Saturday, May 2, 2015

A Rejoinder to Sanjay Rath's artcle on Netraha Yoga

Recently, there was a blog published by Sri Sanjay Rath on his site on Complexity of Jaimini Sutras and it was referring to my blog Jaimini on Blindness. Hence, I posted a detailed reply to the site, which is given here below.

Update: Some paragraphs from this write-up below were chopped off in reply to Sanjay Rath, as I felt them irrelevant to his article. Shall I delete them from this blog also? Hmmm. Let me think.

The URL of Sanjay Rath's article

Tiny URL Link to Sanjay's Blog
Link to Sanjay's Blog

Dear Sri Sanjay Ji,

Sri Gurubhyo Namah

Thank you very much for writing a blog referring to my article published on my blog more than 5 years ago. Now a day, I am not very active on weblogs except occasional visits to favorite websites. Anyway, as you were referring to my article and explaining your interpretation of Jaimini Sutras, I felt it was my responsibility to respond. Here goes my response to some of the points raised. Hope it would be taken by all in positive and educative spirit.

There was a general statement by you in the article, though it was not directly addressed to me, I felt it would be proper to respond to the statement.

You wrote

“Another problem that is consistently seen is the young mind taking anything written by a commentator as the final and only truth in the sutra.

You also wrote:

Nothing is final, nobody understands everything. Every scholar of the past, present and the future is yet another seeker of the upadesha sutra, struggling to see the big picture.”

Let us call the above statement of yours as Stmt1 for easy reference.

That is exactly the point I have been trying to expose through my blogs on my bog site . One would definitely appreciate the fact that my efforts were only to bring out the other side of the story of Jaimini Sutras and I did never mean the interpretations written by me or taken from ancient commentaries were final.

I met a very responsible member of SJC in Delhi and mentioned about Sri Iranganti Rangacharya. Then, I was advised by that person to read Books by Sri Sanjay Rath only to understand Jaimini Sutras. Though, I am very sure that advice was friendly and from a person who cared for me, but I felt it was not proper to ignore the great doyen of Jaimini astrology. At that time, my thoughts were similar to Stmt1 cited above.

You Wrote:

There are two errors in this argument

Error #1: Removing the matra from the word शुक्र (śukra), we have the consonants श (śa) and क (ka)

The Katapayadi Varga for this is श (śa) = 5 and क (ka) = 1; reverse this we get 15; Now expunge multiples of 12 and the remainder is 3

Therefore the numerical value of शुक्र (śukra) = 3 or third house. The first error is an incorrect calculation which shows Shukra as meaning Lagna whereas the calculation actually shows third house.

I beg to pardon me. Unfortunately or fortunately, there is no error in my interpretation in decoding sukra as Lagna. You advise to remove a non-existent matra from word शुक्र (śukra). Kra is a conjunct of to consonants Ka and Ra. Removing Ra in conjunct kra amounts removing consonant not the matra. According to katapaya numeric system, in a conjunct consonant, the last of the consonants alone will count. Thus decoding sukra shall be as follows.

Su = Sa = 5

Kra = Ra = 2

Thus word sukra yields numeric value of 25 which means 1 after necessary decoding.

Your deciphering sukra as 3rd is definitely wrong. You may check the same in case of word bhagya in argala sutra, which yields number 2. Please refer to your own book JMUS page 93, where you interpreted sukra as number one (1). I sincerely hope you stumbled in hurry.

This echoes the Stmt1.

However, in my article, I interpreted sukraat as either from Venus or Lagna and I have given ample explanation on why sukraat in the sutra suitably mean from planet Venus.

You Wrote:

“Error #2: Maharsi Jaimini has explicitly stated previously that the Katapayadi Varga shall only be applicable for Bhava and not for Graha. This means if the Graha names are mentioned at all, in any place, they have to be interpreted only as the planet.”

Definitely Jaimini wanted us to use katapayadi to understand Bhavas and Rasis but not Planets. There are other interpretations as well, which I am not going to mention here..

Scholars ignorant of vast knowledge of Jaimini hidden in manuscript libraries, tend to hold on magnum opus like BPHS to reason out everything of JMUS from that only. One would understand why Paryaya Dasas do start from stronger of Lagna and seventh once they understand the words like sukra and sasi. Else, they would fall to prey like Sri XXXXXX, who writes Sukra and Sasi as Venus and Moon.

You Wrote:

Interpretation #1: śukra+āt gauṇa pada+astho rāhuḥ sūrya dṛṣṭo netra+hā

āt is an emphasis like ‘further'; the argument that shukra has to indicate Lagna as reference point holds no water as there are umpteen sutra without direct reference to lagna and only referring to the bhava in question

Translation: “Further, Shukra associating the Gauna-Pada with Rahu and Surya aspects causes damage to the eye [sight]”

Again I beg to differ. Your interpretation is wrong. I am not an expert in Sanskrit language, but my humble learning of Sanskrit reminds me that Sukraat is Panchami Vibhakti, which means From Sukra. Thus, your interpretation of Sukra association with xyz is wrong. Interpreting Jaimini Sutras without knowledge of Sanskrit language and its grammar leads to such errors. This is where our guru Sri Iranganti Rangacharya, an expert in both Jyotisha and Sanskrit did excellent service to this fraternity by commenting Jaimini Sutras. Sri Rangacharya after 3 decades of his study of Jaimini wrote his first book on Jaimini with impeccable meaning according to Sanskrit grammar.

As you call it Jaimini Sutras are complex, I tend to call them as cryptic as stated on my blog banner. Only the words differ but meaning the same. Mathematical problems seem very complex to novice. Once the correct formula to solve the sum is applied, the problem would be solved easily, so are Jaimini Sutras. Understanding Jaimini sutras requires hard work as you endorse it but understanding of Sanskrit language is also an important toolset.

Many Vriddha Karikas use words Sukra and Sasi to denote bhavas. As I already mentioned earlier, “Sarvatra Savarna Bhava Rasayascha” sutra has much more to it than on its face.

Bringing in Graha Drishti in understanding Jaimini Sutras, is the starting point where I departed from the well followed internet based learning. Rasi Drishti and Graha Drishti are different drishtis of planets only. Use Rasi based Drishti of planets in Jaimini and longitude based drishti of planets in Parasara system. It is as simple as that. As you know, longitudes do not hold much water in Jaimini barring calculation of certain special lagnas. One does appreciate this fact if they agree upon Parasara and Jaimini are two different system of Vedic Astrology, else it would of course, seems rubbish. Ekam Sat Viprah Bahutha Vadanti.

You wrote about Aacchadana Drishti. I learnt planets Jupiter, Saturn, Ketu and Full Moon do have Aachadana not all planets. The houses you mentioned for different planets are strange to me. Alas, I missed that part. Thank you for enlightening me.

You Wrote:


The dictum that affliction to the fifth house from Venus leads to Netra Roga from BPHS is based on a totally different yoga called Acchadana Drsti of Graha. There is just no need to extend this to the ninth house nor to trines from Lagna.

I clearly mentioned in my article that the verse from BPHS Telugu version exactly endorse my view. It is not based on Aachadana Drishti. I don’t remember Aachadana Drishti mentioned in the BPHS version I cited. The BPHS verse exactly mentioned trikone, which is plural meaning both 5th and 9th house.

I am not going to the examples and the case studies given by you. My view point on them had been already given on my blog. I guess you took the same charts I give in my article. Didn’t you? I concluded my article saying Sukra i.e, Venus is more appropriate than Lagna, which is in line with your view.

At last let me reiterate my stand on my approach for whatever worth it be. I do respect BPHS as much as I respect JMUS. I never try to mix these two systems and also admit them as two branches of the same tree, the Vedic Astrology. There are very important reasons to come to the above conclusion. The reasons are well documented below.

1. My Guru advised me not to mix Parasara and Jaimini.

2. Sri Vemuri Ramamurthi Sastri is believed to never using Parasara System. Sri VRS is the only astrologer in recent past, who used exclusively Jaimini in interpretation.

3. I never saw any ancient commentator doing the mixing job.

4. Whenever the ancient scholars find it necessary to bring in the Parasara Principles they specifically mentioned the reason why they did so.

5. There are certain hints given by scholars of yore when to use a particular sutra. That itself is enough food for me for this lifetime to understand Jaimini. That way I am fortunate enough not to get misguided.

6. I never meant ancient commentaries are final neither the paramparas. Yet, manuscripts of ancient commentaries are better documentary evidences of how to interpret Jaimini than the undocumented paramparas.

Sarve Janah Sukhinoh Bhavantu

Seeking Blessing,



Dear Shanmukha garu,
I am astonished to see the oversight of such a scholar. Katapayadi sutras form the basic for sanskrit numerics. Even in music also for the 72 melakartas we use this system to name the raga according to their number. For example 'Suryakantham' is the 17th mela. Su is the 7 and among the Ra and Ya of the samyukta rya we take Ya which denotes 1. The strict discipline with which sanskrit was used by our predecessors has disappeared now. People who do not even know how to read devanagari or understand basic sanskrit language became great scholars in astrology conducting webinars with reference to classic texts which they themselves have never read firsthand. Very sorry state of affairs.


Shanmukha said...

Dear Rajesh Garu,

Yes, it might be an oversight only.

I was really astonished when I learnt that the names are ragas were coded in Katapayadi. It is very easy to learn the raga notes once we understand this numeric system and just two of tables.

Very true what you have said.


Aarti said...

Hello Sir,

Can you please clarify how to compute Upapada then? From the internet - Sanjay Rath says Upapada is of the 12th house. There is another website (Chiraan) which lists three different interpretations and yet again Narasimha Rao also mentions taking longitudes while computing the Arudhas. A post on this would be very helpful for those of us trying to understand Jaimini without a Guru.

Thank you.

Shanmukha said...

Namaste Aarti,

I checked the link given by you and below are my thoughts on the subject.

Upapada calculation is one of the enigmas in Jaimini System so is Arudha and Karakamsha. I can not give definitive answer for those questions as I am also student like you all. I have been experimenting on various theories on these concepts, however with logical reasoning with the aid of Jaimini Sutras.

As you may already know, I will not take anything on face from BPHS unless it is substantiated by some other classic literature on Jaimini for I strongly fear BPHS in present form is highly corrupted/ adulterated by whims of scholars to bring out an edition of BPHS on their name. No original commentator of Jaimini resorts to BPHS in explaining Jaimini Sutras except modern scholars of this century.

Coming to Upapada calculation, I sincerely admit that there is no consensus between any two commentators on this concept. As pointed out by Sri Chiraan, there are many houses becoming candidature for UL calculation.

Taking longitudes for Arudha calculation is also wrong as Jaimini clearly mentioned Yavat Eesasrayam Padam Rikshaanaam. It is clearly mentioned only Rasis not longitudes. Please read my article on Tara Lagna published on Saptarishis Astrology to know why longitudes shall not be considered in Jaimini. Astrology is not only simple mathematics and of course maths play a major role in Parashara Astrology. Jaimini takes this to much higher level by adding reflection concept.

padam pitru anucharaat is the key. My guru interprets UL as Arudha of 12th or 2nd house for odd lagna and even lagna respectively.

Sri Chiraan interprets UL as Graha Arudha of PK and 5th lord, which is not acceptable. As Graha Arudhas never the part of Jaimini Astrology and I firmly believe Graha Arudha concept is fanciful addition to the subject by Sri Bala Krishnananda Saraswati, a celebrated commentator of Jaimini Sutras. There after the composers of present BPHS followed the suit.

Scholars may prove the above statement of mine false by substantiating with proof.

Yes, much work need to be done in understanding Arudha and UpaArudha etc. Till then, students shall do well to follow their Guru's teachings on the subject, not like me who is obsessed with Jaimini and keeps returning to starting point many times. But, I feel my journey is satisfying to me as it may sometimes pickup the weeds accidentally.


Shyamasundara Dasa said...

Sadhu Sadhu Sadhu

Excellent response. You are giving me hope for the future of Jyotish in India.

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