The 11th House is a slightly difficult house to explain. It shares something in common with the 12th House in that way. But, while the 12th House is just elusive and transcendent, the 11th House is just… strange. It’s totally unpredictable. You never know what’s going to happen in the 11th House of your chart, represented by the sign on your 11th House cusp and/or the planets you possibly have in your 11th House. This is where you can truly expect the unexpected. It’s why it’s ruled by the sign of Aquarius and the planet Uranus. There’s a really crazy, out-there energy to this sector of the birth chart but it’s also where genius and change and tolerance happens.
I think the best way to understand the 11th House is to see it as a reaction to the 10th House. The 10th House/Midheaven represents your life goals, your ambitions, what you really want to achieve in the world. We make projected plans, in some sort of way, through whatever’s in our 10th House. But, guess what? The 11th House doesn’t give a damn about your plans. This is the house that doesn’t make plans. It just lets things happen. Not in the spiritual state of surrender of the 12th. It’s more so in the way of not only accepting chaos and oddness but embracing it. That’s why there’s a spirit of rebellion or defiance in your 11th House. But, it doesn’t always mean your rebellion against other people’s plans. Sometimes, it’s the rebellion of others against your plans.
After all, we think we’re the boss when it comes to our Midheaven. There’s always a certain agenda through this placement and the older we get, the more we’ll assert this agenda with authority. But, not everyone is going to listen to us or agree with us. This is often one of the unexpected elements of the 11th House: it’s what happens when we face dissent or disapproval of some kind. We never really know what people are going to think of what we have to offer. We also never know, in any sort of group setting, just how all of our heads are going to come together. And this can bring a chaos that could possibly throw off whatever structure our Midheaven is aiming for. If the Midheaven sits at the top of our chart, gazing down on the world it’s influencing, the 11th House represents when we need to come from off of our throne and really engage with the people.
I don’t agree with the 11th being described as “the house of your hopes and dreams.” I think that dreaming is more of a 12th House specialty and hope is definitely the 9th House’s territory. But, I do believe that you can’t fully get anywhere in the world without your 11th House. Your Midheaven is what you want to accomplish and the 11th is how you’re going to have to collaborate with other people in order to achieve it. After all, nothing is accomplished while flying solo. Every success comes from team effort and that’s what this house is about. You can’t control these collaborations, either. You just have to be willing to be open to whatever everyone else is bringing to the table. If you are, then you might find yourself adjusting your goals (Midheaven) because you just got some really good ideas from others (11th House) that you never thought of before.
Look to the sign and/or planets here to figure this out. Libra in the 11th House means that you have to collaborate with others tactfully, thoughtfully taking their ideas into consideration. The Sun in the 11th House means that you truly identify with being a collaborator, which is going to make you gravitate toward these group situations. This is why the 11th House is about “groups.” It’s about how a bunch of like-minded people come together to achieve a common goal. And who knows what could happen? Who knows what brilliant brainstorming can occur when all of these people join forces, moving past their individual aims to work together on something bigger than themselves?
You also constantly hear “friendship” when the 11th House is talked about. But, I don’t believe that your BFF’s are going to be reflected by your 11th. In my opinion, a person’s closest, truest friends are reflected by their 7th House/Descendant. This is the relationship house and that doesn’t just mean romance. Our 7th House also describes the qualities we want in good friends. The 11th House, meanwhile, is about sporadic, arm’s-length friendships (reflecting the affable detachment of ruling sign Aquarius). These aren’t personal relationships. These are the people who you’re really cool with but who you don’t feel overly connected to. Maybe you work with them or have the same occupation or just know the same people. They’re what you could call “associates” or “acquaintances.” This is also where the networking side of the 11th House comes in. When you’re friendly with someone but don’t need to regularly speak to them, your 11th House is at play.
My 11th House is in Sagittarius. Those with Sagittarius on the 11th House cusp will make a lot of these at-a-distance social connections. I can network really easily and spread myself around. But, I’m quick to move on to another “group”, especially if the current one becomes stagnant. Sagittarius is freedom-seeking and eager to move forward to the next chapter. So, I restlessly network, comfortable with finding associates and then finding new ones, often growing beyond the old ones. However, when it comes to my actual friendships, my Cancer Descendant and Leo Sun in the 7th make me very attached. I get my identity (Sun) here, so my best friends are my life, in many ways. With casual acquaintances, I seek a lot more breathing room, which allows me to be very easygoing and highly positive when collaborating in groups because they never weigh me down.
If you have the Moon in the 11th, you might feel an irrational push-pull with acquaintances in that you need that space from them but you also find a lot of emotional security from these relationships. That could make you emotionally act out, sometimes, in groups. Is Aries in the 11th? You’re very competitive and assertive when you socially connect with other people. Those with this placement never forget about the self-serving side of networking, which isn’t always a bad thing. The people we connect with through our 11th House, in some way or another, will abruptly come into our life and most likely leave it abruptly. And since this is the house of detachment, we don’t really have a problem with it. That’s why I don’t like seeing this as the “friendship house.” We’re very affected if the relationship (7th House) with our good friend ends. When things with an associate ends, we usually just say, “Meh”, and move on to other associates with no hard feelings (unless, again, you have Cancer or the Moon in the 11th; then things get more complicated).
Because of this, if something’s transiting your 11th House, don’t expect significant, close friendships to be that affected. Expect social connections, as a whole, to be affected. Saturn’s currently transiting my 11th House and it’s bringing this stronger awareness to networking and collaborating, as well as a mature acceptance of how these acquaintances can come and go. And if you actually have Saturn in the 11th House, then this is your life. It’s also making me feel both more inventive and more aware of the challenges that come with trying out my inventions. Another element of the 11th House’s unpredictability is how it electrifies us and gives us the brilliant ideas that we can hopefully use to contribute to various groups or causes. But, we might think it’s brilliant. Other people? It can be a different story, which is where the alienation of the 11th House comes in. We can feel ahead of other people here and like the misfit in the group because of it.
Everyone has an 11th House and even if it’s empty, you still feel it and live with it. And it’s the reason why everyone feels misunderstood, at some time or another. It doesn’t matter if you actually feel like a complete weirdo (which is the classic archetype for the 11th) or if you just have ideas about something that happen to differ from everyone else’s or if you just somehow don’t fully fit into the group because of something about you. You’re going to get that sense of being one of those things that’s not like the other in this house. But, hopefully, this is only something that’s going to give you a greater tolerance for other people’s differences: different opinions, beliefs, personality traits, classifications, etc. If you’re making the most out of your 11th, it will open your mind, preparing you for the nonjudgmental empathy of the 12th.
People with planets in their 11th experience this outcast status on a more powerful level. As an 11th House person, no matter where you go, you feel like you stick out like a sore thumb. But, this is something that only fuels your genius. And every individual with a pronounced 11th House has a definite stroke of genius to them. Yes, it’s an overused word and no, it doesn’t have to mean a high IQ. This brilliance just comes from the 11th House person’s ability to twist and turn anything into something original, unprecedented, or not thought of before. It’s why they’re so inventive and, okay, rather odd and eccentric. 11th House people constantly do and say things that make you go, “What?” They startle us and shock us, much like lightning-quick Uranus. And they’re so exciting because they’re so random and have such a high tolerance for randomness.
For all of us, things get very random in the 11th. Whatever is in this house describes the things that occur in your life without much rhyme or reason. If you have Sagittarius in the 11th, like me, your life will be full of sudden accidents. They can be messy accidents, sometimes. But, more often than not, I constantly experience happy accidents that come out of nowhere. And even the bad accidents eventually turn out in my favor. Whenever I don’t have expectations of something going well, that’s when it turns out amazingly, making me feel lucky or blessed. However, don’t forget that the 11th House will rebel against our expectations if they’re constricting. So, when I approach things with a rigid agenda of the situation turning out in my favor, they don’t. Then, things feel all screwed and make me feel unlucky until I forget about trying to get lucky and then I get lucky again.
The 11th House can drive you crazy, in that way, and it sort of likes doing it. Another interesting thing I find about this house is that it represents our relationship with technology. We are truly in an 11th House age, after all (aka the Age of Aquarius, which rules the 11th). So, it makes sense. I think it’s a very modern perspective that astrologers who were prevalent before the late 90’s/early 00’s didn’t have the chance to think about. Now, as us 21st century astrologers can tell you, your relationship with the tech-world seriously defines your everyday life. And the 11th House tells you how this relationship works and what chaos comes into your life because of it.
I’m very clumsy and reckless with my gadgets, thanks to Sagittarius in the 11th. I constantly drop my phone and I haven’t had the same laptop for more than a year or so because I always mess it up somehow. I’m never cautious with these things. Thankfully, the situation usually turns itself around. But, at the same time, it does seem like they almost want to screw up. Technological gadgets do feel like they have a mind of their own. Can’t you just sometimes feel your computer intentionally not doing what you want it to do? So, this is the 11th House conundrum, too. Taurus in the 11th House people have to develop a very patient relationship with technology, for example, because it feels like every technological thing they touch begins moving very slowly.
I would say those with a strong 11th House have a powerful way with technology but it won’t always be the case. A lot of these people are amazingly tech-savvy, while some of them go the total opposite route and just can’t even deal with complicated technology. That’s often the case if Saturn or Pluto is ruling or in the 11th, causing some control issues in this area of life. And the wayward will of tech gadgets just compel them to rebel against these devices themselves. After all, 11th House people almost always need something to rebel against.