The planet Mars is known as 'Mangal'.
We have seen in the previous post the association of the Mangal star with Moon giving rise to 'Kudai Mangalam'.
This refers to the Full moon and in particular the Chithra pourNami.
The Full moon resembles a cosmic umbrella covering the entire earth with its cool light,
looking as though it is protecting the entire mankind with cool and pleasant light.
It is for this reason, (according the Sangam texts), the kings maintain a Royal umbrella. (veN kottra-k-kudai)
The God is the King of Kings and therefore He is always accompanied with a Royal Umbrella in his outings.
This Umbrella signifies protection, coolness, pleasantness and happiness to the people.
It is significant to note that the Kudai Mangalam, a division (thurai) mentioned by Tholkaappiyam referring to Chithra pourNami
occurs with moon in the Martian star of Chitthra
in the constellation of Venus (signifactor of spouse), the 7th house (KaLatthra-sthaan)
in the Natural zodiac that starts from Aries!
The implied meaning is that of protection to the married couple by the Umbrella of the Zodiac!
This is further reinforced by the practices in ancient Tamil lands,
where the Indra Vizha and Kaaman Vizha (Festival of Love-God) were associated with Chitthra pourNami!
The Kaaman vizha ended just before Chitthra pourNami
and Indra vizha started on Chithra pourNami.
Indra Vizha was a time for honey-moon for the newly weds – Indra denoting the Indriyas or senses.
We read about these two in Silappadhikaram.
The inference is that Mangal- moon connection is associated with marriage!
Moon and Mangal if found together anywhere in the zodiac are said to indicate
'Chandra-mangala yOga' – also known as "Maangalya yOga".
The mutual aspect from degrees 180 apart from each other also bestows this Maangalya yOga.
The best form of Maangalya yOga is when moon exalts in Taurus (a constellation of Venus – indicator of love and wife)
and Mars is in its own house in Scorpio.
Another best combination is when moon is in its own house in Cancer and Mars is in its exaltation in Capricorn.
But if Mars goes to the house of Moon and moon moves to the house of Mars in Scorpio,
that is the worst case of debility, for,
moon debilitates in Martian sign (Scorpio) and Mars debilitates in Moon sign (Cancer)!
This kind of peculiar relationship exists between the two.
What could be the rationale of this debility when these mangal-ensuring planets occupy each other's house?
It is because, Scorpio happens to be the Maaraka-sthaan (house of death) of the spouse
(The 7th house is for spouse.
The 2nd from the 7th house is 8th which is maaraka sthaan for the spouse.
This is Scorpio in the Natural zodiac)
When moon debilitates in the maaraka-sthaan of the spouse, the wife's Mangalam or auspiciousness is in jeopardy.
Likewise if Mars debilitates in Cancer, which is the 4th house of 'sukha' and comforts, the native's happiness is at stake.
The above mentioned Mangalya yOga will confer mangalam only when it occurs in the
2nd house of family, 9th house of Bhaagyam, 10th house of Karma and the 11th house of Laabha (profits).
This means Mangalya yOga will be conferred only in these signs that stand for wealth and prosperity of the couple in marriage.
When this yOga occurs in these houses the man will be of good character having respect and adoration for his wife and
will lead an auspicious and happy life with her.
If this yOga occurs in other signs, particularly in unfavorable houses, the opposite trend happens.
In that case, the man would even sell his wife! He will have scant regard for character. (1)
(Disclaimer:- Readers are requested to view this as a general reading and are advised not to apply this to individual horoscopes.
A further application of this to individuals must be co-read with other indicators in the horoscope)
By this it is meant that Mars – Moon combination plays a crucial role in matrimony.
That is why the 'Mangal dosha' comes under scrutiny.
Since Mars signifies the house of death of the spouse, that house (8th from the girl's) comes to be regarded as 'Maagalya sthaan'.
That this 8th house has an impact on any auspicious event is further confirmed by
a non-compromisable stipulation on 'ashtama shuddhi' in fixing the muhurtha for any auspicious event.
Ashtama shuddhi means that the 8th house from muhurtha lagna must be clean.
It must be free of evil aspects.
If an event has to happen without hindrances, ashtama shuddhi must be there.
If an event must give rise to happy and auspicious results, then ashtama shuddhi must be there.
The widely prevalent practice of having marriage function on the day of Rohini
goes well with moon in exaltation aspecting the 8th house of Mangalyam in the natural zodiac.
Thus the Mangal planet occupies an important place in deciding the course and outcome of an event!
In this connection we will further explore why Mars came to be regarded as 'Mangal' or for auspiciousness
while his own nature is that of a malefic in jyothisha sastra.
Mars became Mangal because of the connection with
none other than the so-called celibate God Ganesha!
Shiva Purana describes (so too other texts that sprang in the last 1000 years) (2)
the marriage of Ganesha which is highly symbolic.
Ganesha wins his brother Karthikeya in a competition by showing that
circumambulating the parents is akin to going round the earth many times.
In other words, this means that if one understands the glory of parents,
one is said to have understood the ways of the world
without even having to go round the world to get a first hand experience.
As a result of this demonstration of wisdom and winning the competition,
Ganesha was married to Siddhi and Buddhi.
These two are in fact Success and Wisdom
and a person endowed with these two is said to enjoy complete blessings of Maha laskhmi
because Maha lakshmi signifies these two. (3)
The result of these two are
Kshema (prosperity) and Laabha (benefits)
who are described as the children of Ganesha from these two consorts.
The import of all this is that a wise person will be successful and
will beget prosperity and profits due to his wisdom and success.
(It must be recalled here that in his Phala sruti on Ramayana, Kavi Valmiki has said that
gods like Vinayaka will stay in the house where Ramayana is recited. (4)
From the above symbolism of Vinayaka, it is understood that Lakshmi Kataaksham – in the form of Siddhi and Buddhi –
and kshema and laabha will be experienced by the person who recites Ramayana. )
The information for our analysis on Maangalya dharanam is that
the planet Mars who witnessed this marriage of Ganesha
was immersed with auspiciousness of the Mangal Vinayaka
in company of Siddhi and Buddhi
That is how the planet got its name as "Mangal" (5)
It is described in Vinayaka Purana that
Lord Ganesha who was in his auspicious form as Siddhi Vinayaka and
adorning an auspicious colour of red,
bestowed the same auspiciousness to Mars who witnessed Him in that form.
Mars which is basically a malefic planet
thus came to get auspiciousness
and also became capable of giving auspiciousness.
It must also remembered that Mangal stands for red color
and red is the color of auspiciousness.
The Sindhoor adorning the forehead of married women is red in color!
We have seen from previous posts that
auspiciousness has always been associated with marriage and married couple.
In days of yore when Dharma was held high and misdeeds were very less,
the baggage of previous bad karma was also less.
There were rare instances of marriages in mishap.
Marriage which is a dharma by itself was blissful then.
There were not many misfortunes in a marriage.
A couple united in an auspicious hour remained united for long.
The only trouble they faced was from diseases.
This was indicated by the 'naadi' of the couple.
Naadi is about the kind of basal element that is predominant in a person's body.
The medical science of Ayur veda treats patients on the basis of 5 naadis only.
But the 5 nadis were further fine-tuned to 3 naadis
and the 27 stars of the zodiac were found to be indicative of the 3 naadis, namely,
Vaata, pittha and Sleshma.
This Naadi can be detected by the holding the wrist
as how doctors of today feel the pulse.
If a man and a woman belonging to the same naadi were married,
it was found not to ensure longevity.
Moreover the progeny from such a couple was found to be ailing.
All olden astrological texts have assigned highest importance
to this naadi koota and assigned the highest score of 8 to this.
If naadi-p-poruttham was not there, the marriage was not done.
When naadi-p-poruttham was not there,
it meant that one of them will die early!
It is perhaps for this reason, the earliest practice was to tie a 'kangaN'
around the wrists of both the bride and the groom.
This is done even before the couple are brought to the wedding Mantap.
Rama and Sita had this done to them. (refer part - 1 )
The marriages described in early Tamil texts also mention this. (refer part - 2 )
It is perhaps due to this,
the bangles were given importance in marriage and for the married woman.
When the husband dies, it is like losing the 'naadi' and so the bangles are lost.
This custom still continues in the north.
The 'KankaNa bandhan' is a main ritual in many sects in North.
The wrists of the couple were tied at the beginning of the marriage ceremony
as though their Naadis were united.
This custom is still prevalent among Bengalis and Punjabis.
The Biharis and others surrounding that state
still have this kankan ritual as a main ritual-
something like that of the kankan ceremony that
Rama and Sita had in their marriage.
But the Naadi-p-poruttham lost its significance when times changed.
Times changed in such a way that disease no longer
was the cause of separation of the couple in marriage.
There were misfortunes of other types that separated the couple!
Such misfortunes happened with invasions and in wars!
Mars, the Lord of Military prowess and warring tendencies
had to be looked into to know
whether the prospective groom will live long.
Also since Mars is a Mangal planet,
he can not be ignored for ensuring auspiciousness.
It is perhaps for this reason, the recital of Ganesha Mangalashtakam
is done in many communities (particularly the Gujaratis)
before starting the main ritual of wedding. (6)
Mangal Ganapthi is prayed with Mangalashtakam.
The auspiciousness of Mangal planet is also thus prayed for.
The Mangal dosha in the horoscope was meticulously analyzed for proper matching
so that the couple can live longer.
And astrology too came to re-structure its Koota- matching or
Naadi-p-poruttham was no longer given importance.
Its place has now been taken over by Rajju-p-poruttham!
Yes, we can not find Rajju-p-poruttham in olden texts.
Rajju is a later addition.
The worst part of rajju is formed by the stars lorded by Mars,
namely Mrigashira, Chitthra and Avittam.
They signify ShirO rajju – a danger to the head.
A faulty rajju signifies death to the man.
There is no compromise with this rajju.
Rajju means 'rope'
What is this rope?
A rope that protects the life of the partner?
Or the rope that Yama throws to pull the life out of the partner?
But the wisdom of Sanathan dharma is that of finding ways
to avoid even the worst mishap.
The wisdom resulted in strengthening the marriage
by additional rituals done in proper times.
In this connection we are drawn to look into a ritual called the 'kaaradaiyaan nOnbu'
This nOnbu is done with a prayer for longevity of the husband, by replacing the mangal sutra or thaali!
When Mangalya dharanam itself was not a part of the culture in the past,
a question arises how this nOnbu could have come into existence.
'Kaaradaiyaan nOnbu' is the only occasion when the Mangal sutra is re-tied
every year – year after year -
The timing of this nOnbu is impregnated with a lot astrological meanings
peculiar to Mars, the Mangal planet.
This nOnbu is done in the foot steps of Savitthri
who went after Yama to get back her husband Satyavaan.
The timing of this nOnbu holds the next key in unraveling the secrets of
Mangalya dharanam in Hindu weddings.
(To be continued)
(1) 'Three hundred important combinations' by Dr BV Raman (p 25)
Sidhi budhi pradhe devi,
Bhakthi mukthi pradayinee,
Manthra moorthe, sada devi,
Maha Lakshmi Namosthuthe.
Salutations and salutations to Goddess Mahalakshmi,
Who grants intelligence and occult powers,
Who grants devotion to God and salvation,
Who can be personified by holy chants,
And who is Goddess for ever.
From Mahalakshmi ashtakam verse 4
(4) Valmiki Ramayana, Yuddha Khandam -131 -114 "Vinaayakaas cha saamyanthi gruhE thishtanthi"
"Mangalam thigazh kaatchi naam vandharuL vanappaal, thanguvaiyagam Mangalan yena unnai-ch-chaattrum" – "Since you have seen my auspicious form (in this marriage) the world would henceforth call you as Mangal" Lord Ganesha to Mars in Vinayaka Purana.
From 'Deva-p-peyar thoguthi' on Mars in Choodamani nigandu