Welcome to Chiria's Notebook!

This page has been updated on: April 1, 2005


Hi! I'm Chiria. That's Hindi for sparrow.

I first became a student and lover of astrology in 1968 when I was a young stay-at-home mother. Some friends from out of state visited us at our home and in a short time convinced me that it "worked." I haven’t heard from the friends for decades, but their gift remains with me. Before my introduction I thought that anyone who believed in such things was a bit pitiable. In college I’d been very political and believed anything smacking of metaphysics to be bogus. But astrology saved my sanity, as it brought me to an awareness of karma and the continual life of the soul, as well as a knowledge that the suffering and pleasure we experience here is not arbitrary or without a reason.

In the late ‘70s I took a class in Vedic Astrology, and since then that’s been what I practice. I have four children, and my favorite “subjects” or guinea pigs are my family members and friends. I jokingly say that I had children so I’d have more horoscopes to study. I use birth charts as tools to see what makes people tick, or why they tick the way they do. I compare astrology to music—there are a finite number of variables from which a seemingly infinite number of results are created.

Although I use the Vedic system, I include Uranus, Neptune, and Pluto when I draw up a chart. And I use the circular chart form. More than a completely traditional Hindu astrologer, I believe that the planets give us some leeway; that free will is there, but has limitations.

A little over a year ago my husband and I moved to the American southwest. I find it to be a very inspiring place. Along with astrology, I study the Enneagram. I write poetry and short articles and have ideas for children’s stories that may or may not get written some day. I'll be adding to my notebook on this site as inspiration strikes. Thanks for reading my thoughts. If you'd like to write to me, my e-mail address is chiria@npgcable.com

My Thoughts on Sidereal Aries

Aries is focused primarily on the self, on its own being. Others may impact these folks by making them angry, sad, happy, or amused, yet it doesn’t come naturally for Aries to relate to the “other” as an entity in its own right, but rather as an extension of its “self”.

This goes double when Venus is also in the sign. Make no mistake, this is not necessarily the possessiveness of the man who won’t let his wife visit her friend without him for fear she’ll get some notions of independence, or the woman who goes through her husband’s pockets to find evidence of an affair—although with the right (or wrong) aspects, these extreme cases can be true. The average Aries just doesn’t conceive of the “others” in his/her life as existing outside of the role they play in the life of himself.

Though they can be sympathetic, it’s not common for them to be empathetic. Of course, this depends on more than just the sun sign. Compromise is something that has to be worked on.

I strongly believe that the rulership of sidereal Aries belongs to Pluto along with Mars. Two of the most strongly Arian people I know have that planet on the ascendant as well as Sun in Aries. People who aren’t Aries, but have that planet rising and those with Sun/Pluto conjunctions in any sign can have the Arian quality of seeming to be universes unto themselves. Pluto, being the natural ruler of the first house sign, is the planet of being-ness, of birth and inception. It has to do with energy, or spirit, manifest as matter. Pluto is the energy of being, while Mars is the energy of doing.

My Thoughts on Sidereal Taurus

For some reason I have a hard time getting a grasp on how the Sun behaves in Taurus. Or why it behaves the way it does. Perhaps it’s because Sun and the lord of Taurus,Venus, aren’t in sync with each other, being mutual enemies in the Vedic system.

There is one thing that stands out, however, and that’s the changeability of Taurus’ moods. They can go from pleasant to angry in ten seconds flat. This must go with the symbolism of the bull, an animal that can be peacefully grazing in a pasture one minute and charging a perceived enemy the next. Taurus is the exaltation of the Moon, and the Moon has always symbolized change just like the Moon's phases constantly change throughout the month.

These fluctuations may not seem in keeping with the fixity of Taurus, but if there’s one thing that’s predictable about the people born under the sign, it’s that their moods can’t be predicted. To me Aries seems more predictable. Why? Because it’s owned by Pluto, ruler of static energy.

Taurus’ Venus (as opposed to Libra’s) relates to things, to aesthetics, to that which can be perceived by the senses. I know a lady with Sun and Venus in Taurus who makes beautiful quilts. She’s also a superb gardener and cook, both traits associated with the sign. A gentleman I once knew surrounded himself with books, but having a Venus/Saturn opposition, lost out on the aesthetic sense. He was a talented linguist, however, and remember, Taurus rules the voice.

Thoughts on Sidereal Gemini

I thought long and hard about what distinguishes Gemini from the other eleven signs of the Zodiac.  At last it occurred to me to list everyone I know personally who has Sun, Moon, or a stellium in that sign. Looking over this list I came to the conclusion that Gemini is the sign of the doer, or the utilizer.  Of course, we're all doers in some way or another, even if all we 'do' is watch TV and eat, but you could call Gemini the hobbyist.  These folks usually need interests or activities to occupy their hands, their minds, and their time.  Often (although not always) these interests are completely unrelated to their careers. Here are some examples:

I should mention that not only the sign Gemini, but a strong third house—either a stellium of planets there or the ruler being prominent—can bring the same results.  My angular third house ruler is conjunt my ascendant ruler.  A young man I know who is a graduate student with a full time job also sings and plays guitar in a rock band.  His third house ruler is right on the cusp of the tenth, but he has no planets in Gemini.

Thoughts on Sidereal Cancer

Cancer is the most subjective, and in some ways, the most childlike of the twelve signs. Those with strong placements here love to be the center of attention, therefore the sign is heavily represented among performing artists. Cancers can get their noses out of joint if they don’t get the notice and praise the desire. And, in less developed types, they may “get even” through subtle or not so subtle putdowns or by ignoring the ones by whom they feel slighted. Perhaps this is the “pincer action” of the crab. It’s as though their image of self” is built on others’ real or perceived opinions of them.

Strong Cancerian types are fun loving, dramatic, and enthusiastic. They seem to glow when there are people around them—and the more the merrier. They are often great party givers. One-on-one situations are less comfortable for them unless Venus is strong and well placed.

People with strong Cancer placements like to look good. Many of the women born under this sign will color their hair (usually to a lighter shade) and do not like to be seen without makeup. Image is important. As it’s the sign concerned with the principle of motherhood, Cancers can be compassionate and helpful, yet with a certain danger of falling into an “After All I’ve Done For You” mode. A well-balanced native may be a passionate advocate for those whose voices might not be heard, especially children. And speaking of children, Cancer women can be very intense where their own children are concerned, liking for them to be “the best”, as this reflects well on themselves.

Perhaps there are a disproportionate number of “stage mothers” born under this sign. If a water sign rises as well as there being a heavy placement here, the Cancer qualities are intensified. As with any Zodiacal sign, merely having the Sun there, especially if it’s not in a strong position, won’t give the most pronounced qualities. If Mercury is afflicted in Cancer there tends to be a certain haziness when it comes to “the facts”. What serves the self is presented as gospel. A certain very famous fellow comes to mind with that planet rising in Cancer along with Venus, Saturn, and Pluto. A war is being fought at the time of this writing because of erroneous information believed and disseminated by him.

Thoughts on Sidereal Leo

Unlike Cancers, Leos don’t rely on the reactions or opinions of others to have a feeling of self worth. Ruled by the Sun, which is the center of our solar system, Leos are the center of their own worlds. Even in an otherwise afflicted chart, a Leo Sun gives a sense of self. It’s not that they’re conceited, that distinction belongs to afflicted water signs or an unbalanced Jupiter, it’s that there’s a sense of I-am-ness, a strong inner core.

Leos, or those with powerful placements of the Sun, don’t go out to others, but others tend to gravitate to them. They don’t call you, you call them. If others do not gravitate to them, as in the case of a Leo with a powerful Saturn placement, it can make for a lonely person indeed, as no one is attempting to connect with anyone. Venus, being the planet of connections and one-on-one relationships, doesn’t do well in Leo as it tends to be too “I” centered, and Venus, by its very nature, is meant to be “other” centered. That’s why the Sun and Venus are mutual enemies in the Vedic system: the Sun is “I”, Venus is “You” (or how “I” relate to “You”).

Leo is the sign of expertise and those with heavy placements there (or a powerful angular Sun) usually excel at something. They are not “Jacks of All Trades”, but rather, “Masters of One”, and in this one they are perfectionistic. Perhaps this is why Tropical Virgos, most of whom are Sidereal Leos, have the reputation for being fussy and critical. They simply cannot stand to see the area in which they are experts maligned by errors and sloppiness.

A true Virgo (and I am one) will turn down the volume on the TV, straighten the crooked calendar on the wall, and erase that annoying tail of the letter Y left on the chalk board. But more about that next time. Also Leos, when called Virgos, are said to be shy. What appears to be shyness is usually just self-contained-ness. They do not have a strong need for reciprocity, give and take, or mutual back scratching. More than most they have what they need right there within themselves.

Thoughts on Sidereal Virgo

Virgo is the facilitator. Basically, unless Jupiter is strong, Virgo is perfectly willing to be a cog in the wheel. Virgos want to help the overall organism of which they're a part to thrive and succeed and are willing to serve in whatever ways that they're equipped to make that happen. Virgo and its corresponding sixth house have to do with service. Virgos often, though not always, work behind the scenes, much like the elves who made the shoes while the shoemaker slept.

Does that mean that Virgos are never in positions of power or prestige? Not at all. There have been Virgo presidents. But they still see that their mission is to serve. Jimmy Carter is a good example of someone who considers service to be of paramount importance. This has been especially evident since his presidential term ended. Is Virgo's service always for the good? I'm sure there have been Virgos in the Mafia, helping the mob to run smoothly.

Although tropical Virgo (most of which falls under Sidereal Leo) has the reputation for being perfectionistic, Sidereal Virgo is the sign that has the most to do with attention to detail. Leo, being ruled by the Sun, has to do with wholeness, and in that sense it has to do with perfectionism, as wholeness is perfect. Leo has to do with expertise, excellence, and mastery. Leos are units unto themselves. When many planets are in that sign, little outside of the self is needed.

Virgos, on the other hand, need to interact. They need to have a function as part of the whole. They do not feel whole by themselves. Without an "assignment" or a project, Virgo can feel useless. Virgo needs to feel a part of something larger than itself. While it's possible for Virgo to be generally messy and disorganized, just watch her take a damp rag to that speck of jam on the countertop, or go after the tail of the Y that didn't get erased from the blackboard, or straighten the slightly crooked mirror hanging on the wall. The focus is on the detail rather than the big picture.

Virgo is considered to be the most feminine of signs because it embodies the qualities that were traditionally (not now-a-days) considered to be ideal in women: modesty, helpfulness, and willingness to serve. It seems ironic then that Venus would be in its fall here. But Virgo, taken alone (especially if no planets are in Libra), is an impersonal and unemotional sign. Yes, it does like to interact and be a part of something larger than itself, but it doesn't particularly crave intimacy or prefer one person to another. That's why, with other influences, some people with Venus there can be promiscuous. It's not that they're more highly sexed than other people, it's just that A is just as good as B which is no better or no worse than C. In other words, there are no preferences or favorites.

Virgo can be a mechanical sign. (Was Spock a Virgo?) Skills come under that sign. That's why many Virgos can be adept at needlework, weaving, and other crafts. While Mercury as the ruler of Gemini has dominion over communication, Virgo's Mercury has rulership of handiwork, and technical abilities. One final thought on Virgo: because it's the sign of the servant, it can act servile. Unless Mars is strong and in a good sign Virgos can have a hard time confronting other people or speaking their minds. A Virgo may flatter someone at a social gathering and then go home and talk about what a jerk the person was. The result is that they may gain the reputation for being insincere and smarmy. It's very difficult for this sign to rock the boat.

....And a Note on Sidereal Venus and Scorpio

(This note appeared on the Yahoo Sidereal List in the context of a discussion about Venus, sidereal Libra and Scorpio.)

Based on the people I've known with heavy placements in sidereal Scorpio, these people are usually extroverted, active, restless and not in the least subtle. If Mercury is there, they can be brusque and tactless. I'm not basing this on anything theoretical or what I've read, but only on my own observations. And I don't see Venus as social, except that it has to do with one on one relationships. A strong Venus often indicates shyness. Mars is much more social, in the sense that it likes to be with groups. As I see it, Mars/Scorpio/8th house have to do with group energy.

Read more from Chiria on Libra through Pisces

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