Understanding the Four Elements

As recently as a few hundred years ago, Western scientists considered the whole earth to be made of 4 elements: Earth, Air, Fire, and Water. Even though science has taken a different turn, we can still use this ancient wisdom to make sense of the world.

Fire signs

Fire signs:  Aries, Leo, Sagittarius

As you can see, every fourth sign is a fire sign. If you were to connect them, they would form a perfect triangle, also known in astrological terms as a grand trine. In fact, this works for each of the four elements.

The fire signs are Aries , Leo , Sagittarius
Fire symbolizes passion, energy, impulse, enthusiasm, inspiration, idealism, faith. Fire signs are the leaders and the cheerleaders of the zodiac. They provide us with much needed inspiration, motivation and creative energy.

Fire illustration

A person with 2-4 planets in fire in her chart will be enthusiastic and idealistic, and could also be insecure, egocentric and impractical.
5 or more planets in fire appears deceptively quiet and shy until she feels safe enough to open up.
0-1 planets in fire indicates a person with a lower energy level who seeks out others to inspire or motivate her.

Earth signs

Wheel with earth signs:  Taurus, Virgo, Capricorn

Earth signs are Taurus, Virgo, Capricorn.
Earth represents practicality, stability, materialism, realism.
Practical and dependable, earth signs provide the resources necessary for the functions of life. There is usually a deep affinity with nature. Earth signs are the builders of long-lasting structures.


Someone with 2-4 planets in earth signs is resourceful and possesses talent in dealing with reality and material things, such as money, business, or crafts.
A person with 5 or more planets in earth signs can get so stuck in the material aspects of things that they do not see the deeper meanings.
A person with 0-1 planets in earth signs usually does not have to worry over finances. Bill Gates, for example. Although they do tend to be impractical and out of touch with their bodies.

Air signs

Wheel with air signs:  Gemini, Libra, Aquarius

The air signs are Gemini, Libra, Aquarius
Air symbolizes mental processes, language, intellect, reason, human communication and social relationships. Air signs provide the ideas that make things happen.


An airy chart represents a very intelligent person with many ideas to share. He may lack grounding, however, and tries to do too many things at once.

5 or more planets in air in a chart often manifests as someone who feels disconnected from what is happening around her. People with 0-1 planets in air usually have no problem with the intellectual side of life and are often highly educated.

Water signs

Wheel with water signs:  Cancer, Scorpio, Pisces

Water signs are Cancer, Scorpio , Pisces
Emotion, psychism, mysticism, intuition.
Water signs are the “feelers,” the nurturers, the caretakers.


A person with 2-4 planets in water is a very sensitive and emotional person. He will have intuitive and even psychic abilities.
A person with 5 or more planets in water signs is so sensitive that she holds back, and may appear detached or aloof.
A chart with 0-1 planets in water does not mean the person has no feelings! In fact, they are quite emotional, although sometimes are out of touch with their feelings.

Each sign corresponds to an element (these are fairly well-known) and a modality (these are not so well known). The 3 modalities are cardinal, fixed, and mutable.

Astrology four elements jewelry rings