Astrology 101:3—The Planets

What you’re getting here is just the planets and what they represent in astrology, not what each of them does in each sign. That would be way too much for one posticle.

For convenience, astrologers generally refer to all of the relevant moving bodies as ‘planets’. The Sun and Moon are traditionally known as the ‘Lights’ or ‘Luminaries’ but if one is writing about all of them at once it gets a bit wearing to refer to everything separately.

If you know anything about astrology, please don’t be offended if I don’t include your favourite asteroid or similar. I’m dealing with the two Lights and eight planets; nothing smaller than a planet, dwarf or otherwise.

So, getting to the point, what do the planets do? Let’s look at them in order.

s The Sun. Your true personality, the real you. What you’re capable of being and becoming. How you act, especially when seriously out of your comfort zone. Also what you may do creatively or for recreation.

a The Moon. How you react and (sometimes) respond to your surroundings and events. Day to day feelings and moods. Sensitivity or lack thereof.

f Mercury. Thought processes, communication, speech, writing, business, short journeys, games rather than sports.

g Venus. Marriage; romantic, business and pretty much any one-to-one partnership, art, fashion, music, dance, theatre. Also food and sensual pleasures. Fairness.

h Mars. Decision making. Assertiveness, courage, contests, war and military organisations, sport rather than games. Competitiveness.

j Jupiter. Prosperity, growth, abundance, philosophy and religion, lawyers, justice, charity.

Saturn: Understanding, hard work, restrictions, the art of the possible, buildings, agriculture, planning, the Law.

The above are all visible to the naked eye and have been observed for thousands of years. The next three planets were discovered in the last couple of hundred years or so and can only be seen with a telescope. They move much more slowly and affect whole generations and hence are sometimes called ‘transpersonal’ planets.

F Uranus: sudden change, inspiration, earthquakes, crashes. Revelation and revolution.

G Neptune: Our highest ideals, dissolution of the old order, diseases, liquids e.g. oil, mental health and institutions, spirituality.

or J Pluto: Transformation and elimination. Only discovered in 1930 and as it takes about two hundred and fifty years to complete an orbit of the zodiac our knowledge may be regarded as a work in progress. When discovered, Pluto was in Gemini and as it’s only managed to get to Capricorn there’s still a lot of observation to be done.

That’s it for now.

Astrology 101:2 – The Zodiac

The zodiac is the backdrop of star constellations against which the Sun, Moon and planets move as seen from our viewpoint here on Earth. They are listed as follows: Aries (Ram); Taurus (Bull): Gemini (Twins); Cancer (Crab); Leo (Lion); Virgo (Virgin); Libra (Scales); Scorpio (Scorpion); Sagittarius (Centaur); Capricorn (Sea Goat); Aquarius (Water Bearer); Pisces (Fish). Each sign has a (notional) 30 degree piece of the sky which conveniently adds up to a full 360 degree circle. They are the constellations which lie on the plane of the ecliptic along which the Lights and planets move in their annual dance across the heavens.

Please note that there are twelve (12) signs. No more, no less, despite what sceptics like Dara O’Briain, Prof. Brian Cox or NASA might tell you. It’s been twelve signs since the system got started and it will remain that way.

Yes, astrologers know perfectly well that, because of the phenomenon of precession of the equinoxes caused by an endearing little wobble as the Earth rotates about its axis, the zodiacal constellations don’t line up like what they used to. This means that March 21st or so is when the Sun, by observation, moves into Pisces rather than Aries. But there’s a really good reason why that doesn’t matter.

It’s because the astrological signs don’t actually mean anything.

Just like the months on a calendar, the astrological ‘signs’ are convenient ways of marking the passage of the Sun around the Earth. For social and commercial purposes the world standard is the Gregorian calendar which is the one you have hanging on your wall. But there are other calendars in daily use everywhere in the world which have uses for religious observances, local feasts and the like. So Midsummer Day (for the northern hemisphere, anyway) next year falls on June 24th (Gregorian), 11th of Tamuz, 5778 (Jewish), Ding Si day, Ji Wei month, Wu Xu year (Chinese) or, astrologically, 3rd of Cancer. However you measure it, though, it’s still Midsummer Day.

When this astrology thing all started to get organised, it was observed that those born in the thirty-day period following the Spring Equinox tended to have the qualities associated with the local variation of ram. Those born in the following thirty-day period tended to have the qualities of a bull, and so on through the year. That pretty much followed the positions of the corresponding constellations in the zodiac and, given that very few people could read or write, it meant that astrologers could at least tie the days to a system which was illustrated in the sky, along with any necessary explanatory stories to get the point across.

Precession of the equinoxes means that the astrological markers (signs of the zodiac) no longer line up with the observed astronomical ingresses (Technical Term #4). That’s not a problem. In the same way that November is no longer the ninth month of the Gregorian calendar (from the latin novem, nine) but still retains its name, so Aries is still the first ‘month’ of the astrological ‘calendar’. It’s also still the point at which Ariens are born instead of Pisceans.

So let’s have a look at the attributes, for and against, each sign of the zodiac. The symbol next to each name is its ‘glyph’ (Technical Term #5), a sort of astrological shorthand.

x  Aries: Short attention span, great starters but poor finishers, enthusiastic, impulsive, brave but also reckless, selfish, thoughtless, impatient. Quick to anger but over just as quickly.

Taurus: Practical, patient, strong-willed, loves food, luxury and also other sensual pleasures, trustworthy. The downside of that, of course, is that they can be stubborn, greedy and possessive. And very, very lazy.

v   Gemini: Versatile, communicative, witty, lively, rational. Restless, changeable, flippant, inconsistent, superficial.

b  Cancer: Sensitive, sympathetic, imaginative, protective, nurturing, kind, cautious. On the other hand; self-pitying, touchy, unforgiving. A tough exterior can hide a weak character.

n  Leo: Generous, dramatic, enthusiastic, creative, broadminded. Also pompous, conceited, dogmatic, snobbish and possibly tyrannical.

m  Virgo: Analytical, tidy, modest, hard working. Sounds good, doesn’t it? Health conscious bordering on hypochondria, fussy, hypercritical, pedantic. There’s always a downside.

X  Libra: Harmonious, balanced, refined, fair, charming, diplomatic. indecisive, resentful, changeable, flirtatious, gullible.

C  Scorpio: Passionate, secretive, trustworthy, intense, determined. Jealous, scheming, secretive, suspicious. Don’t cross a Scorpio; you’ll be looking over your shoulder until they get their revenge.

V  Sagittarius: Joyful, freedom-loving, sincere, frank, philosophical. Careless, capricious, irresponsible, prone to exaggeration and with a tendency to open his mouth only in order to change feet.

B  Capricorn: Determined, reliable, cautious, disciplined, traditionalist. Mean, rigid, pessimistic, a wet blanket.

N  Aquarius: Independent, friendly, progressive, original, loyal. Eccentric, unpredictable, contrary and yet with fixed opinions.

M  Pisces: Compassionate, sympathetic, intuitive, kind, humble, emotional. Vague, disordered, weak-willed, indecisive.

That is by no means an exhaustive run-down of the twelve signs but it will do to be going on with.

Astrology 101:1

I think it might be a good time to do a series of posticles (posted articles, anyone?) giving some basic pointers to what goes into astrology. So, to use American terminology, welcome to Astrology 101.

To do astrology, the first thing you need is the chart. That’s the circular picture with a bunch of strange symbols, apparently random numbers and some lines connecting various of the strange symbols with one another. It may be called the birth chart, the native chart or the radical chart but it’s the starting point for astrological interpretation—and for budding astrologers.

I’m not going to go into how the chart is calculated. While there were computers which could do the job when I started, it was almost quicker to calculate the thing by hand anyway. Besides, given that the storage medium was the good ol’ floppy disk and computers were neither ubiquitous nor reliable, it was a Good Thing to be able to erect (Technical Term #1) a chart by hand. You just had to be good at sums.

So let’s look at it from the point of view of interpretation. Think of it as a cake with a number of ingredients, all of which are essential to the recipe and each of which has an effect on most, if not all of the others. The seasoned astrologer will be able to look at the chart as a whole and get a picture in his/her/its mind of the overall person, event or whatever entity is being studied and will then start muttering things like, ‘Oh, that’s interesting’ or ‘Hmm, don’t like that’ and if the Native (Technical Term #2) or person-for-whom-the-chart-is-being-read is within earshot, that’s when they start looking for the exit, generally getting nervous or possibly start thinking about making a will.

By the way, if an astrologer says something like, ‘What’s a nice little planet like you doing in a chart like this,’ leave immediately by the nearest exit and then start running. Fast.

So the starting point for this recipe is the ingredients. What you need are; twelve signs, two Lights (Technical Term #3, meaning the Sun and the Moon) and eight planets, twelve Houses, four angles and a minimum of five types of Aspects.

The beginner will look at each ingredient individually—planet in sign, planet in House, aspect from one planet to another—and build a picture from that. A more practiced and experienced astrologer learns to look at those things all at once and synthesise the various (and possibly conflicting) bits and pieces into one part of the whole picture that will indicate the personality of the Native when the process of interpretation is complete.

Right. That will do for now. Next posticle we’ll look at the zodiac in all its twinkly glory.

Triplicities And Quadruplicities

The astrological signs come in four flavours (Fire, Air, Water, Earth, also known as the Quadruplicities) and three characters (Cardinal, Fixed, Mutable aka the Triplicities). Okay, so what does that mean?

Let’s take the flavours first. Any given party is very likely to have a mix of the various signs so we’ll use that as an analogy. So, Fire signs (Aries, Leo, Sagittarius) are generally outgoing, extrovert, generous, cheerful and possibly a bit loud. There’s a tendency towards tactlessness but they are usually fortunate enough to get themselves out of all but the most horrific of messes.

Air signs (Gemini, Libra, Aquarius) are chatterboxes, social butterflies (maybe not so much with Aquarians), intellectual and possibly untidy. They can give the feeling that one is the only person in a whole roomful of people, right up to the point where they move on to the next and one is left feeling ever-so-slightly bereft…

Water signs (Cancer, Scorpio, Pisces) are the feelers of the zodiac. If you see someone tearing up at the mere suggestion of something sad—or happy, for that matter—chances are that there’s Water in that person’s chart and quite probably near the surface—Sun, Moon or Ascendant.

Earth signs (Taurus, Virgo, Capricorn) are mainly practical types. They will quietly beaver away at whatever it is they do and get the job done. At our hypothetical party they will be the ones who take their empty glass back to the kitchen for a refill, rather than just parking it in a place convenient for getting knocked over (smashing optional) and will gather up what they can see and/or carry on the way. They tend to be a bit earnest (Virgo, I’m looking at you) and appear to be rather slow.

The characters (Quadruplicities) can be looked at by using an analogy of the four seasons. Cardinal signs kick things off, get them started, give the initial push; think March (Spring, Aries) June (Summer, Cancer) September (Autumn/Fall, Libra) and December (Winter, Capricorn). Fixed signs take that push and maintain whatever has been started; April, Taurus; July, Leo; October, Scorpio; January, Aquarius. Mutable signs are responsible for winding up the old impetus/season, making it all nice and tidy in preparation for the next one; May, Gemini; August, Virgo; November, Sagittarius; February, Pisces.

 

When You Just Can’t Get Going…

… which is exactly what may happen on Monday (Aug 28th) when the Moon is Void of Course from 10.39am until 8.49pm (both times BST)—in other words, pretty much the whole working day. There’s a couple of doozies in September, too.

Mundane and/or horary astrologers—and those with even a passing interest in same—will have read the term, ‘Void of Course Moon’ and its interpretation, ‘nothing will come of the matter’. To others it may just be an esoteric term to be glossed over. Well, not any more!

The Moon is said to be Void of Course when it has no further major aspects to be made before it leaves a particular sign. Major aspects are conjunctions, oppositions, squares, trines and sextiles. This state of affairs can last from a few seconds up to two and a half days—the approximate time it takes for the Moon to travel completely through one sign. It sounds a bit complicated but it’s actually quite easy once you’ve got your head round it. Let’s look at a couple of examples.

The Moon is ‘Void of Course’ from this point until it enters Sagittarius 14 hours and 42 minutes later.

The Moon is in Scorpio and is square to Uranus over in Aquarius (Figure 1, above). It is at exactly the point of the square—from here the two bodies are separating. Also, from here the Moon is Void of Course because it doesn’t make a major aspect to anything until it enters Sagittarius where, apart from anything else, it has a whole raft of conjunctions in store.

On this particular occasion—it’s a real-world example—the Moon’s VoC period was 14 hours and 42 minutes. The next VoC period—after a conjunction of the Moon with Mercury in Capricorn—was just an hour and 24 minutes.

The two and a half day stretch doesn’t happen often. That occurs when most of the rest of the Zodiacal planets are all in one or two places. Let’s have another look.

This one has to be made-up as a real example isn’t easy to find. So, in Figure 2 put the Moon in Sagittarius. Then stick the Sun, Mercury, Venus, Mars, Uranus and Neptune in Aquarius and, for the sake of argument, Jupiter in Leo, Saturn

Once the Moon’s opposition to Saturn passes exactitude, the Moon is Void of Course until it enters Capricorn and all the way until its’ Aquarius ingress.

in Taurus and Pluto in Sagittarius. So, the Moon’s last aspect is to Saturn at the back end of Sagittarius, at which point it goes Void of Course. It gets into Capricorn a little later—and is Void of Course again immediately because there are no major aspects to be made until it enters Aquarius a couple of days and a bit further on.

So that’s the technical bit over and done with. But what does a Void of Course mean astrologically?

It’s a period when one should do ongoing stuff and get shot of unfinished business. Clearing out, finishing off and planning what to do next is also good. But don’t start any projects, don’t initiate any new schemes. Either they won’t get off the ground at all or they will start and then fizzle out. It’s sort of similar to retrograde Mercury but much shorter and a bit more general.

Ever wonder why that guy you met at the bar/pub/club seemed so promising at the start but any sign of attraction had gone the next day? It has to be said that some blokes should be left in dark places but that’s by the bye; the chances are that the Moon was Void of Course that night and it just wouldn’t work out.

Or the time when everyone in the office really got behind a new idea and pushed—and it still bombed? Either the idea wasn’t as good as it looked or you all got going when the Moon was Void of Course.

One other situation which is specific, I think, for writers, artists, musicians and any other creative types. You may find that doing anything at all is difficult during such a period and I have a theory. Because painting, composing, writing or even throwing a pot is continuous creation, rather than just starting a project and then letting it roll, you may find yourself short of inspiration or unable to settle to a job. I used to wonder why it was that I could stare at a blank piece of paper (nowadays it’s a screen) and get nothing all day—and then be writing furiously from 10pm onwards. Now I’d put it down to a Void of Course Moon period.

That’s apart from those infuriating times when brain-fade is the culprit—or ideas just stay away in droves!

Just in case you’re wondering, one may edit and correct ‘til the cows come home. That’s not creative.

So there you have it. Now you know about Void of Course Moons—and the little table (below) will show you when they are for the next three months so that you can observe and avoid them. But don’t try using them as an excuse for not doing something…

Void of Course Moon Periods September—November 2017
Please note: all times are GMT

From                       To
Date         Time          Date        Time

August 26   5.40am         August 26   8.54am
August 28   9.39am         August 28   7.49pm
August 31   4.43am         August 31   8.20am

September 2 4.31pm        September 2  8.07pm
September 5 5.17am        September 4  5.29am
September 6 8.30pm        September 7  12.02pm
September 9 3.53pm        September 9  4.24pm
September 11 0.55am       September 11 7.30pm
September 13 6.37pm       September 13 10.13pm
September 15 9.24pm       September 16 1.10am
September 18 0.56am       September 18 4.53am
September 20 5.31am       September 20 10.07am
September 22 1.06pm       September 22 5.41pm
September 24 7.34am       September 25 4.02am
September 27 11.09am      September 27 4.25pm
September 30 0.15am       September 30 4.41am

October 2    11.14am      October 2    2.27pm
October 4    7.20am       October 4    8.41pm
October 6    10.39pm      October 6    11.57pm
October 8    1.46pm       October 9    1.46am
October 10   10.26pm      October 11   3.39am
October 13   4.01am       October 13   6.42am
October 15   5.29am       October 15   11.20am
October 17   11.28am      October 17   5.36pm
October 19   7.13pm       October 20   1.42am
October 22   11.36am      October 22   11.58am
October 24   4.46pm       October 25   0.13am
October 27   5.24am       October 27   1.00pm
October 29   4.23pm       October 29   11.47pm

October 31   9.09pm       November 1   6.44am
November 3   3.04am       November 3   9.47am
November 5   9.30am       November 5   10.27am
November 7   10.41am      November 7   10.46am
November 9   5.15am       November 9   12.30pm
November 11  8.57am       November 11  4.42pm
November 13  3.46pm       November 13  11.27pm
November 16  0.51am       November 16  8.20am
November 18  11.43am      November 18  7.00pm
November 21  0.28am       November 21  7.15am
November 23  10.34am      November 23  8.15pm
November 26  2.38am       November 26  8.05am
November 28  12.10pm      November 28  4.31pm
November 30  6.36pm       November 30  8.39pm

Come In, No. 45, Your Time Is Up.

On August 21 2017 there was a Solar Eclipse visible through much of the USA which peaked at 18.26 (6.26pm) GMT. That’s 7.26pm British Summer Time, and variations in the USA on 2.26pm Eastern, 1.26pm Central, 12.26pm Mountain and 11.26am Pacific time. The variations depended on where you (in America) are and whether or not your local State, County or other public body recognises Daylight Saving Time. Like Arizona doesn’t.

That’s nice.

There was also the New Moon in Leo at 18.31 (6.31pm) GMT. I’m sure you can work out when it occurred for your position given the information above. Add one hour for BST, subtract four hours for EST, five for Central and so on.

That’s nice, too.

Just to round things off, the Moon was then Void of Course from 18.31 GMT until 20.26 (8.26pm) GMT when it entered Virgo. That’s plus one hour for BST… oh hang it, you know what to do.

A Void of Course Moon is potentially a bit of a nuisance because you may want to start something, like a project or job that needs doing, based on ‘new moon, new start’. Well, don’t. However, VoC Moons is another article.

Now, please don’t run away with the idea that the eclipse has any extra-special significance just because you were underneath it. Yes, eclipses are special but essentially a Solar eclipse is a New Moon with attitude. The old order may change—somewhat—but not right now. It’s the start of a process rather than the culmination of one.

I’m not going to go through stuff for the whole world because if I did you’d still be reading this next month. So I’ll start with the UK.

 

Eclipse chart (August 21 2017, 6.26 GMT, located London, England) compared to UK chart of the Union of Great Britain and Northern Ireland (January 1 1801, 12.00am, London, England)

UK: To Brexit Or Not To Brexit?

The first thing to note is the constellation in 7th House comprising the Sun, Moon, Mars and the North Node in Leo with retrograde Mercury in Virgo. All except Mercury are making a trine aspect to retrograde Saturn in Sagittarius in the 10th House. The third item to note is the T-square of Venus in Cancer (6th House) to Pluto in Capricorn (12th House) all square to Jupiter in Libra (8th House). Of further interest (to me, anyway, but then I’m pedantic) is that those House positions correspond very closely with those in the UK 1801 chart which is what I’m using for comparison. There’s also Uranus in Aries in the UK’s 2nd House which is exactly trine to the eclipse.

So, what does it mean for the UK? All that going on in the 7th House means that partnerships of all sorts are going to come in for really, really intense scrutiny. Well, yes, that’s happening anyway with Brexit, I hear you say. Yes. But. My impression from this chart is that there will be a change in focus, quietly and in the background, from how to get the UK out of Europe to how to keep it in.

Of course, that means that there will be a lot of shouting from those ‘out’ voters who haven’t actually changed their minds yet. ‘Because there is an indication in the Eclipse chart that such a thing is rather more than a possibility. The Venus-Pluto-Jupiter T-square is another indicator of change but as much a change of heart than anything necessarily visible; this gives me to think that a sort of non-Brexit Brexit is very much on the cards, if not actually a volte-face by everybody (except the die-hards) which sees the UK essentially remaining in the EU. The change of heart is in the Venus-Pluto opposition axis with whatever damage-limitation necessary indicated by Jupiter in Libra in the 8th House, itself a further indicator of change. The Uranus factor is usually revelationary, revolutionary, unexpected or downright weird; in this case, its 2nd House placement may reveal unexpected costs (or possible benefits) for both pro and con Brexit but, either way, it’s very likely to throw a financial spanner in the works somewhere.

None of that will be easy; there will be a lot of shouting about ‘democracy’ and ‘the will of the people’ and it all may lead to the second referendum which everyone wants to avoid. We shall see.

 

Eclipse chart (August 21 2017, 2.26pm EDT, located Washington DC, USA) compared to USA chart of the Declaration of Independence (July 4 1776, 5.10pm Local Mean Time, Philadelphia, Pennsylvania)

USA: Shaking off the DTs

Working out this eclipse vis-a-vis the USA is a bit complicated, not least because we have to look at the Natal chart for its 45th President at the same time. On top of which several charts exist for the USA, owing largely to disputed times for the actual signing of the Declaration of Independence, among other things. I’m using the generally accepted one which is 7/4/76, 5.10pm local time, Philadelphia, Penn. Cover me, I’m going in…

The eclipse constellation of Mars-N. Node-Moon-Sun in Leo with Mercury in Virgo is stuffed into the USA’s 9th House. That’s point one. The Venus-Pluto-Jupiter T-square is, respectively, 8th-2nd-11th Houses. That’s point two. The eclipse takes place in exact opposition to the USA’s Natal Moon and the eclipse Venus is in exact conjunction with the Natal retrograde Mercury. That’s point three. Point four is Saturn in Sagittarius in the Natal 1st House with its trine aspects to Mars, North Node, Sun and Moon. Then there’s another little thing. Uranus in Aries in the Natal 5th House is exactly trine the eclipse. Let’s call that point five.

Short version; some kind of revolution.

The 9th House is about long-distance communication, philosophy and justice. A Solar eclipse in there would indicate change or changes in the Justice system; with a Mars conjunction involved the impetus for change is ramped up; with the eclipse in exact opposition to the Natal Moon in Aquarius (the revolutionary) in the 3rd House the American people, or a significant proportion thereof, is going to have a hissy-fit of monumental proportions and pretty much insist that Justice Must Be Done. Add Uranus in Aries into that and a creative (5th House) means of doing so will be found, right the hell now. For what, and in which field, remains to be seen as this chart is essentially for the USA as the Federal entity, rather than as the several States, and so there is the potential for some local injustice coming to the fore as well as whatever is going on in Washington DC. But it’s DC for which I have set the chart so that’s what I’m looking at. The thing is, this chart could topple a king.

 

Eclipse chart (August 21 2017, 6.26 GMT, located Washington DC) compared to chart for Donald Trump (June 14 1946, 10.54am EDT, New York, New York).

 

The current incumbent of the Oval Office at 1600 Pennsylvania Avenue has Sun in Gemini and Moon in Sagittarius. What you see on the news and in person, however, is the Leo Ascendant.

Leo Ascendant can look like a king; can sound like a king; really, really wants to be a king. But it can’t act like a king, can’t speak like a king and ain’t never gonna be no king. (I have Leo rising—I speak from experience. Add in my Taurus Sun and I can’t be arsed anyway).

As one American phrase puts it, No. 45 is all hat and no cattle.

Sun in Gemini is the speaker who can sway a crowd, but only with slogans, and charm the birds from the trees, but only temporarily. Moon in Sagittarius is capable of proper oratory but Mr. President’s Gemini Sun gets in the way of that with the quick fix (Twitter) rather than the slow burn (government). That Moon position is exactly what’s behind the ‘proclamation by Tweet’ that happens now and again—the Sagittarian propensity for saying the first thing that comes to mind and (usually) ending up with a case of foot in mouth. Trouble is that Sagittarius can also get away with it; but only up to a point.

So the eclipse versus Donald Trump stacks up this way: the eclipsed Sun-Moon conjunction is right on DT’s Ascendant and very close to his Natal Mars; the Pluto-Venus-Jupiter T-square affects his Natal Saturn-Venus conjunction in his 11th House and his 2nd House Jupiter in Libra; Saturn in Sagittarius is exactly (and I mean right on the nose) conjunct his natal Moon; and Uranus in Aries in in Trump’s 9th House.

Oh dear…

Without going into too much detail, as you may be getting bored by now, this could go one of three ways. One is with a gunshot but I don’t think so; the effect of the eclipse on the Federal chart will be that Justice must be seen to be done and an assassination would simply dissipate that into searching for the assassin. Second up is that Mr. Trump is persuaded, by family, friends, business associates or whoever, that he either has to change or resign. Somehow I really don’t see that happening.

But the effect of the eclipse on his Ascendant and Mars is to put out the kingly fire somehow; and the 12th House, among other things, is known as ‘the House of self-undoing’. It’s also associated with mental health. Top of my list are two things; a stroke of sufficient severity to render him permanently incapable of holding office (change imposed from without) or a mental breakdown with the same effect (change from within).

And if things do start to change that way Mr. Pence is going to start thinking that he’s sitting in the catbird seat. Probably not a good idea.

None of this is likely to happen right now. An eclipse, like any other New Moon, sets the scene for what is to come later, usually over the next six to twelve months, so don’t expect radical change just yet. But do expect change, especially in the Justice system and possibly in the political system, including but not limited to an Amendment which makes getting elected an entirely different prospect. You can also expect a change in both the House and the Senate with next year’s mid-term elections.

We will watch with interest. Great interest.

Why I’m Not Worried About Global Warming…

It’s true. Global warming really doesn’t bother me. The fact that the weather is changing somewhat isn’t much of a problem, although it does mean that sometimes I don’t get the grass cut when I want to ‘cos it’s raining and we seem not to get the good ol’ winter freezes that I remember. But that’s the way it is right now and it may get worse. Thing is, global warming isn’t going to go away and the chances are that whatever else the human race does, it’s likely to put an end to this planet sooner or later. Global warming, that is. Mind you, Mother Earth is all we’ve got right now so we should still do the best we can for the old girl.

But I’m still not worried.

By the way, if you’re already working yourself up into a hissy-fit because you think we can save the place and yada-yada-yada, please read the whole piece because I think things will work out—just not the way people expect. Then you can explode all you want.

I subscribe to a school of thinking which believes, for example, that everything in the whole Universe is put in its place by whoever/whatever created it in order to perfect—to become the perfect whatever-it-is. Plants, animals insects, fish, reptiles and all the rest. Everything quietly getting along (depending where it is in the food chain) with its own abilities, skills and specialities.

Then we turn up. Same job—to perfect into the best human race we can be (note that I said ‘human race’ meaning the species as a whole, not individual humans). Good news for us, maybe not so good for the planet.

We’ve come a long way since we branched off from the rest of the primates. Learned to use tools, to make tools, to feed ourselves on an ongoing basis, to use other animals for transport and labour before we worked out how to make machinery to do the same thing. Weapons so that we can hunt for food and, with a bit of adaptation, fight one another, starting on a one-to-one basis and working up to wholesale delivery of mass destruction.

We’ve learned how to live in tribes, in nations, in a civilisation. We’re still finding that difficult, though, given what I see in politics, religion and similar discourse. We keep rubbing one another up the wrong way and eventually it leads to a shouting match (best case) or a punch-up on a scale from individuals to whole nations (worst case).

‘Twas ever thus and it will continue to be thus. At least until the human race (let’s shorten that to HR) grows up.

Going back to that school of thought I mentioned; another of its beliefs/teachings is that the HR, if its evolutionary journey were to be compared against a human life-span, is currently around two years old. Maybe a month or three over that age. Think about the two-year-old toddlers you may have come across…

Wilful, noisy, prone to disobedience, given to tantrums if they don’t get what they want and with a tendency to break their toys on a regular basis, often by using them to hit someone or something. It may be that it is some sort of ‘what happens when I do this?’ experiment, equally it may be simply that hitting something with something else makes a satisfying noise. Then our toddler gets all miffed because the toy doesn’t work any more.

So that, currently, is the state of the HR. And you wonder why it gets into trouble.

And just think how long it’s going to take for the HR to grow up and stop breaking things. And how much longer than that it’s going to take for the HR to perfect.

So we’re going to need a supply of new planets to live on for a long, long time. And the Creator will keep providing them, just like any other parent, because the HR has to learn, just like any other toddler, about the consequences of its actions.

Problem; no planets. Well, there’s Mars but it’s pretty much used up already and anyway, there’s no atmosphere. Not really conducive to the HR’s further development. All the other ones, assuming that we can find the equivalent of Earth orbiting a G-type main-sequence star, are way too far out of reach given current or even foreseeable technology. But there are other ones.

How do we get there? Bit of a poser, that. Depends on your belief system.

If you’re of the opinion that we come from nothing, live our lives and die into nothing then it will be a really long wait for the scientists to find and then create the means to travel to another planet. If your belief is that we come from the Creator, live, die and then go either to Heaven or Hell it’s not really a problem because you’ll be out of it anyway. If, like me, you see reincarnation as a viable option then you’re in with a shout because that’s a really good way of moving people around the Universe without having to worry about the transportation system.

I’m pretty much convinced that this planet is going to be FUBAR, one way or another (global warming, nuclear war, asteroid collision, insert-your-disaster-here), long before the HR gets beyond primary school. I’m also pretty much convinced that the Creator is perfectly well aware of this and has got some nice new toys (sorry, planets) lined up for us to use. Before this one is past saving, some of us will already be on the next place getting it ready for the waves of immigrants to come.

Maybe this Earth is kindergarten. The next one is primary school. And so on. And the human race will continue to use ’em up and wear ’em out until it learns—properly—what “dominion over the Earth” really means.

Meanwhile, I’m still not worried about global warming…

In Your Element

Ever wondered why you tend to burst into tears at the drop of a hat? Or why you are so impulsive? It has to do with the elemental balance in your astrological chart…

So, there are four elements; Fire, Air, Water and Earth. Fire types are impulsive, friendly and generous—and have a bit of a temper. Air signs are the intellectuals who think their way through situations and don’t appear to have much in the way of emotions.

Water people, on the other hand, seem to have nothing but emotion! Give them a Lassie film and you get instant puddle! Whereas the Earth lot are less given to overt displays of anything in particular—they are usually in the shed doing something mysteriously practical or in the kitchen producing something wonderful for supper…

You’ll recognise your type somewhere in here but don’t get the idea that you are looking at your Sun sign. Most of us use our Moons and/or Ascendants most of the time so if you find that you’re the weepy type then it’s a fairly safe bet that you have a Water Moon—Cancer or Pisces being the most likely!

FIRE SIGNS (Aries, Leo, Sagittarius)
You are generally the warm and friendly type, as noted above. In your own ways you tend to be very impulsive; Aries will rush headlong into whatever has piqued her interest, get halfway through and leave it unfinished having discovered a new game to play. Leo is impulsively generous with time and/or money and is likely to throw a party at the drop of a hat. Mind you, that’s so that everyone will know what a wonderful person he is! Not backward in coming forward, Leo! Sagittarius is a traveller and seeker of knowledge and thinks nothing of disappearing to the other side of the world in search of some obscure information to help the latest quest.

Fire types are also passionate; the latest is always the greatest and they’ll love you for ever (or until the next one comes along). That passion also translates into a fiery temper which can be as spectacular as it is short-lived.

The main thing about being around Fire types—you won’t be bored…

AIR SIGNS (Gemini, Libra, Aquarius)
You are the intellectual sort, always on the lookout for information. You’ve all got slightly different ways of using that information, though; Gemini will take it in and then push it out again, rather like a news bulletin on the TV. Libra does essentially the same thing but it’s more like gossip. Libra likes to make things prettier so that sign sort of fancifies things a bit. Neither sign can keep a secret, either. Aquarius uses any information gathered for the benefit of all mankind—but she has her own definition of ‘benefit’ which doesn’t necessarily match anyone else’s.

None of these signs appear to have any emotion that you’d notice. They operate rationally, logically and infuriatingly through their intellect. They all have the capacity for changing their minds and their positions on a given subject and denying that they ever held a different opinion. It’s not worth the argument…

If you like thinking, word games and academic discussion you’ll like the Airy types.

WATER SIGNS (Cancer, Scorpio, Pisces)
You people are all about feelings—and quite a lot about tears! You cry when you’re happy, sad, at weddings, funerals, bar Mitzvahs, baptisms, fireworks displays and an awful lot of movies! You are all comforting, though, in your own ways; Cancer will do ‘Mum’ and make tea and sandwiches, Pisces will empathise (and cry) with you and help you to get over things, Scorpio will plan a good way to get your own back—even if that’s not really the point!

Water signs are protective, of themselves and of others, and if you’re one of their ‘family’ then you’ll be protected and looked after whether you like it or not. They are faithful friends but, should they be crossed, upset or slighted they will take a while to forgive and a long time to forget. In the case of Scorpio, for ‘a long time’ read ‘forever.’

To sample the full range of human emotion, hang out with Water signs. You may not have to think too hard but you’ll need to go away and dry out occasionally…

EARTH SIGNS (Taurus, Virgo, Capricorn)
Unless you happen to be one yourself, you may not find Earth signs terribly interesting. They are not the quickest of beings, either. That doesn’t mean to say that they are dim—far from it—but they don’t believe in doing things quickly, they prefer to do them properly. Taurus takes his time to make things work right and look nice. Virgo takes her time so that the details are correct (to the point, sometimes, that she forgets the overall plan) while Capricorn is concerned that not only should the job be done correctly, it should be seen to be done correctly. Rather a stickler for the rules, Capricorn—but capable of bending or breaking them if the situation demands it.

You are all basically practical people. If you say you’ll do something, it will get done. Reliable and dependable. When faced with a situation you don’t go into a tantrum, emote all over it or talk it to death. You just get it fixed.

Not terribly interesting, no. But the world can’t do without you!

Electional Astrology: In This Case, The Astrology Of An Election

Despite the title of this piece (sorry, couldn’t help it), Electional astrology isn’t actually about elections. It’s a means of predicting the outcome of a choice (as in when one ‘elects’ to do something) like when to start a business, get married or some similar big thing.

In this case, Prime Minister Theresa May ‘elected’ (chose) to hold a General Election on Thursday, June 8th. So we have the date: the time is for when the polls open at 7.00 am BST; the place is the Palace of Westminster as that is the seat of government. It could be a generic ‘London’ but let’s be as accurate as possible about this.

Below is the chart for this particular event. Further down we look at it in some detail.

First, the Ascendant is in Cancer so, as the Moon rules Cancer, it follows that the chart ruler is the Moon. As the Ascendant and 1st House are indicative of the country as a whole, and the Moon denotes the general population, this looks as if The People regard this as an important event. No, make that seriously important. It may be that, as in last year’s referendum, people don’t show up as they don’t think they will make a difference but given the Moon’s chart rulership I don’t think this is likely. The Moon, by virtue of its rulership of the 4th House, also denotes the Opposition in government. The Moon’s placement in this chart and its rulership of the chart gives me to think that the Opposition is in with a much better chance than the normal indicators would suggest.

The Moon is in Sagittarius (knowledge, long-distance travel, justice, philosophy) in the 5th House of creation and recreation. It is making a separating opposition to Mercury (information, communication, short-range travel) in the 11th House (Parliament, especially the Commons, groups and societies in general). In general terms I think that this indicates that the population has stopped listening to slogans, sound-bites and political rhetoric out of Westminster and its inhabitants and wants to know just what is going on. A Sagittarian will go to the ends of the Earth, if necessary, to find out what he wants; this population, especially the younger end, is almost certainly looking beyond the usual stuff and will make up its own mind.

Next up is the Sun. Oh dear…

The Sun represents the Prime Minister, monarch, aristocracy, magistrates, judges and all persons in authority and of distinction. In this case we’ll just stick with the PM. The Sun is in Gemini (see Mercury, above); technically this should be good for getting her message across but Gemini tends either to have a short attention span or works in slogans and sound bites, all rather repetitive. Given the above remarks about the Moon, this probably isn’t going to work very well. On top of that, the Sun’s placement in the 12th House is really, really not helpful, as one of the descriptions for this House is, ‘the House of self-undoing’. It’s also representative of hospitals, charitable institutions, old peoples’ homes and the welfare state. All things that are under serious scrutiny anyway. While the Prime Minister has appeared in public under carefully controlled conditions, for the purposes of this chart (and the Election) she has basically hidden herself away until it’s all over. By the time the polls close the Moon will be making an applying opposition to the Sun; I’m looking at this as my first indicator that there will be a new Parliament.

The Sun makes a trine aspect to retrograde Jupiter (knowledge, long-distance travel, justice, philosophy) in Libra (balance, fairness, the arts, diplomacy) in the 4th House (land, its workers, the population, the Opposition in government). In mundane astrology Jupiter also rules the nation’s wealth and retrograde in this placement that isn’t as good as it could be right now. Jupiter’s applying square to Pluto (transformation, big finance,) in Capricorn (government, trade) in 7th House (foreign affairs, relations with other countries) is pretty much indicative of what this election is about; Brexit. It also shows that whatever the PM says, it’s not going to be easy. Also significant is the Sun’s square to Neptune (socialism and left-wing political ideas generally) in Pisces (compassion, indecision, impracticality) in the 9th House (long-distance communication and travel, religion, churches, law courts) but also in close conjunction to the Midheaven, also in Pisces. The Neptune-Midheaven conjunction is also trine to the Ascendant and, given Neptune’s tendency towards smoke and mirrors, may show that early indicators during the day, as well as previous opinion polls, won’t necessarily be any kind of accurate guide to the eventual outcome. That may also apply to the exit polls but I think it doubtful. It mainly applies to the apparent vagueness of statements made by politicians of any party and also to the machinations of anyone—the press, social media, blokes down the pub—trying to affect the outcome of the election.

Saturn (land-owners, the elderly, epidemics, among other things) is retrograde and in opposition to the Sun in Sagittarius in 6th House (public health, armed forces and police as public servants, civil service). Saturn generally likes things to be seen to be done properly and, in this case, in 6th House is going to be seriously interested in the NHS in particular, although the armed forces, the police, their cutbacks and what should be done about them are also matters of ongoing public concern. As well as that aspect, Saturn is also in opposition to Mars (the military, terrorist attacks, conflicts generally) in Cancer (the Opposition, the population, democracy) in 12th House and trine to Uranus (right-wing politics, individualism, political tension) in Aries (the country as a whole) in 11th House. Saturn and Mars are regarded as malefics (in other words, really not good) while Uranus is the planet of revelation, revolution and sudden change (aka chaos). While this could add up to a lot of trouble, I don’t think that’s likely. Uranus is also conjunct Venus (women, arts, peace and diplomatic solutions) in her rulership, Taurus, (pretty much the same as Venus) in 11th House while Venus is also sextile to Mars. That little combination is likely to soften any revolutionary leanings into a peaceful and practical way of changing things. That’s my second indicator that we’re going to see a change.

Just one extra thing here. The involvement of Uranus in this particular set-up may be responsible for some people going to their polling station with the intention of voting for one party and actually changing their minds during the process. Sudden change…

Having dealt with everything else, we’re left with Mercury. In this case, Mercury represents the popular press and social media. It is in Gemini, which it rules, so it’s quite at home and in the 11th House (see above) which puts it firmly in the driving seat as far as news from Parliament and politicians goes. However, that opposition from the Moon means that the population isn’t necessarily listening to what is being said or, more likely, is looking for answers that don’t come from newspapers and will scour the internet, among other sources, in order to inform its opinion as to what should be done and which way to vote.

In my opinion, the Prime Minister has essentially shot herself in the foot by choosing this date. I think we’ll see a change in Parliament; whether the current Opposition party is invited to form a government or there has to be some sort of coalition remains to be seen but I’m inclined towards the former. I am also of the opinion that even if the current government is returned there may be a new Prime Minister in the near future.

The thing is that astrology, as Maggy and I always say, is what happens when you don’t use your free will. The chart above shows the trend of this election and its likely outcome; what actually happens tomorrow will depend on a large enough body of people exercising their free will, as well as their democratic right, in order to effect the change(s) they want to see. No general election is ever designed to be a fait accompli; what makes it so is apathy on the part of those who can’t be bothered or think that they won’t or don’t make a difference. I do; you do; we all do. Free will rules, not astrology.

Mongrels

All you pure-bred, Right-thinking (that capital letter is deliberate), Britain First, UKIP-voting pure-bred English, think about this.

A very early part of our cultural heritage was from the Celts. They came from Asia, via Europe.

Another large chunk came from the Romans. Central heating, glass in windows, part of the basis for our language. They came from Europe. And they were responsible for naming this collection of islands ‘Britannia’. That’s the Latin root of ‘Britain’.

Then there were the Angles and Saxons, the first of whom actually gave this country its name. As in England. And some more of our language. Basically, the German-based bits. They came from Northern Europe.

Then there were the Vikings. More culture. More language (the east side of England has a lot of Scandinavian in the place-names).

Then came the Normans. Not only did they update our culture, they actually brought along ownership of some choice lands in what is now France. They were responsible for the Romantic (meaning ‘from Rome’, not ‘soppy’) bits of the language. They came from Europe.

OK, so they were all invaders. Over time, though, things settled down and we haven’t been successfully invaded since. But this country has generally been open to letting some in. Like the Huguenots from France, fleeing religious persecution. Or they were imported, like the flax-weavers from Flanders. Or the basis for the present Afro-Caribbean communities who came over in the 1950s and ’60s.

We’ve always been very closely involved with Europe. We even imported two kings—George I from Germany, William III and Mary II (aka ‘William and Mary’) from The Netherlands.

Celtic, Northern European, Scandinavian, Latin, Norman French. And that’s just a thousand years’ worth. Followed up with whoever moved here and stayed and married one of your ancestors and added another strand of DNA into your family. Who’s to say YOU haven’t got a little bit of African, Asian or, dare I say it, Middle Eastern blood in your ancestry?

So all you people who are proud to tick the ‘White British’ box are proudly declaring that you are one of the most mongrel-bred people in the world. ‘Cos that’s what we all are.

Mongrels. Made from immigrants.