The horrific events of 9/11 continue to shape the world we live in, even after 18 years these memories haunts many families in America and around the world.
On September 11, 1893, Vivekananda delivered his famous speech at the parliament of religions. This was the original 9/11 in America that gave a message of peace and tolerance for the world.
Eighteen years ago on this day, nearly 3,000 people were killed and more than 6,000 injured in the 9/11 terror attacks that targeted one of the most secured cities in the most powerful country — the United States of America.
The image of 9/11 as a singular event in modern world history is such that it changed the narrative and approach of world powers towards terrorism.
From being relegated as local occurrences, terrorism became a global phenomenon in the post-9/11 analysis of security and terrorism. For the sake of nuance, ‘glocal’ (something that is affected both by local and global factors) became a more oft-used term in terrorism-related discourses.
One-hundred-and-eight years before 19 al Qaeda terrorists wreaked havoc in America, 9/11 denoted a message of tolerance, peace and tolerance.
The message was delivered by Vivekananda at the parliament of religions in Chicago in 1893 — on September 11. This was the original 9/11.
While it is not yet indisputably established why 9/11 terror attacks were carried out by al Qaeda, it definitely had the imprint of religious bigotry based on fundamentalism. In his Chicago speech, Vivekananda had warned of the dangers of fanaticism.
Universal Brotherhood Day is observed on 11 September around the world each year to commemorate the historic speech delivered by Indian thinker and spiritualist Swami Vivekananda on this day in 1893 in Chicago.
Vivekananda’s iconic speech was made in the audience of delegates from all over the world at the first ever World Parliament of Religions, held from 11 to 27 September 1893.
The speech is popularly remembered for its opening words, “Sisters and brothers of America, which was a departure from the conventional usage of more formal salutations, and for which he received a two-minutes-long standing ovation. In fact, Vivekananda’s address was most likely the first time a global audience was greeted by the use of a more filial term.
He discarded the idea of religious supremacy and propagated a message of not only mutual tolerance but also religious acceptance, while critically defining both and differentiating between the two as well.Speaking about Hinduism he said, “I am proud to belong to a religion which has taught the world both, tolerance and universal acceptance.
We believe not only in universal tolerance but we accept all religions as true.”On the idea of tolerance, Vivekananda explained that it is the act of putting up with something that one disapproves of, while acceptance he said was admitting that even the seed of an idea can take root and produce an offshoot that was completely different and unique from the original ideology.
Swami Vivekananda’s speech is considered to be a turning point for the World Parliament of Religions, as it made the concept of tolerance and acceptance towards other religions more comprehensive and real.
The full speech of Swami Vivekananda as follows
“Sisters and Brothers of America,
It fills my heart with joy unspeakable to rise in response to the warm and cordial welcome which you have given us. I thank you in the name of the most ancient order of monks in the world; I thank you in the name of the mother of religions; and I thank you in the name of the millions and millions of Hindu people of all classes and sects.My thanks, also, to some of the speakers on this platform who, referring to the delegates from the Orient, have told you that these men from far-off nations may well claim the honour of bearing to different lands the idea of toleration.
I am proud to belong to a religion which has taught the world both tolerance and universal acceptance.We believe not only in universal toleration, but we accept all religions as true. I am proud to belong to a nation which has sheltered the persecuted and the refugees of all religions and all nations of the earth.
I am proud to tell you that we have gathered in our bosom the purest remnant of the Israelites, who came to southern India and took refuge with us in the very year in which their holy temple was shattered to pieces by Roman tyranny.I am proud to belong to the religion which has sheltered and is still fostering the remnant of the grand Zoroastrian nation.
I will quote to you, brethren, a few lines from a hymn which I remember to have repeated from my earliest boyhood, which is every day repeated by millions of human beings: ‘As the different streams having their sources in different places all mingle their water in the sea, so, O Lord, the different paths which men take through different tendencies, various though they appear, crooked or straight, all lead to Thee.
‘The present convention, which is one of the most august assemblies ever held, is in itself a vindication, a declaration to the world, of the wonderful doctrine preached in the Gita: ‘Whosoever comes to Me, through whatsoever form, I reach him; all men are struggling through paths which in the end lead to Me.’Sectarianism, bigotry, and its horrible descendant, fanaticism, have long possessed this beautiful earth.
They have filled the earth with violence, drenched it often and often with human blood, destroyed civilization, and sent whole nations to despair.Had it not been for these horrible demons, human society would be far more advanced than it is now.
But their time is come; and I fervently hope that the bell that tolled this morning in honour of this convention may be the death-knell of all fanaticism, of all persecutions with the sword or with the pen, and of all uncharitable feelings between persons wending their way to the same goal.”
On September 11, 2001, a group of al-Qaeda terrorists hijacked four airliners.
Two planes – American Airlines Flight 11 and United Airlines Flight 75 – crashed into the North and South towers of the World Trade Centercomplex in New York City.
Another was flown into the Pentagon in Washington DC and the fourth crashed into a field in Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania after a struggle between the hijackers and passengers.
The National September 11 Memorial & Museum is at the original World Trade Centre site.
The memorial features two huge, deep pools at the base of the old World Trade Centre towers.Around the edges of the pools, each almost an acre in size, the names of those who were killed in the attacks are embossed in bronze panels.
It includes the names of 2,996 people killed by al-Qaeda in New York, the Pentagon and in Pennsylvania.
This article explains the war of currents which have had a great impact over the entire human civilization. It expose the truth and the struggle of the man, Tesla who sacrificed his entire life for the technology and the benefit of humanity. Second part will discuss about The Mystery of Nikola Tesla’s Missing Files.
Nikola Tesla and Thomas Edison are two giants of electrical engineering whose inventions changed history. But the electricity between the two is no secret to the world.
Nikola Tesla contributed to the development of the alternating-current (AC) electrical system which is widely used today and to the rotating magnetic field, which is the basis of most AC machinery.
Born on July 10, 1856, Nikola Tesla went to the United States in 1884 and briefly worked with Thomas Edison before the two parted ways.
Edison, the iconic inventor of the light bulb, the phonograph and the moving picture and Tesla, whose inventions have enabled modern-day power and mass communication systems, waged a ‘War of Currents’ in the 1880s over whose electrical system would power the world. Edison’s direct-current (DC) electric power or Tesla’s alternating-current (AC) system.
A brief history of Nikola Tesla and Thomas Edison
In 1884 Tesla arrived in the United States with little other than the clothes on him and a letter of introduction to the famed inventor and business tycoon Thomas Edison. Edison’s DC-electrical works were fast becoming the country standard. Edison hired Tesla and the two were soon working vigorously alongside each other, making improvements in Edison’s inventions.
However, several months later, Tesla and Edison parted ways because of a conflicting business-scientific relationship, which historians attributed to their incredibly different personalities. While Edison was a power figure who focused on marketing and financial success, Tesla was not business minded and was somewhat vulnerable.
After parting ways with Edison in 1885, Tesla received funding for the Tesla Electric Light Company. His task, as given by his investors, was to develop improved arc lighting. After successful completion of the project, Tesla was forced out of venture and for a time had to work as a manual labourer in order to survive.
His luck changed in 1887 when he gained public interest in his AC electrical system and funding for his new Tesla Electric Company. By the end of the year Tesla had successfully filed several patents for his AC-based inventions.
Here’s how the two rivaling inventors stack up:
Tesla had an eidetic memory. He could very precisely recall images and objects, which enabled him to accurately visualize intricate 3D objects and therefore, he could build working prototypes using few preliminary drawings.
In contrast, Edison was more of a sketcher and a repairer.
In the end, Edison held 1,093 patents and Tesla held less than 300 worldwide. Of course, Edison had a bunch of assistants helping him devise inventions, and had also bought some of this patents.
2. Forward thinking
Edison had dispelled Tesla’s AC system of electric power transmission, calling it ‘impractical’, instead promoting his simpler yet less efficient DC system.
By contrast, Tesla’s ideas were often more disorderly technologies that didn’t have existing market demand. His alternating-current motor and hydroelectric plant at Niagara Falls- a first of its kind plant- truly electrified the world.
Tesla spent years working on a system that could wirelessly transmit voices, images and moving pictures. His ideas made him futurist. He later invented and patented Tesla Coil, which is till date used in radio, telephones, cell phones and television.
Edison’s enduring legacy is a result of his invention factories where tasks and inventions were carried out by legions of workers. After getting an idea, Edison would leave most of the experimentation on his assistants. By having multiple patents and inventions developing in parallel, Edison ensured a consistent, hefty financial supply to his assistants to continue running experiments and fleshing out more designs.
Tesla’s inventions are the backbone of modern power and communication systems, but he faded into anonymity later in the 20th century. Despite his many inventions and patents, he died an eccentric, destitute man in 1943.
Tesla’s AC systems eventually caught the attention of American engineer and businessman George Westinghouse, who was looking for a solution to supply the nation with long-distance power. Convinced that Tesla’s inventions will help him achieve this, he purchased his patents for 60,000 USD in cash and stock in the Westinghouse Corporation in 1888.
As the public interest in alternating current system grew, Tesla and Westinghouse stood in direct competition with Thomas Edison, who was intent on selling his direct-current system to the nation.
Edison also launched a negative press-campaign in an attempt to undermine the interest in AC power. All this while, Tesla continued his work and patented several more inventions during this period, including the ‘Tesla Coil’, which laid the foundation for wireless technology that is still in use in radio technology today.
Unfortunately for Edison, the Westinghouse Corporation was chosen to supply the lighting at the 1893 World’s Columbian Exposition in Chicago, and Tesla conducted demonstrations of his AC system there. Two years later, in 1895, Tesla designed one of the first AC hydroelectric power plants in the United States at Niagara Falls. The next year, it was used to power the city of Buffalo, New York. This feat was widely publicized throughout the world.
With its repeated success and favourable press, the alternating-current system became the leading power system of the 20th century and it has remained the worldwide standard since.
The disgraceful fall
Tesla became obsessed with the wireless transmission of energy. In around 1900, he started work on his boldest project, to build a global, wireless communication system to be transmitted through a large electrical tower for sharing information and providing free electricity throughout the world.
With funding from a group of investors that included financial giant J. P. Morgan, in 1901 Tesla began work on the project in earnest, designing and building a lab with a power plant and a massive transmission tower on a site on Long Island, New York, that became known as Wardenclyffe.
However, investors started doubting the plausibility of Tesla’s system his rival, Guglielmo Marconi-with the financial support of Andrew Carnegie and Thomas Edison-continued to make great advances with his own radio technologies, Tesla had no choice but to abandon the project.
The Wardenclyffe staff was laid off in 1906 and in 1915 the site fell into foreclosure. Two years later Tesla declared bankruptcy and the tower was dismantled and sold for scrap to recover the debts he had accrued.
Edison’s Campaign to Discredit the AC Current ; Electrocuting Topsy , A female elephant to death
On January 4, 1903, Thomas Edison, inventor of the incandescent lightbulb, helped electrocute an elephant to death.
Topsy, a cranky female elephant at the Luna Park Zoo, had squashed three of her trainers in the past three years. Desiring to just be rid of her, the Luna Park Zoo decided to kill her, initially choosing to try to hang the elephant.
Edison had established direct current (electricity flowing only one way) as the standard for distributing electricity and was very wealthy from the patent royalties, royalties he could lose when George Westinghouse and Nicola Tesla showed up with the idea of alternating current (electricity flowing in either direction).
Eager to prove his point and seek redemption as he had lost to Tesla almost a decade before in the War of Currents, he launched a campaign to discredit the new theory in which he would electrocute animals (usually cats and dogs, but sometimes horses and cattle). When zoo officials heard of Edison’s work they sought his help with Topsy. While he was not there, his company was more than willing to assist the zoo officials and prove the “dangers” of the AC. An Edison film crew even made a video of the procedure!
When the day arrived, Edison’s team attached copper electrodes to Topsy’s feet and ran a copper wire back to the group. To make sure that Topsy died and was not just made angry by the electricity, cyanide-laced carrots were fed to the elephant moments before she was electrocuted. Officials didn’t even need to worry. The 6,600 volts of AC killed Topsy immediately, and Edison’s point had been proven.
Death and legacy
Tesla suffered a nervous breakdown and eventually returned to work as a consultant primarily. But as time passed, his ideas progressively became more unusual and impractical. He also grew increasingly eccentric and devoted much of his time in caring for wold pigeons in New York City’s parks.
The Mystery of Nikola Tesla’s Missing Files
After Nikola Tesla was found dead in January 1943 in his hotel room in New York City, representatives of the U.S. government’s Office of Alien Property seized many documents relating to the brilliant and prolific 86-year-old inventor’s work.
It was the height of World War II, and Tesla had claimed to have invented a powerful particle-beam weapon, known as the “Death Ray,” that could have proved invaluable in the ongoing conflict. So rather than risk Tesla’s technology falling into the hands of America’s enemies, the government swooped in and took possession of all the property and documents from his room at the New Yorker Hotel.
What happened to Tesla’s files from there, as well as what exactly was in those files, remains shrouded in mystery—and ripe for conspiracy theories. After years of fielding questions about possible cover-ups, the FBI finally declassified some 250 pages of Tesla-related documents under the Freedom of Information Act in 2016. The bureau followed up with two additional releases, the latest in March 2018. But even with the publication of these documents, many questions still remain unanswered—and some of Tesla’s files are still missing.
Three weeks after the Serbian-American inventor’s death, an electrical engineer from the Massachusetts Institute of Technology (MIT) was tasked with evaluating his papers to determine whether they contained “any ideas of significant value.” According to the declassified files, Dr. John G. Trump reported that his analysis showed Tesla’s efforts to be “primarily of a speculative, philosophical and promotional character” and said the papers did “not include new sound, workable principles or methods for realizing such results.”
The scientist’s name undoubtedly rings a bell, as John G. Trump was the uncle of the 45th U.S. president, Donald J. Trump. The younger brother of Trump’s father, Fred, he helped design X-ray machines that greatly helped cancer patients and worked on radar research for the Allies during World War II. Donald Trump himself cited his uncle’s credentials often during his presidential campaign. “My uncle used to tell me about nuclear before nuclear was nuclear,” he once told an interviewer.
At the time, the FBI pointed to Dr. Trump’s report as evidence that Tesla’s vaunted “Death Ray” particle beam weapon didn’t exist, outside of rumors and speculation. But in fact, the U.S. government itself was split in its response to Tesla’s technology. Marc Seifer, author of the biography Wizard: The Life & Times of Nikola Tesla, says a group of military personnel at Wright Patterson Air Force Base in Dayton, Ohio, including Brigadier General L.C. Craigee, had a very different opinion of Tesla’s ideas.
“Craigee was the first person to ever fly a jet plane for the military, so he was like the John Glenn of the day,” Seifer says. “He said, ‘there’s something to this—the particle beam weapon is real.’ So you have two different groups, one group dismissing Tesla’s invention, and another group saying there’s really something to it.”
Then there’s the nagging question of the missing files. When Tesla died, his estate was to go to his nephew, Sava Kosanovic, who at the time was the Yugoslav ambassador to the U.S. (thanks to his familial connection with Serbia’s most celebrated inventor). According to the recently declassified documents, some in the FBI feared Kosanovic was trying to wrest control of Tesla’s technology in order to “make such information available to the enemy,” and even considered arresting him to prevent this.
In 1952, after a U.S. court declared Kosanovic the rightful heir to his uncle’s estate, Tesla’s files and other materials were sent to Belgrade, Serbia, where they now reside in the Nikola Tesla Museum there. But while the FBI originally recorded some 80 trunks among Tesla’s effects, only 60 arrived in Belgrade, Seifer says. “Maybe they packed the 80 into 60, but there is the possibility that…the government did keep the missing trunks.”
For the five-part HISTORY series The Tesla Files, Seifer joined forces with Dr. Travis Taylor, an astrophysicist, and Jason Stapleton, an investigative reporter, to search for these missing files and seek out the truth of the government’s views on the “Death Ray” particle-beam weapon and Tesla’s other ideas.
Despite John G. Trump’s dismissive assessment of Tesla’s ideas immediately after his death, the military did try and incorporate particle-beam weaponry in the decades following World War II, Seifer says. Notably, the inspiration of the “Death Ray” fueled Ronald Reagan’s Strategic Defense Initiative, or “Star Wars” program, in the 1980s. If the government is still using Tesla’s ideas to power its technology, Seifer explains, that could explain why some files related to the inventor still remain classified.
There is evidence that Franklin D. Roosevelt’s vice president, Henry Wallace, discussed “the effects of TESLA, particularly those dealing with the wireless transmission of electrical energy and the ‘death ray’” with his advisors, according to FBI documents released in 2016. Along the same lines, Seifer and his colleagues in The Tesla Files uncovered the role played by Vannevar Bush, whom FDR appointed as head of the Manhattan Project, in the evaluation of Tesla’s papers. They also looked at the possibility that FDR himself may have sought a meeting with the inventor just before he died.
By visiting some of the key places in Tesla’s life—from his laboratory in Colorado Springs to his last living quarters at the Hotel New Yorker to the mysterious wireless tower he built at Wardenclyffe, Long Island—Seifer, Taylor and Stapleton sought to unravel some of the mysteries surrounding the celebrated, enigmatic inventor. They also traveled to California, where some of Tesla’s other groundbreaking ideas —many of which were seen as unrealistic or even crackpot during his own lifetime—now fuel some of the most dominant industries in Silicon Valley.
Although some of his more sensitive innovations may still be hidden, Tesla’s legacy is alive and well, both in the devices we use every day, and the technologies that will undoubtedly play a role in our future. “Tesla is the inventor of wireless technology. He’s the inventor of the ability to create an unlimited number of wireless channels,” Seifer says of the inventor’s lasting impact. “So radio guidance systems, encryption, remote control robots—it’s all based on Tesla’s technology.”
Credits to History Channel for the information on Tesla’s Missing papers.
“The present is theirs; the future, for which I really worked, is mine.The day science begins to study non-physical phenomena, it will make more progress in one decade than in all the previous centuries of its existence.“
Nikola Tesla born in 10 July 1856 Smiljan, Croatia was a Serbian-American inventor, electrical engineer, mechanical engineer, and futurist who is best known for his contributions to the design of the modern alternating current (AC) electricity supply system.
Nikola Tesla was born an ethnic Serb in the village Smiljan, Lika county, in the Austrian Empire (present day Croatia), on 10 July 1856. His father, Milutin Tesla (1819–1879), was an Eastern Orthodox priest. Tesla’s mother, Đuka Tesla (née Mandić; 1822–1892), whose father was also an Orthodox priest, had a talent for making home craft tools and mechanical appliances and the ability to memorize Serbian epic poems.
Đuka had never received a formal education.Tesla credited his eidetic memory and creative abilities to his mother’s genetics and influence.
Tesla’s progenitors were from western Serbia, near Montenegro.Tesla was the fourth of five children. He had three sisters, Milka, Angelina and Marica, and an older brother named Dane, who was killed in a horse riding accident when Tesla was aged five.
In 1861, Tesla attended primary school in Smiljan where he studied German, arithmetic, and religion. In 1862, the Tesla family moved to the nearby Gospić, Lika where Tesla’s father worked as parish priest.Nikola completed primary school, followed by middle school.
In 1870, Tesla moved far north to Karlovac to attend high school at the Higher Real Gymnasium. The classes were held in German, as it was a school within the Austro-Hungarian Military Frontier.
Tesla studied math and physics at the Technical University of Graz and philosophy at the University of Prague. In 1882, while on a walk, he came up with the idea for a brushless AC motor, making the first sketches of its rotating electromagnets in the sand of the path. Later that year he moved to Paris and got a job repairing direct current (DC) power plants with the Continental Edison Company. Two years later he immigrated to the United States.
AC motor, Carbon button lamp, Death ray, Induction motor, Plasma globe, Plasma lamp, Polyphase system, Radio control, Resonant inductive coupling, Rotating magnetic field, Teleforce, Telegeodynamics, Teleoperation, Tesla coil, Tesla’s Egg of Columbus, Tesla Experimental Station, Tesla’s oscillator, Tesla turbine, Tesla valve
, Torpedo, Vacuum variable capacitor, Violet ray, VTOL, Tesla Tower, Wireless power transfer, World Wireless System.
Nikola Tesla and Thomas Edison
Tesla arrived in New York in 1884 and was hired as an engineer at Thomas Edison’s Manhattan headquarters. He worked there for a year, impressing Edison with his diligence and ingenuity. At one point Edison told Tesla he would pay $50,000 for an improved design for his DC dynamos. After months of experimentation, Tesla presented a solution and asked for the money. Edison demurred, saying, “Tesla, you don’t understand our American humor.” Tesla quit soon after.
About Marriage, Relationship and women
Married life was not for Tesla, who once said: “I do not think you can name many great inventions that have been made by married men.”
He reportedly thought that sex would hinder his scientific work.Tesla wrote in a 1935 magazine article:The trend of opinion among eugenists is that we must make marriage more difficult. Certainly no one who is not a desirable parent should be permitted to produce progeny.
A century from now it will no more occur to a normal person to mate with a person eugenically unfit than to marry a habitual criminal.
From Galveston Daily News, Galveston, Texas, page 23. August 10, 1924.
“I had always thought of woman,” says Mr. Tesla, “as possessing those delicate qualities of mind and soul that made her in these respects far superior to man. I had put her on a lofty pedestal, figuratively speaking, and ranked her in certain important attributes considerably higher than man. I worshiped at the feet of the creature I had raised to this height, and, like every true worshiper, I felt myself unworthy of the object of my worship.
“But all this was in the past. Now the soft-voiced gentle woman of my reverent worship has all but vanished.In her place has come the woman who thinks that her chief success in life lies in making herself as much as possible like man–in dress, voice and actions, in sports and achievements of every kind.”
In those words the great electrical genius sums up the reasons for his bachelorhood.
Some who read them will urge that his view of womankind is distorted by the years he has spent in the laboratory, dealing with inanimate things and developing perhaps an abnormal shyness which acts as an insuperable barrier to marriage. Others will say that the very fact of his detachment from the ordinary routine of life makes him all the better qualified to point out its defects and to criticize the change for the worse which he believes new conditions have brought to womankind.
“The world has experienced many tragedies, but to my mind the greatest tragedy of all is the present economic condition wherein women strive against men, and in many cases actually succeed in usurping their places in the professions and in industry. This growing tendency of women to overshadow the masculine is a sign of a deteriorating civilization.
“Woman’s determined competition with man in the business world is breaking down some of the best traditions–things which have proved the moving factors in the world’s slow but substantial progress.
“Practically all the great achievements of man until now have been inspired by his love and devotion to woman. Man has aspired to great things because some woman believed in him, because he wished to command her admiration and respect. For these reasons he has fought for her and risked his life and his all for her time and time again.
“Perhaps the male in human society is useless. I am frank to admit that I don’t know. If women are beginning to feel this way about it–and there is striking evidence at hand that they do–then we are entering upon the cruelest period of the world’s history.
“Our civilization will sink to a state like that which is found among the bees, ants and other insects–a state wherein the male is ruthlessly killed off. In this matriarchal empire which will be established the female rules. As the female predominates, the males are at her mercy. The male is considered important only as a factor in the general scheme of the continuity of life.
“The tendency of women to push aside man, supplanting the old spirit of cooperation with him in all the affairs of life, is very disappointing to me.
“Woman’s independence and her cleverness in obtaining what she wants in the business world is breaking down man’s spirit of independence. The old fire he once experienced at being able to achieve something that would compel and hold a woman’s devotion is turning to ashes.
“Women don’t seem to want that sort of thing to-day. They appear to want to control and govern. They want man to look up to them, instead of their looking up to him.
“In voicing his gloomy views of modern life Mr. Tesla says his observations are not confined to the women of this country. Conditions abroad, he says, suggest that the same tendency is world-wide. Having always regarded woman as a super-being, he expresses great sadness over the change he thinks the last few years have brought in her.
“I am considering this question not merely from the standpoint of a man,” he points out. “I am thinking of the woman’s side of it.”
As we contemplate any change, we naturally take into consideration the results that may follow such an innovation. One of the results to my mind is quite a pathetic one. Woman, herself, is really the victim instead of, as she thinks, the victor. Contentment is absent from her life. She is ambitious, often far beyond her natural equipment, to attain the thing she wants. She too frequently forgets that all women cannot be prima donnas and motion picture stars.
“Woman’s discontent makes the life of the present day still more overstressed. The high pitch given to existence by people who are restless and dissatisfied because they fail to achieve things wholly out of proportion to the health and talent with which Nature has endowed them is a bad thing for the world.
“It seems to me that women are not particularly happy in this newly found freedom, in this new competition which they are waging so persistently against men in business and the professions and even in sport. The question that naturally arises is, whether the women themselves are the gainers or the losers.
“Discontent makes for cranks and unnatural people. There seems to be an uncommon number of them about to-day. This is one of the reasons I remain apart from the crowds. The public, or semi-public, character is the target for all sorts of attacks and unpleasant communications.Mr. Tesla is not given to making statements that he cannot prove. His life’s work has been based on logic, not on guesses.For example, I used to receive all sorts of strange notes, many of them letters from cranks threatening my life, because they had read about my experiments in manufacturing lightning bolts. They wrote that they believed I was using these lightning flashes to kill them!
“It seems to me that anything which adds to the great discontent which we observe on every side to-day must be a bad influence on our life. Women who keep themselves agitated by their tremendous ambition to beat man at his game are losing at the same time something that counts for more in the end, it seems to me, than the empty honors that success in business or one of the professions can ever give.
“The power of the true woman is so great that I believe if a beautiful woman–that is to say, one beautiful in spirit, in manner and in thought, in fact, beautiful in every respect, a sort of goddess–were to appear suddenly on earth, she could command the whole world. Her leadership, I believe, would be universally recognized.
“History has given us many examples of the wonderful influence exerted by unusual women. Among these have been the mothers of great men. But their influence lay not in their determination to outdo man, or even to compete with him.
“Perhaps because woman is a finer and more highly sensitized instrument she knows by instinct her power and understands that the extent of it lies in the high position she takes for herself. But the superior never descends to the level of the commonplace.
“These views of Nikola Tesla will be received with great interest, whether one agrees or not with his idea that woman in her new role is a sinister force that is going to pull down to ruin our whole social structure. He is generally recognized as one of the greatest mentalities of the present day.
Caption:“In place of the soft voiced, gentle woman of my reverent worship,” says Mr. Tesla, “has come the woman who thinks that her chief success in life lies in making herself as much as possible like man–in dress, voice and actions, in sports and achievements of every kind”
Tesla, Philosophy and Swami Vivekananda
Swami Vivekananda, late in the year l895 wrote in a letter to an English friend, “Mr. Tesla thinks he can demonstrate mathematically that force and matter are reducible to potential energy. I am to go and see him next week to get this new mathematical demonstration. In that case the Vedantic cosmoloqy will be placed on the surest of foundations.I am working a good deal now upon the cosmology and eschatology of the Vedanta. I clearly see their perfect union with modern science, and the elucidation of the one will be followed by that of the other.” (Complete Works, Vol. V, Fifth Edition, 1347, p. 77).
Here Swamiji uses the terms force and matter for the Sanskrit terms Prana and Akasha. Tesla used the Sanskrit terms and apparently understood them as energy and mass. (In Swamiji’s day, as in many dictionaries published in the first half of the present century, force and energy were not alwavys clearly differentiated.
Energy is a more proper translation of the Sanskrit term Prana.)Tesla apparently failed in his effort to show the identity of mass and energy.
Apparently he understood that when speed increases, mass must decrease. He seems to have thought that mass might be “converted” to energy and vice versa, rather than that they were identical in some way, as is pointed out in Einstein’s equations.
At any rate, Swamiji seems to have sensed where the difficulty lay in joining the maps of European science and Advaita Vedanta and set Tesla to solve the problem.
It is apparently in the hope that Tesla would succeed in this that Swamiji says “In that case the Vedantic cosmology will be placed on the surest of foundations.” Unfortunately Tesla failed and the solution did not come till ten years later, in a paper by Albert Einstein. But by then Swamiji was gone and the connecting of the maps was delayed.The Influence of Vedic Philosophy on Nikola Tesla’s Understanding of Free Energy
An Article by Toby GrotzWeb Publication by Mountain Man Graphics, Australia – Southern Autumn of 1997Nikola Tesla used ancient Sanskrit terminology in his descriptions of natural phenomena.
As early as 1891 Tesla described the universe as a kinetic system filled with energy which could be harnessed at any location. His concepts during the following years were greatly influenced by the teachings of Swami Vivekananda.
Swami Vivekananda was the first of a succession of eastern yogi’s who brought Vedic philosophy and religion to the west. After meeting the Swami and after continued study of the Eastern view of the mechanisms driving the material world, Tesla began using the Sanskrit words Akasha, Prana, and the concept of a luminiferous ether to describe the source, existence and construction of matter.
This paper will trace the development of Tesla’s understanding of Vedic Science, his correspondence with Lord Kelvin concerning these matters, and the relation between Tesla and Walter Russell and other turn of the century scientists concerning advanced understanding of physics. Finally, after being obscured for many years, the author will give a description of what he believes is the the pre-requisite for the free energy systems envisioned by Tesla.
Tesla’s Earler Description of the Physical UniverseBy the year 1891, Nikola Tesla had invented many useful devices.These included a system of arc lighting (1886), the alternating current motor, power generation and transmission systems (1888), systems of electrical conversion and distribution by oscillatory discharges (1889), and a generator of high frequency currents (1890), to name a few. The most well known patent centers around an inspiration that occurred while walking with a friend in a park in Budapest, Hungry. It was while observing the sunset that Tesla had a vision of how rotating electromagnetic fields could be used in a new form of electric motor. his led to the well known system of alternating current power distribution. In 1891 however, Tesla patented what one day may become his most famous invention. It is the basis for the wireless transmission of electrical power and is know as the Tesla Coil Transformer. It was during this year that Tesla made the following comments during a speech before the American Institute of Electrical Engineers: “Ere many generations pass, our machinery will be driven by a power obtainable at any point in the universe. This idea is not novel… We find it in the delightful myth of Antheus, who derives power from the earth; we find it among the subtle speculations of one of your splendid mathematicians… Throughout space there is energy. Is this energy static or kinetic.? If static our hopes are in vain; if kinetic – and this we know it is, for certain – then it is a mere question of time when men will succeed in attaching their machinery to the very wheelwork of nature.” 
This description of the physical mechanisms of the universe was given before Tesla became familiar with the Vedic science of the eastern Nations of India, Tibet, and Nepal. This science was first popualized in the United States and the west during the three year visit of Swami Vivekananda.Vedic Science and Swami VivekanandaThe Vedas are a collection of writings consisting of hymns, prayers, myths, historical accounting, dissertations on science, and the nature of reality, which date back at least 5,000 years.The nature of matter, antimatter, and the make up of atomic structure are described in the Vedas. The language of the Vedas is known as Sanskrit. The origin of Sanskrit is not fully understood. Western scholars suggest that it was brought into the Himalayas and thence south into India by the southward migrations of the Aryan culture. Paramahansa Yogananda and other historians however do not subscribe to that theory, pointing out that there is no evidence within India to substantiate such claims. 
There are words in Sanskrit that describe concepts totally foreign to the western mind. Single words may require a full paragraph for translation into english. Having studied Sanskrit for a brief period during the late 70’s, it finally occurred to this writer that Tesla’s use of Vedic terminology could provide a key to understanding his view of electromagnetism and the nature of the universe.
But where did Tesla learn Vedic concepts and Sanskrit terminology? A review of the well known biographies by Cheney, Hunt and Draper, and O’Neil , , , reveal no mention of Tesla’s knowledge of Sanskrit. O’Neal however includes the following excerpt from an unpublished article called Man’s Greatest Achievement: “There manifests itself in the fully developed being , Man, a desire mysterious, inscrutable and irresistible: to imitate nature, to create, to work himself the wonders he perceives…. Long ago he recognized that all perceptible matter comes from a primary substance, or tenuity beyond conception, filling all space, the Akasha or luminiferous ether, which is acted upon by the life giving Prana or creative force, calling into existence, in never ending cycles all things and phenomena.
The primary substance, thrown into infinitesimal whirls of prodigious velocity, becomes gross matter; the force subsiding, the motion ceases and matter disappears, reverting to the primary substance.”According to Leland Anderson the article was written May 13th, 1907.Anderson also suggested that it was through association with Swami Vivekananda that Tesla may have come into contact with Sanskrit terminology and that John Dobson of the San Francisco Sidewalk Astronomers Association had researched that association. 
Swami Vivekananda was born in Calcutta, India in 1863. He was inspired by his teacher, Ramakrishna to serve men as visible manifestations of God. In 1893 Swami Vivekananda began a tour of the west by attending the Parliament of Religions held in Chicago. During the three years that he toured the United States and Europe, Vivekananda met with many of the well known scientists of the time including Lord Kelvin and Nikola Tesla. 
According to Swami Nikhilananda: Nikola Tesla, the great scientist who specialized in the field of electricity, was much impressed to hear from the Swami his explanation of the Samkhya cosmogony and the theory of cycles given by the Hindus. He was particularly struck by the resemblance between the Samkhya theory of matter and energy and that of modern physics.
The Swami also met in New York Sir William Thompson, afterwards Lord Kelvin, and Professor Helmholtz, two leading representatives of western science. Sarah Bernhardt, the famous French actress had an interview with the Swami and greatly admired his teachings. It was at a party given by Sarah Bernhardt that Nikola Tesla probably first met Swami Vivekananda. 
Sarah Bernhardt was playing the part of ‘Iziel’ in a play of the same name. It was a French version about the life of Bhudda. The actress upon seeing Swami Vivekananda in the audience, arranged a meeting which was also attended by Nikola Tesla. In a letter to a friend, dated February 13th, 1896, Swami Vivekananda noted the following: …Mr. Tesla was charmed to hear about the Vedantic Prana and Akasha and the Kalpas, which according to him are the only theories modern science can entertain…..Mr Tesla thinks he can demonstrate that mathematically that force and matter are reducible to potential energy. I am to go see him next week to get this mathematical demonstration. 
Swami Vivekananda was hopeful that Tesla would be able to show that what we call matter is simply potential energy because that would reconcile the teachings of the Vedas with modern science. The Swami realized that “In that case, the Vedantic cosmology [would] be placed on the surest of foundations”Tesla understood the Sanskrit terminology and philosophy and found that it was a good means to describe the physical mechanisms of the universe as seen through his eyes.
It would behoove those who would attempt to understand the science behind the inventions of Nikola Tesla to study Sanskrit and Vedic philosophy.Tesla apparently failed to show the identity of energy and matter. If he had, certainly Swami Vivekananda would have recorded that occasion. The mathematical proof of the principle did come until about ten years later when Albert Einstein published his paper on relativity.
What had been known in the East for the last 5,000 years was then known to the West. Brahman is defined as the one self existent impersonal spirit; the Divine Essence, from which all things emanate, by which they are sustained, and to which they return. Notice that this is very similar to the concept of the Great Spirit as understood by Native American cultures. Ishvara is the Supreme Ruler; the highest possible conception of the Absolute, which is beyond all thought. Mahat means literally the Great One, and is also interpreted as meaning universal mind or cosmic intelligence.
Prana means energy (usually translated as life force) and Akasha means matter (usually translated as ether). Dobson points out that the more common translations for Akasha and Prana are not quite correct, but that Tesla did understand their true meanings.
The meeting with Swami Vivekananda greatly stimulated Nikola Tesla’s interest in Eastern Science. The Swami later remarked during a lecture in India, “I myself have been told by some of the best scientific minds of the day, how wonderfully rational the conclusions of the Vedanta are. I know of one of them personally, who scarcely has time to eat his meal, or go out of his laboratory, but who would stand by the hour to attend my lectures on the Vedanta; for, as he expresses it, they are so scientific, they so exactly harmonize with the aspirations of the age and with the conclusions to which modern science is coming at the present time”. 
Failures, Death and Legacy
In 1895 Tesla’s New York lab burned, destroying years’ worth of notes and equipment.
Tesla relocated to Colorado Springs for two years, returning to New York in 1900. He secured backing from financier J.P. Morgan and began building a global communications network centered on a giant tower at Wardenclyffe, on Long Island.
But funds ran out and Morgan balked at Tesla’s grandiose schemes.
Tesla lived his last decades in a New York hotel, working on new inventions even as his energy and mental health faded.
His obsession with the number three and fastidious washing were dismissed as the eccentricities of genius.
He spent his final years feeding—and, he claimed, communicating with—the city’s pigeons.
Tesla died in his room on January 7, 1943. Later that year the U.S. Supreme Court voided four of Marconi’s key patents, belatedly acknowledging Tesla’s innovations in radio.
The AC system he championed and improved remains the global standard for power transmission.
Awards & Recognition
Order of St. Sava, II Class, Government of Serbia (1892), Elliott Cresson Medal (1894), Order of Prince Danilo I (1895), Edison Medal (1916), Order of St. Sava, I Class, Government of Yugoslavia (1926), Order of the Yugoslav Crown (1931), John Scott Medal (1934), Order of the White Eagle, I Class, Government of Yugoslavia (1936), Order of the White Lion, I Class, Government of Czechoslovakia (1937), University of Paris Medal (1937), The Medal of the University St Clement of Ochrida, Sofia, Bulgaria (1939).
1. Ratzlaff, John, Tesla Said, Tesla Book Company, PO Box 1649, Greenville, TX 75401, 1984.
2. Yogananda, Paramahansa, Autobiography of a Yogi, Self Realization Fellowship,, 3880 San Rafael Ave., Los Angeles, CA 90065, 1985.
3. Cheney, Margaret, Man Out of Time, Prentice Hall, 1981.
4. Hunt, Inez and Draper. Wanetta, W., Lightning In His Hand, The Life Story Of Nikola Tesla, Omni Publications, Hawthorne, CA, 1981.
5. O’Neal, John, J., Prodigal Genius, The Life Of Nikola Tesla, Ives Washington, Inc., 1944.
6. Anderson, Leland, personal communication. See also Anderson, L.I., and Ratzlaff, J.T., Dr. Nikola Tesla Bibliography, Ragusan Press, 936 Industrial Avenue, Palo Alto, CA 94303, 1979.
7. Nikhilananda, Swami, Vivekananda, The Yogas and Other Works, Ramakrishna-Vivekananda Center, New York, 1973.
8. Nikhilananda, Swami.
9. Dobson, John, personal communication.
10. Dobson, John, Advaita Vedanta and Modern Science, Vedanta Book Center, 5423 S. Hyde Park, Chicago, IL 60615, 1979.
11. Burke, Marie Louise, Swami Vivekananda in the West, New Discoveries, The World Teacher, Advaita Ashrama, Mayavati, India, 1985, p. 500
12. Tesla Society’s Website
13. ‘Nikola Tesla’ by HISTORY.COM EDITORS.
14. ‘Nikola Tesla Fell In Love With A Pigeon–And Six More Freaky Facts About The Iconic Inventor’ by David Freeman.
UNESCO’s World Heritage Committee has voted to list the sprawling Mesopotamian metropolis of Babylon as a World Heritage Site after three decades of lobbying efforts by Iraq.Iraq had been trying since 1983 to have the site – a massive 10sq-km complex of which just 18 percent has been excavated thus far – recognised by UNESCO.
The Ishtar Gate at the ancient archaeological site of Babylon, south of the Iraqi capital Baghdad [Hussein Faleh/AFP]
Straddling Iraq’s Euphrates River, about 100 kilometres south of Baghdad, the city was the centre of the ancient Babylonian empire more than 4,000 years ago.”What is the world heritage list without Babylon? How to tell the history of humanity without the earliest of old chapters, Babylon?” said Iraq’s representative to UNESCO’s World Heritage Committee before the vote as reported by Al-Jazeera.
The committee met in Azerbaijan’s capital of Baku to consider Babylon and another 34 sites, including in Brazil and Burkina Faso, for the World Heritage List.After the successful vote, Iraq’s delegation clasped hands and invited all delegates “to visit Babylon, the cradle of civilisation”.
Babylon developed as a walled city of mudbrick temples and towers, known internationally for its hanging gardens, the Tower of Babel, and the Ishtar Gate.Excavation began in the early 1800s and artefacts were sent abroad, including parts of the Ishtar Gate which remain in museums across Europe.
“Babylon is the largest populated city in ancient history,” said Qahtan al-Abeed, who heads the Basra Antiquities Department and led efforts to get the site listed.”The Babylonians were the civilisation of writing, administration and science,” he told the AFP news agency.
Putting Babylon on the World Heritage List “will encourage research and development of the site”, and would “be free publicity for tourists”, he added excitedly.
Babel’s Lion at the ancient archaeological site of Babylon [File: Hussein Faleh/AFP]
Eleven ‘tentative’ sites
Babylon is one of 7,000 archaeological sites across Iraq, many of which were destroyed by the Islamic State of Iraq and the Levant group (ISIS or ISIL) or ravaged by lucrative artefact smuggling.Several Iraqi antiquities were also looted after the US invasion in 2003, and according to a report by the British Museum, the invasion caused widespread damage and severe contamination to the remains of the ancient city.
Other sites in Iraq have also been listed by UNESCO, including the Erbil citadel in northern Iraq and the southern Mesopotamian marshes.After decades of back-to-back conflict, the country declared victory against ISIL in 2017 and is now basking in a period of relative calm.It has sought to attract both international investors and tourists, and hopes its prominence on UNESCO’s lists can do both.
Mesopotamia, Where Civilization Began 4000 B.C.E– 1750 B.C.E
By 4000 B.C.E, many different groups of people were working out their lives in a variety of ways. In a great arc from the eastern coast of the Mediterranean, across the Turkish plains and through the highlands of Iraq and Iran, groups of peoples had settled and were farming, tending animals, making pottery and building towns, markets and forts. In the deserts, mountains and steppes, nomadic tribesmen lived by herding animals and by hunting and raiding.
As all these populations grew, they began to compete for land, food and supplies.One of the areas that was to become most sought after was a stretch of land almost at the very centre of these various peoples. It was only about 150 miles wide and 600 miles long and extended from the foothills of northwester Iraq to the Persian Gulf. Two rivers, the Tigris and the Euphrates, drained the area and gave it its name, Mesopotamia – “the land between the rivers”.For the next 3,500 years, Mesopotamia was to witness the rise and fall of many cities and cultures.
Sumerians, Akkadians, Babylonians, Assyrians, Chaldaeans – these were only some of the people who took root and flourished in this land. Finally the Persians came and reduced Mesopotamia to a mere province but from the first unknown settlers to the mighty Nebuchadnezzar, this land gave rise to much that would affect all civilization.
The first settlers in Mesopotamia set up their villages and farmed in the upper reaches of the Tigris. These were among the earliest farming communities anywhere in the world, but they gradually declined and it was many years later before this region came to be known as Assyria.Mesopotamia’s southern region, which was later called Babylonia, was especially hot and dry and did not seem to attract early man. Between the rivers were broad plains, ideal for farming if they could be watered. Along the lower reaches and in the delta, were marshlands with fish and wild fowl and reeds that could be made into boats and huts. What was needed to develop this territory were men willing to settle and work the land.
Raise and fall of Hammurabi
Finally, out of all this turmoil, one of the Amorite kings emerged as a true ruler. He was Hammurabi of Babylon, an old Sumerian city that had never been of much importance. But when Hammurabi came to its throne about 1790 BC.E, Babylon was becoming one of the stronger cities. Hammurabi took firm control, defeated various warring groups and gradually brought the cities and lands of Sumer and Akkad into a kingdom of Babylonia.Hammurabi was more than a military chieftain. He ran a true government, undertaking everything from new canals to a revised calendar. He personally supervised the affairs of his kingdom and was constantly sending letters and documents to his officials. Nothing was too small for his attention.
If an official neglected to clear out an irrigation canal, Hammurabi ordered him to do the job and report back. If there was a charge of bribery, Hammurabi ordered an investigation and had everyone involved brought before him. Hammurabi’s great achievement was restoring law and order in the land. He was following tradition when he did this, for the settles peoples of Mesopotamia had always respected law, whether in the conduct of their business or in the worship of their gods. Justice was “the straight thing” that kept people on the right path.Hammurabi issued many laws and regulations.
They dealt with everything from prices, wages and debts to broken contracts and the conduct of lawsuits. Then, when his reign was drawing to an end, he decided that the laws needed improving. Some had to be completely revised; others needed to be explained. With the inspiration from Shamash, god of the sun and of justice, he drew up the new laws. He had them engraved on stone and sent them forth throughout the kingdom.
“Hammurabi the reverent god-fearing prince”, began the inscription, was called by the gods “to make justice appear in the land, to destroy the evil and wicked that the strong might not oppress the weak”.
The laws that followed dealt with many matters: the administration of justice, property, marriage, assault, agriculture, wages and slaves. Many of them were based on the ancient idea of “an eye for an eye” – that is, a man who had put out someone’s eye would be punished by having his own eye put out. “If a man accuses another man of murder and it proves to be false, the accuser shall be put to death,” said one of Hammurabi’s laws. Another said, “if a builder makes a house for a man and the house falls down and causes the death of the owner, the builder shall be put to death”. It was harsh justice but atleast the laws were written down for all men to appeal to and behind them was the power of the king of Babylon.
When Hammurabi died, he was succeeded by his son, but the dynasty soon ended. Kassites tribesman from the Zagros Mountains to the east, began to raid Babylonia and in time they captured the cities of Ur and Uruk. The people in the southern marshes known as the “sea lands” revolted and set up their own kingdom. Then out of the north came a new brand of marauders, the Hittities.
They took Babylon, plundered and burnt it and then withdrew, but the damage was done. The irrigation systems, writing, the ziggurats, the laws – such things survived for centuries, but the first great age of Mesopotamia was at an end.
This article is all about Alluri Sita Rama Raju, A great revolutionary hero and a true Indian patriot, Who brought shiver in the spine of British colonial rulers. One of the greatest revolutionary fighters of Andhra Pradesh. He fought for a cause, for social justice, for freedom, and for to liberate innocent tribals from bondage and slavery. Who were looted by colonial rulers, morally materially and culturally. He made a great revolt on behalf of Manyam Tribal people ( Manyam is a tribal corridor extended from Vijayanagaram to Godavari Districts of Andhra Pradesh, India)
One of the more ignored aspects of the Indian freedom struggle has been the various tribal revolts that broke out against the British rule. Tribals were prohibited from cutting trees for firewood, their traditional Podu cultivation was banned, and they were often exploited by contractors who used them as labor for building roads in those areas.
Many protests broke out in the tribal areas of Eastern Indian, notably Jharkhand, Chattisgarh, Western Odisha, Bengal, one of the more famous one was that of Birsa Munda in Jharkhand. The Agency area covering Andhra Pradesh and Telangana, is the name given to the tribal tracts of Northern parts of both the states, bordering Odisha, Chattisgarh, Maharashtra, along the Eastern Ghats. A vast area covering the districts of Vizag, Vizianagaram, Srikakulam, East and West Godavari in Andhra Pradesh, and Khammam, Warangal, Adilabad, Karimnagar in Telangana, with it’s hills, valleys, thick forests and tribal living there.
The oppressive Madras Forest Act of 1882, was a curse for the tribals of the Agency Area, who were prohibited from cutting trees for firewood and carrying out their traditional occupations. At such a time, Alluri Sitarama Raju emerged to fight for the tribal rights in Agency, and mobilize them for an armed revolution.
At an age of 27 years,he managed to foment an armed uprising with limited resources and motivating the poor, illiterate tribal against the mighty British empire.
July 4th, the day when America became independent of British colonial rule, Ramaraju was born at Pandrangi in Vishakapatnam district in 1897. His ancestors originally hailed from Rajolu in East Godavari district, before they migrated outwards, and his parents Venkatarama Raju and Suryanarayanamma, were originally from Mogallu in West Godavari district. He had a sister Sitamma and a brother Satyanarayana Raju. His real name was Sriramaraju named after his maternal grandfather, in due course of time, he came to be called as Sitaramaraju. As per some sources it is believed that he adopted the name of Sitarama Raju after the woman who loved him, but whom he could not marry.
Raju lost his father when he was just 6 years old, and his family had to suffer a lot due to financial difficulties. His uncle Ramakrishna Raju helped the family both financially as well as assisting Raju in his education. In 1909, he joined the Mission High School in Bhimavaram and would walk daily to it from Kovvada. He also learnt horse riding from his friend at Chinchinada a small village near Narasapur. He studied later at various schools in Rajahmundry, Rampachodavaram, Kakinada and Pithapuram, had to keep shifting constantly from one place to another.
His mind was never in studies, and he was restless always moving from one place to another, failing exams, often getting beaten up by his teacher. When his family was at Tuni, in 1918, Raju used to tour the hills, valleys nearby, where he came into contact with the tribals living there, and saw their condition first hand. He had the nationalist feelings from an early age itself, and believed deeply in God. He would regularly do Puja to Devi, as well as spend long hours in meditation.
The turning point in his life came when he went on a tour to the North in 1916. He stayed with Surendranath Banerjee for some time, and attended the Congress session at Lucknow.He learnt Sanskrit during his stay at Varanasi, also visited Ujjain, Haridwar, Indore, Baroda, Amritsar, Badrinath,and learnt many languages in course of time. It was a period of learning for him, when he read books on medicine, animal breeding,and also wrote some himself. In 1918 he again went on another tour, this time traveling through Nasik, Pune, Mumbai, Bastar, Mysore, before coming back to Krishnadevi Peta, where he stayed with his mother.
With his prowess in various martial arts,Ayurveda, Raju became a leader and inspiration for people living in the areas surrounding Tuni, Narsipatnam. He began to fight for the rights of the tribals in the Manyam region, and also led a campaign against alcoholism( widely prevalent there), casteism.
The lot of the tribals was miserable in the Manyam region, suffering exploitation from the Britishers in all ways possible. They were used as laborers, their lands taken over and their women folk were sexually exploited too.
They led a harsh life dependent on Podu(Shifting cultivation) and selling forest produce, and the exploitation made it even worse for them. In collaboration with contractors, the tribals were made to work as coolies for building roads, and were not even paid for their services.
The contractors would treat the tribals like slaves, making them work hard, not paying them, beating them up mercilessly. The tribals were made to carry the contractors from one place to another, their womenfolk were used sexually, it was a truly miserable existence for them. Sporadic revolts broke out in the Manyam region called Pithuri, one of them was at Lagarayi led by Verayya Dora, who was arrested at Rajavommangi.
Seeing the misery and exploitation, Alluri decided to stand along with the tribals, and fight for their rights. He bought awareness among them of their rights, infused courage and determination and motivated them to fight against the injustice meted out to them. The tribals in turn turned to him for guidance and advice,and he soon became a leader for the 30-40 odd tribal villages there. He made them give up their habit of toddy drinking, taught them in guerilla warfare and combat. The Gama brothers Gantam Dora and Mallu Dora, Kankipati Padalu, Aggiraju became some of his trusted lieutenants.
Bastian, the Tahsildar of Chintappali divison( now in Vizag district) was the most sadistic of all the British officers. He was notorious for his exploitation of the tribal coolies used for the construction of the road from Narsipatnam to Lambasingi. Tribals who demanded more pay were whipped to death, and Raju’s complaints to higher authorities fell on deaf ears. The authorities in turn getting reports of increasing revolutionary activity began to spy on Raju at Narsipatnam, Addateegala, and for some time he was in exile to avoid detection.With the help of Fazaulla Khan, the Dy.Collector of Polavaram, sympathetic to the tribal cause, Raju once again entered the Manyam region in 1922. For close to 2 years, Raju would lead one of the most intense uprisings against the British, that nearly shook them to the core. With Mallu Dora, Gantam Dora, Padalu, Aggiraju, he lead a team of nearly 150 fighters against the British, a formidable armed uprising.
The out break of August 1922- Attack on three police stations
In January 1922, an alarm was raised that a man named Alluri Sri Rama Raju was plotting a rebellion. A sub-Inspector of Police telegraphed to Mr.Swire,the then District Superintendent of Police, Agency Division,of what he had heard and feared. Mr.Swire held an enquiry at Narsipatnam and Raju was also present there. It was concluded that there was no evidence of a plot to raise a rebellion but that Raju was better kept under police surveillance.
“In the result it was decided to give Raju some land in the Agency : a plot was chosen at paidiput village Addatigala in Rampa Division and a kadapa was executed which gave him possession of it.”
“Apparently Raju settled there and soon acquired a reputation as s sanyasi,astrologer and megician. People from all parts of the agency went to see and consult him and he gave written mantrams to some of his callers.”
“Nothing happened till 26th July 1922 when Raju was given by the Divisional officer, Rampa Division, a document which is a sort of “pass port” permitting him to go to Nepal. The officer who gave him this died the day after he gave it; so nothing is known of the reasons for his actions. Raju left the document at the Addatigala Police Station and went his way.”
“Raju was next heard of at Peddavalsa in Gudem Taluk; there he was met by two leading men of Gudem- Gam Mallu Dora and Gam Gantam Dora, who complained to him of oppression by their taluk officer, Bastion , of the general discontent at his methods and at the forest reservation policy and told him they would join if he started a rebellion instead of going to Nepal.”
On the 21st August 1922 Raju and the Gam brothers started collecting men at Peddavalasa and on 22nd August 1922 a large body of men marched on Chintapalli and attacked the police station. The three constables in the station could not do anything against about 200 men who carried away arms and ammunition.
In all they obtained 27 carbines, 38 boyonets, 20 swards and hundreds of rounds of carbine ammunation. On the 28th August they were at Gudem and Devarapalli and marched to Gangaraju Madugula in the ghats sub division.
The immediate reaction of the government was to send police parties to close up on the area which they called Rampa while it meant the Agency area of Visakhapatnam. Throughout the struggle from 1922 on wards, the area is mentioned in the records as Rampa and the men who rose in arms as “fituridars”
The station crime history of Chitapalli is recorded as follows for the 22nd August 1922 (Station Crime History -part- IV General Information. Station -Chintapalli-Village VI,District – Vizagapatnam (Extract dt. 18 August 1935) Signed by the Inspector of Police
The Rebellion and the Operations:
The first attack during this fituri was on Chintapalli station on 22nd August 1922 at about 12 noon by Gam mallu Dora, Kankipati Sarabanna padel, Gabalam, Singadu, Mamidi Chinnayya, Jaggi Veerayya Dora and others headed by Alluri Sitarama raju and armed with muzzle loading guns. They tied the sentry and the waiting constables to the pillars of the station house, broke open the magazine and carried away about 1400 ball cartridges and 12 carbines.
The Inspector-General of Police proceeded to Narsipatnam, where a base was established. The Agency Commissioner and the Deputy Inspector General were to be available here to take quick decisions on different matters.
After looting three police stations, the rebel group had with them about 26 police muskets and 2,500 rounds of ammunition. At Rajavommangi the rebels released Virayya Dora from the prision. Virayya Dora was state prisoner at Vijayanagaram.
A second attack on Krishnadevipeta was feared when the sub-inspector was away attending the case of Virayya Dora at Rajavommangi on 24th August. Fear gripped the police force as they were not aware of when and how the attack would take place.
Three Assistant Superintendents of police arrived with more force on the 11th of September to search the Lammasingi area as also the jungles around Golugonda above ghats for rebels. Sitarama Raju moved over to Kilamkota and thence to Gangaraju Madugula. Many of his men were ill, The police were alert,averting the looting of police stations for arms and ammunition. Police searched villages and the Saraguda forest fo the rebels but in vain.
Two men were captured in the hills while the main body remained untraced. In this process even innocent villagers seem to have been caught and harassed for information, thus generating an atmosphere of fear in the tribal areas.
Sitarama Raju who planned the movement had a flag and the people identified it. There were mo face to face encounter or straight fight but it was guerilla warfare in the hills. Scott Coward, an experienced officer,with 33 reserve police and 6 mules left Chintapalli in search of the hideout of the rebels in the agency area. Local people gave food to the rebels, harbored them and also fed them with information about troop movements. The authorities were helpless as no information was forthcoming from the locals and the only thing they could do was to prosecute village headmen, who treated the police as aliens and indeed they represented the British. The agency Commissioner felt that “there was no general grievance which would make them support the fituri whole heartedly.”
Word spread that the rebels were descending on Narsipatnam via Kondasantha at the foot of the hills and the police lay in wait to attack them.The rebels slipped off around Gantavari Kottagudem and went into a hiding place in the hills while the police exhausted themselves searching for escapists in Saraguda forest, Sarabhannapalem, Koyyur and Peddavalasa.
For the police troop, the terrain was difficult and unfamiliar movement in the hills and jungles infested with wild animals caused them a lot of hardship and peril. Once a tigress killed three men while six officers each with fifty men were searching the Peddavalasa- Gudem-Chintapalli area. By September, the police force gradually swelled to about 400 men and eight European officers. They used lorries and elephants for transportation of men, equipment and rations. When subordinate ranks of scouts were caught by his men, Raju did not kill them but sent them back putting the fear of God into them. He told them that war was not against the Sub-ordinates but against the foreign rulers, namely the British.
The first three days of the rebellion:
The first three days of the outbreak are described by Kolanki Kannadu when he was caught by the police. The village munsif Kankipati Balayya Padalu sent some vessels and rice through Kannadu, the vetti to Raju who was going to Madugula on his mission to loot Chintapalli, 30 men met Raju at Pentrapadu and Kannadu describes the events as he was one in the group : On the first day,about 2 p.m, the fituridars under Raju went to Chintapalli and asked the constables to hand over arms and ammunition. The three constables present were tied to the pillars of the station verandah and each of them guarded by four fituridars. The lock of the station was broken open, and eleven carbines along with two boxes of ammunition were taken away. They did not enter the armory. They reached Sarabannapalem the next morning i.e. 23rd August, By 4.p.m the fituridars reached Krishnadevieta and waited in the temple there. Gam Gantam Dora and Gam Mallu Dora the two brothers, along with Aggi Raju went to the police station to get arms, the Sub-inspector and the police-men ran away leaving the police station.
At Krishnadevipeta the rebels got seven carbines and some boxes of ammunition. At Nadimpalem they snatched away one carbine and cartridges from the constables returning from Rampol ghat and crossed Chintapalli ghat. Accompanied by a few men Raju looted Rajavommangi on the 24th August from the Kantaram side, while the others stayed back at Kntaram itself. The party under Raju brought in six carbines, some boxes of ammunition and two swords.
They reached Gudem back with the looted arms and ammunition on the 27th August while in the second round the consumption reached 20 kunchams a day (1 kuncham roughly 12 kg)
Onjeri incident 3rd September :
As the rebel group rested at Onjeri they sighted five elephants moving from Gimili side. Three men were sent to intercept them but the men returned that the elephants were crossing the hills and getting down the ghat with heavy loads.
Sitarama Raju and his men swung into action immediately and went in pursuit of the elephants. Thirty police constables were with the elephants and Gam Mallu Dora and Muttam Lingam Dora asked their men to open fire. Both sides opened fire and under the cover of the fusillade the police escaped abandoning the stores and the elephants. One policeman was killed in the encounter. Right from the first attack on the police station at Chintapalli on the 22nd August, Raju and his men were on the offensive. Boxes brought on the elephants were broken open and the clothes, cumblies (warm blankets) and coats were distributed among the members of the group who were really in need of them. After a full days of trekking on 4th September they reached Gondipakalu, a hamlet of Lammasingi the next morning. From here they cut across the Dhar Hills. While the group was in Dhar hills Kolanki Kannadu , Rimala Sanyasi were sent to Rampolu, the biggest village in the vicinity, to collect food but were caught by the police. Kannadu said that there were about 60 men in the group, while Rimala Sanyasi stated that he ran away at Velagapalem when the men numbered 90. Rimala Sanyasi went as a messenger to the different villages and in his statement he gave out the names of the people willing to join the rebellion.
From peddavalasa three men of the Padalu family, from Saparathipalem, Guduthuru,Balachinna, Guduthuru Bangarayya, Vadalam Lingayya and Vadalam Gunnayya and the village munsif of Rampolu were all supporting the rebels. Kolanki Kannadu , Rimala Sanyasi were the first to be arrested within the two weeks of the start of the rebellion. Their statements were recorded on 8th September at Chintapalli. Mottadam Virayya Dora, who joined the rebels after his relese from Vommangi jail on 24th August, was captured near Gudem and taken to Chintapalli on 5th September 1922. He had been free hardly for a fortnight.
Kamayya, a sub- Inspector of police, Jeypore, who was on fituri duty from Rampolu to Saparathipalem and Peddavalasa on the 5th of September to investigate if the rebels had collected food at Tirumamidi and Lakhavarapupeta. While returning, the Sub- Inspector was caught by twenty men ast Saparathipalem,five of them rebels in police uniforms. The Sub-Inspector was taken to ghat area four miles from there. In his presencr Sitarama Raju informed his men that he planned to get ammunition from Malkangiri and cannon from Jeypore (Koraput district of present Orissa). Sub-Inspector Kamayya was asked to inform his superiors about this and was relesed.
Damanapalle ambush : September 1922-Police reinforcements :
Apparently the police got the message about the Onjeri incident and began searching the area for the rebels. The Assistant Superintendent of Police, Scott Coward,known for his courage proceeded from Chintapalli on the 8th September, with all the reserves at his command, police numbering above 300 and six mules carrying equipment and rations.He even traced a hideout of the rebels on the slopes of Dhar hills but lost track of the rebels themselves. He searched the Saraguda forests intensely for ten days but with no result.
The terrain was difficult and a tiger attacked a police vehicle on the Lammasingi road itself. A postman climbing ghat road within a mile of the town was killed by the tiger on 23rd September. Along with Scott Coward was Hayter, who had done good work in Malabar,and had served during World War of 1914 and in the Afghan war 1919. As temporary Assistant Superintendent of Police, he was assisting Scott Coward, who not only had a good knowledge of the agency but was courageous enough to rush into deep forests in pursuit of rebels.
Near, Damanapalli, the village munsif’s brother Kunderi Borram Naidu, informed the rebels about the police search party and their movements in the area. This enabled the rebels to lay ambush on Damanapalli ghat.
Visiting Damanapalli, the two British officers were returning to Serabhannapalem at the foot of the hills. The narrow track passed a steep ravine and the police force was proceeding single file. The rebels watched the advance guard from the jungle above the path and as soon as the guard passed, the two British officers at the head of the force were shot at and both the officers fell dead along with tow constables of the Bellary Special Force. One constable was killed and two others, a haed constable and lance naik wounded,while two others were missing. This was very unexpected event and the Inspector General of Police with a party of his men attempted to collect the dead bodies of the officers but came under heavy fire in which another police man was killed. The Inspector-General feeling helpless returned to Serabhannapalem and the bodies were brought in by the villagers later. The burial of Scott Coward and Hayter took place at Narasipatnam on 27th September 1922 while the injured police men died on the 3rd of the following month.
Along with the Agency Commissioner, the party left from Narasipatnam to Krishnadevipeta but was ambushed on the way and rocks were hurled from the hill tops making difficult for them to move out of the area. The government realized that the difficult terrain needed something more then ordinary police force. In the first six weeks, the police had lost two of the experienced British Officers and five policemen, while arms and ammunition from three police stations had been taken away and supplies to police and officers were intercepted on way to the hills.
Capture of Alluri Sita Rama Raju-The7th May 1924 :
The 7th of May 1924, goes down in history as a historic date since on this day one of the greatest freedom fighters of Andhra fell to the bullets of the British. On that day, the intelligence wing patrol with Sub-Inspector Alwar Nayudu and jamadar Kunchu Menon were camping under tamarind tree near Mumpa village. From there they saw a fair man with a beard pass by, at a distance of some 200 yards. They got suspicious that this man could,in all probability be the leader of the movement Alluri Sita Rama Raju. According to the local accounts it may be inferred that towards the end of the 2nd year of struggle,things became hot for the poor peasants who had joined the movement in the hope of regaining their rights over the forests, their right for podu cultivation and for grassing cattle etc. There was no cultivation for nearly two years and no time to collect and sell the forest produce as the whole place was infested with Police and fighting forces. The men were now tired of the whole affair as almost all their hiding places had been combed and they were away from their hearth and homes for long with no concrete benefits. Sitarama Raju himself might have understood this feeling of theirs and might have wanted to come into the open.
Another version says that these two police officers were camping at Jeedipalem when a few policemen came running and informed them that a man of fair complexion and close beard was going through the jungle. They all rushed in that direction and saw the man a hundred yards away. The fair man pretended to escape on seeing the police and a few rounds were fired, Kunchu Menon, in charge of the intelligence patrol describes the situation in an awkwardly worded memoranda dated 7th May 1924. On seeing them, Menon says, the man lay down, the police surrounded him who he was. The words put into the month of Sitarama Raju might have been meant to please British Officers. Obviously they might have been concocted as they were completely against the very nature of Raju. The fair man said that he was Raju,whome they wanted and begged for his life. May be some of the locals had even planned to hand him over the police to gain a reward and also to bring the long drawn struggle to an end but it may be proper to infer that Raju surrendered voluntarily. Kunchu Menon suggests that two more of the Malabar Special Police, Naik Choyikutti and constable Kunhunni Panikkar caught Raju and brought him to the camp. While they were coming,two men with guns were seen lingering around and were fired at.
Sitarama Raju was caught near Mampa and taken to the camp of Major Goodal at Koyyur. The police sources again try to present a picture which could not be true. A person in the helplessness who had voluntarily came down the hills could not have made an attempt to escape. They say that Raju tried to escape when he was freed to ease himself. Local reports say that he was shot dead after he was tied to a tree near Koyyur.
The local people of Koyyur even today show the particular tree to which Raju was tied. The dead body was put in a standing posture on a cot and taken in procession as a deterrent for others. The procession went to Chidipalem where also the body was recognized or rather identified as the Raju’s.
From there the cortege proceeded to Krishna Devipeta, one of the important basecamps of the government forces. People not only identified Raju but wept silently for fear of the police. The Deputy Tahsildar of Gudem,all the 50 muttadars and village munsif’s and the local villagers who knew Raju even before 1922 August all identified him; still the British officers had a lurking fear of mistaken identify. The body of Sitarama Raju was photographed before he was cremated at Krishna Devi Peta on the morning of 8th May.
Sitarama Raju sent his mother and brother to Narsapur in June,1922. In this connection Raju ion was addressed a letter written in English with pencil under the signature to Bastin, Deputy Tahsildar of Gudem Taluk informing him about the journey of his mother.
Raju’s Letter to Bastin
Yesterday after you sent word to me, asking my mother to get prepared for the journey I came to see you in the evening. When I returned home after taking leave of you,in the night, I learnt that my mother had not taken her meals from the morning because of fear and confusion, nor she prepared for the jouney. As such I had to stop my journey last night. To-day I am sure to send her by 10 or 11 a.m.
Hoping to be excused.
(Sd/) Sri Alluri Sree Rama Raju
After sending his mother and brother, Raju was completely free to devote all his time for making preparations to launch the revolt.Through his teachings to agency people, Raju kindled the fire of independence in the minds of agency people were just waiting for Raju’s order to revolt against the Government.
The much awaited day came as a surprise. As per the plan and arrangements the outbreak of revolt began with the attack on Chintapalle Police Station on 22 August,1922 under the leadership of Raju with his strong followers.
According to the station report a gang of rebels numbering about 300 armed with country guns,swords,spears,bows and arrows suddenly appeared at the station at about 5 p.m.overpowered the three constables and tied them to the pillars of the station. The detail of the ammunition lost was reported as eleven police muskets and 1,300 rounds of ammunition, five P.M.P swords, ten ammunition pouches,two leading chains,fourteen bayonets,nine cleaning rods etc
Next day ,23 August ,1922, at noon. Here also the Sub-Inspector was absent,having gone to visakhapatnam for audit training. They were easily overpowered by the rebels and rebels seized six muskets and 280 rounds of ammunition, fourteen bayonets, ten bayonet scabbards,five P.M.P swords, nine ammunition pouches and some uniform of the men in the lines.
The news of the fall of these police stations and subsequent risings created a sensation throughout the agency and altered the government, especially the operational machinery of the government. The rebels reached Gudem on the 28th and stopped there for the Dasara Puja.
On the 24th morning of September the rebels were halting near the Damanapalli ghat and a police party under Scott Coward and Hayter. The advanced guard of the police party was allowed to pass unmolested but when the two European Officers approched, fire was opened ad they were killed.
Raju camped with his followers within two miles of Krishnadevipeta. The rebels then proceeded to the Dhar Mattam, a sacred temple on the Dhar Hill, and from there crossing the Narsipatnam-Golugonda road in the Arilova forest towards south in the karaka hill on the 15th October,the rebels attacked Addatigala Police station but got nothing as all the arms and ammunition there had been previously removed as a precautionary measure.
On the 30th October 1922 the gang captured a police constable who was carrying (letters) and Raju made a remark in the Station House General Diary contained in the Tappal as ” only sixty men and 30 guns”
against the portion relating to himself. Raju sent several messages to Forbes challenging him to come out and fight but he made no attempt to attack the post.
On 6th December 1922 the rebels visited Dharmattam hill temple, Raju’s favorite place of worship.Then headed by Raju the gang left in the direction of Peddagaddapalem.On the morning of December 6, a part of Malabar police faced the rebels in the grove of tamarind trees.Firing took place from both the sides and fierce battle was fought and five rebels were killed and one was captured.On the same night between 11 to 11;45 another police party attacked the rebels at Lingapuram valley and the action lasted for an hour and ended at 12:45am.Due to inaccurate and spasmodic firing by the rebels, eight were dead and others were wounded. These two disasters caused a serious set back to Raju.
A proclamation was issued a reward of Rs.1,000/- for Raju’s capture, Rs.1000/- for the capture of each of the Gam brothers and Veeraiah Dora and Rs.50/- for the capture of any of other rebels.Later the award was raised to Rs.10,000/ for Raju.On 25 June 1923 at 1.00pm to answer the complaint for committing the offenses of attempting to wage a war against the king,committing dacoity,robbery with attempting to cause death or grievous hurt and murder under 121,121 A,122,143,145,149,395, and punishable under section 302 of the Indian Penal Code.
On September 2, a police party tried to capture Raju at Ramavaram but it was beaten back by the gang. The most important success for the Government was the capture of Mallu Dora, Raju’s Cheif Lieutenant on the night of september 17.
By the end of the year 1923, it became evident that the forces in the agency were not sufficient to deal with the rebels. The Government of Madras there fore obtained the services of Assam Rifles and these forces arrived in Narsipatnam on 27 January 1924.Major Goodall headed the Assam Rifles. The rebels continued their activity visiting villages for supplies.On April 17, T.G.Rutherford was appointed as special Commissioner in charge of the agency operations and measures taken by him had some effect. Punitive tax was imposed on certain areas and number of village officers and others who assisted the rebels were punished.
On May 6, a party of the Malabar Police while searching for the rebels near Maderu river fell in the rebels. The rebels opened fire and wounded a constable seriously. The 7th May proved to be a historic event in the history of the the agency rebellion and a fatal day for the heroic Raju,
That morning an intelligence patrol of the East Coast Special Police led by Jamadar Kunchu Menon happned to observe a fair bearded man passing by and guessing that he might be Raju,captured him. After capturing Raju, he brought Raju before Major Goodal of Assam Rifles. It was alleged that Raju was shot dead while trying to escape.
Local people who were the witnesses to the incident report that Raju was shot dead after he was tied to a tree near Koyyuru. The shot wounds caused on the chest of Raju as seen in the photograph released by the Government adds strength to the version of the local people.
After the death of Sitarama Raju, a number of tribals and hill men were captured and taken into custody. During combing operations by the police,some others were suspected and arrrested. On 12 May 1924
the agency Sessions judge delivered his judgement in the case of action war against Mallu Dhora and several others. Mallu Dhora was sentenced to death which was later commuted for life imprisonment, while others were sentenced to deportation for life to Andamans.
Sadly Raju got no support from the Congress, they in fact welcomed the suppression of the Rampa revolt and his assassination. The Swatantra weekly magazine, in fact claimed that people like Raju should be killed, and the Krishna Patrika said that police, people should be given more weapons to protect themselves from the revolutionaries. It is another thing that after his death the same magazines praised Raju as another Shivaji, Rana Pratap, while the Satyagrahi called him another George Washington. The best tribute to Raju was paid by Netaji Subash Chandra Bose.
Historian Sumit Sarkar had chronicled the heroic rebellion of Rama Raju in his book Modern India 1885-1947: “The most striking evidence of continued popular militancy came from the ever-restive semi-tribal Rampa region in north of the Godavari, scene of a veritable guerrilla war between August 1922 and May 1924 led by Sitarama Raju, – a truly remarkable man who has become a folk hero in Andhra.”
Founder of Advaita Vedanta, one the most prominent sub-schools of Indian Vedantic thought, Adi Shankaracharya is praised as the greatest philospher that India has produced.
Sri Jagadguru Adi Sankaracharya by Swami Sivananda
Chaos pervaded all through India in the matter of religion and philosophy. Sect after sect, such as Charvakas, Lokayathikas, Kapalikas, Shaktas, Sankhyas, Buddhas and Madhyamikas sprang up. The number of religions rose as high as seventy-two. There was fight amongst sects. There was no peace anywhere. Chaos and confusion reigned supreme. There was superstition and bigotry. Darkness prevailed over the once happy land of Rishis, sages and Yogins. The once glorious land of the Aryans was in a miserable state. Such was the state of the country at the time which just preceded the Avatara (incarnation) of Sankaracharya.
All are no doubt aware of the very important position assigned to Sankaracharya in the history of Indian philosophy. It can be affirmed, without any fear of contradiction, that Bharata Varsha would have ceased to be Bharata Varsha several centuries ago and would never have survived the murderous sword, the devastating fire and the religious intolerance of the successive invaders, if Sankara had not lived the life he lived and taught the lessons he taught. And those lessons are still pulsating in every cell and in every protoplasm of the true aspirant and the true Hindu.
Shankaracharya’s Birth & Childhood:
Sankara was born in a very poor family in the year 788 A.D. in a village named Kaladi, six miles to the east of Alwaye, Kerala. Kaladi is a railway station, on the Kochi-Shoranur rail link. Sankara was a Nambudiri Brahmin. Rajasekhara, a Zamindar (a rich landlord), built a Siva temple in Kaladi and formed an Agrahara for Brahmins who were in the service of the temple. Vidyadhiraja was doing Puja (worship) in the temple. He had only a son named Sivaguru. Sivaguru studied the Shastras and married at the proper age. He had no child. He and his wife Aryamba prayed to Lord Siva to bless them with a son. A son was born to them in the Vasanta Ritu or the spring season at noon, in the auspicious Abhijit Muhurta and under the constellation Ardhra. This son was Sankara.
Sivaguru died when Sankara was seven years old. Sankara had none to look after his education. His mother was an extraordinary woman. She took special care to educate her son in all the Shastras. Sankara’s Upanayana or thread ceremony was performed in his seventh year, after the death of his father. Sankara exhibited extraordinary intelligence in his boyhood. When he was only sixteen, he became a master of all the philosophies and theologies. He began to write commentaries on the Gita, the Upanishads and the Brahma Sutras when he was only sixteen years old. What a great marvel!
Sankara’s mother was consulting astrologers about horoscopes of suitable girls for her son’s marriage. But Sankara had a firm resolve to renounce the world and become a Sannyasin. Sankara’s mother was very much grieved that there would be no one to perform her funeral rites after her death. Sankara gave full assurance to his mother that he would always be ready to serve her at the death-bed and perform the usual funeral rites. Even then his mother was not satisfied.
One day, Sankara and his mother went to take bath in the river. Sankara plunged into the water and felt that a crocodile was dragging him by the foot. He shouted out to his mother at the top of his voice: “O dear mother! A crocodile is dragging me down. I am lost. Let me die peacefully as a Sannyasin. Let me have the satisfaction of dying as a Sannyasin. Give me your permission now. Let me take Apath-sannyasa”.
The mother immediately allowed him to take Sannyasa. Sankara took Apath-sannyasa (the adoption of Sannyasa when death is near) at once. The crocodile let him go unharmed. Sankara came out of the water as a nominal Sannyasin. He again repeated his promise to his mother. He left her under the care of his relatives and gave away his little property to them. He then proceeded to find out a Guru with a view to get himself formally initiated into the sacred order of Sannyasa.
In Search of a Guru:
Sankara met Swami Govindapada Acharya in a hermitage in Badrikashram (Badrinath) in the Himalayas and he prostrated at the teacher’s feet. Govinda asked Sankara who he was. Sankara replied: “O revered Guru! I am neither fire nor air nor earth nor water-none of these, but the Immortal Atma (Self) that is hidden in all names and forms”. He also said in the end: “I am the son of Sivaguru, a Brahmin of Kerala. My father died in my childhood. I was brought up by my mother. I have studied the Vedas and the Shastras under a teacher. I took Apath-sannyasa when a crocodile caught my foot while I was taking bath in the river. Kindly initiate me formally into the holy order of Sannyasa”.
Swami Govinda was very much pleased with the truthful narration given by Sankara. Having initiated him and invested him with the robe of a Sannyasin, Swami Govinda taught him the philosophy of Advaita which he himself had learnt from his Guru-Gaudapada Acharya. Sankara learnt all the philosophical tenets from his Guru Govindapada. Govinda asked Sankara to go to Kashi. Sankara proceeded to Kashi where he wrote all his famous commentaries on the Brahma Sutras, the Upanishads and the Gita and successfully met all the criticisms levelled against them. He then began to propagate his philosophy. Sankara had the greatest esteem for his Guru Govindapada and his Parama Guru or the teacher’s teacher, Gaudapada.
Sankara’s philosophical conquests are unique in the world. He had his triumphant tour all over India. He met the leaders of different schools of thought. He convinced them by arguments and established the supremacy and truth of the religion that he expounded in his commentaries. He went to all the celebrated seats of learning. He challenged the learned men to discussion, argued with them and converted them to his opinions and views. He defeated Bhatta Bhaskara and condemned his Bhashya (commentary) on the Vedanta Sutras. He then met Dandi and Mayura and taught them his philosophy. He then defeated in argument Harsha, author of Khandana Khanda Kadya, Abhinavagupta, Murari Misra, Udayanacharya, Dharmagupta, Kumarila and Prabhakara.
Sankara then proceeded to Mahishmati. Mandana Misra was the chief Pundit of the court of Mahishmati. Mandana was brought up in the Karma Mimamsa faith and so he had intense hatred for the Sannyasins. He was performing a Sraaddha ceremony when Sankara somehow dropped down there. Immediately Mandana Misra became very furious. An ugly conversation was started when the Brahmins, who were present there for dinner, interposed and pacified Mandana Misra. Then Sankara challenged Mandana to a religious controversy. Mandana agreed. Bharati who was the wife of Mandana Misra and who possessed scholarly erudition was appointed as the umpire. It was agreed beforehand that Sankara, if defeated, would become a householder and marry; and that Mandana, if defeated, would become a Sannyasin and receive the robe of a Sannyasin from the hands of his own wife. The controversy began in right earnest and continued for days without any interruption. Bharati did not sit and listen to their controversy. She threw two garlands, one each over the shoulders of each of the disputants, and said: “He whose garland begins to fade first should consider himself defeated”. She left the place and began attending to her household duties. The controversy went on for seventeen days. The garland of Mandana Misra began to fade first. Mandana Misra accepted his defeat and offered to become a Sannyasin and follow Sankara.
Bharati was an Avatara of Sarasvati, the Goddess of Learning. Once the sage Durvasa chanted the Vedas before Brahma and his wife in a big assembly. Durvasa committed a small mistake. Sarasvati laughed at it. Durvasa became enraged and gave a curse that she would take birth in the world. Hence Sarasvati had to take birth as Bharati.
Bharati now interposed and said to Sankara: “I am the other half of Mandana. You have defeated only one half of Mandana. Let us have a controversy”. Sankara objected to have controversy with a woman. Bharati quoted instances wherein there had been controversies with women. Sankara then agreed and this controversy also went on uninterruptedly for seventeen days. Bharati passed from one Shastra to another. At last she found out that she could not defeat Sankara. She decided to defeat him by means of the science of Kama Shastra.
Sankara asked Bharati to give him an interval of one month for his preparation to hold controversy with her in the science of Kama Shastra. She agreed. Sankara went to Kashi. He separated his astral body from his physical body by means of his Yogic powers and left his physical body in the hole of a big tree and asked his disciples to take care of that physical body. He then entered into the dead body of Raja Amaruka which was about to be cremated. The Raja rose up and all the people rejoiced at the astounding incident.
The ministers and queens soon found out that the revived Raja was a different person, with different qualities and thought. They realised that the soul of a great Mahatma had entered the body of their Raja. Therefore, messengers were sent out to search for a human body hidden somewhere in lonely forests and caves and to burn it when found. They thought that if they did so, the new Raja might remain with them for a long time.
Sankara was acquiring all the experience of love with his queens. Maya is very powerful. In the midst, of those queens, Sankara entirely forgot all about his promises to his disciples about his going back to them. The disciples began to search for him. They heard about the miraculous resurrection of Raja Amaruka. They immediately proceeded to the city and had an interview with the Raja. They sang a few philosophical songs which at once revived the memory of Sankara. The disciples immediately repaired to the place where the physical body of Sankara was kept hidden. By that time the messengers of the queen had found out the physical body and had just begun to set fire to it. The soul of Sankara just then entered his own body. Sankara prayed to Lord Hari to help him. There was a shower of rain immediately and that extinguished the flames.
Then Sankara returned to the residence of Mandana Misra. He resumed the old controversy and answered all the questions raised by Bharati satisfactorily. Mandana Misra gave all his property as a gift to Sri Sankara and Mandana was made to distribute it to the poor and the deserving. He then became a disciple of Sankara. Sankara initiated him into the holy order of Sannyasa and gave him the name of ‘Sureswara Acharya’. Sureswara Acharya was the first Sannyasin who took charge of the Sringeri Mutt. Bharati also accompanied Sankara to Sringeri and there she is worshipped even today.
Sankara ascended the seat of omniscience after inviting Vedic scholars from all parts of India and answering their numerous questions. Sankara, by vanquishing all the religious opponents of his day-and they belonged to no less than seventy-two different schools-and establishing the superiority of the Vedic Dharma, had become the Jagadguru of all.
Sankara’s success over the other religious sects was so complete that none of them have since been able to raise their head in the land. Most of them have disappeared altogether. After Sankara’s time, although a few Acharyas have appeared, none of them have been able to vanquish those who differed from them as Sankara did and establish unquestioned supremacy.
Mother’s Funeral Rites:
Sankara received news that his mother was seriously ailing. He left his disciples and proceeded to Kaladi alone. His mother was then bedridden. Sankara touched her feet in reverence. He praised Lord Hari. Hari’s messengers came. Sankara’s mother gave up her physical body and went along with those messengers to the abode of Hari.
Sankara encountered serious difficulties in performing the funeral rites of his mother. Usually, Sannyasins do not perform any of the rites or ceremonies which are enjoined on the householders. The Nambudiri Brahmins were all against Sankara. Sankara’s relatives also did not help him. They did not come forward to assist him even in carrying the dead body to the place of cremation and refused to give fire for igniting the funeral pyre. At last Sankara determined to perform the funeral rites all alone. As he could not carry the entire dead body, he cut it into pieces and removed the pieces one by one to the backyard of the house. He then made a pyre there of stems of plantain trees and set fire to it by his Yogic power. Sankara wanted to teach the Nambudiris a lesson. He then made the local chief issue an edict that a corner should be set apart in each Illam or house of the Nambudiri Brahmins to burn the dead of the family and that they should cut the dead body into parts and then burn the same. This practice continues even today amongst Nambudiri Brahmins.
Sankara then returned to Sringeri. From there he went out on a tour through the eastern coast with a large number of followers. He preached his Advaita philosphy wherever he went. He established the Govardhana Mutt at Puri. He went to Kancheepuram and attacked the Shaktas. He purified the temples. He won over to his side the rulers of the Chola and the Pandya kingdoms. He went to Ujjain and put down the atrocities of the Bhairavas who were shedding human blood. He then proceeded to Dwaraka and established a Mutt there. He then travelled along the course of the Ganges and held religious controversies with great personages.
Sankara proceeded to Kamarup-the present Guwahati-in Assam and held a controversy with Abhinava Gupta, the Shakta commentator, and won victory over him. Abhinava felt his defeat very keenly. He made Sankara suffer from a severe form of piles through black magic. Padmapada removed the evil effects of the black magic. Sankara became quite alright. He went to the Himalayas, built a Mutt at Joshi and a temple at Badri. He then proceeded to Kedarnath higher up in the Himalayas. He became one with the Linga in 820 A.D. in his thirty-second year.
In the north-west of the State of Mysore, nestling in the beautiful foot-hills of the Western Ghats, surrounded by virgin forests, lies the village of Sringeri and here Sankara established his first Mutt. The river Tunga-a branch of the river Tungabhadra-runs through the valley closely touching the walls of the temple; and its pure and limpid waters are as famous for drinking purposes as the waters of the Ganges are for bath (Ganga Snanam, Tunga Panam). Sringeri is a place of great sanctity and its beauty has to be seen to be appreciated. The Mutt is ‘still going strong’ as the phrase goes. The homage paid to the Mutt by countless aspirants and devotees is as much due to the greatness of illustrious men like Vidyaranya who have been at its head ever since its foundation as to the renown of the founder himself.
It may not be out of place to mention here that it took thirty years for the well-known Sanskrit professor Max Muller to translate the commentary on the Rig Veda, written by Vidyaranya, also known as Sayana. The learned professor, in his preface, says that not a single day passed in the thirty years without his devoting at least ten minutes on the translation. There is also a little interesting incident that when the manuscript was found to be illegible in some places, he got an authorised transcription from the first original still preserved in the Sringeri Mutt, through the influence of the then Maharaja of Mysore.
The famous holy shrine of Sri Sarada is an equal source of attraction to the devotees. Many are the Mutts and monasteries in India where holy men or their successors sit, and where Hindus from all parts of India gather, but none so great or so famous as Sringeri, the original seat of Adi Sankaracharya. The Sringeri Peetha is one of the oldest monasteries of the world flourishing for over twelve centuries now. It is the first of the four seats of learning established by Sankaracharya, the other three being Puri, Dwaraka and Joshi Mutt, each one of them representing one of the four Vedas of the Hindus.
Sankara placed his four eminent disciples (Sureswara Acharya, Padmapada, Hastamalaka and Trotakacharya) in charge of the Sringeri Mutt, Jagannath Mutt, Dwaraka Mutt and Joshi Mutt respectively. The most famous Sannyasin in the succession of Gurus of the Sringeri Mutt was, of course, Vidyaranya, the great commentator on the Vedas and the father of the dynasty of Vijayanagar. He was the Dewan of Vijayanagaram. He became a Sannyasin about 1331 A.D. The eleven Sannyasins before Vidyaranya were Sankaracharya, Viswarupa, Nityabodhaghana, Jnanaghana, Jnanottama, Jnana Giri, Simha Girisvara, Isvara Tirtha, Narasimha Tirtha, Vidya Sankara Tirtha and Bharati Krishna Tirtha.
The historic and sacred pontifical throne of the Sringeri Mutt is known as Vyakhyana Simhasana or seat of learning. Tradition has it that this seat was given to the great Sankara by Sarasvati, the Goddess of Learning, in appreciation of the philosopher’s vast scholarly erudition. Thirty-five Acharyas had sat on the pontifical throne before his present holiness in regular and uninterrupted succession.
Sankara organized ten definite orders of Sannyasins under the name ‘Dasanamis’ who add, at the end of their names, any one of the following ten suffixes: Sarasvati, Bharati, Puri (Sringeri Mutt); Tirtha, Asrama (Dwaraka Mutt); Giri, Parvata and Sagar (Joshi Mutt); Vana and Aranya (Govardhana Mutt).
The Paramahamsa represents the highest of these grades. It is possible to become a Paramahamsa by a long course of Vedantic study, meditation and Self- realisation. The Ativarnashramis are beyond caste and order of life. They dine with all classes of people. Sankara’s Sannyasins are to be found all over India.
Sankara was going along the street one day with his pupils to take bath in the Ganges when he met a Chandala who was also passing along the street with his dogs by his side. The disciples of Sankara shouted and asked the Chandala to clear off the road. The Chandala asked Sankara: “O, venerable Guru! You are a preacher of Advaita Vedanta and yet you make a great difference between man and man. How can this be consistent with your teaching of Advaitism? Is Advaita only a theory?”. Sankara was very much struck by the intelligent query of the Chandala. He thought within himself, “Lord Siva has assumed this form just to teach me a lesson”. He composed then and there five Slokas called the ‘Manisha Panchaka’. Every Sloka ends thus: “He who learnt to look on the phenomena in the light of Advaita is my true Guru, be he a Chandala or be he a Brahmin”.
In Kashi, a student was cramming the Sutras in Sanskrit grammar. He was repeating again and again “Dukrin karane, Dukrin karane….”. Sankara heard it and was struck by the perseverance of the boy. He immediately sang a small poem, the famous Bhaja Govindam song, in order to teach the uselessness of such studies in the matter of the liberation of the soul. The meaning of the song is: “Worship Govinda, worship Govinda, worship Govinda, O fool! When you are about to die, the repetition of these Sanskrit Sutras will not save you”.
Once some mischief-mongers offered meat and liquor to Sankara. Sankara touched those items with his right hand. The meat turned into apples and the liquor into milk.
A Kapalika came to Sankara and begged for his head as a gift. Sankara consented and asked the Kapalika to take his head when he was alone and absorbed in meditation. The Kapalika was just aiming with a big sword to sever the head of Sankara. Padmapada, the devoted disciple of Sankara came, caught hold of the arm of the Kapalika and killed him with his knife. Padmapada was a worshipper of Lord Narasimha. Lord Narasimha entered the body of Padmapada and killed the Kapalika.
Sankara wrote Bhashyas or commentaries on the Brahma Sutras, the Upanishads and the Gita. The Bhashya on the Brahma Sutras is called Sareerik Bhasya. Sankara wrote commentaries on Sanat Sujatiya and Sahasranama Adhyaya. It is usually said, “For learning logic and metaphysics, go to Sankara’s commentaries; for gaining practical knowledge, which unfolds and strengthens devotion, go to his works such as Viveka Chudamani, Atma Bodha, Aparoksha Anubhuti, Ananda Lahari, Atma-Anatma Viveka, Drik-Drishya Viveka and Upadesa Sahasri”. Sankara wrote innumerable original works in verses which are matchless in sweetness, melody and thought.
Sankara’s supreme Brahman is Nirguna (without the Gunas), Nirakara (formless), Nirvisesha (without attributes) and Akarta (non-agent). He is above all needs and desires. Sankara says, “This Atman is self-evident. This Atman or Self is not established by proofs of the existence of the Self. It is not possible to deny this Atman, for it is the very essence of he who denies it. The Atman is the basis of all kinds of knowledge. The Self is within, the Self is without, the Self is before and the Self is behind. The Self is on the right hand, the Self is on the left, the Self is above and the Self is below”.
Satyam-Jnanam-Anantam-Anandam are not separate attributes. They form the very essence of Brahman. Brahman cannot be described, because description implies distinction. Brahman cannot be distinguished from any other than He.
The objective world-the world of names and forms-has no independent existence. The Atman alone has real existence. The world is only Vyavaharika or phenomenal.
Sankara was the exponent of the Kevala Advaita philosophy. His teachings can be summed up in the following words:
Brahma Satyam Jagat Mithya
Jeevo Brahmaiva Na Aparah
Brahman alone is real, this world is unreal; the Jiva is identical with Brahman.
Sankara preached Vivarta Vada. Just as the snake is superimposed on the rope, this world and this body are superimposed on Brahman or the Supreme Self. If you get a knowledge of the rope, the illusion of the snake will vanish. Even so, if you get a knowledge of Brahman, the illusion of the body and the world will vanish.
Sankara is the foremost among the master-minds and the giant souls which Mother India has produced. He was the expounder of the Advaita philosophy. Sankara was a giant metaphysician, a practical philosopher, an infallible logician, a dynamic personality and a stupendous moral and spiritual force. His grasping and elucidating powers knew no bounds. He was a fully developed Yogi, Jnani and Bhakta. He was a Karma Yogin of no mean order. He was a powerful magnet.
There is not one branch of knowledge which Sankara has left unexplored and which has not received the touch, polish and finish of his superhuman intellect. For Sankara and his works, we have a very high reverence. The loftiness, calmness and firmness of his mind, the impartiality with which he deals with various questions, his clearness of expression-all these make us revere the philosopher more and more. His teachings will continue to live as long as the sun shines.
Sankara’s scholarly erudition and his masterly way of exposition of intricate philosophical problems have won the admiration of all the philosophical schools of the world at the present moment. Sankara was an intellectual genius, a profound philosopher, an able propagandist, a matchless preacher, a gifted poet and a great religious reformer. Perhaps, never in the history of any literature, a stupendous writer like him has been found. Even the Western scholars of the present day pay their homage and respects to him. Of all the ancient systems, that of Sankaracharya will be found to be the most congenial and the most easy of acceptance to the modern mind.
When Shankaracharya decided to enter ‘samadhi,’ the foremost disciple of Shankara, requested that the essentials of his teaching may be summarized and given to them.
Shankaracharya then said the Dasa Shlokas, or ten verses, which elaborated the omniscience, omnipotence and omnipresence of Brahman – the core concept of Hinduism (Sanatana Dharma). Today as world celebrates, Adi Shankaracharya jayanti, take a look at those ten verses
1. The five elements do no express my real nature; I am changeless and persist forever.
2. I am above castes and creeds. I am seen when ‘maya’ is removed, and do not need concentration or worship as shown in Yoga Sutras.
3. I have no parents, I need no Vedas as proclaimed in the scriptures, no sacrifices, no pilgrimages. I am the eternal witness.
4. All the teachings of various religions and philosophies do no reveal my true nature and are but shallow views of my deep being.
5. I pervade the whole universe and am above, in the middle and below, in all directions.
6. I am colourless, formless, light being my form.
7. I have no teacher, scripture or any disciples, nor do I recognize Thou or I, or even the universe and am changeless and the absolute knowledge.
8. I am neither awake, in deep sleep nor dreaming, but above consciousness with which the three are associated. All these are due to ignorance and I am beyond that.
9. I pervade everything, everywhere and the eternal reality and self-existent. The whole universe depends on me and become nothing without me.
10. I cannot be called one, for that implies two, which is not. I am neither isolated nor non-isolated, neither am I empty or full.
A cold-blooded genocide shook up India 100 years ago, and still send tremors through those who know what exactly happened at the Jallianwala Bagh, Amritsar, on April 13, 1919.
A cold-blooded genocide that led to the bloodiest Baisakhi ever. This is probably the most simple and honest way of describing what happened at Jallianwala Bagh in Amritsar, Punjab on April 13, 1919. The ground stands witness to the inhuman atrocities of the British Empire.
Here’s what happened at Jallianwala Bagh that day
On Sunday, April 13, 1919, the day of Baisakhi — one of the largest festivals of the Sikh community — a peaceful crowd gathered at the ceremonial ground from the nearby Golden Temple to celebrate
As many as 90 British Indian Army soldiers, commanded by Colonel Reginald Dyer, opened fire at over 20,000 unarmed men, women and children without any warning or order to disperse the mob
Dyer marched his men to a raised bank and ordered them to kneel and fire at the entire Jallianwala Bagh
He ordered his soldiers to reload their rifles several times and they were ordered to shoot and killHe continued shooting, approximately 1650 rounds in all, until all ammunition was exhausted.
The garden was closed on all sides by houses and buildings and had a few narrow entrances, most of which were kept permanently lockedThere was just one main entrance which was relatively wider, but it was guarded by troops backed by armoured vehicles — loaded with machine guns — since the vehicles were unable to enter through the narrow entrance
Apart from the many deaths due to direct shooting, a number of people died from stampedes or by suffocation from jumping into a solitary well on the Jallianwala ground to escape bullets
The dead couldn’t be moved from there since a curfew had been declared and many more were killed during the night
Facts about the Jallianwala Bagh Massacre every Indian must knowThe number of deaths caused by the shooting is disputed. However, a plaque set up after independence in the monument at the sight states that 120 bodies were pulled out of the well
Back in his headquarters, General Dyer reported to his superiors that he had been “confronted by a revolutionary army”
In a telegram sent to Dyer, British Lieutenant-Governor of Punjab, Sir Michael O’ Dwyer wrote:
“Your action is correct. Lieutenant Governor approves.”
Upon the Jallianwala Bagh Massacre enquiry, Dyer declared that it was a necessary measure as Punjab, along with Bengal, was the hub of anti-British rebels and anti-empire movements and that the firing was “not to disperse the meeting but to punish the Indians for disobedience”
The heinous incident of Jallianwala Bagh triggered a nationwide uproar
Rabindranath Tagore rejected his knighthoodGandhi called for nationwide protests and generations awakened to the tune of independence
Even the British nationals were furious about the MassacreColonel Dyer was dropped from the House of Commons
Photo :Reginald Dyer, The Butcher of Amritsar
However, Dyer was lauded for his ‘feat’ and honoured at the House of Lords in England
“A 100 years ago today, our beloved freedom fighters were martyred at Jallianwala Bagh. A horrific massacre, a stain on civilisation, that day of sacrifice can never be forgotten by India. At this solemn moment, we pay our tribute to the immortals of Jallianwala #PresidentKovind,” President Kovind tweeted.
As many as 1650 rounds were fired, 500 people were killed and more than 1200 wounded with ten minutes. Bhagat Singh visited Jallianwala Bagh on the next day of this massacre and collected a packet full of blood soaked soil which be kept at his home.
“Today, when we observe 100 years of the horrific Jallianwala Bagh massacre, India pays tributes to all those martyred on that fateful day. Their valour and sacrifice will never be forgotten. Their memory inspires us to work even harder to build an India they would be proud of,” the Prime Minister wrote on Twitter.
Hundred years on, the United Kingdom is yet to give a full apology for the gruesome attack on unarmed protesters in Amritsar in 1919.
However, British Prime Minister Theresa May had recently said that the United Kingdom “deeply regrets” the 1919 massacre and called it a “shameful scar” on the British-Indian history.
“The tragedy of Jallianwalla Bagh in 1919 is a shameful scar on the British-Indian history. As her Majesty, the Queen said before visiting Jallianwala Bagh 1997, it is a distressing example of our past history with India. We deeply regret what happened and the suffering caused,” May had said at the British Parliament earlier this week.
United we grieve: On the 50th anniversary of the massacre, the then Prime Minister Indira Gandhi led a march of thousands of people who laid wreaths at the Jallianwala Bagh memorial in Amritsar | Photo Credit: PIB
The Jallianwala Bagh Massacre ignited the first spark of the Indian freedom movement, which led to the fall of the British empire.
Sepoy Mangal Pandey shot the first bullet of 1857 Indian mutiny in the barracks of Barrackpur near Calcutta against British Empire.
This was the starting of the mutiny.
A hundred and ninety-two years ago, on 19 July 1827, India’s first freedom fighter was born. He was the same person, who evoked resentment on a national level, by leading Indians against the British in what was our First War of Independence.
Born in Nagwa district, Uttar Pradesh, Mangal Pandey’s childhood could be described as mediocre at best.
As a result of his socioeconomic status, he was compelled to join the British East India Company at the age of 22 as a sepoy in the 34th Regiment of the Bengal Native Infantry (BNI).
By that point, it must be remembered that the British had subjugated Indians: farmers lost their land to taxes, artisans were left poverty-stricken after the emergence of British factories, commoner were left to starve. The British hegemony over Indians had become a reality by then. And so, there was an inherent danger in the people of India.
Having reluctantly served the British for some years, Mangal Pandey was left very upset with the arrival of a new type of bullet cartridge used in the Enfield P-53 rifle. The cause for his anger was driven by the ongoing word that the cartridge was greased with animal fat and especially those of pig and cow, which neither Hindus nor Muslims consumed.
For the cover to be removed, the cartridges had to be removed and it was abhorred by both the Hindu and Muslim soldiers in the army. The general word about the British intentionally doing it, evoked even more anger in Pandey. What peaked the discontent was that the Commandant of the 34th Bengal Native Infantry was a well known Christian preacher, who would often put down other faiths in the attempt to convert people of those religions. This added to the larger question regarding the British’s attempts to undermine the traditional Indian society.
While many did tell him that a gradual attack on the British after consolidation would make sense, Pandey felt the need to act immediately. On the 29th of March 1857, he led the fight against the British by doing his best to motivate every person involved. He went on to dominate one officer after another- right from Hughson to Baugh.
“It is for our religion. From biting these (greased) cartridges we will lose our religion”, he told the soldiers.
It is worth noting that despite the known oppression that took place, the compulsion to bite something that (he believed) contained beef, was what triggered his anger. That fact on its own would imply that he placed his Hindu belief system on the highest pedestal, and that is what translated to become the love for his country.
However, before the nation could display its appreciation for the cause, he was betrayed by a compatriot named Shaikh Paltu, who posed himself to be on the same side as Pandey since they lay on the same battalion. Mistaking Paltu’s identity, Pandey had let him get closer, only to find himself being pulled from the back.
Being flanked by Paltu was a challenge for Pandey because even though he was able to drive him away, he was left very tired when faced with a fresh battalion of soldiers, by noon. As a result of there being no room to fight, Pandey felt the need to shoot himself in the chest.
He soon found himself in the military hospital and was killed by the British 10 days before his hanging was sentenced by the military court. Thus, ended the life of whom we call ‘Amar Shaheed Mangal Pandey’.
The word about the rebellion spread everywhere and inspired millions to fight against the British- ranging across different places including Agra, Ambala, Meerut, Delhi. It was the precise uniting factor India had needed in motivation for independence. Many patriots were ignited by Pandey’s sacrifice and love for his country, which was triggered by the regard for his Hindu Dharma and went on to strive for the freedom of their countrymen.
The true history of India includes thousands of atrocities on millions of Indian people during the British Rule, one among the biggest atrocities includes, creating the artificial famine in India. Lets shed our light on The Great Famine of India also called as the Southern India famine of 1876–1878 or the Madras famine of 1877.
It began in 1876 after an intense drought resulting in crop failure in the Deccan Plateau. Even though there was plenty of crop and grains stored, it was exported by the British rule which cited Malthusian theory of population control. It affected south and southwestern India (the British presidencies of Madras and Bombay, and the princely states of Mysore and Hyderabad) for a period of two years. In its second year famine also spread northward to some regions of the Central Provinces and the North-Western Provinces, and to a small area in the Punjab. The famine ultimately covered an area of 670,000 square kilometres (257,000 sq mi) and caused distress to a population totalling 58,500,000. The death toll from this famine is estimated to be in the range of 5.5 million people.
In part, the Great Famine may have been caused by an intense drought resulting in crop failure in the Deccan Plateau. It was part of a larger pattern of drought and crop failure across India, China, South America and parts of Africa caused by an interplay between a strong El Niño and an active Indian Ocean Dipole that led to between 19 and 50 million deaths.
The regular export of grain by the colonial government continued; during the famine the viceroy, Lord Lytton, oversaw the export to England of a record 6.4 million hundredweight (320,000 tons) of wheat, made the region more vulnerable. The cultivation of alternate cash crops, in addition to the commodification of grain, played a significant role in the events.
The famine occurred at a time when the colonial government was attempting to reduce expenses on welfare. Earlier, in the Bihar famine of 1873–74, severe mortality had been avoided by importing rice from Burma. The Government of Bengal and its Lieutenant-Governor, Sir Richard Temple, were criticised for excessive expenditure on charitable relief. Sensitive to any renewed accusations of excess in 1876, Temple, who was now Famine Commissioner for the Government of India, insisted not only on a policy of laissez faire with respect to the trade in grain, but also on stricter standards of qualification for relief and on more meagre relief rations.Two kinds of relief were offered: “relief works” for able-bodied men, women, and working children, and gratuitous (or charitable) relief for small children, the elderly, and the indigent.
The insistence on more rigorous tests for qualification, however, led to strikes by “relief workers” in the Bombay presidency. In January 1877, Temple reduced the wage for a day’s hard work in the relief camps in Madras and Bombay this ‘Temple wage’ consisted of 450 grams (1 lb) of grain plus one anna for a man, and a slightly reduced amount for a woman or working child, for a “long day of hard labour without shade or rest.” The rationale behind the reduced wage, which was in keeping with a prevailing belief of the time, was that any excessive payment might create ‘dependency’ (or “demoralisation” in contemporaneous usage) among the famine-afflicted population.
Temple’s recommendations were opposed by some officials, including William Digby and the physician W. R. Cornish, Sanitary Commissioner for the Madras Presidency. Cornish argued for a minimum of 680 grams (1.5 lb) of grain and, in addition, supplements of vegetables and protein, especially if the individuals were performing strenuous labour in the relief works.However, Lytton supported Temple, who argued that “everything must be subordinated to the financial consideration of disbursing the smallest sum of money.”
In March 1877 the provincial government of Madras increased the ration halfway towards Cornish’s recommendations, to 570 grams (1.25 lb) of grain and 43 grams (1.5 oz) of protein in the form of daal (pulses). Meanwhile, many more people had succumbed to the famine. In other parts of India, such as the United Provinces, where relief was meagre, the resulting mortality was high. In the second half of 1878, an epidemic of malaria killed many more who were already weakened by malnutrition.
By early 1877, Temple proclaimed that he had put “the famine under control”. Digby noted that “a famine can scarcely be said to be adequately controlled which leaves one-fourth of the people dead.”
All in all, the Government of India spent Rs. 8 1/30 million in relieving 700 million units (1 unit = relief for 1 person for 1 day) in British India and, in addition, another Rs. 7.2 million in relieving 72 million units in the princely states of Mysore and Hyderabad. Revenue (tax) payments to the amount of Rs. 6 million were either not enforced or postponed until the following year, and charitable donations from Great Britain and the colonies totaled Rs. 8.4 million. However, this cost was minuscule per capita; for example, the expenditure incurred in the Bombay Presidency was less than one-fifth of that in the Bihar famine of 1873–74, which affected a smaller area and did not last as long.
Famine in Mysore State
Two years before the famine of 1876, heavy rain destroyed ragi crops (a type of millet) in Kolar and Bangalore. Scant rainfall the following year resulted in drying up of lakes, affecting food stock. As a result of the famine, the population of the state decreased by 874,000 (in comparison with the 1871 census).
Sir Richard Temple was sent by the British India Government as Special Famine Commissioner to oversee the relief works of the Mysore government. To deal with the famine, the government of Mysore started relief kitchens. A large number of people journeyed to Bangalore, when relief was available. These people had to work on the Bangalore-Mysore railway line in exchange for food and grains. The Mysore government imported large quantities of grain from the neighbouring British ruled Madras Presidency. Grazing in forests was allowed temporarily, and new tanks were constructed and old tanks repaired. The Dewan of Mysore State, C. V. Rungacharlu, in his Dasara speech estimated the cost to the state at 160 lakhs, with the state incurring a debt of 80 lakhs.
The mortality in the famine was in the range of 5.5 million people. The excessive mortality and the renewed questions of “relief and protection” that were asked in its wake, led directly to the constituting of the Famine Commission of 1880 and to the eventual adoption of the Indian Famine Codes. After the famine, a large number of agricultural labourers and handloom weavers in South India emigrated to British tropical colonies to work as indentured labourers in plantations. The excessive mortality in the famine also neutralized the natural population growth in the Bombay and Madras presidencies during the decade between the first and second censuses of British India in 1871 and 1881 respectively. The famine lives on in the Tamil and other literary traditions. A large number of Kummi folk songs describing this famine have been documented.
The Great Famine had a lasting political impact on events in India. Among the British administrators in India who were unsettled by the official reactions to the famine and, in particular by the stifling of the official debate about the best form of famine relief, were William Wedderburn and A. O. Hume. Less than a decade later, they would found the Indian National Congress and, in turn, influence a generation of Indian nationalists. Among the latter were Dadabhai Naoroji and Romesh Chunder Dutt for whom the Great Famine would become a cornerstone of the economic critique of the British Raj
Note: 5.5 million in British territory. Mortality unknown for princely states. Total famine mortality estimates vary from 6.1 to 10.3 million.
National Science Day is celebrated across India on February 28. Famous Indian scientist Sir Chandrasekhara Venkata Raman or CV Raman discovered the Raman Effect on this day in 1928. For his discovery, Sir CV Raman was awarded the Nobel Prize in Physics in 1930. In honour of this discovery and as a mark of tribute to the scientist, National Science Day was marked for the first time on February 28, 1987. For the past 32 years, every 28 February has been celebrated as a remembrance of CV Raman’s contribution to science and the Indian scientific community.
Sir C V Raman pointing to information on a large blackboard as he gives a lecture, 5 August 1958. (Keystone Features/Hulton Archive/Getty Images)
Only two of his associates – K S Krishnan and S C Sirkar – were involved in the work on the Raman Effect, which involves scattering of light.
In his private diaries, K S Krishnan had recorded details of the Raman’s work relating to the discovery of Raman effect covering the period from February 5 to 28, 1928. Details of these diaries were published only after his death. Then, years later a new book on the life and science of S C Sirkar, written by Rajinder Singh, another leading historian of science, brought to light the contribution of Sirkar to the work on Raman Effect.
According to the new book, Sirkar was the first person whom C V Raman asked to evaluate the first ever ‘Raman spectrum’ of benzene.
This year the National Science Day will be celebrated as the International Year of the Periodic Table of chemical elements and the Giant Metrewave Radio Telescope will host a two-day exhibition on Thursday at Khodad in Narayangaon, aroun 80 km from Pune.
The GMRT has been organising this exhibition for the past 19 years. It is the world’s largest telescope set up by the National Centre for Radio Astrophysics (NCRA).
What is Raman Effect ?
Raman effect, change in the wavelength of light that occurs when a light beam is deflected by molecules. When a beam of light traverses a dust-free, transparent sample of a chemical compound, a small fraction of the light emerges in directions other than that of the incident (incoming) beam. Most of this scattered light is of unchanged wavelength. A small part, however, has wavelengths different from that of the incident light; its presence is a result of the Raman effect.
The phenomenon is named for Indian physicist Sir Chandrasekhara Venkata Raman, who first published observations of the effect in 1928. (Austrian physicist Adolf Smekal theoretically described the effect in 1923. It was first observed just one week before Raman by Russian physicists Leonid Mandelstam and Grigory Landsberg; however, they did not publish their results until months after Raman.)
Raman scattering is perhaps most easily understandable if the incident light is considered as consisting of particles, or photons (with energy proportional to frequency), that strike the molecules of the sample. Most of the encounters are elastic, and the photons are scattered with unchanged energy and frequency. On some occasions, however, the molecule takes up energy from or gives up energy to the photons, which are thereby scattered with diminished or increased energy, hence with lower or higher frequency. The frequency shifts are thus measures of the amounts of energy involved in the transition between initial and final states of the scattering molecule.
The Raman effect is feeble; for a liquid compound the intensity of the affected light may be only 1/100,000 of that incident beam. The pattern of the Raman lines is characteristic of the particular molecular species, and its intensity is proportional to the number of scattering molecules in the path of the light. Thus, Raman spectra are used in qualitative and quantitative analysis.
The energies corresponding to the Raman frequency shifts are found to be the energies associated with transitions between different rotational and vibrational states of the scattering molecule. Pure rotational shifts are small and difficult to observe, except for those of simple gaseous molecules. In liquids, rotational motions are hindered, and discrete rotational Raman lines are not found. Most Raman work is concerned with vibrational transitions, which give larger shifts observable for gases, liquids, and solids. Gases have low molecular concentration at ordinary pressures and therefore produce very faint Raman effects; thus liquids and solids are more frequently studied.
The observation of the vibrational Raman spectrum of a molecule depends on a change in the molecules.
This year the theme for the National Science Day is: Science for people and people for science. Last year’s theme was “Science and Technology for a sustainable future.”
For famous quotes of Sir CV Raman, please follow this link.
Awards and Recognition : Raman was honoured with a large number of honorary doctorates and memberships of scientific societies.
Professor C V Raman was also the first to investigate the harmonic nature of the sound of the Indian drums such as the Tabla and the Mridanga. In 1930, for the first time in its history, an Indian scholar, educated entirely in India has received highest honour in science, the ‘Nobel Prize’ in physics. In 1943, he established the ‘Raman Research Institute’, near Bangalore.
His discovery of the ‘Raman Effect’ made a very distinctive contribution to Physics. He was also conferred the title of ‘Bharat Ratna’ in 1954. The ‘Raman Effect’ was a demonstration of the ‘Collision’ effect of light bullets (Photons) passing through a transparent medium, whether solid, liquid or gaseous. Raman was also awarded the ‘Lenin Peace Prize’ in 1957.
In 1998, the American Chemical Society and Indian Association for the Cultivation of Science recognised Raman’s discovery as an International Historic Chemical Landmark.
India celebrates National Science Day on 28 February of every year to commemorate the discovery of the Raman effect in 1928.Postal stamps featuring Raman were issued in 1971 and 2009.