I came across a couple of books on Meena Nadi Jyotisha by R Gopalkrishna Rao. Flipping through them it became clear why relying on Graha based analysis versus Cusp based analysis is so fraught with mistakes. To clarify, my analysis makes use of cusp significations as a primary predictive force and graha karakatwa as a secondary one. So for career I will look for DBA of planets that signify 2 6 10 11. I worry about the actual planets which constitute the DBA only later. So If Jupiter or Saturn are coming in the DBA than I might say that the person will work with large organisations. If Rahu or Ketu or Saturn are part of an overseas chart then I say say that the job will be in less developed countries. Something like that.
In graha karakatva, Saturn is always considered the planet for service, So planets associated with Saturn will suggest the type of job. The problem with relying on this is that it is so open to interpretation. Let me demonstrate.
The books I read, classify signs as per direction. So planets lying in a sign that belong to the same direction will be considered as conjunct. Those conjunct with and aspecting Saturn will determine the career part of the native.
So all the planets that fall in the EAST direction will be clubbed together and they will be aspected by all the planets that fall in the WEST direction.
Now numerous people have consulted with me over the months. I got together a list of Chartered Accountants and compiled their charts in the above format and the results were as follows:
Now readers can assess for themselves. Is there a pattern to planets that are conjunct with or aspecting Saturn? Yes! Mercury or Moon are either aspecting or conjunct with Saturn the karyaka for service. Mercury is the karyaka for business and accounting and also education while Moon is one of the royal couple (since Chartered Accountants are State-certified under an Act of the Parliament). One also sees Mars or Jupiter involved. That can be interpreted as the 'guard dog' role or the advisory role of Chartered Accountants.
But each of these planets can also be interpreted quite differently. Mars can mean armed forces or land related, Mercury can mean communication, Jupiter can mean judiciary or educational institutions and Moon can mean something as removed as a 'dairy' or travel related.
So if I know this person is a C.A., I can link all these planets and explain why he is a C.A., but given the chart it is near impossible to have any predictive ability of the chart.
It is this reason why people who rely on sign and planet karyakatwa are forced to rely so much on flowery language and mythology and frankly stories, because they need to fill their consultation time (usually it is 30 minutes) with this jargon as they are unable to predict at all.
Just yesterday someone who consulted with me the first time said that a famous astrologer charged him US$40 over and above his fee for just taking 10 minutes extra time.
This graha and sign karakatva business was okay 5000 years back when there were handful of professions; farmer, army, ruler, priest, doctor. These things can only spin stories now, not give answers.