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Jyotisha Traditional Remedial Ratana


wikipedia: rudraksha


Rudraksha Tree at Rishikesh

As a folk remedy, the red (rudra) seeds (aksa) of the evergreen tree Eleocarpus Ganitrus are very popular throughout the Bharati diaspora. Affordable and accessible to the common man, rudra-aksha seeds are assigned curative powers which match the full range of human sufferings.

The hillsides of the lower Himalaya are covered in Eleocarpus Ganitrus and similar species which enjoy the warm, dry soil and sloping drainage of the regional ecosystems. The trees are quick-growing and are not rare. Thus a keynote of the rudraksha tradition is the affordability of the seeds (anyone can collect them) and their accessibility in the local marketplace. As with other jewels and talismans, there is a great swap-and-trade system amongst enthusiasts who will vouch for the miraculous powers of these large, hard, reddish-black seeds.

The ridges in rudraksha are called"mukhi" (ridge, peak, face of a cliff; related to English"mug" face).

Rudra-aksha are assigned to users on the basis of the number of mukhi in the seed. Thus, one-ridge = ek-mukhi; 2-ridges dui-mukhi; 3 ridges = tin-mukhi; and so forth with the variations of"ek-dui-tin"according to the local pronunciation. (Nepali is given here).

Traditionally, the seeds can produce ridges (mukhi) in amounts varying from 1 mukhi (minimum) to 31 mukhi (maximum). Rudraksha in the range 1-mukhi to 9-mukhi are conventionally prescribed as remedies for astrological debilities of the nine graha while the range 10-mukhi to 14-mukhi is assigned to the deities Vishnu (10), Hanuman (11), the Aditi (12), Gulika or Mandi or Dhuma (14) and many other variations according to local customs and sacred traditions.

One single tree can produce hundreds of intensely blue fruits. Inside these fruits are seeds that can bear all of the mukhi ridge patterns, from 1-mukhi to 30+-mukhi and all in between.

Supposedly, authentic natural rudraksha never float in water. (Whereas the cleverly crafted artificial beads made from poly-resin that can be found in markets near the Chinese border are supposed to always float. )

Worshippers of Lord Shiva, Lord Rudra, and Lord Vishnu * especially the 10-mukhi vaishnava version * ake great delight in the plethora of seed-types available for appreciative use.

The most common non-medicinal and non-remedial use for rudraksha seeds is making them into beads to be strung upon a mala = rosary = for counting prayers during meditative worship. Unlike crystalline jewels, which are rendered ineffective by puncturing, rudraksha are not considered to be harmed by drilling a hole through their center in order to string them into a mala.


Rudraksha as a Jyotisha remedy

  • Enumerating the mukhi (ridges, faces) of the rudra-aksha seeds

When matched to the astrological nativity, rudraksha ridge-counts can be assigned to alleviate the effects of uncomfortable planets:

  • 1-mukhi = Surya = royal certainty, brightness, confidence, pride. A sought-after talisman for winning local elections (e.g. panchyat) and getting fame for dramatic or singing roles

  • 2-mukhi = Chandra = psycho-mental calm, rhythms of life, anchors family relationships. Prescribed for people who are uncomfortable living with their relatives in crowded houses.

  • 3-mukhi = Mangala = fire, action, movement. Often suggested for people with fiery temperaments especially those with the astrological Kuja Dosha as a way to"fight fire with fire"and"burn off" the parallel life sin which purportedly caused the marital misalignment in the present life. Local healers prescribe the 3-mukhi for fevers and restless children.

  • 4-mukhi = Budha = logical explanations. Often assigned as a corrective for astrological afflictions to Budha; to those who can't concentrate; for kids who don't like school. Ambitious parents might buy a char-mukhi rudraksha to help their child earn a"topper" score in national school exams.

  • 5-mukhi = all-good-guiding Guru = believed generally helpful in matters of prosperity and expansion, as well as power to increase effectiveness of temple puja. Prescribed as an antidote to astrologically afflicted placements of Jupiter, and for cases of infertility.

  • 6-mukhi = Zukra = art, music, pleasures, visual beauty. A wealth talisman and curative for insufficient funds. Worn by beauty-conscious ladies, artists and musicians throughout the region.

  • 7-mukhi = Shani = orderliness, lawfulness and elegant simplicity. Assigned to those seeking a steady lifestyle, such as a father who is trying to earn a regular income and avoid the daily temptations of alcohol and prostitutes. Generally prescribed during Sade Sati and other daunting Shani transits.

  • 8-mukhi = Rahu = ambition for empowerment. Favored by dhami, tantriki, sorcerers and gamblers who want to"make it big" in a massive show of power. Not normally auspicious but sought by contrarians and those who live on the margins.

  • 9-mukhi = Ketu = scattering, dispersal, surrender. Assigned to wandering mendicants; those who have taken a vow of brahmacharya; perpetual pilgrims; sannyasi. Often given in charity to monastics or one entering the fourth and final stage of life.


Pancha Mukhi Hanuman

Rudraksha as an aid to worship

  • 10-muhki = Vishnu's dash-avatara = 10 incarnations. 10-mukhi = 9 graha + 1 = "big picture, completion". Favored by worshippers of Lord Vishnu and generally prescribed as broad-spectrum protection from less benevolent forces.

  • 11-mukhi = Hanumat the Sudden Wind (prakriti = 'hanuman', the quick-darting monkey god). 'Rudra' = one of the names for the number 11, due in part to the fact that transiting Shani travelling clockwise will contact transiting Rahu travelling counterclockwise approximately every 11 years. Prescribed as an antidote for the suffering of Sade Sati, usually with an admonition to perform the Seva which counteracts ignorance, after the model of Hanuman the Great Servant.

  • 12-mukhi = "having it all" (all 12 bhava activated) = Surya. Often the 12-mukhi is prescribed along with the 1-mukhi as a sort of counterbalance of spirituality (1) against too much material success (12)

  • 13-mukhi = (also Shukra) = magnetic beauty, albeit slightly demonic in nature. Favored by ladies as a good-luck charm, 13-mukhi rudraksha are believed to make the female appear more attractive . Parents seeking a favorable marriage alliance for their daughter may have her wearing a necklace of several dozen of these seeds, however in the local custom a 6-mukhi should be inserted between every 13-mukhi to prevent impropriety.

  • 14-mukhi = double-Shani = "abandon all hope" moksha = alignment with the cold, dark, unmoving elements of reality. Acceptance of death. Prescribed for the grieving, especially widows and parents who have lost a child.

Rudraksha seeds are sometimes ground into a powder which can be made into a paste for smearing on the skin in temple discourses, bound into a poultice for medical purposes, or spread in the rafters of the house for protection.

As with all similar talismans and thought-reminders, the power of the remedy is proportional to the intensity of the user's paradigm of belief in its efficacy.

Vocabulary for Rudra-aksha


  • the mouth, face, countenance
  • the beak of a bird, snout or muzzle of an animal
  • a direction, quarter
  • turning or turned towards, facing
  • opening aperture, entrance into or egress out of
  • the mouth or embouchure (of a river)
  • the upper part, head, top, tip or point of anything
  • the edge (of an axe)
  • the nipple (of a breast)
  • the surface, upper side
  • introduction, commencement, beginning
  • source, cause, occasion of
  • (in drama) the original cause or source of the action
  • the summit
  • rock salt


  • a kind of scissors or an instrument pointed like a heron's beak


  • a die for gambling; a cube;
  • a seed of which rosaries are made (cf. indrAkSa, rudrAkSa)
  • Eleocarpus Ganitrus, producing that seed;

  • a weight called karSa, equal to 16 mashas;
  • Beleric Myrobalan (Terminalia Belerica), the seed of which is used as a die

  • a Name of the number 5
  • an organ of sense; sensual perception
  • the soul
  • knowledge, religious knowledge
  • a lawsuit
  • a person born blind
  • the eye


  • crying, howling, roaring, dreadful, terrific, terrible, horrible (applied to the Asvins, Agni, Indra, Mitra, Varuna)
  • red, shining, glittering
  • strong, having or bestowing strength or power
  • driving away evil
  • running about and roaring
  • praiseworthy, to be praised
  • worshipper
  • Roarer or Howler
  • Name of the god of tempests and father and ruler of the Rudras and Maruts
  • in the Veda he is closely connected with Indra and still more with Agni, the god of fire, which, as a destroying agent, rages and crackles like the roaring storm, and also with Kala or Time the all-consumer, with whom he is afterwards identified; though generally represented as a destroying deity, whose terrible shafts bring death or disease on men and cattle
  • he has also the epithet" benevolent"' or `"auspicious "', and is even supposed to possess healing powers from his chasing away vapours and purifying the atmosphere;
  • in the later mythology the word 'ziva' which does not occur as a name in the Veda, was employed, first as an euphemistic epithet and then as a real name for Rudra, who lost his special connection with storms and developed into a form of the disintegrating and reintegrating principle; while a new class of beings, described as eleven [or thirty-three] in number, though still called Rudras, took the place of the original Rudras or Maruts
  • Rudra is said to have sprung from Brahma's forehead, and to have afterwards separated himself into a figure half male and half female, the former portion separating again into the 11 Rudras, hence these later Rudras are sometimes regarded as inferior manifestations of Siva, and most of their names, which are variously given in the different Puranas, are also names of Siva
  • those of the Vayu. are Ajaikapad, Ahir-budhnya, Hara, Nirrita, Isvara, Bhuvana, Angaraka, Ardha-ketu, Mrityu, Sarpa, Kapa1lin;
  • accord. to others the Rudras are represented as children of Kasyapa and Surabhi or of Brahma and Surabhi or of Bhuta and Su-rupa
  • Rudra is one of the 8 forms of S3iva; elsewhere he is reckoned among the Dik-palas as regent of the north-east quarter)
  • N. of the number"eleven" (from the 11 Rudras)
  • the eleventh Cat.;
  • (in astrol.) N. of the first Muhurta;
  • (in music) of a kind of stringed instrument (cf. rudra-vINA
  • of the letter {e}
  • pl. the Rudras or sons of Rudra (sometimes identified with or distinguished from the Maruts who are 11 or 33 in number)

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