The Zodiacs – Signs in the Stars

Zodiac is derived from the Greek word meaning circle of animals, and is the name given to each of the twelve divisions in the Earth’s orbit around the sun. In about 500 B.C., the Greeks began using their zodiac signs, replicating the way in which the Mesopotamians had used them in a religious manner. Mesopotamian priests would track the sun, the moon and Venus through the sky, as these heavenly bodies were representations of gods and their journey directly affected our planet’s seasons.

Ancient civilisations believed that the sun was revolving around the Earth, instead of the other way around, and Greek astronomers recognised that it took twelve lunar cycles (months) to get back to its original position in the sky. The seasonal progressions were then linked to 12 constellations which the sun traversed, and they were given names based on when the sun was passing through.

The zodiac signs are divided into four groups:

Fire Signs: Aries, Sagittarius & Leo

Water Signs: Cancer, Scorpio & Pisces

Air Signs: Libra, Aquarius & Gemini

Earth Signs: Capricorn, Taurus & Virgo

Astrologists have always believed that there are answers in the heavens, to everything that happens on Earth. Ancient Egyptians are the first civilisation that has recorded evidence of astrologists using the stars as omens. Since then, many societies have used the zodiac as a method of predicting personality traits and the way in which a person’s life will progress.

Gemini (May 20-June 21)

Gemini is the third astrological sign in the zodiac, and its symbol is the twins. The story of the birth of the constellation is derived from the Ancient Greek myth about twin brothers, Castor and Pollux. The boys were fathered by different men, one of whom was the king of the gods, Zeus, who had disguised himself as a swan and seduced their mother, Leda. His son, Pollux, was born a demi-god and, therefore, immortal while Castor remained human. The Dioscuri brothers became known for their good deeds and kind hearts. They would intervene during a crisis, and were regarded as the helpers of other men.

When Castor was mortally wounded during a battle, Zeus gave his son, Pollux, a choice of sharing his immortality with his brother or spending an eternity in Olympus without him. Pollux chose to share, and the twins would split their time between Olympus, when they were immortal, and Hades, during death. To forgo their constant travelling and ensure that they remained together, Zeus made them into the two brightest stars in the constellation Gemini. Through this journey into the stars, the twins became the patrons of travellers as they were now able to light the way.  

Geminis have very straightforward personalities, normally with a volatile temper. They have a high level of versatility and thrive to learn new skills constantly. This works well with their above average creativity and appreciation for arts, history and natural science. On the other hand, their natural intelligence and dislike of monotony dictates that Geminis find it hard to respond well to authority. Despite this they are highly responsible individuals and, like the twins, may have two obviously different aspects of their personality.

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2 thoughts on “The Zodiacs – Signs in the Stars

  1. ‘In about 500 B.C., the Greeks began using their zodiac signs, replicating the way in which the Mesopotamians had used them in a religious manner. ‘
    I suspect it goes much further back than this in Greece – the Homeric songs are written records of an oral tradition dating back to the Bronze Age and Odysseus is a sun representation crossing twelve parts of the sky.

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