Sunday, January 24, 2016

Drizzles in Chennai – good Garbottam.

For the past few days, Chennai and its suburbs experienced a very pleasant climate of cool breeze and overcast sky for most part of the day with a few drizzles. The breeze, overcast sky that hides the sun and mild drizzle constitute 3 out of 5 important features of a good Garbottam. The effect will be seen as good rainfall on the 195th day. (The other 2 features are lightning and low-key thunder)

Good Garbottam on Arudra (22nd January 2016).

In the past few days (20th, 22nd and 23rd) my place of observation saw 3 features namely breeze, clouds and drizzle. Therefore the corresponding 195th days namely 30th July, 1st August and 2nd August 2016 must see good rainfall in my place of observation.

On these days all these 3 features were noticed in many parts of Chennai. Wherever the drizzle was observed, the same as above holds good as per this theory.

If it had rained heavily in a place with the same Garbottam features, the opposite will happen on the 195th day. That is, there will be less rainfall in those places on those days.

In the 3 days mentioned above, drizzles were experienced in some parts of Chennai while fairly heavy rainfall (downpour) was reported in some other parts of Chennai. To check the veracity of this clause on rainfall, let people (observers) take a note on the amount of rainfall in these days.
Another idea known from this clause is that though there may be rain clouds gathered over a vast area, it may not rain at all places or uniformly. The reason is traced to the Garbottam features present in a place.

On 22nd January, the moon was in Arudra, the star that must be watched every month until Vaikasi for good Garbottam features. On this day the Garbottam features were very good with a mild drizzle in the afternoon in my place of observation. The sun was in the hiding for most part of the day.

(22-1-2016) Noon

This is the month of Thai and if Arudra day has good Garbottam features, it will rain for 6 days in the corresponding days starting from the 195th day. The additional Garbottam feature is the foggy morning on this day. It must be foggy in Thai but not foggy in Margazhi for good Garbottam.

As per the Arudra Garbottam, it must rain from 1st August to 6th August 2016. But this must be further supported by the upcoming days’ Garbottam as the 4th day of Garbottam having relevance for the period between 2nd August and 16th August was not encouraging. The Arudra Garbottam of 22nd January is the further fine-tuning mechanism of that fortnight.

Some of the beautiful features of the sky captured on 20th January when Rohini was transited by Moon were already written here.

The corresponding rainfall dates are 29th and 30th July 2016.

31st July will be a dry day or less rainfall day as the Garbottam features on 21st January were less or weak. The Sun was bare and the sky, cloudless in my place of observation on 21st January 2016.


22nd January (Arudra day) had Sun hidden by clouds for most part of the day time. Drizzles were also felt.
Sun hidden and clouds with glossy edges on 22-1-2016

The Garbottam on 23rd January was also good in my place of observation with a mild drizzle for a few minutes in late afternoon. It will have a good impact on rainfall on 2nd August 2016.


The Garbottam continued to be good today also (24th January) till the 2 PM. Though there was no drizzle, the sky was overcast and sun was hidden by dark clouds often.

(24-1-26) 2 PM

(24-1-26) – sun visible as a white disc through clouds after 2 PM

The extent of rainfall.

The extent of rainfall and amount of rainfall are mentioned by Varahamihira based on Garbottam features. If all the five features are present on a day in a place, it would give rainfall to an extent of 100 yojanas. The term Yojana has been interpreted differently by different schools of thought. I prefer to take the number that has a proven comparison in today’s world.

In Valmiki Ramayana, Hanuman was said to have crossed the sea that stretched for 100 Yojanas. The Nala- setu was built for a stretch of 100 Yojanas linking India and Srilanka. This distance as we see today is 30 km. If 100 Yojanas mean 30 km, 1 Yojana will be 300 mt. This is approximately the distance at which sound travels. Why I am comparing this with speed of sound is because 1 Yojana is equal to 1 Kooppidu distance. Kooppidu (கூப்பிடு) means the distance at which one’s call travels. 

The measurement system for Yojana = Kooppidu conversion is as follows:

 24 amgula = 1 muzham (hasta)

4 muzham = dhanus

2 dhanus = 1 danda

50 danda = 1 koopidu

4 kooppidu = 1 yojana.

Or the distance at which a call can be heard.

This conversion table looks relevant when we check the length of Setu bund which is 100 Yojanas according to Valmiki and 30 km at present.

If we take the actual distance travelled by sound, 100 Yojana is somewhere between 30 to 34 km.
According to Varahamihira, if a day has all the 5 Garbottam features, there will be rainfall to the extent of 100 Yojanas which can be assumed as 30 to 34 km around that place where the features were observed.

If one feature is less, rainfall will be half of that extent, which is around 15 to 17 km.

If 2 features are less, this must be halved further. That means rainfall will be felt around 8 km in the place of observation.

The amount of rainfall.

The amount of rainfall is judged on the basis of Garbottam features. Varahamihira uses the term ‘Drona’ and ‘Adhaka’ to indicate the amount of rainfall. An adhaka is defined as ‘the quantity of rainfall which fills to the brim of the vessel 20 inches in diameter and 20 inches deep’, according to Dr BV Raman. Four such Adhakas make one Drona.

If Garbottam has all 5 features, the rainfall on the 195th day will be 1 Drona (4 adhakas). It will fall on an area of 100 Yojanas. For the absence of each feature, the rainfall will be less to that extent.

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