Tag Archives: Varsha Bla

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.