The Root Meanings of the Nine Planets
Unedited first draft of a very early chapter in my next book…
As I briefly mentioned in the Introduction, planets are the few unusual celestial lights that move around while all others stay in their respective places. We can immediately see seven of them: The Sun, Moon, Mercury, Venus, Mars, Jupiter, and Saturn.
Another thing we see in the sky, sometimes, are eclipses. Eclipses are caused by two shadows: that of the Earth that of that of the Moon. These shadows move, relative to the movement of the Sun and Moon, so astrology treats them practically as if they were two more planets. Indian Astrology names them Rahu and Ketu, bringing the count of astrological planets to nine.
[extraPlanets]: There may be more or less than nine planets out there in the void of space, but astrology is not really about the void of space. It is about life on Earth. It is a way for the universe to communicate with human beings, and the messages it sends are intended to be understandable using the tools naturally available to every human being: a brain and eyes. So I strongly believe that astrology should concern itself only with those nine planets we can naturally see with our naked eyes.
The nine planets represent the nine key components of human life.
- Sun = Soul
- Moon = Mind
- Mercury = Brain
- Venus = Senses
- Mars = Strength
- Jupiter = Positive experience
- Saturn = Negative experience
- Rahu = Extroversion
- Ketu = Introversion
It might be helpful to note that the visible appearance of each planet is the cause of it’s symbolism.
- The Sun radiates light and warmth, granting sight and fostering life. So it represents the source of sentience (“sight”) and vitality (“life”): the soul.
- The Moon reflects light and constantly changes. It represents the part of us that reflects upon the world, and experience ever-changing emotions as a result: the mind.
- Mercury is so close to the Sun that it is barely visible. It represents the brain’s intelligence because intelligence is the closest companion to the sentient soul, barely distinguishable from it.
- Venus is so bright, it is practically the most beautiful light in the sky. So it represents the senses, which always seek the pleasure of experiencing beauty.
- Mars is red and wanders from its orbit more erratically than any other planet. So it represents strength and what strength grants: power and independence.
- Jupiter, like Venus, is outstandingly bright and beautiful. While Venus represents beauty that we can perceive with our senses, Jupiter represents beauty that we conceive: wisdom, particularly wisdom gained by positive experiences.
- Saturn is very slow and very dim. Thus it represents negative, difficult experiences imposed by being held back and limited.
Rahu and Ketu cause eclipses so they symbolize changes to how the inner self shines and reflects upon the ourself. They exist 180º opposite from one another, so they symbolize polar opposites. Essentially, Rahu represents the extroverted way of interacting with the world, and Ketu the introverted way.
Now I’ll devotee a chapter to explaining each meaning and the most important implied meanings that branch out from it.