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. Libra I find this fascination because libra at the cusp of the 4th and scorio midway. my mom is libra and my dad is scorpio. As you can imagine, manners were very impt to my mother. I consider it one of her greatest legacies to me. For me, my IC represents my private life with friends and family. While the world might see me as a warrior with my aries MC, I actually have a very peacefully loving family life. We treat each other with respect.

  2. Aquariums at home represent!
    To me, it manifests as feeling culture shock in my home town. Also my home is my lab. (Only metaphorically, sadly, I’m not too good at math.)

  3. I have Virgo IC, maybe that’s why I love Virgos :). I did grow up with a bunch of picky persnickety curmudgeons who all had different sets of rules for me to follow and would criticize constantly. My grandmother was basically straight off the boat from Germany and had a very German sensibility about raising kids, which I experienced, and her husband, my grandfather I never met, was a parole officer. The other side of my family were school teachers and principals so I could not escape that type of energy. Growing up, I took it (my experience in my family) to mean that I was just a bad person. Was an only child too, the first and only grandchild on both sides for many years. Did extremely well in school and played sports and had high expectations put on me when I was young. Empty 4th house, mostly good aspects, but, I just realized, square Chiron. Explains a lot. I also was a chubby kid and due to my family making comments ended up being bulimic and anorexic and emaciated underweight from age 11 to 18. Also was a vegetarian for many of the same years. I had to look and be perfect. How very Virgo is that.

    1. I have Pluto conjunct IC in Virgo. I feel like I fell far short of my parents’ expectations. With a corresponding Chiron conjunct my Pisces MC, there was no way I was going to be the focused, ambitious, and accomplished person they hoped I would be. ?

  4. IC in Sag with Mars conjunct, also Cap Sun, North Node, Uranus and Neptune. I was born overseas, and traveled back there a few times growing up. As for the rest, I’m not too sure. I struggle understanding this part of my chart the most.

  5. I have Saturn exactly on my Nadir. I haven’t decided if it’s good or bad. I have a lot of inner strength, but unfortunately it’s because I’ve needed it.

  6. IC/Chiron conjunct, trine Moon. Square Saturn. I do feel this placement and the aspects reflect my inner self and inner needs. I am really sensitive and lately I’ve been feeling like I’m too sensitive. I don’t know what to do about it. Tune out? Turn off? How do you turn your soul off?

  7. I’ve always thought as the IC as the “soul”? Is that what you kind of mean Satori? The moon being the emotional part of you, and the IC being the deepest part of you, or what I’d like to call, your soul? lol IDK just pondering.

  8. Neptune on the IC in Scorpio widely conj Venus. Opposite Jupiter. Yes, people see the buoyant Jupiter on the MC but miss the depth of Neptune/Venus on the IC.

  9. Hi Satori,
    You raised an interesting subject, indirectly with this post, which is the choice of house system. I’ve just started working with the equal house system because it is how my astrology school works (after always relying on Placidus up till then) and I’m blown away by the new insight. I was wondering if you’d write a little something about house systems for us, if I asked really nicely?
    I’ve gone from Venus in Taurus in the 3rd, to Venus in the 4th on the cusp, with the equal house system, which really works for me (as do many other changes).

  10. Hi Satori
    When I started out on my astrology studies over 30 years ago someone told me that my 29 Scorpio IC exactly on the South Node indicated my having been burned as a witch in a previous life. Now I am by nature a sceptic so took this with several buckets of salt. Anyone else out there heard this one?

  11. This is fascinating. The only other useful thing I’ve read about the IC/4th house was Dana Gerhardt. I had to check my chart but got some interesting insight: Aries IC conjunct Chiron, trine mars in Leo (8th) & N.N. in Sag (12th) and opposite Uranus in libra. I had a very hard childhood/adolescence but I am very close to my family. I’m the oldest of 4 sisters & 22 1st cousins and they are my favorite people. I used to think this was mostly to do with a stellium in cancer but it doesn’t feel like cancer/water energy. It feels more like I never outgrew being their leader, protector, confidante. Could be cap asc 😉 -thanks for this.

  12. Thank you for your article, Satori.
    I really needed some information on the nadir. In my chart, I have a stellium of three planets in the third house and another stellium of four planets in the fourth house. Five of these planets are conjunct my nadir. So obviously, I have a pretty packed IC!

  13. Very cool article, I like the way you describe this angle.

    Considering your knowledge about the IC and how it relates to the moon… I’d love to know your opinion about a chart with a Chiron conjunct IC with a 12th house Moon. Just anything that pops out of mind will be highly appreciated. Thanks in advance!

  14. Nadir Sun here!
    I’m a rather reserved person, and it’s unlikely one is ever getting to know me deeply unless I let him or her in myself. I either go to exotic, thrilling places or seclude myself at home if I can’t. I don’t really like to go out unless it’s REALLY worth it. If it’s about seeing the same places I already know then I’ll most likely cave in and read a book or browse the net. The roots of my being are extremely idealistic, peace-loving and concerned with harmony and Balance (Libra).

  15. IC is 2° Sagittarius in 3H in equal houses. I really do desire freedom. And I love to know what’s going on and what makes people tick. Also, I never feel like like I have a true home.

  16. why so many chiron conjunct IC above ? I am looking at two charts with this conjunction right now. One who was sent to boarding school.And my own where my home life was taken away from me when I was 8 years old. I was looking at the post above where someone likened the nadir to the soul. My soul wasnt in my body for years. It was too frightened. Its called disociation.

  17. Hi! So, I’m not sure if my IC is 90 degrees to my ascendant or opposite my MC.(MC is 20* Libra ).
    My ascendant is 18 * SAg, Sun 18* Cancer, the rulers of both at 18* pisces.
    So if 18* pisces is my IC then I’m coming up for a neptune transit hitting a major angle and both my chart and sun ruler!
    Or not,
    which is it?
    I’m thinking the best way to go through this transit- rulers, angles, pisces represented by both neptune and jupiter- by making space for god… any other insights as to what this transit may be about?

  18. I have the Nadir in Scorpio with conjunct Saturn in Scorpio. Saturn conjuncts Pluto in Libra 29*, but Pluto might be considered a little too far in orb to also conjunct the IC, although Pluto amd Saturn work together, as a unit, in my chart, so might as well say they both conjunct my IC.

    Its so true that its almost impossible to put the Nadar into words. Especially with Saturn there…. One thing I’ve observed throughout my life is with Saturn conjunct my IC, my feelings are almost impossible to verbalize. I used to try *overly* hard to verbalize them, especially as an adolescent and throughout most of my 20s, because I felt deeply isolated at the core… I think this might be something common in others as well with saturn conjunct the IC. You know….yearning to be validated, so out of some unconscious insecurity, over compensating with expression which seems forced. Some sort of under-developed, dramatized, even corney at times kind of emotion…

    My Saturn return forced me to realize if *I* understand me, if I stop wishing others would, the empty feeling goes away. I had to lower my expectations of both others and myself. It made me very self-reliant in an emotional sense.

  19. Since Saturn started working it’s way through my 4th, (still there) I’ve started collecting all sorts of moon related things. I’ve become obsessed with little trinkets and tiny heart-shaped boxes…jewelry with hearts or pearls…I wear moon related clothing, like lace and silk, flowers, etc. Feminine stuff… I feel more complete with these items around. I also framed pictures of my grand parents… I framed a picture of my maternal line of 5 generations- me my sis, my mom, my grandmother and great grandmother with my baby niece… Etc…

  20. beautiful writing satori- thank you!

    …how would you view a ic /venus to ascendant /chiron conjunction in synastry?… could it mean a healing relationship?

  21. Is the MC or IC always square the ascendant. Im starting to realize now why I absolutely need to travel to feel at peace in this world (Sag IC) and why sometimes I talk too much and spurt out tons of information at some people (Gemini MC) Reading this is really eye opening. Thanks so much!

  22. This is fascinating, reading everyone’s take on this. Capricorn Nadir with Mercury in 3rd (Sag) conjuncting Nadir at 28 degrees. Mars in 4th (Cap) conjunct Nadir at 3 degrees. Sun in 4th (Cap) at 22 degrees.
    I’ve moved nearly every year since I left my grandparents house (they raised me.) And have lived in over 15 places. Every move was due to either theft/robbery, fear of crime, personal harm, getting away from family invading my space, stalkerish exes, etc.
    I tend to live in my head (Mercury conjunction IC) and nobody is really aware of the mental depth I have (been accused of “sitting on my brains” and people are quite shocked when I whip out the inner “armchair philosopher.” I tend to do a lot of psychological profiling and am eerily spot on nearly every time. I feel other people’s auras/electrical fields and emotions as a very physical thing, to the point I need to back away from them.

    I’m very much a homebody despite all the moving. Hubby is going into real estate (convenient for me, huh?) and we plan to finally buy our first house this coming autumn.

    With Mars in cap conjunct my IC, my energy is low, physically, but it lends great immediate physical gains when I do utilize it. And it gives me a good steady pace with lots of staying power, long after everyone else is exhausted. I have a marked soldier-like gait, full of purpose when I walk, lol. It’s an unconscious thing, but I laugh when I or others notice it.

    My mind is usually racing 24/7 and doesn’t match my physical energy levels at all. And I’m usually swinging from concrete rationale to abstract theories and philosophies on a regular basis.

  23. How would neptune opposite nadir manifest please with north node in 4th in cancer? My soon to be husband has this and his Scorpio moon is conjunct saturn and pluto..
    Thank you

  24. Nadir is not the same as the Imum Coeli.

    Midheaven aka Medium Coeli and Imum Coeli are points that are opposite
    Zenith and Nadir are points that are opposite

    I don’t know why some astrologers refer to the Imum Coeli as Nadir.
    They definitely don’t refer to Midheaven as Zenith.

    Some astrologers point out that the Zenith/Nadir axis is exactly square the Ascendant/Descendant axis.

    Zenith is the point directly above a particular location
    Nadir is the point directly below a particular location

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