Your Main Planetary Rulers

This unusual section is being offered to assist you in finding your main planetary ruling bodies so you can enter the daily Cosmic Kalendar and watch key transits. The entire feature brings you many insights about the powerful linkage between planets and signs, and the importance of the Rising and Sun signs at birth.

I am writing this special addition to the Daily Astrology Calendar section of our home page to give all readers of the Cosmic Kalendar a unique way of searching for dynamic aspects that affect them individually. 

The concept of planetary rulers of zodiacal signs has been around for centuries – if not several thousand years. Most beginners to our field realize early on in their studies that each sign of the zodiac is ruled by or affiliated with a planet. Naturally, the planet will have a nature or energy that correlates well with the qualities of the sign it rules.

For example, it is no secret that the first sign of the zodiac – Aries – is fiery and, since it also begins the spring in the Northern Hemisphere, is considered “cardinal” or highly active, dynamic, and forceful in expression. Its ancient ruler has been and still is the red planet Mars. And Mars has always been known as a planet connected to personal drive and willpower, muscular strength and energy, warfare and militaristic behavior, leadership and individual actions. Therefore, anyone can see the fit between Aries and Mars. All the basic planetary rulerships work in a similar fashion.

In my professional study, research and consulting work in astrology for over 32 years, it’s become clear that there are 4 prominent ruling planets that each person should recognize in the natal chart and watch by transit. These are the planets that rule (A) the Sun-sign and (B) the Rising sign. However, shouldn’t that be 2 ruling planets? Yes, if you don’t take into consideration the tenets of Esoteric Astrology advanced by Alice A. Bailey and her spiritual teacher the Tibetan Master D.K. When you add Esoteric Astrology into the mix, you find that your Sun-sign has a “soul or esoteric ruling planet” and your Rising sign also has an esoteric ruler. Thus, in most people’s charts*, there will be 4 ruling planets. *Exceptions will occur if a person has Leo, Scorpio or Capricorn as a Sun-sign and/or Rising sign. In some cases, a person may have 3 key ruling planets or even 2. This will make those rulers even more significant.

Now, let me be very clear. When you examine the entire horoscope – all 12 houses and the complete celestial portrait at birth – there will be many ruling planets as there is a zodiacal sign on every house. I am emphasizing the Sun-sign and Rising sign rulers in this article because (A) the Sun-sign represents your heart center, life force, and overall character in this lifetime and (B) the Rising sign stands for the more subtle, unique soul purpose and higher destiny. Why should we consider the Rising sign as MORE IMPORTANT than the Sun-sign? There is a good reason.

Your Sun-sign is something you share with EVERYONE born within a 30-day time-period during your year of birth. And that means a factor that unites you with tens of millions of people. Your Rising sign – on the day of your birth – will only cross the Eastern horizon for approximately 1+ to 3 hours. [Some zodiacal signs – like Aquarius and Pisces – only take 1+ hours to completely rise in the Northern Hemisphere. These are called signs of “short ascension.” Meanwhile, zodiacal signs – like Virgo and Libra – may take around 3 hours to completely rise in the Northern Hemisphere. These are called signs of “long ascension.” The signs of short and long ascension are reversed in the Southern Hemisphere.]

What the above means is that the Rising sign is much more individual and specific than the Sun-sign. And if you accept the idea that we are souls or spirits capable of choosing our parents and birth moments – in some kind of cosmic and mysterious fashion, aided by our guardian angels and invisible higher powers – then the astrological chart, and even the precise rising degree of the zodiac, are not accidents, but deliberately selected for reasons pertaining to karma, dharma, fate and destiny.

To help you get a deeper sense of what I am presenting, notice the two charts with this feature. The first is for President George W. Bush. The second is for Ralph Nader. The current president and the chief consumer advocate of the past 40 years or so have accurate birth times. Thus, their rising signs and degree placements are known. 

President George W. Bush is born with a Cancer Sun-sign and Leo Rising. This means that his Sun-sign ruler is the Moon while his Rising sign ruler is the Sun. How should we interpret this? The most basic interpretation to me is that the president has many mood swings and personality ups and downs – quite frequently, and certainly daily, weekly and monthly – because the Moon rules his Sun-sign. Since the Moon is the fastest moving celestial body and zips around the entire zodiac in 27.3 days, the president is NOT usually focused on large-scale realities, the BIG picture, and future potentials. His normal mode of being is to care about his family members (Cancer and the Moon), people closely working with him who feel like family, and everyone he trusts within his inner circle. And his focus is today, tomorrow and maybe next week or the next couple of weeks – NOT what is going to happen two years or five years from today. However, because his Rising sign is Leo and that sign is ruled by the Sun, he also has the capacity to focus on the entire year – since that is how long the Sun takes to go through all 12 signs of the zodiac. Therefore, it is an enormous help to the president to have selected Leo rising as it allows him to have the ability to see things over the course of the next year rather than what is happening just now (more Moon oriented). Nevertheless, in order for him to sustain this annual or yearly approach to life, he really needs to remain soul-infused and not descend into personality cloudiness or a self-centered attitude. 

Ralph Nader’s birthmap couldn’t be more different than the president’s horoscope in terms of what I am sharing. His Sun-sign is Pisces and this sign has always been ruled by Jupiter. [Note: Since the discovery of Neptune in 1846, many astrologers want to give the PERSONAL rulership of Pisces to Neptune. However, this doesn’t work in the conventional sense because Neptune takes 164+ years to complete one orbit around the zodiac. We can consider Neptune as a co-ruler with Jupiter or adjunct ruler, but it shouldn’t replace Jupiter on a practical level.] Jupiter takes 12 years to make one complete orbit around the zodiac. As a Solar Piscean, Ralph Nader IS focused on the BIG picture, the larger perspective, an idealistic pursuit in life since the largest planet in the solar system is in charge of his Sun-sign. His focus is NOT on today, mood swings and personal family-type issues, but rather on everything that relates to the nation, the world, and what the future holds in store many years from now. With the very beginning of Aquarius rising, the more unique, subtle and spiritual potential for Ralph Nader is tied up with Uranus – the planet that rules Aquarius. Now Uranus has an even longer cycle around the zodiac than Jupiter. It takes almost 84 years for Uranus to make its passage through all 12 signs. Since the Rising sign is connected to our soul path or higher destiny, Ralph Nader is not a person who is going to focus on a month (Moon) or on a year (Sun) of time, but on the unfolding sequence of events taking decades and nearly a century (Uranus) before they reach a fulfillment or conclusion. 

From the above paragraphs, you have a simple formula. President George W. Bush is primarily ruled by the Moon and Sun. Ralph Nader is primarily ruled by Jupiter and Uranus. And you can very clearly understand this relative to their lives, behavior patterns and perspectives. However, by bringing in the concepts from Esoteric Astrology, there will be additional ruling planets to add to their lists. Here is the key guide for you to follow as you research this topic:

Sign Exoteric Ruler Esoteric Ruler
Aries Mars Mercury
Taurus Venus Vulcan*
Gemini Mercury Venus
Cancer Moon Neptune
Leo Sun Sun**
Virgo Mercury Moon
Libra Venus Uranus
Scorpio Mars Mars**
Sagittarius Jupiter Earth*
Capricorn Saturn Saturn
Aquarius Uranus Jupiter
Pisces Jupiter Pluto

*Vulcan is an intra-Mercurial planet that may be existing on etheric levels rather than physical levels of reality. It is always very close to the Sun in a birthchart. On a few occasions, Vulcan has been apparently sighted and I have one science book from the 1800s that discusses it as a real planet. *The Earth is always exactly opposite the Sun in your birthmap. And wherever the Sun is located in the daily Cosmic Kalendar, the transiting Earth will be precisely in the opposite degree of the zodiac. **The signs Leo, Scorpio and Capricorn have the same rulers – Sun, Mars and Saturn – on exoteric (regular) and esoteric (soul) levels of consciousness and being. Like Neptune NOT really ruling Pisces in the regular way of looking at astrology, Pluto DOESN’T rule Scorpio on a day-to-day level. Pluto might be considered a co-ruler or adjunct ruler – with Mars – for Scorpio, but it does not rule the sign in a practical manner. This is because Mars will go through the entire zodiac and make every aspect possible to natal planets in two years while Pluto will barely move 2, 3 or 4 degrees of the zodiac in two years.

In the chart examples presented, we now can add Neptune as the esoteric ruler of the president’s Sun-sign. This third main ruling planet for President George W. Bush opens him up to religious interests, a strong imagination, a potential to think universally and globally, as long as he avoids mental and emotional confusion, deceptions and illusions (the shadow side of Neptune). We also remember his heavy drinking days (negative Neptune) that were extremely altered by him becoming a born-again Christian (a different or higher level of Neptune). 

We can add one more ruler for Ralph Nader – Pluto the esoteric ruler of his Sun-sign Pisces. Since Pluto is connected to will, purpose and power (and governmental inclinations according to Esoteric Astrology and the first ray linked to this distant planet), his two runs for president on third-party tickets may now make more sense. However, we know Pluto has a distinct shadow side – relating to abuse of power, isolation, extreme actions – and Ralph Nader has lost many friends and supporters in recent years as he is seen as a spoiler for democratic causes and candidates seeking the highest office in America. [Note: Since the president has Leo rising, the esoteric ruler of this sign is still the Sun. Since Ralph Nader has Aquarius rising, the esoteric ruler of this sign (Jupiter) is the same as the exoteric ruler of his Sun-sign. Both men have 3 key ruling planets and if they were working with the Cosmic Kalendar, they would be advised to pay particular attention to the movements and aspects of those celestial bodies.]

This feature has been offered to assist you in entering the Cosmic Kalendar and becoming more alert to shifts, changes and alignments going on with the main ruling planets at your own birth. If you would like a specially designed interpretation of your birthchart in accordance with many of the ideas in this story, visit my Astrological Consultation section in the EAN Store area on our home page to order a consultation. There is much more to planetary rulerships, but now you have a deeper grasp of how this actually works and functions as an ongoing astrological reality on your spiritual journey in this lifetime.

P.S. For additional insights on this theme, please read the 7 Rays feature in our Daily Astrology Calendar section. There are also special factors in each chart. For instance, the president is born with a Mercury-Pluto union almost exactly rising. Therefore, these two planets function almost as ruling planets because they happen to be so close to his rising degree. For Ralph Nader, his Sun at 8 Pisces is right on America’s natal Ceres (Earth Mother, Mother Nature, the land, ecology and the environment, consumer issues). Therefore, he has a unique tie to Ceres and its movement through the zodiac.

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Mark Lerner Astrology Cosmic Kalendar

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