The Sun’s annual transit through Gemini is called Āni (Jyeshtha/Moola) in the sidereal solar calendar. This year its between 15th June and 16th July. Sun directly aspects Sagittarius and its nakshatras (Moola and Ashadhas) while transiting Gemini. Jyeshtha being Scorpio’s nakshatra is mentioned here because of the unequal nakshatras. Nakshatras have unequal lengths unlike signs, but for our convenience it's made with a mean system so every nakshatra stretches for 13 degrees 20 minutes exactly. The tail of Scorpio extends deep into Sagittarius, thus Jyeshtha and Moola represent similarities in their approach.
image source: elephantjournal.com
Āni (ஆனி) in tamil/sanskrit means the deepest point (the edge of a root/sword/needle), pivot and axis. It also means singularity where everything meets and merges into one, which inturn evolves into something new. The theme of this month is about finding the end/limit to explore/understand it. For ex. if you wanna break your fear you need to understand the root of it. Whatever you’ve been embracing, indulging will take a new shape in this month especially in the second two weeks.
Religious and spiritual significance
Āni Uttiram aka Āni Tirumanjanam (Holy bath) is a festival dedicated to Lord Nataraja (Shiva). Lord Nataraja represents Ether (Akash) among Pancha Bhutas. The festival takes place on the day of Uttara Phalguni (Uttiram) nakshatra which is connected to Lord Shiva. It is said that on this day Lord Nataraja gave darshan to his devotees. Holy bath (Abhishekam) of the idol will be performed during the sunset period (Pradosham) on this day. This kind of Holy bath is performed only a few times in a year. One of the other days comes in the month of Margashirsha (between December and January) which is called Arudra Darshan.
The difference between Arudra Darshan and Āni Uttiram is that the former is done at the morning twilight and the latter is done at the time of sunset. Our one year is one day for the devas based on their dimension (according to vedas). Their dawn occurs at the time of our Margashirsha month and sunset occurs at the time of Āni month. Dawn is before sunrise (Brahma Muhurta) and sunset is Pradosham time which is also auspicious because the time of tamas will start after sunset so its important to worship at sunset time. According to Shaivism, Lord Nataraja is the true form of Lord Shiva which demonstrates the five-fold functions of the universe such as creation, preservation, destruction, concealment and salvation through Maya.
Read more about Lord Nataraja
Sun moves towards the southern hemisphere from July to December (in the sky) and moves towards the northern hemisphere from January to June based on the sidereal timeline. Āni month marks the midway when the sun appears to be stationary before starting its movement towards the south. The daylight in the tropics shall be gradually decreasing from july onwards till december.