Vedic Astrology Blog

Who can be a Jyotishi

Jyotish is a broad pursuit. It is not even as confined as "intellect" , it is even broader than that thing is. In general, careers are a very broad subject since to be fulfilled they require the cooperation of all parts of ourselves.

Who Can Be a Jyotishi?

Jyotish is a broad pursuit. It is not even as confined as "intellect" , it is even broader than that thing is. In general, careers are a very broad subject since to be fulfilled they require the cooperation of all parts of ourselves.

In my own chart, Venus in the 1st as it is said to cause "living with priests", which I have done a lot of, in two different major religions. Then my Moon apparently is in a good pada of Satabish for this, and Aquarius is a good Moon Sign for Jyotish, being as it lends itself towards "fixed revealed old high knowledge" being a "fixed air Sign ruled by Saturn". Then I have a very strong ninth House and Karma DharmadipatiYoga therein. Then I have a lot of the TriKalaGyaYoga, which gives good vision. So everything adds up. If you look at my life for real, separate from astrology, if you knew me well, you would know that I have no choice but to do something to spread Veda. It is all I am, it is my life, and my rule, my lord, my food, my all. It is my autocratic overlord dictator, and I love Him for His control over me. So then, it all goes together, "oh, one such as this, so absorbed as he is in all these subjects, has no choice but to do this somehow or another, well or not, it hardly matters, because they're going to do it just the same".

So if we look at the whole chart, then we can begin to arrive at things.

Examine what is Jyotish: Seeing the truth, that others fear, that others cannot see, that others aren't sure they believe, to see, and surrender, and walk in such knowledge, is not easy on the mind or nerves. One must be a high being to be a Jyotishi. VarahaMihira, the great Jyotishi himself and author, says that the Jyotishi should be handsome, as physical goodness and foibles are reflections of the inner being as well. I am not saying this strongly, but mentioning it in passing as another thing to consider, to broaden our ideas on this subject. It is an interesting point.

There is a high requirement of intellect, and a high requirement of character. To accurately read many persons or things, you must be above them. If you are on many levels a banal and mundane average person, then how can you actually be involved in mysticism? I say it this way not to challenge those on the list, but to add that view when reviewing yourself or others on the subject. There should be some Yoga, some Sadhana, some past associations with goodness, some spirituality, in the person.

Ideally, the Jyotishi should be a Brahmin actually. That doesn't mean "Indian" and does not refer to the caste of birth, because that alone is not enough to guarantee that you indeed are representing that caste in your adult life choices. I have met many Indians who say "they are Brahmins by birth" but are engaged in unbrahminical lives and careers. So that is not what I mean.

I mean, a Brahmin is clean, truthful, full of knowledge, always learning, always trying to apply their knowledge to help others, never offends real Saints, Sadhus, Brahmins, Priests, etc., is equipoised towards all, is the well wisher of all, is especially interested in helping others in a few key areas, which Brahmins have forever been involved with, namely Educating others, Medicine, Spiritual Matters, and Astrology. Brahmins are resource persons, if you have problems and go to them, you should feel some relief of your problems or queries upon leaving. Brahmins are very discriminating and particular, because they know the way things should be done for ultimate happiness and success of the Souls involved. They are Gurus, Teachers, LightPosts, Healers, Lovers, and Compassionate.

So we should see something of these things in the chart. Also, never mind just the chart, look at the person. See what they do, see their lives. Is it going in this direction at all?

But you wanted to know about being a really good Jyotishi, which is of course hard to say. There may be some who are really good who don't have the best Yogas outlined for Jyotish. There are always the exceptions and odd cases, which show the attribute, but are not mentioned per se directly in the books. The tri kala gyaYoga, which I mostly have, for example, is formed of a very prominent Jupiter. Of course, Jupiter is good for higher wisdom and all Brahminical pursuits. Mercury properly placed is of course good too. There should be some religion in the chart, or some connection to mysticism and the hidden meanings of life. For these, the 8th, the nodes, sometimes Scorpio, and so on, can help. A conglomeration or conflagration of factors need to ultimately be present.

If you cannot see anything in the chart, which is STRONGLY pointing towards religion, Brahminical traits, or mysticism, then I think one would have to wonder if the person has the goods internally. For example, there are Signs, which are duller, and those, which are sharper, like Capricorn is not noted for being brainy say, and Leo is not noted for being sensitive. See, so the Signs play a big part. The Lagna, Lagna lord, the Moon, the 9th lord, Jupiter, Mercury, the 10th Lord, all must be congenial that the person take up such a thing as Jyotish.

Someone quoted the aphorism pointed out previously by Sanjay or was it Mr. Rao, anyway, somebody said that Saturn associating in some way with the 11th House is helpful. I have that. It is my 11th lord. But that is always true for Aries Lagna. But I have it in the 9th with the 9th Lord Jupiter who is very strong and the final dispositor for the whole chart. So my "desires" are highly "tamed" by the House of religion, which is strong. Indeed, I have been heavily "corralled" by my religion since I can remember.

That of course is helpful. If a person is a "loose goose" with their life, then that is not so conducive for Sadhana, which is so helpful for becoming eligible to receive the keys to the higher planes of consciousness. When we are overly Venusian, or too much involved in Sense Gratification of a gross type, then it may be harder to think the clear thoughts required, because we are then too much gummed up by the numbing satisfactions offered by food, sex, drugs, sleep, etc. Yogis practice some austerities partly in order to stay sharp. Believe me, if you have never done a Vedic lifestyle, it does make you very sharp, referring to rising early, cold bath, Aarti, japa, Shastra Katha, Sadhu Sanga, Archana, etc.

So the American lifestyle per se, is not so conducive to being a Yogi or Brahmin. The plastic, the cheap foods that are lifeless, the numbing drone of the materialistic television, etc., all of this, is anti-austerity, anti-Brahmin, and kills the spark in the Soul. Of course, you can have all these things and remain sharp, so long as you don't over-partake in any one of them.

We have to be honest with ourselves when considering "Should I become a full time Jyotishi" or even part time. We have to consider if we are able to help others, give guidance, be an example, and be a "Vedic Counselor" so to speak. If we are not ready, then better to admit it and keep trying.

The best way to become a Brahmin is to surrender to a real one, and do what they say to do. This is what it means to become a disciple, or sadhaka, or "Shishya" as a disciple is called in Sanskrit. However, that brings us to the next question:

>Like I said earlier, the problem seems to be that of the Guru, a Jyotish guru.....but days of idealism are long gone, and commerce is the name of the game today.....People don't part with their trade secrets so easily. There are countless number of shops where I live, some even offer Crash Courses! But nowhere a guru is to be found who (in the words of authors of Light on Life) would fire the spark of jyotirvidya inside his/her student's consciousness.

DG: I think that overall, Mr. Rao is a Jyotish Guru, and he lives in Delhi, and there are others, such as VK Choudry and others. Mr. Rao talks too much for me, and too much about himself and his life. Personally I require a quieter environment as I am nearly autistic in my sensitivities to sound and speaking. My Gurudeva (not a Jyotish guru, my Spiritual Guru) was very soft spoken and had few, but meaningful, words. I like that approach.

Jyotish, the science, can be learned from books and so on. The Guru can help. The main teachings of the Guru are about YOU, not the science. The real Guru allows you to spend some time around Him, doing menial services like cleaning or work. Then there is some teaching and discussing. During all of this, the real Guru can see your nature, what is important in YOUR mind and desires, and after awhile, can give you an often painful experience of being cut down to size. The 1st duty of the Guru is to kill your Ego as much as possible. This is not Jyotish. It is spiritual life. Any flaw in your thinking and way of acting, it is HIS duty to point out aggressively, with no uncertain terms. It is not all lovy dovy under a real Guru.

Then, if you stick, you can really then get into things well because you become more usable by the divine, because you are less full of yourself, and thus more empty to receive the teachings. An empty purified cup you are, placed before the Lord by your Guru. It is "femi9" to be a real disciple. One must be subservient, humble, and so on.

That is the main qualification for receiving Vedic knowledge of all varieties. When you can live at the Ashram of your Guru, and only for the benefit of the Guru, and have nothing of your own, and no future plans, nothing. In that state, you are liberated largely, and much can be revealed to you. Of course, if you are dumb, then nothing will sink in. The real Guru does not accept dumb disciples. The real Guru scrutinizes the prospects and weeds out the unqualified. Same with Gurus. The prospects should examine and find a real Guru, not a pretender money maker.

The real Gurus do exist, but are you willing to give up home to go there?

The best time for finding a Guru and going to His or Her Ashram and living for some years is the late teens and early twenties, before marriage, before attachment to family and duties takes over our lives. This I had the fortune of somehow falling into by the Lords grace. This stage of life Vedicly is called "Brahmacharya" and refers to the student years of life. Traditionally, the young are sent to the Gurus Ashram for such trainings at a certain point. This is nicely shown in the Ramayan n videos for example.

It is much like the modern military. If you take late teenagers, they are in the prime of health, not yet attached or duty bound, full of energy, idealistic, easily shaped and contoured by strong authorities into something, either soldiers or Brahmins, it is quite similar. I underwent intense austerities in order to find and stay with my Gurus for some years. It takes great desire. The result is unmistakable. There are not a lot of white people who can say the things I say, and it is only because I've actually paid my dues years ago, that I can do it. I gave my life wholly from age 19 to 25, I had no money, no home, no nothing. I did what I was told, which included traveling to foreign countries and doing difficult things. Once I was told to live in Hong Kong, collect funds, and hold temple functions and thus preach. I did it. I was 19. I was alone. I hated it, but I did it. This kind of thing really makes you into a tool for the Lord. I learned everything, and it was hard, austere, and grueling at times, blissful most of the time though.

Make no mistake, intense and real Hare Krishna devotees do the real thing, it is not like some of the other groups, ours is "free" to join, but you don't go home, you give up your home, just like the scriptures recommend for the Brahmachari stage of life. We did it exactly like it says, shaved heads, dhotis, and the works. AND IT WORKS.

Obviously, not many can do this, especially once they are adults and have families and other engagements.

The next best thing is to honor the real path, and try to be in the resultant consciousness without having to go through it. What does that mean? Well, if you hang out with me, you'll see something like this: You cannot go into any old shop or restaurant, for example, you don't eat meat at all, and you avoid places like McDonalds and any shops, which are Tamasic in nature or content. You don't do anything excessively. You must be clean, regulated, always believe in God, never question the Vedic conclusions, be engaged in meaningful works, avoiding sinful occupations such as animal slaughter, the selling of liquor, and so on. I do not let my relatives who visit bring meat into the House. I teach my children the scriptures to some degree. I struggle to stay as Sattvic as possible. If you perform no struggle, no sacrifice, nothing special, then you are only an armchair devotee. There must be sacrifice in some way. If we serve only our senses fully, then we are not Vedic. We may be running on past good Karma alone, using it up slowly through the enjoying process.

Things like smoking and intoxications are not per se completely ruled out, though they are very very carefully dealt with, just as sex is. These are potent Venusian things, which can enhance a life in subtle ways at times, or destroy it completely. Generally therefore they are restricted to nil during Brahmachari years and not recommended for anyone ever.

However, the amount of Venus we all need varies from person to person, and tolerance and compassion should be exercised for those who need more, and who show the Signs of their indulgences on their faces, waistlines, etc. "There goeth I but by the Grace of God" is a good motto. Never forget you are not the source of your power. It can be stripped away overnight if you are too proud. Everything we have is borrowed plumes. Faultfinding others is to criticize the workings of the Lord, who is guiding everyone individually and correctly FOR THEM. We should not imitate anyone else, but rather find our own true path towards back to the Lords holy feet and holy services. It is individual.

>So I guess it makes sense to go to a good Jyotishi and find out for once and for all whether we should pursue this noble path or exert our energies into more conducive pursuits.

DG: I think that if there is this doubt, that is itself indicative of less than 100% devotion to the subject. I think for those of us for whom it is meant, it takes over our lives. At least these are the sure ones, the ones who are hopelessly given over to the thing, whether it is dance, music, Jyotish, whatever. The one's who are full time 100% come hell or high water, well there's no question, and they will do it either way.

So if you have doubt, then perhaps the above will help sort it out. I hope so. I hope I help. I share openly about myself in order to shed light in various areas, not to brag or show off. I hope I don't appear too egotistical. I know I do at times. Sorry. I am. This is one of the challenges those with strong Jupiter have to fight, the tendency towards "largeness of self image", especially when it aspects the Lagna etc.

I have seen Mr. Rao tell someone who was heavily involved in Jyotish to give it up for art instead. The person did it and agreed with him. So I guess this happens. Yes, the more advanced the Jyotishi is, the more he or she could tell if you are astrologer material. But remember, it will be their opinion alone. Search yourself as well, and ask others. Mostly ask yourself. You must live your life after all.

Jyotish is not, in my opinion, an "easy" career. It involves you with lots of problems and real life traumas and dramas. It is anything but easy. Psychologists, doctors, counselors, are the most akin careers, and these are high paid, high stress careers. Jyotish is not different, except that, if you are properly prepared with your own balance, vision, Sadhana, and liberation from common gross materialism, then you can weather the challenge of helping others in this way. If it is for the money, there are better ways to get way more money, I think. Money cannot possibly be the main reason anyone gets into Jyotish. I have met very few to none really wealthy Jyotishis. Those who charge a good amount are not appreciated for that by many. In other words, a lot of negative talk goes around about the high prices of some well known astrologers. I think money should be downplayed. I think the qualities of Brahminism should be the main thing we look for in a Jyotishi. Fees should be a secondary consideration in both parties, the client and Brahmin.

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