A recent news report from Vietnam features an exquisite and very ancient sculpture of Lord Vishnu. According to a press release from the Communist Party of Vietnam’s Central Committee (CPVCC) the Vishnu sculpture is described as “Vishnu stone head from Oc Eo culture, dated back 4,000- 3,500 years.” Recently the Government of Vietnam, despite its official Communist doctrine, has developed many programs and projects highlighting Vietnam’s ancient religious heritage. Its scholarly and archeological research and investigations are legitimate and its conclusions are authoritative. This discovery of a 4,000 to 3,500 year old Vishnu sculpture is truly historic and it sheds new light upon our understanding of the history of not only Hinduism but of the entire world.
The fact is there are no other ‘officially’ recognized Vedic artifacts that have been dated back to such an early date. This would make Vietnam home to the world’s most ancient Vedic artifact. While there are indeed many other ancient artifacts that represent the same Deity, they are not presented in the ‘Indic’ tradition and cannot be directly recognized as the Vishnu of the Indic Vaishnava tradition.
The 4000-3500 year old Vietnamese Vishnu sculpture is part of an exhibit featuring some of Vietnam’s most ancient artifacts. It was discovered in the region of Southern Vietnam's Mekong Delta. The Mekong (Ma Ganga) River is named after the Ganges River of India. The entire region was once the home to several ancient and prosperous Vedic Kingdoms and many intriguing and unique Vedic artifacts have been discovered.
The Vishnu sculpture was officially presented during the 5th Quang Nam Heritage Festival, which opened on June 21, 2013 in Hoi An City. The exhibition highlights many ancient objects dated from the Dong Son – Sa Huynh – Oc Eo eras of Vietnam’s ancient history.
“Entitled “Dong Son – Sa Huynh – Oc Eo cultures”, the exhibition put on display over 1,000 ancient objects which come from across the country and are made from diverse materials, from pottery to copper, including jewelry and farming tools, from the pre-ancient period belonging to the three cultures.
The significance of this discovery cannot be overestimated. The entire history of Hinduism and Vedic culture, as taught is the academic institutions of the world, has been built upon a false construct. According to mainstream academia Vedic ‘religion’ or Hinduism did not exist until the alleged ‘Aryans’ invaded India circa 1500 BC.