The Astrology of Compatibility: Part 1: Romantic Comparisons
Often when speaking of astrological compatibility, we often think only in terms of romantic attachments. In fact though, any type of relationship you may think of can be viewed from this perspective; every family relationship, business partnerships, friends and even joining an organization.
When I'm asked to do a compatibility reading, I do a complete chart calculation for both people.Then, I compare the aspects and planetary placements of the two.
Traditionally, this is the first comparison the astrologer will make. The classic configuration is for the woman's Moon to be conjunct the man's Sun. In today's world of more flexible roles in relationships, this needn't be the case. A strong woman and a more passive man could find great harmony in having these positions reversed. Or, in a same sex relationship, the more dominant partner would have the Sun position and the less dominant one, the Moon's.
In my experience, having these aspects reversed is an indication that a romantic relationship probably won't go very far. However, there is a good chance for a fine friendship.
Other positive aspects would be the trine and sextile between the Sun and Moon. The square, opposition and quincunx would present challenges to the relationship, though would not necessarily negate its value and workability. It would depend upon the quality of the other aspects.
In order for two people to really feel "at home" with each other, the Moons in both charts should be complementary. It is a surprising thing, but I have known astrologers who have felt "just fine" with a partner with whom there was a mediocre or negative lunar connection. Then, when they were able to experience a relationship with someone whose Moon was truly complementary, they couldn't say enough good things about their luck in finding this person. Of course, they then made certain that their clients also found compatible lunar partners.
With this connection firmly established, many otherwise uncomfortable aspects and issues may be overlooked, as the couple will tend to knit together as a family and make a real effort to hold together.
This is one of the places I will often look for signs of past life involvement between these people. A South Node connection to a planet in the other's chart is a strong signal of previous involvement. If this is the Moon, Saturn or Neptune, the connection was probably very strong and there is more work to do on the relationship. If connected to Mars, look for indications of a pattern of abuse, if there is none, then look for where one partner relys on the other for motivation or energy.
The North Node connecting to a planet in the other's chart is a sign of important spiritual lessons which may be learned.
This tells us how well the couple will communicate. Often, simply a lack of negative aspects here is enough for these folks to get along. Naturally if one partner has strong needs for mental compatibility and communication, a more positive energy is required. If there are other negative comparisons in the chart, this can be the straw that breaks the camel's back.
This is where the chemistry comes in. Interestingly, an awkward aspect here doesn't have to mean the end of the relationship, though there will likely be some problems to be worked out in the bedroom. For instance, I will often encounter a square aspect between these two in what seems to be an otherwise happy couple. This simply means an adjustment is needed, perhaps in timing, pace, environment or something of that sort. It often requires clear communication and a willingness to compromise. If other areas of the chart show an openness to this, all should be well.
The opposition can be quite passionate and will again, require compromise.
The conjunction is usually highly sexed and will have a deep sense of connection between sex and love.
This is a broad-based area. It must be emphasized that it is only a piece of the puzzle. A relationship based solely on this connection will not survive.
If there's no significant Saturn connection, I generally won't pursue the reading. There simply is no staying power in it. Saturn gives longevity to the relationship, offering stability and structure. Saturn is absolutely essential in a compatibility reading.
Notice that I didn't say anything about the quality of the Saturn influence. That's because it can show up in the worst, abusive, neglectful and hateful relationships, as well as the harmonious and contented ones. My first look at Saturn in the charts is simply to see if the relationship can last.
Again, traditionally, a woman's Sun or Moon connected to a man's Saturn is supposed to be a wonderful thing. This is because Saturn represents authority and a paternal attitude. Many women today are finding that quality less attractive and will look elsewhere. The fact remains though, that a partner with a less developed ego structure, one who seeks guidance, will be attracted to someone who's Saturn is prominent.
One person's Saturn in the other's 7th house is often a positive thing.
A Saturn/Mars conjunction or opposition can be disastrous.
A Saturn/Sun conjunction is often very stabilizing for the Sun person, though it may make them far more serious than they would be on their own. The Saturn person may be envious of the Sun person's light-heartedness.
A Saturn/Moon aspect may be depressing. It depends on other chart factors.
Outer planet connections can get downright spooky, but very often metaphysicians, those in the occult or very spiritual people cannot avoid them.
These relationships tend to be conducted over a distance, or to be the on-again, off-again sort of situation. So far, I have yet to see a relationship with Uranus strongly involved that was other than this, but in *every* one that I've seen, the couple denied that this would be the outcome. (Sigh...) The single exception to this would be where Uranus was strongly aspected by Saturn.
These can be very tricky. Some sort of deception is often present, whether intentionally or not. Spiritual people attract this sort of thing, and as long as the relationship can be held at a high level, it's great. Otherwise it may devolve into substance abuse and lies.
You'll often see this when a couple comes together for the purpose of accelerating their evolution. It can look something like a raging volcano, with periods of dormancy. Not to everyone's taste, but there are those who thrive on it.