Leo The Show-Off? Well, Let’s See
On to the next episode of digging under astrological sound bites to see if there’s a foundation to support them. Today’s mission: “They’re such show-offs” as it applies to the sign of Leo. Well, it pretty much hits the mark, but NOT, let me repeat NOT for reasons we often project on them.
Leo is the fifth sign of the horoscope and is associated with the house of children. No, that does not mean Leos are childish, egocentric or immature—at least no more than any of us from any other sign. It’s a pretty even playing field among signs in that department.
Each sign indicates a particular age, stage of life, and what the lessons of that age are for all of us. Leo and the fifth house represent the child just beginning to get out of home and family into school and community, beginning to try out life more freely than in earlier years with often unpredictable outcomes which we euphemistically refer to as “learning experiences” or “teachable moments.”
Here’s where the “show-off” label comes in
Leos get reputations for being show-offs and even egomaniacs because they need an audience. What’s helpful for us (and them) to understand is that its real purpose isn’t for ego-motivated applause, but for feedback. Without this, they have great difficulty assessing their value, their skill levels. This is symbolized by the fact that Leo’s ruling “planet” is the Sun, the only body in our solar system that radiates its own light and power.
The Sun radiates; it does not reflect. Likewise, it’s often a harder lesson for those expressing the archetype of Leo to learn that reflection is not only necessary, it is available though not consciously recognized at first without practice. So Leos do what they do best—they shine! Wow—do they shine!
But stay tuned, because none of us are off that hook. We all have Leo in our charts somewhere, and I’ll get to that later in this post.
Leo and the fifth-house expressions are key pathways to the means by which children learn who they are and how best to help them grow. And part of that, as anyone who has spent more than half an hour with a young child can tell you, is responding to, “Hey, watch this!” It’s our job to understand why, as stated in an excerpt from the “Sun in Leo” section of my book, Humanus Astrologicus.
Of who they are they’ve not much sense
Unless they have an audience.
Like children learning something new
They have to play it back to you
For confidence in what they’ve learned
Though not yet sure just what that earned.
If you have Sun in Leo, reflect on this and you’ll no doubt agree. Since we all have Leo someplace in our charts, check out the house Leo rules in your chart along with the ruling planets of that house and see if that isn’t true. I hate to tell you how long I’d been both practicing and teaching astrology before discovering this.
I have Leo on my 10th house cusp, my Sun in the 6th, so Leo is very prominent in my work spheres. And a lot of my career has been leonine: Often in front of audiences, breaking new ground. However, I didn’t know when I first started out that I was good at developing strategies and forming alliances for the “new ways” that succeeded. I thought I was just lucky I was getting such great jobs and never had to apply for them—they found me. Then I started paying attention to feedback and found out future employers recognized capacities I’d exhibited that were at that time unconscious with me.
Most people born with Sun in Leo would deny they have show-off tendencies, particularly when there are so many who are uncomfortable in the spotlight. (Yes, they exist—plenty of them.) Leos still radiate something that gets them noticed, even when they don’t want to be. But when they do seek attention, nobody, and I mean nobody, can turn on the Klieg lights as people born under this sign.
Leo and the fifth-house also represent the archetypal patterns of creativity, gambling, investment and other risk-taking ventures. What ties them all together is that these are experiences initiated by the individual but their outcomes can’t be completely controlled. There are risks, which the Leo is constitutionally prepared to take.
For example, step up to a craps table and roll the dice. No matter how well you’ve learned the strategies, you’re still at the mercy of the dice once thrown. However, you’re in charge of what amounts you bet and when you walk away. That’s if you’ve also been learning good judgment along the way and can maintain control when the ride gets wild. Send your child off to college and in spite of all the preparation and oversight, you still have little control over what really happens to your dreams and plans for that child.
Leo is about the heart
So when Leos step into spotlights that clearly have their names on them, show your appreciation for their magnificence—if deserved. But if they come off pompous and bloviating, truly showing off, be gentle. They may seem unconquerable but remember that they rule the house of children, and also remember the Cowardly Lion of Oz.
How the heart develops, not just the heart of Leo children but all children, deeply impacts the course and quality of each person’s life and those with whom it’s shared. It’s how we learn who we are, how we take that inside us, shape it, and pass it on to others that contribute to the measure of the culture we live in.
The violence that often surrounds our everyday lives is a result of the absence of gentleness and understanding when required. A reminder not just about Leos but all children, again from Humanus Astrologicus:
They can’t contribute, do their parts
Until awakening their hearts.
Until that time they need to seek
The spotlight, show how they’re unique.
If you want their power and passion
To evolve in gentler fashion
Work with lion cubs on taming,
Not on punishment and shaming.
So check this information out with the Leos in your life as well as the areas of your life ruled by Leo and the Sun in your chart.