धर्मो रक्षति रक्षितः। Dharmo Raksati Raksitah.

Dharma protects those who protect it.

– Veda Vyas, Mahabharat

Book Review – The Historic Rama [Excerpt]

Source: The Historic Rama

Nilesh Oak’s second book, “The Historic Rama,” is about the dating of the Vālmīki Rāmāyaṇa. This book builds on the earlier work in which the Mahābhārata was dated to about 5561 BCE in the book, “When Did the Mahabharata War Happen? The Mystery of Arundhati.” The previous book helped to establish a firm upper bound of about 5500 BCE, since the Mahābhārata references the Rāmāyaṇa, not the other way around.

This is another excellent book which contains in a concise manner knowledge about how astronomical data in the form of visual astronomical observations as written in the Rāmāyaṇa, considered the first famous Indian historical epic from many thousands of years ago, is used alongside astronomical simulation software and previous researchers’ data to arrive at a specific date range and year of the events of the time of Śrī Rāma. The addition to this book beyond the previous one is the addition of geology, paleontology, hydrology, and genetics/genealogy (documented genealogy of at least 64 generations before Rama from other sources not in the book), since the time period referred to goes much further back, and the expanse of time allows one to use these fields of study to corroborate the visual observations. The Out of India Theory (OIT) is brought up again with a brief overview of evidence, which is used to support the Rāmāyaṇa and vice-versa.

Nilesh Oak’s work began about 18 years prior to the publication of this book, in which books by researchers on the topic were first read to ascertain the status of knowledge on the date of the Mahbhārata War, and barring an accurate date produced thus far, see what could be done to arrive at an accurate date, if possible. Before this could begin, the cataloging of astronomical data as found within the Mahābhārata had to be done, which apparently is not something that most of the researchers had done; using only the data as found in the text (as many references as possible) and not data found outside the epic in other works of writing.

This work was used to help corroborate an upper bound (latest time that the Rāmāyaṇa could have happened) to help place the visual astronomical observations found in the Rāmāyaṇa. It then became a matter of continuing the work of error eliminations and attempted failure to dispute the visual observations in relation to not only the recording of the time of the luni-solar calendar dates, the seasons, but also what geological features were described, such as when certain rivers were flowing where and how.

If you have not read the first book, “When Did the Mahabharata War Happen? The Mystery of Arundhati,” it is strongly suggested that you read that book first, since it gives you an idea of how a problem is outlined, along with theories and conjectures surrounding a problem. The reader is then given the basics of astronomy so as to help read the descriptions of the astronomical observations translated from the Mahābhārata, how astronomy was used to “tell time” during the time of the Mahābhārata, and how the epic tellings within this was used to convey the primary astronomical events written about here – the time when “Arundhatī walked ahead of Vasiṣṭha.” You will need this information in order to hit the ground running on terms like nakṣatras, precession of equinox, ecliptic path, and so on in this second book on the dating of the Rāmāyaṇa.

Important astronomical and seasonal events are provided to demonstrate the solving for the date range and year of the events in the Rāmāyaṇa, which sets the stage for providing a large number of observations and arriving at whether a particular observation could be falsified and ruled out. Conflicting observations are noted, and theories proposed by various researchers are examined to show why it is important to follow the scientific method of attempting to falsify these visual astronomical observations by looking at as complete as possible a picture of the event, which includes geology, paleontology, hydrology, and genetics. Oak gives clear examples from these researchers’ works to indicate that their proposals for dates of the events failed for lack of consideration of enough evidence for corroboration and faulty logic and research methods.

Lastly, a better theory is proposed, and implications, predictions, and new problems arising from this more recent research is laid out. A proposed timeline for the Rāmāyaṇa is given, along with a listing of contributions to this effort that can be used to help the reader (a researcher, perhaps?) get started on corroborating the evidence. Oak presents his evidence on as many of the astronomical visual observations (those containing descriptions of seasons) as he could pull from the text (225+ observations). Of the 225+ observations tested, only 16 seasonal observations of Oak’s proposed timeline conflicted with that in the Rāmāyaṇa. The rest of the observations were corroborated.

Again, this book can be used to lay out the basics to begin your own research to corroborate the author’s findings. The author, unlike many of the previous researchers, included as many observations as possible within the limits of the size of this book and met them head-on, owning up to a few observations that were falsified or conflicting with the rest of the observations examined, with a request to the astronomy community to provide a solution to the conflicting observations, if possible. Falsification of over 225+ observations from the Rāmāyaṇa failed, leading to a very high likelihood that 12,300 to 12196 BCE is indeed the time frame. A better theory of the timeline for the Rāmāyaṇa is proposed, with specific events that occurred in the order as determined by the astronomical evidence. Also, as a result of the rigorous work done, new problems have arisen that need to be addressed, such as the building of Nala-Setu; knowledge of geography in Ramayana times, which included places outside of the Indian subcontinent, around the world, and yet an apparent lack of knowledge of the southern part of India; elephants with two, three, and four tusks; river and weather details; corroboration and meaning of big numbers in Ramayana, among several other problems to be addressed in future research.

In many places of the book, the reader is reminded of the need for the process of scientific work to be done properly. A lot of times, it is common for researchers to pick data that supports their conclusions and leave out or ignore those that contradict their theories, which often gives rise to bad theories based on mistakes, data omission, or an unwillingness to be detached from their research results. This book is what happens when these issues in research are addressed honestly and thoroughly.

The back of the book has a few appendices. Appendix A explores the origin of week day names, which points to a problem for the linear-technology-development model of history and archaeology – an apparent knowledge of the seven-day week in different parts of the world, and the evidence for the origin points to India. Appendix B goes into the migration of Sage Agastya to the south, as the Sage is referred to in the Rāmāyaṇa, and thusly, the problem of dating his migration by other researchers. The Vālmīki Rāmāyaṇa section has 348 references in Saṃskṛta listed for your research.

This book continues Oak’s efforts to turn upside-down our base of knowledge in archaeology and archaeo-astronomy. Currently, much attention has been focused on Egypt and ancient Europe, extending to the Near East/Western Asia and jumping over to east Asia. It would seem really odd that India is left out of the picture or lumped in with “South Asian Studies.” These regions, with the exception of east Asia, is centered around western civilization and the rise of Abrahamic religions, so it stands that the regions that have Abrahamic traditions focus on their past to the exclusion of other regions that don’t share this tradition history or profile.

To me, this is short-sighted – As I reminded the readers in the review of the previous book (Mahābhārata), “Why do we need a Rosetta Stone to translate early Demotic (just for reference to the age of writing at its earliest in this Stone – only 650 BCE at the earliest) and Hieroglyphics (about 3200 BCE at the earliest), but India has a continuous tradition leading much further back and thus doesn’t need a Rosetta stone to translate the earlier works?” Not only did the Indian civilization survive and remain continuous over time, but it stretches even further back than any other known civilization of ancient times, which means stretching back even further than the first book (Mahābhārata dating) by nearly double the time length our ideas of when many things had begun, such as writing, mathematics, astronomy, metallurgy, ship-building, medicine, farming, and so on. This pushes the Vedas even further back in antiquity, since the Rāmāyaṇa in turn references the Vedas.

This is another piece of evidence, the Rāmāyaṇa, of the sinusoidal nature of human civilization; it rises and falls not only on a local, regional, or civilizational level, but also on a world-wide basis. This is in direct contradiction with the “linear technological development” model of western archaeology and anthropology. Recent archaeological findings in recent years, especially in India, have contradicted the Aryan Invasion Theory, the modified Aryan Migration Theory, and the Out of Africa Theory. This book is another instance of showing again the addition of astronomy in the form of archeo-astronomy to the other schools of science used to examine the corpus of data that confirms India as the source of knowledge that Western civilization is based on, without which it would not exist, AND India’s proper place on the world stage as an advanced civilization that is mature in the matters of science, both outer and inner science, as shown in the ability to live as civilized human beings in balance with nature.

To Purchase Book Please Visit -> https://www.amazon.com/Historic-Rama-Indian-Civilization-Pleistocene-ebook/dp/B00I3KF9SC/ref=sr_1_10?s=digital-text&ie=UTF8&qid=1534838373&sr=1-10&keywords=the+history+rama