India’s ancient system of knowledge is deeply entrenched in the Vedas. As per Hindu teachings, our life is destined for spiritual development. This evolution is, in part, aided by karma. It is a notion that each thought and action have an equivalent and corresponding reaction.
The Vedas state that an individual’s karma is directly connected to the position of the planets and stars, and thereby astrology is the means of comprehending one’s karma by assessing these positions. Vedic astrology is based on the faith that the stars and planets have a strong influence on our lives.
The use of Nakshatra is extremely significant in Vedic astrology, far more than with zodiac signs. Indian prophets state that the Nakshatras denote the residences into which the fruits of our labor (Karma) are moved and hoarded.
What is Nakshatras?
Naksha is considered to be a map and Tara denotes a star, thereby making Nakshatra a star map. It is the term used for a lunar mansion in Hindu astrology and Indian astronomy. The 28 Nakshatras (sometimes 27) is the name devoted to the constellation of the moon as it lives in every constellation for one day.
Every constellation is known to encompass 13 degrees, 20 minutes. The computation of Nakshatras starts with Ashwini Nakshatra at 0 degrees Aries and finishes on 30 degrees of Pisces enclosed by Revati Nakshatra. The Abhijeet Nakshatra (28th Nakshatra) is deemed to be significant while determining the time of an auspicious event. The Vimshottari Dasha, a 120-year-long planetary cycle, is grounded upon the birth Nakshatra. Every Nakshatra is divided into four sections that are referred to as Padas.
The prediction methodology based on an individual’s Moola nakshatra at the time of birth is believed to be the most precise as opposed to other types of astrology. These Nakshatras are categorized in numerous ways as per primary characteristics, fundamental motivation, dharma, moksha and so forth.
The 27 Nakshatras are split into three broad categories of 9 each.
Dev Gana: They are meant to be angel-like, very subtle as well as refined.
Manushya Gana: It means humans. They behave and act like any human.
Rakshas Gana: People who are born under this Gana are not considered to be a demon but there are more chances for them to exhibit an unpolished attitude and behavior to some extent.
Connection to Moon
The Nakshatras or lunar constellations are believed to be intimately related to the Moon and its innumerable expressions. The Moon shifts signs (houses) approximately 2.3 days. Therefore, in 28 days, the Moon passes through all the 12 signs of the zodiac. It takes around two weeks for a waxing moon and two weeks for a waning moon. Vedic astrology associated the moon with our intellect, intuition, mind as well as emotions. It stresses the fact that the ‘Moon portions’ within a person are always modifying and are regulated by the infinite movement and change of the Moon. The movement of the Moon is related to the Nakshatras. Moreover, the Moon is believed to rule all the Nakshatras.
Let’s take a look at the 27 Nakshatras in detail:
Ashwini: This Nakshatra is ruled by Lord Ketu. Its symbol is the head of a horse. The presiding deities are considered to be the Ashwin twins – Sasra and Satya believed to be physicians to the Gods. It’s connected to healing as well as rejuvenation. This nakshatra is assumed to bring you swift help and will fill you up with a lot of energy. It is said that it can bring about rapid, essential and miraculous cures.
Bharani: This Nakshatra is ruled by Lord Shukra (Venus). Its symbol is meant to be Yoni, the female organ of reproduction. The reigning deity is Lord Yama – God of Death. It helps in self-control and restraint as well as death and transformation. It represents discipline and sacrifice.
Krittika: This Nakshatra is ruled by Lord Surya (Sun). Its symbol is believed to be a knife or spear. The dominant deity is Agni – God of Fire. Its characteristic attributes are intelligence, speed, brightness and clarification.
Rohini: This Nakshatra is believed to be governed by Lord Chandra (Moon). Its symbol is considered to be a chariot or a cart, temple and banyan tree. The reigning deity is said to be Lord Brahma or Lord Prajapati. It stands for creativity and culture. It confers you with fertility.
Mrigarshirsha: Lord Mangla (Mars) rules this Nakshatra. The deer’s head is meant to be its symbol. The presiding deity is believed to be Soma and Chandra – the Moon God. It epitomizes comfort, development, happiness and a friendly attitude.
Ardra: Lord Rahu governs this Nakshatra. Its symbol is meant to be a teardrop as well as the head of a human being. The dominant deity is Rudra – the Storm God. This Nakshatra signifies emotional upheaval, annihilation, natural diseases as well as illness.
Punarvasu: Lord Guru (Jupiter) reigns over this Nakshatra. Its symbol is believed to be a bow and quiver. The sovereign deity is Aditi – Mother of the Gods. She is known to epitomize empathy, abundance, safety, knowledge and expansion.
Pushya: This Nakshatra is ruled by Lord Shani (Saturn). Its symbol is considered to be a cow’s udder, arrow, circle and lotus. The reigning deity is believed to be Lord Brihaspati – Priest of the Gods. It represents consciousness, insight and ritual.
Ashlesha: Lord Buddha (Mercury) presides over this Nakshatra. Its symbol is believed to be a serpent. The ruling deity is considered to be Nagas – deitified snakes. It denotes healing, transcendence, overconfidence and powerful research.
Magha: Lord Ketu is believed to reign over his Nakshatra. Its symbol is considered to be the royal throne. The dominant deities are the Pitrs – family ancestors. It demonstrates a sense of responsibility, masculine energy, ancestral relation and authority.
Purva Phalguni: Lord Shukra (Venus) governs this Nakshatra. Its symbol is believed to be the legs of the bed. The presiding deity is considered to be Bhaga – God of Marital Happiness & Prosperity. It stands for money as well as luck. It establishes love, relationship, affection and sexual passion.
Uttara Phalguni: Lord Surya (Sun) rules this Nakshatra. Its symbol is considered to be the four stumps of the bed. The dominant deity is Aryaman – God of patronage and favors. He provides health, body strength and nourishment. He reigns over family, marriage and children.
Hasta: This Nakshatra is ruled by Lord Chandra (Moon). Its symbol is deemed to be the hand or a fist. The reigning deity is the Sun God. He exemplifies knowledge, insight, mindfulness and illumination.
Chitra: This Nakshatra is led by Lord Mangala (Mars). It is represented by a pearl or a shimmering ornament. The dominant God is the Vishwakarma – a celestial architect. It stands for construction, embellishment, development and renovation.
Swati: Lord Rahu rules this Nakshatra. It is denoted by a shoot of a plant. The reigning deity is Vayu, the Wind God. It stands for vigor, influence and movement.
Vishakha: This Nakshatra is ruled by Lord Guru (Jupiter). Its symbol is meant to be a potter’s wheel. The presiding deity is believed to be Indra, the chief of gods. It denotes both political and spiritual authority.
Anuradha: Lord Shani (Saturn) reigns over this Nakshatra. It is represented by a lotus. The dominant deity is believed to be Mitra. He demonstrates partnership and friendship.
Jyeshtha: This Nakshatra is managed by Lord Buddha (Mercury). Its symbol is considered to be a circular amulet, earring, and umbrella. The presiding deity is considered to be Indra – the chief of Gods. It represents thoughtfulness, conservatism and stresses humanitarian deeds.
Moola: Lord Ketu is believed to rule this Nakshatra. It is represented by an elephant goad as well as a bunch of roots that are tied together. Its dominant deity is considered to be Nirrti – Goddess of Dissolution and Obliteration. It is related to the end of life, a precursor to a new beginning.
Purva Ashadha: Lord Shukra (Venus) is believed to reign over this Nakshatra. Its symbol is deemed to be an elephant tusk, a fan as well as a winnowing basket. The sovereign deity is considered to be Apah – God of Water. It is linked to seeking, rejuvenation as well as emotions.
Uttara Ashadha: Lord Surya (Sun) is assumed to rule over this Nakshatra. The symbol is considered to be an elephant tusk and a small bed. The reigning deity is believed to be a Visvedevas, deemed to be universal gods. It stands for Dharma, decent character and goodness.
Sravana: Lord Chandra (Moon) is believed to govern this Nakshatra. It is denoted by an ear or three footprints. The dominant deity is believed to be Lord Vishnu, the preserver of the universe. It stands for tolerance, growth and understanding.
Dhanishta: Lord Mangala (Mars) reigns over this Nakshatra. Its symbol is considered to be a flute or a drum. The presiding deity is Eight Vasus, standing for earthly abundance. It is known to bring prosperity and exceptional fame.
Shatabhisha: This Nakshatra is governed by Lord Rahu. It is denoted by an empty circle or a charm. The reigning deity is believed to be Lord Varuna, God of Cosmic Waters. It is exemplified by discrimination and judgment.
Purva Bhadrapada: Lord Guru (Jupiter) rules this Nakshatra. Its symbol is believed to be swords, a two-faced man as well as the front of a funeral bed. The dominant God is deemed to be Ajikanda – an ancient fire dragon. It represents penance and purification.
Uttara Bhadrapada: Lord Shani (Saturn) reigns over this Nakshatra. It is denoted by the rear stumps of the funeral bed. The sovereign deity is deemed to be Ahir Budhyana. It is associated with the subconscious mind.
Revati: This Nakshatra is ruled by Lord Buddha (Mercury). Its symbol is believed to be a fish or a pair of fish. The presiding deity is considered to be Pushan, the Protective God. He provides guidance as well as protection and offers sustenance and success.
Legends surrounding Nakshatras
As per one of the popular legends, there was a ruler named Daksha, who requested Moon to marry all his 27 daughters. The Moon responded well to the proposal and agreed. They were believed to be the 27 Nakshatras. However, Moon was deeply in love with Rohini the most and enjoyed spending time with her, also regarded as the Moon’s exaltation point. This behavior annoyed the other 26 wives and they complained to King Daksha about it.
The King continually asked the Moon to give love to all wives equally but the Moon did not alter his nature. This enraged the ruler who cursed the Moon to contract in size. This led to the Moon waning in size. The outcome of the curse was not good and all the deities were forced to intervene. They requested King Daksha to withdraw the curse. All the celestial beings assured the ruler that the Moon will spend equal time with all his wives.
Since the curse could not be taken back completely, as a remedy, the waxing and waning of the Moon began from that time. This is the chief reason why the Moon passes through all the 27 Nakshatras in the duration of a month by finishing the orbit which leads to Purnima and Amavasya by growing and diminishing in size.
Interesting Facts about Nakshatras
- The planetary movements and nakshatra are evaluated at the time of the birth of the baby and thereby offer an assessment of individual charts.
- The personality of an individual is based on the Nakshatras as the movement of the nakshatras all through your life will offer you all the details associated with your birth, personality, strengths as well as weaknesses.
- The nakshatra in which the Moon is positioned at the time of your birth is observed as the Janma Nakshatra.
- The entire sky is split into 12 equal parts and called the zodiac signs but if the sky is divided into 27 sections, then it is referred to as nakshatras. Considering zodiac signs are bigger and nakshatras are smaller, every 2.25 nakshatra comes under each Zodiac.
- Every Nakshatra is ruled as a ‘lord’ by one of the nine Graha in this order: Ketu, Shukra, Surya, Chandra, Mangala, Rahu, Brihaspati, Shani and Buddha. This cycle is recurring three times to encompass all 27 Nakshatras.
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