Every astrological chart is divided into twelve segments, commonly referred to as houses, with the first house resting on the eastern horizon.

In Vedic astrology, the houses are known as bhavas, or sthanas, meaning “residences” or “stations.” As the planets move through the zodiac, they reside in one of the twelve houses, and it is through this combination of planet, sign, and house that the astrological chart is interpreted.

The First House

Commonly referred to the House of the Body or the Self, the first house is measured from the eastern horizon to 30° below it. The first house reveals an individual’s personality and sense of purpose for this lifetime, and is therefore known as a house of dharma.

When interpreting a chart, the first house signifies:

  • The physical body, complexion, and beauty
  • One’s character, strengths, and weaknesses
  • Self-confidence, health, and well-being
  • Personal success, happiness, and distress
  • Fame, infamy, and social identity
  • The head, brain, and intellect
  • Longevity, asceticism, and pride
  • Beginnings and appearances
  • Wisdom from previous lives

The Second House

Known as the House of Wealth or Knowledge, the second house is measured from 30°-60° below the eastern horizon. This house rules a person’s relationship with values, including their approach to money and other tangible assets.

When looking at a chart, the second house indicates:

  • Wealth, transactions, and money
  • Family, ancestral history & traditions
  • Speech, one’s education & learning
  • Food, drink, music, and language
  • Clothes, grains, and precious metals
  • The face, mouth, and tongue
  • Generosity or miserliness
  • Determination or fickleness
  • Faith in God, truthfulness, and knowledge

The Third House

The third house is known as the House of Brothers. However, it includes sisters, and even cousins, close friends, and colleagues. In this way, it conveys the spirit of fraternity, or brotherhood. The third house is measured from 60° below the eastern horizon to straight down, 90° below the earth, or halfway between the eastern skyline and the western horizon. This house deals with one’s relationship with desire, especially their ambitions and driving influences in life.

In an astrological chart, the third house signifies:

  • Brothers, sisters, and brethren
  • Co-workers, employees, and servants
  • Virtues or vices, and courage
  • Strength, stamina, and appetite
  • Commerce, news, and communications
  • Writing, literature, and publishing
  • The neck, shoulders, chest, and arms
  • Sports, hobbies, and pleasure
  • Doubts, confusion, and concepts of happiness

The Fourth House

The fourth house is known as the House of Happiness. In some cases it is also referred to as the House of the Mother. This house is measured from 90° below the earth to 60° below the western horizon. The fourth house is known as a house of liberation, or freedom from material existence, as it reveals how one is situated in the current lifetime.

When reading a chart, the fourth house governs:

  • Happiness, education, and beliefs
  • The mother, relatives, and one’s home
  • One’s motherland, customs, and traditions
  • Schools, houses, and holy places
  • Vehicles, cattle, and agriculture
  • Water, rivers, and oceans
  • Comfort, emotional security, and the heart
  • Milk, perfumes, and medicinal herbs.
  • Leaving one’s place of birth

The Fifth House

Known as the House of Children, the fifth house is measured from 30°-60° below the western horizon. This house relates to one’s dharma, or sense of purpose, from the vantage point of what they will bring into the world.

When viewing a chart, the fifth house reveals:

  • One’s progeny, legacy, and creative works
  • One’s students, disciples, and followers
  • Royalty, politics, and social gatherings
  • Wisdom, creativity, and scriptural knowledge
  • Entrepreneurship, investments, and gambling
  • Luck, affluence, and far-sightedness
  • Piety, devotion to God, and charity
  • The stomach, intuition, and success
  • Sobriety, discrimination, and depth of character

The Sixth House

Alternately known as the House of Enemies or Disease, the sixth house is measured from the western horizon to 30° below it. This house shows the various obstacles that come between a person and their goals.

In an astrological chart, the sixth house signifies:

  • Anxiety, fear, and debts
  • Enemies, thieves, and diseases
  • Opposition, vices, and distress
  • Punishment, prisons, and atonement
  • Service, dignity, and empowerment
  • Victimhood and curses
  • Conflict, divorce, and lawsuits
  • Weapons, injuries, and criticism
  • Poison, drugs, and cures

The Seventh House

Opposing and complementary pair to the first house, the seventh house is known as the House of Partners. This house is a primary indicator for marriage and other serious partnerships. It is measured from the western horizon to 30° above it.

When looking at a chart, the seventh house indicates:

  • The spouse, sexual partner, and eros
  • Conceiving children and extramarital affairs
  • Marital happiness, the bed, and the house
  • Faithfulness, alliances, and contracts
  • Lost wealth, getting lost in travel, and forgetfulness
  • Travel, change of residence, and one’s death
  • The waist, hips, and groin
  • Business partnerships, roads, and avenues of commerce
  • Chastity and moral or immoral conduct

The Eighth House

The eighth house sits opposite to the second, and is alternately known as the House of Death or Rebirth. It is measured from 30° to 60° above the western horizon. Like the fourth house, the eighth is also viewed as a house of liberation, for it determines one’s relationship with the supernatural.

When reading a chart, the eighth house governs:

  • Longevity and the time & cause of death
  • Hidden wealth, secrets, and the occult
  • Scandals, obstacles, and defeat
  • Grief, calamity, and sins committed in past lives
  • Fatigue, criminal activity, and trouble to one’s spouse
  • Revolutions, natural disasters, the unexpected
  • The genitals, womb, and anus
  • Crossing waters or other treacherous landscapes
  • Spiritual revelation and paranormal activity

The Ninth House

Known as the House of Dharma or Religion, the ninth house compliments the third. It is measured from 60° to 90° above the western horizon. The ninth house reveals how one finds purpose in the world around them.

When interpreting a chart, the ninth house signifies:

  • Dharma, religion, and righteousness
  • Devotion, morality, and pious acts
  • The guru, the father, and counselors
  • Salvation, sacrifice, and one’s destiny
  • Prayer, alms, and good deeds from past lives
  • One’s ideology, temples, and the spine
  • Truth, religious teachings, and scripture
  • Pilgrimages, sacred places, and the afterlife
  • Fortune, prosperity, and benevolence

The Tenth House

The tenth house is known as the House of Careers, and is measured from 60°-90° below the eastern horizon. Like the second and sixth houses, the tenth is a house of values. It shows the ways and means by which a person pursues their goals.

In an astrological chart, the tenth house reveals:

  • Profession, work, and means of livelihood
  • The kingdom, commoners, law and order
  • The father, dignity, and respect
  • Rank, status, position, and authority
  • One’s career, business, and industriousness
  • Duties, obligations, and rules
  • The knees, the back, and the sky
  • Activity, sleep, and renunciation
  • Orders, manners, and leadership

The Eleventh House

Alternately known as the House of Gains or Friends, the eleventh house reveals the networks through which our desires come to fruition. It is measured from 30° to 60° above the eastern horizon.

When looking at a chart, the eleventh house shows:

  • Gain of money, gifts, or other valuables
  • Gain of knowledge and learning, and friends
  • The son- or daughter-in-law, and the father’s siblings
  • One’s hopes, aspirations, and their fulfillment
  • Praise, income, and supernatural gifts
  • Good news, business profits, and inheritances
  • Harvests, outcomes, and prizes
  • Economies, networks, and marketplaces
  • Communities, ideas, and limiting factors

The Twelfth House

The last house in astrology, the twelfth is known as the House of Losses, and also the House of Liberation. It is measured from the eastern horizon to 30° above it.

  • Losses, expenses, and bad news
  • Squandering, misfortune, and sexual pleasures
  • Falling down (physically or figuratively)
  • Suicide, loss of spouse, and impotency
  • Mental distress, poverty, and confinement
  • Dreams, the subconscious, and one’s private life
  • Loss of home, refugees, and long journeys
  • The feet, disability, and loss of a limb
  • Ends, forgiveness, and ultimate liberation

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