©2-26-2011 by Donna Cunningham, MSW
“How Come There’s No Test for the Earth Signs?”
I get that a lot. Over the course of last year, I created a series of tests to measure the strength of various parts of the astrology chart. They’ve been wildly popular, several ranking in the top 10 posts of all times on Skywriter. There are tests for each of the planets, for the cardinal, fixed, and mutable modes, and for fire, air, and water. But, until today, there was none for earth.
I got stuck on earth. That’s because I and any number of other astrologers aren’t comfortable with the rulerships of two out of the three earth signs. Neither Taurus or Virgo have their own planetary rulers but instead share them with signs that aren’t really like them at all.
Traditionally, Taurus and Libra are supposedly both ruled by Venus. Likewise, Gemini and Virgo are assigned to Mercury. These rulerships date back to a neatly symmetrical system developed ages ago when there were only 7 known planets, the ones visible in the night sky. As new planets were discovered, all the signs except these two were given their own rulers.
No one seems to question Mercury as the ruler of Gemini, but there is substantial doubt that it rules Virgo, and a range of alternatives has been suggested. Libra seems to fit Venus comfortably, but maybe not its quincunx sign, Taurus. Here on Skywriter, as astrologers have for years, we’ve had a debate about the rulers of these two signs.
We first debated the ruler of Taurus:
- AstroDebate—Which Sign does Venus Really Rule?
- Mother Earth in your Chart—What on Earth Would It Mean
And, more recently, we vigorously debated the ruler of Virgo:
I can’t say we came to a consensus on either sign, and as a result, the test below has a variety of options.
The Tentative Test for Earth Types—What’s your Score?
____ Sun, Moon, Ascendant, or Midheaven in Taurus, Virgo, or Capricorn. 5 points each.
____ Other planets (including Chiron) in Taurus, Virgo, or Capricorn. 3 points each.
____ Sun or Moon in the earth houses (2nd, 6th, or 10th house) or conjunct the Midheaven. 5 points each.
____ Other planets (including Chiron) in the earth houses (2nd, 6th, or 10th). 3 points each.
____BONUS: 10% of your Saturn Score, rounded off . For example, 10% of a score of 35 would give you 3.5, rounded off to 4 points, but a score of 34 would be 3.4, rounded off to 3. See How Strong is your Saturn? Here’s the Score! ( If you can’t recall your exact score, ballpark it–or check to see if you posted it in the comment sections for those tests.)
____ BONUS: Saturn within 10° of a conjunction to the Sun, Moon, Ascendant, or Midheaven, 15 points each. (This is the single strongest factor in making you an earth type, but other aspects to these points are included in the planetary scores)
_____The Earth score we can be sure of: Total all the chart features above that apply.
Uncertain additions: Here’s where you would get bonus points for the rulers of Taurus and Virgo, but given the uncertainty about these two signs, let’s leave those bonuses out, which means that the scores for earth will not be strictly comparable to the scores for fire, air, and water. Such are the uncertain times we live in!
Instead, you can choose to add 10% of the scores for fixed signs, since fixity is similar to the steadfastness of the earth signs: How Fixed are You? Here’s the Score!
Or else, IF you’re absolutely certain of the rulers of Taurus and Virgo (and what a comfort that must be!) then add 10% of the scores for your choice of the rulers of those signs:
- How Strong is your Mercury? Here’s the Score!
- Or, from Joyce Mason: Chiron Quiz: How Strong is Your Chiron?
- How Strong is Your Venus? Here’s the Score!
Strong vs. Weak Scores: Since this is a brand new measurement, I don’t know yet exactly how many points would make your score strong or weak.
20 would probably be considered weak, 20-35 would be moderate, and anything above 35 would be considered strong.
Possible qualities of those with a high earth scores: grounded, practical, down to earth, realistic, keen senses, planners, sensual, sensible, reliable, productive, cautious, thrifty, somewhat conservative, attuned to nature and the seasons, traditional, and even a bit old-fashioned.
Possible qualities of those with low earth scores: fairly spacey and ungrounded, little concern with material goods, given to fancies, more inclined to drift and dream than to stay with a plan over the long haul.
The tests in this series aren’t a perfect scientific measurement—that’s impossible. They’re just meant as a simple and fun way to find out the strongest influences in your birth chart.
And, yes, no doubt there are a myriad of other factors that could add to your earthy nature. I’m opting to keep this to a few crucial factors in order to simplify the math and standardize the scores.
For the purpose of standard reporting in the comment section: Don’t use the Part of Fortune, the Vertex, Antivertex, Part of Fortune, Sedna, Eris, or the bazillion asteroids other than Chiron.
For your own purposes, use anything you doggoned well please. If you’re a master gardener, give yourself bonus points. If you recycle religiously, give yourself points.
How did you do? Since this is a completely new test and given the uncertainty about the rulers of earth signs, your input is valuable. Let us know your score—and how you got it—in the comment section down below this article.
Here are the tests for the other elements:
- Are You a Water Type? Here’s the Score!
- Are You a Fire Type? Here’s the Score!
- Are You an Air Type? Here’s the Score!
And here, on one page, are links to all of Skywriter’s popular series of Planetary Tests.
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