Functional Benefic and Functional Malefic Planets

This is one minute concept of Astrology that is necessary to understand future posts on Yogas.

Apart from being a natural benefic (Jupiter, Waxing Moon and Venus) and a natural malefic (Saturn, Mars, Rahu and Ketu), a planet can work like a functional benefic or functional malefic for a particular ascendant.

Functional Benefic - For Functional Benefic, rule is two-fold - 

  1. For any Ascendant, Lords of Trikona (Trine) houses are called Functional Benefic planets. For example, for Leo Ascendant, Trikona Houses (Houses # 1, 5 and 9) will have Leo, Sagittarius and Aries sign respectively. Leo is ruled by Sun, Sagittarius is ruled by Jupiter and Aries is ruled by Mars. Sun is anyways ascendant lord which remains the most important planet for any ascendant. So for Leo Ascendant, Jupiter and Mars become Functional Benefic planets. Regardless of the fact the Mars is a natural malefic planet, for Leo Ascendant it will work as a Functional Benefic Planet.
  2. Now, if Lords of Kendra Houses (Houses # 1, 4, 7 and 10) are friendly with the Ascendant Lord, then that planet will also become a functional benefic planet. Like for Aries Ascendant, Trikona House Lords are Mars, Sun and Jupiter but Lord of 4th house (Kendra House) is Moon (Cancer Sign) and Moon is friendly with Mars (Aries Ascendant Lord) then Moon will also get included among Functional Benefic planets, i.e. Mars, Sun and Jupiter.

Functional Malefic - Now, please go back to the post in which I described Mool-Trikona Signs for each planet ( Whenever, a planet's Mool Trikona sign is placed in 6th, 8th or 12th house (Dushthana Houses), it becomes a Functional Malefic planets. For example, for Cancer Ascendant, Sagittarius falls in the 6th house. Sagittarius is Mool-Trikona Sign of Jupiter. So, although Jupiter is Natural Benefic planet but for Cancer Ascendant, it will work as Functional Malefic planet.

Basic Nature Vs Functional Nature – First of all, understand that a Functional Malefic or Functional Benefic planet “Functions” as such for that particular chart. Also, it is not Functional Malefic or Functional Benefic for all the houses. Its role as a Functional Malefic or Functional Benefic is limited to the house which makes it a Functional Malefic or Functional Benefic.


As discussed, Jupiter is functional malefic for Cancer ascendant people as it is 6th house/Sagittarius lord. So, when a Cancer ascendant person deals with conflicts/litigation/debts/diseases etc (6th house related actions) then Jupiter will work like a Functional Malefic planet and person can have some challenges coming in due to Jupiter but for other houses of chart, Jupiter still remains a natural benefic planet and can give better results.


Likewise, a Functional Benefic planet can “Function” like a benefic planet for that particular house related activities which makes it a Functional Benefic but if same planet is Natural Malefic then in matters of other houses of chart, it will still behave like a malefic planet.


For example – For Libra ascendant, 4th house lord Saturn becomes a Functional Benefic and it can give better results as per its nature and dignity in matters of 4th house and 5th house but for other houses’ related matters in chart, Saturn will remain most malefic planet.


So, Basic Nature of a planet will always overpower or supersede the Functional Nature of that planet when it comes to deciding the whole chart.


Eventual Results – In the end, as always, dignity of planets has the last say. If a functional malefic planet is placed in good dignity (exalted, own sign, friendly sign or neutral sign) then it can still give good results. If functional malefic planet is losing dignity (enemy or debilitation) then it can give some difficulties and person may have to work hard to get better results.

Rahu and Ketu will always work as natural malefics only. They are not considered in Functional Roles as they are not full ruler/lord of any sign. They are only co-lords of Aquarius and Scorpio respectively.

Below is the list of all Functional Malefic and Functional Benefic Planets for all the Ascendants.

Functional Benefic Planets for all the Ascendants.

Aries- Moon, Sun, Jupiter.
Taurus- Mercury, Saturn.
Gemini- Saturn, Venus.
Cancer- Mars, Jupiter.
Leo- Jupiter, Mars.
Virgo- Saturn, Venus.
Libra- Mercury, Saturn.
Scorpio- Sun, Jupiter, Moon.
Sagittarius- Sun, Mars.
Capricorn- Venus, Mercury.
Aquarius- Mercury, Venus.
Pisces- Moon, Mars.

Functional Malefic Planets for all the Ascendants.

Aries- Mercury.
Taurus- Venus, Jupiter, Mars.
Gemini- None.
Cancer- Jupiter, Saturn.
Leo- Moon.
Virgo- Sun, Mars, Saturn.
Libra- Mercury.
Scorpio- Venus, Mars.
Sagittarius- Moon.
Capricorn- Sun, Jupiter.
Aquarius- Moon, Mercury.
Pisces- Sun, Saturn, Venus.


As we can see that there are a few planets which are present in both the groups. For example, for Cancer ascendant people, Jupiter is Functional Benefic and Functional Malefic both. In that case, when a Cancer ascendant person is dealing with 6th house/Sagittarius related matters, Jupiter will function like a Malefic Planet. But if a Cancer ascendant person is dealing with 9th house/Pisces related matters or any other house related matters then Jupiter will function like a Benefic Planet.


Also, when Functional Malefic is also ascendant lord, for example in cases of Scorpio ascendant (Mars) and Libra ascendant (Venus), it will play both roles. It means that these planets can give benefits of being an ascendant lord and troubles of being a 6th lord simultaneously. Everything is in addition in astrology.

As discussed, final result always depends on the sign based dignity of planets.


Hope this helps. Thanks,


Swami Premanand Bharti



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13 comments on this post Comments


2022-06-17 17:33:34

Rj - malefic results will only be for 8th house,


2022-06-17 17:32:25

E - in matters of 6th house, malefic results . in matters of 9th house, benefic results.


2022-06-17 11:59:25

Does Jupiter as functional malefic planet in Taurus ascendant placed in 2nd house (retrogate Ardra nakshatra pada 4) aspect on 6 th house will give good results of 6 th house?


2022-06-16 02:34:02

Great post! For a Cancer ascendant, if Jupiter is functional malefic and functional benefic both, but is placed in 6th house in its mool trikona, then how would we judge it?


2021-09-01 18:34:44

P - good in business, bad in relation.


2021-09-01 16:06:23

Sagittarius lagan, if 11 th/6 th Lord venus is forming vipreet raj yog in 12 th house ( Scorpio sign) and it is also conjunct with mercury, so during mercury mahadasha will venus give good or bad results?


2021-03-04 11:22:28

S - Both. When person is dealing with 6th house related matters, it is FM. When person is dealing with 9th house related matters, it is FB.


2021-03-04 03:26:29

What puzzles me is, Jupiter being the 6th lord is a functional malefic for cancer ascendant. However, being the 9th lord Jupiter is a functional Benefic. So, which one holds true?


2018-08-27 20:49:31

Thank you sir.

Vishal S Saxena - Astrologer

2018-08-27 17:02:49

@ Manasa - mixed results based on dasha and transits.


2018-08-27 14:32:49

Hii sir, will functional benefic planet gives positive results in its dasha,if it is conjunct functional malefic which is 18 degrees apart?

Vishal S Saxena - Astrologer

2018-06-13 12:03:16

@ May - As I know, this is the situation. You or anyone else can always have better knowledge, Thanks,


2018-06-13 11:19:07

Are you sure that only rahu and ketu are functional malefics for gemini ascendant? I read that others like Jupiter, Sun and Mars are functional malefics too.