Is Chiron the key to the soul?

Ever since I first discovered Chiron and started studying this asteroid and minor planet, I became fascinated by its meaning and also that of others, particularly the aspects that it makes to inner planets in the natal chart.

Chiron orbits our solar system somewhere between Uranus and Saturn, and so is believed to take on the energies of both planets. Uranian energy is somewhat ‘electric’, erratic and unpredictable, whereas Saturn is slow and steady, helping us to learn and master of lesson and taking time in the process.

These energies are personified with Chiron by its literally eccentric orbit. Interestingly, Chiron was first given the very temporary title ‘Slow-Moving Object Kowal’,  and that doesn’t quite flow off the tongue! But it gives us an indication of how little the minor planet had moved over the time between one plate in the sky to the next. 

This erratic movement is reflected in the meaning of Chiron astrologically; wounds often happen out of the blue and yet can be very slow, sometimes impossible, to fully heal.

Chiron was discovered on 1 November 1977 by American astronomer Charles Kowal and at the time of discovery it was the most distant known minor planet. It was in the sign of Taurus. Here are some interesting facts about Chiron:

  • It is about 200 km (125 miles) in diameter and travels in an unstable, eccentric orbit that crosses that of Saturn and passes just inside that of Uranus with a period of 50.45 years.
  • In Greek mythology, Chiron was held to be the superlative centaur amongst his brethren since he was called the “wisest and justest of all the centaurs”.
  • Chiron was the most important Centaur in Greek mythology, famous for his teaching ability.

Poignantly, the symbol for the centaur Chiron, ⚷, is a key with the letter K, and I like to think of Chiron as the key to the soul and the psyche through the birth chart.

Chiron is widely recognised within the astrological community as the wounded healer.  ‘Wounded healer’ is a term that was coined by psychologist Carl Jung. The idea states that the therapist would be compelled to treat patients because he or she is “wounded.” Interestingly, research has shown that 73.9% of counsellors and psychotherapists have experienced one or more wounding experiences leading to their career choice.

“There’s a gift in every wound,

A blessing in every crisis,

A light in every darkness,

Love in every emotion,

A silver lining on every cloud,

A lesson in every experience,

And service in every part of creation”

Chiron, channelled by Martin Lass

Chiron can provide perceptive insights into an individual’s natal chart, shining a light on issues that may not be acknowledged or even visible above the surface. Chiron shows where the individual has experienced loss and wounds, emotionally and mentally, that need inner healing work. In healing our own wounds and learning important lessons, we are then able to help to heal others.

So how can you work with the energies of Chiron? Firstly, it’s important to understand the meaning of the placement of Chiron in your chart, both house and sign. Then look at which planets it aspects for signs of friction and support.

The house placement of Chiron in the birth chart can give clues as to how and where any kind of wounding has happened in the subject’s life, with events especially likely during transits where there has been a square or conjunction to the inner natal planets.

Once you understand your wounds clearer, then you can work through the impact of these on your life, accessing a deeper inner wisdom and peace. This process can be supported through counselling, psychotherapy or self-development work, and I have found that astrology is an excellent tool to understand your psyche to a deeper level.

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