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2. The Zodiac - The 12 Signs (Raashi)

The Raashi are based on the monthly motion of The Sun and the monthly Sun/Moon conjunction which happens roughly each 30 days (New Moon). Each month (approximately) the Sun crosses 30 (1/12 part of the whole zodiac), and each month the Moon reaches the Sun after a whole sojourn through the zodiac, the whole 360 cycle.

Raashi are therefore solar based and ruled by the Sun (whereas Nakshatra, the lunar mansions, are lunar based, ruled by Moon).

Raashi spread the energies of a particular 'heap' of fixed stars they contain. They are orientated on the zodiacal signs but not identical with them as the zodiacal signs we see in heaven are of very different lengths, furthermore it is very difficult or nearly impossible to set limits or borders between them.

The idea of Raashi (and their Ansh, parts) and Nakshatra depend on clear mathematical divisions of the zodiac, in the case of Raashi division made by 12, astronomically related to Sun's movement. Other mathematical divisions are those by 27 (Nakshatra) or 108 (Navaansh). These three divisions are the most important ones in astrology.

Divisions of Raashi
A Raashi may be divided in many parts. Its one part is called Varg, with Ansh / parts of signs. So its 30 can be divided by 2, 3, 4, 6, 7, 8, 9, 10, 12, 16, 20, 24, 40, 45 and 60, with particular rules of sign mapping to Raashi Ansh.

Classification of Raashi by Quality/Movement/ Direction:
'Movable' / 'Cardinal ' signs, initiating: Aries/Mesh, Cancer/Kark, Libra/Tulaa, Capricorn/Makar
'Fixed' signs, securing: Taurus/Vrishabh, Leo/Sinh, Scorpio/Vrishchik, Aquarius/Kumbh
'Dual' signs, exploring: Gemini/Mithun, Virgo/Kanyaa, Sagittarius/ Dhanu, Pisces/Meen

Movable/Cardinal Quality: energetic, establishing, initiatives
Fixed Quality: stable and stabilizing, securing, accumulating
Dual Quality: extending, informing, change and exchange

Classification of Raashi by Element (Tattwa):
'Fire' signs, energetic: Aries/Mesh, Leo/Sinh, Sagittarius/ Dhanu
'Earth' signs, materialistic: Taurus/Vrishabh, Virgo/Kanyaa, Capricorn/Makar
'Air' signs, combining: Gemini/Mithun, Libra/Tulaa, Aquarius/Kumbh
'Water' signs, integrating: Cancer/Kark, Scorpio/Vrishchik, Pisces/Meen

Fire Element: active and energetic aim fulfillment, ambitions, self oriented
Earth Element: practical, putting into manifestation, accumulating material wealth
Air Element: communicating, learning and extending, theoretical
Water Element: emotional, relating to inner world, socially oriented

Each sign is a *combination of quality and element*, for example:
Aries: 'Movable' (initiating) and 'Fire' (energetic) and has particular attributes as described above in the ancient scriptures quotations.

The 12 Raashi according to their Gun are:
RAJAS RAASHI (1st cycle - beginning, energetic, creative):
0000' - 2959': (Raashi 1) *Aries* (Mesh) - Movable/Fire
3000' - 5959': (Raashi 2) *Taurus* (Vrishabh) - Fixed/Earth
6000' - 8959': (Raashi 3) *Gemini* (Mithun) - Dual/Air
9000' - 11959': (Raashi 4) *Cancer* (Kark) - Movable/Water

TAMAS RAASHI (2nd cycle - establishing, stable, materially oriented):
12000' - 14959': ( Raashi 5) *Leo* (Sinh) - Fixed/Fire
15000' - 17959': (Raashi 6) *Virgo* (Kanyaa) - Dual/Earth
18000' - 20959': (Raashi 7) *Libra* (Tulaa) - Movable/Air
21000' - 23959': (Raashi 8) *Scorpio* (Vrishchik) - Fixed/Water

SATTWA RAASHI (3rd cycle - finishing, purifying, spiritual):
24000' - 26959': (Raashi 9) *Sagittarius* (Dhanu) - Dual/Fire
27000' - 29959': (Raashi 10) *Capricorn* (Makar) - Movable/Earth
30000' - 32959': (Raashi 11) *Aquarius* (Kumbh) - Fixed/Air
33000' - 35959': (Raashi 12) *Pisces* (Meen) - Dual/Water/Ether

Drishti (Aspects) of Raashi:

Raashi are influencing each other by aspects. Each movable Raashi (Aries, Cancer, Libra, Capricorn) aspects the fixed Raashi (Taurus, Leo, Scorpio, Aquarius) except the one adjacent (close-by) to it. Reversely, each fixed Raashi aspects the movable Raashi except the one adjacent to it. Dual Raashi (Gemini, Virgo, Sagittarius, Pisces) aspect each other. The aspects given by Raashi to other Raashi does include as well the planets posited in it and in the  aspected Raashi.

Example 1: Aries (movable/cardinal sign) automatically gives Drishti to Leo, Scorpio and Aquarius (fixed signs) but not to Taurus because it is a sign close-by to it.
Example 2: Leo (fixed sign) automatically gives Dristhi to Aries, Libra and Capricorn (movable signs) but not to Cancer because it is a sign close-by to it.
Example 3: Sagittarius (dual sign) automatically gives Drishti to Gemini, Virgo and Pisces (the other dual signs).


A Mool-trikon is the root, the source of a planet's energy.

0-12 Aries (Mesh) - Mars (Mangal)
3-30 Taurus (Vrishabh) - Moon (Chandra)
640'-20 Gemini (Mithun) - Raahu
0-20 Leo (Sinh) - The Sun (Soorya)
15-20 Virgo (Kanyaa) - Mercury (Budh)
0-15 Libra (Tulaa) - Venus (Shukra)
0-10 Sagittarius (Dhanu) - Jupiter (Guru)
0-1320' Sagittarius (Dhanu) - Ketu
0-20 Aquarius (Kumbh) - Saturn (Shani)

Exaltation :

Each planet has a particular sign and an exact degree, where his functioning the best way possible. This condition is called 'exaltation'. The exaltation signs and degrees are:

The Sun (Soorya) - at 10 Aries (Meen)
Moon (Chandra) - at 3 Taurus (Vrishabh)
Mars (Mangal) - at 28 Capricorn (Kumbh)
Mercury (Budh) - at 15 Virgo (Kanyaa)
Jupiter (Guru) - at 5 Cancer (Kark)
Venus (Shukra) - at 27 Pisces (Meen)
Saturn (Shani) - at 20 Libra (Tulaa)
Taurus (Kanyaa) - Raahu
Scorpio (Vrishchik) - Ketu

Note: Vayu is the Deity of the wind, Apas Deity of the water, Rudra Deity Storms (of destroying and transformation).

Debilitation :

Planets also obtain a worst placement in zodiac, which is posited directly opposite to their exaltation signs.

Lordships of Raashi:

Each Raashi is influenced by one particular planet, called its 'Lord' or 'Regent'.

(Raashi 1) Aries (Mesh), main sign of Mars, co-lordship by Pluto
(Raashi 2) Taurus (Vrishabh), 2nd sign of Venus, Mool-trikon of Moon
(Raashi 3) Gemini (Mithun), 2nd sign of Mercury, Mool-trikon of Raahu
(Raashi 4) Cancer (Kark), sign of Moon
(Raashi 5) Leo (Sinh), sign of Sun
(Raashi 6) Virgo (Kanyaa), main sign of Mercury
(Raashi 7) Libra (Tulaa), main sign of Venus
(Raashi 8) Scorpio (Vrishchik), 2nd sign of Mars
(Raashi 9) Sagittarius (Dhanu), main sign of Jupiter, Mool-trikona of Ketu
(Raashi 10) Capricorn (Makar), 2nd sign of Saturn
(Raashi 11) Aquarius (Kumbh), main sign of Saturn, co-lordship by Uranus
(Raashi 12) Pisces (Meen), 2nd sign of Jupiter, co-lordship by Neptune

Planets in Raashi

Planets are better placed in some signs ('friendly' signs) and worse placed in other signs ('unfriendly' ) signs. This placement describes the planetary state, the Avasthaa of a planet (how he is feeling - radiant, glad, happy or unhappy, disturbed, furious).

Planets in friendly signs/Ansh are acting like friends and giving better results whereas planets in unfriendly/hostile signs/Ansh are providing more difficult experiences (like a person you do not like or even an enemy).

Planets can be strong (good strength) and weak (low strength). This strength is calculated in Shad Bal, a very differentiated method of ascertaining different strength of planets. Another method is Vinshopak Bal, indicating the hidden strengths of planets and the particular strengths for special life areas. Vinshopak Bal is based on divisional charts, containing the positions of Graha and Upagraha in the Ansh (parts) of the Raashi.

A Graha and Upagraha is always posited
- in a Raashi
- in various divisions of a Raashi (Ansh)
- in a Nakshatra
- in a Bhaav (field, house)



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Created and Maintained by Sushma Gupta
Created on 05/18/2008 and Updated on 10/14/2012