People have it backwards, completely backwards, when they think that the visual symbolism of the zodiac signs created the meanings ascribed to those signs. Lets be real, the zodiac signs are just dots. You could as easily make the three dots of Aries into a snake as you could make them into a ram. You could as easily connect the virgo dots to draw a picture of a giraffe as you could to create the picture of a virgin carrying wheat and fire.
The real fact is that the ancient seers connected the dots in the ways that they did simply as a mnemonic tool to help people understand the nature of the energies that existed within that area of the stars. Virgo, for example, is the root of the word “virgin.” Whatever you think of the word, the original meaning is “unmarried.”
Virgo, means “unmarried woman.”
Why this symbolism for this part of the sky?
Virgo belongs to Mercury. It is the only sign in the entire zodiac whose ruling planet is exalted in it. When Virgo rises, it is the 1st House. This means that it is the only sign whose ruler is exalted in the 1st House. The first house is the house of self. This tells you that Virgo’s can derive strength from themselves. They must rely on themselves.
The sign opposite to the exaltation sign is always the debilitation sign. So, since Mercury exalts in Virgo, it debilitates in Pisces. Now, Pisces is the 7th sign / 7th house from Virgo. The 7th house is the house of others – of partners, of spouse. Virgo’s ruler is strongest when in the house representing the self, but weakest in the house representing the partner or the spouse. Therefore the sign itself is predisposed towards being able to support herself, but not getting strength from her partner.
Individual’s born under Virgo will have this inherent trait amplified, muted, modified, etc. depending on where among the stars Virgo’s ruler (Mercury) was when the individual was born. And different modifications on these themes will manifest at different times during the individuals life, based on the planetary cycles and transits, But regardless, this inherent trait is at least a latent potential or underlying theme for all those born when Virgo rose in the East.
And how about this wheat and fire in the Virgin’s hands?
As you may remember from my other articles, planets have friendships and enmities with one another. There are two basic camps: the “authorities” and the “rebels.” Mercury, being an intellectual communicator, sides more with the rebels. The other rebels are Venus (the artist) and Saturn (the anti-authority).
Signs derive strength from their friends, and weakness from their enemies. Saturn, being a friend to Mercury, is inherently a friend of those born under Mercury’s signs. Virgo is one of these signs.
Saturn owns Capricorn and Aquarius. These are the 5th and 6th signs / houses from Virgo. This means that Virgo gets friendly energy from a combination of the 5th and 6th houses (The 6th house is the more predominant of the two, since Virgo is the 6th sign of the zodiac). So Virgo’s intellect (5th House) is used to serve others (6th house), especially to help them with health issues, or dealing with overcoming their obstacles in life (health and obstacles being the major significations of the 6th house).
Virgo’s other friend is Venus, who owns Libra and Taurus – these being the 2nd and 9th signs / houses from Virgo. So Virgo gets more positive energy from this direction. The 2nd House is about things which support us in a physical and practical sense. The 9th House is about morality. Virgo gets these two combining in a positive way for her. Therefore she is interested in morals and ethics mainly in so far as they are very practical and actually support the real and tangible needs of people and herself.
– Vic DiCara