The Info List - Hindu Units Of Time

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texts describe units of Kala measurements, from microseconds to Trillions of years.[1] According to these texts, time is cyclic, which repeats itself forever.[2]


1 Time

1.1 Sidereal metrics

1.1.1 Small units of time used in the Vedas

2 Lunar metrics 3 Tropical metrics 4 Reckoning of time among other entities

4.1 Among the Pitṛs (forefathers) 4.2 Among the Devas 4.3 For Brahma

5 Four Yugas 6 Current date

6.1 Calculating the elapsed time since current Brahma's creation

7 See also 8 Notes 9 References 10 External links


measurements in logarithmic scale.

Various fragments of time are used in Hindu
Scriptures like Vedas, Bhagavata Purana, Vishnu Puran, Mahabharata, Suryasidhanta
etc. A summary of the Hindu
metrics of time (kāla vyavahāra) follows.[3] Sidereal metrics[edit]

Unit Definition Relation to SI units

Truti त्रुति Base unit ≈ 0.031 µs

Renu रेणु 60 Truti ≈ 1.86 µs

Lava लव 60 Renu ≈ 0.11 ms

Līkṣaka लीक्षक 60 Lava ≈ 6.696 ms

Lipta लिप्ता 60 Leekshaka ≈ 0.401 s

Vipala विपल

Pala पल 60 Lipta ≈ 24.1056 s

Vighaṭi विघटि

Vinādī विनाडी

Ghaṭi घटि 60 Vighaṭi ≈ 24 min

Nādī नाडी

Danda दण्ड

Muhūrta मुहूर्त 2 Ghaṭi ≈ 48 min

Nakṣatra Ahorātram (Sidereal Day) नक्षत्र अहोरात्रम् 60 Ghaṭī ≈ 24 h

30 Muhūrta ≈ 24 h

Alternate system

Unit Definition Relation to SI units

Truti Base unit ≈ 35.5 µs

Tatpara 100 Truti ≈ 3.55 ms

Nimesha 30 Tatpara ≈ 106.7 ms

Kāṣṭhā 30 Nimesha ≈ 3.2 s

Kalā 30 Kāṣṭhā ≈ 1.6 min

Muhūrta 30 Kalā ≈ 48 min

Nakṣatra Ahorātram (Sidereal Day) 30 Muhūrta ≈ 24 h

Small units of time used in the Vedas[edit]

Unit Definition Relation to SI units

Paramāṇu Base unit ≈ 26.3 µs

Aṇu 2 Paramāṇu ≈ 52.67 µs

Trasareṇu 3 Aṇu ≈ 158 µs

Truṭi 3 Trasareṇu ≈ 474 µs

Vedha 100 Truṭi ≈ 47.4 ms

Lava 3 Vedha ≈ 0.14 s

Nimeṣa 3 Lava ≈ 0.43 s

Kṣaṇa 3 Nimesha ≈ 1.28 s

Kāṣṭhā 5 Kṣaṇa ≈ 6.4 s

Laghu 15 Kāṣṭhā ≈ 1.6 min

Danda 15 Laghu ≈ 24 min

Muhūrta 2 Danda ≈ 48 min

Ahorātram (Day) 30 Muhūrta ≈ 24 h

(Month) 30 Ahorātram ≈ 30 days

Ritu (Season) 2 Masa ≈ 2 months

Ayana 3 Ritu ≈ 6 months

Samvatsara (Year) 2 Ayana ≈ 365 days[4]

Ahorātram of Deva

Lunar metrics[edit]

A Tithi
or lunar day is defined as the time it takes for the longitudinal angle between the moon and the Sun to increase by 12°.Tithis begin at varying times of day and vary in duration from approximately 19 to approximately 26 hours.[5][6] A Paksa (also Pakṣa) or lunar fortnight consists of 15 tithes.[5] A Māsa or lunar month (approximately 29.5 days) is divided into 2 Pakṣas: the one between new moon and full moon (waxing) is called gaura or (bright) or Śukla Pakṣa; the one between full moon and new moon (waning) Kṛiṣhṇa (dark) paksha[5] A Ṛitu (or season) is 2 Māsa[5] An Ayana is 3 Ṛitus[5] A year is two Ayanas[5]

Tropical metrics[edit]

A Yāma = 1/4 of a day (light) or night = 7½ Ghatis (घटि) = 3¾ Muhurtas = 3 Horas (होरा)tely 26 hours.[7] Eight Yāmas make half of the day (either day or night)[7] An Ahorātra is a tropical day (Note: A day is considered to begin and end at sunrise, not midnight.)[7]

Name Definition Equivalence

Yama याम ¼th of a day (light) or night ≈ 3 hours

Sāvana Ahorātram सावन अहोरात्रम् 8 Yamas 1 Solar day

Reckoning of time among other entities[edit]

Relationship between various time units in Hindu

Among the Pitṛs (forefathers)[edit]

1 day of pitras = 1 solar masa (month) [7] 30 days of pitras = 1 month of pitras[7] 12 months of pitras = 1 year of pitras[7]

The Lifespan of the pitras is 100 years of pitras (3,000 Solar years).[7] Among the Devas[edit] The life span of any Hindu
deva spans nearly (or more than) 4.5 million years. Statistically, we can also look it as:

12000 Deva Years = Life Span of Devas = 1 Mahā-Yuga.[8]

The Viṣṇu Purāṇa Time
measurement section of the Viṣṇu Purāṇa Book I Chapter III explains the above as follows:

2 Ayanas (6-month periods, see above) = 1 human year or 1 day of the devas 4,000 + 400 + 400 = 4,800 divine years (= 1,728,000 human years) = 1 Satya Yuga[8] 3,000 + 300 + 300 = 3,600 divine years (= 1,296,000 human years) = 1 Treta Yuga[8] 2,000 + 200 + 200 = 2,400 divine years (= 864,000 human years) = 1 Dvapara Yuga[8] 1,000 + 100 + 100 = 1,200 divine years (= 432,000 human years) = 1 Kali Yuga[8] 12,000 divine year = 4 Yugas (= 4,320,000 human years) = 1 Mahā-Yuga (also is equaled to 12000 Daiva (divine) Yuga)[8] [2*12,000 = 24,000 divine year = 12000 revolutions of sun around its dual][8]

For Brahma[edit]

1000 Mahā-Yugas = 1 Kalpa = 1 day (day only) of Brahma

(2 Kalpas constitute a day and night of Brahma, 8.64 billion human years)

30 days of Brahma = 1 month of Brahma (259.2 billion human years) 12 months of Brahma = 1 year of Brahma (3.1104 trillion human years) 50 years of Brahma = 1 Parārdha (156,764,160,000,000 human years) 2 parardhas = 100 years of Brahma = 1 Para = 1 Mahā-Kalpa (the lifespan of Brahma) (313,528,320,000,000 human years)

One day of Brahma is divided into 1000 parts called charaṇas.[9] Four Yugas[edit] Yugas can be understood easily by the Set theory. Satya Yuga
Satya Yuga
is the largest set & other yugas are its subsets. It also implies that Satya/Truth exists in all Yugas. The charaṇas are divided as follows:

The Four Yugas

4 charaṇas (1,728,000 solar years) Satya Yuga

3 charaṇas (1,296,000 solar years) Treta Yuga

2 charaṇas (864,000 solar years) Dvapara Yuga

1 charaṇas (432,000 solar years) Kali Yuga

Source: [1]

The cycle repeats itself, so altogether there are 1,000 cycles of Mahā- Yuga
in one day of Brahma.

One cycle of the above four Yugas is one Mahā- Yuga
(4.32 million solar years) as is confirmed by the Gītā Śloka 8.17 (statement) "sahasra-yuga-paryantam ahar yad brahmaṇo viduḥ rātriṁ yuga-sahasrāntāṁ te 'ho-rātra-vido janāḥ", meaning, a day of brahma is of 1000 Mahā-Yuga. Thus a day of Brahma, Kalpa, is of duration: 4.32 billion solar years. Two Kalpas constitute a day and night (Adhi Sandhi) of Brahma.[10] A Manvantara
consists of 71 Mahā- Yuga
(306,720,000 solar years). Each Manvantara
is ruled by a Manu.[9] After each Manvantara
follows one Saṃdhi Kāla of the same duration as a Kṛta Yuga
(1,728,000 = 4 Charaṇas). (It is said that during a Saṃdhi Kāla, the entire earth is submerged in water.)[9] A Kalpa consists of a period of 4.32 Billion solar years followed by 14 Manvataras and Saṃdhi Kalas.[9] A day of Brahma equals

(14 times 71 Mahā-Yuga) + (15 × 4 Charaṇas) = 994 Mahā- Yuga
+ (15 * 4800) = 994 Mahā- Yuga
+ (72,000 years)[deva years] / 6 = 12,000[deva years] viz. one maha yuga. = 994 Mahā- Yuga
+ 6 Mahā-Yuga = 1,000 Mahā-Yuga.[9]

Current date[edit] Currently, 50 years of Brahma have elapsed. The last Kalpa at the end of the 50th year is called Padma Kalpa. We are currently in the first 'day' of the 51st year.[11] This Brahma's day, Kalpa is named as Shveta- Varaha
Kalpa. Within this Day, six Manvantaras have already elapsed[12] and this is the seventh Manvantara, named as – Vaivasvatha Manvantara
(or Sraddhadeva Manvantara). Within the Vaivasvatha Manvantara, 27 Mahayugas[12] (4 Yugas together is a Mahayuga), and the Krita,[13] Treta and Dwapara Yugas of the 28th Mahayuga
have elapsed. This Kaliyuga is in the 28th Mahayuga. This Kaliyuga began in the year 3102 BCE in the proleptic Julian Calendar.[14] Since 50 years of Brahma have already elapsed, this is the second Parardha, also called as Dvithiya Parardha. Calculating the elapsed time since current Brahma's creation[edit] 432000 × 10 × 1000 × 2 = 8.64 billion years (2 Kalpa (day and night)) 8.64 × 109 × 30 × 12 = 3.1104 Trillion Years (1 year of Brahma) 3.1104 × 1012 × 50 = 155.52 trillion years (50 years of Brahma) (6 × 71 × 4320000) + 7 × 1.728 × 10^6 = 1852416000 years elapsed in first six Manvataras, and Sandhi Kalas in the current Kalpa 27 × 4320000 = 116640000 years elapsed in first 27 Mahayugas of the current Manvantara 1.728 × 10^6 + 1.296 × 10^6 + 864000 = 3888000 years elapsed in current Mahayuga 3102 + 2017 = 5119 years elapsed in current Kaliyuga. So the total time elapsed since current Brahma is 155520000000000 + 1852416000 + 116640000 + 3888000 + 5119 = 155,521,972,949,119 years (one hundred fifty-five trillion, five hundred twenty-one billion, nine hundred seventy-two million, nine hundred forty-nine thousand, one hundred nineteen years) as of 2018 AD Total age of Brahma is 100 (Brahma Years) which is equal to 313,528,320,000,000 Human years The current Kali Yuga
Kali Yuga
began at midnight 17 February / 18 February in 3102 BCE in the proleptic Julian calendar.[15] As per the information above about Yuga
periods, only 5,120 years are passed out of 432,000 years of current Kali Yuga, and hence another 426,880 years are left to complete this 28th Kali Yuga
Kali Yuga
of Vaivaswatha Manvantara.[note 1] See also[edit]

portal Astronomy
portal Astrology portal History
portal Philosophy portal Hinduism portal Religion portal Mythology portal Spirituality portal

Age of the universe Cosmology Hindu
astronomy Hindu
calendar Indian mathematics Indian science and technology Indian weights and measures Jyotish List of numbers in Hindu
scriptures Universe Vedanga Jyotisha Vedas Yojana


^ According to Sri Yukteswar Giri, guru of Paramahansa Yogananda, The ascending phase of the Kali Yuga
Kali Yuga
began in September 499 CE. Since September 1699, we have been in the ascending phase of the Dwapara Yuga. According to Sri Yukteswar, nobody wanted to announce the bad news of the beginning of the descending Kali Yuga, so they kept adding years to the Dvapara date (at that time 2400 Dvapara) only retitling the epoch to Kali.[16]


^ S.V. Gupta. Units of Measurement: Past, Present and Future. International System of Units. Springer. p. 3.  ^ Dick Teresi. Lost Discoveries: The Ancient Roots of Modern Science--from the Baby. SimonandSchuster. p. 174.  ^ S.V. Gupta. Units of Measurement: Past, Present and Future. International System of Units. Springer. p. 4,5.  ^ S.V. Gupta. Units of Measurement: Past, Present and Future. International System of Units. Springer. p. 5.  ^ a b c d e f S.V. Gupta. Units of Measurement: Past, Present and Future. International System of Units. Springer. p. 5,6.  ^ Kumar, Ashwini (2005). Vaastu: The Art And Science Of Living. Sterling Publishers Pvt. Ltd. p. 50. ISBN 81-207-2569-7.  ^ a b c d e f g S.V. Gupta. Units of Measurement: Past, Present and Future. International System of Units. Springer. p. 6.  ^ a b c d e f g Hans Kng. Tracing The Way: Spiritual Dimensions of the World Religions. A&C Black. p. 50.  ^ a b c d e Bryan E. Penprase. The Power of Stars. Springer. p. 182.  ^ Swami Mukundananda. Bhagavad Gita The Song of God.  ^ Burgess, Chapter 1, Verse 21 ^ a b Burgess, Chapter 1, Verse 22 ^ Burgess, Chapter 1, Verse 23 ^ Burgess, p17 ^ Burgess, Ebenezer Translation of the Sûrya-Siddhânta: A text-book of Hindu
astronomy, with notes and an appendix Originally published: Journal of the American Oriental Society 6 (1860) 141–498 , p17" ^ Yukteswar 1949.

Victor J. Katz. A History
of Mathematics: An Introduction, 1998.

External links[edit]

Translation of the Surya Siddhanta (1861) Daily Hindu
Calendar Exegesis of Hindu
Cosmological Time
Cycles Surya Siddhanta, Chapter I with Commentary and Illustrations Vedic Time

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Kalpa (day or night of Brahma) Pralaya Manvantara
(age of a Manu) Mahayuga
or Yuga
(4'320'000 years) Satya Yuga
Satya Yuga
(1,728,000 years) Treta Yuga (1,296,000 years) Dvapara Yuga
Dvapara Yuga
(864,000 years) Kali Yuga
Kali Yuga
(432,000 years) Manvantara
(life of Manu )= 71 * by 4,320,000 years Vaivas