What’s my sign?
Well, that depends on your orientation. It might not be what you think it is.
Part 1. Cosmic order
Everything in the universe is interconnected. There is an order to the universe, an organization of all phenomena and experiences, which stem from the divine source of all being. The more directly we align ourselves with this source, the more harmonious our lives become. Our horoscope shows us how our unique self can connect to this source.
From our limited perspective here on planet Earth however, things are not always what they seem. Because the Earth wobbles on its axis, there is an astronomical phenomenon called the precession of the equinoxes, whereby the western astrological frame of reference of the position of Earth deviates from its actual position relative to the planets and stars. It takes approximately 26,000 years for the Earth to return to its “original” actual alignment…
Think of your horoscope as a complex cosmic clock, where the 12 signs of the zodiac are arranged around the clock, just like hours on a typical clock. The planets of our astrological chart fall onto the clock at different places, depending on the the time of life in question – your life, the lives of other people, the life of events and other phenomena.
Because of the precession of the equinoxes, to see the actual alignment of your being with the forces of the cosmos we must “turn the clock” (that is the western-based astrological chart, also known as the tropical zodiac) counterclockwise by about 23 or 24 degrees (depending on when you were born). This puts you onto sidereal time, the actual aligned positions of Earth relative to the rest of the galaxy.
For westerners, what this means is that unless you were born in the last 6 days or so of your western Sun sign, your sign is one earlier – Pisces becomes Aquarius, Leo becomes Cancer, etc. Same goes for your Moon sign, your Ascendant (Rising sign), and all other planets in your chart. This can significantly affect the reading of one’s chart* and change one’s ideas about how to navigate through this life.
Part 2. More than your sun sign
Most people in the western world know their “sign” as being the zodiac constellation where the Sun was when they were born. But that’s only part of the story. The Sun is indeed significant – it’s the source of our life on planet Earth – but it’s not the only defining part of who we are astrologically.
The constellation where the Moon was at birth is equally influential in “who we are” – but in a different way. The Moon literally pulls on us just as it does on the tides, other life forms, and all of planet Earth. It travels around the zodiac faster than the Sun (a month to go around, compared to a year), and is thus a “finer tuning” of our planetary makeup. The moon reflects other levels of our personality, layered along with the primal driving power of the Sun.
Even finer tuning comes when we know what time of day we were born. The sign where the horizon was rising at the time of our birth is known as our Rising Sign or the Ascendant. The Earth makes a full revolution on its axis every 24 hours, so every 2 hours the horizon passes through one of the 12 zodiac signs – a new Ascendant. The Ascendant is thus the most unique time-wise determinant of our astrological chart, and is a key window into how we view the world, how others view us, and how we show up in the signs of the zodiac. (Not everyone knows the time of day they were born. A good astrological reading is still nonetheless possible.)
The combination of Sun, Moon, and Rising signs gives us the fuller picture of what our “sign” is. Each of these key factors reveal a complementary dimension of our being. And besides these three, there are the rest of the planets, energetic agents that help s fulfill the reason for our coming into this life.
To find out more, get a reading.
*The system Indian astrology (what I use, mainly) relies on the sidereal zodiac. My experience and intuition is that this frame of reference makes the most sense for how I understand the universe and am thus able to provide readings. This is not to say however that other competent astrologers who use other systems cannot provide a helpful reading.