Your Place in the Sun: The Midheaven, Moving in the Right Direction

There’s an old Shaker hymn that sings of the simple gift of ending up where you ought to be.  Everyone wonders from time to time what they’ll do, where they’ll go – or if they’re well on the way forward, whether they’ve taken the right road.  The horoscope provides you with a good personal roadmap, of course, but there are particular elements of it that can be used quite specifically as compass points to orientate you towards an optimal manifestation of your best potentials, so that you can truly claim your birthright of a place in the sun.
Many of you will be aware of the importance of the sign rising at the eastern horizon at the time of your birth – the Ascendant – and its impact on the personality traits.  It is a point of very personal interaction with the world and unless you are born at sunrise – when your Sun-sign and Ascendant will be the same – you may well seem to other people to be more like your rising sign.  Indeed, the ancient Greek name for the Ascendant – horoskopos (meaning observation of the hour) – gives us the modern word horoscope.
The Ascendant and its opposite point on the western horizon, the Descendant, work as an axis pair and are certainly very significant.  But there is another very powerful axis in the birth-chart that marks your interaction with the world on a wider, more social scale.  This axis says something about how you fit in to the world at large, where you have come from and where you are going.  As such it can be considered an axis of destiny – a marker to where you will find yourself, find where you ought to be, and can claim the simple gift of your place in the sun.
This axis is the Midheaven-Lower Heaven, or MC-IC from the Latin medium coeli (middle of heaven) and imum coeli (base of heaven).  The Midheaven sits at the top of the chart, a high noon point where the Sun is at maximum strength and power, and casting no shadow.   Its opposite end is a midnight and lunar point, a quiet internal place which tells much about who you are inside, behind all the masks.   In most systems of dividing up the so called ‘houses’ of the horoscope, the MC traditionally marks the cusp of the tenth house of career and status.  The IC marks the cusp of the fourth house, the house of one’s roots and family and home – where you live physically and, I’d suggest, where you live most deeply in a psychological sense as well.
Both the Ascendant and MC axes are time and place specific for each person, and to be certain about them you need to know as closely as possible the time of your birth.   Astrologers call them the angles of the horoscope, as they describe major intersecting arcs in the complex spherical geometry used to describe symbolically, in two dimensions, the three dimensional time-space nexus that is the origin of all astrology.  They are not sources of energy in the way the Sun, Moon and planets are, but rather indicate power points at any given moment in time in space where energies can manifest.    This makes the angles very sensitive points, and planets that link closely to them have great influence astrologically.
Each day the Ascendant and Midheaven move through a complete 360 degree circle of the zodiac, all the signs, at rates which depend on the time of year and the various latitudes of the earth from which they are being measured.  But as a rule of thumb, if you were born at noon then your Sun and Midheaven are aligned together in a conjunction, and if you were born at midnight then your Sun is conjoined with the IC.  These birth times can be powerful destiny indicators as the Sun, the life force, is so tightly bound with the destiny angles, whether of origin or destination.
It is important to remember that the MC-IC work together as opposite ends of an axis, and although you can single out a particular end on which to focus attention, the other end is significant too.  The ultimate direction indicated by the MC is being fed, as it were, by the sustaining input from the source, the IC; and the vital source of the IC is being enriched and improved by feedback from the MC, bravely active in the world at large.  In many respects this axis can be considered the axis of the soul, and of one’s spiritual as well as material path through life.
The needs and choices of the MC have a strong connection with the deeper needs of the IC, and anything unsatisfactory emerging from the IC can find a negative expression through the filter of the MC in order to stimulate (provoke?!) growth and development.  In this way the MC-IC axis has a strong bearing on more profound moral qualities, and with the role of conscience in shaping one’s life-path.   The MC-IC is intimately bound up with the needs of the ego, and these can be a source of conflict and suffering until one has learned to make wise choices and direct one’s actions well.   In doing this, however, the best and truest direction of one’s life is revealed and clearly signposted, to be followed to the perfect end.
So the sign of the zodiac culminating at the Midheaven can also be read as a powerful destiny indicator.  It provides you with many insights into the kind of path to which you are most ideally suited, and also indicates some of the pitfalls that may impede your progress along it.  If you are troubled about what direction to take at any time, or worried about the career you have chosen (or fallen into!), consider the high noon point of your chart, where there are no shadows, only the brilliant light of certainty.  Your MC offers you a clear pointer to the right high road – which will lead you to your ideal goal.
MC in Aries
The pioneering sign of the zodiac can call you to blaze a pioneering trail through life in many ways, if Aries culminates at the time of your birth.  Regardless of how quiet or timid your Sun or Moon sign may be, somehow when your career is at stake, or when you really want something, the gloves come off, you’re off and away, and the mouse starts roaring.  Aries is ardent, impulsive, and unafraid.  Decisiveness and vigour override the placid social instincts and uncertain weighings of the Libra IC, and your motto could well be, “Just do it now!”
Aries is a Martial sign, and somehow the turnings of your life path will make you fight for things, whether in a literal way – joining the armed services or the police force, perhaps – or taking up cudgels on behalf of others, or a cause.  Fair play is an issue for you – the reflex of Libra at the IC – and you could be a formidable and fearless advocate in a court, a lobby group, or simply standing up for your co-workers.  You have a natural instinct for leadership, and somehow your life will propel you into situations where you take a leading role.  Before long even the most self-effacing will start to get a buzz out of being in charge and showing others the way forward.
Your courage, energy and determination can be deeply inspiring and infectious – yet rashness and bullying tendencies are anything but.  It can be a profound shock to discover other people are reacting to these negatives of Aries because with Libra at the base of your chart, you want to get along with everyone and really believe that you always play fair.  Your inner being is tuned to the gentle melodies of Venus, not the military brass of Mars.  Yet the negative Aries behaviours are being fed by Libran uncertainties and indecisiveness, and overcompensating by deciding too quickly or working on the “attack is the best defence” principle.  A major lesson for you may be the difference between aggression and assertion, and the appropriate balancing and channelling of your will-to-power and strength.  It can be a revelation to discover that your idea of fair may not be the same as everyone else’s.
When you have harmonised your inner Libran discords and uncertainties, and gained true insight into the capacities of your Arien strength, you can be a major force for good in the world.  Under the banner of the spiritual warrior you can lead the vanguard and march into the promised land.
MC in Taurus
If your MC is in the sign of Taurus, your life direction is strongly attuned to the rhythms of nature.  The most earthy of signs, Taurus can quite literally lead you to a life on the land, as a farmer or horticulturalist, or to a life in the land, associated with mining or petrochemical industries.   The earth itself and its fruits are very important to you, and you gain comfort and certainty from things, real things, things you can touch and see and smell and taste.  Taurus and its opposite, Scorpio, are also money signs, and motivated strongly towards security.  Your material instincts could also lead you into business ventures (especially with commodities rather than services), accounting and the world of finance.
The tactile sense of form and artistic sensibility bestowed by Taurus can also incline towards a creative expression, especially the more plastic arts and crafts like pottery and wood working, or the more mathematical arts like music.  Whatever material outlet you seek, the deeper purpose of Taurean energy is to give you an understanding of what is truly and permanently of value in the world as a whole, and in your own life in particular.  The creation of an impeccable value system is a major aspect of your life path.
Underlying the practical activity of Taurus is an intense Scorpio IC, which notices everything and feels very deeply, sometimes too deeply.  Issues of emotional as well as physical safety loom large for you, as do issues around the sharing of resources.   Deep seated Scorpionic anxieties about basic survival and suspicion of others’ motives may emerge distorted through the Taurus MC as greed and selfishness, undermining your capacity to give and to share, and alienating you from people.   A major lesson in your life could revolve around perceptions that you do not care or give enough, and you will discover that in opening up to people there is an abundance of everything for everyone.
When you have dealt with a deep inner Scorpionic fear around intimacy and exposure, you are able to become the most generous and supportive of companions, a tower of practical Taurean strength and know-how to people in need of good advice, a helping hand – and a warm open heart.
MC in Gemini
With Gemini at the most elevated point of the horoscope, communication becomes of vital importance for you.  Because communication skills are so vital, the list of possible career options for a Gemini MC is almost endless.  Anything to do with the vast communications or information industries, sales and marketing, public relations, writing, speaking, teaching – anything where information is exchanged and ideas are shared can help you find your niche.   Perhaps the most limiting factor is the multiplicity of options open to your versatile range of talents, because Gemini tends to be a multi-skilled sign, mentally agile and able, with a fluent gift of the gab.
Whatever you do should add to a knowledge base – both your own and the knowledge shared more widely with everyone else around you.  Gemini and its opposite sign, Sagittarius, are both associated with learning things, and it is even possible you may aim high professionally, to an academic career or the law – somewhere you can talk!  Travel may also be a major consideration for you, and the chance to move freely could motivate you to anything that allows you to roam far and wide.  Your two most pressing problems are likely to be a low boredom threshold and a tendency to spread yourself too thinly.  You need stimulus, but not at any price.
Your Sagittarian base gives you an unsinkable optimism and a dislike of constraint.  Yet the urge for freedom and quest for meaning can refract oddly through Gemini, emerging as a superficial coverage of everything and close attention to nothing – and no one.  You could become a jack of all trades and master of none, and if this blithe jumping from one activity to another spills over into your personal life, it could have difficult consequences.  Friendships and more intimate relationships may come and go quickly, at the risk of great loneliness.  There may be a major lesson for you in focusing your quicksilver attention, abilities and affections, so that you truly succeed in both professional and personal ways, and do not carelessly squander your gifts.
When your swift winged intellect has both dived into the depths and soared to the heights, you will greatly enrich your store of knowledge.  Then you can settle enough to offer a vision to the world both shimmering with Gemini wit and profound with Sagittarian wisdom:  one which helps lead everyone into the light of perfect understanding.
MC in Cancer
The sign of the Moon, the mother and nurturing at the Midheaven suggests that your life path must involve you in looking after other people in some way, regardless of how far it might be from reflecting a traditional family paradigm.   It may be that you are the focal point of your family, sacrificing a career in the world to look after others, or you may still be the focus whilst going into the world under a family banner – running a family business or somehow working from home are obvious choices for you.  You may inherit a role, on a family farm or in a family company.  Or it could be also that you come to see the world at large as your family, and pursue a pastoral occupation, looking after children, teaching, counselling, nursing, any activity where you take on a mothering role (and that’s regardless of your gender, too!).
Cancer as the sign of the Moon might naturally be considered the sign of the Lower Heaven or IC, and having it at the MC brings something of the inner world into the public domain.  It is an emotional signature, but inclined to self-protective timidity.  Often you will be drawn to careers that offer safety, perhaps with fewer glittering prizes but a steady income and superannuation at the end.   There is often a pattern of slow but steady building towards a final goal – and the building could be quite literal.  Cancer is the sign of the home, whether private or corporate.  So the construction industry could be another option for you.  Whatever you build has to be solid and real, protecting you and those you care about.  There is something dynastic about this combination, with a need for continuity.
That Capricorn base of yours gives you a large shot of deep down ambition, a need to be taken seriously and accorded respect.   There can be a degree of severity here, and an inclination towards passing judgments.  Inner doubts and fears about a lack of security or uncertain status can make you quite relentless, driving yourself and those close to you, turning you into a nagging spouse, a pushy parent, or the boss who is never satisfied.  The materialism of Capricorn, when distorted through a timorous Cancer Midheaven, can become very intrusive and bunker down into a siege mentality.  A major lesson in life could come from learning to let go of smother love or material anxieties, so that you can construct a deeper and truer security based on a free-flowing, yet deeply practical and supportive, connectedness.
When you have faced squarely the essence and extent of your worldly Capricornian inner drives, and learned to look after people without seeking to dominate, you can embody the noblest potentials of Cancer and become a kind of universal mother figure, with gifts of loving sustenance as bounteous as those of Mother Nature herself.
MC in Leo
Leo is the Sun’s own sign, and at its best embodies the solar positives of vitality, creativity and abundance.  It might almost be considered the natural sign for the Midheaven, even though Capricorn is the ruling sign of the tenth house of career and worldly position.    With Leo at the MC, you really do need a special place in the sun, where your own light can shine in concert with the sun’s rays for the benefit of all – and their admiration, of course!  There is something dramatic about Leo culminating, a “look at me!” influence.  At your best, you are worth looking at, too, doing something new, making something wonderful, performing in a role and always the star, never part of the chorus.  You’re a born actor.
There is a strong need to lead, to be in charge.  You have a great deal of flair, and a touch of artistry graces all your works, even if they are quite practical in expression.  Your need to be special in some way can be met by an artistic vocation where you are your own boss, or you may feel almost compelled to climb the corporate ladder in an executive role.   You can be very generous, and may be drawn to paths where you play a bountiful role, whether helping other people to express their own specialness as a trainer, facilitator or lobbyist, or into actual charitable works – community work, aid activities, even voluntary work that you do in tandem with some other career.    You may also be drawn to anything that helps to develop the potential of children or young people.
When firing with the joy of life, Leo includes something of the altruism of its opposite sign, Aquarius.  Having the water bearer at the IC can give you a deep need to improve the world in some way.  But Aquarian idealism if distorted through the negative qualities of Leo can emerge as a vanity ridden reforming zeal that benefits no one in particular, least of all you.  Leo needs authority.   True authority is the fruit of wide experience and knowledge, elements of the best of Aquarius, not its narrow and indifferent worst.  Leo also needs heart, informed by gentle wisdom, not egotism chilled by the ice of Aquarian intellectualism in overdrive.  There may be major lessons in the life path around the gaining of a genuine authority and a loving acceptance of human folly and variety, without trying to coerce everyone into a personal vision of how things should be.
Yet in moving beyond the chillier limitations of the Aquarian mindset, and in activating the most warm and generous impulses of Leo, you can achieve a superb integration of heart and head which is the source of both a splendid creativity and an authority so effortless that you lead the pack without even having to try.
MC in Virgo
If Virgo is the sign at the MC, two keywords stand out:  integration and service.  Virgo stimulates the desire to be useful, and to be efficient, and this can become a very serious calling for you if you have Virgo at the Midheaven.  This is the sign of the born administrator, pulling together all the disparate threads that make up the tapestry of the organisation, and weaving them into a coherent cloth whose design and purpose are clear.  Virgo is also a modest sign, and is often reticent about pushing forward.  Consequently you may be happier in the background, in an administrative support role, as a secretary or assistant.
If your chart indicates you are not otherwise quietly in the background, a Virgo MC can be a powerful help to project managers and team leaders, people who need to manage masses of detail.  It can be good for function managers, or experts on any sort of procedure or protocol.   Virgo is pre-eminently the sign of service, which is not the same as servility.  It is associated with some of the highest community service callings: medical, para-medical and nursing professions, emergency services, the fire brigade, the police force, and the armed services as a whole.  It is also associated with organised labour movements and with the welfare of ordinary working people.  And it can lead to a religious vocation by reflex with the opposite sign, Pisces, especially where the calling leads towards teaching or nursing.
The urge to help others springs in part from the sense of empathy and compassion that rises from the deeper wellspring of the Pisces IC, which senses a profound wholeness in the universe.  This can frighten the pragmatism of the Virgo MC and lead to overcompensating behaviours, that cling to mundane realities, that box everything in, and categorise people.  You may seek to deny any notion of commonality, and become overly critical of people who fall short of your standards.  Or in a fear of being overwhelmed by the infinite, you may seek too rigidly to impose order on your bit of the world, denying mystery any access.  A major lesson may come in the understanding that the integration of all the fragments for which Virgo longs can be accomplished so much more efficiently in the light of a Piscean vision of wholeness.
When you have learned to honour and enjoy the loving limitlessness of your Piscean inner being, and recognised with Virgoan clarity, unmixed with either conceit or self-pity, your part in the greater scheme of things, you can offer to the world a calling to service that imitates something of the divine.
MC in Libra
With Libra at the Midheaven the crucial issue of your life is getting the balance right.  The scales are famous for the way they can tilt and drop, rise and fall, and the first thing you need to do is to make up your mind what you want to do.  Libra is an air sign, and clever; it is also a highly social sign, and wants nothing so much as peace and harmony in all encounters and discourse.  You know that isn’t possible all the time, but a career that allows you to pour oil on troubled waters – any area where you can mediate, conciliate, counsel or facilitate – will prove deeply rewarding.  Your human touch also makes you a natural for the so-called career of the 1990s, public relations.
Libra, like Taurus, is one of the two signs of Venus, so as well as charm you can have artistic gifts as well.  As an artist you may like working in a more social setting – an orchestral musician rather than a lonely painter in a garret – or in some arty field that keeps you both connected with other people and pleasing them, such as interior design.  Under that lovely thick velvet glove of yours, however, hides the firm iron fist of Mars, striking out from the opposite sign of Aries.  Your deep and subtle understanding of the use of force can make you the ideal person to help resolve conflicts at any level.  You are a born diplomat and – if fired enough by Arien passion and the need to lead – a born politician, too.  Or you could combine that deep down interest in power with the Libran passion for fairness, and carve out a career in the legal profession.
If you ever decide to go to the bad you could be the most convincing of con-men, because Libra’s charm makes it the most plausible of signs!  This is perhaps one of the riskiest things for you, that like your opposite number Aries, your idea of fairness can distort egoistically, and never go further than yourself.  This is the self-centredness of your Aries IC erupting with its darkest face through the Libra Midheaven, and throwing the balance of the scales completely out of kilter.  The ancient Semitic and Sumerian counterparts of Venus, Ishtar and Inanna, were goddesses of war as well as love.  When Libra abandons the path of peace, all hell can break loose.   A major lesson in your life can be taming the inner rashness and will-to- power of the Aries IC, and recognising that the needs and rights others are as important as your own.  Fair’s fair, after all.
When you direct your inner Arien power and drive for the good of others as well as for yourself, you will be able – as the ancient Egyptians believed – to keep the balance of the great scales of Tahuti, a balance far older than the Roman scales of Libra.  In doing so, you will strike a note of harmony for all to sing.
MC in Scorpio
The sign of transformation, death and creation anew is a potent symbol to have as the guiding light of your Midheaven.   Scorpio is one of the most mysterious signs, of deep inner responses and processes, intense, focused, determined.  As a signpost to destiny it can suggest that your life path will take you through so many changes, it may seem as though you’ve had several lives in one.  Scorpio is a sign of Mars, like Aries, and like Aries can have a military and competitive streak.  It is also a sign of passionate curiosity and can make you superlative in research, leading to a career in the sciences or anything investigative – including the police force and even espionage!  Many of you may feel compelled to do something that plays with fire, literally as well as metaphorically.
Scorpio is also, like its opposite sign Taurus, associated with money.  Often this money belongs to someone else – so a Scorpio MC can point you to a career path in accountancy, investment advising, stockbroking and banking.  You should have a good head for business and would tend to be fairly conventional both about worldly affairs and personal conduct – despite anything you may have read or heard about Scorpio’s torrid sex life!  Seriously though – the realm of interpersonal relationships can be of vital importance when Scorpio is strong.  The desire to understand what most deeply makes everyone tick, and the labyrinth of human intimacies, may lead you towards a career as a psychotherapist or psychiatrist, or as a marriage or a prison counsellor.  You understand so well the deeper urges of the soul, both light and dark, and can help others to do the same.
Underpinning your intense approach to life is a thoroughly grounded Taurus IC, which seeks practical outcomes and proper recognition for effort expended.  Your physical security is terribly important, and there is the possibility that pretty basic Taurean anxieties about money, possessions and possessiveness could rise up unattractively if you haven’t put them through Scorpio’s purifying fire first.  This is what fuels the most famous negative of Scorpio – envy – that fear and fury that someone somewhere might have more than you do.  Note that qualifying “might have”.  Very likely they don’t have more at all; everyone has some advantages over other people, with relative disadvantages to match.  There may be a major lesson in your life around what you most deeply own in relation to others, and what others own too; and how everyone can share what they have in safety when there is trust and goodwill.
When you are certain of the stability of your Taurus base and your secure possession of things spiritual as well as material, you can rise like the phoenix through your Scorpio MC on wings of fire, understanding the fears and foibles of other hearts and able to share with them the wisdom you have gained, a truly profound intimacy of the soul.
MC in Sagittarius
The sign of the archer is the explorer’s sign, whether the unknown territory is physical, mental, emotional or some intriguing mix of everything.  Sagittarius at the top of the chart makes for wanderlust, and your career as well as your life needs somehow to be a journey.  Anything that gives you space, movement or travel seems good:  you may become a pilot or a flight attendant, lead tour groups to exotic lands, arrange the travel if you want the safety too of a desk job, or you might join the diplomatic service, a survey team on a frontier (if you can find one now), or even if all else fails the Foreign Legion … The athletes amongst you may be able to turn your recreation into a career, even travel the world with it.
There is another side to Sagittarius, of course, a deeply philosophical one.  This is, after all, one of the signs of Jupiter, with his concern for ethics and wisdom as well as his great abundance of joy.  Sagittarius is naturally associated with the ninth house of the horoscope, which medieval astrologers called the house of God.  Regardless of your belief system, if Sagittarius is at the MC you may have a strong religious vocation, or seek a career that allows you to think deeply and ponder the meaning of life, perhaps something academic or associated with teaching.  Whatever you do is ultimately geared to leading you to some kind of source.
The Sagittarian quest is fuelled by the curiosity and intellectual endeavour of the Gemini IC, which wants to communicate far and wide.  But if the energies of the Gemini base are scattered too much and lack a concrete focus, they can emerge through the Sagittarian MC as a very elusive saboteur.   Don Quixote, impassioned righter of wrongs, but deluded and tilting pointlessly at windmills he has mistaken for giants, is a shadow Sagittarian figure.   Or the negative Geminian propensity to gossip and chatter away without thinking can erupt through Sagittarius’s crude and horsy side as foot-in-mouth disease.   There may be a major lesson in your life about defining the object of your quest, drawing a clear intellectual map of the way, and respecting the feelings and limitations of those you meet who haven’t your abilities or answers, but who don’t deserve to be tactlessly reminded of the fact.
Once you have disciplined and fully engaged that ingenious Gemini IC, the Sagittarian quest can be undertaken with insight as well as inspiration.  Your life path is drawing you to seek some kind of holy grail, and the adventures you have along the way will serve to develop the great faculty of wisdom.
MC in Capricorn
Capricorn is naturally associated with the tenth house of the horoscope, the domain of career and status, and in most systems of house division the Midheaven marks the tenth house cusp.  So although the Midheaven is a solar point, Capricorn has a strong affinity with it too.  The sign of the sea-goat is famous for its ambition, worldliness, and desire to exercise some form of power or control.  If you have Capricorn culminating, you have a huge need to succeed at something, to gain respect and recognition, and to have some real say in how things are run and done.  This is the executive position, leading you up the corporate ladder to the top.  And if your ambitions don’t run quite this far, you can still be considered management material, in line for a leading hand position, or a factory supervisor, or a head of department.  In some way you end up one of the bosses, if not the big boss.
If you don’t work for someone else you may well work for yourself: Capricorn is an earth sign, and all the earth signs have an affinity for business and money making.  A Capricorn MC can signal the self-made business person, and if you aren’t busy managing a business or staff you might be managing money instead.  Like Taurus and Scorpio, you could be a good accountant, banker, stockbroker.  The intellectuals amongst you could do very well academically, and may end up either in research or administrative posts.  The desire to continue a family tradition may also determine your career path, by reflex with your Cancer IC – perhaps there is a company boardroom lined with ancestral portraits, a space just waiting for yours in time.
The Cancer IC gives you strong protective instincts, including self-protection.  Beneath the often austere formality of the Capricorn MC you are very emotional and sensitive and easily hurt and discouraged.  This can cause your Capricorn side to overcompensate, and develop a very hard-edged and heavy handed approach to people and situations, because you think you’d better start as you mean to go on, or get in first, or set a proper example of duty and discipline.  This can be so self-defeating, for if other people – especially your staff – regard you as tyrannical, you’ll get very little support or real productivity.  And if you’re still climbing the ladder, an arrogant or chippy attitude could cost you dearly in the long run.  There could be a major lesson in your life around issues of control and good but flexible work ethics, as you learn that more flies are caught with gentle Cancerian honey than with astringent Capricornian vinegar.
When you have accepted that the sensitive responsiveness of your Cancer IC is not weakness but a profound strength, and that you can look after other people without losing anything yourself, your Capricorn MC will take you very, very far.  The sea-goat tucks in his tail and climbs to the top of the mountain, high above the plains and valleys below.
MC in Aquarius
When the humane, idealistic and progressive sign of Aquarius is at the MC, your life path is somehow keyed to the rhythm of the new, and towards doing something of value to the wider community.  You feel that you’d like to leave the world a little better than you found it, or at least your small patch of it.  At a practical level, Aquarius is associated with new technologies and scientific discoveries, and you may well be caught up in the technological revolution, the electronics and information industries, or in research into new methods and new solutions for all manner of problems and issues.   If you don’t possess a scientific and mathematical bent, your intellectual clarity may be put to use in other ways, teaching, marketing, facilitating.  Aquarius is very good at handling groups, and you could be a very effective staff trainer, project manager, or team leader.
Social activism of some kind will often beckon the Aquarian MC, and from youth onwards you may be very motivated politically.  A conservative approach is unlikely but not impossible – as well as ruling the new, Aquarius has influence over those things so old that they are effectively new again.  It is the sign of the archaeologist or palaeontologist rather than the recent historian.  You may also be drawn to the “New Age” – most of which is actually very old age, re-packaging ancient ideas and practices in a modern way.  In this regard you could be one of the people leading breakthrough groups of some kind – healing, meditating, consciousness-raising.  Aquarius gets a tremendous buzz out of seeing people and situations change for the better – and it can make you a brilliant communicator and catalyst.
Underneath the shining idealism and community-mindedness of an Aquarius MC is the shining creativity and individualism of a Leo IC.  Yet Leo’s need for specialness can deteriorate into self-aggrandisement, and emerging through the cool emotional detachment of an Aquarius MC can create a self-involvement that is deeply alienating.  For all Aquarius’s democratic talk, it can be terribly autocratic in method, and make quite extraordinary demands on other people to conform to its lead.  There may be a major lesson in your life around what you really understand and mean about the rights of others, and honouring the whole group endeavour as well as your own contribution to it.  Your way is not necessarily the only way.
As you integrate the Leonian drive to be recognised as special, your Aquarius MC will enable you to offer your own example of uniqueness as a guide to others, so that everyone in your circle experiences the personal breakthrough that facilitates the growth and development of the whole group, for the betterment of all.
MC in Pisces
If you have Pisces at the MC, your emotional responsiveness and ability to identify with all creation makes your ideal life one that is immersed in meaning.  This means pursuing an artistic, service or religious path that allows you to cover the gamut of human – and indeed all – experience.   It could take you into any creative outlet, as a designer or painter, especially if you create illusions by working in fashion, the theatre and film worlds, or even advertising.  It could also lead you to help others, in nursing or other healing work, or into a full religious vocation in a convent, monastery or ministry.
Though Pisces makes you want to help and support people and you have a shoulder for them to cry on, you should beware taking on counselling work unless you have strong air-sign influences as well, so that you can detach and keep separate your issues and your client’s issues.  The religious – or perhaps one should say spiritual – instincts of Pisces do not necessarily conform to a dogma, and at their deepest express an awareness of the interconnectedness of the universe.  You can understand so much, and even if you do not work as an actor – though you might! – you tend to put yourself into other shoes and try on other roles.   It is interesting that as the Age of Pisces is ending, the whole world has become transfixed by the illusions of film especially, and the parts actors play in showing humanity its infinite variety of being.
At the base of your chart is a practical Virgo IC, seeking integration and the perfection of wholeness.  Pisces too seeks wholeness and a kind of cosmic perfection and unity, but the vision can be unstable and Piscean impressionability can become delusional.  This occurs when the Virgoan efforts to bring together the different elements of the personality have gone awry, leading to the Piscean negatives of fragmentation and dissolution, as well as disillusion.   You achieve nothing at all if the base of your being is in pieces, and your efforts to communicate a mystical vision may strike everyone else as incoherent nonsense, or your well-intentioned offers of help may be rejected as cloying interference.  There can be major lessons in your life around the need for your visions and spiritual practices to be grounded in a secure appreciation of mundane reality, and that compassion is most true and helpful when offered by someone who is together, rather than falling apart.
When you have integrated and stabilised your rational and useful Virgo inner being, you can bring into the world a Piscean vision of unity and universal concord that through compassion eases pain and suffering, dissolves artificial barriers, and allows all creation to harmonise and connect in the oneness of the divine.
© 1998, 2011 Roderick Kidston
(This article was published first in the WellBeing Astrology Guide 1999.)
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