Shri Phadnis writes…
“The problem of complete darkness after sunset for several hours on 14th day of war is not amenable to easy solution.
The description leaves no doubt whatsoever in any reader’s mind that there was complete and heavy darkness for almost whole night, until, early morning, Moon rose a little before the Sun. The words in the description of moonrise, point out that it rose In The East (Direction presided over by Indra). Moon is ‘full arched’ and like Karna’s bow or a crescent in other words. It cannot, by any stretch of imagination be considered as a (nearly) full moon becoming visible after dust settled down. If it was a full moon, obscured by dust the whole night, it would, when freed from dust, reappear early morning near the western horizon and not in the east. It would also not be a crescent.
The description matches a moonrise on Krishna Chaturdashi in timing, shape and place.
I wonder why Shri. Oak is neglecting all these descriptions and insists on attributing the darkness throughout the night to just the dust obscuring a near full moon.
I would advise Shri. Oak to go to a village, and step out at midnight of a full moon, cloudless night and see for himself the amount of light thrown by the moon and then imagine it being converted to complete darkness due to ‘dust’ throughout the night.
Readers can imagine how much dust it would take.
I totally reject Shri. Oak’s dusty explanation of the 14th day dark night.
We have to look for the explanation somewhere else.”
Here we stand, Shri Phadnis and I , at the opposite end, so to speak, with our views regarding the identification of 14th day of the Mahabharata War and corresponding Lunar day (tithi) and phase of the moon.
While I claim that the day was that of the full moon (or near full moon), Shri Phadnis claims it to be that of near Amawasya ( Vadya Chaturdashi – maximum of one or two days before the day of Amawasya).
I will deal with this critical problem in multiple parts. Enthusiastic readers may do their homework by reading part of the book (Error Elimination – Experiments 56 through 63).
To be continued…