Altair – Aquila – Sravana
Altair is the alpha star of Aquila, the Eagle. The constellation Aquila is called Garuda in India. It is part of the 21st or 22nd nakshatra Sravana, or Çravana: “the Listener, the Ear, the sense of hearing, a listening device; a lame person, one who limps.” It is of the caste Mleccha, “outcast” or “orphan”. This pertains to the caste of the working classes of India who did manual labor. Altair is an orphan cowherd peasant with an old ox in the Chinese legend of the Double Seven Festival. Altair, along with beta & gamma Aquilae form ‘The Drum’, a Chinese asterism.
Keywords: Friendly, easy-going, organized, persevering, patient, shrewd, thoughtful, listens, receptive, generous, self-sacrificing, achieves success in the end.
The current position (2012) for Altair in astrology is 1degree 49 minutes of Aquarius. It is considered to be a passive masculine nakshatra.
Altair is the Star of Learning. The goddess Sarasvati (music, speech, literacy, wisdom, logic, counselors, technicians, education, etc.) is associated with Altair. Vishnu is the god Altair is assigned to; along with beta and gamma Aquilae, they are considered to be the footprints of Lord Vishnu in the sky (limping) during his avatar incarnation as Vamana. It is also known as Açvattha, “The Fig Tree, or the Pipal; this is the type of tree that the Buddha sat under while meditating when he received enlightenment. The planetary ruler is Soma the Moon. The symbol for this asterism is the arrow or the trident. The animal is the monkey.