div दिव्

Definition: ‘Sky.’ The world as a whole is regarded as divided into the three domains of ‘earth/ ‘air’ or ‘atmosphere,’ and ‘heaven’ or ‘sky’ (div) or alternatively into ‘heaven and earth’ (dyāvā-prthivī), which two are then considered as com­prising the universe, the atmosphere being included in the sky. Lightning, wind, and rain belong to the atmosphere, solar and The shape of the earth is compared with a wheel in the Rigveda, and is expressly called * circular ’ (pari-mandala) in the Satapatha Brāhmana. When earth is conjoined with heaven, the two are conceived as great bowls (camvā) turned towards each other. In the Aitareya Aranyaka the two are regarded as halves of an egg. The distance of heaven from the earth is given by the Atharvaveda as a thousand days’ journey for the sun-bird, by the Aitareya Brāhmana as a thousand days’ journey for a horse, while the Pañcavimśa Brāhmana whimsically estimates the distance as equivalent to a thousand cows standing one on the top of the other.According to Zimmer, the Vedic poets conceived the atmosphere to be above the earth in its upper division only, but below it in its lower stratum. The evidence, however, for the latter assumption is quite insufficient. The theory of the Aitareya Brāhmana is that the sun merely reverses its bright side at night, turning its light on the stars and the moon while it retraverses its course to the east; and it has been shown that this is probably the doctrine of the Rigveda also. See also Sūrya and Candramās. For the Vedic knowledge of the planets, see Graha. There is no geographical division of the earth in Vedic literature. The Jaiminīya Upanisad Brāhmana states that the centre of the earth is a span north of the Plaksa Prāsravanā, and that the centre of the sky is the constellation of the seven Esis, the Great Bear. For the quarters, see Diś.


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