Horoscope of Sri Chaitanya Mahaprabhu
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© 2004 - Hansadutta das
[Posted 5 March 2006]

Sri Chaitanya Mahaprabhu: His Glorious Appearance (Part  I)

Patita Pavana das

This article was originally published in the Jyotish magazine Vidya in the year 1979.

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Before the divine advent of Sri Chaitanya Mahaprabhu, there were many lost souls who had abandoned the Vedic Dharma of their ancestors and who had taken to wicked practices. Sri Advaita Acharya of Shantipur, observing that everywhere the cultivation of spiritual life was on the wane, reflected, "Salvation for these fallen souls can be made possible only if the Supreme Lord Sri Krishna Himself were to appear and deliver the ambrosial message of love and devotion to God." With this in mind, Adwaita Acharya made vows and began worshiping the Lord by the process of Shalagramshila Puja using sacred Ganga-jal and Tulasi-patras as his holy offerings. With his loud and fervent pleas he begged the Supreme Personality of Godhead to appear and deliver all fallen souls everywhere.

In answer to the prayers of a pure devotee, the Lord incarnated as Sri Chaitanya Mahaprabhu. He appeared to Jagannatha Misra and Sachi Devi, a pious Brahmana family of Nabadwip Dham (still revered as a major holy spot of West Bengal). The astrological calculations regarding the Lord's horoscope given by Sri Annada Pathak in his article on Sri Chaitanya which appeared in April 1978 issue of Vidya are absolutely correct.

The Lagna agrees with the rising sign given by Sri Bhaktivinoda Thakura (who lived in Nabadwip in the late 1800's) in his book Amrita Pravaha Bhasya. Not only a great astrologer, Srila Bhaktivinoda is remembered to this day as unquestionably the foremost bhakta of Sri Chaitanya during the past century.

For the benefit of Vidya's esteemed readers, the kalachakra of Sri Chaitanya Mahaprabhu is given hereunder:

Sun: Purva-Bhadrapada
Moon: Purva-phalguni
Mars: Sravana
Merc: Uttar-Bhadrapada
Jupiter: Purvasadha
Venus: Asvini
Saturn: Jyestha
Rahu: Purva-Bhadrapada
Ketu: Uttar-phalguni

Positions of the planets by degrees (According to Raman): Sun 323°52; Moon 142°52; Mars 282°56; Mercury 342°0; Jupiter 261°40; Venus 6°7; Saturn 236°2; Rahu 328°10, Ascendant (According to Raman) 184°24; Ascendant (According to Vidya) 143°0.

A Bengali shloka from Sri Chaitanya Charitamrita, the 400-year-old authoritative biography of the Lord, confirms that both the Moon and the rising Sun were in Leo.

simha-rasi simha-lagna uchha graha gana
shad-varga asta-varga sarva sulakshana

"The Moon was rising in the sign of Leo and all the planets were in very elevated positions. Everything was auspicious about the horoscope including the shad-varga charts (navamsa, dwadasamsa, etc.) and the aste-varga calculations."

(This ancient confirmation of the Lord's lagna in Leo indicates that the Libra ascendant given by Dr. B.V. Raman in his book Notable Horoscopes is not correct.)

The Lord's Lagna in Leo is extremely powerful due to its being occupied by a full Moon and Ketu aspected by its Lord, the Sun, as well as Saturn, Jupiter, Mars and Rahu. As indicated in the above verse by the words uccha-graha-gana, all the planets were powerful. Note that exalted Mars, the lord of the houses tenanted by Saturn and Venus, adds strength to these two planets. In turn, Saturn boosts the Sun in Aquarius, which aspects the Moon and Ketu in Leo Lagna. Well-placed Jupiter in his own house causes a clear neechabhanga to Mercury in Pisces due to being in a kendra from Mercury, who is the ruler of his (Mercury's) own sign of exaltation. Thus every house has become strengthened in this powerful horoscope.

Indeed, even before the Lord had taken birth, His "father" Sri Jagannatha Misra had told Mother Sachi, "I see wonderful things; Your body is effulgent, and it appears as if Lakshmi Herself were now staying personally in my home. In a dream I saw the effulgent abode of the Lord enter my heart and transfer Himself to your heart. I can therefore understand that a great personality will soon take birth." Sachimata's father, Sri Nilambar Chakravarty, was a renowned astrologer of Nabadwip, itself a seat of learning in those days. When the learned pandit observed that his daughter had been carrying her unborn baby for an exceptionally long period, he predicted that after 13 full months of pregnancy the Lord would appear when all the planets had arranged themselves in the most auspicious positions.

When the time for His [the Lord's] appearance finally arrived, the Moon was being eclipsed by Rahu. Sri Annada Pathak has stated that Mahaprabhu's appearance actually took place after the Moon had regained its lustre, having already been devoured and "cleansed" by Rahu. He goes on to say that such a birth can only be auspicious, although birth during the actual eclipse is usually considered ominous. This is certainly feasible, for the Lord's birth is all-auspicious (sarva sulakshana), but the Chaitanya Charitamrita gives yet another reason, as follows:

a-kalanka gaurachandra dila darashana
sa-kalanka chandre ara kon prayojana

"When the spotless golden Moon of Sri Chaitanya Mahaprabhu became visible, what would be the need for a Moon full of contaminated spots on its body?" (Chaitanya Charitamrita Adi-lila 13.91)

The purport to the above poetic verse is, of course, that Sri Chaitanya, who is Gaurachandra, the Golden moon, was of such perfect and unequalled effulgent beauty that Chandra, the Moon we are used to seeing, hid his spotted face out of shame when the spotless Moon of the Lord appeared.

Still another reason has been given by His Divine Grace A.C. Bhaktivedanta Swami Prabhupada, whose 17-volume English rendering of has now become an international classic. He wrote in 1962:

"By the will of the Lord there was a lunar eclipse that morning (during Sri Chaitanya's birth). It is the custom of the Hindu public to bathe in the Ganges or any other sacred river during the hours of eclipse and chant Vedic mantras for purification. When Lord Chaitanya was born during the lunar eclipse, the whole of India was roaring with the holy sound of HARE KRISHNA HARE KRISHNA KRISHNA KRISHNA HARE HARE/ HARE RAMA HARE RAMA RAMA RAMA HARE HARE. These sixteen names of the Lord are mentioned in many Puranas and Upanishads. They are described as the tarak brahman name for this age. It is recommended in the shastras that offenseless chanting of these holy names of the Lord can deliver a fallen soul from material bondage. There are innumerable names of the Lord both in India and outside and all of them are equally good because all of them indicate the Supreme Personality of Godhead. But because this sixteen-word mantra is especially recommended for this age, it is best that everyone take advantage of this path of chanting as recommended by the great acharyas and shastras.

"The coincidence of the Lord's appearance during the lunar eclipse makes clear the purpose of His mission. He advented Himself specifically to preach the importance of chanting the holy names of the Lord in Kali Yuga, or Age of Quarrel. And to confirm the Lord's mission all the people of the world will accept the Lord's holy name as the common platform for the universal dharma of mankind. In other words, the advent of the holy name took place along with the advent of Lord Chaitanya Mahaprabhu."

Sri Advaita Acharya's wife Sita took permission from her husband and came to see the divine baby with valuable gifts and presentations, including all kinds of ornaments, bangles, a tiger's claw set in gold, and silken cloth. She worshiped the golden-hued boy with auspicious articles, including fresh grass, paddy, gorochana, turmeric, kunkuma and sandalwood. She gave Him the name Nimai out of compassion for Mother Sachi, who had previously lost eight daughters to the god of death. She prayed that due to the bitter antiseptic quality of the nim tree growing nearby all harmful ghosts and witches (dakinis and sankhinis) would be frightened away from Him. (Much later during His youth our Lord came to be known as Nimai Pandit.)

After several months, Nilambar Chakravarti was shown the numerous auspicious marks on his grandson's body. He then informed Sachimata and Jagannatha Misra:

"There are 32 marks that symptomise a great personality, and I see all those marks on the body of your child. This body has all the symptoms of Lord Narayana on His palms and soles. He will be able to deliver all the inhabitants of the three planetary systems. In the future this child will protect and maintain the entire world. For this reason He is to be called Vishwambhar."

As noticed by the venerable Pandit Nilambar when he scrutinized the child's horoscope and auspicious bodily markings, the influence of Sri Chaitanya Mahaprabhu would spread far and wide. Indeed, His completely spiritual sankirtan movement continues to pick up momentum with each passing day.

In recent times this modern phenomenon of world-wide acceptance of Lord Chaitanya's teachings has primarily been due to the preaching and single-minded efforts of His Divine Grace A.C. Bhaktivedanta Swami Prabhupada, Founder-Acharya of the International Society for Krishna Consciousness. To the knowers of jyotish shastra, the formation of an all-world Society dedicatd to the mission of Sri Chaitanya Mahaprabhu is not surprising because it was clearly predicted by Mahaprabhu's pandit grandfather at the time of the Lord's birth as indicated in His horoscope.

Go to Part II

Sri Chaitanya Mahaprabhu: His Glorious Appearance (Part I)/ WORLD SANKIRTAN PARTY
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