Posted by: Donna Cunningham | October 11, 2010

How Does your First House Give the Wrong Impression?

©10-11-2010 by Donna Cunningham, MSW

One of the themes discussed in yesterday’s Q&A session was that the Ascendant and planets in the 1st can give a misleading picture of who we are. It’s our default setting in social situations—a kind of façade that may mask insecurities, politically or socially incorrect attitudes, or even a tender side we don’t trust the outside world to respect. 

It’s the part of  ourselves we’re most comfortable showing to people who don’t know us well, but it may or may not represent us as we really are. So, the question I’d like us all to consider today is what we can learn about our social masks and what they hide by analyzing our Rising sign and the planets in our 1st house. 

The 12th House–the Rising Sign’s Hidden Motives

One revealing part of the process would be to look at the relationship between your 1st house and your 12th.  The 1st is what you readily show the world, while the 12th house is your secrets—even the secrets you keep from yourself.

In the natural zodiac, the sign on the 12th is the one that comes before the sign on the 1st.  My early mentor, Rod Chase, used that relationship to discover secrets and the hidden motives of each of the 12 signs. 

For instance, Leo rising puts Cancer on the 12th.  Behind the Lion’s roar may be a shy, yet crusty Crab, with pinchers to defend itself if you pry too much.  

Virgo’s 12th is Leo, and behind that trademark modesty can lurk a surprising amount of ego.  (Gift  suggestion:  a t-shirt that says, “I may not be perfect, but I’m miles ahead of the rest of you!”)

Behind Libra’s sweetly agreeable facade can be a surprisingly hypercritical Virgo side.  Behind Scorpio’s control freak demands can be a Libran yearning for unconditional love. 

Do you wish I’d do all 12 Rising signs?   I won’t because I don’t do cookbook interpretations of all 12 whatevers.  But I’ve given enough examples that you should be able to compare your 1st and 12 houses yourself.   Done in more detail, this technique for looking at the 12 signs is a very fruitful inquiry into the hidden motives of the Rising signs, so I invite you to pursue it at your leisure.

Other Things the Ascendant Hides

Today, however, let’s examine the broad spectrum of ways we keep the world from getting too close—the variety of defense mechanisms the Ascendant and any planets in the 1st employ to hide our more vulnerable yet more authentic qualities. 

Not limited to the 12th house’s secrets, the 1st house may also be protecting our Sun’s sign and aspects, the true center of our being and the source of our self-esteem or lack thereof. 

That’s part of the difference between a person with the Ascendant in a sign versus a person with the Sun in that sign. The person with Aquarius Rising, for instance, rebels or does or says shocking things, but they do it for show or as a way of coping with social interactions. The person with an Aquarius Sun almost HAS to rebel/shock/be unconventional, as it’s part of their identity and they’d feel like they were losing themselves if they complied.

The Ascendant may also may keep our Moon’s sign and aspects  private, with its emotions, insecurities, and long-term effects of family dynamics.

There are any number of major chart factors it can conceal–like an off-the-charts Pluto score, a major configuration like a t-square, or a stellium in a particular house.  A casual acquaintance or co-worker may not have a clue to the Real You.  (It’s less likely to be able to hide these things if the chart feature in question actually forms an aspect to the Ascendant. )

Me, I confess that my Leo stellium in the 1st covering up my 12th house Cancer Sun definitely qualifies me as the Lion’s roar that covers up the crusty crab.  But, as one of my student used to say, “When the crab grabs, watch out!”

 So I invite you to think about how your Ascendant and 1st house planets may represent an automatic, knee-jerk response that protects you from the outside world and yet may not allow your true self and your real desires full expression.  Share your insights in the comment section.  No Bull!

For more details about the 1st house and all its complexities, see: Readers Ask: Q&A about the 1st House and Ascendant

The Complete Miniseries on the 12th house:

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Art Credits:  Giving a come-as-your-sign party this Halloween?   I found all of these masks and many more under Google images, where they can be found on commercial websites.


  1. I have problems with my Gemini AC interferes with relationships and career; specially with Venus, Mercury, Ceres and juno conjuncting my AC. I think because it’s squaring a Jupiter and Chiron conjunction in my MC. My Taurus 12th house does not show itself easily and is misrepresented by the Gemini AC. Pluto from the IC area might be affecting the AC with a not as tight square. Maybe we come to do things the hard way. We also get help here and there with assets and guidance if we need it. We have Donna posts and readings as an example of help we receive!

    • It’s a complicated picture, but don’t write off the strong Pluto in the Gauquelin sector square the Ascendant. I’ve seen even semisquares from Pluto to the Ascendant have many of the same dynamics as Pluto on the Ascendant, just not as strong. Donna

  2. I think my Gemini AC must give off the wrong vibe of who I truly am because when people find out they are usually either surprised and/or turned off. I don’t have any planets in my Taurus 12th house. However, my Aqu moon in the 10th (conj. saturn) squares it and my Scorpio sun opposes my AC (in the 6th house on the cusp of the 7th). A stellium of planets in the 7th (mercury, venus, mars) in Sag oppose my AC. I also have pluto conj uranus in the 4th or 5th depending on the house system used.

    An astrologer told me once that having my sun opposing my AC meant that I would always be at war with myself, or who I am versus who I appear to be would never match. I must be sending off some kind of message I’m not aware of because I can’t seem to get a job in my field. People SEEM to like me but then when it comes down to it, I don’t get the job. Its completely bewildering.

    So Donna, I’m very curious about your two statements:

    “Not limited to the 12th house’s secrets, the 1st house may also be protecting our Sun’s sign and aspects, the true center of our being and the source of our self-esteem or lack thereof. It may keep our Moon’s sign and aspects private, with its emotions, insecurities, and long-term effects of family dynamics.”

    Because right now my self esteem is in the toilet. I’m wondering will if it always be this way, or tend to go in this direction, no matter how hard I work on it due to my sun opposing the AC (and also not having many other aspects in my chart).

    • Dear Marie-Francoise, no, by no means are you doomed to low self-esteem forever. It can get better through healing work and stopping any negative self-talk.

      There are numbers of flower essences that help ( Do you have an inner bully that is always running you down? I stopped mine by speaking very sharply to it, as many times as needed, usually giving myself a sharp tap on the 3rd eye as I did so. When you stand up to a bully–even when it’s part of yourself–they stop.

      One interpretation of Sun opposite Ascendant would be that you seek to find self-worth through the evaluations others place on you. The trouble with that is that even if you get their vote of confidence/praise etc, it doesn’t work!! Or it works only momentarily, then the self-doubt/self-hate takes over again. The self-love really has to start with yourself, and that’s where healing work becomes a godsend. Donna

      • hi donna! i read your article on flower essences for self-esteem and it was wonderful! spot on and full of great information… i just have to figure out which one (or ones) to take. right now, i can’t afford to buy each essence singly. it’s funny, but even though i live in a big city (LA) there are hardly any places that sell essences and none where you can buy bottles combining more than one essence (where you can choose which essences you want and they make it for you and you just buy the one bottle). there was a place in minneapolis that does it but they don’t have a mail service. so, i’ll just start with one and go from there.

        thank you donna, again, for your support and wisdom. many blessings to you and yours!


      • “One interpretation of Sun opposite Ascendant would be that you seek to find self-worth through the evaluations others place on you”

        Oh I forgot to mention that lately, especially in the last five years, this is EXACTLY what i have been doing! your statement was more than insightful. of course, i have been seeking approval outside myself to one degree or another my whole life, and a huge dump of childhood trauma thrown in didn’t help. but now that i am more conscious of it, i am going to work harder to somehow correct that tendency. focusing on self love again would be a great place to start.

  3. I laughed out loud when I read the birthday gift suggestion for virgo rising, leo 12th…”I may not be perfect, but I’m miles ahead of the rest of you!”

    I may have to buy that for me when my birthday roles around at the end of this month. Of course, the shirt will have to be red (mars in the 1st) and pretty (venus in the 1st) 🙂

  4. This is a really interesting idea…. It makes a lot of sense!!!! I’m wondering if an interception of the sign in the 12th would have any effect on this idea? I’ve read that an interception can inhibit the energies of that sign from manifesting in one’s life.
    An interception would also mean that there are 2 signs in the 12th (and that the sign on the cusp would actually be 2 signs before the ASC) so I wonder how that would color the interpretation….

  5. oh…and in response to “the 1st house may also be protecting our Sun’s sign and aspects”. Without knowing the astrology behind it, this is what I’ve known about myself for years. Anything I started a new job or joined a new group, I always tend to be quiet and watchful. Then usually after 30 days or so, when I’ve figured out who’s who in my new environment, then, and only then, do I let some of my true self (scorpio sun) peek out. Often times I’ve had people tell me “you’re not the same person who started working here 3/6/9 months ago.”

    Now I understand why I do this. Thanks for the insight.

  6. I have the opposite problem. With the moon in the first house, every emotion or reaction I have passes across my face. Seeing as both are in Virgo, that’s a whole lot of nose crinkling.

    • Priceless! These comments are just priceless! Readers, you are an insightful crew!

      Yes, Charlotte, of course, with the Moon in the 1st, you’d wear your emotions on your sleeve. It’s sort of a painful placement, for those with tender, sensitive Moons. But it also gives you quite a lot of empathy for what others are going through–like a quadruple Cancer. Donna

    • Hi Charlotte – that’s my name too. I too by Solar Return have sun and moon in tauras in the 1st house. Thanks for enlightening me. I am a 12th house tauras with gemini rising and Uranus on the cusp normally. Thanksgiving Day I let my emotions out for a day and a 1/2. It’s on the 29th degree too. uhm and my son is a tauras as well. So was my deceased dad. What might the lesson be. I wonder.

      Donna I remember the long way back you stretch. Just picking up the thread again recently.

  7. I have an empty 1st and 12th house and they’re both in Gemini,but my 1st house seems to be mostly Cancer,at least in Koch they are. In Equal house my 1st is in Gemini and my 12th is in Taurus. I’m not sure what kind of impression I give people. I think I give the impression that I’m naive/stupid to some people, sometimes people see me as a nice person,other people see me as down to earth, while other people at first seem to think I’m stuck up or mean, I’ m not sure,and I’m not sure where any of those impressions come from and why I’m percieved differently by so many different people. Then when I behave differently than they expected they’re genuinely surprised. I don’t know what causes that.


  8. I was all ready to respond but at the end you said “No Bull!” I have a Taurus ascendant (with intercepted Aries in the 12th) so you rendered me speechless.
    I have always appreciated and identified the story of Ferdinand the bull who instead of doing what all bulls do (fight in bull fights) he preferred to sit under the cork tree smelling the flowers… I find smelling the flowers and escaping the normal pace of life important. Figuring out what the heck that intercepted Aries does in my life is like looking in a couple of mirrors to see that spot on the back of my neck!

    • Mimi, I have the same as you and feel the same as you especially re smelling the flowers. Have to read that story! On top I have a stellium with sun, moon, venus conjunct and mercury in that aries bit as well, nothing though in the first house.
      I am so looking forward to all of Donna’s responses and ideas….

    • I have loved Ferdinand since I was a wee child! It is on the list of books I give to all the children in my life.

      (It also reminds me a good deal of my Libra Sun/Tauran Moon hubby; )

  9. My loaded 1st house (leo rising w/ venus, uraunus, mars conjunct) has confused people all my life as I have a 12h cancer sun/mercury & a 4h scorpio moon/neptune (which squares all 1st house stuff). People think I am much more confident, aggressive, outgoing and in command than i am, really a very shy, sensitive, cautious person. Then their expectations of me are ‘adjusted’, usually downward, as they come to know me. It has caused me no end of complications in my life…

    I think i am more insecure because of this ‘duality’ and haven’t learned how to integrate is gracefully as of yet. I have developed a deep empathy and compassion for people which i try to demonstrate… perhaps this is the gift i give…

    • I hear you, Paloma. With Pluto in Leo in the First, I come on like gangbusters, very authoritative and invincible, to protect that sensitive Cancer in the 12th Sun. People tend to be “wowed” at first…I can see it in their eyes. But later, when the show is over, I return to human sized and I can see the pedastal slipping away from under my feet.

      • i love it “when i return to human sized…” Yes, and depending on the person, what happens then is very revealing. Lots of ‘lost’ friendship, people who continue to go on looking for what it was they think we are at first blush (and can be! but not all the time) or they become really good friends, intrigued by the complicated layers. this is what i’ve found for myself. i sit back now and watch and try not to invest my heart too quickly anymore… :>

  10. I am a libra rising with neptune (in libra) in the 1st.
    I think Neptune in the 1st can really give the wrong impression for almost any sun sign. Or sometimes no impression, since it’s so reflexive.
    And do you think that neptune in the first might make a person’s 12th house secrets more obvious to others and more immediate to themselves?

    • Yes to all your interpretations–there can be so much denial with Neptune in the 1st. Donna

      • Denial of self? Or in denial? Probably both.
        Thanks for the feedback… R

  11. I have Scorp rising (1st house), also moon… but I did smile when I read Libra in the 12th… that is so me….. trying to find balance within my own moods to do the right thing… then scorp moon gets me – adds sting in the tail…

  12. As a Gemini rising with Saturn in the 1st (11 degrees away from my ASC, and in Cancer), I tend to carefully guard my expression. I’ve heard more than one cohort say they were often unsure how to read me.

    With Taurus ruling my 12th, I also don’t talk about my Venusian pursuits. I always attributed it to the world of work, that is, making sure I’m composed and don’t allow my “personal life” to get in the way of my career.

    In all, I found I do these things for my professional and personal protection.

  13. I was shocked recently to learn that a friend’s first impression of me was that I was an angry person. I have Mars in the first House, but not conjunct the ASC. . .

    • Ah, sigh, me too, Mary, with Mars and a few other goodies strung out near my Ascendant. I am slow to anger, but, man oh man, when I do get mad and speak sharply to someone, they are DEVASTATED! Donna

  14. Honestly, I haven’t found that people get “the wrong impression” of me when meeting me in real life.

    I come across very much as I truly am. I have been told that all my life. What disappoints on occasion is that people expect more of me than I possess thinking surely there’s more to her than this!

    Nope. I’m all me. 🙂

    If I had to analyze why all that is so, I’d have to guess it’s because I’m Taurus Asc and my chart is Earth- and Fixed-heavy. I am very much as I appear. You can count on it. LOL

    In cyberspace is where problems arise. Nobody has me directly in front of them in cyberspace so imaginations run wild. I scold somebody for Christian-bashing and suddenly I’m a right-wing fundamentalist. Wrong. I agree with someone on a social or environmental issue and suddenly I’m a left-wing liberal. Wrong.

    But, see me in person and suddenly I all make sense.

    I’m a Taurus Asc in an Earthy, Fixed chart.

    I just got a mental picture of a Pisces Asc in an Airy, Mutable chart. o~0

    • How ’bout an airy, cardinal chart? I’m about your opposite with a Pisces asc and 5 planets in Libra, Cancer moon. I sure haven’t fused the various parts of me yet! People get various impressions of me but they are usually the wrong one.

      Actually, what I was going to note is that my other strong aspects (Stellium in Libra square Moon, Chiron-Mars-Uranus T-square, Venus-MC-Neptune conjunction) totally seem to override my ascendant. One would imagine a woman with Pisces ascendant/Libra Sun to be quite easy-going, pleasant, feminine, maybe a little flaky, but the impression I seem to give off is pure Holy Cow 8th house sun conjunct pluto and saturn especially (jup/merc don’t seem to be as influencing though they are right there too), with a side of not dressing/looking/acting “girly” enough. Not sure if it’s because I have 4 planets right there in the 7th. A couple of them make a sesquisquare aspect to the ascendant, though it’s a minor aspect for sure. My 1st is empty as well as the 12th house in Aquarius.

  15. i laughed at the virgo rising, 12th leo t-shirt idea, too! i’d wear it. 😛

    i’m a double virgo and for years and years, i’ve gone along with “you are really who you are” – there is no mask. but i think you’re on to something here, donna, with the 12th house secrets. i’ve got my venus retrograde in leo there and i have surprised a lot of the men in my relationships (as well as myself) with just how passionate i can be! BUT i spent far longer than most people my age being terribly afraid of sex and intimacy (probably connected to earlier trauma with a relative). then once i went there, all hell broke loose and it’s been nothing but fun!

    as for the mask/true self…i just don’t know. the ascendant/sun are my only earth elements (besides south node in taurus) in my chart. i’ve got an aquarius moon (and a predominantly air chart) which can sometimes have me come off as aloof and cold.

    i remember in my teens, all my friends would tell me when they first met me they thought i was a bitch! but after they got to know me, they saw how funny and clever i was. these days, i’ve toned down the funny AND the bitch. i sometimes wonder if that’s a result of my progressed sun going through libra and hitting new aspects in my natal chart.

    • You know, Erin, I always say I don’t follow progressions, but the truth is, those shifting of signs, especially the Sun or Ascendant, do bring in new behaviors. I thank God most everyday that my Mercury has progressed into Libra and I’ve finally learned some diplomacy and tact. Donna

  16. I have Sag rising and Sag on the 12th with three planets — Neptune, Mercury, and Mars — in the 12th. I present a friendly face to people, but with Mercury and Neptune in the 12th I hold back and observe before speaking. I intuit a lot and am starting to realize that my Mercury/Mars/Neptune conjunction gets frustrated when it can’t communicate telepathically.

    My chart ruler, Jupiter, is in the 8th house and echos my Scorpio Sun. Basically I’m a nice, empathic person, but there are many hidden layers that even I am starting to discover.

  17. I’ve got a Scorpio Asc, and the 12th house cusp is at 1′ Scorpio (It’s one of those Northern births) and Neptune (in 12th) in a wide conj to the Asc. I come across as capable and charming, but guarded and secretive. I take a long time to warm up to someone, and they might be slightly surprised when I do (it takes me about a month to be spontanous). I hide my emotions very well. As a child I was oversensitive – way too much Virgo and Pisces, so perhaps it’s a protective devise from way back. I feel Scorpio/Virgo is very similar in many ways, it’s all about protecting a soft core either by being distant and introvert, or sarcastic and charming. I’ve never met anyone who could guess my Asc or Sun – astrological people, that is. Usually they think Sag – I have a very strong Jupiter. Another protective device, perhaps. I think of my Scorpio Asc as a bodyguard, protecting me until I find my footing so to speak.
    Of course, with Neptune in the 12th I might be fooling myself and everyone sees how weird I really am. Although, with all the Plutonians in my life, I think someone would have said something by now…

    • With that combination, who you are is anything but obvious, especially to the clueless Average Joe or Jill. Maybe you’re just meant to be one of those alluring Women of Mystery. Donna

      • Lol. Alluring woman of mystery – way better than just plain weird!

    • Hi Natalie:

      I also have Scorpio Rising with Scorpio on the 12th house cusp. I definitely relate to what you said about being distant, introverted, charming, and sarcastic. I’ve got a Sag Moon/Uranus conjunction in the 1st which I’ve learned to use to “protect” the sensitivity of my Venus in Pisces.

      I usually come across as flirtatious (sometimes hypersexual), friendly, open, and genuine. Once people start getting to know me, they start seeing that I’m quite secretive, especially about my sensitivity.

      When I was younger, I think my distrust of people was much more obvious, and in many ways provoked them to prove me right. So I’ve learned to appear much more light-hearted – a defensive friendliness, if you will.

      I have an Aries Sun, and I often related much more to the sign of Scorpio when I was younger which was why I was so skeptical of astrology when I only knew about sun signs. My mother would often point out my Aries traits, but I thought she was not seeing me for who I was.

      You seem very self-aware. Do you feel you’ve consciously constructed the persona people see at first glance? I know I did – learning to mimic many gestures, intonations, styles of clothing, etc.

      Also, how do you see Scorpio playing out both on your 12th and 1st? Sometimes I think it gives me this sense that all my thoughts are on display which is why I often felt that I worked so hard to have a sense of privacy. I’m quite often surprised that people are often fully convinced by the impression I intend to give off.

      thanks for sharing,


  18. This certainly rings true for me. I have Libra rising (plus the Sun and Venus in my 7th House), and I do come across to people as understanding, patient, giving, tolerant, thoughtful of others, etc. etc. It isn’t that this is not at all who I am, because part of who I am is the way I behave to others. But lots of times, I am being extremely critical of other people in my head, even though I would never say anything about it. I really would like to be less critical, because I find it annoying, even if no one else knows about it. But I am also working on being less of a soft touch whenever somebody wants something from me, because I really do need to pursue my own fulfillment, not just take care of everybody else!

  19. I have Jupiter conjunct Pluto on the Cancer Asc with no planets in the Gemini 12 (no air in chart)
    This Pluto/Jupiter placement squares Aries Sun Uranus, opposes Saturn, semisquares Neptune, trines Venus, and biquintiles Sag moon.
    Leo Mars in first house squares mercury and neptune trines mercury.

    What people must see is way too much!

    That mercury/no air suggests that I have problems expressing myself without all this heavy outer planet influence showing, Since kindergarden I have had problems with girls and women ( not boys) who find me too this and too that. “she thinks she’s so smart..she gives me a pain”etc.)
    Age and that wonderful rescuing Jupiter have modified this but it is still operating. I must always be aware of coming across pluto/jupiter!

  20. My Gemini ascendant is conjunct Venus and Saturn in 1st, and Uranus in 12th. I can come across as being clever and quirky. Also I can put on Venusian charm and Saturn soberness, relate to both young and old people. I suppose that I talk my way out of uncomfortable moments. I can be airy and light, but that covers up my Taurus 12th which has Sun and Mercury in Taurus in it. I do not have a strong sense of who “I” am, with a watery 12th house influenced Sun. The talkative Gemini exterior covers up a sometimes confused (12th house) sense of myself (Sun) and thoughts (Mercury). I have to be by myself, retreat from the world, to figure things out. It makes it interesting (maybe hard) for people to get to know me, as I am not as social as I first appear!

  21. Donna, you pose such interesting questions. That’s why I keep returning to your blog, to learn.
    I have always known that my first impression fools people. I come across as serious, focused and capable. Sometime later, my cheery impish people pleasing side comes out and everyone is surprised at how laid back and funny I am.
    And it is a relief when I allow myself to “emerge”. However, I draw on my strong side when it suits me. My Sun, Asc, Mercury and Neptune are in Scorpio 1st house, my Venus and Jupiter snuggly conjunct in my Libran 12th house.
    At times I do tire of the two extremes of my personality being in an uneasy alliance. However, as I get older the chasm between them narrows.

  22. Donna, you pose such interesting questions. That’s why I keep returning to your blog, to learn.
    I have always known that my first impression fools people. I come across as serious, focused and capable. Sometime later, my cheery impish people pleasing side comes out and everyone is surprised at how laid back and funny I am.
    And it is a relief when I allow myself to “emerge”. However, I draw on my strong side when it suits me. My Sun, Asc, Mercury and Neptune are in Scorpio 1st house, my Venus and Jupiter snuggly conjunct in my Libran 12th house.
    At times I do tire of the two extremes of my personality being in an uneasy alliance. However, as I get older the chasm between them narrows.

  23. Yeah, lots of complications here. Leo Ascendant conjunct Moon with Uranus just inside the 12th. Not only is Cancer on the 12th insecure, but the ruler of the Ascendant/Moon is my Sun in Virgo square Saturn. Very different from the fun and wacky Leo Uranus/Ascendant/Moon (14/17/18) combo! Plus I have Mercury and Venus/Pluto in the 1st house at 0 and 2 Virgo. Hard to be shy with all that energy attracting unwanted attention and feeling very misunderstood. I always wished I could be one of those people who seemed comfortable in their own skin. Well, it has generally gotten better with age!

  24. I think you can most mislead people of who you are when Neptun sits in the first house,not just on Ascendant,but in the first house.You put some clouds between you and the outside world.This,i think, can happen on purpose,adding fog and misleading people of who you are,giving a wrong impression,or by mistake.Either way,people have a different idea about you,about real you.

  25. I have a Cancer asc and my 12th house is Gemini. I suspect I give off a quiet, gentle exterior and people can be surprised I have a brain underneath and *gasp* like to use it.

    • I have a daughter with that combo and that’s how she comes across. It wasn’t until she was tested for a learning disability in 5th grade that they discovered she had an IQ of 147 and no disabilities – the school had treated her like she was stupid so in her gentleness, she obliged!

      Anyway, she’s in graduate school right now ready to metaphorically set the Library Sciences world on intellectual fire. 🙂

      • OH, thank God for that test!!! Imagine if she’d never taken it? Yesterday in the Q&A, someone asked that if the 1st was just a facade and not the real you, why was it important. Your daughter’s story perfectly illustrates why an Ascendant that gives off a false impression is something that needs to be addressed. And astrology is one blessed way to see the truth behind the false face. Donna

    • I relate Jan the Alan Fan:

      I have a Cancer rising, Sun in Gemini (12th), and Venus in Cancer (12th) conj Asc., and people perceive me as quiet, warm, easy going, caring, a good listener, and gullible. They are surprised when they discover that I am an eternal student, book worm, writer, poet, art lover, and virtually a walking encyclopedia.

      If the US held chariot races, I would participate; classic movies, metaphysics, UFOs, Bollywood, archery, tai chi, krav maga, military service, etc. Get the picture!!!!!!

      I recently completed a children’s writing program, and will enter University in the Spring 2011 to study Library Science. I would love to wake up every morning in a library or museum.

      The rising sign definitely gives the wrong impression.

  26. Hi, Donna!
    I think you are right. I have Pisces and Aries intercepted in 12th and I hide my emotions and anger with my Taurus rising.
    What I don’t understand is this: is this a good thing? hiding these sides? they have been placed there exactly so that I could hide them or should I make efforts to somehow bring them to light in a good way?
    I also have my NN in 1st house and I read about this in one of your answers to the Q&A session on the 1st house. Although, I read several times that this nodal axis is easy, I always felt that the purpose of a NN in 1st house is to create a lie, especially when there is nothing else there either.

    • Oh, good question. Certainly I’d agree that certain placements are given to us for a purpose–but some others are just there as a side effect of other placements. So some times a 1st house planet/sign is there for a reason–because you’ll need it to do your work in the world–and then the 12th house sign is an inevitable result of the architecture of the zodiac.

      IF the 12th house placement is not really a problem, then no biggie. BUT if the thing that is hidden starts to cause problems (self-defeating patterns due to suppressed emotions, parts of yourself, or addictions, for instance), then we need to work on bringing it to our conscious awareness. Donna

  27. Hi its a very intesting post indeed!!

    my asc is Aqua and 12th house is Capri.

    What does it mean?

    Does it mean=I appear detached and unonventional ,but actually I am very conventional/traditional , meterialistic and ambitious ????

    please comment .


    • True for some–the Aquarius rising likes to do and say shocking things, but may or may not be all that wild, depending on what their Uranus is like. It’s more of a knee-jerk rebellion, like Lostshoe with the Uranus in the 1st.

      You see, that’s part of the difference between a person with the Ascendant in a sign versus the person with the Sun in that sign. The person with Aquarius Rising does it for show or as a way of coping with social interactions. The person with an Aquarius Sun almost HAS to rebel/shock/be unconventional, as it’s part of their identity and they’d feel like they were losing themselves if they complied.

      Hmm. I think I have to add this to the post, as it’s an important point. Good question, ananya. Donna

      • That makes a lot of sense to me! I have uranus conjunct (with couple other planets) my leo asc and maybe idealistic and a bit eccentric but am not a ‘rebel without a cause’ that i have read i’m supposed to be! not with a cancer 12h sun! thanks for all these great articles!

  28. oh, this question has an easy answer: My Uranus in the first house is one of the banes of my existance ( the other is Neptune in the 2nd).

    I HATE and DESPISE it when anyone tells me what to do.

    ‘Do this, do that, arrange your day *this* way because I’m your superior and I tell you so’ is guaranteed to bring hell on your head.

    • I’m that way myself, lostshoe–lots of Uranus! In fact, the best way to get me to do something is to tell me NOT to. Donna

  29. Very interesting! My Libra ascendant (no planets) gives me a Virgo twelfth house with Jupiter there. So, I am seen as very easygoing and tolerant, but that Virgo 12th makes me picky, picky, picky. People don’t know how much I take apart their manners and behavior and criticize them (to myself, of course).

    However, I can be very nice in how my criticism comes out. I always try to make it constructive and helpful (Jupiter). If they only knew what I was thinking, they’d probably hate me! Glad I have that Jupiter filter.

    • “that Virgo 12th makes me picky, picky, picky. People don’t know how much I take apart their manners and behavior and criticize them”

      Same here!

      Except I never realized this until now – that it is my virgo 12H that is making me such a critical person.

      The take-away for me is to be more mindful of this tendency, although it tends to not be obvious to me since it is supposed to be hidden in the 12th.

      Thanks Donna for this insightful lesson!

  30. Jesus Donna, your comment on Virgos…BOL
    (blushing out loud that is)
    I’d be so interested in reading a post of yours on the rationnel that lies beneath each sign’s most obvious manifestations. I am not so sure you’d be particularly interested in writting it though!..

    • Well, I could do that, but won’t. I’ve given enough examples that the rest of the signs should be able to put it together for themselves. (I don’t do windows AND I don’t do cookbook interpretations of the 12 signs/houses/whatever.) Donna

      • Since we’re discussing appearances, I have a question, and if there’s an astrological answer to this, I’LL do your windows. What sign/planet/aspect would you ascribe to a husky,raspy voice?

      • LOL! It’s a good thing for you that I don’t have an answer, because I live on the 8th floor and have picture windows! If I had to guess, though, I might say Mars. Or could it be mercury-Saturn? Donna

      • For a husky raspy voice, I’d look for Taurus influences in the chart since Taurus rules the throat. But after watching a Dr. Oz show recently that indicated the incidence of thyroid cancer is growing among women at an alarming rate since 1990, if the husky, raspy voice is a relatively new occurrence and wasn’t always like that, then get yourself to a Dr. to be checked out.

      • Actually, Karen, I’m a Taurus moon! (yet not a taurus moon person, since moon opp. my pluto-mars conjunction). Anyway, what I was trying-and obviously failed to describe was a non-girly, rather deep tone of voice, like, say, Laureen Bacall’s voice, or, more so, Lindsay Lohan’s voice. (I should go check their charts for Taurus influences!)
        So, thanks so much for taking the time, and, Donna, thanks for giving it a shot! As for that cancer diagnosis, I think I’ll just pass, at least for the time being (joke)

  31. I know a man with Venus (and Uranus) in his first house in Leo. (Leo is mostly in his 12th house as well, and a little cancer) He is Smarmy, his sense of humor is offputting (heh, not just to me). is that typical of this placement of venus?

    What do you say about Venus in the 1st house?

    This particular chart illustrates one of my bigger confusions about houses, this guy has two signs in his 12th house and 2 signs in his 1st. does the second sign in a house count too?

  32. My 12th house has been the most difficult part of my chart for me to interpret.

    Does it have an Aquarian cusp (at 29 degrees) with Pisces intercepted as in the Placidus system or a Pisces cusp as in Koch?

    I decided to go with Koch, adding just a whiff of Aquarius to the Pisces.

    With my Aries NN half a degree above the horizon, should it be interpreted as affecting only the 12th house or the 1st as well?

    I decided it really acted as a bridge between the houses. Given the nature of the Pisces/Aries relationship, I figured this is a way for them to connect.

    At least my Chiron is Aries stays put in the middle of the 12th house, not that this is the easiest placement to understand either. There is definitely something paradoxical about my Chiron that I have become aware of over the years.

    I do dearly love my Aries Ascendant. Having a champion up front to assert my rights and make it clear that I will not be patronized has proven itself to be invaluable in my life.

    I know that Saturn in the First House Saturn is often interpreted rather negatively, to put it mildly. However, I find that my Saturn (along with conjoined Vesta) provides a certain gravitas when I need it most: when I must march into battle. It also helps me keep a cool head and stay focused on the matter at hand.

    • To have Aries Rising and then the node in Aries closely conjunct the Ascendant would be a strongly Martian presence, even if it’s in the 12th.

      I guess the nodal message would be to stand up for yourself when needed, and it sounds like you’ve got that pretty well nailed down…but in the 12th, maybe it’s a bit overdone sometimes. Perhaps in the 12th, the whole picture is that you can also, once assertiveness is balanced and comfortable, be a strong advocate for those who are downtrodden. Donna

  33. hm, actually his Venus (and Uranus) are very well aspected, sextile Mars and Mercury, quintile Neptune.. He also has Pluto in that first house in Virgo (he’s a virgo sun in 2nd house) and I really thought that Pluto placed here would produce a thoughtful kind of person who you would take seriously – so I didn’t mention it.

    What i do know is that he is the last of 8 kids and always acts like he’s still that cute little boy (which is what is so offputting when someone is almost 50 years old).

  34. oops, ascendant looks good too except for 150 degrees from Saturn.

  35. Interesting how many gemini asc with tau in the 12th responded to this. I have sag on the asc with mars in the first and neptune in the 12th. I’ve had to learn to curb sharp and sarcastic comments. As a child I really let my neptune show I think. My mother called it “having my head in the clouds” and I loved to mimic people. Very comfortable for me to go to that place, even now. Then my sag became stronger and I found myself being very social when initially meeting people,but it quickly fades into quiet and I become a listener and observer. I find when I meet other fiery type people they don’t warm to me initially, they do after my fire dies down and the taurus takes over.

  36. Like “Kathie”, I have the galloping centaur as my ascendant and Sag also on the 12th house.
    She said she has Neptune/Mars/Mercury in the 12th, and she tends to “hold back and reserve before speaking”. (Must be mostly her secretive Scorpio Sun, cuz I can’t imagine sag secrets being covered by a sag mask).
    I have only Mars in my Saggy 12th House (but no Neptune). Unlike Katie, my telepathic nature is none existent, but I get lots of intuitive flashes. Does that 12th house Neptune make such a difference? Anyone answer this, please.
    With this free-spirited mask I reveal everything instantly. No 12TH house secrets! In most of my jobs, I end up doing alot of the work… everyone else runs with the ideas I so freely gave away, as they take credit and most of the money. This pisses off my Capricorn Sun in the first house. I grumble but hey, it has made my life interesting, and never dull.

    • William, how is your temper? I have noticed that people with mars in the 12th tend to blow up rather unpredictably.. ?

    • Yeah, my Sag ascendant gives a lot away, much to the chagrin of my Scorpio Sun. I personally am really in tune with with the intuitive nature of Neptune because it’s conjunct two personal planets.

      Mars in my 12th doesn’t make me blow up unpredictably, but I have a bad habit of burying my anger so that it vents via the physical body through illness. It’s something that I’ve been getting better with over the years. Neptune on the Ascendent makes you really sensitive to other people’s feelings, so there’s a habit to not make others angry because you feel their feelings.

  37. I have a rather conflicted 1st house. I have Capricorn rising. Aquarius Moon 1st house opposite 7th Leo Saturn, both square 10th Uranus. Uranus is sextile Asc and Pluto is square Asc from the 9th house. On the 12th house cusp I have Neptune in Sag (Pisces Sun).

    I never cease to either amaze, shock, or offend others. As I am usually perceived as a shy and nervous to others (the Capricorn 1st, Saturn 7th). I’m the type a bully would assume is safe to pick on. I’m quiet and well-mannered on first impression. Though with Uranus up at the top square Aquarius Moon, and Pluto square the Asc, it doesn’t take to long before the ‘real’ me comes at. The real me is more like a rebel activist whose secret motto is “f*** the system” yet I am very much apart of it. It’s a rather difficult position to take, but the other side of it is that I’m usually seen as very interesting and unusual in an inspiring and influencial way once I let down the guard intially put up. One thing is for people struggle to figure me out and if anything the words that they would most likely use to describe me would “unpredictable yet responsible”

  38. The insights of the bloggers here are incredible, and they have given examples on how aspects to a planet in the 12th directs their “creative drives”. So, I will add mine and also answer Mimi’s question.
    With Mars (the adrenalin injector) in Sag, you would expect unpredictable anger bursts. I do get very excited and animated, and most of my anger bursts dissipate as quickly as they appear.
    However, my Mars tightly opposes Saturn and trines Pluto in Leo, so I tend to simmer and pout for some time before getting REALLY angry.
    Creatively, my Mars harmonious aspect to my 8th house Pluto (in Leo) gives me visions of the “magic secrets” and both of these aspects to Saturn drive me to make it physically visible. It shows in the astrological work that I do.

    • Thanks, William. Lots of folks here with a Mars/Aries 1st house influence. Maybe I draw them because I have it too–rams of a feather flock together. Donna

  39. I have a question, Donna. I wasn’t swuft enough to get in on the 1st House Q&A but my question should probably be here anyhow because it is strictly Asc-related.

    How would a highly aspected Asc differ from a slightly aspected Asc in terms of whether the Asc is a good pic of us or an illusion? How differently would the two tend to come across, I guess is my question?

    • Hmm. I’d say an Ascendant with lots of aspects gives a truer picture of the complexities of an individual because so many of the planets get expressed readily. Probably confuses the viewer no end, however. (“But yesterday you were so enthused about the project and today you seem to be waffling and full of criticisms. Wha happen??”) Donna

    • wow, good question!!

    • It would all depend on which several planets were involved, for each of them would color the Ascendant in different ways. Donna

      • My Asc makes major aspects to every planet except Sun and Uranus (which aspect themselves almost exclusively – and both in Fire, not my good Earth).

        Maybe that’s what my mother picked up on when she told me once that I was “wishy-washy”. Rest assured, the last thing on earth I am is wishy-washy but she might have meant adaptable or something.

        Or confusing. LOL Nobody else has ever described me the way she did so who knows?

        Thanks Donna! 😀

  40. I’ve read several times that Scorpio Asc might be more Scorpio than Scorpio Sun. I think they meant in terms of the negative traits of Scorpio – a sort of beware the vengeful wrath etc …
    But when would the Asc be “more” than the Sun?

    • Sounds like an opinion based on bad experiences with Scorpio Rising. Donna

  41. Virgo Ascendant with Uranus rx & Pluto rx conjunct, Saturn/Mercury rx/Chiron opposes in the 7th, Aries Sun & Mars conjunct in the 8th. Neptune is quintile the Ascendant.

    Most don’t see me at all at first so that definitely hides that Aries Sun/Mars conjunction thinking that I’m a quiet, sweet, non-confrontational, girly, girl. Shoot, those closest to me that have known me for years still don’t know the real me or they assume that I’m someone that I’m not.

    Sane weirdo, yep!

  42. I’m a little like msfullroller in that I have a Virgo rising with Pluto (in Virgo) conjunct from the 12th and Uranus (in Leo quintile my Sun) hiding there also. My Libra Venus (in the 2nd, conjunct my Libra Sun) is the first planet to greet people, so I think people initially view me as being friendly, which I am. But that’s not the whole picture.

    Someone I knew from junior high school once came into my place of work, and seeing me speak “assertively” to a student, commented that he was shocked because I’d always been so mellow and soft-spoken (translation: painfully shy, with no self-confidence). My Pluto began to show itself more frequently as I got older. So did my Sun.

    And I used to kind of freak out fellow co-workers at office parties; at work I was pretty much seen as one dimensional – a super efficient, responsible manager; they were shocked to see my alter ego come out to play at night. Those who abuse their power also bring my Pluto side out, and it usually comes as a big surprise.

    I’ve also frequently hidden my awareness, intelligence and intensity of feeling, so as not to offend or overwhelm . . . up to a point. All this is far less true as I get older.

    I’ve read Uranus in the 12th is far more comfortable expressing itself on the internet, which has been at least partially true for me.

  43. I love reading the questions from readers and your clever comments. ( also good practice in visualizing their charts)
    I re read your how strong is your sun post and saw for the first time the “for your own purposes” directions on winning a talent contest and being on Tv and did one parent think the sun rose in you… now how much weight did these have? ( just curious )
    In my post on jupiter/pluto on ascendant I neglected to say that my cancer first house is a true representation of my deeper nature..mothering and all, despite that pluto facade.

    • The “for your own purposes” suggestion isn’t meant to be a real score, it’s just meant as a joke. I put one of those on every test because I get tired of answering all the questions about why not add this minor chart factor or that to the test. Donna

  44. I’ve always considered that a sort of mutual reception situation existed between Pluto in Leo in the First and, paradoxically, Sun in Cancer in the 12th. I mean, for one thing, the Sun, who wants to be “out there, shining”, is obscured in the 12th, and Pluto, the most hidden planet of all, is thrust into the 1st. Also, the Sun is held back a bit by Cancer’s timidity and tendency to withdraw, while the darkness of Pluto is on display in attention seeking Leo. I feel downright schitzophrenic, always conflicted between inappropriate self-revelation and obsessive secrecy. Yikes!

  45. I’m Aries Sun with Capricorn rising. People seem to describe me as this sort of responsible, dependable, hardworking person; especially the females in the family tend to see me through this lens. However, inside, I scream to break free, go my own way and stop being so boringly “nice”. With transiting Pluto on my Cap AC right now, maybe I’ll succeed 🙂

  46. Another great post with very interesting comments Donna!

    I’m a 28 Cap rising, so I have Cap on the 12th as well as the 1st. If this is the case, does that mean that the 12th is no longer in hiding? My Saturn resides in the 12th.

    Also, to your point, people always perceive me as traditional, conservative, hard working, responsible (I’ve had so many people say to me, You’re an oldest child aren’t you?) and that is generally how I present myself at work. My 3 Sag planets are always giggling some what and when “the party girl” comes out, folks are always amazed.

    It’s my 1st house that’s intercepted by Aquarius with Chiron @ 22 there. Lately I’ve been wondering how much that Aquarius impacts how others see me, but with the Cap rising and chart ruler in Cap in the 12th, I’m thinking that the Aquarius isn’t that much of an influence on other’s perceptions.

    Any thoughts you have are appreciated 🙂 Thanks!

  47. I have Pisces rising. With Aquarius in the 12th, I guess even though Pisces is all about merging and divine love deep down perhaps we just wish the world to heck. It might be odd to picture a Pisces that loves independence. I have been told I seem to exist on a different plane, like separate a world of fantasy. In my world of fantasy, I’m alone on a beach and I like it that way. Water and solitude, living in a Picarius world heehee. I have often thought that if I can get to choose my Sun sign, I would choose to be an Aquarian or Sagittarian, anything but a water sign again.

    However, I find being near water comforting, especially when I take a shower it feels healing mentally and physically. I think better. Maybe it’s because I have a grand water trine with Pluto, Asc and Sun. My North Node also conjuncts my Asc, so even though the Asc is more of a facade to the outside world, I have this feeling it’s a very key point point to my personality, almost a destiny.
    I think people might see me more as a push-over/ too spacey to hold strong emotions, and not notice my extreme tenaciousness. In that way, the Asc facade does protect the Cancerian emotionality. Also, I might be seen as being soft-hearted, so it often disguises my extreme bull-headed stubbornness as a Taurus Moon. Always better to be underestimated so that people can let their guard down, until you pinched their butt with a pincer if they step on you 😀

    I also have Mars in the 1st Donna, rams of a feather herd together. It’s a fierce combination. Again, Pisces hides that aggressive rawness well, or at least disguise it enough that people tend to get discombobulated when I go all Xena: Warrior Princess when provoked, I even surprise myself.

  48. I can identify with this!

    My Ascendent conjuncts Venus in Libra which trines my Aquarius Moon and sextiles my Sagittarius Mercury. I use this to hide my Pluto/Uranus conjunction and my Mars in Virgo.

    Unfortunately, I have a Sun/Neptune conjunction in Scorpio which acts like a blind spot. I am so busy trying to hide by 12th house planets people’s reaction to my 1st house catch me by surprise.

  49. I have Uranus on a Scorpio Ascendant. I *think* very private and cool, not a lot gets out. Sometimes I think people see what they want to see (numerous aspects to the Asc?). But then I have a first house moon – heart on my sleeve?? Empathetic yes, but I don’t think anyone knows what I’m thinking.

    You said “I’d believe you more about that Uranus on your Ascendant if you had one of those gravitars with a photo of yourself. (Smiley face)”.

    Really? That made me giggle, but I’d never have a picture of myself. Scorpio ascendant’s OTT privateness makes me laugh at myself, but I’m afraid I really can’t help it!

  50. I have cancer ASC- 25′ & cancer sun- 28’….

    One WOULD think i’m THE ultimate crab..

    Yet I am much more like Aries- My MC- with Jupiter conj it from the 10th…..

    I quite like my Jup aries trine pluto leo

    & I have mars & uranus conj in cancer, too! In house 12

    Fiery water


    Donna- terrific topic

  51. I wouldn’t! I’m a first house sun conj. asc (both in virgo), so I can totally relate to what you’re saying. Textbooks say that 1st h. suns are a lot like Aries.
    When I was younger I was all Aries-I mean the hardcore textbook version of it, now, after enormous efforts on my part, I’ve managed to tone down my aries side, and I consider myself more of a Virgo-Aries combination.
    That said, may I ask you a question? Do people ever attribute to you leo traits (due to the sun-asc conjunction)? I get that all the time, though I have no planets in Leo (except from my NN in the 12th), and I’m nothing like lions! I don’t even like lions! (I only fall in love with them…Occasionally..(!))

    • Yes- People ‘see’ leo often.. I have merc conj pluto in leo- H2..

      It receives the trine from aries Jup- H10…

      How uncanny of you to ask !!!!!

      What ‘wonderful mysteries’ we get to speak of here..

      Many will disagree- but I am glad to have venus in virgo..

      IF it were in leo- I can easily see myself as ‘overkill’

      FullMoon is square my Sun !!!


  52. Yep…Sweet as pie and twice as nice Libra Ascendant with a nit-picky, bitchy Virgo side that comes out once you know me well and get on my last nerve.
    BUT…..I have Neptune Ascending, so I can appear to be all things to all people or to be nothing to anyone…THEN Neptune runs into Mars deep in the first and goes, HUH?
    Sweety pie Libra turns into a very martial Aries..But only if I am outraged or if I am pushed.
    Otherwise pudding pie reigns.

  53. this is a popular subject!!! it made me think Donna, what would be our ‘online’ persona? where would you look for it in a chart, the 3rd house maybe?

    • Quite a good question, Sabrina. I’d say the 11th would be the social network online, the actual people involved, but the persona? Is that the nickname/gravitar, which would maybe be the 1st, or is it the communication style, which ought to be the 3rd? If you do derivational houses, on the other hand, the original 11th becomes the 1st, so that makes the original 1st the 3rd. (Does anyone else get a headache trying to come up with derived houses?) Donna

      • LOL I got dizzy just trying to follow you deriving the houses! I completely see the 11th there, is probably how we experience the world-wide-web and sounds like the 3rd could be the ‘virtual’ 1rst…

  54. My empty house 11 is ruled by venus..

    My natal venus is in virgo in the 3rd house conj the south node…

    I find it interesting that you mention ‘names’ & what rules them- in that I have had many different
    monikers in different industry

    I consider my venus in exact sextile to uranus- a plus


  55. Never looked at it that way 1/5/70 born 3am phila,pa

  56. Hi, Donna!
    I’ve always been confused about my 12th/1st house placements and my rising sign. I have Jupiter/Sun/Asc conj. at the end of Pisces in the 12th. My ascendant/Jupiter conjunction is at 29° + on the Aries cusp. My Aries 1st house holds a Moon/Venus/Chiron conjunction.
    What would be more obvious in my demeanor/impression- 12th or 1st house energies?

    • That’s a complicated 1st house/12th house mix, and not seeing the whole chart, I’d still say the planets conjunct the Ascendant would be most visible, even though they’re in the 12th. Donna

  57. Wow. This is a great post. I have Sagittarius Rising with Neptune in the 1st. I definitely smile and play dumb to cover up the fact that I might kill you – and get away with it – if you get on my bad side. Knowing how far people will go with me when they think I can be exploited helps me defend myself against them. My reasoning is that if someone has good intentions, then they won’t take advantage of me when they think my guard is down or eyes are wide shut. This helps me know how much of my emotions (Moon) and wild side (Uranus) I can show them if I decide to trust them (Scorpio on the 12th).

  58. Almost forgot…my Asc trines Jupiter, so this also helps me with the happy-go-lucky “facade” as you call it. People think I’m a lot more forgiving than I really am. Also have Asc opp. Mars, so some people think I’m more aggressive than I am, too, which conflicts with the Neptunian stuff. They don’t know whether I will be their victim or attacker.

  59. This post is so interesting. Skywriter is such a great site, thanks Donna. (and thanks to those who share too)

    I’m a pisces sun with scorpio rising and uranus conjunct the ascendant from the 12th house (4 degrees away.) I’m definitely ‘visible’ in my environment, like lightning at times, something that felt very uncomfortable and painful while I was growing up: I looked very different from the others due to being mixed-race and was very tall compared to the average girl.

    Uranus conjunct the ascendant people probably feel stared at very often!

    Venus is parallel to my ascendant (some minutes more than 0 degrees) so as an adult woman (and with a 29 degrees proud and slightly narcissistic ‘big hair’ leo MC) I’m very pleased of this uranian mix 🙂

    Yet my scorpio rising bit totally resents being seen, particularly resents to know that people might intuit I have unusual interests.

    About the libran 12th house, I agree with what someone above said before, I try to balance my moods and scorpionic reactions and be venusian/pleasing, achieve a mental and emotional balance. It’s hilarious (only in hindsight, of course) when I try to be venusian after a scorpionic lash out, stare or period of obsession!

    And Donna, yes, yearning for unconditional love deep down, wow. Partners and close friends know how affectionate I am in private; now that I’m a child counsellor, I get to show my venusian side – loving it!

    My main chart ruler pluto is in the sign of libra too, in the 11th house, and well aspected (still plutonian!) So, regardless of what this placement actually means in my life, libran energy is still part of my ascendant make up so it supports the 12th house needs.

    I think it’s interesting to see where the ruler of the 12th is in the natal chart. Tracy Marks gave me this thought (not directly, just when I read her twelfth house book.) Mine is in the 3rd so via my communication I can spill out some of my secrets if I’m not careful. Thanks to my rising sign I stop sharing before the damage is worrisome – in plutonian terms of course, which to some of my friends seem paranoid 🙂

    Back to the libran 12th house and people getting the wrong impression. People do see my venusian interests, I think that venus parallel helps apart from the chart ruler sign placement. The 12th house ruler in my communication house and conjunct mercury, which means I talk venusian too. And I’m feeling more open about spilling out my wish to be loved and to love.

    There’s one thing apart from the 1st/12th house thing which I think might be interesting to share. Sun trines my ascendant: my true essence is visible, yet my sun has some bad aspects and they (or the sun’s – my- struggle with them) show through the ascendant/sun link (IMO.) For example, I get people glamourising me and thinking I’m something I’m not and this is my sun pisces square neptune, I’m pretty sure. My sun squares moon and mars, and my mixed emotions and anger peek their heads via my ascendant. If I’m angry, feeling irritable, or confused for example, you can sense it, even if I try to hide it in a plutonian, venusian or neptunian way! (or that’s what I sense anyway.) Those who have moon in the first are a brave, sensitive bunch I’m starting to see!

    This post and writing this have been very enlightening actually (said this 8th house moon in gemini gal.)

    Happy holidays!

  60. You seem to downplay the importance of our ascendant. What’s yours? I think they play a vital role in who we are as people, not just our social selves. I personally believe that the sun is the ego, the moon the identity and the ascendant the temperament. I.e our nature, our manner of thinking and behaving. I always think of these three vital components like layers, the moon at the core, the sun a layer around the core and the ascendant on the surface, yet it is still a very truthful part of who we are-not a mask at all, just a true component of ourselves.
    I know a person born just a day after me, with the same planets in the same signs yet she is very different in the way she approaches life, she is pretty much a very different person to me-and it’s not a mask as I’ve known her for 10 years. I’m a Scorpio rising and I guess she’s a fire sign, she’s very extroverted, always the one to speak out, laugh easily, into drama, has many friends whereas I’ve always expressed myself through writing and music and have a very small number of deep friendships. Obviously there are more shades to her inner self, but the rising sign affects how we see things, our natural reaction to what the world presents to us and it represents our subconscious. It doesn’t hide anything, it’s role is not to cover up our true selves, it’s plays an important part in who we are and will always be there, will always affect us in the same way-thus I can’t understand why it’s considered a mask or a façade, when it is infact part of our true selves.

    Other than that, I love all of your work on this site. 🙂

    • I don’t downplay the role of the Ascendant. It’s just that vocational astrology is a major interest and specialty of mine, so that’s what I write about. That’s where the Midheaven comes in. Donna

  61. hello donna, your writing is wonderful:)

    i just read this article and wants to add, things are sometimes as they appear:)

    even if you discover many other layers of a person once you get to know him better.

    i have a libra ascendent, conjuncting an otherwise unaspected 1st house libra venus.

    even with the famous pluto/uranus conjunction in 12th house opp saturn in 6th house and whatever else spice it all up in my chart, the longer i live and the more life forces/allows me to reflect, i always return to this as the singular most powerful and pure influence in my life.

    ps. and its certainly helped me always behaving like a gentleman while doing all the dirty stuff my scorpio mars has lured me into over the years;))

  62. I am Libra rising with Neptune conjunt Mercury conjunct South Node all exactly conjunct my ascendant. All of these sextile Venus in Sag and Pluto in Leo. My Scorpio sun is in the first house as well. Help! What does this mean with all these exact conjunctions to my Libra ascendant?

  63. Forever late to the ball here, and I dropped the glass slipper BEFORE dancing, not at Midnight. They got that wrong in the original. =) So here goes. My head is so stuffed with my chart, so much of it I don’t understand, and it worries me that I don’t. LOL Nothing new there …

    I posted recently in one of the Stellium threads, Donna (June 22 Cancer {Cap rising} , sun, moon, mercury, venus, uranus stellium) I found this article, which is wonderful- I’m studying. I have only Chiron in my 1st house with Galactic center in the 12th. No planets in those houses? Is this very weird? Ah, who am I kidding? I’m eccentric and I usually like me that way.

    I’ve committed to scheduling an appointment with a good local astrologist. I have someone I trust to steer me in the right direction. I feel better already, just typing this “out loud”. Blessings and light upon your head and heart Donna!

  64. This has made me think….Libra rising with Neptune from the 12th within 4 degrees from asc. Neptone 3 degrees from Chiron in 12th and Jupiter 3 degrees from Chiron in the 12th. Jupiter is 29 Virgo. Neptune is square the North/south nodes on mc and Nader.
    In early childhood I observed everything , people and houses , trying to pick up vibes and reading them. Later I studied scientific hand and body reading which always came in handy when in situations with people. I also had traffic with subtle realms which was natural to me. I enjoyed picking up vibes and reading them. Intuition was always the crowning authority in my conclusions. Pallas in the 1st house in Libra 5 degrees from. Asc.. Trine Aquarius moon in the 5th and mars conjunct Uranus in the 9th.the warrior aspect came out and was noted by my father, an undefeated golden gloves boxer. He surmised this when I was 3 or 4 and taught me moves.It later came in handy.the nodal square was comfortable as I knew my ways and perceptions were different from environment at large and I was good with that position. Leo sun.

  65. there seems to be a lot of scorpio ascs around over here..;) or were- the blog is a couple years old but internet doesnt know time i guess. its interesting to get all those insights. so here i go. pluto is on my scorpio ascendant, squaring the mercury/sun/venus in aquarius (3rd/4th house) and the moon in leo (9th/10th h), both within 10 degrees of the mc/ic-axis.

    plus, south node on pluto/asc and mars somewhere in the first house in scorpio too. i feel like i should be embracing my pluto asc more consciously (pluto and mars-opp-lilith are rather “happening to me” – i feel like a completely different person then) but with that south node, ive been dealing with the downsides of pluto a lot. embracing the pluto would mean embracing my own “power”, instead, when meeting new people, i’m hiding behind my 12th house libra i guess (all get along, smiley smile, all nice, cant say no, cant stand up for myself). (LOL i just wrote “meating” people instead of “meeting”before correcting it OMG)

    its hard to own that pluto since an aquarius-ic-sun doesnt actually want to feel powerful, it doesnt want to feel its own sexiness and body, it wants to be all mind and thoughts and everybody equal everybody cosy and nice and care for each other (at least in theory- because its aquarius after all, not cancer lol sadlol)

    so i dont have that asc/pluto under my control, neither that hurt 1st house-mars(-squared by nessus and lilith!( OMG!). or maybe i do more than i think. i dont know. i come across like a scorpio-woman on first glance i guess, either sensual/sexual or desperate/destroyed depending on my many moods. or like a weirdo-aqu depends. or a bit arrogant/proud without “feeling it” and child-like (leo-moon) . it all plays along. or actually i dont know. how should i.

    i would love to come across strong though (mars in 1st) (started working out, im a straight cis-gender woman btw lol) insteas more often than not, im feeling shy and petite and powerless (yeah thats a scorpio-manifestations too i guess)..
    dont know if i will ever really embrace that scorpio-part positively or whether it will keep embracing me, from time to time. i would love to, but then again..

    or maybe a scorpio will never show its power on the outside, just have it on the inside, ideally?

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