Capricorn is steadfast, stable, shrewd, resolute and disciplined. It is the most single-minded of all the signs, whose qualities are promoted deliberately, methodically and decisively, with a persistent and intractable spirit of nature. Fecundity, affluence and advancement are the result. It shows great resilience and matchless stamina, has a stark survival reflex, never assumes good fortune and can suffer abnormal adversity. Its potency, staunchness and sheer doggedness predictably lead to mastery, and the prestige of a managerial rank. With great regard for history and convention, it represents orthodox morality, holds a demeanour of gravitas, and wears a mantle of emotional control, psychic resilience and earthy endurance.
It sees life as a serious business that must be negotiated with due diligence. Objectives are managed carefully, with real grit. As servants or as managers, it pushes efficiently against obstacles, makes the most of any talent and potential and sees it as a social duty to achieve goals and challenge others to reach their own level of excellence. With few comforts and resources, goats persist to claim their place in the hierarchy, finding themselves rightfully at the top – highly respected leaders in organizations they once humbly served. A drive for recognition binds them into a system of social control, which they learn to handle with great focus and authority. Respecting structures that have proven viable over time, they often become officers in the chain of command, key wielders of power, able in turn to demand respect from others.
The structure of life is very clear and generally reliable – applying this saturnine wisdom is the foundation of the goat’s power. Since rewards stimulate effort, they are an aspect of the formula of attainment – and so therefore are considered sacred and worthy of celebration. Success follows a formulaic pattern, and to master materiality we need to learn how to master the pattern. First play – through which skills and tips unfold; then learn – in order to complete self-confidence; then intend, with clear focus of a specific well-defined outcome; then expect a result – which finally triggers celebration, the initial purpose of the exercise.
Each of the Earth Signs is rigorously engaged with the physical, and there are deeply hidden reasons for this, which relate to the need for security. In Capricorn’s case, this secure state comes through identifying that they are not needed, and therefore are free to fail without being held responsible for the collapse of society’s structured stability. The irony is very subtle, paradoxical even, since it mostly seems that their abiding motivation is to demonstrate their irreplaceability. Yet this is their existential double-bind – the only way to prove they are not needed is to become apparently indispensable and then be replaced.
Tremendous faith comes from knowing they are the bedrock of society – and, as irrepressible as the rock of the earth, this sign cannot be broken down. It knows how to win and knows how to lose; it does not confuse what appears to be with what is; ego is a tool not a raison d'être; it knows itself to be in this world but not of this world – and finally its reality is universal and cosmic, not subject to the structure it has mastered. Tarot links Capricorn to The Devil, seemingly, but not actually, chained to the earth. People bind themselves to attachments because freedom is frightening and requires too much responsibility. Yet the goat affirms a path of responsible power towards greater cosmic potentiality, overcoming challenges of the base nature and environment, to gain in stature, reach and awareness – soul prizes worth the formidable expenditure of effort.