If you follow 'astrology' you will likely be familiar with the phrase the sun is currently in libra, or the full moon is in sagittarius.... Now, if you are the owner of a skyviewing app and you've looked at the sky and noticed, in fact the sun is in Virgo (not Libra) or the moon is in fact in Scorpio (not Sagittarius) you might be a bit confused!
What you're experiencing is the rarely explained difference between Tropical Astrology and Sidereal Astrology.
To attempt to explain it very simply - Sidereal Astrology is the system of reading the sun, moon, planets and astral bodies as they are exactly positioned in the sky and the zodiac, whereas Tropical Astrology aligns the zodiac with the seasons of the earth and is the system of setting the first sign of the zodiac (Aries) with the first day of spring each year. Sidereal Astrology looks at the real time sky and Tropical Astrology looks to the seasons of the earth with the matrix of the zodiac imprinted over the seasons.
Approximately 2000 years ago the two systems actually aligned, however due to the procession of the equinoxes and the subtle shift of the earth as it rotates the sun, the exact (Sidereal) view of the sky has shifted almost an entire zodiac sign from where Tropical Astrology positions the seasons within the zodiac. The Sidereal view of the sky against the zodiac shifts about 1 degree every 72 years. Which goes to explain why, when a tropical astrologer says the moon is in a particular sign, and you look to the sky and see that it's not in fact in that sign, but the sign before it.
Both systems of Astrology originated in the Northern Hemisphere and when you look closely and start to really understand Tropical Astrology you'll learn that the essence of each zodiac sign is influenced by the northern hemisphere seasonal traits. This works very well in the northern hemisphere, however (in our opinion) is problematic for a Southern Hemisphere reading in the Tropical Astrology system. For example - Aries is the beginning of the zodiac, is set on the first day of spring, marking April the beginning of the astrological new year. The qualities of Aries is youthful, ambitious, courageous, passionate, motivated... all very 'spring-like' qualities. Great energy to start the year with. However, spring in the Southern Hemisphere isn't in April with Aries, it lands in September where the zodiac is in Libra.
In the Tropical Astrology system the qualities of Libra are balance, harmony, peace, and justice and align with the season of Autumn. It is the sign that is half way through the zodiac... where we have travelled one side, and now face the other. However, our Autumn in the Southern Hemisphere falls in April... can you see where we're going with this?
It's important to note we are not astrologers, however we do follow astrology, work with astrologers and have a deep respect and reverence for living within local and cosmic cycles of nature.
What to do with all of this...
If you follow any astrologers, you like to read your daily or monthly horoscope or you have had your a birth chart prepared you will want to know if the astrology system is the Tropical System (where the essence of the zodiac is aligned with the seasons of the earth) or the Sidereal System (where the sun, moon and planets are aligned with the zodiac in the sky).
It's possible that your whole sense of person and self is quite anchored to your first ever horoscope or birth chart reading and to be told that your star sign is now possibly different might be a little mind bending. We totally get it.
This is a conversation that we plan to keep having over time as well as develop your and our understanding and interpretation of the different systems of astrology and how you can continue to work with the stars, planets and the seasons of the earth to understand yourself, your karmic bonds and your souls journey.
We hope you enjoy our first public disucssion and please send us your questions or comments and we will answer them in our next podcast episode.
Leila & Sam xx