Parashara’s Encyclopedic Scripture of Astrology
The Brihat Parashara Hora Shastra
Chapter 13, Verse 11
“The Tenth House”
raajyaM caakaasha-vRittiM ca
maanaM caiva pitus-tathaa.
WORD FOR WORD TRANSLITERATION
raajyaM – sovereignty, lordship, kingliness; ca – and; aakaasha – open space, out in the open; vRittiM – choices, selections, borders; ca – and; maanaM – what is held in the mind: ego, honor, pride, prestige; ca – and; eva – certainly pituh – father, the provider of food; tathaa – thus; pravaasasya – blown to distant places, living away from home; RiNasya – what has flown away, debt; api – even; vyoma-sthaanaan – the house of the sky; niriikShaNam – should examine.
The “House of the Sky” [10th House] primarily reveals one’s chosen public role (“Career”) and the level of sovereignty and prestige one attains thereby. It also describes the father, and can even describe one’s debts and the likelihood of living far away from “home.”
The great sage Parashara calls the 10th House “The Sky House” because it exists in the highest part of the sky, more or less directly above our heads. It is thus the polar opposite of the 4th House – which was in the deepest part of the sky hidden under the ground beneath our feet. Most of the meanings of the 10th House derive from this basic fact that it is the polar opposite of the 4th House. Keep that in mind as you continue reading.
Prestige & Ego (Maana)
The 10th House describes the person out in the open – fully visible in public. This is the opposite of the 4th House, which describes the person in private, and their internal emotional realities. The main difference between the person you are in private and the person you are in public is that in public you fake a lot of things so that other people like you. In private you are true to yourself, but in public you compromise yourself and conform to other people. Why? So that you gain their respect!
So the main word the great sage uses to define the 10th House is “maana” – the prestige, honor, and respect one gets in public. This Sanskrit word almost always has a negative connotation, a lot like our English word “ego.” The 10th House describes a person’s “ego” – not in the sense of their true inner identity – but in the false, assumed, costume-like ego that one adorns in order to operate profitably (or at least painlessly) in the public world.
It is therefore the house of ahamkara – the “false ego.” Has anyone ever asked you in anger, “just who do you think you are!?” If so, you could answer them by simply describing your 10th House.
The degree of respect, prestige, “fame”, and “ego” one receives from the public is the domain of the 10th House.
Career – Choice of Public Role (Aakaasha-vritti)
Since the 10th House is up in the most public and visible area of the sky, the sage calls it aakaasha-vritti – “the border of space.” The word vritti equally refers to “borders” as it does to “choices.” So there is double meaning in this Sanskrit phrase. It indicates what one prefers to be out in the visible world. The 10th House defines the role one chooses to play in society, and therefore it has become famous even with amateur astrologers as the “House of Career.”
The sage previously pointed to the 7th House as the indicator of how one interacts with other people. So, to some extent the 7th House shows our ability to trade and be mercantile. But it is the 10th House which clearly defines the role one chooses to play in the public world – which is the real definition of “career.”
Often the 6th House is brought up when considering work and career. This is because the 6th House can indicate the nature of services performed to others, and can therefore relate to employment. However it is important to sort out what is primary and what is secondary in astrology so that one doesn’t interpret secondary factors as being of equal or greater importance to primary factors. The 10th House and the 10th House alone is the primary indicator of the career one chooses. Additional secondary characteristics of ones trade (seen in the 7th House) and employment (seen in the 6th House) supplement this primary information.
Since the 10th House is physically higher in the sky than any other house, it is like the sovereign king who stands above all the citizens. So, examine the 10th House of a horoscope to understand the areas and extent to which a person can stand above others as a self-sufficient authority commanding honor and respect, a source of guidance and protection to others.
There is confusion amongst astrologers over which house represents the father. Some say the 9th House, while others point to the 10th. The sage, Parashara, here expresses his opinion that the 10th House, not the 9th, is the main place in which we see and understand the father. Since the 10th House is the polar opposite of the 4th House, which represents the mother, it makes perfect sense that the 10th House should represent the father.
The sage uses the word pituh to refer to “father.” This Sanskrit word is closely connected to the root word for “food.” Therefore it describes the father as the person who supplies the family with food. In other words, as we say in English, it is the father in the role of the “bread-winner.”
Doubtlessly fathers are important in other respects as well. In some ways the father can operate as the person who plays a big role in helping the child establish his or her connection to morality. Thus in some cultural settings, the 9th House can give additional information about the father in this specific role, but the main and primary location of the Father, in Parashara’s opinion, is clearly the 10th House and nowhere else.
Distant Places (Pravaasasya)
The topics mentioned thus far are the primary themes of the 10th House. Now the sage will mention some secondary characteristics.
The 4th House described our roots: our home and kin. Being that the 10th House is the opposite, it describes not our homeland but far off and distant places. The sage uses the word pravaasa which implies being blown away by the wind to a far off destination, like the seed of a dandelion. This imagery is very fitting for the house that encompasses the wild open sky above our heads, full of blowing wind.
Most astrologers consider the 12th House to represent foreign places – but Parashara does not. This is not to say that the 12th House does not pertain to foreign places. What it does say is that the 12th House does not primarily pertain to them. By extension of the 12th Houses qualities, it affects a person’s relationship to distant lands. But the 10th House is especially noted here as being even more connected to residing in foreign lands.
Debt is another topic astrologers usually ascribe to the 12th House, but which Parashara rather surprising says is also an issue of the 10th House! The 12th House deals with vyaaya which means “loss” or “renunciation” and therefore by extension it indicates expenses and thus by another level of extension, debts. The 12th House shows how you lose your money, how you spend it. It does not necessarily or directly show the debts you acquire as a result. This is a rather prevalent misconception among all sorts of astrologers.
The 10th House, however, is highly relevant to debt, equally if not more so than the 12th! This makes perfect sense because the 10th House is the polar opposite of the 4th House – which described our niddhi or “safely deposited treasure.” The opposite of safely deposited treasure is, simply put, “debt.”
Literally, the word rinasya refers to things that have flown off and been blown away. Again showing the impact the windy open sky of the 10th house has in giving it the ability to scatter things far and wide.
– Vic DiCara
©2010 Vic DiCara – All Rights Reserved.