The 12 Houses
The houses indicate where activity is happening.
"Oikos" is Greek for "eco", translating to family, dwelling, lineage, or house.
Houses mark segments of space and there are a variety of House projections (Equal, Whole, etc.) that divide in different ways.
All house projections have their merit, but my favorite to use is Campanus, for this projection takes into account complexities.
The houses are a process of unfoldment. As with our own lives, we often imprison ourselves in the mindset of division and isolation. Each house deposits their own kernels to be carried, grown upon, transformed, and decayed into the following houses.
The natal chart is a fluid, changing cycle of interdependence. The houses are a story of emergence and development as a human being. House by house, we are given insight into our innate predisposition to experiences of life and how to meet life in a given area.
In the natal chart, 4 main angles (or cusps of houses) signify central and dynamic forces of energy, and these are
the Ascendant (ASC; House 1 cusp),
the Imum Coeli (IC; House 4 cusp),
the Descendent (DSC; House 7 cusp),
and the MidHeaven (MC; House 10 cusp).
These are the 4 natural placements of cardinal or generative energy, uniquely anchored into our own charts.
These 4 directions can be the geographical cardinal points that orient us to our own sacred space.
If you do not have a planet in a certain house, this in NO way means you are not going to experience this house!!
Each and every house in your chart has their own personality and tendencies according to the Zodiac Sign connected to it. With a Sagittarius House 4, for example, it is still poignant to reflect on Sagittarian qualities of home and rootedness even if this house does not contain planets.
House of Self
Ascendant (ASC) or Rising
"Who am I?", "How do I initiate?" Identity, personality, appearance, self-determination, self-realization, impulse to initiate, new stages of beginning, threshold crossings, birth, compensating qualities, what the first thing is that you feel in the morning. Compulsive attachment to identities or masks we present, consciously or subconsciously. Any planets here want to be seen and are your life companions.
House of Resources
The forging of a more solid sense of self. Self-esteem, desire, innate wealth, values, value systems, finances, resources, how you earn your money, what you lean on, the need to defend your seperate sense of self against death and destruction, how you yearn to make yourself more stable, permanent, solid, and enduring. Signs and planets here are guidelines indicating the kinds of inherent capabilities we can develop and concretize. Desire-energy is powerful and can seem mysterious. What we value, appreciate, or desire, determines what we attract into our lives.
House of Communication
Communications, writing, speaking, media, information sharing, your mind, your mental style, how you think, symbols, language, where you learn and continue to learn, how to use language and what is "normal", early childhood development, conclusions you draw, how you're socialized, short distance travel, neighbors, siblings, and those in your immediate environment. Our belief patterns which we initially dare to not go beyond. How do you perceive or neglect your environment? What is your desire to explore, discover, and relate to life?
House of Hearth
Imum Coeli (or IC)
"Where do I come from?", "What have I been given?", "What makes me feel nurtured & safe?" Home, family, ancestry, cultural identity, your roots, stability, anchor, groundedness. How you come back to your sense of grounding, comfort. This is the lowest, deepest, most personal and private part of the chart -- the invisible center of the earth that brings us all together. Acknowledging your place in the oneness of life. How we protect ourselves from the unknown.
House of Child
Creativity, pleasure, erotic energy, playfulness, affairs of the heart, recreation, romance and courtship, gambling, speculation, your favorite pastimes and hobbies, children, authentic self-expression, your power to enchant, where you can lose track of time. The manner and style of your creative expression and how you create things. This is where we may test our wit and imagination against fate and chance. We may go over the top here. How do you want to be recognized for your specialness? How do you create romance? Are you connected with your inner child?
House of Health
Day-to-day responsibilities and wellbeing, routine, humility, craftsmanship, traditional medicine and healing, adjustments you make, your jobs, co-workers, chores, obligations, limits, priorities, unpaid service to others, your health and wellbeing, and caring for animals and dependents. Are you making use of your power and capabilities? How do you order and pattern life? Do you stick to your priorities? Here is the connection between body and mind -- what is inside surrounds us on the outside. What do you want to be doing each day, and how do you want to do it? The largest factor of our health has come to be stress. Are your mind, body, and feelings working harmoniously? This is where we become a better "channel" for being who we are.
House of Other
Descendent (or DSC)
"Who are you?" Your important relationships with social consequences, committed partnerships, expectations, your social persona, legal and contractual agreements. What you value enough to continue in relationship (whether love or rivalry), the "inner partner", "blind spots", our capacity to reflect on our interactions with others. Planets here are meant to be discovered in connection with others. This house describes the nature of partners, and unions. When House 7 is stressed, we place too much focus out there -- we idealize others and project parts of ourself. This house can reveal qualities in ourselves which we have the most difficulty owning, accepting, and being responsible for.
House of Transformation
What's happening underneath the surface. The emotional and erotic depths of relationship, usually hidden from others. The subtext or subliminal energy within relationships and the way you share power with others. Astral planes, sensitivities to power, and any hovering energies. Secrets, shadows, sex, death, intimacy, vulnerability, resentment, fears, insecurities, desires, jealousies. All the complex, sticky, heavy feels. What created these feelings? How are you energetically within relationship? Relationships can be catalysts for change. This house cleanses and regenerates through drawing to the surface (usually through relationships) unresolved problems and entanglements.
House of Journeys
Journeys into the higher mind, big visions, big questions, religion, philosophy, your meaning of life and spirit. Higher learning, codified thought structures on a collective level, religious and spiritual pursuits, teachers, mentors, gurus, long distance travel, publishing, and broadcasting. What is your relationship with religion, spirituality, and pursuing higher meaning or education? This house also indicates relationships with in-laws.
House of Calling
(Midheaven or MC)
"What does the world ask of me?" "Where am I going?" "What is my connection?" Vocation, public image, career, what you aspire to be in the world, "adulting", what you are applying yourself to build, aspirations, ambitions, physical manifestation, and the nature of our contribution to society. This is the most public part of the chart and signs and planets here are the most visible and accessible to others. What "stands out" in you? Where do you desire to gain What are your attitudes towards success, failure, and authority? Behind ambition often lurks the pressing urge and compulsion to be esteemed and acknowledged. Is your authority external or internal?
House of Beyond Self
Ideals, friends and extended networks, "non-blood" family, where we refine our contribution to society, visions, groups and organizations, social participation with causes you care for, hopes and worries about the future, group heart, group mind, our interconnectedness, village, social consciousness, how you transcend the limits and boundaries of individual seperateness.
House of Spirit
The unseen and unknown, subconscious "baggage", residue of the past, ancestral ties, archives, what is hidden away, what is withdrawn, spirit, intuition, psychic space, karma, dreams, ghosts, angels, collective energy, divine homesickness, victim identity, creative inspiration, cynicism, womb space, obscures boundaries between self and other. Any planets here will be diffusive, unbounded, and possibly invisible. This house is the vast and universal matrix of life and strong 12th houses serve as mediators and transmitters of the universal. This house indicates patterns, drives, urges, and compulsions that operate from below conscious awareness. This house wants transcendence and wholeness and yet fears and resists it. The capacity to hold on to something is not as strong as it is to slip away, disappear, and dissolve.