JYOTISH has following desciplines:
1. Astronomy: Movement of stars, their cycles w.r.t earth, sun etc
2. Muhurt Shastra: You guys know it.
3. Horary Astro or Horashastra : i.e Predictive Astrology
Strictly My opinions:
1. Astrology is not an EXACT science. It is an art or science of probabilities. Now this is a loaded statement : "science of probabilities".
2. By using astrology you can state various probabilities and actions (Sat-Karma/Good karma) that can avert or reduce the ill-effects of them (and increase the good effects.)
3. Astrology is best used for psychological anlysis, natural attitudes that a horoscope / numero / palm / face diaplays and also natural weaknesses they portray.4. Health Issues: Astrology is also a great tool to list down probable deseases a person might have, weaker organs of a person that could give some issues in future. Yoga, Ayurveda, Descipline, Alopathy, Homeopathy (spelling?) etc can help reduce these health issues in advance.
5. Astrology is very good to understand your Karmic Burden and direction / some steps to pay that off by good deeds and not by sufferings. The pull of the destiny after say 20 years coluld be reduced by advanced payments of good-karma.
6. NOBODY can predict death! It is just NOT possible. Every person born has a great possibility of living until the age of 120 years and some esoteric sites would tell you that a person need not even die!! So if someone claims to predict year, month, date of death -- PLEASE hand them to the police! :) You can just mention that so-so period is not good, wear helmet, there could be stomach issues, there could be blood related issues etc etc. You CAN NOT predict death of anybody -- however straight-forward the horoscope is.
7. According to the latest Dan Brown fiction (The Lost Symbol) The forefathers of USA were astrologers themselves (George Washington) and chose the time to built the White House, USA Capitol building and some more strcutures when some xxxx planets/star was in Virgo!! It is a fiction book but not everything in it is fiction. It also recites BhagwadGeeta/Upanishad etc. Linda Goodman also states that the forefathers knew astrology very well and even 4th of July was chosen as per some auspicious astrological formations!!
Comments on Astrology by a great soul:
Following text is taken from "Autobiography of a Yogi" This is straight from Shree Shree Yukteshwar Giri when he replied to Yoganand Paramahans' question: "Why do you suggest me an astrological bangle as I don't believe in it".
There need not be a single line of explanation of what Astrology is about after reading this paragraph(s). I attest that this EXACTLY what I have observed in past 20 years of study of this topic.
"Astrology is the study of man's response to planetary stimuli. The stars have no conscious benevolence or animosity; they merely send forth positive and negative radiations. Of themselves, these do not help or harm humanity, but offer a lawful channel for the outward operation of cause-effect equilibriums which each man has set into motion in the past.
1. "A child is born on that day and at that hour when the celestial rays are in mathematical harmony with his individual karma. 2. His horoscope is a challenging portrait, revealing his unalterable past and its probable future results. But the natal chart can be rightly interpreted only by men of intuitive wisdom: these are few.
3. "The message boldly blazoned across the heavens at the moment of birth is not meant to emphasize fate, the result of past good and evil but to arouse man's will to escape from his universal thralldom.
4. What he has done, he can undo. None other than himself was the instigator of the causes of whatever effects are now prevalent in his life.
5. He can overcome any limitation, because he created it by his own actions in the first place, and because he has spiritual resources which are not subject to planetary pressure.
"Superstitious awe of astrology makes one an automaton, slavishly dependent on mechanical guidance. The wise man defeats his planets which is to say, his past by transferring his allegiance from the creation to the Creator. The more he realizes his unity with Spirit, the less he can be dominated by matter. The soul is ever-free; it is deathless because birthless. It cannot be regimented by stars.
"Man is a soul, and has a body. When he properly places his sense of identity, he leaves behind all compulsive patterns. So long as he remains confused in his ordinary state of spiritual amnesia, he will know the subtle fetters of environmental law.
"God is harmony; the devotee who attunes himself will never perform any action amiss. His activities will be correctly and naturally timed to accord with astrological law. After deep prayer and meditation he is in touch with his divine consciousness; there is no greater power than that inward protection."
"Then, dear Master, why do you want me to wear an astrological bangle?" I ventured this question after a long silence, during which I had tried to assimilate Sri Yukteswar's noble exposition.
"It is only when a traveler has reached his goal that he is justified in discarding his maps. During the journey, he takes advantage of any convenient short cut. The ancient rishis discovered many ways to curtail the period of man's exile in delusion. There are certain mechanical features in the law of karma which can be skillfully adjusted by the fingers of wisdom.