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How to find Ishta-Devata?

Before starting with Mercury's aspect articles, I just wanted to cover this request from a client/friend about Ishta-Devata in Astrology and how we can find Ishta-Devata from Horoscope?

Let's cover this small yet very important topic on following points - 

1. Concept of Ishta-Devta. 
2. Finding Atma Karaka. 
3. Placement of Atma-Karaka in D-9. 
4. 12th house from Atma-Karaka's placement in D-9. 
5. Ishta-Devata for each planets. 

Let's cover all these points one after the other -

1. Concept of Ishta-Devta - As we have different Gods/Goddesses and their incarnations to worship, Ishta-Devata is also one of them. It is generally misunderstood as Kul-Devata but it is completely different. Kul-Devata is one and only one for the whole family and for all generations in that family. Ishta-Devata is one specific God for an individual. Ishta means Cherished or Favored and Devata means God. So, as per name, it suggests that Ishta-Devta is the most favored or important God for an individual worshiping whom can be extra beneficial. 

2. Finding Atma Karaka - First of all, we need to find Atma Karaka in birth chart. Atma Karaka is planet which has the highest degrees in birth chart, except Rahu & Ketu. So, from Sun to Saturn, whichever planet has the highest degree is Atma Karaka to person. 

3. Placement of Atma-Karaka in D-9 - Then we need to check where that Atma Karaka planet is placed in D-9 chart. Why D-9 only? Because D-9 is expansion of 9th house of chart, which is house of Religion & God. Also, D-9 shows our Righteous (Dharmic) Path of Life. So, we need to check in which house/sign Atma-Karaka is placed. Once we find that, then we can move to next step. 

4. 12th house from Atma-Karaka's placement in D-9 - After finding house/sign position of Atma Karaka in D-9, we need to see the 12th house from the house Atma Karaka is placed in D-9. Like if Atma Karaka is Sun and it is in Cancer sign in D-9, then we have to see 12th house from Cancer, i.e. Gemini. Now, follow these rules to find Ishta-Devta - 
  • If there is a planet in the 12th house from Atma karaka in D-9, God related with that planet becomes the Ishta Devata. 
  • If there are more planets than one in the 12th house from Atma karaka in D-9, we choose the planet which is strongest in Dignity, i.e. Exalted/Mool Trikon/Own/Friendly/Neutral/Enemy/Debilitated sign. God related with that planet becomes the Ishta Devata. 
  • If there is no planet in the 12th house from Atma karaka in D-9, we can see whether any planet is aspecting the 12th house from Atma karaka in D-9. If yes, then God related with that planet becomes the Ishta Devata. 
  • If no planet aspects it, we can take the Lord of 12th house from Atma karaka in D-9 as Ishta Devata.

5. Ishta-Devata for each planets - Finally, after finding the planet as discussed, we should know that which planet is related to which God to finally find out Ishta Devata. So, here it is - 

Sun– Vishnu/Rama/Shiva
Moon– Krishna/Shiva/Parvati
Mars– Hanuman/Subramanya/Sri Narasimha
Mercury– Vishnu
Jupiter– Vishnu/Sri Vamana/Dattatreya/Sai Baba
Venus– Maha Lakshmi/Parashurama/Maa Gouri
Saturn– Shani Dev/Hanuman/Kurma/Shiva/Vishnu
Rahu—Maa Durga/Varaha
Ketu– Ganesh/Matasya

Finally, I remain of opinion that one should always worship or pray to God to be thankful, not to ask for anything. Whatever is necessary for life, will always be given and if something is not necessary for life, then why we should waste our time thinking about it. 

Hope this helps. Please feel free to post comments and queries, if any. 


Vishal S Saxena – Astrologer 

Mob - 7207658536

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15 Comments on this post

  • @ Wignesh - Just like we decide the strength of planets sitting in 12th house from karakamsha by their dignity, likewise we need to see which planet among jup-mars-ketu are in good dignity to decide which one to prefer. Thanks

  • Hi Vishal, What happens if the 12th house of Karakamsa has Jupiter (9th aspect), Kethu(5th aspect) and Mars ( 8th aspect). Which planet aspect should be taken and why? Thank you Wignesh

  • @ Vikas - Ketu as Sun is in enemy sign.

  • 12 house from atmakarka is sun and ketu is conjunction in Aquarius which planet is ishta devta.

  • @ deepali - Can you pls email me birth details at Thanks,

  • Dear Sir, In my d-9 chart, in 12th house from AtmaKarka (Venus) is sign Aries however no planet is sitting there and below mentioned are aspects, Sun (Ashisatru griha) - 44 (neutral) Mars (Mitra griha) -21 (Swagriha) Jupiter (Adhimitra griha)_ - 35 (Adhimitra) Saturn (Adhimitra griha) - 36(neutral) Rahu ( Mitra griha) - 36 (Adhisatru) Can you please advice which lord to consider for Ishta Devata? Thanks

  • Ok sir ;)

  • @ deepali - be inclusive in approach. consider both.

  • Thanks for reply sir...however do we need to take into consideration full aspects or partial aspect as well?

  • @ deepali - worship whomsoever u like to. Thanks

  • Very nice article sir... however would like to share one observation regarding Ishta Devata...i am inclined to worship lord Dattatreya even before knowing concept of Ishta Devata However ishta devata Dattatreya comes only when i take Rahu as Atmakaraka... otherwise Aries i.e planet mars ( hanuman) comes as Ishta Devata.. in both cases no planet is in 12 house from karakamsha..also do we need to consider full aspects i.e 60 or 46/45 also since jhoro also list partial aspects... Thanks

  • @ Jay Both are important.

  • Tq sir. I will try to apply what u explained and see if I can understand my upcoming annual chart. One thing I can see is that Saturn in my annual chart is in scorpio and I am running venus dasha and saturn bhukti. Do I see my natal saturn on the annual chart or how sir?

  • @ Jay - Annual Chart is for events during the year. Focus on planets whose dasha you are running and transits of major planets like Saturn, Rahu, Ketu, Jupiter and if any planet is going retro during the year. That would give an idea about the kind of year you may have.

  • I downloaded a software where it shows me my annual chart So how do I read this? Do I read as an independant chart?

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