Bhava chalit chart (kundali) versus rashi (lagna) chart - what's the difference?

A chalit chart shows planets in houses (bhava). Planets occupy signs, not houses. If it's assumed that one sign completely occupies one house of 30 degrees, houses are alloted to planets in usual way, which we call the main lagna chart or rashi chart or D1 chart.

What is bhav chalit chart and what does it show?

Read bhav chalit kundali chart for predictions

Usually, a rashi (lagna) chart is created by taking the start of first house right at the beginning of rising sign or lagna rashi.

This keeps the rising ascendant degree exactly at the same location as it occurs in the rising lagna rashi. This is the usual rashi chart.

If we take the rising degree as beginning of the 1st house, then counting 30 degrees from that point will be first house. This method of counting house cusp will allocate planets to probably different houses than where they are paced in the main rashi chart (D1). This kind of allocation of planets to houses is called chalit chart (also called bhava chalit chart because is shows planets in bhavas i.e. houses).

Which one to use - rashi chart or chalit chart?

So the usual main chart that we see everywhere is called rashi chart and shows planets in rashis (signs) whereas the other type that we discussed above is chalit chart which shows planets in houses. 

What to interpret in bhava chalit chart?

Chalit chart shows how the results will eventually turn out. For example, if a planet occupies 12th house in rashi (main) chart but occupies 11th house in chalit chart, it indicates losses as general thumb rule but then eventually this loss would turn into gains at some later point.

If opposite is the case i.e. a planet occupies 11th house in rashi (birth) chart but goes to 12th in chalit chart, then general tangible gains acquired during that planet's period will eventually result in loss at a later point.

As we can see, bhava chalit chart predictions can modify rashi chart predictions in a major way, should majority of planets change house of occupation across the two charts.

Type of bhava chalit kundali

There are two variations of reckoning house cusps i.e. beginning of the house - equal and unequal sign methods. In equal sign method all signs measure equal i.e. 30 degree whereas unequal signs method gives varying signs based on latitude of the place. These astronomical/technical details are mentioned in Surya siddhanta and many other treatise eg Siddhanta Shiromani by Bhaskaracharya, etc. In typical vedic astrology scenario, equal signs are used by default but some branches eg KP systems use unequal signs.

To confuse the matters further, the above way to create chalit chart where its assumed that one sign occupies 30 degrees is called Shripati method.

There is another method which uses western Placidus method to allocate degrees to each sign by calculating the longitude/latitude of the place which is used by KP method and it's variants. I personally think this chalit chart makes more practical sense instead of Shripati method.

When to see which chart ?

I will describe a scenario here. The purpose of chalit chart is to see two planets in house if they are say, just 3 degree away but fall in two different signs. Example: Jupiter in 28 degree Cancer and Moon in 1 degree Leo. Rashi (lagna) chart will show them in different houses even though they are just 3 degree away. Chalit chart in above example will show them in same house.

Now I will describe another scenario. Let's say Jupiter is in 14 degree Cancer and Moon is in 17 degree Cancer. If rising degree is 15 degree Cancer, chalit chart will put these planets in different houses even though they are just 3 degree away in the middle of the same sign. So, we are creating the same problem which we are trying to solve (by using bhava chalit chart). Even in the previous example, if rising degree was 29 degree, then even chalit chart will put the two planets (in previous para) in different houses.

So bhava chalit can be used for independent study as an additional tool to see planets in bhavas with reference to rising degree but it's not appropriate solution to handle the above "discrepancy" i.e. two planets that are very close in degrees but in different signs.

To begin with, focus on main rashi chart and its enough to understand the concept of vargas (divisions) like navamsa D9, dreshkan D3, etc.

Just read the main chart and check the modified strength of the planets in navamsa and dreshkan. You do not need to use chalit chart at the beginning as it's a little too much to handle multiple charts for analysis. That's the way to go atleast first 6-12 months.