One Planet To Rule Them All: How To Find & Tribute the Planetary Ruler of Your Stars -- A Primer on Astrological Magic!
In this post, I’m going to share a few breezy ways to combine astrology & ritual, starting with the very entry point of the natal chart: your planetary ruler!
Your chart’s planetary ruler gives you the snap-crackle-pop of clarity about your original self; the vibe you naturally thrum at. This info can reveal who we really are, in this present cycle, & who we want to become, if we’re able to keep up our energy & focus. Meditating on the mythos of our natal chart can also help us better read the symbolism & relationships in our lives.
And by making yourself more conscious of it you’ll build quiet confidence about who you are & how you vibe. 👍🏻
If you’re witch-curious, or just yearning to get hands-on with astrology, tributing (or “paying charity to”) the planetary ruler of your stars is the perfect baby step into astrological magic: a spirit craft that pays careful attention to astrological timing, while also celebrating the unique energy of your life!
All of this is based on a little of what Rachel Capurso (Aeolian Heart Astrology) taught in the last round of her natal chart decoding course, DISCOVERY! (Read more about DISCOVERY here, which re-opens for enrollment very soon!)
Obviously, you have to dig up some scratch on what that ruler is, so you can feel out where & how that ruling planet’s energy manifests in your life, so that’s where we’ll start. ✨
HOW TO FIND YOUR PLANETARY RULER
The ruler of your whole natal chart is the ruling planet of your Rising Sign, which is the sign of the first angle of the natal chart (in most house systems): the Ascendent. ✨
Why would the Ascendent determine your chart ruler, & not, like, the planetary ruler of your Sun, or Moon, or even your North Node?
Because all other planetary energies in your chart enter through your Rising Sign. The Ascendent is the doorway of your energetic consciousness. Its sign (your Rising Sign) was the sign rising into the sky the moment & place you entered the world. It’s the most sublime energy in your life, the foundation of your energetic consciousness.
Basically, the Ascendent is the starting line for your life journey, & your Rising Sign sums up the mood & tone!
Whatever planets are transiting you & whatever else is going on in your natal chart, it all smacks of that one planet ruling your Rising Sign. One Planet to Rule Them All. 💫
To get started, we have to dig in & find out everything we can about the ruler of your Rising Sign. You might want to grab a diary or designate a new notebook, just so you have a place to record your initial discovery.
Later, you’ll need space (analog and digital) to collect quotes, images, & your own impressions.
Remember: what you collect will inform your tribute!
First, score a copy of your natal chart.
This post tells you where you can get your chart. For the chart to produce an accurate Rising Sign, you’ll need the exact time, location, & date of your birth.
Why do you need the exact time? Rising Signs change every two hours, so the precise time is key, & can be found on your birth certificate. If you don’t have one, get in touch with the county where you were born & ask for it.
When you get your chart, look to angle on the left-hand side of the inner circle, OR for the letters ASC, which stand for Ascendent.
Remember, your Rising Sign is one of the same as the sign of your Ascendent, which is the first angle.
Okay, once located, answer this question: What’s your Rising Sign?
Now, answer this question: Which planet(s) rules that sign?
If you don’t know off the top of your head, Google is here to help.
BTW—it’s worth noting any planets lounging close by your Ascendent (within 5 degrees of the Ascendent in either the First or Twelfth Houses), because they’re definitely throwing their energy into the mix. You may even realize that you closely identify with that planet more than the ruling planet of your Rising Sign!
You might have two potential rulers (or more if there are any conjunct planets), especially if your Rising Sign is Scorpio, Aquarius, or Pisces. These signs have co-rulers: one Personal Planet (Mercury, Venus, or Mars, but also Jupiter or Saturn) & one Outer Planet (Uranus, Neptune, or Pluto).
Outer Planets are higher octaves of the Personal Planets… & they’re wild cards. I have a special caution on tributing Outer Planets, which you’ll find at the end of the post. ☢️
For now, just note any & all potential rulers, so you can start keying up your intuition for the research phase.
Next, run recon on your ruler(s).
At this point, to complement your notebook, you might want to open a fresh .doc for collecting quotes, as well as dedicate a new Pinterest board for storing images of your planetary ruler.
Do a general Google search for myths & deities attributed to the planet. What themes, experiences, & archetypes were related to your ruler?
In what era? For which culture(s)?
You’ll probably find several different deities attributed to your ruling planet. Write down the ones that immediately appeal, or that you’re curious to learn more about.
What are the most popular myths? How many different versions of that myth exist?
Next, look into icons. What imagery of the planet & associated deities are available? How was your ruler envisaged? In what kind of medium were they represented: sculpture, painted on pottery or canvas?
What superpowers or capabilities were attributed to your ruler? (By this point, you might be investigating specific deities.) Could your ruler shape shift into an animal or be found in a specific kind of scenery?
Look into specific rituals & worship practices. What kind of ceremonies were practiced? How were they accomplished, with what materials, at what times of year?
Are there any cultures still practicing these ceremonies? Can you find any modern derivatives?
For what purposes was your deity invoked: marriage rites, funeral rites, consecration? For bountiful harvests, for prophetic dreams, for successful battle?
What kind of influence did this deity confer onto worshippers?
Go wider than just the mainstream Greco-Roman myths. Defer to your actual ancestry, if colonization hasn’t obliterated the information. What stories & deities did your people attribute to this planet? How does the themes & symbolism differ?
Most critically: do you vibe with that? Any prickling of recognition?
REMEMBER, this is extracurricular. You don’t lose points for going down any rabbit holes, or for vibing with the most dubious, hokey information out there. Follow your curiosity & make your own inferences!
Finally, start planning your tribute.
A tribute can be a full-tilt, one-and-done ritual you plan months in advance, or a daily habit you pick up. You can build a space (literally) in your home for monthly tributes, or coordinate an annual group event according to your ruler’s celestial schedule.
The basic outcome: creating time & space for a little custom-fit sacred simmering with the divine. ✨
But before you can really plan your tribute, you have to personalize your ruler.
By which I mean: giving your chart ruler a “personality” you can imagine interacting with.
Start with all your favorites from the research. What was your favorite deity? Favorite story? Favorite image?
Why? Draw, write, or even talk out loud into your Voice Memo app: why does this deity resonate with you? What attributed power or quality do you feel naturally blessed with? Can you relate with a story or adventure regarding the deity?
Btw, not that you’re asking my permission, but it’s totally fine changing the gender of your planetary ruler.
For example, if Mercury rules your chart, but you’re not really vibing with Hermes or Thoth, look into Seshat, Goddess of Libraries. Still hella Mercurial, but a different kind of operator.
If deifying a planet feels like a huge stretch (but you’re obviously still curious enough to try making the leap), I outline tons of activities you can do to personalize & vivify archetypes in my post about Patron Goddesses. (Just FYI: I used Life Path Numerology in that one, not astrology.)
Here are the kinds of logistical Qs you also want to ask yourself:
What kind of materials do you want to work with in your tribute? Flowers, herbs, stones? The Tarot? Pen & paper? Colored light?
What kind of activities do you want to do? Instead of buying a bunch of clutter, would you rather plan a dance, recitation, or song?
What kind of setting do you want to tribute in? Indoors or outdoors? Big enough to fit a group, or small & private enough to fit just you, naked & alone?
When you start getting excited & ready to start walking it out, I have 5 ways to help you tribute your ruler, to be redressed however you desire!
5 Simple Ways To Tribute Your Planetary Ruler 💫
These 5 tips are super basic, but will help you find ways for personalizing astrology & experimenting with magic ritual, without totally upending your life.
Before I close out this post, I have a special disclaimer for working with the so-called “malefics,” Mars & Saturn, & the Outer Planets, which you might have encountered if your Rising Sign is Scorpio, Aquarius, or Pisces.
Also, during your research phase, you may have found that you vibe best not with the ruling planet of your Rising Sign, but with a planet conjunct your Ascendent.
If that’s true, follow your weird heart, & design a tribute to the conjunctive planet instead!
Tribute #1: Leave offerings on an altar.
For a lot of people, altars serve as workstations or like islands of sanity. Once a day or once a week they spiff up their altar digs, change out the display with the changing seasons, or keep it tidy until the new / full moon when they need a space to leave tokens to the god/dess their praising.
This post has my best tips for building a Goddess altar, which talks about arranging your altar with “official” correspondences, though it’s cool to just decorate your altar with super cute rigamarole you just want to see all the time.
Depending on what you want to tribute, & how often, you might not want to build an indoor altar at home, but instead find an outdoor space to tribute your ruler.
If you’re in love with the lush meadow depicted in The Empress card of the Tarot (ruled by Venus), go to one. Plan a day trip. Bring your kids along for an outdoor picnic, or go alone. Bring an instrument or a bluetooth speaker to play a song as tribute, or meditate while wearing a flower crown & clutching a hunk of rose quartz in each hand.
OR if tributing Seshat, a femme counterpart to Thoth, you might leave an offering at the library: a love letter tucked into your favorite YA novel, or a post-it with an encouraging message in the Quiet Study pavilion.
Outdoor altar spaces are also perfect for reenactment ceremonies: performing a myth as though it were a play. Just find a story or legend attributed to your ruler (or a deity attributed to your ruler), then plan an outfit, select a location, & go be weird. Invite your friends & make it a party!
If you do decide to tribute your ruler at an outdoor area, scout the location ahead of time (if possible), to feel it out. Do you feel connected, grounded, & centered in that place? Does its vibe befit the vibe you’re trying to channel into your life?
Tribute #2: Plan a Ritual for the New & Full Moon in Your Rising Sign
Moon magic is the perfect baby step into ritualism. The Moon rules our unconscious mind & shadow self. Tributing your chart ruler in a moon ritual feels like anointing a new bond, or a coming out party.
What’s the difference between a new & full moon ritual? Basically, the difference between sharing a first kiss & a simultaneous orgasm. But with a deification of your stars.
A new moon ritual represents a turning point. The ritual helps you bury an intention into your subconscious, so you start acting towards it, more easily sidestepping the conscious mind.
With your Rising Sign, you know this intention would have to do with appearances & self-perception, so a new moon ritual in your Rising Sign is a good occasion for committing to a brand new outlook, or practicing new behaviors that feel more aligned with who you really are / are destined to be.
A full moon ritual is way more cathartic. A full moon ritual in your Rising Sign purges old hang-ups about your identity & what you think it means. This is a perfect occasion for invoking a deity who empowers you to feel more comfortable in your skin.
The new moon in your Rising Sign happens only once a year (usually when the Sun is in that same sign), but the full moon in your Rising Sign could maybe happen twice. (Usually when the Sun is in the opposite sign on the zodiac wheel.)
In either case, you can perform a new / full moon ritual around the actual day the moon was in your Rising Sign, & still hit the mark. 👌🏻
To find out the NEW moon in your Rising Sign: Google “new moon in [your Rising Sign] + “the year”, or look up when the Sun moves into that Sign.
To find out the FULL moon in your Rising Sign: Google for the exact date: “full moon in [your Rising Sign]” + “the year.”
Don’t forget, paying tribute doesn’t have to mean performing purely symbolic activities. If plotting moon ceremonies sound like a racket, use the moon’s stationing in your Rising Sign to jumpstart the future or begin dissolving the past!
Let a new moon ritual instigate a phase in your life where you take inspired action, like volunteering on behalf of a underprivileged group you identify with or signing up for a certification class that will bring you into closer alignment with what you dream about doing.
For a full moon ritual, host a big party. Let your ruling planet’s correspondences inspire the theme & decor. Be as light- or heavy-handed with the astrological aspect as you wanna be.
Use the meaning you’ve conferred onto your ruler to guide your activities.Follow your own weird heart, that’s the point!
Tribute #3: Plan a Resurrection Day retreat.
Your Resurrection Day happens one day a year, like a birthday, when the Sun enters your Rising Sign at the exact degree of your Ascendent.
I actually bought the book on Amazon, but Natalie tells you how to find out your Resurrection Day in that podcast episode, so check it out!
Here’s an example: my Ascendent is at 6 degrees Scorpio, so if I’m planning a Resurrection Day retreat for 2019, I’d start monitoring my TimePassages app in the last days the Sun is in Virgo. (Towards the end of September, early October.)
When the Sun is finally at 6 degrees Scorpio, it’s my Resurrection Day. ✨
Robert Cole advises spending your Resurrection Day in solace, reconnecting with your inner self & deepest dreams. You could combine a moon magical-type of ritual with a hardcore goal-setting session, or build a seasonally-focused altar space that visually speaks to your ruler / most soulful self, like I talk about below!
Remember, paying tribute doesn’t need a ton of brouhaha or expert execution. It’s not what you’re doing or leaving behind, but the meaning you’ve attached to it.
The research you did was supposed to help you understand (& really think about) the hidden symbolism in your chart, & your tribute is born from the details you found to be really meaningful all on their own.
Tips for if your planetary ruler is a malefic or Outer Planet
One of the mesmerizing things about natal astrology is realizing when true-life events actually coincide with the little glyphs in your chart. The broader your study of the chart, the more humbled you feel about the crises & blessings you’ve experienced.
In might even convince you there’s definitely something metaphysical about this life. ✨
But what if your chart is ruled by some iffy planetary ju-ju?
My Rising Sign is Scorpio: co-ruled by Mars, a malefic, & Pluto, an Outer Planet.
My natal Pluto also lurks in my First House, hovering within 3 degrees of my Ascendent.
That makes me Plutonian: someone with heavy Pluto-play in their birth chart, celestially fated to be a strange, dark person, whose life will be shaped by mega-crisis level situations. (Super. ✨)
Natal astrology has def helped me de-personalize the true-life events that coincide with the glyphs in my chart, but even so, I don’t necessarily want to toast the Gods of War & Death.
If you’re in a similar sitch & feeling iffy about what’s turned out to be your planetary ruler, you have 3 options:
You can tribute your Rising Sign’s co-ruler instead. In my case, Mars, which is not a sketchy Outer Planet, but is considered a “malefic,” as in, a harbinger of challenges & drama. Malefics aren’t bad, just associated with the types of events we don’t welcome with open arms.
You can tribute a more desirable planet hanging out in your First House or conjuncting your Ascendent. This might be very cool, especially if you’ve got a “benefic,” such as Jupiter or Venus, close by. Benefics are associated with good tidings & easy luck. Google the conjunct planet + the sign of your First House, & see if that’s more favorable!
OR, if you’re similar to me, where the ruler of your Rising Sign and any conjunct planets are both iffy, you can pay tribute to the general spirit of your ruler, without naming any names or glorifying any particular aspect.
If you choose the third option, begin with inspiration: what do you appreciate about your life, so far, that fits your ruler’s theme?
Then, ask yourself: what can I do to sweeten that vibe?
⭐️ If Saturn rules your Rising Sign (♑️), you could build an altar commemorating the lessons learned during your Saturn Return! You don’t have to dedicate living space to Saturn, but you could devote a brand-new planner with a section for tracking bills & other important adult paperwork. (I talk about building a planner-grimoire in this post to help you get started!)
Or, if you’re fine with Mars as a ruler, plan ahead for an epic goal-setting session for the Aries new moon, which happens in the spring. Magically set an intention (for something like securing a promotion or buying a 3-month pass to the hot yoga-pilates studio that just opened up), & pound out a complete action-plan while in your new moon ritual space!
Because you have time to plan, show up to the sacred space ready to jam. Consider it an interview session with your Highest Self (or deepest self), who will totally endow you with the mojo to see your intention through, so long as you come prepared & focused.
⭐️ For an Aries full moon (when the Sun is in Libra), revel in the spoils of a recent conquest by booking a girls’ weekend getaway, or by signing up for an online workshop that will help you get assertive about your sex life. Full moons are about purges & Dionysian de-stressing, so your activity should feel like a guilty pleasure, but also prompt you to come away from it feeling renewed & empowered, which vibes with Mars.
⭐️ If Scorpio is your Rising Sign, build an ancestor altar in the fall to commemorate all who have come before. (I have a post on that coming soon, stay tuned.✨) Or wait until the moon is full or waning in ♏️ (get the Deluxe Moon app to start tracking), then perform a private ceremony for purging all the dead things in your life, then a follow-up activity to purify the mental, emotional, even physical space left behind. You don’t have to address any particular deity or image in order to pay tribute: the activity itself aligns with what your chart is all about.
You don’t have to invent or track down any crazy preamble to invoke your ruler, unless that thrills the hell out of you.
Tributes are really about affirming your personal evolution & weird vibe. Your natal chart, after all, is a horoscope: from your First House to the Twelfth, you’re on a spiraling, energetic path, with every planetary glyph shading your life experience in a different way.
That’s what you’re really honoring here.
Just show up with bright eyes, a full heart, & the best of intentions, just as you would if presenting a gift to the kind of person who already has everything, & would be delighted you even thought of them.
Btw—have you ever paid tribute to your ruler? Tell me in an email: what feels like it works, what turned out to be nonsense, & finally, what do you think’s important for noobs to know about astrological magic?
All images via Pinterest. Help me credit the creators here.