So what happens when our inner warrior is hidden away in the 12th house? This is an interesting placement for Mars. The 12th house is the area of life associated with the unconscious, spirituality, dreams. It is also the stuff we push away and don’t want to think about. It’s known as the house of self-undoing as things that are repressed eventually bubble up through the unconscious and can come out at the least opportune times. When we aren’t aware of why we act the way we do, this can have a detrimental effect on our lives and relationships.
With Mars in the 12th house, our drive, will, motivation and fighting instinct is secreted away in a very private area of the chart. Typically, planets in the 12th house can be given up for a greater good. In a study done by Gauquelin, it was noted that many sports men and woman had this placement. If we think of Mars as energy, your competitive side go-get-it side, then this makes sense because there is often a feeling with sport that what you are doing is for your team or for your country. You give over your power for a greater aim than simply your own.
This is also the house of isolation, so you may be drawn to solitary pursuits or pastimes like running for example. Sometimes people with a 12th house Mars are very self-driven behind the scenes so can be strongly motivated to simply ‘do their own thing’. But this is private and for them alone and they may not like others interfering.
Some with Mars in the 12th house fight for a cause. The 12th house is the house of hospitals and institutions and can relate to those who are lost and forgotten in society. Mars here may have an urge to help, to DO something. Sometimes, because this is the house indicating no boundaries and is therefore limitless, you may never know when to stop. You may always feel the need to be doing something and yet at the same time feel whatever you do is never enough.
Because Mars is connected to your physical energy levels and strength, for some this placement can indicate you need more rest than others. Maybe you are the kind of person who is physically drained when around too many other people. Some time alone will help to re-charge your batteries.
You may end up fighting everybody else’s battles other than you own. Your own anger and frustration can be bottled up by this placement. Anger can be displaced. In fighting for someone or something else, maybe you don’t look at or even see your own anger.
This placement can indicate someone who doesn’t like to show their anger – maybe when they were little they were told ‘it’s not nice’. Perhaps you are submissive, agreeable yet secretly you’re working hard to get to the top and beat them at their own game. Because the 12th house can represent the womb before birth, sometimes it can indicate that your mother found the pregnancy with you challenging. Maybe you kicked hard! Perhaps you don’t show you’re anger because you were frightened into keeping it hidden. Maybe you were bullied.
You may be afraid of your own anger. Perhaps you’re scared that if you show your anger, if you get into it – you’ll never stop. It can feel like imploding. You may be the kind of person to rage in silence. You may have dreams of fighting or battles or perhaps angry thoughts come to you seemingly without reason. In extreme situations, where Mars has been denied altogether, Mars turns the battle on himself so self-destructive anger and self harm can result. Mars in the 12th can be the poster child of being your own worst enemy.
Maybe you run from confrontations. Maybe you feel like there’s a hidden or invisible enemy. Perhaps you are an escapist. Maybe you’re inclined to jump ship when the going gets tough. Perhaps it’s just that you feel like it’s not worth fighting for. The challenge with this placement is that sometimes you can feel defeated before you ever start. It’s a ‘what’s the point’ aspect. You may have a feeling that you are ineffectual or you just can’t assert yourself.
Because Mars is connected to your desires and sexual attraction, you may find it difficult to openly pursue those you are attracted to. Secret desires may be unrequited or perhaps you are drawn to those who are unobtainable. Perhaps you just find it hard to ask for what you want from a partner. Sometimes relationships can trigger psychological complexes. This can be damaging or healing depending on how it is handled. Some people with Mars here may be celibate. On the plus side, Mars in the 12th house can indicate that sex is a spiritual experience, perfect for investigating tantric practices.
Look to the aspects that Mars makes in your chart. If they are positive, it may show that one of your karmic lessons in this life is to use your Mars for others. In a past life you may have honed your Martian energy – maybe you were strong and powerful yet kind and compassionate. Maybe you had mastered your body through martial arts or athleticism. Perhaps you were a natural leader and you bring that quality into your current life. Mars in the 12th can be on a mission. You are called to take action on those things that promote peace and connection between all things. Mars here could be said to be a fight for peace.
With challenging aspects, maybe in a past life, there were unwise actions or problems with anger and competitiveness, so in this life, it’s about learning to use the energy of Mars more effectively both for yourself an others. It may be about learning how to handle anger on a personal level, dealing with unresolved anger and ultimately forgiving yourself.
Working at its best, Mars in the 12th can indicate you are kind, compassionate and peaceful yet willing to challenge people and situations that seek to put others down. You are self-motivated and able to assert yourself without fear. As this can be a very creative house, Mars here may motivate you to become the quiet but talented artist or musician.
The positive side of Mars in the 12th house is that here he is in spiritual warrior. Where Mars is in the chart, he likes to feel strong. He shows something we want and where we tend to actively go out and get it. In the 12th house, this can be the active pursuit of the soul and a desire to work on your spiritual life. Your dream life may be very active too so it can be helpful to keep a dream diary. You have all this energy deep inside of you to draw upon. If you follow a healing path, you may have a very high perception of other people’s energy levels. Mars here can call you to initiate your own healing quest. When you feel stuck and unmotivated, an act of kindness for someone else may help to get you started again.
Natal Mars in the 12th House – Celebrity Examples
Nicole Kidman – Mars in Libra
“I would rather be tough on myself than have other people be tough on me.”
Britney Spears – Mars in Virgo
“I’m not at the point where I’d feel safe in a house alone. I would be really scared. I’m the kind of person that when I get up to go use the bathroom I have this big long hallway, and I just know someone’s going to jump out and get me.”
Heath Ledger – Mars in Pisces
“I like to do something I fear.”
(Note Heath Ledger passed away due to drug abuse)
Johnny Cash – Mars in Pisces
“I’m very shy really. I spend a lot of time in my room alone reading or writing or watching television.”
(Note – also battled issues with drugs and alcohol)
Maria Montessori – Mars in Cancer
“If help and salvation are to come, they can only come from the children, for the children are the makers of men.”