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Origin of Indian Civilization

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Origin of Indian Civilization
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Item Code: NAW006
Author: Bal Ram Singh
Language: English
Edition: 2010
ISBN: 9788124605608
Pages: 302 (14 Colored and 30 B/W Illustrations)
Other Details: 8.50 X 5.50 inch
weight of the book: 0.53 kg
About the Book

India’s civilization has had a long existence that is documented in a huge amount and variety of literature, its scientific advancements over the centuries, its continuing cultural practices and preservation of art and music. This volume comprises papers that explore various , aspects relating to the origin and ancientness of the Indian civilization.

Scholars here present diverse perspectives to delve into the contentions and controversies that surround questions such as the one concerning the origin of the Aryans. The papers examine the events that gave rise to the Aryan invasion theory and debunk the theory as a myth and present evidence and arguments supporting the theory that the Rgveda was composed in its bulk in the fourth millennium BCE. An effort focuses on the problem of identifying the earliest region of the Aryan ecumene or homeland, including that of identifying its epicentre in India. Incorporating the latest research in history, archaeology, philosophy, genetics, and other disciplines, the papers explain the origin and evolution of the idea of the ancient South Asian city. Quoting from the epic literature, they attempt to derive the date of the Mahabharata War on the basis of the numerous astronomical references in the epic. They also analyze patterns of Y-chromosome diversity in the contemporary South Asian gene pool to throw light on migrations of modern humans within South-west Asia.

Accompanied by maps and other illustrations, the volume will interest scholars from a range of disciplines who are keen to study the origin and evolution of Indian civilization and culture.

About the Author

Singh, Bal Ram, is the Director of Center for Indic Studies at UMass Dartmouth, where he teaches a course on Science of Kriyayoga. Dr Singh as a Professor of Biophysical Chemistry and Henry Dreyfus Teacher- Scholar at University of Massachusetts Dartmouth, and the Director of Botulinum Research Center, has been conducting research for 20 years at UMass Dartmouth on the molecular mode of action of botulinum and tetanus neurotoxins, and lately also on yoga, mind, and consciousness. Dr Singh has published about 175 research articles, has edited three books, including India’s Intellectual Traditions and Contributions to the World (DKPW, 2010), and has obtained 3 patents. He has published over three dozen scholarly articles on issues related to Indian tradition, culture, and philosophy. He is Associate Editor of the International Journal of Indian Culture and Business Management. Dr Singh is President of BBTech, Inc., Dartmouth, MA, and Managing Director of BBTech Herbal in India. He is also Manager of a girl’s school, Kuruom Vidyalaya, which he has established in his native village in India.


INDIA is over 5,000 year old civilization, and is considered as the only living ancient civilization in the world. It has had its philosophical and literary influences on many world thinkers and philosophers to include Ralph Waldo Emerson, Henry David Thoreau, Albert Einstein, Erwin Schrodinger, Arthur Schopenhauer, Mark Twain, Will Durant, Martin Luther King, Jr., and Nelson Mandela among them. With current trend of international] migration, business network, global communication, and diasporic community, including presence of over 3 million people of Indian origin in the United States of America, it has become apparent that culture and traditions of India (both ancient and modern) be made available to students, scholars, and public for better understanding of the world.

Furthermore, there is so much incremental interest in India’s traditional practices, such as Yoga, Ayurveda, music, and literature in the Western world, especially in the United States that proper and original information on the diverse culture and philosophies of India is essential to students of world history, sociology, and literature.

Invariably, students and scholars encounter conflicting reports and views on Indian civilization, particularly its origin and current practices. Recently, a controversy arose in California on textbook representation of Hinduism which has serious implications in America and elsewhere for students of Indian origin as well as the general student population. One of the major problems has been very strong scholarship and published work since colonial times, widely carried out by scholars under the influence of British colonialists. Much of that scholarship, particularly related to the Aryan origin of Indian civilization has continued under one pretext or the other.

Today’s multicultural world requires new noncombative ways of preventing and resolving cultural misunderstandings. The California controversy involves the portrayal of India and Indian origins in the California education system as well as in various text books. In response to this, the Center for Indic Studies at UMass Dartmouth organized a symposium to discuss and debate the essence of the issue: whether Indian population of today is the product of Aryan invasion or a continuation of indigenous peoples.

This was the first time in a conference on this topic that included population geneticists such as Dr. Peter Underhill of Stanford University and Dr V.K. Kashyap of National Institute of Biologicals, India, share the stage with prominent international scholars on archeology, history, linguistics, and anthropology to try to resolve the vexed issue of Aryan VS. Indigenous origin of the oldest surviving civilization on earth.

Given the list of speakers and topics being covered, the discussions are going to be hard. I hope we can keep it civilé, commented Dr. Petr Eltsov, of Deutches Archaeologisches Institut, Berlin, Germany. The symposium speakers included Dr B.B. Lal, former director of Archeological Survey of India, and Dr N.S. Rajaram, author of Sarasvati River and the Vedic Civilization (Aditya Prakashan, 2006).

This was first time for scholars in the fields of linguistics, philosophy, history, archeology, physics, mathematics, and genetics, gathered to discuss the single issue of the origin of Indian civilization. The symposium was part of the Fourth Annual Indic Conference organized by the Center for Indic Studies at University of Massachusetts Dartmouth, June 23- 25, 2006.

The topic and timing of the conference was relevant to contemporary conditions. The controversy on California textbooks just provided us an extra impetus to contact scholars in the field to put together a symposium on the topic. | am very grateful for the response of scholars to the symposium. It was not easy to gather scholars of such varying fields, and to keep them in one room for two days trying to make sense to each other. The symposium was attended by many other scholars and interested individuals, including Michael Witzel of Harvard University, and representatives of the Education Society for the Heritage of India.

This book is result of the deliberations at the symposium facilitated by the recordings of the symposium, and chapters submitted by the authors. While not a scholar specializing in the study of civilizations, I am left with the responsibility of collating these contributions to facilitate their reach to interested scholars and students of Indian civilization.

I am grateful to my assistant, Miss Shwetha Bhat, for transcribing a couple of the chapters, and for helping me put together the proceedings. I would also like to thank my administrative assistant, Ms. Maureen Jennings for helping in organizing the Symposium, and to Dr Sitanshu Chakravarti of University of Toronto and Shri Shekhar Shastri of Meru Education Foundation for chairing the sessions of the symposium.

**Contents and Sample Pages**

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