Sanskrit and Mathematics - Some amazing Facts

Written by Sanskrit Shlokas on 19 February 2018

These are samples of what we can find in the huge ocean of knowledge that Sanskrit scriptures are.

यथा शिखा मयूराणां, नागानां मणयो यथा । 

तद् वद् वेदाङ्गशास्त्राणां गणितं मूर्धनि स्थितम् ॥

Like the crest of the peacock, like the gem on the head of a snake, so is mathematics at the head of all knowledge.

Vedanga Jyotisha explains the importance of Mathematics among the sciences.


ॐ पूर्णमदः पूर्णमिदं पूर्णात्पुर्णमुदच्यते

पूर्णस्य पूर्णमादाय पूर्णमेवावशिष्यते ॥

If we remove infinity from infinity what remains is still infinity

Where does Mathematics come in here, you may ask. Well what is the only known number which will produce itself as the result on subtracting itself from its value? Zero!!

This talks about zero and its application in Mathematics and how it's symbol is utilised.

This shloka relates to it perfectly.

 दीर्घचतुरश्रस्याक्ष्णया रज्जु: पार्श्र्वमानी तिर्यग् मानी च यत् पृथग् भूते कुरूतस्तदुभयं करोति

A rope stretched along the length of the `diagonal of a rectangle

produces an area which the vertical and horizontal sides make together.

This is taken from Sulabha Sutra by Baudhayana. This particular idea came to be known later as Pythagorean Theorem.


इमा मे अग्न इष्टकाः धेनवः सन्त्वेका चदशं च शतं च सहस्रंश्चायुतश्च नीयुतश्च प्रयुतश्चार्बुदश्चन्यर्बुदश्च समुद्रश्च मध्यञ्चान्तश्च परार्धश्चैता मे अगनैष्टकाधेनवः सनत्वमुत्रामुष्मीँल्लोके

Oh! Agni (fire) let these bricks be milk-giving cows to me. There are (eka) 1, (desa) 10, (satam) 102102 (sahasram) 103103, (ayutma) 104104, (niyutam) 105105, (prayutam) 106106, (arbudam) 107,107,(nyarbu­dam) 108108, (antyam) 109109, (madhyam) 10^10, (paradham) 10^11, bricks. Let these be milch kines in this world and the other world too.

Excerpts from a hymn of Shukla Yajurveda, these verses indicate that the ancient Indians knew calculations of numbers upto 10 to the power of 11 and had even specific names for the decimal places.