Kalasamuddesha or reckoning of time
Jaldhar H. Vyas
jaldhar at BRAINCELLS.COM
Wed Oct 30 23:30:42 CST 2002
[Was Re: Indra and Vrtra]
On Tue, 29 Oct 2002, Shrinivas Gadkari wrote:
> I hope this thread has not crossed the acceptable limits regarding the
> scope of this list.
I don't think so. Jyotish is a vedanga.
> I have been wanting to understand the yuga durations for quite some time
> however the data available is very confusing.
I concur with the warning not to trust random websites. This subject is
covered in all the Puranas. Here is the account in Bhagavata Purana 3rd
skandha, chapter 11.
This is the reckoning of time amongst men:
1 paramaNu = 0.000040 seconds
2 paramaNu = 1 aNu (0.000079 seconds)
3 aNu = 1 traseraNu (0.000157 seconds)
3 traseraNu = 1 truTi (0.000471 seconds)
100 truTi = 1 vedha (0.04741 seconds)
3 vedha = 1 lava (0.142 seconds)
3 lava = 1 nimeSha (0.427 seconds)
3 nimeSha = 1 kshaNa (1.28 seconds)
5 kshaNa = 1 kashTA (6.4 seconds)
15 kashTA = 1 laghu (96 seconds)
15 laghu = 1 ghaDi or naDi (24 minutes)
2 ghaDi = 1 muhurta (48 minutes)
7 or 8 ghadis = 1 prahara (168-192 minutes)
8 prahara = 1 divasa (1 day) 
1 divasa = approximately 1 tithi. 
15 tithi = 1 paksha (15 days)
2 paksha = 1 masa (1 month) 
2 masa = 1 rtu (season)
3 rtus = 1 ayana (half-year) 
6 rtu = 1 varsha (1 year) 
This is the reckoning of time amonst the pitrs.
1 human masa = 1 day of the pitrs
30 days of the pitrs = 1 month of the pitras (= 2.5 human years)
12 months of the pitrs = 1 year of the pitrs (= 30 human years)
The lifespan of the pitrs is 100 years of the pitrs (= 3000 human years)
This is the reckoning of time amonst the Devas.
1 human year = 1 day of the Devas.
30 days of the Devas = 1 month of the Devas. (= 30 human years)
12 months of the Devas = 1 year of the Devas (= 360 human years)
The lifespan of the Devas is 100 years of the Devas (= 36,000 human years)
This is the reckoning of time for Brahma.
12,000 years of the Devas = 1 day of Brahma (432,000,000 human years)
this day is divided into 1000 parts called charaNas
The charaNas are divided as follows:
4 charaNas = satya yuga (1,728,000 human years) then
3 charaNas = treta yuga (1,296,000 human years)
2 charaNas = dvApara yuga (864,000 human years)
1 charaNa = kali yuga (432,000 human years)
then the cycle repeats itself so altogether there are 100 cycles of yugas
in one day of Brahma
Each day of Brahma is divided into periods called Manvantaras which are
ruled over by a Manu.
30 days of Brahma = 1 month of Brahma (12,960,000,000 human years)
12 months of Brahma = 1 year of Brahma (155,520,000,000 human years)
25 years of Brahma = 1 kalpa (3,888,000,000,000 human years)
2 kalpas = 1 parardha (7,776,000,000,000 human years) 
2 parardhas = 100 years of Brahma
= the lifespan of Brahma (15,552,000,000,000 human years)
We are currently in the 28th kaliyuga of the first day of the 1st year of
the shvetavaraha kalpa of the second parardha of Brahma in the reign of
the 7th Manu, Manu Vaivasvata as we recite every day in the samkalpa.
Yet even the vastest measure of time is but a moment to Bhagavan. Yet He
is more subtle than even the most tiny measure of time.
 of the 8 praharas in a day, 4 have seven ghadis and 4 have 8 to make
the required 60.
 A divasa is a solar day while a tithi is a lunar day which is slightly
shorter. So occasionaly a tithi has to be doubled (vrddha) or omitted
(kshaya) to keep in sync.
 A paksha represents the waxing or waning phase of the moon.
 rtu and ayana are solar measures, the time for the sun to transit two
signs of the zodiac, and the interval between equinoxes respecitively.
 As a lunar year is shorter than a solar year, even with vrddha and
kshaya tithis they go out of sync. So occasionally a "leap" (adhika) masa
has to be added.
 The 4 kalpas in the life of Brahma are: BrAhma, padma, ShvetavAraha,
and ? (the Bhagavata doesn't say.)
Jaldhar H. Vyas <jaldhar at braincells.com>
It's a girl! See the pictures - http://www.braincells.com/shailaja/
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