आपणास माझे लेखन आवडते आहे असे ब्लॉगला भेट देणारांच्या वाढत्या संख्येवरून वाटते. विषेशकरून कर्णकथेला वाचक पुष्कळ मिळाले. आपल्या प्रतिक्रिया जरूर मिळावयास हव्यात! त्याशिवाय लिहीत राहण्याचा उत्साह कसा टिकून रहाणार?
I changed over from Marathi to English for my comments on Shri. Oak's book recently. I continue to get readers but there are no comments! Wonder whether I am boring!

Last Seven Days

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San Ramon and Mumbai, California and Maharashtra, United States
ज्येष्ठ नागरिक. साहित्य व संगीत प्रेमी. Senior Citizen

Sunday, October 18, 2015

Further Comments

Let us examine now Shri. Achar’s findings by Planetarium.
He has concentrated on the two planetary positions viz. Saturn at Rohini and Mars going Vakra before reaching Jyeshtha to identify years for further study. He finds 17 such years within the window of 3500 BCE and 500 CE. There would be more such years if we go back further. I have no resources to identify them in any case. To eliminate from the 17 years, he falls back upon lunar eclipse on kartika purnima to narrow the choice to two only and the final choice is made based on winter solstice being on or near Magha Shukla Ashtami, the traditional tithi of Bhishma Nirvan. For the year 3067 BCE he claims that Winter Solstice occurred in 3066 on Jan 13, on Magha Shukla Panchami, just prior to the reqd. tithi and so it passes all tests.
He then gives a table showing Julian Dates for his time-line of events, beginning from Krishna’s departure from Upaplavya to Bhishma’s death. I presume one needs dates and not month-tithi to access the planetarium.
1. Regarding Saturn being at Rohini there is no doubt what-so-ever as the map of Sept. 29 shows it clearly at Rohini and being a slow-mover would remain in Rohini over the whole period.
2. Regarding retrograde motion of Mars there are some questions! Figure 6.5 shows motion of Mars from Dec. 8, 3068 to Oct 8 3067 with dates marked for events on the path. It is seen that Mars starts on Dec 8, 3068 from between Chitra and Vishakha. It turns Retrograde in Feb 3067, when between Vishakha and Anuradha, in fact well before reaching Jyeshtha. Then it becomes Prograde in May 3067, at a spot well behind Vishakha and then goes straight to Shravan on Oct 8, the date of Krishna Karna dialogue.
On the day of the dialogue, Mars is at Shravan. It was past Vishakha and ‘approaching Anuradha’ very much earlier, on 26th July. Then on 15th Aug., 2 months before the dialogue, it is seen to have already moved through Anuradha and Jyeshtha to Moola or a little beyond, and on the date of the dialogue Mars is 5 nakshatras beyond Anuradha!
Karna describes Mars position to Krishna as, ‘having gone retrograde before reaching Jyeshtha, it turned prograde and was approaching Anuradha and pleading for friendship.’ (‘अनुराधां प्रार्थयते मैत्रम्’). The use of present tense by Karna is worth noting. Does the position described above match with this description? NO! To match it, Mars should have been at or just approaching Anuradha. The actual position as shown on Shri. Achar’s Fig. 6.5 can be more appropriately described as ‘Anuradha had flatly rejected Mars’ friendship request and so Mars has gone away in a huff to Shravan!’ I am afraid the retrograde motion of Mars for 3067 BCE does not match what Karna said.
I cannot verify whether in any other year when Saturn was in Rohini within the period 3500 BCE to 500 CE or ‘earlier than 3500 BCE’, there was a retrograde motion of Mars more satisfactorily matching what Karna described. Only experts with access to Planetarium software can do it. I hope someone does it. 3067 BCE does not fit the bill.
3. Shri. Achar gives Sept 29, 3067 as the day of Kartika Purnima and verifies a lunar eclipse on that day and shows the eclipse in Fig. 6.3.
This eclipse can hardly be described as total or near total eclipse. It is a very small partial eclipse. It does not match Vyasa’s description of moon as ‘अलक्ष्यः, प्रभयाहीनः, रक्तवर्णः’
4. Next Shri. Achar asserts that on Magha Shukla Panchami winter solstice occurred. Let us do a little ‘back of envelope’ verification. On Summer solstice day in this year 2015, sun just moved from Mrug to Ardra or was just on the borderline between these two nakshatras according to Salgaokar’s Kalanirnay. Winter Solstice this year therefore would be on the mid point of Moola. In 3067 BCE, i. e. 5082 years back, it would have occurred 5082/960 = 5.3 nakshatras ahead or in last quarter of Shatataraka. On Pushya Amavasya Moon and Sun should be in Dhanishtha based on the assumption that moon was in Pushya on Poush Purnima and it was a full Paksha of 15 days. (The possibility of moon and sun both being at end part of Shravan on the Amavasya also exists.) From there Sun would take at least 15 days to reach last quarter point of Shatataraka. On Shukla Panchami, in 5 days, it would be still in Dhanishtha only! I have examined this position primarily because Shri. Achar claims Winter Solstice on Magha Shukla Panchami as a clinching evidence in favor of 3067 BCE as the war year. The mismatch needs to be examined by Shri. Achar. An year when winter solstice was in Dhanishtha would greatly increase the possibility of Magha Shukla Ashtami being on winter solstice day.
5. The solar eclipse on Oct 14, assuming it did occur as claimed, is on 15th day after the lunar eclipse on 29th Sept. The Paksha length is therefore the normal full length. So where is the ‘short’ lunar fortnight of only 13 days? If it is the next one from the solar eclipse day, the next Purnima and the eclipse, if any, should be on 27th Oct. Shri. Achar claims to have found a lunar eclipse alright but on 28th Oct. and shows it in Fig. 7.4. There is no eclipse on 27th Oct. So where has the ‘unusually short’ Lunar Fortnight of 13 days gone? Vyasa has emphatically spoken about the ‘short’ paksha and the researchers take it seriously. Hence the question.
It is thus seen that out of the four tests applied by Shri. Achar, only one, viz. Saturn at Rohini is established. Other three leave some questions unanswered. Mars is not shown as anywhere near Anuradha so cannot be considered as asking for friendship. Eclipse on Kartik Amavasya does not match the description by Vyasa as it is found to be only a nominal eclipse. Winter Solstice does not seem to match Magha Shukla Panchami or even Ashtami and there is no trace of a short lunar fortnight.

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