The tripartite division of the quadrants is seen as a completion of the pure potentialities expressed by the cross of the incarnation.

Italian Version

Continuing the lesson of a previous post, let’s now address the theme of the tripartition of the quadrants, which gives rise to the subsequent categorisations.

The Angular Houses

As seen in the symbolism of the cross, angular Houses have as their initial reference the axes of the incarnation cross. Thus, the 1st and 7th Houses represent self-revelation through others, the origin of the form creating simultaneously the space of representation, in which we know and are known. For this reason, we say that the Ascendant represents the personality and the mask, or how we appear to others. On the other hand, the Imum Coeli – Midheaven axis refers to the vertical dimension of existence or the inner and outer ways of responding to our perception of ourselves and others. At this point, we must understand how it is not possible to isolate the meaning of axes, quadrants and hemispheres without considering their mutual interaction. As a result, at their intersection point, we have the meeting of intuition, perception, sensation and intellect, all revolving around the self motionless motor, which, however ‘empty’, constitutes the raison d’être of the individual epiphany.

The Succedent Houses

The Succedent Houses (2nd, 5th, 8th and 11th) represent the reaction to the action of Angular Houses or their immediate sphere of representation. There are two possibilities: if the focus remains centred on the angular factor, or if self-awareness remains intact during the expressive act, then the fruit of the action is a harmonious and comprehensive expression of the agent. Otherwise, if creation takes over and claims its independence, the divisive aspects prevail: the individual becomes controlled by their making. In the relationships between Angular and Succedent Houses, we have:

  1. From 1st to 2nd House: Self-awareness acquires solidity through the earthly inheritance; the human being fertilises the earth with his intuition or derives material advantages from it; in the negative case, materialism.
  2. From 4th to 5th House: The inner potential becomes creative and reproduces itself in particular forms or original actions and thoughts as a natural expression of the sense of intimate certainty and stability; in the negative case, the energy is lost in the selfish self-affirmation without a proper foundation.
  3. From 7th to 8th House: The other’s awareness becomes affectional sharing thanks to the sacrifice of individual barriers; in the negative, inability to offer oneself to the other, resulting in disintegrating relationships.
  4. From 10th to 11th House: Extra-individual fulfilment in a social sense meets the evolutionary potential offered by aspiration and desire for plans and developments; these projections take on a utopian value in the negative.

The Cadent Houses

The Cadent Houses (3rd, 6th, 9th and 12th) represent the significant synthesis of the two preceding houses, the result of the contact between the primordial condition of the Angular House with the expressive sphere of the Succedent House; in this way, the concept of unity expressed by the Angular House is recreated, but this time on a more focused level, as a result of our effective or deceptive model of integration of the formative impulse of the previous houses:

  1. From 2nd to 3rd House: Integration between the self and genetic and substantial inheritance through the development of the nervous system, also revealed in the relationship between familial elements (brothers and sisters) or short-range contacts (family, neighbourhood, short trips). On the negative side: The excessive weight given to hereditary and material elements to the detriment of the formation of the self leads to a more or less accentuated imbalance of one’s psyche and conflicting relationships with the surrounding environment.
  2. From 5th to 6th House: The efficient individual expression of inner potentials generates a daily rhythm well adapted to the circumstances, in the form of others’ availability and an environment that conforms to one’s needs. On the negative side: ego excesses cause conflicts and states of psychophysical imbalance that lead to illness.
  3. From 8th to 9th House: The capacity for transformation that springs from the acceptance of the relationships pins towards an expansion of consciousness no longer limited by individual boundaries, free internally to overcome the usual terms of thought and externally to increase knowledge of the world example by travelling. On the negative side: The inability or impossibility of managing relationships accentuates the destructive aspect of the individual transformation, proposing the same type of experience, but this time experienced as a painful catharsis.
  4. From 11th to 12th House: The finalisation of existential projects and aspirations is a prelude to a state of transition containing the impulse towards a new personality made of altruism and nobility of soul. In the negative: The hopes dictated by ideals are vain; life becomes like a prison – unlived – or a return to a cycle of slavery until a new vision arrives.

In completing this tripartition, we express the Trinitarian symbolism concept: presenting the One in the multiple, the substance dressing in a form. The predominance of planetary configurations in one or more of these sectors will indicate, from the perspective of individual evolution, on which parts one must work to obtain the harmonic expression of oneself.

The sequence of the 12 Houses

Rudhyar again proposes an association between houses and their meaning from the point of view of transpersonal astrology. (compared to the original, the contents have been reworked):

  • 1st House: The Sower. The particular destiny impulse, the birth of self-awareness.
  • 2nd House: The Soil. The genetic and material inheritance on which destiny is shaped. The fruition of the physical substance. Wealth, possession.
  • 3rd House: The Seed. Forming a nucleus of synthesis between the self and the sensory impressions gives rise to the first forms of relationship with the surrounding environment – the formative intellect.
  • 4th House. The Soul. The destiny impulse arises from the form, according to the model carried by the father.
  • 5th House. The individual. The manifestation of the self in free expression. Procreation and recreation.
  • 6th House. The Harvest. The relationship between the individual and external circumstances generates the daily rhythm in exercising one’s faculties, bearer of results through work and psychophysical well-being. In the negative: conflicts in everyday life, disease-carrying imbalances.
  • 7th House. The Exchange. The culmination of the individual function leads to recognising the other from oneself as a complementary aspect of one’s evolution – a point of balance between the self and the other.
  • 8th House. The Transmutation. The symbolic death of the individual is a prelude to rebirth on a higher plane as a result of mutual human exchange – the dismissal of forms.
  • 9th House. The Preparation. In the silence of individuality, the plans and architectures arise anticipating the formation of the superior being, open to mental abstractions and active adaptation towards social and transpersonal hierarchies.
  • 10th House. The Fulfilment. Reached the formative apex, the self fulfils itself in the social instances – the mother’s influence as the bearer of a broader frame of reference (national soul).
  • 11th House. The Overcoming. Social instances become the new reference model in relationships, which expand to include new forms of social and friendly relationships — the vision of the ideals and society overcoming the old patterns.
  • 12th House. The Liberation. Destiny is fulfilled. Here two paths open: one leads to yielding to fatalities, to the powers of society that one has not been able to face and redeem, resulting in the personality expressing itself in a circumscribed form by its own misunderstood destiny. The other faces the limiting forces of social conscience by freeing itself from existential inertia through will and sacrifice. Karma is resolved. The inner rhythm dissolves to allow for the shaping of new forms of vibration.

This last type of approach has an evolutionary meaning rather than a mere judicial one. The Houses lose their geometric fixity to become transition states that lead to actualising the intuitive and formative potentials expressed by the angular axes in the context of individual, social and spiritual representation. The tripartite division of the quadrants aims to ‘stabilise’ the evolutionary process in an easily identifiable area of everyday experience. Both the aspects of transition and the setting of experiences can coexist through a renewal process that, while maintaining the symbolic meanings of the underlying configurations, offers forms of representation destined to evolve.

The compromises of domification

The calculation of domification arises from a compromise between two reference systems – equatorial and ecliptic – projected onto the local celestial sphere. In the Placidus domification system, the most widely accepted by astrologers, it is necessary to adopt an arrangement that allows representing on the two-dimensional plane of the horoscope chart the ascensional difference of the signs in respect to the latitude of the observation place. The resultant is a structure where the longitudinal distance between the angular axes differs from the ideal value of 90 degrees due to the inclination of the equatorial axis concerning the ecliptic axis (except at two times of the day, when the equinoctial points intersect the line East-West on the horizon at 0 degrees Aries and 0 degrees Libra). Also, the intermediate houses are consequently affected by this circumstance. For the latitudes beyond the Arctic circle (about 66 degrees north and south), the system enters a critical state; for example, in the winter season, where the sun does not rise, the point of maximum culmination (Midheaven) is below the horizon. There are many solutions proposed to remedy the inherent weaknesses in the various systems, but none has ever gathered a unanimous consensus.

Domification is one of the most controversial aspects of applying three-dimensional celestial and terrestrial relationships on a two-dimensional graph. However, considering that astrology is the reading of a complex symbolism that ultimately unites the consciences of those who ask and those who give the answers, nothing prevents us from thinking that each interpreter employs the domification that best suits their perspective vision. In this way, the formative potentials expressed by the ecliptic planetary positions are led to an expressive reality on the terrestrial plane by the conscience of the observer (the astrologer). Astrologers are then free to grasp the connections presented to them in intimate union with their nature as an integral part of this relationship.


Rudhyar, Dane – The practice of Astrology – Boulder 1978