When it comes to the 12 zodiac signs, there are four different elements: fire, earth, air and water. However, when you break down each element, you’re left with three unique categories.
These zodiac signs have their own unique strengths, weaknesses and modes of operation. That is because each prospective zodiac sign takes place at a different time in the year and embodies a separate aspect of that specific season.
The Earth’s yearly cycle gives us four seasons: spring, summer, autumn and winter. By aligning the zodiac signs in their correct order, we see that the year kicks off (in the Northern Hemisphere) with fiery Aries season and reaches completion with sensitive Pisces season. When referencing these turns in season, we find something rather remarkable and beautiful — that the zodiac signs also mirror the change of seasons throughout the year.
Zodiac sign qualities (also called modalities or triplicities) refer to the different stages in the year’s seasonal cycle. Cardinal zodiac signs start a season. Fixed zodiac signs embody each season fully. Mutable zodiac signs conclude each season and help to transition us into the next one.
Yet there are many fascinating aspects about the zodiac sign qualities beyond just this concept, as a modality also gives insight into how someone interacts with others and groups, too.
Remember: Astrology isn’t just about predicting life events, although it does that well. It is about better understanding who we are and how we connect together.
CARDINAL ZODIAC SIGNS
The Cardinal zodiac signs are Aries, Cancer, Libra and Capricorn.
Each of these zodiac signs kicks off a season. Aries begins spring. Cancer starts summer. Libra launches autumn. Capricorn announces winter. Just as they sound the alarm that the new period has arrived, these people are often the ones that make things happen and charge forward to take the lead. They are often the “doers” who are unafraid to initiate new cycles, whether that is professionally, personally, socially or intellectually. They have an infectious enthusiasm that often allows them to rally people to a cause and start organizing a journey.
Because of this, Cardinal zodiac signs tend to have leadership qualities. Their ambition and ideas are important to them as they recreate the world to match this vision. However, one trouble spot for these people is that while they often provide the spark to get things moving, they often lack the energy or follow-through to see each initiative reach the end.
FIXED ZODIAC SIGNS
The Fixed zodiac signs are Taurus, Leo, Scorpio and Aquarius.
These signs follow the Cardinal signs, taking the next phase of each prospective season. Taurus strengthens spring. Leo radiates summer. Scorpio fuels autumn. Aquarius embraces winter. Fixed zodiac signs are the purest embodiment of their season, as we fully appreciate the beauty of that time of year and are centered within it. We have gotten used to it and recognize that we’re in the height of this seasonal period. Fixed zodiac signs are the powerhouses who have the endurance to take ideas and make them reach completion. They have the stamina to see things through, often because they are so focused that they can achieve anything.
To them, failure isn’t an option because they possess tremendous resources of patience, work ethic and effort. These people are also often immensely loyal and trustworthy because they are unwavering in their beliefs and devotion.
However, one area of contention for these people is that they are also very stubborn. They do not like change and have a very difficult time handling transitions. They like things as they are because they put so much of their hearts and souls into what they believe in.
MUTABLE ZODIAC SIGNS
The Mutable zodiac signs are Gemini, Virgo, Sagittarius and Pisces.
Each of these zodiac signs completes a seasonal cycle and helps us to transition to the next one. Gemini ties up spring. Virgo shifts us out of summer. Sagittarius releases autumn. Pisces concludes winter. During these periods of the year, we reflect on what we experienced and learned in this past period — but start to look onward to where we will go next. We prepare for the transition and begin to realize that it’s time to move on.
These cycles are the “harvest” of each season. In this regard, Mutable zodiac signs have an innate ability to be flexible and adaptable where other people are not. They recognize that change is inevitable, so it is better to flow with it rather than fight it. These people are the ones who are masters of multi-tasking, usually moving fluidly between many projects, situations and relationships. They have heightened awareness and intuition about how to edit their lives, as well as polish things off. Freedom is important to them, so they can explore the many options before them. Because they are so multi-talented, they can excel in many arenas.
However, because they are always paying attention to so many different things at once, they can be scattered individuals. This lack of complete focus is an area for them to master.
THE BLEND OF QUALITIES
You are not just one zodiac quality — just as you are unlikely to consist of just one astrological element. In fact, you are likely a mixture of several modalities. When referencing your natal chart, be sure to look at where your planets fall, as well as your Ascendant. By doing so, you’ll find the dominant energies that make you who you are.
Kyle Thomas is a globally recognized pop culture astrologer who has been featured in Cosmopolitan Magazine, ABC Television, Hulu, Bustle, Elite Daily, House Beautiful, Marie Claire, YahooNews, MSN and more. He is known for his cosmic guidance for celebrities, business executives and prominent influencers. His work harnesses the power of the stars in regards to entertainment lifestyle and trends affecting people worldwide. For more information, visit KyleThomasAstrology.com.