How to Study Astrology
Prelude: Before you Begin
The most critical & important thing to follow when learning astrology is to "observe". Sanskrit books or Marathi / Hindi books or my articles they can give a lot of text and hell lot of conflicting information. You CANNOT accept what is written in the scriptures and books at face value. For example, some Sanskrit scripture and Soman Shastri book (amazing book by the way) says that "Surya in 5th house does "Santati-Naash:" -- destroys kids!!!? Now, this can put fear of God into people's mind who are 25 30 years old and trying to be parents! :) What they forget is that -- their own parents and their parents also had 5th house Surya! :) :) Rather what I observed with so many cases that Surya in the 5th house shows some of the most brilliant kids!! So, don't run around trying to do a pooja for something which is not a problem. (VD Bhat mentions that Sanskrit books are extreme in opinions about the 5th Surya.)
Similarly, they say that even if a planet is badly placed in D1 but in Navamansh it is Uchcha then it gives Great results!! You would find this NOT working more times!! For example, Shukra is in the last degree of Kirk rashi. It is in Meen navamansh and uchcha navamansh, So it must give great marriage and spouse, right or great life, right? Half-Truth. Any planet in Kirk rashi gives money thats not the point. Shukra in Ashlesha last degree is SO KAARMIC, regardless of L7 and marriage house planets it could show marrying some moron some physical or mental weird person (Karishma Kapoor is one example). Also, Shukra in the last degree of Jyeshtha also similar.
Additional example: GURU in the last degree of Vrishchik rashi -- Some people I know could not have kids -- as it shows some really bad past life karma with kids.
In some granth, wakri/retrograde planets are said to be like uchcha/exalted!! And KP method says that planets in the nakshatra of Wakri planets have ZERO impact! Both are extreme statements and one must observe for themselves and try to understand WHY they are saying that. Maybe some reason they observed but that does not mean it is a line drawn in stone..!
So one MUST take all the stuff found in the books, blogs and internet (including mine) with a HUGE grain of salt! Internet especially is greatest source of unreliable information. There is no substitute for observations, collecting case studies. Once you “see for yourself” one thing working most of the times in say 7 out of 10 cases then start using it and advising people on it. Else, wait and watch and wait and watch instead of fear mongering. The problems is people want QUICK Bucks from astrology and want to keep astrology mystified. The part of the reason is that Indians do not want to pay for good ANALYSIS but would pay thousands for pooja & mantra and gemstones and “remedies”!! So this brings to the next discussion.
How to Study Astrology:
Over the years I have bought hundreds of astrology books many of them were great and some not so. I often get a question on “how to” start study on Astrology and I often end up answering it in a hurry while commenting on the articles. Here is an attempt to summarize my recommendations and some quick comments.
Anybody who starts with Astrology needs to understand that every reading should be followed by CASE STUDIES and observing people around you and on TV etc. You need to identify astrological patterns that you read in real life. Without ANUBHUTI of what you are reading your study will never be complete! Also NEVER EVER take a single sentence in ANY Astrology book (and my articles) separately! (Example: 5th House Ravi does “Santati Nash” is what written in most Sanskrit books – what I see that the folks who have 5th house Sun have the most BRILLIANT kids!) J BEWARE of the books that translate Sanskrit books “as-is”. They are so “Ekangi / Ek-Kalli” --- Lopsided that the student just gets scared and stops reading! J
My Astro study has been mostly Marathi and some in English (mostly Linda Goodman). M.D. Bhat and V.D. Bhat were highly impressed with the Western astrologers and their way of thinking (exact degrees/angles etc). They brought WESTREN scientific approach to Maharashtra / India and integrated it with the Sanskrit granthas and existing Marathi / Hindi literature.
Here are some of the most important and influential books that I have come across. I am writing them mostly in the sequence you should read them. These books will SHAPE you thinking and also make you aware of basics of Astrology.
I think South India has a BHANDAR or WISHAKOSH of Astrology knowledge – I guess someone needs to translate all those books to English/Hindi/Marathi for everybody’s benefit. Hon. B. V. Raman’s Astrological magazine and other such magazines do share this knowledge to a large extent.
1. Palmistry by Keiro (not the 1st but parallel reading with all of them)
2. Kundali Mantra ani Tantra Part 1 (V. D. Bhat)
3. Kundali Mantra ani Tantra Part 2 (V. D. Bhat)
4. Sulabh Jyotish (Soman)
5. SUN SIGNS (Linda Goodman) Good for parallel reading right from the start
6. LOVE SIGNS (Linda Goodman) Good for parallel reading right from the start
7. Navamansh Rahasya (M. D. Bhat)
8. Maharashtracha Kundali-Sangraha (M. D. Bhat)
9. Ase Graha Ashya Rashi (V. D. Bhat)
10. Pancham Sthan (V. D. Bhat)
11. Saptam Sthan (V.D. Bhat)
12. STAR Signs – Again good for parallel reading right from the start
13. Sanchit Darshan (M. D. Bhat)
14. Harshal Neptune Pluto (M. D. Bhat)
15. Samagra Grahayog (V.D. Bhat)
16. Sampurna Prashnashatra (V.D. Bhat)
17. Vrishchik Lagna (V.D Bhat)
18. Encyclopedia of Palmistry (Forgot the author – Will get back)
19. Krishnamurty Paddhati (KP) by Hasabe Guruji
20. The KP Book which is a BIG one by Mr. Walimbe is also gr8
Mantra - Shastra – I have started reading this one and have 2 very good detailed and comprehensive books on them. Will sharte details later as my study progresses.
Hon. B. V. Raman Astrological magazine is a wonder! Just that you will need to generate the charts as the Ayanansh they use are not correct in my opinion! I have not read much about Gems characteristics as such but do have some books on them. I can recommend gems very well based on logical analysis and observations about past life, current situation etc but can’t make much sense when a gemstone is handed over to me! :)
Krishnamurthy Method is essential to study to understand the importance of the Nakshatra and the Winshottari mahadasha division. Most importantly I like it because it is something RADICALLY different and absolutely NEW which Hon. Krishnamurthy launched, practiced and perfected over the years. He came up with something totally new in a BRILLIANT FASHION. He needs to get 1st Nobel if there was one for Astrology!
I will add commentary to each of the books later on. Thought of posting this ASAP.