The battle of Megiddo took place on c. April 16th, 1457 BCE. In the battle, Pharaoh Thutmose III defeated an alliance of Canaanite and Mittani kingdoms. It opened a way for Thutmose to expand further northward. The importance of this battle lies in the fact that it is perhaps the first battle to have been recorded with considerable and reliable details.
The bible says that the end of the world will be in the form of Armageddon (Nothing to do with the movie). The word Armageddon is frequently used to refer to the end of times. But Armageddon does not refer to an event. It in fact refers to a place Har Megiddo, mount of Megiddo, where the battle between the Messiah and Antichrist takes place. Thus it is fitting that the place where the first battle properly described took place would be the place for the final battle as well.
The Mittani signed a treaty with the Hittites in 14th century BC. This treaty document is the first exhibit of Indo Aryan language. The treaty is drawn with the blessings of Indara (Indra), Mitras (Mitra), Nasatianna (Nasatya or Ashwins) and Uruvanass (Varuna). There is neither any evidence of Agni or Soma (The primary Gods of Rigveda) nor of Rama or Krishna, the major Gods of Modern Hinduism.
Avesta, the collection of holy texts of Zoroastrian purported to be written sometime in the middle of second millennium BCE, has some things in common with Rigveda. There is marked interchangeability between the sounds h and s in the words used in the two. Thus we have Ahura (Asura), hepta hindu (Septa Sindhu) and daha (dasa). The religious concepts are however reversed. Thus we have Ahura (Ahura Mazda) as the chief God in Avesta while the Vedic religion terms Asura as the demons. Indara (Indra) is demonic in Avesta as are the other Deavas. This could be interpreted as resulting from a religious dissension between the original group of people in the Persian-Mittani-Western end of the Indian subcontinent. One group favoring Ahura going to Persia while the other migrating towards India. The modern Parsis (Root word Persia) are the descendants of these Zoroastrians. They later migrated to India during the eastern expansion of Islamic Caliphates. Thus we see that the two branches eventually merged geographically.
The Rigveda (which means knowledge of praising (or verse)) as we know now was maintained through oral tradition till the Gupta period (4th to 6th CE) when it was written down in Brahmi script. Rigveda is believed to have been composed during the Iron Age (around 800 BCE). Rigveda is divided into 10 mandalas or family book of which the first and the tenth are the youngest and longest. Each mandala is purported to be written by a Rishi. Eg.,Maharshi Vashishta is credited with composing the seventh mandala while Vishawamitra composed mandala 3. The oral tradition of memorizing the text included techniques like padapatha and samhita. The primary deities to whom the hymns are devoted are Indra and Agni. Other Gods mentioned include Soma, Varuna, Savitr, Aditya and Ashwins among others.
The famous Gayatri Mantra is a part of third mandala of Rigveda attributed as we have seen to Vishwamitra. Gayatri in fact refers to a Sanskrit meter that contains a structure of 3 lines with 8 syllables each. Thus, theoretically there are many Gayatri mantras. The recitation starts with Om Bhur bhuvah svah, which is known as mahavyahrti (Great utterance) and is a prefix recommended by Taittiriya Aranyaka to be applied to all recitations. It is not a part of the Gayatri Mantra. Following this is the Mantra proper. The meaning of the Mantra – “May we attain the excellent glory of Savitar the God so may he simulate our prayers.” The mantra is thus dedicated to God Savitr and hence is also known as Savitri.
Mandala 10 contains hymns like Nasadiya Sukta, Hiranyagarbha Sukta and Purusha Sukta. Nasadiya Sukta (It is narrated in the opening credits of the series Discovery of India) is believed to be the earliest account of agnosticism. Hiranyagarbha Sukta (Song in the ending credits) deals with the creation of the cosmos while the Purusha Sukta is dedicated to Purusha from whose different body parts Gods (Indra and Agni from the mouth) and various Varnas appeared.
PS. It took me a long time to write this post. The really bad quality of writing demonstrates it amply.