Nine planets in Vedic Astrology
Vedic Astrology recognizes nine planets. The nine planets Sun, Moon, Mars, Mercury, Jupiter, Venus, Saturn, Rahu, Ketu form the backbone of the vedic astrology. Combined with their placements in twelve signs/rashis and their relationship with other planets, the results of their effects on human life is calculate. For example some planets are good while others are bad. Bad planets do not generally do good during their Dasa/Bukthi period. When a good planets conjoins other good planet the result will be good. Otherwise there will be misfortunes and failures in the department represented by the planet. Prediction of based on the Karakatwa (significance) of the planet. For example of primary karakatwa of planet Jupiter is children and child birth. Using Jupiters placement and strength of 5th house and 5th lord we can determine whether one will get a child.
Some planets are male while others are female or eunuch. Each planet rules two signs of the zodiac while sun and moon rule only one sign. There is no own house for Rahu and ketu. Each planet get exalted (ucha) at certain degree of the zodiac. An exalted planet is generally considered good and strong and expected to give good results. Planets get debilitated (neecha) at 180 degree (or seventh house) from the point of its exaltation. For example the Moon is exalted at Rishiba/Taurus. It gets debilitated at Vrischika/Scorpio. Another important characteristic planets is aspects. Each planet aspect 7th house/bhava/sign from the house it occupies. For example if sun occupies Simha/Leo in a horoscope the sun aspects Makara/Capricorn sign and the planets occupied in that sign. Mars, Jupiter and Saturn got additional special aspects. Mars aspects 4th, 7th and 8th house. Jupiter aspects 5th, 7th and 9th house. Saturn aspect 3rd, 7th and 10th house. Aspects are very important in predicting results. Bad/evil aspect like that of saturn will do harm to the house. For example saturns aspect on 7th house is not good for married life. However aspects of benefic/good planet is always welcome. Jupiter's aspect on any house will make that house strong.
There is also ten sub-planets or Upagrahas recognized by vedic astrology. These are certain mathematical points which are of particular significance in Vedic astrology. These points do not have any physical existence. They, however, function as minor grahas or sub-planets. The Gulikadi Group consists of five sub planets namely Gulika or Mandi, Yamakantaka, Mrityu, Kaala or Kaalavela, Ardhprahara. The Dhoomadi Group consists of Dhooma, Vyatipata, Parivesha, Inderchepa and Ketu/Upaketu. The calculation and effects of these sub-planets will be dealt with in a seperate article.