Houses in Astrology- Areas of Life’s Experience

astrologywheelThere are 12 houses in astrology

Think of the birth chart as a play. The actors are the planets- they move and have the most importance. The costumes are the signs of the zodiac. The houses are the scenes of the play.

Houses are a way of dividing up the birth chart into 12 segments. Each house represents an area of life’s activity.

There are various house systems used by astrologers. I use Placidus, but you may also encounter Koch (very popular in the US) and equal houses.

Your birthchart is calculated using the date, time and place of your birth.

In your chart the houses are counted from the left counter clockwise as seen in the diagram. So the first house on the left, represents the sign of the zodiac that is rising at the time of your birth.

All planets rise in the east and set in the west.

The midheaven is the zenith of the chart- the Sun at midday set for the place of the chart. The descendant is the Sun at sunset. The IC (short for Imum Coeli) is the base of the chart and would be the Sun at midnight.

It takes 24 hours for the houses to move through all 12 signs. Some signs take longer to rise than others. Virgo takes about 2 and a half hours, Pisces a mere 45 minutes. that means there are far more people in the world with Virgo rising!

The meaning of the houses:-

House Meaning in western astrology  Ruler Natural Sign
First body, self-image, appearance, persona, vitality, how you dawn on others Mars Aries
Second Money, self-esteem, self-worth, possessions, how you value yourself Venus Taurus
Third Siblings, correspondence, communication, neighbours, local network Mercury Gemini
Fourth home, mother, family, emotional defenses, roots, foundations, ancestors Moon Cancer
Fifth children, creativity, speculation, gambling, play, self expression Sun Leo
Sixth work environs, work, service, job, co-workers, health Mercury
Seventh marriage, spouse, business partner, clients, adversaries-open enemies Venus Libra
Eighth death, psychotherapy, transforming, occult, sex, other people’s money, inheritance Pluto/
Ninth travel, religion, beliefs, higher education, law, philosophy Jupiter Sagittarius
Tenth career, father, success, achievement, status, professional expression Saturn Capricorn
Eleventh friends, groups, hopes, mass media, social affinities Uranus/
Twelfth hidden strengths and weaknesses, suffering, withdrawal, inner worlds, the divine Neptune/

Derivative Houses

This is a technique that enables astrologers to locate your relatives in your birth chart.

As your mother is the 4th house, then her mother is four houses from it, counting the 4th house as the first. So her mother- your maternal grandmother is in the 7th house.

Working with the Vedic system of astrology which recognises the 9th house as father and uses whole signs as a house, this is how it works:-


House Relatives in your chart using Vedic whole signs
First House
Second House
Third House Younger siblings, father-in-law
Fourth House mother
Fifth House children, paternal grandfather
Sixth House
Seventh House spouse, maternal grandmother,
Eighth House
Ninth House father
Tenth House Mother- in- law
Eleventh House Older siblings
Twelfth House Paternal grandmother, maternal grandfather

Going back in time every ancestor can be discovered!

This information may well be useful when recognisng where Saturn is in your chart and which ancestor may have a story that you are encountering as karma in this lifetime.

For example, if  Saturn is in the 12th house clues may be found with two of your grandparents. Were they immigrants? Did they spend time in a hospital or felt outside of society?

Vedic Astrology

The meaning of the houses differs. Most importantly are the 2nd and 3rd Houses.

The mother is always the 4th. Father is the 9th but he can also be attributed to the 10th.

House Vedic astrology meaning
First House Birth, your charisma, fame, appearance, physical stature, constitution, limbs of the body, head
Second House oral traditions, early family life, voice, speech, adornments, drinking habits, face, mouth, teeth, neck, vision in general-right eye in particular,
Third House courage, the arts, manual activities, younger siblings, hearing in general, hands, shoulders, arms and lungs
Fourth House Mother, land, agriculture, happiness, vehicles, education, fixed assets, breast and physical heart
Fifth House True intelligence, wisdom discernment, counsel, past life good karma, children, romance, heart
Sixth House conflict, anxiety, health workers, debt, sport, intestines
Seventh House sexual appetite, self- employment, brokers, spouse, open enemies, residence in foreign lands, courts, divorce, kidneys
Eighth House Death, longevity, chronic illness, losses, grief, scandals, obstacles, secrets, bankruptcy, surgery, psychic abilities, research, inheritances, reproductive organs
Ninth House Father, mentors, luck, intuitive knowing, dharma, higher education, spirituality, teachers, mentors, good fortune, hips and thighs
Tenth House Career, social position, status, fame, honours, bosses, government, authority figures, knees
Eleventh House easy money, older siblings, gains from profession, friends, groups, organisations, left ear, ankles
Twelfth House Loss, suffering, sexual joys, comforts of the bed, expenses, sleep, endings, confinement (hospital) secret enemies, foreigners and foreign countries, charities, enlightenment, feet, left eye