“The difference between a good and bad life is how well you walk through fire”. ~ Jung
We are wired for heroism. You know that satisfaction you feel when you’ve done what you set out to do is dopamine in action. Dopamine is our main motivation neurotransmitter. Our body is designed to fire dopamine neurons, which gives us a surge of pleasure, when we complete a task, both big or small.
Human beings are constantly in search of that dopamine hit, so goal-oriented action is addictive. When there is lack of drive, focus and apathy or the inability, perceived or real, to pursue and achieve goals, the body mind eventually turns to addictive behavior in search for that instant dopamine boost.
Addictions produce an unnatural surge of dopamine, which in turn makes the body down regulate dopamine, and the vicious cycle of low dopamine and addiction follows. Also the relationship between dopamine and testosterone is bidirectional and low dopamine lowers testosterone and low testosterone lowers dopamine. The pleasure surge of dopamine we are all looking for should be carefully guarded for true rewards and meaningful activity.
In Vedic Astrology, the Sun is main indicator of enthusiasm, motivation and goal driven action. In our horoscope the Sun shows the type of energy that sustains us and allows us to stay focused and keep moving forward despite the odds.
In Sanskrit, another word for the Sun is Shura, which means a hero!! In real life only, the rare evolved sun is a natural born hero, most of us will need to learn to elevate our Sun
The Sun as the prime motivator means that our life’s journey, will be greatly influenced by the condition of the Sun in the horoscope, which can be weak, prominent or evolved.
Let’s begin by looking at an evolved or ideal Sun, as described in the ancient and prime textbook on Vedic Astrology, Brihat Parashara Hora Shastra.
“Honey-yellow eyed is the Sun, square and radiantly pure, of Pitta nature, intelligent, masculine, with but of little hair."
The golden hue of the Sun’s eyes signifies a spiritual nature, and sweetness of honey symbolizes that evolved masculine energy has intersected with the feminine. It leads, protects guards and takes charge but without domination and with empathy and understanding.
The Sun has a square body, showing steadfastness, consistency, reliability and the ability to "stay put". Physiologically, both male and females with a strong Sun in the chart will tend towards more square builds and wider shoulders. A strong moon, or lunar energy gives curves, and a more rounded body in both genders also.
In Ayurveda the Sun is pitta, or fiery in nature. Fire is equated with courage, valor, commanding presence and boldness. A strong Pitta constitution is usually required to take the "heat" needed to be a hero, lead and stay the course. Of course, fire can also burn if you get too close so in an evolved sun must also have enough water element to prevent scorching or becoming a tyrant.
The Sun is radiantly pure or luminous because a well-disposed sun in the horoscope enlightens the personality, gives intelligence and ability and courage to take principled action.
Finally the scripture talks about thinning hair. In Ayurveda astrology thinning hair is one of the symptoms of high Pitta as well as high testosterone, in both male and female.
Now let’s look at the placement of the Sun in the horoscope
Like all good heroes and leaders, the Sun thrives in houses 9, 10, and 11, which are all transpersonal and focused on leading others and our outward journeys. (The moon on the other hand thrives on inward journeys that are personal and private).
The Sun also prospers in the fire signs of Leo, Sagittarius, and Aries, where it is exalted. These are naturally leading initiating and commanding environments, which match the Sun’s nature.
The sun loses his vitality in water element houses and signs, especially the fourth and twelfth houses and the Zodiac signs of Cancer and Pisces. But here it has the potential to lead a daring inward journey and make his mark on the world behind the scenes.
The Sun is debilitated and weakened in Libra because the balance and compromise seeking Libra takes away the Sun’s ability to shine as a leader/hero and take decisive action. Still a well-disposed debilitated Sun here has the potential to give an open-minded, shared power, leadership style.
The Sun conjunct Mars can lose its maturity to Mars’ rashness and impulsiveness. He may become too competitive – the need to win superseding the need to lead.
The Sun loses his confidence when placed under the shadow of Saturn. Saturn is the servant of the Zodiac and in awe of authority. This makes the Sun second guess himself and loose his assured stride. Saturn can also curtail the ambition and drive of the Sun. Sometimes this can also lead to overcompensation of Saturnian and Solar energies. But again, if the overall chart is well disposed this can also make for a humble and duty-bound hero or leader.
A close conjunction with Rahu, eclipses out the Sun's selflessness, which makes the Sun push forward his personal agenda and ego gratification. If the Moon is also afflicted both emotionally driven action and pride will drive the leader/hero.
In Western Astrology, the Sun is generally seen as a helpful or benefic planet but in Vedic Astrology the Sun is considered a malific or hardship giving planet. Being a hero or leader is not a dream come true, but a duty and responsibility and burden the Sun voluntarily takes on. Sun planetary periods usually put you in circumstances where many people are depending and counting on you. An evolved Sun thrives here and a weak Sun will break under this pressure.
For many the Sun may be prominent and powerful but not yet fully evolved. This will give leadership drive and success but the Sun’s dasha or planetary periods can also bring a crisis of self-confidence. These can be seen as karmic efforts to purify the Sun and to help the hero transcend any remaining pride and attachment.
A tarnished but prominent Sun is the one we need to watch out for. It can propel someone to name, fame and produce many admirers and followers. False charisma and pride is one of the hallmarks of a fallen hero, but it can be very alluring to people with their own Sun karmic issues seeking super stardom or special status as well as a dopamine surge through the leader.
Our current culture values the more outward, magnetic qualities of the Sun and tends to overlook the silent behind the scenes strength of the hero. Therefore, making predictions we need to be careful assigning black and white, good and bad, labels to a planet like the Sun.
The Sun is the central figure of the Zodiac and the dispeller of darkness He is the universal Soul, Atma that connects us to our higher self, the Moon is Jeeva, the mental body that connects us to the physical plane of existence. The more evolved the Sun, the more anchored we are in Unity Consciousness. The more evolved the moon the more anchored we are on the earth plane. When the moon reaches out and intersects with the Sun, a true leader and a true hero is born.
Finally, in the Vedic description of the course of souls after death, the "path of the Sun" leads liberated souls to the realm of Brahman; while the path of the moon leads back to another physical birth.