Are you the publisher? Claim or contact us about this channel

Embed this content in your HTML


Report adult content:

click to rate:

Account: (login)

More Channels


Channel Catalog

Channel Description:

A homage to Hindu civilization.

older | 1 | .... | 306 | 307 | (Page 308) | 309 | 310 | .... | 374 | newer

    0 0

    • Is it Ignorance or yet another Mischievous attempt at proving the never existent Aryan Invasion of India?

       12:56 PM, Jun 20, 2017
    •  Nilesh Nilkanth Oak

    Mr. Tony Joseph has recently written an extremely erroneous Op-Ed in the famous communist Mouthpiece “The HINDU” ( about the Aryan Invasion Myth. Many rebuttals are being churned out including this but let me begin by thanking him for clearly stating his claim:
    “did Indo-European language speakers, who called themselves Aryans, stream into India sometime around 2,000 BC – 1,500 BC when the Indus Valley civilization came to an end, bringing with them Sanskrit and a distinctive set of cultural practices? Genetic research based on an avalanche of new DNA evidence is making scientists around the world converge on an unambiguous answer: yes, they did.”
    Let’s summarize his claims:
    1. Aryan came to India around 2000 BCE -1500 BCE
    2. The language of Aryans was Indo-European
    3. Aryans came to India when Indus valley civilization came to an end
    4. Aryans brought Sanskrit to India
    5. Aryans brought distinctive set of culture practices to India
    6. Genetic research based on new DNA evidence unambiguously support these claims
    As it happens, Genes don’t speak or encode cultural practices, so we may wonder how Mr. Tony Joseph reached these conclusions.
    Let’s begin with what Mr. Tony Joseph cannot deny and has fortunately not denied.
    Genetics research conducted over the last 30 years has shown that the first successful migration/exodus out of Africa took place between 120,000 and 80,000 years ago, via the southern route out of Africa and reached areas of modern Malesia about 74,000 years ago and to Australia about 70,000 years ago.  Europe and West Asia experienced their first migration around 50,000 years ago.  Central Asia and West Eurasia experienced their first migrations around the same time i.e. 40,000 -50,000 years ago.  The role of Greater India (modern Iran, Afghanistan, Pakistan, Bangladesh, Myanmar, Sri Lanka) is central, as the source of all non-African dispersals. 
    It is very critical to define the boundaries of India, as far as ancient migrations are concerned.  What we will call ‘Greater India’ for the sake of convenience is defined as a geographical landscape that begins in the west with modern Iran and stretches in the east to modern day Bangladesh/Myanmar and in the south to Sri Lanka (Figure 1)
    Figure 1
    To illustrate how careless interpretation can lead to disastrous wrong conclusions, let me quote a passage from a paper by Prof. Spencer Wells of Stanford University1:
    “Although the bias cannot be ruled out, most of the markers examined here are located relatively deep within the NR Y evolutionary tree (8), and thus there is no a priori reason to expect a bias toward Central Asia. In addition, Y chromosome microsatellites indicate that Central Asia (Pakistani) populations are the most diverse in Eurasia (19).  The consistency of the biallelic and microsatellite results suggests that Central Asian populations are among the oldest on the continent.  This pattern of high diversity is consistent with an early settlement of Central Asia by anatomically modern humans, perhaps 40,000-50,000 years ago (see below), followed by subsequent migrations into Europe, America and India, dispersing M45-, M173-, and M17- derived lineages.” [emphasis mine]
    Enough said!
    Mr. Tony Joseph seems to agree that based on matrilineal DNA (mtDNA) data, there was little external infusion into the Indian gene pool over the last 12,500 years or so. We may add that this conclusion is reached by genetic researchers with the help of mtDNA data coupled with climatology data.  In fact, when it comes to dating of plausible spread and migration of people, genetic researchers do take their clues from climatology and archaeology in estimating the timeline of such migrations. 
    Predominant role of Greater India in non-African dispersal of human beings, based on mtDNA is summarized by Metspalu et al2 in Figure 2:
    Figure 2
    Notice the internal (back and forth) interaction and migration within Greater India (Figure 2), In fact, the actual boundaries of Greater India can be justifiably defined further outward, but these will do for now. 
    This brings us to our first disagreement with Mr. Tony Joseph.
    Joseph claims:
    “New Y-DNA data has turned that conclusion upside down, with strong evidence of external infusion of genes into the Indian male lineage during the period in question”
    He cites research done on Y-chromosome (male chromosome) haplogroup (HG) known as ‘R1a’ by stating that about 17.5% of Indian male lineage has been found to belong to haplogroup R1a and that today this group has spread across Central Asia, Europe and Great India (Iran through Bangladesh).  So far so good.  On the other hand, Mr. Tony Joseph is wrong when he states that- “Pontic-Caspian Steppe region is the region from where R1a spread both west and east.” 
    We will let genetic data do the talking.
    Mr. Tony Joseph states that “The paper that pulled all of the recent discoveries together into a tight and coherent history of migrations into India was published just three months ago in a peer-reviewed journal called ‘BMC Evolutionary Biology’!!
    The paper Joseph is referring to is by Prof. Martin B Richards [Silva et al (2017)]3 which consumes the first 12 of its total 18 pages in confirming Greater India as the source of mtDNA for all non-African dispersals. Finally, when the paper does get into Y-chromosome data, all it does is repeat the well-established expansion of HG R1a both west and east across Eurasia and equally well established ancient nature of this HG R1a within Greater India and Central Asia.
    The key argument made in the paper that is the cause of confusion of  Joseph comes next:   The paper states that available high-quality Y chromosome data shows presence of R1a throughout Eurasia and in Greater India.  It also states presence of young subclades in Greater India and expansion of subclades of R1a-Z93 or R1a-Z94 in these regions (Figure 3). 
    This is all true however, this does not lead to the desired conclusion of either the authors of the paper or of Mr. Tony Joseph, viz.:
    Figure 3
    The authors claim:
    “Altogether, therefore, the recently refined Y-chromosome tree strongly suggests that R1a is indeed a highly plausible marker for the long-contested Bronze Age spread of Indo-Aryan speakers into South Asia.”
    Thankfully, the authors of the paper (but not Mr. Tony Joseph) are aware of the conjectural nature of their claim and immediately add:
    “although dated aDNA evidence will be needed for a precise estimate of its arrival in various parts of the Subcontinent.  aDNA will also be needed to test the hypothesis that there were several streams of Indo-Aryan immigration (each with a different pantheon), for example with the earliest arriving ~3.4 ka and those following the Rigveda several centuries later [12].”
    The reference [12] is the inspiration for their conjecture and when one digs deeper, one realizes that the reference [12] in their paper is to a book by A Parpola, a linguist and known supporter of the Aryan-Dravidian divide.  And with this we are back to the familiar mythical Aryans streaming into India, this time around 1400 BCE (~3.4 ka) and then writing Rigveda!
    What is the problem with this research and such bizarre claims? 
    First and foremost, the same data can be used to make a claim for outward migration from India into Central Asia. Let us remind our readers that hydrology and genealogical evidence of Rigveda combined with astronomical evidence of Ramayana and Mahabharata proves, beyond a reasonable doubt, the chronology of older sections of Rigveda to late Pleistocene (before 10,000 BCE) and youngest sections of Rigveda (e.g. Mandala 10) to mid-Holocene (5000 BCE), long time before ~3.4 ka.
    But let us return to the faulty inference based on a combination of genetic data and the dogma of AIT (Aryan Invasion Theory). What causes researchers to make such claims that are not substantiated by supporting genetic evidence??
    To understand this, we first must understand how this genetic sequencing is tracked.
    Primer on Phylogeography
    The great advance that came with genetic research over last 30 years is allowing us to map mtDNA and Y-chromosome trees with increasing resolution thus enabling us to trace individual molecular branches and their twigs.  The fancy name for this tracking is Phylogeography.  In lay terms, it is essentially following twigs back to their branches and connecting points on a map.
    The rules are simple, although their application is somewhat complex; maybe why researchers from this very field can reach erroneous conclusions.  Of course, if they allow themselves to be swayed by Mythical Aryans, Indo-European languages and Rigveda, then all hell breaks loose.
    It is good to remember that Genes do not distinguish racial, and now obsolete, concept of race, nor can it tell us about the languages spoken by specific molecular branches or the poetic abilities of certain mutated genes in composing the oldest text of humanity – The Rigveda!

    To detect a migration from one region to another, we need to find the source branch type in both regions and a new unique twig in the target region that is not present in the homeland.  If one understands this, then R1a branches and its twigs point to expansion from Greater India into Eurasia -both east and west. To comprehend this fact, we would have to refer to another paper quoted by Mr. Tony Joseph.  Underhill et al (2015)4 estimated divergence time of R1a-M420 Y-chromosome haplogroup to ~25000 years ago and the location of its diversification into Europe, Central Asia and Greater India, near present-day Iran (northwest tip of Greater India).
    And while on the subject, it is worth mentioning that for a homeland with multiple migrations in different directions, we need to identify common branches in the homeland that have different unique twigs in the other region.  Again, Greater India passes this test with flying colors as the source of all non-African dispersals.
    Unfortunately, such inferences are completely lost on Joseph. Additional and equally erroneous claims follow from this perpetual lack of comprehension and misunderstanding. 
    Let’s look at some of them in brief. 
    Mr. Tony Joseph writes:
    “So, if you want to know the approximate period when Indo-European language speakers came and rapidly spread across India, you need to discover the date when Z 93 splintered into its own various subgroups or lineages.”
    And what do Prof. Underhill and team4 have to say about this Z-93 splintering? They estimate splintering of this M417 (proxy for splintering of Z280 and Z 93) to have occurred about 6000 years ago (4000 BCE).
    These authors4 also admit that:
    “We caution against ascribing findings from a contemporary phylogenetic cluster of a single genetic locus to a particular pre-historic demographic event, population migration, or cultural transformation.”
    “However, our data does not enable us to directly ascribe the patterns of R1a geographic spread to specific prehistoric cultures or more recent demographic events”
    On the other hand,  Joseph insists on ignoring such sane advice in pursuit of his AIT dream.  But then Mr. Tony Joseph is not alone.  He is in a good company of many genetic researchers who have slides along such slippery slopes of illogical inferences and extrapolation.
    Next Mr. Tony Joseph embarks on young age of some of the sub-branches of this R1a -Z93 haplogroup, based on the work of Poznik et al (2016)5 that refers to expansion occurring within Z93 haplogroup.  It is hard to comprehend excitement of Joseph since such expansions as well as corresponding mutations are extremely common during the peopling of the world.  Joseph tries to connect this with end of Sindhu-Sarasvati civilization. 
    Fortunately, commonsense prevailed in this case and he admits: “There is no evidence so far, archaeologically or otherwise, to suggest that one caused the other; it is quite possible that the two events happened to coincide.”
    However, such satisfaction is short lived.  Mr. Tony Joseph quotes a paper by Reich et al (2009)6 where authors employ the AIT aspect of Indo-Aryan pushing Dravidians to the south and use this ‘theoretical’ construct of ‘Ancestral North Indians” (ANI) and “Ancestral South Indians” (ASI).  Mr. Tony Joseph loves the natural closeness of ANI with Middle eastern, Central Asian and European population and thinks of employing it in support of AIT.  However, he is also aware of the problem.  The problem is that this study along with numerous other genetic studies have proved the ancient (15000-17000 years ago) of the admixing between ANI and ASI along caste and tribal barriers negating the very basis of AIT occurring only 3000-4000 years ago.
    Mr. Tony Joseph decides to leave the subject at that and moves on to his next researcher. Mr. Tony Joseph quotes Prof. David Reich, professor of Harvard Medical School from his interview with ‘Edge’.  We will return to this interview of Prof. Reich, shortly.
    Prof. Reich refers to ‘profound population mixture event’ and Mr. Tony Joseph tells us that this was based on a paper published by Priya Moorjani (2013)7, coauthored with Prof. Reich.  Mr. Tony Joseph quotes substantially from this paper:
    “The dates we report have significant implications for Indian history in the sense that they document a period of demographic and cultural change in which mixture between highly differentiated populations became pervasive before it eventually became uncommon. The period of around 1,900–4,200 years before present was a time of profound change in India, characterized by the de-urbanization of the Indus civilization, increasing population density in the central and downstream portions of the Gangetic system, shifts in burial practices, and the likely first appearance of Indo-European languages and Vedic religion in the subcontinent.” [emphasis mine]
    “The shift from widespread mixture to strict endogamy that we document is mirrored in ancient Indian texts.”
    What Mr. Tony Joseph avoids telling us is that this paper also speculated three different hypotheses in explaining the admixture between ANI and ASI by proposing that this could be due to:
    (1) migrations occurring prior to agriculture (mtDNA evidence supports this)
    (2) Western Asian people migrating to India along with agriculture around 8000- 9000 BP (no evidence) or
    (3) migrations from western or Central Asia from 3000 to 4000 BP, a time during which it is likely that Indo-European languages began to be spoken in the subcontinent (no evidence).
    In fact, enormous evidence exist that demolishes all 3 hypotheses for inward migrations into India.  But we do not have to state it.  Rather we should focus on internal contradiction of author's own theories with their own proposals and claims.
    In their words:
    “A difficulty with this theory (#3), however, is that by this time India was a densely populated region with widespread agriculture, so the number of migrants of West Eurasian ancestry must have been extraordinarily large to explain the fact that today about half the ancestry in India derives from the ANI.”
    But there are even bigger problems:  Again, in the words of authors of this paper:
    “It is also important to recognize that a date of mixture is very different from the date of migration; mixture always postdates migration.  Nevertheless, a genetic date for the mixture would place a minimum on the date of migration and identity periods of important demographic change in India”
    Let’s now revisit the much-touted interview of Prof. David Reich with “Edge”.
    I recall a forum member expressing his suspicion of Prof. David Reich as a ‘closet AIT believer’, when his 2009 paper “Reconstructing Indian Population History” was published and when motivation behind ANI and ASI classifications were being discussed on various Internet forums.  Closet AIT believer or not, Prof David Reich seems to be drinking from the AIT ocean in ample quantity when it comes to interpreting genetic evidence for Greater India. 
    This is what Prof. Reich said during that interview:
    “What’s happened very rapidly, dramatically, and powerfully, in the last few years has been the explosion of genome-wide studies of human history based on modern and ancient DNA, and that’s been enabled by the technology of genomics and the technology of ancient DNA. Basically, it’s a gold rush right now; it’s a new technology and that technology is being applied to everything we can apply it to, and there are many low-hanging fruits, many gold nuggets strewn because are being picked up very rapidly. That is precisely what is happening now.      
    What’s very clear and what the archeologists who are really scientists, embracing scientific technology, are realizing is that this is a new way to investigate the past. This is going to be embraced by archeology, by the humanities, by linguistics, as a new way of inquiring into the past. In five or ten years, this will be integrated properly into departments of linguistics, especially into departments of archeology, as a central way of inquiring into the past.”
    Prof. David Reich, Department of Genetics, Harvard Medical School
    What Prof. Reich refers to as a future scenario is a reality right now.  AIT began with linguistics, flourished with the help of colonial practicalities and was propped up by misleading usage of selective archaeological data. The AIT theme is being exploited by post modernists and now further buttressed by selective and misinterpreted usage of genetics data.
    Of course, Genetics is a wonderful scientific discipline, still in its infancy, and dramatic progress in genome-wide studies are going to be crucial in understanding human history.  This is very exciting. What we should worry though is when evidence from various disciplines of science is carelessly interpreted in the age-old construct of social studies.
    Prof. Reich says, in the same interview,
    “In India, you can see, for example, that there is this profound population mixture event that happens between 2000 to 4000 years ago. It corresponds to the time of the composition of the Rigveda, the oldest Hindu religious text, one of the oldest pieces of literature in the world, which describes a mixed society where there is people with not entirely Indo-European names who are being incorporated as poets and kings.
    You have that happening, and then you have the ossification of that system into a kind of caste system, which you can see both in the genetics also reflected in the text. But you can establish this with the genetics, especially with ancient DNA, but even in the case of India with present DNA because we don’t yet have ancient DNA from India. Anthropologists will eventually need to use this information, and they will because they’ve embraced also radiocarbon data.”
    It will be sufficient to note down key words ‘linguistics’, ‘Rigveda in 1000 BCE’, ‘Indo-European poets’ and ‘caste system’.  The error of Prof. Reich for the timing of Rigveda is certainly worrisome. But his following comment, during the same interview, takes the cake!
    “What we had proposed was a ghost population, a population that we were predicting statistically based on the patterns that’s left on present-day people but that doesn’t exist anymore in the place where it once was.”      
    This should remind many of the proposal of a ghost language – PIE (Proto-Indo-European)!  This may also remind many of the proposals of Prof. Witzel, another Harvard faculty, for Proto-Munda and Proto-Indo-Aryan in justifying his fraudulent chronology for Sanskrit, AIT and Rigveda.
    Let’s return to the three claims made by Mr. Tony Joseph:
    1. The first argument was that there were no major gene flows from outside to India in the last 12,500 years or so because mtDNA data showed no signs of it. This argument was found faulty when it was shown that Y-DNA did indeed show major gene flows from outside into India within the last 4000 to 4,500 years or so, especially R1a which now forms 17.5% of the Indian male lineage. The reason why mtDNA data behaved differently was that Bronze Age migrations were severely sex-biased.
    Our response…
    There are no major gene flows from outside India especially prior to 2000 years ago.  Haplogroup R1a is an indigenous male haplogroup and its substantial presence and its antiquity in India is natural.
             2.  The second argument put forward was that R1a lineages exhibited much greater diversity in India than elsewhere and, therefore, it must have originated in India and spread                           outward. This has been proved false because a mammoth, global study of R1a haplogroup published last year showed that R1a lineages in India mostly belong to just three                         subclades of the R1a-Z93 and they are only about 4,000 to 4,500 years old.
    Our response…
    R1a lineage indeed shows much diversity in Greater India than elsewhere and that is how its origin was estimated to be in the modern-day Iran.  Ancient Indian cultural landscape was spread from modern Iran through modern Bangladesh and this fact can-not and should not be ignored.  The fact subclades of R1a-Z93 in India are young is in no way contradicts ancient and indigenous nature of R1a male haplogroup.
    3. The third argument was that there were two ancient groups in India, ANI and ASI, both of which settled here tens of thousands of years earlier, much before the supposed migration of Indo-European languages speakers to India. This argument was false to begin with because ANI — as the original paper that put forward this theoretical construct itself had warned — is a mixture of multiple migrations, including probably the migration of Indo-European language speakers.
    Our response…
    We agree with Mr. Tony Joseph that the classification of Indian gene pool along the lines of ANI vs ASI is on faulty grounds. This has nothing to do with multiple migrations.  There were no significant migrations between 50,000 and 2000 years ago.
    Nearly all Indians are non-immigrants and negligible input into Greater India (modern Iran through modern Bangladesh), until ~2000 years ago.  The migrations into India in the last ~2000 years are well known.  Indian gene pool is 50,000+ years old with no substantial input from outside until 2000 years ago.  While Mr. Tony Joseph is forced to deal with probable scenarios, evidence from various disciplines of science – archaeology, astronomy, hydrology, climatology, oceanography, linguistics, genetics, has established and continue to re-establish antiquity of Indic civilization, Rigveda (7000 years ago and before), Indic history and Sanskrit, long before the timeline claimed by dogma of AIT (4000 -3500 years ago).
    1.Wells, Spencer et al (2001) “The Eurasian Heartland: A continental perspective on Y-Chromosome Diversity” PNAS August 2001 Volume 98 Number 18
    2.Metspalu et al (2004) “Most of the extant mtDNA boundaries in South and Southwest Asia were likely shaped during the initial settlement of Eurasia by anatomically modern humans” BMC Genetics 5:26
    3.Silva et al (2017) “A genetic chronology for the Indian Subcontinent points to heavily sex-biased dispersals” BMC Evolutionary Biology 17:88
    4.Underhill et al (2015) “The phylogenetic ad geographic structure of Y-chromosome haplogroup R1a” European Journal of Human Genetics 23, 124-131
    5.Poznik et al (2016) “Punctuated bursts in human male demography inferred from 1.244 worldwide Y-chromosome sequences” Nature Genetics
    6.Reich et al (2009) “Reconstructing Indian Population History” Nature Vol 461
    7.Moorjani et al (2013) “Genetic evidence for Recent Population Mixture in India” The American Journal of Human Genetics, (
    8.Underhill et al (2010) “Separating the post-Glacial coancestry of European and Asian Y chromosomes within haplogroup R1a” European Journal of Human Genetics (2010) 18, 479–484
    9.Oppenheimer, Stephen (2003) Out of Eden: The Peopling of the world. Constable & Robinson Ltd. UK.
    10.Oak, Nilesh N (2011) When did the Mahabharata War Happen? The Mystery of Arundhati, Daphne
    11.Oak, Nilesh N (2014) The Historic Rama, Bhima LLC
    12.Reich, David, A conversation with David Reich, “The Genomic Ancient DNA Revolution’ interview with ‘Edge’ (


    • But, but, but... Mr. Oak, don't you KNOW that in BCE 4004 the Lawd Gawd said: LET THERE B LITE!! GO 4th & Learn Multiplication! Divide & Conquer! These distinguished Professors and Journalists are merely fitting their data to these Holy Conclusions. Back in MacAulay/Mueller era, they have already settled all this debate conclusively without all this DNA,ANA,BNA, CNA etc. It was also approved by Her Imperial Majesty Queen Victoria, of the True Aryan Reich. How can you questions such Divine Authority, hain? 40,000 years BCE? How can there be ANYTHING Before 4004BCE? All this stuff about 40,000 years is sheer blasphemy, introduced by that rascal Darwin after whom the Darwin Award is named. I hereby nominate Saint Tony Joseph for the 2017 Darwin Award.
        • Avatar
          Excellent rejoinder Shri Oak.Though I know the Mount Road Mahavishnu and their leftist naxal leader may not accept, have you tried to send this to them? Tony Joseph's false claim has been widely publicized by the anti Indian forces all over the world cited from the Hindu. At least if they refuse you can claim utter uncivilized behavior from the (anti) Hindu !

        0 0

        Epigraphia Indus Script – Hypertexts & Meanings 

        Harappa. Potsherd with Indus Script inscription dated to ca. 3300 BCE. kolom'three' rebus: kolimi'smithy, forge' PLUS tagaraka'tabernae montana' rebus: tagara'tin'. This discovery makes the writing system the oldest in the world, pre-dating cuneiform writing and Egyptian hieroglyphs.

        The publication of the major source of deciphered ancient inscriptions dating from ca. 3300 BCE (date of the earliest Indus Script artificat of a potsherd with an inscription discovered at Harappa by Harvard HARP team), tour de force for Bhāratīya civilization and culture studies is the result of dedicated research performed with śraddhā 'faith and confidence' in jñāna, 'wisdom' of our ancestors and pitr̥-s. 

        The research work by the author for 40 years since 1978 is marked by the publication of an Indian Lexicon (a multi-lingual comparative dictionary for over 25 ancient languagees of India organized in over 8000 semantic clusters), publication of 16 books on River Sarasvati, Soma in the R̥gveda and over 800 monographs on 

        New light on the hypothesis of an ancient Maritime Tin Route of the Bronze Age linking Hanoi (Vietnam) to Haifa (Israel) is supported by discoveries of Indus Script hieroglyphs/hypertexts on cire perdue bronze art work on tympanums of Dong Son/Karen Tin-Bronze drums. This Tin Route heralded by the Dong Son/Karen drums, pre-dates the Silk Road by over 2 millennia. 

        The cultural framework of over 8000 inscriptions of Indus Script discovered along the Tin Route affirms Bhāratīya sprachbund (language union) and indigenous roots of R̥gvedic people who worked on the banks of River Sarasvati. 
          Three tin ingots discovered in a Haifa shipwreck with Indus Script epigraphs.
        Three pure tin ingots were found in a shipwreck in Haifa. The tin ingots described in Indus Script inscriptions in Meluhha Bhāratīya sprachbund that they were tin ore ingots: ranku,  'antelope, liquid measure' rebus: ranku, 'tin'; dāṭu, dāṇṭu 'cross' rebus: dhatu, 'mineral'; mũh 'a face' mũh,muhã'ingot' or muhã 'quantity of metal produced at one time in a native smelting furnace.'.

        The re-discovery of the Vedic river Sarasvati venerated in 72 r̥ca-s of R̥gveda, is now matched by the re-discovery of 1. the documented life activities of the artisans and seafaring merchants of the civilization creting wealth of nations, and 2. their spoken language enshrined in Epigraphia Indus Script – Hypertexts & Meanings

        The research findings and conclusions of the 3-volume work are tectonic shifts in Bhāratīya civilization studies, archaeometallurgy of Eurasia, peopling of Eurasia from ca. 7th millennium BCE and the role played by the Himalayan rivers like Irrawaddy, Salween and Mekong in geomorphology creating the largest tin belt of the globe grinding down granite rocks into cassiterite (tin ore) placer deposits. The creation of the tin belt is a cosmic dance of gigantic proportions described as plate tectonics still active, still uplifting the Himlayan ranges (which stretch from Hanoi to Teheran) by 1 cm. per year as the Indian palte thrusts northwards in a majestic walk of 6 cm. per year. The continuing rise and dynamism of the  Himalayan ranges is a glaciological marvel exemplified by major perennial fresh-water river systems such as Yangtse, Huanghe, Mekong, Irrawaddy, Salween, Brahmaputra, Sindhu, Sarasvati, Ganga. 

        This work is a harbinger of a civilizational narrative of the Economic History of Eurasia, organization of guilds creating wealth of a nation, a commonwealth, Maritime activities of seafaring merchants and artisans of Eurasia firmly anchored on the decipherment of the hypertexts of Indus Script Corpora. 

        Hypertexts and meanings of tne entire corpora are presented in the 3 volumes of Epigraphia Indus Script – Hypertexts & Meanings. Epigraphical evidence is marshalled which debunks the false Aryan Invasion/Migration theories and the false 19th century paradigms of formation & evolution of  Bhāratīya languages. 

        The conclusions of Epigraphia Indus Script – Hypertexts & Meanings affirm the language kaleidoscope of Bhāratīya sprachbund (union of languages) exemplified by the spread of Austro-Asiatic languages into the Far East from Assur-Munda-Santali speakers in the lineage of the Meluhha sprachbund. Meluhha (cognate mleccha) is a spoken, dialectical form, a lingua franca or parole of copper workers, evidenced in the lexical repertoire marshalled by ancient linguistic works like Hemacandra's Deśīnāmamālā. 

        The writing system invented by these copper/metal (mleccha-mukha, mleccha, milakkhu means 'copper') workers of the Bronze Age is referred to as म्लेच्छित  विकल्प mlecchita vikalpa 'cryptography' (lit. alternative representation by mleccha) --  for writing Mleccha expressions as hypertexts of Indus Script

        This mlecchita vikalpa is Meluhha cipher of the Indus Script Corpora. 

        Vātsyāyana's vidyāsamuddeśa (objectives of learning) śloka lists 64 arts. This list includes three arts related to language studies: deśabhāshā jñāna; akara muika kathana; mlecchita vikalpa [trans. learning dialects of the linguistic area (deśa); messaging through use of fingers and wrists; cryptography (writing system)]. 

        Hemacandra notes that Soma venerated in the R̥gveda is metal containing gold. Abhidhāna Cintāmaṇi of Hemachandra states that mleccha and mleccha-mukha are two of the twelve names for copper: tāmram (IV.105-6: tāmram mlecchamukham śulvam raktam dvaṣṭamudumbaram; mlecchaśāvarabhedākhyam markatāsyam kanīyasam; brahmavarddhanam variṣṭham sīsantu sīsapatrakam). Theragāthā in Pali refers to a banner which was dyed the colour of copper: milakkhurajanam (The Thera and Theragāthā PTS, verse 965: milakkhurajanam rattam garahantā sakam dhajam; tithiyānam dhajam keci dhāressanty avadātakam; K.R.Norman, tr., Theragāthā : Finding fault with their own banner which is dyed the colour of copper, some will wear the white banner of sectarians).[cf. Asko and Simo Parpola, On the relationship of the Sumerian Toponym Meluhha and Sanskrit Mleccha, Studia Orientalia, vol. 46, 1975, pp. 205-38).

         Indus Script Inscriptions Discovery Sites of Sarasvati-Sindhu civilization 


        Logical connection, anvaya, of hieroglyphs/ hypertexts of Indus Script inscriptions to artha'wealth, business, meaning' constitutes decipherment of the script consistent with vākyapadīya (science of grammar). Deciphered epigraphs of the entire Indus Script Corpora are presented in 3 volumes.

        Definitions of terms

        Hieroglyph is a logograph, i.e. a pictorial motif to signify the associated sound of the word. Hypertext is a hieroglyph linked to a similar sounding word. Indus Script is designed with hieroglyphs composed as hypertexts. For example, a pictorial motif (hieroglyph) of a water-carrier signifies the word kuṭi in Meluhha – which is a spoken form of Proto-Indic language of Bhāratīya sprachbund.  

        Wealth-creating metallurgical repertoire of Harappa, Mohenjo-daro, Chanhu-daro foundry metalcasts; Harappa Inscriptions (2590) deciphered

        Field symbols:  sãgaḍ 'lathe, portable furnace' rebus: sangara 'trade', samgraha, samgaha 'arranger, manager'; sãgaḍ 'lathe, portable furnace' rebus: sangara 'trade', samgraha, samgaha 'arranger, manager'; jākaṛ 'invoiced on approval basis'.; कोंद kōnda 'young bull' rebus: कोंद kōnda ‘engraver, script’ kundana ‘fine goldText : kanac 'corner' rebus: kancu 'bell-metal' PLUS sal 'splinter' rebus: sal 'workshop'. Thus bronze/bell-metal workshop.;
        aya 'ironayas 'alloy metal' (R̥gveda) PLUS dhāḷ 'slanted stroke' rebus: dhāḷako 'ingot'; karã̄ n. pl. wristlets, bangles Rebus: khār खार्'blacksmith'; dula 'two' rebus: dul 'metal casting'. Meaning, artha: Trade (and metalwork wealth production) ...PLUS (wealth/business categories cited on inscription). 

        Inscriptions of the Indus Script Corpora are a basic resource to narrate the itihāsa of an ancient Bronze Age civilization.

        Thousands of inscriptions from Harappa, Mohenjo-daro and all other sites along the Ancient Maritime Tin Route from Hanoi to Haifa (together with meanings) have been presented.

        The total number of sites of Sarasvati-Sindhu civilization are over 2,600. Out of thse, 80% of sites, i.e. over 2000 are on the banks of Vedic River Sarasvati. Almost from every one of the sites smithy/forge metalwork has been evidenced. Hundreds of inscriptions from over 40 of these sites attest to 1) smithies and forges of the Tin-Bronze revolution.and 2) guilds at work contributing to the commonwealth treasury.

        See inscribed gold objects m2128 and m2129. Gold pendants with Indus script inscription. The pendant is needle-like with cylindrical body. It is made from a hollow cylinder with soldered ends and perforated joint. Museum No. MM 1374.50.271; Marshall 1931: 521, pl. CLI, B3 (After Fig. 4.17 a, b in: JM Kenoyer, 1998, p. 196).

         kanac 'corner' Rebus: kancu 'bronze'; sal 'splinter' Rebus: sal 'workshop'; dhatu 'cross road' Rebus: dhatu 'mineral'; gaNDa 'four' Rebus: khanda 'implements'; kolmo 'three' Rebus: kolami 'smithy, forge'; aya 'fish' Rebus: aya 'iron'(Gujarati) ayas 'metal' (Rigveda)
        kanac 'corner' rebus: kancu 'bell-metal'. PLUS sal ‘splinter’ rebus: sal ‘workshop

        dāṭu 'cross' rebus: dhatu = mineral (Santali) Hindi. dhāṭnā 'to send out, pour out, cast (metal)' (CDIAL 6771) 

        ayo 'fish' rebus: aya 'ironayas 'alloy metal' (R̥gveda) PLUS gaṇḍa 'four' rebus: khaṇḍa 'implements'  PLUS kolom 'three' rebus: kolimi 'smithy, forge

        The pictorials are as important as signs and must be 'deciphered' to understand the message conveyed by the inscription on an object.

        Another clue which may be surmised: A sign by itself may constitute a message and hence may be a lexeme.

        Considering that as many as 273 (111 + 42 + 120) inscriptions are communicated using two signs or less (with or without a pictorial motif or 'field symbol'), it may not be appropriate to assign syllabic or alphabetic values to each sign or each pictorial. Each pictorial or each sign may contain a 'word' or 'lexeme'.

        An important test for a 'successful' decipherment is that a sign or pictorial should be explained consistently on a variety of  inscribed objects. The inscriptions are classified by types of object carrying the inscription.

        The frequencies in parenthesis are based on Mahadevan conordance (which excludes objects that do not contain a 'sign'); the actual numbers will be higher based on the more comprehensive Parpola photo corpus which includes inscriptions containing only pictorials.


        Tablets (in bas-relief or inscribed)[including Seal Impressions]

        Miniature tablets (of stone, terracotta or faience) (Over 270)

        Copper tablets (Over 200)

        Bronze implements/weapons (11)

        Seal Impressions*

        Pottery graffitii (Over 100)

        Ivory or bone rods (29)

        Inscribed on Stone, Bracelets, Ivory plaque, Ivory dice, Carnelian tablet, Terracotta ball, Brick (15)

        Display Board (Dholavira or Kotda with 10 signs, possibly atop a gateway) (1)

        Almost all the miniature tablets are from Harappa; almost all copper tablets are from Mohenjo-daro. An inference is that the miniature tablets served the same function as the copper tablets which evidence repetitive messages or sign sequences.

        This classification provides a clue as to the function served by many inscriptions: inscriptions on bronze implements/weapons (11) and copper tablets (135) could perhaps have been done only by a metal-smith-fire-worker. There is a reasonable inference here: many messages may relate to the 'economic activity' of metal-smiths. This inference is consistent with the emergence of the Bronze Age in neighbouring civilizations which have also attested to contacts with the Sarasvati-Sindhu civilization sites (witness, for e.g. the finds of cylinder seals in Indian sites and the finds of 'Indus' seals and artefacts in Mesopotamian sites.)

        Another inference may be drawn from the fact that copper was a valuable commodity in those times. The use of a copper tablet to convey a message would strengthen an inference that great importance was attached to the message conveyed through the inscription on such a copper plate. It should be noted here that two silver seals have also been discovered.

        The 'economic activity' of metal smith includes (sic) the production of metal objects such as vessels, tools and weapons. The inscriptions may (!) therefore constitute a record of 'objects' possessed by the owner of the inscribed object whether the 'owner' is a metal-smith or a guild of artisans and seafaring merchants or a customer serviced by the metal-smith.

        Punch-marked coins and coin-hoards of mints (coins which are counted in tens of thousands) from Takshasila to Anuradhapura from ca. 6thcent. BCE continue to signify selected Indus Script hypertexts.

        Script Cipher

        The cipher of Indus Script is explained by the following example of a hypertext expression with two hieroglyph components in Meluhha language.

        The hieroglyph (pictorial motif) signifies the sound of a word kuṭi, ’water-carrier’. dula 'duplicated' rebus: dul 'metal casting' PLUS

        mēḍha मेढ'polar star' (Marathi) rebus: meḍ 'iron' (Mu.Ho).

        Pictorial motif ‘rim-of-jar’ signifies the sound of a Meluhha word: kanka.

        Orthography signifying pictorial motif of hypertext kuṭi,‘water-carrier’ can be ligatured to pictorial motif (hieroglyph) which signifies a Meluhha wordkanka. ‘rim-of-jar

        As a hypertext expression – in an inscription --, this orthographic composition signifies logical combination of pictographs signifying sounds of two words: kuṭi, ‘water-carrier’ PLUS kanka’rim-of-jar

        This hypertext expression is deciphered by identifying words sounding similar (homonyms) to the hieroglyph words. The two similar sounding words are: kuṭhi ‘smelter’ PLUS kanka.karṇīka ‘scribe, supercargo, helmsman’ Thus, the plain text reading (artha, ‘meaning’) is: smelter supercargo.

        The URL link  presents over 800 monographs explaining the form and functions of Meluhha Indus Script cipher and archaeo-metallurgical contexts dealing with thousands of inscriptions of the civilization from an extensive area extending from Hanoi (Vietnam) to Haifa (Israel) and with evidences from texts/inscriptions of ca. 4th millennium BCE. Using these mongraph resources, this Meluhha samhitā pāṭha is presented.

        Vākyapadīya of Mohenjo-daro seal m1792

        I submit that this seal is an emphatic evidence – a veritable Rosetta Stone -- for the lingua franca of the Bronze Age Meluhha writing system. All the words used in hypertext expressions of the Script corpora are Meluhha spoken forms, Vākyapadīya of a linguistic area, Bhāratīya sprachbund (language union) from ca. 5th millennium BCE Tin-Bronze Revolution. Further researches are needed to outline the formation and evolution of Bhāratīya language kaleidoscope.

        m1792a (MarshallMohenjo-Daro and the Indus Civilization (1931), Vol. 3., Plate CVI, # 93.) Size: ca. 1 in. square

        Field symbol:  kõda ‘young bull-calf’. Rebus: kũdār ‘turner’; kundana ‘fine gold’ (Kannada). कुन्द [p= 291,2] one of कुबेर's nine treasures (N. of a गुह्यक Gal. ) L.کار کند kār-kund (corrup. of P کار کن) adj. Adroit, clever, experienced. 2. A director, a manager; (Fem.) کار کنده kār-kundaʿh.  (Pashto)

        The cartouched hieroglyph is the key hypertext expression.

        Meaning, artha of inscription: Trade (and metalwork wealth production) of kōnda sangara 'metalwork engraver'... PLUS (wealth categories cited.) This seal signifies vartaka bell-metal, brass metal castings smithy-forge merchant, mintmaster, helmsman.

        Line 1:

        dula‘duplicated’ rebus: dul ‘metal casting’PLUS kolmo‘rice plant’ rebus: kolilmi ‘smithy, forgePLUS kanka, karṇika 'rim of jar' rebus: karṇī 'supercargo, scribeकर्णिक 'steersman, helmsman'

        Line 2:

        ayo 'fish' rebus: aya 'ironayas 'alloy metal' (R̥gveda) PLUS khambhaṛā 'fish-fin’ rebus: kammaṭa 'mint, coiner, coinage'.

        Line 3:

        Circumscipt dula ‘two’ rebus: dui ‘metal casting’ PLUS kanka, karṇika 'rim of jar' rebus: karṇī 'supercargo, scribeकर्णिक 'steersman, helmsman' PLUS vártikā f. ʻ quail ʼ (R̥gveda) vartaka ‘round stone’ rebus: vartaka ‘bell-metal, brass, merchant (pattar in Tamil)’பத்தர்; pattar, n. perh. vartaka. Merchants; வியாபாரிகள். (W.)

        Thus, helmsman, merchant in charge of bell-metal metal casting, mint and cargo.

        vartaka = a duck (Skt.) batak = a duck (Gujarati)  vartikā quail (Rigveda) baṭṭai quail (Nepalese) vártikā f. ʻ quail ʼ RV. 2. vārtika -- m. lex. 3. var- takā -- f. lex. (eastern form ac. to Kātyāyana: S. Lévi JA 1912, 498), °ka -- m. Car., vārtāka -- m. lex. [Cf.vartīra -- m. Suśr., °tira -- lex., *vartakara -- ] 1. Ash. uwŕe/ ʻ partridge ʼ NTS ii 246 (connexion denied NTS v 340), Paš.snj. waṭīˊ; K. hāra -- wüṭü f. ʻ species of waterfowl ʼ(hāra -< śāˊra --).

        Inscriptions are data archives of metalwork artha, ‘wealth creation’, kharaḍa‘account day-books’

        Copper tablet (H2000-4498/9889-01) with raised script found in Trench 43. Harappa. (Source: Slide 351. Eight such tablets have been found (Harvard Archaeology Project, HARP). Embossed writing system: करडा (p. 78) karaḍā m The arrangement of bars or embossed lines (plain or fretted with little knobs) raised upon a तार of gold by pressing and driving it upon the अवटी or grooved stamp. Such तार is used for the ornament बुगडी, for the hilt of a पट्टा or other sword &c. Applied also to any similar barform or line-form arrangement (pectination) whether embossed or indented; as the edging of a rupee &c. 

        खरड (p. 113) kharaḍa f (खरडणें) A hurriedly written or drawn piece; a scrawl; a mere tracing or rude sketch. खरडा (p. 113) kharaḍā m (खरडणें) Scrapings (as from a culinary utensil). 2 Bruised or coarsely broken peppercorns &c.: a mass of bruised मेथ्या&c. 3 also खरडें n A scrawl; a memorandum-scrap; a foul, blotted, interlined piece of writing. 4 also खरडें n A rude sketch; a rough draught; a foul copy; a waste-book; a day-book; a note-book (Marathi) खरोष्टी [p= 337,3] f. a kind of written character or alphabet Lalit. x , 29; °रोट्ठि Jain.

        m0266.1306 Field symbol: rango 'buffalo' Rebus: rango 'pewter' raṅga3 n. ʻ tin ʼ lex. [Cf. nāga -- 2, vaṅga -- 1]Pk. raṁga -- n. ʻ tin ʼ; P. rã̄g f., rã̄gā m. ʻ pewter, tin ʼ (← H.); Ku. rāṅ ʻ tin, solder ʼ, gng. rã̄k; N. rāṅrāṅo ʻ tin, solder ʼ, A. B. rāṅ; Or. rāṅga ʻ tin ʼ, rāṅgā ʻ solder, spelter ʼ, Bi. Mth. rã̄gā, OAw. rāṁga; H. rã̄g f., rã̄gā m. ʻ tin, pewter ʼ; Si. ran̆ga ʻ tin ʼ.(CDIAL 10562)
        kole.l 'temple' rebus: kole.l'smithy, forge'  Or, warehouse  kuṭhī granary, factory (M.)(CDIAL 3546). koṭho = a warehouse. 

        sal ‘splinter
        ’ rebus: sal ‘workshop’ PLUS pōlaḍu'black drongo' pōḷad 'steel' पोलाद [ pōlādan (or P) Steel PLUS circumscript (lozenge) Split parenthesis: mũh, muhã 'ingot' or muhã 'quantity of metal produced at one time in a native smelting furnace.' pōlaḍu 'black drongo' pōḷad 'steel' पोलाद [ pōlāda ] n ( or P) Steel. पोलादी a Of steel. (Marathi) ولاد polād, s.m. (6th) The finest kind of steel. Sing. and Pl. folād P فولاد folād or fūlād, s.m. (6th) Steel. Sing. and Pl. folādī P فولادي folādī or fūlādī, adj. Made of steel, steel. (Pashto) pŏlād प्वलाद् or phōlād फोलाद् मृदुलोहविशेषः m. steel (Gr.M.; Rām. 431, 635, phōlād).pŏlödi pōlödi  phōlödi (= ) लोहविशेषमयः adj. c.g. of steel, steel (Rām. 19, 974, 167, pōo) pŏlāduwu शस्त्रविशेषमयः adj. (f. pŏlādüvü made of steel (H. v, 4).(Kashmiri)

        खांडाkhāṇḍā A jag, notch, or indentation (as upon the edge of a tool or weapon) rebus:  khaṇḍa 'implements'.

        ayo 'fish' rebus: aya 'ironayas 'alloy metal' (R̥gveda) PLUS adaren ‘lid’ rebus: aduru ‘native metal’ (Kannada)

        ayo, aya'fish' rebus: aya'iron'ayas 'metal alloy' (Rigveda) PLUS Hieroglyphढाळ (p. 204) ḍhāḷa Slope, inclination of a plane. Rebus: ḍhālako = a large metal ingot . Thus, large metal or metal alloy ingot.

        kamaḍha 'crab' Rebus: kammaṭa 'mint, coiner, coinage'. ḍato = claws of crab (Santali) Rebus: dhātu 'mineral ore'

        kanka, karṇika 'rim of jar' rebus: karṇī 'supercargo, scribeकर्णिक 'steersman, helmsman'

        kāru pincers, tongs. Rebus: khār खार् 'blacksmith' PLUS xoli 'fish-tail' rebus: kolhe 'smelter', kol 'working in iron' PLUS kolom'three' rebus; kolimi'smithy, forge'.

        m0299 Composite animal with the body of a ram, horns of a bull, trunk of an elephant, hindlegs of a tiger and an upraise serpent-like tail
        bhaṭā 'warrior' rebus: bhaṭa 'furnace' 

        karã̄ n. pl. wristlets, bangles Rebus: khārखार् ‘

        Joined parts of a composite animal hypertext See m0300 for unambiguous identification of hieroglyph components of the hypertext expression

        Zebu horns: Field symbol: पोळ [ pōḷa ] m A bull dedicated to the gods, marked with a trident and discus, and set at large. पोळी [ pōḷī ] dewlap. पोळाpōḷā ] 'zebubos indicus taurus' rebus: पोळाpōḷā ] 'magnetite, ferrite ore: Fe3O4' 

        Trunk of elephant: karibha, ibha ‘elephant’ rebus: karba, ib ‘iron’ ibbo ‘merchant

        Hindpart of tiger: Field symbol: kul ‘tiger’ (Santali); kōlu id. (Telugu) kōlupuli = Bengal tiger (Telugu) कोल्हा [ kōlhā ] कोल्हें [kōlhēṃ] A jackal (Marathi) Rebus: kol, kolhe, ‘the koles, iron smelters speaking a language akin to that of Santals’ (Santali) kol ‘working in iron’ (Tamil)

        Forepart of ram: Tor. miṇḍ 'ram', miṇḍā́l 'markhor' (CDIAL 10310) Rebus: meḍ (Ho.); mẽṛhet 'iron' (Munda.Ho.).

        Cobra hood as tail: phaṇi ‘cobra hood’ rebus: phaṇi ‘lead or zinc’; paṇi ‘merchant, marketplace’

        Scarves on neck: dhatu ‘scarfrebus: dhatu = mineral (Santali)

        Human face: mũh 'face' Rebus mũhã̄ 'iron furnace output'

        Body of bovine: dhangar ‘bull’ rebus: dhangar ‘blacksmith

        Body of one-horned young bull: kõda ‘young bull-calf’. Rebus: kũdār ‘turner’; Ta. kuntaṉam interspace for setting gems in a jewel; fine gold (< Te.). Ka. kundaṇa setting a precious stone in fine gold; fine gold; kundana fine gold. Tu. kundaṇa pure gold. Te. kundanamu fine gold used in very thin foils in setting precious stones; setting precious stones with fine gold (DEDR 1725)


        Hieroglyphs. Centrepiece is a scorpion, surrounded by a pair of oxen (bulls), rhinoceros, monkey, elephant, a tiger looking back, a standing person with spread legs. This hieroglyph cluster is duplicated on a six tablets. m02015 A,B, m2016, m1393, m1394, m1395, m0295, m0439, m440, m0441 A,B On some tablets, such a glyphic composition (hypertext) is also accompanied (on obverse side, for example, cf. m2015A and m0295) with a glyphic of two or more joined tiger heads to a single body. In one inscription (m0295), the text inscriptions are also read. bica ‘scorpion’ rebus: bica ‘haematite, ferrite ore’ kola ‘tiger’ rebus:kol ‘furnace, forge’ kol ‘metal’ PLUS krammara ‘look back’ rebus: kamar‘smith’ karabha ‘trunk of elephant’ ibha ‘elephant’ rebus: karba ‘iron’ ib‘iron’ ibbo ‘merchant’ kaṇḍa ‘rhinoceros’ rebus; kaṇḍa ‘implements’kuThAru ‘monkey’ rebus: kuThAru ‘armourer’ dula ‘two’ rebus: dul ‘metal casting’ dhangar ‘bull’ rebus; dhangar ‘blacksmith’. .barada, balad 'ox' rebus: bharata,baran 'factitious alloy of copper, pewter, tin'.

        m2015, m0295

        kola ‘tiger’ rebus: kol ‘furnace, forge’ cāli 'Interlocking bodies' (IL 3872) Rebus: sal 'workshop' (Santali) Hieroglyph of joined, interlocked bodies: cāli (IL 3872); rebus: śālika (IL) village of artisans. cf. sala_yisu = joining of metal (Ka.)

        Hieroglyphs and rebus readings: mũh 'face' Rebus: mũhe 'ingot' kola 'woman' kola 'tiger' Rebus: kol 'working in iron' Nahali (kol ‘woman’) and Santali (kul ‘tiger’; kol ‘kolhe, smelter’)

        h097 [Pleiades, twigs (on head), ladle, rimless pot]

        [Pleiades, (twigs as headdress) scarfed, framework, scarfed person, worshipper, markhorficus religiosa] Brief memoranda:

        Hieroglyph: మండ [ maṇḍa ] manḍa. [Tel.] n. A twig with leaves on it. Rebus: mã̄ḍ m. ʻ array of instruments &c. (CDIAL 9736) maṇḍa 'iron dross, slag' Sa. <i>mE~R~hE~'d</i> `iron'.  ! <i>mE~RhE~d</i>(M). Ma. <i>mErhE'd</i> `iron'.Mu. <i>mERE'd</i> `iron'.  ~ <i>mE~R~E~'d</i> `iron'.  ! <i>mENhEd</i>(M).Ho <i>meD</i> `iron'.Bj. <i>merhd</i>(Hunter) `iron'.KW <i>mENhEd</i> (Munda)

        bahulā f. pl. ʻ the Pleiades ʼ VarBr̥S., °likā -- f. pl. lex. [bahulá -- ]Kal. bahul ʻ the Pleiades ʼ, Kho. ból, (Lor.) boulbolh, Sh. (Lor.) b*lle.(CDIAL 9195) பாகுலம் pākulam , n. < bāhula. The month of Kārttikai = November-December; கார்த்திகைமாதம். (W.) పావడము [ pāvaḍamu ] pāvaḍamu. [Tel.] n. A present, gift. కానుకबाहुल्य [ bāhulya ] n (S) Abundance, copiousness, plenty. Rebus: bagalo = an Arabian merchant vessel (G.) bagala = an Arab boat of a particular description (Ka.); bagalā (M.); bagarige, bagarage = a kind of vessel (Ka.)

        1629 Pict-82   Person seated on a pedestal flanked on either side by a kneeling adorant and a hooded serpent rearing up. Field symbol: bhaTa 'worshipper in a temple' Rebus: bhaTa 'furnace'.
        kamaḍha 'penance' (Prakritam) rebus: kammaṭa 'mint, coiner, coinage'

        phaNI ‘cobra hood’ rebus: phaNi ‘lead or zinc

        மேடை mēṭai, n. [T. mēḍa.]  Platform, raised floor'rebus: meḍ 'ironmed 'copper'

        kanac 'corner' rebus: kancu 'bell-metal' PLUS sal 'splinter' rebus: sal 'workshop'. Thus bronze/bell-metal workshop.

        ayo 'fish' rebus: aya 'ironayas 'alloy metal' (R̥gveda) PLUS khambhaṛā 'fish-fin’ rebus: kammaṭa 'mint, coiner, coinage'.

        karã̄ n. pl. wristlets, bangles Rebus: khārखार् ‘blacksmith

        dula ‘two’ rebus: dul ‘metal casting

        kanka, karṇika 'rim of jar' rebus: karṇī 'supercargo, scribeकर्णिक 'steersman, helmsman'

        m1103.1337 Field symbol: पोळ [ pōḷa ] m A bull dedicated to the gods, marked with a trident and discus, and set at large. पोळी [ pōḷī ] dewlap. पोळाpōḷā ] 'zebubos indicus taurus' rebus: पोळाpōḷā ] 'magnetite, ferrite ore: Fe3O4' 

        kole.l 'temple' rebus: kole.l 'smithy, forge'  Or, warehouse  kuṭhī granary, factory (M.)(CDIAL 3546). koṭho = a warehouse. 

        baṭa 'rimless, wide-mouthed pot' rebus: bhaṭa 'furnace' PLUS ḍabu 'an iron spoon' (Santali) Rebus: ḍab, ḍhimba, ḍhompo 'lump (ingot?). Thus, together, furnace ingots.

        dula‘duplicated’ rebus: dul ‘metal casting’PLUS kolmo‘rice plant’ rebus: kolilmi ‘smithy, forge’. Thus, metal casting forge. 

        ranku 'liquid measure' rebus: ranku 'tin'

        sal 'splinter' rebus sal 'workshop' PLUS āra 'spokes' rebus: āra 'brass' (DEDR 856) era, er-a = eraka =?nave; erako_lu = the iron axle of a carriage (Ka.M.); cf. irasu (Ka.lex.)[Note Sign 391 and its ligatures Signs 392 and 393 may connote a spoked-wheel,nave of the wheel through which the axle passes; cf. ara_, spoke].Rebus: moltencast metal: Kur. elkhnā to pour liquid out (by tilting a vessel standing on the ground); elkhrnā to be poured out. Malt. eqe to pour out from a vessel; To. eṟ- (eṟQ-) to scoop up (water with vessel). Ka. eṟe to pour any liquids, cast (as metal); n. pouring; eṟacu, ercu to scoop, sprinkle, scatter, strew, sow; eṟaka, eraka any metal infusion; molten state, fusion. Tu. eraka molten, cast (as metal); eraguni to melt. Kur. ecchnā to dash a liquid out or over (by scooping, splashing, besprinkling). (DEDR 840, 866) eraka= copper (Ka.) eruvai =copper (Ta.); ere - a dark-red colour (Ka.) (DEDR 817). eraka, era, er-a= syn. erka, copper, weapons (Ka.) erka = ekke (Tbh.of arka) aka (Tbh.of arka) copper (metal); 

        crystal (Kannada)

        Decipherment of Dholavira Signboard which repeats the spoked wheel hieroglyph creating a hypertext of three segments

        Spoked-wheel is an Indus Script hieroglyph. The same spoked-wheel hieroglyph adorns the Dholavira Sign-boardm, occurs four times on three segments of a proclamation.

        Three segments of Dholavira Sign-board are detailed.

        An artistic reconstruction of the Signboard on the Gateway, making the message visible to navigating, seafaring merchants from the Persian Gulf, Indian Ocean..

         Northern Gateway, Dholavira

        Dholavira Signboard inscription of gypsum inlays on wood measures 3 m. long. Each of the 10 signs is 37 cm. high and 25 to 27 cm. wide and made of pieces of white gypsum inlays; the signs were apparently inlaid in a wooden plank. The conjecture is that this wooden plank was mounted on the Northern Gateway as a Signboard. 

        The Signboard which adorned the Northern Gateway of the citadel of Dholavira was an announcement of the metalwork repertoire of dhokra kamarcire perdue metalcasters and other smiths working with metal alloys. The entire Indus Script Corpora are veritable metalwork catalogs.

        Segment 1: Working in mineral ores, molten cast metal/copper, lathe (work)

        kamaḍha 'crab' Rebus: kammaṭa 'mint, coiner, coinage'. ḍato = claws of crab (Santali) Rebus: dhātu 'mineral ore' (Rigveda).

        sangaḍa 'pair' Rebus: sangaḍa ‘lathe’ (Gujarati) Alternative: dula‘two’ rebus: dul ‘metal casting

        āra 'spokes' rebus: āra 'brass' (DEDR 856) era, er-a = eraka =?nave; erako_lu = the iron axle of a carriage (Ka.M.); cf. irasu (Ka.lex.)[Note Sign 391 and its ligatures Signs 392 and 393 may connote a spoked-wheel,nave of the wheel through which the axle passes; cf. ara_, spoke].

        Rebus: moltencast metal: Kur. elkhnā to pour liquid out (by tilting a vessel standing on the ground); elkhrnā to be poured out. Malt. eqe to pour out from a vessel; To. eṟ- (eṟQ-) to scoop up (water with vessel). Ka. eṟe to pour any liquids, cast (as metal); n. pouring; eṟacu, ercu to scoop, sprinkle, scatter, strew, sow; eṟaka, eraka any metal infusion; molten state, fusion. Tu. eraka molten, cast (as metal); eraguni to melt. Kur. ecchnā to dash a liquid out or over (by scooping, splashing, besprinkling). (DEDR 840, 866) eraka= copper (Ka.) eruvai =copper (Ta.); ere - a dark-red colour (Ka.) (DEDR 817). eraka, era, er-a= syn. erka, copper, weapons (Ka.)erka = ekke (Tbh.of arka) aka (Tbh. of arka) copper (metal); crystal (Kannada)

        Segment 2: Workshops for native metal tools, brass, pots and pans, metalware, engraving (molten cast copper)

        खांडा [ khāṇḍā ] m  A jag, notch, or indentation (as upon the edge of a tool or weapon). (Marathi) Rebus: khāṇḍā ‘tools, pots and pans, metal-ware’.

        aḍaren, ḍaren lid, cover (Santali) Rebus: aduru ‘native metal’ (Ka.) aduru = gan.iyinda tegadu karagade iruva aduru = ore taken from the mine and not subjected to melting in a furnace (Kannada) (Siddhānti Subrahmaya’ śāstri’s new interpretation of the Amarakośa, Bangalore, Vicaradarpana Press, 1872, p. 330)

        kanac 'corner' rebus: kancu 'bell-metal'

        Alternative:koṇḍa bend (Ko.); Tu. Kōḍi  corner; kōṇṭu angle, corner, crook. Nk. kōnṭa corner (DEDR 2054b)  G. khū̃ṭṛī  f. ʻangleʼ Rebus: kõdā ‘to turn in a lathe’(B.) कोंद kōnda ‘engraver, lapidary setting or infixing gems’ (Marathi) koḍ ‘artisan’s workshop’ (Kuwi) koḍ  = place where artisans work (G.) ācāri koṭṭya ‘smithy’ (Tu.) कोंडण [kōṇḍaṇa] f A fold or pen. (Marathi) B. kõdā ‘to turn in a lathe’; Or.kū̆nda ‘lathe’, kũdibā, kū̃d ‘to turn’ (→ Drav. Kur. Kū̃d ’ lathe’) (CDIAL 3295)  A. kundār, B. kũdār, ri, Or.Kundāru; H. kũderā m. ‘one who works a lathe, one who scrapes’, rī f., kũdernā ‘to scrape, plane, round on a lathe’; kundakara—m. ‘turner’ (Skt.)(CDIAL 3297). कोंदण [ kōndaṇa ] n (कोंदणें) Setting or infixing of gems.(Marathi) খোদকার [ khōdakāra ] n an engraver; a carver. খোদকারি n. engraving; carving; interference in other’s work. খোদাই [ khōdāi ] n engraving; carving. খোদাইকরা v. to engrave; to carve. খোদানো v. & n. en graving; carving. খোদিত [ khōdita ]  engraved. (Bengali) खोदकाम [ khōdakāma ] n Sculpture; carved work or work for the carver. खोदगिरी [ khōdagirī ] f Sculpture, carving, engraving: also sculptured or carved work. खोदणावळ [ khōdaṇāvaḷa ] f (खोदणें) The price or cost of sculpture or carving. खोदणी [ khōdaṇī ] f (Verbal of खोदणें) Digging, engraving &c. 2 fig. An exacting of money by importunity. V लावमांड. 3 An instrument to scoop out and cut flowers and figures from paper. 4 A goldsmith’s die. खोदणें [ khōdaṇēṃ ] v c & i ( H) To dig. 2 To engrave. खोदखोदूनविचारणें or –पुसणें To question minutely and searchingly, to probe. खोदाई [ khōdāī ] f (H.) Price or cost of digging or of sculpture or carving. खोदींव [ khōdīṃva ] p of खोदणें Dug. 2 Engraved, carved, sculptured. (Marathi) kunda, 'a treasure of Kubera' (Samskrtam) kundana'fine gold' (Kannada.Tulu).

        āra 'spokes' rebus: āra 'brass' (DEDR 856) era, er-a = eraka =?nave; erako_lu = the iron axle of a carriage (Ka.M.); cf. irasu (Ka.lex.)[Note Sign 391 and its ligatures Signs 392 and 393 may connote a spoked-wheel,nave of the wheel through which the axle passes; cf. ara_, spoke].

        Rebus: moltencast metal: Kur. elkhnā to pour liquid out (by tilting a vessel standing on the ground); elkhrnā to be poured out. Malt. eqe to pour out from a vessel; To. eṟ- (eṟQ-) to scoop up (water with vessel). Ka. eṟe to pour any liquids, cast (as metal); n. pouring; eṟacu, ercu to scoop, sprinkle, scatter, strew, sow; eṟaka, eraka any metal infusion; molten state, fusion. Tu. eraka molten, cast (as metal); eraguni to melt. Kur. ecchnā to dash a liquid out or over (by scooping, splashing, besprinkling). (DEDR 840, 866) eraka= copper (Ka.) eruvai =copper (Ta.); ere - a dark-red colour (Ka.) (DEDR 817). eraka, era, er-a= syn. erka, copper, weapons (Ka.)erka = ekke (Tbh.of arka) aka (Tbh. of arka) copper (metal); crystal (Kannada)

        Segment 3:  Coppersmith mint scribe, furnace, minerals smelter, workshop (molten cast copper)

        loa 'ficus glomerata' Rebus: loha 'copper, iron'.   PLUS karNI ‘ears’ rebus: karṇī 'supercargo, scribe'; loa ’fig leaf; Rebus: loh ‘(copper) metal’ kamaḍha 'ficus religiosa' (Skt.); kamaṭa = portable furnace for melting precious metals (Te.); kampaṭṭam = mint (Ta.) The unique ligatures on the 'leaf' hieroglyph may be explained as a professional designation: loha-kāra 'metalsmith'; kāruvu  [Skt.] n. 'An artist, artificer. An agent'.(Telugu). 
        khuṇṭa 'peg’; khũṭi = pin (M.) rebus: kuṭi= furnace (Santali) kūṭa ‘workshop’ kuṇḍamu ‘a pit for receiving and preserving consecrated fire’ (Te.) kundār turner (A.); kũdār, kũdāri (B.)

        dāmā ʻ peg to tie a buffalo -- calf to ʼ; B. dām,dāmā ʻ cord ʼ(Assamese); Ku. dauṇo m., °ṇī f. ʻ peg for tying cattle to ʼ (CDIAL 6283) Rebus: dhāˊtu n. ʻ substance ʼ RV., m. ʻ element ʼ MBh., ʻ metal, mineral, ore (esp. of a red colour) ʼ Mn., ʻ ashes of the dead ʼ lex., Pa. dhātu -- m. ʻ element, ashes of the dead, relic ʼ; KharI. dhatu ʻ relic ʼ; Pk. dhāu -- m. ʻ metal, red chalk ʼ; N. dhāu ʻ ore (esp. of copper) ʼ; Or. ḍhāu ʻ red chalk, red ochre ʼ (whence ḍhāuā ʻ reddish ʼ; M. dhāūdhāv m.f. ʻ a partic. soft red stone ʼ (whence dhā̆vaḍ m. ʻ a caste of iron -- smelters ʼ, dhāvḍī ʻ composed of or relating to iron ʼ); -- Si.  ʻ relic ʼ; -- (CDIAL 6773)  هژدات haj̱ẕ-dāt, s.m. (6th) (corrup. of S اژدهات) The name of a mixed metal, bell-metal, brass. Sing. and Pl. د هژداتو غر da haj̱ẕ-dāto g̠ẖar, A mountain of brass, a brazen mountain.

        धावडी [ dhāvaḍī ] a Relating to the class धावड. Hence 2 Composed of or relating to iron.धवड [ dhavaḍa ] m (Or धावड) A class or an individual of it. They are smelters of iron.

        āra 'spokes' rebus: āra 'brass' (DEDR 856) era, er-a = eraka =?nave; erako_lu = the iron axle of a carriage (Ka.M.); cf. irasu (Ka.lex.)[Note Sign 391 and its ligatures Signs 392 and 393 may connote a spoked-wheel,nave of the wheel through which the axle passes; cf. ara_, spoke].

        Rebus: moltencast metal: Kur. elkhnā to pour liquid out (by tilting a vessel standing on the ground); elkhrnā to be poured out. Malt. eqe to pour out from a vessel; To. eṟ- (eṟQ-) to scoop up (water with vessel). Ka. eṟe to pour any liquids, cast (as metal); n. pouring; eṟacu, ercu to scoop, sprinkle, scatter, strew, sow; eṟaka, eraka any metal infusion; molten state, fusion. Tu. eraka molten, cast (as metal); eraguni to melt. Kur. ecchnā to dash a liquid out or over (by scooping, splashing, besprinkling). (DEDR 840, 866) eraka= copper (Ka.) eruvai =copper (Ta.); ere - a dark-red colour (Ka.) (DEDR 817). eraka, era, er-a= syn. erka, copper, weapons (Ka.)erka = ekke (Tbh.of arka) aka (Tbh. of arka) copper (metal); crystal (Kannada)

        ಕಾಯಕವೇ ಕೈಲಾಸ ‘Work is worship’-- ātmā of Meluhha artisans and seafaring merchants of Bronze Age.


        Binjor is the site where a yajnakunda with an octagonal yupa (proclamation of performance of Soma Yaga) was discovered. The seal inscription reads:

        Circumscript four:: gaṇḍa 'four' rebus: khaṇḍa 'implements' PLUS ayo 'fish' rebus: aya 'ironayas 'alloy metal' (R̥gveda)  PLUS khambhaṛā 'fish-fin rebus: kammaṭa 'mint, coiner, coinage'.

        PLUS khambhaṛā 'fish-fin rebus: kammaṭa 'mint, coiner, coinage'. ḍhāla f (S through H) The grand flag of an army directing its march and encampments: also the standard or banner of a chieftain rebus: ḍhālako 'ingot

        pōlaḍu, 'black drongo' rebus: pōlaḍ 'steel'. Thus, steel ingots.

        Indus Script inscriptions of 4th-3rd millennium BCE are data archives of foundry corporate forms, with details of maritime cargo of seafaring merchants of Meluhha. Information provided is about artha, ‘wealth creation, puruṣārtha‘life’s purpose, kāyaka’.

        There is evidence from Susa of imports from Meluhha of metal artifacts as cargo packaged in a storage pot. Details in Susa pot with Indus Script hieroglyphs is a 'rosetta stone' for Indus Script Corpora of metalwork proclamations  

         pōlaḍu 'black drongo' pōḷad 'steel' 
         ayo, aya 'fish' rebus: aya 'iron' (Gujarati), ayas'alloy metal'(gveda)

        A bird and a fish painted on the top register of the jar are Indus Script hieroglyphs, proclaiming the metal contents of the jar.

        QED "quod erat demonstrandum" ("that which was to be demonstrated") is Indus Script. 

        This demonstration has been presented in over 7000 epigraphs with the cipher of Meluhha (mleccha) hypertexts and meanings, in the 3-volume work Epigraphia Indus Script – Hypertexts & Meanings.

        This primary source book should adorn community libraries and academic institutions and should be of interest to all students and researchers of civilization studies.

        S. Kalyanaraman
        Sarasvati Research Center
        May 21, 2017

        0 0

        One feels sorry for Amit Shah. Three years after the regime-change in the country, he thought it safe to take up one major (although possibly unstated) agenda of the new government. This was the de-sanctification of the founding father of the Gandhi-Nehru-Gandhi (GNG) dynasty.

        Amit bhai, therefore, took on the sanctum sanctorum of the earlier rulers of this ancient civilisation of ours. The target, as the nation knows, was the icon and high-priest, Mohandas Karamchand Gandhi (MKG), who had been placed on an unreachably high pedestal for the last seven decades and more. From this elevated perch, the old man had ruled over our minds and spirits as ruthlessly and as completely as Papa Doc Duvalier in Haiti and the North Korean supremo Kim IL Sung. Compared to MKG’s reign, old Adolf lasted for a mere 12 years, while Idi Amin Dada, Gaddafi and Saddam Hussain had longer stints. One is constrained to point out here that three out of these four self-anointed icons of their respective countries met gory deaths.

        MKG’s divinity was unquestioned and unquestionable for any desi citizen. Even the comrades had somehow bought into his fable, in the 1970s and 1980s, although their motives were far from pristine, as is invariably the case for this lot. Never you mind that the whole spectacle had been slightly dented in the twilight years of the Gandhi-Nehru-Gandhi vaudeville show, when the babus in the Union Government, 2011, were forced to admit in their reply to an RTI application from a ten-year-old girl, that there was no official sanction for the appellation “Father of the Nation” that was being used so grandiloquently and unquestioningly for MKG during the last seven decades. 

        Amit Shah, being a street fighter, should have known that MKG has an enormous cottage industry that follows him - and does very well out of it, thank you. Their daily genuflection before the great man’s memory is their path to salvation, not to mention various earthly goodies. There are innumerable “sansthas” or organisations that cater only to the MKG fairy tale and live off the fat of the land from government grants and aid.

        However, now is as good a time as any to pose some basic and fundamental questions about MKG’s role in history and his status as the “Father of the Nation”. Any self-respecting nation must assess its icons periodically, though, for all these decades, MKG got away with unquestioned loyalty and obeisance from his camp followers, led from the front by the Republic of India’s Central government. The interesting fact is that some of these governments had different political hues apart from MKG’s own Indian National Congress. All this contributed to a halo around MKG that made him untouchable (pardon the pun) for all practical purposes.

        If the comrades could have their de-Stalinisation exercise under their own party leadership so many years ago, I see no reason why India should not attempt a similar move under the NaMo regime now. In all fairness, this writer has been pleading for this self-cleansing for many years. Initially, I was ploughing a lonely furrow, at least in the English media, but it is very reassuring to have many others in the same group as mine in the last few years. With Amit Shah letting loose a deadly salvo, it would be most unwise not to follow it up, especially since the poor man is getting deadly flak from the khadi forces everywhere in the country.

        There are four attributes or parameters on which I will assess MKG, not necessarily in any order of priority. The first is his highly questionable ethical and normative mind-set in politics and social life, despite the public posturing he resorted to. Just two examples should suffice. MKG’s entire interface with Subhas Bose was a copy-book sample of Tammany Hall politics that would have done Lalu and the Mulayam Singh lot proud any time. MKG launched the non-cooperation movement in 1920, promising his followers freedom in just one year, when the British Raj, he believed, would come to a grinding halt. After more than a year, and even with 60,000satyagrahis in prison cells across the country, the Raj remained firm.

        Soon, after the Chauri Chaura incident, MKG did one of his theatrical acts and proclaimed he had committed a “Himalayan blunder” in launching Satyagraha without sufficient “soul-cleansing”. He called off the non-cooperation movement in a bizarre Kejriwal-type gesture that flummoxed ordinary Indians who had plunged into the freedom struggle. Step in Jawahar Lal Nehru (JLN). He decided to put in his lot with MKG, although they were poles apart culturally and socially.

        Subhas Bose was proving to be immensely popular with the Congress rank and file and among the general public. After he became Congress President twice in 1938 and 1939, the duo of MKG and JLN went into overdrive to protect their turf. Subhas was in favour of Purna Swaraj and advocated the use of force against the British, if necessary. MKG and JLN, as was their wont, waffled. Bose tried to maintain the party’s unity, but MKG played his underhand games. For the 1939 Tripuri session of the Congress, he put up his straw candidate, a lightweight called Pattabhi Sitaramayya.

        Bose, though very unwell, arrived at the session on a stretcher, and went on to win the Presidential election. MKG’s notorious statement that “Pattabhi’s defeat is my defeat” is a blatant blot on his halo. It revives memories of all the devious manipulations of his clique that compelled Bose to resign from his position as Congress President and start his own party, the Forward Block, in due course. As a footnote, we should remember that it was Netaji who addressed MKG in his broadcast from Rangoon in 1944 as “the father of the nation”.

        Fast forward to 1947 when MKG, once again, stooped to devious lows to ensure that Sardar Patel would not become PM and the mantle would fall on Nehru, MKG’s trusted confidante. The wily MKG waged his campaign to deny the Sardar the position of Congress President, which was the logical stepping stone to being independent India’s first Prime Minister. The story takes a number of complicated twists and turns but the bottom line is that MKG asked Sardar Patel to withdraw his nomination for the Congress President’s post after it became evident that JLN had little support. The true patriot that he was, the Sardar went along with MKG’s diktat, since he considered national service to be more important than a political post. The chameleon-like Azad also wanted the PM’s gaddi but fell in line and supported JLN.

        It would be appropriate to end this segment of the essay with Rajaji’s assessment of this sad episode in our history. This is what CR wrote in his journal “SWARAJYA” many years after the incident when his conscience stirred at long last:


         “When the independence of India was coming close upon us and Gandhiji was the silent master of our affairs, he had come to the decision that Jawaharlal, who among the Congress leaders was the most familiar with foreign affairs, should be the Prime Minister of India, although he knew Vallabhbhai would be the best administrator among them all…

        Undoubtedly it would have been better if Nehru had been asked to be the Foreign Minister and Patel made the Prime Minister. I too fell into the error of believing that Jawaharlal was the more enlightened person of the two… A myth had grown about Patel that he would be harsh towards Muslims. This was a wrong notion but it was the prevailing prejudice.”  (SWARAJYA, 27.11.1971).

        The second attribute of MKG that debars him from the pedestal of “Father of the Nation” or any pedestal for that matter is his appalling and reprehensible track-record during his brief stint in South Africa, before venturing back to our shores. It is a matter of record that MKG was sickeningly racist in his views about black Africans. His opposition to racial discrimination was limited to Indians. It is well documented that the fellow offered to organize a brigade of Indians to help the English colonial rulers crush an African rebellion.

        He was even appointed Sergeant-Major and earned a War Medal from the British Empire for “valour under fire”, while assisting the violent suppression of South African Blacks. The fact is that Gandhians have cleverly masked this chapter under the cover of MKG rendering medical service during the British genocide of Africans. India will forever be handicapped in its dealings with Africa if we persist with our folly about MKG.

        The third issue deals with MKG’s pusillanimous stance on Muslim communalism and violence, specifically during the Noakhali genocide of 1946. Although J.B. Kripalani, then the President-elect of the Congress, had already observed that “the attack on the Hindu population in the districts of Noakhali and Tripura was previously arranged and prepared for and was the result of League propaganda”, MKG undertook his visit to the affected area and played to the gallery.

        He realised that his PR was not going to produce any results and he came out with this bizarre pronouncement : ““My heart bleeds, my brain is strained to think that the East Bengal Hindus who were in the vanguard in the struggle for freedom, will be deprived of their ancestral home and hearth.” In other words, he was advising the East Bengal Hindus to quit their homes and not put up any resistance to the savage massacres perpetrated by the Muslims.

        The Bengal Governor, Frederick Burrows, a no-nonsense former railway trade unionist, pithily summarised MKG’s theatricals : “It will take a dozen Gandhis to make the Muslim leopard and the Hindu kid to lie down together again in that part of the world”. History confirms that the massacres of Hindus in East Bengal abated only when retaliatory riots broke out in Bihar and some districts in U.P.

        MKG’s theatricals continued a few months later after Partition had torn apart the country. In January 1948, he went on a fast to compel the Government of India to pay Pakistan Rs.55 crores, which was the residual amount of dues payable to that country by India. MKG started his fast even after Pakistan had unleashed its aggression in J&K, and he was aided and abetted in this blackmail by Mountbatten, JLN’s bosom friend. Under international law, India was perfectly entitled to withhold payments to a state engaged in hostilities and armed conflict against it.

        The last factor that goes against MKG is his appalling personal conduct with his wife and his children. In this essay, I will not even venture into other areas of MKG’s psyche that have been severely critiqued by numerous observers and analysts. However, it is an undisputed fact that MKG refused to allow penicillin to be given to Kasturba when she went down with pneumonia in 1944. The ostensible reason he proffered was that it was an alien substance. However, later on, when the great man himself, got infected with malaria, he voluntarily took quinine to treat his malady. He also allowed British doctors to perform an appendectomy on him without batting an eyelid that it was an alien operation, if ever there was one.

        His hypocrisy extended to many other aspects of life. From serving out some of his detention sentences in the Aga Khan’s palace to turning a blind eye to the specially equipped 3rd Class Railways carriages the Raj placed at his disposal, the old man never worried about minor matters. Sarojini Naidu’s epic quip about the country spending a fortune “to keep the Bapu poor” did not ruffle his feathers.

        No, MKG, you have had a great innings but this cannot go on. Someone or other will have to bring you down to terra firma. A moral and honest civilisation that has lasted for 5000 years or so, cannot live forever with doctored and embellished history.


        (The author is a socio-economic and financial analyst, based in Delhi)

        0 0

        ‘Rajinikanth can be the messiah voters seek’

         | Updated: Jun 22, 2017, 10.48 AM IST


        • Rajinikanth is most likely to take the political plunge, says RSS ideologue S Gurumurthy
        • The actor's relevance is because of the distance developing between Dravidian politics and Tamil Nadu people, Gurumurthy says
        • Every time Rajinikanth opens his mouth, a million tongues start wagging. A few who met the superstar after his exhortation to fans in May to be prepared for a 'war' have predicted his entry into politics, but none of them carries the weight of S Gurumurthy. The RSS ideologue and Thuglak's editor tells TOI that the actor is most likely to take the political plunge. "I am a friend (of Rajini), not advisor," says Gurmurthy, who feels more than half the voting population of the state is looking for an alternative, and Rajini can be the next MGR of Tamil Nadu politics.

        • Excerpts:Rajinikanth has indicated he may enter politics. What do you think?

        The relevance of Rajinikanth is because of the distance developing between Dravidian politics and Tamil Nadu people. My calculation is that out of the 35% votes which AIADMK has been getting, 15% to 16% votes are anti-DMK votes. So, all along AIADMK's own vote base was about 20%. When I met Congress leader K Kamaraj, he said our party will get 41%, DMK 42% and if M G Ramachandran takes away 10% from the DMK, Congress will be winners. I disagreed with Kamaraj. Then MGR had issued a statement saying he will meet 'the big leader' (Kamaraj). The same day or following day he was thrown out of the DMK. He was not thinking of floating a party at that time. I told Kamaraj please accept him. He said 'no'.

        MGR was in Congress before he joined DMK, wasn't he?

        Yes. I told Kamaraj if MGR takes away a sizeable number of DMK votes, he will look more anti-DMK than us, and he will gather huge crowds. So, if our anti-DMK votes go, then we will not be able to retain this 41%. This was my logic that I explained to Kamaraj. He said, "When I am there will people think MGR can defeat DMK?" MGR won the Dindigul byelection, Congress got reduced exactly by 14% and DMK votes got reduced by 20%. AIADMK got 36%. If you add the reduction in Congress votes and reduction in DMK votes that becomes the AIADMK vote bank. That dictated the course of Tamil Nadu elections from that time till today. So, 45% of the votes put together are the votes of the AIADMK and the DMK; people not committed to these parties constitute more than half of TN population, and they are looking for someone who can defeat them. They have nobody to rally around. They have been either fed up or fatigued with both these parties on various counts. That is where Rajinikanth will become relevant.

        The same Dindigul formula?

        Definitely. But, Dindigul formula worked in a different way. DMK chief M Karunanidhi was becoming a hate-figure at that time because he threw out MGR. Context is also important. Let us assume that MGR had resigned from the DMK and formed the AIADMK, he couldn't have clicked. He had to be thrown out. That creates the context. So, the fatigue or philosophical distance which has been developing in the last 25 years between the Dravidian forces and the Tamil Nadu people provides the entry point for a popular person.

        But no one seems confident about Rajinikanth taking the political plunge.

        That is because right from 1996, for 20 years, he has kept the people in suspense. But, this is the first time he has talked about his being in politics, which I consider as very significant. Otherwise he wouldn't have spoken. He sees a gap between the Dravidian parties and people, and there is a vacuum in leadership because there is virtually no leadership in the AIADMK. That is unless all these people try to build O Panneerselvam as a leader. Stalin is yet to emerge as a leader within the DMK. They are not midgets, but they are certainly of a secondary order. If Rajinikanth comes and if he has proper guidance, if he uses proper language, if he puts up a proper agenda, he may be able to make a huge difference to TN politics. The youth, particularly, are not getting attracted to either the AIADMK or the DMK. He may be able to attract the youth, particularly the educated, who are keeping out of politics.

        Are you advising him?

        He has better advisers. Why should I advise him? I am his friend.

        As a friend, what have you told him?

        I told him it was his decision. That is the difference between Cho Ramasamy and me. Cho always insisted that he should come. I always believe the most momentous decision a person has to take in his life should come from himself, or else he won't own the decision. So, I told him it is his decision, his inner call, after all, he is a spiritually evolved person and knows how to take decisions. So, I am very clear, I will not interfere in what he should do.

        Do you think he has the guts to take that decision?

        Courage comes when a man is opposed. Without opposition, you don't know what kind of courage you have. Every person's ego is tipped when he is opposed and I am happy he is being opposed.
        Do you see him aligning with BJP?

        He will probably do it because his own inclinations are that way. His mind is oriented towards what the BJP stands for.

        0 0

        Quantum physics proves that there IS an afterlife, claims scientist

        • Robert Lanza claims the theory of biocentrism says death is an illusion
        • He said life creates the universe, and not the other way round
        • This means space and time don't exist in the linear fashion we think it does
        • He uses the famous double-split experiment to illustrate his point
        • And if space and time aren't linear, then death can't exist in 'any real sense' either
        Most scientists would probably say that the concept of an afterlife is either nonsense, or at the very least unprovable.
        Yet one expert claims he has evidence to confirm an existence beyond the grave - and it lies in quantum physics.
        Professor Robert Lanza claims the theory of biocentrism teaches that death as we know it is an illusion created by our consciousness.
        Professor Robert Lanza claims the theory of biocentrism, also known as the theory of everything, teaches death as we know it is an illusion.
        Professor Robert Lanza claims the theory of biocentrism teaches death as we know it is an illusion. He believes our consciousness creates the universe, and not the other way round, and once we accept that space and time are 'tools of our minds', death can't exist in 'any real sense' either
        Professor Robert Lanza's, pictured, theory is explained in his book Biocentrism
        Professor Robert Lanza's, pictured, theory is explained in his book Biocentrism: How Life and Consciousness are the Keys to Understanding the True Nature of the Universe
        'We think life is just the activity of carbon and an admixture of molecules – we live a while and then rot into the ground,' said the scientist on his website.
        Lanza, from Wake Forest University School of Medicine in North Carolina, continued that as humans we believe in death because 'we've been taught we die', or more specifically, our consciousness associates life with bodies and we know that bodies die. 
        His theory of biocentrism, however, explains that death may not be as terminal as we think it is.

        Biocentrism is classed as the theory of everything and comes from the Greek for 'life centre'. 

        It is the believe that life and biology are central to reality and that life creates the universe, not the other way round. 
        This suggests a person's consciousness determines the shape and size of objects in the universe.
        Lanza uses the example of the way we perceive the world around us. A person sees a blue sky, and is told that the colour they are seeing is blue, but the cells in a person's brain could be changed to make the sky look green or red.


        Biocentrism is classed as the Theory of Everything and comes from the Greek for 'life centre'. It is the belief that life and biology are central to reality and that life creates the universe, not the other way round.  
        Lanza uses the example of the way we perceive the world around us. 
        A person sees a blue sky, and is told that the colour they are seeing is blue, but the cells in a person's brain could be changed to make the sky look green or red.
        Our consciousness makes sense of the world, and can be altered to change this interpretation.
        The universe is a construct of our minds, claims Lanza
        By looking at the universe from a biocentric's point of view, this also means space and time don't behave in the hard and fast ways our consciousness tell us it does. 
        In summary, space and time are 'simply tools of our mind.'
        Once this theory about space and time being mental constructs is accepted, it means death and the idea of immortality exist in a world without spatial or linear boundaries. 
        Theoretical physicists believe that there is infinite number of universes with different variations of people, and situations taking place, simultaneously. 
        Lanza added that everything which can possibly happen is occurring at some point across these multiverses and this means death can't exist in 'any real sense' either.  
        Lanza, instead, said that when we die our life becomes a 'perennial flower that returns to bloom in the multiverse.'
        'Bottom line: What you see could not be present without your consciousness,' explained Lanza. 'Our consciousness makes sense of the world.'
        By looking at the universe from a biocentric's point of view, this also means space and time don't behave in the hard and fast ways our consciousness tell us it does. In summary, space and time are 'simply tools of our mind.'
        Once this theory about space and time being mental constructs is accepted, it means death and the idea of immortality exist in a world without spatial or linear boundaries. 
        Similarly, theoretical physicists believe there is infinite number of universes with different variations of people, and situations, taking place simultaneously. 
        Lanza cites the double-slit experiment, pictured, to backup his claims.
        Lanza cites the double-slit test, pictured, to backup his claims. When scientists watch a particle pass through two slits, the particle goes through one slit or the other. If a person doesn't watch it, it acts like a wave and can go through both slits simultaneously. This means its behaviour changes based on a person's perception


        In the experiment, when scientists watch a particle pass through two slits in a barrier, the particle behaves like a bullet and goes through one slit or the other. 
        Yet if a person doesn't watch the particle, it acts like a wave.
        This means it can go through both slits at the same time.
        This demonstrates that matter and energy can display characteristics of both waves and particles, and that the behaviour of the particle changes based on a person's perception and consciousness. 
        Lanza added that everything which can possibly happen is occurring at some point across these multiverses and this means death can't exist in 'any real sense' either.  
        Lanza, instead, said that when we die our life becomes a 'perennial flower that returns to bloom in the multiverse.'
        He continued: 'Life is an adventure that transcends our ordinary linear way of thinking. When we die, we do so not in the random billiard-ball-matrix but in the inescapable-life-matrix.'
        Lanza cited the famous double-slit experiment to backup his claims.  
        In the experiment, when scientists watch a particle pass through two slits in a barrier, the particle behaves like a bullet and goes through one slit or the other. 
        Yet if a person doesn't watch the particle, it acts like a wave, This means it can go through both slits at the same time.
        This demonstrates that matter and energy can display characteristics of both waves and particles, and that behaviour of the particle changes based on a person's perception and consciousness.

        0 0

        Uber Can’t Be Fixed — It’s Time for Regulators to Shut It Down

        JUNE 21, 2017


        Benjamin Edelman is an associate professor at Harvard Business School and an adviser to various companies that compete against major platforms.

        From many passengers’ perspective, Uber is a godsend — lower fares than taxis, clean vehicles, courteous drivers, easy electronic payments. Yet the company’s mounting scandals reveal something seriously amiss, culminating in last week’s stern report from former U.S. Attorney General Eric Holder.
        Some people attribute the company’s missteps to the personal failings of founder-CEO Travis Kalanick. These have certainly contributed to the company’s problems, and his resignation is probably appropriate. Kalanick and other top executives signal by example what is and is not acceptable behavior, and they are clearly responsible for the company’s ethically and legally questionable decisions and practices.
        But I suggest that the problem at Uber goes beyond a culture created by toxic leadership. The company’s cultural dysfunction, it seems to me, stems from the very nature of the company’s competitive advantage: Uber’s business model is predicated on lawbreaking. And having grown through intentional illegality, Uber can’t easily pivot toward following the rules.

        Uber’s Fundamental Illegality

        Uber brought some important improvements to the taxi business, which are at this point well known. But by the company’s launch, in 2010, most urban taxi fleets used modern dispatch with GPS, plus custom hardware and software. In those respects, Uber was much like what incumbents had and where they were headed.
        Nor was Uber alone in realizing that expensive taxi medallions were unnecessary for prebooked trips — a tactic already used by other entrepreneurs in many cities. Uber was wise to use smartphone apps (not telephone calls) to let passengers request vehicles, and it found major cost savings in equipping drivers with standard phones (not specialized hardware). But others did this, too. Ultimately, most of Uber’s technical advances were ideas that competitors would have devised in short order.
        Uber’s biggest advantage over incumbents was in using ordinary vehicles with no special licensing or other formalities. With regular noncommercial cars, Uber and its drivers avoided commercial insurance, commercial registration, commercial plates, special driver’s licenses, background checks, rigorous commercial vehicle inspections, and countless other expenses. With these savings, Uber seized a huge cost advantage over taxis and traditional car services. Uber’s lower costs brought lower prices to consumers, with resulting popularity and growth. But this use of noncommercial cars was unlawful from the start. In most jurisdictions, longstanding rules required all the protections described above, and no exception allowed what Uber envisioned. (To be fair, Uber didn’t start it — Lyft did. More on that later on.)
        What’s more, Uber’s most distinctive capabilities focused on defending its illegality. Uber built up staff, procedures, and software systems whose purpose was to enable and mobilize passengers and drivers to lobby regulators and legislators — creating political disaster for anyone who questioned Uber’s approach. The company’s phalanx of attorneys brought arguments perfected from prior disputes, whereas each jurisdiction approached Uber independently and from a blank slate, usually with a modest litigation team. Uber publicists presented the company as the epitome of innovation, styling critics as incumbent puppets stuck in the past.
        Through these tactics, Uber muddied the waters. Despite flouting straightforward, widely applicable law in most jurisdictions, Uber usually managed to slow or stop enforcement, in due course changing the law to allow its approach. As the company’s vision became the new normal, it was easy to forget that the strategy was, at the outset, plainly illegal.

        Rotten to the Core

        Uber faced an important challenge in implementing this strategy: It isn’t easy to get people to commit crimes. Indeed, employees at every turn faced personal and professional risks in defying the law; two European executives were indicted and arrested for operating without required permits. But Uber succeeded in making lawbreaking normal and routine by celebrating its subversion of the laws relating to taxi services. Look at the company’s stated values — “super-pumped,” “always be hustlin’,” and “bold.” Respect for the law barely merits a footnote.
        Uber’s lawyers were complicit in building a culture of illegality. At normal companies, managers look to their attorneys to advise them on how to keep their business within the law. Not at Uber, whose legal team, led by Chief Legal Officer Salle Yoo, formerly its general counsel, approved its Greyball software (which concealed the company’s practices from government investigators) and even reportedly participated in the hiring of a private investigator to interview friends and colleagues of litigation adversaries.
        Having built a corporate culture that celebrates breaking the law, it is surely no accident that Uber then faced scandal after scandal. How is an Uber manager to know which laws should be followed and which ignored?

        A Race to the Bottom

        The 16th-century financier Sir Thomas Gresham famously observed that bad money drives out good. The same, I’d suggest, is true about illegal business models. If we allow an illegal business model to flourish in one sector, soon businesses in that sector and others will see that the shrewd strategy is to ignore the law, seek forgiveness rather than permission, and hope for the best.
        It was Lyft that first invited drivers to provide transportation through their personal vehicles. Indeed, Uber initially provided service only through licensed black cars properly permitted for that purpose. But as Lyft began offering cheaper service with regular cars, Uber had to respond. In a remarkable April 2013 posting, Kalanick all but admitted that casual drivers were unlawful, calling Lyft’s approach “quite aggressive” and “nonlicensed.” (After I first flagged his posting, in 2015, Uber removed the document from its site. But kept a copy. I also preserved a screenshot of the first screen of the document, a PDF of the full document, and a print-friendly PDF of the full document.) And in oral remarks at the Fortune Brainstorm Tech conference in June 2013, Kalanick said every Lyft trip with a casual driver was “a criminal misdemeanor,” citing the lack of commercial licenses and commercial insurance.
        Given Kalanick’s statements, you might imagine that Uber would have filed a lawsuit or regulatory complaint, seeking to stop unfair competition from a firm whose advantage came from breaking the law. Instead, Uber adopted and extended Lyft’s approach. Others learned and followed: Knowing that Uber would use unlicensed vehicles, competitors did so too, lest they be left behind. In normalizing violations, therefore, Uber has shifted the entire urban transport business and set an example for other sectors.

        Fixing the Problem

        It’s certainly true that, in many cases, companies that have developed a dysfunctional management culture have changed by bringing in new leaders. One might think, for example, of the bribery scandals at Siemens, where by all indications new leaders restored the company to genuine innovation and competition on the merits.
        But because Uber’s problem is rooted in its business model, changing the leadership will not fix it. Unless the model itself is targeted and punished, law breaking will continue. The best way to do this is to punish Uber (and others using similar methods) for transgressions committed, strictly enforcing prevailing laws, and doing so with little forgiveness. Since its founding, Uber has offered literally billions of rides in thousands of jurisdictions, and fines and penalties could easily reach hundreds of dollars for each of these rides.
        In most jurisdictions, the statute of limitations has not run out, so nothing prevents bringing claims on those prior violations. As a result, the company’s total exposure far exceeds its cash on hand and even its book value. If a few cities pursued these claims with moderate success, the resulting judgments could bankrupt Uber and show a generation of entrepreneurs that their innovations must follow the law.
        Uber fans might argue that shutting down the company would be throwing the baby out with the bathwater — with passengers and drivers losing out alongside Uber’s shareholders. But there’s strong evidence to the contrary.
        Take the case of Napster. Napster was highly innovative, bringing every song to a listener’s fingertips, eliminating stock-outs and trips to a physical record store. Yet Napster’s overall approach was grounded in illegality, and the company’s valuable innovations couldn’t undo the fundamental intellectual property theft. Under pressure from artists and recording companies, Napster was eventually forced to close.
        But Napster’s demise did not doom musicians and listeners to return to life before its existence. Instead, we got iTunes, Pandora, and Spotify — businesses that retained what was great and lawful about Napster while operating within the confines of copyright law.
        Like Napster, Uber gets credit for seeing fundamental inefficiencies that could be improved through smart deployment of modern IT. But that is not enough. Participation in the global community requires respect for and compliance with the law. It is tempting to discard those requirements when a company brings radically improved services, as many feel Uber did. But in declining to enforce clear-cut rules like commercial vehicle licensing, we reward lawbreaking and all its unsavory consequences. Uber’s well-publicized shortcomings show all too clearly why we ought not do so.

        0 0

        Here We Go Again: Why They Are Wrong About The Aryan Migration Debate This Time As Well

        Aravindan is a contributing editor at Swarajya.Aravindan Neelakandan June 23, 2017

        Here We Go Again: Why They Are Wrong About The Aryan Migration Debate This Time As Well
        The narrative around the Aryan ‘migration’ or Aryan ‘invasion’ is sought to be captured through propaganda and misrepresentation, every few decades. 

        And every few decades, such a campaign has to be called out. So will it be this time as well.

        It is a 2001 deja vu moment in 2017, as we saw the 1901 deja vu moment in 2001.
        Michael Bamshad Does A Herbert Risley
        In 2001, population geneticist Michael Bamshad of the Institute of Human Genetics, University of Utah, studied the genetic makeup of caste groups from Visakhapatnam district in Andhra Pradesh and compared them with various castes and regional groups of India as well as those in Africa, Asia and Europe. Then in his paper, he announced how the 'genetic distances' between castes correlated with social rank. The 'upper castes' were 'significantly more similar to Europeans' than the 'lower castes', he concluded.
        Exactly a century before Bamshad, there was Sir Herbert Risley, commissioner for the 1901 census of India and honorary director of the Ethnological Survey of the Indian Empire, who had applied the nasal index to the castes. He had ‘proved’ how Indian castes belonged to several racial categories – from dark skinned, snubbed nose Dravidians to fair skinned Aryans with pronounced proboscis.
        Doubts were raised from the Indian side, when Swami Vivekananda’s brother B N Dutta challenged Risley’s notion that ‘higher’ castes had European noses. He simply used more data than Risley.
        Later, in a detailed work on the origins of untouchability, Dr B R Ambedkar, the chief architect of the Constitution of India, questioned the methodology and conclusions of Western ethnography. Considering the colonial thesis that the so-called ‘untouchables’ belonged to a different race from the ‘caste Hindus’, Dr Ambedkar made a profound statement. Even if one were to consider ‘anthropometry as a science’ by which the race of a person could be established, he said, the data obtained "disprove that scheduled communities belonged to a race different from the rest of Hindu communities. The measurements prove that the Brahmin and the Untouchables belong to the same race."
        So, did Bamshad in 2001, with Single Nucleotide Polymorphism in the place of nasal index, prove Risley’s colonial ethnographic project of 1901 right and Dr Ambedkar wrong?
        Interestingly, the story was immediately grabbed by popular science magazines as well as local media. Popular Tamil newspaper Dinamani wrote an article approvingly quoting Bamshad’s paper as ‘Aryan invasion/migration theory’ being finally proved by science.
        UK-based popular science magazine New Scientist presented the Bamshad paper with the sensational heading 'Written in blood'. It then quoted a pro-missionary scholar Robert Hardgrave as saying that there are 'some historical and archeological evidence' that the "Aryans came in, they intermarried with indigenous people and also absorbed many of them into their social system of ranking".
        The Times of India newspaper reported the study with the prominent heading in its international section: 'Upper caste Indian male more European, says study'.
        Was It Frontline Then – ‘Authoritative Answer’ Regarding ‘Aryan’ Migration?
        Frontline, the magazine from the Left-leaning The Hindu family of publications, in reporting the Bamshad paper announced sensationally: "New genetic evidence for the origins of castes indicates that the upper castes are more European than Asian. It took a potshot at 'strident nationalism' in the form of 'Hindutva' ideology, which rejects the premise that Aryans were outsiders." While conceding that the archeological evidence of marauding or migrating Aryans was wanting, the article declared "modern population genetics, based on analyses of the variations in the DNA in population sets, has tools" that could provide "a more authoritative answer". And that answer was that the Y-chromosomes of the 'upper caste' men had markers closer to Eastern Europeans than to the Asians.
        One lone media voice that questioned the study was India Today. Labelling the Bamshad study 'controversial', an article in the publication drew parallel with the pseudoscientific racial study of Risley a century ago. The magazine quoted the famous archeologist Dilip Chakravarti, questioning the terminology used by the papers. The article cautioned readers against taking the paper as the final say on the matter. Soon Bamshad study was followed by another study in 2004. A team of six scientists, including Richard Cordaux of Max Planck Institute for Evolutionary Anthropology, studying the origin of the 'Hindu caste system' concluded that 'paternal lineages of Indian caste groups are primarily descended from Indo-European speakers who migrated from central Asia 3,500 years ago'.
        Subsequent Studies Reject The ‘Authoritative Answer’
        In 2003, Dr Toomas Kivisild and 17 other scientists published a paper, which studied both tribal and 'caste' populations. The paper reported that the "Haplogroup R1a, previously associated with the putative Indo-Aryan invasion, was found at its highest frequency in Punjab but also at a relatively high frequency (26 per cent) in the Chenchu tribe". This suggested ‘that southern and western Asia might be the source of this haplogroup’.
        This study did not receive the media spotlight that Bamshad paper received. However, it did prove to be a turning point. Dr Gyaneshwer Chaubey, of Estonian Biocenter, who is an expert in the field of biological anthropology and evolutionary biology, says, "the paper is still true and that is the one which has enlightened me to move to population genetics from Drosophila genetics!" Dr Chaubey since then has been at the forefront of research work related to the peopling of South Asia and is co-author of almost all the important papers dealing with the subject.
        Then in 2006, a major genetic study of the Indian population was taken up by a team of 12 scientists. The study produced results that contradicted the 2001 study of Bamshad et al. However, it did not receive the media attention it deserved. The paper had concluded:
        The Y-chromosome data consistently suggest a largely south Asian origin for Indian caste communities and therefore argue against any major influx, from regions north and west of India, of people associated either with the development of agriculture or the spread of the Indo-Aryan language family.
        This was followed by yet another research paper published in the same year. Among the 15 scientists, who submitted this paper, are some legends in the field, including Partha Mazumder of Human Genetics Unit, Indian Statistical Institute, L Luca Cavalli-Sforza and Peter Underhill of Stanford University. The paper said:
        The ages of accumulated microsatellite variation in the majority of Indian haplogroups exceed 10,000-15,000 years, which attests to the antiquity of regional differentiation. Therefore, our data do not support models that invoke a pronounced recent genetic input from Central Asia to explain the observed genetic variation in South Asia. R1a1 and R2 haplogroups indicate demographic complexity that is inconsistent with a recent single history.
        In 2010, Peter Underhill along with Dr Lalji Singh of Centre for Cellular and Molecular Biology, Hyderabad and a team of 21 scientists published another paper, particularly dealing with R1a – specifically in relation to its geographic spread and its link with the spread of I-E languages. Here, the study was conducted by "analysing more than 11,000 DNA samples from across Eurasia, including more than 2,000 from haplogroup R1a to ascertain the phylogenetic information of the newly discovered R1a-related SNPs’. The paper made a decisive point:
        The diversity and frequency profiles of M458 suggest its origin during the early Holocene and a subsequent expansion likely related to a number of prehistoric cultural developments in the region. ... Importantly, the virtual absence of M458 chromosomes outside Europe speaks against substantial patrilineal gene flow from East Europe to Asia, including to India, at least since the mid-Holocene.
        Even with such an avalanche of academic refutation of Bamshad 2001 paper, it continues to enjoy media patronage. For example, in 2014, ‘Beyond Headlines’ a website that calls itself ‘a leading alternative news portal’ published an op-ed piece titled 'American Scientist Proves Brahmins are Foreigners' written by New Delhi-based Dr Babasaheb Ambedkar Research Centre director Professor Vilas Kharat. Prof Kharat wrote that "Michael Bamshad has tremendously indebted the entire native Indians by publishing this report at an international level". According to him, the report "proclaims that, the higher castes (ie the Brahmins, Kshatriyas and Vaishyas) are not the original residents of India but they are the foreigners". BAMCEF (All India Backward and Minority Communities Employees Federation) launched by the founder-supremo of Bahujan Samaj Party (BSP) is taking Bamshad's report to the people and doing this propaganda, he claimed.
        It has been an interesting coincidence that the 2001 Bamshad paper had appeared almost at the same time, when the then National Democratic Alliance government was battling attempts to equate caste with race in the ‘World Conference Against Racism, Racial Discrimination, Xenophobia and Related Tolerance’ (WCAR) organised by United Nations in Durban. The conference was to be held from 31 August to 2 September 2001. As certain globally connected non-governmental organisations (NGOs) pushed the agenda to include caste-based issues as a form of racism at the Durban conference, heated arguments erupted in the National Committee on World Conference Against Racism (NCWCR). Dr Andre Beteille, the well-known social anthropologist had resigned protesting equating caste with race in June. And the same month, of course as a coincidence, Bamshad paper appeared on the scene. Dr Beteille was also critical of Bamshad paper.
        Aryan Migrants Versus Indigenous Aryans?
        One of the consistent straw man argument in many of the polemical pieces supporting Aryan migration is that the ‘Hindu nationalists’ claim Aryans to be indigenous. This is a straw man argument. Leaving aside fringe groups, the organisation of historians affiliated to the Rashtriya Swayamsevak Sangh, the main Hindutva organisation, does not claim Aryans to be ‘indigenous’. On the other hand, it rejects the race concept itself and claims that there is no such race called Aryans at all. So any critique of ‘Aryan’ invasion/migration is not to claim that Aryans are indigenous and genetically pure. While accepting that there has been gene flow into and out of Indian land mass, the contention is only that there was no such event as an ‘Aryan’ invasion or migration. In fact, one of the tallest ideologues of Hindutva, V D Savarkar stated as early as in 1924 that all a human being can claim in terms of ‘purity’ is that the blood of all humanity runs through his veins and that the fundamental unity of human race from pole to pole is the only reality.
        The Real Spin
        So, when The Hindu reported in 2017, the paper of Prof Martin B Richards which claimed evidence of "genetic influx from Central Asia in the Bronze Age" which was "strongly male-driven, consistent with the patriarchal, patrilocal and patrilineal social structure attributed to the inferred pastoralist early Indo-European society', it is to be expected that the report would be filled with the usual 'clinching evidence' cliché. And the writer Tony Joseph definitely does not disappoint us with his sensationalist heading 'How genetics is settling the Aryan migration debate'. Deja vu 2001!
        Unfortunately, though the euphoria was destined to be short-lived as it has become clear that the writer has concealed data and has been economical with truth as revealed by the article of Anil Suri. It will also become clear now that Joseph has been less than honest in even dealing with the papers he quoted in favour of ‘Aryan migration’ scenario and media reports he assailed.
        Spin 2009?
        In his article, Joseph takes to task some media reports of the 2009 study by Dr Lalji Singh et al. Written under the subheading ‘Spin and the Facts’ here is his criticism at length:
        Aryan-Dravidian divide a myth: Study,” screamed a newspaper headline on September 25, 2009. The article quoted Dr Lalji Singh, a co-author of the study and a former director of the Centre for Cellular and Molecular Biology, Hyderabad, as saying: “This paper rewrites history… there is no north-south divide”. The report also carried statements such as: “The initial settlement took place 65,000 years ago in the Andamans and in ancient south India around the same time, which led to population growth in this part. At a later stage, 40,000 years ago, the ancient north Indians emerged which in turn led to rise in numbers there. But at some point in time, the ancient north and the ancient south mixed, giving birth to a different set of population. And that is the population which exists now and there is a genetic relationship between the populations within India.
        The study, however, makes no such statements whatsoever – in fact, even the figures 65,000 and 40,000 do not figure it in it!
        Schematic diagram showing the process of formation of the present-day Indian populations.
        Schematic diagram showing the process of formation of the present-day Indian populations.
        The media report, he talks about, is from The Times of India, (25 September 2009) a competitor to the newspaper he was working for. A conflict of interest at work here? However, what Joseph did not do or if he did, what he had concealed from his readers is talking to the reporter for the source of the numbers 65,000 BP for ancestral south Indians (ASI) and 40,000 BP for ancestral north Indians (ANI). In fact, the report in The Times of India also quotes Dr Kumaraswamy Thangaraj of Centre for Cellular and Molecular Biology (CCMB), Hyderabad as saying the above factoids does not say it is from the paper.
        In 2009, I had independently contacted Dr Thangaraj. In his communication with me, he stated the following, which I present here in his own words:
        • Our paper basically discards Aryan theory. What we have discussed in our paper are pre-historic events.
        • Data included in this study is not sufficient to estimate the time of ANI settlement. However, our earlier studies using mtDNA and Y chromosome markers, suggest that the ANI are 40,000 years old. We predicted that the ASI are part of Andamanese migration, therefore they could be about 60,000 years old.
        So, clearly Tony Joseph has allowed his bias towards the migration theory get the better of his journalistic standards. Even here, he does not seem to have done his homework properly or decided not to deal with certain facts.
        In 2012, Dr Lalji Singh, two other scientists of CCMB (Rakesh Tamang and Kumaraswamy Thangaraj) had published a paper. The paper explicitly made the following statements, along with the info-graphics showing ANI entering India 40,000 years BP and ASI entering India 65,000 BP:
        Interestingly, both the ANI and ASI ancestry components of the Indian populations are found to harbour higher haplotypic diversity than those predominant in west Eurasia. The shared genetic affinity between the ANI component of northern India and west Eurasia was dated prior to the Aryan invasion (Metspalu et al. 2011). These realities suggest the rejection of the Aryan invasion hypothesis but support an ancient demographic history of India.
        So there is no spin involved in the 2009 TOI report. The only spin regarding that 2009 report is the negative one spun by Joseph, with wrong presumptions and concealed data.
        And The Real Spin
        Now let us come to the real spin Joseph engages in. Stanford University School of Medicine's Department of Genetics scientist Peter Underhill's 2015 paper contains an interesting caution "against ascribing findings from a contemporary phylogenetic cluster of a single genetic locus to a particular pre-historic demographic event, population migration, or cultural transformation". And more importantly he finds in "the geographic distribution of R1a-M780 a reflection of early urbanization within the Indus Valley".
        In his email communication, Dr Underhill cautioned against jumping to conclusions with quite a few caveats:
        It is important to realize that haplogroup R1a1 is just one piece of genetic information that informs the conversation about the peopling of Eurasian as well as Indian. It is also important to keep in mind that the Y chromosome locus is sensitive to founder effect and high frequencies may over-emphasize the magnitude of the impulse relative to other genetic data. For example while the Y chromosome might indicate a large degree of replacement of other Y chromosomes in a region, while other genetic data may indicate that the degree of replacement and mixing was not as great as reflected by Y chromosome data alone.
        Then, he pointed out:
        The place of origin of the M417 branch & Z93 & Z282 branches as well as the Z780 branch is uncertain but the diversification and distribution of M780 sub-lineages in consistent with an approximate 5,000 years ago time horizon. As city state populations began to rise relatively recently (post-New Stone Age ie Neolithic) the frequency distribution of M780 is consistent with this population growth as well as a culture involving metallurgy and probably Indo-European speakers as well as displacement of earlier peoples. While locally at considerable frequencies, the overall distribution of various R1a lineages is a minority fraction (ca. 10%) in the Indian population overall.
        So, let us summarise:
        • The place of origin of Z93 as well as Z780 branches have not been yet resolved.
        • The distribution of the branch itself happened approximately 5,000 years ago which is when the city-states’ population and culture involving metallurgy were expanding. And even the probable ‘replacement’ was not completely true in Indian context as ‘the overall distribution of various R1a lineages is a minority fraction’.
        Both the 2015 paper and Dr Underhill’s communication speak respectively about ‘the early urbanisation within the Indus Valley‘ and the rise of city-states as well as their population growth, associated with the spread of R1a lineages. So from the above, what can we conclude? The early demographic changes in the area had a lot of region specific dynamics, which include the distribution of M780 in the region. Given the 'minority fraction' presence of R1a in Indian population, the 'replacement of earlier people' cannot be applied at least to Indian/Indus Valley scenario. Dr. Chaubey affirms the above conclusion, ‘without any doubt’. According to him, ‘M780 is a marker that originated in India’ and ‘phylogentically it is not nested in any other R1a branch present in the world’. In other words, he concludes, ‘M780 doesn't show Central Asian or Middle Eastern or European variants as ancestral to it’.
        Interestingly, Joseph had contacted Dr Chaubey and after getting his inputs decided to edit them out completely and does not even mention him once.
        Joseph, citing the 2016 study, ‘Punctuated bursts in human male demography inferred from 1,244 worldwide Y-chromosome sequences’ says something curious, which deserves to be quoted at some length:
        This paper, which looked at major expansions of Y-DNA haplogroups within five continental populations, was lead-authored by David Poznikof the Stanford University, with Dr Underhill as one of the 42 co-authors. The study found “the most striking expansions within Z93 occurring approximately 4,000 to 4,500 years ago”. This is remarkable, because roughly 4,000 years ago is when the Indus Valley civilization began falling apart. (Emphasis not in the original)
        However, the study itself says something very different:
        Potential correspondence between genetics and archeology in South and East Asia have received less investigation. In South Asia, we detect eight lineage expansions dating to 4.0-7.3 kya and involving haplogroups H1-M52, L-M11 and R1a-Z95. The most striking are expansions within R1a-Z93, 4.0-4.5 kya. This time predates by a few centuries the collapse of the Indus Valley Civilization associated by some with the historical migration of Indo-European speakers from the western steppes into Indian sub-continent. (Emphasis not in the original)
        Interestingly, this paper is present behind a paywall and hence the original lines with which Joseph has done almost a Lysenko-like editing, may not be seen by a casual Google search. Actually, the period of expansion within R1a-Z93, 4,000-4,500 BP, matches not with decline but with the mature phase of Harappan Civilisation (2500-1900 BCE). So if at all we correlate R1a-Z93 with ‘Aryans’ then they were more likely to be contributors perhaps catalysing the urban expansion of Indus cities rather than its destroyers. What is here even more interesting is that along with R1a-Z93, established indigenous Indian lineages for example, H1-M52 and L-51 also showed the same expansion time, Dr Chaubey points out.
        Jathi System Brought By Aryan/I-E Speakers?
        Joseph then weaves a grand picture of the waves of migrants. Interestingly, the migrants of Bronze Age, created Indus Valley Civilisation and migrants, who came next brought agriculture. And then “those who came with a language called Sanskrit and its associated beliefs and practices and reshaped our society in fundamental ways”. In fact when discussing the stopping of the admixture of communities and emergence of endogamy, he gives a racial interpretation and calls it ‘shifting attitudes towards mixing of the races in ancient texts’. So essentially the ‘Aryans’ brought with them Sanskrit, associated beliefs, rituals, a patriarchal social structure and ‘reshaped our society in fundamental ways’. That is very euphemistically saying that ‘Aryans’ brought in caste system and fitted themselves at the top of the pyramid.
        Even pro-migration Dravidian ologist Iravatham Mahadevan has interpreted ideograms in Harappan script as representing occupational groups like 'functionary with priestly duty', 'functionary with military duty', 'Farmer, tiller, tenant' and 'servant'. The parallel with varna system is indeed hard to miss.
        More interesting is the observation of archeologist Jonathan Mark Kenoyer. He says:
        Although repeatedly challenged by reformers and benevolent leaders, the literate Brahminical elites were able to dominate ritual ideology and in many cases socio-economic organization through their ability to control knowledge. In the context of the Indus state, the limited distribution of written materials and their use by elites suggest that this pattern of control may have started as early as the first urbanism in Indus cities.
        Leaving aside the socio-political views of Kenoyer on the ‘Brahminical’ system, the empirical data points out that the social stratification that we see in India today can be seen as having a continuity with Indus Valley Civilisation and was not imposed by a marauding or migrating band of ‘Aryans’ from Central Asia.
        Why The Persistent Bias?
        Some years ago, while studying the population genetics papers related to the so-called Aryan invasion/migration theories, I sent an email regarding certain issues to Dr Nicole Boivin, then with the Leverhulme Centre for Human Evolutionary Studies, Cambridge, (and joined Max Planck Institute for the Science of Human History as director of the Department of Archaeology in July 2016), she advised me: "Do take all the genetics research with a giant grain of salt". She had also explained in great detail the reason in her paper, 'Anthropological, historical, archaeological and genetic perspectives on the origins of caste in South Asia':
        Part of the reason that many geneticists prove Indo-Aryan invasions so frequently is that they give little if any consideration to other populations that have or may have entered South Asia in prehistoric and historic times. Another problematic assumption that therefore needs to be highlighted is that in much of the genetics literature, the only (or only significant) possible post-Holocene source of nonindigenous genetic material is Indo-Aryans.
        Dr Boivin’s critical observation becomes significant here because it is interesting again to see that while eminent Indian geneticists like Dr Lalji Singh or Dr Partha Majumder have been able to see the problem through a complex, multi-dimensional scenario, a section of geneticists from Bamshad to Martin Richards seem to make one hypothetical event pivotal to entire demographic evolution of Indian population. A comparison of the following conclusion of Dr Partha Majumder et al in their May 2017 paper to the shrill conclusion of Martin P Richards about "strongly male-driven, consistent with the patriarchal, patrilocal and patrilineal social structure attributed to the inferred pastoralist early Indo-European society"will reveal the contrast. Dr Majumder et al conclude:
        A closest neighbour analysis in the phylogeny showed that Indian populations have an affinity towards Southern European populations and that the time of divergence from these populations substantially predated the Indo-European migration into India, probably reflecting ancient shared ancestry rather than the Indo-European migration, which had little effect on Indian male lineages. ... This analysis suggests that Indian populations have complex ancestry which cannot be explained by a single expansion model.
        If one can feel the difference in spirit and approach to the problems between these two groups of scientists, not in a crude caricatured way but as a subtle difference emerging from their respective epistemologies perhaps, then we might have also understood, yet another subtle though fundamental difference between the two approaches and also two visions of the ancient past of India.
        PostscriptI thank Dr Peter Underhill, Stanford University; Dr Gyaneshwer Chaubey, Estonian Biocentre, Estonia; Dr Thangaraj Kumaraswamy of Cellular CSIR - Centre for Cellular & Molecular Biology, India; Dr Nicole Boivin, Max Planck Institute for the Science of Human History, Germany, for taking their time and answering my questions, in 2009 and in 2017. They not only responded but also sent me materials so that I can understand the problem better. I thank Dr Lakshmi Chitoor Subramaniam, Mumbai, for taking the time to go through the draft and correct it.
        This article, along with all its references can be read here on Scribd.

        Aravindan is a contributing editor at Swarajya.

        0 0

        An Expanded View of Complex Traits: From Polygenic to Omnigenic
        Evan A. Boyle,1,Yang I. Li,1,and Jonathan K. Pritchard1,2,3,1Department of Genetics
        2Department of Biology 3Howard Hughes Medical Institute, Stanford University, Stanford, CA 94305, USA

        A central goal of genetics is to understand the links between genetic variation and disease. Intuitively, one might expect disease-causing variants to cluster into key pathways that drive disease etiology. But for complex traits, association signals tend to be spread across most of the genome—including near many genes without an obvious connection to disease. We propose that gene regulatory networks are sufficiently interconnected such that all genes expressed in disease-relevant cells are liable to affect the functions of core disease-related genes and that most heritability can be explained by effects on genes outside core pathways. We refer to this hypothesis as an ‘‘omnigenic’’ model.

        Evolutionary Change of Complex Traits
        The observation that many traits are affected by huge numbers of variants also has important implications for studies of evolutionary change. Within the evolutionary community, there has been great interest in identifying particular genetic variants that are responsible for adaptive changes, both within and between species (Vitti et al., 2013). While this work has produced a number of interesting examples, we argue that these are not likely to be representative of most evolutionary change. Instead, most adaptive changes may proceed by polygenic adaptation, i.e., species adapt by small allele frequency shifts of many causal variants across the genome (Pritchard et al., 2010).

         For example, if 10variants affect height by 0.15 mm each, then even a small shift in average allele frequencies could generate a large shift in average height; e.g., a 0.5% genome-wide increase in the frequency of ‘‘tall’’ alleles would generate a 15 cm shift in average height. There is now a growing collection of examples of recent polygenic adaptation in humans, especially for morphometric traits including height, BMI, and infant birth size (Turchin et al., 2012; Field et al., 2016).
        We anticipate that many of the more dramatic phenotypic differences seen between species are also driven by an accumulation of tiny effects and that larger-effect differences are likely to be exceptions to the rule. For example, there are [about] 40 million single-nucleotide [SNP] differences between humans and chimpanzees. If 1% of these affect chromatin function or other aspects of regulation, then there could easily be a half-million differences between the two species with small but nonzero effects on phenotypes (these need not all be adaptive), and these would likely dominate the contributions of a handful of large-effect loci. 

        From the Science Hub (which reproduces the behind-pay-wall paper -- Abstract cited above) .

        An Expanded View of Complex Traits: From Polygenic to Omnigenic Evan A. Boyle,1,* Yang I. Li,1,* and Jonathan K. Pritchard1,2,3,* 1Department of Genetics 2Department of Biology 3Howard Hughes Medical Institute Stanford University, Stanford, CA 94305, USA *Correspondence: (E.A.B.), (Y.I.L.), (J.K.P.) A central goal of genetics is to understand the links between genetic variation and disease. Intuitively, one might expect disease-causing variants to cluster into key pathways that drive disease etiology. But for complex traits, association signals tend to be spread across most of the genome—including near many genes without an obvious connection to disease. We propose that gene regulatory networks are sufficiently interconnected such that all genes expressed in disease-relevant cells are liable to affect the functions of core disease-related genes and that most heritability can be explained by effects on genes outside core pathways. We refer to this hypothesis as an ‘‘omnigenic’’ model. The longest-standing question in genetics is to understand how genetic variation contributes to phenotypic variation. In the early 1900s, there was fierce debate between the Mendelians—who were inspired by Mendel’s work on pea genetics and focused on discrete, monogenic phenotypes—and the biometricians, who were interested in the inheritance of continuous traits such as height. The biometricians believed that Mendelian genetics could not explain the continuous distribution of variation observed for many traits in humans and other species. This debate was resolved in a seminal 1918 paper by R.A. Fisher, who showed that, if many genes affect a trait, then the random sampling of alleles at each gene produces a continuous, normally distributed phenotype in the population (Fisher, 1918). As the number of genes grows very large, the contribution of each gene becomes correspondingly smaller, leading in the limit to Fisher’s famous ‘‘infinitesimal model’’ (Barton et al., 2016). Despite the success of the infinitesimal model in describing inheritance patterns, especially in plant and animal breeding, it was unclear throughout the 20th century how many genes would actually be important for driving complex traits. Indeed, human geneticists expected that even complex traits would be driven by a handful of moderate-effect loci—thus giving rise to large numbers of mapping studies that were, in retrospect, greatly underpowered. For example, an elegant 1999 analysis of allele sharing in autistic siblings concluded from the lack of significant hits that there must be ‘‘a large number of loci (perhaps R15).’’ This prediction was strikingly high at the time but seems quaintly low now (Risch et al., 1999; Weiner et al., 2016). Since around 2006, the advent of genome-wide association studies, and more recently exome sequencing, has provided the first detailed understanding of the genetic basis of complex traits. One of the early surprises of the GWAS era was that, for typical traits, even the most important loci in the genome have small effect sizes and that, together, the significant hits only explain a modest fraction of the predicted genetic variance. This has been referred to as the mystery of the ‘‘missing heritability’’ (Manolio et al., 2009). The mystery has since been largely resolved by analyses showing that common single-nucleotide polymorphisms (SNPs) with effect sizes well below genomewide statistical significance account for most of the ‘‘missing heritability’’ of many traits (Yang et al., 2010; Shi et al., 2016). Rare variants with larger effect sizes also contribute genetic variance (Marouli et al., 2017), especially for diseases with major fitness consequences (Simons et al., 2014) such as autism and schizophrenia (De Rubeis et al., 2014; Fromer et al., 2014; Purcell et al., 2014). A second surprise was that, in contrast to Mendelian diseases—which are largely caused by protein-coding changes (Botstein and Risch, 2003)—complex traits are mainly driven by noncoding variants that presumably affect gene regulation (Pickrell, 2014; Welter et al., 2014; Li et al., 2016). Indeed, many studies have shown that significant variants are highly enriched in regions of active chromatin such as promoters and enhancers in relevant cell types. For example, risk variants for autoimmune diseases show particular enrichment in active chromatin regions of immune cells (Maurano et al.; 2012; Farh et al., 2015; Kundaje et al., 2015). These observations are generally interpreted in a paradigm in which complex disease is driven by an accumulation of weak effects on the key genes and regulatory pathways that drive disease risk (Furlong, 2013; Chakravarti and Turner, 2016). This model has motivated many studies that aim to dissect the functional impacts of individual disease-associated variants (Smemo et al., 2014; Sekar et al., 2016) or to aggregate hits to identify key disease pathways and processes (Califano et al., 2012; Jostins et al., 2012; Wood et al., 2014; Krumm et al., Cell 169, June 15, 2017 ª 2017 Elsevier Inc. 1177 2015). For several diseases, the leading hits have indeed helped to highlight specific molecular processes—for example, uncovering the role of autophagy in Crohn’s disease (Jostins et al., 2012), and roles for adipocyte thermogenesis (Claussnitzer et al., 2015) and central nervous system genes in obesity (Locke et al., 2015). But despite the success of these earlier studies, we argue that the enrichment of signal in relevant genes is surprisingly weak overall, suggesting that prevailing conceptual models for complex diseases are incomplete. We highlight some pertinent features of current data and discuss what these may tell us about the genetic architecture of complex diseases. Distribution of GWAS Signals across the Genome Early practitioners of GWAS were dismayed to find that, for most traits, the strongest genetic associations could explain only a small fraction of the genetic variance (Manolio et al., 2009). This was taken to imply that there must be many causal loci, each with small effect sizes (Goldstein, 2009). Subsequent analyses soon provided direct evidence for this in the case of schizophrenia (Purcell et al., 2009) and showed that, together, common variants can explain much of the expected heritability (Yang et al., 2010). While traits vary greatly in terms of both the importance of the largest-effect common variants and of higher-penetrance rare variants (Loh et al., 2015; Shi et al., 2016; Sullivan et al., 2017), it is now clear that polygenic effects are important across a wide variety of traits (Shi et al., 2016; Weiner et al., 2016). One key question that has been under-studied to date is the extent to which causal variants are spread widely across the genome or clumped into disease-relevant pathways. However, it is known that the heritability contributed by each chromosome tends to be closely proportional to its physical length (Visscher et al., 2006; Shi et al., 2016), hinting that causal variants may be fairly uniformly distributed. And recent data show that causal variants can be surprisingly dispersed even at finer scales. A paper from Alkes Price and colleagues estimated that 71%–100% of 1-MB windows in the genome contribute to heritability for schizophrenia (Loh et al., 2015). Here we explore a second example—namely, height—for which very large GWAS datasets are available (Figure 1). While height is often thought of as the quintessential polygenic trait, recent work shows that the genetic architecture of height is actually broadly similar to that of a wide variety of other quantitative traits and diseases ranging from diabetes or autoimmune diseases to BMI or cholesterol levels. Thus, we use height to illustrate the extreme polygenicity typical of many complex traits (Shi et al., 2016; Chakravarti and Turner, 2016). A height meta-analysis from the GIANT study reported 697 genome-wide significant loci that, together, explain 16% of the phenotypic variance (Wood et al., 2014). But a quantilequantile plot comparing the distribution of p values against the expected null distribution shows that the distribution of p values is hugely shifted toward small p values (Figure 1A), such that common variants together explain 86% of the expected heritability (Shi et al., 2016). The inflation is stronger in active chromatin and in expression quantitative trait loci (eQTLs), consistent with the expected enrichment of signal in gene-regulatory regions. We next used ashR to analyze the distribution of regression coefficients from the set of all SNPs (Stephens, 2017). ashR models the GWAS results as a mixture of SNPs that have a Figure 1. Genome-wide Signals of Association with Height (A) Genome-wide inflation of small p values from the GWAS for height, with particular enrichment among expression quantitative trait loci and single-nucleotide polymorphisms (SNPs) in active chromatin (H3K27ac). (B) Estimated fraction of SNPs associated with non-zero effects on height (Stephens, 2017) as a function of linkage disequilibrium score (i.e., the effective number of SNPs tagged by each SNP; Bulik-Sullivan et al., 2015b). Each dot represents a bin of 1% of all SNPs, sorted by LD score. Overall, we estimate that 62% of all SNPs are associated with a non-zero effect on height. The best-fit line estimates that 3.8% of SNPs have causal effects. (C) Estimated mean effect size for SNPs, sorted by GIANT p value with the direction (sign) of effect ascertained by GIANT. Replication effect sizes were estimated using data from the Health and Retirement Study (HRS). The points show averages of 1,000 consecutive SNPS in the p-value-sorted list. The effect size on the median SNP in the genome is about 10% of that for genome-wide significant hits. 1178 Cell 169, June 15, 2017 true effect size of exactly zero, with SNPs that have a true effect size that is not zero. Using this approach, we estimated that, remarkably, 62% of all common SNPs are associated with a non-zero effect on height (this includes both causal SNPs as well as nearby SNPs that are correlated through linkage disequilibrium; Figure 1B). Given that the typical extent of linkage disequilibrium (LD) is around 10–100 kb (International HapMap Consortium, 2005), this implies that most 100-kb windows in the genome include variants that affect height. Stratifying the ashR analysis by the LD score for each SNP (Bulik-Sullivan et al., 2015b), we see a clear effect that SNPs with more LD partners are more likely to be associated with height. Under simplifying assumptions (see Supplemental Information), the best-fit curve suggests that 3.8% of 1000 Genomes SNPs have causal effects on height. As validation, we used the regression estimate from each SNP in the height meta-analysis to predict its direction of effect on height (Figure 1C) and then examined the extent to which SNP effects are consistent in a smaller, independent dataset from the Health and Retirement Study (Juster and Suzman, 1995). In brief, we computed the mean replication effect sizes of height-increasing alleles as determined by GIANT. Under the null hypothesis of no true signal, the replication effect sizes would be centered on zero; when there is true signal, the observed mean effect sizes can be considered a lower bound on the true effect sizes due to occasional sign errors in GIANT. Strikingly, we find clear enrichment of shared directional signal for most SNPs, even for SNPs with p values as large as 0.5 (Figure 1C). Across all SNPs genome-wide, the median SNP is associated with an effect size of 0.14 mm, which is approximately one-tenth the median effect size of genomewide significant SNPs (1.43 mm). We also obtained similar results starting from a smaller family-based GWAS, confirming that the signals are not driven by confounding from population structure (Supplemental Information). Putting the various lines of evidence together, we estimate that more than 100,000 SNPs exert independent causal effects on height, similar to an early estimate of 93,000 causal variants based on a different approach (Goldstein, 2009) (Supplemental Information). In summary, we conclude that there is an extremely large number of causal variants with tiny effect sizes on height and, moreover, that these are spread very widely across the genome, such that most 100-kb windows contribute to variance in height. More generally, the heritability of complex traits and diseases is spread broadly across the genome (Loh et al., 2015; Shi et al., 2016), implying that a substantial fraction of all genes contribute to variation in disease risk. These observations seem inconsistent with the expectation that complex trait variants are primarily in specific biologically relevant genes and pathways. To explore this further, we turn next to data on functional enrichment of signals. Enrichment of Genetic Signals in Transcriptionally Active Regions As shown above for height, GWAS signals tend to be markedly enriched in predicted gene regulatory elements. In particular, many groups have shown that disease-associated SNPs are enriched in active chromatin and particularly in chromatin that is active in cell types relevant to disease (Trynka et al., 2013; Farh et al., 2015; Finucane et al., 2015; Kundaje et al., 2015). Similarly, signals also aggregate near genes that are expressed in relevant cell types (Hu et al., 2011; Wood et al., 2014). An intuitive interpretation is that the cell-type-based regulatory maps point us toward cell-type-specific regulatory elements that control specific functions of those cells and thereby drive disease biology. Indeed, the relevant papers often describe these analyses as highlighting ‘‘cell-type-specific’’ aspects of regulation. But given that the heritability signal is so widespread, we wanted to understand whether the signal is specifically concentrated in chromatin that is active in just the relevant (or related) cell types, as opposed to chromatin that is broadly active. To explore this question, we used active chromatin data measured in ten broadly defined cell-type groups (e.g., immune, central nervous system (CNS), cardiovascular, etc.). A region was considered active in a cell-type group if it was detected as active for any cell type in that group. We applied stratified LD score regression—a method that estimates how much different classes of SNPs contribute to heritability (Finucane et al., 2015). We focused on three well-powered GWAS studies that showed clear enrichment within a single cell-type group in a previous analysis: Crohn’s disease (immune), rheumatoid arthritis (RA, immune), and schizophrenia (CNS) (Finucane et al., 2015). While there are strong cell-type effects, these are largely independent of the breadth of chromatin activity. For example, we observed that SNPs in chromatin that is broadly active across most cell types make substantial contributions to heritability. On average, SNPs in broadly active elements contribute roughly as much to heritability as do SNPs in cell-type-specific active chromatin (only for RA are these significantly different; Figure 2A). Meanwhile, SNPs in chromatin that is inactive or is active only in irrelevant cell types contribute little or no heritability, thus providing an important negative control. For an alternative viewpoint, we also considered breadth of gene expression. We estimated the contribution of SNPs in or near exons for genes with different expression profiles. Based on GTEx data, we identified genes that are particularly highly expressed in particular tissue groups, as well as broadly expressed genes (GTEx Consortium, 2015). As shown for schizophrenia (Figure 2B), SNPs near genes that are expressed in the brain contribute substantially to heritability, while genes that are specifically expressed in other tissues contribute little or nothing. Perhaps intuitively, SNPs near genes expressed specifically in brain contribute more heritability per SNP than SNPs near genes with broad expression profiles. However, only a modest fraction of all brain-expressed genes are specifically upregulated in brain. Hence, broadly expressed genes actually contribute more to the overall heritability than do brain-specific genes. In summary, genetic contribution to disease is heavily concentrated in regions that are transcribed or marked by active chromatin in relevant tissues, but there is little enrichment for Cell 169, June 15, 2017 1179 cell-type-specific regulatory elements versus broadly actively regions. As expected, there appears to be little or no genetic contribution from regions that are inactive in these tissues. To investigate the question of GWAS specificity further, we next examined evidence for enrichment of associated genes in specific functional categories. Weak Enrichment of Genetic Signals by Functional Categories We considered the contributions of genes from different functional ontologies. As expected, we found that the genetic signals for the two autoimmune diseases (Crohn’s and RA) were most enriched in ontologies corresponding to ‘‘immune response’’ and ‘‘inflammatory response,’’ whereas schizophrenia heritability was most enriched in nervous-systemrelated genes with ontologies such as ‘‘ion channel activity’’ Figure 2. Heritability Tends to Be Enriched in Regions that Are Transcriptionally Active in Relevant Tissues (A) Contributions to heritability (relative to random SNPs) as a function of chromatin context. There is enrichment for signal among SNPs that are in chromatin active in the relevant tissue, regardless of the overall tissue breadth of activity. (B) Genes with brain-specific expression show the strongest enrichment of schizophrenia signal (left), but broadly expressed genes contribute more to total heritability due to their greater number (right). and ‘‘calcium ion transport’’ (Figure 3). However, these enrichments were relatively modest, and for all three diseases, we observed a strong linear relationship between the sizes of the functional categories and the proportion of heritability that they contributed. Broad functional categories contribute more total trait heritability than do genes in apparently disease-relevant functional categories, and for all three diseases, the largest contributor to heritability was simply the largest category, namely protein binding. Moreover, these results are markedly different from analysis of rare variants implicated in schizophrenia. Recent studies of rare variants have consistently found enrichment of synaptic genes and other gene sets involved in neuronal functions within de novo, rare, and CNV polymorphism sets (Table 1). In contrast, analysis of the 108 genome-wide significant loci from GWAS found examples of hits in relevant genes but no ontology categories that were significant overall (Ripke et al., 2014), consistent with the weak enrichment described above for the heritability analysis of the same data. Together, these results suggest that the types of genes detected in rare variant studies—which can detect highly deleterious variants with large effect sizes—play more direct roles in schizophrenia than do genes identified from GWAS based on common variants. An Extended Model for Complex Traits In summary, for a variety of traits, the largest-effect variants are modestly enriched in specific genes or pathways that may play direct roles in disease. However, the SNPs that contribute the bulk of the heritability tend to be spread across the genome and are not near genes with disease-specific functions. The clearest pattern is that the association signal is broadly enriched in regions that are transcriptionally active or involved in transcriptional regulation in disease-relevant cell types but absent from regions that are transcriptionally inactive in those cell types. For typical traits, huge numbers of variants contribute to 1180 Cell 169, June 15, 2017 heritability, in striking consistency with Fisher’s century-old infinitesimal model. To make sense of these observations, we propose an ‘‘omnigenic’’ model of complex traits (Figure 4). First, we assume that most traits can be directly affected by a modest number of genes or gene pathways with specific roles in disease etiology, as well as their direct regulators (Chakravarti and Turner, 2016). We refer to these as ‘‘core genes.’’ Such genes will tend to have biologically interpretable roles in disease, such as the roles of IRX3 and IRX5 in controlling adipocyte differentiation, with consequent effects on obesity (Claussnitzer et al., 2015), or the role of the C4 genes on synaptic pruning in development, thereby affecting schizophrenia risk (Sekar et al., 2016). Furthermore, when core genes are damaged by loss of function or other particularly damaging mutations, we can anticipate that these will tend to have the strongest effects on disease risk (although the actual degree of increased risk conferred by the largest effect-size mutations varies greatly across traits; Krumm et al., 2015; Marouli et al., 2017). In practice, the sorting of core genes from peripheral genes may be on a graduated scale, as opposed to a binary classification. Second, we need to understand why core genes generally contribute just a small part of the total heritability and how most genes expressed in relevant cell types could make nonzero contributions to heritability. To resolve this, we propose that cell regulatory networks are highly interconnected to the extent that any expressed gene is likely to affect the regulation or function of core genes. At this time, our understanding of cellular regulatory networks remains incomplete, but the relevant connections likely include all layers of interactions among cellular molecules, including transcriptional networks, post-translational modifications, protein-protein interactions, and intercellular signaling (Furlong, 2013). In particular cases, it has been possible to elucidate the most important wiring connections in gene regulatory networks that drive development or disease (Davidson, 2010; Chatterjee et al., 2016). However, we still have very limited knowledge of how weaker effects such as expression QTLs percolate through the entire regulatory network. Nonetheless, research in network theory finds that most real-world networks tend to be highly interconnected; this is referred to as the ‘‘small world’’ property of networks (Watts and Strogatz, 1998; Strogatz, 2001). Specifically, many kinds of networks have structures consisting of distinct modules of connected nodes but also frequent longrange connections. Under these conditions, any two nodes in the graph are usually connected by just a few steps. If this is the case in cellular networks, then any gene that is expressed in a disease-relevant tissue is likely to be just a few steps from one or more core genes. Consequently, any variant that affects expression of a ‘‘peripheral’’ gene is likely to have non-zero effects on regulation of the core genes and thereby incur a small effect on disease risk. Crucially, because the total set of expressed genes may outnumber core genes by 100:1 or more, the sum of small effects across peripheral genes can far exceed the genetic contribution of variants directly affecting the core genes themselves. Our model posits that information flows from regulatory variants, e.g., by affecting chromatin activity, to cis regulation of nearby genes and ultimately to affect the activity of other genes. cis-eQTLs (cis-acting expression quantitative trait loci) may in turn affect mRNA or protein levels of other unlinked genes via the regulatory network (i.e., the variants would also be trans-acting eQTLs for genes elsewhere in the genome) but might also affect other functions such as posttranslational modification or subcellular localization. At present, detection of trans-QTLs is challenging in current sample Figure 3. Gene Ontology Enrichments for Three Diseases, with Categories of Particular Interest Labeled The x axis indicates the fraction of SNPs in each category; the y axis shows the fraction of heritability assigned to each category as a fraction of the heritability assigned to all SNPs. Note that the diagonal indicates the genome-wide average across all SNPs; most GO categories lie above the line due to the general enrichment of signal in and around genes. Analysis by stratified LD score regression (Finucane et al., 2015). Cell 169, June 15, 2017 1181 sizes (Westra et al., 2013; Jo et al., 2016), but it is estimated that 70% of mRNA heritability is determined by trans-acting factors (Price et al., 2011). Moreover, many trans-QTLs may act through protein networks and thus may not be detectable from RNA, though current data on trans-acting controls of proteins are very limited (Battle et al., 2015; Chick et al., 2016; Sun et al., 2017). Lastly, many diseases are mediated through multiple cell types—for example, different immune cell subsets for autoimmune disease or even unrelated tissues such as brain and adipose tissue for obesity. Furthermore, although GWAS hits are highly enriched in active chromatin, only a modest fraction can currently be explained by known eQTLs (Chun et al., 2017). This gap may imply that many risk variants affect expression only in narrowly defined cell types or under precise conditions such as immune stimulation (Alasoo et al., 2017). When disease risk is mediated through multiple cell types or highly specialized cell types, we anticipate that the cellular networks would vary across cell types (Price et al., 2011; Sonawane et al., 2017). The quantitative effect of any given variant would then be an average of its effect size in each cell type, weighted by cell type importance. In summary, the omnigenic model of complex disease proposes that essentially any gene with regulatory variants in at least one tissue that contributes to disease pathogenesis is likely to have nontrivial effects on risk for that disease. Furthermore, the relative effect sizes are such that, since core genes are hugely outnumbered by peripheral genes, a large fraction of the total genetic contribution to disease comes from peripheral genes that do not play direct roles in disease. Widespread Pleiotropy There has recently been considerable interest in identifying particular variants with pleiotropic effects on different traits (Cotsapas et al., 2011; Pickrell et al., 2016) as well as in identifying pairs of traits with correlated genetic effects (Bulik-Sullivan et al., 2015a). However, the observation that genetic signals are spread broadly across the genome implies that pleiotropy may be ubiquitous (Visscher and Yang, 2016). Indeed, the omnigenic model predicts that virtually any variant with regulatory effects in a given tissue is likely to have (weak) effects on all diseases that are modulated through that tissue. Many eQTLs are active in all tissues, and consequently these may have weak effects on most or even all traits. We refer to this form of pleiotropy as ‘‘network pleiotropy,’’ i.e., the principle that a single variant may affect multiple traits because those traits are mediated through the same cell type(s) and hence regulated through the same network(s)—and not because the traits are directly causally related. Traits that share core genes or whose genes are close in the network will tend to have correlated effects. Conversely, traits that are mediated through the same tissue but have no overlap of core genes may show little or no correlation in effects even though many causal variants are shared. If network pleiotropy is widespread, this raises challenges for the interpretation of genetic correlations and for Mendelian Randomization studies (Bulik-Sullivan et al., 2015a; Davey Smith and Hemani, 2014). Mendelian Randomization generally assumes that pleiotropy between traits that are not causally related—also referred to as ‘‘type I pleiotropy’’ (Wagner and Zhang, 2011)—is rare. It remains to be determined whether the effects of network pleiotropy would be strong enough to drive significant signals in practice, especially if the core genes are far apart in the network. Evolutionary Change of Complex Traits The observation that many traits are affected by huge numbers of variants also has important implications for studies of evolutionary change. Within the evolutionary community, there has been great interest in identifying particular genetic variants that are responsible for adaptive changes, both within and between species (Vitti et al., 2013). While this work has produced a number of interesting examples, we argue that these are not likely to be representative of most evolutionary change. Instead, most adaptive changes may proceed by polygenic adaptation, i.e., species adapt by small allele frequency shifts of many causal variants across the genome (Pritchard et al., 2010). For example, if 105 variants affect height by 0.15 mm each, then even a small shift in average allele frequencies could generate a large shift in average height; e.g., a 0.5% genome-wide increase in the frequency of ‘‘tall’’ alleles would generate a 15 cm shift in average height. There is now a growing collection of examples of recent polygenic adaptation in humans, especially for morphometric Table 1. Summary of Gene Sets that Show Functional Enrichment in Recent Large-Scale Papers on Schizophrenia Variant Type Gene Set/Ontology Enrichment P Value Reference Rare ARC p = 1.6 3 103 Purcell et al. (2014) voltage-gated calcium channel p = 1.9 3 103 de novo ARC p = 4.8 3 104 Fromer et al. (2014) N-methyl-D-aspartate receptor (NMDAR) p = 2.5 3 102 CNV ARC p = 1.8 3 104 The Psychiatric Genetics Consortium (2016) Synaptic gene p = 2.8 3 1011 GWAS glutamatergic neurotransmission not significanta Ripke et al. (2014) synaptic plasticity Studies of rare and de novo variants and CNVs—which tend to identify larger-effect variants—show clearer evidence of enrichment than seen in GWAS. The p values are shown without multiple testing correction, but corrected p values are <0.05. a Consistent with studies of rare variants, Ripke et al. (2014) identified associated loci near several genes involved in glutamatergic neurotransmission and synaptic plasticity, but these categories did not show a statistically significant enrichment for GWAS hits. ARC: activity-regulated cytoskeletonassociated scaffold protein. 1182 Cell 169, June 15, 2017 traits including height, BMI, and infant birth size (Turchin et al., 2012; Field et al., 2016). We anticipate that many of the more dramatic phenotypic differences seen between species are also driven by an accumulation of tiny effects and that larger-effect differences are likely to be exceptions to the rule. For example, there are 40 million single-nucleotide differences between humans and chimpanzees. If 1% of these affect chromatin function or other aspects of regulation, then there could easily be a half-million differences between the two species with small but nonzero effects on phenotypes (these need not all be adaptive), and these would likely dominate the contributions of a handful of large-effect loci. Turning to the within-species level, one important open question is whether pleiotropic effects limit how many traits can be selected for at once. As described above, pleiotropy is likely ubiquitous in the genome. This may place constraints on the ability of selection to shift allele frequencies, as a change in the frequency of one variant must be balanced by changes at other sites. Does this effectively limit the number of independent polygenic traits that can be simultaneously selected? There has been previous consideration of the extent to which pleiotropy shapes Figure 4. An Omnigenic Model of Complex Traits (A) For any given disease phenotype, a limited number of genes have direct effects on disease risk. However, by the small world property of networks, most expressed genes are only a few steps from the nearest core gene and thus may have non-zero effects on disease. Since core genes only constitute a tiny fraction of all genes, most heritability comes from genes with indirect effects. (B) Diseases are generally associated with dysfunction of specific tissues; genetic variants are only relevant if they perturb gene expression (and hence network state) in those tissues. For traits that are mediated through multiple cell types or tissues, the overall effect size of any given SNP would be a weighted average of its effects in each cell type. variation and adaptation (Barton, 1990; Walsh and Blows, 2009), but we believe this area is ripe for further exploration in the light of modern data. Future Directions Huge numbers of genes contribute to the heritability for complex diseases. This fact raises fundamental questions about how genetic variation perturbs genetic systems to produce phenotypes. We have proposed one possible model, and it will be important to test this and perhaps others. There are deep challenges to fully understanding the impact of very small effects in organismal systems, so we believe there is great need to develop cell-based model systems that can recapitulate aspects of complex traits. Furthermore, we still have limited understanding of cellular networks, and it will be important to develop highly precise, high-throughput techniques for mapping networks in diverse cell types, especially at the protein level. We suggest the following key questions and tests of the omnigenic model: d For a variety of representative traits: How many distinct variants and how many genes contribute causal variation? What fraction of this variation is in non-core genes? Which traits are closer to (or further from) the omnigenic extreme? d Are there variants that affect expression in the cell types that drive a particular disease but have no effect on disease risk? While traits vary in terms of the importance of the largest-effect variants, the strongest form of the omnigenic model predicts that essentially all regulatory variants active in relevant cell types would contribute non-zero effects. d If most genetic variants act through cellular networks, then what mediates these connections? Transcriptional regulation, post-translational modification, proteinprotein interaction, and intercellular signaling may all contribute. What is the nature and frequency of long-range Cell 169, June 15, 2017 1183 interactions in cellular networks? How do network architectures vary across cell types and tissues? d As we get increasingly precise measurements of the percolation of genetic variation through cellular networks, can we infer the effects of peripheral genes from their relation to core genes? d Is the conceptual distinction between core genes and peripheral genes useful for understanding disease, and if so, how should core genes be defined? One possible formal definition is that, conditional on the genotype and expression levels of all core genes, the genotypes and expression levels of peripheral genes no longer matter. Less formally, we might think of core genes as the genes that (if mutated or deleted) have the strongest effects, as seen for large-effect mutations in autism (Krumm et al., 2015). Or we might think of core genes simply as the genes with interpretable mechanistic links to disease. Alternatively, some diseases may not even have core genes—instead, the global activity of all genes might help to set cellular system states that determine cellular function and disease risk (Preininger et al., 2013). Our model also raises questions about the next generation of mapping studies. One goal of gene mapping is to identify core genes and pathways that drive disease. These provide mechanistic insights into disease biology and may suggest druggable targets. The biggest hits from GWAS have helped to pinpoint important core genes. After these have been found, the next most promising step is to hunt for lower-frequency variants of larger effects, which likely contribute little to heritability but may implicate additional core genes. Deep sequencing has not been uniformly successful for all traits (possibly due to insufficient sample sizes; Marouli et al., 2017), but following the identification of the biggest association hits among common variants, large-scale sequencing is the most promising next step. In the short-term, exome sequencing is likely the most cost-effective approach, given current evidence that larger-effect variants are more likely to affect protein-coding sequences. Nonetheless, large-scale genotyping data will continue to be valuable for two reasons. First, very deep association data will be essential for developing personalized risk prediction. Second, these data will be essential for modeling the flow of regulatory information through cellular networks. For a complete understanding of disease genetics, we will want to know why increased expression of gene X increases risk for diseases Y and Z. For this, we will need to understand cellular networks much better and to have estimates of disease risk in very large samples. In summary, many complex traits are driven by enormously large numbers of variants of small effects, potentially implicating most regulatory variants that are active in disease-relevant tissues. To explain these observations, we propose that disease risk is largely driven by genes with no direct relevance to disease and is propagated through regulatory networks to a much smaller number of core genes with direct effects. If this model is correct, then it implies that detailed mapping of cell-specific regulatory networks will be an essential task for fully understanding human disease biology. 

        SUPPLEMENTAL INFORMATION Supplemental Information includes Materials and Methods, five figures, and one table and can be found with this article online at 1016/j.cell.2017.05.038. 

        ACKNOWLEDGMENTS This work was supported by RO1 HG008140, the National Science Foundation graduate research fellowship program, and the Howard Hughes Medical Institute. We thank many colleagues for helpful conversations or comments, including D. Golan, W. Greenleaf, A. Harpak, A. Marson, J. Pickrell, M. Przeworski, G. Sella, and three anonymous reviewers. 

        REFERENCES Alasoo, K., Rodrigues, J., Mukhopadhyay, S., Knights, A.J., Mann, A.L., Kundu, K., HIPSCI Consortium, Hale, C., Dougan, G., and Gaffney, D.J. (2017). Genetic effects on chromatin accessibility foreshadow gene expression changes in macrophage immune response. bioRxiv, 1101/102392. Barton, N.H. (1990). Pleiotropic models of quantitative variation. Genetics 124, 773–782. Barton, N.H., Etheridge, A.M., and Veber, A. (2016). The infinitesimal model. bioRxiv, Battle, A., Khan, Z., Wang, S.H., Mitrano, A., Ford, M.J., Pritchard, J.K., and Gilad, Y. (2015). Genomic variation. Impact of regulatory variation from RNA to protein. Science 347, 664–667. Botstein, D., and Risch, N. (2003). Discovering genotypes underlying human phenotypes: past successes for mendelian disease, future approaches for complex disease. Nat. Genet. 33 (Suppl ), 228–237. Bulik-Sullivan, B., Finucane, H.K., Anttila, V., Gusev, A., Day, F.R., Loh, P.-R., Duncan, L., Perry, J.R., Patterson, N., Robinson, E.B., et al.; ReproGen Consortium; Psychiatric Genomics Consortium; Genetic Consortium for Anorexia Nervosa of the Wellcome Trust Case Control Consortium 3 (2015a). An atlas of genetic correlations across human diseases and traits. Nat. Genet. 47, 1236–1241. Bulik-Sullivan, B.K., Loh, P.R., Finucane, H.K., Ripke, S., Yang, J., Patterson, N., Daly, M.J., Price, A.L., and Neale, B.M.; Schizophrenia Working Group of the Psychiatric Genomics Consortium (2015b). LD Score regression distinguishes confounding from polygenicity in genome-wide association studies. Nat. Genet. 47, 291–295. Califano, A., Butte, A.J., Friend, S., Ideker, T., and Schadt, E. (2012). Leveraging models of cell regulation and GWAS data in integrative networkbased association studies. Nat. Genet. 44, 841–847. Chakravarti, A., and Turner, T.N. (2016). Revealing rate-limiting steps in complex disease biology: The crucial importance of studying rare, extreme-phenotype families. BioEssays 38, 578–586. Chatterjee, S., Kapoor, A., Akiyama, J.A., Auer, D.R., Lee, D., Gabriel, S., Berrios, C., Pennacchio, L.A., and Chakravarti, A. (2016). Enhancer Variants Synergistically Drive Dysfunction of a Gene Regulatory Network In Hirschsprung Disease. Cell 167, 355–368.e10. Chick, J.M., Munger, S.C., Simecek, P., Huttlin, E.L., Choi, K., Gatti, D.M., Raghupathy, N., Svenson, K.L., Churchill, G.A., and Gygi, S.P. (2016). Defining the consequences of genetic variation on a proteome-wide scale. Nature 534, 500–505. Chun, S., Casparino, A., Patsopoulos, N.A., Croteau-Chonka, D.C., Raby, B.A., De Jager, P.L., Sunyaev, S.R., and Cotsapas, C. (2017). Limited statistical evidence for shared genetic effects of eQTLs and autoimmune-diseaseassociated loci in three major immune-cell types. Nat. Genet. 49, 600–605. Claussnitzer, M., Dankel, S.N., Kim, K.H., Quon, G., Meuleman, W., Haugen, C., Glunk, V., Sousa, I.S., Beaudry, J.L., Puviindran, V., et al. (2015). FTO Obesity Variant Circuitry and Adipocyte Browning in Humans. N. Engl. J. Med. 373, 895–907. 1184 Cell 169, June 15, 2017 Cotsapas, C., Voight, B.F., Rossin, E., Lage, K., Neale, B.M., Wallace, C., Abecasis, G.R., Barrett, J.C., Behrens, T., Cho, J., et al.; FOCiS Network of Consortia (2011). Pervasive sharing of genetic effects in autoimmune disease. PLoS Genet. 7, e1002254. Davey Smith, G., and Hemani, G. (2014). Mendelian randomization: genetic anchors for causal inference in epidemiological studies. Hum. Mol. Genet. 23 (R1), R89–R98. Davidson, E.H. (2010). Emerging properties of animal gene regulatory networks. Nature 468, 911–920. De Rubeis, S., He, X., Goldberg, A.P., Poultney, C.S., Samocha, K., Cicek, A.E., Kou, Y., Liu, L., Fromer, M., Walker, S., et al.; DDD Study; Homozygosity Mapping Collaborative for Autism; UK10K Consortium (2014). Synaptic, transcriptional and chromatin genes disrupted in autism. Nature 515, 209–215. Farh, K.K.-H., Marson, A., Zhu, J., Kleinewietfeld, M., Housley, W.J., Beik, S., Shoresh, N., Whitton, H., Ryan, R.J., Shishkin, A.A., et al. (2015). Genetic and epigenetic fine mapping of causal autoimmune disease variants. Nature 518, 337–343. Field, Y., Boyle, E.A., Telis, N., Gao, Z., Gaulton, K.J., Golan, D., Yengo, L., Rocheleau, G., Froguel, P., McCarthy, M.I., and Pritchard, J.K. (2016). Detection of human adaptation during the past 2000 years. Science 354, 760–764. Finucane, H.K., Bulik-Sullivan, B., Gusev, A., Trynka, G., Reshef, Y., Loh, P.-R., Anttila, V., Xu, H., Zang, C., Farh, K., et al.; ReproGen Consortium; Schizophrenia Working Group of the Psychiatric Genomics Consortium; RACI Consortium (2015). Partitioning heritability by functional annotation using genome-wide association summary statistics. Nat. Genet. 47, 1228–1235. Fisher, R.A. (1918). The correlation between relatives on the supposition of Mendelian inheritance. Trans. R. Soc. Edinb. 52, 399–433. Fromer, M., Pocklington, A.J., Kavanagh, D.H., Williams, H.J., Dwyer, S., Gormley, P., Georgieva, L., Rees, E., Palta, P., Ruderfer, D.M., et al. (2014). De novo mutations in schizophrenia implicate synaptic networks. Nature 506, 179–184. Furlong, L.I. (2013). Human diseases through the lens of network biology. Trends Genet. 29, 150–159. Goldstein, D.B. (2009). Common genetic variation and human traits. N. Engl. J. Med. 360, 1696–1698. GTEx Consortium (2015). Human genomics. The Genotype-Tissue Expression (GTEx) pilot analysis: multitissue gene regulation in humans. Science 348, 648–660. Hu, X., Kim, H., Stahl, E., Plenge, R., Daly, M., and Raychaudhuri, S. (2011). Integrating autoimmune risk loci with gene-expression data identifies specific pathogenic immune cell subsets. Am. J. Hum. Genet. 89, 496–506. International HapMap Consortium (2005). A haplotype map of the human genome. Nature 437, 1299–1320. Jo, B., He, Y., Strober, B.J., Parsana, P., Aguet, F., Brown, A.A., Castel, S.E., Gamazon, E.R., Gewirtz, A., Gliner, G., et al. (2016). Distant regulatory effects of genetic variation in multiple human tissues. bioRxiv, 1101/074419. Jostins, L., Ripke, S., Weersma, R.K., Duerr, R.H., McGovern, D.P., Hui, K.Y., Lee, J.C., Schumm, L.P., Sharma, Y., Anderson, C.A., et al.; International IBD Genetics Consortium (IIBDGC) (2012). Host-microbe interactions have shaped the genetic architecture of inflammatory bowel disease. Nature 491, 119–124. Juster, F.T., and Suzman, R. (1995). An overview of the Health and Retirement Study. J. Hum. Resour. 30, S7–S56. Krumm, N., Turner, T.N., Baker, C., Vives, L., Mohajeri, K., Witherspoon, K., Raja, A., Coe, B.P., Stessman, H.A., He, Z.-X., et al. (2015). Excess of rare, inherited truncating mutations in autism. Nat. Genet. 47, 582–588. Kundaje, A., Meuleman, W., Ernst, J., Bilenky, M., Yen, A., Heravi-Moussavi, A., Kheradpour, P., Zhang, Z., Wang, J., Ziller, M.J., et al.; Roadmap Epigenomics Consortium (2015). Integrative analysis of 111 reference human epigenomes. Nature 518, 317–330. Li, Y.I., van de Geijn, B., Raj, A., Knowles, D.A., Petti, A.A., Golan, D., Gilad, Y., and Pritchard, J.K. (2016). RNA splicing is a primary link between genetic variation and disease. Science 352, 600–604. Locke, A.E., Kahali, B., Berndt, S.I., Justice, A.E., Pers, T.H., Day, F.R., Powell, C., Vedantam, S., Buchkovich, M.L., Yang, J., et al.; LifeLines Cohort Study; ADIPOGen Consortium; AGEN-BMI Working Group; CARDIOGRAMplusC4D Consortium; CKDGen Consortium; GLGC; ICBP; MAGIC Investigators; MuTHER Consortium; MIGen Consortium; PAGE Consortium; ReproGen Consortium; GENIE Consortium; International Endogene Consortium (2015). Genetic studies of body mass index yield new insights for obesity biology. Nature 518, 197–206. Loh, P.-R., Bhatia, G., Gusev, A., Finucane, H.K., Bulik-Sullivan, B.K., Pollack, S.J., de Candia, T.R., Lee, S.H., Wray, N.R., Kendler, K.S., et al.; Schizophrenia Working Group of Psychiatric Genomics Consortium (2015). Contrasting genetic architectures of schizophrenia and other complex diseases using fast variance-components analysis. Nat. Genet. 47, 1385–1392. Manolio, T.A., Collins, F.S., Cox, N.J., Goldstein, D.B., Hindorff, L.A., Hunter, D.J., McCarthy, M.I., Ramos, E.M., Cardon, L.R., Chakravarti, A., et al. (2009). Finding the missing heritability of complex diseases. Nature 461, 747–753. Marouli, E., Graff, M., Medina-Gomez, C., Lo, K.S., Wood, A.R., Kjaer, T.R., Fine, R.S., Lu, Y., Schurmann, C., Highland, H.M., et al.; EPIC-InterAct Consortium; CHD Exome+ Consortium; ExomeBP Consortium; T2D-Genes Consortium; GoT2D Genes Consortium; Global Lipids Genetics Consortium; ReproGen Consortium; MAGIC Investigators (2017). Rare and low-frequency coding variants alter human adult height. Nature 542, 186–190. Maurano, M.T., Humbert, R., Rynes, E., Thurman, R.E., Haugen, E., Wang, H., Reynolds, A.P., Sandstrom, R., Qu, H., Brody, J., et al. (2012). Systematic localization of common disease-associated variation in regulatory DNA. Science 337, 1190–1195. Pickrell, J.K. (2014). Joint analysis of functional genomic data and genomewide association studies of 18 human traits. Am. J. Hum. Genet. 94, 559–573. Pickrell, J.K., Berisa, T., Liu, J.Z., Se´ gurel, L., Tung, J.Y., and Hinds, D.A. (2016). Detection and interpretation of shared genetic influences on 42 human traits. Nat. Genet. 48, 709–717. Preininger, M., Arafat, D., Kim, J., Nath, A.P., Idaghdour, Y., Brigham, K.L., and Gibson, G. (2013). Blood-informative transcripts define nine common axes of peripheral blood gene expression. PLoS Genet. 9, e1003362. Price, A.L., Helgason, A., Thorleifsson, G., McCarroll, S.A., Kong, A., and Stefansson, K. (2011). Single-tissue and cross-tissue heritability of gene expression via identity-by-descent in related or unrelated individuals. PLoS Genet. 7, e1001317. Pritchard, J.K., Pickrell, J.K., and Coop, G. (2010). The genetics of human adaptation: hard sweeps, soft sweeps, and polygenic adaptation. Curr. Biol. 20, R208–R215. Purcell, S.M., Wray, N.R., Stone, J.L., Visscher, P.M., O’Donovan, M.C., Sullivan, P.F., Sklar, P., Ruderfer, D.M., McQuillin, A., Morris, D.W., et al.; International Schizophrenia Consortium (2009). Common polygenic variation contributes to risk of schizophrenia and bipolar disorder. Nature 460, 748–752. Purcell, S.M., Moran, J.L., Fromer, M., Ruderfer, D., Solovieff, N., Roussos, P., O’Dushlaine, C., Chambert, K., Bergen, S.E., Ka¨ hler, A., et al. (2014). A polygenic burden of rare disruptive mutations in schizophrenia. Nature 506, 185–190. Ripke, S., Neale, B.M., Corvin, A., Walters, J.T., Farh, K.-H., Holmans, P.A., Lee, P., Bulik-Sullivan, B., Collier, D.A., Huang, H., et al.; Schizophrenia Working Group of the Psychiatric Genomics Consortium (2014). Biological insights from 108 schizophrenia-associated genetic loci. Nature 511, 421–427. Risch, N., Spiker, D., Lotspeich, L., Nouri, N., Hinds, D., Hallmayer, J., Kalaydjieva, L., McCague, P., Dimiceli, S., Pitts, T., et al. (1999). A genomic screen of autism: evidence for a multilocus etiology. Am. J. Hum. Genet. 65, 493–507. Sekar, A., Bialas, A.R., de Rivera, H., Davis, A., Hammond, T.R., Kamitaki, N., Tooley, K., Presumey, J., Baum, M., Van Doren, V., et al.; Schizophrenia Working Group of the Psychiatric Genomics Consortium (2016). Schizophrenia risk from complex variation of complement component 4. Nature 530, 177–183. Cell 169, June 15, 2017 1185 Shi, H., Kichaev, G., and Pasaniuc, B. (2016). Contrasting the genetic architecture of 30 complex traits from summary association data. Am. J. Hum. Genet. 99, 139–153. Simons, Y.B., Turchin, M.C., Pritchard, J.K., and Sella, G. (2014). The deleterious mutation load is insensitive to recent population history. Nat. Genet. 46, 220–224. Smemo, S., Tena, J.J., Kim, K.-H., Gamazon, E.R., Sakabe, N.J., Go´ mezMarı´n, C., Aneas, I., Credidio, F.L., Sobreira, D.R., Wasserman, N.F., et al. (2014). Obesity-associated variants within FTO form long-range functional connections with IRX3. Nature 507, 371–375. Sonawane, A.R., Platig, J., Fagny, M., Chen, C.-Y., Paulson, J.N., Lopes-Ramos, C.M., DeMeo, D.L., Quackenbush, J., Glass, K., and Kuijjer, M.L. (2017). Understanding tissue-specific gene regulation. bioRxiv, 1101/110601. Stephens, M. (2017). False discovery rates: a new deal. Biostatistics 18, 275–294. Strogatz, S.H. (2001). Exploring complex networks. Nature 410, 268–276. Sullivan, P.F., Agrawal, A., Bulik, C., Andreassen, O.A., Borglum, A., Breen, G., Cichon, S., Edenberg, H., Faraone, S.V., Gelernter, J., Mathews, C.A., Nievergelt, C.M., Smoller, J., and O’Donovan, M. (2017). Psychiatric Genomics: An Update and an Agenda. bioRxiv, Sun, B.B., Maranville, J.C., Peters, J.E., Stacey, D., Staley, J.R., Blackshaw, J., Burgess, S., Jiang, T., Paige, E., Surendran, P., et al. (2017). Consequences Of Natural Perturbations In The Human Plasma Proteome. bioRxiv. https://doi. org/10.1101/134551. The Psychiatric Genetics Consortium (2016). Contribution of copy number variants to schizophrenia from a genome-wide study of 41,321 subjects. Nat. Genet. 49, 27–35. Trynka, G., Sandor, C., Han, B., Xu, H., Stranger, B.E., Liu, X.S., and Raychaudhuri, S. (2013). Chromatin marks identify critical cell types for fine mapping complex trait variants. Nat. Genet. 45, 124–130. Turchin, M.C., Chiang, C.W., Palmer, C.D., Sankararaman, S., Reich, D., and Genetic Investigation of Anthropometric Traits Consortium, and Hirschhorn, J.N. (2012). Evidence of widespread selection on standing variation in Europe at height-associated SNPs. Nat. Genet 44, 1015–1019. Visscher, P.M., and Yang, J. (2016). A plethora of pleiotropy across complex traits. Nat. Genet. 48, 707–708. Visscher, P.M., Medland, S.E., Ferreira, M.A., Morley, K.I., Zhu, G., Cornes, B.K., Montgomery, G.W., and Martin, N.G. (2006). Assumption-free estimation of heritability from genome-wide identity-by-descent sharing between full siblings. PLoS Genet. 2, e41. Vitti, J.J., Grossman, S.R., and Sabeti, P.C. (2013). Detecting natural selection in genomic data. Annu. Rev. Genet. 47, 97–120. Wagner, G.P., and Zhang, J. (2011). The pleiotropic structure of the genotypephenotype map: the evolvability of complex organisms. Nat. Rev. Genet. 12, 204–213. Walsh, B., and Blows, M.W. (2009). Abundant genetic variation + strong selection = multivariate genetic constraints: A geometric view of adaptation. Annu. Rev. Ecol. Evol. Syst. 40, 41–59. Watts, D.J., and Strogatz, S.H. (1998). Collective dynamics of ‘small-world’ networks. Nature 393, 440–442. Weiner, D.J., Wigdor, E.M., Ripke, S., Walters, R.K., Kosmicki, J.A., Grove, J., Samocha, K.E., Goldstein, J., Okbay, A., Bybjerg-Gauholm, J., et al. (2016). Polygenic transmission disequilibrium confirms that common and rare variation act additively to create risk for autism spectrum disorders. bioRxiv, Welter, D., MacArthur, J., Morales, J., Burdett, T., Hall, P., Junkins, H., Klemm, A., Flicek, P., Manolio, T., Hindorff, L., and Parkinson, H. (2014). The NHGRI GWAS Catalog, a curated resource of SNP-trait associations. Nucleic Acids Res. 42 (Database issue, D1), D1001–D1006. Westra, H.-J., Peters, M.J., Esko, T., Yaghootkar, H., Schurmann, C., Kettunen, J., Christiansen, M.W., Fairfax, B.P., Schramm, K., Powell, J.E., et al. (2013). Systematic identification of trans eQTLs as putative drivers of known disease associations. Nat. Genet. 45, 1238–1243. Wood, A.R., Esko, T., Yang, J., Vedantam, S., Pers, T.H., Gustafsson, S., Chu, A.Y., Estrada, K., Luan, J., Kutalik, Z., et al.; Electronic Medical Records and Genomics (eMEMERGEGE) Consortium; MIGen Consortium; PAGEGE Consortium; LifeLines Cohort Study (2014). Defining the role of common variation in the genomic and biological architecture of adult human height. Nat. Genet. 46, 1173–1186. Yang, J., Benyamin, B., McEvoy, B.P., Gordon, S., Henders, A.K., Nyholt, D.R., Madden, P.A., Heath, A.C., Martin, N.G., Montgomery, G.W., et al. (2010). Common SNPs explain a large proportion of the heritability for human height. Nat. Genet. 42, 565–569.

        0 0

        A remarkable validation of the Indus Script decipherment as wealth-creating data archives of metalwork of Bronze Age comes from a Kushana Vohu manah coin.

        Vohu Manah

        Since Vohu Manah is the closest of the amesha spentas to Ahura Mazdā, the second month of the Zoroastrian calendar is dedicated to him. His sacred animal is the cow, symbol of the goodness that nourishes. [unquote]
        Vohu Manah with four armed Indic iconography in a Kushana coin. 2nd century CE
        linguistic cognate of vasu-manas a moon deity of the vasu class (soma) among Indo-Aryans

        The dotted-circle hieroglyph (Indus Script) is held on the left hand ligatured with six dots (Indus Script hieroglyph). The hypertext is read rebus:
        baṭa 'six' rebus: bhaṭa 'furnace
        Dotted circle (cross-section representation of a strand): Hieroglyph:  धातु [p= 513,3] m. layer , stratum Ka1tyS3r. Kaus3. constituent part , ingredient (esp. [ and in RV. only] ifc. , where often = " fold " e.g. त्रि-ध्/आतु , threefold &c cf.त्रिविष्टि- , सप्त- , सु-RV. TS. S3Br. &c (Monier-Williams) dhāˊtu  *strand of rope ʼ (cf. tridhāˊtu -- ʻ threefold ʼ RV., ayugdhātu -- ʻ having an uneven number of strands ʼ KātyŚr.).; S. dhāī f. ʻ wisp of fibres added from time to time to a rope that is being twisted ʼ, L. dhāī˜ f.(CDIAL 6773)

        Rebus: M. dhāūdhāv m.f. ʻ a partic. soft red stone ʼ (whence dhā̆vaḍ m. ʻ a caste of iron -- smelters ʼ, dhāvḍī ʻ composed of or relating to iron ʼ); dhāˊtu n. ʻ substance ʼ RV., m. ʻ element ʼ MBh., ʻ metal, mineral, ore (esp. of a red colour) ʼ; Pk. dhāu -- m. ʻ metal, red chalk ʼ; N. dhāu ʻ ore (esp. of copper) ʼ; Or. ḍhāu ʻ red chalk, red ochre ʼ (whence ḍhāuā ʻ reddish ʼ; (CDIAL 6773) धातु  primary element of the earth i.e. metal , mineral, ore (esp. a mineral of a red colour) Mn. MBh. &c element of words i.e. grammatical or verbal root or stem Nir. Pra1t. MBh. &c (with the southern Buddhists धातु means either the 6 elements [see above] Dharmas. xxv ; or the 18 elementary spheres [धातु-लोक] ib. lviii ; or the ashes of the body , relics L. [cf. -गर्भ]) (Monier-Williams. Samskritam).

        The ring (torc) held on Vohu's right hand is dhamma (dharma) samjñā, 'responsibility badge' signifying the holder as a guild functionary, comparable to the rings (torcs) on the boatman on the Boatman's pillar of Paris (1st cent. CE) and on 22 stoneware bangles in Indus Script Corpora.See details at

        See Kernunno of Pilier des Nautes (cognate 

        He is a blacksmith, helmsman
        karã̄ʻwristlets, banglesʼ.(Gujarati)(CDIAL 2779) Rebus: khār खार्  'blacksmith' (Kashmiri)

        The entire Indus Script Corpora inscriptions signify vasu (wealth) data archives of metalwork. 

        Μαναοβαγο, (manaobago, Vohu Manah)
        Reverse of gold coin of the Kushan Empire, possibly of Vasudeva I. Manaobago depicted on the reverse.
        • Bactrian Manaobago is linked with ‘Vohu Manah’, the Zoroastrian concept of good mind and finds equivalents in Sanskrit ‘vasu manas’ meaning good purpose or good mind.
        • Some say that he is the source of the moon god ‘Maonhobago’ as he appears with a crescent on his shoulders on the coins of Kanishka I and Huvishka.
        Vohu Manah (vōhu-mánāh) is the Avestan language term for a Zoroastrian concept, generally translated as "Good Purpose", "Good Mind", or "Good Thought", referring to the good moral state of mind that enables an individual to accomplish his duties. Its Middle Persian equivalent, as attested in the Pahlavi script texts of Zoroastrian tradition, is Wahman, which is a borrowing of the Avestan language expression and has the same meaning, and which continues in New Persian as Bahman and variants. Manah is cognate with the Sanskrit word Manas suggesting some commonality between the ideas of the Gathas and those of the rig veda. The opposite of Vohu Manah is Aka Manah, "evil purpose".
        In the Gathas, the oldest texts of the Avesta and considered to be composed by Zoroaster himself, the term 'Vohu Manah' is not unambiguously used as a proper name and frequently occurs without the "Good" (Vohu-) prefix.
        In the post-Gathic texts that expound the principles of Zoroastrian cosmogony, Vohu Manah is an Amesha Spenta, one of six "divine sparks" of Ahura Mazda that each represent one facet of creation. In the case of Vohu Manah, this is all animal creation, with a particular stress on cattle. Vohu Manah is of neutral gender in Avestan grammar but in Zoroastrian tradition is considered masculine.
        In the Zoroastrian calendar, the second day of each month as well as the eleventh month of each year are dedicated to Vohu Manah. In the Iranian civil calendar, which inherits the names of the months from the Zoroastrian calendar, the 11th month is likewise named Bahman.
        The Achaemenid emperor Artaxerxes II (as it is rendered in Greek) had 'Vohu Manah' as the second part of his throne name, which when "translated" into Greek appeared as 'Mnemon'. New Persian Bahman remains a theophoric in present-day Iranian and Zoroastrian tradition.


        Association with Bronze Age metalwork is evident in the following excursus on Vohu manah:

        [quote]There is no evidence in the Gāθās that Zoroaster himself conceived of the six Aməša Spəntas hierarchically (cf. Lommel, op. cit., p. 47); but the group divides naturally into three dyads, with Aša paired with Vohu Manah. (For the many Gathic passages in which the two are mentioned together see Gray, op. cit., pp. 28ff.)
        The opening sections of the old Av. Yasna Haptaŋhāiti formerly, it seems, accompanied the priestly offering to fire; and in them Aša is repeatedly named, alone or with Ahura Mazdā, and once with Vohu Manah and Vohu Xšaθra (Y. 35.10). He receives there the epithets sraēšta- “most beautiful” (Y. 35.3), Vahišta- “best” (Y. 35.5, cf. Y. 41.1), and vohu- “good” (Y. 36.4); and is worshipped as “Aša Vahišta, most beautiful, the Aməša Spənta, radiant (raočahvant-)” (Y. 37.4). The veneration of fire is explicit; and once ( Y. 37.1) Aša appears himself to represent fire in what is otherwise a list of physical creations. Later in the liturgy the worshippers seek “companionship with Ahura Mazdā and Aša for ever” (Y. 40.2, cf. 41.6), and ask that the community should be made Ašavan- “possessing Aša” and Aša-činah- “attached to aša” (Y. 40.3). Ahura Mazdā himself they venerate as Aša.ŋhac- “accompanied by Aša” (Y. 41 .3).
        One of the four holiest Zoroastrian prayers, the Ašəm vohu, is wholly devoted to Aša and the principle of aša; and here again the divinity has the epithet vahišta-, as regularly in Young Av. texts. He is frequently associated in the yasna with Ātar, yazata of fire (e.g., Y. 1.4 ; 2.4; 3.6 et passim). There is also a special link between him and Airyaman, yazata of friendship and healing, implied in the Ardwahišt Yašt (cf. Dēnkard 3. 157.7). The xšnūman or liturgical invocation of Aša is “Aša Vahišta, most beautiful, the Aməša Spənta;” and, thus invoked, he is regularly associated with Airyaman and Saokā (see Sīrōza 1.3, 2.3). According to the Zand (Pahlavi version) of a lost Av. text, preserved in a 9th century Pahlavi work, towards the end of time Aša and Airyaman will come upon earth together to initiate the conquest of the demon Āz (Zātspram 34.38-9); and subsequently it is Aša’s creation, fire, which together with Airyaman will purge the whole earth with molten metal (Bundahišn, tr. 34.18).
        In one place in the Zand (ibid., 26.38) it is said that after Ahura Mazdā had created the six great Aməša Spəntas, he himself being the other and best member of the group, he asked them: “Who created us?” They remained silent, and he asked a second and a third time. Finally Ardwahišt replied: “You created us,” and the other then repeated this with him. The Pahlavi text continues: “Ohrmazd forthwith made Ardwahišt the base (teh) of all that is spiritual;” but there follows, probably by a commentator, a play on words: “Even as Wahman is great (meh), so Ardwahišt is the base (teh)” (ibid., 26.39); for in the tradition Wahman (Vohu Manah) is regularly the first of the six, and stands on the right hand of Ohrmazd, with Ašawahišt on his right hand (ibid., 26.8). The close Gathic partnership of Aša and Vohu Manah is faithfully reflected in the tradition, e.g., in the legend of the prophet’s birth both are consulted by Ohrmazd, and carry out his commands together (see Dēnkard 7.2.17, 25ff.; M. Molé, La légende de Zoroastre selon les textes pehlevis, Paris, 1967, pp. 16ff.). Here Wahman is invariably named first, but again it is Ašawahišt who is the spokesman (Dēnkard, 7.2.18); and at the conversion of Wištāsp it is to him that Ohrmazd sends Nēryōsang with a message, and it is he who, acting upon this message, brings about the king’s final acceptance of the faith (Dēnkard 7.4.85-86; Molé, op. cit., p. 57). 

        0 0


        Saturday, 24 June 2017

        A German scholar, Rainer Stuhrmaan, has written a paper in German, entitled "Die Zehnkönigsschlacht am Ravifluß" ("The Ten Kings' Battle on the Ravi"), appearing in Witzel's "Electronic Journal of Vedic Studies", Volume 23 (2016), Issue 1:

        The paper itself is in German, a language which is Greek to Indian (Hindu) bank-employee yokels like myself, but, fortunately, we have a summary of the paper translated (from German to English) by none other than Witzel himself, which sheds a little light on the scholarly findings published in this paper. This paper is important because it shows more clearly than anything else how Indological studies in western academia are nothing short of a joke: paper after paper is still written by scholar after scholar, reiterating utterly discredited and disproved themes and ideas which carry on nineteenth century misconceptions with the doggedness of the horse with cast-iron blinkers, who can neither see, nor is expected to see, newer interpretations and new facts and data in deeply-researched papers by writers outside the hallowed circle of the closed-door clique that constitutes the "peer reviewed" mutual admiration society that is western academia. It shows the utterly fake, fraudulent and outdated nature of present-day western "Indology", which has become nothing more than a powerful, academically recognized and financed, propaganda club or juvenile writers' cottage industry.

        Before examining (on the basis of the translated summary of the paper by Witzel) the hopelessly outdated aspects of Stuhrmann's paper, it will be pertinent to point out a few positive points in Stuhrmann's paper:

        1. First, when he quotes Witzel in describing the Battle of the Ten Kings as the "main political occurrence of the Rig-Veda (Witzel 2007:435)". Indeed it is the main (and oldest recorded) political occurrence in Indo-European history, since it records the presence of five (Indo-Aryan, Iranian, Armenian, Greek and Albanian) of the twelve recognized branches of Indo-European languages, in fact the very five branches classified by linguists as being the last five branches to remain in any proposed Homeland after the departure of the other seven branches, in the most important historical event in the Homeland before the migration of four of these branches from that Homeland. See the last section of part 3 of my blogspot article:

        2. Two, when he goes against the consensus of most western Indologists that treats the Pūru tribe as being among the enemies of Sudās in the battle. Apart from accepting that the Bharata-s were "a subtribe of the Pūru", he writes: "Because of stanza 13 most interpreters of the hymn 7.18 are of the opinion that the Pūru who are allied with the Bharata throughout the Rig-Veda, belong to the defeated enemies of Sudās. However [….] the Pūru somehow must have been on the side of King Sudās and the Bharata, though not in the actual Ten kings' battle". Of course, he immediately spoils it by reiterating the usual Indological confusion, identifying the Purukutsa with the Pūru tribe! [Note: in his pointless "review" of my second book in 2001, Witzel had treated my use of the word "king" for Sudās as indicative of my pathetic ignorance of the state of the Civilization in Rigvedic times!]

        3. Three, when, in the face of a determined trend among political scholars, including Witzel, who have all along maintained that the Sarasvatī of the Rigveda is the present-day Ghaggar-Hakra river, but (after my three books) have now suddenly started a campaign to deny the identification, Stuhrmann writes: "archeological research of Mughal and others have shown that until the mid-second millennium BCE the banks of the Sarasvatī were still dotted with Indus Culture settlements", thus confirming the identity of the two rivers.

        Apart from these little points, Stuhrmann writes as if nothing has been written about the Battle of the Ten Kings since the nineteenth century (apart, of course, from the writings of "scholars" like Witzel, who also have not moved beyond the nineteenth century). Hecompletely ignores (as we will see in detail presently) not only the irrefutable conclusions demonstrated by me in my books, but also the actual data in the Rigveda on the basis of which I have drawn those conclusions, and bases his interpretations wholly and solely onpurely extraneous theories and hypotheses which have been concocted by the Indologists on the principle that the Rigveda simply should not be treated as a source book of data and that theories and hypotheses about the Rigveda are to be concocted strictly without reference to any data from the text.

        The two main discredited points Stuhrmann reiterates throughout his paper is a) that the enemies of Sudās and the Bharata-s in the battle were mainly "indigenous non-Aryans" native to the area of the Indus Civilization, and b) that the direction of movement and conquest of Sudās and the Bharata-s was from "west to east":

        I. "Indigenous Non-Aryans"

        Stuhrmann tells us: "Shortly after crossing the Ravi river, he[Sudās] was encircled by an alliance of Aryan and non-Aryan tribes", and again: "The alliance consisted of Aryan and non-Aryan tribes with whom the earlier Aryan immigrants, such as the Turvaśa, Yadu and Druhyu, had allied themselves". He continues: "much points to non-Aryan indigenous tribes settled on the banks of the Ravi river and belonging to a 'hydraulic' civilization that had mastered the knowledge and tools necessary to affect a river system. In fact, there are many indications in the Rig-Veda of a hydraulic civilization that was familiar with river management by controls, dykes, reinforcement of dykes and with sluices - in other other words: the Indus civilization". In short, the "Aryan Invasion" of the "non-Aryan indigenous" Indus civilization, according to Stuhrmann, is actually recorded as the "main political occurrence of the Rig-Veda (Witzel 2007:435)". He generously concedes that these "non-Aryan indigenous tribes" (i.e. the people of the Indus civilization) had some "allies" among some "earlier Aryan immigrants, such as the Turvaśa, Yadu and Druhyu", thereby making it perfunctorily "an alliance of Aryan and non-Aryan tribes".

        The insolence of such claims continuously being made in these Indological papers is breath-taking. These "scholars" at least should be aware that "Aryan" and "non-Aryan" (as they use these terms) are not general adjectives meaning something like "good" and "bad" or "pleasant" and "unpleasant" or "noble" and "ignoble" to be used in a general and subjective sense. Precisely speaking, in the context in which these "scholars" use them, they mean "Indo-European" and "non-Indo-European" in a very precise linguistic sense. But, even as they freely describe the enemies of Sudās as "non-Aryan", they are not able to give one single example of a word, in the hymns referring to the battle, which could be interpreted as a reference to any entity which could be categorized as linguistically non-Indo-European: not one word which can be linguistically identified as referring to speakers of a Dravidian language, an Austric (Kol-Munda) language, the Burushaski language, or an Andamanese dialect, or, for that matter, a Semitic, Sino-Tibetan, Uralo-Altaic or any other language belonging to any known language family in existence (or now extinct, like the Sumerian language) anywhere in the world. Then in exactly what sense do they have the academic guts to describe the enemies of Sudās as "non-Aryan"?

        On the other hand, the data in the Rigveda makes it very clear that the enemies of Sudās (who belonged to the Bharata sub-tribe of the Pūru tribal conglomerate) belonged to the Anu tribal conglomerate. In fact, as I have pointed out in detail in my books, and in the last section of part 3 of my blogspot article cited earlier, the enemy tribes, specifically named in the two battle hymns, bear the names of the ancient tribes among the Iranian, Armenian, Greek and Albanian branches of Indo-European languages. To quote from that blog, the two hymns use the following tribal appellations for the enemies of Sudās who belonged to the Anu tribal conglomerate:
        VII.18.5 Śimyu.
        VII.18.6 Bhṛgu.
        VII.18.7 Paktha, Bhalāna, Alina, Śiva, Viṣāṇin.
        VII.83.1 Parśu/Parśava, Pṛthu/Pārthava, Dāsa.
        [Puranic Anus: Madra.]

        To further quote from my above blog:
        These tribal names are primarily found only in two hymns, VII.18 andVII.83, of the Rigveda, which refer to the Anu tribes who fought against Sudās in the dāśarājña battle or "the Battle of the Ten Kings". But see where these same tribal names are found in later historical times (after their exodus westwards referred to in VII.5.3 and VII.6.3).  Incredibly, they cover, in an almost continuous geographical belt, the entire sweep of areas extending westwards from the Punjab (the battleground of the dāśarājña battle) right up to southern and eastern Europe:

        (Avestan) Afghanistan: Proto-Iranian: Sairima (Śimyu), Dahi (Dāsa).
        NE Afghanistan: Proto-Iranian: Nuristani/Piśācin (Viṣāṇin).  
        Pakhtoonistan (NW Pakistan), South Afghanistan: Iranian: Pakhtoon/Pashtu (Paktha).
        Baluchistan (SW Pakistan), SE Iran: Iranian: Bolan/Baluchi (Bhalāna).
        NE Iran: Iranian: Parthian/Parthava (Pṛthu/Pārthava).
        SW Iran: Iranian: Parsua/Persian (Parśu/Parśava).
        NW Iran: Iranian: Madai/Mede (Madra).
        Uzbekistan: Iranian: Khiva/Khwarezmian (Śiva).
        W. Turkmenistan: Iranian: Dahae (Dāsa).
        Ukraine, S, Russia: Iranian: Alan (Alina), Sarmatian (Śimyu).
        Turkey: Thraco-Phrygian/Armenian: Phryge/Phrygian (Bhṛgu).
        Romania, Bulgaria: Thraco-Phrygian/Armenian: Dacian (Dāsa).
        Greece: Greek: Hellene (Alina).
        Albania: Albanian: Sirmio (Śimyu).

        a) The leader of the enemy alliance is Kavi Cāyamāna: Kauui is an Iranian (Avestan) name.
        b) The priest of the enemy alliance is KavaaKaoša is an Iranian (Avestan) name.
        c) Kavi Cāyamāna  of the battle hymn was a descendant of Abhyāvartin Cāyamāna, who is described in the Rigveda (VI.27.8) as a Pārthava. The later Iranian (Avestan) dynasty (after the Iranians migrated westwards from the Rigvedic Greater Punjab into Afghanistan, and composed the Avesta), the oldest Iranian dynasty in historical record (outside the Rigveda) to which belongedZarathushtra's patron king and foremost disciple Vištāspa, is theKavyān (Pahlavi Kayanian) dynasty descended from this sameKavi/Kauui. In later historical times, it is the Parthians (Parthava) who maintained a strong tradition that the kings of the Kavyāndynasty of the Avesta belonged to their tribe.

        In the face of all this very specific and detailed evidence within the hymns, in the form of the actual concrete data in the Rigveda, can these Indological papers, which continue to describe the enemies of Sudās in the Battle of the Ten Kings as linguistic "non-Aryans", without finding it necessary to produce an iota of evidence for this claim, be regarded as anything but lies and trash?

        In the process, Stuhrmann refers to Sudās and the Bharata-s as "the Pūru and Bharata latecomers", and as "Vedic conquerors". Hindu opponents of the AIT will object to these phrases, especially to the idea that the actions of Sudās and the Bharata-s were the actions of "conquerors", and would instead insist that it was a fight  between "good Aryans" (represented by Sudās and the Bharata-s) and "fallen Aryans" (represented by their enemies), and insist that these "good Aryans" were somehow provoked into attacking, or were even fighting in self-defence against, an unholy alliance. However, the two phrases are right, but not in the sense that Stuhrmann uses them: the Pūru-Bharata tribes were indeed imperialistic "conquerors" of the land and territory of other tribes, but they were not originally non-Indian "Aryan/Indo-European" tribes from the west conquering the land of indigenous Indian "non-Aryans/non-Indo-Europeans", they were indigenous Indian "Aryans/Indo-Europeans" (Pūru-s) from the east conquering the land of other equally indigenous Indian "Aryans/Indo-Europeans" (Anu-s) to their west, a normal (if unfortunate) phenomenon of mutually warring and conquering tribes that can be seen in any ancient civilization in the world. And they were "newcomers" not into India, but "newcomers" (as conquerors) from Haryana and western U.P. in the east into the then Punjab area of the Anu-s. Both these groups of tribes were components of what Stuhrmann calls "the Indus civilization" (or, more correctly, "the Indus-Sarasvati civilization").

        II. "From West to East" or "From East to West"?

        Even more brazenly, Stuhrmann tells us: "Along the Bharatas' trail of conquest [….] Sudās had crossed the Ravi from west to east, just as he had, earlier on, the Indus". He repeats the lie: "the Ten Kings battle took place after the crossing of the Ravi river from west to east". And then: "it opened up the further path eastward into the Indian core territory, where the Vedic conquerors followed the carriers of the Indus civilization that had been weakened by tectonic and hydrological changes".

        Let us start examining this trail of lies from the starting point in Stuhrmann's story: the crossing of the Indus river "earlier on" by Sudās:
        The three Oldest Books of the Rigveda, in that order, are 6, 3 and 7. In any case, more relevant to the point under discussion, these are the books associated with the periods of Sudās and his ancestors: "In Book 6 of the Bharadvāja, the Bharatas and their king Divodāsa play a central role" (WITZEL 1995b:332-333), and "Book 3 [….] represents the time of king Sudās" (WITZEL 1995b:317) (as, obviously does book 7, the Book of the Battle of the Ten Kings). In these three Books, the word "Sindhu" is used only in its original etymological sense of "river": except in 8 verses, it is used in the plural in the sense "rivers". In the 8 verses where the word is used in the singular, it refers in every case to a specific "river" whose identity is clear from the reference itself: Vipāś (III.33.3,5; 53.9),Paruṇī (VII.18.5), Yamunā (VII.33.3), Sarasvatī (VII.33.6; 95.1), and the ocean (VII.87.6).
        Nowhere in these three Books is there a single reference even to the Indus river itself, let alone (either in these three Books or elsewhere in the Rigveda) to any "earlier crossing" of the Indus, let alone to any "earlier crossing" of the Indus by Sudās, let alone to any "earlier crossing" of the Indus by Sudās "from west to east". So where do Witzel and Stuhrmann get the information about this "earlier crossing" of the Indus by Sudās "from west to east"? Did Sudās appear in a dream and convey this information to them?

        According to Stuhrmann's fairy-tale (and Witzel's before him), Sudās, and obviously his ancestors before him, were somewhere beyond (to the west of) the Indus river till the time Sudās and the Bharata-s set out on their "trail of conquest". Does the data in the Rigveda support this blatant and brazen lie? See what the geographical data in the Rigveda tells us, for which I will quote from part 2 of my blogspot article:

        a) The geographical area of the Early Old Books (6,3,7 in that order) [….] covers only the eastern parts of the Rigvedic area. These Early Old Books show complete ignorance of western areas, but easy familiarity with and emotional attachment to the eastern areas (in VI.61.16, the composer begs the river Sarasvatī: "let us not go from thee to distant countries"):
        These three oldest books mention the eastern riversGaṅgā/JahnāvīYamunāDṛṣadvatī/Hariyūpīyā/Yavyāvatī,ĀpayāSarasvatīŚutudrīVipāśParuṣṇīAsiknī, but they do notmention the western rivers MarudvṛdhāVitastā,  Ārjīkīyā,SuṣomāSindhu and its western tributaries TriṣṭāmāSusartu,AnitabhāRasāŚvetiShvetyāvarīKubhāKrumuGomatī,SarayuMehatnuPrayiyuVayiyuSuvāstuGaurīKuṣavā, all of which are mentioned in the New Books.
        They mention the eastern place names Kīkaṭa, Iḷāspada (also calledvara ā pṛthivyā or nābhā pṛthivyā, i.e. "the best place on earth" or "the centre of the earth") but they do not mention the western place names SaptasindhavaGandhāri, both of which are mentioned in the New Books.
        They mention the eastern lake Mānuṣā, but they do not mention thewestern lake Śaryaṇāvat(ī) and the western mountains Mūjavat,Suṣom and Arjīk, all of which are mentioned in the New Books.
        They mention eastern animals like the buffalo, the gaur (Indian bison), the elephant, the peacock and the spotted deer, but they do not mention western animals (whose names are found in common with the Avesta) like the uṣṭravarāhamathrachāga,vṛṣṇiurā and meṣha, all of which are mentioned in the New Books.

        b) Further, the western place names, lake name, mountain names and animal names are missing not only in the Early Old Books (6,3,7), but also in the Middle Old Books (4,2) and in the New Book 5: in short, in all the family books. And the river names appearfrom east to west in historical contexts:
        i) The oldest Book 6 refers only to the Sarasvati (which is deified in three whole hymns, VI.61, VII.95-96, and in 52 other verses in the three Early Old Books) and to the rivers east of it: in VI.45.31 the long bushes on the banks of the Gaṅgā figure in a simile (showing their long acquaintance and easy familiarity with the topography and flora of the Gaṅgā area).
        ii) The next Book 3 refers in III.58.6 to the banks of the Jahnāvī(Gaṅgā) as the "ancient homeland" of the Gods. In III.23.3-4, it remembers the establishment of a perpetual sacred fire byDevavāta, a far ancestor of the Rigvedic king Sudas, at Iḷaspada (in Haryana) on the eastern banks of the Sarasvatī. In III.33, it refers for the first time to the first two easternmost rivers of the Punjab, theVipāś and Śutudrī, in the context of the militarist expansion in all directions (after a religious ceremony performed at vara ā pṛthivyāin Haryana) by Sudās, and the reference is to his moving from Haryana into the Punjab and crossing the two rivers with his warriors.
        iii) The next book 7 (which refers to the Yamunā in VII.18.19) describes (in VII.18, and also 19,33 and 83) the dāśarājña battle (the Battle of the Ten Kings) in which Sudās, fighting from the east on the banks of the third easternmost river of the Punjab, theParuṣṇī, fights the coalition of ten Anu tribes who are described (inVII.5.3) as the Asiknī people (as they are fighting from the west, from the direction of the fourth easternmost river of the Punjab, theAsiknī).
        The three Early Old Books (6,3,7) do not refer to rivers further west.
        iv) The Middle Old Book 4 (but not yet the Middle Old Book 2, whose riverine references are restricted to the Sarasvatī) for the first time refers to the Indus (Sindhu) and its western tributaries (Sarayu andRasā), in clear continuation of the earlier westward movement: it refers (in IV.30.18: which, incidentally, is a Redacted Hymn) to the battle fought by Sahadeva and Somakadescendants of Sudās, in an area "beyond the Sarayu".
        In short, the geography of the Rigveda in the period of the oldest book 6 and in the pre-Rigvedic period [….] is completely restricted to the area to the east of the Sarasvatī river, in Haryana and western U.P., which is regarded as "the ancient homeland". Needless to say, there is not the faintest trace in the Rigveda, even at this point of time [….], of any extra-territorial memories or migrations from the totally unknown far western areas.

        c) Even in this period [….], there is not the faintest reference in the Rigveda to any non-Indo-European language speaking (let alone specifically Dravidian or Austric language speaking) people or entities, friend or foe, in the Rigvedic area, past or present,  let alone any reference to the "Aryans" having invaded and displaced them.

        d) Even in this period [….], the rivers in the Rigvedic area have (undeniably or arguably) purely Indo-European names, with no indication that there ever were any other names. [This is a powerful indication of the indigenous nature of the Vedic Aryans. As Witzel points out: “In Europe, river names were found to reflect the languages spoken before the influx of Indo-European speaking populations. They are thus older than c. 4500-2500 B.C. (depending on the date of the spread of Indo-European languages in various parts of Europe).” (WITZEL 1995a:104-105). But, in sharp contrast, “in northern India rivers in general have early Sanskrit names from the Vedic period, and names derived from the daughter languages of Sanskrit later on". (WITZEL 1995a:105). This is "in spite of the well-known conservatism of river names. This is especially surprising in the area once occupied by the Indus Civilisation where one would have expected the survival of older names, as has been the case in Europe and the Near East. At the least, one would expect a palimpsest, as found in New England with the name of the state of Massachussetts next to the Charles river, formerly called the Massachussetts river, and such new adaptations as Stony Brook, Muddy Creek, Red River, etc., next to the adaptations of Indian names such as the Mississippi and the Missouri”.

        In the face of all this clear data in the Rigveda, which shows that the ancestors of Sudās were inhabitants of the areas (in Haryana and eastwards) to the east of the Sarasvati river many generationsbefore Sudās set out on his "trail of conquest", can these Indological papers, which continue to tell us fairy-tales about Sudās starting out "from west to east" from areas beyond (to the west of) the Indus,  and about "the Ten Kings battle" opening up "the further path eastward into the Indian core territory, where the Vedic conquerors followed the carriers of the Indus civilization that had been weakened by tectonic and hydrological changes", without finding it necessary to produce an iota of evidence for these claims, be regarded as anything but lies and trash?

        III. Common Sense and Logic

        This is the state of Western Indology today: the prestigious western Universities, and their respected "scholars", churning out Indological paper after paper full of blatant and brazen trash, completely ignoring the massive historical data in the Rigveda, and retailing centuries-old (and totally discredited) fairy tales about "Vedic conquerors" conquering "non-Aryan indigenous tribes settled on the banks of the Ravi river and belonging to a 'hydraulic' civilization [….] - in other other words: the Indus civilization". To buttress his fairy-tale, Stuhrmann goes a few steps ahead of his colleagues and cites "archeological" evidence about "an unusual high percentage of men, women and children killed by force that are found in the cemeteries and burial pits of late phase Harappa (ch 6)". So he combines his textual "evidence" with archeological "evidence" about Sudās' conquest of "the non-Aryan Indus civilization"!

        While books and research papers (such as mine) failing to uphold the "Aryan Invasion Theory" are completely ignored by the western Indologists, such trash is accepted as academically sound scholarship, published in "peer-reviewed" journals, given doctorates, and quoted as gospel truth (or veda-vākya) by official academic circles all over the world, including or especially in the Indian media and academia.
        One reason why this happens is because Indian/Hindu/anti-AIT scholarship is divided into umpteen political slots, and the writers and scholars are more busy pandering to their own religious biases, beliefs and prejudices (and those of their devout fans and admirers), or fighting their own personal ego-battles, than they are interested in countering Falsehood with Truth. In fact, the Truth pinches these scholars more than the Lies of the western Indologists. So, until all anti-AIT scholars, and all those sympathetic to the Indian side in the various "clashes of civilization" taking place in India, decide to keep aside their personal biases and prejudices, and adopt a united stance in support of what is True, Sensible and Logical, and in keeping with the facts and data, this supremacy of Lies and Falsehood will continue to prevail in the field of Indological Studies.


        WITZEL 1995a: Early Indian History: Linguistic and Textual Parameters. Witzel. Michael.  pp. 85-125 in “The Indo-Aryans of Ancient South Asia”, ed. by George Erdosy. Walter de Gruyter. Berlin, 1995.
        WITZEL 1995b: Rgvedic History: Poets, Chieftains and Politics. Witzel, Michael. pp. 307-352 in “The Indo-Aryans of Ancient South Asia”, ed. by George Erdosy. Walter de Gruyter. Berlin.  

        0 0

        Ganga: The River of Heaven

         on JUNE 24, 2017
        The Ganga, rising in the Himalayas and emptying into the Bay of Bengal, flows through one of the most densely populated regions in the world. Draining nearly one-fourth of the Indian subcontinent, it cuts through the heartland of India where its earliest kingdoms were situated. On its banks, thousands of years ago, sages established ashrams and composed hymns and texts that form the core of the Vedic tradition.  The wisdom of the Vedic rishis, in its various forms such as Yoga and Vedanta, continues to inspire people in India and the rest of the world and Vedic hymns are chanted today as they were millennia ago.
        The river begins as the Bhagirathi at the edge of the Gangotri Glacier at the height of 13,200 feet. It becomes the Ganga after joining up with the Alakananda at Devaprayag. Other tributaries merge into it before it flows from the mountains at the ashram town of Rishikesh and then moves into the plains just a few miles south at the pilgrimage city of Haridwar.
        In its course of 1500 miles, the Ganga passes through ancient cities such as Kannauj, Prayag, Varanasi, and Patna and via its distributaries in the modern cities of Kolkata and Dhaka; the modern capital of Delhi and the Mughal capital of Agra are on its tributary, the Yamuna.  Its first major distributary is the Bhagirathi-Hooghly, which travels through West Bengal.  Upon entering Bangladesh, it is known as the Padma and joins the Jamuna River, the name by which the Brahmaputra is known here. Farther downstream, the Padma joins the Meghna River, and takes on that name as it enters the Meghna Estuary, which empties into the Bay of Bengal. The Ganga delta is the world’s largest by breadth, which extends to 220 miles, and third largest by volume.
        The famous River Hymn of the Rigveda lists ten rivers of which the Ganga appears to be the easternmost with Sarasvati to its west. Archaeological remains of the Sindhu-Sarasvati tradition (also called Indus civilization) that go back to about 8000 BCE have the Sarasvati River as the main focus with most sites scattered in its valleys. The Sarasvati arose in the Himalayas just to the west of the Ganga and it is lauded in another Vedic hymn as the greatest river of its time, going from the mountains to the sea.
        Map showing the now-dry Sarasvati river
        Scholars believe that changes in climate and earthquakes caused the Sarasvati to dry up in the Western Desert about 2000 BCE. Some have speculated that the main cause of the diminution of the Sarasvati was that the course of its tributary, Yamuna, changed towards the Ganga after a major earthquake.  By the time of the Ramayana, the Mahabharata and the encyclopaedic Puranas, the Ganga was the preeminent river of Indian culture. But, Sarasvati was not forgotten. Since it didn’t reach all the way down to the sea, it was imagined to join up with the Ganga — and the tributary Yamuna — through a subterranean passage at Prayag (Allahabad). If the Ganga was the river carrying Indian culture in its broadest sense, Sarasvati remained the goddess of wisdom and learning.
        The Descent of the Ganga
        The Milky Way, called the Akaash Ganga in India
        The Ganga embodies all sacred waters in Hindu mythos and it is invoked in ritual just as Sarasvati was in an earlier age. There are three Gangas: in the heavens as the Milky Way; the familiar terrestrial river of north India; and a subterranean river. The mythology of the river can be understood within the context of Vedic cosmology according to which reality is recursive and the skies are mirrored on the earth and within one’s being and everything is interconnected.
        The samudra manthana (churning of the ocean) is one of the central themes of the Vedas, and it not only takes place only at the cosmic level but also in the heart of each individual by the dictum yat brahmaande tad pinde (as in the cosmos, so in the body). The recursion carries into the very neural pathways of the body and I have seen an Ayurveda text showing channels in the brain that mirror the Sarasvati and the Ganga.
        The Vedic sages, meditating on the banks of the Ganga and the Sarasvati, arrived at a subtle understanding of reality. They claimed that although consciousness is the one single basis of reality, limitations of the mind and of form engender duality of experience that becomes the source of ignorance and suffering. They came up with many means to overcome bondage and to find divinity within. These means can be viewed as the joining of the celestial and material currents in mind and body.
        Ritual is one way to liberation. It is sacred theatre that helps one dissociate from reflexive behaviour to find the centre of one’s being. But it can also become reflexive, the sages warn and, therefore, creativity is essential even in ritual. Other methods to salvation include direct pursuit of knowledge, devotion, service and even a life of action that includes contemplation.
        The variety of prescriptions may appear to be an excessively eclectic approach to living life. But it makes perfect sense and as the art historian Heinrich Zimmer stated: “The whole edifice of Indian civilization is imbued with spiritual meaning. The close interdependence and perfect harmonization of the two serve to counteract the natural tendency of Indian philosophy to become recondite and esoteric, removed from life and the task of the education of society. In the Hindu world, the folklore and popular mythology carry the truths and teachings of the philosophers to the masses.”
        Ganga descending to earth through Shiva’s locks as a boon to King Bhagiratha
        The point of the story of the descent (avatarana in Sanskrit) of the heavenly Ganga to Earth is to stress the connections between the spiritual and the material.  The descent was a boon to King Bhagiratha who undertook austerities to restore ancestors who had met untimely deaths, and the river is, therefore, also called Bhagirathi. However, since her turbulent force would shatter the earth, Bhagiratha entreats the Great God Shiva to receive Ganga in the coils of his hair to break her fall. From Shiva’s dreadlocks the waters are released to many waterways in the Himalayas and to a subterranean channel. For this act, Shiva is depicted in Hindu iconography as Gangaadhara (Bearer of the Ganga), with the river shown as a spout of water, rising from his hair.
        Ganga’s descent from heaven
        The Ganga is seen replicated beyond the plains of north India. The Godavari in Central India and the Kaveri in South India are each the Ganga of its region. Hindus in far lands choose a local river for the Add to dictionary ritual.
        Because Ganga descended to Earth, she is also the vehicle of ascent to the heavens. This ascent is accomplished by an actual or symbolic crossing of the river. For laypersons the crossing is done at the fords (teertha in Sanskrit) but for the learned it is through a training of the mind by one of the many forms of yoga.  A person is deemed blessed if given a sip of Ganga-water on their deathbed.
        The waters of the Ganga are considered purifying. People are aware that large portions of the river are now badly polluted but its effects are ultimately spiritual. The Ganga is all accepting and forgiving and it connects the worshiper to the larger currents of life.
        Hindu temples all over India had statues and reliefs of the goddess carved at their entrances. The Ganga’s mount is the makara which has the lower jaw of a crocodile, the snout or trunk of an elephant, the tusks and ears of a wild boar, the darting eyes of a monkey, the scales and the flexible body of a fish, and the hind feathers of a peacock. She is shown carrying a full vase (kumbha or kalasha) which represents auspiciousness, fertility and generative power. She is also shown with a parasol.

        Varanasi, the City of Light

        Varanasi, known for its fine silk and cotton fabrics, perfumes, ivory works, and sculpture, is one of the most famous pilgrimage centres on the Ganga and also one of the oldest continuously inhabited cities anywhere. Known also as Banaras, it is situated on the western bank at a place where it takes a broad crescent sweep toward the north. Seen from the river at dawn, the high-banked face of the city looks luminous, explaining its old name, Kashi (Kashi, City of Light).
        Panoramic view of Kashi from the Ganga
        Kashi Vishwanath Temple
        Most of all, Varanasi is the city of Shiva and the home of the great Kashi Vishvanath temple. This temple which is called the Vishveshvara has Shiva’s jyotirlinga, the icon of sheer light, from which Kashi gets its name. The three hills in the city are seen as the tips of Shiva’s trident. During the eleventh to the seventeenth centuries, Muslim invaders destroyed the Kashi Vishvanath at least four times and it was last rebuilt by the Maratha queen Ahilyabai Holkar in 1780.
        In the sixth century BCE, the Buddha visited Varanasi and in nearby Sarnath he delivered his first sermon.  Varanasi is also home to two of India’s great devotional poets, Kabir and Tulsidas. The Chinese traveller Xuanzang (earlier spelling Hiuen Tsang) who visited Varanasi in the seventh century, attested that the city was a centre of religious and artistic activities, and that it extended for over three miles.  He further described a mass bathing ritual held during the reign of Emperor Harsha at the confluence of Ganga and Yamuna in Prayag.

        Evening Ganga puja at the Dashaswamedh Ghat
        The eighty-four ghats – a series of steps leading to the river — along the arc-shaped Ganga symbolize the integration of the twelve signs of the zodiac with the seven divisions of space and time. Every morning approximately twenty thousand people arrive at the ghats for puja, the ritual bath, or just to gather.  The number of bathers approaches a million on special occasions such as the full moon in October–November (Karttika Purnima) and on solar and lunar eclipses.
        One of most important pilgrimages in the approximately fifty-mile Panchakroshi circuit around Varanasi includes visits to many temples and pedestrians take a few days to complete it. For the faithful, Varanasi is the holiest of places as celebrated below in a poem in the Kashi section of the ancient Skanda Purana.
        Are there not many holy places on this earth?
        Yet which of them would equal in the balance one speck of Kashi’s dust?
        Are there not many rivers running to the sea?
        Yet which of them is like the River of Heaven in Kashi?
        Are there not many fields of liberation on earth?
        Yet not one equals the smallest part of the city never forsaken by Shiva.
        The Ganga, Shiva, and Kashi: where this Trinity is watchful, no wonder
        here is found the grace that leads one on to perfect bliss.
        (Kashi Khanda 35. 7-10, from Banaras: City of Light by Diana L. Eck)
        Count Herman Keyserling in his highly regarded Indian Travel Diary (1914) wrote thus of Varanasi: “Benares is holy. Europe, grown superficial, hardly understands such truths anymore…. I feel nearer here than I have ever done to the heart of the world; here I feel every day as if soon, perhaps even to-day, I would receive the grace of supreme revelation. . . The atmosphere of devotion which hangs above the river is improbable in its strength: stronger than in any church that I have ever visited. Every would-be Christian priest would do well to sacrifice a year of his theological studies in order to spend this time on the Ganga: here he would discover what piety means. For in Europe all that exists is its remote reflection.”
        The Kumbha Mela
        The origin of the Kumbha as a congregational ritual is in the churning of the ocean by the devas (gods) and the asuras (demons). The purpose of this churning is the amrita (nectar of immortality) that both the devas and the asuras covet. At last, as the churning proceeds, a kumbha appears and in the struggle between the two parties to get hold of it, amrita spills at four places: Haridwar, Prayag, Nashik, and Ujjain on the banks of Ganga, the confluence of Ganga and Yamuna, Godavari, and Kshipra, respectively.
        The seeker wishes to connect to the cosmic by journeying to the Mela at the four places where the amrita fell.  In this he is guided by Brihaspati (Jupiter), the teacher of the devas and the pilgrimage is completed with a bath in the river. Since the orbit of Jupiter is twelve years, the Kumbha comes around at this frequency. The specific month is determined by the conjunction of Jupiter with a different nakshatra associated with the place. Every 144 years, the Mela is called a Mahakumbha.
        Mark Twain visited the Kumbha Mela of Prayag in 1895. Told that two million pilgrims come to the Mela, he spoke of his experience thus: “It is wonderful, the power of a faith like that, that can make multitudes upon multitudes of the old and weak and the young and frail enter without hesitation or complaint upon such incredible journeys and endure the resultant miseries without repining.”
        The Kumbha Melas were traditionally managed by the akharas (organizations of sadhus), but now the government makes the general arrangements. The Melas are the greatest peaceful congregations of people and there are reports that the Prayag Kumbha of 2013 attracted nearly 120 million people
        Pushkaram (or just Pushkar) is another festival dedicated to the worshiping of twelve sacred rivers that range from the Ganga to the Kaveri. This celebration takes place at specific temples along the banks in a manner quite like the Kumbha. Each river is associated with a zodiac sign, and the river for each year’s festival is based on the conjunction of the river sign with Jupiter.
        The sequence of great ritual associated with the Ganga and other rivers in India is to help the seeker find connection with the cosmos. Indian social theorists, in the dharmashastras, foresaw the problem of emptiness arising from materialism, and to counter this resulting emptiness, they exalted the idea of renunciation and self-denial. To them the pursuit of happiness was a subtle dance between enjoyment and sacrifice.
        To find the balance in one’s own life there is nothing as instructive as getting lost and rendered anonymous in the vast multitudes of the Kumbha. This is one of the reasons the Westerner is so fascinated by the congregations. These Melas, the Pushkarams and other pilgrimages are a wonderful system of spiritual journeying that is distributed across the entire land of India. They offer participation in a deeply personal yet universal act that has the potential to heal and let each person connect with the larger current of humanity.
        Subhash Kak
        Scientist, Professor, Vedic Scholar
        Subhash Kak is Regents professor at Oklahoma State University where his work has focused on artificial intelligence, quantum information, and history of science. He is also a Vedic scholar with contributions to the fields of Indian astronomy, architecture, and philosophy and he has written over a dozen books and several hundred research articles on these subjects. His two most recent books are Arrival and Exile: Selected Poems and The Circle of Memory: an Autobiography.

        0 0


        My attention has been drawn to an article published by Tony Joseph in The Hindu, dated June 17, 2017, which, in essence, tries to say that The Vedic Aryans came to India from outside. I would like to apprise the readers of the reality of the situation. I have published many books on the subject, each one dealing with a specific aspect of the issue. The latest book, The Rigvedic People: Invaders?, Immigrants? Or Indigenous?, published in 2015 by Aryan Books International, New Delhi clearly explains, using evidence of archaeology, hydrology, C-14 dating and literature,  why the Aryans were neither Invaders nor slow Immigrants, but were indigenous. I present here my arguments, as briefly as possible.

                  At the root of the trouble lies the dating of the Vedas to 1200 BCE by the German Scholar Max Muller. He did it on a very ad hoc basis and when his contemporaries, such as Goldstucker, Whitney and Wilson, challenged his methodology, he surrendered by saying, “Whether the Vedas were composed in 1000 or 2000 or 3000 BC no one on earth can ever determine.” The pity is that in spite of such a candid confession by Max Muller himself many of his followers even today stick to this date, or at the most give concession to 1500 BCE.

                  In 1920s the Harappan Civilization was discovered and dated to the 3rd millennium BCE on the basis of the occurrence of many Indus objects in the already dated archaeological contexts in Mesopotamia. This led to the immediate conclusion that since, according to Max Muller, the Vedas were not earlier than 1200 BCE, the Harappan Civilization could not have been the creation of the Vedic people.

                  In 1946 Mortimer Wheeler (later knighted) excavated Harappa and discovered a fort over there. On learning that in the Vedic texts Indra has been described as puramdara i.e. ‘destroyer of forts’, he jumped to the conclusion that the Vedic Aryans, represented by Indra, invaded India and destroyed the Harappan Civilization. But, it must be stressed that there no evidence of any kind of destruction at Harappa.

        In support of his Invasion thesis, however, Wheeler referred to some skeletons at Mohenjo-daro which he said represent the people massacred by the Invading Aryans. But the fact is that these skeletons had been found in different stratigraphic contexts, some in the Middle levels, some in the Late and some in the debris which accumulated after the desertion of the site.  Thus, these cannot be ascribed to a single event, much less to an Aryan Invasion. 

                    The ghost of ‘Invasion’ re-appeared in a new avatara, namely that of ‘Immigration’. Said Romila Thapar in 1991: “If invasion is discarded then the mechanism of migration and occasional contacts come into sharper focus. These migrations appear to have been of pastoral cattle breeders who are prominent in the Avesta and Rigveda.” Faithfully following her, R. S. Sharma elaborated:  “The pastoralists who moved to the Indian borderland came from Bactria-Margiana Archaeological Complex or BMAC which saw the genesis of the culture of the Rigveda.”

                  These assertions of Thapar and Sharma are baseless. In the first place, the BMAC is not a product of nomads. It has fortified settlements and elaborate temple-complexes. It has yielded a very rich harvest of antiquities which include silver axes, highly ornamented human and animal figurines and excellently carved seals. But what is more important is that no element of the BMAC has ever been found east of the Indus which was the area occupied by the Vedic people. So there is no case whatsoever for the BMAC people having migrated into India. 

                  Now, if there was no Aryan Invasion or an Aryan Immigration, were the Vedic people indigenous? To answer this question we must first find out the  correct chronological horizon  of the Rigveda. It refers to the river Sarasvati nearly seventy times. The river dried up before the composition of the Panchavimsa Brahmana, as this text avers.Today this dry river is identifiable with the Ghaggar in Haryana and Rajasthan. On its bank stands Kalibangan, a site of the Harappan Civilization. An Indo-Italian team, under the leadership of Robert Raikes, bore holes in the dry bed to find out its history. Raikes wrote an article in Antiquity(UK), captioning it: ‘Kalibangan: Death from Natural Causes.’  C-14 dates show that the flourishing settlement was suddenly abandoned because of the drying up of the Sarasvati around 2000 BCE. What are the implications of this discovery? Since the Sarasvati was a mighty flowing river during the Rigvedic times, the Rigveda has got to be earlier than that date. Thus, at least a 3rdmillennium-BCE horizon is indicated for the Rigveda.

                  We now pass on to another very important statement in the Rigveda. Verses 5 and 6 of Sukta 75 of Mandala 10 enumerate all the rivers serially from the Ganga and Yamuna on the east to the Indus and its western tributaries on the west. In other words, this was the area occupied by the Rigvedic people in the 3rd millennium BCE (the minimal date arrived at for the Rigveda, referred to in the previous paragraph).Now, if a simple question is asked, ‘Which archaeological culture flourished in this very area in the 3rdmillennium BCE’, the inescapable answer shall have to be, ‘The Harappan Civilization’. In other words, the Rigveda and Harappan Civilization are but two faces of the same coin. 

        The Harappan Civilization, which attained its maturity in the 3rd millennium BCE, had its formative stages at Kunal and Bhirrana in the Sarasvati valley itself, taking the beginning back to the 5th -6th millennium BCE. In other words, the Harappans were the ‘sons of the soil’. And since, as already established, the Harappan Civilization and the Rigveda are but two faces of the same coin, the Vedic Aryans ipso facto were indigenous. They were neither invaders nor immigrants.

         The application of DNA research to the Aryan debate is nothing new. The renowned scientist Sanghamitra Sahoo and colleagues had declared: “The sharing of some Y-chromosomal haplogroups between Indian and Central Asian populations is most parsimoniously explained by a deep, common ancestry between the two regions, with the diffusion of some Indian-specific lineages northward.”

        This north-westward movement of the Vedic people is duly supported by both literature and archaeology. The Baudhayana Srautasutra, a later Vedic text, mentions that Amavasu, a son of Pururavas and Urvashi, migrated westwards and his progeny are the Gandharas, Persians and Arattas. Moving through these regions, a section of the Vedic people reached Turkey where a 1380-BCE inscription from Boghaz Koi refers to a treaty between the Hittite and Mitanni kings mentioning as witnesses the Vedic gods Indra, Varuna, Mitra and Nasatya. Further, there a treatise on horse-training by one Kikkuli, which uses Sanskrit terms like ekavartana, dvivaratana andtrivartana, meaning thereby that the horses under training should be made to make one, two or three rounds of the prescribed course. What more evidence is needed to support a westward migration of the Vedic Aryans themselves?

        Let us, therefore, analyze the facts coolly and not remain glued to the 19th century paradigms! 

        0 0

        Published on Jun 22, 2017
        One week on from the horrific Grenfell Tower fire in London - we debate 'What Now?', in a special programme involving survivors, local residents, firefighters, MPs and campaigners. What is to be this country's proper long-term response?
        Grenfell Tower debate: What now? Survivors, community and politicians discuss

        Escaping the Inferno

        The fire raced up Grenfell Tower in London, forcing residents to decide: Wait for rescuers or try to get out?

        Cladding fire tests failed by 27 high-rise blocks

        • 24 June 2017
        • From the sectionUK

        Media captionWatch: Camden resident confronts council chief

        Cladding on 27 tower blocks in 15 council areas in England has failed fire safety tests, the government says.
        This comes after Camden Council became the first authority to evacuate residents over fire safety concerns, asking people living in four high-rise buildings to leave late on Friday.
        The council said it had no option but to move residents of 650 flats on the Chalcots estate while work takes place.
        Theresa May said "necessary" steps will be taken to find people accommodation.
        By Saturday morning, 83 people had refused to leave their homes.
        The council's Labour leader, Georgia Gould, said the council had acted "as swiftly as we possibly can" to ensure people's safety.
        Ms Gould said the fire service "told us they could not guarantee our residents' safety in those blocks".
        "I know it's difficult, but Grenfell changes everything and I just don't believe we can take any risk with our residents' safety and I have to put them first.
        "I offered to pay for fire stations to be stationed outside all of those blocks so we could have a couple of days to get the work done but the message was there was absolutely nothing I could do to make those blocks safe that night."
        She said that if people still choose to not leave their homes then it would "become a matter for the fire services".

        Media captionAir beds laid out in Swiss Cottage leisure centre

        Mrs May said: "We are making sure that the authority has the ability to do what is necessary to ensure people have somewhere to stay and that the work is done so that those tower blocks will become safe for them to return to in future."
        Other high-rise buildings, such as some used by the NHS, are also being tested.
        The Department for Communities and Local Government have named six of the 15 local authorities where high-rise buildings have failed fire safety tests as:
        • Camden - where residents have been evacuated from four blocks on the Chalcots estate
        • Brent - where a housing association tower block, Elizabeth House, has cladding but London Fire Brigade advises it is not a risk
        • Hounslow - where Clements Court tower in Cranford is to have outer cladding removed
        • Manchester - where 78 panels are being removed from one area of the Village 135 development in Wythenshawe
        • Plymouth - where three blocks on the Mount Wise Tower estate were found to have cladding made from similar material to Grenfell Tower
        • Portsmouth - where the city council is removing cladding from Horatia House and Leamington House in Somerstown
        The estate's cladding is similar to Grenfell Tower in west London, where a fire is feared to have killed 79.
        The Metropolitan Police say manslaughter, health and safety, and fire safety charges will be considered in relation to that blaze.
        Chalcots was refurbished between 2006 and 2009 by the same firm, Rydon, that oversaw work at Grenfell Tower in 2015-16.
        Camden Council says it will remove external thermal cladding from five tower blocks on the Chalcots estate.
        It also said there were concerns about the insulation of gas pipes going into flats, and fire doors.
        The council initially announced the evacuation of one tower block, Taplow, but later extended the move to all five tower blocks it had checked.
        In the early hours of Saturday morning, the council then announced that one of the five - Blashford - did not need to be evacuated, and residents could return, because it is smaller and has "several different design elements".

        At the scene

        By Cherry Wilson, BBC News
        Children jump on the climbing frames and kick around a ball in the playground outside Swiss Cottage leisure centre.
        It would seem like a typical Saturday morning for families, except many are laden with bags or suitcases after leaving their homes.
        Locals say they are weary, after a chaotic night of mixed messages about whether or not they can stay in their homes.
        Pamela Woodward, 72, and her husband are walking away from the centre with two black suitcases, after being told they will be put up in a hotel.
        They stayed in their tower block last night after being told at 2am that someone would be back to collect them - but no-one returned.
        Pamela said: "It's disgusting. We've lived here for 30 years and there's been two fires since the cladding was fitted and they've all been contained.