How come some people grow up in ordinary circumstances and yet end up in the strangest careers? The Midheaven, also known as the M.C. (from the Latin medium coeli, meaning "middle of the heavens"), frequently explains it. (Other factors in your choice of career include planets in the tenth house, the planet that rules your Midheaven, and planets in the sixth house of work.)
The Midheaven is the highest point on the ecliptic and in your chart. It doesn't determine your talents, but it affects your public persona and influences the approach you take to authority, status, and career. The M.C. also says a lot about one of your parents. Which one? Some astrologers think it refers to the mother, others to the opposite-sex parent, still others to the most influential parent. In short, it's definitely one or the other. You choose.
Directly opposite the Midheaven is the I.C., or imum coeli (from the Latin imum coeli, meaning "lowest part of the heavens"). The I.C. influences your attitude toward home and family, affects the circumstances at the end of your life, and, like the M.C., is associated with one of your parents. It's sometimes described as representing the "base of the personality," which suggests that its importance is greater than it appears.
If you have an accurate copy of your birth chart, you can find your Midheaven on or near the cusp of the tenth house at the twelve o'clock spot. If you're using the material in this book to determine your Ascendant (see Chapter 3), assume that your Midheaven is in the same sign that appears on the cusp of the tenth house. Either way, your I.C. is directly opposite the M.C., at or near the lowest point of your chart.
The easiest way to get an accurate copy of your chart is to go on the Internet. Free charts are available from www.alabe.com,www.astro.com, or www. chaosastrology.com.
The Midheaven affects your attitude toward career. The I.C. affects your attitude toward home and family.
¡^ Aries Midheaven: You have a daring attitude toward your career. You respond to a challenge and are most jazzed when you're launching a new endeavor. You don't mind taking a risk. What you do mind is being powerless. Being your own boss is your best move.
Your I.C. is in Libra, indicating that while you may be willing to fight in the professional world, you need a serene and harmonious home. Take the advice of Aries artist William Morris in The Beauty of Life: "Have
nothing in your houses that you do not know to be useful, or believe to be beautiful." And if in doubt as to which matters more — usefulness or beauty — go for the latter.
I Taurus Midheaven: Security matters. You need to do something tangible in your career — and whatever it is, you need to receive substantial rewards. Fortunately, you have the stamina to make it happen.
The planet ruling your Midheaven is Venus, suggesting that artistic areas may appeal to you.
Your I.C. is in Scorpio, which suggests that your home is a hideaway where you can express your deepest passions and find the privacy you crave.
I Gemini Midheaven: In your career, you require diversity, intellectual stimulation, and the ability to fulfill your curiosity. Writing is favored, as is anything involving other forms of communication. You also benefit from the chance to take frequent jaunts out of the office. You don't need to go far — you just need to go out.
Your I.C. is Sagittarius, which suggests that you move frequently (or would like to), that your domestic life is shaped by strong religious principles, or that you secretly long to be an expatriate. You agree with the Gemini writer G. K. Chesterton, who wrote in What's Wrong with the World, "The home is not the one tame place in a world of adventure; it is the one wild place in a world of rules and set tasks."
I Cancer Midheaven: You need a career where you can use your intuition and make emotional connections. Your stated purpose may be to provide security for your family, but you also need to be involved in the wider community and to receive recognition from authority figures there.
Your I.C. is Capricorn, which suggests that you have traditional taste in interior decoration and that you take a conservative attitude toward family, an arena in which you shoulder an enormous burden of responsibility.
I Leo Midheaven: You need a career that provides room for creative expression, opportunities for leadership, and public recognition. Your pride is on the line here, so the more acknowledgment you receive for your professional efforts, the happier you will be.
Your I.C. is Aquarius, which indicates that you have an idiosyncratic attitude toward home and family. As a result, there's something unusual about your domestic life — and about one of your parents as well.
Is it fair to say that the Icelandic singer/composer/ performer Bjork, an experimental artist who has been in the public eye since childhood, presents a supremely weird and riveting image? I think it is. What makes her unique are the two major angles of her chart: her Ascendant, which describes her persona, and the Midheaven, or M.C., which represents her career. In her case, each angle is conjunct one or more of the weighty outer planets. Her Ascendant, like her Sun and Moon, is in Scorpio, making her a triple Scorpio — an intense combination of influences. Closest to her Ascendant is Neptune, the planet of fantasy and illusion. Its prominence boosts her musical creativity. Its presence in the first house makes it easy for her to alter her image and play with her appearance in highly imaginative ways. She's no doubt a shape-shifter. What else would make her don her infamous swan dress, which looked like a cross between a dead bird and a 1980s pouf skirt? In classic Neptunian style, the meaning was indecipherable and the alluring strangeness unforgettable.
Equally important in her chart is a three-way conjunction of transformative Pluto, unpredictable Uranus, and the M.C. These heavy-duty placements suggest that she's a risk-taker with a compelling need to change the world in unconventional ways. As for her parents, they're powerful people in their own right (her father, a labor leader, was famous in Iceland before she was) and their influence on her is huge.
i Virgo Midheaven: Whatever your career (or community activities) may be, you succeed because you do your homework and pay attention to the small stuff. You work hard, and people come to rely on you. Still, you may feel that you don't receive the recognition you deserve. Keep in mind that Virgo is the sign of the martyr, and resist the temptation to torture yourself.
Your I.C. is Pisces, which indicates that feelings of abandonment in childhood make you long for a serene home filled with spiritual solace. Your attitude is that of the French philosopher Gaston Bachelard, who wrote in The Poetics of Space, "If I were asked to name the chief benefit of the house, I should say: The house shelters day-dreaming, the house protects the dreamer, the house allows one to dream in peace."
i Libra Midheaven: You want a pleasant, rational career that enables you to balance your public and private lives. Ideally, you'd enjoy a career in the arts or one that includes plenty of socializing. You easily attract people who can help you reach your goals.
Your I.C. is Aries, suggesting that you can renew your energy and express your individuality most actively at home. But you can also be rebellious and short-tempered with members of your family.
i Scorpio Midheaven: You gravitate toward a career that offers you the opportunity to feel intensely and perhaps to exercise authority. Once you set your mind on a goal, you're determined to achieve it. But you can tie yourself in knots over the emotional complexity of your world, and you're always aware of the political undercurrents.
Your I.C. is Taurus, suggesting that financial security and the comforts of family are extremely important to you. Owning a home and land brings you satisfaction.
i Sagittarius Midheaven: You're happiest with a career that offers independence, the opportunity to broaden your mental horizons, and plenty of frequent-flyer miles. Within your profession or community, you're known for your high ideals and powerful beliefs. You have a tendency to idealize the people you work with (or for). And although you benefit from your encounters with authority figures, they may rub you the wrong way anyway.
Your I.C. is Gemini, suggesting that your home is a busy place filled with books, magazines, and communication devices of every sort. You'd love to have two homes and you may move frequently.
i Capricorn Midheaven: Reliable and ambitious, you're willing to do whatever is necessary to achieve the success you wish for. Major responsibilities regularly end up on your salad plate. Secretly, you're complimented by the responsibility. To maintain optimism, you need clear signs of progress — things like promotions, raises, and a corner office with a ficus tree. You do well in a corporate environment.
The planet ruling your Midheaven is Saturn.
Your I.C. is Cancer, suggesting that your ties to family in general, and your mother in particular, are strong. Living near water soothes you.
i Aquarius Midheaven: Your attitude toward career and community is unconventional and unique — and so is your ideal career. Because your skills are utterly unique, your ideal job is shaped to you personally. You do well in forward-looking, progressive areas that provide benefits to the public.
Your I.C. is Leo. You take pride in your home, which is a place where you can express your emotions and your creative talents. Even if you're shy elsewhere, you're the star at home.
i Pisces Midheaven: Compassion and/or imagination determine your career choices. You may be drawn to the helping professions or to an expressive field, such as music or dance. Either way, your intuition and psychic abilities guide you.
Your I.C. is Virgo, suggesting that a clean, neat environment at home gives you the security and grounding that you need. You may move frequently, always in search of an ideal home.
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