…and it will happen again. As a Sci-fi junkie, I will never miss an opportunity to reference the Reimagined Battlestar Galactica, with all of its esoteric themes. But while this quote is uttered frequently during the course of that series, it does not originate with BSG. It was actually the first laid down by J.M. Barrie as the very first sentence from his classic novel, Peter Pan. In both creative endeavors, the cyclical nature of events is addressed and reoccuring patterns are examined. As an astrologer, this vantage point is at the core of how I and my peers explain and comprehend the world around us, using the movements and relationships between the material bodies in the Solar System and larger galaxy as the words, grammar and syntax of our language.
I have had this quote on my mind since Jupiter transitioned into Capricorn, but particularly since January. I have read endless commentary from my peers discussing the intensity of this period, with Mars, Jupiter, Saturn and Pluto all occupying the cold, dry, remote sign of the goat. We could all see the signs that we were heading for difficulty. Some astrologers have engaged in what borders on apocalypse word porn, to a nearly sociopathic level. Some others, as a response, took the new-age mental oblivion route of claiming that such anyone who has trepidations of this time period are alarmists who are manifesting their own fears.
I personally take a more measured approach as it relates simply to the transition of Jupiter from Sagittarius to Capricorn, which is thematic of the time period. We cannot have endless expansion and abundance, which Jupiter favors. Just ask our waistlines. We become dull, lazy automatons. Conversely, if there is no respite from endless need, want, discipline and contraction, there really is not much point to anything. Hence the essential need for the cycles and ebbs and flow of our lives. Also, hence the need for convenient word descriptors in our astrological toolbox such as dignity, debility, domicile, detriment, exaltation, fall, etc.
I could go on and on about the philosophy behind some of these topics, but I am pressed for time today. There is no doubt that we are dealing with times that are as trying as they were during the Great Depression. The scope and length of time surrounding this Saturnine contraction insures that we are facing a greater global economic recession than those following 9/11 or the market collapse of 2008. This isn’t fear-mongering. Those are facts. We don’t get to the point where we learn the lesson and rebuild our lives and paint the positive spin unless we engage in a honest appraisal of the facts. There is also no doubt to me as a healthcare worker, a Christian and as astrologer that we are being forced to examine the reality of our governments, our science, our apathy, and our relationship to the natural world. Joaquin got that right in his poignant and eloquent award speech. We are disconnected from the natural world, from our communities, our families, our gods. God will always use any opportunity to get our attention.
Ok, down to brass tacks. There are two charts I want to glance at today as guideposts going forward. The first is the chart for a possible Corona virus patient zero and the second is the Aries ingress chart, which occured within the past 12 hours. Happy Vernal Equinox, by the way. First up, Corona patient zero. Public health officials have focused in on a possible patient zero as having presented to an ER in Wuhan, China on November 17, 2019. I am citing China as ground zero, because those are the facts that we are presented with at this time.
If anyone feels I am unfairly targeting the Chinese people, rest assure that is not the case. As a Westerner, I can turn my nose up at the wet market practices in China, and I agree that they are horrific. However, I have to admit that the way we treat the animals we have deigned acceptable to eat in this country also live in similarly horrific conditions, living on top of each other, fattened to the point that they can’t move, living in such close proximity that they pass infections on to each other, etc. I could go on, but the topic is extremely, mind-numbingly unsettling to me. I don’t know that I have the stones to go vegan, and I do not necessarily agree that I would have to do so to become more connected to the natural world as Mr. Phoenix suggests. But there is no doubt that there is plenty of room to point the finger back on ourselves here, in so many ways.
This is the patient zero chart. We have to throw out the ascendant and therefore all the houses in this chart, because we do not know a time. I chose 7pm for the time, because it seems like a likely time a person would knock off work and go to the ER. The single biggest point I would choose to emphasize here is Mercury retrograde in Scorpio. I have seen quite a few people focus on the more recent Mercury retrograde in this pandemic. The only thing Mercury rx accomplished recently was to remove our blinders with regards to this issue. As soon as Mercury fell back into Aquarius, the rubber band Mercury pulled back was released, and the momentum of our awareness surrounding Corona was released, at least on the global level. Obviously, China and Italy were already well into the thick of this. Mercury in Pisces is not keen to distinguish lines and details. Mercury in Pisces retrograde is particulary damaged.
Mercury rx in Scorpio is the original author of the Corona story, and I would like to point out that Mercury had just completed its big transit of the Sun six days prior. Mercury deals with telling stories and disseminating information. Mercury in Scorpio deals with a thorough, probing examination of the information it is presented. Mercury with its hairline tight transit of the Sun harnesses the light and heat of the Sun through a magnifying glass and burns away whatever is in its path. All talk of fire aside, Scorpio also deals with things like still water and unsanitary conditions. So, Scorpio is telling that tale. Mercury completes its retrogade journey within three days of patient zero. If we cite a two week incubation period for the Corona virus in the body, we arrive at November 3rd, which is two days from the start of the retrogade period. I have stated before that I do not ascribe to the idea that Mercury in phasis is particularly relevant, due to the amount of time it is in phasis by definition. I am arriving to the conclusion that rather than eliminate it as a concept, I would be inclined to cut the time period in half to 3.5 days instead of seven.
So Mercury identifies the flaws in the system and communicates this information to Saturn, Pluto, the South Node and Ceres in Capricorn. This chart could also be a Ceres ingress chart, an idea in which I will have to save for another time. I am not as comfortable using asteroids, but I always include Ceres. One thing I heard said about Ceres and I cannot cite the source is that Ceres nurtures by…..(insert the qualities of the sign she is transversing). Well, Ceres in Capricorn, bolstered by Saturn in his own domicile nutures us by contraction and discipline. We are all feeling that now. We are also dealing with a virus which targets the elderly and spares the young. I am not on the Boomer hating band-wagon, but I would say there is some pretty heavy karma for that generation, especially here in the US, where a single generation of people, representing a fraction of the world’s population, devoured a disproportionate chunk of the world’s resources. My contention and concession for them is that probably anyone would have dropped the abundance ball.
Mercury cooperates well with Capricorn, but has no idea what Jupiter and Mars are up to. Jupiter and Mars play well with each other and the 12th part of Jupiter is close to Mars. Mars has existed in a contentious capacity with the Capricorn grouping, although he is pulling away from them. Mars in his detriment is a warrior for justice in Libra and his aggression is supported by a strong Jupiter. If there was any element of foul play from any person, group of people or government, I feel that it is possibly illustrated here. It is virtually impossible for us to know the truth on this matter, and I would not fall for any rhetoric from any government or official who points the finger. Mercury in Scorpio does not have the answer to that question. He does not play with Libra or Sagittarius. This pairing of Mars and Jupiter could very well point to the unjust accucastions made by blustering gasbags:)
A brief glimpse of the US Aries ingress chart:
Scorpio Ascendant places us right in the thick of the quagmire defined in November. The Ascendant is ruled by Mars, who is the sect malefic. He is applying to the out-of-sect benefic, Jupiter. Prudent, restricive action will likely safe-guard our health, but Saturn is the unfettered out-of-sect malefic here. We will take loses. The angles are fixed, which is sustained energy. Where we find ourselves is where we will remain for a while. We will likely be hunkering down for more than two weeks.
The sect light is the Moon in the 4th. She is in aversion to her ruler, Saturn, and engaging in a lovely, cooperative relationship with the sect benefic, Venus in Taurus. Venus here accomplishes everything she promises. Again, this supports prudent action, humanitarianism and the sharing of resources. We are all willingly embracing tenants of socialism in this crisis, and I have personally found a major Taurus emphasis in the charts of famous people with those leanings. Taurus is rarely a hoarder. That would be an unfair modern interpretation of Taurean principles. Venus plays nice with everyone she needs to in this chart. We are experiencing an increased sentiment of bi-partisianship or a-partisianship at this time, with exceptions, of course (Venus 12th part in Scorpio). Exalted Sun in Aries is in the 6th house of health and of the common folk. We are likely to rise to the occasion here and the overall health of the citizens of our nation will not be as hard hit as other countries.
Within days of this chart, Saturn rolls into Aquarius. His elemental qualities are no longer as cold and dry. This bodes well for the natural dissipation of the Corona virus. He cooperates well with a warming Sun in Aries. These two guys arrive in the nick of time. Not necessarily to prevent serious changes to our way of life, but certainly to safeguard to very essence of our lives themselves. Saturn, a diurnal planet, prefers to reside in masculine Aquarius versus feminine Capricorn. Tensions will be eased, but society will be transformed. Now, like with the 1918 Spanish Flu, as well as with other viruses, Corona is likely to re-emerge later this year. Coincidentally, Saturn will retrograde back into Capricorn and we will experience a long transit of Mars in Aries, because he will also retrograde. Do not rest on your laurels. And try not to be caught up in contentious sentiments later this year.
I am attaching this painting, entitled Spring, painted by Giuseppe Arcimboldo in 1563, just to inject a bit obsurdity into our lives.
Also, do not be surprised if I tweak this 10,000 times.
I am the Lord your God, who brought you out of Egypt, when you were slaves. You shall have no other God before me.
I would begin this post by making the bold claim that November 2019 is an exciting and unusual month both astronomically and astrologically. But to be honest, when you closely study an ephemeris and the sky on a regular basis, every month is exciting. In fact, I have been studying the heavens to some degree nearly all my life, and I only find myself feeling more passion and wonder, not less. I suppose that it is when you have truly arrived at your purpose and calling in life. In this instance though, a whole bunch of people besides me are gaga over tomorrow’s celestial event.
Less than 12 hours from now, Mercury will transit or occult the Sun. Bascially, this is similar to a Solar eclipse, in that Mercury will pass between the Sun and the Earth to form a inferior conjunction with the Sun. This marks the beginning of a new 116 day cycle of Mercury. Conjunctions occur astrologically when planets line up by longitude. Parallels occur when planets line up by declination (latitude). Eclipses, transits and occultations occur when bodies are both conjunct and parallel. Furthermore, these less common astro phenonenon occur when a planet crosses over one its nodes. In this case, Mercury will cross its ascending (north) node from south to north.
Tomorrow, Mercury will conjunct the Sun at 18°55′ Scorpio and will parallel the Sun at 17°S26′. With such precision numbers, if it were the Moon and not Mercury, the Sun would be totally eclipsed. As it is, Mercury will appear as but a freckle on the face of Sol. During the 2017 solar eclipse, the Sun and Moon were at 28°52′ longitude in Leo, and they were at 11°N51′ and 12°N16′ respectively. The lunar nodes were at 13°N and S respectively. Our Mercury transit coordinates are even tighter. During the solar eclipse of July 2018, which was only partial, there was an 82 minute separation between the declination of the Sun and the Moon. The Nodes were 15 degrees away from the luminaries. I think you can see where I am going here. When the transit of Mercury numbers are tight, Mercury cuts right across the heart of the Sun. Less precise declination results in Mercury cutting across anywhere from less than center to the rims of the Sun.
So, what does this mean for us in the wide world of astro sports? On one hand, Mercury will be cazimi. A planet is generally harmed by the rays of a Sun during a close conjunction and is considered combust. When is planet is cazimi, it is within a 17′ radius of the Sun on either side, the affairs of the planets are not hampered, they are amplified. So Mercury in Scorpio will receive a tremendous boost from his association with the Sun. How this plays out will depend on the house and sect of Mercury, which will depend on your location.
Now, cazimi is considered beneficial, but eclipses are not. I have to wonder if too much potentcy is such a good thing. We shall see. The possibly of too much potency with Scorpio is always a legitimate issue on its own. I would place less emphasis on the apparent retrograde motion of Mercury. The inferior conjunction of Mercury occurs halfway through the retrograde period, therefore, it is not quite as intense as when Mercury is stationing. Pay attention to the behavior of those around you and the events of the world and even your own internal processes. Mercury in Scorpio has a laser focus by its own merit. This transit will likely cut to the core of any matter.
I wish I could dive more into this, but I have school work and then work-work in the am. I know; I should have planned ahead!:) Here is the chart for tomorrow’s transit taken from my location. Also, below that, I am providing a couple of valuable astronomical links for this event from people who have a much deeper technological understanding than I do. I am also providing a link to the Swiss Ephemeris, where you can calculate the nodes of all the planets.
(As an aside: note that the Part of Faith aligns with Spirit when the Sun and Mercury are conjoined. This is due to the formulas used to derive those two parts. Interestingly, the Part of Faith appeared on my Janus charts without me prompting it. I suspect this relates to some work I did about Notre Dame earlier in the year, which I didn’t get to print in a timely manner. I probably selected that part and then forgot about. It fell off my visual radar until now, but interacts with several key points over the next month, and the last month Jupiter is in his domicile. I will discuss this more later in the week.)
The featured image for this post is a Medieval take on key divisions of philosophy: arithmetic, geometry, music, astronomy, called the Quadrivium. The Quadrivium relates to the seven liberal arts dating back to ancient Greece.
The diagram I posted depicting the transit of Mercury is from an unknown source, but I located it in several disparate places online. If you are the owner of this image, please let me know so I can credit you or remove it.
We have all heard of the Chernobyl nuclear power accident, and if you have not, I commend your commitment to remaining completely untainted by modern news media and social media. Or, I scowl at your persistent clinging to ignorance and disconnection to the world around you. At any rate, while fighting the depression and despair surrounding the end of the Game of Thrones series-run, many of us found ourselves in the loving arms of HBO’s Chernobyl. In truth, this rebound was an infinity superior viewing experience anyway, proving again, that truth and reality are stranger and more compelling than any book series bastardized by Hollywood.
In the first part of my analysis, I am going to examine the event chart. Astrologically, it would be easy to look at the reactor meltdown chart as the “a-ha” chart of the day. In truth, this chart offers a startling testimony to the event of the moment. In fact, this is basically an astrologer’s fantasy chart.
We find Uranus closely conjunct the Ascendant here and nothing says “shocking, catastrophic accident” like Uranus on the Ascendant. I consider myself a traditional astrologer in training, with heavy modern sympathies. A purist traditional astrologer would tell you that he or she can effectively ignore the outer planets to delineate a chart. Being more of a hybrid astrologer, I would have to counter, “but, why though?”. I can also effectively live my life without electricity, but I can assure you, I will be availing myself of this amazing technological achievement. This is fitting astrological analogy superimposed on a study about nuclear power. You’re welcome.
We also find the nodes closely linked to the MC/IC axis. The Chernobyl story has all the hallmarks of a fated event. I will explain a bit on down the road just how fateful this story really is. Again, traditional astrologers get testy when words like fate, karma, reincarnation, and evolution get bandied about in relation to astrology and with good reason. The intellectual and spiritual nebulousness surrounding the usage of these words and the commoditization and trivialization of spiritual concepts has forced anyone who applies honest, academic energy to the study and practice of astrology to divorce themselves from perceived embarrassing concepts. I assert that these spiritual ideas have existed through-out time and have been intertwined in nearly every cultural and spiritual identity. Even the absence of these concepts in Judeo-Christian text and understanding seems intriguingly conspicuous. Vedic astrologers, whose practice of astrology is directly linked to the Hindu faith, have no quarrel with these precepts, and they maintain an unbroken tradition of astrologic study reaching back two millennia, one closely related to western astrology.
With this in mind, I describe Chernobyl as a fated, karmic incident as evidenced by the location of the Nodes on the MC/IC axis. These nodes are activated by a Full Lunar eclipse, which occurred on April 24, 1986. You can suspect the involvement of Nodal/Eclipse activity in a chart anytime you see the Sun closely linked with one of the Nodes. Nothing says fate and catastrophe quite the same way an eclipse does. With regards to events that are fated, or have broader social contexts, we also look to the relationship between Jupiter and Saturn. Both of these planets are in the stakes of the chart, the stakes being the 1st, 4th, 7th and 10th houses. Stakes represent four key areas of our life: ourselves, our background, our partners and/or competitors, and our profession and social reputation. Planets in the stakes are able to fully realize their potential. They keep their promises.
Any planet in a house tends to overrule the influence of the house Lord. Jupiter is Lord of the Ascendant, but Saturn is contained within the 1st house. Saturn in Sagittarius represents the self, which was fully linked to the State and the ideology of statism in the Soviet Union. The notion of statism takes on a certain religious zeal, particularly when it is the defining philosophy of a society and particularly when no competing philosophy is permitted. Jupiter confirms Sagittarian notions of State worship while residing in Pisces. In this sense, the love of State, and the absolute consolidation of power to the State, is no different than the love of church or king. The Chernobyl reactor was an extension of the State. It was undoubtedly a source of state pride that the whole of Soviet Russia and its unitary republics could enjoy electrical power due to these reactors and do to the supremacy of Communism.
By 1986, statism was deeply entrenched in the Soviet Union. Whole generations of people where at various helms who had never been meaningfully exposed to another way or life or another thought process. Statism was also becoming staid and calcified. One could not question the will of the Saturnine State and one existed to serve the State. The benevolence of Jupiter in Pisces is buried in the 4th house. Jupiter dictated the affairs of Sagittarius, but Sagittarius dictates the actions of Pisces, because it is in a superior position to Pisces. Saturn is in a superior square to Jupiter and he won the coin toss, because he is in the first house. Squares are not necessarily a bad thing. While planets involved in a square to each other represent friction, they behold one another, so there is a possibility of resolution. Additionally, Sagittarius and Pisces share a ruler in Jupiter. Regardless, Saturn has the ball here and he fumbles it repeatedly during the course of the two hours preceding the meltdown and the first several hours after.
When we move past the most stunningly obvious aspects of this chart, we can examine other aspects. All planets offer testimony to the condition of the chart and the events or things they represent. I am not going to examine every planet in full, but I will examine the activity of the other key player: the Moon. If an astrological chart is analogous to a photograph and Jupiter and Saturn are the central objects of that picture, the Moon is a staggering photo-bomber. Chernobyl’s chart is a night chart, therefore, the Moon is the sect light. The lights in a chart take precedence over the activities of all other contributors, regardless of where these bodies are placed.
Moon in Scorpio is Full and she has just risen over the eastern horizon. She is “in hayz”, because she is happy in the hemisphere above the horizon, she is placed in a feminine sign, and she is neither a morning star or an evening star. She rises just after the Sun sets. She has recently been blighted by the Earth two days prior during a Total Lunar Eclipse. She is in her fall in Scorpio, but she enjoys dignity in her own triplicity. She is bolstered by Mars in Capricorn, who is exalted. As with Jupiter and Saturn, Moon gives orders to Mars, who is technically stronger. Mars works hard for the Moon, even if his assigned task is to aid in destruction.
Moon in Scorpio will never forgive a slight and is highly reactive to even perceived slights. In horary terms, a fixed sign Moon in a cadent house will hold onto her anger forever. The Moon on this night is powerful and angry. She embodies “hell hath no fury.” The Moon is more fertile in Scorpio than anywhere else, but boundless fertility can be highly destructive. Imagine a family with 10+ kids. There is simply not enough time or resources to care for all those people. Imagine a still body of water with an overgrowth of algae. Eventually, the oxygen is depleted, and the water becomes stagnant. Only the hardiest survive those conditions.
Moon in Scorpio in the 12th speaks of things that are convalescing. Chernobyl and Pripyat are in a state of convalescence which is projected to last 1,000 years. The Moon also rules the 8th house of death. Chernobyl was the biggest nuclear disaster we have suffered as a species. The death toll from this nuclear meltdown was significant. Sadly, Europeans and Russians in mass aborted babies due to fear of birth defects as a result of radiation exposure, even if the risk was deemed minimal. I am not making a statement about the issue of abortion here, but it is heartbreaking to think that women felt forced to make such a decision based on incomprehensible fear. No other issue could be more symbolic of this incident than fertility halted.
Of note, Moon in Scorpio also received strong aid from Jupiter in Pisces. Scorpio is superior to Pisces. Scorpio sees Pisces and Pisces perceives Scorpio. These two have a strong working relationship that goes beyond the fact that they are both water signs. So, Jupiter takes orders from the Moon and he perceives her. Jupiter occupies the 4th, and the Earth is absolutely scorched by the fury of Scorpio and the expansive activity of her pal, Jupiter. And while Jupiter may bow to the Moon here, Chernobyl does not bow to man. In keeping with the fertility of Scorpio and the expansive benevolence of Jupiter, Chernobyl is teeming with flora and fauna.
Now, lest you think I am kicking Moon in Scorpio in the ass, we have to consider what she is trying to do here. Why is the Moon on an unstoppable war path? For starters, the Chernobyl power reactor was marred by issues of incompetence from the moment it was launched. Chernobyl was brought online with major, well known design and safety flaws. Furthermore, Chernobyl’s lead engineer made stunningly poor decisions before, during, and after the meltdown of the reactor. These concepts can be described by Venus in Taurus ruling the MC and Mercury contained within the 5th house with the IC. Mercury in Aries tells us that the reactor was activated hastily and the design itself contained flaws. Venus in Taurus, floundering with the Sun in the 6th, simply failed to react appropriately to known safety issues. Moon is Scorpio does not appreciate the lack of attention to detail or the lethargic attitude in solving known issues. To add insult to injury, peregrine Sun in Taurus indicates the insistence that a dangerous test be conducted despite common sense.
I have said this before in conversations with other astrologers and I will codify it here. Moon in Scorpio, particularly with the overwhelming power she contained in this chart, strives to shine a spot-light on problems at all costs. All four major governmental whistle-blowers during the 21st century are Moon in Scorpio natives: Edward Snowden, Julian Assange, Chelsea Manning and Reality Winner. They shined their lights with varying levels of acceptability and provoke varying degrees of public sympathy, support or derision. In all instances, they provide this information at the expense of themselves. Sadly, the result of their actions is not always the desired outcome. That is the nature of a fallen planets. It is a bit like Cassandra from Greek mythology. She is doomed to tell the truth that no one wants to here. A key word for a fallen planet is obscurity.
More positively, I have found that many rock-and-roll vocalists have Moon in Scorpio. Think Bono, Cyndi Lauper, Pat Benatar, Christine McVie, Eric Burdon, George Harrison, Bret Michaels, Vince Neil and possibly Eric Clapton and Gregg Allman. Those are the ones I can name off the top of my head. I routinely take at least a passing glance at the charts of anyone or anything that stimulates my interest. I have ceased to be surprised at how many Moon in Scorpio natives have achieved fame through singing. The Moon finds an excellent outlet for the intense emotional energy she experiences in Scorpio. Interestingly, the Moon finds her joy in the 3rd house, a place where communication is optimal. We don’t automatically associate Scorpio with a need to speak or be heard, but she obviously functions better when she has that voice. Music is less likely to offend our personal sensibilities than traitorous behavior.
I am going to end part one of this analysis here. Again, one would think the event chart tells the tale, and this chart does spin a good yarn, but I have found several other charts that are worthy of study. I also wanted to jump on my soap box about astrologers conducting what I call a thorough “history and physical.”
(PS….I published this post with the Asc at 23 Scorpio, which links right up with Chernobyl’s Moon and the Asc and Jupiter of this site. This was completely unintentional, as I rarely time things in this manner. I believe in a more organic approach to life, so this was published when it was meant to be published versus when I thought it should be published. This does illustrate a certain synchronicity in life though. I have been bouncing around the idea to write this since January, way before I knew about the tv series.)
PPS. (1345, June 12, 2019) I chose “House of the Rising Sun” as sang by The Animal’s Eric Burdon in order to highlight the raw passion and talent of Moon in Scorpio music. He is probably the most talented on that list, although Christine McVie’s Songbird is breathtaking and gentle….truly the song I would pick to express my love for a man. The serendipitous thing about picking Eric Burdon is that he also has Sag Rising, Sun and Venus in Taurus and Moon in Scorpio. In fact, Eric has Saturn, The Sun, Venus, Mercury, Uranus and Jupiter in Taurus in the 6th (not only are all these planets co-present, but they range from 18-27 degrees, so they are conjunct by anyone definition off orb. Furthermore, his Venus, Mercury and Uranus are within 18 minutes of each other.) He also has Moon in Scorpio in the 12th and Mars in Aquarius in the 3rd. So basically , he is fully fixed, but experienced through a mutable lens. In keeping with his chart, he has experienced extremes highs and lows in his life and survived all of it. And his voice is truly nuclear powered. This fully illustrates why I am not a planner in anything but the most general terms. I could have never thought, “I want to find an artist with some of Chernobyl’s astrological signatures, who is likewise an forceful presence,” and found this dude’s chart. I would have been exhausted and frustrated by the attempt. I am a firm believer in life’s little “accidents.” Probably, why I am an astrologer:)
Happy Opening Day to Major League Baseball, and my personal favorite team, the New York Yankees. My Dad was and is a major jock, so one of the most instinctively soothing sounds to me is the sound of a baseball game being announced. I have been listening to Yankee games and Led Zeppelin since I was a zygote; they are encoded in my DNA. One of the few times I saw my Dad cry was the day Thurman Munson died-that is how important Yankee baseball is in my family.
One of the great things about American baseball from an astrological perspective is that each Major League Baseball team plays 162 games during the regular season and more, if a team makes it to post season play. That is 162 plus opportunities to study event charts. I will always maintain that so many astrologers blew their 2016 US presidential elections primarily because of bias. Every astrologer I know who was liberal picked Clinton. Every astrologer I know who was not liberal, or would never pick Clinton for other reasons, picked Trump. There was no objective astrological process to be found. None. To be fair to all my astrological colleagues, there is no such thing as perfect objectivity. I don’t care if you were examining the influence of NASA’s space garbage in relation to Optimus Prime in the Alpha Centuri Solar System. This is one of the reasons why doctors are not ethically permitted to treat their own family members, particularly with respect to interventional medical procedures. As an astrologers, there are times when we have to seek outside counsel when examining our own charts or the charts of our loved ones, as well. The take away here is we do have to honest enough to admit our bias.
Another big take away is that we have to find a way to hone our craft. I can’t be a proficient mundane or predictive astrologer unless I practice on a lot of charts. A lot, a lot™. Medical residents and fellows spend years practicing under another practitioner before practicing medicine on their own. Sports is an excellent way for an astrologer to hone mundane techniques. Political elections do not happen quite as often as ball games. Frequent repetition, in my mind, will help abate the influence of personal bias in astrological practice. I am not going to try to convince anyone to become a sports fan, but I will suggest that studying astrology from that perspective will be enormously beneficial. So, poke around and find something you like. I have found myself thoroughly engrossed in bowling tournments and poker games.
Which brings me to my last take away before examining today’s opening day charts. An astrologer has to seriously temper his or her expectations. Astrologers puff and crow like petulant roosters at the notion that modern science and astrology, which no matter how you practice it is based on ancient techniques and philosophy, are not compatible, nor should they be. Astrology is a conceptual language, and therefore, cannot be established by modern, scientific method means. But why? I may sound like a petulant toddler, but I do have Moon in Aries. So why? Why can’t astrology conform to modern scientific process, at least, not completely?
Let’s ponder chemistry. If I take a sodium molecule and a chloride molecule, I will make table salt every time. There is no statistical variance. The results of bringing sodium and chloride together is reproducible everytime. Well, that is brilliant if you are a molecule, or some other element of material nature which likewise interacts with other elements in a predictable way. This is also a rather impressive demonstration of the genius of God, when you consider that the elements in stars interact on the very same principles in which the salt on your French fries interact. As above, so below. There are, however, many occurrences in our realms of physical, spiritual and emotional existences which we do not understand, or to which cannot be neatly explained by a 5-step scientific method.
Perhaps I can provide further insight into why astrology and modern science are not a perfect fit, or why astrology does not illustrate scientific principles in a way we can fully understand at this moment. By the same logic, I can illustrate why modern, material science, while ENORMOUSLY BENEFICIAL, CANNOT answer all of our questions:
The Yankees play their first game today against the Baltimore Orioles. The game is set in the Bronx, New York, so we will cast a chart from that location at the time of scheduled play, with the Yankees holding the imperative, because they are the home team. There are 10 players on the field during the game during every play: the pitcher, catcher, 1st baseman, 2nd baseman, shortstop, 3rd baseman, right fielder, center fielder, and left fielder, as well as the batter from the opposing team. There are several runners on field during some plays. The opposing team also possesses a nine-man defensive starting team. There are various coaches, umpires and commentators surrounding the game in play. There are pinch hitters, designated hitters and bull-pin pitchers. There are team administrators and fans. There are even field grounds keepers and the folks who manufacture the equipment used by each team. My point being that there are many astrological charts contributing to the average baseball game. We would use the start of the game as the chart at hand, but we have to concede that there is a butterfly effect or X-factor (ala Al Morrison) applying its own imperative to every baseball game and every endeavor we conceive.
Enough philosophy: there are several opening day games in the major leagues, but only two starting at the same time: the Baltimore Orioles at the New York Yankees for the American League at 1305 in Bronx, New York and the New York Mets at the Washington Nationals for the National League at 1305 in Washington, D.C. I am going to focus on the first chart right now. The charts are similar, but the differences may tell the tale between the American League, broadly represented by the first chart and the National League, represented by the second.
I am very much a novice when it comes to event astrology, so I will approach these charts from a study perspective. I was a bit downcast thinking that my home-team Yankees would be represented by the first house, but I am seeing that the first house is me, the Yankees are the 10th and the Orioles are the 4th. With this in mind, the Yankees are represented by Mars in Taurus as domicile ruler and Sun in Aries as exaltation ruler. Mars isn’t really at home in Taurus, but fairs well in the 11th house. He does not see the affairs of the Aries 10th house. He is out of sect in a day chart. Mars is the associate triplicity ruler of Taurus. Mars in the 29th degree of Taurus is in the 12th part of Aries, which places him with the Sun in the 10th. He is mutually received by the Moon in Capricorn. All in all, I don’t hate Mars in Taurus here. I don’t see smooth sailing for the Yankees here, or for the American League, but the same rules could apply for the Nationals or the National League. There are no sho-ins here, but probably not any major upsets.
The Orioles are represented by the 4th house, as is any opposer to a favorite in either league. Venus rules the 4th and is in Pisces in the 9th. It is exalted, does not see the Libran 4th house, but this aversion is alleviated by antiscia. Venus is also out of sect in a day chart. Venus answers to a strong ruler, Jupiter in Sag. Both Venus and Jupiter are in cadent houses, so while strong by dignity, achieve only a little with respect to house placement. The exalted ruler of 4th house is Saturn in Capricorn. Saturn blights Moon in Cappy in her detriment, which mutually receives Mars (indicator of home teams). A diligent, disciplined opponent can wage a real challenge to any team who feels comfortable on its perch.
While I am typing this, the Yanks are spanking the Orioles 6-2. There is no doubt that Mars and the Sun are more actively competitive than Venus and Saturn. What may really tell the tale here is that both the 10th and the 4th have strong, in sect exaltation rulers: Sun in Aries and Saturn in Capricorn. Overall, again, I don’t see an obvious favorites here, other than to say that the Sun is culminating. Interestingly, the Yankees rank third in power rankings for MLB; the Orioles rank 30th, which is at the bottom of the barrel. The Nationals, on the other hand, rank 9th, while the Mets rank 14th. A true astrological study could/should probably be conducted by watching Mets baseball this year, being that they are right in the middle of the rankings. The Yanks are almost always 1st or 2nd in their division and high rankings in their league, so there would be a greater statistical variance.
It will be interesting to discover what, if anything, can be found astrologically when examining charts in this way. I will leave you with my favorite quote from Kevin Costner’s movie Bull Durham, a 1980s movie about minor league baseball, with a philosophical bent. Field of Dreams, another Costner baseball movie released in 1989, when Saturn, Uranus and Neptune where all impacting Costner’s Sun in Cappy, is by far a more superior, mystical, contemplative movie, and I would encourage anyone to watch it. But, I think Crash Davis’s snappy little monologue here really sums up life rather nicely:
Yeah, so if a guy dropped that lecture on me, I would internally chuckle a bit suspecting that he had practiced that in the mirror 10,000 times. Of course, this is an example of what one would say if the dialogues in our real lives matched the ones in our heads, or put on paper. I love a guy with a fully developed ethos, so props to the script writer here.
So the home team Yankees beat the Orioles decisively, 7-2. The opposing team Mets beat the Nationals, 2-0. We see that mixed bag of results indicative of the charts. The game of the day belongs to the Los Angeles Dodgers, who scored a record-breaking 8 home runs for their opening day effort. Not a huge difference here between this chart and the other two, although the 12 part of the Moon is in Cancer in the 1st and the 12th part of the AC is in Aries in the 10th. The Dodgers possess more angular momentum than either the Yankees or the Nationals. Hopefully, this will turn out to be a fruitful exercise and an exciting baseball season.
There is no doubt that Venus loves being in Pisces. She is at her best there, because she is exalted. Venus also loves occupying any feminine sign. She is the diurnal triplicity ruler of all Earth and Water sign placements. Venus in Pisces is loving and desirable. She is soft and flowing. She gives with no expectation of reciprocity. Venus in Pisces is long-suffering, which is a gift of the Christian Holy Spirit. You would think I have that placement, but mine is in Aries and that is a whole different ball of wax. Aries and Pisces are both considered lusty signs and are contra-antiscia to one another, so I appreciate where Venus in Pisces is coming from.
Furthermore, this site, House of Joy Astrology, has Venus in Pisces in the 5th house and was conceived during the night, so Venus was in sect. The 5th house is Venus’s house of joy, hence the name. All of these conditions are currently being experienced at the moment I write this post. (Sadly, there is no dapper dude hiding under my desk right now, in keeping with the pic above, but Pisces does have a vivid imagination😘.)The Venus of this site is very strong and Venus is strong right now. Being new to this sign, the current Venus is in the Pisces 12th part. House of Joy has Venus at 20 °16 Pisces, so her 12th part is Scorpio. Venus is not ecstatic to dwell in the sign of her opponent, Mars, but finds comfort and probably hot sex while dwelling in her own triplicity. Venus did engage in a rather scandalous affair with the God of War after all.
Lastly, Venus in Pisces answers to Jupiter in Sagittarius, because Jupiter rules Pisces and Jupiter in Sag is to the right of Pisces. Any aspect relationship between two planets expresses itself in a master/commander dynamic; the planet to the right being the master and commander of the planet to the left. There is no doubt that Sagittarius and Pisces share a tense relationship being square to one another, but full description of aspects and planetary relationships was greatly watered down during the modern age of astrology. Sag and Pisces are square to one another, but they share the same ruler. In this case, Jupiter in Sag and Venus in Pisces shed no tears in their dealings with one another. Venus is content to do Jupiter’s bidding. Let the good times roll.
Back to the House of Joy natal chart: I didn’t start this post with the intent of discussing her chart in depth, but I noticed that HOJA is also experiencing a Mercury return today. Mercury was in a mixed bag state then and in an even mixier, hyper-potent state today. I am going to break this down right now.
Mercury was at 16°49′ Pisces when HOJA was born and Mercury is at 16°11′ minutes Pisces at this moment. What can be said of Mercury in its 17th degree? Firstly, there is no more uncomfortable sign for Mercury to exist in than Pisces, because Mercury is both in its detriment and fall in Pisces. Mercury needs the precision of an Earth sign or the emotional detachment of an Air sign to function optimally. None of that is to be found in watery, Jupiterian Pisces.
This post and this site both have Mercury somewhere in the 17th degree of Pisces. Mercury from 15°00′ to 17°29′ is in the 12th part of Virgo, which conversely, Mercury loves. No other planet enjoys both domicile and exaltation status in one sign, other than Mercury in Virgo. In order to fully illustrate how beneficial Mercury in Virgo really is: Switzerland has both Sun and Mercury in Virgo. Switzerland is known for its watch-making, among other things. Now, there is a benefit to seeing the forest for the trees, particularly in the field of justice, which Mercury’s opposite, Jupiter oversees. There is also a benefit to emotional thinking, in terms of art and poetry. There is no benefit to abstraction or emotionalism when it comes to watch making or time telling or arrow shooting, where an excruciating attention to detail really counts. This is why Mercury is happy in Virgo and not in Pisces. It can do its fucking job. Interestingly, Mercurial precision actually does benefit music, art and philosophy, so it gives more than it receives.
HOJA’s chart contains a Mercury which was combust to the Sun. Probably, this is going to be a more art than science website, but there are other aims to strive for:) Mercury was in sect during HOJA’s birth and it is not at this moment. It will be tomorrow during the day. Mercury sect is derived not by its gender to diurnal/nocturnal relationship like other planets, because Mercury has no gender. Its relationship to the Sun and the Sun’s gender tells the tale.
Today’s Mercury is not combust, but is in doubly in phasis, because it is stationing to change direction and apply to forward motion. It is also in a Heliacal Rise phase, which means it has just made its appearance in the morning sky, after being overshadowed by the beams of the Sun.
Within the past couple of days, we have experience some odd, perplexing and continuously obfuscating news revelations here in the US. Jussie Smollett’s charges were dropped by the Chicago, DA. Probably appropriate, due to the witch hunt nature of the public reaction to his transgressions, which relates to a bigger picture of hyper-emotional reactions to social injustice and the exploitation of social injustice for personal gain. We have also witnessed the surprising revelation that Robert Mueller could not find collusion between Russia and President Trump with regards to election tampering. With that comes conservative crowing and liberal tears and double-downing, narrative bending.
Mercury is currently conjunct Neptune within minutes. We are truly existing in a quagmire of truth, lies, reality, fantasy, rationalism and emotionalism like nothing I have ever seen. Speaking of watches: did you scratch yours while simultaneously attempting to wind your butt lately? I did so hard that I gave myself a migraine:)
Those are the two big similarities between this moment and HOJA’s natal chart. One thing I can say is that my active foray into Hellenistic and Medieval Astrology has really made astrology and chart reading come alive for me. It I have touched on any concepts that seems unfamiliar, they likely spring from that time period. I was nearly ready to give up on astrology as a passion until I discovered Renaissance astrology in 2001, which lead me to the place I am now. It took me quite a while to really refine my passion in earnest, due to life, single motherhood (and I mean bringing another human being into adulthood almost entirely on my own), nursing school, nursing a terminally ill parent and a subsequent depression, presenting their obstacles.
I have more to say on today’s chart, but my bed and tomorrow’s day job beckon. Hopefully, I can provide an addendum to this post tomorrow night, while it is still relevant.
In the meantime, I created a Spotify playlist for the Venus in Pisces/Jupiter in Sag time period. There are only a couple of songs in it so far, but I am hoping to add more. The playlist is collaborative, so feel free to add to them, as long the tone relates to pleasure, love, joy and expansion.
Also, it keeping with Venus in Pisces/12th part Scorpio, may I recommend Anais Nin’s Delta of Venus, a collection of erotic tales?
I have had Mercury on my mind for the past couple of months. It is fitting that I share some tentative results of a project I am working on regarding Mercury while the planet itself is in its detriment and fall, and is also peregrine and combust and retrograde. What can I say? I enjoy a challenge. It probably helps that I mostly talking to myself at this point.
I have really been thinking of Mercury and all the other planets with regards to the topic of phasis. A planet can achieve phasis in two ways. A planets is in phasis 7 days before or after stationing retrograde or direct. And/or (because a planet can be in phasis for two reasons), a planet is in phasis 7 days before or after heliacal rise or set. A planet experiences heliacal set when it makes its last appearance in the morning sky before falling under the beams of the Sun. A planet achieves heliacal rise when it makes its first appearance in the night sky when pulling away from the beams of the Sun. When Mercury is retrograde, the appearance reverses: heliacal set occurs when Mercury makes its last appearance in the evening sky before falling into the beams; heliacal rise occurs when Mercury makes its first appearance in the morning sky before pulling away from the beams. This reversal likely occurs when Venus is retrograde as well.
It is important to note that some sources I have seen define phasis as relating solely to heliacal rise and set, but place relatively equal value to both the concept of station and heliacal rise and set. Delphic Oracle, the preeminent Hellenistic astrology program created by Curtis Manwaring, lumps them together. Semantics aside, we are basically headed in the same direction with respect to these concepts. A planet conveys a stronger, more convincing testimony when in phasis.
The problem with Mercury in phasis is the problem with Mercury retrograde: it happens a lot. A lot a lot. Mercury spends roughly three months in apparent retrograde motion. Mercury resides 15 degrees away from the Sun +/- 7 degrees for more than half of the year. In the year 2019, Mercury spends 203 days in phasis by heliacal rise, heliacal set OR station. Mercury spends 63 days in heliacal rise or set AND station in 2019. In this respect, Mercury in phasis by heliacal rise or set is likely to be as meaningful as when the Moon rises and sets into the Sun during its New Moon phase. We might say Mercury basically divides us all up into two camps, kind of like the right brain/left brain argument. It is unlikely to indicate prominence or more compelling Mercurial testimony.
I will concede that Mercury station is probably significant with respects to chart delineation, and I would even extend signifigance to the overlap between Mercurial station and rise/set. To put the concept of rise and set into further perspective Venus, Mars, Jupiter and Saturn each experience heliacal rise and set once this calendar year, a comparative rarity.
I am attaching the notes and dates for this project below. The second attachment is just my way of trying to understand exactly where Mercury is in relation to the Sun throughout his back and forth motions. These two documents where initially generated from Delphic Oracle with heavy notations from me. Delphic Oracle can be a pain, but it is truly a powerful, instructional program when you get the hang of it.
For some insight into the relevance of phasis, Ted Bundy was born with 4 planets in phasis: Saturn, Jupiter, Venus and Mercury (and yes, his Mercury was in phasis two ways). Most of us are born with maybe a planets or two in the phasis, at the most. Ted Bundy’s chart was truly exceptional. He had so much going on, that he was in celestial overdrive. He was basically like a force of nature. I hope to get the time to delineate his chart in an article.
If you find any errors in my process or in these charts, be kind with your criticism. I would blame the current debilitated Mercury, but I have been baking this potato for awhile. Thanks. And enjoy.
February 22, 2019 marked what would have been the 57th birthday of one of the most beloved international figures of the late 20th and early 21st centuries, wild life conservationalist and enthusiast, Steve Irwin. There are very few people who have successfully withstood public and historical scrutiny. Steve Irwin was one of those rare people. When PETA, the ever inflammatory personality disorder masquerading as an animal rights group took to the interwebs to denounce Steve on the anniversary of his birth, they were summarily and correctly dismissed. The modern age suffers from a distinct lack of heroes. Messing with Steve is like messing with Mr. Rogers or Bob Ross or my Momma. Don’t go there unless you want to fight millions and millions of people (Or in the case of my Momma, you will be fighting me, Ms. Moon in Aries, which will be like provoking the fury of one million people. I wouldn’t do it. You have been warned, fool.)
As an astrologer, I love it when an astrological chart so clearly and poignantly (and painfully) paints the portrait that was or is a particular individual. Steve’s chart could belong to no one other than him. Before I dive headlong into my analysis, I want to point out a couple of unique features in Steve’s chart. For one thing, Steve was a citizen of Australia and his chart contains heavy links to the nation of Australia. Steve’s Saturn conjuncts Australia’s Sun, Australia’s Saturn is also in Aquarius, and both Steve and the Australian national chart feature Moon in Virgo and Venus in Pisces. From an American standpoint, Steve embodied Australian-ness: he was open, fun, passionate and a little crazy in all the ways you would enjoy. He was also the penultimate champion of Australian wildlife. We all know that Australia was God’s zoologic testing ground, so championing a whole bunch of scary and quixotic creatures was no small feat. Steve didn’t spend much time wrestling fluffy bunnies after all.
Another unique area of discussion was the overall timing of Steve’s birth. On February 5, 1962, all seven classical planets (Sun, Moon, Mercury, Venus, Mars, Jupiter and Saturn or Saturn, Jupiter, Mars, Sun, Venus Mercury and Moon if you are trying to memorize the Chaldean Order of Planets for a certification lesson) were aligned in the sign of Aquarius, the Water Bearer. As an aside for another discussion, the occurrence of this alignment may be why people erroneously associate the 1960s with the dawning of the Age of Aquarius. We can know that we have not entered the Age of Aquarius because when we align our tropical zodiac wheel against the sidereal zodiac, we find that they are roughly 24 degrees apart. Simply put, we are sitting at approximately 6 degrees Pisces and continuing to tick back. Better tropical astrologers than I will ever be have explained the differences between the two zodiacs, why they are both legitimate, and why tropical may be more appropriate for our various quests as earthlings (think the “unchanging” cycles of our orbit around our star and the progression of the resulting seasons on this planet), so I won’t reinvent the wheel here.
I will say that this grouping of planets in Aquarius sets the tone for times ahead. We have only witnessed the grouping of all classic heavenly bodies in one sign during the course of this Biblical generation (70 years) twice: in 1962 and in May 2000, when all the same planets joined together in Taurus. If you were circumnavigating the astrology community sphere in 2000, you know how big of a deal the Great Taurus Conjunction was. When I see people ohh and ahh over various mundane planetary configuration, I think to myself, “dude, do you even mega-conjunct?” or “are there 10000 astronomical bodies occupying one sign right now?” Back all the way up with your Jupiter conjunct Saturn conjunct Pluto nonsense.
So, what does that mean for Steve? For one thing, as Steve very much represented or embodied the nation of Australia, he also embodied the time period he was born in and the time period in which he lived. He was an animal preservationalist and advocate way before it was cool. He was the ultimate crocodile hipster and he was more authentic and awesome than a hipster ever could be. In that sense, he also embodies a mini-Aquarius era; he was a true humanitarian for animals and he was not overly driven by was reputation or social standing. He may have had his zoo or his nation in mind when promoting his advocacy, but he would have likely been working at his zoo and wrangling crocodiles even if a camera never filmed him. Additionally, he has a legacy which extends beyond his life and progeny.
So enough broad stokes about Steve, his country or the time period in which he lived except for this: the May 2000 Taurus conjunction lacked an important element which the 1962 Aquarius conjunction contained (and I am not talking about the difference between a time period being driven by a domicile-ruling malefic Saturn in Aquarius versus a domicile-ruling benefic Venus in Taurus). The Aquarian conjunction of 1962 occurred during eclipse season, so in essence, we see a perfect confluence of astrological events.
What I am leading to with this post is a focus on lunar nodes and eclipses. Eclipses have always been in vogue, as they are difficult to miss. Even if an eclipse manifests over the Arctic Ocean, which few living souls are likely to see live, we are still hyper-aware of it. With respect to nodes: in truthfulness to my status as a intermediate/nearly advanced western astrology practitioner, I will confess that my knowledge of how lunar nodes function is elementary at best. Vedic (Hindu, sidereal astrologers) have devoted more of their attention to this phenomena over the course of ages. In my own personal observation and practice, I see enormous relevance and emphasis on nodal action particularly as it relates to solar and lunar eclipses, more so than any other time.
A quick and dirty way you can tell if the chart you are examining falls during an eclipse season is this: if the North or South Node falls close to the Sun, you are in eclipse season. You don’t have to be in the same sign, but if the Node is close to the Sun even in an adjacent sign, you are in eclipse season. A jump over to timeanddate.com will confirm this for you. A total solar eclipse occurred in 1962 in conjunction with the Great Aquarius Conjunction in February 4/5 (gasp, wow, yeah, fucking big deal) and a lunar eclipse occurred on February 19th, a couple of days before Steve Irwin was born. For further emphasis, the Great Taurus Conjunction did not transpire anywhere near eclipse season. (I am finding eclipse season charts all over the place of people or events which are shocking and unique. Ted Bundy was born within 24 hours of a solar eclipse in Sagittarius in 1946 (among other amazing astronomical findings). The Chernobyl nuclear Disaster of 1986 occurred within hours of a lunar eclipse involving the Scorpio/Taurus. More on those charts later and soon, as in next on the docket soon.)
On a more personal note, Steve was born with Ascendant in Capricorn. In modern terms, Sun sign placements are king: Steve was born with Sun in Pisces. As difficult as it may be to reconcile Steve with unassuming, gentle Pisces, it is even more difficult to reconcile him with stern, melancholic, foreboding Capricorn. The ascendant represents the absolute front-door to the soul in classical astrology. In the case of Steve, classical astrology is not wrong, but Aquarius overrides and overshadows Capricorn: Steve retained four Aquarian planets from the 1962 conjunction: Saturn, Mercury, Mars and Jupiter. These four planets dictate the affairs of 8 out of 12 houses in Steve’s chart and represent a true modern stellium (a grouping of three or more planets in one sign, minus the Sun and Moon.) Capricorn does not see Aquarius, because they are adjacent signs, but his aversion to Aquarius is ameliorated, because Capricorn and Aquarius share a ruling planet: Saturn.
Steve’s Capricornian Ascendant tells us quite a bit about him beyond the obvious. Saturn is the domicile ruler of Capricorn and Mars is the exalted ruler. Both are in Aquarius. We see how Aquarius Saturn manifested in Steve’s basic personality, and we see why that did not necessarily clash with Capricorn. When we move past that, we discover more about the Steve we all knew and loved. Moon in Virgo is the triplicity ruler of Capricorn at night (Steve was born at night). The Moon is the sect ruler of a night chart and she is placed in the 9th house, but she is advancing and culminating, ie she is approaching the MC, the highest point of the chart, and one of four chart angles. Steve was a highly lunar individual. He was charismatic and engaging as a person who loved, served and nurtured other living things. His Moon was approaching the MC, so he made his living being a lunar person. Virgo enjoys the same night-time triplicity ruler as Capricorn, both being of the Earth element, so the Moon enjoys her own dignity in Virgo. She is comfortable there and functions well. Steve was successful in matters of career and public image. The MC was in the 9th whole sign house, so Steve’s career was as much of a spiritual calling as a professional one. Moon in Virgo ruled the 7th house of partnerships and marriage. Steve enjoyed a long-term, stable, loving marriage with this wife, Terri, who is a Sun sign Cancerian, and who remains loyal to him in death.
The another night-time sect ruler of Steve’s ascendant in Capricorn is Venus in Pisces. Venus loves being in Pisces; she is exalted here. An aside about Venus in Pisces: one of the best books on basic modern astrology I have found was written was by Debbie Kemptom-Smith, called Secrets from a Stagazer’s Notebook. Debbie’s book had all the class and sass of any Linda Goodman book, and Debbie was likewise an Aries (with an Aries Moon.) The chief difference between her book and Linda’s was that you could leave her book with the ability to perform basic chart delineation. Debbie was an astrologer we lost in 2018, but conducted her practice rather quietly in comparison to Rob Schmidt and Donna Van Toen. Debbie published her book in 1982 and low-key predicted the AIDS crisis with her description of Pluto in Scorpio. As it relates to the topic at hand, Debbie also said (and I am paraphrasing) that the Venus in Pisces native will love you unconditionally even if you look like an iguana. Venus in Pisces perceives value beyond what is obviously beautiful and sees to the core of what is truly beautiful. Debbie did not write that with Steve in mind, but what better way to describe a man who taught us to see beauty in ugly animals? Steve’s Venus is similarly in the cadent third house, but directly conjunct the IC, the angle opposing the MC. Steve incorporated these two opposing signs rather seamlessly in his life, connecting and maximizing issues of love through service. Venus ruled his 5th and 10th houses. Steve left behind two accomplished and creative children and Steve enjoyed tremendous success in his chosen profession, 5th and 10th house affair respectively.
The participating triplicity ruler for Capricorn ascendant is Mars. Mars exerts added influence over Steve’s personality, as both exalted ruler and triplicity ruler. Steve was, more than anything, a man of action and adventure. He was fearless when dealing with dangerous and venomous creatures, and rather unphased if they bit him or lashed out at him. Mars rules the 4th house of home and ancestry. The 12th parts of the Sun and Saturn are there. Steve was born into the world of animal conservation: both of his parents worked in that field and opened the family zoo in 1970. Everything in Steve’s life directly relates to this legacy: his career, his marriage, his fame and his death. Mars gives way to a powerful Saturn in Aquarius, as do all his other Aquarian planets, because it is in an earlier degree than the others. Saturn was set to rise first out of this grouping first.
Jupiter is the face or decan ruler of the first 10 degrees of Capricorn. Jupiter is not highly active in comparison to the most of the other planets in being placed in the 2nd house with three other planets that share this house and come before him. Jupiter also rules the cadent 12th and 3rd houses, also houses of even less activity. I will point out that the 12th part for Steve’s Jupiter is in Scorpio, which is the domicile of Steve’s 11th house. Steve enjoyed an unprecedented amount of passionate love and loyalty from his broader network of friends and associates, including his fans. Steve was filming an educational segment about sting-rays for his daughter when he died unexpectedly from a sting ray barb. To my knowledge, no one in possession of those films ever released them to the public, which is an astounding act of love and loyalty in a world so devoid of it.
I am detailing the portions of dignity here a bit out-of-order here, because we are beginning to move away from Steve as a man and closer to issues surrounding his death. Steve’s bound ruler was Mercury in Aquarius, the third Aquarian planet called to describe affairs related to the ascendant. Mercury ruled the 6th and 9th houses and the MC in Steve’s chart. Besides the nurturing aspect of Moon on the MC, Mercury ruled Virgo on the MC highlights the role of instructor and communicator and in Steve’s case, television commentator. Mercury gifts Steve abundantly, but there is a dark side to Mercury here, as it is besieged between Saturn and Mars, two malefics. Mercury is beseiged by being so closely conjoined to these badies, and fulfills the classic definition of besiegement, by creating no aspects to any other planets while moving from the conjunction of Saturn to the conjunction with Mars.
Mercury rules the 6th house of health. As far as I know, Steve was a healthy man until his sudden passing. Mercury in a fixed sign promotes a state of being for a long time, so a fixed sign ruling health matters will either indicate long-term, overall wellness or chronic illness depending on the person. Mercury was bolstered by Saturn in Aquarius, whose function was optimal. On an unseen level, Mercury rules Pluto in Virgo. It is folly in my opinion to ignore the outers, and I apply them as fixed stars when I examine them in a chart. An outer planet would therefore have to make a partile conjunction to another planet or an angle to be considered active. Pluto sits directly on the MC. Pluto is the most culminating astrological body in Steve’s chart. Steve’s death can be related to Mercury ruled Pluto and it was a public event. Modern astrologers tend to look at Pluto as a higher octave of Mars, but I would actually tie Pluto closer to Mercury. Pluto is amoral and removed. He is as far from the Sun as Mercury is close. He is actually a binary dwarf planetary system, which pays direct symbolic homage to Mercury.
The one classic planet that does not govern any affairs of the ascendant is the Sun. The Sun sits in the cadent 3rd house, and is moving away from the IC. The Sun is out sect and peregrine. He does describe the affairs related to the Leo 8th house, the “do nothing” house of death. The Sun also does not see any of the Aquarian planets, because they are adjacent to him. There are no factors alleviating his aversion to those planets or them to him. He does communicate with Venus by sharing a house with her and it interacts with the Ascendant. The Moon in Virgo is moving away from an opposition with the Sun, where she was blighted by him during a penumbral lunar eclipse. ultimately, the Sun does not really do much for Steve except cause trouble and provide him with inadequate protection with reference to the 8th house. The Sun can’t do anything to protect Steve from his dance with fateful Saturn.
One thing I alluded to earlier, but conspicuously left out of this reading to this point is the positions of the lunar nodes. The lunar nodes represent the two points where the Moon crosses over the ecliptic, which is the Sun’s revolutionary path. The North Node signifies the point where the Moon crosses over the ecliptic line and enters the northern hemisphere. The South Node signifies the opposite. Eclipses occur when the luminaries align closely with the Nodes. Steve Irwin was born just after an eclipse cycle in 1962. The North Node was at 18 degrees Leo, in Steve’s 8th house and the South Node was contained between Mars and Jupiter in the Aquarian 2nd house. Being in the 7th house from the 2nd, where much of Steve’s life projects from, the North Node is an open enemy to all of Steve’s planet in Aquarius. Western astrologers do not consider Nodes to be active bodies which cast rays, but Vedic astrologers treat the Nodes as actual planets. With this in mind, the North Node is able to perform directly against Saturn, Mercury, Mars, and Jupiter here, but he requires some assistance, which he does receive,
On the day of Steve’s untimely, shocking passing, Saturn was in Leo at 18 degrees, directly transiting the natal North Node and opposing all of Steve’s Aquarian planets. Steve had experienced a previous Saturn half return during the 1970s, specifically during the Summer of 1977. I would be interested to read a real biography of Steve to discover how that time period unfolded for him. The information on Wikipedia is pretty sketch. I will say that Saturn did not directly conjoin Steve’s North Node during eclipse season in 1977, but it did in 2006. Steve was born 3 days after a lunar eclipse and he died four days before a lunar eclipse. On the day of his death, Sun in Virgo was opposing Uranus in Pisces, both of which straddled Steve’s MC/IC axis. The Moon would enter Pisces several days later. It would be almost impossible not to view the activities of the Nodes and their relation to the luminaries are being highly reflective of the timing of Steve Irwin’s death.
There are a number of different predictive techniques one can employ to study the progression of a person’s life and there are specific techniques one can investigate as it relates to the death of a native. I am not going to describe them now, because this has already turned out to be an epic journey. When I had it in my mind to study Steve’s chart, I actually thought this would be more of a mini-reading. The more I looked at Steve’s chart the more it really bloomed like a rose. Studying the chart of a such a fascinating, giving and engaging human being is hardly a trial, but I commend you if you made it to the end of this reading. The study of death in astrology as it relates to questions like, “when will I die” or “how will I die?” is highly controversial. A modern astrologer would tell you it can’t be done. Sometimes, I think we get “can I” mixed up with “should I”. “Can I” is an objective question. “Should I” is subjective. There are times when knowing trigger points in a natal chart or its progression can be valuable, although I am not certain one could avoid one’s fate even when armed with certain knowledge. One of the most Piscean things about Steve was that he expressed to his wife that he did not think he would have a long life. In this 21st century pursuit of relentless, intoxicating, blinding positivity, we ignore darker themes at our own peril and are ill-equipped to deal with pain, death and tragedy when it arises. Ignoring issues like death only serve to cause us more suffering, although I do think the issue should be addressed sensitively and gently. I hope I have done that here.
The talk of the astrological town as it were, and the seminal astrological event of 2018, besides the entrance of Saturn in Capricorn, is the apparent retrograde motion of Mars through the first decan of Aquarius and into the last decan of Capricorn. Mars has been slowing down for quite some time, stationed today at 6:04 am EDT, and finally began his about-face at 5:04 pm EDT. We can say that a Saturn ingress is big news, as are Cardinal sign ingresses, and lunar phase charts, and of course, they are. They dominate the thoughts and conversations of even non-astrologers on a frequent basis. But Mars retrograde in Aquarius is kind of a big deal.
For whatever reason, most likely related to larger centurial or millennial cycles I have yet to study, Mars does not retrograde back through Aquarius often. The last time he did so was in 1971. Elon Musk was born twelve days before the last station of Mars in Aquarius at nearly 22 degrees. There is no birth time listed for Mr. Musk, but it would not surprise me a bit if Mars figures prominently in his chart, for he really is the embodiment of Mars in Aquarius: visionary, eccentric, and given to practical foreward thinking. One may not associate the word practical with Aquarius, but we bring Aquarius into proper focus when we acknowledge Saturn as the true ruler of that sign.
The correction of rulership is what first attracted me to Traditional Astrology, and it is my opinion that Aquarius suffers most in description and execution by having a new ruler foisted upon it. Uranus ruled Aquarius is revolutionary, hyper-liberal, iconoclastic, and shocking. In order to accommodate that narrative, we must first contemplate that Saturn is not those things. Yes, Saturn does rule limits, and conservatism, but Saturn also seeks to subvert the natural order by opposing the lights, the Sun and the Moon, who rule Leo and Cancer respectively. Leo and Cancer are the King and Queen; they are Daddy and Mommy; they are the basis of the structures of family, town, society and nation. Saturn opposes them in Capricorn and Aquarius in the shadows at the end of our seen galaxy. Saturn does this, because he recognizes in a very essential, radical way, that the status quo cannot survive without subversion and challenge. Saturn does this because he knows that lights cannot shine without a dark palette to provide contrast. The traditional ruler of astrology and the occult is Saturn after all.
Furthermore, to suggest that Aquarius is anything but conservative, particularly monetarily, is actually rather amusing. Check out this list of names: Ronald Reagan, Jeb Bush, Sarah Palin, Katie Hopkins, Glenn Beck, Rush Limbaugh, Alex Jones. These people are all high profile conservatives and all Sun-sign Aquarians. If anything, when politics and entertainment collide, Aquarius is predicatably counter-culture, just not in a way that makes people who call themselves counter-culture feel good. The entertainment industry, a Leonine endeavor, trends heavily liberal. Politically, if you study the charts of folks who trend left, at times, hard left, you will find Taurus (of all things) and Leo much more prominently featured. Aquarius offers the response, and sometimes, he shocks and appalls us. Sadly, we are so painfully polarized at this moment, that there is no real conversation happening on the global stage. (And no, I don’t support immigrant children being taken from their parents. If ever I extol the virtues of a politcal philosophy, it is never to that point. Hardcore party-liners on both sides of the political aisle are the monsters to me. People who refuse to question allow atrocities to happen. There is no excuse for that. Please do not infer that I approve of such travesties.)
Back to here and now and then: when I meditate on Mars retrograding through the unfamiliar waters of the Water-bearer, it brings to mind the ancient Greek Titan, Prometheus. According to the myths of old, Prometheus created mankind out of clay, and provided us with fire, because he saw that we were unfit to figure out how to survive without celestial guidance. The gift of fire came with severe consequences for our compassionate champion. A primary theme of Greek mythology is the general Olympian disdain for humanity. Zeus, the chief Olympian, punished Prometheus for his aid by binding him to a rock, and setting an eagle on Prometheus daily to peck at his liver, which was considered the house of emotions during Greek times. Interestingly enough, several entities who sought to provide humanity with any sort of accelerated advantage are considered enemies of God or enemies of divinity and celestial order: think Enki or the angels who taught Enoch about agriculture and astrology/astronomy. The true nature and story of Saturn asserts himself here again.
With Mars in Aquarius travelling backwards this summer, we are forced to contemplate Prometheus bound to that rock, and being punished, basically for being a benevolent proponent of humanity. But was he really, or was he simply giving us more information than we can handle? At any rate, that push-pull is what defines our spiritual essence in the universe, and again, neither can exist without the other. It does not seem like much of a coincidence to me that Mars and Saturn are both retrograding through Saturn’s home signs during the summer in a face-off with the lights. Tomorrow, Saturn will join with the Moon in Capricorn in opposing the Sun. The Moon would rather be anywhere than Capricorn, particularly while being so clearly outmatched by Saturn in his domicile. Later, Mars will engage the Moon and the South Node in opposing Sun in Leo, which will mark a total eclipse of the Moon. Saturn is the clear victor this Summer, and Mars in Aquarius is his weak proxy. Sun in Leo is a worthy opponent, but ultimately, this looks to be an uncomfortable Summer in general.
Of note: Mars is also perihilon to the Sun, which means that he is closest to the Sun in his elliptical orbit, and therefore bright in the sky. He will increase in brightness throughout the summer, and will remain in a perihilon state until September. If you live in my neck of the world, and go view the sky around midnight, you will see Mars rising in vivid, rubescent brilliance. He is so bright, in fact, that he will surpass Jupiter in brightness later this summer. And this, my friends, is the the root of astrology and astronomical observation. Thousands of years ago, our ancestors sat by the fire at night, and told stories and gazed into the night sky. They would have undoubtedly noted the intensity of the reflective light of Mars, and correlated it with events going on around them. Again, we join the link between the past, present and future. This summer really does belong to Saturn, Lord of Time.
Here is the chart for Mars retrograde for my area. I can’t spend much time on this chart, because this article went in directions I did not intend. Venus is the big winner here, as she is high in the sky, and Mars takes orders from her, being in both her bounds and face. Venus opposes Mars and confers no benefit back to him. Venus also enjoys some dignity of her own by being mutually received by the Sun by triplicity (see note 1). Venus is not of her own sect, but outshines the planets that are in sect. She is also the hour ruler. All in all, Venus presides over a rather dull party, one without good tunes, and one where the bartender waters down all the drinks. (Jupiter has not been game for a good party in a long time, being retrograde in Scorpio. Saturn is retrograde in the cadent third. He is stuck at school writing, “I will not be a sour-puss” on the chalk board one hundred times. The Moon is reluctantly dragging herself closer and closer to her inevitable pairing with old sour-puss himself.)
Note 1: No, I do not agree that planets must behold each other in order to mutually receive one another. Dignity is dignity, and aspects are aspects. They do not depend on one another to exist. More to the point, mutual reception achieves something important in many cases, by preventing planets from existing in a peregrine state. If we view a peregrine planet as a “stranger in a strange land”, then we can appreicate how comparatively rare peregrinity is. It is rare to be dropped into a location not speaking the language, having no currency, or even clothes, like a character from the Terminator. In life, we almost always have allies, even if our own birthrite is an allegiance.
The featured image for this article is a sculpture created by Nicolas Sebastien Adam in 1760, and is one of the marvels to be found at the Louvre.