What's in a name? Or a chart, for that matter? Here are two charts for a fellow named Ramana Maharshi. Ring a bell? If you recognize the name, then it says heaps and heaps. If you don't recognize the name, then it is likely just some funny foreign sounding name. Just the same way, these two charts provide key vantages in Jyotish for grasping the essential character of a person. If you know some Jyotish and recognize what the circled items stand for then, again, the "name" says a lot. Otherwise, the charts just look like some variant of a skewed tic-tac-toe game.

The goal here is not to get inundated by endless symbols and minutia that can have no practical relevance to anyone outside of an astrologer. Instead, tease out the essential few facts that make all the difference. And run with that.  

So what are the few facts here? The chart on the left indicates that this person has a strong inclination toward spiritual experience and not much else. One-sided drive, for whatever, may not be a good thing for most folks. In this case, though, the chart on the right gives two thumbs up to spiritual quests in any shape or form. And bingo, you have Ramana Maharshi, a great spiritual master from India who lived up through the middle of last century.

Would the outcome be the same if another person were born with the same chart details? Maybe but maybe not. A chart acts as a template for experience. It does not completely determine the details. Here’s where you come in. Free will factors into the equation.