The Sun is the central integrating factor of the entire horoscope and represents cellular vitality and the body’s ability to slough off disease. Under the rulership of Leo, the Sun governs the physical heart but influences the solar plexus chakra, the seat of will power and creative actualisation. It is also the seat of Agni, the digestive fire and metabolism and hence is implicated in situations of toxic overload and a generally sluggish system.
The Moon represents the fluid capacity of the cell and is vital for the correct function of cellular exchange (a Mercury ruled process). The combination of Sun and Moon represents the cell where the Sun is the energetic principle and the Moon is the vital fluid component, the watery matrix of life. Together they determine cellular integrity and inter cellular exchange as governed by the day / night cycle. The Moon, as ruler of Cancer, concerns all feminine matters as well as governing the Thymus gland. Hereditary conditions also fall under the power of the Moon due to Cancer’s natural rulership of the 4th house. Because the Moon is receptive to the contents of the sub-conscious, disharmony manifested by the Moon often reflects deep seated psychological issues that can be difficult to ascertain.
The Moon has complex associations. It represents the Soul’s current egocentric structure and self-image, the seat of the Ego and the development of the personality (the shield with which we protect ourselves from, and interact with, the outer world); relates to the past, to parental conditioning and through the action of the subconscious, to habit formation; it governs the hormones of the thymus gland which influence sexual development; and is seen as the vehicle of the Soul as represented by Pluto.
Because the Moon accepts the impressions of conditioning, it can be likened to the astral light that conveys the pattern of the universe from the source to manifestation. This conditioning is through the impressions of our mental thought forms / images (Mercury) and the feeling nature (Venus) which become mechanical in nature through the force of habit. This is another important concept in that our habits based upon past actions hold us to ransom on the wheel of samsara, the endless revolutions of the wheel of suffering. We are slaves to the mechanical subconscious nature of the Moon. At its best, the Moon acts as the focusing lens of the Soul but to most this will be imperceptible because of the accumulation of psychic aggregates that cloud our perception and colour every thought, feeling and action.
With the Moon corresponding to memory it can be seen that beyond the remembering of past lives or our normal memory processes, it is through the non-dual memory of the Moon that we remember our original face, that of our Soul. This is the secret of the higher meaning of the Moon and why we must venture through the subconscious processes to arrive at a fully conscious and individuated self (the Sun) from which we can remember (intuit) the light of our Soul (Pluto). It is through this abstract process of remembering that awakening occurs.
There is also a connection between the Thymus/Moon and the nurturing mother’s breast milk which activates the new born child’s own thymus gland and immune system. Dairy based milk substitutes contain casein and lactose and are high in protein and lack the delicate proportion of essential vitamins and minerals that the mother’s body naturally produces, not to mention the subtle immeasurable etheric and energetic qualities that are essential in producing a healthy and ‘connected’ human being. It is this disconnect between our minds and the energetic principles underlying manifestation which continue to produce disease and dysfunction. Man only creates dry sterile alternatives to nature’s rich and balanced enlivened nutrients because we have yet to fully grasp the laws of manifestation. The best that we can do is to interpret nature.
In addition, learning how to breath correctly also stimulates the function of the thymus and explains why focusing on the breath has so many beneficial side effects in addition to focusing the mind and nourishing the nervous system.
The planet Mercury has multiple functions and as a messenger is involved in all communication systems within the body including correct nerve function, hormone delivery and anything that requires transportation from one area to another via the tubes of the body. Mercury governs the eyes, arms, mind/brain and shares many functions with other planets, especially it’s higher octave found in Uranus. With Venus it rules the thyroid gland and with Mars it assists in the breakdown and delivery of nutrients from the digestive process. Mercury delivers essential nutrients to the cells for their proper functioning and is concerned with the many facets of the digestive system through its rulership of Virgo and the lungs through Gemini.
The relationship between Mercury, as Hermes Trismegistus, and Neptune is through their rulership of the pineal gland and concerned with the transmutation of energy, specifically sexual energy.
The primary action of Venus is in the synthesis of nutrients which it shares with Mercury. Venus is especially concerned with the breakdown of sugars (glucose) and plays an important role in the correct function of the pancreas and the production of insulin. In addition to controlling the levels of copper in the body, Venus also governs the thyroid through rulership of Taurus and the kidneys through Libra. The quality of the hair, as a result of kidney energy, is very much controlled by Venus. A prominent Venus in a chart, where the Mars principle is burdened through outer planet contacts, is indicative of hyperglycaemia or at worse type 1 diabetes where there is too much sugar circulating in the blood as a result of low insulin output. There are many other factors involved but general pictures can be ascertained through planetary aspects.
There is a correspondence between Taurus and the throat chakra, the chakra of clairaudience which is also related with the power of the Word. What’s also interesting to note is that Venus also rules Libra which denotes the power or quality of being able to truly listen to the vibrational energy of the words of another.
With the placement of Venus we can expect to find all issues to do with self esteem and our relationship with food in general. Here, the pleasure and survival principle, as denoted by Taurus /2nd house can become confused with the value and nurturing principle of self esteem through a negative relationship with our selves.
The interplay between Venus and Mars is also evident in the area of metabolism and the anabolic and catabolic processes within the body. A hypo functioning thyroid (typically a Venus to Saturn aspect) will slow down metabolism with consequent affects on weight gain, water retention and depressed mood to name but a few. A hyper functioning thyroid can cause inflammation, mood swings, sensitivity to heat and irritability – all very Martian qualities. Whilst this is descriptive of hypo (Saturn) conditions and hyper (Mars) conditions in general, the anabolic planets build (Venus, Jupiter, Saturn) whilst the catabolic planets (Mars, Mercury, Uranus) break down. (This describes the Kabbalistic qualities of the two side pillars, Ida/Pingala, Postive/Negative, Pillar of Severity/Pillar of Mercy etc within which the phases of the two supernal Sephirah Binah (Saturn) and Chokmah (Uranus) are reversed as the power is stepped down to the next level).
Depending on the source of information I have heard zinc being ruled by Neptune (Marcia Starck), Uranus (Robert Jansky) or Jupiter (Eileen Nauman) but none provide convincing proof for their designations. I’m inclined to assign rulership to Mars simply because of the antagonistic relationship between Copper (Venus) and Zinc. Before the birth of a child, a mother’s copper levels will start to fall and her zinc levels will rise. This is because an infant will have four times the concentration of copper at birth which needs to be balanced out with zinc. It has been shown that incidences of high copper in young adults correlate with emotional dependencies, schizophrenia and anorexia and can lead to addictive behaviour patterns. The correlation exists because zinc, taken in through the mother’s milk, balances out the excess copper at birth with a corresponding reduced risk of these psycho-emotional conditions. Yet another reason to avoid milk substitutes in place of breast feeding. (see Moon).
The Martian principle is evident in its rulership of the blood (production of red and white blood cells), the action of muscles, acute conditions and the adrenal glands. Red blood cells produced by the bone marrow stimulate the absorption of iron which itself is the fuel for the production of new red blood cells. White blood cells are produced to control the destruction of pathogens and hence the efficiency and aggressiveness of the immune system. Mars breaks down just as Venus builds up.
There is much symbolism around Mars that concerns the desire nature that emanates from the Soul (Pluto), energy production, sex drive, aggression and motivation. Many spiritual diets advocate a vegetarian diet as the consumption of red meat stimulates the desire nature, the Fire/Agni aspect of our energy system which can burn too ‘hot’ for those attempting to transcend the carnal desires of the animal soul.
Mars has rulership of Aries which concerns the instinctive and animal impulse and hence has much to do with the adrenal glands and the fight or flight response. Mars is also responsible for the production of inflammation in the body, a natural healing response to congestion caused by toxic (Neptune/Pluto) residues and other influences.
Ingrid Naiman states that: “the Tibetan suggested that Mars and Neptune can never be simultaneously active since both utilize the solar plexus chakra and therefore create an either/or type of situation. If one has devoted oneself to service, self-sacrifice, and perhaps even martyrdom, it goes without saying that Mars has had little opportunity for expression.”
In esoteric circles Mars and Neptune are associated with the 6th Ray of Devotion and Idealism and hence their dual action through the solar plexus chakra.
The combination of Mars and Neptune in aspect can certainly lead to a weakening of the whole system as Neptune undermines the direction and focus of the otherwise directed Martian energy. Any outer planet aspect to the inner planets and the luminaries will tend to swamp that planet with the transformational energy of the outer planet for better or for worse as archetypal forces act upon, and through, the lesser vehicles. The conscious alignment of the principles of the lower planet with the higher allows for a more unconflicted interaction between the two and, although potentially still deeply transformative, a resolution between otherwise disparate energies. It is not an easy accomplishment but the elevation of the lower to the higher is the ultimate goal of evolution.
Depending on your source of information, I have heard Zinc being ruled by Neptune (Marcia Starck), Uranus (Robert Jansky) or Jupiter (Eileen Nauman) but none provide convincing proof for their designations. I’m inclined to assign rulership to Mars simply because of the antagonistic relationship between Copper (Venus) and Zinc.
Thinking Kabbalistically, Jupiter as a higher octave of Venus on the tree of life is also concerned with the synthesis of nutrients, via the function of the Liver. What is broken down by the Mars and Mercury (Pillar of Severity) digestive processes is further processed in the body’s main chemical factory, the liver. This relationship between Jupiter and Venus has to do with the utilisation of Insulin (secreted by the pancreas in response to dietary glucose) for the transport and final breakdown of glucose to be used or stored by the liver as glycogen. Jupiter therefore is also concerned with the production and storage of body fat as evidenced in those whose diets are rich in high calorie nutrients – such as sugar and fat.
It may be that Jupiter correlates with the accumulation of acid in the body through the Jupiterian tendency of over-eating of rich food. The accumulation of acidic residues creates a balancing response from Mars which attempts to cleanse the body through its action of inflammation. The excesses of a modern western diet, fuelled by excessive alcohol consumption, often leads to an inflamed liver and general liver heat which requires the balancing of the excess condition through detoxification and cooling yin foods and remedies. Hence the balancing act of Mars and Jupiter, one encouraging accumulation and the other corruption and reduction. The liver is also influenced by Virgo which discriminates and disseminates that which is useful from that which is waste.
The activation of the master gland the pituitary, ruled by Jupiter and located at the Ajna chakra, creates a spiritual awakening that brings us awareness of our one-ness with the true Source. The pituitary secretes growth and puberty hormones (as you would expect from a rulership of Jupiter) as well as thyroid stimulating hormone which encourages the thyroid to make and release thyroxin which is vital for a number of body processes from heart health to metabolism. This is also why aggressive transits from Jupiter to Venus and/or Mercury are often implicated in hyper-thyroidism which can cause goitre and thyroid eye disease.
Capricorn/Saturn is responsible for the Gall Bladder, hypo functioning of organs because of its constraining action, and the skin as a boundary between ourselves and the outer world.
The calcification of physiological processes, such as in the formation of bone, is Saturn’s main area of influence. Saturn binds and contains and a delicate balance is required between containment and liberation (Uranus) if our physical, mental and emotion beings are not to become clogged with the stagnation of toxic residue caused from a faulty or overburdened elimination (Pluto) process.
The processes described by Saturn have an intimate relationship with the fluid balance in the body because it is Saturn that contains and holds the fluids (Moon). With this in mind we can see how the building blocks of life, proteins (ruled by Saturn), are vital to the containment of cellular activity as it is proteins which surround and give structure to the fluid matrix of the cell. This containment is required for life to occur, but it is the Jupiter ruled cholesterol, which is activated at times of dehydration, that causes the issues associated with the progressive onset of disease.
The interaction between Mars and Saturn is responsible for the production of metabolic acids that need to be eliminated for optimum health. Saturn rules protein which, when broken down, creates acidic by-products. The balance is achieved through the Libran function of the kidneys, so long as the liver (Jupiter) has been able to neutralise excess acidity beforehand, otherwise the acid condition will back up into the blood followed by the lymph, manifesting as various ailments along the way. The Gemini ruled Lungs also play a role in the elimination of acidic residues through the balancing of body pH levels.
There is an important relationship between Saturn (Calcium) and Mars (Sodium) with the notorious pairing of the planets being implicated in some way with almost all chronic health conditions. From a biochemical perspective it is the action of calcium and sodium upon the cell, in contrast to that of Magnesium (Sun) and Potassium (Moon), which creates the acidic environment as a natural consequence of body metabolism. The build up of acidity in the cells occurs naturally throughout the day and is a cause of our eventual tiredness and a trigger for sleep, during which magnesium and potassium re-enter the cell leaving us invigorated, alkalised and energised for a new day….ideally. Through stressful lifestyles and poor eating habits the cell is improperly cleansed and so upon awaking we are neither energised nor properly detoxified from the previous day. Understanding this day night cycle is at the core of nutritional therapy as the proper choice of food can either contribute or alleviate accumulated acidity/toxicity through balancing the pH. (see Nutritional Therapy and the Foundation of Health for more details).
Nerve impulses that travel the nervous system and the fine intricate web of etheric energy known as Chi are ruled and influenced by Uranus. Chi is intimately connected to the breath, another Uranus principle which acts through and is captured by the Mercury ruled Lungs. Uranus can create erratic organ functioning unless balanced by the earthing Saturn principle.
Uranus also symbolises awakening which can only occur in the moment. You cannot awaken consciousness with astrology or kabbalah becasue they are symbolic systems, they can only help us on our path to awakening. You can only awaken consciousness by actively using consciousness itself, they arise together as a stochastic process – the purposeful randomness or Strange Loops of Joeseph Cilton Pearce. The breath is used to establish a centre of gravity in our consciousness that enables the realisation of something other than the perpetual ‘I’ and hence the breath and its organ of expression, the lungs, and its channel of transmission, the nervous system, are all related to the planet Uranus and Aquarius.
Uranus rules Potassium due to its reactivity and has an antagonistic relationship with Martian ruled Sodium. With the abundant Jupiter ruled Magnesium, Potassium is essential for proper intra-cellular activity regulating as it does the cellular membrane potential and the free flow of ions across that membrane. Universal Chi force is the energising principle that enlivens the cell through Potassium and it’s interesting to note that shortness of breath can be related to low potassium levels which affects blood circulation, via the heart, to the lungs.
Neptune is the principle of consciousness itself, the Source, the One Truth, the spiritual essence, God. The power of Neptune stepped down to the physical level is disruptive to anything that is contained or bound in some way. Where Uranus disrupts through shattering and sudden shocking events that cause trauma, the diffuse Neptune erodes the walls over time until they start to crumble. It works slowly and is often the energy behind chronic life threatening health conditions where there is no foreseeable resolution or cause. Much like Mars Saturn aspects, Neptune in aspect to Saturn or in a midpoint picture has this same feared reputation when it comes to health conditions.
With the Moon, Neptune controls the body’s fluid balance but also rules poisons and toxins and prominently positioned in a chart can indicate someone who is sensitive to medication or drugs in general. The relationship to cellular toxicity can be explored through Neptune’s aspects to others planets, including midpoints, and by its house and sign position. Neptune weakens bodily processes and hence can create sluggish organs and a condition of general malaise. Lethargy is often the result of a toxic/sluggish lymphatic system which also falls under Neptune’s domain. The relationship with Mars at the solar plexus level as mentioned previously (see Mars) can see Neptune negatively effect energy levels when the light of consciousness is blocked from entering at the cellular level.
It is possible that Homeopathy is Neptune ruled due to the doctrine of ‘like curing like’ and who’s affect can be negligible in those with chronic dehydration.
As well as being representational of the Soul, Pluto rules transformation at a cellular level and hence cellular metabolism and enzyme production and activity, for good or for bad. It also rules the endocrine system, the elimination system, especially the colon, biological activity, genetics and the reproductive system. Pluto can strengthen an organ but also cause it to atrophy. Pluto can affect health negatively or positively through the action of the subconscious mind.
Within the archetype of Pluto, the Soul, exsist two separating desires – one desire pulls us away from Source and the other yearns to return. The desire to return pushes us beyond existing limitations and constraints whilst the desire to separate from Source is the desire for worldly experience, the creative impulse that gives new form to the transcendent urge in the world. As mentioned in Uranus, this unfolds as purposeful randomness, a stochastic process, that describes a continually oscillating movement between two complementary impulses and is cyclical in nature until, gradually over time, all separating desires have been purged through the melting pot of experience.