As an astrologer I constantly come across young clients who have one important question weighing on their minds “When will I marry?”. I love doing these readings because I get to see the hope and budding love, the shine in their eyes as they dream of a future filled with happiness. Something about the innocence of young love, brings me so much joy. Sometimes there is already a “significant other” and the question is “are we compatible?”. Relationship compatibility is a very important pillar of Jyotisha. Once again, its not magic or a romanticized “made in heaven” deal. In my practice, and self-study (Swadhyaya) of Vedic Astrology, I’ve always tried to delve to the roots to understand why the compatibility rules were created by our sages. And almost always there is a deep psychological foundation to each rule of compatibility. This is the reason why I firmly believe there is never a “these two people should never marry” response. The compatibility level may be high or low based on the personality traits of the two people. I believe as an astrologer its my duty to educate my client as to what are the challenges in this relationship. And like I always say, knowledge is half the battle won. Knowing the issue exists, takes you one step closer to resolving it. And hence starts the process of evolution as we try to “fix” the compatibility issues to be with the one we love (which is a great motivation factor). This is a proactive and educated, enlightened approach to relationship issues.
Jyotisha in an arranged marriage :
Astrology has been used for ages as an important tool for match-making in societies like India where “arranged marriages” are prevalent. By doing so, the parents match the horoscopes to find the one with maximum compatibility. All this means is finding the person who is closest in personality so that the problems are less in married life. Does this mean India is the land of happy marriages? Absolutely not. There still are unhappy and unfulfilled relationships. It’s not their fault. It’s just the way society is designed. First the parents match horoscopes to put together two individuals who wont have major compatibility issues (meaning they don’t go for each other’s throats right away). And then after marriage when the two people start questioning the relationship, the unhappy parents may give in to stress, health problems etc. Rarely do they sit back and think what’s wrong here and how do I fix it? They live in denial not ever suspecting there is anything wrong in their lives. In reality, I don’t think there is anything wrong in the relationship itself, but the “unhappiness” arises from the fact that the individuals involved haven’t learnt to “love themselves”. When you don’t love yourself, you automatically start looking outside for love. And that is where the equations starts going sour. Solution – look towards the first house of self ! Center yourself, find yourself, be happy in yourself. When you do this, automatically everything else falls in place. All issues in your life vanish since now you are no longer focusing on the opposite person for happiness. You are with them because you love them unconditionally. Your happiness is being derived from within you.
Jyotisha in a “love” marriage :
So that was arranged marriages. Then what happens in the case of folks who “fall in love” and find their soul-mate. It’s interesting that the word “soul” also means psyche. In the psychology of Dr. Carl G. Jung, he explains this phenomenon of projecting our Anima and Animus (the contrasexual soul images in our unconscious) onto each other. The psyche seeks wholeness, and a union of our inner opposites is what Jung called the process of falling in love. When projection occurs, this process has begun as these images are now out in the open. We will learn a lot about ourselves by the people we either extremely love or hate. So when we feel attracted to somebody its always the polar opposite to our personality. The “attraction” is the psyche fulfilling a psychological desire to make itself “whole”. The traits we miss in ourselves, is what we look for in the other person. This is the first house and seventh house in Jyotisha. Directly opposite houses , mirror images. Hence “falling in love” happens. Once marriage happens, obviously the “newness” and “excitement” fades away after a while and the exact thing that attracted you to the person will start annoying you to no end. This is what we call “reality hit”. When relationships reach this stage, many people addicted to the excitement start looking outside their primary marriage or partnership. Many relationships end and the alchemical process begins all over again with someone else. Some go on to marry the person with whom they feel they are “in love with,” and later become disillusioned when they realize that they have married a person who is not who they thought they were. Its the cycle of life. After many such broken relationships and picking pieces up , rebuilding, etc the soul realizes there is only one place to find true happiness .. The first house of self ! We reach the same conclusion as the earlier example of arranged marriages. The key is to find happiness within and when you love somebody , love them unconditionally… Not with a need to complete yourself.
In Vedic astrology the first house rules the “self” and the seventh house (which is opposite to the first house) rules “one-one relationships” or contracts between two people. For 95% people one-one contract is a marriage contract. And hence the seventh house takes on anything to do with marriages and spouse. When an astrologer analyzes a chart, they can easily foretell if the individual will face problems in married life. Typically there will be seventh house planets (signifying energies in that area of life which need to be resolved) or the ruler of the seventh house could be placed with a malefic or in a malefic house or could have malefic aspects. These are just a few of the indicators. Most astrologers will predict ” difficulties in marriage” and leave it at that. I believe this should be taken a step forward. The idea that there is a “difficulty” itself is incorrect. All that activity in the seventh house just means the soul has that area of life to learn and understand in this lifetime. This is why circumstances come around in the lifetime which trigger that soft spot hence causing heartache. However it should be remembered that these problems will lead the person to understand what is missing and resolve it. This is called soul-growth. For example, say Person XYZ has Mars in the seventh house. All this means is that this person is exceptionally passionate when it comes to relationships. The presence of a fiery planet like Mars there causes instability in the feelings. When this person does not see a similar level of passion from his/her spouse, this leads to anger, violence and lashing out. The spouse on the other hand views this person as having “anger issues”. Parents and friends are quick to jump in and suggest therapy. The problem is compounded if the spouse has moon related aspects to the seventh house. Now our person XYZ will view the spouse as emotional/needy/clingy. Things go into a downward spiral until one day the relationship breaks down. Person XYZ had an important learning – when issues arise and that Mars gets activated (which it will), learn to bypass it or resolve it by self-analysis. The spouse on the other hand has to learn to not give in to the emotional moon at the first sight of an issue. These are band-aids to handle the seventh house planets. However the biggest lesson for both people is to ground themselves in their first house of self and learn self-love.
Whatever sign is on the descendant or 7th-house cusp, whatever planets reside therein are a detailed picture of what we lack in ourselves and will learn in this lifetime with or without our intention or consent. So we might as well take a proactive approach and learn about this part of us to experience the more productive aspects of that particular energy.
Among my clients I see people with Mars (planet of action, directness) in the 7th or ruler of the 7th telling me how violent their ex-husbands were, how they have constantly attracted aggressive partners. Folks with the Moon there tell me how needy and emotional and needy their partners are. Uranus – unpredictable, detached and aloof. Saturn – cold, disciplined, distant and critical. Jupiter – extravagant, inflated, self-indulgent. Very high level and simple descriptions, could be a lot more based on aspects form other planets or Dasha sequence etc. But a good astrologer, can look at your 7th house, or the aspects to your Venus and the ruler, and will be able to gently guide you to what your own needs are in relationships, which can be different from everyone else’s. Always remembering we are all unique and shedding all judgement aside. You may throw aside all socially accepted constructs of marriage, children, house etc and instead just decide to travel the world with your partner living as minimalists in one of those tiny houses. This is totally fine, and it just means the other stuff is not something your soul needs to learn in this lifetime.
So embrace yourself and look at every problem as an opportunity to attain soul-growth and improve yourself. As Carl Jung said –
“Knowing your own darkness is the best method for dealing with the darkness of other people”.