Sun Quincunx Moon Natal Aspect: Is There a Nagging Discontent?

The quincunx aspect in astrology, characterized by planets positioned 150 degrees apart, holds a peculiar place in the astrological lexicon. Its nature is often described as fluctuating between smooth, almost unnoticed expressions of energy and a more challenging, irksome vibe that can catch an individual off guard. This duality captures the essence of the quincunx: it doesn’t scream for attention like a square or opposition might, with their more overt challenges and confrontations, yet it insists on being acknowledged through subtler, often indirect influences on one’s psyche and life circumstances. When the quincunx involves the Sun and Moon—the two most significant luminaries in astrology—the effect takes on a more pronounced significance in an individual’s chart. The Sun represents our core identity, ego, and life force, while the Moon governs our emotions, instincts, and subconscious needs. A quincunx between these powerful forces can suggest a conflict within the self, where the conscious and unconscious parts of our psyche are in a constant state of adjustment and realignment.

This aspect can manifest as a feeling of being slightly out of sync with oneself. For instance, what an individual consciously strives for and identifies with (Sun) may seem oddly disjointed from their emotional needs and instinctual responses (Moon). It’s as though there’s a perpetual need to reconcile two distinct parts of oneself that don’t naturally align. This can lead to a sense of internal friction, where the path to integrating these energies isn’t straightforward, requiring a nuanced understanding of oneself and often leading to significant personal growth.

People with a Sun quincunx Moon aspect in their natal chart  may notice that certain life events or personal developments trigger the quincunx’s energy more than others, leading to periods of introspection and adjustment. Interestingly, because the quincunx doesn’t have the raw intensity of a square or opposition, individuals might not always give it due credit for the influence it wields in their lives. It’s a bit like background noise that one has grown accustomed to; it’s only when it varies in tone or volume that one might recognize its presence and impact. Thus, exploring the subtleties of a quincunx, especially between the Sun and Moon, requires a keen astrological insight and a deep dive into the personal life.

Many people have quincunx aspects in their charts, but their impact can be subtle. Some might not even notice them. Others feel a distinct energy, but it’s not the dramatic clash of a square or opposition. However, the quincunx involving the Sun and Moon, the luminaries that shape our core selves, these individuals might be particularly attuned to the quincunx’s influence, as it interacts with such fundamental aspects of their psyche. The quincunx represents a kind of uneven flow, a disconnect that can be challenging to bridge. But perhaps, within that challenge lies opportunity. After all, friction can spark creativity, and he quincunx might serve as a gentle nudge to explore new perspectives, to find a way to integrate these seemingly disparate energies.

Astrologer Sue Tompkins believes the energies in the quincunx aspect just miss each other completely. No clash or stare-down, but more of a nagging feeling, a low-grade stress that simmers beneath the surface. It’s not a full-on roadblock, more like a series of minor annoyances. The quincunx  connects signs that share neither element (fire, earth, air, water) nor modality (cardinal, fixed, mutable). This lack of commonality suggests that the energies represented by these signs do not naturally align or understand each other, leading to a subtle yet persistent sense of discomfort or misalignment in the individual’s psyche or life experiences.

Tompkins says that the planets involved in a quincunx “interfere with each other’s expression but don’t prevent or challenge the expression or operation of the aspect.” Unlike the more overt confrontations seen in squares or oppositions, where the tension between planets demands immediate attention and action, the quincunx represents a more chronic, underlying state of irritation. The author also states that the stress lies between the signs rather than the planets themselves, which offers a path to alleviating the discomfort associated with this aspect.

Since the signs govern the expression of the planets’ energies, finding ways to bridge the gap between these incompatible signs can help in harmonizing the quincunx’s influence.

Quincunx or Inconjunct?

What bothers me about this aspect is that it’s referred to by two different names. I catch myself alternating between them; sometimes I’ll call it the inconjunct, and then the quincunx, which is a bit annoying.

Here is the answer for the dual names for this aspect:


The terms “quincunx” and “inconjunct” in astrology refer to the same aspect, which is when two planets are approximately 150 degrees apart. The reason there are two names for this aspect stems from its characteristics and historical development in astrological practice. Quincunx: This term has its roots in Latin, where “quinque” means five and “uncus” means a hook or a fifth part of a circle (since a circle is 360 degrees, a fifth of this is 72 degrees; however, the term quincunx is used to denote 5/12 of a circle, which is 150 degrees). The term was initially used in Roman architecture and gardening to refer to a specific arrangement of five points, with one at each corner of a square and one in the center. In astrology, the quincunx aspect involves a similar concept of an arrangement or relationship, but in this case, it’s about the angular distance between planets. The term emphasizes the geometric and spatial relationship between the planets involved. Inconjunct: This term more directly describes the nature of the astrological relationship. “Inconjunct” literally means “not joined” or “not connected,” highlighting the astrological interpretation that planets in this aspect are in signs that have no modality (cardinal, fixed, mutable) or element (fire, earth, air, water) in common, suggesting a lack of harmony or a difficulty in blending their energies. This name reflects the challenge of integrating the qualities and themes of the planets involved.

Maybe this is what Sue Tompkins means when she says the planets they don’t see each other in the quincunx  (“not joined” or “not connected”). Which word do you prefer, or do you alternate between the two? Interestingly enough, when I read the word “inconjunct,” I often think of something unhinged (“not joined”); that image always comes to mind, whether it’s true or not. But then other astrologers must have tuned into something similar, as they call it the “neurotic” aspect. Some perceive it as just not quite aligned. It may also be referred to as the “almost-but-not-quite” aspect.

The quincunx aspect between the Sun and Moon, can manifest in oscillations between periods of apparent harmony and moments of discord or internal conflict. At times, individuals with this aspect may experience a sense of alignment between their sense of self (Sun) and their emotional needs (Moon), feeling integrated, balanced, and at ease with both aspects of their psyche. During these phases, their self-expression may flow smoothly, and they may feel confident in pursuing their goals while also nurturing their emotional well-being.

However, a dichotomy can emerge, disrupting this sense of equilibrium. Suddenly, the individual may feel a dissonance between their conscious identity and their emotional landscape. They might find themselves torn between their ambitions, driven by the Sun’s influence, and their inner emotional needs, governed by the Moon. This conflict can manifest as insecurity or a sense of being pulled in different directions.

For example, there may be moments when the individual feels a strong urge to pursue their goals and express themselves outwardly, propelled by the Sun’s energy. Yet, simultaneously, they may also yearn for emotional fulfillment and a deeper connection with their inner world, reflecting the Moon’s influence. This tug-of-war between the demands of the ego and the needs of the soul can create a sense of discomfort or unease.

During these periods of tension, the individual may struggle to find a harmonious balance between their outward actions and their inner emotional state. They may vacillate between prioritizing their external responsibilities and attending to their innermost desires, unsure of which path to follow. This uncertainty can lead to moments of introspection and self-reflection as they seek to reconcile these seemingly conflicting aspects of themselves.

The Sun Quincunx Moon Natal Aspect: The Need for Adjustment

The adjustment required by this aspect can manifest in various aspects of life, including family dynamics, psychological well-being, and the overall balance between external aspirations and internal needs. In family dynamics, individuals with a Sun quincunx Moon aspect may find themselves in situations where they feel compelled to continually adjust their own desires and ambitions to accommodate the needs of their family members. This dynamic could lead to feelings of frustration or resentment, as they struggle to find a balance between pursuing their own goals and fulfilling familial obligations. The constant need for adjustment may create an ongoing source of irritation, highlighting the tension between their sense of self and their emotional connections to others.

On a psychological level, the Sun quincunx Moon aspect may manifest as a persistent feeling of discomfort or unease, stemming from the inability to fully integrate the conscious and unconscious aspects of the self. Despite their efforts to live authentically and pursue their own aspirations (Sun), individuals may find themselves struggling with underlying emotional needs and subconscious patterns (Moon) that seem to pull them in different directions. This internal conflict can create a sense of psychological discomfort, as they strive to find a sense of wholeness and alignment within themselves.

Furthermore, if the Sun quincunx Moon aspect is part of a Finger of Fate configuration, which often indicates a sense of fated or unavoidable change, individuals may find themselves confronted with circumstances that force them to adapt and adjust in significant ways. This could involve unexpected life events or transitions that challenge their existing beliefs, priorities, or sense of identity. While such changes may initially be disruptive or unsettling, they ultimately provide an opportunity for growth and evolution, encouraging individuals to be more flexible and make some adjustments in the face of adversity.

An Imaginary Scenario Between the Sun Quincunx Moon

Someone with a Sun-Moon quincunx in their chart, may have always felt a strong pull between their career ambitions (Sun) and their role within the family (Moon). Perhaps they have an opportunity for a significant promotion that would require relocating to a different city. While the career move aligns perfectly with their conscious goals and self-image, it conflicts with their deep emotional need for closeness and support from their family. The quincunx plays out when there is significant stress trying to reconcile these two parts of themselves. On one hand, pursuing the promotion represents fulfilling their personal ambitions and achieving a sense of success and recognition (Sun). On the other, staying close to family caters to their need for emotional security and belonging (Moon). Resolution: The tension may lead to seek creative solutions, such as negotiating remote work options or arranging regular visits home. This scenario underscores the need to acknowledge and honor both their personal ambitions and emotional needs, finding a balanced way to address the inherent conflict posed by the Sun-Moon quincunx.

Individuals with a Sun quincunx Moon aspect may struggle to reconcile what they want and need on a conscious level with their subconscious emotional requirements and instincts. There can be a sense that what makes them feel secure and nurtured (Moon) is somewhat at odds with their life path or purpose (Sun). This aspect necessitates constant adjustment and adaptation. People may find themselves frequently trying to balance or negotiate between their emotional needs and their identity or goals, often feeling like they have to compromise one for the sake of the other.

Here is an interpretation by Karen Hamaker-Zondag:

“A quincunx between the Sun and Moon gives a dormant, clandestine tension that does in fact produce a great sense of insecurity, although the native is only marginally aware of it. Something is quite likely to be bothering him but he is unable to say what it is. Because the two lights have to do with the life force, this aspect can undermine the vitality every now and then. However, nothing need be seriously wrong; the cause is usually an inability to relax properly. There is a complete cleavage between conscious behavior and the unconscious reaction pattern. This leads to considerable confusion in everyday life: the attitude adopted to the outside world is entirely different from the attitude the native would like to adopt. Because the active and passive sides operate quite independently, it is often to strike a balance between work and repose. The restlessness indicates a need to keep occupied and there is a danger that the energy will be expended at the wrong time and place. Problems the native should solve tend to become intractable because he dithers over them or tries to ignore them. Troubled relationships may be expected too with this Sun/Moon aspect. Usually husband and wife have completely different dispositions and expect to lead their own lives. The quincunx is more likely than the hard aspects to obstruct the view of the problem areas, which can therefore become more painful and tiresome. The quincunx between the Sun and the Moon can raise false hopes about the partner which tend to end in disappointment. After a crisis, the dilemma connected with the inconjunct can be seen more clearly and the situation can be resolved. In other words, a sense of balance can be developed through weathering a crisis — although the native will always be aware that the balance is precarious.”