How Progressions and Decans are Related

A progressed chart is an extension of the birth chart. It’s how we have progressed our birth charts. The birth chart is an exact snap shot of the sky at the time of your birth, but you have grown and changed since then. A progressed chart is supposed to help reflect that change.

To calculate a progressed chart you add one day for each year you have been alive to your birthdate and time. For example, I’m twenty-one, so I would add twenty one days to my birthday of February 23, 1995. This would give me March 16, 1995. Because I’m not exactly twenty one, but rather twenty one and some change, the time for the chart will change. Rather than calculating that on your own though, you can let do it for you. Under free horoscope>extended chart selection and where it says please select a chart type you can select either “natal and progressed chart” or “progressed chart”. A natal and progressed chart will show the progressed planets on the outside of your birth chart, but not necessarily show the houses of your progressed chart. The progressed chart shows the houses, but not in comparison to the birth chart. Below, I show my birth chart and natal chart independently.

If you’ll notice, my progressed Mercury is in Pisces while my birth chart has an Aquarius Mercury. Does this mean I no longer have an Aquarius Mercury? Not at all. I still largely identify and love my Aquarius Mercury placement, but as I’ve gotten older it has evolved to have a more Pisces energy.

What exactly does this mean?

Aquarius is typically very humanitarian oriented. It is very logical and pragmatic. It’s innovative and forward thinking. On the down side, it can seem a little weird or rebellious. It can also seem a little detached. It approaches problems of society in an intelligent manner, often times putting emotions aside.

Pisces tends to be much more sympathetic. Pisces encourages a soul level understanding of others. It also encourages us to take plenty of alone time to really connect with our own soul.

When you have an Aquarius Mercury that progresses into Pisces, you have a mind that while primarily focuses on solving societies problems in a new and unique way, also has developed a sense of human understanding. It suggests a deeper level of compassion being developed with age. That’s not to say I wasn’t compassionate before my Mercury progressed, just that my mind itself tended to be more emotionally detached in regards to people’s issues.

Now, the easiest planet to estimate progressions with is the Sun. The Sun moves about one degree each day. One year is equal to one progressed day, so your Sun sign moves on degree each year.

There is 30 degrees in each sign, so assuming you were born at 0 degrees of a Sun sign, you would progress into the next sign at age 30. If you weren’t born at 0 degrees though, subtract your degree from 30, and that’s about what age you will be when your Sun progresses into the next sign.

I was born at 4 degrees Pisces. 30-4=26. When I’m twenty six, my Pisces ego and heart expression will take on a more Aries air. This will make me much more assertive and driven. I may feel much more independent in my expression of my Sun. There will be a lot more passion in actually doing. I will still be a sensitive, empathetic, and soul focused Pisces, but I’ll also have a much more driven energy.

Now, what happens if you are born at a late degree in your Sun sign? What if you were born at 27 degrees Pisces instead of 4? 30-27 is 3, so you would start acting more like an Aries at 3, rather than 24.

This can change how much Pisces shows through your Sun expression. For me, I’ll have 24 years of pure Pisces expression before I start taking on more Aries directed lessons. For someone who progressed into Aries at age 3, they will only have three years in pure Pisces before they start taking on Aries lessons.

This can create someone who while inherently sensitive and empathetic, is also very largely assertive and independent. Often times I see this in Pisces men who were very pressured to man up. They felt like they had to take on that Aries identity at a young age. Their Aries energy can act like a shield against the expectations of others, but if they don’t also take care to look after Pisces ego needs, they can get too aggressive. It’s important to find balance.

We tend to go through a couple of signs in our life time, but we won’t go through all of them. Once you have found the age in which your Sun first progresses into the next sign, you can add 30 years to find when your Sun progresses into the next sign. For me, when I’m 56 (26+30) I’ll take on a Taurus energy. Rather than being very independent and energetic in my Pisces energy with a progressed Aries Sun, I will be much more settled, choosing a more stable and grounded life. Add 30 more years, and I progress into Gemini at 86. This will make me much more mentally active, perhaps choosing to interact with the community as much as I can, but at the same time still retaining my base line Pisces energy.

If you don’t know the order of the zodiac yet, it goes:

  • Aries
  • Taurus
  • Gemini
  • Cancer
  • Leo
  • Virgo
  • Libra
  • Scorpio
  • Sagittarius
  • Capricorn
  • Aquarius
  • Pisces

If you find yourself at the end of the list in Pisces, just cycle back up to Aries like I did in my explanation.

If you aren’t really sure what it means to be a progressed sign when your Sun sign is something else, that’s okay. Just take what you know about the progressed sign and see if you can apply it to what you already know about your Sun sign. Just mess around with it and see if you can find something to relate to. Do you see a switch from masculine to feminine energy? Can you tell the difference in elemental energy, how does going from water to fire effect you, or from earth to air? How does the change in modality play in, how does it affect you going from fixed to mutable? You can also google more information on progressed signs if you are interested, but I find it’s best to try to work with what you already know first and then dig deeper.

What exactly does this have to do with decans? And what exactly is a decan?

As I mentioned earlier, each sign has 30 degrees. You can divide those 30 degrees into three decans, each being 10 degree’s long (deca = ten). 0-9 degrees is the first decan, 10-19 degrees is the second decan, and 20-29 degrees is the last decan.

I’m a first decan Pisces because my Sun sits at 4 degrees Pisces.

Each sign has a planetary ruler. If you don’t know what they are off the top of your head, that’s okay, I listed them here:

  • Aries – Mars
  • Taurus – Venus
  • Gemini – Mercury
  • Cancer – Moon
  • Leo – Sun
  • Virgo – Mercury
  • Libra – Venus
  • Scorpio – Pluto
  • Sagittarius – Jupiter
  • Capricorn – Saturn
  • Aquarius – Uranus
  • Pisces – Neptune

Now, whatever sign you are, that planet is your planetary ruler. My planetary ruler is Neptune, because I’m a Pisces. If you a Taurus or Libra, your planetary ruler is going to be Libra. If you are a Scorpio, it’ll be Pluto.

Each decan also has a planetary sub ruler. If you are in the first decan, your sub ruler will be the same as your sign ruler, which I know sounds kind of lame, but it means that you express your sign energy in a very pure way. As a first decan Pisces, I express a lot of Neptune energy in a very direct way.

If you are in the second decan, your sub ruler will be the planet of the next sign in your element. The elemental groups are:


  • Aries
  • Leo
  • Sagittarius


  • Taurus
  • Virgo
  • Capricorn


  • Gemini
  • Libra
  • Aquarius


  • Cancer
  • Scorpio
  • Pisces

To continue the Pisces example, the next water sign after Pisces is Cancer. As you can see, just like with progressions, if you find yourself at the end of the list of signs, just cycle back up.

The planetary ruler of Cancer is the Moon, so second decan Pisces are ruled by Neptune and Cancer.

What does this mean?

These Pisces tend to be a bit more private with their sensitivity, maybe a bit more in tuned with feminine energy. The moon represents the mother, so these Pisces may be more sensitive towards their relationship with their mother. They tend to let your emotions guide them, and they may be very intuited with others emotional needs.

The third decan is ruled by the last elemental sign after your sun sign. For Pisces this is Scorpio. Scorpio is ruled by Pluto, so a third decan Pisces will be ruled by both Pluto and Neptune.

What does this mean?

These Pisces may be a bit heavily guarded. They tend to be extremely sensitive, but are very good at hiding it. They may be a highly intense person and tend to feel things powerfully. Pluto has some elements of darkness, so they may be in tune with these energies in others.

In case you don’t want to do the work yourself, the decan rulers for each sign are:


  • 1st: Mars
  • 2nd: Sun
  • 3rd: Jupiter


  • 1st: Venus
  • 2nd: Mercury
  • 3rd: Saturn


  • 1st: Mercury
  • 2nd: Venus
  • 3rd: Uranus


  • 1st: Moon
  • 2nd: Pluto
  • 3rd: Neptune


  • 1st: Sun
  • 2nd: Jupiter
  • 3rd: Mars


  • 1st: Mercury
  • 2nd: Saturn
  • 3rd: Venus


  • 1st: Venus
  • 2nd: Uranus
  • 3rd: Mercury


  • 1st: Pluto
  • 2nd: Neptune
  • 3rd: Moon


  • 1st: Jupiter
  • 2nd: Mars
  • 3rd: Sun


  • 1st: Saturn
  • 2nd: Venus
  • 3rd: Mercury


  • 1st: Uranus
  • 2nd: Mercury
  • 3rd: Venus


  • 1st: Neptune
  • 2nd: Moon
  • 3rd: Pluto

Which decan are you in? What do you know about that sign and planet that you could apply to your understanding of your Sun sign? If you don’t know much, that’s okay. I talk about the planets here if you are interested in what I have to say about them, but google is also a great tool as well.

Now, how exactly do decans and progressions work together?

A first decan Pisces will progress to Aries between age 20 and 30. They are ruled by Neptune and are known for expressing very stereotypical Pisces energy. They tend to be very intuitive, dreamy, and sensitive. They have little boundaries naturally in place and probably spend more time alone defining what boundaries they do have.

They will also express a pure Pisces Sun until late in life, so they have little development actually incorporating Aries energy. Aries energy can be like a shield for Pisces, making them much more forceful and masculine, but if a Pisces spends at least twenty years before taping into this energy, they will be much more feminine in nature.

A second decan Pisces will progress to Aries between age 10 and 20. They are ruled by Neptune and the Moon. They tend to be more emotionally sensitive and very private. Family may be very important, but they also tend to have a shell of sorts to protect them from those they don’t trust. This can be different from a first decan Pisces who doesn’t have much of a wall at all. These decans will still have a dissolution of boundaries, but they will also have an easier time defending them in a more direct way.

They will express Pisces energy until teenage years, and then they will take on Aries energy. This means that while they tend to be very emotionally soft and sensitive as a child, they can grow into someone who can be a little bit more defensive. Their Aries energy could have been battle armor for middle school or high school, which can be tough on a sensitive fish.

A third decan Pisces will progress to Aries between age 0 and 10. They are ruled by Pluto and may be more inclined to have larger walls up than a second decan Pisces. Pluto is known to bring themes of abuse, and while that isn’t always the case, it is possible. There can be a deeper need to control out of fear of being hurt. There is also a great sensitivity to others’ darkness, which when understood can be used for healing, but when misunderstood can be used for hurting.

They will express direct Pisces energy for a very short about of time before taking on Aries energy. Aries is ruled by the God of War so these Pisces may be more inclined to fight rather than flee when hurt. They are still inherently sensitive, so it’s important that they learn to direct their aggression somewhere positive. It’s possible that they had to develop a sense of defense at a young age because of a parent or sibling, so now while they tend to feel deeply, it’s with a sense of caution.

Can you see the similarities in how the age each Pisces progresses into Aries can also be seen through decans? How the planets seem to progress into more Aries quality?

You can apply the same understanding to the other signs. What’s your Sun sign? What decan are you? What is your planetary sub ruler? How old were you when you progressed into the next sign? How does that influence your expression of your Sun sign? Do you see a relationship between the two?

Feel free to leave a comment about your relationship between decans and progressions!

Positive energy and Love!


4 thoughts on “How Progressions and Decans are Related

  1. This was nice and interesting 🙂
    I’m a second decan Aquarius. My Sun progressed into Pisces when I was about 16; a pretty turbulent time for me but I’ve read Sun progressions can onset times of great emotional distress/upheaval/change. But the Pisces energy is not so drastic of a change for me as my chart, (as noted by an astrologer) generally has a strong theme of Neptunian influence.


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