Empedocles, a Greek philosopher, scientist, and healer, proposed that all matter consisted of four fundamental ingredients: Earth, Air, Fire, and Water. Fire and Air are outwardly extending elements that seek to go higher and further away from each other, whereas Earth and Water are inwardly turning ones that seek to sink lower.’
The four elements also describe the four distinct personality types linked to zodiac signs. The elements significantly impact fundamental personal qualities, actions, feelings, thinking, and intuition. They’re visible in our relationships, goals or lack thereof, and the unexpected turns and curving that spice up our existence.
Astrology and Elements
Astrology aims to help us better focus our energies and gives us a better insight into all our personal traits. Whether they are positive or negative traits, this knowledge can help us realize our full potential. We all need the four elements for survival. For example, we all need Air to breathe, Water to cleanse us and sustain our growth, Fire to shelter us from the cold and nourish us, and Earth to live on and grow our food. All the elements are equally important. Below is a more in-depth description of each.
Astrology: Taurus, Capricorn, Virgo
Associated with the signs Taurus, Capricorn, and Virgo, Earth represents our nature’s practical, realistic, and material side. It seeks to assert a stable, secure, and structured environment in which we can function. Earth is patient and reliable, solid and robust.
Earth can be a stabilizing force in a relationship, helping to create balance and harmony. Earth enables growth. For example, watch how plant life grows. It starts from an acorn and grows into an oak tree as humans grow from youth to maturity.
The overexpression of this element can be seen in a stubborn and rigid personality. One that strives to remain in the comfort zone in life, afraid to take risks. It can also be seen by a love of the material side of life, the comforts of material well-being.
Weakness: attachment, stinginess, materialism, resistance to change, too much attention to detail, and missing the big picture.
Astrology: Gemini, Libra, Aquarius
The element Air is associated with the signs Gemini, Libra, and Aquarius. It seeks to establish itself in the realm of the intellect. It is through the process of thinking that we develop ideas. It is through the influence of this element that we learn to communicate. Through Air, we gain and share knowledge.
Air contributes inventiveness, originality, and versatility to the personality. It gives that feeling of freedom and unattachment. It reaches out to the mental self. Air expresses love of people and the ability to intellectualize. Air appreciates the differences in people and accepts different perspectives.
An overexpression of Air’s influence can be seen as living in a dream world with unrealistic goals. Air should seek to maintain practicality and develop consistency in dealing with the real world.
Weakness of this element: Lack of emotion, lack of connection with the higher self and overactive mind blocks inner peace and harmony.
Astrology: Leo, Sagittarius, Aries
Leo, Sagittarius, and Aries are associated with the element Fire. It represents the life force glowing within us. This element projects self-expression, creativity, courage, and enthusiasm.
We need Fire to meet the basic need of cooking our food. Fire provides a sense of security, warmth, and inspiration. Fire strengthens self-confidence to tackle problems without hesitation. Without Fire, there is no radiance, no conviction, no expression. A spark can light up new ideas and serve as a beacon to light on how we achieve goals with confidence and enthusiasm.
An overexpression of Fire can turn assertiveness into aggression, daring into reckless behavior, etc. When Fire’s influence is out of control, it seeks to consume all in its path.
Weakness: lack of interest, egotistic, excessive self-centeredness, self-importance.
Astrology: Cancer, Scorpio, Pisces
The element Water is associated with the signs of Cancer, Scorpio, and Pisces and influences the conscience and the subconscious forces that act on our lives. The element water pours forth to others. It allows one to feel their pain and suffering and offer sincere compassion.
Water seeks to heal and nurture those around it. Psychic awareness is also present in the water signs and shows itself from time to time with uncanny accuracy. Uncontrolled, this element can send emotions on a turbulent path resulting in moodiness and unpredictable highs and lows.
When overexpressed, one may be overly emotional, deeply sensitive, and subjective.
Weakness can result from being too protective and possessive of their loved ones, having a cold attitude, and a lack of drive.
Creating Harmonious Relationships Through A Balance Of The Elements
The tight bond between two people can result from several elements coming together in a relationship. An Air-Fire connection or an Earth-Water connection are two well-matched pairings. As a result, an interaction can grow on mutual development and harmony.
The element of Air in a relationship enables an element of Fire to act on and shape ideas and aspirations into reality.
Water provides sensitivity and nurturance to the element of Earth’s frigid, objective attitude towards issues.
Both lay the groundwork for future growth in a relationship.
In a Fire/Water relationship, balance can be achieved by realizing that Water can inject needed sensitivity and patience into a Fire sign. At the same time, Fire can add drive and the courage for action that can sometimes be lacking in Water signs.
In a Fire/Earth combination, we find that Fire’s initiative and drive can simulate Earth’s sometimes laid-back and reserved nature. At the same time, Earth’s practicality and discipline can be balanced with Fire’s occasionally quick-to-act ways.
When both the needs and traits of the two elements combine, harmony can be achieved. However, it can hinder growth when both individuals become too complacent.
Overall, other combinations may also work as long as both people in the relationship recognize and respect each other’s needs and characteristics. Having a relationship with open communication and respect is essential no matter which elements are involved.