Rise above the mundane…and material..says Ketu, the planet of detachment!
Ketu, the oft-feared shadow planet, also referred to as the South Node of the Moon, or the tail of the dragon, is closely associated with Tuesdays. Apart from Mars, this is another planet that has been Astrologically and as per the Vedic scriptures associated with the second day of the week. Here are some more associations of Ketu –
Colours of the day: Smoky Grey, Grey.
Number represented : 7
Gemstone: Cat’s eye (Lehsunia)
Representative Deity: Lord Ganesha
Mantra of Ketu: Om Kem Ketave Namah
Nature and Caste: Ketu is held as Tamasik in nature, and is considered of a mixed caste.
Friendly Planets: Mercury, Saturn and Venus
Enemy Planets: Sun, Moon and Mars
Neutral Planets: Jupiter
Ketu or the South-node of the moon is a shadowy planet i.e. as per Vedic Astrology, placed always in diagonal opposition (180 degrees apart) to Rahu- the North node of the moon.
Ketu, as aforementioned is a shadow planet or chaya grah, and behaves quite similarly to the planet of Mars. It is friendly with Mercury, Saturn and Venus. Its prime enemies are the Moon, the Sun, Mars, and it is neutral with Jupiter.
With an imagery of a headless, half-bodied, smoky planet, Ketu is generally known as the planet of illusion, detachment, spirituality, asceticism, secrets, apart from various other things. Vedic Scriptures hold him as Tamasik and malefic in nature, but not as malefic as Rahu. Rahu and Ketu are half-bodied; Rahu with the upper half and Ketu with the lower half. So, individually, each of the shadow planet’s form is incomplete, which symbolizes their never-ending quest for satisfaction and fulfillment.
It is said that Rahu gives, while Ketu takes away. But there is a deeper meaning to this anecdote. Rahu represents absolute materialism, whereas Ketu stands for pure detachment and a spiritually driven worldly disconnect. Therefore, Rahu will tend to drown the person more and more into worldly enjoyments and indulgences, luring the native towards illusions and temptations, while Ketu will try to drive him towards spirituality and gaining higher wisdom. In order to achieve that Ketu is believed to take away the material possessions, resulting in financial crises for a person. Another difference between Rahu and Ketu is that Rahu is known to be directly mischievous, malefic, barbaric and crude, while Ketu is almost the same, but it operates in a relatively subtle manner. Thus, subtlety is the thin line between Rahu and Ketu. Moreover, it is observed that while Rahu is domineering and autocratic in nature, Ketu is submissive and susceptible.
As per many ancient Astrology texts, Ketu is mysterious with complete uncertainty about its form, existence, activity, thoughts, tendencies and behaviour. It is very difficult to predict or comprehend what may be brewing within the being of Ketu. Ketu is also, generally, the least talked about planet in Astrology, and there always remains an aura of infinite mystery and intrigue about Ketu and its characteristics. Though much literature has been composed about Ketu and its ways and traits, Astrologers have never been completely able to decipher the exact picture of Ketu.
Ganesha takes a deeper dive, and presents some detailed aspects about Ketu- the eternal wanderer…..
Generally, to understand a person’s behaviour, expressions, thoughts, feelings, emotions, nature, you need to know his face, appearance, body language, eye movement and such bodily attributes, but how will you know anything clearly about a person who does not have an upper body? Would you be able to know where and what he is looking at, what are his expressions, what is he thinking?
Does that sound strange and scary? Well, that’s just an example given by Ganesha to make it easier for you to understand Ketu better! Ganesha says that as Ketu is a planet without the upper body, it behaves in a strange and incomprehensible manner. Ketu is obsessive, unstable, elusive, extremist and intriguing, possessing animalistic and awful tendencies. It is known to behave fanatically, sometimes even without logic and proper reasoning, with unforgiving brutality.
Ketu possesses the power to rattle the wits of even the bravest! Ketu is all about subtle, sudden, unexposed, unpredictable, secret and latent capabilities and power. Ketu always represents functioning in an unnoticeable manner. That is why, it itself remains the least discussed planet in Astrology. Most of the activities that happen without coming to people’s notice are the activities that are represented by Ketu. Thus, Ketu can produce the finest informers and spies. The greatest Intelligence Officers, Undercover Agents and Covert Operations specialists normally are found to have a significant influence of Ketu in their Birth-Charts. **Other planetary combinations and factors are also to be studied deeply and taken into consideration, though. Ganesha clarifies that the effect of Ketu is not solely responsible for the aforesaid aspects, even other planetary combinations and factors have to be taken into consideration. Thus, it can be said that, any areas requiring stealth, the ability to be unpredictable and the power to overwhelm the opposition requires the grace of Ketu.
The favourable and unfavourable aspects of Ketu:
Ketu can produce the best of magicians, exorcists, military commanders, militants, healers, masters of occult, spies, ascetics, hermits, writers of spiritual texts, donors, philanthropists, interpreters of the vedic texts and mantras, architects of places of worship, guides in the religious places, ascetics practicing rigourous spiritual activities, etc. It will make the person believe in the ideology of “Live simple, think high’. Such a person will give more importance to making other people happy, even if he does not get the required happiness in return. Due to the benefic influence of Ketu, the person will be extremely flexible and adaptable with a compromising nature, he will possess good knowledge about various sciences and would be good at giving suggestions to other people’s problems, he can be a good conversationalist, he can make profits from any source he may prefer. Such natives are true Sanyasis at heart, even though they may be surrounded with excellent luxuries all around. Such individuals are the perfect candidates for becoming great researchers, philanthropists. They may comprise people who are always organizing charity events, building or establishing orphanages or old-age homes, rest-houses for pilgrims, spirituality or yoga centers, museums, blood-donation centers, spirituality or religious exhibitions, etc. Such people are driven to aim for the well-being of others, and they may really believe in the saying- “Service to man is service to God”. Natives with a benefic Ketu in their Chart blesses a native with a strong sense of intuition and the ability to foresee the events that may happen in the future. Individuals with a strong Ketu can also become good Astrologers, Tarot-Card Readers, Writers, Teachers, Scientists, Spiritual Healers, Yoga Instructors, Forest Rangers.
Ketu can give rise to merciless fanatics, immoral scoundrels, people with a tendency for mental or physical derangement, people with unusual and horrifying tendencies, people with strange illnesses, hypocrites, executioners or be-headers, psychopaths, torturers, animal-hunters, serial-killers, and indicates problems and dangers through cats, poisonous insects, reptiles, etc. It is also observed that the professions represented by Ketu are the ones that involve a lot of risk, danger, physical and mental strain. The most dangerous aspect about an ill-disposed Ketu in the horoscope is that it may make the native experience a horrifying Near-Death Experience. It can be an accident, an electric shock, falling from a terrace of a building, a bomb explosion or a terrorist attack.
Ketu also rules all the viruses in our body and may even make the native suffer from viral infections. The individuals with an unfavourable influence of Ketu in the Birth Chart may not have a good dressing sense. Such people also tend to have strange tendencies. They may grow their beards for a long time, and then suddenly shave it. They wear odd combinations in clothes and may have a bad hair-style. They make lack personal hygiene, and would appear insignificant in front of others, due to a lack of charisma and charm. They tend to suspect their life-partners without any justified reason, and thus spoil their relations. They keep claiming themselves to be honest people, though their actions may be contrary to the claims. They do not have great ambitions, and would also try to convince others to remain simple. They may pick up fights with anyone who may not agree with their opinions and ideas. They may have a career, wherein, in spite of great hard-work, they may be paid lesser than the norm.
The effects of Ketu in a Birth Chart
A strong influence of Ketu in the Natal Birth-Chart also indicates that the native will be of a shady nature, with suppressed feelings and expressions, hidden talents, great imaginative power, compromising nature, latent violent tendencies, with a contemptuous attitude, unsteady and indecisive nature, vulnerability, etc. The real thoughts and opinions of such individuals can never be known. Though such people will agree to what others say, there will always be an internal voice disagreeing with it. Such people also tend to excel at keeping secrets and accomplishing tasks in an unnoticed manner. However, there will always be a feeling of unfulfillment and dissatisfaction encircling the minds of such natives. They generally feel that there is still something that they might have missed out upon, even when they have achieved what they had set out to achieve.
Ketu, Karma and our past lives
It is said that Ketu keeps a constant check on our Karma, and it represents the balance of our Karma- whether Good or Bad. It can even be referred to as the Celestial Accountant of the People’s Karma. Ganesha says that in modern terms, it can be even called the Virtual CCTV Camera!
Moreover, Ketu is the reflection of our past Karma and our personality in our past lives. It represents the fields in which we have excelled in or the areas in which we had special interest in, our strengths, our associations-connections-attachments, our attitude and behaviour, etc. in the past birth. We can get an idea of the personality/life patterns of an individual, by analyzing the placement and nature of Ketu in the Birth-Chart or Kundali. Ganesha seeks to explain this concept with an example. If a person has a strong or positive Ketu in the 2nd House of his Birth Chart, with benefic aspects, then it signifies that the person, in his past birth, would have been a great communicator or a singer or a teacher or an orator or would have been efficient in any of the fields or areas that the 2nd House in Astrology represents. Conversely, if a weak or negative Ketu is posited in the 2nd House, then it represents that the individual’s soul would have suffered on account of family or deficiency in speech or problems due to food or problems in the throat in the previous birth.
Ketu is the reflection of all the baggage of values and motives that we have brought into this birth. With a proper study of the placement of Ketu in a Birth-Chart, we can also get a hint or an idea that in what area a person is bound to perform well and where his interests and inclinations lie in the current birth. Thus, there is great importance of Ketu- the otherwise less talked about planet. The house which Ketu occupies in a Birth-Chart is surely bound to have a Karmic connection with the previous birth and our deeds in the past life.
Ketu and its link with Jupiter and Mercury and Ketu’s role in Spirituality
As Ketu represents detachment from worldly bondages, it is also known as the Moksha-karaka or the factor responsible for attaining salvation. It keeps reminding a person of the significance and importance of spirituality and higher wisdom, through various experiences. Being a philosophical planet, it also constantly pushes a person to proceed further on the path of spirituality, and it may make the native seek the fulfillment through spirituality and philosophy.
It makes us realize that the more we detach ourselves from this materialistic and vain enticements of this world (often referred to as Maya in various religious texts), the more we will be able to connect better to the ultimate reality or the supreme truth or the most powerful force- that is GOD.
Ketu also forms the middle line between Jupiter (Spirituality-Religion) and Mercury (Intelligence-Intellect). Because, Ketu represents detachment and renunciation as said earlier, so only after achieving these two stages can one progress well on the path pf spirituality and religion.
Spirituality is not only about reciting some mantras or meditating, it is also about understanding the significance and importance of the practices that are being done. So, the help of Mercury is also required.
In summation – Spiritual Inclination (Jupiter), Logic and Understanding (Mercury) and the ability to realise the real goal and detachment (Ketu) come together to produce the desired effect of achieving a higher level of wisdom, through detachment from the material. In short, Ketu acts as a catalyst in the processes of planets of Jupiter and Mercury.
Now, you know that Ketu is quite capable of giving you vastly positive platforms in life, given it is well-placed and pacified. Here are some Vedic ways one can perform to appease Ketu –
1) Ketu gets very easily pleased when a person worships Lord Ganesha. So, you may worship Lord Ganesha and chant the Mantra – “Om Gan Ganapathye Namah” 108 times on Tuesdays, especially in the evening time.
2) Offer Green Blades of Grass (Doorva grass) to Lord Ganesha and Hibiscus flowers.
3) Ketu represents the most downtrodden and despised. So, provide help to the most ignored and poor beings and donate Grey coloured clothes to them.
4) Keep some Doorva grass in your pocket.
5) Feed green grass (normal) to donkeys and asses, as they are the most despised amongst animals, thus Ketu shall be pleased.
In short, keep a clean heart, be a friend to the needy and underprivileged and focus on spiritual goals than just the material goals. May Lord Ganesha bless us all.
With Ganesha’s Grace,