Know The Essential Dignities In Astrology: Exaltation & Fall, Domicile & Detriment…

To Be Glorified And Rejoiced On High? Or, Not So Much......

Let’s look at Essential Dignities in astrology…

As an adjective, to be exalted means to be elevated, high-ranking, prominent and even superior.

If it were a person (and their rank or status) that were exalted we might see them reaching a high or powerful level in life.

Meanwhile, exaltation can be a feeling or state of extreme happiness – bliss – to exult is to rejoice!

Let the brother of low degree rejoice in that he is exalted;

James 1:9, King James Bible

But do not, dear reader assume that because a planet is ‘exalted’ it is in some way auspiciously bestowed upon you, like an angelic crown or guarantee of luck.

In astrology, exaltation doesn’t necessarily lead to a noble, illustrious and wholly positive outcome…

Of course, it can. But not always!

My own experience teaches me that astrology cannot rule something either as ‘good’, nor ‘bad’, for it is the quality of time, and reflects what is held in that moment. As above, so below.

Let’s begin by looking at those planets in exaltation...

Planets In Exaltation In Astrology…

  • The Sun is exalted in Aries,
  • The Moon is exalted in Taurus,
  • Mercury is exalted in Virgo,
  • Venus is exalted in Pisces,
  • Mars is exalted in Capricorn,
  • Jupiter is exalted in Cancer,
  • Saturn is exalted in Libra in the season of fall

Of course, not all Aries people are esteemed and influential (though they might like to think of themselves as such!)

Not all those born with Venus in Pisces are guaranteed affection or Venusian trappings – a grand romance, or a love life of smooth sailing…

So what gives?

It goes to show we cannot be literal with words, including playing ‘celestial favourites’… In my eyes, we make our own good fortune to an extent.

Now to fall.

Note the sign directly opposite a planet’s sign of exaltation is considered to be its fall.

Planets And Their Astrological Fall…

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In astrology planets can also appear in ‘fall’, a word that conjures a negative connotation – like downfall.

The “fallen woman” is an archaic term, used to describe a woman who has “lost her innocence”, fallen from the grace of God. Similarly, in Abrahamic religions, fallen angels are angels who were expelled from heaven.

Astrologically, we might assume or be tempted to say that fall is a position of weakness regarding the function of the planet, and it’s true that as the Sun shines during Libra Season it is more gentle in the skies, setting below the horizon line.

Yet there are many eminent Libra people, capable of running a business, holding the fort, many strong poetic individuals with Mercury in Pisces!

The signs of planetary fall are as follows:

  • Sun in fall in Libra
  • Moon in fall in Scorpio
  • Mercury in fall in Pisces
  • Venus in fall in Virgo
  • Mars in fall in Cancer
  • Jupiter in fall in Capricorn
  • Saturn in fall in Aries
  • Uranus in fall in Taurus
  • Neptune in fall in Capricorn & Aquarius.

Now, what about domicile?

Planets In Domicile…

The word domicile to me reminds me of docile – kinds passive or submissive, resting.

Domicile in general terms describes a country as a permanent home, i.e. where someone is domiciled or belongs.

But in astrology, domicile is the position of a planet in a sign over which it has rulership. This is a very helpful notion, as we work with house rulership and timing techniques, and get to know where a planet might feel comfortable.

We might remember that where a planet is domicile it’s comfy cosy, because it’s where it’s from in a way….

  • Sun is in its domicile in Leo – the Sun rules Leo
  • Moon is in its domicile in Cancer – the Moon rules Cancer
  • Mercury is in its domicile in Gemini and Virgo – Mercury rules these two
  • Venus is in its domicile in Taurus and Libra – Venus rules these two
  • Mars is in its domicile in Aries and Scorpio – Mars rules these two
  • Jupiter is in its domicile in Sagittarius and Pisces – Jupiter rules these two
  • Saturn is in its domicile in Capricorn and Aquarius – Saturn rules these two.

Planets In Detriment…

Again, another misleading word.

Detrimental is almost indicative of harm! Like if a person’s involvement was detrimental to the success of a business…

In astrology, notice that a planet is in its detriment in the opposite sign to its domicile…

  • The Sun is in detriment in Aquarius
  • The Moon is in detriment in Capricorn
  • Mercury is in detriment in Sagittarius and Pisces
  • Venus is in detriment in Aries and Scorpio
  • Mars is in detriment in Taurus and Libra
  • Jupiter is in detriment in Gemini and Virgo
  • Saturn is in detriment in Cancer and Leo.

Needless to say, you must take into consideration all the people throughout history who have succeeded and done great things, despite these words attached to their planets! 

It’s interesting to note, each of the seven traditional planets has its exaltation at a particular degree of the zodiac sign, too – as follows…

  • Sun the 19th degree of Aries (i.e., 18°00′ – 18°59′)
  • Moon the 3rd degree of Taurus
  • Mercury the 15th degree of Virgo
  • Venus the 27th degree of Pisces
  • Mars the 28th degree of Capricorn
  • Jupiter the 15th degree of Cancer
  • Saturn the 21st degree of Libra.
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