I always thought that astrology was like a fortune cookie – so general that anyone who opens it can relate to the message that’s there. But when I started learning Ayurveda, the Science of Life, I learned that Vedic Astrology (Jyotish) is part of the science, so I decided to get a reading for fun. Why not?!

The astrologer asked me for my date of birth, time of birth, place of birth, and dates of three significant life events. I walked into the reading completely not expecting anything out of it. Just fun fortune cookie stuff.

But as he began talking, I was completely blown away. He knew EVERYTHING about me and my life. Things that I thought were random occurrences and whims that “I decided” to do at different periods of my life were, according to my reading, things that were extremely influenced so to say.

It took me months to process that life choices I thought I was deciding and doing were actually influenced by the planets. And I kept being surprised over and over again as the predictions the astrologer mentioned for me in the future ended up coming true – some of them that made no sense to me at the time!

I can understand how what we eat or the weather can easily have a direct influence on our mood for example, but that something so remote as the stars and planets can have such a strong influence was definitely not something I could easily process.

But let’s take one simple example: the Moon.

High tides and low tides are caused by the Moon. The Moon’s gravitational pull generates something called the tidal force. The tidal force causes Earth—and its water—to bulge out on the side closest to the Moon and the side farthest from the Moon. These bulges of water are high tides.


So here we see a very simple example of how a celestial body, the Moon, in this case, has a very powerful influence on the waters of the Earth. We can then easily logic that if we’re made of ~70% water, then the Moon easily influences us as well.

With similar logic, we can obviously see how the Sun influences us as well:

“Nothing is more important to us on Earth than the Sun. Without the Sun’s heat and light, the Earth would be a lifeless ball of ice-coated rock. The Sun warms our seas, stirs our atmosphere, generates our weather patterns, and gives energy to the growing green plants that provide the food and oxygen for life on Earth.”


We depend on the energy of the Sun for our life! If there is too much sun, we get dehydrated and hot and could even die. If too little, we could freeze to death.

So if the Moon & Sun influence us in such a big way, from all the way above in the universe, it is after all possible that the other planets, Mars, Jupiter, Saturn, Venus, Mercury do as well.

I was so impressed by Vedic Astrology, I couldn’t wait to take a class on it and keep learning. The more I learn and observe the patterns and how they influence me, the more I learn to let go of the details and focus on the bigger picture. If I’m going through a hard period, it’s still hard, but I know that this is temporary until the hard planets let go and more favorable ones take over.

But the big question remains. If the events in my life and my actions are so highly influenced, they are almost predetermined, why am I even here?

In that first reading, the wise astrologer started by saying that while we are influenced by the planets in what happens and what we do, free will is in how we react to these events.

With the help of Eastern Philosophy, I’m learning to look at myself beyond just being a computerized reaction to my environment but to the part of me that is beyond that. It’s not an easy journey, but one of the most important ones worth taking.

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