[Advaita-l] HOROSCOPE Matching in Hindu Marriages

Anand Hudli anandhudli at hotmail.com
Mon Oct 24 02:00:24 CDT 2016

There is no doubt people were knowledgeable about Jyotisha even in ancient
times, since we have example shlokas in the epics as evidence. Dasharatha,
out of concern regarding evil planetary effects on himself, expresses thus
to Ramachandra, with an intention of installing Him as the crown prince:
avaShTabdhaM ca me rAma nakShatraM dAruNagrahaiH| Avedayanti daivajnAH
sUryAngArakarAhubhiH|| (ayodhyAkANDa 4.18). "O Rama! Those well versed in
Jyotisha tell me that my nakShatra is influenced by the malefic planets,
Surya, AngAraka (Mars), and Rahu." There are similar references elsewhere
in the rAmAyaNa, and mahabhArata as well. This makes it clear that people
believed in planetary influences on everyday life. However, it is also
clear that the same importance to horoscope matching was not given as it is
today, in the sense a "failed" match in horoscopes becomes a deal
breaker. The reasons could be two fold. First, it was not always feasible
to examine horoscopes and make a decision about whether the marriage could
happen or not. For example, when Krishna accepted the 16,000 imprisoned
princesses as His wives, it was not a conditional acceptance, depending
whether the horoscopes of the princesses matched with His own or not.
During svayamvaras of princesses too, there was apparently no extra
condition attached that the horoscope of the winner or the chosen
man matched that of the princess. Further, Manu and other smRti authors do
not impose conditions of horoscope matching when a Dvija, after completion
of his education, chooses to get married and begin the life of a gRhastha.

In marriages of the Gandharva and Rakshasa variety, horoscope matching was
perhaps irrelevant. However, in brAhma and other type of marriages approved
for brAhmaNas, it is reasonable to believe that the horoscopes of the bride
and bridegroom were at least examined for any malefic infuences. However, I
think people also believed in remedial measures, such as shAnti homas, to
counter such influences. This is a better option than not going ahead with
the marriage alliance just because of a lack of horoscope match.


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