Mahabharata dating

08 Apr

There exists a long tradition of astronomical dating of Indian epics (done by studying celestial events like eclipses, comets, and planetary positions mentioned in texts), some by scholars, and now with easily available software packages, increasingly by amateurs.A quick search on the internet would have you believe that astronomy has already proved the veracity of the Ramayana and the Mahabharata, with countless websites carrying contradictory data. Take the case of the discrepant dating that astronomy throws up for the Mahabharata.

To keep this in context, remember that the Mature Harappan Period was from 2500 – 1900 BCE.

He then looked for eclipses within that period, and one by one, he says, it all fell into place.

“According to my research, the war would have started on 14 October 1792 [1793 BCE].” A balding middle-aged man with the benign manner of one who spends a large part of his time behind mounds of data, Bhatnagar now works as the technical director of the Delhi chapter of I-Serve (Institute of Scientific Research on Vedas, an NGO).

Kalyan Raman clarified the purpose of the colloquium in his introductory remarks. Suryanath Kamath, in his Presidential address explained the objective as an ' exploration of the authenticity of dates using planetary software and textual evidences containing over 150 references.' He felt that 'chronology was most important for the history of any society since history without chronology is like a body without a skeleton.' He also gave a detailed explanation of the development of the Mythic library and the collections.

He stated the possibility of 672 eclipse pairs, ten 'thirteen day lunar first' eclipse pairs and concluded that 2559 BC eclipse pair was nearest to the text of Mahabharata.