Published On : Sun, Nov 1st, 2015

Why is Sun so vital to us?

sun-funIndian Vedic document, Rigveda, enshrined with citation, as, surya aatma jagatah tasthushashcha…meaning Surya (Sun) is the soul of the entire universe. Not only is Sun ‘atma’, it is also considered ‘mitra’ (friend)—Om Mitraya Namah, Om Bhanave Namah (Salutation to Omkar-form Sun who is a friend to the whole cosmos).

The Sun is vital not only to Indians, but also to all cultures across the world. Ancient cultures, along the Sanatana culture of India, namely, Egyptian, Babylonian, Chinese, Greek, Roman and Persian too regard Sun as a great deity to be worshiped. The reason is that Sun is source of all sorts of life on the earth, in water and air. It is Jadajeevan as said in Surya Sanjivani.

It means that all lives including the vegetation depends on Sun. Even water and air cannot remain purified without Sun. Perchance the Sun stops rising, all lives will turn dead. Also, Sun is considered to be having 12 eyes according to Indian mythology, and in case it opend all 12 eyes at a time, the earth will be gulped by flames.

In other words, if the Sun burns terribly, the earth will be burnt to ashes and water in oceans will get dried up, what to talk about vegetation and the world of animals, birds and other creatures.

Size of Sun
The radius of Sun is tentatively described as 100 times of equatorial latitude of earth, may be 13,92,000 kms, which also means that 13 lakh rounds of earth may be accommodated in the Sun. Ultimately it is super star, supersized, superheated, superpower and beyond the scope of close circuit scientific study.
Certain scientists describe its size as 750 times of all stars and planets moving in the solar system. The mass of Sun is 4,33,000 time of mass of earth.

The light and energy Sun emanates
The Sun being the source of life emanates light and energy as major elements. Its photosphere temperature is said to be average 5055 to 6000 degree celsius about 10,000 degree F). Its radiation is termed as its light. The sun emanates many forms of radiation; some of them are radio waves, visible light, x-rays, infrared light, and ultraviolet light. Fortunately the earth’s electromagnetic shield and atmosphere are good at shielding us from most of the “dangerous to life” radiations of the sun.

Sun’s all energy does not reach the earth. At the upper reaches of our atmosphere, the energy density of solar radiation is approximately 1,368 W/m2 (watts per square meter). At the earth’s surface, the energy density is reduced to approximately 1,000 W/m2 for a surface perpendicular to the Sun’s rays at sea level on a clear day.

Birth of Sun
The birth of Sun is believed to be about 450 crore years ago, and it is also believed that the heat in the nucleus (core) of the Sun is likely to remain for about 5-6 kharab (one kharab= hundred billions) years, as it is expected. The mass of Sun is surrounded by hydrogen gas in abundance. The Sun is personified in many mythologies: the Greeks called it Helios and the Romans called it Sol. Also, it is Shams for Muslims and Arabs, Ahuramazda for Zoroastrians, Suryanarayan or Surya for Hindus, Amateru for Japanese and so on. The Sun is, at present, about 70%hydrogen and 28% helium by mass everything else (“metals”) amounts to less than 2%. This changes slowly over time as the Sun converts hydrogen to helium in its core, as per scientific theory.Per second 65,24,00,000 ton helium is produced which gets converted into 45,00,000 ton energy.

The life of Sun is said to 10 to 15 kharab years. But, it is not a dependable statement, for the stock of hydrogen and helium will keep increasing in proportion and Sun’s life will also remain in existence.

Regarding birth of the Sun, religions have a different say. All religions believe that Sun is created by God with the creation of the universe. Nevertheless, these two different claims are quite interesting between the mystery and the science.

But, why to worry?
If every thing has taken birth, it will surely die, as goes the law of Nature, Yet, there are religions all over the world, and they are the solid base for faith for survival of universe. As cited in certain scriptures that a new Sun may be born after deluge (Pralaya). But as along as human life is surviving on the earth, human faith will attract God, and God in turn will take care or safety of mankind on the earth. He will keep Sun, Moon, Winds, Water and Earth for mankind.

There is another theory that man hardly crosses a hundred years of age. Thus old man will go and new man will come to keep the cycle going. So, there is no need to worry about Sun. A lot of studies have been made on Sun and will continue to be made even in future and new facts may emerge. This write-up aims at revising ‘a very little information’ on Sun, which man usually forgets or may be not ever known by him, just to keep your Sunday entertained by reading and understanding the interesting facts given herein.

Literature and Sun
Besides religions, scientific theories and various philosophical aspects, literature in the form of scriptural or factually romantic literature guided by its emotive aspect too has been influenced by Sun. Literatures of all types, whether devotional or emotional, have praised Sun for its ever tall, yet realistic entity. To quote a couplet in Urdu, thus;
Suraj hun, zindagi ki ramak chhod jaunga;
Main doob bhi gaya, to shafaq chhod jaunga.

(I am Sun, and I will leave the glow of life behind while going to set. And, even if I am set (gone) I will leave behind at least the twilight.)

Since the Sun is a life-giving force, all litterateurs have adored it for its incomparable utility. To allude, a Hindi Film (Ghar Sansar) song may be recalled, as, ‘Pahadon ko chanchal, kiran choomti hai. Hawaa har nadi ka badan choomti’ …(The playful or fickle rays of Sun are kissing the mountains while the wind is kissing the river-body.) Also, Sari kayenat naha rahi hai, Suraj ki kirno mein…(The whole cosmos is bathing in the Sun-rays).

Medical science says, early morning rays of Sun are good for eyes as they are loaded with vitamin-D.
Hindus offer water to Sun daily and do Surya Namaskar as a ritual. Hindu god Hanuman during his childhood swallowed reddish looking rising sun, considering it to be an apple (Indian Myth). Japan is called ‘land of rising Sun.’ Astrology describes the significance of Sun sign in the zodiac which has a horoscopic influence on the life of man. People across the world crave for Sun-shine when it remains clouded for a long time, and so on.

——I P Singh