Is embryology mentioned in the Bhagavata Purana? Is it contradictory with present day biology?

  • 2
    I think your second question may not be apt for this site.
    – The Destroyer
    Commented Jun 3, 2017 at 17:04
  • @TheDestroyer because of the question speaks about biology?
    – user9554
    Commented Jun 3, 2017 at 17:09
  • Note that fetal growth has been well documented in all cultures. Though the embryo is hidden within the human body, the stages of growth are well known due to miscarriages and abortions at various stages of pregnancy. It is not Hinduism alone which has detailed knowledge about this. Commented Jun 4, 2017 at 19:16

1 Answer 1


Is embryology mentioned in bhagavata Purana?-

Yes it is mentioned in Shreemad Bhagvat Purana you can read it here SB 3.31 In the chapter SB 3.31: Lord Kapila’s Instructions on the Movements of the Living Entities.

कर्मणा दैवनेत्रेण जन्तुर्देहोपपत्तये |
स्त्रिया: प्रविष्टं उदरं पुंसो रेत: कणाश्रय: ||१||

karmaṇā daiva-netreṇa jantur dehopapattaye  
striyāḥ praviṣṭa udaraṁ puṁso retaḥ-kaṇāśrayaḥ 

The Personality of Godhead said: Under the supervision of the Supreme Lord and according to the result of his work, the living entity, the soul, is made to enter into the womb of a woman through the particle of male semen to assume a particular type of body. SB3.31.1

कललं त्वेकरात्रेण पञ्चरात्रेण बुद्बुदम् |
दशाहेन तु कर्कन्धु: पेश्यण्डं वा तत : परम् ||२||

kalalaṁ tv eka-rātreṇa pañca-rātreṇa budbudam 
daśāhena tu karkandhūḥ peśy aṇḍaṁ vā tataḥ param

On the first night, the sperm and ovum mix, and on the fifth night the mixture ferments into a bubble. On the tenth night it develops into a form like a plum, and after that, it gradually turns into a lump of flesh or an egg, as the case may be. SB3.31.2

मासेन तु शिरो द्वाभ्यां बाह्यान्घ्रादयङ्गविग्रह: |
नखलोमास्थिचर्मणि लिङ्गच्छिद्रोद्भवस्त्रिभि: ||३||

māsena tu śiro dvābhyāṁ bāhv-aṅghry-ādy-aṅga-vigrahaḥ 
nakha-lomāsthi-carmāṇi liṅga-cchidrodbhavas tribhiḥ

In the course of a month, a head is formed, and at the end of two months the hands, feet and other limbs take shape. By the end of three months, the nails, fingers, toes, body hair, bones and skin appear, as do the organ of generation and the other apertures in the body, namely the eyes, nostrils, ears, mouth and anus. SB3.31.3

चतुर्भिर्धातव: सप्त पच्स्च्रभि: श्रुत्तृडुद्भव: |
षड्भिर्जरायुणा वीत: कुक्षो भ्राम्यति दक्षिणो ||४||

caturbhir dhātavaḥ sapta pañcabhiḥ kṣut-tṛḍ-udbhavaḥ  
ṣaḍbhir jarāyuṇā vītaḥ kukṣau bhrāmyati dakṣiṇe

Within four months from the date of conception, the seven essential ingredients of the body, namely chyle, blood, flesh, fat, bone, marrow and semen, come into existence. At the end of five months, hunger and thirst make themselves felt, and at the end of six months, the fetus, enclosed by the amnion, begins to move on the right side of the abdomen. SB3.31.3

उल्बेन संवृतस्तस्मिन्नन्त्रैच्श्र बहिरावृत: | आस्ते कृत्वा शिर: कुक्षो भुग्नपृष्ठशिरोधर: ||८||

ulbena saṁvṛtas tasminn antraiś ca bahir āvṛtaḥ  āste kṛtvā śiraḥ kukṣau bhugna-pṛṣṭha-śirodharaḥ 

Placed within the amnion and covered outside by the intestines, the child remains lying on one side of the abdomen, his head turned towards his belly and his back and neck arched like a bow. SB3.31.8

आरभ्य सप्तमान्मासाल्लब्धबोधोsपि वेपित: |
नैकत्रास्ते सुतिवातैर्विष्ठाभूरिव सोदर: ||१०||
ārabhya saptamān māsāl

labdha-bodho ’pi vepitaḥ  
naikatrāste sūti-vātair viṣṭhā-bhūr iva sodaraḥ 

Thus endowed with the development of consciousness from the seventh month after his conception, the child is tossed downward by the airs that press the embryo during the weeks preceding delivery. Like the worms born of the same filthy abdominal cavity, he cannot remain in one place.SB3.31.10

Now coming to your second question – Does it contradictory with present day biology – No its NOT , the description is fairly correct although not accurate because that is (biology) not the scope of the text see encyclopedia.com -:

The embryonic phase initiates with fertilization, the meeting of the male (sperm) and female (oocyte) gametes,

The embryo then undergoes gastrulation, the process that starts with the formation of the primitive streak.

At the end of the embryonic phase, many important organ systems are in place, at least in rudimentary form. The fetal phase is characterized by further differentiation and maturation of tissues and organs,

By the beginning of the fetal period (eighth week), the rudiments of the heart, blood and blood vessels, the major segments of the skeleton and associated muscle groups, the limbs, and many other structures are in place

This is important to keep in mind when interpreting early movements of the fetus, visualized more and more accurately by ultrasonography. These movements reflect the maturation of local neuromuscular structures

5 weeks Your baby resembles a tadpole more than a human, but is growing fast. The circulatory system is beginning to form, and the tiny heart will start to beat this week.

16 weeks he patterning on your baby's scalp has begun, though the hair isn't visible yet. His legs are more developed – find out when you're likely to feel your baby kick! His head is more upright, and his ears are close to their final position.

28 weeks Your baby's eyesight is developing, which may enable her to sense light filtering in from the outside. She can blink, and her eyelashes have grown in.Here

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