Placement: 20°00’ of Aquarius to 03° 20’ of Pisces
Element: Ether (Space/Akash)
Pushkara Navamsha/Bhaga: 2nd and 4th pada/NA
Purva Bhadrapada is a unique nakshatra with two stars representing two distinct sides. It is situated in the constellation of Pegasus, which in Western mythology symbolizes politics, conspiracies, and big secrets capable of toppling entire governments. In Vedic astrology, Purva Bhadrapada lies at the end of Aquarius, the natural 11th house, signifying the highest hopes, wishes, and expectations.
This nakshatra builds a bridge between Aquarius and Pisces, representing the final stage of everything and the beginning of out-of-the-world imaginations and experiences, respectively. Aquarius represents humanity's best minds, endeavors, and technology, marking the maximum happiness and maximum sadness, the best of both worlds. Pisces, on the other hand, represents the start of an unexplored realm of creativity and possibilities.
Bridging these two signs is a profound experience in and of itself, as it enables individuals to access the highest of hopes and out-of-the-world imaginations. Purva Bhadrapada thus has a significant impact on an individual's personality and outlook towards life.
Ruler: Guru (Jupiter) is the planetary ruler of Purva Bhadrapada, renowned for being the most benevolent and bringing good fortune. Being the final nakshatra ruled by Jupiter, it is considered the luckiest of them all. It signifies the peak of all materialistic accomplishments and denotes the realm of the unknown. Jupiter is the only planet that can navigate the uncharted territory without losing balance. It is the only planet in our solar system that has colossal storms that are thrice the size of Earth, yet it remains perfectly balanced.
Symbolism: This nakshatra is symbolized by the "front legs of a funeral cot," which resembles an exit or an end. This symbolizes the end of everything that we know, as previously mentioned. Additionally, the "sword" is another symbol of this nakshatra, which represents a permanent cut or end.
Animal: The animal associated with this nakshatra is the lion, which is also the mount of the fierce form of Goddess Shakti known as Durga. According to Puranas, Durga defeated the demon Mahishasura, who had a buffalo head and was attempting to destroy the universe. The verses of Mahishasura Mardini describe this in great detail. Lions are known for their immense power and energy, although they typically do not display it, much like the planet Jupiter. The lion is also associated with Surya (the Sun), highlighting the connection between these two celestial bodies. As a result, the energy of this nakshatra is incredibly intense, requiring tremendous patience and balance to contain.
The story of Sage Vishwamitra comes to mind when contemplating the energy of Purva Bhadrapada. During his rigorous penance to become the Brahma Rishi, Sage Vishwamitra stood on one foot (Ekapada asana) for an extended period. It was the most intense penance of all, but it helped him confront and overcome his inner demons such as Kama (lust), Krodha (anger), Lobha (greed), Moha (attachment), Mada (pride) and Matsarya (jealousy), also known as Shadripu. As he was a former king and materialistic, this penance was necessary to free himself from these vices and attain the state of Brahma Rishi, the sage of sages. Similarly, Purva Bhadrapada embodies the energy that impels one to relinquish the familiar and seek a higher and better existence. The lion, the animal associated with this nakshatra and the vehicle of Goddess Durga, adds to the intensity of its energy, requiring enormous patience and balance to contain it.
Deity: The ruling deity of Purva Bhadrapada nakshatra is Aja Ekapada, one of the eleven Rudras who has one body with twin heads, also called "twin headed dragon". Rudra is a form of Shiva, created to bring an end to something in order to transform it into something new. In Vedic texts, Shiva is referred to as the inertia while Goddess Parvati is the energy, and it is believed that Shiva accomplishes everything through his Shakti or Parvati. However, when there is a dire need, Shiva creates Rudras as a different embodiment of his energy. Aja Ekapada is depicted in various forms in scriptures, and one of the popular depictions is the one where Shiva has only one leg, with Lord Brahma and Vishnu emerging out of his leg on either side. This form represents the ultimate state of Shiva, from whom everything emerges, including the holy trinity who then creates the universe. When the life of the universe is over, Shiva destroys the universe and pulls everything back inside him, including the trinity. Click to view the image of Ajaikapada.
In addition to its association with the deity Aja Ekapada, the word Aja has other meanings in Sanskrit, including "goat," which is used in various Vedic scriptures. The word Ekapada, on the other hand, means "single foot." With two stars in this nakshatra, we can interpret one star as representing the goat and the other as representing the foot. This symbolism is reminiscent of the goat-headed Baphomet of Western mythology, who is often depicted as the dark lord ruling the underworld. This imagery seems to align with the characteristics and themes of Purva Bhadrapada, as described earlier.
Aggression: While Sage Vishwamitra was able to endure the intense energy of Purva Bhadrapada through his determination and willpower, most humans may not be able to handle it for too long. In fact, it can sometimes lead to negative reactions.
Inauspiciousness: You might question why it is regarded as one of the most unlucky nakshatras, even though it is deemed the luckiest one. The reason is that it embodies the best of both worlds - the best of goods and the worst of bads - duality on all levels. Therefore, it's best not to take any risks.
Guna: This nakshatra is considered sattvic, but with an emphasis on achieving its goals by any means necessary, even if it involves less than noble actions.
Power: This nakshatra represents the "Yajamana Udyamana Shakti" which means the power to elevate oneself through internal purification such as devotion, worship, and penance. It emphasizes the importance of spiritual practices in raising one's level of consciousness. General attributes: Individuals strongly influenced by Purva Bhadrapada may exhibit a dual nature in various aspects of their life. They may seem to have two different personalities residing within them, with their outer appearance contradicting their inner self. Such individuals tend to be introspective, always contemplating the bigger picture and looking beyond the surface level. They may immerse themselves in a subject, such as research, to find their sense of comfort. They are highly motivated to achieve their goals and will go to great lengths to accomplish them, similar to how Sage Vishwamitra stood on one foot to attain his goal of becoming a Brahma Rishi. However, their desperate drive to achieve their goals may often lead them towards destructive tendencies. Going beyond the natural course for an extended period, whether it be self-destruction or violent actions towards others, is the law of nature. This extreme duality is a hallmark of Purva Bhadrapada, where on one hand, it may lead to the emergence of great saints, and on the other hand, it may result in extreme violence. It is important to note that these are general qualities, and each individual may exhibit different tendencies.
Remedy: One powerful remedy for the strong influence of this nakshatra is to meditate on the picture of Sri Ramakrishna Paramahansa, a revered sadhu from the 19th century who was a devoted worshipper of Goddess Kali. Additionally, since this nakshatra is associated with Goddess Durga, reciting the Durga mantra and participating in Durga Puja/Navaratri celebrations can also be highly beneficial. If one has Rahu in this nakshatra, they can worship Goddess Durga during Rahu Kaal on Tuesdays and Fridays, as Durga is believed to be the presiding deity of Lord Rahu. Maintaining a strong spiritual practice is crucial for those with the intense energy of this nakshatra, as it requires a strong spirit to balance its wild nature.
Religious importance: Every year in Tamilnadu, South India, the month of Maasi falls between February and March, during the transit of the Sun through the constellation Aquarius. This month is significant for religious festivals such as Maha Shivaratri and Maasi Magam, which are celebrated in Chidambaram, the holy city of Lord Nataraja temple.