Friday, October 27, 2006

Predictive Styles of Vedic Astrology

The main styles of vedic astrology are:

  1. Parashari Jyotish
  2. Jaimini Jyotish
  3. Nadi Jyotish
  4. Tajika Jyotish
  5. Tantric Jyotish
  6. Krishnamurthi Paddhati


Parashari Jyotish refers to the style or tradition of jyotish as elaborated by Maharishi Parashara in his classical work called the Brihat Parashara Hora Shastra. Maharishi Parashara is often referred to as the father of jyotish or vedic astrology. BPHS contains 97 chapters and a total of 2,000 verses dealing with natal astrology. There are several other classical works that are elaborations of the Parashara system of astrology. Some of them are Brihad Jataka, Phaladipika, Saravali, Jataka Parijata. These contributions came after the BPHS and are important additions to the BPHS. The Parashari system of astrology is the most common and most popular form of natal astrology practiced by a majority of the Indian astrologers.

Varahamihira was another very respectable contributor whose chief contributions were the Brihat Jataka and Brihat Samita. It is said that Varahmihira lived around the 4th century AD in the court of the Emperor Chandragupta II and happened to be the court astrologer. He was renowned for his accurate predictions, knowledge and learning. Brihad Jataka is his most widely read book which deals with birth or natal astrology.


Maharishi Jaimini was a great vedic seer and is believed by some authorities to have written the Jaimini Sutras, a work which forms the foundation of this system. Jaimini Sutras are cryptic and complex verses whose meanings and interpretations are subject to a lot of debate and confusion. A small minority of people practice this system of jyotish. There is little resemblance between the Parashari system and the Jaimini system. Jaimini system seems to have been developed as an alternative or a parallel to the Parashara system. There are a few astrologers who believe that both the systems can be used together and complement Parashara astrology with the Jaimini system to improve their predictive skills. However common sense tells that they both are very different systems and it is doubtful if they can be merged. It is wise to not club the Jaimini system with the Parsahara brand of astrology. Jaimini aspects are different (it uses rashi aspects), Jaimini dashas are rashi dashas as opposed to Parashara dashas which are nakshatra dashas, jaimini calculation of strengths of houses is different, calculation of longevity is different etc. According to me there exists a wall between the two types of astrology although many learned astrologers differ in their views and believe both styles can co-exist.


It is said that the Rishis of India became so masterly at astrology that they began generating horoscopes of people who were not yet born, and predict the major events in their lives. The Rishis were superhuman. They did horoscopes with thousands of birth charts. Fragments of the Nadis have survived and are handed over from parent to child in certain families of vedic Indian astrologers who act like guardians or custodians of the horoscopes. These remains are identified by their authors or schools and the horoscopes are found in “Nadi Granthas”. A Nadi Grantha, is a compilation of already calculated horoscopes with predictions given. You go to the reader, he calculates your chart and then finds a matching one in his collection and reads out the predictions. The reader does not necessarily know astrology. Each Nadi is unique in style depending on the Rishi who wrote it.

There are many Nadi Granthas mainly in South India. In the North there is Bhrigu Samitha in Punjab. In the south the popular ones are Kala Chandra Nadi, Vashista Nadi, Suka Nadi, Dhruva Nadi, Buddha Nadi, Brghu-Nandi Nadi, Bhargava Nadi etc.

When a complete reading is available ina Nadi Grantha it usually includes four parts: A bhava Phala, Yoga Khanda, Karma Khanda and Shanti Khanda. Just like everything else in the world, in the world of astrology also there are counterfeit Nadi Granthas who are out to cheat you. For this reason one must be careful in getting a reading through a Nadi Grantha.


The Tajika system is a late development and is a cross between the Vedic and Arabic astrology introduced into India by the Turks. Tajika is a Sanskrit term for an “Arab”. Tajika is somewhat popular in Northern India (which was ravaged by the Muslims) amongst the eclectic astrologers who don't strictly follow Vedic tradition.

In the Middle Ages (around 1587 AD) a Hindu astrologer, Nilakanta, wrote a text and commentary on this system called Tajika-Nilakanti. There have been a couple of translations into English of the Tajika system of Prasna Tantra and their method of "yearly horoscope" called Varshaphala. This Varshaphala is nothing but the "solar return" that is used in western astrology with a few Vedic twists added. To better understand Tajika system one should study the works of William Lilly (17th century English astrologer) for Prasna, and other Western texts on Solar returns.

Tajika system is hardly known in East India and practically unheard of in South India where Vedic traditions are more carefully preserved from impurities such as Tajika. It is unfortunate, that without finding out its antecedents, at least one well known astrologer has introduced Tajika into ISKCON. This is the danger of mimicking what ever Hindus do and assuming it is Vedic. You have to research and dig for the truth.

Tajika system’ highlight is its generally above average method of doing yearly readings. However; I believe that the Tithi Pravesha or the luni-solar year chart is a far superior method of seeing the yearly drift of a chart since it bases not only on the Sun’s position but the moons position as well. Vedic astrology is also capable of doing yearly readings, or readings for any length of time. But the "yearly reading" is a Tajika specialty. If you are not certain whether the yearly reading is Vedic or Tajika find out how the astrologer bases the reading. If he answers that it is based on the sun returning to the same position as it was at the time of your birth, then that is a clear indication of Tajika. Generally speaking whatever Tajika system of astrology can do; Parashara system can do it better.


The origins and roots of tantric jyotish are most unclear or unknown. In an astrological context the word Tantric means a mystical and intuitive attitude towards jyotish. Tantra calls for sacrificial rites and a person who practices this school of astrology relies on his internal information over his observation of the external sources. Often times he gives amazingly correct readings using magical and psychic techniques. Techniques might include observation and interpretation of omens, observation of breathing patterns at the moment of the question, speech patterns of the client, mannerisms, clairvoyance, astral travel, the use of information received from spirits and the use of other shamanic techniques. These methods are generally performed within the parameters of the jyotish model. A tantric jyotish interprets omens according to when and where such omens happen.


In very recent years an astrologer from Tamil Nadu, the late KS Krishnamurti, attempted to formulate his own system which he called the Krsnamurti Paddhati. This system is based primarily on the Parasara method with a lot of focus on the Nakshatras and their lordships. It gives more importance to the Nakshatra lord and sub lord rather than the house lord. The Vimshottari mahadasha is the foundation for this system. Then on the basis of the rulerships of the nakshatras based on the Vimshottari method he created his system. He also adopted the Placidius house system from the West. This is an uneven house system, and the first house begins from the lagna point.

The KP system is definitely not as popular as the Parashara system. Many astrologers reject it outright. It has defects such as assuming the nakshatras are ruled by certain planets. This rulership only applies in the vimshottari mahadasha scheme, not others. For example, astrologers in East India-Bengal, Assam etc., prefer ashtottari dasha, a cycle of 108 years. In Ashtottari Mahadasha the stars are ruled differently and none are assigned to Ketu. Very few books have been written on this system by other astrologer’s other than the originator.

The KP system has some following in South India. It would be better to avoid this system although it is interesting and logical in its own way.


Punit Pandey said...

Good blog. Keep writing. If it is going to be pure astrology blog, I would like to add it to my blogs magazine -

joe m... said...

could you please eamil me in regards to samhita...i would like to know more and i have some stuff of samhita---best joe

rajas said...

I invite u to participate/contribute in an organised research on naadi astrology by joining yahoo group naadiastrology.
u can contact me at

Anonymous said...

interesting reading vinay. i live in sydney and am wondering if you know of a genuine astrologer who can assist in providing constructive direction in life.

sree said...

Nice informative blog.I heard alot about jyotish yogas from

Anonymous said...

Excellent blog with explanation .Thank you for the detailed research

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