The sun, moon, and planets each embody the energy of a specific sign in the natural zodiac — a physical representation of the sign’s inherent qualities. We all have a unique natal chart that tells us precisely where in the sky each planet and constellation was positioned at the moment we were born. For example, while Mars traditionally rules Aries, this fiery planet may have been in Capricorn when you were born. This means that you personally filter all those classic Martian characteristics through a Capricornian lens.
Also keep in mind, the inner planets — sun, moon, Mercury, Mars, and Venus — move quickly through the zodiac, which means they affect us on a more personal, intimate level. The outer planets — Jupiter, Saturn, Neptune, Uranus, Pluto — take seven years or more to move through the zodiac, which explains why each generation can be identified by a specific movement or feeling (the Roaring ’20s, Age of Aquarius, and so on).
Your personal astrology is based off your natal chart, constructed from the date, time, and place of your birth.
Your Sun sign is who you are becoming in this life time. Your time here will be vastly spent learning to balance the light and shadow of this sign.
Your Moon sign represents your emotional life. This sign will tell you how your emotions run and what will be affecting them.
Your Rising, or Ascendant, is your mask, your personality. It’s how you present yourself in the world.
Your North and South Nodes represent your soul destiny. What you should be moving towards, and what you should be releasing in this lifetime.
For more info on planets and what they govern, see below.
Home Sign: Leo
Governs: Ego and sense of self.
The sun is the source of our ego; it’s where the truth of our nature resides, where our identities are forged. When someone says “what’s your sign?” they’re actually asking “what’s your sun sign?” You are who you are because of your sun sign, and truly understanding and accepting this integral part of yourself helps you lead a positive, well-rounded life.
Home Sign: Cancer
Governs: Emotion and feeling.
The Moon represents our deepest personal needs, our basic habits and reactions, and our unconscious. Where the Sun acts, the Moon re-acts. If your sun sign represents your outward personality, your moon sign focuses inward, revealing your emotional core. It determines how you process your feelings and moods, and understanding how your sun and moon signs interact reveals a much fuller astrological self-portrait.
Home Signs: Virgo, Gemini
Governs: Transmitting information.
Mercury is the messenger, the planet of day-to-day expression and communication. Mercury’s action is to take things apart and put them back together again. It is an opportunistic planet, decidedly unemotional and curious. Your intelligence resides within your Mercury sign, and it governs our ability to communicate, explain, and understand. Your Mercury sign informs how you listen, read, write, and talk, so understanding how your Mercury sign works can help you understand how best you’re able to learn and teach. This also explains why Mercury in retrograde means miscommunications.
Home Signs: Libra, Taurus
Governs: Love and beauty.
Our Venus sign determines how we give and receive love, and it’s where we find comfort and support within ourselves and others. Venus rules all the delightful, swoon-worthy, aesthetically pleasing things in life. In understanding your Venus sign, you open yourself up to truly fulfilling relationships because you’re able to articulate what you need and can also give what your loved ones need. Venus has dual rulership over Libra and Taurus. As a result, Venus represents two main areas of our life: love and money. Venus rules our sentiments, what we value, and the pleasure we take in life. Grace, charm, and beauty are all ruled by Venus. Through Venus, we learn about our tastes, pleasures, artistic inclinations, and what makes us happy.
Home Sign: Aries
Function: Will and courage.
Fiery and passionate, Mars governs how we assert ourselves — our “fight” in the “fight or flight” battle. Mars rules our animal instincts for aggression, anger, and survival. Our sexual desires come under the rule of Mars. Whereas Venus rules romantic attraction, Mars is most associated with basic body attraction. This is the planet of action rather than reaction. With Mars, there is no contemplation before action. The drive associated with Mars differs from that of the Sun in that it is self-assertion rather than the assertion of the will; it is raw energy rather than creative energy. It’s here that we can fall into aggression and volatility, but if harnessed correctly, our Mars sign can be our greatest source of bravery and self-empowerment. You can find incredible freedom and independence within your Mars sign, as well, so if you’re feeling stuck or passive, turn here first.
Home Sign: Sagittarius
Function: Abundance and generosity.
This giant planet fuels all sorts of positive optimism in our lives, and is considered to be the planet of miracles, hope, and opportunity. Jupiter just wants you to grow as a person by experiencing new things, and if you take care to listen to your Jupiter sign, you’ll surely reap the benefits. Jupiter is a planet of plenty. It is tolerant and expansive. The first of the social planets, Jupiter seeks insight through knowledge. Some of this planet’s keywords include morality, gratitude, hope, honor, and the law. Jupiter is a planet of broader purpose, reach, and possibility. Jupiter has generally been associated with good luck and bounty. Optimism and growth (including mental and spiritual growth) come under its rule.
Home Sign: Capricorn
Function: Discipline and commitment.
Saturn is associated with restriction and limitation. Where Jupiter expands, Saturn constricts. Although the themes of Saturn seem depressing, Saturn brings structure and meaning to our world. Saturn knows the limits of time and matter. Saturn reminds us of our boundaries, our responsibilities, and our commitments. It brings definition to our lives. Saturn makes us aware of the need for self-control and of boundaries and our limits.
Home Sign: Aquarius
Function: Individuality and change.
The energies of Uranus are electric and crammed with change. Uranus is forward-looking. It balks at tradition and celebrates originality and individuality. Uranus is associated with technology, innovation, discovery, and all that is progressive.
Uranus is an outer planet and spends about seven years in each sign, taking 84 years to fully orbit the sun, which, as mentioned earlier, means that there are large groups of people who share a Uranus sign. For instance, the Age of Aquarius — the peaceful protesters who spent their time enacting positive change in the ’60s, these people all had Uranus in Aquarius, and radical change, questioning authority, and championing individuality are all astrological hallmarks of Uranus.
And just to note, if you get in the habit of pronouncing this planet as u-RAH-nus, you can avoid the inner snickers other pronunciations can cause.
Home Sign: Pisces
Function: Intuition and healing.
Neptune is here to help you step away from your ego and away from awareness, and to exist in the in-between. Neptune is the deep deep and represents inspiration, dreams, psychic receptivity, illusion, and confusion. Neptune rules spirituality, and all things subtle. It’s all about uncovering your soul and developing your spiritual awareness, whatever that means to you.
Home Sign: Scorpio
Function: Transformation and power.
Pluto reigns over our destinies, giving life to our biggest desires while simultaneously reminding us of how short life is, so we better do something memorable while we’re here. Traditionally, Pluto is known as the planet of death and is likened to the Tower card in the Tarot. Whatever Pluto is focused on, either in your chart personally or on the collective, it’s bringing a death and rebirth to it. It can be a painful process when Pluto is involved, but if we do the work, it’s always well worth the process.