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Columbia space shuttle disaster and Ashtakvarga

Shyaam Sunder Kansal

CAPE CANAVERAL, Jan. 16, 2003 -- Two years behind schedule, the shuttle Columbia rocketed into space, kicking off a 16-day science mission featuring more than 80 experiments and a host of animal research subjects. With its three main engines at full throttle, Columbia's solid-fuel boosters ignited with a ground-shaking roar at 10:39 a.m., instantly pushing the spacecraft away from pad 39A at the Kennedy Space Center.

On the orbiter's flight deck were commander Rick Husband, pilot William McCool, flight engineer Kalpana Chawla and physician David Brown. Strapped in on Columbia's lower deck were physician Laurel Clark, payload commander Michael Anderson and Israeli air force Col. Ilan Ramon.

If all went well, Columbia was to return to Earth on Feb. 1. BUT ALAS! The space shuttle Columbia disintegrated early on the morning of Feb.1, 2003, over north-central Texas while returning from its successful mission .

Here is an analysis of space-shuttle's launch-chart, through Ashtakvarga method of Vedic astrology. Following is the
natal chart casted for it's launch time:

 16th January, 2003 at 10:39 am (EST) 
Cape Canaveral FL (28N24’20;  80W36’18)

[The above chart has been casted using Chitrapakshiya Ayanamsa]

If we analyze this chart with the help of Ashtakvarga, we get following basic information:

  • Sun was with 3 points in the Kakshya of Saturn (an “Adhi Shatru" or "Bitter enemy" of Sun). However, Saturn is also one of the contributor of those benefic points.

  • Moon was with 4 points in the Kakshya of Mars (a “Shatru” or "Enemy" of Moon) and Mars is not one of the contributor of those benefic points.

  • Mars is in the Kakshya of Jupiter (“Sama” or "Neutral" to the Mars) with 4 points, but again Jupiter is a non-contributor of a benefic point.

  • Mercury is in the Kakshya of Mercury itself (“Swaa” or "Own") with 7 points and it is a contributor too of one of the benefic points.

  • Jupiter is in the Kakshya of Mercury (an “Adhi Shatru” or "Bitter enemy" of Mercury) and a non-contributor too of a benefic point.

  • Venus is with 4 points in the Kakshya of Venus itself (“Swaa” or "Own") and it is a contributor too of one of the benefic points.

  • Saturn is with 3 points in the Kakshya of Ascendant and it is a contributor also of one of the benefic points.

To summarize the above basic information, we see that out of the seven luminaries, 2 planets (Sun and Saturn) are below par with less than 4 Ashtakvarga points. Three planets are just at par with 4 points (Moon, Mars and Venus).

Only two planets (Mercury and Jupiter) have more than 4 points. But then Jupiter is placed in the Kakshya of an “Adhi Shatru” (bitter enemy) and that too is a non-contributor of those points.

Thus, total three planets (Moon, Mars and Jupiter) are in the Kakshyas of a non-contributor. Two planets (Sun and Jupiter) are posited in the Kakshyas of an “Adhi Shatru” (bitter enemy) and one planet (Moon) is placed in the Kakshya of a “Shatru” (enemy).

Now, ask any student of Ashtakvarga – he will immediately tell that this horoscope is a doomed one.

Now, let us see the degrees of planets. Three planets, out of seven planets, are situated in “Mrituansh” (or, the degrees of death). I have very rarely seen so many planets posited in fatal degrees in a single horoscope.

Sun in Capricorn at 02:11:36
Mercury in Sagittarius at 21:27:19
Rahu in Taurus at 13:55:19

I hope, readers are well versed with the “Mrituansh” (the fatal degrees). At the time of birth (time of Columbia’s Launch) and also at the time of accident -- “Rahu-Jupiter-Rahu” vimsottari dasa was running. Rahu is already in fatal degrees and Jupiter is placed in the Kakshya of a non-contributing bitter enemy. Was still  there any hope, from an astrologer’s point of view, that Columbia will safely complete it's journey?

Now see the Ashtakvarga position of this horoscope at the time of disaster (Feb. 1st, 2003 at 09:00 AM EST).

* Out of seven planets, five planets (Sun, Moon, Mars, Mercury, Jupiter) were transiting in the Kakshyas of a non-contributing planet. Out of these five, Mercury and Jupiter was in the Kakshyas of an “Adhi Shatru” (bitter enemy). Another two planets (Moon and Mars) were in the Kakshyas of a “Shatru” (enemy).

* Three planets were transiting in weak signs (with 25 points in SAV); three planets were transiting in just moderate signs (with 29 points in SAV) and only Saturn was transiting in a sign with 30 points in SAV (just slightly above par).

* Rahu was still in the “Mrituansh” at the time of disaster.

Three  malefics were in "Evil" Nakshatras:

Ashtakvarga method prescribes a system in which Sarvaashtak totals of various signs are summed from Ascendant to the position of malefics in natal chart (both signs included). This sum is multiplied by  7 and product divided by 27. The remainder shows the asterism (from Ashwini), which itself or its trines, when transited by malefics brings misfortune and other afflictions to the native. Applying the above mentioned method, we get the following results:

Mars and Ketu was in “Anuradha”

Saturn was in “Mrigshira”

Both these Nakshatra are “evil” nakshatras for the above horoscope, as decided by above mentioned Ashtakvarga method.

I hope, NASA will take cue from this analysis and shall try to fix launch dates and return dates of future space missions taking help of Vedic Astrology.

Authored by:

Shyaam Sunder Kansal

[To know more about the author click here]

(February 2nd, 2003)

Text:  Default font : Arial, Black, size: 11 

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