Vedic Astrology Sanskrit English Glossary

February 9, 2009 · Filed under: vedic astrology 

Vedic Astrology originates in Sanskrit. DecisionCare readership is international. Vedic Astrology articles often have the Sanskrit astrological terminology. We try our best to provide the English equivalents in all articles. A few of our readers have experienced difficulty sometimes in following the Sanskrit astrological terminology appearing in our articles. For the benefit of these readers, we list here English meanings of some of the essential terms.

Zodiacal Signs

Rasi—sign, Mesha—Aries, Vrishahha—Taurus, Mithuna— Gemini, Kataka or Karkataka—Cancer, Simha—Leo, Kanya—Virgo, Thula—Libra, Vrischika-Scorpio, Dhanus—Sagittarius, Makara— Capricorn, Kumbha—Aquarius, and Meena—Pisces.


Ravi or Surya—the Sun, Chandra—the Moon, Kuja or Angaraka—Mars, Budha—Mercury, Guru or Brihas­pathi—Jupiter, Sukra—Venus, Sani or Manda—Saturn, Rahu—the Moon’s ascending Node or Dragon’s Head, and Ketu—the Moon’s descending Node or the Dragon’s Tail.

Mandi, Gulika, Indrachapa, Dhuma—Paridhi and Patha—are called secondary planets but are in fact only mathematical points.

Planetary States or Avasthas

Deeptha—exaltation, Swastha–own house, Muditha­- friendly house, Santha—auspicious sub-division, Saktha—retrogression, Peedya—occupying last quarter of a sign, Deena—in an inimical sign, Vikala—in com­bustion, Khala—in debilition, Ahita—in acceleration.

Different Vargas

Dasavargas or ten kinds of divisions of a sign are Rasi (30° or full sign). Hora (15° or 1/2 sign), Drekkana (10° 1/3 sign, Sapthamsa (4 2/7° or 1/7th division), Navamsa (3 1/3 or 1/9 part). Dasamsa (3° or 1/10th), Dwadasamsa (2 1/2° or 1/12th part). Trimsamsa (1° 1/30th part) and Shashtyamsa (1/2° or 1/60th part).

Other Details

Kendra—quadrant; Thrikona—trine, Samasapthaka‑opposition or 180° from each other; Panaparas-2nd, 5th and 8th houses;Apoklimas-3rd, 6th and 9th; Shashtashtaka-6th and 8th from each other; Thritheeya-ekadasa-3rd and 11th from each other; Dwirdwadasa-2nd and 12th from each other; Uchcha‑ exaltion; Neecha-debilitation; swakshetra — own house; Satru—enemy; Mitra—friend; Sama—neutral; Adhi—extreme, e.g., Adhi Mitra—bosom friend; Adhi Satru—Bitter enemy; Upachayas-3rd, 6th, 10th and 11th places; Neechabhanga—cancellation of debility; Uchchabhanga—cancellation of exaltion; Yoga—a certain typical combination; Oja—odd; Yugma—even; Rasi—sign of the zodiac; Nakshatra—constellation or star group; Karma—action, also doctrine of reincarna­tion; Graha Yuddha—planetary fight; Ghati-24 minutes of time; Vighati-24 seconds of time; Rasimana—dura­tion of a zodiacal sign; Subhas—benefic planets; Kruras or Asubhas—cruel or malefic planets; Sama—neutral; Ayana—course, e.g., Sun’s northerly course; Bhava­-house; Bhava-Madhya—midpoint of a house; Bhava­-Sandhi—junction of two houses; Chara Rasis—movable signs; Sthira Rasis—fixed signs; Dwiswabhava or Ubhaya Rasis—common signs; Shadbalas—residential strength, Digbala—directional strength, Kalabala­temporal strength, Chestabala—motional strength, Naisargikabala—natural strength, Drikbala—aspect strength, Ishtabala—positive strength and Kashtabala­-negative strength.

The twelve houses or Bhavas are Lagna or Thanu­ Ascendant or first house, Dwitheeya or Dhana—wealth or 2nd house, Thritheeya or Bhratru—brothers or 3rd, Chaturtha or Matru—mother or 4th, Panchama or Putra—children or 5th, Shashta or Roga—disease or 6th, Sapthama or Kalatra-7th or wife (or husband), Ashtama or Ayus-8th or longevity, Navama or Pitru-9th or father, Dasama or Karma-10th or occupa­tion, Labha or 11th—gain, and Vyaya or Moksha-12th or loss.

Dasa (Planetary Periods)

The 27 stars are grouped as follows and the planet against each group is the Dasa lord.

Aswini, Makha, Moola—Kethu, 7 years; Bharani, Pubba, Poorvashadha—Venus 20; Krittika, Uttara, Uttar ashadha—Sun 6; Rohini, Hasta, Sravana—Moon 10; Mri­gasira, Chitta, Dhanishta—Mars 7; Aridra, Swati, Sata­bhisha—Rahu 18; Punarvasu, Visakha, Poorva­bhadra—Jupiter 16; Pushyami, Anuradha, Uttara­bhadra—Saturn 19; Aslesha, Jyeshta, Revati—Mercury 17; total 120 years.

The ruling constellation determines the ruling Dasa.  Bhukthi — sub-period; Antara — inter-period; Sukshma—sub-inter-period; Prana—sub-inter-inter‑period also life—breath; Gochara—planetary transits. Varsha—year, Masa—month, diva—day, Akasha—sky or ether, Vayu—air, Agni—fire, Apa—water, Prithvi—earth, and karaka—indicator.


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