Dictionary Of Hindu Religion | Dictionary
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Winter Solstice. There are two Solstices in a year - Summer Solstice which falls on 22 June, and Winter Solstice which falls on 22 December. The Summer Solstice is called Dakshinaayan as from this day the Sun starts moving towards Southern side (Capricorn line); and the Winter Solstice is called Uttaraayan as from this day the Sun moves towards Northern side (Cancer line).
When the Sun turns towards Northern side, the day starts increasing and the night starts decreasing. Although it starts happening any day around 22nd December, but people celebrate the Sun's transit into Capricorn Sign from 14th January. In the other half, from around 22 Jun, the Sun travels Southward that is why it is called Dakshinaayan Kaal. From this time the day time staarts dectreasing and the night time starts increasing. That is why these periods are called Uttaraayan and Dakshnaayan Kaal.
Thus the first 6 months of the year, Dec-Jun, is called Uttaraayan or Gyaan Path; and the other half of the year, the later 6 months, Jun-Dec, is called Dakshinaayan or Saadhanaa Path. In terms of Saadhanaa, Dakshinaayan is for purification, and Uttaraayan is for enlightenment.
Sync With Solstices
When the Sun is in the Southern side, what is below the Anaahat Chakra can be purified very easily. While the Sun is in the Northern side, what is above the Anaahat Chakra can be worked out much more easily. If you look at the Chakra as two different dimensions, the lower ones, the Manipoorak, the Swaadhishthaan, and the Moolaadhaar, are more concerned in keeping the body stable, and rooted. These are the Earth qualities. They pull you to the Earth. The more you ascribe your energies to these three centers, the more your qualities will become earthy and in the grip of nature. The upper Chakra, the Vishuddhi, Aagyaa, and Sahasraar, are three centers which are always taking you away from the Earth. If your energies become dominant in these centers, it is pulling you away from Earth. These centers make you open to another force which we normally refer to as Grace – it is always trying to take you away from Earth. So between the first three and the last three, the first three are pulling you towards the Earth, the last three are pulling you away from the Earth. Anaahat Chakra is a balance between the two.
The human body, if brought to a certain level of intensity and sensitivity, is a cosmos by itself. Everything that happens in the external sphere, in a subtle way, manifests in the body. It is happening to everybody, it is just that most people do not notice this. But a more organized and purposeful rearrangement of the human mechanism could be done if one becomes conscious of the external movement and aligns that with the movement that is happening within the human system. If you want this body of flesh and bone to imbibe the nature of the cosmic body, understanding and being in tune with this movement of Uttaraayan and Dakshinaayan is very essential.
Created by Sushma Gupta on 3/15/06
Updated on 08/14/12