Understanding the elements: fire, earth, air, water is foundational to understanding the zodiac signs. This is the third in a series of posts that looks at the relationship between elements and houses in your chart.
The earth signs are Taurus, Virgo, and Capricorn. Let’s take a quick look at what set of houses they rule in your chart.
With an equal house chart, each house cusp is ruled by a sign at the same degrees and minutes as the ascendant. Each house and sign are fully represented.
If you have an air rising sign (Gemini, Libra, Aquarius) then your earth (2, 6, 10) houses are ruled by water.
Look at your chart to see the set of houses the earth signs rule, then read on for yours.
Fire houses (1st, 5th, 9th)
You came in wanting to bring more practicality and earthly realism to how you see yourself, express yourself, and pursue your place in the world. Your time and energy are precious to you and you want to spend them wisely.
Earth houses (2nd, 6th, 10th)
You’re needing to more fully own your humanity in a way that propels you to take purposeful action. You can get stuck on over preparing or resisting what you know you need to do. You’re learning that embracing human limits and boundaries supports your actions.
Air houses (3rd, 7th, 11th)
You’re embracing the tangible value of verbal communication. No matter how effective you are at using your intuition to read the room or understand someone, you’re learning to embrace the value of speaking up and having things defined in writing, in having defined agreements and goals with individuals and groups.
Water houses (4th, 8th, 12th)
You’re learning to feel safe & powerful through vulnerability. You selectively share parts of yourself. Now you’re learning to be more open about your needs, more intimate in relationships and to practice self-care. Vulnerability teaches you how strong you are and guides you to the connections that best support you.
Earth signs ♉️♍️♑️
I made similar posts on the Fire and Water signs last week. Today we are looking at Earth.
Everything meaningful in your chart is reflected in multiple ways. Even taking a quick peek at where an element shows up in your chart can shine a light on lessons and themes for this life.
Look for the earth in your chart. Do you relate to what I’ve shared above?
This full moon today is often called the strawberry moon or rose moon. It’s in Capricorn and is exact on Thursday (24 June 2021) at 2:40pm ET. Both the sun and moon will be at 3 degrees and aspect Jupiter. The moon will sextile Jupiter so the sun forms a trine.
I feel like this full moon is especially supportive of opportunities to see how we can communicate our vulnerability in a way that makes us feel more safe. When we fully accept ourselves it’s easier to be clear about how we feel and to express ourselves. We’re less fragile. Our emotional walls dissolve and transmute into confidence and strength, limitations become healthy boundaries and our emotions energize us into foundational self care.
This full moon is also a super moon and it’s the last one for this year. Soak up the glorious moonshine. Have a beautiful full moon.
Just after midnight on January 13th we have our first new moon of this new year. It’s in Capricorn and it comes with a Pluto conjunction.
This is a big one.
We are being asked to own our choices and our true intentions behind them, to remember that we always have a choice, to own our responsibility for our choices, for our own healing and our responsibilities to each other. And if that wasn’t enough, to know deep down that we can transform our lives no matter the circumstances, even random ones.
It’s a lot.
I’m guessing you’ve experienced serendipity, those beautiful moments when things just seem to workout in this oddly unexpected way. You may believe when that happens that everything happens for a reason.
I don’t. I’m going to tell you the three big things that I believe drive our experiences.
First, the more we live in alignment with our intuition, our highest good … when we surrender and let our soul guide us through life, the more of these serendipitous moments we have. We get into a flow and life feels easier. We don’t always see how things will work out at the time, but we follow that inner guidance and eventually see how it all comes together.
Second, there’s a randomness to this life. Sometimes circumstances fall in our favor and sometimes they don’t. Part of this randomness is our human experience and we are here to learn that we can transcend what happens here. We are bigger than any human experience and we can create meaningful transformation no matter what happens.
I don’t like the saying that everything happens for a reason, because it implies we’re not really responsible for anything. So what if there’s poverty or social injustice, everything happens for a reason, so those people must need to learn something. I also don’t believe that the universe is cruel. I would never tell parents that their child was raped and murdered so they could learn something. What lessons is worth the cost of that tuition?
So what about karma? Maybe you think that’s the reason behind the serendipity and tragic experiences of life.
So third, the beliefs and experiences you bring into this life do drive what you believe and your thoughts do create your reality. The energy of your thoughts causes you to see things the way you believe them to be and attracts to you what matches your beliefs. I get that. I mean I do karmic astrology.
The thing is, karma is not about punishment and rewards, it’s about cause and effect. You do something and that causes a reaction. You believe it’s okay to hurt others and then find yourself on the victim side of an experience where someone hurts you. After all, you believe it’s okay to hurt others. There is a connection between what we believe and what shows up in our life.
So here’s what I want you to really consider …
Your deepest responsibility and the most powerful choice you can make is to both wholly own that you are responsible for your life and the choices you make AND at the same time, turn control of your life over to your soul, your higher self.
When you do this, you maximize the likelihood you will experience the serendipity of life working out. You are more able to transform the heartbreak in life and you are more able you to transcend your karma. The merry go round of cause and effect is always spinning, but you have the ability to jump off.
When you own the source of your pain and heal your wounds, your belief changes and the karma is done.
So yes, life works better when we follow our intuition and ride the current of the divine. Things fall into place more easily and life is more abundant. Listening to that inner guidance improves your life. It can become a waste of energy though
to micro analyze everything or beat yourself up if something happens in life that isn’t good. Learn what you can, accept what is and move on to creating the transformation you need, because while there is a random element to life here how we handle it and get back on track is up to us.
Being open to transformation is our responsibility.
The secret to my eternal optimism isn’t that I believe every outcome is always going to be good. I’m not an “it’s all good” kind of person. My secret is that I know with certainty that everything can be transcended. Everything.
So during this new moon in Capricorn, be open to owning your choices and when making them, consider surrendering to what you know deep down is the best choice. Even if you don’t fully understand it. It’s actually very practical to follow the path your soul nudges you towards. It’s more efficient. It works better. And that is part of the beauty of Capricorn, allowing our divine self to be expressed through our human existence.
In previous blogs I have discussed the four elements and three qualities. I explained that each of the cardinal signs seek to assert themselves. In some way they are all driven and ambitious. The fixed signs are all focused and tenacious and have a definitive quality about them. The mutable signs are versatile, restless and seek change. Let’s take a look at the moon in the elements and see how these elements combine with the three qualities to give us the twelve signs.
Fire is active and initiating energy. It seeks to create experience and take action. All of the fire moons feel nurtured through experience and action. Aries (Fire & Cardinal) seeks to experience life first hand and learn by doing. Aries energy needs to feel directly involved with the experience. Leo (Fire & Fixed) is more focused and wants the experience to have meaning. These moons need to be feel valued and feel admired and to serve the greater good. Sagittarius (Fire & Mutable) is restless and desires change. These moons feel nurtured through change that leads to growth and expansion. Sagittarian moons are progressive and seek spiritual fulfillment.
Earth is stabilizing concrete energy, and naturally tends to create form and solidify human experience. Taurus (Earth & Fixed) is focused and tenacious so these moons need physical pleasure and do best when they are comfortable. Virgo (Earth & Mutable) combines the versatility of the mutable signs with the earth element, resulting in a moon that needs to feel a sense of service. There’s a need to keep changing the physical, so just when everything is settled, these moons want to move again and disrupt the order in life somehow. Capricorn (Earth & Cardinal) really needs structure and flourishes when their home base is solid. They are driven to create something that has lasting value.
Air is changeable kinetic energy, and expands to create discovery and innovation. Gemini (Air & Mutable) moons need variety and so they are in perpetual motion. They are emotional chameleons seeking changing circumstances. Libra (Air & Cardinal) combines the intellectual quality of air and the assertiveness of cardinal to create a thoughtful desire for life to be fair. Libra seeks balance. Aquarius (Air & Fixed) is intensified innovative energy resulting in a need for the unexpected, and an ability to relate to those in all walks of life.
Water is steadily flowing energy that moves to shape and deepen any experience. Cancer (Water & Cardinal) is strong, assertive emotion. Cancer needs emotional security and likes to be in control. Scorpio (Water & Fixed) is intense emotion and almost thrives on crisis. Scorpio moons have much to learn and teach regarding choice. Pisces (Water & Mutable) is fluid emotion. They are are gentle dreamers with great capacity for empathy and compassion. They tend to blur the lines between illusion and reality and kind find themselves often in the role of rescuer or feeling that they are in need of rescue.
I hope this gives you a better understanding of how the elements and qualities create the twelve astrological signs.
In the past two blog entries, I’ve taken a brief look at the Moon and the Ascendant, and considered how each of these two pieces are colored by the twelve signs. Today I’m going to begin an explanation of how the meaning of the Astrological signs are derived, by discussing the elements.
The signs are derived from four elements and three modalities. The four elements are fire, earth, air and water. The three modalities are cardinal, fixed and mutable. Identifying all the possible combinations of these elements and modalities results in the twelve signs of the Zodiac. For example, there is a fire sign that is cardinal, a fire sign that is fixed, and a fire sign that is mutable. The same is true for each of the remaining three elements, thus providing a total of twelve different ways these elements and modalities may be paired.
To begin our illustration, we’ll first look at the four elements. Fire is active and initiating energy. It seeks to create experience and take action. The fire signs are Aries, Leo and Sagittarius. Earth is stabilizing concrete energy, and naturally tends to create form and solidify human experience. Taurus, Virgo and Capricorn are the three earth signs. Air is changeable kinetic energy, and expands to create discovery and innovation. Gemini, Libra and Aquarius make up the Air trio. Water is steadily flowing energy that moves to shape and deepen any experience. Water is the element of Cancer, Scorpio and Pisces.
Each sign belongs to one of these elements, and each sign is connected to the other signs of the same element. To demonstrate this point, we’ll now look at Mercury in the elements. Mercury symbolizes the rational mind and how we communicate via language. It’s what we believe “makes sense.” Mercury in our chart shows how we think and how we learn. People that have Mercury in the fire signs are people that need first hand experience to learn. They can’t just read about it or hear a lecture. A fire Mercury also needs to connect thought with action in some way. Kids with Mercury in a fire sign usually do better when their learning environment gives them the opportunity to experience the lesson rather than simply to be taught the lesson.
People with Mercury in earth signs seek a practical application for what they are taught. If information isn’t useful, then it rarely makes sense to these types. An earth Mercury needs to connect thought with some type of form. Kids with Mercury in an earth sign usually do better when they are taught how they can use what they are learning to create something new or improve something already established, rather than learning for the sake of learning.
Mercury in the air signs gives us people that crave knowledge and information, and love to learn for the sake of learning. An air Mercury can read a book or engage in conversation on a subject that s/he will never actively pursue, just for the excitement of discovery and for the satisfaction that comes from sharing and exchanging ideas. Kids with Mercury in an air sign usually do better when they have access to books and discussions that allow them to share ideas.
A water Mercury needs to feel emotionally connected to learn. This connection can be to a teacher or to some internal desire that drives the person to want to learn. Mercury in water often feels a need to derive some sense of control and/or to feel that the knowledge is empowering. Kids with Mercury in water usually do better when they have a positive relationship with their teachers and learning environment, and feel as though what they are learning is personally enriching.
Next time, I’ll use Mercury to take a look at the three modalities, and explore how these combine with the elements to differentiate the twelve signs.
The Ascendant, also called the Rising Sign, (both terms mean exactly the same thing) is the sign that appears on the eastern horizon, relative to where you were born, at the moment you were born. It is referred to as the lens through which you see the world, because it is your initial view of life, as well as the mask or surface personality that you develop in childhood for dealing with the world. The Ascendant also describes the kind of family pattern you were born in to, and the kind of child your parents wanted. As with every piece in a chart, you look at the sign, the degrees, and aspects etc., but even just looking at the sign can provide insight into the meaning of the Ascendant in your chart.
Those with Aries Rising often end up in families where they continue to be treated like a child, making the transition to adulthood difficult. Aries Ascendants usually take life at face value, and come in to learn to take risks, be spontaneous, and develop a clear sense of individuality. Taurus Rising is generally told to have specific goals and to be aware of when it is worthwhile to make an effort. Taurus Ascendants usually develop a strong appreciation for the sensual, physical side of life, and come in to learn how to conserve resources, pace oneself, and feel at ease.
Those with Gemini Rising are generally told to not be a burden, and to learn to tell people what they want to hear. Gemini Ascendants generally have strong verbal skills and are very adaptable, and come in to this life to learn to develop a lighter touch in life. Cancer Rising is often raised to be a parent and nurture others. Cancer Ascendants generally know how to stay in control, and often must learn how to ask for and receive help from others.
Leo Rising is usually told that it is important to look good and dress right to succeed in life. Leo Ascendants are often drawn to serving the greater good, and have a keen eye for improving themselves and others. Their lessons often involve learning to be happy. Virgo Rising is usually told to work hard and to pay attention to detail. Virgo Ascendants often have a talent with math, music or healing and come in to learn how to derive fulfillment through work and service.
Libra Rising usually grows up being told to be fair, play nice, and to be aware of what other people need. Libra Ascendants know how to accommodate others, and are here to learn balance in life and in one on one relationships. Scorpio Rising often indicates a family that kept secrets and had trouble setting consistent priorities. Scorpio Ascendants understand vulnerability, and often have come in to this life to learn to be decisive and become comfortable with choice.
Sagittarius Rising is usually told to be self reliant and to focus only on the good in any situation. Sagittarius Ascendants often project a lot of confidence and faith, though they are usually here to learn how to trust. Capricorn Rising is usually told to grow up immediately and often doesn’t have time to be a kid. Capricorn Ascendants usually appear to be very grounded even though their lessons often include learning how to achieve stability in life.
Aquarius Rising is told to be observant and to be a team player. Aquarius Ascendants generally hear a call to social consciousness and come in to learn how to develop connections with others that include intimacy. Pisces Rising is told to blend in and to have compassion. Pisces Ascendants usually have a chameleon like quality and their lessons often include learning that they cannot save anyone accept themselves.
What is your Rising Sign? Check it out for clues about your family patterns, and the kinds of masks you wear in the world.