Most people know there are 12 Signs of the Zodiac but not many are aware of the fact that there are also 12 other divisions of the horoscope- the 12 houses.
Most horoscope traditions of astrology systems divide the horoscope into a number (usually twelve) of houses whose positions depend on time and location rather than on date. If you have ever looked at your birth chart, then you already know that you have planets in some of the houses and you may also have some empty houses. The houses represent the fields of experience wherein the energies of the signs and planets operate. Rather than symbolizing just the outward experiences and environmental circumstances specified by most traditional astrology, the houses are also revealing of the inner state and of one’s personal subjective experience and attitudes. They indicate how a person functions, whether in his interactions with other people, his work or his love relationships etc.
The twelve houses in the horoscope signify different aspects of a person’s life.
The angular houses (1, 4, 7, 10) are associated with a self-activating quality and have an immediate impact on the structure of one’s life. The keyword for the angular houses is ACTION.
House 1 – House of the Self
This is the house of YOU and your character traits. It is also referred to as the Ascendant or “Lagna” in Sanskrit. It is who you are on a primordial level. It is who you are generally. When well aspected it can give fame, beauty, popularity, good health and the ability to make a good first impression. When afflicted, it can do the opposite.
The planet ruling the 1st house becomes a symbol for you in the chart. It is referred to as the “Ascendant Lord”. Its sign, house placement, and planets aspecting it, have a lot to do with your characteristics and the major karmas affecting you throughout life.
House 4 – House of the Home/Mother
The fourth house rules your home, family circle, and all matters concerning the domestic front. The 4th is an angular house so planets here will manifest physically and give power to the chart. It symbolizes among other things, the endings of life, or old age. It also symbolizes the inner life of a person.
The fourth house is the point in the sky directly below the earth or “out of sight” at the time of the native’s birth. Therefore, it symbolizes things that are literally below the native, i.e., real estate, one’s home, fixed assets. Also, any type of conveyances, such as cars, planes, boats, or bicycles. It is an angular house so signifies foundations of one’s life.
Representing the mother, the first person to contact the native and build a relationship with him, the 4th house symbolizes general happiness and well-being, upon which the native builds his general attitude to life.
It also rules academic degrees and afflictions can prevent such. Body parts ruled are chest and breasts.
House 7 – House of the Spouse
House 7 – The House of the Spouse
The 7th house is the house of desire. It is also an angular house corresponding to physical manifestation.
The 7th house, being an angular house, will give power to any planets posited within. Since planets positioned here will aspect the Ascendant, the person will draw from characteristics of that planet.
Ruling the wife/husband, look to the 7th house for clues as to the spouse’s character and appearance. As well as if the quality of the marriage and also divorce. While delineating these things, one must be careful to note the 5th house (love from spouse), the 2nd house (family life) for overall married life interpretation. Sexual passion is seen from this house.
The lord of the 7th house represents the wife, along with Venus, in a man’s chart. It will show the type of wife he will get and her general character. For a woman, along with the 7th house, Jupiter represents the husband.
7th house also denotes residence in foreign countries.
House 10 – House of the Career
The 10th house is the strongest angular house. Planets placed here gain tremendous strength and are highly significant for a person’s character and life, overpowering even the Ascendant. The 10th, being an angular house, any planets placed here will manifest in physical reality.
Look to this house for career success and fame. The 10th house is the mid heaven, or the point in the sky directly above the earth at one’s birth. Because of this, actions and phenomena associated with this house are highly visible.
The succedent houses (2, 5, 8, 11) are associated with individual desires and the areas of life we want to control and consolidate. The keyword for this type of house is SECURITY.
House 2 – House of Wealth
The 2nd House denotes the quality of family life, your income, personal financial affairs, expenses, the way you earn and spend your money. In delineating married life, it is important to note the condition of the 2nd House along with the 7th and the 5th. Body parts represented by this House are the face and teeth. Afflictions to the 2nd can cause dental problems or give facial scars. Since the 2nd rules speech, malefic in the 2nd will cause a person to be overly argumentative and want to constantly bicker. The 2nd rules writing ability and teaching. An overwhelmingly well-disposed 2nd House will create a famous writer. The quality of what a person eats and drinks can be seen here. Also, foul language and the tendency to lie is seen from this house.
House 5 – The House of Children
The 5th House rules things we think of as goodies, such as pleasure, entertainment, parties, amusement,holidays, artistic,creative, musical and cultural pursuits. This house also relates to love affairs, romance courtship, emotional experiences and your children.A person’s past life karma is seen from this House. If one does not believe in “past lives”, then you can say that a person’s inevitable life choices can be seen here. This manifests as unavoidable actions in the area of life where the 5th Lord is located. For example, if the 5th Lord is in the 3rd House, then the person has unavoidable karma linked to the arts and/or short distance travel (inner-city travel), sales, younger siblings, and/or manual dexterity. The 5th House Lord posited in the 4th House will bring inevitable Karma with one’s Mother, real estate, conveyances, and the inner life of the person.
The 5th House rules sports, speculation and gambling as well. It also rules intelligence. A well posited Mars in the 5th can create an athlete. Jupiter well fortified in the 5th can make someone brilliant or interested in religious techniques such as chanting mantras or pranayama.
House 8 – The House of Death
This is the traditional explanation of this House but can be misleading because the 8th is also a House of Life. The 8th House is considered when delineating a person’s longevity. The manner of death can be seen from this House. The 8th House rules the occult sciences, such as Astrology, Mediumship and Psychic practices. Occultism is literally “hidden knowledge”. Sometimes an active 8th House will put a person in touch with alternative realities, I have often seen them have contact with ghosts. This usually manifests when there is a malefic influence on the 8th.Chronic illnesses and accidents are seen from this house. An 8th House blessed by benefic planetary occupation or aspects will give the Native protection from serious injury. Venus in the 8th, in a man’s chart is problematic and usually indicates divorce. Because the 8th House is also a house of destruction, planets posited there can be seriously harmed as well as their significations.
House 11 – The House of Large Sums, Gains and Friends
The 11th House signifies gains from side ventures and large sums of money. When one enters a period of the 11th House Lord, or Jupiter or Saturn transit through the 11th House, that time is distinguished by financial gains or losses from other sources besides one’s daily job. It also signifies an increase or decrease in the social life.
The 11th House also rules the eldest sibling. Afflictions to such will give either a strained relationship with them or a hard life for the sibling.
The cadent houses (3, 6, 9, 12) are areas where there is input, exchange, and distribution of thoughts and observations. The keyword for these houses is LEARNING.
House 3 – The House of the Siblings
The 3rd House rules all forms of communication – mental and physical- such as mail, correspondence, newspapers etc. It also relates to the kind of mind you have, your mental interests, the performing arts, debates, thinking habits in general. The quality of the relationship or the quality of life for the siblings can be seen here. Short distance travel and inner-city travel are ruled by the 3rd House. The 3rd House rules salesmen, public relations, retail. It also rules arms, shoulders and hands. As a natural consequence, manual dexterity such as carpentry and mechanics is seen from this house. Curiosity and courage are attributes of a well-disposed 3rd House. A person who has affliction to the Third is fearful and often has more than one phobia.
House 6 – The House of Enemies
“Enemies” is a rather strong word to describe the 6th. Think of enemies as anyone who can benefit from a situation more than you can. Co-workers and people with whom you are taking a test can be thought of as “enemies” in this sense. People with a well-fortified 6th House usually make great test-takers. Benefics in the 6th House make a person very well liked so that they have no enemies. Malefic planets (Mars, the Sun, Saturn, Rahu & Ketu) are welcome in the 6th and give the person the power to defeat his or her enemies.
General health is ruled by the 6th, so benefics here will give excellent health but poor digestion. The 6th rules digestion and a malefic in the sixth (a house where malefics are welcomed) will give power to the digestive system.
House 9 – The House of Fortune
The 9th House is the most auspicious House of the 12 Houses. It provides good luck in life, higher knowledge, spirituality, and a spiritual teacher. Differing from the 5th House which is the House of Mantras and Spiritual Techniques, the 9th House provides the person with a spiritual teacher and the interest in and blessing of spirituality. The 9th House rules knowledge of the future which is considered higher knowledge.A healthy dose of Luck is seen from this House. If the 9th is afflicted, problems are not easily solved. Ruling foreigners and long-distance and foreign travel, if the 9th is afflicted, the Native has problems in these areas, such as losing luggage at the airport, problems with his/her passport, negative experiences in foreign countries, etc., etc. If the 9th is well disposed, the opposite is the case.
House 12 – The House of Enlightenment
The 12th house is the most secret, veiled, mysterious area of your horoscope. It rules private and confidential matters, hidden places or things, activities that are carried on behind the scenes or in seclusion. A horoscope in which the 12th House figures prominently, gives the native a disinterest in worldly pursuits and an interest in Enlightenment. Monks, nuns, yogis, sadhus and ascetics are ruled by the 12th House.
Captivity and seclusion are 12th House matters. Hospitals, jails and monasteries are 12th House places. When the native has severe 12th House detriment, the person is often in and out of jail.