The Marana Karaka Avastha of Planets

The specific most malefic positions of planets capable of causing death like suffering are as follows: the Sun in 12th, the Moon in 8th, Mars & Mercury in 7th, Jupiter in 3rd, Venus in 6th, Saturn in 1st, Rahu in 9th house from Lagna (or Dasa Rasi). Such positions of planets are called “Marana Sthana” and the planets become Marana Karaka (Death Inflictors). When such death inflictors is in conjunction with or aspected by Malefics or in inimical or depression signs, great grief is sure to come.
-Pt. Sanjay Rath

Marana means death, Karaka means significator or the doer and Avastha means the State. So the term Marana Karaka Avastha would mean death-inflicting state of a planet. By now it must be clear from the quote of Pt. Sanjay Rath that when planets are placed in some specific houses of the zodiac, it attains the status of death inflictor. However, the immediate question that follows is- why shall the planet attain the status when placed in some specific houses in a horoscope.

To understand this we shall, take each planet one by one, understand their karakatva and find out why they behave as death inflictors in those positions.


Rahu is the planet that signifies adharma and hence is the primary cause of Rebirth, which is based on the misdeeds (adharma), which we had committed in our last birth. On the contrary 9th is the house of Dharma and the most important house of the Dharma Trikona as far as the duties and obligations are concerned. When the primary karaka for Adharma goes to the place of dharma, the 9th house that signify the religious shrines and dharmic places, he feels completely dejected for the crimes he has committed through out his life. The feeling that it is better to die than to live with the heavy burden of sing on his head, engrosses him completely. He becomes remorseful.

Between the two karakas for 9th or dharma, viz., Jupiter and the Sun, Sun becomes a yogi planet and does not do much harm to Rahu. However, Devaguru is agitated, when the devalayas or the place of worship is desecrated by the presence of Jupiter. Jupiter’s ire is unfathomable, when he becomes angry. Such severe beatings he gives that Rahu is taken to the state of dying. No, wonder when Jupiter gets agitated, all sins are burnt through the sacred fire or Pavitra Agni of the Devaguru.

This shall be interesting to note here that Rahu gets into debilitation in the 9th house of Natural Zodiac, ruled by Jupiter. The sign Sagittarius is again a agni-tattwa rasi, which has the power to burn all sins. This one of the reasons, why agitated Jupiter show widespread fire during the Manduka Dasa.


Chandrastama is considered very inauspicious in any horoscope. As the name suggest this happens when the Moon is placed in 8th house from Lagna. Moon is the overall karaka for the natal horoscope as Sun is the Karaka for the prenatal horoscope. This is because after we have taken birth in this world, we start working under the veil of Maya or illusion or apparent contradictions.

The body is also nothing but a product of Maya. While we identify ourselves with the body, we forget out true identity as a part of the omnipresent, omniscient and omnipotent Paramatma. The Mind (which is again a product of Maya- Moon) also makes us believe that we are not the soul but the body and gives us our own identity (Ego - feeling of I and You).

Thus being a significator of Mind and body, if Moon goes to the house of death or one of the houses Moksha Trikona, it gets a terrible shock while it faces the true identity of our soul and that we all would die one day. Such position of Moon ruins the health of the native and the mind is also adversely affected.
Hence, the Moon being the main life giving principle goes to the eighth house of death, she is thoroughly beaten up by the karaka of 8th, the Saturn, the main principle of disease and hard work.
This is again interesting to note that Moon gets debilitated in the 8th house of death of Natural Zodiac, which is opposed to the 2nd house of Sustenance.


Besides other significations, 12th house signify pleasures of Bed, signified by Venus. Sun is the protector of Dharma and hence another significator of the 9th house. Dharma falls at the places of pleasures. When the Sun goes to such places, what shall be its Avastha then?

We can see that 12th is the house of exaltation of Venus in the natural zodiac. Wherever Shukra (Sex, Passion) is strong, Sun is rendered weak, which is why Venus debilitates Sun. The natural trait of the Sun is to stay away from the materials of pleasures and perform his duty of upholding Dharma diligently. In the places of pleasures, Sun is not allowed to perform his duty.

This is a well-known fact that among shadripus, which causes the fall of dharma, the ripu of Matsarya or sex causes the greatest fall. This is why anyone who has taken birth on tithes ruled by the Sun, he should overcome the weakness signified by Venus, as per Astadala Padma Scheme.


3rd is the house of Parakrama (bravery), Maithuna (copulation) and Death. Mars is the karaka of 3rd house, showing parakrama; because it is the sign of Maithuna, Rahu gets exalted in this house in the natural Zodiac and Jaimini says 3rd is the house of death (Dinau Dine Punya).
Jupiter, being the Devaguru, by nature is a peace-loving planet who signify harmony, universal brotherhood (Vasudaiva Kutumbakam) and wisdom. When such a planet goes to the house of parakrama, he is rendered ineffective under the violent temper of Mars. This is why Jupiter gets debilitated where Mars gets exalted. He can’t withstand the violence of Mars.

Jupiter being a karaka for dharma, becomes very uncomfortable when it goes to the house of copulation. Like Sun who is rendered ineffective in the house of pleasures of Bed, Jupiter is also rendered ineffective in the house of sex.

Jupiter is again the prana of the Life force and hence also called the Jiva, where as Mars is the Mrityu karaka. When Jupiter goes to the 3rd house, the house of death, the life force diminishes, more so under the effect of Karaka Mars.

When we look at the ayana of planets we see that the ayana of Rahu is opposite to that of Jupiter. Hence wherever Rahu is strong, Jupiter is rendered weak. In the Kalachakra we see that the Kala of the Dik goveren by Jupiter, is ruled by Jupiter and hence any Jupiterian activity is prohibited in the Rahu Kala.


Jaimini has given a dictum Shasta Shukra Marana Karaka, which says Venus in the 6th becomes Marana Karaka. Why this is so?

Sixth is the house of Service and Venus is the karaka of Pleasures, the two opposites. What shall we expect when the chief karaka for pleasure is asked to serve others! In the natural zodiac, 6th is house of debilitation and the sign Virgo symbolizes a virgin (the purest). Hence at this place Venus becomes incapable to enhance its own Karakatva.

The two karakas for the 6th, Mars (Enemies) and Saturn (Servant). In the Kalachakra this is clear that Mars obstructs the ayana of Venus. Hence none of the Venusian activity shall be performed in the Mars’s Kala. Moreover Saturn signify hard work, which is not suited to pleasures and luxury seeking Venus and hence she goes to the Marana Avastha, if placed in 6th.


Saturn is the Karaka (Significator) of destruction of intelligence (Dhi) and opposed to Satya, being opposes to Jupiter and Sun respectively. Lagna stands for the intelligence and health of the native and Saturn is opposed to the karakas of the Lagna, Jupiter and Saturn. Whenever Sat goes to the first house, it can’t stand the Karakas and goes into the marana Avastha.

Now in the natural zodiac too Saturn gets debilitated in the first house Aries, where the fiery Sun gets exalted. Here Sun opposes the lethargy and sluggishness of Saturn and wants it to be fast, jovial and forces it to promote the significations of Sun. Now in mythology, Saturn represent Mahakala, the son of Sun from Chaya. Because of treachery of his mother, Sun can’t stand him and wherever Sun becomes the strong karaka, Saturn becomes weaker.


Anonymous said…
Does the MKS principle is applied with respect to Lagna or with Chandra or with Surya or with any other lagna? Most of the cases the chandra and actual lagna or other lagnas will not match each other. Which combination will take precedence over the other? please let me know.

Thank you
Ravi Shankar
Anonymous said…
Dear Sarajit,

I am novice beginning student of vedic astrology. I came across your site and found it to be informative. While going through your artciles, I came across this one.

Interesting in my chart I have 3 of these combinations:
a) Saturs (R) in lagna and debilated in navamsa
b) Venus, Lagna lord in 6rh
c) Rahu in 9th

The planets in the trines are exalted (moon in first, Mercury in 5th and Mars in 9th)

How does this combinations affect? Any thoughts?


Date: October 7, 1971
Time: 22:20:00
Time Zone: 5:30:00 (East of GMT)
Place: 78 E 49' 00", 10 N 23' 00"
Pudukkottai, India
Anonymous said…
|| Hare Rama Krushna ||

Namaste Sarajitji,

Curiously you left out Mercury from this list. Why so?

May Sri Vishnu bless us all,
Maddy said…
bro, wonderful place , feels like my home!!!! but u havent explained what happens when Budha is placed in marana karaka sthana the 7th house (libra) where he is transiting currently along with another maelific Sun . any disha from u will help. Keep up the good work

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