Astrology is a group of systems, traditions, and beliefs in which knowledge of the relative positions of celestial bodies and related details is held to be useful in understanding, interpreting, and organizing information about personality, human affairs, and other terrestrial events. A practitioner of astrology is called an astrologer, or, less often, an astrologist.Astrology is variously considered by its proponents to be a symbolic language,a form of art,science,or divination.|
There are many traditions of astrology, some of which share similar features due to the transmission of astrological doctrines between cultures. Other traditions developed in isolation and hold completely different doctrines, although they too share some similar features due to the fact that they are drawing on similar astronomical sources.
The main traditions used by most modern astrologers are:
Indian or Jyotish Astrology
Western and Indian astrology share a common ancestry as horoscopic systems of astrology, and are essentially similar in content. The main difference is that Indian astrology continues to use the sidereal zodiac, linking the signs of the zodiac to their original constellations. Western astrology, on the other hand, divides the sky into twelve equal segments, beginning with the First Point of Aries, where the line of the equator and the ecliptic (the sun's path through the sky) meet at the spring equinox. This difference of approach matters because of a process called the Precession of the Equinoxes, whereby the way the earth rotates in space changes very slowly over time. This has led to a position where over the centuries, the twelve signs of the zodiac in Western astrology no longer correspond to the same part of the sky as their original constellations (and so to their Indian counterparts). In effect, in Western astrology the link between sign and constellation has been broken, whereas in Indian astrology it remains of paramount importance.
In Chinese astrology a quite different tradition has evolved. By contrast to Western and Indian astrology, the twelve signs of the zodiac do not divide the sky, but rather the equator. The Chinese evolved a system where each sign corresponds to one of twelve 'double-hours' that govern the day, and to one of the twelve months. Also most notably and uniquely, each sign of the zodiac governs a different year, and combines with a system based on the five elements of Chinese *Cosmology to give a 60 (12 x 5) year cycle. The term 'Chinese astrology' is used here for convenience, but it must be recognised that versions of the same tradition exist in Japan, Vietnam, Thailand and other East Asian countries.
In modern times, the three traditions have come into greater contact with each other. Chinese and Indian astrology have spread to the West, and awareness of Western astrology has increased in India and East Asia.
Indian Astrology called the Jyotish, is universal and timeless. Jyotisha is one of the most time-tested and oldest systems of astrology in the world. In Western countries, it is called Vedic astrology, which refers to Indian or Hindu astrology.
Indian or Jyotish Astrology originated from Vedic Scriptures, dating back
at least ten to twenty thousand years. The Vedas the oldest books
of the world library. They are the world’s most ancient scriptures
and the most vast, complete system of knowledge known to man. Thus,
Indian Astrology is the science of understanding the subtle influences
that come to us from the greater universe.
Indian astrology reflects the understanding and experience of ancient
spiritual teachers regarding the facts of life. The genesis of Indian
culture is rooted in the Vedic Hymns which date back before the
dawn of civilization, and were preserved as they passed from father
to son and Guru to disciple.
In the Vedic system Moon rules the emotional nature. It is well
known that the planets with their large magnetic fields and gravitational
interaction with the Earth, affect it physically. The Indian astrology
defines the actual traits of an individual, marital compatibility,and
the future based on the position of planets at the time and place
Indian astrology is the study of the subtle energies, which make
up our world. While evaluating a horoscope under Indian astrology,
nothing more is looked beyond the blending of energies which can
combine in an infinite variety of ways. As energetic beings, each
one of us is comprised of a combination of energies, which makes
up the sum total of our being.
Each of us is created by a particular combination of planetary
gravitational pulls exerted in different degrees, from different
angles, and in different quantities. The multitude of possible combinations
account for the variety of personalities, mentalities, physiques,
as well as emotional and intellectual constitutions.
Indian astrology is popularly known as Jyotish or Vedic Astrology.
A major branch of astrology practiced in India is based on a sidereal
zodiac, rather than a tropical one. It uses the twelve constellations
from Babylonian, but also has an additional "lunar" zodiac
based on 27 lunar constellations or Nakshatras.
These constellations are based on the approximate number of days
that the Moon takes to complete a cycle relative to the stars. The
Vimshottari dasa system is a predictive used in the Indian astrology
and begins with the Moon's position through the lunar signs. The
Moon in these lunar signs is also used in Muhurta, the Indian method
of choosing the auspicious time to perform any job.