The Essence of Prashna Techniques

The essence of Prashna Techniques
copyright © 2015 Chandrashekhar Sharma

In Vedic astrology, there are many techniques of horary astrology which go under the generic name of Prashna. These range from “Daivagya Vallabha” of Varāha Mihira, to Kerala Ramal Prashna and encompasses in its fold, other systems like “Prashna Mārg” which derives some principles from Brihajjataka to varied forms of “nimitta” (incidents) and “shakuna” (omens) mentioned in Brihat Samhita, on to the Prashna Tājik system of astrology, which elaborates on the “Varshaphala” or annual horoscopy. Then there is the K.P. system of horary astrology that is also in vogue in modern times which is a combination of Sage Satyāchārya principles and Jātaka (natal), or Horā system of natal astrology with lordships of dashās (called subs) being allotted in proportion to their Vimshottari dashā periods.

An astrologer is justifiable confused as to which of this he should use should he need to answer a question when the birth details of the Jātaka are not available. He finds different people swearing by different systems as the final word in astrology and his confusion is compounded. I do not myself claim to be the final authority on Prashna, nor do I regularly predict on the basis of Prashna, though sometimes I do find it very useful, especially when the question is such that its answer using regular methods is difficult though not impossible to obtain and that too in a short time.
I am putting below the concept of Prashna astrology and shall try to spell out the logic, where I have been able to fathom the same for benefit of young astrologers who might want to delve deeper in to the science of Prashna. Let me reiterate here that I sometimes use one or the other system for Prashna and am not partial to one or other of them. I try to restrict myself to either of the Chart of the moment analyzed in a fashion similar to natal chart as indicated by Varāha Mihira, or Tājik system of a modified form and must confess that sometimes I do get mindboggling results. I also sometimes use nimitta system if some remarkable event happens at the time the question is asked.

The entire system of Prashna cannot be explained in one article, and there are many standard books available on the subject these are: “Daivagya Vallabha”, Prashna Tantra (English translation of chapter on Prashna from Tājik, by B V Raman) or “Tājik Neelkanthi”, “Prashna Mārg”, “Narapati Jay Charchā”, “Hāyana Ratna”, “Kerala Ramala Paddhati”, “Krishnamurthy Paddhati” primers, “Brihat Samhitā” and so on, which elaborate at length on the various systems and those desirous of delving deeper in the subject may like to read these and understand the subject in depth.
The basic concept behind Prashna is that formation of a Prashna (question) in the mind is akin to pregnancy, the question itself being similar to baby in womb, and asking of the question is similar to birth of the query. Therefore the chart cast at the time of asking of the question can be analyzed in a fashion similar to analysis of a natal chart to indicate the results of the question. This is generally followed in Daivagya Vallabha type of analysis of Prashna chart, where the Prashna chart (chart cast when a Prashna is asked) is analyzed in a manner similar to analysis of a natal chart.

Same principle can also be applied to the Tājik system of analysis. However some learned think that the chart be cast when the astrologer thinks about giving out the prediction for the question asked and the reason is the below shloka appearing in “Tājik Neelkanthi”:

ऋजुरयमनृजुर्वाऽयं प्रष्टव पूर्ं परीक्ष्य लग्नबलवत्।
गणकेन फलं र्वच्यं दैर्ं तच्चित्तगं स्फुरच्चत॥१॥

ṛjurayamanṛjurvā’yaṁ praṣṭā pūrvaṁ parīkṣya lagnabalāt |
gaṇakena phalaṁ vācyaṁ daivaṁ taccittagaṁ sphurati ||1||


Meaning: The astrologer should first assess if the querent is honest or deceptive from the strength of the Lagna (ascendant) because the prediction that is to be given, arises in his mind.

The argument is that since the results arise in the mind of the astrologer, only when he wants to answer the question should the chart be cast and that might be applicable in the modern times when the query could be put through e-mail or on phone. There is only one small issue here and that is how will he analyze strength of the Lagna (Ascendant), without casting a chart at the moment of hearing of the Prashna? An astrologer may choose any of the methods that he thinks is right. I have seen either of the two methods (ie Daivagya Vallabha or Tājik) give somewhat fairly accurate results, when the astrologer is truly desirous of helping the querent in distress.

There is some difference in the two methods in analysis of the Prashna chart, as Daivagya Vallabha advises to look at the nimitta and shakuna observed at the time of query, as also the first letter of the question asked by the querent, and decide whether the result of the Prashna will be auspicious or inauspicious. Tājik systems opines that one should first find out if the querent is sincere in his query or is a deceptive person who is asking the question to mock the astrologer or test his knowledge and answer the query only if the querent is sincere. Those desirous of understanding the nimitta, shakuna and assessment from 1st letter of query can read about this in depth from Brihat Samhitā, Prashna Mārg, Kerala Ramal Paddhati etc.

If we look at the Tajik system, it is advised to first verify the sincerity of the querent through analysis of the Ascendant and certain methodology is prescribed. So, how is it to be understood whether the querent is honest in query, or deceptive, from lagna?

If Moon occupies the lagna as Saturn occupies any of the Kendras (squares) while Mercury is combust and Moon occupying the ascendant is aspected by Mars or Mercury with even aspect (7th house aspect). Mercury is combust in proximity of Sun so both Moon and Lagna will be under aspect of malefic whether Mars or Mercury aspect the Lagna with 7th house aspect and Saturn occupying the Kendra will be Paraspara (mutual) karaka to them thus making the Lagna extremely weak and so the question might not be sincerely put, or put to test the astrologer, then it should not be answered. Again if any of the Jupiter or Mercury aspecting the 7th lord with inimical aspect (ie square) would mean the querent is not sincere. If Lagna is occupied by a malefic the query should be thought to be put to test the astrologer.

My personal opinion is that, though indicative of intent of the querent, it can also be indicative of the results obtainable by the querent depending on placement of other planets. We can see that even the indications where answers should not be given are later on contradicted by combinations that indicate results of malefics placed in the lagna. Now if due to malefic in lagna one is not to answer the query, why should later on the Tājik texts talk of results obtained by the querent when malefic is placed in lagna? I think the astrologer should answer the query to the best of ability, if he thinks that it should be answered as the prediction is said to arise in the mind of the astrologer and which he is said to give out, as indicated in the shloka from “Tājik Neelkanthi”, quoted earlier.

Let us now understand some of the principles used in both the systems of Prashna.

1) The lagna (ascendant) is assumed to be the querent or the person on whose behalf the question is being asked.
2) Rāshi rising by head in lagna are indicative of good results. Human rāshis in lagna also give good results, if aspected by benefics.
3) If the rising sign is a Chara (cardinal) sign the situation about which question is asked will change.
4) If the rising sign is a Sthira (fixed) sign, the situation queried about will not change.
5) If the sign rising is a Dwisvabhāva (dual) sign, the situation will change but with some difficulty.
6) If the Lord of the lagna and that bhāva about which the question is asked (known as Kāryesha) are aspecting own bhāvas, each other’s bhāvas or each other good result is assured.
7) If both lagna and Moon receive aspect of benefics the results are good.

Now the difference is in the matter of aspects. In the Daivagya Vallabha system, aspects are in accordance with the regular Vedic aspects and results are primarily based on the nature of the planets.

However in Tajik system of astrology, unlike Vedic astrology, there are no special aspects of Mars, Jupiter and Saturn. All planets aspect the 3rd, 11th, 5th, and the 9th bhāvas from themselves. These aspects are treated as benefic aspects, while their square aspects (1st 4th, 7th, and 10th) are treated as inimical aspects. Within the benefic aspects, the 3rd and 11th are treated as indirect friendly (benefic) aspects while the 5th and 9th are direct friendly (benefic) aspects. Amongst the inimical aspects the 1st and the 7th house aspects are directly inimical and the 4th as well as 10th house aspects are indirectly inimical.

The bhāvas indicate mostly the same things in both the systems and are more or less identical with the standard Vedic astrology. In some cases they might appear different but are only extended logic of the bhāvas and nothing more. We shall see some of the bhāvas related with the questions that might be asked, to understand this.


The analysis of the Horary chart on the basis of Daivagya Vallabha principles being similar to the natal horoscopy, we shall now try to understand how it is done in Tajik, albeit in brief.

An important factor considered in Tajik, besides the way aspects are understood, is that of orb of influence of planets and whether the aspect is applying or separating. In Tajik it is assumed that a planet can influence another planet only within certain degrees, this phenomenon is called “DeeptāMsha”, or orb of influence.

If a planet that is slow mover is in higher degrees and the one that is faster in lesser degrees, and also has an aspect on the slower planet, the results are presumed to be good if they are also within their orb of influence. Such an aspect is called “Itthshāla” or “Muthashila”, while if the position is reversed it becomes a separating aspect and is called Isārapha or Musaripha and its results are negative.

The orbs of influence (degrees from the planet on both sides that its influence is felt) are given below.

I am sure everyone who is an astrologer knows the relative speeds of planets, yet for record let us understand that their speeds are in the ascending order of Moon-Mercury-Venus-Sun-Mars-Jupiter-Saturn.

Again one has to understand that even if the fast mover planet is in earlier rāshi while the slow mover planet is in next rāshi, but within the DeeptāMsha, Itthshāla is said to take place as the fast mover is going to meet the slow mover soon so applying aspect is occurring. Now if such planets are within a degree of each other, the full or Poorna (full) Itthshāla is said to occur which promises almost immediate good results of the question asked. If the situation is reverse that is the fast mover is ahead and slow mover is behind, Musaripha yoga is said to take place which indicates negative results.

An example of both the yogas is given in the charts below. First chart indicates the Itthshāla across rāshis between Moon and Mercury and also Poorna Itthshāla between Venus and Mars when in aspect and within the orb of influence:


Moon 26 degrees Capricorn    Mercury 2 degrees Aquarius
Venus 15 degrees Aquarius     Mars 15 degrees 12 minutes Aries

Moon at 26 degrees in Capricorn, though not aspecting Mercury in Aquarius which is slower than Moon, as Mercury is 6 degrees ahead of Moon, thus within the orb of influence of Moon, therefore there is Itthshāla between Moon and Mercury. Again Venus has 3rd house aspect on Mars and is 12 minutes behind Mars who is slower mover than Venus who is relatively faster mover thus being in both aspect and within one degree so not only is this Itthshāla but Poorna Itthshāla.

Now we shall look at Isārapha/Musaripha yogas in the next chart. Here we can see that Moon a fast moving planet is within 3 degrees of Mercury in the same bhāva but it has more degrees (29) than Mercury (26), thus Mercury will never catch up with Moon and thus this is an Isārapha/ Musaripha yoga. Similarly Mars in 15 degrees, though aspecting Venus (15 degrees 12 minutes), Mars being a slow mover, though within 12 minutes of Venus the fast mover, the aspect being separating aspect, yoga thus caused will qualify to become Isārapha/ Musaripha yoga.
Essence of Prashna Techniques

Moon 29 degrees Capricorn     Mercury 26 degrees Capricorn
Venus 15 degrees 12 minutes    Aquarius Mars 15 degrees Libra

We must remember that though in Tajik system of astrology, there are 16 different yogas, in Prashna part of Tajik not all are used. Itthshāla/ Muthashila, Isārapha/Musaripha and Kambool (also sometimes called Kabool) yogas (formed with Moon) are the yogas that are predominantly used in Tajik system of Prashna.

Kambool yoga is formed when the Lord of the lagna and Lord of the bhāva about which query is made (called Kāryesha) are in Itthshāla yoga and Moon also is in Itthshāla with one of them. Depending on whether the planets involved in Kambool with Moon, and Moon itself, are in exaltation it is called Uttam Kambool and so on, till Moon not being strong the yoga is called ordinary Kambool. It is obvious that if Moon is in Itthshāla with both Lagnesh and Kāryesha and in strength it will be the most powerful of the Kambool yogas. Results of this yoga are good. An example of Kambool/ Kabool yoga is given below.

Here we have to understand that in Tajik, 9th bhāva is primarily related to travels, dug water wells, pilgrimages, temples and religion etc. while 10th with work of father.

In the next example, the question being about travel or pilgrimage, the planets involved will be Venus as Lagna lord and Mercury as lord of the 9th. They do have aspect between them and Mercury being in 14 degrees is behind of Venus in 18 degrees. Moon with 10 degrees is in aspect with both of them and within DeeptāMsha and therefore this comes under the definition of Kambool yoga and the query will fructify.


Moon 10 degrees Cancer  Venus 18 degrees Cancer
Mercury 14 degrees Aries

Here what is more important is Moon having Itthshala with at least one of the planets who are having Itthshala between them to grant strength to the yoga. This also indicates the importance of Moon in Tajik system of Prashna, and Prashna system in general. As astrologers get more interested in learning about this system of astrology they will find many yogas that indicate good results if both Lagna and Moon are gaining strength, and that is natural as the query itself arises in mind and Moon is also the child (relevant in balariishta), so early resolution of query will naturally be influenced by its strength.

Next to be understood is the concept of the planets concerned not being in direct aspect but another planet having aspect with both, placed between the two, and being within DeeptāMsha of both the planets and thus being capable of transferring the influence (called Tej) of one planet to another. In such a case also, the results are realized but through agency of someone representing the planet which transfers the influence. There are two types of such yogas called Nakta and Yamayā. In the former the planet between the two is a planet that is faster than the two, while in the later it is slow mover than the two unaspecting planets. An example of Nakta yoga is given below.

Moon 8 degrees Sagittarius   Jupiter 12 degrees Pisces
Mercury 10 degrees Leo

Here, let us assume the question is about marriage of the querist. The querist as we know is represented by Lagna and the Lagna lord Mercury a fast mover is in 10 degrees, while the would be spouse will be represented by the 7th bhāva whose lord is Jupiter, a slower moving planet in 12 degrees, so in right degrees for an Itthshāla, however there is no aspect between them. However Moon who is faster than both the planets and in lesser degrees that both of them is between the two and aspects Mercury by 9th house aspect and simultaneously Jupiter by square aspect. He is also within DeeptāMsha of both of them. Now here comes the concept of transference of power or energy/ Tej. Here Moon in 8 degrees takes the energy of Mercury (another relatively faster planet) and passes it on to Jupiter, the slowest amongst the three planets, thus giving rise to Nakta yoga. This will therefore indicate that the object of the query shall be achieved through agency of a third person. Moon being karaka for mother and a female planet, gain of spouse will be through agency of mother or some female.

Let us now understand how the Yamayā yoga operates. This yoga, as we have already learnt, has its basis on a slower moving planet than those not aspecting each other, coming between them and aspecting both being within the DeeptāMsha of both, thus being able to transfer the Tej (energy/influence) from the faster moving (amongst the two non aspecting planets) to the slower planet, thus leading to achievement of the object of query. We shall see how this occurs in the example chart below.

Moon 6 degrees Virgo  Jupiter 10 degrees Cancer
Venus 16 degrees Aries

Here the question being of gaining kingdom or position of influence or promotion at work, the Lagna lord Venus (Lagnesh) and the 10th lord Moon (Kāryesha as the question is about recognition (Man) or Kingdom (Rajya)), both of which are represented by the 10th bhava, are the planets that should ideally be aspecting each other, for enough strength in the yoga to grant the desired object. However though Moon with 6 degrees and Venus with 16 degrees are within deeptamsha (orb of influence) they do not aspect each other. However we can see that Jupiter who is with 10 degrees and slower than both is aspecting both the planets (by 10th and 3rd aspect respectively) and being between the two can get the Tej from Moon, who is behind him and pass it on to Venus whom he aspects and who is ahead of him, thus indicating fructification of the query. We can see here that Jupiter only operates as the transfer of influence of Moon to Venus. Now as Jupiter represents a minister or secretary, the object of desire will be realized through agency of minister to king or someone who is at senior position in management (in case of promotion) can be predicted.
The crux of analysis of Tajik method of Prashna is finding out the correct Bhava which is related to the query and after analyzing the Lagna, as indicated earlier. One should come to a conclusion only after finding out if the Lagna lord and Karyesh aspect own or each others house or each other and if they are in Itthashala or Musaripha. It is a good idea to find out the strength of yoga indicated by looking at whether the Lagna is Chara, Dwisvabhava or Sthira as then something happening, happening with some trouble and thing remaining static would be indicated. Sheershodaya lagna will add to the strength. And finally look for good yogas between the Lagnesha and Karyesh (the lord of the bhava relevant to query) and their fortification or otherwise by Nakta, Yamaya or Kamboo yogas, to finally arrive at the answer to the query.

Here we should also understand that though the square aspects are generally inimial, in case of benefics the malfeasance is fairly reduced and if simultneously yoga for fructification is there and should Lagnesha and Karyesh be aspecting each other, each other’s house or own house, the result will be good, even if on a bit reduced scale.

Astrologers have a different opinion on how to determine when the results will be obtained, in case of absence of Poorna Itthshala. The general guide line is that the difference in degrees between the Lagnesha and Karyesha in Itthashala will indicate the time. Some opine that in case of Chara rashis being involved in Lagna one should say the difference of amsha indicates days, Dwivabhava rashis shall indicate weeks and Sthira rashis indicates month. Some learned are of the opinion that the navamsha past (ie each rashi consists of 9 navamsa’s) in Prashna lagna are the best indication of when the object of the query will fructify and especially in case of question from a pregnant lady that does seem logical. However, all this should be applied with a sense of proportion, based on the type of query and not by rote.

There are many yogas and types of questions that can be answered using both the Daivagya Vallabha or the Tajik approach, but the most important thing is understanding of bhavas in depth and then the desire to answer the question through Prashna that will dictate the accuracy or otherwise of the prediction. I would urge the astrologers interested in learning this branch to read as much text on the subject as possible and try to understand the underlying principles before making a firm prediction only from Prashna. I generally base my predictions on natal chart, but resort to Prashna when the urge to look at Prashna gets hold of my mind on hearing some query and even after that I analyze the natal chart to be certain that answers of both converge before venturing out with the prediction. However, there are many who predict solely on the basis of Prashna and there is nothing wrong in that approach.

I would have liked to write more on the subject but then paucity of space and time both prohibit me from doing so and I trust the readers will understand this. If one really wants to write on Prashna at great depth, that would mean writing a separate book on this and that is not the mandate of this web site which is for those who already have some basic knowledge of astrology and want to know more on less commented and elaborated upon, aspects of Vedic astrology. So I close this article on Prashna here and hope this helps astrologers who read it.


Chandrashekhar Sharma
copyright © 2015 Chandrashekhar Sharma

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Decoding Vipareeta Rāj Yoga

Vipareeta Rāj Yoga

The much talked about, and many a time much-misunderstood yoga in Vedic astrology is the Vipareeta Rāj Yoga. Let us first understand the meaning of Vipareeta, in the astrological context.

The word Vipareeta has many meanings in the Sanskrit language, and in astrological context, it would mean:

1) Inverse or reverse motion.
2) Being the reverse of anything, acting in a contrary manner, opposite, contrary to, in the matter of results.

Therefore any type of planetary combination that can give results that are contrary to expectation can fall under the definition of Vipareeta Yoga. Will it convert into a Vipareeta Rāj Yoga is something about which different Āchāryas (learned astrologers) have different opinions. It is only if we understand the underlying principles behind what is being stated by the sages, that we can apply the yogas to live charts and assess the probable results.

In case of the first meaning, Kālidāsa the author of “Uttara Kālāmrita” says:
२ ६

vakrī svoccabalaḥ savakrasahite madhyaṁ balaṁ tuṅgabhe
vakrī nīcabalaḥ svanīcabhavane vakrībalaṁ tuṅgajam |
uccasthena yuto’rdhavīryamiti cennīce tu śunyaṁ balaṁ
mitraiḥ pāpakhagaiḥ śubhai ripukhagairyukto’pi cārdhaṁ balaṁ ||

uttara kālāmṛta |2|6||

Meaning: A retrograde planet is equal in strength to an exalted planet. The planet conjunct a retrograde planet gets medium strength. A retrograde planet if also, simultaneously, in its rāshi of exaltation loses its strength (is weak as if in debility), while if in its rāshi of debility its strength is equal to being exalted. A planet conjunct an exalted planet gets half the strength (of exaltation) while if conjunct a planet in debility it loses all is strength (strength is zero).

Here, in the first part of the shloka, the learned Kālidāsa is using the Vipareeta principle for retrograde planets. He seems to suggest that since the retrograde planet is strong, being placed in its rāshi of exaltation, it should become stronger but the Vipareeta (opposite) results will ensue. Again, by same logic he says that a retrograde planet in its debility, where logically it should be weak, will gain strength due to Vipareeta principle.

The second meaning of Vipareeta is brought out, when the learned Kālidāsa says: ४ २२

randhreśo vyayaṣaṣṭhago ripupatau randhre vyaye vā sthite |
riḥpheśo’pi tathaiva randhraripubhe yasyāsti tasminvadet |

anyonyarkṣagatā nirīkṣaṇayutāścānyairayuktekṣitā jāto’sau nṛpati praśastavibhavo rājādhirājeśvaraḥ


Meaning: If the lord of the 8th bhāva occupies the 12th or the 6th bhāva or should the 6th lord occupy the 8th or the 12th bhāva or should the 12th bhāva lord occupies the 8th or the 6th bhāva and should these lord be connected to each other by aspect, conjunction or exchange of house but be unaspected by other planets, the Jātaka becomes a very wealthy king of kings.

Here the Vipareeta yoga principle is applied in a different manner by the learned Kālidāsa. The basis of this yoga is two basic principles of astrology:

1) Any planet placed in the 6th, the 8th or the 12th bhāva loses its strength.
2) The lords of the 6th, the 8th or the 12th bhāva harm/weaken the bhāva occupied.

Thus logically there should be an extreme loss of strength for the lords of the 6th, the 8th or the 12th bhāvas and harm to the 6th, the 8th, or the 12th bhāva when they occupy bhāva other than their own bhāva. This would mean that problems like disease, litigations, health issues or high expenditure etcetera that trouble the Jātaka should become more severe. However learned Kālidāsa opines that these results are reversed and cause the Jātaka to become a king, especially if these lords are also connected to each other, by aspect or exchange and themselves be unaspected by other planets.

Somewhat similar principle for planets in debility is enunciated by Sage Pārāshara in the 39th chapter of his astrological magnum opus “Pārāshari”, popularly known as “Brihat Pārāshara Horāshāstra”, is now being given in the shloka below:

ṣaṣṭhe’ṣṭame tṛtīye vā sva svanīcagatā grahāḥ |
lagnaṁ paśyet svabhoccastho lagnapo rājyayogadaḥ ||


Meaning: When planets in debility occupy the 6th, the 8th, the 2nd or the 3rd bhāva while the lagna lord occupies its rāshi of exaltation or own rāshi and aspects the lagna, such yoga is capable of bestowing kingdom upon the Jātaka.
Sage Pārāshara gives us a different application of the Vipareeta principle when he tells that planets in debility placed in dusthāna (negative houses) give rise to Rāj yoga, with a rider that the lord of the ascendant should simultaneously aspect the ascendant. So here two different set of principles are being used.

First is the Vipareeta principle in operation:

1) It is said that planets in debility harm the indications of the houses occupied, generally giving negative results.
2) Similar are the results when planets occupy the 6th and 8th bhāvas as the planets become weak due to their placement in these most malefic of trika bhāvas, and in turn render the bhāvas owned by the planets in those bhāvas, weak.
3) The bhāvas 3rd and 2nd, when occupied by planets in debility, should, normally, reduce valour and accumulated wealth.
However due to the Vipareeta (contrary) principle, Sage Pārāshara opines these planets shall not give negative results, but on the contrary, give good results.

The second principle used is of a bhāva lord aspecting own bhāva strengthening the bhāva:

1) Here we can observe that it is the lagna lord in strength, by virtue of occupying own or exaltation rāshi, which aspects lagna making it strong.
2) The lagna bhāva, also being representative of Ātmabala, thus fortified on getting aspected by own lord gives confidence in own capability to the Jātaka.

Thus these two principles, operating in tandem, resulting in such combination of planets and bhāvas (yoga) being capable of granting a kingdom to the Jātaka.

The sage makes the principle of very weak lords of dusthāna giving good results when occupying certain bhāvas; amply clear in the next shloka that reads:

ṣaṣṭhā’ṣṭamavyayādhīśā nīcasthā ripubhe‘stagāḥ |
svoccasvabhagalagneśo lagnaṁ paśyaṁśca rājyadaḥ ||

39|20pārāśarī ||

Meaning: If lord of the lagna in own or exaltation rāshi aspects the lagna while the lord of 6th, the 8th or the 12th bhāva are placed in their rāshi of debility or enemy, or are combust the yoga grants kingdom to the Jātaka.

Again, Sage Pārāshara tells that if the lords of 6th, the 8th or the 12th are placed in their rāshi of debility, enemy or if they are combust, they confer a kingdom on the Jātaka. Here the principle is more clear as the lords of 6th, 8th or 12th would be either placed in good bhāvas or in another trika bhāva, or be otherwise very weak. This weakness will in turn reverse the ill effects of the trika bhāva lord’s occupation of good bhāvas.

The yoga is further fortified by lagna lord himself being strong and aspecting lagna resulting in the grant of the kingdom, to the Jātaka.

dusthāneśo’pi nīcastho yadi lagnaṁ prapaśyati |
tadā’pi rājyayogaḥ syāditi jñeyaṁ dvijottama ||


Meaning: Oh great amongst Brahmins know that a planet in debility, even if it be a lord of dusthāna (3, 6, 8, 11, 12th), aspecting the ascendant results in a Rāj yoga.

We find Sage Pārāshara further elaborating the principle of a lord of dusthāna in debility, placed in an auspicious bhāva, causing contrary auspicious results instead of harming the bhāva occupied, by reiterating that even a lord of trika bhāva aspecting the Lagna, when in debility, shall grant kingdom to the Jātaka.

Now let us see what the venerated Satyāchārya, who is acknowledged as the final arbiter of astrological principle by even Āchārya Varāha Mihira in his “Brihat Jātaka”, tells about results given by the trika (6th, 8th and 12th) bhāvas:

॥ व्ययाष्टषष्ठभावेषु वैपरीत्यमाह सत्याचायय॥
|| vyayāṣṭaṣaṣṭhabhāveṣu vaiparītyamāha satyācārya ||

Meaning: Sage Satyāchārya told about contrary results of the 12th, 6th and 8th bhāvas, in this manner:

सौम्ााः पुष्ष्टिं पापााः ष्वपयययिं सिंष्ितााः ग्रहााः कुयुयाः।
मूत्यायष्िषु ष्िधिान्त्याष्रषु भावेषूत्क्रमात्फलिं िद्युष्रष्त॥३॥

saumyāḥ puṣṭiṁ pāpāḥ viparyayaṁ saṁśritāḥ grahāḥ kuryuḥ|

mūrtyādiṣu nidhanāntyāriṣu bhāveṣūtkramātphalaṁ dadyuriti||3||

Meaning: Benefic planets strengthen the bhāvas occupied whereas the malefic planets harm the bhāvas occupied in case of lagna and other bhāvas. However in case of planets occupying the 8th, the 12th and the 6th bhāvas contrary results are obtained.

Here Sage Satyāchārya is making the basic principle behind why planets in debility can give good results in trika bhāvas absolutely clear, by stating that malefic planets occupying the trika bhāvas shall give contrary results. This means auspicious results shall ensue.

Having so far understood the support in the astrological classics to Vipareeta principles, let us now once again try to understand the reasons for the results of these yogas. Let us also try to understand the correct interpretation of the liberally used phrase “Vipareeta Rāj Yoga”, used to describe such yogas and their variations.

When the word Rāj yoga occurs in astrological texts, the tendency of astrologers is always to assume someone being extremely wealthy, as “Rājā” does mean a king. However, we must also understand that being a king is not only about wealth. Primarily it is about being accepted as being a leader by a group of people and voluntarily being given authority to adjudicate over matters of that group, including, but not only, imposing of taxes to sustain the system, administration and so on. So, in short, a Rāj yoga should be understood to be a yoga indicative of the Jātaka rising in life to a stage of financial level, or wielding power over a group of people, much above what was expected on account the financial or another status of his family, at the time of his birth.
In case of Vipareeta Rāj yoga it is observed that many a time, the Jātaka is propelled to a higher level of recognition either unexpectedly, or for some inexplicable reason. Sometimes,

the person who was in line to get that recognition does not get it due to sudden setbacks like loss of reputation, health issues, death etc., and the Jātaka gets the recognition, in his stead. It is also possible that he changes his career unexpectedly which contributes to his rise.

We must also remember that the extent of rising will also be influenced by other strengths of the chart of the Jātaka. It may not be out of place to mention here that “Chandrakalā-Nādi” aka “Deva-Keralam” tells that in Kaliyuga (present times) in a chart with 3 or 4 planets in exaltation, it is desirable if there is also a planet in debility for the full good results attributed to the exalted planets to come through. I would also like to bring it to the notice of the learned astrologers the basic principle that if a planet is in debility in navāmsha, the results of its debility only will obtain, even if it is in exaltation in the rāshi chart. Similarly, a planet in exaltation in navāmsha shall give results of exaltation even when placed in debility in the rāshi chart.

Having seen the different ways Vipareeta yoga can operate, an inquiring mind must ask if results of all of them can be similar and can all of them give extremely positive good results? In my opinion, the placement of one trika lord in another trika bhāva, while being of a milder form of beneficial yoga may not qualify as a powerful Rāj yoga by itself. The final results will have much to do with the bhāva owned by that planet and the bhāva occupied by it, as also other strength of the chart, especially the lagna. An example would be when 6th lord occupies the 8th bhāva. While this placement, of one trika lord in another trika bhāva, can give good financial prosperity to the Jātaka, it could also indicate some acute health issue becoming chronic through neglect on the part of Jātaka. In respect of planets in debility acting as exalted, if retrograde, this seems to be right on account of the planet at such time being away from Sun and the “vakra bala” (strength of retrogression) is said to be almost equal to that of a planet in exaltation.

However, I am not very convinced if an exalted planet in retrogression will give results of being in debility. I would think it will become extremely powerful and, if a malefic, cause much harm while if a benefic give good results. The exception here is Saturn, who is said to give results that are Vipareeta (reverse) to those given by malefic planets. Even here, while fortifying the bhāva occupied, Saturn is more than likely to cause severe harm to the bhāvas aspected.

So does this mean the Vipareeta principle is wrong? No, this in my opinion means one has to apply it with prudence and the most powerful Vipareeta yoga which can rightly be called a Vipareeta Rāj yoga will occur and show its results in real life, when lord of a trika sthāna (bhāva) will occupy an auspicious bhāva in debility/being rendered weak (generally by conjunction with a node) or when a debilitated/ weakened lord of an auspicious bhāva shall occupy any one of the trika sthānas. The effect would be heightened when the auspicious bhāva involved are the trines, squares and the 2nd or 3rd bhāvas and their lords.

Having thus understood the underlying principles of the Vipareeta Rāj yoga, let us see the charts of some well-known personalities in whose charts it occurs, and whose charts and lives are out there on the net for anyone to verify.

As befits our subject of astrology, let us begin with the horoscope of William John Warner AKA Count Louis Hamon or Cheiro.

He was known for his mind-boggling palmistry predictions and has also written books on palmistry, numerology and astrology. Below is the chart.

It can be seen that the lord of the 6th bhāva (a trika bhāva), in debility is placed in the 9th bhāva an auspicious bhāva which is a trine, resulting in a powerful Vipareeta Rāj yoga.

I am sure that most of the astrologers, both budding and veterans would have studied a bit of palmistry, or more when young if not for knowledge, then at least to impress their friends and would instantly connect Cheiro with palmistry.

Cheiro is said to have been born in an impoverished family in Dublin, Ireland and not have received much parental affection. There is a story that he was kidnapped by Gypsies when young, though it is possible he fled home as a stowaway on some ship as, he has himself said that he worked on a Bombay port in India where he met his Indian guru, who is said to have taught him astrology, palmistry and numerology. He claimed he had access to ancient Indian books written in gold and learnt much of the art of prediction from it.

It appears that the powerful Vipareeta Rāj yoga in his chart which rises due to the 6th lord in debility occupying the 9th bhava, and another Vipareeta Rāj yoga caused by lord of the 10th, Sun in 12th bhava in debility, made him rise from being a noniety to the most famous Palmist in the western world who had a wide following of famous European and American clients during the late 19th and early 20th centuries. He read palms and told the fortunes of famous celebrities like Mark Twain, W. T. Stead, Sarah Bernhardt, Mata Hari, Oscar Wilde, Grover Cleveland, Thomas Edison, the Prince of Wales, General Kitchener, William Ewart Gladstone, and Joseph Chamberlain. Even if he never became a king he did assume the name and title Count Lois Hamon.

Next chart to draw our interest must be that of “Fidel Alejandro Castro Ruz”, known to most part of the world as Fidel Castro the Prime Minister and then President (virtual) dictator of Cuba who has ruled over the country since, and is still its de-facto head.

Fidel Castro was an illegitimate 3rd child of Angel Castro and his servant “Lina Ruiz”. His father married “Lina” only after birth of her 7th child, after divorcing his wife Maria. Thus it is apparent that none could have even dreamt that he would one day become the dictator of Cuba, who could not be dislodged even by the mighty U.S.A. and shall serve his country in that capacity till he decided to step down due to ill health and handed over reigns to his brother Raul Castro.

We can see, here, that the lord of the 8th bhāva Jupiter is in debility and occupies the auspicious 9th bhāva, giving rise to a powerful Vipareeta Rāj yoga which gets fortified as Jupiter aspects both the Lagna and the Lagna lord giving immense strength to the lagna of Jātaka (Castro), and granting him kingdom of Cuba. His journey to becoming the dictator of Cuba makes interesting reading, and does seem to support my theory of unexpected developments propelling the Jātaka of Vipareeta Rāj yoga, to a position of eminence.

On 3/10/1952, Batista seized power in Cuba when Castro formed an insurrection group. He led a small group in a revolution on 7/26/1953. Arrested, he was found guilty and jailed. While in prison, he read and studied history, philosophy and politics up to his release on 5/15/1955. On 7/07/1955, Castro left Cuba for Mexico City, where he met “Che Guevara”.

On 12/05/1956 they began the revolutionary invasion. After defeat, he fled on 12/31/1957. It is interesting that his Jupiter Mahādashā (period) began in 1955, when he had to flee Cuba which led to his meeting with “Che Guevara” and that he was able to overthrow Batista regime in 1959, becoming Prime minister the when his Jupiter-Saturn-Mars-Ketu-Jupiter period on 16th of February 1959

From those who were kings or were almost like kings in their own field of expertise, we shall move to the field of acting to round up charts illustrating the powerful Vipareeta yoga. This later chart will indicate the difference in strength of the Vipareeta Rāj Yoga when the lagna does not get further fortified (a bhāva gets fortified when aspected by own lord, Jupiter or Mercury).

Let us now see the chart of “George Clooney”, the heartthrob of many young girls, especially in the western part of the world and who was voted the sexiest man alive in a survey conducted by People magazine. I am including this chart for one dear student of mine who is enamoured of George Clooney and also since it does help illustrate the difference in degrees in various Vipareeta Rāj Yogas, in the intensity of their results.


We observe in this chart that lord of auspicious kendra (10th bhāva) and the 3rd bhāva, is placed in its rāshi of debility in the 6th bhāva ( a trika bhāva), giving rise to a Vipareeta Rāj Yoga, though the lagna or lagna lord does not receive aspect of its lord, Jupiter or Mercury, thus denying actual kingdom. Add to this the 2nd lord placed in the 12th bhāva in debility giving further strength to Vipareeta Rāj yoga. He also has two planets in exaltation, Sun and Venus which also helps in strengthening the chart. George, though son of a TV personality, only got a chance to work in a small role in a film on horse racing that his uncle wanted to make, though the film never made it to the screen. He took off for Hollywood with only a paltry sum in pocket to stay with his aunt who gave him lodging and job as chauffer. Later he worked as construction worker and worked in some commercials. He began getting bit parts and was part of 15 failed TV pilots. It is interesting that he was voted the sexiest man alive in 1997 when he was running Rāhu-Mars period. Later becoming extremely successful, he went on to win Academy award in 2006.

I trust these charts will help the learned astrologers to understand the finer difference between the Vipareeta Rāj yoga and Vipareeta Yoga. Though the difference is fine we can see that the results, differ in their scale and there is certainly much importance needs to be given when the lagna also gets strength along with a strong Vipareeta Rāj yoga. It is well to remember that the lagna will gain strength when aspected by its lord, Jupiter or Mercury. A strong lagna lord shall also contribute to the strength of the lagna.



Chandrashekhar Sharma
copyright © 2015 Chandrashekhar Sharma

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