SCORPIO - The Scorpion
October 23- November 21
SYMBOL - The Scorpion
ELEMENT - Water
QUALITY - Mutable
RULING HOUSE - Sixth
PLANET - Mars & Pluto
LUCKY COLOUR - Burgundy
LUCKY STONE - Topaz
LUCKY DAY - Tuesday
LUCKY NUMBER - Two
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by Josephine Wall
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|Scorpio is the eighth sign of the
zodiac, and that shouldn't be taken lightly -- nor
should Scorpios! Those born under this sign are dead
serious in their mission to learn about others.
There's no fluff or chatter for Scorpios, either; these
folks will zero in on the essential questions, gleaning
the secrets that lie within. Scorpios concern themselves
with beginnings and endings, and are unafraid of either;
they also travel in a world that is black and white and
has little use for gray.
The curiosity of Scorpios is immeasurable, which may be
why they are such adept investigators. These folks love
to probe and know how to get to the bottom of things.
The fact that they have a keen sense of intuition
The Scorpion symbolizes Scorpio, and that is no
accident. Much like the Scorpion would rather kill
itself than be killed, those born under this sign are in
ultimate control of their destiny.
It is life on the Scorpion's terms, too, since these
folks promote their agenda (they are quite the
executives) and see to it that things go forward. Others
may find this overbearing (it can be) and even
self-destructive, but that's the beauty of the Scorpio:
they have tremendous regenerative powers, much like the
literal Scorpion can lose its tail and promptly grow a
Fearless Scorpios rarely lose; they just keep on going,
since they are stubborn and determined to succeed (this
Scorpio trait is in keeping with the Fixed Quality
assigned to this sign).
Scorpios work as hard as they do so they can someday sit
back and feel satisfied with themselves. These folks are
intense, passionate and filled with desire. They're also
complex and secretive, so don't expect to get much out
of them, lest they become suspicious and exit stage
left. It's best not to bet against Scorpios, either,
since these folks are surprisingly resourceful.
Orion was a son of Hyrieus, in the region of Boeotia. Others
call him a son of the sea god Poseidon and Euryale. He was
worshiped at many places, but particularly at his hometowns of
Hyria, in the territory of Tanagra.
That's boring! Here's the real deal: a Hellenistic poet tells a
different story of Orion's birth. In this particular take, the
gods Zeus, Poseidon and Hermes dropped by to visit the
aforementioned king Hyrieus.
The hospitable king -- even though the gods were well disguised
and the king did not recognize them in their beggars' clothing
-- impressed the three Olympian gods by roasting his best Black
Angus bull for them and most generously opening up his stores of
wine and other scrumptious goodies.
The concept of Xenia, which is
hospitable reception of strangers -- in particular travelers --
was paramount to Zeus and other gods, who often disguised
themselves and visited earth to make sure mortals did not lose
sight of the importance of offering refuge to strange passersby.
The grateful gods offered the king any favor he desired. The
king and his wife were without child, and he sorely longed for
an heir to the throne. King Hyrieus asked the magnanimous gods
for the birth of sons.
The gods took the devoured bull's hide
and ejaculated or urinated into it. Hey, they're gods,
you tell them they shouldn't do that.
They proceeded to bury the bull hide in the earth, then told
king Hyrieus to dig it up ten months later. When he obediently
did, he found Orion; this helps to explain why Orion is
earthborn, albeit a giant, having emanated of divine essence.
Now wasn't that version a little more interesting?
Orion was a very handsome hunter who grew to gigantic size,
towering over all.
Perhaps the king should have taken him out of the bull hide at
nine, not ten, months. That extra time sure boosted his growth!
Orion was said to be the tallest and the most handsome man of
the then known world. He was often seen hunting in the woods and
hills of ancient Greece with his pack of dogs.
His beauty was so vivid that he was called 'the most
handsome of the earthborn'. There are conflicting versions
of his myth; it will be fun to look at them all, and how the
Scorpion eventually felled the big guy.
Let's start with the giant's arrival to the island of Chios,
where he fell in love with the daughter of king Oenopion and the
nymph Helice. The beautiful maiden's name was either Aero or
Merope, depending on the source.
Orion the renowned hunter sought to impress Merope by
clearing the large island from all wild beasts and creatures,
making it safe for the people. He then personally delivered all
the spoils of the chase as presents to his beloved.
In further demonstration of his deep affection Orion then looted
the other inhabitants of Chios to make a dowery for Oenopion's
Orion proposed marriage to the impressed Merope, but her father
kept finding ways to defer the wedding, coming up with one
excuse after another. King Oenopion wanted his girl to marry a
local prince, rather than this oversized handsome stranger.
One sad day Orion got drunk and, in his intoxicated state, he
forced his way into the chamber of the maiden and proceeded to
violate her. King Oenopion was enraged, calling upon Dionysus
for assistance. The god of wine gladly instructed his loyal
Satyrs to throw Orion into a deep sleep.
Taking advantage of the snoozing giant's defenselessness, King
Oenopion proceeded to brutally blind the hunter. An oracle
informed the distraught and sightless Orion that he would
recover his vision, if he travelled towards the east and exposed
his eyeballs to the rays of the rising sun.
Following the sound of a Cyclop's hammer as a directional
beacon, Orion went to the island of Lemnos, where the god of the
forge, Hephaestus, gave him a little one-eyed Cyclop named
Cedalion to act as his 'eyes' and to be his guide. The
little guy perched upon the shoulder of Orion, getting a great
bird's eye view of the surroundings, steering the giant in the
With Cedalion keeping an eye out, they reached the east and
Orion gazed upon the rising sun, restoring his vision as the
oracle had foretold.
Now it was payback time for the oaf who had inflicted such
misery on him!
But when he returned to Chios to exact vengeance he couldn't
locate the king, because his friends had secreted him away
underground, knowing that what was about to happen to him at the
hands of Orion would not be pretty.
Unable to find king Oenopion, Orion proceeded to the large
island of Crete, where he hooked up as a hunter with the
greatest of them all, the goddess of the Hunt, Artemis.
Most sources have Orion walking on water, while some others
indicate he waded through the waters up to his shoulders. Also
some claim that it was the god of healing, Asclepius, who
restored Orion's eyesight.
There are at least four different variants of the handsome
hunter's death, and we will take a brief look at all of them.
That's where the Scorpion comes into the picture.
version holds that Eos, goddess of the Dawn, laid her eyes on
Orion and immediately fell in love with his beauty. She carried
him off to the island of Delos, which made some gods angry.
Artemis allegedly killed him with an arrow there, or on the
island of Ortygia.
are other versions where Artemis killed Orion, either by
accident with her arrows or purposely by producing the Scorpion.
In the second variant, Orion died of the Scorpion's sting.
Although Orion does not defeat the Scorpion in any version,
several variants have it die from its wounds.
According to others Orion was beloved by Artemis, causing her
brother Apollo, god of Light, to became jealous and
indignant at his sister's affection for the good looking,
gigantic earthborn hunter.
Apollo challenged Artemis that she was unable to hit with her
bow and arrow a tiny distant point which he showed to her in the
sea. Well, that was nothing for the goddess of the hunt, who had
Artemis thereupon zeroed in, and easily hit the impossibly
faraway target, which just happened to be the head of Orion, who
had been swimming in the sea.
Nasty, nasty Apollo.
account states that he harbored an improper love for Artemis,
who was a virgin goddess, and that he challenged her to a game
of discus, or even that he violated the maiden Upis, a
Hyperborean virgin nymph in her company of hunters.
Upis was one of Artemis' favorites, a mythical being said to
have reared Artemis. On her account Artemis shot dead Arion, or
sent a monstrous scorpion which chased and killed him.
fourth version states that he boasted that he would conquer
every ferocious animal, and would clear the earth from all wild
beasts. That's some highly pompous declarations, and Gaea,
Mother Earth, was not going to put up with such hubris,
especially when it came to her beloved creatures.
To show who's boss, Gaea sent forth a scorpion by which he was
killed. As soon as the scorpion was released from the breast of
Gaea, it chased after the giant. The pesky critter eventually
caught and stung Orion, and its deadly venom sent him straight
to his death.
That was the end of Orion.
The god of healing Asclepius wanted to resurrect him back to
life, but for this impudence he was slain by Zeus with a flash
In Homer's Odyssey, the great hero Odysseus saw him hunting in
the Underworld with a bronze club, a gigantic slayer of animals.
Fifty sons were attributed to Orion, a standard number in
Poor Mrs. Orion - where did she find time?
Some accounts have the killer scorpion of ordinary size and
hiding under a small stone. After his death, Zeus was asked to
place Orion among the stars; he appears as a giant with a belt,
a sword, a lion's skin and a club.
Zeus consented to the honoring of the famous hunter and, as a
memorial to the hero's death, added the Scorpion to the heavens
as the constellation Scorpio, the eighth sign of the Zodiac.
Others allege that the Scorpion was set up on the sky by Gaia to
mark her victory over the boastful Orion.
Because Orion had cared so much for his hunting dog, Artemis or
Zeus also put up a star for his dog: This is Sirius, the
brightest star in the heavens.
His constellation shows him striding across the heavens
flourishing a gleaming sword on his bejeweled belt. Many of the
stories concerning the constellations of Orion and Scorpio
reflect the annual rising and setting of their constellations,
which appear to pursue each other across the sky.
Thus, every winter Orion hunts in the sky, but every summer he
flees as the constellation of the Scorpion comes.
Only one story involves Scorpio without Orion. Phaeton (the
mortal son of Helios, the Sun God) went to his father, who had
earlier sworn by the River Styx, where divine oaths were
uttered, to give Phaeton anything he should ask for.
Phaeton wanted to drive his father's Sun Chariot for a day.
Helios vehemently tried to dissuade his son, knowing the
inherent dangers, but Phaeton was adamant. However, when the day
arrived, Phaeton panicked and lost control of the divine white
horses that drew the chariot.
First, the Earth grew chill as Phaeton flew too high and
encountered the celestial Scorpion, its deadly sting raised to
strike. Alarmed and terrified, he overcompensated and dipped the
chariot too close to the earth, causing the vegetation to
By accident, Phaeton turned most of Africa into desert and
darkened the skin of the Ethiopian nation until it was black.
Eventually, Zeus reluctantly was forced to intervene by striking
the runaway chariot and Phaeton with a lightning bolt to put an
end to its rampage.
Young Phaeton plunged to his death into the River Eridanos.
I have it on good authority that was a cautionary myth told by
parents to all Grecian youth keen on taking the family chariot
for a spin.
"Remember Phaethon! Home by eleven!"
Let me relate one final story about Orion and the Scorpion. One
day, when Orion was out in the woods, he caught sight of seven
beautiful sisters, the daughters of Titan Atlas and Pleione.
Orion loved them all at first sight and began to chase after
them. The sisters, however, were terrified and cried out
to Zeus to save them. Zeus heard their pleas and helped them by
turning them first into doves, so they could fly away from
Orion, and then into the seven stars which are now
According to myth, Orion was stung by the Scorpion as a
punishment for chasing the Seven Sisters. Zeus decided that the
constellations of Orion and the Pleiades were arranged in the
heavens, so that it seemed that Orion was in constant pursuit of
the seven sisters, without ever becoming successful, just as the
Scorpio seems always to be chasing Orion, without ever touching
And that is how Scorpio the Scorpion joined the honored and
exalted Little Animals in a Circle.