One of the highlights of this year in Vedic astrology is that the great benefic Jupiter is exalted, or at its highest strength, in Cancer. Jupiter signifies both spirituality as well as spiritual teachers. While an exalted Jupiter is quite important, as a predominantly lunar based system, Vedic astrology or Jyotish, places great emphasis on the placement of the Moon. The Moon represents our emotional body. Jyotish tracks the movement of the Moon through the zodiac and the 27 lunar constellations or nakshatras. Thursday, September 18, 2014, marks a spiritually auspicious placement of the Moon. The Thursday Moon is in Pushya nakshatra.
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 ghee 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, ascendant, or Jupiter 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. What makes this Moon even more auspicious is that it falls on Thursday, known as Guruvar (the day of the Guru) in Sanskrit. Indians label this day Guru Pushya nakshatra.
The Moon is also strong today in since it is occupying 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. It is a day in which religious or spiritual practices can be heightened, especially since we are already in the time of Pitru Paksha, the period dedicated to honoring our departed ancestors.
Jupiter has moved out of Pushya nakshatra and into Ashlesha, which also has connotations with deep spiritual experiences. The Moon is in Pushya nakshatra on Thursday, September 18 beginning at 2:55 PM Pacific time.