Jyotisha or Jyotishya is derived from the Sanskrit word Jyotia, which means "light or heavenly body," and ish is derived from Isvara or God. Also called Hindu Astrology, Indian Astrology, and Vedic Astrology, Jyotishya is the traditional Hindu astrological system. One of the earliest known Vedic writings on astronomy is The Vedanga Jyotisha. Some scholars are of the opinion that Hellenistic factors influenced the astrology practiced in the Indian subcontinent; however, this is a point of heated discussion, and other studies indicate that Jyotisha evolved independently, though it may have crossed paths with Greek astrology.
Astrological Elements of Vedic Astrology
Rashi (Zodiac Signs) - The Nirayana, or sidereal zodiac, is a 360-degree illusory belt that, like the Syana, or tropical zodiac, is separated into 12 equal sections. Each segment (of 30 degrees) is referred to as a sign or rasi (a Sanskrit word that means "part"). The technique of quantification differs between the Vedic (Jyotia) and Western Zodiacs. The most apparent disparity between Jyotishya and Western Astrology is the systems that are used to evaluate the movement of the planets. Jyotia primarily utilizes the sidereal zodiac (in which stars are seen as a constant, immovable phenomenon against which the movement of the planets can be studied), while most Western astrology utilizes the tropical zodiac wherein the movement of the planets is analyzed against the position of the Sun on the spring equinox.
Nakshatras (Lunar Houses) - The nakshatras, also known as lunar houses in Hindu astrology, are 27 equal distinctions of the night sky, each distinguished by an eminent star. Historical (medieval) Hindu astrology listed 27 or 28 nakshatras. The Abhieka Nakatra is the most important, as it is regarded as the ruler of the other nakshatras. Idolizing and acquiring favor with this nakshatra is said to grant the ability to rectify all other nakshatras, and it is important in inferential astrology and helps in minimizing Karma.
Dasas (Planetary periods) - The word Dasha (planetary period) means the state of being,' and it is presumed that the Dasha directs a person's state of being. The Dasha system indicates which planets are said to have become especially active during the Dasa period. There are various Dasha systems, each with its own convenience and field known. There are Dasas of grahas (planets) and Dasas of the Rashis (zodiac signs).
Grahas (Planets) - The nine planets used in Hindu astrology are referred to as the Navagraha. The Navagraha are seen to be powers that dictate or eclipse human minds and judgment, hence the term graha. When the grahas are active in their Dasas or periodicities, they are said to have special authority over people and events. Planets are thought to represent significant details such as profession, marriage, and longevity.
Gocharas (transits) - A natal chart depicts the grahas' positions at the time of birth. Since then, the grahas have kept moving around the zodiac, engaging with the grahas of the natal chart. This time of contact is known as gochara (Sanskrit for "transit").
Yogas (planetary combinations) - Yoga is a fusion of planets positioned in particular relation to one another in Hindu astronomy. There are three Yogas, namely, Raja Yoga, Dhana Yoga and Sanyasa Yoga.
Bhavas (houses) - The Bhava Chakra (Sanskrit: 'division' 'wheel') is split into houses in the Hindu Jataka or Janam Kundali or natal chart. Each house is affiliated with a karaka (Sanskrit:'significator') planet that can change the perception of that house. These are an integral feature of any horoscopic analysis because the Bhavas, or 'states of being,' personalize the Rasi/ Rashis to the native, and each Ri/ Rashi, in addition to denoting its real nature, uncovers its effect on the person depending on the Bhava inhabited.
Drishti - Drishti is an aspect of a whole house. Grahas can only cast forward aspects, with the farthest aspect being the most powerful. The concept of Drishti (aspect) was established on the premise of a warring army of planetary systems as deity and demon.
Q1. How does one find out their Rashis?
Vedic Astrology records one’s Rashi according to their moon sign, the name of the zodiac position of the moon during the time of their birth.
Q2. Who is regarded as the Father of Vedic Astrology?
A sage by the name of Bhrigu, a member of the Saptarishi or Seven sages, is believed to have invented Vedic Astrology. Due to this, he is also widely known as the Father of Vedic Astrology.
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