Sciences and Traditional Knowledge of Ancient India

Spirituality is indeed the master-key of the Indian mind, says Sri Aurobindo. But as he also reminds us, spirituality does not flourish in the void, it needs a solid base of a richly lived intellectual and vital life. When we look objectively at the past of India, we are in awe of her stupendous vitality, her inexhaustible power of life and joy of life, her prolific creativeness. India’s mighty intellectual and creative prowess and accomplishments have also been many-sided, leaving no domain of human activity.

The abundant contributions our ancients left behind in the fields of philosophy, astronomy, natural sciences, mathematics, technology, medicine, literature, architecture, engineering and arts are matchless in the history of world civilizations. In addition, there are ample records of the ancients’ advanced social-political thought which led to the formation of great republics, kingdoms and empires. We find evidences of all kinds of monuments, palaces, temples and public works, communities, societies and religious orders, laws, codes and rituals, physical sciences, psychic sciences, systems of Yoga, systems of politics and administration, arts spiritual, arts worldly, trades, industries, fine crafts, — the list is endless, and in each area, there is a plethora of activity.

In this lecture, the speaker, Dr. Sharanya Reddy highlights some of the key contributions made by our ancients in the areas of Metallurgy, Mathematics, and Ayurveda.

This lecture by Dr. Sharanya Reddy was recorded on May 16, 2020.

Watch the recorded lecture:



About the speaker:

Sharanya Reddy did her PhD training in Biochemistry/Analytical Chemistry at the University of South Carolina, Columbia, where she studied glycation reactions with proteins relevant to aging and diabetes. She then did her postdoctoral work at the University of California, Davis after which she worked in industry in the Boston/New York area leading a team of scientists working on high end analytical instrumentation used for research.  She has published many highly referenced publications in top peer reviewed journals in her field.  

She moved back to India a few years ago to settle down in Pondicherry after having lived in the US for nearly 2 decades. She currently works as a consulting scientist for global corporations and travels for work.  She often volunteers her time at local schools in activities that help popularize science with activity-based teaching for middle schoolers, but with an emphasis on the Indian history of science. When teaching modern science she tries to also incorporate ancient Indian science and Mathematics in the topics so children can see some of the incredible discoveries made by the ancients. 

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Renaissance, the monthly e-journal of AuroBharati, features inspiring articles, essays, book reviews or book excerpts, interviews, reflections and artworks that speak of how the eternal spirit and creative genius of India are being reborn and renewed in various domains – spiritual, artistic, literary, philosophic, scientific, aesthetic.

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