*Amazing facts about India.*

India is a country wheremathematicsis encoded in everything - from divinity to nature and knowledge to the Vedas and music.

Indian philosophy has embraced the concept of zero or*Shunya*at one end of the spectrum too*Anantha*, infinite, at the other end. The global spread of these ideas enabled intellectuals around the world to advance science.

Albert Einstein once said, "We owe much to the Native Americans who taught us to count, without whom no worthwhile scientific discoveries could have been made."

What are these revolutionary concepts? Bharath Gyan, a passionate research initiative, meticulously assembles the pieces, searching among lost remains to keep the glorious past alive and known. Here are some lesser known facts:

## The Power of Zero

India gave the world the concept and symbol of zero. Zero derives its origin etymologically from the Indian word,*Shunyam.*

Roman numerals had no shape, number, or letter for zero. The concept of zero was unknown to Europeans until the 16th century. When it was first introduced to Europe in the early Renaissance, everyone in Europe was puzzled by this number. Some made fun of it, others called it the work of the devil. A French writer wrote: "Zero is a sign that creates confusion and difficulty."

After much resistance, the zero was slowly accepted. Another earlier piece of evidence, in the form of a dot, has been traced to a stone inscription from AD 683 in Cambodia, originally reported in 1930 by French explorer Georges Coedes. It is one of the early visible evidence of the use of null in the form of a dot. This inscription stands as evidence of the spread of the knowledge of the zero from India to the east.

## Mutt & Mathe

In India it was named the place where intellectuals gathered to think about the various problems of the universe*mathematics*(pronounced as mutt). This is very similar to the word mathematics, which comes from the Greek word mathema, meaning "what one learns", "what one learns to know". This word mathem is derived*Manthano, Mathaino*which means "to learn".

## The decimal system is getting the world's attention

Medhatithi was a 10th-century commentator on the ancient Indian texts containing the*Puranas.*He introduced the concept of decimals. Aryabhata, a pioneering mathematician and astronomer, introduced an alphanumeric method to uniquely represent the 10 digits of the decimal system.

In the ancient western world, the highest terminologies used in counting were:

* Uncountable for the Greeks (10,000 i.e. 10 to the power of 4)

* Mille for the Romans (1000 i.e. 10 to the power of 3)

The Indians followed a strict system*the previous one*, which is 10 followed by 15 zeros or 10 to the power of 16, was itself a common number.

The world began to welcome India's decimal system. Al-Khwarizmi, a Baghdad mathematician who died in 850 AD, wrote the first book on Arabic numerals entitled “*About Indian Numbers*.” Here he described the Indian arithmetic technique based on numbers in decimal notation. This book was read by the medieval European mathematician Adelard, who translated the book in the 12th century AD as "*the given number*.“

Al-Biruni, the Persian chronicler, in his work*Kitab-ul-Hind*written in 1030 AD extolled the Indian numeral system. He also gave an example of how a large number like 523 622 198 443 682 439 would have been expressed in India. The description of this number would sound like a*Schloka*but a scientific text.

“The debt of the western world to India in the field of mathematics cannot be overstated. Most of the great discoveries and inventions of which Europe is so proud would have been impossible without a developed mathematical system in India, and this in turn would have been impossible if Europe had been shackled by the unwieldy system of Roman numerals.”

- A.L. Basham, noted historian and author of "*The miracle that was India*”

## The concept of infinity

In India a coiled snake,*Anantha*on which Lord Vishnu rests represents infinity.*Anantha*means "that which is immeasurable, without end".

The drawing of*Anantha*was widespread in sculpture, painting, poetry, literature, handicrafts and textiles, motifs throughout medieval India. India regularly exports textile goods called indiae*Anantha*Motifs to Arabia in the years 1415 and 1600, which also traveled to Europe.

Come across this drawing*Anantha*From the textile motifs, the British mathematician John Wallis most likely derived today's mathematical symbol for infinity in 1655.

"Ancient India recognized infinity while other civilizations frowned."

- Prof. Frits Staal, emeritierter Professor, University of California, Berkeley, USA

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In Indian thought, everything and nothing is the same. Before the creation of the universe, the five primordial elements were inside*Hiranyagarbha*, A*bindu*or point, the mark of zero.

the moment of the big bang,*Brahmand Visphotak*took place, the Cosmic Egg burst open and all elements spat out - from nothingness to immeasurable infinity.

Everyday practices in India elucidated the concept of infinity through prayer and ritual. Certain verses in the*Satpataha Brahmana*And*Brihadaranyaka Upanishad*spoke of understanding infinity. Infinity derives from infinity. If you take infinity from infinity, only infinity remains.

## The expert in encryption and coding

Over 2,000 years ago, the Native Americans had already developed a way of linking numbers and the alphabet system. The result was a code table called the*Katapayadi-Sutra*where each alphabet arranged in a given array is assigned a numeric value. The*Katapayadi*System can be traced back to early part of the first millennium AD.

The alphabets were lined up in such a way that by replacing each letter of the verse with the corresponding number, one could retrieve the number hidden in the verse.

For example, consonants in verse,*"Gopi bhagya madhuvrata, shrngiso dadhi sandhiga, khala jivita khatava, gala hala rasandara."*

Can be decoded with*Katapayadi*to give way to the table

ga=3, pa=1, bha=4, ya=1, ma=5, dhu=9, ra=2, tha=6, shru=5, ga=3, sho=5, da=8, dhi= 9, sa=7, dha=9, ga=3, kha=2, la=3, ji=8, vi=4, ta=6, kha=2, ta=6, va=4, ga=3, la=3, ha=8, la=3, ra=2, sa=7, da=9, ra=2

d.h. 31415926535897932384626433832792.

Incidentally, this is the value of the first 31 digits with no decimals for Pi.

The ancient sages developed recitation techniques by coding mathematics. The verses were broken down into parts which were recombined and recited in various patterns.

This mathematically constructed exercise by Veda Vyasa, the Rishi who*Water*has stood the test of time. And to make it easier to remember and sing in groups,*Chandas*were introduced, i.e. meters, to keep track of rhythm and timing while the verse is recited repeatedly.

The next natural transition in mathematics occurred in music*Sama-Veda.*

Rhythm comes from the Sanskrit word*Rta*, meaning order, pattern, cycles. Out of*Rta*comes the word*Rtu*for a season. Rhythm is found in Indian oral tradition, from the Vedas in the form of*Chandas*To*Story*, beats in music and dance.

*Ganitham*is the word for mathematics in India and comes from the root*Gana*, which is also the root for Lord Ganesha. The deity Ganesha or Ganapati represents the*tattwa*, the principle or divine quality of enumerability, numbers, collections, multiplicity, patterns and sequences found in nature.

Gana also leads to Jana, meaning masses, people.

Ganesha, worshiped as the deity of intellect, represents the discrete, countable, and collective aspect of existence in nature. This is intended to represent the differentiating and integrating power of mathematics.

By the way, the geometry has been handed down to us*gyamiti*.*Gyamiti*worked with lines and shapes*Ganitham*was the body of mathematics.

## Stories about trigonometry

What we study today as trigonometry was practiced as*Trikonamiti*in Indian tradition.*triangle*comes from*Tri*for three and*There*means corners. Corners create angles.*triangle*means that pertaining to “three angles” or a triangle.

Indian texts from the 6th and 7th centuries deal with the terms sine, cosine, tangent - the basics of trigonometry.

The words "kona" and "corner" have a similar root in sound and thought.

## Journey of Pi

The concept of Pi in India is tied to the*Sulva-Sutra*, about 8,000 years ago. Pi was deciphered by the Kerala School of Mathematics in 1350 AD. Pi as a mathematical concept traveled from India along with other aspects of trigonometry and calculus needed for navigation in the many millennia since.

## 360 degrees in a circle

The ancient Indians understood that a circle is best represented as a 360 degree shape, as it most closely resembles the natural circle in the cosmos.

A verse from the Rig-Veda (Hymn 164) explains this: It was observed that the sun moved from one day to the next in about 30 days*Scrape*(zodiac sign) to another. With 12*skin rash*each traversed in 30 days, it took the sun 12x30 = 360 days to traverse the whole*Rashi-Chakra*. Thus the whole*Rashi-Chakra*was divided into 360 units or degrees

When the Indian method of calculation traveled to Arabia, the*It was*(seeds) has been translated as*maybe jaba, jabir, jabr*due to the opposite reading direction in the Arabic script. This knowledge and the word*Injury*, came in reverence to be summoned*Al Jaba*,*Al*stand for something sacred. And from there into algebra.

*The material comes from@bharathgyan. This research team, led by a passionate couple - Dr. DK Hari and Dr. Hema Hari – uncovers some of India's untold stories and brings them up to date. You canClick hereto buy one of her books on Indian civilization.*