Why then is astrology, in any form, still around, especially in scientifically oriented societies? Part of the reason is historical. There is a very old tradition of using the positions of heavenly bodies to predict world events. For example, Johannes Kepler used planetary positions to predict weather.
Another reason for the persistence of astrology is its apparent continued success, at least in the minds of some people. Many people who "have their charts done" by an efficient Astrologer come away very impressed with the level of detail the astrologer was able to discern about them. Whether this is the result of "astrology working" or the efforts of someone who is (honestly or otherwise) "good at reading people" is another issue.
The significant difference is the way that aspects are treated. Aspects (called drishti in Sanskrit) refer to the ability of a celestial object to influence points in the zodiac away from where that object is located (action at a distance?). In Jyotish, forward aspects are different than backward ones. That is, the aspect 45 degrees ahead of a planet are generally not the same as 45 degrees behind it. In the Western system, this is not considered. Related to this, aspects in Jyotish are planet-dependent, where as the western system assigns the same aspects to each planet.
Jyotish places strong emphasis on harmonic charts (called vargas). Vargas represents different ways of dividing up the zodiac to focus in on specific aspects of a chart (such as moral character or career path). The Western system does not use vargas.
Finally, the outer planets (Uranus, Neptune, and Pluto) are not part of Jyotish generally whereas they are very much a part of the western system. The western system also uses asteroids and stars, and these have no counterpart in traditional Jyotish.
The above statements are generalizations. Some western astrologers account for precession, and some Jyotish astrologers (called jyotishis) use the outer planets. This is one more reason why the principles of Jyotish need to be subjected to rigorous tests.curtecy ( http://astrologydirah.hypermart.net/lunar.htm)
During the day the only one celestial body to be seen is the sun. By night the sky is far more interesting because it is then that we can observe the planets and the stars.
The stars form the basis of the zodiac. The constellations are groups of stars among which you can discover certain patterns. Because the stars are visible in the darkness of night, the nightly sky is the astrologer's real object of study. Due to its dominant presence in the nightly sky it is very obvious to attribute an important role to the moon.
The moon figures against the background of certain stars. The next day it is situated against the scenery of other stars:
This continues until after 27 1/3rd day the moon has taken up its original position again.
Let us suppose that you are an astrologer and do not dispose of a computer or tables, you are therefore solely dependent on your sky observations. Imagine you want to develop a system, a zodiac for example, which will enable you to determine the position of the planets. Obviously you would qualify the moon, being the queen of the nightly sky, as the most important factor. It is also logical to suppose that one night the moon would be in constellation A and the next in constellation B:
As after 27 1/3rd day the moon has returned to its point of departure, thus creating 27 lunar constellations. However, since there is a difference between 27 1/3rd and 27 the moon does not stay exactly 24 hours in a certain lunar constellation. As a matter of fact, it remains 24 hours and 18 minutes in each lunar constellation. In this way a lunar zodiac comes into being:
In India the lunar zodiac is the most ancient zodiac. It was only until later that the solar zodiac became popular. Chinese, Babylonian, Arabian and even Western astrologers also used the Lunar Zodiac. It was used to analyze the birth horoscope but also to determine favorable moments. Thus, according to the tradition, it is supposed to be favorable to undertake a journey when the moon is placed in a particular constellation, or when it is placed in a different constellation, it would be a good time to get married. The emphasis in this book is on the use of the lunar constellations for character astrology and on gaining insight into your spiritual path.
The Moon as (suppressed) Female Principle
THE ZODIAC AND THE CALENDAR [Top]
Nowadays India has adopted the Western calendar. In that calendar months have
a duration which main function is to fit in properly within the solar year.