About the Book
Sarwarthachintamani is a splendid work on horoscopy or predictive astrology written by Sri Venkatesha Daivanga.
This translation into English by Prof. B. Suryanarain Rao (1856-1937) extends over almost 2000 stanzas of the original work in Sanskrit with copious notes and brings to the reader for the first time an authentic and true rendering of the text. The elaborate commentary, the simple but clear explanations and the numerous illustrations proceeding from Prof. Rao's rich experience of over 60 years in predictive astrology add to the worth of the volume.
Sarwarthachintamani is one of the most exhaustive works on astrology and the translation is exceptional and brilliant in bringing out the spirit of the original author.
Astrological principles dealt with in this book provide the most reliable information on marriage, nuptials, delivery, yogas, interpretation of Dasas, analysis of Bhavas, generally scattered her and there in other volumes are brought together in a simple, yet appealing style both by the original author Venkatesha and the translator Prof. Suryanarain Rao. With the aid of this book, analysis of the horoscope and timing of events become easier.
This translation covers the entire portion of the predictive section of Sarwarthachintamani. No student of astrology can afford to miss such a useful treatise encompassing in a single volume all that in needed to make one a successful astrologer.
A never to be missed translation from one of the best authorities on astrology.
About the Author
Prof. B. Suryanarain Rao (1856-1937), grandfather of Dr. B.V. Raman, Editor, The Astrological Magazine, was the first to pioneer astrological journalism in the country in the 19th century when he started the now internationally renowned. The Astrological Magazine, in 1895.
Prof. Rao was the author of Never-To-Be-Forgotten Empire; Hyder Ali or Sultan of Mysore; The Astrological self Instructor; Astrological Mirror; Astrological Primer; Karma and Chemistry; An Introduction to the Study of Astrology; Royal Horoscopes; Illustrative Horoscopes; Female Horoscopy. Besides, Prof. Rao translated into English several classical works like Brihat Jataka, Jaiminisutras, Jataka Chandrika, Satayogamanjari, Jatakakalanidhi, etc.
As the grandson and Private Secretary of the translator closely associated with him during his life-time, and as one engaged for the past nearly six decades in the study and application of astrology, it is my proud privilege to write a few words by way of Foreword to this work for the edification of the educated public.
Sarwarthachintamani (English translation) was considered as the magnum-opus of grandfater's wiritngs. The translation is clear, liberal and the style flowing, bringing fully the spirit of the original author. More than the translation, the detailed notes and comments enable any tyro in astrology to understand the text without much difficulty.
The exhaustive introduction written by the translator himself covers in detail the scope and comprehensiveness of this monumental work. Not a single important astrological item has been omitted. In fact the author has covered every aspect of astrology, including topics generally considered not quite important in some of the con-temporary classical writings. Prof. Rao clears not only the ambiguity that one may come across, making clear the intention of the original author, but also embodies his vast experience in his translation. The exhaustive notes and comments following the translation enable any tyro in astrology to understand the text without much difficulty.
The astrological world was poorer by the absence of a proper and authoritative translation of Sarwarthachintamani, one of the best-known classics on the subject. Whether one is abeginner, advanced student or a professional, this translation of Sarwarthachintamani is an invaluable work to hone up one's predictive skill.
The first edition of Part I was published I 1899 with original slokas in Devanagari. The second edition of Part I was published in 1933 without the original slokas. Parts II and III were written and published by grandfather in the 1920's. This great work brought out in three parts, in royal size was out of print for more than five decades, for reasons beyond our control.
When it was decided to print the second edition of Part I in 1933, the family was in great financial difficulties. However, the responsibility of getting it printed was thrust on me though no funds were available. I was able to persuade Mr. Mir Abdul Huq, Manager of the Modi Power Printing Press, Bangalore, to undertake the printing under terms which were inconvenient to me. This arrangement however helped us in bringing out the book but the entire bill had to be paid by me after the death of grandfather.
Part II and III remained out of print.
It is gratifying that Messrs Motilal Banarsidass Publishers Private Limited, pioneer publishers of innumerable books on our ancient philosophy, Yoga, psychology etc., have come forward to publish this great work. My thanks are due to them, and especially to Mr. J.P. Jain for having brought out this book in an attractive format.
Sarvarthachintamani is a splendid work on horoscopy or Phalabhaga of Jyotishasastra and is very important on that account as furnishing means for man to know his past, present and future. The English translation of this work, which extends over 1845 stanzas in original Sanskrit, and the notes and illustrations I have offered, will speak for them. Any further doubts and difficulties are intended to be cleared by the elaborate notes and illustrations given by me and the readers are earnestly requested to go through them carefully whenever they find any difficulty in understanding the texts. In the translation of a large and technical Sanskrit work like Sarvarthachintamani, it is possible to find passages which may not have been very correctly rendered into English or whose spirit might not have been properly represented in the same inviting form as it has been done in the original text. Readers have to understand the several difficulties which stand in the way of a translator and realize them before they venture to offer their criticism. English language is not Sanskrit and Sanskrit is not English. Without crying down this or that language about its relative merits, I may safely say that the idioms of the one language about its relative merits, I may safely say that the idioms of the one language cannot be easily rendered into the idioms of the one language cannot be easily rendered into the idioms of the one language cannot be easily rendered into the idioms of the other and in many cases they cannot be satisfactorily translated at all. Various causes have contributed to these difficulties and they are further increased in the fact that competency in English, Sanskrit and technical Sciences has not often been found in one and the same individual as each branch of the knowledge requires a lifelong study for itself. And any rendering of the one into the other in the absence of such a happy and rare combination of several branches of learning in one and the same person will but lead to many misrepresentations and mistakes. Helps to the study and understanding of these technical branches of knowledge are not forthcoming, while ideas relating to Astrology are very few and inadequate in the English language compared with what we possess in the original Sanskrit. The flexibility of Sanskrit has been a great stumbling block in the way of rightly understanding the technical words, and the extensiveness of its Tantras and Mantras, Sastras and Puranas, Medicine and Astrology, Rituals and Morals, Vedas and Vedangas add considerable difficulties in the same line and makes any comprehensive intellect to reel back from the difficult task which lies before him. A few words may be quoted here to illustrate what I mean. Take the word Soumya in Sanskrit. That which is born of Soma is Soumya. Soma is Chandra and Soumya therefore means Budha who is said to be the son of Chandra. But Soumya also means Shubagrahas or benefics as opposed to Papagrahas or malefics. A third interpretation for Soumya is good or mild as opposed t Krura or wild or cruel. Sometimes in stanzas which contains the word Soumay there is great difficulty in giving the proper interpretation, for besides Guru and Sukra, Budha is also classified as a Soumyagraha (good planet) under certain circumstances. Vakra is another word which has been well described in the Astrological works. Vakra is one of the many names given to Kuja or Mars. Vakra also means the state of any planet - Kuja, Budha, Guru, Sukra, and Sani when he is in retrograte or in his backward motion. The result sometimes so happens that either interpretation will suit the context and either may perhaps support the prediction. In the expression Vakram Hitva or Vena it may mean without Kuja or without a planet who is in his retrograde movement. The word Papam is applied to the 8th as well as the 12th houses and also means a malefic planet. Instances of such doubtful expressions which are capable of various interpretations can be multiplied by scores but these few words given here will show the nature of the difficulties, which a Translator of a Sanskrit work has to meet in the progress of his work. In some cases the names of the planets are indicative of the results, which they are supposed to give, and they are very aptly used in the Sanskrit language which can never be imitated in the English or any other foreign tongue. The word Satwika, refers to two states, one physical and the other mental. A man who possesses great physical energy is called a Satwika, one who has much Satwa (strength); or a person who possesses Satwaguna or pious dispositon. The three principal characteristics of the mind are Satwa, Raja and Thama, as they are classified in the Aryan Philosophical Works. In the expression Satwam kujaha, it may be possible to offer both the interpretations and both look plausible enough in connection with certain passages. Kuja represents according to some authors Satwaguna and also commands exuberance of physical energy. Budha means one who gives Buddhi or intellect and he controls wisdom, as he is represented to be the planet who gives gnanandriya (consciousness of self) to the otherwise unconscious foetus in the seventh month of its existence in the mother's womb. Guru means, Preceptor and big planet Jupiter. Sukra means seminal fluid, whiteness and planet Venus. Sani means, blackness, slowness and the planet Saturn. Rooksha means a constellation as well as a sign of the Zodiac. Rahu is called Thama and it means shadow of the junction of the two forces emanating from the Sun and the Earth. I have only attempted to give a few out of the many meanings which these words have in Sanskrit and these names are always used in their proper places to indicate the results which are likely to flow from the name of the planet in particular. There is a good deal of difficulty in a work of translation to reproduce faithfully what the original author wants to convey in his own concise, impressive and admirable style. Those who have got a good insight into the difficult languages they are handling will readily realize the responsibility, which rests on them as translators. Translation means the interpretation put upon the author by the translator and not the original forcible expression of the author, which may be interpreted in altogether a different way, by a clever student if he were allowed to examine the original text for himself. If therefore the work of translation is carelessly done, the science and the original authors suffer a good deal. This will, I believe be a good cause for anxiety for all right thinking men on whom rests the responsibility of rendering useful books from one language into another. Very few realize their position as Translators, and know the mischievous consequences, which flow to the world from their incapacity and carelessness. These, therefore, are not imaginary difficulties, which might be passed off as mythological by the intelligent interpreters of the original Sanskrit works. There is yet another difficulty which stares me in the face and which cannot be sighted. Astrology is necessarily a science intended for the guidance of man both in his temporal and also in his spiritual affairs. Conceptions of temporal and spiritual ideas are essentially different in the languages of English and Sanskrit and they have sprung up quite distinctly in the two countries of England and India under different religious, moral, social, political and physical conditions. India labours rightly or wrongly under the belief that she has almost forgotten her ancient civilization, and that her present children are mere pigmies when compared to the intellectual giants who tenanted her happy regions formerly, while England labours under the idea that she has reached the acme of civilization and that her present sons are so many intellectual giants when compared to the barbarous mental pigmies who tenanted her wild regions in the former times. The Aryan civilization is essentially spiritual while the English is mostly temporal or material. Here then lies the grand difference in thought and action between the two languages we have to deal with, and I have to draw the special attention of my readers to this singular but none the less important fact. English is a progressive language and has great ambition to assimilate useful ideas, which may be found in the foreign languages. But in Sanskrit the pretentions are of the highest kind and the language strictly forbids intrusion of any kind from the foreign language which are considered her progeny, taking sap from her for their existence, but never lending in return anything worthy to her. If success is to be secured in translations of Sanskrit works into English or any other language the best way would be to use the original Sanskrit word for which there may not be correct English equivalent. But these difficulties should not be allowed to obstruct our intellectual progress. Educated Hindus must make an attempt however, unsuccessful it mayu be at present - to overcome such difficulties, and I am one of the many who are labouring in this field of research and translation. Many new words have been coined in the English language, and I do not see why any person should be kept back from making such attempts, simply by the fear of being unjustly criticized, if he is otherwise capable and competent. Another difficulty is equally unsolvable. It is the technical nature of the Science of Astrology I have undertaken to reproduce in English. English Astrology seems to have been entirely borrowed from the Greek and Arabian astronomers and these in their turn appear to have borrowed it from the land of the Vedas where all knowledge flourished before the dawn of Western History. In this double transport and travel, English Astrology appears to have lost a good deal of its previous force and suefulness which it possessed in the original Sanskrit. Arabians, Persians, Chaldeans and Greeks who borrowed Astrology from the Maharishis of Aryawartha did so under special disadvantages of alien language and religion, and astrology apparently lost a good deal of its original value in this process of borrowing by nations differing from the Aryans in religion and language. National and religious differences, therefore, had a great deal to do with the degeneration which astrology as a science underwent at the hands of the foreign scholars who came to the land of the Vedas to drink in at the very fountain head of knowledge: and when this deteriorated system of astrology traveled into the uncongenial and barbarous regions of Western Europe, it was stripped of a good deal of its ornamentation andoriginal value. This noble and most complicated of all sciences had to be presented to the rude nations of Europe in a form comprehensible to their stinted intellectual attainments. We known, as matter of fact that the Western nations of Europe were almost without education two or three thousand years ago. Their priests, who monopolized all the learning of their lands, were men of very ordinary intellects and they were not in a position to understand properly the complicated formulas of the Astrological Sciences. The high mathematical proficiency which is expected in an astrological adept was completely absent in them, and their ignorance of the various branches of learning which are helps to the study of Astrology was against their understanding it properly. The Karma, Theory, so difficult to understand was the stepping stone to astrological information and the remedial portions, so abundantly found in the Hindu Astrological works, were completely left out for want of proper representation. A thorough insight into these various branches of knowledge alone could have made the astrological studies intelligible and this was too much to be taken in by those simple priest of the Western Europe, who never rose high in the intellectual sphere, and to whom all these complications meant nothing but utter mental confusion and chaos. Even unto this day the same difficulties stare the Western faces, in spite of the wonderful progress they have made in their arts of civilization. Whenever any references are made to Mani, Mantra and Oushadha they at once reject the whole science as false savouring too much of superstition and clashing with the declared principles of the Modern Sciences. Nobody knows exactly what science means nowadays, but every one talks of modern sciences as if it is the easiest thing for one to know in this world. The medical man talks of his noble science as much as the cobbler of his legal science while the chemist proclaims from the top of his voice in regard to the infallible nature of his science. The astronomer is of course a declared scientist, while the gastronomer is equally certain of the rules of his noble science. Photography is a science as much as orthography. But when we pin these worthies to the errors and contradictions found therein they attribute them to mistakes of calculation. The predictive portion of astrology is even more difficult that the rest of astrology for any one to understand: and in the comprehending of these rules the Western nations showed a complete failure. Astrological interpretations in a foreign language, especially in English, are no easy work, for any man to undertake; they are much more so far a man who has clearly the defects of the English language before him, and who is at the same time, conscious of the extensive nature of the Sanskrit idioms. I have already grown lengthy about the difficulties attending the translations of original Sanskrit works into English and only request the readers of these pages to be a little more indulgent in judging of the merits of a work of this nature which I have undertaken to translate in spite of these obstacles. I have freely used Sanskrit expressions wherever I found difficulty in selecting an appropriate English word, and this I hope, prevented me from falling into as many errors in my translation, as otherwise I should have been guilty of. The pronunciation of the Sanskrit words is another difficulty. However, nicely the spelling may be modified, the pronunciation at once tells its own doleful tale and affects the construction which may be put upon the sentence or part of the sentence, which we wish to produce in our work.
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