Joanne Wickenburg, Astrologer

ATTITUDES, HEALTH and your SUN SIGN
A Mental Health Checkup for each Sign of the Zodiac
By Joanne Wickenburg

(C) 2009 Joanne Wickenburg -- All rights reserved.


How often have you heard someone say, "He galls me," or "Get off my back," or "I wouldn't bend my knee to her," or any number of other cliches that refer to bodily functions or anatomical parts? The subconscious mind is not always able to differentiate between the positive and negative data we feed it nor does it always make distinctions between aphorisms and fact. Perhaps you once said, when referring to someone you didn't like, "She really makes me sick," and then within days you landed in bed with the flu. Thoughts are things.

Anatomical functions that relate to these age-old cliches are ruled by the signs of the zodiac. There is also a direct relationship between the psychological needs represented by the 12 signs and the physiological functions each represent. When the needs of the signs are suppressed or referred to irreverently, parts of the anatomy or bodily functions they rule often suffer. By examining the needs of the zodiacal signs with the physical conditions they rule you will find some revealing information about why people get sick.

Your sun sign describes what you need in order to feel vibrant and important. The sun's life-giving power helps to light your way throughout the course of your life. When the needs of your sun sign are not met, personal energy is diminished or misdirected and physical dis-eases could occur. Here is a rule of thumb to follow when considering how distressed signs manifest in illness:

Dis-eases of internal bodily functions are induced by repressed needs and energy, while
external dis-eases that are visible to others often occur as a result of excessive or aggressive behaviors.

For example, fractures can result from careless action. Ulcers, however, are usually caused by pent-up emotional stress

ARIES (Head): Do you have the freedom you need to do your own thing without undue interference from others? Your identity is dependent on your fearlessness to initiate new activity independently. You "shine" as you develop your potential for leadership and tap into the courage that is required to blaze new trails. If you fear taking the initiative to secure your independence, Aries discomforts could result.

Headaches are symptoms  that your freedom is being compromised.  Perhaps you feel trapped, surrounded and unable to "be yourself?" If your need for leadership (to be the "head") is threatened, headaches could result. At such times you could feel as if you are "hitting your head against a brick wall" and getting nowhere.

When meeting others for the first time, your face is the first thing they see. What does your face tell them about who you are? Head or facial wounds may be your way of showing others that you have recently overextended boundaries by being excessively aggressive, or that you allow others to dominate you. Small burns or fevers can be your response to being "burned." Fever blisters can say the same thing.

Acne is also an Aries-ruled disorder. How many adolescents suffer from an inability to be themselves? Frustration results when told to both grow up AND act their age, all in the same breath. The resulting frustration, if not handled outwardly, can erupt in facial welts.

In summary: Aries dis-eases are a result of "identity frustration."

TAURUS (Neck): While Aries is concerned with action for action's sake, the need of Taurus is to create something valuable that can be demonstrated in some tangible way. Productivity and practicality are keywords that qualify your sense of self worth. When your value (material or otherwise) is compromised dis-eases associated with the neck and throat could result.

Possessiveness and envy at one level, or lack of productivity and self worth at another, can lead to sore throats. Tonsillitis, for example, often corresponds to a period in a child's development when his or her "worth" is challenged. When sore throats interrupt your usual productive schedule, it might be wise to ask yourself, "What is it that I just can't swallow?" Or, "Who is challenging my values or self worth?" Or, "To what have I become overly attached?" Or, "What am I taking for granted?" Coughs and choking, on the other hand, can result from taking in too much out and fear of letting go of what has no future value. Because Taurus is a Fixed sign, change is seldom easy.

In summary, Taurus dis-eases are a result of "Misplaced values."

GEMINI (Arms, hands, shoulders, lungs, nervous system): You need to gather information from a wide variety of sources in order to fulfill your innate curiosity. You learn by association, or "connecting the dots." While these skills lead to a talent for multi-tasking, the potential to spread yourself too thin can lead to difficulty channeling or focusing your thoughts. Injuries to the hands and fingers are common signs that you have your "fingers in too many pies." When ideas are repressed or verbal communication is prohibited, nervous habits can result. Gemini is associated with smoking because of its rulership over the lungs. Gemini's are particularly vulnerable to this habit because they are inherently high-strung.

Gemini also rules the shoulders. How many times have you sat over a computer and had your shoulders ache from tension. Is this the result of lack of mobility or is it because you've lost your sun's glow?

In summary, Gemini dis-eases are a result of unfocussed mental energy.

CANCER: (Stomach and breasts). You are the great protector. You discover your own importance as a result of creating and enforcing safety zones, not only for your own protection but to assure the safety of those people and things you hold dear. However, when your need for strong emotional foundations is threatened in some way, the breasts or stomach could experience the resulting pain.

Ulcers are one of the results of excessive emotional stress. If you suffer from this malady, ask yourself: What's going on in your life that you can't quite "stomach?" Like the crab whose pincers hold onto its prey at the cost of its own life, it is important that you learn to let go when circumstances show the time is right to do so.  Instead of nurturing the problems surrounding you and watching them grow, try releasing your hold for awhile.

Because Cancer is the most nurturing of all of the signs, it isn't surprising to find that Cancer rules the breasts and the ovaries. If you feel unable to nurture what's dear to your heart, physical difficulties in these areas could result when what you love is "torn from your breast."

In summary, Cancer dis-eases are the result of feeling unneeded or emotionally unsafe.

LEO (Heart and spine): Your sign is the "heart" of the zodiac, ruled by the sun's brilliant splendor. You grow in self awareness as you see your own personality reflected on everything that you touch. For this reason, you need to shine and take pride in all that you do. You are not happy when someone else overshadows your glow. Therefore, it is not easy for you to ask for help when life presents heavy burdens. Perhaps this is why so many who share your sun sign suffer from back pain. If you fall into this category, ask yourself, "Have you taken on too great a load because you are too proud to ask for help? Can you "bend" your will without feeling spineless?

You need to put your whole heart into what you are doing, and you want others to value your efforts. But it is easy to go too far or to ask too much. Heart patients often confess to a building fear of not being appreciated. Some literally fall victim to a broken heart.

In summary, Leo ruled dis-eases are a result of misplaced ego.

VIRGO (intestines): Your purpose is to learn to distinguish the difference between what is valuable and useful and what is superficial. You need to be useful and of service and you are discriminating in the techniques you use to accomplish these ends.  As information is accumulated, tit must be analyzed to see the value contained within it. What proves to be superfluous is eliminated while what is deemed valuable is put to good use.

So it is with your body. Food is processed in the intestines. Part of its substance is absorbed through the intestinal walls while the rest is prepared to be eliminated. Failure to use discrimination can easily cause intestinal distress.

If you suffer from such dis-ease, ask yourself: What is happening in your life that you unable to "digest." Is your life out of order in some way? Are you being discriminating without becoming excessively critical? Are you helping others by providing them with tools to help themselves?

In summary, Virgo ruled dis-eases are a result of lack of or excessive discrimination.


LIBRA (Kidneys): Balance and harmony are your ultimate goals. You grow in self awareness by learning to share experiences and ideas with others. Interaction leads to objectivity, an important quality for you to learn. Through sharing you learn to see others' points of view which leads to an awareness of the importance of equality and justice for all.

Imbalances in your personal life which interfere with your need for a partner can create an imbalance in the body's functioning, particularly through kidney function. The role of the kidneys is to purify the body of toxins and irritants. When relationships become "toxic" to the point that you lose your equilibrium physical dis-ease results.

A craving for a partner with whom to share your life, when left unfulfilled, can result in a craving for "sweets" which subsequently affects the kidneys. Sharing, working side-by-side with others, seeing the needs of others as equal in importance to your own without losing your identity in the process can help put an end to Libra disorders.

In summary, Libra dis-eases are a result of imbalances between the self and others.

SCORPIO (sexuality and elimination): Scorpio is the sign of regeneration. You are intense and powerful, and oh, so magnetic. Your purpose in life is to unite your power with the power of others in order to create something that you alone could not. This requires trust; this requires passion; this requires sacrifice.

Regeneration and release are the major lessons involved with this sign. Resentments that hang on, a fear of letting go, or an excessive drive to control can easily lead to blockages in both the body's elimination process and in sexual drive.

It interesting that in our worst times, we tend to use cliches or profanities that refer to the body's elimination process or sexual function?  They are powerful symbols that can be used to frighten away the foes or intimidate the weak.

In summary, Scorpio dis-eases are a result of control issues.

SAGITTARIUS (liver, hips and thighs): Life has no limits for you; your future seems always bright. Sagittarius is the sign of expansion, and you live out its purpose by always looking ahead and seldom looking back. "Don't fence me in" is your motto. Your sights are set on the promise of tomorrow, but often at the expense of the realities of today. The harder you try to avoid these realities, the more likely you will be to confront them. Like your symbol, the archer, you aim for the sky. Focus is your challenge. While it is important that you always look to the promise of the future, and understand the larger, more philosophical, point of view, you also need to bring your ideals back to earth so they can be used creatively in your daily life.

Sagittarius dis-eases are associated with excess. Obesity, liver malfunctions and alcoholism are associated with this sign. Over-eating or over-drinking stem from either an inability to see the potential of how to attain your goals, or from dissatisfaction with the realities of everyday living. Learning to live one day at a time might be helpful in dealing with problems associated with excess.

Impatience and exaggeration are also Sagittarius ruled. A broken leg or an arthritic hip will certainly bring you down to earth where escape is no longer a choice.

In summary, Sagittarius dis-eases are a result of excess or fear of losing freedom.

CAPRICORN (bones, knees, joints): You need to know where you fit into the larger social structure. You are concerned with defining your territory, achieving success and  being recognized for your ability to respond to important situations in life.

In order to find success in the social structure, you need to know its rules and the boundaries that define your place within it. Yet, in the process of reaching your ambitions, it is easy to get caught up with the structures, expectations, regulations and limitations of society to the degree that you lose your individuality and flexibility both psychologically and physically.

If you hear yourself saying: "I wouldn't bend my knee to him," stop and ask yourself if you have become inflexible and unresponsive to the needs and rights of others in your quest for personal success. Likewise, if you Have your bones become brittle out of old age, or because you have become crystallized in an inflexible mindset. Humility is the keynote here. Can you find success within the social structure without becoming authoritative or judgmental concerning the role of others around you?

In summery, Capricorn dis-eases are often a result of inflexibility and excessive urges to control.

AQUARIUS (ankles, calves): You are the oddball of the zodiac; to you, conformity is synonymous with suffering. Self awareness for you comes as a result of rebellion and demonstration of your originality and uniqueness. Never satisfied with the status quo, your mission involves changing outdated attitudes and introducing a new way of viewing the world. Your originality can develop true genius, or on the other hand, when left undirected, encourages useless rebellion and foolish risks. For this reason, Aquarius has also been associated with accidents and lightening strike like events.

Aquarius rules the more highly geared nervous system. When your urge to be unique and to break out of a mold you no longer fit into is ignored, unique nervous disorders could result, a common one being facial or body tics. On the other hand, this sign also rules the ankles and calves. How many tines have you twisted an ankle shortly after having done something erratic without thinking about the consequences. Is your body punishing you for rebelling? Or, is it punishing you for not standing up to your right to be a unique individual, with unique ideas that don't always conform to the norm?

In summery, Aquarius dis-eases are often a result of excess risk-taking and unpredictable behaviors.

PISCES (Feet): Developing faith in an unknown future is your major lesson in life. You need to believe in something greater than yourself. You need to know that you are safe even when your world seems dark. You are a dreamer; you are creative; you are a little naive.

Life challenges you to make a commitment to something having value to others regardless of the material value this commitment offers you in return, or the level of recognition that is given to you as a contributor. On the other hand, it is important that you don't invite people to "walk all over you."

With faith as a foundation, you will stand tall. Lack of faith weakens the very foundation of who you are, as symbolized by Pisces' rulership of the feet. If you have problems with your feet, maybe its time to examine your faith and the strength of your spiritual foundations. Fear, doubt or past failure, when left unattended, can fester until they weaken the strength of your base.

The sensitive, creative, yet evasive tendency of this sign can also result in a sensitivity to drugs or alcohol. Altering the psychic balance creates distortion and eventually dissolves the spiritual, psychological foundations upon which your life stands. Work to enhance your compassion without taking on the problems of the world, learn to serve without losing your ego and accept with faith that tomorrow's sun will shine even if yesterday's weather was foggy.

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It is not my intention to imply that the simple concepts introduced in this article can, or should be, applied when evaluating serious physical diseases or handicaps. Some things won't change regardless of how we alter our attitudes and behaviors.  We can, however, change how we let these problems affect us. Likewise, no one should use astrology as a means of physical diagnosis unless s/he also has a medical background. I do believe, however, that there are health conditions that people CAN fix by making changes in lifestyle or attitude. In these cases, astrology can be very helpful by pointing out what energies can be used for self-healing.

I also encourage you to listen to what you are saying. It's possible that when you tell your unconscious that someone is making you ill, your unconscious will take you seriously and unfortunately quite literally. If someone is pulling your leg, don't be surprised if you lose your balance. If someone is a pain in your backside, it might be more than simple coincidence that you find yourself purchasing Preparation H. Always remember, thoughts are things.

It is equally important to realize that all charts contain all twelve astrological signs. If you have a copy of your horoscope, and you are suffering from a physical "nuisance," find where the sign that rules the complaint is located in your chart. The house cusp it occupies will enlighten you to the specific experience in your life that is causing you physical distress. For example, if you suffer from frequent headaches, find the house cusp in your chart ruled by Aries and strive to function more independently in the area of life described by this house. Perhaps Aries is on your 10th house of career. If you feel hemmed in or unable to function independently in your profession, headaches could be the result. Changing professions or taking on a more independent role could be your cure.

Web page Copyright © 2000 Joanne Wickenburg. All rights reserved--Most recent revision September 200