Astrology: Sun Sign Scorpio

Pablo Picasso, Blind Minotaur Led by a Girl Through the Night, aquatint, etching and dry point, Spain, 1934. Picasso was a Scorpio, born 25 October 1881.

“Always go too far, because that’s where you’ll find the truth.”

Albert Camus, Scorpio b. 7 November 1913 d. 4 January 1960, author of The Plague, The Fall of Sisyphus, The Stranger

The Sun passes through the astrological sign of Scorpio from ~ October 23 to ~ November 21. A heavy hitter in the zodiac, Scorpio is the embodiment of Fixed Water. Imagine a lake, deep and dark, its shore thick with brambles and deep swampy plants. You are out on the lake for an afternoon. Despite the fact that when you left it was a warm sunny day, somehow all you have experienced while out in your boat is heavy dark clouds and gloom. The hours pass, and perhaps you have been fishing, or napping, or having an argument with your companion, and you realize that it’s time to go. You search the shoreline for your point of entry, but you cannot find it, and a small panic begins to set into your heart, as it is getting late and you have things to do. You have become enchanted with the mood of this place, the deep rolling hills rising from the even deeper, murky waters. Your mood has been so intense, your focus so sustained that you have lost track of time and place, but you feel satisfied as the purpose of your visit was, in fact to hash out dark words and feelings. This is Scorpio, mystifying, brooding and insistent in its heaviness. You have no choice but to consider, to think, to wonder at the depths that surround you. This is familiar territory for Scorpio, though perhaps not so comfortable for others not familiar with these energies. Traditionally, rulership has been assigned to Mars, though modern astrologers choose Pluto as Scorpio’s ruler. In either case, the predominant energy is dense, occasionally aggressive, combative, and imposing; there is little lightheartedness in this company. There is, however, a fundamental need to control, to overcome, to determine and if necessary, to punish and eradicate any perceived error or malfeasance.

All this being said, it is true that Scorpio people get a bad rap. Indeed, they may be prone to dark moods, dramatic pronouncements, have an affinity for things heavy and serious, wince at superficiality and abhor trivialities and silliness, but these are the people you want to have around you when it actually does get serious in your life.  They won’t mince words and give you platitudes.  They won’t hold your hand and say “there, there”.  They will give you the straight goods, no holds barred, and you will be content with this, as it is honesty. The songwriter Billy Joel (himself, interestingly, a Taurus, the sign directly opposite Scorpio) once said, “Honesty is such a lonely word; everyone is so untrue”.  Honesty, and loneliness for that matter, are familiar territory for most Scorpios.  These people are very familiar with living life on the edge, looking down into the inescapable abyss that is life and death, even if those around them either prefer to ignore the abyss, or are simply ignorant that it even exists. Looking at things from a perspective that many people would have to try very hard and dig deep to access, Scorpio is comfortable with what is hard, dark, taboo and unspeakable, and typically, they laugh at it all.  Many people wouldn’t even dare to approach life in the way a Scorpio can – no-holds barred, full frontal, straight up and way down. It’s hard for people to understand this sort of approach, for while thrilling, it can also be exhausting, isolating and unpleasant to always look at the dark side of life. Just ask a Scorpio’s mate, partner or best friend how many times they have thrown their hands up in despair that their beloved Scorpio is always taking things too hard, too heavy, too personally.  But as darkness is explored, its intricacies realized and understood, the levity that results allows for an emotional and spiritual freedom that is rare. It takes a lot of effort, but the strength of character required to achieve that kind of perspective is stock in trade for most Scorpios.  Unfortunately though, as this is Fixed Water, if life has been harder than normal for a Scorpio, and indeed, many Scorpios are prone to make things a little harder than they need to be, a natural kink in the psyche, some twist in the spirit can develop, and a certain particular limping gait will be assumed throughout the lifetime, always obvious to those around, creating a nuance of danger and mystery around the Scorpio native. But if it weren’t for those twisted, gnarly trees in the forest, how would we ever know what it really means to be straight and true?

Scorpio’s polarity sign is Taurus, and Taurus can offer lessons in being grounded, seeking stability, in appreciating the beauty of the here and now, rather than always looking into the shadows for the bogeyman. Scorpio can benefit from the pure sensuality and reverence of beauty of Taurus, finding pleasure in the material simply for pleasure’s sake, letting go of any need to control, dominate or otherwise subdue. Sometimes you just need to have some good, simple enjoyment, Scorpio, so keep it in mind that when the darkness grows too deep, all you have to do is plant your feet on solid ground for a while to find some relief.

Scorpio Tarot Correspondence – Major Arcana XIII: Death (Rider Waite Smith Tarot)
  • Key Words: intense, emotional, determined, thorough, passionate, powerful, intuitive, stubborn, infuriating, secretive, jealous, possessive, sexual, driven, deep, analytic, extreme, protective, vindictive, private, dramatic
  • Rulership: Mars (traditional), Pluto (modern)
  • Modality: Fixed Water
  • Polarity: Negative feminine
  • Gemstone: opal, bloodstone, malachite, topaz, vermillion, snakestone
  • Metal: iron
  • Tarot: Death
  • Color: dark and dull brown, dark red, bright red, green-blue
  • Deities: Ares, Mars, Kundalini, Hades, Pluto
  • Flora: blackthorn, brambles, cactus, heather, leeks, onions, poisonous plants, thistles, swamp plants, bushy trees and shrubs, woad, wormwood
  • Fauna: reptiles, insects, crustaceans, eagles, scorpions, snakes, wolf
  • Famous Scorpio Personalities: Christopher Columbus, Leon Trotsky, Martin Luther, Marie Curie, Marie Antoinette, Bill Gates, Joseph Biden, Indira Gandhi, Pablo Picasso, John Gotti, Hilary Clinton, Peter Jackson, Leonardo Di Caprio, Charles Manson, Georgia O’Keefe, Paracelsus, Emma Stone, Albert Camus, Bram Stoker, Katy Perry, Prince Charles, Anne Hathaway, Matthew McConaughey, Adam Driver, Ivanka Trump, Owen Wilson, Tilda Swinton, Neil Young, Joaquin Phoenix, Margaret Atwood, Kendall Jenner, Emilia Clarke