Kali Yuga 2
250 AD to 500 AD
Complete ignorance of the Vedas
250 AD onwards
- Mbh.12.231:- In the Kali age, all the Vedas become so scarce that they may not be even seen by men.
- Mbh.12.259:- Like the small ponds at which the cattle drink or the shallow aqueducts along cultivated fields that dry up very soon, the eternal practices inculcated in the Smritis, falling into discontinuance, at last disappear totally in the Kali age.
- Mbh.12.266:- This is mine, This other is not his, ideas like these with respect to property will not if the wicked be not punished prevail in the Kali age
I guess the references mentioned above is self explanatory. It clearly describes the situation in Kali-2 (250 AD to 500 AD). I consider this describe the situation even beyond 500 AD since by then the Yuga-System is completely forgotten and there was no chance of thinking about a Krita-3 (500 AD to 1500 AD) or a Treta-3 (1500 AD to 2250 AD) which falls into our future.
Emergence of the Celestial Yuga Definition (4.32 million years)
250 AD to 500 AD
To compensate the disappearance of the Yuga System that prevailed during the Mahabharata era and during the subsequent Krita-2, Treta-2 Yugas, a new form of Yuga definition emerged in Kali-2 (250 AD to 500 AD). That is called the celestial Yugas. Celestial Yugas were much larger in duration as per definition than the Yugas as per the former Yuga definitions.
- Mbh.12.230:- I shall, in their order, tell thee the number of years, that are thus for different purposes computed differently in respect of the Krita, the Treta, the Dwapara, and the Kali yugas.
The variation of the definition is achieved by defining the years in Yuga calculations not as the years of men but the years of the gods:- A month of human beings is equal to a day and night of the Pitris. That division as regards the Pitris consists in this: the lighted fortnight of men is their day which is for the doing of acts; and the dark fortnight is their night for sleep. A year of human beings is equal to a day and night of the gods. The division as regards the gods consists in this: the half year for which the sun travels from the vernal to the autumnal equinox is the day of the deities, and the half year for which the sun travels from the latter to the former is their night. Thus one year of humans is considered as one day of the celestials. Subsequently a celestial year is considered as 360 celestial days or 360 years of humans!
The rest of the definition is the exact replica of Markandeya's 12,000 year long Chatur-Yuga Definition that emerged post Kurukshetra war in Kali-Yuga-1 by around 2500 BC:-
Four thousand years of the deities is the duration of the first or Krita age. The morning of that epoch consists of four hundred years and its evening is of four hundred years. The total duration, therefore, of the Krita yuga is four thousand and eight hundred years of the deities. As regards the other yugas, the duration of each gradually decreases by a quarter in respect of both the substantive period with the conjoining portion and the conjoining portion itself. Thus the duration of the Treta is three thousand years and its morning extends for three hundred years and its evening for three hundred. The duration of the Dwapara also is two thousand years, and its morning extends for two hundred years and its evening also for two hundred. The duration of the Kali yuga is one thousand years, and its morning extends for one hundred years, and its evening for one hundred.
But since the 'year' changed from 'human-year' to 'celestial-year', the duration of the Chatur-Yuga got multiplied by 360!. Thus instead of 12000 years it became 12000x360 = 4,320,000 years (4.32 million years)! The great astronomer Aryabhata (476 AD to 550 AD) who lived towards the end of Kali-Yuga-2 (or his predecessor) gave a scientific basis to this celestial Yuga definition by connecting it with the alignment of planets. As per his definition this duration (4.32 million years) was the time it takes for the alignment of Mercury, Venus, Mars, Jupiter, Saturn, Moon, the ascending (Rahu) and descending (Ketu) nodes of Moon's orbit and Sun near the star Aswini (Beta-Aries).
Emergence of larger-time-definitions (4.32 billion years)
250 AD to 500 AD
Mbh.12.230:- The learned say that these twelve thousand years of the deities constitute what is called a yuga. A thousand such yugas compose a single day of Brahman. The same is the duration of Brahman's night. With the commencement of Brahman's day the universe begins to start into life. During the period of universal dissolution the Creator sleeps, having recourse to yoga-meditation. When the period of slumber expires, He awakes. That then which is Brahman's day extends for a thousand such yugas. His nights also extends for a thousand similar yugas. They who know this are said to know the day and the night
The narration above defines a new unit of time that is 1000 celestial yugas long or 4.32 billion years and consider it as a day of Brahma. This is considered as the time universe take to evolve life forms. Modern science consider the life of universe to be 13.75 ±0.17 billion years which is three times larger than this definition. However this duration is comparable to the age of Earth (4.54 billion years) or to the age of Sun and Solar System (4.6 billion years). It is also comparable to three stages of formation of stars in the universe viz. population-3 stars (ancient stars), population-2 and population-1 stars (recent stars like sun).
The mention of the 1000 Celestial Chatur-Yugas (4.32 billion years) is repeated in the following referenced below:-
- Mbh.6.32:- They who know a day of Brahman to end after a thousand Yugas, and a night of his to terminate after a thousand Yugas are persons that know day and night
- Mbh.12.47:- At the end of a thousand Yugas, thou assumest the form of a fire with blazing flames and consumest all creatures.
- Mbh.12.207:- He performed penances for a thousand celestial Yugas
- Mbh.12.339:- At the end of a thousand Yugas I shall once more with-draw the universe into myself
Emergence of the Definition of Kalpa (17.28 billion years)
350 AD to 500 AD
Mbh.3.270:- At the close of four thousand Yugas the Earth thus became flooded with water
Mbh.12.302:- Twelve thousand years, according to the measure of the celestials, make a Yuga, four such Yugas taken a thousand times, make a Kalpa which measures one day of Brahman (12,000 x 360 x 4 x 1000 = 17.28 billion years)
Mbh.12.342:- When four thousand Yugas according to the measure of the celestials elapse, the dissolution of the universe comes.
As per the above definitions the duration of a single day of Brahma increased by four times from 4.32 billion years to 17.28 billion years (from 1000 celestial yugas to 4000 celestial yugas). This time is also defined as a Kalpa. A Kalpa is 3 billion years larger than the age of the universe now considered to be around 14 billion years.
Emergence of myths about Yugas
400 AD to 500 AD
The narrations mentioned below indicates the usual idea of the deteriorating ages. It also shows the myths about how people are born in various Yugas.
- Mbh.3.188:- In the Krita age I become white, in the Treta age I become yellow, in the Dwapara I have become red and in the Kali age I become dark in hue, I the Kali age, the proportion of immorality becometh three-fourths, a fourth only being that of morality.
- Mbh.12.206:- In Krita age offspring were begotten by flat of the will. In the age that followed, viz, Treta, children were begotten by touch alone. It was in the next age, viz, Dwapara, that the practice of sexual congress originated to prevail among men. In the Kali age men have come to marry and live in pairs.
Many people today believe that in old ages people were born by thought alone, a concept exploited well in the Puranas some of which were still evolving (in 500 AD), where we find mention of sages like Vasistha born by the fiat of will of Brahma. Similarly they believe that people can be born by touch alone like the Pandavas born by the touch of Devas like Indra on Kunti. (Coincidently the Pandavas were born in Dwapara not in Treta). As per these myths or fables sexual congress originated only in Dwapara and people started to marry and live in pairs only in Kali which is however not backed by evidence in Mahabharata or Ramayana.