In astrology, there are three key pillars of a birth chart. These are your sun, moon, and rising (or ascendant) signs. In Part I of this two-part series, "The Sun, Moon & You", we will look at these three major players from the perspective of Western astrology, and unpack what they mean for you, starting with the sun.

You’re probably familiar with your sun sign. That’s the one you give when someone asks you, “What’s your sign?” But what about your moon sign? Or your rising sign? Did you even know that you had other “signs” besides the sun?

In fact, all the signs and planets are represented in your birth chart, which is essentially your cosmic blueprint; it’s timestamped at the moment of your birth. Each of these signs represents different facets of who you are and the major themes of your life.

Tip: To obtain your own personal cosmic blueprint, go to for a free copy of your birth chart (it will also include your moon and rising signs which we will cover in future posts).

If you already know your sign or once you find out, before we dive too deep, here is a very brief introduction to some key basics of astrological signs. Astrology categorizes the signs of the Zodiac by element and mode. Each of the signs rule a house in the Zodiac and the planets reside within those houses.

The elements (or triplicities as they are technically known) are Fire, Air, Earth, and Water. The modes (quadruplicities) are Cardinal, Fixed, and Mutable. The combination of the element and mode of your sun, moon, and rising signs helps to shape how these energies manifest for you.

Fire and Air signs are considered “masculine” or active signs. Earth and Water signs are “feminine” or receptive.

The elements can be further categorized with the following characteristics:

  • Fire signs (Aries, Leo, Sagittarius) are associated with passion, action, and boldness.
  • Air signs (Gemini, Libra, Aquarius) are considered “mental,” and correspond to thinking, learning, and communication.
  • Earth signs (Taurus, Virgo, Capricorn) are practical and concerned with matters of the physical world.
  • Water signs (Cancer, Scorpio, Pisces) are intuitive, sensitive, and creative.

Of the three modes:

  • Cardinal signs are trailblazers and leaders. They are the signs that kick off each season: Aries, Cancer, Libra, and Capricorn.
  • The fixed signs are a steady, “get things done” energy. These are Taurus, Leo, Scorpio, and Aquarius.
  • The mutable signs are flexible and changeable. They are often problem-solvers. The mutable signs are Gemini, Virgo, Sagittarius, and Pisces.

(Keep in mind these are broad descriptions of categories; each sign has certain nuances.)

This post is for subscribers only

Subscribe now to read the post and get full access to exclusive content.

Subscribe now Already have an account? Sign in