Essay on the Science Education in Medieval Period

It is believed that modern science got developed in Europe in around the seventeenth century. Before this time, level of advancement in different branches of science in different parts of the world was quite the same. Regarding emergence of science in Indian society, it can be said that in it, that development of science is as old as its civilization.

As known that our nation became an important place where rulers of different religions established their monasteries, thus, various ideas and views got emerged and developed in the nation, which provided different look to its culture and societal condition.

Till about 600 A.D. a great deal of pioneering work was done by Indian scientists in the field of mathematics, medicine and astronomy. People were aware of various diseases and their treatment since ancient period, which is proved by the fact that in Rig-Veda, which is considered to be the oldest Indian scripture, one can find the mention of physicians and healing powers inherent in various medicinal herbs.


People were also aware of the various concepts found place in modern western scientific thoughts. For instance, in one of the Upanishads, concept of atom and the manner in which world was formed can be found.

It has been evidenced from various sources that people during that period were aware of medicinal powers of various vegetables and minerals and they used to apply some medicines for the cure of specific diseases. They also knew about the medicines which were being developed by western physicians. Very early in the civilization, India developed medical and alchemical practices of Ayurveda.

Notable contribution was made by Indian scholars in the number theory, decimal place value algorism trigonometry and algebra, which prove the fact that it’s people developed a great interest towards mathematics, which was an important subject to understand the scientific principles and facts.

During that period, various colleges and universities of international repute existed, where education of medicinal area was being provided. For refinement of ideas and to arrive at generalisation principles, tool of logical analysis was fully developed and was being used at a large scale. For acquiring scientific knowledge, various methods or tools were being used.


However, such kind of information was centred only with limited number of people, as a result of which, with development and span of time, level of scientific knowledge and traditions got declined to considerable extent.

Although there were some important institutions existing in Taxila and Nalanda universities, but there was lack of continuity in normal course of development of scientific knowledge. No continuous stages of developments were being found in methods and techniques of acquiring knowledge.

For instance, in the period between 750 A.D. to 1000 A.D., Buddhism flourished in our nation, the doctrines of which put an end on the practice of making use of scientific principles in the daily life. However, level of education got improved, but still people used to discriminate other human beings on basis of their caste and creed to which they belonged. Thus, the outlook of people was very narrow, as a result of which majority of them denied to accept or to make use of scientific principles in their life.

During this period, majority of persons were very superstitious and as a result of their wrong opinions, they used to deny scientifically proven facts and concepts. People of Brahmin caste used to believe that there was existence of some divine power in the universe and whenever they were confronted with any problem, it was as a result of ill-eye of that divine power.


They denied to make use of medicines for curing their diseases as they were of the belief that it would lead to contamination of their blood and religion. They did not accept the prevailing condition in which physicians used to treat sick people and used to touch dead bodies

of the human beings. It was as a result of their protestation that various hospitals and institutions providing medicinal knowledge were closed down. An element of discontinuity of the ancient Indian tradition was brought about by the gradual invasion from west Asia and central Asia.

As a result of such investor, various new things got entered in the nation, one of which was different languages and other was various scientific knowledge, methods and techniques.

When the foreigner brought such kind of information in the nation, scientific level got developed to some extent but it did not help in improving the condition to considerable extent as it was found by the experts that information brought about by the foreigners was of Indian origin and it was only incorporated and synthesized in medieval Arabia and Persian scientific traditions.