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Lets see some Vedic quotes which says earth is static.

  • Oh Man ! He who made the trembling earth static is Indra. (Rig Ved 2/12/12)
  • The God who made the earth stable (Yajur Ved 32/6)
  • Indra protects the wide earth which is immovable and has many forms (Atarv Ved 12/1/11)

  • Let us walk on the Wide and Static earth (Atharv Ved 12/1/17)

Is this correct? If not, what is the actual meaning of these verses?

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Does the earth feel unstable to you? You know it moves only because you have been taught that it is so. If Indra made the earth static, it should be understood has Indra offering an opposing force and stabilising the turbulence. Don't take everything literally. Understand that there may be more to it. – moonstar2001 Mar 29 at 14:59
INDRA= IND+DRA = FLOW OF ENERGY= RADIATION OF EARTH That what makes the surface of the earth to be in solid state – Sudhakar Reddy Apr 12 at 17:34
up vote 5 down vote accepted

First of all, we can not believe translations to Sanskrit language as such. Even sanskrit experts have difficulties in defining the meaning of some words. And here is my explanation for your specific question. Let me answer this using your quotes itself.

The very first quote is against the earth static view.

  • Oh Man ! He who made the trembling earth static is Indra. (Rig Ved 2/12/12)

Just give proper look at this sentence and get what is the meaning of this sentence. This is an exclamatory sentence where it is emphasizing the power of Indra. The sentence simply means the Indra is powerful enough to make the trembling and moving earth still. That means rigveda is sure about it's movement. So the first quote proves that the static theorem which you pointed is wrong.

  • The God who made the earth stable (Yajur Ved 32/6)

The word 'stable' does not mean the earth is still, it do have a lot other meanings which are more suitable.

  • Indra protects the wide earth which is immovable and has many forms (Atarv Ved 12/1/11)

'Immovable' means which can not be moved by a force. That does not mean it is static. The text could be from a point of view from a common man, for him it is certainly immovable. Isn't it?

  • Let us walk on the Wide and Static earth (Atharv Ved 12/1/17)

The only quote which has a word 'static' is this one(and the question is up with the helping hand from this quote only). As this is only a translation, this one also can not be counted as a relevant one to be put forward the static earth view in the question.

And please see the synonyms of static: unchanged, fixed, stable, steady, unchanging, changeless, unvarying, invariable, constant, consistent, uniform, undeviating

Also as mentioned in the other answers here, vedas known that earth is round and it is rotating around sun ages before the modern scientists.

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Ancient Hindu spelled out concept of Heliocentric Universe as long back as Rigveda, which by conservative estimates can be traced to ~2000 BCE.

This hymn in Rigveda explains my position,

Upon this five-spoked wheel revolving ever all living creatures rest and are dependent. Its axle, heavy-laden, is not heated: the nave from ancient time remains unbroken. RV 1.164.13

Explanation: The five -spoked wheel is the 'Earth' and five spokes refer to the five climatic regions, 2 frigid, 2 temperate and the tropical zone. The revolution is the spinning of Earth about it's axis and which remains un-heated even after innumerable rotations.

High on the forehead of the Bull one chariot wheel ye ever keep, The other round the sky revolves. RV 1.30.19

Explanation: The Bull here is the Dasyu (sky) and the sun is the 'forehead of sky'. The wheel on the other hand, is the orbital motion of Sun.

For other hymns which conceptualize heliocentric universe, refer The Celestial Key to the Vedas.

Note that these concepts were purely based on observations and hence mythology and astronomy was amalgamated as seen never before. This was the main reason, in my opinion for the usage of 'strange' words.

The hymns OP quoted uses words like 'trembling', 'static' and 'immovable' with respect to Earth. These words describes the 'relative stability' of earth when compared to other terrestrial objects like trees and rock. For a casual observer, Earth is still and it feels only trembling when there's an earthquake.

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This is my idea!

Keeping Earth static may mean giving stability or gravity to earth which makes life possible. It may also seem like the Earth is making balance between the centripetal and centrifugal forces.

Vedas said that sun is the center of universe and all planets revolve & rotate around the sun and also, Moon shines because of the Sun!

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Earth rotates in two ways by the Will of Brahama, first it rotates on its axis secondly it revolves around sun. Days and Nights are distinguished when moves on its axis. Season change when it revolves around Sun". (Vishnu Puran)

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Welcome to Hinduism.SE. Can you add more details to your answer? e.g., which book/chapter of Vishnu Purana discusses the rotation of Earth? You can find the English translation of Vishnu Purana here. – sv. Mar 27 at 22:20

According to science too, Earth is static, it depends on the frame of reference. If you take the Geocentric model, Earth is static as it is considered the frame of reference.

This is in sync with Jyotisha. It is argued that as Earth and its inhabitants are to be studied, so Earth should be considered the centre point (frame of reference). Movement of planets, with Earth as static, is considered and calculated in great details.

What the Shlokas say is also perfectly in sync with these points of view.

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Another mysterious downvote! :) – Amit Saxena May 9 at 16:39
I'm not the downvoter, but you should probably only answer if you know the Vedic verses OP is referring to :) Your current answer is more of a comment (under the question), than an answer. – sv. May 9 at 23:34
What do you mean by if I 'know the verses'? OP has already mentioned the verses. The next best thing would have been Sanskrit shlokas, ofcourse. – Amit Saxena May 10 at 4:25
Yes, I meant if you know the correct Sanskrit translation of those verses & also of the ones before or after those verses and then maybe you can try to guess the original meaning/intent. – sv. May 10 at 4:33
@sv. I agree to that (I would have if OP had mentioned the Sanskrit Slokas) Anyways, the point of view from which I am answering is that I am generally aware that Earth is considered static in Hindu texts. All this rubbish that is a 'backward' thought is just to denigrate things. It is just a matter of frame of reference. I will add some references, though – Amit Saxena May 10 at 5:03

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