Here is a desktop wallpaper to celebrate the Sun’s month in the constellation of Cancer. Click it for a full size desktop version.
I am a huge fan of the glyphs developed in the West to represent the signs and planets. The essential meaning of every planet and sign is encoded into these fascinating symbols.
Glyphs for the Planets
Each planet’s glyph is made of the same primary symbols: a circle and a cross.
The circle is symbolic of life. The top of the circle is your original self, the bottom of the circle is your material identity. Life is a cyclic process of the original self transforming into a material being and then returning to a truer understanding of itself.
The cross is the symbol of effort. “We all have our crosses to bear.” The specific location of the cross on the circle reveals a lot about the meaning of a planets glyph.
There are two secondary symbols used in the glyphs: the half-circle and the arrow.
The half-circle is symbolic of evolution and development. The exact type of half-circle used in a specific glyph reveals a lot about it’s exact symbolism for that planet.
The arrow is simply a blurred cross, distorted due to the energy of the arrow’s movement. Only Mars has the energy to transform the cross of effort into the arrow of ambition.
☉The Sun’s glyph is a circle with a dot in the middle. The circle is life. The dot in the middle of the circle is symbolic of the fact that the Sun is the center of all things in life. The center of life is your identity – the core of your conscious awareness.
☽The Moon’s glyph looks a lot like the moon, which is handy. It is the only glyph without a complete circle in it. Instead the left side of the circle has folded over or reflected to the right so that there are two half circles linked together on the right, making the characteristic crescent moon shape. Why? The Moon is your emotional self, a tricky reflection that creates and satisfies feelings of incompleteness which arise from our interest in a world of dualities.
The half-circle represents evolution. The Moon (emotions) allows evolution in both directions – towards the true self and away from it.
☿Mercury’s glyph is a circle with a cross at the bottom and a half circle at the top. The cross at the bottom shows that Mercury facilitates the effort for the true self to become a real manifestation in the material world. The half circle at the top is unique to Mercury. It shows that he alone can truly facilitate the evolution towards the higher self. This glyph encapsulates in a single symbol the fact that Mercury is your intelligence, which creates the ability to communicate as well as understand.
♀Venus’ glyph is like Mercury’s, without the half circle at the top. She gives you a physical body replete with fascinating senses through which you can truly experience the wonderful manifest world in your life.
♂Mars’ glyph is a circle with an arrow (a distorted cross) at an odd angle towards the top of the circle. This symbolizes that Mars is your energy. He is the passion and ambition which prods you to going off in your own unique direction with your own angle on life.
♃Jupiter’s glyph is a cross supporting the right side of a half circle. The right side of the circle represents evolution towards a deeper understanding of life. Jupiter is supportive of this effort. He encourages it and rewards it and provides the systems of religion, philosophy, and law which do the same.
♄Saturn’s glyph is a cross to which the right side of the circle is affixed and bound. The evolution towards a deeper understanding of life is nailed to the inescapable realities which Saturn generates: death, old age, decay and misery. We evolve by coming to grips with these realities.
☊Rahu’s glyph has no cross. In fact only the five real planets have crosses and represent effort. The Sun, Moon and the two nodes Rahu and Ketu are not literally planets. Their glyphs contain no crosses. They manifest their nature without any effort or evolution required.
Rahu and Ketu are the only planets to contain two complete circles. Their glyphs consist of these two circles joined by the arc of a half circle. The two circles represent two different lives, two different worlds. Rahu’s arc connects the two – bridging the present to the future, creating the ability and need to move upward and outward, and causing the possibility of nearly instantaneous change and movement.
☋Ketu’s glyph is identical to Rahu’s except that Ketu connects the two circles with a downward arc, while Rahu does so with an upward arc. This glyph symbolizes Ketu’s essential nature as a like between the present and the past, the ability and need to move inward and downward with the possibility of nearly instantaneous change and movement in those directions.
♈Aries is the beginning of the zodiac – where the one (at the bottom) splits and becomes many (at the top). This symbolizes the tremendous energy and ambition of life itself.
♉In Taurus the energy forms a stable unit (a circle) which is like a womb for the new energy of life. The circular womb will cause things to grow and develop upwards (the half circle at the top).
♊ Gemini is the sign in which the incubated energy of creation is born and becomes a distinctly separate being. The many created at the beginning by Aries have developed by the support of taurus, and now become a second being, a truly individual self capable of its own experiences and ideas.
♋ In Cancer there are two circles attempting to connect. The new being of Gemini finds that she wishes to integrate her new self with her former self. Therefore Cancer is a place where energy directs inwards and emotions are examined rather privately.
♌ Leo begins a new cycle of evolution – the evolution to understand our own powers. A newly integrated single circle moves sets out with a new identity.
♍Virgo‘s glyph like taurus, creates circles. The three lines of the “m” represent the three layers of the world. The last line of the “m” weaves around itself, creating circular environments. In Virgo the newfound personal power of Leo enters these circles and attempts to more deeply and practically understand and express itself.
♎ Libra‘s glyph evokes both a balance and an equal sign. It shows a balance of desire to work equally with the world as well as on it. In Libra we attempt to achieve the delicate balance between our own personal strength and the personal strengths possessed by the other people in the world, to whom we relate.
♏ In Scorpio we complete the mastery of our own powers. Thus an arrow develops at the end of the three lines – the three layers of the world. This shows that we and now ready to move to a new stage and apply our newly understood personal power on a higher level.
♐Sagittarius’ glyph shows the arrow which appeared in Scorpio moving beyond the line of the “new level” of operation. Thus, in this sign we begin to truly explore the various ways in which we can develop ourselves on higher levels.
♑Capricorn’s glyph, like Taurus and Virgo before it, possesses circles. The straight lines from Sagittarius resolve into curves which create circles. This glyph shows that the new levels we discovered in Sagittarius can now enter a safe “womb” and incubate here to become more deeply and stably realized.
♒ The glyph of Aquarius, like Gemini and Libra before it, is dominated by two lines. These lines are wavy, showing that Capricorn’s effort to evolve a deeper understanding of life are now vibrant with power and potential.
♓ Pisces‘ glyph is two half circles bound together by a line. In Pisces we reach the end of one cycle of evolution. The new levels we discovered in Sagittarius, developed in Capricorn and expressed in Aquarius are now ready in Pisces to bear their final, deepest fruit: the ability to transfer us to an entirely new cycle of evolution. One of the half circles is the end of the old cycle. The line is Pisces effort to transport us to the other half circle, the beginning of a new cycle of evolution.
First things first. What is “exaltation” anyway?
Background: What is a Sign? What is a Planet?
Here is the metaphor that will help you make sense of the whole thing: The whole starry sky is a wilderness of energy. Wilderness is a wild area uninhabited by people. But in the wilderness there are places that people do occupy. Those are the “developed” areas. In the starry sky, there is similarly a specific area that is is inhabited by “people” – it is called the “Zodiac” – the “people” inhabiting this band of stars are the planets.
So that is part two of the metaphor: (1) The stars are places, some wild, but the ones in the zodiac are cultivated and developed, civilized places. (2) The planets are people.
The planets always move. In astrology this is actually what makes them different from “stars.” As they move through the 12 areas of the Zodiac, the “12 signs,” they are just like people traveling through different countries. Each person has a unique personality – and so does each planet. Each person has a purpose, and so does each planet.
Each planet has a primary mission in your life – a primary role to play in the development of humanity and human beings like you and me.
What is an “Exaltation Sign”?
Remember the metaphor: the signs are places. What are places? I mean, how do places affect people? Because, that is what we are really interested in. We want to know how the signs affect the planets, and to understand this, we just need to ask ourselves how places affect people.
Places affect people by providing resources!
Different places provide different resources. Bars, for example, give good resources for getting drunk and finding cheap sex. Schools, supposedly at least, provide very different resources. If you are a person who wants to study and learn, you will be a little bit “debilitated” if circumstances have you constantly in bars. Bars are not places that provide the resources you need for the mission you want to accomplish. But you would be “exalted” if you were instead in a place that is a classroom in a very good school! That place would provide fantastic resources for your mission.
Now you can easily understand why certain zodiac signs make some planets “exalted” and other planets “debilitated.” To state it explicitly, “exaltation signs” are places in the zodiac which give a specific planet the ideal resources to accomplish its primary goal. “Debilitation sign” are exactly the opposite – the are the signs with the resources that actually frustrate and hamper the planet’s main goal.
Why is Jupiter Exalted in Cancer
Because Jupiter is a person, and Cancer is the place which gives Jupiter the best resources to fulfill his primary mission. Why Cancer? First you have to get to know the person named “Jupiter.”
In a nutshel, Jupiter’s mission is to help you expand your horizons, grow and become bigger and better – so that you can achieve true happiness and eventually enlightenment. You can break Jupiter’s mission down into two components: (1) happiness leading to self-realization / enlightenment. (2) growth and expansion.
Because Jupiter is interested in promoting emotional happiness and eventual self-realization he does very well in any sign created by the water element. [You might want to learn the role the elements play in creating the signs] The Water element provides resources that are reflective and thus encourage self-knowing in a non-rigid, fluid, emotional and intuitive way. And thus the water element leads from self-knowing to emotional happiness to eventual self-realization and enlightenment.
Obviously, water is a great resource for Jupiter, then – because his mission to to help you achieve happiness which results in the enlightenment of self-realization!
There are three signs made from the element of water: Cancer, Scorpio, and Pisces. Why is Cancer the sign set aside as being “exalting” for Jupiter? Why not Scorpio or Pisces?
To answer this understand that the signs are made not only from “elements” like earth, water, fire and air – but also from “modes” like Cardinal, Fixed, and Dual. [You might also want to learn about the modes of the zodiac signs.] In a nutshell, the Cardinal mode help things expand and grow (reaching out to the four “cardinal” directions). The Fixed mode helps things become strong and solid. The Dual mode helps things become more open to possibilities.
Cancer is the cardinal water sign. Scorpio the fixed water sign. Pisces is the dual water sign.
All three of them are water, so they are all really nice places for Jupiter, they give Jupiter good resources to bring about happiness and enlightenment. But the fixed nature of Scorpio puts a limit on the other aspect of Jupiter’s prime mission: to grow, enlarge, and expand! So Scorpio is a great sign for Jupiter, but is not the “exaltation sign” of Jupiter, because it gives resources that frustrate Jupiter’s goal of expansion.
How about Pisces? Pisces is dual which makes one open to possibilities. This is really good for jupiter too. Pisces is a fantastic sign for Jupiter to occupy. But Cancer is his exaltation sign, not Pisces. Why?
Although Pisces is great, Cancer is even better, because Cancer is cardinal. The cardinal energy is an ideal resource for Jupiter to use in the pursuit of his mission of expansion and growth! So Cancer is the sign with the best resources for all the aspects of Jupiter’s mission.
You also can learn something important about the difference between Pisces and Cancer by considering a third important ingredient of a zodiac sign. Zodiac signs have four important ingredients:
(1) Elemental nature
(2) Mode of operation
(3) Planetary ruler
(4) Natural house order
Jupiter owns Pisces, and the Moon owns Cancer. This is another reason why Cancer is an even better place for Jupiter than Pisces. Huh? That sounds backwards? No, there is a very important lesson to learn here! You may be as great as a planet, but you never achieve your zenith of potential except in partnership with other people. It is in cooperation with the energies of other people that we can rise to greater heights than we can on our own. And this is yet another factor making Cancer, not Pisces, the exaltation sign of Jupiter.
If Sidereal is the accurate Astrology…
Why is the Tropical method the one most people use? And why do I relate so much more to my tropical chart.
Sidereal is “accurate” in the mathematical sense – the positions of the planets in a sidereally calculated chart are REALLY where they are in the REAL sky. It doesn’t necessarily mean that non-sidereal calculations are *interpretively* inaccurate.
The reason why you feel that tropical is the system most people use is because of your own cultural background. If you went to China almost NOBODY there would have any idea what you were talking about with a tropical chart – and China is certainly a large country with a very important history pertaining to the science of astrology. If you went to India, EVERYONE would be using the sidereal zodiac. India is also a huge country with an extremely important role in the history of astrology. So in other words, Tropical astrology seems so dominant to you because of where you live.
It’s like if you stood in downtown Brooklyn and said, “Well supposedly American’s talk with a Texas accent. But if that’s true why don’t I hear it from anyone?”
As for your relating to tropical astrology more than sidereal astrology. You should realize that this may just be due to the fact that you been thinking along the lines of what your Tropical chart has said for a very long time. New information is usually difficult to grasp simply because it is new. The sidereal chart is showing you new information. Also please realize that you are not doing sidereal astrology just by converting your tropical chart to a sidereal zodiac! When you do a sidereal chart it is not very helpful unless you look at it from a sidereal perspective. There is a reason why both sidereal and tropical astrology can yeild accurate results: because they both have systems of interpretation developed around them which maximize their strengths. So to take your chart and set it to sidereal, but continue to look at it through a tropical system will just wind up being confusing. And really this is why many people walk away from sidereal astrology saying, “it doesn’t work.” or “It doesn’t make sense.” or “It doesn’t seem to apply to me.”
Gemini’s compatible with Libras and Aquarians???
Why do they say that Geminis (me) are compatible with Libras & Aquas cause I know a lot of Libras & Aquas and I was with a Libra and trust me, didn’t work for me.
It will help you a lot if you realize that astrology consists not just of one “sign”. It consists of at least 9 planets in 12 possible signs. In compatibility and relationships, 4 of them are very important:
- The Ascendant (Rising Sign) is very important for practical compatibility
- The Moon (Moon Sign) for emotional compatibility, VERY important
- Venus for sensual compatibility
- The Sun for ideological compatibility, the least important of the 4
The fact of the matter is that Gemini is compatible with the other air signs, Libra and Aquarius. And has spontaneous attraction to the opposite, fire sign, Sagittarius (though they may hate that fact). However when you say “Joe is Aquarius” you are just refering to the sign of his Sun. His Sun may be in a position that is compatible with your Sun, but you will still feel him to be a total jerk if his Moon, and/or Ascendant and/or Venus are in positions that are incompatible with yours.
Think about it for a while, it will make complete sense. I hope this helps.
I’m a Leo. Why is it so difficult for me to see any value in Cancers?
Because Cancer is the 12th House in relation to Leo.
I happen to love cancers and all sorts of people, and I would suggest that you need to deepen your understanding of astrology to help you deepen your understanding of people.
What if you were STUCK in an elevator with a GEMINI?
What would you do???
Just enjoy it. Gemini would come up with some game to play, or something. After a while they might freak out at being held in one place for so long. Then I would probably get the chance to talk and say something practical and stabilizing (Capricorn) =)
- Vic DiCara