In Real Life- The Sun in Capricorn

(Pic courtesy of www.dreamstime.com)
(Pic courtesy of www.dreamstime.com)

Back in August I wrote a post about Leo. My Capricorn sister read it and asked when I was going to write something about her. At the time I replied flippantly that I would need to think of something nice to say about Capricorn… ouch! So, this blog is for my Cap sister Bec, her Cap husband, Cap children and my Cap Moon Dad, with apologies to last weeks Muse for the Miley lyrics… but seriously, they just work!

I read books to escape from the every day-tales of fantastical journeys and sweeping romances and mysteries with twists and turns. Anything from Jane Austen, Charles Dickens and Ian Rankin to Harry Potter, Twilight and, my latest obsession, the Outlander series. If I do read non- fiction, they are either astro texts or travel stories- the ones where people leave their normal lives behind and escape to somewhere else. I live in a world where bad people get their karma in the end. I like to cry from happiness rather than at misery. Having so much Pisces and water in my chart, it is imperative to my emotional survival that I don’t take on the suffering of people I don’t know.  I refuse to watch the news and have been accused (and rightly so) of living in a fantasy world.

My Cap sister, Bec, on the other hand, dislikes escapism. Reality and triumph over adversity or seemingly chronic conditions does it for her, but leaves me cold- I don’t have the focus required to dwell on setbacks- give me Jamie Fraser and his swashbuckling plaid any day. But Bec likes to learn from the experience of others- reading about hardship and challenge reinforces the importance of stability and security in life. She also firmly believes that reading about these difficulties will reinforce a survival spirit- especially when others are so much less fortunate than yourself. A mother of 4 she is practical, secure and with an Aries Ascendant which gives her the energy to run her household and the competitive spirit of achievement required to transport 4 children to different activities on a timetable that would exhaust many a lesser mortal. Whilst I live in a fantasy world, Bec is well and truly grounded in reality.

As kids we would play Monopoly (possibly the ultimate Capricorn game?). I would buy whatever property I landed on, generally lose focus and go bankrupt quite quickly- not that it mattered, after all, monopoly money is only play money. Bec would play the game strategically, aiming for the quality properties and utilities, quietly erecting hotels on each and then waiting for the sting. She would wait until I had become bankrupt so she could buy up my defaulted properties and immediately improve them as well. Bec and my Aries brother would then generally battle it out to the death (or tears- usually when Mr Aries would pick up the board and throw it- hence the reason that Monopoly is now banned at my parents’ home).   The combination of that Capricorn Sun, Aries Ascendant and focused Scorpio Mars was way too much and too disciplined for my Aries brother.

Why tell these stories? By associating with a person or a scenario, I am able to understand the Capricorn Sun a little better.  Every astrologer has a sign (or two, or three) that they find difficult to identify with and difficult to write about. This doesn’t mean that we don’t like that particular sign, (or the people who have placements in that sign) but rather that we find it difficult to understand- usually because of differences within our own chart and with our own motivations.

As much as I love my sister, Capricorn is one of those signs for me. Not just because I have no planets in Capricorn myself, or because I have a difficult relationship with Saturn (the ruler of Capricorn), but because the motivation of Capricorn is so entirely different to that of my Pisces planets.

Most signs have something in their key descriptive words which is sort of interesting or even slightly glamorous sounding. Cancer is caring and empathetic, Libra social and decorative and Taurus tactile and musical. Capricorn, though, is ambitious, goal orientated and hardworking- motivated by the attainment of security, stability and societal respect. Positive traits indeed, but difficult to live up to- especially when young… Capricorn doesn’t want to jump off anything and everything, escape into their dreams or run off to fight a crusade- and there is absolutely nothing wrong with that. Capricorn is, however, one sign which really grows into itself- quite possibly one of the reasons that people with Capricorn Ascendants and Suns (or with Saturn in the 1st house) age so well- they literally grow into their own skin. As Indiana Jones once said, ‘It’s not the years, but the mileage.’

However, mention these motivations to Capricorn and the response is likely to be ‘I am nothing like that, which just goes to show that astrology is a crock of s%^t,’  or, ‘You make me out to be motivated by nothing but work and I am nothing like that, which just goes to show that astrology is a crock of s%^t  ,’ or ‘you make me sound so boring and I am nothing like that, which just goes to show that astrology is a crock of s%^t.’

I also find that most signs have a shadow side that they are secretly willing to admit and even more secretly are proud of. Aquarians like their detached and quirky side, Gemini jokes about duplicity and Scorpio revels in her paranoia and revenge fantasies. Sag brags of his excesses and Pisces her addictions, but Capricorn has difficulty admitting to her shadow side. Materialistic? Elitist? Social climbing? ‘Not I,’ they will say, ‘I am nothing like that, which just goes to show that astrology is a crock of s%^t.’

"The Master," card by Symbalon
"The Master," card by Symbalon

All zodiac signs are a function of their modality, element, ruling planet. Therefore Capricorn is:

  • A cardinal, feminine, earth sign with Saturnian characteristics.
  • Energy is introverted and inwardly focused rather than outwardly expressed. 
  • Earthly attributes of practicality and stability are paramount.
  • Change and initiation will occur when security and societal respect are threatened.

Saturn represents maturity, mastery, containment, boundaries and restriction. As such:

  • Capricorn is by nature cold and dry, with not a lot of vital heat- this is the energy of discipline and hard work.
  • Capricorn rules the parts of the body that represent structure- skin, joints, hair, nails, teeth, the skeletal system.

Saturn structures get stronger as they mature- as experience and wisdom is absorbed and storms weathered and survived. So too with Capricorn:

  • Despite protests to the contrary from Capricorn Suns, Saturn does tend towards gloom, prudence, economy, melancholy and worry. Capricorn tends to “lighten up” with age.
  • Capricorn careers tend to peak later as achievement is based on practicality, prudence and perseverance rather than charisma and light-bulb moments.

Symbolically, Capricorn is represented by the image of the Sea-Goat, a mythical creature with the body of a mountain goat and the tail of a fish. The symbolism of The Mountain is inherent when we think of Saturn and Saturn transits. Where the mountain for Sagittarius is part of the adventure, existing as a challenge to get past, jump off and see what is on the other side; for Capricorn, it isn’t about what is waiting on the other side- it really is all about the Climb.

Capricorn achievement is not of the “look at me” fame and glory nature. It is quieter and more intrinsic. It is about mastery. It is about understanding the gravity and reality of life and confronting issues honestly and with wisdom and integrity.  It is about maturity and becoming an adult.

Capricorn needs to feel that their experience, wisdom and knowledge is appreciated- with or without the supporting feedback. As such, Capricorn does tend to internalise when down and can be prone to depression if she feels that she hasn’t achieved what she thinks she should have achieved. The danger for Capricorn is when she becomes hooked on social approval or compares herself and her position, salary and achievements to others and finds herself envious of the apparent ease with which others have accumulated. It is at this point that the shadow of Capricorn and its’ associated “ist” words come into play.

The lesson for Capricorn is that of the hermit in the Symbalon card- inner knowledge, inner strength and inner certainty is what is important. Learn to be alone, learn to just “be”- what other people think matters less than you would imagine.

There’s always gonna be another mountain
I’m always gonna wanna make it move
Always gonna be a uphill battle
Sometimes I’m gonna have to lose

Ain’t about how fast I get there
Ain’t about what’s waiting on the other side
It’s the climb

(“The Climb” by Miley Cyrus)