sextile

Sextiles 101

SalOFSolomon_astropattern
Sextiles fall 60 degrees apart. This example chart has 6 sextiles forming the Star of David or Seal of Solomon as it is known in esoteric astrology. You don't see it often, and it requires a Splash chart pattern, and two grand trines, but it is quite a delight for those born July 29/30, 2013, and other years, of course.

Welcome to Sextiles 101. You'll find this the second post and our Aspects 101 Series. Over the course of these posts, we cover major and minor aspects, the angles formed between planets.

Let's get started.

Sextiles 101 - What are they?

First of all, a sextile represents two or more planets 60° apart. If you have the Sun at 2° Libra and Saturn at 2° Leo or 2° Sagittarius, the sun sextiles Saturn. But, that's not all. There is, as with all aspects, a degree of 'orb'.

What is the orb for Sextiles?

Orb of aspect for Conjunctions plus
Orbs for Conjunctions and other aspects, minor and major.

Understand, an orb represents the degrees allowed for the aspect to 'work'. In the case of the sextile, the orb may be tight - 5° either side. Or, it may be wider, 8° either side for the *luminaries.

In the example above above showing the Star of David pattern, all the sextiles fall into a tight orb, within 1-4°s. But if Pluto was 28° Sagittarius, it would still be sextile to Neptune at 2° Pisces because it is within 4° orb.

Take a look at my settings for the aspects in my Io Time Cycles Software program. You can see the orbs are adjustable, and I like them wide, especially if the luminaries are involved.

sextiles
Aspectarian for the sample, Star of David, chart above.

The Key to Understanding any Aspect

Richard Idemon taught that the aspects are like table legs. Pick one 'leg' up and all the other legs of the table will follow. No exceptions. In this example, if you feel something on an emotional level (the moon) you will automatically awaken the sensitivity and nebulousness of Neptune and the call to adventure of Jupiter as both are sextile the moon. You can not do one without the others when they link by aspect, even if that means expressing one quality and pushing the other down into the unconscious. (not the best solution in the long run)

Finding the Sextiles

As you practice looking at a variety of charts, your eye will learn to pick up sextiles easily. Even the out-of-sign ones. If you create charts without the 'lines' drawn in the middle, you will learn to see the aspects faster, without relying on the crutch, which doesn't let you practice seeing the chart. Meanwhile, you can double check with the aspectarian, the graph that comes with the natal chart. It shows us how all the planets and points are connected by aspect via symbol. Here is the aspectarian for the example chart.

What does the Sextile Mean?

Itzchak_Tarkay
Watercolor by Itzchak Tarkay

Now, let's explore the meaning of sextile. This aspect links two or more planets or points that fall between 60°s plus or minus 5-8°s either side. The popular keyword for the sextile is “opportunity”. This comes from the positive nature of the aspect that usually links signs that fall in the same polarity,Earth & Water or Fire & Air. Sextiles also require us to be alert. An opportunity may arise between planets in sextile although we have to utilize it in some way. Even though sextiles represent cooperation and empathy, the nature of the planets involved must be considered as well as the individuals unique way of expressing them together.

If Mars is in a sextile aspect to Pluto, it does not automatically imply that one has transformed their primitive assertive drives in such a way that they are strong yet sensitive, powerful but not dominating. It may just as likely indicate that when they feel assertive or takes action (Mars) they also feel the power of the primeval world move through them in an wave of dramatic and life changing energy (Pluto). It is important to acknowledge the role of the sextile to bring planets together for a single purpose or cause. We decide how that combined energy will express.

Forget about Easy or Hard

Straight away, let's drop the value judgments around the aspects. Sextiles make life neither good nor bad, easy or hard. What they do is link them together for potential opportunity.

Furthermore, the aspect's expression isn't set in stone. It changes as we evolve. A child with Mars sextile Pluto may find their parents strict, controlling, scary at times. As they mature, they might experience the Pluto drive for power and control as bullying at school or, conversely, a charismatic blessing. Eventually, they can become both the Sun and Pluto, taking responsibility for their own power and drives, using the strength to bring fulfillment to themselves and others.

The Questions to Ask of the Sextile - An Example Chart

Conjunctions_ExampleThis is a chart of a woman with multiple conjunctions in the same sign (Libra) and mixed signs (Virgo and Libra) in the same house. This stellium sextiles the planets and points 60°s away, ie. Uranus, Mars, MC and Neptune.

Did you get them all? Check the aspectarian above to be sure, but in the 7th house alone, Moon is conjunct Mercury (out of sign). Also, Venus, Venus, Sun, Saturn and Pluto are conjunct within 10 degrees. In this way, every planet in her chart, except for Jupiter is either conjunct or sextile. (Plus the 30° semi-sextile between the Moon and Sun, Saturn, Pluto. We'll look at this aspect when we go through the minors.)

If we take just Sun sextile Neptune, we can ask, do they have compatible desires?  What happens when these table legs come up? The sun wants to shine, to be seen as distinct, lighting things up via the sign and house it is in. In this case, aka Libra, it's through charm, balance, fairness and grace, especially in the realm of personal one to one relationships (7th house).

But, Neptune is not interested in the immediate dries of the ego, or earthly accolades and accomplishment. Neptune is that part of us that seeks the Source, that wants to reconnect with the oneness of all life, to serve those less fortunate, to experience compassion, longing and divine love.

There is opportunity in combining these energies, and indeed, this person works as a couples counselor, helping people realize their relationship desires. But it took many year to find the expression. At first, it was either relationship (sun in 7th) or selfless giving to the masses (Neptune in 10th).

Working with Contrast

The first thing to do when faced with contrasting drives and goals is to give yourself credit. You are aware of it.

Second, instead of honoring one of the planets and resisting or repressing the other - instead of making it either/or - you engage with and/AND. Instead of creativity (Sun) or spirituality (Neptune), find creativity AND spirituality. If you are thinking partnered or serving others, play with the idea of partnered AND serving others.

The bottom line is, if you think it’s either/or, it will be, so use your awareness to pave new thoughts with and/AND. Freedom AND commitment. Money AND soul. Dream Job AND independence. Security AND love. Accomplishment AND spiritual life. Power AND creativity.

Summary

To conclude, a sextile between two or more planets means they are scripted to dialog with each other. They are connected so that if one is active and ‘doing something’ the connected planet wakes up too. They are partners, of sorts, always. Finding the And/and to the sextiles in your chart can harmonize your desires, smooth out any kinks in your vibe and launch new successes, over and over again.

Try it!

Also, if you missed our first call in the Doorways to Manifesting Series, you can listen to it here:

Doorways to Manifesting - leveraging the contrast in your chart.

Comments on the Fourm and example charts in the Chart Gallery.

* * *

Notes

* Luminary refers to the sun and/or moon.

* Basic Rules:
Planets
are energy – the actors. They show us WHAT is acting.
Signs are expression – the costumes the actors wear. They show HOW the actors move.
Houses are environments – the stage on which the actor struts her stuff. They show WHERE the action is.
Aspects are the scripts – the dialog between actors who are connected. They show WHY the actors are attracted to each other.

*What Activates Aspects in the Natal Chart

Three things will activate any aspects in the chart: time, place and people. Think of it like this:

Time - Transits to the conjunctions

Place - Relocation or Astre*Carto*Graphy

People - Synastry, as when another person's planet acts like a transit to yours.

The Major Aspects Symbols and Key Words

Aspects_sm

 

 

 

 

 

Find out more about Aspect Patterns - a pattern that ties together three or more planets into a geometrical shape. They are CONNECTED to each other. Scripted to interact.

Comments welcome, or join us on the GVA forum.


What the YOD?

YOD Example
Here the YOD is Moon (150 degree inconjunct) Saturn (60 degree sextile) Mars (150 degree incojunct) Moon.

The YOD aka Finger of God aka Finger of Fate

First know the YOD aspect pattern consists of two planets sextile each other and inconjunct (150 degrees) to a third planet sitting on the inverse midpoint. If you connect the dots, you come up with a lovely isosceles triangle. AKA YOD or Finger of Fate/God.

the yod aspect

Check the examples to the left. The RED lines represent the inconjunct / quincunx (150 degree apart) and the green lines represents the sextile (60 degree apart). You can check your natal chart right now. If you have two (or more in some cases) planets 60 degrees apart AND 150 degrees to a singular third planet, bingo, you have a YOD.

The feature image above shows off the transiting YOD in late November 2018, perfected when the Moon reaches 7 degrees of Leo.

Remember, there are a lot of other chart patterns every bit as exciting as the Yod. For example the grand trine, which is three planets in the trine aspect of 120 degrees, (green lines) or squares and oppositions (red line).

How to read the YOD

So, what does the YOD mean? Here we can review the basic tenants of astrology to unravel it:

  • Planets are the actors
  • Signs are the costumes they wear
  • Houses are the stage or sets they act on
  • Aspects are the scripts/dialog the actors have with each other.

No matter what aspect, a dialog forms between the planets involved. The planets connect, like table legs (as Richard Idemon would say). Pick one up and anything in aspect comes up with it. In other words if you have Moon sextile Mars and get emotional, Mars energy will be there instantly. You may want to stand your ground or fight or take charge. The reverse is true too. If you take charge or get in a fight you might feel very deeply. Battle might be nurturing to you!  With the YOD, you'll find three planets connected, scripted to interact. Interestingly, they will all be a different element and a different modality. It's often not a comfortable match, to start with.

YOD Examples

Let's imagine Mercury sextiles Mars and they are both inconjunct Neptune. If you activate Mercury by communicating, you automatically wake up the other two planets. The energy of Mercury sweeps along to Mars (action) and shoots toward Neptune to express. Ideally, the apex planet channels the energy of the other two.

How might this work out in real life? Let's say you're on a date and Mercury is talking, connecting and asking questions, having a great time. But doing so wakes up assertive go-getter Mars  who wants 'a little less conversation; a little more action'. Mars gets bored and pushes in. At this point the dialog might turn to adventure, MMA, sports or stories about all the amazing things you've done. While that's going on, mystical Neptune stirs. Now things get dreamy, the wine flows and all the talk is about meditation, art, film or higher guidance. This can lead to a tug-o-war over who gets to express. It's a big job for the apex planet to orchestrate it all. A first date might have trouble handling it all.

Summary

To sum it up, the Yod means three, or more, of your planets are in dialog with each other and it's up to the apex planet to harmonize and express the energy. It's called the finger of fate or God because without awareness, and experience, it can be a source or contrast and challenge. Wherever it sits in the chart, (what houses or areas of life are activated) describes where a pattern of behavior or external events occur.

But 'fate' doesn't control you. Your thoughts do. Through awareness, you can learn to turn your YOD to gold.

Members, if you want to chat about your YOD on the forum, I've just made a new thread there.

I'd love to hear how you handle your natal and transiting YODS.