In Western astrology, the location and movements of the astrological planets, sun and moon are major influences of the traits associated with the zodiac signs. The exact position of the planets, sun and moon at the time, date and location of your birth make up your natal (birth) chart. These locations are ever changing in the heavens and continually influence your current horoscope and future events that take place in your life. Each planet rules a specific zodiac sign; however, they all have some type of influence over all of the other signs. Just as it is a fact that the moon influences the tides and your mood, astrologers believe that the planets, sun and moon have powerful forces at work in the universe and on an individual level. Listed below are descriptions of the planets, sun and moon and how they relate to and influence astrology.
The Sun, a luminary, rules Leo, his element is Fire and he represents masculinity. The Sun, which is actually a star, is at the center of the solar system and the other planets revolve around it. In astrology, it defines your inner center — personality, ego, the self, who you really are, how you relate to others, leadership qualities, creativity, vitality, life force and spirit. It governs reason, not intuition. The Sun represents the masculine part of your personality. Whether male or female, the Sun holds clues as to how you may relate to your father or other male figures in your life.
The Moon, a luminary, rules Cancer, her element is Water and she represents femininity. The Moon governs emotions, feelings and gut instincts. Whether male or female, the Moon holds clues as to how you may relate to your mother or other female figures in your life.
Mercury rules Gemini and Virgo, and Earth is his element. Mercury, the messenger of the gods, governs communication — how you relate to others and how others hear you. It is concerned with how you process and receive information — how you question and analyze. It is associated with your central nervous system, which is the key to communication and coordination between your physical and mental processes.
Venus rules Taurus and Libra, and Air is her element. Venus is known as the planet of love and represents harmony and your pleasure centers — love, attraction, prosperity and contentment. It defines people who you are drawn to and those who you want to run away from. Venus also governs loving relationships and not just in the physical sense, but also in the mental sense. She seeks to unite you with the significant people around you.
Mars rules Aries and Scorpio, and Fire is his element. Mars is known as the god of War. He is assertive, disciplined, takes initiative and is willing to take forceful action when necessary. Mars is competitive and symbolizes the degree of one’s ability to self-motivate and to be self-driven. But he tends to act quickly before thinking things through. Mars is also both physically and emotionally passionate in pursuit of a romantic relationship and when in a relationship, as well as toward life goals.
Jupiter rules Sagittarius and Pisces, and Air is his element. Jupiter is known as the King of the gods and is considered a social planet. It encourages your expansion and realization of a higher consciousness and reaching your dreams. Jupiter opens your path through travel, education, philosophy and the tests that you encounter along the way. It is optimistic, lucky and helps you to feel safe and secure in your environment so that you may take risks and seek the truth to help you toward your financial and personal goals.
Saturn rules Capricorn and Aquarius, and Earth is his element. Saturn is a serious planet and helps you lay out your path for success. It puts up limits, restrictions and boundaries so that you stay focused. These are things you may not like, but they are necessary for growth.
Uranus rules Aquarius, and Fire is his element. Uranus is a transpersonal or generational planet. It reveals more information about the generation that you were born into rather than your exact nature. It represents a deviation from the norm, eccentricity, individualization, rebellion, self-expression and liberation. It can symbolize an awakening that brings about sudden change, or even chaos and disruption, which can eventually bring about inventiveness and creative invention.
Neptune rules Pisces, and Water is his element. Neptune is the god of the Sea and is a transpersonal or generational planet. A slow moving planet, it acts as a channel to connect with intuition, mysticism, the occult and psychic abilities. It guides its generation toward their spiritual consciousness. It symbolizes the dreamer, artist and creative energy. Neptune can be associated with addiction, denial and retreat into fantasy to avoid reality.
Pluto rules Scorpio. Pluto is the god of the Underworld or Wealth and is a transpersonal or generational planet, which relates to how a generation will transform itself and how that relates to an individual’s transformation. No element has been assigned to it, although it is believed made up of 98 percent nitrogen ice. Pluto represents transformation, uncovering dark forces within, destruction, compulsion, power, control, life, death, renewal and rebirth. Change will take place whether or not you embrace it. You will need to let go and accept what has been handed to you, either spiritually or materially. The old ways and characteristics will be replaced by something better.
Chiron is a relatively new comet or asteroid (discovered in 1977). The name Chiron is taken from Greek mythology and is an immortal centaur — half man, half horse. It symbolizes a wounded healer. Those who have been psychologically or physically wounded will be able to break through the pain of the wound to heal and bring out their fullest potential. Currently, many astrologers do not recognize Chiron as having an impact on the natal chart. However, in time it may take on a greater importance.
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