The Horoscope is a term associated with \u2018mumbo-jumbo\u2019 \u2018blind faith\u2019 etc in the Western world.\nBut in olden day India, this was a science.\nWhen I was younger I was a skeptic and did not believe that this was scientific. But then I had not studied the subject enough and went along with the then-current sentiment of the people of my age / era to reject the traditional and embrace modern ways as the only correct way.\nToday after much examination and analysis, I find myself non-aligned to every ideology and no single body seems to be satisfactory. So I\u2019ve taken bits and pieces from each to create a unique recipe that works for me.\nSo the single most attractive thing that I took from the Hindu Dharma is the science found deep within the scriptures.\nThe accuracy of the knowledge of the stars and planets proved through astronomical marvels the various sun temples (Konark, Modhera and others) is one of the many reasons that attracts me.\nI see the scriptures as a complete and fundamental thesis on the way the world works and a proposed way of life. At the ground level this eventually became a social belief system which later was adulterated and exploited by social power brokers over the centuries. And thus came be classified under the category of \u2018religion\u2019.\nIn a multi-religious school I often faced the question \u2013 What do you believe in?\nBut the more I read about the Hindu books \u2013 translated by monumental scholars\u00a0 like Sarvepalli Radhakrishnan, it is clear that such a question simply cannot apply to Hinduism. It is NOT a \u2018faith\u2019. For a faith requires unquestioned belief.\nIn the early \u201980s at a lecture\u00a0on the Bhagavad Gita \u2013 a core book in the Hindu Philosophy \u2013 delivered by Dr. Karan Singh \u2013 an eminent scholar, I learnt about the scales of time and about mass and energy manifestations \u2013 body & soul.\u00a0 I do not recall completely understanding it as I sat there in the public lecture in a large auditorium of Bharatiy Vidya Bhavan that I had attended casually after my Physics lectures at St.Xaviers College. But I do recall thinking \u2013 wow \u2013 there seems to be no difference in the rigour or the depth between both Physics and the Philosophy of Hinduism.\nI was 17 then. Today at 51 I still agree with that one thought \u2013 that there is as much completeness and consistency in the original scriptures of Hindusim as there is in the books Feynman Lectures on Physics.\nThe scriptures may well have been a thesis on physics and other sciences.\nBut, through the many slips between the cup & and lip that inevitably creep in during the dissemination, the files got corrupted. Some intentionally at the hands of the power mongers, others unintentionally as a result of\u00a0 the \u2018chinese-whispers-game\u2019 type of distortion.\nSo be that as it may\u2026. after this long-winded introduction \u2026let me continue on to our beautiful world of art \u2026.\nSo once upon a time, Horoscopes were very powerful documents.\nIt was a practice among Hindu families to create an astrological chart for every new born baby\u00a0 based on the positions of the planets, sun, moon and stars at the time and location of the child\u2019s birth.\nThe aim of such a chart is to foretell the future of the child, the stumbling blocks she might face, the areas in which success will be achieved and more.\nThese were once a critical tool for fixing marriages \u2013 as it was important that the charts of the two individuals were harmonious. Conflicting horoscopes could be deal breakers\u00a0 in arranging the marriage.\nOver the years as the child grows up and important decisions need to be taken to determine her life path, this document is consulted to see what is favorable and what is not.\nMost Janam Patris / Janmakshar usually show 2-3 calculation charts and are no longer than a dozen pages.\u00a0 All the ones that I had seen in my family, works made in the 1940s and later were arranged in the form of notebook bindings about the size of a quarter of an A4 paper sheet.\nSo when I came across this 200 inch scroll I was enthralled!\nThis long scroll created by gluing together single sheets of handmade paper is something I have not seen ever before!\nFurther the fact that it is hand colored and has been painted so elaborately dazzled me!\nThe cultural element \u2013 the most interesting layer of all the art I collect \u2013 included painted figures of several Gods! The 9 figures depict the gods that preside over each of the 9 planets (in the vedas all 9 were mentioned), Vishnu and Ganesh. Further, Buddhist symbols have also been painted in.\nThe future of the newborn\u00a0 is scripted in Devnagari and the language is probably Sanskrit.\nThe art, the length and the general richness of the manuscript suggests that this was commissioned by a wealthy / royal family!\nDated the year of Vikram Samvat 1868 (1811 A.D. Gregorian Calendar)\u00a0 the age adds glamour of such a piece, but only a little \u2013 because in itself irrespective of the age, it is a beautiful survivor from a vanishing culture.\nAnd the baby? Let us hope that he or she had a happy & healthy life and his great-great-great-great-great-great-grandchildren are among us today!\n\n\n\n\n\nView more images here \njm\nFeb 2017\n\nSave\nSave\nThe post The Art in Future Foretold \u2013 Antique Horoscope appeared first on The Art Blog by WOVENSOULS.COM.