Thought Habitat’s first ever offline book discussion event at Centre of Excellence – Art & Culture, Shasun Jain College for Women in Chennai on 09 April 2022. Sabareesh PA, author of A Brief History of Science in Ancient India spoke about some key aspects of his book. Some of those aspects that emphasizes on India’s rich knowledge base.
Published by Garuda Prakashan, this book highlights India’s continued achievements in various fields. Some of them being, science, technology, engineering and philosophy. Moreover, the book depicts how science and society survived on a civilizational perspective in India.
Here are some excerpts from the author’s key note address
Sanskrit has a Scientific Foundation & has Evolved but not Changed
Talking about the evolution of languages, Sabareesh mentioned that sanskrit as a language has evolved. However, he differentiates its evolution with the term – change. He further explained that languages like Tamil has seen a major shift in terms of vocabulary.
In the current times, one might not understand the sangam era Tamil. However, the author claims that Panini, the renowned Sanskrit Grammarian gave a scientific foundation. And, the foundation was algebraic in nature for it to evolve.
Rocket based Warfare thrived during the Vijayanagara Period
The author exclaims rockets were a part of the Vijayanagara army. Battle of Talikota in 1563 against the mughals records a rocket based warfare event. According to historical evidence, frightening of Elephants and Horses was becoming a common phenomenon in the battleground. He went on to say that Marathas and even Mughals began adopting rocket based warfare in wars over the years.
Rhinoplasty & Cosmetic Medical Surgeries in Ancient India
Rhinoplasty surgery performed on Cowasjee in 1794 by a surgeon in Poona is a classic example, the author said. He further explains that Gentleman’s Magazine in London published a feature with the title – A Singular Operation.
According to historical records, this surgery is an inspiration from Sushrutasamhita, the book of Surgery in Ayurveda. He also explains that in ancient records, one may also find surgeries to improve deformed ears and noses. Also, surgeons performing rhinoplasty and other cosmetic surgeries with precision blades.
A Thought Provoking Session with Active Interaction
The event witnessed students from the college as well as research scholars and book enthusiasts from various parts of the city. Ms Sujatha Rao, an active social worker in the city graced the occasion and urged the younger generation to read the work of authors like Sabareesh PA.