I am 20 years old and nearing the end of my 9th house year. I still have four months to go in which I'm sure all of the action will happen (because that’s just how it goes) but I have spent the last 8 months saturated in this energy. It has activated my North Node in Cancer, my destiny, who I am to become. It has been a moon ruled year, often reflective of home, family, the inner world and emotions. My moon is conjunct venus of love, value, money, and enjoyment. In the placidus system my moon falls into the 5th house and in the whole signs system it is in the 6th house. Either way, it’s in Aries. Aries is the sign of anger- deserved and undeserved, felt and unfelt, seen and unseen. It’s the sign of the inner child, the sign that begs for drive and flame, the sign that feels restless and uncomfortable with the moon and venus. It is not pretty or dainty or malleable by others. Aries is not a sign you can shape, it is eternally at its purest form, it’s innermost child and self. Even if an Aries tries to hide it, the flames and the steam burn through until it’s too hot to handle and you end up burning yourself. or others. or everyone in your wake.
My North Node in Cancer is activated. The North Node is destiny, what you have come to Earth to learn in this lifetime. While I have had a 9th house year before, as we all do at age 8 and while I will have quite a few more 9th house years to come (ages 32, 44, 56, 68, and so on), this is the first time I have been so aware of it. Cancer is the sign of home, family, loved ones, gentleness. Cancer is the sign of care, sensitivity, mastery of emotion. It carries all the wisdom of the moon as this is its ruler. This is what I am supposed to grow into. The North Node is where we are going and what we are learning to be, but the South Node is what we come to Earth equipped with already. The South Node will always be the opposite of the sign your North Node is in. My South Node is in Capricorn in the 3rd house. I came equipped with the knowledge of street smarts. Capricorn, the mature, industrious, rigid sign ruling over my third house of local environment, communication, perception, friendships and siblings. I know how to be efficient in my communication. Capricorn over the third house is like a local gangster. Badass, terrifying, but able to handle business with maturity. Its maturity is what makes it frightening. It’s funny because as a teenager I was nicknamed “Mob Boss Kiddo Kahoots” by one of my employees. I was a child, but I knew how to be the boss. The way that I processed information and communicated was mature and worthy of recognition. Capricorn is efficient but it can have a hardass rigidity to its perception. Thinking and therefore believing that life has to be difficult and strict and mature. This is what it has known. It has experienced the roughness of the streets and it thinks that life always has to be this way– this is the way it is for any Capricorn south node or those that have their south node falling into the 10th house.
The 9th house is about expansion. spirituality. beliefs. other cultures and places and ideals that differ from your own. It's about big picture thinking and distance. travel. experience. It is the opposite of the 3rd house, it isn’t the perception you were born with, it’s the perception you develop. Having Cancer on the 9th house, the sign of homey, comforting love. The sign of care, gentle, slow nurturing. This is a year that forces a wider perception to include these themes. This year has served as a catalyst to force me out of my mob boss past and thrust me into a gentler future. The 9th house year is incredibly humbling because it knocks you on your ass and fundamentally breaks down everything you thought you knew about the world. It requires compromise with the 3rd house and forces you into changing your perspective, broadening it. This is so contradicting because while this year is, in a larger sense, pulling me closer to gentleness– it does this by waving it my face at a distance.
In a 9th house year everything is at a distance from you. You reach out for the things that you want and you take a journey. You journey to what you want thinking you’re going from point a to point b. but of course you aren’t.
You are instead taken down many winding roads and detours and nothing looks like you thought it would– like you pictured– opposite of the 3rd house where we get our ideas and thoughts. Oppositions require compromise. So the 9th house (your destination) requires compromise with the 3rd house (your initial thoughts). Once you get to point b- the destination is so unrecognizable that you’re completely unsatisfied and you want to start all over. The 9th house will teach you that your initial thoughts about your destination are usually wrong. It's entirely about the journey and the experiences and the people you meet along the way. During a 9th house year, you might go on a journey that leads to an unfulfilling destination or you might meet beautiful people (conjunct my venus) who have beautiful bodies and beautiful souls who are constantly dreaming about something bigger than you and better than you and they won’t take the time to be still with you. Not because you aren’t enough (6th house) but because they are off to the next thing because they think it’ll make them happy. They might leave you (bringing up inner child wounds, 5th house moon) thinking there is something better out there. They might travel far, far away only to discover that their innermost joy was right there in front of them, before they had the insight to see around their gigantic map. No shame in this, because you’ll do the exact same thing to them.
My moon ruled 9th house year has taught me that home is a mindset. It isn’t four walls and furniture, it isn’t found in a gps, it isn’t something you can physically find. It is found unexpectedly and it is usually (ugh, so cliche) within. Or it might be in your lover’s eyes or in your little brother’s smile or in the rumbling purr of your cat. It might feel like it’s at a distance from you, but it’s always inside. Waiting for you to tap into it. Waiting for you to become still enough, quiet enough to hear it.
That being said, your own inner vision is extremely important. You’ll meet so many people who have different inner visions. People who downright disagree with your personal vision for yourself. People who might act like they’re on board with your personal vision, just to completely jump ship. Or if they aren’t abandoning, they might instead take a bath in the mud and run their dirty footprints all over your painting. Your vision. Ruining the canvas? Maybe. Or maybe they are showing you that your vision is meant to be protected. They might leave marks because maybe you needed to expand this in some way. Maybe your vision wouldn’t have been complete without the footprints of others, the insight of others. You spend your time crying over how it would’ve been better if they hadn’t mucked it up, but it wouldn’t have. Though it will teach you who is supposed to be at a distance. Leaving their mark and sharing their piece once is good enough. You don’t need their mud caking the entire canvas because then… whose canvas is it? It wouldn’t be your vision anymore. It would blend and mold with theirs. Protecting your personal vision is important.
Upholding this and refusing to compromise your flame and inspiration (aries) for others (6th house). Because deep down, you know you deserve to have this vision. For me, in a moon ruled year, this is about home and family and partnership. The physical and nonphysical version of these things. My vision of home and family deserves to be fulfilled, but the universe will teach you a few things about what it is that you don’t want first. This is to preserve the vision. Think about the canvases. You don’t create a masterpiece the first time, you practice. You learn about what kind of paint you like and what brushes to use and– oops! Maybe I should have sketched this out better and shit! I added too much there and fuck. I didn’t mean to do that. You emerge with an imperfect painting and before you know it, you’re begging to try again. You know more now. You’re so much older and wiser than when you started sketching the last painting. So the universe lets you scrap it and try again. You know what you want now. Maybe there were parts of the last painting that you can never imitate again. No two paintings are alike and while you may have hated big parts of your practice painting, you also really loved parts of it. You can’t get those things back or if you can, they might look very different. This is okay. It is a part of the fleetingness of life, of art, of experience.
The 9th house will teach you about fleeting moments. You won’t appreciate them for what they are until they’re gone. Though after the first few times, you get the memo. Life is about being whole heartedly present. Once again, talking about the opposition and compromise between the 3rd house (memory) and the 9th house (moments, experiences). You experience the moment, you let it go, you don’t forget it for a moment though. We take these little moments, stringing them together like macaroni until they create a little necklace. Cherished only by those who made them… because let’s be real, no one wants a macaroni necklace as a gift. It doesn’t mean as much to them, but these little noodles are built of the grains you planted. Your personal collection of insight and memory. They won’t mean anything to anyone else, but each one is a memory. Each one is a truth that you have found and discovered.
The 9th house is the realm of discovery. You’ll discover loads of information (opposite of the 3rd house). Tangible and intangible. Information you would have rather stayed hidden, truths that you wish you hadn’t known, prophecies you wish you could unsee. It is about turning knowledge into wisdom. I have been living with two other people in their 9th house years over the last 6 months (both with Cancer NN/Capricorn SN, too) and the same person who told me “ignorance is bliss” is the same person who told me “knowledge is power” perhaps showing a transformation between two ideals. Or maturity in an ideal as this person has a Saturn ruled 9th house with Saturn transiting there (Saturn shows restriction that transmutes into maturity).
During a 9th house year, others might try to hold their knowledge and wisdom over you as if it were a power play. The 9th house is the realm of college. We say it’s “higher learning” because not everyone goes to college of course and it’s more of a metaphorical house anyway. Though this year has been reminiscent of a college experience. You go to school with an ego the size of the university, thinking (3rd house) that you know what life is like (9th house). You sit through classes with professors who supposedly know more than you. They wave their fancy degrees in your face and use them as an excuse to be a pompous asshat. You complete the course or the degree thinking that you’ll be different and changed and that you’ll know so much more. Though as we already know, it isn’t anything like you thought it’d be. You might know more, but maybe you realize that people gatekeep knowledge. They use this knowledge, holding it over your head, exploiting you and taking your thousands and thousands of dollars to teach you things you are actually teaching yourself. You might even come to find out that your professors? They’re just human beings. Having a degree doesn’t make you any more insightful than you have strived to be. A piece of paper cannot measure the knowledge that you do or don’t possess. You may even find that the mentor you thought was so great is actually a sad alcoholic. Or they might be a “do as I say, not as I do” kind of person. In a 9th house year, people are like that. They claim to know more and be more than they actually are. And of course you’ll believe them. The 9th house is about belief. You learn about discernment this way.
Since this year was an Aries moon ruled year, this presents Aries themes. Wherever I go, all my life I will be presented with Aries themes. This is what happens when you have a stellium (3 or more planets in one sign or house). Everything will always come back to this stellium, this sign, this house theme. For me, everything will always come back to Aries, to the 6th house, and it will always activate my moon, my venus, my mercury– and even at times my sun sign. These are all linked together, a package deal. You deal with one, you deal with all. Like I was saying earlier, Aries is not an easily bendable sign. It is a warrior. Aries has lived and breathed the war. It knows chaos and destruction. It’s sibling, Scorpio, is ruled by the same planet. Mars. Scorpio is like a soldier returning home from the war, they are forever changed. Scorpio is an evolution thanks to its co-ruler Pluto. It evolves because of the death it has seen, like a butterfly. I am a Scorpio rising, so while I will go through many of these evolutions in life, I will always be so brightly myself. This is because of Aries. Aries doesn’t have two rulers. Aries is Mars. Mars is Aries. Aries is the cause. It knows what it wants, it isn’t afraid to get it, it isn’t afraid to fight. Aries, a fire sign, cannot be suppressed. If you try, it will fight you. It will not go down without kicking and screaming, you will hear its battle cry. I am forever changing and evolving, but the cause is the same. I remember why I entered the war and I will die fighting for this cause and if I come home, I will come home never regretting this and always remembering why I fought in the first place. If you try to suppress an Aries, they will burn it all down.
This is so contradictory and yet so complimentary to the 6th house where my Aries stellium resides. The 6th house is about service to others, duty. Much like a soldier who feels a duty to its cause. Though Aries is a self serving sign. Not because it is selfish, but because it is independent. The 6th house is about health, giving and receiving, routines, healing, self improvement. Having the moon, venus, and mercury (and sometimes my sun depending on the system) there means that my value, my comfort, my ideas, and at times– my identity and ego are all tied up in how I am of service to others. The problem with this is that when Aries is ignored, Aries gets angry. If I give into the 6th house and I make it my whole being to be of service to others– especially in my daily life, routines, mundane tasks (cleaning, cooking, working)– then I am fulfilling my duty to the 6th house, but I am not fulfilling my duty to my Aries stellium. If I give into the 6th house, giving too much to other people, Aries gets angry. Aries is reactive and I will see chaos and turmoil pointed in all directions. Resentment. Violent flare ups with my personal health. Falling behind and backtracking in my own healing, routines, and self improvement. I often get very sick when I betray my body like this for others.
Though if I take care of myself (Aries) others will see this independence as selfishness. They will get angry because it is Aries, the sign of anger and war. They will take this all wrong, as a personal attack. With my moon sign here, this is the environment that I live in. The 9th house serves as the ultimate teacher and mentor– and the ruler of my 9th house is the moon in Aries in the 6th house. The 9th house teaches me about taking care of myself through an explosive and angry home environment. It teaches me about standing up for what I believe in, my cause, my personal vision through my home. Creating distance (9th house) between me and the comfort (moon) I so desire. This was a lesson that I had to experience in order to understand that I must live alone. Aries is independence, it is aloneness. Not isolation. You have to remember that Aries is the opposite of Libra, the sign of relationships. It lives life independently so that it can come together with other people (Libra) to collaborate and share its cause. You have to have a multitude of other people to help you fight for your cause, for justice (Libra is the scales) after all. It is about learning how to compromise with others without compromising the self. The 6th house will teach you that you must take care of yourself before you take care of anyone else.
And as frustrated as I am with how the home that I have created has turned out… I know that I couldn’t know what I want without this. The cause is the same– my Aries moon fights for a home. A place it can belong. Though if Aries is all about The Self and independence– this is where it will find a home. I thought that I would find a home in a shared space with other people. I thought a home was made up of people. Loved ones. I have learned that this cannot be true for me. For an Aries moon, home is found within the self. Alone. Having Cancer on the 9th house indicates that loved ones are often at a distance from me, seeking their own personal vision. While I miss them so dearly, I know I cannot control their expansion. They have to learn what home is for them. In fact, with my Aries stellium, it is often better that these people are at a distance. Cancer on the 9th house is “Distance makes the heart grow fonder” personified. This is what I have learned this year. I have learned that the people we love and the experiences we have are what makes the world go round– but not at the cost of losing yourself. It has been a year full of contradictions and it isn’t even over yet. I know that I needed this first canvas to make mistakes. To learn from them, to add on to them, to laugh at them. Now, I’ll have fun building an even better work of art. Maybe I’ll slow down and enjoy the process a bit more this time. Maybe this time I won’t rush to achieve a final product and instead bask in the sunlight, turn on the music, smoke a little weed and actually enjoy the painting process. This is what I will strive for in the last four months before 21, before the 10th house year.