Eros brings beauty, meaning and divinity into our lives. It comes to us through a very particular epiphany, a passionate inspiration present in a particular lover, teacher, melody, or landscape. We long to follow it always. But this is not the whole story. For Eros also brings us obsessions, cruelty, abandonment, and betrayal. It may come through anguish…” 39
--Harriet Eisman The asteroid Eros, like any planet in the astrological chart, represents a basic human need, drive or impulse. As Mars symbolizes the drive or urge towards assertiveness, action and direction, Eros symbolizes the urge towards erotic love and the transformations offered by this experience. The PLANETS represent the nature of an inherent impelling force in us, as well as a piece of our own soul, and Eros’s impulsion is towards union of a particular kind.
The SIGNS indicates how the needs and drives of the planets will express. Just as Mars in Leo may have a dramatic flare and fixedness to its drive to take action, so Eros in Leo would have a flamboyant spark in its approach to erotic love. The signs describe the way a need functions.
The HOUSES in turn represent areas of life, inner and outer. They symbolize the environment where the need or drive is acting out. The ruler on the house cups and the sign or signs contained in the house suggest the climate found in that environment. Any planets residing in a given house indicates that the needs and drives implied by them tend to operate strongly in that area of life. Entering or doing that area of life will evoke the needs and drives of the planets found there. We meet those planets, and the archetypal characters they symbolize, in that area of life.
Where Eros is by house indicates the environment, people or experiences that the god of love affiliates with. Howard Sasportas, in his book The Twelve Houses, states:
Any planet or sign in a house always suggests the most natural way to unfold the life plan in the area of life the house represents.40 The system of derivative houses41 may also help elucidate experiences linked with the Eros house positions and is applied to the following cookbook descriptions. The derivative approach is controversial: some astrologers use it with impunity; other authors feel it is only useful in Horary charts. As with the house systems, each individual must experiment and use what they find works best.
The following cookbook style interpretation of Eros through the houses focus mainly on natal positions although they operate for positions by transit or progression as well. A much more detailed working of Eros through the houses and by transit and progression can be studied in the soon to be released text: Asteroid 433 Eros: The Astrology of Love
Eros in the First House
And as concerning reality…the impression we get of it is not the same as the perception.42
When Eros resides in the first house of the natal chart, it gains additional significance. This is especially true if it is found within ten degrees either side of the Ascendant. Here Eros takes on first house importance adding his flavor to the sign or signs and any other planets found there.
In this position, Eros contributes towards the general approach to life. It may indicate how plans are initiated, action taken or dilemmas worked out. It may not mean that we have an erotic approach to initiation, but that we tend to encounter the erotic when taking action or presenting ourselves to the world.
Eros in the Second
May I ask…whether you inherited most of your possessions or acquired them yourself?43
The second house traditionally rules money, values, resources and innate capabilities. It has a lot to do with valuing our self as a unique individual and can give indications of tangible longings, desires and aspirations.
People with Eros in the second house may value the erotic union as a resource or reserve. An erotic manner may reside with them comfortably like an inborn perception of what they are worth, what they deem estimable. This may actualize as a subtle undertone in some, or a brash and even overbearing urgency in others.
Eros in the Third House
I'm skilled at introducing new ideas every time out, each one different from the other and all of them good.44
The third house traditionally deals with ideas, communication, learning, short journeys and siblings. It describes the early environment and local community, left brain activity or the rational mind, and our attitude to leaning and knowledge in general. If consciousness is, as Richard Idemon used to say, “what we think and what we think we think,” the third house is the arena of that consciousness. It is the way in which we think we perceive the environment.
When Eros resides in the third house, communication itself can become an erotic experience. The written and expressed word, the transmission of information and the act of learning or teaching may all create an experience of erotic transformation for those involved. These can be people who really enjoy writing letters, keeping a diary or journal or getting up and making a speech.
Eros in the Fourth House
Now after my long day's labour sloping towards an evening of repose, has relaxed my energies by suggesting the charms of family life. 45
--Cicero The forth house is the domain of the family, emotional security and sense of belonging at the very roots of our being. Astrologer Joanne Wickenburg46 says, if the Ascendant is WHO you are, the IC, and subsequent fourth house, is WHAT you are. Often it also represents what we like to hide from others.
This house symbolizes the external home, the family emotional inheritance, a parent,47 domestic affairs and the country of origin. When Eros is found in this house the erotic links closely together with experiences of home and family. Eros loves to hide in the fourth house and there may be a secretive approach to erotic love.