Svacchaya, Svacchāyā, Sva-chaya: 1 definition


Svacchaya means something in Hinduism, Sanskrit. If you want to know the exact meaning, history, etymology or English translation of this term then check out the descriptions on this page. Add your comment or reference to a book if you want to contribute to this summary article.

Alternative spellings of this word include Svachchhaya.

In Hinduism

Jyotisha (astronomy and astrology)

[«previous next»] — Svacchaya in Jyotisha glossary
Source: Wisdom Library: Brihat Samhita by Varahamihira

Svacchāyā (स्वच्छाया) refers to “one’s own shadow”, according to the Bṛhatsaṃhitā (chapter 5), an encyclopedic Sanskrit work written by Varāhamihira mainly focusing on the science of ancient Indian astronomy astronomy (Jyotiṣa).—Accordingly, “[...] If, as some say, there be two Rāhus, when the moon is eclipsed by one of them at rising or setting how comes it we see the sun in the opposite point uneclipsed by the other Rāhu of equal motion? The truth is that in her own eclipse, the moon enters the shadow of the earth, and in that of the sun, the solar disc. Hence, the lunar eclipse does not commence at the western limb nor the solar at the eastern limb. Just as the shadow of a tree [i.e., svacchāyāvṛkṣasya svacchāyā] neither continues in the same direction nor of the same length, so changes the shadow of the earth, night after night owing to the revolution of the sun”.

Jyotisha book cover
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Jyotisha (ज्योतिष, jyotiṣa or jyotish) refers to ‘astronomy’ or “Vedic astrology” and represents the fifth of the six Vedangas (additional sciences to be studied along with the Vedas). Jyotisha concerns itself with the study and prediction of the movements of celestial bodies, in order to calculate the auspicious time for rituals and ceremonies.

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