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India is about 1/3 the size of the United States, India is the seventh largest country in the world, the second most populous country in the world. ● ● India is the largest democracy in the world. ● ● The Kumbh Mela (or Grand Pitcher Festival) is a huge Hindu religious festival that takes place in India every 12 years. In 2001, 60 million people attended, breaking the record for the world’s biggest gathering. The mass of people was photographed from space by a satellite. ● ● To avoid polluting the elements (fire, earth, water, air), followers of Zoroastrianism in India don’t bury their dead, but instead leave bodies in buildings called “Towers of Silence” for the vultures to pick clean. ● ● India has one of the world’s highest rates of abortion. ● ● Most Indians live on less than two dollars a day. ● ● Cows are considered one of humankind’s seven mothers because they offer milk as does one’s natural mother. ● ● Dancing is one of India’s most highly developed arts and was an integral part of worship in the inner shrines of every temple. It is notable for its expressive hand movements. ● ● Many Indian wives will never say their husband’s name aloud, as it is a sign of disrespect. When addressing him, the wife will use several indirect references, such as “ji” or “look here” or “hello,” or even refer to him as the father of her child. ● ● The Indian flag has three horizontal bands of color: saffron for courage and sacrifice, white for truth and peace, and green for faith, fertility, and chivalry. An emblem of a wheel spinning used to be in the center of the white band, but when India gained independence, a Buddhist dharma chakra, or wheel of life, replaced the spinning wheel. ● ● ● ● ● The temples of Khajuraho are famous for their erotic sculptures and are one of the most popular tourist attractions in India. Scholars still debate the purpose of such explicit portrayals of sexual intercourse, which sometimes involve animals. ● ● The earliest cotton in the world was spun and woven in India. ● ● The Himalayas—from the Sanskrit hima, meaning “snow,” and alaya, meaning “abode”—are found in the north of India. They extend 1,500 miles and are slowly growing taller, by almost an inch (2.5 cm) a year. Several ancient Indian monasteries are found nestled in the grandeur of these mountains. ● ● With 150,000 post offices, India has the largest postal network in the world. ● ● The Bengal tiger is India’s national animal. ● ● Alexander the Great of Macedon (356-323 B.C.) was one of the first important figures to bring India into contact with the West. After his death, a link between Europe and the East would not be restored until Portuguese explorer Vasco da Gama (1460-1524) landed in Calicut, India, in 1498. ● ● The British Raj, or British rule, lasted from 1858 to 1947 (although they had a strong presence in India since the 1700s). British influence is still seen in Indian architecture, education system, transportation, and politics. ● ● Every major world religion is represented in India. Additionally, Hinduism, Buddhism, Jainism, and Sikhism all originated in India. ● ● India has the world’s largest movie industry, based in the city of Mumbai (known as the “City of Dreams”). The B in “Bollywood” comes from Bombay, the former name for Mumbai. Almost all Bollywood movies are musicals. ● ● Mohandas K. Gandhi (1869-1948) is known around the world as Mahatma, which is an honorific title meaning “Great Soul” in the ancient Indian language of Sanskrit. ● ● ● ● ● The lotus is sacred to both Hindus and Buddhists. ● The Bahá'í house of worship in Delhi, known as the “Lotus Temple,” is shaped like a lotus flower with 27 gigantic “petals” that are covered in marble. ● ● The banyan, or Indian fig tree, is considered a symbol of immortality and is mentioned in many Indian myths and legends. This self-renewing plant is India’s national tree. ● ● Marigold flowers are used as decoration for Hindu marriages and are a symbol of good fortune and happiness. ● ● The name “India” derives from the River Indus, which most likely is derived from the Sanskrit sindhu, meaning “river.” The official Sanskrit name of India is Bharat, after the legendary king in the epicMahabharata. ● ● Indians made significant contributions to calculus, trigonometry, and algebra. The decimal system was invented in India in 100 B.C. The concept of zero as a number is also attributed to India. ● ● The national fruit of India is the mango. The national bird is the peacock, which was initially bred for food. ● ● Hindi and English are the official languages of India. The government also recognizes 17 other languages (Assamese, Bengali, Gujarati, Nepali, Manipuri, Konkani, Kannada, Kashmiri, Malayalam, Marathi, Oriya, Punjabi, Sanskrit, Sindhi, Tamil, Telugu, and Urdu). Apart from these languages, about 1,652 dialects are spoken in the country. ● ● India has the world’s third largest road network at 1.9 million miles. It also has the world’s second largest rail network, which is the world’s largest civilian employer. ● ● Bathing in the Ganges in particular is thought to take away a person’s sins. It is not unusual to spread a loved one’s ashes in the Ganges. ● ● Most Indians rinse their hands, legs, and face before eating a meal. ● ● It is traditional to wear white, not black, to a funeral in India. Widows will often wear white in contrast to the colorful clothes of married or single women. ● ● India is the world’s largest tea producer, and tea (chai) is its most popular beverage. ● ● The Taj Mahal (“crown palace”) was built by Mughal Emperor Shah Jahan (1592-1666) for his beloved wife Mumtaz Mahal (1593-1631). Made of marble it has intricate workmanship. It took 22,000 workmen 22 years to complete it. ● ● The first and greatest civilization in ancient India developed around the valley of the Indus River (now Pakistan) around 3000 B.C. Called the Indus Valley civilization, this early empire was larger than any other empire, including Egypt and Mesopotamia. ● ● After the great Indus Civilization collapsed in 2000 B.C., groups of Indo-Europeans called Aryans (“noble ones”) traveled to northwest India and reigned during what is called the Vedic age. The mingling of ideas from the Aryan and Indus Valley religions formed the basis of Hinduism, and the gods Shiva, Kali, and Brahma all have their roots in Aryan civilization. The Aryans also recorded the Vedas, the first Hindu scriptures, and introduced a caste system based on ethnicity and occupation. ● ● Chandragupta Maurya (340-290 B.C.), a leader in India who established the Mauryan Empire (321-185 B.C.), was guarded by a band of women on horseback. ● Sanskrit is the mother of all the European ● languages. Sanskrit is the most suitable language for computer software reported in Forbes magazine, ● July 1987. ● Ayurveda is the earliest school of medicine known to humans.Charaka, the father of medicine consolidated Ayurveda 2500 years ago. ● India never invaded any country in her last 10,000 years of history. ● India invented the Number System. Zero was invented by Aryabhatta. ● India never invaded any country in her last 10,000 years of history. ● India invented the Number System. Zero was invented by Aryabhatta. ● ● India never invaded any country in her last 10,000 years of history. ● India invented the Number System. Zero was invented by Aryabhatta. ● ●
Vimana: The Ancient Indian Aerospace Craft

Early Mathematical concepts

India is known to have given to the world most major concepts of mathematics, some as far back as 1200 BC. Aryabhata, Brahmagupta, and Bhaskara were famous mathematicians of the period 400 to 1200 AD. The concept of zero, the decimal system, negative numbers, arithmetic and algebra were Indian contributions. Trigonometric functions sine and cosine were added by ancient Indians. Even practical mathematics covering measures of length, proportions, ratios, weights, geometric shapes were also evolved. Large numbers from 100 to a trillion were in use in Vedic period. For construction those days Pythagorean Theorem and geometric area equivalence were used. India is estimated to have about thirty million manuscripts dating back to 700 BC. The knowledge of Mathematics was germane to scientific research.

The Ancient References

The Sanskrit word ‘Vimana’ (meaning a part that has been measured and set aside) first appeared in Vedas with several meanings ranging from temple or palace to mythological flying machine. References to these flying machines were common in ancient Indian texts, even describing their use in warfare, and being able to fly within Earth's atmosphere. Vimanas were also said to be able to travel into space and under water. The Sun and Indra and several other Vedic deities were transported by flying wheeled chariots pulled by animals, usually horses, but others like the "agnihotra-vimana" (Agni means fire) with two engines and the "gaja-vimana" (Elephant powered) were known. Rigveda also talks of “mechanical birds”. Later texts around 500 BC talk of self-moving aerial car without animals. In some modern Indian languages, the word vimana means aircraft.

As per Ramayana Pushpaka (the flowery Chariot) was originally made by Vishwakarma for Brahma the Hindu god of creation. Brahma gifted it to Kubera, the God of wealth, but was stolen, along with Lanka, by his half-brother, the demon king Ravana. It reportedly resembled the sun, and could go everywhere at will. There are mentions of Lord Rama using it, and under the command of Raghira (Captain), the chariot reportedly rose up into the higher atmosphere. This celestial self-propelled car was large, had two stories and many chambers with windows, and was draped with flags and banners.

By the time of the Mahabharata (400 BC), these flying chariots had grown in size but they never lost the large wheels. Mahabharata mentions the genius Yavanas as creator (Chief Designer) of a finite dimensioned Vimana with four solid wheels owned by Asura Maya. Jain literature talks of the various Tirthamkaras flying different types of flying machines. Starting from the 4th tirthamkara travelling in Jayanta Vimana, to the very famous 24 th Tirthamkara Mahavira emerging out of a great Vimana Pushpa-uttara.

Recent Studies

Mr. G. R. Josyer, former Director of the International Academy of Sanskrit Research in Mysore, claimed that the Academy had collected manuscripts that were compiled by ancient rishis thousands of years ago. One manuscript dealt with Aeronautics, construction of various types of aircraft for civil aviation and for warfare. Designs and drawing of a helicopter-type cargo plane, specially meant for carrying combustibles and ammunition, and a double and treble-decked passenger aircraft carrying 400 to 500 persons were recorded.
Vaimanika Shastra translated in early 20th century covers definitions of airplane, pilot, aerial routes, and planes are described in great detail. In 1991, a book by David Hatcher Childress, ‘Vimana Aircraft of Ancient India & Atlantis’ covered the secrets of constructing aero planes that will not break, will not catch fire, and cannot be destroyed. Also secret of making planes motionless (hovering), of making them invisible (stealth), the secret of retrieving photographs of the interior of enemy planes (intelligence), the secret of ascertaining the direction of enemy planes approach (radar), the secret of making persons in enemy planes lose consciousness and the secret of destroying enemy planes.

The propulsion of the Vimanas according to Kanjilal (1985) was by "Mercury Vortex Engines", apparently a concept similar to electric propulsion. Childress also finds evidence for the mercury vortex engine in the Samarangana Sutradhara, an 11th century treatise on architecture.

Texts say “Vimanas are powered by some jet engines. This seems to be true from the description of the flight behavior. Elephants ran away in panic; grass was thrown out because there was a lot of pressure from behind those Vimanas. The Vimanika Shastra refers to metals used in these crafts. There is mention of electricity and power sources, of pilots and their flying clothing, about the food that they eat. It talks even about the weapons that are kept on these airships.The flight manuals of the Vimanas are quite similar to the flight manuals you find in the modern civil and military aircraft. It suggests that Vimanas were powered by several gyroscopes placed inside a sealed liquid mercury vortex. One of the texts talks about mercury rotating and driving some sort of a powerful propeller or fan.

There are references to flying machines in the temple carvings and in the ancient writings. Most ancient Sanskrit manuscripts have still to be translated into English. It is claimed that a few years ago, the Chinese discovered some Sanskrit documents in Lhasa, Tibet and sent them to be translated. Dr. Ruth Reyna who under took the exercise, said recently that the documents contain directions for building interstellar spaceships. The method of propulsion, she said, was anti-gravitational, a system similar to that of “laghima”, the unknown power of man’s ego, a centrifugal force strong enough to counter gravitational pull. Hindu Yogis, for long have maintained “laghima” enables a person to levitate. Dr. Reyna said that on board these machines, which were called "Astras", the ancient Indians could have sent a detachment of men onto any planet.

Linkages to Modern Avtars

Vimanas were kept in a Vimana Griha, a kind of hanger, and were sometimes said to be propelled by a yellowish-white liquid, which sounds more like gasoline. Perhaps Vimanas had a number of different propulsion sources, including combustion engines and even "pulse-jet" engines. It is interesting to note that when Alexander invaded India in 300 BC, his historians chronicled that at one point they were attacked by “fiery flying shields" that dived at his army and frightened the cavalry.

The Nazis developed the first recent pulse-jet engines for their V-8 rockets. Hitler and the Nazi staff were greatly interested in ancient India and Tibet and sent regular expeditions to both these places in the 30’s to gather evidence. Interestingly, Soviet scientists discovered old instruments used in navigating cosmic vehicles in caves in Turkestan and the Gobi Desert.

As per John Burrows, Sanskrit texts have references to gods who fought battles in the sky using Vimanas equipped with weapons as deadly as in current times. Indra’s Dart operated using a circular reflector. When switched on, it produced a ‘shaft of light’ which, when focused on any target, immediately consumed it with its power (Laser Weapons).

There are references of highly maneuverable and powerful Vimanas launching single projectiles charged with ‘all the power of the Universe’ against cities, resulting in huge columns of smoke and fire equivalent to tens of thousands of suns. This Iron Thunderbolt gigantic messenger of death reportedly reduced to ashes the entire race of the Vrishnis and Andhakas. These kinds of records are not isolated and can be cross-correlated with similar reports in other ancient civilizations. Were these nuclear weapons?

Many western researchers studying UFOs tend to overlook possible origin in ancient India. Even Indians did not take the texts very seriously, but woke up when the Chinese announced that they were studying this data for their space program. From the manuscripts it is not clear if interplanetary travel was ever made but there is a mention of a planned trip to the Moon. However, the Ramayana does have a highly detailed story of a trip to the moon in a Vimana, including details of a battle on the moon with an ‘Asvin’ (Atlantean airship).

The Samara Sutradhara is a scientific treatise dealing with every possible angle of air travel in a Vimana (Civil Aviation). There are 230 stanzas dealing with the construction, take-off, cruising for thousands of miles, normal and forced landings, and even possible bird strikes. It dealt with aircraft operations, included information on the navigation, precautions for long flights, protection of airships from storms and lightening and change over to "solar energy" for cruise.

More recently, Vimanas have appeared in books, films, internet and video games. Interstellar propulsion system called ‘Vimana Drive’ is used in the space exploration game Noctis. Producer Etnica released film 'Vimana' in 1997 includes references to UFOs and alien life forms. Michael Scott (Irish author) wrote The Secrets of the Immortal Nicholas Flamel, a fantasy series that included flying vimanas.
NASA (National Aeronautical and Space Administration) is trying to create an ion engine that uses a stream of high velocity electrified particles. Interestingly the aircraft engines being developed for future use by NASA, by some strange coincidence also use mercury bombardment units powered by solar cells.The world continues to crave for ancient Indian knowledge. Can India one day regain its lost glory and knowledge as the leader of Science and Technology?

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