What are the four elements in (Western) astrology?:
What are the Elements?:
The four elements -- earth, air, water and fire -- are the very elements (or energies) of life. Since long before written history, there's been an understanding of the elemental balance needed to sustain life. Many indigenous traditions honor the sacred circle, formed by the four elements, and seen in the Zodiacal wheel.
Elements and Astrology:
In your own birth chart, the mix of elements shows you what you're working with in this life. Your cosmic blueprint may be heavy on the fire, but lack earth to ground you. Each element behaves differently, and is one of three qualities -- how these mix in your chart, taking into account the planet and house placement, shines more light on your nature and life lessons.
Who began to group the signs by Elements?:
In recorded history, Ptolemy is credited with making the association between the four elements and the signs of astrology in the 2nd Century AD. Using longstanding theories of the four elements, he assigned three signs to each element. The Greek philosophers found the four elements in all of life, and their Zodiacal wheel of cosmic energies reflected that balance.
What do the signs of a certain Element have in common?:
The signs in a grouping share certain associations:
- Fire signs: the spirit, inspired, energy, instinctual, outgoing, active
- Air signs: the mind, intellectual, ideas, detached, social, conceptual
- Water signs:the emotions, imaginative, nurturing, introverted
- Earth Signs: the body, practical, sensual, grounded