Introduction To The Nadir

“Home, home is where you wear your hat. I feel so break up I wanna go home.”
–Lord John Whorfin, Buckaroo Banzai

The nadir, or Imum Coeli (IC), is one of the four angles of the chart, and probably the one least referenced. I tend to think that is because it is so internal and personal that it is the toughest to put into words. As the midheaven is the point of representation of the public part of the chart and the nadir the private, they represent the axis of inner to outer, just as the ascendant/descendant delineates self to other. Aspects to the IC are referenced as aspects to the midheaven (MC). Anything that conjuncts the IC is categorized as an opposition to the MC. The IC is hidden, even in “cookbook” explanations.

The IC angle “hidden” is different from the 12th house hidden. In the 12th house energies are obscured in general, often even from the native. The IC energy is known to the native, only hidden in the fact that it is not obvious.

The IC relates to the fourth house and the moon. Depending on the house system it may be the fourth house cusp. Like the moon it relates to inner needs and the home. How it differs from the moon is in depth. The nadir IS the deepest part of the chart. The moon is more the emotional body; the nadir is the foundation of the entire individual.

If you are familiar with Maslow’s Hierarchy of Needs, the nadir is analogous to the base of Maslow’s pyramid. Very basic needs, first physical, then emotional/psychological, are represented here. While it is often overlooked, in my opinion the IC is the rock on which the natal chart is built. I read where someone likened it to the belly button of the chart. Nadir/Navel, I like that.

Where is your IC and how is it aspected? Do you feel it reflects your inner self, inner needs?


86 thoughts on “Introduction To The Nadir”

  1. do you count the IC as the cusp of the 4th house or as the point opposite the MC (depends on the house system used I guess)?

  2. I usually use equal houses (though I sometimes use placidus or koch) so I see them as inseparable but not necessarily the cusp.

    someone quoted me on a thread (I hadn’t remembered it till they did) about the mc and the tenth house, being like the president and the white house. well here it’s like the archetypal “Mom” and the home. Mom may not always be in the house but it’s still All About Her at home. 😉 or maybe that’s just MY home!

  3. 😀

    my husband and I have our N Nodes in the 4th.

    I have Aries Saturn there – I grew up in a business & there were a lot of old men there.

  4. my south node and neptune are on either side. I’ve officially lived in 38 different homes (not counting my car or sofa-surfing). 🙂

  5. Satori – thank you SO much for this. I have been reading so much lately about how significant the IC is in synastry and compatibility, particularly of a karmic/fated variety. And yet, thousands of words later, I still could not really get what the IC actually signified.

    NOW I know. Thanks to your explanation. This is brilliant; it’s getting printed out right now to go in my dog-eared golden handbook of need-to-know astrology knowledge.

    Thanks again!!!!!

  6. hey, thanks for the inspiration! I’ve almost written it before but it’s hard to pin down. the putting words to the meaning of the nadir is like explaining the tao, “the tao that can be spoken is not the tao.” it feels that internal.

  7. Sag on the cusp of the 4th here…with moon in it…double whammy!!!and you are right about the fact that that part of you is invisible to the people around you…including sometimes your closest friends!!! Most people only see my mars in the 10th (in cancer) and most of the time my moon feels neglected…working very hard on changing that…thanks for this excellent explanation of the Nadir…

  8. thank you! it’s a tough one for me to articulate, all caught up in my neptune/pisces/mercury, so I’m glad to hear it made sense!

  9. Aquarius IC….pluto is not done with me yet. I wish I could figure out what I did to piss him off.

    Never felt close to my family. There was always some kind of criticism which is the fastest way to alienate me.
    Add in me and my mom both have Saturn opposite venus and that pluto crossed my ascendant (thank goodness)when I was young. My mom out of love( over protection) used to abuse (mostly verbal) me (poor sensitive picses moon trine cancer saturn) when I was about maybe 14 or so I had to get very plutonian on her. I just basically laid down the law, if you hit me again it wont be a parent disciplining a child it will be all out WAR and I do not plan to loose. I was very convincing.
    Funny thing is to this day I don’t think she knows what she did to alienate me. I can think of so many embarrassing incidents. (Mom Aries sun and moon)

  10. i have chiron on my taurus ic and uranus on my scorpio mc. love my family and we’re very close even though my childhood wasn’t easy. i’ve traveled far and put a lot of work into my career and in some ways it freed me. but i miss my home a lot too. never more apparent than this weekend when my favorite uncle is sick. i came home to see him but i have to go back soon and it makes me sad. i wish i could stay with him =( sorry got off track there.

  11. I have the nadir at 29 pisces, with both Saturn and Chiron cojunct natally. Of course, Juputer and uranus are both there too right now.. interesting times..

    1. Interesting indeed. That 29 degrees of Pisces is supposed to be a malific place and saturn is just such hard work, Chiron obviously is the ouch area of your chart so altogether you have a very sensitive point here. Like is this area scabbed (saturn) over with some sort of defensive tactic….even drink virtue of its placement in Pisces. Or is it the place where you just cant heal? I had an encounter with this degree two years back and it was the ugliest part of my life but so liberating in that all the unresolved junk came up and I survived it. That your Nadir is there makes me feel like there is a little chrystaline baby forming there that may emerge one day like some sort of unwanted child that turns out to be the saving grace of your life.

  12. I have a Libra IC, by the way – which explains, among many other things, my karmic-feeling connection to my cat! He’s a Libra boy and because I don’t have a spot of Libra anywhere in any placement, I always wondered why the extreme closeness to this little guy. I know he was put here on Earth to be a backbone/foundation for me; he’s 18, which is really old for a cat, and he toughs it out nonetheless because he knows I need him. He really feels like he was sent here for me. Kinda “crazy cat lady” sounding, no doubt, but I just can’t deny it!

  13. Wow once again satori you nailed it and sent me off on a flurry of investigations – thanks for your spot-on insight and concise writing!

    I have IC in Aqua with tightly (2 deg) conjunct Aqua Chiron in 4th H. The first thing I did was to add up all the houses I’ve lived in: 39! I’m one of those who never feel quite ‘at home’ anywhere, though I now live in the place where I was born and (mostly) grew up. I finally understand why.

  14. My lc is 4 leo my south node is 3 leo. My moon at 29 scorp is trine lc but is the orb to far 4 degrees?

    @von Leo around the home is the mama lion holding court in her den.

    That hit me I kinda get it! I am very protective in my home and of my family. Was as a child and am as a mother. I am generally a quiet disiplinarian..(asc gemini) I talk to the kids and tried same with EX. BUT push TO far and BOOM.. where the hell did that come from? Raaarrrr LOL

    I dont change residence well. from birth to age 4 We lived in seattle then renton till graduation/marriage 1 elementary, 1 middle school, 1 highschool. I want to move east over the mountains I LOVE it over there but every part of me says not till kids are grown and in reality I dont want to be that far from my mom and family though that has been changing some.

  15. Aquarius conjunct Jupiter, opposite Uranus, it’s actually one of my favorite placements/aspects in my chart. I’ve moved often as well- in seven different states (2 islands). Thanks Satori for reminding me what an excellent foundation I have!

  16. I always thought my Sun and Merc, were in my 4th house Scorpio, but in the equal house system, they are in the 3rd house, with nothing in the fourth. I, too, lived many different places. Neptune and N. Node about 30 degrees away, in Virgo, don’t know if that explains it.

  17. IC In Saggitarius, no planets nearby (just Pallas).

    Someone remarked when I first came on here that I’m very adventurous for a Cap (esp with all that Earth in my chart) – maybe that’s where my questing dissatisfied restless and somewhat risk-taking nature stems from!

    I think if I’d had a happy childhood, or even if permitted to make a career with horses which is what I yearned as a child to do, I might have ended up a very different person. Result was I rebelled and ran as soon as I was able – 18/19.

  18. IC at 2 degrees Libra with Uranus conjunct it (from the 3rd at 29 Virgo). South node at 22 degrees Libra in the 4th.
    I have Cancer rising.

    Despite the cusp being in Libra, I feel the Uranus strongly. I mostly equate it with Restlessness, being easily bored throughout my life, the internal feeling of being unusual and different growing up. Interests that for the time, place and family were “out there”.

    I felt like an alien. a stranger in a strange land. I would often say “I want to go home” even though I was physically in my birth home/house.
    I didn’t identify with either parent and I always felt like I was born in the wrong country/culture or on the wrong planet.

    In childhood I didn’t live in different places, but the atmosphere was definitely one of “walking on eggshells”–sudden emotional shifts and so forth–so, not an emotionally safe or stable environment.

    I would like to think that uranus conj my IC does not mean that I am personally unstable. 🙂

    I rebelled, I am still a rebel I guess (internally), but rebelling made my north node in Aries harder to manifest. but I also have Saturn in the 10th, plus the laziness of south node in the 4th, so the SN sometimes sort of snapped me back like a rubber band. that is probably why the delay as well. that’s all I can think of right now…..

  19. Neptune Sag. conjunct IC… im never home in home, and i can settle myself home anywhere, without miss my home… funny thing being a crab.

  20. Avatar

    Pisces IC here… I haven’t worked it out yet. It’s very closely trine my Moon though. No planets conjunct my IC or MC.

  21. Scorpio on the IC, with Neptune 5 degrees earlier in the 3rd. My progressed Venus just conjoined my IC in the past few days! Plus my pMercury, pSun and pJupiter are there. So I’ve been very interested in finding out what the IC means. I moved to my current apartment 2 years ago when my pSun exactly conjoined my IC. Wish I had more money to feather my nest now!

  22. 0’Capricorn IC with Sun and SN in 4th. Pluto has been going over it in the last couple of years and the thought occurred to me recently that it’s only now I think my Cap is really being activated. Really starting to explore who and what I am and building a firm foundation after years of being nomadic. Amazing. Thanks Satori!

  23. IC 11 degrees Gemini with moon/mars conjunction opposite Jupiter. Moon trine asc, moon sq venus/pluto, moon sextile merc, sun, uranus. Too complicated for my liking. Lost count of homes. Very close to my mum.

  24. wow. this actually makes it make sense

    sag. conjunct neptune. square pisces mars. see a theme?

    and, yeh, my psychological grounding is built on a spiritual set of stones that are very fluid and very fire….. fluid fire sag always perplexes me :/

    and i tend to keep it to myself, for the most part. it’s a little too out there for the plublic persona (all that hyper rational geminini midheaven….)

  25. Pluto exactly conjunct IC in Virgo — very strong bond with nature, environmentalist. Mars and Uranus also within a few degrees — bunch of mean, power-tripping family members, but we’re all pretty good with details. Moved way too much as a kid. Self-employed now, issues with authority at work. Aspire to be ‘the deep and strong, the straight and true.’ (Dire Straits)

  26. jup conjuncts my IC at 5’aquarius, sat at 29’cap in 3rd not far off either. I assume it has indicated my good fortune in this life is related to philosophy for the inner self (merc in 9th cancer too) plus ethics is a huge issue for me which i assume is the saturn backing up the authenticity of the philophy?

  27. IC is in Gemini (placidus), and since my MC has a bunch of bad aspects (squares, semisquares, etc.,) I guess that means that my IC has those same negative aspects?

  28. also, with Uranus on the IC, I have exclusively been a city dweller. although with Jupiter conj my moon all in Virgo(plus water energy), I would love to live in a place where there is a vista overlooking nature–particuarly the ocean, actually. Couldn’t imagine not living in a city though–although I don’t like the frenetic energy, I require diversity. I once lived in a town abutted by 2 cities, but it was so homogeneous I nearly lost my mind. Mundane. monotonous.

  29. hi amandapm, can i ask you where you’ve been reading up on the significance of ic aspects in synastry? i can’t find anything on the subject! thanks 🙂

    btw brilliant explanation satori 😀

    my ic cusp is in capricorn, widely conjunct my 3rd house sagittarius moon. the only way that i can explain this influence is by saying that i like having a stable base to go home to, otherwise i don’t feel comfortable traveling… also i don’t know whether or not other people see my emotional side; but i also have sun sesquiquadrate moon, so maybe even i don’t see my own emotional side! hmmmm….

  30. My IC is in Virgo 11’21.

    My Moon in Virgo 3rd house is conjunct it. I also have Pluto semisextile Nadir,Venus trine Nadir,Sun Quintile Nadir,Mars Quintile Nadir,Chiron sesquiquadrate Nadir,Uranus sextile Nadir,Neptune square Nadir

    I got all these aspect from

    I seem to express myself and my creativity best in an environment I can feel at home in. If what I consider my home environment isn’t suitable to my personality/personal needs, it effects me in many negative ways.

  31. Mine’s in Taurus in the 3rd, whether I use Placidus or Equal (did I miss something about the house system?). I don’t have anything else in Taurus. My dearest people are all Taureans, they feel like home to me.

  32. Libra 25Degrees. I want everything to be balanced and fair. Actually Saturn transit there made me start to feel better about things.

  33. When I have done my chart it doesn’t show up. My MC is in the 10th which is also conjunct my moon. So I’m guessing that my IC is in the 4th which is also where I have Saturn. My 4th house is Sagittarius. Is the cusp the beginning of the 4th, the middle or the end? I have never identified with my MC or really with my moon which is in Gemini and I am a Virgo. This post has been helpful to me, thanks so much! 🙂

  34. Hey @Satori, did you mean (in post #4), that your SN was beside your IC? If so, this were to be the cause of you moving a lot?

    Because I *almost* have that – I have SN in the 4th.

    I just always thought of this as my soul’s journey having been intimately familiar with family or home issues, and that in this life time I should devote more time and energy to the outer, career stuff (10th).

  35. IC conjunct Ceres and Part of Fortune in Aries. First thing Satori asked me when she did my reading was “Planning on having kids?” After contemplating this, maybe I’m supposed to have kids to get rich, lol.

  36. My IC is in Leo in my third house.

    I don’t know if I feel the Leo or not. I would like to further understand it, because some friends I have loved the best have been Leo’s.

  37. kr, I was just about to post here reading your post. Interesting, since my IC is very close to yours, 19’22 Scorpio. The only real aspects to it are sextiles to Mercury and Moon (my MC trines both of them, forming an unofficial Grand Trine).

  38. I had a reading done a while ago and I was told that my Part of Fortune (happiness of the soul) is conjunct my IC (in the fourth). I don’t know how do interpret this or what it means and I don’t see it when I run my chart.

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