The Ninth House – The More You Know

9thhousePhilosophy. In-depth study and higher education. Distant journeys; long-distance travels. Spirituality.  These are the life areas which are governed by the Ninth House, commonly known as the House of Mental Exploration. This is the House which reveals the ways in which we expand our horizons, quench our thirst for knowledge, and seek adventure and meaning in our lives.

Remember how the Third House dealt with the unconscious mind, communication, and short trips (ones not requiring an overnight stay)? Well, as its opposite on the horoscope wheel, the Ninth House covers the areas of life which are in direct contrast to those of the Third House. In the Ninth House, we’ll be taking a closer look at the inner workings of the rationalizations of our conscious minds, what intrigues us and makes us tick, in addition to long-distance travel (trips requiring an overnight stay, including journeys abroad.) Languages are ruled by the Ninth House, as are people of different cultures whom you might meet — and learn from — during your lifetime, along with foreign business dealings. Are you an author, or perhaps an aspiring writer (as I am?) You’ll want to pay particular attention to the Ninth House, as it governs literary pursuits and publishing.

Some astrologers associate the Ninth House with our destiny because it has been said that “signs” and synchronicities tend to destinymanifest in this House, which serve as signals that we are indeed on the path which the Universe has intended for us. In any event, this is a fascinating House which provides us with a great deal of valuable insight into the ways in which we, as eternal souls traveling around in these temporary Earthly bodies, are able to find meaning throughout this journey we call Life.

But hold on a second; what’s this you say? Your Ninth House is a veritable ghost town, completely devoid of any planets, nodes, or asteroids. This must indicate you are destined to spend your spiritually-empty lifetime wandering the Earth, never finding any purpose or meaning to your existence; or worse, your uneducated mind, rather than expanding and learning, will eventually shrivel up like a prune as you live out your unenlightened days in a tiny abode in an even tinier town, as a close-minded recluse…right? Wrong. As I have explained in each previous House article, there are twelve Houses and ten planets (including the Sun and Moon.) Even the aforementioned uneducated, closed-minded recluse in their itty-bitty corner of their teensy-weensy town can deduce that everyone will have at least two completely empty Houses; in fact, most folks will have more than two. So what does it mean if your Ninth House is the equivalent of a vacant lot? Well, for one thing, it might indicate that the areas of life governed by this House are simply not your primary life focus…and there’s nothing wrong with that. It could also mean that these particular things are already so well-ordered that you have no need to focus on them (which must be nice.)

An empty House can be interpreted in a few different ways. The first method is to look at the sign which is the natural ruler of the House and in the case of the Ninth House, its natural ruler is Sagittarius. We would look at the qualities of the Archer and it often reveals how you approach the life areas which the Ninth House governs. The other method of interpreting a vacant House is to look at its ruling sign based on the individual’s natal chart. Let’s say your Ninth House is empty, but in your chart it is ruled by Aries. As with the previous example, we would examine the characteristics of the Ram and it would provide insight into the ways you deal with the various Ninth House life areas.

But for those of us with planets in the Ninth House, let’s take a gander at the ways in which each of their placements affect our lives on a personal level.

The Sun in the Ninth House of Mental Exploration
I like you already, Ninth House Sun person. You are someone who says what you mean and you stick by your word. This one is always looking to expand their horizons and is quite idealistic, which isn’t a bad thing at all, although it can work against them at times, causing a proverbial pie-in-the-sky outlook. Your ego is invested in your knowledge and you love, love, love to share what you know with anyone within earshot. While this enthusiasm is admirable, there’s a fine line between enlightening others and appearing to be a self-righteous know-it-all, so bear that in mind. The (fictitious) person who comes to mind when I think of someone with these qualities is The Big Bang Theory‘s Sheldon Cooper, theoretical physicist and eccentric genius, portrayed beautifully by the brilliant Jim Parsons. Sheldon knows exactly how intelligent he is, and makes no secret about it, always spouting off random factoids, which are usually met with annoyed eye-rolls by his friends and colleagues. A Sun-in-Ninth individual has an extensive thirst for learning, much of which is gained from people of different cultures or by visiting foreign countries. This one has a knack for foreign languages (Sheldon teaches himself Swedish, Finnish, and Mandarin — though not fluently — although being extremely well-versed in Klingon) and many of these folks will achieve more than one academic degree (just like Sheldon, who holds a B.S., M.S., M.A., Ph.D., and Sc.D.)

longingThe Moon in the Ninth House of Mental Exploration
There’s an old saying that goes, “wherever you go, there you are.” As tired of a cliche as it is, it’s 100 percent true. And this is a key lesson for a Ninth House Moon to master. They have a tendency to think that if only they were somewhere else they’d be happier, with a frequent longing to travel or relocate. The problem is, however, if moving or traveling truly made them happier, the desire would disappear once they made that change. But guess what: it doesn’t. It might work for a minute, but soon enough that wanderlust comes back and they realize they are the same restless, dissatisfied soul, only in different surroundings. They always seem to believe the grass is greener on the other side, but if they ever hope to achieve true contentment and happiness, they will need to water their own grass and focus on improving themselves on the inside, which is where our happiness ultimately originates. Repeat after me: there is no person, place, situation, or object on Earth that can “make” anyone happy (this includes you.) Happiness comes from within. That said, to maintain their sanity, the native should absolutely make an effort to indulge their desire to travel from time to time, enjoying a change of scenery and adventure, while simultaneously bearing in mind that they already have a home to return to. Oftentimes, a Moon-in-Ninth traveled extensively in their youth (army brat?) which gives them the enviable ability to relate to and understand people from many different cultures.

Mercury in the Ninth House of Mental Exploration
Mercury is a communicative planet and when its placement is in the House of Mental Exploration, we have a native with an insatiable appetite for knowledge. They are naturally curious, and they will frequently study a variety of subjects that interest them, not because they have to but because they genuinely want to. This one is extremely adaptable to different situations and able to quickly establish rapport with new people. The Ninth House Mercurian person is intellectually gifted and able to solve problems both quickly and effectively. They enjoy sharing philosophies and opinions with others and are truly interested in what people have to say. The native might find themselves traveling long distances in mid-life for business or health reasons. A Mercury-in-Ninth loves few things more than to inspire others, and they find it extremely rewarding when seeing someone’s life change/improve as a result of something they taught or shared with the person. However, this one can be meddlesome, often offering advice when it is neither requested nor desired. A good thing for the Ninth House Mercurian to learn to do, when tempted to offer unsolicited advice, is to instead ask the person, “would you like my advice/opinion or would you like me to just listen?” Another tendency is for the native to not practice what they preach, and/or the advice they offer is advice they themselves don’t follow. This one is also prone to making promises too quickly, which they unfortunately are unable to follow through on later.

Venus in the Ninth House of Mental Exploration
The Ninth House Venusian is frequently attracted to, or attracts, people from different cultures. This is because they are warm and able to easily adapt to folks from various backgrounds. Many natives with this Venus placement will marry abroad or marry someone from another country. A woman I once knew had this Venus placement. She was a born and bred Okie who met a man who hailed from London and happened to be working in the United States for British Airways. After a year-long courtship, she moved with him to his native Great Britain and they were married. Twenty-two years later and still happily married, she sounds as much like a Brit as her British husband and to hear that accent of hers, you would never guess she was born and raised in southern Oklahoma and once sounded as much like an Okie as I do. The Venus-in-Ninth native is not particularly needy or clingy, and they require a certain amount of freedom in a relationship or marriage so they can continue to grow as an individual and expand their horizons. Any attempt by a partner to restrict this will eventually result in the end of the relationship. At the same time, the native craves an enthusiastic partner who is as adventurous as they are and wants to explore the world around them along with them. A downside to this Venus placement is one that is similar to the Moon-in-Ninth feeling of the grass being greener on the other side, dreaming of the unattainable, which can hinder the native’s enjoyment and appreciation for what they do have. Water your own grass and focus on the wonderful things you already have in your life!  Many Ninth House Venusians receive a public honor at some time in their life.

Mars in the Ninth House of Mental Exploration
This one is highly independent, open-minded, and loves few things more than the challenge of an intelligent debate. And while they are open-minded, they do tend to dismiss too quickly the opinions of others, causing the native to appear cynical or self-righteous, particularly due to their propensity toward bluntness and being too honest. While some folks admire and are attracted to this trait, others are turned off by it.  Willing to go to great lengths to fight for a cause, the Ninth House Martian has a tendency to become fanatical in their beliefs. The native with this Mars placement loves traveling and new adventures, and also welcomes change. They are energetic and playful, especially in the bedroom. An interesting Mars-in-Ninth trait is a distinctive laugh; many times it’s like a hearty or throaty chuckle, a contagious type of laugh which causes others to laugh just by hearing it. On that note, the native does have a wicked sense of humor and is drawn to people who make them laugh as well. This one is quite enthusiastic about life, with a half-full glass of optimism and a witty remark or comeback always at the ready. When the native pursues higher education, they will almost certainly succeed financially or attain some sort of honor because of it.

Jupiter in the Ninth House of Mental Exploration
Planet of luck, expansion, and abundance, Jupiter is in its dominion in the Ninth House of Mental Exploration, as it rules the sign of Sagittarius, which is the natural ruler of this House. Sagittarius is the sign of the philosopher, and the native with this Jupiter placement is naturally philosophical, constantly seeking to gain wisdom and knowledge. This one truly enjoys learning as well as teaching what they’ve learned. They value the freedom to express themselves openly and are brutally honest at times. However, they are often an inspiration to others with their desire to continually learn, travel, and experience adventure. A Jupiter-in-Ninth frequently benefits from travel and higher education, both of which can lead to financial prosperity. In particular, success is often attained via people of foreign birth and/or foreign countries, especially in the fields of publishing, education, journalism, or sports. The native has a flair for foreign languages and an uncanny ability to express their thoughts clearly and concisely, which makes for an excellent writer or journalist.

Saturn in the Ninth House of Mental Exploration
Saturn, although it’s what I like to refer to as the schoolyard bully of planets, constantly placing obstacles and limitations in our educationpaths, is actually a practical planet. When its placement is in the Ninth House of Mental Exploration, it’s actually not all bad as we have a native who is not prone to spontaneous flights of fancy and is rather logical in their thinking. They seriously ponder questions of philosophy and spirituality. On the other hand, this one is also somewhat closed-minded, sometimes even cynical and overly conservative…and those aren’t good things. Now, practicality is an awesome character trait to have, so kudos to you, Saturn-in-Ninth; however, keep in mind that without new ideas, our world would literally cease to advance in every imaginable way, so moderation is key here. While this one does have a desire to learn more, they are often way too quick to reject the same new ideas which could open up a world of exciting possibilities, either because they are threatened by change or they fear it. These are the “old school” people with the motto “if it ain’t broke, don’t fix it.” The Ninth House Saturnian might have experienced obstacles to receiving an education, be it because they dropped out of high school for one reason or another, or perhaps they couldn’t afford a college education. This is often part of the reason for the native’s resistance to the new and improved. I’m not implying that these folks are uneducated or stupid; I am simply saying that if their access to an education was limited in some way, for whatever reason, they are a bit more closed-off to learning as a result than they otherwise might have been. Connections with older people of foreign birth often prove beneficial to the Saturn-in-Ninth person. My younger son, a Taurus cusp, has this Saturn placement. It pains me to say that he has definitely had obstacles in receiving an education. First off, he has Asperger Syndrome (AS), with which he wasn’t diagnosed until he was a nearly-16 year-old high school sophomore; his education in the years leading up to that point had educators labeling him as a “behavioral problem” with a “learning disability” who was “uninterested in learning,” and each year brought yet another IEP which set goals for both his grades and behavior. It wasn’t until his diagnosis that we discovered not only did he not have a learning disability, he had an IQ of 156 (you heard me) and his “behavior” was due to undiagnosed, ergo untreated, AS. Because of this, my son was robbed of a proper education, which should have included programs such as occupational therapy in his curriculum, and I am still bitter about this. But that is a whole ‘nother article, another time…

Uranus in the Ninth House of Mental Exploration
Weirdo planet Uranus in the Ninth House of Mental Exploration gives an individual who is drawn to unusual areas of study and unorthodox views. Long trips seem to come up suddenly or spontaneously, as Uranus is not known for planning anything. This one is one of the more open-minded people in the zodiac, always up for new adventures and ideas and seeking ways to expand their minds: the more, the better. A few of their passions include reading — they love higher thinking and learning as much as they possibly can — as well as coming up with new, inventive philosophies or ideas that are bound to be seen as radical or strange by more conservative folks who, by the way, make the Uranus-in-Ninth native almost feel claustrophobic. By nature, a person with this Uranus placement will test the boundaries of society and be rebellious simply for the sake of being different. This one is uninterested in the conventional or traditional; they pride themselves on being unlike anyone you’ve ever before known. One of my closest friends has this Uranus placement. She’s an Aquarius, which is ruled by Uranus, so she is basically doubly unusual and a bit eccentric as a Ninth House Uranian. She is one of the most open-minded people I’ve ever met, is constantly seeking to expand her mind and gain new knowledge, and describes herself as “woo-woo” in her belief systems. Conservative individuals definitely cause her to feel uncomfortable; in fact, she once stated to me, and I quote verbatim, “when I’m around someone I don’t know, I’m ill at ease until I hear them curse…then I’m okay because I know they’re cool and I can relax.” And she is absolutely, without question, unlike anyone I’ve ever before known.

Neptune in the Ninth House of Mental Exploration
If you’ve read any of my other articles, you know that Neptune and I have issues with one another. Neptune is the planet of illusion and rules the sign of Pisces, which is my Ascendant…but I digress. Anywho, Neptune’s effect wherever it is placed in the natal chart is to place rose-colored glasses over the eyes of the native, seeing and hearing only what one wishes to see or hear. In other words: D-E-N-I-A-L. When Neptune is in the Ninth House of Mental Exploration, we have a native who believes anything is possible and has unshakable faith that the unattainable will be attained. And what’s so wrong with that, you ask? A fair question, to which I answer that while it’s not all bad and certainly this “optimism” — for lack of a better word — can lead to wonderful things manifesting in the life of the individual, it can also lead to them believing things to be one way when the fact is, they simply are not. They will deny the truth even when concrete evidence is plunked down right in front of their face, which inevitably leads to the day when Neptune-in-Ninth can no longer deny the facts and that’s when they spiral into the deep depression to which they are already predisposed. Avoidance of reality is generally not mentally healthy. The native relies too much on things magically happening on their own “someday,” and their faith is of the blind variety; many times, they aren’t even sure whey they believe in what they do. This makes them easy prey for cults and controversial religious groups. On another note, the Ninth House Neptune individual is incredibly sensitive and sympathetic to stories of hard luck and the plight of others, even to the point of taking on the problems of others as their own to solve. The lesson for this compassionate, generous soul is that while it’s wonderful to genuinely want to help others, they need to learn to take their emotions out of the equation so they can offer assistance without draining their own spirit in the process. This one makes an excellent therapist, teacher, or counselor. I have this Neptune placement. While I’m not a professional counselor, I am inevitably the one whom friends call upon when they need to vent or need help with a personal issue…and I’m happy to help. I also admit to absorbing their problems as if they were my own, the wheels in my head constantly spinning, trying to think of solutions that might actually help them. I also own several metaphorical pairs of rose-colored glasses, and I can honestly say that about 99.9 percent of this entire interpretation is accurate for me. But to continue, these natives are also extremely persuasive and able to creatively win others to their cause, which can lead to success in the field of sales or marketing. When seeking higher education, the Neptune-in-Ninth is often confused about they want to do and because they often become lost in their own daydreams, with their heads seemingly in the clouds, it’s hard for them to muster the discipline required to effectively study and earn the diploma or degree they seek. Of particular note, the native is prone to obstacles or difficulties when traveling abroad.

arguePluto in the NInth House of Mental Exploration
Wherever Pluto is placed in the natal chart, it imparts intensity, obsession, and an extreme, all-or-nothing outlook. In the Ninth House of Mental Exploration, Pluto’s influence on the native with this placement gives a strong urge to uncover the hidden, to discover the truth. Because they are usually firmly attached to their beliefs, debates can quickly turn into heated arguments, and a Ninth House Pluto will never enter into such a debate unless they are absolutely certain they have proven facts to support their viewpoints. Creatively persuasive and intelligent, the Pluto-in-Ninth person is fixed in their opinions, suspicious, and is seemingly constantly probing for what lies beneath. Don’t even try to pull the wool over the eyes of this one. They will see right through you and I promise you, you’ll never hear the end of it. While they can be obsessive about trying to convert others to their point of view, they truly do have a desire to change things for the better. This one abhors hypocrisy and blind followers of any belief; ignorance is a cardinal sin for the Pluto-in-Ninth. The native probably has some quite unusual experiences during their lifetime due to their intense craving for adventure. They are genuinely interested in learning as much as possible about different cultures, philosophies, and religions, any or all of which can lead to intense, life-altering experiences. This one has some unorthodox, original ideas and points of view which make them ideal lecturers, speakers, or teachers.

The Official Venus In Retrograde Survival Guide: Do’s, Don’ts, and FAQs

It’s coming. And I’m here to help you prepare for it!

On Saturday, December 21, 2013 at 4:52pm ET, Venus will enter what we call stationary retrograde. It will remain in retrograde until Friday, January 31, 2014 at 3:52pm ET when it goes back into stationary direct, eventually leaving the retrograde zone altogether on Tuesday, March 4, 2013 at 11:29am ET.

venusretrograde2013

So, would someone please explain exactly what the friggity frack all this means?!

Why, I’d be happy to. Here are some of the most frequently asked questions about the upcoming Venus retrograde, with answers in easy-to-understand layman’s terms, without any bullshit astrology jargon. You’re welcome.

What does retrograde mean?
The word retrograde is an adjective meaning “directed or moving backward.”

If Venus is retrograde, does that mean it is literally moving in reverse?
No. When Venus (or any planet, for that matter) is in retrograde, it only appears to be moving backward. All planets orbit the Sun at a continuous speed, never slowing down or reversing.

Then how is Venus able to be retrograde?
When a planet such as Venus is said to be retrograde, it is simply an illusion from our vantage point here on Earth. Because the Earth is also orbiting the Sun, but at a different speed than the other planets, every so often it creates the illusion of Venus moving backward, or retrograde, in the sky. So although Venus looks like it is moving backward, it’s just an illusion.

How often does Venus become retrograde?
Venus is retrograde for roughly 40 days, give or take a few days, every 18-20 months.

What sign is Venus going to be in while it’s in retrograde this time?
When Venus becomes retrograde on December 21, 2013 it will be in the sign of Capricorn and will remain there until February 1, 2014 when it enters the sign of Aquarius.

What kinds of effects can happen on a personal level when a planet is retrograde?
Generally speaking, when a planet is retrograde, as it appears to move backward it brings us the opportunity to reflect back upon and complete unfinished business; which kind of unfinished business depends upon the specific planet in retrograde. Alternatively, certain things may suddenly seem less urgent and we might feel like putting those things off for a while.

What kinds of effects can I expect to see in my life when Venus is retrograde?
In the case of Venus, which governs love, beauty, money, and material possessions, these issues might be relegated to the back burner for the duration of the retrograde, meaning we might not feel a need to focus on those areas during that time. In many cases, the areas of life ruled by Venus simply seem less important during a retrograde. Sometimes, our loving feelings may seem as if they’ve been muted for a time. It’s not that we no longer have feelings of love for our partner or spouse or anyone else, it’s just that those feelings might not take precedence during the retrograde.

In some cases, unresolved former relationships or issues with former lovers might unexpectedly crop back up, signifying a need for closure. Venus in retrograde is an ideal time to finally tie up those nagging loose ends so that any unfinished business can be completed, or even perhaps so that the former loved one can be let go. Other times, it can suggest clearing the air so that it can be determined whether or not there is still love between you and your former partner. This doesn’t always indicate a reconciliation will occur, but you never know…

In a present relationship, Venus in retrograde tends to awaken old issues which might have previously been a bone of contention between the two of you. Now is the perfect time for both of you to get your feelings out in the open and settle things for good. Venus in retrograde gives us a chance to work through unresolved relationship issues, drop them once and for all, and start over with a clean slate, allowing us to grow in our love.

Is there anything I should do or avoid doing while Venus is retrograde?
Great question! Here are some helpful suggestions for a smooth Venus retrograde:
gavelDO…
⦁ Try to postpone any court dates involving monetary settlements until after 1/31/2014; otherwise, things could move along much more slowly
⦁ Postpone any visits to the plastic surgeon until after 1/31/2014 (for same reasons below regarding new clothes and new hairstyles)
⦁ Buy flea market or auction items where you know the actual value of the items but the seller might not, this is a great time for bargains

DON’T!
badhaircut⦁ Buy new clothes. You’ll be dissatisfied with most of what you purchase because your idea of beauty/style is somewhat skewed during Venus retrograde
⦁ Experiment with new hairstyles or hair colors: trust me on this. Because your sense of beauty is a little off-kilter during Venus retrograde, you will probably regret any changes you make
⦁ Make major relationship decisions during the Venus retrograde (i.e.; don’t end or begin a relationship, don’t get engaged or married)…this is a time for reflection, not action
⦁ Issue any ultimatums to a current partner during this time (incidentally, ultimatums are rarely a good, or even effective idea…)
⦁ Overindulge in food and drink! Venus rules pleasure, and when retrograde, it can make it all too easy to fall into bad eating habits…which will only serve to lower your self-esteem
⦁ Start a business or make new investments
⦁ Make any major purchases or go on a spending spree
⦁ Sign any contracts
⦁ Contact an ex or former friend, simply for the sake of nostalgia or hopes of rekindling a relationship

After January 31, 2014, when will Venus be retrograde again?
Venus will be retrograde again on July 25, 2015 through September 6, 2015.

Have questions that weren’t answered here? Post in the comments section below or shoot me an email at BornUnderABlondeSign@gmail.com.

For a personalized astrological reading detailing how the Venus retrograde will affect you specifically, email BornUnderABlondeSign@gmail.com for more info.

The Eighth House: Get Born Again

painfulendingsnewbeginningsSo gather up your jackets, move it to the exits
I hope you have found a friend…
Closing time
Every new beginning comes from some other beginning’s end. ~ Semisonic, Closing Time

Over our journey through the previous seven astrological Houses, I’d say, and hopefully you’d agree, that we’ve enjoyed an informative, relatively lighthearted safari as we’ve navigated the jungles of a vast array of life areas: money, ego, relationships, travel, communication, home, and family, just to name a few. Next we will explore the Eighth House. The House which makes many folks uneasy. It stirs our deepest fears and governs segments of our lives that most of us would rather not confront.

If you ever had a Tarot card reading and had the Death card placed in front of you, if you were unfamiliar with Tarot, your8th heart might have skipped a beat as you drew in a quick breath, praying the reader wasn’t about to deliver a death sentence to you or a loved one. Well, not unlike the poor, misunderstood Death card in the Tarot deck, the Eighth House of astrology is often referred to as the House of Death, understandably resulting in a negative, if not downright scary light being cast upon it. The first thing I’d like to point out here — and pay attention grasshoppers, because this is important — is that in the Eighth House, just like the Death card in a Tarot reading, the term “death” isn’t necessarily meant in the literal sense. Am I implying that whenever the word “death” is mentioned in the Eighth House that it’s never meant literally? Of course not. Sometimes it does allude to actual physical death. But just as often, “death” is a metaphor which refers to endings and/or new beginnings and/or changes. Although we touched on sex (but mostly romance) in the Fifth House, here in the Eighth House we’ll be taking a closer look at sex and sexual tastes/preferences, and even fetishes. The natural ruler of the Eighth House is the passionate, intense sign of Scorpio; therefore, this House also governs sex, death, and rebirth — which, again, are both literal and metaphorical life cycles.

Other areas of life covered in House Eight are what are known as shared resources. This includes inheritances, taxes, settlements, and other people’s money in general; i.e., credit cards, charge accounts, mortgages, loans from a bank or even from your best friend, as well as financial support received from another person such as alimony. Spiritual and emotional support are also areas governed by the Eighth House.

So let’s say you’re perusing your natal chart and there’s nary a planet, node, nor asteroid to be found in your lonesome, completely vacant Eighth House. Good GOD! Does this mean your life will lack passion, sex, change, new beginnings, or — wait for it — that you will live forever, never to experience death?

Great questions! Here are my answers to each of them, in no particular order: no, nope, nuh-uh, and not a chance. As previously mentioned (seven times, to be exact), there are twelve Houses and ten planets (including the Sun and the Moon) in a natal chart and as any six year-old can tell you, it is mathematically impossible for a planet to occupy every House. There will always be at least two empty Houses in a natal chart, and more often than not there will be more than two. If your Eighth House is vacant, it can be interpreted in a few different ways. First, we would take into account the traditional qualities of Scorpio, which is the natural ruler of the Eighth House. Additionally, we would examine the ruler of your natal chart’s Eighth House and use the characteristics of that sign, in addition to those of natural ruler Scorpio, to determine how you approach the issues governed by the Eighth House and in what ways these things affect your life on a personal level.

Furthermore, an empty Eighth House could mean nothing more than your life’s focus doesn’t revolve around the life areas here; perhaps you’re not overly concerned with the issues governed by the Eighth House. This isn’t to imply that these things mean nothing to you, it could be that you simply have other priorities. Or better yet, it can suggest that your Eighth House life areas are so naturally well-ordered that very little effort is required on your part to keep things running smoothly (you lucky bastard; what’s that like?)

But moving on: for those of us with planets in the House of Sex, Death, and Rebirth, let’s examine how the effects of each of these planetary placements would be expected to manifest in the life of the native.

improvementThe Sun in the Eighth House
A Sun in Eighth native feels an intense urge to experience more, more, more…particularly about themselves. Remember, the Sun is our ego and wherever the Sun is in the natal chart is where we want to shine. This individual is constantly seeking ways to make self-improvements, to change for the better. This could be in the form of a physical makeover but because of the native’s tendency to reject the superficial, it’s more likely the makeover would be one of a spiritual or emotional nature. You’ll find these folks browsing the self-improvement section at Barnes & Noble. They are especially interested in what society considers taboo; they want to uncover truth in these areas and are likely intrigued by the occult or metaphysics. The Eighth House Sun person is particularly intrigued by philosophical questions and theories about life and death…and life after death. This strong interest in spirituality could manifest as a result of a close, personal loss due to a death or it could be that the native simply finds this area of study interesting. It should be noted here that negative aspects in the natal chart of the individual with this Sun placement often result in premature, violent, or otherwise sudden death. This is not written in stone, it is simply something to take under advisement, rendering the aforementioned events 100 percent avoidable. That said, fame is often achieved posthumously, even if only briefly, possibly due to the cause of death itself which could be attributed to something which would make news headlines (plane crash, automobile accident, homicide, etc.) The solar Eighth House individual stands strong in a crisis and handles themselves well under pressure. Sexually speaking, this fiery individual likes their sex the same way: hot, intense, passionate. There is a curious pattern of Sun in Eighth folks losing a father/father figure relatively early in life; this could be due to his literal death or perhaps abandonment, either physically or emotionally (for example, he might have been alive and in the vicinity, maybe even in the home, but even though he was there, he wasn’t there. Make sense?) Another interesting trend is that Eighth House Sun natives seem to attract friends/love interests with Scorpio Sun signs. A good career for a solar Eighth House person is anything that involves managing other people’s money: accounting, banking, etc.

The Moon in the Eighth House
The Eight House governs sexual energy and change, while the Moon holds reign over, well, change as well. This can result in a native who is sexually restless and either constantly seeks new sexual challenges and/or changes sexual partners frequently. This is an unfortunate effect of the Moon which often gives an emotionally insecure native. In matters of sex, this one likes a lot of cuddling and nurturing, while simultaneously having an innate need to nurture a partner. The Eighth House Moon individual truly wants to connect deeply with another human being but the changeable lunar influence can be an obstacle here. If the native can recognize this, it’s entirely possible to push through it and obtain the intimacy they desire. Overly jealous and possessive, a Moon in Eighth person can send a partner/potential partner racing for the escape hatch faster than you can say “where the hell have you been?!” This individual is somewhat of a paradox: they desperately desire closeness with a partner, yet they are mistrustful of anyone who displays an interest in getting close to them. If the Moon in Eighth native can nip this tendency, they are intensely loyal, loving, devoted partners. While they want to accumulate their own material assets, they have an emotional need to control other people’s money. This one is also the type who races to the mall to embark on a monumental shopping spree during periods of melancholy. On that note, inheritances for these natives tend to come from the mother or maternal side of the family, though like the tides, finances tend to ebb and flow.

Mercury in the Eighth House
Mercury is the planet of communication and in the Eighth House of sex, here we have an individual who requires a talkative partner. Shrinking violets and quiet types need not apply, for an Eighth House Mercurian, whose mind and mouth both run about a mile a minute, is curious, spontaneous, and up for conversational marathons. Chatty Mercury in the House of sex also hints at a native who enjoys some naughty, sexy banter before — and during — a sexual rendezvous, as they are primarily aroused in the mind. If you’re witty, talkative, and up for some mid-sexual interlude play-by-play commentary, Mercury in Eighth wants you! Outside the bedroom, the native has a studious, inquisitive mind which serves them well in the areas of finance, medicine, or any field requiring intense study or research. They are masters at analyzing others, particularly any hidden motivations. The Eighth House Mercurian is authoritative and persuasive in their manner of speaking which benefits them well in almost any endeavor. Don’t even think about lying to this one, however; they’ll see right through you and they make uncanny detectives and investigators. They are highly intuitive and it’s not unusual for a Mercury in Eighth individual to have psychic or even mediumship abilities (also known as after-death communication, or ADC.) Because of a highly active mind that never seems to shut off, the native has a tendency to overanalyze and will sometimes become suspicious or paranoid even in situations in which these behaviors are not warranted.

Venus in the Eighth House
Charming Venus in the Eighth House of sex is drawn to charming partners. This one wants to be romanced, to enjoy dinners by candlelight, to have sex in luxurious surroundings, and for the love of all things sacred, please show a modicum of class and keep the vulgarity to a minimum. This one loves all the beautiful things money can buy…that is, all the beautiful things your money can buy, so get your checkbook ready because you’re gonna be dropping a LOT of money on this one. You should also be aware that an Eighth House Venusian doesn’t take sexual trysts lightly; there is an intensity to their physical interactions with a partner. This isn’t necessarily a bad thing — unless you’re looking for a one-nighter; this one ain’t goin’ for that — however, be advised that Venus in Eighth is bored by the mundane and if things become dull, it’s not beneath them to create drama for the sake of excitement. And drama isn’t a lot of fun…particularly the manufactured variety. The thing is, this one has a fear of allowing themselves to be vulnerable in love, and their fear of betrayal can result in a jealous, possessive native. If you manage to gain the trust of an Eighth House Venusian, once they are assured that you would never abuse that trust you will be richly rewarded with complete and total loyalty and devotion…with one caveat: they will expect (read: demand) the same from you. If you are aware of this going in and you’re good with that, you won’t be disappointed. The native here is attracted to the taboo, the things we’re not supposed to even think about, let alone talk about: the forbidden, the hidden. You’ve probably noticed that most Eighth House placements mention a native who is drawn to the taboo, and you’re right. But the key difference with a Venus in Eighth native is although they’re tantalized by taboo things, they are more likely to feel guilty for these thoughts, maybe even silently admonishing themselves (“Stop it; you shouldn’t think such things!”) or even blushing when having risque thoughts. In any event, the fact remains: the more off-limits something is, the greater the Venus in Eighth individual’s desire for it.

Mars in the Eighth House
Think about this for a minute: the planet of action in the House of sex. Hmm. This combo gives a native who has no qualms debtwhatsoever about making a move on the object of their sexual desire. Between the sheets, they have energy to spare…with one exception. According to astrologer Bob Marks, if the native’s Mars placement is in Gemini in the Eighth House, he or she will likely be the quintessential two-pump chump, if you will. If your sexual partner’s Mars is in Gemini in the Eighth House, my advice to you is to finagle things so that you get yours first! (You’re welcome.) On an unrelated note, because the Eighth House also governs other people’s money (as previously mentioned, credit cards, charge accounts, etc), when we add the Martian impulsivity to that, we have a native with a propensity toward overspending and shopping sprees they can’t afford, racking up massive debt on credit cards they won’t be able to pay off until circa 2045, resulting in a less-than-stellar credit rating and causing a great deal of tension between the native and their partner. A trend here is for the Eighth House Martian to become involved in a dispute over an inheritance. There is an unfortunate pattern with this Mars placement of early sexual trauma, perhaps in childhood, which the native struggles into adulthood to overcome. Frequently, true and lasting passion with a partner isn’t found until later in life than most, but it is definitely well worth the wait. The feeling in the native tends to be something along the lines of, I always thought I’d had good sex before, but this is the best sex of my life! A lesson for the native here, possibly resulting from earlier sexual trauma, is to learn to trust their sexual partner and to realize not everyone is out to betray them.

1nighterJupiter in the Eighth House
A Jupiter in Eighth native has a formidable knack for ferreting out information and uncovering the underlying cause of any problem, instinctively knowing how to solve it. This one loves mysteries and figuring out solutions to sticky situations. An Eighth House Jupiter individual…how do I put this…well, they enjoy sex, and a LOT of it (Jupiter is the planet of abundance) and they often take sexual liaisons somewhat lightly (read: they’re fine with one-nighters, so if you’re the type who forms quick emotional attachments and ready to propose after one roll in the hay, you’re better off not even going there with this one in the first place.) Multiple partners ain’t no thang for the free-loving Jupiter in Eighth; in fact, they are often attracted to sexual partners from different backgrounds or ethnicities, possibly folks hailing from another country. The native is a do-as-I-say-not-as-I-do individual who doesn’t exactly practice what they preach, meaning they’ll warn you how risky unsafe sex with multiple partners is and shake their finger at you, demanding that you “don’t do that!”…as they head out to the local “no-tell motel” for an evening of indiscriminate sex with a couple they met online an hour ago who may or may not be bringing a goat and/or a midget with them. Jupiter is also the planet of luck and as long as the gold and platinum credit cards keep turning up in the mailbox, the native will continue to overextend their credit line (Jupiter’s abundance influence) which can obviously cause many a headache down the road. The good news here is that with Jupiter’s influence of luck and abundance, an Eighth House Jupiter individual often experiences a natural, peaceful death at a ripe old age.

Saturn in the Eighth House
Planetary schoolyard bully Saturn loves to place obstacles and delays in our path, and where in our lives those obstacles tend to manifest depends upon Saturn’s placement in the natal chart. When the planet of obstacles and limitations is planted in the Eighth House of death, legacies, sex, changes, other people’s money, and new beginnings, we will typically have a native who doesn’t benefit from any area governed by the Eighth House until later in life, usually age 40 or later, and even then it’s largely a result of the native’s own efforts, hard work and toil. Although the native can be somewhat anal about their finances because of all the difficulties and delays they’ve dealt with throughout their life, they manage other people’s money beautifully, even better than their own. The native’s credit score is usually relatively low, compounding their dilemma (damn you, Saturn!) This placement of Saturn is associated with longevity, surprisingly enough, which is wonderful news for the Eighth House Saturnian. The Saturn in Eighth approach to sex is controlled and anything but spontaneous; it’s practically scripted. Oooh, sexy!

Uranus in the Eighth House
Eccentric and downright strange Uranus in the House of sex, death, rebirth, change, and other people’s money results in a native with the unorthodox approach to sex you would probably expect: they don’t want to have the same sexual experience over and over, they want to experiment, and may God have mercy on your mundane soul if you dare suggest sex on top of the refrigerator two nights in a row. The Eighth House Uranian is a paradoxical oddball: while they reject socially accepted sexual practices simply for the sake of rebellion, they replace them with their own draconian and no doubt far-out set of unbreakable sexual laws requiring strict adherence. One of my closest friends (formerly a friend-with-benefits, now completely platonic) has this Uranus placement. He explained from the get-go that he had very stringent rules when it came to sex, and our encounters would be no different: we would only engage in sex at night, in bed, before going to sleep. Morning or daytime sex — any spontaneous sex for that matter — was out of the question. Furthermore, only certain positions (two) were acceptable. Third, although we were never in a traditional committed relationship, we were roommates and we agreed that as long as we were in the aforementioned FWB/roommate arrangement, we would not engage in sexual congress with anyone else (how’s that for an “it’s complicated” Facebook relationship status?) Now in his defense, he laid out these stipulations in full disclosure prior to our first sexual experience. (In hindsight, I’m a little surprised he didn’t draw up and then have me sign a Sheldon Cooper-esque “Friends With Benefits/Roommate Agreement”…but I digress.) Moving on to an unrelated topic, a Uranus in Eighth native is advised to practice extreme caution around electricity or machinery. Yeah, I know, that’s ridiculously generic advice that is applicable to everyone. But the thing is, for some reason there is a strange yet clear pattern of accidents, injuries, and even fatalities involving Eighth House Uranians and electricity/machinery. This is why I urge the native to pay particular attention to safety precautions if and when they must work on or around these things. This Uranus placement lends a remarkable gift for healing with the hands, such as with Reiki or even massage therapy. If the native isn’t already involved in anything like this, it’s well worth considering. Natives of this placement will often admit to struggles with suicidal ideations; though more frequently in their early years, it sometimes persists throughout their lifetime.

Neptune in the Eighth House
Dreamy Neptune in the Eighth House gives a native who is incredibly intuitive, experiencing frequent episodes of deja vu and prophetic dreams which they love to analyze. They are on a seemingly endless search for spiritual meaning and they often ponder questions of life, death, and beyond. This individual has an embarrassingly low tolerance for alcohol: two beers and they’re all yours. A Neptune in Eighth has a deep desire to connect on a soul level with a sexual partner. Neptune is the planet of imagination and in the House of sex, the native has an abundance of sexual fantasies and enjoys role-playing. Because Neptune sees what it wants to see (remember those rose-colored glasses), STDs are a concern here because of indiscriminate perceptions of sexual partners. The native tends to see a partner as they wish they were rather than as they actually are. The Eighth House Neptune individual frequently gives more pleasure in the bedroom than they receive…but they are totally fine with this. They need to please…they want to please. Outside of the bedroom, the native is incredibly generous and they live by the motto “what’s mine is yours.” The problem, however, is they tend to forget the other half of that motto, which should be “…and what’s yours is mine,” leading them to be easily taken advantage of or being deceived. The rose-colored glasses come into play when it comes to finances as well (“I have checks; therefore, I have money!”) and this can obviously cause much difficulty, and it’s usually not until mid-life or later when the native finally develops the willpower/ability to see the situation for what it is and manage their finances responsibly. If you are the partner of someone with this placement, the safest bet is for you to handle the finances. Alternatively, an Eighth House Neptune person is particularly prone to being defrauded by people they trust, so extra vigilance and care is required when allowing others to handle their financial affairs. An inheritance is likely but there will probably be delays or difficulties in actually collecting it, possibly due to a contesting of a will or a family feud. Neptune is the planet of illusion, and the death of someone with this placement often occurs under mysterious circumstances (this isn’t to imply any foul play; however, a cause of death might not be immediately obvious.) Drugs or alcohol, which Neptune rules, are common culprits in these deaths. Even if not directly responsible for the death, these substances are frequently found in the decedent’s system postmortem.

Pluto in the Eighth House
Pluto is an incredibly intense, all-or-nothing planet of extremes and it is right at home (or in it’s dominion) in the Eighth House, fetishwhich it naturally rules. With this placement, the native tends to experience an above average number of unusual events. Naturally drawn to the occult, all things taboo, hidden, or dark, the Pluto in Eighth individual has an uncanny knack for seeing right through people and getting straight to their underlying motivations or hidden agendas. These natives are naturally gifted healers and they make excellent hypnotists, therapists, crisis counselors, investigators, detectives, and psychologists. This person will ask questions that will make others’ jaws drop…and the answers they receive will be the truth; it’s as though people sense the native will know if they are lying (they’re not wrong.) Eighth House Pluto folks are intrigued by the darker side of life as well as mysteries. They crave deep, passionate intimacy yet are simultaneously fearful of it. Sexual relationships are often complicated and unconventional, with a frequent taste for submission and domination as well as control. As the planet of obsessions, Pluto’s influence can give an individual who is obsessed with sex (sorry, no, this is not necessarily a good thing!) When Pluto is in the Eighth House, the native can count on a lifetime of power struggles, especially in regard to finances. Pluto is the natural ruler of the Eighth House, so death and rebirth (read: change) is a constant theme in the life of the native.

Ch-ch-ch-ch-changeschange
Turn and face the strain
Ch-ch-changes
Don’t wanna be a richer man
Ch-ch-ch-ch-changes
Turn and face the strain
Ch-ch-changes
Just gonna hafta be a different man
Time may change me
But I can’t trace time. ~ David Bowie, Changes

FAQs: Everything You’ve Always Wondered About Astrology and Natal Charts (But Never Got Around To Asking!)

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Most folks are familiar with their Sun sign. The typical person can be found perusing the newspaper for their daily horoscope each morning over a steaming mug of java, and when they take a look at the day’s forecast for their particular Sun sign, it’s usually a one-size-fits-all blurb of advice or wisdom, bearing a resemblance to the vague slip of paper one might find inside a Chinese fortune cookie: “You will get off to a sluggish start this morning but by this evening, you will be full of energy. Enjoy a night on the town!”

Pish-posh. These random, obscure, and beyond useless newspaper horoscopes are what I unlovingly refer to as “cookie cutter horoscopes.” Other than perhaps serving as entertainment value (and that’s pushing it), they are virtually worthless. On any given day, I guarantee you that if you read the day’s “predictions” for the remaining eleven Sun signs, you would be able to make each one of them apply to yourself and your own life. Seriously. Give it a try!

Many people are unaware that astrology involves anything other than a Sun sign when in fact, your Sun sign is just the tip of a massive proverbial iceberg. We also have a Moon sign and an Ascendant (or rising sign) in addition to planetary placements; for example, Venus in Leo or Saturn in Taurus. Furthermore, there are five asteroids which have placements in various zodiac signs, not to mention nodes, aspects, and the Descendant, which is the sign directly opposite the Ascendant.

In much the same way that our physical bodies are comprised of multiple organs and systems which come together to function as a whole human being, the components of an individual’s natal chart work in tandem to create an individual’s personality, life patterns, and experiences. If medical researchers studied only the cardiovascular system, for example, ignoring other vital areas such as the brain and respiratory system, we would have only a tiny fraction of the understanding of how a human body works. Likewise, if astrologers focused solely on Sun signs, ignoring other parts of a natal chart such as the Ascendant or Moon placement, we would only see a few pixels of a much larger picture.

What have you always wondered about astrology or your Sun sign? Are there things that just don’t make sense to you; for example, how two people with the same Sun sign can be  entirely different from one another? Well then, I have some good news: today is your lucky day because in this article, we’re going to explore some of the more common astrological queries, as well as some issues which you might never before have considered. However, if you have a question that isn’t addressed below or you need further clarification, feel free to fire away in the comments section or on Born Under a Blonde Sign’s official Facebook page. Alternatively, you can ask me directly via email at BornUnderABlondeSign@gmail.com and I’ll be more than happy to help you understand whatever it is that’s tripping you up.

Example of a natal chart. This one belongs to a close Aquarian friend of mine.

Example of a natal chart. This one belongs to a close Aquarian friend of mine.

What exactly is a natal chart?
A natal chart, also known as a birth chart, is essentially a snapshot of the heavens at the exact time, date, and location (latitude/longitude) of your birth. The horoscope wheel looks much like a pie that has been divided into twelve 30 degree sections, which are known as Houses. Each section/House governs a specific life area.

Why does the exact time and place of my birth matter in my chart?
The exact time and location (city/state/province/country) of your birth are necessary in order to determine your Ascendant (rising sign), which is the sign that was on the Eastern horizon at the exact time and latitude/longitude of your birth.

I don’t know my exact time of birth. Can you still do my chart?
Yes. However, without an exact time, a default birth time of 12:00 noon is used. This results in a chart which you can’t trust to be accurate. Your time of birth is critical to a chart’s overall accuracy because it is used to calculate your Ascendant. Unlike Sun, Moon, or other planetary signs, the Ascendant transits through the signs fairly rapidly; it moves into a new sign anywhere from every 30 minutes to three hours. Your Ascendant is the point on which the rest of your chart is based. If your exact birth time is inaccurate or unknown, this will probably result in an incorrectly calculated Ascendant, which causes planets to be placed in the wrong Houses, which will in turn have incorrect interpretations…all of which means you now have a highly-detailed, thorough natal chart filled with absolutely useless information. If you don’t know your time of birth, it can sometimes be found on your birth certificate. If yours isn’t indicated but you have a rough estimate of your birth time, I can work with that. I’d like to point out here that if you know you were “born in the evening,” that is too broad of a timeframe for me to produce an accurate chart. But if you know, for example, that it was sometime between 7 and 8pm, that greatly increases the likelihood of a correctly calculated Ascendant; therefore, an accurate chart is a safe bet.

What is the Ascendant/rising sign and how does it affect me?
Your Ascendant is the sign on the cusp of your First House and is calculated using your exact time and place of birth. It is the face you present to the world; it’s how others perceive you. Your public persona. Which qualities you exhibit depends on in which specific zodiac sign your Ascendant is; in other words, you might have a Cancer Sun sign, but if you have an Aries Ascendant, you will come across to other people more as an Aries than a Cancer.

moonsignsWhat does my Moon sign mean?
Your Moon sign reveals how you express yourself emotionally. Like the Ascendant, the specific qualities in how you emotionally express yourself depends on the sign in which your Moon is. Building on the previous example, you might have a Cancer Sun sign but if your Moon is in Sagittarius, you will express your emotions more like a Sadge than a Cancer.

Isn’t my Sun sign more important than my Ascendant and Moon sign?
Negative. Your Ascendant indicates how the world sees you. Your Moon sign reveals the way in which you express your emotions. Your Sun sign tells us about the core of your personality, or your ego. While some astrologers do believe the Sun is the most important of all of your signs, I disagree. This trio of signs are of equal importance in the interpretation of a natal chart, as they all come together like puzzle pieces to create the broad strokes of who you are and what makes you tick. Saying that your Sun sign is your most important sign is akin to saying that your heart is more important than your lungs or your brain. They are all of vital importance and they work together. If one fails, so too will the others.

 What are “nodes” in astrology?
In a natal chart, the term “node” refers to the North and South Nodes of the Moon, which are in direct opposition to one another. nodesThey are not planets, but mathematical points which consider the relationship between the Sun, Moon, and Earth at the exact moment of one’s birth. The Nodes represent karmic imbalance in an individual. The placement of the North Node in a natal chart reveals the experiences and life lessons we must master in order to balance our personal karma. The South Node’s placement indicates the ways in which one is likely to sabotage those crucial experiences; therefore, we can become conscious of these tendencies.

What are “aspects” in astrology?
The term “aspect” in astrology is defined as the angles the planets make to one another in a natal chart, as well as to the Ascendant, Descendant, Midheaven, and lower Midheaven. Aspects in one’s chart can reveal specific timing of major life changes or transitions in the life of the individual. There are five traditional major aspects: the conjunction, sextile, square, trine, and opposition. Although whether the aspect itself is considered to be positive or negative depends upon which planets are involved, it’s generally accepted that a square is a stressful aspect, while trines and sextiles are generally harmonious. In any event, aspects between Venus, Jupiter, and/or the Sun, in any combination, are the most favorable, while aspects between Mars, Saturn, and/or the Moon, also in any combination, are the most negative.

What is the Descendant and how does it affect me?
The Descendant is directly opposite the Ascendant, on the cusp of the Seventh House in the natal chart. Where our Ascendant indicates the way we are perceived by others, our Descendant reveals the way in which we tend to perceive others. Our Ascendant and Descendant complement each other quite nicely much of the time but if, for whatever reason, we exhibit more of our Ascendant sign behaviors, this can result in our attracting people who are the opposite of the types of folks we’d want to attract. The Descendant also indicates what turns us off about others and how we deal with those people.

cuspWhat is the cusp regarding Sun signs?
The short definition of a cusp when it comes to Sun signs is the boundary between two signs. Such as when the Sun completes its transit of Scorpio on Thursday, November 21, 2013 at 10:28pm EST and enters Sagittarius. Someone born before or at 10:27pm EST on that date would have a Scorpio Sun, while someone born at or after 10:28pm EST or later on that date would have a Sagittarius Sun.

Although the Sun obviously cannot be in two signs at once, the general thought among most astrologers is that being born close to the beginning or end of a Sun sign will result in an individual who is influenced more by the actual Sun sign, yet also exhibit tendencies from the influence of the cusp sign. Not all astrologers agree on what constitutes the cusp, while a few don’t believe the cusp even exists. Some astrologers believe that anyone born within as many as ten days before or after the first day of a Sun sign is on the cusp. Other astrologers believe you are only on the cusp if you were born on the day of the Sun sign change (such as November 21, 2013.) Others feel if you were born within five days of the beginning or end of a sign then you are on the cusp, while still others say it’s more like three days.  

My personal opinion here is that a person is on the cusp if they are born within roughly 3 degrees of another Sun sign. In other words, if your Sun is 27, 28, or 29 degrees Cancer, I would say that you were born on the cusp of Cancer and Leo and probably would have not only traditional Crab personality traits, but some Leo-ish qualities as well. For example, one of my sisters was born with a Sun in 28 degrees Cancer. She primarily has Crab characteristics but she also demonstrates some significant Leo-esque behaviors. This explains perfectly why she’s such a pretentious, show-offy bitch. 

What is the Midheaven and lower Midheaven?
The Midheaven is an important angle in the natal chart. It is located midway between the Ascendant and Descendant on the cusp of the Tenth House, and indicates our life goals, career, and public reputation. It reveals how one tends to react to stressful situations. Frequently, the individual identifies with and admires the traits of the sign on the Midheaven. Oftentimes, it represents a parent, usually the mother.

The lower Midheaven is exactly opposite the Midheaven in the natal chart, on the cusp of the Fourth House, which usually represents the father.

I am nothing like how my Sun sign is described. Does this mean astrology is just a bunch of crap?
Not at all. In my experience, astrology has proven itself to be all too real. In fact, I habitually (silently) try to guess a person’s Sun sign upon first meeting them, and I am not exaggerating when I tell you that I guess correctly about eight times out of ten. Quick example: a few years ago, I was at work, outside having a cigarette with my supervisor. I had only been in the position for a few months and didn’t know anyone’s birthday (except for one coworker who had already had a birthday in that time.) Anyway, she was ranting about the person whom I replaced and as I listened to her, honing in on some specific statements she made, I thought, “she’s got to be a Taurus.” At an appropriate point in the conversation, I said to her, “I’m sorry; being an astrologer, I can’t help but wonder: are you by chance a Taurus?” Know what? I was right. That’s just one example of literally scores. But I digress.

Many people will read their Sun sign descriptions and go, “huh?! That’s not me at all!” My response to that is twofold: one, as discussed above, we are so much more than just a Sun sign. We have an Ascendant and a Moon sign, planetary signs, all of which modify our Sun sign as well as each other to one degree or another. Or perhaps you were born on a cusp, which will give you some qualities of that sign. Two, maybe you aren’t as unlike your Sun sign as you think you are. For instance, my husband is a Cancer but he was born only 4 hours and 20 minutes after the Sun exited Gemini and entered Cancer. His entire life, he has believed himself to be a Gemini. He will tell you to this day he is a Gemini because he is “nothing like a Cancer.” Heh. Yeah, he is. Sure, he’s got a lot of Gemini traits. But he will never admit, even to himself, that he has a lot of Crab qualities. (Sorry, baby. You are a lot like your Sun sign. But I love you anyway.)

I have two friends who are both Capricorns but they are nothing alike. How is this possible?2capricorns
There are a plethora of possible explanations for how two people with the same Sun sign can seem completely different from one another. One of the more likely reasons involves their Ascendants. For example, let’s assume one of them has a Scorpio Ascendant while the other has a Libra Ascendant. (Remember, the Ascendant is the manner in which we present ourselves to the world.) Therefore, your two buddies would probably be perceived as a Scorpio and a Libra rather than Capricorns, which certainly explains how they seem to be nothing alike, at least outwardly. Inwardly, they probably share many similarities when it comes to ego and traditional Capricorn characteristics. In addition to looking at their Ascendants, we would also examine each of their Moon signs. The differences could also be due to how their Suns are aspected in their respective natal charts, the House(s) in which their Suns are placed, or a multitude of other possibilities. For further details on this topic, check out the article A Tale Of Two Cancers…And An Aries, in which I examine in more detail why and how dramatically different two people with the same Sun sign can be.

I read that there have been some changes in astrology and now I’m a different Sun sign. What is this about?

The tropical zodiac used in Western astrology: nothing's changed!

The tropical zodiac used in Western astrology: nothing’s changed!


Oh, I’m glad you asked this question. Here’s the thing: scientists say that because the Earth wobbles on its axis, the dates which the ancient Babylonians gave to astrological signs are now off by about a month. Always believed yourself to be an Aquarius? Wrong — hello there, Pisces! Guess what, you nitpicking Virgo — you’re really a Leo! If you thought you were a Scorpio, surprise — you’re actually a Libra! Your whole life has been a lie! And now what are you supposed to do about that foot-high Scorpio tattoo emblazoned across your chest?

Simmer down there, Scorpion. Although the above information is correct, it doesn’t change the dates of the tropical zodiac — which is used in Western astrology, the most commonly-practiced astrological system in the Western world (also known as natal, horoscopic, or humanistic astrology.) If you were a Scorpio at birth, you’re a Scorpio today. And you will be tomorrow. And the next day. The only astrological system that is affected by this scientific revelation is the sidereal zodiac — which is mostly practiced in the Eastern world, such as in Hindu astrology, a branch of which is Vedic astrology.

My boyfriend is a Leo and I’m a Sagittarius. I’ve always heard Leo and Sagittarius are an excellent match but we fight all the time!  If our signs our supposedly so compatible, why is this?

or…

My wife is a Virgo and I’m an Aries. Everything I’ve read says we aren’t compatible at all, but we’ve been happily married for twenty years. How is that possible if our signs are so incompatible?
The short answer to these two questions is that we are so much more than our Sun signs.

Many factors aside from our Sun signs can affect compatibility. These include each partner’s Venus and Mars placements, stressful aspects between their natal charts (more on that in a minute), Moon placements, or Ascendants, just to name a few possibilities. Because of these variables, it’s interesting to note that the opposite can also be true: two signs which have historically been deemed as incompatible could be a match made in heaven.  

The key lesson here is to not make snap judgments about a love interest based solely on a Sun sign (it blows my mind seeing how many people actually do this.) Although there is a teensy grain of truth to the traditional good match/bad match Sun sign descriptions you’ve no doubt seen, it’s only one piece of a much larger puzzle. Never assume that just because your Sun sign is traditionally compatible with the Sun sign of the guy you’re crushing on, that you’re destined to live happily ever after together. Nor should you automatically dismiss that girl your friend  introduced you to simply because you’ve read that her Sun sign is incompatible with yours: you might miss out on something amazing!

Astrologically speaking, the most accurate method of predicting the probable outcome of a relationship/potential relationship is with a synastry chart. These relationship compatibility charts are incredibly helpful tools which can pinpoint — often in uncanny detail — possible problematic issues that could arise as well as positive points in a relationship/potential relationship. They are unbelievably accurate at predicting whether a union will be a walk in the clouds or a downward spiral into the depths of hell. For more info on love compatibility and synastry charts, feel free to contact me directly at BornUnderABlondeSign@gmail.com.

How many different kinds of astrology are there?
Dozens. Some of these include Western, Vedic, Chinese, classical, and traditional.  

Which branch of astrology do you practice?
Primarily, I use Western astrology (sometimes interchangeably called horoscopic, humanistic, or natal astrology) which is probably the system with which most folks are familiar. It uses the tropical zodiac which begins in the Northern Hemisphere at the spring equinox each year around March 21st with the sign of Aries. It involves constructing a natal chart (the horoscope wheel resembling a pie divided into twelve sections/Houses) based on the exact time, date, and place of a person’s birth. For those who don’t know their time of birth, I construct a natal chart using sun sign astrology, in which the horoscope wheel isn’t used; instead, I focus solely on the individual’s birth date and the Sun, Moon, and planetary placements on that date. Occasionally, I dabble in Vedic astrology (a branch of Hindu astrology combined with astronomy which shares some similarities with Western astrology), usually for no other reason than to seek a “second opinion,” for lack of a better term.  

Additionally, I practice relationship astrology and predictive astrology. I have an interest in medical and psychological astrology; however, I don’t typically construct stand-alone medical natal charts or psychological natal charts. Instead, these subjects are included and discussed when I construct a client’s complete natal chart.  

How long have you been practicing astrology?
That’s not an easy answer. While in the grocery store checkout line with my mother when I was seven, I spotted a little $0.69 booklet that caught my eye. It was red with an image of a ram on it, and it was titled, “Aries: March 21 – April 19.” Because my birthday is April 9th, I was intrigued and I asked my mom if I could get it. She bought it for me and from that day forward, I wanted to know as much as I could about astrology. I read books, bought Star Scrolls, you name it. But it wasn’t until 1998 that I began delving much more deeply into the subject, learning about Moon signs and Ascendants. I began constructing natal charts that same year, beginning with my own, then my children’s, my husband’s, and so on. Within a year, I had friends of friends calling me to request natal charts. People even began requesting natal charts to give as gifts. Astrology is one of my greatest passions and I have studied a great deal over the years, learning much from experience and continuing to learn even more all the time.  

Why would I want to pay you to do my natal chart/relationship compatibility chart/predictive chart when I can easily go online, fill in some blanks, and get it for free?
I’ll tell you why. Because when you go online, fill in some blanks and get your free natal/relationship compatibility/predictive chart, it is nowhere near as personal or in-depth as the one I create specifically for you. And if you have questions about that free chart, who are you gonna ask? Google? But if I do your chart and you have questions, included in the cost is a free phone consultation, up to one hour, to ask me specific questions about your chart or to have me explain something in greater detail. Besides all that, my charts are always infused with humor; therefore, my charts are much more fun to read than anything you get for free online. 

I would like for you to do a chart for me. What kinds of charts do you offer, what information is contained in them, and how much are they?
I currently offer three different chart types, each with subtypes: natal, relationship, and predictive.

  • COMPLETE NATAL CHART — Exactly what the name implies. Date, place, and exact time of birth are required. Includes detailed information on Sun sign, Moon sign, and Ascendant along with in-depth descriptions of planetary and asteroid placements. The Descendant is also explained and discussed. Personalized interpretations of each of the twelve astrological Houses are provided. Covers virtually every life area. Also contains a section on astrology and health which discusses medical issues that could arise based on certain factors in your chart. Highly-detailed discussion on each of the chart’s aspects as well as a love/relationship compatibility section which gives a general description of how well-matched (or not) your Sun sign is to each Sun sign and also looks at your Venus and Mars placements along with other factors which reveal the astrological characteristics of your “perfect partner” beyond their Sun sign. Chart weighting and chart typing are calculated and their effects on your life are explained.  Extremely detailed with in-depth interpretations of virtually every nook and cranny of your life, this chart consists of 50+ pages of revealing information with several “aha!” moments to be expected along this journey through your personality. Written in layman’s terms and fun to read with plenty of humor, it’s both entertaining and enlightening…even more so because it’s all about YOU! Makes a truly unique gift for just about any occasion: birthdays, holidays, even the birth of a baby:  parents can refer to their baby’s chart over the years as their child grows up! (I have created natal charts for newborns many times and it still amazes me when I see the traits and tendencies discussed in the chart actually manifest.)  Chart can be emailed and/or bound in an attractive report format and mailed via USPS at no additional cost.

                COMPLETE NATAL CHART – $44.99    INCLUDED: PHONE CONSULTATION (IF NEEDED, UP TO 1 HOUR) WHERE THE  CLIENT CAN ASK SPECIFIC QUESTIONS.

              

 

  • BASIC NATAL CHART — Personalized natal chart primarily focusing on detailed interpretations of the Sun, Moon, and planets in the signs. Love/relationship compatibility section which measures your general compatibility (or lack thereof) with each Sun sign. A limited discussion on astrology and health is included. A great option for anyone who doesn’t know their time of birth as well as someone who simply desires only a basic astrological reading. Makes a great gift for almost any occasion. Averaging 20+ pages, this chart can be emailed to you and/or bound in an attractive report format and mailed via USPS at no additional cost.

                BASIC NATAL CHART – $24.99   INCLUDED: PHONE CONSULTATION (IF NEEDED, UP TO 30 MINUTES) WHERE THE CLIENT CAN ASK SPECIFIC QUESTIONS.

             

 

  • RELATIONSHIP COMPATIBILITY/SYNASTRY CHART – Synastry report comparing the natal charts of two people (individual charts not included with report), examining planetary placements and aspects between the two charts, revealing detailed information on possible problems as well as positive points which can be expected in a relationship between the two subjects. Can be constructed with or without exact times of births for each partner, but will be less specific/detailed without exact times of birth. Written in easy-to-understand terms, this is a fun chart that will surprise you with its insight and accuracy. Averaging 20+ pages, a synastry chart is a useful tool that  demonstrates why your relationship has the issues it does…or why it seems to be a match made in heaven! The synastry report can be emailed and/or bound in an attractive report format and mailed via USPS at no additional cost.

                SYNASTRY REPORT – $49.99    INCLUDED: PHONE CONSULTATION (IF NEEDED, UP TO 1 HOUR) WHERE THE CLIENT CAN ASK SPECIFIC QUESTIONS.

         

            

 

  • RELATIONSHIP COMPATIBILITY/COMPOSITE CHART – A chart of the relationship between two people. It calculates the mathematical midpoints between each partner’s natal chart (individual natal charts not included with composite chart), creating a separate chart of the relationship itself. Date, place, and exact time of birth required for each partner. It reveals the dynamics between the individuals and indicates in which areas as well as when problems could crop up as well as strong points in the union. It looks exactly the same and is interpreted in much the same way as an individual’s natal chart. A composite chart shows how a couple handles day-to-day issues and, like a synastry chart, is a useful relationship tool. The composite chart averages 50+ pages in length, as it is much like an individual’s natal chart, and can be emailed and/or bound in an attractive report format and mailed via USPS at no additional cost.

                COMPOSITE CHART – $59.99   INCLUDED: PHONE CONSULTATION (IF NEEDED, UP TO 1 HOUR) WHERE THE CLIENT CAN ASK SPECIFIC QUESTIONS.

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  • PREDICTIVE ASTROLOGICAL CHART – Just what the name implies. Using several methods including solar return, secondary progression, and transits, a predictive chart is created for a specific future point in time of the client’s choosing. Date, place, and exact time of birth is required. This is NOT your one-size-fits-all newspaper horoscope. It is a highly-detailed, personalized forecast based on transits and progressions of the chosen future point in time as compared to the individual’s natal chart (natal chart not included.) Any future date/year can be chosen. Want to know what it’s looking like for you in the year 2045? Your wedding day next spring? The next couple of months? A predictive chart can answer all of these questions. The length of a predictive chart varies depending upon the timeframe requested by the client (i.e; a forecast for one day will be significantly shorter than a forecast for one week, month, etc.) The predictive chart can be emailed and/or bound in an attractive report format and mailed via USPS at no additional charge. A phone consultation, if needed, from 15 minutes up to 1 hour depending on length of chart, where the client can ask specific questions, is included.

                PREDICTIVE CHART – 1 DAY FORECAST – $9.99

                PREDICTIVE CHART – 2 DAYS UP TO 1 WEEK FORECAST – $19.99

                PREDICTIVE CHART – 2 WEEKS UP TO 1 MONTH FORECAST – $29.99

                PREDICTIVE CHART – 1 TO 3 MONTH FORECAST – $49.99

                PREDICTIVE CHART – 3 TO 6 MONTH FORECAST – $74.99

            PREDICTIVE CHART – 6 MONTHS OR MORE – $89.99 

                 

                

Have you ever been wrong on someone’s natal chart?
Hmm…that’s an interesting way to phrase it. Let me try to explain how this works.  

I’m not a psychic. I don’t have a crystal ball. When I do a natal chart, I work with calculations based on the dates, times, and places of birth provided to me by clients. What I do is interpret what those calculations mean. I don’t guess or predict. That said, it’s absolutely true that no one’s chart will be 100 percent accurate. Not every single thing indicated will be spot-on. That’s not necessarily me (or any astrologer) being “wrong,” that’s simply the nature of astrology. Many things in a chart are tendencies, not necessarily predictions. For example, I frequently state that Pisces is the sign most likely to struggle with addiction as well as suicidal ideations. That doesn’t mean if you’re a Pisces, you’re GOING to be a junkie or a lush, or that you WILL attempt/commit suicide. It just indicates a propensity for these things. Similarly, Sagittarius is the sign most likely to cheat on you, and Aquarius is the least-likely sign to get married. Of course, not all Sadges are adulterers, nor are all Water Bearers confirmed bachelors/bachelorettes. It’s just a tendency. We’ve got so many other influences in our charts that can affect all of these things. 

There are a lot of conflicting statements in my chart; for example, it says I’m very outgoing but somewhere else it says I’m very shy.

This is extremely common. What this “discrepancy” usually indicates, such as in this particular scenario, is that although on the surface the individual appears to be outgoing, inwardly they might be somewhat shy or insecure, but they don’t want others to know this. Remember also that our Ascendant, Moon, and planetary signs have a dilution (or amplification) effect on our Sun sign (or vice versa), modifying one another. For instance, a Scorpio Sun native with an Aquarius Ascendant or Moon will probably be described in their chart as being intensely jealous and possessive (Scorpio) as well as being more emotionally detached and freedom-loving (Aquarius.) This example would probably result in someone who is less intense and jealous than a more-typical Scorpion would be (Aquarius Moon or Ascendant’s modification of the Scorpio Sun), yet more intense and jealous than we would tend to expect in someone with an Aquarius Moon or Ascendant (due to the Scorpion Sun’s influence on the Aquarian Moon or Ascendant.)

So: have I ever done a chart for anyone who has then said to me, “This is way off. None of this is remotely like me at all”? No. That’s right. Not one person has ever told me their chart was nothing like them. In fact, most people are surprised at how much of it is accurate. I would guesstimate that any given natal chart is about 80 percent accurate, give or take 5 percent.

However, I remember exactly one natal chart I constructed where I knew the person like the back of my hand. I read through it two or three times and still couldn’t believe it: about 90 percent of what was in their chart was inaccurate. I knew with absolute certainty I had an exact, correct time, date, and place of birth. Yet, there it was staring me in the face. The majority of what was in that chart couldn’t possibly have been more off base. There were a few things that rang true, but so much of it was wrong that it might as well have been someone else’s natal chart. It was the chart of my now-deceased Sadge first ex-husband and father of my three children. I can’t explain it to this day. 

What if you do my chart and it’s all wrong? Do I get a refund?
Oooh…no. Sorry. A lot of work goes into constructing and interpreting a chart. There are too many people who could take advantage of a money-back guarantee and I would have no way to know whether it was truly all wrong or not; furthermore, if it really was that far off base, I would have no way of knowing if it was because I was given incorrect information to work with (whether intentionally or not.) That being the case, I don’t offer refunds. When a client requests a chart, they should go into it with the understanding that I don’t claim everything in it will be 100 percent spot-on; that’s simply impossible and if any astrologer claims otherwise, don’t you dare believe them.

Still have unanswered questions? Need further clarification on any of the above? Feel free to post in the comments section or email me at BornUnderABlondeSign@gmail.com.