Canto 5: The Creative ImpetusChapter 22: The Orbits of the Planets

Bhaktivedanta VedaBase: Śrīmad Bhāgavatam 5.22.8

evaḿ candramā arka-gabhastibhya upariṣṭāl lakṣa-yojanata upalabhyamāno 'rkasya saḿvatsara-bhuktiḿ pakṣābhyāḿ māsa-bhuktiḿ sapādarkṣābhyāḿ dinenaiva pakṣa-bhuktim agracārī drutatara-gamano bhuńkte


evam — thus; candramā — the moon; arka-gabhastibhyaḥ — from the rays of the sunshine; upariṣṭāt — above; lakṣa-yojanataḥ — by a measurement of 100,000 yojanas; upalabhyamānaḥ — being situated; arkasya — of the sun globe; saḿvatsara-bhuktim — the passage of one year of enjoyment; pakṣābhyām — by two fortnights; māsa-bhuktim — the passage of one month; sapāda-ṛkṣābhyām — by two and a quarter days; dinena — by a day; eva — only; pakṣa-bhuktim — the passage of a fortnight; agracārī — moving impetuously; druta-tara-gamanaḥ — passing more speedily; bhuńkte — passes through.


Above the rays of the sunshine by a distance of 100,000 yojanas [800,000 miles] is the moon, which travels at a speed faster than that of the sun. In two lunar fortnights the moon travels through the equivalent of a saḿvatsara of the sun, in two and a quarter days it passes through a month of the sun, and in one day it passes through a fortnight of the sun.


When we take into account that the moon is 100,000 yojanas, or 800,000 miles, above the rays of the sunshine, it is very surprising that the modern excursions to the moon could be possible. Since the moon is so distant, how space vehicles could go there is a doubtful mystery. Modern scientific calculations are subject to one change after another, and therefore they are uncertain. We have to accept the calculations of the Vedic literature. These Vedic calculations are steady; the astronomical calculations made long ago and recorded in the Vedic literature are correct even now. Whether the Vedic calculations or modern ones are better may remain a mystery for others, but as far as we are concerned, we accept the Vedic calculations to be correct.

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