Seeing Signs in the Elements

Beginner’s Corner with Sheridan

Looking for the signs or archetypes around me deepens my understanding of them. As a spiritual aromatherapist, I look to the plants to teach me about life. As a Shamanic Astrologer I look to the sky and the earth to teach me how to better commune with the signs in my chart. Today, let’s look at the elements to further our education of the signs.

I recently heard a fellow astrologer Gemini Brett, who started his astrological journey at the Shamanic Astrology Mystery School, ask what part of the tree is Capricorn? What part of fire is Sagittarius? His questions got me pondering, what part of all the elements represent the twelve signs? Let’s explore together…

Which part of Fire is Aries, Leo or Sagittarius? 

I wonder if Aries is the spark that starts the fire. It could also be the intense flames of a roaring inferno. Perhaps the creativity of Leo makes it the spark instead. Or is Leo the heat we feel, the radiance of the fire itself? Where would Sagittarius live within the fire? Perhaps it is the flickers of flame and smoke rising to the cosmos. Is Sagittarius the aspect of fire that mesmerizes us? Is it the heart of the fire that elicits the meditative yearnings to understand life’s biggest questions?

What part of Earth is Taurus, Virgo or Capricorn? 

Taurus feels like spring blossoms that bring out our sensual sides. A field of wildflowers that invites us to lay in down the meadow, on the pale green sprigs of new grass and simply be. What about Virgo? Is Virgo the patterns in the stones or the striations of the various layers that built the cliff before us? Is Virgo the geometry contained within the leaves or petals of the Taurean blooms. Capricorn seems to be the mountain itself. Capricorn energy resonates with the ancient Pines who have been here for millions of years. Can we find all the earth signs in a single tree? Would Capricorn be the trunk that grows and feeds the tree from the roots? Perhaps Taurus is the roots, nestled into the warm soil. I can see Virgo, not only in the patterns of the leaves, but also in the fungal mycliea that interweave the entire ecosystem together.

What part of Air is Gemini, Libra or Aquarius? 

I perceive Gemini in the tempestuous winds that bring a storm of change, keeping us from getting too comfortable. Aquarius is seen in the thermals that the eagle, hawk and raven soar upon. Maybe Aquarius is the atmosphere itself. Or the air that blows the clouds. Where is Libra in air? Can we detect Libra in the wind we can see blow the grass across the fields or the leaves in the trees? That reflection of the wind seen only by the movement of the plants it touches and affects. Maybe Libra is the wind on our skin, where we feel the air in our hearts, providing that reflection of the world around us.

What part of Water is Cancer, Scorpio or Pisces? 

Pisces feels like the ocean itself, doesn’t it? The primordial soup out of which we all came. The depths, stillness, the encompassing all that covers most of our planet. The saltwater that heals our bodies, minds and hearts. Cancer might be the rain or the little streams that bring nourishment to the earth. Cancer could be felt as the flowing river that nurtures our souls and brings us peace or is that the Pisces part of water? Scorpio feels like the turbulent rapids on the river, thrashing us up and down, but giving us the ride of a lifetime. The crashing waves we surf for the thrill until we get caught inside the break and are fighting for air to breathe.

Perhaps Cancer and Aquarius meet in the clouds that build and produce rain. Maybe Scorpio and Gemini comingle in a hurricane. Do Leo and Capricorn unite in the wildfire that generates new life and renews the forest community once again? Some trees need fire to release their seeds. Is that where Aries and Virgo meet, in the seed of life released in the fire of creation? Do Pisces and Sagittarius meet in the lava reaching the ocean, releasing steam into the heavens as new earth is created, bringing Capricorn into the fold? Do Libra and Taurus enjoy each other’s company in the light breeze tickling our skin as we lay in the grass with our lovers?

It stretches our imaginations and understanding to ponder where the signs live within the elements. It teaches us to feel into our astrology and this deepens our knowledge and experience. Tuning into the natural world is how our ancestors learned. We can do the same when we allow ourselves the space to connect and wonder.

Blessings on your ponderings,

Sheridan Semple


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