The syllabus primarily includes the jyotiṣa classic Bṛhat Parāśara Horā Śāstra as available today. The various chapters are grouped into various “Topics” to be covered in five years to attain the level of the Jyotiṣa Paṇḍita from Devaguru Bṛhaspati Center [under the by-laws of the governing body Śrī Jagannāth Center®]. Certificate of completion is issued after successful completion of these programs.Course Dates
The course for each academic year of the Parāśara Jyotiṣa Program (Jyotiṣa Paṇḍita) shall commence from Makara saṅkrānti (about 15 January). Online lessons can be accessed by PJC Members who will also have access to recordings and power-point presentations. Live classes will be organized by individual mentors according to schedule.Live Class Meetings
Most of the classes will be held through webinars and discussions through out the year in online platforms. PJC Vishvanath taught by Freedom Cole and Eric Rosenbush will have weekly classes to support students following the course schedule. Those who cannot make live classes will have access to recordings through the PJC site. A facebook group will give announcements and discussion of the active topics in between classes.Contact Classes
The contact course shall be for 10 days (each year, refer syllabus) in Himalaya, India or suitable location. Other mentors may choose other suitable locations and are required to announce this well in advance for the benefit of the students. Course Fees for any academic year does not include travel, stay or any other cost associated with the contact course.The Himalaya Contact classes shall always commence from the “first Thursday and end in the second Sunday” covering a total period of 10 days of tuition. The dress code for men is white. Married women should wear some colour as white is for brahmachari and widows. The students have to be completely lacto-vegeterian during the tenure of the course. Consumption of alcohol, drugs or any substance abuse is strictly prohibited. Take this opportunity to bring about a life change for the better.
Attendance is optional and those who cannot travel can inform their course mentor. However, you have to come of one of the four contact courses to become eligible for graduation.
Students are also required to be initiated into the Gayatri mantra. Arrangements will be made for this for those who do not have Gayatri diksa. Other initiations will be available through out the 5 year time period.
All courses are designed and class material taught by Pt. Sanjay Rath.
The course takes five years to complete. Each year a new batch enters Year 1 with a Mentor to guide the students. These mentors are alternately chosen form Asia and World (remaining other parts).
The online Vishvanath batch is mentored by Freedom Cole (Jyotisa Guru, Jaimini Scholar, NAMA Ayurvedic Practitioner, C-IAYT Yoga Therapist, MA Clinical Psychology ) and Eric Rosenbush (Jyotisa Pandita, Jaimini Scholar, Doctor of Oriental Medicine).
Admissions commence from 1 October, 2020 and you must contact the Course mentor for scholarships. Else, just pay the fees and join the course. Early bird fees are applicable for those joining early
The course involves study of the monumental classical Sanskrit literature authored by Maharṣi Parāśara – Bṛhat Parāśara Horā Śāstra, which forms the foundation of Vedic astrology. Every śloka will be examined in depth and Sanskrit words explains and translated in English. All study will be with ample illustrations as is the method of the tradition which shows the use of the teachings. Rather than just remember śloka by rote, which is also encouraged, it is better to remember them through application which causes the knowledge to sink deep. The student will develop a thorough understanding of the principles involved and the tradition encourages in-depth thinking to bring out jyotiṣa consciousness.
Brahma taught the Vedas and Vedāṅga (which includes Jyotiṣa) to his mind-born son Nārada. Some Jyotiṣa teachings are available in the Nārada saṁhitā. In turn devarṣi Nārada passed this knowledge to Maharṣi Saunaka. Maharṣi Parāśara was the disciple of Maharṣi Saunaka and received the complete knowledge of the Vedas and vedāñga from his spiritual master in addition to substantial learning from his most illustrious grandfather Maharṣi Vasiṣṭha.
His magnum opus Bṛhat Parāśara Horā Śāstra is in the traditional form of dialogue with his śiṣya Maharṣi Maitreya wherein the humble disciple makes sincere queries and is taught the complete Horā Śāstra. An exactly similar dialogue exists between Parāśara and Maitreya in the Viṣṇu Purāṇa. Therefore it is imperative to also study this purāṇa to develop a better understanding of the teachings of the seer. In our tradition three books are considered the foundation –
BPHS takes 5 months to read, max! why does this course need 5 years?
Every subject has levels of knowledge and the same book can be taught at different levels. I studied Shakespeare’s ‘Julius Caesar’ for my 10th Grade and am pretty sure that the Masters level students in English Literature who study the same book would be doing more justice to it. Consider the pronunciation of words.
When I was four, I dropped a book on the floor and my mother taught me to pick it up and place it back. Then to touch the book and say ‘विष्णु’ (viṣṇu), to touch my head and say ‘विष्णु’ (viṣṇu) again and finally a third time, to touch my heart and say ‘विष्णु’ (viṣṇu). I was too small to understand the value f such an important lesson, a lesson that would change the course of my life, a lesson that would bring the wealth of knowledge to my head. I was so small that I could not even pronounce the holy name ‘विष्णु’ (viṣṇu) and would say biṣṭu-biṣṭu-biṣṭu …
Don’t look for short-cuts as that is the surest way to delude yourself. Hurting your intelligence is the surest way to hurt yourself. Ādi Śaṅkara called jyotiṣa the ocean of vedic sciences and refused to debate on this topic as one lifetime is not sufficient to finish the debate. By accepting that you can read this huge secret vedic science in just about six months is a sign that your ahaṁkāra has definitely got the better of you. Please do not delude yourself. It has taken me more than three decades of sincere study every day to fathom some of the depths of this ocean. It will take you as much time and you can choose to start today, or maybe in ten years, or maybe in the next life. This choice is yours – and this is really the freewill you can exercise.
Jyotiṣa is the safest path through the terrible darkness in this age of ignorance (Kali Yuga). Very often I meet people who are so tied down with the chore of earning money and survival, so caught up in their daily life that they just cannot find any time for study. Well, that is exactly what Kali Yuga is about. You will become a slave of Kubera, the god of wealth and will be dragged around the planet like a draught animal and will spend the rest of your existence either pitying yourself (most of the time) or patting your back (rare) when you think that you pulled the cart (job) better than your colleagues. How long will you live under this carrot-and-stick formula of this Kali Yuga? Is it not time to say a prayer to Lord Śiva, the great Tryaṁbakkaṁ who shows the path to emancipation?
om namaḥ śivāya namaḥ mukteśvarāya
And we are only saying that we need ‘a few academic years’ and will allow you to learn at your natural pace while we will keep urging you on. We expect you to take about 15 months and would advise you to keep a target of 12 months to finish the first year of PJC. Work systematically and the you will finish this academic year in time and will join the rest of the batch in PJC Year-2.