4 November 2014 0 Comments

Changing places – astrological houses

Astrological HousesAstrological musical chairs


A common misunderstanding is that the people in our lives, represented by planets, can change places in the horoscope according to how we feel. The premise seems to be that feelings and sentimental stirrings determine how the horoscope is organised. A type of astrological ‘musical chairs’! The assumption seems to be that all everything revolves around their existence

But seriously the arrangement of the houses is not based on how we feel. Some may entertain this notion from a sentimental point of view but the horoscope is not a projection of our feelings. It’s about objective reality. The horoscope is not only about the person represented but also portrays their biological connections and place in surrounding world.

Where other people fit into the horoscope is determined by familial relationships and social roles, not by feelings. Biology and social place help define us. Once we start shifting people around because of how we feel our capacity to be objective is diminished. One common example is the parent-child relationship. Some parents endeavour to treat their children as friends, as equals, and in questions on astrology will assign their children to the 7th or 11th house. Relationships with adult children are sometimes treated the same way.

However our children are our children and our parents are our parents. This biological fact cannot change and neither do the planets which represent them in our horoscope. Try as we might to change these relationships in a behavioural context, the horoscope is unmoved.

We live in such a narcissistic age that many believe the horoscope will conform to their feelings. How ridiculous! The horoscope is not an extension of one’s feelings. Yes it can represent one’s feelings in certain ways but feelings do not determine which houses represent the people in one’s life. The reverse is true: it is the houses which represent the people in one’s life.

In astrology we don’t play musical chairs. The houses have set meanings and the people they represent do not slip slide around according to our whims and fancies.

Astrology deals with reality and once we start messing with planetary significators astrology starts to lose its validity.


I had a conversation recently with an astrologer who said she loved her dog as much as any mother loves her baby and therefore regarded questions about her dog as a 5th house matter. Needless to say she had no children of her own.

As you may know pets are represented by the 6th and the 5th house is reserved for babies. If this woman had ever given birth to a child any confusion she had on the matter would have evaporated instantly if her dog   attacked her baby. Whatever sentimental feelings we may have for a pet, it is still a pet.

Until humans start giving birth to pets the 5th house represents children and the 6th house represents pets. The person’s relationship with a pet may be incredibly loving, but that does not make it a human baby. Humans are humans and biological bonds run very deep.

Again the mistake in attributing pets to the 5th house is the premise that emotional ties determine house rulership. This is not good astrology.

Working relationships

I sometimes also encounter astrologers who see pets as a 7th house matter because they have a working relationship with the animal. Guide dogs, sheep dogs and ponies are sometimes included in this category.

However the 7th house is about equal relationships. The 6th house is about unequal relationships. If a pet is in a working relationship that is a 6th house matter. It is the human who is in charge, and it is the pet which is providing services for the human. The same applies when we contract a sub-contractor or employ someone: that person is represented by the 6th house.
Just because we have a relationship with someone or a pet that does not automatically make it a 7th house matter. It depends on the nature of the relationship, not how much we love the pet.
We can’t assume that because the 7th house covers our romantic relationships that it covers all relationships. There are many different types of relationships and just because the word relationship is used does not mean we can equate it with a romantic human relationship.

We have business and other relationships which belong in the 7th house. These can be adversarial or cooperative, but what they have in common is that the two people are roughly on an equal footing. Pets are never on an equal footing with humans, no matter how sentimental about the pet we may be.

Further learning

Below I have listed the lessons from my correspondence course which I have recently made available for purchase. These are suitable for beginning students and those at an intermediate level who wish to refresh and update their astrological knowledge.

Lesson 4: Understanding the houses
Lesson 5: House meanings 1-6
Lesson 6: House meanings 7-12
Lesson 6B: How the identify significators
Lesson 6C: Method for derived houses

Horary Astrology Reading Request a reading. Most subjects covered.

The Horary Astrology Practitioners Diploma correspondence course contains the foundation principles for natal and modern astrology.

The Palmistry Practitioners Diploma correspondence Course provides basic logical principles underlying hand reading as well as the "how-to" practical application about how to read the hands.

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