If you misunderstand the Astrological Houses, you misunderstand important parts of your personality

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A few months ago, my friend Dario, who is starting studying his own Natal Chart, sent me a whatsapp message: –  “Hey, I have to ask you something. My 2nd house is empty, there are no planets, is that means I will never have enough money? Or that am I not capable generating richness?”

First of all, it make me smile, and then I reassured him about his attitude on financial affairs. But I also remembered that when I started learning Astrology I had the same problem with my “empty houses”,  so I searched for a deep explanation about the system of the Astrological Houses and their symbolism, which is the key to understand their psychological correspondences.

It was hard to find remarkable material about Houses, the most part was very rough and superficial, but after a long period of researches, I was able to fit all the good pieces together to understand their true mechanism.

A couple of weeks later after the message from Dario, it happened the same with my friend Carlo, who asked me about his “empty” 10th House, and 10 days ago even Giulia asked me about her “empty houses”.

So I understood that the “Houses System” is very often misunderstood or underrated by beginners, and it is normal, because they have often a superficial knowledge about it, received from some rough web articles or from those I define “profane astrologers”, and unfortunately there are many of them.

Then I’m here, because the psychological meanings of the Astrological Houses is really deep and it’s important understanding them.

They deserve a better analysis, because the informations obtained through them are really useful to complete the portrait of your own personality or the portrait of a friend, related, or others.

A Natal Chart, is a scheme representing the sky configuration of a human being and this sky configuration corresponds to the map of his psyche.

The psyche of a human being cannot be “approximative”, “superficial” or “simple”.

The psyche of a human being is very complex and deep, and the 12 Houses are often the true key to deeply understand it and to have a correct interpretation of it. 

So it’s a shame and a fatal error reducing the 12 Houses to some elementary concept, trivial words, or even wrong meanings, because Birth Chart interpretation, and then psychological interpretation,  will be surely incomplete or completely wrong.

So let’s start to understand some fundamental concepts about Astrological Houses analyzing the two frequent big mistakes profane astrologers and beginners do with them:

• Do not considering “empty Houses” because they don’t have Planets or other objects inside.

That’s a common mistake, especially for beginners that are starting interpreting birth charts: An astrological house is important or give us informations about the psyche of the person examined, only if inside the house there are planets, or other astronomical objects like Lilith, Chiron, etc. Otherwise they ignore it.

Of course, that’s wrong.

The point is that Houses ARE astrological objects , so they have to be considered like planets themselves.

In fact, the real place of Houses and the area of their deepest influence, are the Cusps, that point on the sky where they “begin”, but that point it is the true core of the House’s meaning.

If you think about it, that is the “standard treatment” for the 1st House, Ascendant, or for the 10th, Medio Coeli.

If a Planet is 2 or even 5 degrees near the Cusp of the 1st House, (Ascendant) it is considered in conjunction with it, why should not be the same with the others House’s Cusps?

Simple: It is the same.

So if on a birth chart we find, for example, Venus 3 degrees near the Cusp of the 3rd House, we have to consider it in conjunction with the 3rd House, even if Venus is on the degrees before the Cusp and then before the “official” begin of the House, Venus Is in the 3rd House.

I repeat, Cusps are the very core and so the best point of expression of the psychological meaning of the Astrological Houses.

The following degrees of the House, are part of it, sure, but their influence have to be considered not strong as on the Cusp.

Here is a Natal Chart with an example of it:

On the yellow area you can see Jupiter and the Cusp of the 11th House both in Aquarius. Jupiter is on 8°38’59’’ Aquarius, the Cusp of 11th House is on 11°31’15’’ Aquarius, so they are less than 4 degrees distant. Jupiter must be considered in conjunction with the 11th House and then, totally part of it.

That’s because as I said before, the Cusp area of the Astrological Houses are the true core of it and the place where expresses itself deeply.

How to define this area? Very simple, the 5 degrees before the Cusp of an House and the 5 degrees after it, define the area of the “House Core”. That’s a good range of tolerance.

The following degrees after the House Core are part of the House, but the influence of the House decreases progressively, until the House Core (Cusp point) of the next Astrological House.

You can see it here:

You could ask: Why is it not the same for both sides of the House Core?

That’s because Astrology, and especially Houses System, considers the planet Earth’s rotation on his axis, so the power of influence of the Houses can follow that direction only.

Now that we understood some of those concepts about Astrological Houses, we can understand that “empty houses” have to be fully considered during an interpretation of a Natal Chart, because the point on the zodiac where a House Core is placed, gives us many informations about the part of psyche that House express.

It’s like for the Planets, it is the combination between the psychological meaning of the House and the psychological traits of the Zodiac Sign where the House Core is placed, that give you the nature of that House.  

So, if the Cusp of the 3rd House is on 16° Leo, we have to take that very point to define the basic nature of The House of Learning and Communication of the person we are examining, and we have to do that even if on the Cusp there are no Planets and even if there are no planets on the rest of the House’s area, because Houses are the true projection of the personality.

And so we arrive to the second big mistake many beginners do about Astrological Houses:

• Thinking that the Astrological Houses are just “sectors of life”.

I will be very direct and clear on that point: The 12 Astrological Houses are the 12 “pillars” of the human being’s psyche and then they are the 12 expressions of it.

Every human being posses them, without exceptions, for that reason it is important considering every House Core and in which Zodiac Sign they are to understand how that specific piece of psyche projects itself.

Luminaries, Planets and Houses form the structure of the psyche and it’s the same structure for everybody, but it is their place on the Zodiac Circle that tell you how a particular structure expresses itself, the way it works, and the way it projects itself on your life.

That’s why Astrological Houses are often considered just sectors of life, but that’s really reductive, superficial and totally inaccurate.

For example, when a profane astrologer is watching a Natal Chart where the 2nd House is on Virgo and there are no planets or anything else inside, he generally says something like: “Oh, money are not important for you, and you will never have a lot”.

He act like if that part of the psyche doesn’t exist in the person examined, and he does that because he doesn’t knows or he doesn’t understands the deep nature and symbolism of the Astrological Houses.

The 2nd House it is not just “money”, that’s ridiculous, the 2nd House is the House of Concrete Values, that part of human psyche where needs are.

Need for a refuge, need for food, need for security, need for love, need for having something tangible that transmits us the sensation of safety and security, the need to have all those things that give us concrete satisfaction.

So, how could we think that a human being has not that part of psyche? And how we could reduce it in one single word like “money”?

Money are just one consequence of the projection acted by the part of the Self, Astrology calls 2nd House.

On that example, you have to focus on the Cusp Point of the 2nd House, that is in Virgo, and then on the rest of the House if it is even under another Sign, probably Libra.

After that, looking for the Ruler of the 2nd House (Venus) and then even for the Ruler of the Sign where House Core is (in this case Mercury), and only after a deep study of the Rulers positions and the Aspects (trine, square, sextile, etc.) between them and the House Core, it is possible to attempt a psychological interpretation (and I wanted to be short here), and so we obtain that piece of the psyche of a person, a piece that every person on the Earth possess.

Yes, seems complex.

Astrology is complex, because the human psyche is complex. I have to confirm that.

But, step by step, level by level, keep learning it, I assure that you will be able to see the whole wonderful big picture, and then rising your awareness. 

So every Astrological House is important, cardinal or not cardinal, with or without Planets, and understanding the deep symbolism of them, you can mastering the true psychological meanings of them.

Trying to reduce in one single word the meaning of an House it’s pretty impossible because they contain many concepts, even if they are part of the same field, but what I can say now is that those who have studied Astrosophy and the others ancient disciplines, refuses the profane classifications like: Money, health, sex, children, career, travels etc.

We can give many names to the Astrological Houses to create the better connections between the concepts they represent, and we can make many associations looking at them from different points of view.

For example, this is one of the classification of the Astrological Houses better expresses the psychological fields they belong:

As you can see, that is a perfect scheme of the structure of the Self, everybody has it, and the fields on that scheme activate every time we live an experience, we make a choice,,we formulate a thought, we feel something. So they actually create our personal reality.

If they create our reality through projection, every single piece of that structure and the interactions with others parts of psyche (luminaries, planets, points…) are responsible of how the Self perceives and then creates every sector of life.

To understand that concept better, in the following scheme you can find every part of the Self with every fundamental declaration connected with every Astrological House.

You can use it even to understand your “Main Inner Declaration” checking in which House your Sun is positioned:

Every House represents a particular and fundamental inner impulse, an impulse that can have different natures according to the Zodiac Sign where the House is placed, while Planets or other objects inside of them amplify, exalt or give some particular emphasis to them inside our psyche.

Of course, each one of those 12 concepts deserves a complete study apart, I will make a deeper analysis of them in some of the next articles.

Conclusions.

Very often, Astrological Houses are important pieces to understand the psychology of the person who is examined, because they form the complete scheme about “how he projects his inner world”, it’s the real expression of the Self, and tells you how every part of this scheme works, interacts each others, and what results it produces in real life.

Underestimating the true importance of the Astrological Houses on a Natal Chart and using a superficial knowledge about them, are mistakes that you cannot commit during an interpretation.

It is very important to beginners studying the real nature and the deep symbolism of every House under every possible point of view, especially how they are connected with Zodiac Signs and Planets and how they interact each other on the big picture, to become capable to see the complete psychological profile through the Birth Chart.

Do you want to know all the other pieces that compose your personality? Get my free guide – Know Your Planets, Know Yourself • Astrology Fundamentals – and you will understand yourself more deeply.



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  • Angel

    Does this work the same if you have 2 signs on the cusp of a house? Eg: Libra and Scorpio on Cusp of 5th? How do you interpret that?

    • iordanus

      Well, yes, it works almost the same.
      If the House Core is on the Cusp between Libra and Scorpio, the meaning of the House takes some of the basic traits of Libra, but you have to check the exact position (degrees).

      For example, If the Cusp of the 5th is on 0°53’Scorpio, the 5th House must be considered “scorpionic”, with some basic traits of Libra, especially if there are even Planets on Libra that give emphasis.
      If the Cusp of the 5th is on 28°51′ Libra, the 5th House will be more “hybrid”, we could say “20% Libra – 80% Scorpio”, but the Libra traits will be more intense in childhood or teen aging, and will become less intense during the adulthood, to become more Scorpionic.
      Houses consider that time passes and we grow, and so our psyche.

      If you want to know those concepts in deep, keep following this blog, I will produce some other free material for sure, because I want that you learn how Astrology really works.

      Thank you so much Angel.

  • This is well done. It’s time someone answered the ’empty house’ question that comes up so frequently.

    • iordanus

      Thank you so much Cheryl.

  • Alexander Seifts

    Thanks for clearing up what it means to have planets under a House! This was very clarifying!

    • Iordanus

      You’re very welcome Alexander.
      I’m glad that it has been useful to you.

  • Bernardo

    Hey, found this article on reddit. Great text, I am exactly that
    beginner who doesn’t give enough importance to Houses, so this clarifies
    a lot [=

    • Iordanus

      Thank you Bernardo, I’m glad of that.

  • Chandra Young

    I’m glad I found this sight, it has cleared up a lot of misconceptions for me. Thank you for what you do!

    • Iordanus

      You are very kind Chandra, thank you so much for your words.