In astrology and tarot, the earth element covers all of the material things in our life. Our body, the food we eat, our possessions and money. What is our disposition towards earthy matters? Are we indulgent (Taurus), discerning (Virgo) or ambitious (Capricorn)? How strong our desires are for the material world can be determined by the amount earth in our charts and coin/pentacles in tarot.
A person with too much earth may be too practical in their lives, eschewing spiritual, emotional, or intellectual pursuits in favor of material gain. A person with too little earth can be frivolous, slovenly, and undependable. As always, balance is the key to a satisfying, fruitful and meaningful life.
If we get too involved or concerned with the earthy things, it can harden us or make us greedy. The saying “Money is the root of all evil” pertains to the notion that too much earth emphasis can be detrimental to life. People kill or die every day over money.
The main problem is that earth unlike the other three elements (air, water, and fire) is worshiped in modern society. People who become rich are often looked up to, even idolized.
In popular culture there are many forms of entertainment that are based upon the earth desires. Shows like The Price is Right, Jeopardy, Who Wants to Be a Millionaire where money and prizes drive people to perform. Numerous songs like the 80s hit song by Madonna, Material Girl unabashedly glamorizes material gain. Earth is serious business and our earthy bodies depend upon it. How much is enough?
Aesop’s fable about the Goose with the Golden Eggs illustrates the perils of greed. A man has a goose that each day lays a solid gold egg. The man gets greedy and decides that waiting for one egg each day takes too long, he wants them all at once. So he cuts open the goose, instantly killing it, to get all of the eggs, only to find nothing. He wasn’t satisfied with what he had and due to greed, he is left with nothing.
People with an emphasis of earth in their charts are driven to achieve success. Words that describe an earthy person are hardworking, dependable, tough, persistent, and sometimes ruthless. Earthy people must have financial security. It can be deeply upsetting for an earth dominant person to not have enough money to fulfill their needs. They can put their personal ideals, beliefs and emotions aside in order to get the job done and support themselves.
We are all made up of earth and therefore all require to have our physical needs met. How much is enough and how far are we willing to go to get what we need? These are the questions that differentiate between those who have earth emphasized in their chart and who don’t.
When we think of earth, we may visualize cold, hard, solid things. However in Buddhism and the Law of Attraction, earth is considered energy. In Buddhism, this material world is always changing, nothing is permanent. It is called samsara and one day we will all wake up from this bad dream and it will be gone. The Law of Attraction emphasizes that we can attract money and other earthly things by being grateful for what we have, fulfilled and satisfied.
In Greek mythology, King Midas is given a wish by the god Dionysus. Midas wished that everything he touched turn to gold. King Midas was given his wish and was ecstatic with the results at first. Then he realized that he could not eat or drink as his food turned to gold before he could consume them. The final straw was when he unwittingly turned his young daughter into gold after he grasped her hand to show her his new gift. Fortunately, Dionysus allowed Midas to wear away his “gift” by washing it off in the Pactolus river.
A modern day Midas was in the news not long ago, with the name Madoff. For many years he seemed to achieve astounding financial success and had many prominent clients. In the end, his life, family and reputation were destroyed by greed.
We all must contend with the earth element on a daily basis. When we deal with food, work or creating anything, we must stop and ask ourselves, it is too little, too much or just enough? How well the earth element is integrated into the natal chart determines how we balance the material things in our lives.