According to Hindu astronomy, solar eclipses are caused by the Moon being consumed by Rahu, and not by the Moon coming front of the Sun and causing a shadow to fall on the Earth.

The Chhandogya Upanishad makes reference to it:

  1. From the dark (the Brahman of the heart) I come to the nebulous (the world of Brahman), from the nebulous to the dark, shaking off all evil, as a horse shakes his hairs, and as the moon frees herself from the mouth of Râhu. Having shaken off the body, I obtain, self made and satisfied, the uncreated world of Brahman, yea, I obtain it.

However, this website by an ISKCON member claims that the Moon is actually farther from the Earth than the Sun, and that during a solar eclipse, the moon actually goes directly behind the Sun while Rahu actually comes infront of the Sun instead of the Moon.

  • 1
    In astrology, Rahu is a lunar node. May be what we call as Rahu and kedhu only what science calls as lunar nodes. Dec 11 '18 at 3:46
  • The first line is self-answering the question so it's not clear what is your actual question. Voting to close as unclear. Dec 11 '18 at 18:24
  • @sv. What I mean is, which view is correct? Hindu scripture's view or our current scientific consensus?
    – Ikshvaku
    Dec 11 '18 at 22:47
  • If that's the question, you should have simply linked to the ISKCON member's website and quoted their claim. You don't need the reference to Chandogya Upanishad. Right now you are pointing to a claim and also refuting it. That's why the question is unclear. Dec 12 '18 at 0:11
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    'Hindu scripture's view or our current scientific consensus?' - you are only allowed to ask Hindu scripture's view. Asking which view is correct amounts to scientific speculation so not allowed. Dec 12 '18 at 0:15

According to all Hindu scriptures, Rahu is responsible for causing the eclipses, whether it's lunar or solar. Have a look at the following Manu Smriti verse for example:

प्रतिगृह्य द्विजो विद्वानेकोद्दिष्टस्य केतनम् ।
त्र्यहं न कीर्तयेद् ब्रह्म राज्ञो राहोश्च सूतके ॥ ११० ॥

pratigṛhya dvijo vidvānekoddiṣṭasya ketanam |
tryahaṃ na kīrtayed brahma rājño rāhośca sūtake || 4.110 ||

After having accepted invitation to a unitary funeral rite, the learned Brāhmaṇa shall not recite the Veda for three days; as also during the impurity of the king and also of Rāhu.—(110)

The verse is talking about the days on which Veda study should not be done. And one such day is when Rahu is causing an eclipse.

Medhatithi's commentary is more clarifying in this regard:

The ‘Unitary Rite’ is that which is offered to a single ancestor; i.e., the fresh funeral rite (that which is performed after death);—having ‘accepted’—agreed to—‘invitation’ at that rite, it becomes an occasion unfit for study, for three days, counting from the day of the invitation.

Similarly, when ‘of the King’—i.e., of the Moon—there is ‘impurity,’ i.e., pouring of nectar towards Rāhu. ‘Also’ in this case, is meant to include the Sun also.

Or, the ‘impurity of the King’ may mean the rejoicings accompaying the birth of a son to the King, the ruler of men; and the ‘impurity of the Rāhu,’ for the eclipses of the Sun and the Moon, known as ‘grahaṇa,’ ‘catching.’—(110)

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