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Learning About Your Sign
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Aries | Taurus | Gemini | Cancer | Leo | Virgo | Libra | Scorpio | Sagittarius | Capricorn | Aquarius | Pisces

This article was originally published in Dell Horoscope's Understanding Astrology.

The twelve signs of the natural zodiac are listed above.

Many people know that Aries is the first sign of the zodiac. Soon you will begin to associate each sign with its corresponding number relative to its position through the wheel of the zodiac. Now we are going to examine the primary meanings of each of the twelve signs. As you read through them, you will want to extract and remember some key words for each sign. If you know the birth-dates of close friends and family, think of them as you read through the sign descriptions and see how they fit the astrological profile presented here.

ARIES (March 21-April 20) in the celestial zodiac coincides with Spring on Earth. It is the time when seeds have been planted, the soil has been irrigated, and seedlings begin to form. Like these young plants beginning their cycle of growth, Aries begins the zodiac cycle. It is a young sign, the sign of beginnings. Some call it the "me first" sign, because the basic and primary energy is directed to the self. Aries likes to win, to place first, and come out smelling like a rose when the hue and cry of battle subsides. Aries loves the challenge and does not back away from a good fight. This sign is, in this respect, quite fearless. Aries is symbolized by the Ram, that creature that batters its head against anything in its way. Natives of this sign are noted for their aggressive ways, their leadership qualities, and a certain take-charge manner. Aries loves the contest while it's ongoing and has a real interest in the outcome, too! Frequently called the "pioneer sign" of the zodiac or the sign of new starts, Aries is competitive, forceful, strong, courageous, and constantly on-the-go, with a seemingly endless supply of energy. "I am," cries Aries, for in this sign is born the awareness of individuality.

Keywords:
Pioneering, assertive, active, enthusiastic, self-starter, leading, initiator, aggressive, confident, eager, proud.
Rules:
the head
Key phrase:
I AM

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TAURUS (April 21-May 21) is a much slower-moving sign than Aries. Natives of this sign are slow, steady, sensuous, earthy, and rather fixed in opinion. They need time to take in and digest new ideas and concepts. Symbolized by the Bull, Taurus cannot be pushed into activity unwillingly. There is an inherent attachment to comfort, security, and beauty that this sign feels, and in some cases this can turn into laziness, for Taurus does not possess the extroversion or energy highs of Aries. Taurus does relate to possessions, however, as this is the sign noted for money, possessions, and materialism. These are familiar and beloved values for Taurus, whose primary mission in life seems to be that of sorting out the distinction between inner spiritual values and the outer material world. Taurus likes beautiful things such as jewelry, artwork, well-furnished apartments, and stylish, attractive clothing. But mostly, Taurus just likes things, that which exists in the material world, because it can be touched and admired. "I have," cries Taurus, for this sign truly lives in the physical world of the senses.

Keywords:
Steadfast, loyal, possessive, stubborn, loves beauty, indulgent, stable, practical, physical, determined, artistic, placid, affectionate.
Rules:
the neck
Key phrase:
I HAVE

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GEMINI (May 22-June 21) is the sign of the Twins. It rules almost everything in the physical body of which there are two, primarily the lungs, arms, and shoulders. Gemini is the sign of duality. It is also the first human symbol that we encounter in the natural zodiac, for Aries and Taurus are beasts. Since this sign rules communication and the thought process, the implication is that thinking separates man from beast. Gemini lives in the world of ideas and has many interests. Noted for being quite adaptable to new ideas and for versatility, this sign is almost always on the go. Geminis can be quite witty and playful, too. Their many ideas are often expressed with a sense of humor. The nervous system is highly charged, and a case of nerves or anxiety often plagues Gemini until the mind is under control. Gemini seems to like just about everybody, and has some difficulties focusing on and maintaining only one partner in a romantic relationship. It's hard to pin this one down, for freedom of movement and life-style is a treasured value in the Gemini soul. "I think," says Gemini, juggling six ideas at once.

Keywords:
Inquisitive, charming, mental, versatile changeable, communicative, witty, restless, adaptable, nervous, sociable, expressive, fun.
Rules:
hands, arms, shoulders, lungs
Key phrase:
I THINK

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CANCER (June 22-July 23) has as its non-human symbol that crustacean of the sea, the slow-moving crab. The crab carries its home on its back and is therefore never far from home. Cancerians love their homes and are happiest when they are comfortably settled in for the night. Home, mother, the hearth, food—these are some of this emotional sign's values, for Cancer is insecure in some ways and the home is the protective shell that Cancer retreats to when the world and all its harshness are just too overwhelming. Cancer is the sign of the emotions, for like the tides of the ocean, this sign swells with highs and lows of emotional pulse. Cancer's lifelong search is for security, emotional and otherwise. Just as the crab might clamp its pincers to your toe and not let go, the native of this sign clings to people in his or her life. Cancerians are emotional, protective, nurturing, and affectionate—but they respond to life through their feelings. "I feel," is Cancer's song.

Keywords:
Sensitive, nurturing, tenacious, protective, emotional, intuitive, caring, moody, dependent, absorptive, domestic, maternal, enveloping, sheltering.
Rules:
the breasts, stomach
Key phrase:
I FEEL

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LEO (July 24-August 23) rules the Sun in the natural zodiac and is symbolized by the lion, the hot-blooded, fiery beast of the jungle. Like the sun, Leos want to shine, to be in the limelight, to be seen and heard. This is the sign of self-consciousness and ego, and it is not pure accident that many of these natives wind up in the theater and on movie screens, for Leo is the sign of entertainment. Leo's quest to be in the limelight grows out of a strength of will and the passion of the heart for self-recognition. Leos, when they have not gone the route of egomania, are courageous, noble, generous, and warmhearted with their loved ones. They have a great deal of loyalty to those whom they love and their affections are generally firm and lasting. When Leo gives his heart, he does not do so frivolously, but with passion, romance, and great ardor. "I will," is Leo's resounding cry to the world.

Keywords:
Confident, warmhearted, magnanimous, proud, creative, ardent, dramatic, enthusiastic, romantic, generous, loyal, self-centered, hearty, commanding, affectionate, noble, dignified.
Rules:
the heart, spine
Key phrase:
I WILL

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VIRGO (August 24-September 23) is called the sign of humble service, the sign of health and work and everyday responsibilities. Virgo looks at life and all its many parts with the motor blades of the mind, turning, analyzing, and assimilating experience. This is why Virgos are noted for their attention to detail, their ability to deal with routine and everyday matters. Virgo leads a search for perfection, oftentimes through service to others. This sign has a fondness for order and precision. As the second human symbol in the zodiac (Gemini is the first), the Virgin holding a sheaf of wheat, Virgo's mission is to find a way to be productive and meaningful in life. Because they have such a high inner moral sensibility, this sign frequently is labeled "critical" or "nitpicking." Their analyzing mind can send them into faultfinding, and Virgo faces a real lesson in conquering this trait and developing a more loving attitude. Virgo does this best through work and service to others, even pets. Virgos are basically nonaggressive, often shy, somewhat materialistic, and very down-to-earth as they go about their lives. It's true that many natives of this sign become very body-conscious or health-oriented, even hypochondriacal. Many frequent health-food stores and adhere to a vegetarian diet. "I analyze," Virgo says.

Keywords:
Analytical, precise, skeptical, finicky, critical, careful, detail-oriented, practical, diversified, mechanical, industrious, reserved, studious, assimilative, dedicated, moral, dependable, health-conscious.
Rules:
the intestines, assimilative processes
Key phrase:
I ANALYZE

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LIBRA (September 24-October 23) is first and foremost the sign of balance. It is the seventh sign, just past the midway mark in the zodiac. It is said that Libra sees both sides of an issue with equanimity, strives for justice, and often cannot choose a side or position in the ever-present quest for fairness. Libra begins the Autumn season, just as its opposite sign, Aries, begins with Spring. Our journey through the last six signs of the zodiac begins with Libra. These last six signs deal with the universal and entail the development of the soul. Libra begins this process because it marks the point where the personal—the I, the me, the self of Aries—becomes "we." Libra is the self in alliance with another or others; it is the sign of you and me, of partnerships and how we relate to others. The symbol for Libra, that of the scales of justice, is the only one in the zodiac that is neither human nor beast. It is, rather, an object, and each scale is evenly balanced, for when we come into relationships, we do so, ideally, on an even footing. With honor, self-respect, and mutual esteem they can keep the scales in balance. Lacking these attributes, they resort to tyranny, oppression, and enmity. Librans are diplomatic, relationship-oriented, aesthetic, friendly, and social-minded. They love being in groups and at parties, being on the go, and having the approval of all around them. Libra's message is "I balance," sometimes by trying to create harmony among friends.

Keywords:
Pleasant, charming, sociable, aesthetic, beauty- and luxury-loving, artistic, balancing, mediating, refined, cooperative, romantic, relationship-oriented, peacemaking.
Rules:
the kidneys, adrenal glands
Key phrase:
I BALANCE

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SCORPIO (October 24-November 23) is often referred to as the most complex of the twelve signs; it is called the mystery sign of the zodiac and is the one many astrologers find hardest to read for. The dark imagery of this sign's background is reflected in Scorpio's association with murky water— those still, muddy waters that do not allow one to see beneath the surface to what may lie below. This explains why perhaps the most often used adjective to describe one of this sign is "secretive." It's hard to get beneath the surface of a Scorpio, for they hide their emotions from others in a self-protective strategy designed to keep from surrendering control to another. Scorpio rules the eighth house of sex and death, indisputably two of life's most mystifying experiences. This sign has great passions that need regenerating. Scorpio is known for great strength, creativity, a surface reserve that when penetrated yields great treasures, a stubborn nature that can make for trouble in partnerships, a love for animals, and a keen interest in, or pursuit of, metaphysical knowledge. The regenerative aspect of Scorpio often expresses itself as the need to make changes that evolve the self to a higher plane. "I transform" is Scorpio's key word.

Keywords:
Intense, courageous, manipulative, emotional, persistent, penetrating, resourceful, passionate, secretive, magnetic, bold, regenerating, extreme, loyal, sarcastic, scientific, sensitive, probing, researcher.
Rules:
the sex organs, bladder
Key phrase:
I TRANSFORM

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SAGITTARIUS (November 23-December 21) is the sign of higher knowledge, understanding, and the superconscious mind. It also rules religion and higher education. In symbol form, this sign appears as the centaur, half-man and half-horse. The glyph for this fiery sign is represented by the archer aiming an arrow toward the heavens, his four-footed bestial frame supporting him. This is the sign of perception of the higher mind or the search for wisdom that comes from experience. "I perceive," says Sagittarius, and indeed, on a pictorial level, this sign suggests man's struggle to release himself from his lower (bestial) nature. Sagittarius is a forward-moving sign (like the arrow), interested in the future and what lies ahead. People born under this sign are friendly, breezy, optimistic, and independent. They hate being pinned down, and for this reason they experience some difficulties in relationships. Sagittarius is the sign of travel, and most natives of this sign have their own cars, for this allows them the mobility they long for. They are also fond of taking chances, for they are not noted for a predilection to approach life with caution. A certain aggressiveness is a part of their makeup, and they often have a fondness for athletics and sports. Sagittarians think, "I see."

Keywords:
Independent, enthusiastic, sporting, philosophical, explorative, happy-go-lucky, escapist, extravagant, athletic, foreign, forthright, outspoken, religious, wandering.
Rules:
the hips, thighs, liver
Key phrase:
I SEE

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CAPRICORN (December 22-January 20) is the sign of big business, large corporations, and serious pursuits. Capricorn is also associated with how others see you, your reputation, and your parents. This sign marks the time of the winter solstice, when the days start to grow colder—hence Capricorn's association with "cold," "arid," and "dry." It is ruled by the persevering mountain goat who builds his earthly kingdom with slow, unfaltering steps until he achieves his original goal. With this image in mind, it's reasonable to assume that Capricorn natives are serious types with serious goals; they are persevering, steady, practical in nature, persistent, materialistic, and very determined. They are strong, patient, and very adept in leadership positions. They are also loners of a sort, as Capricorn is not gregarious like Gemini and Libra. Material affairs and steady concentration of effort are more important to this sign than to any other. Capricorns are not afraid of hard work. They have an interest in the past and in tradition; old things, such as antiques, are important. More often than not, it seems, Capricorns have issues with the father figure, as this sign is traditionally associated with the father. "I build and use my talents," says Capricorn.

Keywords:
Organizing, structuring, practical, leading, stubborn, ambitious, executive, efficient, restrained, business-like, self-sufficient, responsible, systematic, cautious, conventional.
Rules:
the knees, bones, teeth
Key phrase:
I USE

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AQUARIUS (January 21-February 19) rules the common man, large groups, electricity, inventions, and the forward movement of mankind into the world of the future. The symbol for Aquarius is the water bearer, again a human figure. Aquarius depicts a figure pouring water from an urn onto the earth, symbolizing the dissemination (or communication) of ideas from one individual (the single container) to all humanity (the fertilization by water of the earth). Communication, then, is a key word for Aquarius, but there is more of a sense of altruism and an involvement of the collective here than there is with Gemini. Aquarians are interested in progress and the future. They are inventive souls, often brilliant, people-oriented, and social-minded. They can be quite fixed in their ideas and detached in their emotional relationships, for they approach life through the mind. This sign produces some highly individualistic people—rebellious types, in fact. Noted for a strong aversion to restraint, Aquarius must march to the tune of his or her own drum. The unsentimental Aquarius has the familiar refrain "I know."

Keywords:
Impersonal, mental, unconventional, eccentric, unusual, rebellious, independent, humane, abstract, friendly, original, radical, altruistic, scientific, universal, electrical, metaphysical, reformative.
Rules:
the legs, ankles
Key phrase:
I KNOW

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PISCES (February 20-March 20) marks the twelfth and final sign in our journey through the zodiac. This most sensitive of the twelve signs is noted for its depth of feeling, compassionate nature, and shy sweetness. Many Pisceans have strong creative or artistic talents. Pisces rules the feet, which is rather fitting since we started in our studies with Aries, which rules the head, and now have made our way to the bottom sign in our astrological-language list. The symbol for this sign is that of two fish swimming in opposite directions. One swims toward the realm of the soul, and the other toward the world of personality. Some believe that if the spiritual inclinations of this sign do not overpower and conquer the personality dimensions of the Pisces individual, then there is much suffering in the life. Indeed, Pisces is identified with suffering, and part of the reason for this is the idealistic urges that are inherent in this sign, the strong fantasy pull that is a part of the Pisces nature. Real life, that harsh world that we catch glimpses of on the nightly news broadcasts, is sometimes just too hard to take for Pisces, who has a reputation among astrology buffs for resorting to substances that alter reality—i.e., drugs and alcohol. When Pisces takes the higher road and follows a spiritual path, which many of these natives do, then the need to retreat from the world, which Pisceans feel, is channeled toward the path of service to others. Sacrifice is a key word for Pisces, whose deep spiritual leanings will ultimately proclaim, "I believe."

Keywords:
Emotional, sensitive, compassionate, confused, impressionable, visionary, vacillating, poetic, artistic, mystical, humble, creative, intuitive, idealistic, romantic, sympathetic.
Rules:
the feet
Key phrase:
I BELIEVE

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