The Great Universities of India
Posted on November 12th, 2012

AggaDhamma, August, 2012

It can be said with a great deal of certainty that India was the country where knowledge was first systematized and provision made for its imparting at the highest levels of society in ancient times.

Whatever the discipline (subject), whether it was chemistry, medicine, surgery, the art of painting and sculpture, or dramatics, or principles of literary criticism, or mechanics, or even dancing – everything was reduced to a systematic whole for the purpose of passing the body of knowledge to future generations in a direct and detailed manner.

 University education on almost modern lines existed in India as early as 800BCE. The scientific achievements of ancient India are unparalleled in world history.

For example, Aryabhatt was the first to proclaim that the world is round, it rotates on its axis, it orbits the Sun and is suspended in space “”…” a thousand years before Copernicus published his heliocentric theory.

 Bhaskaracharya‘s work in algebra, arithmetic, and geometry fired the imagination of Persian and European scholars.

 Acharya Charak (6th century BCE) created the first system of medicine in the world “”…” Ayurveda, while Acharya Sudhrunt detailed the first ever surgical procedures in his “Sushrut Samhitia.”

The numbering system, the concept of zero, the constant Pi, and differential calculus are to name but a few of the great works of the learned Indians of old.

 The philosophical thoughts of India influenced regions far beyond its boundaries, reaching out to South-East Asia, China, and Japan; in some way all these countries and regions were influenced by Indian philosophy.

In particular, India has had an unparalleled relationship with China in the history of civilization. It is known that a great number of texts, Sanskrit or otherwise, have been translated into Chinese over the last 4,000 years.

 Apart from material and philosophical science, India pioneered the art of statecraft, systems for republics and empires, ancient democratic systems as were in contemporary Greece, systems of economics, Justice and Law (for the rich!) and literature; new ideas flourished and flowed out in a continuous stream “”…” never ever seen before, anywhere.

 India is the birthplace of four well established religions “”…” Buddhism, Jainism, Hinduism, and Sikhism and also the first Atheist school of thought developed here “”…” the Lokayats.

All this was the result of a highly non-dogmatic civilization where the personal quest for truth and knowledge was considered the supreme goal in life. India spawned great universities and centres of learning.

 However, it is glaringly obvious that this great flow, this long list of mathematicians, scientists and philosophers produced since ancient times was suddenly cut short in the 12th-13th centuries CE. “”…” just shortly after  the Muslims invaded India to impose their desert non-sense.


 This was the first university in the world, founded around the fifth or sixth centuries before the Common Era. Students from Greece, Anatolia, Persia, the Middle East and Central Asia would go and imbibe of the knowledge dispensed there. It was first destroyed by the White Huns in the third century CE.

What then revived and grew again was, later destroyed again by the Muslim invaders. It is a regrettable fact that science and learning has never recovered in that part of India which is now called Pakisatan.

 Alumni from that great institution of TAXILA include:

Chanakya “”…” statesman and philosopher, writer of the Arthsastra, and builder of the Mauryan Empire with help from his students.

Maurya Emperor Chandragupta Mauriya.

Charaka “”…” father of medical sciences.

King PrasentaJita of Kosala

Panini “”…” organized (composed) and published the Sanskrit Grammar.

Nagarjuna “”…” genius philosopher, logician, chemist & metallurgist

Alreya, Daumya, MuniJivika, with a good possibility Jesus, and others.


 The roots of Nalanda can be traced back to when the Buddha preached there. Soon afterwards a small Buddhist Vihara was started at Nalanda. Enlargements came with each return visit of the Buddha on his wanderings. It gradually accumulated power and prestige and became a full university around the 4th century CE. At the peak of its development it had close to 10,000 resident students, mostly of a Buddhist religious nature.

 Eminent scholars attended; those from China, Tibet, Japan, South-East Asia, Sri Lanka, Central Asia and from all over India.

 The great library was known as the “Treasury of Truth” or Dharmaganja. It had three main building and was thought to be a high as nine stories tall. The names of the three libraries were: (a) Ratnasagara [Sea of Jewels], (b)Ratnodadhi [Ocean of Jewels], (c)Ratnaranjaka [Delight of Jewels].

In 1193 the great University of Nalanda was sacked, looted and destroyed by the Islamic invader Bakhtiya Khilji and his followers.

 The Persian historian Minhaj-i-Siraj in his Chronicle the “Tabaquat-I-Nasiri” reported that “thousands of people were burned alive, and thousands beheaded as Khilji tried his best to plant Islam by the sword; the burning of the library continued for several months and smoke from the burning manuscripts would hang in the air for days.”


 The documentary film gives the date of establishment of this university as the fifth century CE.

There were six entrances to this building and near to each entrance was a monastery for resident monks. About 150 teachers were also resident.

It prospered for about four centuries before it was destroyed by Bakhtyar Khilji and his men in the 12 century CE.


 This was founded in the 8th century CE. and was later supported by the Pala dynasty.

Little is known about this place beyond what is recorded in Tibetan sources, which tells of thousands of students attending and hundreds of teachers.

It was destroyed by Muslim invaders around 1198 who then converted it into a fortress after having slaughtered the residents.


 King Devapala built the Dharmapala Vihara and University from 810 to 850 CE. at Somapura.

This university flourished for about 750 years before it was abandoned after the Muslim invasion.  The ruins of the university buildings cover an area of about one square mile.


 A large number of texts (writings) that would appear later in Kanjur and Tengjur were known to have been composed or copied at Jaggadala.

The earliest dated anthology of Sanskrit Verse, the Subasliaralnokosa , was compiled by Vidyakara at Jaggadala.

In 1027 the Muslims invaders looted, sacked and destroyed Jaggadala.


 According to sources this university was established in 475 CE. It was built by Maitraka kings who ruled Western India. It went on to achieve as much fame as Nalanda.

The six systems of Indian Philosophy, the various schools of Buddhism, Politics, Law, Agriculture and Economics were taught.

It flourished from 475 CE. to 1200 CE. It met with the same fate as the other universities “”…” nothing left except for some scripts marked on copper plate.


 This was a prominent seat of Buddhist learning that flourished until the eleventh century CE in India.

The entire university is spread over three campuses on top of three adjoining hills: Lalitgiri, Ratnagiri, and Udayagiri.

This university was destroyed in the late 11th century (1,000 CE..+),    

by Muslim invaders. It has been excavated recently.


 This vihara (living place for monks) was also destroyed. 

kAnd Hindu Universities (-??) :-


Its destruction came as an afterthought on the sultan’s agenda.

In 1196 CE., Sultan Qutb-ud-din Aibak advanced against the Anahil war of Patan, the capital of Gujarat.

Nizami writes that after Rajakaran was defeated and forced to flee, “fifty-thousand infidels were dispatched to hell by the sword.”


“more than 20,000 slaves (women) and cattle beyond all calculation fell into the hands of the victors”.

The city was sacked, its temples demolished and its palaces plundered.

On his return to Ajmer, Aibak destroyed the Sanskrit College of Visaladeva and laid the foundation for a mosque.


This was an ancient seat of learning which flourished until the 15th century.                                                                                                                       It developed the famous school of Nyana which flourished under the great masters of Logic: Gangesa, Vardhamana, Pakshadhara and others. The school of New Logic (Navya Nyanya) was founded by Gangesa Upadhyaya in “Tattva Chinatmani”, a work of about 300 pages whose commentaries make up over a 1,000,000 pages in three centuries of its study “”…” destroyed by Muslims!


Benares has always been a centre of learning and even in the Buddha’s day it was an ancient seat of learning.

Alberuni, the noted Arabian historian mentioned Benares as a  great seat of learning. It attracted the special attention of Muslim invaders who repeatedly laid waste to it “”…” until Aurengzib finished it off in the 17th century CE.


Accreditation goes to:

(Information reproduced from “Islam Destroyed Ancient Universities of India” attributed to “V2K” or “Victory to Kaffirs.” Also, a list of nine Buddhist Universities of Ancient India, as circulated by Dr. Daya Hewapathirana by E-mail.)

2 Responses to “The Great Universities of India”

  1. Lorenzo Says:

    It will happen in SL too unless the cancer is stopped, peacefully.

    Hindus have reclaimed SOME of their historical places in India in Gujarat, Ayodhya, etc. but Buddhists are few in number and powerless in India.

  2. Lorenzo Says:

    Please shed some light on what happens in Thailand NOW. It is the same thing.

    We must stand by Thailand.

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