Books by Stefan Stenudd:
The Houses in the Horoscope
Astrological Life Environments
In the horoscope chart, the twelve Houses are environments, fields in life where planetary energies are expressed, according to those planets and the tendency given to them by the Zodiac sign they are in. Where the planet explains what, the aspect why, and the Zodiac sign how, the House says where.
The HousesHere are the twelve Houses of the horoscope, with links to the webpage of each:
Here are the twelve Houses again, now with keywords for what part of life they describe:
ZodiacThe Houses are sort of mirrors of the twelve Zodiac signs, so that the part of life each House concerns is deducted from the quality of its corresponding Zodiac sign:
A horoscope chart, with the Houses numbered and marked as "cake slices" inside the Zodiac circle.
House systemsThere are several ways of calculating the House positions. The most established ones in western astrology are Placidus and Equal House. In the former, Houses have differing sizes, and Medium Coeli (MC) is at the cusp of the 10th House. Also, the Decendant starts the 7th House, and the IC starts the 4th House. In the latter, all Houses are of the same 30° size, as its name suggests. The MC can be anywhere from House 7 to 12, but the Descendant is always at the cusp of the 7th House.
I prefer the Equal House system, for several reasons. For example, it matches the sizes of the Zodiac signs, which are equal, and it is the oldest system, supported already by Ptolemy. Furthermore, it keeps the aspecting relations between the Houses intact - a relation that helps a lot in understanding the Houses and interpreting them in the chart.
AspectsA good example of the aspect relations between the Houses is the opposition, 180° apart. This aspect points out irreconcilable differences, opposing interests or perspectives that usually relate only as "either or".
These are the oppositions of the Houses:
2nd House - 8th House
3rd House - 9th House
4th House - 10th House
5th House - 11th House
6th House - 12th House
The opposition is present also in non-Equal House systems, since opposing Houses are the same size also there, but that is not necessarily the case with other aspects.
2nd House - 6th House - 10th House (earth)
3rd House - 7th House - 11th House (air)
4th House - 8th House - 12th House (water)
Here are the House squares:
2nd House - 5th House - 8th House - 11th House (fixed)
3rd House - 6th House - 9th House - 12th House (mutable)
2nd House - 4th House - 6th House - 8th House - 10th House - 12th House (negative)
EnvironmentSo, much of the significance of each House can be told by the characters described above, shown by the aspects and the Zodiac signs they correspond to. Still, it must be remembered that the Houses do not equal the Zodiac signs. They just carry their characters in what environment, what part of life, they relate to. Here it is combined for each House:
The Houses of the horoscope.
House positionsRemember that in the horoscope chart, the Houses can be in any other signs than those they have gotten much of their characters from. The 1st House can be in Aries, but also in any other sign of the Zodiac. The rest of the Houses follow in strict order, so a certain position of the Ascendant leads to the Houses arranging themselves accordingly.
One could say that if the Houses are indeed in their "natural" signs - 1st in Aries and so on - it would be the most agreeable position, but that is not necessarily so. When House and Zodiac sign match that well, it can tend to dim the dynamics of the chart, so that things get a bit too predictable, too typical, with little room for originality and surprise.
If the Houses are instead in signs of opposite charge - positive in negative, and the other way around - already this stimulates, gives ground for creativity. In opposing signs there is a chance to accomplish balance in one's life, in trine signs different aspects of life can run quite smoothly, whereas in square signs it can either be very constructive or a mess... It is the unique mix of the ingredients in a chart that shows personality, and what makes life an intriguing challenge.
Split signOf course, it also often happens that Houses are split between two signs - rarely are the cusps of the Houses exactly at the cusps of the Zodiac signs. This must be taken into account in the interpretation of the horoscope.
There are two major considerations to be done - that of time and that of dominance.
Time works so that the environment of a House will at first have the character of the first sign, and later on of the next sign. Their extension in time will be comparable to the share the signs have of the House. For example, if the 6th House is one third Pisces and then two thirds Aries, then that person's work will first be a bit confused, searching for a way to do it right, and then active, intense, maybe rushing it. Each new work the person gets will follow this pattern, and in the same proportions - one third of the employment according to the first sign, the rest according to the following sign.
Dominance is something less precise. If most of a House is in one sign, that sign character will have a tendency to dominate, through all time. Even more so, if one or more planets in that House are in one sign and not the other. The positions of the planets are the most important, when interpreting how things will be in the environment that House describes.
Empty HousesHouses with no planets in them signal fields of life where not that much happens, at least not very significant things. Those environments are not the most important ones in that person's life.
I'm a Swedish writer and astrologer. Apart from fiction, I've written several books about astrology and spirituality. I'm also a historian of ideas, researching the thought patterns in creation myths. Google Profile. Here's my personal website: stenudd.com
About This WebsiteWelcome to the world of astrology and horoscopes! Here you find an introduction to the basics of astrology, in-depth presentations of the Zodiac and your sun sign, astrological predictions based on the outer planets, famous horoscopes and elaborate forecasts.
Mundane AstrologyHere are also several examples of mundane astrology - astrological principles applied to institutions, countries and the whole world. This way of using astrology was in the past much more common than personal horoscopes.
Astrology BasicsThe astrology basics present the astrological components and their significance in the personal horoscope. They are the twelve Zodiac signs, the twelve planets, the twelve Houses, and the five aspects.
There are astrologers who use additional celestial bodies, as well as additional aspects. I stick to the horoscope fundamentals specified by Ptolemy, the Greek mathematician of the 2nd century CE, in his classic on astrology: Tetrabiblos. It's the primary source to western astrology.