True nodes stationary during eclipses

There are two chhaya-graha/ astral planets, Rahu and Ketu. There is a mathematical oddity which is which needs to be considered before we analyse them. These two are the two points where the orbit of the Moon cuts the ecliptic. They represent the influence of the Earth on the individual. They are the mathematical relationship between the Sun, Moon and the Earth. They are mathematical points and move with time and in space.

The nodes are generally an averaged calculation, thus are called ‘mean nodes’. Mean nodes are always in retrograde motion. ie They move in the direction opposite to the direction travelled by the Sun/Moon. Their speed can change, they get slower or faster, but they are always retrograde. Their retrograde movement slows down during every eclipse. And twice a year their speed slows down to such an extent that they seem almost stationary at one degree of the zodiac.

Then there is the mathematical calculation which gives ‘true nodes’. Now if the calculations were not averaged and if their positions are calculated for a specific time, then they would be referred to as ‘True nodes’. These true nodes move in retrograde  motion generally but can move in forward motion only around major eclipses or during a cluster of back-to-back eclipses. And their forward motion is generally quite slow. That means that during these sensitive periods around eclipses, the true nodes move in the same direction as the Sun/Moon’s direction of movement.

I use true nodes while seeing charts. There is a distinct difference in people born with true nodes in forward motion and in retrograde motion. Especially so if the question is related to spiritual, astral or occult stuff or a prashna or connected to sudden rise/ fall in life or extreme events.

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The nodes are especially important as they define the flow of our life-experience through several lives. They mature late so we are aware of their role in our lives only after the late 40s.

  • Rahu is the desire which we have ignored for the past several lives and now its become so urgent that it is our this life’s focus. He indicates qualities which need to be developed so as to achieve our karmic targets. He demands that his target for experience be met asap. His challenge is to consciously be aware when the targets have been achieved and to stop.
  • Ketu is the experience which we have had to our fill in our past lives and in this present life holds no novelty for us. We have with us the deepest lessons related to those experiences deep in our sub-conscious. We use these lessons as our fail-safe but we are unaware of them in our conscious life. The challenge is to become aware of them and then use them consciously.

Rahu and Ketu generally move in the direction opposite to the Sun and Moon, ie are retrograde. Their energies move in the direction opposite to the energies of the luminaries. Most of us have true nodes retrograde in our charts. Their this retrograde motion indicates that there is still a significant desire for enjoying stuff related to the manifested creation.

If you remember, Sun is linked to the Sahasrara chakra and Moon to the Ajnya chakra. Rahu and Ketu are not linked to any chakra because these are the forces which destabilise the perfection of the chakra geometry. But if you use their energy consciously to ‘churn’ the geometry you can set it back to its perfect alignment which is the Moksh. (This is the theme of the story-allegory of the Samudra manthan).

But for about 10% of us, the true nodes will be direct in the birth chart. If, in your birth chart, you have the true nodes direct, they indicate that a fair share of the accumulated karma has been rebalanced. The lessons of the past lives are less burdensome. And the drive towards the internal illumination is more. The nodes are moving the same direction as the Sun/Moon. The flow of the desire to experience is in the same direction as the luminaries. There is very high scope for further and fast spiritual growth in this life.

Here you will try to complete your karmic burden in this life itself. However a typical thing is that life upto the late 40’s goes in a haze, things become more clear only after Rahu/ Ketu mature. The personality is dynamic, but not deeply interested in anything. You might be well off, with a good job, family, children etc but these things seem hollow. You are not unhappy, it is not a depressive thing, but you are not focused on these material achievements. If you understand that your inclination is towards the inner worlds and you start your spiritual practice, you will feel more ‘alive’ while doing it. You are capable of working towards your spiritual goals with a single-minded focus.

If you have your true nodes direct in your birth chart, you will have been born around eclipses. The huge energy linked to that eclipse will be available to you as per your birth chart. And coupled to this the slowly moving or even apparently stationary True Nodes. If by by chance your Rahu Ketu position is poised to give auspicious results you should use them proactively. You should try to do some spiritual practices during every eclipse that you see in life. And during these periods in life when the true nodes go direct pay more attention to your dreams, visions and spiritual experiences.

Now even if you do not have Rahu/ Ketu in direct/ forward motion in your chart, do look out for these periods in transit. The planets give their results as per their speed and their direction of motion always. The nodes slow down and change their direction, go forward, there are eclipses and then they again go slow, turn around and resume their normal retrograde motion. This event happens generally twice a year, about six months apart. It is a massive potential, concentrated at a specific degree of the zodiac and it will release a huge amount of energy here. This is a highly magnifying effect on these degrees of the Zodiac. It is during this period that Rahu/Ketu have great powers to create events which have far reaching consequences. Thus they will power the actual eclipse event too. If this is happening in a sensitive house of your birth chart or over an important planet in your birth chart, there will be some important event during this period which will change your perceptions and your outlook in a very fundamental manner.

In this current time, from 29th Nov 2019 to 22nd Jan 2020, for almost 2 months, the true nodes are in forward motion and are moving extremely slowly, practically stationary. Rahu will remain in the 14th deg of Gemini during this entire period. And Ketu will remain in the 14th deg Sagittarius during this entire period. The Gemini – Sagittarius axis is already under severe stress with Ketu, Rahu, Saturn, Juipter, Venus and Mercury/Sun will be joining them soon. Moon will do his routine transits so will pop in and out. The energies are intense.

If you have your rising degree around these degrees or any of your planets at birth around these degrees or even in Gemini and Sagittarius sign, you might see some typical events connected to them. During this period there is to be a major total Solar eclipse on 26th Dec 2019 and a partial Lunar eclipse on 10th Jan 2020. Both these eclipses will be visible in the eastern hemisphere and more importantly will pass over India. There will be an extended negative impact on India and other nations of the eastern hemisphere where the eclipse falls. There will also be a negative impact on the oceans which lie in the path of these eclipses. So for all those who live in India or in some place where these eclipses are to cross over, use they energies. Channelise them so that they are productive, else such a big burst of energy can often cause problems.

So in short, use true nodes instead of mean nodes in your calculations. Especially if you have true nodes direct at birth you have a one-up in this life. And most importantly for everyone, use every time period where the true nodes go in forward motion in transit around eclipses.

 

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Understanding combustion of planets

Sun is a natural malefic, his energies scorch and dry out. Being too close to this ball of fire is not a pleasant experience. So if planets get too close to the Sun it is called ‘combustion’. 

  • Sun and Moon are the two luminaries of astrology. If Moon gets close to the Sun, it is the no-moon day, Amavasya with very different energies.
  • If Rahu or Ketu get too close to the Sun, it causes eclipses, so again a very different energy. These two are the two completely astral forces represented by the Nodes of the Moon also called Chhaya-graha. 
  • It is when the remaining 5 planets, the Tara-graha, Mercury, Venus, Mars, Jupiter and Saturn get too close to the Sun they are considered to be combust, burnt out and incapable of giving results.

In a birth horoscope if you see a planet is combust do pay attention to what he signifies and how is this energy of combustion going to affect the chart as a whole. 

Sun is the sense of self, self-ego, self-entitlement, all about ‘me’. He doesn’t allow anyone else to share center-stage with him. He is the King, self-referential, self-focussed, royal, not much bothered about others who are his subjects. Combustion is like an eclipse, the Sun eclipses the planet.

The Ascendant and its planetary Lord

If there are combust planets in the birth chart, their effect will last a life time. Check out which houses are owned by the combust planet, these will be adversely affected. Also check the house ruled by the Sun for atypical results.  If the ascendant lord himself is combust the situation is more difficult. Major planets combust or 2 or more planets combust can reduce the longevity. If there are benefic influences on this Sun+planet duo the situation is better. Or if the combustion happens in a house other than the 6th, 8th and 12th houses. Or if the Navamsha provides some better influence. The actual  combustion effect will naturally vary as per the individual chart. As per the Vimshottari Dasha system, the Mahadasha of the planet will not give its expected results, also his sub-periods in other planet’s Mahadashas will be affected. Sun’s Mahadasha will also be atypical as here Sun=Sun+the planet.

When a planet gets too close to the Sun, he is stopped from giving his results independently. He cannot out-shine the Sun. The Sun drowns out his energy with his effulgence. This other planet has to transfer all his essence to the Sun. The Sun dries up this planet and takes on his abilities. So the Sun in such a horoscope will be a Sun tinged with the abilities of this combust planet. Now when you examine the role of the Sun in this chart, you have to think of him as Sun+planet.

Eg Let’s check out the combustion of Mercury in detail.

Mercury being so close to the Sun will be combust in about 25% of the horoscopes. So what happens is that the Sun will draw up all the power of Mercury to give results. It is like he will evaporate Mercury’s essence. The closer he is, more intense is the evaporation. All keywords of Mercury are now appropriated by the Sun. The Sun will decide how to use them. The separate agency called “Mercury’ has stopped existing. So if you have such a Sun in your horoscope, all your Mercury related abilities will be diverted only for your selfish and self-oriented purposes. Mercury is a very important planet, the son of the Moon. Thinking ability, way of thinking, using the memories and data available in your astral self, direction of thought, skills, networking, financial ability, speech, creation of options, boldness to act, siblings, trades, etc. All this will be directed to the self. You will not bother about others while using your Mercury talents. eg You can hurt others with your speech and not be even aware of it or lying is easy if you consider it necessary for your own needs. Mercury controls teamwork, so you fail at this miserably, you cannot work in a group nor can you listen to other’s opinions. Having a good time with siblings and brothers can be impossible. Getting others to cooperate with you can be difficult and you feel that you don’t need their help. But it doesn’t work like that in real life. Everything we do, we need some help from others. The self-ego blinds the analytical processes. Over-confidence and then problems are quite common with this placement. You might waste energy in projects which are logically unable to succeed. This false sense of self-ego over-shadows the intellect. 

And strangely in the background there is low self-esteem too. The planet knows that he has been destroyed by the harshness of the Sun, so exists in a highly uncomfortable state. The Sun is a natural malefic, remember! He feels a mix of defeat, fear, debilitation, inferiority, he is sitting with a malefic and just wants to die! Thus you feel a inner sense of inferior in the matters indicated by the planet. But there is the overshadowing self-referential influence of the Sun. So this mix turns into a superficial exaggerated bravado in the matters controlled by Mercury. You internally know that all your Mercury abilities are hollow but you cannot stop yourself from projecting that you are superior in their context. It can get quite mixed.

You succeed in those aspects of life where you are required to work alone and you need the talents of Mercury. So look for such avenues to make the most of your combust Mercury + Sun power.

Be kind.. to yourself

In transit also planets will get combust, so it is advisable to pay attention to the activities of the planet under combustion. Different planets get combust at varying distances from the Sun. But especially when the distance between it and the Sun reduces to less than 3deg 20minutes arc length (ie one Nakshatra pada distance) be very careful.

So in periods where the planets are combust you will see the following trends around you. Almost everyone will display the change caused by combust planets in transit.

Mercury combust – loss of cooperation, failure of teamwork, self-ego ruining logical plans, faulty conclusions from data because of misplaced confidence, financial markets going down because of over-inflated data. Everyone thinks for him alone.

Venus combust – self-ego wants to be entertained, movies theatres games etc make a profit, failure in personal relationships as both partners become more selfish, legal issues crop up because business partners do not want to share profits equitably, spiritual progress goes slower as individual-ego pops up as you sit for Dhyan. Everyone wants to relate to his own person, do what makes him happy.

Mars combust – personal vitality comes in focus, physical aggression, competitions, rash driving, exaggerated over-confidence, strong belief in one’s competitive abilities. Everyone will fight for what he wants. However as Mars and Sun are buddies, you can make good use of this time to aggressively and competitively progress in some way or the other. However remember that aggression should be directed away from the family/husband/wife/children.

Jupiter combust – there is a crisis of belief, the self-ego dominates the philosophy, is an atheist, doesn’t believe in a higher self, fails to perform the necessary rituals and things connected to eternal religion, are self-guided, do not think that they need guidance from their peers/teachers. Everyone will follow his own personal belief.

Saturn combust – this is potentially highly problematic placement. Sun is Saturn’s father and they do not get along at all. Laziness, procrastination, misplaced belief in one’s abilities, irregular working style, luck, money and social reputation are all affected adversely. Everyone will think that their work alone is perfect.

Combustion in transit affects everyone together as a mass. So before combustion season starts its good to be aware of what is in the offing and be prepared for a over-load of Sun’s scorching energy.

There is an interesting astronomical fact here. Exact combustion is when the planet and the Sun share the exact degree. Here the inner planets, Venus and Mercury can be seen on the disc of the Sun as black dots (superior combustion) or they can disappear behind the Sun’s disc (inferior combustion). The outer planets Mars, Jupiter and Saturn can only disappear behind the Sun’s disc. Practically it does not make a significant difference in the readings.

Just remember that the planet gets absorbed in the Sun. The Sun becomes a complex Sun+planet combine. The abilities conferred by the planet don’t vanish but are used as per the direction of the Sun. So do not ignore combustion, either in birth charts or in transit, it has very significant effects on us.

 

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