Fundamental steps in beginner’s level astrology

Many of us have been to an astrologer, a palmist, a tarot reader or a fortune-teller at least once in our lifetime. It is human nature to know what occurred in the past and what the future beholds. Astrology is one of the divine tools that are available to mankind to understand the occurrences of the past, present and future. It is not meant to scare us but prepare us for the good as well as the bad times. But it is better to learn to read your own birth chart (janma kundli) than going to astrologers, because in this day and age (Kaliyug) it is very hard to find genuine astrologers. Jyotish means “to shed light” on our own behavior and emotions. When we know why we are acting in a certain way, it enables us to take control of our lives and to become a better human being. Our behavior and thought process is shaped from our actions from not just this lifetime but from several lifetimes before. This article gives you a basic idea of how to assess your own birth chart or someone else’s birth chart. The imparted information is based on Vedic astrology. There are many branches of astrology but this article focuses on Vedic astrology, which is the most popular one among astrology enthusiasts.

Firstly, visit any trusted website that generates your birth chart online. Alternatively, you can also download a software like Jagannath Hora. First check, where it says Lagna or Ascendant. This is taken to be your first house. In other words, you must start counting from your ascendant. There are twelve houses or signs in astrology – 1. Aries 2. Taurus 3. Gemini 4. Cancer 5. Leo 6. Virgo 7. Libra 8. Scorpio 9. Sagittarius 10. Capricorn 11. Aquarius 12. Pisces. This is the order in which the Kaal Purush Kundli occurs (the horoscope of time personified). Each sign is owned by a planet. Except the sun and the moon, and leaving out Rahu and Ketu, all planets own two signs. Mars owns Aries and Scorpio, Venus owns Taurus and Libra. Mercury owns Gemini and Virgo. Jupiter owns Sagittarius and Pisces. Saturn owns Capricorn and Aquarius. Moon owns Cancer and Sun owns Leo

The 12 signs and their basic characteristics are given below. Check your ascendant (lagna), in which sign it falls and also in which sign each of the 9 planets are located.

  1. Aries (Symbol – The ram/bighorn sheep) – Energetic, courageous, skillful, action-oriented, adventurous, impulsive, curios and impatient.
  2. Taurus (Symbol –Bull) – Romantic, logical, passionate, artistic, patient, decisive, stubborn and prejudiced.
  3. Gemini (Symbol – Twins) – Insightful, wise, cheerful, quick-witted, fickle and gossipy.
  4. Cancer (Symbol – Crab) – Emotional, dramatic, psychic, compassionate, imaginative, sensitive and possessive.
  5. Leo (Symbol – Lion) – Proud, loyal, charismatic, leader, arrogant, indulgent.
  6. Virgo (Symbol – Virgin Maiden) – Elegant, practical, perceptive, practical, intuitive, fussy, contemplative, isolated.
  7. Libra (Symbol – Scales) – Idealistic, judgmental, charming, argumentative, law-abiding, egoistic, hesitant, suspicious, careless.
  8. Scorpio (Symbol – Scorpion) – Mysterious, intelligent, intuitive, insightful, devoted, independent, unpredictable, complicated, lazy, obsessive.
  9. Sagittarius (Symbol – Archer) – Religious, studious, rational, lively, pious, forgetful, unapologetic.
  10. Capricorn (Symbol – Goat) – Intelligent, reliable, communicative, endearing, friendly, stubborn, isolated, suspicious.
  11. Aquarius (Symbol – Water bearer) – Unique, tolerant, calm, mystical, hard-working, thoughtful, rebellious, hasty, disobedient.
  12. Pisces (Symbol – Fish) – Conscious, highly-learned, spiritual, well-mannered, pious, detached, indecisive, unrealistic.

Then, there are also 12 houses in Vedic astrology. You have to check which planets are placed in each of the 12 houses of your own birth chart. The first house is your ascendant. This signifies all about your physical and mental framework. Who you are as a person. Your core traits, your general attitude towards life. All this is seen from the first house. Second house denotes your speech and wealth. It also gives an idea about your belongings or material possession. It also indicates your food habits. Third house deals with courage, short travels, younger siblings and short communications. Fourth house is about family, house, land property, mother, nation, property, vehicles. Fifth house is about children, especially the first child, creativity, intuition, speculation, and also your school education. It also tells about the merits that you have accumulated from previous life. Sixth house talks about enemies, debts, colleagues, diseases and pets. Seventh house is about spouse, business partnerships, and people in your life. Eighth house is about occult, mystical things, unexpected happenings, physical intimacy, in-laws, court cases and litigation. Ninth house is about teachers, preachers, Gurus, father and father’s lineage, pilgrimage, spiritual learning and development, foreign travels. It mainly indicates our luck and fortune in this life. Tenth house is mainly about your career and also your father’s profession. Eleventh house indicates your social circle and networking, elder siblings, and financial gains. Twelfth house is about Moksh (liberation), but is also about foreign lands, and it also gives an idea about one’s sleeping (bed) habits. You can check what planet is deposited in each of these houses. Also, check the Nakshatra in which the planet is placed. Check Part-II of this blog for more details.

Beware that Rahu and Ketu are not planets; they are called lunar nodes. Rahu is the northern node (head) and Ketu is the southern node (tail). These are meant to be one entity (an Asura or demon known as Svarbhanu) but according to the myth, the Asura was decapitated by God (Lord Vishnu) into two entities. Rahu is known as Maya Karaka (the facilitator of illusions) and Ketu is known as Moksha Karaka (the facilitator of Moksha or liberation).

Next, check the position of Moon, that is, in which house your moon is placed, because this is important to understand how the yearly transits of all the planets will affect you. Yearly transits are always seen from the moon, since the moon represents the mind. Your mind is the one that ultimately deals with the ups and downs of life.

What does 2020 hold for each of the 12 signs?

First, look for the sign where your moon is placed. This is your rashi.

Jupiter transited from Scorpio to Sagittarius (own house) on November 5, 2019. It will be placed here for almost for entire 2020. Saturn transits from Sagittarius to its own house Capricorn on January 24, 2020 and will remain there for 2.5 years.

This year 2020 and the current Jupiter and Saturn transit is most beneficial for Leo and Scorpio rashi people. Because Jupiter is 5th and Saturn is 6th for Leo and Jupiter is 2nd and Saturn 3rd for Scorpio Rashi people (for whom Sade Sati 7.5 years Saturn) also gets over. For people of both these signs, they can expand their family and flourish in their business.

Also for Pisces, 2020 looks promising, Jupiter is in 10th house, so expansion in career is seen. They may get promotions but work will be stressful. Saturn in 11th will give gains.

For Aries, Jupiter is in 9th house and Saturn in 10th. So, while Jupiter is favourable, Saturn is not so favourable as job/career can get affected.

For Taurus, Jupiter is in 8th house and Saturn is in 9th house, so lot of spiritual progress is seen in the coming 2.5 years coupled with some challenges.

For Cancer, Jupiter is in 6th and Saturn in 7th, which indicates struggles and pressure at work and in sustaining partnerships in personal and professional levels.

For Virgo, Jupiter is in 4th, which emphasizes expansion in home and family front, but Saturn is in 5th, which is also somewhat difficult and opposing harmony at home and with children.

For Libra, Jupiter is in 3rd, which emphasizes communication and taking courageous initiatives and also amending broken relationships with siblings. Saturn in 4th house will surely stir up some chaos at home and with mother.

For Sagittarius, Jupiter is in 1st house, so one will find lots of opportunities to focus on Self-development and Self-realization. Saturn in second house will put some financial strain.

For Capricorn, Jupiter is in 12th house, so again the person will go on spiritual pursuit. Such people need to be careful with their health. They may also travel abroad. Saturn is in 1st house, so they will have some fear of failures and isolation.

For Aquarius, Jupiter is 11th house, which indicates lots of financial gains, and Saturn is in 12th, so they should be careful with their spiritual pursuits, do not trust everyone and stop self-doubt.

Important note: Transits are not only read by seeing moon and which houses Jupiter and Saturn transit, but by also checking the Ashtakavarga scores and Binnashtakavarga scores of each planet for each house relating to the transit. This has not been described in the article due to complexity. It is meant for advanced learning of astrology.

Contributed by spiritual guide/astrologer Yogamaya 9