I’m currently doing a chart for a client who not only has lots of planets in the 8th house but also a key planet in the 12th.
Hence, I thought it useful to revisit symbolism associated with the ‘water houses’ (4th, 8th, 12th) – the following comes from a lecture given by Liz Greene for the CPA in March 2002.
Keywords – Fate, Family Patterns, Connection, Creativity, Gifts, Lack of Control
- Water houses always follow air houses – dissolving our thoughts and ideas (or at least unsettling them). Let’s face it – we do love to cling to our beliefs but at some level we realise that they may not always serve us so well. Ought we not then to be happy to be given an opportunity to clear away our muddled thoughts from time to time?
- Contrary to popular belief, planets in water houses are not unconscious but they do feel ‘fated’. The problem isn’t so much our lack control over the energies these planets represent but that we do not feel comfortable expressing them in the rational, everyday world.
- ‘Fated’ does not necessarily mean that bad things will happen. What it does mean, however, is that we have to work harder to ensure that everything goes well. Water house planets represent our ‘inheritance’ – i.e. family patterns – and let’s face it, not all of those will be nice (so to speak). When dealing with water house planets, we must always keep in mind that this energy is not exclusively ours. In this sense, it is better to think of them as sacred gifts from another realm. If we fail to honour (i.e. give due respect) to our water house planets, they can well prove to be our undoing – this is especially the case 8th house planets.
- Planets in water houses are always about connections. They never ever function alone.
- Water house planets crave a creative outlet and so we must develop some sort of structure/form for that creativity to express itself. For example, many authors and artists have 12th house moons; pick up that paintbrush!
- Look for ‘compulsive’ behavior re: water house planets – guaranteed you’ll find it.
- When it comes to the water houses, no matter how hard EGO tries, it will never be ‘in control’.
|4th house||Father and Fatherland||Our first encounter with ‘fate’ comes from the ‘family daemon’ – i.e. more specifically, our father’s psychological inheritance. In this respect ‘father’ doesn’t necessarily mean our biological fathers (or even personal father figures). The 4th house is more to do with our ‘roots’, which brings to the fore our cultural and social background. The Moon is the natural ruler of this house and so expect poignant dreams and memories not all of which will be pleasant. Learning how to deal constructively with these memories/dreams is one of the lessons to be learned by planets placed in this house. If we try to ignore the ‘family ghosts’, guaranteed that they’ll continue to haunt us with a vengeance.|
|8th house||Halls of Judgement||Our second encounter with ‘fate’ comes from more a generalised inheritance – i.e. a whiff of the stuff lying at the base of Greek tragedy. The 8th house has to do with ‘judgement’ – rewards and/or punishments – that come to us as the result of family patterns operating over decades or even centuries. If only John F Kennedy had decided not to pursue the destructive path of power and corruption that his forefathers had blazed for him, he wouldn’t have been assassinated in Dallas. Anger (possibly repressed) is indicated with planets in this house – Mars is, after all, its natural ruler. The key to working with 8th house planets is to accept that there are some things that we cannot control and/or fix. However, like JFK, we always have a choice as to how to deal with them.|
|12th house||Redemption/Salvation||Our final encounter with fate’ comes from the collective unconscious – that Jungian ‘stuff’ that we share with the rest of humanity. Being in touch with this collective energy (through planets in this house) can be dangerous. To avoid disaster, we must always remain aware of our personal responsibility when working with this power. Neptune is the natural ruler of this house and so there is an element of redemption/salvation at work – ‘buying back’ or ‘paying off’ some debt/ransom (even if not one of our own making). Whatever we do with our 12th house planets, it must be for the benefit of ‘something’ other than ourselves – this does not mean that we have to ‘sacrifice’ this energy in the sense of not getting any personal benefit, but instead it means that we take extra pains to ensure it is used for the greater good.|