What Your Sun, Moon, and Rising Signs Actually Mean

What Your Sun, Moon, and Rising Signs Actually Mean

Does astrology seem confusing to you? Maybe you’re wondering about your Big Three or what your sun, moon or rising sign actually means.

Many people only know their sun sign, the one based on their birthdate. However, that’s only one small piece of the astrological puzzle! Your full birth chart, including your moon and rising sign, reveals a much richer picture of your personality.

What Is Astrology?

Astrology is a complex and ancient system of belief that seeks to understand the influence of the stars and planets on human affairs. It’s important to distinguish it from astronomy, which is the scientific study of celestial objects.

Astrology proposes that the positions of celestial bodies at the time of your birth (and other significant moments) can influence your personality, life events, and destiny.

It uses the zodiac, a system of twelve constellations, to categorize and interpret the influence of these celestial bodies.

How Astrology Works

Astrologers create a “birth chart” for an individual, showing the positions of planets and other celestial bodies at the exact time of birth.

They then interpret the chart based on the zodiac signs, planetary placements, and aspects (geometric angles between planets).

What it’s Used For

Understanding Personalities

Many people use astrology to gain insights into their own (or others) personality traits, strengths, and weaknesses.

Predicting Events

Some astrologers use charts to predict future events. For me it’s more useful to think of it as certain themes might arise in your life, not necessarily events.


Astrology can be used to assess compatibility between individuals in relationships.

Why You Might Not Relate to Your Sun Sign

It’s just one part of the story: Your sun sign represents your core identity, but other placements like your moon and rising sign influence your emotions, self-expression, and how you interact with the world.
It takes time to grow into your sign: As you mature, you may start to embody your sun sign’s qualities more fully.

The Big Three: Your Sun, Moon and Rising Signs

They’re called the Big Three because understanding just these three signs will give you a more balanced perspective on an individual, rather than just looking at their sun sign.

Your Sun Sign

Your identity, sense of self, and ego.

Moon Sign

Your inner self, emotions, and how you feel comfortable.

Rising Sign (Ascendant)

Your first impression, how others see you, and how you view the world.

Where to Find Your Big Three

Use a birth chart calculator with your exact time, date, and place of birth.

(Cafe Astrology is a great one!)

Deepen Your Understanding the Zodiac

Understanding the elements and modalities can help you gain a deeper understanding of your own zodiac sign and the people around you.


The four elements in astrology represent fundamental qualities and energies. Each zodiac sign is assigned to one of these elements, influencing its core characteristics.

Fire (Aries, Leo, Sagittarius)

Associated with passion, enthusiasm, creativity, and drive.
Earth (Taurus, Virgo, Capricorn)

Associated with stability, practicality, grounding, and security.

Air (Gemini, Libra, Aquarius)

Associated with communication, intellect, curiosity, and adaptability.

Water (Cancer, Scorpio, Pisces)

Associated with emotions, intuition, empathy, and sensitivity.


Modalities describe how the signs express their energy and approach life. There are three modalities, each of which has four zodiac signs:

Cardinal (Aries, Cancer, Libra, Capricorn)

Associated with initiating, taking action, and starting new things. Cardinal signs are often leaders and pioneers.

Fixed (Taurus, Leo, Scorpio, Aquarius)

Associated with stability, focus, and perseverance. Fixed signs are known for their dedication and commitment.

Mutable (Gemini, Virgo, Sagittarius, Pisces)

Associated with adaptability, flexibility, and change. Mutable signs are good at transitioning and adjusting to new situations.

How Your Big Three Zodiac Signs Influence You: What Your Sun, Moon, and Rising Signs Actually Mean

Your Sun Sign: Your Core Self

Think of your Sun sign as the foundation of who you are. It’s determined by the zodiac sign the Sun was in when you were born, and it shapes your core identity, ego, and fundamental personality traits.


Strong personality, straightforward, outgoing, loyal

Aries Sun: Bold, courageous, and playful, with a touch of impulsiveness.
Leo Sun: Natural-born leaders, confident, and creative, with a love for the spotlight.
Sagittarius Sun: Adventurous, optimistic, and free-spirited, with a thirst for knowledge.


Hard-working, responsible, realistic, dependable

Taurus Sun: Calm, cool, and collected, with a love for beauty and a stubborn streak.
Virgo Sun: Practical, organized, and detail-oriented, with a strong work ethic.
Capricorn Sun: Ambitious, responsible, and driven, with a focus on security and achievement.


Sociable, love of learning, always thinking and doing something

Gemini Sun: Witty, playful, and curious, with a knack for communication.
Libra Sun: Diplomatic, charming, and relationship-oriented, with a love for art and beauty.
Aquarius Sun: Independent, humanitarian, and creative, with a unique perspective.


Intuitive, nurturing, introverted

Cancer Sun: Highly intuitive, emotional, and nurturing, with a strong homebody vibe.
Scorpio Sun: Deep, passionate, and mysterious, with an interest in the occult.
Pisces Sun: Sensitive, imaginative, and compassionate, with a strong connection to their intuition.

Your Moon Sign: Your Inner World

The Moon sign, determined by the Moon’s position at your birth, governs your emotional side, your inner world, and your intuition. It’s the part of you that you don’t necessarily reveal to everyone.


Need attention, adventures, and caring partners and friends

Aries Moon: Passionate, impulsive, and quick to forgive.
Leo Moon: Sociable, optimistic, and loves being the center of attention.
Sagittarius Moon: Optimistic, adventurous, and values freedom.


Thrive on work, routine, and stability

Taurus Moon: Careful, thoughtful, and slow to anger, but holds grudges.
Virgo Moon: Analytical, organized, and prefers routine.
Capricorn Moon: Practical, ambitious, and seeks security.


Seek intellectual stimulation, new experiences, and social interaction

Gemini Moon: Lighthearted, playful, and easily adaptable.
Libra Moon: Romantic, charming, and drawn to beauty and harmony.
Aquarius Moon: Humanitarian, independent, and values community.


Find comfort in alone time and caretaking

Cancer Moon: Highly sensitive, nurturing, and protective of loved ones.
Scorpio Moon: Deeply emotional, private, and holds onto secrets.
Pisces Moon: Sensitive, imaginative, and highly intuitive.

Your Rising Sign: First Impressions

Finally, your Rising sign, also known as your Ascendant, is determined by the zodiac sign rising on the horizon at your birth. This sign influences your first impressions, the way others perceive you, and your overall demeanor.


Energetic, extroverted, competitive

Aries Rising: Energetic, spontaneous, and a natural leader.
Leo Rising: Life of the party, outgoing, and loves the spotlight.
Sagittarius Rising: Always on the go, optimistic, and spontaneous.


Determined, grounded, even-keeled

Taurus Rising: Careful, cautious, and values stability.
Virgo Rising: Quiet, reserved, and prefers minimalism.
Capricorn Rising: Serious, responsible, and has a strong work ethic.


Curious, talkative, restless

Gemini Rising: Talkative, restless, and easily makes new friends.
Libra Rising: Fashionable, social butterfly, and attracts attention.
Aquarius Rising: Unique, independent, and values intellectual pursuits.


Emotional, quiet

Cancer Rising: Sweet, caring, and comes off as shy at first.
Scorpio Rising: Mysterious, intense, and has a powerful presence.
Pisces Rising: Dreamy, imaginative, and comes off as kind and caring.

Remember, your Big Three is just the beginning of your astrological journey. Each sign has its own nuances and interacts with the others in your birth chart to create a unique personality. So, explore, have fun, and discover the fascinating world of astrology!

So what did you think? Did you learn more about your Big Three zodiac signs? Do you have a better understanding of your astrological birth chart now?

Remember: Your birth chart is a unique roadmap to your personality. By exploring all its aspects, you can gain a richer understanding of yourself and how you connect with others.

Jenn Stevens The Aligned Life

PS Looking for more? You might also want to check out this post about the current astrology, or how to manifest with your astrological sign.

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What Your Sun, Moon, and Rising Signs Actually Mean


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