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What Is Remediation in Vedic Astrology and How Is It Used?

Last year, I switched from exclusively practicingWestern Astrology to primarily practicing Jyotish (Vedic astrology) – and remediation is one of the key reasons why I have chosen to do so. Since my clients often only know Western astrology, if they know much about astrology at all, I always have to give a little spiel first explaining what remediation is and what it can offer them.

To offer potential clients a little pre-reading info, as well as share my knowledge with anyone else who might be interested in Jyotish and remediation, I thought I’d write this little post. 

So here goes.

Remediation: the nuts and bolts

Vedic astrology, remediation refers to the various measures or rituals that are recommended to mitigate the negative effects of planetary positions and doshas (flaws) in a person’s birth chart. Remedial measures are prescribed to counteract the adverse influence of malefic planets or to strengthen the beneficial effects of auspicious planets.

These remedial measures can include various practices such as wearing specific gemstones, performing specific rituals or pujas, chanting mantras, offering prayers, observing fasts, making donations, doing charitable works, etc. The objective of these remedies (i.e., think “medicine”) is to help a person overcome the negative effects of planetary positions and to enhance the positive effects of beneficial planets.

The specific remedial measures that are recommended for you depend on your particular birth chart. Your unique planetary positions, doshas, and other factors must be taken into account before suggesting the most appropriate remedial measures. 

Why do we need remediation?

To explore this questions let’s first get metaphorical.

Image three acorns, planted in three different places. One is planted in good soil with plenty of water, but with too little sun. As it grows, it becomes stunted and weaker than other trees planted in sunnier spot. Another acorn is planted in a place with perfect sun, and it grows tall, it’s leaves spread out. But it doesn’t have a reliable source of water; it’s leaves dry out and its branches become brittle in the wind. The third acorn is planted in the perfect place, and so the tree grows lush and strong. That is, until a plague of locusts comes one summer and strips it clean.

Three acorns, the same shape and size at the start, with three different fates and situations. 

The first acorn might suggest someone who had a supportive upbringing and happy relationships, and yet they struggle in their career. The second might be a person who is very successful in their career, but they have a hard time being vulnerable and close to other people. The third could be someone who was doing very well in general, until they become ill or experience loss at a certain time in their life.

According to Vedic astrology, the roots of such suffering is Karmic – but that doesn’t mean you just have to grin and bear it. To get the gears working again, you need to first remove the rust, replace parts or add lubricant. That way, all four pillars of life can be brought into better balance. This is where remediation comes into play.

Four standard types of remediation*

Donation

Photo by Christian Dubovan on Unsplash

Donations are a very effective and safe way to remedy challenges in your birth chart and the suffering they cause. The idea here is to create positive karma to neutralize and transform the negative karma indicated in your chart which is causing you problems. To do so, you help alleviate the suffering of those embodied by the issues in your chart.

For example, if Venus is cursed in a person’s chart, this might mean they have issues in finding happiness in relationships. To improve this karmic condition, the person could donate time or money to a group of people who embody the suffering indicated in their chart – in the case of Venus, this would be women or anyone involved in the fine arts. 

Therefore, the person could do something like donating money to a charity that helps women get out of sex industry, donating food and clothing to a battered women’s shelter or volunteering at a local arts center. 

The most effective donation will depend on the particular planet and its condition in an individual chart; however, donation brings good karma in general, which means it is one of the easiest and safest forms of remediation available.

Puja

Photo by Udayaditya Barua on Unsplash

Of the different types of remediation, puja is the one most Westerners tend to have a hard time wrapping their head around, although the concept should be well known to anyone living in India. Puja actually just means ritual, and is usually designed to either bring you material benefits or bring you closer to the divine. In its most basic form, it could involve offering prayers, lamps, fruit, flowers and incense to a deity or group of deities. In Christian terms, it could even be something like taking holy communion.

When it comes to Jyotish, the idea again is to do puja that remedies a particular planet in your chart or a difficult condition (e.g., birth during the new moon). Although you can learn to perform simple puja at home, in many cases you need to hire a Brahmin priest to do it for you to achieve the results you need. My teacher has described puja as a “make it rain” remedy that can bring quicker results than a mantra, for example. 

Like donations, puja might not necessarily give you the results you want if it’s not exactly the right one you need or it was performed by an incompetent (or dishonest) priest, but it will always bring something positive into your life and is therefore a completely safe form of remediation.

Mantra

Photo by Alin Andersen on Unsplash

Another important form of remediation are mantras. Mantras are prescribed according to what is causing problems in the chart, and each planet has a deity and/or deities that can help alleviate the issue. For example, if the person has problems with Mercury in their chart, they often are given a Vishnu mantra to work with, while someone who some issues with Venus may work with Lakshmi. They then chant these mantras on a mala (rosary), which has 108 beads.

Personally, I love mantras, but they aren’t for everyone because they do require discipline when used for remediation. For the mantra to be truly effective, the person often needs to do a longer, more intensive practice of the mantra for a set period of days. 

There are literally thousands upon thousands of mantras. Some are completely safe and free for anyone to chant, while others require initiation from a teacher. Mantras also can be dangerous, such as the Mahavidya mantras, which can cause more harm than good if you chant the wrong one. 

However, if you chant the right one (which can only be prescribed by someone who has the authority to do so), these mantras can make powerful medicine and may be just what the a person needs, in the same way that cancer may require chemotherapy to heal while others ailments are easily soothed with a couple of aspirin.

Gemstones

Photo by Alin Andersen on Unsplash

The fourth common form of remediation is wearing a gemstone that correlates to the planet that needs boosting (e.g., ruby for the the sun, pearl for the moon, yellow sapphire for Jupiter, etc.). The finger you wear the ring on will depend on the results desired, although in general you should never wear it on your index finger. This finger is considered the “ego” finger and is inauspicious (I learned this rule the hard way – more on that when I write the post about gemstones!)

If you’re like me, wearing a gemstone for remediation sounds fantastic. A beautiful piece of jewellry that also bring positive healing into your life – I’m in!

However, gemstones are actually very tricky to get right and can easily cause more harm than good. Why? Because they only boost, but they don’t think.

In other words, if you wore a diamond (Venus gemstone), but Venus was in poor condition and in a difficult house, you would end up boosting and intensifying your relationship problem instead of pacifying them.

All forms of astrology have their less serious, pop version as well as charlatans who take advantage of people. In Jyotish, one of these versions are “astrologers” who are also jewellers on the side – transform your life by buying this ring from me for $3000! Not only is this dishonest, it is also potentially harmful.

Remedies from other traditions

One of the things I love about the Jyotish lineage I am involved in is that it is in no way dogmatic when it comes to remediation. If your chart would benefit from, say, working with Ganesha, you are free to do so regardless of your religion. However, if it makes you feel uncomfortable, or you’d rather work with something that better fits your own spiritual path, that’s perfectly fine. As long as what you choose a figure who has similar vibrations, it will work just as well.

Don’t feel comfortable with mantra, puja or deities at all? Then stick with donation and service. Whatever you choose, consistency is key in order to achieve results.

*I’ll be writing a more detailed guide about each type of remediation in the future, and my own experience using and prescribing them, so subscribe and stayed tuned!

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