Definition of Hindu Sunrise and Hindu Sunset

Useful Tips on
Hindu Sunrise & Sunset
Q.2. How Hindu Sunrise and Sunset moments are different from astronomical Sunrise and Sunset?
Hindu sunrise and sunset are not observational and should not be matched with those published in various newspapers.

Astronomical (NOT astrological) sunrise is defined as time of first appearance of the upper limb of the sun. The sunset is the moment of disappearance of the upper limb (limb - the edge of the disc of a celestial object, esp. of the sun and moon). Hence all daily newspapers give sunrise timings when the edge of the disk i.e. upper limb is visible above eastern horizon.

For astrological calculation this sunrise cannot be used. For religious and astrology purposes the time when the middle of the sun's disk rises above eastern horizon is used. All festival determinations are done based on 'Madhyalimb Darshan' when middle of the disk becomes visible at eastern horizon.

Further, Hindu Sunrise and Sunset ignores refraction. Due to refraction Sun becomes visible even when it is below eastern horizon. Hindu Sunrise is planetary i.e. centre of Earth and Sun should align to eastern horizon.

Hindu Sunrise = Astronomical Sunrise + Time taken by Sun to rise half of its diameter (i.e. 16’ – angle of 16 minutes) + Time taken by Sun to rise further to neutralize refraction effect (to align with centre of Earth i.e. 34’ – angle of 34 minutes).

Check difference between Observational and Geometric Sunrise and Sunset side by side.
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