Aristotle divided the
world into four physical elements: fire, earth, air and water. Four is a number
common to all mythologies. The astrological world also is divided into the same four elements, but they refer to a psychological
world, not the physical world. Carl Jung, the esteemed psychologist, taught that
the four elements represented four functions of the human psyche: fire for intuition, water for feeling, air for thinking
and earth for sensation. Of these, there were two pairs of opposites. The first is intuition and sensation, the second is thinking and feeling.
Each of us develops one of these elements to a greater degree than the others and this one becomes our dominant function. Its opposite, by virtue of its relationship to the dominant function, becomes our
The inferior function
is our weak area, our underdeveloped self. This weak area must be worked on to
bring about balance. Our life work is more than simply equalizing the four elements. We must actually blend them into something new and different. This is the process of creating or giving birth to the self. Fire
is the catalyst of this transformation.
Part One: Fire
Fire represents intuition. When we speak of intuition we are usually referring to womans intuition, which is
not the same thing. The intuition associated with fire is equated with energy
or the spirit. This is the creation fire, where unity of spirit existed, the divine spark.
Fire is needed to manifest transformation. Intuition is that vital spark
within us which knows, which has no need to analyze. This fire gives us strength of presence and the light in our eyes. As you can see, this is something very different from what we normally call womans
The connection between
fire and spirit is found in Gnosticism and the Kabbalah. These two systems
are based on a belief that there is spiritual unity between all creation and that divine spark from which all things were
created. Further, the more earthly, the more solid they become, the less connected
they are to that divine source. Alchemists, who were the spiritual descendants
of the Gnostics focused their attention not on turning metal into gold, as detractors would have you believe, but on blending
the four elements into something totally new and unique.
As the alchemists
worked to make transformation they knew that fire was needed in a slow, constant, regulated way to bring about change and
ultimate transformation. This fire is present within us. It is the Kundalini fire, the Chi spoken of in Hindu and Chinese philosophies. As we learn to regulate this inner fire, gaining control over our vital energies, we affect the transformation
from ego into Self.
The polar opposite
of Fire is Earth, so those with strong fire tend to lack sensation, the Earth quality.
Those with a lack of fire tend to lack energy and stamina.
Fire can be
further divided into two more categories: extraverted and introverted. Extraverted
fire personalities know how to play a hunch. They are in tune with their inner fire and use that inner knowledge to deal with
the outer world. They are susceptible to burnout and need to be rekindled periodically. Their awareness is turned outward.
fire signs are as highly attuned as extroverts, but they turn their awareness inside.
They are creative not so much in entrepreneurial skills as they are in self-expression through literature, poetry,
ideas and music. They tend to be quiet, unassuming folk who suddenly change the
world with through a book or a song. So the flame burns just as bright in introverted
fire signs, it just has more of an inner flame than the outer flame carried by extraverts.
It may be difficult
or impossible to tell just by looking at a chart to see if a person is an introvert or and extravert. Eighth or twelfth house placement generally implies an introvert, but this is not always so. The fourth house is a better place to look.
When the Sun, Moon
or Ascendant are in Aries, Leo, or Sagittarius or if Mars, Sun or Jupiter are in the angles (1st, 4th,
7th or 10th houses) they relate to spontaneity. Combustibility
is a real problem. Aries, the first sign of the Zodiac and the first fire sign,
is associated with self-centered concern for ones own needs. A primal concern
for survival exists, but wrapped up in the childlike temperament it has, Aires needs no outside force to put it into action. It truly acts in response to the inner fire.
Though fixed fire,
Leo, is identified as a masculine sign, its more accurately a strange combination of both masculine and feminine polarities. The yang exhibits itself through the need to create, to give of self. The yin exhibits itself through the need to receive attention and praise.
The fire within is one of magnetism and attraction. Sometimes the light
within is so strong that a Leo is in danger of becoming blinded by their own light, to be too infatuated with what they perceive
to be their own greatness. Whereas with Aries there is spontaneity, with Leo
the fire is focused on reproduction, either of children or of artistic pursuits. Leo
needs a lot of space in their environment to achieve that.
fire, brings a fire that tends to be disseminated. There is a need to spread
the fire wherever they go. They do that by spreading their truth, in their way,
to whomever they meet. There is both a sense of completeness and of change. Purification of the self is the life work of Sagittarius. They tend to either burn their candles at both ends, living to the extremes of excessiveness or they will
be ever cleansing and refining, readying themselves for a return to their Source.
Fire is an interesting
element in a chart. Too little fire causes a lack of energy, heat, radiance and
warmth. These people will complain of being cold even before coolness comes. On the other hand, too much heat can cause excessive body heat as the inner fire rages
out of control. Fire people tend to have spasms, muscle aches and pains when
they dont adequately release that energy through some physical activity such as sports, aerobics or running.
Fire people are better
suited toward work that leaves them working on their own, such as freelancing, owning their own businesses or working their
own hours. They need to have room to breathe and create. They need the illusion of freedom to function well. Aries
and Leos generally need sunshine to function well also, especially if they are 1st and 5th house placed. They don't handle depression or cloudy days well.
Astrology: Archetypal Powers in the Horoscope by Ariel Guttman & Kenneth