Saturday, August 23, 2014

VIRGO ~ Sign and Type.

 Virgo from Erté's Zodiac Sign Collection
As the Sun reaches the Leo/Virgo cusp, a look at a few less commonly chanted traits of the sign through which the Sun is about to glide during the next four weeks: Virgo. Virgo's planetary ruler is Mercury. Mercury also rules Gemini.

Digressing for a moment, and considering the mystery of sign rulerships. I don't understand why communications planet Mercury doesn't rule the Air signs (Gemini, Aquarius, Libra). Air is thought to be the most mentally oriented of the four astrological elements: Earth, Water, Fire and Air.

Everything we humans do is initiated in the brain, even what seem like emotional responses, though coloured by Moon and the Watery element, actually do begin in the mental realm. As I see it, we ought to pay more attention to Mercury in the natal chart - equally as much as to Sun, Moon and ascendant.

In an Aquarian-driven, typically obtuse version of astrological rulerships, I propose that Saturn could rule the Earth signs (Taurus, Virgo, Capricorn). Fire signs(Aries, Leo, Sagittarius) would be ruled by Mars. Water signs by Venus (Cancer, Scorpio and Pisces). Mercury would rule the Air signs Gemini, Libra and Aquarius. But then, what would Jupiter do? Jupiter would have to rule over-all, in true Jupiterian expansionist fashion! It would be acceptable for Sun and Moon not to rule signs, they are luminaries, different from planets. The outer planets, Uranus Neptune and Pluto are too far away to rule anything, they will simply make themselves felt in transit when connecting with, or aspecting, personal planets.

Mercury's rulership of Gemini seems obvious: the consummate communicator, teacher, the all-round information collector. As ruler of Virgo, Mercury must be reflected as less abstract, more tangible. Virgo seeks and usually achieves near perfection in just about anything undertaken. Gemini roves around in the world of words and ideas, gathering them together, regurgitating them, sometimes in light-weight haphazard fashion, offering them back to a usually enthusiastic audience. Virgo is quite capable of doing this too, but with a far greater emphasis on accuracy and presentation - a more serious approach.

I do think Mercury's rulership of Virgo to be rather strange. To my mind strict, structure-loving Saturn would seem more compatible with perfection-seeking sign, Virgo. I'm probably missing something at a deeper level.

More on Virgo then...

I'm guided by 20th century British astrologer C.E.O. Carter and his piece

 By David Palladini (1970)
Mr Carter sometimes sounds as though he considers there's a person who, born between two specified dates, could properly and proudly carry the label "Virgo" on his or her tee-shirt. I'm pretty sure this well-respected astrologer thought nothing of the sort. Urged to write or speak on individual zodiac signs, as he often must have been, he decided to take the easiest way out.

As I've said, many times in these posts, "there's no such thing as "a Virgo", "a Leo", "a Scorpio" or any other such zodiac sign-labelled individual. Those are sign labels not people labels!

A person could have Sun in Sagittarius, or any other zodiac sign, and still exhibit many Virgo attributes due to a variety of combinations of planetary placements, points, and aspects in their chart. He or she could then be called a Virgo-type, if one insisted on attaching a label, as could a person with Sun in Virgo, if the traits fit - and they don't always.

So, passing reader, it's my opinion that we should look on whatever astrologers write or say, when using that sign-label type of shorthand ("a Leo" "a Virgo" etc.) as simply writing or speaking of a particular type who may or may not have Sun in the sign in question, but demonstrates a majority of character traits related to that sign.

And so...eventually...a few less commonly mentioned Virgo-type traits as listed by Mr Carter within his piece linked above, which is a good read in full by the way:

Whilst Leo and Virgo are as different as chalk from cheese,
with only a few exceptions, Virgo and Libra [the next adjoining sign]
have a good deal in common...both, for example, have taste in literature and art
and dislike rough and uncouth things.

... interested in dietetics and often have their private fads
and fancies in that respect.

... their alleged sensitiveness. Most Virginians
have a pose of being sensitive. It is, of
course, the sign of the inferiority complex, although this
is not to say that all natives of Virgo are afflicted in
this way or that all so afflicted are born under Virgo.
Still, in principle I think Virgo stands for this sense of
personal inadequacy, which in a world as complex and
difficult as ours has become, with ever higher standards of
efficiency set before it, is an easily understood

Another point is that by their very nature the Mercurials
notice and think a lot about details and what seem to your
Jovian to be trivialities. This may appear to be
sensitiveness to some, and in other cases one must dub them
fussy and for ever making mountains out of mole-hills.
This tendency is best sublimated by their taking up some
occupation that entails much attention to small matters,
such as watch-mending or embroidery.
So much for the maiden-archetype in its everyday

In a higher (presentation), it is the virgin mother of the new-born Sun,
since the constellation Virgo rises in the east at midnight
at the winter solstice when the sun is "in the tomb" for
three days before beginning afresh his climb into northern

The sheaf of corn would imply that Virgo is often and
agriculturalist. This is probably true. We do not come
across many nativities of farmers, since they are a race
that is as a rule too occupied with the soil to aspire to
understand the heavens, but I suspect we should find plenty
of Virgo in most of their maps. This would agree with the
liking that many, but not all,Virgos show for small animals,
traditionally up to and including the ass, but not the horse.

Still talking of animals, I am reminded of Benjamin, the
donkey in Orwell's Animal Farm. Being invited to admire the
goodness of the Creator who had thoughtfully provided him
with a tail wherewith to flick away flies, Benjamin remarked
sourly that he would have been more impressed if there had
been no flies and no need for tails. This is a very true
specimen of Virgo philosophy.

A virtue often ascribed to Virginians is a capacity for
hard work, especially routine drudgery such as Leo and Libra
would soon tire of. I regret to say that I have known
Virgos who were anything but industrious. The only sign
which really likes hard work is Scorpio.


Gigi said...

This reminds me of something Stevie Smith, the quirky poet, said. She was born under the sign of Virgo.Off the top of my head, it went something like "I have come to the conclusion that astrologers just don't like Virgo. They are always describing Virgos as good little secretaries, adept at tidying sock drawers. All the glamourous traits are reserved for other signs" ;)

As you say, there is no such thing as a "Virgo", but it does seem as if newspaper astrologers, for want of a better word, have some notion of Virgo-types as boring little fusspots, obsessed with the state of their bowels, but jolly useful when it comes to doing your tax returns for you...

I can't see Saturn as the natural ruler of Virgo. Saturnian energy is too heavy. Mercury is quite fitting. If Gemini is the journalist, Virgo is the editor.

mike said...

Ah, those nit-picking, critical, detail-oriented martyrs! Or should I say industrious, tidy, discriminating, and helpful?

I was conceived by two Virgos born two weeks apart, the same year. I've had an unusually skewed number of Virgo acquaintances and friends. I possess very strong opinions of the sign Virgo and most are not flattering. A few of my observations:
- their view of details obscures the bigger picture
- others' problems are more fun to fix than their own
- they were born to offer advice, particularly when none is desired
- they are perfect, except for one or two minor "things"
- coercion by nagging
- life is not meant to be's a duty

OK, now that I've got that off my chest, I feel better...LOL. Yes, it's unfair to generalize astrology, but individuals with their Sun in Virgo are much easier for me to recognize...I have Virgo radar...Virgodar. Takes one to know one perhaps, as I have Moon, Saturn, and South Node in Virgo...Saturn-S Node conjunct.

Speaking of generalizing Sun signs:

Make sure you toggle "The Congressional Zodiac Horse Race" between Democrat and Republican...they are mirror images. Maybe there IS more to Sun signs than I've given credit.

Gigi said...

That was highly amusing, Mike. ;) Oh those talkie-two-faced Gems! I wasn't suprised to see them in poll position...

The South Node is what a person is moving away from, isn'tit? What you already know, and don't need to go back over. No wonder you have Virgodar. With a South Node, in Sag, I find it is not at all helpful to me to get tied up in Sag topics. Basically, it brings out the worst in me and really gets up other people's noses at the same time ;)

Twilight said...

Gigi ~ Sun sign astrologers, on the whole, and those I tend not to enjoy, do tend to run with just one side of Virgo (and most signs) - though I've just checked my copy of Jonathan Cainer's "Guide to the Zodiac"
his take is very fair, quite affectionate in fact towards Virgo.

Saturn and "heavy"? Hmm - I don't see Saturn that way. Restrictive, limiting, structured, time-sensitive, but not exactly heavy. I'm sure it's one of the planet's keywords though - just one I don't sense myself. :-)

Twilight said...

mike ~ Oh dear! LOL! Well you were able to let off a wee bit of Virgo steam there. :-)

If a person is a strong Virgo-type, it is going to be fairly easy to recognise, because their key well-known traits are all going to be on display; whereas some other signs' traits tend to be inwardly manifesting, so not always obvious to a casual onlooker.

Thanks for the link. Oh my! Interesting - in a Sun Sign kind of way. As you say, toggling Dem/Repub does throw up a kind of mirror image. How odd!

I wonder whether the astrological "era" plays into how this particular research would pan out. I wonder if a similar exercise done for a different part of 20th century would offer similar results. Just a thought.

Twilight said...

I came across some writings of a Virgo Sun person (not sure whether he's Virgo-type or not from this samling) but his unique writing style appeals to me a lot.

Eduardo Galeano - an excerpt from his book "Mirrors" appeared at Common Dreams this week - originated at the Tom Dispatch blog.

"Century of Disaster"

Twilight said...

Tsk ~ Blogger should splash out some of their $$$$$$$ and provide a comment editing device such as other comment systems use.

"samling" - I meant to type sampling.

Gigi said...

Twlilight. I am pretty sure "eras" have a lot to do with how popular astrologers privilege certain traits and by extension the "Sun Signs" they associate with them. c19 astologers tended to big up what they thought of as being Fire sign archetypes - martial, expansive, enterprising etc etc, all the things the characteristics that were then publically exalted.

Cainer is rather more than affectionate towards virgo-types; he seems quite an awe of them in some ways. Which is sweet. ;)

I think Virgoan-energy is somewhat misunderstood. It isn't really about nit-picking, and pulling people up on their shaky grammar or mismatched wardrobe. I would see it as a kind of search for clarity - what is true and what is not, what is useful and what isn't, what is important and what is not so important.

The devil is in the detail - a very Virgoan-type phrase. ;)

Twilight said...

Gigi ~ ah yes, astrologers' views of signs in different eras would vary, sure enough. I wonder whether the mix of political notables in the senate (or other forms of government) would vary too in different eras, due to outer planets' generational shifts. Or would Sun signs stay "true" to form over time, whatever else is going on in outer reaches?

I find, from my own experience, and for example, that Aquarius Sun with Uranus in Taurus is different in subtle ways from Aquarius Sun with Uranus in Gemini (for instance). Maybe depending on where co-ruler Saturn is too. those differences could steer Aqua-types towards or away from politics, I suppose.

Virgo, and every sign, can be seen in lots of different ways, it seems. One's own astrology has to play into one's own specific way of interpreting the basic bones of what astrology texts have taught us. I like your version.

I usually get on well with a Virgo-type person, but I'm quite glad not to be one - far too demanding, not enough freedom!

Gigi said...

Yes, I quite agree that Sun-Sign astrology might be quite misleading if you took snapshots of the composition of legislative assemblies in different countries at different historical periods. it's a bit of a giggle, no more. For a start, it assumes that politicians are the ones running the show, and don't think that has ever been true.

I seem to remember reading a very long time ago that most US Presidents had prominent Scorpio - whether that was true, or not, I have no idea, but there are so many ways that Scorpio might feature in a natal chart, that you could probably pick any other sign or house placement governed by that alternative sign and build a case for it as equally significant too ;) Cups of salt needed.

Most Virgo natives are going to have personal planets in the adjacent signs of Leo and Libra as well - so you could get some fiery and/or airy Virgos who won't tidy your sock drawer for you. in fact, might expect you to do it, for them, or to hold your end up in a sock-tidying contract. Or form a Union of sock-tidiers, or write a book about sock-tidying and the Stock Market: new revelations! Or go with out socks at all on a point of principle or out of sheer distraction and lack of interest in the whole subject.

As to "the point" of Virgo-energy, I think it is about just that: asking "What is the point?"

Twilight said...

Gigi~ Lol! I enjoyed your variety of possible sock drawer policies. :-D

Yep - Sun Virgo varieties will be many for a variety of reasons, depending on individual charts. Some of the textbook keywords could be well and truly crossed out, erased, redacted or whatever by other signs' keywords. I suppose there'll always be a core of Virgo in there somewhere though, if only known to their nearests and dearests.

"What is the point?" : The Virgo philosophical core, agreed. There's another facet of it in the donkey's tail story mentioned by CEO Carter

... I am reminded of Benjamin, the
donkey in Orwell's Animal Farm. Being invited to admire the
goodness of the Creator who had thoughtfully provided him
with a tail wherewith to flick away flies, Benjamin remarked
sourly that he would have been more impressed if there had
been no flies and no need for tails. This is a very true
specimen of Virgo philosophy.

mike (again) said...

LOL, GiGi!

Twilight, the excerpts from Eduardo Galeano's book are worthy of praise. I looked at his astrology:
-Mercury-Sun-Mars conjunct in Virgo
-Moon in late Virgo or early Libra
-Jupiter-Saturn conjunct in Taurus
-Uranus in Taurus trine Neptune in Virgo with Venus in Cancer sextile to both

A very pleasant natal chart.

Twilight said...

mike (again) ~ Glad you agree. I'm tempted to seek out one of his books.

His astrology is harmonious, and economical in its spread too (very Virgo - economy!) Just 4 signs used out of 12! :-)

Gigi said...

Lol, yes, the donkey's philosophy is an excellent example of Virgoan-thinking.

I also think Twilight hit it on the head with the word "economy." Sun Sign astrologers, who after all are playing to the widest possible audience, often present this as "meanness" or "looking for a bargain".

It's closer to Occam's Razor: Don't waste your mental or physical energy on exhausting every possible explanation or course of action when examining a problem. Figure out what are the minimal steps you need to take, either logically, or in practical terms, to reach a workable solution. Anything else is a misuse of mind or body. Virgo-types have great respect for the mind and body and don't see them as essentially separate.

And like the donkey, Virgo-types hate "slick answers". Don't spin them a line. They literally can't bear it ;)

of course, at its worst, Virgo-energy is that of the eternal critic - "Don't do it like that - Do it like this!" But I see a very unhappy thwarted Virgoan-energy there. At its best, it works out the point, communicates it and really does not expect or want any kudos or congratulations for doing so.

Twilight said...

Gigi ~ Thanks - all good stuff to digest and remember.

I've just pulled Robert Hand's
"Horoscope Symbols" from my shelf, to see whether he has anything out of the ordinary to add.

There's a para. on "The Effect of Virgo on Planets" - writing expressly about the sign and not the type (for a change!) -

The principal effect of Virgo on planets is to make them work with extra precision and care. Planets with exuberant and explosive energies (like Mars & Uranus) do not get along as well in Virgo as those (like Saturn) whose nature is steady and cautious. Whether or not Mercury rules Virgo, it is favorably placed there. Venus does seem to do well in Virgo from a sexual point of view, because Virgo, as its name suggests, tends to be sexually modest. But Venus in Virgo is more successful with regard to creativity, especially of the craftsmanly kind.

Because it is interested in dealing efficiently with the physical universe, Virgo can be changeable when it perceives new contingencies that have to be met. Also its lack of self-confidence can cause it to change according to the pressures to which it is subjected. Therefore a large number of planets in Virgo will tend to increase the mutability of the horoscope as well as its level of earthiness.

Hmm. I have only Neptune in Virgo, along with my whole generation, but mine is in trine to Mercury in Capricorn and Uranus in Taurus, so I can claim to be an in-law to Virgo.
Actually, I can in fact too because my husband's elder daughter has 5 planets in Virgo - in newspaper biz for most of her life - edits quite naturally as though she'd been born to it - and she was, as it happens. :-)

Gigi said...

"Venus does seem to do well in Virgo from a sexual point of view, because Virgo, as its name suggests, tends to be sexually modest".

I am laughing so hard, I can hardly breathe:) "Sex with a virgin". Gimmie a break.

If I have to go down this line, and i really don't want to, I would say Virgoan-energy translated to the sexual realm would make for one very sophisticated courtesan. it's all a question of technique, as a Virgo would say. And definitely not one with a "heart of gold", who would fall in love with her clients. Virgo's razor: you pay your money, you get you deal. No more, no less.

I like the quote: "Because it is interested in dealing efficiently with the physical universe, Virgo can be changeable when it perceives new contingencies that have to be met". Good one. This ability is seriously under-rated, in my view. It's not that Virgo-energy is unprincipled and opportunistic - it is that it recognises exactly where the rubber hits the road. Ideas have to be made to work. In the physical world. If they don't then, why waste your time? Or go looking for martyrdom? Loss of mental and physical energy - for what? Virgo-types are very good at ideas, by the way. Precisely because they "get them" so fast, they don;t have a huge amount of respect for ideas per se.

I like what you said about an irreducible core of Virgo-ness that comes out, no matter how scattered the natal chart. True, for other signs as well.

I have practically everything bunched in Scorpio or the 8th House (ruled by Scorpio) but that Virgo sun keeps me from ever identifying with the Scorpio-energies. I look at them and say: well, well, well. How useful are you? Not a Scorpio question at all ;)

Twilight said...

Gigi ~ LOL! I considered putting a comment in brackets after the Venus in Virgo remark by Robt. Hand in the quote, to the effect that "other astrologers have a different view!" Thought better of it.
I'm in no position to know one, personally, way or t'other. ;-)

Scorpio and Virgo eh? You and mike have similar astrological signatures then, if I recall correctly. Interesting! :-)

Twilight said...

Dang another edit...typed "one way or t'other" and it appeared ass about face. :-)

James Higham said...

As I've said, many times in these posts, "there's no such thing as "a Virgo", "a Leo", "a Scorpio" or any other such zodiac sign-labelled individual. Those are sign labels not people labels!

Ah, I'll need to remember that.

mike (again) said...

If I understand GiGi's statement, GiGi is an Aquarius rising with Sun in Virgo, 8th house. I have Sun (plus Mercury and Venus) in Scorpio, 6th house (Virgo rules 6th) we are inverse. And you have some of the same signatures as GiGi, too, Twilight, with your 8th house Sun and I think you have stated previously that you have Venus in the 6th.

James Higham, I could be wrong, but I thought you stated in at least one previous post that you relegate astrology to the fiction section of your beliefs, regardless of Sun-sign qualities...LOL.

Twilight said...

James Higham ~ Hi - long time no see etc. Same for me and yours. I'll pop in again, but your blog somehow changed when you changed format (maybe just my perception of it).

Re zodiac signs - Yes, do remember! lol. Correct people when they ask you what you are, or tell you what they are - in casual pub conversation of course, I doubt you'd ever initiate such a theme yourself. ;-)

Twilight said...

mike ~ I don't keep notes on this so I frequently forget the detail of people's personal chart elements mentioned here. I recall your Scorpio-ness and you mentioned some Virgo connections, and some loose Aquarius link if I recall. I hadn't yet "got a clear handle" on Gigi's chart.

Seems we three are loosely connected astrologically then. Even more interesting.

I don't like to be forward, asking about these things in detail, because they are personal and many people consider them private for many reasons. (Stolen identity etc whether for "fun" on the net or for more nefarious reasons in the real world?)

James has Aquarius Sun - he's led by logic, it goes with the territory I guess. Logically astrology makes little sense - until one sees it working so often, so well, as a few of us have managed to do. ;-)

smitaly said...

Grateful Virgo here (sun, moon, and Mercury happily cooled by Aquarius rising) simply wanting to take this opportunity to thank you for such thought-provoking, mind-expanding, and occasionally downright silly posts.

I've been following you for the past three or four years, and while I've rather fell out of the habit, I thought I'd check in on my birthday. Reading the post and comments about Virgos, I was reminded of something that was said to me by a friend of the family on my 10th birthday. "So, you're 10 and still a Virgo." I understood the joke (despite my tender age), and it still makes me smile when I think of it 50 years later.


(expat American, living in Roma, Italia)

Twilight said...

smitaly ~ Hi there! Delayed Happy Birthday too!

Thanks for your comment - glad to know you found something of interest and occasional silliness (best part) from time to time.

Rome? What a wonderful place in which to be an ex-pat - of USA or anywhere else. :-)