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Ancient India-the First Civilization

The first people was thought to have reached India from Africa in 40,000 BC.

The first civilization started out as hunters and gatherers.Around 4000 BC the Indians started farming.The Indians then moved near the Indus River Valley where they started using irrigation and started building their first cities.

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The Indians built two main cities that we know of Harappa and Mohenjo-Daro. Both cities are currently located in current Pakistan.The first Indian buildings and houses were built out of stone and were built two to three stories high and they had sewage systems. The Indians built there structures with bronze tools.

They learned how to make bronze tools from the Sumerians. The Indians wrote hieroglyphs, same as the ancient Egyptians. By 2000 BC the Harappan civilization had collapsedThe earliest buildings in India were built by the Harappan people the Indus River Valley, in about 2500 BC. Their buildings included high brick walls around their cities to keep out enemies.Among India’s ancient architectural remains, the most characteristic are the temples, Chaityas, Viharas, Stupas and other religious structures. The distinct architectural style of temple construction in different parts was a result of geographical, climatic, ethnic, racial, historical and linguistic diversities. Taj Mahal is regarded as one of the eight wonders of the world.

It was built by the Muslim emperor Shah Jahan in Agra, India. Taj Mahal was constructed over a period of twenty-two years, employing twenty thousand workers.It was made entirely of marble. The Taj Mahal incorporates and expands on design traditions of Persian architecture and earlier Mughal architecture. The Indian period is unique in its art, literature and architecture. Indian art is constantly challenged as it rises to the peak of achieving the ideals of one philosophy in a visual form, then begins anew for another. This challenge and revolution in thought ovides, Indian artists with reasons for innovatiion and creation, and the process of visualizing abstract ideas and the culture of the land.

Each religion and philosophical system provided its own nuances, vast metaphors and similes, rich associations, wild imaginations, humanization of gods and celestial beings, characterization of people, the single purpose and ideal of life to be interpreted in art. Indian religions are the related religious traditions that originated in the Indian subcontinent, namely Hinduism, Jainism, Buddhism, Sikhism and Ayyavazhi, inclusive of their sub-schools and various related traditions. They form a subgroup of the larger class of “Eastern religions”.Indian religions have similarities in core beliefs, modes of worship, and associated practices, mainly due to their common history of origin and mutual influence. Buddhism is one the major religions in India. Buddhism as traditionally conceived is a path of salvation attained through insight into the ultimate nature of reality. Buddhism encompasses a variety of traditions, beliefs and practices that are largely based on the teachings of Siddartha Guatama, commonly known as the Buddha (Pali/Sanskrit for “The Awakened One”).

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