Here’s the Baadshah(king) of India zero’0′.No, I am Not talking about that zero SRK’s movie…lolz. Zero is the pinnacle, the end of all knowledge. It is a powerful tool that helps us navigate life better! We have heard that the end of all learning is humility, the realization that we know nothing compared to all we need to know! If you believe this, you believe that all learning and knowledge lead you to a feeling of nothingness, a feeling that you are shunya, a zero. Sounds alarming, but the zero you feel after a lot of learning is a very different place to be in from the zero you feel before you embark on that learning!

Can you make any mathematical calculations if you don’t have zero? Of course, you can calculate but the procedure would be much difficult. But once upon a time, there was no zero. It wasn’t a fact that somebody suddenly came up with the idea of the zero and the mathematicians throughout the world accepted it.

The word ‘zero’ came originally from the Arabic al-sifr or sifr via Italian zefira together with ‘cipher’. Zefira means, ‘it was empty’ and sifr means ‘zero’ or ‘nothing’. Zero is called Shunya in Sanskrit, meaning void or empty or nothing. The glyph for the zero digits was written in the shape of a dot, and consequently, it was called a Bindu or a dot. Zero was independently invented three times. The final the independent inventnon of the zero by Indian astronomer Aryabhatta, a great mathematician stated in the middle of the fifth century.


“The game isn’t over till the clock says Zero” – Paul Pierce


”God is the tangential point between zero and infinity” – Alfred Jarry

STATISTICS – What Numbers have to Say?


  • Actor Zero Mostel’s real name was Samuel Joel Mostel and he got his nickname from his parents constantly telling him that he would never amount to anything in life.
  • Anders Celsius’ initial introduction of the scale of temperatures placed zero as the boiling point of water and 100 as its freezing point.


  • French astronaut Patrick Baudry was the first to state that in zero gravity one can put their trousers on two legs at a time.
  • Different sports have different terms for zero like nil in soccer, love in tennis and a duck in cricket.


  • Year zero is a year used in some calendar systems like astronomical year numbering where it coincides with the Georgian year 1 BC. Buddhist and Hindu calendars also have the year zero concepts.
  • Some universities, including Oxford and Cambridge, have “week 0” or “noughth week”. This refers to the week before the first week of lectures in a term.


  • The United States Air Force starts basic training each Wednesday. The first week is considered, to begin with, the following Sunday. The four days before that Sunday are often referred to as “Zero Week”.


  • 0 is also used in 24-hour clocks and the international standards ISO 8601. This denotes the beginning of the day.
  • Zero is sometimes used in street addresses, especially in schemes where even numbers are one side of the street and odd numbers on the other. For example, Massachusetts’s Harvard Square has the address of 0 Garden Street.

DESCRIPTION – Let’s take  a Deep Dive

How if we thought we were zeroes, we would have no expectations, and so no disappointments; if we had zero chips on our shoulder, we would not suffer any affront to dignity; if we had zero mental clutter, we wouldn’t suffer from useless feelings of guilt or fear. If we had zero memory, there would be no bitter carry-overs, no half-truths that prevent new learning.


A person who comes to a situation with zero understanding or in other words, an open mind, can understand a new situation afresh, encouraging creativity. If we are zero in ego, we don’t take offense easily, while forgiving and forgetting fast. Zero brings peace; it brings a feeling of calmness and power over self and situations.


Training ourselves to clear the clutter and enjoy the quiet of emptiness helps build better relationships and better lives. Complicated relationships are the result of past baggage; try approaching a situation afresh, forgetting past bitterness and start with a clean slate. In a corporate world, keep a hierarchy-less approach, open your door and learn more about your organization, tuning in with the vibes you feel.


Perhaps, it was not a coincidence that zero was discovered in India by mathematician Aryabhatta. When we meditate we are told to look within into nothingness and to think of nothing. It is in that space that enlightenment comes. The Bhagavad Gita and Vedas talk of the Universe being created out of nothingness, shunya or zero. God in his unmanifest form is also shunya; in his manifest form, He is Ananta, or infinite; and so, from zero comes infinity. God was one but manifested in many forms — that is the power of zero!


Keeping your mind a tabula rasa is a great point to begin —- and an equally great point to end it! This is not the zero of ignorance, illiteracy, lack of knowledge or confidence. This zero is the natural outcome of knowledge and supreme wisdom; it is the zero of extreme self-confidence. It is not that you don’t know anything; it is more than you are willing to learn everything! A zero mind is accepting and receives, hears and registers, and notes critical points. It is the abode of peace, quiet, bliss and solitude. It means you have everything, you know everything and yet are willing to begin at the starting point!


A farmer lost a watch in a haystack. He asked a group of children to help him look for it, promising a reward. The children hunted for hours, but couldn’t locate the watch. Sometime later one of them came back and looked again. He found the watch within a few minutes. Asked how he did that, the child said, “I sat still and concentrated. I heard it.”


Zero in Math

  • Names for the number 0 in English include ‘zero’, ‘nought’ in the UK, ‘naught’ in the US, ‘nil’, or—in contexts where at least one adjacent digit distinguishes it from the letter “O”—oh or o.
  • Hence, without the number 0, mathematics would never stand as strong as it is today. And as we all know, math includes the invention of all the engineered tools and modern devices to date.


Zero in computers

  • A computer is made to understand two digits- 1 and 0. For computers, 1 represents ‘True’ and 0 represents ‘False’. Using the combinations of multiple 1s and 0s, the empire of computers is established.
  • With the use of zero in such minimal places, development and advancement have taken a huge step. From simple program codes to artificial intelligence, zero has constantly played a major role.


Zero in science

  • The zeroth law of thermodynamics was formulated after the first, second, and third laws, but considered more fundamental, thus its name


Numerical Significance

  • Zero is both a number and a numerical digit. Though it holds no value of its own it is the sole reason for the existence of a whole number system. Zero is also used as a placeholder in place value systems.


Binary Significance

  • Zero is one of the two digits used in binary coding. Binary coding is extensively used in the digital world largely in computer applications, digital communications and anything which involves digital circuits.


A new beginning

  • Zero represents the low points or failures in life. It represents situations where we feel low and of no importance but it also holds a positive sign as the low in life points are the triggers to overcome pessimism and work dedicatedly to achieve great heights. Additionally, anyone who comes to a situation with zero understanding or in other words, an open mind, can understand the new situation afresh, enabling creativity.
  • Zero-hour: Zero hour means:
  • Midnight, or 00:00
  • Zero Hour in the military means the scheduled time for the start of some event, especially a military operation.
  • In India, Zero Hour is the time of a sitting session of India’s Lok Sabha immediately after the Question Hour.


Zero lies at the heart of science, engineering, and mathematics. Life without zero thus seems to be incomplete.

According to the great scientist Einstein– ‘we should be thankful to the Indians who taught us how to count, without which no worthwhile scientific discovery would have been possible !’

Moreover, the Indians were the first to see that zero can be used for something beyond nothing – at different places in a number, it adds different values. For example, 38 is different from 308, 3008 or 380. I feel that the world’s best innovation was this place a value-based mathematical system which forced Indians to invent zero.

In other words, the greatest contribution of Indians to the world is Nothing!; nothing means Zero. The story of zero is always been interesting and it is, of course, a proud story for every Indian.

Author – Mayuri Aher

Scrutiny – Riya Chandra

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