Edited By – Vinayak Bhatt
Brihadjathak (BJ) by Acharya Varahamihira is the most authentic text available for practical astrology. It is very brief, terse but substantial work. The first two chapters of this marvelous work deals with the inherent characteristics and strengths of the twelve zodiac Signs, twelve houses, and the seven planets. In the next chapters he goes on hinting the results of planetary combinations (and aspects) in different signs from the time of conception of a child, and through birth to death of a person. The various other authors of major Astrological texts follow mostly the same design but give the results in more detail. Jathaka Parijatha (JP) by Vaidyanatha Deekshithar, Phaladeepika (PD) of Mantreshwara and Saravali by Kalyanavarman are a few popular epic works in this direction.
All the above treatises have given various modes/circumstances of the death of a person which happens at different planetary combinations. Here, some combinations and results are randomly selected and discussed with illustrations in actual horoscopes. It may be kindly noted that the combinations give the results attributed when the concerned planets and houses have strength. This short write-up is only illustrative and not exhaustive.
Death during day or night?
Shloka 114 , Chapter 5 , of Jathakaparijatha reads as folows:
Yadi dinabalayukthe Janmalagne Rajanyaam
Meaning: For those born in Nisha Rashis( Rashis which has strength during the night), death would happen during the day. If born in Diva Rashis (Rashi which has strength during the day), their death would happen at night. The place of death would be in the direction of the planet which has the highest “Sthanabala” out of all the planets who aspect or join the Navamsha Lord of the Lagna.
(Night Rashi or Nisha Rashis are : Vrishabha, Mesha, Karkataka, Dhanu , Makara and Mithuna . The other six are Day Rashis or Diva Rashis . BJ Chapter 1, Verse 10. )
Example 1 : Late Smt Indira Gandhi , Former Prime Minister ; DOB 19.11.1917, 23.13 hrs, Allahabad.
She was born in Karkataka (Cancer) Lagna which is a Night Rashi and her death was during the day ( 9.30 AM), when shot by the security guards near her official residence. The dictum applies here in too as the Lagna( Karkataka) itself is strong and aspected by its own Lord Chandra (Moon).
Example 2: Late Sri Rajiv Gandhi , former Prime Minister, DOB 20.08.1944, 7.02 AM , Mumbai
Simha (Leo), his Lagna is a day Rashi. He lost his life instantly due to a bomb blast at 10.10 PM, that is during night.
This dictum should not be primarily applied verbatim to every horoscope. The clue lies in the second half of the verse. If the Lagna is strong it could happen as above. Otherwise, it could happen according to the house which has the strongest planet or influence, especially Kalabala.
Combination For Painless Death or SUKHAMARANA.
Chapter sixteen of Rasisheeladhyaya of BrihadJathaka deals with the results of planetary positions in various Rashis or Signs. The results for Saturn in various Rashis are stated as follows: (Verse 32)
Swantha prathyayitho NarendraBhavane satputhrajayadhano jeevakshethragathe Arkaje …….
Here, the first phrase Swantha is derived as Su + Antha; Su means Good and Antha means end. What Mihira implies is that the native would have a good end. Thus if the son of Arka, i.e, Shani (Saturn) is in the house of Guru (Jupiter), he would have a good death, a good wife and children, recognition in the palaces of the Kings.. and so on.
If the native has Shani in Dhanu or Meena Rashi the native would have a peaceful death.
The Native of the following horoscope had Shani in Meena Rashi:
Example 3: Female:-DOB 14 Sep 1966, 1.13 AM, Kaduthuruthi, Kerala, India.
The native was a Senior Bank Executive at the peak of her career. On 3rd November 2021, She did not get up in the morning. She had passed away during sleep at her home. She was just 55.
It may be noted that Shani in this chart is very powerful being retrograde and does not receive any evil aspects. Guru is exalted and aspects Shani in D1 and in the Navamsa Shani is with Guru.
This principle is explained in the extolled work, Prashnamarga, also, Chapter 11, Verse 15:
Soumyanaamamsharasheen gathavathi Ravije swarkshathungadike vaa
Jeevarkshasthe Visheshamriyatha iha grihe Puthramithradyupetha
Meaning: If Shani is in the houses or Navamsha of Auspicious planets or own or exaltation house, especially in the houses of Guru, the native would meet death at one’s own house in the presence of children or friends.
In the above example, the native’s son and daughter in law were sleeping in the next room.
Death lying on the Ground with No Relative Around.
As against the above combination for Sukhamarana, let us examine the combination for a distressed death.
Verse 82, Chapter 5 of Jathaka Praijatha reads as follows:
Lagneshe Nidhanamshasthe Moodhe shastagathethavaa
Kshudbhadhaya cha maranam bandhuheene maheethale.
If the Lord of Lagna is in eighth Navamsha or Combust or in the sixth house the native would face death lying on the ground and suffer due to starvation and with no close relative around (to help or attend).
Example 4: Male: DOB 4.6.1958, 10.46 AM, Sirsi.
Here the Lagna Lord , Chandra is in the sixth house Dhanu. (The third criteria mentioned in the verse is present) The native was going to his house on a bike accompanied by his wife on the pillion. A fast moving bus hit the bike from behind and he fell down on the ground and died almost instantaneously. His wife, on the pillion, was thrown far away and rendered unconscious who recovered later from certain injuries. ( Though wife-a close relative- is present, she is virtually unable to help in any way). He was around 51 years then.
This shloka has been discussed by the great author Late Sri CS Patel in Chapter IX of his book “Navamsa in Astrology “ and cited the Examples of Indira Gandhi and Mahatma Gandhi. Indira Gandhi’s Chart is given above (Example 1) and we find that the Lagna is Karkataka and its Lord Chandra is Kumbha Navamsa, eighth from it. Mahatma Gandhi had Tula Lagna and the Lord Shukra is in Vrishabha Navamsa, the eighth from it. Both fell on the ground and breathed their last with no relative around.
( Example 5: Mahatma Gandhi DOB 02.10.1869, 7.20 AM, Porbandar)
Getting Involved in Mass death:
In some grave accidents and acts involving violence, several people lose their lives which can be termed mass death situations. It is not reasonable to imagine that all the victims have similar horoscopes.
JathakaParijatha, Chapter 5, Verse No 113 reads as follows:
Meaning: If Lagna Lord and eighth Lord are situated together along with large number of planets, the native gets involved in mass death situations and loses life.
Please revisit the chart of Rajiv Gandhi in example 2 above. Lagna Lord Ravi and eighth Lord Guru are together in Lagna and there are 5 planets together there. The combination is fully evident. It may be recalled that some 14 other people were also killed on the fateful night, along with Rajiv Gandhi.
The combinations given in classics explain the trends and effects and we should not look for literal replications. The combined effect is important. The following is the horoscope of Late King Birendra Bikram Shaw of Nepal:
Example 6: DOB : 29.12.1945, 11.47 AM, Katmandu.
Here the Lagna Lord Guru and the eighth Lord Shukra are not together or they are not with four or five planets. However, they exchange houses. There is the influence of 7 planets (including Lords of 1st and 8th houses) in Dhanu Rashi. On 1st June 2001, he was assassinated by his own son, and a total of 10 persons were killed instantaneously. ( Fifth house-Son.. Mars debilitated from fifth house aspects Lagna lord in eighth, who exchanges the house with eigth lord-joined by sixth lord Ravi-, who is also receiving the aspect of Mruthykaraka and 12th Lord Shani and Rahu from Mithuna )
The last example emphasizes the importance of understanding the essences of the yogas hinted in the classics and that we should not resort to verbatim application of the combinations. Several such Yogas are available in acclaimed works like Jathaparijatha, Brihadjathaka etc. I hope this write-up will enthuse the scholars to explore these classics further to understand the yogas narrated and correlate with examples and share the observations.