Although Rupert Murdoch built a world-wide media empire from scratch, he has seemingly remained, despite being a canny and ruthless businessman, a romantic at heart. As evidence, we need only note that the 93-year-old multi-billionaire has recently been married for the fifth time, to Elena Zhukova. Indeed, Murdoch’s horoscope is a fitting example for several key principles regarding the assessment of one’s romantic nature and willingness to engage in marriage more than once.

But first, a brief overview of the media magnate’s career arc. After inheriting two newspapers and a radio station in Australia when his father died in 1952, Murdoch promptly began acquiring newspapers across Australia, in the course of which he basically invented the modern tabloid by catering to plebeian tastes – politics, sports and celebrity scandals. In due course he bought key media properties in the UK and in Asia before setting his sights on America. In the process, he gave up his Australian citizenship to become an American, and thus satisfy legal requirements to own a US television network, ie, Fox News. Eventually, he came to own well over 800 companies in 50 different countries, with a 2022 net worth of $22 Billion, making him the 31st richest person in the USA, and the 71st richest in the world.

Murdoch was born March 11, 1931, at 23h59 in Melbourne, Australia.

A quick catalog of the graha avasthas (planetary dignities) in his horoscope reveals nothing special. The Sun, Moon, Jupiter, Venus, Saturn and the lunar nodes are all ordinary. Only Mars and Mercury stand out – Mars being debilitated, Mercury moderately combust.

But even ordinary grahas can form fortuitous combinations, of which there are several in Murdoch’s horoscope. For starters, 9th lord Sun and double kendra (7th and 10th) lord Mercury associate to form two Dharma-Karma Adhipati yogas, one of which is an esteemed Raja yoga involving the lords of the 9th and 10th.

As might be expected, Murdoch has a couple of Dhana yogas. One is formed via the mutual aspect between 1st lord Jupiter and 2nd lord Saturn, the other by mutual aspect between 5th lord Mars and 11th lord Venus.

The Moon and Jupiter in mutual aspect create a Kesari yoga. And although debilitated, Mars achieves sufficient remediation from other grahas (Moon, Jupiter & Saturn) to be elevated to the status of Neechabhanga yoga, building on its previously-noted participation in a Dhana yoga.

And finally, 6th lord Venus and 12th lord Mars are in mutual aspect, meanwhile having no contact whatsoever with any other positive house lord, thus creating a Viparita Raja yoga, an essential ingredient in his ability to have overcome many professional crises on his way to the top of the world’s media empires.

Given a Rodden rating of “A” for his birth time, we can be reasonably confident when it comes to applying amsha vichara in reviewing both his personal and professional life.

Although it’s not the subject of this article, it’s worth taking a quick look at Murdoch’s D-10 (dashamsha) to review the disposition of his grahas therein. To simplify a methodology developed by astrologer-mathematician Seshadri Iyer, one can expect positive career outcomes during the dashas of grahas that occupy positive bhavas in the D-10, and negative outcomes during the dashas of grahas that occupy negative bhavas in the D-10. For the record, the kendras and trikonas in any amsha are considered positive, the “money” houses (2-11) are deemed positive-neutral, and the dusthanas (3-6-8-12) are negative. Shown below are Murdoch’s D-9 (navamsha) and D-10 (dashamsha).

For career matters, see the D-10. Murdoch began his publishing career in 1952, during the last third of his Venus dasha. Venus occupies the 11th house of the D-10. After Venus came Sun dasha (9th house), Moon (10th), Mars (2nd), Rahu (4th), Jupiter (9th), and Saturn (7th). The point to be made here is that not one single graha in his D-10 occupies a dusthana, thus providing a snapshot of a lifetime dasha sequence that is positively disposed.

By contrast, when we examine his D-9 (navamsha) for his prospects in romantic or marital matters, we see that a third of his grahas (Mars in the 3rd, Rahu in the 8th, and Venus in the 12th) presage some degree of turbulence. And in hindsight, this is pretty much what we’ve seen. With five marriages to date, and not a single spousal death among them, that means four of those marriages have ended in divorce.

However, even if Murdoch had been made privy to the astrological prognosis for his marital life, he might well have gone ahead anyway. And why, you might ask?

For starters, let’s review his natal horoscope. Dual signs on the kendras suggests something of a disposition for ambivalence, irregularity, restlessness and/or variety in the realm of personal relationships. Dual sign lord Mercury is notoriously adolescent, while Jupiter often has its sights set on “higher” matters.

Murdoch has his Moon in the lagna, associated with Saturn, aspected by Jupiter. The Moon is a romantic, but also somewhat “twitchy” in a dual sign. Meanwhile, Saturn in the lagna can suggest someone too “old” or cynical to sustain a relationship. Meanwhile, lagnesh Jupiter is under the influence of both the romantic Moon and the cynical Saturn. More significantly, however, is that dual lord Jupiter is a significator for abundance, which means both opportunity and multiplicity, ie, many relationships.

Shifting our focus to the 7th house, we see more of the same dynamic, with the influences of Moon, Jupiter and Saturn. When we examine the 7th lord Mercury, we find it seriously afflicted – made combust by its association with the Sun, but also aspected by both Mars and Saturn, meanwhile occupying a sign of Saturn. Last but not least, karaka Venus also occupies a Saturn sign, and is aspected by Mars.

All of the above, from the natal horoscope alone, suggests someone who alternates between romanticism and cynicism, who enjoys many relationship opportunities, and yet struggles to maintain such relationships.

Murdoch has now been married five times:

  • Patricia Booker, married 01 March 1956, when he was running VE-ME
  • Anna Torv, married 28 March 1967, when running MO-JU
  • Wendy Dang, married 25 June 1999, when running JU-JU
  • Jerry Hall, married 04 March 2016, when running SA-SA
  • Elena Zhukova, married 02 June 2024, when running SA-SU

If we look back at the disposition of these dasha/bhukti lords in the D-9, we can see that, with the sole exception of Venus, all marriages began in conjoined periods of grahas that occupied positive bhavas in the navamsha. And that, in a nutshell, is the key principle of amsha/dasha vichara in the Iyer methodology, that good things happen during the periods of grahas well-placed in the amsha that governs the department of life under consideration.

Looking ahead, we can reasonably assume that this will likely be Murdoch’s last marriage. He is currently running SA-SU and will then run SA-MO, all of whose period lords occupy positive houses in his D9 chart. But all bets will be off when he runs SA-MA, two natural malefics, one of which (Mars) occupies a negative house in both his D1 and D9. Rather than threatening divorce, however, the Mars bhukti that spans 2027 might simply indicate a year wherein his health takes a turn for the worse, and at roughly age 96, he will be testing the limits of his longevity.


Alan Annand is a Vedic astrologer, palmist and author. He’s a graduate of the British Faculty of Astrological Studies and was for many years their sole tutor for students in USA and Canada. After being introduced to jyotish, he was certified by the American College of Vedic Astrology, and went on to enjoy advanced instruction from Hart de Fouw. Aside from consulting and tutoring, he has long been a professional writer, straddling the corporate and creative worlds. His New Age Noir crime novels feature an astrologer protagonist whom one reviewer has dubbed “Sherlock Holmes with a horoscope.” His books on Vedic astrology – Kala Sarpa, Parivartana Yoga, and Stellar Astrology, Vols 1-4 – have been praised for the quality of their research and writing. His latest book – Kama Yoga: Love, Marriage & Sexuality in Jyotish – is a complete guide to personal relationships as seen through the lens of Vedic astrology.

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