Planets in Astrology, Chapter 6. Jupiter, the Higher Mind

“Jupiter et Sémélé”, by Gustave Moureau.

Having rulership over the Higher Mind and the Superconscious Self, Jupiter is the link that bridges the personal (Sun, Mercury, Venus, Mars) and the transpersonal (outer planets) consciousness in Astrology. As a planet, it’s the fifth one from the Sun and the largest by far, a solemn gas giant which completes its orbit every 11.86 years. On a more metaphysical level, Jupiter represents the principle of expansion, naturally operating on a large scale.
As a deity, Jupiter/Zeus has roots in the Indoeuropean background of Greek and Roman civilizations, late Roman Jupiter being the equivalent of the Greek Zeus. Greeks were Indoeuropeans, thus the names and traits of their gods owe to Indoeuropean models. Jupiter/Zeus thus originates as a sky deity (Di̯ēus) in the Indoeuropean world, inherited by the Vedic (Indian) pantheon in guise of Dyauṣpitṛ or Dyaus Pitar.
Zeus/Jupiter played a dominant role in both Greek and Roman pantheon. King of the gods according to the former, he was born from the titan Cronus, who swallowed all of Zeus’ siblings in the attempt of neutralizing the prophecy according to which he was destined to be overcome by his own son. He was providentially saved by his mother Rhea, who gave birth to him on the island of Crete, deceiving Cronus with a stone wrapped up in clothes. This mythological occurrence returns in Jupiter’s astrological characterization as “the Great Benefic”: Jupiter is, in fact, associated with blessings, good fortune, luck and lucky breaks in general.
But, of course, there’s also more than that: Zeus was the archetypal Greek deity, embodiment of all Greek cultural and religious beliefs. In the same way, Astrological Jupiter lords over morality, Religion and Philosophy. In Neoplatonism, Zeus was thought of as Demiurge, the Divine Mind: nowadays, Jupiter is therefore astrologically interpreted as patron of the higher, more refined qualities of human intellect; a planet/principle of broad reach and perspectives.
In the Roman world, Jupiter was the chief deity of state religion throughout the Republican and Imperial eras; he was associated with kingship and sovereignty, and his will was interpreted by a college of sacerdotes known as augurs. Wisdom is, indeed, one of Jupiter’s qualities as an Astrological principle. In Rome, Jupiter was also associated with foreign affairs, which were under his protection. In fact, one of Jupiter’s pathways of expansion takes shape in a literal sense, through physical journeys, and contacts with “Otherness”.
Jupiter in a Chart drops therefore clues about the native’s approach to Faith, growth, optimism, learning, education, wisdom; his or her potential to create abundance on both material and spiritual levels, the quality of his or her moral principles. This planet rules the Truth-seeking sign of Sagittarius and shows how we take in new stimuli and inputs. Storytelling, ideology, Higher Purpose, good will, generosity and sense of humour are also marked by Jupiter in a natal Horoscope. It’s an efficient Astro marker to deduce how and when does the native feel adventurous or compelled to explore and expand. It points towards the ways we can harness our potential for insight and development. From this standpoint, Jupiter can be seen as the embodiment of all the truly constructive and psychologically healthy tendencies that we may, or may not, put to use in order to step ahead on our Life Path. It’s about the individual mind projected onto an outer sphere and ahead of itself, towards self-transcendence. Placement by Sign and House indicate where the potential for all of the above is more likely to be found.
The other side of the coin is represented by overindulgence, blind faith, bigotry, and excess.

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