If there were a way to make astrology more complicated, throwing in four elements would be it. What would further complicate that is throwing in words like fixed, mutable, and cardinal, but that’s an exploration for another day. Learning how the four elements are used and supported in astrology can level up your relationship with not only the zodiac, but with yourself. Elements are often considered life-giving sources and working with the elements of the zodiac signs can help you understand yourself in more ways than one.
There are four elements, which are the same as the ones found in nature: air, earth, fire, and water. Each of these elements have three corresponding zodiac signs. The corresponding signs are as follows:
Air: Gemini, Libra, & Aquarius
Earth: Taurus, Virgo, & Capricorn
Fire: Aries, Leo, & Sagittarius
Water: Pisces, Cancer, & Scorpio
Why is that zodiac sign that particular element?
In the same way that the four elements are the basic building blocks of our world, they’re also basic building blocks of each zodiac sign. Each zodiac sign has a unique personality and characteristics that can be attributed to a specific element, based on its unique makeup. For example, an Aries is considered a fire sign because much like the element of fire, it’s impulsive, passionate, packed with energy, and quick. Further, a Scorpio is considered a water sign because much like water, Scorpios are known for flowing– especially in and out of their emotions– in the way that water moves.
What are the characteristics of each element?
Air signs are communicative, social, and intellectual. They like all things talking and listening, and most importantly thinking. In the same way that air rises, so does the energy of air signs and they spend a lot of their time in their heads. Think about that one friend that overthinks a lot– that’s an air sign vibe. Air signs are always on the go, moving from project to project and task to task. They like to float and cruise through, creating buzz and excitement wherever they go. They’re incredibly out of the box with their creativity and can often see things from a big-picture view.
Earth signs are the home bodies of the zodiac. They’re rooted, grounded, and at ease. They’re quite practical people, considerate of all the facts, and usually very stable, predictable people. Earth signs are good with long-term vision and long-term commitments because so often, they’re quite anchored in their intentions. And while their methodic tendencies do see success arrive naturally to them, they’re the slowest signs of the zodiac and usually very resistant to change.
Hot, fiery, and action-oriented is the name of the game for fire signs. Think about the Beyonce of your group chat– that’s a fire sign. Fire signs are spontaneous, ambitious, enigmatic and passionate. They’re often incredible leaders with hearts of gold. They can be quite indecisive, though, as they’re always so quick and fast-paced. Fire signs have no problem being the centre of attention, which is why they make for great personalities in the spotlight.
Those with heavy water placements are emotional bodies. Water signs often live too far in their emotions or too far out. They are sensitive, intuitive, and spiritual people. They’re quite often go with the flow people, making up their minds as they go. They’re incredibly empathetic, often living as much in the emotions of others as they do in their own. It can be hard to get them to break out of their shell. Water signs make for great healers and mystics, mostly because of how well they’re able to place themselves in the shoes of others.
How to use the elements to understand yourself better
The elements that correspond with our zodiac sign – our sun sign, moon sign, and rising sign– can all reveal particular pain points in our behaviours. For example, if you’re a Libra and you know the element related to your sign is air, you might find that you’re an overthinker who thinks yourself into oblivion. Or if you’re a Pisces, you might find that you’re someone who has a hard time managing and expressing your emotions, which can be attributed to the water element in your chart. Because the elements are life-giving source, they point out parts of ourselves that we have to come to learn more about and honour with love.
And while the elements point out the pain points, they empower us through these pain points, too. The air element in your chart that causes you to overthink might reveal that perhaps you have to work harder on grounding yourself and clearing your mind. Or the water element in your chart might ask you to strengthen your relationship with boundaries so that you’re not picking up the emotions of others. Whatever the case, the elements are invitation for us to form a stronger relationship with ourselves.
Approaching life through the lens of the elements
Another great way to incorporate the wisdom of the elements into your life is to look for the hidden meanings and metaphors imbedded in all the elements, not just those that correspond to your zodiac sign. The same elements that are the building blocks of the world and the zodiac are the same building blocks of our nature and behaviours. We can look to the wisdom of each of the elements to help move through any obstacle, any challenge, and any healing work that we may be called to explore. Allow the tenacity of air, the mindfulness of the earth, the passion of the fire, and the intuition of the water guide you through your journey.