It is in ‘Time’ that we exist.
It is in ‘Time’ that we evolve.
It is in ‘Time’ that we die.
Life is just a play of TIME.
Time has been the most contended topic over decades. Vedas give the most engrossing concept of the time. The spin of the planet, human energies, human possibilities and human destiny are so deeply intertwined with the play of time.
The Surya Siddhant – estimated to be around 15 to 25 thousand years old. In the Vedas, Time is equated with the Kala (Consciousness Time) is the source of the divisions of time. It unites procession recession and stasis.
“Kalo gatinivrtti sthiti: samdadhati” (Sankhayana Aranyaka 7.20).
Time, according to Surya Siddhanta, has both its virtual and practical divisions; the former is called murta (embodied), the latter amurta (virtual or Unembodied). The Surya Siddhanta delineates that ‘what begins with prana (respiration) is called real; that what begins with truti (atoms) is called unreal.
Smallest Unit of Time
Vedic astronomy give a very detailed division of the Time upto the lowest sub division level of prāņa (respiration), a time lapse of four seconds. The lowest sub divisions prāņa is the same part of the day as the minute is of the circle, so that a respiration of time is equivalent to a minute of apparent revolution of the heavenly bodies above the earth. The astronomical division of sidereal time are:
|1 paramanu||60,750th of a second|
|1 truţi||=||29.6296 microseconds|
|1 tatpara||=||2.96296 milliseconds|
|1 nimesha||=||88.889 milliseconds|
|45 nimesha||=||1 prāņa||4 seconds|
|6 prāņa||=||1 vinādī||24 seconds|
|60 vinādīs||=||1 nadī||24 minutes|
|60 nādīs||=||1 ahorātra|
As, according to modern standards, 24 hours make 1 day and night, one finds that, 1 nādi or daņda is equal to 24 minutes, 1 vinādī is equal to 24 seconds, 1 asu or prāņa is equal to 4 seconds, 1 nimesha is equal to 88.889 milliseconds, 1 tatpara is equal to 2.96296 milliseconds and finally 1 truţi is equal to 29.6296 microseconds or 33,750th part of second. It is really amazing that the Indian astronomers, at such a long time ago, could conceive and obviously could measure such a small interval of time like truţi. It should be mentioned here that, 1 unit of prāņa is the time an average healthy man needs to complete one respiration or to pronounce ten long syllables called guravakşara.
The Puranic division of the day is somewhat different. According to this, Kala (Time) is born out of Sun. The counting starts from nimesha (twinkling of an eye). (Source: Sūrya Siddhānta).
|100 truti (atoms)||= 1 tatpara (speck)|
|30 tatpara (specks)||= 1 nimesha (twinkling)|
|18 nimesha (twinklings)||= 1 kashtha (bit)|
|30 kashtha (bits)||= 1 kala (~minute)|
|30 kala (minutes)||= 1 ghatika (~half-hour)|
|2 ghatika (half hour)||= 1 kshana/muhūrta (~hour)|
|30 kshana/muhūrta (hour)||= 1 ahorātra (~day).|
“Truti” is referred to as a quarter of the time of falling of an eye lid.
1 muhūrta equal to 48 minutes, 1 ghaţi equal to 24 minutes. 1 kalā equal to 48 seconds, 1 kāşţhā equal to 1.6 seconds and 1 nimeşa equal to 88.889 milliseconds as obtained above. In its daily motion, the earth rotates around its axis at a speed of nearly 1660 Km per hour and its illuminated half is called ahh (day) and the dark half is called rātri (night). From the system of units of time given above, one finds that 60 ghaţis or nādīs make 1 day and night.
Vedic astronomical texts divide the above units of time broadly into two categories; (i) mūrttakālah and (ii) amūrtakālah. The units of the former kind are manifested (mūrttah) by the nature while, those of the latter kind are created by man. From this view point, ahorātra, prāņa or asu. nimeşa are mūrttakālah and the rest are amūrttakālah.
Speed of light = 2202 yojanas in half nimesha.
1 yojana = 9 miles (approx)
1 Nimesha = 16/75th of a second
2202 yojanas X 9 miles X 75/8 nimesha = 185.794 miles per second.
The distances between the planets and the earth were quite accurately measured without the use of heavy equipment in the ancient times.
From the first chapter of Surya-Siddhanta, the most revered authoritative source of Hindu astronomy, we have the following passage:
- That which begins with respirations (prana) is called real…….Six respirations make a vinadi, sixty of these a nadi:
- And sixty nadis make a sidereal day and night. Of thirty of these sidereal days is composed a month; a civil (savana) month consists of as many sunrises;
- A lunar month, of as many lunar days (tithi); a solar (saura) month is determined by the entrance of the Sun into a sign of the zodiac; twelve months make a year. This is called a day of the gods.
- The day and night of the devas are mutually opposed to one another. Six times sixty of them are a year of the devas.
15 & 16. Twelve thousand of these divine years are denominated a chatur-yuga; of ten-thousand times four hundred and thirty two solar years is composed that chatur-yuga, with its dawn and twilight. The difference of the krita-yuga and the other yugas, as measured by the difference in the number of the feet of virtue in each is as follows:
- The tenth part of a chatur-yuga, multiplied successively by four, three, two, and one, gives the length of the krita and the other yugas: the sixth part of each belongs to its dawn and twilight.
- One and seventy chatur-yugas make a manu; at its end is a twilight which has the number of years of a krita-yuga, and which is a deluge.
- In a kalpa are reckoned fourteen manus with their respective twilights; at the commencement of the kalpa is a fifteenth dawn, having the length of a krita-yuga.
- The kalpa, thus composed of a thousand chatur-yugas, and which brings about the destruction of all that exists, is a day of Brahma; his night is of the same length.
- His extreme age is a hundred, according to this valuation of a day and a night. The half of his life is past; of the remainder, this is the firsts kalpa.
- And of this kalpa, six manus are past, with their respective twilights; and of the Manu son of Vivasvat, twenty seven chatur-yugas are past;
- Of the present, the twenty eighth chatur-yuga, this krita yuga is past……..
- Multiplication of 9*12– both of 9 and 12 have been said to have spiritual significance in many traditions. 9 times 12 is 108.
- Powers of 1, 2, & 3– 1 to the 1st power is 1; 2² is 4; 3 cubed is 27. 1*4*27 = 108
- Harshad Number – 108 is a Harshad number, which is an integer divisible by the sum of its digits (Harshad is from Sanskrit, and means “great joy”)
- Desires | Lies | Delusions – There are said to be 108 earthly desires in mortals, 108 lies humans tell, and 108 human delusions or forms of ignorance.
- River Ganges– The sacred River Ganges spans a longitude of 12° (~79° to ~91°) and a latitude of 9° ~(22° to ~31°). 12 times 9 is 108.
- Sanskrit Alphabet– there are 54 letters in the Sanskrit alphabet. Each has masculine and feminine, Shiva and Shakti, forms. 54 times 2 is 108.
- Heart Chakra (Anahata / अनाहत) – the chakras are intersections of energy lines in the subtle body, and there are said to be a total of 108 energy lines converging to form the Heart Chakra. One of them, Sushumna leads to the Crown Chakra (Sahasrara / सहस्रार), and is said to be the path to Self-realization.Four part YouTube courseon the chakras, presented practically and clearly by Nayaswami Asha.
- Atman – it is said the Atman (आत्मन् – Hindu concept similar to the Western concept of a human soul) goes through 108 stages on its journey.
- Pranayama– If one is able to be so calm in meditation as to have only 108 breaths in a day, enlightenment will come.
- Upanishads– there are 108 Upanishads (texts of wisdom of the ancient sages) according to the Mundakopanishad. Amazon Link to Upanishads
- Sri Yantra -On the Sri Yantra there are marmas where three lines intersect, and there are 54 such intersections. Each intersection has masculine and feminine, Shiva and Shakti, qualities. 54 times 2 is 108. Thus, there are 108 points that define the Sri Yantra, as well as the human body.
- Marmas– marmas, or marmasthanas, are like smaller chakras that have fewer energy lines converging to form them. There are said to be 108 marmas in the subtle body.
- Pentagon– The angle formed by two adjacent lines in a pentagon equals 108 degrees.
- Gopis of Krishna– in the Krishna (कृष्ण) tradition, there were said to be 108 gopis or maid servants of Krishna.
- Hindu Devas– 108 is said to refer to the number of Hindu deities (or devas / देव). Some believe that each of the deities has 108 names.
- Time& Emotions – some say there are 108 feelings, with 36 related to the past, 36 related to the present, and 36 related to the future.
- Jainism – in the Jain religion (wiki), 108 are the combined virtues of five categories of holy ones, including 12, 8, 36, 25, and 27 virtues respectively.
- Buddhism – some Buddhists carve 108 small Buddhas on a walnut for good luck. Some ring a bell 108 times to celebrate a new year. There are said to be 108 virtues to cultivate and 108 defilements to avoid.
- Chinese Connections – the Chinese Buddhists and Taoists use a 108 bead mala, which is called a Su-Chu, and has three dividing beads. Thus, the mala is divided into three parts of 36 each. Chinese astrology says there are 108 sacred stars. Silver Moon Connection– in astrology, the metal silver is said to represent the Moon. The atomic weight of silver is 108.
- Vedic Astrology– there are 12 constellations and 9 arc segments (called namshas or chandrakalas). 9 times 12 is 108. Chandra (चन्द्र) is a lunar God, and kalas (Kala / काल is Sanskrit for “time”) are the divisions of time within a whole.
- Astrological Houses– In astrology, there are 12 houses and 9 planets. 12 times 9 is 108.
- Tantra & Breath– Tantra estimates the average number of breaths per day at 21,600, of which 10,800 are solar energy, and 10,800 are lunar energy. Multiplying 108 by 100 is 10,800.
And last but no the least.
- Sun | Earth | Moon– The diameter of the Sun is 108 times the diameter of the Earth. The distance from the Sun to the Earth is 108 times the diameter of the Sun. The average distance of the Moon from the Earth is 108 times the diameter of the Moon.
The precession (caused by gradual rotation of the Earth’s axis) of the equinoxes is the period of time that it takes the Earth’s axis to pass through one complete cycle of the zodiac. It takes the planet 72 years to pass through one degree of the zodiac and 25,920 years to complete one full circle of 360 degrees. One half of the journey takes 12,960 years and covers the four yugas. Satya Yuga lasts 5184 years. Treta Yuga lasts 3888 years. Dwapara Yuga lasts 2592 years. Kali Yuga lasts 1296 years. These four yugas taken together come to a total of 12,960 years.
432 is a special number not only in Indian culture but also in Egyptian and many other cultures.
The division of earth into longitude and latitude measurements gives us the 60 degree (minutes) divisions. Each 60 degree division is one nautical mile. Which leads us to the circumference of the earth at the equator is 21,600 miles (Number of breaths a human takes in a day approximately)
A Vedic conception of Time:
“The time concept of modern archeology, and modern anthropology in general, resembles the general cosmological-historical time concept of Europe’s Judeo-Christian culture. Differing from the cyclical cosmological-historical time concepts of the early Greeks in Europe, and the Indians and others in Asia, the Judeo-Christian cosmological-historical time concept is linear and progressive.
“Hindu historical literatures, particularly the Puranas and Itihasas, place human existence in the context of repeating time cycles called yugas and kalpas, lasting hundreds of millions of years. During this entire time, according to the Puranic accounts, humans coexisted with creatures in some ways resembling the earlier toolmaking hominids of modern evolutionary accounts.”
The solar system with the Sun and the planets around it is moving in the galaxy. It takes 25,920 years for our solar system to complete one cycle around a larger star. From the effects upon the planet, we believe this big star or big system that our system is going around is not located in the center of the orbit but somewhere to the side. Whenever our solar system comes closer to this big system, all the creatures living in our system rise to greater possibilities. Whenever our system moves away from it, the creatures living in our system come to the lowest level of possibility – we say this is Kali Yuga.
When our solar system is closer to the “Super Sun,” Satya Yuga will begin. The human mind will be at its highest capability. People’s ability to know life, people’s ability to communicate, people’s ability to live joyfully will be at its highest. Or in other words, we will have sensible people. All it takes to live well on this planet is a bunch of sensible people.
In Satya Yuga, human ability to communicate will be at its best because the ether will be very close. Right now, the etheric sphere of the planet is raised to a certain point. There was a time when it was much higher – now it has come a little closer. When the ether is very close and I want to convey something to you, I do not have to say it. Even when my eyes are closed, you will know what I want to say. When the ether rises a little bit but is still at a certain distance, if I close my eyes, you will not know, but if I open my eyes and look at you, you will know what I want to convey.
There have been a total of six Brahma cycles in the past, the present one said to be the seventh one, each having a life span of hundred years. They are :
Life time of one brahma is known as “para”, which is divided into two halves called “Parardham”. The present Brahma has completed 50 years. A year of Brahma is called “Kalpa” and each “Kalpa” has 14 Manvantras.
Creation takes place during the Udaya Kalpas (days) while he rests during the rest Kshaya Kalpas (Nights) So far 6 Manvantras ruled by 6 Manus have passed away and we are going through the 7th one called Varaha Kalpa and Vaivasvata Manvantra.
Equal to 4.32 billion years, a “day of Brahma” or one thousand mahayugas, measuring the duration of the world. Each kalpa is divided into 14 manvantara periods, each lasting 71 yuga cycles (306,720,000 years).
Samvatsara — The Year Cycles
Samvatsara is a Sanskrit term for “year”. In Hindu tradition, there are 60 Samvatsaras, each of which has a name. Once all 60 samvatsaras are over, the cycle starts over again. The sixty Samvatsaras are divided into 3 groups of 20 Samvatsaras each. The first 20 from Prabhava to Vyaya are attributed to Brahma. The next 20 from Sarvajit to Parabhava to Vishnu & the last 20 to Shiva.
The 60 Samvatsaras are:
|1. Prabhava||13. Pramāthin||25. Khara||37. Shobhana||49. Rākshasa|
|2. Vibhava||14. Vikrama||26. Nandana||38. Krodhin||50. Anala|
|3. Shukla||15. Vrisha||27. Vijaya||39. Vishvāvasu||51. Pingala|
|4. Pramoda||16. Chitrabhānu||28. Jaya||40. Parābhava||52. Kālayukti|
|5. Prajāpati||17. Svabhānu||29. Manmatha||41. Plavanga||53. Siddhārthin|
|6. Āngirasa||18. Tārana||30. Durmukha||42. Kīlaka||54. Raudra|
|7. Shrīmukha||19. Pārthiva||31. Hemalambin||43. Saumya||55. Durmati|
|8. Bhāva||20. Vyaya||32. Vilambin||44. Sādhārana||56. Dundubhi|
|9. Yuvan||21. Sarvajit||33. Vikārin||45. Virodhikrit||57. Rudhirodgārin|
|10. Dhātri||22. Sarvadhārin||34. Shārvari||46. Paritāpin||58. Raktāksha|
|11. Īshvara||23. Virodhin||35. Plava||47. Pramādin||59. Krodhana|
|12. Bahudhānya||24. Vikrita||36. Shubhakrit||48. Ānanda||60. Kshaya|
Once the 60 names are finished, the next year starts with the first name again. This goes on in a cyclic manner.
Seven Days of Week
Why seven days make a week? And wherefrom the names of these seven days have come? Every Indian will be pleased to know that it is also a gift of India to the entire world. We have seen earlier that, 60 ghaţis or daņdas make one day and night or ahorātra. Indian astronomers dedicated each ghaţi of the day to a planet as its lord and derived the name of the day as per the lord of the first ghaţi of the day.
|rahu & ketu||eclipse|
The sun or Ravi being the most powerful among the planets, as well as the giver and sustainer of life, has been honoured to be the lord of first ghaţi of the first day of the week. Hence it is named Ravivāra or Sunday. In Figure-1, the lords of second and third ghaţis of Ravivāra are Mars and Jupiter respectively. Proceeding in this manner, Saturn is the lord of the 60th ghaţi of Ravivāra and the moon or Soma becomes the lord of the first ghaţi of the following day and hence it is named Somavāra or Monday (Moonday). One may notice here that in counting 60 ghaţis along the circle of Firure-1, one has to make 8 complete revolutions and 4 more planets and hence starting from a particular planet, the 5th place gives the name of the following day. In this manner one finally arrives at Śanivāra or Saturday (Saturnday) and starting from Śanivāra one observes that the next day is Ravivāra and thus the cycle is completed.
It may be recalled that the Horā System is not essential for naming he seven days of a week and primarily it was done by the Vedic astronomers dividing a day and night into 60 ghaţis or 60 daņdas. Hence, we may conclude without doubt that, it is the Vedic astronomers who named the seven days of a week using the original Indian system of dividing a day and night into 60 ghaţis and in their subsequent attempt they have shown that, one can arrive at the same results using 24 horās as well. In a verse (1/296) of Yājňavalkya Samhitā, the names of the planets are given exactly in the order of week days and hence there is every reason to believe that the names of the planets in that verse were mentioned particularly as the lords of the seven days of a week. This makes Professor S. B. Dixit to believe that the names of the seven days of a week were known in the times of Yājňavalkya Samhitā.
Cycles in the Sky and in the Human Body:
In the yogic astronomy, we divide the orbit of the Earth around the Sun into 27 segments, called nakshatras. Each nakshatra is further divided into four equal sectors called padas or steps. Multiply 4 by 27 and it equals 108. These 108 units mark the 108 steps that the Earth takes through space. Each nakshatra corresponds to one half of the lunar orbit around the Earth. The cycles within the human body respond and correspond to that.
In a woman’s body, there are very obvious cycles of 27.55 days if she is perfectly healthy. In a man’s body, the cycles are less obvious and pronounced – they happen in a different way and are of a larger span of time.
In a recent medical study, it has been scientifically proven that Men experience hormonal fluctuations too. The hormone fluctuations in women are vertiginous. Plotted on a graph they resemble a roller coaster. For men, we all know this is NOT the case. We all know that MEN DON’T HAVE PERIODS, but keep in mind that hormones are messengers and work on feedback loops that are dynamic. In men, hormones, specifically that of testosterone, need to follow a rhythm for proper feedback to occur. Patterns emerge, manifesting these changes in relative blood concentrations that have been regularly measured.
For men, the hormone cycle mainly relates to one hormone: TESTOSTERONE. Testosterone in men follows a circadian rhythm – highest in the morning, lowest at bedtime, hence men’s propensity for morning erections. This makes it much simpler. So instead of a 1 month cycle, men have a 24 hr cycle.
The process breaks down like this: The pituitary gland in men releases follicular stimulating hormone (FSH) and luteinizing hormone (LH) in response to low levels of serum testosterone. FSH stimulates the formation of sperm (Sertoli cells), and LH stimulates the formation of testosterone (Interstitial cells). When the testosterone inventories are high enough, the pituitary quiets down and serum concentration gradually decreases until the whole process begins again, sometime in the early hours of the morning the following day. The circadian testosterone cycle has been well studied and verified.
Throughout history there have been various attempts to establish the existence of a male cycle.
In any case, these cycles are happening all the time in the solar system and the larger universe. The microcosm and the macrocosm both are playing the same game. But who should play whose game? If you think the macrocosm is going to play your game, you will waste your life. If you play the macrocosm’s game, your life will be beyond your expectations.