Gary Gomes is the current President of the Council of Vedic Astrology. He has been a practicing astrologer since 1990 & has been published in numerous magazines. He teaches Jyotisha through the American College of Vedic Astrology, Kepler College, and Dirah Academy International. He has special interest in some of the lesser explored systems of Vedic astrology, such as Jaimini and Chandra Kala Nadi techniques. He can be contacted for readings or lessons at firstname.lastname@example.org or at www.crystalexpectations.net & http://www.councilvedicastrology.org
This article will show how to use the Jaimini Chara Dasas as a predictive tool.
The Chara dasa system of prediction is a general use Mahadasa, similar in its flexibility to the Vimshottari dasa system that works very well for most predictive patterns. The next section will provided a brief recap of the way in which this system is set up, based on principles taught by K.N. Rao on his trips to the United States in the mid-1990’s.
A Brief Overview Of Jaimini Astrology
Jaimini is predominantly practiced in the Andhra Pradesh area of India, but its governing principles are also discussed in detail in the encyclopedic compendium of astrological techniques, the Brihat Parasara Hora Sastra. The BPHS has enough material in it to keep most of us studying Jyotisha busy for several life times. The Jaimini factors are not referred to specifically as Jaimini indicators. However, when one reads P. S. Sastri’s translation of the Jaimini Sutras, or either of Mr. Rao’s texts on Jaimini Astrology, one realizes that these principles are, in fact Jaimini principles. There are other Jaimini texts which have emerged over the years (including The Jaimini Upadesa Sutras written by Sanjay Rath, Jaimini Sutramitrum by Iranganti Rangacharya and a recent translation in process by Ernst Wilhelm of the United States).
However, Mr. Rao’s texts go the furthest in explaining how the Jaimini dasa systems work, and are still, in my opinion, the clearest exposition of Jaimini principles available in the West.
The following are the major differences between Jaimini and “standard” Parasara astrology:
- The use of sign mahadasas (Chara, Sthira and Shoola dasas are the best known, but there are approximately 44 mahadasas used in Jaimini astrology);
- The use of padas. Padas are indicators in the signs. The best way to explain a pada is to illustrate it. Suppose we are looking for the marriage pada in a chart. The seventh house is the marriage house in a standard chart. Let us assume we have a Libra ascendant. Aries is the seventh house in this chart. The ruler of the seventh house is therefore Mars. Then let us assume that the Graha Mars is in the sign Capricorn. This sign is ten signs away from Aries. We then count ten signs from Capricorn to get the pada for marriage matters. Thus, the sign Libra is the marriage indicator for this chart. Issues connected with marriage (and partnerships in general) will reach fruition during the mahadasa or bhuktis of Libra.
- The extensive use of karakas. There are karakas in Parasara astrology, but these are based on certain “natural” karakas of the planets. For example, Venus is the natural karaka for marriage and Mars is the karaka for brothers. However, in Jaimini astrology, the Karakas can be any of the planets. (I choose to follow Mr. Rao in choosing to exclude the North and South Lunar Node — Rahu and Ketu — as Jaimini karakas for most purposes. There are seven karakas which are judged in terms of the planet which is highest in degree to that which is lowest in degree, regardless of sign placement. The karakas are, in descending order, the atma karaka (the indicator of self), the amatya karaka (the indicator of career); the bhatri karaka (the indicator of siblings and father); the matri karaka (the indicator of mother and education); the pitri (Or putri) karaka (the indicator of children, intelligence and creativity); the gnati karaka (the indicator of strife, disease, and spiritual sadhana); and the stri or dara karaka, the indicator of marriage (and partnerships in general). Most authors, Parasara included, mention 7 and 8 karakas. In the Jaimini Upadesa Sutras, both 7 and 8 karakas are mentioned, indicating to me that both must have some utility for interpretation. NOTE: The dasas of Rasis which include either the Atma Karaka or Gnati Karaka are considered to have more difficulties than normal, and the dasas of rasis that contain the amatya karaka, matri karaka, putri karaka, and dara karaka are generally favorable. The bhatri karaka and combinations of the two groups tend to be neutral in auspiciousness. These karakas are of extreme importance in judging a chart, especially in terms of career potential and, especially, for judging spiritual potential, as indicated in both the Brihat Parasara Hora Sastra and the Jaimini Sutram. Also, although this stance is not universally endorsed, it has also been my experience that the Jaimini karakas work especially well when we analyze the planetary mahadasas and the maturity of planets.
The calculation of the Chara dasas is done as follows:
Sequence of Mahadasas
The dasas start from whichever sign is in the lagna. So, for a Libra ascendant, Libra would be the first mahadasa. For a Virgo ascendant, the first mahadasa would be Virgo, for Aries ascendant the first mahadasa would be Aries. There are no exceptions to this.
The next thing to look at is how to ascertain the direction of the mahadasas. The pattern of the dasa sequences is as follows:
Aries Lagna — Sequence of mahadasas = Aries, Taurus, Gemini, Cancer, Leo, Virgo, Libra, Scorpio, Sagittarius, Capricorn, Aquarius, Pisces.
Taurus Lagna — Sequence = Taurus, Aries, Pisces, Aquarius, Capricorn, Sagittarius, Scorpio, Libra, Virgo, Leo, Cancer, Gemini
For Gemini Lagna — Sequence = Gemini, Taurus, Aries, Pisces, Aquarius, Capricorn, Sagittarius, Scorpio, Libra, Virgo, Leo, Cancer
For Cancer Lagna — Sequence = Cancer, Gemini, Taurus, Aries, Pisces, Aquarius, Capricorn, Sagittarius, Scorpio, Libra, Virgo, Leo
For Leo Lagna — Sequence = Leo, Virgo, Libra, Scorpio, Sagittarius, Capricorn, Aquarius, Pisces, Aries, Taurus, Gemini, Cancer
For Virgo Lagna — Sequence = Virgo, Libra, Scorpio, Sagittarius, Capricorn, Aquarius, Pisces, Aries, Taurus, Gemini, Cancer, Leo
For Libra Lagna — Sequence = Libra, Scorpio, Sagittarius, Capricorn, Aquarius, Pisces, Aries, Taurus, Gemini, Cancer, Leo, Virgo
For Scorpio Lagna — Sequence = Scorpio, Libra, Virgo, Leo, Cancer, Gemini, Taurus, Aries, Pisces, Aquarius, Capricorn, Sagittarius
For Sagittarius Lagna — Sequence = Sagittarius, Scorpio, Libra, Virgo, Leo, Cancer, Gemini, Taurus, Aries, Pisces, Aquarius, Capricorn
For Capricorn Lagna — Sequence = Capricorn, Sagittarius, Scorpio, Libra, Virgo, Leo, Cancer, Gemini, Taurus, Aries, Pisces, Aquarius
For Aquarius Lagna — Sequence = Aquarius, Pisces, Aries, Taurus, Gemini, Cancer, Leo, Virgo, Libra, Scorpio, Sagittarius, Capricorn
For Pisces Lagna — Sequence = Pisces, Aquarius, Capricorn, Sagittarius, Scorpio, Libra, Virgo, Leo, Cancer, Gemini, Taurus, Aries, Pisces
To determine the length of the maha dasas indicated above, look at the placement of the ruler of the signs, and count from the sign in question either forwards or backwards, as cited below. If a planet is in its own sign, it is assigned twelve years.
Aries — Count Forward to Mars’ location, then subtract 1
Taurus — Forward to Venus’ location, then subtract 1
Gemini — Count forward to Mercury’s location, then subtract 1
Cancer — Count backward to the Moon’s location, then subtract 1
Leo — Count backward to the Sun’s location, then subtract 1
Virgo — Count backward to Mercury’s position, then subtract 1
Libra — Count forward to Venus’ location, then subtract 1
Scorpio — Count forward to Mars’ (or Ketu’s) position, then subtract 1*
Sagittarius — Count forward to Jupiter’s position, then subtract 1
Capricorn — Count backward to Saturn’s position, then subtract 1
Aquarius — Count backward to Saturn’s (or Rahu’s) position, then subtract 1*
Pisces — Count backward to Jupiter’s position, then subtract 1
*If there are more planets in the sign in which Mars or Saturn sits, then the counting is done to this sign; if there are more planets in the sign in which Ketu or Rahu sits, the counting is done to that sign.
If Mars is in Scorpio, and Ketu is not, then, Ketu is selected. If Ketu is in Scorpio and Mars is not, then Mars is picked. If both are alone in signs, then determine which among Ketu or Mars is at higher degree. The planet at higher degree is the winner.
If both are at the same degree, then count to the planet at higher minute. If both are at higher minute, count to the sign with higher second. This same way of determining the winning planet, for terms of counting the number of years to be assigned to the sign in question, is to be used for Saturn and Rahu in the case of Aquarius.
The number which results from the counting (including the sign from which the counting starts) is then to subtract 1 from the total. This will give the mahadasa in years.
The following examples will illustrate some of these principles.
Suppose an individual has a Taurus rising sign, with Venus in the fourth house. This makes his first mahadasa Taurus, and it will last for three years (4-1). He has Mars in the twelfth house in Aries; his next mahadasa (Aries) will last for twelve (12) years. Let us assume he has the Planet Jupiter in the third house in Cancer; the next mahadasa (Pisces) will (counting backwards) last for 8 (9-1) years.
Let us now consider the Aquarius mahadasa; this uses the principle that the planet with the higher number of companion planets will be chosen to be the sign to which counting will be done. In our hypothetical example chart, the Rahu is in the same sign (Cancer) with the Sun, Mercury and Jupiter. Saturn is in the same sign with the Moon (in Taurus).
The choice of Rahu as the sign to which one would count to get the mahadasa length is obvious according to the principle already stated. The Aquarius mahadasa (which we count backwards to get), gives us an Aquarius mahadasa of seven (8-1) years.
Jaimini astrology uses a variety of special yogas or combinations which do not exist in other types of Jyotish. The two most unusual (but, in their own way, very logical) are the special combinations which have to do with Saturn and Venus. Venus, in combination with, aspected by or aspecting the Moon, produces a special auspicious combination in Jaimini which manifests during the mahadasa of one of the signs in which the planet sits. (Remember the special aspects which are unique to Jaimini)
Likewise, there is a special combination in Jaimini astrology which makes use of Saturn. In standard Parasara astrology, the planet Saturn is often interpreted as a bringer of hardship, but in the tenth house or when casting an aspect on the Moon, Saturn produces a phenomenal rise to power or intense charisma, respectively.
Likewise, there is a really positive influence when Saturn aspects the Karakamsa sign in the Rasi (natal birth chart). The Karakamsa sign is the sign in which the Atmakaraka planet sits in the Navamsa chart, transferred to the natal chart.
Finally, Upagrahas are a very valuable predictive tool that can be used for enhancing interpretation of Jaimini Chara Dasas.
Let’s look at a chart:
William Rehnquist, former Chief Justice of the Supreme Court:
October 1, 1924, 11:32 AM, Milwaukee, Wisconsin
Rehnquist has had several major achievements in his life, starting in 1952 when he was Class Valedictorian of his graduating class at Stanford Law School.
He was a law clerk for Justice Robert Jackson from 1952-1953.
He was in private practice in Arizona from 1953-1969, serving as legal advisor for Barry Goldwater’s presidential campaign in 1964.
He served as Assistant Attorney General of the United States from 1969-1971 under President Richard Nixon.
On December 10, 1971, he was confirmed as an Associate Justice on the United States Supreme Court and in 1986 he became Chief Justice of the Supreme Court.
In 1999, he presided over the impeachment trial of then President William Jefferson Clinton.
Let’s look at his Chara dasas for these events:
October 1, 1949- October 2, 1958, he was in a Cancer mahadasa.
October 2, 1958 -October 1, 1960, he was in a Gemini mahadasa.
October 1, 1960 – October 2, 1963, he was in a Taurus mahadasa
October 1, 1963 – October 2, 1973, he was in an Aries mahadasa
October 2, 1973 – October 2, 1977, he was in a Pisces mahadasa
October 2, 1977 – October 2, 1982, he was in an Aquarius mahadasa
October 2, 1982 – October 2, 1985, he was in Capricorn mahadasa
October 2, 1985-October 1, 1996, he was in a Sagittarius mahadasa
October 1, 1996 -October 2, 1999, he was in a Scorpio mahadasa
October 1, 1999 – October 2, 2009, he was in a Libra mahadasa
Cancer mahadasa is the natural ninth house mahadasa. Cancer is aspected by Jupiter, his Bhatri (indicator of teacher) planet and Mars (his Gnati or hard work planet); Rahu in the ninth house alone gives great status in life, and its lord Moon (his career indicator planet aspected by Saturn, his Putri Karaka or luck indicator planet). So the ruler of the sign will still have some say in Jaimini astrology and you will see that the karakas work together to support the ruler of the sign. This period, although a period of effort (gnati karaka) and ambition (Bhatri Karaka) would have brought honor (Putri and Amatya Karakas) during its dasa. So, valedictorian and clerking for a Supreme Court justice is a very impressive career start. Cancer is also his 3rd, 5th and 11th arudha, indicating very good luck
Although he was active during his Gemini and Taurus dasas, his national prominence started when he was legal advisor to Goldwater, which started in 1963-1964, concurrent with his Aries dasa commencement. Since Aries is the natural sixth house indicator in this chart (the house of competition/politics), this house is blessed; also, similar to Mr. Rehnquist’s Cancer dasa, the ruler of Pisces is Bhatri Karaka, which helps ambition. The Sun is the status provider in the chart, in his eleventh house giving a raise in status. His appointment as Assistant Attorney General came during an Aries-Scorpio dasa, a time of great drive and skill in his chart (Venus, Mercury and Jupiter, several skills enhancing and yoga producing planets aspect Aries in this chart. Scorpio is the indicator of partnerships in this chart, and Jupiter being in this sign indicates luck on his part in partnerships.
His appointment to the U.S. Supreme Court occurs in her Aries-Aquarius dasa. Similar to his Cancer dasa, Aquarius disposits to his twelfth house (public service) Jaimini Raj Yoga of Saturn and Moon, and to Rahu in the ninth house. Aquarius contains his competitive planet, aspected by Libra, his eight, tenth and second house dasa. Also, Aquarius is his fourth house indicator of status, giving rise in status in life, perhaps unexpectedly (eighth house Arudha).
The ascension to the Chief Justice of the Supreme Court was nominated June 17, 1986 by President Reagan, during a Sagittarius-Libra dasa—again, his Saturn-Moon conjunction produced a Raj Yoga and he took the position during a Sagittarius-Virgo dasa, with his Sun as leadership indicator in the chart showing a rise in aspiration (11th house).
The 1998 Libra dasa commenced with his inclusion in the second impeachment trial in U.S. History, a peak event for any Chief Justice of the Supreme Court.
Just from this simple exposition of events in the late William Rehnquist’s life we can see the dasas in the chara dasas functioning smoothly and indicating significant events in the former Chief Justice’s life. I will follow up with subsequent articles supplementing this analysis and integrating the upagrahas.
 Publisher: Other softwares are giving different starting points for this Cancer Dasa in the above chart. Our direct communication with K.N.Rao on which software he uses for his chara dasa, he wrote back below
I use Parashara light 2000.
K.N.Rao., F-291 Saraswati Kunj, Patparganj, I.P.Extension, Delhi 110092.Phones 2272-1624/ 2272-1625