June 12th, 2005


al-biruni's manzils

Al-Biruni & Arabic Astrology

[In al Biruni’s corpus of work, writes Nasr] The moon acts as the intermediary [‘deputy’/Na’ib] between all the heavens and the terrestrial domain so that the lunar mansions synthesise in themselves all the aspects of the intellect manifest in the planetary spheres and the archetypal world of the [celestial] signs. The numerical symbolism involved clarifies their relations. The number of the mansions of the moon, which is 28, is equal to 7+6+5+4+3+2+1 i.e. the sum of the number of planets. Moreover the 28 mansions are the macrocosmic counterparts of the 28 letters of the alphabet which form the language of the Divine Word and may be considered as the form or expression of the Divine Breath (nafas al-rahman) itself. The significance of the lunar mansions is [also] fundamental to Islamic astrology, particularly as it is related to the science of Divine names in certain aspects of Sufism ... As the ‘cosmic memory' ... the moon… in its 28 mansions synthesises the whole of the Cosmos and therefore becomes the symbol of the Universal Man who is himself the archetype of the universe. In is in this perspective that certain Sufis have identified the Moon with the Prophet [=Na’ib] Mohammad.Shipman’s Guide: Early Card-Packs and the Arcana, Diane O’Donovan

using the Kalachakra Calendar introduced me to the nakshatras & lunar mansions. primarily focused on nakshatra attributes completely ignoring constellations. difficulty in getting current list for astroschyzy involves (i thought at the time) identifying stars for each nakshatra. simple approach was checking Anne Wright's Fixed Stars & Dr. S. Balakrishna's Names of Stars from the Period of Vedas. both reference Star Names: Their Lore and Meaning by Richard Hinckley Allen who listed each star with their european, arabic, hindu, & chinese names.

remembered 28-letter alphabet ABJAD & finally decided on Al-Biruni's manzils. fomalhaut another problem — not mentioned on (m)any lunar mansion lists i've checked so i added it. also: NI {28} related to Bonorum & appear in the Seventh Enochian Key: The East Is A House Of Virgins Singing Praises Among The Flames Of First Glory: Wherein The Lord Hath Opened His Mouth, And They Are Become 28 Living Dwellings In Whom The Strength Of Men Rejoices. etc.

Al-Briruni: Al-Biruni @ wikipedia | Abu Arrayhan Muhammad ibn Ahmad al-Biruni | Al-Biruni | Al-Biruni & Arabic Astrology | Lunar Mansion | The Lunar Mansions

1. Al-Sharatain (SHERATAN 04TA02 & MESARTHIM 03TA15 : The Two Sign; Cornua Arietis, Horns of the Ram).
2. Al-Butain (BOTEIN 20TA55 : The Belly; Venter Arietis, The Belly of the Ram).
3. Al-Thurayya (ALCYONE 00GE04 : The Many Little Ones (Pleiades); Caput Tauri, The Head of the Bull).
4. Al-Dabaran (ALDEBARAN 09GE51 & PRIMA HYADUM 05GE52 : The Follower; Cor Tauri, The Heart of the Bull).
5. Al-Haq'ah (MEISSA 23GE47 : A White Spot; Caput Canis Validi, The Head of the Strong Dog).
6. Al-Han'ah (ALHENA 09CN10 : Brand/Mark on a Camel; Sidus Parvum Lucis Magnae, The Small, Bright Star).
7. Al-Dhira (CASTOR 20CN19 & POLLUX 23CN17 : The Paw, or Forearm; Bracchium, The Arm).
8. Al-Nathra (PRAESAEPE 07LE20, ASELLUS AUSTRALIS 08LE43 & ASELLUS BOREALIS 07LE32 : Gap in the Lion's Fur; Nebulosa).
9. Al-Tarf (AL TARF 04LE15 : Glance of the Lion's Eye; Oculus Leonis, Eye of the Lion).
10. Al-Jabhah (REGULUS 29LE54 : Forehead of the Lion; Frons Leonis, Face of the Lion).
11. Al-Zubrah (ZOSMA 11VI23 & COXA 13VI30 : Lion's Mane; Capillus Leonis, Fur of the Lion).
12. Al-Sarfah (DENEBOLA 21VI41 : Changer of the Weather; Cauda Leonis, The Tail of the Lion).
13. Al-Awwa (ZAVIJAVA 27VI14, VINDEMIATRIX 09LI56 & ZANIAH 04LI54 : Barker in the Kennel; Canis, The Dog).
14. Alsimak Al’a’zal (SPICA 23LI55 : The Lofty & Unarmed; Spica, Ear of Corn).
15. Al-Ghafr (SYRMA 03SC53 : The Covering; Cooperta).
16. Al-Zubana (ZUBENELGENUBI (S) 15SC10 & ZUBENESHAMALI (N) 19SC27 : Scorpion's Claws; Cornua Scorpionis).
17. Iklil Al-Jabhah (ACRAB (Graffias) 03SG16 : Crown of the Forehead; Corona Super Caput).
18. Al-Kalb (ANTARES 09SG51 : Scorpion's Heart; Cor Scorpionis).
19. Al-Shaulah (SHAULA 24SG40 & LESATH 24SG06 : Sting of the Scorpion; Cauda Scorpionis).
20. Al Na'am (NUNKI 12CP28 & ASCELLA 13CP43 : Returning Ostriches; Trabs, Beam or Rafter).
21. Al-Baldah (ALBADAH 16CP15 : The Empty District; Desertum, The Desert).
22. Al Sa'd al Dhabih (ALGEDI 03AQ51 : Lucky One of the Slaughterers; Pastor et Aries, Shepherd & Ram).
23. Al Sa'd al Bula' (ALBALI 11AQ48 : Good Fortune of the Swallower; Glutiens).
24. Sa'd as-Su'ud (SADALSUUD 23AQ28 : Luckiest of the Lucky; Sidus Fortunae, Star of Good Fortune).
25. Sa'd al-Akhbiyah (FOMALHAUT 03PIS56 & SADALACHBIA 06PI47 : Lucky Star of Hidden Things; Papilio, The Butterfly).
26. Al Fargh al Awwal (MARKAB 23PI34 & SCHEAT 29PI27 : Fore-spout of the Water-bucket; Hauriens Primus).
27. Al Fargh al-Thani (ALGENIB 09AR14 : Lower Spout of the Water-bucket; Hauriens Secundus).
28. Al-Batn al-Hut (MIRACH 00TA29 : Belly of the Fish; Piscis).

collection of links, notes & stuff so i can sort the rest. first, frivolouscake recently posted link to excellent card site. reminded me of another site i couldn't recall at the time. found World of Playing Cards again searching lunar mansions (make sure to check out Origin of the Joker & Concise History of Playing-cards).

Archangel Gabriel

Esoteric Buddhism and Astrology. The zodiac appears to have originated in ancient Egypt on the basis of Babylonian astrology and was then adopted and systematised by the Greeks. It spread to India as a part of the dissemination of Hellenistic knowledge that took place in the centuries following Alexander the Great's conquest of the east after 334 B.C. For a time, the Indians used Greek names for the constellations of the zodiac ... The 28 constellations may have originated in China in the Zhou dynasty (1100-221 BC) and subsequently found their way to India, where they were reduced to 27 and imbued with superstitious content. Another theory is that the Chinese and Indian constellations developed independently of each other, with the Indian being older. In China, the 28-day Chinese version gradually displaced the Indian one for astrological purposes. The Chinese divided the heavens into 28 constellations located along the Equator and the ecliptic, each named after a star in the vicinity. In the course of a month, the moon would progress through one constellation each day. The 28 constellations were divided into four groups: the seven stars of the east, the seven stars of the north, the seven stars of the west, and the seven stars of the south. This effectively divided the month into four lots of seven days.

History of Astrology. The study of astrology and the belief in it, as part of astronomy, is found in a developed form among the ancient Babylonians; and directly or indirectly through the Babylonians, it spread to other nations. It came to Greece about the middle of the 4th century B.C., and reached Rome before the opening of the Christian era. In India and China, astronomy and astrology are largely reflections of Greek theories and speculations; and similarly with the introduction of Greek culture into Egypt, both astronomy and astrology were actively cultivated in the region of the Nile during the Hellenistic and Roman periods. Astrology was further developed by the Arabs from the 7th to the 13th century, and in the Europe of the 14th and 15th centuries astrologers were dominating influences at court.

Babylonian and Indian Astronomy: Early Connections. Did the Indian and Babylonian astronomy evolve in isolation, was there mutual influence, or was one dependent on the other? Scholars have debated these questions for more than two centuries, and opinion has swung one way or the other with time. The similarities between the two systems that have been investigated are: the use of 30 divisions of the lunar month; the 360 divisions of the civil year; the length of the year; and the solar zodiac. Some have wondered if the Babylonian planetary tables might have played a role in the theories of the siddhantas. I shall in this essay go over the essentials of the early Indian and Babylonian astronomy and summarize the latest views on the relationship between them. I shall show that the key ideas found in the Babylonian astronomy of 700 BC are already present in the Vedic texts, which even by the most conservative reckoning are centuries older than this period. I shall also show that the solar zodiac (rashis) was used in Vedic India and I shall present a plausible derivation of the symbols of the solar zodiac from the deities of the lunar segments. This does not mean that the Babylonian astronomy and astrology is derived from the Indian tradition. If at all there was borrowing, that was restricted to the most general ideas only. The nature of Indian and Babylonian astronomical methods is quite different. I propose that it is most likely that Babylonian astronomy emerged independently.

ZODIAC @ 1911 Encyclopedia. Lunar Zodiac ~ The synodical revolution of the moon laid down the lines of the solar, its sidereal revolution those of ,the lunar zodiac. The first was a circlet of full moons ; the second marked the diurnal stages of the lunar progress round the sky, from and back again to any selected star. The moon was the earliest measurer both of time and space; but its services can scarcely have been rendered available until stellar milestones were established at suitable points along its path. Such - were the Hindu nakshatras, a word originally signifying stars in ~eneral, but appropriated to designate certain small stellar groups marking the divisions of the lunar track. They exhibit in an exaggerated form the irregularities of distribution visible in our zodiacal constellations, and present the further anomaly of being frequently reckoned as twenty-eight in number, while the ecliptical arcs they characterize are invariably twenty-seven. Now, since the moon revolves round the earth in 273/4 days, hesitation between the two full numbers might easily arise; yet the real explanation of the difficulty appears to be different. The superfluous asterism, named Abhijit, included the bright star a Lyrae, under whose influence the gods had vanquished the Asuras. Its invocation with the other nakshatras, remoteness from the ecliptic notwithstanding, was thus due (according to Max Mullers plausible conjecture)I to its being regarded as of especially good omen. Acquaintance with foreign systems of twenty-eight lunar divisions tended doubtless to fix its position, which remained, nevertheless, always equivocal.1 Alternately admitted into or rejected from the series, it was finally, some six or seven centuries ago, eliminated by the effects of precession in reversing the order of culmination of its limiting stars. The notion of a twenty-seven-fold division of the zodiac was deeply rooted in Hindu tradition. The number and the name were in early times almost synonymous. Thus a nakshatra denoted a necklace of twenty-seven pearls;1 and the fundamental equality of the parts was figured in an ancient legend, by the compulsion laid upon King Soma (the Moon) to share his time impartially between all his wives, the twenty-seven daughters of Prajpati. Everything points to a native origin for the system of nakshatras.

As it is said that Tîstar is the chieftain of the east, Satavês the chieftain of the west, Vanand the chieftain of the south, and Haptôk-rîng the chieftain of the north. — The Bundahis-Bahman Yast, And Shâyast Lâ-Shâyast

Angels on cover of Persian poetry bookThe Ascension of Hastorang (PDF, Chaosium Digest Volume 34, Number 10 {1}{2}{3}{4}). Engraved on the wall, behind the fire is a thousand year old, but well preserved mural. Those who know astronomy see that it depicts constellations of the southern hemisphere. One of which is more prominent, and within that, one star stands out from the rest - Fomalhaut in The Southern Fish. Beneath the engraving, a throng of people with arms raised high in prayer surround a mountain, on top of which three figures appear to offer gifts to a pillar of flame. Etched below the mural is another engraving of the F'tag'uan tribe. It measures 20 inches by 16 inches. If there is one thing interesting about the F'tag'uan way of writing it is this - it bares a striking similarity to Assyrian Cuneiform. Why? Who knows. Maybe the ancient F'tag'uans were originally from Assyria ... It reads, when translated: From a land across uncharted waters, shall come the faithful. When the stars are right the servitor of lightning will command the doorway to be opened, marking the way to enlightenment. Upon that holy time, the sky will boil as lord wisdom, that incubus of fire, returns to pass judgment over all. Those judged worthy shall join the master for all eternity at his side, knowing only truth and wisdom. Those judged unworthy shall be consumed, their flesh rent from their writhing bodies, only to know and endure an eternity of perpetual suffering.

Babylonian and Indian Astronomy: Early Connections | Chinese Constellation | The Mansions of the Moon (Yeats) | Fomalhaut | Fomalhaut | Piscis Austrinus (or Piscis Australis Southern Fish) | Fomalhaut | DENEB KAITOS | Astronomers Discover the Wake of a Planet Around a Nearby Star | Cetus the Whale | FOMALHAUT @ Kaler Stars | Fomalhaut @ SolStation | The Yatkar-i-Zariran or Memoirs of Zarir | The Yatkar-i-Zariran or Memoirs of Zarir | The Karnamik-i-Artakhshir or Records of Artakhshir | Angel Pictures: Muslim | Leo (Star Chart) | Arabic Lunar Mansion Names | Angels in Zoroastrianism | Four Cardinal Stars: Markers of the Great Cycle | The Lunar Zodiac | Mazzaroth: or, the Constellations (Table) | Star Names | Chinese Lunar Mansions | China Great Wall Megaliths Deciphered | Picatrix (The Aim of the Sage) | Picatrix | The Mansions of the Moon in Picatrix | Sabians | The Sabians of the House of Wisdom | The Picatrix: Lunar Mansions in Western Astrology | The Secrets of Ghâyat Al-Hakim | The Arabs and the Moon (PDF) | Grimoires in the Miskatonic University Library

Fomalhaut dust disk

On the road where they passed they dug up the way so much that owing to the dust the river stopped from flowing with its water to such an extent that it was not possible to drink the water for one month. For fifty days it was not clear, and birds did not find any resting-place, except when they sat on the heads of horses, on the points of spears, or on a mountain with lofty summit. Owing to the dust and smoke, night and day could not be distinguished.

Ancient Egypt: The Light of the World. Bryant copied from an ancient Maltese coin the figure of Horus, who carries the crook and fan in his hands and wears a fish-mitre on his head. This was Horus of the Inundation, who was emaned from the water as a fish and by the fish, but who is here portrayed in a human form with the fish’s mouth for a mitre on his head. (Bryant, v. 5, p. 384.) The wearer of the os tincae on his head is not only the fish-man in survival, the petticoated Pope is likewise a figure of the ancient fish-woman; she who sat upon the waters and on the seven hills of the celestial Heptanomis as a water-cow, who brought forth from the mystical mouth of the fish. The Pope is dressed in the likeness of both sexes. The os tincae of the papal mitre, equally with the star Fomalhaut in Piscis Australis of the planisphere, and the mouthpiece of the divine Word, is still the same antique as when the ancient Wisdom was first figured as the female fish, the crocodile, and the male fish was a likeness of the Saviour who came by water in the Inundation before Horus could come by boat, or float on the papyrus-plant in human form; so long has the fish been a zootype of emaning source in the Egyptian eschatology. The Pope impersonates the mouthpiece, the fish’s mouthpiece of the Word, and, as the imagery shows, the Word, or Logos, is the same that was uttered of old as a fish by the ancient mother-fish with the os tincae or mouth of utterance from which a child is born; so that the mother-church in Rome, as represented by the Pope, is still the living likeness of the fish-mother, who brought forth Horus of the Inundation as her fish in the Zodiac, at least some 12,000 or 13,000 years ago, and had never ceased to do so annually up to the time of rebirth in the sign of the fishes, when Papal Rome took up the parable but suppressed or omitted the explanation concerning the Christ now apotheosized as Ichthus the fish. Thus, as previously demonstrated, the proper date for the commencement of Christianity or equinoctial Christianity is somewhere about 255 B.C.

Adab al-Suluk: A Treatise on Spiritual Wayfaring. O slave of Allah! Know that you are a wayfarer (salik) seeking your Lord and ultimately one day you would meet Him, as said in a tradition: Whoever hopes to meet God should know that the time of the meeting will come. And you should know that God, the Exalted, by His perfect Might and Wisdom has destined two journeys for the Children of Adam. One of them is involuntary (qahri), and the other one is voluntary (ikhtiyari). As to the involuntary journey, the starting point is the father's loins (sulb); the second stage is the mother's womb; the third stage is the physical world; and the fourth stage is that of the grave, which is either a garden out of the gardens of paradise or is a pit out of the pits of hell. The fifth stage is the Day of Resurrection, which is equal to fifty thousand years of this world. After that stage you will reach your eternal home and attain the real abode - that is, the abode of peace (dar al-salam) and the paradise of security and peace, in case you are among the felicitous and the friends of the Haqq; or your home will be the abode of fire and torture, if, God forbid, you should be among the wretched and the enemies of the Haqq, as Allah has said: "On the Day of Resurrection a group will be in paradise and a group in hell." Every breath that you take is a step towards the stage of death. Every day of your life is equal to a parsang. Each month is like a stage (marhalah) and each year like a station (manzil). Your journey is like the movement of the sun and the moon - yet you are oblivious of this journey and movement - and in your ignorance and forgetfulness you have failed to make ready and equip yourself properly for the station (manzil) of the grave and the onward journey to the station of the Day of Resurrection and your eternal and real home. But the voluntary journey is of two kinds: one is the journey of the souls and the hearts toward the Almighty and All-powerful King of the world. The second is a physical journey (safar jismani) in the earth of God.

The Labors of Hercules. It is interesting to note that the Zodiac is spoken of as an illusion and as an imaginary path, an appearance. Webster's Dictionary, for instance, defines the Zodiac as "the imaginary path of the sun through the heavens", and in all books of reference upon the subject the emphasis is laid upon the fact that it is all appearance, the great illusion.

Seated Angel

Shipman’s Guide: Early Card-Packs and the Arcana. The necessary information for establishing the port was already present in the charts of the Catalan Atlas, along with the diagram of the 28 stages of the lunar path. Defined by the 28 asterisms which terminate those stages, the series was known as the lunar mansions, or inns. The Arabic term was manzil, the Chinese hsieu and the Indian nakshastra or 'conjunction'. Islamic spirituality associated each manazil with one in the succession of Islamic prophets (Naibs). Other traces of connection to the mariner's world remain in our common terms for cards and card-play: the 'deck' of cards, 'hands', 'busso' murnival, etc. The Persian and Arabic terms Ganjifa/Kanjifah appear to the present writer also to refer to the eastern mariner's practical sailing-grid of winds and stars. The mariner's world, and its system for universal divisions, seems to be an early and authentic stimulus to the card-pack's development in the west. I have noted elsewhere too that the French and Tarot pack's suit-signs: Rod, Sword, Gold and Cup are derived from well-known emblems25 for those stars which mariners especially used to name the cardinal points of direction. All four astronomical indicators are actually present on the Atlas Català, signifying the universal character of that region and of the Barbary Coast, notorious of pirates. The larger form of pack not only has those factors of the lunar path and the compass rose of 16 points in its minor arcana. It also has a higher set of figures which originally represented the chief navigational and surveying stars. Astronomy was not the specialised subject it is today but was one of the basic applications for mathematics, taught commonly as a kind of celestial geography, and peopled with constellations whose standard moral characters in Christian commentary had been known for centuries. Orion, star of the east, for example, was normally depicted as the giant and 'blind fool', whose device was most usually the flourishing rod. Though one is not surprised to find the major arcana cards omitted in the formation of that smaller, ordinary pack, the better educated could easily have recognised those figures, and seen in the minor arcana's quarter-signs an allusion to the standard devices for the cardinal four. In this way, the pattern of the larger pack as a forme for description of the status Mundi would have seemed self-evident to many. How well it was understood to derive from the world of the eastern mariner is harder to determine. "For we divide the ship in length and breadth according to the compass rose and we have measurements of star altitudes..." wrote Ibn Majid, a Moorish mariner of the India run who lived and wrote in the fifteenth century. A manuscript copy of his book is now in the same library as that holding the set of 'Charles VI' major arcana cards. The latter depict the 17 stars which named the points of the eastern mariners' sidereal Rose. Given all this, the present writer's view is that the 17 major arcana cards of Charles VI of France are more critically important for the history of western cards than the more commonly mentioned Visconti-Sforza. They tell us not only that the eastern mariner's sidereal Rose was known in addition to the western wind-rose before da Gama took pilotage from east Africa to India, but that the larger pack may be reasonably argued to deliberately structure its description of the 'status mundi' of the mnemonic habits of the eastern long-distance mariners. Each of the 17 figures in the Charles VI set is carefully drawn as a plan, or diagram, which imitates the form of its constellation, and then packs that outline form with meaningful elements [devices] which convey to the reader the content of well-known texts, and the increasingly used Arabic nomenclature in astronomy. Just as if each were a 'world-chart' in itself. This is how they were constructed ...