Karma Rebirth and Jyotish by O D Mande

Karma Rebirth and Jyotish by O D Mande

The concept of karma and reincarnation is entrenched in Indian ethos. It may have emanated from the notion  of 8.4 million yonis ( species) through which a soul is believed to pass before he can enter maanav yoni ( human species ),the highest stage of biological evolution. But even after entering human form a soul is believed to pass through an indefinitely long  cycle of death and rebirth according to his karma. In Jyotish the horoscope is believed to be a balance sheet of one’s past karma. However , when a child is born  we seldom think what karma he(she) might have done in the past life except when the child is seen to be far below normal ( say physically/mentally deficient at birth) or turns to be highly deficient/gifted in due course. We sometimes hear about normal and average children who  remembered and narrated their past life  incidents which were found to be true on investigation.

Some research has been done from time to time to study amazing stories of such children . The pioneer in such study was Ian Stevenson ( 1918–2007) who studied many cases of such children. Late  Dr P.V.Vartak MBBS PhD(Litt), a famous siddhayogi, scholar  and researcher of Pune has also given many examples in  a book on reincarnation authored by him. In the recent past Dr Walter Semkiw , Member of the ‘ Board of Directors of International Association for Regression, Research and Therapies ’ has authored a book titled ‘Born Again’,  containing past life details of not ordinary children but international celebrities.  The spiritual classic  ‘Autobiography of a Yogi’  authored by Paramhamsa Yogananda (1893-1952) mentions that his Param Guru (Guru’s Guru) Mahayogi Lahiri Mahasaya (1828—1895) was a  sannyasi (celibate) yogi named Gangadhar in his previous birth. In this article examples of three celebrities  from Dr Semkiw’s book and that of Lahiri Mahasaya  are presented  with astrological  analysis of  their charts..

Example 1. Jawahar Lal Nehru  : (14 Nov 1889 11.21 PM  Allahabad.)

According Dr Semkiw,  Jawahar Lal Nehru  was  the reincarnation of Bahadur Shah Zafar (1775-1862), the last Mughal Emperor.  The Birth and Shastyamsa charts of Nehru are given below followed by their analysis and the relevant history.

Chart 001

In the rasi chart , ascendant lord and Atmakarak Moon is  placed in the ascendant, hemmed between Saturn and Rahu ,the former indicating people’s aspiration for independence and the latter , British rule. The ascendant ,  Moon  and Sun are in sarpa dreshkan . In  the  shastyamsa chart ,  Atmakarak  Moon is  vargottam and under the influence of Rahu and Saturn which confirms Jawahar Lal Nehru’s karma inherited from the previous birth . In the rasi chart the lord of Arudh Lagna is Mars (power) whereas that of Ghati– Lagna is Venus conjunct with Mercury–prominent position in  the field of literature.

The ninth lord is Jupiter conjunct with Ketu implying a soft but tactful Dharma (policy) and their placements in the sixth house indicate a non-violent  form of protest (freedom struggle) as preached by his mentor Mahatma Gandhi.  He followed  the  same policy as the Prime Minister of India ,  particularly the foreign policy in maintaining good relations with  neighboring countries  as well as both superpowers USA and USSR , who were very inimical  in  those days. During his tenure (1947-1964)  Five Year Plans for India’s economic growth were launched and a number of new projects for India’s development viz Steel Plants , large  dams  like Bhakra, Hirakud, Nagarjuna Sagar etc. for irrigation and power, new engineering/medical colleges were taken up.

As mentioned earlier he looked at neighboring countries as friends and believed that they too would look at India as a friend. The slogan “ Hindi-Chini Bhai Bhai” (Indians and Chinese are like brothers) was very popular in those days. But this belief was shattered by the most unexpected Chinese aggression in October 1962 . India’s  defense forces were unprepared for that surprise attack and  faced  a humiliating defeat . Nehru and his cabinet colleagues had to face the ire of the public and politicians. V K. Krishna Menon, then Defense Minister, bore the brunt and resigned. All this had a debilitating effect on Nehru . 

His health deteriorated and he passed away on May 27, 1964.  Nevertheless, the debacle of 1962  did serve as a wake–up call for  India’s   defense  preparedness. The defense sector was strengthened as a top priority.  This was proved  with India’s victory  in the wars with Pakistan in 1965 and again in1971.                                 

In the Shastyamsa (which shows past karma) the ascendant is  Pisces( Kubera  shastyamsa)   aspected by Rahu ( Aardra shastyamsa) .  Atmakarak Moon is in ( Maheswara shastyamsa –great lord) but conjoined with Rahu ( British rule) placed in the house of power , indicating the plight of Bahadur Shah Zafar ( 1775-1862) ,  the namesake  Mughal  Emperor   whose rule did not extend beyond the Red Fort !  . The placement of Arudh Lagna and its lord Jupiter in the fourth  house is fine but  Ghati Lagna  (power and authority)  in the 12th house shows that he wielded hardly any power . However , GL is aspected by Mercury and Venus being in trine with Mercury ,  made Zafar a poet of high standing. Atmakarak  Moon  has the aspect of Saturn ( Brahma shastyamsa) and argala of Mars (Vish–dagdha shastyamsa ) indicating . people’s aspiration for freedom from British rule ,  even if violence becomes  unavoidable . The Badshah himself must have nurtured a longing to become a sovereign Emperor but was unable to fulfill it with his limited might.  So , when the mutineers of 1857 requested him to give his leadership to the  struggle,  he might have been tempted to give his consent in that hope though he was 82 at that time.

At the mutineers’ request  he   issued a Shahi  Firman  (Emperor’s decree) on 12 May 1857 exhorting Hindus and Muslims to join the revolt against British. During the initial few months, the mutineers had upper hand but in due course the tables were turned.  When the victory of British became certain, Zafar and his close relations hid  themselves at the Humayun Tomb.  But they were compelled to surrender on 20th Sept1857.

The next day his both sons were executed at the Khooni  Darwaja near Delhi Gate.  Later on ,  after  a show of trial  Zafar  was exiled to Rangoon , Burma ( now Yangoon ,  Myanmar)  in 1858 with his wife and some family members. He died there on 7th Sept 1862. His wish to  see India liberated from British rule and become her  sovereign Emperor  remained unfulfilled in his lifetime.

That is why Nehru was very eager to become and did manage to become Prime Minister despite Congress Working Committee’s full support to Sardar Patel  Zafar was a person of sober temperament and a scholar. He was  a noted poet and wrote many ghazals. His court was a home to Urdu writers of high standing like Ghalib, Dagh, Mumin and Zauq.  Nehru too, was  a soft natured person and a gifted  writer. Whenever one thinks of him as a writer ,  his masterpiece  work  ‘Discovery  of India’ comes to one’s mind.                                       

Example2: Indira Gandhi  (19 November 1917  11.07 PM Allahabad )

Chart 002

In Rasi the lagna is occupied By Saturn . hemmed between Mars and Ketu , both being lords of fifth house of emotion / intelligence.  Mars is yogakarak and the lord of both Arudh Lagna and Ghati Lagna ( placed the house of karma) and occupies the second house  whereas  Sun  & Mercury are posited in the fifth house of  emotion/ intelligence whose co-lord is Ketu. The fifth house has the aspect of the ninth lord Jupiter. The placement of Rahu in the sixth house indicates the tendency to deal with the opponents firmly without hesitation.

These features  gave Indira Gandhi great courage in the discharge of duty and the reputation of being  “the only man in the Cabinet !“ In the Birth chart lagna lord Moon is  posited  in the sign of Atmakarak Saturn , who in turn, is placed in the lagna . In the Shastyamsa chart Sagittarius (Bhrashta shastyamsa )  rises  with Moon (Chandramukhi shastyamsa) in lagna whereas Atmakarak Saturn ( Amrit shastyamsa ) is placed in the third house of valour  and the fifth house is owned and occupied by Mars ( Daavaagni shastyamsa). 

These astrological  features   indicate that she had carried these qualities from her previous birth. She demonstrated  her courage during  the 1971 war with Pakistan which led to the creation of Bangladesh  and again in 1984  during Operation Blue star,  which was unavoidable for the integrity of India .But it  infuriated Sikh hardliners and, unfortunately, she had to pay  for this with her life when she was assassinated by her own bodyguards on Oct 31, 1984. In the Rasi  third house from AL (which shows the circumstances of death) is occupied by Ketu  and aspected by  Venus  (fourth lord in sixth house ) and Rahu  clearly indicating death  by treacherous  act of her  bodyguards posted at  the residence. The sixth house  contains Sagittarius sign owned by Jupiter ( Guru) implying that the assassins were Sikh – followers of Guru.                 

According  to Dr Semkiw  Nanasaheb  Peshwa had reincarnated as Indira Gandhi. Nana Peshwa (born in 1824) was a prominent leader of the 1857 war of independence. Nana had succeeded in defeating British forces and  taking control of Cawnpore (now Kanpur) for a short period. But in the end, the British regained control of their Indian territories and they were very brutal in seeking revenge for British deaths. However,  Nana escaped death and  was routed from Cawnpore. It is said that he had  escaped to Nepal . 

However , it is not known for certain  when and where he died.  Prof ( late) K. V .Belsare , a noted Marathi  author of spiritual literature,  has  authored a book on Shri  Gondavalekar Maharaj ( 1845-1913) of Maharashtra in which  he states that Nana had  taken to a spiritual way of life as advised by that saint and that Nana died in 1906 . Dr Semkiw states, analysis of facial features  reveals that the facial architecture between Nana and  Indira Gandhi is consistent. A review of their personalities  indicates some common character traits. In particular, both Nana and Indira demonstrated a tendency to be authoritarian and to use military force. When Nana took control of Cawnpore he placed his foes behind bars , just as when Indira Gandhi called a state of Emergency in 1975, she had her adversaries arrested !

However,  notwithstanding all this  the fact remains that  India had a great  Prime Minister in her. But for the bold actions taken by her in 1971 and 1984  India  would have suffered great miseries and probably Khalistan would have been carved out of Punjab  as a separate nation .  

In this way , two leaders of the First War of Independence  reincarnated, as father and daughter, to be part of the attainment of Indian Independence in 1947,  nine decades after  the  Sepoys  initiated the process in 1857. This reminds the author of an incident in the life of Vasudev Balawant  Phadke ( 1845 -1883) a firebrand revolutionary of 19th century  who fought against the British in Maharashtra in the post 1857 period.  He had  gone  to   Akkalkot ( a town in Maharashtra) to seek the blessings  of Shri Swami  Samarth Maharaj, a great sage of that time,   for success in his mission . But the Sage did not bless him .

The Sage, who had attained  the state of timelessness ,must have known that India was not destined to get  Independence in near future. Some admirers of  Veer Savarkar believe that  Phadke had  reincarnated  as  Savarkar  to complete the mission of his life .                                                 

Example 3: Amitabh Bachchan   (11 October 1942  3.50 PM  Allahabad). 

chart 003
Chart 004

Amitabh Bachchan is regarded as the greatest actor Bollywood ever had. He has been dominating  Bollywood since 1969 i.e., for over five  decades. He has acted in over a hundred movies, many of which have proved super hits. He is still active in Bollywood, has been  hosting a popular  TV show “ Kaun Banega Crorepati” and has endorsed many consumer goods. One wonders whether there will be another actor like him just as whether there will be another Lata Mangeshkar !. In his Rasi  chart, Aquarius rises with Ketu in it, aspected by Saturn to give a  slim but well built figure. The second lord is exalted Jupiter aspecting ( rashi drishti) Arudh Lagna (AL) in Taurus and the ascendant. The Atmakarak is Sun conjunct Mercury, Venus & Mars.  All these planets, particularly  exalted Mercury,  have the argala of Moon from the ninth house (fortune) indicating  that his voice will be a great asset in his career as actor .

The lord of AL and GL is debilitated Venus indicating  many difficulties before marriage ( Venus) and fortune ( Venus as ninth lord)  smile at him. Venus is conjunct Mars (courage to face competitions and  be successful ) , Sun ( fame and recognition)   and exalted Mercury ( acting/ dancing talent) .The neechbhanga of Venus can be done either by Jupiter or Mercury if they are in quadrants from lagna or Moon or are exalted. Both are exalted but posited in dusthanas ; Jupiter being in quadrant from Moon. 

The Moon in Libra has rashi aspect on Lagna,  lagnesh Saturn  and AL ensuring fame and a large fan following. The Shastyamsa  chart also has Aquarius ascendant ( Sudhaa shastyamsa)  making  it vargottam . The Atmakarak  Sun (Pureeksha shastyamsa) is also vargottam. Sun is the dispositor of Mercury (apaamti shastyamsa ) and Jupiter ( Brhamana shastyamsa )  both aspecting lagna and GL.

Arudh Lagna is in Sagittarius  aspected by tenth lord Mars implying competition/obstacles in the profession and the capacity to overcome them. The lord of AL is  Jupiter conjunct Mercury aspecting lagna and GL. Jupiter is  also the dispositor of exalted ninth lord Venus .The lord of lagna and Ghati Lagna (GL) is Saturn conjunct Moon and  tenth co-lord Ketu, having exalted Venus in trine ensuring a  powerful position in the field of acting.  These features indicate that Amitabh Bachchan has inherited his  acting skill  from his previous birth. According to Dr Semkiw  that person was Edwin Thomas  Booth ( 1833-1893)  a famous American stage actor of 1860s. Besides acting skill Booth  had a deep and rich voice which Amitabh has  inherited.

Booth toured throughout USA and major capitals of Europe, performing Shakespearean plays. In 1869 he founded the  Booth’s Theatre in New York , a spectacular  theatre of that time. Edwin Booth was married to Mary Devlin in 1860 but she died in1863. Later on,  he married  Mc Vickers  in 1869 but became a widower again in 1881. His brother John  Wikes  Booth was  the assassin of then US President Abraham Lincoln. But Edwin Booth had saved  Robert, son of Lincoln , from  a train accident and possible death .

According to Dr Semkiw  Booth’s both wives have also reincarnated; Mary Devlin as Bollywood star Rekha and Mc Vickers as Jaya Bhaduri  Bachchan. Amitabh and Rekha  together have done twenty movies but during the making of  ‘Silsila’( 1980-1981) they were reported to have  come rather too close which could be due to their previous birth affinity as husband and wife. 

The vimsottari dasa at that time was Saturn-Venus; Saturn being the owner of Pardara saham and Venus being the lord of  Upapada Lagna( UL)  in Shastyamsa chart representing Mary Devlin  reborn as Rekha. At that  time Saturn was transiting natal Venus of  the Rasi chart, posing  a threat to stability of marriage.

Fortunately, Jupiter was also transiting natal Venus at that time which saved the situation. When Amitabh was critically injured on 26 July 1982 in the intestines while filming a fight sequence of “Coolie” which almost cost him his life , it was Rekha who had organized a special pooja  for his recovery at the Mahakaleshwar temple (one of the 12 jyotirlingas—Shiva temples) of Ujjain.  These  events  corroborate a popular belief that  souls closely attached in one lifetime tend to come close in another lifetime to settle their give and take accounts , good or bad.         

Example 4: Lahiri Mahasaya  ( 30 Sept. 1828  .  9:27:55 A. M. 88E30 23N24 , 5.54 Hrs East of GMT )                                    

Chart 005

Lahiri Mahasaya( 1828-1895) was a Mahayogi of 19thcentury and a contemporary of Shri Ramakrishna Paramhamsa. His original name was Shyam Charan Lahiri . Until the age of 33 years he was a normal worldly man , being a householder and employed in Govt service. In1861, he came in contact  with Mahavatar Babaji, the deathless Guru who is believed to have initiated eminent masters of the past viz. Adi Shankaracharya and Tukaram. During their meeting  Babaji remarked that Lahiri  was his ( Babaji’s)  sannyasi-disciple named Gangadhar  in the previous birth. With Babaji’s grace Lahiri went into a deep samadhi and realized that  indeed he had been  Babaji’s disciple in the previous birth. That experience was a turning point in  Lahiri’s  life . He took to kriya yoga again, made fast progress and became a Great Master himself. He did not renounce worldly life but lived as a householder , brought up five children and did Govt service till the age of superannuation. Unlike Shri Ramakrishna he did not condemn ‘women and gold ‘ but advocated the path of moderation and duty without attachment. Trailanga Swami (1607-1887) ,  a  contemporary  sannyasi- mahayogi  was full of praise for Lahiri Mahasaya as he had reached  the pinnacle in spirituality without renouncing worldly life.  He was  the Guru of Swami Sri Yukteswar (1855-1936) a great yogi , astronomer and astrologer, who in turn, was the Guru of Parahamsa Yogananda.                                

Astrologically, the  big change that occurred in Lahiri Mahasaya’s life can be attributed to charkarak replacement involving Atmakarak (Mars) and Amatyakarak (Venus) as they are at the same degree. Venus replaces Mars as Atmakarak and the slot of Amatyakarak   gets occupied  by sthirkarak Jupiter. This replacement also signifies  Lahiri’s Venusian spiritual  ( pursuit of spirituality within the comforts of a household ) as against the  Mars-like path          (full of struggle and hardships) followed by him in  the previous birth as sanyasi Gangadhar. 

 In the Rasi   ascendant lord  Mars is  also Atmakarak placed in the second house aspected by  ninth  lord Moon. Jupiter is the dispositor of Mars and   Ketu  and occupies  twelfth house of salvation with eighth lord Mercury. Mokshakarak  Ketu   occupies fifth house of emotion . The placement of Jupiter ( representing Guru ) conjunct Mercury (representing  shishya ) in the twelfth house  ensures the highest attainments in spirituality. Arudh Lagna  is in Capricorn  aspected by Saturn & Venus signifying  a good position in the society. Ghati lagna’s placement in the eighth house conjunct Moon  with dispositor Mercury in  twelfth house of moksha signifies  exalted  stage as a Mahayogi . Venus , Saturn and Ketu form  tapaswi yoga  which comes as no surprise in  the  chart of a Great Master.                          

In the Shastyamsa chart,  lagna ( Saumya shastyamsa) is occupied by lagnesh Venus ( Raakshas  shastyamsa) hemmed between spiritual  Ketu (Garal shastyamsa)  and rigorous  Saturn ( Poorna Chandra shastyamsa). Atmakarakark   Mars (Bhramana shastyamsa)  occupies  the sixth house of struggle in the sign of lagnesh ‘Venus.  The ninth lord Moon ( Kaala shastyamsa) of Rasi  chart is  conjunct Jupiter( Seetal shastyamsa) in the fourth house with dispositor Sun ( Garal shastyamsa)  in the eleventh house  indicating evils/dangers in the path of spiritual progress.  These astrological features confirm  that Lahiri Mahasaya must have been an advanced yogi named Gangadhar in his previous birth as remarked by his Guru Mahavatar Babaji.  However , no details of Gangadhar’s life are available.  

It seems Lahiri  had a latent wish in his mind to enjoy the beauty and comfort of a palace but was unable to overcome it. Babaji was aware of  Lahiri’s predicament  and in order to free him from the last bond of karma he ( Babaji) created a magnificent palace in the  Himalayas  with his yogic power and asked Lahiri to enjoy it’s beauty and comfort for some time. After Lahiri’s wish had been satisfied  he was given kriya yoga initiation by  Babaji  in that very palace.   Paramhamsa  Yogananda  has  given a  vivid  description of this miraculous incident in his  autobiography. 

Other Examples

Dr Semkiw  has given past life details of many other celebrities in the book . Some of these celebrities , with their past birth names shown in bracket, are as follows :,  Dr Vikram Sarabhai (Haider Ali –father of Tipu Sultan) and J K Rowling—author of Harry Potter comics ( Charles Dickens). Paramhamsa Yogananda’s autobiography  contains  a fascinating story of the rebirth of his disciple named Kashi. Swami Vivekananda was the reincarnation of one of the Saptarishis (seven great sages of ancient time) as remarked by his Guru Shri Ramakrishna. Dr. P V Vartak ‘s book on rebirth contains the story of a child prodigy named Sanjiv Sharma who could recite any verse from the Geeta and also explain its meaning when he was just five years old ! According to Dr Vartak that boy had studied Geeta in his past birth as one of the disciples of Shri Gondavalekar Maharaj ( 1845–1913)  of Maharashtra.                               


The examples  discussed in this paper clearly brings out that one’s skills, temperament, unfulfilled desires etc– in short one’s karma — gets carried from lifetime to lifetime . In each life a person tries to fulfill  them but in the process he acquires  new desires, making his karmic burden heavier instead of lighter. Jyotish can help one in understanding one’s  karma and how best to lighten karmic burden in life and move a little closer to God. The Bhagvatgeeta’s doctrine of performing one’s duty without selfish motive aims at this very goal.The author feels understanding one’s karma ought to be the  primary purpose of Jyotish, the timing of materialistic  events like marriage, childbirth , professional gains etc being secondary.                                     

References                                  (1)’ Born Again ‘ by Dr. Walter Semkiw ( Ritana Books )

 (2 ) ‘Autobiography of a Yogi’ by Paramhamsa Yogananda

 (3) ’ Puran Purush —  Lahiri Mahasaya ‘

 (4) Astrology books

 (5) Information gathered from the Net

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