houses

Full life includes empty houses

Houses are areas of life experience. Houses with placements show areas you came in giving specific focus. Your empty houses are important too and part of your life.

With an equal house chart, all areas of life are equally and wholly represented in your chart. You have all of it. You can have an empty first house and still be self aware. You can have an empty second house and still have stuff. You can have an empty seventh house and still partner.

You experience all the houses. The sign you have on the cusp of each house and the planet that rules that house give insight into that area of life even if you don’t have any planets in it. Also, your empty houses often get energized through progressions, transits and interactions with other people.

When an empty house gets activated you may find yourself surprised by new interests or feel like you’re “going through a phase.” With the 4th house you could find yourself particularly interested in cooking, researching your ancestry or changing something about your home.

Empty houses can sometimes show blind spots. For example, the first house is the zone of self. An empty first house often shows someone that doesn’t fully consider the impact on themselves or their life when they agree to something. There can be a delay in seeing it.

If you have an empty first house, it’s helpful to consciously ask yourself about the impact on you and your life when you agree to something. Give it intentional consideration. If this changes what you’re willing to do, own up to it. Looking at your Mars is helpful in understanding why the first house is empty.

If you have an empty 7th house you can still find a life partner. Many people in satisfying long lasting relationships have an empty 7th house. Likewise, people going through painful divorces or breakups often have placements in the 7th house.

When a house is empty, it just means you came in not initially investing in major life lessons in that house. With an empty 7th house, you may have a life partner, but your purpose and karmic contract do not require one.

Many people in satisfying long lasting relationships have an empty 7th house, and people going through painful divorces or breakups often have placements in the 7th house. People with an empty 9th still travel. Everyone has empty houses. Empty houses do not mean an empty life.

Understanding your whole chart, includes your empty houses. One of the beauties of an equal house chart is that all areas are fully represented. Empty houses do not equate to an emptiness in your life. We all have them.

If you are newer to astrology, the big take away from this post is to not worry about them. Having an empty 7th house doesn’t mean you can’t have a partner, an empty 9th doesn’t mean you won’t go to college or travel. Don’t sweat the empties.

As your chart progresses, empty houses get stimulated, so you will have lessons and experiences focused on that house. Where someone’s sun lands in your chart shows the area in your life where they can significantly impact your growth, so that’s another way that houses gets energized for you. Transits also can stimulate an empty house.

If you are farther along with astrology, I’m encouraging you to look at the empty houses as part of the stories in your chart. Looking at why a house is empty gives meaning and nuance to the rest of the chart. It’s too much to dig into a post, but here are a few tips.

Look at the natural sign and ruler of that house in your chart, as well as the planet that rules the sign you do have there for insight.

For example, if you have an empty first house, look at Mars in your chart as well as any Aries placements you might have. Also look at the planet ruling your rising sign, since it is the first house cusp. If you have an empty 11th house, look at Uranus, any Aquarius placements and whatever planet rules the sign on your 11th house for insight into why you left it empty.

You will often have placements in the sign that naturally rules that house, so an empty 1st with Aries placements or an empty 11th with Aquarius placements. The house could be empty, because you felt you were leaning on enough old history coming in that you didn’t need to focus your attention there this time. If you don’t have placements in this case in Aries or Aquarius, then look to the planets.

houses

Use Equal House

I use equal house, not placidus or whole sign. I strongly encourage you to use it too. It is integral to the system of astrology I use, and I believe you’ll find it’s more accurate.

Why I call whole sign whole fuckup …

In the early 1980s some folks decided that whole sign was the original house system and came up with the name. In the 1990s, Robert Hand started writing about it, though he acknowledged that it was originally not a house system per se, rather a layout of the zodiac.

In ancient times, the early astrologers looked at the planets in relationship to the zodiac, and created a map starting with the rising sign. This soon evolved into equal house, where the ascendant’s degrees and minutes set the wheel of the chart.

When the “whole sign” system emerged in the 80s and 90s, it offered a simplified way to cast a chart that addressed issues with the placidus method. Placidus causes houses to be disproportionately sized and some signs get intercepted (swallowed up). Placidus doesn’t work well at extreme latitudes.

Whole Sign eventually became trendy, because it’s easy and gives you houses that are equal and all signs are fully represented. You start with the rising sign at zero degrees and use zero degrees for every house cusp.

The problem – it messes with your placements. If your ascendant is in the first few degrees of your rising sign, it may not change any house placements. For the vast majority though, it changes something, often several things, AND you miss the significance of having a planet placed in a house ruled by another sign.

One of the drivers for me to write my book is to offer you a documented, cohesive astrology system that works. My readings are accurate and compelling because of the system I use. I’m not psychic. Everything I share with clients is in the chart.

With equal house, the ascendant degrees and minutes set the cusp for each house. All signs are fully present, every house is equal.

Also, in the system I use, the timing, geography and details of other lives shown in the chart require equal house.

houses

Empty Houses

Empty houses have value and meaning. The sign on the cusp shows the style you most often use in that area of life.

Empty houses are so interesting to me. Sometimes they show our blind spots, areas of life that have few conflicts and lessons, and parts of our lives that we kind of float in and out of oddly and easily.

Sometimes it’s more obvious why houses are empty, like when there are placements in the sign that naturally rules that house. For example, an empty sixth house with Virgo placements in the chart.

Sometimes it’s less obvious. I was talking with a friend recently about this and joked that when the house is empty and nothing is in the natural ruler, you’re screwed by blind spots. That’s not true. I have an empty second and nothing in Taurus. The whole chart always makes sense. There’s always a story and the why of an empty house is revealed just as much as those with planets.

Besides, there’s also always a way to deal with everything in the chart. In my experience, the folks that talk gloom and doom when looking at a chart just don’t understand it very well.

The crystal pictured is hiddenite. It’s a piece I’ve wanted for a while. I could see it in my mind and then for reals via VirgoGems which is perfect since the sign of Virgo seeks to make dreams real.

planets

Planets in Signs versus Houses

I just replied to someone in a discussion group. The question was how to use the interpretations for planets when they are written in the format of Saturn in Sagittarius and the 9th house, Saturn in Aquarius and the 11th house, etc. After I posted I thought, blog post! So here it is …

When you are first learning astrology, it can be frustrating when everything seems so generalized. That’s because you are learning so many basics. It’s like learning a lot of vocabulary when you are studying a foreign language. You need to learn the vocabulary, but the individual words aren’t as meaningful as the phrases, sentences, paragraphs, etc.

Each house has a natural ruler. Starting with Aries on the first and going around the 12 houses with the 12 signs. Houses are areas of life experiences, and the natural ruler is sort of the most natural style for that house.

I’m not a huge fan of descriptions that are written as having a plant in Sag or in the 9th house and discussing them as if they are the same. They aren’t, though there are some basic similarities. Let’s look at your example of Saturn in Sagittarius and in the 11th house.

As background, I do karmic astrology, so the natal chart is seen as a painting of your past life beliefs and experiences.

Saturn is time and space. It’s how we define ourselves as human. It’s our energy that deals with limits, rules, structure, and our humanity. The sign of Saturn shows you how you come into this life expressing this energy. It reflects your old history. The house of Saturn shows your current life focus. It shows the area of life that you are specifically intending to develop this energy.

Saturn in Sagittarius is going to be someone that really wants to explore their limitations and in fact blow them up a bit. These are folks that need structure that can accommodate their need for change and action. They feel a kind of security in exploration. There’s also a bit of righteousness when it comes to rules and usually Saturn in Sag wants some kind of organized religion or religious community.

That kind of energy in the 11th house is going to be someone that is going to do what I just described in group, communities, causes, politics, social structures, friendships, co-operatives etc. I would guess that in your life you will be drawn to both the safety of a group, as well as a desire to explore the limits of groups. You can get energized working for causes and would be good at grass roots organizing.

Contrast this with someone that has Saturn in Sag but in the 4th house. This person feels safe at home. Their need to test their limits is more involved with family and how their home life fits with the entirety of their life.

Sign – style of expression.
House – area of life experience.

When you read the sign description, think style, how you express the energy. When you read the house description, think about the area of life this speaks to most.

Does that help?