The Astrology of Love: Synastry
Relationship analysis, or synastry, is a fascinating branch of astrology. I always find it so interesting to note how different personalities play together, and how one personality might find so-and-so a perfect match whilst another personality might find the same so-and-so intensely irritating!
Common misconceptions about synastry are that certain sun signs ‘go well’ together, and others do not. Sometimes people also mistakenly believe the same about moon signs, or that the sign on the cusp of the 7th house is the sun sign of your dream partner. None of these things are actually true. There are many factors to be taken into account when practising synastry, so let’s take a look at some of the major ones.
Astrology Relationship Myths
First of all, let’s dispel the myth that certain signs ‘go’ well with certain others and do not ‘go’ well with the rest. That is not the case, whether we are talking about Sun Signs, Moon Signs, Mars signs or any other planets. Humans are subtle creatures, and it is vital to look at the two natal charts as a whole before reaching any conclusions about who ‘goes’ well with whom. It is true – very, very broadly – that signs of the same element interact well with one another. However, it is not true – even broadly – to say that signs from different elements do not ‘get on’. A lot of people think, for instance, that fire and water do not go well together, because water ‘puts out’ the fire. Fair enough, but if you think a little more deeply about it, you will see also that this can be a wonderful combination – water dampens fire’s flame sufficiently to get rid of the brashness and aggressiveness, whilst fire warms water enough to display some real passion and excitement. Most things in astrology cut both ways.
It is also important to remember that most of us have planets in many different signs, in varying strengths, and that our personalities are made up of the blending of all of these factors. Even in a chart which is very strongly Taurean (or whatever) there will be modifying influences.
Strongest Factors in Astrological Compatibility
So where do we start in assessing the astrological compatibility of two people via their natal charts? Well, we have to consider in each chart where we can find the qualities that generally make a relationship work – rapport, good communication, sympathy, empathy, tolerance, give and take and so forth. I like to do this first of all by considering each natal chart individually.
If we start with the Sun and the Ascendant – these represent our personalities, and so are a good general starting point to assess the subject’s general temperament. The Moon is important in synastry, but not from the point of view of whether the two Moon signs ‘go together’ or not. The Moon represents our emotions, instincts and reactions, and so tells us how this person reacts to a partner – how moody or changeable they are, and how empathetic.
Venus represents love and affection, and also possessions (which are closely linked – think of the squabbles over domestic items when a partnership breaks down). The position of Venus will tell us how demonstrative, affectionate and romantic each person is, as well as how materially-conscious or not. Mars represents our physical energy and the sexual urge. Whichever of the two partners has the stronger Mars is likely to take the lead sexually. Mars also tells us how strong the sex drive is in each person. Saturn is also an important planet in synastry, telling us as it does where each person feels restricted, and, when the two charts are compared, how and whether each person is likely to restrict the other, and how they will deal with joint responsibilities.
Mercury (mental rapport, shared intellectual interests), Jupiter (joint enthusiasms and growth), and the house positions of Uranus (possible tension and disruption), Neptune (romance, but also deceit) and Pluto (ability to work through issues, transformation) then bring up the rear as I consider the planets in each individual’s chart. That process finished, I have a good idea of how each person feels, thinks, and is likely to look at their partner.
There is much more work still to do before a synastry analysis could be considered complete, but this is a good starting point in assessing astrological compatibility.