How an IIT-ian met Astrology.

How an IIT-ian met Astrology.

Back in 2006 while preparing for IIT whenever I used to take stress for my exams, my mother reassuringly told me, “Beta chinta mat kar kundli mein teri uchh shiksha ka yog hai.“ It roughly translates to “Do not worry, my son, as your kundli states that you will attain high quality higher education.” To this, I responded with “Mom, yeh kundli wagerah kuch nahi hota, mehnat hai sab” ( there is no such thing as kundli & all that matters is hard work). This made me wonder if there is anything such as Kundli and whether the hard work matters?

Nobody steps into the field of astrology unless one has gone through something very bad in his life. In 2009 , I was wrongly diagnosed with Last stage Blood Cancer(Yeah! It Happens) then Fast forwarding to 2011, on 11th February I suffered a paralytic attack in my room, number B59, in Karakoram Hostel in IIT, Delhi. Apart from getting the best treatment, my parents took my kundli to one of the best astrologers in Jaipur and to my surprise they were able to foretell my situation precisely. They also correctly told my parents of my ongoing preparations for getting a government job. I had just begun preparing for civil services in my 4th year. I was stunned to hear the accuracy and details with which the prediction was made by the astrologer. Lost and curious for solutions, I was intrigued into finding more about this amazing science called ASTROLOGY.

Humble Beginnings: Research

Like most beginners, I initially started surfing the web for the best books on the subject. Sadly, I was disappointed with the quality of writing available on the Internet. While all claimed to be the best books on Vedic Astrology, none was able to help me in predicting events. The content was very general and bland. As luck would have it, one day I stumbled upon a gem titled “The Message of the Stars “ by Max Heindel. It helped me immensely in figuring out the fundamental constituents of astrological forces i.e. Planets, Signs, Ascendants, Houses etc. After brushing up my basics with this book, I began to at least correctly predict the character traits of an unknown person with near precision. However, prediction of events was still a far cry.

The method employed by Heindel was different from the Indian way. The latter included different aspects which made the whole procedure of prediction very complex. I was left struggling to find the right method for an accurate prognosis as the Indian Vedic system turned out to be utterly convoluted as well. When you have 12 Signs, 12 Houses, 9 planets in addition to aspects of these planets, their degrees and the like it leads to infinite number of permutations and combinations. One cannot rely on such a system to predict with certainty and confidence. Also, another problem with this system was the concept of ‘Upayas(remedies)’ that seemed totally illogical. The so-called Pundits had for long been minting money off their clients’ misery by suggesting random solutions such as suggesting cancellation of marriage if a girl/boy is found manglik. (The farce of these remedies provided by the so called pundits shall be discussed at length later).

If someone visits an astrologer/pundit for the prediction of an event, instead of giving him the requisite prediction he is likely to be fed with some gibberish like you have such and such ‘Doshas’. The present scene is replete with money minded functionally illiterate and pretentious astrologers with no intent to provide solutions/remedies to help people by employing this divine science. They are just feeding superstitions to the common man and disgracing the noble field of astrology, a precursor to Mathematics.

So after getting acquainted with an abundance of such astrologers and recognizing the absence of a precise method for prediction in the literature around me, I came across a new field or rather, a new methodology called ‘Nadi Astrology’. Subsequently, I also discovered K.P. Astrology. In these systems, emphasis has been laid on Nakshatras through which the planet is transiting. I shall describe their unique aspects in another post. For now, it suffices to say that this combination of Nadi and K.P. astrology did wonders in helping me predict events with precision and near zero confusion. I stepped from the dark into the light.But later even when KP Astrology gave me wrong predictions then I went back to basics i.e. Vedic Astrology and tried to dig deep as if Varahamihira and other ancient sages have been dependent upon the Vedic Astrology to predict then why could not I predict with same accuracy. I later realised that majority of current Vedic Astrologers in the market have half baked knowledge and they are teaching that half baked knowledge and based on that when one start giving predictions then after some time one gets disappointed and start looking for new methods of prediction. Now, that's the catch as one should not leave the vedic method just because teachers are bad and one has to find the right teacher which I eventually found when I discovered Mr. Sanjeev ranjan Mishra Sir. He changed my life and the methods he taught me worked wonders for me. He taught me the limitation and context required in astrology to predict accurately. Since then I have not looked back. I keep going back to the basic classical texts in astrology like Brihat Parashar Hora Shastra or books written by Varahmihira etc. whenever I face some confusion and every time I find something new. So one just needs to keep diggin and try to find the right guru who can answer your every question and encourage you to ask more.

Astrology: Superstition or Science?

This is often the first thought that strikes a person who gets to know about my passion for astrology. Their most common question: How can a planet decide my fate and influence the course of my life. We will try and address these questions.

The best thing about Astrology is the existence of “Pratyaksh Praman” or “Apparent Proof”. In my experience, It has never happened that a person who has come to me with his horoscope has had a path of life totally different from what the stars predict it should have been. Whenever someone questions me on this count, I never go into the realm of metaphysics to explain the reasons heavyweight concepts of soul and rebirth. My simple outlook is that astrology follows the standard rules of science i.e.

1) Astrology observes the correlation between the position of stars w.r.t. the latitude-longitude of the place of birth and the life path of a particular man and subsequently the same process is repeated for ‘n’ number of man

2) On the basis of this humongous set of data compiled by the scientists (then known as ‘rishis’), they started creating empirical formulas to make sense of the correlation which we nowadays call as regression analysis resulting in creation of the document for analyzing someone’s life, what we call as KUNDLI.

3) Just like any experiment in science firstly, some hypothesis and postulates were made followed by an empirical study of a lot of horoscopes  ultimately concluded with creation of universal formula.

Like science, the last step is the fact check. The proof of the pudding lies in the eating. Here is where the fun lies as astrology is ahead of its kith and kin. In science, it could take several years for proving any theory but in astrology, the requisite proof is obtained so much sooner. (At most, within the person’s lifetime!)

Work of Modern Day Scientists :

To talk about astrology as a science and not talk about scientists of relevance would be disrespectful. Let’s shed some light on the work of Alexander Chizhevsky in the field of planetary influence on human minds. He proposed that not only did geomagnetic storms resulting from sunspot-related solar flares affect usage of electricity, plane crashes, epidemics and grasshopper infestations, but also mental life and activity of human beings. Increased negative ionization in the atmosphere increased the human mass excitability. Chizhevsky proposed that human history is influenced by eleven-year peaks in sunspot activity, triggering humans en masse to act upon existing grievances and complaints through revolts, revolutions, civil wars and wars between nations

In 1992 Arcady A. Putilov, a researcher in Animal and Human Physiology, published a paper empirically testing Chizhevsky hypothesis by analyzing events in Soviet history. Putilov found that the frequency and “polarity” of events, including revolution, is the highest in the years of the solar cycle maximum and lowest in the year before the solar cycle minimum. In 1996, a professor of psychology at the University of Goettingen, Suitbert Ertel, corroborated a “substantial” relationship between solar activity and revolutionary behavior through statistical analysis of a “Master Index of Violence from Below” (MIVE) for the period 1700–1985 CE.

I also relate to Dr. Frank Brown when it comes to my evolution of interest in astrology. He was a man without any faith in the subject. He was a skeptic, and in his earlier writings he ridiculed it. Yet in spite of his skepticism, he began some investigation. He put together the birth charts of many famous military Generals, doctors and other professionals. To his surprise, he found himself in a difficult spot, since he discovered that members of a particular profession were born under a specific planet under the same constellation. For instance, all the famous Generals had a very strong influence of Mars upon their lives, whereas it was almost completely absent in the lives of academics.

Research Continues :

I have studied numerous horoscopes and have come up with the exact same conclusion. All police officers tend to have a strong influence of Mars. Great orators are bound to have a heavy presence of Mercury. It has never been seen that a person serving as a General in the Army has a weak Mars. The study which Mr. Brown carried out reveals that at the moment of their birth, the planet Mars was ascending. If it happened only occasionally, you could think of it as a coincidence but there cannot be thousands of coincidences.

In fact, there is a great difference in behavior among people of different professions – for example, police officers, musicians, IAS officers, doctors, politicians etc. Now, the question that arises is whether it is only an intellectual dispute between them, or also, a dispute of the stars? Does their time of birth draw a divide between them?

The more research is done, the more it is realized that a person’s unique talents are revealed by the time of his birth. Once we start exploring the cause behind this phenomena, we will have to step into the metaphysics of astrology. Osho says that a man is not of a particular type simply because he is born under a certain constellation but in fact the man chooses the constellation under which he is to be born. He will be born under the appropriate constellation according to what he wants to be – whatever be his innate possibilities, the shape of his last life taken in its entirety, and his motivating consciousness. Every child, every new life, insists on a specific moment for birth.

In trying to understand the relations between planetary influence on our lives, let’s look at another example: Every year hundreds of thousands of birds fly thousands of miles. When winter is on its way and snow about to fall, the birds begin to migrate from the areas exactly one month before the downpour begins. How do these birds calculate the date on which snow is likely to fall? Our weatherman, with the most elaborate observatories, is unable to come up with such exact information.

Similarly, in Japan, there is a bird which evacuates the town twenty four hours ago before an earthquake is going to occur. Scientists have acknowledged the fact that every living organism possesses an internal sensor which feels the cosmic influences. This inner sensor makes us aware of the unity in the cosmos – there is nothing alive on Earth which is isolated or separate. Whatever happens anywhere, the effects are felt everywhere.

Present day physicians are also coming to the conclusion that whenever sunspots emerge and grow on the sun, illness on the earth increases, and that whenever the sunspots decrease, illness on the earth also decreases. According to them, as long as sunspots are a continued occurrence, we will never get rid of disease on Earth. Whenever explosion and turmoil occurs on the Sun, wars and disturbances occur on Earth. Wars, Epidemics and Revolution also follow a ten or eleven year cycle.

Ergo, once we are conscious that we are not separate or isolated but part of a whole joined together in an organic way, it is easier to understand astrology.

Now let’s take a look at a more challenging perspective. We always look at things keeping the past as the point of view. The bud is blossoming but our thinking is bound to the past. We say that the bud is blossoming, that it is becoming a flower, that the bud will become a flower. But the reverse may be the case. For instance, if I push you from behind, I am making you go forward. But it may also be that someone is pulling you from ahead. The motion can be in both directions. It may also be that someone is pulling you from ahead and that no one is pushing you from behind. In this case too, you will move forward. Astrology recognises the incompleteness of the perspective that the past gives the impetus and that the future happens as a result. If one views a phenomenon in its totality, one sees that the past is providing the impetus, but that the future is also exercising a pull, an attraction. The bud becoming a flower is not all that is happening. The flower is calling out to the bud to become a flower, and the entire future is calling on the bud to become a flower.

Under pressure from both the directions, past and future, the bud will become a flower. If there were no future, the past by itself would not be able to create the flower because the future must provide the space for the bud to become a flower. In the future, a place, some space, is necessary. Only if the future provides the space will the bud be able to become a flower. If there were no future, no matter how much the past tried, it would be in vain. So the past does the work but the future gives the space.

It is thus the view of astrology that looking from the standpoint of past alone is insufficient and partially scientific. The future is calling all the time, drawing us all the time. We do not know, we are not aware. This is the weakness of our eyes also, this is our shortsightedness that we do not see very far. Nothing is revealed to us about tomorrow.

If one could know at an early age about his potential in a particular field or in which direction his life is going to get steered then he can be driven towards his goal with maximum potential. Necessary and substantial resources could be given to him at an early stage to reach his maximum potential.

The future is not utterly uncertain. Our knowledge is uncertain and our ignorance is weighty. Nothing of the future seems to be revealed to us and since nothing seems to be revealed to us, we say it is uncertain. But Astrology is not merely the study of what the stars and planets say, or of calculating their significance. This is only one dimension of Astrology.

It is an attempt to probe future using many different paths. Among these and the most commonly used path is the study of how planets and stars influence man. For this, ever more scientific evidence is becoming available day by day. Of this much, we seem certain: life is affected and cannot avoid being affected by these influences. Only the second part remains difficult to determine: whether each person is also affected as an individual. It worries people and scientists whether all people are affected as individuals and that too in different ways.

Now, nature further gives each person a thumbprint which is uniquely his own, individual and non-repetitive that can never belong to anyone else, neither now nor in the future. It holds true for even twins born out of the same egg and womb. If nature can bestow so much individuality on each person with respect to a worthless thing like a thumb – a thing of no special value serving no special purpose, can it not give each man a unique life and a unique soul?

There seems to be no reason why it should not. But science moves in slow motion- and it is good! Until a fact has been completely proved, it is not good to move forward even an inch. It sees only facts that can be experimented upon. Astrology is basically an investigation of the future and science is basically an investigation of the past. It is the investigation of the cause behind all that exists today. Astrology is the investigation of the effect of all that exists today. Between the two, there is a huge gap.

Science has only recently accepted that every person is born with a built in individuality. For a long time it has been reluctant to accept the validity of this idea. But astrology has always been asserting this. Just try to understand this, for example – a mango seed has a built in programme and if it were not so the seed would be helpless. Everything must be present within it. Whatever the tree will be, must somehow be concealed with in the seed. We can smash it and dissect it and it will still not be visible. But it must be there somehow, otherwise a neem tree might emerge from the mango seed. Now, if this all this is contained within a mango seed, when you come into your mother’s womb will there be nothing latent in your seed?

It seems : no mistakes are ever made

Scientists now agree that even at this stage of your conception the color of your eyes must lie concealed, that the height of your body must lie concealed, that the possibilities of health and ill health must lie concealed and that even your IQ must lie concealed. You must have a programme that is built in advance. How will certain bones join together as a foot and others as a hand? How can all this happen.

It was widely believed in the scientific community that it is just a coincidence. But the word coincidence seems very unscientific. Coincidence means chance and by chance a foot might begin to see and a hand to hear. But there does not seem to be a coincidence. Everything is in order, prearranged. Astrology says something more scientific. It says that everything is available with in the seed. Astrology says that if we study the seed then we can decode the language and similarly we can draw the complete blueprint of a human being too. Up to now, we have considered astrology to be superstition, a matter of blind faith. But if science draws up such blueprints, it will in fact become astrology.  

Astrology declares that if by divine grace we can come to know the whole, the future as such will cease to exist. Because we do not know the whole – we only know a small fragment and what we do not know becomes the future. We are obliged to say perhaps it will be like this because much is unknown to us. If the whole were known then we could say : “ It will be like this “ and it would be exactly so.

If everything is latent within the human seed – only a matter of studying the seed.

Whatever I am writing today and whatsoever I have thought and acted upon must have existed in my seed as a potentiality. Otherwise, how could I talk about all this? If some day it becomes possible to observe a human seed then after observing my seed, a blueprint could be drawn upon indicating who I will become, who will I not become and all this could be forecast with precision.

Birth charts and horoscopes are only probing tools into all these matters. For thousands of years when a child is born, we have tried to find out who he will grow to become. If we could get some idea, probably we could make arrangements to enhance the child’s opportunities. Whatever would happen later, we could become more accepting of it.

Astrology helps us to learn to cooperate with the inevitable. It does not unnecessarily struggle against whatever it is to be. It does not demand or reach out towards whatever is not to be. Astrology is a means for making man religious, for bringing him to an ultimate acceptance. The Universe is a living body, an organic unity. In it nothing is isolated, all is connected. Whatever is far away is connected to that which is near, nothing is separate.

One should not remain in a fallacy that he is on an isolated island, separate, aloof. Each one is connected to the whole and the whole is connected to each one. Everything is made up of atom and the atoms are always in a constant state of vibration. The energy field that one has what we call as one’s aura is due to these vibrations depending on his mental and physical well-being. So we are always affecting our surroundings with our vibrations and the vibration of surroundings is affecting us simultaneously.

Now, it is said that we are affected by the moon and stars. Another astrological postulate is that the moon and the stars are in turn affected by us – a two way influence. Whenever a man like Buddha is born on the Earth, a current of peace flows, the pillar of consciousness grows strong which also makes it difficult for the storm to arise on the Sun because everything is joined together. This phenomenon can also be compared to gravity which states that not only is the sun attracting us but we are also attracting it towards us. The force acts both ways. A tiny blade of grass has an impact on the Sun and the Sun has its impact on the blade of grass. The blade of grass is not so tiny that the sun can say : “ I do not care about you “ nor is the Sun so big that it can say : “What can this blade of grass do to me ? “. Life is interconnected and nothing is big or small – Everything is one organic unity.

Life is a whole and one can understand astrology only and only if one can perceive this wholeness.

My kind of Astrology

In the name of astrology, ninety-nine percent of the astrologers only bluff. Only one percent know that astrology is a vast subject – so vast that someone can only enter into it hesitatingly. The astrology I am talking about is of unfathomable depth. Something essential between your life and the universe is connected in a rhythmic harmony. Whatever is happening anywhere in the universe also affects man and vice versa. If we can understand this properly, there is no need to live caged within ego and pride. Very powerful forces are operating, and your ego is absolutely insignificant. You are an integral part of this big world.

Every child, every new life, insists on a specific moment for conception and for birth – both are interdependent. He will choose the appropriate constellations according to what he wants to be – whatever his innate possibilities, whatever the shape his previous lives have taken in their entirety, whatever his motivating consciousness is.

At the time of birth, the condition of a child’s mind is exactly like a very sensitive photo plate. When a child is conceived, it is the first exposure. The day the child is born is a second exposure. These two exposures are registered upon the sensitive mind of the child, as if on film. The world, as it is at that moment, is imprinted upon the child. This determines the child’s sympathies and antipathies for his entire life.

The first part of astrology is the outermost layer, which is nonessential. There everything is circumstantial, uncertain, unpredictable. The more we talk about external happenings, the more there is coincidence. The second part is the middle layer, the semi-essential layer. There is possibility of transformation if the right choice is made. The third part is the core, the essence. It cannot be changed. When it is known, the only way is to cooperate with it.

It is this third innermost dimension that is crucial – the quintessence of everything and absolutely predetermined. The more one moves toward one’s center, the nearer one comes to the essential, the predetermined part. With inner phenomena, things begin to appear scientific, as if based on a definite law. They become more and more decisive.

Between these two conditions – the peripheral and the essential – in the middle layer there is ample room to affect changes by exercising one’s freedom of choice. Here, someone with awareness will make the correct choice. The right way is to start moving towards your center. A person who is in the darkness of ignorance, though, will drift into his destiny, putting up with whatever comes his way.

When you go to an astrologer, ask him an essential question, like, “Will I die unhappy or fulfilled?” This is worth asking. It is connected to essential astrology. You are usually asking the astrologer how long you will live – as if just living is sufficient. Why will you live? For what shall you live? What shall I become if I live? Astrology can become a tool in your hands only if you distinguish the essential from the nonessential.

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