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Saturday, 28 January 2012

The Saraswati: River or Goddess of Knowledge ,Where lies the mystery

 Saraswati Goddess or River in Animated Clips

3D Picture of Goddess Saraswati on the Mythical Vedic River named Saraswati . Lord Brahma creator of four Veda along the great sacred river (Saraswati) side . Created by Manash Kundu

Goddess Saraswati :

One of The major Goddess of Hindu religion. Goddess Saraswati is known as a goddess of education, learning atrs and Music. Devi Saraswati therefore prayed in every major Educational Institutions of Bengal. Goddess Saraswati also known as the Wife of Brahma. In some parts of India Like West Bengal ,Bihar and Orrisa Devi Saraswati is consider as daughter of Lord Shiva and Devi Parvati along with her sister  Devi Laxmi. Devi Saraswati is comparable with Roman Goddess Venus.

The main Transportation of Devi Saraswati is White Swan.Devi Saraswati is sit on the Lotus with her musical string instrument (Known as Veena) . Devi Saraswati also Known as Veena-Pani (Holding Musical Instrument Veena on  Hand (Pani = Hand)).

River Saraswati or Sarasvati :
Climatic change and geotectonic movements have led to migration and abandonment of several rivers and drainage systems. Some of them are ‘lost’ because of the overburden of silt. But several evidences left by them usually help in proving the existence of a geomorphic feature in a particular location, which attract the attention of the interested people to discover the past. In India, the river Saraswati reflects such a fascinating history, supported by geological, hydrological and archaeological evidences as well as the records of the most modern tools, such as remote sensing and GIS. With the aid of remote sensing through orbiting satellites, the mystery of the river is more or less solved.

 satellite view of the Sarasvati River basin running from the Himalayan Mountains to the west coast of India.

Flow of River Saraswati

Geological record indicates that during the late Pleistocene glaciation, the water of the Himalayas was frozen and that in the place of rivers, there were only glaciers, masses of solid ice. When the climate became warmer, the glaciers began to break up and the frozen water held by them surged forth in great floods, inundating the alluvial plains in front of the mountains. The melting of glaciers has also been referred in Rig Vedic literature, in mythological terms. It was the first interglacial period in Holocene marking the break-up of glaciers and release of the pent-up waters that flowed out in seven mighty river channels referred as the ‘Sapta Sindhu’ in the Rig Veda, traced from east to west. The ‘Sapta Sindhu’ refers to the rivers Saraswati, Satadru (Sutlej), Vipasa (Beas), Asikni (Chenab), Parosni (Ravi), Vitasta (Jhelum) and Sindhu (Indus). Among these, the Saraswati and the Sindhu were major rivers that flowed from the mountains right up to the sea. The hymns in praise of the Saraswati are probably some of the oldest, composed more than 8000 years ago. 

For 2000 years, between 6000 and 4000 B.C., the Saraswati flowed as a great river. R. D. Oldham (1886) was the first geologist who argued logically pointing to the great changes in the drainage pattern of the rivers of Punjab and western Rajasthan converting a once fertile region into a desert. According to geological and glaciological studies, the Saraswati was supposed to have originated in Bandapunch massif (Saraswati-Rupin glacier confluence at Naitwar in western Garhwal). 

The river, which had originated from Kapal tirith in the Himalayas in the west of Kailash, was flowing southward to Mansarovar and then taking a turn towards west. Even today the Saraswati flows from the south of Mana pass which meets river Alaknanda, 3 km away in the south of Mana village. Descending through Adibadri, Bhavanipur and Balchapur in the foothills to the plains, the river took roughly a southwesterly course, passing through the plains of Punjab, Haryana, Rajasthan, Gujarat and finally it is believed to have debounched into the ancient Arabian Sea at the Great Rann of Kutch. In this long journey, the Saraswati is believed to have had three tributaries, Shatadru (Sutlej) originating from Mount Kailas, Drishadvati from Siwalik Hills and the old Yamuna. They flowed together along a channel, presently known as the Ghaggar River, which is known as Hakra River in Rajasthan and Nara in Sindh. Some experts consider these two rivers as a single river whereas others consider the upper course of the Saraswati as Ghaggar and the lower course as the Hakra River, while some others call the Saraswati of the weak and declining stage as the Ghaggar.

Ancient courses of Saraswati river in Bahawalpur province (Cholistan desert)

The river was obliterated within a short span, in the Quarternary period of the Cenozoic era, through a combination of destructive catastrophic events. The decline of the river appears to have commenced between 5000 and 3000 B.C., probably precipitated by a major tectonic event in the Siwalik Hills of Sirmur region. Geological studies reveal that the massive landslides and avalanches were caused by destabilising tectonic events which occurred around the beginning of Pleistocene, about 1.7 million years ago in the entire Siwalik domain, extending from Potwar in Pakistan to Assam in India. Those disturbances, linked to uplift of the Himalayas, continued intermittently. Presumably, one of these events must have severed the glacier connection and cut off the supply of melt water from the glacier to this river; as a result, the Saraswati became non-perennial and dependent on monsoon rains. The diversion of the river water through separation of its tributaries led to the conversion of the river as disconnected lakes and pools; ultimately it was reduced to a dry channel bed. Therefore, the river Saraswati has not disappeared but only dried up in some stretches.

It is found that the course of the river Saraswati in the states of Punjab, Haryana and Rajasthan is clearly highlighted in the LANDSAT imagery by the vegetation cover thriving on the rich residual loamy soil along its earlier course. Digital enhancement studies of IRS-1C data (1995), combined with RADAR imagery from European Remote Sensing satellites ERS 1/2, identified subsurface features and recognised the palaeochannels beneath the sands of the Thar Desert. A study of NRSA, based on satellite derived data, has revealed no palaeochannel link between the Indus and the Saraswati, confirming that the two were independent rivers; also, the three palaeochannels, south of Ambala, seen to swerve westwards to join the ancient bed of the Ghaggar, are inferred to be the tributaries of Saraswati/Ghaggar, and one among them, probably Drishadvati. Digital enhancement techniques using high resolution LISS-III data of IRS-1C satellite, together with pyramidal processing, identified two palaeochannels trending NE-SW in Jaisalmer district of Rajasthan, which are presumed to be the lost river Saraswati. In a study, NRSA used Indian Remote Sensing Satellite (IRS-P3) Wide Field Sensor (WiFS) data covering the Indus river system to study the palaeodrainage in northwestern India. The image elements such as tone, colour, texture, pattern, association of WiFS and SIR-C/X-SAR images helped to derive information on current as well as palaeodrainage. WiFS image reveals very faint trace of the river Saraswati/Ghaggar while in the SIR-C/X-SAR image, the connectivity of the palaeochannel could be easily established due to the presence of dark irregular shaped features associated with wetness. 

Missing of a prominent river from the map is not a mystery; it is quite natural as the natural phenomena evolve through environmental changes. A part of the river Saraswati till now exists as Ghaggar in Haryana, the rest of it has disappeared in the fringes of the Marusthali or the Thar Desert. Bhabha Atomic Research Centre, Mumbai has made a breakthrough in its research for the existence and probable location of the mythical Saraswati river. The Rajasthan Ground Water Department undertook the task to ‘unearth’ the river with the collaboration of BARC and Physical Research Laboratory, Ahmedabad (a wing of ISRO) in 1998. If the effort is successful, the people living in the desert belt of Rajasthan will be hopefully supplied more than 3500 year old water derived from palaeo-channels, believed to be the mythical Saraswati.  
There are more than 2,500 Archaeological sites, two-thirds of which are along the recently discovered dried up Sarasvati River bed. These sites show a cultural continuity with the Vedic literature from the early Harrapan civilization up to the present day India

According to Vedic Text Saraswati was the one of the most important river at vedic age. Vedic age was truly prosper into it peak beside the bank of this Saraswati River and other Six rivers (These seven river alltogether known as "Sapta Sindhu" in Rig Veda. Saraswati along with Sindhu were the two major rivers that flows from the mountains right up to the sea. The oldest hymns in praise of river Saraswati in Rig Veda probably more than 8000 years old.

The decline of the river appears to have commenced between 5000 and 3000 B.C., probably precipitated by a major tectonic event in the Siwalik Hills of Sirmur region. During that period Saraswati river suddenly lost its flow and dried into great desert of modern Rajasthan. Therefore painter Ravi Verma painted a river as Devi Saraswati`s background.

Saraswati sits on the bank of a river, holds a book and beads, and plays music on Veena, as a peacock looks on, in a painting by Raja Ravi Varma

Devi Saraswati by Ravi Verma

The destruction of important river:  which also one of the main cause of End of Vedic Age, River Saraswati emerge as Devi Saraswati during the post Vedic Age. Saraswati river was the symbol of richness, prosperity of vedic culture and related with 4 veda (Most important books of Ancient Vedic wisdom). Beside this important river it was thought that Lord Brahma educated Sapt Rishis (Seven Sages) with the knowledge of Vedas in the form of Sanskrit poems (stotras). Therefore Devi Saraswati also the Goddess of Wisdom, Knowledge and all the art.

3D Picture of Goddess Saraswati on the Mythical Vedic River named Saraswati . Lord Brahma creator of four Veda along the great sacred river (Saraswati) side . Created by Manash Kundu

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