India is the one of the oldest place where curiosity to know the universe started. Indian Astronomy started around 2000 B.C. Khagola-Shastra was the name given to the Indian astronomy. Word Khagola was originated from the famous astronomical universe of Nalanda.
Indian Astronomy became an established tradition by the 1st millennium BCE, when Jyotisa Vedanga and other supplementary branches of learning called Vedanga began to take place. This time onwards, number of Indian astronomers studied various phenomenon of astronomical science. Number of techniques and instruments were developed keeping the various culture in mind. These techniques and instrument were used in calendric studies.
Indian Astronomy reflects the intertwine of various religions in initial ages. The first texture mention of Indian astronomical concept comes from the Vedas. The cardinal directions of Indian Astronomy are found in the Sulbasutra (1st millennium BCE), a discourse containing mathematical applications used for alter construction. Mathematics and astronomical instruments were used widely to calculate time after sunlight, daylight period, computation of sun rise, computation of sunset, and general measurement of time.
Jyotisa Vedanga astronomy was on top between the 6th and 4th centuries BCE. The Pancasiddantika (Varahimira, 505 CE) approximates the method for fortitude of the meridian direction from any three positions of the shadow using Gnomon. The Indian religious texts also shows the information about he astronomical observation were used during the ritual.
Hindu kept a pancanga for calculation of tithi ( date), vara ( weekday), naksatra (asterism) and karan (half lunar day) for social and religious events that are closely related to Indian Astrology. Hindu calendar also shows that a year was divided on the basis of religious rituals and seasons (Ritu).
Aryabhata wrote one of the most important books of Indian Astronomy called Aryabhatasiddhanta. The facts of this book were also used in works of Varahimira, Bhaskara I, Brahmagupta and other astronomers. Indian Astronomy is one of the famous astronomical science which is being used for its most interesting aspects of study and practice.
Dharmendra Kumar (DMR)
DMR’S ASTRONOMY CLUB