The Upagrahas have a vicious reputation. By many astrologers, they are considered to be dark and destructive forces within the chart. However, as we have seen in The Effects of the Shadow Planets in Vedic Astrology, The Upagrahas Part 2 of 3, certain placements and situations will allow them to act constructively within the horoscope.
In this entry, we will be exploring the influence of the Kala Velas, or the shadowy son’s of the planets, particularly the son’s of Saturn and Jupiter. These are the third grouping of the shadow planets. They too have an influence on the chart, as a resonance or echo of their planetary fathers. Just like the planets of the Dhooma group show sensitive points within our chakras, since those planets are derived specifically from the Sun’s degree in the horoscope, the Kala Vela group show sensitive points as related to the powers indicated by their embodied father’s***. The position of the Upagrahas of the Kala Vela group are derived from the time of day related to their fathers. Their placement in the chart reveals hidden points of power or weakness that may otherwise go unnoticed.
What are the Kala Velas?
The Kala Velas are said to be the Shadowy Sons of the embodied planets. A straightforward account of the Upagrahas can be found in The Art and Science of Vedic Astrology Vol. II, with material referenced from Brihat Parashara Hora Shastra and Phaldeepika. In these older texts you will also find antiquated listings of the effects of many of these Upagrahas. See the table below for the known names and correlations of the Kala Velas.
|(***These are not the same as the planets of the Dhooma Group, and are not referenced in BPHS.)|
Again, their calculations can be found in Brihat Parashara Hora Shastra and The Art and Science of Vedic Astrology Volume II, if you are interested. However, our focus will be on interpreting these points, as any good Vedic Astrological Software will calculate these for you.
Of the Kala Velas, Gulika, the Son of Saturn, is said to be the cruelest while Yamaghantaka, the Son of Jupiter is said to be very beneficial. In Phaladeepika it is said, “While Gulika is very powerful in causing evil, Yamaghantaka is powerful in causing good. All other Upagrahas, possess only half the power of Gulika in the ability to cause evil.” Each of these Kala Velas, overall, takes on the general energy of their embodied father’s.
Guidelines to Remember When Analyzing the Kala Velas
The Son’s of Saturn, Mars and the Sun
- Gulika, Mrityu and Kala may become powerless when either the lord of the day of birth or the lord of the ascendant is strongly placed in the horoscope.
- Conjunctions with Gulika, Mrityu and Kala will tend to harm that planet in the same way their father’s would, although the harm may be sudden or unpredictable in nature, due to the Kala Vela’s shadowy nature.
- Gulika, Mrityu and Kala will also tend to harm the affairs of the houses which the planets they are conjunct rule. They may also disrupt the affairs of the house they tenant, particularly if within the same degrees as the dasamsa and trimsamsa of the house cusp.
- Gulika, Mrityu and Kala become more difficult when sharing a house with another cruel planet, or if they are powerfully (PLANTERILY) aspected by a cruel planet.
- As with all cruel planets, Gulika, Mrityu and Kala tend to function better in the 3rd, 6th, 10th and 11th houses.
These same principles will be true for Paridhi (the son of Chandra) when the Moon is waning in the horoscope and Ardhaprahara (the son of Budha) when Mercury is considered a cruel planet by general principles of astrology.
The Son’s of Jupiter, the Moon, Venus and Mercury
- Paridhi, Yamaghantaka, Ardhaprahara and IndraChapa increase their power to do good when the lord of the day of birth and the ascendant is strong in the horoscope.
- Conjunctions with Paridhi, Yamaghantaka, Ardhaprahara and IndraChapa tend to uplift those planets in the same way their embodied father’s would. Although the assistance may come suddenly and unexpectedly and unpredictably.
- Paridhi, Yamaghantaka, Ardhaprahara and IndraChapa will also tend to help the affairs of the houses which the planets they are conjunct rule. They may also help the affairs of the house they tenant, particularly if within the same degrees as the dasamsa and trimsamsa of the house cusp.
- Paridhi, Yamaghantaka, Ardhaprahara and IndraChapa become more beneficial when sharing a house with another benefic, or if they are powerfully (PLANTERILY) aspected by a benefic planet.
- Paridhi, Yamaghantaka, Ardhaprahara and IndraChapa tend to give greater beneficial effects in the 1st, 4th, 5th and 9th houses.
The Effects of Gulika in Houses (As per Brihat Parashara Hora Shastra)
1st House: Afflicted by disease, lustful, sinful, crafty, wicked and miserable.
2nd House: Ugly, miserable, mean, given to vices, shameless and poor.
3rd House: Charming, a head of a village, fond of virtuous men, honored by royalty. Although one’s siblings may suffer.
4th House: Sickly, devoid of happiness, sinful and afflicted by windy and bilious excess.
5th House: Praiseworthy, poor, short-lived, spiteful, mean, a eunuch, subdued by wife and a heterodox.
6th House: Devoid of Enemies, strong and healthy, splendorous, liked by his wife, enthusiastic, friendly and helpful.
7th House: Subduer of women, sinful, adulterer, emaciated, devoid of friendship and will live off of others.
8th House: Troubled by hunger, cruel, miserable, short tempered, unkind and poor.
9th House: Experience many ordeals, emaciated, perform evil acts, be very unkind, sluggish, a liar.
10th House: Endowed with sons, happy, enjoyer of life, fond of worshipping gods, and will practice meditation and religion.
11th House: Enjoys women of class, a leader, helpful to relatives, short in stature, yet an emperor.
12th House: Sinful, base, unfortunate, indolent, joining to mean people.
The Effects of Yamaghantaka in Houses
1st House: Religious, full of learning, honest, peaceful, wealthy, charitable and with progeny.
2nd House: Wealthy, pleasant disposition, happy, spiritually inclined, dear to one’s traditions.
3rd House: Travels often, respectful to one’s peers, pious, charming, fond of one’s spouses.
4th House: Quiet, peaceful heart, helpful to all in need, beautiful lands.
5th House: Full of wonder, intelligent, affectionate, dear to his religion, full of virtue, abundant resources, lord of mantras.
6th House: Diseases of excess, too trusting, difficulties with wealth, giver of loans.
7th House: Unhappy, wasteful with resources, losses to spouse, problems with progeny and legacy.
8th House: Deep intuition, astrologer, peaceful, strong bodied and long lived, gentle, inheritance.
9th House: Having progeny, happy, valuable to one’s society, law giver, honorable, having much wealth, generous to those in need.
10th House: Versed in religion and law, learned in all shastras, intelligent, artistic and happy.
11th House: Enjoys relationships with others, dear to one’s people, phlegmatic diseases, well known and respected.
12th House: Many expenses, miserable, dishonorable to relatives, belongs in a Math.
General Effects of Paridhi, Ardhaprahara, IndraChapa
These Kala Velas, when well situated, benefit the houses in a similar fashion as Yamaghantaka. However, their influence will tend to emulate the qualities of their embodied father’s.
General Effects of Kala, Mrityu
These Kala Velas, when well situated, tend to give strength, courage, initiative, power, fortitude and consistency within the area of life represented by the houses in which they are placed. However, this usually only occurs in the 3rd, 6th, 10th and 11th houses. Other wise Kala (a son of the Sun) often causes too many sacrifices that are too high a price in the houses he is situated. Mrityu (a son of Mars) causes frustration, animosity, impatience and injury within the houses he is situated. Since these are shadow planets, their qualities are the hidden shadow side of their fathers.
Mandi is also a son of Saturn. Some astrological texts consider Gulika and Mandi to be one in the same, others see Gulika and Mandi as two separate astrological forces. As Richard Fish writes in The Art and Science of Vedic Astrology Volume II, “Even when Gulika and Mandi are calculated separately they often fall very close to each other, so deciding which point of view is correct is not easy.”
Mandi is spoken of as an important point of consideration, particularly in Sarvatha Chintamani. For example when dealing with the effects of the 10th house, it is said, “If the lord of the 10th is with Saturn and the 8th house lord, and the 10th lord is in a cruel navamsha or in a kendra, one also gives cruel orders. This is true as well if Rahu and Mandi occupy the 10th house, or Rahu or Ketu is in the 8th and the 9th lord is occupying a sign of debilitation.”
Review of the Effects of Each Upagraha
As with Rahu, Ketu and the Dhooma Group, before coming to a conclusion, each chart should be assessed individually. The more beneficial and stronger the ascendant, ascendant lord and atmakaraka, the less damage the negative Kala Velas will cause. Also, the strength and beneficence of the dispositor of the Kala Vela in question, should be considered. The placements and types of planetary aspects the Kala Vela has must be considered. And finally, it is of utmost important to note if the Kala Vela shares the same degrees (by conjunction) of a dasamsa or trimsamsa of a cusp or other planet.
In regards to timing, these planets will become active during the planetary cycle of their lord. They will also become active during the cycle of any planets closely conjunct. See the example at the end of the second section of this series, The Effects of the Shadowy Planets of Vedic Astrology, for more details. Also, when particularly negative transits occur within the same natal degree of the crueler Kala Velas, difficulty should be considered as a possibility. When particularly positive transits occur with the same natal degree of the more helpful Kala Velas, greater gains should be predicted.
The Upagrahas are seldom utilized by most modern-day astrologers. As is their general nature, they are mysterious. They can give surprising insights, particularly if all other astrological techniques are falling short of describing a nativities experience. In this way, it can be helpful to take note of these powerful forces, particularly when they are very close to another planet or cusp and have significant confluence towards positivity or negativity. If they are not overtly indicating negativity or positivity, and they are not within the same degrees as a planet or cusp, they are less likely to give exceedingly clear information. In this case, they may just end up confusing the process. So treat these points with respect, but don’t let their shadowy, smoky, mysterious nature confuse your ability to see what is obvious based on more clearly defined astrological principles. And remember to consider them both in your work with birth charts and prasna.