The Second House
The second house is the first succedent house. Along with the others, the fifth, eighth and eleventh, it has the character of fixity or stability. These houses pertain to internal psychological development.
Traditionally, the second house symbolizes possessions, valuables, money as earned income, and all the things we hold on to because they represent safety and security.
It represents the basic necessities: a roof over our heads, food on the table, fresh air and water. In addition, it is the area of life where we experience sensual gratification, where we enjoy the things of the five senses.
It represents our attitudes toward how we allow ourselves to experience physical, bodily pleasure. Many people are cut off from allowing themselves to enjoy physical pleasure and so tend to sublimate a lot of their sensuality and sense gratification into money.
The sign on the second house cusp shows fundamental values and attitudes toward sensuality, and possessions that are valued security. Planets in the second further emphasize what needs the person feels and how she or he may go about fulfilling them. It represents talents and skills by which we may earn income.
For example, Pisces on the second may feel secure with surrender and sacrifice, or he feels secure with having nothing. There is a sense of safety in feeling helpless and at the mercy of the universe. “I can let go and enjoy all my senses, the first five as well as the intuitive ones, in every way, and not be attached to any one thing.” With Virgo on the second, Jupiter tenanting it, the person would be physically quite sensual, capable of experiencing a great variety of pleasures and need sensual gratification on a regular schedule to feel comfortable and secure.
All too often, sensuality is allowed only narrow avenues of experience; for instance, money, buying things, sex and food. We have five senses: smell, taste, sight, touch and hearing. They all need to be satisfied. When some are not honored, it leads to addictions in the areas that are allowed. Do you really need another ice cream? Would not listening to beautiful music, enjoying the sights, sounds and scents of nature by taking a walk in the park or the country bring as much comfort and be less fattening? Is it really sex you want? What about simply being touched caressed and held? A massage, a soak in a warm bath with scented oil and incense, soft candle light and music may be what you need to make you feel good and to relax.
When cardinal signs fall on the second, we set goals and go out after the security we want. Fixed signs here frequently correlate with well-developed talents and skills upon which we rely to the exclusion of others, the “specialist.” The mutable signs are flexible and multi-talented. This can be the “jack of all trades and master of none.” Fire signs experience pleasure through doing, playing, creating. Air signs enjoy the pleasures of the mind; communication is a valuable commodity. Water signs need to feel emotions deeply and an emotional sense of safety often is confused with financial security. “Take care of me if you love me.” Earth signs are the most comfortable with practical values and at ease with their sensuality.
Look to the ruler of the second house, its sign placement, house and aspects, to know more about a person’s values, sensual needs and methods of creating security for himself.
Using examples of our famous Taurus people, we can see that Muktananda, with Gemini on the second and Mercury in the first aspecting a Leo Jupiter, found it in personally communicating his consciousness of God. He wrote many books about his spiritual experiences.
Kriyananda has Cancer on the second with Moon conjunct Neptune in Leo making hard aspects to his Sun, Saturn and Jupiter. His sensual side flows into musical composition, creating songs of a religious, uplifting nature; he founded a community to have a secure home with like-minded others where he could be the “daddy.”
Tagore had Taurus on the second with Venus conjunct Pluto in Taurus in the first house trining Saturn in Virgo in the fifth. He was an incredibly gifted and talented person, accomplished in several arts, and his own being was the source of his security.
Teilhard de Chardin, with Cancer on the second and the Moon in Gemini on the Ascendant, found his security first in the church (Moon), later in his own illuminated and very fertile mind.
About the author:
Eleanor Buckwalter has studied, practiced and taught astrology in Los Altos, CA for more than twenty-five years, including three years with the late Richard Idemon, a psychological astrologer. Her primary astrological focus of interest is parent-child relationships and family dynamics.