Understanding Fixed Signs in Astrology

    Understanding Fixed Signs in Astrology

    Astrology has many parts, and in order to get the full picture, it’s important to study different aspects of the practice. Most people think of astrology as merely referring to your sun sign — the sign that you’re probably most familiar with. However, your astrological personality and horoscope are dependent on much more than simply your sun sign. Your birth chart, which demonstrates where each planet was in relation to the 12 zodiac constellations at the moment of your birth, provides greater insight.

    Knowing other information associated with your sun signs (and other important signs/placements such as moon and rising) will provide deeper comprehension of yourself and others in your life. Light your Taurus candle and prepare to learn more about the four fixed signs and how modality impacts every sign in the zodiac.

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    When we refer to “fixed signs,” we’re talking about a sign's modality. What exactly is modality? It symbolizes how certain signs behave and react to different situations. There are three types of modality: fixed, cardinal, and mutable. 

    Taurus, Leo, Scorpio, and Aquarius are the four fixed signs, but what are fixed signs’ meanings? Modality can impact signs differently depending on that sign's personality and additional factors like ruling elements and planets. 

    What Does Modality Mean?

    Modality refers to the way that we walk through life: how we react to certain situations, the way we behave, how we navigate life. And, of course, these modalities are impacted by the other signs that exist in your birth chart. 

    For the simplest breakdown of the three modalities, think of it this way: cardinal signs are action-oriented and embrace change; mutable signs are go-with-the-flow; and fixed signs are, well, fixed in their ways. They are less adaptable to change and prefer structure and routine.

    However, each fixed sign reacts to this modality differently as their own personalities and other factors impact their experience. 

    Which Signs Are Fixed Signs

    Which Signs Are Fixed Signs?

    Taurus, Leo, Scorpio, and Aquarius are the four fixed signs. The fixed signs fall in the middle of a season — Taurus during spring, Leo during summer, Scorpio during fall, and Aquarius during winter. Because all four of these signs are fixed, they share some similarities, making it easy for them to get along and form a friendship or relationship. However, the characteristics of each individual sign can impact relationships and interactions. 

    How Does Modality Impact Signs and Personalities?

    To understand fixed signs’ meanings, we need to understand modality. As we mentioned above, modality influences our reactions and attitude towards life. Simply put, modality represents your overall vibe. Stubbornness is one of the characteristics often associated with fixed signs, but there is much more to this modality. Fixed signs are determined and resolute, almost always sticking to their goals and plans. Cardinal signs, on the other hand, may be more likely to start a project only to abandon it a week later for a new objective that’s caught their attention.

    What Are Fixed Signs’ Meanings?

    Fixed signs are often defined by several characteristics:

    • Hardworking
    • Determined
    • Strong
    • Stubborn
    • Brave
    • Structured
    • Creative
    • Dedicated
    • Headstrong
    • Independent

    This list does not completely define every fixed signs’ meaning, but it does give a greater sense of what makes these signs tick. The word “fixed” is key to understanding this modality’s impact. These four signs are often stuck in their ways — but that is not necessarily a negative trait. 

    They often appreciate a good routine and seek structure in their life to help set their expectations and achieve their goals. If you’re a fixed sign and you have trouble with organization, perhaps you need to implement a more rigid routine into your life to help stay on track with tasks. Light a match to your Leo candle, write down some goals, and figure out a routine that can help scratch your fixed sign’s itch for structure and order. 

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    How Modality Affects Different Signs


    Dates: April 20 to May 20

    Symbol: Bull

    Element: Earth

    Ruling Planet: Venus

    As symbolized by the bull, Taurus gets its reputation for being headstrong from its fixed modality. Some of Taurus’ most defining characteristics are patience, kindness, and loyalty— though they can have a tendency to bouts of lethargy. Many of these traits tie into their modality. Fixed signs are very stuck in their ways, meaning once they’ve decided that someone in their life is worthy of their attention and affection, they will remain loyal and true to them — unless proven wrong. But, Taurus and other fixed signs don’t often like being wrong.

    In fact, fixed signs like Taurus will often debate their point into the ground, even when it’s clear that they’re on the losing side. This is another example of how their stubbornness manifests. If you understand how to communicate with a fixed sign when it comes to disagreements, you’ll have an easier time talking to your Taurus partner or friend if you broach the subject from a position of support. Taurus’ stubborn nature often stems from that fear of change that fixed signs often experience. Allow your partner or friend to know that you understand their side and try to reach a compromise by emphasizing that you have that person’s best interest in mind.

    Taurus’ susceptibility to lethargy isn’t a bad thing. Taurus’ merely prefer the finer things in life — like indulging in good wine and relaxing on the couch to watch a movie with a Taurus candle burning. But, sometimes this inclination for indulging can become too routine for a fixed sign, which is why it’s important for Tauruses to include healthy habits in their regular routines, too.

    Fixed Sign Leo


    Dates: July 23 to August 22

    Symbol: Lion

    Element: Fire

    Ruling Planet: The Sun

    Much like the sun, Leos are the center of their own universe (and often many other peoples!). They march to the beat of their own drum, and they always know how to make an entrance into a party. Your Leo friend is the one you call when you want to have a big night out because they always have an invite to the hottest parties in town. 

    Ruled by the element of fire, Leo is a bit of a conundrum. Fire is the sign of exploration, passion, and new adventures, and yet as a fixed sign, one would expect Leo to crave stability and structure. These two aspects of Leo’s personality work together to make this sign unique. Leos are still adventurous and curious, always searching for the next thrilling experience. However, they tend to be fixed in their beliefs, much like Taurus, and fixed in their personalities. Ever the charismatic performer in the spotlight, Leo embraces its fixed sign meaning and often becomes the bonfire we all gather around for warmth and enjoyment. 


    Dates: October 23 to November 21

    Symbol: Scorpion

    Element: Water

    Ruling Planet: Mars

    Water sign Scorpio is often mistaken for a fire sign, but the Scorpion feels those deep emotions typical of a water sign — they just keep them behind a mysterious facade. This is part of Scorpio’s allure. People are often enthralled by Scorpios because they can’t quite figure them out. While this is often Scorpio’s goal when they put up their emotional wall, their greatest wish is that someone will understand them and find a way past that wall without being let in.

    They crave affection and seek a partner who can simply understand and connect to them on an intuitive level. Scorpios themselves are highly intuitive, exhibiting an almost eerie ability to sense people’s emotions and intentions. 

    Their fixed sign nature can sometimes make it difficult for them to let down that emotional barrier — even when they want to. They are committed to protecting themselves by all means necessary. Other times, their fixed nature may lead them to getting stuck on certain emotions that they can’t let go of. If you are close with a Scorpio, encouraging them to open up about their emotions and recognize when they are clinging to things that no longer serve them can help bring greater peace to their daily existence.

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    Fixed Sign Aquarius


    Dates: January 20 to February 18

    Symbol: Water Bearer

    Element: Air

    Ruling Planet: Uranus

    Known as the humanitarians of the zodiac, this air sign is all about eccentricity for the sake of eccentricity. Never call an Aquarian “weird” as an insult — they’ll only be flattered. This sign is drawn to strange and also ruled by a passion to fight for causes that are close to them — whether it’s ending world hunger or fighting to expand women’s rights.

    As an air sign, Aquarius does have a reputation of having their heads in the clouds sometimes, but that’s only because they’re dreaming up the next big idea to change the world. All of these quirky characteristics combined may make it difficult to believe that Aquarius is a fixed sign, but it’s true. 

    Aquarians’ fixed nature is most prevalent in their humanitarian endeavors and personal beliefs. Aquarius can get quite passionate and worked up about a particular issue that they feel is unjust or underrepresented. Once they have established this belief, it becomes internalized to the point where Aquarius believes it to be a universal truth. This can cause Aquarius to become quite impassioned about their individual beliefs, so it’s important to give the Aquarius in your life a reality check from time to time.

    Though Aquarius is known as a free-spirited personality, being a fixed sign means they do value a certain level of Type-A organization and a desire for a certain level of control.

    This desire, combined with their independence, often leads them into leadership positions.

    February Ninth Aquarius Candle

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    Learning the Fixed Signs’ Meanings

    Modality can play an intriguing role in every sign's expression of their personality. Even signs that fall under the same modality — such as fixed signs Taurus, Leo, Scorpio, and Aquarius — will have this trait manifest in different ways. For the down-to-earth Taurus, this might mean they struggle with going outside of their comfort zone in their day-to-day life. For the spontaneous Aquarius, being a fixed sign might mean clinging to one’s ideas without taking a step back. However, a fixed modality also offers many strengths, such as strong organizational skills, good leadership capability, and fierce loyalty.


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