Placement: 26° 40’ of Aries to 10° 00’ of Taurus
Element: Earth (Bhumi)
Pushkara Navamsha/Bhaga: 1st and 4th pada/NA
Krittika is the third nakshatra which combines the energy of Sun, Mars, and Moon. Lord Kartikeya was raised and trained in this constellation to fight against a mighty demon and re-establish dharma on earth. The night sky in Krittika is adorned by a cluster of seven tightly packed stars known as Pleiades.
Ruler: Krittika is ruled by the Surya (Sun) and is considered to be of great significance in creation mythology. It is believed to be the seed of God Shiva and the origin of all creation. The meeting of the Sun, which represents fire and heat, and the Moon, which represents water, symbolizes the creation of life. This is further evidenced by the fact that Krittika starts in Aries, where the Sun is exalted, and ends in Taurus, where the Moon is exalted. Moon gets its maximum exaltation in Krittika.
Deity: Krittika is ruled by the deity Agni, who is the God of fire. Protection and motherly nourishment, which fall under the domain of the Moon, are the central themes of this nakshatra. Krittika is one of two nakshatras presided over by Lord Agni, the other being Vishakha. Lord Kartikeya, the commander of Godly forces and the son of Lord Shiva, is also associated with this nakshatra. According to mythology, he was born from the fire that emanated from Shiva's third eye, which produced six sparks that led to the birth of six children. The births of these children were kept secret, as their purpose was to defeat the demon king Surapadma. They were sent away to be raised and taught by six foster mothers known as the "Krittika women," after which Mother Parvati united the children into one body with six heads, hence his name "six-faced" or "Arumugan." Kartikeya is generally depicted as young, good-looking, and dressed as a warrior, carrying a spear shaped like an arrow. Other names associated with him include Sharavana, Murugan, Skanda, and Subramanya.
Krittika means "critical," its Sanskrit meaning is "most beautiful." It also has another meaning, which is "cutter" or "splitter."
Symbol: Krittika's symbolism is represented by fire and a sharp object, which can also be associated with Mars (Mangal), as Mars is the significator of "fire and sharp objects". This nakshatra starts from the sign of Aries (from 26° 40’ to 30° 00’), which is ruled by Mars. Hence, there is a strong connection with the Sun and Mars throughout. Sharp objects and fire can be used to protect or harm someone. Similarly, this nakshatra can act as both a protector and destroyer.
Animal: The animal associated with Krittika nakshatra is the female goat, which is the mount of Lord Agni. The peacock is the bird associated with this nakshatra, which is the mount of Lord Kartikeya.
Guna: This nakshatra is considered to be Rajasic, as it is associated with consistent and active pursuits, with a particular focus on technical skills and knowledge, more so than the previous nakshatras.
Power: This nakshatra is associated with the power of "Dahana Shakti", which refers to the ability to purify through burning or heating.
General Attributes: Krittika nakshatra is associated with the attributes of protection and destruction, as well as nurturing abilities, education, warrior attitude, bravery, and skills through constant burning of energy. Individuals born under this nakshatra can exhibit both protective and destructive tendencies, and are known to strongly defend their beliefs and habits. They possess a combination of strength and tenderness and may have a close relationship with their father or father figures/Gurus. However, it is important to note that these are general qualities and individual traits may vary.
Karthigai Deepam: Karthigai Deepam is an annual Hindu festival of Tamilnadu, South India, that is celebrated on the day of Krittika nakshatra in the month of Karthikai. The festival is celebrated to honor the origin of creation. People celebrate this festival by lighting diyas (oil lamps) at home, as fire/heat is believed to be the origin of all creation.