Philosophy. 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 manifest 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.)
The 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 paths, 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.
Pluto 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.