The Cosmology of the Bhāgavata Purāṇa: Mysteries of the Sacred Universe
From the flat earth to the sun`s chariot traditional spiritual texts seem wedded to outmoded cosmologies that show, at best, the scientific limitations of their authors. The Bhagavata Purana, one of the classical scriptures of Hinduism, seems, at first glance, to be no exception. However, a closer examination of this text reveals unexpected depths of knowledge in ancient cosmology. This shows that the cosmology of the Bhagavata Purana is a sophisticated system, with multiple levels of meaning that encode at least four different astronomical, geographical, and spiritual world models. By viewing the text in the light of modern astronomy, Richard Thompson shows how ancient scientists expressed exact knowledge in apparently mythological terms. Comparison with the ancient traditions of Egypt and the Near East shows early cultural connections between India and these regions including a surprisingly advanced science. However, quantitative science is only part of the picture. This work also offers a clear understanding of how the spiritual dimension was integrated into ancient Indian cosmology.
Introduction to Bhagavata Cosmology, 1. Introduction to Texts, 2. The Islands and Oceans of Bhu-mandala, 3. The Solar System in Projection, 4. The Solar system in three Dimensions, 5. The Earth and Local Geography, 6. The Realm of the Demigods, 7. The Greater Universe, 8. Notes on Time and Chronology, 9. General Observations, Appendices, Bibliography, List of tables, Glossary, Index.
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A wonderful practical 21st century insight into the Vedic viewpoint of the Cosmic Creation of the Universe. It shows how vast the documented knowledge the Bhagavad Purana or Srimad Bhagavatam has of the creation, description and function of the universal creation. It may seem fantastical, but if one views this in a vedic scientific lens, one can immediately see that this is not a work of mere fiction, legend or fantasy as its details and calculations are intricately interwoven with Vedic Mathematics which has been the basis for modern mathematics.
The complex is made visible and comprehensible in this wonderful masterpiece which allows us a very practical presentation for the modern man to understand the Vedic view points of the Universal creation.