THE SOUL CHOICE HOUSES
By Sister Ray
As Originally Published in the December 2012 issue of Dell Horoscope
by Sister Ray the Astrologer
©Gail Lawson Clough
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SOUL CHOICE HOUSES: THE FIFTH HOUSE
CHOOSING THE PATH
SOUL CHOICE HOUSES: THE NINTH HOUSE
FINDING THE PATH
SOUL CHOICE HOUSES: THE TWELFTH HOUSE
WALKING THE PATH
SOUL CHOICE HOUSE CASE STUDIES
GABRIELLE “COCO” CHANEL
Who am I? Why am I here? Where did I come from? People turn to astrology to find the answers to these questions. Your horoscope, the map of the stars at the moment you take your first breath, can answer all of these questions, but the stars influence, they do not compel. You have free will to make the choices that you believe are best for you. The choices you made yesterday create your reality today and the choices you make today create your reality tomorrow. Dear reader, what would you think of the possibility that you also make choices between lifetimes, choosing your own stars and steering the course of your destiny with will and intent?
Most of us have lived before and we will live again. This is called reincarnation and astrology can help explain how it affects the individual. Before you are reborn, when you are between incarnations, you formulate a life plan for yourself, deciding what you want to accomplish in the upcoming lifetime. Then, you review your karmic record to determine your limitations and opportunities. Once you have set a course for yourself and reviewed your karmic scorecard, you have to find the right parents with planetary heredity that harmonizes with your personal soul choices. Once you have chosen your parents, you are almost at the point of no return, the time of conception. Here is where you take aim and jump back on the Ferris Wheel of karma, for once you have chosen your parents, your “reservation” has been made, and you are committed to returning to the world of form. You are almost at the finish line of labor and delivery. This is the trickiest and most dangerous part of re-entry. Not only is the physical aspect of birth a wild card, but it is said that soul choices can be thwarted, or even voided, if the birth is induced and the delivery is artificial. This is one of the first demonstrations that individual soul choices intersect and blend with the soul choices of others. Once the baby is safely born and the horoscope has been cast, where would the astrologer look to discover the soul’s pre-life intentions, the hidden choices that influence the course of individual destiny in this lifetime? Sister Ray believes that, for the following reasons, three houses in a person’s horoscope reveal the soul’s choices prior to incarnation: the fifth house, the ninth house, and the twelfth house.
SOUL CHOICE HOUSES: THE FIFTH HOUSE
CHOOSING THE PATH
The fifth house is the house of children, creativity and romantic love. Love between a man and a woman leads to the act of love, consummation of which can result in the conception of a child. Naturally, the fifth house would be the starting point for understanding soul choices, the point at which the soul chooses the path, selecting the themes and major life issues to be experienced in the impending incarnation. The astrologer would look to the fifth house of a person’s horoscope to determine what path the soul has chosen and why you are here.
SOUL CHOICE HOUSES: THE NINTH HOUSE
FINDING THE PATH
The ninth house is the house of foreign travel, higher education and the Akashic Record. The ninth house is the intermediate Soul Choice House, the house of finding the path. After choosing to incarnate, the soul starts looking for the right attributes to build the character needed to meet its personal goals by visiting the Akashic Record and reviewing the karmic report card. At this point, the soul tries to find the right parents, seeking parents with planetary heredity that harmonizes with the chosen purpose. The ninth house tells an astrologer what tools or attributes are at the individual’s disposal for realizing his or her primary goals in the current incarnation.
SOUL CHOICE HOUSES: THE TWELFTH HOUSE
WALKING THE PATH
The twelfth house is the house of secrets, hidden things, and the subconscious. It is also the house that concerns immediate pre-natal conditions. This is the most difficult and dangerous part of the soul choice process where the soul prepares for the moment of birth and walking the path of incarnation. This stage has the greatest potential for mishap. If all goes well, however, the newborn emerges into the world, takes his or her first breath, and begins her or his walk on the path of life.
The preceding description is an outline of how you steer the course of your destiny by the soul choices you make in between lifetimes. The greater your awareness of this process, the more control you have over your own fate. It is up to you to steer the course of your destiny. It would be helpful to look at a few case studies at this point to see how certain highly self-motivated souls have done this. What soul choices have certain souls made and how have their soul choices worked out for them?
SOUL CHOICE HOUSES CASE STUDIES
GABRIELLE “COCO” CHANEL
Gabrielle “Coco” Chanel was ruthlessly self-directed and thus makes a great case study for the Soul Choice Houses theory. Her fifth Soul Choice House of choosing the path is in Taurus, which is ruled by Venus. Venus is widely conjunct the Sun in Leo, giving her a great love for the stage and a sense of high drama. Her first artistic aspirations were in the theatre where she worked as a singer. It was at this early stage of her life that she gained the nickname, “Coco,” after two songs she used to perform. Later in her career, she designed costumes for Le Ballet Russe and Jean Cocteau. Venus is also the planet of love, and Chanel had many love affairs throughout the course of her life. Situated one degree from the fifth Soul Choice House of choosing the path is Neptune, planet of illusion, music, mysticism, deception and higher love. Love was her primary motivation and soul choice, the motivating force for incarnation, love in all of its forms: ideal love, carnal love, love of beauty, and of course, love of luxury and comfort. The Sun and Venus are in Leo in the eighth house of sex and death. Mademoiselle Chanel had many love affairs, the most important of which ended with the death of the love of her life, Arthur “Boy” Capel. Saturn, Pluto and Chiron in the 5th house would destroy all her great love affairs. Sadly, she was repeatedly thwarted and denied her desire for romantic love, but this did not stop her from attaining fame and fortune.
The 1910’s and the 1920’s were the beginning of the women’s liberation movement. Coco Chanel was a leading lady of liberation, who led by example. The sign on her 9th soul choice house is Virgo, which is ruled by Mercury. Mercury is conjunct Uranus in Virgo in the 8th house of death and other people's money. She got her start with financial backing from the love of her life, Boy Capel, who bankrolled her first shop. Her soul found the path to its destiny by shaking things up (Uranus), daring (Uranus) to speak freely (Mercury) and challenging the male establishment that controlled every aspect of a woman’s existence, even down to the underwear a woman was required to wear. Chanel’s Leo Sun squares the three outer planets, symbolizing how she fearlessly challenged several generations with her indomitable spirit and dynamic personality. She was a cultural revolutionary who completely changed the way women looked and how they felt about themselves. Gone were the uncomfortable corsets, stays, tight skirts and gigantic chapeaux that restricted women’s breathing and movement. Tight-fitting bodices and narrow, floor-length dresses were replaced by jackets and calf-length skirts. Heavy, ornate picture hats were replaced by straw boaters and unadorned, sleek, wide-brimmed black velvet bonnets. She dared to raid her lovers’ clothes closets for design inspiration, borrowing their elegant tailored simplicity. She smoked like a man, cut her hair short like a man, and never married. She was an independent woman, an icon of style and individualism who forged her path through hard work and service (Virgo) to the Goddess of Beauty (Venus). With Saturn conjunct Pluto and Chiron in Gemini, the sign on the sixth house of work (and co-ruled by Mercury, the ruler of the ninth soul choice house of finding the path) her path was one of hard labor with a perfectionist’s eye for simplicity of detail and elegance of design. Mars, the planet of war, is also in Gemini in the sixth house. It is square Uranus. A maniacal worker, she was a slave driver who would work all day and all night without stopping, surviving on nothing but cigarettes and water. This intense work ethic did nothing to minimize her violent, hair-trigger temper (Moon opposite Mercury and Uranus, trine Jupiter and square Saturn-Pluto-Chiron). She was feared and respected. No one dared displease Mademoiselle.
With Jupiter-ruled Sagittarius on her twelfth Soul Choice House of walking the path, Gabrielle Coco Chanel was a courageous, fearless woman who triumphed in life despite being faced with many handicaps. Born into abject poverty, she learned to sew in the convent she was sent to after her mother died, a skill she turned into a career that brought her worldwide fame and vast wealth. As successful as she was in her career, however, her heart was broken over and over again in love. Neptune one degree from her fifth house of romantic love and the Soul Choice House of choosing the path, would ultimately result in disillusionment in love. Chanel had many affairs with wealthy and famous men, but the love of her life, the man who believed in her and provided her initial financial backing, Arthur “Boy” Capel, was killed in a car crash and taken from her forever. This was only one year after he married an aristocrat behind her back and broke her heart for the first time. She had many affairs with wealthy and talented men, including Igor Stravinsky, but the straw that broke the camel’s back for Mademoiselle Chanel was when she was arrested in 1944 for having a love affair with a Nazi officer. After this humiliation, Chanel closed her shop and lived in Switzerland for fifteen years.
With her Leo Sun-Venus and her Pisces Moon, she was far more sensitive that she ever let on. The woman who gave us the little black dress, bell bottoms, the Chanel suit, and the best-loved woman’s fragrance of all time, Chanel No. 5 (her lucky number), was a tender soul who hardened her heart to survive and put her soul into her work. Her timeless, elegant style is still imitated today. Woman today owe her a debt of gratitude for her courage, vision and indomitable spirit.
SOUL CHOICE HOUSES CASE STUDIES
Another courageous, highly self-directed soul whose ideas and personality influenced her generation and generations to come was the woman referred to by Time magazine as, “Our Lady of the Ladle,” Julia Child (Laura Jacobs, Vanity Fair, August 2009, p. 116 ). With her quirky, but delightful, persona and her whimsical falsetto (which was such a contrast with her imposing 6’2” physique), she charmed people everywhere with her popular TV show, The French Chef. She changed the way American women approached cooking. In the 1950’s, women either cooked the way their mothers and grandmothers taught them, or they learned from Betty Crocker. Julia changed all that. With her love of French culture and cuisine and her formidable persona, she raised the level of American cooking from utilitarian to epicurean. Her landmark, best-selling cookbook, Mastering the Art of French Cooking, written with Simone Beck and Louisette Bertholle, is a tribute to her vision, perseverance and organizational skills. Her soul choices are in complete harmony with a Grand Trine amongst three planets in the three Soul Choice Houses: Moon in Libra in the fifth Soul Choice House of choosing the path; trine Uranus in Aquarius in the ninth Soul Choice House of finding the path; trine Saturn in Gemini in the twelfth Soul Choice House of walking the path.
The soul choices are complex and ambitious with two planets in two signs (Mars in Virgo and the Moon in Libra) and the South Node of past karma in the fifth Soul Choice House of choosing the path. Besides aggressively pursuing (Mars) intellectual development (Mercury), a balance (Libra) between masculine and feminine roles is sought. There is also a soul choice to work out karmic issues having to do with women and/or a female family member, which brought great benefit to the many women who emulated her example, bought her famous cookbook, watched her TV show and learned about French cooking. Through her work, she rendered a great service (Virgo) to American women, revolutionizing the way they approached food and cooking. With her Leo Sun, she was a natural performer and charmed audiences everywhere with her cooking show and her effervescent personality.
The Moon is trine Uranus at zero-degrees Aquarius in the ninth Soul Choice House of finding the path. Like Chanel, she was a cultural revolutionary who changed the way women viewed cooking. Furthermore, no longer were women excluded from the culinary profession. She was one of the first woman chefs and must have caused considerable consternation amongst the conservative male chef instructors at Le Cordon Bleu where she learned to cook. The only American in the class, she joined forces with two of her classmates, Simone Beck and Louisette Bertholle to start teaching classes in French cooking for American women in Paris. They called their culinary school Les Trois Gourmandes and began a collaboration that would result in their 1961 ground-breaking cookbook, Mastering the Art of French Cooking.
Julia’s soul choices work together in almost musical cooperation. Uranus is trine Saturn in the twelfth Soul Choice House of walking the path. Saturn is in Gemini, the sign of two faces, which is symbolic of her two careers. Before she became an internationally known chef, she served her country in the O.S.S., the Office of Strategic Services, which was the predecessor to the CIA. Stationed in Ceylon and China, she met Paul Child, with whom a beautiful friendship would bloom into romantic and marital bliss. She pursued both her careers with Saturnian discipline. With Saturn in the twelfth house of secrets and hidden treasure, it is no surprise that she would have a career in a secret profession, then discover hidden treasure in her friendship with a fellow patriot, her future husband. Paul was ten years older than she, an echo of Saturn’s powerful influence on her life. He was also her teacher. It was Paul who introduced her to French food. Their first meal in France was a lunch consisting of bone dry, chilled Meursault and sole meuničre. Julia fell in love with French cooking that day and was on the path to her destiny.
Julia balanced and carried out her soul choices brilliantly, inspiring women to explore the wonders of the kitchen. Her famous cookbook is still in print and she is still an inspiration to women today, as is evidenced by the recent popular movie, Julia and Julia. Like Chanel, she changed the world and made it better. These two remarkable women were revolutionaries in their own way, enriching their own generations and influencing future generations with their vision and creativity.
SOUL CHOICE HOUSES CASE STUDIES
Bruce Lee is probably the most famous martial artist who ever lived. Before he came along, knowledge of the martial arts was limited to Japanese judo or karate. No one had ever heard of Chinese Kung Fu. It was a secret art, knowledge of which was forbidden to outsiders. Bruce Lee changed all that and introduced the Wing Chun style of Kung Fu to the Western world. In fact, he was considered for the starring role of Kwai Chang Caine in the popular TV show, Kung Fu, which ran from 1972-1975, but was passed over for David Carradine, who knew nothing about martial arts.
A traditional astrologer would consider his chart to be heavily afflicted. First, there are only three favorable aspects: a trine between the Sun and Pluto; a sextile between the Sun and Neptune; and a trine between Uranus and Neptune. Second, Lee’s Jupiter-Saturn conjunction is opposed by a Grand Scorpio Stellium of the Moon, Mercury, Venus and Mars, so all the personal planets are working against each other. Despite this dynamic, here is a case where free will nearly defeats fate. The soul choices are clear and totally focused, beginning with the Jupiter-Saturn conjunction in the fifth Soul Choice House of choosing the path. This soul chose power as its main raison d’etre, power over the self, the body, the world and fate. The fifth Soul Choice House of choosing the path is in the sign of Aries, the planet of war, which is ruled by Mars, planet of the warrior. Lee declared war on his body, his limitations, the martial arts establishment and the Hollywood and Hong Kong film establishments. Lee faced great opposition during his life: (1) opposition due to racial prejudice from (a) his own people, for his Mother was part German and also (b) from the Western establishment because he was considered too ethnic; (2) opposition from the powerful Hong Kong movie mogul Run Run Shaw who treated his stars like cattle and resented Lee’s independence; (3) opposition from the Hollywood film industry who refused to accept him because they didn’t think he was a marketable commodity; and (4) opposition from the Chinese martial arts establishment that jealously guarded its secrets and resented Lee’s embrace of the West and his pursuit of success in Hollywood. Despite all these oppositions, which are symbolized by his Jupiter-Saturn conjunction opposing his Scorpio Grand Stellium, he pioneered a new style of martial arts called Jeet Kune Do, the Way of the Intercepting Fist, which blended Kung Fu, judo, boxing and Korean and Japanese karate. Ultimately, he would repudiate his own creation because he felt it had too many limitations!
His main attribute in this cosmic struggle is revealed in the ninth Soul Choice House of finding the path. His ninth house is in Leo, sign of the actor and entertainer. Lee’s vehicle for getting his message across was the entertainment industry. Leo rules acting and the theatre, and Lee was in show business before he was even out of diapers as an infant in a movie, Tears of San Francisco (Atyeo, Don and Dennis, Felix, Bruce Lee, King of Kung Fu, p. 10). His father was a performer in the Cantonese Opera and made a good living as an actor. Bruce followed in his father’s footsteps. He had 20 roles as a child star in the Hong Kong film industry. His first hit was at age eight in Kid Cheung, which earned him the nickname, “The Little Dragon,” but his greatest dream was to be a Hollywood movie star. For many years, the best he could do was securing the role of Kato in the TV show, The Green Hornet, until the worldwide success of his first three karate movies, The Big Boss, Fist of Fury and Return of the Dragon. After these three blockbusters, the Hollywood film establishment took him seriously. Unfortunately, this earned Lee the enmity of the Hong Kong film establishment which considered him their property; and the enmity of the martial arts establishment in China, which resented Lee for commercializing the art and teaching its secrets to outsiders.
Oppositions dominated his personal life, too, from the constant challenges he faced by individuals who wanted to prove they could defeat the great Bruce Lee to oppositions from powerful entertainment establishment leaders. Lee harnessed these oppositions and turned them into opportunities to increase his personal power, using the power of the Sun which rules his ninth Soul Choice House of finding the path to do battle against any and all limitations. Like the precise mechanism of a Swiss watch, his Soul Choice Houses, along with their planets and rulers, meshed together in harmonious synchronicity to fulfill the soul choice of earthly power and spiritual exaltation. Crowning his soul choices is the Sun in Sagittarius (ruler of the ninth Soul Choice House of finding the path) on the Ascendant. He found the path and landed with the Sun rising, an ironic twist of fate for his Chinese Kung Fu would eclipse the Land of the Rising Sun’s judo and karate. Like Chanel, Lee’s twelfth Soul Choice House of walking the path is in Scorpio, indicating a hard life. He faced the challenges in his life like a warrior facing battle. His twelfth Soul Choice House of walking the path unfolds in the blinding light of the Sun which is in the most spiritual sign, Sagittarius, the sign of the philosopher. He walked the path of the seeker. So bright was his light that he may have been blind to the character flaws that he failed to conquer, his colossal Leo ego and his violent Scorpio temper. He challenged himself, the world and fate, but died suddenly in 1973 at the age of 32 on the eve of his greatest triumph, the premiere of the greatest martial arts movie ever made, Enter the Dragon, in which he starred and directed. He was cruelly cut him down in the prime of his life. There is still speculation about what caused his death and there always will be for he had so many enemies, and died so suddenly under mysterious circumstances.
Regardless of his personal flaws, he gave the western world a priceless gift in bringing the martial arts to the attention of thousands of men and women all over the world. Many people were enriched by his teachings and his personal example of excellence. Because of him, the martial arts became a way of life for many people who found in them an alternative to Western materialism. To the spirit of the great Bruce Lee who valiantly refused to accept any limitations, whether social, physical or mental, it would be appropriate to quote Han, his arch-enemy in Enter the Dragon: “You have our gratitude.” And our deepest respect.
SOUL CHOICE HOUSES CASE STUDIES
Another remarkable man who has always defied limitations is the living legend, Bob Dylan. In his 70 years so far on this Earth, he has taken delight in challenging authority and foiling fools. Although he invented the irreverent rock star persona that has been copied by so many who followed him, he began his long musical career as a folk singer, writing and performing the unforgettable songs that defined the 1960’s and 1970’s, like: “Mr. Tambourine Man,” “The Times They Are A-Changin,” “Don’t Think Twice, It’s Alright,” “Just Like a Woman,” “Like a Rolling Stone,” and the folk national anthem, “Blowing in the Wind.” Long before the punk rock movement of the 1980’s, he gave the finger in true punk style to the group of people who made him famous, the left-wing protest movement, by daring to play electric guitar at the 1965 Newport Folk Festival. This caused a scandal and he was booed off the stage, indignant and defiant.
Although he was not a martial artist like Bruce Lee, he had the same militant pioneer spirit that resulted in a revolution in popular music. Before Bob Dylan, pop songs were sugary, frothy three-minute ditties with little substance and certainly no serious message. Dylan’s hit songs were somber, angry intellectual compositions that challenged society and made people think. Like Bruce Lee, he had highly focused soul choices. Dylan has a Grand Taurus Stellium in the fifth Soul Choice House of choosing the path consisting of the Moon, Jupiter, Saturn and Uranus. In addition, his Gemini Sun is exactly on the cusp of the fifth and sixth houses, indicating two careers and tremendous energy directed towards work. The ruler of Dylan’s fifth house is Venus, which is widely conjunct the Sun in Gemini, indicating two careers, both in the arts. A concentration of planets in the sign Taurus is almost always an indication of artistic talent, particularly in the graphic arts. True to form, Dylan is a serious painter in addition to being a world-famous musician. One of his record album covers, Self Portrait, is an original painting and his graphic art work has been exhibited in museums all over the world. Dylan’s master soul choice is clearly to create, create, create and this he has done in Jupiterean abundance from his nearly 50 record albums to his books of drawings and paintings.
With respect to attributes, his ninth Soul Choice House of finding the path is in Virgo, which is ruled by Mercury, so intelligence, discrimination and hard work are indicated as the means to the end of abundant creativity. Residing in the ninth Soul Choice House is retrograde Neptune, planet of music, mysticism, illusion, delusion and higher love. Obviously, music has always been his primary modus operandi, augmented by writing, painting and acting. Neptune has five trines to the fifth house Grand Stellium, no wonder songs flowed from him like current from a wall socket. Virgo is the sign of service and he has served his muse faithfully for most of his 70 years. His brilliant song, ”Serve Somebody,” from Slow Train Coming perfectly expresses his understanding of the ideal of service. Neptune shares the ninth Soul Choice House of finding the path with the Moon’s North Node, indicating service to the Lords of Karma and symbolizing all the good he has done by challenging authority, questioning the morality of war and sneering at stupidity. The man is a national treasure who should have long ago been honored with the title of poet laureate, or at least with a Nobel Peace Prize.
The twelfth Soul Choice House of walking the path is in Sagittarius, which feeds back to its ruler, Jupiter, in the fifth Soul Choice House of choosing the path. Mr. Dylan epitomizes the Sagittarean qualities of idealism, wisdom, faith and hope. In this world that is often dark and stormy, he has always walked in the light and has always been a torch-bearer of enlightenment. He is totally unique and there will never be another man like him.
The preceding four case studies of remarkable cultural revolutionaries provide clear and colorful examples of the Soul Choice Houses theory. With the soul (and life) choices they made, Coco Chanel, Julia Child, Bruce Lee and Bob Dylan changed the world. The soul and life choices that you make could change the world, too, dear reader.
Sister Ray has been practicing natal astrology for four decades and would love to hear from you. Please visit her at www.sisterrayastrology.com.
Atyeo, Don and Dennis, Felix, Bruce Lee, King of Kung Fu, San Francisco, Straight Arrow Books, 1974.
Block, Alex Ben, The Legend of Bruce Lee, New York, Dell Publishing Co., Inc., 1974.
Charles-Roux, Edmonde, Chanel and her world, Friends, Fashion and Fame, New York, The Vendome Press, 2005.
Denisoff, R. Serge, Great Day Coming, Baltimore, Penguin Books Inc., 1973.
Douglas, Mark and Moore, Marcia, Reincarnation, Key to Immortality, York Cliffs, Maine, Arcane Publications, 1968.
Hamaker-Zondag, Karen, The Twelfth House, York Beach, Maine, Samuel Weiser, Inc., 1992.
Jacobs, Laura, “Our Lady of the Kitchen,” Vanity Fair, pp. 114-132, August, 2009.
Moore, Marcia, Hypersentience, New York, Crown Publishers, Inc., 1976.
Tucker, Jim B., M.D., Life Before Life, New York, St. Martin’s Press, 2005.
Birth data from AstroDataBank 4.0:
Coco Chanel: 8/19/1883, 16:00 LMT, Saumur, France
Julia Child: 8/15/1912, 23:30 PST, Pasadena, California
Bruce Lee: 11/27/1940, 7:12 PST, San Francisco, California
Bob Dylan: 5/24/1941, 21:05 CST, Duluth, Minnesota
Website illustrations by Dover Publications Royalty-Free Art
 The famous Dutch Jungian astrologer, Karen Hamaker-Zondag, discusses this in her book, The Twelfth House.