The origins of the Naadi Shastra (energy-channel
treatises) are shrouded in the mists of time. This marvellous
system of prediction has been used to give reliable
guidance for many centuries: knowledge about ourselves
(past and future), our relationships and our destinies.
Research shows that this system has been in use for
at least 4000 years, since the treatises were first
written (on palm leaf scrolls) in Sanscrit, the predominant
language of ancient India. The original transmission
was by oral means, before the committal of the texts
to writing. The shastras are believed to have been first
composed long ago by the Sapta Rishis (seven sages)
-- Agasthya, Kausika, Vyasa, Bohar, Bhrigu, Vasishtha
primary centre for Naadi Shastra is in Vaitheeswarankoil,
near Chidambaram in Tamil Nadu, a state in South India.
Here Lord Shiva is said to have assumed the role of
a vaidhya (a doctor), who alleviated the miseries of
his devotees. Until the 1930's, Naadi remained an ancient
legacy, hardly used or even comprehended by the majority
of Hindu Astrologers.
The preservation of the Naadi palm leaves and the translation
from Sanskrit into the Tamil language was undertaken
on a large scale during the regime of the Kings of Tanjore
(9th-13th Century AD). When the leaves started disintegrating
with age, the Tanjore rulers appointed scholars to rewrite
them on fresh ola (palm leaves). Some of the Naadi Granthas
were also translated into another South Indian language,
Telugu. The Maratha king Sarabhoji and the Chola kings
patronized these translations.
When the British left India they took with them some
of the ancient manuscripts and texts delving into Alchemy,
Ayurveda, and Rasayan, while those pertaining to occult
sciences were left behind and auctioned. The Valluvar
community, who specialized in Astrology at the time,
bought these palm leaves and made Naadi reading their
hereditary profession and means of livelihood.
Each Naadi is made up of a particular ola or palm leaf,
written in vatta ezathu, Tamil script, with a sharp,
nail-like instrument called ezuthani. The palm leaves
are preserved by rubbing peacock oil on auspicious occasions.
These palm leaves are still preserved in the Saravasti
Mahal library of Tanjore, in the South Indian state
of Tamil Nadu.
The predictions in the Naadis are in a commentary form,
though in Shiva Naadi these predictions are presented
as conversations between Lord Shiva and Mata Parvathi,
expressing concern for and blessings on their devotees.
The Granthas are a set of highly organised manuscripts
divided into sixteen chapters or kandams. These Kandams
serialize the various aspects of materialistic and spiritual
life of an individual such as family, marriage, profession,
wealth , luck etc.