I understand that Hinduism has a rich body of scriptures. I know that Mahabharata and Ramayana are the epics from which ordinary people are entertained and derive values from. And there are the Vedas, Upanishads, etc.

I am more interested in those texts through which, relatively speaking, a greater amount of scientific knowledge were passed down. Do not get me wrong, I am not saying all the other information is not important, but I am very interested in the scientific ones, if any.

I mean, are the scientific facts contained in a specific book/chapter or is it riddled across the texts? How do we go about extracting the facts from fiction?

  • You ask too many questions please limit it to one. There are some scientific facts scattered throughout the scriptures but it is extremely limited. Are you looking for a specific one? – Wikash_ Apr 29 '19 at 14:14
  • On Mathematics and Astronomy? – user17294 Apr 29 '19 at 15:20
  • According to Markandey Katju: "There was no doubt a lot of scientific development in ancient India. For instance, decimal system in mathematics and plastic surgery in medicine among others, but this knowledge is not part of the Vedas. The works of Aryabhatta, Brahmagupta, Bhaskara, Varahamira, Sushruta, Charaka etc. are no doubt in Sanskrit, and they are outstanding works which advanced the frontiers of human knowledge, but they are not part of the Vedas." – sv. Apr 29 '19 at 18:15
  • Also see A Concise History Of Science In India. – sv. Apr 29 '19 at 18:17

You can find many books and texts on scientific theories, procedures, etc but not all are such that they can be understood directly. Sometimes the things are said in metaphors and therefore it's difficult to get whether it has to be taken in a literal sense or scientific sense.

There are many Puranas which contain the story of universe creation so that can be found very easily within many Hinduism SE question and answers. Puranas also explains the beginning of different kind of species. The creation and destruction (flood) etc parts are also present there, where, seeds of different species are preserved so that creation process can start again.

In the case of medicines, there is a book called 'Charak Samhita' written by Maharishi Charak and is based on Ayurveda. It describes the human anatomy, various diseases, their symptoms, and cure, etc.

As per this wikipedia article:

The pre-2nd century CE text consists of eight books and one hundred twenty chapters. It describes ancient theories on human body, etiology, symptomology and therapeutics for a wide range of diseases. The Charaka Samhita also includes sections on the importance of diet, hygiene, prevention, medical education, the teamwork of a physician, nurse and patient necessary for recovery to health.

There is another book called 'Sushruta Samhita' which talks about medicines and surgical practices and procedures.

According to this wikipedia article:

The Sushruta Samhita (सुश्रुतसंहिता, IAST: Suśrutasaṃhitā, literally "Suśruta's Compendium") is an ancient Sanskrit text on medicine and surgery, and one of the most important such treatises on this subject to survive from the ancient world. The Compendium of Suśruta is one of the foundational texts of Ayurveda (Indian traditional medicine), alongside the Caraka-Saṃhitā, the Bheḷa-Saṃhitā, and the medical portions of the Bower Manuscript. It is one of the two foundational Hindu texts on the medical profession that have survived from ancient India.

The Suśrutasaṃhitā is of great historical importance because it includes historically unique chapters describing surgical training, instruments, and procedures.

Apart from this, there is also a book on 'Vaimanika Shastra', ie Aeronautical science.

As per this wikipedia article:

The existence of the text was revealed in 1952 by G. R. Josyer who asserted that it was written by Pandit Subbaraya Shastry (1866–1940), who dictated it during the years 1918–1923. A Hindi translation was published in 1959, while the Sanskrit text with an English translation was published in 1973. It contains 3000 shlokas in 8 chapters which Shastry claimed was psychically delivered to him by the ancient Hindu sage Bharadvaja. The text has gained favour among proponents of ancient astronaut theories.

Although this book was not taken seriously by other people and was criticized for its poor airplane design, still we know that Pushpak Vimaan and other such aircraft/spacecraft existed earlier which could even go to different planets/lokas.

There are several other books also regarding astronomical and space, time and distance calculations, divine weapons and their dynamics, etc also which are also common.


"extracting the facts from fiction?"

I think you should try 'darshan granth' there are six principle systems in hindu philosophy.

  1. sankhya
  2. yoga
  3. nyaya
  4. vaisheshik
  5. mimansa
  6. vedanta

they concentrate more on science and less on fiction and story-telling. for example vaisheshik darshan explains the details about 'padartha' ( element ) and 'paramanu' (atom). every system has one main scripture called sutra granth. like yogasutra, sankhya karika, brahmsutra etc but they will not be so much easy to understand at first. upanishads also contains so much science. most of these science are adhyatmik (for inner wellbieng, exploring self, knowing the existence etc..)

for other specific sciences like ayurveda, vedic maths, yoga, jyotish, tantra, and several other you can search on the internet. indian knoledge is so much vast and scattered, even to summarize it one has to write a book...

sorry for my english if it was bad.


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