libra orb colourElements

Dates: September 23 - October 22

Ruling Planet: Venus

Element: Air

Mode: Cardinal

Symbol: The Scales

Qualities: Masculine/Positive/Extrovert

House Association: 7th

Symbol: libra symbol

Dates: September 23 - October 23

Type: The sign of the Diplomat

Colour: Pale blue, pink, pale green

Gemstones: Emerald, opal, labradorite, rose quartz, sapphire

Metal: Copper

Perfume: Galbanum

Day: Friday

Number: 6

Keywords: Harmoniously, diplomatically, perfectly

Rules: The Seventh House (the 'other half', marriage, all close relationships, open enemies, the legal process).

Positive traits: Charming, easy-going, romantic, diplomatic, idealistic, refined, far-sighted

Negative traits: Indecisive, resentful, frivolous, changeable, flirtatious, easily influenced, highly susceptible to flattery

Compatibility: Gemini and Aquarius Sexual partner: If you are female: TAURUS Sexual magnetism

If you are male: SAGITTARIUS Free expression

Parts of the body ruled: Kidneys, lumbar region of the back, skin

Glands, nerves & Arteries: Adrenal glands, lumbar nerves, blood vessels

Acupuncture meridian: Circulation

Possible ailments: Eczema, skin diseases, kidney and bladder infections, diabetes, abcesses, lumbago, vein disorders

Beneficial foods: Strawberries, plums

Diet: Slim by joining a slimming club; make sure food looks pretty and is served attractively

Flowers, herbs & spices: Bluebell, pink rose, lilac, orchid, violet, hydrangea, daffodil, daisy, foxglove, apple, artichoke, chestnut groundsel, lily, mint, parsley, pennyroyal, potato, walnuts, yarrow

Trees/shrubs: Alder, peach, pear, sycamore

Healing with herbs: Daisy, garden mint

Comfortable surroundings: Librans love pastels in the home. They find pale shades of any colour visually pleasing

Stress areas: Divorce, pregnancy, moving home Attitude to shopping: Balanced, beauty-loving

Objects: Expensive bath oil, paintings, perfume, window garden, sculptures, sports coupe

Party costumes: Bonnie prince charlie, sergeant pepper, rogue

Sports/Hobbies: Collecting objets d'art, cooking, cricket, dancing, decorating, flower arranging, needlework, shopping, socializing, sunbathing

Professions/Trades: Barrister, beautician, designer, diplomat, judge, personnel officer, receptionist, valuer, welfare officer

Countries: Austria, Burma, Canada, Egypt, Japan, Tibet

Cities: Copenhagen, Frankfurt, Lisbon, Vienna

The Archetypal Libran: Eve, who listened to the Voice of Reason (the Serpent) but could do nothing until she had persuaded her mate (Adam) to join her.

Key Quote: "To be or not to be: that is the question" - Shakespeare, Hamlet

Mythology

The constellation of the Scales is thought to take its name from the ancient Babylonians, who believed that the god Zibanitu - the Scales - sat in judgement weighing he souls of the living and the dead. In Greek mythology it is associated with the goddess Athene, who confounded her high-handed and imperious fellow gods by holding a court of justice among mortals.

Description

The basic Libran urge is towards finding balance and harmony with other people and they will often do this at the risk of losing sight of their own needs. A Libran can get caught up in 'people-pleasing' but makes the ideal diplomat, always prepared to negotiate a settlement between warring factions, or to propose a peace treaty to squabbling partners. The delicate features of typical Librans are supposed to endow them with chocolate-box looks. Often, the prominence of Venus - this sign's ruler - in the birth chart can be seen by the presence of soft dimples. But do not be deceived: Librans are skilled at deploying their physical charms to get just whatever they want from whomsoever they please. Libra is a cardinal air sign and Librans are capable of innovative thought and very direct self-expression. However, Libra is also the sign which seeks union and many Librans feel that they can only express themselves through a relationship with another person, or in a joint creative effort.

The sign comes under the gentle guidance of Venus. Librans are in love with love. Loving relationships are the centre of their world and they expend a great deal of energy achieving harmony. For them, romantic partnerships are virtually an art form, but problems arise when an innate inability to make a definite and binding decision about a relationship comes to the fore. On their wedding day, Librans usually manage to make everyone else feel huge, crass and unwashed. Being an air sign, Librans tend to respond to jealousy on a mental level. In a relationship, they will either seek to make their partner jealous by playing them at their own game, or become extra-demanding in a bid to divert attention from their rival. Flirting comes as second nature to Librans, who have Venusian charm oozing from every pore and know instinctively how to use it. For many Librans, however, it is vital that they remain free to pursue their romantic encounters as they see fit, and they may well prefer a succession of flirtatious liaisons to the commitment of a long-term relationship. Libran ladies on the look-out for a lover can be guaranteed to make the most of their natural beauty, while Libran men will always be well groomed and immaculately dressed. People of this sign have a deep dislike of anything that jars the eye, and this applies to themselves as well as to any prospective new companion.

Librans are renowned for being accommodating, and adjust readily to the needs of others, so that they can be delightful, if somewhat passive lovers in this role. However, the true way to the Libran heart is through courtship. A romantic candlelit dinner or a flattering compliment will help no end to thaw their sometimes frosty exterior. Libra is the sign of balance and harmony and Librans are noted for their ability to get along with everyone. Their relationship with their marriage partner is no exception, since Librans almost always make every effort to adjust to what their spouse requires from marriage as this makes them happiest too. Libra is renowned for having difficulty making decisions and for suffering frequent changes of mind. They often vacillate between leaving and staying; between a kindly desire not to hurt their partner and a desperate need to flee from disharmony. They can also easily become torn between loyalty to a spouse and the lure of a new romance.

Although they are normally charming, easy people to be with, the challenge of a Libran rival should not be undervalued. The cardinal quality of the sign, which gives initiative and ambition, combined with the rational objectivity of the air element, means that Librans do enjoy rivalry and can make tough opponents. Libra is one of the most romantic signs and all Librans love to fantasize about finding perfect love. They secretly believe in Prince or Princess charming, someone who combines film-star looks, charm and good manners with undying devotion. If the lover is wealthy as well, so much the better, and many a Libran also dreams of wealth. Libra is the sign of partnership and close one-to-one relationships, and this area is often a major source of stress for Librans. They feel particularly stressed when they do not have a close companion or lover with whom to share their life, or if there is conflict and difficulty in this area.

Harmony is a key word in any Libran relationship. Although they are sometimes known as 'lazy Libra', Librans actually have tremendous drive and energy, which they can harness towards reaching the top. The apparent laziness is mainly attributable to indecision, and Librans certainly have no lack of ability. When they finally make up their minds what to do, they go all out for success. It is undoubtedly love, friendship and close relationships which arouse those born under the sign of the Scales most strongly. This is a sign which passionately wants companionship, both on a personal level and at work. Librans hate being on their own; they do not feel really happy or complete unless they are around other people. It is often Librans' love of beauty which pushes them into positions of power. Sordid conditions are totally unacceptable, and may well stimulate this sometimes lazy sign into action. However, they also need support and encouragement if their efforts are to be sustained. Praise from above makes them feel worthwhile and important.

Librans may be indecisive about practical or long-term issues, but they have little hesitation when it comes to participating in an unusual outing or holiday adventure. Any opportunity to explore and experience new environments and Librans are off. This yearning for novelty also plays a strong part in their social life. Inclined as they are to balance things, many Librans feel especially concerned at the way the delicate balance of nature has been upset by such things as excessive use of pesticides, damage to the ozone layer and unnatural farming methods. All of these issues may stir them to action, and they can make formidable opponents indeed. On the whole, Libran bosses are good to work for, for as well as doing their best to keep everyone happy, they will make sure their working conditions are as pleasant as possible. The fact that there is a strongly flirtatious element to all of their personal dealings only adds to the fun. But before employees take Libra's nods and winks as a come-on, they should remember that they are in the presence of an incorrigible charmer. Libran bosses don't get where they are by succumbing to passing fancies - at least, not unless the scales are tipped in their favour!

As an assertive Cardinal sign, they ought to be more freedom-loving and independent than their reliance on partners makes them appear. Often, their natural energy only asserts itself when the hunt for a partner is on. At such times they may develop a sense of urgency quite out of character with their sign. The Libran love of beauty and harmony often prompts these people to exercise their minds in an appreciative of all matters artistic. There is nothing Librans enjoy more than discussing their latest likes and dislikes with friends, and it is often in situations such as this that their considerable mental powers come into their own. They can best use their potential by bringing others together in a spirit of co-operation. However, this constant striving for harmony may also mean that they fall into the trap of trying to be all things to all people - a tendency which is always there to upset the balance so important to this diplomatic sign.

Libra is one of the most tolerant of signs and will happily adapt to meet other people's demands. But difficulties arise when their talent for pleasing everyone produces compromises that take little account of what they want for themselves, creating reservoirs of resentment which may spill over later on. When they sit down and really use their minds, they can be as decisive as anyone else - especially where long-term interests are at stake. The problem is that in their everyday lives these laid-back people tend to be lazy thinkers, and often go round in circles trying to make decisions about relatively unimportant matters. They generally have two thoughts in a crises: the first is that such things are better faced in company than alone; the second is that the problem must be due to some mismatch or imbalance of forces, and that if the balance can only be restored then all will be well.

The need to get help is easy to understand, and works on the old principle that a problem shared is a problem halved. But the idea of redressing the balance is uniquely Libran: if one person is being unreasonable, then by giving in to their demands, the crises can be averted. This is like putting extra weight on one side of the scales to match the load in the other. A better answer might be to unload the heavy side, but Librans prefer to take the strain themselves rather than appear ungracious to anyone else. Being a cardinal sign, Librans are good at recognizing when problems exist and applying their minds towards finding a solution. Unfortunately, when the time comes to act, they sometimes dither, or back off and change their minds. They could learn alot from the Arian attitude to problem-solving - that is, to act on.

No matter what age they have reached, they all seem to share one particular problem - that of charm. The born diplomats of the zodiac, they always seek to bring peace into their own - and other peoples' - lives. Most of them will happily adjust to meet the needs of others and thus ensure that they live in perpetual harmony. These charming children love to be admired for their grace and beauty, and often excel at pastimes like gymnastics and dancing. However, since they hate even the faintest hint of disharmony in the air, they may need encouraging to stand up for themselves and not give in to the wishes of others simply for the sake of keeping the peace. Growing up is a big issue for everybody, but for them it really makes the headlines.

Their life's ambition is to find themselves a suitable 'other half', and this is where it all begins. Falling in love, though, must be preceded by a conscious effort to draw in as many contenders as possible, and youngsters of this sign soon gain a reputation for being unable to pass a mirror without snatching a glance at themselves. 'Attract and be attractive' is the keynote for them during their formative years, and being cardinal by nature, they lose no time setting about it. In later years they may find themselves rather lonely - especially if they have lost their partner. Yet once they can begin to appreciate the value of their less visible talents - high ideals, diplomacy and a genius for bringing other people together - there is no reason why their lives should not continue to be meaningful. One possibility might be to offer their service to others, perhaps in an advisory capacity. This would not only put their experience of life to good use, but also help them maintain their all-important self-respect. Old age gives Librans the chance to perfect what they have strived for all their lives - harmony and tranquility in their surroundings.

Once inspired, they alone have the ability to settle old family scores and leave the world a happier place. Early life with a Libran brother or sister might well have been a pain! This is the child who always managed to look clean, tidy and beautiful, and who could always find the right words to convince adults how charming they were. The Libran father will do anything for a quiet life, and is usually to be found either playing with his children, or locked away in the study. The Libran mother, whilst not overly demonstrative, is affectionate and gracious with her children, doing everything possible to encourage them to be well-mannered, sociable and outgoing. Librans, in general, like activities that involve cultural or intellectual interests, but their natural sense of balance prevents them from becoming too deeply involved in any subject.

They are usually happiest with a broad sweep of the arts; they like looking round exhibition and art galleries, as well as shopping, eating and socializing. Their ideal car would combine elegance and comfort with more than a hint of romance - the kind of sports coupe that turns heads wherever it goes. Librans also have a fondness for convertibles, since they love to imagine themselves being whisked down country lanes on warm summer evenings with the breeze blowing gently through their hair. High on their list of essential accessories would be an extra-large rear-view mirror - not for checking the road behind, but for making sure they arrived at their destination with not a hair out of place! They have their needs and wants like everyone else, but unlike more self-contained signs, they can have great difficulty expressing them unless they have a partner to bounce off against. Alone, they tend to lose direction - compromising endlessly, then growing resentful because in the anxiety to please, they feel they have been taken for granted.

Whoever credited them with being the diplomats of the zodiac was not being especially flattering. After all, as everyone knows, diplomats are second only to politicians in their reluctance to give straight answers to questions. To them, there is something rather vulgar about pushing oneself forward and competing head-on with other people. Not only does it lead to upset and disharmony - both of which they detest; it also goes against their code of bringing people together in a spirit of co-operation and friendship. They enjoy exercising with other people, as this satisfies their social instincts. So joining a gym or work-out class could be a very helpful move towards greater fitness. If they take part in team sports they generally fit in with the team spirit well, although their performance may become lazy or careless if they lose interest.

Difficulties in close relationships can cause great stress for them, leading to nervous tension, irritability and maybe sexual problems. Exercises that require mental and physical balance - like the graceful martial art of Aikido or the movement meditations of Hatha Yoga or T'ai Chi - will help them achieve the greater self-control they probably need. The inclusion of plenty of colourful, low-calorie ingredients such as fruit and vegetables, to make meals more interesting, helps to keep their morale high. An attractively laid table, with flowers, and even candles, can also make a difference to their enjoyment of a meal - and to the strength of their will to lose weight. They love a classic look made up of carefully chosen and well-matched separates. They insist on the best, natural fabrics and usually choose a mixture of soft, neutral colours and muted pastels; pink and blue being particular favourites. Their sense of style is really let loose in their choice and use of accessories. No matter what they decide to take up, hobbies seldom bring them much fun unless they involve the company of at least one other person.

They are a social sign, and talking about their spare-time pursuits is almost as important as doing them - if only because they love to be appreciated for their talents. It may not always be immediately obvious who the Librans are among the love-struck couples in the snug bar, but a closer look is guaranteed to give the game away. Watch for the person who stares adoringly into their partner's eyes one minute, then breaks into peals of laughter and looks round to see who's looking at them the next. Now check that they are well dressed, charmingly spoken and that their ash-tray is empty. There's your Libran. As expert conversationalists, they just love an opportunity to don elegant attire and charm the opposite sex with their flirtatious chatter. Social graces ooze from every pore of these people and etiquette comes quite naturally to them. They are at their most relaxed and happy at almost any type of party.

The Libran you dismissed as perhaps being rather dull and ordinary in a work context can usually be relied on to surprise you with some strange if not singularly off-beat social activities and interests. If you enjoy a little excitement in your spare time, try to make sure you stick with them - they are always in need of a partner. Their deeply entrenched need for company leads them to eat out frequently - especially when they are forced to live alone. Under such sad domestic circumstances, they wilt, flounder, and find it impossible to buy food. 'Life must have its compensations', they tell themselves; and so, seeking friendship and treats in equal proportion, they sally forth, restaurant guide in hand. Saving calories by having simple meals such as salads, steamed vegetables and fruit (without cream, butter or oily dressings) when they are at home, and then eating as moderately as possible when they are out - feasting on the ambiance and the company rather than the food - is the best way for an overweight Libran to diet.

They are the zodiac's culture vultures, launching themselves into a love of art in a way other signs play sport or pursue their careers. Often their appreciation for beautiful objects finds a practical outlet in the world of interior design, as they are never happier than when discussing their artistic tastes with other people. Because they are fired by such a strong sense of justice, they must avoid getting involved in difficult situations when travelling in countries with different customs. They also need to watch an inclination to over-indulge in rich foreign foods to which they are not accustomed, or give in to their sweet tooth. Love of harmony and a balanced set of scales sum up people born in Libra. Their extravagance is usually taken for granted, particularly where the home is concerned; but few realize how crucially important that sense of balance is to them. They can even become physically ill if the colours in their environment clash. Striking a balance between the needs of their Sun-sign and the more worldly demands of the Nodes can be a delicate operation for Librans. Combining the two sets of principles in harmony is the aim, but it does not always happen automatically, and there is often a need to take a more forceful, direct approach to life.

They have the ability to create their own luck by using their great powers of persuasion: and negotiations are usually done with such tact and diplomacy that some opponents may not realise they are actually being manipulated to pass on suggestions or advice that may be used for their gain or business advancement. They tend to use their diplomatic skills to sweet-talk others into giving them precisely what they want. They can also be extravagant with their cash, spending it on things that give them pleasure. 'I balance' is what they will declare: but it is the bank manager who ends up covering the bills for the lovely objects they enjoy buying. Their love of beautiful surroundings is usually reflected in their personal appearance, which tends to be elegant and tasteful but never showy.

They also like to pamper themselves, and the expensive beauty products in their bathroom cabinet could well figure highly among their list of treasured possessions. Whether in the town or country, their perfect residence has a clear sense of style and is not too cut off from those around it. The outside is immaculate but also harmonious - they would not dream of spoiling the character of the neighbourhood. Light is important to this sign, so windows will be large and plentiful, with excellent views. Inside, each bedroom will have its own en-suite bathroom and fully fitted dressing room - with mirrors at every conceivable angle! There is no getting away fro it - they are moody. When their energy deserts them, their happy-go-lucky frame of mind can easily sink into depression, with inevitable consequences for those around them. As a result, they are best suited to jobs which allow for their mood swings; after all, they always bounce back. Because they are very conscious of other people's needs, they are happiest in working situations which require a balanced viewpoint.

They also work best in partnerships which require a 'give-and-take' attitude, and will often do more than their fair share to avoid unpleasant confrontations or to restore peace in arguments. If they have a marked healing gift, it is usually for easing mental and nervous conditions. So they can make excellent counsellors, if they are able to listen dispassionately and be supportive rather than trying to press someone into making a decision. They should allow their patients to find their own solutions. They swing between two extremes and the are rather unreliable when it comes to secrets. Even though a Libran may well keep your secrets, you cannot always depend on this. They are easily confided in, and this can lead to their giving secrets away. They may occasionally have an ulterior motive in sharing secrets with you. While firmly believing that 'love makes the world go round', they also adhere to the adage that 'love hurts'. Developing self-love, so that relationships are wanted rather than needed, is a positive step towards obtaining the kind of rewarding long-term intimacy which this sign both craves and fears.

Many Librans actively dislike open confrontations. Consequently, they may try to make colleagues or partners laugh or in order to restore harmony. If an argument has already taken place, they prefer to pretend nothing has happened and instead will point out some cartoon in the newspaper or try to find a comedy show on television. They prefer animals with soft, silky fur which are beautiful both to look at and to touch. Size is not particularly important (depending on space available, of course). Distinctive dogs such as an Afghan hound may appeal, as may a poodle or Pekinese. Song-birds are particularly Libran pets and perhaps even more so are white doves. Ever sociable, they enjoy their shopping most if they can do it in the company of one or more friends. They value the opinion of others to help them make up their mind - always a somewhat lengthy process when they are on their own - and love to share a bite to eat as part of the pleasure of a shopping trip.

Compatability

ARIES: You know perfectly how to get round rams when they get out of hand. But has it ever struck you how alike you are deep-down?

TAURUS: You share many common interests, yet you pursue them in very different ways. This could prove intriguing - or exasperating.

GEMINI: Here's someone you can talk to about anything without the fear of being challenged. But this may not be as good as it sounds.

CANCER: You find it hard to understand why crabs are so much at the mercy of their feelings when for you, there is always a rational answer.

LEO: You love Leo's sparkle - and also the way they take up your suggestions on how they can improve their lives.

VIRGO: Here is someone as rational and as fussy as you are, so why are things so difficult? Perhaps too many cooks...

LIBRA: Despite being incredibly nice to one another, you achieve little. The reason? Neither of you is prepared to make a decision.

SCORPIO: An uneasy relationship. You have a habit of saying what the Scorpio feels, but the trouble is Scorpio means it - you don't.

SAGITTARIUS: Plenty of fun, lots to talk about and a never-ending supply of not-too-heavy attention. The perfect combination.

CAPRICORN: You may find the idea of living under a houseful of rules and regulations quite appealing, but remember - they won't be yours.

AQUARIUS: A friendly, easy-going and talkative combination. No jealousy, which suits you. No passion either, which may not.

PISCES: For some inexplicable reason you go out of your way to help keep Pisces on an even keel - and even when it doesn't work you keep on trying.