Click on each sign for more information. Dates are approximate and may change annually.
Astrology has been popular off and on for over 5000 years and has evolved over 5 millennia to become 3 separate yet primary branches. Ayurvedic (or Vedic) astrology, perhaps the progenitor of all modern astrological systems, is one of the oldest forms and is generally practised and followed in India and Hindu cultures around the world. Chinese astrology is derived from Ayurvedic astrology and is widely followed in countries with large Asian populations, originating in China. Western astrology was developed through Persian and Greco-Roman influences over the last 2500 years, with these ancient cultures applying their own names and interpretations of the signs and planets now so familiar.
Historically, most every indigenous culture worldwide developed their own unique form of astrology, often independently from other cultures, such as Celtic astrology, North American First Nations animal medicine astrology, Egyptian, Mayan and Aztec astrology.
Although all 3 primary systems of astrology are quite different from one another, it’s interesting to note that they correspond with the 3 primary branches of medicine; Ayurvedic, Traditional Chinese Medicine, and modern allopathic (Western) medicine.
In the Americas, Europe and parts of Oceania, Western astrology is most widely followed and is the system used on this web site.
THE SIGNS OF THE ZODIAC
About 5000 years ago when astrology was first recorded the ancient astrologers designated areas of the heavens above that roughly corresponded to 30 degrees of arc each or about 1/12th of a perfect 360 degree circle. These areas were called a zodiac sign and loosely contained constellations of stars and were given individual names relating to their current gods and mythologies. Eventually, the zodiac signs each had their own biography, associations, and governed distinct qualities of life as well and called rulerships.
With these 12 signs forming a 360 degree belt in the sky called the ecliptic they also provide a backdrop for each planet as it follows relatively the same pathway as the Sun’s throughout the ecliptic circle (except Pluto and Mercury). From our viewpoint here on earth, and more so for the ancient people that developed astrology, it appears that the sun and planets travel through the “houses” or domains of each zodiac sign. In addition to creating our seasons, the tilt of the earth at 23.5 degrees with respect to its axis allows the sun, moon and planets appear to rise and set. These planetary cycles and how they interact with other planets by angles were observed over hundreds of years to create a body of knowledge called astrology.
Signs evolved to include the general area of each star group as well, culminating in adding neighbouring stars to the sign constellation now seen as the 12 different general regions of the sky determined by the International Astronomical Union. (The IAU is the worldwide body of renowned astronomers in charge of naming and designating celestial bodies.) These regions differ from the area of the sky used by astrologers but unfortunately bear the same names, Aries, Taurus, etc. Astrologers use the night sky and zodiac circle as determined about 2000 years ago and hasn’t changed. It’s just one of the reasons astronomers think astrologers are dumb at best.
Astrology evolves alongside humanity. It’s interesting to compare ancient views of each sign with the modern view. It is a skill that has been practised since recorded history and understanding it has evolved over time. The adoption or rejection of horoscope signs and other components and theories almost ebb and flow like the tides. By astrologers and the public alike.
Most practitioners and followers of Western Astrology consider that the signs are archetypes for human behaviour but all things of the earth and nature as well, indeed the universe. It is unknown why God would design a Universe so mathematically constructed yet where we somehow can be involved with interacting with the Universe, even creating it on a daily basis.
Astrology appears to be a language of sorts. The snapshot of a horoscope with all the 12 signs around and the planets placed as pinpoints in the circle of the 360 degree chart is similar to a recording in hieroglyphics. The planets and sign symbols are in fact called glyphs in astrology.
The planets, signs, houses, etc. appear to work like verbs, nouns, adverbs and adjectives in how they operate together. At the same time the signs are also like twelve different colours, the planets like different shades of white through black, and the way in which they all mix can create unique sentences. Over time, the sentences tell a story.
Every day, each and every one of us paints a daily picture of our life just by living it. For some reason the Universe allows for us to save the canvas as a horoscope almost like a still picture. As we know, when viewing a succession of still pictures flashing before us quickly we see movement. This ability to view a horoscope or person’s life throughout the framework of time includes the potential to forecast the future. That’s where science and religion will part ways with astrologers, but as they do they should know that we can’t explain it either but at least we keep trying to understand it while knowing it can be used positively to help people.
For now on we’re going to ignore any more attempts to defend or explain astrology and just try to understand its archetypes.
Astrology is a very broad topic with several branches yet is similar to psychology in that it is also a collection of observations and theories which can be used to make certain diagnoses or predict behaviour and activities. The part of astrology (forecasting) that goes beyond psychology may rightly be included more in the realms of parapsychology as astrology can be used to predict events. However anyone claiming to forecast the future is thought to be a crackpot or crackhead yet we forecast many other areas of life without impunity.
As a profession science and astronomers mostly still view astrology as that old whore of a mother they’d sooner forget and hide away. Yet like a mother’s love, astrology persists in the hearts of millions worldwide, or at least as an intriguing form of entertainment or amusement. In the 21st century astrology is used and followed in many ways. It adapts to every media.
In many ways, an astrologer is just a different type of meteorologist. They read charts and maps to predict the weather based on highs and lows, pressure systems, etc. Astrologers really do much the same, reading a horoscope for planetary and sign patterns, high and low pressure systems and can make predictions based on these cycles but for life events not precipitation. Why this may occur is the question science should be asking not ignoring it just because they can’t explain the how.
None of this is witchcraft or any other alien or religious power. It is mind boggling to me, the practising astrologer, that planets, stars and their angles that are located so far away from us could even have any bearing at all on life in general let alone an individual person’s life. It is the reason I studied it, to prove it was all hokey. Instead I learned to understand its patterns and felt it could be used positively to guide people through difficult times in life. Any therapeutic practice is designed to help a person heal from emotional, family, mental, sexual and spiritual health problems. The ultimate goal its that the person develop better tools for daily living, self awareness, creativity and happiness in life. That is also the goal of astrology when practised professionally or therapeutically.
Astrology has a basis in science although astronomers deny the existence of their progenitor; astrology predates modern astronomy as ancient astrologers practised astronomy for the purpose of astrology.
The history and mythology of the zodiac signs can be very intriguing. The twelve horoscope signs used in Western Astrology were developed at different times in its past five millennia of practice. The names and quantity of the zodiac signs and which signs to include in a horoscope were debated for centuries, along with the number of houses, planets, stars, and the systems of calculation.
All of the zodiac signs, horoscope or astrology signs (or just “signs” with all terms being generally used) were originally named for patterns of star groups (constellations) that different cultures gave different names and representations (see History of Astrology). Today, there are 3 primary branches of astrology with the 3 primary groups of signs used being different in name and symbology, although there are some correspondences.
Each sign draws its symbols from its relationships to first of all its ruling planet and house but also its relationships to other signs, planets and houses. The archetypes are formed from ancient mythologies of former gods worshipped by certain cultures and were catalogued and accepted by Jung and his school of psychology. This is noted only to provide a basis for how a behaviour could at all be influenced by a sign symbol.
The associations of each sign to things important to society, people and nature are more often known as rulerships. These rulerships interact with one another mutually as well and the lists of rulerships grow as human beings and societies develop. E.G. Mars is a ruler of wars and weapons and in ancient days represented knives and swords. That list today includes guns of all kinds and sadly so much more.
Each sign’s basic character traits are present in one way or another and in varying strengths somewhere as all 12 signs are represented in everybody’s horoscope. When the sun or rising sign is located in a sign it accentuates these sign qualities, as does having 3 or more planets located in any sign in a horoscope (called a stellium). As the Sun is the general indicator of personality, each sign says much about the personality of the individual but the entire horoscope can reveal clues to personality. In many ways each individual’s sun sign represents the very best and the very worst we may have to offer to the world. Of course the goal is to evolve into being the very vest versions of our selves.
Some basic character traits can be both positive or negative. Much like most everything else in astrology and life it is all about intent. It takes a bit of skill over a long period of time for an astrologer to really hone their skills. It gets very tricky sometimes in a horoscope to know exactly whether something may manifest in a positive or negative way so experience helps in understanding personality and much more.
Many of us develop our worst traits in our childhood or through enduring horrible experiences at earlier times. Genetics, astrology and Lady Gaga agree that we are all “born this way” but only to an extent. One can learn to turn any liability into an asset. This will build character and encourage a happier life as side effects.
As adults, we have a responsibility to unlearn bad habits to prevent further harm from self and others. As members of society, we have an accountability to one another and developing your best character traits and personality builds not only your success, but the success of the community whether local or universal.
Whenever a person of any sign is severely stressed (or drunk) they may erupt with a negative character response typical of their sign such as the Arien impatience. Interestingly, the basic character traits seem derived from one another, and are relative to the planet and houses as mentioned.