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The Truth about Nadi Astrology

Are you aware that in some places in India, people have records of your past,
present and future? You will, certainly, not believe in thinking so. But the fact is that
everything about you (or some of you) was written centuries ago on palm leaves.
The holders of these destiny leaves take your thumb impression, go through
several bundles of the leaves preserved by them, ask some questions about you and
your past to ascertain the correct leaf. Then they proceed to make predictions about
your past, present and the future. They would also ask to perform some rituals to
ward off evil aspects or doshas.
What is Nadi Astrology?
Nadi Astrology is an ancient Hindu method of delineation. Nadi derived from the
Sanskrit word nad means a channel for flow. One meaning is equivalent to nerve.
Naadi in Tamil means "in search of". In astrology, nadi refers to 1/150th division of
a zodiac sign of 30 degrees also known as nadi amsa. There are different kinds of
nadis viz., Bhrigu Nandi Nadi, Sukra Nadi, Siva Nadi, Agastiyar Nadi, Shani Nadi,
Budha Nadi, Guru Nadi, Ganesha Nadi, Kumara Nadi, Kamakshi Nadi, Jeeva Nadi,
Saptarishi Nadi etc.
The Nadi Amsas
The basic concept of Nadi Astrology is that there are 150 Ndis (and then each part
is assigned a purva and uttara bhaga for an actual total of 300 divisions) in a sign or
Rshi, one sign is 30 degrees of zodiac. Thus, each division is only 6 minutes of arc in
length! This is very minute considering that each degree of the ascendent takes an
average of 4 minutes of time. Thus 1 amsa would pass in 24 seconds (1 vighati). This
is very precise calculation. The lagna and all the planets are placed in the Nadi
Amsas and readings are given. Twelve signs of zodiac grouped into three categories:
Movable (Chara), Fixed (Sthira) and Dual (Dvisvabhva) signs. Movable signs are
Aries, Cancer, Libra and Capricorn. Fixed signs are Taurus, Leo, Scorpio and
Aquarius. The rest i.e., Gemini, Virgo, Sagittarius and Pisces are dual signs.
Nomenclature of 150 Ndis is peculiar to each of these three types of signs.
There are 1800 Ndis in 360 degrees. Numbers and names of Ndis are identical
among all four Chara signs. Among all four Sthira signs, Numbers and names of
Ndis are identical, but numbering is different from those in Chara and
Dvisvabhva signs. Similarly, numbering of Ndis in all four Dvisvabhva signs is
identical among themselves, but different from Chara or Sthira signs. For instance,
the first Ndi in Chara signs such as Aries is Vasudh Ndi, but in Sthira sings the
order is reversed and Vasudh is 150th Ndi. In Dvisvabhva signs such as Gemini,

Vasudh is 76th Ndi; that is, from the middle of 150. Thus, there are 450 distinctive
names and numbers in full zodiac. Ndi texts use this concept of Ndi as the basic
unit for prediction. Again there are two views on the extent of each nadi amsa
equal and unequal. In the equal nadi amsa system, each amsa equals 12 minutes
(arc) while in the unequal nadi amsa system, it varies from a minimum of 1.67
minutes to a maximum of 30 minutes.
According to Dr. B. V. Raman, The minute unit (that is 1/150th part of a sign) that
is exactly on the eastern horizon at the time of birth is the principal indicator of the
course of life and the fortunes and misfortunes a person faces. It looks as though a
certain pattern of events is shown within this small compass of 12of arc. Since in the
whole zodiac there are 3,600 such divisions, there are obviously 3,600 basic pattern of
destiny. Each of these patterns turns up once each day, due to the apparent
revolution of the zodiac. It is these patterns that ideally form the basis of all
secondary analysis furnished by the asterism in which the planets are found. The
actual Ascendant is the very zodiacal point which is coming up over the horizon at
the moment of birth. In strict fact, this zodiacal point should be located up to six
minutes of space. A difference of six minutes of space marks a world of difference. It
places a birth in an entirely different pattern of destiny.
It is believed that the ancient sages of India called the Saptarishis or the seven
ascetics - Atri, Bharadwaja, Gautama, Jamadagni, Kashyapa, Vasishtha and
Vishwamitra (according to Shatapatha Brahmana and Brihadaranyaka Upanishad) had
predicted the past, present and the future of individuals, some 2000 years ago. There
are disputes too about who are known as the Saptarishis. The veracity of this claim
and the historical timeframe has not yet been established conclusively.
It is understood from various investigations carried out by some astrologers
(including western) that the predictions were written in an ancient Tamil script
called Vattelettu on palm leaves. These leaves were said to be preserved in
Thanjavur's Saraswati Mahal Library in Tamil Nadu. These leaves are said to have
been auctioned by the British during their colonial rule in India. Some of the
astrologers or their families Vaitheeswaran temple had purchased these leaves.
Around 1300 AD, some people found these leaves in the Vaitheeswaran temple and
realising their immense worth made duplicate copies and passed them on to their
subsequent generations. These so-called nadi astrologers earn their livelihood by
reading from the palm leaves when customers seeking answers to their problems or
questions visit them.

Says Sepharial, the famous English astrologer: "In India this particular line of
research has long since been carried out to a condition bordering on perfection. It is
to be found embodied in the famous Nadi Granthas such as Sukra Nadi and others
of equal repute. In these Kadjans, which consist of original or copied writings
executed on the palmyrah leaves by means of the stylus, the influence and nature of
various degrees are given with great precision, separate phalam being given for
every 10th part of the degree of six minutes of space measured on the ecliptic.
Procedure adopted by Nadi Astrologers
P.V.R. Rayudu, in an article titled Nadi Astrology An Introduction in "The Times
of Astrology" Magazine, New Delhi, India (Jan 2000), describes the procedure
followed by the nadi astrologer in this fashion
The Nadi Astrologer is generally busy and one has to take an appointment with
him a month before approximately. When you go there on the appointed day he
checks his dairy and take the three impressions of the right thumb for males and the
left thumb for females on a paper giving serial order number and ask you to wait till
he calls you. Then he goes inside his library room where the palm leaves are kept
which is not accessible to others. After an hour or so, sometimes quicker, he comes
back with an old palm leaf bundle called index leaves. After making himself
comfortable he carefully unwinds the long string which keeps the bundle in tact. He
tells you to answer yes or no to his questions. With great devotion he takes the first
palm leaf and starts reading on one side. The reading style is of funny accent in a
poetic way, not understandable to even Tamilians. After reading one or two lines or
even less sometimes he asks you some questions and you have to answer yes or no
only. If you say 'No' he proceeds to the other side of leaf or next leaf and continues
his questions. The questions are generally one or two at a time , such as whether our
name is after some God /Goddess contains 3 or 4 or so letters or so, starts ends with
a particular letter in a Varga (series) of the Hindu alphabets, Similarly about the
names of parents and wife/husband whether anyone of them or both are alive or
dead, number of elder and younger brothers and sisters, number of children number
of uncles, type of profession, whether you are born in rainy season /summer etc.
whether you are born in moveable /fixed/dual Moon and lagna rasis, whether you
are born in a particular Moon Birth Star whether you are born in a particular day in a
particular year whether your age is so and so etc. He says that h e does not know
what questions to ask unless he scans the leaves and that is why they generally insist
the concerned person or a person who knows every detail about the persons
consulted, should be present to answer the questions correctly; otherwise they say
the readings won't go wrong. They do not bother much of you cannot answer
questions about birth date month age, Moon rasi and star, lagna and they seem to

bother more about matching of your name names of parents and wife/husband. If
he gets 'No' answers to all the leaves of the first bundle which he goes back into his
library and brings another bundle. This process continues for an hour or so generally
covering generally up to bundles each consisting about 50 leaves or sometimes
quickly even in the first bundle till he and your are satisfied and the answers to all
the questions in a particular leaf are 'yes' only concerning names, parents, wife
/husband, siblings, profession etc.
Then he goes inside and bring another particular bundle and reads in poetic style
your actual birth date month land year the astrological birth chart with position of
planets sometimes with lagna also exact names of yourself, parents, wife/ husband,
co-born, education, profession and gist of future predictions in a broad way and this
is called General Kandam (chapter) of first bhava. You can verify the chart given if
you know your birth chart he writes the concerned verses from the leaf in a note
book . Then he records the same in an audio tape with translation into common
understandable Tamil or some other languages with the help of a translator if
necessary. He generally charges a minimum of 400 rupees up to this General
Kandam Then he asks you whether you want to more details about any particular
aspect of your life such as marriage, profession, etc and if so he picks up
corresponding bundle and charges a similar amount extra for each aspect which he
calls it a separate kandam or chapter. Some chapters give details about previous
birth, remedial measures etc. At the end he hands over the note book and audio tape
to you with devotion and takes money generally at the place where the photos of
Gods /Goddess are there.
Even if an exact chart with degrees of planets are given, can any astrologer predict
the exact names of parents, co-born, spouse etc. unless he has some extraordinary
psychic powers beyond any scientific explanation? This is one mystery which
researchers try to discover. In olden days, newborns were named in India based on
the letters prescribed for the Janma Tara (Birth Star) and its pada (quarter).
Nowadays, we encounter modern names almost unheard of earlier! However, the
nadi astrologers tell the exact names not only of Hindus but to some extent of
foreigners also! Researchers are clueless about the astrological principle that renders
telling exact names, ruling out the remote possibility of detective work.
Research in Nadi Astrology
Several savants of astrology had made in depth studies in this regard. Since the palm
leaves are in the possession of their caretakers, these are more or less secrets and
beyond the reach of researchers. Firstly, one needs to understand the script
(Vattelettu) in which it is written. Secondly, the owners of these leaves must be
willing to share their possessions with outsiders. In the early 20th century, Bh.

Satyanarayana Rao had personally met some nadi astrologers to learn as well as test
the accuracy of their predictions as mentioned in his A Textbook of Scientific
In 1957, K. V. Venkataramanan published an article titled The Wonders of Nadi
Astrology in The Astrological Magazine which was then edited by B. V. Raman, a
world renowned Indian astrologer. He recounts his experience with a layman who
was in possession of Bhrigu Samhita, an ancient text on nadi astrology. The
predictions made by the text proved to be accurate. In later years, several researchers
like B. V. Raman, B. G. Rao, Chandulal Patel etc. worked to evolve a rationale behind
this subject. Chandra Kal Nadi, also known as Deva Keralam, was published by
Sagar Publications in 1992, edited and translated into English by R. Santhanam. It is
a compilation of over 82 hundred verses by Achyut of Kerala but its original basis
was Chandra Kal Ndi. Deva Keralam preserves the gist of Ndi astrology.
However, this text is at variance in its approach when compared with the other ndi
astrology works.
Dr. B. V. Raman, the doyen of astrology in modern India, is said to have obtained the
original Dhruva Nadi along with its code book. In the course of his lecture
delivered at the Astrological Lodge, London on 25th September 1970, he stated:
My revered grandfather, the late Prof. B. Suryanarian Rao used to tell me that when
Sepharial met him about 60 years ago and his reading was read from the Sukra Nadi,
he was almost dumbfounded at the uncanny way in which his life had been
revealed. There are a number of Nadis scattered in different parts of India. In North
India they are known by the name of Samhitas. Some of the Nadis I have seen and
examined are Guru Nadi, Sukra Nadi, Markandya Nadi, Nandi Nadi, Kowmara
Nadi, Suka Nadi, Budha Nadi, Sarwaswati Nadi, Dhruva Nadi and Satya Nadi. Each
Nadi sets before it a certain number of particular questions relating to life-incidents
that appealed to the authors to be of real value to the people. Some of these Nadis
are also available in Oriental Libraries in India but in most cases, the keys are lost so
that it is rather difficult to trace the pattern of the horoscope required. Chandra
Nadi, for instance is available in a mutilated condition in the Oriental Manuscripts
Library at Madras.
Generally each Nadi work is classified into 12 parts.- each part dealing with one
house of the horoscope. Each of these twelve parts is again divided into nine subparts corresponding to the nine Navamsas or 1/9th divisions of a sign or into 12 subparts corresponding to the 12 Dwadasamsas or 1/12 division. Then there are the
Dasas and Bhuktis or progressions. These palm leaves contain predictions of events
on the basis of the main periods and sub-periods. The reading starting from the time
of birth and covering the important landmarks till the time of consultation and

further on till time of death. Three more parts deal with what are called Yoga
khanda, Karma khanda and Shanti khanda. The yoga khanada gives with fairly
accurately ones spiritual, political scientific and social attainments, the degree of
status and wealth, sudden elevations and falls and significant fortunes and
misfortunes with appropriate planetary combinations. In Karma khanda are
enumerated the sins one is supposed to have committed in ones past life and in
what manner the effects of such sins have manifested up to the time of consultation,
and will manifest in the remaining part of this life. And in the Shanti Khanda are
prescribed remedial measures which consist of medicines, yogic practices and
mantras or certain regulated forms of sound vibrations to ward off or minimize the
Some of the Nadis are voluminous. For instance, Saraswathi Nadi has about 1000
bundles of palm leaves, each bundle having about 200 leaves each leaf measuring
about 8 X 2. One bundle contains at least not less than 50 horoscopes so that the
work as a whole has nearly 50,000 horoscopes.
There is one work called Satyasamhita in which as early as 1935, the horoscope of
Mahatma Gandhi and Kind George V could be traced. This Satyasamhita is
stupendous work consisting of 125 volumes. Each volume in its turn has 300 palm
leaves. Its author is supposed to be Satyacharya, a very honored name in classical
Hindu astrology who is said to have lived about 2000 years ago gracing the
illustrious court of Emperor Vikramaditya, the last and the most colorful of Hindu
monarchs. The amazing part of this work is that terms nyayavadi and nyayadarsi are
used to denote modern distinctions between advocate and a solicitor. The
Satyasamhita has the following to say about Mahatma Gandhis horoscope. The
native will be born in a holy city on the coast of the ocean. His father will be Dewan
or Prime minister. At the age of 20 he will go to a foreign country. His mother will
die at the age of 22 in his absence. His father will die when he is 16. He will have
four sons of whom three will be engaged. He will marry at 13. At 32, he will be
lawyer4. He will consider the whole world as his family; will always speak truth and
will be pure-hearted. Pride and arrogance will not touch him. There will be no
distinction between his thoughts, words and deeds. While living as a grihastha or
householder he will live as a hermit at hearth. At 62, he will be very unhappy when
running through the period of Rahu. At age of 66, he will fare well and achieve some
success in his mission. Before 65, he will profitably meet the Emperor of the white
people. His father will have more than one wife and will be born of the second wife.
He will resort to fast for the good of the world and will live above 70.
But it is Dhruva Nadi and Sukra Nadi that are really superb. They not only give
horoscopic patterns but also horoscopic discussions.

In recent times, Shashikant Oak has done a great deal in bringing the Naadi palm
leaf based astrological system into prominence. He has conducted original research
in this field for well over 16 years. His research is presented in a detailed paper
called 'Comparative Study: Nostradamus and Naadi Granthas.'
Prof. Dinesh Chandra who has conducted 38 extensive studies in this subject throws
light in a different aspect altogether in his A Textbook of Nadi Astrology. He
propounds a method of "'Bhagyachakra" i.e., either a horoscope is locked or
unlocked. He says, Locked bhagya chakra means there are no planets in "moksha"
rashis i.e., signs 4, 8, or in" artha" rashis 2, 6, 10 or in "kama" signs i.e., rashis Gemini,
Libra and Aquarius (3, 7, l1) or similarly in~"dharma" signs /rashis 1, 5, 9 signs.
Dharma means religion. Artha means monetary matters. Kama means every type of
work and moksha means salvation or mukti.
As for example lf there are no planets in "dharma" rashis"4, 8, 12; means cancer,
Scorpio and Pisces (means if are vacant) then it can be said that bhagya chakra is
locked in north (as they all are northern signs).it very clearly means that there was
nothing in the northern direction from the place of birth. In the language of a
layman, there was an open plot or open land in the north side to the building of
birth. The native will start work after opening the lock. Similarly big fortune will
start only after the entry of Saturn in that vacant part.
Double locked bhagya chakras are also possible and several such cases are found. It
means no planets in any two such parts narrated above (dharma, artha, karma,
moksha group of signs/rashis).
Investigations made by DelhiPlanet
DelhiPlanet undertook research spread over six years on the truth of nadi astrology.
They summarized their thorough investigation and two-fold experiment with the
following findings

Nadi Astrology is not what it appears to be. Your future is not written on
palm leaves by sages who died thousands of years ago. If these leaves were
truly that old they should have withered away by now rendering the writing
unreadable. Even the original Mona Lisa which is more than 500 years old has
to go through extensive restoration and regular maintenance to maintain its

All Nadi centers are located in houses which are old and primitive. The Nadi
leaves are also stored in small rooms which are closely guarded. Such rooms
however are not suited for storing leaves that are so old. Daily weather
changes, insects, rodents etc can easily destroy these leaves

Nadi Astrology is some sort of a family enterprise which originated in the

south of India. All the members of this fraternity are skilled at the art of
determining your current state using your thumb print and thereafter
predicting the future after making your birth-chart

The leaves simply act as an eye-wash. They are designed to help you buy into
the story being told about your future being written on leaves. In actuality
what they contain is a series of cues and questions that need to be asked, so
that the person gives away everything there is to know themselves

All sessions end with a warning that your problems will get worse if you
dont go in for the remedies. This firmly establishes that Nadi Astrology is
simply a means to create fear in the minds of people using less understood
religious ideology, thereby funding the lives of the members who belong to
the Nadi Astrology fraternity

Based on a detailed study of the various researches and claims, I feel there are
some broad areas of commonality:
1. All nadi astrology researchers agree that there is indeed some curiosity in the
entire affair.
2. There is no reference to the ascendant (the rising sign at birth) in nadi
readings. In other words, time of birth is irrelevant.
3. Astrological predictions are based solely on Vaakya (mathematically
calculated planetary motions) and not on Drik (astronomically determined
motion or actual) method.
4. Saturn, Jupiter, Rahu (Dragon-Head or Caput) and Ketu (Dragon-Tail or
Cauda) are only to be considered for delineations based on transits. The
average periods of revolution (360 degrees of zodiac) of these planets and
nodal points are 30 years, 12 years, 18 years and 18 years respectively.
5. Thumb impressions are a must for locating ones horoscope.
6. Astrological predictions made by the nadi astrologers about ones future are
found to be rarely accurate.
7. Nadis may not be available for everybody.
8. All nadi astrologers suggest remedial measures in each and every case.
There is, however, a difference of opinion on the issue of seeking of personal
information from the individual by the nadi astrologer. While some (like Rayudu)
state that it is surprising how the nadi astrologers can predict the name of the
individual from the horoscope, there are some (like DelhiPlanet) who mention that

about 200 questions have to be answered in yes or no including the starting letter
of the individual, of his / her parents, number of letters in the name etc.
There are two possibilities for the correctness of the predictions of the past:
1. The nadi readings prepared by the great sages of yore could be the actual
horoscopes of people then living in the era of the sages. Since the planetary
positions would repeat at periodic intervals, the same horoscope and its
results should follow periodically since the delineations are based on the
horoscope. This opinion comes from Bh. Satyanarayana Rao in the preface to
his A Textbook of Scientific Astrology. On the contrary, it could also mean
that the nadi readings were theoretically worked out for 3600 nadi amsas.
2. There is a tradition in most parts of India (and probably in other countries
too) of naming the grandson or granddaughter after the grandfather or
grandmother or after gods and goddesses. So, ascertaining the names should
not be a problem. However, the nadi astrologers have not been tested with
modern / fashionable names.
One confusing aspect of the whole study is the fact that while the nadi astrologer
does not want the time of birth, the nadi amsa is calculated very precisely.
It is not known whether Dr. B. V. Raman completed his rendering of Dhruva Nadi into
English before he left for heavenly abode since it is felt by several astrologers that he had
dwelt in his articles only on a few portions of the text which had come under his possession.
Another surprising element is the fact that the horoscope divisions as per Parashara
(author of Brihat Parashara Hora Shastra) known as Shodasa Varga (sixteen
divisions) when arranged in ascending order of their extent match up to 150
divisions. Is the nadi amsa, a summarised version of the Shodasa Varga?
Note: This is an overall summary of my notes made during the course of understanding the
vast subject of Nadi Astrology. The author does not lay any claim on originality nor to its
comprehensiveness but at the same time salutes the savants of this subject who have poured
out their wisdom for the benefit of students.