What your chart ruler wants you to know, and how to begin working with them
Your chart ruler is the most important planet in your birth chart. It is the planet whose influence you will feel the strongest in your life, and the energy of this planet will be reflected in your very nature. Think about it like this: if your birth chart is you, and your chart ruler rules over your entire birth chart, then your chart ruler rules over you. This planet has essentially chosen you, and it will assist you on your life's journey by providing its own particular lessons, gifts, and talents for you to come to understand and utilize. You can find your chart ruler through your ascendant, also known as the rising. The planet that rules your ascendent’s sign will be your chart ruler.
Working with our chart ruler can give us a deeper layer of understanding of ourselves and the lessons that we are here to learn. It can provide insight into consistent themes in our lives and our own core essence. By deliberately working with our chart ruler through ritual or intentional connection, we can better understand and come to know the energy we are working with – instead of learning by trial and error (though inescapable to an extent, of course), we can consciously work with the energy that surrounds us, that is embedded in our experiences and nature, and we can use this understanding to find a path. Our chart ruler is like a parental figure – it is here to guide us and help us mature in alignment with who we are and what we came here to do. Just as our parents passed on to us traits and skills of their own, this planet has done the same. We are a reflection of it in many ways, which is why it is so powerful to engage with this relationship.
For this, we are going to be using traditional astrology. Traditional astrology is ancient Western astrology – it has existed for thousands of years, long before the discovery of the outer planets Uranus, Neptune, and Pluto. Using traditional planetary rulers means that if you are a Scorpio rising, your chart ruler is Mars, not Pluto; if you are a Pisces rising, your chart ruler is Jupiter, not Neptune; and Aquarius risings, your ruler is Saturn, not Uranus.
Aries Rising/Scorpio Rising - Mars
Day of the week: Tuesday
Herbs: Cayenne Pepper, Camphor, Belladonna, Devil’s Claw Root, Stinging Nettle
Crystals: Carnelian, Garnet
Flowers: Tiger Lily
Food: Garlic, Chili Peppers
Mars is the planet of action, motivation, desire, willpower, sexual energy, and competition. It rules over our anger and aggression but also our wants and desires. Mars will have us ready to go to the ends of the earth for what we want. Working with Mars can teach us invaluable lessons on our own anger and how we process emotions of aggression and ambition. Mars wants to show you how strong your will is and that by following your instincts, you can achieve all that you want. Mars also asks of you that what you are moving towards is something that you desperately, viscerally, down-to-your-core desire because anything else is a waste of this great power of action. Mars can teach us how to channel the strong force within us so that it can be a power of creation, not destruction. Learning from Mars can provide understanding towards the healthiest expression of your immense power and determination. Engaging in play, sports, games, or exercise are all ways to connect with this planet.
Taurus Rising/Libra Rising - Venus
Day of the week: Friday
Herbs: Damiana, Vervain, Thyme, Self-Heal
Crystals: Rose Quartz, Rhodonite
Flowers: Rose, Orchid, Violet
Venus is the planet of love, relationships, beauty, sensuality, art, and values. She is a nurturer and wishes for us to follow suit, nurturing ourselves and others through love, pleasure, and creativity. Venus delights when we express ourselves through art or connection. Working with her will bring an emphasis on gratitude, especially for the relationships in your life that are in alignment with who you are, what you value, and what you seek to create in the world. She can open us up to aspects of our creative self that we may not have known even existed, and she can help us deeply in matters of self-love and self-belief. Venus as your chart ruler gives emphasis to a loving and inspired nature, one who finds fulfillment through harmony in relationships and through the creation of art and beauty. Anytime we engage in our creativity or take the time to embrace the sensuality of pleasure in its many forms (even in the smallest of ways, such as taking the time to really enjoy a hot cup of tea), Venus is present with us. Working with her will inevitably bring to your attention your relationships, as well as the love you send out in general and how it is returned to you in infinite ways. Deepening into this connection of this love is one of the most transformational ways to work with Venus, and a gratitude practice on a Friday morning is one example of a Venusian ritual.
Gemini Rising/Virgo Rising - Mercury
Day of the week: Wednesday
Herbs: Clover, Tulsi, Mandrake, Valerian
Crystals: Aventurine, Blue Lace Agate
Flowers: Honeysuckle, Lavender
Food: Pomegranate, Licorice
Mercury is the planet of communication in all its forms. Any time we are expressing something, sharing something or on the receiving end of either of these things, we are experiencing Mercury in our lives. Mercury’s influence in your life as your chart ruler makes curiosity a primary focus for you – any and all experiences will provide knowledge and insights that Mercury then asks you to share with the world. Mercury is in a constant back and forth – acquisition of information and then the dissemination of it. Mercury never stops, and you might find you share this restlessness. It is a constant buzz that feeds off of a need to communicate and learn. Expressing our thoughts is how we work with Mercury. Believing in what we are sharing and that we can communicate it like nobody else is how we work with Mercury. Listening actively to what others share with us and filing what we learn into our limitless wealth of knowledge is also how we work with Mercury. Pursuing each interest that comes along that grabs our attention like a shining, glimmering jewel catching the sunlight is Mercury in true form. We work with Mercury at its highest expression and in accordance with what it deeply wishes to teach us when we come to the world from a place of pure curiosity and awe. A Mercury ritual might include a writing practice or even listening to a podcast, or reading a good book. It may also look like mantras and affirmations, perhaps around the theme that what we have to share is of value and that our voice matters.
Cancer Rising - The Moon
Day of the week: Monday
Herbs: Anise, Blue Lotus, Clary Sage, Mugwort, Milk Thistle
Flowers: Poppy, Peony
Crystals: Moonstone, Selenite
The Moon rules over our emotions, our inner world, our inner child, our mother and where and how we find safety and belonging as well as what we need to feel emotionally secure. The Moon wants us to dive deep into our emotional experience as well as into the infinite waters of our subconscious. She is the high priestess within us as well as the nurturer within us. If she is your chart ruler, themes of belonging, nurturing, and the emotional, inner landscape of the psyche will be present in your life. The moon is teaching you how to care for yourself and others through an intuitive, emotionally intelligent,, and spiritual understanding of the inner world. Working with the moon is a practice of deep self-care – this is not face masks and our skincare routine; this is a perpetual tending of our inner child/emotional state. Working with the Moon will have you submerged in your depths, where you will come to know more about yourself than you ever thought possible. The moon asks you to become your own parent, your own nurturer, and to prioritize that level of self-tending. Working with your thought patterns, deconstructing your narratives, and creating an environment around you in which you feel safe to be vulnerable and real. The moon changes every 2-3 days – she wants you to know that you, too, are in constant shift and that this is not something to judge but marvel at. A ritual practice with the moon should be intuitive and connect you to your inner high priestess/priest. You may feel called to work at night under her shimmering rays or the dark sky.
Leo Rising - The Sun
Day of the week: Sunday
Herbs: Calendula, Chamomile, St. Johns Wort, Cinnamon, Saffron, Turmeric,
Flowers: Sunflower, Marigold, Dandelion
Food: Walnut, Almond
Crystals: Citrine, Golden Topaz
The Sun represents our self-expression, our light, our radiance, our personality and our core self. The Sun as your ruler is here to teach you about yourself – here to show you how much the world benefits by having you in it. Self-expression is the biggest lesson from the Sun and it will continue to push you into becoming more and more of yourself. The Sun won't stop there, though – if we are working with the Sun, it will push us into visibility. It will ask us to show up in the world with our talents, our gifts, and our inherent self-expression. It will show you over time how much is gained when you shine your light. It will remind you that creativity and self-expression are not just a birthright but a core need. A ritual for working with the Sun might center around these themes of vitality and self-expression. We may even dare ourselves to take a risk and become more visible as a devotional practice to the Sun within us and our core need to share our natural gifts.
Sagittarius Rising/Pisces Rising - Jupiter
Day of the week: Thursday
Herbs: Frankincense, Pine, Rose Hips, Meadowsweet, Myrrh
Food: Raspberries, Blueberries, Cane Sugar
Jupiter is the planet of expansion, luck, culture, philosophy, religion, and overseas travel. With Jupiter as your chart ruler you get an extra dose of luck. Jupiter asks you to trust with optimism that everything will work out, and with Jupiter’s benevolent touch in your life, it probably will. Jupiter rules over our beliefs, so when we work with Jupiter we tend to work with our belief systems, and Jupiter will ask us to continuously expand and evolve those beliefs. Jupiter will send us outside of ourselves so that we can grow but also so that we can understand. It is that understanding that will lead you to new growth, to new horizons outside of your comfort zone and your scope of knowledge. Jupiter is a very spiritual planet and it will ask you to search – search for your truth and search for understanding of the truths of others. If we are working with Jupiter, we are always growing because we are always encountering something we haven't ever before. Jupiter will ask you not to brush past these experiences without taking the time to understand them and then allow yourself to be changed with this new understanding. A Jupiter practice is one that leans into fun, optimism and connecting to a higher source. It might see us make a conscious choice to show up as carefree as we can be and spend time with what fulfills us and expand us.
Capricorn RIsing/Aquarius Rising - Saturn
Day of the week: Saturday
Herbs: Hellebore, Mullein, Horsetail
Crystals: Black Obsidian
Saturn is the planet of discipline, structure, hard work and karmic lessons. Working with Saturn can see us taking time to do some restructuring – you can do this by cleaning the house, creating new systems that ultimately make your life easier in the long run, or working on your craft, whatever that may be. Saturn also rules over the bones, teeth, hair, and skin so taking extra time to invest in the health of those areas is also beneficial. Saturn is all about discipline and hard work, so we can add structure to routines of self-care, transforming them from something superficial into a long-term investment in our health, well-being, and future success. Saturn is the lord of time, so working with Saturn as our ruling planet means that themes of delayed success could be prevalent in our lives. Through understanding the nature of this planet, we can shift from victimhood or frustration when we encounter limitations on our path and instead move into an understanding that the most beautiful and abundant success we can ever have will come from a committed labor of love. We can see our longer path as not a disadvantage but as a measure of how big and great our success can be once we have grown into maturity with it. In the end, with Saturn as your chart ruler, you have the potential to be more successful than most people – but Saturn requires maturity, patience, and commitment from you. It does not wish to give you everything you want before you are ready. With Saturn as your chart ruler, you hold many of its virtues, including the ability to continue on through adversity. Your ambition will help you prioritize your path and keep you committed to it. As well as revolting time to our craft and our work, a Saturn practice could also see us engaging in a ritual to connect with our past lives to heal anything that is ready to be healed and resolved.