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Rahu and Ketu

DateDecember 26, 2013

Rahu and Ketu are considered to be members of the family of nine planets, or the grahas in Vedic Astrology. But they do not represent any physical planet, and enjoy the status of ‘shadow planets’. They are the two nodes of our Moon. Rahu is the ascending node of the Moon while Ketu is the descending node of the moon.

Rahu and Ketu in Astrology are the two lunar nodes::

While orbiting our Earth, at two points the Moon intersects Earth’s elliptical path around the Sun – either aligning in between Earth and the Sun or aligning behind Earth. Calculating the time for Lunar nodes guide us in finding about occurrences of Full moon and New moon and also the Eclipses.

One such point that the Moon crosses while moving in the northerly direction is the ascending Lunar node and the point of intersection from which the Moon moves southerly direction is the descending Lunar node.

Rahuketu in Hindu Mythology is a demon::

During the time of Churning of the Ocean of Milk, otherwise known as Samudra Manthan, gods and demons were engaged in strife to secure the divine nectar of immortality. The demon Rahuketu got hold of a portion of the nectar and began to drink it. Sun and Moon noticed this and got alarmed that a demon will become immortal. Gods sent Mohini, the female avatar of Vishnu to prevent him from drinking the nectar. When Rahuketu had begun to take the nectar, Mohini cut off his head before the nectar could percolate into his body.

The severed head came to be called Rahu which remained immortal. This is why, time and again Rahu swallows the Sun creating eclipse. The body attained an individual identity called Ketu which, time and again swallows the Moon causing lunar eclipse.

Importance of Rahu and Ketu in Vedic Astrology::

  • Rahu, the North Lunar node or Ketu, the South Lunar node are always placed opposite to each other in a birth-chart because they generally serve opposite purposes and manifest different tendencies in the native. Generally, if one is good the other is bad, and if one gives the other takes away good things of life.
  • They are the indicators of our past and future karmic lives. Ketu provides the clue to our past life Karma and Rahu to the Karma that we will experience. Rahu and Ketu gives better understanding of life by trying to clear the past energies stored in subconscious mind of the native and gets a better vision of the life ahead.
  • Rahu is powerful in Aquarius and Ketu in Scorpio. Rahu is exalted in Taurus and debilitated in Scorpio. Ketu is exalted in Scorpio and debilitated in Taurus – such placement of Rahu and Ketu is very powerful.
  • In conjunction with other planets, Rahu and Ketu amplify the good energies of benefic planets. They also increase the malefic effects of planets in the same way.
  • Rahu and Ketu bring good results when placed in third, sixth and eleventh houses.
  • Rahu or Ketu in quadrant or trine placed with benefic planets creates a strong Raj yoga and if placed in a quadrant with a trine lord, or placed in trine with a quadrant lord, a yoga karaka is created in the birth chart of the native. Also placed in trine, along with Saturn, Rahu and Ketu does good to the native.
  • A well-placed Rahu or Ketu in a horoscope brings fame and success to the native whereas any ill placement of either can bring debt, misfortune and death.
  • Rahu and Ketu are such Karmic forces that it can restrict a person from enjoying any good effects of the planets. Suppose, Ketu is placed in Virgo and Rahu is placed in Capricorn, and all other planets are placed in the houses between Rahu and Ketu, it creates Kal Sarpa Yoga. This is when a person’s fate is said to be locked in the bad energies of past Karma.
  • An afflicted Rahu can make you indulge in excesses of life that leads to self- destruction and a bad Ketu can bring obstacles that will hamper your progress towards your goal.

Even after studying the characteristics of Rahu and Ketu, Astrologers have not been able to predict their behavior with accuracy. Rahu and Ketu are unpredictable to a certain extent. Since they reflect your Karmic life, it is always advisable to come in terms with your Karmic life through better awareness and develop a good connection with the Cosmic intelligence.


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