What Is An Opposition In Astrology? Meaning And Effects

The opposition aspect in astrology highlights an area of contention or calamity.

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When reading an astrology chart, there are five major aspects one needs to look out for: conjunction, opposition, sextile, square, and trine. And depending on the planets and points involved, these astrology aspects can either be beneficial or harmful.

The opposition aspect is one of the trickier ones in this group. And when you have this in your birth chart or in the synastry between two people, it usually highlights an area of contention or calamity.


What is an opposition in astrology?

The opposition aspect in astrology is formed when two planets or points are 180 degrees apart from each other on the zodiac wheel. It represents two energies that do not see eye to eye in most things but, nevertheless, share some similarities.

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Oppositions are always formed between zodiac signs that are friendly towards each other (earth signs and water signs, or fire signs and air signs) and have the same modality (mutable, fixed, or cardinal). This makes the opposition weird because, despite the zodiac signs sharing many similarities, they act in ways that are contrary to the other.

For example, Aries and Libra are opposites in astrology. Both are cardinal signs and friendly because Aries is a fire sign and Libra is an air sign. However, while Aries and Libra both love socializing and hanging out with friends, Aries is a very impulsive, me-focused zodiac sign, while Libra is the opposite of impulsive and always takes other people and their environment into account before doing anything.

The following are the six opposition pairs in astrology:

  • Aries and Libra
  • Taurus and Scorpio
  • Gemini and Sagittarius
  • Cancer and Capricorn
  • Leo and Aquarius
  • Virgo and Pisces

Oppositions in the birth chart

Oppositions are usually considered a bad astrology aspect. Mainly because it almost always points to an area of conflict in an astrology chart. But oppositions are not always a negative aspect. It depends on the planets and points forming the opposition and the nature of the individual (or individuals) involved in it.


For example, Neptune opposite Sun in a person's birth chart reveals that the person is generous in spirit, has big dreams and ambitions, and likes to romanticize life and their capabilities. But because it's an opposition, the Sun prefers to express this through staying in touch with reality and gathering power and influence while Neptune pushes the native to chase after elusive dreams and becoming formless and non-individualistic.

If the person whose birth chart has this aspect is inexperienced, immature, or narrow-minded, the opposition will manifest in a negative way and create an internal conflict where the generosity of Neptune conflicts with the power-hungry nature of the Sun. And together the opposition can make the person come across as a grandiose narcissist who is not as competent as they boast they are.

But if the person is mature, understands the nuances of life, and has a well-balanced perspective, the opposition in their chart will prevent them from going extreme in either one or the other direction. And thus, they will become like the rare-breed humble tenured professor who has a decorated career but doesn't use it to stomp down on other people, preferring instead to teach the young and help them unlock their full potential.

Oppositions can bring out the moderate side of an individual. But usually, it manifests more negatively. So it's important to not be idealistic while looking at this aspect. Rare things are rare for a reason.


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Oppositions in synastry

In a synastry chart between two individuals, the opposition aspect can literally reveal an area where the two people will be butting heads with each other all the time.

For example, a Venus opposite Jupiter synastry can represent a stereotypical married couple where both partners behave more like enemies than partners and constantly keep bickering with each other and ruining the other's plans. And a Mercury opposite Venus synastry can reveal that one person's intelligence and communication style are contrary to what the other finds attractive and pleasing.

Sometimes oppositions in synastry can also reveal two individuals who will always take the opposite side in an argument or a debate. And the only way to harness this energy positively would be to put them in a think tank together to prevent an echo chamber from forming.


Transiting oppositions

The opposition aspect can also be formed between a person's natal planet (or point) and a transiting planet or point. And these often reveal significant times in the native's life when certain specific situations are more likely to happen.

For example, transiting Moon opposite natal Mercury can make an individual indecisive and create fights between them and their mother, sibling, or children. But since Moon transits only last for a few days, the impact of this opposition won't be as strong as in an outer planet opposition.

Such a thing can be observed, for example, in a transiting Saturn opposite natal Sun. People are more likely to challenge the authority of the native during the long months that Saturn forms this opposition aspect with the native's Sun.


But that's not all there is to the opposition aspect in astrology. You can find it in special astrological formations like the T-square, Grand Square, Grand Cross, and Kite.

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Valeria Black is a tarot reader and astrology nerd with a dash of wicked humor on the side. Follow her on Instagram for more.