Key to Synthesis (2) Water Cannot Sustain Fire

Sun is the fuel you burn. Moon is your reigning need. Joy is the result of the successful synthesis of these two energies; what happens if these two energies are very different or downright incompatible?

If the Sun is in a Water sign (Cancer, Scorpio, or Pisces) but the Moon is in a Fire sign (Aries, Leo, or Sagittarius) or vice versa, there is a dramatic dichotomy between sensitive, deep feelings and inspired, enthusiastic emotions.

Noel Tyl made a comment regarding this combination that I want to elaborate on:

“Water cannot sustain Fire.”

The Fire Moon will need to feel important, confident and excited at work and relationships. The Sun’s energy needs to fuel the Moon, but in the case of Water Sun, the need for introspection and immersion in vulnerable (i.e. non-Fire) feelings don’t translate easily into enthusiasm.

Nourishing the Moon feels good, so those with the Fire Moon will want to sustain the enthused, inspired state for as long as possible – but at some point you run out of gas, because feeding the Fire Moon’s need doesn’t replenish the Water Sun’s fuel. Then you start to feel out of touch.

What you’ll need to do, then, is to start going down into your deeper, sensitive emotions (Fire goes up, Water sinks deeper – this is how each element feels.) This may not feel pleasant, because it may involve feelings such as pain, fear, or grief.

In choosing to stay “up” so long, we could have abandoned or suppressed the uncomfortable emotions. Letting these feelings “sink in” helps you avoid the “drying up” of emotions – it is necessary to feel these feelings rather than ignoring it.

In doing this, you’ll be able to heal and reconnect with your body – then later on enthusiasm and inspiration can begin again. We can’t feel Fire and Water at the same time (they evaporate or extinguish the other), so we’ll have to treat it like a cycle of seasons, of going up and sinking deep.

Similar thing can be said of the Fire Sun / Water Moon combination – the sensitive introspection has to be interrupted by the injection of confidence, enthusiasm and bold self assertion in order to rescue self worth and optimism.

We’re just writing about Water and Fire in this article, but if anyone wants to write/ask about other combinations feel free to comment or email me – I may add it to the post later if it feels relevant.

[UPDATE: check out the comment section for more examples shared by others – they are very good]

About Hiroki Niizato

Hiroki Niizato is a professional consulting astrologer in Florida, serving clients in US and abroad. He has been practicing astrology professionally since 2001. Hiroki is a highest honor graduate of the demanding Master’s Degree Certification Course in Astrology by Noel Tyl.

You can contact Hiroki via email at: or Phone: 727-470-4056 to ask a question or schedule a consultation.


  1. How would you view fire Sun and earth Moon working together? I’ve heard lots about this theoretically being great for practical actions towards inspired goals, but I’ve experienced it as more of a contest between wanting excitement and wanting security, with security winning out and my Sun feeling starved.

    Also, in the water/fire discussion, could this apply to Asc/Sun combinations as well? I have Scorp Asc. and Sag Sun, and this exact dynamic, of outward-then-inward, or up-then-down, feels familiar to me.

  2. I'd also like more discussion about the fire sun and water moon. I am intensely Sagittarius with 5 planets in the sign and my Ascendant, 3 of those planets ( Sun, Venus & Uranus) fall in the 12th House. While Mercury & Saturn fall conjunct in the 11th house. My sun conjoins my ascendant and Venus & & Uranus are conjoined as well. My 12th house forms a nice Square to my Pisces moon in the 3rd house. I agree that I spend a lot of time trying to fill both energies one at a time.

    There are times where I MUST be alone and feel imposed upon when I can't get that wish. And there are times when I feel caged in and very alone and starved for human interaction and fun.

  3. Hiroki Niizato says:

    Hi L, J:

    Great comments, thank you very much!

    L: your 1st paragraph says all – hard to add anything more to it…I agree it’s okay to apply this to Sun/Ascendant combination.

    J: thank you very much for the corroboration – so we can see how the dichotomy is experienced.

    Much appreciated,

  4. Timothy Neilson says:


    Well done… from a Piscean Sun-Aries Moon blend I have to full heatedly agree with your latest post and congratulate you for nailing it.

    The enthusiastic forward leaning thrust called for from a fire Moon is saturated with egocentric needs like being important (as you mentioned), feeling honored and respected and admired. Often times the emotions can stall, delay or reverse the forward action due to the contemplative nature you mention. The fuel from Pisces isn’t for forwarding the movement as much as it is for understanding, suffering or sacrificing etc. What’s potentially interesting to consider is the soulfulness of the Water joining with the Spirit of fire and fueling a progress that has the motivating purpose of LOVE… but especially with Aries the progress will of necessity move forward in fits and starts.

    Awesome Job

    Tim Neilson

  5. Hiroki Niizato says:

    Hi Tim,

    Great insight expressed so eloquently!! I resonate with the idea about spirit and love, which is a very worthy goal to have…a spiritual synthesis if you will.

    Thank you for contributing!

  6. Hiroki – Thanks for your efforts with the blog. Sharing information via the internet is a great way for all of us to learn more and keep up to date with the latest techniques.

    As Tim expressed so well, the energies of the water element can work well to fuel the needs and drives of fire in a positive and healthy way. I have a Cancer Sun, first house, and a Sagittarian Moon, sixth house. The people I work with have become an extended family to me (Moon in 6th). I find that the nurturing, emotional and compassionate nature of my Cancer Sun has worked well to fuel the fiery needs of my Sagittarian Moon. My greatest pleasure at work is achieved by helping my coworkers. I take the time to listen to them, instill in them confidence, optimism and hope (Sagittarius) during times of crises, and always express a genuine interest in their personal lives. I believe that this benefits all of us and I don’t think I would expend that time and energy if I did not have the strong Cancer Sun/Asc water element from which to draw.

    Happy Holidays to you and your readers.


  7. Hiroki Niizato says:

    Hi Bill,

    Thank you very much for sharing your personal experience of the two energies working well together! We can see that the right environment can help to bring out the best potential within our horoscope…

    Much appreciated,

  8. Hi Hiroki
    thank you for sharing your knowledge on the internet it is very thought provoking to read this :)
    I was just reading your other post about Mercury & Sun being out of sign, and now this one about a Water-Sun and Fire-Moon… and it has got me thinking about the Water-Sun with the Fire-Mercury…
    would that mean that the Water-Sun with the depths of emotions find it difficult to be expressed through Fire-Mercury, and so there’s either lots of enthusiastic talk that’s not emotional, OR there’s lots of introversion and deep thinking but no feeling??
    did I make sense in trying to explain???
    I look forward to you reply :)

    • Hi Lea, it would help our learning if you can share how you actually experience the combination (if you have it).

      There is always feeling with Water Sun. Mercury in Fire suggests that it would be more effective to assume a bold, assertive style of communication despite the water Sun’s sensitivity.

  9. Hello Hiroki,
    Thank you so much for this article. I’ve got my Sun in Cancer and Moon in Sagittarius (with Libra Rising). I experience a lot of inner conflict. I’m out of touch with my emotions, it’s like I’m operating on two separate tracks, difficult to articulate. I’ve also got Mercury in Leo. Do you have any further suggestions for my particular combination?
    I look forward to your reply!

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