Sunday, 24 January 2016


Nimrud is the later Arab name for the ancient Assyrian city originally known as Kalhu or Kalah, located 30 kilometres south of the city of Mosul in the Nineveh plains in northern Mesopotamia. It was a major Assyrian city of the Mesopotamian civilization between approximately 1250 BC and 610 BC.

The Assyrian king Shalmaneser I built the city of Kalah somewhere during his rule from 1274 BC to 1245 B though his capital was at a city named Ashur. His descendant, King Ashurnasirpal II, who reigned from 883 to 859 BC, built a new capital at Nimrud. King Ashurnasirpal's son Shalmaneser III (858–823 BC) built a magnificent palace at Nimrud which far exceeded in opulence than any other palce built by his ancestors.

What is of interest is a particular glaze ceramic artifact found at the Palace of Nimrud dated to 900 BC which at present belongs to the British Museum. The artifact is identified by mainstream scholars as that of Ashurbaipal-II with his attendants! Here is the artifact!! Take a close look.

This artifact from Nimrud Palace, Iraq dated to 900 BC
belonging to the British Museum is identified as that of
Assurbanipal II with his attendants.
But this artifact certainly depicts Sri Rama-Sita-Lakshman.
of the Ramayana.
The fact remains the like the Mesopotamian kings just like the Egyptian and Mittani kings sported Sanskrit names - Ashurbanipal is an example. The same is true of the names of rivers and mountains of Mesopotamia and Babylon. Their cities and major centres of civilization depict a deep influence of Indian culture and philosophy. For more on the Sanskrit connect to the names of Mesopotamian and Babylonian rivers click here and here.

A similar artifact was found in a collection belonging to the Etruscan civilization. Long before the days of the rise of the Roman Empire, Italy was home to the Etruscans - a people far more advanced in civilization than the later Romans.  As early as 1200 B.C. they were living in a part of Italy covering an area equivalent to modern day Tuscany. Here is a sketch of one artifact found amongst the Etruscan collection:

A sketch from a collection of Etruscan artifact.
The Etruscans were a pre-Roman civilization
who followed a pagan religion

For more on Etruscan artifacts that tell the story of the Ramayana and its connect to the Etruscan civilization click here.

Sometimes the truth is obvious. It may not be a coincidence that some of the greatest kings of Egypt bore the name Ramses. The father of Nefrititi, the wife of the Egyptian king Pharaoh Akhenaten was Tushratta (Dushratha), the Assurs or Ashurs derived their clan name from the Sanskrit clan name asura. Akhenaten, who brought the concept of one god into a polytheist society is believed to have named himself 'Eknathan' - or 'one god'.....

Related Links:

Monday, 4 January 2016


Buddhist monks, on the patronage of Emperor Ashoka were travelling from India across Asia spreading 'Dharma' or the teachings of the Buddha as early as the 3rd century BC.  The monks scattered in all directions on the Silk Route and spilled into many ancient cities including Khotan in China, Alexandria in Egypt and Antioch in Greece. 

Alexandria in Egypt was inhabited by a
great number of Buddhist monks during
the rule of Emperor Ashoka in around 250 BC.

'Dharma' (धर्म) is a Sanskrit word which means 'duty' and at its earliest appears in the name 'Sanatan-Dharma', the Vedic religion of  the land that is today known as India. In Pali, the language of Buddhism, 'Dharma' distorts to 'dhamma'. The most ancient school of  Buddhism was known as 'Stavira Nikaya'. Sthavir (स्थविर) has the meaning of 'Elder' in Sanskrit. Later the name of Sthavir school distorted to 'Theravada' in Pali but has the same meaning of 'Elder'. 

The Buddhist monks who arrived in Egypt set up their community in Alexandria. In his research paper 'The Possible Indirect Influence of Buddhism on Christian Monasticism: an Assortment of Facts in Support of the Hypothesis", author P. A. Martin says, " There is also evidence that a number of Buddhists were living in Alexandria sometime between 300 BCE and 100 CE, and this was a large site of Therapeutae. The Therapeutae were an ancient order of mystical ascetics who lived in many parts of the ancient world but were found especially near Alexandria, the capital city of Ptolemaic Egypt.

Zacharias P. Thundy, Professor Emiretus of the Northern Michigan University made the observation that the name 'Therapeutae' arises from the Sanskrit/Pali word 'Thervada' which means 'Elder'. He says, " 'Therapeuta' is the Hellenization of the Sanskrit/Pali word 'Thervada'; they were probably the successors of the missionaries whom Emperor Ashoka sent to Egypt, to the kingdom of Ptolemy in the 3rd century as Thervada medical missionaries. Greek, which does not have have corresponding sounds for the labio-dental 'v' and the apico-dental 'd', changed the Indian v & d to p & t ....." Hence, 'thervada' changed to 'therapeuta'.

The evidence for the fact that the Buddhist monks who were sent by Ashoka to various kingdoms within India and abroad were professional healers comes from Ashoka rock edict at Girnar in Gujarat. It states, "Everywhere within the dominion of His Sacred & Gracious Majesty the King & likewise among the frontages such as the Cholas, Pandyas, Sativaputra, the Keralaputra, what is known as Tamrapani, the Greek King Antiochs, and those kings who are neighbors of  that Antiochs - everywhere have been instituted by His Sacred majesty two kinds of medical treatment - medical treatment of man and medical treatment of beast. Medical herbs also, those wholesome for man and those wholesome for beast, have been caused to be planted in all place where they did not exist....."

Ashoka's Rock Edict at Girnar in Gujarat states that medical treatment
was instituted by Buddhist monks or 'thervadas' as far as Antioch in Greece.
The language of the edict engraving  is Pali. The script is Bramhi.

Western sources trace they etymology of 'therapy' and 'therapeutic' to Latin and Greek sources with obscure arguments to support their view that the 'theraputae' were pre-Christian or Jewish ascetics but these arguments have no cultural or historical collateral.

Suggested Readings:
1. Buddha and Christ: Nativity Stories and Indian Traditions by Zacharias P. Thundy
2. The Possible Indirect Influence of Buddhism on Christian Monasticism: an Assortment of Facts in Support of the Hypothesis by P. A. Martin
3. Buddhist Sources of Christianity
4. Buddhist Influence in Christianity
5. Academie Theraputae