Phala Deepika by Mantreswara: A Unique Classic on Hindu Predictive Astrology by G S Kapoor
Phaladeepika is a treatise on Hindu astrology written by Mantreswara. The text is written in lyrical Sanskrit verse comprises 865 slokas and 28 chapters. It is one of the more significant works on Hindu astrology, along with Bṛihat Parashara Hora shastra of Parashara, Brihat Jataka of Varahamihira, and Jataka Parijata of Vaidyanatha Dikshita. It deals in a most comprehensive and authoritative manner with almost all astrological aspects of human life. Mantreswara has equated a retrograde planet with an exalted planet in strength and effects even though it be in an inimical or its debilitation sign differing with Saravali which states that benefics are powerful when retrograde and cause Raja yoga (Hindu astrology) but malefic when retrograde do not confer favourable results. Very little is known about its author, Mantreswara, who is believed to have lived in the 13th century CE. He was born Markandeya Bhattathiri in a family of Namboodari Brahmins in Panchgiri village of Tirunelveli in the Indian state of Tamil Nadu. He was a devotee of Sukuntlambika Devi and was well-versed in many branches of knowledge; he had traveled to far-off places in India in search of knowledge. He had renounced the world and had finally died in Tirunelveli; his date of birth and his date of death are not known. According to one belief Mantreswara was born in Shalivati in Tamil Nadu and according to another, he was born in Kerala. Whether he lived in the 13th century or in the 16th century remains undecided. His work, Phaladeepika, though very popular in South India and from a very long time in the past available in Southern languages script-versions came to light when its original Sanskrit version was published from Kolkata around 1925. HINDU PREDICTIVE ASTROLOGY.THE PRSENT BOOK IS SO INSTRUCTIVE THAT BEGINNERS AS WELL AS ADVANCE STUDENTS OF ASTROLOGY CAN OBTAIN VERY USEFUL GUIDANCE FROM ITS STUDY.