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KASHMIR (Updated)
Today, 5 August 2019 has become a historic day in our history as something which could not be done in 70 years has taken shape now. Union Home minister Amit Shah has announced that Article 370 which grants special status to the state of Jammu and Kashmir will be scrapped. He also announced that Jammu and Kashmir will no longer be a state and it will be bifurcated into two Union Territories— Jammu & Kashmir and Ladakh.  read more...read more...
ONE MORE SCANDAL
But the case of Chidambaram occupied the nation’s attention. Along with Chidambaram is the case of his son Karti Chidambaram. Coming back to the case of Chidambaram, many people remember that during his tenure as Home Minister of India in 2010 he was said to have floated the word ‘Saffron Terrorism’. The image of Chidambaram that got projected was that of a sycophant of a powerful lady in Congress party. The horoscope of Chidambaram available to us is not confirmed as yet. This horoscope explains certain events of his life very well and the present turn of events leading to his fall from grace and the enormous danger that he is facing of legal punishment. read more...read more...
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THE WAY OF THE STARS

K.N Rao understands the meaning and purpose of life through astrology, thus reinstating the honour, recognition and dignity of this science. His decision never to become a professional astrologer was inspired by the traditional definition of astrology as Vedanga—a source and guide of wisdom and understanding. One of the most reputed astrologers of the modern world, he is considered the architect of the astrological renaissance of the 1990s. 


K.N.Rao is the son of the famous pre-Independence journalist K.Rama Rao who founded the reputed newspaper, the National Herald. He was initiated into astrology at the young age of twelve by his mother whom he regarded as the best astrologer in the areas of marriage and children. After a short stint as an English lecturer, he joined the government service in 1957, retiring as director general of audit and accounts in 1990. Throughout his lifelong tenure with the government, he continued his research in astrology, collecting over 50,000 horoscopes—possibly the largest collection in the world. But it was only in 1981, when he was forced to speak at a seminar in Delhi, that the world was first exposed to his groundbreaking ideas and research. In the 1990s he was invited by the US to speak at the conference of the American Council of Vedic Astrology. 


As the founder member of the world’s largest school of astrology at the Bharatiya Vidhya Bhavan, New Delhi, he has inspired thousands of students and faculty members to bring an academic and research-based approach to the study of this ancient science. His classical and innovative methods, like the mnemonic memory tablet PAC-DARES and the composite approach, are used by aspiring astrologer and students in India and the world. 


A rational and scientific astrologer, he believes firmly in research that yields proven results. K.N. Rao is also a prolific writer who has published over thirty-eight boks on astrology that have been translated into languages like Japanese and Russian. On his first visit to the US, and American delegate aptly summed up the impact of his ideas and work: ‘Vedic Astrology before Rao an after Rao.’ 


For you astrology has been a sadhana and not just a predictive science. How do you use astrology as a sadhana? Astrology originated in the ashrams of the rishis, and traditionally eighteen rishis are said to be the founders of the system we follow. So, astrology became a part of the curriculum in gurukuls where shishyas went to do their sadhana. Astrology is known as apara vidya, which means it is not a spiritual subject or para vidya. It acts as a bridge between para and apara. 


What is the meaning of Para and Apara vidya? 


Apara vidya includes subjects like economics and politics that are studied in the universities, while the holy texts like the Upanishads, the Gita, etc., studied for spiritual knowledge, are para vidya. Astrology is a bridge. If you take the apara route, you become like any other astrologer who makes predictions. If you take the para route, it becomes a part of your spiritual sadhana. 


In what ways do you use aspects of astrology in your personal spiritual growth? 


It is very well expalined in a couplet of Kabridas, ‘Ramjharokee baithke, jag ka mujra dekh’, this means, ‘while sitting in the window of God’s word, observe the dance of the world where people are motivated by their greed and selfishness’. When we practise astrology honestly, we seek answers to the true meaning of life. When you see that people are completely steeped in maya—worldlydesires and greed—you begin to take a detached view and ask, ‘Is there no higher purpose in life?’Once that becomes your goal, you know what to discard and what to pursue.


You have been very emphatic about the role and uses of astrology. That it is not just predictive, to find out if I can win an election, make more money or finalize a contract. It has a higher purpose—to discover the deeper meaning of life. Historically, astrology was also used as an adjunct to Ayurveda, especially in those universities that teach Ayurveda, such as the Banaras Hindu University. You have done a lot of research exploring the medical dimension. Can you tell us about it? 


The medical aspect of astrology is a very complex subject that only some doctors can understand properly. I have spoke to many doctors who have learnt astrology, but they could not provide a good astro-medical diagnosis. Using astrology, we are able to warn a person about a coming period of sickness and also predict the outcome of the disease; but it is difficult to predict the events in between, during the period of treatment and when the person is in depression. In many instances I have cautioned people to be careful, not to make important plans at a certain time, because it could be a period of sickness for them. 


Historically, the astrologer was always more than someone who predicted, he was a counsellor to the community. 


I will put it in sequence of importance. Astrology is guidance, it is used as a preventive, as counselling, and it has a remedial aspect. These days the remedial aspect is overemphasized as there is a lot of money that can be made from it. So, when astrologers become mercenaries, they want to make more and more through its remedial aspects. There are more aparacharyas than jyotiracharyas in society now. 


You personally don't charge anything or make any money from the practice of astrology. You teach at the Bharatiya Vidya Bhavan, a very prestigious institution recognized as the largest astrological school in the world. None of the teachers get paid. Obviously the motivation of the astrologer is extremely important? 


In the Gita, Lord Krishna describes the categories of a bhakta: arta, artharthi, jigyasu and gyani, and says that every subject should be studied as an art. 


Those in the arta category want to make money out of it—and this is a very large cateogry today. Jigyasu had predicted something like this about Delhi many years ago. Some people join the classes only to learn how to make various predictions—this is jigyasu, the curiosity of a scientist. Gyani is part of my spiritual sadhana. So those who are born to astrology have to belong to one of these categories arta, artharthi, jigyasu, gyani. 


You have been working for the scientific empirical validation of astrology. At a personal level you are known to have a collection of more than 50,000 horoscopes—the largest single collection. There is a concern that astrology hasn't been exposed to the rigour of sientific analysis. 


First of all, when you decide to keep any knowledge secret you cannot subject it to rigorous scientific discipline. 


Is that desirable? 


It is not desirable. I have done it openly when I proved that childbirth, for example, cannot take place unless Saturn, Jupiter, Mars and the moon help to make it happen. Planets and children have been tested through thousands and thousands of horoscopes in India, the US and Russia. By giving it a statistical empirical base, testing it and showing a percentage of resistance, we are able to establish the scientific validity of the subject, and I am a pioneer in this area. 


As a practitioner you have done this with the motivation of helping other people, but wouldn't it help the cause if astrology were researched independently as a subject of study and investigation by those without an obvious stake in the results, like any other science is? 

It is happening slowly. The first step was to break the tradition of too much secrecy, which was a major drawback. Now we are involved in research and our students are doing brilliant work; empirically, statistically, it is bound to follow. After tne to twelve years no one will question it. 


So what application does this kind of research have in terms of public good? 


These days I am concentrating mainly on education. I have been openly saying that a hundred educational psycologists cannot assess a child's educational aptitude in one month, compared to an astrologer who can assess it within ten mintues of looking at the child's horoscope. We will never go wrong, Eighty per cent o fthe time we will be 100 per cent sure, while 20 per ent of the time there may be a little confusion because new subjects are constantly being introduced in the curricula. 


But is it necessary to be an astrologer to be able to provide this kind of guidance? Is it possible to evolve a model, a computerized checklist, that can be widely used by any layperson? 


No, you have to be an astrologer and you have to have the courage to modernize the concepts. For example, if I apply 500 or 1000 year old principles, I will look at the horoscope and say you are studying Vedanta or Nyaya. But since these subjects are outdated now, the same reasons that made you study Vedanta 400 years ago are now urging you into an MBA, those that made yous tudy Nyaya are prompting yout to study journalism, mass media, etc. Only an educated man can consider all the variations necessary in the modern context. I have the advantage of teaching highly educated people who are not like the pundits of the past. 


You were in the Supreme COurt two years ago and, in a sense, led to lone battle for astrology to be introduce in academic curricula. There was a debate on whether it should be classified as a science or a humanities subject. While I would have thought few woul argue that it is indeed a part of our heritage and needs to be studied, there was great controversy. That was a piognant victory for you, a kind of validation by the establishment of your position. Now astrology is being taught in institutions and the Supreme Sourt has endorsed your views. You had two strands to your argument. Tell us about them. 


Under the Directive Principles of State Policy, astrology could be defended very easily as a part of the country's composite culture. Then the scientists objected to it being called a science subject, but we could defend this view by showing the statistical, empirical research, etc. Then a political twist was introduced that astrolgoical jyotisha was saffronizing the educational system. At this point I became very angry and showed them historical evidence. Timur the Lame was named after astrological consultation. When Babar consulte a Persian astrologer before fighting Rana Sangha, he realized that Indian astrology was far superior. So, his son, Humayun, learnt astrology here, became an excellent astrologer and made two great predictions about himself; oen, that if he married Hamida Bano, she would become the mother of a world famous personality who was Akbar, second, he would win back the kingdom of India and become emperor again. Sher Shan Suri was defeated and Humayun did become the emperor. 

But the Islamic tradition was different from what the Hindus practised. 


Yes, slightly different. Hindus were very liberal in the old days. They also adopted a system of astrology from the Muslim tradition called annual horoscopy, which produces excellent results. But, though they borrowed our whole system, we borrowed only a fragment from them! 


In what ways has the evolution of astronomy and science impacted astrology? 

In ancient astrology the Surya Siddhanta calculations were excellent, definitely much better than bijesankaran used in modern astrology. After NASA [National Aeronautics and Space Administration] came up with its own observations, the Hindus with their liberal and scientific outlook accepted their calculations for prediction. 


Has that made astrology more accurate than it was in the past? 


I will not say it has made it more accurate because it has been done for centuries in anarksha karaksha. But it has made a significant difference in our calculation of certain astrological points. 


What about things like the demotion of Pluto as a planet? 


We never use Herschel [Uranus], Pluto and Neptune in Hindu astrology. So the demotion, promotion or elimination makes no difference to a Hindu astrologer. 


But if modern science were to conclude that a particular planet does not exist, such as Rahu or Ketu, do they become merely notional planets? 


Instead of calling it a notional or actual planets, let us first understand what most people who are attacking astrologers don't understand-that we use the word ‘graha1 and not ‘planet’. What is a graha? The graha is that symbol which shows the purva describes how Raja Dasaratha wne to Shani loka and requested Shani not to torment him. Shani answered, ‘I am a graha and my duty is to disrupt, but since you are a dharmic raja I will not torment you much.’


What is the logicl of astrology? In what ways do planets 


impact human destiny and how do they influence us? Like the moon affects the tides, do the planets affect the biochemistry of our brains? 


Astrology has two aspects; first ganita and then phalita. Phalita is predictive astrology, divided into samhita, which includes general predictions about he weather, nations, war, etc. and hora, the astrology of the inividual. Many things happen in life that only astrology can explain. Lord Krishna explains this in the Gita that though we make all kinds of plans, we have to be aware that along with the fied elements that affect our lives, there is also a fifth element— the element of uncertainty, daiva or destiny. This element is understood only through astrology, which is why one of the synonyms for astrology is daivagya. 


In the perennial debate between predestiny, karma and free will, what are the elements, where is the free will, what is destiny? 


My simple answer is to be aware of three paths; prarabhda or predestination, purushartha, that you have to keep on making efforts, and prarthna, your prayer. All three have to continue simultaneously. How does destiny play its role in all of this? This experience will help you understand it better. Nearly twenty-four years ago, I warned a man not to get too attached to his children because they would make him very unhappy. Now, his children have grown up and deprived him of all his property in his old age. The man lives alone in his house almost like a pensioner living on his childrens' charity. He asked me if he should take them to court. So I told him that even if he won his case he would not have enought time to enjoy it. 


Do you sometimes feels a sense of power, that you know so much about some people, potentially more than they might know about themselves? It can give rise to an ego! Isn't that a great risk for an astrologer? 


It is a terribly bad risk. Astrologers who have this ego are generally those who know very little of the subject. Vidya dadati vinayam, the more you understand astrology, the humbler you become. 


What is it that encourages this humility? 


Once you begin to reveal the mysteries of the planets, of the grahas, you begin to realize you are such a tiny speck in the world, in the universe. But there is this one wonderful aspect-the meaning and purpose of human life cannot be understood better in any other way than through astrology. Jyotisha is a pratyaksha shastra—it is demonstrable. When someone asks, why is this happening to me, I can explain it astrologically. You can choose to accept or not accept what I am saying, but if you know astrology you can very clearly see why things are happening the way they are. you have used the phrase the ‘meaning and purpose of life.’ 


What has astrology taught you about the meaning and purpose of life?


Yes, the meaning and purpose of human life is to serve humanity and devote time to divinity. There is nothing else. All other things come and vanish. You can very easily see maya—the fickleness of human fortune. Astrology gives you the detachment you need. While working on horoscopes you begin to understand that certain pursuits are totally useless, while others are very useful. Man must always have a higher purpose in life to rise above the pettiness of the world. Like the padma-patra—born in the world, you live like a lotus, you are born from mud but you live to rise out of it. 


Under what circumstances woul you urge people to consult an astrologer? 


These days I tell people not to visit an astrologer at all. 


Why is that?


For a very simple reason, the astrologer will turn you 
into a catalyst for making money. It has become so exploitative. Someone must fight this. There is the real risk that anyone can acquire knowledge from books, claim that he is an astrologer and exploit people’s vulnerabilities. 


That is happening. 


So is there some movement amongst astrologer to protect clients? 


That was part of the aim of the University Grants Commission's scheme to introduce astrology in the universities. So, over a period of time we get legitimate rights and have to get a licence to practise. Then, if an astrologer cheats you, you can take him to consumer court to prevent it from happening again. 


You learnt astrology from your mother when you were just twelve years old. You also had many masters, gurus, jyotisha gurus. How important is the personal, spiritual dimension now that the metaphysical transmission of knowledge is no longer happening? 


This is a beautiful quesiton. It is a secret that is not in any astrology book, it is only with the sadhus. Fortunately, I had a yogi as my astrology guru, Yogi Bhaskaranandaji. He would pick up a horoscope and clearly predict when obstacles would hinder the path of spiritual development; this is called antara or indrautpat, indra ka utpat, when some sort of temptation makes the person deviate, and the chances of them returning to the path. For example, a particular combination shows that a man will have a lot of temptation, a woman will come into his life, like the story of Vishwamitra, but finally the will overcome it. When and how it will happen, and how it will be overcome can all be seen astrologically. So, is astrology suggesting the probabilitythat a particular event will happen, or a strategy to manage it? 


I will not say probaility, but near certainty. I have seeen it happen and people have come out of it. 


Do you have a personal sadhana, practice, meditation, prayer, independent of the study of astrology? 


I have been initiated as a disciple of Swami Paramanda Saraswati of Bengal, who is no more, and I am a Krishna worshipper attached to Vrindavan. I do my sadhana and for me that is more important. 


But astrology has continued as a tradition; though I practice it, I am not dependent on it. My sadhana is more important thant anything else. 


In terms of the unfolding sadhana of your work as an astrologer, you continued with the practice of astrology when you were in the Indian Audit Service. It's been a long journey. What aspirations do you have for your journey ahead? 


If the student that we have at Bharatiya Vidhya Bhavan, with their high educational qualifications and experience, IAS and IPS officers, engineers and doctors too, continue the scientific tradition of astrology, after twenty to thirty years, astrology will be remembered all over the world as the sience of the future and the science of sciences. This is the prediction I am making. 


And what would you like Mr. K.N. Rao to be remembered as? 


Whether anyone remembers me or not does not matter at all. I am the divine instrument chosen by God, so that the divine will work through me. When I go away, someone else will come and take up this task. So why should anyone remember me?
Sincerely,
K.N.Rao.
16 Dec 2006

Respected Sir
good evening, I got 8 reply from people to whom I informed about your interview on DD News today at 9:30 PM.They told me that it was something different from what they see daily on cable TV. It was very sober and very intelegentlly taken.I personally feel that I have not seen such kind of converstation in my life at T.VChannels.
Sir,I am very delighted

Thanks
R.S.Panwar


Keywords: KN Rao, Bharatiay Vidya Bhavan, New Delhi, Journal of Astrology, Sadhana, Rahu, Ketu, Jupiter, Saturn, Yogi Bhaskranandji, Doordarshan, Horoscope, Kundli, Kabir, Krishna

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