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Thread: The Calendar

  1. #1
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    The Calendar

    Vannakkam: This thread is both a comment and a question.

    I realised (again) how the western calendar is another infiltration into SD, one which we are barely aware of anymore, but still an indicator of how we've been infiltrated by an alien belief system.

    Comments: The Sunday Hindu is one example. Hindu temples in places that have small populations open on Sundays, the western systems holy day.

    Monday is Siva's day, or other 'days' are dedicated to particular Gods. How can this be? Surely it is some sort of syncretic adaptation, not originally there, unless somehow the Vedas did have a 7 day time division, which I highly doubt.

    Questions: Other than the obvious solstices and equinoxes, and the moons and nakshatras, was the ancient calendar divided in any other consistent way, and is there a site that anyone knows of that explains it? I know that for example, there are Tamil months that roughly correspond to western months. Are there other calendars?

    When and how, historically, did the infiltration happen?

    Does anyone here use a Hindu calendar primarily, or just for festival dates, and the like?

    What are some effects, negative, or positive, of using an alien calendar?

    Aum Namasivaya

  2. #2

    Re: The Calendar

    हरिः ओम्


    Namaste EM,


    What a great topic; I am also fascinated by this aspect of history. I truly believe that the way in which we regulate
    our time effects our very perception of time.


    To my knowledge we have 7 days one for each luminous body in the celestial plane, visible with the human eye;
    I had thought that they are arranged in order of the speed that those body's appear to move across our skys. But
    as I think about it I am not certain of this.

    I suppose the Hindu calendar would be comprised essentially of the tithi Of which there are 15 plus the new moon,
    and of course the full moon. But these don't change every day it depends which is on the horizon at sunrise, I believe.
    Time is a very local measure, as is necessary for Jyoti
    study.

    I will be fascinated to learn more of this intriguing subject.



    praṇāma

    mana


    ॐ नमः शिवाय
    Aum Namaḥ Śivāya
    Last edited by Mana; 10 June 2012 at 01:18 PM.
    8i8

  3. #3

    Re: The Calendar

    That is a great question.

    I never use a Hindu Calendar, I check the Ashram and Temple website for holidays.

    My temple doesn't have anything on Sundays, I really wish that they did because I can rarely go to Pujas anymore because of my new job.

    Maya

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    Re: The Calendar

    Vannakkam: Most festivals, I believe, are on the nakshatra day that best corresponds. a few people I know even celebrate birthdays this way ... on the nakshatra date that is closest to the western calendar date ... not really sure though. Our temple's annual festival is definitely that way. This year the kumbabhishekham is July 5, a Thursday on the western calendar.

    My personal temple attendance date is rarely on a Sunday, as the crowd disrupts from worship of the inner variety.

    This http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Tamil_calendar did help my understanding a bit. My wife (and sometimes me) attends pradosha days at the temple here. Seems more appropriate.

    Aum Namasivaya

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    Re: The Calendar : pacāga

     
    hari o
    ~~~~~~

    namasté

    First let me offer my opinion... the western calendar became easier to use for the common person, hence its adaptation. Also some of the more influencial rulers ~ordained~ calendars into use, and hence the longivity of the western approach. Albiet useful , yet less robust.

    Now enter the vedic approach: pañcāñga ( or 5 limbs, pañca + āñga ) is the jyotiṣh and/or vedic method of organizing, understanding and using natural cycles for the benefit of timing events, actions,( and non-action), and the like.

    What are the five limbs ?
    • tithi - lunar day
    • karaṇa - 1st and 2nd halfs of the lunar day
    • vāra - the day of the week ( each owned by a graha)
    • nakṣatra - lunar constilation some like to call asterism ( we use 27, or 28 with abjijit owned by viṣṇu)
    • yoga - are unions ; there are 27 of them.
    These 5 limbs are linked to the 5 tattva's we are familuar with: earth, water, fire, air and space. When we say earth we mean 'solid' , with form. So earth is dirt, a clump of dirt is a solid. Yet too a bar of steel is solid, a rock is solid. Water means fluid and can include all fluids we know of other then water. Like that, the same with air ( all kinds of gas) and fire other then flame is included e.g. heat, combustion, etc.

    So, this pañcāñga is quite useful and tells us more then just the day (vāra):

    • tithi - fruition of desires; the influence of jala (water) tattva (element)
    • karaṇa - acomplishments; the influence of pṛthivī (earth) tattva
    • vāra - the strength to perform ; the influence of agni (fire) tattva
    • nakṣatra - removal of obsticles or wrong doing; influenced by vāya(air) tattva
    • yoga - this sambandha suggests the relationship with people around you ; the influence of ākāśa (space) tattva
    Few people are absolutely excellent with using these 5 components ( this includes me). Practice, study and charting is the best place to begin. In this modern time, it seems that many programs can tell us when these events may occur ( tithi, yoga, etc) , but what they mean and how to apply them to the native is lacking. Yet many-a-farmer have used a simular ( but not as sophisticated) approach, called the farmers alminac. At least it viewed the connection with the environment and the stars to consider proper times and actions for planting or harvesting.

    praām
    यतस्त्वं शिवसमोऽसि
    yatastvaṁ śivasamo'si
    because you are identical with śiva

    _

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    Re: The Calendar

    Namaste.

    Quote Originally Posted by Maya3 View Post
    That is a great question.

    I never use a Hindu Calendar, I check the Ashram and Temple website for holidays.

    My temple doesn't have anything on Sundays, I really wish that they did because I can rarely go to Pujas anymore because of my new job.

    Maya
    I check the temple calendar also. I don't trust myself otherwise.

    On Sundays my temple has a 9:30 am Sri Guruvayurappan abhishekam, a 12 noon aarati with prasadam, and 6:45 pm Seeveli w/ Mangala aarati.

    I went to the 12 noon service. Nect week, perhaps, I'll go to the 6:45 pm Seeveli.

    There is some kind of service 7 days/week.
    śivasya hridayam viṣṇur viṣṇoscha hridayam śivaḥ

  7. #7

    Re: The Calendar : pacāga

    हरिः ओम्


    Namaste,


    Thank you yajvan for this illumination, Until now I had only related the pañcāñga to the bhava and jataka astrology.
    How might one proceed in order to start charting time ones self, what would you recomend?

    It is all rather daunting when one arrives at a fully evolved system seeing it in its totality before understanding its component parts and origin.



    Thank you kindly.


    praṇāma

    mana


    ॐ नमः शिवाय
    Aum Namaḥ Śivāya
    Last edited by Mana; 12 June 2012 at 12:31 PM.
    8i8

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    Re: The Calendar : pacāga

    hari o
    ~~~~~~

    namasté

    Quote Originally Posted by yajvan View Post
     
    Now enter the vedic approach: pañcāñga ( or 5 limbs, pañca + āñga ) is the jyotiṣh and/or vedic method of organizing, understanding and using natural cycles for the benefit of timing events, actions,( and non-action), and the like.

    What are the five limbs ?
    • tithi - lunar day
    • karaṇa - 1st and 2nd halfs of the lunar day
    • vāra - the day of the week ( each owned by a graha)
    • nakṣatra - lunar constellation some like to call asterism ( we use 27, or 28 with abjijit owned by viṣṇu)
    • yoga - are unions ; there are 27 of them.
    These 5 limbs are linked to the 5 tattva's we are familuar with: earth, water, fire, air and space. When we say earth we mean 'solid' , with form. So earth is dirt, a clump of dirt is a solid. Yet too a bar of steel is solid, a rock is solid. Water means fluid and can include all fluids we know of other then water. Like that, the same with air ( all kinds of gas) and fire other then flame is included e.g. heat, combustion, etc.
    There is more to this story when we talk of the division of time. The nārada saṃhitā informs us of the following:

    brāhmaṃ daivaṃ ca mānuṣaṃ pitryā sauraṃ ca sāvanam |
    cāndramārkṣaṃ gurormānamiti mānani vai nava |'dhyāya 3|1||
    This says,

    there are 9 measures ( or considerations) of years belonging brahmā¹ , daiva ( or deva-s , some write devatā) , manuṣa ( of man) , pitrya (ancestors, those that have past) , saura ( the sun) , sāvana ( sunrise to sunrise), cāndra ( moon) , ārkṣaṃ (nakṣatra or lunar constellations), and guru-māna ( jupiter's cycle or measure).

    We can look at each of the nine and see the measures that are put in place.



    praām

    words
    brahmā - note that brahmā for saguṇa brahman , and brahma is used for the nirguṇa brahman
    māna - measure; dimension , size; opinion , notion , conception
    Last edited by yajvan; 08 July 2012 at 02:22 PM.
    यतस्त्वं शिवसमोऽसि
    yatastvaṁ śivasamo'si
    because you are identical with śiva

    _

  9. #9
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    Re: The Calendar : pacāga

    hari o
    ~~~~~~

    namasté

    Quote Originally Posted by yajvan View Post
    There is more to this story when we talk of the division of time. The nārada saṃhitā informs us of the following:

    brāhmaṃ daivaṃ ca mānuṣaṃ pitryā sauraṃ ca sāvanam |
    cāndramārkṣaṃ gurormānamiti mānani vai nava |'dhyāya 3|1||
    So, we have these 9 divisions of time ( saṃvat or śaka or kāla)¹.
    • brahmā saṃvat
    • daiva saṃvat
    • manuṣa saṃvat
    • pitrya saṃvat
    • saura saṃvat
    • sāvana saṃvat
    • cāndra saṃvat
    • ārkṣaṃ saṃvat
    • guru-māna saṃvat

    Let's look at the two highlighted, saura & sāvana which are a function of the sun.
    saura saṃvat - comes from sūrya or sūra; from the sun.
    sāvana saṃvat - corresponding to the solar time (day , month , year)
    saura saṃvat
    1 saura day = the time sūrya ( the sun) takes to move/traverse one degree (1&#186 of the zodiac (rāśicakra).
    • 30 saura days = 1 saura month
    • 12 saura months = 1 saura year.
    Hence we can easily deduce then that 1 saura year = 360 saura days = 360º or a perfect circle. The implcation is very interesting. It does not matter how many hours there are in a day, as we are measuring degrees. As the earth grows older it slows down¹, so a day may take 25 hours to complete this 1º or rotation. Yet this 1º remains consistent.

    sāvana saṃvat
    sāvana is the duration of a full day from one sunrise to the next. This seems quite useful and practical from my point of view. Note then in this system we do not start a new day at 12 mid-night, that is common in todays world. Many jyotiṣh calculations are very much concerned with the birth of a new day, which begins with the rise of the sun.

    Let's say today is July 9th. We come into the evening hours and we pass 12 midnight and a person is born at 3 AM in the morning.
    In this situation the birth day is still considered July 9th, as a new sunrise has not taken place and remains the 9th of July. This is how most jyotiṣa-s calculate one's birth.

    The great jyotiṣa Varāha-mihira ācārya says when the upper limb of the sun is in view on the horizon, this is sunrise. Some others consider the central portion of the sun on the horizon. Why would one care? The difference is roughly 1 min 15 sec.
    That change influences the position of the lagna and higher level varga charts ( 1/30th division, 1/60th division) and changes the positions of the graha's in these vargas ( or divisional charts).

    Now there is some very interesting details on how the ancients came to define a sāvana day and a sāvana year. I am still studying this information and will share what I know.

    The time of a sāvana day is based upon the time taken to voice guruvākṣara which means a long ( guru - long by nature or position ) syllable (akṣara), sometimes called dīrga - held for a long time and applied to vowels.
    • 10 guruvākṣara = 1 prāṇa ( or breath)
      • this period is 1/6th of a vināḍikā ( equaling 24 seconds)
        = 4 seconds ( 1/6 x 24 seconds = 4 seconds)
    • 6 prāṇa = 1 vināḍikā or 24 seconds
    • 60 vināḍikā = 1 nāḍī = a measure of time = 1/2 muhūrta ( 1/2 x 48 minutes = 24 minutes) (1 muhūrta = 1/30th part of a day)
    • 60 nāḍī = 1 sāvana day or 60 x 24 minutes = 1,440 minutes = 24 hours
    • 30 sāvana days = 1 sāvana month
    • 12 sāvana months = 1 sāvana saṃvata
    Let's see if our numbers match to what the wise say a person breathes during the day. They say we breathe 21,600 a day.
    One breath or prāṇa = 4 seconds. There are 1,440 minutes in a day x 60 seconds = 86,400 seconds in 1 day. 86,400 seconds divided by 4 seconds per breath = 21,600 breaths per day.

    There are 21,600 haṁsa-s ( or breaths ) in a day and night || 11... haṁsa upaniṣad

    praām


    words
    • saṃvat is a contraction of saṃvatsara, meaning a year ; some may use śaka ( its 3rd derivative) also meaning year;
      others too may use kāla ( 2nd derivative)rooted (√) in 'kal' 'to calculate or enumerate ' i.e. a fixed or right point of time , a space of time , time (in general)
    • earth slows down - the oceans create title drag; the sun's change of mass slows the earths rotation by ~ 1.24 ms/year; gravitational radiation adds just a small amount = to the decay in the orbit of about 1×10−15 meters per day or roughly the diameter of a proton.
    • Types of years one may see today ( just a few)
      • julian - 365.25 days
      • sidereal - 365.256363004 mean solar days
      • tropical - 365.24219 days
      • anomalistic - 365.259636 days
    • sources: portions and parts from sūrya-siddhānta , Sanjay Rath teachings, Chandrashekhr Sharma writings.
      Tata Institute of Fundamental Research, personal jyotish library and studies.
    Last edited by yajvan; 09 July 2012 at 08:13 PM.
    यतस्त्वं शिवसमोऽसि
    yatastvaṁ śivasamo'si
    because you are identical with śiva

    _

  10. #10
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    Re: The Calendar

    hari o
    ~~~~~~

    namasté

    9 divisions of time ( saṃvat or śaka or kāla or varṣa).
    • brahmā saṃvat
    • daiva saṃvat
    • manuṣa saṃvat
    • pitrya saṃvat
    • saura saṃvat
    • sāvana saṃvat
    • cāndra saṃvat
    • ārkṣaṃ saṃvat
    • guru-māna saṃvat
    Lets look at cāndra saṃvat.
    • cāndra is the moon ; it is from candrá meaning lunar ; it also means moonlight. If connected to moonlight then we know it grows in brightness. The moon cycles from a new moon called amāvāsya to a full moon called pūrnīmā, from pūrṇa meaning filled , full , filled with or full, and then returns to new moon. We count the increase in tithi-s.
    • cāndra too can mean composed by cāndra .
    • cāndra comes from ścandrá glittering , shining
    cāndra saṃvat
    In this system a day is considered 1 tithi in duration and we build from there.
    • 1 tithi = the distance of 12º between the sun and the moon. Hence 2 tithi-s would be 24º, 3 tithi-s would be 36º
    • 15 tithi-s = 1 lunar (cāndra) fortnight. When the moon is growing in brightness; this part of the month is called śukla pakṣa. śukla means bright and pakṣa means 1/2 or fortnight; pakṣa also means the flank or side or the half of anything.
    • 30 tithi-s = 1 lunar month or cāndra māsam (some write māsa). It is made of two pakṣa-s or parts, each are 15 tithi-s in duration.
      • The bright half of the month is śukla pakṣa and the moon blossoms to pūrnīmā or fullness.
      • Then the second half of the lunar month begins called kṛṣṇa pakṣa or the dark half of the month and ends in amāvāsya or a new moon.
      • 30 tithi-s on average = 29.530589 days or 29 days 12 hours 44 min 2.9 seconds. Hence one tithi = (approx) .98453 days or 23.62871 hours
    • 12 cāndra māsam = cāndra saṃvat or cāndra varṣa (varṣa means a year)
    As mentioned in past posts each of the 15 tithi-s have a name and quality associated with it. Post 5 talks a bit more on this matter.

    If you wish to look at the tithi calculations for your area consider this site: http://www.astroica.com/vedic-astrology/tithi-calculator.php
    What will you observe ? A new tithi can start during any part of the day i.e. it is not assigned to when the sun or moon rises but has every thing to do with the movement or transit of the moon-sun longitudinal distance of 12º increments.

    For Chenni , India
    saptama tithi ( 7th tithi)
    Start Time : 9th of July at 5:04 PM
    End Time : 10th of July 6:23 PM

    aṣṭáma tithi ( 8th tithi)
    Start Time : 10th of July 6:23 PM
    End Time : 11th of July 08:20 PM


    praām

    sources: portions and parts from sūrya-siddhānta , Sanjay Rath teachings, Chandrashekhr Sharma writings.
    Tata Institute of Fundamental Research, personal jyotish library and studies.
    Last edited by yajvan; 09 July 2012 at 08:30 PM.
    यतस्त्वं शिवसमोऽसि
    yatastvaṁ śivasamo'si
    because you are identical with śiva

    _

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