Manage episode 312765987 series 3245463
Everyone with an interest in astrology soon learns about how particular planets rule certain signs. To many astrologers, that makes them automatically “good.” To those same astrologers, for a planet to find itself in the opposite sign is unfortunate. The term they use there is ”detriment” – obviously, not such a good thing. This common notion is simply incorrect, in my experience. The error is easily proven too. The infamous Yorkshire Ripper had a really “good” Mercury – in Gemini, conjunct his Gemini Sun. I suspect he excelled at talking his victims into vulnerable positions. Meanwhile, Rev. Martin Luther King had a “bad” Neptune – in Virgo, the sign opposite Pisces, the sign it naturally rules. Did that mean he had no spiritual life or that he lacked a visionary imagination?
Instead of calling it “good” when a planet is in the sign it rules, I find it is much more accurate to call it strong. But is strong the same as good? When a planet is in the sign it rules, they agree with each other. There is no friction. Their energy flows like a geyser, no questions asked. Conversely, when a planet is in the opposite sign – in detriment – it must deal with complexity and paradox – and that is not necessarily such a bad thing. Can we fight for peace? Ask Mars in Libra. Can questioning and doubting ourselves be a path to greatness? Ask Jupiter in Virgo. What about questioning our own beliefs from time to time? Ask Mercury in Sagittarius.
A while back, I made a video about this subject called The Grace in Debility. Click here if you would like to buy a copy of it. The video version is $15 and the audio only one is $10. In this newsletter, I want to tackle a very similar subject, albeit one that is not as widely known: the notion of planetary exaltation and planetary fall. It is not quite the same as rulership and detriment, but there are many parallels – including the widespread, unhelpful notion that exaltation is good news and that a planet occupying the sign of its fall automatically spells bad news.
As we just saw, when a planet is in the sign it rules, there is a very straightforward agreement between the two energies – Jupiter says “I feel lucky” and Sagittarius chimes in – “I bet there are no bears in that cave.” With exaltation, the situation is a bit more subtle. In essence, the sign has the effect of underscoring some specific potential strength in the planet – or similarly, of correcting one of its blind spots. The planet is therefore uplifted – “exalted,” if you will.