What Are Sabian Symbols & What Each Means For Your Zodiac Sign

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couple under the stars

While most of us are aware of the twelve signs of the Zodiac, there are lesser known degrees of each sign, known as the Sabian Symbols, which give greater magic and meaning to life’s events.

What are the Sabian Symbols?

The Sabian alchemists of ancient Mesopotamia divided up the sky into 360 degrees and twelve zodiac signs, with each sign itself made up of 30 degrees.

The 30 degrees of each zodiac sign — beginning with 1 degree Aries (Aries-1) and ending with 30 degrees Pisces (Pisces-30), the first and last sign — each holds their own unique story and energetic meaning.

It's these 30-degree phases of each zodiac sign that are called the Sabian Symbols, which are also considered the doorway to the matrix of the ancient mind.

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The Origin Story and History of the Sabian Symbols

The Sabian Symbols were created by astrologer Marc Edmund Jones and clairvoyant Elsie Wheeler in 1925.

Together, the two sat in a car near her home in Balboa Park, an idyllic neighborhood of San Diego, and spent one day recording the symbols Wheeler saw for each of the degrees Jones told her.

Jones, a member of the Sabian Society, felt the call to investigate the deeper meaning of each of the 360 degrees of the Zodiac, enlisting the assistance of Wheeler whose gifts were so extraordinary, she was said to see images, messages and symbols when asked questions.

These images were translated into either a few words or a full sentence, depending on the vision of Wheeler, and became what is now known as the Sabian Symbols. For example, 9 degrees Aries is a crystal gazer, while 1 degree Capricorn is an Indian Chief demanding recognition.

Jones had chosen Wheeler for this work because he believed she was able to access what he originally called the ancient mind matrix of the Sabian alchemists of Mesopotamia, allowing her to tune into the original beliefs and mysticism that fueled the discovery of the sky and the secrets it held.

Another important figure in the practice of the Sabian Symbols was a man named Dane Rudhyar, who had received permission to use Jones’s work to do his own research.

In his alchemist quest, he combined the Sabian Symbols alongside his research into the writings of Psychologist Carl Jung and Hindu Philosophy; it’s this new combination that many astrologers use today.

In this work, the term "Sabian" refers to the people of an ancient sect from the Middle East region, who worship and connect with angels and the divine presence that flows through them during their talismanic practices.

It is said that astrology originally began there with this group of people, often called the Chaldeans, meaning Moon Worshipers.

Sabian Symbols are often used in conjunction with astrology, although they can be used as a separate oracle as well.

For instance, if there is a Full Moon, we look up the Sabian Symbol associated with the degree of the zodiac sign that the Moon is occurring within. This brings greater meaning to the astrological event itself, because it invites us to go past the obvious and through the doorway of the alchemist mind.

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The Meaning and Significance of the Sabian Symbols as an Oracle

The Sabian Oracle can be used one of two ways: either asking a question like we would in Tarot, or to bring greater meaning to an astrological event.

Because the Oracle is made up of symbols and not logical, fact-based information as astrology is, it’s said to harness more of the feminine energy rather than the masculine.

This means that to use the Sabian Symbols as an Oracle, we have to detach from the right brain (knowing) and let the left brain (intuitive) take over.

It’s believed that the symbolism of the Oracle serves as a doorway to harnessing our inner wisdom and divine consciousness. So, to use it — whether by asking questions or associating it with an event like a Full Moon — it’s best to communicate with the ancient Sabians by images and symbols, the same way the messages are delivered.

To open the Sabian Symbol Oracle is to step into our inner feelings and validate what we already know but often doubt.

This practice also opens the doorway to the higher self. We are all capable of connecting with this spiritual knowing, but to do so, we have to bypass our consciousness.

By simply stating questions in picture form and then sitting with the Oracle answer we are given — for instance, five degrees of Taurus, whose symbol is a widow at an open grave — we will understand the message that we are meant to receive, instead of the message we just want to hear.

It’s also part of the process that, depending on situation and person, we might read the symbol differently. This isn’t wrong, but reflective of each of us having a different intuitive side.

Even this aspect is part of sinking further down in our feminine self, recognizing that there may not be a right or a wrong, only what we feel.

How To Find Your Sabian Symbol

To use the degree symbols, first look up your birth chart. Then, find the corresponding symbol associated with the degree the planet is in using a calculator.

For example, if your Sun Sign is in 23 degree Virgo, you will look at the symbol associated with 23 Virgo to gain more knowledge about what the ancients have to say regarding your life path.

For a lunar event like a Full Moon, you can look up what degree of a zodiac sign the lunation is occurring within, and look it up in the symbols to discover what secrets that event may hold.

If you want to use it similar to Tarot, you can purchase a deck of Sabian Symbol cards, or you can write down on index cards the number and sign abbreviation — for example, A1 (1 degree of Aries), like Jones did in his original experiment.

Then, ask the question. With your eyes closed, let your intuition draw you towards which one to select, and that will be your answer.

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List Of All 360 Sabian Symbols

Aries Sabian Symbols

1 degree: A woman rises out of the water; a seal rises and embraces her

2 degrees: A comedian entertaining a group

3 degrees: A cameo profile of a man, in the outline of his country

4 degrees: Two lovers strolling through a secluded walk

5 degrees: A triangle with wings

6 degrees: A square brightly lighted on one side

7 degrees: A man successfully expressing himself in two realms at once

8 degrees: A large hat with streamers flying, facing East

9 degrees: A crystal gazer

10 degrees: A man teaching new forms for old symbols

11 degrees: The president of the country

12 degrees A flock of wild geese

13 degrees: An unsuccessful bomb explosion

14 degrees: A serpent coiling near a man and a woman

15 degrees: An Indian weaving a blanket

16 degrees: Brownies dancing in the setting sun

17 degrees: Two prim spinsters

18 degrees: An empty hammock

19 degrees: The magic carpet

20 degrees: A young girl feeding birds in winter

21 degrees: A boxer entering the ring

22 degrees: The gate to the garden of desire

23 degrees: A woman in pastel colors carrying a heavy and valuable but veiled load

24 degrees: An open window and a net curtain blowing into a cornucopia

25 degrees: A double promise

26 degrees: A man possessed of more gifts than he can hold

27 degrees: A lost opportunity is regained in the imagination

28 degrees: A large disappointed audience

29 degrees: A celestial choir singing

30 degrees: A duck pond and its brood

Taurus Sabian Symbols

1 degree: A clear mountain stream

2 degrees: An electrical storm

3 degrees: Steps up to a lawn blooming with clover

4 degrees: The rainbow's pot of gold

5 degrees: A widow at an open grave

6 degrees: A bridge being built across a gorge

7 degrees: A woman of Samaria

8 degrees: A sleigh without snow

9 degrees: A Christmas tree decorated

10 degrees: A Red Cross nurse

11 degrees: A woman sprinkling flowers

12 degrees: Window shoppers

13 degrees: A man handling baggage

14 degrees: Children playing at the beach

15 degrees: A man muffled up with a rakish silk hat

16 degrees: An old man attempting vainly to reveal the mysteries

17 degrees: A battle between the swords and the torches

18 degrees: A woman holding a bag out of a window

19 degrees: A newly formed continent

20 degrees: Wind, clouds and haste

21 degrees: A finger pointing in an open book

22 degrees: White dove over troubled waters

23 degrees: A jewelry shop

24 degrees: A mounted Indian with scalp locks

25 degrees: A large well-kept public park

26 degrees: A man serenading his love

27 degrees: An old native woman selling beads

28 degrees: A woman pursued by mature romance

29 degrees: Two cobblers working at a table

30 degrees: A peacock parading on an ancient lawn

RELATED: What Are The Zodiac Star Signs? Dates, Traits & Meanings Of Each

Gemini Sabian Symbols

1 degree: A glass-bottomed boat in still water

2 degrees: Santa Claus filling stockings furtively

3 degrees: The garden of the Tuileries

4 degrees: Holly and mistletoe

5 degrees: A radical magazine

6 degrees: Drilling for oil

7 degrees: An old-fashioned well

8 degrees: An industrial strike

9 degrees: A quiver filled with arrows

10 degrees: An airplane falling

11 degrees: A new path of realism in experience

12 degrees: A woman asserting herself

13 degrees: A great musician at his piano

14 degrees: A conversation by telepathy

15 degrees: Two children talking

16 degrees: A woman suffragist haranguing

17 degrees: The head of health dissolved into the head of mentality

18 degrees: Two men talking in a foreign language

19 degrees: A large archaic volume

20 degrees: A cafeteria

21 degrees: A labor demonstration

22 degrees: A barn dance

23 degrees: Three fledglings in a nest, high in a tree

24 degrees: Children skating on ice

25 degrees: A man trimming palms

26 degrees: Winter frost in the woods

27 degrees: A gypsy coming out of the forest

28 degrees: A man declared bankrupt

29 degrees: The first mockingbird in spring

30 degrees: Bathing beauties

Cancer Sabian Symbols

1 degree: A furled and unfurled flag displayed from a vessel

2 degrees: A man suspended over a vast level place

3 degrees: A man all bundled up in fur, leading a shaggy deer

4 degrees: A cat arguing with a mouse

5 degrees: An automobile is wrecked by a train

6 degrees: Game birds feathering their nests

7 degrees: Two fairies on a moonlit night

8 degrees: Rabbits dressed in clothes and on parade

9 degrees: A tiny, nude woman reaching in the water for a fish

10 degrees: A large diamond, not completely cut

11 degrees: A clown making grimaces

12 degrees: A woman nursing a baby

13 degrees: One hand slightly flexed with a very prominent thumb

14 degrees: A very old man facing a vast dark space to the northeast

15 degrees: A group of people who have overeaten and enjoyed it

16 degrees: A man before a square with a manuscript roll before him

17 degrees: The germ grows into knowledge and life

18 degrees: A hen scratching for her chicks

19 degrees: A priest performing a marriage ceremony

20 degrees: Gondoliers in a serenade

21 degrees: A Prima Donna singing

22 degrees: A woman awaiting a sailboat

23 degrees: The meeting of a literary society

24 degrees: A woman and two men on a bit of sunlit land facing South

25 degrees: Dark shadow or mantle thrown suddenly over the right shoulder

26 degrees: Contentment and happiness in luxury, people reading on davenports

27 degrees: A storm in a canyon

28 degrees: A modern Pocahontas

29 degrees: A muse weighing twins

30 degrees: A Daughter of the American Revolution

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Leo Sabian Symbols

1 degree: A case of apoplexy

2 degrees: An epidemic of mumps

3 degrees: A woman having her hair bobbed

4 degrees: Man formally dressed and a deer with its horns folded

5 degrees: Rock formations at the edge of a precipice

6 degrees: An old-fashioned woman and an up-to-date girl

7 degrees: The constellations in the sky

8 degrees: A Bolshevik propagandist

9 degrees: Glass blowers

10 degrees: Early morning dew

11 degrees: Children on a swing in a huge oak tree

12 degrees: An evening lawn party

13 degrees: An old sea captain

14 degrees: The human soul awaiting opportunity for expression

15 degrees: A pageant

16 degrees: Sunshine just after a storm

17 degrees: A non-vested church choir

18 degrees: A teacher of chemistry

19 degrees: A houseboat party

20 degrees: The Zuni Sun worshippers

21 degrees: Chickens lost and stumbling

22 degrees: A carrier pigeon

23 degrees: A bareback rider

24 degrees: An untidy unkempt man

25 degrees: A large camel crossing the desert

26 degrees: A rainbow

27 degrees: Daybreak

28 degrees: Many little birds on the limb of a large tree

29 degrees: A mermaid

30 degrees: An unsealed letter

Virgo Sabian Symbols

1 degree: A man's head

2 degrees: A large cross upright

3 degrees: Two angels bringing protection

4 degrees: Three children playing together

5 degrees: A Man dreaming of fairies

6 degrees: A merry-go-round

7 degrees: A harem

8 degrees: First dancing instruction

9 degrees: A man makes a futuristic drawing

10 degrees: Two heads looking out and beyond the shadows

11 degrees: A boy molded in his mother's aspirations for him

12 degrees: A bride with her veil snatched away

13 degrees: A strong hand supplanting political hysteria

14 degrees: A family tree

15 degrees: An ornamental handkerchief

16 degrees: An orangutan

17 degrees: A volcanic in eruption

18 degrees: A Ouija board

19 degrees: A swimming race

20 degrees: An automobile caravan

21 degrees: A girls’ basketball team

22 degrees: A royal coat of arms

23 degrees: An animal trainer

24 degrees: Mary and her white lamb

25 degrees: A flag at half-mast

26 degrees: A boy with a censor

27 degrees: High society women at tea

28 degrees: A bald-headed man

29 degrees: A man gaining secret knowledge from a paper he's reading

30 degrees: A false call unheard in attention to immediate service

Libra Sabian Symbols

1 degree: A butterfly made perfect by a dart through it

2 degrees: The light of the sixth race transmuted to the seventh (ascension)

3 degrees: The dawn of a new day, everything changed

4 degrees: A group around a campfire

5 degrees: A man teaching the true inner knowledge

6 degrees: The ideals of a man abundantly crystallized

7 degrees: A woman feeding chickens and protecting them from the hawks

8 degrees: A blazing fireplace in a deserted home

9 degrees: Three old masters hanging in an art gallery

10 degrees: A canoe approaching safety through dangerous waters

11 degrees: A professor peering over his glasses

12 degrees: Miners are emerging from a mine

13 degrees: Children blowing soap bubbles

14 degrees: A noon nap

15 degrees: Circular paths

16 degrees: A boat landing washed away

17 degrees: A retired sea captain

18 degrees: Two men placed under arrest

19 degrees: A gang of robbers in hiding

20 degrees: A Jewish rabbi

21 degrees: A crowd upon the beach

22 degrees: A child giving birds a drink at a fountain

23 degrees: Chanticleer rooster

24 degrees: A third wing on the left side of a butterfly

25 degrees: Information in the symbol of an autumn leaf

26 degrees: An eagle and a large white dove turning one into the other

27 degrees: An airplane hovering overhead

28 degrees: A man in the midst of brightening influences

29 degrees: Humanity seeking to bridge the span of knowledge

30 degrees: Three mounds of knowledge on a philosopher's head

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Scorpio Sabian Symbols

1 degree: A sight-seeing bus

2 degrees: A broken bottle and spilled perfume

3 degrees: A house raising

4 degrees: A youth holding a lighted candle

5 degrees: A massive, rocky shore

6 degrees: A gold rush

7 degrees: Deep-sea divers

8 degrees: The moon shining across a lake

9 degrees: Dental work

10 degrees: A fellowship supper

11 degrees: A drowning man rescued

12 degrees: An embassy ball

13 degrees: An inventor experimenting

14 degrees: Telephone linemen at work

15 degrees: Children playing around five mounds of sand

16 degrees: A girl's face breaking into a smile

17 degrees: A woman, the father of her own child

18 degrees: A woods rich in autumn coloring

19 degrees: A parrot listening and then talking

20 degrees: Woman drawing two dark curtains aside

21 degrees: A soldier derelict in his duty

22 degrees: Hunters starting out for ducks

23 degrees: A rabbit metamorphosed into a fairy

24 degrees: Crowds coming down the mountain to listen to one man

25 degrees: An X-ray

26 degrees: Indians making camp

27 degrees: A military band on the march

28 degrees: The king of the fairies approaching his domain

29 degrees: An Indian woman pleading to her chief for the lives of her children

30 degrees: The Halloween jester

Sagittarius Sabian Symbols

1 degree: An army and campfire

2 degrees: The ocean covered with whitecaps

3 degrees: Two men playing chess

4 degrees: A little child learning to walk

5 degrees: An old owl up in a tree

6 degrees: A game of cricket

7 degrees: Cupid knocking at the door

8 degrees: Rocks and things forming a blockade

9 degrees: A mother with her children on the stairs

10 degrees: A golden haired 'goddess of opportunity'

11 degrees: The lamp of physical enlightenment at the left temple

12 degrees: A flag that turns into an eagle that crows

13 degrees: A widow's past is brought to light

14 degrees: The Pyramids and the Sphinx

15 degrees: The groundhog looking for its shadow

16 degrees: Sea gulls watching a ship

17 degrees: A spiritual sunrise ceremony

18 degrees: Tiny children in sun hats

19 degrees: Pelicans moving their habitat

20 degrees: Men cutting through ice

21 degrees: A child and a dog with borrowed eyeglasses

22 degrees: A laundromat

23 degrees: Immigrants entering

24 degrees: A bluebird standing at the door of the house

25 degrees: A young boy on a hobbyhorse

26 degrees: A flag-bearer

27 degrees: A sculptor

28 degrees: An old bridge over a beautiful stream

29 degrees: A young man mowing the lawn

30 degrees: The Pope

Capricorn Sabian Symbols

1 degree: An Indian chief demanding recognition

2 degrees: Three stained-glass windows, one damaged by bombardment

3 degrees: The human soul receptive to growth and understanding

4 degrees: A party entering a large canoe

5 degrees: Indians rowing a canoe and dancing a war dance

6 degrees: A dark archway and ten logs at the bottom

7 degrees: A veiled prophet of power

8 degrees: Birds in the house singing happily

9 degrees: An angel carrying a harp

10 degrees: An albatross feeding from the hand

11 degrees: A large group of pheasants

12 degrees: A student of nature lecturing

13 degrees: A fire worshipper

14 degrees: Ancient bas-relief carved in granite

15 degrees: Many toys in the children's ward of a hospital

16 degrees: Boys and girls at gym

17 degrees: A girl surreptitiously bathing in the nude

18 degrees: The Union Jack

19 degrees: A child of about five carrying a huge shopping bag

20 degrees: A hidden choir singing

21 degrees: A relay race

22 degrees: A general accepting defeat gracefully

23 degrees: Two awards for bravery in war

24 degrees: A woman entering a convent

25 degrees: An oriental rug dealer

26 degrees: A water sprite

27 degrees: A mountain pilgrimage

28 degrees: A large aviary

29 degrees: A woman reading tea leaves

30 degrees: A secret business conference

RELATED: What It Means If Your Date Of Birth Falls On A 'Cusp' Between Zodiac Signs

Aquarius Sabian Symbols

1 degree: An old adobe mission

2 degrees: An unexpected thunderstorm

3 degrees: A deserter from the navy

4 degrees: A Hindu healer

5 degrees: A council of ancestors

6 degrees: A performer of a mystery play

7 degrees: A child born out of an eggshell

8 degrees: Beautifully gowned wax figures

9 degrees: A flag turned into an eagle

10 degrees: A popularity that proves ephemeral

11 degrees: Man tête-à-tête with his inspiration

12 degrees: People on stairs graduated upwards

13 degrees: A barometer

14 degrees: A train entering a tunnel

15 degrees: Two lovebirds sitting on a fence

16 degrees: A big-businessman at his desk

17 degrees: A watchdog standing guard

18 degrees: A man unmasked

19 degrees: A forest fire quenched

20 degrees: A big white dove, a message bearer

21 degrees: Woman disappointed, disillusioned

22 degrees: A rug placed on a floor for children to play

23 degrees: big bear sitting down and waving all its paws

24 degrees: Man turning his back on his passions teaches from his experience

25 degrees: A butterfly with the right wing more perfectly formed

26 degrees: A hydrometer

27 degrees: An ancient pottery bowl filled with fresh violets

28 degrees: A tree felled and sawed

29 degrees: Butterfly emerging from a chrysalis

30 degrees: A beautiful field in bloom

Pisces Sabian Symbols

1 degree: A public market

2 degrees: A squirrel hiding from hunters

3 degrees: A petrified forest

4 degrees: Heavy car traffic on a narrow isthmus

5 degrees: A church bazaar

6 degrees: Officers on dress parade

7 degrees: A cross lying on the rocks

8 degrees: A girl blowing a bugle

9 degrees: A jockey

10 degrees: An aviator in the clouds

11 degrees: Men seeking illumination

12 degrees: An examination of initiates

13 degrees: A sword in a museum

14 degrees: A lady in fox fur

15 degrees: An officer preparing to drill his men

16 degrees: The flow of inspiration

17 degrees: A parade

18 degrees: A gigantic tent

19 degrees: A master instructing his pupil

20 degrees: A table set for an evening meal

21 degrees: A little white lamb, a child and a servant

22 degrees: A man bringing down the new law from Sinai

23 degrees: Spiritual phenomena

24 degrees: An inhabited island

25 degrees: The purging of the priesthood

26 degrees: A new moon that divides its influences

27 degrees: A harvest moon

28 degrees: A fertile garden under the full moon

29 degrees: A prism

30 degrees: The Great Stone Face

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Kate Rose is an artist, writer, passionate yogi, spiritual astrologist, relationship and life coach, and motivational speaker. As a spiritual intuitive, she practices the religion of astrology and love. For more of her work, visit her website.