Virgo – ♍ – Virgin – Health – August 23/September 22 – Earth – Mutable – Yin (-) – Interpersonal – Mercury
Virgo the Virgin is the Sun Sign associated with “Discrimination,” and acts of order, neatness, and clarity. Virgo represents clear-headedness, tidiness, analysis, attention to detail, and precision. The Sun Sign of Virgo is associated with the Astrological House of Health, associated with caretaking, performing skilled tasks, and, of course, well-being. This is a reflection of Virgo’s association with the element of Earth; while the Air Sun Sign of Gemini is association with reason and logic, Virgo represents this reason and logic applied to practical matters, resulting in analysis and skill. This association is further compounded by Virgo’s Mutable Modality: Virgos are flexible and can adapt to situations in order to maintain their balance. The security that Leo establishes is maintained by the practical, down-to-earth philosophies of Virgo. Virgo keeps the family of Cancer and Leo healthy and strong. Virgo is also associated with the Yin Polarity, or the inhale of breath; it is passive and focused on the self.
Virgo is of the Interpersonal Orientation, meaning that the Sun Sign is associated with relations between people. The Virgin maiden is often seen as a caretaker for others; just look at the ancient Roman Vestal Virgins for an example. Virgins are protective – that’s why they are still virgins – care both for themselves and for others, keeping everyone healthy. The Virgin is a competent, skilled worker, who pays attention to detail but can often be critical of others. While she cares for everyone, she may discriminate between those she thinks are better and those who are not, and may be over-controlling or too demanding at times.
Virgo is ruled by Mercury, and so is also associated with intelligence, rationality, and communication: intelligent communication between people is Virgo’s strength.
Leo – ♌ – Lion – Pleasure – July 22/August 22 – Fire – Fixed – Yang (+) – Interpersonal – The Sun
Leo the Lion is the Sun Sign associated with creativity. While all Fire Signs to some extent share this association, it is the focus of Leo. It also represents the public display of one’s inner self – the masculine Yang and the Identity principle of Fire asserting itself in one’s personality by celebrating its triumph. Leos are prideful, like a lion, and are unafraid of showing their true colors to others. This is why Leo is the first interpersonal sign; one’s inner self is manifested and shown to another, as Leos are concerned with how others perceive them, and seek to be appreciated and respected by others for their creativity. Leos are artists and creators, their creativity knowing no bounds. Leo is also a Sign of loyalty and love, and is often concerned with interpersonal feelings in the same vein.
Leo is of the Fixed Modality, meaning that it is a stabilizing Sign, creating a sense of security. This security comes from confidence in oneself and in those around you; the “pride” of lions is the ideal of Leo (just think of The Lion King). Leos want their deeds and actions to be appreciated by others. Leo finishes the action of Cancer; Cancer provides home and family, and Leo provides that home and family with love, loyalty, and pride. The House of Leo is that of Pleasure, and is associated with recreation, love, self-expression, and doing things for the sake of doing them; this is also the Sign of moderate hedonism. Enjoy yourself in the company of others – this Sign is also associated with sex, as sex is just that.
Leo is ruled by the Sun, associated with creativity and confidence – just the qualities embodied in a lion. The Sun is also associated with integration, reinforcing Leo’s own association with security and stability; everything orbits around the Sun, keeping our solar system stable, just as Leo provides stability for others.
Cancer – ♋ – Crab – Home – June 21/July 21 – Water – Cardinal – Yin (-) – Personal – The Moon
Cancer the Crab is the fourth Sun Sign, representing emotion in the form of nourishment and care. Cancers are concerned with the well-being of others – and themselves – and an excess of this Sign’s influence can lead to insecurity, fear, and paranoia. This is the card of a mother’s feelings towards her child, or of a nurse towards her patient. It is associated with the element of Water, placing it in the realm of emotions and of Yin – and in moderate amounts, this Sign provides security for oneself and others.
Cancer is a Cardinal Sign, meaning it represents the initiation of an action; a Cancer seeks out others to care for, and goes out of its way to do so. At the same time, the Sign’s association with Yin and Water, as well as its personal focus, show that the Cancer’s reasons for care might not always be in the best interests of the patient; sometimes the Cancer feels that they know best and will do things for others, even if it is unwanted. Yet even so, they do what they do for others with their best intentions at heart, but may find it difficult to see the situation from another’s perspective. The House of Cancer is that of Home, and represents the support and care a family gives to one another through sickness and health.
Cancer is ruled by the Moon – appropriate, given both Cancer’s and the Moon’s association with water. Due to this association, Cancer’s nurturing nature is reinforced strongly. The Moon also provides Cancer with a strong sense of intuition; a Cancer knows when something is wrong, and also often how exactly to fix it.
Gemini – ♊ – Twins – Communications – May 21/June 20 – Air – Mutable – Yang (+) – Personal – Mercury
Gemini is/are the twins. This Sun Sign represents the first onset of rational thought and self-awareness in the world, as well as the beginning of logical ordering in the spring. This is a Sign of reason and intelligence; as such, it is associated with the abstract element of Air. This sign is also of the Mutable Modality; it corresponds to adaptation and learning. In its form as the twins, Gemini is also the first contact with another, and represents close companionship, and the flexibility one needs to have in order to get along with another. The Sign is also of the personal orientation; not interpersonal like one might expect. This is because the focus of Gemini is on the individual‘s response to another; it is not about the relationship between two people so much as it is about one person’s reaction to said relationship.
People with an excess of Gemini can be superficial, analyzing situations and relationships without thought for what lies below the surface. Gemini is also of the Yang polarity, making it an active force; Geminis go out and try to see and understand the world, and communicate their ideas to others. The connection formed between Castor and Pollux – the two twins of Gemini – is not physical, but rather social and intellectual. This sign represents brotherly closeness, and the ability to speak freely to other individuals. It is the symbol of the first contact with other individuals, and the self-centered, childlike relationships you develop with them. The House of Gemini is the House of Communications, and Geminis are often able to express themselves clearly to others, and understand the thoughts of others as well. The House of Communications also represents a degree of higher education and understanding.
Mercury rules Gemini, providing for Gemini’s association with logic and reason. It also brings the communicative abilities of Gemini out, emphasizing their ability to use their logic and reason to communicate with others, and thereby help themselves become better people.
Taurus – ♉ – Value – Bull – April 21/May 20 – Earth – Fixed – Yin (-) – Personal – Venus
Taurus is the bull. While Aries represents the fiery outburst of growth associated with spring, Taurus represents the slow fertility and stability of the season. As representing the element of Earth, Taurus is a very materialistic sign, concerned with the physical world and with practicality. Those born into the sign of Taurus are concerned with getting things accomplished, and spreading their work into the world. As a fixed sign, Taurus exhibits motion towards the center, reproducing and stabilizing what has already been started. Taurus is resistant to change and extremely enduring; Taurus creates and then Taurus preserves.
While Aries is represented by the virile ram, Taurus is represented by the male half of the fertile cow. The bull is calm, slow, and steady, but brimming with potential; Taurus represents the anticipation of spring, and the promise of better things to come. This Sun Sign also is associated with the Personal Modality, relating to self-discovery and exploration of one’s own potential. A Taurean is strong, practical, well-grounded, enduring, and unmoving. The sign’s polarity is that of Yin; the feminine. This is reflected in the sign’s association with fertility and the Earth. The bull does not put too many things into the world; rather, it takes things in and then gently reshapes them before putting them back. Taurus is the womb of the Zodiac, caring for the child of Aries. The House of Taurus is that of Wealth; Taurus is the sign of propserity and possessing things of value, including understanding your own self-worth.
Venus rules Taurus, and is associated with beauty, refinement, and grace. Venus gives Taurus the ability to harmonize with the rest of the world, and gives the bull feminine grace with which to live. Taurus’ association with Venus reinforces its own association with fertility and womanhood.
Aries – ♈ – Self – Ram – March 21/April 20 – Fire – Cardinal – Yang (+) – Personal – Mars
Aries is often listed as the first of the Sun Signs, and this is appropriate as he is the initiator and origin of many things. He is also the Ram and the god of war. Aries represents the principle of action and activity; he is strong and willing to do what it takes to get the job done. Aries is one of the Sun Signs corresponding to the element of Fire – the element of action, creativity, passion, and will. It is of the Cardinal Modality, meaning that the Ram is one to begin setting things in motion. The energy of Aries is directed very clearly outward, and it stands at the rim of the Zodiac-as-wheel. Aries represents, then, virility and masculine passion. Looking at its astrological symbol, this becomes clear; while technically the symbol represents the horns of a ram (and horns are signs of virility in and of themselves), it also has a very phallic shape, including both phallus and testicles. Aries is the Sign of ultimate masculinity.
Someone who is an Aries will always the initiative and drive projects forward, though they might lack the lingering passion to complete them (the flame burns out quickly). They can often be impulsive as well, dong what they want when they want. Aries is aligned with the masculine element of Yang, as well, and represents therefore the exhalation of breath and the sending of energy outward into the world. Aries also focuses on the personal aspects of the individual, and is thus identified with identity and self-discovery. He can also be selfish, violent, and often inconsiderate of others. He focuses on self-gratification and what he needs and wants, not on others. This Sun Sign, then, is very much like a young boy just coming into his adolescence, hormones rushing through him as he attempts to discover who he is and to spread himself throughout the world as much as he can. The House of Aries in the House of Self, and it represents the early moments of life when you discover who you are, what you think of the world, and begin to develop your ego.
Aries is ruled by the planet Mars, and matches almost perfectly with Aries. Both Sun Sign and planet are names referring to the Greek and Roman gods of war, respectively. As such, both are associated with courage, assertiveness, and initiative. The two reinforce each other greatly.