By: Gordon Brennan
The chart below is of Mary Shelley. The box at top right in the diagram is Gemini, her ascendant, and the signs of the zodiac and 12 houses run clockwise from there. In 1797 when Mary Shelley was born the difference in planetary positions between Western and Vedic Astrology was 21 degrees, so the usual 2 degree Cancer ascendant minus 21 degrees converts to 11 degrees Gemini. This gives the visible astronomical positions for the ascendant and planets at the time of birth and allows many insights not available in Western Astrology.
Birth with 8th lord Saturn in the ascendant aspecting the 2nd lord Moon in the 7th house shows both a difficult birth and possibility of the death of the mother. This is confirmed by the powerful Mercury in 4th. He is a benefic of course, but strong in the 4th house he is particularly dangerous. 4th house is the house of mother of course. Saturn is not all bad and birth with 9th lord Saturn in the ascendant emphasises the burden of fatherly responsibility. Sun representing father is also well placed in Leo, its own sign and aspects the 9th house. In Vedic Astrology 9th house represents father as parent and guardian. 10th house is only as husband of mother.
Her father described her at fifteen as “singularly bold, somewhat imperious, and active of mind. Her desire of knowledge is great, and her perseverance in everything she undertakes almost invincible”. This fits the chart perfectly and so would be one of the ways to confirm that the birth time is fairly accurate. It may seem that you can not get much bolder than to have Mars and Sun in Leo in the 3rd house of courage, and imperious as this is Leo, but in fact her Moon at 6 degrees 49 minutes of Sagittarius in the 7th house is also an example in Vedic Astrology of a precocious strong willed girl. Also Mercury and Venus in 4th house give a very strong, active mind. The Moon’s precise position in Sagittarius also gives a predisposition to writing and study, as that part of Sagittarius is related to Gemini. Mercury and Venus together in Virgo show the benefit of a very good education. She had a governess, a daily tutor, and read many of her father’s children’s books on Roman and Greek history in manuscript. She was also full of energy. Born on a Wednesday with exalted Mercury gives exceptional physical and mental energy.
The 9th house is related to travel and the 12th to foreign lands. Rahu is strong in Taurus and in Vedic Astrology he is considered as lord of 9th house Aquarius jointly with Saturn – just as Uranus would be in Western Astrology. This is a powerful incentive to go abroad and also to live there, which Mary Shelley did for some years, until the death of her husband. Venus, the ruler of Taurus, is debilitated in Virgo, but when it is with Mercury it recovers from this in some way. Leaving home – 4th house Virgo – to go abroad is shown in the chart, especially as Rahu aspects Virgo. Prominent 4th house matters happen very early in a person’s life.
Venus is called Kavi in Sanskrit, which means poet, but in Virgo Venus has to be more practical and so coupled with the brilliant Mercury this supports her gifted writing ability, shown by Mercury. She could write poetry, but would be inspired to express her thoughts in prose. The retrograde nature of Jupiter focuses it more on Virgo, which it aspects, and being 7th and 10th lord it determines her career.
She struggled financially for many years. Virgo is called her Arudha Lagna and if you have no planets in the 11th and 2 planets in the 12th from the Arudha Lagna your financial situation is precarious: expenses are high and income is patchy. Fortunately with 11th lord Mars and Sun in 3rd – both houses relating to friends – she had great faith in herself and her friends, so that carried her through many difficult times.
There are predictive time lines in Vedic Astrology called Dashas. The main system focuses on 120 years as the life period, as chapter 6 of the Book of Genesis in the Bible also states. Frankenstein was published in 1818. The concept for the novel is said to have come to Mary Shelley in a dream. Dreams are to do with 9th house and 12th house represents sleep. Rahu, also representing a monster, is 9th lord in 12th. The novel was written and published in Venus Mercury Dasha. Jupiter, the planet which governs dreams and sleep, aspects both Venus and Mercury, powerfully as it is retrograde.
Percy Shelley was lost at sea on or shortly after 8th July 1922. In this Dasha system his death took place in Sun Rahu Saturn Dasha of Mary Shelley’s chart. The more precise the time the more levels of Dasha can be used. The husband’s death is prefigured in the wife’s chart. Sun gives the possibility of the event, Rahu the experience of it and Saturn describes what happened. Sun in 3rd in Leo shows boldness, courage and absence of fear. Shelley and his companions went to sea despite foreknowledge of a storm and a likely difficult journey. Rahu is in the 10th house from the Sun, so Rahu is empowered – he is very strong in 10th house at any time. Rahu is also in the 12th house of the birth chart. 12th house represents loss and also 12th house, similarly to Pisces, represents the ocean. Both Rahu and Ketu can represent a storm in different ways. Saturn is in the second house from Rahu. Second house is called Maraka, which means indicating death. Saturn in the first house of the birth chart is also in a death like position for Saturn as a planet, as he hates being in the 1st house, and he is aspected by Jupiter, who is lord of Pisces, the ocean. Saturn also rules the 8th house and within the 8th, Capricorn is the principal indicator of marriage partner in this chart. Rahu involved as the nature of the experience shows shock. In addition to this you would also be able to see Ketu in Scorpio, the most dangerous sign for Capricorn, which relates to Mary Shelley’s husband, describing a boat on the water, aspected by Mars, showing physical danger. Mars does not protect from physical danger as he represents fire, which destroys everything. Ketu in Scorpio is in trine to Pisces and Pisces represents the ocean and in this chart is the precise sign describing the place of death of Mary Shelley’s husband. Trines show closely related matters. Moon, ruling Cancer, the other trine, is in Sagittarius and that would show that Percy Shelley fell from the boat into the sea.
This is how the whole life of a person can gradually be unfolded in Vedic Astrology.
All of the rules applied here are thousands of years old.
Gordon Brennan has studied Vedic Astrology for 20 years and is also qualified in Sanskrit, the language in which it was originally written down. He has a post graduate qualification in astrology from India called Jaimini Scholar and also is the committee member of the British Association for Vedic Astrology responsible for education. www.bava.org/education