Shadbala – An Overview

15 Jun

Om Gurubyo Namaha

Shadbala – An Overview

It is well known fact that the planets in the chart have to be strong to give good results. In order to assess the strength of planets we have a system called Shadbala which is in existence from the times of Sage Parashara

Shad Bala as the name suggests means six-fold strength and is made up of the following components:

  • Sthana Bala (Positonal strength)
  • Dig Bala (Directional strength)
  • Kala Bala (Temporal strength)
  • Chesta Bala (Motional strength)
  • Naisargika Bala (Natural strength)
  • Drik Bala (Aspect strength)


  • Uccha Bala: Uccha means exaltation. When a planet is placed in its highest exaltation point, it is of full strength and when it is in its deepest debilitation point, it is devoid of any strength. When in between the strength is calculated proportionately dependent on the distance these planets are placed from the highest exaltation or deepest debilitation point.
  • Sapta Vargiya Bala: Rashi, Hora, Drekkana, Saptamsha, Navamsha, Dwadasamsha and Trimsamsha constitute the Sapta Varga. The strength of the planets in these seven divisional charts based on their placements in Mulatrikona, own sign, friendly sign etc. constitute the Sapta vargiya bala.
  • Oja-Yugma Rashi-Amsha Bala: Oja means odd signs and Yugma means even signs. Thus, as the name imply, this strength is derived from a planet’s placement in the odd or even signs in the Rashi and Navamsha.
  • Kendradi Bala: The name itself implies how to compute this strength. A planet in a Kendra (1-4-7-10) gets full strength, while one in Panapara (2-5-8-11) gets half and the one in Apoklimas (12-3-6-9) gets quarter strength.
  • Drekkana Bala: Due to placement in first, second, or third Drekkana of a sign, male, female and hermaphrodite planets respectively, get a quarter strength according to placements in the first, second and third Drekkana.


  • The planets gains full Dig bala in the following houses:
  • 1st (Lagna Bhava) – Jupiter and Mercury
  • 10th (Karma Bhava) – Sun and Mars
  • 4th (Sukha Bhava) – Venus and Moon
  • 7th (Kalatra Bhava ) – Saturn
  • When the planets are placed away from their Dig Bala position, their strength is proportionately reduced.


  • Natonnata Bala: Natonnata is composed of two terms Nata and Unnata. Moon, Mars and Saturn are stronger at night, whereas Sun, Jupiter and Venus are stronger during the day. Mercury is stronger both during day and night. Hence, the Nata bala is seen for Moon, Mars and Saturn and Unnata bala is seen for Sun, Jupiter and Venus.
  • Paksha Bala: Paksha i.e.  Shukla Paksha & Krishna Paksha. The Benefics are stronger in the Shukla Paksha and the Malefics are stronger in the Krishna Paksha.
  • Tribhagiya Bala: Tribhaga means three parts. This strength hasderived its name from the fact that the day and night are divided into three parts each. The Planets gain strength during different part of a day like first third, second third or the last third part of the day.
  • Varsha (Abda) – Maasa- Dina- Hora Bala:
    • Varsha Bala: The Varsha mentioned here is the solar year or the Samvatsara, which commences when the Sun moves to the first sign on the zodiac, Mesha. This is the weekday lord of the day in which the Sun has transited to Mesha.
    • Maasa Bala: Like Varsha Lord, each Solar Month commences when the Sun enters each sign of the zodiac. Take the weekday lord on which Sun has moved to a new sign as the lord of the Masa.
    • Dina Bala: Dina is weekday. The lord of the weekday is the lord of the day.
    • Hora Bala: Hora means planetary hour. Each day from sunrise to next sunrise is divided into 24 equal parts of one hour. These Horas are ruled by the 7 planets from Sun to Saturn. At a particular time, the lord of a particular Hora gets the Hora bala.
    • Ayana Bala: The Earth’s equatorial plane when projected on to the celestial sphere is known as the celestial equator. The planets which can be above, below or placed on the celestial equator at any point of time. The angle which they make with respect to the plane of celestial equator measured from center of earth is called the Declination or Kranti. The Declination of Sun is maximum, i.e., 23°27’ during the solstices where the Sunrises either on Tropic of Cancer or Capricorn, whereas during the equinoxes, the declination becomes zero. Planets position with respect to celestial equator gives them either plus or minus strength.
    • Yuddha Bala: When two planets are placed inside each other’s orbs of influence, they are supposed to be at war or yuddha. Should there be a war between the planets, the difference between the Shad Balas of the two should be added to the victor’s Shad Bal and deducted from the Shad Bal of the vanquished.


  • Chesta means to move / motion . This strength is attained by all planets by the virtue of their kind of movement. Sun and Moon are excluded from this strength. For Sun, the Ayana Bala becomes its Chesta Bala, whereas for Moon, the Paksha Bala becomes its Chesta Bala. There are eight kinds of motions:

• Vakra (retrogression)
• Anuvakra (entering the previous sign in retrograde motion)
• Vikala (devoid of motion)
• Manda (somewhat slower motion than usual)
• Mandatara (slower than the previous)
• Sama (neither fast nor slow)
• Chara (faster than Sama)
• Atichara (entering next sign in accelerated motion)


  • Naisargika Bala is the natural strength of the planets. This strength does not depend on the specific chart but is fixed for all charts.
  • Naturally the planets are stronger in the order (ascending) of Saturn, Mars, Mercury, Jupiter, Venus, Moon and Sun. The seven planets  get relative strength according to their position in that order. Sun has the highest luminosity, Saturn is the darkest planet; other planets get portions of strength according to their position in that order.


  • This strength is gained by the virtue of the aspect (Graha Dristi) of different planets on other planet. The aspect of benefics is considered to be strength and the aspect of malefics is considered to be weaknesses.
  • For example, all planets have 7th aspect which gives full, Mars has 4th/8th which gives ¾ strength, Jupiter has 5th/9th which gives ½ strength and Saturn has 3rd/10th which gives ¼ strength.

Putting all together

  • By summing up all the six component values we get the Shadbala for a particular planet.
  • Unit for measurement of Shadbala is Rupa/ Virupa
  • One Rupa is equal to 60 Virupa
  • For a planet to be considered strong it must have a certain minimum strength. 390, 360, 300, 420, 390, 330 and 300 Virupa are the Shadbala strength needed for Sun, Moon, Mars, Mercury, Jupiter, Venus and Saturn respectively.
  • If the strength exceeds the above-mentioned values, the planet is deemed to be very strong.
  • A strong planet shall protect its houses and Karakakatva and is more capable of giving good results.
    • Jupiter, Mercury and Sun are considered strong, if each of their Sthana Bala, Dig Bala, Kaala Bala, Chesta Bala and Ayana Bala are165, 35, 50, 112 and 30 Virupa, respectively.
    • For Moon and Venus the required values are 133, 50, 30, 100 and 40 respectively.
    • For Mars and Saturn these are 96, 30, 40, 67 and 20 respectively.

Use of Shadbala

  • Sthana Bala:This aspect of planet indicates the best position and status that suits you.
  • Dig Bala: This shows the direction which is good for growth in the career or self development.
  • Kaala Bala: This shows the best time suitable for undertaking an activity.
  • Chesta Bala: This shows what drives us, our inherent desires and purpose of our struggle in this life.
  • Naisargika Bala: This is of lesser consequence as this remains constant all throughout
  • Drik Bala: This shows which planet shall be favourable all through the life of native as this is based on the aspect of benefics on the planet.


  • I have tried to give an insight into the vast realms of Shadbala.
  • Working out Shadbala involves lot of calculations and at times cumbersome.
  • Manual calculations take anywhere between an hour or two for an expert astrologer. However today computer can churn out the same in few seconds.
  • This subject is several centuries old yet remains an under studied and less understood aspect of planetary strength.
  • Most astrologers use total Shadbala values to analyse the effects during Dasha & Bhukti and rarely use individual components.
  • I advise serious students to do more research to find the exact use of these components and expand their horizons.
  • The following classic / books are recommended for research and further studies.
    • Brihat Parashara Hora Shastra
    • Graha & Bhava Balas by BV Raman
    • Shad Bala Planetary Strengths Calculation & Prediction by SK Duggal
    • Text Book For Shadbala Grahas & Bhava Bala by VP Jain
    • Shadbala: Planetary Strengths (Calculation and Application) by SK Duggal & Neerja Taneja.


34 Responses to “Shadbala – An Overview”

  1. shivsv October 4, 2011 at 21:55 #


    Is Kendradipathi Dosha bad enough to cause disaster in the native’s life, in spite of good shadbala? Would it be neutralized if the kendradipathi in question is retrograde?


    • Jyothishi October 9, 2011 at 11:21 #

      The classical texts like BPHS states that planets involved in Kendradhipathi Dosha loses its power and may not give the desired results.Therefore it may not cause disasters. However, I do not subscribe to this theory since I am a firm believer that benifics like Jupiter and Mercury always give good results despite carrying KD.

      Secondly, in my experience, I have noticed that planets which are retrograde normally gives ‘erratic / unpredictable’ results.

  2. rahul j October 5, 2012 at 03:44 #

    My Sun has 737 shad bala – meaning?

    • Jyothishi October 5, 2012 at 13:06 #

      Shadbala is the strength of planet and is measured in Rupas or Virupas. I am not sure which unit you have adopted for giving Sun 737.

      Anyway arrange the Shadbala of planets in ascending order to know which is the strongest planet for you. Higher the value, more powerful is the planet. More powerful the planet, more will be his results during his Dasha.


      • rahul j October 7, 2012 at 10:10 #

        my sun is in aries 10 house – 737 rupas

        • Jyothishi October 8, 2012 at 11:50 #

          Sun is exalted and hence he is most powerful in your chart and as stated earlier his Dasha will be good.

          Without any other info, I will not be able to comment further.

          If you so desire you can opt for personal consultation.


  3. nikhil K March 4, 2016 at 15:47 #

    Dear Sir, what is the result of 1) Saturn highest points in total shadbala= 590.75 points (ishta bala-49.05, kashta bala-10.95) ….2) Retrograde jupiter in 11th house in friendly sign aries- Good or bad ? 3) can you give information on panchamsha and vimshamsha charts, and how to interpret those charts, what does each house signify in those charts….

    Thank you

    • Jyothishi March 4, 2016 at 20:48 #

      I have time and again said that I do not do piecemeal interpretation.
      Predictions have to be done with full information i.e.. your full particulars.

      If you are interested to know the results, please go through my ‘Consultation’ page and opt for personal consultation.


  4. Gurpreet April 8, 2016 at 12:08 #

    Dear Sir,

    1st of all with my hands folded, i convey my regards to you. As mentioned by you, that planet with high value in shad bala is more powerful and gives more result during its dasha.

    If the malefic planets in the horoscope have high shadbala value, does it mean that it will give more of malefic result due to its malefic nature? Is it that the benefic planets of the horoscope should have high shad bala and the malefic ones low shad bala so that their strength is low and they give less malefic results?

    Please enlighten on this aspect.


    • Jyothishi April 8, 2016 at 20:47 #

      Planets strength is determined considering various factors. Just imagine a situation. A man wants to be philanthropic but he is poor.
      Therefore he cannot do much. On the contrary, if he is rich, he will donate generously. Take an other scenario, a robber or a thief if he is
      physically well built and intelligent, he will cause more damage to people and if he is weak and lame, he will cause less harm to the society.
      This is exactly the case here. Benefic if powerful, will do more good and if weak will do less good. On the other hand, Malefic if powerful will do more harm and if weak will do less harm


      • Gurpreet April 10, 2016 at 11:40 #

        Dear Sir,

        Thanks for enlightening on the matter. It means that in shad bala, the malefic planets should have less points and benefic more points.

        Here, the term benefic and malefic refers to the natural ones or the functional planets according to various horoscopes.


        • Jyothishi April 10, 2016 at 19:17 #

          When you get Shadbala, have you seen it being classified as Benefic and Malefic?
          If Jupiter is 12th Lord, what would I call that, Benefic or Malefic?
          Be sensible and serious when you ask questions.


          • Gurpreet April 11, 2016 at 11:37 #

            Dear Sir,

            In dhanu lagna, venus is no.1 malefic buit a natural benefic. so if in shad bala it has high points, will it give more of malefic result coz of malefic in dhanu lagna or positiv being a natural benefic.

            please clarify.

            • Jyothishi April 11, 2016 at 16:12 #

              You don’t seem to understand simple English. You are wasting my time.
              This topic is closed for you. Please do not comment again lest I will
              be forced to block your ID + IP.


              • Gurpreet April 11, 2016 at 16:26 #

                Dear Sir,

                I am sorry if i troubled you. may be im unable to express my question clearly.


                • Jyothishi April 11, 2016 at 16:38 #

                  Thank you.

                  God Bless.

                  Take care


                  • Gurpreet April 11, 2016 at 16:47 #

                    dear sir,

                    i sincerely request you to give some information on ishta phala and kashta phala..

                    in kark lagna, mars being a yog karak has more kashta phala than ishta phala. what does dis imply?

                    please give some guidance. i shall be highly obliged.


                    • Jyothishi April 11, 2016 at 18:23 #

                      So what if Mars is Yogakaraka, if he has more of Kashta phala, he will will give more of that.

                      End of discussion.


  5. Nikhil August 7, 2016 at 03:04 #

    Dear sir..!! will be really grateful to u if u cud clarify my doubts 1) what are yogi, and avayogi planets, and how they help us in our lives… ? (2) What are the results of jupiter– venus mutual aspects in navamsha , ex- jupiter in 4th, and venus in 10th, is it saraswati yoga ?

    • Jyothishi August 7, 2016 at 21:24 #


        Add the Longitude of Sun, longitude of Moon and 93° 20´. The point you get in space corresponds to a Nakshatra and the Nakshatra Lord becomes your Yogi planet.

        Duplicate Yogi

      The Rashi in which Yogi falls, its Lord becomes Duplicate Yogi planet.


        The Lord of 6th Star from Yogi Star, its Lord becomes Avayogi Planet


        Generally, Yogi planets give good results and Avayogi gives bad results during their Dasha and Bhukti. Duplicate Yogi in the star of Lagna gives good results.

        Divisional Charts

      In Divisional Charts there no aspects, Yogas etc. All such things have to be looked into in Rashi Chart only.


      • Nikhil August 8, 2016 at 00:05 #

        Thanks a lot for responding sir, you are amazing !!

      • Nikhil August 9, 2016 at 10:45 #

        Dear guruji, if someone has less points in the 8th house in sarvashtak varga, does it mean that he/ she will die early/ or wll not live a long life, and suppose the 8th house has aspects of a benefic, will it not help the native to live a long life ? are aspects counted while making sarvashtak varga chart, I was just curious to know about it as a student

        • Jyothishi August 11, 2016 at 13:28 #

          First master the Astakavrga system before you make any comment on BAV / SAV.
          Longevity is not as simple as Bindus in 8th House. 8th House has many other Karakatwas
          and you should see 8th House in overall context and not in isolation. Only God knows
          what is the Longevity of any person. Keep off that topic.


  6. Nikhil August 18, 2016 at 16:46 #

    Dear Guruji !!

    1)Can combust planets give good results, ( suppose- there are other conditions which are supporting them, such as a benefic aspect of Jupiter/ other strong planets, or if they are exalted, or sitting in a friendly sign )

    2) Is neechbhanga rajyoga applicable in navamsha chart, ( ex- debilated mercury in pisces, and the lord, jupiter sitting in any of d kendra house )

    If one has 1 or more debilitated planets in Navamsha does it mean he/ she will be less fortunate, poor.., and will have a bad marriage

    Thank you, Happy raksha bandhan !!

    • Jyothishi August 19, 2016 at 00:09 #

      1. I do not believe in combustion.
      2. Aspects and Yogas are to be seen in D-1 only.
      3. Yes, debilitated planets in D-9 indicate weak marriage.
      Where did you get ‘Poor’? D-9 is for marriage only.


  7. Nikhil August 21, 2016 at 12:58 #

    Thank you soo much Guruji, for your wonderful insights it helps students like me

    Dear Guruji,

    1) What is difference btwn Lagna chart or Bhava chalit chart, is Chalit chart better than lagna chart for making predictions ? is cusp chart and chalit chart same ?

    2) Where can we check the true Dignity of a planet , some people say planets give result acc to their placement in navamsha , some say Shashtiamsha , some say shadbala….it is all very confusing

    have a great day sir

    • Jyothishi August 21, 2016 at 19:31 #

      1. D-1 or Rashi Chart is the basic chart used for prediction. I do not believe in Bhava Chart
      2. Stop reading articles on Internet and asking me the questions.
      You can certainly ask the writer himself? Isn’t it. Dignity is as it it is in D-1 / D-9 chart.
      We can go to respective Divisional Chart for that particular facet of life, for example, D-10 for profession etc.

      Please note that I will not answer questions which comes to your mind after reading somethings on the net.


      • Nikhil August 21, 2016 at 20:32 #

        No sir, I don’t follow internet that much, i refer to Wikipedia sometimes, or monthly astrology magazines at library, or your blog that’s it !! Henceforth i will ask questions very rarely.

        I am thankful to you, that you take out your precious time to answer our doubts

        Good night guruji !!

  8. Neeraj September 25, 2016 at 13:20 #

    Dear sir

    I am cancer ascendant, Jupiter is in the 8th house, Aquarius sign. does it make harsh vipreet rajyoga as lord of the 6th house is placed in 8th house. Lagna occupied by sun & mer. 3rd house venus + moon. Ketu in 4th & mars is in 6th.

    • Jyothishi September 25, 2016 at 13:57 #

      Firstly, your question has nothing to with Shadbala, the topic of this article.
      Secondly, I do not answer questions related to personal charts.


  9. narashima October 5, 2016 at 06:43 #

    Jupiter retrograde in libra
    chesta bala for retrograde jupiter

    So retrograde jupiter aspects is benefic 100 percent ?

    Please reply
    Thank you


    • Jyothishi October 5, 2016 at 12:08 #

      Simple, if Jupiter is Retrograde, it gives erratic results. Therefore if it is aspecting
      any other planet and thus forms a Yoga, that Yoga will also give erratic results.

      Please do not discus your personal chart here.


  10. Debendra February 24, 2023 at 13:41 #

    Jai Jagannath
    why a planet becomes combust and retrograde simultaneously?

    • Jyothishi February 24, 2023 at 19:43 #

      Retrogression is an apparent phenomenon and in actuality no planet moves backwards. As the orbits of planets are eliptical there comes certain points where for an observer it appears that the other planet is moving bakwards. As for Combustion, if planets come within 3 deg of Sun they call it is combust. There is no unanimity amongst astrologers as to what is combust & deep combust. This phenomenon is is very common amongst fast moving planets like Mercury and Venus which are closest to Sun and when they are combust, they may also appear to be Retro. So this is a less occuring combination and it is not a must that combust planets have to be Retro or conversely Rero plaets to be Combust. This phenomenon may also occur when there is a cluster of planets with Sun in same house.

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