In Western astrology, astrological signs are the twelve 30° sectors of the ecliptic, starting at the vernal equinox known as the First Point of Aries. The order of the astrological signs is Aries, Gemini, Leo, Libra, Sagittarius, Capricorn and Pisces; each sector is named for a constellation. The concept of the zodiac originated in Babylonian astrology, was influenced by Hellenistic culture. According to astrology, celestial phenomena relate to human activity on the principle of "as above, so below", so that the signs are held to represent characteristic modes of expression. Modern discoveries about the true nature of celestial objects have undermined the theoretical basis for assigning meaning to astrological signs, empirical scientific investigation has shown that predictions and recommendations based on these systems are not accurate. Astrology is regarded as pseudoscience; the twelve sector division of the ecliptic constitutes astrology's primary frame of reference when considering the positions of celestial bodies, from a geocentric point of view, so that we may find, for instance, the Sun in 23° Aries, the Moon in 7° Scorpio, or Jupiter in 29° Pisces.
Beyond the celestial bodies, other astrological points that are dependent on geographical location and time are referenced within this ecliptic coordinate system. Various approaches to measuring and dividing the sky are used by differing systems of astrology, although the tradition of the Zodiac's names and symbols remain consistent. Western astrology measures from Equinox and Solstice points, while Jyotiṣa or Vedic astrology measures along the equatorial plane. Precession results in Western astrology's zodiacal divisions not corresponding in the current era to the constellations that carry similar names, while Jyotiṣa measurements still correspond with the background constellations. In Western and Indian astrology, the emphasis is on space, the movement of the Sun and planets in the sky through each of the zodiac signs. In Chinese astrology, by contrast, the emphasis is on time, with the zodiac operating on cycles of years and hours of the day. While Western astrology is a product of Greco-Roman culture, some of its more basic concepts originated in Babylon.
Isolated references to celestial "signs" in Sumerian sources are insufficient to speak of a Sumerian zodiac. The division of the ecliptic in twelve equal sectors is a Babylonian conceptual construction. By the 4th century BC, Babylonian astronomy and its system of celestial omens had an influence on the culture of ancient Greece, as did the astrology of ancient Egypt by late 2nd century BC; this resulted, unlike the Mesopotamian tradition, in a strong focus on the birth chart of the individual and in the creation of Horoscopic astrology, employing the use of the Ascendant, of the twelve houses. Association of the astrological signs with Empedocles' four classical elements was another important development in the characterization of the twelve signs; the body of astrological knowledge by the 2nd century AD is described in Ptolemy's Tetrabiblos, a work, responsible for astrology's successful spread across Europe and the Middle East, remained a reference for seventeen centuries as traditions made few substantial changes to its core teachings.
The following table enumerates the twelve divisions of celestial longitude, with the Latin names and the English translation. The longitude intervals, being a mathematical division, are closed for the first endpoint and open for the second – for instance, 30° of longitude is the first point of Taurus, not part of Aries. Association of calendar dates with astrological signs only makes sense when referring to Sun sign astrology. Empedocles, a fifth-century BC Greek philosopher, identified Fire, Earth and Water as elements, he explained the nature of the universe as an interaction of two opposing principles called love and strife manipulating the four elements, stated that these four elements were all equal, of the same age, that each rules its own province, each possesses its own individual character. Different mixtures of these elements produced the different natures of things. Empedocles said that those who were born with near equal proportions of the four elements are more intelligent and have the most exact perceptions.
Each sign is associated with one of the classical elements, these can be grouped according to polarity: Fire and Air signs are considered positive or extrovert, masculine signs. The four astrological elements are considered as a direct equivalent to Hippocrates' personality types. A modern approach looks at elements as "the energy substance of experience" and the next table tries to summarize their description through keywords. Classification according to element has gained such importance, that some astrologers start their interpretation of a natal chart, by studying the balance of elements shown by the position of planets and angles; each of the four elements manifests in three modalities: Cardinal and Mutable. As each modality comprehends four signs, these are known as Quadruplicities, they are referred to as crosses because ea
Gautama Buddha known as Siddhārtha Gautama in Sanskrit or Siddhattha Gotama in Pali, Shakyamuni Buddha, or the Buddha, after the title of Buddha, was a monk, sage, philosopher and religious leader on whose teachings Buddhism was founded. He is believed to have lived and taught in the northeastern part of ancient India sometime between the 6th and 4th centuries BCE. Gautama taught a Middle Way between sensual indulgence and the severe asceticism found in the śramaṇa movement common in his region, he taught throughout other regions of eastern India such as Magadha and Kosala. Gautama is the primary figure in Buddhism, he is believed by Buddhists to be an enlightened teacher who attained full Buddhahood and shared his insights to help sentient beings end rebirth and suffering. Accounts of his life and monastic rules are believed by Buddhists to have been summarised after his death and memorized by his followers. Various collections of teachings attributed to him were passed down by oral tradition and first committed to writing about 400 years later.
Scholars are hesitant to make unqualified claims about the historical facts of the Buddha's life. Most people accept that the Buddha lived and founded a monastic order during the Mahajanapada era during the reign of Bimbisara, the ruler of the Magadha empire, died during the early years of the reign of Ajatasatru, the successor of Bimbisara, thus making him a younger contemporary of Mahavira, the Jain tirthankara. While the general sequence of "birth, renunciation, search and liberation, death" is accepted, there is less consensus on the veracity of many details contained in traditional biographies; the times of Gautama's birth and death are uncertain. Most historians in the early 20th century dated his lifetime as c. 563 BCE to 483 BCE. More his death is dated between 411 and 400 BCE, while at a symposium on this question held in 1988, the majority of those who presented definite opinions gave dates within 20 years either side of 400 BCE for the Buddha's death; these alternative chronologies, have not been accepted by all historians.
The evidence of the early texts suggests that Siddhārtha Gautama was born into the Shakya clan, a community, on the periphery, both geographically and culturally, of the eastern Indian subcontinent in the 5th century BCE. One of his usual names was "Sakamuni" or "Sakyamunī", it was either a small republic, or an oligarchy, his father was an elected chieftain, or oligarch. According to the Buddhist tradition, Gautama was born in Lumbini, now in modern-day Nepal, raised in the Shakya capital of Kapilvastu, which may have been either in what is present day Tilaurakot, Nepal or Piprahwa, India. According to Buddhist tradition, he obtained his enlightenment in Bodh Gaya, gave his first sermon in Sarnath, died in Kushinagar. Apart from the Vedic Brahmins, the Buddha's lifetime coincided with the flourishing of influential Śramaṇa schools of thought like Ājīvika, Cārvāka, Ajñana. Brahmajala Sutta records sixty-two such schools of thought. In this context, a śramaṇa refers to one who toils, or exerts themselves.
It was the age of influential thinkers like Mahavira, Pūraṇa Kassapa, Makkhali Gosāla, Ajita Kesakambalī, Pakudha Kaccāyana, Sañjaya Belaṭṭhaputta, as recorded in Samaññaphala Sutta, whose viewpoints the Buddha most must have been acquainted with. Indeed and Moggallāna, two of the foremost disciples of the Buddha, were the foremost disciples of Sañjaya Belaṭṭhaputta, the sceptic. There is philological evidence to suggest that the two masters, Alara Kalama and Uddaka Ramaputta, were indeed historical figures and they most taught Buddha two different forms of meditative techniques. Thus, Buddha was just one of the many śramaṇa philosophers of that time. In an era where holiness of person was judged by their level of asceticism, Buddha was a reformist within the śramaṇa movement, rather than a reactionary against Vedic Brahminism; the life of the Buddha coincided with the Achaemenid conquest of the Indus Valley during the rule of Darius I from about 517/516 BCE. This Achaemenid occupation of the areas of Gandhara and Sindh, to last for about two centuries, was accompanied by the introduction of Achaemenid religions, reformed Mazdaism or early Zoroastrianism, to which Buddhism might have in part reacted.
In particular, the ideas of the Buddha may have consisted of a rejection of the "absolutist" or "perfectionist" ideas contained in these Achaemenid religions. No written records about Gautama were found from his lifetime or from the one or two centuries thereafter. In the middle of the 3rd century BCE, several Edicts of Ashoka mention the Buddha, Ashoka's Rummindei Minor Pillar Edict commemorates the Emperor's pilgrimage to Lumbini as the Buddha's birthplace. Another one of his edicts mentions the titles of several Dhamma texts, establishing the existence of a written Buddhist tradition at least by the time of the Maurya era; these texts may be the precursor of the Pāli Canon. "Sakamuni" in mentioned in the reliefs of Bharhut, dated to circa 100 BCE, in relation with his illumination and the Bodhi tree, with the inscription Bhagavato Sakamunino Bodho. The oldest surviving Buddhist manuscripts are the Gandhāran Buddhist texts, repor
Taurus (Greek for Ταύρος is the second astrological sign in the present zodiac. It spans from 30° to 60° of the zodiac; this sign belongs to the Earth element or triplicity, therefore has a feminine or negative polarity. It has a Fixed modality, quality or quadruplicity, it is a Venus-ruled sign just like Libra. It is the sign where the Moon has its exaltation at 3°; the Sun transits in the sign of Taurus from April 21 until May 21 in western astrology. People born between these dates, depending on which system of astrology they subscribe to, may be called Taureans. Taurus was the first sign of the zodiac established among the ancient Mesopotamians, who called it as "The Great Bull of Heaven", because it was the constellation through which the sun rose on the vernal equinox at that time. Cults centered around sacred bulls began to form in Assyria and Crete during The Age of Taurus, or "The Age of Earth and the Bull". Astronomical Applications Department. Multiyear Computer Interactive Almanac. 2.2.2.
Washington DC: US Naval Observatory. Longitude of Sun, apparent geocentric ecliptic of date, interpolated to find time of crossing 0°, 30°.... Astroroom. "Opposing zodiac signs: themes of the six axes". Astroroom.com. Oxford Dictionaries. "Taurus, Gemini - definitions of Taurus and Gemini in English from the Oxford dictionary". Warburg Institute Iconographic Database
Phra Phutthayotfa Chulalok, born Thongduang and known as Rama I, was the founder of Rattanakosin Kingdom and the first monarch of the reigning Chakri dynasty of Siam. His full title in Thai is Phra Bat Somdet Phra Paramoruracha Mahachakkriborommanat Phra Phutthayotfa Chulalok, he ascended the throne in 1782, after defeating a rebellion which had deposed King Taksin of Thonburi. He was celebrated as the founder of Rattanakosin as the new capital of the reunited kingdom. Rama I was born from great grandson of Kosa Pan, his father served in the royal court in the Kingdom of Ayutthaya, had served King Taksin in wars against the Burmese Konbaung dynasty and helped him in the reunification of Siam. During this time he emerged as Siam's most powerful military leader. Thongduang was the first Somdet Chao Phraya, the highest rank the nobility could attain, equaled to that of royalty. In 1782, he crowned himself as the monarch; the most famous event in his reign was the Burmese-Siamese War of 1785, the last major Burmese assault on Siam.
Like other high-ranking figures of old Siam, Rama I's name changed several times during his lifetime, depending on his respective position, posthumously the way he was referred to change. His name at birth was Thongduang, family names had not yet been introduced in Siam at that time; when Thongduang served as deputy governor of Ratchaburi Province during the rule of King Ekkathat of Ayutthaya, he bore the title of Luang Yokkrabat. After the demise of Ayutthaya, the new king Taksin to whom he served as an important military commander, awarded him successively the titles of Phra Ratcharin Chao Krom Phra Tamruat, Phraya Aphaironnarit, Phraya Yommarat, Phraya Chakri and Chaophraya Chakri. Taksin created him the title of Somdet Chaophraya Maha Kasatsuek, a noble title as high as no Siamese official had born before him, making him quasi-royalty; when he ascended to the throne in 1782, he took the name Ramathibodi, just like the founder of the Ayutthaya Kingdom. His full title was much longer, intended to demonstrate his universal claim to power like of earlier Siamese kings.
After his death, the people referred to him as Phaendin Ton, to his son as Phaendin Klang. Continuing this system his grandson Rama III would have been "the last reign". To avoid this inauspicious title, he ended this practice by donating two Buddha statues that were placed to the sides of the Emerald Buddha at Wat Phra Kaeo and dedicated one each to his father and grandfather, he demanded to refer to his two predecessors using the names of these Buddha statues. The one dedicated to the first Chakri king was named Phra Phutthayotfa Chulalok; this is. His descendant Vajiravudh who had studied in England, realised that most Siamese kings' names were difficult to reproduce and remember for Westerners, he therefore disposed to use for all kings of the Chakri dynasty the name Rama together with the respective ordinal number. So this king is Rama I in Western literature. In 1982, 200 years after his accession, the Thai cabinet decided to award him the epithet Maharat. Titles and styles1737–1758: Nai Thongduang 1758–1768: Luang Yokkrabat of Ratchaburi 1768: Phra Ratcharin 1768–1769: Phraya Aphairanarit 1769–1770: Phraya Yommarat 1770–1778: Chao Phraya Chakri 1778–1782: Somdet Chao Praya Maha Kasatsuek etc. 1782: Somdet Pra Buddha Chao Yu Huo Maha Kasatsuek 1782–1809: Phra Bat Somdet Phra Borommarachathirat Ramathibodi Sisin Borommaha Chakkraphat Rachathibodin etc.
Posthumously renamed by King Rama III as: Phra Bat Somdet Phra Phutthayotfa Chulalok Posthumously renamed by King Mongkut as: Phra Bat Somdet Phra Paramoruracha Mahachakkriborommanat Phra Phutthayotfa Chulalok Posthumously renamed by King Vajiravudh as: Phra Bat Somdet Phra Ramadhibodi Srisindra Maha Chakri Borommanath Phra Phutthayotfa Chulalok Posthumously renamed by King Vajiravudh as: Rama I Posthumously renamed by the Thai cabinet in 1982 as: Phra Bat Somdet Phra Phutthayotfa Chulalok Maharat Thongduang was born in 1737 in the reign of King Boromakot of Ayutthaya. His father was Thongdi, a Mon noble serving the royal court, Phra Akson Sunthonsat. Phra Akson Sunthonsat was a descendant of Kosa Pan, the leader of King Narai's embassy to the French court. His
Thailand the Kingdom of Thailand and known as Siam, is a country at the centre of the Southeast Asian Indochinese peninsula composed of 76 provinces. At 513,120 km2 and over 68 million people, Thailand is the world's 50th largest country by total area and the 21st-most-populous country; the capital and largest city is a special administrative area. Thailand is bordered to the north by Myanmar and Laos, to the east by Laos and Cambodia, to the south by the Gulf of Thailand and Malaysia, to the west by the Andaman Sea and the southern extremity of Myanmar, its maritime boundaries include Vietnam in the Gulf of Thailand to the southeast, Indonesia and India on the Andaman Sea to the southwest. Although nominally a constitutional monarchy and parliamentary democracy, the most recent coup in 2014 established a de facto military dictatorship. Tai peoples migrated from southwestern China to mainland Southeast Asia from the 11th century. Various Indianised kingdoms such as the Mon, the Khmer Empire and Malay states ruled the region, competing with Thai states such as Ngoenyang, the Sukhothai Kingdom, Lan Na and the Ayutthaya Kingdom, which rivaled each other.
European contact began in 1511 with a Portuguese diplomatic mission to Ayutthaya, one of the great powers in the region. Ayutthaya reached its peak during cosmopolitan Narai's reign declining thereafter until being destroyed in 1767 in a war with Burma. Taksin reunified the fragmented territory and established the short-lived Thonburi Kingdom, he was succeeded in 1782 by Buddha Yodfa Chulaloke, the first monarch of the Chakri dynasty and founder of the Rattanakosin Kingdom, which lasted into the early 20th century. Through the 18th and 19th centuries, Siam faced pressure from France and the United Kingdom, including forced concessions of territory, but it remained the only Southeast Asian country to avoid direct Western rule. Following a bloodless revolution in 1932, Siam became a constitutional monarchy and changed its official name to "Thailand". While it joined the Allies in World War I, Thailand was an Axis satellite in World War II. In the late 1950s, a military coup revived the monarchy's influential role in politics.
Thailand became a major ally of the United States and played a key anti-communist role in the region. Apart from a brief period of parliamentary democracy in the mid-1970s, Thailand has periodically alternated between democracy and military rule. In the 21st century, Thailand endured a political crisis that culminated in two coups and the establishment of its current and 20th constitution by the military junta. Thailand is a unitary parliamentary constitutional monarchy under a military junta. Thailand is a founding member of Association of Southeast Asian Nations and remains a major ally of the US. Despite its comparatively sporadic changes in leadership, it is considered a regional power in Southeast Asia and a middle power in global affairs. With a high level of human development, the second largest economy in Southeast Asia, the 20th largest by PPP, Thailand is classified as a newly industrialized economy. Thailand the Kingdom of Thailand known as Siam, is a country at the centre of the Indochinese peninsula in Southeast Asia.
The country has always been called Mueang Thai by its citizens. By outsiders prior to 1949, it was known by the exonym Siam; the word Siam may have originated from Pali or Sanskrit श्याम or Mon ရာမည. The names Shan and A-hom seem to be variants of the same word; the word Śyâma is not its origin, but a learned and artificial distortion. Another theory is the name derives from Chinese: "Ayutthaya emerged as a dominant centre in the late fourteenth century; the Chinese called this region Xian, which the Portuguese converted into Siam." A further possibility is that Mon-speaking peoples migrating south called themselves'syem' as do the autochthonous Mon-Khmer-speaking inhabitants of the Malay Peninsula. The signature of King Mongkut reads SPPM Mongkut Rex Siamensium, giving the name "Siam" official status until 24 June 1939 when it was changed to Thailand. Thailand was renamed to Siam from 1946 to 1948. According to George Cœdès, the word Thai means "free man" in the Thai language, "differentiating the Thai from the natives encompassed in Thai society as serfs".
A famous Thai scholar argued that Thai means "people" or "human being", since his investigation shows that in some rural areas the word "Thai" was used instead of the usual Thai word "khon" for people. According to Michel Ferlus, the ethnonyms Thai/Tai would have evolved from the etymon *kri:'human being' through the following chain: *kəri: > *kəli: > *kədi:/*kədaj > *di:/*daj > *dajA > tʰajA2 or > tajA2. Michel Ferlus' work is based on some simple rules of phonetic change observable in the Sinosphere and studied for t
Aquarius is the eleventh astrological sign in the Zodiac, originating from the constellation Aquarius. Under the tropical zodiac, the sun is in Aquarius between about January 21 and about February 20, while under the sidereal Zodiac, the sun is in Aquarius from February 15 to March 14, depending on the leap year; the water carrier represented by the zodiacal constellation Aquarius is Ganymede, a beautiful Phrygian youth. Ganymede was the son of king of Troy. While tending to his father's flocks on Mount Ida, Ganymede was spotted by Zeus; the king of gods fell in love with him and flew down to the mountain in the form of a large bird, whisking Ganymede away to the heavens. Since, the boy has served as cupbearer to the gods. Ovid has Orpheus sing the tale. Aquarius is a winter constellation in the northern hemisphere, found near Cetus, it is notable as the radiant for four meteor showers, the largest of, the Delta Aquarid meteor shower in late July and early August. "Aquarius". Oxford Dictionaries.
N.d. Retrieved December 23, 2018. "The Aquarius Myth – The Story Behind the Constellation Aquarius". Gods-and-monsters.com. January 14, 2015. Retrieved February 6, 2015. Astronomical Applications Department. Multiyear Computer Interactive Almanac. 2.2.2. Washington DC: US Naval Observatory. Longitude of Sun, apparent geocentric ecliptic of date, interpolated to find time of crossing 0°, 30°.... "Pisces". Oxford Dictionaries. N.d. Retrieved December 23, 2018. Warburg Institute Iconographic Database
Chinese New Year
Chinese New Year is the Chinese festival that celebrates the beginning of a new year on the traditional Chinese calendar. The festival is referred to as the Spring Festival in mainland China, is one of several Lunar New Years in Asia. Observances traditionally take place from the evening preceding the first day of the year to the Lantern Festival, held on the 15th day of the year; the first day of Chinese New Year begins on the new moon that appears between 21 January and 20 February. In 2019, the first day of the Chinese New Year was on Tuesday, 5 February, initiating the Year of the Pig. Chinese New Year is a major holiday in Greater China and has influenced lunar new year celebrations of China's neighbouring cultures, including the Korean New Year, the Tết of Vietnam, the Losar of Tibet, it is celebrated worldwide in regions and countries with significant Overseas Chinese populations, including Singapore, Malaysia, Thailand, the Philippines, Mauritius, as well as many in North America and Europe.
Chinese New Year is associated with several customs. The festival was traditionally a time to honour deities as well as ancestors. Within China, regional customs and traditions concerning the celebration of the New Year vary and the evening preceding Chinese New Year's Day is regarded as an occasion for Chinese families to gather for the annual reunion dinner, it is traditional for every family to clean their house, in order to sweep away any ill-fortune and to make way for incoming good luck. Another custom is the decoration of doors with red paper-cuts and couplets. Popular themes among these paper-cuts and couplets include that of good fortune or happiness and longevity. Other activities include giving money in red paper envelopes. For the northern regions of China, dumplings are featured prominently in meals celebrating the festival; this is folklore said that there will come out like a beast called ‘Nian’ during the Spring Festival. The beast is seen once a year; this day is called ‘New Year’.
And the day before New Year is called ‘New Year Eve’. According to the legend, the beast was ferocious as it went to the house to eat people in the midnight. In order to avoid the beast, Yanhuang reunited the people together and sat around to resist the beast; as the beast appear once a year, Yanhuang discovered that the beast was afraid of red and loud noise. Therefore every household posted red couplet at the door, ignited a bonfire outside the home, fired the firecrackers; when the beast saw those red things outside every household, they would drive away. There is a say that the beast is ‘Xi’ rather than ‘Nian’; the Spring Festival included New Year’s Eve and New Year. ‘Xi’ is a kind of faint monster, ‘Nian’ is not related to the animal beasts in terms of meaning, it is more like a mature harvest. There is no record of the beast in the ancient texts, it is only folklore in China; the word "Nian" is composed of the words "he" and "Qian". It means that the grain is rich and the harvest is good; the farmers review the harvest at the end of the year and are full of expectations for the coming year.
According to Chinese historical documents, since the beginning of the era, people have celebrated the harvest in the New Year and welcomed the new folk customs. They became an established traditional festival. “Spring Festival.” While Spring Festival has since become the official name of Chinese New Year, the Chinese outside mainland China still prefer calling it Lunar Year. “Chinese New Year” is a popular and convenient translation for people of non-Chinese cultural backgrounds. Along with the Han Chinese in and outside China, as many as 29 of the 55 ethnic minority groups in China celebrate Chinese New Year. Six countries like Korea, Singapore and Indonesia celebrate it as their official festival; the lunisolar Chinese calendar determines the date of Lunar New Year. The calendar is used in countries that have been influenced by, or have relations with, China – such as Korea and Vietnam, though the date celebrated may differ by one day or one moon cycle due to using a meridian based on a different capital city in a different time zone or different placements of intercalary months.
Chinese calendar defines the lunar month with winter solstice as the 11th month, which means that Chinese New Year falls on the second new moon after the winter solstice. In more than 96% of the years, the Chinese New Year's Day is the closest new moon to lichun on 4 or 5 February, the first new moon after Dahan. In the Gregorian calendar, the Lunar New Year begins at the new moon that falls between 21 January and 20 February; the Gregorian Calendar dates for Chinese New Year from 1912 to 2101 are below, along with the year's presiding animal zodiac and its Stem-branch. The traditional Chinese calendar follows a Metonic cycle, a system used by the modern Jewish Calendar, returns to the same date in Gregorian calendar roughly; the names of the Earthly Branches have no English counterparts and are not the Chinese translations of the animals. Alongside the 12-year cycle of the animal zodiac there is a 10-year cycle of heavenly stems; each of the ten heavenly stems is associated with one of the five elements of Chinese astrology, namely: Wood, Earth and Water.
The elements are rotated every two years. The elements are thus distinguished: Yin Wood, Yang Fire, Yin Fire, etc.. These produce a combined cycle that repeat