During the course of my week as a professional astrologer, I am often asked about whether I see death in a chart. Here are a few pointers that I consider, however, each case is distinct and must be taken as a whole. It is not enough to look at the natal chart – you need to take into account the transits and the progressions. Sometimes death can be seen in a chart, but it is not necessarily physical death – it can mean the end of an old life and the opening up of a new life.
The eighth house in the natal chart rules all things usually hidden, sex, death, and taxes. Since it rules "other people’s money" it has rulership over inheritance, insurance, and joint monies between spouses and/or business partners. If there are no planets in your natal eighth house, you look to the ruler of the cusp of the 8th house and note its condition by aspect, sign, and house placement in your chart.
If the Sun and Moon have challenging aspects with Mars, Saturn, Uranus, or Pluto, there may be a short life. Others with less challenging aspects will have a life of medium length. A well aspected Saturn is an indicator of a long life. But there have to be other supporting aspects to fulfill this promise. It is important to remember that length of a life does not necessarily correlate soul advancement. Some people start out awkward and crusty and just get more awkward and crustier with age!
Before the three outer planets, Uranus, Neptune, and Pluto were discovered, Saturn was the indicator of death. Saturn constricts and restrains. Saturn rules the religions that are full of a lot of "Thou shalt nots..."
Saturn slows down any process, especially the process of the use of energy by your physical body. Therefore if Saturn is involved, it can indicate a slow death due to a long illness. The soul usually has time to prepare for the exit. This is normally an expected death, therefore the native has time to say good-bye and to better prepare for the soul’s journey. What sign Saturn is in your natal chart indicated what part of the body is the weakest. The parts of the body that rule the signs in square and opposition to your natal Saturn will also cause health problems. The movement of the planets through the sky and how they aspect the planets in your natal chart are very important in matters of health.
Mars having challenging aspects in a chart can indicate accidents and wounds by gunfire, knives, or any sharp instrument. Mars is most dangerous when in difficult aspect (conjunct, square, or opposition) to Uranus. Uranus is sudden events, like lightning striking. Uranus is unexpected and often involves automobiles, planes and trains. The soul will exit the body very quickly and suddenly when Uranus is involved.
Neptune with difficult aspects can indicate alcoholism or damage by drugs. Neptune is associated with a slowly wasting disease or condition. It can indicate the wrong medicine given by a doctor. It is the planet associated with the sea, therefore death by drowning. Neptune is also prominently aspected during earthquakes.
Please note, this is not a definitive list, and each case must always be examined on its own merit.