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The Aspects in Astrology

Aspects are angles between any two of the planets, the Ascendant, Descendant, Midheaven or Imum Coeli. They measure the type of relationship that occurs therein. Every aspect is unique because it describes an intricate component of the chart and therefore the individual. Interpretation must take place only after determining the nature of the planets and signs involved within the context of the individual’s chart. The aspects are ultimately descriptions of the dynamics of the personality.

Aspects are categorized in terms of how they affect the individual.

The planets that form an aspect don’t have to be the exact number of degrees apart in order for an aspect to exert its influence. There is an amount of inexactitude or tolerance that is acceptable. Exact aspects will, of course, be stronger than those moving out of range. If we assign a degree of variation, it will be + or – the same degree of variation in both directions. For example, in a major aspect such as on opposition, the orb of 10° would mean 170° (180° – 10°) to 190° (180° + 10°).

Here is a list of Orbs for the Aspect Categories:
Major Aspects: Orb of 10°
Medium Aspects: Orb of 5°
Minor Aspects: Orb of 2°

Dynamic Aspect

Energy within the individual is not flowing harmoniously, creating tension and urging action to change or at least increase awareness of the problem. The challenge is to develop a harmonious outlet for the tension so that the inner imbalance is compensated for and eventually corrected.

Some Dynamic Aspects:
The Square (90°)
The Opposition (180°)
The Quincunx (150°)
The Conjunction (0°) depending on the harmony of planets and signs involved
The Semi-Sextile (30°) depending on the harmony of planets and signs involved

Harmonious Aspect

The dimensions of the person, as described by the aspect, work harmoniously and supportively. The soul has talents and knowledge that it is able to express with ease and spontaneity. There is potential for excellence, but the ease of expression of the aspect’s energies does not necessitate development.

Some Harmonious Aspects:
Trine (120°)
Sextile (60°)
The Conjunction (0°) depending on the harmony of planets and signs involved
The Semi-Sextile (30°) depending on the harmony of planets and signs involved

Major Aspects

Conjunction (0°): Traditionally describes a combination of planets working in a unified expression. Usually one predominates and the stronger determines the way it will operate. It signifies action rather than passivity.

Square (90°): Involves planets located in inharmonious elements (e.g. Fire and Water). It indicates a tension that demands resolution through some plan of action. It produces conflict of direction and purpose.

Trine (120° ): Planets involved work harmoniously and provide creativity, ease of expression and even good luck. The planets involved are commonly in signs of the same element (e.g., Aries & Leo = Fire) and therefore describe areas of life that are naturally well integrated. However, the consequent absence of tension provides no call to action and has been associated with laziness.

Opposition (180°): Planets are located in harmonious elements, allowing for some shared basis of experience and expression. This aspect produces great tension and confusion, making it difficult to pursue a solution.

Medium Aspects

Sextile (60°): Its influence is mild, describing a natural, harmonious planetary relationship because it involves signs of harmonious elements (e.g., Fire and Air).

Quincunx (150°): Often regarded as an irritant. It usually involves signs that are in inharmonious elements (e.g., Fire and Water) and different modalities (e.g. Cardinal and Fixed). The planets form a dependent relationship to achieve expression and have the capacity to interfere with each other. This makes it difficult to integrate the experience and is often a source of aggravation. The resolution lies in making a patient, subtle adjustment to the areas of life involved.

Minor Aspects

Semi-Sextile (30°): It is of minimal influence, but the planets do interact and the energy builds up. It creates a persistent force that is either gently harmonious or weakly disruptive, depending on the planets and signs involved.

Semi-Square (45°): It acts like a weaker version of the Square, providing tension and unrest that prompts you to change. Because it describes less disharmony within the individual it requires less work than a square.

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