San Francisco’s Astrology Chart & What it Says About You
BY REBECCA M. FARRAR
When I first moved to San Francisco, a homeless man on the bus told me everyone who resides here was once a part of Atlantis. At the time it was a stretch for me to imagine all of us existing in a now mythical underwater colony, but years later I seem to prefer leaning more towards esoteric explanations of this strange and magical city called San Francisco including astrology. It seems 13 years later I’m still trying to understand how this strange city changed me from a serious PR person to a full-time astrologer.
While mainstream astrology focuses on the birth charts of people as a way of understanding personality traits or patterns; cities, states, and countries also have charts that reflect aspects of their identity. And to be expected, San Francisco has a very interesting–a polite word for awkward–natal chart, which may or may not explain why any of us live here…or in some cases, couldn’t wait to leave.
San Francisco’s Natal Chart
For those unfamiliar with an astrology chart, aka birth chart or natal chart, it’s essentially a planetary snapshot of the moment you were born. The same exists for the moment a city becomes recognized as a city…like a birthday. Looking at the birth charts of cities or countries can be another way to understand why some of us feel pulled–or repelled–to certain places. You could compare your natal chart to the chart of a location and interpret it similar to a romantic compatibility comparison as a way to understand how you might relate to a city or country. However, I prefer a different approach, something more akin to some sort of locational resonance.
That being said, I want to name that several astrological techniques exist for working with places, which focuses on helping people figure out best places to live or work based on their chart. The most popular is called astrocartography, or astromapping. This approach, developed by an astrologer who lived in San Francisco, combines the degrees of the zodiac with the latitude and longitude lines of the Earth to examine planetary influences in different places. While astrocartography can be incredibly useful, it certainly isn’t the whole picture and I encourage clients not to take it too seriously.
After being an astrologer in the Bay Area for more than a decade, I’ve noticed that the astrology charts of the people who live here have similar patterns and planetary combinations to the chart of San Francisco. This way of thinking helps me make sense of the personality of this city and why it may feel more “familiar” to some of us. It’s as if we see parts of ourselves mirrored in the places we live.
And during a time with many people coming and leaving the Bay Area, I’ve never felt more certain this is where I’m meant to be…and it’s the chart of our fair Golden City that confirms it for me. Happy birthday to the City of San Francisco which became an official incorporated city on April 15, 1850.
Looking at a personal astrology chart the various parts or “big three” of the chart would be the Sun, Moon, and rising describing different layers of someone’s personality. The same would apply to a city or country chart with a bit of a different interpretation to account for it not being an actual human. To keep things more simple I’m focusing on the Sun and Moon and the planets and asteroids in relation to them–called aspects. The lineage of astrology I practice called archetypal astrology highlights these connections between the Sun and Moon to other planetary bodies rather than the zodiac signs or houses. And with this lens, San Francisco’s chart certainly has a lot going on, just like the people who live here.
In describing San Francisco’s chart, you don’t necessarily need to believe in astrology or even know your own natal chart to notice what resonates with you about this city. You can also just be curious about which part of the city’s personality you enjoy basking in. Or better yet it may just affirm that you did indeed move here because you are from Atlantis…
Below is a rundown of what stands out to me about San Francisco’s astrology chart:
When San Francisco became a city the Sun was moving through the tropical zodiac sign of Aries. The Sun in a person’s chart represents what they shine into the world or what lights them up, something similar could be said about the Sun sign for a location. Aries energies represent what motivates a place or what people notice at first glance, and is the sign known for ambition and the hustle. People in SF seem constantly on the move, starting something new or having a hard time sitting still. Sounds familiar for a city of entrepreneurs and those who love initiating and staying busy. Though that isn’t always the case, hence the sitting around Dolores Park, which is another part of the chart. 😉
Sun next to Uranus
And then things get interesting as very close to the Sun sits Uranus, a planet related to creativity, quirkiness, and restlessness. The transience of this city and its people could be the Uranus influence and the need for change. Burning Man beginning here would be an example of this planet as well as the non-traditional and free-thinking mentality that strives to be beyond the normal paradigm. I’ve seen the same combination of Sun and Uranus together in the charts of many, if not majority, of clients who live here as well. Additionally, this planet connects us to the future, a strong identity aspect of SF…not just what’s new and next, but the trends that we see throughout the world often begin here. And I believe we have Uranus to thank.
Sun next to Pluto
Next to Uranus and the Sun sits the planet/not a planet, Pluto. And Pluto reveals itself in the intensity of this place. Pluto is power, and the things that make us uncomfortable, in San Francisco you can’t hide from discomfort. I associate it with actual defecation on the sidewalks and poverty as a display of who has power and who doesn’t. It’s a daily confrontation with the unpretty and I feel grateful that we can’t avoid seeing the pain or the discomfort of others here. But Pluto also expresses a strong sexual component, which I associate with groups such as OneTaste or the polyamory community.
Sun next to Mercury
On the other side of the Sun lies Mercury. A planet associated with intellect and planning, which makes sense given San Francisco is one of the most well-educated cities in the world. Mercury also represents perception such as speaking and writing. When I think of SF its famous bookstores such as City Lights and the history of authors who move through this city. The more difficult side could be a city of know-it-alls, which I know I am one of and have only become more so since living here.
If the Sun of a chart reveals what we show others, the Moon tends to be behind the scenes. It’s an emotional process, in the case of a city it feels connected to the underlying culture of the people who reside there and what feelings it may evoke. The Gemini Moon suggests a strong pull towards learning and education, similar to Mercury, but also a deeper curiosity and chattiness. I’ve never talked to so many strangers living in San Francisco, though that could be the Gemini part of my own chart talking.;) Emotional inquisitiveness can also be another expression of Gemini, and I attribute the number of therapists and mental health professionals in SF to this part of the chart. Another interpretation could be related to the landscape, both emotional and physical, that is very up and down via hills and also the general emotional rollercoaster that it feels like living here.
Moon across from Chiron
Across from the Moon is Chiron, a meteor/asteroid hybrid related to healing and the healing arts, which we certainly have an abundance of. I don’t know about you, but I’ve never lived anywhere that reflects back to me the places of mine with insecurity or that need tending as SF. Chiron asks us to go deeper and reveals the not-so-pretty places we confront over and over again as our major life lessons. This city can feel both wounding and healing at the same time. Showing us the places that need attention and asking us to keep pursuing more self-awareness.
Moon in tension with Neptune
This combination in a personal chart is dreamy and a bit disassociated, kinda like San Francisco. The planet Neptune craves music, film, and flow. Going to see a movie at the Roxie or attending yet another film festival has always been a favorite pastime of mine here. We’ve got abundant live music and ample places to just enjoy lying around such as Dolores Park, or any park for that matter. Shadow sides of Neptune include addictions/alcoholism or feeling a bit lost at sea or foggy. Karl the Fog to me is perhaps the most visible representation of this part of the chart, adding to the mystical feeling, but also sometimes confusing things.
Moon in tension with Jupiter
The Gemini moon also creates an angle of tension with the planet Jupiter. While often associated with joy and extravagance. Though I see its shadow explicitly in the hoarding of wealth and the neighborhood with “Billionaire’s Row.” We may have a lot of wealth in San Francisco, but with the abundance also comes self-indulgence and sometimes arrogance. And also snobbery, and I’m the first to admit I see it in myself. This planetary combination also brings lots of fun and adventure. From derby races to interactive art exhibits and beyond, there’s rarely a dull moment in SF, even during a pandemic.
Whether your connection to San Francisco is the entrepreneurial energy of the Aries Sun, the curiosity of the Gemini Moon, the quirkiness of Uranus, or the dreaminess of Neptune, this city has so many different aspects of soul to be seen and experienced. Perhaps you live here because you see yourself reflected in the astrology chart of San Francisco or maybe it doesn’t matter at all why it feels like home.