Reflections on Changes / 8th House

The 8th house in astrology traditionally represents death, inheritance and other people’s money.

This is the house of death and rebirth. Or in modern parlance, it is called the house of transformation, a much broader term, which includes death and rebirth.

The Nature of Transformation

Transformation is changing something so that it becomes better. Not saying here that the physical death which is painful to the person and his/her loved ones. Although it seems a necessary and unfortunate part of life, I would like to believe that there’s a higher purpose at work when one leaves the physical world. Very importantly, the ones left on Earth inevitably gets transformed with the death. Perhaps the death triggered a realization that life is short and one shall be grateful of one’s life.

For something to be transformed, the structure or probably even essence of something needs to change. The old practice of alchemy is to change lead into gold and to find an elixir of life. From my vague recollection of chemistry, all metals have a certain chemical structure. For metals, the molecules/atoms (??) are held together using ionic bonds. Different metals have different molecular structures. To change lead to gold therefore requires a lot of energy to break those bonds/structures.

As human beings, over time, things that we value, or simply, our attachments become part of those structure. These structures operate like the molecular structure of lead. To change our lives, we need to loosen or break those attachments so that we become lighter so that we can morph. It’s like ice transforming into water which then transforms into water vapour, where each state of water is lighter than the previous one. The energy to loosen, break, remove those attachments/bonds require tremendous energy, as you can imagine.

We can supply those energies ourselves. But it’s easier said than done. It requires tremendous willpower. Although there are “tricks” to aid us in it, perhaps by aligning what we are trying to achieve with the phases of the moon or by using crystals. Or, you can use scientific ways to break a habit, e.g. read “The Power of Habit” by Charles Duhigg. To summon energies within us to change ourselves and hence our lives requires a strong motivation to do so. Left to our own devices, there are few of us who would actively and consciously want to change our lives, especially if they seem to have been working fine (except those who are heavy on Pluto, Scorpio and Uranus, I imagine).

But life never remains static – if it does, we would still be a baby or have the mind of a baby. Our current lives may no longer “work” for us. As mentioned earlier, we could take the change ourselves. If not, we could wait for external circumstances i.e. things to happen to us, to impel us to change. Note that I used “impel” instead of “compel”. I’d like to think that we all have free will and we have choices when it comes to our lives. Usually, those circumstances that arise are not nice and pleasant stuff. If they are, we won’t take notice of them and pay attention to them. No, those events that happen to us tends to be deep, dark stuff that seems to assault or even rape our lives of what we value. Powerful stuff, stuff that possibly cause us grief, anguish, sleepless nights, discomfort, tension, frustration within us so that we are impelled to make the change.

Certainly, even when the push comes to shove, we could still resist what’s thrown at us. We struggle and state “Yes, my life is shitty. But no, I shall continue with what I have been doing. Thank you!” (this seems especially relevant to those high in fixed modality in their charts). So, you remain in that little spot of yours, sometimes when others, including your loved ones have moved on. But hell, you rather stick to what is familiar to you, despite the fact that the familiar doesn’t quite meet your needs anymore. It’s like me who insists on wearing my old size 30 jeans when they don’t quite fit after my weight gain. (and oh God, it’s terribly uncomfortable!)

I’d like to think that we evolve to a higher state (whatever that means) over time. I suppose it’s scientific too. We all came from amoeba if I understand evolution correctly, or did we come from monkeys? Anyhow, if the amoebas or apes didn’t evolve, I wouldn’t be writing this post now.

That was a huge piece of reflection on transformation. What is crucial as part of transformation is the rebirth. It’s not just a part of you dying which can be a very painful experience. From death, we get resurrected and live again. Here’s some of my personal examples in my life which I think described the crucial transformations in my life:

  • I quit my course in hospitality management when I was a wee teen after 6 months and went back to a “junior college” to do a GCE A Levels

  • I quit my job in Singapore and went to work in Bermuda

  • I quit my job in Bermuda, lived in Mexico and then “settled down” in Australia

  • After a mere 4-5 months in Australia, I decided that Australia wasn’t for me and went back home

  • I accepted a job in Ireland.

  • I am doing astrology now which is my passion.

The above moves seem simple enough on paper. But I tell you, I had gone through quite a fair bit emotionally when I decided to make each move. For each change requires me to give up or let go of the past and step into the future which is a big question mark. So, I truly empathize with you if you are on the brink of a change in your life and are paralyzed from fear of the big unknown future. But, I suppose you just have to trust, even when your mind says “How can you be darn sure?” and make the leap of faith. This definition of faith in the bible is very insightful to me “Now faith is confidence in what we hope for and assurance about what we do not see.” We can’t use my physical senses when it comes to the future. We can use our logical thinking (heavens forbid that I ask you to stop thinking about your future). But at some point in time, you have to act on your thoughts. The action comes from being confident in what you hope for. Have a little faith. You don’t need huge faith, just the size of a mustard seed will do.

On Other People’s Money

The eight house intrinsically refers to death or transformation. But its derived meaning is other people’s money as it’s the second house from the seventh house, the house of relationships/other people. This includes things like inheritance, your life and business partner’s finances, money or loans from the bank, taxes (which is the government’s money).

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