Serena Williams’s Jaimini Raja Yogas

I saw a sports headline yesterday indicating that Serena Williams won the Nasdaq-100 tennis tournament, defeating Jennifer Capriati. She was only an 8th seed, and to win she had to defeat the three top ranked woman consecutively, including her sister, Venus.

Obviously, it is quite an achievement and marks a highpoint in her tennis career. I did not predict it, but I have been watching both her and her sister Venus’s charts, since they are both running excellent dasha-antardasha for major success. Serena’s birth data from her certificate is:

Serena Williams’s Natal Chart

Her rise to the top ranks of woman’s professional tennis has all come in her Mars dasha period which began in September of 1997 when she was 16. Her Mars is a debilitated lagna lord in the 4th house with Rahu, giving a raja yoga (1st trikona lord in the 4th angle…and Rahu in a kendra with a trikona lord – see Rahu and Ketu Giving Raja Yoga). 

The strength of the yoga is deceptive since Mars is in its debilitation Cancer. However, see that in the navamsha it is exalted in Cancer. Her Mars is not giving the results of a debilitated planet at all. Quite the contrary. 

Serena Williams’s Navamsha Chart

The other notable feature of her birth chart is the three planet conjunction in her 6th house of competition involving the 10th lord Saturn, the 9th lord Jupiter, and the 5th lord Sun. 

This dramatic raja yoga involving the 10th lord of career configured in a significant raja yoga and connected to the 6th house or 6th lord, is the kind of thing you see repeatedly in the charts of world-class professional athletes. 

The connection to the 3rd house of sports, performance etc. comes through dispositorship. Her 10th lord Saturn is in Mercury’s sign Virgo, ruling both the 6th house and the 3rd house. The dasha of Mars, in which her success has come, is in Mercury’s nakshatra.

She is currently running Mars-Ketu-Venus (as of Mar 31, 2002 when the article was written). Mars-Ketu, with Ketu in the 10th strongly activates the raja yoga. Venus is also in an angle in its own sign, with another benefic. Note how this dasha sequence highlightes three planets in kendras and therefore all in kendras from each other.

All three of these planets are well-placed in the dashamsha (D-10) as well. With Mars in the 4th, Ketu in the 5th and Venus in the 11th in its own sign. 

Parenthetically, another high point of her career….winning the the U.S. Open title in September of 1999…came in Mars-Jupiter-Venus. In the dashamsha chart, Jupiter is in its moolatrikona sign, Sagittarius, in the 6th house of competition.

Serena Williams’s Dashamsha Chart

It is from the Jaimini angle that the chart of Serena Williams most interests me.
Using the 7 karaka scheme advocated by Shri K.N. Rao, her chart gives:

AK Moon
Amk Jupiter
BK Venus
MK Mars
PK Saturn
GK Sun
DK Mercury

Shri Rao also advocates an approach of seeing simple Jaimini raja yogas through combinations (conjunction or sign-aspect) between:

AK-Amk-PK-DK-5th lord from lagna. Any combination of these 5 give a raja yoga.

In the chart of Serena Williamns, her AmK Jupiter and PK Saturn combine in Virgo to give a raja yoga.

As the Sun is the 5th lord of her chart, its combination with the AmK and the PK amount to two more raja yogas, giving three in all for her planets in Virgo. Keep this in mind when we look at timing. Also, her AK Moon and DK Mercury are in mutual (sign) aspect, giving another raja yoga.

In her navamsha, these reduce to one, a mutual aspect between her AK Moon and PK Saturn…or two…if you count the mutual aspect between AmK Jupiter and the exalted 5th lord D-9, Mars.

At age 12 she entered her Cancer period (according to the way Shri Rao calculates this sign dasha). It is an 11 year period running from Sept. 1993 to Sept. 2004. All her great success has come in this period.

For those unfamiliar with a Jaimini style analysis of sign dasha, the trick is to use the dasha (or antardasha ) sign as a lagna, and see the planetary patterning from there, with particular reference to the disposition of the various special karakas based on degrees of planets (see above).

First of all, the dasha sign Cancer has the conjunction of Mars and Rahu, (with Mars exalted in the navamsha.) Using Cancer as a lagna, Mars becomes the 10th and 5th lords (yogakaraka planet) in the 1st house, magnified by Rahu.

Note that from Cancer, the 3rd house of sports (Virgo) becomes very accenuated, and contains the Jaimini raja yoga planets (Amk + PK + 5th lord).

Before we look at timing, keep in mind the principle that periods containing the AmK or from where the AmK falls in the 10th house…particularly if the AmK is configured in a Jaimini raja yoga….indicate rise in career. 

In Cancer-Sagittarius she became the first black woman to win the U.S. Open since 1958. See how from Saggitarius, Virgo becomes the 10th house, holding all the Jaimini raja yoga-giving planets inclduing the AmK.

This latest victory has come in Cancer-Virgo.

Though I am likely to start an arguement by pointing this out, I think it is important to understand that if you use the 8 karaka scheme that includes Rahu….then most of the planets shift their identity. Jupiter, instead of being the AmK, becomes the BK. Saturn, instead of being the PK becomes the GK.

The Jaimini raja yogas in Virgo completely fall apart…in which case, a career rise in Cancer-Saggitarius and Cancer-Virgo is not shown at all.

Also, if you calculate the sub-periods in Chara dasha in the direct order only….then this timing is changed.

Please understand that I am not criticizing those who use 8 karakas or calculate the sub-periods in Chara differently….I am only saying that it makes a huge difference.

I follow Shri Rao’s methods because they have given me results – consistently. I am sure that those who use other methods can point to their results as well.

Two more points in closing.

Another controversy in Jaimini is whether the karakamsha lagna (position of the atmakaraka in the navamsha chart) is to be applied to the birth chart or the navamsha…or both.

The Moon in her chart is the planet with the highest degrees, hence becomes the atmakaraka, regardless of whether you use 7 or 8 karakas. It goes into Sagittarius in the navamsha.

One sutra of Jaimini’s states that if Saturn is connected to the karakamsha lagna, then the person is very successful and distinguished in their line of endeavor. Some translate this sutra to mean this applies only when Saturn is in the karakamsha, while some translate it more liberally to mean also aspecting or falling in a kendra from the karakamsha lagna.

Apply her karakamsha lagna (Sagittarius) to the birth chart and the picture becomes very dramatic. There, Sagittarius receives the sign aspect of all the raja yoga forming planets in Virgo including Saturn….plus the 10th house from Sagittarius becomes extraordinarily strong from the standpoint of achievement and fame. This is a fitting picture of someone as successful in her field as Serena Williiams. Apply karakamsha in the navamsha only, and the picture is not near as dramatic, although Saturn again aspects and falls in a kendra from Sagittarius.

Coming back to the above mentioned sutra….if Saturn in the karakamsha gives great success….and if karakamsha lagna was to be applied only in the navamsha….it would lead to the logical absurdity that anyone with Saturn as the atmakaraka would be very successful.

An examination of many such horoscopes shows that this is just not true. This is the point Shri Rao makes in one of his books. But if you apply this principle to the birth chart instead, in my experience you will find it working.

I am of the opinion that if you just research charts, you will be guided to see how the interpretive principles given in the classics work, versus going on the basis of conflicting translations and commentaries. 

reprinted with permission 

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