Introduction to the Elements
Introduction to Astrology
What the Elements Mean in Astrology
The elements in astrology are based on the four element system, widely discussed in many different religions though time and around the world. The elements are Fire, Earth, Air, and Water. We will discuss each one below giving you a small taste for their meaning. The idea here to begin to understand what astrologers mean when they say he has a lot of “water,” or she has a lot of “earth.” The real discovery comes from introspection and observation, though. As you pinpoint the areas of peoples’ lives most affected by any given element in a birth chart or couples chart, you will truly begin to see how the elements come alive. Remember we all have each one of these elements in our personal makeup. Lets get started!
It all starts with fire! Much of what we understand about the order of the elements was derived form sacred geometry and the study of the plutonic solids. Fire represents the first stage of the evolution of the solids: a tetrahedron.
Fire whispers the secrets of passion, energy, warmth, and possibility. With fire anything of importance will have a profound sense of excitement and purpose.
Passion ~ Energy ~ Inspiration
Consider little Billy.
Little Billy is sitting at the back of a classroom. He is carefully whittling away the edge of his desk with renewed purpose as the professor drones on about multiplication. It is a safe assumption that Billy only has a tangential understanding that math is being discussed. As much as he wants to please his mother with a passing grade on the next test he remains aloof. Then a classmate asks a simple question. “Mis. Tulum could multiplication be used in the school garden?” The professor lights up! The garden is her pet project and the most exciting part of being a teacher. She goes on to explain how you can use multiplication to count ears of corn and Billy absorbs every single word.
It doesn’t matter so much if Billy is interested in the garden, the professors passion, or dispassion, lets him know if the information is worthwhile in the first place. On a core level the question is: “If the teacher isn’t excited about this why should I be.”
Lets take another example with Sue and Greg.
Sue and Greg started dating 3 months ago. Still in the honeymoon phase Greg is head over heals in love, but Sue doesn’t trust that he really likes her. After some conversation it becomes unveiled that Sue and Greg work together, and have been working to keep their relationship secret from their co-workers. Greg gets a kick out of the game of it, and sue has fun as well at times, but can’t shake off this feeling he doesn’t really love her.
Fire likes truth to be open, celebrated, and in full force. Their little game had unintended consequences. Sue’s feels love though fire and is supported when Greg goes out of his way to celebrate his love for her. When he shows this love to others with pride. By hiding, and even minimizing, his feelings he was subconsciously telling Sue it wasn’t real to him. Greg on the other hand only needed to look into her eyes and softly brush his hand though her hair for a split second to know she was in love, we’ll get to that later when we talk about water.
What type of energy and spirit does one embody as they go about their life? What does this orientation say about the tasks they do and the beliefs they hold? That is the wisdom of fire. Fire learns from the passion and dispersion towards a person, idea, or event. When upset fire is an energy that says that too, loudly. Making sure that everyone else gets it. Fire burns though pretenses looking for truth though how people are affected by each circumstance or belief.
Earth is Mother Nature’s wisdom. It is the second solid represented by the cube. Earth feeds off of what has been proven over time, or reflected in nature. Nature, as in important side note, is the accumulation of thousands of years of trial and error. What is physical, historical, long lasting, and necessary hold great meaning.
Practical ~ Stable ~ Grounded
Lets take quick look at Alex’s house.
Alex could best be described as a 70’s hippy who fell in love with pottery. He has dedicated most of his life to his art and when you stroll though his home you see far more than an attention to detail. In no way is Alex a neat freak, though clean and orderly, rather much of his house is a work of art that could only have taken years to produce. Every walkway is a cascading piece of art. Not always pretty ether, but captured nonetheless with cement, stone, clay, and at times color. He has rooms full of pots, a very impressive kiln, and tattoos up his arms.
What is real for Alex is what he can get his hands on. Crazy theories, or fun journeys are much less important to him than what can actually be done before his eyes at his home/workspace.
Susan is the last person at work you will ask to join you to lunch but probably the first person you will go to if something goes wrong. She shows up early every day, and has an unparalleled ability to see past the commotion of your predicament to the exact problem that needs to be solved. Without fanfare or fluster, but perhaps a smirk of disapproval, she will nonchalantly save your day.
Earth can also have is utilitarian edge to it. Sometimes things just need to get done and someone has to do it. Earth can be very logical in this approach. Setting aside the emotional roller-coaster earth will do what’s best. Remember, Mother Nature was never accused of being too timid.
Earth embodies and aspires to the wisdom of nature. Proof isn’t an idea; it is standing before you, mocking everything else as an illusion.
Air is our logic, understanding, playful curiosity, and the expansion into possibility. Life and relationships should be beautify and harmonious. You get there by understanding concepts and people in their full complexity. As the third solid air is represented by the octagon.
Conceptual ~ Logic ~ Vision
Fascinated but unmoved.
Katie is one of the most social people Jill has ever met, but gets the feeling that she is far too gullible. Jill and Katie go out to dinner with friends, and Jill introduces her to her co-worker Phil. Quite embarrassingly, Phil starts ranting on and on about his conspiracy theory of the new world order. To Jill’s surprise Jill watches Katie sit there and eat it up. Jill hangs on ever word and keeps boosting Phil for his brilliance. Later that night Katie picks up on Jill’s distain for the theory and casually lets her know that she doesn’t think the new world order is happening either. Jill becomes even more upset and accuses Katie of being fake. She then goes on in great detail to explain why Phil is wrong.
What is often missed in these interactions is that Air likes logic. Logic is playful, if not grand. Katie enjoys getting to hear any well thought through interconnected web of meaning. She holds a genuine appreciation for it and is very comfortable with the fact that her reality is different than Phil’s. Jill also listened to every word of Phil’s, but painfully. Katie can feel in her gut Phil is either right or wrong and it must be figured out, and agreed upon based on the facts. These are both air.
Tom just spent the better part of his work morning doing something other than work. It is not unusual to get caught in a daydream, but this is a devious deviation from work that holds a special meaning to him. He has been carefully composing a letter to the most caring, beautiful women he just went on a date with. Taking special note to touch upon each area of fascination they spoke about the night before he hopes to paint a picture of just how wonderful their connection is and the clock hits 11:15 am…
Tom didn’t just have fun on his date, his attraction, in part, comes from his vision of how things could be together into the future. He gets an opportunity to surf through his thoughts and piece together a beautiful world of possibilities for her in much the way a bowerbird would build a beautiful nest to attract his mate.
Air does not just want things to make since it wants them to be beautiful and harmonious. When everything interconnects just perfectly there is an aha moment. Long before anything actually happens there can even be a celebration, because what is possible is also in it of itself its own sort of truth. Truth is built into understanding, metaphor, and logical deduction. What is possible is real and what is not never existed, the mind itself should be able to discover everything.
Water is the most odd element to write about because it is anything but the linear thinking mind. Water is the forth element and is represented by the dodecahedron. It represents emotions. We must understand that waves of emotion are powerful embodiments of strength and meaning.
Emotions ~ Intuition ~ Nurturing
Stacy and Sam went on a date.
Sam opens the door to a smile that melts his heart. Never before has he felt so loved as her eyes kiss him with their shy fluttering. Lost in conversation everything is going very well. Driving to dinner they see a dead deer on the side of the road. It is sad to Sam but Stacy gets very quite and is obviously very upset. She cries a little but mostly holds her composure. The waves of sadness pay no attention to her labors on this front. Sam can say nothing right, and decided to go silent too. He feels like he is missing something big. After some time she lets out a large breath of air and changes the subject. Dinner is great, and by the time he drops her off that night they are laughing and she expresses how she cant wait to see him again. Two days later he leaves her a message… two weeks later she responds.
Far too often people with strong water elements are written off as unstable, when in some respects they have a more healthy relationship with their emotions than most of us. As a child Stacy probably experienced every single emotion every day, from laughing and to crying to anger and frustration. With him she was fully present and Sam loved that, but the same is true when she is away from him. She is fully present with other things and for the better part of a week kept being pulled away from getting back to him.
Harry and Eric walk out of a very important business meeting.
Harry can’t be more excited. The numbers are perfect. This is what they have been working on for the last 3 years. Eric wasn’t celebrating though. He knew why Harry was so excited. He also knew he had no logical reason not to go along with the deal. At the same time he didn’t like how it felt talking to the client. He couldn’t sleep that night and the next morning told Harry they should keep looking… Harry demanded logic and there was nothing to offer.
While Eric may have just been nervous, it is also possible that his read of the client picked up on an ulterior motive, or even a major personality clash that was bound to come crashing though the business later on. What is clear is that somewhere his subconscious was putting on the breaks and he couldn’t ignore how he felt.
In the same way that we may look out upon coast and watch the sea crashing before us with our feet in the sand, and the sun shining upon us, there must be an intrinsic understanding that waves of emotion hold great power. Whether timid, or enticing to only the most experienced surfer, these waves demand their important through felt experience. The wisdom behind water is that is rushes us with our subconscious though felt experience. It often won’t explain why though.
Water is far more than just emotions like sadness, happiness, and fear. It is the individual and collective energy present at each moment translated into direct embodied experience.
Want to stay up to date on articles and workshops?
Subscribe to my Awesome Newsletter.