The 12th House of Bridges

The first house/ ascendant is the sign rising on the east horizon as you were born. But upto a couple of hours before you were born, the sign which occupies your 12th house was rising. The first day of your life, before you arrived as an independent person, the 12th house sign rose at the east preparing the environment for your to-be-born person/ environment. It was then the bridge between the Pitrulok and the Martyalok. 

The instant of birth is beautifully synchronised by the Moksh trikon. We are born (1st house) from the energies of our past lives (12th house) we settle into the security of our new destination Martyalok (4th house) and the umblical cord is cut (8th house) completing the birth process.

The 12th house rules the immediate past life. All the stuff from the immediate past life is the resource from which your new persona/environment is created. At the moment of death, the entire life passes before one’s consciousness, in a span of a second, infinitely fast. You watch your current life’s replay in a single glimpse. And you fix your consciousness on one incident from this life as you pass out of the body-shell. This impression decides your immediate next life. You have this choice at your point of exit. If you can choose consciously, you have control over your next life. Or if you can power your exit with a mantra like ‘Om’, Soham Hamsa you can propel yourself to a better energy state or even gain Videha Moksha. But most of us are quite scared at this point, so miss out on this literally once in a lifetime opportunity. 

Most astrologers are hesitant about deciphering the 12th house. Its traditional meanings of losses, reduction of the physical manifested, dreams, spirits, solitude, dream states, requirement of leaving the home and familiar environments, private prayers, contemplation, sleep, dream-states, past lives, imprisonment, insanity, sensitivity to the other dimensions and to astral cues, etc are quite unsettling. Your 12th house brings to you all the feelings, thoughts, images from your past lives which shape your present life. This information can be enabling or threatening to your present sense of self. Regrets from the past life and also its successes are stored here.


Examine your 12th house, the sign, the occupant planets, the aspecting planets. Then the location of this sign’s ruler planet, which sign is he in, the planets with him and aspecting him. Use the keywords of the planets, signs and houses to get a general idea of what type of results you can expect. If you feel confident about reading your Navamsha, then check out all these planets you have identified. Do they gain power in the D9, will they give auspicious results or not. So now you have a reasonable idea of your 12th house and its power to give results. This is the baseline, more events and their timings will depend on the Dasha and the transits as always.

If there are several or significant planets connected to the 12th house, you have a lot of your conscious life connected to the affairs of the 12th house. There will be several issues from your past lives which you will be resolving, albeit unconsciously, in this life. If you have your ascendant sign ruler planet or the Moon or the Sun in the 12th house you need to take care as the personality will be, as a whole, more into the inner subconscious world. If any of the other planets are placed here, then you will focus on your inner side as per the keywords of that planet. eg Jupiter here will make you base your life’s philosophies on your experiences of the 12th house. If you have the biggest karmic boss Saturn here, you will be required to work your karma out in the astral dimensions.

If there are no planets placed in the 12th house, it is empty, then you do not have significant karma connected to this house. Then examine the owner planet to know how you use the mysterious energy of the 12th house in your life. One exception here will be the Aquarius ascendant sign. Here the ruler of the 1st and 12th houses will be the same taskmaster Saturn. The second exception will be Leo ascendent as the other luminary Moon rules the 12th house. Both these ascendant signs, the personality will be equally at home and equally active in the conscious and sub-conscious dimensions of existence.

The 12th house is the house of extreme results, let’s check its positive aspects in this post. If your 12th house is capable of giving auspicious results, then it can be a good sub-conscious foundation for the current life. The sign and planets placed here can be your secret helpers and your sub-conscious supports your conscious self in overall growth. You are able to use their energies in effectively managing your external world. These planets/ sign will indicate the positive karma from your past life which you are going to use to your advantage in this life. You were helpful, generous and kind to others in your past lives, worked on your spiritual growth and now in this life you are going to benefit and get a boost from all this.

You need more time alone as 12th is an intensely private house. You enjoy solitude, dislike noise, crowds and too many people around you. This isolation can be by choice or by necessity. You may live in the mountains, in an ashram or a spiritual retreat by choice, If not for a lifetime, then at least for a few significant years of your life. Or serve in such institutions by karmic necessity, eg in lunatic asylums, prisons, deep forests, mines. You either need to experience the isolation yourself or vicariously through others who are kept isolated. Solitude is often linked to self-introspection, delving into one’s own hidden depths to understand mysterious things about oneself. And you are very productive when you get this time alone. What you do now depends on the planets/ sign here. eg Mercury here can be a writer or Venus here can be an intense spiritual seeker. Your energies indicated by the 12th house are directed inwards so developing inner resources is very much possible.

You dislike crowds, dislike being in the public eye. You are very sensitive to the astral cues of other people, eg their aura affects you. If you become aware of someone seeing you, speaking to you, listening to you or around you, you feel conscious, shy and unable to perform normally. You feel vulnerable in a crowd. If you have major or several planets in the 12th house you tend to be an intensely private person. You go out in society, meet people, do your job etc but essentially you are not open to sharing things about yourself. Close friends will be limited and you cannot share your personal things even with them. Things of the 12th house desire to remain in the background. You are very protective of the things indicated by the 12th house as you are very deeply vulnerable to these. These things if affected adversely, do not remain on your conscious levels, they directly hit and are absorbed by your astral self.

Another interesting thing if you can observe is, in some families the 12th house of the all the members shows similar placements. This indicates that the family members are moving as a soul group, taking births in sync with each other and having deep subconscious links from their past lives together. The 12th house is the mirror of the 6th house. The house where you consciously repay the one-one personal karma v/s the house where you sub-consciously rebalance karma pending from past lives and linked to a large amorphous collective.

The 12th house can also indicate the situation in your earliest baby-hood and also the environment around your pregnant mother. You don’t remember all this stuff consciously. This is also the reason why sufferings of the childhood are considered highly karmic. These are linked to your earlier lives and leave a subtle impact on your entire current life.


Our example horoscope, Aleister Crowley, the genius occultist of recent times, birth details 12th Oct 1875, 11:43 pm Leamington UK. His Birth chart, Navamsha chart and Ashtakvarga are as follows.

In his birth chart, the 12th house is Gemini, vacant. Its ruler, Mercury is placed in the 4th house, with Venus and Jupiter. Of these two, Jupiter is quite closely placed by Mercury, and Mercury considers him to be an enemy. Venus is more than 15deg away so there is limited influence of Venus on Mercury. Then Jupiter aspects the 12th house with his ninth house aspect. So we will consider Mercury and Jupiter to be linked to the affairs of the 12th house. In the Navamsha Jupiter moves to Saturn’s Aquarius, a neutral position. And Mercury goes to Mars’ Aries a neutral-to-uncomfortable position. So we can deduce Mercury is not comfortable with all this and Jupiter will give neutral results.

We can glean more information from the Ashtakvarga table for this horoscope. The house total for the 12th house is 29 (the last row and the 12th column) so as a whole the house will give auspicious results. In transit through this house, the planets Jupiter, Venus and Saturn will give beneficial results. Sun and Moon will give average results. Mars and Mercury will give unfavourable results as per the Ashtakvarga analysis. Similarly for their Mahadasha-s. So now we know our basic background on the 12th house for further analysis depending on the questions if there were any. 

Birth chart Aliester Crowley

Navamsha Aleister Crowley
Navamsha Aleister Crowley

Ashtakvarga, an easy way to analyse transitsThe 12th house is an important house. The natural 12th sign of the zodiac is Pisces ruled by Jupiter. It is not bad but here you are required to learn very deep lessons which are pending over from your past lives. It might get uncomfortable at times. It is a part of the Moksh trikon. It creates the 9/5 axis with the 4th and 8th houses. We leave the body in the environment of the 8th house, intelligently navigate the transition using the resources of the 12th house and settle into our new destination dimensions using the energy of the 4th house.

If we accept that we prepare our lives for the moment of exit this Moksh trikon becomes more comprehensible. We prepare our mind-set through out our life. We try to meet our targets of karma rebalance. We try to make the most of this life-time and bring positive energies in ourselves. All this so that when that moment of exit comes we can make the most of it and propel our souls to even higher energy states. This genius and creativity of the moment of death is the 12th house. When we leave the body-shell this 12th house again is the bridge which brings us from the Martyalok to the Pitr-lok.

The 1st house is a reflection of the sub-conscious energies of the 12th house brought out into the conscious realm. And the 12th in the same cycle is created by the breakdown of the energies of the 1st house. This is the extraordinary significance of this 12th house.

It is strangely fitting that the instant before we were born and the instant after we leave is governed by the 12th house, the House of Bridges.




Retrograde planets and past lives..

Can planets really move backwards? Not really, if we could stand at the centre of the solar system, on the sun, we would see them moving regularly in their forward motions in their orbits. But then when we stand on the earth, which itself is moving around the sun, and then we look at these planets which are also moving around the sun, we sometimes get to see a planets moving apparently in reverse. Perspective is everything!

Generally everyone on earth has 2-3 retrograde planets. Very rarely none or all of them are retrograde in a particular chart. Sun and Moon are never retrograde. If you can check your horoscope, the retrograde planets will be specifically marked or mentioned as they have quite a bit of astrological significance. There are a lot of free websites for calculating your horoscope . Or if you want a handy app to calculate your horoscope, download any of the phone apps for vedic astrology. For android I have found “Hindu calendar” by developer “Alok Mandavgane” and for iphones “Drik panchang” by developer “Adarsh apps” to be quite accurate and user friendly.

The Lunar Nodes Rahu/Ketu always are retrograde. But if you calculate the their true motion, ‘true nodes’ occasionally around eclipses they move in a forward motion. Some astrologers do not consider this significant, but I have seen that direct nodes indicate a tremendous potential blocked by heavy karmic factors. These resolve by the age of 49yrs when Rahu/Ketu mature.

(A bit of statistics, Mercury will be retrograde in approx 8% of the charts you will get,  Venus 5%, Mars 7%, Jupiter 22% and Saturn 26%. In the charts you will get, at least one planet will be retrograde at 52%. So in plain english, half of the charts you will get to see will have at least one planet retrograde, with the likelihood being Saturn> Jupiter> Mars> Mercury> Venus being retrograde.)

Retrograde planets and past lives

So what do these planets in reverse do? Retrograde planets are energies which are directed inwards. Rather than going out from you to others, these energies enter your inner self, your past lives and traumas, replaying them again and again. It is like you replay an event in your mind again and again to analyse it again and learn more from it. Retrograde planets are linked to specific traumas or learning events from your past lives which have made such an impact that you want to review them again and extract the maximum learning possible from them. So let’s see what can be expected from the retrograde planets in your horoscope.

Retrograde Mercury

  • You are afraid to speak or express yourself creatively, you are scared of saying the wrong thing. If asked to speak in public you may actually feel ill. You are not sure about your intelligence and perhaps you stammer or have some speech impediment.
  • Perhaps in your past lives you misused your power of cutting, logical analysis and communication to cause harm to a large group of individuals.
  • In this life you have learn to believe in your intelligence and communication skills. Practice speaking in front of a mirror, try to start a blog, or vlog, draw/paint, sing. Do anything that gives you a creative outlet.
  • You have to power this intention daily, “I will speak out and express myself”

Retrograde Venus

  • You find relationships very unfulfilling and may have a string of girlfriends/boyfriends or divorce/remarriage patterns. You seek fulfilment from your partner but may have issues with intimacy and give up quite easily. You are searching for the love of your life but no clue on what it is that you really want.
  • Possibly in your past, you and your soulmate have been separated by forces beyond your control and you never learned to have a mature relationship. If you have never learnt what self love is, loving the other is also not possible.
  • Now, sit down, think deeply  and write down what you want in a relationship and what you want in your soulmate. Review this list after a week. Then try to look within you and think of what you can give back to such a partner, write it down. Later share these lists with your loved one.
  • Intend very strongly, “I know how to Love and I Love my own self”

Retrograde Mars

  • You feel guilty and shy for no reason. And you are unable to regulate your anger, you lose your temper spectacularly and may get violent, but then you feel extremely ashamed and guilty. You know a lot but cannot express yourself in competitions. Maybe you are a good sportsperson but for some reason prevented from actually playing.
  • Perhaps in your past life you were a thug, soldier, slave, goon, someone of significant physical power who served a master/king. And your master made you perform atrocities on a large number of people against your will. You followed your master’s cruel orders but your internal conscience accuses you.
  • You need to learn to relax and forgive yourself. May be do actual some physical charity work helping other people, not just giving donations. Maybe a simple 5 min daily routine where you can listen to your subconscious self.
  • A suitable daily intention for you is, “I forgive myself”.

Retrograde Jupiter

  • You do not feel comfortable with ‘religion’ and ‘show of religion’. You have never thought your teachers to be good enough to teach you and were never really comfortable in school. You follow non conventional religious and spiritual beliefs. You know a lot of unconventional knowledge but are not sure about teaching it to others. You feel that your students may not be well received in the society.
  • In your past lives you have left the society, either by force or choice, for following unconventional spiritual beliefs. Maybe you were a sadhu/tantrik/wise woman witch etc. Thus you have learnt to keep your spiritual beliefs inside you for fear of persecution/alienation. This is bad as the cycle has to be complete, if you learnt something from someone you are supposed to pass it on to others so that your internal balance is achieved.
  • Accept that what you know is valuable and deserves to be passed on. However weird your spiritual teachings may be, your students are waiting to learn from you. Write a blog on what you have learnt in this life and want to pass on. Even if no one reads that blog at least you have sent the energies out from you.
  • A daily affirmation with intention, “My knowledge is valuable and and I will teach”.
  • (Detailed post here)

Retrograde Saturn

  • You have issues with authority, boss and father figures. You work and work without support or recognition. You deeply resent it from the inside but these authority figures can make you do what they want. You cannot resist a direct order from your boss.
  • Retrograde Saturn means, in your past lives you were perhaps enslaved, tortured and abused by your masters. You never learnt to speak up to injustice being done on you. You worked and worked as a slave, dominated, bullied and without an identity. You are caught in this viscous cycle and now you need to learn to come out of a servile mindset.
  • You will have to learn being assertive and to work not just for the boss but also for the greater good.  You have to recognise that your hard work is a thing to be proud of. If you have such an opportunity, stand up for someone who is being abused or in a position of a servant. Help someone as act of charity, it will help you with your retrograde Saturn.
  • Affirm this with intention, “I have an Identity, I am (your name)”. Your name is your personal mantra, repeat it so that your sense of identity wakes up.
  • (Detailed post here and here)

Retrograde Uranus – 

  • You rebel against established norms. You were a student leader and won college elections. You like to fight the intellectual battle and you do it just because it is against the establishment. You are high strung and this lifestyle has destroyed the other facets of your life.
  • In past lives you have caused havoc in the lives of a large group of people by leading rebellions just for the sake of it. Your led revolts have succeeded and then the loss of establishment ruined the lives of several. This is the trauma that you are carrying around. You cannot continue experimenting with revolutions.
  • You must learn to compromise, win some lose some. Make out list on why establishment and structure is important.
  • Affirmation should be, “I am a part of Society”.


Retrograde Neptune

  • You incessantly daydream. You have a history of alcohol or drug abuse. You are always trying to escape reality. You are extremely creative and extremely intelligent in your own way. You are eccentric and cannot stand the humdrum of routine society.
  • You, in your past lives have run away from responsibility. You are still avoiding this lesson of living and functioning in the real world.
  • Now utilise the full potential of your tremendous creativity. Choose a creative outlet to stabilise yourself.
  • Remember that, “I am intelligent and I will create”.

Retrograde Pluto

  • You do not trust the world. You do not even trust yourself fully. You think you are unique in your own bubble and do not really care about the others around you. You are internally alienated from even your close family and friends.
  • In your past lives, there is a trauma where you were blamed, made a scapegoat and punished for something you perhaps did not do. You were alone at the receiving end and the entire community went against you.
  • Now, feel the universal love and connections between every little particle in the universe. You have to learn to trust yourself then your immediate family.
  • Intend, “I trust the Universe and the Universe trusts me back”

These were how the impressions and events from our past lives still influence us. Life is a series of teachings and we a bundle of the series of lives that we have lived. Retrograde planets are very useful markers in horoscope analysis. Use these markers and interpret them to add more joy and peace to your lives.