# Vedic Mathematics: Sutras To Cure Maths Phobia and Make Learning Interesting

By Subha Rakesh

When I ask students about their interest in Mathematics, the
usual response has always intrigued me. Most students view Mathematics as
something that is the most difficult subject to learn and practice. Yet, a solid
base in arithmetic can help in generating more interest. And here comes the
role and significance of Vedic Maths. Working with numbers can be made more fun-filled
with techniques in Vedic Maths. It is very easy to understand and practice.
This helps students to be confident about numbers and theorems.

Some of you must have heard about Vedic Maths, but
might have wondered what it is all about. I first came to know about this unique
and interesting stream of Maths, when I was preparing for my Bank Exams some 20
years back.

Veda means knowledge or wisdom. We associate
Vedas with spiritual knowledge. But not many know it has a strong scientific
and mathematical base too.**A Deeper Look into Vedic Maths**

Vedic Mathematics is the collective name given to a set
of sixteen mathematical formulae or sutras and their corollaries or subsutras
derived from Vedic system. It is the name given to the ancient system of
Mathematics which supposedly is apart of Sthaptya Veda,an Upaveda of
Atharvaveda. It was rediscovered from Vedas by Jagadguru Swami Sri Bharati
Kisna Tirthaji Maharaj between 1911 and 1918.

Each formula deals with a different branch of
Mathematics. The most striking feature of Tirtaji’s work is its coherence.
The whole system is inter-related and unified. The methods are simple and help
students to get solutions to various arithmetical problems mentally. Complex mathematical
questions which otherwise may take numerous steps to solve can be done in a
very few steps. And these systems are so simple that even people with an
average knowledge of mathematics can easily understand them. The simplicity of
the techniques, encourages flexibility and help students to find their own
method. That is the beauty of Vedic maths. It encourages pupils to
be creative and does not remain limited to the same rigid
approach. **Benefits of Learning Vedic Maths**First, it plays with numbers and thereby removes
the phobia of Mathematics. It triggers interest and boosts confidence in
dealing with numbers. Moreover, it helps in solving problems 10 to 15
times faster. Vedic Maths helps in intelligent guessing, increased concentration and removes
burden of learning multiplication tables of 2 digit numbers.

Its techniques simplify multiplication, division, squaring, cubing etc. It even simplifies recurring decimals and auxiliary fractions. It helps in preparations for competitive exams, various entrance exams, PSC, Bank exams etc. By applying Sutras, we can save a lot of time and effort in solving the problems, compared to the formal methods presently used. Though the solutions appear like a magic, the application of Sutras is perfectly logical and rational.

I will give a simple
example:

All of us know how to square numbers.

Now let us see squares of numbers ending
with 5.

a)25 X 25

We can do in the traditional way writing one
below other as follows:

25 x

25

125

50

625

Now we can see how we do the same in Vedic Maths,
in a single step:

25 x 25 = (2+1) x 2/25=625.

1.Mulitply 5 with 5 to get 25.

2. Multiply 2 with successor of 2 ,i.e 3,so 2x 3
gives 6

So 25 x 25 = 625

35 x 35 =1225( 3
x4 =12/25)

85 x 85 =7225(8 x 9 =
72/25)

Sutra applied is Ekadhikena Purvena, meaning By
one more than the one before.

Another simple multiplication is multiplication
by 11. Subsutra applied is Anurupyena, meaning Proportionately.

Application of this Sutra is very easy, we just
have to add digits in pairs. Only addition is needed and no need to learn the
table of 11.

431 X 11= 0 431 0 X 11 = 0+4/4 +
3/3+1/ 1+0 =4741

First put 0 s before 4 and after 1(sandwich
multiplicand between single zero). Then add digits in pairs from right to
left.

54 x 11 = 0+5/5+4/4+0 = 594

81 x 11 = 891

From the above, we can see how fast we can
do calculations in a single step using Sutras.

**What is the ideal age to start learning
Vedic Maths**?

There are always some queries regarding the
ideal age for learning Vedic Maths. The techniques of Vedic Maths are not
accepted by our normal school systems. Students are given marks for
intermediate steps and the detailed calculation procedures. Vedic Maths
gives solutions in a single step without intermediate steps. Hence my
personal view is, any particular Vedic technique should be taught to a student
after he or she has mastered the traditional way, taught in schools. In smaller
grades, all steps are needed in a multiplication problem. But in higher grades
only solution of the multiplication is expected. So there is no ideal age for
learning Vedic Maths. However, most concepts will be understood better by
higher grade students.

**What is the difference between Abacus
and Vedic Maths? **Another query normally raised is about difference between
Abacus and Vedic Maths. Abacus is a Chinese system and Vedic Maths is an
Indian system. Secondly, Abacus system deals with arithmetic only and hence it
is taught to students of age group 5 to 13 years. It also helps in increasing
concentration and focusing and helps in speed calculations. Vedic Maths not
only covers arithmetic, but also algebra, geometry, calculus and other advanced
branches of mathematics. Hence it is suitable for students of any age.

The real beauty and effectiveness of Vedic
Mathematics cannot be fully appreciated without actually practicing the system.
Nowadays, Vedic Maths is being taught informally in many institutions. In
years to come, let us hope that this ocean of knowledge will be introduced in
schools as a part of curriculum, which in turn will help in removing the phobia
of Maths, sharpen the skills and give a strong arithmetic base to the students
from a young age.

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