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Hey guys, I am at the Vittala temple in Hampi, and I am gonna show you the mystery of the musical pillars. This structure, called the musical hall is now closed for renovation. However, I managed to get the actual sounds from these pillars. Here is a pillar which shows a man playing ancient drums, if you tap this, you will hear the sound of these drums. Now, here is the sound of a temple bell. And here is the sound of a school bell. Now, you can combine various sounds to create even modern sounds, for example, this is the combination of the temple bell and school bell to create the modern day door bell. How do these different pillars create various sounds? But this is nothing, when you take this pillar that is made of one stone and has small columns carved onto it. However, if you tap on them, they create the seven notes of the musical scale in Indian classical music which is similar to do, re, mi, fa, sol, la, ti in the western world. What kind of stone technology existed in ancient India that could mimic the sounds of musical instruments? We can see many, many different sounds of advanced ancient instruments like Jal tarang, which uses water waves, Ghatam which uses terracotta pots, and even sounds of string instruments are created on these pillars.
How do these pillars, made of the same material, which is granite create these various sounds? Is it possible, that the ancient builders, somehow created holes inside these pillars. Because the only way to make different sounds from the same material of the same size is to alter its density. So do these pillars have holes inside them, that creates various sounds? The British had the same question in mind, and they not only took a huge pillar like this one but also cut one of the small columns to see what was in it. Here you can see the column that is missing, this was cut by the British during pre-independence in 1930s. And they were surprised to find that all these pillars and columns are just made of solid rock.
So, if there are no holes inside these pillars, how do you make them create different sounds. If they altered the dimensions like height, width and diameter, you could at least make them sound a little bit different. This is why we tap on walls to find out if they are thin or thick, because it will sound different. But if you look closely, all the columns have the same height, width and diameter, yet they create the seven notes of the Indian musical scale.
If they are all of the same dimensions, same material, and don’t have holes inside, how do they create different musical sounds. The only way this could be achieved is by changing the intrinsic density of the pillars, by adding a new material to it in different proportions, like modern day alloys. Today, we melt various metals and add them in different ratios to create the desired effect. However, did ancient builders melt solid blocks of granite and mix it with other materials to create different sounds? Locals argue that the musical pillars were created by rock melting technology. As evidence, they say that chains made of rocks were hooked to these corners on the ceiling. Now, this would be impossible without melting the rocks. These rock chains were later destroyed during foreign invasion just like the temple tower. A chain made of solid rock – is something like that even possible? Why do these corners of Hampi temple have empty hooks? Based on a tip, I traveled to Kancheepuram, which is 300 miles from Hampi. And here, we can see the chains hanging from the hooks on the corners. Yes, these chains, with many links, are in fact made of stone! Archeologists have confirmed that these are made of stone and were created at least 700 years ago! How could anyone create these stone chains with primitive tools? Even today, such a technology is not possible with modern machines. What kind of machines were used in ancient times and how were they able to create these chains made of rock?
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How do the Musical Pillars Work? Rock Melting Technology? Cymatics?