Understanding the four Yugas

In the last post, we saw the units of measurement as narrated by Parasarar in Vishnu Puranam. We also saw that 1 mortal year is equivalent to 1 divine day and that 12,000 divine years make one Chathur Yuga-comprising of Krita, Treta, Dwapara and Kali Yugas.

4,000 divine years make up one Krita Yuga. 3000 years make up one Treta Yuga, 2000 one Dwapara Yuga and 1000 divine years one Kali Yuga. Thus 10000 divine years are spread across the 4 Yugas, which results in 2000 years being left out of the original 12000 years. The period that precedes a Yuga is called a Sandhyá, and it is of as many hundred years as there are thousands in the Yuga: and the period that follows a Yuga, termed the Sandhyánsa, is of similar duration. One Chathur Yuga or the collection of 4 Yugas, is made thus.

400 (Sandhya before Krita Yuga) +4000 (Duration of Krita Yuga) +400 (Duration of Sandhyánsa after) = 4800

300 (Sandhya before Treta Yuga) +3000 (Duration of Treta Yuga) +300 (Duration of Sandhyánsa after) = 3600

200 (Sandhya before Dwapara Yuga) +2000 (Duration of Dwapara Yuga) +200 (Duration of Sandhyánsa after) = 2400

100 (Sandhya before Kali Yuga) +1000 (Duration of Kali Yuga) +100 (Duration of Sandhyánsa after) = 1200.

A thousand such Chathur Yugas make one day-time of Brahma. (You would be surprised to know that Brahma is actually a designation that is given to one Soul (or atman)). At the beginning of every creation, the Supreme Being or the Brahman(don’t mistake this with the word Brahmin, as both are different) appoints one soul to this post.  The age of a Brahma is 100 years.

So how does Brahma manage all of this? Well, these 1000 Yugas and His 100 years are divided between 14 Manus. The duration of each Manu is called a Manwantara. A half of his 100 years (or 50 years) makes one Parárddha.

In the next post, we will see our bread crumbs ( where and in which age we are, now) and about Pralayams.

Ciao, for now.

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Units of Time according to Hindu Mythology

I wanted to write about Pralayams, but realized that it cannot be understood fully without first knowing the Units of measurements of time described in Vishnu Puranam.

According to Parasarar in Vishnu Puranam,

Fifteen twinklings of the eye make a Kásht́há; thirty Kásht́hás, one Kalá; and thirty Kalás, one Muhúrta. Thirty Muhúrtas make our one day (a day and night of mortals). 30 such days make a month and 12 such months make a year (360 days a year, only). One mortal year is divided into 2 parts or Ayanas, Uttarayana and Dakshinayana.

Let us now see how a mortal year translates to a divine year.

1 Uttarayana or the northern movement of the Sun in the celestial sphere is a day of the Gods and Dakshinayana or the Southern movement of the Sun, a night for them. This means that 1 year in our life is 1 divine day for the Gods. There are 360 divine days in one divine year.

12,000 divine years constitute the 4 Yugas – Krita, Treta, Dwapara and Kali and 4 Yugas make one Chathur Yuga. There are 1000 Chathur Yugas in a day-time of Brahma.

Let me stop with that for now- too many numbers to crunch and too much information to digest and remember from one post. In the next post, we will see about what constitutes a day for Brahma, how the 12000 divine years are spread across the 4 Yugas, and how Brahma administers the 4 Yugas.

We are not alone!

When NASA says  “We are not alone” what do we think? Would your interest be spiked if I tell that the same thing has been said thousands of years ago by a sage called parasarar?

Read on…

We all live on Earth which is called “Bhúr-loka” (or Bhu-Loka). There are 6 more lokas above us which form a higher level of existence. They are

  1. Bhur-Loka – Inhabited by us-Humans
  2. Bhuvar-Loka – Sphere of Sky right above us
  3. Swar-Loka – Planetary sphere where Devas and Indira live
  4. Mahar-Loka – inhabited by saintly souls – This is the intermediary Loka in between the lower 3 lokas and the upper 3 lokas.
  5. Jana-Loka – Sanandana and other pure minded sons of Brahma reside here
  6. Tapo-Loka – inhabited by the deities called Vaibhrájas
  7. Satya-Loka – This is inhabited by souls which never again know death and Brahma

The Vishnu Puranam dwells in detail about the distances between each loka and what actually exists in between them. That’s for another post though.

Now below us, we have

  1. Atala
  2. Vitala
  3. Sutala
  4. Talatala
  5. Mahatala
  6. Rasatala
  7. Patala

These are the regions that are inhabited by Yakshas, Rakshasas, Pisasas, Pretas and Bhutas. Then we have Naraka(m) or hell.

That is not all. If you consider this whole system as an egg (or Andam) then there are the following  layers of coatings, starting with Water and encompassed by layers of Agni(fire), Air(Vayu), Mind and Intellect. AND there ends the boundaries of one egg.

There are thousands and thousands of such eggs in the cosmos, with each egg having its own Brahma for creation and other celestial beings for performing their own duties.

The next time we hear someone say “We are not alone”, let us not laugh at that, but introspect a little to see how small a speck we are in the whole scheme of things.