ASTRO-TAROT: Full Moon at 20 Degrees Aries. Sunday, October 13, 2019, 2:07 P.M. PST. Feat. T-Square to Pluto in Capricorn

The energy of this full moon is ushering us into the final quarter of this decade. To put it very bluntly, shit is about to get very real here at the close of business. We are blending elements from two of the most seminal and initiatory signs of the zodiac (Aries and Libra) with the planet that rules irreparable transformation (Pluto) in the sign of foundational realities (Capricorn.)

Let’s break it all down and see where we are headed.

First, we have the full moon which brings us the opposition of the moon in Aries and the sun in Libra. Aries and Libra are cardinal signs. This means that they inherently hold the power of the new within them. When we feel excited, exhilarated and full of promise and energy we are entering the realm of the cardinal signs. (We actually have five planets at this time in cardinal signs so there is a lot of support for feeling excited about new things.)

However, we have to be reminded that this is a full moon and the inherent energy of a full moon is one of completion. This is usually a time where projects are wrapped up either in a particular stage of a project or the project in its entirety. So we might feel a bit constrained as we are being asked to finish something at the same time we are floating in all the cardinal energy.

Full moons also reveal and shed light on things that may have been unknown to us or that we have had some confusion around for a while. We will look very closely at this aspect when we look at the T-square to Pluto and what may arise not only within our own chart but globally.

SIGN: ARIES – Aries rules the first house and is the pure potential which springs forth from us just after our moment of birth. It is that first lusty crying out as our unadulterated senses expose the reality of where we have landed – earth school is loud, bright, cold, rough. We are assaulted and we make it known that we are NOT a happy camper and we want something to change and change NOW! Aries wants to go and do and be and explore. However, on it’s own it doesn’t have the patience to harness the discipline needed to see their adventures through to the end.

Ruled by the planet Mars there is also the potential for warrior and war-like energy to exude. Anger can be the fuel creating discord and discontent. Aries fights to secure it’s sense of self identity and to express the ego, not always diplomatically.

The moon is here and is not always comfortable in this extroverted, initiatory, and exploratory sign. It just wants to hang at home rather than hang on a glider hundreds of feet above the earth!

SIGN: LIBRA – Libra is the first sign we encounter when we make the transition from childhood into adulthood. Libra shifts our focus of reflection about ourselves from our families and closest friends to the larger world. In a sense, when we enter the realm of Libra we are learning to individuate from the family sphere and can invent ourselves according to the reflections we receive from people we now encounter “out there.” Teachers, classmates, close friends, co-workers. These are the people with whom we can try on new masks and try out new ideas with in order to find out where we fit in and what we feel works for us as a persona.

Libra is ruled by Venus and is very invested in harmonious conditions. This can lead to going along to get along and Librans can get lost in the moment and become submissive to the others very quickly. However, they are also quite persuasive and can turn the moment to their favor. The Sun being in Libra shines light on the wish for harmony at this time.

T-SQUARE: So what is this T-square formation? It is when two planets who are opposing each other (in this case the sun and moon) are also forming a 90 degree angle individually to another planet (in this case Pluto.) When you look at it in a chart it will look like a triangle with the base being the two planets opposing and the other two lines being drawn to the additional planet with forms an apex.

How do T-squares function? The planet at the apex of the triangle is sending the energy downward, exerting a pressure upon the other two planets. So, we need to look, now, at what energies Pluto in Capricorn is exerting on the sun and moon.

PLUTO: Pluto is the Lord of the Underworld in our western mythology. He is Hades and rules all things that lurk beneath us in our inner world. The energy is profound and can be disconcerting and uncomfortable. We do not want to deal with those dark places within us. However, let’s look a little deeper.

To understand Pluto (Hades) it is worthwhile to cast a quick glance at the myth of Hades and Persephone.

Persephone is a beautiful, young and innocent woman, daughter of Zeus and Demeter. She plays in nature with her friends and one day Hades sees her and becomes obsessed by her. He hatches a plan to steal her and take her to his realm in the Underworld. When he does so she is, at first, horrified. She was a maiden and he then marries her and transforms her into a woman. He takes it one step further and makes her Queen of the Underworld. Eventually, Persephone embodies this new role fully and is very happy to be this beautiful, powerful Queen. Persephone is taken out from under the protective and restrictive wing of her mother and, instead, is recognized and transformed by Hades for the autonomous, powerful and queenly woman she truly is.

So, when we experience a severe Pluto transit, especially when it is hitting into the very personal planets of Venus and Mars, we can consider how Pluto is creating a new place for us to step into the regal, responsible, stripped-of-youthful-ignorance being we are in essence and ascend the throne of our underworld. This is his greatest power and his greatest gift offered to us. It is on us to understand the depth of this transformation because what is transformed is done so forever. But if we can understand the end game, what we are being asked to become, we can embrace the darkness.

CAPRICORN: With Capricorn we are dealing with structures, solidity, control, boundaries, how laws are enforced through power. When very personal planets like the Sun and Moon are being pulled into the sphere of Capricorn it is always highlighting our personal power.

So, let’s pull this all together.

We have the Sun and Moon in Aries and Libra which speaks to initiatory energies within our self and with others. This can feel really wonderful at first because both of these energies revel in newness given that these are cardinal signs. However, since we are balancing the wants and needs of the self with the wants and needs of others we are on a see-saw and can become frustrated. This can lead to impulsiveness and possibly using anger and tantrums as a means of dealing with our frustrations on the one hand, or submissiveness leading to a simmering anger turned within when we don’t get what we want.

With the T-Square from Pluto he is exerting pressure on both the sun and moon to give up the childish ideals and take a step toward claiming our rightful place in our world. Step up and take on the regal aspects of these two energies.

For Aries, it is the initiatory energy of fire and provides true passion and zeal to inspire others toward taking action. A King or Queen provides the inspiration not through wielding their egos and forcing people to see things their way but through making each person they meet feel like they are part of the plan, integral to the cause, and vital to the movement.

With Libra a King or Queen’s power is connecting one on one with those around us and offering them ways to feel loved and beautiful without imposing our own sense of what that might look like for them. It is giving permission to others to find the beautiful for themselves and that is a very powerful gift that we can extend to anyone.

In embracing these ways of inspiring and encouraging others we embody our true regal natures that are secure and full of true power.


For this Full Moon find the King or Queen card that you feel most aligned with and use this card in daily meditation for the next two weeks. Ask questions of it as your days go by and situations arise. Are the kids driving you crazy? Ask your King, “What is the most regal way to deal with my children?” Same for anything that brings you to a dark place of the emotions of anger, hatred, depression, fear. Ask that Queen to help you find your way toward a higher path for the good of yourself and others.

On a more playful note, buy or make a crown and, when you are feeling particularly out of control, stick that puppy on your head and look at yourself in the mirror. See if this image of yourself in a royal form helps to change the attitude from child to Ruler of your Realm.

As ever, may you have a wonderful two weeks working with this energy.



This is a rare and extremely powerful full moon. The fact that the Moon is conjoining the planet Neptune is it’s own sign of Pisces, and that we have a conjunction of the Sun with Mars opposite just doesn’t come along very often and it is worthwhile to sit up and take notice. Because of the complexity of energies this post is a bit involved but I have done my best to untangle. Please feel free to send along any questions you may have. So let’s begin!!


Generally, in any full moon, we are actually, physically able to see the Moon because the Sun is directly across from it, shining it’s light on the Moon. Though the Moon carries no light of its own we still consider it a luminary. It is not a shining light (outward energy), but a reflective light (inward energy.) So this is why we associate full moons with culminations…we have watched ideas and projects grow to a point of it unfolding in fullness in some way, either because it is complete or because a phase of it has completed and we are now able to revise and restructure to start a new phase at the new moon upcoming.

However, this particular full moon is functioning very differently for two reasons. Both the Sun and the Moon are being hugged by two other planets. The Sun is conjunct Mars in Virgo and the Moon is conjunct Neptune in Pisces. How is this affecting us?

Let’s look at the Moon first. In this case the elliptic of the full Moon is actually making it go behind Neptune. Whilst the moon often connects with Neptune to have it do so at the same degree that it is full is a very rare occurrence. While we don’t experience a difference in the way the moon looks it is still what is happening in the sky. So, effectively, the forces of Neptune are blocking that illuminating quality that a full moon usually has on a material level. Neptune and Pisces will always invite us to go on a very deep dive to the depths of our psychic realm. Since the Moon is also a planet working on our emotional body we could find ourselves feeling profoundly emotional which may manifest as a great deal of confusion, feeling underwater, and feeling overwhelmed. Nothing may seem clearly illuminated at all. You may even find yourself in what the Christian mystics referred to this experience as the Dark Night of the Soul. While not a comfortable place to be it is a rich and fertile time for letting go of what we thought we knew about our lives and about ourselves and surrendering to whatever it is that you consider to be the Divine. More about this in a moment.

Now let’s turn toward the Sun and Mars. Mars is the planet of action! It rules our physical bodies which is our vehicle for getting things we need to do done. The new moon two weeks ago found us with a stellium of planets, including Mars, in Virgo and it was all about organizing and dealing with a multitude of details. We got a huge burst of energy to take care of our projects and you may have felt invigorated to work on things you had set aside a while back. Did you purge and clean your office or computer? Did you finally get to that home improvement project that has been on the back burner? Mars is a motivator.

But most of the stellium has moved on. Mars, however, is still hanging out in a conjunction with the Sun. It is so close to the Sun that it is in a configuration known as “combust.” This energy manifests exactly as it sounds…when a planet is combust the Sun it is burned in the cauldron of fire. Therefore, the energy of the planet combust is dissipated until it moves out of the orbit of the Sun. So now, two weeks after all that go, go, go, you may be wondering, “Hey! Why am I suddenly feeling so wiped out? Where did all that motivation and energy suddenly go?” You might now be looking at a pile of things you started to take care of with great gusto two weeks ago but now you can barely figure out how to continue on, or even what your goal was in the first place!

Because of these two mitigating factors we find ourselves disoriented. It is as if we were in car cruising along and suddenly the car hit the brakes…really, like, WE did not hit those braked, but the car itself did! Not only have we suddenly come to a screeching halt we can’t figure out why or how!

There is really nothing we can do about the momentum at this time. We simply need to ride this one out the best way we know how. Surrender the need to do and bow to the need to simply be right now. We might be feeling incredibly tired all of a sudden and feel the need for a lot of extra rest. That is exactly the antidote for all of this powerful energy. Rest, restore, renew. Turn your energies toward your spiritual practice in whatever quiet way works for you. Meditation is really supported right now.


The element of water on this full moon is very strong. In the tarot this is the quintessential energy we get with the High Priestess card. When the Moon goes behind Jupiter it is going behind the veil of the Priestess. That is why, in the Rider Waite Smith deck, if you look closely you will see that behind her is a body of water (as is the bottom of her robe.)

So let’s talk water. We have three water signs – Cancer, Scorpio and Pisces. Cancer is the first water sign of the zodiac, Scorpio the second, and finally Pisces.

As we move around the zodiac from the first house to the 12th all the planets and signs mature. The first sign of any element can be considered the youngest energy of that element, the second is more a young adult just arriving out of their teen years and the final sign is a matured aspect with adult outlooks.

Let’s look at those three signs in this context. Cancer is childlike water. It is full of primary emotions, that we experience as children. We express it when we feel it and we don’t care, really, who is watching. We feel what we feel.. Happy? We laugh. Angry? We yell or pout. Loving? We go right in for that big kiss! While Cancer water is not particularly sophisticated it is very authentic because it is right out there for all to see.

Moving to Scorpio water we are now in the eighth house of others. Here we find that we internalize our feelings first and then kind of check it out with other people in our sphere to see if we dare express it, or if we share it, or if we just keep it hidden. In many ways, we do not trust those feelings unless someone is mirroring for us whether or not we should consider them valid. This is a very rocky and, in our teen years, it is a form of madness!

But when we finally dive into the waters of Pisces we are in a mature ocean and here we crave solitude and deep diving. Pisces water is the water of the depths and we are not tossed around by it. But we can become very confused if we go deeper than we are ready for, being unprepared on how to navigate the darkness. So here we find the waters of dreams, visions, longings of the soul, the dark night of the soul. We can reach these depths in moments of deepest devotion or by utilizing a substance to help us drown. In Pisces water we can find the sublime or the deepest pyschosis.

So here we have the moon being veiled by this incredibly deep need for quiet. A rest for the soul. A darkened room lit by a single candle. We may find our dream world incredibly active on either side of this full moon. Pay full attention to what images emerge right now and see how they speak to you. You may get a very clear message about something that you have been visioning for yourself for the past six months or so.


We covered the earth element in our last new moon blog so I won’t expand on it here. However, because of the strong, strong water energy right now it is safe to say that we may internally be feeling underwater or flooded emotionally. We might be storing more water in our bodies (Mars) and feel bloated and heavy. Our minds may feel foggy and we might be a bit more forgetful as the element of fire and water combine and create steam and mist. While it may seem counter-intuitive to suggest this, it is going to be important to physically drink more water

INGREDIENTS: Dreams, intuition, plans on hold, confusion, exhaustion, meditation, feeling foggy, spiritual deep dives.


This is a truly beautiful time to explore our deep psychic abilities and receive messages from the depths more easily than when we are engaged in the daily living of our lives. Here is a very powerful yet simple exercise to guide you.

Candle Gazing with the High Priestess:

I invite you to do the practice of Trataka tonight, as close to the exact full moon time as possible. (This will be 9:32PM Pacific on September 13, 12:32AM September 14 Eastern.) This practice of candle gazing will bring together the darkness that the moon is experiencing as it dives into the depths of Pisces and the light of the Sun and Mars combust. It will help to illuminate the intuitive perception about what needs to be known during this exceptional moment.

For instructions about Trataka and how to set up a space for it I like the simple explanation provided in this article:

The extra piece is to get out a High Priestess card from whichever deck you wish according to the image that speaks most deeply to you at this time. Place the card directly behind the candle so that her image will be there as you gaze into the flame. You will not see her image clearly, but slightly out of focus, as if you are gazing into a shallow bowl of water and she is there at the bottom. See what messages she may have for you, or what feelings come up when you are in her presence.

As ever, dear friends, may you harness all the magic that surrounds you and live fully and deeply.



Greetings everyone! Here we go with a very powerful new moon with some of the most grounded energy of the year thus far. There are a couple of wonderfully supportive astrological configurations that will be in full swing, so let’s get started!

As we are now learning, the new moon energy is a seed time with new beginnings at hand. With all the super earthy energy coming in we are looking at a very fertile ground to plant the seeds we have been mulling over.


Right now all of these planets are basically sitting in each other’s lap in the sky!! While there are five of them on the new moon, four of them will continue to be together until the middle of September. When three or more planets are in a sign or house this is known as a stellium of planets.

All of these planets are very, very tight together and so they are actually functioning almost like a single, very complex planet. All five of these planets are our very, very personal planets so this new moon will affect you on the most personal areas of your life: your emotions, your thoughts and words, your sense of personal beauty (both inside and out) and your close friendships, your children, and your activity and health arenas.

All the planets except Venus are snugged within the first decan of Virgo (please see my post on decans for more information about this!) making this new moon filled with superfied Virgo energy, if you will. Let’s take a look at what that might entail.


Virgo can often get a bad rap, as it were. It rules the areas in our life that pertain to the details of how we move through our days. So we are looking at our daily habits and routines. We are looking at the way our environment is set up to help us get things done.

This means, truly, everything we do on a constant basis from how we get up in the morning and start our day, how we manage and organize our time and tasks at work, when and what we choose to eat habitually, and what we do on a regular, extracurricular basis. So, with ALL theses planets in Virgo it will highlight the habits associated with all those areas we just spoke of above: your emotions, your thoughts and words, your sense of personal beauty (both inside and out) and your close friendships, your children, and your activity and health arenas.

Importantly, Virgo is ruled by the planet Mercury, and Mercury is all about how we communicate. It covers all points of communication from the thoughts we have to how we verbally express ourselves. As you can see, Mercury is part of the Virgo stellium with this new moon so it is really highlighted as it is in it’s home territory and we will go through this in a moment. So here we are given a huge boost for very concentrated analysis and logic. Laser focused thought! I will show how this will be beneficial as this energy plays into the Grand Trine in earth in a moment.

What to watch for is the tipping point where our analysis becomes criticism of our self and others, and where our attention to detail becomes perfectionism. It will be a delicate balance because we are so, so, SO Virgo.

I do feel that there is one thing about Virgo that often gets over looked. Beyond all these more mundane qualities Virgo is about tending. It is traditionally equated with the Vestal virgins of ancient Rome. They were particularly involved in the maintenance (the tending) of the fire sacred to Vesta, the goddess of the hearth and home. This fire was never to go out so they had to be extremely diligent in their duties. They were also responsible for collecting water from a sacred spring, preparing food used in rituals and caring for sacred objects in the temple’s sanctuary.

Virgo is the sign that signals the upcoming harvest of our life every year at this time. It is not about the actual harvesting itself, but it is about observing how things have actually manifested according to the way in which we have tended the soil of our lives and been diligent with our duties over the past year. So how have you done tending your world? This is where we can begin to look at the way our habits of living are cultivating what is manifesting in our lives. I have provided an exercise utilizing your tarot cards to help you work with this in a very practical way.


Regarding elemental influence we have an additional three planets in Earth: Saturn, Uranus and Pluto making a total of eight out of ten planets in earth signs! So this is a VERY significant new moon bringing in a lot of stability and structure.

Speaking of structure, this literally means taking a look a the form and organization of the vessels in your life….your body, your home (more your house) and your actual work space. These are the practical supports for your inner work and they are being highlighted. The glyph of Virgo is the scales so we are going to be asked to make sure we are aware of balance in our world of physical manifestation.


I have explained what a stellium is but what is a trine? A trine means that there are at least three planets that are all approximately 120 degrees away from each other. In this case we have ALL those planets in the Virgo stellium trining both Saturn in Capricorn and Uranus in Taurus! Since this includes all the earth signs we call it a Grand Trine.

Let’s see what makes this so special:

This trine lends a powerful boost toward sitting down and putting pen to paper (or fingers to keyboard) and brainstorming any plans you might have been considering regarding a possible new business. This isn’t about creating a business plan. This is the planting of the seeds of new ideas for work projects and getting them out into the tangible world in order to flesh out the details and put some order into your thoughts which will help to get you closer to it’s manifestation. The details will flow easily. It could also mean a real deep dive into looking at the work that you are currently doing and the possibility that it may need some new changes in how you structure your days, especially regarding time management.

But our career isn’t the only type of work that can be developed. You can look at plans for building a new house, or modifying the one you have. You can come up with a mission statement for a new way of living healthy through changes in nutrition and exercise. Ground it!

RECIPE INGREDIENTS: Habits, details, plans, analysis, organization, planting new seeds that you have had rattling around in your thoughts.

TAROT FUN!!: This new moon and all it’s configurations is highlighted strongly with the suit of Pentacles. I encourage you to do and exercise with the minor arcana which will help you begin to see the cards differently in the following way:

Lay out the minors from right to left as you do the following exercise:

Pick something very personal that you have been working on building up for the past few months (or, preferably, the past year) which is related to some form of practical, earthy matters. This could be your career, your finances, your health, work on your home. Now, using the cards, pretend you are telling the story about this journey. You will be telling the story of how your constructed this project so you will start with the Ace and work your way to the ten.

To clarify, when you are in the mode of construction you can begin by looking at the way the idea first came to you, the spark of inspiration to do something differently. (Here your cards would start with the Ace on the left and work their way to the ten.)

For instance, let’s take the topic of cleaning your home office. How did it begin? How did it progress according to the energy of the cards?

Here is how you might start the story:

One day I was sitting in my office trying to work and I realized that I couldn’t move for all the stuff I had all over the floor! I was tired of all this and decided I needed to come up with a plan to re-do this office so that I could work better.

When I started to look around I realized the problem was bigger than I first thought! It was a sea of jumbled things and I couldn’t figure out how to organize. I kept looking at moving my desk to that corner, or maybe trying to add a bookshelf, but maybe I needed to get some boxes first, or should I just sit down and start sorting things one by one?

I quickly realized I needed some help in figuring out the best way to approach this project. So, I called my friends, Justin and Pete, and asked them if they would come over and consult with me to get a firm plan in hand...

See? You would then work your way through the story using the other seven cards.

Now, take the cards and look at a personal topic; again regarding your work, business, finances, health, home improvement; that you have been trying to de-construct. It might be the same issue as above. With de-construction, we are looking at how you worked through the process of undoing something.

With this process if, for instance, you have been working on health, you want to look at how you moved away from the habits you had been involved in through the energy of the cards as they progress from the ten to the Ace.

Here is how you might start the story when de-constructing:

Late last summer I was enjoying a great party over at my grandmother’s house. All the family was there and we were just enjoying the day and all the great food that everyone had brought! Everything was so delicious and I had extra portions of my grandma’s pudding cake!

I took a walk off by myself and was pretty out of breath after a very short few steps. I stood by the wall and looked around. I was realized that I was pretty happy with my life. Things were going well. But I thought about how out of shape I was and how unhappy I had been with that area of my life. I built a wall around me and pretended it didn’t matter but deep down it was definitely and area of discontent. At that moment, I decided that it was time to break out of my complacency and get to work changing this area of my life.

I realized there was a lot of work to do and I couldn’t just work on one area without having to change the other areas as well. I sat down and started to look at the things that needed to change: what I ate, how I exercised, who would help to support me along the way? I took a very hard look at all the areas. It took a while to sort through but it was worth it because I really needed a plan…

And so forth! Now, work your way through the remaining cards until you get to the Ace! If you haven’t gotten to a place where you actually feel like you are complete in this change, just write the story with the ending you would like to see!

With this practice you will begin to see how the cards flow in both directions which will be very helpful with interpretations in the long run.

PRACTICALLY SPIRITUAL: With all this earth and the focus on the details of our living we might be very tempted to become overly focused and, even more insidiously, a perfectionist in the extreme. We could feel like we are constantly walking around with our nose to the grindstone and our vision looking down. While this is helpful so that we don’t miss anything, there is a lot of potential for us to loose sight of the bigger picture of the people and places around us. We do not live in isolation in a cave on a mountain top.

Journal about your soil. What is the state of the ground upon which you are trying to establish your career, your health, your home?

In order to counter-balance this tendency you will need LOOK UP! I mean this in a very literal sense. As in, remember to look up and go to a window and look out. Wherever you are when you are walking look up into the faces of the people you are around. Go outside and look up at the stars and observe the vast universe!

As ever, I hope this information will enrich your understanding of astrology, tarot and YOU! Have fun and enjoy this great energy guiding and aiding you toward your goals and dreams.

Be well, be happy.


Astrology: An Introduction to Decans

There are many things we do in astrology that help us hone in or the essence of the interactions of the planets in our birth chart. I like to use the analogy of a radio. You can often get to the main station’s signal, but sometimes it’s not one hundred percent clear. Maybe there is a little static. If you turn the dial of the radio right or left very slowly and tick into a slightly different frequency you can often clear things up and get much better reception. Using the information provided with decans is one of those slow turns of the knob and can really help us clarify.

This explanation is geared toward a beginner who has spent some time getting to know the basics of chart interpretation. I have offered it to beginners because I don’t think that decans are mysterious but no one told me about them until I was well into a more intermediate stage of astrological learning. Since this is a very brief overview and I will be painting in wildly broad strokes I have not included house or aspect interpretations…these you will need to add into the pot as you go along.

I use decans in a very practical manner with all charts I analyze. Initially, I will apply decan interpretation up front for the sun, moon and ascendant of every chart. This gives me a very rich personality profile without having to dig too deep. Secondly, I will apply it to planets that are very influential in a chart especially with those involved in tension based configurations such as T-squares. This is very clarifying. So I feel that this is a little tip that even beginners can use once they understand the ingredients needed to create the dish!

Is A Decan Like A Pecan?

First, let’s make sure you get that pronunciation right! Decan is pronounced “dek-an” with emphasis on the “dek.” It is shorthand for the word decanate. You’re welcome!

So, what is a decan? Here is what I assume you already know about each sign – Aries, Taurus, Gemini etc; have 30 degrees that make up the whole of the sign. The degrees start with 0 degrees of a sign and end at 29 degrees of that sign. Those thirty degrees can be divided up into three groups of 10 degrees. A 10 degree group is called a decan!

You can already see that there will be three decans per sign. Let’s take Aries as an example. This is how the decans will look:

First decan: 0 – 9 degrees of Aries.

Second decan: 10-19 degrees of Aries

Third decan: 20 – 29 degrees of Aries

So simple! The same degrees are grouped for the decans of every sign!

It’s Elementary, My Dear Friend!

Now, how does it work?

You also already know that every sign has an element: Fire, Water, Earth or Air. We will continue look at Aries for our example and Aries is a fire sign.

Every element is represented in astrology by three signs. In the chart above you can see Aries is a fire sign and so are Leo and Sagittarius.

The three signs have a maturing aspect when you work with them around the birth chart. The first sign in an element is the newest sign. It is the “newborn” of the element. The second sign in the element is a more grown up version and is more like the “young teen/young adult” of the element. The last sign in the element is the “adult” version of the element.

In our Aries example, we have Aries as the newborn fire sign, Leo is the young teen/adult fire sign, and Sagittarius is the adult fire sign.

Growth Through The Element of Fire

What do I mean by newborn, young adult and adult expressions of an element? Let’s look a bit more closely as the fire signs in a simplified manner.

Aries the Newborn – Aries is the very first sign of the entire zodiac, living in the first house of the zodiac and is the first sign of the element of fire! If we use the analogy of a human life it really IS the energy of a newborn! It sees the world as brand new, pure potential, pure inspiration and anything is possible! Babies are completely self-centered, and Aries energy can also be this way as it can be very focused on self-identity and relates everything that is happening around it to, “how does this affect me?” It is fiery and driven to explore and learn with curiosity full steam ahead.

Leo the Young Teen – As a child grows it begins to lose some of that self-only identification. It has moved through the houses of growth which involve inter-relating to a family unit, whether just with parents or combined with siblings. It rules the fifth house where we learn that there are other people in the world outside the home most notably through the act of having to go to school. Leo’s energy is full of play and creativity. It loves to party and you can’t have much of a party by yourself so it’s about learning the art of socialization with peers and making friends. Leo is also the sign that shows up when the ego is starting to feel its oats because, again, when stepping out into the land of others we are often confronted by the mirror that reflects to us perceptions about who we are in comparison to another person, or a within a group of others.

Sagittarius the Adult – Continuing on with our analogy of a child, by the time we reach the sign of Sagittarius we have done a lot of living. This roughly correlates to the ages of our mid-20’s to mid-30’s and we are now moving toward becoming established in our chosen careers through higher education, we might have a long term relationship, children, have bought a house. Sagittarius brings us into an integration with our outer lives and our sense of our inner spiritual foundation. It is far from staid as it is still a fire sign so there is a lot of action and interaction with this sign.

Now, Apply It!

Let’s summarize what we you know:

  • Each sign has 30 degrees. Those 30 degrees are divided into three groups of 10 degrees. A group of 10 degrees is called a decan. This means that each sign has three decans within it.
  • Each sign has an element (fire, water, earth, air.)
  • There are three signs for every element.

So, how does this all work? Back to Aries!

  • There are three decans in Aries,
  • Aries is a fire sign and,
  • There are three fire signs – Aries is the first, Leo is the second, Sagittarius is the third.

We now assign each one of the fire signs to each decan in the one sign we are interested in. The assignments go in order of zodiacal progression, moving counter-clockwise around the astrological chart (see image above.) So, lets look and see how that works for the sign of Aries.

  • First assignment: 0 – 9 degrees of Aries is the “Aries decan of Aries.”
  • Second assignment: 10-19 degrees of Aries is the “Leo decan of Aries.”
  • Third assignment: 20-29 degrees of Aries is the “Sagittarius decan of Aries.”

Whatever sign you are interested in, the first decan will always be it’s own sign. So, let’s now look at the second and third fire signs, Leo and Sagittarius! Here is the breakdown:


  • First assignment: 0-9 degrees of Leo is the “Leo decan of Leo.”
  • Second assignment: 10-19 degrees of Leo is the “Sagittarius decan of Leo.”
  • Third assignment: 20-29 degrees of Leo is the “Aries decan of Leo.”


  • First assignment: 0-9 degrees of Sagittarius is the “Sagittarius decan of Sagittarius.”
  • Second assignment: 10-19 degrees of Sagittarius is the “Aries decan of Sagittarius.”
  • Third assignment: 20-29 degrees of Sagittarius is the “Leo decan of Sagittarius.”

You can now work this out with all the remaining elements and their corresponding signs!

Pulling It All Together

Now lets look at this practically. Let’s look at possible interpretations for a sun at 12 degrees of Sagittarius, a moon at 12 degrees of Leo, and an Ascendant at 5 degrees of Aries. How does this help in fine tuning the interpretation of these three basic elements of a chart? (Again, I am not including anything about houses or aspects here, just a broad stroke of the way fine tuning utilizing a decan can go. The houses and aspects will also modify and fill out the picture much more .)

First, we look at the sun. At 12 degrees of Sagittarius it falls in the second decan of Sagittarius which is the “Aries decan of Sagittarius.” This means that the sun carries all the qualities of Sagittarius sun and is expressed through a more Aries-like quality. So, while Sagittarius may suggest that this is someone who is may be very interested in pursuing things like higher education, justice, and/or spiritual pursuits the way the Aries decan says that one may likely pursue these things could manifest in a very self-interested fashion. While this person might be interested, say, in the justice system, when they do get involved in that system their motivation for doing so may not come from a particularly altruistic push of helping the downtrodden seek justice. It could be a very self-serving motivation in that “being a justice seeker” is the persona they are trying to develop and maintain. Aries (the “baby” fire sign) often likes to initiate projects and programs but they can also have a hard time seeing things to completion because they lack the maturity to apply discipline so they would likely be more interested in looking like they were the one in charge than actually implementing change. Lastly, Aries is ruled by Mars so this might point to a tendency to be adversarial in approach rather than collaborative as Sagittarius is wont to do.

Next, let’s look at the moon at 12 degrees of Leo, with it falling in the Sagittarius decan of Leo. A Leo moon is nurtured and emotionally fed by all things Leonian – play, creative pursuits, socializing with friends, partying til dawn. Security will be found in having close friendships and they may thrive in being the class clown or known as the life of the party. With it falling in the Sagittarius decan you can add that Jupiter influence and this may be someone who comes off larger than life! This person might well be emotionally fed by the adoration of the theater or movies and will be very good at it, possibly a star with many accolades! The Sagittarius decan, being the “adult” decan can also lend a very mature note to this person, even while they are living large. They could appear very Leonian with a flashy presence writ large but they would have the ability to also be very intelligent and articulate and use their opportunities of interviews to discuss equality and justice for the disenfranchised.

Finally, a quick look at the Ascendant at 5 degrees Aries. No mystery here…that is an Aries rising in the Aries decan. Straight up Aries all the way! With that Aries decan it gives the Ascendant a double whammy. Their doorway to the world is framed by that fiery, inspired, initiatory Martian charge! They will just go for it and damn the torpedos!

Check Your Chart!

I hope that this has been helpful to you and that you quickly reached for your own chart to see what your sun, moon and ascendant are looking like with this added information. It might be that you suddenly understand why you have a Gemini sun but you have never really felt that you fit that bill…only to discover that your sun is in the Libra decan! So, while you might be initially OK with lots of social mental energy your sun is tampered a bit by the Libra and Venus influence and you feel that you really relate more from that heart center than your head!

Please feel free to message me if you have any questions and if this has been interesting to you do pursue further research online! There is a LOT of information about decans out there!

Be well, be happy.