Cusps by Esther V. Leinbach
(Please Note: For further information on the writings of Esther V. Leinbach visit the Pluto's Child Website)

Cusps are the borders between the twelve astrological signs. You are considered to be "on the cusp" if you were born within a day or two of the beginning or end of any sign.


" BULLIES--the trotting cow: The main characteristic of this cuspal creature is the one-pointed charge toward the object of its desire. The word "charge" is especially significant here, as this cusp rules credit cards. Bullies is compatible with itself. They make great lawyers and bank robbers, and are known for their perfected self concern. On the positive side, let's go on to the next cuspoid."


Signs next to each other are the most difficult to blend but also the most rewarding when they can be blended to work together. Aries/Taurus must blend fire and earth. Aries is the most explosive fire sign while Taurus is the most productive earth sign. Aries is Cardinal and must be on the move as a pivotal point for turning in all directions. Taurus is fixed and must be stable. This is a power which is difficult to use effectively. It is like the irresistible force meeting the immovable object. Something's gotta give. Giving is negative unless it is for an investment which Aries prefers not to be tied to. You need to pace yourself, alternating your driving energy with relaxation. This is only the beginning. Ultimately, you will be better off if you learn to work in a more relaxed and easy going manner. You suffer if you burn yourself out and too much relaxation is boredom that your Aries nature is unable to tolerate. The relationship between the rulers Venus & Mars will either help or make it more difficult to blend these two energies to your advantage. It will also make a difference what we are talking about on the cusp. If it is the Sun, it is likely to give Aries more support. If it is the Moon, it may give Taurus more support. In either case, the problem will be to keep the fire from scorching the earth. It will be necessary for this individual to yield the aggressive part of the nature to the stable and fixed side of the nature in such a way that they balance rather than fight against each other. You are likely to be intolerant of others who are unable to keep up with you. Your Aries nature may drive your Taurus nature too far while your Taurus nature may put on the brakes too strongly, limiting your freedom. This may cause you to be restless and stressed out, not being able to really be comfortable in either of the roles you have been assigned until you are able to find the proper balance.


"Geminus--the insurance salesman: This fast talking cuspoid combines the clever double talk of Gemini with the business sense of Taurus. These curious and sometimes psychic people often become political pollstersk and they are the inventors of "no-fault" insurance. Geminus rules junk mail, rotating TV antennas, the game Monopoly and licorice."


If you thought Aries was a problem to Taurus, consider Gemini. Aries may have built a fire under Aries to allow no rest (for the wicked). On this side, how would you like flies, mosquitoes and insects buzzing around as you were trying to get a little rest? Gemini is highly mental but not to be pinned down about anything. Don't ask Gemini what it means. Only, "isn't that interesting. How about this?" Gemini is touch and go, unmindful of whether anyone follows or not. Taurus clips Gemini's wings but it isn't really something Gemini appreciates. Gemini simply cannot sit in any one place long enough to rest. This earth/air combination needs a mediator to translate the values into something that will blend. Anything that has this cusp, people, planets or situations will need help of some kind to use these energies rather that simply be used by them. It's okay to be a scatter brain as you collect bits of information. It isn't of much value if someone or something doesn't relate it to the rest of what goes on in the world. If all you have is just one of these energies, you get along just fine, like living in a one dimensional world where nothing else catches your attention to show you that there is something else out there. Once these two get acquainted enough to see value in these conflicting energies qualities, they can do more working together as long as they don't step on each others toes too hard. Taurus needs what Gemini has, even for what Taurus is most interested in doing. Taurus will provide a green thumb for growing plants especially flowers. Left to its own devices Taurus will just leave them in the garden to bloom, die down and come up again next year. With Gemini to help, Taurus can add design to flower arrangements and horticulture. Taurus needs Gemini for planning even monetary security. Gemini can't just do this on its own. Nor can it be pinned down to a constant routine. If Taurus can allow Gemini to cut loose and have some fun on a regular basis and actually love it for even a short period of time, Gemini can be brought back to settle down to some rather confining work with very clever planning. If you are born on this cusp, you have to find a way to incorporate the nature of Gemini without putting it in a gilded gage and still find a way to feel secure when it is time to leave your comfortable rut and take a vacation not just a siesta.


"CANCIMINI--The crabby twins: I don't mean to imply that these people are not well integrated, but often we will see a Cancimini listening carefully to themselves talking to their other, worried self. They usually have 2 phones and will call themselves, and let it ring without answering. They have diverse attachments, and often collect lots of colorful little things but cannot remember where they are. Rules home parties, gumball machines and plastic coffee stirring sticks."


Effervescent air and water currents are likely to indicate air and water travel which is acceptable to Gemini. However, Cancer is a home body and is not comfortable being carried away, at least not all the time. Cancer is emotional while Gemini is intellectual, that is, as far as bits of information is concerned - information that doesn't have to be explained. Emotions are not logical but very difficult for the logical mind to deal with if it cannot be explained. Gemini represents the twins who may be able to turn in both directions, dealing with emotions on one side and logic on the other but "never the twain shall meet." Only if you can keep the two separated can they be dealt with. Cancer isn't really equipped to live with this two faced stranger. What needs to be explained about emotions? There is always a reason for the way you feel. People who don't understand that are simply insensitive and perhaps uncivilized and cruel. Cancer is very uncomfortable with a stranger in the house, especially an insensitive stranger. With this combination you are likely to grieve in silence. At other times, you may become reckless, throwing caution to the wind and go where "angels fear to tread." Both sides of this combination, unless carefully blended like hollandaise sauce, can be productive of embarrassing discouragement. You long to be social and friendly with everyone and yet too often others fail to understand your contradictory nature. Once you learn to blend these two dichotomies without jumping from one to the other you can become a real genius at making your emotions appear logical and vice-versa. As Spock said on Star Trek "Sometimes it is logical to be emotional."


Tem Tarriktar "CANCEO--the regal beagle: This cusp rules Jell-O(all colors except green which is ruled by Aqueesies), overcooked grains, pampers and elderly dogs. Perfecting techniques of creative withdrawal, these people write books such as: 'The Sentimental Autobiography of a Generous yet Sensitive Opinionated Monarch.' Notable Canceo: Inventor of the King Crab salad."


This water & fire mixture is vapory, productive of steam, emotional and explosive, with potential for a genius imagination when properly controlled. They have a chameleon like attraction with a certain amount of fear, particularly of strangers, which keeps them from impulsive behavior. If these two energies are able to work together they will be able to avoid situations where failure is most certain. Leo wants to be on stage keeping people at a safe distance while Cancer wants only those loyal and close enough to control for security. Leo, the king, must keep some distance and becomes a soft touch when some needy person gets close. This combination can be powerfully resourceful once they are able to blend and take advantage of the strengths to be found here without being overcome by the fear engendered by a desire to do what they least understand. When generosity and protection go their separate ways neither finds the satisfaction they feel safe with. To Cancer, Leo's generosity is a waste if all that is to be retained is applause. Leo has no thought of enlisting those with whom he/she is generous with or encouraging them to be part of the tribe. If Cancer can provide the closeness without putting out the Leo fire to perform and Leo can be charming without being drowned in emotionalism, these two signs are capable of taking you further than one alone could accomplish by itself.


" LEGO--The crazed artisan: These people are obsessed with creativity, productivity and often start castle-cleaning businesses. Lego rules stage-fright, and they are proud in a humble way. They often enthusiastically exclaim, 'How can I help you(meet my needs)?'"


Fire/Earth again. This time harvest time from the earth is just beginning and a hot fire from summer just leaving. Virgo is not quite ready to harvest and Leo is pushing to hold the summer throne as long as possible. Neither of these two are social beings as far as groups are concerned unless Leo has a stage on which to perform. Virgo lacks confidence and must be pulled along. There are some things that are possible to connect with Leo's showmanship and Virgo's mentality. Virgo is best behind the throne if Leo will only take direction. Leo knows how to be dramatic about anything that they understand. Lawyers come to mind. A good trial lawyer must be dramatic. Salesmanship needs a product in which you have confidence, then you can put your Leo part to work with the ability to make the use of the product come to the front. This combination can also be very good in charge of some kind of reformation to which you are committed. These people have to believe in what they are doing for or with a group, then they find their way to the top in a way that is not aggressive but merely convincing because of their own commitment as well as their ability to make the subject exciting as well as logical.


"VIRBRA--the pay scales. Author of 'Analyzing Us', and often says: 'Oh don't you think we can find romantic perfection together despite YOUR faults?' Virbra rules labor unions, labors of love, laboratory cleaning products and precision indecision. It also rules the wax they put on apples to make them look shiny.

Tem Tarriktar

This is probably the most compatible and easy to blend cusp even though there are some very difficult problems with this earth/air combination. It is less at odds than the earth/air of Taurus/Gemini. This Vir/Lib is mutable and cardinal. Both are quite mentally oriented, with a not too difficult ability to blend and broaden the intellectual capacity of each emphasis. The problem comes from Libra's indecisiveness and Virgo's critical mind. Both are looking for a perfection of absolute truth resulting in a dogma which must be very exact. Of course, this is impossible. This combination can drive itself crazy trying to reconcile all the "ifs, ands & buts" exceptions to be found everywhere they look. Unless they find some way to resolve and live with these inconsistencies, they have an itch they can't scratch. Creative artistry is a real possibility if you are able to put it all together. A major problem is never being satisfied with whatever genius you come up with because you can always see flaws that others will miss. You are inclined to destroy what you feel is imperfect. Anything even slightly out of line seems to nag at you to make it straight. These qualities seem to be compounded rather than at odds as is the case with most cusp influences. Nevertheless, especially with help from the rest of the chart, other qualities can be brought to bear which are capable of making this a combination of genius, especially in artistic enterprises but also in projects where precision and compatibility are important to success. The major problem is that you are difficult to satisfy.


"LIBRIUM LEEPIO--the indecisive assassin: These types often get into politics. If you meet a smiling stranger on the streets who asks politely if they may kill you in a charming way, you've fount one. Their motto: '/don't get mad, get balanced, then get even.' Librium Leepio rules sedation, deflation, used car salesmen and practical jokes played by hairdressers."

Tem Tarriktar

Cardinal air and fixed water, fall moving into winter. Most of my references call this an extremist combination. I can't quite see that. Both of these signs are focused on relationships. Scorpio insists on being in charge, making decisions and hardly conscious of even asking what the other party would like. Scorpio thinks it knows. If not, they will research to find out what can be credible. Libra wants someone to make the decisions but isn't attracted to not being asked to discuss the situation, even though no amount of discussion will be enough to be sure. Scorpio is not able to stand the indecision. No matter what Scorpio decides, Libra will be aware of what is wrong with the decision. Those of you having this conflict going on within yourself have a real problem. You do not have the luxury of living with the pros & cons until someone else makes the decision. You feel compelled to make the decision and then you have no one to blame but yourself when the negativities come in. Even if everyone else is happy with whatever you decided, you are still uncomfortable with what you see isn't quite the way you would like it. Both of these signs are mentally oriented. It is the method that seems to be incompatible. Libra wants someone on the other side of the teeter totter to bounce back and forth with. Scorpio wants to research quietly and come up with a decision without discussing it until the mind is made up. "Please don't confuse me with any more facts!" Furthermore, no explanation is necessary, especially if it is subjected to further consideration. If you as an individual are able to use both of these avenues to come to a decision without second guessing yourself all the time, you will have made a better decision. Your main problem will be letting alone the way you put it together. You will need to let go which is actually difficult for both of these signs. Scorpio hangs on because of the fixity which defends whatever it has implemented. Libra has a problem with letting go because of the embarrassment of presenting something that was less than perfect.


THE BOOMERANG ARCHER What goes around comes around. Their motto: "I've discovered the secrets of the Universe but I'm not telling." Scorptarius rules airports, imports, exports, carports, carpools, cartoons, harp tunes, harpoons, balloons and paper shredders.

Tem Tarriktar

Mutable fire and fixed water in most cases dampens the fire of Sagittarius and causes your exuberance of Sagittarius "hail fellow well met," "foot in mouth disease" so well known to Sag, "easy come easy go." Under these circumstances, you would hardly recognize this person as a Sag. There is tremendous depth to this cusp with only a minimum of expression. Strangely enough you need a bridge of communication. Some of you may feel that the silent majority must agree with you but prefer not to talk about it as you do. You need some air to express your fire. In this case, the fixed water is a little disturbed by the Sag desire for open spaces with people. Scorpio will allow freedom if it isn't too unstructured. I suspect that most of you just dream about what you could do if you just had the courage of your convictions. Which is true. If your Sag is strong enough to break through the fixity of Scorpio you could find yourself on an unbeatable team. More planets in Sag than Scorpio could even out this balance to advantage. Part of the problem is getting just the proper amount of stimulation and encouragement from others. Creative gifts, divine humor and sincere faith are possibilities. If you are able to free the Sag need to express itself without pressure from Scorpio to be defensive about what is known but not understood by others. It all depends on how well you are able to deal with those less competent than you. Once you learn to be patient with those much less competent without being judgmental and are able to learn from the least competent, you gain tremendous stature in you environment. Sainthood is a possibility.


"SAGICORNY--the flippant dictator: The Sagicorny climbs the mountain of life, reaches the summit, throws both arms skyward and shouts, 'I"M ON TOP,THEREFORE I'M RIGHT!' This cuspoid combines the desire to see faraway places with the need for power and to be 'on top.' Two famous Sagicornys: Darth Vader and A.J. Reynolds, the human cannonball.

Tem Tarriktar

Once again we are talking about Fire & Earth. This time Mutable & Cardinal. This has the potential for being a paranoid personality with an excruciating headache. Capricorn's cardinal Earth can be insufferably embarrassed by the independent free wheeling of the Sag mutable fire while Sag feels imprisoned by the restrictions felt by Cap limitations which attempts to keep everything well under control and respectable. "Foot in mouth disease" is intolerable to Cap and at least uncomfortable to Sag when there was no intention to hurt anyone. Didn't they want to hear the truth? When this happens it is embarrassing to both signs. Bad enough that Sag has to deal with such slips but much worse with Cap moralizing. It is much more difficult for this uncivilized and insensitive happy-go-lucky spirit to be comfortable when teamed with this formal, status quo, please-the-public taskmaster on guard. It is equally difficult for Cap to stand the embarrassment that Sag on its own could brush off. If someone is offended there are always more people to party with. Not that Sag isn't sorry and even willing to apologize if it doesn't also have to have its nose rubbed in it. If this Siamese conflict is going on in one individual it will be up to that individual to find a way for the fun loving, happy-go-lucky Sag to be civilized without being too imprisoned. The Cap influence will be a lot more sociable and fun also if they learn to take a joke less seriously. Cap can have the ability to diplomatically smooth ruffled feathers and if the embarrassment can be controlled, less will be lost to worry about. Success, fame and honor are possible rewards for smoothing out this conflicting tendency. Each of you have the ability and the obligation only to yourself to find a comfortable balance you can live happily with. It is possible.


"AQUEESIES--the squeegee: In the ozone, pure and simple. Not of the earth. Don't even try to figure them out. Terminally spaced out. This sign rules lost mail, the government bureaucracy, selfless individualism and decentralized fish.

Tem Tarriktar

Cardinal Earth & Fixed Air a water carrier with thunder & lightening. Saturn & Uranus must work together to make this work. At first glance they seem to be a threat to each other with Uranus threatening the structures of Saturn whose rings say "pass not," the walls of civilization, protection from the elements, guidelines and dogmas which have stood the test of time we are supposed to be able to count on. If you happen to be in prison you will be glad to have Uranus find a way out. If you are so fenced in you can't breath Aquarius is a real breath of fresh air. If you go far enough to get lost you will look for something Saturn provides, protection you can lean against, a resting place. When you come home to Capricorn you can expect a very uncomfortable lecture about how foolish you were to run away but you will find enough shelter to rest until you are ready to take off again. As for Saturn & Uranus, they make way for our evolution when the structure no longer fits our increased awareness of something else which just doesn't fit the structure we have become accustomed to. I like the example of the chicken hatching from the egg shell ruled by Saturn. The life of the chicken depends on the shell breaking at just the right time. If it breaks too soon, the chicken will not survive. If it fails to break when the chicken is ready to step out, the chicken would not survive. As soon as the chicken is able to survive outside the shell Saturn takes over the structure and the boundaries which identify the chicken as a chicken. This applies to civilizations as well. Too many times we have allowed the civilization to fail and had to start over. I believe we will be able to survive this transformation this time.

In order for the individual to be comfortable with this cusp they must be able to enjoy the learning process, the journey through life without being thrown off balance by even major changes that are unavoidable. Nothing happens to us that doesn't have some benefit if we could recognize the benefit. You may surprise your acquaintances by being "gung ho" at one minute and turn back at the next. You love your freedom and are willing to make changes but you also recognize a need for security. The better able you are to keep a balance which does not overly limit your freedom and yet maintain your security the better you will be able to live on this edge.


"AQUEESIES--the squeegee: In the ozone, pure and simple. Not of the earth. Don't even try to figure them out. Terminally spaced out. This sign rules lost mail, the government bureaucracy, selfless individualism and decentralized fish."

Tem Tarriktar

Fixed Air & Mutable Water this is perhaps the strangest combination. Both of these signs are unconventional as far as society is concerned. They seem to know things other people don't know. Aquarius desire to know with Pisces intuition could be very helpful. However, they aren't on the same wave length. It takes some objective observation to make this unusual combination fit. Society is no help when it comes to putting it together. Pisces belongs to the mystics while Aquarius belongs to the scientist. Of course, no one fits this pattern exactly. Both must find a part of society in which they feel most comfortable. Those dealing with this cusp of qualities in one chart must find a unique way to blend these two abilities on their own. Most of you will be rather silent about what you are able to recognize since you realize very early that no one else recognizes things as they appear to be to you. If you worry too much about other people, you may put so much pressure on yourself to fit in that you distort the best of what you have. If you are able to deal with the difference you recognize between you and the society in which you find yourself, it is possible for you to develop some real genius qualities. It will be up to you to recognize these differences and not try too hard to get the recognition you would like to have to help you develop your ideas. If you have enough control without looking weird, you will be able to learn something from everyone, even if they understand very little, if anything, about the way you see your world. Psychic phenomena is natural to you. If society laughs at this too early in your life, you will shut it off and deny you ever saw anything. You will learn very soon that others don't see what you see. You will have to decide whether you can find a safe way to be yourself or if it would be safer to try to be more like everyone else. Singers, actors, authors, and that in-between group which cannot be classified are able to do a good job with this cusp.


"PRAAYERIES--the shark: Picture an ostrich running around in circles with his head stuck in the ground. Motto: 'I am everyone, but--ME FIRST!' Rules holier-than-thou preachers. fly-by-night gypsies and root beer fizzies."

Tem Tarriktar

Mutable water and cardinal fire both bless and curse this blend with the need to act on imagination as they touch a fleeting instant of eternity. Yearning for the impossible can lead you to visionary heights or into a mental institution. What you can't see, hear, feel or touch but know is there can be maddening, especially in a society which worships the tangible and denigrates imagination. Until you can prove what you imagine is true, you are a dreamer. Then you are a visionary. Some of what you can imagine drives you to act without waiting for proof. You live with distraction & sweet desire in the midst of a blasé humanity where the omnipotent can disappoint you as well. An active challenge to the unknown can produce some of the most profound results as well as come crazy undeveloped hints of what could be. In order to bridge these conflicting energies, you must calm your impulse to action. "Let's get this show on the road, whether it is ready or not." You must take time, without apology to yourself or others, to calm your impulse and live with excitement without "jumping the gun" from restlessness to be where you can't quite see clearly yet. If anyone ever needed to learn patience it is this combination of pressures. You also have the ability to perform miracles once you have learned to operate these two contrary energies in a way that they work together under your conscious control.

Copyright© 1996-2011, Pluto's Child/Kevin Leinbach

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