Microcosmology: Atom In Jain Philosophy & Modern Science ► 03 ► [3.2.3.3] A Critique - Pudgala : Attributes - Black Holes In Jain Astrophysics

Posted: 04.03.2008

While the theory of black hole is very modern, centuries ago the Jain seers were actually aware of the existence of black holes. In the Jain canon, Bhagavati Sutra, two types of black holes are described in some detail.[Bhag. Sut 6/5/70-106]  

They are

  1. tamaskaya
  2. krsnarayi, (krsnaraji, krsnarati).[Krsnarayi could also be krsnarasi which means mass of blackness]

Tamaskaya literally means a body composed of darkness. Its shape is described as conical with the base having the shape of a cowrie (i.e. elliptical) and the surface parabolic. It has neither planets nor satellites. It is a huge area of space, but contains nothing except swirling gaseous matter, which is infinitely destroyed, created and destroyed again. Brightest sunlight would be transformed into utter darkness, if it nears tamaskaya. It is totally black and is described as "terror-producing." Even a deva (celestial being) will be horrified if he happens to remotely experience the force of one of these black bodies, and would instantly fly away to escape from its clutches.
There are two sizes of tamaskaya:

  1. with base diameter of numerable yojanas and a volume of innumerable yojanas.
  2. with base diameter as well as a volume of innumerable yojanas.

Krsnarayi literally means black mustard or mass of darkness. Two of them exist in each of the four directions making a total of eight Krsnarayis. All the four internal ones are rectangular in shape while the two external ones in north and south are triangular and east and west are hexagonal. Like tamaskaya, a Krsnarayi contains nothing but swirling gaseous matter, which is infinitely destroyed, created and destroyed again. It is totally dark and black in colour. The rest of the description is similar to that of tamaskaya.

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