Indra, his esoteric significance

Devraj Indra, the king of dev-s. Let’s first look at these Sanskrit words.

  • Dev – deity, wish to overcome, desire to excel, prince, priest, play, sense-organs, king, divine, copy, cloud, offspring, radiance, divine light, resonance, etc.
  • Raj – sovereign, meter in prosody, radiant, shining, guidance, governance, etc
  • Indra – night, human soul, geometric figure, pupil of the eye, chief, first, excellent, ruler of the east direction, god of the sky, royal, the individual soul/ jiv-atma etc.

Indra is the hero, the warrior, the invincible King of the Dev-s. He is the enjoyer of absolute prosperity, Param-aishwarya. His other names are, Amrish, Devesh, Gyanendra, Mahendra, Purandar, Sachin, Shatamanyu, Satipati, Suresh, Svar-raj, Vajrapani, Vajrin, Vrittahan, Vruddha-shrava, Sutrama, Gotrabhit, Sunasheera, Purohuta etc. Now put these meanings together to get a glimmering as to who and what Indra really is.

Indra is the power who brings life on this earth in all ways possible. Indra controls the sense organs, by energising them with his power. His power is the power of the Jivatma directly linked to the Param-atma. On the esoteric levels, Indra is you, your individual soul/ Jivatma. The conscious essence that you are, is Indra. Your mind, body, soul, your existence. You are the hero of your world, Indra.

Indra is the ruler of the East/ poorva direction. He is the dawn of radiance. Also the ancestral energy most closely connected to the source.

Indra is the yajnya-palak. Yajnya is the continuous evolution of the individual soul/ jivatma. Every action you take is technically a ‘yajnya’. He protects you as you unceasing make efforts to attain the highest Param-Atma. He is the one who gets the energy of the main oblations/ havish offered in the Yadnya. ie when you perform any action you yourself get the main energy linked to that action. If you do good for others know that you are actually doing good for your own self. Conversely if you hurt others you hurt your own self first. Indra also destroys all those who obstruct the performance of yajnya-s. If you want to perform auspicious actions your internal Indra is the one who will help you. Shakra, he is the destroyer of discordant energy. Remember that yajnyas are essentially internal. You offer your Pran with the mantra into your own internal Agni. Thus Indra ie your individual soul receives this energy. There is no concept of an external ‘god’ in Sanatan Dharma. It is all internal, within you.

He is Lokpalak, the guardian/ ruler/ protector of the worlds including the Prithvi, Antariksha and Vyom. Without his support the universe cannot exist. He is the Marutvan. He controls the subsidiary deities called Marut-gan. They are 7 divided into further 7. आवहः Aavaha controls the movement of the earth. प्रवहः Pravaha is connected to the Surya mandala. उद्वहः Udvaha is the one who provides movement in the chandra mandala. सुवहः Suvaha for the luminous heavenly bodies. विवहः Vivaha provides motion to the graha of Jyotish. परावहः Paravaha provides movement in the realm of the Sapta-rishi/ Seven Seers. परिवहः Parivaha is the motion of the Dhruva mandala. These realms are not only in the external space but also within you. Do your spiritual practice to experience them.


The rakshak/ protector of the Dev-Lok, he guards the seat of the divine illumination. He is the Swarg-adhipati, he rules over and protects the incredible energies of the heavenly realms and its treasures. The Swarg-lok has the Ratna/ jewels which emerged out of the Samudra Manthan, these include the Kalpa-vriksha, Kaam-dhenu, Parijaat, Airavat, Amrut etc.

Indra is the Go-rakshak. He brought back the ‘Go’ when they were stolen by Asuras. Go is said to mean cows but it is one of the most complicated words in Sanskrit to understand and then experience, Go has hundreds of meanings like cows, thunderbolt, leather strap, stars, sky, skin, body, light rays, milk, hair, bow string, water, sun, singer, sense-organs, moon, medicinal plants, third eye, one who goes, billion, voice, speech, Devi Sarasvati, Vak, number 9, mother, earth, etc etc. Indra is the energy which protects the internal Go within you from the Asur/ discordant energies.

In the Ved it is said that Indra is the only one who drinks maximum amounts of Soma, Somapa. (I have described the nature of Soma in this post.) Essentially Anna is converted to Soma. Soma is further transduced into Pran. Indra consumes Soma, the purest form of conscious energy and then goes to fight his enemies. The esoteric significance of this is that only when the Jiv-atma has access to maximum amount of Soma can he create the necessary boost of Pran. This Pran will be then channelised into the Sushumna to fight the karmic imprints/ discordance within. Later this Pran will be used to activate the Kundalini, which will rise as a flashing thunderbolt.


Indra is mentioned in every allegory, every Ithihas of Sanatan Dharma.

Ramayan is about the ‘travels of Ram’ so naturally Shri Ram is the main hero. But the main deity mentioned maximum times in the Valmiki Ramayan is Indra. His name Shakra शक्र is mentioned 182 times, Indra इन्द्र 164 times, Mahendra महेन्द्र 95 times, Vasav वासव 74 times, Sahastraksh सहस्राक्ष 54 times, Purandar पुरन्दर 31 times, Shatkratu शतक्रतु 29 times, Vajrin वज्रिन् 25 times, Devraj देवराज 16 times, Pakshashan पाकशासन 11, Sureshwar सुरेश्वर  10, Shachipati शचीपति  8 and Maghvan मघवान् 6 times. In Ramayan, Indra first ‘kills’ Maruti by breaking his jaw and then later revives him and gives him the boon of immortality, makes him a Chiranjeevi. Indra gave Shri Ram his own chariot, charioteer, weapons etc during the war with Ravan. Indra brought back the dead Vanar-s to life when Shri Ram requested him to do so. Indra is very much a major part of the Ramayan.

Then when you study the Mahabharat, again there are several references to Indra. Arjun, the major actor of the Mahabharat, is the son of Indra. Arjun was created by mantras recited by Kunti. Kunti’s other name is Prutha, ie Earth. So then Arjun represents the creative power, the inherent divinity, the genius, the active intelligence, the projection etc, the ‘son’ of Indra which is materialised ie ‘brought by mantras on the earth’.  Indra helps the Pandav-s several times, eg by ensuring that Karna gets cursed, by taking away Karna’s kavach-kundal, by giving the Pandav-s divine astra-weapons for fighting the war, protecting them from time to time etc. The Mahabharat is also an esoteric text. In this, Shri Krishna narrates the Yog-shastra Bhagvat Gita to Arjun. So the highest Consciousness (Param-atma), Krishna, describes to the genius of the limited consciousness (Jiv-atma), Arjun, how it can attain the highest Consciousness itself. This is the deepest secret within the Mahabharat.

My favourite Shri-sukta. As per the Laxmi tantra, Devi Mahalaxmi describes and gives this Sukta to none else but Indra. The Ved-s are majorly about Indra. If you read through the allegories and histories of Sanatan Dharma you will realise that Indra is the main pivot around which things happen.

Now I need to write a bit about the Ved-s and the Puran-s.

We have lost a significant portion of Ved, ie the associated Samhita, Brahmana, Aranyk, Upanishad texts etc are incompletely available now. But in what we have at this moment, Indra is without a doubt the most significant Vedic deity. Eg in the Rg Ved, 239 out of 1028 sukta are exclusively composed in his honor. Additional 27 sukta, where he is mentioned with other deities. The Ved describe Indra, his activities, his powers, his heroic achievements. Ved have no origin, there were directly seen from the Akash by enlightened Seers/ Rishi-s. The Vedic age was one of significant enlightenment where even general people were aware of the internal divinity/ Indra within them, and they would make active efforts using the Sukta-s etc to pull themselves higher towards the Param-Atma. The sukta-s dedicated to Indra were used to awaken/ energise their internal Indra. Now unfortunately we are not capable of using these as such and the knowledge too has hidden itself.

Then we come to the Puran-s. In these stories, other deities like Shankar (sometimes called Shiv), Vishnu Brahmadev come into focus. These three deities are the conscious energy of the Satva, Raja and Tamas Gun-s. The Puran were composed by Rishi-s, eg the author of several major Puran-s is Maharshi Vyas. Regarding Indra, in the Puran, there are mainly two recurring themes.

Theme 1 – Indra by his action/ inaction gets into trouble. The negative forces like Daityas, Rakshas-s, Danav-s etc attack him and the Dev-lok, the realm of Divine radiance is in trouble. He rushes to the Tri-dev ie Vishnu Shankar, Brahmadev and requests help. These three deities are generally shown to be in deep Dhyan or asleep, ie inanimate. Only when Indra comes knocking, are they roused and help him defeat his foes. If you analyse this, the only player who acts of his own volition is Indra. He commits mistakes, loses, does penances, wins etc. The several other players help/ hinder/ interact with him in different ways, eg by giving him blessings, weapons, taking avatars or by attacking, cursing him etc. (ie You have to use the energies of the Satva, Raja and Tama Gun to destroy the discordance within you. eg Satva-gun ie Mahavishnu will help Indra in making his Vajra.)

Theme 2 – A Rishi starts doing intense spiritual practice/ Tap. The fierce energy created by this Tap starts shaking the throne of Indra. He feels insecure and sends his Apsara-s to disturb the Rishi and break his sadhana. Sometimes the Apsara succeed and sometimes fail. The Apsara are turbulences in the stillness of the mind, but here these are controlled by Indra. Here Indra is operating at his dullest level of consciousness thus scared of the fire generated by Tapasya. He tries to stop the Tapasya so that he can continue to enjoy the illusion of the jiv-atma/ individual soul. (ie. If you are at the lower levels of spiritual evolution, then try not to get scared by the concept of spiritual practice. Initally the mind will fight it, but later will actively help you in your routine.)

What actually happened during the Puranic times was that the inner awareness of the general population decreased. They started losing touch with their internal divinity. Their internal Indra started getting into trouble, attacked more by negative forces. So the Gun-s, Satva-Vishnu, Raja-Brahmadev and Tamas-Shankar had to be invoked to help Indra. Here the level of the aspirant was lowered in the sense he could not directly invoke Indra using the Vedic suktas directly anymore. So the via media of the three Gun-s energy had to be used. So we have the typical puranic prayers to the Tri-dev. Indra, though shown to be less glamorous, still is the central theme. Indra will always remain the central theme, because he is the Jiv-atma, the player in the Game of Creation. You are the only hero, the only actor in your life, the rest around you only help/ hinder you.

And now we are in the Kali yug, so the internal Indra for most of us is generally overwhelmed by Asur forces, unable to counter-act them.

You are Indra. Puranic or Vedic? Or at a level even lower than the Puranic? Evaluate for yourself.

Indra, as per the Puran-s, is the son of Maharishi Kashyap and Aditi. He is thus the grandson of Brahmadev, ie Raja-gun. Kashyap is a Sanskrit word which essentially is the energy which makes visible or makes something brilliant. Aditi is literally the energy of manifestation, heaven and earth, speech, inexhaustible creative power, perfection, boundlessness, freedom, happiness, completion etc. So Indra is essentially the visible brilliance of the boundless power of manifested creation, which is in motion and is also capable of causing movement.

Aditi and Kashyap have 33 sons, ie the 33 koti Devata-s which exist within all of us. They are Indra, Prajapati, the 8 Vasu, the 11 Rudra and the 12 Aditya. (These are all within you, do click on these links to read about them)

Indra is married to Sachi. Sachi-pati is his name. Pati is the catalyst energy which acts on another substance and causes it to change. The word Sachi has several meanings like speech, skills, activity etc but it is also another name for Vak, Prajnya, Karma. This means that the power of the individual soul/ Jiv-atma enters the substance of Vak, Prajnya and Karma and causes changes in them, leading to further creation. Indra is more esoteric than people today realise.

Indra is the destroyer of several Asur forces including Vala, Panis, Namuchi, Shushna, Sambhara, Himarina, Vrittasur etc. He released Sapta-sindhu, released the Go, created the Agni etc. All these allegories are full of esoteric meanings. I will just briefly write on the esoteric theme of the killing of  Vrittasur, you can explore the other allegories on your own if you feel inclined. This is from the Rg ved, 1.80.1-16.

Our minds are very low in consciousness, the several ideas, thoughts, desires, wishes which stir up the serenity of the mind are called Vritti. These Vritti cause turbulence, these are the barriers to self-realisation. Only when the mind becomes still, does the light of the Self dawn. Indra uses his weapon Vajra to kill Vrittasur. This in the esoteric sense means that when you have Indra on your side in your spiritual practice, you put a stop to the waves of disturbance rising in your mind. These waves are Asur, discordant. They stop you from your spiritual practice, cause distress, pain and keep you at a low levels of awareness. When Indra kills Vritasur, the spiritual aspirant starts resonating with OM.


Indra is the only deity who carries a Vajra in his hands. I read about Tibetan Vajrayana and was surprised to note that it is also called Mantrayan, ‘the travel of the Mantra’. One of the major deities of Vajrayana is Vajrasatva, he carries the Vajra and a bell in his hands. The Vajra is used to destroy the turbulence of the mind and the bell with its resonating sound of Om creates the resonance of Om in the aspirant. The Tibetan Vajrayana is deeply connected to Sanatan dharma, especially its practical Tantra/ Mantra/ Yantra aspect.

Now Indra’s weapon, the Vajra. It actually looks like a dumb-bell shaped object, about as big as can be gripped comfortably. It is said to create thunderbolts, which is accurate. Vajra was created by Vishvakarma from the Asti of the body of the enlightened MahaRishi Dadhyang specifically for Indra’s war with Vrittasur. The MahaRishi ‘donated’ his body, specifically his head, as a weapon fashioned only from its Asti could kill Vritasur. The fire of his Tapasya had made his Asti/ essence intensely powerful so if used as a weapon could easily destroy Vrittasur. And there is a proper definition for Vajra, ‘tapovya sa vajra asit’. ie Vajra is the essence, the fire of Tapasya, the radiance emitted when you perform intense spiritual practice. It is the thunderbolt flash of the ascending Kundalini. And Tapa in its essence is the discarding of vasana/ desires which is precisely what killing of Vrittasur implies.

There are endless allegories linked to Indra and his exploits. If you wish you can read them and try to glean their hidden meaning for yourself.

But one thing is true, you become aware of the internal Indra, when you perform your regular spiritual practice, by the blessings of the Param-atma. As per the allegories if you perform 100 Ashvamedh yadnyas you attain the title of Indra. Here Indra is the Vedic Indra, the hero Indra. If you are still at the Puranic or even lower stages of evolution you have to perform 100 Ashva-medh yajnyas to reach this level. Then there is a very confused concept of Ashva-medh going around these days. No one sacrificed horses! In Sanatan Dharma you can never never kill another living thing as a sacrifice, if you do you will create horrendous karma for yourself. Ashva is literally the external and the internal Sun. Medh means ‘essence’. So to first realise the essence of internal Sun, you have to work /act /perform yajnya, ie your regular sustained spiritual practice over several lives consistently.

Understanding and experiencing yourself as Indra is a very significant step in your spiritual practice. Every deity in Sanatan Dharma is there for a specific reason, there are no superstitions in Dharma.

Judge a true Ascetic from the horoscope

I had to write this post as a response to an adverse comment on Indra. Disparaging Indra means disparaging your individual soul, your own jiv-atma. Who are you now? Indra, the Jiv-atma. What do you want to experience? Advaita, the Param-Atman. This is the secret of all spiritual practice.

Power of your 5th house and Mantra Siddhi

I got this question from someone that if the route to the Self is as simple as sitting in one place and mentally reciting Soham 108 times with 108 breaths then why doesn’t everyone immediately gain Moksh?

There are several answers to this question. From karma balance from past lives to regular practice to the final deciding blessings of the Parmeshwar. But as this is an astrology post let’s check out some the astrological combinations which lead to Mantra Siddhi.

Mantra is a Sanskrit word which has several meanings, it is a secret knowledge, secret advise, a consultation, something which trains the mind, cleans the mind, stabilises/anchors the mind, gives you what you desire, etc. I have written about the 6 types of mantra here. Soham also obviously is a Mantra but a class apart as it is an Ajapa Mantra. And when you achieve Siddhi over the Soham Mantra you will gain the Self.

If you do a particular Using the Akshar, Mantra and Sanskrit Sadhana or do its Tapa, you will achieve a particular objective. eg Reciting a mantra again and again produces Taposiddhi. Then each mantra has is own speciality. Eg you cannot use a vidveshana mantra for ucchatan. And every mantra Sadhana has a specific procedure which has to be followed, if you make errors here, you can mess up with your internal energy and suffer. But if done properly you will gain Tapo-Siddhi/ Mantra-siddhi ie your Sadhana or Tapa will give the desired result. Mantra Siddhi means that you have achieved complete control over the mantra and now can use it in the way it was intended consciously. This also means that you can be considered as a ‘Guru’ for that mantra and you can give initiation/ diksha of this mantra to others.

For a mantra to be successful ie siddh, first you need to have got it/diksha from a Guru who has achieved Siddhi over it and follow his directions, pray to the presiding deity of that mantra and get the blessings. Second, you should have a powerful and auspicious Dharma trikon. And third, the 5th house, its occupants and its lord have to be capable of beneficial results. Only then can you achieve Mantra siddhi in your current life.

The 5th house is the house of the Mantra. Some of these are with you from your past lives. All the hard work you do today on your Soham is going to be always a part of you and will be reflected in the 5th house of your future birth’s charts. Soham Sadhana is also called Sushumna Yog and is never completely destroyed by death. Whatever you have done, till whatever level you had reached before physical death, is carried onwards with you.

This also means that the 5th house is linked to your poorva-janma-punya, the auspicious actions which you had performed in your past lives. That’s the precise reason why the ascendant lord in the 5th house is considered to be a type of Raj-yog. This combination gives the current personality a direct link to the fruits of the sadhanas of the past lives. You can consciously use these assets for your benefit now. The 9th house is slightly different as it is not in your conscious control, you receive your punya as divine blessings or luck in the 9th house.

Wherever the 5th lord is located in your chart is also significant as you can use your poorva-janma-punya to achieve things connected to that house too. But this ability to consciously tap into the 5th house will depend on the power of the 1st house, ie your personality and the 9th house, the divine blessings. So overall a strong Dharma trikon is necessary.

Look for these indicators in the horoscope to know if you can make your Mantra-s siddh. More the patterns seen, more powerful the results. 

  • If the 5th lord is exalted in the birth chart and further aspected by benefics.
  • If the ascendant lord is placed in the 5th house.
  • If the 5th and 9th lord are both powerful and in some auspicious yog with each other.
  • The three owners of the 1st 5th 9th houses are placed in only these three houses.
  • Check the strengths Shad-bala Vimshopaka of the 1st, 5th and 9th lords. They should be strong and capable of auspicious results. .
  • And if you are an advanced student, open the divisional charts/DC. You have to locate the ruler of the 5th house in each of the 10 DC which make up the Dasha varga (post here). Check in how many DC the 5th lord is shifting to a sign he owns or his sign of exaltation or his mool-trikon sign or stays vargottam. The more deep are the roots of his power in the DC, the more power he gets to grant you Mantra siddhi.

psychologically ast

I had mentioned this earlier, once you start your Sadhana in earnest, you should avoid looking directly into other people’s eyes. You might accidentally hypnotise the other person. Best look at his nose or mouth instead. Or if you are angry you can cause him harm in several ways. And then it would be a negative karma for you too. A Sadhak’s anger is always fuelled by his tapo-siddhi.

eg. There is this incident from the Mahabharat. The Pandav-s had lost the game of dice. Of the 5 brothers, 4 were sitting with their eyes lowered. Only Bhim was looking straight at the Kaurav assembly. The other 4 Pandav-s were not scared or humiliated. They had lowered their eyes because if they would look up directly, the anger in their eyes would burn the entire assembly. Bhim was the son of Vayu, ie he was the only one who had his Pran and Nadi network in his full control. So due to this tremendous control on himself, he was able to look at the others without harming them. All the 5-Pandavs and their 100-Kaurav cousins were Sadhak-s of the highest levels and had mastery over several mantras etc. But at that point of time, the rage of the Pandav-s was fuelled by their Tapo-siddhi as well as Dharma was on their side, making their gaze more potent.

Back to the chart. If you are a Sadhak, there is one particular time where you must remain alert. Whenever Saturn in transit, enters the house counted 5th from the birth Moon, your power of judgement will fail. However intelligent you ordinarily may be or however powerful the rest of the chart may be. During this period you will face obstacles to your mantra-sadhana. Also avoid using your siddh-mantras in this transit period as you will invariably commit some error in the process.

The 5th house is again very important as it also indicates your sanchit karma. (The store house of karma that you have with you is called sanchit karma. The small portion from this which you are enduring/enjoying in this life is called prarabdha karma. The karma which you will create in this life and which will be added to your prarabdha or sanchit is called the agaami karma). If your 9th house lord and 5th house lord are in some powerful mutual combination/ yog or connected in some way, then you can do this. You can alter your karma of the 5th house by the divine blessings of the 9th house. Eg if in this life you are unable to get something because of the planetary combinations and if you have this rare 9th and 5th house lord’s connect then you can ‘borrow’ this ability from your sanchit karma if you have it there. Or if you realise that in this life you are going to die a horrible death you can postpone this prarabdha to a future life. This is also a part of mantra-siddhi (5th house item) and requires blessings from the Para-Brahma (9th house item). For the rare few who have this blessing, this event will happen in dasha and antar-dasha periods related to the 1st 5th 9th lords. And the exact timing will be when Jupiter or the Yogkarak planet for the chart just resumes his direct motion after being retrograde.

This is also a reason why I was stressing in an earlier post that this period till 20th Nov is going to give significant opportunities to some of us. Recently Jupiter turned direct. Today Saturn has come out of retrogression. Mars will go direct on 14th Nov. These are very significant times.

Sometimes predictions do fail

No astrologer can give 100% perfect predictions all the time. If someone claims to do so, it is not possible on the basis of the mathematical analysis of the birth time. Some things are always in the hands of the creator and the free will of the client.

Often there is the so-called Nadi practitioner who will tell your past perfectly but cannot predict your future accurately. Most likely he has a minor ‘siddhi’ or a bound spirit who tells him things. I saw this once when one of my friends dragged me to check out a new  ‘palm-leaf nadi astrologer’, there was a spirit involved and this is quite a common ‘trick’.

Then I knew a very senior astrologer, quite well known, over 75yrs of age. He would predict what his clients wished to hear, the potential/ timing of the horoscope was secondary. And because what they wanted was relatively usual stuff, in most of the cases it would actually happen. When my brother realised what was happening, he tested him on purpose. He would sit before him for a consultation and think of wild stuff which could not possibly happen as per his horoscope. The astrologer would predict what my brother was wishing would happen. And the prediction would not materialise. What was happening here was very typical. The astrologer was a life-time devotee of the Gayatri mantra and he had developed a type of vak-siddhi over the years. This meant that he could read minds, also speak what the client wished to hear and for minor things the power of his siddhi would nudge things along towards the desired outcome. So his predictions were a mix of horoscope, experience and Gayatri-siddhi.

Then there are genuine Jyotishi-s who have done so much spiritual sadhana in their life that they don’t even need to use horoscopes anymore. They are the real ‘Daivadnya’, the ‘knowers of destiny’. They have used Jyotish more as a Vedang, a spiritual tool rather than just a tool for common prediction. But these are quite rare.


For most of us who visit professional astrologers, there will always be some inaccuracy in readings. Every practicing astrologer will make errors from time to time. The main reasons are these,

Birth details.

This is a basic problem. eg even 1 min off the actual birth time will put off the timing of the predictions by 3 months when using the Dasha systems. And the birth chart and divisional charts will misguide. And pin-point predictions are going to be difficult. Birth time rectification requires time and experience.


This is a value which essentially measures the Sun’s movement against the backdrop of the stars (it is rather complicated). Major astrologers develop their own ayanamsha factor eg BV Raman had calculated a new ayanamsha which several senior astrologers of that time did not agree with. I use the Chitrapaksha ayanamsha also called the Lahiri ayanamsha, this is the ayanamsha used in calculating the Indian official calendar. So in your software or if you are doing the calculations manually, use the Chitrapaksha-Lahiri and later when you have more practice and if you want to experiment, try with the others. (The authors whom I hold in high esteem, KN Rao, CS Patel, Shakti Mohan Singh etc all use the Lahiri-Chitrapaksha)

Dasha analysis.

All astrologers will be taught Vimshottari dasha system first. It is most commonly used and quite accurate. But there are several other dasha systems. And there are rules on which one is to be used for what kind of birth. Or for what type of question eg the Shoola Dasha system is used to precisely time death. Vimshottari is the basic minimum, but a professional astrologer will know at least 3-4 dasha systems. Yogini or the Kaalchakra dasha is an all-applicable Dasha system. Knowing which Dasha system to use for which kind of birth details and for what kind of question will improve the accuracy of prediction.

(If you are a student of astrology, read the book ‘Kaala chakra Dasha system’ by Shakti Mohan Singh. At least do the maths and get your own dasha sequence. Tally it with your life and see for yourself. Doing this for clients can be difficult as the exact birth minute is essential. I don’t know if there is a software which calculates this Dasha accurately, I do the calculations manually as per this book.) 

Professional astrologers.

Most astrologers are here for the money. They do not have the time nor the inclination to get into the real details. They want you as a repeat client, to get dependant on them or every small decision in life. Then all the Jyotish books are in Sanskrit (Devbhasha Samskrutam) our mother-tongue, which we do not understand and then to interpret what is written is a big task. People have forgotten that it is actually Vedang Jyotish. Before going to an astrologer always try to find out more about him, from his other clients or from the books/papers he has published. There are genuine astrologers still available who take the time to read charts as they are supposed to be read. If you search, you will find them.

Verifying the life-details and the birth-charts.

The basic birth chart is calculated as per the client’s birth-time, also the Ashtakvarga table and the Navamsha charts too. Now all this math has to be tallied with the past events. It is the responsibility of the client to give the correct birth time but it is the responsibility of the astrologer to cross-check. Unless the birth time is established beyond doubt, predicting the future is going to be difficult. For this any of the following have to be tallied with the charts,

  • Events linked to the slow moving planets, Saturn Rahu/ Ketu and Jupiter transits help in verifying birth details. If any Saturn Sade-sati has occurred, its effects are good markers. Dasha will also give timing of life events.
  • Life events like, birth of younger brother/ sisters, deaths of parents/ grandparents/ spouse/ children, education and profession related milestones, marriage, divorce, birth of children, accidents, illnesses, purchase of house/ car/ property etc will be reflected in the charts.
  • These incidents are physical, psychological and spiritual events. Eg someone might have felt terrible pain on the birth of a younger brother, might have felt lost, that his parents have a new baby. This is a major impact on his outlook and will be strongly reflected in his charts.
  • The present life situation will fit into the current Dasha and the current transits situation. eg if someone just got a new job it will be reflected here.

And a good astrologer will predict one past event from the past using the chart, just to verify if it really happened. Only after this the future Dasha and transits are evaluated for predictions. Software will help but the astrologer has to give time for every chart analysis and the client too should be patient till the astrologer has finished his calculations.

Prashna Kundali

If the client has only one pressing question, the Prashna system always gives accurate results. Every astrologer should know the basics of Prashna analysis. Even if the client has his birth details always check the prashna kundali.

Prashna is also a look into how the energies of the present moment are going to influence the reading. Also when an astrologer is aware of that instant’s planetary configuration, he also knows how the planets are influencing him and his ability. If he is going through a bad patch himself, if his own perceptions are coloured, his ability to read will be affected.

Accepting mistakes and studying even more

Every astrologer has made mistakes. If he can accept them, re-examine and learn it will help further growth. But too many or silly mistakes cannot be tolerated. People want solutions and if the astrologer is wrong, he is cheating the client and also himself. Learning astrology systematically and getting experience in informal settings is important.

If you want learn astrology, be systematic and not let your ego get the better of you. If you want to be a professional astrologer first go through your own chart, check if you have the aptitude and the ability. There is no glamour in this, you will often see people in such horrid circles that you yourself can lose faith.

And if you are the client, the astrologer does not know everything, if he predicts wild things or you feel something is fishy, do not follow his advice. In our greed we often ignore our inner voice and get into a mess later.

Finally when some predictions fail, it is the failure of the astrologer and not Jyotish.

Education in the horoscope

The performer, catalyst and Creator

Hinduism/ Sanatan Dharma has very deep statements which cannot be understood but need to be experienced. My Guru would talk about things and we all used to listen. But it is only with practice that some of his statements are making more sense now.

There is only one origin called the ‘Nirvishesh Brahma’, the ‘intelligence where differentiation does not exist’ or Parabrahma, the ‘beyond intelligence’. This is the goal of each soul, your and my personal spiritual evolution leads here. This is the Ultimate Creator.

The first creation was duality, ie observer-performer energy was created. The Para creates infinite numbers of observer-performer pairs. The observer energy is called the Purush and the performer energy is called the Prakruti. Prakruti is said to be feminine as the energies are active, kinetic, capable of responding, changeable. Purush is said to be masculine as these energies are still and unchanging but are capable of eliciting a response. (The Purush and Prakruti are not a physical man and a woman, there is no sexism in the spiritual context.)

Only Advaita as discussed by Adi Shankaracharya is subtle and deep enough to pierce through all duality. It can take you upto the Real Creator, the Parabrahma. Advaita is referred to as ‘Non-duality’. It can be only expressed as a negation as what it really is cannot be described in the words of this creation, it needs to be experienced. This is the Reality which you and me actually desire to experience. Sankhya-shastra is a method analysing intelligence, energy, matter and the rest of it. This is a discriminative, rational, calculative and deliberate instrument directed to the understanding the Self. Sankhya is a prelude to the understanding of the Advaita.

The Prakruti is called Lalita, the one who plays the game. This game is of her devising, created out of her own energies, occurs within her and is not separate from her. The entire performance occurs within the energies of the performer. All creation theories or even modern science describe this Game that she plays, the secondary creation of the manifested Universes. These theories are limited to only Prakruti and the processes that go on with her body. These do not describe the Purush as they have not reached so deep within. And neither do they take you upto your reality, ie the Parabrahma.

Exalted and debilitated, Rahu, Ketu and Saturn

In my earlier posts, I have written about Prakruti and her active role in creating, maintaining, evolving and finally destroying the manifested. Whatever you see around you, your body, mind, environment, etc is all Prakruti. Now there is one twist here. Prakruti is described as being ‘Jada’ जड. She is without animation, insensate, still,  lifeless, paralysed, numb, dull, stunned, cold, apathetic as Jada means ‘matter without Intelligence’. She is capable of motion but incapable of initiating the motion herself. She does not have the intelligence or the consciousness. So why does the Prakruti start her performance?  What caused her to move, to start Playing?

The reason is the catalyst, the Purush.

The Purush has a very important role in all this Play. The Purush is called the ’Sakshi’ in Sanskrit. This word is usually translated to mean a witness or an observer. This is slightly incorrect as Devbhasha Samskrutam is a palimpsest, the deeper you go the more meanings you understand. Sakshi is a compound word ‘Akshasya sah’. Sakshi is the ‘intelligence which accompanies the Axis on which the individual soul exists’. Or the ‘self-awareness of the Pivot of the wheel of creation’.

Purush is Aware Intelligence.

The Purush is the catalyst. He, by his mere presence causes the Prakruti to start her performance. But the Purush does not interact with any other energy or get involved in any way. Purush is the ever-existing, steady, ever-pervading Intelligence. He doesn’t change and neither does he interfere. Manifested creation happens just because he exists. His existence is the reason why Prakruti goes about creating.

There are catalysts in every system, eg enzymes are catalysts in biology, they bring about all the cellular life processes but remain unchanged and unaffected. In chemistry, the neutrons are Sakshi, they do not participate but their presence makes things happen, eg electrons are captured by protons and chemical reactions take place. It is the same with the creation, Prakruti performs just because the Purush is there. Matter moves just because of the presence of the Purush.

In our usual life we all are actors, we perform. A very simplistic example, I interact with my son. I get cross and tell him to clean his room, he is irritated but cleans it. Both of us have changed. I was irritated, now I am satisfied. He was irritated, now he is tired. And a new reality has come to being, the room is clean. So two energies interacted and changed themselves and also changed the environment. This has happened within the realm of Prakruti. Emotions, physical realities which are capable of being changed are part of Prakruti and occur within her body.

Now if you look around you, there are also catalysts/ sakshi everywhere. These Sakshi do not engage with anyone else nor do they change, but events occur around them because of their mere presence. A very simplistic example again, I am at home just sitting and reading, my son comes home and because I am sitting there, carefully removes his shoes and puts them on the rack. I didn’t even look at him. But my mere presence, the catalyst, made him ‘perform’.

My Guru would say that I must bring in the ’Sakshi-bhaav’ into myself, ie bring into myself the reality of the Sakshi. He was telling me to be the unchanging center around which the whirl of creation unfolds. To change my perception from the ‘matter’ component to the ‘intelligence’ component. But how do I bring in this ‘consciousness’ within me? How can I stop being involved in ‘matter’. All my senses, my organs of action are oriented towards matter. I smell, taste, touch, move.. matter. I perceive only matter whirling around me.

The solution is to do Dhyan, when you sit still and focus only at your Ajnya chakra you are focussing on your personal consciousness. The Ajnya chakra is the seat of the individual consciousness. Once you identify with the fragment of the Ultimate consciousness within you rather than the matter swirling around you, your evolution gets easier.

Route from the Ajnya chakra to the Sahasrara and the Bindu within the Sahasrara gets easier. This is real evolution.

But when you are just starting your spiritual practice you cannot experience or imagine or visualise or even think of such subtle energies. So you start the ‘observe yourself’ thingie again by observing whatever is visible at your third eye during Dhyan. Dispassionately, you close your eyes and focus at your third eye. In the physical body, you, the individual consciousness, reside at the third eye Ajnya chakra. You start your practice of observing yourself from this chakra. Initially you see just darkness here. As your practice deepens you will observe yourself in all your increasing higher energy levels.

You have to traverse a distance of ’10 fingers’ from the third eye chakra to the top of the head. All this practice for this seemingly tiny thing!

The Sakshi is the pivot, the axis around which change occurs. The Sakshi is essential for evolution. Matter by itself cannot move. Intelligence makes it move, evolve. Consciousness is steady, it does not change, it remains constant, it is. This principle is applicable everywhere, from biology, chemistry to spiritual evolution. When you become your own catalyst, you further your own spiritual evolution.


More on Eclipses and their astrological results

Rahu and karmic relationships

Matching charts for marriage is a routine job for an Indian astrologer. There are several rules prescribed for matching charts for a successful marriage. If the astrologer is good, he will also give an overview of the two charts seen together, a snapshot of what their life together can be like. Everyone brings in their own karma into relationships, and karma is best defined by Rahu/Ketu. I always consider Rahu- Ketu to be very valuable indicators in a chart. Even if the client has no specific questions regarding these, they should be analysed. They tell you where the subconscious is directed, pulled by the ‘desire to experience’ energy of Rahu and pushed by the ‘apathetic to experience’ energy of Ketu. Karmic relationships are those which are carried on from past lives and are more focussed on completing the unfinished karma. Relationships which are linked by Rahu are quite powerful, they are forward-oriented and focussed on growth potential. Rahu indicates karma linked to the present and the future you look forward to. A Rahu linked relationship offers a chance to both for growing and learning together in this lifetime. Also an opportunity to accomplish the work together which perhaps either could not complete alone in this life.

Rahu and karmic relationships

Pull out your and your best friend’s chart for this mini exercise. This ‘friend’, would be someone close to you, with whom you have the most intense relationship in terms of ‘experience’. Your brother/sister, parent, husband/wife, child, best friend etc. This is how you go about it,

  • e.g. If your Rahu is in your 3rd house and your friend’s Venus is his 3rd house, the 3rd house matters will usually be the focus of your relationship together. Matters of the 3rd house will be lucky for both as long as the relationship lasts.
  • You can check out the signs too, if your Rahu is in Aries and his Mercury is in Aries, both will benefit from Aries-related matters. But this effect will be less intense as compared to the houses as above.
  • Generally the matters of the other planet will be in focus in the relationship together.
  • The one whose Rahu is involved benefits from the planet of the other. This other planet provides direction and guidance to the Rahu. And Rahu provides his energy and the thirst for experience to the other planet.

Rahu – Sun

This is a very deep connect and can last a life-time. Rahu amplifies the Sun’s powers which can be good for both. The Rahu-friend gives the power, strength, desire, luck and optimism for the future. The Sun-friend gives inspiration, self-confidence, creativity, healthy sense of self-ego and leadership. The Sun-person will drive the relationship, i.e. decide the common goals that the two will pursue together. However both will have to ensure that this does not create ego problems. There may be an undercurrent of ‘father’ or ‘mentor’ type of feelings between the two.

Rahu – Moon

An emotional connect between two people which can last a life time. The Rahu-person amplifies the Moon associated qualities of the Moon-person. The relationship is more nurturing and ‘feelings’ dominate. The Rahu – person provides support of the outgoing type, physical protection etc and receives emotional nurturing from the Moon-person. Both should take care that the relationship doesn’t turn into ‘needy love’, it might then convert into a mother-child type of relationship. The Moon is the sum of your existence and Rahu is an astral force, so this relationship can be quite intense and both may remember past life incidents from their common lives.

Rahu – Mars

This is a very intense connect which can go both ways. Initially the two attract each other with their outgoing natures, high energy activities and even enjoy arguing with each other. But with time, disagreements and conflicts will increase, thus this does not make for a long term success. This relationship will be very exciting, dynamic and at times challenging. There is abundant energy, luck, desire and cooperative spirit, together against the world. They can be good in technology or brotherhood type of activities together. The Mars-friend needs to be careful about his self-ego and not hurt the Rahu-friend’s self-ego in this relationship. Also might manifest into to a on-off type of relation where both are often separated and then meet up for short intense periods.

Rahu and karmic relationships

Rahu – Mercury

This combination is quite good for long term relationship. Rahu will amplify Mercury-activities, communications, team-spirit, playing, being together etc. Both will support each other in their hobbies, interests, learning skills etc. Talking on the phone always, messaging and being in touch, both might share the same tastes and have common interests. Both find it very easy to relate to each other, laughing at the same jokes. Best friends who can complete each other’s sentences! This connect is the best possible for ‘best-buddies’ or even a successful business partner duo. Mercury is quite intricately connected to ‘desire, his Gemini is the first 1/3rd of the Kama trikon. So Rahu-Mercury can give a very successful relationship on whichever level it manifests.

Rahu – Jupiter

This is a good combination of two grahas who apparently seem to be opposite in nature. Both share hopes, higher learning and wisdom. Rahu provides the drive and Jupiter the benevolence. These two can grow with each other long-term. Both may have different view-points but in the background they both think on similar lines. This is a combination of ‘desire to experience’ and the ‘ability to philosophise’, thus together they make a great deal of sense. This connect supports both material, philosophical and spiritual growth. If these two people meet when they are older/more mature they might be better able to support each other. Experience and wisdom both balance better with age.

Rahu – Venus

This is a good connection and tends to grow deeper with time. There is scope for romance and also respect for each other. The Venus-person will give his wisdom/ love/ ‘relationship-glue’ depending on the level he is operating. The Rahu-person will protect, provide the luck, the fierceness and the common direction in their lives. This is one combination where Rahu actually feels responsible. Depending on the house in which this is happening this can lead to romance, physical relationships, marriage and other common relationship interests. ‘Attraction’ is the word around which this connection will evolve. And then the secret, there is enormous potential here, of esoteric wisdom and growth in metaphysical/ occult. Venus is not the ‘planet of love’, he is Daityaguru Shukracharya, with all the knowledge and seriousness that goes with it. The strictest Teacher of the most difficult students. And Rahu is a Daitya. So Shukracharya is Rahu’s Guru! There will always be an undercurrent of teaching and learning in this relationship. (I know two friends with this combination, they have tantric abilities way beyond their ages.)

Rahu – Saturn 

This connect can get difficult because Saturn is restriction, discipline and constriction. If Rahu amplifies all this Saturn stuff, it can create issues and the relationship might remain a short lived one. However if the house in which this is happening is a suitable environment for Saturn-Rahu then it might work wonders. e.g this can work nicely in the 3rd (personal courage), 6th (service and sufferings), 8th (death and catastrophic transformations), 11th (gains) house energies. This is quite a serious connection overall, Saturn-person helps the Rahu-person in various material ways, e.g. by systemically organising things for him in profession and work. The Rahu helps the Saturn by bringing in ‘luck’, to find legitimate short-cuts etc,innovative ways to to reduce his work load. But a Rahu-Saturn background is always serious. It is a good connection for non-personal relationships, distant relationships, group activity type of interests etc.

Rahu and karmic relationships

Rahu – Rahu

Both friends are very similar in what they desire in this life. Both want the same sort of experiences, Rahu in the same house (or sign) in each’s chart, will ensure that both are attracted to similar things. Both thus have a very deep understanding of each other’s deepest motivations and inclinations. Then Ketu-Ketu will also exist as Rahu-Ketu are 180 degrees apart. So both have similar past experiences and learning from them. This is a good combination for companionship and friendship. The only possibility where Rahu-Rahu connect can lead to a conflict is if both want the actual same thing/object/person rather than the experience. Then this can get ugly with no limits on what each can do to the other!

Rahu – Ketu

This is very good for companionship in the real sense and is usually a life-time connect, growing deeper with time. A connect of two opposites who are actually One. This gives each an understanding of the other which can neither be articulated not understood completely, just experienced. There is genuine sympathy, affection and each appreciates the other’s life path intensely. The simplest reason is this, the Ketu-friend knows at the deepest levels what the Rahu-friend is going through at present, and will go through in the future. The Rahu’s present/future is Ketu’s past experience. And vice-versa! Both are astral graha, complete when with each other. Thus the two friends feel the other as the missing-link which completes each at the deepest level. But this will also lead to several misunderstandings on the material levels as they are both motivated and apathetic to exactly opposite things. It will take some time and effort to sort out things, but once they do it will be a very complete experience. (I know a couple of friends, with a Rahu-Ketu linkage in the birth chart and the same combination in their divisional chart-9, navamsha chart also. Unbelievably linked on all levels.)

So this was just a frame work on which the Rahu-linked synastry relationship will evolve. The finer details will depend a great deal on the house in which this combination is happening. Also keep the social and cultural background in mind. Rahu does not mean that the two will break out of the socio-cultural norms and engage in aberrant behaviour. These are mental and psychological patterns you are analysing. And, since it is Rahu involved, they will always be significant, ‘the desire for experience’. If you have someone in your life with such a Rahu – synastry, analyse your this relationship in great details. It will help you understand your own self better.

Rahu and karmic relationships