I was born and brought up in India and currently living in USA with a wife and two children.
I have a bachelors degree from IIT, Madras and a masters degree from Rice University, Houston and live in greater Boston where I work as a firmware manager at a top semiconductor firm.
Ashish Mehta is helping big corporations to an ordinary man with his vedic knowledge of Astro-Vastu: In April 2020, while the country was still under a strict lockdown amid the COVID-19 pandemic, Ashish Mehta was spreading wisdom through his vedic knowledge on various digital platforms. Mehta is a vedic astrology and vastu expert living in Ahmedabad. Get all latest entertainment & viral.
I received 'Sanskrita Bhasha Kovida' and 'Sanskrita Bhasha Visharada' diplomas equivalent to BA degree in Sanskrit, at an age of 11. I also received 'Rashtrabhasha Praveena' diploma equivalent to BA degree in Hindi, at an age of 12.
I combine my Sanskrit knowledge with scientific temper to conduct fresh research into the teachings of rishis.
I got married in August 1993 to my wife Padmaja Bandaru. She is a Computer Science teacher at a charter school in greater Boston. She has a bachelors degree in engineering. She is active in state and national Computer Science Teachers Association activities. She is a good organizer and organizes our saamoohika (mass) Satya Narayana poojas.
My daughter Sriharini was born in February 1996. She did BS with a double major in Computer Science and Linguistics at Carnegie Mellon University and works at Microsoft in Seattle. Her hobbies include Carnatic music (south Indian classical music) and Kuchipudi dance. A few Carnatic and western pop songs sung by her can be heard/viewed here.
My son Sriharish was born in August 1998. He did BS with a major in Computer Science and a minor in Philosophy at Rutgers University. His hobbies include computer programming, music, basketball and football. He likes to compose music. You can listen to an album composed by him (and sung by a friend).
He was also briefly interested in film making. 'The Chase', a 2-minute short film made by his team, can be viewed on youtube.
There is a small story behind the name of my son. My wife wanted to give him the name of Lord Hanuman (a Hindu deity - Monkey God). My Jyotish guru suggested naming him after Lord Vishnu (another Hindu deity). My father wanted to name him after Lord Narasimha (the Lion-Man God). I wanted to name him after Lord Hayagreeva (Horse-headed God of knowledge).
My father suggested a name which satisfies all the requirements! The word 'hari' means monkey, lion, horse and Lord Vishnu and 'Sriharish' can be interpreted to mean all the four suggested names!
One of my interests is to enable anybody interested in spiritual progress to do rituals such as homa (fire ritual), pitri tarpana (oblations to ancestors) and Satya Narayana vratam by themselves. There are a lot of free resources, such as manuals, audio and video, on this website. Thousands of people are doing a daily or weekly homa by themselves around the world now, using those resources.
Though I am a Vedantin (philosopher) inherently and emphasize internal transformation over external things, I recongize the usefulness of some external rituals in facilitating internal transformation and particularly the efficacy of Fire. Apart from the traditional ritual of homa, I also teach Fire Yoga, a religion agnostic method to worship God through Fire.
My spiritual guru is Dr Manish Pandit from Pune (living in UK now - single picture on right). His guru was Sri Nakhate Maharaj from Pune (right bottom in the big picture). His guru was Yogiraj Sri Vamanrao Dattatreya Gulavani Maharaj (left bottom). His two gurus were Paramahamsa Parivrajakacharya Sri Vasudevananda Saraswati, famously known in Maharashtra as Sri Tembe Swami (top left in the picture), and Paramahamsa Parivrajakacharya Sri Loknath Tirth Swami Maharaj (top right in the picture).
I have been passionately conducting researches in India's Vedic astrology since 1993. My father Sri Pingali Venkata Subrahmanyachalapathi Rao is a brilliant astrologer. I learnt astrology from him. I learnt the basics when very young, but I always had doubts about astrology's worth. Several things did not make any sense to me. Sometimes I would be impressed with astrology and sometimes I would think it was just a superstition. I vacillated from admiring and believing in astrology to doubting the very basics of the subject.
From second half of 1993, I pursued astrology in depth and I have studied and researched many classic and modern works and schools of thought. Apart from Dr B.V. Raman's books, guidance from Pt Sanjay Rath of Sri Jagannath Center helped my progress in particular.
I am not yet satisfied that we have understood the words of rishis correctly, even in some key fundamental issues, and my research continues. Even as I continue research, I continually keep sharing the little I know.
I wrote a textbook and many articles in 'Astrological Magazine of India', 'Jyotish Digest', 'Express StarTeller' and 'Modern Astrology' magazines. I wrote a lot of research articles on internet discussion groups. I teach free weekly Jyotish classes near Boston.
Astrologers among you may be interested in my birthdata. I was born in Machilipatnam, AP, India (81 E 08, 16 N 10) on 1970 April 4 at 5:50:40 pm (IST: 5 1/2 hrs ahead of GMT). Originally recorded birthtime was 5:50 pm and I rectified it by 40 seconds. This data should be enough for astrologers among you to figure out why I became an astrologer.
There are four ways in which one may learn Vedic Astrology: Listening to the words of teachers, Books, practical application and, contemplation. Amongst these, listening to teachers and reading books is gaining knowledge externally, while practical application and contemplation are how we gain knowledge from our inner selves. Ancient civilizations have not left evidence of vast amounts of complex writing materials as we have today and so it is speculated that these civilizations largely transmitted their teachings orally from teacher to student. According to Hindu philosophy, these older civilizations were manned by individuals who were much, much more intelligent than modern man - they were using much more of their brain capacity than does the modern man who is fortunate and a 'genius' if he is able to use a mere 10% of his brain. (There are several ancient mysteries left by these civilizations that man, with all his modern genius and technology, has not been able to understand, and so this Hindu idea of our civilization, as great as it may be, having been preceded by more enlightened civilizations does find archeological support.) Oral teachings during this time were very effective and efficient as the student was 100% able to remember and understand that which their teacher instructed them in, without having to take notes or follow manuals. The modern man, in comparison, can only remember and understand a fraction of that which their teacher instructs upon first hearing. After which, the student is forced to review their notes, listen to a recording of the class and study their manuals if they hope to understand their teacher. So while oral teachings were the most efficient method of learning from another in ancient days, these days it is not necessarily the most effective manner, unless the student is able to listen again and again to the words of the teacher, which makes Audio Recordings of Classes priceless.
As ancient civilizations disappeared, complex systems of writing were developed and written materials became more abundant on account of man having a greater need for them to support their learning ability. In recent centuries, thanks to the printing press, books have been more available than ever and thus man has experienced a surge of knowledge which has ushered in the modern age. Thus, for this modern age, books, as well as course manuals, are an ideal method of transmitting knowledge.
Regardless of whether one obtains their knowledge from books or orally from teachers, they only serve as entertainment until the student contemplates what he has read or heard and makes a practical application of the principles. Contemplating the teachings and practically applying them makes the teachings one's own - at which point the student can effectively practice the teachings himself.
On account of the obvious importance of written material during this modern age, I have striven to provide the best quality Vedic Astrology books possible. My Hardback Books are the best quality books that can be produced and so they will serve the reader over and over again. All the information and techniques in my books are supported by authoritative texts and my newer books (the hardbacks) contain original Sanskrit translations that are much more literal and accurate than is found in the hastily translated books from India. What does the bible say about astrology signs.