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The Nakshatra Fact Sheet: Classification Of Nakshatras

The Nakshatras are the fixed stars, asterisms or ‘lunar mansions’ in the zodiac. While the Rashis subdivide the Zodiac into 30-degree sections, the Nakshatras divide it into 13 degree and 20-minute sections. They are assigned many different characteristics that include ruling planets, gender, temperament, symbols, deities, animal symbols and also syllables. Each of these characteristics of the Nakshatra finds use in many applications of Vedic astrology from chart interpretation, name selection for a baby as well as Panchang and Muhurta selection.

The Stars Or Nakshatras Have So Many Different Characteristics
The Stars Or Nakshatras Have So Many Different Characteristics

Janma Nakshatra: The Most Important Nakshatra

In Vedic astrology, much importance is given to the Nakshatra where the Moon is placed. This is the Janma Nakshatra. It is easy enough to find this by using an online Nakshatra finder. It is the ruling planet of this Nakshatra that defines the first Dasha in the Vimshottari Dasha system and the sequence of Dashas thereafter. Traditional name selection for a child is also done to match the syllables that are assigned to the Nakshatra. Matching of birth charts such as Ashtakoot or Gun Milan is between the Moon Nakshatras of the couple. It is only when this condition is satisfied that the next step of matchmaking proceeds.

The Moon Nakshatra Is Called The Janma Nakshatra
The Moon Nakshatra Is Called The Janma Nakshatra

In Panchang, the Nakshatra of the day is also very important. It is the combination of the Nakshatra with the Tithi and other aspects of the day that makes it suitable for certain actions as well as occasions. On a personal level, the Nakshatra today compared to the Janma Nakshatra defines Tarabal or Tarabalam for the person.

Nakshatras: Written In the Stars
Nakshatras: Written In the Stars

The Nakshatras: Planetary Rulers And Their Degrees

The Nakshatras each span 13 degrees and 20 minutes of the Zodiac. This makes 27 Nakshatras across Rashi borders. The Nakshatras also have planetary rulers that are assigned as per the Vimshottari Dasha sequence. Systems of astrology that use the rulers of Nakshatras and also give great importance to the Nakshatra where each planet is placed.

No.NakshatraLordDegrees
1AshwiniKetu 0° – 13°20′ Mesha
2BharaniVenus13° 20′ – 26°40′ Mesha
3KrittikaSun26°40′ Mesha – 10° Rishaba
4RohiniMoon10° – 23°20′ Rishaba
5MrigashirshaMars23° 20′ Rishaba – 6° 40′ Mithuna
6ArdraRahu 6° 40′ – 20° Mithuna
7PunarvasuJupiter20° Mithuna – 3°20′ Karka
8PushyaSaturn3°20′ -16°40′ Karka
9AshleshaMercury10°26′ – 30° Karka
10MaghaKetu0° – 13°20′ Simha
11Purva PhalguniVenus13°20′ – 26°40′ Simha
12Uttara PhalguniSun26°40′ Simha- 10° Kanya
13HastaMoon10° – 23°20′ Kanya
14ChitraMars23°20′ Kanya – 6°40′ Tula
15SwatiRahu6°40′ – 20° Tula
16VishakhaJupiter 20° Tula – 3°20′ Vrishchik
17AnuradhaSaturn3°20′ – 16°40′ Vrishchik
18JyeshtaMercury16°40′ – 30° Vrishchik
19MulaKetu0° – 13°20′ Dhanush
20PurvashadhaVenus13°20′ – 26°40′ Dhanush
21UttarashadhaSun26°40′ Dhanush – 10° Makara
22ShravanaMoon10° – 23°20′ Makara
23DhanisthaMars23°20′ Makara – 6°40′ Kumbha
24ShatabhishakRahu6°40′ – 20° Kumbha
25PurvabhadrapadaJupiter20° Kumbha – 3°20′ Meena
26UttarabhadrapadaSaturn3°20′ – 16°40′ Meena
27RevatiMercury16°40′ – 30° Meena
Nakshatra Symbols
Nakshatra Symbols

Nakshatra Temperament

The temperament of the Nakshatra defines the temperament of the person. The selection of Muhurta is also done in line with the temperament of the Nakshatra.

The different temperaments assigned are

  • Sthira Or Fixed/Constant: Uttara Phalguni, Uttarashada, Uttarabhadrapada and also Rohini. These fixed Nakshatras are good for any activity that is meant to last long such as laying the foundation for a house, digging a well or any other such activity.
  • Chara/Chala Or Movable: Swati, Punarvasu, Dhanishta as well as Satabishak. These stars are good for activities that require speed and also movement. Some examples are buying automobiles, starting a journey, starting machinery or factory as well as starting to drive a vehicle. 
  • Ugra/Krura Or Fierce/Cruel: Purva Phalguni, Purvashadha, Purvabhadrapada, Bharani as well as Magha are fierce Nakshatras. They are good for sharp, cruel, destructive and also volatile acts. These include acts of demolishing, breaking up, facing the enemy, imprisonment and any other work that is destructive and requires force. 
  • Kshipra/Laghu Or Swift/Short/Dynamic: Ashwini, Pushya as well as Hasta are good for acts of business, raising or settling loans, travel, admission for education, singing, acting, beauty therapies, wearing ornaments, sexual union and selling something. 
  • Mridu/Maitri Or Tender/Gentle/Friendly: Mrigashirsha, Chitra, Anuradha and also Revati are gentle nakshatras. The gentle Nakshatras are also good for entertainment, recreation, arts, auspicious ceremonies and meetings.  They are also suitable for all the acts that one does in fixed Nakshatras.
  • Tikshna/Daruna Or Sharp/Ferocious/Bitter: Ardra, Aslesha, Jyeshta and Moola are good for harmful and violent acts such as black magic, Tantra, sacrifices or other harmful, aggressive and deadly acts. 
  • Misra/Sadharan Or Mixed/Ordinary: Vishaka and Krittika are good for any activity that uses fire such as welding, boilers, furnaces, making medicines etc. 
Nakshatra Temperaments Connect The Tithi And Other Panchang Factors
Nakshatra Temperaments Connect The Tithi And Other Panchang Factors

Nakshatra Sight Directions

Nakshatras are also given directions that they ‘look’ at. This makes them suitable or unsuitable for certain acts.

  • Adhomukha (Facing Downward): Moola, Aslesha, Vishaka, Krittika, Purvaphalguni, Purvashada, Purvabhadrapada, Bharani as well as Magha. These Nakshatras are good for digging foundations, wells, mining and also other downward-facing acts. 
  • Urdhavamukha (Facing Upward): Ardra, Pushya, Shravana, Dhanishta, Satabishak, Uttaraphalguni, Uttarashada, Uttarabhadrapada as well as Rohini. These stars are good for auspicious acts, construction, laying of foundation, worship, planting as well as other things that have to grow upwards.
  • Triyangamukha (Facing Forward): Revati, Chitra, Mrigashirsha, Anuradha, Hasta, Swati, Punarvasu, Ashwini and Jyeshta are good for journeys, visiting friends and also other forward-facing acts. 

Other Nakshatra Characteristics

No.NakshatraDeityAnimalSymbolSound/Syllable
1AshwiniAshwini KumarMale HorseHorse HeadChu, Che, Cho, La
2BharaniYamaFemale ElephantYoniLee, Lu, Lay, Lo
3KrittikaAgniFemale GoatRazorAa, Ee, Oo, Ay
4RohiniBrahmaMale SnakeChariotO, Va, Vi, Vu
5MrigashirshaChandraFemale SnakeDeer HeadVe, Vo, Ka, Kee
6ArdraRudraFemale DogTear DropKu, Ghaa, Kha, Cha
7PunarvasuAditiMale CatQuiverKay, Ko, Ha, Hee
8PushyaBrihaspatiMale GoatUdderHoo, He, Ho, Dah
9AshleshaNagasFemale CatSerpentDee, Doo, Day, Doh
10MaghaPitrisFemale RatThroneMa, Mi, Mu, Me
11PurvaphalguniBhagaFemale CowHammockMo, Ta, Tee, Too
12UttaraphalguniAryamanFemale RatFig TreeTay, To, Pa, Pee
13HastaSuryaMale BuffaloHandPu, Sha, Nu, Tha
14ChitraVishwakarmaFemale TigerJewelPe, Po, Ra, Re
15SwatiVayuFemale BuffaloCoralRu, Re, Ro, Ta
16VishakhaIndraFemale TigerArchTi, Tu, Te, To
17AnuradhaMitraMale DeerLotusNa, Ni, Nu, Nay
18JyeshtaIndraFemale DeerAmulet / UmbrellaNo, Ya, Yi, Yu
19MulaNirittiDogRootsYe, Yo, Bha, Bhe
20PurvashadhaVarunaFemale MonkeyFanBu, Dah, Bha, Dha
21UttarashadhaVishwadevasFemale MongooseTuskBe, Bo, Ja. Ji
22ShravanaVishnuMale MonkeyEarJu, Je, Jo, Gha
23DhanisthaVasusLionDrumGa, Gi, Gu, Ge
24ShatabhishakVarunaHorse1000 StarsGo, Sa, Si, Su
25PurvabhadrapadaAjaekapadaMale LionFuneral CotSe, So, De, Di
26UttarabhadrapadaAhirbudhanyaMale CowWater SnakeDu, Tha, Jha, Na
27RevatiPushanFemale ElephantFishDe, Tho, Cha, Chi