Consize Astrology lessons

Part 3.

Contents: 9-How the signs can be subdidided. 10-Root meanings of the houses. 11-The house cusps. 12-Strong and weak placements of the planets. 13-Combining horoscope factors. 14-The horoscope analysis. 15-Transits. 16-Comparisons of horoscopes. 17-Suggested literature.

(Click here for lesson 1, here forlesson 2,, here for Dutch lessons.

8. How the signs can be subdivided.

A: General: In the first 6 signs the growth and development of the "me", the "me alone"" is central, in the next 6 signs there is more weight on the relationship with others, the "me together with others".

B: Furthermore the signs are divided in 4 elements (fire, earth, air, water) and 3 crosses (cardinal, fixed and mutable).

B1: Signs of the same element generally work together harmoniously. And signs of different elements get along together better, if they understand their differences. An air sign will say: "I think that ..", is more distant and therefore more objective; a water sign will say: "I feel that ..", is more intens and therefore more subjective. An Earth sign will say: "I see, observe that .., sees what is, is more pragmatic; a fire sign will say: "my intuition tells me that .." is more idealistic and knows on the basis of intuition. As long as one knows the different ways to come to a conclusion, one can better understand people of the other elements, know why and how they reach a certain conclusion.

The 4 elements are:

Fire (intuition): the signs Aries, Leo, Sagittarius - enthusiasm, intuition, instant conclusions, 6th sense, romance, dramatisation, dreams about goals. Looking ahead, seeing unlimited possibilities; optimisme, vision.
The shadow: Problems with daily reality; no understanding for the sluggish, limiting body, which may also affect sexuality; Objects are not interesting if not a symbol for something bigger with meaning. Fear for discipline.

Earth (perceiving): the signs Taurus, Virgo, Capricorn - devotion, thesensory, world of matter, the perceptible. Solid, trusyworthy, pragmatic. Mastering the now and work with it. The corporal, order and discipline.
The shadow: Afraid of taking risks and failure and therefore suppressing dreams and phantasy. Sticking to dogmas; difficulty to accept changes and chaos, possessiveness; not a natural player of games, of being childlike, intuitive.

Air (thinking): the signs Gemini, Libra, Aquarius - Participation, contacts. Elusive. I think, therefore I am; reasonable, objective, cautious as wants to think first; logical, wants to explain, distant. Wants to know the why; fnds the experiences of others and him/herself equally interesting. Philosophical, affectionate; believe in human nature. Vision of how things should be.
The shadow: Fear of emotions and feelings, therefore vulnerable and sensitive. The dependent naive child, full of trust, believing in miracles, also moody. Egocentric, can lose the warmth of the heart without noticing.

Water (feeling): the signs Cancer, Scorpio, Pisces - feeling, consciousness. Primitive motivation through the emotions, living in images and symbols. Relating through the feelings. Instinctive, receptive, deep digging, good and bad belong together, taking people as they are. Strong, intense sympathies or feelings of ddislike; operates from the stomack, not from the brains, sees suffering and pain as part of life.
The shadow: difficulty with the rational, reasoning. Looks in first instance not further than the own interior, therefore sometimes unreasonable and "dishonest", may set different standard for self and for others. Meanings in stead of conclusions, manipulating, suffocating.

Fire signs essence: the fear of not being recognised and the need to be recognised.
Earth signs essence: the fear of not being found worthy and the need for being appreciated.
Air signs essence: the fear of not being accepted and the need of being accepted.
Water signs essence: the fear of being misunderstood and the need for understanding.

B2: Signs of the same cross are square to each other and so don't usually work together harmoniously but rather provoke each other.

The 3 crosses are:
Cardinal cross - the signs Aries, Cancer, Libra and Capricorn - energy direction is outwards, towards outside world; outgoing.
Fixed cross - the signs Taurus, Leo, Scorpio and Aquarius - energy direction is inwards, towards the self inside; resistant to change.
Mutable cross - the signs Gemini, Virgo, Sagittarius and Pisces - changing energy direction; adaptable.

An example to combine elements and crosses: Cancer is a feeling sign and outgoing, Scorpio a feeling sign, resistant to change and Pisces a feeling sign and adaptable.

10. Root-meanings of the houses:

ascendant and 1st house (ascendant is the beginning of the 1st house and the place of the horoscope that rises in the East at the time of the first breath, of being born): the personality; contact with the surrounding world, gate through which the personality meets the outside world. Way in which we do things/deal with the ouside
2nd house: values, selfworth, money, possessions.
3rd house: Communications, neighbourhood, neighbours, brothers and sisters, short journeys.
i.c. (imum coeli) and 4th house (i.c. is the beginning of the 4th house and where the sun is at midnight): inner self, soul, origin, the home, the father image, the end.
5th house: self-expression, creativity, being in love, children, giving of love, playing, speculation.
6th house: health, relations on workfloor, working together, service, ordening, analysing.
descendant and 7th house (descendant is beginning of 7th house and place where the sun sets): the other, the partner, mariage, intimate relations, the public.
8th house: values and money of others, sharing together, own unconscious and complexes, transformation, death.
9th house: higher intelligence, studies, morality, learning and spreading of new ideas, travelling, foreign countries.
MC (medium coeli) and 10th house (MC is beginning of 10th house and place where the sun is at midday): society, position in society, profession, mother image.
11th house: expectations, goals, friends, groups, receiving love, profits from worprofession.
12th house: the spiritual, the collective, imagination and creativity, place where the "I" dissolves, isolation.

11. The cusps of the houses.

The beginning of a house we call the cusp of that house. A house, the where, is coloured by the sign on the cusp. This sign also decides which planet will be the ruler of that house. A list of signs and their rulers I gave already in lesson 1. One could call the rulers the representatives of all matters relating to their house. Is the ruler in strong position and does he have good aspects, then he will represent the house well; the matters of that house have the wind behind; is the ruler in weak position or does he have difficult aspects, then he will be less capable to represent the house and house matters will meet difficulties.

Also, if the ruler of a house is in another house, the matters of the house ruled will be connected with the house the ruler is in.

An example: Someone has his 7th house (relating, partner) cusp in Aries (energy): that person may look for an Aries-like partner full of fire; the own energy may not be well developped and can take the energy of the partner as an example. Or: that person may actually be very energetic or even agressive himself, be it in a kind of hidden way, in his/her way of relating. The partners may fight or work together for a common goal. If the ruler of the 7th, Mars, is in the 10th house (society), the partner (7th house) has to help with that person's career (10th house). Another example: someone has the cusp of the 10th house (society, profession) in Cancer (taking care of, nurturing): this person wants to nurture others when he is in contact with society and possibly will work in a hospital or other nurturing profession. And/or make his/her office a homely place. If the ruler of the 10th, Moon, is in the 7th house (partner), he/she may marry a nurse or physician.

12-Strength and weakness of planets.

I suggest readers not to pay too much attention to this subject untill they have some astrological experience and have learnt how to combine horoscope factors. However, I will mention here the 2 ways in which planets can be classified as stronger or weaker, as performing more of less effectively:
1: planets placed in the 1st, 10th, 7th and 4th house (the "corner" houses are strongest then planets in the 2nd, 5th, 8th en 11th huis and again weaker planets placed in the 3rd, 6th, 9th and 12th house.
2: planets placed in their own sign (the sign they rule) can act best; they are "in their element" are like the king in his palace, the person who has the power. When they are placed in the opposite sign they don't feel well, are reduced to spectator, are the unwanted guest. Planets in signs they feel at home in, where they are respected guests, dignified, will come forward quite well.

An example: Mars in Aries performs very well; the God of War walks on a battlefield, likes being there and feels fine. But in the opposite sign, Libra, the same Mars has to relate, to be diplomatic, listen to others, all of which he does not do well and does not like. With Venus it is the other way around; this charming, friendly, beauty-loving Goddess does not feel at home at all on the battlefield, in Aries, but will be in her element in harmonious, beautiful surroundings, in Libra. The Sun will be at its best in Leo, where he can express himself freely and be on stage, be there right now, be the boss, but that same Sun will be somewhat held back in opposite Aquarius, where he has to act distant, has to think about the future, be aloof, all of which is not his favourate behaviour.

13-Combining and really making the horoscope factors come alive.

There are a great number of so-called recipe-books, in which one can find descriptions for all kind of combinations; I suggest the reader to first experiment by himself with the root-meanings and never to forget, that the signs are the "how", the planets are the "what" and the houses are the "where". See the planets as Gods and also as persons with human traits. Sun, Moon and Ascendant are often most important, but all planets have their role. After having written down root meanings of all combinations and then having enlarged upon those with imagination and having written down a story, one can always look in a recipe-book to see, what others have made of it. The planets, the Gods are in fact what Jung called Archetypes. When enlarging on meanings, one should take care, though, not to write down things that are in contradiction with the root meanings, with the Archetype. One can compare what one has found in the horoscopes of oneself, partners, friends, with what one knows about oneself, those partners, friends. Although surprises may be there, as one may suddenly see things well hidden in the interior, which one did not expect. In the beginning it is better to write down rather too much than too little; as one gets more experienced, one learns to bring back the notes of possibly 5 pages to 1 or 2 A4 pages.

14-De horoscoop analysis.

There are different ways to start the analysis and explanation. Each one may try to find his/her own favourate.
1: One may start with ascendant in sign and its aspects, then sun, then moon, venus, mars, jupiter, sarurn, each in its sign, house and its aspects, then uranus, neptune and pluto in houses and aspects (these planets stay too long in one sign to take this factor for a personal character analysis). An aspect of for instance sun and pluto will be described under the sun and should not be taken again under pluto.
2: Another way is to start with the first house, the sign on it, the planets in it with their sign, their being in the first house, their aspects, then the second house with the sign on its cusp, the planets in it with their sign, their being in the second house, their aspects, etc. etc. for all houses.
The sequence I used (and which I personally like) is: Ascendant sign; ascendant aspects; Moon sign, house, aspects; Mercurius sign, house, aspects; Mars sign, house, aspects; Jupiter sign, house, aspects; saturn aspects, Uranus house, aspecten; Neptune house, aspects, Pluto house, aspects; MC sign, aspects; Venus sign, house, aspects; Sun sign, house, aspects; Saturnus house. Also here aspects are taken under the first heading and do not need to be repeated.


Transits are the angles, the aspects, which the planets, as they are in the sky now, (or at the dates one wants to investigate) make with the planets and ascendant of the natal horoscope, the radix. They show which outside energies shine on which energies, which points in one's horoscope and therefore how they influence someone. Once you know these currents of energy and where they touch someone, you can explain that person what is happening and why and so he/she can better cope with the moods, difficulties or chances that are coming his/her way and so get the most out of these transit periods. The radix, the birth horoscope will always remain the basis of one's character, the transits are happenings, changes in one's life, can be periods of learning.
Transits of the fast moving Sun, Moon, Mercurius and Venus cover a very short period, may only last part of a day (moon) or about one day and therefore are not that important. The transits of Mars, Jupiter, Saturn, Uranus, Neptune en Pluto contain ever longer periods; a Mars transit may just last a week but a Pluto transit may last 2 years. The longer the period of the transit, the more one feels the effect. For the transits over Ascendant and MC one has to be pretty sure of the time of birth as with a different birth time the actual Ascendant and MC may be at different places. Transits over the Ascendant may affect health, transits over the MC may affect the professional life.
One might say that with transits over planets the functioning, the "what" of that planet is challenged. While some transits may be extreemly taxing, we cannot really say that there are bad or good transits but rather that some are very challenging, others more harmonic. One is forced,either by interior stress or by outside happenings, to pay attention to the touched energies or domain of life. And it is very important how one reacts to one's transits; as one has more knowledge of what is happening, one can react better.

To look at the transits of the present moment, one takes one's own horoscope and that on the outside one places the planets as they are now. It is rather easy to see what planets on the outside touches planets, makes aspects with planets on the inside. Nowadays computer programs will do that for you. One could also say, that the Godsof the "now" ask questions to the Gods of the personality.

As an example: if the Saturn of the "now" touches/conjuncts the natal Sun, there will be saturnal questions about your selfexpression, about your grows into what you want to be, to become, about how you have taken responsibility about your life, your goals. With transitts we don't look at the aspects of one horoscope but at the aspects from one horoscope to another horoscope. The root-meanings, however, remain the same, be it, that the direction is from transit planet towards natal planet or horoscope point, and that we take smaller orbs (just a few degrees) of the aspects.

The computer programs also give you transits over longer periods.

You can find an example of transit explanations in Dutch at transitsterren.

16-Synastry, the comparison of the charts of two persons. Here we not only look at each chart, but, like with transits, we look at the two charts at the same time. The difference with transits, though, is that the direction is not only from one chart (transits) to the other, but that in this case we look at the direction of aspects from both charts to the other chart.

We make a similar picture as with transits, when we want to see how people interact: one chart around the other and then look at the aspects both charts make to the other chart.

Example: If the Jupiter of one person is on the same sign and degree as the Sun of the other person, the growth and development (Jupiter) of the one person are "fired", activated, supported (Sun) by the other person and the selfexpression and life-goal (Sun) of the other person are developped, expanded by the first person. If that planet of the first person would not be Jupiter but Saturn in contact with the other person's Sun, the story and the mutual contact would be quite different!

17. Recommended literature:

-Liz Greene - Star signs for lovers. This well-known astrologer and psycho-analyticus gives a wonderful description of the elements and signs as the work in Synastry. Also her other books on astrology are excellent.
-Corn. Gorter - Planetenloop en mensenlot. Oud/soms ouderwets astrologie boek met hier en daar wat zwartwit uitspraken, maar nog steeds zeer leerzaam en interessant. Volkomen de moeite waard.
-Jaap Huibers - de horoscoop-tekening. Ankertjes serie. Klein maar duidelijk boekje over de horoscoop berekening.
-Linda Goodman - Sun signs. Funny and interesting with marvellous descriptions of the signs in us, also as partner, biss, child etc. with good examples
-Margaret E. Hone - The modern text-book of astrology. Complete book for the (beginning) student of astrology; works also with root-meanings.
-Noel Tyl - The principles and practice of astrology. (seriesof 12 volumes). Treats all astrological subhects in a clear way. Easy to understand.
-Grant Lewi - Astrology for the millions. A classic with samples of well-known people.
-Martin Schulman - de ascendant, your karmic doorway. Wonderful, deeply revealing descriptions of the ascendant in the signs.
-Robert Hand - Planets in sign, house and aspect. Clear descriptions. Probably the best "recipe"book.

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© Hans van Rossum 2003.

Contact: Hans-Van.Rossum@nospamhetnet.nl but leave out the word nospam

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