An Astrological Guide to Health
By Terri L. Saunders
Long ago, our ancestors’ view of the world was shaped by an inherent belief in the cosmic connection between life on earth and the omniscient power of the natural laws of the universe. There was a time when astronomers were also astrologers, and humans were more conscious of the ebbs and flows within their bodies as the sun, moon and planets moved through their cycles. Hippocrates, known today as the father of modern medicine, advised all physicians to develop a working knowledge of astrology to better diagnose and treat their patients’ health conditions. He said, “A physician cannot safely administer medicine if he is unacquainted with astrology.”
When a baby is ready to be born, it secretes a hormone from the medulla portion of the brain which triggers the uterus to go into labor. This fact supports the idea that we choose when to be born. A personal horoscope is a chart or map of the heavens calculated for the exact date, time and place of birth that can be viewed as a blueprint of patterns and potentials in the life of that person. The position of each planet around the wheel of the chart, the sectors (houses) in which they fall, and their mathematical relationship to each other (aspects) describe the kind of physical, mental, emotional and spiritual gifts, lessons and challenges a person might experience in that life. Evolutionary astrology utilizes the horoscope as a window into the soul’s journey through lifetimes of growth, that is, where it has been and where it is going.
Most people know their astrological sun sign which is one of twelve signs in the zodiac. Each sign is associated with an element (fire, air, earth, water) and is ruled by a planet which gives that sign certain characteristics. Each sign also has a particular quality (cardinal, fixed, mutable) which further describes the nature of the individual. Of course, we are much more than our sun sign, and when we know the exact birth time, then the ascendant (rising sign) and planetary house placements can be determined which reveal an extremely accurate picture of the individual.
Medical astrology, also known as biocosmic astrology, uses the horoscope to identify inherent strengths and weaknesses in the mind/body complex. It can also predict when health crises are likely to occur based on the transits or location of the planets on a given day as they aspect planets in the birth chart. Astrology can pinpoint times in the person’s life when planetary aspects and the lessons they highlight may cause vulnerability in one’s health and the part of the body that may be affected.
There are planetary cycles throughout one’s life that offer opportunities for growth and have a powerful impact on emotional and physical well being. Of particular significance are the Saturn return cycle at age 29 to 30, and the Uranus opposition at around age 40. Both of these key life passages involve a reevaluation of priorities and can bring resistance to needed change. The more resistance we experience emotionally, the greater the discomfort we will experience on a physical level. Other key cycles of vulnerability are the Chiron return at age 49 to 50 and the Neptune opposition at age 82.
World health trends have also been observed and even predicted with astrology. For example, most global epidemics, from the great plagues of Europe to AIDS in modern times, have occurred during Saturn-Neptune conjunctions. These cycles are historically associated with hard times, but the lessons learned from the challenges they present stimulate spiritual growth.
Perhaps the most observable phenomenon is the effect the phases of the moon have on plant, animal and human life. The Reader’s Digest publication “Into the Unknown” stated that it is a common belief among police officers, fire fighters and ambulance drivers that their busiest days and nights occur when the moon is new or full. It is during those times, they said, that “suicides, crimes of passion, arson, and all manner of aberrant behavior seem to crest.”
It is well known that the moon controls the ocean’s tides. Since our bodies are made up of 70% water, the full moon, in a sense, causes a high tide in our bodies and psyche. At this time we can feel emotionally overwhelmed and unable to cope, or positively, exhilarated and energized. On a physical level, the fluids in the body can increase and swell at the full moon, making this an undesirable time to have surgery, due to an increased risk of hemorrhage. Generally, the best time to have surgery (and dental work) is during the waning moon, at least three days beyond the full moon. It is also best to avoid surgery when the moon is void of course and when the moon is in a sign that rules the part of the body that is being operated upon.
Astrological cycles can help determine when a woman is most fertile and therefore likely to conceive a child. In past ages, when women were closely attuned with nature and not under the influence of artificial light, their menstrual and conception cycles were aligned with the phases of the moon. Dr. Eugen Jonas, a psychiatrist and gynecologist, is known for his work correlating the human reproductive cycle with the lunar cycle. He concluded that a woman was most fertile each month when the angle between the sun and moon was in exact relationship to the angle between the sun and moon at the time of the woman’s birth. This fertility period holds true regardless of the woman’s ovulatory cycle. In fact, it has been discovered that women who conceived while menstruating, were actually in their fertile moon phase cycle at the time of conception. Dr. Jonas also surmised that a male child was more likely to be conceived when the moon was in the masculine fire and air signs, and a female child had a better chance of being conceived when the moon was in the feminine water and earth signs.
Astrology can also provide insights into the nature of the individual’s sexuality and erogenous zones of the body. Difficult aspects to Venus, Mars, Saturn and Pluto in the birth chart can indicate lessons or challenges around sexual issues, while positive aspects can indicate harmony in this area. In relationships, when the woman’s Venus is positively aspected to the man’s Mars, they are usually very compatible sexually.
Just as the planets impact one’s health, they also influence the effectiveness of various healing modalities. Beneficial therapies, including herbal medicines, flower essences, aromatherapy, cell salts, and bodywork can be selected according to astrological correspondences. Some astrologers recommend that their clients take the cell salt that is associated with their sun sign to support body chemistry at the cellular level.
Below is a brief description of each sun sign as it relates to health. If you know your ascendant (relating to physical structure and appearance), your moon sign (associated with emotions), and the sign which rules your sixth house (the house of health), you can apply the characteristics of those signs to your life as well. Understand that a more detailed, accurate picture can be obtained by examining the entire horoscope or by contacting a qualified astrologer who is trained in this very complex and precise art.
Aries is a cardinal fire sign ruled by Mars. Dynamic, headstrong Aries can sometimes internalize aggression, resulting in frustration, anger and depression. Aries rules the head, cerebrum, and motor centers of the brain and is associated with the blood and muscle. Aries have exceptional recuperative powers, but their intense drive can lead to over-commitment, tension headaches and high blood pressure. Impatience can lead to accidents, while eating in a hurry may cause digestive disturbances. Physical activity provides the stimulation Aries needs, yet this must be balanced with stillness and relaxation to avoid burnout. The nerve endings in the face and scalp are erogenous zones for Aries. Aries’ cell salt is Potassium Phosphate.
Taurus is a fixed earth sign ruled by Venus. Taureans are usually strong and blessed with stamina but can take longer to recover from illness. Their senses of taste, touch, smell and appreciation of beauty are highly developed, therefore they feel best when their earthy comforts (e.g. good food and sex) are provided for. Overeating can cause the system to become sluggish. Taurus rules the throat, tonsils, neck, jugulars and thyroid where inflammation can develop when they are run down. They can be blessed with a powerful speaking or singing voice. Gentle stroking of the neck and throat will arouse this sign’s passion. Taurus’ cell salt is Sodium Sulfate.
Gemini is a mutable air sign, ruled by Mercury. Gemini is forever in motion, constantly seeking intellectual stimulation and escape from boredom. Gemini rules the hands, arms, shoulders, lungs, diaphragm, and nervous system. Unexpressed mental activity can create worry and anxiety. Many Geminians turn to nail biting and smoking to deal with excess nervous tension, but must be careful due to the vulnerability of the lungs. Geminis will find peace through ordered thinking, relaxed breathing and meditation. Gemini’s sensitive arms and hands are very receptive to erotic stimuli. Gemini’s cell salt is Potassium Chloride.
Cancer is a cardinal water sign ruled by the Moon and is highly affected by the phases of the moon. Retentive, nurturing cancer’s crusty exterior belies the extremely sensitive, psychic and sentimental nature of this sign. Cancer governs the stomach, breasts, and membrane coverings of the brain and lungs. When upset, cancers can suffer from nervous stomach, indigestion and even ulcers. Nourishing meals in peaceful surroundings are essential. Erratic moods can be soothed by being in or near the water, especially the ocean. Swimming, sailing and scented baths are particularly therapeutic. Cancers recuperate best in their own homes. The breasts in both sexes are Cancer’s erogenous zone. Cancer’s cell salt is Calcium Fluoride.
Leo is a fixed fire sign, ruled by the Sun. Dignified, proud, creative and warm, Leos need to feel loved and appreciated to stay in prime health. They also make excellent dancers and athletes. Leo rules the heart, spine and back, so when emotionally stressed, back strain, fevers and heart stress can occur. In general, their fiery spirit and sense of fun keeps them relatively healthy. Any creative outlet such as art, music, games, or acting is therapeutic for Leos. Massage and back-strengthening exercises are also beneficial. Caressing the spine and back is sexually arousing to Leos. Leo’s cell salt is Magnesium Phosphate.
Virgo is a mutable earth sign ruled by Mercury. Virgo’s analytical power, diligent work ethic and quest for purity and perfection can lead to illness from overwork, worry and self-criticism. Virgo governs the intestinal tract, duodenum, spleen and is co-ruler of the liver. Virgos usually at some point in their life choose to follow a very healthy diet which is to their benefit since Virgos can be susceptible to colitis, diarrhea, and constipation. Their natural interest in health find many Virgos in the health professions. Virgos must take the time to exercise and relax to stay healthy. A walk in the woods is especially balancing for this sign. The stomach and abdomen are Virgo’s erogenous zones. Virgo’s cell salt is Potassium Sulfate.
Libra is a cardinal air sign, ruled by Venus. Librans thrive physically, mentally, emotionally and spiritually in a happy, harmonious relationship with others and in an aesthetically pleasing environment. They are often uncomfortable with confrontation and can suppress their feelings, causing them to become physically ill. Libra rules the kidneys, adrenal glands and acid-alkaline balance in the body. Librans need to learn to express their negative emotions or kidney stones, cystitis, and kidney infections can result. The lower back is also a vulnerable area. Librans must be careful to limit the intake of acid-forming foods (sugar, salt, white flour, meat and dairy). Drinking abundant pure water with fresh lemon can also help. The lower back and buttocks are erogenous zones for Libra. Libra’s cell salt is Sodium Phosphate.
Scorpio is a fixed water sign, ruled by Pluto. Scorpio is determined, passionate, intuitive and emotionally intense. A sign of many symbols, Scorpio can fall to the depths of the Scorpion, rise like the Eagle, and transform like the Phoenix from the ashes. Pluto’s influence gives this sign regenerative healing power. Scorpio rules the reproductive system, the colon, prostate, bladder and immune system. Scorpios have a tendency to hold onto emotions and need to learn to let go, or a build up of toxins will develop causing problems with elimination and immunity. A healthy diet is essential for physical and emotional balance. Scorpios must be careful not to turn to alcohol and drugs when emotionally overwhelmed. Natural cleansing remedies are beneficial. The genitals are an exceptionally sensitive erogenous zone for Scorpios. Scorpio’s cell salt is Calcium Sulfate.
Sagittarius is a mutable fire sign, ruled by Jupiter. Sagittarians are filled with high energy, enthusiasm, ambition, faith, optimism and an unquenchable desire for knowledge. A love of travel and sports and a need for freedom keep this sign on the move. Sagittarius governs the hips, thighs, sciatic nerve and liver, which can be vulnerable when under stress or when confronted by limitation. Their active lifestyle can also lead to sports injuries. Gout and hepatitis can develop from overindulging in rich foods and alcohol. Weight gain tends to occur around the hips and thighs. Sagittarians often live long lives. There are more octogenarians born under this sign than any other. Sexually, the hips and thighs are especially sensitive to touch. The Sagittarian cell salt is Silicon Dioxide.
Capricorn is a cardinal earth sign, ruled by Saturn. Reserved, practical, hard-working and serious, Capricorns exhibit steadfastness and stubbornness and appear to become younger as they get older. Capricorn rules the knees, bones, teeth, skin, hair, nails, and gall bladder. Often, rigid beliefs and resistance to change can make Capricorns prone to chills, stiffness and calcification of the joints, teeth problems and gall stones. Saturn’s influence on this sign can make Capricorns susceptible to moodiness and depression. Engaging in joyful activities, increased mental flexibility, mineral supplementation, massage, and movement to stimulate circulation are beneficial. Walking or hiking in the countryside nurtures Capricorn’s connection to the earth. The erotic area for Capricorn is the front and back of the knees. Capricorn’s cell salt is Calcium Phosphate.
Aquarius is a fixed air sign, ruled by Uranus. Inventive, nonconformist, brilliant, humanitarian, futuristic and freedom-loving describe this sign which rules the shins, calves, ankles, blood circulation and electrical system of the body. Progressive and forward thinking, the high mental vibration of Aquarius requires maximum oxygenation for peak brain performance. Exercise to improve circulation can help to prevent leg cramps and varicose veins. Aquarians’ hectic lifestyle often leads to snacks on the go rather than balanced meals. Improper diet and a lack of exercise and quiet time can contribute to hardening of the arteries, anemia and low blood pressure. Aquarians can have a difficult time in cold weather and should dress warmly to avoid frostbite. Stimulants such as coffee should also be avoided. Erogenous zones for Aquarians are the calves and ankles. The Aquarian cell salt is Sodium Chloride.
Pisces is a mutable water sign, ruled by Neptune. Dreamy, sensitive, psychic, and spiritual, Pisceans are the chameleons of the zodiac, often taking on the burdens of others. Pisces can be great artists, musicians and healers, being sensitive to impulses from higher realms and the needs of others. Pisces rules the feet and the lymph system, and can experience foot problems and weak immunity when stressed. Pisces are acutely sensitive to alcohol and drugs of all kinds, and can easily become addicted to these substances as a way of escaping from what they perceive to be the harsh reality of life. Pisces respond well to foot reflexology, aromatic baths, and are especially soothed by a trip to the ocean. The feet are Pisces’ erogenous zone. Pisces cell salt is Iron Phosphate.
The above is just a fraction of what can be learned from biocosmic astrology. Some helpful books on the subject are Jeanne Avery’s “Astrology and Your Health, and “The Health Zodiac” by Pamela Rowe. Personally, I have found this knowledge to be invaluable in supporting my own health as well as my clients.
Terri Saunders is an herbalist, nutritionist, and Certified Natural Health Professional in Charlottesville, Virginia where she does consultations, phone consultations and classes on natural healing. She can be reached at Sunrise Herb Shoppe at 434-984-2665, or e-mail at sunherb@sunherb. com. Check website at www.sunriseherbshop .com for more information.
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