What is your rising sign? (tropical zodiac western astrology)
The sign that appears over the eastern horizon (left side of circle) of an accurate birth chart shows the modus operandi by which you orient yourself to life. It is your personality, your mode of expression.
Only planets in close, strong aspect to the Ascendant (of the correct chart) can alter the typical range of qualities for any rising sign. That means conjunctions, parallels, squares, oppositions, and contra-parallels. (In some cases conjunctions elsewhere in which both planets are sextile, trine, or quincunx the Asc can do this.)
Aries Rising people are action oriented and go about things with energy and a can-do attitude, tending to impose personal agendas on others, or conversely, choosing pursuits that promote and depend upon self for success. Alert, pushy, persistent. Tendency to lead by courageous action. They are not intimidated by conflict. Many are risk-takers who go marching forward into new areas often avoided by others. Tendency to insert themselves or butt in.
Aries rising most typically shows a bony or chiseled ovate head that in men can have a skeletal suggestion. This ‘bony’ appearance is most often due to less subcutaneous fat on the face, at least until weight gain changes it. The cheekbones may be prominent as with Leo. The jawline can be narrower, but most often will be stronger than the other cardinal signs, and the neck is slimmer than normal. Sometimes the jawbone juts out from the face before tapering to the chin, breaking the usual rounded ovate outline.
Their energy is quick, courageous, direct and forward-moving (unless water or earth factors dampen the overall energy). The voice is normally louder or sharper than those around.
The eyes are active and can have a sharpness or brightness to them and there is a demeanor of energy. They eyebrows may be bushier or thicker than normal. The men can be rugged with a jutting or bony chin, which sometimes identifies them more than the outline of the face. The personality is geared for action. These people lead with their initiative and can be quite bossy, “butt-inskies,” and self-promoting. They tend to impose themselves on their surroundings with their agenda, getting others to do work for them. Many of them natural business builders, inventors, entrepreneurs, because they are action-oriented, forward moving, and aren’t held back by potential risks.
Aries rising celebrities: David Souter, Helen Reddy, Dick Gregory, Pete Rose, Lynn Redgrave
Taurus Rising people are generally more passive than either Gemini or Aries, operating at a slower pace and are more down-to-earth, peaceable, practical. It is this more passive, pacifist nature that separates them from the Aries rising personality. They are generally skeptical about abstractions that cannot be materially demonstrated or explained simply and clearly. They tend to be slow starters and late bloomers and have a knack for avoiding useless wastes of energy. Generally likable, nice and polite, and generally avoids arguments and conflicts. Just don’t get pushy with them or they will withdraw, or on rare occasions even explode.
Taurus rising shows a head and face that is softly rectangular to squarish, and eyes to match: often brown, rounded, full, heavily lidded with long lashes and with a more steady gaze than Aries types.
Taurus rising energy is generally slow, deliberate, pacifying, sensible and grounded (unless fire or air factors show prominence). The voice is normally soft and pleasant, and speech consistent.
The nose of the Taurus rising person tends to be fleshy or a cute button nose. The neck or throat is thicker than normal. The height is usually short to average. The energy is much slower in tempo than the Aries types and they are accommodating, but not easily pushed. In fact, they will resent it. They prefer routines. They are generally pleasant looking if not beautiful, and their personalities will match. Deliberate, easy, leisurely, steady and natural is how they operate. They are the stabilizers of the zodiac and can be calming and soothing during a crisis. You will rarely find them very up or down, but can emote if needed to entertain.
Taurus Rising Celebrities: Sigourney Weaver, Joe Pesci, Melanie Griffith, Daryl Hannah, Mariah Carey
Gemini Rising shows a lot of lateral movement of thought and action of a multi-talented (or at least multi-interested) person, someone who scatters their mind and energies much more than the placid Taurus type. They tend to talk with their hands as much as their mouths. Readily interested and easily distracted, they are often wonderful comics and mimics, as they are gifted with communication, writing and mental processing of every kind. Education – formal or self-guided is important to them. Tendency to flirt. Clever. Debates for the fun of it.
Gemini rising shows a narrower head that is often longer than normal. It can be rounded, being narrow at top and bottom. Sometimes it is normal in length, but tapers to a narrow chin. There is often a high forehead, and the eyes can be wider apart than average. The nose is very often prominent, but the most distinguishing feature very often is a set of fleshy ear lobes that tilt outwards a bit from the bottom of the ears.
Their energy is generally lateral, even scattered, receptive, communicative, quick and variable (unless enough earth or water factors calm it down). The voice may alternate quiet and louder, rising and falling easily in pitch or volume.
The eyes and movements of the hands are quick and varied, and the thinking and speech are quicker and more varied than Cancer or Taurus. They are alert and agile with longer than average limbs, hands and feet. The fingers are generally longer than average. They are talkers and can dominate the communication if confident of their audience. They generally can only be still if their hands and thoughts are focused on a task like writing, typing, or with crafts or artistic creativity. They tend to have intellectual interests, but have too much energy outward into the nervous system to not be physically active, even if only gesturing or walking.
Gemini rising celebrities: Julia Child, Peter Fonda, Edward Snowden, Richard Dean Anderson, Trent Reznor
Cancer Rising expresses the lunar instinct of receptivity, acquisitiveness, nurturing, and reactivity. They can be very sensitive to criticism or rejection, often being thin-skinned and retreating to the protections of family loyalties. What separates them from the Gemini type is their more emotional response to what is around them and the tendency to cling to family first. There is a tendency to be cautious with strangers and hold onto what is familiar, or even be a homebody. Tendency to be slow in letting others get close. The basic personality is emotional and fluctuating in nature, but not necessarily emotive. Many of them desire security and loyalty. Most will naturally withdraw from conflict unless there are strong contraindications in the chart (Sun, Mars). Cycles of the moon affect these people more than others.
The Cancer rising face is generally rounded or oval shaped, but varies more depending on Sun sign and Moon position than other signs. There is a generally a feeling, sympathetic look to the face or a look of caution and hesitation. Some have a cherubic appearance. The lunar energy potentials mean these personalities run the gamut from sweet sensitives who wouldn’t hurt a fly to controlling reactionaries or martyred victims.
Their energy is sensitive, familial. They are usually cautious with strangers, but will tend to look for ways to put them at ease. They can be very in tune with the needs of others and public opinion, but can play puppet or martyr in the face of stronger forces. The voice is generally soft or modest in volume and the speech reticent. This sign is often indicated over Leo on the Ascendant by the distinct tendency for either martyr/victim role or the reticent tendency to mull over words carefully before responding.
The skin is usually soft and the eyes will reflect this softness rather than a sharpness or intensity. These people are generally introverted, looking for a place of respect. Don’t expect strength of logic behind their actions. Empathy and unity are more likely.
Cancer rising celebrities: General Norman Schwarzkopf, The 14th Dalai Lama, Liv Ullman, Jonathan Winters, Edgar Cayce
Leo Rising is distinguished from Virgo and Cancer by its more extroverted approach and its broader shoulders of responsibility and performance. It expresses the solar principle of vitality, authority, ambition, magnanimity and direct creativity. They err on the side of confidence allowing them to take risks the Cancer types do not. They radiate presence and personality. It is rare that they go unnoticed for they almost always let positive, admirable qualities shine. Otherwise they are just dominant, even cruel. Tendency to enjoy being catered to, to be demanding of those who serve them. Does not like to lose any argument or competition.
Leo rising people generally have rectangular or squarish heads. Exceptions will show only when planets aspecting the Asc (or stelliums in other signs) create a modificiation of the typical physicality of fixity.
Honor, integrity, courage, directness and honesty are the values of the balanced Leo rising person. The energy is that of one that wants to be recognized or dealt with. They can have a crude and loud approach (unless the humility of water or earth factors intervene) or a royal bearing, but they won’t be ignored. The voice can be very appealing if soft or commanding if louder. Many are capable of great volumes that resonate from the chest.
The eyes are often prominent features and can be especially attractive and magnetic. There can be a barrel chest with men and large bust with many of the women, but whatever the details, there is a strong, commanding presence or a statuesque look about them. The bones are generally large and the body sturdy, even blocky, but some are taller and more athletic. Some are swaybacked as if pushing out the chest with pride. With many there is an emphasis on upper body while the legs are skinny and knees knobby. They know they can be somebody, but some may stretch too hard in their ambition. They are natural leaders that radiate vitality and magnanimity.
Leo rising celebrities: Mohammad Ali, Katie Holmes, George Carlin, Johnny Depp, Ashley Judd
Virgo Rising expresses the introverted Mercurial personality of a detail-oriented perfectionist or a highly observant, analyst. They are distinguished from genuine Leo types by their more introverted or at least more peculiar mental take on things. They are good at ordering things and are generally attentive with pets and children. There is a tendency for inhibition with a narrowly focused personality and touchy or sensitive nervous system that needs time alone. Writing, analysis and an occupation of service are best suited for these personalities. They need mental insulation from over-stimulation in order to succeed and generally are self-motivated learners.
Virgo rising most often has a narrow or tapering head that is sometimes clearly v-shaped. The cranium can be larger than family members, if only at the occipital area, and the forehead may be higher than normal.
Their energy is introverted, at least early in life, but alternating like other mutable signs, so the voice tends to be soft rather than loud or sharp (unless fire/air factors alter this pattern) and can have a nasal quality. It is oriented towards smaller-scale matters of details, analysis, information, being good polishers or finishers of enterprises begun by others.
The chin may look chopped off short of a full triangle. The nose generally has a pinched bridge and is often straight and down-pointing. The eyes are closer together and smaller than most any Leo rising. They are short to tall, but generally have slender, even wiry bodies, at least when young. In other words, the frame is noticeably narrower than its neighbor, Leo. They are detail-oriented, health-oriented, conscientious, and want to get things right. These people are practical, but opportunistic. They can be physically susceptible and should take measures to maintain their health with exercise, diet, etc. Some have stronger constitutions and are gifted athletes. Their precision will show in their athletic approach. This rising sign is one likely to delay sexual involvement or marriage.
Virgo rising celebrities: Tom Hanks, Nicolas Sarkozy, Woody Allen, Tiger Woods, Jacques Cousteau
Libra Rising is more relational and communicative than its neighbor Scorpio and acts more on the surface with more readiness to change (especially loyalties). They are distinguished from genuine Virgo types by their freer, more relational approach to others. The personality can be quite people-oriented and they are appreciators of beauty and humanity at more of the surface level of form and pleasantries, but will want to have their ideals satisfied. However, there can be a tendency to pre-judge based on resume or outward qualities. Idealists, sometimes perfectionists, their personal indulgences are most often compensated for so as to maintain a pleasing outward appearance. They can be demanding of fairness even if the standard is not even-handed. Many (males especially) are opinionated and enjoy debate.
Libra rising produces a generally rounded, ovate head that is normally smallish, but can be longish. Even the chin tends to be rounded and with a dimple or cleft. Even if the head’s outline is more rectangular, the corners at forehead and jaws will be rounded off nicely.
The energy is initiating and persuasive, people-smart and people-pleasing, aesthetic and tactile, more attuned to others than its fiery counterpart, Aries. The voice can be especially soft or smooth (unless fire factors significantly energize things).
The eyes and mouth are generally well-shaped and attractive, even if they are not models or beauty queens. The eyes are generally light or soft-looking, and in Caucasians can be of mixed color (blue-green, hazel). The skin is normally smooth, soft and complexion good and their faces and bodies are almost always characterized by smooth flowing lines. A slight swayback with many Libra types makes it look as if they are holding back their vulnerabilities. They have good taste and want to enjoy the good life. These people are lovers and people-oriented, initiating friendships easily. Their charm and easy-going approach to people makes an impression. However, many are either indecisive or changeable, or love to argue for kicks. The women especially will adorn themselves and know how to increase their attractiveness with bangles, jewelry and clothing. They can be people-pleasers, indulgent, procrastinating. They lead by persuasion. The men (and some women) often have a knack for mechanical things, machines, computers, etc.
Libra rising celebrities: Venus Williams, Coretta Scott King, Bill Clinton, Nancy Reagan, Sally Field
Scorpio Rising is distinguished from its neighbors by its loner tendencies and its insistence on depth over superficiality. They can be outwardly tough, but inwardly sensitive or spiritual. This is not sentimentality, but the deeper, profounder feelings, almost always held in reserve. Emotional wounds can affect them a long time. They can be intense and driven. There is hardly any in-between. With their avoidance of superficiality and the desire to dig under the surface, they make good researchers. Placidity on the outside hides intensity on the inside. The body language is generally not revealing. Tendency for extremes of experience, and sarcastic retorts.
Scorpio rising shows a generally rectangular head. Exceptions to this facial outline, as always, depend upon aspects to the Ascendant. The head most often has a lower hairline and arched brows. The hair is often wavier or curly in Caucasians.
Their energy is unrevealing about themselves, but penetrating, searching, deep, hidden, intense, magnetic, powerful. The voice is often restrained or obscured with many (especially males) speaking with clenched jaw or through their teeth (ala Clint Eastwood’s characters). Many have strong resonant voices. Speech obscurities or unclarities of other types may show.
The eyes tend to be dark, and there is a tendency for many to wear tinted glasses or cover the eyes with a cap pulled low. The view into a Scorpio rising person is obscured on many levels unless planets like Jupiter alter the Asc/1st house picture. They can be short to tall, but will often be powerfully built or quietly imposing in some way. The overall look tends to be dusky or dark, but they can have very bright eyes, especially lined with a dark ring. The most common build is somewhat blocky, at least once they’ve reached adulthood, but the women can look especially curvy and desirable. A peculiar physical characteristic is a high-waisted appearance even if the legs are short. There can be a tendency to put on a lot of weight very easily. Their deep sensitivity can be either a great asset or cause for ongoing isolation. They can be very magnetic, often even erotic in their outer appeal. They are easily distinguished from Sagittarius or Libra by their private and/or emotional nature.
Scorpio rising celebrities: Margaret Thatcher, Robin Williams, Al Franken, Jim Carrey, Clint Eastwood
Sagittarius Rising contrasts with its neighbors Scorpio and Capricorn with its openness and willingness to communicate, and frequently a jovial approach. Big personality (or at least a wide ranging mind). Loves freedom and knowledge and when younger can be considered hyperactive, nerdy. Their jovial nature shines through in an uplifting, humor-stimulating approach, often generous, even playing the prankster. Honest, charitable and cheerful. Outspoken and truth oriented. Some are prone to expressing their mutable nature through sudden changes in loyalties, even nationalities, flying off to explore or engage the pursuit of truth. Loyalties are to an ideal or some higher or larger truth, not necessarily to a person.
Sagittarius rising produces a longer head than normal, or at least a narrower one, and often with a back-sloping forehead or a noticeable ridge at the brow. Sometimes the head simply tapers from a wider forehead to a narrower chin in a V-shape like Virgo.
The energy is expansive, believing, outgoing, friendly and open, but many have “fled-to-the-head” with their expansive energy. The voice bears the same quality and the laughter can be especially uplifting, infectious and attention getting. The speech can sometimes involve stuttering because of enthusiastic thought energy that is so rapid it cannot be translated into words. At the very least excitability shows unless there is adequate earth, fixity or water to calm things down.
The ears and lobes are long most often and this distinguishes them from Capricorn, which has little if any ear lobes. The distance from mouth to chin is often elongated. The eyes can be especially brilliant, sparkling or twinkling and the energy is close to the surface nearly all the time. They are of the tallest in the zodiac, and the most extroverted. These people love freedom and truth, and are adventurous in their exploration of people, nature, philosophy and lands. They are actively open to the world, optimists, but oddly, often hypochondriac. The build is athletic, slender most often, but sometimes with more width. Even if short, the extroverted nature and breezy, friendly, open attitude gives them away. Their vision is farsighted and they must reach what captures their interest. They are restless and need to move and travel. The women are often tomboys in youth, going along and doing what the boys do, but can settle into womanhood to be quite appealing.
Sagittarius rising celebrities: Ellen Degeneres, John Kerry, Arsenio Hall, Joe Biden, Anne Hathaway
Capricorn Rising is the practical, pragmatic one willing to take on responsibility, prioritize and make long-term plans. They are distinguished from their zodiacal neighbors by their earnestness, sincerity, and general cool, practical approach. They are ambitious and often don’t handle demotion well, opting instead for striking out on their own to improve their lot in business or some side project. They expect respect, and generally earn it. Careful planners, they can often take charge tacitly in contrast to the overt fashion of the Aries type. Tends to honor the old ways, the tried-and-true, and to be ‘salt of the earth’ persons. Can be witty, self-deprecating, sardonic.
Capricorn rising gives a rounded-ovate head, often with compact faces and smaller features. The chin tends to be smallish, rounding off the face. The ears often stick out and/or may show an absence of any lobes. This sometimes creates an elfin or impish look.
The energy is generally formal if not reserved, paternal, ambitious, yet down-to-earth. Sometimes they seem to play the role of Pan, as dancers and mischief-makers. There can be restraint in the voice, in vivid contrast to the volume and exuberance of Sagittarius. Speech can be commanding when necessary, but normally is subdued and thoughtful (unless enough fire or air factors alter it).
The neck is usually thin and/or long. The build is most often slender, even delicate looking, but there is strength and endurance underneath. They can be short to tall, but the seriousness or personal reserve and desire for respect will give them away. Energy is held in reserve for longer lasting, more important achievements, but some can be lusty and earthier. They enjoy work, even thrive on it, and some can become irritable or depressed without a challenge or without the respect and authority they desire. Their reserve can come across as haughtiness to some, but they are generally polite and understand the need for tradition, rules and chain of command. Their active groundedness is actually in the legs so they are generally sure-footed and can be graceful in a subdued sort of way.
Capricorn rising celebrities: Rosa Parks, Megan Fox, Paul Newman, Nat King Cole, Scott Ian
Aquarius Rising is generally as restless as other air signs, but often more leading edge or fringe in some way. They lack the groundedness of the cool, practical Capricorn or the core sensitivity of the Pisces types. Aquarius types express themselves most visibly in unpredictable moments of strong opinions or revealing their sense of justice by taking up causes. This may simply be by reaction in a conversation or by how they orient their lives. They are not satisfied with the ordinary and have a strong drive to know. That can be who they know as well as what they know. They craft unique identities in their own minds, yet strongly rely on group resonance to do so.
There are also the psychic types whose bodies and minds seem to act like antenna and amplifiers of the collective consciousness of the times or for the possibilities of the future. Either way expresses their special insight into human nature. They see the whole picture of human relations, not just the one-to-one surface dynamic of the moment. Tendency to stick up for the underdog, and to be independent or advanced thinkers. Group-minded. Loyal friends.
Aquarius rising normally produces a squarish/rectangular head that can be especially flat at the chin, like a squashed rectangle, but will almost always have at least a squarish or elevated forehead even if the face tapers a bit.
The energy is a contradiction of the outward-directed outside-in (centripetal) dynamic: social but individualistic. Their magnetism draws people because they are different and because they project comfort with being different. This is reflected in the voice, which can distinct and be projected for great effect, but may not be loud one-to-one.
They build tends to be solid or blocky or at least square-shouldered. Often the lower body is solid and strong, but some can be straight-lined figures, plain, androgynous. The height is normally medium to tall. They are distinctive people and can show this in something unusual about their appearance. They have insight into human nature and are strong-willed, intellectual, and very opinionated at times. Many are crowd-pleasing performers. They enjoy being different and revel in it. Justice and being kind to the underdog are common attitudes. Sometimes they themselves are the underdog. Their energy is extroverted, but often in an introverted way, happy to be with others even when quiet. Many of them are complex and identify as much with what must be done in society as with their own personal identity.
Aquarius rising celebrities: Jim Morrison, Janis Joplin, Orlando Bloom, Condoleezza Rice, Karl Marx
Pisces Rising can be highly emotional, creative, even a dreamer. Pisces is distinguished from Aquarius and Aries by its sensitivity, introversion, and spiritual or artistic leanings. In some there is a tendency for drama, but they are far more live-and-let-live and less bossy than their neighboring sign Aries. Generally they are agreeable and forgiving. They empathize easily, and can be easily upset. They are in tune with and sensitive to those in their surroundings. Tendency to be so aware of the many factors that intersect in life situations that they have difficulty making decisions. Generally pacifist, withdrawing from conflict, or goes passive-aggressive.
Pisces rising has a narrow/longish face, sometimes more rounded, resembling the cardinal ovate types.
Their energy is intuitive, subtle and mysterious, but more elusive than secretive. The voice is usually soft and easy, in direct contrast to the pace and sharpness of Aries. This is the rising sign that without bolstering from other chart factors or strengthening aspects to the Ascendant can struggle with identity. They often find this identity in music, the arts, religion, or some form of idealism, and most often have the blurriest edges between self and all else.
The countenance often has a clear appearance that is luminescent. This is not merely the fair skin color of Caucasians, but a particular transparent glow that can even seem angelic or cherubic. This can show as much in the eyes, and is much like their personalities, which are often the most humble, transparent and sacrificial in the zodiac (assuming no factors in the chart change this). The eyes are often large and round or even bulging. They are generally inquisitive and can be great listeners, giving you their full attention. There is mystery about them that makes many of them very alluring. Their sensitivity comes out at times when they speak to empathize with or defend others, especially who are not there to defend themselves. Prejudiced attitudes are hard to find among these people. They are empathetic and forgiving more than others. Their talent for and love of music, poetry, dancing, role-playing can give them away when paired with the facial features.
Pisces rising celebrities: Zubin Mehta, Ringo Starr, Carol Burnett,Salman Khan, Whitney Houston
These are general descriptions of what is typical that can be modified in any person especially by planetary aspects to the Asc (of a correct valid chart). For example, a person with Aries rising can have a more elongated face if Neptune is in angular aspect to the Asc (like Helen Reddy) but they will still have noticeable fiery Aries qualities some of which will show physically.
The Ascendant indicated by one’s recorded time of birth does not necessarily match the Ascendant of one’s correct birth horoscope (the one internalized in the glandular system). For more on this read The Incarnation process. These descriptions are molded from observations of persons with accurate validated birth horoscopes and can be used as a basis for correcting inaccurate charts.
If you read the description of the rising sign indicated on your birth chart, but it does not match you, then read the description of the preceding sign. If your birth time indicates an Ascendant of a late degree in a sign, say 23 or later, that does not seem to match, then read the following sign’s description.
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