Month | ruling deity
चैत्र | रूद्र
वैशाख | सरस्वती
ज्येष्ठ | लक्ष्मी
आषाढ़ | काली
श्रावण | इन्द्र
भाद्रपद | मित्र
आश्विन | पर्जन्य
कार्तिक | वायु
अग्रहायण | वरुण
पौष | भग
माघ | ब्रह्म
फाल्गुन | विष्णु
On Makara Sankranti:
Makara Sankranti is designed to be roughly aligned with the start of Pausha mAsa. Accordingly, in some regions MS is called as pausha sankranti.
Further, Makara Sankranti has got nothing to do with 21/22 December (winter solstice).
On the overall framework:
1) makara sankranti is NOT the start of uttarAyaNa. And neither makara-sankranti nor uttarayana-onset is equal to winter solstice.
2) Uttarayana starts when surya enters kumbha constellation (dhanishtha), or more precisely, at the onset of mAgha mAsa. Kumbha+mAgha (i.e. uttarayana) is celebrated as mAghi kumbhotsava throughout North India, and in particular at prayAga.
3) Uttarayana originally meant — the year half that increased dharma/ “light”/ “day”. In short, this has something to do with the “northwards” progression of the wheel of Time within the panchanga framework of the Hindus. An in-depth discussion is beyond the scope of the present article.
4) A literal understanding of the above resulted in conflating uttarayana-onset with winter solstice.
5) The chief cause of the above misfortune was– winter solstice coinciding with the real uttarayana i.e. with kumbha sankranti (more precisely, the start of mAgha mAsa) at the very start of the present kaliyuga. (nothing unusual about it though : equinoxes and solstices have marked sankranti-s at the yuga transits)
6) The pauranika/ paurusheya texts, for example, which state “uttarayana” (wrongly understood as winter solstice) as coinciding near makara sankranti, simply present the fact: the winter solstice no longer coincided with kumbha, that is, the literal uttarayana no longer coincided with the real uttarayana.
7) As stated before, we can calculate the age of such texts from their mention of the literal uttarayana occurring in makara sankranti. All this unambiguously places Mahabharata at ~3000 BCE.
8) people are however no doubt free to follow any calender (or religion, or film star, etc) that suits their taste. We already have purnimanta, amanta, angrezi, sarkAri, etc going on so we can have even more.
9) The Hindu luni-solar panchanga is a natural framework that maps seasons not in a one-on-one fashion with time but as in a two dimensional matrix having yuga as one extra “y-cordinate”. It is only natural that if pausha is today winter then the same should be the summer for people in the far opposite end of the yuga chakra. This y-cordinate charts out a natural itihAsa, simply to be gleaned from the surviving narrations of people from the past yuga-s.
10) Not relevant to the current topic, but just in case someone is wondering — in my (limited) understanding kaliyuga started near Krishna’s departure (~3000 BCE) and will continue upto ~3500 AD. Yuga-s, unsurprisingly, are an inbuilt feature of Hindu Panchanga.