Antiquity, Vedic Cosmology & Heresy

by Lori Tompkins 2003

(Published as ‘Here’s to Heresy’ in Atlantis Rising magazine November/December 2003 Issue 42)

I am enjoying reading my second issue of Atlantis Rising, especially John Antony West's "Open Letter to Archaeology," "Notes from Michael A. Cremo: Investigations into the Antiquity of the Ranganatha Temple in South India", and "The New Heretic", comments by Dr. Eugene F. Mallove.

As I was reading Mr. Cremo's comments about extreme human antiquity, the Vedas, and his hope of finding the true age of the Ranganatha temple of Tamil Nadu, India, I wondered why he did not mention the ancient ruins found off the coast of Mahabalipuram in Tamil Nadu, Southern India that were explored by a large team led by a British author and television presenter Graham Hancock in Spring of 2002. Apparently some scientists estimated that the ancient ruins explored there could be some 11,000 years old. I read of this discovery while I was in Tamil Nadu this past fall, visiting a Vedic cosmologist.

I was intrigued when Cremo described the Vedic cosmological calendar and the cycles of the yugas. He wrote, "There are four yugas in each cycle: a Satya Yuga, a Dwapara Yuga, a Treta Yuga, and a Kali Yuga. A cycle of four yugas lasts 4,320,000 years ... According to the traditional calendar, we are now in the Kali Yuga of the current yuga cycle."

The Vedic Cosmologist I visited, Patrizia Norelli-Bachelet, has a much different seeing/ understanding of the Yugas – a seeing that actually puts her in the "Heretic" category right along with Dr. Mallove, her field being Vedic Cosmology rather than Science. Ms. Bachelet as well as Dr. Mallove has much to offer towards the advancement of our civilization, and specifically in helping mankind understand the flow of Evolution in Time.

"The figures of the Yugas (Ages)," Ms. Norelli-Bachelet writes her book The Gnostic Circle,* "are not in actual fact years, as is commonly believed, but rather to seconds of degrees of celestial longitude."

She goes on to explain that the Kaliyuga is a measurement that comprises, in terms of the Precession of the Equinoxes, four astrological signs of 2,160 years each or 8640 years. "Kaliyuga is only the key. In effect it does not exist, or, as was stated in ["The Mysterious Yugas"**] 'We are always in a Kaliyuga.' . . . In truth mankind is in the 'dark' simply by not realizing that there is no such thing as a Kaliyuga, and that in effect the Age of Darkness is only determined by an ignorance of Truth, which can come about in any age."

According to Ms. Norelli-Bachelet, the Kaliyuga is a basic measurement, used to measure out, in three parts, a "Great Year" consisting of three passages through the entire Zodiac by the Precession of the Equinoxes, meaning passage through 36 Ages of 2160 years each, i.e. 77,760 years. A Dwaparayuga, being twice a kaliyuga, would then be 17,280 years, a Tretayuga - 25,920 years and a Satyauga - 34,560 years. By her calculations, our current civilization is 77 years into the 2160 year Age of Aquarius, and we have been in a Satyayuga for over 10,000 years (since the Precession of the Equinoxes crossed 0 degrees Leo).

She also shows how the Tropical zodiac now commonly used by Western astrologists was known to ancient rishis – the authors of the Rig Veda – thousands of years ago, and that the famous 'three strides of Vishnu' said to measure out the Universe are the three fixed signs Leo, Taurus and Aquarius, in that order, which is the precessional movement.

Her discoveries involve the bedrock of Hindu Culture and, though controversial, have received wide exposure in Indian publications including The Hindu (9.7.02) , The New Indian Express (3.6.01), Prakash Bhavan (4.03). India is a country used to heretics and cults of every hue – one seems to have more freedom to express heretical ideas there than any place else in the world.

I feel the researchers in Atlantis Rising should be made aware of the information Ms. Norelli-Bachelet brings to light, because it will turn upside down the theories of even the most prominent 'Vedic Astrologers'. According to Ms. Norelli-Bachelet, there is a misnomer – all those who go by the title 'Vedic Astrologer' should be called 'Post Vedic' since their system evolved almost a thousand years after the Rig Veda was penned. In actuality, she writes, they are non-Vedic.

I hope that "heretic" archeologists, scientists, astrologers and cosmologists begin to find their way to her avant-guard work (despite the fact, or especially because, it is heretical in modern Vedic Studies) because it seems to me crucial information and support for the whole process of de-construction of old false Ideas (whether Scientific or Spiritual) of who we are, who we have been, and what we might be evolving towards, and the process of aligning with a greater Truth of Being.

* Aeon Books, Coreki Corporation, First Edition © 1975 PNB

**An article by Ms. Bachelet, published by Mother India, December 1972,
Pondicherry India.