The word ‘astrology’ comes from the Latin ‘astrologia’ which is derived from the Greek words ‘Astron’, constellation or star, and ‘logia’, the study of, so the literal translation of the word ‘astrology’ is ‘the study of the stars’.

There are many traditions of the sixth house in astrology ranging from the Vedic, the oldest form of astrology, to the Chinese and Egyptian traditions. This article will focus on Western astrology.

Astrological readings are based on your birth details; time, date and place of birth. Astrologers will use the positions of the planets when you were born to determine how they will affect different areas of your lives. For example, the sign mercury occupied when you were born will show how your mind works. Venus shows the way your heart works and the way you relate to others and the moon describes the way your emotions work.

There are 12 Astrological signs each representing different attributes of personality.

  • Aries – Heady, energetic, experiential, assertive & independent
  • Taurus – slow, relaxed, practical, loyal, persistent & talented
  • Gemini – interesting, communicative, intelligent & witty
  • Cancer – moody, sensitive, caring, affectionate & loving
  • Leo – playful, proud, passionate, creative & fun
  • Virgo – focused, discerning, skilful, flexible & present
  • Libra – charming, peaceful, polite, artistic & diplomatic
  • Scorpio – intense, feeling, passionate, involved & probing
  • Sagittarius – enthusiastic, adventurous, joyful & experiential
  • Capricorn – sincere, structured, disciplined, ambitious & cautious
  • Aquarius – spontaneous, rebellious & changeable
  • Pisces – trusting, sensitive, psychic, artistic & adaptable

Most people know what star sign they are. This is known as your ‘sun sign’ and is who we are and what we identify with. But knowing your sun sign is far from the whole picture. The other planets in your solar system also have a part to play.

The Zodiac sign coming over the horizon at birth is known in astrology as the Rising Sign or Ascendant. The ascendant governs the personality and qualities used to express ones self.

The Ascendant begins the first house of any chart. A chart is divided into 12 parts or houses. The way these houses are divided depends on what method we use. If we use the ‘Equal House’ system, each of the houses are equal in size. If we use the ‘Placidus House’ system, which takes into account that we are born on the surface of the planet rather than at the centre, the houses are not divided equally.

The 12 houses relate to different aspects of life:

The First House rules new beginnings and the ways in which we express ourselves.

The Second House governs our talents and abilities, personal finances and resources.

The Third House relates to communications and learning, and also siblings.

The Fourth House is to do with the home and family.

The Fifth House is the house of hobbies and pastimes.

The Sixth House relates to work, duty, service, health and healing.

The Seventh House signifies our connection with others.

The Eighth House represents joint finances.

The Ninth House is the House of higher education, travel and experiences that teach us about life.

The Tenth House is associated with responsibilities and commitment.

The Eleventh House is the house of friends and socialising.

The Twelfth House is associated with meditation and aloneness.

We will use the ‘Equal House’ system.

On a chart the houses are drawn in an anti clockwise direction. The first house begins at 9 o’clock which means the second house will be at 8 o’clock, the third house at seven o’clock and so on until we reach the twelfth house at 10 o’clock.