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Posts from the ‘2019’ Category

11
Nov

Transit of Mercury 2019

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.

Mercury-orbit-nodes

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.

Mercury Cazimi Occult

(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.

Last transit of Mercury until 2032

https://www.timeanddate.com/eclipse/in/@4157427

http://www.saintjohnslodge21.ca/tag/marriage-of-mercury-and-philosophy/

http://www.true-node.com/eph1/?inputNumber=Mercury%2C+Venus%2C+Mars%2C+Moon%2C+Jupiter%2C+saturn&day=1&month=11&year=2019&time=00%3A00%3A00&zone=GMT+0&interval_num=1&interval=day&lines=31&calendar=Gregorian&zodiac=Tropical&origin=Geocentric&lighttime=Apparent&clock=Universal+Time&zodsec=D%B0M&nnode=on&.submit=Get+Ephemeris

11
Jun

01:23:40 Meltdown: The Astrology of Chernobyl: Part One

 

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.

1986 Chernobyl Disaster

 

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.

1024px-Chornobyl,_Ukraine_(Unsplash)

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.

Chornobyl_DSC_0489_44

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:)

26
Feb

Around the World and Back Again: Steve Irwin

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.

Steve Irwin

 

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.