The word Panchanga is derived from two words PANCH & ANGA.
Pancha means five and Anga means limbs.
The five limbs are 1) Tithi 2) Vaara 3) Nakshatra 4) Yoga and 5) Karana.
The study of these five items is very much essential for ascertaining an auspicious moment for starting any important work. This is called the Muhurta. The book indicating these five limbs is called PANCHANGA.
A lunar month will have 15 tithis and starts from the end of one Amavasya (New Moon day) till the next Amavasya. The 15 tithis are as follows.
SUKLA PAKSHA (Bright half) KRISHNA PAKSHA (Dark half)
1. Pratipada 1. Pratipada
2. Dwitiya 2. Dwitiya
3. Triteeya 3. Triteeya
4. Chaturdi/Chavithi 4. Chaturdi/Chavithi
5. Panchami 5. Panchami
6. Shashti 6. Shashti
7. Saptami 7. Saptami
8. Ashtami 8. Ashtami
9. Navami 9. Navami
10. Dasami 10. Dasami
11. Ekadasi 11. Ekadasi
12. Dwadasi 12. Dwadasi
13. Trayodasi 13. Trayodasi
14. Chaturdasi 14. Chaturdasi
15. Poornima 15. Amavasya
On the day of amavasya the longitude of Moon and Sun are equal. The increase of the the difference of their longitude gives rise to Tithi. For every 12 degrees of difference of longitude of Moon and longitude of Sun one tithi changes. On the day of Poornima the difference between the longitudes of Moon and Sun will be 180 degrees. The mathematical formula for deriving the tithi is as follows.
(long. Of Moon – long. Of Sun ) / 12 = Q
Q represents the tithi. Thus the tithi is having an evidence in the Zodiac where as the Date is not having any evidence.
As per Hindu system there are seven days. They are Sunday, Monday, Tuesday, Wednesday, Thursday, Friday and Saturday. A day is reckoned from one Sun rise to next Sun rise. Each day is having 24 Horas. Each Hora is having a lord. The order of the horas is as follows.
Sani, Guru, Kuja,
Ravi, Shukra, Budha, Chandra.
The day is named after the Lord of Hora which is running at the time of Sun rise. Suppose the hora running at the time of Sun rise is Moon hora, the day is named as Monday. Hence on Monday the hora at the time of Sun rise is Moon hora and again the 22nd hora will be Moon hora. The 23rd hora will be Sani hora, 24th hora will be Guru hora and the 25th hora, i.e., the first hora of the next day will be Kuja hora. Hence the next day will be Tuesday.
NAKSHATRA: There are 27 nakshatras. They are
Aswini Makha Moola
Bharani Purava Phalguni Purvashadha
Krittika Uttara Phalguni Uttarashadha
Rohini Hasta Sravanam
Mrigasira Chitra Dhanishta
Arudra Swati Satabhisham
Punarvasu Visakha Purvabhadra
Pushyami Anuradha Uttarabhadra
Aslesha Jyeshta Revati
Each Nakshatra is further divided into 4 Padas. The extent of each Nakshatra is 13 degrees 20 minutes and the extent of each Nakshatra Pada is 3 degrees 20 minutes.
The Nakshatra on which a particular planet is transiting can be known. We are particular about the Nakshatra on which Moon is transiting on the day of birth or any day, as the day is said to be in that Nakshatra. The mathematical formula for knowing the nakshatra is as follows.
Longitude of Moon / 130 20’ = Q
Q represents the Nakshatra.
YOGA: There are 27 yogas. They are
1. Vishkumbha 10. Ganda 19. Parigha
2. Preeti 11. Vruddhi 20. Shiva
3. Aayushman 12. Dhruva 21. Siddha
4. Sawbhagya 13. Vyaaghata 22. Saadhya
5. Sobhana 14. Harshana 23. Shubha
6. Atiganda 15. Vajra 24. Shukla
7. Sukarma 16. Siddhi 25. Brahma
8. Dhruti 17. Vyateepatha 26. Indra
9. Shoola 18. Vareeyan 27. Vaidhruti
The extent of each Yoga is 130 20’. Yoga means combination. The Yoga is formed by the combination of longitudes of Sun and Moon. The mathematical formula for arriving at the Yoga is as follows.
(Long of Sun + Long of Moon) / 130 20’ = Q
Q represents the Yoga.
Karana is half of tithi. Hence the extent of each Karana is 6 degrees. There are 11 karanas. They are
1. Bava 7. Vishti
2. Baalava 8. Shakuni
3. Kowlava 9. Chatushpada
4. Taitula 10. Naaga
5. Garaja 11. Kimstughna
From Bava to Vishti, the Karanas are called Chara Karanas. From Shakuni to Kimstughna, the karanas are called Sthira karanas. Hence there are 7 Chara karanas and 4 Sthira karanas. The mathematical formula for arriving at the Karana on a particular day is as follows.
(Long of Moon – Long of Sun)/ 6 = Q
Q represents Karana.
INFORMATION GIVEN IN PANCHANGA:
INFORMATION REGARDING TIME:
The Panchanga is written for a year starting from Chitra Suddha Padyami to Phalguna Bahula Amavasya. In the beginning of the Panchanga, the name of the Saka, Ayana, Ritu are mentioned.
Tithi, Vaara, Nakshatra, Yoga, Karana are given with their ending times. For convenience sake the English dates are also given. The timings of Sun rise and Sun set are given. The time periods of Varjyam, Durmuhurtha, Rahu kaalam, Yamagandam and Amruta Kaalam are also given.
The periods of eclipses, Guru Sukra Moudhyami (combustion of Venus & Jupiter) periods are given. The period of Kattera, i.e., the period when Sun is transiting in the last quarter of Bharani, 4 quarters of Krittika and first quarter of Rohini, is given.
INFORMATION REGARDING CASTING OF HOROSCOPE:
For casting of horoscope, the ending periods of different ascendants are given. In certain Panchangas, the beginning times of ascendants are given. As these ascendants are calculated to a particular Place, the table of correction for different places is given. The daily transiting particulars of different planets are shown. The longitudes of planets on different dates are also mentioned.
The dasa periods of different planets and antardasa periods of different planets in a particular dasa are given. The table of Pushkaramsas in different signs is also given.
All these particulars are very much essential for casting a horoscope.
OTHER MISC. INFORMATION:
Muhurtas: The auspicious muhurtas in the year for different ceremonies are given. Gowry Panchanga, auspicious yogas like Amrita Siddi yoga, inauspicious yogas like Dagdha yogas are mentioned.
Nakshatras: The characteristics of different nakshatras like, the starting letters, yoni, gana, naadi etc are mentioned. The table useful for marriage make making of stars of boy and girl are mentioned.
Results of transiting planets: The results of transiting planets for different janma Raasis are given. The results of Saadhe Saathi, Arthashtama shani, Ashtama Sani, Moorthy of transiting planets in different sings are mentioned.
Vaastu: The general principle of Vaastu and the qualities of Vaastu Purusha are given.
Festivals: A list of different festivals with dates is given.
Omens & Dreams: The results of different omens and dreams are listed out with proper propitiation for nullifying the adverse effects.
Propitiation: In Panchangas, the adverse periods for different janma rasis are given with the propitiations to be done. If birth takes place in certain nakshatras, Saanti is to be performed. The particulars of such Nakshatras with the Saanti procedures are mentioned.
The sthotras for different Gods are given. The stotras for Nava grahas are given.
Mundane astrology: The Varsha Lagna & Jagar lagna charts are given for the country.
The 9 leaders (Nava Nayakas) for the year are mentioned with the results.
The Sankranthi purusha of the year with results are given.
The particulars of rain fall, prices of commodities, peace in the country, calamities that may happen in the country are mentioned.
Differences in Panchangas: There are different methods of calculations in writing Panchangas. As a result of this there is lack of consistency in panchangas. To solve this problem, Government of India formed a committee called “Calendar Reform committee” in 1952 and as per their advice a centre called “Positional Astronomy Centre” was formed in
. This centre is publishing Panchanga in different Indian regional languages, taking 22nd March 285 as ZERO AYANAMSA YEAR. The calculations of these Panchangas are based on DRUK SIDDHANTAM. Calcutta
The Panchanga in English is called Ephemeris. In this ephemeris, the longitudes of planets on different date are given. All the astronomical particulars for casting of horoscope are given. Rafel, Krishnamurty, Pandit Gangadhar Prasad, Lahari ephemeris are some of the main ephemeris books. The Lahari ephemeris mostly accepted one.
The Panchanga is called Almanac. Like this there is lot of information given in the Panchanga which is very much useful for an individual in day to day life. Hence Panchanga is called a torch light in hand, “KARA DEEPIKA”.