Do You Know Your Rising Sign?

The Chart Ruler

Selfie / Credit: Guido Mieth / Getty Images.

Editor's Note:  Here, Eileen Grimes tells how the Rising Sign is determined, and the meaning it has in your chart.  You can skip the description and jump to reading about your Rising Sign.

Where to Find your Rising Sign 

The Rising Sign is always at the 9 o'clock position in the birthchart has to do with what Zodiac Sign was “rising” at the time of birth.  The time of birth is needed to get an accurate rising sign placement.

Next to the Sun and the Moon in the horoscope, the Rising Sign (aka the Ascendant) is a major point in any astrological chart.  There are many popular associations, including the personality of the person, the way a person looks, physical attributes, etc. 

However, I like to view this as what was being illuminated at the time of birth -- the moment our being rises in the East.  It's the very moment we become visible to the universe around us.

Sun, Moon and Rising Sign 

The Rising Sign isn’t a planet (expressing a particular part of our lives, like relationships), nor an area of life that needs to be explored. It is more of a portal through which energy must funnel outwards. It acts as the channel of energy from the self to the world at large.

The Sun is our essential being, the “overlord”, if you will, of the essential qualities that make up ourselves, and how we view and approach our life.

The Moon is the inner world we find security in, and is our link to emotional well-being.

The Sun and Moon are directly connected to Mom and Dad’s influence on us. When we add the rising sign, we find some additional expectations with origins in those early years. In other words, we will find what kind of behavior we must develop in order to gain acceptance into our family, and into our world.

The Personality 

The major focus of the Rising Sign, therefore, rests on the development of the personality -- our social mask, actually.  When we’re out in the world and are meeting and greeting people, the Rising Sign is generally the first thing we present to others.

Astrologer Diana Stone, says that the Rising Sign has to do with the behavior patterns we might have to adopt to adapt to our external and familial surroundings.  This means, “acceptable” behavior -- what will get us noticed, win approval/disapproval, and most certainly acknowledgment from those around us.

If all is well and we grow up reasonably sound and secure, we will behave in certain ways and develop social skills to gain acceptance by the world. We will develop specific personality traits so that our public persona is successful; so that we can socially  interact with great success.

The overall birth chart is something we grow into, over time, and learn the lessons we have to learn. The rising sign is significant, in that our interaction to the outer world will assist the development of the emotional self and self-identity, and ultimately the complete integration of ourselves, on all levels.

Each Rising Sign has specific lessons that need to be learned.

When those traits are owned, and integrated into the personality, the rest of the chart can find its way out into the world, and express itself with true integrity.

I must say, in the process of “growing” into my own rising sign over the years, I have found this part of the chart to be way more important than I realized. The integration of that part of us can help us become more effective in life, as well as to understand how we're coming across, and how we connect with others.

The Rising Signs 

Aries Rising 

Accepted behavior: To learn behavior that will foster courage throughout life, and encourage the ability to stand up for themselves. The family situation might test their resolve, and provoke them into fighting for a role as leader in the family. Physical traits: Assertive personality. Noticeable Aries glyph in face with eyebrows and forehead prominent.

Taurus Rising

Accepted behavior: To learn stability and allow the body and soul to relax and just take it easy.

The family situation might have to do with this person being the breadwinner; money will be an important issue in life. Physical traits: Little or no neck, possible sensual melodious voice, stocky body. Sensual, tactile, and slow moving.

Gemini Rising

Accepted behavior: To speak out when necessary; to articulate one’s ideas and give them form to those around them. To make their voice heard in familial situations. Physical attributes: Talkative, small frame body, active hands.

Cancer Rising

Accepted behavior: Learning to nurture and take care of family connections. To bond with the mother figure; perhaps even becoming surrogate mother to family. Physical traits: Round face, softer body - very nurturing spirit. Breast area is well developed.

Leo Rising

Accepted behavior: To learn to play and have fun on the world’s big stage and accept the applause of the world. To “perform” and act a role that perhaps might not be completely themselves.

Physical attributes: Hair, and more hair, and a regal bearing. Huge hearts and big smiles. Proud posture and confidence.

Virgo Rising

Accepted behavior: The perfection of the self-image. Humility and service, and learning to live with integrity and honor. A fastidious, precise personality, that includes lots of grooming.

Physical attributes: Body likely to be pear-shaped. Larger hips, smaller shoulders; clean cut, and very meticulous.

Libra Rising

Accepted behavior: To understand the nature of relating with others. To act in a peaceful way that brings others together. They are the peace-makers in any family Physical attributes: Even featured, even tempered. Attractive and graceful.

Scorpio Rising

Accepted behavior: To see the undercurrents that lie between others, and probe deeply under the surface of hidden emotionally charged issues, whether it is with themselves or others. Physical Attributes: Mysterious, smoldering look, with a strong face (jaw usually square). Most noticeable are the eyes, which are piercing, and intense. Very probing personality, but generally shy at first meeting.

Sagittarius Rising

Accepted behavior: To provide some much needed entertainment -- and perhaps some comic relief -- uplifting and inspiring others. Physical attributes: Can be rather stumbly people - usually long thighs and tall; can have a goofy personality. Can look a bit horsey, with perhaps prominent teeth.

Capricorn Rising

Accepted behavior: To follow the directive and guidance from the father in the family. To be the strength and structure in the family (the mature one).

Physical attributes: Strong body and physical stamina, serious personality. Can look older than their chronological age. Solid body, rather rigid musculature. The knees can be a problem, as well as the skeletal structure.

Aquarius Rising

Accepted behavior: The objective is to learn separateness, and feeling unique - which is learned from being a “black sheep”, or choosing to be different than the rest of the family. Physical attributes: Usually an asymmetrical body, or face. Ankles tend to twist. Unusual tastes in clothing; androgynous dressing.

Pisces Rising

Accepted behavior: The need is to blend into the family - perhaps by need, or just wanting to retreat to the background. Physical attributes: Can look fishy-faced, with a far-off look in their eyes. Eyes are watery, and the body is usually rounded with excess water.

Can have feet problems.