Each year is divided into two halves, known as ayana. Uttarayana begins on the day of the (winter or summer) solstice, normally December 21, when the sun begins its apparent northward journey. Dakshinayana begins on the first day of the (summer or winter) solstice, normally June 21, marking the sun’s southward movement. (Which solstice – summer or winter – depends if one lives above or below the Earth’s equator!)
Two Halves of the Year
In ancient astronomical texts, the year is divided into two halves, each divided into three portions of two months. The solar half of the year is from winter solstice to summer solstice. It is called the northward course (uttarayana) where the days of the Sun lengthen. The lunar half of the year is from summer solstice to winter solstice, and is called the southward course (daksinayana) where the nights of the Moon lengthen. Ancient authorities divide each half-year into three seasons, making the six traditional Indian seasons. Each of these seasons is divided into two seasonal months.
The two halves of the year can easily be described as being divided by the two solstices. In this context, uttara means north (or upwards) and ayana means roadway, or course. Daksina means south (or right side). The two halves are called the southern and northern course of the Sun respectively.
The two days commencing the two ayanas are considered sacred and known as punya kala, “times of great merit.”
Making Proper Time
Another viewpoint on the Hemalamba year was given by the Agasthiar school of astrologers in Tamil Nadu, India. Their term for Hemalamba is “Hevilambi” and it is given that 2017 has several important aspects including “Surya Vidya Shakti,” (directly translated as Surya – Sun – education-learning-knowledge-is-your-wealth and Energy, the Goddess Energy) and that what is important in this year is that we make sure to select the right time to do anything.
The Agasthiar tradition tells, “During this year, there will more than the usual propensity to make time related mistakes. Thus Lord Surya reminds us that we need to pay attention to time, which is our most precious resource.” This makes sense in a year ruled by the Manes who are the progeny of Prajapti, Lord of Time. And Agni, God of Fire, also rules this year, and he represents the Sun/Surya which also oversees time.
One may take time and practice detachment, discrimination and employment of the intellect in making decisions. It is also important to look to electional astrology and determine the best time to commence new projects (such as during Shukla Paksha, which is the active half of the month) and for completion of projects (such as during Krishna Paksha, which is the receptive, finishing half of the month).
This year it will be more important than ever to really listen to one’s own intuition and to practice patience, and to take time. Do not haste, waste, worry. One remembers their favourite form of the Divine – by name and form – and calmly examines the situation and discriminates right and wrong. This is one simple exercise of your own spiritual intelligence.
The Solstice Super Moon
The Solstice New Moon is a Supermoon: A Supermoon happens when a Full Moon or New Moon coincides with the Moon’s closest approach to Earth; also called perigee. A Supermoon can be a Full or New Moon. A Super Full Moon looks around 12% to 14% bigger than its counterpart, the Micro-moon.
New Moon of the Solstice
The New Moon of the Solstice takes place in Gemini, an air sign (ruled by Mercury) and more precisely, in Ardha nakashatra, where there are four planets: Moon, Sun, Mercury and Mars. Ardha nakshatra is ruled by Rahu, the north node (which causes solar eclipses). The Presiding Deity is Rudra, lord of the storm and of destruction; the symbol of Ardha nakshatra is a human head! Ardha is characterised by a deep feeling nature combined with passionate thinking. The primary motivation is kama, desire. The demon Taraka is associated with Ardha, who obtain “undefeatable power” from Lord Brahma and was defeated by babe of seven days. It is suggested that absolute power has to be balanced with intelligence; no human action devoid of discrimination and detachment will lead to any good outcome. Hence the nakshatra is called tikshna, sharp, dreadful.
The New Moon together with Sun, Mercury and Mars are in the 10th House. This suggests rank, honour, success and fame; the 10th house is where we apply our education to earning an income. Hence, associations of the 10th house with reputation, vocation, profession: career, high social visibility, public approval, social reputation, hierarchical leadership positions; responsibilities, executive decisions; father’s values and wealth; dignity and rank.
However, attention must be paid to the ruler of Ardha nakshatra, Rahu, the north node of the moon, and to the house owner itself, Mercury, who is afflicted by the presence of the Sun, and we note the Moon is similarly afflicted. Nakshatra ruler Rahu is known as charakaraka, giver of fraud, sham and fakery. Rahu is imposter, pretender, master of put-on’s and humbug. A lot of energy is given to Rahu dispositing four planets in one nakshatra. The nature of Gemini is kama (desire) and a mutable sign. The resolve of both Sun and Mars, pitta planets, may not escape the smokescreens of Rahu.
Rahu may be seeking out private enemies to seek revenge upon. With two fire planets in an air sign, overuled by smoke, smoke, smoke, there could easily be deception on the world stage as Rahu takes the business of the 10th house with arrows “hitting the mark” and we may see hidden agencies taking up performance, action, operation, transaction, exertion and giving proper cause for concern. We are speaking of interference in domestic affairs of sovereign nations by hidden agencies right in the 10th house of public affairs.
Is there a balance? Is there any ameliorating effect? we observe that Saturn is in 6/8 aspect to Moon, Sun, Mercury and Mars, but it is also a weak, gandanta Saturn depleted of strong drishti in Scorpio. Of the Vishnu Sthanas, we note that Jupiter is with the Ascendant in Virgo … and as Lord of 4th and 7th houses, aspects all planets in 10 house, Gemini, giving Raja Yoga, Gaja Kesari Yoga and Raja Sambandha Yoga. However, the key issues is sufficient strength of Jupiter that the Yogas fructify, that is, come to give their effect. It is a weak Jupiter with 6th position in shadbala, strength.
In the navamsa (D9) we find Jupiter in Gemini (2nd House) aspecting Sun and Moon in Sagittarius (8th House). In Dasamsa (D10), Sun and Moon are in 12th house conjunct Rahu and in the Rahu-Ketu Axis, signifying losses for Sun and Moon and the continuation of secret enemies, hidden agents, deprivation and confinement in the public sphere. These could be times of extreme challenge from friends and sympathisers of ill-wishers, i.e., self-selecting extremists.
At the solstice time, it is said that the change to Daksinayana brings the rains and the cold. Rains are necessary for growth. While this may be a time of mental confusion, so-called soldiers wandering and causing mayhem, we are never without succour and assistance. Keep in mind that Hevilamvi, the Tamil name for this samvatsara guides us to seek the proper time to undertake remedial action. This requires vairagya and viveka, discrimination and detachment. The Angelic Realms advise, “All we need to do is ASK”. If enough people seek peace and harmony and put peaceful thoughts out into the energy fields surrounding the Earth then we may create a chain reaction which brings about peace and not war nor disturbance. Samasta loka sukhino bhavantu, may all beings in all the worlds be happy.
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