Do you Know Your Ishta Devata? Know from your own Horoscope
Ishta-Deva or Ishta Devata इष्टदेवता, literally means “cherished divinity” from iṣṭa, “desired, liked, cherished, preferred” and devatā, “godhead, divinity, tutelary deity” or deva, “deity”
Ishta Devata literally translates to ‘the favored deity whom we worship, and is the higher power, whom we connect spiritually. One chooses to worship the form of God that inspires them.
The ishtadeva concept is meaningful in the Vedic context where religious pluralism has had a long history and where different Gods were available for choosing. From among these, a person chooses one which becomes her ishtadeva. The most popular ishatadevas, today, include, Shiva, Vishnu, especially in one of Vishnu’s human incarnations like Rama and Krishna, and the Mother Goddess in one of her many forms such as Kali or Durga.
There might be a lot of confusion on choosing the istadevta. Here, Jyotish Shaastra come in handy. There are process and techniques to decode one’s istadevta. Before jumping onto the process lets first understand what is a horoscope or kundali. Kundali is a sky map of the exact moment of one’s birth. There are many divisions of kundali in Vedic Jyotisha. They are called the Divisional Charts. Each rasi of 30 degrees is further subdivided and by employing a series rules new additional charts are made.
There are 16 divisional charts. They are:
1. Rashi or the Lagna chart as it is of 30º to study all aspects of life.
2. Hora or one-half of a sign -15º is the varga to study wealth.
3. Drekkana or one-third of a sign – 10º is the varga to study siblings.
4. Chaturthamsha or one-fourth of a sign – 7º30′ is the varga to study destiny and house.
5. Saptamsha or one-seventh of a sign – 4º17`8.5″ is the varga to study progeny.
6. Navamsha or one-ninth of a sign – 3º20′ is the varga for spouse and many other things.
7. Dashamsha or one-tenth of a sign – 3º- is the varga to study ones profession.
8. Dwadashamsha or one-twelfth of a sign -2º30′- is the varga to study parents.
9. Shodashamsha or one-sixteenth of a sign -1º52’30”- is the varga to study conveyance.
10. Vimshamsha or one-twentieth of a sign -1º30′- is the varga to study spiritual progress.
11. Chaturvimshamsha or one-twenty fourth of a sign -1º15′- is to study knowledge.
12. Saptavimshamsha or one-twenty seventh of a sign -1º6’40”- is to study the strength.
13. Trimshamsha or one-thirtieth of a sign – 1º00′- is misfortunes and nature.
14. Khavedamsha or one-fortieth of a sign – 0º45′ is for auspicious & inauspicious effects.
15. Akshavedamsha or one-forty fifth of a sign 0º40′ is for all areas of life.
16.Shashtyamsha or one-sixtieth of a sign 0º30′ is for all general effects.
Of these the Navamsha is the most important varga. Apart from studying the spouse and married/sex life, it is also studied to evaluate the strengths, weaknesses and the effects of the planets with respect to all areas of life. It is from this varga, one’s Istadevta is calculated. Now lets jump to the process.
Process in finding Isht Devta
Step 1: In the birth chart (D-1), look out for the Atmakaraka (AK).
Atmakaraka is the planet that attains maximum degrees in the birth chart.
Step 2: See which Rashi (sign) is occupied by the Atmakaraka planet in Navamsa (D-9). The sign, in navamsa, which is occupied by Atmakaraka planet is called Karakamsha.
Step 3: Note which plant/s occupies the 12th house or sign from Karakamsha. Ishta Devta is to be ascertained by this planet / these planets. In case, 12th house or sign from Karakamsha is empty (means no planet occupies it), we have to see for its lordship to know the Ishta Devta.
Sun Shiva, Rama
Moon Krishna, Gauri, Lalita, Saraswati
Mars Hanuman, Kartikeya (Subrahmanya)Narasimha
Mercury Vishnu, Narayana, Buddha
Jupiter Hayagreeva, Vishnu, Indra, Dattatreya
Venus Lakshmi, Parvati
Saturn Vishnu, Brahma
Rahu Durga, Narasimha
The list of those various incarnations of Lord Vishnu and planets associated with them is given in the Brihat Parashara Hora Shastra (Chapter 2, verses 5-7), and is placed below for your convenience of understanding;
Planet Shree Vishnu Avatar
Sun Shree Rama
Moon Shree Krishna
Mars Shree Narasimha
Mercury Shree Buddha
Jupiter Shree Vamana
Venus Shree Parashurama
Saturn Shree Koorma
Rahu Shree Varaha
Ketu Shree Matsya
Jaimini Maharishi has also mentioned planetary equivalents of various deities in his Upadesha Sutras (1.2.72–79). As per Jaimini Sutram, the following is the association between planets and corresponding deities;
Sun (Surya) – Lord Shiva
Moon (Chandra) – Gouri
Venus (Shukra) – Lakshmi
Mars (Mangal) – Skanda (Kartikeya)
Mercury (Buddha) – Lord Vishnu
Saturn (Shani) – Lord Vishnu
Jupiter (Guru) – Samba Shiva
Rahu – Tamasi or Durga
Ketu – Lord Ganesha
Vedic Astrology characterizes the accomplishment of moksha as the lone reason in life for each person. Our Ishta Devata or picked divinity is the one whom we appeal to, and who can direct us to our actual reason – salvation. As per astrology, one should definitely worship their specific Ishta Devata.