For the Students of Hindu Vedic Astrology by Dr. A. Shanker

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Planets, Signs and Houses: Vedic Astrology Myths and Facts, Chapter I, Part - 10


Dr. Shanker Adawal

Astrologically it is recognized that the power of the Moon’s influence depends upon its association with various asterisms, The Moon and the asterism Rohini are both concerned with concretizing the creative potential in nature. They have much affinity between them, but such an intensification of the creative impulse is liable to make the individual emotionally unbalanced. The curse of childlessness cast on the Moon by Daksha, Prajapati, refers to the passivity of its creative potential. Being pure consciousness, the Moon must have the association of a masculine or active influence to make it objective. As the personification of the female generative principle, the Moon requires an active agent to make it fertile. For the actualization of the Moon’s creative influence, it must be examined in its relationship with planets and the asterisms where it is placed.


The Rig Veda eulogizes Soma as the source of wisdom. `This characteristic of the Moon is amplified in Puranic mythology as Taraka Rahasya or the Mystery of Tara’s seduction. The Moon became fond of Tara, the wife of Brihaspati or Jupiter who was the priest of the Gods and engaged in the meticulous performance of religious rituals and the rules of ethical conduct. Tara had a craving for the direct perception of the realities of life or the higher wisdom. Jupiter was unable to satisfy her desire. This was represented by their inability to have children. The Moon wanted to seduce Tara; that is, he wanted to impart his inner understanding to her so as to enable both of them to be in unison. He induced Jupiter to proceed with his morning rituals. Meanwhile, he eloped with Tara, seduced her, and made her pregnant. He was not willing to part with Tara and return her to her husband, nor was she desirous of returning.

This led to a war in heaven. The Gods, along with Indra and Brahma were arrayed with Jupiter, and the Asuras, Danavas, Dairyas, and other enemies of the Gods with the Moon. The sage Ushana or Venus, the priest of the Asuras, out of enmity to Jupiter sided with the Moon. A fierce battle ensued and the earth was shaken at its centre” (the axis of the earth began to wobble). Both sides were adamant. No one wanted to yield. Even Tara was not willing to return to Jupiter. Shiva with his trident cut Soma into two, but the contest continued as before. Realizing the imminent possibility of the world coming to an end as a result of this strife, Brahma interposed. He stopped the fight. He compelled Soma to return Tara to her husband. When Tara in due time had a son, she would not reveal who its father was. At last, when she indicated Soma to be the true father, Jupiter did not want the child. But when the child turned out to be a charming creature, he became attracted to it and adopted him as his own. This child was named Buddha, who became the planet Mercury and started the lunar dynasty of kings.

This allusion to Soma or Moon emphasizes that the lunar impact is necessary for producing inner wisdom which cannot be produced by mere outer religious rituals represented by Jupiter. The Moon has the quality of revealing the bidden secrets of nature. The Moon can be subdued by creative power (Brahma), while the mere exercise of force, even at the threat of reducing its power (Shiva’s trident cutting Soma in two) cannot make the Moon swerve from its determination. Not only are the godly potentials (Tara) attracted towards the Moon, but even Ushana, the Daityas and Danavas who represent Asuric forces of nature and foes of the gods are ever willing to support the Moon in order to attain their own ends.

Venus or Shukra

The Asuras whom Venus or Shukra guided were devotees of different aspects of the Divine Trinity represented by Brahma, Vishnu and Shiva. The Asuras obtained powerful siddhis, that is control over supernatural powers as a result of benedictions received from these gods. The primary distinction between the Devas and the Asuras is ahankara, the ego, which the latter represent. But egoism or the idea of the separate self is the root cause of human manifestation. Shukra, as the teacher of egoistic beings like the Daityas and Rakshasas, has the prime task of preserving and nourishing them in an ordered existence. This is only possible by the observance of an ideal code of social behaviour, which Shukra laid down as the Dharma Shastra or code of righteous behaviour. The planetary impulse from Venus aims at maintaining a well-ordered harmonious interaction between different people.


Shanker Adawal

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