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Ancient India Notes

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  • 1. Ancient IndiaTextbook pages 44-49,60-71,189-192.
  • 2. Importance of Geography:--The first Indian Civilization developed in the Indus River Valley.--Mountains to the North of India provided protection frominvaders. The most famous of these mountain ranges are theHimalayas.Rivers: --The Ganges River flows Southeast into the Bay of Bengal --The Indus River flows Southwest into the Arabian Sea.Climate: Monsoons winds that mark the seasons in India. Thewarm southwest Monsoon brings warm moisture and rain up fromthe Indian Ocean. This rain is very important to the crops. Toomuch or too little rain can mean a bad/ruined crop. Hot temperatures  Along the coast there are milder temps.On the plains summer temperatures can reach 120 degrees F.
  • 3. Harappan Civilization 2500-1500BC. Cities Harappaand Mohenjo DaroLarge and carefully planned out cities:--Wide streets crossed at right angles--Water system with public baths and brick sewers--Some homes had bathrooms and garbage chutes.--No temples or shrines.-- Seaports (export gold, copper, timber, ivory, cotton,turquoise)Each city had a strong central fortress: Citadel--Store houses for grain. Enough to feed 35,000 people Scared of invaders or ruined crops from monsoons
  • 4. http://www.harappa.com/ • Fertile Farmland • --Cotton, wheat, barley, and rice. • --Raised cattle, sheep, pigs, and goats. • --Canals and ditches to irrigate their fields. • --Surplus crops for storage and trade. • Language: Pictographs. Scholars are unable to read them. • Unknown reason for disappearing: • Indus River changes course because of flood? Earthquake?
  • 5. Indo-Aryan Migrants1750BC tribes of Indo-European peoples cross the Hindu Kush Mountains.Came from north of the Black and Caspian Seas = People are Indo-AryansIndo-Aryans were skilled warriors (archers/charioteers)--nomadic sheep and cattle herders.Travel into the Indus River Valley seeking the rich pasturelands. Strong warriors are able to conquer all of northern India.1500BC – 1000BC Vedic AgeVedas – Indo-Aryans’ great work of religious literature.--memorized and told to the younger generations--developed writing and recorded the Vedas. Language called Sanskrit.
  • 6. Religion--gods of nature (earth, fire, light, rain, sky, sun, and water)--Vedas also mention one supreme god--no temples, ceremonies held in open spaces--process of ceremonies very particular.Brahmins special priest who knew the proper forms and rules.Society--settle in villages, continue herding, start planting--Food (rice, sugarcane, leafy vegetables, gourds, peas, beans, lentils)--settle in small independent territories--Trade/Bartering until about 500BC, since coins were not widely used
  • 7. --each territory ruled by a different Raja assisted by a royalcouncilRaja acted as military leader, lawmaker, and judge--sometimes territories would fight, most often remained atpeace--the idea of sacrifice was strongly emphasized in society--When Indo-Aryans came into the Indus River Valley thesocial classes became more rigid. Social orders or classeswere created. Strict rules about marriage where observed.* Large Mountain Ranges in India separated different groupsof people, making cultural diffusion slow and difficult
  • 8. Harappan Society vs. Indo-Aryan SocietyDark skinned Light skinned INDUSSettled Nomadic/Migrantscommunity RIVER Vedas-evidence ofNo information on VALLEY religious beliefreligious beliefs SanskritPictographs
  • 9. Religion in India pg. 60-65700BC Indian Religious thinkers begin questioning the Brahmins.Thinkers travel around telling stories to help explain the Vedas.Stories- tales of heroes and great events in history or religion retold for generations. Epics  stories put into long poems. The Upanishads are the Epics of the Vedas. (1) Bhagavad Gita tells of great battle in N. India(2) Ramayana most famous in Hindu scriptures, tells story of Rama and wife Sita (man/woman)
  • 10. Caste System  Broken down into 4 Varnas or social classes*Caste system is abolished today.BUT some places in India itis still strongly practiced.
  • 11. Hinduism pg. 66-68--In everything there is a divine Essence called Brahman. Individual Essence is called self or Atman. These essences are one and the same.--Things in the universe are the same essence of God. Unity of God and creation = Monism--Only can gain salvation if you reflect and recognize the illusion of the world =Maya--This can take many lifetimes to achieve Nirvana  when the souls unites with creation / perfect peace. *Also called Moksha in Hinduism.-- Reincarnation – souls will be reborn into a new being (human/animal)--Dharma moral duty in life so soul can make it to/advance in next lifetime--Karma  good/bad force created by actions
  • 12. Aspects of Creation  Monism = creation + god Brahma  creator Vishnu  preserver Siva  DestroyerReligious PracticeCaste System was practicedYoga  mental/physical. Bring body + mind togetherFestival  ceremonies, rituals, music, dance, food. Help bring in the seasonsCows  sacred animal. Pull plows, milk, butter. Protected by law.
  • 13. Buddhism pg. 68-71 -N.India 563BCE. Founder of Buddhism  Siddhartha Gautama – spoiled, royal boy. -At 29yr. Goes out into the world shocked to find disease, poverty, fear, and ordinary life -Vows to discover the reason for human suffering.-Great Renunciation leave everything behind in search oftruth and meaning (tries yoga, meditation, fasting)-After 6yr. Of searching one day meditating under a tree hefeels he has come to know the truth that forms the basis oflife.-In that moment he became the Buddha  “The Enlightened One”
  • 14. Beliefs-Reincarnation  yes Actions  good/bad rewarded/punished-Denied importance to Caste System-Anyone (any caste) could reach Nirvana -Salvation  know and follow the Four Noble Truths1- All Human Life involves suffering and sorrow2- Desire for a Life of pleasure and material gaincauses suffering and sorrow3- Renouncing desire, frees people from sufferingand helps the soul reach Nirvana4- Eight Fold Path leads to renunciation/denial ofdesire and attainment of Nirvana
  • 15. Mahayan Buddhism Thoravada Buddhism Buddha = Buddha = Buddha’s Savior = God teachings Teacher + and beliefs Spiritual Leader
  • 16. Eight Fold PathRight Views – seeing life as it really isRight Intentions – living a life of good will, striving toward perfectionRight Speech – avoid lies and gossipRight Action – trying to be law abiding and honestRight Concentration – directing the mind in meditationRight Living – avoiding work that harms othersRight Effort – seeking to prevent evilRight Mindfulness – constant awareness of one’s selfBuddhism gains followers after Buddha’s death. Religionspreads.Brahmins  strongly opposed Buddhism
  • 17. Buddha
  • 18. Happy BuddhaSwallows pride,suffering,anger…
  • 19. Buddhist Prayers at Monastery
  • 20. Ancient Indian Dynasties and Empire pg. 189-1921 – Mauryan Empire – 150+years, `320BCE Chandragupta Maurya – powerful adventurer-built grand palace on Ganges River-Army of 600,000 soldiers (chariots and elephants)-conquered N.India up to Hindu Kush-Standardized weights and measures-Feared enemies  slept in different rooms Asoka – Chandraqupta’s Grandson ~270BCE-Bloody wars to increase Empire’s size-conquers all India except S.tip of the subcontinent-Becomes Buddhist. Orders stop to killing-Sends missionaries to spread Buddhism-Gives religious freedom-Trade Routes  rest houses, tree for shade-184 BCE – End of the Empire
  • 21. 2 – Gupta Empire – 300s CE/AD Gupta family gains power Chandra Gupta I – 320 CE-Expands Empire (conquest and intermarriage)-400 CE Empire expands from Bay of Bengal to Arabian Sea-Favored Hinduism – supported Buddhism-Early Years + “Golden Age”-Indian civilization flourished-Society prospered, arts increased (drama) Chandra Gupta II (374-415 CE) Skanda Gupta – Last Ruler, Empire Ends 550 CE/AD
  • 22. Ancient Indian Life and Culture pg. 193-197Society- Raja-controlled land and collected taxes.Most people barelygot by.-Women  -obey males - cannot read the Vedas -Polygamy – men could have more than 1 wife -Suttee – widows committed suicideby jumping/throwing themselves onto husbands funeral pyres.Education – Advanced in Ancient India.- higher castes received formal education
  • 23. -Nalanda – Buddhist University-Students studied: Vedas, literature,math, science, astronomy, gov’t,warfare, logic, grammar, and medicineMathematics-understood abstract and negative #s, concept of zero +infinity = ALGEBRA-understood rotation of earth, sun/moon eclipses and 7planetsMedicine – very advanced-understood importance of the spinal chord-surgery  bone setting + plastic surgery-Inoculation  vaccination, giving a weakened disease toa person to build up anti-bodies for the disease. Diseaseprevention and control