Mahatma Gandhi is considered by many the greatest hero in modern Indian history. Hindu astrology offers valuable insights into this unusual man and the timing of the major events of his life. His horoscope reflects several powerful planetary combinations, called yogas, which gave him the extraordinary strength, power and singularity of purpose necessary to make him a leader of masses. Additionally, the general placement of planets gave him strength of character and an idealistic and passionate nature.

His chart has Libra rising with Venus, the ruler of Libra, creating malavia yoga and resulting in a compassionate and brilliant mind. Further, Venus is occupying the constellation of expansive, benevolent Jupiter, which enhances Venus’ cooperative abilities; thus we see great power for working with and influencing people.

Mars, the “warrior” planet of vigor and initiative, ruler of the 2nd and 7th houses, is also situated in the rising sign, which gave him both physical and mental stamina. This also resulted in a charming and magnetic personality, and an intensity and passion of purpose.

Mercury, ruler of the 9th and 12th houses, is well placed in the rising sign in conjunction with Venus, creating a raja yoga bringing sharpness to his mental faculties. Added to that, Mercury is conjunct Mars, which endowed him with the power of persuasion and conviction in his beliefs. Even though the retrograde Jupiter in Aries is a maraka (meaning “death inflicting”), Jupiter’s benevolent aspect on the rising sign has enhanced the positive qualities reflected by the Libra planets (Venus, Mars and Mercury), giving him unusual poise, balance and stability.

Saturn is a planet of discipline and principles and is connected with order and restraint. It is also connected to concerns for humanitarian causes and peace. This is how, in its 2nd-house placement, Saturn brought the idea of fasting as well as ahimsa (nonviolence). This configuration was the seed for his unusual methods.

His powerful Moon in the 10th house occupying its own sign is conjunct malefic Rahu, which brought an emotional and volatile personality. Moon conjunct Rahu and in angle house (square or opposite aspect) to Mercury normally would have brought insanity to the person. However, here, because the Moon is occupying its own sign and is in a perfect angle to Jupiter, it has created a powerful gajakesari yoga. This yoga enhances the powerful Moon which was prominently placed in the 10th house, the house of success, career and accomplishment. Rahu, also significantly placed in the 10th house, is likewise enhanced because of its association with a strong Moon. A strong Rahu, in the house of career, made Gandhi liberal and unconventional, with the added passion and energy of a powerful Moon.

He came into fame during the Rahu cycle itself (1922-1940), and during the Jupiter dasha, under its maraka effect, he was assasinated. Although Jupiter brought his demise, it simultaneously brought him enormous popularity, and he was martyred in his death. This is a good example of how a benevolent maraka can bring both extremes of positive and negative effects.