In the 8th House, we endured a great deal of difficult, challenging, traumatic experiences, and the personal transformation that came from these life-altering events shifted our entire world view. The world isn't what we thought it was, and people are far stranger, crueler, and more complex than we imaged them to be. Art and media is much deeper than it first seemed, and contains languages and multitudes and meanings we were unaware of. Our homelands, once a source of comfort and pride, are built on slavery, genocide, and human subjugation, and the legacy of those things is still seen and felt today. Now in the 9th House, we can't go back to seeing the world as innocently as we did before. Out of the cave, we have to move forward, and do our best to teach others what we've learned.
Back in the opposite realm of the 3rd House, we learned how to think, speak, and move about our immediate environment, sticking close to the facts, to the familiar, and our own point of view. Now, in 9th House, we venture outside our own perspective and see the world through the eyes of other people. This is a House of understanding and expansion. This is not a place for science and facts - it's where we attempt to offer answers to life’s big, unanswerable questions, and where we study profound topics more in-depth and offer our own insight into the world.
IF YOUR CHART WERE AN ACTUAL HOUSE
The 9th House would be items that mark pivotal moments of enlightenment and learning, such as travel souvenirs, diplomas, and spiritual teachings. You can see the 9th House in a person's prayers, on their alter, and in the ways they honour the dead. It is in the heated arguments about religion and politics, in demanding to be heard and refusing to listen. But just as much, it is in the heart and good intentions of those with deeply held beliefs about what would make the world a better place, and in each individual's vision for what that utopia would look like.
DOMAIN OF THE 9th HOUSE
Opening your mind to new, foreign ideas, points of view, and ways of understanding the world (gaining new perspective, seeing the "big picture")
"Long-distance travel", meaning travel away from the familiar and into the foreign, or exotic
Beliefs (philosophy, ideas, politics, religion, spirituality, enlightenment, profound subjects)
Humanities (art, culture, history, travel)
Higher learning, describing teachers, spiritual leaders, the school environment, and your fellow students
PLANETS IN THE ninth HOUSE
What spurs people to try to answer the unanswerable? Most would say that it is our human nature, the by product of an advanced human consciousness trying to make sense of the universe. In truth, we all try to apply meaning to the events that occur in our lives. We say it is all fate, or the will of the gods, or “meant to be”, or destiny – thus giving some structure and some purpose to the otherwise random happenings that dot our lives. There have been troubling events in your life; ones so dark and difficult they have made you start asking these bigger questions. Many times it is devastation and transformative change that pushes you out the door – a death, a divorce, violence, or emotional turmoil. You begin to question why these events had to happen and what significance they held. Why did this happen to you? Why did that that person do what they did? The 9th House seeks to find underlying patterns connecting the universe together as much as it seeks answers to humanity’s problems. Pushed out with no home to turn back to, you look out to the world for insight and for answers. But where might those answers lie?
When life happens and you want to run away from it all (like actually leave your house and go somewhere), you are acting through this placement. The 9th House is also that of Long Distance Journeys. You travel to all corners of the globe: mentally, through the study of faraway places; physically, actually getting on a boat or a plane and venturing off somewhere; and spiritually, connecting with belief systems all over the world. The Higher Mind must have a source of inspirational ideas to expand upon, and your biggest inspiration seems to be the world at large. It might be outside of a club at 2am talking to someone who just entered your country yesterday, or it may be an afternoon hidden in the library. It could be a particularly troubling story on the evening news, a new food you tried, something you read in the morning paper, or something you came across while backpacking across Europe. Through your open-minded exploration of people and the world, foreign or familiar, new ideas flow through you and collect inside your memory. And answers come to you in droves with every new bit of information that finds its way to you.
The House that the Moon sits in your natal chart is always in a state of flux. Like the tides, your beliefs rolls and change over time. Your ideas and opinions fall back and forth in rhythmic progression, fluctuating with your moods. As the face of the Moon changes over the course of a month so does your philosophical views, spirituality, and moral principles. Yet, as changeable as you may be, there is constancy in that you are always emotionally in tune with your higher mind. Your intuition guides you to the beliefs that are right for you in that moment. Although your opinions on certain topics may change based on how you feel that day, you tenaciously hold onto certain points of view. Your personal philosophy (and your code of ethics) consistently advocates love, empathy, nurturing, and compassion for all people. You are for peace, understanding, and the freedom to express oneself, and against censorship, dogma, and overreaching authority. In seeking security in your beliefs you commit to them, holding onto them and never letting go. But there is room for you to weave back and forth from one idea to the next, often picking up on the emotions and ideas of whomever you are around.
Yours is a gentle way of being, but you aren’t afraid to unleash your emotions when you are feeling oppressed. One should not mistake your tender-hearted advocacy for sympathy for any sort of weakness. You feel very passionately about the ways that humanity treats one another (and this world). Especially when you have a rallying cry to pound into the masses, you are especially talented in delivering your emotionally-fueled ideas through art and writing. We all have moments of deep emotional pain – the death of a loved one, divorce, or a sudden transformation that we struggle to cope with. In times such as these we often run away to another place, another home, or even another country. You are familiar with these instances where you have been so emotionally distraught that you up and leave, taking yourself somewhere far away from what made you upset. You then travel both mentally and physically to get a bigger-picture perspective on your own emotions. Asking lots of questions and questing for their answers is part of the journey. Open-minded exploration is part of the adventure.
Mercury does not function very well within this house. This is the planet that wants to analyze, in finer detail, all the practical mechanical parts of life. It wants to see facts. Mercury is in your chart to take in information and deliver into your brain as it actually is, with no bias or assumption; just pure, untouched, communication from the outside in and the inside out. But placed in the 9th House, your mind does not want to be limited only to the realms of reality. No, you want to explore the untouched lands of ideas and swim in the waters of human culture. You are much too big picture to be confined to the rules of science and reality as we know them. You want to get lost in your imagination and think about the esoteric why more than the finite how. You do not have the patience for tedious details. The superficial and the mundane do nothing for you. You want a reason to think deeply about a subject, to figure it out, to form your own opinions on it. You therefore have much more of an interest in profound topics where you come to your own conclusion rather than facts that can be proven. In a way, you are a student of humanity more so than reality.
You are drawn to subjects that offer to expand your mind and introduce you to methods of thinking beyond what you would normally consider. All the humanities are included here. History gives you a perspective on time, human accomplishments and development, and offers some clarity in solving the problems we encounter today. Art and literature enrich your mind and allow you a glimpse into the mind of creative individuals. Philosophy (the love of wisdom) and theology (the study of religion) deepens your thoughts and quenches your thirst for truth. Culture and psychology offer a perspective like history does, but in a way that is current, colourful, alive, and experienced first-hand. And social justice issues regarding gender, ethnicity, sexuality, economics, and the like all allow you to form relevant opinions about topics that matter today. Your mind feeds off of these subjects and others like them because those are the things that catch and keep your attention. Being interested in expanding your point of view by learning and adopting that of others, you find it fulfilling to take part in higher education. Though you distance yourself from claims to absolute truth, you still believe that everything can be figured out intellectually.
Your best relationships are with others who take part in expanding your mind. You are able to get along well with open-minded people of various ethnic, cultural, and religious backgrounds; if you are to discriminate, it would be against ignorance and apathy. You get along well with people who offer you deep, thought-provoking topics to discuss and who possess as open a mind as you do. In this way you are receptive to new ideas and new points of view, allowing others to freely discuss their passions without feeling shut out or ignored. People like to be around you because of how politely you listen, how interested you are in what they have to say, and how much of your own knowledge you have to offer. Late-night conversations about philosophy, spirituality, ideas, concepts, theories, ethics, and even just personal views are some of the most enlightening nights of your life. For these reasons you are drawn towards Sagittarius-types of personalities. These people neglect to follow the “rules” dictated by society, instead following their own wandering hearts to wherever they want to go. They are full of ideas and impossible dreams – and gladly listen to yours, when you can get a hold of them.
Few things are more pleasurable or more beautiful than philosophy, culture, and spirituality – especially when these are linked to your relationships. You have a very liberal attitude towards sex, gender, and sexualities, curiously exploring these facets of your own life with interest. Unlike others who may recoil at the notion of anything other than what is “traditional” in that regard, you appreciate the different kinds of affairs people take part in. You are not uncomfortable around homosexuality, drag, or the many gender identities people colour themselves with. If anything you are exceptionally knowledgeable about the topic. As well, you are delightfully open to many different kinds of relationships yourself – open or committed, sexually discreet or not so much, perhaps even undecided as to your own sexual orientation. But no matter what you settle on, you wouldn’t dream about not accepting other people based on the kinds of relationships they find themselves in. You have a much larger, big-picture take that advocates acceptance and tolerance of people unlike one another. Relationships and sex are two profound topics which you think very deeply about. To limit how far your mind can venture outward is to limit your ability to experience life itself.
Your inner fire is ignited over topics like religion, philosophy, spirituality, history, economics, law, cultures, government, and law. But your fire can also run wildly out of control if you allow yourself to get worked up, resulting in aggressive (even violent) conflicts surrounding your beliefs. You clash with others when these topics are brought up. It is very likely that you were raised under a stricter, more oppressive religious upbringing, for example, and rebellion against your church was one way of willful action. You may have viewed the church as an antagonistic, oppressive force marked by a history of violence. Women especially feel marginalized when they have this placement, feeling their right to sexual liberation is taken away by the largely male congregation. Or instead you may have been raised by a very political family and rebelled against them by taking a radically different path. In this case you feel it is the government or certain political parties which threaten you, and it is your duty to fight for your rights and your freedoms. Mars is where you feel you need to fight to get yourself ahead. And perhaps no one knew this better than one of the greatest fighters of all time: Muhammad Ali.
Muhammad Ali, who also had Mars in the 9th House, constructed his identity around his faith and his fighting. He changed his name from Cassius Clay to Muhammad Ali when he joined the Nation of Islam. His aggression already present in his career as a boxer made its way into his belief structure. Growing up in the USA during segregation in the pre-civil rights era he retained much anger (some may even say hatred) towards white people. For a black man to not only be proud of his race, but to also convert to a religion other than Christianity, all while beating out white athletes at lightning speed, made him a highly controversial figure at the time. During his career he received scathing criticism for his offensive remarks about white oppression. His trash-talking may have been promoted in the ring, but audiences were not prepared for what he had to say about the world at large. “My enemy is the white people, not the Viet Cong ... You're my opposer when I want freedom. You're my opposer when I want justice. You're my opposer when I want equality. You won't even stand up for me in America because of my religious beliefs, and you want me to go somewhere and fight, when you won't even stand up for my religious beliefs at home.”
Your life with (or without, as the case may have been) your parents was very hard. Themes of loss, trauma, unfortunate twists of fate, and difficult transformative changes persisted throughout your childhood. Growing out of these troubling experiences you emerged disoriented, left asking “Why?” more times than you could count. Why did this happen to me? Why did this person do that? What compels them to act this way? Why was I born into this family? Why did God or Karma or the Universe put me here? Struggling to find meaning in your suffering, you got upset and ran away more times than you can count. In trying to put as much distance as possible between yourself and your troubling home life, you disconnected and went searching for your own truths. It is natural for people, after they have had something particularly devastating happen to them, to leave and begin wandering out on their own. Searching for answers, you ponder what the greater meaning might be. That is when your interest in the 9th House really begins to take hold.
This is when you begin to look to philosophy and spirituality for your answers. You are not looking for a mathematical equation or a list of facts as to why your parents did what they did. You are looking for profound meaning. Sure, in running away you tend to leave events in the past and frequently “forget” the details, favouring something fun and exciting to do right now. But eventually you will return to these topics and your questions, trying to tag some significance to what you went through and why. To gain a better perspective you pull out and examine the bigger picture. You look at your family as an entire unit, looking at things from every person’s point of view, in order to gain a better understanding of the underlying patterns at play. You include their personal histories and the economic, psychological, and social influences that affected them from the outside as well. Then you pull out even further, looking at family dynamics on an even grander scale. You look at parenthood and child psychology; the history of child rearing; the philosophies and religious teachings involved. By opening your mind, educating yourself, and expanding your perspective, you begin to understand things much better.
Jupiter is content within this house. Jupiter’s sign placement shows what is true to us, while his house placement shows where we seek and find that truth. The 9th House rules over all forms of profound ideas, so in short you find truth where wise men have walked before you. All kinds of humanistic studies, including all those found in the Liberal Arts, will appeal to you for this reason. These include history, politics, law, and economics, where you can study the dominating ideas that run this world. An interest in travelling and other cultures could lead you to anthropology and languages, where people and their customs open your eyes beyond the environment you were raised in. A more human-centered interest in behaviour and the mind could lead you into psychology. Or if you consider yourself to be of the more esoteric variety, philosophy and theology and the study thereof may be more your style. All of these person-centered subjects prove to be highly stimulating for you, and they end up being the basis for all of your personal beliefs. You find truth when you look into the eyes of humanity, be it in a concrete or spiritual sense.
Your attraction to wisdom and knowledge is what fuels those long nights reading about Karl Marx or questioning Melanie Klein’s child analysis. You can spend hours comparing Eastern and Western philosophies, communist or capitalist economies, or commenting on various religious views and what they mean. The sharing of profound ideas and opinions, of partaking in intellectual conversation, is a primary source of excitement and yes, even talent, for you. You are a natural teacher and philosopher, preaching the wisdom you have adopted into your worldview. Of those teachings you have decidedly integrated into yourself, the majority are enlightened, kind, and positive. You ascribe mostly to the beliefs of things getting better, of having a sense of humour, of the importance of open-mindedness and being educated. These optimistic and aspiring attitudes are the basis for your adventurous desires to explore the world and learn all about it. As is your strong moral principles about being open to new experiences.
You take your beliefs very seriously. In true Saturn, goal-setting fashion, you pick a certain philosophy or ideology and you stick with it for a very long time. You work on it like it’s your job. You commit to it like it is something you could realistically achieve in your lifetime. But in the meantime you are plagued by feelings of doubt and anxiety, sometimes losing your faith altogether. The journey to self-discovering can run so long that is begins to feel like a chore. As well, you are a born cynic who remains skeptical of everything, and that makes it hard to believe. Many with this position settle on nihilism (nothing matters, nothing is real, one must be skeptical and pessimistic about everything) and atheism. Some may discover Albert Camus’ (who had this position) absurdism, which proposes that humanity’s search for meaning is bound to fail no matter what. Knowing that other authors feel the same as you may bring you some comfort. And yet it is ruefully unfulfilling.
Everything you believe in, from your views, morality, faith, and all your opinions, center around issues of control. Control is a big theme in your personal philosophy and your spirituality. The truth and the meaning that you are seeking are on the opposite end of all your fears and anxieties about a larger system working against you. For some, they imagine a corrupt government, shady corporations, or a vengeful God running the world they live in. For others it is bad luck working against them or twists of fate that turn them on their head. The answers you search for have to be absolute, definite, undoubtable answers. Fearful, cautious Saturn affects not only the way you view this house, but how you work within it. Your approach is very methodical, convinced that there is a right way of doing things best. You were probably raised under a strict religious household where parents (or grandparents) taught you of the judgemental God who had to be obeyed. These messages about sticking by the exact letter of the law stuck with you and now form the basis for many of your beliefs.
In the Italian town of Turin in the winter of 1889, the philosopher Friedrich Nietzsche had his now-infamous mental breakdown in the public streets of the city. Upon witnessing a horse being beaten by its driver, he allegedly threw his arms around the creature to protect it, yelling the words, “I understand you!” “That which does not kill me makes me stronger,” is another one of his famous quotes, most quoted by those struggling to get through. This was a man with whom you share this placement of Chiron in the 9th House, and whose personal philosophy you may be interested in learning about. In its sign placement,
Chiron is really powerful when placed in this house. When confronted with the enormous amount of suffering and despair there is in life, one method of coping is to develop a philosophy through which we can reason with it. Pure nihilism in the face of ongoing tragedy (believing that there is no meaning in it, suffering serves no purpose, and that life itself is pointless) is tempting. And yet, it is ruefully unfulfilling. Having your personal wounds lie in the house of philosophy means that your suffering compels you to become a teacher and to heal others through common messages of shared pain. While you yourself may never feel satisfied – moving frequently, travelling often, always trying to “get away” from your problems by uprooting yourself – you seek to empower others by teaching them about how to better think about their pain. “To live is to suffer, to survive is to find some meaning in the suffering,” is something that readily applies here. You believe that pain is real, and true, and that overcoming one’s hardship is the only way to grow and develop into a better person. You speak the truth bluntly and caustically, without holding back any of the sting in your words, because you believe that a person needs to hear it. You are not trying to be cruel and cynical when you expose a wound in someone else. Although they may resent you as if you were trying to hurt them, since it certainly seems as though you are. No, your attack of their defense mechanisms is merely an extension of your personal philosophy. Mainly, the importance of self-overcoming and a person encountering and rising above whatever life throws at them.
Uranus does not fit as well in this house as one might think. When approaching profound philosophies, theologies, and the study of humanity, one must be willing to take the time to slow down and take the time necessary for real understanding. Philosophy is not something that can be eaten up in large gulps in large quantities. It has to be digested slowly over long periods of time. It needs to work its way into the mind slowly and deeply, or else one leaves with only a rudimentary understanding of the offered truth. Uranus seldom has time to process things slowly – the nature of the planet is to spontaneously change course and follow its unique flashes of inspiration. It takes only enough time as needed before sparking a revolution in this area of your life, which means that you may try to change ideas to make them your own before you fully understand them. The natural electromagnetism of Uranus is suffocated under the weighty task of understanding philosophical questions and the maze of intellectual answers that balloon out of them. Not wanting to be trapped any longer, you skip away to something else.
The kinds of ideas, beliefs, and philosophies that do stick with you are all revolutionary in nature. You have unorthodox views of humanity and society, and are in turn viewed as a radical, rebellious individual. You have different kind of thoughts, a different relationship with divinity; your belief systems, political views, and ideas of how the world should be are all unconventional in some way. You involve yourself in unusual branches of study which produce unusual brands of wisdom. And even that is forever changing as you rapidly grow into something completely different. The public backlash against your daring ideas is very real, and very expected. The world is not prepared for the truth you spit, and you will be considered “too weird” to take seriously for quite a long time. Due to your rebellious nature, you will forever have problems with establishment and authority. You revolt against conventional, traditional, conservative, or closed-minded attitudes, and you are absolutely convinced that your new radical point of view is the right way of thinking. Especially when it comes to education and faith, you despite religious dogma and restrictive thinking.
When Neptune is here you long to walk with disciples and meditate with mystics; to bind your soul to the ancient earth and feel qi running through your body. The search to connect and combine all basic principles is strong, especially between those that teach peace, love, and that all human souls are united. You understand all religions, cultures, and practices, even those that have been lost to time. But be warned –you must guard yourself against those who look to deceive you through their pious “teachings”. You use your Neptunian imagination to dream up the paradise that awaits you in the afterlife or the enlightenment you will no doubt reach some day. She gives you compassionate morality, empathetic ethics, spiritual views, and escapist hope for the future. Yet others condemn your beliefs to exist solely in your imagination, accusing you of superstition and casting doubt on the truths you propagate to the world. Still, the 9th House does not deal in facts; it deals in faith, beliefs, views, opinions, and ideas – abstract concepts that cannot be proven true or false anyway.
In this way, Neptune does very well in this house. The collective powers of Neptune combined with the far-reaching journeying of the 9th combine to guide you on long spiritual quests for truth and meaning. It is hard to picture you without religious beliefs, spirituality, artistic imagination, or secular practices. Aleister Crowley wrote of this position, “The native will have an extraordinarily pure and lofty conception of God and nature. His aspirations will be strong, so strong that they may carry him away completely from this earth, and induce him to devote the whole of his life to the most arduous and subtle researches into the glories by which he is surrounded.” Various astrologers have advised skepticism when faced with religious authorities and their teachings, however; you are susceptible to blind gullibility when promised with guidance of this sort. Your openness to experience of the 9th House sort makes it difficult to see things clearly, as everything is cast in a haze of confusion. However, the same Neptunian influence that refuses to set boundaries also insists on seeing the world and all its people as part of one, beautiful collective – a big picture view that advocate peace between all foreign cultures.
Abbé Pierre was a former Catholic priest who supported same-sex adoption, the ordination of women, and the use of contraceptives for sex. He criticized the Vatican for their visibly ornate and expensive lifestyle, while he himself dedicated his life to serving the poor, taking care of the homeless, and leading diplomatic missions across the world. The famous artist Michelangelo also had disputes with the church, particularly over his work in the Sistine Chapel. Already frustrated by being forced to paint (he was a sculptor), he became frustrated with various religious leaders who criticized the nudity and the ways religious figures were represented. Yet they would not allow him to quit, forcing him to paint when he did not want to. In subtle retaliation he painted a cherub behind Pope Julius II giving him a particularly rude gesture known as “the fig”. He also painted the gateway to hell directly behind the Pope’s chair and depicted Biagio of Cesena (the pope’s assistant) as a demon with the ears of an ass whose penis was being eaten by a serpent. Both men having Pluto in their 9th House, they found themselves followers of religious faith and yet critical of the leaders of the larger organized religion.
Franklin D. Roosevelt became president of the United States during the Dirty Thirties and remained in power through to the end of WWII. He was both renowned and criticized for the controversial policies he enacted during his presidency. For example, he is known for both advocacy for minority groups and union workers in the New Deal and his failure to act upon lynching in the south or the Holocaust in the war. He was accused of being anti-business and power-hungry for the limitations he placed on Wall Street following the Great Depression. Yet FDR is still touted as one of the greatest presidents of all time and his policies, though now largely dissolved, are what he is celebrated for still today. John F. Kennedy, another American President, was also controversial at the time but celebrated in the years after his death. Locked in Cold War battles against communism the world over, he advocated for free markets and an end to repressive regimes. Domestically he promoted the civil rights movement and government-funded programs targets at poor, rural area of the US. Both presidents reined in times of war, fought against their own people for civil rights for minority groups, and contested for government programs where money made its way to the people that needed it.