I came to know from the letter (given below) in Dinamalar dated
that Diploma in Astrology offered in Tamil, English and Hindi
had been dropped at the insistence of the government. (Karunanidhi).
I checked with the University website and found it removed.
This subject has been there for many years
and was very popular with people.
In fact I was told that there are more students in this subject
than in others offered through distance education.
They had a very strong team of teachers
who taught astrology scientifically.
This move to drop must have taken place only recently
after our all-knowledgeable Chief minister changed the Tamil New year.
Even in the last season, (it is offered twice a year in January and June)
I remember seeing the advertisement in the newspaper.
This move by the Chief minister
not only shows his pernicious intentions to slap anything of Hinduism,
but also his lack of grasp of Tamil texts
which he boasts of having learnt or championing for.
Astrology as “kala- ganitham”
(the measurement / calculation of Time)
was popular in Tamil nadu.
Kaniyan Poonkundranaar, the poet who wrote ‘Yaadum vurE’
was an astrologer.
Kaniyan means astrologer.
Song 229 of Puranaanuru is full of astrological information
that indicated an impending danger to the king.
The poet Koodalur kizhar relates the fall of a meteor at around
in the inauspicious direction of South, in the month of panguni
with Uthram shining above head,
Mrigashirsgha setting and Moola rising –
to the death of the king.
He says that they were all praying that their king should not fall ill ( causing death),
implying that there was none who could kill him in combat.
But the king died suddenly making the astrological indication true.
The king was Cheran Yaanai kat Chei Mandharam Cheral Irumborai.
Puranaanuru 24-5 also says that the meteor-fall in the night of panguni is “Raja peedai”.
The words ‘paasi’ and ‘udeesi’ used in the poem are sankritised Tamil words
for east and west – Prachee and Udeechi.
The ‘muda-p-panai’ mentioned in the poem is Anusham
which has 6 stars in the shape of palm tree (panai maram)
‘Azhal kuttam’ is krittika which has “azhal’ (agni) as its devatha.
Silappadhikaram also says “azhal sEr kuttatthu ashtami” –
the ashtami falling on the day of star krittika.(134)
Thol kaapiyam Pura-th-thinai sutra says
astrological factors were considered for predicting events. (Sutra 30 and 36)
More than anything else,
Thirukkural also accepts astrology as a “yeN”
in yennum yezhutthum
The second kural in Kalvi justifies –yeN – ganitham
and in addition to it yezhutthu as
Sarvendriyanaam nayanam pradhanam –
The eye is the fore most of all parts of the body.
and Astrology is considered as the Eye of Veda purusha.
There are verses to this effect in sastras.
Vedas can not be understood without the Vedangas
(shadangas said as ‘sadankavigal’ in Tamil texts)
And among Vedangas, Astrology or Jyothisha alone was
Ganitha sastra (yeN)
Other 5 are about yezhutthu.
Thus Thiruvalluvar has only repeated these in his kural as the eyes.
We can go on quoting many verses in support of how Jyothisha was integral
in Tamil’s life.
The best way ever formulated by man to record time is by Astrology only.
To shut it out and make it unreachable by people makes me say that
Karunanidhi stands as the best example for the kurals in
“kodungOnmai” and “veru vandha seiyaamai”.
I don’t expect him to change,
because this yuga of Kali is dependent on people like him
to further its yuga dharma.
I only feel astonished
how true it is that
in a democracy people get what they deserve!!