Sage Agastya: Differentiation between negative & positive evidence

A reader wrote….

“With reference to the proposal of Shri. K. D. Abhyankar regarding crossing of Vindhya mountains by Sage Agastya, consider the following:-

This reader says…

“•Canopus was close to south celestial pole and not visible from anywhere in India during Ramayana times. Hence, Sage Valmiki did not mention anything about this bright star when he composed Ramayana.”

My Response…

True. Of course, this is based on timing of Ramayana, per my propsoal of ~12200 BCE.

This reader says…

“•Unlike Mahabharata, Ramayana did not undergo any revisions- even though Canopus became visible from south India from 10000 BCE onwards.”

My Response…

Translation, transliteration, transcription, interpolation and revision are trivially true facts about most of the ancient documents. We can not and should not make generalization about any of these ‘perceived and/or plausible’ errors unless we are in a position to state why we think that to be the case. And certainly invoking these errors – randomly and in a contradictory fashion, and when convenient (or when their existance becomes problematic for our conjecture) is dishonest and nonsensical.

Coming back to Ramayana, it appears that there are indeed few interpolations and additions. Example of latter would include mention of zodiac in the context of Rama Janma.

Still the reader has a point. I agree with reader. I want to leave it at that for now.

This reader says…

“•There is a reference to the star Canopus as Agastya in Vana Parva of Mahabharata. This could be around 5574-5562 BCE during exile period of Pandavas.”

My Response…

Correct.

The reader says..

“•It is, therefore, possible that the star Canopus got its name “Agastya” after Ramayana but before Mahabharata. (after 10000 BCE but before 5574 BCE).”

My Response..

This is possible.

This reader says…

“•However, such a conclusion will be falsified if the name “Agastya” for the star Canopus is found in any other text, which predates Ramayana.”

My Response…

Correct.

Of course, this assumes that we would able to date such a text and it would predate 12200 BCE, timing of Ramayana. If so, that would be indeed more conclusive corrboration in support of timing of nomenclature of Star Agastya = Star Canopus, before 14000 BCE.

In any case, readers should remember that all of this edifice (of Star Agastya= Canopus and its nomenclature) depends on an assumption which I could not trace to any specific document. Thus my point is.. if this assumption (one should read original paper of Abhyankar) is valid, then nomenclature of Agastya = Canopus could not be anytime after 14,000-17,000 BCE and more likely around 21,000 BCE.

And while thesis of our reader for the timing of nomenclature (Agastaya = Canopus) for 10,000 BCE-5574 BCE could be valid, it is valid for reasons very different than claimed by Shri. K D Abhyankar.

Advertisements

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out / Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out / Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out / Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out / Change )

Connecting to %s