The Astrology Podcast
Transcript of Episode 363, titled:
Leo in Astrology: Meaning and Traits
With Chris Brennan, Jo O’Neill, and Nick Dagan Best
Episode originally released on August 6, 2022
Note: This is a transcript of a spoken word podcast. If possible, we encourage you to listen to the audio or video version, since they include inflections that may not translate well when written out. Our transcripts are created by human transcribers, and the text may contain errors and differences from the spoken audio. If you find any errors then please send them to us by email: email@example.com
Transcribed by Mary Sharon
Transcription released September 15, 2022
Copyright © 2022 TheAstrologyPodcast.com
CHRIS BRENNAN: Hey, my name is Chris Brennan, and you’re listening to The Astrology Podcast. In this episode, we’re going to be doing a deep dive into the meaning of the zodiac sign Leo and everything basically associated with that sign. So joining me today are astrologers Jo O’Neill and Nick Dagan Best. Welcome both of you.
JO O’NEILL: Thanks for having me, Chris.
NICK DAGAN BEST: Thank you.
CB: Yeah. And we are recording this, for those that like the data, for the Virgos in the room, on Wednesday, August 3rd, 2022, starting at 12:06 PM in Denver, Colorado. Not sure what episode this is, somewhere in the 300s, mid-300s, I would say. All right, so joining me today are two Leos. What are your credentials? First, Jo, what are your Leo credentials?
JO: My Leo credentials, so I have a Leo Sun and Leo rising as well and Jupiter in Leo.
CB: Okay. Yeah, that’s pretty good. I mean, that’s not the biggest stellium in the world, but that’s pretty good compared to things.
NDB: You call that Leo?
JO: [laughs] I knew that was coming. [Nick laughs]
CB: Right. Yeah, there are Leos in the room.
NDB: It’s not going to be a Leo episode if we’re not constantly one-upping each other. So we might as well just get into the spirit of the thing.
JO: All right, what have you got, Nick?
CB: Hold on. I meant to ask ahead of time, are you both comfortable sharing your charts or you prefer not to share the entire chart? It’s fine either way.
NDB: I’m comfortable sharing Jo’s chart.
JO: I’m also comfortable sharing Jo’s chart. It’s been shared here before.
CB: Okay. Here is Jo’s chart really quickly for those watching the video version. So 11 Leo rising, Sun at 15 Leo, Jupiter at 22. Interesting discussion question that came up lately, and whatever your answer is, I’m fine either way, but you identify more as a day chart or a night chart?
JO: My chart seems to work more like a night chart. I’m sure I could probably do more research as far as ZR goes, but I’ve had like ZR readings where night chart ZR dates seem to work better. I also have a really angular Saturn that kind of by degree my Moon from out of sign, it’s approaching an opposition with Saturn. So maybe I just feel Saturn enough to feel like it’s a night chart.
CB: Right. Well, that would be an interesting case study just because something I’ve been trying to research is this range of twilight. And when a person’s born just before sunrise, at what point does it become a day chart versus a night chart and some of the ambiguity there. All right. So we’ll skip this whole… We’ll take a raincheck on that discussion. Nick, what are your credentials?
NDB: Mars Ascendant, Sun and Mercury in Leo.
CB: All right. I’m going to pull your chart.
NDB: Jupiter, schmoopiter.
JO: I mean, I got to admit that that tops me for Leo-ness for sure.
CB: All right, four-planet stellium versus three-planet stellium, we’ll see during the course of the episode. Interestingly though, both of you have the Sun and Ascendant very similar ranges being born basically just before sunrise, basically with Leo rising and the Sun in Leo. So that’s pretty cool.
CB: All right, so those are your credentials. Let me show my graphic image. This is the graphic that Paula Belluomini and I designed that just shows the signs of the zodiac. Leo is the fifth sign of the zodiac. So this is the fifth sign that we’re going to be talking about in my series doing a deep dive into each of the signs. Let’s start with some stats for the sign of Leo. So for the video viewers, this is the cliff or the symbol for Leo up at the top. Leo is actually the Latin word, it means lion, from the Greek word, it means lion, and so on and so forth, lion being the animal totem that’s associated with this sign of the zodiac. So Leo is a masculine or diurnal sign because it’s an odd sign in the alternation between odd and even signs starting with Aries. It’s a fire or a fiery sign in terms of the four elements of earth, air, fire, and water. And it’s a fixed sign in terms of the modalities or quadruplicites of cardinal fixed and mutable. So it’s actually the second fixed sign in our series following after Taurus. So Leo is the sign that is said to be the domicile of the Sun or the sign that is ruled by the Sun. And it is said to be the detriment of Saturn because it’s the sign opposite to one of Saturn’s rulerships or traditional rulerships of Aquarius. All right, so those are all the basic stats. Are there any other basic things that I’m sort of forgetting?
NDB: Not as far as those basic stats are confirmed. Oh, there’s one you’re forgetting, that Leo’s the greatest sign. You forgot that.
CB: That’s true, I mean, Scorpio’s a little arguable, I want to say, but we could say that for the sake of episode.
NDB: Take a world poll, let’s see how many people think Scorpio’s the greatest sign.
CB: There would be a lot of very adamant Scorpios that would answer to that.
NDB: There are some people who would disagree with Leo, these people are known as the mistaken ones. But there’s virtually no one who would choose Scorpio. That’s just absurd.
CB: All right, my friend. Well, if you want to put a target on your back with the world of Scorpios–
NDB: I just got every scorpion in the world after me, not a bright move. Leos are not known for being bright, just the greatest. That’s all, just the greatest.
CB: Well, I mean, bright is a thing that we’re going to come back to here pretty regularly as a keyword for Leo that’s pretty good through its association with the Sun. But one last actually thing that we could mention with Leo or two things actually, one, it’s a hot sign in terms of the qualities where there’s different qualities associated with each of the elements, and since it’s a fire sign, it’s also said to be a hot sign. It falls right in the middle of the summer in the northern hemisphere. And in terms of body parts, one of the primary body parts it’s associated with internally is the heart, and that’s something that we’ll come back to as well. What do you think, Jo, are there any other basic things that we have to mention right at the start?
JO: I think that really covers most of the basic stuff. The elemental qualities of fire, hotness, and dryness are something I think about a lot when it comes to thinking about fire signs in general, but especially Leo. Because I think a common keyword we associate with Leo is leadership or royalty and elementally or temperamentally, really hotness and dryness, dryness, especially kind of denotes separation or distance. And there’s something about being the best or the greatest or being first or in some kind of position of authority that does create some distance. And that’s getting kind of a little into the weeds of qualities and temperament right away. But those are some of the underlying things under one common keyword that I think about with Leo.
CB: Yeah, I like that. And something we’ll do throughout the course, I’ve done throughout the course of this series is contrast. I do tend to use, for example, for Aquarius, the contrast of the opposite, the original Stoic assignments, where Aquarius was primarily at least a cold sign or air was a cold element and that’s why it’s opposite to fire in the zodiac as a contrasting thing between the Sun and Saturn and Leo and Aquarius. So that is definitely a contrast I want to come back to and talk about a lot during the course of this. Because one of the things we’ve done in this series is shown how sometimes you can understand the signs and their individual qualities the best by contrasting them sometimes with other signs. So that’s something I think we should definitely do a lot of during the course of this episode. All right, basic archetypal keywords, what are some basic keywords? Where do we need to start? I think we need to start, one, with the idea of centrality of the Sun being the ruler of Leo and that being one of the main things that we’ll come back to a lot, that it’s not just ruled by the Sun, but it’s also a fixed sign. So out of the three fire signs, Aries is a cardinal sign, so it moves, it initiates things. Leo though being our second fire sign is a fixed fire sign, so it wants to stay in place or it wants to develop some sense of permanence to whatever extent something can be permanent in this impermanent world. The fixed signs are the ones that get as closest to that. So the concept here is going to be fixed fire as one of our primary things. And what is the most fixed and fiery thing that we know of? And it’s actually the Sun which sits there at the very center of our solar system and that all of the other planets revolve around. So there’s these ideas of centrality permanence and other things revolving around it, which I think are at the very heart of not just the significations of the Sun, but also Leo and many of the other keywords then are probably derived from those as central significations.
JO: Yeah, this is something I think about a lot as far as why Leo is like it is and why the Sun is like it is and the connection between those two is that centrality and this idea of the Sun having to do with selfhood and self-concept and some kind of deep internal purpose, almost like divine purpose, if you will, and how that is so central to our lives as humans and is kind of a driving force. And I think with Leo being a fixed fire sign, there can be a desire that we often see bubble up into words like attention seeking or like enjoying the attention or the spotlight. There’s this idea of like wanting to establish an identity and have it be something authentic and permanent in some way, which can be really challenging because identity is fluid like so much of the world as well. But yeah, there’s that huge central component to the Sun in a chart and then also Leo in a chart that really I do think it is where so many of these keywords and ideas stem from.
CB: Right. So one of your points is what could be more central to a person than their identity or their sense of self for who they are, it’s the most important thing almost to any of us, but it’s also one of the things that we almost take for granted the most.
CB: Okay, identity, where do you go with that, Nick, in terms of keywords thinking about identity or centrality or fixed fieriness?
NDB: Yeah. I mean, I think of it as being… When you think of the axis of Leo and Aquarius, Leo is the individual, whereas Aquarius represents sort of like the greater whole, the collective with a capital C, if you will. So I think of the Sun as being about identity, but selfhood, individual will. And in the sense that it’s fixed, it’s about the essential person, the sense of a person that doesn’t change despite experience or maturity or what have you. Leos often have a sort of childlike nature. So there’s something sort of always keeping alive the essential self that I think is also rooted in that fixedness.
CB: Yeah, so like a youthful quality is something that’s often associated with Leo. We saw a little bit of that with Gemini already as a sign as well, but Leo’s definitely one of those other signs that youthfulness or concepts of youth do often come up as very central or very important to Leo.
NDB: Yeah, especially it’s sort of the playful side. I mean, it’s true, Gemini also has a sort of childlike nature to it, but it’s more of the sort of childlike curiosity, whereas Leo it’s play, everything is play. I mean, even when I’m doing astrology, I’m playing. I could be five years old on a swing set. It’s kind of that same feeling enjoying what you do, part of the purpose of everything is to have fun, to play, to enjoy, even when you’re doing very serious adult things.
JO: Yeah, I like that. And when you mentioned Gemini’s childlikeness being related to curiosity, it made me think of how play in a Leonine sense can be kind of performative or I imagine little kids pretending to be an animal or something when we’re talking about actual children. But there’s something very performance-related with Leo as well. And I think sometimes that gets kind of a bad rap for being artificial somehow or fake, which certainly can be, but there’s something about kind of the inner world or the youness, that essential nature that you mentioned, Nick, being expressed into the outward world, which is kind of a performance. And I think that’s pretty central to Leo as well. So that’s something I think about too.
NDB: And also just more broadly central to the Sun, I mean, that’s part of what the Sun does in any chart, it is sort of the part of you that you’re putting out in the world, how you’re sort of presenting yourself.
CB: Yeah, that’s perfect, and that’s also probably following up on the previous sign, which was the Moon or Cancer, which is ruled by the Moon, which sort of receives and reflects the light of the Sun and has a bit of a more internal quality. And we talked a lot about the internal emotional state, whereas Leo being ruled by the Sun focuses more on this quality of emitting light and the Sun emitting things or sending things out and radiating becomes a central astronomical keyword or concept then that just comes over into a bunch of different things. But one of those things can be performance as a means of emitting or radiating one’s light.
NDB: Yeah, that’s very well stated.
CB: Here’s that again. So that might bring up, and I did want to give a shoutout to Camille Michelle Gray that helped me with a lot of the research for this episode and prep for this episode. And she appeared previously on the Gemini episode if people want to go back and check that out, and there’s a link to her website there. But that makes me think a little bit also of how one of the things I’ve been focusing on in this series, how each sign seems to have some sort of corrective function in following after the sign that came before it. And I think right there we’re really getting to one of the core corrective functions about Leo in following after Cancer is that Cancer’s tendency to internalize things and to focus on the internal world of emotions and dreams and feelings and things like that versus the Sun tending instead to be more extroverted and tend to focus on the external world and putting stuff out into the external world, which can be things like performance, but it can also be things like just creating things or the process of creation in the world in general and saying, “This is what I created, I created this thing,” whatever that thing happens to be.
NDB: Yeah. No, that’s also very well put. I absolutely think of the signs as being successive signs are a correction of the previous sign. So yeah, absolutely, that inner world of Cancer is sort of turned on its head when you get to Leo and you’re presenting to the world and, like you said, creating.
JO: Yeah. And I just recently listened to that Cancer episode which was fantastic, and there was a lot of talk about the Moon being related to fortune and body, the Moon joining in the third house, which the first through sixth houses being fortune-related, and then the seventh through twelfth houses being spirit-related. I think of that fortune-spirit dichotomy a lot too with the Sun and Moon, with the Moon being, again, body-related, it’s about our instincts, our internal worlds, and then the Sun being spirit-related. So if fortune is the world happening to us, spirit being us happening to the world. And that also relates to this kind of expressive, creative, performative quality of the Sun and of Leo that is kind of corrective to Cancer. So that’s something I think about a lot, that huge shift from the lunar to the solar with these signs.
CB: I love that. Yeah, that’s a really good point because fortune or the concept of fortune is that which we receive and that just happens to us or befalls us in our environment. But spirit is that which we create through free will or through choice or through action and taking action and making choices and expressing our internal desires and our internal qualities and sort of making them known to the world, is one of the things that Leo really focuses on and excels at. So that’s why it becomes associated with not just performers, but also artists of all kinds and creators of all kinds.
NDB: Yeah. And again, I think, Jo’s analogy is perfect, and it also just applies more broadly to the functions of the Sun and Moon in the chart as well. It’s an extension of that, the Moon being sort of a receiver and the Sun being a sender. Or if you think of two doors, one is an indoor, one is an outdoor. With Cancer, you’re going inside, with Leo, you’re going outside, they’re moving in different directions.
CB: Yeah. That makes me think of one person that has an interesting blend, and we mentioned her in the previous episode, which is the Cancer episode, for being a Sun sign Cancer, but she actually has also or had Leo rising with Mercury in Leo, which is the artist Frida Kahlo. So she’s an interesting blend between Leo placements and Cancer placements in between those two things of her sort of intense focus on her internal world and some of the things that she dealt with and suffered with in love or health or the loss of a child or other things like that, but then also expressing those things through her artwork and sort of putting some of those hardships on display in some sense seems more reminiscent of some of her Leo placements of Leo rising and Mercury in Leo.
NDB: Yeah, this is one of the perfect examples because she really is a Cancerian artist, she really is putting on display… For people who haven’t seen her art, I guess they have to Google it, but it really does center on her physical body, I mean, so much of her painting. She took up painting after this really damaging accident that shattered her, she had a pole go right through her pelvis in a bus accident, as she was recuperating. And so her painting was always centered on her broken body and the healing of her body and how she felt about her body. So it really is processing her internal Cancerian reaction to that, but sort of putting it out there, putting that inner world out on display.
Well, the Leo part was that most of her paintings, I think, feature her herself or self portraits. Yeah, there’s something about that, there’s something Leo teaches us about the value and appropriateness of a healthy obsession almost with self and the journey that each of us is going through in life to understand and to find ourselves and sort of dig it up in different stages and discover who we are and what we’re doing here in some sense and that that can be healthy and restorative. And while there can be downsides or shadow sides to that, there can be something also that’s very enriching and necessary about that at the same time.
JO: Right, I even think about the Sun the analogy of the Sun being the center of the solar system and this idea that there’s a self-centeredness about Leo or the Sun in Leo which there can be. But I think there’s something to that like a genuine self-fascination or a desire to really fully understand your own authenticity and be able to radiate that outwards. And thinking about this even in the context of relationship, your own self and who you are, your needs and desires and your authenticity is such an important reference point in relationship or in a group setting or just interacting with the world. And I think there’s so much focus on cultivating that and kind of honoring that with Leo.
CB: Yeah, that’s a really good point. Funny note that Camille Michelle Gray noted in her notes in her research for this when she was helping me was that Salma Hayek who campaigned for the Frida Kahlo film and who ended up playing Frida Kahlo in that film 20 years ago, that biographical film, has Venus and Mars in Leo and her Venus conjoins Frida Kahlo’s first house Mercury in Leo, which is kind of a beautiful and brilliant way sometimes that that can be expressed or that individual actors, sometimes artists can have astrological connections that echo or in some ways reflect the things that they’re actually demonstrating through their acting or through their art.
NDB: I love that this is coming up. Just to be a little more Leo about this, the very first astrological employment I ever had in 2000 was writing articles for StarIQ.com. And the very first article I ever wrote for them was called Frida Kahlo and Salma Hayek: Peas in a Pod or Saturn in Pisces? The film hadn’t actually been made yet, they had only just secured Julie Taymor to direct it. So it was going to be made, and I was just writing about the fact that it was going to be made. And I wrote this whole thing about how Frida and Salma both have Saturn in Pisces and how it applied to both their lives and how it connected them and so forth. So just as an aside, it’s so lovely to be 22 years later to have the same subject coming up.
CB: Yeah, that’s brilliant. And we don’t have a birth time for Salma Hayek, right?
NDB: No, she was born in Mexico, and it’s harder to get Mexican birth times.
CB: I just did a noon chart, but for those watching the video version, here’s her chart with Mars at five degrees of Leo if this is correct and Venus at 22, does that look correct?
NDB: Yeah. And there’s that Saturn in Pisces at the bottom. And yeah, they both had Jupiter in Cancer for that.
JO: Yeah, I was just about to say they share that too.
NDB: Yeah. I mean, effectively Salma Hayek was born on what would’ve been Frida’s second Saturn return, which is always a Jupiter return as well. Frida died about, she died in ’54 shortly after the attack on Guatemala. The last thing she did was protest that. So yeah, she died in ’54 during the Mars retrograde that went from Capricorn to Sagittarius, second Mars retrograde in Capricorn since she was born with Mars retrograde in Capricorn. So there’s an interesting theme with all that as well, but even though Frida died long before Salma was born, there’s still that sort of Saturn connection between them, I suppose.
CB: Nice. All right, are there any other examples that either of you can think of besides those two that invoke some of the keywords that we’re talking about or thinking of at this point when it comes to Leos or do you have any favorite Leo celebrities or examples that you think of when you think of the sign?
NDB: Well, I mean, I have a bunch of Leos I think about, but they’re not creative people, they’re more the shadow side of Leo.
CB: Okay. Well, we’ve been saying only positive things, so at some point in this episode we do have to say some negative things so maybe that can be the good segue. So give it to me straight, what are some of the shadow ones?
NDB: Yeah, I know. I started this episode by talking about how great we are, but some of the worst people who ever lived have been Leos, and it’s worth mentioning that. You your Napoleons, your Mussolinis, your Castros, and actually for that matter, sort of merging that talking about people who are both dictators and very creative. Film director like Stanley Kubrick or Alfred Hitchcock, they were like emperors in their own little realm of filmmaking, very creative people, but sort of the same kind of personalities that try to sort of control everything around them, I suppose.
CB: Yeah, I like what that brings up, let’s dwell on that for a minute. So Napoleon’s really an interesting example in terms of people sometimes that gravitate towards leadership roles, let’s say, and Leo can be very good about being the person that steps up and takes charge and leads a group of people. Because sometimes when you’re in a group of people, there’s this effect where it’s like nobody wants to be the guy that like stands out and wants to be the one who has to take the responsibility for calling the shots and things like that. And sometimes there can be this gridlock where if there’s nobody there to do that, nothing gets done. But if there’s somebody with really strong Leo qualities in the room, they will step up and be like, “No, I’ll do it. I’ll be the leader, and I will take charge and lead this,” because they have this internal sense that they know what’s best to do or that they don’t shy away from the spotlight and that’s not something that’s off putting to them, but instead it’s something that feeds them kind of, which I think is part of the definition and a little bit of being an extrovert, those people who are energized by being in public and going out and interacting with people instead of depleted by it. So Leo in some sense gets energized by being in the spotlight or by leading a group of people or something like that. But the downside of that in some instances with some of those like, let’s say, Napoleon can be abusing that or going too far and trying to make oneself the center of the entire universe and there can be this egotistical sort of streak to that in some sense.
NDB: Yeah, there’s a double-edged sword to the Leo sense of self. It’s often said Leos will take all the credit for something, but they’ll also take all the blame. It depends on the circumstance. And there’s truth to both those extremes, but that sense of it all falls on them whether it really does or doesn’t, there’s this sort of presumption that in fact they do.
CB: Here’s Napoleons chart, so Sun at 22 Leo and Mercury at 6 Leo. Possibly if he was born around this time of day, which is possible around just before midday with Scorpio rising and the Sun and Mercury in the tenth whole sign house. So for those that aren’t history buffs on 18th century history, what did Napoleon do or why is he a good example of a Leo and both the positive sides and the negative sides?
NDB: Well, Napoleon basically in the middle of the French revolution as it was all getting sort of too crazy and unmanageable, he sort of surfaced as a military leader. Part of the French Revolution involved France being at war with every country that surrounded it. And so he took over as a military leader and really sort of countered all the military action being taken against France because of the revolution. But that sort of spread, and he went from being a successful general to becoming the political leader of France, and people were still okay with that because the revolution was kind of ending. But then he crowned himself emperor, I mean, the most Leo thing you can do.
CB: Yeah, never put a part…
NDB: No, but it’s even more Leo than that, give me a second here because–
CB: If you give them a chance, they will crown themselves as emperor, that’s all I’m saying.
NDB: But he’s even more Leo than that, because usually what would happen if you had a new coronation with a Catholic nation, the Pope would crown the monarch. But what Napoleon did was he had the Pope come to the cathedral where he was being crowned to watch as Napoleon picked up the crown and put it on his own head. It’s just layer upon layer of Leo-ness. He took it a step further. And so eventually he got too big for his breaches, he invaded a few too many countries. Portugal and Spain wasn’t a good idea, Russia was definitely not a good idea, and things rebounded against him and he was dethroned.
CB: Well, and then they deported him in isolation on an island. Then he escaped and wasn’t there, something crazy where then he comes up… So he gets caught, he gets exiled.
NDB: To an island just off Europe.
CB: Right. So they won’t kill him, but they put him on an island and they say, “You’re going to live your rest of your life here and that’s it. So you’re lucky basically, but you’re to…”
NDB: And it’s an island very close to the island… He’s Corsican, and I think they put him on Sardinia or somewhere… It’s one of those small islands close there, but they put him on an island that he grew up on. They set him up so he could have been emperor of this little island just to get him out of the way, but that wasn’t good enough.
CB: That was enough. So he escapes, he gets back on the mainland in France, and he raises another army. And I think at one point early on he goes up against another army. And don’t they lay down their arms and join him or something?
NDB: That’s the first thing that happens. It’s called the hundred days. So he escapes, he gets back to mainland France, and he’s leading up an army, and this resistance force is raised up to counter him. But when they come up against him, they just can’t do it, and they swear fealty and get behind him.
CB: He must have had really good hair or something like that. That’s what I imagine is just like…
NDB: He did when he was young, but by this point he’s looking more like me, things are thinning out and he’s not quite his former attractive self. Mind you, he got his portrait painters to make him look better than he really was, that’s the other thing.
CB: Yeah, that’s very important.
NDB: Jacques-Louis David happened to be in his corner, and that’s the guy, that’s another Leo painter, that’s a guy you want in your corner. Because he’ll paint you mounted on a horse rising up the Alps with a sword in your hand and all that stuff.
CB: Well, picture from Wikipedia, low key is not a word for Leo, they have to go all the way. The extravagance of presentations sometimes is one of the Leo keywords.
NDB: Right. Look up the portrait of him by Jacques-Louis David, it’s an earlier one when he’s got his long hair and he’s on his mounted horse climbing the Alps about to sort out the Hapsburgs and Italy.
JO: I love this idea that there’s a Leo painter that’s in his corner for this ancient Instagram filter idea of like, “Oh, don’t worry, I’ll make it look really good.”
NDB: I mean, David had been painting all along the Revolution. One of his famous paintings is Marat when he’d been assassinated falling out of the bathtub. He’d been documenting the… Yeah, there you go, there you go.
JO: There it is.
CB: That’s good, red cape.
NDB: Yeah. So Napoleon was in charge of his own PR, and he really knew what he was doing. Those paintings speak volumes. There was no photography yet, so that’s it, that is your Instagram.
CB: So Leo has some kind of innate sense of not just PR, but public perception of the way they are perceived and the way the public perceives them being really important thing to them.
NDB: Yeah. I mean, I mentioned Alfred Hitchcock earlier, but this is a director, most film directors sit behind the camera and they’re sort of invisible, but you’ve got a director who was a personality as big as his films, and he even put himself, I don’t know if you know this, but in every Alfred Hitchcock film, he would have a little cameo where he turned up. It’s such a Leo thing to do. So there’s that sense of really having a sense of how you come off, how you’re presented. I mean, that’s what the Sun’s about, it’s the presentation.
JO: Yeah, and I also think about what the Sun physically does in our world. When it’s daytime, it’s light outside and you can see things, the Sun illuminates or reveals. We can even link that back to spirit versus fortune and revelation and things like that. But on a really basic level, you see that with the charisma or this idea of the spotlight with Leo and the Sun. It really is about showing people something. And so there is this inherent sense of how you’re being perceived or who is perceiving you and kind of there’s sometimes this feeling of wanting to curate that to be a specific way, whether that is driven by hubris or a desire for control or just a desire to be really true to yourself and radiate what is authentic. But yeah, that perception thing is so huge just based on the Sun being the planet who illuminates everything.
CB: I like that, that’s a really good point. And so the concept of light and what can be seen and also illuminating things, but also anatomically the Sun is also associated in astrology with sight and with the eyes or at least with one of the eyes in ancient astrology. So it has actually a direct connection with the eyes themselves. And sometimes ancient astrological text will say if you’re having a really bad transit to the Sun or something like that, that could involve an injury to the eye or something that sort of obscures your eyesight for a period of time.
JO: Yeah. And that makes me think of this phrase, “What you see is what you get,” which is not always the case with Leo, because there can be curation and performance and whatnot. But there is this idea that I think of of kind of being able to walk the talk or striving to do that, trying to really put into action and show what you’re about rather than just talk about it. And so that’s something I think about too that feels kind of related to this idea of sight and things like that.
CB: Okay. I’m just looking through my list of Leo Sun people. It’s like a dirty data one, but Yves Saint Laurent was a designer.
NDB: Yeah, I don’t know much about him, but…
CB: Okay. But they were a French fashion designer with a Sun, Venus, and Mercury in Leo. I like that idea of fashion, fashion I think is one of the… Well, there may have been a little bit of that already in Taurus, Leo, I think, is the first one where we get to a really fashionable sign or a sign that focuses on fashion as part of the presentation and what you’re wearing as an expression of your sort of internal radiation of your qualities and your light.
NDB: Yeah. I mean, think of Jackie Kennedy, a Leo and a sort of a fashion icon. The notion of a first lady being a fashion icon hadn’t been a thing since Dolley Madison maybe. Not to sort of demean anyone, but first ladies were typically seen as sort of old matriarchs, if you will, but there was nothing matriarchal about her. She was this glamorous… I mean, hell, what’s the most famous uniform of the 20th century? It’s probably the Chanel suit that she’s wearing when her husband’s murdered. That becomes one of the most definable fashion statements of the century. Ironically, it’s based on Chanel’s design of the uniform she had to wear in an orphanage when she was growing up, but that’s just beautiful irony.
CB: She wore that, it was a pink dress.
NDB: With a sort of pill box hat type thing.
CB: But when her husband was shot in the motorcade next to her and died, she continued wearing it that day during… There’s a famous photo of her of the next–
NDB: When Johnson’s being inaugurated.
CB: Being sworn in. And what did she say? She said, “I want them to see what they did to him or something like that.”
NDB: Yeah, exactly put a shining light on…
CB: She was like, “I want them to see.” So she had Scorpio rising and the Sun, Mercury, and the Midheaven, the degree of the Midheaven as well as the lot of fortune in Leo in the tenth whole sign house. So that is a pretty good one.
NDB: And I mean, just on the themes of presidents, I mean, think about the Leo presidents we’ve had. Well, there’s three I can think of, and two of them were very Leo in the way they acted. The third one, it’s a little more subtle, that’s Herbert Hoover.
CB: Hoover, he was such [clamp] away in character.
NDB: Well, no, he had his own way of being Leo, but it’s not quite the same way. But let’s go with the ones that are more familiar to us, Bill Clinton and Barack Obama. No matter where you stand on the political spectrum, their Leo-ness compared to some of their peers is quite obvious.
CB: Right. So they were both Sun sign Leos. So here is Obama who had the Sun, Mercury, the Descendant, Uranus and the north node in Leo in the seventh whole sign house. And then Bill Clinton, who had the Sun, Pluto, Mercury and Saturn all in Leo in the 11th house.
NDB: Yeah, and of course we’re leaving out one guy, but–
CB: Or two Leo risings that are–
NDB: Yes, exactly. I think we know who one of them is right off the bat because…
CB: Let’s go chronologically.
NDB: Let’s go chronologically. Save the best for last.
CB: So the first one was George W. Bush, so the younger George Bush is a Leo rising, right?
NDB: Yeah, and just like Frida Kahlo he’s turned into a painter. Not quite as good, but…
CB: All right, there’s his chart. So Ascendant at seven degrees of Leo, Mercury, Pluto in Venus in Leo in the first whole sign house. And then more recently we had another president who had Leo rising and that was Donald Trump, who there were two different times, but when the birth certificate was released, it turned out he still had 29 Leo rising. So barely a Leo, but I think fully qualified Leo. I don’t think anyone would argue that point at this point.
NDB: Yeah. I think since he’s coming up, it’s worth talking about Regulus the star, which is very close to his Mars and Ascendant. Regulus is considered one of the royal stars, a very bright star right on the ecliptic. It’s the heart of the lion in terms of its place in the constellation. And like the royal stars, it comes with a sort of blessing/curse to it. The blessing is prominence and authority and all the sort of leadership traits, charisma that Leo embodies, but it comes with this big sort of caveat which is arrogance. People with prominent Regulus are punished for their arrogance. And no matter what you think of DT, if you ask him, he’s being… Forget about what we think, if you ask him, he’s being punished for his arrogance. He’s constantly complaining about how victimized he is and how he’s the most victimized person in history and everything.
CB: Yeah, that’s a good one. Let’s contrast those two. And it’s a little hard obviously because it comes down to political takes and people’s political views. I’m fine with that because just as an astrologer, I’m okay recognizing some of that and recognizing the two pieces. But Obama, for example, rose to prominence and power and became president relatively quickly in his career due to his charisma or partially due to his charisma, he was also an amazing orator in terms of his speeches and things like that, but there was this charismatic quality to him. And I wasn’t quite around paying attention to politics in the early nineties, but I’m sort of told that Bill Clinton had something similar like that in terms of charisma.
NDB: The first time I ever laid eyes on Bill Clinton same way a lot of people did was he’s on Arsenio Hall wearing sunglasses playing the saxophone, which was compared to George H. W. Bush. It was so here’s this sort of young, cool, hip guy literally showing off on a late night talk show. And then the existing president who was well qualified and competent, but just didn’t have what it takes.
CB: Yeah, so cool, that’s a good keyword. I think I actually like that as a keyword for Leo. Leos are kind of cool or coolness is like a…
NDB: Yeah, there’s a funny thing Michael Lutin said to me once, that people when they’re single act more like their opposite sign when they’re projecting, when they’re trying to sort of attract. I think cool is really Aquarius, but Leos will act that in the same way Aquarians will sometimes pretend they’re Leos. There is something about that axis that does sort of transfer back and forth. And I always like that analogy and I sort of know what he means, you might try to project the opposite of what you are in certain instances.
CB: Yeah, that makes sense. So Obama had this coolness, this charisma. One of the interesting things about Obama in the 2016 election is one of the first times I ever saw him truly mess up or be what I conceptualized as truly having a downfall through arrogance was with the 2016 election. Because nobody thought Trump was going to win, and Obama did mock Trump a few times during the course of that election before it or leading up to it of just like, “You’re never going to be president, that’s absurd.” And then it in 2016 happened and suddenly Trump won, and it surprised everyone, even Trump that night looked visibly shocked when he went up and gave the acceptance speech. And then Obama basically started his second Saturn return through Capricorn, and it was this huge humbling moment where all of a sudden some of those things or some of that arrogance sort of came back to haunt him a little bit when his arch nemesis then took over the country for the next four years and proceeded to systematically undo much of what he had set up. But that’s a really interesting thing, that arrogance can sometimes be the downfall or can backfire on Leo as part of the shadow side of the Leo archetype.
NDB: That reminds me, this is slightly not off topic, but just sort of not specifically thinking of Obama and Trump, it brings to mind another big keyword for Leo and that’s loyalty. That’s a big one. And in fact, when you think about history, when you want to hurt a Leo, you stab them in the back, you betray them. I think of Julio Caesar, who we don’t know if he was a Leo, but he sort of embodies Leo and that sort of leadership role and just being sort of taken down that way. That is a sort of a classic Leo takedown. So yeah, there’s something about that, the loyalty people command. I mean, people we’ve been talking about, Napoleon enjoyed as we’ve demonstrated incredible loyalty. And it’s a Leo sort of value and arguably the highest one.
CB: Yeah, they really value it and sometimes almost demand loyalty, because to be disloyal or seen as disloyal to Leo can be one of the biggest things that can put you on the bad list for a Leo. What do you think about that, Jo?
JO: Yeah, I agree, and I’m glad you brought that up. Loyalty is a very core Leo characteristic. It makes me think of some other Leo characteristics such as sincerity or a very genuine quality or even honesty. Of course, there’s not always pure honesty, especially when we’re talking about politicians obviously. But there is kind of an earnestness that can come along with Leo and a generosity of heart as well. I think of terms like open-hearted when I think of Leo and their best qualities, we talked a little bit about the shadow stuff. But I think Leo placements can be very, very loyal and in their earnestness can expect that from others and at least hope and wish for that from others, because why wouldn’t you when you are openhearted, when there is that trust? I do agree that that trust being broken is a huge, it’s heartbreaking speaking of the heart and Leo. But it’s a huge burn to a Leo, and I think that’s super important for this sign of the Sun that is about this almost kind of transparency and honesty, those are some of the other related things I think about when it comes to loyalty.
CB: Yeah, that makes sense.
NDB: Yeah, and I love the word you use, earnestness, because that’s so Leo, right or wrong. Again, it comes down to that childlike thing. I think of Leos as being kind of gullible. If they’re cynical, it’s because life made them that way and it’s not innate. Not like you Scorpios, we’re not born just sort suspecting everyone
CB: Born with a switch blade in hand right out of the uterus.
NDB: Yeah. No, there is a sort of childlike presumption like, “Hey, I’m going to love everyone and everyone’s going to love me.” And I mean, of course, life eventually sorts that out.
CB: One of the funniest significations I laughed at when I did a poll like I had done for these episodes on Twitter of what keywords you associate, one of the funniest ones I laughed at that somebody gave was golden retriever for Leo.
JO: I saw that, and I was like, “Goddamn it.”
CB: Yeah, that’s really good.
JO: I hate it because it’s kind of true, there’s an exuberance. I mean, I have Jupiter in Leo also, so this is coming from my own bias, but I’ve always had that kind of undying optimism somehow also with angular Saturn, I don’t understand how it works. But yeah, there is this exuberance and people…
NDB: Eager to please.
JO: Eager to please, just like dogs are so loyal as well. Dogs aren’t hiding anything or censoring anything, there’s that pure life force just like radiating out, and there is something very Leonine about it.
CB: Yeah, just you big, dumb, beautiful animal. Leos are kind of the himbos of the zodiac.
NDB: We’re going to start a world war between all Leos and all Scorpios.
JO: I’m taking it as a compliment. I know Virgo is a different episode, but I think about the qualities of Leo and sort of the corrective function of Virgo to Leo. And I think about Virgo as modulating or editing a little bit of that, and of course I do, I have three Virgo placements to go with my two Leo placements.
NDB: Three Virgo placements, you call those Virgo.
JO: Hey, we both have Venus in Virgo, so we can gel on that.
CB: Astrologers have stellium measuring contests, that’s the new thing. I didn’t realize that was the thing, but now, okay, all right. Keep it in your pants.
NDB: Leo’s going to Leo.
CB: Yeah. All right, well, keep it in your pants for this episode. And then that’s great, the modulating quality, because it’s good to start bringing that contrast which is when we switch to Virgo and you get that corrective function or feature of that sign, one of the things is it’s much more analytical and a little bit intellectual and almost overly focused on the intellect, but also there’s a humbling that happens. Suddenly you get way more humble when it comes to Virgo, and that’s another thing that can happen is sometimes this corrective function can almost overdo it compared to the previous sign. And I think that’s part of the major contrast between Leo and Virgo is sometimes Leo can be more self-centered or more egotistical in some ways, and then Virgo can take it the opposite direction and be almost self-sacrificing or just overly helpful or overly trying to be sort of an assistant to somebody else in some sense.
JO: Oh, go ahead, Nick.
NDB: No, you go ahead.
JO: I was going to say, thinking of Leo and Virgo together and contrasting them, there’s this idea of what was expressed in Leo moving into Virgo, it’s like, “Okay, but how is it useful, but what is its function?” And that too can go way too far because Leo, again, counterbalances Virgo by saying it’s useful because it’s authentic, it is expression, it’s life force, it’s the creative force that we all have and we all have a right to put forth into the world. And arguably that’s an important thing for each and every one of us to put into the world. But a little bit of curating or editing or optimizing is a good thing with Leo and Virgo together, but it’s interesting to think about it going both ways, not just from Leo to Virgo, but also how does Leo counterbalance that overly analytical kind of analysis paralysis thing that Virgo can do.
CB: Yeah, for sure. That makes sense. That made for some reason think of gold. Gold is actually a major Sun, but also Leo thing and just the notion of gold or sometimes liking to decorate in gold or liking golden things. That was one of the funny, weirdly stereotypical things about Trump when he was president and just looking at his biography, is he liked to decorate everything with gold and that was one of his goals.
NDB: Gold toilet, I mean.
CB: Yeah. I mean, and so that’s an interesting thing. So we haven’t mentioned that as the contrast, so we had Obama and some of those versions of Leo with Obama with his stellium, that interesting contrast of the Aquarius rising with Obama and Saturn in Capricorn, but then that huge Leo stellium over in the seventh house. Early on they called him cool headed Obama or something like that.
NDB: Yeah. I mean, do you remember when he debated John McCain and the next night John Stewart put up a picture of Obama that made him look like he was on the cover of a soul hits record album, meanwhile McCain was wandering back and forth not knowing where the camera was and all that. When I think of Obama and the first time I saw him, it reminds me of the first time I saw Clinton. I saw Obama in 2004, he gave a speech at the Democratic convention. And people immediately zeroed in on him, on his charisma and his speaking skills. And next thing you knew he was winning all these primaries and on his way to become president. So he really sort of came out of the blue, and it was really in that same way that I remember seeing Clinton, where just out of the blue he appeared on TV and everyone knew instantly, “Oh, this should be the dude.”
CB: Yeah. And then it was like Obama also had the, I think, a Mercury-Neptune square. And there were some of the questions about early on his promises or what he wanted to accomplish and sort of the platform that he rose into the office with versus what he was actually able to accomplish once he got into office, sometimes falling short of some of those promises. And there were so many interesting contrasts then leading into the Trump presidency, and so if we could talk a little bit about some of the positives and some of the negatives, because I felt like we got a weirdly stark, not stark, but crash course in some Leo significations and some positive stereotypical ones and some negative stereotypical ones with Trump that were really interesting that might be worth just mentioning here as part of this exploration. So one of them, I guess, was sort of showiness sometimes which can lead into sort of a vanity.
NDB: Telling everyone that the stakes you make are the greatest stakes, the university you make is the greatest university, the buildings you build is the greatest building, I mean, that’s…
CB: So everything is the greatest or you put your name on everything and that your name itself becomes the branding.
NDB: Yeah, yeah.
CB: So what is it? It’s a sort of egotisticalness or something, because there’s different ways to do that that probably would work. And in some ways that did work for him and he became very successful financially and as a businessman with that, and there’s probably other… I’m trying to think of other versions of that, because sometimes it can come off as kind of like gaudy if that’s the right word versus I’m trying to think of other versions of that that appear less like that or more sort of culturally somehow passable in some way.
NDB: Yeah. I mean, the gaudiness I think is part of it. Not unlike Napoleon crowning himself, that same kind of thing, just really going over the top with whatever you’re presenting. There’s an excess that can easily be reached.
CB: So maybe self-aggrandizing can be one of the keywords.
JO: Yeah, self-aggrandizing was the exact term I was thinking of, something about this centrality of selfhood and authenticity that’s important, but just overblowing it to where you expect everyone to get in your orbit when really surely there are people in your life that are kind of in your orbit and the self is an important reference point, but no one’s the most important person in the world by any means. And it’s interesting thinking too about what you were saying, Chris, the same sort of theme being somehow acceptable or not being as gaudy. And you mentioned Jackie O, but fashion icon. You can be iconic while also being tasteful, and it’s again this idea of excessiveness or excess versus is it modulated? Is there enough self-awareness to be able to have the charisma and direct it and use it and utilize it like we saw from someone like Obama or many other Leo examples? I think Beyoncé, was Beyoncé in your Leo examples, Chris?
NDB: Isn’t she a Virgo?
CB: She’s a Mars in Leo.
JO: Mars in Leo, I was going to say, I think there’s a Leo placement at least, or Whitney Houston.
JO: Yeah, there you go.
NDB: I mean, I’ve been waiting to pull her out.
CB: The other one that goes with what you’re saying, Jo, is Kanye West, who has Saturn in Leo. And I keep thinking we don’t have a birth time for Obama, there’s different conflicting…
NDB: You mean Kanye?
CB: For Kanye, yeah. There’s many different conflicting times. So people shouldn’t rely on the ones that are currently circulating, but I strongly suspect that that Saturn is playing a more prominent role in his chart if we knew what his birth time was. Either because he’s Leo rising or because he has Saturn ruling the Ascendant or something like that, because that’s his only Leo placement, but that one Leo placement is doing a lot of work in his chart with some of those things that we were just talking about, where he’s a great example of someone who on the one hand is incredibly just ridiculously talented as an artist and as a creative person and has risen to such a high level of fame and acclaim because of that and because of his skills and ability to also not just create art, but also to identify good art himself and to curate or pull some of the best pieces from it. Because Kanye originally came up as a producer making beats, but also going back and taking old songs or clips from songs and sampling them and then creating these amazing beats based on that. So there’s something also with Leo or some level of creatives about not just creating something nice, but also being able to recognize and identify something that is aesthetically pleasing at the same time.
JO: Yeah, that’s a huge thing, and this might be veering if we still want to talk about examples, we can and should. But it makes me think of this idea of Leos being the best hype people imaginable. If you need someone to gas you up, find a Leo who loves you to do it. And there’s this idea of not only being able to attract attention, but also to direct it. And I believe it’s in the first decan of Leo that Austin talks a lot about this in 36 Faces, which I was just reading those parts recently. But yeah, there’s this ability to…
CB: You have the book. That’s kind of… What’s the word for that? You’re kind of just dropping that in the middle that you happen to own–
JO: Yeah, just a little humble brag.
CB: Right, exactly. Because that book is–
JO: Yeah, it’s just over there on my couch, whatever.
CB: You have like three copies?
JO: Yeah, just casually just in case.
CB: Nobody has copies of the book, it’s been out of print forever, and Austin is really taking his sweet time getting version two out, but it’ll be out soon I am told. So there, go ahead.
JO: That was really it, just this idea of being able to direct the spotlight and direct attention rather than just gather it or absorb it or inflate because of it. And we see that with Kanye being able to like really recognize talent and sort of transfer the spotlight to these people who then there’s this idea of like, “Oh, Kanye said they were good, so we should pay attention.” And then we see like authority coming through or like kind of leadership qualities there, these other kind of Leo aspects. But being able to direct attention not just absorb it is something I think about a lot.
CB: I love that, that’s brilliant, the delegation of the spotlight, the ability to delegate the spotlight and point it in different directions like the Nicki Minaj verse on Monster in his 2010 album and how he featured her there. And that really just like made her entire career at that point in some ways and sort of allowed her in some ways to outshine him on his own song. I don’t know, personally, actually not knowing if he was super stoked about that or if that was okay with him, but that’s kind of what happened, and it was something he’s been good at during the course of his career.
NDB: I think a classic example is during one of those award shows and Taylor Swift had just been awarded an award, and he went on stage and snatched the mic from her and said Beyoncé should have won or something like that. I mean, talk about advocating for people.
CB: Yeah. Well, that’s a great example because what he was trying to do in his semi-drunken state was point the spotlight to his friend Beyoncé who he felt like was being unfairly not given the award for having what he considered to be the better music video and that it was given to Taylor Swift. And so he was trying to redirect the spotlight from Taylor onto his friend. Although, ironically, I think that was one of the things that led to… Because he also viewed that I think personally as an act of loyalty to his friends, to Beyoncé and to Jay-Z, and ironically, that was part of the beginning of the falling out for several years, I think, between him and that couple was they didn’t appreciate it and he didn’t appreciate that his act of loyalty to them wasn’t returned in kind or wasn’t appreciated in some ways.
NDB: Right, I should look at the transits for when that happened. But it just called to mind after everything Jo was saying, I was thinking like, “Well, that really did the trick.”
CB: So here’s Kanye’s noon chart, the houses and the Ascendant are not necessarily correct, but there’s that Saturn at 12 degrees of Leo. And it’s interesting, it’s squaring Uranus at eight degrees of Scorpio. Well, sextile Jupiter 14. Six
NDB: Oh, sorry, my eyes are failing me. Sorry.
CB: Yeah, and Saturn’s at 12 Leo and it’s sextiling also Jupiter at 14 Gemini. There’s other things there though with Kanye and the Leo example, because it’s like Saturn in Leo where Saturn has its detriment or it’s antithesis or exile. So it struggles a little bit more to do well, because it’s in a foreign position there, and this is something that seems like Kanye struggles with, where on the one hand he has been able to become very successful and become a central figure culturally over the course of the past decade or two. But then at the same time, sometimes he goes too far or sometimes his self-aggrandizing tendencies get the best of him.
NDB: Looks just a little bit ridiculous sometimes.
CB: Little bit over the top sometimes. There’s some keywords there, it’s not flamboyant, but there’s other versions of that like extravagance. Extravagance is a good Leo keyword I feel like. There’s a lot of other things we can say about Kanye, about Trump. Why don’t we start moving on? One of the things I like to do is to contrast, we’ve done a good job so far of contrasting Leo and Cancer a little bit, Leo and Virgo. We might want to move into contrasting it with some of the other signs. One of the ones that we’ve started to do a little bit was Leo versus Aquarius, and that might be something that we could get a little bit more mileage out of. I know we’ve done a little bit already. But Aquarius is also a fixed sign, it’s an air sign. So it’s an air sign. The ancient Stoic qualities in like Vettius Valens, he associated air with coldness or air with a cooling property. So that was supposed to contrast Aquarius which is right in the middle of the winter season in the Northern hemisphere with Leo which is right in the middle of the summer. So this notion of cold being opposite to hot and also Saturn being the furthest and slowest and dimmest of the visible planets being the traditional ruler of Aquarius being opposite to the Sun ruling Leo. What are some of the ways or what are some of the keywords with Aquarius that kind of contrast with the keywords for Leo?
NDB: Detached, because Leo is not detached. It might pretend sometimes on a front, but yeah.
CB: So Camille wrote down some ones or did you have something, Jo?
JO: Oh, I was just going to say it’s hard for me to think of the contrast between Leo and Aquarius without thinking of the contrast between the Sun and Saturn, and the Sun having so much to do with selfhood and those kinds of things and identity with Saturn being just not concerned with those things, much less concerned about the self and more concerned with what is sustainable, things like longevity. I imagine the king in the center of the capital or the city and then the hermit that lives out on the mountaintop being Saturn just reading old texts all day and meditating. There are very, very opposite priorities when it comes to the Sun and Saturn and I think we see that reflected as it trickles down into the signs they rule. So those are things I think about a lot with Leo and Aquarius.
CB: Yeah, for sure.
NDB: Yeah. And by extension of that, the childlike quality I was mentioning with Leo that extends through adulthood is in reverse with Aquarians who were born at 80.
CB: Yeah, I like that as with my Aquarius rising. One of the things though is that it’s complimentary, those opposites. It’s one of the important things in the Zodiac to remember. It’s really insightful that you actually see come up in charts or in your actual life, which is me having that Aquarius rising with Saturn ruling the Ascendant and everything that I just attract Leo risings and many of my closest friends have always been Leo rising, including the two of you. So with the Ascendant being opposites, sometimes that old cliche notion of opposites attract is true because it creates a wholeness when you take two halves or two half sides of the same coin.
NDB: For sure. Speaking to someone who not only has the Ascendant opposite your Ascendant but my Sun is opposite your Moon, my Moon is opposite your Sun. We’ve always had that polarity going with us.
JO: Yeah, and what’s interesting right now is my partner has Aquarius rising as well but is a Leo. So he really has both of those things present in his chart very prominently. So it’s interesting to see that contrast in lived experience like right in front of me all the time, that it can feel very like it can be like a torn into type of feeling sometimes when you have that contrast present in natal charts. Yeah, I’m getting to see a lot of ways that that Leo Aquarius axis plays out just in everyday life with that.
CB: Yeah, that’s like Obama’s chart was like that with Aquarius rising and the Sun and Leo or even it makes me also think of Carl Jung who had Aquarius rising with Saturn and Aquarius and the Sun and Uranus and Leo in the 7th.
JO: Yeah, and I think with Aquarius, there’s this like bird’s eye view idea, this like Saturnian perspective, this broadening where with Leo we really get this understanding from the inside out. That’s something I think about too. Because you said detached and that makes me think of the word distance. There is more perspective of where you were one individual fits into the whole with Aquarius, where you are very in that perspective with Leo viewing it from the inside rather than from the outside.
CB: Sure, yeah.
NDB: Although I would modify that only slightly to say that Leo is also a big picture sign, but like you’re saying the reverse, they’re both big picture signs, as opposed to like Virgo when we were just to go back for a second that the corrective of Virgo and Leo. Virgo goes into all the little details whereas Leo just wants the big picture, if you will. But I agree, it’s not a detached big picture. It’s a perspective big picture. Whereas indeed Aquarius is about the totality of things, the real wholeness of things
CB: Like that ideal so if like insider versus outsider and Leo being more insider because it’s at the center of things versus Saturn and Aquarius is more that which is outside or that which is on the fringes or the periphery of things or the periphery of society. Camille Michelle Gray had written down some contrasts that I thought were very good for Leo and Aquarius. Let me see if I can share some of those really quickly here. Here it is. Leo as me versus Aquarius as us. Leo is warm during the summer versus Aquarius is cool during the winter. Presence versus distance, the cheerleader versus the misfit, spontaneity versus rigid, Saturn is very rigid. Sun Saturn subjective, objective, emotive versus aloof. To trust or forgive versus to question or you might even say to reject. Charisma versus awkwardness, status versus outcast, center of attention versus groups, the showman versus the intellectuals since Aquarius is an air sign which tend to be more intellectual or more talkative, to be the light versus to enlighten, to perform versus to inform, thinking versus being, king and queen versus the kingdom.
NDB: Yeah, that’s brilliant. That’s very well done.
CB: Yeah, I thought those are some really good contrasts that she came up with. Sometimes it’s only through contrasting a sign with those other signs that you really start to get a much clearer picture of things.
NDB: Absolutely. These axes are always the main thrust in everything. One sign is not one way unless the other sign is the other way. It’s what defines them.
CB: In order to have one thing you have to have its opposite or in order… It’s not usually framed in this way of good or bad, but in order to have good there has to be bad to contrast it with was like an ancient like stoic conceptualization for being able to even make distinctions like that as being able to contrast things.
NDB: Right, right, indeed.
CB: All right. You have something, Jo?
JO: It just seemed a little bit related or mildly related, this idea that when you have a very bright light, it casts these very strong shadows too. I think about that with Leo. I know one of the ways the three fire signs are differentiated, and I believe this as in Camille’s notes as well and I know it was something I learned very early on in my studies, this idea of Aries being a firecracker, being a cardinal fire sign, Sagittarius being the mutable fire sign and like to a wildfire or fire that spreads, and Leo being like a bonfire or a hearth fire. So there’s this idea, again, of centrality, of fixity. But when I think about Saturn and Aquarius being on the very edge of where the light reaches, if you’re thinking about like a bonfire at night in a field or something like that and all the shadow that’s also created by all that light, it’s harkening back to these ideas of arrogance or hubris or some of those shadow things we discussed with Leo.
CB: Hubris is a good keyword.
JO: It’s usually regulus related to thinking back to what Nick was saying, yeah.
CB: Good, yeah. I’m glad we’re doing this. We’re getting into the contrast of the three fire signs and the fiery triplicity of the difference between Aries which is ruled by Mars, and as a cardinal sign. You said a firecracker, and I like that because a firecracker is something that comes in fast out of nowhere and there’s just sudden explosion or sudden fire and a pop and a loud bang, but then it immediately goes away and it doesn’t last. It’s not lasting in some sense, but it can still make a big difference in that initial instance in which it explodes or in which there is like an initial explosion in some sense.
NDB: Yeah, I guess the only other one I would throw in for Aries is the idea of lighting the match, which is often used as a metaphor for any kind of like igniting something, just that strike and the sense that you’re beginning something with that strike of a match is an image we use a lot in culture.
CB: Yeah, so the person that lights the match and walks away? Right.
JO: Thinking about Aries and Leo too, thinking back to the beginning of this episode, the one-upping concept with Leo, I think with fire signs there’s a competitive spirit in general or there can be, but I think more so with Aries being ruled by Mars rather than the Sun. This is of course biased because it’s through the lens of my personal experience. But I’ve never been very competitive. I actually really hate competition, but it doesn’t mean I don’t like being the best at things or there’s not a sense of striving.
I think we can look at Mars’s rulership of Aries versus the Sun’s rulership of Leo and we can see a fighting spirit with both. We really see selfhood and authenticity anchored with Leo to where it’s like I want to be my best self, I want to be better than I was yesterday or what have you versus I want to be better than you, or I’ve singled you out or targeted you as my opponent, which is a very martial quality and feels even more cardinal as well contrasting those two fire signs. So that’s something to think about.
CB: Yeah, one of the phrases that goes to what you’re saying with Leo here I think is when we say that that person has heart or they’re like, “You’ve got the heart, kid,” that phrase I think that’s a very Leo type phrase in terms of what you’re describing here.
JO: Yeah, yeah.
NDB: Yeah, everything you do you do with your fullest every fiber of your being so to speak. That’s it. All in. All in.
JO: Say it with your chest is another very Leo way of behaving.
NDB: As I’ve explained to friends at times or in my apologies, anything I do I overdo.
CB: Yeah, and encourage is another good one then is related to that in terms of having heart or something like that versus more of a combative impulse like the impulse to win over somebody else that comes with Mars and Aries to some extent. Okay. Then what is the contrast? We’re contrasting that short like lighting the match or lighting the bomb and then walking away with Aries with the fixed fieriness of the Leo and using that metaphor more of like a bonfire, which is something that you’d liked it. It might take a while to start. Fixed signs are notoriously slow to get going. They have a hard time initiating things. But once started, they stay in place and they have this sense of stability and permanence and something that lasts for quite a while, which can sometimes mean they can be fixed in their ways or have a resistance to change, in some sense, can be another fixed sign quality that we saw, especially in Taurus, that was major in Taurus. But that can be a Leo thing as well.
JO: Yeah, yeah, definitely. Thinking about the bonfire analogy too, I think about how it may take a while to get started. But once that thing’s going, good luck getting the embers to go out for days and days, even if it’s not roaring anymore. But there’s also this idea of the fire needing to be fed. I think we see that with this desire for recognition and sometimes validation with Leo. To keep the fire going, it needs fuel. And with Sagittarius if we’re sticking with these very literal fire analogies, the fire just moves. The fire just finds fuel and explorers. There’s this very mutable exploratory kind of quality with Sagittarius that is different than Leo. Leo would rather provide the warmth and draw things to it rather than go outward and seek.
Because change can be very uncomfortable for fixed signs. Even the fixed fire signs can confirm love to have Uranus squaring all my Leo planets right now. That’s another contrast I think about with these fire signs is the outward-moving, very variety, and option-oriented feeling of Sagittarius as a fire sign.
NDB: Yeah, that’s very well put.
CB: Yeah, and fire rises upwards. That’s one of its qualities in ancient cosmology that fire is set to rise up to the highest position in the cosmos and so, you get that quality with all the fire signs but in particular Leo of just wanting to rise to the top of something or be at the top of something. With Sagittarius being Jupiter ruled, there is though much more of an expansive maybe far seeing or far-reaching quality that comes with that as a contrast maybe a little bit more compared to Leo.
NDB: Yeah, Jupiter is supposed to be infinite really. It takes a Saturn transit to stop it, otherwise it just keeps going.
CB: Right. Well, that’s funny because Saturn transits don’t affect Leos is what I’ve heard.
JO: That’s not true.
CB: No, it’s not.
NDB: Are you kidding me? Are you kidding me?
CB: Funny actually I think Saturn transits may be the hardest for Leos because one of the things that Saturn brings is age and time and the notion that-
NDB: And humility. It’s certainly not about you.
CB: Right, yeah. Or that you are like a fixed or finite resource. Sometimes that ties into something other things like vanity and things like that like age being a limiting and a humbling factor but also, something that can change so that you’re not always going to be, the notion that you might not always be as good as you were earlier and some of that longingness for the youthful quality when the fire was still burning at its brightest or something like that is something that’s interesting sometimes with Leos and Saturn transits.
NDB: It’s so unambiguous in my life that the worst times were when Saturn was in Leo and they initiated longer term bad times and that the greatest times of my life have been Saturn in Aquarius. In fact, I’m personally campaigning for Saturn to never leave Aquarius ever. Just be there, guys. Stay. Stop moving.
JO: I’d like a small break. A small break, please.
CB: A small break. We’ve got just until March Saturn goes into Pisces and I’m throwing a big party. That’s good. Is there anything else we should say about the contrast between those two fire signs of Leo and Sagittarius or even of all of the fire signs that this really brings up to help us clarify some of the meanings of Leo?
NDB: I think Jo did it beautifully. I don’t have much to add. I can only think of more of personal examples, but I think she nailed it. There’s no need to-
CB: Can you think of any chart examples of people that have let’s say Leo and Sagittarius placements?
NDB: Well, I think the great team of Leo and Sagittarius that I think of is Mick Jagger and Keith Richards, who they really complete each other. Mick Jagger being the Leo just the Mr. show off rockstar extraordinaire, and then Keith Richards being this almost mystical figure. The biggest meme in the world is the fact that he’s so, so old but just keeps going, right? I mean, those are all those jokes. You see there’s like a picture of him teaching a little boy guitar and it’s like this is Keith Richards teaching Willie Nelson how to play a guitar, jokes like that. There’s all these…
Another one I saw that picture of rockstars when they were kids, it’s like Janis Joplin, Jim Morrison, whoever, and they’re all really little kids. Then there’s a picture of Keith Richards and he’s like he is today. That’s like-
CB: Yeah, so forever young or forever youthful and also like really grasping on to the youth in some ways and not letting it go.
NDB: Well, yeah, there was even a politician I forget who died about 10 years ago and the dying words of this man was, “I can’t believe Keith Richards is going to outlive me.” Imagine those are your last words on Earth. He does seem to have this mystical streak in him. It’s strange. And just his approach to music, his counterbalance to Mick Jagger. The way they form this unit I think really embodies that Leo-Sagittarius teamwork very well.
CB: Yeah, Leo-Sagittarius combinations bring in the optimism as well I think that really helps out like a boundless optimism. Because I was talking to a Sagittarius rising recently and they were very much into partially the power of positive thinking and the positive thinking of saying yes to things and thinking optimistically, actually having an impact and changing things and leading to better outcomes than the more Saturnian approach of thinking about the worst-case scenario or thinking about how things could fall apart or something like that.
NDB: Very true.
JO: I can’t think of any celebrity Leo-Sagittarius synastry examples, but I will say like as a Leo with Leo rising, there’s nothing like that fire synastry like Sag risings or Sag Moon or even Aries placements. There’s something so dynamic about that kind of synastry where it can just build on itself and we can feed off each other. It’s some of the most fun I’ve had. I’ve been at astrology conferences with fire synastry buddies, so there’s something pretty magical about it.
NDB: Yeah, I would attest in life so many of those special friendships, yeah, sure.
CB: One of the ones that’s really funny like that actually is actually Donald Trump who wasn’t there a phrase at one point of just like constantly winning or of that… Because the power of positive thinking is actually really core thing for him that runs in his family that you have to be constantly winning and being a winner is super important. He has that combination of the Leo rising in Mars and Leo, but also a Full Moon eclipse in Sagittarius at the same time. So he has a bit of that energy where we are focusing on that manifesting, the optimism of the positive thinking and sometimes just running purely on that is part of the program I guess for better or worse. All right, so that’s pretty good with the fire signs. Some other contrasts are the modalities?
NDB: Yeah, the fixed thing is a big one.
CB: Yeah, so contrasting the four fixed signs, which are Taurus… Let me make sure to share this. Four fixed signs are Taurus, Leo, Scorpio and Aquarius. We’ve talked already a lot about Leo and Aquarius. We’ve talked a little bit about Taurus, but maybe that’s one we could spend a little bit more time on since Leo is like the second fixed sign and we were first introduced to the fixed energy with Taurus, and arguably I think Taurus is like the most fixed of the fixed signs. Because it’s not just a fixed sign, but it’s also an Earth sign. Earth tends to fall down in the ancient cosmological scheme, the element of Earth falls down to the very bottom of the cosmos where it rests and stays fixed in place in some sense, as opposed to like water that moves around a bit on top of Earth or air that moves around more or fire that rises all the way up to the top of the cosmos.
NDB: Yeah, Earth has a density to it and you think of Taurus having a density to it that is not quite equaled by the other fixed signs.
CB: So Leo by contrast is a little bit less fixed because it’s fire, it’s like a fiery sign. So it has a little bit more flexibility to some extent, but I think they do share some things in common in terms of routines potentially or once they find something that they like potentially that they like really like that thing perhaps or having very defined likes and dislikes might be something that Taurus and Leo share in common.
NDB: Yeah, it’s hard for me to… I have a Taurus Moon so it’s sometimes hard for me to split that, knock down the middle if you will. But I’m definitely very particular of my tastes, whether it’s my Taurus stellium or my Leo stellium.
CB: Yeah, being particular in their tastes. That’s a good one.
JO: Yeah, I think about fixed signs with the concept of the phrase as long as I have X, I’ll be okay or something. This idea of like as long as this doesn’t change, I’ve got this down, I’ll be fine. With Taurus being an Earth sign, I think about this focus on the material or physical world. So it’s like as long as I have a roof over my head or this material security or my creature comforts, what have you, I’ll be okay. And with Leo-
NDB: I’m sorry, I just wanted to interject, my sexual pleasures.
CB: Sexual or sensible things, yeah.
JO: Yeah, that very sense-based kind of stuff like food or your cozy [inaudible] because it’s hot.
NDB: And just the feeling of fabric or the feeling of skin, it’s all that stuff.
JO: Yeah, yeah. With Leo, I think about the element of fire and how it’s related to spirit rising the highest. With Leo, I suppose the phrase might be something like as long as I have myself, I’ll be okay or I’ll be okay, as long as I know who I am and I can stay true to that.
NDB: As long as I have my friends.
JO: Right, right, and who are your friends, but people who can see you for who you really are and really understand you and feed that fire. I suppose we could do that with all the fixed signs, but there is something… I think this was in Camille’s notes as well and I really liked this, the thing that the fixed fire sign wants to keep fixed or maintain is identity, which we’re back where we started with the Sun words and these Leo words. There’s this idea that as long as you can be true to yourself, you can make it through anything versus as long as I have my stuff or the stuff I like or need, I have my needs met with that fixed Earth sign with Taurus.
CB: I was thinking of the phrase as long as I have my makeup for Leo would be like I could leave. That was the first thing that came to mind. But that’s part of sometimes people’s sense of identity and presentation and things like that or other versions of that as long as I have my fabulousness, my sense of style, my presentation. Or an artist maybe might say, as long as I can do my art, as long as I can continue doing my painting or what have you, then whatever.
JO: Right, that outlet for expression. It’s interesting that you bring up makeup though, because me being a cringy Leo, I did beauty blogging for a while. For me, it was like a creative outlet with just like using myself as a canvas. But the whole reason I got into it is because I wanted to teach people how to use makeup. Because there’s this idea of makeup augmenting the way you look or giving you the opportunity to curate what you look like outwardly to match how you feel inwardly. I was really interested in how I could help to give people the tools to do that or make it seem more accessible if it seemed complicated, and I eventually stopped. It was it was right when Instagram influencer culture was getting big and I just wasn’t interested in any of that. I wanted to make tutorials.
You brought up makeup and I thought about that as even a way to curate the appearance as a form of creative expression and as a way to potentially really boost that authenticity and have a feeling of coherence between inner and outer and what is shared or what is performed.
NDB: I think there’s a blanket statement I can take from what both of you are saying is I think there’s value in one’s own good taste, which has to do with the self-presentation. But indeed, if it’s the makeup, it’s like your presentation has value or if you’re an artist like Chris was saying it’s like what you’re contributing to art has this value is good. So yeah, there’s this just larger tent over all of this, which is the value of this again, the solar choices like my decision to match Jo in outfit today, that kind of thing.
CB: I wore a different shirt today, too. I’m wearing a gray shirt today, if anybody didn’t notice. I thought I’d get a little wild and get a little flamboyant for this episode.
NDB: Otherwise known as the Scorpio uniform.
CB: Yeah, yeah. I’m going to go back to black for the next 300 episodes, but I thought I would do something special today.
NDB: Thanks for lightening up the Leo episode, Chris.
CB: Thank you. I do what I can. Having zero planets in Leo, just my Descendant so I import Leos into my life to play that outside both of you wearing the red T-shirts today. Yeah. I like what you’re saying, Jo. I was writing it down. The ability to curate and to shape one’s presentation as being an important part of Leo, that seems really central or really critical here because it touches on a few things that we’ve gone through during the course of this discussion. Yeah.
All right, so that’s Taurus. Is there anything else with Taurus versus Leo contrasts that are either similarities or contrast between the two of them towards being- Taurus was more about we’re talking about like sensual or physical pleasures like food or comforts or things of enjoyment and things like that. We get some of that with Leo of things of enjoyment but having enjoyment more through expression and through the process of creation and things like that it seems like and through emitting something into the world.
JO: I feel like there could be a connection like a glamour and luxury thing with both Taurus and Leo. I thought about this when I was writing Moon sign compatibility for the CUSP app last year. Because Taurus is a Venusian sign and there is this idea around luxury and beauty and even glamour. But it gets filtered through more of again like a performative or expressive lens with Leo versus like an experiential lens with Taurus. I think we see fire in Earth there as well with fire being something that illuminates or lights up or shines out and Taurus being something that is really experienced through the senses, but I do think we can see a resonance there with those things.
CB: Yeah, of a focus on aesthetics and aesthetics qualities being important. All right, so that’s Taurus and Leo. Then moving on to the last one we haven’t talked about too much aside from some jokes, which was Leo and Scorpio as both fixed signs. Leo is a fixed fire sign. Scorpio on the other hand is a fixed water sign. What are some of the contrasts then that come up? Fixed water sign that’s ruled by Mars, so it’s a Mars sign but it’s like the more internalized version of the two Mars signs compared to Aries which is like the extroverted Mars sign. Scorpio is like the introverted Mars sign.
NDB: Yeah, this is a tough one out of the four. I can see Leo-Aquarius that that’s easy. Everything Jo was just saying about Leo and Taurus really stands up. But Scorpio is a little stranger, isn’t it?
CB: Yeah, so it’s like fixed water. One of the best ones I heard or ones I’m aware are the ice cube like there’s a great analogy for water. I don’t know where I first heard that.
NDB: You know what happens to ice cubes next to bonfires.
CB: I know you put them in a nice drink and then it becomes a fun relaxing party or something.
JO: Yeah, just a cocktail.
NDB: That’s what Scorpios are good for, keeping the iced tea nice and chill.
CB: No, well, that’s a really nice point because the Leos are warming up the ice cube I think because Leo can drag out a more introverted sign like a Scorpio or even a Taurus to some extent that might want to just stay home and relax. He was the one that might want to drag out their friends in order to be more social or have fun or to build connections and warm things up. That’s part of the contrast that makes them get along even though there’s a necessary, a natural tension there. But through that tension, it creates something that’s productive.
NDB: I think one thing that I think both Scorpios and Leos share is that going back to that sense of loyalty, there’s this particularized you got to be loyal to this. There’s a stand to take. You’re either on my team or you’re not.
JO: Yeah, I’m really glad… Go ahead.
NDB: No, no, no, this is just… I’m thinking out loud here. Go ahead.
JO: I was just going to say I’m really glad you brought that up because that was the very next thing I was going to bring up. As far as commonalities, there’s this idea of this loyalty. Because Scorpio being a water sign, it is a little bit more introverted rather than expressive or outward moving. So there’s this idea of privacy. There’s also this idea of an inner circle and if I have your back, you better have my back. There’s more of like a martial tone to it. Yeah, all that to say I totally agree with you, Nick. Very well said.
CB: When you’re talking about it makes me think of the king or the president versus their assassin or their spies that they send out and the need for the loyalty and the trust component but that also Mars component for Scorpio.
JO: Yeah, and we compared a little bit of Aries and Leo and this very forthright competitive Aries nature versus this, I want to be better than my past self-idea with Leo. We have another Mars ruled sign traditionally with Scorpio, but it’s much more strategic. And so, there I think is also this commonality between them or this resonance with this drive that’s very like comes from a very deep place. Whereas Scorpio might not be quite as forthright about it compared to a fire sign, but there’s this like deep drive. I think about Scorpio too as if we were going to use the little ad lib as long as I have X, I’ll be okay. With Scorpio I feel like it’s like as long as I have control, I’ll be okay. Because it is a water sign.
There is this feeling of needing to protect the emotional wellbeing and safety. But with Mars in charge, it’s like, “Okay, I got to have all my shit on lock. I have to keep all of it locked down and keep it just like this so I can feel okay.” That’s something I think about too.
NDB: Yeah, I do think Leo wants control for control. I think Scorpio wants control for security. There’s more of a motivation for wanting control with Scorpio as opposed to Leo just wants control that’s for its own sake.
CB: Leo wants to lead and be in charge and be at the forefront or the head of things whereas Scorpio wants to protect itself and like-
NDB: And makes sure no one else can overcome it.
CB: Yeah, to ward off enemies or threats or something like that. Yeah. I was trying to think of people with Scorpio-Leo contrasts. One of the ones that always comes to mind, even though we don’t know her birth time famously and there’s multiple birth times, but Hillary Clinton has the Sun and Venus and Mercury and the South Node in Scorpio, and then Saturn and Pluto and Mars in Leo. So that’s an interesting example of that. I think there’s like others who were born around her timeframe, but I forget who they were at the moment. Do you remember, Austin, that have that same contrast?
NDB: Austin? Oh, my God. How dare you? Did you just call me Austin?
CB: Did I? Sorry, it’s been like 200 episodes [inaudible].
NDB: Let me get my tobacco a second, hold on. No. Am I wrong? Is Prince Charles not born the same time as Hillary Clinton? I think so.
CB: No, you’re right. He’s like a Leo rising with Sun in Scorpio.
NDB: Yeah, he’s definitely a Scorpio. I’m thinking he’s a ’47 Scorpio. Or is he a ’48 Scorpio? I might be wrong there. He might be a ’48 Scorpio. I’m drawing a blank for some reason. I think the Queen got married in ’47 then he was born in ’48. Yeah, he’s ’48. I’m sorry. I’m sorry.
CB: He’s got a rising Sun in Scorpio.
NDB: Yeah, I was confusing his birth with the Queen’s wedding, which was a year earlier. Thankfully Britain can sleep safe knowing their Queen was a virgin until she got married. Yeah, he is still a Scorpio with the Leo rising, which is funny. He reminds me of another Scorpio British Royal which was King Edward VII.
CB: Everybody knows about King Edward VII.
NDB: He was he was the son of Queen Victoria. So like Charles, he went into old age and he’s got one job, which is to replace his mother who never dies. Queen Victoria also lived very, very old. So you just have this life of waiting to be king and it never happens. With Edward it did happen, but he was past his 60s and he was already ill health. I don’t know. It’s just that that not being king, but waiting and expecting, literally spending a lifetime waiting to do your job.
CB: That’s really funny. Okay, that’s obviously that’s Charles as well. I always use him as an example of somebody with the ruler of the Ascendant in the 4th house. In his instance, it’s Leo rising with the Sun ruling the Ascendant and Scorpio in the 4th house and literally that’s the only thing he’s doing. But certainly, a big part of his biography is that he was going to become king once his mother died, then his mother has now become the longest reigning monarch in world history. So that is a central thing in his biography, and where he could get to this point where it’s possible that she could outlive him in which case he would never become king, which is an interesting dynamic. It’s a little interesting you bring out that contrast, which I’d never thought about before. Of course, with Hillary Clinton, we had an instance where it was like she was waiting to become president or on the track to become president.
NDB: That’s a great point that yeah, she’s the Prince Charles of the USA.
CB: Yeah, but then it never quite happened. Buy yeah, we don’t know her birth time, but one of the versions was Scorpio rising with the Leo stuff up in the 10th house, which is an interesting inversion of the Prince Charles thing. All right, so that’s pretty good. Are there any other things? Scorpio is more emotional. One of the interesting contrasts with both Scorpio and Aquarius versus Leo, they’re both ruled by malefics by either like Mars or Saturn and a tendency more for the darker or more like goth or even like emo type tendencies with Scorpio and Aquarius versus Leo looks at that with a little bit of, I don’t want to say disdain, but a little bit of bewilderment in terms of the focus in times on the darker side of life.
NDB: You need a little color in that, honey. You need some orange to go with all that black. Yeah.
CB: Yeah, need to lighten up a little bit I think Leo [inaudible]. So that’s an interesting contrast there between those two as well compared to Leo that Leo has a lighter not just aesthetic, both visually, but also mentally in some sense.
NDB: Leo’s can do goth, but it’s all cosplay. It’s a night out and then we go back to our shiny selves.
CB: Yeah, that’s basically what Halloween is essentially, it’s like one day a year. All right, so that’s the contrast with the quadruplicities, the modalities. Are there any other contrasts that might be worth doing? There’s just a few other signs that we haven’t talked about. We talked about the similarities between the youthfulness to some extent between Gemini and Leo. Libra and Leo is one we haven’t talked about, which is the other sextile. Gemini is a sextile from Leo and then Libra is the other sextile from Leo. Similar focus I want to say on things like aesthetics or fashion, somebody recently asked me to do an episode on astrology and fashion. I don’t actually know anybody that specializes in that offhand so I couldn’t say I could do that right away.
NDB: I think I might know an astrologer who used to do beauty blogging.
CB: Okay. Yeah, yeah, I mean that could be it. But I think of the Leo and Libra dynamic as being very much more aesthetically focused as a pair of signs.
NDB: Yeah, and also people focused. I think like Gemini, Libra, Leo and like any of the other signs that come to mind have a real… There have to be other people. Leo needs an audience, Gemini needs someone to talk to, and Libra needs someone to look at. It’s more of an imperative with those three signs and any of the others that come to mind.
JO: Yeah, I’m glad you brought that up. One thing I think about a lot is how with Libra rising charts, with whole sign houses at least Leo is placed in the 11th. There’s this idea of the house that the Sun rules and a chart being somehow central to selfhood and that kind of stuff for the self-realization process. And so, with Libra rising, with Libra being so prominent, the house of groups and social dynamics and peers and allies is really highlighted. Then with Leo rising charts, we have Libra in the third. So there’s this other house that is sometimes other people related when it comes to like siblings, neighbors, people who feel like siblings, and just this idea of community and this idea of expression or speaking, communicating those kinds of things. So there’s this real strong like air-fire social connection that I think those two signs have.
CB: I’m like quickly trying to search through my Libra rising examples for something to connect to what you’re saying. One of the funny ones I just found was the famous Libra rising with Saturn and Leo was Hitler actually. So that’s a-
JO: Just super social together.
CB: Yeah, exactly. There’s that. Do you guys either of you have any Libra rising with Leo placements that come to mind thinking about that?
NDB: Bill Clinton.
CB: Yeah, Bill Clinton was major. That’s where his two stelliums were.
NDB: That’s your poster boy right there for those two signs.
CB: Let me find his chart. Could you expand on that line looking for his chart?
NDB: Sure. Yeah, he’s a Libra rising. He’s got Mars and Neptune on the Ascendant. He’s got Venus there too and Jupiter. Yeah, you should get them on for your Libra episode, Chris. I’m sure his schedule is wide open. Yeah, he’s quite the classic.
CB: How does that connect again, just refresh me on what Jo you’re just saying?
JO: This idea of the 11th house being really highlighted by the Sun’s rulership of the 11th house and Libra rising charts. With Bill Clinton’s chart especially, you have the Sun and Leo as the ruler of the 11th. You have Venus in Libra as ruler of the 1st. So you have these really, really strong signatures with both. Then we see someone who is extremely charismatic like the cool candidate as you were saying, Nick, just all around really likable person giving off a feeling of being a very trustable person in some ways. Those signatures highlighted in those places speaks to some things I was talking about.
CB: All right. So that’s pretty good for filling that out for Leo and Libra. The only other two signs we haven’t talked about at all in this episode and they are the signs that are in aversion to Leo, to the other signs that are in aversion besides Cancer and Virgo, which are a little bit more connected. Because those are the signs that immediately precede or follow after Leo. But with Capricorn and Pisces, we get ones that just have no aspect and that don’t share any of the basic same qualities. Because for example, Leo is a fixed fire sign ruled by the Sun and it’s a masculine sign or diurnal sign whereas Capricorn is a cardinal Earth feminine/nocturnal sign, or Pisces is a mutable water feminine/nocturnal sign. How does Leo relate or not related, I guess primarily not relate to or what are the incongruencies between Leo and Capricorn?
NDB: Well, what we were saying earlier about control with Leo and Scorpio and I pointed out Scorpio has the motivation of security whereas Leo just has its own motivation for wanting the power, wanting to be in charge. Capricorn has some of that too. Capricorn doesn’t want power, but it wants to- Leo just presumes it. But with Capricorn, it’s always about the battle. It’s not about being on top of the mountain. It’s about climbing the mountain to get to the top. But there is that still… The end goal is quite similar. It’s just the means by which one assumes that power and what that power means.
A Leo might be a monarch and all ruling dictator, a Capricorn is more of a president or prime minister or someone who’s in charge, but it’s less for show and more for to actually run things like actually have things in operation and be in control of that, of their functionality.
JO: Yeah. When you were speaking, I was thinking of this idea of like self-sovereignty and being beholden only to oneself. That’s a very Leo idea, very solar idea. When I think of Capricorn, I think of a feeling of obligation or responsibility or duty to a preexisting structure that has perhaps proved its usefulness by its longevity, or has just outlived its usefulness. It could really go either way. But I think there’s kind of that disconnect there where it’s like, well, I’m responsible to this structure or thing or way of doing things because that’s the tradition or that’s the way it is. Then there’s like this creative, self-directed impulse with Leo where it’s like, no, I do it my way because I am entitled to do that. Because I’m self-sovereign. I am my own… I’m the Nobel in my own kingdom, that type of idea. I think there’s that disconnect.
NDB: Yeah, I’ve always talked about Uranus when it travels through a sign, when it transits through a sign that it perverts the values associated with that sign. The last time Uranus was in Capricorn at the very end of the ’80s and the early ’90s, the big pop culture was taken over by the lower order, if you will. MTV was subverted. Suddenly, the buzzword for culture in those days was DIY. It was literally uncool for a musician to be on a corporate label, which is like you’re saying, that’s what Capricorn typically would want. Of course, you would want to be on a Capricorn label, but Uranus goes into Capricorn and suddenly the whole thing is, things are supposed to be homemade and deliberately unprofessional without the gloss of officially produced material.
I think that speaks to what you’re talking about, Jo, that thing that Capricorn wants is the facade. It’s a different facade than Leo, but I think they both have a need for a facade of some way. Leos might be more genuine even when it is a façade. But with Capricorn, that’s an issue as well.
CB: One of the things that Capricorn versus Leo version makes me think of is I was watching this interview recently with this billionaire Kevin O’Leary, who was like one of the guys who became famous from the Shark Tank, if you get to watch that show.
I think he’s Canadian [inaudible]. Yeah, he was born in Montreal where you’re from. He was telling the story about how when he grew up his mother helped him get through college and then the day he graduated, she was like, “I have a present for you.” And he was like, “What is it?” She’s like, “You’re cut off. Now that you’re graduated, you’re no longer my problem. You have to learn how to swim and figure out how to get by on your own. All financial support is cut off.” He said that she had a specific phrase or she had a specific phrase where she said something like the dead bird under the nest never learns how to fly. It’s a very like Capricorn thing.
He later, eventually after struggling a little bit, got into business and became successful and became a billionaire, became wildly successful climbing up the corporate ladder. Then he had a family and he decided when his kids were like three or four that he was going to do the same thing. And so, he told his story about how he was going to create… He created a trust for them when they were three or four that would ensure that they were taken care of if something happened to them, if he and his wife died or passed away before they finished college, but that as soon as they turned 25 or something the trust would no longer give any money and all financial support would be cut off.
So he told the story about one day his son was in high school and he was not doing very well and he was fucking around and his son came to him one day and said, “All my friends are going to get their trusts when they’re like 20 or something like that. When does mine mature? When do I receive it? He said, “Well actually, if you never go to college, you get no money. You’re going to be cut off financially in just a few years here.” Then his son really was shaken up by that and turned his life around and then went to college and then eventually became successful and is now working at like Tesla or something like that.
There’s something about that story that reminds me of the Capricorn-Leo dynamic. Because one of the things about Leo is that it sometimes makes me think of inheritance and lineage and inheriting from a lineage or having like a famous background or like a wealthy background or something like that. Sometimes people or kids that grow up within that context of having wealthy or famous parents or something like that and then inheriting a little bit of that in some way or having it passed on to them in some sense through that fixity of the sign, versus Capricorn is much more like self-determined and has to climb the ladder has to do things the hard way and sometimes have to fall and then get back up and things like that, and suffer hardship in order to persevere and eventually become stronger.
Yeah, it makes me think about that dynamic. Because it is not a comfortable dynamic at all between those two signs. It could also end spectacularly in failure. There’s some scenario or version of that story where it doesn’t go well. But in that instance, it went well. So sometimes it can still be productive, even if it’s not easy or even if it’s harsh.
JO: Yeah, it reminds me of what you were saying, Chris, about this idea of the power of positive thinking. With Capricorn it’s like the power of hard work or putting in the hours or the grind or something like that like the elbow grease.
CB: Yeah, or the power of fearing poverty and abject failure or dying or something due to lack of material support and sustenance. That can motivate you a little bit to get your stuff together sometimes. Yeah.
NDB: I can attest. As someone married to a Capricorn, I’ve never seen a harder working human being in my life. It’s insane anyway.
CB: Right. So it’s interesting that being a motivating factor versus for Leo and maybe like fame or recognition being a motivating factor, or let’s say, being recognized for one’s inherent traits, one’s inherent positive traits that the Leo wants to be able to shine, but to be recognized and be pointed out is like you’re notable and you’re special for something, for this basically.
JO: And to be remembered and to leave a legacy. You mentioned the lineage and things like that. I think and even in my client work, I’ve particularly with 12 housework, but a lot of Leo deep questions are like, what kind of legacy will I leave? What will I leave behind? How will I be remembered? And it’s like that becomes the lineage that other people rise out of and things like that.
CB: I love that fixed fire and the legacy of passing on a flame or a torch that is never extinguished.
NDB: Like the Olympic torch kind of thing.
CB: Yeah, yeah, so family legacies. Then with Leo, family legacies can sometimes be like a positive thing. There can be positive versions of that or there can be negative versions of that as well, where there’s bad things passed on as part of that family lineage or family legacy. All right. The very last contrast that we haven’t done yet is Leo versus Pisces. Pisces is a water sign, mutable and feminine or nocturnal. What are some of the keywords that come up for either of you when you’re thinking about especially the incongruencies between those two signs? Pisces is very flexible, probably the most flexible I would say of the mutable signs, which are themselves already flexible. Because it’s like a mutable water sign and water itself conforms to its surroundings basically.
NDB: Yeah, born to change as opposed to fixed signs which are born to never change.
JO: Yeah. With Pisces, I often think about this idea of feeling the inherent connection between everything, the coherence and the interconnection, the manifestation of Jupiter ruling a water sign, a mutable water sign. That really displaces this whole big deal placed on selfhood and things when it’s like oh, we are all one and you are me and I am you. Leo is like, what? What do you mean? Where are the boundaries?
NDB: If that’s true, how am I going to be worshipped? There is that one.
JO: Right, there can be kind of a feeling of like… I think when Leo loses touch with that, I want that certainty about who they are. It can feel very like lost at sea. So I feel like Pisces can feel like an environment that is very adrift and devoid of reference points to Leo placements. Again, my Leo rising bias, but Pisces in general is in an 8th house relationship to Leo. I think about that a lot in terms of the idea of the 8th house having sometimes something to do with those really deep, vulnerable, intimate parts of relationships like trustful relationships where there is betrayal possible, there’s fear and paranoia around that all these 8th house things.
And so, I think that there can be a fear around this Pisces idea of so much connection, so much interconnection. Because it’s one thing for people to see you for who you are or for who you’re to be perceived if you are in the spotlight somehow or in a position of leadership. But it’s another to really share that vulnerable intimate space with someone. I think that can bring up again to some of that fear or anxiety or doubt with Leo. Like, if someone sees the whole of me, what are they going to see? Will they accept it? The connective qualities I feel can be tough for Leo or feel a little sticky where there’s not enough boundary or separation or distinction, I think is a better word.
CB: I think Leo has a workaround for that though, which is developing a messianic complex where… I was looking at the definition really quickly and it says a Messiah Complex, alternatively a Christ complex or savior complex is a state of mind in which an individual holds the belief that they are destined to become a savior today or the near future. The term can also refer to a state of mind in which an individual believes that they are responsible for saving or assisting others. So maybe the like boundlessness and the connectedness it all works out as long as you’re the central one leading that whole thing.
NDB: David Koresh was the Leo. I think the distinction was [crosstalk]. David Koresh, he was the… You guys are so young. He was the leader of this cult in Waco, Texas called the Branch Davidians. It was this compound with lots of adults and kids, a few 100 people. The government, this is right when Clinton became president. It’s one of the first things that I was… It was the Bay of Pigs to like… What the Bay of Pigs was to JFK, the Waco thing was to Bill Clinton where there were reports of child abuse and unregistered weapons, and so government troops went in.
CB: We don’t need a whole breakdown of the Waco. He was a cult leader.
NDB: He was a cult leader and wound up burning down his whole… His thing was burned down and all these people were killed. He was super messianic. What I was trying to say, short version, Leos think they’re the Messiah. Pisces actually are the Messiah. Jesus was a Pisces.
CB: Maybe hypothetically he could have been.
NDB: Well, in the sense that the Pisces is supposed to be this selfless individual, Leo could only wish to be what the Pisces actually is, although the Pisces would never do it for the Leo motivation to have the adoration or what have you. There’s a little something in that.
CB: Yeah, you’re right. Because part of his message was things like feed the poor, give all your money and things like that.
NDB: Yeah, it’s always this whole… I’m sorry. I know this is probably the first time in your podcast someone brings up the dreaded phrase Age of Aquarius. But the Age of Pisces is the Christian age, right? That’s the whole reason we have these… Pisces is often associated with the age of Christianity and all that stuff.
CB: Yeah, or all this speculation, there’s been hundreds of speculative charts, but one of the ones historically people have often wondered about was there’s a Jupiter-Saturn conjunction in Pisces sometimes not long before the hypothetical historical figure of Jesus may have been born.
NDB: There’s that, but I mean the symbol of the fishes has always been associated with Christianity. Pisces has always had a certain affinity with that religion as I’ve understood it. Mind you, what I understand about Christianity is about this much, but that’s one of the things that’s been imparted to me.
CB: Yeah, but that’s a good contrast then the contrast between like of let’s say a spiritual leader like that on the one hand having a spiritual message or something like that, which is Pisces of helpfulness and wanting to redeem or somehow raise up people that are in bad shape versus Leo and the desire to be the center of something or in the limelight and the tension between those two things because they’re not super compatible, but the way that they can sometimes get reconciled is by having somebody that’s at the center of some larger thing like that, which can sometimes go well, other times not so well if you end up in a cold tighter situation.
NDB: Yeah. One word I think of with Pisces is selflessness. That’s just you could have the greatest, most generous Leo in the world, but they’ll never be selfless.
CB: There’s always going to be some 1% that’s a little bit… Okay. All right. Well, on that note, I think we’re getting towards the end of this discussion since we got in a solid two hours. I really hate to say this because I don’t want to go into anyone’s head. But I feel like this may be the best discussion I’ve had so far in the series. I’ve really enjoyed this with both of you today. So thank you both for joining me. This was awesome.
NDB: Thank you. Thank you.
JO: Thanks for having us, Chris.
NDB: I guess you’ll have to bring us on for the next seven signs.
CB: Right. Well, that’s what’s funny is this is like your fifth episode in a row during Leo season over the past month in a series, an era of the podcast that I’ve dubbed the De- Renaissance, the De-Renaissance.
NDB: That was very clever, the story.
CB: You know what sucked about that is I did that one day before and then all of a sudden, some singer I hadn’t heard of before drops an album named Renaissance right after that. And so, it got overshadowed a little bit my funny joke about-
NDB: Nobody can overshadow me.
CB: Yeah, right, not even not even Beyonce.
NDB: Beyonce can. Okay, let’s be real.
CB: Okay. I like that. It’s humility. That was good. It was a little
NDB: I do have four planets in Virgo, one more than Jo, which I envy so much.
CB: Speaking of humility, tell me about yourselves. Jo, what do you have going on? Where can people find out more information about you?
JO: You can find me everywhere online at Jo, Maker of Ways so jomakerofways.com. That’s my handle on Instagram and Twitter. I offer consultations. I launch my availability once a month, so that’ll be the fourth week of the month. I focus on narrative astrology or a story driven approach where there’s a lot of storytelling using traditional Hellenistic astrology as the building blocks for that. I have ended up specializing in the 12th house. So if you have a 12th house, whether or not it has planets in it, I would love to chat with you about it. That’s what I have going on right now.
CB: I like that. Anybody with the 12th house, check out Jo’s website, which I’ll put a link to in the description below this video on YouTube or on The Astrology Podcast website in the entry for this episode. Nick, what do you have going on? Where can people find out more information about you?
NDB: I can be found at nickdaganbestastrologer.com. Yeah, these days just I’m focused mainly on doing consultations. I’ve got some video and writing projects that I’m working on. As far as chart specialties, just whatever comes along I’ll talk about whatever house needs to be talked about.
CB: All right, cool. Sounds good. Well, like I said, links to all those websites in the description below this video or on the podcast website. Thank you both so much for joining me, this has been amazing and has been a great fifth episode in this series. We’ll see how the next episode goes. We’ll see if Virgos can top this. They’ve got a big, tall order to fill but we’ll see what happens.
NDB: Good luck.
CB: All right. We’ll see. We’ll see what happens. All right, cool. Well, thanks everyone for watching or listening to this episode of The Astrology Podcast and we’ll see you again next time.
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If you’d like to learn more about the approach to astrology that I outline on the podcast, then you should check out my book titled Hellenistic Astrology: The Study of Fate and Fortune, where I traced the origins of Western astrology and reconstructed the original system that was developed about 2000 years ago. In this book, I outline basic concepts but also take you into intermediate and advanced techniques for reading a birth chart, including some timing techniques. You can find out more about the book at hellenisticastrology.com/book. The book pairs very well with my online course on ancient astrology called the Hellenistic Astrology Course, which has over 100 hours of video lectures where I go into detail about teaching you how to read a birth chart, and showing hundreds of example charts in order to really demonstrate how the techniques work in practice. Find out more information about that at theastrologyschool.com.
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