21 May 2010, 9:27 PM
With this 12th Newsletter the series completes a revolution. We began in June, 2009 with the aim to relate the news of the month with astrology and to bring astro thoughts, classical dictas and ideas that emerge from analysis of events to the fore in a modern, debate format. read more...
27 May 2010, 6:29 PM
Cancer is one such most dreaded health malady of modern times. We will try to answer the above questions through a case study of 'Brain Cancer'. It is a typical case of a MBBS doctor who was suddenly diagnosed of a malignant brain tumor in 2nd week of Dec 2009 and was operated on 28th December 2009, now undergoing follow up treatment. His condition is still critical. read more...
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This article was originally published in the Journal of Astrology April-June 2003 issue.
No one seems to have the correct horoscope of Guru Nanak. The birth details ofGuru Nanak without the time of birth do not seem to be in doubt now with overwhelming Sikh historians stating that he was born on the third Baisakhi day (when Sun enters Mesha) of Vikram Samvat 1526 which when converted into Gregorian year gives 1469 as the year.
(Dr. Raman has discussed the horoscope of Guru Nanak on the basis of some information passed on to him by Mr. Nahar Singh and took the date of birth as 8 November 1470 at midnight at Latitude 31N39 and Longitude 74E47 with Simha lagna, Jupiter in Kanya, Venus in Tula, Sun, Mars and Mercury in Vrischika, Rahu in Dhanu and Moon and Saturn in Vrisha. Dr. Raman did not have the advantage of checking other Sikh histories which are available now after many years of research since he wrote about Guru Nanak and never revised it to take into account the historical findings).
In searching the correct horoscope we come across some difficulties as the following piece taken from a website will show.
Nanak Jayanti is celebrated every year in the month of November while historians say that he was born in April.
"The founder of the Sikh religion, Guru Nanak was born on April 15, 1469 in the Western Punjab village of Talwandi. He was born to a simple Hindu family. His father Mehta Kalian Das was an accountant in the employment of the local Muslim authorities. From an early age Guru Nanak made friends with both Hindu and Muslim children and was very inquisitive about the meaning of life. At the age of six he was sent to the village school teacher for schooling in reading and writing in Hindi and mathematics. He was then schooled in the study of Muslim literature and learned Persian and Arabic. He was an unusually gifted child who learned quickly and often questioned his teachers. At age 13 it was time for Guru Nanak to be invested with the sacred thread according to the traditional Hindu custom. At the age of 16 he was married to Sulakhani daughter of a pious merchant. Guru Nanak was happily married, he loved his wife and eventually had two sons Sri Chand in 1494 and Lakshmi Chand three years later."
Sikh historians have debated about the correct birth date of Guru Nanak. Traditionally, the birth day of Guru Nanak is celebrated on Kartik Poornima which falls in November but if it is switched over to Baisakhi as historians have discovered through their researches it will be in April. Just as Christmas is celebrated on 25th of December though Jesus Christ is said to have been born in April, so also Nanak Jayanti is celebrated on Kartik Poornima and it may never be shifted to April, just as Christmas continues to be celebrated on 25th of December. The birth of Christ can be in the month of April as discussed here.
"Now it logically follows that if Jesus Christ lived (need it be said?), he must have been born. The Gospels tell us that his birth was shortly before Herod the Great died. Herod’s death can be fixed with certainty.
Josephus records an eclipse of the Moon just before Herod passed on. This occurred on March 12th or 13th in 4 B.C. Josephus also tells us that Herod expired just before Passover. This feast took place on April 11th, in the same year, 4 B.C. From other details supplied by Josephus, we can pinpoint Herod the Great’s demise as occurring between March 29th and April 4th in 4 B.C." (From a website)
Another calculation about the birth of Guru Nanak has been done thus.Taken from different websites on Sikhism: "Incidentally Bhai Vir Singh discovered another Janam Sakhi in 1926 to which he designated the name Puratan Janam Sakhi. The contents of this volume nearly correspond with that of Wilayat Wali. All these Janam Sakhis are synonymous on one point that Guru Nanak was born in the month of Baisakh. Before these Janam Sakhis became to be known Bhai Bala’s Janam Sakhi, as mentioned above, had overwhelmed the Sikh mind and thought
(It is worth noting that Bhai Santokh Singh accepts the age of Guru Nanak, at the time of his death, as 70 years, 5 months and 7 days, which when worked back brings the date of birth to Baisakh 1526 Bk.) (It was Mercury-Mars-Mercury-Moon-Sun in Vimshottari dasha).
It is difficult yet necessary to get the correct horoscope of Guru Nanak who was an avatar unlike many other spiritual persons whose correct horoscopes are available. One must follow the classification given in Srimad Bhagavatam of human beings divided into three categories: baddha (those who are in bondage and have to seek liberation), mukta (those who have attained liberation in their present or previous lives and are born to fulfil a mission) and avatara (incarnation of Divinity itself). I have heard from some great saints that I have personally met in my life refer to Guru Nanak sometimes even as the avatara of Raja Janaka, the father of Goddess Sita. The classical example of Raja Janaka was said to be apt because Guru Nanak was a householder who reached the pinnacle of spiritual life and preached high spiritual lessons in which he emphasised charity, kindness, morality and ideal life while living amidst all the turmoil and problems of life. Then he created the tradition of householder gurus which his successors were.
Another great legacy of Guru Nanak was not to name his own son as his successor but Lehna who was known Guru Angad. The story of this succession is narrated thus.
Seven years before the samadhi of Guru Nanak in the year 1532, a devotee of Goddess Durga by the name Lehna approached Guru Nanak who immediately told him that he had been waiting for him. Guru Nanak tested his disciples in many ways including his own two sons. Once they came across what looked like a corpse covered with a sheet. "Who would eat that", asked Guru Nanak and asked his sons who thought that he had gone mad. Unhesitatingly Lehna agreed, removed the sheet and found fresh food which he first offered to his own Guru and his sons and then ate the leftovers. Guru Nanak then told Lehna.
"Lehna, you were blessed with the sacred food because you could share it with others. If the people use the wealth bestowed on them by God for themselves alone or for treasuring it, it is like a corpse. But if they decide to share it with others, it becomes sacred food. You have known the secret. You are my image." (Janamsakhi)
Guru Nanak then blessed Lehna with his own hand (anga) and named him Angad which is how his successor came to be known as Guru Angad. In a traditional way, then Guru Nanak placed some coins and a coconut before Angad and got him anointed with saffron mark and asked him to occupy the seat of Guru. It was an indication of Guru Nanak preparing to shuffle off his mortal coils.
In the ashram of Prabhu Bejoy Krishna Goswami, a great Bengali guru of of the nineteenth century, Sukhmani Saheb, the great scriptural composition of Guru Arjun Deva was recited regularly and his famous disciple known as,strangely, Darveshji, the tradition was kept up and Sikh scriptures were given a place of very high honour and respect.
No one in India has worked on the great Nanak Panthi tradition of initiation and traced how it spread to many places, even in Bengal where they are not called Sikhs but they follow some of the sadhana in which japam is done through breath which Guru Teg Bahadur has described in his famous shabad, "Swas Swas Sumiro Govinda" meaning remember Govinda through every breath.
In 1984, I wrote the following in an astrological article. "Then to save Kashmiri Brahmins Guru Teg Bahadur sacrificed himself. Who will remember this story in the mid-summer madness of June 1984? Guru Gobind Singh himself has traced the ancestry of Sikh Guru's (See Vichitra Natak published by Shiromani Gurudwara Prabandhak Committee, Amritsar) to Bhagwan Rama's family; from Lava, a son of Rama, descended Bedis and Guru Nanak was a Bedi; from Kusha, the other son of Bhagwan Rama descended sodhis and the fourth Guru, Ram Dass on wards. The remaining six, upto Guru Gobind Singh, were sodhis. Were it not so, the first Sikh Guru could not have referred to "Omkarameva Idam Sarvam" of Chandogya Upanishad in the very beginning of Japai Sahib as "Ek Onkar" with which begins the Grantha Sahib. And the tenth Guru could not have in a composition of exquisite Iyrical beauty prayed to Lord Krishna in a plaintive tones:
çHkq twrks dg ykt gekjh uhydaB
uj gfj ukjk;.k uhy clu cuokjh
Prabhuji to kah laj hamari Neelakanth
nar hari Narayana Neel Kanth Banvari
I have been searching the Correct horoscope for many years of Guru Nanak not being satisfied with the one used by Dr. B.V. Raman as that does not reflect the greatness of Guru Nanak nor has any mahapurusha yogas which are necessary to know this unusually great spiritual personality who from his childhood manifested the signs of his future greatness.
I read whatever websites I could see in the internet also, read some books and finally taking the help of some Sikh students of astrology have been able to arrive at a correct horoscope of Guru Nanak which satisfies me now and meets the astrological requirements. That is being presented here.
Some well known events of his life
In all accounts of the birth time of Guru Nanak midnight birth is mentioned. Thus we have to take 15 April 1469 midnight birth. On this basis after verifying some known incidents the birth time fixed is 00.55 midnight of 14/15 April 1469 Talwandi (Pakistan). Surinder Singh Johar clearly mentions in his book, Guru Nanak "It was 1’O clock, just after midnight" (page 40). Since no definite dates are given, our attempt should be to come nearest to the year of the event mentioned in his biography.
Vimshottari dasha sequence
Birth 15 April 1469, Moon ends 04 Sept 1470, Mars ends 04 Sept 1477 (In Mercury antardasha he went to school. Mercury is in the fifth house here.)
Rahu ends 04 Sept 1495 (He was married at the age of sixteen and no date of marriage is given. At this age he would have entered the antardasha of Ketu in the seventh house). Jupiter was in Karka the seventh house at the time of his marriage or had just transitted out of it.
In Jaimini it could be the dasha of Tula and the antardasha of Vrischika from where Darakaraka, Mercury is in the seventh house.
Jupiter ends 04 Sept 1511. In 1494 his son Sri Chand was born in the antardasha of Mars which is aspecting the fifth house in the birth horoscope and is aspecting the lagna (Tula) in Saptamsha from Mesha. Jupiter was in Kanya aspecting the fifth house and the fifth lord. In Jaimini Chara dasha it could be Tula-Kumbha. Putrakaraka, Mars, is in Kumbha.
Three years after his second son was born and it could be Jupiter-Saturn. Jupiter is aspecting his fifth lord Venus in the birth horoscope and Saturn is the fifth lord of Saptamsha.
Jupiter was in Vrischika aspecting the fifth house and fifth lord. It could be Tula-Tula in Chara dasha of Jaimini from where the fifth house has Putrakaraka, Mars.
In the horoscope made here, exalted Moon in the fifth house and exalted fifth lord Venus in the third made him the poet he was who composed his superb religious compositions, particularly Japuji Saheb and Asa-di-Vaar and many other poems which are immortal pieces of world’s spiritual literature.
The climax of his spiritual life came at about the age of thirty in Jupiter-Mercury, Jupiter is exalted here with Ketu and Mercury, the ninth lord of the birth horoscope is in the fifth house. In transit Saturn was in the fifth house and Jupiter from Makara was aspecting the fifth house. In Jaimini Chara dasha, it could be Kanya-Meena from where there is exalted Jupiter with Ketu in the fifth house. Meena is a moksha rashi in Jaimini.
His famous Udasis
In the life of Guru Nanak, his famous udasis or spiritual mission through wanderings were divided into four parts: East (1493 to 1504) South (1506 to 1510) which fall in Jupiter mahadasha, the twelfth lord. Then North (1512 to 1514) and West (1514 to 1519) which fall in the mahadasha of Saturn-Venus.
Samadhi (at the age of seventy 1539)
His samadhi (leaving for heavenly abode) at the age of seventy would fall in Mercury-Mars. Here Mars is in the second house and Rahu in the lagna. The day was 22 September 1539.
For so great a spiritual person, no astrologer can be satisfied with any horoscope which does not have distinct Mahapurusha yogas as we have in the traditional horoscopes of Lord Rama and Lord Krishna. The horoscope prepared here on the basis of historical researches gives us as many as four exalted planets, Sun, Moon, Venus, and Jupiter which appeals immensely. Lord Rama was born during the mid day and Lord Krishna during mid night, in that auspicious moment which we astrologically describe as Abhijit muhurta which is what the midnight birth of Guru Nanak reminds us of.
The horoscope cast should satisfy historical scrutiny as we can see again thus. In a website the information given about Guru Nanak is :
Siri Guru Nanak Dev Ji
Share their earnings with others who are less fortunate - "Vand Chakna"
Always remember God - "Naam Japna"
Live a honest Life and to earn their living with honest labour - "Kirat Karna"
Date of Birth October 20, 1469 ( it cannot be corect if a proper calculation is done from the date samadhi).
Total Age 70 Years, 5 Months, 7 Days
If from October five months are deducted we cannot get October birth at all. It seems that Sikh historians are agreed upon the third day of Baisakhi as the date and astrologically it is the only date with midnight as birth which shows the great effulgent spiritual personality that Nanakji was, with four exalted planets. There are other noticeable features here. The third house has exalted Venus aspected by exalted Jupiter from the seventh house and the fifth house has exalted Moon, showing his exquisite, immortal poetical compositions of unparalleled spiritual merit. It shows also his musical talents which he undoubtedly had as he sang them while Mardana played on rabab. In the life of Guru Nanak, it is often mentioned that when he got divine inspiration to compose his immortal poetical compositions he asked Mardana to play on the rabab and he sang. It is how posterity got his famous works mostly. It is not known if Japuji Saheb and Asa-di Vaar were also composed similarly.
Two facts known to Sikh historians seem to be without dispute. His date of Samadhi was 22nd September 1539 and that he lived for 70 Years, 5 Months, 7 Days. Therefore all the horoscopes of Nanakji depicting October or November birth must be wrong.
It is well known that the great Sikh guru were all ideal householders but what is less known is that the influence of Nanakji must have much wider through Nanak Panthi who are known neither as Sikhs nor as Khalsas. It is my conjecture that during his famous Udasis, Guru Nanak initiated spiritually many persons all over India and the subsequent Sikh Gurus too kept alive the tradition. They were Guru Nanak, Guru Angad (1504-1552), Guru Amardas (1479-1574), Guru Ramdas (1534-1581), Guru Arjan Dev (1563-1606), Guru Hargobind Singh,(1595–1644) Guru Hari Rai (1630-1661), Guru Har Krisan Dev (1656-1664), Guru Teg Bahadur (1621-1675) and Guru Gobind Singh (1666-1708). After this from 1604, the holy Granth Saheb became the ultimate Guru much like Srimad Bhagwatam into which Lord Krishna entered.
Did these great Gurus initiate many people who did not stay in Punjab, were not known as Sikhs or Khalsas but led spiritual lives as instructed by Guru Nanak in different parts of the country? The question has to be explored as in India we do not write much about the great spiritual traditions as we reconstruct some forgotten chapters of history. For instance, the Guru of the great spiritual saint of Bengal, Prabhu Bejoy Krishna Goswami was a Nanak Panthi by the name Brahmanandaji of Gaya. From Prabhu Bejoy Krishna, the nanak panthi sadhana spread among the Bengalis widely. The great spiritual undercurrents of India originated in one place but spread widely in India. Swami Raghevandra of South India initiated the famous Ramananda the guru of Kabirdas. And the famous Bengali saint of the twentieth century, Sitaram Onkarnath was a Kabir Panthi. Similarly, there are thousands of Nanak Panthis in India who trace their sadhana from Guru Nanak.
Sikh historians have missed this most important fact that the influence of Guru Nanak was much greater in India through Nanak Panthis in keeping with the great unifying spiritual integrity of eternal India through surface differences and tensions.
This article was originally published in the Journal of Astrology April-June 2003 issue.
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