Astrology takes the liberty of placing each of us at the center of the universe at the moment of our birth. Our charts are a picture of the heavens, at birth, symbolically portraying our unique reality. Knowing our charts allows us to understand more clearly what we are able to do most naturally.
Thinking in terms of a play is a good analogy for understanding how a birth chart functions.
The Planets are the actors, the Signs are the costumes they wear, the Houses are the stage setting showing where the action takes place and the Aspects are the relationships between the actors. The Birth Chart is a circle, divided into twelve segments, which represent the twelve houses of astrology. Each house describes a different area of experience or activity that is common to all human beings.
The lines that divide the houses are called the houses cusps. A symbol, representing a sign of the zodiac & determined by the time and place of birth, appears on each cusp. This sign describes how we experience the activity of the house. Planets can be in any one of the twelve house and in any one of the twelve signs. When a planet is found in a house, it gives extra emphasis to the activities and experiences of the house.
The houses have been described as cycles as well as fields of experience which unfold beginning with the birth of self-awareness in the 1st house and ending with the dissolving of the ego in the 12th. ¹
Thus we find in each:
1st Emergence of Self Awareness – Our Persona
2nd Identification with Substance – Possessions & Resources
3rd Relating to the Environment – Mental Activity
4th Personal Integration – Our Foundations
5th Externalization of Oneself – Our Self-Expression
6th Self-Examination – Self-Improvement
7th Relating to Others – Forming Partnerships
8th Merging with Others – Transformation thru Relationship
9th Expansion of Awareness – Our Search for Meaning
10th Social Participation – Securing a Vocation
11th Social Reform – Social Aspirations & Ideals
12th Ending the Old Cycle & Preparing for the New – Self-Transcendence
Look at your birth chart, consider the signs at the cusps of the houses and their archetypal meanings…what do you discover?
Next month we will continue our discussion!
¹Astrology for Yourself by Douglas Bloch & Demetra George