January 1, 2022 — 12:34 PM
Maybe we’re biased, but it sure seems like more and more people are getting curious about astrology these days. And the more you learn about the cosmos, the more clear it becomes that astrology goes way beyond your sun sign.
If you’re curious to learn more about astrology in the new year (or brush up on the basics before diving into your 2022 horoscope), we rounded up three key concepts that are sure to go a long way in your overall understanding of the subject. So, without further ado, let’s dive in:
1. Understanding the elements
First up, let’s talk about the elements. The 12 zodiac signs are split up among the four elements (fire, earth, air, and water), with three signs per element.
While there is definitely nuance among the signs in each element, they often share similar qualities that make sense when you consider their common element. Fire signs for example, are, well, fiery. Here’s a closer look:
Fire signs (Aries, Leo, Sagittarius):
Fire energy is dynamic, active, and restless. As a “yang” element, along with air, fire carries more masculine energy. Those born under a fire sign can have impulsive, passionate, and potentially temperamental tendencies.
Earth signs (Taurus, Virgo, Capricorn):
Earth energy is physical, tangible, and sensual. It is a “yin” element, along with water signs, meaning it carries a more feminine energy. Earth signs like having a solid and secure foundation and are known for being steady and grounded.
Air signs (Gemini, Libra, Aquarius):
Air energy is mental, cerebral, and communicative. It’s the other yang element, so it is masculine, though it deals more with the realm of thought as opposed to action, in the case of fire. Air signs value the exchange of ideas and information.
Water signs (Cancer, Scorpio, Pisces):
Water energy is emotional, sensitive, and often a bit mysterious. The other yin element, water, is feminine. Those born under a water sign are often intuitive to the point that they may seem psychic and are very home- and family-oriented.
2. Understanding modalities
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Next up we have “modalities,” aka cardinal, fixed, and mutable signs. Each of the three modalities is determined by where a sign falls within a season, with cardinal signs beginning seasons, fixed signs positioned in the middle, and mutable signs ending the season.
Knowing that each element in astrology contains three zodiac signs, if you take it a step further, you find that each element also contains each modality, and each modality contains all four elements. (Taking water signs, for example, we see that Cancer is cardinal, starting summer. Scorpio is fixed, in the middle of autumn. And of course, Pisces finishes out winter.)
Here’s a bit more info on the modalities:
Cardinal (Aries, Cancer, Libra, Capricorn):
The cardinal signs begin every season, which translates into a “starter” energy that makes these signs great leaders. They’re quick to come up with ideas, spot and start trends, and initiate plans. If you need to get the ball rolling on a project, these are the folks to call.
Fixed (Taurus, Leo, Scorpio, Aquarius):
Fixed signs come in the middle of each season, which translates to somewhat of a “workhouse” mentality—in the best way, of course. Fixed signs are reliable and organized. Consider them the project managers of the zodiac: there to get things from start to finish and keep the momentum going along the way.
Mutable (Gemini, Virgo, Sagittarius, Pisces):
Rounding out each season, we have the mutable signs. These folks are known for being adaptable and good with change and can be thought of as the “editors” or “fine-tuners” of the zodiac. These folks are solution-oriented and have a knack for perfecting and tying up loose ends.
3. Understanding the houses
And last but not least, we have the houses. This is where things can start getting a bit technical and complicated, but we’ll try to break it down simply.
If you’ve ever looked at your birth chart, you can see it’s broken up into 12 “houses” or sections, which are each associated with one of the 12 signs. The first house, for example, is associated with Aries and its ruling planet Mars. Makes sense, given that Aries starts the astrological year. The second house, then, is associated with Taurus (the next sign after Aries) and its ruling planet Venus; The third house is Gemini, and so on.
When thinking about the themes of each house, knowing which sign it’s associated with can help. Leo, for example, is associated with the fifth house, and both deal with themes of expression, attention, and creativity.
Things get interesting here when you look at your specific birth chart, and namely your rising sign, which becomes the location of your “personal” first house. For example, if your rising sign is Aquarius, which is associated with the 10th house, Aquarian qualities may show up in areas of self-identity, which is what the first house is all about.
When you begin to understand your planetary placements relative to your specific chart and where your first house is, you really start to see how your behavior or temperament can be influenced by these subtle chart intricacies.
Curious to dive deeper? Check out our guide to the 12 houses for more information.
Astrology is truly its own language—and one that more and more people are becoming fluent in at that. There’s always more to learn when it comes to the stars, with so many resources available today—like the AstroTwins’ 2022 Horoscope book, which we’re loving. Who knows, maybe 2022 is the year you become an astro-fanatic yourself.