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The Horoscope of Mahatma Gandhi
|by Dean Dominic DeLucia|
Mohandas Karamchand Ganhi was born on October 2, 1869 in Kathiawar, India. Dr.B.V. Raman has fixed the Moon within the first degree of Leo, but we cannot agree with this placement. The Moon in Leo would receive the full aspect of Jupiter and would be away from the Rahu-Ketu axis in Cancer. This placement would give a wholesome, trusting and rather conventional mindset, while the Moon with Rahu in Cancer would give a very different type of emotional outlook. The Moon in Cancer with Rahu suggests a rather queer and eccentric mind with a revolutionary outlook and an element of suspicion. Actually, the Mahatma was very unconventional and eccentric to say the least, so the Moon in Cancer with Rahu fits him well, not the Moon in Leo.
Gandhi was quite an example of a Libra-rising personality. Libra is the sign of homogeneity, of the masses and of democracy; it is a sign of balance and a sign where any disturbance to that balance is disturbing to the personality; it is a sign of didactic zealousness, too.
There are numerous and obvious examples attesting to the democratic heart and soul of Gandhi and which show him to have been a great champion of the masses- his whole life became dedicated to the masses. He had a religious viewpoint whereby all was one, whereby everything originated from and merged into one white light, so to speak. This understanding carried over to his social and political understandings, too. He had such a homogenous outlook, in fact, that even distinctions between brahmin and outcaste became blurred in his eyes. In his ashram in South Africa, he himself used to empty the stool pots from the rooms, hardly a higher-caste chore. In later years, in his ashram in India, he would only perform marriages between mixed couples, couples of caste and outcaste background. In an interview in November, 1934, he commented that ” I hate privilege and monopoly. Whatever cannot be shared with the masses is taboo to me. That is all.”
But not every Libra rising extends him or herself to the downtrodden the way that Mahatma Gandhi did. His kindness is much due to the placement of Mercury in the ascendant, under the influence of two other first class benefics: Venus in dignity, and Jupiter, the greatest benefic. Mercury is a generous planet. This trait is brought out well in Jataka Parijata, chapter nine, verse ten, wherein it is stated: " If Mercury be in the tenth house, the person born will engage in sacrificial works ..." ( Translation by V. Subramanya Shastri). The idea is that the tenth house ( karma-sthan) is indicative of one's actions and the house through which the soul expresses itself. So if the verse tells us that Mercury here inclines a person towards sacrifice, public service, and such, this means that Mercury by nature is generous and helpful.
This trait is traditionally attributed to the fact that the adi-devata of Mercury is Vishnu, the Supreme Personality of Godhead. The adi-devata is the demigod symbol which typifies the intrinsic qualities of a planet. Vishnu is depicted throughout the Vedic literatures, especially the Puranas, as a forgiving and generous Personality who always comes to the rescue of the Devas, the godly beings, when their forever opponents, the Asuras, get the upper hand.
We can therefore conclude that Mercury is not only a generous planet, but that Mercury inclines one toward piety and goodness, and even makes one sympathetic to Vishnu worship, other indications willing.
Some problems arose when the Mahatma zealously imposed these understandings on his family members- Libras are so inclined to impose their feelings on others. Not only did he himself empty the stool pots in South Africa, for example, he forced his wife, Kasturba, to join him in the task. There were caste concepts involved in this seeming humiliation that a woman from a traditional, Hindu background did not have the resources to comprehend, and something which caused quite a shock to her, emotionally.
Probably due to the same “ all-is-one “ conviction, he was distant in his affections to his children, preferring to see all human beings as equals. He did not offer higher education to them nor the benefits of a wealthy, comfortable life because he did not want to pass on any undue advantages that his high-caste background had given to him ( He had been a very successful and wealthy lawyer earlier on ). His children reciprocated in a rather hurt and bitter fashion by leading their own lives very much apart; his oldest son Harilal even took to alcohol and then adopted Islam, which was something that shocked and hurt his father. It is not hard to understand that this was some kind of retribution, some of his father’s own medicine thrown right back at him. “ If it’s all one, then how do you like this?” His son Devadas was the only one who stayed by his father’s side, as a secretary, and even he noted that the Mahatma was more affectionate to the little children of the ashram than he had been to his own. Once he was asked “But may not an artist or a poet or a great genius leave a legacy of his genius to posterity through his children? “ He replied ” Certainly not! He will have more disciples than he can ever have children.” A zealous dedication to duty came first in the life of this great Libra, and even his children had to have it hoisted upon them.
He detached himself from his wife and zealously imposed his spiritual concepts on her by adopting celibacy!
Perhaps some of Mahatma Gandhi’s fanatic behavior was a matter of the Moon with Rahu as much as being caused by any mere Libran trait of zealousness. The Moon with Rahu indicates that, as is the case with many great achievers, he was a misfit of sorts.
Gandhi’s rising asterism was Swati. Autonomous movement and travel are attributed to Swati. This accounts for the way in which Gandhi marched to the beat of his own drummer so much, and for his sudden changes of theme and activity. All of the sudden he would change his attention from one activity to another, for example, from developing the home-spinning industry to directly organizing non-violent resistance to the British occupation of India. Or the rather sudden tours, such as the salt march in resistance to British taxation.
His father was the prime minister to a petty, regional prince. But this was enough to make the family well-to-do and the owners of three homes. Notice that Mercury owns the house of father, the ninth, and sits with Venus in the ascendant, forming Raj yoga. This explains the nature of his father’s work as a type of counsellor, and the ownership of Mercury over the fourth from the house of father accounts for his properties.
His father passed away, however, in 1885. This is not surprising because the karaka, the Sun, sits in the house of loss. This was enough to bring about the early loss even though the lord of the house of father, Mercury, was involved in such a nice Raj yoga. The period and sub period in operation at the time of the loss was Venus-Mars, according to the Vimshottari scheme. Venus owns the house of loss from the house of father, in other words, the eighth, and Mars is the lord of two bad houses from the house of father. According to the scheme of planetary periods known as Yogini, the same major and sub period were in operation, Venus-Mars.
The Sun owns the house of gains, the eleventh, a big financial house. As might be expected, the family’s finances diminished with the passing of his father.
Gandhi married at 13 years old. Marriage came early in life to him because both the karaka Venus as well as the lord of the house of marriage go to the very ascendant in his chart. It makes sense that his marriage corresponded to the major planetary and sub period of Venus-Venus.
His first male son, Harilal, was born in the summer of 1888. The major and sub periods in operation were Venus-Rahu. Rahu occupies quadrants from the lord of the fifth from the Moon, Mars, and from the karaka Jupiter, so this event corresponds to the planetary periods. In addition, Jupiter had recently entered its favorable fifth-house transit.
In September, right after his son’s birth, he sailed to Britain for higher education in law. Venus owns the house of education from the Moon, and the sub-lord Rahu occupies trines from Jupiter, the planet of formal studies, as well as from the lord of the fourth from the Moon, Venus.
By the time he graduated, the Jupiter sub period was in operation. Jupiter has everything to do with studies, as we have pointed out. Also, Jupiter is deemed to be the planet of lawyers because Jupiter is the brahminical planet, hence the counsellor planet. Lawyers are essentially advise-givers, thus it is a brahminical profession. After his graduation he successfully sat for the bar exam and gained the full-fledged status of a lawyer. Such complete results, graduation and bar acceptance all at once, attest to Jupiter’s strength in a quadrant and to the Raj yoga aspects it receives.
One unfortunate event which occurred while he was in Britain was the passing of his mother. The sub period seems to have corresponded to Rahu- the karaka Moon in the grips of the eclipsing Rahu explains her early demise.
Rahu was responsible for his initial travel to and residence in a foreign country. The rationale for this is simple- Rahu afflicts the fourth house by aspect, which is the house that represents one’s homeland. Rahu has a separative effect, which effectively separated the mahatma from his homeland and brought about foreign travel. The seventh-house occupation by Jupiter was also responsible for his foreign travel because the seventh is connected with foreign residence; it is the opposite of the first house, which stands for “ one’s own.” The sub period of Saturn brought him home again because Saturn owns and aspects the fourth house, the house of one’s homeland. The aspect of Saturn on the fourth to its own sign there, as well as the occupation of the ascendant by its own lord, Venus, strongly suggests that the native of a horoscope will have success in his homeland, which ended up being the truth in the case of Mahatma Gandhi.
In October of 1892 his second son was born. This time the sub period of Saturn was responsible- Saturn owns the house of children. Transit-wise, Saturn was favorable in the third house opposite a favorable Putrakaraka Jupiter passing through its excellent ninth-house transit.
Ramdass was born in 1897, in the minor period of Venus-Mercury. Mercury is a natural benefic and a functional benefic as well because it owns the ninth house, a trine. Mercury benefits the lord of the house of children from the Moon, Mars, by conjunction, and the karaka of children, Jupiter, by aspect.
Devadass was his youngest son, and was born on May 22, 1900. This corresponded to the Martian sub period of the Sun’s major period; Mars is the fifth lord, the lord of the house of children, from the Moon, so this makes perfect insofar as the timing of the planetary periods is concerned. Jupiter was once again passing through his favorable fifth-house transit with a retrograde movement, and the fifth lord Saturn was passing through the sixth house, a great transit for Saturn.
From Venus-Mercury on through the major planetary period of the Sun and that of the Moon, Mahatma Gandhi lived abroad in South Africa. The sub period of Venus-Mercury brought foreign residence because Mercury owns the house of loss and sits in the ascendant with the ascendant lord. The ascendant has to do with the homeland as much or more than the fourth, so this indication of Mercury’s makes sense. Venus-Ketu gave him foreign residence because Ketu occupies the fourth as a malefic, afflicting the house of homeland and giving residence abroad. The Sun sits in the house of loss from the ascendant, the twelfth, which explains why its period was spent abroad. The Moon is a malefic because it is waning, and its aspect on the fourth also gave residence abroad.
How interesting that the sub period of Saturn in the Sun’s major brought him back home for an extended stay in India. Again, Saturn owns and aspects the fourth, the house of homeland.
It was during the major period of the Sun in the twelfth that he organized the Indian Ambulance Corp for the British during the Boer War. This was voluntary service and corresponded well to the idea of a planet in the twelfth house, the house of losses- sometimes planets in that house involve one in charity and such, depending on the actual influences. The fact that he was involved with the government, with hospitals and with doctors, all have to do with the Sun.
His first organized campaign of civil disobedience came about in September of 1906, the first Satyagraha campaign. It was in reaction to laws which were directed against Indian immigration to the Transvaal region in South Africa. This was during the minor period of Moon-Mars. Mars is a fiery planet and one which indicates resistance, especially the kind of resistance which Gandhi offered at this time and which was to become characteristic of his civil rights and independence struggles- a balanced, equipoised resistance. The influence of Mars manifested in this way because of its situation in Libra.
In June of 1907 he organized another Satyagraha resistance against The Black Act, the compulsory registration of Asiatics in South Africa. This was during Moon-Rahu. Rahu is a revolutionary planet, so the connection's obvious. He also stood trial during Moon-Rahu for instigating the Satyagraha and was sentenced to two months in jail. Rahu is a restrictive, eclipsing planet, and has some very central influence in the chart, which accounts for the time in jail.
In August of 1908, after Smuts had broken his agreement, Gandhi organized the burning of registration cards. This was in the major and sub period of Moon-Jupiter. Notice that Jupiter receives the aspect of the fiery Mars, hence the burning of the cards.
Moon-Jupiter also saw him sentenced to three months in jail for his part in the burning. Jupiter is the lord of the house of imprisonment. This is enough for Jupiter to give some time in jail, inspite of being a natural benefic. This was in February of 1909. Saturn was passing through an evil transit at the time, and the Sun was just beginning to pass through its evil eighth and ninth house transits, the worst two of the cycle.
He organized the third Satyagraha campaign during the sub period of Moon-Venus. It came to a successful conclusion with the passage of the Indian Relief Act. By his negotiations with Smuts and the passage of the act, which was called a “ Magna Carta “ for Hindu rights, Gandhi’s status as a liberator amongst the Hindus became very much consolidated.
The beginning of the major Mars period found Gandhi back in India. This is what we may expect from a Raj yoga planet in the ascendant, the ascendant representing one’s birth place.
During the Mars period Gandhi participated in civil resistance all of the way through. He established an ashram near Ahmedabad shortly after arriving in India, later moving to the Sabarmati River. In 1918 he led a strike by mill workers near Ahmedabad, he led another Satyagraha campaign for peasants in Kheda, strikes against the Rowlan bills and became the editor of an English weekly, The Young Indian- all in 1918. In 1920, at the tail end of the major Mars period, he was elected the president of the All India Home Rule League. By its end, the Mars period had made him one of the principal leaders of home rule.
He was arrested in the Mars-Moon sub period and charged with sedition. The Moon is waning and evil, and subjected to conjunction with Rahu. He was found guilty and sentenced to six years in jail. His sentence was suspended after two years, in the Rahu-Rahu sub period. The lion’s share of the Rahu-Rahu sub period was spent in jail, and this was in keeping with Rahu’s eclipsing nature.
He spent the sub periods of Rahu-Jupiter and Rahu-Saturn involving the masses in the home-spun industry and trying to uplift the untouchables.
At the end of the minor period of Rahu-Saturn, though, he set out on his Salt March. It riveted the country’s attention and promoted non violence as a method of resistance. The campaign was a huge success for him. Even so, he spent nine months of the sub period in jail because of breaking the salt laws. Saturn sits in the eighth sign, a very inimical sign for him, so we have to expect a taste of the worst which Saturn has to offer, and one of Saturn’s principal karaka indications is bondage. The lord of the major period, Rahu, will always support any sub period’s tendency to indicate bondage because of his disposition and central location, which we have already gone over.
He was released on January 25, 1931. This corresponded to the minor period of Mercury. As a benefic in the ascendant, Mercury tended to give relief. On the other hand, Mercury is the evil lord of the twelfth house, so there was some tendency for bondage due to lordship. The transits tipped the balance to a large degree. By January of 1932, however, Saturn had entered an evil transit and brought about imprisonment again, still in the sub period of Mercury.
A bit later in Rahu-Mercury, in September of 1932, Gandhi began a prison fast until death in order to achieve political aims in relation to the untouchables. The fast made a huge impact, all from prison. The British caved in and Gandhi broke the fast on his own terms. It had been a huge victory for him. Jupiter had been passing through its favorable second-house transit, but the Sun passing through the third seemed to really power the short-but-decisive victory over the colonial government.
His release this time came in the sub period of Ketu. Jupiter had been transiting the favorable second, three planets, including the Sun, combined in a powerful, eleventh-house transit to trigger his release.
Towards the end of Rahu-Ketu and in the beginning of Rahu-Venus the Mahatma undertook a campaign to end untouchability. He made a ten-month march in benefit of the Harijans. Venus is the Daitya Guru, the preceptor of the fallen. He is considered merciful because he engages in the elevation of the fallen. It is but natural that, in the Venusian sub period, Gandhi exhibited the kindness of Shukra towards the fallen masses.
In the Venusian sub period, three attempts were made on his life. Venus is the lord of the house of death placed in the ascendant, so the evil side of its lordship has to manifest, too.
Until the end of the Rahu major period Gandhi dedicated much of his direct energy and attention to social upliftment.
In August of 1942 he was arrested -along with his wife- for organizing a campaign in support of the Congress party’s ” Quit India “ resolution. This was in the Jupiter-Jupiter period. Since Jupiter owns the house of imprisonment, it is not surprising that he would experience arrest during the major and sub period of Jupiter. His imprisonment continued during the sub period of Saturn ( we have already covered the logic behind confinement and Saturn’s disposition in this chart.)
Still under the influence of the planetary period of Jupiter-Saturn, his wife Kasturba passed away. The major-lord Jupiter is the lord of two evil houses and occupies the house of marriage. Saturn is a malefic, the planet which defines one’s longevity, and sits in the eighth ( death ) from the house of marriage and spouse.
On May 6, 1944, he was released from jail unconditionally. The Sun and Mercury had just entered the favorable tenth-house transit and sat in a square relationship with the benefic Jupiter.
In the sub period of Jupiter-Mercury, in March of 1947, he toured Bihar province to diminish Hindu-Muslim tensions. He also began conferences in New Delhi with Lord Mountbatten. Mercury is the planet of communication, and its position in the ascendant in Raj yoga gave him an outstanding role as a great communicator, a yeoman, so to speak.
But by the time the minor period of Ketu began, events started taking their own turns and Mahatma Gandhi became ever more powerless to stop them. He opposed the Congress Party decision to divide the country into India and Pakistan, but he lost out. Riots and violence broke out as India was partitioned and, in spite of his fasting and other efforts, he very much lost control over events. Jupiter was the major lord of the planetary period, but the lord of evil houses, and would certainly not allow him to achieve nor consolidate his goals. Ketu as the lord of the sub period was not overwhelmingly helpful, either, because Ketu was receiving the aspect of a waning and weak Moon. As rioting and displacement became wide-spread, Gandhi fasted and prayed but he was unable to stem the tide.
On January 30, 1948, Mahatma Gandhi was assassinated by Nathuram Godse while holding a prayer meeting. It may be surprising that a violent death could occur during the planetary period and sub period of two benefics. However, a violent ending is so strongly indicated in the chart that the mere operation of planetary periods is not going to change the nature of the results indicated by house position, sign position, lordship, et cetera.
That Gandhi was participating in prayer at the time of death was indicated by the influence of three benefics such as Jupiter, Venus and Mercury over the lord of the house of death- Venus itself. In fact, he uttered the holy name of Shree Rama as he was shot. In the eighth chapter of Bhagavad Gita, Shree Krishna explains that one who remembers him at the time of death attains to the Supreme abode, the Vaikuntha lokas, the eternal worlds of no anxiety.
There are various other indications which confirm that his next destination was a pious one. For one, the Sun occupies the twelfth house as a satvic planet. The twelfth is the last house of the horoscope and is close enough to the next destination to represents it. It has to do with the karma that one has accrued going into the next destination. The lord of the twelfth is Mercury, a pious planet itself, which sits with Venus, another pious planet, and which receives the aspect of Jupiter, the planet of dharma and religious understanding. We can only dream about the exalted nature of the Mahatma’s next destination.
Violent Mars sits next to the lord of the house of death and the ascendant lord, Venus, and aspects the house of death as well. This is how a violent death is indicated. That he was shot in the head is indicated by the fact that Mars has so much influence over the ascendant, which represents the head itself.
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