Combust by dictionary definition it means a state of being consumed or destroyed by fire. And what if, it is a planetary energy that is being described as “Combust”? A number of questions prop up immediately, does it mean annihilation of the good qualities of the energy under combustion, does it mean a complete absence of the planet’s auspicious or adverse influences of that particular planet, etc.
What is Combustion?
Textual definitions indicate combustion to be a process when a planet travels too close to the ultimate source of fire and heat, the Sun who is deemed capable of “burning” anything and everything in its vicinity. It is further suggested that if the longitudinal distance between the Sun and the planet is less than 12°, 17°, 14°, 11°, 10° and 15° respectively for the Moon, Mars, Mercury, Jupiter, Venus and Saturn, the respective are said to be in combustion. However there are also other opinions which say that a planet has to be as close as 3° to be called effectively combust. Then there are various other views on whether the combustion is realistic when the planet is behind Sun or when it is ahead and close to Sun.
Sun is the universal Atmakaraka, the prana (life force), atman (soul), ruthukaraka (creator of the seasons) so what is it that happens when a certain planetary energy in the chart comes close to this purest form of energy? Now, how do the planets manifest themselves through a chart? They execute their strength and weaknesses through gunas, tatwas and not through their physical self. Let’s take the case when a planet is closer but behind the Sun in degrees, in this situation the planetary potencies get obscured by the karakatwas of Sun, including both their natural and chart-dependent significations. Now if the planet is close and ahead of Sun, then the planetary energies would always work as shadows with Sun’s motives being the brighter background.
Now with the jala-tatwa (watery) planets like Moon and Venus, closeness to Sun causes a sort of evaporation. So the energies of these feminine planets stays like vapour in the environment letting the purpose of Sun rule the roost. In case of Moon, this creates a mental setup wherein a person gets completely fixed on the karakatwas of Sun by losing out on emotions like sensitivity, adaptability, fluidity, popularity and receptivity. If the planet is Venus, then the Sun’s purpose is achieved at the cost of one’s passion, comforts, luxuries and other refinements. However for Moon, the conjunction effects have an amicable and satwik ambience whereas for Venus, the rajsik and unfriendly vibes get etched into the areas of life represented by both planets in the horoscope.
The fiery Mars who looks up to the Sun, when gets close enough, is like fire consuming more fire. The volcano bursts and lava flows out. The energy, aggression, logic, anger just comes to the surface trying to fulfil the king’s commands, taking any route whether right or wrong. When the akash tatwa (ether) of Jupiter is near the Sun, the sky is just illuminated with Sunlight; the Guru speaks the language of the king and percolates it down to the earth. Respect, morals, conduct, wisdom, and wealth; all such principles are in accordance with Sun’s will (as stipulated in the chart). Saturn, the stern vayu-tatwa (airy) energy gets all heated up and the unfriendly relation is revealed when the karmas refuse to work in tandem with the Sun’s desires, making a life a tough grind. Mercury is the only planet that can bear the nearing effect to the best extent. However nearness to the Sun causes Mercury to lose its effervescence, articulacy, fluency, ingenuity and stoically work to achieve Sun’s targets.
In other words Combustion means bowing to the king’s commands, what those commands are unique for every chart. However, it is also to be noted that how much the king can bend a particular energy to his own benefit depends upon his own strength due to factors like placement, lordship, avastha, other aspects and conjunctions.
Then, what does it indicate for a person? To put it in simple words it means that the purpose of the soul is above the signification (represented by the planet under combustion) in one’s life. How and to what extent the person follows and fulfils is manifested through one’s past and present karmas.
MSc Operations Research, from Delhi University