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Indus Civilization & Vishnu, Dravidians & Kadavul

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  Quote rakovsky Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Topic: Indus Civilization & Vishnu, Dravidians & Kadavul
    Posted: 10-Oct-2016 at 00:25
The Indus Valley or "Harappan" Civilization is one of the world's most ancient and impressive next to Sumer and Egypt. It lasted until 1500 BC, and had writing, many brick cities, and a water/sewage system that kept it clean.




One of the main uncertainties about it was whether the Aryans had arrived by its height (2500 BC), however the common opinion of scholars is that they arrived at its end, c. 1500 BC. Scholars also most commonly propose that the Harappans spoke Dravidian. The uncertainty over this question is one of the difficulties in deciphering the Harappans' writing. Both those who see a Dravidian language in this culture, as well as those who see an Aryan one do however tend to agree that noticeable traces of the Indus' religion passed into Hinduism. For example, it's often suggested that one of the major gods was a kind of "proto-Shiva", based on a seal resembling a Shiva-Pashupati figure.

This brings us to the main questions of this thread. Can we tell what were key features of the Harappan religion?
Can we make an educated guess whether they believed in some version of Vishnu, a central deity in Hinduism?
Supposing that Harappans were Dravidian, then it may be relevant that the main name in Dravidian for God is "Kadavul". What does Kadavul mean, and does it relate to Vishnu?

First, let me cite two articles that talk about pre-Aryan religion in India. Wikipedia's entry on Dravidian religion says:

Ancient Tamil grammatical works Tolkappiyam, the ten anthologies Pattuppāṭṭu, the eight anthologies Eṭṭuttokai sheds light on early ancient Dravidian religion. Seyyon was glorified as, the red god seated on the blue peacock, who is ever young and resplendent, as the favored god of the Tamils.[13] Sivan was also seen as the supreme God.[13] Early iconography of Seyyon[14] and Sivan[15][16][17] and their association with native flora and fauna goes back to Indus Valley Civilization...

Scholars regard Indian religions as a fusion[7][note 1] or synthesis of various Indian cultures and traditions. Among its roots are the historical Vedic religion of Iron Age India,[51][41] itself already the product of "a composite of the indo-Aryan and Harappan cultures and civilizations", but also the Sramana[54] or renouncer traditions[41] of northeast India,[54] and mesolithic[55] and neolithic[56] cultures of India, such as the religions of the Indus Valley CivilisationDravidian traditions, and the local traditions[41] and tribal religions.

https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Dravidian_folk_religion

Thomas Berry also writes in his book "Religions of India" about pre-Aryan religion:
[Sanskrit records] noted that a prior native tradition existed and had powerfully influenced the total development of Hinduism. ... By Indianization is meant that the non-Aryan native elements gradually modified the Aryan elements and, over the centuries, achieved an ever-larger place in the total pattern of cultural and spiritual interaction.  ... [there was a ] general tendency toward the predominance of the native non-Aryan over the incoming Aryan elements in the creative process that emerged from this meeting.  .... Many of the ideas found [in the Upanishads] that seem to be alien or opposed to the spirit of the Vedic Hymns may be attributed at least in part to the non-Vedic and non-Aryan foundations of India.

In {Indus] sites were discovered engraved seals and statuettes that indicate something of the religious life.... - image worship, veneration of a deity apparently with the characteristics later attributed to Shiva, phallic worship, veneration of animals, Yogic meditation. ... Sometimes this entire complex of Pre-Aryan and non-Aryan elements in Hinduism is referred to as Dravidian.... [Harappans] may have been pre-Dravidian or even non-Dravidian. Certainly however the Dravidians as they are now known have supplied a major part of this native nonAryan influence within Hinduism
He then lists these components or trends within pre-Aryan religion:
World negating attitude,
extreme asceticism,
Puja worship, esp. image worship;
Yoga meditation technqiues

He adds that "there is a strong current of atheism in early Hindu thought, a current that can be clearly identified with the non-Aryan elements of Hinduism." On the other hand, I think that belief in God (Kadavul, or in Sanskrit Ishvara) are more common in Hinduism than Nishvara, A-Theism, belief that there is no God.

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  Quote rakovsky Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 10-Oct-2016 at 09:12
Vishnu, as I understand it, means literally "The All-Residing One", in that he is a god who is resting everywhere. He is considered "the Maintainer" of the universe.

The online etymological dictionary defines his name as coming: "probably from root vish- and meaning "all-pervader" or "worker."" http://www.etymonline.com/index.php?term=Vishnu

Wikipedia says:

Yaska, the mid 1st-millennium BCE Vedanga scholar, in his Nirukta (etymological interpretation), defines Vishnu as viṣṇur viṣvater vā vyaśnoter vā, "one who enters everywhere". He also writes, atha yad viṣito bhavati tad viṣnurbhavati, "that which is free from fetters and bondages is Vishnu".[6]

The medieval Indian scholar Medhātithi suggested that the word Vishnu has etymolgical roots in viś, meaning to pervade, thereby connoting that Vishnu is "one who is everything and inside everything".

https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Vishnu#Etymology

In the sect that focuses most on Vishnu, called "Vaishnavism", he is Svayam Bhagwan, God Himself.

A big obstacle is that Vishnu is a Sanskrit (Indo-European) word, so if we are going to look for a "proto-Vishnu" or a figure of Vishnu in the period before the Indo-European Aryans arrived, we would have to be able to look beyond the Sanskrit name "Vishnu" and try to find such traces in the centuries before, when Harappa was supposedly Dravidian. At face value, it's not impossible for Vishnu to predate the Aryans' arrival, because as Berry wrote, Hinduism (with gods like Vishnu) is a mix that includes pre-Aryan Dravidian elements.

Vasant Shind in his essay "A New Type of Inscribed Copper Plate from Indus Valley (Harappan) Civilisation" wrote about plates with depictions he associates with Vishnu:
"The most unusual of the copper plates are Plates 1 and 2 which depict a figure or deity with a horned head-dress. No seal is known that is overall comparable to Plate 1, which depicts a naked figure, wearing a horned head-dress, seated in a yogic position, and bearing a star or gem symbol on his chest, perhaps antecedent to the jewel Kaustubha worn by Vishnu (S. Chandrasekhar, pers. comm.)."
Here is plate 1:

He adds: "The plant here is a herb with a taproot, long leaves and two flowers. ... Thus the plant depicted may be something like tulasi (Ocimum tenuiflorum), a holy plant often associated with Vishnu (Gupta, 2001; p. 54), a poppy4, or Indian ginseng (Withania somnifera)."
http://www.ancient-asia-journal.com/articles/10.5334/aa.12317/#F10

Swami Nathan connects the famous horned figure on Indus seals to Vishnu:

Vishnu  Sahasra Namam ( 1008 names of Lord Vishnu) describes Lord Vishnu as Maha Sringan (Name 536) meaning the great horned one.  Adi Sankara commenting on this word quotes another name from Rik Veda  4.38.3 and Taitriya Aranyaka 1.10.17 which describe god as ‘Chathwari Sringa: ‘meaning a person with four horns. Name 139 ‘Chathur Dhamstraya’ means four horns or one who with four teeth. Adi Sankara mentions both in his commentary.
In another place in the Sahasranama (1008 names) Vishnu is described as god with more than one horn ( Name 763 ‘Na Eka sringaya ‘meaning not with one horn).

One who looks at the Indus god with horns after reading Kalidasa, Rik Veda and Vishnu Sahasra Nama along with the Tamil saying ‘Nee Enna Periya kombano’ can’t but think of Lord Vishnu.

http://swamiindology.blogspot.com/2011/09/vishnu-seal-in-indus-valley.html

He also comments about how some scholars think that Indus writing uses a fish as a symbol for "god":

Indus Fish symbol and Vishnu
Another interesting coincidence is ‘Vishnu Sahasra nama ‘ describes Vishnu as a Red Colour Fish –‘Rohithaya’ (name 364). More over Lord Vishnu’s first incarnation was a Fish ( Matsya Avatar) and many Indus scholars agree that the Indus fish symbol denotes god.


P.Priyadarshi quotes from the Mahabharata about the unicorn and Vishnu in his essay "Is there any relationship between the Harappan Unicorn, Vedic period ekashringi and a horned Horse?"
"This passage means, the unicorn, the Varaha-avatara  of Vishnu, and thethree headed unicorn are one and the same." This is significant because unicorn seals have been found at Indus sites.
https://www.scribd.com/doc/125678070/Identification-of-the-Vedic-Ekashringi-and-the-Harappa-Unicorn

What do you think?
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  Quote Aeoli Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 10-Oct-2016 at 14:47
 Dravidians or Harappa which one is oldest and is there any clear connection with Horn of Africa?
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  Quote rakovsky Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 10-Oct-2016 at 22:27
Originally posted by Aeoli

 Dravidians or Harappa which one is oldest and is there any clear connection with Horn of Africa?

Yes.
Harappa/"Indus Valley" is the civilization that reached its height in 3500-1900 BC, but may go back to villages with farming and small cities over the period of 10,000 - 1500 BC.
Dravidians are a family of tribes and languages across India and Pakistan who scholars believe lived there before the aryan arrival and before Harappa.
Harappa traded with Egypt, the horn of Africa, and Sumer, probably. Dravidians and Harappans' ancestors came from East Africa at some point.
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  Quote Aeoli Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 11-Oct-2016 at 12:49
Originally posted by rakovsky


Harappa traded with Egypt, the horn of Africa, and Sumer, probably. Dravidians and Harappans' ancestors came from East Africa at some point.

Can you give an example cultures which can be ancester of these indian cultures? 
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  Quote rakovsky Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 11-Oct-2016 at 15:00
Originally posted by Aeoli

Originally posted by rakovsky


Harappa traded with Egypt, the horn of Africa, and Sumer, probably. Dravidians and Harappans' ancestors came from East Africa at some point.

Can you give an example cultures which can be ancester of these indian cultures? 

Dravidian is already a prehistoric ancestor of Harappan culture. So now you are asking what is the ancestor of prehistoric Dravidians.

I think that the Afroasiatic languages, as well as maybe Elamite, Sumerian (Iraq), and the Austroloid aboriginals of India could be these kinds of predecessors to Dravidians.

One common theory goes that the Dravidians settled in the harappan city of Mehrgarh in North Pakistan, and that they came from the region of Elam in Persia/Iran. This would have happened in maybe 8000 BC.

Here is a map:
http://3.bp.blogspot.com/-GGLUiIqi3Pc/VDYvSj2W0MI/AAAAAAAAHM4/AnLSrHvajJ0/s1600/Geno%2BProject%2BHuman%2BMigration%2B%2B2.jpg
You can focus your eyes on the space labeled Dravidian and see how they came from Iran based on the arrow.

You can read about Prehistoric Iran here:
https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/History_of_Iran#Paleolithic
That is the place where the Dravidians would have come from.

It says:
Early agricultural communities such as Chogha Golan in 10,000 BC[19][20] along with settlements such as Chogha Bonut (the earliest village in Elam) in 8000 BC,[21][22] began to flourish in and around the Zagros Mountains region in western Iran.[23] Around about the same time, the earliest-known clay vessels and modeled human and animal terracotta figurines were produced at Ganj Dareh, also in western Iran.[23] There are also 10,000-year-old human and animal figurines from Tepe Sarab in Kermanshah Province among many other ancient artifacts.[16]

The south-western part of Iran was part of the Fertile Crescent where most of humanity's first major crops were grown, in villages such as Susa (where a settlement was first founded possibly as early as 4395 cal BC)[24] and settlements such as Chogha Mish, dating back to 6800 BC;[1][25] there are 7,000-year-old jars of wine excavated in the Zagros Mountains[26] (now on display at the University of Pennsylvania) and ruins of 7000-year-old settlements such as Tepe Sialk are further testament to that. The two main Neolithic Iranian settlements were the Zayandeh River Culture and Ganj Dareh.


Aeoli:
I recommend this free BBC movie about ancient India for you:

BBC The Story of India - Episode 1 - Beginnings


https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=MZVVFSiSl1s




Edited by rakovsky - 11-Oct-2016 at 15:03
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  Quote cschetna Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 12-Nov-2016 at 04:40

The people those who were living in the Indus Valley Civilization (IVC) were taking beef, pork, poultry, mutton, poultry, turtles and tortoises as their special food which they usually like to eat. Wheat was considered as the main meal in their food. Barley and palm-date were considered as the common eatable food for them. Fish were commonly used in there day to day life and vegetables and fruits are also used but there were the no sign of evidence of that.
my incredible india
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  Quote Sander Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 25-Jun-2017 at 17:14

A few comments: 

That the IVC people spoke Dravidian is often suggested but at best, this is a possibility. It could have been another language (Elamite, Austro-Asiatic or else). We simply don't know.


In fact, we may never know. There are strong indications that the IVC script is not a writing system, a system that encodes speech/language (Farmer et al. 2004). 

Originally posted by rakovsky


Vasant Shind in his essay "A New Type of Inscribed Copper Plate from Indus Valley (Harappan) Civilisation" wrote about plates with depictions he associates with Vishnu:
"The most unusual of the copper plates are Plates 1 and 2 which depict a figure or deity with a horned head-dress. No seal is known that is overall comparable to Plate 1, which depicts a naked figure, wearing a horned head-dress, seated in a yogic position, and bearing a star or gem symbol on his chest, perhaps antecedent to the jewel Kaustubha worn by Vishnu (S. Chandrasekhar, pers. comm.)."
Here is plate 1:

.......

There are authentic IVC copper plates but the above one is not one of them.  The archaeological surveys of India and Pakistan don't know it (as an excavated object). The authors of the paper (Shinde and Willis: 2014) who promote  this object, claim it came from an unidentified private collection (anonymous owner). Anyone who reads the paper will notice that the described testing of the object has actually nothing to do with dating.

Not excavated does not automatically make it inauthentic but at least the alleged antiquity of this metal object could have been demonstrated by dating tests. That is not the case: no carbondating of associated material/objects; no metallurgical dating tests (thermoluminiscence or else). 
 
To put it bluntly: there is no evidence it's even a few 100 years old, let alone 4000 +! It's also remarkable that the object can only be seen outside Asia (in Australia). 

Steve Farmer and others discuss the item (calling it one of the worst products of the lucrative fake Indus artefacts industry) here: 




References: 

Farmer, Steve et al. (2004) The Collapse of the Indus-Script Thesis: The Myth of a Literate Harappan Civilization, Electronic Journal of Vedic Studies (EJVS), vol. 11 (2004), issue 2 (Dec) 

Shinde, V. & Willis, R.J., (2014). A New Type of Inscribed Copper Plate from Indus Valley (Harappan) Civilisation. Ancient Asia. 5, p.Art. 1. DOI: http://doi.org/10.5334/aa.12317


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Edited by Sander - 25-Jun-2017 at 21:31
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  Quote medenaywe Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 29-Jun-2017 at 12:19
What is the oldest document(original)that mentions those names,India&Pakistan?
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  Quote Sander Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 03-Jul-2017 at 10:31
Originally posted by medenaywe

What is the oldest document(original)that mentions those names,India&Pakistan?

The forms Indos and India are Greek forms, taken over by the Romans and others.  Not sure in which Greek document they appeared first. Some sources claim that they appeared first in the 5th century B.C. works of Hekataios and Herodotos but other sources claim that the name appeared first in a play ´the Suppliants´ by Aeschylus,  composed c.492 BC ( see reference, page 209)

The usual explanation is that the name India derives (ultimately) from the name Sindhu, the Sindhu river in Pakistan (the Indus river in western languages). Sindhu became Hindu in Persian languages. In the beginning it only refered to the river, later on to the lands around and beyond the river. Before the mid 20th century Europeans and Arabs used it in a wider sense, a generic name for both South Asia and Southeast Asia (British India, Dutch India aka Dutch Indies).  

References

M. L. Varad Pande,Manohar Laxman Varadpande (1987). History of Indian Theatre, Volume 1.


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Edited by Sander - 03-Jul-2017 at 18:47
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  Quote medenaywe Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 04-Jul-2017 at 02:40
All names are just different sentences that speaks about Sanctification-ustrojstvo=organisation =structure=constitution-civilization and how did they make it in India,with first=primal-superior-supreme sacrifice-devotion =dedication-humanism. Hindu,sentence speaks about something else.Will write it in Origins.
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  Quote medenaywe Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 04-Jul-2017 at 05:35
...and signs on plates reminds me on Demoticos signs.A lot of them.
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