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A meeting with Dr. B.V.

Raman
(Article written in 1990) Dr. B. V. Raman has recently been appointed Honorary President of the Danish Association for Hindu Astrology. In this connection I would like to present him as I met him in Bangalore on the 1 th of !anuary 1""#. $ne week before our meeting I made an appointment with Dr. Raman on the phone% and my wife% &rlette '(rtler% and I were )ery e*cited and full of e*pectations% and naturally we wanted to make sure that we arri)ed at the meeting in due time. +e hired one of these yellow three,wheeled scooterlike autorickshaws% which are -uite common in the ma.or cities of India. It was a rather short trip according to the map% so we were -uite astonished when after one hour of dri)ing the dri)er suddenly said/ 0House is gone0. I became angry with this hopeless dri)er and said that would stop the first person passing by and pay him 1# rupies to show us the way. Dr. B.V. Raman is -uite a celebrity% so e)eryone ought to know him. 2his we did% and 1# minutes later we arri)ed at his place. It was -uite embarrassing to be 3# minutes late% but Dr. B. V. Raman recei)ed us at his house% 04ri Ra.eswari0% in a )ery kind manner. Astrology during childhood Bangalore Venkata Raman was born in an old% Brahmin family in the 5anataka 4tate in 4outh India on the 6th of &ugust 1"17. His mother died before he was two years old% and so the grandparents took care of his upbringing. 2his pro)ed to be his fortune% since his grandfather was no other than the )ery famous south Indian astrologer B. Suryanarain Rao. 4o in fact he was really brought up with astrology. 8ater on% as a grown up man% Dr. B. V. Raman took o)er the editing of his grandfathers monthly maga9ine% "The Astrological Magazine"% which is now distributed not only in India but almost worldwide. Besides this% Dr. B. V. Raman happens to be the author of more than 7# titles on Hindu astrology. I belie)e that his most well known book is 0Hindu redicti!e Astrology".

Mundane predictions Dr. B. V. Raman is e*tremely famous in India for his mundane political forecasts% which ha)e seldom failed. Because of this% I felt it -uite natural in !anuary 1""# to in-uire about the political changes in the communist countries. Dr. Raman told me that already in the middle of the :#ties he predicted all these e)ents on the basis of the horoscope of the ;44R% which is now running 4aturn period. His predictions at that time were that these changes were of a permanent character% and would mean the final end of communism. He also predicted the unification of 'ermany% but according to Dr. B. V. Raman the united 'ermany will not function properly until 1""<=1""3. He pointed out that the united 'ermany will ne)er again become a war threat. But on the other hand he said that there will be a serious war around 1""6=1""". Correspondence with C.G. Jung Dr. B. V. Raman has been tra)elling in >urope and the ;4&% and has been in connection with -uite a number of wellknown figures. ?ot only astrologers% but also philosophers and scientists. Dr. Raman has had a correspondence with the phycologist "arl #usta! $ung% and he permitted me to publish a letter that he recei)ed from !ung/ %usnacht&'ch.( Se)tem*er +th ,-./ D0AR R12. RAMA3(

4 ha!en5t yet recei!ed TH0 ASTR161#4"A6 MA#A'430( *ut 4 7ill ans7er your letter ne!ertheless. Since you 7ant to kno7 my o)inion a*out astrology 4 can tell you that 45!e *een interested in this )articular acti!ity of the human mind since more than 89 years. As 4 am a )sychologist( 4 am chiefly interested in the )articular light the horosco)e sheds on certain com)lications in the character. 4n cases of difficult )sychological diagnosis 4 usually get a horosco)e in order to ha!e a further )oint of !ie7 from an entirely different angle. 4 must say that 4 !ery often found that the astrological data elucidated certain )oints 7hich 4 other7ise 7ould ha!e *een una*le to understand. 2rom such e:)eriences 4 formed the o)inion that

astrology is of )articular interest to the )sychologist( since it contains a sort of )sychological e:)erience 7hich 7e call ")ro;ected" & this means that 7e find the )sychological facts as it 7ere in the constellations. This originally ga!e rise to the idea that these factors deri!e from the stars( 7hereas they are merely in a relation of synchronicity 7ith them. 4 admit that this is a !ery curious fact 7hich thro7s a )eculiar light on the structure of the human mind. <hat 4 miss in astrological literature is chiefly the statistical method *y 7hich certain fundamental facts could *e scientifically esta*lished. Ho)ing that this ans7er meets your re=uest. 4 remain( >ours sincerely( ?Sd.@ ".#. $A3# Definition of a good astrologer I asked Dr. B. V. Raman what he considers the -ualifications of a good astrologer. He e*plained to me that he more or less agreed with the -ualifications described by Varaha Mihira @3th century &.D.A. &nd he emphasised that a good astrologer has con-uered his hatred% his en)y% and his egoism. 2he astrologer should be culti)ated and satisfied with what he has got. He knows the Vedas and 4astras. He should be able to gi)e clear% concrete pre,dictions. He should be of humble mind and know his own limitations. But at the same time he must ha)e confidence in his astrological and occult knowledge. Dr. B.V. Raman was of the opinion that an astrologer who masters the astrological knowledge% and who is also initiated in Mantra&Siddhi% seldom makes mistakes. Hindu versus Western Astrology Dr. B. V. Raman feels that Hindu astrology appeals to the +esterners. &nd he thinks this is because India has had a continuous astrological tradition% while in his opinion the de)elopment in the western astrology almost stopped around 1 th century.

It was% howe)er% his hope that western astrology would one day redisco)er his own roots. He ga)e a warning to the western astrology against listening too much to the philosophy of psychology% in which the human being% with his own perfect free will% can do whate)er he likes. 2his attitude gi)es too much arrogance and remo)es the awareness of the astrologer from more essential matters. Three kinds of ar!a

&ccording to Dr. B. V. Raman we ha)e only got free will up to a certain degree. 2his is because e)erything is interconnected and controlled by a kind of cosmic intelligence. In order to understand this one has to study the law of 5arma a little closer. Dr. B. V. Raman e*plained that there are three different kinds of 5arma/ 1A 4anchita,5arma @operati)e karmaA 7A Prarabdha,5arma @accumulati)e karmaA <A &gami,5arma @karma created in futureA Dr. B. V. Raman said that the operati)e karma% whether good or e)il% cannot be a)oided% for the simple reason that we were born because of it% and we shall ha)e to e*perience it. 2he accumulati)e karma% on the other hand% can be postponed to future reincarnations% and because of that it is of a more )oluntary character. 2he horoscope in this connection becomes -uite a useful tool% a kind of blueprint% .ust like the way the knowledge of the seed leads to the knowledge of the plant and of the de)elopments that it is likely to ha)e. "adi astrology &fter this )ery philosophical talk about free will I told Dr. B. V. Raman about the encounters that I ha)e had with the palmleaf horoscopes in ?orth India called Bhrigu,4amhita. &t this point Dr. B. V. Raman laughed% and said that the British astrologer Se)herial was e-ually astonished when% many years ago% Dr. B. V. RamanBs grand,father% the late

hindu astrologer B. Suryanarain Rao% presented for him a completely correct life reading of his horoscope% including his own name% his parents name% life e)ents% etc.% found with a local nadi,astrologer. Dr. B. V. Raman has personal e*periences with more than 1# different collections of these peculiar horoscopes. He e*plained that in ?orth India they are normally referred to as Bhrigu,4amhita or Ra)ana,4amhita% while in 4outh India they are called ?adi,'ranthas. Dr. B. V. Raman was in possession of the original palmleaf manuscript of a collection named Dhru!a&3adi. 2hese horoscopes are claimed to be written by 4age 4atyacharya thousands of years ago. Dr. B. V. Raman fetched some horoscope bundles and showed me. I am myself in possession of -uite a number of these horoscopes in >nglish translation% made especially for me by friends in India. I sometimes use these horoscopes in my consultations% and therefore it was -uite strange for me to ha)e in my hands 4atyacharyaBs own handwritten 4anskrit ?adi, te*ts. Dr. B. V. Raman e*plained that in Dhru)a,?adi each sign is di)ided into 11# small parts% named 3adi&Amsas. Belonging to each of these ?adi,&msas there were certain planet combinations and an astrological reading in birdBs eye )iew% with a description of the most )ital points of each personBs life. &s an e*ample% ?adi,&msa% the e*clusi)ely on he said% would Pisces% in the Dr. B. V. Raman ga)e the name of a certain one that I was born in. 2his was based my looks and appearance. 2hat kind of person% be born when !upiter was in either Cancer or 1st% 1th or "th house.

I could only confirm that according to my horoscope !upiter is actually placed in the "th house in Cancer. He emphasised this !upiter position as an essential factor in my horoscope according to Dhru)a,?adi. #redictions !ade fro! Mantras &t this point our con)ersation took an interesting turn% as Dr. B. V. Raman e*plained that there were two different kinds

of palmleaf horoscopes. $ne based e*clusi)ely upon nadi, astrology% and Dhru)a,?adi belonged to this category. 2he other type% more mystical% and based on magic% he referred to as Mantra&3adis. He said that the astrological type ga)e more reliable predictions regarding the future. ?o matter whether it was based on horary or natal charts the predictions would be about #,6#D correct. Eantra,?adis% on the other hand% ga)e )ery unreliable predictions regarding the future. Howe)er% the past and the present would always be 1##D correct. 2he )ery near future could also be described correctly. &t this point% Dr. B. V. Raman told about an episode in 1"<1% when he met a Er. ?adar% who was in possession of Agastriya& 3adi% and Dr. Raman was of the opinion that it was a Eantra, ?adi. Er. ?adar studied Dr. RamanBs thumb )ery closely% and based only on the lines of this finger he found a palmleaf on which the name% the birthday% the horoscope% and the life reading were all correctly described. &lso it predicted that Dr. B. V. Raman would get a son in about a week% who would only get medium longe)ity. &ctually% his son was born 1# days after% and the son died much too young. >*periences of this kind really mystified Dr. Raman until 1"1<% when a ?adi,astrologer ha)ing a collection of palmlea)es called #uru&3adi ga)e the answer. +hen the astrologer had to make the horoscope% he ga)e Dr. B.V. Raman an empty palmleaf with no te*t. Dr. Raman was then asked to close his eyes while some mantras were recited. +hen he opened his eyes the horoscope and reading slowly became )isible. 2he reading was in the 5annada language. 2hen Dr. Raman was asked to close his eyes once more% and when he opened them again the te*t was translated into 2amil language. &t this occasion% all the peculiarities of ?adi,astrology were e*plained to Dr. Raman. $ur con)ersation ended% and we said goodbye. +e found a new auto,rickshaw% but this time% the same ride took only 1# minutes.