The basics of astrology: Using it as a tool for introspection

Astrology with Josée-Anne SC You’ve probably heard someone say something like, “That’s such a Pisces trait” or “I repel people who come into my life because I’m a Capricorn, and there’s nothing I can do about it.” Well, here’s the good news: we’re not prisoners to our astrological signs or ascendants! Quite the opposite. Far from creating rigid categories that define who we are, astrology is more of a tool for getting to know ourselves better. But where do we get started in the infinite universe of astrology? In this article, Josée-Anne shares the basics of astrology, which, in her personal experience, helped her make peace with several facets of herself and to transcend resistant forces within.  

💡 This article is a summary of the monthly "Red Table Events",organized by Mme L'Ovary. 💡

The Red Table is a space for educational, safe and inclusive discussion to gather and address topics that are still often taboo. The floor is entirely left to the invited experts, as well as to the community present. These discussions reflect opinions and in no case should they be considered as medical recommendations.

Josée-Anne Sarazin-Côté

Author, podcaster, YouTuber, and astrologer, this hippie mom lives in Costa Rica and is quietly learning to live with multiple sclerosis. She’s also a slowpreneur, founder of OUITCH,and passionate about plants, mantras, nature, and, of course, astrology! Josée-Anne SC

Astrology . . . what exactly is it?

For millennia, humans have looked to the stars for answers. As far back as 6000 BC, we knew the orbits of the planets as far out as Saturn. Pretty impressive, right? Different schools of thought approach astrology from different perspectives, but they all share a common goal: profound self-knowledge. In other words, astrology is an extra tool you can use to learn to accept yourself as you are and tame your shadows so you can better cultivate your light. Getting famaliar with the waltzes of the outer universe helps us better understand the movements that animate our interiors. ☽

Step one: Get in touch with your intuition

Let’s face it: in your astrological explorations, you’ll come across a huge variety of information and a plethora of websites. And we’re not going to lie to you – they’ll all say something different! One’ll tell you that Aries are sentient beings, but then another will say that they’re actually self-centered people . . . This is where your intuition comes into play. Before starting your journey into the fascinating world of astrology, it’s essential that you open yourself up to the intelligence of your intuition. The voice that speaks through your body. For example, let’s say you come across some information that explains your moon in Virgo. If it doesn’t resonate within, you might want to forget about it. On the other hand, if you’re reading something that gives you chills, then what you’re feeling is the cells in your body vibrating in approval: “Yay! That’s my truth right there!” In short, follow the good vibes, not the bad ones.

Step two: The sky map

Now that you’re in touch with the power of your intuition, you can launch yourself into the sky, and we mean that literally! It’s time to make your sky map. Imagine this map as a photo taken of the sky at the exact time and place of your birth. The postitions of the stars, planets, Moon, and Sun at that exact moment illuminate who we are. What’s your soul looking for in this life? What life lessons do you want to immerse yourself in? Your sky map is super-vast and full of information. It’s easy to be overwhlemed by the huge abundance of all that’s available. That’s why you have to start slowly.

Here’s what a sky map looks like:

Example of a sky map

You can generate your own sky map for free

  • Go to ASTRO.COM
  • Click “Sky map and ascendants”
  • All you need is the location, date, and time of your birth.

The elements to look for:

  • The elements to look for can be found in the “FATE” table. This table shows the elements your planets can be found in on your sky map.
  • Elements you can disregard (for the moment at least!): the ascendant (letters AC), the lunar nodes (octopus symbol), the middle of the sky (letters MC), and Chiron (key symbol).

Once you exclude those, there are 10 planets left, and they’ll give you a good idea of the elements’ distribution. Let the fun begin!

How do you interpret each element?

The elements are the gateways to astrology. You can think of them as archetypes that are more or less activated differently for everyone:

  • Only 1 planet in an element = a weak element.. Which means it can be easily discarded.
  • 4 planets in one element =a strong element.. Which means it could easily take up too much space.
  • Configuration “2 2 3 3” = a naturally balanced map in terms of elements. But that doesn’t mean you’re a perfectly balanced person! We remain humans, prone to all our cycles and movements.
  • 0 planets in an element =a missing element.
  • 5 planets or more in one element =a key element.

If you find yourself in either of the last two situations, you might say the Universe wants to be sure you’re making progress in your work related to the elements in question. It’s kind of like the Universe is thinking: “All right, in this lifetime, this human really has to learn to work with this element, so I’m going stack it with 5 planets or maybe leave it with none at all!”

1. Fire: The element of creativity

The fire signs are Aries, Leo, and Sagittarius. Fire is the lair of our creativity. It’s the sacred flame within us all, our drive,our appetite for life, our passion, our joy.

Signs that our fire is balanced:

  • We’re hyper-energetic.
  • We need to move.
  • We’re full of passion.
  • We’re steeped in projects.

Pssst! During a night of total freedom, fire’s the friend we find dancing on the bar in some crazy costume, throwing back fireball shooters!

Signs that our fire is exalted:

  • We get angry easily and over nothing.
  • Everyone gets on our nerves, and we feel aggressive.

*Warning: Too much fire can be destructive!

Signs that our fire is extinguished:

  • Life seems a little bland, dull, and sad.
  • We fall into a state of lethargy, a state of fatigue we can’t explain.
  • We start feeling like victims, like our lives are defined by suffering.

Tips for balancing your fire:

  • Get some exercise! Move your body to release the fire within!
  • Being creative is a great way to tame your flames (play music, write poetry, dance, make pottery, draw a mandala). You don’t have to be a famous artist to exercise your creativity! It’s just a question of making the conscious decision to nurture that energy.
  • Fire doesn’t like the expected or routine. When everyday life becomes too repetitive and comfortable, you have to be careful. Instead of setting your life on fire, it’s maybe a good idea to go on a little solo adventure, a hike maybe, or a roadtrip or whatever else keeps you balanced!
  • Dare to do what takes you out of your comfort zone, what gets your adventure juices flowing!

2. Air: The element of speech

The signs ruled by air are Gemini, Libra, and Aquarius. Air represents our intellects, our brains, and our minds.. It’s the element of communication, speech, knowledge, and sharing.

Signs that our air is balanced:

  • We manage to find words that speak directly to the heart, like a poet.
  • We use language in positive ways that have positive impacts on others.
  • We dare to speak the truth.

Signs that our air is exalted:

  • We use words in negative ways.
  • We get lost in the superficiality of words, saying nothing of substance and not listening to others.
  • We tend to talk behind people’s backs, judging them and ourselves.

*Warning: Air is an element with great intelligence. A person who looks exalted risks hurting those around them by putting their finger exactly where it hurts.

Signs that our air is off:

  • We’re very shy.
  • We find it difficult to speak, to embody who we are, and to impose our limits.

Tips for balancing your air:

  • Air loves to learn! Discover something new, take a new course, or read a new book. You can talk about what you’re exploring to your loved ones.
  • Dive into some writing. You can set a goal to journal every day of the month. Practice free writing and see what wants to emerge. Try to bring positivity to your written words; if you do, it’ll be reflected in your spoken words.
  • When your little voice refuses to let you speak, try to take the lead and express yourself. And celebrate yourself every time you do! Every little action is a great one.

3. The Earth: The concrete element

The Earth signs are Taurus, Virgo, and Capricorn. The Earth is the organization, the concrete, the field of 3D, the rooting, the realization, the construction, the effort, the perseverance, and the determination.

Signs that our Earth is balanced:

  • We’re able to set goals and make daily progress.
  • We realize our dreams by having a positive impact.

Signs that our Earth is exalted:

  • We’re control freaks. We want everything done our way. We sound a bit like this: “I’ll do this myself because I want it done well.” (This sounds like a lot of people!)
  • We’re fixated on money, possessions, materialism, and social status (poor exalted Capricorn, who’s often associated with this image of a businessperson who completely destroys the planet!).

Signs that our Earth is extinct:

  • We’re always late to everything.
  • We’re completely disorganized and scattered.
  • We don’t finish our projects.
  • We forget everything.

Tips for balancing your Earth:

  • The most beautiful way to balance your Earth is to bend down and put your hands on it. That’ll help you rediscover how to communicate with nature. You can take a dip in a forested lake, do some gardening, or grow plants at home.
  • Another (kinda boring) trick: get organized! It can be as simple as buying an agenda. See it as a sacred practice and a way to take care of yourself.
  • Take the time to cook! Use foods that come straight from the Earth to replensih your body, which is also an extension of the Earth.

4. Water: The element of emotions

The water signs are Cancer, Scorpio, and Pisces. Water is the universe of emotions. It’s our inner world, our intuition, everything that’s mystical, invisible, and unexplained. It’s a bit like our secret world.

Signs that our water is balanced:

  • When an emotion emerges, we welcome it, accept it, and let it exist. Then we let it go. We don’t get attached to it.
  • We’re very intuitive.
  • We’re hypersensitive.
  • We’re really in touch with our emotions.
  • We trust in something bigger than ourselves.

Signs that our water is exalted:

  • We fall into the soup of the mystic.
  • We become paralyzed when making decisions, and we need to draw 8 tarot cards and await 3 swings of the pendulum! This is a sign that it might be time to step back and further anchor our spirituality.
  • We’re overly emotional and refuse to let feelings go.
  • Exalted water extinguishes our fire, and we might find ourselves playing the role of passive victims.

Signs that our water is off:

  • We have little to no compassion or tact.
  • We struggle with empathy and can’t put ourselves in other people’s shoes.
  • We get a little self-centred.

Tips for balancing your water:

  • Finding balance again requires us to find channels for our overflowing water. These channels can be spiritual practices that keep you grounded. Whether through therapy, writing, or mediation, you want to find a way to make your emotions a little less raw.
  • Find what makes you cry, and give free rein to your tears. Try watching a sad movie. A good old dramatic romance movie is perfect for getting in touch with your emotions!
  • Try shaking! It’s a two-in-one: not only does your fire really love when you move your body, your water flows forth and helps you release all kinds of emotions.
*** Tip: Water and fire rarely coexist together. What happens when you pour water on a fire? Easy: it goes out! For the two to coexist, we need a container. Over your fire, make sure you set up a pot for your water. How can you find a good pot? Let’s think of therapy as one. To make sure it’s working, take 30 seconds after a therapy session to analyze your energy levels. If you’ve got a good pot, you’ll be saying to yourself, “Ah, I feel amazing!” But if you’ve got a bad pot, you’ll come out feeling drained and extinguished, which means your pot’s got some holes in it (maybe a bad therapist?), and your fire’s about to go out again. It’s up to you to find the pot that suits you best! ♡

Replay

If you want to check out the whole Red Table event online (and for free!), it’s here!

To conclude, study yourself with love!

We must always remember to look inside ourselves with a loving gaze. We’re not here to judge ourselves. We’re here to understand what makes us tick. Astrology gives us the tools to dive into our soul and learn how to help and take care of ourselves. We don’t have to judge anything, onlyaccept it and send love everywhere!

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