1. Papamochani Ekadashi: The Ekadashi that falls in the krishna paksha of the month of Chaitra / Vishnu (March-April when the full Moon will conjoin the Chitra star) is called Papamochini. The main Deities are Anirudha and His wife Sushila. Mogra flowers and fruits should be used for the prayers. A calf should be offered in charity. This Ekadashi destroys all sin.
2. Vimala (Kamada) Ekadashi: The Ekadashi that falls in shukla paksha of Chaitra/ Vishnu month grants every wish. Hence it is called Vimala or Kamada. The main Deities are Lord Vishnu and His wife Ramaa. Fruits (especially mango), flowers and laddu of dal should be offered. One should give sweets in charity. This Ekadashi frees one from any sort of curse. Be sure your kama (desire) is pure (vimala).
3. Varuthini Ekadashi: The Ekadashi that falls in krishna paksha of Vaishaka / Madhusudan (April-May when the full Moon will conjoin Vishakha nakshatra) is called Varuthini. Observing it, the devotee becomes freed of all accumulated sins. One should pray unto Lord Purushottama and His wife Nanda while offering fruits and champaka flowers. One may also offer land on this Ekadashi. This Ekadashi frees one from all pre-accumulated sins.
4. Mohini Ekadashi: The Ekadashi that falls in shukla paksha of Vaishaka / Madhusudan (April-May) is called Mohini Ekadashi. The devotee should pray to Lord Madhusudana along with His wife Madhvi and offer larger varieties of fruits along with flowers and milk. Give a bed in charity. Observance of this Ekadashi equals the merit of giving away 1,000 cows.
5. Apara Ekadashi: The Ekadashi that falls in the krishna paksha of Jyeshta / Trivikrama (May-June when the full Moon conjoins Jyeshta nakshatra) is called Apara Ekadashi. One should pray before Trayi and Her husband Adhokshaja with the flowers of fruit-bearing trees along with offerings of milk and rice. One should give a cow along with her calf for charity. This Ekadashi uplifts one to either heaven or even to the eternal spiritual world of Vaikuntha.
6. Nirjala Ekadashi: The Ekadashi that falls in shukla paksha of Jyeshta / Trivikrama month is called Nirjala Ekadashi. One may pray to Lord Trivikrama along with His wife Padmakshi while offering Them flowers such as mango, water, flowers, incense and a brightly burning lamp. Offerings which should be given to a brahmana include milk and rice along with a water pot and an umbrella. This Ekadashi grants the results of all other Ekadashis.
7. Yogini Ekadashi: The Ekadashi that fall in krishna paksha of Ashadha / Vamana (June-July when the Moon, when full, will conjoin Purvashadha) is known as Yogini Ekadashi. The devotee may supplicate Lord Narasimhadeva and His wife Kshemankari with flowers and fruits. Offerings of sweets should be made. Observance of this Ekadashi-vrata is as meritorious as feeding eighty-eight thousand brahmanas. It endows the devotee with all beauty and liberation.
8. Devashayani Ekadashi: The Ekadashi that fall in shukla paksha of Ashadha / Vamana (June-July) is known as Devashayani, Shayana or Padma Ekadashi. Lord Vamana and His wife Kamala are supplicated with flowers and coconut. A well-decorated cow may be given in charity. This Ekadashi grants plenty of foodstuffs and riches. It also marks the beginning of chaturmasya-vrata and is the beginning of Lord Vishnu’s sayana or rest.
9. Kamika Ekadashi: The Ekadashi that falls in krishna paksha of the month of Shravana / Shridhar (July-August when the Moon conjoins Shravana nakshatra on the purnima day) is known as Kamika Ekadashi. Lord Achyuta and His wife Kamika are prayed with a garland of Parijata flowers and fruits. Offerings of clothes to men and women are given away as alms. This Ekadashi grants respects by all and liberation with no chance for future births in the material world.
10. Pavitropana Ekadashi: The Ekadashi that falls in shukla paksha of Shravana / Shridhar month is also called Putrada Ekadashi. One should supplicate Janardana along with His wife Sundari with flowers and fruits and offerings of laddus made from brown sugar. A buffalo may be given in charity. This Ekadashi grants a son.
11. Annada Ekadashi: The Ekadashi that falls in the krishna paksha of Bhadra / Hrishikesa month (August-September when the full Moon is conjoined Purvabhadrapada) is called Annada or Aja. Lord Krishna with His wife Sulakshana are supplicated with the flowers of sesame and coconut. Offerings of flowers, fruits, sweet rice and laddu made from brown sugar are appropriate as well as charity of bull or buffalo. This Ekadashi can make a poor man rich.
12. Parivartini Ekadashi: The Ekadashi that fall in shukla paksha of Bhadra / Hrishikesha month is also called Parshva, Jayanti or Vamana Ekadashi. Offering flowers profusely, one should pray to Hrishikesha along with His wife Aparajitaa. This is the day when Lord Vishnu, sleeping, turns upon His other side. Give a qualified person some yogurt mixed with rice. This Ekadashi grants all kinds of happiness.
13. Indira Ekadashi: The Ekadashi that falls in krishna paksha of the month of Ashvina / Padmanabha (September-October when the full Moon conjoins Ashvini) is called Indira Ekadashi. Upendra and His wife Subhagaa are prayed to with durva grass and the fruit of imli. Worship shaligram at noon, offer oblations with ghee into the sacred fire, and tarpana directed to assist your forefathers. Next, feed qualified brahmanas prasadam made with appropriate ingredients and offer them charity according to your means. Now take the pinda which you have offered to your forefathers, smell it, and then offer it to a cow. Next, worship Lord Hrishikesha with incense and flowers, and finally, remain awake all night near the Deity of Lord Sri Keshava. Offer jalebis as prasadam. This Ekadashi-vrata grants freedom from sins accumulated from forefathers.
14. Pashankusha Ekadashi: The Ekadashi that falls in shukla paksha of Ashvina / Padmanabha month is called Pashankush Ekadashi. At this time one may pray unto Padmanabha and His wife Padmavati. Leaves, ghee and laddu made from rice flour mixed with large pieces of sugar are given in charity. This Ekadashi makes one immune to the suffering given by Yamaraja and gives all kinds of pleasures.
15. Ramaa Ekadashi: The Ekadashi that falls in krishna paksha of the month of Karttika / Damodara (October-November when the full Moon conjoins Krittika) is called Ramaa Ekadashi. Hari and His wife Hirni are prayed to with flowers. Banana, a pot of ghee and large pieces of sugar are offered. He who observes this Ekadashi may obtain a kingdom.
16. Parabodhini Ekadashi: The Ekadashi that falls in shukla paksha of Karttika / Damodara month is called Parabodhini, Devotthana or Haribodhini. Lord Damodara with His wife Radha are supplicated with lotus flowers, offerings of mung dal and lotus seeds. The supplicant must worship Tulasi Devi. If a devotee offers a single yellow flower of the ketaki, or wood-apple, tree to Lord Vishnu, Who rides upon Garuda, he is freed from the sins of ten million births. Furthermore, one who offers Lord Jagannatha flowers and also a hundred leaves anointed with red and yellow sandalwood paste will certainly come to reside in Svetadvipa, far beyond the coverings of this material creation. Donate a cow and dakshina to a brahmana as well as a bed. This Ekadashi grants all wishes and gives the result of 10,000 sacrifices. The Lord awakens on this day.
17. Utpanna Ekadashi: The Ekadashi that falls in the krishna paksha of Margashirsha / Keshava (November-December when the full Moon conjoins Margashirsha) is also called Safla Ekadashi. One should pray to Sankarshana along with His wife Sunanda. One should offer fruits, flowers from the Magnolia tree and laddu made from brown sugar. Charity of gold is meritorious on this Ekadashi. This Ekadashi is a giver of a kingdom and can even free one from the sin of killing a brahmana.
18. Mokshada Ekadashi: The Ekadashi that falls on the shukla paksha of Margashirsha / Keshava is called Mokshada Ekadashi. The Deity to be prayed is Lord Keshava along with His wife Shrinam. Also known as Gita Jayanti, on this day Shri Krishna spoke Bhagavad Gita to Arjuna. One should offer oranges, fried laddu and seven types of grains, etc. (wheat, corn, rice, sesame seeds, barley, semolina and dal) in charity. This Ekadashi gives full and perfect liberation after death and uplifts one from hellish conditions.
19. Saphala Ekadashi: The Ekadashi that falls in the krishna paksha of the month of Paush / Narayana (December-January when the full Moon will conjoin Pushyami) is called Saphala Ekadashi. The main deity is Vasudeva along with His wife Shripriya. One should offer garments, flowers and sesame seeds as charity. This Ekadashi gives fame.
20. Putrada Ekadashi: The Ekadashi that falls in the shukla paksha of Pausha / Narayana month is called Sananda, Mukkoti or Vaikuntha Ekadashi. One should pray to Narayana and His wife Padma offering green flowers or flowers of the guggul tree. One should make flat bread and laddu out of halva. One may offer pomegranates along with a pot of ghee in charity. This Ekadashi gives a son.
21. Triprisha Ekadashi: The Ekadashi that falls in krishna paksha of the month of Magha / Madhava (January-February when the full Moon conjoins Makha) is also called Sat-tila Ekadashi. One should pray to Paramatma Madhava and His wife Nitya. One should use flowers and fruits. One should give away sesame seeds in any form. Offer the Lord pumpkin, coconut and guava. This Ekadashi gives as many years in heaven as sesame seeds are donated.
22. Bhaimi Ekadashi: The Ekadashi that falls in shukla paksha of Magha/ Madhava month is also called Jaya Ekadashi. One should pray to Pradyumna and His wife Dhi. Tulasi leaves should be used in the puja. Lemon should be used in the puja. Footwear may be offered in charity. Its observance grants that the one will never have to experience a ghostly existence.
23. Vijaya Ekadashi: The Ekadashi that falls in krishna paksha of the month of Phalguna / Govinda (February-March when the full Moon conjoins Uttaraphalguni). It grants victory and is also known as Maghvadi Ekadashi. One should pray to Pradyumna and His wife Dhi. Tulasi leaves should be used in the puja with offerings of lemon. Footwear may be given in charity.
24. Dhatri or Amalaki Ekadashi: The Ekadashi that falls in shukla paksha of Phalguna / Govinda month is known variously as Amalaki Ekadashi. The main Deity is Govinda and His wife Chandravati. Flowers and apricot should be offered. Give a pot of sesame seeds in charity. This Ekadashi grants wealth (either the wealth of this world or the next).
25/26. Kamala Ekadashi: The two Ekadashis that fall in Adhik month or the intercalary month of Purushottama are called Padmini (shukla paksha) and Parama (krishna paksha). The main Deity is Lord Shri Purushottama. These are most wonderful Ekadashis. Padmini Ekadashi gives all joy and Parama Ekadashi is a giver of ultimate liberation.
If a person has no means to strictly follow the Ekadashi vrata, he should offer tulasi leaves to Shri Krishna and offer donation according to his capacity. One should give up greed, anger and idleness on Ekadashi day. By bowing before and praying directly to the Deities of Shri Shri Radha-Krishna, the devotee has prayed to all of the above Deities as They all reside in the Form of the Supreme Lord of Goloka Vrindavana Shri Krishna.
PLANETS OF THE KUMBA MELA
Stars of the Ocean of Nectar
Devotees of ISKCON join the throng of pilgrims to perform puja to the Triveni during Kumbha Mela
As described in the 8th canto of Shrimad Bhagavatam, long, long ago at the beginning of creation the demigods and demons cajoled the king of snakes Vasuki to act as their rope in order to churn the Ocean of Milk. With the object in mind of extracting the nectar of immortality from the ocean, they set about churning. As all devotees know, once the nectar manifested Lord Vishnu appeared and personally supervised the task of distribution to insure that the nectar would go to the demigods. Nonetheless once the demigods had control of the nectar, the guru of the demons Shukracharya expressed his dissatisfaction with the turn of events. He urged his demon followers to chase after the demigods and seize the nectar from them.
Noting the determination of Shukracharya, the guru of the demigods, Brihaspati passed the nectar-filled pot or kumbha to Jayanta, the son of Indra. Brihaspati ordered the other demigods to protect Jayanta while he battled with Shukracharya. Wishing to lay their hands upon the pot of nectar, the demons chased after the demigods for twelve days. In the meantime the demigods were drinking the nectar although they were forced to move from here to there being pursued by the followers of Shukracharya.
Fatigued, Jayanta needed to pause at four places in order to rest. Meanwhile, Chandra, the demi-god of the Moon and controller of the ocean tides, made sure that the son of Indra did not spill any of the liquid of immortality. The all-seeing demigod of the Sun guarded the vessel that it should not be broken. The grave and serious Shani or Saturn, who controls the results of karma, guarded Jayanta that he should not be tempted to drink any of the nectar by himself. Despite being watched by the powerful demigods, Jayanta spilled a few drops of nectar at the each of the four places where he rested. Those four places became the Kumbha Mela-stans. They are Prayag, Haridwar, Ujjain, and Nasik.
Ever since time immemorial, those who desire the benefit of the nectar of immortality attend these Kumba Melas. The demigods were chased for twelve days which equals twelve Earthly years. Twelve years also equals one tour of Jupiter through the twelve signs of the zodiac and indicates that the demigods traveled throughout the entire universe while being chased by the demons. Attending the Kumbha Mela—whether at Prayag, Nasik, Ujjain or Haridwar—is therefore equal to a trip around the entire universe.
There are special astrological configurations which determine when a Kumbha Mela is held at each of the four punya bhimis. The Sun, Jupiter and Moon all played an important role in keeping the nectar from the hands of the demons. Therefore the time of the Kumbha Mela becomes fixed as per the astrological positions of these three planets.
—Kumbha Mela is held at Haridwar in Uttarakhand—where the holy Ganga leaps from the mighty Himalayas and enters the plains—when Jupiter is in Aquarius and Sun enters Aries (Guru Kumbha, Surya Mesha).
—Kumbha Mela is held at Prayag—modern day Allahabad at the confluence of the Ganga, Yamuna and mystical Saraswati—when Jupiter is in Aries and the Sun and Moon enter Capricorn (Guru Mesha, Surya-Chandra Makara). Or when Jupiter is in Taurus and Sun enters Capricorn around the new moon day in the month of Magha (Guru Vrishabha, Makara Sankranti, Magha Amavashya). A similar configuration marked the start of the Kumbha Mela at Prayag this year.
—Kumbha Mela is held on the banks of Kshipra River at Ujjain in Madhya Pradesh when Jupiter is in Scorpio and Sun enters Aries (Guru Vrischika, Surya Mesha—Scorpio and Aries are the two signs owned by Mars, and Ujjain is the birth place of Mars or Mangal, just beside the Sandipani Muni Ashram). Or when Jupiter enters Libra and Sun and Moon remain together in the month of Damodar (Guru Tula, Kartik Amavashya). This latter Kumbha Mela is called Moksha Dayak Kumbha and attendance carries the promise of freedom from all material bondage.
—Kumbha Mela is held on the banks of the Godavari River at Nasik in Maharashtra when Jupiter and Sun are in Leo (Guru, Surya Simha). Or when Jupiter, Sun and Moon enter Cancer on the day of the dark Moon (Guru, Surya, Chandra Karkataka).
This year the Kumbha Mela began on Makara Sankranti when the Sun entered Capricorn which occured on 14 January. As explained in the Bhagavata’s Fifth Canto, this moment marks Surya Narayana’s change from his southern path (dakshinayana or the region of the pitris) into his northern route (uttarayana) and into the region of the devatas. When the mela begins on Makara Sankranti it becomes especially auspicious and is called Kumbha Snana-yoga. On the day of Makara Sankranti the passage from our Earth into the higher planets opens up and thus allows the soul easy attainment of the celestial regions. For such reasons, the Kumbha Mela is popular among many classes of elevationists in India and throughout the world.
Devotees of Shri Krishna are usually not so much interested in attending the Kumbha Mela for any sort of material reward since they have no interest in promotion to the higher material planes. However even Shrila Prabhupada attended the festival during 1971 (the ardha-kumbha or“6-year half mela”) and in 1977 (the purna-kumbha). By his example Shrila Prabhupada showed that it is always beneficial for devotees to preach the ultimate message of Krishna consciousness to aspiring transcendentalists on such occasions. As far as personal rewards are concerned, the devotee’s view of such melas is explained by Shrila Prabhupada in his discussion of Prayag’s yearly Magha Mela in Shri Chaitanya Charitamrita, Madhya-lila 18.145, Purport):
“‘If one goes to Prayaga and bathes at the confluence of the Ganges and Yamuna in the month of Magha, he attains the result of giving hundreds and thousands of cows in charity. Simply by bathing for three days there, he attains the results of such a pious activity.’
Because of this, the Sanodiya brahmana was very eager to go to Prayaga and bathe. Generally karmis (fruitive laborers) take advantage of bathing there during the month of Magha, thinking that they will be rewarded in the future. Those who are situated in devotional service do not very strictly follow this karma-kandiya process.”
ABOUT RAHU AND KETU
“It is sometimes said that when one is influenced by evil stars like Saturn, Rāhu or Ketu, he cannot make advancement in any prospective activity.” (SB 7.4.37. Bhaktivedanta purport)
Ketu is the severed body of Rahu. When a person becomes influenced by Ketu (the south node of the Moon) he acts as if he doesn't have a head. His head is lost in remembering the past and in trying to re-enact his past actions again. The influence of Ketu demonstrates the irrelevance of time past to our present existence. During periods of life that are influenced by Ketu, such as Ketu mahadasha or bhuktis, the living entity clings to illusions created in the past as if they continue to exist in the present. At times those illusions have nothing to do with the present body, but are traces of existence from previous lives. What is the use of forcing a fish to live out of water?
Rahu is the exact opposite of Ketu, or the other side of the same coin. Being the head, his main senses are intact, and through their help he is aware that he can obtain everything he wants. Rahu gives the desire to daydream about the future, wherein the soul can lose himself in what is going to be. By his own accord Rahu also keeps the soul locked away from the present moment.
The eighth canto, ninth chapter of the Bhagavata Purana describes the birth of Rahu and Ketu. Shrila Prabhupada comments in his summary of that chapter, “But one demon, named Rāhu, dressed himself like a demigod and sat down in the line of the demigods. He sat beside the Sun and the Moon. When the Supreme Personality of Godhead understood how Rāhu was cheating, He immediately cut off the demon’s head. Rāhu, however, had already tasted the nectar, and therefore although his head was severed, he remained alive.”
The clever demon Rahu, plotted to drink the nectar of immortality to which only the demigods were entitled. The Sun and the Moon, who are the eyes of God in this universe, spotted Rahu sitting in the midst of the demigods. They reported his presence to Lord Vishnu. Then Shri Vishnu in the form of a beautiful woman named Mohini Murti sent His chakra to behead Rahu, who had just begun drinking the nectar. Though his head was severed, the nectar remained in his throat giving him immortality. Ketu, the separated body of Rahu died in an instant but bears the mark of the divine weapon of Vishnu.
Had Mohini Murti not severed the head of Rahu, then the whole body of the demon would have stayed alive. But that is not possible in the same way that neither the past nor the future can be united with the present in the material world. It is similarly impossible for the soul to become God and live independently from Lord Shri Krshna. The connection of past, present and future is only possible for the liberated living entity in the company of the Supreme Personality of Godhead, but not in the material world where time is divided. Rahu and Ketu are the keys to understanding the three divisions of time in this world as well as the eternality in the next.
What is the connection between Rahu and Ketu now when they floating opposite one another in the space? Though separated, they remain connected by their experience with Lord Vishu’s Sudarshan Chakra. The head and the body stay as Moon’s invisible nodes in the sky. The Moon represents the mind, while Rahu and Ketu are the invisible dark shadows responsible for eclipsing the intelligence. Together they keep the mind estranged from eternal time, dwelling always on the past or the future. The bliss of the present moment remains elusive to the conditioned soul. The current moment, beautiful as Sudarshan chakra, speeds by like a bolt of lighting.
It is very rare to witness this Sudarshan Chakra, whose name means “hard to see.” Who can define the cycles of time represented by the divine weapon? How many spikes does he have; what is his form; how is he decorated; what is his metal or composition? These questions are impossible to answer except for souls who know the truth. Time keeps moving like the spinning of Sudarshan and those who recognize the present can gaze at the chakra remaining motionless.
Another meaning of Sudarshan is that which is most beautiful to see. If we could follow Sudarshan, if we become faster and catch the present moment by becoming faster than the division of time, we will see Lord Vishnu or Krshna. Sudarshan Chakra always returns to Vishnu. He belongs to the Lord. In the intimate pastimes of Shri Krshna’s Sudarshan becomes the gopi named Sudevi, who leads us to Shri Shri Radha and Shri Krishna.
HOW TO JUDGE ECLIPSES
First let me express my debt of gratitude to Pandit Trilok Chaturvedi, Ph.D., Jyotish Bhushan, of Varanasi for sharing with me much of the information contained in this article.
Eclipses in uttarayana (when the Sun is moving towards the north) affect the upper classes while eclipses occurring in dakshinayana (when the Sun moves to the South) affect the lower classes of mankind. The eclipse on December 21st 2010 and lunar eclipse of January 4th 2011 occur while the Sun is in dakshinayana, an ill portent for the general populace. Eclipse visibility is also a significant predictive factor. If the event is visible in all four directions, the four classes, namely working class, business class, military personnel and intellectuals all suffer. The brahmanas (intellectuals) are ruled by the northern directions, the kshatriyas (military personnel) by the eastern direction, vaishyas (business class) by the western direction and the shudras (working class) by the southern direction. Northeast is assigned to the mlecchas or outcastes; northwest is assigned to the army; southwest to engineers and northwest to skilled workers like artists. Directions are also assigned to non-human elements. North goes to the cattle; east to food and wildlife; west to seeds and farms and the work associated with them; south goes to the aquatic creatures and marine activities and big animals like the elephants.
Directions are ruled by the elements of the zodiac signs as well. East is assigned to the fire signs; north to the water signs; west to the air signs and south to the earth signs. The houses in a horoscope also rule different directions. East rules houses from 1st to 3rd; north rules houses 4th to 6th; west rules houses from 7th to 9th and south rules houses from 10th to 12th.
JUPITER_SATURN FACE OFF
On 15th Nov. 2011, when malefic Saturn enters Libra--his sign of exaltation--he comes face to face with benefic Jupiter in war-like Aries at the opposite end of the axis. Herein we examine the possible effects on us and the world with an eye to past encounters of Saturn and Jupiter.
When Saturn enters Libra, his sign of exaltation, on the 15th of November this year, he will find himself facing off with Jupiter. By now Jupiter is already positioned on the other end of the axis from Libra in the sign of Aries. Jupiter has been patiently waiting in the sign of the warrior Aries since 9 May. Undoubtedly, this forthcoming opposition of Saturn and Jupiter is a heavy omen for times ahead, whether in the near or relatively distant future.
These two planets are the titans of the zodiac. The slow Shanideva is the planet of the masses, of karma and of generations. His decision is firm and his verdict is far-reaching. Soon he glanced over to Brihaspati, the chief priest of the devatas and the greater benefic of the zodiac. What was the outcome out of the mix of this coming cosmic showdown? For the answer to that question this article will explore in detail times past when this infrequent combination has taken place. We will examine how a Jupiter-Saturn face-off has played an important role in the world scene over the last century. We will also look at the innate traits and characteristics of both these great demi-gods. In this way we give our due reflection upon times that are yet to come culminating in a mini Satya Yuga to become more apparent around 2040.
Many times throughout history Saturn and Jupiter have moved into opposition when their combined strength has acted as an omen that has dramatically shifted the course of world events. When the major benefic and the chief malefic form a planetary handshake across the zodiac it is a sure sign that significant changes are upon the horizon. For ready reference, a 120-year “Table of Saturn-Jupiter Conjunctions and Oppositions” appears at the end of this article.
To understand the personalities and propensities of these two giants, the reader may study the nature of two nakshatras ruled by both Shanideva and Brihaspati. This pair is inextricably linked near the very end of the zodiac, in Aquarius and Pisces. These nakshatras are Purva Bhadra ruled by Saturn and Uttara Bhadra ruled by Jupiter. Called “the scorching pair,” they are symbolized by a “death cot” with each nakshatra owning two legs at each end of the bed. They are the 25th and 26th nakshatras respectively and from them the student may understand the combined Saturn-Jupiter energy. Uttarabhadra is represented by Lord Ananta at the bottom of the Universe and Purvabhadra is represented by Lord Shiva who emanates from the forehead of Ananta.
Ruled by Jupiter, Purva Bhadra mostly lies in the sign of Saturn-ruled Aquarius. Uttara Bhadra is exactly the opposite. Positioned entirely in the sign of Pisces, which is ruled by Jupiter, Uttara Bhadra is ruled by Saturn. These two heavy nakshatras are also famous for their detachment. They deal more with affairs that pertain to death and the afterlife than with worldly matters. From studying their combined influences we can draw some clues from the past about coming events. Today changes in consciousness are leading to higher understandings of the Absolute Truth or Krishna consciousness as the flood of sankirtan prepares to engulf the planet.
The world celebrated the beginning of the 20th Century on 1 Jan 1901. Ominously, the new century began with a conjunction of Saturn and Jupiter in the sign of Sagittarius the archer. The shared energies of the titans were then combined through conjunction rather than through opposition. And in this case, their conjunction was not as inauspicious as the coming face-off in Nov. 2011 since Jupiter-ruled Sagittarius is also a philosophical sign. However, Sagittarius as the wielder of the bow is also a warring sign. The 1901 Saturn-Jupiter duo therefore foreshadowed new and idealistic changes in the years ahead, though changes would be wrought through bloodshed.
With this conjunction of Shani and Jupiter in the sign of the Centaur, the horsemen of wide-scale war would soon gallop onto the world scene. The dawn of the 20th century started with many battles, especially in Europe. America had just emerged victoriously from the Spanish-American War and the stage had just been set for Uncle Sam to emerge as a world power. Queen Victoria’s death in January marked the end of the longest monarchial reign in British era and the end of the “Victorian Era.” The Sultan of Turkey posted 50,000 troops to Bulgaria to quell unrest against the Ottoman Empire in Macedonia. The Boxer Rebellion was raging in China. Heavenly omens had been scribed and soon the gathering clouds would lead to the winds of the First World War. In 1903 Jupiter and Saturn were conjunct again, this time in the movable, earthy sign of Saturn, Capricorn.
In 1910 the faster moving Jupiter moved into an historical opposition with Saturn. Jupiter was now positioned in Mercury-ruled Virgo, while Saturn was positioned in the sign of Jupiter, Pisces. Along with the appearance of Halley’s Comet, which appeared in May of 2010, this opposition foretold the drawing together of forces in preparation for the First World War (1914-1918). Historians debate whether the ensuing WW II and the others that followed that up till today are but mere continuations of WW I. That these many wars are not actually separate conflicts but are in truth the ongoing aggressions of the same powers receives heavenly affirmations from the titans in the sky.
As foretold by the Saturn-Jupiter opposition of 1910, massive offensives would be organized both on water (Pisces) as well as on earth (Virgo) on a scale never before witnessed. Now for the first time, airplanes would soon drop bombs on whole armies causing unprecedented numbers of infantry deaths.
In 1911 Jupiter aspected Saturn from Libra while debilitated Saturn returned the glance from Aries. Debilitated Saturn in the Mars-ruled sign of conflict Aries is particularly significant in the case of ruthless wars. Then in 1914 just prior to the advent of WW I, Jupiter was debilitated in Capricorn and aspecting Saturn, the ruler of Capricorn. In turn, Saturn was positioned in the sign of Taurus, another earth sign. The war “ended” in 1918 with Jupiter moving into the stable sign of Taurus, the same position where Saturn had been at the beginning of the war.