Speed of Light
contributed by Dr. Deen B Chandora
Ancient Vedic sages and seers knew the Universe contracts and then expands continuously. Astronomy and the other sciences were the part of life as taught by the Vedas. Sayanacharya, in his commentary on Rig veda, 1/50/40, describes the velocity of light, sun light travels 2202 Yojanas* in a half Nimea, for example 8/75 second (S. R. N. Murthy). Yojana* is defined in the table as follows:
One Yojana equals approximately nine miles, and light travels 2202 Yojana in half a Nimesa (8/75 second). Therefore, the speed of light equals 187,670 miles per second. The modern speed of light is 186,281.7 miles per second. In 1887, Michelson and Morley conducted experiments and determined that the velocity of light is 186,281.7 miles per second. Modern science has calculated a light year as the distance light travels in a year which is 5,874,579,691,000 miles, but who can remember that? In the ancient Vedic system of education called Gurukul, a Guru, or a resident teacher, taught students the tricks of memorizing the mathematical tables and other calculations. This author was also exposed to such institutions, called Pathsal, where one had to memorize multiplication and other tables including fractions up to the table of one hundred.
Dr. Deen B Chandora
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