Posted by: Donna Cunningham | February 1, 2011

Everything You Ever Wondered about the 8th House…

…But Were Afraid I Might Tell You

©2-1-2011 by Donna Cunningham, MSW

We had a contest in December to come up with new series ideas, and today’s topic was suggested by one of the winners, VR.

I wrote a post about the 12th house right away, because so many people are fearful of their placements there. (Everything You Ever Wanted to Know about the 12th House—but Were Afraid to Ask.) )

There’s really only one other house that scares the bejayzus out of astrology lovers—the 8th.  That’s the house of sex, death, taxes, debts, and money that rightfully belongs to other people and they only part with it if you’re really, really nice to them.

And, yes, it can show rebirth, as well as transformation, regeneration, and healing—none of which generally are required unless you go through some sort of horror story in the first place.

So today,we’re talking about the 8th. I’m really well qualified to discuss it because my South Node is there. That means that I’ve spent many, many lives hanging out in that house and, hopefully, at age 68, have learned not to go there.

Humor alert:  some of you may not know me well, so be advised not to take everything I say in humor posts literally. When I’m in a devilish mood, I‘ve been known to exaggerate and even, occasionally, to make things up for a better story. I’m in one of those moods today.

 If I seem to focus on the darker side of the 8th today,  it’s to provide a balance to those terminally positive astrologers who avert their eyes from any of the more difficult life passages that the chart can portray.

 To them, the 2nd is never about money, only about values, and the 8th is never about death or debts, only about transformation. And then when one of the tougher expressions of a transit comes up, their clients are blindsided. (If you’re one of them, see Astrologers’ Hang-ups about Money—How they Hurt our Clients .)

 Questionable Questions about the 8th House

 Here are some questions about the 8th that clients and advice column readers may or may not have asked me over the years, with answers I may or may not have had the guts to give them.  

Who are the players in the 8th house?

Sexual partners. Gynecologists. People you share joint finances and resources with, like a mate or business partner.  Other sources of support like investors, trust fund executors, Social Security or grant providers. Your CPA or investment counselor.

Dead people who stay in touch. People who put you in the will…then threaten to disinherit you if you don’t do what they say. Family members or sugar daddies who dole out money to you, then make you pay, pay, pay.

Staff of institutions you owe money to, like banks, credit card companies, collection agencies, or the IRS. Insurance agents. (I don’t know about you, but I could do without most of these individuals!) 

I believe my about-to-be Ex is concealing assets so he won’t have to pay so much alimony.  Can astrology tell me if my suspicions are correct?

A horary question could give you a yes or no answer, but wouldn’t show such crucial details as how much money is involved and where it’s hidden.  For that, you wouldn’t want an astrologer, you’d want a private investigator.

 My brother-in-law has Neptune in the 8th natally, and he’s pushing me to invest a lotta bucks in what sounds like a sure-fire winner. My wife likes the idea, too. Should I do it?   

What’s his track record on sure-fire winners?  I’m guessing there’ve been quite a few “almosts,” and zip as far as winners. Check out his chart and your chart, but most of all, get advice on the investment from someone who knows the field well. Send away for his credit score. And be sure to get everything in writing and limit your liability for the business.     

I happen to be well off, and my fiancé has Mars conjunct Pluto in the 8th. Is he a gold digger, is he hot for my body, or does he love me for myself?

 With any luck, he loves you for yourself AND is hot for your body. Still, you’re advised to see an astrologer for a chart comparison and a lawyer for a prenup.

 I have Venus and Pluto conjunct, straddling the 7th -8th house cusps.  Could I marry a millionaire?

 I call that the First Lady aspect, as so many politicians wives either have Venus-Pluto or Mars-Pluto aspects or both: They’re also seen in the charts of other political wives like Maria Shriver and among the British Royals—Elizabeth II, Sarah, Duchess of York, and Sophie Rhys-Jones.  So, yeah, you might marry upscale. 

Be advised, however, that political husbands and the rich and powerful have very poor track record on fidelity, and part of staying married to them is closing your eyes to that.

Transiting Pluto just entered my 8th and will be there for 160 years.  Well, okay, 16. Will I ever get out of debt?  

How deep in debt are you, and how long did it take to get that far in?  You can manage it, absolutely, but it will doubtlessly require—as many Pluto transits do—a radical shift in your lifestyle and how you manage money.

And that radical shift, over the 16 years when Pluto is in the 8th will bring about a huge transformation in your orientation toward the material plane. Pluto is in Capricorn now, and if you have Capricorn on that house, you’ve probably got champagne tastes on a beer income and decided years ago that going into debt was the way to live large.

 I have natal Pluto in Libra in the 8th with transiting Saturn crossing it.  How long do I have

No ethical western astrologer predicts death, but at your age (circa first Saturn Return), I’d be looking at other 8th house issues very closely. Have you been irresponsible about your sex life, debts, your income tax, or taking money from family rather than being self-sustaining? If so, it’s time to clean up your act before Saturn cleans your clock.  

 Can I cheat on my income tax and get away with it?

Whatever planets you have in the 8th natally, you also need to look to transits and progressions for the span of your working life. The answer is probably not, not over the long haul, as Saturn eventually transits the 8th for all of us, and the I.R.S. doesn’t play.

And even if you do, since the 8th is also the house of Social Security, pensions, and other entitlements, when the time comes to retire, you’ll have less of an income base. (See Living Off the Books—an 8th House Quicksand .)

Jupiter in Aries is traveling through my 8th.  I’m applying for a grant to establish a program for preschool boys to prepare them for the military.  How are my chances?  

 What an appalling thought! Since you asked, the potentials of Jupiter transiting the 8th include a grant, scholarship, legal settlement, or advance on royalties. I’d wish you well, but I don’t. 

My baby boy has a stellium of planets in the 8th.  Will he grow up to be a sex maniac? 

None of your business. No child’s 8th house and future sex life is his mother’s business.  Concentrate on imparting a healthy attitude toward sexuality and a great respect for women. That’s the best you can do. 

I see dead people. What’s up with that?

The 8th house is a haunted house.  Like it or not, you’re a medium, or as they’re calling it now, a ghost whisperer. 

Astrologically, the charts of people with mediumship abilities most often have Pluto or the 8th house or both strong in their charts.

The ability usually opens up when someone important to you dies and provides an anchor on the other side. There’s no opt out button for that, so you need to educate yourself on how to shield and protect yourself as well as how to use this ability.  Look for books on the internet about mediumship and for spiritualist churches in your area.  Watching   Jennifer Love Hewitt on Ghost Whisperer and Patricia Arquette  on Medium does NOT count as training.

Readers, is it just me, or is there a decided sleaze factor to these 8th house questions?  A better title for this piece would have been. “Everything you’ve wanted to ask your astrologer about the 8th house but were too embarassed.”

Okay, I confess,  nobody really ever asked me questions quite like these. But I’ll bet they thought them all the same.  Here are the real questions Readers asked when we had an open Q&A session about this house: Readers Ask: Q&A about the 8th House.

Articles for Astrologers:

 Articles about the 8th House:

The Complete Miniseries on the 12th house:

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