There is a bias, perhaps unconscious, but it is present nonetheless. This bias is to deny the ancients advanced technology, but it is OK if we ascribe
them advanced ideas. I want to abridge this gap between advanced ideas and advanced technology in this thread. I propose the ancients not only had
advanced ideas, they also had advanced technology(aeroplanes, WMD, computers and robots) and there is evidence to show this is true.
Advanced technology is basically applied advanced thought. The more scientific and advanced the thought the more scientific and advanced the
technology. Technology does not exist separately from science. It is clear if we look at the evolution of science and technology that technology
grows in proportion to development in scientific thought. For example complex technology like computers could not have been possible before advances
in logic and mathematics.
Advanced ideas in the ancient world
Pingala was an ancient music theorist who composed the Sanskrit treatise Chandrashastra. The Chandrashatra uses advanced computer science concepts
like hashing algorithms in order to convert letters into binary and vis versa. He also used error checking algorithms in order to ensure the accuracy
of an orally transmitted text.
Panini was an ancient Sanskrit grammarian who composed the Asthayadhi a treatise on grammar. Panini uses advanced computer concepts like recursions,
meta-rules, transformations, and computer programming conventions.
Hashing algorithms, binary, error checking codes, recursions, meta-rules are all modern computer science notions and presuppose advanced developments
in logic. The very fact that they were known in ancient times throws a proverbial spanner in the works of the current narrative of history of the
ancient world. No pun intended, but it does not compute. Applying my assumption that advanced technology is applied advanced thought. The fact that
the ancients had advanced thought necessarily means that they should have advanced technology as well. That is , they should have been well acquainted
with machines of all kinds because the very basic requirement of advanced thought was fulfilled.
There is no reason why the ancients could not have developed robots, computers, aeroplanes, advanced weapons, they were advanced enough in scientific
thought to do it. But you may protest why do we not find any evidence of the advanced machines of the ancients then? On the contrary we do, and I will
argue you are wilfully being blind. So far we have found the ancients had batteries, a very advanced mechanical computing device and we are still not
settled on how they could move 15 ton bricks and build perfectly aligned structures like the Giza Pyramids. Who knows what we find later, maybe the
remains of an ancient aeroplane?
Also, you are wilfully being blind to the largest corpus of ancient literature we can find, the Sanskrit literature of the Indians, in which there are
explicit references to machines and other advanced technology(even human cloning)
Ancient India’s history is shaping up to be the most accurate history we have of the ancient world. Once considered mythology, more and more
evidence is now piling up showing us that it is actual real history. The places mentioned, the people who lived, the dynasties, the descriptions of
engineering and architecture all have now been corroborated with archaeological evidence. In other words events like the great Mahabharata war,
describing wondrous things like aeroplanes, robots, WMD, really happened.
If all that is true then it means the allusions to machines are most likely true too. The ancients must have had machines otherwise they would not
allude to them so extensively across their whole corpus of literature and describe various types for various purposes. The fact is they even have a
word for machine “Yantra” how could they have a word for something that does not exist?
The 12th century text Samararigana-sutradha(SS) is an encyclopaedic Sanskrit text on engineering and construction compiled by the king Bhoja using
sources going back into antiquity. It also has a whole chapters on machines. It describes various kinds of machines
Flying machines, known as “Vimanas” are the most widely referenced and several types of Vimanas are described. The SS describes one particular
1) It was made of light wood- at least conceptually it was something light so as to fly. 2) It had a mercury-containing device in its “belly” and
fire and at the rear end. 3) Its body was well-welded (or firmly joined) and had two wings and resembled a large bird. 4) Repeatedly the king says it
runs by the “power” of mercury, which is described as contained in four firm pots/vessels. These are heated by a slow fire from an iron heating
vessel. “Powered by mercury it roars into the sky”.
Weapon machines include machines that can fire at multiple targets, fire multiple missiles, seek out and destroy targets and weapons of mass
Leisure and practical machines: These include robots, automatic doors, computational devices:
1) the vAri-yantra running on water flow, 2) yantras for creating wonders like showing fire in water 3) “Robotic” parrot, elephant and men and
women act together and automatic beating of drums. 4 )A remote controlled door-keeper for the night who blocks thieves. 5) A mechanical lift for
raising objects 6) Siege machines for defending forts and robotic door guards.
There are many descriptions of quite believable automata that were actually constructed and used in the palaces of wealthy kings. These include:
singing and dancing birds, a dancing elephant, elaborate chronometers with moving ivory figures and an astronomical instrument showing the movements
of the planets.
Here is a description taken from the twelfth-century Samararigana-sutradha-ra:
Male and female figures are designed for various kinds of auto- matic service. Each part of these figures is made and fitted separately, with holes
and pins, so that thighs, eyes, neck, hand, wrist, forearm and fingers can act according to need. The material used is mainly wood, but a leather
cover is given to complete the im- pression of a human being. The movements are managed by the system of poles, pins and strings attached to rods
controlling each limb. Looking into a mirror, playing a lute and stretching out the hand to touch, give pan, sprinkle water and make obeisance are the
acts done by these figures.
The SS also describes a computational device is used to calculate the motions of planets and eclipses, the sUryAdi-graha-gati-pradarshana-paraM
One cannot wilfully ignore such detailed descriptions of these various machines that are purported to have definitely existed. Although all these
Yantras or machines have now been lost to antiquity, we have been able to recover one of them, the computational device used to calculate the motion
of planets and eclipses:
The device is remarkable for the level of miniaturization and for the complexity of its parts, which is comparable to that of 18th century clocks.
It has over 30 gears, although Michael Wright (see below) has suggested as many as 72 gears, with teeth formed through equilateral triangles. When a
date was entered via a crank (now lost), the mechanism calculated the position of the Sun, Moon, or other astronomical information such as the
location of other planets. Since the purpose was to position astronomical bodies with respect to the celestial sphere, with reference to the
observer's position on the surface of the earth, the device was based on the geocentric model.
Heron of Alexandra is another source from where we find that mechanical engineering of the ancients was very advanced:
Hero described construction of the aeolipile (a version of which is known as Hero's engine) which was a rocket-like reaction engine and the
first-recorded steam engine (although Vitruvius mentioned the aeolipile in De Architectura some 100 years earlier than Hero). It was created almost
two millennia before the industrial revolution. Another engine used air from a closed chamber heated by an altar fire to displace water from a sealed
vessel; the water was collected and its weight, pulling on a rope, opened temple doors. Some historians have conflated the two inventions to
assert that the aeolipile was capable of useful work.
Therefore it would seem the ancients not only just had advanced ideas, they had advanced technology as well. This post presents the clearest proof of
it. I will add further, by combining the research in this thread with the research in my other threads(India: advanced superpower) that it is very
clear 10,000 years ago civilisation was at modern levels of science and technology. It is also clear that some very deadly cataclysm has taken place
which destroyed this hi-tech civilisation on this planet resulting in the loss of that global civilisation.
[edit on 10-1-2010 by Indigo_Child]