PhD, or Philosophiae Doctor, is the demonstration of the peak of analytical thought, research competence and knowledge depth. A candidate is required to devote three to five years, to single-minded research of his or her chosen subject, that culminates into a final dissertation and a defence of the research work in front of subject scholars. It would not be wrong to say that a 'PhD' is the crowing glory of one's academic career.
I was posed the question "Will I be able to successfully complete my PhD course?" by someone who had just just begun this journey to earning a PhD. This person is a successful professional already with many years of experience. The thought and motivation to do PhD arose rather late in 40s age category and decided to check with me if efforts would be eventually rewarded.
The houses needed for education are as follows:
2: Accumulation of knowledge
4: Prime house of education
9: Higher education
11: Gain. 11th is the catalyst that helps translate the good results of other houses quickly.
5: Intelligence and comprehension of the native
3: Primary house of written work, communication etc
The below is the birth chart of the native:
Lets analyse this using Krishnamurti Paddhati (KP) rules:
KP says that the Ascendant (ASC/ 1st house) describes the nature of the native. If the cuspal sublord (CSL) of the ASC is Mercury or Jupiter, it indicates the native's bent of mind towards studies. Saturn on the other hand suggests some obstacles in the studies. As can be see above, the ASC CSL is Saturn, this indicates that this person has seen a life with some struggles, education is not insulated from this tendency.
If the 4th CSL signifies 4 and/or 11, it shows completion of general education. The 4th CSL (above) is Moon. Moon is signifying 11 by ownership and occupation and 2 by occupation of its starlord Ketu. In line with this, the native has completed the basic education upto post graduation. If the 4th CSL had signified 3 or 8 or 12 it would have indicated failures and difficulty in education. This is not the case here and further supportive of the fact that the native has comfortably completed education upto post graduation levels.
To analyse advanced education (like PHD),
If the 9th CSL, signifies 4 or 11, it indicates completion of PhD-like levels of education
Alternatively, if the 11th CSL is signifying the 9th cusp, it also indicates advanced education. If it only signifies the 4th cusp, then regular education is indicated.
To look for specialization, we need to see the 3rd CSL and analyse if it signifies either the 4th or 9th or 11th cusp for a favourable reading.
For the native in this case, the 9th CSL is also Saturn. The planet is one of delays and struggle. Saturn is resident of the 6th cusp and owns the 5th and 6th cusp by rashi ownership. Thus the 9th CSL is not indicating either of the favorable houses 4 or 11.
The 11th CSL is Jupiter. Jupiter is the house of higher learning and wisdom. Jupiter is signifying the 4th and 7th houses by ownership and the 10th house by its own occupation. Again, we see that while 4th house of education has been signified, the 9th house needed for PhD is not.
The 3rd CSL is Mercury. Mercury is again a karaka for 'buddhi', which is a good thing. But its significations are of houses are 10, 4, 7, 3 and 8. The houses needed for specialization ie 4 and/ or 9 are not being signified.
Thus while the native's grit, determination and intelligence aided by the presence of Jupiter and Mercury as sub lords of the 11th and 3rd cusp respectively have allowed the completion of post-grad level of studies and a respectable career, KP rules do not indicate a favourable pre-disposition for PhD studies.
I decided to cross check the results using the Nadi system, which is another flavor of stellar astrology. The significators of the Nadi system are as follows:
Favourable combinations for education are: 4 11, 4 9 11 and 5 11 (especially for a PhD student). As can be seen from above, these combinations appear only in four planets: Sun, Moon, Jupiter and Mercury. The natives, Sun and Moon Dasha ended in April 2004. Currently, the Rahu dasha is on till April 2029. Rahu is a first rate malefic. Rahu is signifying 8 11 (which suggests inheritance, provident fund, insurance proceeds, etc), it is also signifying 11 12, which indicates gains after spending money, again a good combination. However, it is not signifying good education combinations.
Since a PhD course can run for 3 to 5 years, the bhuktis of Jupiter (ending May 2016), Saturn (ending April 2019) and Mercury (ending October 2021) will be relevant for us to examine:
Jupiter signifies 4 at the star level and 11 at the sub level. So Jupiter may support education.
Saturn signifies 5 6 at all levels. This is not supportive for education at all.
Mercury signifies 5 at star level and 11 at Sub level. So Mercury is supportive for education as well.
But, It is evident that a chunk of the next 3-4 years will go in Saturn Bhukti which is not positive for education. To exacerbate that is the Dasha lord, Rahu, who is also not positive for education.
It will not be wrong to say that Nadi system is conforming the results of the Krishnamurti Paddhati. PhD is extremely difficult to be attained by the native over the next 3 - 4 years.
To triple check these results, I asked the native for a number to do a horary check. The native gave the number: 45. The below is the chart and the Nadi significators:
Using KP rules once again:
9th CSL is Ketu. Ketu is signifying 6 10 8 9. It is not signifying the 4 and or 11 needed for completing advanced education.
The 11th CSL is Rahu. Rahu is signifying 12 4 2, again it is not signifying the 9th cusp which supports advanced education but only the 4th cusp which is for general education.
Looking at at the Nadi significators below for the horary chart:
Current DBA is Moon-Saturn-Rahu. Since PhD will run for 3-4 years, the Bhuktis of Mercury, Ketu and Venus become relevant to us as well.
Moon is signifying full combination of 6 8 12, this indicates failure. Solitary significations of 'good education houses' 2, at Planet and Star level, and 9, at Sub level, will not be enough to overcome 6 8 12.
Saturn or Mercury or Ketu or Venus aren't particularly strong for education either as no good education combinations of 4 11, 5 11 or 4 9 11 occur even once here.
Ketu is also the sublord of the 9th cusp of higher education. Ketu signifies 6 8 12 (failure), underlining what the natal horoscope is saying.
While the horoscope is very supportive of education up till the graduate and post graduate levels, success in PhD is NOT indicated, as per my understanding of the horoscope. It might be better for the native to invest time in more productive ventures.