In Vedic Astrology the term Purushartha means karma (work) done by an individual. It is the driving force and the foremost reason why astrology gets it wrong in terms of forecasting future of the native. Just like there are Variants and Pie Values in Mathematics, Friction in Physics and Worst Case Scenarios in Programming which cause fluctuations in results there is Purushartha in astrology which puts all the calculations as meaningless and native achieves things which cannot be calculated at birth. This single word maligns astrology like no other one does yet this article is only meant to praise this nemesis called Purushartha cause it is truly a great nemesis.
Purushartha is nothing but hard work without any sort of expectations in return. The very essence of Bhagvad Gita can summarize Purushartha like no one else can:
"One cannot achieve anything without doing Karma (Purushartha). Don't try to get anything for free. No work is bereft of gains. One should never ever get depressed in life. One should not lose confidence while doing his Karma (Purushartha)." -- Pandurang Athvale
Purushartha and Prarabdha are not on collision course but run parallel and intersect at some point of the long road. So people who loathe fate and luck should not get agitated at those who believe in them and those who believe in fate and luck should understand that today's hard work is tomorrow's good luck. Some natives are born with the knowledge of what career path they need to pursue to be successful in life. Generally they are the people who taunt everyone else with early success. What they fail to realize is that fate was responsible for making them pursue the respected field and gain success. The jibes and taunt of today towards other less fortunate soul would result in future misery for sure. Similary the natives passing through difficult times are so burdened by misery that they never strive to get out of them. What they fail to realize is hard work of today would sow the seed for future success and happiness in life. Mother Nature is a great balancer whether anyone likes it or not. Karma is working in ways which human beings cannot fathom.
There is a dilemma in people when it comes to using Hard Work or applying Luck. Vedic Astrology and Ancient Astrological Texts suggest trying hard (Purushartha) for matters of Dharma Houses (1st house, 5th house and 9th house) as well as Moksha Houses (4th house, 8th house and 12th house). To be more precise one should try hard for a good character, healthy body and mind, good education, being religious and just as well try hard to get peace and happiness, If you are into spirituality do think of death and rebirths and the attainment of Moksha (freedom from cycle of life and death) as part of achieving your Purushartha. If you are not into spirituality it is still necessary to work hard on other points prescribed.
Astrologers are consulted to find solutions to problems which are not in control of human beings like relationships and career. Astrologers also don't help the cause by milking the poor soul. Instead it would serve a far better cause if a native consults an astrologer for matters which are in his control. "Success is waiting for individual and all he needs to do is Purushartha assigned to him according to his nature and karma"- Source: Bhagvad Gita (Chapter 18 Sloka 45).
Finally don't lose hope when all is lost and don't get over the moon when you gain everything you've set out to do. Both are temperory. Your actions are permanent. So stick to your assigned Purushartha and learn to enjoy the Prarabdha which has befallen you whether it is good or bad.
The fate of an individual plays a big part in shaping his life. If an individual is meant to rise from Rags to Riches then fate pushes him in that direction. If he is meant to fall down from a top position in life then fate pushes him in that direction. It all depends on karma of an individual or in other words Purushartha. To a believer of fate, luck controls the destiny while for a believer of Purushartha, hard work controls the destiny. Actually the reality is somewhere in the middle.
Prarabdha and Purushartha are not on collision course but rather run parallel and meet at some point of the road. The hard work of today becomes the good fortune of tomorrow. The fate faced today maybe a result of bad deeds of yesterday. Similarly today's fate may decide the native's choice of work. In astrological terms the placement and aspect of benefic planets like Jupiter, Venus and Moon drive the good Prarabdha while placement and aspect of malefic planets like Saturn, Mars, Rahu and Ketu drive the bad Prarabdha which befalls a native. But there is the quintessential question as to where should one apply Prarabdha and where should one apply Purushartha. Vedic Astrology and ancient Astrology Text suggests leaving matters of Artha Houses (2nd house, 6th house and 10th house) and Kama Houses (3rd house, 7th house and 11th house) to Prarabdha. Well to be more accurate leave matters of Savings, Popularity in Media, Matters of Debt, Marriage, Business Partnership (success or failure in partnership), Career Standing, Financial Gains and Quality and Quantity of Friends to fate. Not every matter in the concerned houses is better to leave to fate but knowing that Artha Houses and Kama Houses are driven by fate saves pain in future as they are beyond one's control.
As Kabir rightly said in his doha:
“Manushya kadi balwaan nahi; Samaya sab se balwaan
Kaabe Arjuna lutiyo; Wahi dhanush wahi baan”
Translation: Time is far more powerful compared to the human. The greatest of the warrior Arjuna lost to a bunch of tribesman of forest even though he was using the same quiver and arrows which he used to defeat mighty warriors.
Countless stories exist to justify Saint Kabir's views. But the point put across is not to get arrogant or conceited if you find victory and not to get deflated and lose hope at loss. Accept your Prarabdha and work towards your Purushartha.
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