Sextile and Quincunx

Sextiles are about opportunities. You are able to more easily access one energy via the other and are exploring that in this life. A sextile is especially helpful if one of the pieces is in a difficult aspect as the sextile shows a way of embracing the other energy.

Quincunx (also called inconjunct) is called the karmic neutralizer because one energy has been used to shutdown or neutralize the other. This is a subtle aspect that is powerfully felt making it difficult to understand within yourself. Working through this is a lifelong process.

Sextile is a 60 degree angle
Quincunx is a 150 degree angle
Both have a 3 degree orb

Sextile and quincunx are subtle yet still powerful aspects. They both use a tight orb of just three degrees and both tend to be felt and understood in layers over your life.

✨ Mars sextile Mercury shows opportunities to get these energies to work more easily together. For example mind and body, reason and ambition, communication and action. If Mars or Mercury is also in a challenging aspect, leaning into this sextile can help with the challenges.

💫 If Mars is also square the moon, leaning into your sextile can help you to deal with the inner struggle between Mars and Moon. Communicating about what you want, taking a more reasonable look at what you desire, improving your mind body connection can help you act in a way that’s more fulfilling, more satisfying.

⭐️ Mars quincunx Saturn shows struggles with being able to go after what you want. Your sense of responsibility can shut down your own desires and ambition. Your ambition and passion can shut down your sense of responsibility or ability to define healthy limits. You’re learning how to connect the two. You’re learning that you also have a responsibility to yourself, that healthy boundaries can support your physical health, passions and ambitions.

It can be challenging to see how a sextile or quincunx is expressed and experienced. They may be less obvious, but are just as present as the other aspects.

The key to a sextile is to look for opportunity for how you use them together and support that. You’ve had repeated experiences in other lives where you’ve used them together and you’re growing skills in this life.

The key to a quincunx is to understand that these energies can operate at the same time and this life is an opportunity to see that. You’ve had repeated experiences where they neutralized each other and used one or the other. This life includes learning to use them together.


How do you pronounce quincunx?

Quincunx is such a funny word to me. In Astrology, it’s an aspect formed when pieces are at a 150 degree angle with one another. I use an orb of 3 degrees, so that’s an angle of 147-153 degrees. Inconjunct is also used for this and means the same thing. I consistently use quincunx though, partly because it just sounds odd and also because (for me) the unusualness of the word conveys some of the unusualness of the aspect itself. 

In karmic astrology, a quincunx is referred to as the karmic neutralizer. Experiences in other life times have caused the person to learn to shut down parts of themselves. The pieces tend to neutralize each other, so that when one of them is receiving focus, the other tends to shut down. 

Let’s look at moon quincunx mars. The moon is emotions, nurturance, food, family and mars is physicality, sexuality, ambitions, drive. People with this aspect are likely to struggle with balancing getting emotional needs met and pursuing ambitions. It can be hard to develop a sexual relationship that is nurturing and emotionally rewarding. They often eat in ways that are not healthy for their bodies. When one of these energies is getting their attention, the other energy is shut down and it’s hard to integrate the two. 

All is not lost with a quincunx. When one shows up in a natal chart, think of it as a flashing red light. There are many life lessons connected to it, and understanding it will lead to huge growth. It’s almost like a call for help, trying to grab your attention. The signs and houses can be very insightful in helping you to understand both your karmic history getting you to this point (signs) and the current life focus (houses) that needs your attention. 

I don’t believe your natal chart determines the life you will live. It’s a painting of your karmic past and reveals the bags you packed when you came into this life. Those bags contain experiences and beliefs that show up as talents, challenges and lessons. If you have a quincunx, get honest with yourself about it and face what it’s telling you. Even if you do see that you are shutting down, denying or compartmentalizing parts of your life you can grow and change. 

However you have come to view your life, you can learn to see it differently. 

Copyright © 2017, Lisa Wagner