The Sun, The Moon, Distances, and The Universal Arrangement

How is it that the statements of the Vedic Scriptures in the matter of dimensions of the sun, moon, and the distances between them don’t match with the modern scientific theories?

Partha Das, 28 October 2019

Hare Krsna, Dandavats,

Could you throw some light on the shloka from the 5th canto of Bhagavatam 5.25.2.

The sun globe, which is a source of heat, extends for 10,000 yojanas [80,000 miles]. The moon extends for 20,000 yojanas [160,000 miles], and Rāhu extends for 30,000 yojanas [240,000 miles].

Thanks

Partha Das

Subodh, 29 October 2019

Cosmic and materials knowledge can only affirmed the belief of Krishna’s expansion but can’t get rid of from birth and death cycles, without yug mantras given by mahaprabhu, hence chant hare krishna simply be happy, 

Subodh

Partha Das, 29 October 2019

Very true Prabhuji. But a foundation made of solid knowledge will make us very good devotees of the Lord

Partha Das

Manoj Tripathi, 29th October 2019

Hare Krishna Partha Prabhu.

All glories to Srila Prabhupada,

All glories to Guru Maharaja.

The verse number is 5.24.2

Here, Śrī Śukadeva Gosvāmī is talking about the sizes of Sun, Moon, and Rahu. Before this verse, he talked about the distance of Rahu from the Sun. 

To adherents of modern science, it may all sound very confusing, or even laughable. However, it should be noted that the Jyotisha Shastras deal with planetary orbits and sizes, and they have been predicting eclipses, seasons etc. very well [1]. Modern measurements on size of the planets and distances (including Sun and moon!) match well with the data given in Surya Siddhanta [2]. Bhagavatam’s picture of the universe may seem to contradict Jyotisha Shastras at some points; however, a detailed study would reveal that everything is in order. And Srila Prabhupada wanted his PhDs to go through these details and construct a model of the universe presented in Bhagavatam and display it in Mayapur [3].   

[1] http://richardlthompson.com/book/vedic-cosmography-and-astronomy

[2] https://vedabase.io/en/library/cc/adi/3/8/

[3] https://vanisource.org/w/index.php?title=760427_-_Letter_to_Svarupa_Damodara_written_from_Auckland&t=hl#terms=Ph.D

Manoj Tripathi

Mahabhagavat Das SDA, 30 October 2019

Dear Sriman Partha,

Please accept my humble obeisances.

All glories to Srila Gurudeva.

All glories to Srila Prabhupada.

All gratitude to all the group members for participating in this worldwide group…

Srimad Bhagavatam is Amala Purana, the spotless Purana, is the literary incarnation of Krishna Himself. Everything mentioned in the Srimad Bhagavatam is the Supreme Absolute Truth, even if we may struggle to understand how. Verses and purports that I read in the Bhagavatam say ten years ago sometimes make sense to me now, after all the additional context, or in a class, or somehow by Guru’s and Krishna’s mercy.

What is your actual concern with SB 5.25.2?

ŚB 5.25.2

yasyedaṁ kṣiti-maṇḍalaṁ bhagavato ’nanta-mūrteḥ sahasra-śirasa ekasminn eva śīrṣaṇi dhriyamāṇaṁ siddhārtha iva lakṣyate.

yasyedaṁ kṣiti-maṇḍalaṁ bhagavato ’nanta-mūrteḥ sahasra-śirasa ekasminn eva śīrṣaṇi dhriyamāṇaṁ siddhārtha iva lakṣyate.

Śukadeva Gosvāmī continued: This great universe, situated on one of Lord Anantadeva’s thousands of hoods, appears just like a white mustard seed. It is infinitesimal compared to the hood of Lord Ananta.

There is no purport.

Did you mean some other statement?

Mahabhagavat Das

Partha Das, 31 October 2019

Hare Krsna, Dandavats,

Apologies for mentioning the wrong shloka number.

The correct shloka is 5.24.2

The sun globe, which is a source of heat, extends for 10,000 yojanas [80,000 miles]. The moon extends for 20,000 yojanas [160,000 miles], and Rāhu extends for 30,000 yojanas [240,000 miles].

your Servant

Partha Das

Mahabhagavat Das SDA, 12 November 2019

Dear Sriman Partha,

Hare Krishna!

Yes, as I stated before, the Srimad Bhagavatam is spotless, faultless. Everything mentioned in the Bhagavatam is the Supreme Absolute Truth. We may not be able to understand it, just as sometimes ordinary people cannot understand the words of a great genius…That being known, what exactly is your question?

Sincerely,

Mahabhagavat Das

Partha Das, 12 November 2019

Hare Krsna,

My question is that the shloka is not clear wrt what we learned in school about the sizes of these planets and the distance between them.

Dandavats

Partha Das

Mahabhagavat Das SDA, 13 November 2019

Dear Sriman Partha,

Hare Krishna!

Yes, there are 2 ways of receiving knowledge – one is called the “arohapanthi” or the “ascending process”. The other is called “avarohapanthi” or “descending process”. The material scientists follow the ascending process (base one fact upon another that is proven), we follow the descending process. Our process is that there is the Creator and we get all our information from Him. In theory, both processes should reach the same conclusions, but in the ascending process, there are a lot of pitfalls, mistakes, etc., and the ascending process cannot discover information that is spiritual in nature.

It is important not to position the scripture and material science as competitors… Chaitanya Charan Prabhu makes that clear that both deal with different subject matters and have totally different perspectives, and he goes on to show how both are correct.

Here is an example from Chaitanya Charan Prabhu… if you mix charcoal powder with white chalk powder, you get a grey substance. Everyone can see that it is a grey substance. But when you look at the powder under the microscope there is no grey substance to be found, it is either white particles or black particles, no grey. The person looking with the naked eye says grey, the person with the microscope says black and white, and both argue – but both are right. He has numerous examples where the scripture and material science say different things but both are correct…

There is also a BBT book called “The Scientific Basis of Krishna Consciousness” by Bhakti Swarup Damodar Maharaja who was also a scientist before he took Sannyas and even after that he founded the Bhaktivedanta Institute. That book is a must-read for anyone who is interested in these sorts of subjects.

The structure of the Universe is vast, but still material, and yes, the ascending process could possibly discover the entire material truth, but it may take a long time, if at all.

Our mundane material textbooks are presently based on a big fat lie – that this Universe came from nothing. The Big Bang theory is just a theory with no conclusive evidence to support it, it is a fairy tale. Something cannot come from nothing, not even one little electron, or one nanometer of space can be created from nothing. So, the fact that we learned that in our textbooks means that the knowledge we studied there is imperfect.

When I was in school and university, I saw that with Maths and Physics, one little mistake in a proof or derivation can lead us to the wrong conclusion… in those cases, my mistakes were caught by my more expert classmates, seniors, or teachers. But in the realm of theoretical physics, as the field gets more and more specialized and sub-specialized, the reviewer pool gets very very small, to the extent that on a certain topic maybe 3 people in the world understand enough to be able to review the papers. Then, what those three people do is, collude and write papers that they each other review and approve – thus getting tenures and grants from various agencies. No one else can possibly know that they are making a mistake – the fields are too arcane. This was revealed to Srila Gurudeva when he was spreading Krishna consciousness in a small University town in America by a Post-doc researcher who was coming to the temple. I have also met many researchers who said the same thing… basically it is a closed club where nepotism and corruption exists. Sometimes the researcher does research and publishes it knowing it to be wrong, and then the following year, they just publish another paper saying they were wrong.

Our mundane material textbooks are consequently revised many times… this is true of medical texts, and many other fields of material knowledge.

But the Vedic scriptures are coming from Krishna, perfect, constant, not revised, no additions or subtractions, no errata, no addenda.

With regard to astronomy and so on, one of the disciples of Srila Prabhupada, Sadaputa Dasa (Richard Thompson) (who passed away recently) has written many books that help to understand the Vedic astronomy better. And also, the Temple of the Vedic Planetariaum being built in Mayapur will help with that. Also, books and writings by Drutakarma Prabhu (Michael Cremo) are helpful.

For example, Sadaputa Prabhu said that the “islands of earth” mentioned in the Bhagavatam are different planet in the earthly system of planets… and that the “flatness of the earth” describes “planetary rings”… To be honest the writings are so intricate that I didn’t invest my time and effort into understanding them.

Until then, we say what we need to say to pass exams, get jobs, etc., and it is also possible we don’t fully understand how the Bhagavatam could be correct. But, after reflecting on all these types of questions which I also had many of, I can decide how important this is to our spiritual progress to know the distance of the sun and moon etc.

Does this help?

Sincerely,

Mahabhagavat Das

Sundar Gopal Das, 13 November 2019

Dear Bhakta Partha,

In addition to the wonderful reflection by HG Mahabhagavat Prabhuji, you can hear the answer from HG Chaitanya Charan Prabhuji by clicking the following link:

With regards,

Sundar Gopal Das 

Partha Das, 13 November 2019

Yes Prabhuji. I guess Krsna will keep on revealing more things to us, as we progress in Krsna consciousness.

Thanks

Partha Das

Jayakrishna, 25 November 2019

Hare Krishna!

I think The following conversation is really addressing this question

“Dr. Singh. Because the scientists haven’t detected any water on the surface of the moon, they’ve concluded that no life could survive there.

Śrīla Prabhupāda. They haven’t seen the whole surface of the moon. Suppose someone were to come here from another planet, drop into the Arabian Desert and then return home. Could he come to a complete conclusion about the nature of the whole earth? His knowledge would not be complete”

(The First Morning Walk: April 18, 1973)

It is only recently the science  proved the presence of water in moon surface!! 

With humble obeisances,

Jayakrishna Ramanuja dasa

Partha Das, 26 November 2019

Yes. It seems scientists keep changing their statements too often. Difficult to believe their theories like big bang , Darwin theory etc.

Partha Das

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Devout Atheists

Does the phrase “Devout Atheist” sound strange to you? Do you know it takes a lot more faith and dogma to believe in atheism? Why do spiritualists bother with atheists?

Sounds strange? Using those words together? But a good friend, Aaron Joy, wrote that to me in an email, and the phrase startled me, and yet rang true!

He described how his parents were devout atheists!

To be an atheist requires a tremendous amount of blind faith.

Here’s the dogma. Once upon a time, no, wait, before time existed, or space or anything else, there was this big explosion that came out of nothing. The explosion happened for no reason whatsoever. And out of that explosion that came out of nothingness, this beautiful ordered well-designed universe showed up. All the planets in their intricate dance, all the stars and galaxies in their beautiful symmetric beauty were accidentally created. All the species with their well-designed abilities appeared by some carefully selected but random manner. All the seasons, the mountains, the rivers, the oceans, the beautiful sunrises and sunsets, they all just are an accident.

All the poetry in the world, the beauty of relationships, everything we cherish is no more significant than random electro-chemical flickering, noise in which we accidentally see any meaning.

Indeed, to be an atheist requires so much strength of belief. Despite evidence to the contrary that nothingness does not exist, that randomness is a myth, they stubbornly cling on to their concocted imaginations. Despite not even a shred of evidence that anything can come out of nothing, they continue to believe in the fairy tale of the big bang! My spiritual master Sankarshan Das Adhikari wrote about the hoax that is the BIg Bang Theory.

Bhakti Charu Swami said it very well. Once he was in Hyderabad, India, looking for a studio to make a movie on the life of Srila Prabhupada, the greatest spiritual leader the world has seen in modern times. He was speaking to the owner of one famous film studio. When the subject of the film was discussed, the owner arrogantly boasted that he was an atheist, by way of challenge.

Bhakti Charu Swami Maharaja calmly replied – if there is a blind man who cannot see the beautiful sun, what will you do? You will pity him. Similarly, we pity the atheists that they don’t see beautiful Krishna. And Maharaja took his valuable business elsewhere.

It is one thing to feel pity for someone who cannot see the sun, but what would you feel for the fool who refuses to open his eyes and look at the sun, instead claiming that the sun does not exist? So sometimes we use strong words, we call them fools and we call them rascals, we call them idiots.

We bear no ill will towards anyone. We are just like the surgeon cuts open the body of a diseased person to heal them and an oncologist (doctor who tries to treat cancer) gives poison (chemotherapy) to heal a person suffering from cancer. We bear only compassion. We know that it may not be well-received.

Radhanath Swami Maharaja tells the story of a saintly man who once saw a scorpion drowning. He immediately put his hand in the water and fished it out. The scorpion stung him and fell back into the water. He picked the scorpion up again, and got stung again. This happened several times before the scorpion was on dry land.

When asked about this, the saintly soul replied, “it is the scorpion’s nature to sting, and mine to serve”. So, we are simply trying to serve the poor deluded atheists.

I was once an atheist myself. I was saved by my all these spiritualists, and I even stung many who were trying to save me. But I am saved now, in spiritual consciousness, Krishna consciousness. If I can be saved, anyone can be saved.

Life after life, I pray to pay it forward and reconnect the lost souls to Sri Krishna, the loving, anxious Father, who ever beckons. What’s a few little stings in return for the privilege of taking one soul back home to Godhead?

Guard of Honour

When a dignitary, such as a Prime Minister or President of a foreign nation visits, it is customary to offer them a “Guard of Honour”, a formation of military personnel in their ceremonial regalia, offering honour in the form of a salute or other such rituals meant to receive, with respect, the visiting dignitary.

The visitor, along with a suitable equal from the host country, reviews the Guard of Honour, and accepts their offerings of respects.

Just as no entity exists without a controller, whether it be a court, a corporation, or a government, and no machine operates without an operator, this Universal arrangement also has such an overseer.

Explosions don’t create order, and if they do, don’t show me a theoretical equation full of assumptions. I’d need to see something tangible, like this Universe, a nice house built with the construction mechanism of a random explosion that no one designed or set off. Innocent children can believe that a machine can operate “magically” or “by accident” or even in “random chance”, but as they grow up, they realize there is a mechanism, and someone made that mechanism, and it has been designed to operate in a certain way according to the designer and operator.

In this Universe, when the Supreme Controller appears, a similar guard of honour is offered by the presiding officials of various planets and planetary systems. This Universal Controller visits different Universes on His schedule.

In the Bhagavad-gītā the Lord says that His appearance, birth and activities are all transcendental and that one who understands them factually becomes immediately eligible to be transferred to the spiritual world. The Lord’s appearance or birth is not like that of an ordinary man, who is forced to accept a material body according to his past deeds. The Lord’s appearance is explained in the Second Chapter: He appears out of His own sweet pleasure. When the time was mature for the appearance of the Lord, the constellations became very auspicious. The astrological influence of the star known as Rohiṇī was predominant. This star is considered to be very auspicious and is under the direct supervision of Brahmā. According to the astrological conclusion, besides the proper situation of the stars, there are auspicious and inauspicious moments due to the different situations of the different planetary systems. At the time of Kṛṣṇa’s birth, the planetary systems were automatically adjusted so that everything became auspicious.

At that time, in all directions—east, west, south, north, everywhere—there was an atmosphere of peace and prosperity. There were auspicious stars visible in the sky, and on the surface in all towns and villages and pasturing grounds and within the minds of everyone there were signs of good fortune. The rivers were flowing full of waters, and lakes were beautifully decorated with lotus flowers. The forests were full with beautiful birds and peacocks. All the birds within the forests began to sing with sweet voices, and the peacocks began to dance along with their consorts. The wind blew very pleasantly, carrying the aroma of different flowers, and the sensation of bodily touch was very pleasing. At home, the brāhmaṇas, who were accustomed to offering sacrifices in the fire, found their homes very pleasant for offerings. Due to disturbances created by the demoniac kings, the sacrificial fire had been almost stopped in the houses of brāhmaṇas, but now they could find the opportunity to start the fire peacefully. Being forbidden to offer sacrifices, the brāhmaṇas had been very much distressed in mind, intelligence and activities, but just on the point of Kṛṣṇa’s appearance, automatically their minds became full of joy because they could hear transcendental vibrations in the sky proclaiming the appearance of the Supreme Personality of Godhead. https://www.vedabase.com/en/kb/3

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