We all have tested the sweater or bitter taste of arguments going on since last couple of weeks between “Kapilvastu Forum” and “The Himalayan Voice”. If the taste was bitter, what we think it was not the intention of the duo, but to bring the facts and to come forward with a piece of academic discussion. The “Kapilvastu Forum” has already submitted in its one of the posts “Buddha between two nations” that we love Nepal very much. Our intention is not to heart anybody, particularly the Nepal nationals who are very much patriotic and sentimental for their national interest.
But two parties when fall into debate, some un-deliberate bitterness take place. It often happens. We all should take it in sporting spirit. Let us start with a fresh mood and continue the discussion.
Before writing further, let some points to be clear. That “Kapilvastu Forum” team is neither adamant nor fundamentalist but we are the students of Archaeology and history and have experience in the field Archaeology, thus we are in a better position to understand the “Archaeological evidences” revealed from the excavations, in comparison to those “Historians” that have never seen the Archaeological trench but explain the evidences with “full authority”. An Archaeologist can always become a good historian but all the historians cannot always become an Archaeologist. We should understand the limits of those “Historians cum table Archaeologists” while going through their archaeological explanations. “The Himalayan voice” is in practice to refer the view of various historians and this time quoting on one from the Delhi University -“the discoveries of Piprahawa ‘should settle' the long standing debate over Kapilvastu. Well may be and here too, her usage of the phrase ‘should settle’ is something unclear”. We think we have nothing to say more than above in this regard. But trying to churn-out extra meanings from the ‘should settle’ phrase is nothing but the making mountain to a mole.
The “Beyond sense” term was first used by the “Himalayan voice” team and in reply we also used this term at couple of places; while criticizing their weak logic or act. “The Himalayan voice” has quoted in their post “And we do not believe writing an open letter that way to any person holding public office is a childish act. This kind of thinking itself is a childish thinking”. We used the “childish” term for writing an open letter without examining the veracity of (false) media reports, but not for writing to a public office bearer. You have all rights to write open or sealed letters to any public authority but it should not be motivated by baseless propaganda which a section of Nepalese media did on “Chaitra 3”.
The Himalayan voice has again done some mistakes while labeling “Beyond sense” on us. They have asked us that whether we have gone through “This report” and “This Article” (means the report and article of Mr. T N Mishra). Possibly they have overlooked or merely gone through our post otherwise it was clearly mentioned with page no. and name while discussing the excavation of Tilaurakot in the 7th Para of our last post. We have, certainly and seriously, gone through the report of Shri Taranand Mishra. So nothing is “Beyond sense”; at least in our part. You should again, carefully and with peace of mind go through our last post and withdraw your comment on “Beyond sense”.
You have rightly said that a non-native always fails to understand what the native knows or understands of his language and culture. Most of “Kapilvastu Forum” team members come from much closed areas to the Indo-Nepal border and bear the same language and culture what the Nepal Terai has. So, in terms of the Bhojpuri-Awadhi speaking part of Nepal Terai, we are also “Native”. Hence we understand the language, culture and even Archaeology of the region under discussion in a better way.
You and we, both have submitted that “let evidences speak”. There may be many views on the exact location of Kapilvastu or Lumbini and scholars have full freedom to put their views. But every view can be challenged with the help of evidences. This is what the meaning of “let evidences speak”. So no matter that some scholars in India accept or do not accept the birth place of Lord Buddha- Lumbini is in Nepal. They may have some evidences and logic which may be further challenged with evidences.
Again on the epigraphy of Kapilvastu- the Himalayan voice has claimed in their last post that “We have also provided them with equally compelling inscription from our posting.” Possibly they are talking about a seal (or sealing) from Tilaurakot which is deciphered “Sa - ka - na – sya”. But, it does not certainly mean “belonging to Sakyas”. Since this seal is not clear and has some letters missing, it may be read as – ‘SANKARSANASYA’ – ‘of Sankarshana’. Sankarshana is another name of Krishna’s elder brother Balram who was a member of chaturbyuha of Panchratra sect. The seal is not clear so nothing firmly can be stated about it. While the epigraphical evidences of Piprahawa are strong and in a successive chronological order starting from Pre-Mauryan period to the early Gupta period; as we have discussed in our last post. If there are some more epigraphical or any direct evidences available from Tilaurakot declaring the site “Kapilvastu” as in the case of Piparahawa or at Rumminidei for Lumbini; we request you to please bring them out for open discussion. Till that the Piparahawa will receive privilege to be called Kapilvastu. Our aim is to come forward with the evidences and have discussion with open mind and not to pose any subjective view.
The Himalayan voice has called some Professors for helping them and urges them to re-check the date of relic caskets by C-14 or other methods. But as archaeologist we know that C-14 dating of the said relic casket is now not possible to be done but other methods are still reliable. One is the palaeography and another is the stratigraphical comparisons. You are not seen ready to accept these two methods of dating. However the palaeographical evidences are most authentic for dating and C-14 and other such methods are used where there is no direct evidence for the dating. The archaeological history is the witness that C-14 dating is often required attestation from other relative methods of Archaeological dating. In present case; demand is made for those articles that were unearthed before 112 and 40 years respectively. Can any Archaeo-Physicist able to do C-14 dating of such articles? If so, please come forward to help them.