About the Author
Prof. N.E. Muthuswami – (1925-2005) was born in Noorani village in Palakkad in the year 1925 to Sri.N.S.Easwara Iyer and Smt. A.V. Ananthalakshmi Ammal as their fourth son. After completing his primary education, he joined Trivandrum Sanskrit college and passed Mahopaadhyaaya in the year 1945 in first rank. After this he underwent the 6 year Diploma course in Indian Medicine in Ayurvaeda. During this period he completed the Sahithyaratna and Hindi Vidwan examinations in Hindi. He entered into the private service as a Hindi teacher. He later joined as Hindi Lecturer in Mar Ivanios College, Trivandrum, S.N. College, Quilon and S T Hindu College, Nagercoil. In 1954 he started his career in Government service as Hindi Lecturer in University College, Trivandrum. He became the Principal of Hindi Training college, Trichur. Later became Professor at Government College Pattambi and then retired from service as Editor of Publications Department from Ayurveda College, Trivandrum. As the editor of the Publications Department, he had edited and published with commentary, classics from Sanskrit relating to Ayurveda and edited a Dictionary in Ayurveda in Malayalam.
During his service in the above department, he was well known to his students and colleagues as a good teacher, friend and well-wisher. He was known to the student community through his well written and simple guide books for prescribed text books. When government introduced the Sanskrit teacher examination course, he came out with simple and well written books in Malayalam and Sanskrit for those students. These became an instant success with the learners as well as teachers of such courses.
After retirement from government service, he took to Astrology. As President of the Jyothisha Prachara Sabha, which he founded for the propagation of Astrology in Kerala, he started writing books on Astrology, when he found that the common man was unable to learn astrology due to the serious lack of books in Malayalam. With his extensive knowledge of Sanskrit, English, Tamil and Malayalam he started translating and editing classics in Sanskrit to Malayalam and they became the backbone of the learning process for the common man to learn Astrology. His fundamental series Jyothisha Patamala was a favourite among the starters for learning Indian astrology. He wrote more than 70 books comprising the different areas of Indian astrology in simple Malayalam, understood by the common man. Though they were simple enough for the common man, they were scholarly as well and was well received by the elite scholars of Indian astrology. He went to the extent of publishing a Dictionary of Indian Astrology in Malayalam, for making available to the learners, the extant knowledge of Astrology.
As President of Jyothisha Prachara Sabha, with the aim of popularizing study of Astrology among the learned public, he started organizing evening classes for the public, in a small way. The first batch which was started in 1985 comprised of office going persons, and then started as examination oriented course. In the period of 20 years, there were more than 1800 students who undertook training from him in the area of Indian Astrology.
The publication urge in him took to writing for the elite in English as well. His course in Indian Astrology, is a complete reference book in itself for the learners of Indian Astrology. The Kerala classic on Indian Astrology, Krishneeyam was translated with English commentary to the international forum through his book Gulika in Astrology. He took the speciality of Kerala astrology, the Ashtamangala Prasna to the world astrologers forum, when he addressed the elite gathering and presented the keynote address on Ashtamangala Prasna as faculty of American College of Vaedic Astrology at their International Conference at Calicut. He introduced the Ashtmanagala Prasna to the elite astrologers at Bangalore when he organized a workshop on Ashtamangala Prasna which was an instant success among the astrologers. He had edited Krishneeyam into Hindi to introduce the concepts presented in the book to the astrologers in Hindi. Which is waiting for publication.
He felt that the preservation of Classics in Astrology which in Sanskrit should be preserved in its pure form and they should be audio mastered and he went to the extent of audio taping these classics like Prasnamaarga, Jaathaka Parijatham, Phaladeepila, Varaha hoara, Krishneeyam, Jathakaadesam, Brihadjathakam and Saravali.
He organized conferences with the help of fellow astrologers of common thinking in various facets of astrology in different parts of Kerala to create an awareness among the public at large about astrology. The impact of this in the area of Indian astrology in creating the awareness was such that about 6/7 magazines sprouted I Malayalam during the last five years for the common man and the astrological fraternity in Kerala were brought to the forefront to the help of them and awaken their interest in astrology as a useful medium for solving their day to day problems.
He also had created impact in the areas of Carnatic Music when he organized several National level meets for different artists from the southern parts of India. He organized Interstate Music Festivals in Trivandrum in 1985 under the banner of Dakshina Bharatha Sangeetha Prachara Sabha which was also founded by him for propagating Carnatic music. Many of the erstwhile stalwarts of the past and present gave concerts at Trivandrum during theses festivals. Perhaps this was his way of bringing the concept of national integration to fine arts and music when he brought different performing artists from different states of south India.
He never left any area of learning in Indian astrology unturned and brought them to the common man’s understanding. He always felt that proper education of the concepts were the right way of promoting astrology. He brought Indian astrology to the doors of the common man. All these Herculean efforts were done single-handedly by him with extreme devotion and sincerity.
He passed away in the year 2005. At the age of 80 after he returned from a Conference on Astrology at Alappuzha. For him health was never a hindrance to learning and propagating astrology.
A lifetime ambition and effort of an illustrious scholar, the author of more than seventy books on astrology and allied subjects, bringing out many hitherto unknown nuances of Indian astrology, is attaining fruition this day, with the publication of this Encyclopedia, his magnum opus. Of course this moment of elation of fulfillment is not without its poignant feeling, as the author is not alive to witness this glorious day of its launch. Having dedicated his entire life to the cause of astrology, I am sure that he has been blessing, guiding and helping me to enter into this grand finale phase of presenting this, “Encyclopedia of Indian Astrology” a valuable addition, unique and unparalleled, to the extant astrological literature.
This Encyclopedia of Indian Astrology is the principal source book, a kind of effort that no one has so far attempted. This will cater to the needs of those aspiring and yearning students and scholars alike, in answering their quest on any topic of Indian Astrology, precisely. It can help one to find out how to get the ideas or overcome deficiency of basic resources. Anyone can gain an overall knowledge of the postulates and principles of Indian Astrology and help him or her to improve the knowledge of the essentials of Indian Astrology.
Herein one can find all the ideas and concepts of Indian astrology and they have been presented in a lucid form. The size of the book need not put anyone off. One need not read the whole book to get some information out of it. Considering the vastness of the subject of Indian Astrology none can expect to master everything contained in this Encyclopedia. As a reference tool, this Encyclopedia is written and arranged in such a way to help anyone to find the required information, easily and instantly.
The use of this Encyclopedia can help one to understand the enhanced concepts of Indian astrology. At the same time it can help to clear many a mistaken notion, haunting and hovering above any assiduous student. As the subject itself is so vast and voluminous, this encyclopedia can help anyone to find the information on any topic, irrespective of the level of knowledge of the seeker, in a jiffy, obviating the need to refer multifarious texts or authorities.
In this Encyclopedia, the words have been arranged alphabetically based on the alphabets of English language. Those words which are in Sanskrit language have been transliterated to English. The original Sanskrit word is given in Devanagari script in brackets. This is intended to help the reader to be familiar with the correct pronunciation of the word, as in many cases the English words may not give the correct pronunciation. However the structures of overall alphabetization of the words have been based on the standard principles.
The ideas and concepts in Indian Astrology and Prasna have been elaborately explained with full-length articles. The basic tenets of astrology like Planets, stars, houses, compatibility etc., have been fully elaborated with tables. The inter-relations of planets, stars, etc have been tabulated and presented in structured tables. For example, the concepts like Jaathaka, Dasaa, Dreakkana, Baadha, Ashtakavarga, Shoadasavargas, Ashtamangala Prasna etc., to name a few, have been explained with informative tables. The Dasaa system with sub periods and sub-sub periods with their results are extensively dealt with, in the tables. Topics in Medical astrology too finds a place at relevant places.
A new approach to the predictive astrology has been adopted in this Encyclopedia by providing the combinations of planets, in relation with their character and tenets to conclude on the results more effectively. For example you will find a plethora of planetary combinations for shaping the varied facets of life like the administrative officers, doctors, engineers, musicians or events like anapathyatha, death, etc.
The Pronunciation System
The Encyclopedia follows a pronunciation system for Sanskrit words aided by equivalent pronunciation principles of the English language, helping thereby the user to understand the correct pronunciation of the Sanskrit word. While transliterating Sanskrit words into English, at times two spellings for the same word have become inevitable such as Muhurtha and muhoortha. This is to ensure some freedom to the user to adopt any one of those spellings.
Enormous efforts have gone into the making of this magnificent and multifaceted Encyclopedia. Both the author and the editor had to burn their midnight oil for months and years with immense amount of strain and stress in its making. Despite the meticulous care bestowed in the editing, some mistake would have crept in or escaped our attention. For this, we crave the pardon of the erudite user. The available literature on Indian Astrology is by itself so vast and equally unlimited is the knowledge they encompass. It could be that the material presented in these pages, could not match those immense treasure of boundless knowledge or details, found embedded in those ancient texts. However, care has been taken not to leave any area, however small, insignificant or unimportant, unexplained. Further editions will enable us to incorporate those ideas, areas and words which would have inadvertently been left out now. Care has been taken to give cross reference to all major and minor entries relating to astrology for easy access.
Professor Muthuswamy had immersed and involved himself, heart and soul, in the preparation of this Encyclopedia for more than five years and has been constantly revising, rewriting the entries to his utmost satisfaction, till his last days. Prof. Muthuswamy passed away in 2005. However, he had a very clear vision as to what form the dictionary must be in its final shape. Immense care has been taken to see that this present form of the dictionary, both in its contents and shape, conforms to his aspirations. I have been publishing all the books of my father, Prof. Muthuswamy, over all these years and editing them under his guidance. I have put forth only a minimal knowledge and expertise in editing this enormous Encyclopedia cum Dictionary to bring it to its present form. Despite my genuine efforts there could be some shortcomings in presentation or preservation of ideas. I have always felt the unseen presence of my father and his guidance behind me, in my efforts of editing this Encyclopedia and that is why it was possible for me to bring out this great Classic in its present shape. I have no doubt that my beloved father would have wished it that way.
I have to record my heartfelt gratitude to elders and my family, who with their patience and moral support, were of great help in making this Herculean effort possible. I record my sincere thanks, especially to Sri. V. S. Kalyanaraman of Bangalore for his constant encouragement, advice and valuable suggestions.
Considering the voluminous nature, the Encyclopaedia has been brought in two volumes. For easy handling necessitating frequent use. The first volume contains alphabets from A-L and the second volume M-Z.
I am sure this Encyclopedia will be well received by all the scholars, students, lovers of astrology. Considering the immense wealth of information and material it contains, I have no hesitation to say that this Encyclopedia will endear itself to one and all of our astrological fraternity, worldwide and prove to be a very valuable reference work, immeasurably useful to them, for centuries to come.
A probe into the genesis of Indian astrological thoughts convince us that our seers of yore must have keenly observed the human experiences over thousands of years. They must have analyzed them incisively to unearth the laws of nature shaping them. that effort could have enabled them to find some common factors influencing those human experiences. It was easy for them to conclude, then, that such underling forces influencing and determining human experiences could not be due to some terrestrial factors alone. They could infer that forces acting from somewhere beyond had a definite say on matters and manners of the earth. They concluded that the forces that regulate the movements and cycles of heavenly bodies must have much influence over these terrestrial affairs. The planets were the catalysts of this extra earthly principle. They codified these causes and effects. Astrological science is the sum total of these codified causes and effects. It is the result of meditative intelligence and extra sensorial experience of great seers, unattainable and unimaginable to the contemporary elite, advocating a materialistic base for the study of this science and treating astrology as a system of mere fortune telling. Any intelligent person can undoubtedly come to this conclusion when he or she makes a dispassionate study of the basic principles of astrology. Human beings are only one of the media through which one can observe and realize these planetary vibrations working. Astrology is the study of human behaviour and experiences, on the backdrop of time and space.
Time has no conceivable beginning and end, like space. It is the space which regulates the idea of time. Though the space envelopes the whole universe, as far as astrology is concerned, space is confined to the zodiacal path of planets demarcated by the nakshathra zones or constellation. All living beings on earth particularly human beings are the miniature or microcosmic editions of the zodiacal or macrocosmic universe. So naturally every bit of human being should possess all the qualities either conceivable or inconceivable, possessed by the zodiacal universe. We can term this as Brahmaanda and the Brahma contained therein. The great seers with their intuition have been able to comprehend the mysteries of this mysterious universe and present it to the world as the wisdom of astrology. They based the tenets of astrology on Raasis and Nakshathras representing space and bhaava representing the human experience. They also found out that the human experiences are the results of their deeds in past and they are indicated by the planets occupying the different positions in the raasi chart of the individual which is called horoscope or jaathaka in the astrological parlance. Astrology is the study of human experiences indicated by the celestial bodies on the backdrop of time and space. Astrology, it has been rightly said, is the most systematic attempt to explain natural phenomena.
The first principle upon which the science of Astrology rests is that of Vaedanta, that the whole Universe is actually what the term implies – a unity. A law, which is found in manifestation in one portion of the Universe, must also be equally operative throughout the whole. While the Heavens form the macrocosm, man is the microcosm. Each man is a little world exactly representing the Universe. While all seem quiet without, there is an active world within. Such a world is visible only to the inner sight of a Yoagi. Those laws, which are operative among the planetary bodies, are also in force amongst us. The second principle is that, by a study of the motions and relative positions of the planets, the operations of these laws may be observed, measured and determined.
Taking entire human life into consideration, the true view is that a man is both a slave of the effects of his previous karma in his past incarnations and is a free agent as regards fresh independent deeds, deeds which are in no way directed to thwart, to arrest, to alter; or in any way to modify or remould the effects of his past Karma. Astrology gives us the knowledge of our past Karma, how to gift it as well as how to work out our fresh deeds, so that we can get rid of this wheel of Karma and be free. But if one wishes to move along with the natural course of things he may do so and the course would become easier and smooth. This view can explain three points – (1) the apparent and unaccountable failures of attempts, even when the individual tries his best (2) the cakewalk success on many occasions, even when the individual does not try his best (3) the success that attends on proportionate labour. In the first case, the attempt was one aimed at moving against the current of fate; in the second case, it was one of moving down with the current and in the third case, it would be an attempt where free human agency can display itself.
In India, nakshathra Vidya, the science of the stars, has been thought of as an intellectual attainment even in the Vaedic literature. The Vaedic as well as pre-Vaedic literature including Puraanaas contain innumerable references which show that astrology was held in high esteem and referred to as the ‘eye of knowledge’. It is an important limb of Hindu religion and philosophy, handed down from great seers.
Astrology is the oldest of all sciences. It has exercised a fascination for humanity and the romance associated with the stars has inspired the poets of all ages. Its history is traced back to the Vaedas of the wise Rishis. By the expansion of their consciousness, they could reach the shining ones. Modern research tends to show that it had its origin in stellar worship, for; in ancient times the stars were believed to be the abode of the gods. Astrology, as in the case of other ancient arts which possessed the gems of truth, has gradually freed itself from the penumbra of superstitions to emerge as the true science of the heaven. From India the belief in Astrology spread to China, Babylon and Chaldea; whence it spread to Egypt, Greece, Rome, and throughout the whole world. Once it taught the people to lift their aspirations by faith, hope and reverence, through the stars and the planetary spirits to the One and Universal Self.
The literature of astrology is as vast as the history of man. No one scholar can possibly hope to untangle all of its intrinsically woven strands in the course of his life. None could read the extant works on the subject, let along resolve its intrinsic patterns of thought. Astrology has been described as both a “science” intrinsic patterns of thought. Astrology has been described as both a “science” and an “Art.” In short casting and interpreting horoscopes have been, for more than two thousand years, the focus of the science of astrology. Through widely discredited, by the so-called scientific stream, it is an exacting art demanding considerable expertise of its techniques.
The famous astronomer cum astrologer Varaahamihira also characterized a bad astrologer, as a sinner and as one who defiles society. However, he pays extraordinary compliments to a worthy astrologer who, in his view, should know practically all branches of knowledge under the Sun and be a guide, philosopher and teacher to the society. “No sinner will creep into a place that is sanctified by the presence of a true astrologer. No person who studies and divines the course of destiny will ever be found in hell, but will reside permanently in the world of Brahman.”
This hoary lore, according to Prof. Bhatt, is to be practiced not for selfish ends but to guide the needy and the distressed, to remove the cause of their suffering and to turn their attention towards God. Though an astrologer cannot control the powers of the stars, he an harness it through “Elections” and so enhance the prospects of success in any undertaking or for any individual.
The development of astrology at a popular level owes considerably to the intellectual vitality of the applied sciences. Indian Astrology is a mine of inexhaustible information and knowledge useful for mankind irrespective of geographical, linguistic and cultural barrier. In astrology every aspect of life is studied in depth, their causes and effects analyzed and common underlying principles arrived at. The whole universe including man is the subject of study of astrology. It encompasses the whole day to day experiences of human beings. Today there is no area of human experience which is not touched upon in some way or the other by astrology. Historical evidence supports the claim that astrology is a valid discipline with vast potential for enriching and understanding of all the phases of life. There is no topic under the Sun which does not come under the fold and purview of astrology. Astrology is also a science where human experiences and behaviour have been analyzed threadbare and dicta propounded which can be verified and substantiated the core.
It is true that today this branch of study is not able to explain ad prove its dicta by laboratory methods as is being practiced in other materialistic sciences. But materialistic sciences also have their own limitations when they confront with human experiences, abstract in nature. Modern science has invented that when the male sperm and female ovum meet in the womb the living embryo comes into being. This is really a great find as far as the medical science is concerned. But it has no explanation for the simple query that why some couples healthy in all respects remain childless in spite of undergoing all the fertility treatment. In such cases of limitations, astrology has got valid explanation. It doles out reasons and remedies to overcome the problem. The numerous dicta propounded are being experienced in day to day life. Can any modern science say by any laboratory experimental methods as at what date the marriage of a person could take place, at what time someone could build a house or when one can get a job or go abroad. But astrology can pinpoint them in unequivocal terms and answer these queries with almost complete accuracy. Of course, the person making the prediction may not be able to explain the rationale of the cause and effect of such results in a manner, to convince the inquisitive intelligence.
The rationalists cannot and need not dispute the existence of such a force beyond the earth. In such a situation, their underestimation of this force cannot be said to be scientific. The argument that only those principles are acceptable to them which can be experienced through senses, does not hold water. For example the theory of Shadaadhaara or Panchakoasa, in body cannot be proved by senses. The Yoga Saasthra has established that there are Shadaadhaara that are invisible but inferable in the six nerve centers of the body. If a neurologist contends that these are not visible on dissecting a body and so he is not in a position to accept their existence, it would be sheer lack o common sense. But the Yoagadarsana propounded by Maharishi Patanjali has been accepted as a science and is being taught as a science in many international universities. So there is no reason why astrology should not be given this status.
The more the rationalists attempted to discourage and malign astrology, the more people flock to astrologers. This has resulted in the creation of many quack astrologers. A man wearing yellow glasses feels the whole universal yellowish. A man wearing a leather shoe feels the whole earth leathery. So also a man knowing a few principles of astrology develops the false notion that the whole world is after Indian Astrology. But the stunning reality is that even though one does not know the basic astrology, 50% of the population believe in Astrology.
Unfortunately to astrology the significations and indications of planets were personified by the authors of astrological texts. It is the personification that is being questioned by rationalists. There is no convincing answer to the poser of the rationalists that how the planet can have hands, legs and human shape. Such unanswerable posers create problem for the astrologers. Because of this personification and allegories, on finds it impossible to have a concept of astrological tenets without a human face. People at present are prepared to accept astronomy and not astrology, because the former is verifiable through visual observations while the latter is not. Actually astrology starts where astronomy ends. As far as human experiences are concerned both these studies are complementary to each other. Astrological findings are based on astronomical, mathematical and biological principles. It is a sad fact that their connecting links could not be established. It is quite unfortunate that astrology is relegated to the background in spite of its usefulness to humanity.
Even lifestyle of adivasis in India is designed and patterned on the lines sanctioned by astrology. It cannot be and should not be separated from the life of Indians. Its literature is precious and pregnant with the treasure of wisdom. It is to be explored, studied, assimilated, substantiated and propagated. Those who question this wonderful result of ancient wisdom are advised to understand it fully, apply it to their own life and if it proves fallacious then only try to question. It is the duty of Astrologers particularly Indian Astrologers to do everything at their command to take it in its pristine form to the people.
Encyclopedias in General
This is the age of science and scientific knowledge and it has progressed by leaps and bounds. To keep pace with this, for the specialization of knowledge, the preparation of encyclopedias in different specialties has become necessary. The expansion of knowledge has necessitated the preparation of encyclopedia in special subjects. With the spread of education and expansion of communication the contents and types of encyclopedia have undergone a sea change. In this age of specialization specialists are contributing everyday, funds of new information to their specialized studies. Encyclopedia of any subject has become the criterion to measure its development the expertise has contributed to that branch of study.
The meaning of the word Encyclopedia has changed considerably during its long history. History of encyclopedia is essentially a guide to the study of the development of scholarship. It is said that in the past 2000 years at least 2000 encyclopedias have been issued in various parts of the world. Today most people envisage an encyclopedia as a multi-volume compendium of all available knowledge. Using an encyclopedia helps those intellectuals to add to their knowledge. Even those who need information outside their field of activity and those who want to keep themselves abreast of constantly changing information surge can be benefited by an encyclopedia.
Encyclopedia Britannica says: “No one can know what specific influence the encyclopedia may have had on the thoughts and actions of any individual. One can be sure however that no one can look at the encyclopedia without reacting in some way to its contents. The most ordinary effect is to remind the reader how little he knows of the world around them. This may produce to him a feeling that he is content to leave the situation as it is. It is far more likely to stimulate him at least to make some temporary effort to improve his understanding and out of this may develop further studies that may interest him for life time.”
The encyclopedia is the literary storehouse in the form of a book or any other retrieved form of the whole knowledge available in a subject till date. The aim of an encyclopedia is to gather the knowledge on the face of earth and set forth its general plan to those with whom we live and transmit it to those who will come after us. Thus the labours of past centuries could be preserved not to go in vain on any information that humanity want to know. Any literary work to become encyclopedic in its contents should be all-inclusive to project the ideas and concepts of the subject. It must contain all references through words and should not miss even a single reference or point of information. Encyclopedia is a literary work that provides details, though not exhaustive, on any information about a subject which a reader wants to know.
Encyclopedia is the improved and expanded version of the Dictionary. In dictionaries the meaning and at time the derivation of the word are given. The descriptions given in the encyclopedia should be accurate, precise and methodically comprehensive. Encyclopedias answer the fact finding questions of the reader and help him to obtain reliable information on the subject for which it is intended. It also provides additional reading material, particularly for any special subject. Encyclopedia can be defined as a work that aims at giving a comprehensive summary of all branches of knowledge or knowledge in any specific field or allied subject. The former is known as general encyclopedia and the latter as special encyclopedia. The name encyclopedia is applied to any work of one or more volumes with articles usually in alphabetical order on all branches of knowledge or on all aspects of one subject. The purpose of modern encyclopedia is to condense the current essential information and make it accessible to the non-specialist.
Encyclopedias have become the part and parcel of the human culture. In some countries there are many encyclopedias in every subject and in every language. This is the case of all modern subjects including the social and exact sciences, languages and literature. The development of a subject depends on its encyclopedia. As the horizon of human knowledge expands, the body of encyclopedia also increases. Since the encyclopedia is the storehouse of the total knowledge earned by man, it varies according to the variety and nature of subjects which men possess throughout the world.
To quote Denuis Diderot the aim of an encyclopedia is to gather the knowledge scattered over the face of the earth to set forth its general plan to the men with whom we live and to transmit it to those who will come after us in order that the labors of past centuries may not have been in vain.
An encyclopedia to be turn to the sense of the world should present correct and complete facts as accurately as possible about things it deals with. Encyclopedia is the improved and enlarged version of books which came into being as the result of the man in recording his thoughts, ideas and experiences with the aim of transmitting it to the posterity. When the number of books increased enormously and in different languages the world over, it became necessary to have all these knowledge in a condensed form which resulted in the creation of Encyclopedias. When in became physically impossible to contain and accommodate the ever expanding knowledge of man in a single volumes increased. So also the number of contributors also increased. It is said that the largest encyclopedia ever put together was the Yung Le TaTien developed by the Emperor Yung Lo in the 15th century contributed by 2169 scholars and ran into 917480 pages and 22877 sections and 11100 volumes there are umpteen languages and manifold subjects the world over. It is practically impossible to enumerate the various subjects developed in each country and in each language as well. It is also impossible for a man to just peep once in all these subjects, not to speak of mastering them. Since it is difficult for a man who wants to study a subject to reach all the books and other literature available on the subject, encyclopedias are prepared encompassing the gist and quintessence of all the books published on the subject. As the subjects vary in nature, contents of encyclopedia also vary. In short, an encyclopedia caters to quench the thirst of knowledge of an inquisitive reader.
Rapid advances the multiplication of subjects, particularly science, warranted the elaboration of the system. Encyclopedia distinguished themselves for their accurate entries, excellent and exhaustive explanations and highly developed system, of cross references. Special subject encyclopedias are the order of the day. Everyday new subject encyclopedias and additional volumes are published. Special encyclopedia in Humanities, Natural sciences, Social sciences and Technology are also being published to satisfy the demand of specialists in these fields. Encyclopedias in new subjects hitherto unknown to outside world are also coming to the limelight. This is why every state government and national government establishes and promotes the establishments for the preparation of encyclopedias. These day’s encyclopedias are taken as multimillion projects by a team of experts and publishing organizations having infrastructure in the nook and corner of the world. Of late encyclopedias are becoming more picturesque and illustrative. The modern developed printing technology has made them coveted showpieces. The ultramodern techniques in printing and retrieving systems have helped the quality production of encyclopedias. Information technology has developed the retrieval system in Digital format as well. One thousand pages can be converted to be held in one Compact Disc (CD) minimizing the problem of storage space.
Indian astrology is a neglected subject. It is vast, deep, rich useful to mankind like any other subject. It is a part of Indian culture. People fruitfully use them in their day to day life. As far as Indian Astrology is concerned one could not even have dreamt of such a project, so far. It is a pity that India could not contribute at least one encyclopedia in Astrology which is her pride. In subjects where encyclopedias are already published the task is easier because the compiler will have a basic structure before him on which we can rebuild fresh editions. But in a subject which has neither dictionaries nor encyclopedias published till date, the task becomes more difficult. Unfortunately to the learners, the Indian Astrology falls in this second category. The gist and essence of the above statement is applicable to present encyclopedia also. Except three small dictionaries in English having 300 pages as an average, no book was still published in Indian Astrology nearing the nature of Encyclopedia.
This being a special encyclopedia and that also in the field of Indian Astrology, only limited group of people the world over are expected to show interest in this work. Astrology is a professional subject of practice and as is seen in every profession, they pay less attention to the theory and academic point of their subject. Indian Astrology cannot be and need not be an exception. In Indian astrology more importance is given to traditional oral instruction then the bookish knowledge. There are traditional astrologers in India who make accurate and pinpointed predictions who have not gone through many books and they are not aware also about the different astrological practices in different parts of India. Not to speak of the world over. At this juncture an all inclusive encyclopedia of Astrology in English is a desideratum.
This author made a humble attempt in this regard and published an annotated Dictionary of Astrology in Malayalam with explanation of about 14000 astrological ideas. This was in the year 1988. Since the language used was Malayalam the scope was limited in the limited area of Kerala alone in India. The author wanted to take the niceties, greatness and utilities of Indian Astrology to the world community through an international medium. As things stand now English is the most suitable medium for an Indian to take an Indian subject to the world community. So it was decided to prepare and publish an encyclopedia in Indian astrology incorporating as many astrological ideas as possible in English. I have only touched the fringe of it. There are numerous unpublished palm leafs kept in the almirahs the world over and the traditional practical knowledge which is not recorded in books is to be tapped and recorded. Indian astrology is to be studied as an inter-disciplinary science with Ayurvaeda, Tanthra, Mantra, Vaasthu and Vedas. For this, people with national spirit and wider orientation should learn all these subjects and conduct research to bring the greatness of Indian wisdom before the world and bring back the lost glory of hoary India.
In such a situation this Encyclopedia and Indian Astrology can serve many purposes.
1. English knowing Astrologers of the world can know the niceties, nuances, depth and vastness of Indian Astrology.
2. Practicing astrologers can learn many more techniques of unfailing prediction and shine in their profession.
3. Astrology though applied to make predictions, has different forms and techniques in different countries, among while the Indian system is unique that requires at least 18 years full time learning to master it. Since no attempt seems to have been made beforehand to present these principles of Indian Astrology in a complete book form, it is hoped that this encyclopedia will serve to fill that void.
4. Even the English knowing astrologers in India do not have a book in English where all the astrological ideas and concepts are incorporated. Perhaps this is the only encyclopedia published so far.
5. Knowledge related to any subject is international property. Barriers of language and territories should not prevent them to reach far and wide and to be useful to mankind the world over. So it is the duty of intellectuals knowing the subject to preserve, propagate and add to the subject for the posterity. The present Encyclopedia is a humble attempt of the author to fulfill that responsibility.
6. Though Indian Astrology is useful to mankind and has enough potential like medicine. Architecture, Meteorology, there are few takers for it. It is true that there are no authentic books. However when the number of print order is only for 1000 or 2000 copies, it is not even a drop in the world population of 6000 millions.
7. It is the duty of savants of astrology to teach the principles of astrology in its pure and pristine form and not with personified examples and prescriptions.
About this Encyclopedia
There are very many implicit hurdles and unsurpassable limitations for creating an encyclopedia of Indian astrology in English. It is primarily because of the limitations of the English language to explain the intricate Sanskrit terms. English when compared with Sanskrit and other languages in India has fewer alphabets and phonemes. In English there are 26 alphabets only. They are independent giving no scope for any combinations. In Sanskrit, in which most of the astrological texts were written has 16 vowels (in English only 5) and 33 consonants with scope for various combination numbering about 70. Indian astrological literature abounds in Sanskrit words joined with these 119 syllables. In an Encyclopedia in English language these 119 syllables are to be represented by 24 alphabets only excluding x and z, since there are no words in Sanskrit beginning with these letters. So the exact pronunciation of many Sanskrit words cannot be correctly transliterated into English. Scholars use diacritic marks to indicate the correct pronunciation of Sanskrit words in transliteration.
I have not resorted to the system of diacritical marks, as it will be strange to be common English user. In most cases the above vowels and consonants used in Sanskrit cannot be represented through English alphabets and English man can understand their pronunciation only by hearing them. The transliteration spelling adopted by me may not be hundred percent perfect. This difficulty can be removed only by devising new alphabets. But this is not the proper medium to resort to such a new system of alphabets. This difficulty is felt in all languages which have lesser alphabets. But the linguistic fanatics try to accommodate the 180 odd phonemes of Indian languages into 24 alphabets in English. But to overcome this difficulty, I have used corresponding English words for identifying the phoneme and given example of how the phoneme is to be pronounced and to a great extent I have been able to find words which truly represent the pronunciation of the alphabet. I have also given the Sanskrit word in Sanskrit script along with all Sanskritised words in the alphabetized portion of the dictionary so that the confusion regarding the pronunciation of the word is reduced. This will be evident in the words which start with sa, sa sha. I felt that the person who is going to use this encyclopedia will have some elementary knowledge of astrological jargon. To minimize this inevitable difficulty and to familiarize with the correct pronunciation, I have given the Sanskrit word in brackets with each word e.g. Akaalamruthyu. Readers who do not know Sanskrit may bear with me. For their reference, the general plan of the Sanskrit alphabets with their English transliteration used in the dictionary is given at the beginning pages of this work.
In this encyclopedia the topics are alphabetized based on the English alphabetized system for quick reference. Since the work contents are related with Astrology it can be read continuously also as a textbook. Cross reference are given where there are different names for same topic e.g. the word sign in English and raasi in Indian Astrology. Since this is a book of ideas in astrology, the English speaker will be naturally looking for the English words and not for Sanskrit words. This is the case with all topics which are common in Indian and Western Astrology. Such words are explained with English name and cross references are given to the Sanskrit words. In most cases, the Sanskrit words are italicized and are referenced in the respective places as cross references. These cross references are a must in Encyclopedias particularly when more words express the same idea. This is more so in subjects common in two languages such as Indian Astrology and Western Astrology.
In this work I have limited myself to references in Indian Astrology. So, for this encyclopedia the words and ideas had to be culled out from standard treatises by reading every line of the various books. For this purpose standard books like Bruhathparaasarahoara, Yavanajaathakam, Bruhathjaathakam, Jaathakapaarijatham, Phaladeepika, Sarvarthachinthamani, Prasna-anushtanapaddathi, Prasnamarga, Prsnayaam, Jatakatatvam, Bruhatsamhitha, Saaravali etc ere referred. Still some words and ideas conveyed by them may have been left out. I have not included many words and ideas of subjects which are closely allied to Astrology, viz. Astronomy, Vaasthu Saasthra, Tanthra Saasthra, Mantra Saasthra, Yoagadarsana. There are two reasons for their non inclusion. One I am not adept in these subjects and two they are also very vast subjects warranting independent encyclopedias for them.
I could not avail of any scholarly assistance in selection of topics in the preparation of explanation and their editing and streamlining because lack of people who know the subject at a higher level and to share the intellectual work usually necessary for an encyclopedia. There was also no dependable material published I the subject or any forerunner encyclopedia itself. As far as astrology is concerned the library facilities also are very poor. And the preparation of an Encyclopedia requires access to all the material published in the subject. So naturally this will reflect in the explanation given to the words in part.
I do not claim that this work is complete and exhaustive in all respects. In a work of encyclopedia no author whatever may be his repertoire and grasp of subjects can claim completeness and perfection. There will he new words to be included. There will be ideas which still require elucidation. The supplementary editions of many encyclopedias indicate that every encyclopedia is not final and complete but requires improvement by corrections, revisions, additions and other improvements to satisfy the demand of the readers. When this is the case of encyclopedias written by a team of 2000 and 3000 permanent and accomplished scholars, what to speak of an encyclopedia by an ill equipped individual. But as a pioneering work it has its own importance, usefulness and worth. This is only a small beginning. Even the Britannica, the giant of the modern encyclopedias, had only 2000 pages when it was started in the year 1771 and was published in 100 installments. It is a pity that India could not contribute at least one encyclopedia in astrology which is her pride. I hope that this encyclopedia will be developed by Astrologer fraternity. There is ample scope for revision modification and additions.
As this encyclopedia is the first publication in the Indian Astrology, I did not have the facility to refer to or emulate another encyclopedia in the subject. Being an individual effort I had to work with limited physical office amenities, mainly lack of manual assistance. Since I had no publisher to take up the part of publication of encyclopedia, I had to be very economical in all respects. I had to cut short the expenses. I could not even employ a messenger, lest it should add to the production cost. I had to be cost conscious. The men of average income are the users of this encyclopedia and as such the price should not go beyond a reasonable level. So even in selecting the typesetting arranging and selecting the type I had to keep in mind the production cost to be reasonable and this has resulted in keeping a medium standard for the publication which I crave for the indulgence of the readers.
I have to suggest that scholars in the respective fields of vaasthu, Mantra Saasthra, Astronomy (karmapaddathi) and yoagas may take up the work as early as possible, least these valuable oceans of wisdom may be lost for ever, due to the inaction on the part of the professional. There are also astrology to Tibetan, Chinese, Babylonian, Egyptian, etc. Comparative study of these different systems of Astrology will reveal many factors.
Since the time of Independence of India in the year 1947 the educational planning was done by people who were more inclined to alien culture. As a result, the basis and common language which was the uniting element for all Indian states were relegated to background when Sanskrit was discouraged. All traditional subjects, the literature of which were fully in Sanskrit, became obsolete and astrology also was no exception. The sad fact remains that no intensive effort has been made or methodology adopted to teach this subject to their master citizens, by the planners and administrators of education, who do not care to have the mind and vision to include the study of astrology in the curriculum. They lack the acumen to realize the worthiness and richness of Paraasara, Jaimini, Garga, etc. they preferred Chaucer, Milton, Jonson, Mccaulay to Paraasara, Naarada, Sushruta, Bharatha, Chaanakya. One can understand the alien administration neglecting the Indian seers. But it is a paradox that even after India got independence the planners have not realized this unpardonable lapse and irreparable damage done to Indian wisdom. Though their policy pays them rich dividends for the short duration, in the long run it will prove suicidal to the Indian culture. This consequence they do not realize and how one can expect that astrology will get its due share in the curriculum. Academic bodies in some universities like senates and syndicate pass resolutions banning the study of Astrology without trying to understand its principles and utility. This is the position in the universities dominated by the so called rationalists. Still in the name of pseudo secularism the so called rationalists in the higher helm of affairs oppose its study. They connect it with Hindu religion and treat it as communal. There are other groups who brand it as superstition. It is the clear indication that the subject is not properly patronized by the managers and people of the country. In the above subject it is not congenial to professional ethics and tantamounts to the inaction of the able merciless son who witnesses passively the dying mother craving for help before his very eyes. Scholars will definitely appreciate the wisdom Indians had in the field of Astrology. Also the astrological fraternity world over, turn their attention to imbibe the means and niceties of Indian astrology and develop their acumen. Above all, this must open the eyes of the educational planners of India and they have to realize the gravity of the criminal indifference and neglect they have been showing in the propagation of such a great subject. In spite of this criminal neglect and anti-propaganda against astrology, the public encouraged it because of its utility value for them.
At present all over India a new generation of educated intellectuals like Scientists, Managers, Lecturers, Professors and Doctors understand the usefulness of Indian astrology in day to day affairs and have started learning astrology. In all metropolitan cities particularly in Delhi, Bangalore, Ernakulam, Trichur, Trivandrum astrological associations are conducting classes in Astrology. At Trivandrum in the year 1984, I established an Association named Jyothisha Prachara Sabha and undertook the work of giving an academic base to the study of astrology. Apart from this, Indian Astrology has been taken to international academic research and education. Now Indian Astrology can boast of a good number of international astrological bodies like American College of Vaedic Astrology. British Association of Vaedic Astrology to name a few. Also scholarly journals like Astrological Magazine from Bangalore, Vaedic Astrology from Delhi, in English, Khseerapadham from Trichur and popular journals like Jyoitsharathnam from Quilon and Naal from Trichur are now assisting in the propagation of Astrology. This is apart from the numerous journals which are coming in other states and other parts of India and world in vernacular and English on Indian astrology. The result of these efforts has increased the great awareness among the public towards understanding and helping the propagation of Indian astrology to the masses.
I am 78 years old and I myself had to prepare the rough a well as the final press copy of the material. For the Malayalam edition I had to write the words in slips and afterwards alphabetize them. but in this case, thanks to the computer, that itself put the words typed into it, alphabetically and gave print out. But for the help of the computer I could not have thought of the publication of this encyclopedia. Being a one-man effort there were many limitations, those of manpower, infrastructure, finance, lack of reference materials and above all age with all its discouraging and disadvantages attributes. Still I can have the satisfaction that as the effort of an individual, this will have some worth indeed. Being the first of its kind in English, this will help the great subject of Indian Astrology to get it focused to the world community of intellectuals. Due to the age factor the author may not be there to see an improved edition of this. But it is left to the posterity to take ahead this mission.
I am sure the ideas presented in these pages will evoke interest in the minds of the learners, astrological community and the researcher to go further in the advancement of the knowledge of Indian astrology.
I had received suggestions and help from several quarters of astrologers and scholars in the preparation of the encyclopaedia. I am indebted to all of them.
Back of the Book
Encyclopaedia of Indian Astrology
Prof. N. E. Muthuswamy
A comprehensive Encyclopaedia on Indian Astrology,
comprising a detailed description of the concepts
encompassing the various branches of Indian Astrology,
Predictions, Combinations, Prasna, Ashtamangalaprasna, Stellar Astrology, Muhoortha, etc.
Highlights of the Encyclopaedia
* More than 300 full length articles,
* 15,000 words relating to Indian Astrology,
* 300 tables of various astrological data,
* Comprehensive and exhaustive information on different facets of Indian Astrology, Prasna and Ashtamangala branch and different systems of Indian Astrology. The well edited articles on various branches of Indian Astrology, various planetary combinations and possible predictions and other aspects are dealt exhaustively in the encyclopaedia. The various astrological combinations and their results enable the easy prediction of astrological results.
* More than 10,000 Combinations analysed based on various astrological concepts extracted from Indian classics on Astrology in Sanskrit like Parasarahoara, Jathakapaarijatha, Brihathjathakam, Varahahoara, Saaravali, Krishneeyam, Prasnamarga and Tamil classics on Indian astrology.
Prof. N.E. Muthuswamy, (1925-2005), an eminent scholar Astrologer, has written exhaustive commentaries for Saravali in 6 parts, Brihathparasarahoara in 2 parts, Utharakaalamritham in 2 parts, Prasnanushtanapadhathi in 2 parts, Prasnamarga in 6 parts, critically edited with text and commentaries, and more than 60 books on Indian Astrology in Malayalam on various aspects of Indian astrology. His books in English, Ashtamangalaprasna, Course in Indian Astrology, Gulika in Astrology, Krishneeyam have been well received. He has rendered in audio format, Sanskrit classics on Indian astrology, the Prasnamargam, Jathakadesam, Phaladeepika, Varaha Hoara, Krishneeyam, Muhoorthapadavi, Saravali, etc.
Prof. N. E. Muthuswamy, was known in astrological circles in Kerala as the Upakulapathi of Indian Astrology. He has been ardently promoting the learning of Indian astrology among the various sections of Kerala for the last 20 years and he had a large student base. He had organized more than 60 Seminars on various aspects of Astrology at Different places in Kerala and was well known as an educationist propagating Indian Astrology. He organized several All India Astrological Conferences at Trivandrum and were well attended by scholars from various parts of the country. He had also presented several papers on various seminars organized by different organizations all over India. An active member of the Indian Council of Astrological Sciences he headed the Kerala chapter of the ICAS.
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