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Does it seem strange to you that the biggest planet in the Solar System doesn’t get as much press as many of the others, when it comes to astrology? Part of the reason for that is, I think, because Jupiter is next in line to Saturn… and Saturn scares people and thus gets their attention. And frankly, everything after Saturn is either weird or crazy or potentially deadly, and those are the sorts of things that get attention too. Nobody got ten millions clicks from writing a headline that said “Beyoncé had an average day today,” but, scare tactics? All you need is one small and faulty study showing that chocolate can help you lose weight — or that bacon is killing you — and next thing you know you’re trending on Twitter.

But: what makes you happy? This is one of life’s most important questions, and for the answer we must look to Jupiter in our birth charts.

It seems to me – and I can’t think of any other astrologers off the top of my head who thinks this, so feel free to take it with a grain of salt – that once we move out into the Solar System past Mars, the Sign placement of any given planet takes on less importance in the birth chart and more emphasis should be placed on a house placement in a chart. This doesn’t mean that Sign placements don’t count at all with the outer planets — of course they do. But whereas Sign placements tend to make us see everyone in the room who has Mars in Aries as impatient and Mars in Taurus as stubborn and so on, it’s a little harder to generalize about everyone in the room who has, say, Jupiter in Aquarius. So when you’re looking at your Jupiter, don’t just focus on the Sign it’s in… look at the aspects it’s making to other planets. This will help you find your astrological Happy Place.

You could do a lot of perfectly good astrology just using the Sun and the Moon and the planets up to Mars. In fact I think that if you were assembling a universe from scratch you could build a perfectly functional assembly line robot with just those planets.

The Sun and Moon represent your basic existence and appetites. Mercury gives you the ability to think. Venus makes you want things, and Mars makes you go after those things. But without Jupiter? You’d never be able to appreciate something like this.

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Jupiter also loves a good competition.

Jupiter and Saturn are the farthest planets out the traditional astrology and the Vedic Astrology use. Some have referred to Jupiter and Saturn as being the “interpersonal planets.” Whereas the Sun, Moon and everything up to Mars have a lot to do with who you are and how you express yourself, Jupiter and Saturn have an additional relationship with how you with relate to humanity and society in general. Jupiter conceive the floor and social loss of the. Saturn punishes those who break those rules.

Let’s not get too far ahead of ourselves let’s start talking about Saturn. Saturn already gets enough attention with how much trouble it can cause people.

Many astrological interpretations you’ll see make Jupiter sound like a bit of a Santa Claus: the life of the party, the Jolly one, and the place where humor comes from. I think all of these things are true, but it vastly over simplified Jupiter’s role in astrology.

Before anyone found Neptune, Jupiter was strongly associated with mysticism. In fact Jupiter is still the ruler of religion, or perhaps more accurately organized spiritual thought. Neptune is great when its doing its job, font its insight need the larger philosophical framework with Jupiter provides in order to do anything with those insights.

Jupiter loves a nice and complicated belief system that all works together in the real world. Yes, Jupiter also rules such things as partying and getting lucky and winning the lottery and all of that. but let’s not focus too much on that side of Jupiter. How often have you won the lottery anyway?

Jupiter transit usually bring good news, but not always. Jupiter also rules things like excess and overgrowth, so is Jupiter transit might be great for your income but not good news to your oncologist. Jupiter throws a great party but hasn’t got the first clue as to how to clean up afterwards.

Perhaps the single best metaphor I can think of to help you understand the nature of Jupiter is that it is traditionally considered to be the ruler of marriage. Think about it this way: in marriage, or a business partnership, or when you join a team, you take the individual components of who you are as a person – all the parts of you up to the planet Mars – and decide to commit them two completely different individual or to a group or to a cause that involve something other than simply your own personal gain. Jupiter marks the point where you become something bigger than just yourself. Jupiter is the first step that lead you to a larger universe.

Now, in order to more fully understand what it is the Jupiter contributes to making you as an individual who you are? Get out and party with some of your friends and contemplate these matters. Seriously: as planetary meditations go you have to admit there’s plenty worse out there.

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