Math or Magic?

As someone once said: "There's an easy way to do something, and an unlimited number of difficult ways".

Take simple division, for example:

Suppose you need to divide 43 by 9.

The answer is 4 (the first figure of 43) and the remainder is 7 (4 + 3).

Similarly 35 divided by 9 is 3 remainder 8.

In the Vedic system we use the natural properties of numbers.

The number 9 has the property that it is 1 below 10. So every 10 contains one 9 and one remainder.

Therefore, in 40, there will be 4 nines and 4 remainder. and so in 43 there must be 4 nines and 7 remainder.

This can be developed in many ways. For example to divide 123 by 9 the answer is 13 remainder 6.

  • The first figure of the answer (1 in the 13) is the first figure of 123.

  • The second figure of the answer (3 in the 13) is 1+2 (add the first two figures of 123).

  • The remainder is 6 is 1+2+3 (add all three figures of 123).

As B. K. Tirthaji (the man who reconstructed the Vedic system) said: "its magic until you understand it, and its mathematics thereafter".

'Fun With Figures' shows anyone from age 8 to 80 how to use the simple, beautiful system of vedic math to perform lightning-fast mental calculations. Visit:

Kenneth Williams