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Old December 6th, 2012, 04:37 AM   #101
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Originally Posted by okamido View Post
I would like to see evidence for the vast scientific achievement of the Indians, examples of animal and women's rights outside of one tiny corner/ subculture, and the recorded history dating back to 10,000 bce.

Thanks in advance.
frankly, what do you mean by one tiny corner ?

the thread topic is ashokan edicts and if you have cared to read some of the ashokan edicts , you would find that animal slaughter is banned there and mind you India under Mauryan empire was biggest empire at that time and also that there was a separate department for women welfare by him.

Infact, we have records of veterinary hospitals in India in 300 BC and so these evidences are pretty strong.


10,000 bc is something i can not talk about as i reject such dates.
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Old December 6th, 2012, 09:22 PM   #102
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[quote=Joshua A;1278117]I wonder seriously how much of your knowledge is based on actually reading of primary texts. Indian shipping and navigation lacked? They did not sail around the world? Are you serious?

Do you know the oldest dock was built in India in 2500BCE? [./quote]

Yes, I did. But did you know that the ancient Indians so totally forgot the Indus Valley Civilization and its achievements that we don't even know what they called their cities, and it was 4000 years before the Indians built another dry dock?

In any case, I was talking about how things stood during the 18th century CE, not 3rd millennium BC. Achievements made during the 3rd millennium BC that had been completely forgotten are not relevant to the world of today. There are no doubt alien civilizations in the galaxy millions of years old whose achievements vastly surpass our own, and what relevance do they have to our history? None whatsoever.



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For the later period we have a remarkable work, Kautilya Arthasastra, which was written during 321 to 300 BC.
There are a scholars who don't think the Arthasatra was written until 2nd century CE.

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n summary, most scholars put the composition of the 'Arthaśāstra' to between 4th century BC and 2nd century AD. The text was influential until the 12th century, when it disappeared. It was discovered in 1904 by R. Shamasastry, who published it in 1909 Arthashastra - Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia
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There are accounts in Pali literature on the size of vessels which could accommodate 700 passengers.
So what. The ancient Greeks, could boast a ship, the Syracuse, that could carry 1942 people, 2 1/2 times as many!

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The Syracusia was designed by Archimedes and built around 240 BC by Archias of Corinth on the orders of Hieron II of Syracuse. The historian Moschion of Phaselis said that Syracusia could carry a cargo of some 1,600 to 1,800 tons and a capacity of 1942 passengers.[2] It reputedly bore more than 200 soldiers, as well as a catapult.

And the ancient Chinese could boast ships that could carry as many people. 700 passengers was big, but nothing unique.


And the Manila Galleons of the 16th century were bigger yet, and the distance from Mexico to the Philippines was far greater distance, easily twice the distance, as that traveled by any Indian ship.

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This trade was so lucrative that merchants in Spain complained about lost profits. In 1593, a law was enforced that only two treasure ships were allowed to leave Manila and Acapulco. Thus, it was important to build the largest galleons possible.

The Manila Galleons turned out to be the hugest ships built up to this point in time. The average galleon was between 1,700 and 2,000 tons and carried 1,000 passengers. Shipwreck Treasure in the Philippines
Now, everyone knows that 1000 is greater than 700, especially when the ships also had to carry supplies for voyages that were easily twice the length of any Indian ship voyage.


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Therefore, you were absolutely wrong(as you were wrong on Indian education) on Indian shipping and navigation technology. Not only was it superior to the Europeans, the Europeans had their ships built by the Indians!
Saying something something does not make it so. I would like to point out nothing you have said has shown that Indians were superior in anything, or disproved a single thing I said.

1. The distances that the Indians sailed were only a fraction the distances that the Europeans sailed. The Indians never sailed around the entire world, and sailing from India to Hormuz and back again, or from India to China, is a lot, lot less than sailing from England to India, or England and China and back, as any glance at a map will show.

That you are so ignorant that you don't know that makes you totally unqualified to make comments on anything. Any one, but you, knows that a 1000 people is a lot more than 700 people, and it becomes even more impressive yet when you consider that the greater amount of supplies they also had to carry.

2. The reason British built ships in India was because it was cheaper. And the ships per built to European designs, not Indian, because European designs were superior. British ships sailed to every place Indian ships sailed to, and lot of places that Indian ships never went to - no Indian ship sailed to North and South America, to Australia, to New Zealand, to New Guinea, to etc......

European ships routinely sailed around the world for 400 years before the first Indian ship managed the same feat, and no ship based on a native design to India has yet to sail around the world.


3. As the late as the 13th century, Indians were reported uses crude fish shaped magnetic compasses, which would have been inferior to the magnetic needle compasses the Europeans were already using in the 12th century.

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Muhammad al-Awfi writes of a fish-shaped magnetic compass in 1232 and 10 years later Bailak al-Qabajagi states that mariners in the Indian Ocean used an iron leaf shaped like a fish and rubbed with a magnet to find direction. Quests of the Dragon and Bird Clan: Magnetic Compass and Navigation (Glossary)

Also, by the 14th century, Europeans were mounting their compass needles on compass roses, giving them superior ability to determine direction. Finally, the Europeans mounted their compasses on dry mounted gimbals, which could compensate for the roll and pitch of the ship, again making them superior navigation aids to the compasses the Indians were using.

4. By the 18th century, the Europeans had developed the mariner chronometer, which no Indian time keeping was even as close to matching, and gave the Europeans an unmatched ability to determine longitude and navigation.

European had some 400 years or more tradition in mechanical clock making, and before that there a tradition in water clocks going back to Greek and Roman times, a tradition which India completely lacked. India before the British came had no tradition in clock making, and made no mechanical clocks.


5. European map making skills far surpassed any Indian map making skills. No Indian map maker could even begin to approach the accuracy of the 18th century European map makers. Not only did they superior map making and charting skills, but they also had superior ability to reproduce their maps. The techniques of etching and engraving the Europeans pioneered allowed them to make their new accurate maps available to a wider audience.

Even if the Indians had had comparable map making skills, which they did not, their rejecting of printing meant the only maps available would be those that were laboriously produced by hand, which would have greatly limited their availability. (India adopted printing in the 19th century)

While we can find examples of Roman maps, do we have any examples of any Indian maps made before British colonial times? Can you show me any example of any ancient or medieval Indian map?


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Old December 6th, 2012, 10:37 PM   #103
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@ Bart Dale

show me a single responsible indian historian ( of any type be they marxists, hindu nationalists or nehruvians ) who have claimed like Joshua did .

the fact is you are taking a post of a man who is boasting of 10,000 BC as dates and then mocking india.


whether we indians like it or not , but it is fact that since last 2,000 years we were technologically least advanced out of all four regions where great civilizations flourished say mid east, europe , china , india .
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Old December 6th, 2012, 10:59 PM   #104
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Originally Posted by Joshua A View Post
Yes, there was no printing press in India, but that is because there was no need. India had an oral based education system based on the old Vedic gurukul system.
If they were just oral, then they were not literate. There are fundamental differences between oral and written works.

1. Oral traditions are not as set nor as secure. How do we know what we are hearing today is exactly the same as say 300 years ago? The answer is we don't and we can't be entirely certain. If the stories handed down were changed somewhat, to make them more relevant, it would be impossible for use to know for certain. Also, if you have a break in a single generation in an oral tradition, it is lost forever.

In contrast, we can be far more certain of written works. We have the possibility of comparing of ancient text with modern ones to see if anything changed. We do not have the possibility of listening to what reciters were actually saying 300 years ago, because we don't posses Way Back time machines like Dr. Peabody and his boy Sherman. Also, written works can be rediscovered after centuries of being lost. Like the story of Gilgamesh, which was forgotten for thousands of years before it was rediscovered in ancient writings.

If something were deliberately changed in an oral work, if would be impossible to prove.

2. With writing, you can disseminate information to a larger audience over a wider area at the same time. It was printing that helped spread Luther's 99 thesis, and ushered in the Protestant Reformation. Had Luther lived a few centuries earlier, no one would have heard of him outside his local village.


3. Writing allows communication of complex ideas between individuals over long distances, in a manner not feasible with oral tradition. For example, suppose Einstein wanted to communicate his ideas on relativity to a fellow scientist living in a distance country. All he needs to do is write a paper with his ideas, and just give it to someone to carry to that distance country. All the messenger needs to to is the simple task of carry the paper with his ideas.

In an oral society, Einstein would first have to explain his ideas to the messenger. Unless the messenger was as bright as Einstein, he wouldn't understand this complex theory of relativity, and he couldn't effectively carry the message. In order to effectively communicate with his fellow scientist, he would have to travel directly to the distant country himself, which would be an inefficient use of his time.

You might say you get the messenger to memorize the Einsteins message without understanding, something like a human Xerox machine. Yes, people can sometimes memorize long poems and works, but they have to do by repeated practice. Very, very few people can memorize long complicated works by just hearing it once, even back then. Also, long works like the Vedda and Homer's epics have certain features in them to aid memorization - that is why all these long oral works are poetry, not in prose. Prose, such as Einsteins complex theories would be, is much harder for the human mind to memorize. And it would still take longer for Einstein to repeatedly have to tell his message for the messenger to memorize the message, than to send a written letter.)

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Most of the texts were very short and economical written on palm leaves, which were committed to memory. Hence the preference for the sutra-style of literature. As necessity is the mother of invention, the Indians really had no need to print books, as they were doing just fine with memory and it also kept their memories sharp.
The are fundamental limitations in the oral system you proposed, which is why most societies switched over to writing.

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No doubt, indigenous education decayed and illiteracy increased during the British period. According to Sir Henry Lawrence, there was one school for every 1783 inhabitants of the most backward division of the Punjab at the time of annexation. But thirty years later in 1881, "there is one school of whatever sort, to every 9,028 inhabitants", according the President of the Educational Commission.

Please give the actual document for where you got the alleged claim of Sir Henry Lawrence from.

Also, notice in all your discussion of "schools", you didn't mention reading and writing. Were the students learning to read and write in these schools you refer to, and if so, what language, Sanskrit, or the vernacular? Do you know what the estimated literacy rate was before the British?

Note, I never said anything about education, I talked about illiteracy. If a person can't read the written word, that person is illiterate, no matter how many classics he may know orally, and no matter how educated you think he is.

Last edited by Bart Dale; December 6th, 2012 at 11:46 PM.
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Old December 6th, 2012, 11:45 PM   #105
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Originally Posted by avantivarman View Post
@ Bart Dale

show me a single responsible indian historian ( of any type be they marxists, hindu nationalists or nehruvians ) who have claimed like Joshua did

the fact is you are taking a post of a man who is boasting of 10,000 BC as dates and then mocking india.
I apologize for that, your are right, and I was wrong to be mocking India. I am sorry for that.

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whether we indians like it or not , but it is fact that since last 2,000 years we were technologically least advanced out of all four regions where great civilizations flourished say mid east, europe , china , india .
But India was clearly ahead of Europe in the first half of the middle ages, and and there were some fields that India had a lead (making crucible steel) up until the Industrial Revolution.

And in some cases, like its slow adoption of printing, that may be due to the flowing nature of Indian writing script. The letterpress printing I suspect is poorly suited for printing with type face. Printing in India started becoming common once lithography, which could more easily reproduce the cursive Indian writing, became available.
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Old December 6th, 2012, 11:50 PM   #106
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A question occurred to me with regard to the Asoka inscriptions. Is why were they placed where they are? Are they near any junction of an ancient roadway, or by perhaps ancient buildings that no longer exist?

In some cases, like the Minor Edict commemorating the birthplace of Buddha, it is obvious why for its location. But what about some of the others? Like the Asoka inscription that started this thread, it seems out in the middle of nowhere, at least today. Was there a village, or town around it that no longer existed? I assumed that whoever wrote them wanted them to be read.

Last edited by Bart Dale; December 7th, 2012 at 12:04 AM.
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Old December 7th, 2012, 12:39 AM   #107
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Originally Posted by Bart Dale View Post
A question occurred to me with regard to the Asoka inscriptions. Is why were they placed where they are? Are they near any junction of an ancient roadway, or by perhaps ancient buildings that no longer exist?

In some cases, like the Minor Edict commemorating the birthplace of Buddha, it is obvious why for its location. But what about some of the others? Like the Asoka inscription that started this thread, it seems out in the middle of nowhere, at least today. Was there a village, or town around it that no longer existed? I assumed that whoever wrote them wanted them to be read.
yes the ashokan edict at kalsi in uttarakhand was located on a mid way between uttarapatha and calcutta region .


similarly, ashokan edicts at karnataka are at places which show some advanced signs like NBPW and coins like brahmagiri.


the fact is apart from madurai in tamil nadu, my city and ujjain , there are no cities that have been continously inhabited for last 2300 years in India so this explains lack of any monument in areas where ashoka issued hios edicts which once were flourishing cities.
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Old December 7th, 2012, 04:01 AM   #108
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Bart, any impartial readers can clearly see you have been proven wrong. I have provided you significant evidence. There is nothing more I have to say on the matter - you can bring a horse to water, but you can't make it drink.
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Old December 7th, 2012, 04:50 AM   #109
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Originally Posted by Joshua A View Post
Bart, any impartial readers can clearly see you have been proven wrong. I have provided you significant evidence. There is nothing more I have to say on the matter - you can bring a horse to water, but you can't make it drink.
look guy the website you are using as evidence is well known to me and i have visited that too often.

so i know a lot about such things and i believed them to be true but they are not .

this is sad but true.
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Old December 7th, 2012, 05:00 AM   #110
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Thank you "guy" I have done my work here, if the evidence I have presented is faulty, then point it out - mere opinions like "Look guy, I use to believe this, but its wrong" I will ignore. In fact I will ignore you if you refer to me as "guy" again. Your literacy leaves much to be desired.
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