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Sri Yukteswar about Astrology

In the autobiography, Paramahansa Yogananda recounts an interesting discussion with his Guru Sri Yukteswar regarding astrology while he was at his Ashram.

Sri Yukteswar suggests to Yogananda to wear an astrological armlet. But Yogananda tells him that he does not believe in astrology.

Then Yukteswar explains to him - the basis of astrology and how we should understand astrology. Here is a summary and explanation of his points. This discussion can be read in The autobiography of a yogi.

Astrology is not a matter of faith, it is like a scientific principle that can be compared to law of gravity.

The basis of astrology is the inter link between all creation - planets as living beings as well as the five elements - earth, water, fire, air and ether (Akash).

A human being needs to counter two kinds of forces - (a) forces inside him, basically his body and especially his mind (b) external environment formed by five elements including the planets.

Astrology is the study of interaction between human being and his external environment (that is primarily planets). Because of the various forces of attraction and repulsion in creation, a human being is subjected to planetary changes unless he goes above his human nature.

So a child is born at a time, which is aligned with his karmic nature. By observing the time, a true astrologist can understand the nature of the person and the challenges he/she is going to face in life due to karma.

But we have already seen that a human being needs to face two types of forces, one internal and one external. While external planets and other things can have an influence on us and we may not have direct control, we do have control over our internal forces, if desired. Once the human being knows how to control the inner nature, he/she can come out of the outer or astrological influences.

In other words, it is not just fate, but it is possible to create our own destiny.

We are actually a soul along with a body. So when we raise our consciousness to realize even a part of our higher nature, it is possible to escape from external influences.

If we believe in astrology without this complete understanding, it becomes a blind belief or superstition. The greatest protection from karmic and astrological influences comes by simply working on ourselves through meditation and raising our consciousness.

After this, Sri Yukteswar explains that metals being the part of external environment can also nullify some of the planetary influences and so he suggested wearing the astrological armlet. Yogananda does wear it eventually and is protected from the bad effect of a major illness later. You can read the full story in Chapter 16 of the Autobiography of a Yogi.

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