Horoscope matches nonetheless fashionable in Kerala – regardless of failed marriages and little science


In one of many latest dowry deaths of younger girls within the state, Suchithra, the youngest of all of them, was married off on the age of 19 as a result of her horoscope ‘suggested’ it.

Within the 1989 Malayalam movie Jaathakam (Horoscope), a girl dies due to one man’s blind religion in horoscopes. (Spoiler alert) A father, shocked by his son’s sudden marriage to a girl he loves, is horrified to study that their horoscopes don’t match. Inside a 12 months of the wedding, the girl dies and the son, who didn’t consider in horoscopes, turns right into a blind believer. It’s a lot later, after a second marriage with a girl who believes in science, that he realises his first spouse was killed by the superstitious father, who thought she would convey hazard.

Greater than three many years later, the movie stays related as a result of individuals in Kerala nonetheless religiously get their horoscopes out when it’s time for a marriage. In one of many latest dowry deaths of younger girls within the state, Suchithra, the youngest of all of them, was married off on the age of 19 as a result of her horoscope suggested it. Her father Sunil later informed the media that that’s why they organized her marriage quickly after her Class 12. Inside months of her marriage ceremony, Suchithra died, allegedly on account of dowry harassment at her marital house.

“The explanation individuals nonetheless observe horoscopes so blindly in Kerala, regardless of the excessive literacy price, is lack of scientific consciousness. It’s not sufficient that you simply examine science, it is advisable apply it in your life,” says Lilly Kartha, state vp of the Kerala Sasthra Sahithya Parishad (KSSP), a science motion in Kerala that has been functioning since 1962.

Learn: One other alleged dowry demise in Kerala: 19-year-old discovered useless

A younger girl in Lilly’s neighbourhood in Palakkad was married off as quickly as she might be legally married (18 years for girls). Her mom, a home employee, was her solely relative. “They checked out horoscopes, discovered a match, and wasted no time in getting the younger girl married. Inside days, the abuse started. It turned out her husband would drink and bodily assault her. She’s had two abortions in six years of marriage due to this. A lot for the horoscope match!” Lilly says.

Chovva dosham

In reference to horoscopes, fairly often you hear the time period ‘chovva dosham’ – which means downside with the place of Mars – which is taken into account dangerous luck for marriages. So an individual with chovva dosham is suggested by astrologers to attend for one more individual with the identical dosham to keep away from dangerous luck.

Manasa*, an English graduate in Thiruvananthapuram who had chovva dosham, needed to wait as many proposals got here and went earlier than her household may discover a match. When it lastly occurred, it was not precisely a fascinating proposal for her or the household. However trusting the horoscopes, the marriage was carried out in all glory. It turned out to be such an sad marriage that Manasa died by suicide 30 years later. Her father too had died by suicide two years earlier than her, pained to see her so depressing.

The story is shared by Manasa’s buddy, who additionally talks about her sister Maya’s* folly when it got here to horoscopes. “Maya’s was a love marriage which resulted in divorce. She blamed it on not matching horoscopes. When it was her son’s flip to get married, she adopted all the foundations and located an ideal match however inside just a few years that too resulted in a divorce!” says the buddy.

Chovva dosham is a giant ‘downside’ in horoscopes, concedes educational Praveena Kodoth who has researched extensively on dowry. She has written about how dowry funds improve due to ‘distinctive circumstances’, for a girl who’s ‘over age’ or who has a tough horoscope. 

“Horoscope compatibility was thought-about necessary. Older communists rejected the idea in horoscopes however had conceded to their kids’s needs to have them matched. Typically, mother and father have been cautious when there was an issue in horoscopes, notably chovva dosham, an astrological function that made it tough to search out companions. In such circumstances, they have been extra keen to make concessions,” she writes.

It additionally says that when horoscope readings (similar to chovva dosham) already prompted delays, alliances have been fastened with out consulting them additional. Within the discipline work Praveena did for the examine, horoscope issues figured in three poor households with “over age” girls.

The ‘Science’ of it

It’s ridiculous to assume that stars can affect a baby at their start, Lilly factors out. “There isn’t a science within the declare that the rays of stars from so many mild years away can affect a baby on the hour of its start. Folks interacting carefully with the kid have way more possibilities of having any affect on its life than a star hundreds of sunshine years away. However younger girls are so deeply fed these concepts that they’re reluctant to return house, no matter be the difficulties they face on the marital house. They assume extra about what society will say or about shedding face. This will solely change with correct training,” Lilly provides.

The ‘grahanila’ that’s now adopted by astrologers throughout weddings isn’t even an Indian science as it’s claimed, says retired professor of Physics Okay Pappootty, who has written books on astrology science like Jyothisasthrathile Oru ithihasam and Jyothishavum Jyothisasthravum.


Okay Pappootty / Credit score- Navaneeth Krishnan S / Wiki Commons

“Two thousand years in the past, it didn’t even exist in India. It was dropped at our nation by the Greeks, with the invasion by King Alexander. It was later that early texts of astrology, utilizing constellations of stars, have been discovered, attributed to the sage Garga. Then got here the Parashara Hora, a complete textual content on Vedic astrology. Later, within the sixth century AD, the Varaha Hora was written and that’s what the Kerala college of astrology follows to this present day,” Pappootty says.

There are 27 stars in Kerala astrology. A baby is alleged to be born underneath a selected star relying on the place of the moon and the star it’s closest to on the time of start. “Such a system of checking constellations and the moon’s place was initially adopted to find out time, within the days when there have been no calendars. Nothing was going to occur to the kid born at a time the moon was in an undesirable place! These have been all superstitions created by later astrologers. The shani dasha and shukra dasha have been all created like that, exploiting the blind religion of believers. Man’s future isn’t determined by planets however by society, politics, science and training,” Pappootty provides.

One other attention-grabbing incident regarding horoscopes is narrated by retired engineer Sivan. Someday within the Nineteen Seventies, two astrologers in his village in Alappuzha obtained their kids married to one another. The wedding, regardless of the grand matching of horoscopes, resulted in a divorce.

A part of organized marriage system

“Horoscopes are nonetheless half and parcel of all organized marriages. Mother and father are compelled to search out alliances for his or her younger daughters if their horoscope says that they must be married earlier than they’re 23 or they will’t for the following 10 years. Most mother and father discover {that a} horrible choice, to delay the marriage till their daughter is in her 30s. It’s part of tradition, however time and above that we escape of those practices,” says feminist advocate J Sandhya.

She has come throughout circumstances the place divorces occur regardless of the massive present of horoscope matches. She has additionally heard individuals complain later that horoscopes have been wrongly written or “adjusted” by astrologers on the time of the marriage. However, there are lots of pleased {couples} who by no means had their horoscopes ready, not to mention matched them, she provides. “The truth that each faith doesn’t observe it so strictly and nonetheless there are pleased marriages is proof that it doesn’t matter, isn’t it?” Sandhya asks.

Educational Praveena agrees. “Even when a household doesn’t consider in horoscopes or use it, one other household from whom they get a proposal might demand it. The organized marriage system is basically a market with provide and demand and either side might have to agree on sure issues,” Praveena tells TNM.

Even when it’s a love marriage, the households might settle for it solely as soon as the horoscopes match, she provides. “Households even have methods of constructing positive ‘jathakams’ of alliances they don’t like is not going to match. If an individual finds their very own companion, many households might settle for the connection provided that the latter falls of their similar social class. I do know a few totally different castes who had checked their horoscopes earlier than approaching their households to get them married. The person’s mom didn’t just like the alliance and he or she requested to verify the horoscopes once more and obtained the astrologer to say it doesn’t match,” Praveena says.

She attributes this over-dependance on horoscopes to Kerala’s society being very conservative. “Kerala’s urbanisation isn’t like a metropolitan’s. The state isn’t evenly urbanised.”

‘Psychological matches come first’

When Suresh Unnithan made his directorial debut with Jaathakam in 1989, it was not that he thought horoscopes have been unsuitable. “My movie was towards the superstitions that folks fell for due to blind religion. There have been many such circumstances round my village in Pandalam. My buddy Maneesh Shornur wrote the story and the late Lohithadas scripted it. I believed it a really related topic,” says Suresh.

Thirty-two years later, nevertheless, individuals’s perception in horoscopes has not modified a jot. As it’s, persons are simply hooked to horoscopes and astrology, and it’s at a time like this that there’s a plan to introduce astrology as a topic in universities, laments Lilly. The Indira Gandhi Nationwide Open College (IGNOU) just lately launched a postgraduate programme in astrology, which invited sharp criticism from scientists within the nation.

“When will individuals perceive that it’s the match of the minds that issues essentially the most,” Lilly asks.

Author and astrologer Praveen P Gopinath truly agrees along with her, at the same time as he sticks by the science of astrology. “In my 21 years of working as an astrologer, I’ve had many purchasers ask me to persuade their daughter or son that the individual they select astrologically as a life companion is the appropriate individual. I instantly inform them I’ll do no such factor. I do match evaluation for organized marriages. However I preserve that there isn’t any science, no astrology and no spirituality that’s larger than love,” Praveen says.

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