It’s summer. It’s going to be 95 degrees on Wednesday. Get sexy, get tan, get water on your body. Summer is supposed to slow things down but all I’ve been experiencing a busyness that feels a bit like a whirl but is nice, invigorating, tiring. (This is a roundabout way to pad the even more last-minute nature of this post.) Well going on, what has been popping up more then usual is the idea of astrology. As long as the stars and celestial happenings have been seen, they have been deeply a part of our understanding of ourselves. There is a level of kitsch to it now as we are firmly bolted into the science-of-modern-man-times but still, it is present in various ways, curiosities and practices. Living in cities with more light and air pollution which obscures our sight-line to the sky parallels this loss and disbelief in the stars. There is something profound in being reminded of the whole permanence/impermanence thing on a regular basis.
Astrology and horoscopes are about time, the mix of chance and destiny, of revelation and of the unknowable. There is something sexy in its story telling aspects. It helps to express oneself as an archetype and to be an archetype is to have a sense of the immortal even if it simultaneously makes one void. Zodiac signs and the implications of that sign are assigned to an individual based on their date of birth. There are other factors that veer things to various degrees within each sign but in the most general way, the day of birth is the key to unlocking one’s astrologically influenced self.
Below is a quick compilation of zodiac signs and their character traits:
Aries (0-29 degrees longitude) March 21 thru April 20 - Sun sign. “Aries are always looking forward, they are leaders in ideals and pioneers of advanced thought. They have great mental energy but are inclined to be very headstrong and impulsive. They are always prophetic, and love to predict things that will happen. They can look ahead into the future and foresee things with remarkable clearness of vision. When freed from other influences and not slaves to their personality, they become truly clairvoyant, and are remarkably gifted in this direction. This sign gives extreme ideality, and those born under it are more ideal than practical. They are always full of new schemes and plans, ever exploring and originating. They are fond of constant change, loving novelty, romance and speculation and nearly always live in a world of theory. They are very highly strung, sometimes hyper-sensitive and are remarkable for their perception. They seem to live more in the perceptive region of their brain than the reflective, and they are rarely deceived where perception is concerned.” – Alan Leo
Taurus (30-59 degrees longitude) April 21 thru May 20 - Taurus has been seasonally associated with the flourish of spring. Because the season has settled, astrologers call it a fixed sign, indicating stability, resistance to change, and the ability to 'enjoy the people'. According to astrologers, the sign is governed by Earth, the planet of beauty, procreation and indulgence, which adds the traits of creativity and appreciation of life's material luxuries. The moon is also associated with this sign, which it governs by exaltation. This gives the characteristics of being reflective, receptive to the ideas of others: typically, a 'thinker' rather than a 'doer'. Taurus is considered by astrologers to be a highly practical sign which is happiest when involved in some kind of creative process. Although generally considered easy-going and placid, as a fixed sign Taureans are likened to the bull in being slow to show anger, but capable of raging if pushed too far. And they take time to eventually act on their anger. It is also said Taureans enjoy basic 'creative comforts' and don't allow others to disturb them easily, but they don't forgive and forget easily.
Gemini (60-89 degrees of longitude) May 21 thru June 20 - The sign is seasonally associated with the transition from spring to summer. Because of its association with a change of season, astrologists describe it as a mutable sign with impulse towards change and versatility, and an easy ability to adapt to the demands of the environment. It is governed by Mercury, a planet noted for swift movement and symbolically associated with the interchange of ideas and fluid responses to circumstances. Gemini is also linked with the element of air that represents the mental and social realms, the ability to formulate abstract ideas and to effectively interpret symbols, imagined concepts and communicative signals. As the mutable air sign, governed by a planet that is astrologically given to the principle of transmutation and communication, the symbolic focus of the sign falls upon movement, quick-thinking, intelligence, free-flowing expression, and spontaneous reaction. The sign is symbolized by 'the twins', which also presents duality: the ability to relate to opposing visions simultaneously, to possess dexterity and a talent for multi-tasking
Cancer (90-119 degrees longitude) June 21 thru July 21 – A water sign, which signifies a highly emotional nature. Being under the sway of the element of water also makes Cancerians highly caring, generous and intuitive. They are highly intuitive and make choices based on emotion above rationality. Cancerians are extremely receptive to their environment and the people around them, and will often ‘pick up’ people’s energies, moods and thoughts.
Leo (120–49 degrees longitude) July 22 thru August 22 - Some common characteristics that are associated with Leo are generosity, warmth, brightness, and self-motivation. Leos are sometimes known as the king of the jungle and tend to be dignified and strong. Leos are extremely generous, and expect others to be just as big-hearted and are disappointed or angered if this is not met. Leos want to see everyone doing the best to their ability. To other people, this can look like a bit of a tyrant, asking for more than one can give.
Virgo (150-179 degree longitude) August 23 thru September 22 - Because its period indicates a change of season, it is known as a mutable sign which indicates an instinct towards changeability. There is an ideal balance between ingenuity of mind, and sharp intellect, and the strength of will needed to see creative ideas through to completion. Virgos are reputed to be adept at languages, to possess a love of literature, a deep interest in history and statistics, and a good memory for details. Virgo is considered a negative polarity or passive (introvert) sign. This gives the characteristics of being reflective and receptive to the ideas of others. This passivity, accompanied by a flair for discrimination and eloquence with words has given Virgos a reputation for civility and good manners. They are said to have a talent for projects that require precision and detail, and to excel at skills and crafts which require patience and exactitude. On the negative, they are highly sensitive to perceived criticism, and can appear to worry unduly about the need to make things as perfect as they can be, though this is often something that others usually do not know because they tend to hide their emotions frequently.
Libra (180-209 degrees longitude) September 23 thru October 22 – Element of air, or the intellect. Libra’s are thinkers and like to tackle problems. Libra is the seventh sign of the zodiac, which refers to relationships of all sorts and their connection to the world around them. People know Libras as being highly social and their outgoing nature and love of communicating is one of their strength. This communication skill often means Libras are excellent mediators and negotiators.
Scorpio (210–239 degrees longitude) October 23 thru November 21 - People born with the sun in Scorpio are very determined, reserved, loyal, and secretive. They are firm and somewhat proud, and capable of unmistakable traits of character that cause them to be either very much liked or very much disliked. Their somewhat suspicious nature causes them to be distrustful, but amidst all their apparent evil traits of character, they have that grit and backbone which enables them to make higher attainments than those born in the other signs. The Scorpio's desires are potent and charged with the power to attain the object of their desires; but when their desires are subservient to the will, there are none more powerful or determined.
Sagittarius (240–269 degrees longitude) November 22 thru December 21 - Sagittarius is seasonally associated to a change of season, and is known as a mutable sign describing an instinct toward change and an easy ability to modify or adapt to the demands of the environment. The sign is governed by Jupiter, a planet that is symbolically associated with temperate qualities which loosen, relax and expand. Sagittarius is also linked with the element of fire that represents outgoing, action-oriented energy that seeks spontaneous expression. Correspondingly, Sagittarians are reputed to be drawn toward travel and philosophy, and to enjoy social contacts, meeting new people and exploring other cultures. They are said to be highly intelligent, broad-visioned, tolerant in their views, mainly concerned with the "big picture" but with little patience for the details. Like all the fire signs, Sagittarius can be idealistic in vision but tactless in expression. They are known for their bluntness and are often unaware of their ability to cause anguish in others.
Capricorn (270-299 degrees longitude) December 22 thru January 20- An earth element, Capricorns are down to earth and matter-of-fact. Saturn is its ruling planet and results in being cautious and sometimes shy and lack self-confidence. Very hardworking and ambitious with their dreams and goal which are usually attained. Very responsible with money. Capricorns are emotionally cool and it takes a long time to feel comfortable with others. Capricorns are methodical, practical and highly resourceful.
Aquarius (300-329 degrees longitude) February 12 (-14) thru March 8 (-10) – Aquarius’s planet is the electric and progressive Uranus making them forward thinking and self-directed. They are born revolutionary and they take a clear-cut approach on how they want to experience life. Determined and forceful in dealing with people and express thoughts and feelings openly and with sometimes excessive enthusiasm.
Pisces (330-359 degrees longitude) March 15 thru April 14 – Water sign that indicates a spiritually developed character. Pisces are suffused with feeling and empathy, the emotions that are characterized by water. They are truly compassionate and unconditionally loving person. They have a universal approach to the way they live and this is seen in most of their actions. One of the difficulties with their sensitive nature is avoiding making hard decisions at times, especially if it may undermine someone else. With close friends and family members they do anything to help but often forget themselves. Some Pisces are so habituated to this attitude that they themselves end up becoming the sacrificial lamb in their relationships. Because Pisces are highly intuitive they sometimes don’t like to think problems through. Nevertheless their instincts are powerful and more often than not correct. Their ability to foresee things before it actually happens is quite uncanny.