Atanu Dey talks about how there is a convergence between modern cosmology and ancient Hindu wisdom:
The ancients in India dreamt all that stuff up, of course. And the physicists of today are dreaming more such stuff. And from time to time, there are surprising convergences between the two.
He quotes Carl Sagan, explaining the one episode of COSMOS focussed on India,
As far as I know [India’s] is the only ancient religious tradition on the Earth which talks about the right time-scale. We want to get across the concept of the right time-scale, and to show that it is not unnatural.
In the West, people have the sense that what is natural is for the universe to be a few thousand years old, and that billions is indwelling, and no one can understand it. The Hindu concept is very clear. Here is a great world culture which has always talked about billions of years.
Finally, the many billion year time-scale of Hindu cosmology is not the entire history of the universe, but just the day and night of Brahma, and there is the idea of an infinite cycle of births and deaths and an infinite number of universes, each with its own gods.
And this is a very grand idea. Whether it is true or not, is not yet clear. But it makes the pulse quicken, and we thought it was a good way to approach the subject.
I keep coming across such claims and from very respected people. About how Maharshi Kanad talked about atoms and molecules well before the modern science. About how Ayurveda had surgergical procedures well before modern medicine and so on. I don't doubt all this. In fact, I am pretty sure these claims are true.
But sometimes I wonder if Hindu (ancient Indian) philosophy is more like a broken clock. Getting it right exactly twice a day alright but its hands not moving at all!
Maybe we are all responsible for not making it move, busy as we are admiring its ancient wisdom. We have made it a vintage piece in a museum. Marvelous but dead!