Tuesday, March 25, 2014

Birth Stars (Constellation) and Tree Worship: Belief in Hindu Astrology


The Vedic astrology or Hindu astrology is based on the sidereal or visible zodiac  system. Initially the zodiac was divided into 12 main zodiac signs or rasis. Later Hindu sages added another sub-division after breaking the zodiac into 27 star constellations or nakshatras. Thus a nakshatra is one of 27 sectors along the zodiac. Each nakshatra has a span of 13 degrees and 20 minutes. After that each nakshatra was further subdivided into 4 Padas, or quarters, of 3 degrees and 20 minutes. Each zodiac sign comprise total 9 padas. The constellations are categorized into three main classes: 1. Deva (divine); 2. Manusha (human); and 3. Rakshas (demonic) and each constellation has its own ruling deities.

In Vedic astrology Birthstar is known as Janma Nakshatra or only Nakshatra. Birthstar is the name of the constellation in which the Moon was located at the time of the birth. People strongly believe that those born on the 27 represented stars belonging to the 12 Zodiac signs have their own specific temples (ruling deity), animals, trees and birds for worship.

The concept of Nakshatra temples is based on the belief that there is a correlation between the birth star or constellation of the person and the relationship with the deity in Hindu temples. Worshiping the deity throughout his or her life will bring peace and prosperity.

Tree worship (dendrolatry) and sacred trees play pivotal roles in Hindu religion and astrology. The concept of Nakshatra trees is based on the belief that there is a correlation between each  birth star as well as constellation of Hindu astrology and the relationship with a symbolic tree or plant.  This correlation between the birth star and the tree defines the relationship between the human and the green trees in the environment. Eco Worship is the Worship of Environment through plants or offering prayers to various trees.

Table 1. Birth Star (Hindu Astrology) / Corresponding Tree

01 KANJIRAM ASWATHI 02 NELLI BHARANI
ASWATHY / KANJIRAM
BHARANI / NELLI
03 ATHI KARTHIKA 04 NJAVAL ROHINI
KARTHIKA / ATHI
ROHINI / NJAVAL
05 KARINGALI MAKAYIRAM 06 KARIMARAM THIRUVATHIRA
MAKAYIRAM / KARINGALI
THIRUVATHIRA/KARIMARAM
07 MULA PUNARTHAM 08 ARAYAL POOYAM
PUNARTHAM / MULA
POOYAM / ARAYAL
09 NANK AYILLIYAM 10 PERAAL MAKAM
AYILIAM / NANK
MAKAM / PERAL
11 PLAASU POORAM 12 ITHI  UTHRAM
POORAM / PLASU
UTHRAM / ITHI
13 AMPAZHAM ATHAM 14 KOOVALAM CHITHIRA
ATHAM / AMPAZHAM
CHITHIRA / KOOVALAM
15 NEERMARUTH CHOTHI 16 VAYYAMKAITHA VISAKHAM
CHOTHI / NEERMARUTH
VISAKHAM / VAYYAMKAITHA
17 ELANJI ANIZHAM 18 VETTI THRIKKETTA
ANIZHAM / ELANJI
THRIKKETTA / VETTI
19 PINE MOOLAM 20 VANCHI POORADAM
MOOLAM / VENPAIN
POORADAM / VANCHI
21 PLAVU UTHRADAM 22 ERUKKU THIRUVONAM
UTHRADAM / PLAVU
THIRUVONAM / ERUKK
23 VAHNI AVITTAM 24 KADAMPU CHATHAYAM
AVITTAM / VAHNI
CHATHAYAM / KADAMPU
25 MAAVU POORURUTTATHI 26 KARIMPANA UTHRITTATHI
PURURUTTATHI / MAAVU
UTHRITTATHI /KARIMPANA
27 ILIPPA REVATHY
REVATHY / ILIPPA

Source: Birth Star Trees Travancore Devaswom Board, Thiruvananthapuram, Kerala

4 comments:

  1. I believe that the nakshatra and tithi system are older than the zodiac (rashi) system. The former are mentioned in Vedanga Jyothisha, whereas the latter are only used in the much later Surya Siddhanta onwards. There is no zodiac in Vedanga Jyotisha.

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