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miquar
10-05-2013, 09:48 AM
Hi all. I've started this thread to try to get some clarity about the sidereal zodiac, after finding conflicting information. My understanding was that the Indian government, at some point in the 20th century, tried to homogenise the practise of vedic astrology in India by citing the original Babylonian 12 sign sidereal zodiac as the true sidereal zodiac, calling it the Lahiri zodiac.

If the great year is 25,868 years long, then the vernal point moves at about one degree in 71.9 years. Solar Fire gives the current difference between tropical and sidereal positions as about 23 and a half degrees. This means that the tropical and sidereal zodiacs would have coincided around 320 C.E.

But some sources seem to be claiming that the original sidereal zodiac coincided with the tropical zodiac in 100 C.E. I know that there are various ways of locating the sidereal zodiac along the ecliptic, and that it can be divided by irregular constellations as well as equal signs. But there was surely only one original Babylonian twelve-sign sidereal zodiac.

I would be grateful if anyone could shed any light on this. Many thanks,

JUPITERASC
10-05-2013, 12:48 PM
Hi all. I've started this thread to try to get some clarity about the sidereal zodiac, after finding conflicting information. My understanding was that the Indian government, at some point in the 20th century, tried to homogenise the practise of vedic astrology in India by citing the original Babylonian 12 sign sidereal zodiac as the true sidereal zodiac, calling it the Lahiri zodiac.

If the great year is 25,868 years long, then the vernal point moves at about one degree in 71.9 years. Solar Fire gives the current difference between tropical and sidereal positions as about 23 and a half degrees. This means that the tropical and sidereal zodiacs would have coincided around 320 C.E.

But some sources seem to be claiming that the original sidereal zodiac coincided with the tropical zodiac in 100 C.E. I know that there are various ways of locating the sidereal zodiac along the ecliptic, and that it can be divided by irregular constellations as well as equal signs. But there was surely only one original Babylonian twelve-sign sidereal zodiac.

I would be grateful if anyone could shed any light on this. Many thanks,
Approximately 285 A.D. BOTH sidereal AND tropical ephemeris indicated the Sun's ingress into Aries at the Spring equinox as occurring SIMULATANEOUSLY for each zodiac :smile:

Both systems observe celestial phenomena BUT from different vantage points.


Western astrologers orient planets according to the seasons


Vedic astrologers orient planets to the fixed stars.

VISUAL OF THE DIFFERENCES BETWEEN SIDEREAL AND TROPICAL http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=82p-DYgGFjI&feature=related :smile:


EXAMPLE

In approximately 11,200 years, at spring equinox,
Sun will be at 1st degree of Libra due to precession of the equinox
exactly opposite TROPICAL zodiac

SIDEREAL PERSPECTIVE

http://fluorideisbad.wordpress.com/files/2009/06/precession21.jpg



http://4.bp.blogspot.com/_8jXqgLFghN8/TQQWDvimXhI/AAAAAAAAAYc/S6lrDnz_8LU/s1600/Precession+of+the+Equinox+Book+graph.jpg
http://www.spiritualhealingportal.com/images/photo/Tropical%20Astrology.gif

miquar
10-05-2013, 12:59 PM
Thanks Jup. So is that based on the Lahiri sidereal zodiac? And was this the original Babylonian sidereal twelve-sign zodiac?

Do you know why someone might consider the coincidence of the zodiacs would have occurred at 100 BCE ?

Thanks again,

JUPITERASC
10-05-2013, 01:04 PM
Thanks Jup. So is that based on the Lahiri sidereal zodiac? And was this the original Babylonian sidereal twelve-sign zodiac?

Do you know why someone might consider the coincidence of the zodiacs would have occurred at 100 BCE ?

Thanks again,
Historical dating methods have cultural differences due to different ways of classifying 'time'

for example this year is year 2013 for westerners

but a few cultures continue to peg their 'years' to alternative markers

reconciling these sometimes causes disputes :smile:

miquar
10-05-2013, 07:44 PM
Strangely the source that gave 100 BCE was Nicholas Campion in A History of Western Astrology.

Do you know about the other questions in my last post.

Thanks for taking the time to post on this thread.

miquar
10-05-2013, 08:35 PM
Remembered book title wrongly. Should be: An Introduction to the History of Astrology.

dr. farr
10-06-2013, 03:23 AM
There have been several coincident dates determined by various authorities:

-Gould et al, researching Hipparchus, gives the date 120 BC
-Magregor Mathers, (allegedly) working from "original" ancient esoteric material, gave 90-94 BC as the date
-the little known Alcyone/Pleiades ayanamsa gives 144 BC*
-historian Professor Whitney and co-research/astronomers at Yale University and Harvard University, gave (back in the late 19th century) 420 AD (see eg Richard Hinkley Allen's "Stars Names: their Lore and History')
-Vivian Robson estimated 500 AD
-B.V. Raman, using various original Indian (Vedic Astrology) sources, gave 387 AD

Based upon my studies and "experiments" regarding this subject, I strongly lean to the earlier dates: note that Campion's date-100 BC (if he gave that date rather than 100 AD or CE!)-is very close to the Hipparchus, Mathers and Alcyone/Pleiades dates, all 4 dates-each coming from very different sources-are within a 50 year period of time of each other.

The discussion between AquarianEssence and I, on the 2nd and 3rd pages of the thread entitled "The Age of Aquarius", might be of some interest regarding this subject...

(*using this date, and precessing @ 50.35 seconds per year-a rate used by some astronomers {others use 50.24 seconds per year} the Vernal point would have entered the last degree of Aquarius in the spring of 2001)

miquar
10-06-2013, 05:46 PM
Many thanks. So could someone confirm that the Lahiri zodiac is the same as that used in Babylon when the zodiac was first divided into twelve signs?

JUPITERASC
10-06-2013, 06:27 PM
Many thanks. So could someone confirm that the Lahiri zodiac is the same as that used in Babylon when the zodiac was first divided into twelve signs?
A link/stating the source of the above quoted assertion would be helpful. In the meantime an acknowledged currently living expert on this subject is rumen kolev who provides an an email address at http://www.babylonianastrology.com/ :smile:

miquar
10-06-2013, 10:32 PM
Hi. I can't remember where I came across the idea that the Indian government chose the original Babylonian zodiac to be the Lahiri zodiac. But according to Robert Powell, in History of the Zodiac, the Babylonian sidereal zodiac was coincident with the tropical zodiac in 220 C.E and so the vernal point is now at 5 degrees Pisces of this zodiac. Whereas the vernal point is currently at 23 and a half degree of the Lahiri Zodiac, and so the Lahiri and tropical zodiacs must have coincided at about 320 C.E.

You gave 285 C.E. as the year of coincidence, so what sidereal zodiac is this based on? The vernal point must be at 24 degree of this zodiac.

JUPITERASC
10-06-2013, 11:20 PM
Hi. I can't remember where I came across the idea that the Indian government chose the original Babylonian zodiac to be the Lahiri zodiac. But according to Robert Powell, in History of the Zodiac, the Babylonian sidereal zodiac was coincident with the tropical zodiac in 220 C.E and so the vernal point is now at 5 degrees Pisces of this zodiac. Whereas the vernal point is currently at 23 and a half degree of the Lahiri Zodiac, and so the Lahiri and tropical zodiacs must have coincided at about 320 C.E.

You gave 285 C.E. as the year of coincidence, so what sidereal zodiac is this based on? The vernal point must be at 24 degree of this zodiac.
The Tropical Vernal Point is PERMANENTLY FIXED at theoretical point 0 Aries :smile:

IN CONTRAST TO

Sidereal Vernal Point which takes account of precession

Lahiri ayanamsa is sidereal thus takes account of precession
So there is a 23.5 difference from the Tropical Vernal Point 0 Aries


Thus Sidereal Vernal Point = approximately 5 Pisces

If you get an opportunity, then watching EARTH'S MOTION AROUND THE SUN - NOT AS SIMPLE AS I THOUGHT explains http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=82p-DYgGFjI&feature=related

tsmall
10-07-2013, 12:27 AM
Isn't there some difference between the different sidereal ayanmshas, and aren't those differenced based on which precession rate, as well as start date each uses? miquar, is that what you are trying to figure out, what is the start date for precession? Or are you trying to find the exact time the two zodiacs aligned?

I don't know if it helps or not, but for some reason many of the western traditional siderealists of whom I'm aware use (I believe dr. farr has also said it produces the best results, though he uses the tropical zodiac) Krishnamurti.

Is this for the same book/idea as the 8 house system? If so, have you tried posting the question to skyscript? I believe there may be members there who could also help.

dr. farr
10-07-2013, 02:48 AM
Yes there are significant differences between the various ayanamsa's; also I personally am unaware of any connection between the Lahiri figure and the Babylonian zodiac (actually Babylon had-as I remember-about 26 constellations grouped about what we now refer to as the ecliptic)

The various ayanamsa's (and of course, only 1 could be objectively correct in a scientific sense) are based on the estimated date for the Vernal point's entry into the boundaries of a zodiacal constellation (NOT a SIGN-the actual starry constellation) Problem with this is the various boundaries allocated by various historical cultures to each zodiacal constellation. Also, when referred to the ecliptic, the constellations often overalp, because the 12 zodiacal constellations are of variable size (longitudinally considered)-they each DO NOT cover exactly 30 degrees of longitude (eg Gemini covers 22 degrees of longitude, while Aries covers 33 degrees-these figures based on the historical Western zodiacal boundaries, not on these boundaries as fixed in the 1930's by the International Astonomical Society)

To find the current ayanamsa, you base the calculation upon the date of Vernal point (alleged) co-incidence with the starry zodiacal constellation's LAST POINT, then
a) if the date is AD, subtract this date from the current date, multiply by 50.24, then divide by 3600: this gives the # of degrees to be subtracted from the current tropical degree position
b) if the date is BC, add this date to the current date and do the same calculations as above.

miquar
10-07-2013, 05:19 AM
Hi. Thanks everyone.

Jup - thanks for interesting link. I was really asking about different sidereal zodiacs, as tsmall says. Your figures are quite confusing, since if there is a 23.5 degree difference between the tropical vernal point and the first point of Aries in a sidereal zodiac, then the tropical vernal point will be at 6.5 degrees of that sidereal zodiac. To approximate this to 5 degrees changes the year of alignment between that sidereal zodiac with the tropical zodiac by around a century.

Hi tsmall. Yes I'm still writing that same book. I decided in the end that the only sufficiently established 8-segment cycle of position is the lunation cycle, so that's the one I'm using to compare the archetypal differences between 8 & 12-fold division of the circle.

I also would like to look at the history of the tropical zodiac, and so am trying to get a sense of how the different stages of awareness and use of this zodiac tie in with the zodiac alignment. It would seem appropriate to use the sidereal zodiac of the day for this, which puts alignment within about one degree at the time that Ptolemy wrote Tetrabiblos, reaching perfect alignment in 220 C.E. However, from what I can gather, the Lahiri zodiac was aligned with the tropical zodiac about 100 years later at about 320 C.E.

Given these dates, I was confused about why Campion would suggest 100 C.E. as the approximate year of alignment. Which sidereal zodiac might he be considering, I wonder?

Hi dr. farrr. Do you know if the Babylonians moved the first point of their sidereal Aries when they began to use 12 thirty degree sidereal signs rather than 12 irregular constellations?

I guess that since the ayanamsa refers to the angle of arc along the ecliptic which separates the tropical vernal point from a proposed first point of sidereal Aries, then it could be applied to a sidereal zodiac based on either signs or constellations. I believe the astrological ages are often thought of as being of equal length to one another, which implies that the vernal point is being tracked along sidereal signs.

Which sidereal zodiac has been adopted as the Lahiri zodiac? It can't be the original Babylonian 12-sign zodiac as this gives a 25 degree ayanamsa (according to Robert Powell), whereas the Lahiri gives 23.5

miquar
10-07-2013, 01:29 PM
Hi again. I've rooted around some more and have found some clarity, but one thing doesn't add up still.

The original Babylonian zodiac is said to have an ayanamsa of 24.9 degrees (because it is said to have coincided with the tropical zodiac in 220 CE, and based on 72 years for one degree of precession).

The lahiri zodiac has an ayanamsa of 23.5 degrees and it is widely mentioned that this zodiac coincided with the tropical zodiac in 285 CE. But using the precessional rate given above, the ayanamsa has moved 23.5 degrees since about 320 CE.

The difference in dates of coincidence of about 100 years fits perfectly with the difference of 1.4 degrees between their ayanamsas.

On the other hand, the Babylonians supposedly had 0 Spica at 29 degrees and a few minutes of Virgo, while the Lahiri system places it at 0 degrees Libra. This difference of almost one degree concurs with a difference of around 70 years between the respective dates of coincidence with the tropical zodiac.

Does anyone know why this doesn't add up? It could seem that the figure of 285 CE must be wrong because the Lair ayanamsa is 23.5 degrees. But then again, why are these two sidereal zodiacs said to be just under one degree apart?

JUPITERASC
10-07-2013, 03:53 PM
Hi. Thanks everyone.

Jup - thanks for interesting link. I was really asking about different sidereal zodiacs, as tsmall says.

Your figures are quite confusing, since if there is a 23.5 degree difference between the tropical vernal point and the first point of Aries in a sidereal zodiac, then the tropical vernal point will be at 6.5 degrees of that sidereal zodiac.

To approximate this to 5 degrees changes the year of alignment between that sidereal zodiac with the tropical zodiac by around a century.
You mentioned a figure of 23.5 degrees
....the Lair ayanamsa is 23.5 degrees.
That was probably a typo and you obviously must have intended to write 'Lahiri' as you then said on your next post
....whereas the Lahiri gives 23.5
Definition of ayanamsa http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Ayanamsa


By the way,

remember that precession 'goes backwards' :smile:


SO


then using your given suggested figure of 23.5

WHEN COUNTING BACKWARDS FROM Tropical Vernal Point 0 Aries FOR SPECIFICALLY 23.5

THIS IS HOW WE COUNT BACKWARDS SPECIFICALLY FROM Tropical Vernal Point 0 Aries FOR 23.5

i.e.

0 Aries
-----------------------------------------------------------------
29 Pisces last degree
28 Pisces penultimate degree
27 Pisces and so on counting backwards
26 Pisces
25 Pisces
24
23
22
21
20
19
18
17
16
15
14
13
12
11
10
09
08
07
06 Pisces
05 Pisces


HOWEVER KEEP IN MIND THAT THESE ARE APPROXIMATIONS

'....The ayanamsha describes the gap between tropical and sidereal zodiacs

AND CHANGES CONTINUALLY through the Precession of the Equinoxes (http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Precession_of_the_Equinoxes)

at the rate of approximately 50" a year,

and is currently APPROXIMATELY 24 (Lahiri).


But traditionalists in India put the current value at about 22.6 degrees which is the value according to Suryasiddhanta and Raman's ayanamsha approximates it while Yukteshwar ayanamsha is almost exactly equal to Suryasiddhantic ayanamsha.

Western Astrologers Fagan (http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Cyril_Fagan) and Bradley computed it at 24 degrees in 1950; however, there are various values in use in India.....'

'.....While the general consensus among Western siderealists is that the star Alcyon represents the first point of Aries, differences arise because of the indefinite ancient boundaries of the constellation of Aries. Indian definition of astrological signs is not based on constellations but on equal angular division of sky, which makes it difficult to define signs in terms of stars and constellations. This is the source of controversy about ayanamsha......'

miquar
10-07-2013, 05:34 PM
Hi Jup. Lots of patronisingly obvious points there, but no explanation as to why 30 - 23.5 = 5

JUPITERASC
10-07-2013, 05:43 PM
Hi Jup. Lots of patronisingly obvious points there, but no explanation as to why 30 - 23.5 = 5
Apologies :smile:

23.5 is a figure you mentioned on your OP

So I've focused on that

Counting backwards from zero Aries
one gets to an approximation of the current ayanamsa

This is because the precise ayanamsa varies according to which authority one consults

Some say 23.5 some say 24 others claim some other figure and so on http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Ayanamsa

greybeard
10-07-2013, 06:17 PM
The tropical zodiac DOES account for precession.

Sideralists who claim that only the sidereal zodiac accounts for precession should check their logic circuits.

The two zodiacs account for precession in two different but equally valid ways.

The tropical zodiac allows for determination -- by observation -- of the vernal equinox (0 degrees Aries by definition in that system) during any year.

The sidereal zodiac (claimed as the Only True Zodiac by some) is not based on any verifiable fact. Period. How many ayanamsas are there? A dozen at least. In which year did coincidence actually occur? No one knows. The precessional period is not regular; it has slight variations, sometimes caused by such minor perturbations as an earthquake (Concepcion). Where is "zero Aries" in the constellations? That point is purely arbitrary, unlike the vernal equinox.

It should also be noted that the Earth is not fixed in space. It apparently revolves around the Sun, the Sun (and solar system with it) around Sirius, and that complex around the galactic center. Therefore the insistence on using Earth's relationship to fixed stars (that are not fixed) is spurious.

If the scientific standard for theories and mathematical models called Parsimony (also called Occam's Razor) informs us how to judge the validity of theories and models, then the tropical zodiac wins the contest, because the tropical zodiac describes earth's relationship to the cosmos in a simpler way. The sidereal zodiac depends on the fixed stars (which are not fixed in the first place), while the tropical zodiac works perfectly without them ever appearing in the sky. With the tropical zodiac we could create the signs as they exist today without ever having seen a star shine. This is not true for the sidereal zodiac.

If our astrology is geocentric, and the art deals with people who live on the Earth (they are also geocentric), then an Earth-centered system of measurement (determination of the vernal point) is appropriate. It does not rely on far-distant stars as its frame of reference.

It seems to me absurd to put Capricorn in the middle of summer (totally out of character for the sign's significance), which is what the sidereal zodiac does during a lengthy period in each precessional cycle. Capricorn is always a winter sign in the tropical zodiac.

We should keep in mind a very elementary fact. Constellations and signs are not concrete facts, but are constructs of man's mind. They have no substance in reality. The entire fabric of astrology is a construct of man's mind. The reason it works is because man's mind, like the solar system itself, is one with the all. Physical laws that are valid on Earth are also operative in the farthest reaches of the universe. And this also applies to non-physical laws. An example of a non-physical law is the Law of Karma, whiich careful observation of life will show to be true and consistently effective. This same underlying law can be expressed as a physical law, stated by Newton as "For every action there is an equal and opposite reaction." It can be stated also as "Whatsoever thou sowest, that also shall thou reap." These laws hold throughout the universe.

The constellations (and individual stars within them) were man's first points of reference for locating the wandering stars (planets) in the sky. The signs evolved out of the constellations as man began to apply mathematics to the natural world around him. But the constellations themselves are mental constructs. I "see" a scorpion by connecting the dots. An image (and a correlation, an analogy) is what creates the scorpion...not something inherent in the stars themselves.

Thus, man's mind functions according to this universal scheme, and his capacity for analogy (which is the basis for astrological symbolism -- including constellations and signs) is in harmony with the nature of the cosmos in any of its expressions. That is why astrology works.

I use the tropical zodiac. But I have absolutely no objection to the sidereal zodiac (pick the one you like best; sadly for me and my ilk, there is only one tropical zodiac). My only objection stems from the false claims of the more fanatical siderealists that theirs is the One True Faith. I can't recall ever seeing a tropicalist trying to proselytize the way many siderealists so often do. "The lady doth protest too much, methinks."

Miquar, I don't think your question has a definitive answer. The variations in the precessional cycle (period) can only be determined by observation, and are not precisely predictable in the abstract. What is past and unobserved is lost. There are, I believe, at least 4 or 5 causes (forces that influence and affect) for Earth's nutation, and slight variation in any one of them affects the precessional period. As mentioned, unpredictable events such as large earthquakes add their grain of sand to the pile as well.

miquar
10-07-2013, 07:47 PM
Yes, thanks Greybeard. I guess I just wanted some clarity about why the figures in my last post don't make sense. Everyone seems to use a value of one degree in 71.5 to 72 years for precession, and so that inconsistency shouldn't be there, unless I'm missing something.

I didn't know that the Sun revolved around Sirius. Presumably someone has checked to see if there is a nodal axis at the intersection of the ecliptic plane and the plane of the Sun's orbit around Sirius, to see if it comes out anywhere near one or more of the proposed sidereal first points of Aries.

I was reading something today about the way in which vedic astrology is taught and how it is defended with religious fervour because it is entwined with the teaching of the vedas, and also that in fact vedic astrology was only given that name in the eighties, and astrology was not originally a part of vedic teaching anyway. I'll post the link in a separate post.

Another thought is that the twelve sign sidereal zodiac was established when most of the original sidereal sign of Aries was in tropical Aries. So this could have influenced the observations and associations made.

Hi Jup. I took the 23.5 degree figure from Solar fire, and was just question why you would place the vernal point at 5 degrees of Lahiri Aries rather then 6.5 degrees.

I have many doubts about the astrological ages, and am more interested in the apparent transit of the galactic centre through the tropical zodiac. And now I'm also interested in the apparent transit of Sirius. The ancients wouldn't have known that Sirius has a special relationship to Earth, but I'm now curious about where it 'landed' with regard to the first 12 sign zodiac.

JUPITERASC
10-07-2013, 07:54 PM
We should keep in mind a very elementary fact. Constellations and signs are not concrete facts, but are constructs of man's mind. They have no substance in reality. The entire fabric of astrology is a construct of man's mind......

....The constellations (and individual stars within them) were man's first points of reference for locating the wandering stars (planets) in the sky. The signs evolved out of the constellations as man began to apply mathematics to the natural world around him. But the constellations themselves are mental constructs. I "see" a scorpion by connecting the dots. An image (and a correlation, an analogy) is what creates the scorpion...not something inherent in the stars themselves.

Thus, man's mind functions according to this universal scheme, and his capacity for analogy (which is the basis for astrological symbolism -- including constellations and signs) is in harmony with the nature of the cosmos in any of its expressions. That is why astrology works
In ancient times when most people thought the universe was a living being, it was "The Norm" to imagine tiny points of light they saw in the night sky as being grouped into separate, distinct sets of 'Images'.

These 'Images' were made up of separate stars which - in the opinion of the ancient people of this planet - seemed to be grouped together.

Thousands of years ago, on various parts of the planet Earth, different cultures imaginatively 'connected the dots' of the tiny points of light that they thought were close to each other and personified them as 'Mythical Beings' and narrated stories about the lives of these Mythical Beings.

The Mythical Beings and the stories of their lives varied from culture to culture. Different cultures imagined different images in the patterns of the stars of the night sky. The ancient people of this planet did not know that these tiny points of light were hundreds - perhaps even thousands - of light years distant from each other.

NEVERTHELESS THOSE TINY POINTS OF LIGHT ARE 'REAL STARS' :smile:

THE FOLLOWING IS A QUOTE FROM WIDIPEDIA
Former constellations are constellations (http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Constellation) that are no longer recognized by the International Astronomical Union (http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/International_Astronomical_Union) for various reasons. Many of these constellations existed for long periods of time, even centuries in many cases, which means they still have a large historical value and can be found on older star charts (http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Star_charts). http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Former_constellations

THE FOLLOWING ENCAPSULATED INFORMATION MAY BE FOUND AT http://www.physics.csbsju.edu/astro/...ation.faq.html (http://www.physics.csbsju.edu/astro/asp/constellation.faq.html)

The oldest description of the constellations as we know them comes from a poem called Phaenomena written by Greek poet Aratus 270 B.C. and it is clear from the poem that the constellations mentioned originated long before Aratus' time. Some detective work reveals a plausible origin. Firstly, Aratus' constellations excluded any near the south celestial pole because that was always below the horizon of the ancient constellation-makers. From the size of this uncharted area of the sky, we can determine that the people responsible for the original constellations lived near a latitude of 36 north which is south of Greece and north of Egypt but similar to the latitude of the ancient Babylonians and Sumerians.

Because of a "wobble" of the Earth's axis of rotation, the position of the celestial poles changes slowly with time - which is a phenomenon known as precession. The constellation-free zone is not centered exactly on the south celestial pole, instead the uncharted area is centered on the place in the sky where the south celestial pole would have been around the year 2000 B.C. This date matches the time of the Babylonians and Sumerians. So it seems likely that the Greek constellations originated with the Sumerians and Babylonians. From there, knowledge of the constellations somehow made its way to Egypt - perhaps through the Minoans on Crete who had contact with the Babylonians and settled in Egypt after an explosive volcanic eruption destroyed their civilization, and from there early Greek scholars first heard about the constellations and wrote about them.

When most ancient cultures looked at the night sky they saw 'pictures' aka 'Images' in the stars. The earliest known efforts to catalogue the stars date to cuneiform texts (i.e. Sumerian/Babylonian/Assyrian texts and artefacts)and artefacts dating back roughly 6000 years. These remnants, found in the valley of the Euphrates River, suggest that the ancients observing the heavens saw the lion, the bull, and the scorpion in the stars.

here's a link to an interesting British Museum web page regarding the origins of writing in Mesopotamia
http://www.mesopotamia.co.uk/writing/story/sto_set.html

miquar
10-07-2013, 07:57 PM
http://www.astro.com/astrology/in_vedic2_e.htm

The above is the article I mentioned in the last post.

According to the Babylonian star catalogue given at the end of History of the Zodiac, by Robert Powell, Sirius is a frustrating 10 degrees from 10 degrees Cancer, with a sidereal longitude of 19 GE 53.

dr. farr
10-08-2013, 04:22 AM
I consider the Koch criticism of Indian astrology to be quite prejudiced and to contain many inaccurate statements. Note, though, that I am by no means a Vedic practitioner-but I do consider Vedic astrology to be an effective astrological model and worthy of respect.

I am also a 100% tropicalist! For me, signs and starry constellations are 2 seperate matters (apples and oranges, really!): I believe the signs arise from the Earth and are, so to speak, "windows" of the Earth which modify the subtle energies from the planets and stars, which pass through each window. But I also believe the stars and constellations are VERY important astrological factors, and that the zodiacal constellations each have special influences similar to the SIGNS, which in Hellenist/proto-Hellenist times, were named after them (because at that time the starry zodiacal constellations were mostly in the SIGNS, which latter were given the names of the constellations then occupying them)

I am not aware of babylon using only 12 ecliptic zodiacal starry constellations, until a very late period (4-5th centuries BC), ie, around the time of the beginning of a syncretization of Sumero/Elam/Babylonian + Egyptian + Magian astrological streams under an emergent Hellenist influence (the latter arising and spreading outward from Plato's Athens)
The earliest naming of the constellations in the Hellenist world, was by Eudoxus of Cnidus, c.360 BC (Aratos later used the prose work of Eudoxus, now lost, to write the poem about the constellations, which has come down to us)
Eudoxus, a student of Plato, travelled to Egypt where he spent 16 months at Heliopolis, learning about astronomy, before later returning to Greece and writing his books on astronomy (including the constellations and planets) and mathematics: so his astronomical learning came from Egypt (not Babylon)...

The most ancient civilizations were: Egypt, Sumeria, Elam (in the Western area of what is now Iran), the Indus Valley Civilization (Harrapa) and the Yellow River Valley Civilization (in China) We now know from archaeology that all of these most ancient civilization were in regular communication and trade with each other: where there is trade in goods, there is also exchange of ideas as well. "Star Names: their Lore and Meaning" by Allan, shows clearly that these various ancient civilizations all had concepts about the same stars and asterisms (constellations), only used different words to name and describe each of them. I consider it questionable to claim that any ONE of these most ancient civilizations, originated astronomical observation or was the foundational seat of astrology.

The division of the Ecliptic circle into 12 discrete areas (boxes, zones) of exactly 30 degrees each, originated with Hipparchus in 120 BC, and such a division does NOT extend earlier than that date; and, earlier, the Ecliptic was NOT the center of consideration, the EQUATOR was: and division of the EQUATOR into 12 parts far predates Hipparchus division of the Ecliptic into 12 equal segments.

These various factors must all be taken into consideration when attempting the VERY difficult task of trying to determine equivalents vis a vis stars, constellations, signs, etc.

miquar
10-08-2013, 10:10 AM
I've been doing some more reading and stuff on line, and found a quote from an Swami on u tube video going back to 1894, which states that according to oriental astronomy, the Sun and Sirius are in a binary system together.

It seems that there is a growing number of astronomers who believe that the Earth doesn't wobble, and that precession is due to the curved motion of our entire solar system through space. Some of the evidence cited for this is:

Sirius has not moved due to precession along with the vast majority of other stars. This is shown by the fact that it has been rising one minute of time before the Sun 30 or so days after the solstice, for thousands of years. Apparently most Egyptian temples were set up so as to be attuned to this moment, and are still so attuned to this day.

The declination of Sirius is similar to many kuiper belt objects, and the kuiper belt ends too abruptly (presumably the inference being that there is a point at which bodies get captured when the Sun and Sirius are relatively close together).

Precession is speeding up, and is now estimated at 24,000 years for a full cycle. This does not concur with the wobble theory, but does concur with the binary theory.

The Binary Research Institute have a very good website if anyone is interested in looking further into this.

Elsewhere I've seen claims that the Mayans used Sirius as a marker of time, and then realised that this wasn't as stable as another star which they then used, and that they eventually used the galactic centre itself, which westerners only discovered little over a hundred years ago.

I don't know what the implications of all this for astrology would be - after all, it didn't really change when Copernicus came along - it just maintained its geocentricity while presumably using the heliocentric model simply to aid calculation of planetary positions. In this sense perhaps it doesn't matter what causes the ayanamsa to increase over time.