Astrology, Karma and Free will
Past life theory and the Karma theory suggests that the Karma of a person of the past lives has resulted in his present birth. We enjoy or suffer due to our past lives and the Karma done in them. The stars and the planets just unveil to us our past deeds and the resultant forces. The LORD above has surely given us a strong and conscious will to enhance or destroy that particular destiny or Sanchit Karma that is the sum total of all the karmas of all our lives together. We can either add on it in a positive manner and increase our merits to move on to a new level or we can also work on it in such a manner that it takes as lower down the rank of ladder, putting our Sanchit Karma in a much more improvised state.
DHARMO RAKSHATHI RAKSHITAHA
This means that one who abides by the Dharma (which do does not mean the religious rites) by doing the right thing at the right time is always protected. What in the short term may appear to be a big loss to us may prove to be a boon on the long run and the vice versa holds true as well.
As per chapter number 26 , Sloka number 50 of Phaldeepika it is said that one who does not want others to be killed, has control on his senses, behaviour and mind and earns his living in a righteous manner, always follows the rules and principles laid down in the scriptures, the planets are always pleased with him and are always favourable to him.
The natal charts show the Karma a person has got from his past lives into the present life. Post birth, the person would be doing more Karma to add on to this chart. If this Karma is good in nature, it does have a modifying power over the bad influence of the natal chart. On the other hand, if the person in this lifetime has developed bad habits and has done bad Karma, no matter how good the natal chart, the planets also have to take into effect the bad Karma thereby the good effects of the chart may be nullified point or diminished.
Much of it can also be explained by the activation theory which states an interesting point that our deeds also activate the relevant houses. Also, the bad deeds would weaken the karakas or the significators and the planets would then be rendered weak to give the good effects that they have bought along with them from the past lives as that is represented by the chart.
Many people turn astrology into fatalistic science and make it assume the form of the reason that most of all miseries are based upon. However, they fail to take into account the present karmas which too have a very serious impact on the fruits of the previous karmas as reflected by the natal chart.
A very interesting comparison here would be the charts of Shri Ram and Ravan.
Ravan who was born in a very illustrious family. He was the son of Rishi Visravas and Kaikasi who was the daughter of the Raksha king. He was the grandson of Rishi Pulastya who was one of the ten Prajapatis or mind-born sons of Brahma and one of the Saptarishi or the Seven Great Sages during the age of Manu.
He was very handsome, intelligent and eligible a person to be a victorious king who had not only conquered the planets but also defeated Lord Indra The King of the Devtas with his power and valour. He was known to have used the planets as steps to climb to his Throne.
His arrogance and Desire got the better of him. Let us see how this came into effect. During the Treta Yug, it was known that a person who would get married to Devi Sita would become the emperor, the all-conquering Emperor. Sita was a beautiful woman endowed with all the qualities that are characteristic of a Padmini or a Stellar woman. Ravan wife Mandodari was no less a lady in that regard.
Ravan also had and exalted Saturn in the 7th house with gave him a very beautiful and a faithful wife. In exalted Mars in the 10th House give him the ability to conquer the world and a moon and Jupiter in the 4th house give him a Throne made of gold and a Kingdom made of gold that is Lanka, the city of gold.
And exalted Sun in the Lagna give him and highly forceful nature. With the aspect of Mars and Saturn on the 1st house that is the Lagna on self. The self lost all semblance of morality, religion and ethics and he fell from his path when Saturn and Mars lost their luster on account of Ravan’s heinous deeds of running after other people’s wives or betrothed and the brilliance of the Sun turned into arrogance. Once he started disrespecting the elders and his wife, his Saturn representing elder and as sitting in the 7th house representing the spouse of the partner became weak. Mars, the karaka of brothers reflecting Vibhishana who got kicked by Ravan, became weak on such an event. Ravana not only usurped Kubera’s kingdom of Lanka, but also his golden Pushpaka Vimana. It is said the vimana (aircraft) could take different shapes and could travel at the speed of mind. His Sun weakened when he disregarded his father’s wishes and forcibly captured Lanka from Kubera who was his brother.
His soul to lost out on account of such bad deeds and ultimately led to his loss or demise. Venus, Lord of 2nd and 7th Houses of maraka placed in 12th House of end of life is the Karaka of females. A female, beautiful and exalted, became the reason for his death.
SHRI RAM’S CHART
Shri Ram was also born in an illustrious family with ancestors as famous as Dilip, Raghu, Aja and Dasharatha. All of them were stellar beings in their own genre.
If we look closely, inspite of all that Sri Ram had to undergo, for no fault of his, he did not let go of his Dharma. On the eve of his coronation, his father asked him to leave the kingdom and go to the forest and lead the life of a homeless mendicant. This strengthened his Sun, the Lord of the 2nd exalted in the 10th House and when he ascended the throne of Ayodhya, his rulership was such that it is remembered till date as a period of exemplary rulership – Ram Rajya.
His Saturn gained strength when he respected the wishes of his step mother with utmost devotion and without malice left for the forests. His throne was fairly secured due to that event. Both mother and throne represent the 4th House where an exalted but retrograde Saturn is placed.
Mars, the 5th Lord of children, power, position, love, crisis management and authority and 10th Lord of profession, name, fame and honour gets exalted in the 7th House of spouse and public life. He had an exemplary spouse and their union is remembered till date. He fought a war with the mightiest of kings for her with nothing but her love, his courage, his brother and the vanar sena (the army of apes) at his side while his enemy had all the conceivable weaponry and parahelia possible. He had the love of his brothers, a major strength for him. As he had abducted the throne in favour of one of his brothers, his Mars became much fortified.
Always the one to help the Gurus, his exalted Jupiter, Lord of the 9th House of Guru, administration, truth and honesty strengthened further when he went into the forests with Rishi Vishwamitra to kill the Rakshashas as denoted by the 6th House. By helping those rishis in the forest, he was blessed with a strengthened Mars and Jupiter.
He had to let go of his wife- one who was known for her beauty, grace, devotion and valour because of his Dharma. He loved his wife dearly but had to be separated from her on account of his Raj Dharma or the duties of the King. His person life took a very second seat when it came to looking after his kingdom and kinsmen. Venus, the Lord of the 2nd House of family and 4th House of emotions gets exalted in the 9th House of truth and principles.
Agreed that Shri Ram was an avatar of Lord Vishnu but once he descended on this planet called Earth, he had to live by the rules and affects of the laws of nature operating on this level. By His avatar, he went on to show us that we need to follow the true Dharma in life to rise up and beyond.
Making Astrology into a science which is too definitive would render us helpless and can act as an excuse for many to blame it all on the forces above. Being resilient and accepting situations as they come would go a long way in strengthening the good planets in our charts and reducing the effects of the badly placed planets.