The embodied spirit master of the body does not create activities, nor does he induce people to act, nor does he create the fruits of action. All this is enacted by the modes of material nature. 5.14
The embodied spirit master of the body does not create activities, nor does he induce people to act, nor does he create the fruits of action. All this is enacted by the modes of material nature. 5.14
All beings are forced to act helplessly, according to the impulses born of the modes of material nature. Therefore, no one can refrain from doing something, not even for a moment. 3.5
The one, who can see that all activities are done by the body, which is created of material nature, and that he himself does nothing, actually sees. 13,30
The bewildered spirit Soul, under the influence of the three modes of material nature, thinks himself to be the doer of activities that are in actuality carried out by nature. 3.27
Even a person of knowledge acts according to their own nature, for everyone follows their natures. What can repression accomplish? 3.33
A person in the divine consciousness, although engaged in seeing, hearing, touching, smelling, eating, moving about, sleeping, breathing, speaking, evacuating, receiving and opening or closing his eyes, always knows within himself that he actually does nothing at all. Because while performing all these activities, he always knows that only the material senses are engaged with their objects and that he is aloof from them. 5.8,5.9
As the embodied Soul continually passes in this body from childhood to youth to old age, similarly the Soul passes into another body at death, and the self realized Soul is not bewildered by this change. 2.13
The person who is not disturbed by happiness and distress, and is steady in both, is eligible for liberation. 2.15
Work done as a sacrifice for Vishnu has to be performed; otherwise work binds one to this material world. Therefore, perform natural duties for His satisfaction, and in that way you will always remain unattached and free from bondage. 3.9
Regulated activities arise from the Vedas, and the Vedas arise from God. Therefore, the all-pervading Transcendence is eternally situated in acts of sacrifice. 3.15
The work of a person who is unattached to the modes of material nature and who is fully situated in transcendental knowledge merges entirely into transcendence. 4.23
The humble sage sees with equal vision a learned and gentle Brahmin, a cow, an elephant, a dog and an animal killer. 5.18
Acintya Bhedabheda Tattva
What it means
Achintya means “Inconceivable”
Bhedabheda means “One Yet Different”
Tattva means “A Statement of Truth”
“Inconceivable Simultaneous Oneness yet Separation for all things is the truth”.
What it refers to
Spiritual philosophies in India each have a phrase that sums up the nature of the particular philosophy, and this is the phrase used by the followers of Sri Chaitanya Mahaprabhu, the great Vaishnava (Vishnu, worshiping) leader of 15th Century Bengal, and all of India for that matter.
As the last 2,000 years have progressed in India, different major leaders emerged each of whom added to a growing understanding of the meaning of the various Vedas, Puranas and Upanishads. These Acharyas or teachers formed schools of thought.
Sri Chaitanya was the most recent of the great Acharyas, and His line of thought was superior to it is predecessors, winning converts from leading positions of all previous schools of thought throughout India. Even though only in His teens and twenties, Sri Chaitanya became the undisputable leader of Vaishnavism in India quickly and easily through debate on the meanings of the Scriptures. His Sampradaya, or school of disciplic succession remains strong and growing today worldwide as one of the most powerful and focused branches of Vedic dissemination, and can be credited with all the training I’ve received, as well as the willpower to do what I do.
So Achintya Bhedabheda Tattva is the expression of Sri Chaitanya, and it summarizes our situation as Souls in this world, and forever in the hereafter.
It means that we are forever individuals, different from the other individuals around us, and yet we are all one in God, in other ways or from another angle of vision. It also means that everywhere, and in everything, we will ultimately find individuality side by side with shared reality.
For Jyotish, this is found in the fact that our oneness with God is seen in that all things about us are already set, hence one with our environment or God ultimately, and on the other hand we feel and perceive individuality or separateness from all things. These are manifestations of the Achintya Bhedabheda principal popping up wherever we look.
Implications in life
Knowing about this principle and trying to understand it in your life leads to greater detachment, which can foster more peace internally. In order to progress in achieving Love for God, we have to reconcile between these two realities constantly because on the one hand we are understanding many things to be caused by God’s plan, yet on the other hand we are understanding other things to be caused by our choices. Both are true always, and the harmonization of them in us and the choices of thought and action that we end up actually doing are dependent upon the interplay of these factors inside us at all times.
Perfect mix with Jyotish
In order to properly study, apply, use and understand Jyotish, one must be familiar with the paradox of Bhedabheda. In fact, the connection runs the other way too, and we can correctly say that through the study of Jyotish one will ultimately understand the Oneness yet Difference reality.
These two do not conflict, but are instead complimentary. Also, the person in the correct understanding of these two does not cease action, or suffer any material loss of motivation. It is not a fact that right understanding leads to lethargy. Right understanding leads to an enlightened mood in life while performing all the duties of life. The external does not need to change much for this understanding to flourish inside.
Free will remains
And free will remains even within the person with this understanding. No matter what we believe, the feeling of being an individual, and the feeling of making willful choices in life will forever remain. But if one simultaneously cultivates the conception of being in the loving hands of the Supreme at all times, on a predefined path of elevation, then the statement of Krishna in the Gita that “even at the time of death the real Yogi is not afraid or bewildered” becomes believable, or possible.
Maya and mahaMaya
Believing in this life as real is called Maya, or Illusion. This trickery is called such because there is another simultaneous reality, which we are also a part of, which is much larger, greater, and encompasses this reality, which is a subset of the greater. But, the Lord has put us in this Maya or state of illusion, for certain reasons.
When a Soul advances on the Lord’s taught path as given mainly in the Bhagavad Gita and Shrimad Bhagavat Purana, then their understanding of the omnipresence of God in all things becomes acute. At that time, the veil of Maya is lifted to a great degree.
There is a greater Maya, called MahaMaya, which is a similar veil but, which serves the purpose of making it possible for those who truly know God correctly, to kind of “forget what they know about Him” so that they can have loving relationships with Him in Vaikuntha.
The point is, there is always Maya, wherever you go, either low grade Maya, like here, or high grade Maya, as in Vaikuntha.
So, Jyotish kind of “blows away” the Maya here. We see things in people’s charts, which they don’t want and don’t expect, and then those things come true. It is a fact. The illusion is blown by real Jyotish.
And yet we have to go on making our choices and living our life until they end. And so it shall be forever it seems, that we will always be progressing and learning, and learning to love, and to accept, to not be the center, and yet to serve the center.
Our lives of one hundred years, as seen from the viewpoint of thousands of years, as seen from the viewpoint in space where the Earth is an insignificant spec, seem like small flashes of bacteria on an insignificant piece of dirt floating in space. How small we are. Yet we are very important to ourselves. This is Bhedabheda manifesting again. Life, That is us, is one with God. But this life, as specs on a piece of dust, that seems awfully small and separate. Can you balance it and remain positive in devotional service to the center?
This is Achintya Bhedabheda Tattva, the ever presence of the Lord in our lives of seeming choice and individuality.
We begin our study of Vedic Astrology by 1st pronouncing to, which version of history we subscribe. I have in my hand a book of Indian Astrology by a modern author in, which what has become the traditional version of history of India, is recounted for the reader. This accepted version of Indian history includes things such as what are known as the Indo-Aryan tribes from Afghanistan and so forth. This kind of history where the Puranas are completely ignored was established by scholars many decades ago, the last century in fact, and it has become standard in textbooks and universities and it is taught and taught and taught ad nauseum.
This version of history taught in Western universities does not at all concur with the Puranas, which are the version of history that India offers and believe for themselves. This other version of history where the Puranas are thrown out the window is completely cast upon India by outsiders basically to patronize the Christian view of world history and the Darwinian view of world history. However, any serious follower of Hinduism or any Vedanga (a Vedanga is a limb of the Vedas such as astrology and Ayurveda) should believe the Puranic version of Indian history rather than the modern speculative view of Indian history.
So we shall now quickly recount the real history of India, very briefly. In the Bhagavad Gita, Krishna says that in each of Lord Brahma's days he recreates the entire material creation including all the Universes and all the inhabitants. Many millions of years of our time pass during the one-day of Lord Brahma. Krishna states that everything that Lord Brahma knows he gives to his sons and disciples.
Else where in the Puranas it is taught, as it is in the Bhagavad Gita, that knowledge such as astrology is taught by Lord Brahma to his sons and other sages that he creates and manifests, and they in turn teach it to all the other humans and it is passed down through the ages. The Vedic version is that all of this wonderful knowledge is God given and it appears at the beginning of creation, it is passed orally down through the ages until Kaliyuga at, which time books are invented and used.
The Brihat Parashara Shastra, the great scripture of astrology by sage Parashara, was written when books were newly invented in this age that we are living, roughly 5,000 years ago. That is very recent history according to the Puranic view, which goes back millions of years. The Puranas are the only source of truly ancient primeval history and information. There are no other scriptures outside of the Vedas and Puranas for truly ancient histories and primeval information such as Vedic astrology.
Sage Parashara states that he received this knowledge through the disciplic succession coming from Lord Brahma the creator. A true follower of the Vedas believes such statements literally and does not attempt to bring any kind of modern understanding of history upon this wonderful ancient wisdom. The scholars who invented this made up version of Indian history. And world history for that matter is all atheists in the eyes of the Vedic understanding of religion, even if such scholars and scientists call themselves Christians or theists. According to the Vedic view they are atheists because they do not have humility towards the words of Lord Krishna, the Vedas and Puranas.
Astrology has been augmented by the realizations and discoveries of sages and various humans throughout the ages. Nevertheless, the original science is coming from the creator who created the Planets and their orbits and Karmic patterns, namely Lord Brahma working under Lord Vishnu.
So the history of astrology is that it comes from the brain of Lord Brahma. He creates the Universe with wonderful artistry, full of mathematical patterns and beautiful, colorful symmetry. These patterns and symmetries are partially taught to his sons and disciples and passed down through the ages orally until Kaliyuga when they are written down, roughly 5,000 years ago. Today we receive astrology through the same books, which have been translated over and over down through the ages. We also receive astrology through the teachings of living humans who practice it, who learned it from other living humans. In this way, through Guru, Shruti and Smriti, or through teachers, hearing from others and from scriptures we learn of astrology and thus the original teachings of Lord Brahma are still available today, however, diluted and vitiated they may be due to the natural course of time.
In the Bhagavad Gita Lord Krishna says that he comes to this Earthly plane from time to time to reestablish religious principles. To get rid of the atheistic types and to enliven the devotee types of humans. Since Vedic astrology is a subdivision of the Vedas, it is also dear to Lord Krishna since He also states in the Bhagavad Gita that He is the knower of the Vedas, He is the compiler of the Vedas and that by all the Vedas He, alone, is to be known.
So from time to time, Vedic astrology, like all other parts of the Vedas, get a boost by the presence of an incarnation of the Lord on Earth. This happened 5,000 years ago with the advent of Lord Sri Krishna on Earth. At that time, Parashara Muni, his son Vyasadeva (the compiler of the Vedas) and many other great personalities were all manifest on Earth. At that time, books were invented, the Vedas were recorded in writing and for the very 1st time in this creationary cycle, Vedic astrology was written down so that it could be passed down through the ages to this very present day.
What you are about to receive is a gift from Lord Brahma, from Lord Vishnu through their devotees like Parashara Muni, Vyasadeva and in a much smaller and less significant way, this humble author, who is also a part of the Lord. You are a child of God. You are receiving this valuable tool so that you can become more enlightened, more illuminated within.
The purpose of Vedic Astrology is simply to know. The word Veda means knowledge. Lord Krishna states that the purpose of all Vedic knowledge is to come to know Him. So this science of Jyotish or Vedic astrology has the chief purpose of increasing your enlightenment and awareness of God's presence in this Universe and in the lives of every one as the Supreme Controller.
One of the chief names of Lord Krishna is Param Ishvara, which means Supreme Controller. A real student of Jyotish will, in a very short time, come to see that all living beings are controlled, and that free will is will only, but that the external facts or events are coming from somewhere other than just our will. As Lord Krishna states in the Gita, the lives of all living beings are formed from combinations of what they desire as well as what they deserve in order to right them in their progressive path of life.
Vedic Astrology shows us the actual fact of what each person is born with in terms of gifts, talents and attributes. Further more it allows us to understand how events will unfold in the life of the living being. In other words, Jyotish reveals the Karmic path that lay ahead both in it is splendorous hill top successes and it is miserable, fearful, dark valleys.
The knower of Jyotish or Vedic astrology carries a massive burden of responsibility. A true Vedic astrologer should be a Brahman because they receive so much knowledge, they have so much vision. A Vedic astrologer can know so much about their own and other person’s lives, therefore, the responsibility is upon them to be excellent persons so that they can show the correct way to others.
Most persons allow themselves much leeway in their understanding of various items. For example, many persons delight in drinking even though it brings out the worst in them. Knowing that alcohol has a Tamasic or "mode of ignorance" nature, the real Brahman avoids it because alcohol, especially in excess will pollute and color his vision, his aura and his ability to emit positive words and vibrations to other living beings. Similarly, having rotting flesh within ones belly is not something we would expect from an enlightened Vedic astrologer.
The real enlightened Vedic astrologer seeks to walk in total harmony with nature, which he knows is simply a manifestation of Supreme Divinity. Being one with Divine Nature, being able to read the cosmos and thus give comfort and wisdom and direction to other persons is the real nature of the true Vedic astrologer. This is ultimately not a material science. This is the science of how God teaches the Souls in this creation lessons. This science is not the possession of humans, it is on loan to humans. Abusing this science causes more serious Karmic reaction. Using it correctly elevates one to a superior spiritual position.
God in Vaikuntha in Lila ever expanding
There are innumerable spiritual Planets beyond this material creation and they are called Vaikuntha (which means “No Anxiety” and is used to refer to the perfect, eternal Spiritual Realm and the Planets there, the people that live eternally on those Planets, and the Vishnu level or Krishna level personally present forms of the Supreme Lord who live there also as the centers of service and love for everyone)
Because the Supreme is Himself unlimited, so also is the spiritual world in all respects unlimited and infinite. It is also ever increasing. Because of this, new Souls are created and trained through the process of living many lives in a material creation like the one we are in. We are needed to populate new sections of the Spiritual World so that we and the Lord can enjoy there altogether. As like a dream, when a life is over, and when all our lives are over, they remain only a vague memory at best, with no ability to harm our real selves. At that time, We are There.
Souls and material world
The material nature is a place where Souls are raised to perfection through emotional experiences, which teach us the science of interrelating with other living entities who all our equals in one sense, yet posted in bodies of varying levels of needs and intelligence. Ultimately, what we learn here is how to interact as positive members of a collective for a central cause. This prepares us for eternal pastimes in the spiritual worlds, or Vaikuntha Planets.
In short, the material world comes about out of a need to train new Souls. The reason for the separation and negative experiences here is that our ultimate submission to the Supreme must feel to us like our own decision. Therefore, we have the God-given and God-designed perception of free will here. We feel like we have free will. But freedom to will does not make us controllers. It is quite obvious that we are not the real controllers of our lives here. But, we feel as if we make our choices and we then get the results. This process leads to personal conviction and the experience of emotional growth.
Free Will and Full Determinism exist side by side here in this world. This you will realize if you study Jyotish. It is a divine paradox, but yet is only difficult to reconcile within ourselves so long as we remain attached to a separate and independent mood from the Supreme Lord. Once we understand the truth about that relationship, which we’ve always had, then we can feel and work with our ability to freely will, side by side with the awareness that our Sweet Lord is pulling the strings, orchestrating our gradual rise, at just such a pace that feels perfectly like ourselves, to ourselves.
Descent of Veda and Jyotish
So again at the beginning of the creative cycle of this creation, when empowering Lord Brahma with knowledge with, which to create, our Dear Lord Vishnu gave the science of Jyotish to Lord Brahma.
Later, Lord Brahma passed the science along to His Sons and other Disciples, from whom is was in turn transmitted to other disciples, eventually reaching Parashara Muni, and other sages of more recent times, who wrote it down, along with the other Vedas.
This is recounted in the opening verses of the Parashara Hora Shastra, and there is no sound reason to doubt the direct understanding as it is presented in the verses.
The Vedic civilization spread it is wings far and wide many thousands of years ago, and all of it is science travelled far and wide. It is no wonder that Jyotish, or the Science of Astrology, was found present in other parts of the world in recent millenniums. These ideas have been around the world since the most ancient of times. They spring up again and again as eras of various civilizations come and go. It is our great fortune that the Sages were most safe in India, and that their writings were preserved in such a nice state over such a long expanse of time, through the ups and downs of the temporary kingdoms and invaders.
Passage through time
As books pass through time, they may be changed, added to, or made smaller. Also, Sanskrit verse is compact, expectant of expansion by the trained Guru, to the sincere disciple. Both of these factors combine to make a reality that today we are dealing with a less than perfect opportunity to learn and assimilate the information.
That being the case, still, it is also a fact that the Lord Sri Krishna has promised, in the Bhagavad Gita, that He shall never abandon His sincere devotee, who should therefore never feel abandoned or alone, and that He will reveal in the devotee’s heart the truth when necessary. Therefore, if we are rightly situated in devotional service to Sri Krishna, we can be humbly expectant of help from Divine quarters to help us in areas that may otherwise be lacking due to the vitiations of the present age.
Comments on other present day opinions
As for other opinions about the History of Jyotish, I have few warm feelings for them. I have a special distaste for the idea that Jyotish was discovered or invented by farmers of the river valleys of Asia, as put forth in a recent book by another author. The popular version of Indian history, and that of the world, which is basically Darwinistic, is very distasteful to me. Persons who speak about or profit by Jyotish in any way who are not devoted to the Vedic Puranic version of History and the belief that a Benevolent Loving God is guiding the creation for a purpose, are not amongst my choice of recommended authors.
There is ample proof of cover-ups and unacceptable assumptions made throughout the studies that form the base of the Darwin model of biological and world history. Furthermore, for those who doubt the existence of God, what is left as the purpose of life? How do the faithless live life without confusion and pain? I personally cannot understand that, though I wish them well in all respects.
In the beginning of the Parashara Hora Shastra, we find that 1st the sage offers his obeisance to Lord Ganesh because Ganesh, the son of Lord Siva and Sri Parvati Devi, is the holder and protector of the secret Vedic sciences. Lord Ganesh really exists, and therefore the all-knowing sage Parashara offers him his humble and sincere praises and respects, known as pranams or dandavats, which means folding hands or lying like a stick before the superior person in respect.
The Parashara Hora Shastra is a conversation between Parashara and Maitreya Muni. Maitreya Muni is also found in many other Puranas. He was another great sage at the time of Lord Krishna 5,000 years ago. You can find the activities and teachings of Maitreya and Parashara being discussed further in such great Puranic and Vedic works as the Mahabharata and Bhagavat Purana.
In the very beginning of the work, Parashara says that the teaching of this science is to be given only to students who are good and peaceful, who honor the gurus or preceptors and the real elders who are completely truthful and fully faithful in the science of God. He says that only if this is done will goodness follow. This science is not for unwilling students, atheists or cheaters.
Parashara Muni 1st starts by describing the creation, the various Gods such as Vishnu, Brahma, Siva, and Mother Bhumi who rules over the Earth. In this way we can understand the true approach to all Vedic knowledge. First recognition is given to the Supreme Lord, the source of everything, which is known as Sarva Karana Karanum, which means the cause of all causes, or the source of even the sources. These early verses of the Hora Shastra are not to be overlooked as simply "Hindu mythology". Rather they are to be taken as fact indeed. No human can say and prove that God does not exist, that Vishnu and Krishna do not exist, and the humble Vedic Astrologer should be of the type that welcomes the faith of their existence, stands up for such theology, and sees it is brightness above all other conceptions.
Since we are in the humble position of being controlled by the nature in, which we were born, we should remember that we have no right to discount the ancient Vedic and Puranic histories. After describing the incarnations of the Lord and a general brief description of the creation, Sage Parashara finishes the 1st part of his book by saying that one who knows and believes all these things can become versed in the knowledge of the past, present, and future. No one else, without believing in this way, will truly be able to understand this science. He further says that one who correctly understands this can be a Brahman (a 1st class person), and those who do not correctly understand this will most likely be reborn (not liberated) and the misusers of this science will be reborn without eyesight (blind from birth).
The Jyotish or Vedic or Hindu Paradigm
The basic paradigm of Jyotish is that we are children of God and we are being lovingly and carefully carried through a very large set of lessons, which takes a number of life times to accomplish. The lessons begin in lower forms of life and end in higher stages of human development. At a certain point when we have learned the lessons of this material creation, we are lifted to spiritual worlds beyond the material creation. While in human life in this material creation, we are sometimes promoted to heavenly Planets. Sometimes demoted to lower Planets than Earth, while at other times we reside on Earth, which is in the middle of the range of possibilities.
While we are here, we are controlled by our loving older brothers and sisters, also known as the DemiGods. The DemiGods, although mortal, live much longer than we do. They have material bodies, but we cannot see them as they live on higher material Planets. There bodies are more closely related to a thought than our Earthen bodies. Therefore, it is appropriate to say that the bodies and lives of the DemiGods are more subtle than our own.
Just as we control and take care of our pets, similarly, the DemiGods control and take care of us. The ant living in our garden may not know that we control the garden because we are so large and completely not present in their little world. Nevertheless, their ignorance of us does not make us less real, or less potent and capable. Indeed, with a single stroke of our spray bottle, we can wipe out an entire colony of ants that never knew it was us who did this to them. Similarly, the DemiGods can with a single stroke or thought annihilate an entire continent on our teeny dust ball in space known as Earth.
The Planets, which revolve within our solar system are physical external representations of small parts of the personalities of certain DemiGods. For example, Saturn is an external representation of part of the personality known as Sanaischarya. Similarly, Venus is an external representation of part of the potency of Shukracharya.
Another way to understand the Planets relationships with ourselves is to see that the guards in a prison did not put the prisoners in a prison, but once the prisoners are in the prison, it is the duty of the guards to keep them in the prison and administer various punishments and disciplinary actions, but also to protect the prisoners from each other to feed them and provide for them. This is exactly like our position. We live in Durga Dham, which means we live in the prison. The DemiGods simultaneously provide for us and punish us, but it is not them who are doing it to us. They are only carrying out the will and order and need of the greater whole, which they are also a part of. They are simply above us, but they also have their superiors.
Amongst the DemiGods, they have their own hierarchy, or rank and order, and ultimately they are all within the material creation except for Lord Brahma who is right on the edge. Sadashiva is beyond the material creation, but barely. Lord Vishnu's Planets alone are securely above and beyond all material consideration and the highest of those is Krishna Loka or Goloka Vrindavan, the personal Planet of the most personal and sweet form of the Lord, Sri Krishna.
So Vedic astrology is the science of the effects of the Planets on all things on our world. Lord Brahma has taught that although what we see is his material creation and in a way an illusory cover to keep us in ignorance, still by studying the movements of the heavenly bodies, we can know the particular way in, which the DemiGods have cast their will and effects upon a person. The positions of the various Planets at the time of a person or thing dictate and control and reflects the way in, which the DemiGods will control and manipulate the life of that person or thing.
All things whether they be humans or just thoughts are born and die within the great cycles within this Universe. We are all creations of the great cycles and systems functioning within this Universe. We are not separate. Vedic astrology is the science of reading the imprint of the Universe upon the human or thing at the time of their birth and from that chart or imprint knowing and foretelling the nature and life events destined to be enjoyed or suffered by that person or thing.
When we study the birth chart of a human, we are studying their life. When we study the birth chart of a question, we are studying the outcome and answer. When we study the birth chart of a material item such as a vehicle, the christening of a House or boat for example, we are studying the lives of those things. Vedic astrology can apply to questions, things, people, pets, etc. All things within this Universe are subject to the controls of the Gods, and therefore, astrology applies to all things.