As Vedic astrologers, we routinely scan a chart to note the presence of yogas, ie, the planetary combinations that portend one effect or another for the person under consideration. These anticipated results derive, typically, from the houses the participant planets own, the signs and houses they occupy and, sometimes, the basic nature of the planets themselves.
Even as we take note of those yogas present in a chart, and form an opinion regarding the qualitative outcomes for the owner, we typically don’t have a way to assess the overall strength of the chart, except to note that it has several or few yogas.
In other words, we’re unable to value the presence or absence of yogas in any quantitative way. Therefore, the average practitioner has few tools by which to make a distinction between Chart A with a multitude of common yogas, versus Chart B with a mere handful of rare yogas.
And at this point, most astrologers must pause and ask themselves, Do I know which yogas are relatively common, versus those which are relatively rare? If the answer is “no” then we must admit that we’re limited in our ability to make subtle distinctions between charts.
Happily, help is at hand. Over a series of six articles, I’ve analysed the definitions, or “rules of formation,” for over a dozen well-known astrological combinations, and calculated their chances of occurring in the average chart. With such information, any astrologer can now appreciate whether a chart is merely average in its roster of yogas, or truly extraordinary.
For the record, here are the six articles in question:
- The Mathematics of Yogas, part 1: Pancha Maha Purusha, Chandra Mangala, Maha Bhagya
- The Mathematics of Yogas, part 2: Parivartana Yoga
- The Mathematics of Yogas, part 3: Budhaditya, Kesari, Kujadosha
- The Mathematics of Yogas, part 4: Dharma-Karma/Raja Yoga
- The Mathematics of Yogas, part 5: Dhana Yoga
- The Mathematics of Yogas, part 6: Viparita Raja Yoga
Although freely available via these links on my website, you can also find the same articles in my book, Stellar Astrology: Volume 2, which includes many other articles of interest and value to serious students and seasoned practitioners of jyotish.
Definitions for some of these yogas may vary somewhat depending on what books you’ve read, or how your teacher(s) have clarified the fine points. But I’ve discussed the rules of formation for each of these and, under defined conditions, calculated the likelihood of their appearing in the average chart.
For instance, Mahabhagya Yoga occurs in only one out of 36 charts, while most of the Pancha Maha Purusha Yogas occur roughly one in 12. At the other end of the probability spectrum, Budhaditya and Kesari Yogas are much more common, appearing in roughly one out of five charts.
Finally, it might come as a surprise for many readers to realize that Parivartana Yoga is one of the most common combinations, appearing in two out of every five charts. Despite its frequent appearance, however, the devil is in the details. Parivartana appears under 66 different combinations of house lord exchange, or mutual reception by sign as it is called in western astrology.
For this reason, readers would be well-advised to gain a better understanding of it, since it inevitably occurs so frequently in the charts of clients. Indeed, that was my rationale for writing one of my books, Parivartana Yoga, in order to provide detailed interpretations for each of the 66 combinations, along with sample chart delineations of well-known people.
So, regardless of whether you’ve just begun to study jyotish, or you’re already a seasoned practitioner, you’d do well to pore over the column chart shown above, and to read the articles via the links provided. The next time you examine an astrology chart, you’ll have a much greater appreciation for the yogas it has. Keep in mind, however, that quantity is one thing, quality quite another. The latter will be the subject of another article.
Alan Annand is a graduate of the American College of Vedic Astrology and a former tutor for the British Faculty of Astrological Studies. His New Age Noir crime novels (Scorpio Rising, Felonious Monk, Soma County) feature astrologer and palmist Axel Crowe, whom one reviewer has dubbed “Sherlock Holmes with a horoscope.”
He’s also the author of several non-fiction books. Stellar Astrology, Volumes 1 & 2, offer a wealth of time-tested techniques in the form of biographical profiles, analyses of world events, and technical essays. Parivartana Yoga is a reference text for one of the most common yet powerful planetary combinations in jyotish. Mutual Reception is an expanded companion volume for western practitioners, covering the same subject of planetary exchange through the lens of traditional astrology.
Websites: www.navamsa.com, www.sextile.com