the vedas as eternal, without creators, beginning or end etc etc, please use the epics, texts kathas etc thread in GDF, spare this one.

any further discussions on those lines in this thread would not be tolerated.
-R


Read my most recent post. It is very specific and contains only discussion about AIT/OIT attempts to "date" the RV.

I can conclusively demolish all the arguments of these AIT/OIT guys *without ever having to take recourse to any "Veda is eternal" principle.. But I do not want to drag myself into these silly arguments beyond a point.

To avoid endless discussion based on unviable premises, and in order to provide these individuals an epistemic basis for their arguments - in the hope that an enlightened dialogue can emerge - I have made a few posts clarifying the overarching "eternal Veda" principle.

I already mentioned last night that I don't intend to write about it again since I have stated it very clearly by now.

I hope you - as forum moderator - wisely understand this position.

Best Wishes,

KL

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Re: Out-of-India - From Theory to Truth

Postby Rahul M » 03 Sep 2012 01:20

please feel free to do so (demolish AIT/OIT without using vedas are eternal). but that line of reasoning should go only in the indicated thread.

I hadn't read your last post at the time of posting.

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Re: Out-of-India - From Theory to Truth

Postby ramana » 03 Sep 2012 04:43

Dubeyji, I request you to make your case in another thread. If you want one for your topic only.

ramana

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Re: Out-of-India - From Theory to Truth

Postby SaiK » 03 Sep 2012 05:34

Did we really arrive at a set of data, from which we could derive the truth yet? I am all confused .. as I am waiting for Rajesh A to muse a summary.

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Re: Out-of-India - From Theory to Truth

Postby shiv » 03 Sep 2012 05:51

Dubeyjis viewpoint should neither be dismissed nor argued against for the simple reason that it can be used politically in the favor of the anti AIT group.

The argument goes like this:

" While people who really know the Rig Veda are of the opinion that it does not represent a text at all but cosmic sounds and that the Vedas are eternal and authorless, this fundamental fact about the Vedas has escaped the attention of self styled Sanskrit scholars who have chosen argue about inane data points gleaned from translations of the Rig veda which by definition cannot represent the Veda at all once the sounds are dissociated from the Veda. The Veda were transmitted orally for millennia because they are fundamentally a phonological work of ancient origin and not designed to exist or be transmitted in in any other form. This in fact, according to scholars who know the Veda in their original, form explains why "meanings" can be so obscure. The only meanings that were meant to be taken from the Vedas exist in the sounds as have been chanted for thousands of years across India.

It would be one thing if these arguments that purport to use "internal meanings and timelines" from the Veda could stand the test of logic and reason even as they are a fundamentally flawed and worthless premise from the viewpoint of the Veda itself. It is ludicrous that a misused and misapplied "text" of the Rig Veda is needed to support otherwise untenable arguments about the spread of Indo-European languages -arguments that would not survive in the absence of deliberate misuse and misinterpretation of a text which is not the Veda itself since the later loses all meaning once the original sounds encoded in Sanskrit are discarded. The so called texts of the Vedas translated and meaningless are a feeble crutch in the promotion of the theories of a small clique of verbose if self styled "Vedic" scholars.


I ever write a book that includes some of these issues I am certain to employ the arguments that Dubey-ji has made.

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Re: Out-of-India - From Theory to Truth

Postby member_23700 » 03 Sep 2012 06:17

shiv wrote:Dubeyjis viewpoint should neither be dismissed nor argued against for the simple reason that it can be used politically in the favor of the anti AIT group.


I decided neither to dismiss nor argue against Dubeyji's viewpoint for a completely different reason. Shiv, your reasons are valid. There are many additional reasons to do this. Same applies to viewpoints of SP Rajan, ManishH etc., for varied different reasons. Different rationale, same desired outcome.

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Re: Out-of-India - From Theory to Truth

Postby shiv » 03 Sep 2012 06:35

The discussion in this thread is about the direction spread of Indo-European languages from one place to another. The idea that they must have spread is not under dispute, since they occur over a very large area. What is not known is the timeline of such spread and any area of origin.

Does Sanskrit have a date?
The Rig Veda is not considered to mention iron, so it must be before the 1200 to 1000 BC period.

The Atharva Veda apparently mentions iron and has been associated with the Kuru clan of Haryana occupying an area between the saraswati and the Ganga as per Wiki. The iron age in India is said to have started around 1200 BC at the latest by 1000 BC. So the Atharva Veda has been dated to the 1200 to 1000 BC period.

The Atharva veda mentions the Magadhas. The early known capital of the Magadha empire is in Bihar - Rajgriha (Rajgir) a pure Indo-European name, which has archaeological evidence of human occupation from 1000 BC. The Magadha empire is mentioned in the Ramayana as well. Ayodhya was a city in the Ramayana.

What this means is that by the time the Atharva veda and the Ramayana, an Indo-European peopled towns or cities existed as far east as Bihar. The Rig Veda was from an earlier era in which neiher iron, nor towns and cities are mentioned. If the Atharva Veda is dated to 1200 to 1000 BC, the Rig Veda must be dated back to around 1500 BC making it roughly contemporaneous with the Mitanni texts 2000 km away, and older than Avestan, dated to 1200 BC (by the usual bunch of culprits :D )

What this means is that the direction of movement of language cannot be proven to be from west to east on the internal evidence of the vedas in the form of the earliest mention of iron in translations of the Atharva Veda.

We have earlier seen that the horse evidence exists n the Indus valley civilization from 2000 BC. If the horse arrived earlier and the language later he idea that the people who brought the horse must have brought the language too is unsupportable on the basis of hard archaeological fact (hard as fossilized horse bones :mrgreen: ) unless the language of the Indus Valley civilization can be shown to be Indo-European.

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Re: Out-of-India - From Theory to Truth

Postby shiv » 03 Sep 2012 08:05

Like I said earlier, it is important to read Witzel and I can see from this thread that even people who support Witzel or choose to post humongous passages from Witzel's exceedingly voluminous works do not actually read what he has written other than what catches their eye as being supportive of their viewpoint. I deem it necessary to see what else Witzel writes in his "scholarly, peer reviewed" papers. The words "peer review" reflect very poorly on Witzel's peers because it shows them up to be as biased as Witzel himself.

If I were to judge BRFites I would judge them as being more science and data oriented than rhetoric oriented. Witzel too talks of "hard facts" when he needs to talk about himself and be critical of those who disagree with him, but his papers are full of rhetoric and sarcastic ad homiem. I find it painful to get people on here who use these papers as knowledge and ask for "peer reviewed" data against Witzel's views. if peer review is the sort of trash that appears in Witzels "schoalarly works - then peer review beocmes very easy for me indeed for the emulation of trash and rhetoric.

For example, taking quotes from his 118 page textual Blitzkrieg from which we have already had stupendously long quotes earlier posted by SN-Rajanji
http://www.people.fas.harvard.edu/~witzel/EJVS-7-3.pdf

Here is what Witzel says about SS Misra in a footnote using his Harvard style pirethetical reference system:
71No doubt due to his complete (self-imposed?) scholarly isolation at Benares. His (lone?) trip to an
international meeting in Dushanbe, duly noted in his introduction his 1992 book, provided him with some
contacts, -- unfortunately not the best ones, see his rather uncritical use of Harmatta's materials (below § 12.2,
n.97).


Talageri and Elst get this from Witzel, for daring to put up a stand against his schLOLarly Panzerdivision
70Talageri, though mentioning --unlike other OIT advocates-- the value of linguistics (2000: 415), merely lists
some words and compares them as look-alikes, in Nirukta fashion. Data are listed and discussed without any
apparent linguistic background and with lack of any critical, linguistic faculty. Elst is better prepared
philologically and linguistically, yet still lacks linguistic sophistication; his linguistic evaluation (1999: 118 sqq,
137) is lacuneous and misses much of what is discussed in this paper; this lack is substituted for by a lot of
gratuitous speculation of when and how the hypothetical Indian Indo-Europeans could have emigrated from
India.


But what really tickled me is that even in this 2001 paper Witzel is clearly hurt by the internet and the democratization of knowledge that it brought about. The internet sources chipping at him ARE important because he does not like them
74The list of such internet and printed publications waxes greatly, by the month. There now exists a closely knit,
self-adulatory group, members of which often write conjointly and/or copy from each other. Quite boringly, they
also churn out long identical passages, in book after book, sometimes paragraph by paragraph, all copied in
cottage industry fashion from earlier books and papers; the whole scene has become one virtually
indistinguishable hotchpotch. A 'canonical' list would include, among others: Choudhury 1993, Elst 1999,
Danino 1996, Feuerstein, Kak, and Frawley 1995, Frawley 1994, Kak 1994, Klostermaier (in Rajaram and
Frawley 1997), Misra 1992, Rajaram 1993, 1995, Rajaram and Frawley 1995, 1997, Rajaram and Jha 2000, Sethna
1980, 1981, 1989, 1992, Talageri 1993, 2000. Among them, Choudhury stands somewhat apart by his extreme
chauvinism. -- These and many others frequent the internet with letters and statements ranging from scholarly
opinions and prepublications to inane accusations and blatant politics and hate speech; such ephemeral 'sources'
are not listed here; I have, however, been collecting them as they will form interesting source material for a study
of the landscape of (expatriate) Indian mind of the late 20th and early 21st centuries.

.. so Witzel wants to study the "landscape of (expatriate) Indian mind of the late 20th and early 21st centuries."
Witzel is a man after my own heart. He applies piskology like a master. But it is a game that two can play! :D I don't suppose he would want to study the minds of those Indians who support him. But I could do that no?

This post is long enough, so I will save more data from his paper to show how low his Stuka dive bomber can dive while he uses weasely rhetoric passed off as scholarship, egged on as a respected Pir by his sepoy cheerleaders for another post.
Last edited by shiv on 03 Sep 2012 09:36, edited 1 time in total.


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