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Fwd: [Ind. & West. Astrology] Re:aryabhatta.net/Varahamihira

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  • Paul Kekai Manansala
    ... Well, the nakshatras first appear as lunar mansions. Presumably, as found in very many cultures, the conjunction of the Moon with certain stars was used
    Message 1 of 14 , Apr 29, 2009
      --- In IndiaArchaeology@yahoogroups.com, "Koenraad Elst" <koenraad.elst@...> wrote:
      >
      > > > 1. There is a concrete evidence that they were following sidereal zodiac of 27 nakshatras >
      > > >
      > >
      > > The nakshatras are definitely sidereal and not "tropical" as they are related to the movement of the Moon and not the Sun.
      > >
      >
      > The nakshatras are sidereal because they consist of stars and are strictly unrelated to the phases of the "tropical" year cycle. The moon has nothing definitional to do with it; tropical astrologers consider the moon's position in the tropical signs. But in practice, the moon does have something to do with it: the present practice of astrologers, both sidereal and tropical, to consider the sun's position *in* a zodiacal sector or constellation involves geometrical calculations, as the sun is never seen against the constellations.
      >

      Well, the nakshatras first appear as lunar mansions. Presumably, as found in very many cultures, the conjunction of the Moon with certain stars was used in electional astrology.


      >
      >
      > > The zodiac is neither purely sidereal or tropical but rather luni-solar in origin with the year starting on the Full Moon, or more accurately the culmination, closest to the star Spica.
      > >
      >
      > The choice of Spica as marking the middle of the zodiac (180° after its putative starting point O° Aries) dates to the 1950s, as far as I know.
      >

      Not sure what you mean here by "1950s." Citra-Spica has been traditionally used to determine both the Indian and Greek zodiacs (and the Chinese one also), for example, Brahmagupta and Varahamihira. They generally gave Spica's ecliptic longitude as either 180 or 183 degrees.

      > The sidereal Z depends on the "fixed" stars (which unfortunately for it are not really fixed when considered over the long term) and the sun/earth revolution plane, the tropical Z depends only on the sun/earth cycle without reference to the stars, which could all disappear without affecting the tropical Z. Neither requires the existence of the moon.
      >


      Maybe not, but the division of the ecliptic into twelve parts appears related to harmonizing of the lunar months with the solar year, thus, the beginning of the year for astrologers is Caitrasuklapratipada, when the Full Moon is closest to Spica and the Sun correspondingly near the first point of Mesha (Aries).

      Regards,
      Paul Kekai Manansala
      Quests of the Dragon and Bird Clan
      http://sambali.blogspot.com
    • Koenraad Elst
      ... That the conjunction with the moon was used, is exactly what I wrote. But they did that merely to locate it and determine the phase of the month, not for
      Message 2 of 14 , May 2, 2009
        --- In IndiaArchaeology@yahoogroups.com, "Paul Kekai Manansala" <p.manansala@...> wrote:
        >
        >
        > Well, the nakshatras first appear as lunar mansions. Presumably, as found in very many cultures, the conjunction of the Moon with certain stars was used in electional astrology.
        >


        That the conjunction with the moon was used, is exactly what I wrote. But they did that merely to locate it and determine the phase of the month, not for purposes of electional astrology (i.e. choosing the time for an entreprise on the basis of presumably beneficial planetary configurations, as is commonly done for Hindu weddings), which is at most a third phase in the development of astrology, after unsystematic omens and systematic horoscopy used for horary or natal astrology. Of none of these is there a trace in the Rg-Veda nor, to my knowledge, in the other Vedas. Omens appear in the Parashara Samhita and the core Mahabharata. Horoscopy is, of course, a late-Babylonian-cum-Hellenistic invention and a post-Alexandrine import into India.

        >
        > >
        > >
        > > > The zodiac is neither purely sidereal or tropical but rather luni-solar in origin with the year starting on the Full Moon, or more accurately the culmination, closest to the star Spica.
        > > >
        > >
        > > The choice of Spica as marking the middle of the zodiac (180° after its putative starting point O° Aries) dates to the 1950s, as far as I know.
        > >
        >
        > Not sure what you mean here by "1950s." Citra-Spica has been traditionally used to determine both the Indian and Greek zodiacs (and the Chinese one also), for example, Brahmagupta and Varahamihira. They generally gave Spica's ecliptic longitude as either 180 or 183 degrees.
        >

        The government-appointed Lahiri commission, butt of our Jyotirved's ire, chose between different extant choices of ayanamsha (distance between the equinox and the il-defined border between thev Pisces and Aries constellations) the one that would put Spica at 180°, or 0° Libra. That is about a degree off its position in the original Babylonian Zodiac, which had Aldebaran by definition at 15° Taurus and hence Spica at ca. 29° Virgo. This means that if you have the moon or another astrologically sensitive point half a degree past Spica, a Lahiri-compliant astrologer will say that you are an industrious and boring Virgo while a Babylonian astrologer will see a pleasant swinging Libra in you.


        > > The sidereal Z depends on the "fixed" stars (which unfortunately for it are not really fixed when considered over the long term) and the sun/earth revolution plane, the tropical Z depends only on the sun/earth cycle without reference to the stars, which could all disappear without affecting the tropical Z. Neither requires the existence of the moon.
        > >
        >
        >
        > Maybe not, but the division of the ecliptic into twelve parts appears related to harmonizing of the lunar months with the solar year, thus, the beginning of the year for astrologers is Caitrasuklapratipada, when the Full Moon is closest to Spica and the Sun correspondingly near the first point of Mesha (Aries).
        >


        The original sidereal division into twelve by the Babyblonians, and then its shift in 2 phases to a tropical division by Euctemon and Hipparchos, was a move *away* from the unmanageable 12-or-13 lunar months, away from the moon. In the most primitive phase of astronomy, the moon was all-important because you could see it; but then they moved in steps to abstract solar astronomy, and the 12-part zodiac was part of that process. The lunar mansions are a more primitive phase. The Hindus got themselves into embarrassing trouble by confusing the two. They grouped the 27 lunar mansions into 12 constellations/months to match the imported Hellenistic Zodiac, and this more or less forced them to adopt the sidereal zodiac at a time when Hellenistic (followed by Arab) astronomers/astrologers were progressing towards the more abstract tropical zodiac.

        This clinging to the precession-disregarding sidereal zodiac is why Hindus today celebrate the winter solstice and spring equinox 24 days late: Makar Sankranti on 14 January and New Year on 14 April. I think the path-breaking Vedic astronomer Dirghatamas is shuddering in disbelief at the mess his successors have made of the Hindu astronomy that he pioneered.

        Kind regards,

        KE
      • Paul Kekai Manansala
        ... The Naksatrakalpa and Santikalpa of the Atharvaveda. I don t know that there is much information of any kind on astrology in the Rgveda. ... We have to
        Message 3 of 14 , May 2, 2009
          --- In IndiaArchaeology@yahoogroups.com, "Koenraad Elst" <koenraad.elst@...> wrote:
          >
          > --- In IndiaArchaeology@yahoogroups.com, "Paul Kekai Manansala" <p.manansala@> wrote:
          > >
          > >
          > > Well, the nakshatras first appear as lunar mansions. Presumably, as found in very many cultures, the conjunction of the Moon with certain stars was used in electional astrology.
          > >
          >
          >
          > That the conjunction with the moon was used, is exactly what I wrote. But they did that merely to locate it and determine the phase of the month, not for purposes of electional astrology (i.e. choosing the time for an entreprise on the basis of presumably beneficial planetary configurations, as is commonly done for Hindu weddings), which is at most a third phase in the development of astrology, after unsystematic omens and systematic horoscopy used for horary or natal astrology. Of none of these is there a trace in the Rg-Veda nor, to my knowledge, in the other Vedas.
          >

          The Naksatrakalpa and Santikalpa of the Atharvaveda. I don't know that there is much information of any kind on astrology in the Rgveda.


          > > Not sure what you mean here by "1950s." Citra-Spica has been traditionally used to determine both the Indian and Greek zodiacs (and the Chinese one also), for example, Brahmagupta and Varahamihira. They generally gave Spica's ecliptic longitude as either 180 or 183 degrees.
          > >
          >
          > The government-appointed Lahiri commission, butt of our Jyotirved's ire, chose between different extant choices of ayanamsha (distance between the equinox and the il-defined border between thev Pisces and Aries constellations) the one that would put Spica at 180°, or 0° Libra. That is about a degree off its position in the original Babylonian Zodiac, which had Aldebaran by definition at 15° Taurus and hence Spica at ca. 29° Virgo.
          >

          We have to distinguish between theory i.e., your Babylonian origin theory, and the facts i.e., the prime year of Indian astrologers begins with the Full Moon month of Caitra, when the Sun ould have been near or conjunct with the star Revati. Hence, the zodiac, which divides the path of the Sun, starts at Revati.

          Regards,
          Paul Kekai Manansala
          Quests of the Dragon and Bird Clan
          http://sambali.blogspot.com/
        • Koenraad Elst
          ... Do these hymns contain *astrology*?! They contain astronomy, viz. the list of asterisms, but do they involve these in a system of divination? In the RV, at
          Message 4 of 14 , May 5, 2009
            --- In IndiaArchaeology@yahoogroups.com, "Paul Kekai Manansala" <p.manansala@...> wrote:
            >
            > --- In IndiaArchaeology@yahoogroups.com, "Koenraad Elst" <koenraad.elst@> wrote:
            > >
            > > That the conjunction with the moon was used, is exactly what I wrote. But they did that merely to locate it and determine the phase of the month, not for purposes of electional astrology (i.e. choosing the time for an entreprise on the basis of presumably beneficial planetary configurations, as is commonly done for Hindu weddings), which is at most a third phase in the development of astrology, after unsystematic omens and systematic horoscopy used for horary or natal astrology. Of none of these is there a trace in the Rg-Veda nor, to my knowledge, in the other Vedas.
            > >
            >
            > The Naksatrakalpa and Santikalpa of the Atharvaveda. I don't know that there is much information of any kind on astrology in the Rgveda.
            >

            Do these hymns contain *astrology*?! They contain astronomy, viz. the list of asterisms, but do they involve these in a system of divination? In the RV, at any rate, there is plenty of astronomy but no trace of astrology.


            >
            > > > Not sure what you mean here by "1950s." Citra-Spica has been traditionally used to determine both the Indian and Greek zodiacs (and the Chinese one also), for example, Brahmagupta and Varahamihira. They generally gave Spica's ecliptic longitude as either 180 or 183 degrees.
            > > >
            > >
            > > The government-appointed Lahiri commission, butt of our Jyotirved's ire, chose between different extant choices of ayanamsha (distance between the equinox and the il-defined border between thev Pisces and Aries constellations) the one that would put Spica at 180°, or 0° Libra. That is about a degree off its position in the original Babylonian Zodiac, which had Aldebaran by definition at 15° Taurus and hence Spica at ca. 29° Virgo.
            > >
            >
            > We have to distinguish between theory i.e., your Babylonian origin theory, and the facts i.e., the prime year of Indian astrologers begins with the Full Moon month of Caitra, when the Sun ould have been near or conjunct with the star Revati. Hence, the zodiac, which divides the path of the Sun, starts at Revati.
            >

            Look at this combination of two typical flaws in Hindu polemic: haughtiness and the appeal to mere words in order to settle factual disputes. So you call the Babylonian origin of the zodiac a mere "theory", while the Indian astrologers' choice of Revati as the beginning of the zodiac is a "fact"? So be it. But the theory of the Babylonian origin is well-documented and has so far never been contradicted by any established fact, in spite of all the Hindu appeals to a "Vedic" origin of astrology.

            It is true that centuries *after* the Babylonians invented the Zodiac and the post-Alexandrine Greeks took it to India, Indians adopted the whole idea of the 12-part zodiac and of horoscopy, and then had the star Revati mark the end and the beginning of the zodiac. This was in the early centuries CE, when tropical and sidereal zodiac nearly coincided. While Hellenistic and then Muslim astrologers followed the new knowledge of precession, abandoned the sidereal and opted for the (more abstract, solar) tropical zodiac, Hindu astrologers made the regressive choice for the sidereal zodiac, which in subsequent centuries would shift away from the tropical zodiac. With the embarrassing consequence that Hindus now celebrate winter solstice and spring equinox 24 days after the proper astronomical dates.

            In ancient divisions of the sky, we can see that the sidereal constellations used were in fact intended to be tropical, i.e. their names referred to seasonal phenomena with which they were then (but due to the precession only temporarily) connected. So, though they used sidereal, it was not as a choice against tropical, no, it was intended to be tropical but they simply didn't know yet that tropical and sidereal were bound to drift apart. As soon as the precession was known, the Greeks sensibly chose for what had been the intended choice of everyone all along, viz. a celestial translation of the sun/earth cycle, i.e. the tropical zodiac. But the Hindus, apparently misguided by their sidereal-based nakshatra calendar, rejected the rational option for the tropical zodiac and regressed towards the sidereal zodiac, becoming the first star-gazers in history (followed only by a handful of 20th-century European neo-siderealists) to choose deliberately against the tropical system.

            So Revati was once close to the spring equinox, and therefore it is still and forever counted as the start of the Hindu zodiac, though it is no longer near the equinox point and has no more connection with it than any other peri-ecliptical star. You posit with much aplomb the trivial fact that Revati has that role in Hindu astrology as if ity proves anything. As if it contradicts anything I have said. The only contradiction is between the choice of Revati (at ca. 20° tropical) for 0° of the sidereal zodiac, as accepted by some Hindu astrologers, and the choice of Spica (at ca. 204° tropical) for 180° of the sidereal zodiac, which was the Lahiri commission's choice. These are mere variations within the sidereal system, which in my opinion was a mistake from the start.

            It is normal to have a calendar start art spring equinox. That is why a system starting with Revati probably dates back to the time when Revati was near the spring equinox, in the first millennium CE. So that's one more argument against a Vedic-age origin for Hindu astrology. In some Vedic and para-Vedic texts, the calendar year starts with Krttika, the Pleiades (as does the Chinese calendar and 28-asterism cycle). That too points to an age when the starting asterism was at the spring equinox point, viz. ca. 24th century BC.

            Incidentally, the presence of Revati in a big conjunction with all the visible planets in February 3102 BC, the supposed start of Kali Yuga and death date of Krishna, makes me suspect that this date, supposedly based on an exceptional stellar configuration, is a back-projection from the first centuries CE, time of the start of Hindu astrology, of Revati's hour of glory and of the editing of the Mahabharata. In 3102 BC, there was nothing special about Revati, neither by magnitude (which is always quite ordinary) nor by position (which was exceptional only briefly, though perpetuated in a system of Hindu astrology frozen in time). Nor is there anythings special about Revati today, except that incomprehending Hindu astrologers mentally perpetuate the exceptional position it had near the equinox in the early days of Hindu astrology.

            Kind regards,

            KE
          • Paul Kekai Manansala
            ... The Atharvaveda is not an astrology work, but there are traces of electional astrology in the hymns. For example: In Magha days are oxen slain, in
            Message 5 of 14 , May 5, 2009
              --- In IndiaArchaeology@yahoogroups.com, "Koenraad Elst" <koenraad.elst@...> wrote:
              >
              > --- In IndiaArchaeology@yahoogroups.com, "Paul Kekai Manansala" <p.manansala@> wrote:
              > >
              > > --- In IndiaArchaeology@yahoogroups.com, "Koenraad Elst" <koenraad.elst@> wrote:

              > > >
              > >
              > > The Naksatrakalpa and Santikalpa of the Atharvaveda. I don't know that there is much information of any kind on astrology in the Rgveda.
              > >
              >
              > Do these hymns contain *astrology*?! They contain astronomy, viz. the list of asterisms, but do they involve these in a system of divination? In the RV, at any rate, there is plenty of astronomy but no trace of astrology.
              >
              >


              The Atharvaveda is not an astrology work, but there are traces of electional astrology in the hymns.

              For example:

              "In Magha days are oxen slain, in Phalgunis they wed the bride."

              -- Atharvaveda xiv, 13



              > > > The government-appointed Lahiri commission, butt of our Jyotirved's ire, chose between different extant choices of ayanamsha (distance between the equinox and the il-defined border between thev Pisces and Aries constellations) the one that would put Spica at 180°, or 0° Libra. That is about a degree off its position in the original Babylonian Zodiac, which had Aldebaran by definition at 15° Taurus and hence Spica at ca. 29° Virgo.
              > > >
              > >
              > > We have to distinguish between theory i.e., your Babylonian origin theory, and the facts i.e., the prime year of Indian astrologers begins with the Full Moon month of Caitra, when the Sun ould have been near or conjunct with the star Revati. Hence, the zodiac, which divides the path of the Sun, starts at Revati.
              > >
              >
              > Look at this combination of two typical flaws in Hindu polemic: haughtiness and the appeal to mere words in order to settle factual disputes.
              >

              Haughtiness may be explained when one accepts one's own theories and beliefs as facts.

              >So you call the Babylonian origin of the zodiac a mere "theory", while the Indian astrologers' choice of Revati as the beginning of the zodiac is a "fact"?
              >

              Certainly, as would any reasonable person.

              > So be it. But the theory of the Babylonian origin is well-documented and has so far never been contradicted by any established fact, in spite of all the Hindu appeals to a "Vedic" origin of astrology.
              >

              No such 'documentation' exists, and in the rest of your long message you offer not a single bit of any 'documentation.' Only speculation.

              For example, what is your evidence that the Babylonians "invented" the zodiac, i.e., the division of the ecliptic into 12 parts?

              Are they the earliest people to have divided the sky or the year into twelve divisions?

              Regards,
              Paul Kekai Manansala
              Quests of the Dragon and Bird Clan
              http://sambali.blogspot.com/
            • Paul Kekai Manansala
              Actually, the verse is also found in the wedding hymn of the Rgveda: The bridal pomp of Surya, which Savitar started, moved along. In Magha days are oxen
              Message 6 of 14 , May 5, 2009
                Actually, the verse is also found in the wedding hymn of the Rgveda:

                 The bridal pomp of Surya, which Savitar started, moved along.
                In Magha days are oxen slain, in Arjunis [Phalgunis] they wed the bride.

                -- Rgveda 10.85.13

                Regards,
                Paul Kekai Manansala
                Quests of the Dragon and Bird Clan
                http://sambali.blogspot.com/
              • Koenraad Elst
                ... (same verse also in RV) This need not indicate astrology. It may simply say that in the season marked by these asterisms, these things are done. In
                Message 7 of 14 , May 6, 2009
                  --- In IndiaArchaeology@yahoogroups.com, "Paul Kekai Manansala" <p.manansala@...> wrote:
                  >
                  > The Atharvaveda is not an astrology work, but there are traces of electional astrology in the hymns.
                  >
                  > For example:
                  >
                  > "In Magha days are oxen slain, in Phalgunis they wed the bride."
                  >
                  > -- Atharvaveda xiv, 13
                  >

                  (same verse also in RV)

                  This need not indicate astrology. It may simply say that in the season marked by these asterisms, these things are done. In Sagittarius days, i.e. late autumn, hunters go out hunting, simply because that is in tune with the annual life cycle (sparing the newborn and their mothers in spring), and not because of the constellations (which now receives the sun mostly after winter solstice); on the contrary, the constellation was named after the seasonal phenomenon of the hunting season.

                  Thus, in many cultures in cold climes, spring is the favoured time for weddings (e.g. premodern China, where chun/spring was also a code word for sex), regardless of stellar positions, simply because it's the right atmosphere. The marking of the wedding season with a constellation, as in the AV verse quoted, would be an instance of the phenomenon mentioned by me, viz. that sidereal terms such as "in Magha days" really refer to a tropical year phase and are only sidereal because the shift between sidereal and tropical was not yet understood, the two were still identified.


                  >
                  > >So you call the Babylonian origin of the zodiac a mere "theory", while the Indian astrologers' choice of Revati as the beginning of the zodiac is a "fact"?
                  > >
                  >
                  > Certainly, as would any reasonable person.
                  >
                  > > So be it. But the theory of the Babylonian origin is well-documented and has so far never been contradicted by any established fact, in spite of all the Hindu appeals to a "Vedic" origin of astrology.
                  > >
                  >
                  > No such 'documentation' exists, and in the rest of your long message you offer not a single bit of any 'documentation.' Only speculation. For example, what is your evidence that the Babylonians "invented" the zodiac, i.e., the division of the ecliptic into 12 parts?
                  >


                  Plenty of such documentation exists. In Babylon in successive documents, we see the development of the zodiac from chaos all the way to its classical form. By contrast, 12-part zodiacs elsewhere are borrowed wholesale, either in pure form (Hellenistic, Hindu) or in somewhat distorted but still recognizable form (Turkic-Chinese). In Hellenistic texts, we see the adoption and further development of Babylonian astrology. Many modern books relate the whole story, the most up-to-date one being "The Dawn of Astrology" by Nicholas Campion, who teaches cultural stronomy at Lampeter U, Wales. 2008. But when Hindutva polemicists are too lazy to inform themselves of certain facts, they pretend these facts don't exist.

                  For more documentation, see the earliest Hindu astrology treatises, which are without exception post-Alexandrine, and give many implicit and explicit acknowledgments of their Yavana/Hellenistic sources.

                  Kind regards,

                  KE
                • Paul Kekai Manansala
                  ... electional astrology in the hymns. ... marked by these asterisms, these things are done. In Sagittarius days, i.e. late autumn, hunters go out hunting,
                  Message 8 of 14 , May 6, 2009
                    --- In IndiaArchaeology@yahoogroups.com, "Koenraad Elst" <koenraad.elst@...> wrote:
                    >
                    > --- In IndiaArchaeology@yahoogroups.com, "Paul Kekai Manansala" <p.manansala@> wrote:
                    > >
                    > > The Atharvaveda is not an astrology work, but there are traces of electional astrology in the hymns.
                    > >
                    > > For example:
                    > >
                    > > "In Magha days are oxen slain, in Phalgunis they wed the bride."
                    > >
                    > > -- Atharvaveda xiv, 13
                    > >
                    >
                    > (same verse also in RV)
                    >
                    > This need not indicate astrology. It may simply say that in the season marked by these asterisms, these things are done. In Sagittarius days, i.e. late autumn, hunters go out hunting, simply because that is in tune with the annual life cycle (sparing the newborn and their mothers in spring), and not because of the constellations (which now receives the sun mostly after winter solstice); on the contrary, the constellation was named after the seasonal phenomenon of the hunting season.
                    >


                    I'm surprised you did not take the time to do more research given that this was just one example, which by the way tradition links with lunar transits and not with the seasonal movements of the Sun.

                    However, there are many other examples from the Atharvaveda.

                    Atharvaveda VI, 110. Expiatory charm for a child born
                    under an unlucky star.  [Bloomfield translation]

                     1. Of yore, (O Agni), thou wast worthy of supplication at the sacrifice; thou wast the priest in olden times, and now anew shall sit (at our sacrifice)! Delight, O Agni, thy own body, and, sacrificing, bring good fortune here to us !

                    2. Him that hath been born under the (constellation) gyeshthaghni ('she that slays the oldest'), or under the vikritau ('they that uproot'), save thou from being torn up by the root by Yama (death) ! May he (Agni) guide him across all misfortunes to long life, to a life of a hundred autumns !

                    3. On a tiger (-like) day the hero was born ; born under a (good) constellation he becometh a mighty hero. Let him not slay, when he grows up, his father, let him not injure the mother that hath begotten him!

                    The constellations mentioned are Jyestha and Mulabharani.


                    And another example, this time with translation and notes from Lanman et al. regarding rituals for the disease ksetriya:

                    Atharvaveda 7

                    3. What shines down yonder, like a four-sided roof (chadis), therewith we make all the ksetriya disappear from thy limbs.

                    In our edition, Una in c should be thia, as read by nearly all the samfiita-mss. (all save our P.M.), and by SPP. The sense of a, b is obscure to the comm., as to us ; he guesses first that it is " the deer-shaped thing extended in the moon's disk," or else " a deer's skin stretched on the ground " ; chadis is " the mat of grass with which a house is covered." Weber takes it as a constellation; Grill (mistranslating paksa by " post"), as the gazelle himself set up on his four legs, with his horns for roof ! If a constellation, it might be the Arab " manzil" 7, f, i), ir Aquarii, which its shape and name connect with a tent: see Surya-Siddhanta, note to viii.9 (under 25th asterism); this is not very far from the stars mentioned in the next verse [_X and u Scorpionis].

                    4. The two blessed stars named Unfasteners (vicrt), that are yonder in the sky — let them unfasten of the ksetriya the lowest, the highest fetter.

                    The verse is nearly identical with ii. 8. I above, which see |_b recurs at vi. 121. 3 b; v. Schroeder gives the Katha version of a, b, Zwei Ass., p. 15, and Tubinger Katha-hss., p. 75 J. Ppp. makes it in part yet more nearly so, by beginning with ud agatam bhaga- vatt, but reads in c vi ksctriyath t-va 'bhy ana^e |_cf. our 6 bj; and its end and part of vs. 6 (which next follows) are defaced.

                    5. The waters verily [are] remedial, the waters disease-expelling, the waters remedial of everything; let them release thee from ksetriya.

                    The first three padas are RV. x. 137. 6 a,b,c, save that RV. has sdrvasya in c; but vi. 91.3 below represents the same verse yet more closely.

                    6. If from the drink (? dsuti) that was being made the ksetriyd hath come upon (vi-ac) thee, I know the remedy of it; I make the ksetriyd disappear from thee.

                    The word asnil is of doubtful and disputed sense ; Weber says " infusio seminis " |_as immediate cause of the " Erb-iibel," which is Weber's version of ksetriyA\; Grill, "gekochter Zaubertrank"; the comm., dra-inbhutam annain 'liquidized food.'

                    7. In the fading-out of the asterisms, in the fading-out of the dawns also, from us [fade] out all that is of evil nature, fade out (apa-vas) the ksetriya.


                     The "unfasteneners" are the same stars mentioned in 6.110 i.e. "vikritau."

                    I can give more examples but it is clear that the asterisms have astrological significance in the Atharvaveda.

                     
                    >
                    > >
                    > > >So you call the Babylonian origin of the zodiac a mere "theory", while the Indian astrologers' choice of Revati as the beginning of the zodiac is a "fact"?
                    > > >
                    > >
                    > > Certainly, as would any reasonable person.
                    > >
                    > > > So be it. But the theory of the Babylonian origin is well-documented and has so far never been contradicted by any established fact, in spite of all the Hindu appeals to a "Vedic" origin of astrology.
                    > > >
                    > >
                    > > No such 'documentation' exists, and in the rest of your long message you offer not a single bit of any 'documentation.'  Only speculation. For example, what is your evidence that the Babylonians "invented" the zodiac, i.e., the division of the ecliptic into 12 parts?
                    > >
                    >
                    >
                    > Plenty of such documentation exists. In Babylon in successive documents, we see the development of the zodiac from chaos all the way to its classical form. By contrast, 12-part zodiacs elsewhere are borrowed wholesale, either in pure form (Hellenistic, Hindu) or in somewhat distorted but still recognizable form (Turkic-Chinese). In Hellenistic texts, we see the adoption and further development of Babylonian astrology. Many modern books relate the whole story, the most up-to-date one being "The Dawn of Astrology" by Nicholas Campion, who teaches cultural stronomy at Lampeter U, Wales. 2008. But when Hindutva polemicists are too lazy to inform themselves of certain facts, they pretend these facts don't exist.
                    >


                    Sorry, you simply make claims without providing anything that resembles documentation.

                    In fact, no actual Babylonian document mentions a division of the ecliptic into 12 parts!  There are various star lists of different quantities, which give nodal points but none of twelve equidistant parts.  The Dendera zodiac in Egypt is the oldest one known in the West possibly dating to 50 BCE.

                    The Chinese division of the sky into twelve parts is multi-fold.  The division into Jupiter stations which is applied both to the celestial equator and to the ecliptic at times, dates at least to the 4th century BCE according to the dating of the Chi ni tzu to the late Zhou Dynasty.  However, it is based on the mean cycle of Jupiter not the Sun.

                    The division of the ecliptic into twelve solar periods, which are again divided into 24 solar fortnights, is also dated at least to the late Zhou. 

                    However, the Chinese division is purely tropical and has no connection with stars.

                    The obvious problem with your argument is that the zodiac used in India and Greece definitely is linked with the stars.  These constellations were known long before the development of natal astrology or the equal division of the ecliptic into twelve parts. 

                    Very many cultures developed sidereal years because initially they believed the Sun's transit and the seasons were permanently linked.  Early observers did not know about the precession.

                    Therefore the seasonal year was a natural latter development. 

                    Natal astrology as used in India is not based though on the tropical year!  The idea is that the stars of the ecliptic equate to the Purusa, the cosmic body mirrored in microcosm by the native (person born).

                    Regards,
                    Paul Kekai Manansala
                    Quests of the Dragon and Bird Clan 







                  • Paul Kekai Manansala
                    Let me add a few more reasons to show that the Greek zodiac was linked to the sidereal and not the tropical year. 1. The Greek zodiac is explicitly a division
                    Message 9 of 14 , May 7, 2009
                      Let me add a few more reasons to show that the Greek zodiac was linked to the sidereal and not the tropical year.

                      1. The Greek zodiac is explicitly a division of the ecliptic, i.e. the path of the Sun around the stars. The tropical year does not represent a full revolution of the Sun, i.e. the earth around the Sun.

                      2. If the Greeks were intent on tropical astrology they would not attempt to calculate the position of the planets using the tropical year! Planetary positions only make sense against the background of the stars not in relation to the declination of the Sun. The fact is that Ptolemy, although aware of Hipparchus theory of the precession, does not seem to have bought the idea. Therefore, he attempts to ascertain the sidereal position of the planets without correcting for precession.

                      3. Ptolemy very clearly details the stars associated with each sign in the zodiac. This does not make sense in tropical astrology! So if Mars is calculated to be in Sagittarius, it means that the planet supposedly has the stars of that constellation in the background.

                      4. When the Arabs adopted both Indian and Greek astrology, they also adopted the Indian theory of either a libration or a full revolution (Bhaskara, Munjala) of the equinoxes, clearly indicating that they were concerned about the sidereal position of the Sun and planets. Not only that but some European astrologer-astronomers did the same including Arzael and Alphonsus copying directly however the Arab astronomers like Albategnius, and culminating in the findings of Copernicus.

                      Regards,
                      Paul Kekai Manansala
                      Quests of the Dragon and Bird Clan
                      http://sambali.blogspot.com
                    • jyotirved
                      Dr. Koenraad Elst ji, Namaskar! I have already replied the points raised by Shri Manansala about the so called sidereal and tropical zodiacs. Yr views that
                      Message 10 of 14 , May 8, 2009
                        Dr. Koenraad Elst ji,
                        Namaskar!
                        I have already replied the points raised by Shri Manansala about the so called sidereal and tropical zodiacs.
                         
                        Yr views that "The nakshatras are sidereal because they consist of stars and are strictly unrelated to the phases of the "tropical" year cycle" also are not based on astronomy but on premises of jyotishis!
                         
                        Each "Nakshara" is supposed to be a group of stars but it is doubtful that they were named on the basis of the "appearances" of different groups of stars by Vedic Rishis, as against the names of Babylonian constellations like Aries, Taurus etc. in the hoary past. For example,  the names like Svati, Vishakha, Anuradha etc. do not have any possibility of resembling any figures!  There are some stories about "Mrigavyadha" (Mirgashira) nakshatra in the Vedic lore. Similarly, Krttikas are supposed to be the foster mother of Kartikeya.  The Pauranic lore also tells us that the twenty-seven nakshatras are the copnsorts of Moon who had had excessive infatuation for Rohini and therefore stayed with her for a much longer time than the apportioned one!
                        The remaining twenty-six wives complained to their father Dakshya Prajapati, who cursed the Moon with "kshyaya-roga", i.e. tuberclosis--and the Moon became so "lean" that it was almost invisible!!  Later, on his pleadings and the interventiion of all his consorts, Daksha Prajapati yielded and amelioraed that curse by making the Moon waxing and wanning!
                         
                        From this anecdote it appears that in earlier days, the nakshatras were of unequal division/sizes and Rohini was much larger than other nakshatras, with the result that the Moon was "seen" as taking much longer in traversing that nakshatra than others.
                        Bhaskara-I is also said to have recommended an unequal nakshatra division, as advocated by the Vedas, since we find references to twenty-eight nakshatras, including Abhijit at several places.
                         
                        Regarding zodiac being sidereal or tropical, I have made it very clear several times already that zodiac is actually an imaginary circle comprising imaginary animals!  And those imaginary animals are nothing but groups of stars, as per the Babylonian astronomers.  It was only after Maya the mlechha introduced those constellations in the garb of rashis (astrological signs) in India through his Surya Sidhanta, that nakshatras got entwined with those very constellations!  And ever since then India has been reeling under that delirium of nakshatras-vis-a-vis-rashis, thanks to charlatans like Varahamihira etc.  Nakasharas have actually nothing to do with Greek constellations and thus Mesha, Vrihsa etc. rashis.
                        So the premise that nakshatras are sidereal because they are groups of stars is itself fallacious since the zodiac itself is a conglomeration of constellations which themselves are conglomeatons of stars!
                         
                        <The moon has nothing definitional to do with it; tropical astrologers consider the moon's position in the tropical signs. But in practice, the moon does have something to do with it: the present practice of astrologers, both sidereal and tropical, to consider the sun's position *in* a zodiacal sector or constellation involves geometrical calculations, as the sun is never seen against the constellations.>
                         
                        Regarding the Tropical year cycle, a year is a duration of the revolution of the earth around the sun via the ecliptic!  And Ecliptic itself is a fictitious (imaginary!) circle, which astronomers call "Apparent path of the earth and planets around the sun".  It was next to impossible in ancient times to find the duration of a Sidereal year, since the sun could not be seen in conjunction with any star!  Sidereal year is actually the duration of a Tropical year plus the time taken by the sun to cover the annual precessional arc of about 50."28  (these days).  On the other hand, it is much easier to determine the duration of a Tropical year by means of "poles" which the astronomers called gnomon in ancient times.
                        We cannot have a lunar year, on the other hand.  It is actualy the increment/decrement of twelve solar (Tropical) months over the synodic lunar months that accounts for adhika or kshyaha masa.  It has again nothing to do with "zodiacal sectors", since the real Hindu calendar is unrelated to constellations.
                        Let me remind everybody here that all this mess about Ayanamsha is the creation of Surya Sidhanta by Maya the mlechha!  As per his own statements that Makar Sankranti is another name of the start of the six months of Uttarayana and Karka Sankranti another name of the start of six months of Dakshinayana, etc. it is clear that he never had any idea about either precession or about any sidereal year, since all his definitions are confined to a Tropical year.
                        However, as ill luck would have it, he gave the duration of a year, in his calculations, more by 3.25 seconds than even the sidereal year!  That created the mess of Sayana versus nirayana and Troical zodiac versus Sideral zodiac, since Jyotishis like Varahamihira, instead of going to the bottom of the confusion, took Maya the mlechha's words as gospel truth  as they were the words of Surya Bhagwan according to them. No Indian astronomer (read jyotishi) had any idea about precession till at least 15th century AD, and all along they have been making efforts to make their calendars/panchangas subservient to the Surya Sidhanta calculations instead of the Vedas or even the Puranas!
                        <The choice of Spica as marking the middle of the zodiac (180° after its putative starting point O° Aries) dates to the 1950s, as far as I know. It shows the hollowness of the sidereal zodiac: the star marking the balance of the Zodiac (Libra, the middle), is actually the main star of Virgo! >
                         
                        Chitra-paksha ayanamsha is actually a creation of N.C. Lahiri!  In order to sell his "Lahiri's Indian Ephemeris" and "Vishudha Sidhanta Panjika", he wanted an Ayanamsha that was nearest to Grahalaghava in around 1940, so that there was not a "violent break" from  Grahalaghava Sankrantis that the people had become addicted to!  As such, he "invented" an imaginary point by way of the VE that was opposite to Star Chitra in 285 AD!  It defies imagination actually that if he really wanted "sidereal" longitudes, and if he was so enamoured of Chitra, why did he not take Chitra as the starting point of the "zodiac" and why did he have to find the devious ways of going back in time by about 2000 years and then selecting the VE of 285 AD as the starting point of the "zodiac" since it was not conjunct any Star at that point of time!  If at all any Star could be the starting point, it should have been Revati (Zeta Piscium) since the Surya Sidhanta also had said, "Bhaganam to paushanantam"---the "Bhagana starts from the end of Revati division".  This is what Tilak had suggested to the Saha Calendar Reform Committee and we do have a panchanga named Talaka Panchanga from Maharashtra with Revati Star as the starting point of Rashsi.  That is known as Eaivata-paksha ayanamsha! That, however, does not mean that that that Ayanamsha has any scientfic basis, but it would have been like choosing the lesser of two evils! 
                        It is, therefore, no surprise that "Vedic astrologers" can make correct predictions from Chitra-paksha ayanamsha (read Lahiri Ayanamsha) since they can make correct predictions only from incorrect data!
                         
                        <"Luni-solar" is not a type of zodiac but a type of calendar, viz. one that combines lunar months of 29+ days with the solar year of 365+ days by adjusting the number of months (12 or 13) so as to keep pace with the solar year.>
                        Yes, u r right!  Luni-solar is a type of calendar, and we must peg them to Vedic Tropical months like Madhu, Madhava etc. instead of Lahiris and Ramanas and Tilaks and Chandraharis and Kharegats and Yukteshwars and so on, to name just a few of them!
                        <If there were no moon, there would be no luni-solar calendar, but there would still be sidereal and tropical zodiacs. >
                        The "if" in this sentence is really a big IF!  We may as well say "If there were no sun, there would be no earth -- at least the human population including u and me".  However, yr postulate "but there would still be sidereal and tropical zodiacs" is again wishful thinking since the zodiac is neither sidereal nor tropical, but just a pure and unadulterated zodiac! 
                        It is only because of the quibblings/confusion of sidereal and tropical zodiacs that the Vedic calendar has been the real casulaty! 
                        With regards,
                        A K Kaul
                         
                         
                         
                         
                        --- In IndiaArchaeology@yahoogroups.com, "Koenraad Elst" <koenraad.elst@...> wrote:
                        >
                        > > > 1.
                        There is a concrete evidence that they were following sidereal  zodiac of 27  nakshatras >
                        > > >
                        > >
                        > > The
                        nakshatras are definitely sidereal and not "tropical" as they are related to the movement of the Moon and not the Sun.
                        > >
                        >
                        > The
                        nakshatras are sidereal because they consist of stars and are strictly unrelated to the phases of the "tropical" year cycle. The moon has nothing definitional to do with it; tropical astrologers consider the moon's position in the tropical signs. But in practice, the moon does have something to do with it: the present practice of astrologers, both sidereal and tropical, to consider the sun's position *in* a zodiacal sector or constellation involves geometrical calculations, as the sun is never seen against the constellations. That is why the ancients considered the sun's connection with a constellation through the latter's heliacal rising (first visibility at dawn after some weeks of invisibility under the sun's rays), as the Babylonians did, or through the latter's opposition to the sun and its containing the full moon, as practised in India. That is why presently the month named after the star Magha, with which the sun is conjunct in summer, falls in winter, when the full moon conjoins the star Magha (Regulus).
                        >
                        >

                        > > The zodiac
                        is neither purely sidereal or tropical but rather luni-solar in origin with the year starting on the Full Moon, or more accurately the culmination,  closest to the star Spica.
                        > >
                        >
                        > The choice of Spica as
                        marking the middle of the zodiac (180° after its putative starting point O° Aries) dates to the 1950s, as far as I know. It shows the hollowness of the sidereal zodiac: the star marking the balance of the Zodiac (Libra, the middle), is actually the main star of Virgo! "Luni-solar" is not a type of zodiac but a type of calendar, viz. one that combines lunar months of 29+ days with the solar year of 365+ days by adjusting the number of months (12 or 13) so as to keep pace with the solar year. If there were no moon, there would be no luni-solar calendar, but there would still be sidereal and tropical zodiacs. The sidereal Z depends on the "fixed" stars (which unfortunately for it are not really fixed when considered over the long term) and the sun/earth revolution plane, the tropical Z depends only on the sun/earth cycle without reference to the stars, which could all disappear without affecting the tropical Z. Neither requires the existence of the moon.
                        >
                        > Kind regards,
                        >
                        >
                        KE
                        >
                      • Paul Kekai Manansala
                        ... Your response it too emotional and xenophobic to merit any response beyond the currently existing thread, which will deal with most of the issues that you
                        Message 11 of 14 , May 12, 2009
                          --- In IndiaArchaeology@yahoogroups.com, "jyotirved" <jyotirved@...> wrote:
                          >
                          > Dr. Koenraad Elst ji,
                          > Namaskar!
                          > I have already replied the points raised by Shri Manansala about the so called sidereal and tropical zodiacs.
                          >
                          > Yr views that "The nakshatras are sidereal because they consist of stars and are strictly unrelated to the phases of the "tropical" year cycle" also are not based on astronomy but on premises of jyotishis!
                          >


                          Your response it too emotional and xenophobic to merit any response beyond the currently existing thread, which will deal with most of the issues that you bring up anyway.

                          However, doesn't make any difference whether "mlecchas" were involved or not in the current calendar or not. There is nothing all that great about "Vedic" stuff, dude!

                          Regards,
                          Paul Kekai Manansala
                          Quests of the Dragon and Bird Clan
                          http://sambali.blogspot.com/
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