Panchanga: The 5 Limbs of Time

Panchanga: The 5 Limbs of Time

Jyotish is the study and understanding of astral or cosmic lights in the sky and panchanga is a tool for the application of that knowledge. As students of astrology, we are interested in understanding the meaning, influence and timing of these lights and what effect is has on human life on Earth. By these lights of course we speak of the luminaries, the reflected light of the grahas, as well as the light of the stars of the Nakshatras.
In this course we will delve deeply into how to use the panchanga in Jataka (natal horoscope) and touch on its use in muhurtha (electional astrology) as well.

Since the focus of this course is on Jataka there will be ample time spent on analysis of the five elements of Panchanga in charts of well know people as well as students in the course (who volunteer).
Classes will be limited in size so that students receive the attention and scrutiny of homework assignments to insure proper understanding of the contents of the course.

So what is the panchanga?

Panchanga is Sanskrit for “five limbs” pancha – five and anga – limb. These five limbs are linked to the five elements: fire, water, earth, air, akash. The entire world is made up of these five elements or panca tattvas and the mind experiences the world through these elements. In our birth charts we can see if there are incompatibilities and difficult combinations we may want to heal, or be forewarned and able to prepare as needed to address the flaws and weaknesses of one or more of the limbs so we can apply a remedial measure…”a stitch in time…”.

What are the five limbs and how are they linked to the 5 elements?

Vara is the lord of the day and is ruled by Mars, the ruler of the Fire element.
Vara is based on the day we were born. From Vara we understand more deeply if there is a flaw in our energy levels and it gives vital information regarding our constitutional strength, health and well being.

Tithi is the lord of the lunar month or phase of the Moon and is ruled by Venus the ruler of the Water element.
The Tithi is the phase the moon was in when we were born. The deities symbolize each tithi which gives us an understanding of our emotional nature, whether we are more of an introvert or extrovert more socially oriented or more individualistic, etc.

Karana is the lord of the half tithi and is derived from the tithi. It is ruled by Mercury the ruler of the Earth element. The word karana comes from the same Sanskrit root as karma meaning “to do”. Therefore it has to do with our karma or work in the world, career, and what and how we produce.

Nakshatra, Sanskrit for “night space or place” is the space the Moon travels thru in one day and is ruled by Saturn, the ruler of the air element. Each of the 27 nakshatras are connected to a rich archetypal mythology which is essential to unpacking the character and nature of our mind and personality as well as our dilemmas and issues. We will study these myths and symbols in the tara system that is brilliant at showing the unfolding of karma in our charts.

Yoga is the combination of the movement of the Sun and the Moon and is ruled by Jupiter, the ruler of Space or the Akash element.
Tithi and yoga are about the movements of the Sun and Moon; the former is the subtraction of the movement of the Moon from the Sun and the latter is an addition of the movements of the Sun and the Moon. Therefore, yoga (yoke) is the coming together of the Sun and the Moon – the universal father and mother principles. It shows our capacity to cooperate, how we are in groups and when times are good to have or participate in group events.
It is the Akash tattva; the binding or “jello” that hold people and events together. There are 27 yogas, some supportive of “good space” and some difficult or creating “bad space.” Yogas are very useful in muhurta; choosing the best time to have a party, gathering, conference or best times for having a collection of people get along and enjoy a planned event.

This course is recommended to all students of Jyotish who have a basic foundation in the principles of Jyotish.

The course is 12 weeks long beginning on January 21, 2015 at 5:30 to 7:30 PM PST.

Taught by SueAnn McKean. Certified Jaimini Scholar and student of Parasara Jyotish.

Location: skype. Sueann2268

Cost: $225.00, after Dec 21 $265.00. $265.00 with interactive feedback on homework, test(s), certification. $295.00 after Dec 21.

We will learn to calculate, understand and use these 5 elements of time in birth charts.


About sueannmckean

My search for meaning in life turned serious in my late teens and included a sustained practice with Maharishi Mahesh Yogi's Transcendental Meditation in 1973 that I practice still today. In 1973 I also became a student of Aikido with Shihan Robert Nadeau Sensei in the Bay area of California, received a black belt (currently 6th dan) and have been teaching Aikido for the next 37 years, mostly at Bay Area dojos in Los Gatos, San Francisco, San Jose, Mountain View, Palo Alto and colleges : Hayward and San Jose State Universities, Sofia University, Institute of Transpersonal Psychology (ITP) and De Anza College. I had a 6 year career as an international bodybuilder, was a finalist in the pro- world championships 3 times and in the IFBB Ms Olympia in 1986 & 87. I was introduced to the Enneagram in 1978 and became a certified teacher in the narrative tradition with Helen Palmer and David Daniels in 1993. I integrated the Enneagram with principles of Aikido in my teaching. In 1990 after a pilgrimage to India I reconnected to Vedic wisdom with a focus on Jyotish (Vedic Astrology), a study that really took off when I met my guru, Pundit Sanjay Rath in 2005. Since 2007 I went to the Himalayas yearly to study Jaimini Sutra Upadesa and Brihat Parasara Hora Shastra graduating in 2011 as a Jaimini Scholar from the 5 year Master's Course. For nearly 3 years, from Jan. 2010, I mentored in the Parasara Jyotish program created by Pundit Rath. I am a level 1 & 2 teacher in the AIAC (Ancient Indian Astrology Classes) founded by Chicago based Guru Souvik Dutta. (see the Ayurjyotish course in 2012, the Visesa Lagna course in Jan. 2014 and Panchanga course in Jan. 2015) Teaching what I am learning deepens understanding and joy. Currently I have a Level 1 foundation course going on skype (Sept. 2015 I live in the hills overlooking the San Francisco Bay with my husband Jack Labanauskas, publisher of the Enneagram Monthly, also a practitioner and student of Vedic wisdom.
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