Bīrūnī, Muḥammad ibn Aḥmad, Alberuni's India (v. 2)

(London :  Kegan Paul, Trench, Trübner & Co.,  1910.)



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It is perfectly known to the Hindu astronomers that
the moon is eclipsed by the shadow of the earth, and
the sun is eclipsed by the moon. Hereon they have
based their computations in the astronomical hand¬
books and other works.

Varahamihira says in the Samhitd:—

V.  I.—"Some scholars maintain that the Head be- Quotation
longed to the Daityas, and that his mother was Sim- hamiMra's
hika.    After the angels had fetched the amritct out of ch. v.   '
the ocean, they asked Vishnu to distribute it among
them.    When he did so, the Head also came, resembling
the angels in shape, and associated himself with them.
When Vishnu handed him a portion of the amritct, he
took and drank it.    But then Vishnu perceived who it
was, hit him with his round cctkra, and cut off his head.
However, the head remained alive on account of the
amrita in its mouth, whilst the body died, since it had
not yet partaken of the amritct, and the force of the
latter had not yet spread through it.    Then the Head,
humbling itself, spoke: ' For what sin has this been    •
done ?'    Thereupon he   was  recompensed  by   being
raised to heaven and by being made one of its in¬

V. 2.—Others say that the Head has a body like sun
and moon, but that it is black and dark, and cannot
therefore be seen in heaven.    Brahman, the first father.
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