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BRIEF HISTORY OF ASTROLOGY

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Bianca
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« Reply #15 on: March 26, 2008, 08:02:24 am »









Planetary Alignments and Ancient Ruins




At Stonehenge in England (built in phases from around 3300 to 2000 BC), the Sun rises up over what’s known as the Heel Stone on Mid-Summer (early August) and sets on Mid-Winter (early February) on a point exactly across on the circle of great stones.

The meaning of these alignments has been debated, but Stonehenge itself played a role in the science of astronomy, and is considered the first astronomical observatory.

At the Great Pyramids of Egypt (built 2600 BC), an astronomer discovered that a King’s burial chamber aligns with both the belt of Orion and Thuban, called the “Imperishable Star” by the ancient Egyptians. For the afterlife-minded Egyptians, these constellations gave the pharaoh two pathways of renewal and resurrection. The study of these types of planetary alignments is called archaeoastronomy.
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« Reply #16 on: March 26, 2008, 08:05:42 am »









The Constellations Become the Zodiac



Across cultures, ancient observers saw creatures and objects in the constellations, and soon stories of mythic importance were told and passed down against this starry backdrop. The movement of the stars and planets had great symbolic significance. In China, with perhaps the oldest astrological system, a planetary conjunction might provoke the rise or fall of ruling dynasties. And in Mesopotamia (present day Iraq) centered around Babylon, the Sumerian astrologer-priests interpreted celestial events as a divine message from the Gods to the earthly kings.
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« Reply #17 on: March 26, 2008, 08:07:27 am »









Arab and Egyptian Beginnings



Though it likely began at the beginning of time itself, findings such as clay tablets with astrological symbols unearthed at the site of ancient Babylon date to about 3000 B.C.. A people known as the Chaldeans are thought to have spread a highly developed astrological system throughout the Middle East and Egypt.

Some believe Mesopotamia is the birthplace of astrology, but Egypt was cited by the Greeks as an important source, as well. 
 
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« Reply #18 on: March 26, 2008, 08:09:32 am »









The Greeks Discover Arab Astrology



The Greeks, led by Alexander the Great, conquered parts of Mesopotamia in 334 B.C. and absorbed its rich astral lore. The Greeks embraced this astrological wisdom and developed it further with schools across the Hellenic world created for its study, the most famous in Alexandria, in Egypt. The word “Zodiac” comes from a combination of Greek words meaning “circle of animals.”






Horoscopes for Everyone



In the Greek world, the Sun signs became part of common knowledge and soon the wider public became interested. Greek astrologers added the time of birth, creating a more nuanced personal portrait that combined both the Sun and Rising signs. Before mostly the concern of the ruling elite, now the individual could study their own horoscope and ponder what fate the stars foretold.
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« Reply #19 on: March 26, 2008, 08:11:28 am »









The Greek Influence Spreads



The Greek astrological system spread as far as India, where the Zodiac and many Greek terms were adopted. But this only added to an already deeply rooted astrological tradition, which included holding Hindu rites to coincide with spring and autumn equinoxes.

Because astrology is the art of finding cosmic meaning in the patterns of stars and planets, it’s been called the oldest science. And for millennia, the study of astrology and astronomy were interwoven into one discipline. In China, astrology enjoys an unbroken lineage, since it never fell into disrepute, as it did during the age of Enlightenment in the West. Today many are taking another look at the wisdom of these earliest cultures and rediscovering that link we all have to the sky above.



http://astrology.about.com/od/thehistoryofastrology/a/AncientsStars.htm
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Bianca
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« Reply #20 on: March 26, 2008, 08:14:08 am »









                           A   B R I E F   H I S T O R Y   O F   A S T R O L O G Y





Posted on the Net in the early 1990s by Dr. Jai Maharaj


The science of astrology originated in Bharat, also known as "India," and has been practiced continuously for more than 8,000 years. Records of astrological knowledge are to be found in the history of all nations and among the relics of all civilizations, past and present.



CHINA  Aside from the Vedic records, perhaps the oldest records of astrological practice are to be found in China. The Chinese have been as scrupulous in preserving their records as the Hindus of Bharat.

CHALDEA  Although mention is made by later writers of famous astrologers in Chaldea, particularly Berosus, who lived about 3,000 BCE, no actual manuscripts of Berosus are available if indeed such writings were ever made. But, undoubtedly the science of astrology was practiced at a very remote period in the history of the Chaldeans and the astrology of the Greeks and Romans was directly derived from this source.

BABYLON  The first mention of astrology as it was practiced by the Babylonians appears to place the period at about 2,500 BCE, but no actual records of literature concerning the Babylonian contribution to the science have been discovered to date.
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« Reply #21 on: March 26, 2008, 08:15:58 am »









EGYPT  It is evident that the Egyptian knew and used astrology many thousands of years before the time of Christ, and the earliest Egyptian astrologer mentioned is Petosiris, a priest who lived during the reign of Nicepsos about 800 BCE. If Petosiris wrote any books on astrology, however, they have not been found. The earliest Egyptian authority on astrology whose works are available today and actually form the basis on which modern astrology is practiced in the Western world was Claudius Ptolemy. Ptolemy was born at Pelusium in Egypt, about 70 CE, and attended the school of Alexandria. His Tetrabilos is the source of many of the errors which have been perpetuated in the modern systems.

PERSIA  The earliest Persian astrologer of whom any record exists was Al Hakim. This famous astrologer lived and practiced his science during the reign of Darius. Al Hakim is reputed to have written many books, th most widely mentioned by later historians being the Judicia Gimaspia. If this work or any other writings of Al Hakim exist today, they have not been made available for general inspection. However, Al Hakim achieved fame because of some amazing predictions, not the least popular of them being the birth of Jesus.

ARABIA  Astrology is and always was held in great veneration by the Arabs. This region is the birthplace of many learned astrologers and wise men. They traveled extensively and brought their knowledge with them into Greece and Rome. Some of their writings have come down to the West through the Greeks and Romans, but in such fragmentary form that they are of little practical use today. Such fragments as have been preserved, however, furnish indubitable proof that the technique of the Arabian astrologers was of a very high order, indeed. Records of a nomadic people, though, are difficult to obtain. 
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« Reply #22 on: March 26, 2008, 08:28:32 am »









BHARAT (India) 




In Bharat records exist today which point clearly to a highly developed knowledge of astrology as far back as about 6,500 BCE and actual manuscripts are still extant which were written about 3,700 BCE.

Some of the originals have been destroyed or lost but actual copies of these originals were made by alter astrologers. These are to be found in the libraries of Maharajas and in the libraries of certain states in Bharat.

Actual, detailed records of astrological science are continuous from about 6,500 BCE.

One of the earliest authors of Vedic astrology, copies of whose work are still to be found, is Pita
Maha who wrote a treatise on astrology called Pita Maha Siddhant(a). He lived and wrote this book about 3,000 BCE.

Five hundred years later, another author-astrologer named Vashishtth(a) wrote several books on astrology, astronomy and philosophy. His most important work, and one which was used as an authority by all subsequent writers on the subject, is Vashishtth(a) Siddhant(a), but he wrote may other equally erudite and authoritative texts such as the Panch Siddhant(a) Kosh(a), Soory(a)
Siddhant(a), Nityanand(a), Brhat Jatak(a), Aryabhat, Mansagari, Ranveer, and the Laghu Parashar.



E. M. Plunkett writes in his book Ancient Calendars and Constellations:

"The opinion of the Greek writers at the beginning of the Christian era may be quoted as showing the high estimation in which Indian astronomy was held.

In the Life of Appollonius of Tyana, the Greek philosopher and astrologer, written by Philostratus about 210 CE, the wisdom and learning of Appollonius are set high above his contemporaries because he had studied astronomy and astrology with the sages of India."



In a book called You and Your Hand by the late Count Louis Hamon, known better as Cheiro, this statement is found:

"People who in their ignorance disdain the wisdom of ancient races forget that the great past of
India contained secrets of life and philosophy that following civilizations could not controvert, but
were forced to accept.

For instance, it has been demonstrated that the ancient Hindus understood the precession of the equinoxes and made the calculation that it [a complete cycle] took place once in every 25,870 years.

The observation and mathematical precision necessary to establish such a theory has been the
wonder and admiration of modern astronomers. They, with their modern knowledge and up-to-date instruments, are still quarrelling among themselves as to whether the precession, the most important feature in astronomy, takes place every 25,870 years or every 24,500 years.

The majority believe that the Hindus made no mistakes, but how they arrived at such a calculation is as great a mystery as the origin of life itself."



Jai Maharaj, Jyotishi, Vedic Astrologer

http://www.flex.com/~jai
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« Reply #23 on: March 26, 2008, 08:31:05 am »









                             








                                       




Astronomically, the Sun is at the centre, or heart, of the solar system. Without the Sun, there would be no

light or life and, indeed, no solar system. The Sun in the birth chart represents our centre of gravity and

our centre of consciousness. When the Sun is shining, all is well with the world.
                                                                                                                                             
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« Reply #24 on: March 26, 2008, 08:38:45 am »









Early Concepts of
Heavenly Influence
Laura Laurance









C H I N A


The oldest evidence of astrological study and practice are found within China.

These developments predate those of Mesopotamia, dating back thousands of years.

The ancient Chinese were meticulous in preserving their astrological records.

Even today we may respect their comprehension of the heavens.

By 2001 BCE the astronomers of China had determined the length of the year to be 365 days as
well as the cardinal points of direction. They also clearly mapped the paths of the Sun and Moon
well enough to predict eclipses.
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« Reply #25 on: March 26, 2008, 08:41:40 am »









INDIA

Current records in Bharat indicate a well developed knowledge of astrology dating back to far ancient times. Remnants of work still exist from sometime around 3,500 BCE. Although most of the original manuscripts were lost, certain Astrologers reproduced their own versions of these earlier works. Some of these copies can be found in libraries belonging to Maharajahs.

Apparently, Indian astrology was held in very good standing elsewhere in the literate world of the time. In his book, Ancient Calendars and Constellations, E. M. Plunkett writes "The opinion of the Greek writers at the beginning of the Christian era may be quoted as showing the high estimation in which Indian astronomy was held. In The Life of Appollonius of Tyana, the Greek philosopher and astrologer, written by Philostratus about 210, the wisdom and learning of Appollonius are set high above his contemporaries because he had studied astronomy and astrology with the sages of India."




Indian Sun God
in his chariot.

There is still much that remains unknown about the function of ancient megalithic monuments found throughout the world. In most cases it is still uncertain who the actual builders were. What we do know, from contemporary observations, is that most of these sites were used for astronomical observation. The dominant theory places their function within agricultural ritual.   
Human observation of the movement of planetary bodies dates far back into prehistory. Above, an artist's speculation of Sun worship at Averbury.



"Astrology does not offer an explanation of the laws of the universe, nor why the universe exists.
What it does, to put it in simplest terms, is to show that there is a correspondence between macrocosm and microcosm. In short that there is a rhythm to the universe, and that man's own life partakes of this rhythm."

—Henry Miller
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« Reply #26 on: March 26, 2008, 08:43:59 am »









MESOPOTAMIA

Astrology's ancient beginnings are also traced to Mesopotamia at least as far back as 2001 BCE. These early records reveal a complex cosmology in which the Sun, the Moon and the planets represented gods who possessed the power to direct and intervene in the course of physical events.


BABYLONIA

These early concepts progress through the growth of Babylonian civilization. Fundamental to this world view, was the idea that the planets had a divine nature and the ability to influence human destiny. The Babylonians established a pantheon of gods, each possessing dominion over a particular area of human experience. For instance, Mercury, the god of the intellect was seen as quick and cunning, with a special quality of calculating intelligence. Mars was seen as the ruler of violence and war; Jupiter, a kingly figure and sovereign of men; Saturn, quick tempered and cruel.

Here we can begin to recognize the basic forms of Astrology as we know it today. As Babylonian Astrology evolved, a correlation was recognized between happenings in the heavens and events on earth.


CHALDEA

From ancient Babylonia, we follow Astrology to the fascinating, yet mysterious, Chaldeans. These Mesopotamian people are famed in history as magicians and sages. Two most noted figures were Belshazzar and Nebuchadnezzar. They reigned for nearly 100 years during the seventh century BCE.

The Chaldeans were keen observers and mathematicians. They recognized that the events in the sky followed a pattern. They watched the stars move in fixed order across the heavens and the planets wandering in eccentric orbits, though in much the same plane. It was apparent to them that although the planets had their own individual movement they behaved in coherent cycles. It is here in Chaldea, that the charting patterns of the planets began. The very first Ephemeridae, tables of planetary motion, were constructed during the reign of King Assurbanipal.

In preparation of the new cosmological system, the Chaldeans made use of the twelve main constellations through which the Sun and Moon regularly pass. These were the precursors of the zodiac.





Babylonian
Astrologer
pre-2002 BCE
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« Reply #27 on: March 26, 2008, 08:45:40 am »









Chaldean Skywatcher





 






Astrology

Glossaries

By Theme

Must Know terms


General terms


Horoscope terms


Psychological terms



Sun Sign
Study
Elements

Aries
First sign
March 22 - April 20
Symbol: Ram


Taurus
Second sign
April 21 - May 21
Symbol: Bull


Gemini
Third sign
May 22 - June 22
Symbol: Twins


Cancer
Fourth sign
June 23 - July 22
Symbol: Crab


Leo
Fifth sign
July 23 - August 23
Symbol: Lion


Virgo
Sixth sign
August 24 - Sept 23
Symbol: Maiden


Libra
Seventh sign
Sept 24 - Oct 23
Symbol: Scales


Scorpio
Eighth sign
Oct 24 - Nov 22
Symbol: Scorpion


Sagittarius
Ninth sign
Nov 23 - Dec 22
Symbol: Archer


Capricorn
Tenth sign
Dec 23 - Jan 19
Symbol: Sea goat


Aquarius
Eleventh sign
Jan 20 - Feb 19
Symbol:
Water bearer


Pisces
Twelfth sign
Feb 20 - March 21
Symbol: Fish pair







Mars
Masculine
principle in a horoscope, ruling the signs Aries & Scorpio.




"Astrology interested us, for it tied man to the system. Instead of an isolated beggar, the farthest star felt him, and he felt the star. However rash and however falsified by pretenders and traders in it, the hint was true and divine, the soul’s avowal of its large relations, and, that climate, century, remote natures, as well as near, are part of its biography."

— R. W. Emerson, Regarding Naturalists in his essay on Beauty.
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« Reply #28 on: March 26, 2008, 08:47:31 am »









ANCIENT EUROPE



The great importance attached to the movements of the Sun, Moon, planets and stars was not limited to Asia and the Mediterranean basin. Throughout the world are found systems of Astrological study. In Western Europe this is attested to by the many megalithic sites spread across the continent, and in Britain. It has been documented that one of the principal functions of these sites was to compute the yearly movements of celestial bodies.

The monument at Stonehenge in England is perhaps, the most impressive of these sites. It possesses a sophisticated method of calculating a calendar with great accuracy. The positioning of its stones pinpoints the solstices and predicts eclipses. The layout of this stone circle was submitted to computer analysis, and a wide range of alignments were found showing this monument to be a gigantic megalithic computer. Radio carbon dates estimate that it was constructed about 2500 BCE. It is, indeed, a outstanding and baffling achievement for this Bronze age civilization.

Equally impressive, in its astronomical exactness, is the stone work of Newgrange in Ireland. Thought for a long time to be merely a large passage tomb, this 5,000 year old structure is in fact an observatory which the ancient Irish used to mark the solstice point of winter. Just before 9am on each December 21, the shortest day of the year, the morning sun enters a small 8 inch portal and ignites the interior of this impressive mound. Evidence that these earlier people were not only skilled architects, but learned astronomers as well.
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« Reply #29 on: March 26, 2008, 08:49:00 am »









EGYPT



The Egyptian Pyramids remain singularly impressive to this day among all ancient astronomical buildings. They are aligned to the North Pole and the cardinal points. They were set so accurately, that a 1/12 degree deviation was discovered and accounted for by scientists as Africa's participation in the 'continental drift', rather than an error in Egyptian engineering.

The pyramids served a dual purpose; burial place of the pharaohs, and astrological calculators. There are sloping corridors leading from the faces into the interior. These were used as sighting tubes, allowing Egyptian astrologers to make naked-eye observations of great accuracy from which astrological calculations were progressed.
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