A brief history of Astrology
Astrology has been around for long. But how long?
Well, historians have tracked the roots of astrology to 3rd Millenium BC! It was considered a scholarly tradition till the 17th century and has laid the foundation for many streams of science like astronomy, meteorology and even medicine. Many ancient civilizations devised astrology for the divination of climate changes, natural calamities and also for foreseeing the destiny of the ruling empire.
Origin of astrology:
Babylonian civilization has contributed significantly towards laying the foundation for astrology. They were the first civilization to develop an organized system of astrology back in 2nd Millennium BC. Historians have discovered manuscripts and tablets in the old Babylonian text to substantiate these findings. Astrology was used by ancient Egyptians too and insights from astrological analysis were used by the pharaohs and royal priests for governance and forecasting. Alexander the great conquered Egypt in 332 BC, after which the great emperor built his dream city- Alexandria (3rd- 2nd Century BC). It was during this time period that Egyptian astrology converged with Babylonian astrology to give rise to horoscopic astrology. This incorporated the zodiac system used by the Babylonians which was divided into thirty-six decans inspired from the Egyptian system of astrology.
With the conquest of Asia by Alexander, the Greeks were exposed to the science of astrology which had developed into an organized and scientific stream with contributions from Syria, Egypt, Babylon and other central Asian countries. Astrology grew to become a strong influence in the European culture and by the 13th century, it was made mandatory by law to carry out any complex medical procedures after analyzing the Moon’s position.
Chinese astrology originated in China around 3rd millennium BC. It is very different from western astrology and incorporates principles of Chinese philosophy and culture like ‘Yin and Yang’, ‘wu Xing’ and the lunisolar calendar. When we take a holistic look at the history of astrology around the world we can realize that all the prominent civilizations and great pioneers understood the celestial connection of life on earth and used astrology to gain insights about human destiny.
The Vedic era is considered to be the golden period in Indian history. It was during this time period that Indian culture developed a distinct identity. The culture and learnings which are roughly 5000 years old are still embraced by Indian people. There was significant advancement in theology, philosophy, arts, and literature during the Vedic era. Vedic astrology was an integral part of this great and unique culture. The Vedas have six supplementary texts which are known as the Vedangas or the limbs of the Vedas. One of these is the Jyotish Vedanga--Vedic astronomy and astrology. Great sage Parasara compiled the essence of Vedic astrology into his text known as ‘Brhad Prasara Hora Sastra’ during the Vedic era. This text played a key part in carrying forward the great teachings of Vedic Astrology to the future generations. There are many classic Vedic astrology texts which were written afterward and even in the modern times like Saravali, Jataka parijata and Horasara.
Astrology is a science which has been carried down to us through generations. Modern science has provided us with great inventions and discoveries which has transformed our way of life and we owe a lot to it, for the convenience and luxury we avail on a daily basis. But mankind always wanted to foresee what their future beholds. Expert astrologers at astroYogi believe that this requires a bit of spiritual intervention into science because certain forces of nature may not be quantified by the metrics and measurement tools which we have developed. But that does not mean they don’t exist, it means that we are not advanced enough to measure and analyze those forces with sheer logic.
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