The year ahead promises to be more exciting than most as outer planets line up to bring preliminary fireworks, where we can expect and even bigger show in 2010. The big players in 2009 are the Saturn/Uranus opposition, which as Barack Obama intimated, is to bring “change we can believe in”. The first opposition took place exactly on the US election, and two more follow: on February 5th at 20.37 Virgo/Pisces and September 15th, 2009, at 24.43 Virgo/Pisces. Seen from a sun sign viewpoint, this will be a very major influence for Aquarians in regard to their economy, emotional life and security. Capricorns are also likely to experience this opposition as a period of seismic change, especially in connection with their convictions and beliefs and in relation to travel and education. But of course Virgos and Pisces will profoundly feel the pull of this opposition in relationships, as they strive to bridge a gap that seems intercontinental in expanse.Secondly Jupiter conjoins Neptune three times, on May 27th, July 10th and 21st December at 26.28, 26.02 and 24.18 Aquarius respectively, and clearly this conjunction will evoke a wave of popular sentiment, whether euphoria or disappointment is difficult to say. Each time Chiron is also involved, so there might me an element of suffering, or a whole lot of healing. Again Aquarians will be profoundly affected – it is going to be quite a year for this sign – and there will be an enormous expansion of influence for them on a collective level and in relation to dreams and their spiritual life.
As Jupiter and Neptune are considered rulers of Pisces, this sign will also experience deep changes in relation to inner life, dreams and meditative experiences. It can be a time of inner chaos bit amazing spiritual growth. For Sagittarians, ruled by Jupiter, this conjunction falls in their solar third house, which is sure to bring enhanced curiosity and motivation to learn about artistic and spiritual subjects, as well as some pretty exotic travels. By airship or balloon probably.
By the beginning of 2009 Pluto has moved back into Capricorn, where it will remain for the next 14 years. In sun sign and horary astrology this means that every time a planet enters one of the cardinal signs – Aries, Cancer, Libra or Capricorn – they will undergo an intense process of crisis and transformation. This is particularly noticeable when Venus moves into Aries, because it repeats an 8 year cycle of retrograde movement, moving retrograde at 15.26 Aries on March 6th and squaring Pluto on February 6th, April 3rd and May 2nd at 2.26, 3.18 and 3.06 Aries respectively. Exciting times for Libra where this takes place in the 7th house of partnerships… not least because Venus is joined by Mars in May. A rather passionate time. Of course Aries will also be profoundly affected by this constellation too.
For the Mercury ruled – Geminis and Virgos – the triple conjunction of Mercury and Jupiter in January and February should bring amazing results intellectually and socially, and this will be a good time for relationships – of a liberated sort – too. The retrograde period in May and June in Taurus squares the Jupiter/Chiron/Neptune triple conjunction, which can lead to some dodgy judgments, not least economically. The Mars ruled can await the retrograde movement of this planets in Leo in December. Quite romantic, especially for Aries.
Finally the solar eclipse falls at 6 Aquarius in February and 29 Cancer in July, whilst the lunar eclipses fall at 20 Leo in February and 13 Aquarius in August, which will affect all twelve signs in different ways, though Cancer and Leo tend to be the most sensitive.
The following, then is an analysis of the general influence on the 12 signs in 2009. It is worth remembering that you may be sensitive to any or all of these influences in one way or another, because a particular planet may be strong or activated in the coming year, or because of your Ascending sign, so it could be beneficial to read all signs, and if something strikes a chord then read it closely.
The year starts with your ruler Mars in Capricorn and conjoining Pluto, suggesting both a crisis and a breakthrough in your career. With Pluto in the career area of your solar chart until 2023, you can expect a number of upheavals, but in this early stage these is liable to be an acute confrontation with autocratic leaders. A career transformation brings you much more power and control. April is a time when the old makes way for the new in relation to work and colleagues, but it is also a time when you have a strong desire to experiment with your life and find deeper spiritual meaning. A new intense relationship, or even a love affair, may take place at this time. Certainly, when Venus conjoins Mars in your sign as May begins, squaring Pluto, there will be a crisis and transformation in your personal life… the passion is red hot. Life gets very interesting towards the end of the year when Mars enters Leo, where it will be from October 16th 2009 to June 7th 2010. As this relates to children and love, as well as creative projects where you put your identity on the line, you can expect to have a happy and romantic period at this time, and if you are looking for children, they will surely come along.
With the Jupiter/Neptune conjunction (together with Chiron) taking place in your solar 10th house of the career throughout 2009, you can expect major developments in this area. You have lofty dreams and get involved with large social or artistic movements, the professional expression of spirituality and healing, or visionary international projects. For someone who is normally very grounded, this is in fact a time when you surround yourself with dreamers, which will not always be comfortable or safe economically. You are gripped with idealistic fever in April, but during the course of May you can feel under strong psychological pressure, especially if you happen to get involved with a secret passionate relationship at this time. This is also a time when ideological passions run high and can put you under threat. Socially 2009 is a time of change as you build a bridge from the old to the new. Children can be an extraordinary responsibility during the year, either traveling far, or making changes which are difficult for you to adjust to.
The Saturn/Uranus opposition is turning many things in connection with your family and your career upside down. This is a time when a need for change in your professional life affects the domestic status quo and somehow you have to juggle the needs of the family with professional realities. You may need to move or change job, and there highest stress factors are at the end of April when a whole lot of unpredictable changes happen in the leadership – though it is an exciting opportunity for change. August to October is also a period when there are a variety of demanding issues that need to be addressed and cannot be solved without hard work and organization. This is also a year when international travel in on the cards, preferably to an exotic destination, an island, a ship or somewhere by the sea. This is a magnificent period for expanding your awareness of alternative subjects like astrology, healing etc. and for making contact with international groups with a humanitarian or spiritual agenda.
With Pluto firmly in your 7th house of relationships until 2023 this is a time when you need to address the power balance between you and others. You need to give up control on the one hand, yet maintain your personal power on the other. There will be periods of the year when these issues are acute, particularly around the New Year when you may find yourself under attack from a particularly implacable person. Also the period at the beginning of May shows similar power battles, though this is more likely to be connected with career issues. These are basically times when you need to harden your resolve and overcome anxiety in taking new professional initiatives. There are major developments in connection with abroad through the whole of 2009, and you can build a bridge to strong professional organizations working hard to bring change. The end of April is remarkable in this respect and can bring some exotic journey. Financially you can be very fortunate getting finance, but don’t let your dreams get the better of you, especially at the end of January. All in all this will prove to be an exciting year, when your horizons expand considerably.Leo
This is a year in your life when you continue to build up a solid defense against insecure economic trends that threaten to destabilize your good efforts to consolidate your economy. In a way you are torn between dangerous gambles and the path of safety, and this is especially apparent in the Spring. With eclipses falling in your sign this year, there is also an emphasis on making deep-seated changes both in your personal life and lifestyle, and in relationships. And with the triple conjunction of Jupiter, Chiron and Neptune falling in your solar 7th house of partnerships, it is in this area that the most extraordinary changes take place. For many years now, relationships have tended to be fluid and a little chaotic, but in 2009 many dreams are activated. You tie your hopes to a hot-air balloon that can take you to magical places, but who knows where it will put you down? At work there is continued restructuring, and this becomes extremely intense in early May. Intense differences of opinion at this time can bring a general clear out in the work environment with new colleagues replacing old.
2009 is a year of extraordinary developments in your working life, perhaps because of a new influx of colleagues, or perhaps because the area you work with is much more creative or idealistic. This is a good year to work with large groups, with advertising and with idealistic projects. However it is also a time of chaos, or you are torn between letting go or keeping your feet firmly on the ground, particularly at the end of May when there is a risk of bad judgment. With Saturn in your first house and in opposition to Uranus in the house of partnership, there are enormous adjustments to be made in relationships. You may as well resign yourself to a year of change and unpredictability, which becomes particularly acute in March and April. If you fall for someone at this time, you can expect quite a roller-coaster ride. The months from August to October are also significant in this respect as you try to create order, instead of allowing things to continue in an unstructured way. This is a good time to organize supporters to get your own agenda through even if other people are dreamy or unreliable.
With the election of Barack Obama in November, Change has come to the world, and it is as if the euphoric effect of the coming triple conjunction of Jupiter and Neptune in Aquarius close to the USA Moon can already be felt. In this second article on sun sign influence for 2009, we will be taking a closer look at the last six signs. In this respect the Jupiter/Neptune conjunction is going to be extremely important for Pisces and Sagittarius, whilst the Saturn/Uranus opposition will profoundly affect Capricorn and Aquarius.
Starting with Libra and Scorpio, it is the condition of Venus and Mars that needs to be studied. Libra is particularly marked by the fact that Pluto has moved into cardinal Capricorn and therefore affects Libra’s solar 4th house. And as Pluto is traditionally associated with Scorpio, its move into a new sign is likely to have a deep affect, especially in areas connected with education and communication:
This will prove to be an extraordinary springtime for you in just that area you are most attuned to – relationships. At the beginning of February, Venus leaves Pisces, entering Aries and a kind of time loop that will not be over before the end of May. In these months Venus goes retrograde and direct again squaring Pluto three times, and thereby knitting together the two domains of relationships and family. Acute issues need to be resolved at this time, and as Venus is in “exile” in Aries, you will find yourself in a compromised situation in relationships, and a situation that requires decisive action too. The home is subject to some upheaval that may be connected to a renovation, or because of new relationship developments. You will not be afraid of taking drastic action for the sake of partnership, though whether this is wise is another matter. Amazingly the retrograde movement of Venus allows the much slower moving Mars to catch her up, and this happens at 29 degrees Pisces just after Mars has passed over Uranus. A fizzy brew! Therefore the single Libra will be swept off his or her feet at this time by a person who has just been through some revolutionary change. Everything will be turned on its head as both planets square Pluto around the end of April. Venus spends the rest of May and June “catching up” with Mars, and they conjoin once more at 14 degrees Taurus on June 21st. This time you are in control, but as they both move together to square the momentous Jupiter/Neptune/Chiron conjunction, you are likely to be struggling with a raging torrent of feelings prompted by strong desires. Whew!
The year starts with a Mars/Pluto conjunction, so you are feeling empowered, ambitious and strongly motivated to learn and explore in January, not least around the 24th when Mars trines Saturn, which is an excellent time for commitment to a group. As mentioned in the Libra section, Mars goes on to conjoin both Uranus and Venus in April in Scorpio’s solar 5th house. This is an excellent time for love and romance, and a brilliant time for matters connected with children too. But whatever happens, it is likely to be quite a surprise. When Mars and Venus foxtrot together into Aries to square Pluto, there will be upheavals and power play at work. Scorpios will be implacable and fully in control at this time. Just as Mars and Venus enter Aries together, they also enter Taurus within a few days of each other. Relationships are like glue at this time, and lovers cannot leave each other. But the sojourn in Taurus in June and July is a situation when you are very much dependant on partners, and the simultaneous square to the precise Jupiter/Neptune/Chiron conjunction around July 6th is a chaotic time in relationships – and for the family environment too. It will be quite a year for Scorpios, and it gets more interesting in December as Mars goes retrograde at 19.41 Leo, which means that well into 2010 there will be major career breakthroughs in the field of creativity. A very powerful and successful time.
After a difficult but constructive year in 2008, the coming year promises to be a wild ride on the swings and roundabouts of hopes and dreams. On the very last days of 2008 Mercury conjoins Jupiter – which effectively brings partnership issues to the fore, and in a very positive way. With Jupiter entering Aquarius on January 5th, and Mercury making three conjunctions with Jupiter, the last one on February 24th at 11 degrees Aquarius also involving Mars, then partnership bonds will be cemented at this time… and it is good for children too. What an exciting month this will be! It is almost sure to bring travel, or electrifying developments in regard to personal development and education – a brilliant time for expanding networks. In May, June and July, Jupiter – the ruler of Sagittarius – makes its long-lasting conjunction with Neptune, and this brings a period of euphoria as you get swept up in a movement that is like a mass wave of emotion. It will feel like being on a balloon or a spaceship, and the important thing with this kind of travel is knowing how to come down to earth again. Jupiter goes retrograde and catches up with Neptune again just before Christmas, so the whole year will be flavored with lofty ideals connected with creativity, music, film, humanitarian and ecological ventures. This will later be known as the Obama effect.
You already tasted the entry of Pluto in Capricorn for a few months in 2008, but now it is here to stay, and the year starts with a powerful conjunction of Pluto and Mars in your sign, which means you are here to rule. It is a period when your will is supreme and you can realize your ambitions through sheer force of personality. You also experienced the opposition between your ruler Saturn and revolutionary Uranus in November 2008, so you know what it is like to straddle history, using the past as a springboard to launching a new future. These momentous trends continue in 2009, and probably nothing is settled before the last Saturn/Uranus opposition on September 15th. Mid-September is an extremely significant time for you … a time for cementing partnerships in a period of change and for making contracts too. It is the crowing point of a period of apprenticeship and learning connected with bridging two cultures. You have passed the test, and when Saturn enters Libra on October 29th you gain distinction and recognition. This brings a whole new phase in your life connected with status and career, and a whole new set of power games too. Put on your suit of armor!
Though 2008 was a year of respectable achievements, life has not been so kind over the last seven years, and it is about to make things up to you. Firstly Jupiter enters your sign in January bringing a period of optimism and expansion. Think back to the last time this happened in 1997-98. As Jupiter goes on to conjoin Neptune (and the mini-planet Chiron) in from May to July (and later in December) you will discover and use some extraordinary talents. Perhaps this will seem like a dream come true, and the indications are that you will be on Cloud 9 much of the time. Please take your parachute. Don’t let any dream get so big that it pops like bubble gum, leaving a sticky mess. Early July is especially a time when you can find yourself splashing helplessly about, especially in connection with family matters. What keeps you realistic in this period is Saturn in Virgo, which opposes Uranus, meaning that economy continues to be in major transition and needs constant adjustment and organization. But this is the time when you complete a revolutionary cycle of personal development, and when Saturn enters Libra at the end of October, a new period of hope and optimism begins. There is a snake in paradise, but you have the antidote to its poison. The world opens up at your feet, and you start feeling very international.
The two remaining oppositions of Saturn and Uranus focus your attention on relationships in 2009, and it can seem like having to control wild horses pulling in different directions. You have been extremely hard working and responsible in 2008, building up alliances, lifting burdens in friendships and groups and working conscientiously with others generally. Yet there is also a strong desire to be free to do your own thing. When your ruling planet Jupiter moves from Capricorn to Aquarius in January you will want to shed responsibility and work with your dreams and fantasies in a much more creative way. The year ahead is therefore a time when the greatest pleasure comes when you have the time to be on your own to really investigate inner issues – a kind of preparation for 2010 when you are ready to surf on a wave of personal fulfillment. This is a year when you tend to be in a dream world – far less realistic than in 2008 – and your escapist tendencies are stronger the ever. But if you are interested in spiritual development, this is a year when you can merge with something much greater than yourself and have a kind of cosmic baptism.
When reading these sun sign trends, you may find that there are certain events connected with another sign that seem to fit your situation. This is as it should be – your actual horoscope shows all 12 signs which all have some kind of area of influence. It could be said that you resonate with certain planets at certain times, and this could mean that you can learn something from all the signs. Have a happy 2009.
When royal astrologer John Dee consulted with Queen Elizabeth I in the 16th century, he almost certainly gave her good advice about matters of state. He certainly chose an auspicious day for the coronation (note 1) as Elizabeth had a long a successful reign that spanned 44 years. But there are some things her probably did not do. He probably did not dwell on the fact that her father, Henry VIII, had declared her a bastard and disinherited her. He probably did not dwell on the psychological consequences of her father having her mother beheaded for supposed adultery. He probably did not reflect on Elizabeth’s ability to have a rewarding love life after her quasi-incestuous relationship in her mid-teens with Thomas Seymour, the 2nd husband of her stepmother and guardian Catherine Parr. (Note 2)
In other words Dee did not dwell on the psychology of his queen or any other of his powerful clients, which might also explain why he survived to the ripe old age of 82. The last thing these people wanted to know was what kind of responsibility they or their upbringing had for the events that befell them. Prior to the 20th century the job of an astrologer was to map out the range of possibilities that lay ahead for their clients, and in this way offer them guidance about their future. And the astrological body of learning at this time was finely attuned to give the best results in this area. Techniques were many and rules innumerable, but the keen student could apply these skills and answer concrete questions about what fate had in store. That they also were accurate is attested to by a study of renaissance masters like William Lilly, Nostradamus, Marcilio Ficino, Cornelius Agrippa and Paracelsus, to name but a few. Their clients wanted to know what would happen, and they did their best to tell them.
Which is in quite strong contrast to the spiritual and psychological approach that has characterized astrology in the last century. Rejecting fatalistic and deterministic views, giants like Alan Leo, Grant Lewi, Dane Rudhyar and Liz Greene have been major figures in a slow evolution to a predominantly psychological interpretation style, where the role of prediction became smaller and smaller and more and more incompatible. This integration of esotericism and psychology is probably connected with the post-Renaissance discovery of Uranus, Neptune and Pluto – planets which open up areas of the psyche that were previously considered fated.
In a sense this evolution reflects the evolution of different models of viewing the universe. Prior to Newton (born 1642) the world view in the West was dominated by Christian philosophy and religion. Newtonian thinking mapped out a universe of action and reaction, which subsequently led to explanations of astrology in terms of cause and effect. Einstein mapped out relativity, leading to and understanding of astrology in energetic and psychological terms. Recent theories about the quantum universe can be used to explain astrology in terms of acausal synchronicity. None of these theories are true, and none are false… they are just relevant within the context of history. Civilization will always reinvent ways of redefining experience as human consciousness evolves. Over the past 2000 years individual consciousness has evolved from being subsumed by the collective through religion, to the development of the individual ego, to which psychological astrology is addressed.
In the last 25 years of the 20th century, psychological astrology really took off – not least because of works by Jungian-trained Liz Greene, of which “Saturn – a new look at an old devil” is perhaps the best known. Astrology went from being merely descriptive to explaining the psychological roots of behavior and thereby providing the client – at least theoretically – with the ability to become conscious of what previously had been unconscious and unexplained. A boom in astrological literature at this time brought heightened awareness of transits, leading to an understanding of the horoscope in terms of personal development and psychological growth.
In the very same period I visited an astrological colleague who had obtained a first edition of William Lilly’s “Christian Astrology” – ink blots and all, who spent painstaking months removing stains and blots, finally publishing the first 20th century edition of this classic work. (Note 3) The startling accuracy of these techniques led to a growing number of horary astrologers and horary astrology schools. Enthusiasts embraced horary skills with the zeal of new converts, and they have fought – often amongst themselves – to preserve the orthodoxy of the teachings. With the incredibly work that has subsequently been done by Project Hindsight (Note 4) practicing astrologers today have access to a original texts dating back to the very origins of the subject covering all forms of astrology and all forms of predictive techniques. So along with psychological astrology, traditional astrology has also flowered and expanded.
When I was editor of the Astrological Association Journal at the end of the 1990’s the split between those astrologers who practiced predominantly psychological astrology and those who practiced horary astrology was pronounced. And this split is still pronounced. In its extreme form horary practitioners reject psychological considerations and simply concentrate on the factual answer to the matter at hand. On the other hand psychological astrologers are at a loss as to how to integrate therapy with prediction. And when predictions do come into the picture, primarily with the interpretation of transits, then they are couched in terms that lack specificity.
The nitty-gritty is that when the psychological astrologer is asked by the client about outcomes, he or she cannot – and will not – supply them. To work therapeutically with a client, and then to pronounce an outcome in advance seems counterproductive. Conversely the horary practitioner happily provides the outcome, if it is clear, but is unable to give the client any tools to deal with it.
But this split between the psychological and the predictive is unnecessary and unhelpful. It is illusory to see traditional astrology as separate from a “modern” psychological astrology – it is all the same body of work in constant evolution. But right now there are many clients having an incomplete experience of the potential of astrology because of the lack of integration between prediction and therapy. The kind of client who in the eighties or nineties was satisfied with a psychological profile is dead and gone. People also want practical guidance about how to lead their lives, and this practical guidance can provided by what was once called Horary Astrology. In Europe the same study is called “The Astrology of the Moment” – in other words it is about what is happening here and now.
All things happen at the intersection between subjective consciousness and objective experience. The experiences that arise to greet our consciousness are dependant on innumerable factors related to previous actions. The way we deal with these experiences is dependant on our character, and the horoscope is a map of our character. It is a map of past actions and potential future actions – in the sense that a map of the London Underground is a map of London. The horoscope needs to be populated by the attention of the astrologer and client, just as the traveler, map in hand, sets out to explore London. The horoscope maps the past and present, but you get to co-create the future through your actions here and now.
The horoscope for any given moment is a map of the intersection of personal consciousness with time. It reflects exactly what is relevant about that moment for the individual. That is horary astrology. The horoscope for any moment deemed significant by the individual will inevitably reflect the essence of that individual’s interaction with the world – it could not be any other way. The planetary positions will exactly reflect not only the dynamics of the moment, but also the events leading up to it (previous aspects) and the events that are to come (aspects about to be formed). Even the timing will be provided by the movement of the planets and the sweep of the angles.
The astrology of the moment is no more than the same transits used by all astrologers, including those who work exclusively psychologically – just with added detail. Instead of looking at the headlines, the small print becomes visible. The added ingredient is the significance of the moment and the horoscope for the moment, which can be interpreted as a full chart, house rulers and all. Instead of explaining, for example, a Jupiter transit as a general theme, it is then seen in a specific context. Seeing such a theme in context is a huge advantage when working therapeutically.
This is best illustrated with an example. (Note 5)
Consultation 2: Aug 13th 1991 16.00 Copenhagen (AS 2.36 SG)
Two visits from a client, with a year and a month in between, replicated her natal Sun-Jupiter conjunction straddling the 9th house. Each time she came, the consultation chart picked up the theme of seeking happiness with lovers abroad, probably indicated by Jupiter ruling the natal 5th house. It related to the fact that her father used to take her on holidays – traditionally they visited a popular island resort (Pisces) as a “special treat”– but the holidays were an excuse for the father to get away from the mother and conduct a secret affair with another woman, in what was a yearly ritual.
The daughter, with Mercury in Pisces in the 8th, opposite Pluto-Uranus, kept this deadly secret throughout her childhood, but not without exacting a material quid pro quo from her father over the years. Obviously deeply impressed by this recipe for happiness, the daughter kept replicating it ever since. In each of her visits to me she was involved with a married man in another country, who she hoped would leave his wife for her. After all, with Saturn in her natal 7th house cusp, where was the appeal in being married?
It is easy to see that armed with the horoscope for the moment, the start of the consultation, the astrologer can see how a life theme – the Sun-Jupiter conjunction partially in the 8th and partially in the 9th house – is reflected in circumstances here and now. Instead of a general interpretation of the Sun-Jupiter theme, it is now possible to be specific. The potent energies of the present despair connected with the dream of a hoped-for partner, who is in fact already married and a thousand miles away, can be mobilized in the therapeutic process. It is comparatively easy to show how the client’s choices are unconsciously programmed by past experiences. And once this awareness dawns, the client cannot wait to change. This person did drop a history of love affairs shortly after the second consultation, married and had children. The fact that she had to come twice, and both consultation charts showed Sun-Jupiter in the 8th-9th houses shows that I did not do the job properly first time, but got a second chance.
It is tempting to think that this correlation between the birth chart and the consultation chart has been cherry-picked. It is a good example, but in fact this kind of correlation is the rule. I have had clients come with aspect patterns that could only have happened astronomically twice – once at birth and once at the consultation. At the very least clients will come with powerful natal aspects repeated with modifications at the time of the consultation. Planets are often at the exact same degree; the same combination of Sun, Moon, Mercury and Venus will be found in the same signs; the Ascendant and houses are the same… there are many variations, but almost invariably the consultation chart will be a neon sign, pointing to exactly those themes in the birth chart that are relevant for the client today.
What a tool this is to the psychological astrologer! And at no cost. No new techniques need to be learned, no new skills acquired. Yet this method is the traditional method. William Lilly used the consultation chart as a rule, rather than the birth chart. Astrologers in India are adept at this – even dispensing with the horoscope altogether. Placing their staff in the ground and observing the time through the shadow it casts, and being cognizant of the position of the Sun, Moon and planets, the consultation chart is already there, with its message of past actions and future results. This is the astrology of the moment, pregnant with meaning.
In traditional horary some practitioners maintain that there are circumstances in which a chart cannot be interpreted. The word “strictures” has been coined to signify astrological configurations which prevent interpretation. These do not apply in the consultation chart. If the client turns up with the Ascendant in the last degrees or the first degrees of a sign, for example, it merely reflects something important about their situation. (That is: whether something is being wound up, or a new situation is about to develop). The same applies to whether the Moon is void of course, whether Saturn is in the first or seventh house, and all the other considerations which might traditionally be thought to prevent judgment. There are no circumstances in which the consultation chart for the client’s arrival can not be interpreted. Otherwise interpretation rules are as we know them: the client is represented by the Ascendant ruler, his partner by the Descendant ruler, his boss by the 10th house ruler, his home by the 4th house ruler etc.
When the astrologer adds the chart for the moment to the consultation process, it is like someone discovering for the first time that they have needed to wear glasses. The sudden clarity opens up many new perspectives. Not only is there a tool for precision therapy, it also becomes possible to answer quite detailed questions. What practicing astrologer has not had a client pose questions that are extremely difficult to answer if you are only relying on transits and progressions? Should my mother go into a nursing home, or stay in her house? My boyfriend wants to move in – is this a good idea? I have a potential business partner – is it someone I can trust? These are the kind of questions clients expect astrologers to have answers to… and with the consultation chart you do.
The astrological consultation can be a life-changing experience for the client – a time when the raw energy in the client’s psyche is exposed, and being exposed, ready for change. The snapshot of time afforded by the consultation chart reflects clearly the events leading up to the meeting and the current situation. If you identify the actors in play – the people and things the planets represent – then this chart also maps out the future. Prediction is suddenly brought back into the psychological equation. How are you going to handle it?
What can’t be done is to work on the client with, say, a Moon-Uranus square, showing how emotional shock and separation has created an unreal and glassy barrier between the client and his loved one, and then say: “You’ll separate in 5½ months”. Experience shows that even good astrologers get predictions wrong quite a lot of the time. Concrete predictions without the involvement of the client are quite unhelpful. Clients tend to ignore them; they don’t sink in. On the other hand, when clients are invited into the prediction process they get enthusiastically involved, and there is a likelihood that the predictions will be correct.
Specific predictions about the future can be made if the details of a client’s life have been explained by the client. The fewer the details the more difficult it is to be specific – at least that is my personal experience. There are literally millions of permutations in a person’s future, if you have no idea of the framework. Looking at an Underground map it is possible show someone the way, but it is impossible to imagine what it will be like emerging into the hectic crowds at Piccadilly Circus or Times Square, if you have never been there. Only the client knows what it is like to be the client; without the client’s involvement prediction will fall flat.
Prediction in this context is the co-creation of a desirable scenario by the client with the guidance of the astrologer. Events do not come out of the blue – or at least it is very rare. The car is not going to crash; the plane is not going to be hijacked; the client will not win the lottery. Normally events unfold exactly according to the wishes and drives of the client. What a client builds up in life is a combination of hope and experience – Jupiter and Saturn. The mind is in a constant state of wishing for a desired scenario, whilst taking account of the current limitations. The transits of the outer planets represent more subtle forces that can seem outside the client’s control. Thus transit Pluto might show an existential battle that is draining a client of energy, Neptune an inner sense of meaninglessness that undermines the life nerve, Uranus a restlessness and desire for freedom… and these feelings may be more or less unconscious. The astrologer can help define the goals, refine the hopes, and explain the evolutionary processes of the outer planet transits.
When the client comes to the astrologer, there is often tremendous lack of clarity about the future. Clients are not at first so interested in what psychological patterns make them tick, but they are very interested in what to do. They feel perhaps that they have a variety of choices. You feel that you have a good idea via transits and the consultation chart, which way things will go, though you may be wrong. Prediction is now the art of aligning the genuine desires and needs of the client with the indications you see in the horoscope.
In the following example the client came 6 minutes earlier than the planned time of 10 a.m.:
Consultation chart: March 14th 2008. 9.54 am Copenhagen. (AS 27.59 GE)
Birth Chart: May 16th 1963. 17.20 Copenhagen (AS 27.24 LI)
The birth chart showed a tight T-square with Saturn at 22.51 Aquarius conjunct the Moon and opposite Mars at 21.40 Leo, with a Sun-Mercury conjunction in Taurus in 8th House. The consultation chart (transiting) Neptune is within 3 minutes of arc of that Saturn. Her Mars-Saturn opposition is echoed in the consultation chart by the exact sextile that takes place between these planets that day showing her enormous drive for professional success. The current Venus-Mars trine reflects the very same trine in her birth chart. The Sun-Moon square in the consultation chart with an orb of one degree reflects the Sun-Moon square with the same orb in the birth chart. Both the birth chat and consultation chart Ascendants are at 27 degrees.
This is a good example of the client’s expressed wishes for the future being out of harmony with the astrological indications. The client launched into a description of her plan to sell a new health project to the corporate world and wanted to know about her chances. But the consultation chart shows the main players in transition – the Ascendant will soon change sign, and there is imminent change for Ascendant ruler Mercury, where it will enter the opposite sign from its rulership (and will therefore be out on a limb), and furthermore oppose Saturn, which hardly bodes well for success. And clearly with transit Neptune activating the Mars/Saturn opposition in 2008 and the Sun/Moon square in 2009, the realization of ambitions and attainment of material security is simply not on the agenda. Further probing revealed that the client was had been off sick with stress for four months, which is clearly indicated in the consultation chart by the separation of the Moon in the 12th house in square to Uranus by four degrees (reflecting her natal Moon/Uranus opposition). So basically the client was in no state to fight the battles that she had in mind amongst the big players in the health industry.
The psychological astrologer could focus on many things, but obviously the Moon/Saturn conjunction in the 4th opposite Mars indicates a relentless and dominating mother, who managed to maintain a glassy distance to her child, and punished her physically when she was out of line. With transiting Neptune going over this pattern and squaring the Sun and Mercury in Taurus from 2008 to 2010 it was highly unlikely that she would have career success, and highly unlikely that she would attain the economic security that the Sun in Taurus in the 8th longs for. But the T-square also shows a stubborn determination, so, despite being off work with stress, she was still driving herself hard.
With the consultation chart ruler in the 10th going into Pisces to oppose Saturn, quite clearly she was not going to realize her plans. My first job was therefore to disavow her of her belief in the possibility of career success in competition with large and successful health care firms. Really this idea is reflected by Mercury in Aquarius conjoining Neptune and the North Node, and Mercury would be moving out of Aquarius within the day. The Sun’s conjunction with Uranus and sextile to Jupiter in the 8th showed the big players.
Psychologically speaking the meaning of Neptune’s transit over the T-square is to soften up the ambitious and oppositional approach which she has to life. Generally this softening up occurs because initiatives run into the sand, the ocean undermines the cliff. Failure is the engine of change, bringing surrender, and with surrender come acceptance, spiritual depth, nuance and insight. My client’s “stress” was a trick of the psyche to stop her in her tracks until she had redefined her views about what was important about living.
What was not conducive to happiness was to continue a pattern of behavior that required her to battle against the odds. That is what she did in childhood. She was beaten into submission but survived by switching off the emotional signals (Moon-Saturn in Aquarius) and putting up a stubborn fight. Punishment was met by defiance; when pushed, she dug her heels in.
To get the client to realign to a more empowering view of the future requires working with past and future in parallel. Holding the future scenario in mind – she had to drop her doomed enterprise – the strategy is to get her to reconnect with the emotions connected with her difficult childhood, and evoke an awareness of certain decisions she made at the time to hold out, no matter what. With the dawning of realization it is then possible to turn the attention to the future once again.
Her main concern was for security – she must battle it out and win… it was a matter of economic survival. But that’s tough, because her economy will be undermined in the future with the Neptune transit to her Taurus sun. It would be foolish to imagine economic security in the short term. So what are the bright points?
The bright points are: she his married, her husband has a good job, so he can support her (as indeed he is doing while she is off work with stress). The ruler of the 7th house (partner) in the consultation chart is Jupiter, in partner’s 2nd house, where it will retrograde to trine Saturn during 2008 and also sextile Uranus… he is earning more money all the time. She owns her home and there is plenty of equity in the property. And with current house prices, that is a lot of money. So what is the problem? She has enough to tide her over during the next 2 years. And she agrees.
Now she is already feeling better because the prospect of struggling for success is in reality overwhelming for her, and the idea of letting things flow whilst her husband provides the security is having growing appeal. But what should she do with her time? What she should do is what Mercury will do… enter Pisces, oppose Saturn, conjoin Venus, ultimately activating the Jupiter/Uranus sextile, though that is some time into the future. Mercury has actually been retrograde in Aquarius and had conjoined Venus earlier, and then Venus had gone ahead. Now Mercury, gathering speed, was about to conjoin Venus again, but this time a Venus exalted in Pisces. What story is that?
The story is that she has written a book for her child (Venus and Mercury rule the 5th house in the consultation chart). Whilst she had been off sick, that was what she did. She liked doing it. She did not like struggling to find clients for her health business, but when she sat down to write that book, time went by and she felt happy. Should she try to get the book published? Well, if she does it will be rejected – Mercury opposes Saturn – the book is not good enough, yet. What will happen is that as Mercury reconnects with Venus and then travel together through Pisces until activating the Jupiter/Uranus sextile, she will continue creative writing. This may also be good in the long-term for success in the health industry, but probably because of some innovation or alternative approach.
The client liked this scenario and left with a feeling that she could survive a couple of years of financial insecurity with the resources offered by her husband and property, and that she could advantageously use her time being creative. At the same time she had a psychological understanding of the inner dynamics that made her stick at something that was not going to bear fruit. In this way the consultation satisfactorily integrated quite a detailed scenario for the future, with some psychological realization and change.
A good astrological consultation interweaves past, present and future into an integrated whole. Rediscovering the past is not enough in itself; the insights of the past have to be integrated in a plan for the future, and the plan for the future is waiting to be discovered in the consultation chart and expanded upon with the combined resources of client and astrologer in an empowering act of co-creation.
Note 1: Coronation of Elizabeth I: January 15, 1559 12.00 LMT
Note 2: The consequences for Seymour were not so good. Catherine Parr had him arrested for treason and beheaded.
Note 3: Catriona Mundle who helped restore this first edition is still practicing as a consultant in England.
Note 4: Project Hindsight was founded in 1993 astrological scholars Robert Hand, Robert Zoller and Robert Schmidt and is dedicated to translating original astrological texts.
Note 5. This example comes from my book: “Astrology: Transformation and Empoerment” Red Wheel-Weiser 2002. (Page 220)
In April 1994, when Pluto and Jupiter conjoined the North Node in Scorpio the worst genocide of the 1990’s took place when extremist Hutu militias murdered an estimated 800,0000 to 1,000,000 Tutsis and moderate Hutus in Rwanda. It seems that the continent of Africa is so often subject to huge upheavals with so much loss of life, whether through Aids and curable diseases, through famine, or through civil war. Since 1994 Pluto has moved from Scorpio, through Sagittarius – religious terror – and here in the beginning of 2008 it is in Capricorn, so the astrological observer is inclined to a degree of nervousness about what new areas of human experience will undergo painful transformations. When Kenyan elections on December 27th 2007 took place and were followed by riots killing up to 1000 people, the question arises whether one of Africa’s most prosperous and stable countries is about to descend into chaos.
In that election the opposition coalition led by Odinga was forecast to win over the current government leader Kibaki. Vote counting on the 28th gave Odinga a strong lead, but as more results were announced the gap closed. Kibaka declared himself the winner with 232,000 votes and he was sworn in for a second term amidst violent protests from the opposition. International observers pointed to corruption, noting that in one constituency the turnout rate appeared to be 115%. (Note 1)
Odinga is associated with the ethnic group Luo, whilst Kibaki represents the interests of the dominant Kikuyu, who have basically been running Kenya since independence from the British in 1963. The deadly rioting since the election has resulted in an ethnic polarization that has forced millions of people to flee from their homes and relocate to tribal areas where they feel safe. Even in Nairobi many slum areas have polarized in this way. Police are escorting people back to their “ancestral lands” which is creating a complete split in the country between North/East and South/West.
The election took place just after Jupiter entered Capricorn. This was the time when Mars was retrograde in Cancer and in exact opposition to Jupiter, obviously a recipe for ideological conflict along ethnic lines. A retrograde Mars in Cancer always remembers tribal affiliations and is willing to fight for home and family with a primeval emotional motivation. The fact that Mars was retrograde suggests that there is unfinished business, and we can expect a new battle around April 24 when Mars catches up once more with Jupiter, which is about to turn retrograde, at 22 Cancer/Capricorn.
HOROSCOPE: Kenya – 12th December 1963. 0.00 Nairobi.
As the independence chart for Kenya has Mars at 4.56 Capricorn and the Sun on election morning was exactly on this Mars, there seemed destined to be a fight for leadership. The threat of internal revolution is shown by the current Uranus transit in square to the Sun which is exact on March 16th, October 28th and December 27th. This transit shows continued instability throughout 2008. It shows too the magnet that Kenya has now become to foreign dignitaries who in February 2008 are doing their utmost to prevent the situation from worsening. Whilst Kibaki clings to power and hopes that time itself will work in his favor as institutions accept the status quo, the former UN secretary general Kofi Annan is trying to mediate, joined at the time of writing by US secretary of state Condoleezza Rice.
Perhaps Uranus transiting the sun also shows that other famous Kenyan, Barak Obama, whose father (of the same name) had been an economic advisor for the Kenyan government, before being sacked. The father died in 1982, a disappointed man who made little headway with his proposals for a more democratic economic redistribution of resources. Obama visited Kenya in 1997 when he tried to unravel some of the unknowns connected with his father (relating to his own Sun in Leo square Neptune). Obama is, in Kenya, admired throughout the whole country; perhaps people find in him what they have not been able to get from their own leaders. Recently Obama gave a rather courageous speech about corruption in Kenya aimed at the sitting president Kibaki, when he was on a visit there. (Note 2) Perhaps one should not underestimate the fact that Obama’s roots are with the Luo ethnic grouping and he has cemented quite strong bonds with Odinga, as this could have a strong effect on Kenya’s future, if Obama becomes president.
Looking at Kenya’s independence chart, the sun is strong in Sagittarius, and its position in the 4th house may indicate the wide-open spaces and safari associations we have with the country, as well as the international dimension it has always had with tourists, expatriates and Indians. The wide trine to Jupiter in Aries supports this outdoor and optimistic picture. The loose square to the Uranus/Pluto conjunction suggests rather an explosive cocktail with dictatorial tendencies in the leadership that must control a wide mix of peoples. With Saturn now transiting the Ascendant and the Uranus/Pluto conjunction, the weakness of the myriad of ethnic divisions in the land is highlighted.
The strongest aspect to the Sun is its sextile to a dignified Saturn in Aquarius, which in itself contains the roots for a powerful democracy. It is worth remembering that the country is still very young. It has evolved from a single party state to a multiparty state (in 1991 when Uranus went over the Capricorn stellium), and now there are over 20 separate political parties, though power is still concentrated in the hands of the Kikuyu.
The current Uranus transit may shake things up and internationalize the internal strife, but it is unlikely in itself to create a revolution or civil war… just continued disturbances. With Ascendant ruler Mercury conjoining an exalted Mars in Capricorn, there are indications of strong if rather autocratic governance, with an efficient business community. A tight hold is kept on the reins, and the close sextile of Mars to a Moon in fall in Scorpio indicates that the people are subject to strong policing and a lot of rules and regulations.
The current strife is also reflected by Kenya’s progressed Moon in Gemini which has been exactly square Uranus in January. As the moon goes on to square Pluto in April there is still danger ahead as this is a strong signature for ethnic cleansing. Furthermore progressed Venus is now at 9.42 Pisces and during the course of the year it will conjoin the Descendant, simultaneously activating the Uranus/Chiron opposition. Venus progressed opposed progressed Uranus last year and opposes radix Uranus in June this year… there will therefore be more upheaval in the population where the differences between people and groups will be more emphasized than the similarities.
Apart from wounding the population, this development is going to create havoc with Kenya’s economy. Venus in Capricorn is ruler of the 9th and in the fifth, indicating the huge revenues generate from tourism. These revenues will dwindle and plunge Kenya into an economic crisis which will be at its peak from 2011 to 2012 when Venus opposes Pluto. This is also the time when Pluto finally conjoins Mars and sextiles the Moon in Scorpio, which suggests the iron hand of dictatorship in sorting out self-destructive tendencies in the population.
As things stand right now the decisive influence is transiting Saturn on Kenya’s Ascendant awakening the need to tighten controls and the establishment of order. With Saturn making trines to both Jupiter and Pluto in Capricorn, the indications are that a heavy military presence and authoritarian government will maintain a degree of order, whilst there will be a controlled chaos amongst the population with continued reorganization along ethnic lines.
International pressure is geared to creating a power-sharing agreement between Kibaki and Odinga to prevent further violence and polarization of the population. The Saturn trine to Pluto indicates that this pressure is enormous and unrelenting up to May, whilst the trine to Jupiter is exceptionally strong from September to November. If there is to be power sharing, only international bullying will effectuate it, and this could happen at the end of April. It is possible that the progressed Moon in Gemini will see the people represented by two leaders, and the Uranus square to the Sun may indicate a double-leadership. Ultimately the solution will be a transformation of existing government practices and a campaign against corruption, and this is likely to happen with the coming Pluto transit over the stellium in Capricorn. In the meantime increased instability and economic difficulties lie ahead.
Tests have shown that if astrologers are presented with horoscopes for people they do not know, they do much worse than they expect to, when trying to describe who they are and what they do. For example, it has been shown that astrologers do no better than chance when trying to match horoscopes to professions. In actual fact people are so incredibly different, and there are so many of them, that it is impossible in reality to consistently predict what people are like, and what they do. With about 5 billion people in the world, and every one of them different, astrology is still a fantastic instrument, because it can assign a unique and complex signature to each individual, which can subsequently be interpreted according to a set of rule.
It’s the interpretation that is the challenge. My own interpretations only come to life when a living person comes into the room. Until that moment it is as if the horoscope is like a subway map – things only become meaningful when I am actually in the train and hurtling towards the destination. Likewise, it is only when the client begins to explain some of the life structure that I feel I can apply the horoscope map and give guidance. But once the client’s life is mapped on to the chart, it is a different matter. Suddenly it is possible to give detailed descriptions and accurate predictions – especially if there is mastery of the consultation chart, the horary chart timed for the client’s arrival.
But it can still be difficult to answer quite simple questions that are crucial for the client – not least the Big Question: when will I find my partner? The consultation chart would show if a meeting was on the cards in the immediate future, but if it did not, then it would be nice to be able to give some indication about the love life in the more distant future. Transits can show relationships, but in the evolution of the soul and the meeting of a mate the key influence is secondary progressions. (Note 1)
Interpreting secondary progressions is however no easy matter. Just as in horary, planets rule and are representatives for the energy of the 12 houses, so Venus may bring love, but if it is ruler of the 10th it may also bring career success. Or, if Venus rules the 7th and progresses to square 9th house ruler Jupiter, there is a strong likelihood that a legal judgment will go against the partner, or that he or she will fail and exam. Squares and oppositions in progressions can be quite unforgiving, because progressions show the slow unfoldment of the karmic propensities – when Venus comes to square Jupiter it is the result of a process that has been in the pipeline for a long time.
The following interpretations apply best for conjunction aspects. Allowances need to be made for progressed sextiles and trines, which will almost certainly bring happy events, and progressed squares and oppositions, which will bring challenging circumstances in connection with the aspect. Generally when progressed Venus aspects another planet, a person will come into your life who reflects that planet. It is also extremely likely that the person in question will actually have the Venus-planet combination in their own chart. Progressions show encounters, and the subsequent integration and absorption of talents and qualities that are destined from birth. People you meet with Venus progressions have a good chance of sticking around for many years as you learn about the qualities connected with the progression.
Progressed Venus to Ascendant: Arrival of Love
In this period love comes into your life. This is either in the form of a warm-hearted and devoted person who wants to be in your company, or simply because you find new ways of expressing your own romantic and loving nature. Whatever – this is a fortunate time both romantically and economically. You want to establish balance in your life, and you do this by asserting your personal taste, making aesthetic choices and generally adopting a personal lifestyle that reflects an appreciation for beauty and quality. Your heart is opened and love flows – and some lucky person is the object of your affection.
Progressed Venus to MC: Career blessings
There is a very favorable career development at this time, which simply makes work more pleasurable and rewarding. This can be because of the arrival of a kind and generous boss, a woman perhaps, or because of a radical improvement of the environment. This is the time for you to deal with people rather than systems or organization, or if you deal with objects, then aesthetics and beauty will play a role. The funds are there to launch projects and the right people are there to support you in your professional path. This is also an excellent time for happy developments with the home and family… for example a time to renovate the attic.
Progressed Venus to Descendant: A loved one arrives
This is a time when an important relationship can start. If you do not have a partner, then a truly loving person comes into your life to bless you. If you do not have a child, then this is a time when what you have waited for comes to you, or when a child marries for example. Balance and harmony comes in to your life now in a way you have never experienced before, and you develop an appreciation for the good things in life and the pleasures a relationship can bring. This is an excellent time for personal and business partnership, when people from the outside bring something that sweetens your life. These developments can also bring favorable moves or relocation.
Progressed Venus to IC: Love moves in
You can expect a happy development in your domestic life with this influence. This is the time when love comes into your life through a child, a daughter perhaps, or when you can invest in property, or when you find the funds to really do some home improvement that makes your house and garden a pleasure to be in. Whatever: your environment is blessed by love and things of beauty, and this is clearly a family blessing. Someone moves in who has a graceful aura – there may be a certain vanity or self-indulgence, but overall it is a pleasure to enjoy the company. If you can afford property now – and the indications are that you can – it will be lovely.
Progressed Venus to Sun: Blaze of glory
It is at this time of your life that your natural talent and charm comes out into the open and you are able to make a powerful impression on the world. Your aesthetic skills and tastes are somehow central to your whole being, and this creates a charismatic aura that brings success, prosperity and recognition. This is a peak period for your love life, because your powers of attraction have never been more radiant. You can fall head over heels for an influential person in a prominent position. This is a time when love can absorb you totally – even blind you. Yet it is also a time when your own loving nature is expressed fully and completely authentically. You can push for prominence, promotion, more money, and generally get what you put your mind to. But don’t let it go to your head.
Progressed Venus to Moon: Loving and caring
You are entering a period when attachments have never been stronger. There is an overwhelming bond of love – the kind of love a mother feels for a child perhaps – and this creates great intimacy, and also dependence. Finding the balance between loving and needing is a challenge, but there is no doubt that this is a time when your loving and caring sides converge, and totally absorb the object of your affections. Giving yourself completely to the welfare of a child is likely. But this is also a time for romantic love. You meet an emotional and rather dependant person, and there is mutual care and support. With love comes the need to build a home – a place where the family can be nurtured and thrive. There are powerful family developments at this time which open up your heart and increase your vulnerability.
Progressed Venus to Venus: A milestone in love
There is a milestone in relationships around this time, where you reconnect with an essential need or drive to express your values and tastes, and reflect these values in your choice of partner, and perhaps your choice of economic path. You’ve seen it all before, so now you ask the question: What do I truly value? Your choices are up for review, and you search within to find out what you really like and are attracted to; what are your authentic needs, not least in your love life. You draw energy from within, and there you find an endless source of love that you need to share. You just need to make the right choices about how to express your love and who with, and how you want to reflect your self in the things you own and value.
Progressed Venus to Mars: Eve and Adam
A crucial development takes place in relationships around this time, as your inner need for love encounters the ultimate object of its desire. Classically this is irresistible attraction between a man and a woman, the magnetic inevitability of seduction, the creating of a child. If you are single at this time, you can expect powerful sexual experiences – as good as it gets – and this may well be a time when you meet your natural mate, and someone with whom children come as a matter of biological necessity. This is the time to go for what you want. Yet the passions that are aroused can also be overwhelming, and in their wake there can be rage and jealousy… it is after all your animal side that is awakened now. Rational considerations have little effect when love and desire run rampant. This is a good time for dynamic business partnerships.
Progressed Venus to Jupiter: Happiness in abundance
There may be no other time in your life when the horn of plenty is so full. In love you can expect fortunate events like marriage or falling in love, and this will be with someone wise and generous – perhaps from a foreign culture, or at least with a cosmopolitan view. A person who is interested in the music and arts, or with a fine intellectual capacity… for this is the time for you too to do everything you can to expand your cultural credentials. This is an excellent time for intellectual honors, and for being invited into a prestigious social group. Prosperity will also come your way – and without too much effort. Faith in the future and simple good luck bring influential people into your life who influence your career in a beneficial way. Now is the time to make hay whilst the sun shines – for the sun will certainly not shine for ever.
Progressed Venus to Saturn: The welding of bonds
It is at this time of your life that you get involved in a relationship or social circumstance that has great significance for the way you relate for years into the future. There is a heavy commitment, and the hand of karma weighs strongly on your shoulders. You could forge an unbreakable bond with someone or some group, but the responsibilities this entails can be very challenging. There is a sense of inevitability – you cannot escape. You must now commit in the long term and accept the challenges ahead. You gain strength of character. You develop moral fiber. You build economic, romantic or social foundations for the future. There may be times when the pressure makes you feel unhappy or depressed. You may suffer from a sense of being unloved or unpopular. All this must be taken on board – you will come out of this period of relationship challenge with a strong, self-sufficient character.
Progressed Venus to Uranus: Breaking social barriers
Around this time you find yourself being drawn to a completely different type of relationship that inspires you in your personal development. Rather than commitment to a single individual as in traditional marriage, you feel the need to become part of a group of eclectic people who are on the fringe of society in some way and driven by ideals that run counter to convention. This may well place strains on existing relationships – especially as changes can come as a complete surprise – but it is crucial for you to experiment and explore on the social front. If you are unattached you will meet a person who takes you for a walk on the wild side – a person with an electric personality totally different culturally from what you are used to. It is as if you have to explore the extremes in yourself to find out what your true values are. Professionally this is a time to join with international teams and promote values that represent a distinct alternative to what has been previously expected.
Progressed Venus to Neptune: The higher purpose of love
Your values in relationships go through a subtle though powerful shift culminating around this time, perhaps because of events that remind you that nothing in life lasts for ever. Sickness or death is inevitable the older people get, so the crucial attitude is to show your love and appreciation for the people you love – here and now. Or, this period can bring a sense of confusion and dissolution in relationships because you feel that you cannot control the choices of others. And you can’t You need to embrace an attitude of surrender or acceptance. It is precisely at this time that spiritual breakthroughs can provide answers where none could previously be found. By meeting with other spiritual seekers, you can find the blessings of divine and unconditional love, and develop the power of compassion in your life.
Progressed Venus to Pluto: Love and the underworld
Events in your love life around this time awaken such powerful emotions that you can expect a transformation in how you express your love and sexuality and how you bond with others generally. You are drawn to the taboo like a moth to the flame, even if such an attraction threatens to destroy the very foundations you stand on. If you have been living a superficial relationship, then a crisis will force you to confront the demons that have been locked away in the deep. This is the time when you confront jealousy, power and control and are over manned. The release of psychic material transforms your values for ever, initiating a psychological process that brings authenticity, intensity and erotic power. Relationships that develop at this time draw you ever deeper into circumstances beyond your control. On the material front this is also a time to let go of those things that no longer serve any useful purpose, even if this means financial loss. The phoenix will arise from the ashes.
Progressed Venus to Chiron: The love and the wound
Extraordinary experiences can take place in your love life around this time, when you encounter events in relationships that confront you with a weakness or vulnerability that can seem like an unhealed wound. This relates to childhood experiences of hurt through emphatic rejection; experiences that nudged you into detaching from your body and rationalizing your feelings. People you meet and love at this time may be wounded themselves, or you may inadvertently hurt them, and perhaps the same can happen for you too. But there is an important learning experience here, because you also discover the healing power of love within yourself. Giving your heart to another may be painful, but it is also rewarding.
Progressed Venus to North Node: Love and destiny
You find yourself getting drawn into a social group that is an important part of the collective and that can play a crucial role in your personal development for years into the future. This can also be a time when you meet a particular individual with whom you can feel there is an inexplicable bond –a karmic bond – that draws you together across the sands of time. It is a magical world of dragons and fairy tales. Whilst some might say you lose your head, it can feel as if you are at a crossroads, and that your relationship choices at this time will decide the direction your spiritual future takes. Old relationships to groups and individuals fall away now and are replaced by new.
Progressed Venus to South Node: Re-connecting with an old bond
You may find yourself getting deeply involved with someone with whom you feel you have a very strong connection from the past. Some might say this is a karmic bond, at any rate there is a sense of knowing this person intimately… of having some kind of history with this person. By reconnecting at this time, you may restart a relationship that never truly finished, or finish a relationship that was unable to start. This can feel like meeting a soul mate. This can also be a time when you round off a relationship that has run its course. At the same time you can get drawn into a group or social scene which has great significance for you.
The aspects of progressed Venus in themselves are not decisive in regard to love and marriage, but they do show the evolution and integration of qualities that will make your love life richer. If you are in an existing relationship, and progressed Venus conjoins Pluto, then this is not an indication of the end of the relationship, just that it must go through a process of transformation to be healthy. Or, if Venus rules the 7th house, for example, it could show the partner getting interested in therapy, or totally changing appearance or life style. In making judgments about what will happen, house ruler-ship is crucial, and the effect of the progression can be very specific. For example if Venus aspects 8th house ruler Saturn, then your bank may demand repayment of a debt. Your partner may feel blocked sexually because of self-worth issues. You may visit and older female therapist.
Discovering when a long-term partner comes into the picture is a complex process. The best indicator is when the Ascendant ruler aspects the Descendant ruler, or when the progressed Ascendant aspects a planet. (But in the latter case the birth time must be accurate). But Venus will always show matters of the heart, and meetings with people who bring new areas of the heart to flower.
Adrian Ross Duncan 14.01.2008
1. Secondary progressions are a technique where each day after birth is equivalent to a year of the life. The progressed chart for age 30 is calculated by making a horoscope for 30 days after birth – same birth time and birth place. This correlates each revolution of the Earth on its axis (a day) with a revolution of the Earth around the sun (a year). Calculate your progressed chart on line at http://www.astro.com/
Without Jupiter it could be difficult to get out of bed in the morning. Everyday we see to it that we have something to look forward to – a vision to reach, a reward to be enjoyed. So huge is this need that prosperous industries have been built around it. Lotteries, football pools, casinos tune in to our drive to visualize magical good fortune, and we happily pay our money to keep the dream alive. Personal growth industries mobilize our ability to think positively and harness the power of belief… the idea that anything is possible, just as long as we put our minds to it.
When we visualize something with Jupiter, we create an inner picture, an inner feeling or an inner certainty that it will happen. The more we build on this visualization, the more likely it will come true. Because of this positive focus, we simply channel our energy into what makes us happy, and as often as not, if our dreams are within the boundaries of reality – and that Saturn decides – we end up getting what we want. As the saying goes: be careful what you wish for – you might get it.
Beliefs tend to be arrived at through the evidence of our experience through time – Jupiter and Saturn generally work hand in hand. They become solidified into convictions, and these convictions tend to define how our lives develop and expand. Aspects to Jupiter encourage or limit our beliefs, and define what kind of convictions we are attracted to. For example, a Mars/Jupiter conjunction would believe that where there is a will there is a way, whilst a Venus/Jupiter would believe in the principle of abundance (and spend accordingly).
During the course of our lives, there are completely predictable ages at which we will strongly manifest the influence of Jupiter in our lives and redefine our convictions and beliefs. These are of course at the conjunction cycles which take place at the age of 11-12, 23-24, 35-36, 47-48, 59-60, 71-72 and 83-84, and also at various stages of these cycles. The basic factor influencing what we think is possible and shaping our convictions at these times is the birth position of Jupiter by sign. The following texts give some idea of these influences:
Jupiter in Aries
You have a belief in the purity of action, and rather than dithering hesitantly when making a decision you make an intuitive leap based upon a straightforward and uncomplicated view of what is right and what is wrong. Action speaks louder than words as far as you are concerned, and therefore you act, lighting up the path ahead with the torch of righteousness.
Jupiter in Taurus
You believe in the value of material goods, and you are guided by a need to see things grow and to consolidate that growth. You are not convinced by fast talkers, dreamers or anyone with unrealistic plans. A bird in the hand is definitely worth two in the bush. With this attitude you cultivate the soil for fruitful growth.
Jupiter in Gemini
You believe in the power of knowledge and learning, and you can never know enough. You see value in expanding your network of contacts, improving communications methods and language skills and reaching out socially. The more enthusiastic you get, the more you spread yourself, which can dilute your ability to achieve your visions.
Jupiter in Cancer
You have an instinctive understanding of the value of bonding, and this leads you to channel your dreams into creating the best environment for your family. Happiness is in the home, or in creating a nourishing place for people to be. What has meaning for you is a sense of belonging, and you will be both inclusive and protective of those you care for.
Jupiter in Leo
You know that people need someone to look up to, and you believe that person can be you. Growth for you is increasing your qualities as a human being, and expressing these qualities through the things you create. Gaining insight into yourself has a high priority, but you would also like to make a big splash when you announce your arrival on the scene.
Jupiter in Virgo
You have a great body of knowledge concerning administration and organization which gives you skills in dealing with people at work, and insight into interrelationships both on a practical, health and spiritual level. You have strong convictions about the supremacy of efficiency and good planning.
Jupiter in Libra
You believe in balance, and balance for you is on every level – in your relationships, in your choices and in your aesthetic judgment. Fairness is supremely important, and to be fair you believe in seeing things from every angle. You also believe in refined human behavior and are an example to others in this respect.
Jupiter in Scorpio
Having experienced the greatest highs and the deepest lows you believe that Life can come up with anything. Therefore you believe in the supremacy of spirit as a factor of survival. You are determined to uproot falsehood and inauthenticity, and are unflinchingly determined to get to the bottom of everything. You want security, but are prepared to lose it.
Jupiter in Sagittarius
You believe that there is exciting territory to explore both in your inner life and your outer life. There are no limits for the spirit – the liberating factor in life is insight and understanding. You are looking to expand this understanding by any means possible, though study and travel are your preferred methods.
Jupiter in Capricorn
Your opinions are considerably constrained by the demands of society. A strong sense of duty guides you, and the insights you gain remind you that some kind of structure is necessary to contain growth. Optimism is therefore tempered by a somber realism. You measure success by the concrete achievements you have attained.
Jupiter in Aquarius
You believe in the brotherhood of man, and are perplexed by the fact that others do not see how crucial solidarity is. Your opinions are strong and uncompromising, but expressed gently out of consideration for others. You see liberation by embracing change and would like to serve as a bridge of consciousness between tradition and renewal.
Jupiter in Pisces
What is important for you is the unfettered power of the imagination. You see no limitations to belief – if you can think something, it can be done. Whilst experience shows that dreams often founder on the rocks of reality, nothing takes away your faith that there can be a liberation for human beings.
The sign position of Jupiter, tempered by the aspects it makes, will generally define what people believe is possible and/or important. As such Jupiter represents a kind of belief filter that selectively chooses what is possible or not. As beliefs develop into convictions, this filter can be quite a limiting factor in our life experience. Therefore people tend to develop on a predictable path as regards expansion and attainment in their life. Jupiter in Capricorn never gets beyond the conviction that achievement only comes with hard work; Jupiter in Leo can never remove personal ego from the equation of happiness. Still, every time Jupiter is activated in the chart, there is a chance to reorientate and redefine what is wanted from the future.
Opportunities for growth, expansion and success also arise in the 12 year cycle of Jupiter through the 12 houses, and these influences are described below:
Jupiter transiting 1st House
After a period when there has been growth in an inner spiritual level and a certain satisfaction in having a low profile, the time has come for you to actualize your vision of how you would like to be in the future. This means putting your beliefs and convictions on the line and incorporating them into your lifestyle. Outer events challenge you to take a position on what is right and what is wrong, and you need to state this position with the full force of your personality.
Jupiter transiting 2nd House
Having gained tremendous insight into the direction your life is to take, the focus moves on your earning capacity, and you gain a better understanding as to what it takes to strengthen your economy, and what assets you need to develop. This understanding leads to increased personal resources and a broadening of your economic base, which will provide the foundation for increased growth. Guard against over-spending.
Jupiter transiting 3rd House
Once you have learned how to capitalize on your unique resources, then you will need to reach out to others and generally widen your footprint in the environment. This leads to travel and an expansion of your skills educationally. This is a great year to widen your network of contacts. Through increased communication on all levels, you learn how to make sure-footed progress.
Jupiter transiting 4th House
Having developed your education and communication skills, there is an urge to expand your influence and potential on the home front. This brings insight and good fortune connected with property and family, and you can expect considerable expansion in this area. You broaden your emotional foundations, partly because you gain understanding of the influence of your upbringing, and partly because you are curious to learn more about how to create a nurturing and stimulating environment.
Jupiter transiting 5th House
There is a feeling that your emotional base is secure, and at this point you are burning to channel your energy into something creative. You have the confidence to take on much more, whether it is a love relationship, a child or simply a project where you put yourself on the line. Your confidence is at a high point, and you simply have to celebrate your strengths by manifesting your talents.
Jupiter transiting 6th House
After a period of self-realization, you are now more interested into how your talents can be put to good use for the sake of others. You want to understand just how you fit in to the practical scheme of things, and indeed how you can bring more efficiency into that role. You make yourself indispensable in your working relations and generally improve the quality of your everyday life.
Jupiter transiting 7th House
With your working life functioning optimally, you now how an urge to gain insight into important personal relationships, like marriage and business partnerships. Learning to make the right choices and judgments is important to you, and you may have many discussions of principle before getting it right. Still, this is a very fortunate and happy period for both business and love, not least because you meet positive and influential people.
Jupiter transiting 8th House
With important relationships in your life bringing enhanced satisfaction, you realize the need to gain more depth and psychological understanding of issues that are hidden beneath the surface. This is a time when you discover unpleasant truths, yet develop a tolerant and philosophical attitude to them. You discover how much can be gained by sharing, benefit from the generosity of others and can also get involved in large investment projects.
Jupiter transiting 9th House
After a rather heavy emotional period, during which many hopes were dimmed, you now develop a yearning to expand your intellectual horizons either through study or travel. This is an optimistic period when you ask important questions about the meaning and direction of your life, and gain considerable philosophical insight. You will meet wise mentors who broaden your attitude, and help you define your attitude to moral issues, right and wrong and political or cultural matters.
Jupiter transiting 10th House
This is a period when you capitalize on the knowledge and experience you have garnered earlier to make a concrete success of your life. Good fortune smiles on professional endeavors at this time, and you can expand your sphere of influence. Influential people will support you, and if you strive for recognition, you will achieve it. If you go for your hopes and dreams now, then your expectations have a good chance of being fulfilled.
Jupiter transiting 11th House
Having presided over a period of professional success and expansion, you are interested in developing your social and professional relationships and enjoying the benefits of the status you have attained. This leads to an expansion of your social circle, and you will meet influential people who broaden your attitude and define your views. There is a whole new panorama of possibilities regarding your hopes and dreams.
Jupiter transiting 12th House
A cycle of achievement seems to ebb out in this period, as the hopes and dreams of previous years fade. To find new meaning in your life you look within, seeking to understand your place in the broader scheme of things – also spiritually. You discover the inner riches of the imagination, and instinctively understand how all things dissolve with time. You know at this point that happiness is much more than material success.
It is probably true that the condition of Jupiter in the birth chart determines just how many benefits are experienced, when Jupiter transits the 12 houses. But whatever the benefits, Jupiter does not guarantee that they will last. The story of the seven good years and the seven bad years is worth remembering. It is all very well to think positively and go for growth, but unless there is a strategy for consolidating expansion, then there will be no structure to contain that growth when expansion ceases. It is the judicious balance between the positive attitude of Jupiter and Saturn’s skeptical voice of experience that creates lasting growth in the long run.
There is no planet that takes its time quite like Saturn. It never rushes, never accomplishes anything rapidly, always seems to go a little too slowly. From it we learn the qualities of patience, stoicism and perseverance. Time drags on just slow enough for us to actually build something lasting. Any faster and the foundations would not be solid enough. Any slower, and we would give up the struggle. But when Saturn enters Cancer in its 29½ year journey around the Sun, it does seem a little unfair for those souls who are so sensitive to the travails of this planet, namely Capricorns and Aquarians, or those with these two signs particularly strong in their charts. It takes 5 years for Saturn to traverse Cancer and Leo – the opposing signs of Capricorn and Aquarius – and in this long period Saturn it is in its two signs of detriment, weakened and debilitated.
Which really is no fun. For anyone. Saturn in Cancer brought out the worst aspects of nationalism or “patriotism”, and contributed to the urge to fortify or wall in borders to keep foreigners out. Israel walls out the Palestinians, Bush walls out the Mexicans, Europe walls out all those refugees who desperately want to escape chaos in the rest of the world. On a more personal level, the transit of Saturn through Cancer from June 2003 to August 2005 placed its heavy finger on emotional weaknesses especially as regards family duty, bring a time of emotional struggle for those who did not have their house in order. For Capricorns, it emphasized partnership weaknesses and demanded the sacrifice of personal needs in favor of partnership needs. For Aquarians it placed the focus on work, health and employment, forcing them to address deficiencies in this area.
Saturn in Leo has been particularly bad for political leadership in the period from 2005 to 2007. Bush in the USA has lost all his credibility, even amongst Republicans. The swagger of this man, who always seems not quite to be able to fill out his suit, like a small boy, is very characteristic of Saturn in Leo. (Though he has Leo rising and Saturn in fact in Cancer). Tony Blair has squandered massive popularity through lying to himself and to the people. Jacques Chirac in France fumbled through his last weak years of his presidency.
As the new millennium began, Saturn had conjoined Jupiter in Taurus in its twenty-year conjunction cycle with that planet. With a stellium of seven planets in Taurus in May 2000, a completely new economic cycle started with the Dot com crash, which actually also heralded a long period of investment in solid values like property, bringing in time large economic bonuses for sensible souls who owned property.
But the defining moment for the millennium was the opposition of Saturn in Gemini to Pluto in Sagittarius and the destruction of the Twin Towers in New York – the symbol of western economic imperialism. The world was rent asunder. Polarized. Religious fundamentalism was suddenly on the agenda, both that of Islam and that of American neoconservatives. A strange war against an indefinable enemy began – this “war on terrorism”. On the personal front, the Saturn/Pluto opposition brought individual twin-tower crises, as life structures with weak foundations also disintegrated. For Capricorns this particularly affected work structures (6th/12 house), for Aquarians children and social structures (5th/11th house). [See point 1. in graph]
Saturn in Gemini went on to trine Uranus in Aquarius [point 2. in graph] in what was a honeymoon period for Western foreign policy with a broad alliance supportive of American intervention in the aftermath of 9/11. This led to a successful overthrow of the Taliban in Afghanistan and the manipulation of the UN into a half-hearted support of the invasion of Iraq. This was the perfect time for the export of Western democracy. But then Saturn went into Cancer, and things turned sour. Democracy has not proved to sit very well amongst the tribal divisions of Iraq, where clan is far more important than airy concepts of equality.
The next major aspect for Saturn has been the triple opposition to Neptune [point 3. in graph] from Leo to Aquarius. Basically Saturn is on its last legs at this time. Having waded through the mud of Cancer, it is completely defeated by the Neptune’s fog and quicksand. There is only one thing for Saturn to do – roll over and accept defeat. (Though not if you are President Bush… the situation in Iraq can be saved by a “troop surge”. Poor troops.)
On a personal level, circumstances that are seemingly beyond control undermine the situation of the individual in a long and tiring process of dissolution. Being Saturn-ruled, this naturally affects Capricorns and Aquarians most. For Capricorns it is connected with financial, psychological and security issues. For Aquarians, a long drawn out struggle to define the meaning of life, children and relationships is the issue. It is not the worst thing to surrender, or to accept that there are higher forces – karma perhaps – that cannot be avoided. The lesson of Saturn/Neptune is that everything in life is transitory and will be dissolved by time. The kind of acceptance that arises as a consequence is extremely enriching spiritually. As far as the refinement of the soul is concerned, the losers wins, and the winner loses.
At the time of writing (May 2007) Saturn is moving direct in Leo as in trines Jupiter, and things are looking up. Suddenly Saturn-ruled Aquarius and Capricorn start getting the feeling that a 5-year cycle of struggle is about to ease up. The coming trine to Pluto in August 2007 at 26 degrees Leo/Sagittarius marks a Saturn ready to flex its muscles – reborn and ready for a bit of power play. Where Aquarians, with Saturn in their solar 7th house, have had to consistently compromise in relationships and tread real carefully, they will now be prepared to come with an ultimatum if necessary. They are not prepared to be trodden on at this time. Politically, there may be a resolution connected with Iranian nuclear ambitions at this time. Capricorns, who have been going through a period of considerable anxiety with Saturn in their solar 8th house, can expect a powerful emotional catharsis.
When Saturn finally comes into Virgo on September 2nd 2007, there are many who will breathe a collective sigh of relief, as incompetent and over-inflated leaders disappear from the scene, and a new spirit of practical humility takes over. This transition to Virgo is eased by the entrance of Jupiter into Capricorn on December 18th, where it goes on to make a trine to Saturn at 7 degrees in January 2008… just as Pluto moves into Capricorn. Basically this is going to be a wonderfully constructive period – a time to heal and repair. (Though the repeated Mars opposition to Pluto from January – March 2008 points to a crisis in other areas.)
But what a major transition this is for Capricorns, who not only get Jupiter and Pluto entering their sign, but also have Saturn moving out of its most uncomfortable placement in the solar 8th house, and into the optimistic 9th. This will result in a radical lifestyle change, bringing a major focus on foreign countries, international travel and intellectual training. For Aquarians, Saturn’s move into their solar 8th house will highlight working on psychological factors, and worrying about security issues perhaps, but the trine to Jupiter brings a reasonably painless transition, and crucially Saturn has moved out of its opposition placement.
The major event for Saturn in 2008 is its opposition to Uranus – something that takes place only once every 46 years. [See point 4. in graph.] The first opposition takes place at 18 degrees Virgo/Pisces at the time of the US election in November 2008. The aspect repeats in February 2009 at 20 degrees and in September at 24 degrees. Obviously this planetary cycle will evoke changes similar to those in the mid-sixties, notably focus on an enormous generation gap. It will be interesting to see how the virtual world of Uranus in Pisces will collide with the practical world of Saturn in Virgo. Web environments like the video world of YouTube.com will have a huge effect on attitudes. Ultimately the anarchic presentation of material that the TV media prefer to keep hidden, or do not have the resources to show, will completely change the power balance, and have a huge new effect on elections.
For Capricorns this opposition from November 2008 to September 2009, will bring the bridging on worlds on an intellectual level. Radical new educational and communication methods will bring challenges as Capricorns reorient the way they understand their position in the world. New languages, new studies, new countries, international commuting are some of many opportunities. For Aquarians there is a focus on new resources, and a struggle to create economic security with new methods. This will be a time of major psychological challenge and growth, when a balance must be found between the ghosts of the past, and the dreams for the future.
Finally on October 29th 2009 Saturn moves into Libra, where it is exalted. Whatever challenges arise at this time – and a major T-square is approaching involving Uranus, Pluto and Saturn – for Capricorns and Aquarius this will at least be a time when they have strength and dignity. While Saturn was in Cancer and Leo, its debilitated position meant that even if there were relatively good aspects, the benefits would be muted. But when Saturn is exalted, even its difficult aspects will not be enough to throw it off balance. So for Capricorns, when Saturn will be in the solar 10th house and Pluto the solar first, there will be enormous strength and power to recreate ambitions and transform the career to create a new future. For Aquarians, with Saturn now in the solar 9th, there will be a world of new opportunity, where many dreams are fulfilled – not least because of a long-running Jupiter/Neptune conjunction in Aquarius all through 2009.
The first square between Saturn and Pluto takes place in January 2010, and we can expect some pretty major political reorganization at this time. What makes it considerably more spicy, is that Uranus enters fiery Aries, recreating aspect patterns that were dominant in the 1930’s. So in July 2010 there is an extraordinary square from Pluto at 3 Capricorn to a Uranus/Saturn opposition at 0 Aries/Libra. Political unrest will sweep the world at this time, and whilst Saturn in Libra will strive to maintain balance – Congress in the USA will be particularly active trying to mediate between individual extremism and state authority – the long term political prospects seem very messy. In fact Uranus will square Pluto not three times, not five times, but an incredibly seven times between 2012 and 2015, and with Saturn moving into powerful Scorpio at this time, the world will be needing some superheroes.
Crucifixion anyone? Drowning, beating to death, stoning, burning alive, impalement, hanging… many methods have been invented to take the life of humans who have been judged to be criminals by their fellow men. In the past, seeing as there were not so many mass entertainment possibilities, executions were quite an event and drew large crowds. That is not to say many people did not have strong sensitivities – already in the early Middle Ages powerful voices were heard condemning the death penalty in Britain, though there was a resurgence of executions under Henry VIII, when you could get hanged for almost anything, like cutting down a tree. In the USA there were also strong voices against the death penalty, including some of the founding fathers and also Benjamin Franklin. America inherited many of England’s capital offences, and included a few of their own, like stealing grapes and killing chickens.
Nowadays, it is pretty difficult to get yourself executed. First of all, it is no use living in a major democracy; capital punishment was deemed uncivilized decades ago. The USA will do it for you, although there are 12 states that have banned it, including Michigan which did so in 1847 and was indeed the first democracy to do so. In America, Texas is the place to get it done – with over 370 executions since 1976. It helps to be black, though being poor does it too. If you would like to increase the odds of execution Singapore is the country that executes the highest number of people in proportion to the population. Asian countries generally approve of capital punishment, as does the USA where a 2000 international Gallup Poll showed 66% for (in contrast to Western Europe’s 34% for). If you do not want to hang around endlessly on Death Row, the best place is China, where you are executed almost immediately after sentencing. With 3400 executions in 2004, 90% of executions worldwide took place in China. (Note 1)
The execution seen by most people will have been that of Saddam Hussein, thanks to the availability of camera phone video recordings. Google seems to register about 20 million views, so that human tendency to gape at other’s misfortune is still alive and well.
HOROSCOPE: 30.12.2006 6 am Baghdad AS 22.09 SG
One of the main issues at Saddam Hussein’s execution was that of dignity. He was filmed and jeered at, and the trapdoor was activated before he had finished his prayers. As the attendees were mostly Shiites (Hussein was Sunni), it gave a strong impression of revenge rather than justice. Looking at the chart for the moment, Saddam Hussein is represented by Ascendant ruler Jupiter dignified in its own sign, and he was the only one who actually maintained his dignity throughout the process. Mars in Sagittarius square the nodal axis is more associated with revenge than justice. Over the coming two weeks Mars approached Pluto, and at the approximate time of the conjunction, Saddam Hussein’s brother in law was also hanged, and decapitated in the process, again provoking international protest. (Note 2.)
Uranus in Pisces in the 3rd house in Hussein’s execution chart probably symbolizes the use of cell phones to spread the video material, and the square to Jupiter shows how Saddam’s fate became a collective event. The approaching conjunction of Uranus with the nodal axis will bring similar electrifying media events over the coming months.
The issue of executions of this sort is becoming globally relevant now as Pluto, that recently demoted dwarf planet, is at 26 degrees 58 Sagittarius, which is in fact the exact position of the Galactic Center – the conjunction is exact to one or two minutes of arc. Humanity is therefore asking serious questions about the right to take human life. With the arrival of Jupiter in Sagittarius a month prior to Saddam Hussein’s execution, the whole question of international justice and the death penalty is coming to the fore. When Jupiter conjoins Pluto in December 2007 there may be a radical evolution of world opinion regarding the death penalty. With the Olympic Games taking place in China just months after, it could be that the Chinese government would consider it expedient to declare a moratorium on capital punishment for example. The US had a moratorium from 1967 – 1977, but resumed capital punishment after this date. As it is a vote winner in the US, and an election is coming, it is difficult to see any change there at this time, though the example the US sets is used by many other countries to justify their continued policy of execution.
Pluto is also trining Saturn in this period, and this aspect too could hint at restrictions being placed on the taking of life. This trine becomes exact just once – at 26 degrees in August 2007 – again activating the Galactic Center. It is likely that the Saturn/Pluto is related to the use of capital punishment. The 1967 US moratorium took place with these two planets in opposition, whilst when the moratorium ended with the execution of Gary Gilmore on January 17th 1977, Pluto was sextile Saturn within ½ degree. So capital punishment was outlawed with the opposition and allowed again with the sextile.
Perhaps the most significant execution of a head of state was that of Louis XVI in 1793. This took place at the height of the revolution and it naturally sent reverberations throughout the royal families of Europe.
HOROSCOPE: 21.01.1793 10.20 Paris AS 13.22 AR
This execution heralded the end of an era in Europe, and the grand cross involving the Uranus/Pluto opposition and Jupiter in Scorpio with Moon in Taurus shows the terror regime of the time. The judgment of Jupiter in Scorpio was obviously death in this period, where Paris was awash in blood from the guillotine. Here also Saturn is sextile Pluto.
150 years previously at the previous Uranus/Pluto opposition, a similar earth-shaking event took place when Charles 1st of England was beheaded under the new republic of Oliver Cromwell.
HOROSCOPE: 30.01.1649 14.04 London AS 12.11 CN
This chart is even more striking than the Louis XVI execution chart, with a massive grand cross in mutable signs. This time Saturn is in conjunction with Pluto. In both charts the Sun is in Aquarius, and on both occasions it is the people who have taken the power. In this chart the Jupiter/Pluto trine makes a grand trine with the Sun, which shows how ideological enthusiasm triumphs over humanitarian considerations.
These royal executions of the past had huge historical significance, partly because they took place at very significant astrological moments, when rare planetary alignments showed the reversal of heaven and earth, as trends towards democracy unseated the aristocratic power base. The execution of Saddam Hussein can hardly be compared to this, much as he would have liked it to. It could be argued that the dominant astrological trend is the trine of Pluto in Sagittarius to a weak but dictatorial Saturn in Leo, and that with Jupiter in its own sign Sagittarius, justice was done. Perhaps the greater significance of this event is the Jupiter/Uranus square and the role of media in displaying events such as this for all to see. This square seems to have exacerbated the religious divisions in Arab society, rather than bring any form of closure.
In previous historical periods, the general idea was to also inflict as much discomfort as possible when executing criminals. They were really meant to pay for their crimes. In Britain a favorite practice was being hung, drawn and quartered – the idea being that it took a certain amount of time before you actually died. The guillotine was a new democratic method which was meant to reduce the element of pain and revenge. Today this has been perfected in the United States with the injection of poisons. Relatives of the victims are invited to attend so they can attain closure.
The historical trend towards minimizing suffering at execution will in the end eliminate execution. At present surveys show 52% of people in favor of the death penalty worldwide, but in the democracies of Europe and South America, this percentage is 34 and 37 respectively. If western democracy becomes the norm in future societies, the death penalty will ultimately be banned everywhere. For example Russia declared a moratorium on the death penalty in 1999. A New Jersey commission has shown that it is cheaper to imprison a person for life than to have the death penalty. They concluded that executing a small number of persons guilty of murder is not sufficiently compelling to justify the risk of making an irreversible mistake either, as DNA evidence has shown time and again that some convicted murderers simply did not commit the crime.
The question remains: when will there be a worldwide abolition of the death penalty? As I write this question and look at the horary chart that forms as a result, I am struck by the fact that the Sun is at 26.58 Capricorn exactly conjoining the MC. This represents the judgment of society, here the death penalty. As the US (Sibley) Pluto is at 27.33 Capricorn, the horoscope keys in to the anxiety factor in America, which is perhaps a primary reason US citizens are so keen on execution. The media in the USA – Mercury in Cancer opposition Pluto – whips up fear through its sensational reporting of terrible crimes, and this unrestrained sensationalism is a major reason for the proliferation of weapons and their murderous use.
HOROSCOPE: When will capital punishment be abolished? 17.01.2007 12.25 Odense AS 3.46 GE
In the horary chart there is a Pluto/Mars/Moon conjunction in the 8th house– not exactly a life-enhancing combination. This stellium affirms the relevance of the horary question, and as far as Mars in Capricorn is concerned, state execution is a valid punishment. But the Moon is in the same sign as the Sun, and there will be a new moon at 28.41 Capricorn. The fact that the moon is at the end of its cycle could indicate that capital punishment also is. I think therefore that the Pluto return to its 27.33 Capricorn position in the 4th July chart, which will take place in 2022, 15 years from now, will signify the final reckoning regarding the death penalty in the US. And, when the United States abolishes the taking of human life by the state, remaining governments will surely also do so.
Adrian Duncan 17th January 2007
1. Information from www.deathpenaltyinfo.org
2. This execution took place on January 15th at 3.00 a.m.
It should be simple really. We are born completely defenseless and totally dependant on a woman, who dedicates herself more or less completely to our well being, and without whom we would not survive. For the mother we are probably the most precious thing to have ever happened, and she would not hesitate to give her life for us. We hang on to the mother, and are desperate when she disappears from sight. We rule with our screams of displeasure, and demand to have top priority, which 99% of the time we get. We are fed, bathed, smiled at and pampered with gifts – the center of a hive of activity like a queen bee.
Perhaps it is the psychologists who spoiled the picture. For instead of eternal gratefulness, we have managed to identify the mother and father as precisely those people who have thoroughly messed up our lives. Eminem expresses the zeitgeist of the times – albeit in extreme form – with his dismissal of both his parents.
See chart: Eminem, 17th October 1972, Kansas City, Missouri. Time unknown
His Sun and Moon configure with the Saturn/Uranus trine of the time to make a grand trine which was obviously anything but harmonious. Uranus has an agenda with Saturn, and it is not intended to be a traditional parental scene. Eminem – or rather Marshall Mathers (the two “m”s) – was brought up in a mobile home, and expresses it thus:
“I was a baby, maybe I was just a couple of months,
my faggot father must have had his panties up in a bunch,
cause he split,
I wonder if he even kissed me goodbye,
no I don’t on second thought, I just fuckin’ wished he would die…”
So no father at home, then. Which seems to have made Marshall a little angry, with his Mars at the midpoint of and conjoining Uranus/Pluto in Libra. His Sun also conjoins Uranus and is square the Nodes, which might account for the sudden disappearance of the father, who was just 20 when Eminem was born.
His mother obviously struggled to eek out an existence, travelling from trailer park to trailer park. Eminem wants you to see it from his point of view:
“put yourself in my position,
just try to envision witnessin’ your Mama poppin’ prescription pills in the kitchen,
bitchin’ that someone’s always goin’ through her purse and shits missin’,
going through public housing systems, victim of Munchausen’s syndrome…”
Great lyrics, fantastic rhythm – love the song, which is “Cleaning out my closet” from “The Eminem Show” CD. His mother actually sued him for $12 million because he portrayed her as an unstable drug user. She was awarded just $25,000. He probably was a little miffed because of the court case, but it is not like he did not have the money. No stranger to court cases he actually won custody of his daughter from mother Kim, and she now lives with him. Hope he does a good job.
Psychology gets stranded on an uncomfortable premise: that we are formed by nurture rather than nature. In other words the formative influences of the environment after birth – particularly the parents – create the framework of our character. Other psychological views take into account the period of pregnancy. On a scientific level genetics are enrolled as an explanation of family trends and disposition prior to conception, but not behavior. This puts our parents in the firing line.
Astrology of course does not see things like that at all, but recent trends in psychological astrology have tended to enable a transfer of responsibility to the parents rather than the child. It is very disempowering for the person who does this, and can result in misplaced attempts to confront parents with all the things that they did wrong, as if this would change anything. I recall once attending a Buddhist event, where the religious teacher had to deal with a question from a woman in the audience about how she should forgive her mother. First of all the teacher couldn’t understand the question, and it had to be translated several times for him. He finally got it, and chuckled uncontrollably. He pointed out that the need to forgive the mother never occurred in Tibet, where she is the symbol of a beneficent world, love and compassion, and used as such in meditation.
A more empowering view is the idea of attraction, when the disincarnate soul is drawn to the future parents as they have sex, suddenly getting captured into a physical body to begin again the endless cycle of death and rebirth. The bond with the future parents constitutes an irresistible attraction because of many lifetimes of interaction with them, where the roles, according to Buddhism, are often reversed. The soul has already at this point gravitated to what will be the perfect environment for both future development and growth and the settling of old issues. Take note, Marshall.
Armed with this information, the individuals can no longer see themselves as victims of circumstances, but as major protagonists who have a proactive role in shaping their fate. Here lies the key to empowerment, and also the answer to the forgiveness question, which is neither appropriate nor helpful.
Relations with the mother and father are to a large extent related to the Moon and Sun in the horoscope and the major aspects to them. These heavenly bodies represent the filters through which we view our parents, and through which are parents are forced to interact with us. There are two different areas of this interaction, and we are responsible for both. Firstly we may literally have parents that do not treat us well, (though they have given us precious life); here the responsibility is connected with actions in previous existences. Secondly we can make it impossible for parents to interact with us in any other way than our filter dictates. Both cases give access to therapeutic interventions, which may resolve some existential, emotional and identity problems.
Take a child with a Moon/Saturn aspect. The story is often that the mother appeared not to give unconditional love and security. The child grows up early, maybe even feels that it has to take responsibility for the mother in an unhealthy role reversal. There is a deep and unfulfilled hunger for emotional succor. But what is the mother’s story? Perhaps she had to work all hours to support her child and simply did not have any emotional resources left. Perhaps she did try to hug and cuddle the child, but from day one the child mysteriously rebuffed advances. Perhaps early health issues created a situation where the child simply could not be comforted, and this affected the whole future bond. Perhaps the mother was too young to be responsible, or too old to be an enthusiastic mother. Perhaps no one could get through the inherited emotional armor the child brought into this life.
The aspects of Eminem’s Moon to Uranus on one side – trailer park boy – and Saturn on the other actually perfectly reflect the struggle to provide a home in a gypsy-like existence. Moreover, without this upbringing Marshall Mathers would never have been able to reach out to the collective and speak to them:
“I never would have dreamed in a million years I’d see,
so many motherfuckin people who feel like me.
Who share the same views and the same exact beliefs
it’s like a fucking army marchin in back of me.”
Which brings the possibility of a reframe that puts the whole experience of childhood in a different light. Would Eminem have preferred to have been brought up in suburbia and never have reached so many people? This is a question that can be put to everyone with a difficult Saturn aspect – what have they gained through the struggle that they would not be without today?
Every difficult aspect to the Sun and Moon has a disempowering story regarding the parents, and an empowering one. If you take the Sun in Libra conjoining Uranus and squaring the nodal axis in Cancer/Capricorn, this may show a young father – a teenager in this case – fathering a child and suddenly disappearing. No role model here, just a childhood with father figures who come and go as the mother turns her attention to different men. With no male hero to identify with, Marshall Mathers developed an extreme individuality, and he touched the latent extremism in the world’s youth with his wicked rhymes (Mercury in Scorpio). Having a father figure to guide and discipline him would simply not have equipped him for a destiny in which he excoriates all father figures – not least major American politicians and their wives.
Dealing with a client who has a problem with a parent, it works to take a deeper look at the habit of blame, and to replace it with the attitude of personal responsibility. Blame leads nowhere helpful. There is no dignity in it. A woman with a Sun/Pluto aspect may find that the father was remote, or dictatorial, or hidden behind the mask of a newspaper. This person can back up the experience with anecdotes, memories and anything else that will enroll the listener in a view that depicts the father as perpetrator and the person as victim.
Here is another view of this aspect: the father had to work nights in the first year of the childhood. When he tried to relate to the Sun/Pluto child, it was the child who had already performed the emotional amputation, groomed by lifetimes of experiences of trauma and loss of male role models. The residual pain – the abyss in the heart – was activated by the early disappearance of the new father. The only known survival mechanism was pretending the father did not exist. The father wants closeness – even behind the pages of the newspaper – but it is denied. Later in life the young woman is equally unforgiving of men who appear to reject her, overreacts and drops potential male partners before they can hurt her.
In actual fact the woman herself is the architect of her fate, and herein lies a message of hope. Things that are done can be undone. The motivating energy for the survival mechanism of amputation lies in a core of anxiety within. The person must get into touch with this core energy, if behavioral patterns are to be changed.
Psychotherapy can be very cathartic in resolving these issues – indeed there are hardly any other tools to this job. It is natural to go through a process of projection and blame in relation to parents. And some parents have really harmed their children, for example through physical or psychological violence or sexual abuse. No catharsis will be achieved without reliving in full intensity the emotional pain suffered as a child, and this necessitates remembering the anger, hatred or pain. But once these emotions have been burned in the crucible of consciousness, then it serves no further purpose to project the negative emotions any longer.
There are universal spiritual values that go beyond psychotherapeutic tools. Whilst it is tempting to see the experience with the parent as the prime cause of subsequent behavior, the core energy existed before the parental abuse, and was only triggered by it. The individual carries the imprint of the events within at birth, and it is clearly visible in the horoscope.
A therapeutic intervention that takes this into account would use the remembered experience with the parent as the tool for accessing the deeper energy of the astrological pattern that primed the child to have the experience.
For example, a client with a Moon/Pluto square might have experienced a complete alienation from the mother. Tracing this alienation to its apparent source, the client will perhaps recall occasions when the mother froze her out as a form of punishment – acting as if the young child was invisible. The resultant emotional state would have been one of loneliness and dislocation, a sense of non-existence, a feeling of being deprived of the means of survival from the very person who was supposed to ensure ones survival. Only by revisiting this state can some kind of catharsis be achieved that can change grown-up behavioral patterns, and psychotherapy is needed to do this.
However the root energy will be felt in the body – this is the core Moon/Pluto energy which is neither good nor bad in its essence, and it existed at birth before the mother exhibited damaging behavior. The client can be guided into this body experience; perhaps it is felt as a vacuum in the stomach or solar plexus area, or as a knot or pressure. This root physical experience is what gets triggered by events in the outer world, but in childhood and today. By identifying the trigger it is possible to reprogram reactions to it, and thereby get more empowering results in life.
Today society is storing up plenty of material for future generations of children to react to, as work trends involve both parents in the market place from the early hours of the morning, leaving the bringing up of children to state institutions. Guilty parents make up by showering gifts on their neglected children, who are left to the TV and computer screen to form their views of society. It seems almost as if society and the media are supplanting parents as the primary formative influences. We will probably still blame the parents though, until we grow up, earn money, buy all those desirable items, and have children of our own.
Writing sun signs is one of the underrated skills in astrology, and those that have success at it are either very skilled astrologers, or extremely good at hitting the nerve of their readers. Normally both. Famous sun sign astrologers become icons for millions, and these icons can earn a lot of money. One of the most famous in the UK is Jonathan Cainer, who earns well over two million dollars a year from the newspaper who employs him, and the telephone lines to which customers subsequently ring for more information.Understanding the basics of astrology and writing very well are the two prerequisites for success in the field of sun sign astrology, but in this article I will just deal with the first. The basic technique is simply to make an equal house horoscope for each sign, and study the subsequent house placements and aspects of the Sun, Moon and planets. For example all Leos will currently have Saturn in their solar first house of Leo, and Neptune in their solar 7th house of Aquarius, and therefore partnerships will be profoundly affected by the Saturn/Neptune opposition that occurs three times, in August 2006, February 2007 and June 2007.
The Saturn/Neptune opposition last occurred in 1972, so it is a major long-term trend that tends to undermine all forms of structures, bringing an element of chaos and material difficulty. On a high level, it replaces material values with spiritual, and generally it brings sacrifice and loss. A further complication in 2006 is that Jupiter squares both planets from Scorpio, making a fixed T-square of great power. This puts the focus on the difficulties of expansion, and – because Jupiter is in Scorpio – the likelihood of hidden manipulative forces where there are elements of secrecy or even corruption. This T-square culminates in September and October, which is the time when political and economic difficulties will evoke a lot of frustration and despair.
Fortunately, Jupiter moves on into Sagittarius in November 2006, and already in the spring of 2007 it makes a long trine to Saturn, and thereby also resolves many of the difficulties that occurred earlier, and in particular it makes the Saturn/Neptune opposition much easier to deal with. With this in mind, let’s look at how each of the 12 signs will resolve the challenges which they are facing now.
The Saturn/Neptune opposition falls from the 5th to 11th house for Aries, and this shows challenges connected with children, self-projection and creativity. Socially there are circumstances out of Aries’ control, which simply must be accepted. There can be a responsibility for a friend or group, which is difficult to shoulder, or simply a sense of social isolation. The square from Jupiter in Scorpio in the 8th can show compromising economic or sexual factors. This is no time to have a love affair! When Jupiter moves into the 9th, creative blocks are removed and there is a renewed faith in what the future can bring. Difficulties with children and lovers are resolved.
For Taurus the Saturn/Neptune opposition falls from the 4th to the 10th house, showing factors that undermine basic structural systems in life, like the family and the profession. There may be special responsibilities towards parents to be shouldered, or domestic sacrifices to be made. The square from Jupiter in Scorpio in the 7th indicates a deadlock in relations with others, and a total lack of compromise from someone who is not prepared to budge. When Jupiter moves into Sagittarius, the powers that be will be more willing to compromise, and there will at last be both emotional and financial flexibility. This is a time when money becomes available after a period of drought.
In this case the Saturn/Neptune opposition falls from the 3rd to the 9th house, which indicates that there are troubles in the all-important area of communication, travel and education. Doubts regarding education processes can undermine the sense of direction. Sibling problems will seem impossible to resolve. Separations by distance will evoke sadness. The square from Jupiter in the solar 6th house brings ideological confrontation and power battles at work. Very few agreements can be reached at this time. However, when Jupiter moves into the solar 7th, strong partners will be a source of inspiration and provide the encouragement to resolve doubts and disagreements. Everything will be seen in a positive light instead of a negative.
The Saturn/Neptune opposition in this case falls from the 2nd to the 8th house, undermining both the economy and self-worth of the Cancer, and creating a difficult material situation which no amount of hard work can seem to resolve. It is unlikely that banks or other institutions will help, leading to many worries both materially and emotionally. The square from Jupiter in the solar 5th suggests that children, love affairs or failed creative projects may be a black hole that sucks away the resources. When Jupiter moves into Sagittarius, trining Saturn in the Spring of 2007, these matters can again be resolved because of new and beneficial circumstances in the working environment, and perhaps connections with abroad that improve the economy in some way.
With Saturn in this sign, and opposing Neptune in Leo’s 7th house of partnerships, this sign has been feeling the pressure – both in the personal life and relationships – for some time. Self-doubt and a sense of confusion about the life direction has dampened the irrepressible boisterousness of Leo, and a sense of having little control in the development of relationships may give a certain feeling of helplessness. The square from Jupiter in the solar 4th indicates that there is both domestic expansion, but that this does not harmonize with personal and relationship needs. When Jupiter moves into Sagittarius there is a radical change of mood with a creative boost and far better conditions for children, creativity and love.
With Saturn in Virgo’s solar 12th house, Virgos generally are in a withdrawn phase of their life, and the loneliness is increased by the opposition to Neptune in the 6th. Either there are issues at work that create a degree of dissatisfaction and isolation, or the actual daily life is simply difficult to get through, whilst health may also be an issue. The square from Jupiter in the 3rd may be good for the spiritual knowledge that blossoms through isolation, and there can be excellent conditions for psychological insight, but there may also be troubling themes connected with communication, both as regards family and work. Then Jupiter enters Sagittarius and the solar 4th, then far greater satisfaction is felt, and there should be fortunate domestic circumstances and a happier partner.
Saturn in Libra’s solar 11th house shows current difficulties in social relationships, as well as pressure caused by lack of economic resources for professional expansion. The opposition to Neptune may show a long-term challenge connected to a particular friend in need of solace. There may also be a dilemma connected with children that has no easy solution, perhaps because a child is in an unhappy environment. Jupiter in the solar 2nd shows expenses connected with these issues that can drain the economy unless there is considerable restraint. Unnecessary expenditure on prestige items is not the way to go! When Jupiter enters Sagittarius, many of the social difficulties evaporate, and there is a far more outgoing style. This is a time when then can be creative breakthroughs.
With the Saturn/Neptune opposition falling from the 10th to the 4th houses, this is a time of professional power play that absorbs a lot of energy, undermining domestic happiness, as well as making it difficult to advance professionally. The square to Jupiter in Scorpio shows an internalized psychological struggle which is in desperate need of catharsis. Scorpio’s need for personal expansion is prevented by the situation at home and at work. When Jupiter moves into Sagittarius, the professional blockages are removed, and perhaps some kind of promotion or economic boost will happen. At home, new creative possibilities arise.
Jupiter as ruler of Sagittarius is placed in the solar 12th house in this period, bringing an uncharacteristically introverted and even rather sorrowful year until November 2007 in which there can be a lot of self-doubt and broodiness. With the Saturn/Neptune opposition from the 9th to 3rd houses, there is likely to be a conflict of views and opinions with important people which even a Sagittarius cannot handle, which may be a contributing factor to a self-chosen isolation. Travel and education are particularly badly affected by long-term factors that are hard to solve. However the entry of Jupiter into Sagittarius radically changes everything, and there is an emergence of optimism and hope. In 2007 it will be possible to harvest really positive results after the struggles of the previous year.
Saturn in Capricorn’s solar 8th house has brought a period of anxiety for Capricorns, making them particularly sensitive about threats to their status. With Neptune in the 2nd house, the inability to establish a reliable economic framework gives the sense that hard-won professional gains can be swept away by fate. On an emotional level too there is little security as Capricorn is confronted with sexual insecurity, and feels very dependent on the partner. With Jupiter in the solar 11th, there can also be difficult issues with friends that may well have an effect on the economy. This whole T-square in fixed signs may well indicate large scale corruption too. The movement of Jupiter into Sagittarius brings a more philosophical approach to the things Capricorn has no control over, and brings the chance of much greater psychological and spiritual insight.
Neptune in Aquarius’ first house has brought many changes in life quality in recent years and a new creative approach. However the opposition of Saturn in 2006 and 2007 from the solar 7th house shows that Aquarius is compromised by relationships, and somewhat a prisoner of circumstances. This necessitates taking a low profile in relation to others, in effect putting them first. With Jupiter in Scorpio squaring the opposition from the solar 10th, there can be professional expansion, but personal circumstances make it difficult to take advantage of the opportunities. However, when Jupiter moves into the solar 11th house, a far more favorable situation arises, and Aquarius can take full advantage of the expansion of the social sphere that will result. This brings much greater optimism and better circumstances for partnership.
Perhaps Pisces gets through the Saturn/Neptune opposition better than many. Pisces can feel quite comfortable with Neptune in the solar 12th, and the current position of Uranus in the1st trine Jupiter in the 9th brings a dramatic opening of horizons with many travel opportunities. The Saturn/Neptune opposition is an irritation factor because of the gnawing demands of working life, and Pisces will have some difficulty accepting the daily grind when there are so many more exciting perspectives. So there is trouble at work, and these demands put the brakes in many of the hopes and dreams that Pisces has. When Jupiter comes into Sagittarius and the solar 10th house the opportunity comes to translate ideas into achievement. This is the time to get down to work and make dreams into reality.
It is a fortunate thing that the Saturn/Neptune opposition, which starts with a difficult aspect to Jupiter, ends with a positive aspect to an empowered Jupiter in Sagittarius. Politically this has led to a stalemate situation in most areas. The US is mired in Iraq and President Bush is beleaguered. The EU has agreed not to do anything about its political structure, and there is an ingrained resistance to allowing new countries to join. All this will change when Jupiter comes out of the T-square. There will be a new optimism and steps will be taken to expand the EU. Whilst there is no getting away from the troubles of the Saturn/Neptune opposition, for example high prices and the undermining of executive powers, the strong Jupiter will bring hope and a spirit of optimism.
There must be a lot of people with planets in the last 5 degrees of mutable signs who are mightily relieved. Just as Pluto was about to give them some heavy treatment, a bunch of astronomers in Prague stripped it of its planet status, and reduced it to a dwarf. A friend with Moon 27 Sagittarius was on the phone immediately. Now he would not have to move, his family life would not experience meltdown, demons would not arise from the depth of his unconscious and torment him. Pluto, now just a spherical block of ice like so many more in the Kuyper Belt, had just been awarded the same status as the asteroid Ceres, and the next dwarf planet out there, Xena (note 1), which is in fact larger than Pluto.This demotion of a planet is not new. Ceres was discovered in 1801 and was awarded the status of a planet, but as many more asteroids started to be located, then it was demoted again. New astronomical advances have similarly shown many large objects beyond Pluto, and scientists began questioning whether Pluto, which is minute in relation to the gas giants Uranus and Neptune, should really be a planet.
It is relevant to ask: how is Pluto taking all this? The answer is – not very well at all. The evidence of Pluto’s discomfort could be found not far from Prague – in Vienna. On the day before the decision about Pluto’s status was made, Natascha Kampusch escaped from an underground dungeon concealed in the garage of one Wolfgang Priklopil. Kidnapped by this wolfish man at the age of 10, she had been kept as his slave for 8 years. Distracted by his cell phone whilst Natascha was vacuuming his car, he failed to see her make her escape. And when he realized she had done so, he took his black BMW to the nearest railway line, and threw himself under a train.
The story of this abduction and escape riveted Austria, Europe and indeed the world. It had all the elements of a fairy tale. Like Little Red Riding Hood, the girl was wearing a red outfit when dragged off. She dreamed of chopping the Priklopil’s head off with an axe. Wolfgang. But it is of course the mythological symbolism that catches the astrologer’s eye. Just as Pluto ripped Persephone from Demeter’s arms and dragged her into the Underworld, Priklopil dragged Natascha off to his dungeon. She was there for a Venus cycle – the 8 years it takes for Venus to return to its exact phase in relation to the Earth. On her return to the surface, Pluto’s status was diminished, but Demeters’ – Ceres – status was advanced.
So, yes, Pluto experienced some discomfort. But not enough for my friend with the moon at 27 Sagittarius to start celebrating.
It’s an odd thing, but Austrian newspapers at the time triumphantly showed pictures of the passports of both the victim and the perpetrator, and armed with a magnifying glass it was relatively easy to see both their birth dates. A study of the solar horoscopes for them both reveals fascinating information.
Natascha was born around the New Moon in Aquarius with the Sun sextile a Mars/Jupiter trine in fire signs and Venus in Aries. No victim here but a fighter and a winner. As she herself put it in her first address to the media: “He was not my master. I was just as strong… he took on the wrong one (person) — and he and I both knew that.” Obviously having someone like Priklopil as your only companion for 8 formative years is going to mess up relationships, and her Venus in Aries in precise square to Neptune shows her as an angry victim who anyway had to grieve the loss of the only man who she has ever related to in her lonely years in the 9 foot long 6 feet wide dungeon that was her home. As she said: “It was Wolfgang (Priklopil)’s own decision to throw himself under the train. I sympathize with Wolfgang’s mother. I can feel with her and put myself in her position. I, and both of us, think of him”. Well, yes. It must be difficult not to.
It is interesting that someone with such an incredible story is born just a few days after Saturn and Uranus simultaneously entered that sign of hardship – Capricorn. With Mars on the degree of the Galactic Centre and soon to progress onto the Saturn/Uranus conjunction, perhaps it picks up the energy of this black hole at the centre of the Milky Way. Obviously this stellium shows extreme experiences at the hands of men – extreme hardship and extreme cruelty. The only man she has known, and intimately, was a psychopath. Yet at the same time, this powerful Mars, trining Jupiter in Aries, shows someone who combines bravery and spirit with an incredible self-discipline learned from her years of incarceration.
Pluto might be expected to be prominent in her chart; it had just turned retrograde in Scorpio, and Mercury, also retrograde, was to go back to 12 degrees Aquarius to make the exact square to Pluto. There it dwelled in progressed square to Pluto (within a degree) from the age of 3 to the fateful age of 10 at which time she was led underground. Pluto at birth is semisquare Mars, and really this was a time of undiluted horror for her – in a tiny room without windows which she was not allowed out of night or day for the first six months of her captivity.
Interestingly her Ceres is a 17.26 Aquarius conjoining Mercury, and at the exact mid-point of (and precisely septile to) Mars on the one side and Venus on the other. Ceres is the Roman name for the Greek goddess Demeter, who lost her daughter to Hades. The gods intervened and returned Persephone to her mother, but unfortunately she had eaten that fateful fruit of love, the pomegranate, whilst in the arms of Hades, and is condemned to periodically return. Just after progressed Mercury, now direct, conjoins Natascha’s Ceres, she also escapes and is returned to the world.
There is evidence that if you want to escape, it is good to wait for good aspects to come along, rather than bad. When Natascha found the right moment (Note 2), the Sun was at 0.11 Virgo and in precise trine to Uranus and Saturn. The moon was at 26.24 Leo in precise trine to Mars and Jupiter. And for those who are beginning to get interested in Ceres, it was at 17.26 Aquarius at birth and at the moment of escape it was at… 17.26 Aquarius. No orb. One Ceres cycle.
So who is this guy Wolfgang Priklopil, who spent the midnight hours building the concealed dungeon and equipping it with advanced electronic surveillance systems until ready to pounce on his captive?
This is someone who robs innocents from their mothers. Venus is at 19.33 Gemini – just 10 minutes of arc from Ceres. The Mercury/Venus conjunction in Gemini obviously gives a predisposition for schoolgirls. Mercury looks blameless enough, but it actually goes stationary by progression on the Venus/Ceres conjunction, dwelling on them within a degree from the age of 5 to 19. What goes on in these years? Mercury moves from retrograde to direct motion at 11.51 Gemini which is exactly where it is in 1998 when he abducts Natascha. Trine Saturn at 11.21 Aquarius. A great planner. Quincunx Neptune – imaginative. Finally, Wolfgang left this world when progressed Mercury returned to degree of birth Mercury. He did not get very far.
His grand achievement – the abduction – took place as Natascha was going to school on the morning of March 2nd 1998.
Abduction: 3rd March 1998 School start. Vienna
The abduction took place just after a solar eclipse at 7.55 Pisces which was exactly opposite Priklopil’s Pluto. This was his moment of destiny – the time when he took an irrevocable step into the dark side. The eclipse conjoined Jupiter and squared transit Pluto, which at this point was exactly square his natal Pluto. As Priklopil is born with Pluto opposing Jupiter, this was a unique moment. In fact, the astrological detective could – if presented with Priklopil’s date of birth at the time of the abduction – have seen that this was the time when his dark fantasies about imprisoning a schoolgirl would be activated. The abduction chart and the natal chart echo major themes of domination and imprisonment. The fact is detectives visited Priklopil’s house to question him, but never searched it. The abduction also took place with an exact Venus/Mars sextile, echoing the same sextile in Priklopil’s birth chart.
Natascha Kampusch has a lot of catching up to do. She has chosen to limit her contact with her parents, who had divorced prior to her abduction. At present communication with them is limited to the phone. A live interview had the highest viewing figures ever in Austria and generated huge licensing revenue, which Kampusch is reported as having donated to women in need in Africa and Mexico. She has granted other interviews in return for a package including housing support, a long-term job offer, and help with her education. (Note 3) She’ll probably manage all right if her horoscope is anything to go by.
One of the main consequences of the new dwarf planet status of Pluto, is the promotion of Ceres, and the iconic story of Priklopil and Kampusch emphasizes the power of Ceres, making a strong case for its inclusion in the standard astrological chart along with the other major planets. Judging from its effect in this story, and a glance at the charts of people I know well, it seems Ceres is very connected with the mother archetype and the motherhood role. One client I know has Ceres between Uranus and Pluto and claims, because of extreme childhood experiences, that her mother is a psychopath. Another returned to his mother country after many years when his Sun progressed conjoined Ceres. The Greek myth points to the connection of Demeter with famine, and embedded in Ceres is the latent tendency for extreme contrasts between nurture and abandonment and loss.
As regards Pluto there are probably other stories coinciding with the date of its demotion from the pantheon of the gods. As a rule events in the field of astronomy tend to be reflected by events on earth. When Voyager flew past Uranus, the space shuttle Challenger exploded. When Voyager flew by Neptune, millions joined hands across the borders of the Baltic countries, dissolving the borders and the domination of the Soviet Union. The New Horizons space probe (Note 4) will arrive at Pluto in 2015. Expect to see an interesting demonstration of its effect.
As the years go by – if the Prague decison holds – Pluto will be redefined in school text books. It will lose some of its iconic power. Will the atom bomb go the same way as Priklopil? How will psychology fare? But right now it is firmly enconsed in the horoscope, and – sigh of relief – clients are still having traumas and crises. Clearly, as astrologers, we have not lost a planet – we’ve gained two. Now where is Ceres in my horoscope… not to mention Xena!
Adrian Duncan 19th September 2006
1. Xena’s position is currently 21 Aries – noticed anything? – and an ephemeris can be found at www.astro.com