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Indian council of Astrological Sciences (Regd) Chennai

JyotishPraveena Examination Questions from Astronomy relevant to Astrology

Qno :6 Which is compulsory Questions The different models are given below

1. The Planetary positions of a native ,at a birth time born on 20.08.1944 is given

Body Sign Position Degree Minutes

Ascedant Leo 14 46
Sun Leo 3 50
Moon Leo 17 10
Mars Virgo 1 13
Mercury Leo 28 34
Jupitor Leo 12 13
Venus Leo 18 40
Sat Gemini 14 14
Rahu Cancer 2 49
Ketu Capricon 2 49

Calculate the following

A) The day of birth (B) Thidhi
C) Names of the cellar Constellations in which the Asc and the other planets
positioned (D) Yoga (E) Karna

Q No 2 (Second Model)
Based on the planetary Position of SUN is 166 Deg 54 mts and Moon is 118 Deg 1
mts at the birth time of a native born on 02.10.1869 calculate the following
A Dat of birth B Thidhi C Yoga D Karana E Names of the Solar Constellation in
which Sun and Moon are positioned

Q No 3 Third Model
On 09 12 2007 The longitude of Sun is 232.35 and Moon is 224.52 at 06.24 hours.
Sun rise time at Chennai is 06.23 hrs
Calculate the following
Constellation of Sun ,Moon, Sun Constellation Pada
Thidhi Calculation and name of the Thidhi on that day
Karna Calculation and name of the karna on that day
Yoga calculation and name of the Yoga on that day
State whether it is a New Moon Day or not with reasons?
These are the short answer of questions which are repeated every Year

The following questions are repeated in all papers which were categorized as follows

1. Solar Eclipse with diagram

A solar eclipse occurs when the Moon passes between the Sun and Earth, and the
Moon fully or partially blocks ("occults") the Sun. This can happen only at new
moon, when the Sun and the Moon are in conjunction as seen from Earth in an
alignment referred to as syzygy. In a total eclipse, the d
isk of the Sun is fully
obscured by the Moon. In partial and annular eclipses only part of the Sun is

2. Phases of Moon
re are fifteen phases of moon starting from Amavasya. They are Padyami,
Vidiya(Dwiteeya), Tadiya (Triteeya), Chaviti (Chaturthi), Panchami, Shasti,
Saptami, Astami, Navami, Dasami, Ekadasi, Dwadasi, Triodasi, Chaturdasi and
Paurnima. The same phases will be cycled again from Paurnami and ends with

3. Retrogression of Planets
The apparent backward motion of a pla planet
net in its orbit is called as Retrogression
of the planet.
All the planets are in clockwise motion round the zodiac. Sometimes, planets
appear to have a backwards motion due to the relative position and motion of
planets. When a planet instead of moving fo forward
rward appears to recede in the zodiac
or has a backwards motion, it is called retrograde.

A planet in retrograde motion has a special significance in astrology. The effects

that a planet produces when in retrograde motion are far different from than the
ones they exert while moving directly. Retrogression or Vakrabala makes a planet
unusual or perverse in results. The retrograde planets are usually represented with
R in front of its position. These are also known as Vakri planets in hindu

The Sun and Moon are never retrograde. Mercury is retrograde three times in a
year, Saturn and Jupiter every year for some months and Mars and Venus are
retrograde once in about two years. Rahu and Ketu are always retrograde which
means that they always move backwards.

It is said that malefic planets in retrogression always give bad and unfavourable
results. Benefic planets when are retrograde always provide good and auspicious
results. Some scholars believe that results of a planet in retrograde state depend
on its position in the previous house i.e the house from which it recedes while
others opine that it gives the results of the house into which it recedes and not of
the previous house.

4. Lunar Eclipse
A lunar eclipse occurs when the Moon passes directly behind the Earth into its
umbra (shadow). This can occur only when the Sun, Earth, and Moon are
aligned (in "syzygy") exactly, or very closely so, with the Earth in the middle.
Hence, a lunar eclipse can only occur the night of a full moon.

5. Meteors and Meteorites

Small pieces of space debris (usually parts of comets or asteroids) that are on a
collision course with the Earth are called meteoroids. When meteoroids enter the
Earth's atmosphere they are called meteors. Most meteors burn up in the
atmosphere, but if they survive the frictional heating and strike the surface of the
Earth they are called meteorites.

6. Lunisolar Year
A period of time, at the end of which, in the Julian calendar, the new and full
moons and the eclipses recur on the same days of the week and month and year
as in the previous period. It consists of 532 common years, being the least
common multiple of the numbers of years in the cycle of the sun and the cycle of
the moon.

7. Zodiac and Constellations

The zodiac,is a circle of twelve 30 divisions of celestial longitude that are
centered upon the ecliptic, the apparent path of the Sun across the celestial sphere
over the course of the year. In other words, zodiac is the belt extends 8o to9
north or south of the ecliptic, as measured in celestial latitude. The paths of the
planets remain close to the ecliptic, within the belt of the zodiac.
The twelve divisions of the zodiac are called signs. Essentially, the zodiac is a
celestial coordinate system, or more specifically an ecliptic coordinate system,
which takes the ecliptic as the origin of latitude, and the position of the sun at
vernal equinox as the origin of longitude.
The twelve divisions are named as Aries, Taurus, Gemini, Cancer, Leo,
Virgo, Libra, Scorpio, Sagittarius, Capricorn, Aquarius and Pisces.

8. What do you know about Ayanamsa and why different Ayansamsa are
The longitudinal difference between the Tropical and Siderial zodiac is called as
Ayanamsa. This longitudinal difference is 50.3 per year. The calculation of
Ayanamsa is very important for determining planetary positions, divisional
charts, Dasas, transits, etc.

9. From 2007 year calculate Ayanamsa figure for 2008

10. Keplers Laws of planetary Motion

The laws according to which the planets movearound the Sun were discovered by
John Kepler(1571-1630w) hich are given below.
1. Each planet moves in an elliptic orbit with theSun in one of the oci.
2. Equal areas are covered in egual times by theradius of the planet i.e., by the
line joining theplanet and the Sun.
3. The squares of periodic times of the planets areto one another as the cubes of
their meandistance from the Sun.

11. Comets
Comets differ widely from the planets, both intheir physical state and in the
nature of orbitsdescribed around the Sun. Comets are generally abrilliant nucleus
surrounded by nebulous matterstretching out into an elongated tail. All the
cometsdo not develop tails and many are nothing more than tiny patches of
luminous haze in the sky. They appearshining due to the reflection of sunlight by
The masses and density of comets are small andcan easily be perturbed by
planets. They appearsuddenly in the sky and can be seen for some days,
weeks, or months and when they reach near the Sunand then recede from it and
The comets whose motion can be calculated andthe dates of their return
predicted are called periodiccomets. The .notion of some comets is direct
whilethat of others retrograde. It is to be noted that themotion of all the planets
around the Sun is in onedirection i.e. direct if viewed from the Sun.

12. Why you see the same face of the Moon from the Earth

13. Ecliptic Path

Ecliptic is the apparent annual path of the Sunamongst the fixed stars on the
cosmic sphere. It is inclined at 23028' to the celestial Equator.
Actually it is the Earth that is moving round theSun. So exactly it is the
projection of the earth'sannual path round the sun on the cosmic sphere.
14. Declination and Right ascension
The declination of a heavenly body is its angulardistance from the Equator
measured on an arcperpendicular to the celestial Equator drawn through the
The right ascension is the angular distancebetween the first point of Aries and
an arcperpendicular to the celestial equator drawn throughthe body, this first
point of Aries being on Sayanasystem i.e. the Vernal Equinox.

15. Solstice
At the spring (Vernal) equinox the
declination of the Sun is zero, it being at A
(Figure) on 2lst March,this point is also the
first point of movable (Sayana) Aries. The
declination increases every day as the Sun
is moving on the ecliptic until it reaches the
point C (Figure), the point of greatest
declination i.e. 23028'(N). This point is
called the summer solstice. It happens on
or about 2lst June. After that the declination of the Sun starts decreasing as the
Sunstarts moving southwards. It decreases and becomes zero on (or about) 23rd
September when the Sun reaches at B (another point of intersection of eclipticand
Equator). Now the Sun goes to south of the Equator and its declination becomes
south. It reachesat point D on (or about) 21st December which is called the
Winter Solstice.

16. Celestial Longitude

Celestial Longitude of a heavenly body is the angular distance between the first
point of Aries and an arc perpendicular to the ecliptic drawn throughthe body. It
is also defined as angular distance of theheavenly body measured along the
ecliptic from thereference zero point.

17. Precession of Equinox

By continuous observation our rishis found out that the longitudes of stars are
increasing. They considered two possiblee explanations for this: (1)The stars are
moving but the movements of all the stars were mostly identical which was
impossible. So they discarded it. (2) The first point of Aries twhich is
the,intersection of ecliptic and celestial equator) is shifting backward. They also
observed that there was no appreciable change in the latitudes of the stars. So,
they came to the conclusion that the ecliptic was a fixed plane. Accordingly, it
was necessary to assume that celestial equator and the first point of Aries were
moving in such a way that the longitudes of the stars were increasing. It clarifies
that the vernal equinox is moving backwards. The precession of equinoxes is
mainly due to the attraction of the Sun and the Moon on the protuberant portions
of the Earth at the Equator. The result is that the Earth has a slow wobbling
motion, so that the point in the heavens (the celestial pole) describes a small circle
of about 47o angular diameter round the pole of the ecliptic. Thisresults also in
change in the identity of the polar star from one era to another.
It can be well compared with the wobbling of the axis of rotation of a
spinningtop, which has been disturbed to create wobbling from its steady spin
state,when its axis gets out of the vertical.
The weight of the top which, acting vertically
downwards at G, tends to pull the axis of
rotation AB away from CA (the vertical), but,
due to the fast speed of spinning, it will not
fall down and the axis AB will describe a
cone round AC such that the angle CAB
remains constant. Similarly the expanded
Earth's pole (celestial pole) is revolving round
the pole of the ecliptic in a small circle. As a
result of this, the Equator plane is also
changing and cutting ecliptic plane at shifting
point. The slow backward motion of the first point of Aries is called
the precession of equinox. When the attracting body reaches its greatest
north or south declination, the disturbance is greatest and it is zero when they are
on the celestial Equator. The luni-solar precessioni s in the ratio of 7:3 i .e. the
effect of Moon's attraction is more than twice that of the Sun i.e., two-thirds of
the whole. The total of the two affects amounts to about 50.35 yearly while that
of planetary precession the affect is 0.11 annually. The mean net annual
precession, which is also called general precession, is about 50.24 each year, on
an average.
As the distances of the attracting bodies i.e. the Sun, Moon, planets, asteroids,
comets etc. change, the value of precession also changes. The circle on the
celestial sphere is of only 47O diameter viz DB =47" and takes 25,800 years to
Its effect is important. Due to shifting of poles, the celestial Equator also moves
And, in turn, the position of vernal equinox, that is the first point of Aries, also

18. Terrestrial Equator

In the figure below, the Earth be the sphere, P and
Q be its poles, the great circle AEB will be the
terrestrial Equator. The terrestrial Equator is a
great circle drawn round the Earth but
perpendicular to its axis. The Earth's axis is
passing through its North Pole P and South Pole
Q. In the figure 2 P and Q are called the terrestrial

19. Intl Date Line

The International Date Line (IDL) is an imaginary line on the surface of the
Earth, established by the International Meridian Conference of 1884, that runs
from the north to the south pole and demarcates one calendar day from the next.
It passes through the middle of the Pacific Ocean, roughly following
the 180 longitude but it deviates to pass around some territories and island
The IDL is on the opposite side of the Earth to the Prime Meridian. The Prime
Meridian is used to define Universal Time and is the meridian from which all
other time zones are calculated. Time zones to the east of the Prime Meridian are
in advance of UTC (up to UTC+14); time zones to the west are behind UTC
(to UTC-12).

20. Inner Planets Retrograde when they are between the Earth and the Sun

First of all we take up the case of an inner planet. Let it be Mercury. The
Sun is in the centre around which all the planets, including the Earth, are
moving. Mercury is nearer to the Sun and it completes one revolution in 88 days.
The Earth is away from the Sun and completes one revolution in 365 days. So,
the angular velocity of Mercury is faster than that of the Earth. The arrows in the
figure are showing the direction in which Mercury and the Earth are moving. The
arrow on zodiac indicates the direction in which the longitudes among the fixed
stars are increasing.
As the longitudes are geo-centric, suppose the observer on the Earth is
stationary and Mercury is moving in the direction of arrow with a relative speed
of the Earth (i.e. Mercury's speed - Earth's speed). Let the observer be at O. As we
are considering the observer and the Earth to be stationary and Mercury moving
with a relative speed, let the Mercury be at A and it will be seen at A,; in the
zodiac, it moves further to B and seen at Br; i n zodiac, C, D, are the
corresponding positions of C and D. Here, longitudes are increasing. When it
comes to E, the longitude is increasing at E, which is nearly the position of a
tangent from the observer to the orbit of Mercury. At
E, the planet will appear stationary as you will see that it is going to change its
motion from direct to retrograde. It can be well understood by an example that a
boy runs straight and touches a point and runs back. He will have to stop for a
moment for reversing the speed. Similarly, here the planet will appearstationalry
at E. Consider its further positions 4 G, H and I . I t will be seen that the
corresponding background at the zodiac will be seen backward at F1, G1, H1 and
I1 till it reaches J and its corresponding
position J1, is seen a t the zodiac. It is seen in retrograde motion as its geo-centric
longitudes are decreasing. When it is at J and the line OJ,, which is nearly
tangent to the orbit of the planet, it will be seen as stationary in the zodiac as the
longitudes will
neither increase nor decrease f o r some time. Afterwards it goes to K etc. when
the corresponding position in the zodiac will be K, etc, It will be further seen that
the longitudes have started increasing i.e. the planet has become direct.
Similarly for the outer planets we can justify the retrograde motion by
making the observer move and planet being stationary as the outer planets move
slower than the Earth.
It is to be noticed that the inner planets become retrograde when they are
in between the Earth and the Sun and the outer planets become retrograde when
the Earth is in between them and the Sun i.e. they are nearer to the Earth.

21. Rahu and Ketu are always 180 Degrees apart why?

Rahu and Ketu are the nodes of the Moon. When the Moon crosses the
ecliptic while going from south to north of the ecliptic, it is the ascending node of
the Moon which is called Rahu. The latitude of the Moon at Rahu is zero and is
on the increase from the negative (south) to the positive (north). While crossing
the ecliptic going from the north to the south i.e. the descending node of the
Moon is called Ketu.

Rahu and Ketu are actually not any physical planets but are the points on
the plane of ecliptic where the Moon crosses it. This is the reason for calling these
two as chhaga grahas, i.e. shadowy planets. At these points, the Moon and the
Sun get eclipsed on poornima or Amavasya respectively, if on these tithis they
are on or near these chhaga grahas. These are also called dragon's head and
dragon's tail. These points are not stationary but take about 18 years 220 days i.e.
18.60 years in making a revolution around the Earth. This motion is non-uniform
like that of all planets. Given here is the average period of motion. Their motion
is in reverse direction than that of other planets. In other words, they move in the
zodiac in reverse direction. So, they are said to be having a retrograde motion at
an average or mean rate of about 19.36" each year or about 8" an hour. They
have true or mean longitudes according to whether we have used mean motion or
calculated actual position.

22. Siderial Time

Time, includingsidereal time, can be measured in many ways. Sidereal

day is the time elapsed since the precedding transit of Sayana first point of Aries
to the next transit of the meridian of a place.In other words, one sidereal day is
the time taken by the Earth in completing one rotation with respect to a fixed star
which is equal to 23 hours 56 minutes and a few seconds.
This sidereal day is expressed in sidereal hours and minutes. one sidereal
day is equal to 24 siderear hours. One such hour comprises of 60 minutes etc. It
can be observed that a fixed star which is rising along the Sun will rise about 4
minutes earlier than the sunrise next day i.e. the sun has moved r. in the zodiac.
If an observer continues to observe the sky for one month, he will notice
that the sun has risen l rashi after the fixed star. After one year he wilr notice that
the same star is rising again with the Sun.
As the Earth is moving round the Sun and the Sun is fixed, the earth
completes one revolution around the Sun in one year. The Earth rotates around
its axis once in a day. The same part of the Earth appears approximately 365 + 1
= 366 times in front of the same fixed star in a year (approximately 365 solar
days) or the lst point of Aries has transited the meridian 366 times in a year of
365 days and 367 times in a year of 366 days i.e. a leap year. Therefore, a sidereal
day is shorter than the solar day by 24 hrs/365.25 = 24 x 60/365.25 = 3 minutes
56 sec approximately.

23. Combustion of Planets

The planets are called combust when they are near the Sun in longitudes
and their rays which are the reflection of the Sun's rays are intermingled with that
of the Sun whose rays are much stronger. Therefor, the effect of the planets
becomes much less. The planet under combustion is not visible, being too near
the Sun, and is called Asta.

24. Formation of Seasons

Seasons are formed due to the constant obliquity of the Earth's axis with
the plane of its orbit (90' -23o 28'= 66o32'). The Earth is revolving round the Sun
and completes one revolution in a year = 365.2422d ays which is also called the
tropical year.

In the figure the Earth

is revolving round the Sun.
EQ is the Equator, AB and
MN are tropics of Cancer
and Capricorn respectively.
ab and mn are the arctic and
antarctic circles. N and S are
North Pole and South Pole
respectively of the Earth, and
NS is the axis which is
inclined at an angle of 66 o 32'
to the ecliptic. O is the centre
of the Earth. Consider the
paper on which the figure is
printed as the plane of
ecliptic, the axis NS is inclined to the plane of paper by 66o32 in all the four
positions. In position1, the Earth is at sumrner solstice (right side figure.). In this
case, the North Pole is bent towards the Sun.
The Sun is making an angle of 90o with the tropic of Cancer i.e. it is
shining vertically at it and there is no light at the South Pole as seen by the
position1 in figure. Where the South Pole remains in continuous darkness i.e.
continuous day onthe North Pole and 6 months night on the South Polc. This
happens on 21st June every year. In this case,the Sun remains ebovc horizon for
morc than twelve hoursin Northern hemisphere and less than 12 hours in the
Southcrn hcmlrphcrc "and it is summer in Northcrn hcmirpherc but wintcr in
Southcrn hemisphere.
Earth at the winter solstice (left side figure)in position 3:
Thc Sun is making an agle of 900 with the tropic of Capricorn and noth
pole of earth is away from the Sun making an obtuse angle. In the case, the
position is reverse of position to 1 i.e. in the Northern hemisphere nights are
longer (of more than 12 hours duration), winter season. It is middle of 6 months
long night at the North Pole and middle of 6 months long day on the South Pole.
In the Southern hemisphere, the days are longer than nights and season is
summer. This happens on about 22nd December every year.

Earth on Vernal Equinox and Autumnol Equinox:

In positions 4 and 2, the Earth is on the vernal and autumrial equinoxes.
On these times the Sun shines vertically on the Equator of the Earth and both the
hemispheres and both the poles are equidistant (angular) from the Sun. It
happens on about 21st March and 23rd September every year. The days and nights
are of equal duration all over the world.
In position 1, the Earth is at a greater distance form the Sun (near
aphelion point) and Northern Pole is inclined towards the Sun while the
Southern Pole is away from the Sun. In position 3, the situation is reversed.T he
seasonsa re not due to the distance of the Earth from the Sun but there are two
reasons for it: (1) The Sun remains for a longer time above the horizon every day
in summer than in winter. (2) In summer, the Sun attains a greater meridian
altitude than in winter i.e. the rays fall more slanting in winter than in summer. It
can be illustrated as under: From S (Sun), rays AB are falling on the Earth and
covering lesser area AB in cone SAB. With the similar cone SCD the rays are
covering more area CD on the Earth which can be explained in the way that
shorter surface AB is receiving the same amount of heat as CD (which is greater
surface) is receiving.
The amount of heat received by tihe unit area in AB will be more than
that of CD. So, AB will be hotter than CD.

25. What is the difference between Indian and Western Astrological Concepts
The Vedic system applies the real position of the planets used by astronomers
against the background of certain fixed stars (or unchanging from our
perspective). It is called the "sidereal zodiac". Hence, in the past the term
Astronomy covered astrology as well as the study of the physical heavens.

Western astrology is based on the orientation of the Earth to the Sun, and applies
the "Tropical zodiac". It "assumes" that every year the Sun at the spring and
autumnal equinoxes is at the first degree of Aries and Libra respectively, and at
the first degree of Cancer and Capricorn at the summer and winter solstices. By
this fundamental assumption, the tropical zodiac ignores the Precession of the
Equinox. As the Sun moves along its apparent path as viewed from the Earth, it
does not return to the same position, against the background of the fixed stars, at
the spring equinox on 21 March where it was at the same time one year early. It
is short by 50 seconds of one degree. Over 72 years this difference amounts to one
degree, and over 2160 years it grows to 30 degrees, or one whole sign of the
zodiac. The whole cycle takes approximately 25,920 years.
The effect of the difference between the zodiacs, called Ayanamsha, of 24 degrees
is that 5 out of every 6 people were not born under constellation they have been
lead to believe by the newspapers and western astrologers. For instance,
according to western astrology the Sun is in the sign of Aries from 21 March to
20 April. Under Vedic, or Eastern astrology, the Sun is in Aries from 13 April to
14 May - a difference of 22 days. This positional variation also applies to all the
other planets.

2. Vedic astrology acknowledges only nine planets - Sun, Moon, Mercury, Venus,
Mars, Jupiter, Saturn and the two nodes of the Moon called Rahu and Ketu.
These nodes, recognised by astronomers, are points on the ecliptic path of the
Sun which the Moon cuts every month as it circles the Earth every 29.5 days.
The outer planets - Uranus, Neptune and Pluto - as well as the asteroids are not
used in Vedic Astrology as they are considered to be too distant from the Earth
and small to have an influence on human affairs.

3. The principles governing Vedic astrology have remained unaltered for

thousands of years. On the other hand, Western Astrology has mainly evolved
through research into cosmic influences as each new planet or major asteroid was
discovered, which has then been added to the natal charts and included in their

4. Tropical astrology is largely "Sun" based for the signs of Aries, Taurus, Gemini
etc. may more accurately be called "solar houses". As such, it is primarily
concerned with psychology, the personality and character-types, the solar side of
our life and character.

Sidereal astrology can be called "Cosmic astrology" for it measures the

relationship of the fixed stars and the solar system to ourselves. As such it covers
all areas of life - our desires, talents, responsibilities and potential for spiritual
growth - and has predictive powers to indicate the time and duration of major
events in our life.

5. Besides the 12 signs, Vedic Astrology breaks down the 360 degree circle into 27
constellations called nakshatras, which were originally identified with particular
stars, but these days cover a span of 13 degrees 20 minutes. This more detailed
analysis is used for electional astrology to select the most propitious time to start
any activity, such as a new business, constructing a home etc., or performing
ceremonies such as marriage, coronations or initiations. There is no equivalent in
Western astrology.

6. In timing major events or changes in our lives, Western Astrology uses

progressions and transits. Vedic astrologers may also apply these systems, but
their primary system will be the use of planetary periods, called dasha. Under this
process, each of the nine planets are given periods from 6 to 20 years, totalling
120 years, when their influence will predominate in the individual's life.

Given an accurate birth time, the dasha system can accurately show when each
period of fortune or misfortune will begin and end, and provide actual dates. Of
two people with wonderful careers, good earnings and great accomplishments
indicated in their charts, one may find his niche early in life, while the other must
first navigate difficult waters before finally achieving prosperity. The system can
indicate the timing of such events as well as their extent. It uses as the starting
point the Moon's position against the background of a Nakshatra in calculations
of the planetary periods within the 120 year potential lifespan. Again Western
astrology has no comparable system.

There are other differences between the two astrological systems, such as the use
of hundreds of planetary combinations, called Yogas, in Jyotish Shastra, which
are used to make detailed assessments of the power and influence of planets in
particular areas of a person's life. Knowledge of these detailed rules provides a
more accurate interpretation of a horoscope.

26. Explain why Sun and Moon never retrograde

Moon is never retrograde as it is revolving around the Earth. It moves much

faster than the Sun and when reaches near it is seen in the west and becomes
invisible in the east. Helical setting of, the Moon takes place once in a month. It
sets in east on krishana paksha chaturdashi i.e. it becomes combust and rises in
the west after. shukla paksha pratipada.
When the Moon is within 12o of the Sun it is not seen by naked eye i.e. it
becomes combust.

27. Local Time and Indian Standard Time

28. KshayaThidhi
29. What are the differences between Modern Western and Indian Classical