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The Biggest Differences Between Vedic & Modern Western Astrology

Updated: 2 days ago


There’s some confusion between Vedic astrology and modern Western Astrology. I studied Western astrology for a year beginning in 2018 and then I started learning Vedic astrology as I was learning Ernst Wilhelm Cards of Truth system a year later.  

 

I believe a person should learn the system that they resonate with the most and I don’t think one is better than the other. In general, I've found that Vedic astrology is more profound when it comes to its methods and information than Western astrology but they're both beneficial when it comes to learning about our life path and mental and emotional well-being. 


Keep in mind that I don't use the sidereal system that many Vedic astrologers use. I work with the Tropical system like Western astrologers, but unlike many Western astrologers, I apply the whole sign and whole house system to my readings. The main difference between the two is that tropical astrology is based on the seasons and zero degrees of Aries coincides with the vernal equinox point in the Northern Hemisphere.  Sidereal considers the Earth’s axial precession is based on the positions of the stars in the sky. The sidereal system is common in India and is about 23 degrees (out of 30 degrees) behind the tropical system. In other words, if your Sun sign is Cancer in the Tropical system, there’s a high likelihood that your Sun will be Gemini in the sidereal system. In other words, if you know your signs in the Western system, it’ll be the same in the Tropical Vedic astrology system as well. I mainly use Vedic astrology methods based on ancient Indian texts from such as Brihat Parashara Hora Shastra and Jaimini.


I would like to preface that the world of Vedic astrology is massive and it takes more than one lifetime to fully grasp its profound techniques. In this blog post, I’m by no means doing a justice to its magnificent revelations.


The chart below is not an exhaustive list of the differences between modern Western astrology and Vedic astrology, but it delineates some of the biggest differences that I’ve found.

Modern Western Astrology

Vedic Astrology

Modern Western astrology has its roots in Ancient Mesopotania. Later, the Greeks and Romans who further developed the system through their cultural lenses. Today, we use the names of the Roman deities in astrology. Even though Greeks have equivalent names, the names that we currently use of the planets originate from the Roman Gods– Mars, Mercury, Jupiter, Venus, and Saturn. Modern astrology is ultimately a culmination of many ancient cultures and belief system. 

Vedic astrology originates from India, which has its roots in the Vedas which are ancient sacred Hindu texts. The Rigveda is one of the oldest texts that has an astrological foundation and is believed to have been composed between 1500-1200 BCE. Along with the well-known twelve signs: Aries, Taurus, Gemini, and so on, there are 27 nakshatras, which are based on the lunar constellations.

The genders of the planets are often associated with the characteristics of the planets.The Sun and Mars are masculine, while the Moon and Venus are feminine. Mercury, Jupiter, and Saturn are neuter planets.



All of the planets are considered male but exude either masculine or feminine energies.


The Sun, Mars, and Jupiter are masculine planets, while the Moon, Venus and Rahu are feminine planets. Mercury, Saturn, and Ketu are neuter planets.


The general differences between masculine and feminine planets is that masculine planets are the doers, they’re active, result-driven, while feminine planets are receptive, nourishing, and strive to get their needs met.

Each sign has a planetary ruler. Aries is ruled by Mars, Taurus is ruled by Venus, and so on. In modern Western astrology, planetary rulers often include outer planets. But I’ve seen that many Western astrologers often acknowledge the “traditional” rulership as well, which doesn’t include the outer planets. 


In modern Western astrology, Scorpio is often ruled by Pluto instead of Mars, Aquarius is governed by Uranus instead of Saturn, and Pisces is ruled by Neptune instead of Jupiter. 

Vedic astrology utilizes “traditional” rulership in which only the visible planets rule a sign, while Uranus, Neptune, and Pluto don’t.


  • The Sun rules Leo

  • The Moon rules Cancer

  • Mars rules Aries and Scorpio

  • Mercury rules Gemini and Virgo

  • Jupiter rules Sagittarius and Pisces

  • Venus rules Taurus and Libra

  • Saturn rules Capricorn and Aquarius


Planetary rulership is essential for understanding the signs. If we know the planetary rulers, we can better understand the significance of each sign because the planets inform the meaning behind the signs. 


There are many techniques that involve planetary rulers. For example, if the ruler of the ascendant is Mars, we can examine a person’s path or physical well-being (1st house indications) based on the condition of Mars in their chart. 

Aspects are used to identify planetary interactions and how their energies influence our personalities and life events. Planets can be aspected by a conjunction, trine, opposition, square, sextile, and so on. This is indicated by how many degrees apart the planets are from each other. The results of aspecting planets are often based on if a planet is benefic or malefic and the type of aspect. 

Oftentimes, even in a planet is in a different sign, they can be considered conjunct if they’re within a certain amount of degrees from one another.

Aspects in Vedic astrology are more complex. While Vedic astrology also uses trines, oppositions, conjunctions and angles, each planet has a certain strength in which it influences another planet based on an aspect using mathematical calculations known as Virupa. The highest Virupa is 60 points and the lowest is 0 points. Two or more planets in the same sign have the highest strength at 60 points, even if they’re 29 degrees apart. In Vedic astrology, a conjunction is when two or more planets are in the same sign. It doesn’t matter how close they are in degrees.


Further, lajjitaadi avasthas, which is from Brihat Parashara Hora Shastra, is an intricate way of interpreting the fulfillment strength of planetary interactions which can result in a planet being delighted, proud, agitated, ashamed, thirsty or starved. Based on these possible conditions of a planet, which can be a combination of these conditions at times, can inform us of how a planet is fulfilling his natural goals. The lajjitaadi avasthas show an individual’s habits, behavior, success and failures, psychological complexes and more. 


Each planet has relationships to other planets that are either amicable, inimical, or neutral. It doesn’t matter if a planet is benefic or malefic and aspecting another. What matters is if they’re friends in Vedic astrology. For example, the Moon and Venus are often both seen as benefic but the Moon is not Venus’ friend and starves him. 


This is a complex system that requires lots of explaining, so I plan to discuss this further in a future vlog. 


To learn more about the lajjitaadi avasthas in your chart, you can always request a reading with me at www.hercosmiccrown.com/book-a-reading

The natal chart is a cosmic map of the planets at the exact moment you were born which includes the positions of the Sun, the Moon, Mars, Mercury, Jupiter, Venus, Saturn, Uranus, Neptune, Pluto, Rahu, and Ketu.


Western astrology uses harmonics, which divides the natal chart in many parts. Vedic astrology also has this but it seems to be more known that there are several charts in Vedic astrology.

Along with our natal chart, which is known as the rasi in Vedic astrology, there are other charts that zoom in on the houses in our natal chart. They provide more specific details of certain areas in our lives. For example, the navamsa chart (D-9) is the marriage chart, which is the 9th house magnified and it has to do with our beliefs regarding our path. Not everyone’s fate is to get married so this can include a person’s ashram path, or path of being single. 


Another example is the saptamsa (D-7) chart, which has to do with creating children and that requires a partner. This is our 7th house magnified.


Photo of Gina from Her Cosmic Crown
Gina from www.hercosmiccrown.com

Greetings! I'm Gina, a California native who has voraciously studied astrology since 2018. I use Tropical Vedic Astrology and cartomancy as my main vehicles in my cosmic quest for profound spiritual understanding and healing. 


I hold a B.A. in Psychology and an M.S. in Marriage & Family Therapy. With over fifteen years of counseling and teaching experience, I've always enjoyed listening to people's stories and helping them on their path.


The content on this page is to be treated as entertainment purposes only and should never replace professional advice. Her Cosmic Crown uses astrology and the cards as a tool to help with guidance providing advice during readings. We will not be responsible for the decisions you make after a reading.

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