Am I a Virgo or Leo? – The Changing Signs Error, Part 2

This is the second part of my response to the reactions to an interview with astronomer Parke Kunkle, who led folks to believe that their Sun sign was changing and that a 13th sign would be introduced.

As I mentioned, most of the people who contacted me, frantically asking if they needed to think of themselves as a different Sun sign, were Virgos. I think that might be because one trait of Virgo energy is to want things well sorted, and correctly labeled, and in the right place.  Most of my Virgo queries were from people who loved being Virgo, and the thought that they were “actually” a different sign was very disconcerting. Other people, a couple of Virgos and those born under a few other signs, were interested in exploring what their “new” sign meant for them.

So today let’s talk a bit about Sun Sign Astrology, which is quite prevalent and popular. If you read my previous post, then you know that on the day you were born, the Sun was in a particular position in the sky, and that behind the Sun was a particular constellation. Which constellation depends on what time of year you were born. If you were born at the beginning of the year, before the 21st of January, then the Sun was in the sign of Capricorn. That makes you a Capricorn. If you were born in the middle of the year, say in the first week of July, then you are a Cancer. Your Sun sign is determined by the time of year you were born.

Because each sign has a certain energy, and certain human traits are found in people born under that energy, there is a lot one can say about Capricorns, or Virgos, or any of the other signs. There are cookbook-type lists of attributes that people born with their Sun in a particular sign have: Aries people are impatient and energetic, Taurus folks like security and to ponder before leaping into anything, Geminis talk a lot, etc, etc. There is some truth to these things, just as there is a grain of truth behind every stereotype, but that doesn’t mean that every person born under Scorpio is devious and jealous, or that every Piscean is spacey and artistic. There is a wide range of energies for each sign, and if you’ve read any of my work before, you know that I subscribe to the idea that every planet and every sign has a full spectrum of energies, traits, behaviors, reactions, and ways of moving through the world.

So, it is possible, with a view to the wide range of energies for any given Sun sign, to craft not only an idea of who you are if you were born under that sign, but also how you might react to the current planetary positions. That’s what Sun Sign Astrology is about. When you read in the newspaper or on your favorite website the forecast for your Sun sign, what you’re reading is a general idea of how all folks born under that sign might be experiencing the current transits. Oftentimes, if houses are mentioned, those houses are calculated not from your particular birth chart, but from what’s called the Natural Chart, where Aries is in the first house, Taurus in the second, and on through the Zodiac in order.

But here’s the thing. There are 8 other planets and luminaries in standard Western Astrology birth charts, besides just the Sun. There’s the Moon, Venus, Mars, Jupiter, Saturn, Uranus, Neptune, and Pluto. Many astrologers also use asteroids such as Chiron, Vesta, Juno, Hera, and Pallas Athena in their charts. There are the Lunar Nodes and the Part of Fortune. Each one of those heavenly bodies or astronomical points gives information as to who you are and how you see and deal with the world. Sun Sign Astrology doesn’t give the whole picture, not at all. It gives a lot, but nothing like a personal birth chart.

So when my worried Virgo readers contacted me, I was not only able to calm their fears about losing their perfectly good Sun sign label, I was also able to remind them that there are many things that make up a person, not just the time of year in which they were born. That worked for the other folks, too, the ones who thought it might be interesting to explore being the sign that comes before theirs in the Tropical Zodiac. If you like your Sun sign, and feel that the descriptions of it fit you perfectly, you are completely right to continue to think of yourself as one of that sign’s children. If you think there are other parts of your psyche with which you might identify more strongly, and that your Sun sign has never really quite told the whole story, well that’s true, too.

The best way to really understand all the different parts of yourself and how they mesh together is to get a reading from a consulting astrologer. The astrologer will tell you where each planet was in the sky the moment you took your first breath. They will explain the energies of that planet, in that Zodiac sign, and in that house of your birthchart. This is a very in-depth kind of reading, giving you much more information that simple Sun sign horoscopes can provide.

This is probably the point at which I’m supposed to remind you that I, too, am a consulting astrologer, and that if you want such an in-depth reading, you can feel free to contact me. You can also check out my still-growing website at Oneness Astrology With Ki.

I hope this helps clear up the misunderstanding about Sun signs changing, and that you have a better idea of how Western Astrology works, and why chart readings can give you lots more information that Sun sign horoscopes. Please feel free to add to the discussion in the comment section.

About astronée

Renée is a professional astrologer. She has studied Astrology for 20 years, and is currently doing readings in person, via phone, and via Skype. She takes classes at the Centre for Psychological Astrology in London when she can get there, and teaches her own basic Astrology classes in the San Francisco Bay Area. She is the director of the Café Aquarius Astrology Center in Emeryville, CA, and the astrologer in The OptiMystics, a triple guidance reading partnership. Visit her website at
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2 Responses to Am I a Virgo or Leo? – The Changing Signs Error, Part 2

  1. Randi Vans says:

    HELLO Renée, I am a concerned Virgo, confused about whether or not I’m a Leo. I hate that I have such a fascination about this, but I’d prefer to know which one. I find it hilarious that most Virgos are obsessed with this…maybe we actually are Virgos haha. Anyway, 6 years ago in high school, my professor told us about another sign and when he looked me up on this interesting software, he said I was a leo. My birthday is september 10, 1991, born at 11am-ish.

    • astronée says:

      Randi, in Western Astrology, you are definitely a Virgo. If your high school teacher was using Vedic (East Indian) Astrology information, that might be why he thought you were a Leo. Different types of Astrology use different ways of looking at the constellations. (Read both of the posts I put up to explain why this gets confused.) All of them have very accurate ways of interpreting the cosmic energy that was happening when you took your first breath in this incarnation (or, more simply, when you were born.) In Vedic Astrology, the position of the Sun is not as important as the position of the Moon. In Western Astrology, our “signs” are dependent on where the Sun was in the sky when you were born.

      You don’t have to be worried about what your “Sun sign” is. It’s just information about your ego, your sense of self, and your purpose in the world. You are living your life, and if one person thinks the Sun was in Leo and another thinks it was in Virgo, that doesn’t matter. Of course, as an astrologer (a Western one), I believe that knowing the information about the positions of the planets when you were born can help you become more self-aware. It can help you use your gifts and deal with your challenges better. And as I said in my post, the Sun is only one of many planets/luminaries that astrologers use to interpret your birth chart. there’s a lot of information to be considered.

      If you’d like to get a full natal chart reading, feel free to check out my website at , and contact me. I do Skype readings. We can go over all the lovely details, which will make your Virgo energy really happy. :^)

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