How is Vedic Astrology Different to Western?

Sidereal System 

Western astrology is based on a tropical system meaning that it is based on the equinoxes, whereas the Vedic astrology is based on the sidereal system which is calculated from fixed stars.

There are debates on which system is more accurate or correct, Vedic astrology’s calculations are based on fixed astronomy, which is seen to have more credibility and merit from a science/mathematical perspective.

If you have had your chart read in Western Astrology it is possible that your planets may not be in the same signs within the Vedic method as calculations are mathematically based on different coordinate views of the zodiac, as explained above.


Both systems are utilised as a self-revelation tool, Vedic astrology differs by placing a strong importance on karmic orientation. Vedic astrology uses cosmic intelligence as a tool for understanding and acknowledging the history of your soul and its opportunities, purpose, gifts and limitations. This deep recognition and insight are important to create awareness in order to reduce and transcend your karmic footprint for your soul’s evolution.


Vedic astrology has an empowering focus on how to shift, remedy and counsel difficult planet placements and transits, using mantras, yantras, gemstones, Ayurveda and yoga.

Astrology is also used as a diagnostic tool for Ayurvedic practitioners in the treatment of disease – it provides the understanding of a person’s karma which can help the healer have a deep understanding of the root cause of the disease manifestation and also help to optimise their efforts, this is a specialised field within Vedic astrology called medical astrology.

Rising Sign  

The topical system prioritises the sun sign. In Vedic astrology, the ascendant sign is the most important planet, followed by the moon and then the sun sign.

In Vedic astrology, the Ascendant sign reveals our individual’s identity (how we are perceived by others), indications of our health, wellbeing and even factors that can influence our mental health. The moon is considered important as it represents our mind and emotions, giving us awareness around our emotional needs and state of mind.

Nakshatra (Lunar Mansions) 

While both have the 12 zodiac signs, Vedic astrology further divides the 12 these zodiacs into 27 segments, relative to fixed stars which are directly connected to the moon. These 27 segments are called Nakshatras, or lunar mansions or  lunar constellations, and are said to mean a “way of approaching the divine.”

Whatever Astrology system you use, I encourage you to look at both and see which system resonates with you more. Our Sun sign, which relates to our soul are characteristics we are said to grow into, so keep this in mind in relation to your Rising/Ascendent Sign in each system. If you have identified with the Western system all your life and have a different Vedic sun sign, you may find it more understood and seen. I’m interested to know, so leave me a comment below.

- Tarra Lee

About Tarra

Tarra Lee is a Jyotish & Ayurvedic Consultant, weaving and drawing inspiration from all the Ancient Vedic sciences including Yoga, Ayurveda, Jyotish, Tantra and Vastu Shastra. Through the integrating these systems, she guides individuals to reconnect to their body wisdom and empowers them to become their own healer.

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