Rama’s Bridge

Reconciling Modern Science and Ancient Indian Mythology

Historians, archaeologists and researchers into our distant past insist that civilized life began on the Earth about five thousand years ago. They point to an absence of hard evidence supporting the existence of a preexisting culture prior to the rise of the Sumerians and the Egyptians, and despite recently discovered ruins of advanced construction at Turkey’s Gobeckli Tepe dating to over twelve thousand years ago. When alternative historians such as John Anthony West, Robert Schoch, and Graham Hancock propose that structures on the Giza plateau in Egypt may be far older than currently accepted, their claims are quickly dismissed. Unfortunately, no record exists concerning the date of their construction, so these complex masterpieces are placed in the accepted timeline of human development and culture.

But what if there were more evidence? What if a qualifying structure which was clearly identified in both written and oral traditions had been found? And what if the stories associated with that site put it well outside the generally accepted timeline? If an analysis of both the structure and the myth were done and were found to be equally supported, could it change the face of history—a history held very dearly by current science?

This might well be the case at a recently recognized site in India. Located in the Palk Strait off the Southeastern coast of India is a chain of limestone shoals. A shoal or sandbar is characterized by a long and narrow strip of land typically composed of sand, silt, and small pebbles deposited over time. This strip was once believed to be a natural formation, however, images taken by NASA satellites have shown the formation to be a long broken bridge beneath the ocean’s surface. Now called “Adam’s Bridge,” it extends for 18 miles from mainland India to Sri Lanka.

Hindu tradition has long held that this strip of land was a bridge built by its beloved deity Rama and described in the Hindu epic the Ramayana. It has been referred to since antiquity as “Rama’s Bridge” or Rama Setu. Rama remains a popular figure in Hindu mythology. The book that chronicles his life, the Ramayana, is a time-honored classic, which tells of a time when the gods flew through the air on ships, even as giants and monsters walked the earth. Most scholars who have analyzed the Ramayana state that it is simply an overambitious work of fiction, but is that true? Or is it possible that Adam’s Bridge is indeed the structure described in the Indian classic?

There are, in fact, several important pieces of evidence, which support the claim that Adam’s Bridge is the same one described in Hindu literature.

Rama, according to the Ramayana, was sent into exile because of a promise his father had made many years before. Rama was joined by his wife Sita and his brother Lakshmana. Through the course of a number of unfolding events, Sita is kidnapped by the 10-headed demon-king Ravana. Rama, in an attempt to rescue Sita, assembles an army, which includes a large group of what were called ape men, the Vanara.

It is discovered that Sita is being held captive on the island of Lanka. Rama, unable to move his massive force of ape men across the ocean, is advised by the sea god to build a bridge across the channel. For its construction, Rama enlists the help of the Vanara who build a causeway from the mainland to Lanka, constructing it of huge trees and rocks and boulders, which are described as resembling mountains. The building project is said to have lasted for five days and to have been 100 leagues in length. The bridge, once completed, allowed Rama to transport his army of Vanara across the ocean to Lanka. Once there, Rama’s forces killed Ravana and rescued Rama’s wife.

According to the Hindu tradition, Rama lived during the Treta Yuga, a period that began 2,165,000 years ago and extended until about 869,000 years ago. On the surface, this claim seems absurd. One assumption often made is that Rama and the many characters that populate the Ramayana are men and women, as we currently know them. This, however, does not explain individuals like the 10-headed demon-king Ravana and other strange individuals who inhabit the pages of the Ramayana. If one suspends, for a moment, however, the concept that figures described in the epic tale were modern human, as we currently know them, one will see how, in this new light, it all makes sense.

To begin an assessment of the validity for the claim that Adam’s Bridge is the same one talked about in myth, let’s first consider the bridge itself. Dr. S. Badrinarayanan, the former director of the Geological Survey of India and member of the National Institute of Ocean Technology (NIOT), performed a survey of the structure and concluded in 2007 that it was man-made. In the course of their study, Dr. Badrinarayanan and his team drilled ten boreholes along the alignment of Adam’s Bridge. His discoveries were startling. About six meters below the surface he found a consistent layer of calcareous sand stone, corals, and boulder-like materials. Some 4 to 5 meters further down, the team was surprised to discover a layer of loose sand, and then, below that, formations of hard rock.

A team of divers physically examined the bridge. The boulders observed were not typical marine formations. Instead, they were identified as having come from either side of the causeway. Dr. Badrinarayanan also indicates that there is evidence of ancient quarrying in the vicinity. His team concluded that materials from either shore were placed upon the sandy bottom of the water to form the causeway.

“Coral reefs are formed only on hard surfaces,” Badrinarayanan explained to the Indian press, “But during the study we found that the formation at Adam’s Bridge is nothing but boulders of coral reefs. When we drilled for investigation, we found that there was loose sand two to three meters below the reefs. Hard rocks were found several metres below the sand.”

“Such a natural formation is impossible,” says Badrinarayanan, “Unless somebody has transported them and dumped them there, those reefs could not have come there. Some boulders were so light that they could float on water. Apparently, whoever has done it, has identified light (but strong) boulders to make it easy for transportation. Since they are strong, they can withstand a lot of weight. It should be preserved as a national monument.”

Badrinarayanan also pointed out that once the channel connected the turbulent Bay of Bengal and the calm Gulf of Mannar, and it could have doomed the southern Tamil Nadu coastline. During tsunamis, when Nagapattinam and other northern shores have been ravaged, it was, in fact, Adam’s Bridge and Sri Lanka, which saved the southern coastline.

“Such comforts would not be there in future if this man-made barrier is cut open,” he warned.

With the creation of this engineering marvel revealed, we turn our attention to additional evidence that supports its connection to the Ramayana, in particular its claim to have been constructed during the Treta Yuga. Earlier we asked for a suspension of belief about the nature of the individuals portrayed in the Ramayana. But it is not to the gods, monsters, nor to the main character, Rama, that attention should be directed, but instead to the Vanara, the ape men, who constructed the bridge for Rama.

The Vanara, according to the Ramayana, were the children of the gods, who were born in the form of apes. The gods sired the Vanara just after Rama’s birth in order to help Rama in his war against Ravana.

Who were these ape men? Could the stories of the Vanara found in myth be descriptions of what are generally thought to be our earliest ancestors? Are they really talking about us, early humans? It does not seem entirely implausible.

Around 2.5 million years ago, just prior to the opening of the Treta Yuga—according to the conventional notion of human evolution—our species took a major leap forward with the appearance of the genus, “Homo.” Homo habilis, we are told, was the first group of primates able to utilize tools. By about 1.8 million years ago, Homo erectus and Homo ergaster had also made their debut. Homo ergaster was found primarily in Africa, while Homo erectus was located in Eurasia. Studies of these two species suggest that Homo ergaster had a smaller cranial capacity while his cousin Homo erectus a larger one. Studies of Homo erectus’ skeletal structure indicate that Homo erectus was robust, which suggests that they were stronger than contemporary man.

In addition to these physical changes, sites where the bones of Homo erectus have been discovered show evidence that these early men lived in small communities, in huts as temporary shelters, wore clothes, and created stone tools. In a nutshell, they began to display the early signs of civilization, something that had not appeared before in any other primate group. These “ape men” literally lived during the Treta Yuga. Are they the human ancestors of the Vanara of myth?

It is interesting to note that the name Adam’s Bridge came from an Islamic legend which maintains that Adam, the first man on Earth, traveled across this bridge when he was expelled from paradise. Could Adam, the “first man” and our distant relative, also have been a Homo erectus?

Even though the earliest known written copy of the Ramayana dates back only to about 1500 BCE, the epic tale is believed to be actually much older. Adam’s Bridge, it seems, is the same one described in its ancient pages.


The author is the founder of the Institute of Applied Energetics and the host of Just Energy Radio. Visit http://www.soulhealer.com or listen to Dr. Rita live online at www.JustEnergyRadio.com.

By Dr. Rita Louise