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Calendar is signature of time and the shows the arrow of time in all the three dimensions - past, present and future. A nomadic tribe in Afghanistan does not have a calendar. Only two incidents mark the differences in their lives - the winter, when they climb down the mountains and the summer when they go up hill along with their animals. They need not have to plan anything at all and hence there no need of a calendar. They throw away their dead in the icy rivers. They do not have history, culture (samskara), purana or anything to identify with. Calendars give inheritance and also identity crisis. In my younger days, Yagnavalkya and Maitrei samvada (Brihadaranyaka Upanishad) was enchantingly delightful. I perceived, I belong to the culture of this great rishi. Then, one day I discovered Yagnavalkya, the eater of soft flesh of cows! The source can not be disputed - I discovered this through the works of Sanskrit maha mahopadyaya, supreme court lawyer Shri Kane, in his books History of Dharmasutras!
My grandfather wore uattariya and dhoti; he never forgave my father for giving up Brahmanism by wearing shirts, pump shoes and Mysore peta (cap). I identify with my linage but do not wear uttariya, pump shoes or peta. My grandfather proclaimed, there were neither a drunkard, a meat eater, a thief or a cheat in my linage. Of course, there were some references to my ancestors' penchant in eating [ब्राह्मणो भोजन प्रियः - Brahmin likes eating. There are other versions: ब्राह्मणो बहुजन प्रियः and ब्राह्मणो बहु जनप्रियः]. When you say, I belong to the linage of these purohits - the incarnates of honesty, dignity and devotion, I feel immensely happy. But when you say, I belong to the linage of Yagnavalkya, the meat eater, I am at unease. Yet, Yagnavalkya and maitrei belong to me! We have given up meat eating since my great great and the greatest grandfather's time. By the way, the liberals quote from selected works only. There are several dharma sutras that lay down meat eating as improper. The liberals obviously suffer selective amnesia. Gregorian calendar causes schizophrenia in me. Am I a British to follow the calendar of our former colonial rulers, who still have not given up their pounds and gallons for kilograms and liters? The national calendar is chandramana and the national gazette only uses this date. Hindus take birth and live the whole life in Gregorian calendar. The first death anniversary is on shukla paksha dwiteeya, kartika masa and not on 24th November! Paradox - Eye specialist can not see.
National pride is not reflected in celebration of New Years Day. There is nothing inappropriate in a "Happy New Year" but let us not forget to wish each other on Ugadi too. You can not close your windows, even if you are a fundamentalist or a Marxist. Culture too blows like wind across Atlantic to Asia. There are always cultural collisions, modifications and mutations. Like the British, let us be proud of our culture, let us not forget Tolä, Sèr, Ratti and Ugadi. I would not brag, I practice vedic astrology! I am engaged in study of Vedas since my childhood. Several times I have gone through Atherva and many mandalas of Rigveda. Nowhere, I could find references to predictive or election astrology. Use of astrology was restricted to fixing the dates festivals, though there are mentions to predictive astrology and muhurta in puranas. That means, predictive astrology is not vedic! To be a religious Hindu, you need not have to believe in astrology, it is not a part of vedanga. Vedanga jyotishya is a calendar with solar months like madhu, madhava etc.,! Let world famous astrologers in Delhi, Noida and Bangalore say, they practice the sacrosanct vedic astrology (Lord Vinayaka bless their ignorance). Generally, astrology is laced with fatalism. Birth of Jesus is linked to the prophecy, 'This was to fulfil the passage in Prophet Isaiah' (Mathew 4:14). Ashariravani revealed to Kamsa that the 7th child of his sister would kill him! But the great Greeks were not to accept such fatalistic view and maintained "astra inclinant, non necessitant " (star incline, do not determine). Be Greek heros and not fatalistic ravens. Like school children who have certain restrictions yet are free within the school compound, we are free and also governed by the environment, indicated by the planets. फलानि ग्रहचारेण सूचयन्ति मनीषिणः। को वक्ता तारतम्यस्य तमेकं वेधसं विना॥ - फलदीपिक "With the help of planetary movements, mortals can only give indications of what is to happen; who else other than BRAHMA can tell with certainty as to what will definitely happen" - Phladeepika. Only God almighty knows for certain and astrological analysis is mere human effort to understand infinitesimally huge uncertainty. Remedial measures help us to improvise on the given birth but will not altogether change the life.
On the last day of the year, mid night strikes and no star falls from the sky leading to Bethlehem. Men and women, without reservation loaded of alcohol are on the ground and nobody is awake when the new year chimes. Mundane charts in ancient India are done for lunation - Hindu month is not merely a numbered day but a day that lives with phases of moon. When poornima (full moon) does not occur in the month, the moth is extended and when poornima happens early, it is cut short. The corrections are done every month and not once in four years as in Gregorian calendar.
Many of my clients have been repeatedly asking about Corona virus infection. On the onset, I should clarify, I am not an expert in mundane astrology. However, as a man who fiddled astrology for many decades - for fun and funds, I venture to say that there is no swift rescue in near future. Situation will be brought under control during mid April to mid May. From 17th August to 16th September, there is confidence in mankind that they can survive! Virus looses the venomous teeth and effective treatment is established during late July to early September of next year.