THE LINK BETWEEN SOUTHEAST ASIA AND SOUTH INDIA Indian historians have conducted a heated debate for many decades about the relative marits of different regions with regard to the spread of Indian influenced in southeast Asia. Now a days there seems to be a consensus that, at least as far as the early centuries AD are concerned, South India and specially Tamil Nadudeserves the gerates credit for this achievement. In subsequent periods, however, several regional shifts as well as parallel influences emanaging from various centers 94
can be noticed. The influence of Tamil Nadu was very strong as far as the earliest inscriptions in Southeast Asia are concerned, showing as they do the influence ofteh script prevalent in the Pallava kingdom. The oldest Buddhist sculputure in Southeast Asia- the famous Buddha of Celebes – shows the marks of the Buddhist sculptures of Amarvati (Coastal Andhra) of the third to the fifth centuries AD. Early Hindu sculptures of Western Java and of the Isthmus of Siam seem to have been guided by the Pallava style of the seventh and eighth centuries AD. Early southeast Asian temple architecture similarly shows the influence of the Pallavas and Chola styles, especially on Java and in Kampuchea. The influence of the North Indian Gupta style also made itself felt from the fifth century AD onwards. The center of this school was Sarnath, near Baranasi (Banaras), where Buddha preached his first sermon. Sarnath produced the classical Buddha image which influenced the art of Burma and Thailand, as well as that of Funan at the mouth of the Mekong. The art of the Shailendra dynastry of Java in the eighth and ninth centuries AD – of which the Borobudur is the most famous monument – was obviously influenced by what is termed the Late Gupta style of western central Java of about (c.800 AD) explicitly refers to the canstant flow of the people from Gurjardesha (Gujarat and adjacent regions) due to which this temple had been built. Indeed, the temple’s sculptures show a striking similarity with those of the late Buddhist caves of Ajanta and Ellora. In later centuries Southeast Asia was more and more influenced by the scholars of the University of Nalanda and the style of the Pala dynasty, the last of the great Indian dynasties which bestowed royal patronage on Buddhism. The influence of Mahayana Buddhism prevailing in Bihar and Bengal under the Palas was so strong at the court of the Shailendras of Java that a Buddhist monk from ‘Gaudi’ (Bengal) with the typical Bengali name of Kumara Ghose, became rajguru of the Shailendra king and in this capacity consecrated a statue of Manjushri in the royal temple of the Shailenras in 782 AD. Bengal eastern Bihar and Orissa were at that time centers of cultural influence. These regions were in constant contact with Southeast Asia, whose painters and sculptors reflected the style of Eastern Indian in their works. Typical of this aesthetic was the special arrangement of figures surrounding the central figure. This types of arrangement can be found both in Indonasia sculptures and in the temple paintanings of Pagan (Burma) during this period. In the same era south Indian influence emerged once more under the chola dynasty. Maritime trade was of major importance to the choals, who thereby also increased their cultural influences. The occasional military interventions of the Cholas did not detract from the peaceful cultural intercourse. At the northern coast of Sumatra the old port of Dilli, near Medan, had great Buddha sculptures evincing a local variation of the Chola style, indeed a magnificent status of the Hindu God Ganesha, in the
pure Chola style, have recently been found at the same place, Close to the famous temple of Padang Lawas, central Sumatra, small but very impressive chola-style bronze sculptures of a four armed Lokanath and of Tara have been found. These sculptures are now in the museum of Jakarta. They are dated at 1039 AD, and a brief inscription containing Old Malay words in addition to Sanskrit words- but Tamil words-proves that the figures were not imported from India but were produced locally. Nevertheless, Chola relations with southeast Asia were by no means a one-way street. It is presumed that the imperial cult of the Choals, centred on their enormous 95
temples, was directly influenced by the grantd style of Angkor. The great tank at Gangaikondacholapuram was perhaps conceived by the Chola ruerl in the same spirit as that which moved the Combodian rulers who ordered the construction of the famous Barays (tanks) of Angkor, which are considered to be a special Indication of royal merit. In the late thirteenth century Ad Pagan (Burma) was once more exposed to a strong current of difect Indian influence emanating from Bengal at that time conquered by Islamic rulers Nalanda had been destroyed by the end of the twelth century and large groups of monks in search of a new hoem flocked to Pagan and also to the Buddhist centers of Tibet. The beautiful paintings in the temples of Minnanthu in the eastern part of the city of Pagan may have due to them. Islamic conquest cut off the holy places of Buddhism. A millennium of intensive contacts between India and southeast Asia have come to an end. But there was anther factor which must be mentioned in this contact. In 1190 AD Chapata, a Buddhist monk from Pagan, returned to that city after having spent ten years in Sri Lanka. In Burma he founded a branch of the Theravada school of Buddhism, established on the strict rules of the mahavihara monastery of the Sri Lanka. This led to a schism in the Burmese Buddhist order which had been established at Pagan by Shin Arahan about 150 years earlier. Shin Arahan was a follower of the South Indian school of Buddhism, which had its center at Kanchipuram. Chapata’s reform prevailed and by the thirteenth and fourteenth centuries AD. Burma, Thailand and Combodia had adopted Theravada Buddhism of the Sri Lanka school. In Combodia this shift from Mahayana to Theravada Buddhism seesm to have been part of a socio-cultural revolution. Under the last great Knig of Angkor, Jayavarman VII (1181- 1218) royan Mahayana Buddhism had become associated in the eyes of the people with the enormous buden which the king imposed upon them in order to build the enormous Buddhist temples of Angkor Thom (e.g. the gigantic Beyon). Even in Indonesia, however, where Tantrist Buddhism with an ad-mixture of Shaivism prevailed at the courts of rulers all the way from Sumatra down to Bali, direct Indian influence rapidly receded in the thirteenth century. This was only partly due to the intervantion of Islam in India, its other cause being an upsurge of Javanese art which confined the influence of Indian art to the statues of defied. Kings erected after the death of the ruler. The outer walls of the temples were covered with Javanese reliefs which evince a great similarity to the Javanese shadowplay (Wayang kulit). The chandi Jago (thirteenth century AD) and the temples of Panantaran (fourthenth century AD) show this new Jvanese style very well. It has remained the dominant style of Bali art upto the present time. A similar trend towards the assertion of indigenous styles can also be found in the Theravads Buddhist
countries. The content of the scence depicted is still derived from Hindnu mythology of Buddhist legends but the presentation clearly incorporates the respective national style. INDIAN IMPACT ON ANCIENT SOUTH-EAST ASIA By the opening of the Christian are the civilization of India and begun to spread across the Bay of Bengal into both island and mainland south-east Asia, and by the fifth century A.D. Indianised states, that is to say states organized along the traditional lines of Indian political theory and following the Buddhists or Hindu religions, had established themselves in many regions of Burma, Thialand, Indo- China, Malaysia, and Indonesia. Some of these states were in time to grow into 96
great empires dominating the zone between metropolitan India and the Chiense southern border, which has sometimes been dscribed as “Further India’ or “Greater India”, once rooted in South-East Again soil, Indian civilization evolved in part through the action of forces of South-East Asian origin, and in part through the influence of cultural and political changes in the Indian Subcontinent civilization in terms of a series of ‘waves’ and there are good reasons for considering that such “waves” are still breaking in south East Asian beaches today. The cultures of modern-East Asia all provide evidence of a long period of contact with India. – Manyu South-East Asian languages (Maley and Javanese are good examples) contain an important proportion of words of Sanskrit of Dravidian origin. Some of these languages, like Thai, are still written in scripts which are clearly derived from Indian models. – South East Asian concepts of kingship and authority, even in regions which are now dominated by Islam, owe much to ancient Hindu political theory. The Thai monarchy, though following Hinayana Buddhism of the Sinhalese type, still requires the presence of Gour Brahmans (who by now have become Thai in all but name) for the proper performance of its ceremonials. – The traditional dance and shadow-puppet theatres in many South-East Asian regions, in Thailand, Malaya, and Java for example, contniue to fascinate their audiences with the adventures of Rama and Sita and Hanuman. – It is difficult to determine the precise Indian influence on the great South-East Asian monuments as the Borobodur stupa in Java and the Khmer temples of Combodia. Theser structures are obviously in the Indian tradition. Their ground-plans, for example, and the subject matter of their sculptural decoration, can easily be related to Indian religious texts. ” Yet a careful study of monuments such as these suggests that the Indian aspects is only one part of the story. While beyond doubt showing sings of Indian influence yet Borobodur and Angkor Wat are not copies of Indian structures. There exists nothing quite like them in the Indian archaeological record. The vast majority of the Hindu and Buddhist monuments of south east Asia which were constructed in the pre-European period, that is to say before the opening of the sixteenth century, possess, as it were, a definite South-East Asian flavour. It is reasonable to consider the styles of art and architecture of the Khemrs, Chams, and Javanese as styles in their own right and something much more than the imitation of Indian prototypes. These styles, as coedes and other scholars have expressed, It, are Indiansed rather than Indian. The Indian inheritance in South-East Asia is not to be found in the
unthinking repetition of Indian forms, rather, it is to be seen in the inspiration which Indian gave to south East Asia to adopt its own cultures so as to absorb and develop Indian concepts. The resulting syntheses are peculiar to south-east Asia. The images of Buddha and Vishnu, lingas and other Hindu cult objects of the early period are far more ‘Indian’ and far less characteristic of any regional culture. Almost ubiquitos in south-east Asia, for example is a category of Buddha image showing very clear signs of Gupta or Amravati influence, and some examples of this can, on the established principles of India iconography, be dated to very early in the Christian era. Specimens have been found in Indo-China, Thailand, Burma, Malayisa, Indonesia, and the Philippines. 97
In time of process of regional evolution, the interaction of Indna and indigenous ideas began to produce a number of distinctive styles of Indianised south-east Asian art and architecture. The man art of Burma and of the socalled kingdom of Dvaravati in what is now Thailand, while retaining much that might be called Gupta, and by the sixth century A.D. begun to show a number of distinctive features of its own, some of them easy to detect by eye but very hard to define verbally. Perhaps the most obvious representation of the human face, which comes to show Physcial features characteristics of a non-Indian ethnic group. The Khemrs, Chams, and Javanese had all likewise by the end of the eights century evolved styles so individual as to have become something much more than a refletion of one or more Indian prototypes. There is much evidence to suggest that Indian ideas, as well as Indian art, were modified in ‘Further Indian’ through the influence of indigenous cultures. The cult of the Devaraja, the God King, though certainly expressed in Indian terminology, developed, so many scholars believe, into a distinctive corpus the political and consmological ideas which behind the proliferation of Khmer temples built in the form of of mystic mountains and the Javanese chandis which were not only places of worship but also royal tombs and mechanisms, as it were, designed to line the dynasty on earth with the spirit world. No more extreme examples of this cult with its identification on furler with God, be it Siva, Vishnu or Buddha, can be found than in Angkor Thom, the city of the late twelth and ear thirteenth century Khmer ruler Jayavarma VII. Here, on the gateway towers of the city, and on its central monuments, the Bayon, the face of theking himself becomes the dominant architecture motif. From all four sides of every tower of the Bayon, Jayavarman VII looks out over his capital, his lips and eyes suggesting an enigmatic and slightly malevolent smile. This is something which the Roman emperors, who defined themselves in their onw lifetimes, would have understood, but which would have been beyond the comprehension of the great Hindu and Buddhist dynasties of India. The Devaraja cult of the Khemrs, Chams, and Javanese Indianlised kings has survived to the present day in Thailand, where it explains many features of the modern Thai monarchy. The individually of the major art styles of Indianised sout-east Asia is, as we have already noted, to a great extent the result of interaction between Indian and preIndian indigenous south-east Asian concepts and traditions. The south -East Asian component in this cultural equatioin, however, is far more difficult to define than the Indian. GENERAL PREVIEW OF SCIENCE & TECHNOLOGY AND LEARNING &
EDUCATION SCINECE & TECHNOLOGY Knowledge of science and technology, however, got linked with religionand social relations. Relying primarily on pragmatism some intellectuals in India acquired intuitive awarness of scientific temper. In view of absence of experiment, some insights became ridiculous. Knowledge of science was known from very ancient times, although science, as we know today, was not known in India till modern times. The archaeological remains of the Indus Valley reveal knowledge of applied sciences. Scientific techniques were 98
used in irrigation, Metallurgy, making of fired bricks and pottery, and simple recknowing and measurement of areas and volumes. It contrast more is know about Aryan achievements in the field of astronomy, mathamatcis and medicine. Chinese records indicate knowledge of a dozen books of Indian origin. Brahmagupta’s Sidhanta as well as Charaka’s and Susrata’s Samhitas were translated int Arabic in the 9th or 10th centuries A.D. In ancient Indian mathematics was known by the general name of ganita, which included arthimatcs, geometry, algebra, astronomy and astrology. It was Aryabhata, who gave a new direction to trigonometry. The decimal system too was an innovation of India. By the third century B.C. mathematics, astronomy and medicine began to develop separately. In the fielf of mathematics ancient Indians made three distinct contributions, the notation system, the decimal system and the use of zero. The earliest epigraphic evidence of the use of decimal system belongs to the fifth century A.D. Before these numerals appeared in the West they had been used in India for centuries. They are found in the inscriptions of Ashoka in the third century B.C. Indians were the first to use the decimal system. The famous mathematics Aryabhata. (A.D. 476-500) was acquinated with it. The Chinese learnt this system from the Buddhist missionaries, and the western world borrowed it from the Arabas when they came incontact with India. Zero was discovered by Indians inabout the second century B.C. From the very beginning Indian mathematicians considered zero as a separate numeral, and it was used in this sense in arithmatics. In Arabia the earliest use of zero appears in A.D. 873. The Arabs learnt and adopted it from India and spread it in Europe. So far as Algebra is concerned both Indians and Greeks contributed to it, but in Western Europe its knowledge was borrowed not from Greece but from the Arabs who had acquired it from India. In the second century B.C. Apastemba contributed to practical geometry for the construction of altars on which the kings could offer sacrifices. It describes acute angle, obtuse angle, right angle etc. Aryabhata formulated the rule for finding the area of a trinangle, which led to the origin of trigonometry. The most famous work of his time is the Suryasiddanta the like of which was not found in Contemporary ancient east. During the Gupta period mathematics was developed to such an extent and more advanced than any other nation of antiquity. Quite early India devised a rudimentary algebra which led to more calculations than were possible for the Greeks and led to the study of number for its own sake. The earliest inscription regarding the data by a system of nine digits and a zero is dated as 595 A.D. Evidently the system was known tomathematicians some centuries before it was employed in inscriptions.
Indian mathematicians such as Brahmagupta (7th century), Mahavira (9th century) and Bhaskara (12th century) made several discoveries which were known to Europe only after Renaissance. The understood the importance of positive and negative quantities, evolved sound system of estracting squares and cube roots and could solve quadratic and certaint types of indeterminate equations. Aryabhata gave approximate value of pie. It was more accurate than that of the Greeks. Also some strides were made in trigonometry, ephrical geometry and calculus. Chiefly in astronomy the mathematical implications of zero and infnity were fully realized unlike anywhere in the world. 99
Amont the various branches of mathematics, Hindus gave astronomy the highest place of honour. Suryasidhanta is the best know book on Hindu astronomy. The text was later modeified two or three times between 500 A.D. and 1500 A.D. The system laid down in the book can even now be used to predict eclipse within an error of two or three hours. The most renowed scholars of astronomy were Aryabhata and Varhamihira. Aryabhata belonged to the fifth century, and Varahamihira to the sixth. Aryabhata calculated the position of the planets according to the Babylonian method. He discovered the cause of lunar and solar eclipses. The circumstances of the earth which he measured on the basis of the speculation is considered to be correct even now. He pointed out that the sun is stationary and the earth rotates around it. The book of Aryabhata is the Aryabhatiya. Varhimihira’s well-known work is called Brihatsamhita which belongs to the sixth century A.D. Varhaihira stated that the moon rotates around the earth and the earth rotates around the earth rotates around the sun. He utilized several Greek works to explain the movement of the plantes and some other astronomical problems. Although Greek knowledge influenced Indian astronomy, there is no doubt that Indian pursued the subject further and made use of it in their ovservations of the planets. Aryabhata wrote a book when he was barely 23 years. Varhmihira of the sixth century wrote a summary of five asronomical books current wrote a summary of five astronomical books current in his time. Brahamagupta of the seventh century A.D. appreciated the value of observation and astronomy and his book was translated into Arabic. One last great scientist was Bhaskara II. One of the chapters in the book Sidhanta Shiromani, dealing with mathematics, is the well-known work of Lilavait. Nevertheless, Indian viws on the origina and evolution of the universe was matter of religion rather than of science. The cosmic schemes of Hindus and Jains in fundamentals were the same. All postulated a flat earth although Indian astronomers came to know that this was incorrect early in the Christian era. The idea of flat such remained for religious pruposes. Regarding astronomy proper it was studied as a Vedanta. Its name was Jyotisa. A rimitive kind of astronomy was developed mainly for the purpose of settling the dates and times at which periodical sacrifices were to be performed. Serverall Greek words gained momentum in sankrit through knowledge of Greek astronomy. The sixth century astronomer Varahamihira called one of his five astronomical systems as Romaka Sidhanta. It is only western astronomy that introduced in Indian the sign of the Zodaic. The seven-day week, the hour, and several other ideas. Later, Indian astronomers made some advances on the knowledge of the Greeks and passed on their knowledge with that of mathematics via the Arabs to Europe. As early as
seventh century, a Syrian astronomer knew of the greatness of Indian astronomy and mathematics. In the field of medicine, Aurveda was the contribution of India. Seven hundred hymns in the Vedas, particularly Atharva Veda, refer to topics of Ayurveda. Indeed, the whole approach was not scientific. He earliest mention of medicines is in the Atharva Veda. As in order ancient societies, the remedies recommended in it the are replete with magical charms and spells. Medicine could not develop along scientific lines. In post-Maurya time India witnessed two famous scholars of the Aurveda, Susrtua and Charaka. In the Susrutasmhita Susruta describes methods of operating contract, stone disease and several other ailments. He mentions as many 100
as 121 implements to be used for operations. For the treatment of disease he lays special emphasis on diet. And cleanliness. Charaka wrote the Charakasamhita in the second century A.D. It is like encylopedia of Indian medicines. It describes various types of fever. Leprosy, hysteria and tuberculosis. Possibly Charaka did not know that some of these are infections. His book contains the names of a large number of plants and herbs which were to be used as medicine. The book is thus useful not only for study of ancient Indian medicine but also for ancient Indian flora and chemistry. In subsequent centuries Indian medincines developed on the lines laid down by Charaka. The Vedic hymns attribute various diseases to demons and spirits and the remedies for hymns prescribing correctly the symptoms of pulmonary tuberculosis, and connecting dropsy with heart diseases. However, national medicine began to 800 B.C. Medicine became a regular subject of study at centers like Taxila and Varanasi. The latter specialized in surgery. Susrutasmhita was compiled in the fourth century A.D. Charaka compiled the teachings of two of his predecssors who served at Taxila. Charaka and Susruta’s Samhits reached as far as Manhcuria through translations in Tibetan and other Asian languages. In the eighth century A.D. these books influenced European medicine as carried over by two Arabs. Charaka Samhita was published as late as 1550 in Arabic. Despite these achievements, medicine did not make any remarkable strides, for absence of dissection led to ignorance of anatomy and physiology. Indians were equally ……………….. of the functions of internal organs such as lungs and brain. Surgery of some kind was even during the Vedic period. It was only from the time of Susruta that surgery came to occupy an important place in medicine. Surgical operations were performed like taking the foetus out of the womb. Including caesarin, section, treatment of fistula removal of stone from bloder and plastic surgery for the nose. Despite the developments as the above in medicine, ancient Indian doctors, ingeneral had no knowledge of the functions of brain, although they knew the importance of the spinal cord and the existence of nervous system. Once again social taboos stood in the way of the growth of medical knowledge. It was a tabo to too touch dead bodies. Despite the fact that the physicological knowledge of ancient Indians was very poor, Indians evolved empirical surgery. They knew bone-setting, plastic surgery and surgeons in ancient India were experts is repairing noses, ears and lips lost, or injured by mutilation. The physician was a respectable member of society as the Vaidyas were ranked
higher in the hierarchy. Even to this day the rules of professional behaviour laid down in medical tests are almost the same as those of Hippocrates. Of course, some statements at one place states that the Physcians should not betray the patients and shouldbe always of pleasant speech. In this context, he pleads that every day they must pray on rising and going to bed, since the work of the welfare of the all beings specially cows. Regarding physics, it was closely linked with religion and theology and it even differed from sect to sect. Almost all religions believed that the universe consisted of elements like earth, air, water, and akasa (ether). Most schools maintained that there were as many types of atoms as there were elements. Some Buddhists 101
conceived atom as the minutes object capable of occupying space but also as occupying the minutest possible duration of time coming into being and vanishing almost in an instant only to be succeeded by another atom caused by the first. This somewhat resembles the quantum theory of planck. The Vaisesika school believed a single atom to be a point in space completely without magnitude. Fruther, most of the schools believed that atoms constitute moleculues. However, the Indian atomic theories were not based on experiment but intuitive logic. The great theolgian Sankara strongly argued against their existence. Beyond this knowledge of atoms, physics in India did not develop much. However, in the science of acustics, India made real discovers. Based on experience for this correct recitation on Vedas, the human era was highly trained for the phonetic study – distinguished musical tones far closer than those of other ancient musical systems much earlier than other civilization. Regarding chemistry and metallurgy too, some progress was made in ancient times. The Harappans developed metallurgy of copper and bronze about 2500 B.C. The Vedic Aryans tanned leather, fermented grains and fruits, and dyed scale production of copper, iron and steel, brass, silver and gold and their alloys. Indian steel was highly esteemed in the ancient world and it was exported in large quantities. Tin and mercury were imported and worked. And from the senventh century, alchemy was referred to in literature. The medical chemistry of ancient India did succeed in producing many important alkalies, acids and metallic salts. It is claimed by Bashama that ancient Indians ever discovered a form of gun powder. The coming of middle ages, Indian chemists, like their counterparts in the rest of the world, became increasingly interested in a specific remedy for all diseases, the source of perpetual youth, and even the surest means to salvation. Although the could not make precious metals, they could understand the chemistry of metallic sats. The heights attained by Indians in metallurgy and engineering are brone out by the almost pure copper stature of Buddha found at Sultanganj and the famous iorn Pillar at Mehrauli (Delhi which has been able to withstand rain and weather for centuries without rusting). LEARNING AND EDUCATION The highly esteemed Vedas have come to down to us. They existed for nearly 2000 years before they were known in India. It was the knowledge of acustics that enabled ancient Indians to orally transmit the Vedas from generation to generation. Institutional form of imparting learning came into existence in the early centuries of the Christian era. The approach to learning was to study logic and epistemology. The study of logci was followed by Hindus, Buddhists and Jains, one of the most
important topics of Indian thoughts was pramana or means of reliable knowledge. The nyaya schools upheld four pramanas – perceptions of areliable by anology or comparison, word (Sabda), and pronounciation of a reliable authority such as the Vedas. The Vedanta school added one more to it i.e. intution. It is probably while studying the process of inference that the schools of true logic arose. Ancient Indian postulated syllogism though not as accurate as that of Aristotle. Yet, they recognize some of the major fallacies of logic like reduction and absurdom, circular argument, infinite regression, dilemma, and ignoratio elenchi. In the field epistemology, Jains contriubuted the most for the Jains there was not only two possibilities of existence and non-existence but seven more. Although the 102
modern logicians might laugh at this pedantic system of ontological and epistemological reality they concede that the world is more complex and subtle than we think it to be. Regarding institutional form of education the first was the guru-sishya system. According to sacred texts, the training of the Brahmin pupil took place at the home of a Brahmin teacher. In some texts the guru is depicted as the poor ascetic and it is the duty of the student to beg for his teacher. The first lesson that was taught to the student was the performance of sandhya and also reciting of gayatri. The family functioned as a domestic school, an asrama or a hermitage where the mental faculties of the pupils were developed by the teacher’s constant attention and personal instruction. Education, treatant as a matter of individual concern, did not admit of the method of mass production applicable in industry. The making of man was fegarded as an artistic and not a mechanical process. Indeed, the aim of education was the developing of the pupil’s personality, his innate and latent capacities. This view of education as a process of one’s inner growth and selffulfilment evolved its own technique, its rules, methods and practices. The thinking principle, manana sakti was reckoned higher than the subject of thinking. So the primary subject of education was the mind itself. According to the ancient Indian theory of education, the training of the mind and the process of thinking, are essential for the acquisition of knowledge. The chase counts more than the game. So the pupil had mainly to educed himself and achieve his own mental growth. Education ws reduced to the three simple processes of Sravana, Manana and Niddhyaasana. Sravana was listening to the truths as they fell from the lips of the teacher. Knowledge was technically called sruti or what was heard by the ear and not what was seen in writing. The second process of knowledge called Manana implies that the pupil has to think out for himself the meaning of the leassons imparted to him orally by his teacher so that they may be assimilate fully. The third step known as Nidhyasana means complete comprehension by the pupil of the truth that is taught so that he may live the truth and not merely explain it by word. Knowledge must cultimate in realization. The admission was made bythe formal ceremony upanayana or initiation by which the pupil left the home of his natural parents for that of the preceptor. In this new home he had a second birth and was called Dvijya. Twice-born. Besides these regular schools of instructions, there were special institutions for the promotion of advance study and research. These are called in the Rig Veda as Brahmana-Sangha, Academies of learned most its discussions hammered into shape the very languageofthe country, the refined language of Sanksrit (Samkrata)
as the Vehicle of highest thought. These Academics were called prisads, there is a reference to the Pancala parisad in the Upnishads, in whose proceedings even kings participated, learning was also prompted by discussions at public meetings which were a regular of rural life, and were addressed by wandering scholars known as Carakas, These scholars toured the country to deliver public discourses and invite discussion. What might count as earliest literary congress of the world was the congress of philoshophers which was codification of Brahmanical philoshophy by discussing the subject under the direction of the master philosopher, Yajnavalkya. In these deliberations at the highest level, a lady- philoshopher named Gargi was a 103
prominent participant beside men like Uddalaka Arni. Obviously, in those days women were admitted to the highest knowledge and did not suffer from any education disabilities. There was equality between the sexes in the filed of knowledge. The Rig Veda mentions women Rais called Brahmanavadinis. To begin with, in ancient India, the main subject was the Veda. The teacher would instruct handful of students seated on ground. For many hours daily they would repeat verses after verses of the Vedas till they attainmastery of at least one of them. To ensure correctness of memory, the hymns were taught inmore than one way. Soon the curricula was expanded. The limbs of the Veda or the six Vedangas were taught – the performance of sacrifice, correct pronounciation, knowledge of prosody, etymology, grammer, and jyotisha or the science of calender. Also in the post-Vedic era, teachers often instructed their students in the six schools of Philoshophy. The writers of smititis maintain that young women of upper class updrewent this kind of training. This is a dboutful contention. Princes and other leading Kshatriyas were tained in all the manifold sciences to make them fit for government. Most boys of the lower orders learnt their trades from their fathers. Some cities became renewned because of their teachers. Chief among them were – Varanasi, Taxila from the day of Buddha and Kanchi in the beginning of the Christian era. Varanasi was famous for its religious teachers. Taxila was known for its secular studies. Among the famous men connected with Taxila were Panini, the grammarian of the fifth or fourth century B.C. : Kautilya, the Brahmin minister of Chandragupta Maurya and Charaka one of the two leading authorities of Indian medical sciences. The institutions imparting vedic knowledge that exists even today. There were also universities like Taxila and Ujjain for medicine and learning incuding mathematics and astronomy respectively. In the south Kanchi became an important center of learning. Hiuen remarks that vallabhi was as great as Nalanda and Vikramashila. Although the smirits maintained that a small number of students study under a single teacher, university turned towns came into existence like Varanasi, Taxila etc. At Varanasi there were 500 students and a number of teachers. The whole estalisment was maintained by charitable people Ideally, the teacher asked no fee, but the students repaid his debt by their service to the teacher. A Jataka story tells of how a teacher of Taxila treated well the students who paid him money while keeping other waiting. It is also interesting to note that in Taxila even married people were admitted as students. Out of all the Universities, Nalanda and imposed structures. Eight Colleges were built by different patterns including one by the king of Sri Vijaya (Sumatra). One of
the colleges was four storeyed high as stated by Hiuen-Tsang. Every facility existed for studying various kinds of subjects in the University. There were three great libraries as per Tibetan records. Nalanda attracted students not only from different parts of India but also from Tibet and China. The standards of examination were stiff, and only those who could pass the test prescribed by the dvarapandita or the scholar at the gate were admitted to this university. Also, for being admitted to the university, candidates were required to be familiar with old and new books. Nalanda was one of the earliest examples ofa residential cum-teaching institutions which housed thousands of monks devoted to learning, philoshophy and meditation. 104
Over 10,000 students including teachers lived and studied at the university. The came from various parts of the world apart from India-Cental Asia, China and Korea. Though Nalanda was primarily a Buddhist university its curricula included Hindu scriptures, Philoshophy and medicine as recorded by Hiuen-Tsang. Logic and exagetics wre pre-emenent because thes students were expected to enter into dialogue with visiting doctors of all schools. This compulsion of public debate made both teachers and students become familiar with all systems of thought in accurate summary. The university had also succession of brilliant teachers. Dharmapala was a Tamil noble from Kanchi in the south. Janamitra come from another country. Silabhadra, the saintly guru of Hiuen-Tsang, came from Assam and he was a converted Brahmin. A great achievements of the University was that it was able to continuously rejuvenate Buddhism in far off countries. Tibetan records mention a succession of learned monks who visited their country. It is also said that Sudhakara Simha went to China and worked there on the translation of Buddhist texts. NOTE ON PLACES AND AREAS IN ANCIENT INDIA 1. AIHOLE near Badami with rock cut and structural temples of Western Chalukya period, is favous for the temples of Vishnu, Ladkhan and Durga. It furnish examples of a well developed Deccan style of architecture. The other three styles of ancient India being Nagar Dravidian and Vesara. It is also famous for its inscription or Prasasti composed by Ravikirti, the court poet of Pulkesin II. This prasasti mentions the defeat of Harsha by the Chalukya king, Pulkesin II, a r rare event of a Northern emperor or ruler being defeated by a ruler south of Narmada. 2. ACHICHHATRA identified with modern Ramnagar in Bareily district of U.P. was the capital of North Panchala in the first half of first millennium B.C. Exacavation grove that it had moats and ramparts around it, it has revealed terracottas of the Kushan period, and also remarkable siries of coins of second century A.D. Its importance lies in the fact that it was on the important ancient Indian northern trade route linking Taxila and Inidraprastha with Kanyakubaj and Sravasti, Rajgriha and Pataliputra indicating that trae could be one of the reasons for its prominence. 3. AJANTA near Aurangabad (Maharashtra), is famous for wonderful Buddist caves, and also paintings probably executed only b the Buddhist monks. Paintings of exceptional skill belong to the period between 2nd century B.C. and 7th Century A.D. One of the cave well depicts the reception of a Persian mission in the Chalukya court of Pulkasin II indicating cultural and commercial contacts with the Persian empire. 4. ANUPA in Narmada valley mentioned in the Nasik inscription (dated 115 A.D.) of
Gautami Balasri, mother of the Satvahana ruler Sri Satakarni (Circa 72-95 A.D.) was conqured bythe latter from the sakas, and was a bone of contention for long between the Sakas and the Satvahanas. The sakas were responsible for driving the Satavahanas. Into the south -eastern and western direction. In other words, Anupa signifies the earlier homeland of the Satvahanas. 5. APARNTAKA (Aparanta), identified withk Konkan, i.e. North western region of the Deccan, was a bone of contention between the sakas and the Satavahanas and is mentioned in Nasik Inscription (dated circle 155 A.D.) of Gautami Balasri. Gautamiputa stakarni conquered it from theSakas. According to the Mahavamsa, the third Buddhist council deputed Great elder Dharamarakshita to do missionary 105
work in Aparantaka region. Literacy evience locates the Abhiras in this region, who probably were responsible for identifying Lord Krishna as the diety of cowherd and milk-maids. In matters relating to trade and commerce it was famous for the production of cotton textiles in ancient times and ated, as the hinterland for the ancient ports of Bharukachechha and Sopara. 6. ARIKAMEDU near Pondicherry, known to the periplus as podoka, wa port of call in Sangam Times (200 B.C.) on the route of Malaya and china. Recent excavation during which a veryrich treasure of Roman beads, glass and coins, and of Roman and south Indian Pottery were found have proved that it was once a prosperous settlement of Western trading people, including the Romans. The favourable balance of Payments position ejoyed by India in its trade with Rome is amply revealed by the rich haul of Roman gold coins. 7. AYODHYA also known as A-yu-te or Abhur of Saketa on the river Sarya (Modern Ghaghra) in Faizabad district of U.P. was the earliest capital of the Kosala Janapade and was the seat of the epic hero, Rama. It is also known for its short Sanskrit inscription of king Dhandeva of Kosal (belonging probably to the first century B.C.) which refers to the conducting of two Asvamedha sacrifices by king Pushyamitra. From the economic view-point it was located on the important trade of Tamralipti- Rajagriha-Sravasti which passed via Ayodhya. 8. AMRAVATI near modern Vijayawada (Andhra Pradesh), is famous for its stupa and as an art center flourishing under the Satavahanas and the pallavas. Second century works of art khow mastery of stone sculpture. Amravati bas-reliefs have the representation of ancient Indian vehicles – the boat or the ship or the cart, and of a foreign mission (like the Ajanta cave paintings) of marchants being received by a king. In ancient times is was an important center of trade, and ships from here sailed to Burma and Indonesia. It is maintained by some scholars that a human figure, for the first time, that a marble stone relief was executed. 9. ASIKA (Probably on the left bankof the river Krishna), is mentioned in the Nasik inscription (dated circe 115 A.D.) of Gautami Balasri, it was conquered by the Satavahana rular Gautamiputra Satakarini (………) The latter fact reveals that Gautamiputra Satakarni gained a stronger hold of southern India which proved beneficial because of the continuing Saka pressure even after his victory against the Sakas. King Kharavela of Kalinga also made a claim of its conquest. 10. AVANTI (western Malva) one of the 16 Janapadas of 6th century B.C. with its capital at Ujjain; struggle dhard against Magadhan imperialism but in vain.
According to Buddhist traditions, Asoka, the Mauryan ruler, served as the Viceroy of Avanti, while he was a prince. Since Malwa region is important politically, and economically it became a bone of contention between the Sakas. And the Satavahanas, Rashtrakutas and Pratiharas in ancient India. It is through this region that the importanttrade routes from eastern and western Indian passed Via Ujjain to the important Western ports Bharukachchha (Broach) and Soparaka (Sopara). 11. ANGA one of the 16th Janapadas of 16th century B.C. Lay to the east of Magadha with Champa, near Bhagalpur, as its capital. Some of the Anga 106
monarchas, like Brahmadatta, appear to have defeated their Magadha contemporaries. Subsequently, however, Magadha emerged supreme leading to the establishment of the first empire of ancient India. In other words, the conquest of Anga by Magadha was one of the stepping stones for the Magadhan Empire. NOTE ON PLACES AND AREAS IN ANCIENT INDIA 12. BARHUT in central Indian is famous for Buddhist Stupa and stone railings which replaced the wooden ones in the Sunga period. Barhut sculptures depict the visit of king Ajatasatru to the Buddha. Barhut along with Sanchi and Bodh-Gaya represent the first organized art activity of the Indian people as a whole. Furthermore, all these clearly indicate the transition of sculpture from wood to stone. 13. BARYGAZA OR BHARUKACHCHA (Broach) was the oldest and largest northern most entrepot on the mouth of the Narmada river in modern Maharashtra. It handled the bulk of the trade with western Asia (Jataka stories and the Periplus mention it). It was also one of the district head quarters of the Saka rulers. According to Jain traditions, it was the capital of the Saka empire. It was international trade that mode Barygaza important in ancient India. 14. BARBARICUM was an important port in the Indus delta, receiving Chinese furs and silks through Bacteria for export to the West. It added to the growing prosperity of India in the first century A.D. 15. BADAMI (MODERN NAME FOR VATAPI) in Bijapur district was founded by pulkesin I as an early capital of the Western Chalukyas. It as a hill-fort and an exquisite cave temple of lord Vishnu excavated during the rule of Manglesh, the Chalukya ruler. Huen-tsang visited it. 16. BODH-GAYA situated six miles south of Gaya in Bihar on the western bank of the Nilajan river, was the place where the Buddha attained enlightenement. It was part of the Magadha janapada. 17. BANAVASI (north kanara in Karnataka) also known as Vaijayanti, was the capital of the Kadambas who were defeated by the Chalukya king Kirtivarman during the last quarter of the 6th century A.D. According to the Ceylonese chronicles Ashoka sent a mission to Deccan with the Monk Rkshita who went as far as Banavasi. 18. BRAHMAGIRI in Chitaldurg district of Karnataka, is remarkable for its continuity of cultural heritage extending from Neolithic (stone-age culture) to megalithic (early historic culture-3rd century B.C. to Ist century B.C. with possible links with Mediter anean and Caucasian Megaliths) revealing ancestory worship and animism pointing to the practice of cist and pit burials. It is the site of one of the two minor rock edicts of Askoka. These edicts suggest the provability of Ashoka entering the Sangha as a full monk after two and a half years of his conversion to Buddhism.
19. BURZAHOM in Kashmir Valley near Srinagar, is associated with megalithic settlements (dating 2400 B.C.) where the people lived on a plateau in pits using tools and weapons of stone (axe) and bones. (The only other site which has yielded considerable bone implements is Chirand, 40 km. West of Patna on the northern bank of the Ganges and using coarse grey pottery. The information that we gather from the two places, recently discovered, throws light on the proto-histroy of India). 20. BAMIYAN an important Buddhist and Gandhara Art center in Afghanistan in the early Christian centuries, has tall rock-cut Buddha statues. The ancient trade route 107
linking north western India with China passed through it. It was the capital of the Hunas in the 5th and the 6th centuries A.D. 21. BELUR with a group of Hoysala monuments including the famous Chennakesava temple (built around 1117 A.D.) represents an art which applies to stone the technique of the ivory worker or the goldsmith.