The South Scale (Zubenelgenubi)

Astronomical designation: Alpha Librae

The South Scale


The South Scale is a sort of companion star to the North Scale (discussed next after Mulu-Izi and Iota Serpentis) and is the alpha star of the constellation Libra, The Balance or Scales. It appears in the sky in the southern Scale, and another name for it is Zubenelgenubi, from the Arabic al-Zuban al-janubiyyah, the Southern Claw. In remote antiquity, before the stars of Libra were fully established, the Babylonian Scorpion figure extended its claws here and was much larger than the more modern constellation Scorpius. By the nineteenth century the South Scale had been given the symbolic name ‘The Insufficient Price’, a complement to ‘The Full Price’ assigned to the North Scale.


Unlike the North Scale, the South Scale is not a lucky star by traditional reckoning. The old attributions are losses, destructiveness, relentlessness, violence and disease. But there are better influences which are usually much more evident. The South Scale gives strategic sense and canniness, and the strong survival skills needed to overcome the obstacles of life. All up, it seems this star is one of the cosmos’s little taskmasters, lobbing challenges and constantly testing how far people have come. As with other challenging stars, you need to manage any eruptions of fear, which would throw you right off balance (bad quip intentional). They flourish best with the South Scale who maintain their poise and adaptability. On a material level, one of the issues with South Scale is what is so often called poverty mentality. Fear of lack can make people behave very unskilfully. Yet it is always worth remembering that ‘poor-me’ South Scale is twinned with ‘lucky-me’ North Scale, and is really just the unredeemed shadow side of the abundance of the other star. The lack here arises ultimately from emotional blockages and fear patterns which get in the way of seeing how or what you can do to get where you want to go. Working on Law of Attraction principles, perhaps coupled with techniques to release emotional blockages like the Emotional Freedom Technique (EFT) or ‘Tapping’, will eventually pay dividends of many kinds. Just as the North Scale doesn’t always promise you unalloyed good, so there are ways to escape from the apparent prison of the South Scale’s poverty. As well as the techniques already suggested, you need to be honest about what you can and cannot do. With this star you may need to learn how to under-promise and over-deliver. You can’t be all things to all people, nor can you do everything in one lifetime, nobody has that much skill, or time. Learn to keep life simple – then you can probably get it balanced, and on various levels prosperous, too!


Fairness, balance and poise are all important with this star. Master of realpolitik Machiavelli had the planet Neptune – which can be very devious when it isn’t very spiritual – aligned here; Conservative British Prime Minister Margaret Thatcher had conservative, stern Saturn. There was no material poverty for steel tycoon Andrew Carnegie with his clever business-oriented Mercury link, but he sought to adjust the scales with immense philanthropic gifts. Marie Antoinette had sometimes extravagant Venus aligned, and learned the hard way not to be frivolous. Rather unpleasant but widely influential occultist, occult author and would-be magus Aleister Crowley had Mercury exactly lined up with the South Scale, and when he finally succeeded in summoning a demonic force was found curled up in a corner, gibbering. He had some serious lessons to learn in balance and the right use of power. On the other hand, much loved reforming Pope John XXIII also had an exact Mercury link. Sustaining this theme of paths to redemption and happiness, spiritual teacher Sri Yukteswar, the guru of Paramahansa Yogananda, had the surrendering South Node of the Moon here.

This work is Copyrighted: © Kidston, Roderick 2016. Text extracts are from The Magic of the Stars: How the Stars of Astrology Enrich Your Life. CreateSpace Independent Publishing Platform. Link to book on Amazon. Note the book does not contain the otherwise unpublished card deck artworks.