In his interview with The Eastern Report, Padmashri Dr. Nicholas Kazanas busts several myths about the Aryan invasion migration theory. We reproduce his interview in two parts (Read part 1 here).
Q: We want to know what you think of the isogloss diagram proposed by HH Hock which shows how the movement of the language family has unfolded so far.
Dr. NK: Isoglosses are many and varied. There are similarities that appear in a group of languages. For example, the name of the sky god Daus appears in Greek as Zeus. It may be luck, but it appears in Hittite as Teshub and in Germanic as Teiwaz. This becomes an Isogloss, a similar element that appears in four Indo-European languages.
Na bhajati (do not pray), na khadati (do not eat) is an isogloss with many Indo-European languages. Greek does not have this negative. There is another negative Ma. Sanskrit has both Na and Ma.
So, with isoglosses, you have an idea of the oldest language and from which others have moved away because it contains all the elements that other languages have. It has vocabulary, grammar, collocations and such. Vedic is the wealthiest of the lot. It should be remembered that Rigveda only has a thousand hymns and many of these hymns are repetitive, which means that its vocabulary is not huge.
Whereas if you look at ancient Greek like Homer, Illiad and Odessey, the vocabulary is huge and it’s not repetitive at all. Yet, when it comes to isoglosses, Vedic has more isoglosses than any other language in the Indo-European family.
Q: Why don’t Western scholars notice the parallel between India and Greece in terms of language and religion?
Dr NK: Greek has changed from ancient times just like Vedic has changed from ancient Vedic, there are more classical things and the language itself has changed to Hindi, Marathi, Bengali, Punjabi and Gujarati, between others. All of these languages are derivatives of Sanskrit.
Now, someone who knows Sanskrit would recognize some words but not necessarily know the language of, say, Punjabi. The Greek has also changed, but the pronunciation has changed drastically too. We’ve lost some sounds and if you don’t know about this change, you won’t immediately recognize it. The spelling and the form of writing have also changed.
We (Greeks) have become Christians, we no longer worship Surya and no longer worship Daus and Prithvi. We worship Christ and Jehovah and we do not worship the ancient Greek pantheon. It’s over now, so you won’t find it either. The culture has changed very drastically.
Those familiar with the Vedic culture, if they come to Greece today, will not find temples dedicated to the Sun God, Sky God or Mother Goddess. They will find churches dedicated to the god father, to christ and to the saints of the greek orthodox church. That’s why they don’t notice any similarities.
Q: How do you see the notion of religion of Western writers, who say that religion originated because of the drug-induced family practices of ancient people, turns into hatred when you analyze the Rigvedic text?
Dr. Nicholas: Rigveda begins with the notion of one; he has no gender, he is not feminine, he is not masculine, he exists alone before any creation, he breathes even if there is no air. He breathes without air by his own strength. In my opinion, this means that he pushed creation aside and withdrew it. From this arises the world, arises all the gods who would create a different world, and so on.
Indians realize that everything in creation comes from this one option, so why not worship everything in creation? The tree, the stone, the sun and the sea all contain the absolute. All the gods who represent the great powers of nature are in fact manifestations of the will and the wisdom of the absolute.
The Indians are strict in philosophy they tell you that there is one and from this comes everything. When you purify your mind and heart through certain processes like yoga and meditation and through ethical and moral living, you will be purified and achieve that absolute unity everywhere. People don’t want to do that, they want to enjoy life and hoard stuff instead of getting rid of what they don’t need.
Q: A Western scholar tried to define religion and its origin. He said it came from the effect of Soma i.e. drug, while Rigveda says self-realization is important. It does not teach you to use certain substances. What do you think of this kind of distorted view by eminent scholars?
Dr. Nicholas: We are all born into different cultures. We all come from different backgrounds and grew up with certain values. Therefore, we see other cultures through the filter of our own culture.
Q: With regard to the politics of the Aryan invasion theory, why are the views of William Jones and Max Mueller accepted in academic circles even today?
Dr. Nicholas: Scientists stick with their theories, but if they are good scientists, they will drop their theories when new evidence comes out and accept the news. If they are not, they will stick to their theories. The invaders are very attached to their ideas. Names and reputations in the field of scholarship would crumble.
It’s a big change that is happening slowly, but it will take a few more years, if not decades. If the new generation of Indians study properly, there is a lot of work and evidence for them to study and change their minds.