How Strong are your Planets?

Michael Conneely

In my Astrology Readings and Astrology Courses, I can combine both Western Astrology with Vedic Astrology, and this gives a really vast and comprehensive declaration. It is possible to judge how a planet will manifest in our life in a very accurate way.

Vedic Astrology uses the Sidereal Zodiac, which is anchored to the (relatively) fixed stars; Western Astrology uses the Tropical Zodiac which is based on the position that Sun occupies on the day of the Vernal Equinox, the First Day of Spring, and so Western Astrology, being Sun sign based is attunes to our egoic psychological unfoldment, whereas Vedic Astrology declares more of our spiritual destiny and how that will unfold. In fact, you need both. And the contribution of the Outer Planets of Western Astrology: Uranus, Neptune and Pluto is crucially needed, as is the importance of Chiron the Wounded Healer in our Chart.

It is so helpful to have this sort of expert Astrological declaration about how each of our planets will perform in our life. And so you can book an Astrology Reading with me, see:

But it also wonderful to learn to do it for yourself, so you can enrol on one of my courses, for example:
Western Foundation Astrology Course:
Vedic Foundation Astrology Course:

But Astrological perception on its own is not enough. And we must certainly not fall victim to astrological formula and rule-bound repetitious utterance.  We so crucially also need to be open to our magic – especially where destiny has dealt us a more challenging than usual hand (where our soul has chosen that for this lifetime).

Regarding the question about strength of a planet in our Vedic birth chart: the key thing I learned on my second Vedic astrology course was to ask: strong for what?

When a planet is strong we absolutely need to be aware: ‘strong’ is not necessarily a boon: it can be a curse. Just for one example, it can make us too pushy until we learn to understand and heal it. Adolph Hitler had an Exalted Sun in Ashwini Nakshatra in Vedic sign of Aries. The Nakshatras are the wonderful 27-sign Lunar Zodiac of vedic Astrology. See my:


Having made the crucial introduction about the need to be flexible and intuitive about the use of the Vedic astrology formulae, I thought it would be a good idea to show the clear foundation for working out how strong a planet is in your birth chart:  planets are strong if:

In own sign
In sign of exaltation
In moolatrikona sign
When certain yogas are formed, such as Parivartana and so on.

And then there are other considerations like directional strength, and strength calculated across a range of Varga or ‘Divisional’ charts (The Vimshopak calculation).

And in Western Astrology too, which is very psychodynamic and encompasses psychosynthesis, there are also ways of calculating whether a strong or weak.


I do that is that having mastered the basics, we need to go on to examine the statements about a planet being strong or weak and ask ourselves what does this really mean??? You have learn to think intuitively and flexibly as well, when you are working out how strong a planet is in your birth chart.

For example, my Moon at 29 Pisces 58 could be considered ‘weak’ in that it’s rashi sandhi or edge of sign.
Now, my Moon is Lagnesha: i.e. my Moon Lord of my Cancer lagna/Ascendant in my birth chart, but some would definitely consider it a weak Lord for my chart.

Indeed, worse than this, my Moon is Gandanta: in one of the three dangerous and difficult points in the birth chart which are the transition points from Water signs to Fire signs. Moon being Gandanta means that mother will not be there for you (and she wasn’t: she put me in a Convent Orphanage – and then an adoption followed where I was treated as invisible, belittled and walked over time and time again).

BUT you have to realise that my Moon actually has immense strength potential.  It has the potential to achieve immense strength.

This is firstly because it is my Atmakaraka (or ‘soul indicator’).

And it is also because it’s Vargottoma. Vargottoma means a planet is in same sign in Rashi (birth chart) as it is in Navamsha (The 9th Harmonic or Divisional Chart, also called Varga Charts which make powerful declaration about specific areas of our life: in the case of the Navamsha, this is the chart of Soul and Marriage.

So, the point I am making is that horrible challenge was set for me by my Gandanta Moon, BUT – but enormous spiritual strength is also there if I can heal and access the magic.

The essence of that special strength is in terms of spiritual messages (good or hard) that will come all my life due to my Moon being Vargottoma.

So you can see that to ask the question: How strong is my planet? Actually, needs to be answered with a lot of learning and intelligence. And so, this is what you will get if you enrol for one of my Astrology Readings. And this is what you will learn to do for yourself if you enrol for one of my very caring Astrology Courses.

Let’s take a second example around the issue of strength:  Mars.

My Mars is really strong. It’s what’s called Raja Yoga in Vedic Astrology because it’s in Scorpio, the sign Mars rules.

But, there’s a twist to the tale: Argala!

Using the Argala system of Jaimini astrology, that strength is weakened or made very complicated because I have three difficult planets in the 12th House from my Mars (12th House is the House before the house occupied by my Mars. If you have planets in the 12th House from the planet you are assessing, this is Negative Argala (where some problem is created for the functioning of the planet).

And in my case, these three planets that are in the 12th House from my Mars are a deeply Fallen sun at 1 deg Libra, also Ketu (the South Node of the Moon) and Mercury (where Mercury is problematic as he is Lord of the 12th House of Loss as well as the third House of obstacles! – and he’s Retrograde!

So here we have a case of a strong Mars being made very complicated by negative Argala. Yet the gift of this problematic Mars is capacity for deep mystical focus and insight!

Like my Moon, my Sun, too, is Vargottoma (i.e. Sun is in same sign in Rashi as in Navamsha). So, this means my Soul will always be sending my Fallen Sun strong messages throughout my life, with the divine purpose to lead me to understand what a weak Sun means, and that will have the aim to spur me to learn how to strengthen, heal and empower my weak Sun. so in this way, to have this weak Sun is a spiritual gift, though a difficult spiritual gift. So here we have a case of a planet being weak is not necessarily ‘bad’.

My Sun is conjunct Ketu, the South Node of the Moon. Ketu is, of course, potentially undoing and dissolution, and with Ketu being conjunct my weak Sun, this is a very bad indicator for Father issues, because in Vedic Astrology Sun is Karaka (or indicator) for Father: I only met my father once and he asked to borrow money from me!

Never the less, my weak Sun makes backhanded strong gift: Having Sun conjunct Ketu and conjunct Mercury as the Lord of the 12th House, can give you openings to spiritual truth and can give you spiritual and visionary merger: the crock of gold at the end of the rainbow, as the Irish round here would say!

So, you are guaranteed a very caring, thorough and expert Astrology Reading if you book with me: see:

Or, I will give you very caring and individual teaching if you enrol on one of my Foundation courses, for example:
Western Foundation Astrology Course:
Vedic Foundation Astrology Course:

And I also offer wonderful Advanced Course teaching too, and am used to supporting students who already have a lot of astrological knowledge. See:

And also, there’s my wonderful mini-courses:

I look forward to hearing from you and to working with you,


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