Guna Milan - AshtaKoota for marriage
Why horoscope match?
Marriage has been considered a very sacred duty of human beings in India. It Involves an intimate link between two different individuals. Generally in India, amongst the traditional people, the two individuals involved in the act of marriage are strangers to each other, their union often having been arranged by their parents. There has been some change lately, particularly amongst the urban populace, so that the marrying couple meet, or often select, each other before being tied in wedlock.
The traditional Indian marriage being between two strangers, the ancient seers devised astrological methods to choose the right partner. This involves a process of matching of the horoscopes of the prospective bride and groom before getting them united in wedlock.
The methods of horoscopic matching involve different factors which aim to ensure a physical as well as a mental matching of the prospective partners, keeping in view the social system of those times. While the traditional techniques need to be applied in a modified manner in the changed soical ambience of today, they are still valid in a general sense. Even today more than 90 percent of Hindus have their horoscopes matched before getting married. In fact, the natal astrology in ancient India was primarily directed at marriage, progeny and Muhurta.
Horoscope Matching - Ashtakootas
Eight different "Kootas" (the Ashtakootas) are taken into consideration while matching the charts of the prospective bride and bridegroom. There are based on the sign and the nakshatra of the natal Moon in the charts of the couple. Thus its also called nakshatra match or star match or rashi porutham in Tamil.
These eight factors, which are successively stronger in effect and considered to be possesive of successively increasing "gunas" or benefic qualities, are as follows.
With Varna having one Guna and the successive Kootas possessing the number of gunas progressively increasing by one until Naadi possesses eight gunas, a maximum of thirty-six gunas are possible. When a horoscopic pair shows anything from 24 to 36 gunas, it is considered an excellent match. When the match shows 12 to 24 gunas, it is considered only mediocre; less than 12 is adverse and generally not recommended for marriage. Very strict adherence to these rules may not be necessary when the planetary disposition in both charts is otherwise favorable.