The Zodiac Wheel

 

The zodiac wheel spins round and round year in year out. Like the Moon’s phases and Mother Earth’s seasons there’s no beginning and no end. It has always been and will always continue to be.

In our modern western world, where death is seen as the final end and rebirth is impossible, the concept of “no beginning” is a difficult one to understand and accept. For that reason western astrology starts the wheel with Aries on the spring equinox and ends it with Pisces just before that date. However, the old belief of the never-ending wheel, the continuity of life through rebirth, is retained, as inevitably and forever more Aries comes after Pisces. The wheel keeps on spinning.

The 12 signs of the zodiac are categorised into the four elements they belong to: Earth, Water, Air and Fire. These alternate throughout the year: Fire followed by Earth followed by Air followed by Water followed by Fire, and so on and so forth. Each season is started off by a different element: Spring – Fire, Summer – Water, Autumn – Air and Winter – Earth.

Similarly the 12 signs are categorised into three modes: Cardinal, Fixed and Mutable. Again, these alternate throughout the year and each season follows the same pattern: Cardinal – Fixed – Mutable.

As there are 12 signs, four elements with three signs each and three modes, each elemental group includes a cardinal, a fixed and a mutable sign.

Fire

Aries – Cardinal – Spring
Leo – Fixed
Sagittarius – Mutable

Water

Cancer – Cardinal – Summer
Scorpio – Fixed
Pisces – Mutable

Air

Libra – Cardinal – Autumn
Aquarius – Fixed
Gemini – Mutable

Earth

Capricorn – Cardinal – Winter
Taurus – Fixed
Virgo – Mutable

Some astrologers have tried to organise the 12 signs into developmental stages that mirror the seasons or “age” of the year. Aries, being the first sign at the spring equinox, represents birth, while Pisces, the last sign, represents transcenscion to a higher plane. [1] As with the Fool’s developmental journey through the Tarot’s Major Arcanas, the 12 signs of the zodiac can also be read as a journey to enlightenment.

Another way to organise the 12 signs is in terms of the issues they concern themselves with. As the year progresses the signs are increasingly concerned with matters further away from the immediate environment. The first four signs after the spring equinox – Aries, Taurus, Gemini and Cancer – tend to focus on matters that are of concern primarily to themselves such as starting projects, building things, making friends and looking after their own territory. The next four signs – Leo, Virgo, Libra and Scorpio – focus mostly on issues within their larger community, such as leading others, working with others, mediating between different parties and investigating life’s mysteries. Finally, the last four signs – Sagittarius, Capricorn, Aquarius and Pisces – tend to be concerned with universal often abstract matters such as freedom, traditions, humanitarianism and spiritual enlightenment.

NOTE

[1] According to Geraldine Thorsten in God Herself in the original zodiac Taurus was the first sign at the spring equinox and Aries the last one.

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4 Comments (+add yours?)

  1. Mama Rosemary
    Feb 04, 2013 @ 18:23:18

    The wheel with goddess energies is great! Love it!

    Reply

  2. Mama Rosemary
    Feb 04, 2013 @ 18:23:54

    Oh, is there a way to sign up and follow your blog? I would love to…
    Thanks

    Reply

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