If we’ve read enough sun sign columns, we’re familiar with both the constructive and the dysfunctional expressions of all 12 zodiac signs. We’re also well acquainted with each sign’s reputation when certain behavioral inclinations are concerned. The passionate intensity of Scorpio, the analytic precision of Virgo or the acute intuition of Cancer just to name a few.
So….. what about Sagittarius? You ask….
For whatever reasons, the Archer seems to have gained a reputation among the zodiac as the perpetual bachelor or bachelorette. The sign which prefers to stay free and unencumbered versus preferring a steady, long-term relationship or marriage.
I make the case, however, that there’s much more to this scenario than the ink written on the pages of these sun sign columns can tell us. We must adjust our thinking to a broader level to appreciate not a fragment of, but the entire Sagittarian archetype.
In much of the Astrological literature I come across, when Sagittarius is being analyzed, there seems to be a direct correlation made between the Centaur’s desire and need for freedom and the inability to commit to a long-term partnership.
If we examine Sagittarius on a deeper level, I think we’ll find that the lesser question is : “Why can’t Sagittarians commit?” and the greater question is: “What type of relationship encourages the Archer to explore long range possibilities?”
Most of us learned in “Research Methods 101” that the manner in which a question is asked predetermines the range of possible answers. If the question is: “Why can’t Sagittarians commit?” It automatically excludes the possibility of them being capable of committing to a partnership.
NOTE: This article is not only applicable to those with the Sun placed in Sagittarius, but also those with personal planets (Sun, Moon, Mercury, Venus,Mars) in the sign as well as Sagittarius rising.
Much of what’s written could also apply to those whose chart suggests a strong Jupiterian influence such as Jupiter placed in Sagittarius, in the 1st house, in major aspect to any of the personal planets and the Ascendant.
The Sagittarius Archetype
When analyzing Sagittarius, we must first consider the symbolism. Half Woman/Man and half beast. A Centaur or an Archer pointing its arrow emphatically upward into the vastness of the universe.
This entire picture broadcasts both the need for the arrow of thoughts and ideas to fly free through the open cosmos and the body to remain comfortably rooted in its animal nature. Sagittarius isn’t as much seeking to transcend his or her physicality as they are intent on successfully integrating it into the totality of their being.
The 9th sign of the zodiac seeks to find a deeper meaning in BOTH functions as a vehicle for constructing a personal philosophy. Sagittarius wants to take heed to the words of Paulo Coelho and “learn to recognize omens and follow them.” The Archer possesses an insatiable thirst for life experience and an enthusiasm for following his or her personal legend.
For Sagittarius, where partnerships are concerned, it’s not so much a matter of whether or not they have the ability to commit, but rather WHAT they would potentially be committing TO.
When discussing Sags, Astrologer Steven Forrest once alluded to the concept of love being hard on the freedom that the archer so desperately needs- and it CAN be. However, it doesn’t HAVE to be soul draining.
One of the keys to relationship success for the Centaur is ruthless self-honesty regarding their own relationship needs. Especially when it comes to personal space.
Now, this “space” is not a free pass to go off half cocked and undermine the fundamental trust and integrity on which a solid, healthy relationship is based, but rather the freedom to think big thoughts; to dream about large scale ventures and contemplate life’s enormous questions. After all, this is the way of the Philosophical wiring which comes with the assembly of so many Sags.
If Sag finds the type of partner that understands this system and recognizes the importance of his/her life journey, they’re MORE than willing to commit. You may even catch one of them with bells on!! Astrologer Jeffrey Wolf Green writes the following about Venus in Sagittarius, which could be applied to any personal placement:
” The Venus in Sagittarius person is fundamentally restless, and is committed to the value of personal freedom to pursue any experience they deem necessary in order to discover and actualize themselves. The need for freedom permeates these people , and they generally will not tolerate any condition or constraint that inhibits their independence or freedom.
When such conditions or constraints exist, the Venus in Sagittarius person will progressively feel an inner alienation from those conditions or constraints, and the psychology or alienation becomes a causal factor or determinant in separating, at least inwardly from those conditions or constraints.”
” In their intimate relationships, the Venus in Sagittarius person is forever needing and trying to balance their need for independence within the context of their relationship. Because these people have an almost absolute need for perpetual growth within themselves, they need and desire an intimate other who is also committed to personal growth.
This will then allow for the dynamics within the relationship to be defined by a mutual commitment to growth. in effect, these individuals need to be in a relationship where there’s an ongoing sense of adventure.
The Venus in Sagittarius person will simply experience a deep alienation from their partner when the relationship has degenerated into a stale, static routine. They need a partner who can mirror and reflect their own reality of intellectual and philosophical pondering. A partner with whom they can interact in this way at an equal level.
The Venus in Sagittarius person needs this kind of intellectual or philosophical stimulation and to be periodically challenged by their partner through such types of discussions. When this occurs, they will have a tremendous amount of respect for their partner, and will sustain their enthusiasm for the relationship. When this does not occur, then they lose respect for the partner and become progressively alienated.”
A long time ago, I remember reading an Astrology book that said something to the effect of: ” to attract Sagittarius, you’ll need to act like you overdosed on positive affirmation tapes.” I had to laugh when I read that because it gives form to the potent thrust of Sagittarius’ buoyancy.
THIS is part of the package that Sagittarius is willing to commit to: life-affirming optimism, vitality; a sense of the next physical or intellectual adventure just around the corner:
“By nature, the Venus in Sagittarius person needs levity, humor, lightness and optimism to pervade their intimate relationship. If their with a partner who is constantly too serious or withdrawn, this will also become a causal factor in creating a state of alienation and withdrawl from such a partner.
They will naturally encourage the independent actualization and will develop a deepening respect for their partners who independently actualize their own life purposes. They will not respect a partner who just wants to hang on to them without developing their own identity or life purpose, or a partner who attempts to restrict their need for necessary freedom and independence.”
The Other Side of The Game
Since we’ve hopefully come to the conclusion that Sagittarius, like every other sign of the zodiac, is capable of fulfilling, long-term commitment, now it’s time to discuss what can potentially hold the Centaur back, where the Archer’s arrow misfires.
Polarized and Dogmatic Thinking
One of the dysfunctional expressions of Sagittarius energy is to listen and hear only through the filter of their own beliefs. When operating unproductively, there’s a tendency to to create a black and white scenario surrounding relationships. So, Sags feel like they’re either free as a bird floating in the crisp summer air or hopelessly bound to the ole ball and chain.
What the Archer needs to realize is that relationships require mutual sacrifice.
The Centaur can easily sabotage the ideal partnership he/she is seeking to create through a refusal to, as Paulo Coelho says: “to accept love as a stimulus.” The immature and underdeveloped Sagittarius sees love as a THREAT to his/her freedom; as something that’s going to deduct from them rather than add breadth and richness to their spectrum of life. Whereas the more mature version of the Archer, who has learned much from experience employs his/her openness as a means to grasp the supports that are being offered:
“If he has the courage to unearth his dreams, he then faces a second obstacle: love. He now knows what he desires to do, but he thinks he will harm those around him if he gives everything up to follow his dreams.
He does not understand that love is an additional impulse, not something which hinders one from going forward. he does not understand that those who truly wish him well are longing for his happiness and are ready to accompany him on his adventure.”
The Grass is Always Greener/Overly Futuristic Reverend “Do Good” Syndrome
“But….If I decide on THIS, what if something “better” comes along?”
I wouldn’t be surprised if this question hasn’t touched the brain waves of almost every Sagittarius infused individual. However, a potentially better question which garners consideration is:
“What are YOU doing in the HERE and NOW to make your CURRENT situation better?” It’s a classic Sagittarian pitfall to be so captivated by future possibilities that they’re tripping themselves up in the moment:
“Sagittarius is the sign most likely to be oblivious to the realities right in front of them that are obvious to everyone else because they are so focused on the distant goal. Since the road to hell is paved with good intentions, Sagittarius people need to be sure that their goals and ideals are grounded in what is truly possible.
They DO need a large guiding vision to motivate them in life, but they also need times of self-examination to assess whether they are themselves living up to their ideals. They like to preach to others (usually “helpfully” in their view), but if something doesn’t work out, well… that isn’t their problem. Sagittarius people rather dislike the heaviness of daily “reality” and personal or emotional problems.”
Sagittarius: here’s the bottom line. You’re natural, healthy idealism need not take a “hit” just because you’ve made the mature choice to temper it with a much needed dose of grounding and common sense. You must be painfully honest with yourself in regard to your vision for a partnership, as to not mislead others who may not want or need such and arrangement. What you choose to commit to is totally yours, but it’s important for you to know the “raw material” you’re working with in your psyche.
When it’s all said and done, it’s up to you to create a situation which honors your need(s) for independence, intellectual stimulation, levity and personal growth. While simultaneously accepting love as a stimulus and support. Recognizing a good thing when you see it and creating room for your partnership to play an integral role on your quest to follow your personal legend.
References: Person-to-Person Astrology: Energy Factors in Love, Sex & Compatibility by Stephen Arroyo, Pluto: Volume II : The Soul’s Evolution Through Relationships by Jeffrey Wolf Green, Paulo Coelho’s “Talks With My Master” (1982-1990).