Being a lunar based system, Vedic astrology or Jyotish, always emphasizes the placement of the Moon over the placement of the Sun. The Moon represents our emotional body and Jyotish tracks the movement of the Moon through the 12 signs of the zodiac and the 27 lunar constellations or nakshatras. Each nakshatra has specific qualities attributed with it. Today, there is a full Moon occurring in Pushya nakshatra in Cancer.
Pushya nakshatra is situated from 3 degrees 20 minutes Cancer to 16 degrees 40 minutes Cancer. The Vedic calendar is also lunar based and the names of the months are linked to the nakshatra in which the full Moon occurs. We are currently in the month of Pausha. Each nakshatra has an associated symbol and presiding deity. The symbol for Pushya nakshatra is the udder of a cow. Cows are revered as sacred animals in India for their capacity to selflessly provide milk, which can also be turned into butter and yogurt.
The cow is also the only animal which will provide milk to animals which are not its own. Thus, the quality of nurturance is associated with Pushya nakshatra. This innate inclination to nurture can manifest in Pushya dominant individuals (particularly those with Moon or ascendant natally in Pushya) in a multitude of ways – physically, emotionally, spiritually, etc.
The presiding deity for Pushya nakshatra is Brihaspati, another appellation for Jupiter. In Sanskrit, Jupiter is translated as Guru. Guru is a name that is given to a (often spiritual) teacher. The prefix gu- translates as darkness and the suffix –ru translates as light. Thus a Guru is one who can take us from ignorance to enlightenment. Thus, Pushya also has the auspicious association with spiritual and religious themes.
Guru also translates as heavy, a quality (or guna) often attributed to Kapha dosha in Ayurveda. Jupiter has the greatest mass of all the planets in the solar system. Jupiter is considered to be exalted, or at its strongest point, in the sign of Cancer in Vedic astrology. The Moon is strong today in two ways: it is full and it occupies its own sign of Cancer.
Pushya nakshatra is considered the most humanitarian of all 27. Traditionally, in India, Pushya nakshatra is considered an auspicious day to see your Guru or spiritual teacher. If this is not possible, then it is a day in which religious or spiritual practices can be heightened. The full Moon greater potentiates this energy. Even more auspicious would be if the full Moon fell on Thursday (known in Sanskrit as Guruvar, or the day of the Guru). The phase of the full Moon is known as Purnima in Vedic astrology. The full Moon reaches its peak at 8:38 Pacific Time today.