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Mouni Baba ( 3rd March came the news of the death of Mouni Baba, three days after the mahasamadhi of Shankaracharya Jayendra Saraswati on the last day of February. Jayendra Saraswati, born in 1935, was 82 years when he took samadhi. In the case of Mouni Baba we never knew his age as no one knew it and it was guessed that he was ninety three years old when he took samadhi though some newspapers said that he was 108 years old then.


As the Lok Sabha elections are drawing closer, corridors of power are replete with political discourses. Against this backdrop, astrologers too are busy making predictions, according to their own calculations. Whatever the political pundits might calculate about the formation of the next government, all the astrologers have one common prediction that Narendra Modi’s stars are shining and still the strongest, and according to planetary position, Narendra Modi can once again become the Prime Minister of the country.

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Two distinct developments that must take place, logically, after the introduction of the astrology courses in the universities is that some of the astrologers emerging out of a good training course in these subjects will be most useful counsellors in our society. Then, in course of time, practising astrology without a proper license should be declared illegal, punishable under law.

The need for this must be understood and appreciated.How many people can say with pride and so much confidence after scrutinising astrological predictions given to him by an astrologer forty four years ago, that he has been an optimist because he believed in astrology? How many people can say that the astrologer had never seen him but had made all the predictions on the basis of the horoscope he had prepared after the birth details were supplied to him? The identity of the person who has gone on record saying this will be revealed later. First some advice and caution.

If an astrologer cannot raise your realistic hopes through what he reads by balancing the positive and negative features of your horoscope, do not go to him. Life is neither a story of unmitigated gloom nor of never ending successes. The silver lining seen in encircling gloom is an ability an astrologer with a spiritual background will invariably have.

A greedy one will miss it because his love of the lucre tempts him to demand a fat fees and fatter amount for graha shanti.

Mingling such greed with lack of research for the complex life of modern times can be devastating in its bad effects. But astrologers have their subterfuges, those entrapments about which many complain.

It is what makes astrology looks more a piece of charlatanry than a luminous piece of honest counselling. There is that fear psychology astrologers know how to create through their waffling. They know that some of their clients are familiar with fright producing jargons like sadhe saati, kaal sarpa yoga and Saturn and Rahu periods which in the mind of a layman, already in trouble, are apparitions he wants not to know anything about.

What astrology must do is to make you an optimist. What one can achieve in life within astrologically discernible limitations is what an astrologer with experience and honest intention can see mostly.

Sir Woodrow Wyatt

Here is an instance from what Sir Woodrow W yatt, the famous Englishman who had come to India at the age of 26 says about the superb predictive value of Hindu astrology and how it made him an optimist. (from Who does not
consult stars an article he wrote for Times London in May 1988 and reproduced in the Pioneer, Lucknow some days after.)

“ But such predictions are unlikely to reach anywhere near accuracy, of say, Indian astrologer working on a precise time, date and place of birth
of the person concerned.

I went to India in late 1944. I had a friend, K.M. Pannikar, who was Prime Minister of the princely state of Bikaner. He asked me if I would like the court astrologer, K.P. Sharma, to cast my horoscope emphasising that his accuracy had been sharpened by being put in the local look-up for a day or so any time the made serious mistake over the Maharaja’s immediate future. This was unfair
to Mr. Sharma: frequent applications to an astrologer dilute and muddy the brew.

Mr. Sharma, whom I never met and who knew nothing about me (not that there was anything to know when I was 26), cast my horoscope blind in January 1945 from the actual minutes and second of my birth, which I knew and from the house I was born in.

The full text is published as a three-page appendix to my autobiography, “
Confession of an Optimist”.

“ When I have felt let down I have been encouraged by looking at it afresh because Mr. Sharma foresaw most of the next to come good his in my life. For example, “ The royal planet in the tenth (viz, the Sun) house also
indicated titles and honours in the later half of life”.

I was knighted when I was 64. I was sent to the Lords when I was 68. How the devil could Mr. Sharma tell that and many other things from my stars. But he did. He made amazing accurate predictions for my friend Pannikar which puzzled
us in 1945 but became clear when, unexpectedly ambassador of independent India in Peking (1948 52), he was able, trusted by both, to persuade the
Americans and Chinese communists to begin the negotiations which ended the Korean war. 

"My horoscope is a main reason why I have always been an optimist.”

Wyatt was fortunate because he met a raj jyotishi and not the run of the mill practitioners we see near every fourth lamp post in big cities these days.

In future,properly trained astrologers, reviving the traditions of raj jyotishis, and with the fear of punishment for unethical practices looming before
them always, may become a reality.

It is why the UGC steps to introduce astrology courses in the universities have to appreciated.

But the UGC has no mechanism of knowing the standardofteachers of astrology and the type of students attracted to astrology courses. As it is, in Delhi, there are astrological classes conducted by many attracting students from different strata of our society.

It is not known to many that astrology is the most difficult subject, more
difficult than any subject taught in unversities, with its elaborate methodologies, skill of interpretation in the ever changing social context of modern times. How many teachers are equipped to interpret old astrological maxims in new light and how many students have the mental equipment to avoid the beaten track of
jargons, cliches and the dead weight of dogmatic interpretation given in badly translated books from Sanskrit to Hindi, English or other regional

The complain made by some teachers teaching astrology is generally that most of the students attracted to astrology courses are those who have
failed in making careers and want to learn a trick or two to make money through astrology since in India thousands keep consulting astrologers.

It is a tragic trap into which the astrology course can fall.


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