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Aspects for the week beginning 27 November 2016

Fidel Castro (1926 – 2016)

“There is often talk of human rights, but it is also necessary to talk of the rights of humanity. Why should some people walk barefoot, so that others can travel in luxurious cars? …Why should some be miserably poor, so that others can be hugely rich”

— Fidel Castro, 1979

Fidel Castro, who died on Friday evening at the age of 90, was an icon to many, but also a pariah to many.  The basis of his iconic status was his achievement of a practical working socialism in his country Cuba, and the basis of his pariah status was his dictatorship.  So we have 9 days’ mourning in Cuba, and celebration of his death among Cuban exiles in Florida.

Birth Chart

Fidel had 6 of his 10 planets in Fixed signs, indicating an extremely strong will.  His Sun was in Leo, the sign of power, in a harsh exact square with Saturn in Scorpio.  He was responsible for many deaths coming into power, but it is claimed that the harsh regime (that of Batista) he replaced was responsible for even greater bloodshed.  Together with comrade Che Guevara (whose iconic status is probably even greater) he shared a “whiff of glamour” (as John Simpson put it): this was due to his Sun conjunct Neptune in Leo.

His Sun was conjunct the Part of Fortune (to 1 deg) in Leo in 2nd House, giving a love of power.  But as a socialist his attitude to money (2nd House issues) was firm, and in some ways dismissive (Neptune in 2nd House).  According to Wikipedia, in the early years of his marriage, “Caring little for money or material goods, Castro failed to pay his bills; his furniture was repossessed and electricity cut off, distressing his wife.”

His Ascendant was in late Gemini, and he was verbose in his speeches, giving speeches which lasted hours, and notoriously boring at that.  John Simpson said he once doorstepped him for a quick interview, which lasted for a full half hour!  His Ascendant ruler Mercury was exactly sextile the Moon, and this gave him the emotional power to add to his speech.  His Moon was square Pluto, adding drama to the emotion.  His Nodal Axis squared the Moon, putting him in touch karmically and psychologically with the mood of the people, whom in his view he served.  Mercury also squared Mars, giving him irritablity and a sharp tongue (the Inner Critic Archetype). According to biographer Leycester Coltman: “Castro was well known for throwing tantrums, and could make ‘snap judgements’ which he refused to back down from”.

His main Archetype, and one that gave him iconic status, was that of Revolutionary.  This is shown in his chart by Uranus right at the top of the chart, cusping the 10th House, and squaring his Ascendant.  It fell in his 9th House, and there was, particularly at the beginning of his career as a revolutionary, a great deal of involvement in the politics of other lands.  The Revolutionary Archetype gave way, during the course of his career, to the Dictator or Tyrant Archetype, and Uranus can be very intransigeant, especially in a chart with 6 Fixed planets (or 7 if you count Chiron in Taurus).

He was able to use his personality in powerful ways, with Venus in a Grand Trine with Saturn and Uranus.

His Mars was wounded by a conjunction with Chiron in Taurus in 11th House, so possibly he had issues of trust.  When he made overtures towards Eisenhower and was spurned, he turned to Russia as an ally.  Jupiter was also square Saturn in his chart, possibly resulting in some inner conflict over decisions.

In matters of religion, Jupiter opposed Neptune, bringing confusion over religion, spirituality and ethics.  When George Bush said after a health scare: “One day the good Lord will take Fidel Castro away” Castro’s retort was: “Now I understand why I survived Bush’s plans and the plans of other presidents who ordered my assassination: the good Lord protected me.” He was an atheist.

Pluto was exactly conjunct the North Node in Cancer in 1st House, a profound and powerful karmic mission connected with his homeland, and with Pluto also trine his Midheaven he was able to use social forces and psychology in his career.  The Pluto/North Node exact conjunction also illustrated the black and white nature of his image.  North Node being trine his Midheaven gave him a strong sense of destiny, and enabled him to combine his career and his karmic mission.

Alliances

Raul Castro

His lifelong supporter was his brother Raul, who took over the reins of power when he became ill in 2008.  Their synastry was one of true brotherhood: Raul’s Sun was trine exactly Fidel’s Moon, Raul’s Mercury was trine exactly Fidel’s Midheaven, Raul’s Pluto was exactly trine Fidel’s Saturn, and exactly trine Fidel’s Midheaven.

Che Guevara

Fidel teamed up with Che Guevara early in his career as a Revolutionary.  Che’s chart is in itself the Revolutionary Archetype par excellence: his Ascendant was exactly conjunct Uranus in Aries – the Archetype of the Revolutionary, the Rebel and the Activist!  Che had Chiron conjunct Venus in Taurus in 2nd House, possibly depicting his socialist ideals.  The two had Pluto exactly conjunct, a shared purpose for their generation.  They had good personal links, but specifically enabled each other’s Revolutionary Activist, with Che’s Mars conjunct exactly Fidel’s Uranus.  Che took up positions in Castro’s government (Governor of the Central Bank and Minister of Industries).

Nelson Mandela

Fidel Castro inspired revolutionaries all over the world, and that included Nelson Mandela.  His armies gave practical help to the ANC in South Africa in the struggle against apartheid, and he and Nelson Mandela became firm friends.  They had a harmonious trine between Mandela’s Venus and Castro’s Jupiter.  Mandela’s Jupiter sextiled Castro’s Chiron, and his Pluto sextiled Castro’s Mars (fighting partners).

History

After a three year guerrilla war, Fidel’s struggles bore fruit on 1st January 1959, when he became leader of Cuba, attempting to form a true socialist state.  Humanitarian reforms for the poor were accompanied by harsh repression of any dissent.  He genuinely looked after the welfare of his poorest citizens in social and health reforms, and in promoting education very successfully.  He was able to do this initially with the country’s economic reserves, but these eventually ran out.

The purpose of the revolution was to free Cuba from U.S. hegemony, and the U.S. tried in vain to unseat him, e.g. during the Bay of Pigs invasion of 1961.  With Saturn sextile exactly his natal Uranus at the time, he found himself defending his Revolution.  Pluto also trined his Mars, supporting his fight.

The ultimate brinkmanship occurred during the Cuban Missile Crisis, when there was a stand off between Kruschev of Russia and John F. Kennedy, President of the U.S.  I was 11 at the time, and remember my father saying “Either this blows over, or we do.”  The source of contention was that Castro had been harbouring Russian missiles on his territory, so his role in the crisis was crucial, and his role in the Cold War too was pivotal historically.  Ultimately, Kruschev relented and the crisis passed.  The transits at the time were very much in favour of the U.S. chart: Neptune was trine the U.S. Sun, Jupiter trine the U.S. Venus, Uranus sextile the U.S. Venus, and Chiron trine the U.S. Jupiter. John F. Kennedy was also favoured by the stars, with Jupiter trine exactly his Pluto (power) and Uranus sextile exactly his Pluto.  Cuba was then boycotted economically for 50 years by the west, which kept its citizens in poverty, but they were looked after by the welfare state Castro had created.  Russia continued to support Cuba by buying its sugar.

“We do not have a smidgen of capitalism or neo-liberalism. We are facing a world completely ruled by neo-liberalism and capitalism. This does not mean that we are going to surrender. It means that we have to adapt to the reality of that world. That is what we are doing, with great equanimity, without giving up our ideals, our goals”

— Fidel Castro

Resignation

The resignation after ill health which came in 2008 when his brother Raul took over was registered in his chart by Jupiter on his South Node in 7th House – a karmic take over by a close relation.  Neptune (ill health) was on his Jupiter, and Pluto trine his Chiron, signalling big changes.

Rapprochement with U.S.

At Nelson Mandela’s memorial, President Obama seized the opportunity to shake the hand of Raul Castro, and cordial relations were resumed after such a long dispute.  Pluto (transformation and rebirth) was conjunct the Sun of Cuba’s chart.  Uranus (planet of surprise) was exactly sextile Raul’s natal Sun.  Donald Trump’s attitude to Cuba and Fidel Castro was summed up in his reaction to Castro’s death: “The world marks the passing of a brutal dictator who oppressed his own people for nearly six decades. Fidel Castro’s legacy is one of firing squads, theft, unimaginable suffering, poverty and the denial of fundamental human rights.”  When inaugurated, he may well reverse the current position on relations with Cuba. At this time, Jupiter is sextile Cuba’s Uranus, bringing a new kind of freedom, and Saturn sextiles its Ascendant/North Node, necessitating decisions about its future.

Death

His death at 22.29 Hrs in Havana on 25/11/16 at the age of 90, occurred with Pluto exactly opposite his Pluto.  Jupiter was also exactly square his natal Pluto.  At the time of death, the Ascendant at 10 deg Leo was exactly conjunct his Ascendant ruler Mercury, so there may have been an element of consciousness about the timing.  The Ascendant was also sextile exactly his natal Moon in Libra in his 4th House.  It is interesting that this unique and most polarizing character died the day after the very polarizing Jupiter-Pluto square.

Aspects

We have a New Moon to look forward to this week, on Tuesday (29th) at 12.18 Hrs in the U.K.  This conjunction of the Sun and Moon takes place at 7 degrees Sagittarius, if you are locating that in your birth chart in order to pinpoint where your optimum intent may lie.  If you do not know its position in your chart, then your intentions can best flow with those issues pertaining to Sagittarius: global healing, positive thought, philosophy, sport, animal welfare and religion.  You may detect an added frisson and passion by virtue of the fact that the New Moon will be conjunct the asteroid Juno.

In the evening, Venus squares Uranus, and that may produce social quirks in your life, and could bring unusual encounters, e.g. people you may be avoiding. This aspect may also give rise to unusual artforms, such as clashing colours in painting, or discords in music.

As we enter December we have the Sun square Neptune early in the morning of Thursday 1st, which could cause a bout of sleeplessness for some and confusion about direction in life.  A lot of tossing and turning on every level.  So it is a day to try and centre yourself, perhaps start with meditation and retain your core sense of self.

Aspects are brighter and easier for the rest of the week: Friday 2nd December, again in the early hours,  brings a trine between Mars and Jupiter.  That is a really go ahead vibe, especially for active projects, optimism, sporting interests, and travel.  Enthusiasm and energy abound.  It also supports people who need to stand up for themselves, if that speaks to your condition currently.

In the evening, Mercury enters Capricorn, and enthusiastic ideas get the nudge to practical manifestation.  You have honed the theory under Mercury in Sagittarius, now walk the walk.  But do it before 19th December, when Mercury goes retrograde, or you may find yourself stuck in the pre-Christmas stupor.

Lastly, on Saturday 3rd December at lunchtime Mars sextiles Saturn, which is another call to practical action.  If you have been nagging yourself on the clutter clearing front, just listen to yourself, and act on what you hear.  A good clear out before Christmas could be just what you need.  Any other practical or active project or plan may also benefit from this aspect.  You could feel that you are making headway by the end of the week.

The week in bullet points:

  • Tuesday – new beginning all round, then social awkwardness
  • Thursday – foggy outlook
  • Friday – go for it!  Put things into practice
  • Saturday – solid work

Aspects for the week beginning 20 November 2016

Jupiter Square Pluto

The major square between Jupiter and Pluto occurs late on Thursday evening, and its effects may also be noticeable during the day on Friday.  You may have been feeling its pressure building up over the last week or so.  It represents power issues and power struggles, and the abuses of power.

I believe its effects have cast a shadow a bit further back in time, for the election of Donald Trump in the U.S. Presidential election, was very much a Jupiter-square-Pluto event.  It was explosive, dramatic, and concerned the exaggeration of truth and power.  The consequences are huge.  We may see a climax in the reaction to this event on Thursday and into Friday (Thursday in the U.S., Friday in Australia).  Donald Trump may announce an outrageous policy or appointment around that time.

Pluto impacting on Jupiter in this way causes wild energy to go rampant, and Jupiter impacting on Pluto in this way causes an exaggeration of power, arrogance, and lack of concern for consequences.

This aspect last occurred 6 years ago, in 2010, and at the time I focussed on the division between religion (Jupiter) and atheism.  I wrote:

“The Jupiter square Pluto experience  will challenge us to define our faiths, beliefs and choices.  We are likely to meet extremes, and choose between the light, the dark or the middle way.  All roads will eventually lead home, but some routes are more circuitous than others, and some consequences take more than one lifetime to undo.  Whether we use the prop of the Divine, or go it alone, that is the question.”

The first pass of the square occurred in July, and the second pass in August, when I noted:

“The dramatic event of last week fell between the aspect of  Jupiter in Aries (the individual, Julian Assange, WikiLeaks) square (versus) Pluto (the Institution: United States, Defence) with Pluto also representing the uncovering of information…”

Jupiter is in a different sign this time, having been in Aries squaring Pluto in Capricorn in 2010, and now in Libra squaring Pluto in Capricorn.  The current situation in the Middle East, which became inflamed during the Arab Springs which began in 2010, is certainly due for some of the peace-promoting potential of Jupiter in Libra, but the square that occurs this week is more likely to bring about some brinkmanship, e.g. between Russia and the west during this period.  Ironically, Donald Trump cosying up to Vladimir Putin of Russia has a temporary effect of looking like the U.S. could be in accord with Russia, at least from Trump’s inauguration in January.  So things are confused and in a state of flux right now between Obama’s policies and Trump’s intended reversal of policies when he takes over, e.g. non-interference abroad.

Those parties who are prone to unpredictability and volatility, such as the Donald Trumps of this world, are more likely to cause problems under this square than those who are more level headed and measured in their approach, such as the Angela Merkels of this world.

We have seen in the U.K. stark divisions in our society this year, between the haves and have nots, the Remainers and the Brexiters, the Corbynistas and the Blairites.  Brexiters have accused Remainers of labelling them as racist or stupid.  Scotland is still at sea about whether or not to stay within the U.K., especially after the U.K. overall voted to come out of the European Community.  Jupiter square Pluto represents these divisions coming to a head.  As Hillary Clinton won the Popular vote in the U.S. election, the divisions between those who welcome a Trump Presidency and those who don’t are equally polarized and creating high passions and divisions.  Donald Trump has allowed the feelings of racism and misogyny to re-surface where they had been suppressed.

This has been a year when, due to political elections, people have made their choices of conscience, and what seems negative to one side seems positive to the other, but was consistent both sides of the Atlantic.  It is not beyond the bounds of possibility that France could elect Marine le Pen of the Front National along the same lines, and the European Union may break up.  But people have been invited to choose, and they have decided.  In religious or biblical terms, this is the “day of judgement” or “sword of cleavage”, or the “separation of the sheep from the goats”, the light versus the darkness.  And this Jupiter-Pluto square is that type of energy.  The new buzz word for this year is “Post-Truth”.*

So in our personal lives, it is a good time to search your conscience, and make decisions based on your best ideals, or practicalities if you are more of a pragmatist.  Unless you are a hot headed type (a Donald Trump) make your decisions coolly (a la Angela Merkel).  You know what the big issues are currently in your life, and if you know what Houses this square falls into in your birth chart (15 degrees Libra for Jupiter, and 15 degrees Capricorn for Pluto), you may fine tune the areas of you life affected.  The 48% who voted for Brexit in the U.K. are currently having to work out what to do with their despair – some are in denial, and trying to engineer another referendum, some are getting more involved with politics to make a difference, or continuing to work in social ways or with charities to reverse issues of poverty and raise awareness.  In the U.S. those who wanted a Democratic President, or a non-Trump President, are also trying to come to terms with the fact that not only will progress be halted in a number of ways, but that gains made in the last few years may be reversed, such as racial equality or LGBT rights.  It is probably too early to decide what can be done in this situation, but this week may be a galvanizing force in that respect.  It would be a confrontational week for action, but it is always a good time to improve the mindset and the quality of thought, and set intentions in the direction you want to go, however difficult the times are.

*from The Guardian:

“In the era of Donald Trump and Brexit, Oxford Dictionaries has declared ‘post-truth’ to be its international word of the year.”

from Wikipedia:

Post-truth politics (also called post-factual politics) is a political culture in which debate is framed largely by appeals to emotion disconnected from the details of policy, and by the repeated assertion of talking points to which factual rebuttals are ignored. Post-truth differs from traditional contesting and falsifying of truth by rendering it of “secondary” importance.

Aspects

This is a week of turbulence, but it is a week which also has its up sides.  This morning, in the early hours, Neptune turned direct.  You may have let out a sigh of relief, realizing that your spiritual ideals and efforts may have recently been honoured, and you are embarking on a new phase of spiritual progress.  Under Neptune in Pisces, a new voyage of the spirit is under way, or a new phase of the voyage since Neptune set sail in Pisces (February 2012).  Mysteries may be solved, and things lost may be found again.  Some confusions may start to clear.

Tomorrow evening (Monday 21st) the Sun enters Sagittarius, in time to lift spirits for the Christmas home run.  As in the Tesco advert currently running, you might start to feel “bring it on”!  You’ve already surrendered to the cold Autumn mists, and the Christmas lights may be switched on for you, internally.

Tuesday (22nd) is one of the highlights of the week, with a sextile between Mercury and Jupiter.  It is especially good for Christmas shopping, or any other forms of business, sales and exchanges.  It is good for travel, and holiday plans, and all types of communication and learning.  Positive thought and intent are also supported by this aspect.

On Wednesday (23rd) Mercury conjuncts Saturn, so there may be pressure to knuckle down to decisions and paperwork, and if you have been weaving optimistic plans the previous day, to try and pin down  that travel schedule or tour operator, clinch that business deal (unlike on the Apprentice last week where they shook hands and hoped for the best…), and generally try to close loopholes and prevent losses stealing on gains previously made.  It may take some hard work, but it can be done.

The Autumn Statement by the Chancellor of the Exchequer is due to take place that day in the U.K., and may well be disappointing.  Though the new Conservative regime under Theresa May know it is important to curry favour with the public at this time (and avoid an early general election), the Chancellor Philip Hammond in the effort not to fall out with anyone may end up not pleasing anybody.  Mercury conjunct Saturn is quite an austere aspect, and may not reverse much of the austerity of the previous regime under George Osborne.  As if to emphasize the point, the Mercury/Saturn conjunction falls exactly on Philip Hammond’s North Node, so he may be aware of the karma around this, but feel his hands are tied for some reason, to do the honourable thing.  On the Andrew Marr sofa this morning he had a brief but heated debate with the Shadow Chancellor John McDonnell who wanted him to change course, but he did not seem like he was for turning.  I would love some Christmas cheer for the N.H.S. but it may be business as usual.

Thursday (24th) is the most important day of the week, with the previously described square of Jupiter and Pluto building up, and peaking late evening in the U.K.  As mentioned, the consequences may be more apparent on the Friday.  Some of the implications from the Autumn Statement may cause heated debate, and may be just as divisive as ever, and not as healing as hoped for the disenfranchised sections of society.  Clashes of interest and power are likely to be manifest on all levels, from the international to the personal level.  The peak of this will at least clarify what you are contending with, e.g. you might find out what someone really thinks about your cherished plan, or where their interests really lie.  Again, as in the EU referendum and the US Presidential election, one man’s meat seems like another man’s poison.  It is difficult to see the whole, or unify it all, or bring both sides together, but at the end of the day we are all one humanity on this globe, and we have to find a collective way through.

Friday (25th) initially it may seem you are picking up the pieces, and trying to make sense of divisions, with Venus conjunct Pluto.  Love is the starting point, and seeing where compassion lies in the situation. Finance and relationships are under an intense spotlight, and temporary negotiations may yield plasters for bruised egos.

But as the day wears on, humour may even help, or save the day, with Venus squaring Jupiter.  There could be awkward social situations or gaffes, but laughter could bring release from tension.  Even silliness may be advised.  Some lightness may be achieved.

Saturday (26th) begins with a square between Mercury and Chiron, and health concerns may be a focus.  But solutions may be found quickly, if you dig deep, or make use of resources to hand.  Your mind may be geared to problem-solving, and you could surprise yourself.

Finally, Mercury trines Uranus and around lunchtime, you may find you have achieved a major turnaround in circumstances, by the use of intuition, vision, and ingenuity.  Bright ideas will be plentiful, and where two or more are gathered ideas can spark between you, bringing enough illumination to see you through the weekend and insight to reflect on your current path.

The week in bullet points:

  • Today – spiritual progress
  • Tomorrow – raising spirits
  • Tuesday – best day
  • Wednesday – hard slog
  • Thursday – power struggles
  • Friday – from the ridiculous to the sublime
  • Saturday – from problems to solutions

Aspects for the week beginning 13 November 2016

Leonard Cohen (1934 – 2016)

But let’s not talk of love or chains and things we can’t untie

Your eyes are soft with sorrow
Hey, that’s no way to say goodbye”

Poet and singer-songwriter Leonard Cohen died this week, providing an emotional distraction from the election of Donald Trump to the U.S. Presidency.  Though he died on Monday 7th November, his death was not announced until Thursday 10th, the day after the election results.

His music meant a lot to me, as to many of my generation and subsequent generations, and evokes memories.  I was at University when I first heard and loved his voice.  A friend dubbed us the “Sisters of Mercy”.  When I heard later that some thought his gravel-like sound to be droning worthy of party music (not), I was shocked.  It had never occurred to me that this serious tone, almost a default position for teenage angst, was anything other than uplifting.  But, like Bob Dylan, he was a poet and his songs were popularized by others, such as Judy Collins.  One of my closest friends had daughters named Suzanne and Marianne, which I found inspirational.  Later still, coming into the 21st Century, I remember a highlight of “Sound Pod” with voice coach Felicity Cook, singing “Hallelujah” together with Sarah.

Birth Chart

Leonard Cohen had Sun exactly conjunct Ascendant in late Virgo, the Sun being in the 12th House, and there was a basic shyness and reclusiveness in his nature.  He also had the Virgoan penchant for neatness and order, and was usually immaculately dressed.  The Sun on the Ascendant gave him the Creator Archetype (supported by North Node in his 5th House).  He was also very industrious and perfectionistic, and would often record a song many times over before he produced a version which was to his satisfaction, or “true”, as he put it.

His Moon was conjunct exactly the Part of Fortune in Pisces in his 6th House.  Though he lost his father at the age of 9, his mother was always a great influence.  The Moon describes his mother well: dramatic, joyful and sensitive.  The Moon/Part of Fortune in 6th House also describes his habit of using drugs, often employing acid or speed to finish a creative project.  When asked “Your songs don’t sound like they come from a man on amphetamines” he replied “Well my processes, mental and physical, are so slow that speed brought me up to the normal tempo”.*

His Mercury was sextile Mars and at McGill University, he excelled at debate.  Saturn was also trine his natal Mercury, resulting in a lifetime application in study.

Venus in his chart was conjunct exactly Neptune, showing exquisite musicality, in his 12th House of subconscious and dreams.  This also describes his renunciation of the world in a Zen monastery for many years.

His Mars in Leo was hedonistic.  His friend Irving Layton described “a strong streak of hedonism” going on to say “it’s because the artist is dedicated to pleasure and bringing pleasure to others particularly.”*

His Mars was conjunct South Node, which also gave him the Warrior Archetype, brought through from past lives.  He went to Cuba in his youth and was there during the Bay of Pigs invasion, which partly disillusioned him about the effects of revolution (he had Saturn in Aquarius natally, and at the time of his trip Saturn was opposing his natal Uranus, planet of revolution).  He was drawn to warfare, at least at this phase of his life:

*” I was very interested in what it really meant for a man to carry arms and kill other men, and how attracted I was exactly to that process. That’s getting close to the truth. The real truth is I wanted to kill or be killed”.

Early Influences

Leonard was brought up as a Jew, and the bible was an early linguistic influence from which he drew richly.  He was part of a literary and poetic circle in Montreal.

He was largely self-taught as a guitarist, but learned six chords at the age of 16 from a fleeting contact with a Spaniard who played flamenco. *”It was those six chords, it was that guitar pattern, that has been the basis of all my songs, and of all my music”.

Muses

Suzanne

“Suzanne” was the song that really made his name, when recorded by Judy Collins.  On his greatest hits album he wrote, “Everything happened just as it was put down. She was the wife of a man I knew. Her hospitality was immaculate”.  She was the first of two Suzannes in his life, the second being the mother of his children (Suzanne Elrod).  The earlier Suzanne was Suzanne Verdal, who was shocked when she discovered he had written a song about their relationship.  Her own verdict was “Ours was a soul connection as far as I was concerned”*.

Marianne

Marianne Ihlen was a Norwegian, who lived with him on and off for many years on the Greek Island of Hydra, where he spent many of his most fruitfully creative periods, and you can hear Greek rhythms in some of his songs.  He was able to buy a house there with a legacy from his grandmother in 1960, with Jupiter sextile his natal Jupiter in 1st House, and Saturn trine his Venus/Neptune in Capricorn in his 4th House of Home.  Theirs was a long relationship, but not without unfaithfulness on his part (he was a commitment-phobe).  But their astrological compatibility was excellent: Suns trine at the end of Virgo and Taurus; her Sun sextile exactly his Pluto; her Moon exactly sextile his Sun/Ascendant; their Mercuries exactly trine.

“Well you know that I love to live with you,
but you make me forget so very much.
I forget to pray for the angels
and then the angels forget to pray for us.”

Friendship

With Mars in his 11th House, Leonard Cohen very much enjoyed male camaraderie all his life.  Two friendships with women are particularly worthy of mention:

Judy Collins

Judy Collins, as had already been mentioned, originally recorded “Suzanne” in November 1966, and regularly championed his work.  She beckoned a very hesitant Leonard Cohen on stage with her at a benefit concert in New York at the beginning of 1967, which encouraged his performing side.  Her Jupiter is on his Descendant, opposite his Sun.  In her autobiography, she wrote: “His songs carried me through dark years like mantras or stones that you hold in your hand while the sun rises or the fire burns”.

Jennifer Warnes

Jennifer Warnes performed as a backing singer to Leonard in later years, and played a very supportive role as a close friend generally during those years.  Her role is shown by her Venus/Jupiter exactly trine his Sun/Ascendant; her Uranus trine exactly his Mercury (on his wavelength) and her Neptune trine exactly his Chiron. Describing a life deeply felt, Jennifer Warnes has said “Leonard acknowledges that the whole act of living contains immense amounts of sorrow and hopelessness and despair; and also passion, high hopes, deep love, and eternal love.”

Hallelujah

The song Hallelujah first appeared on the album “Various Positions” in 1984.  It has been recorded by at least 200 artists, and Cohen wrote 15 verses for it.  The most notable version, apart from his own, was by the iconic Jeff Buckley.  It is also quite a mystery, and Leonard himself did not have very much faith in its potential originally.  K.D. Lang has said: *”It just has so much fodder, so much density, it can be deep, simple, mean a lot of things to different people, there’s so much in it”.

Religion

Leonard Cohen explored religion generally, and although Judaism was a source of inspiration to him, he flirted with Scientology and came to think of himself as a Buddhist.  Just this morning I watched an hour long documentary about the Tibetan Book of the Dead, which he narrated.  But he is most associated with Zen Buddhism, and spent several years in retreat in a Zen monastery on Mount Baldy in California, under the tutelage of Zen Master Roshi Kyozan Joshu Sasaki.  Their synastry is instructive: Kyozan’s Mars trines exactly Cohen Uranus in Taurus in 8th House of Spirituality; Kyozan’s Uranus trines Leonard’s Venus/Neptune in Virgo in 12th House of Seclusion, and Kyozan’s Pluto trine Leonard Saturn in Aquarius in 5th House – a very deep bond.

Finance

He signed away the rights to the song “Suzanne” early in his career, but most dramatically in 2004 his daughter Lorca discovered that Leonard’s financial advisor Kelley Lynch had fleeced his bank accounts.  At the time, Saturn was square his Venus/Neptune (realization of financial deception), but Jupiter was trine his North Node (it fortunately came to light).  He decided to go on tour, late in his years, in order to recoup his financial standing.  Jupiter square Pluto in his natal chart describes the terrific power struggles of his life and psyche, of which this episode was one.

Viva

Leonard leaves behind a son Adam, and a daughter Lorca (named after the poet whom he admired).  He also has a grandson Cassius (from Adam) and a granddaughter Viva (from Lorca).  Viva is the product of two musical dynasties in Montreal.  The singer-songwriter Rufus Wainwright, son of Loudon Wainwright III, met Lorca growing up as teenagers, and although Rufus is married to Jorn Weisbrodt, such was the depth of their friendship that Lorca asked Rufus to be the father of her child.  So it is that Leonard Cohen’s genetic inheritance lives on in this unusual way, in a child who may be gifted musically.

Death

When Marianne died on 28th July this year, Leonard wrote her an open letter, saying “… Our bodies are falling apart and I think I will follow you very soon. Know that I am so close behind you that if you stretch out your hand, I think you can reach mine.”

He died on 7th November, having just completed his latest album “You Want it Darker”, which he was perfecting.   Uranus was sextile exactly his Saturn, giving a sense of accomplishment, but Neptune was square exactly his Chiron, a sense of goodbye.

* “There’s a certain kind of writer that says hello to people in their songs and there’s a certain kind of writer that says goodbye to people – and you know I’m more a writer of elegies”

~ Leonard Cohen

*Quotations which are from “I’m Your Man” by Sylvie Simmons 2012, drawn from private archives

 

Aspects

We begin this week with a Full Moon at 22 degrees Taurus tomorrow (Monday 14th November).  Though it opposes the Sun in Scorpio, Moon in Taurus is more stable than in other signs, and we have the added interest of it being a Supermoon (when the Moon is closest to the Earth, and therefore appearing larger than usual).

Tuesday (15th) brings a sextile between Mercury and Mars, when fine words may butter parsnips.  It is a good day for activity, communication, and all combinations of the two.  Note that Leonard Cohen had Mercury sextile Mars natally, and as well as being a wordsmith he had a talent for debate.  So keen debate may also be a feature of the day.

Thursday (17th) begins a couple of days of karmic consideration, with Neptune on the South Node at 9 degrees Pisces.  You may connect with a feeling of wanting more seclusion to ponder, or wanting to connect with your spirituality, and this may take you back to past lives spent in this mode.

Friday (18th) may be just as karmic, but initially slightly less introspective and more communicative, with Mercury squaring the Nodal Axis.  Your impressions and dreams from Thursday may be more easily articulated, and some information may come your way which explains current patterns, especially those in groups you may be involved with.

Later on, on Friday afternoon (in the U.K.), Neptune squares Mercury, which could bring more confusion and more to process mentally and spiritually, especially if karma is shared.  You may be sifting truth from illusion on your own, with a friend, or a group.  The day may be characterized with that feeling of having truth in your grasp, then losing hold of it, then regaining it.

Saturday (19th) is much more harmonious: first, Venus makes a trine to the North Node.  You may make connections, and see the unity behind seeming karmic interactions.  Good relations may be restored, if they were even ever unstable.  But karmic understanding prevails.

In the late evening, Venus sextiles Neptune, which is a sublime sprinkling of inspiration, and spiritual love, to bless your social interactions.  It favours honest financial dealings, artistic efforts, and dance productions.  Above all, sensitivity in human interaction is enabled.

The week in bullet points:

  • Tomorrow – full emotion
  • Tuesday – effective words
  • Thursday – karmic complexity
  • Friday – confusion
  • Saturday – harmony and sensitivity

Aspects for the week beginning 6 November 2016

A Compatibility Guide for Scorpios

Are you a Scorpio, or do you have a friend, relative or partner born under that sign? Scorpios can make valuable friends, and not all of them sting!

Scorpio Sun with Aries Sun

These two can be quite a go-ahead partnership, with plenty of drive to get things done.  They are both very passionate, too.  Occasionally, this can make for a quarrelsome duo, however, which may not work.  Others may find them quite forceful and full on, if they can’t match their energies.

Famous Example: Debbie McGee and Paul Daniels

Scorpio Sun with Taurus Sun

You often find these two together, opposites as they are, and complementary.  The Taurean is more laid back, but has the stamina for Scorpio emotions and schemes.  There may be a tension between them, but this can also be a strong bond.

Famous Example: Caroline Flack and Olly Murs, a great friendship, with its ups and downs!

Scorpio Sun with Gemini Sun

These two signs do not easily combine.  Gemini likes to keep life on a lighthearted level, and Scorpio likes to get straightaway down to the nitty gritty.  Unless they have harmonious links between their planets, it would not be so easy to find common ground.  They are both energetic signs in different ways, but would need self-awareness and control of their energies to interact successfully.

Famous Example: Jonathan Ross and Jane Goldman

Scorpio Sun with Cancerian Sun ****

This pairing works very well, the emotions of the two flowing in sync like the currents of an underground river.  There may be times they do not need to speak, as they can feel each other’s emotions and heartbeats.  They can look after each other well, and can be soulmates.

Famous Example: Louise Redknapp and Jamie Redknapp (married 18 years)

Scorpio Sun with Leo Sun

This could be a difficult combination.  Though Leo is an acknowledge leader outwardly, Scorpio has a desire to dominate emotionally and psychologically, and won’t let Leo get away with superficialities.  So there can be a running battle, which may be open or unspoken.  They are both strong willed and stubborn (Fixed signs) so would find it difficult to apologize, with Leo pride being at stake, and Scorpio conviction of always being right.  Where their partnership may be strong, would be where they have a common cause or battle to fight.  Power is also a strong theme for both of them, so you might see them in politics together, e.g. Bill Clinton (Leo) and Hillary Clinton (Scorpio), and they may have to take it in turns to hold the reins.

Famous Example: John Keats and Fanny Brawne (star-crossed lovers)

Scorpio Sun with Virgo Sun

This is a harmonious pairing, and can achieve great depth of work or psychological understanding between them, if both are constructive.  The Virgo practicality can be a helpful backdrop for the Scorpio’s psychological searching.  The Scorpio can encourage the Virgo to look deeper than the surface detail, and allow feelings which may have been repressed.

Famous Example: Jeanette Winterson and Susie Orbach, in which Susie is the Scorpio psychotherapist, but writer Jeanette has her Sun exactly conjunct Pluto, giving her Scorpio qualities of her own

Scorpio Sun with Libra Sun

This partnership may not be so easy, as the preferred Libran boat of harmony, tranquillity and attempted balance may be frequently rocked by the more intense and deep and meaningful existence of the Scorpio.  However, this duo may be a chosen path in itself, in order to bring some peace to the Scorpio and some extra challenge to the Libran.  That in itself may bring meaning to their union.

Famous Example: Anthony McPartlin and Declan Donnelly (Comedy duo “Ant and Dec”)

Scorpio Sun with Scorpio Sun

People of the same sign usually get along well, and share great understanding.  Two Scorpios, however, may be quite difficult if one of them is very demanding.  A self-possessed Scorpio can be an asset in partnership, but one who has not yet harnessed their emotional energy can contribute drama or other problems. If both are self-possessed and emotionally intelligent, there is no limit to what they can achieve together, with all that drive and determination.  An extremely intense pairing.

Scorpio Sun with Sagittarius Sun

These two can work well together, not least because being neighbouring signs they may have planets in each other’s signs.  They are both adventurous and daring, in whatever realms they want to explore, so there will be never a dull moment in this relationship.

Scorpio Sun with Capricorn Sun

This is a good partnership, as both have a quiet emotional reserve, but at the same time an understanding of the serious side of life.  Between them, they can tackle the big issues, and socially help the community.  At least one of them will need a sense of humour, though.

Famous Example: Ludovic Kennedy and Moira Shearer

Scorpio Sun with Aquarius Sun

Traditionally, as this is a squared relationship, there can be a great deal of tension.  For example, they may both claim that they are always right!  That can create moments or days of stand offs, unless one or both have a more easy going Ascendant or Moon.  On a higher level, however, squared Suns can overcome all odds.

Famous Example: Julia Roberts and Danny Moder

Scorpio Sun with Pisces Sun****

This is a lovely partnership, unless one or other partner is very complex and proves too much hard work.  There is great emotional empathy, and compassion for others: a great well of it in the case of Scorpio, and an ocean of it in the case of Pisces.  They could take others under their wing, in charitable causes.

Famous Example: Goldie Hawn and Kurt Russell (together 33 years)

 

A full compatibility analysis details every component of the two birthcharts in relation to each other, not just the Sun sign.  As there is a lot of work involved, it is my most expensive service, at £45.

 

Aspects

Not a square in sight this week, but on the menu are two trines and a sextile, plus three sign changes for the planets.  That bodes well for a smooth week, with minor changes.

Today we are fortunate to have a trine between Mercury and Chiron, which is helpful for sensing body-mind connections, and co-operation between conventional and alternative medicine.  It is a good start to the week for establishing a daily yoga or meditation routine.

Tomorrow morning (Monday 7th) Pluto sextiles the Sun in Scorpio, and that is a serious but constructive start to the working week, and good for tackling in-depth issues and finding creative and meaningful ways of proceeding.  In the Office, it is a good day for discovering ways to put people first, and for Human Resources to prove their worth.

Mars enters Aquarius on Wednesday (9th) in the middle of the working week.  While Mars has been in Capricorn your energies may have been focussed on career plans and ambitions, and now there is a wider and more altruistic focus on society’s needs. There is a sense of team-work and a humanitarian supportiveness of the underdog in the use of the energies. You may find a new and helpful focus for your energy, where you can accentuate the positive and a better future. This is the day of the result of the U.S. Presidential election, and it certainly brings a change of mood and direction.

On Saturday (12th), two more planets change sign.  First, Venus enters Capricorn from Sagittarius.  You may have been spreading your wings socially of late, and now need to be more disciplined in that respect.  This placing is good for bringing what is in your heart into the work you do in the world, or social climbing if that is your desire.  Who you know may acquire more importance during this period (until 7th December), but it is more important to recognize why you feel as you do, and whether this is where you need to go.  More planning and deliberation is required before the social whirl begins again when Venus enters Aquarius.  The true task of Venus in Capricorn is to examine your feelings and loyalties, and know their worth.  It could be time to declutter your Christmas card list and address book, too.

Just after lunchtime, Mercury enters Sagittarius.  So if you had missed having a planet in Sagittarius since the early hours of the day, you can enjoy another burst of Sagittarian energy, in this case mental energy.  Mercury in Scorpio will have brought intense mental focus, and can now widen its field and become interested in new pastures and philosophies.  You may take up a new study for instance, or a new enthusiasm, such as learning a new language.  A friend of mine has just taken up a night class in Chinese.  Such things can bring a new lease of life, and a change can be as good as a rest in mental terms.  You may be thinking about travel plans, and these could solidify during Mercury’s stay in Sagittarius (until 2nd December) – you may find yourself booking up a winter holiday.  The group mind may be more positive and optimistic.

Chiron also trines the Sun on Saturday, and so, as we began the week with healing, we also conclude the week with healing.  Whereas on Sunday the emphasis was on the mind, and its role in healing, at the end of the week the focus is on creativity, e.g. healing through creativity.  The emphasis is also on looking at wholeness and inclusiveness, as a way to achieve healing.  There may be a connection between healing initiatives undertaken last weekend which bear fruit this following weekend, arising out of leisure interests and projects.

The week in bullet points:

  • Today – mental healing
  • Tomorrow – constructive avenues
  • Wednesday – teamwork
  • Saturday – minor changes, and healing through wholeness

Aspects for the week beginning 30 October 2016

Hillary Clinton

“In Hillary, we have a candidate who has dedicated her life to public service, someone who has waited her turn and helped out while waiting.” ~ Michelle Obama

America stands on the edge of a new Presidency, and the world is holding its breath.  I wrote a blog about Trump last December, so it is only fitting that at this time I write about Hillary!  The F.B.I. chose this crucial week in the Presidential contest to re-open the investigation into her emails, and there is an underlying tension between her chart and the F.B.I’s in that their Suns are exactly squared.  But transiting Jupiter is opposite the F.B.I’s Saturn, implying they have thrown caution to the wind, and Pluto opposes their Neptune, so it is a fight they may not win.

Background

Hillary Clinton was born in Chicago on 26th October 1947.  Her father was a conservative character and a Republican, while her mother was more affectionate and very encouraging to her ambitions.  She grew up with brothers, and was very much a tomboy.  “Back in 1959″ she says in her 2003 autobiography Living History, “I wanted to become a teacher or a nuclear physicist”. Well Nuclear physicist – now that is a very Scorpionic profession!  She was brought up as a Methodist, and took to heart the Methodist work ethic and its commitment to public service.

Birth Chart

There is great controversy over her birth time, which is commonly thought to be either 8 am or 8 pm.  I tend to favour 8.02 pm, mainly because her round face and sidelong glance are so Cancerian, and 8.02 pm provides a 0 degree Cancerian Ascendant.  Also, that she has been a lifelong proponent of women’s rights, a province of that sign.  Gloria Steinem has positive reminiscences about Hillary in her new autobiography “My Life on the Road”. A Cancerian Ascendant would be fitting for a first female President of the U.S.

There are some strong features in her chart, starting with her Sun sign of Scorpio.  That makes her very determined, and combined with Moon in Pisces is responsible for a reputation of secrecy.

She is a Warrior: her ruling planet Pluto is exactly conjunct Mars, a powerhouse of energy. She has a never say die attitude to life. This conjunction can also put her in danger, and there is no doubt she does have many enemies.  As to whether she herself is a villain, as many would say, that depends on her level of evolution and what she does with her power.  Who can say?  Only she knows her true intent, and I tend to see her as well-intentioned.  She has controversies in her past, but power does bring challenges and dilemmas, or  “Hard Choices” as she named her 2014 book about her time as Secretary of State.  The evening chart puts Mars conjunct Pluto in the 2nd House of Finance, and her finances have certainly been controversial. The morning chart puts this conjunction in the 9th House of Foreign Affairs – this could be valid, given her reputation as a warmonger.  The level of responsibility she has undertaken in her life has been held with restraint and good sense for the most part: imagine it in the hands of the hotheaded Donald Trump in all his emotional immaturity.

She has a poignant Venus-Chiron conjunction in Scorpio, very symbolic of the emotional betrayal by her husband Bill Clinton.  Though he was a capable President, and ably supported by her, there is no denying the severity of this wound, which to my mind she bore with dignity. This conjunction occurs in the 5th House for the evening chart, which can rule love affairs, and in the 12th House for morning chart, which would make the experience more internal and more secretive.

The Moon is at the end of Pisces in the evening chart, at the end of the 9th House of Foreign Lands, and she has travelled the world regularly in her life and for her work.  The Moon would be on the 5th House cusp in morning chart, and being trine her Ascendant would give her some Cancerian physical characteristics, but maybe not as marked as the evening chart; also the morning time would indicate one daughter, which is the case.

Career

Her time as First Lady (January 1993 to January 2001) gave her invaluable experience and training for a possible future role as female President.  Granted, controversy always followed her: over Health Care, over the Whitewater investigation, over her response to Bill’s infidelities and the Monica Lewinsky affair.  But she seemed undaunted through it all, and went on to pen her very well-written memoirs in 2003.  In contrast, Bill Clinton’s autobiography, which was a thick tome and seemed very hastily put together, I found unreadable, and I subsequently gave it away to a politics student.

Secretary of State

Having unsuccessfully contested the Democratic nomination for the 2008 election, she became Secretary of State, a post she held between 2009 and 2013. This was a responsible, challenging and demanding role, which she took on with characteristic diligence and wholeheartedness.  Again, she came under criticism, notably over her handling of the Benghazi affair (the death of the U.S. Ambassador to Libya, J. Christopher Stevens).  She wrote about what she learned in Hard Choices “All of us face hard choices in our lives.  Life is about making such choices.  Our choices and how we handle them shape the people we become.”  This book details the challenges of this high-pressure post, and her dealings all over the world, including Europe and Benghazi.

Bill Clinton

“I supported his agenda and worked hard to translate his vision into actions that improved people’s lives, strengthened our sense of community and furthered our democratic values at home and around the world” ~ Hillary Clinton, in Living History

No one has shaped her destiny more than her husband Bill, as she tells it in Living History, which includes a fascinating account of how they met at Yale, and the shared interest in politics which brought them together.  As First Lady, she was very much hands on, and again took on board the lessons that phase of her life brought.

Her relationship with Bill must at times have seemed a mixed blessing, but the astrological picture of their Synastry reveals more harmony than dissonance.  Her Uranus is exactly sextile his Sun, which provides a great spark.  Her Neptune is on his Venus in his 1st House, which is intriguing, as you would think it would be the other way round the way he repeatedly deceived her in their relationship.  Her Sun squares his Saturn, which is more difficult for her.  But her Saturn sextiles his Uranus, which enabled her to bring realism where his schemes might have been too adventurous, and her Neptune was sextile his Pluto which brings a deep mutual understanding (though Neptune sextile Pluto was a very long running theme astrologically, and did not have such a personal application).

US Chart

She has a very positive relationship with the country she loves.  Her Chiron trines its Sun, so she feels protective towards it.  Her North Node sextiles its Mercury, so her destiny is in tune with its mindset.  Her Sun trines its Venus, which is an affectionate combination.  Her Saturn sextiles its Mars, she is suited to an administrative role with it.  Her Midheaven trines its Jupiter, so her Career is elevated by it.  Her Pluto (ruling planet) is sextile its Saturn – she brings to bear the force of her personality in connection with it.  All these are exact aspects, but maybe the clue to her disaffection from some of its people is her Nodal Axis square its Moon.

Transits

What do her transits say about this period of time?  On Election day, Mercury is on her South Node, which is very karmic.  Saturn will be trine her Mars, which is decisive.  Saturn will also trine her Pluto, a serious but constructive note.  And Uranus will be trine her Saturn, which is galvanizing.  Donald Trump’s own transits I feel are fairly favourable, and so I think the result could be too close for comfort.  On Inauguration Day, Mars sextiles her North Node, which again is karmic and again galvanizing.  Pluto sextiles her Venus, an important change in her personal life (Pluto was opposite Barack Obama’s Venus when he took office in 2009, quite a personal adjustment).

How does the picture look for Bill Clinton?  I think he will be a supportive presence, with the invaluable experience he can provide, though he has seemed increasingly frail of late.  I think from the transits though that this period will give his spirit a boost, and may revive his energies for a time.  His transits are very upbeat: on Election day Jupiter sextile his Pluto exactly, and Uranus sextiles exactly his Uranus (a favourable change of circumstances).  At the possible Inauguration he has a Jupiter Return, which is very upbeat indeed, and Saturn sextiles his Jupiter, so the chance to turn some dreams into reality.

Running Mate Tim Kaine

Hillary’s running mate Tim Kaine has a very optimistic and favourable birth chart, and good interaspects with Hillary, auspicious for them working together.  However in his transits he has a heavy duty transit of Pluto on his Mars in Capricorn, which may be due to a weight of responsibility.  At the possible Inauguration the North Node sextiles his natal Neptune, a karmic opportunity to put his ideals into operation.

What I wrote about Donald

let’s be very clear: strong men – men who are truly role models – don’t need to put down women to make themselves feel powerful.” ~ Michelle Obama

Last December I wrote: “Fortunately, we have a birth time for him, and we see a belligerent Mars conjunct the Ascendant in Leo: power is an aphrodisiac.  His Mars is exactly trine the Galactic Centre, which may also be a power significator.  He has been very inventive lately with his Leo mane. His Sun is in Gemini conjunct the North Node (Leadership karma) and Uranus (controversy is his middle name) in the 10th House of Career, ambition, and prominence in the world.”

I do feel that, while he likes the fight, he would not really like the work involved in the top job.  Donald has Uranus trine his Moon on Election day, but Chiron square his Moon, so contradictory emotions.  He will be mentally in good shape with the North Node sextile his Mercury, and Neptune trine his Mercury.  Inauguration day sees Jupiter trine his Sun, which is very good for him – let us hope that he finds pastures new.  I don’t see him moping, I see him finding a new project.  But Saturn opposes his Sun, and Chiron squares his Sun, that day, so maybe that favours Hillary’s chances.  Pluto squares his Jupiter, bringing overweening power, or a missed opportunity for power.  The transits of his running mate Mike Pence are fairly lacklustre at this time.

What other Astrologers say

The recent ISAR Astrological conference in California brought many Astrologers together, who decided that Hillary would taste victory.  There are some dissenters, but notably a lot of Astrologers agree, among them Alan Oken.  American Astrologer Larry Schwimmer notes that Jupiter is conjunct Hillary’s Neptune in Libra, which if the evening birthtime is true, would put that transit in her 4th House, providing a compelling image of her in the palatial White House.  For myself, the astrological evidence is not conclusive enough for my liking, but I would predict Hillary on the basis that I have always “seen” her in the role.  I think she was born to it.

Aspects

First thing this morning, Venus was conjunct Saturn at 14 degrees Sagittarius.  That will have put a serious complexion on relationships, or finance.  If you are in the U.K., you may have been asleep, and your dreams may have reflected such themes.  Depending on where this conjunction fell in your chart, the focus and application will vary.  Interestingly, the conjunction trines exactly Hillary Clinton’s exact natal Mars/Pluto conjunction, and she has been very cool, calm and collected in her response to the F.BI.’s latest move.

We also have a trine between Mercury and Neptune today, which brings through inspiration from spiritual sources, and enables us to apply it.

Then at 17.38 Hrs (U.K. time) we have a New Moon in Scorpio, providing the opportunity to begin anew in profound ways.  We may feel differently about life, and experience the cycle of birth, death and rebirth at a deeper level.  This New Moon occurs at 7 degrees Scorpio, so again will yield more meaning according to its placement within your chart.

On Tuesday, November 1st, some of the inspiration from today will be reinforced as the Sun trines Neptune.  Information received today may be incorporated into some shining creativity.

Thursday (3rd) continues the good news, with Mercury sextile Pluto.  Mercury-Pluto isn’t so much good news as important, serious, constructive news, but that’s good.  They say that no news is good news, but if you are going to have news, and it is going to make a difference, then let it be Mercury allied to Pluto.

Friday (4th) brings a square between Venus and Chiron, which could be challenging on an emotional level, and may bring health crises.  But the way that Chiron works is to throw up the problem, and then reveal the solution.  It may just need a little work on your part to really see what is there, and what is needed.

Finally, a healing transit to Venus completes the week on Saturday (5th).  Uranus trines Venus: a sparkling contact bringing all manner of social benefits.  Meetings could bring excitement, romance could blossom, and there may be minor financial showerings.  It’s a chance for the Universe to surprise us, in delightful ways.

The week in bullet points:

  • Today – starting dull, mental inspiration in the middle, a new start later
  • Tuesday – creative inspiration
  • Thursday – important news and discussion
  • Friday – discomfort and hopefully resolution
  • Saturday – sparkling

Aspects for the week beginning 23 October 2016

Strictly Come Dancing – Part 3

Here are the next four contenders in this competition.  I hope to get round them all in due course!

Danny Mac

Ex-Hollyoaks actor Danny Mac has been my favourite since week 1 (and not because he looks like a suave young Pierce Brosnan).  From his week 1 cha cha to his week 4 quickstep (very Fred Astaire) he has seemed at home with all genres of dance.  He is a Piscean, the sign of dance, with his Mercury exactly trine Neptune, the planet of dance.  He is a natural.  He has complex energies: his Mars is caught up in a satellitium of Uranus/Saturn/Mars/Neptune in the first decanate of Capricorn, so he is very determined.  I could easily see him in the final, though his astrological transits are not outstanding for the time.  Jupiter will be opposing his Venus, Uranus will be on his Venus (not a straightforward victory) but Neptune will be sextile his Neptune, so he will be true to the spirit of dance and his own spiritual aspirations.  He is partnered with newcomer Oti Mabuse, who so far has done a brilliant job of bringing out excellence.  She is very grounded (5 Earth planets) and instinctual (0 Air planets).  She’s a Sun in Leo performer, with a very driven Sun/Mars/Pluto T-square.  She has Mercury exactly trine Neptune (dance inspiration) which forms a Grand Trine with Mars.  In their compatibility, her Venus trines his North Node, which is a good karmic link.  At the final, she will have Pluto trine her Mars, in fighting spirit mode.  I think they will make the final, but may just be pipped to the post by Ore or Louise.

Ore Odube

Judge Craig Revel Horwood has said TV Presenter Ore is the one to beat. I would add do not underestimate a Scorpio – they go for it hell for leather!  He has Venus/Pluto, Mercury and Sun in Scorpio, and with 5 Fixed planets is very determined.  Mercury trine Jupiter in his chart gives him a wide capacity for learning, and Venus sextile Neptune combines a flair for dance harmoniously with musicality.  He also has an electrical energy (Mars sextile Uranus) and great personal power (Jupiter trine Pluto).  In addition, he has the North Node exactly sextile Chiron, so he also has healing qualities.  So he has a lot going for him in life, in whatever he undertakes.  The week before last he gained three 10s from the judges!  Currently, Pluto (his ruling planet) is exactly sextile his Mercury, enabling him to focus in the most profound way.  At the end of the competition the North Node sextiles his Venus (a karmic uplift).  And although he will have a few squares in his transits, Uranus will be exactly trine his Uranus, so he could pull off the final surprise!  He is partnered with  Joanne Clifton who has been taking part in Strictly Come Dancing since 2014.  Joanne has a quadruple conjunction of Pluto/Mercury/Sun/Saturn across the cusp of Libra and Scorpio, which is very intense, with a great deal of mental focus when it comes to musicality.  Like Ore, she has Sun in Scorpio.  There is a strong sensuality about her chart, with Venus exactly conjunct Mars closely square her Nodal Axis.  Relationships are a strong karmic focus of this lifetime.  She has a very go-ahead streak too, with Jupiter conjunct Uranus in Sagittarius.  Bruno said yesterday that their chemistry and connection were outstanding, and in their astrological compatibility they are both born under the steamy sign of Scorpio!  There are also good mental and physical connections (his Mercury sextile her Venus/Mars), though her Saturn is conjunct his Venus which keeps control in the relationship.  Her transits are fairly quiet at the moment, but at the final Pluto trines her Mars (a supreme effort), and the North Node sextiles her Saturn (karmic honour). She also has surprise in her toolkit at the end, with the Nodal Axis squaring her Uranus.

Daisy Lowe

Statuesque model Daisy Lowe is born under the long-limbed sign of Aquarius, and is so far holding her own in the contest.  Although she is an Air sign, she has 6 planets in Earth signs, so is quite grounded.  With the Sun trine the Moon in her chart, she knows her own mind.  She has great energy (Sun and Mercury square Mars), and like Ore has Mercury trine Jupiter (a wide capacity for learning).  She is capable of controlled action (Mars trine Saturn), and also has electrical energy (Mars trine Uranus) and subtlety in dance (Mars trine Neptune).  She has Pluto trine her natal Pluto at the moment, so the force is with her.  At the close of the competition Uranus squares her Venus, so she may make a sudden exit before the final.  Daisy is paired with Aljaz Skorjanec.  I have written in the past: “Aljaz Skorjanec is an out and out Capricorn with several planets in that sign, but normally fairly lucky with Sun exactly trine Jupiter.”  Their synastry (interaspects between their charts) is particularly intense, with her Pluto sextile his Mars, her Chiron on his Jupiter, her Venus on his Saturn and her Saturn on his Uranus.  At the moment Aljaz has Pluto on his Mars, so he may be sailing close to the wind in some area of his life.  Jupiter is also square his Uranus, and Uranus square his Saturn, so in some way he may be taking risks (perhaps nothing to do with the dance competition).  At the end of the competition Chiron sextiles his Saturn, so he may be engaged with healing an aspect of his life, but Uranus will still be square his Saturn.  Therefore, it looks likely that they will be knocked out before the end of the competition.

Greg Rutherford

Greg Rutherford is another out and out Scorpio (witness the red hair), with Venus/Pluto, Mercury and the Sun in Scorpio.  Well, unbelievably, he is an astrological twin of Ore Odube, born exactly the same day of the same year. It’s fascinating that fate has placed them in the same batch of contestants at this time.   Greg is a sportsman, and Ore is a sports commentator.  Most of what I have said about Ore will apply to Greg, so I don’t need to re-hash the information.

On second thoughts, I will re-hash:

Mercury trine Jupiter in his chart gives him a wide capacity for learning, and Venus sextile Neptune combines a flair for dance harmoniously with musicality.  He also has an electrical energy (Mars sextile Uranus) and great personal power (Jupiter trine Pluto).  In addition, he has the North Node exactly sextile Chiron, so he also has healing qualities.

What is different, as well as the birthtime and Ascendant which are unknown, is the partnership and synastry, which will present a slightly different picture.  There is no doubt that in the last two weeks Ore has pulled right ahead in the competition, and Greg may possibly leave the competition soon, if not tonight.  He and Ore have just come through their first Saturn Return, a point of maturity. Greg is partnered with Natalie Lowe, of whom I wrote last year: “Natalie Lowe… has Sun, North Node and Mercury in Leo which makes her a natural performer.  She has Moon, Mars and Pluto in Libra, which makes her very intense in relationship.”

Their chemistry is harmonious, with trined Venuses, his Pluto trine her Venus, his Uranus sextile her Mars, and his Chiron trine her Pluto.  There is a karmic tie, in his South Node conjunct her Pluto, which is an intense learning.  He will have learned a lot from the last few weeks, at a deep level, about himself.  Currently, he has the same transits as Ore, to rehash:

“Pluto (his ruling planet) is exactly sextile his Mercury, enabling him to focus in the most profound way.  At the end of the competition the North Node sextiles his Venus (a karmic uplift).”  He will also have Uranus trine natal Uranus, but at the moment it does not look like he will be up there with the front runners.

So what difference will the transits to Natalie’s chart make?  She currently looks strong, with Pluto trine her Jupiter, and Chiron trine her Uranus.  She certainly danced well yesterday!  At the close of the competition she will have Chiron trine her Uranus (helpful), Saturn on her Neptune (a dampener), and Jupiter on her Pluto (powerful), as well as Uranus trine her Neptune and Saturn sextile Pluto.  She will be mega-busy, but not likely to be engaged in the final of the competition, other than in the group dances.

More Soon…

Aspects

At 13.33 Hrs today there is a minor aspect (a quincunx) between two major planets (Jupiter and Neptune).  Some uncomfortable truth may be presented to you to try to incorporate into your philosophy of life, which requires a slight expansion of consciousness to accommodate.

Tomorrow (Monday 24th) in the evening Mercury enters Scorpio, leaving the measured debate of Libra to plunge into a more intense mental focus, researching mysteries and enabling you to see into the heart of things.

Wednesday (26th) puts the limelight on Venus (so the attention will be very much on Taureans and Librans).  First, in the very early hours (possibly affecting the previous evening, and certainly that will apply in the U.S.) Venus squares Neptune, bringing to light illusions around relationships.  What is concealed will be revealed this week, generally.  There is then the choice of how to deal with this revelation, whether to forgive and forget, or to change the thoughts and beliefs around the matter, or to transcend the current level of the relationship.  Any other possibilities on a postcard, please.

In the afternoon, with Venus sextile Jupiter, there may be an opportunity to right things, perhaps along the lines suggested.  Magnanimity, generosity of spirit, and pure love may heal the situation.  Venus sextile Jupiter is one of the best aspects all the year round, so good will and expansion of the heart are likely to be in evidence.

Thursday (27th) in the afternoon brings an opportunity to focus the mind, with the Sun conjunct Mercury at 4 degrees Scorpio.  Mysteries and investigations are capable of further elucidation (that does seem to be the theme for the week).  Two further aspects fine-tune the information and experience to be had that day.

First, Venus squares the Nodal Axis, and that again puts relationships in the spotlight, but in a karmic sense.  You may acquire specific information about a past relationship, which aids your karmic understanding.  This may involved a group situation, or even a love triangle.

Then Mars sextiles Chiron, and there is an opportunity for healing with energy, whatever that should mean to you.  For some it may mean going down the gym, for others it may be one of the new age alternative practices in energy medicine.

Saturday (29th) may be tricky, in that energy may come adrift again with a square between Mars and Uranus.   Some people could prove cantankerous, others very edgy and unpredictable.  If you can keep the energy harmony of Thursday, then you are contributing to the general pool of harmony, which may help to bring the loose cannons under control.  Ultimately, of course, we can only be responsible for our own energy, but if the hundredth monkey syndrome is as real as they say, our contribution makes a difference.

The week in bullet points:

  • Today – religious and spiritual recalibration
  • Tomorrow – intense mental focus
  • Wednesday – illusions tackled and good will to all women and men
  • Thursday – also intense mental focus, plus relationship karma, and healing energy
  • Saturday – electrical disturbance

 

Aspects for the week beginning 16 October 2016

Bob Dylan

“Flashing for the warriors whose strength is not to fight
Flashing for the refugees on the unarmed road of flight
An’ for each an’ ev’ry underdog soldier in the night
An’ we gazed upon the chimes of freedom flashing”

~ Bob Dylan

What took them so long to award Bob Dylan the Nobel prize for literature?  It happened finally, this week on Thursday 13th October.  The expanse of his work is so large, that I will have to look at it with a personal eye in order to confine it into the nutshell of a Sunday morning blog.  His songs are poetic, and in turn political, philosophical and romantic.

In the dime stores and bus stations
People talk of situations
Read books, repeat quotations
Draw conclusions on the wall

Both myself and hubby Mike were teenagers in the 1960s when Dylan began as a recording artist, and we both went through the same process: we liked his songs, then loved some of the cover versions by Joan Baez, Judy Collins and The Byrds which unlocked the beautiful melodies, then came back to appreciate his own raw voice.

Birth Chart

For many years I avoided working with Bob Dylan’s chart, as I once knew an Astrologer who vehemently used to query his date of birth.  He is generally accepted now as being born on 24th May 1941 at 9.05 pm in Duluth, Minnesota.

The majority of his planets are clustered around Taurus (song) and Gemini (writing) and so his work is revealed, a natural expression of the art of songwriting.  And five (half) his planets are in his 6th House of work, describing the prolific nature of his output.

He has Mars in 3rd House (Protesting communication) square his Sun, expressing his anger and activism.

North Node conjunct Neptune (spiritual leadership) in Virgo in 10th House of Reputation is an interesting feature of his chart.  In the late 1970s he was heard to say, after his conversion to Christianity:

“Years ago they … said I was a prophet. I used to say, “No I’m not a prophet” they say “Yes you are, you’re a prophet.” I said, “No it’s not me.” They used to say “You sure are a prophet.” They used to convince me I was a prophet. Now I come out and say Jesus Christ is the answer. They say, “Bob Dylan’s no prophet.” They just can’t handle it.

There’s no doubt he has always had a huge following, but he handles the potential illusion of the Neptune/North Node with realism and self-effacement.  He has 0 planets in Cardinal signs, his Mars is in Pisces, and he has no desire to lead anyone.  He is a commentator, a communicator (Sun in Gemini, Mercury in Gemini in the 7th House of Relationship close to the cusp).

He has Venus in Gemini, a mark of the Troubadour:

Hey, Mr. Tambourine Man, play a song for me
I’m not sleepy and there ain’t no place I’m going to
Hey, Mr. Tambourine Man, play a song for me
In the jingle jangle morning I’ll come following you

(although, apparently, he meant something completely different).

His Midheaven (Careerpoint) is in the musical sign of Libra.  There is also a romantic theme in many of his songs:

My love, she speaks like silence
Without ideals or violence
She doesn’t have to say she’s faithful
Yet she’s true like ice, like fire

and the lovely

There’s beauty in the silver, singin’ river
There’s beauty in the sunrise in the sky
But none of these and nothing else can touch the beauty
That I remember in my true love’s eyes

Chronicles

Blowin’ in the Wind” was the first sound of his voice that registered.  This was on his 2nd album “The Freewheelin’ Bob Dylan (1963).

Someone interviewed this week observed that while the Beatles were writing “I Wanna Hold Your Hand”, Bob Dylan was writing “A Hard Rain’s Gonna Fall” (on the Freewheelin’ album):

“Oh, where have you been, my blue-eyed son?
And where have you been my darling young one?
I’ve stumbled on the side of twelve misty mountains…
And it’s a hard, it’s a hard, it’s a hard, and it’s a hard
It’s a hard rain’s a-gonna fall.”

“The Times they are A Changin’ ” (1964) also alerted us to his wider vision.  But I remember so vividly when his unique combination of phraseology and distinctive emotion hit me, as I walked into a coffee bar as a teenager after school one day in 1965.  But I will forever debate what the song was.  It was either “It ain’t me Babe”, “Just like a Woman” or “She belongs to Me”.  I have the date (10th May) and the name of the coffee bar (Sally’s, in St. Albans) in my diary, but the song remains elusive.

In our 6th Form Common Room, there was always a Bob Dylan album blaring, mainly I think “Highway 61 Revisited”.  I was part of the “heater set”, permanently draped round the radiator, while others were out serving as Prefects.

Hubby particularly likes the covers of his songs by The Byrds, and different generations will have their favourite covers:  Adele first came to my notice, when she sang “To make you feel my love” on her first album 19.

Joan Baez

It is probably Joan Baez, more than anybody, who has brought his songs to life, and revealed the melody and emotion underneath the lyrics to such an intuitive degree.  They were equally passionate about the causes they took up, and looking at their charts, they are a true brother and sister (her Moon conjuncts his Sun exactly).  They lend power to each other, with her Mars exactly trine his Pluto, and they have karmic ties (her Neptune exactly conjunct his North Node, her Descendant exactly conjunct his North Node).

She says: “The Nobel Prize for Literature is yet another step towards immortality for Bob Dylan. The rebellious, reclusive, unpredictable artist/composer is exactly where the Nobel Prize for Literature needs to be. His gift with words is unsurpassable. Out of my repertoire spanning 60 years, no songs have been more moving and worthy in their depth, darkness, fury, mystery, beauty, and humour than Bob’s. None has been more of a pleasure to sing. None will come again.”

Award

His award comes as Jupiter establishes itself in his 10th House of Career and Reputation.  But also, Uranus sextiles his natal Mercury (Ruling Planet) in Gemini in his 7th House.

Some of the lines in “The Times they are A-Changin’” read like today’s papers on politics and climate change, and are as relevant today as when he wrote them in the 1960s.

 

Aspects

This week’s aspects are challenging, so I will try and show any possible upside if I can.  If you are reading this today (Sunday 16th) you may already have dealt with two of them, so that is a plus.

It could be that while you slept (in the U.K.), you processed the Pluto square to Mercury and the Full Moon in Aries conjunct Uranus, so all well and good.  Others of us were having the customary night of insomnia which often accompanies a Full Moon.  Pluto square to Mercury will have meant you had much on your mind, and the Full Moon will have brought a full flood of emotion.

Tuesday (18th) to be fair does not constitute a challenge, so could represent a bright spot in the week.  For Venus enters Sagittarius that day, after a period of intensity in Scorpio.  Feelings become more expansive, and sociability comes more easily.  Philanthropy and benefaction may come through, e.g. we may see the declaration of more generosity from the wealthier at the top trickling down.  They need not all rush at once, because they have until 12th November when Venus moves into Capricorn to make their donation.

On Wednesday (19th) Mars conjuncts Pluto at 15 degrees Capricorn, and that of course means conflict. There may be skirmishes between Russia and the U.S. over Syria for instance.  In your own life, try to keep any loose cannons in your life under restraint, harmlessly redeployed, or distracted.  On the world stage, Donald Trump or Boris Johnson may say something offensive towards another nation.  Hopefully the peacemakers, the diplomats,  the negotiators, mediators, healers and lightworkers can step up their efforts.  They may be inspired to raise their game.

On Thursday (20th) Uranus opposes Mercury, which can bring a war of words, perhaps slightly less physical than the fisticuffs of Wednesday.  It may still be very tense, and make uncomfortable listening, privately or on the world stage.  You yourself may feel like a spot of unvarnished truth telling.  If so, I recommend listening to the whole speech on You Tube of Michelle Obama, talking about Donald Trump’s treatment of women.  It is the definitive speech on the treatment of women, a positive manifesto.  And her delivery is superb and polished.  If you need to make a speech that day, you could do no better than to study it.

Finally, on Saturday (22nd), and very late in the day, the Sun moves into the sign of Scorpio, from Libra.  Again, a change of sign is no bad thing.  But last ditch attempts at diplomacy are best attempted during the day itself, for when the Sun is in Scorpio the bargaining does get tougher.  You start to realize the consequences of your actions more clearly, and more intransigent lines are drawn in the transaction.  On the plus side, there is more sincerity and often more integrity on the table, whatever your enterprise.

To finish, a line of hope from Bob:

“I see my light come shining
From the west unto the east
Any day now, any day now
I shall be released.”

The week in bullet points:

  • Today – simmering down from high emotion and intense ideas
  • Tuesday – feelings expand
  • Wednesday – conflict
  • Thursday – controversy
  • Saturday – a state of flux

Aspects for the week beginning 9 October 2016

A Compatibility Guide for Librans

Are you a Libran, or do you have a friend, relative or partner born under that sign? Librans can generally harmonize well with other signs, and are the romantics of the zodiac.

Libra Sun with Aries Sun

These two signs pull in opposite directions, but can balance each other.  Libra can bring peace to Aries, and Aries can bring energy and movement to the equation.  The colour for Aries is red, and the colour for Libra is blue, so the combination in purple or violet can bring the two together in unity.

Famous Example: Ola Jordan and James Jordan, dance partners and married 13 years

Libra Sun with Taurus Sun

Both these signs are ruled by Venus, so they both enjoy the Arts, including music, and harmony.  When collaborating on an artistic or musical venture, they each contribute to their strengths: Taurus contributes form, such as in pottery and sculpture, and Libra contributes composition and design.  Therefore they can start an art gallery together, or a singing choir.

Libra Sun with Gemini Sun ****

One of the best combinations, with good communication (both Air signs) but Gemini able to make the Libran think, and Libra driving the conversation along cultural lines of interest.  These two signs are very comfortable with each other.  If they both have Venus in Leo, they’ll enjoy trips to the theatre, or performance arts.

Famous Example: Jeremy Corbyn and Diane Abbott (good working colleagues!)

Libra Sun with Cancerian Sun

This is not such an easy pairing, the two signs being squared.  However, if they are both interested in home-making, they can pull together, with Libra having a say in interior design, furnishing and fabric.  Another possible area of bonding is music: Cancerians are skilled in musical rhythm, such as the drum section of a band, and Libran talents include singing and playing other musical instruments.  There is also a basic gentleness about both signs, which could prove a harmonious backdrop to a life together.

Libra Sun with Leo Sun

This is a lovely partnership, which can be great fun in art, music and general creativity.  They can really inspire each other, and Libran people skills result in a fine handling of Leo’s power issues.  For example, Librans can tactfully smooth things over and harmonize situations, and help appropriate boundaries to be drawn.  These two can share a love of luxury.  There’s a quote from romantic Libran Brian Blessed about his relationship with Leo wife Hildegard Neil (married since 1978):

“Every day I wake up with my wife and we both can’t wait for the day to start.  We hold hands and we’re immensely happy. The love just grows”

Libra Sun with Virgo Sun

Neighbouring signs often share planetary proximities, so a Virgo may have Libran planets giving rise to artistic or musical understanding, and a Libran may have Virgo planets encouraging conscientiousness in working ideals.  The Virgo highly sensitive nervous system will be soothed by the Libran’s harmony, and the Libran will be spurred on to greater achievement in their musical or artistic aspirations.  However, Virgos can sometimes think of Librans as lazy.

Famous Example: Lenny Henry and Dawn French, who were married for 25 years

Libra Sun with Libra Sun

This can be a dream team: fostering peace, love and harmony between them.  If one of them has a very strong counterbalancing sign, say as their Moonsign or Ascendant, then they may get bored, or try to sway the other.  But they are both trying to achieve balance, and can help each other do so.  Meditating together for instance, can produce a centre of tranquillity.

Famous Example: Catherine Zeta-Jones and Michael Douglas have been married for 16 years, and share a birthday on 25th September

Libra Sun with Scorpio Sun

This partnership may not be so easy, as the preferred Libran boat of harmony, tranquillity and attempted balance may be frequently rocked by the more intense and deep and meaningful existence of the Scorpio.  However, this duo may be a chosen path in itself, in order to bring some peace to the Scorpio and some extra challenge to the Libran.  That in itself may bring meaning to their union.

Libra Sun with Sagittarius Sun

This partnership could be a lot of fun, and encourage self-expression in positive ways.  Libra may focus on interests in the Arts, and Sagittarius may be inclined towards globe-trotting, but their communication will be excellent and they can share each other’s interests fairly happily.  One area of interest which they do both share is Law: they might both enjoy watching television programmes or films of this nature, e.g. Judge Rinder!  Sagittarius can enthusiastically endorse Libra’s love of fairness and justice in society, and Libra may enjoy intellectual banter and a sense of freedom with Sagittarius.  Outdoor pursuits too may unite them.

Famous Example: Davina McCall and Matthew Robertson have been married 16 years

Libra Sun with Capricorn Sun

This combination may not be quite so easy, as they are both Cardinal signs (wanting to lead), and this may be difficult for Libra who wants to please, in the face of Capricorn who may want to stamp his or her authority on their plans.  They can be united in working for the same ends, e.g. a large scale project, in which they have their designated areas of expertise. For example, in a small firm where Libra handles the Human Resources, and Capricorn is in charge of general administration.  In family life, they may similarly have to divide their chores.  Capricorn can help shape Libran aspirations, and Librans can help keep Capricorns buoyant.

Libra Sun with Aquarius Sun****

This is one of those ideal matches, both Air signs, understanding each other through mental communication of the lower mind (rational exchange of ideas) and the higher mind (through telepathy).  These two can be truly in tune with each other.  If in a group of friends, a working group or team mates, the Aquarian may take charge of overall organization and Libra may connect with each member of the group through a one-to-one heart connection, thus both contributing their strengths.  This is a good partnership for setting up groups and workshops together.

Libra Sun with Pisces Sun

Though the angle between these two signs is not an easy one, both do well in compatibility generally.  Libran is people-pleasing and likes to promote harmony, and Pisces can easily blend emotionally and empathize with the other.  Both are idealistic, and Pisces is imaginative and dreamy, and will enjoy the vibe that Libra puts out.  These two can create a cocoon of love between them: others may enjoy this ambience, but some may find it too sugary with the absence of edge.  Some who are drawn to their company like a quiet life and will enjoy this, but some unconsciously seek drama, which they won’t find so much with these two.

 

A full compatibility analysis details every component of the two birthcharts in relation to each other, not just the Sun sign.  As there is a lot of work involved, it is my most expensive service, at £45.

Aspects

The aspects begin on Tuesday (11th) this week, which is a good day for them.  First, Mercury conjuncts Jupiter at 6 degrees Libra, which will delight everyone.  The prospects are bright for sales and business, learning and education, communication, positive thinking, and travelling.  The conjunction’s placement in the sign of Libra enhances relationships, art and music, and promotes harmony and peace, too.  Diplomacy and negotiations are likely to have good outcomes.  There is something for everyone in this conjunction.

Next, Venus trines Chiron, which is excellent for the healing of relationship wounds.  The time may have come to identify the wound, find the consciousness that will heal it, and release it.  So, more good news, for more people.

In the late afternoon, Mars sextiles Neptune, which will enable the fine tuning and recalibration of energy.  Those who are particularly sensitive will find the correct physical movement or activity which does not upset their system.  After all the buoyancy of the morning, and the relationship healing of the middle of the day, there is a beautiful opportunity to create the perfect action, spiritual and physical poise.

Hold that pose (whether it is a balletic arabesque, or a yogic tricornasana)!  Maintain it meditatively for two days…  For on Thursday (13th), Mercury squares Mars and things could go a little out of kilter.  There can be mental irritability, minor accidents or incidents, or a disconnect between mind and body, mental and physical energies.  You may witness an argument, or at least a heated debate.

Friday (14th) brings another point of balance, and it will be easier to maintain your poise or pose.  Mercury sextiles Saturn, so there is scope for the practical application of the mind, mental discipline, drafting plans in detail, etc.  It is a good, solid working day.

On Saturday (15th) you could feel initially that you are getting somewhere, with Mars trine the North Node, supporting the masculine side of life, righteous indignation, and active projects which are karmic in nature.

Tension may then be starting to build, for there is an opposition between the Sun and Uranus (you could get caught out by loopholes in your plans, or the spanner in the works) later in the morning.  This opposition will still be operation throughout the weekend, caught up with the Full Moon to come on Sunday, and a square between Mercury and Pluto, so make cautious plans for the weekend, with contingencies of Plans B, C and D.  For example, you may have planned an outing, and one member of the group doesn’t feel up to the activities.  You may need to be flexible enough to change plans mid-stream.  Or you may need to store some emotional energy to deal with the sensitivities of others, especially if they are pushed further than their physical or emotional limits.

The week in bullet points:

  • Tuesday – A mighty fine day
  • Thursday – fractiousness
  • Friday – steady progress
  • Saturday – expect the unexpected

Aspects for the week beginning 2 October 2016

Shimon Peres

“Better to negotiate for peace in pain and frustration for five years than have five minutes of gunfire and bullets.”

Shimon Peres, the last of the founding fathers of Israel, died this week aged 93.  Like many advocates of peace, he started out as a “hawk” but undeniably worked for peace in the Middle East for most of his life.

Middle East Peace Process

There was a time, in the 1970s, 1980s and 1990s, when various Middle Eastern leaders appeared on platforms together visibly working towards peace between the Arabs and Israelis.  In 1977 Anwar Sadat of Egypt visited Israel, met the Israeli Prime Minister Menachem Begin, and spoke at the Knesset.  In 1979 an accord was made between them at Camp David, overseen by U.S. President Jimmy Carter.  In the 1990s, the Oslo Accords brought together the PLO chairman Yasser Arafat, and Israeli ministers Shimon Peres and Yitzhak Rabin, overseen by President Bill Clinton.  In 1994 Peres shared in the Nobel Peace prize for his efforts.  Two men were assassinated as a result of their bravery in taking part in this process, Anwar Sadat and Yitzhak Rabin.  Ironically, both were killed by their own countrymen objecting to their part in peace processes.  The current Israeli Prime Minister, Benjamin Nethanyahu, is an unreserved hawk who has dominated his country’s politics for many years.  He would argue with Shimon Peres that security must come first, then peace.  Shimon Peres argued back that peace must come first, to ensure security.

Birth Chart

Shimon Peres was a Leo, with four planets in that sign, and 5 planets in the Fixed signs, indicating leadership and a stubborn nature (he never gave up).  There are alternative dates of his birth, but Astrologers have settled on 16th August 1923, 5.15 a.m. Wiszince, Poland.  The warriorship and the peacemaking both figure in his chart.  Mars conjuncts his Sun (The Warrior) and his Moon is in Libra (The Peacemaker) sextile his Venus.  His Ascendant in Virgo was hardworking, and there was some shyness in his personality (with his Leo planets in the 12th House).  He was an orator, and polyglot, with Mercury sextile Jupiter, and in addition had a very cultured and poetic side (Venus conjunct Neptune) – some of his songs were performed by Andrea Bocelli.  He has strong chart links with the actress Lauren Bacall, who was his cousin.  He could be controversial in speech, with Mercury opposite Uranus, and was destined to be a catalyst of karmic change, with the North Node conjunct Mercury and the Ascendant.  He may have had some confusion between religion and spirituality, with Jupiter square Neptune.  But Jupiter trine exactly Pluto was very balanced for holding public office and political power – he often had to step in during times of crisis and transition in his country.

Funeral

Shimon Peres suffered a stroke on 11th September.  At the time, the Nodal Axis had returned to its position at birth.  Karmically, it was his time to go.  He may not have achieved his dream of peace, but he had sustained his efforts to the end.

It was gratifying to see leaders from around the world honouring his life at his funeral, such as Barack Obama, Prince Charles and Mahmoud Abbas (the Palestinian president).  His most fitting eulogy would be for Benjamin Nethanyahu, who acknowledged his virtues and efforts, to emulate him, in what Barack Obama called the “unfinished business” of the peace process.

At the funeral, Abbas shook hands with Netanyahu and said, poignantly: “Long time, long time.”

Bill Clinton, a long term friend since the days of the Oslo Accord collaboration said: “He started life as Israel’s brightest student, became its best teacher and ended up its biggest dreamer”.

Aspects

Mercury opposes Chiron today, so there may be some poignant news or developments in relation to health and healing.  You may be required to be a listening ear, and send out healing vibes at least, if you cannot make a practical contribution.  The message today may be an emphasis on the contribution that mental states make to physical well being.

Tuesday (4th) is likely to be a serious day, with Sun sextile Saturn, but it can be constructive, and practical.  It is a day for making plans and laying foundations.

Wednesday evening (5th) brings a couple of aspects within the space of 23 minutes: Venus sextile Pluto at 21.22 Hrs (in the U.K.) and Mars square Jupiter at 21.45 Hrs.  Venus sextile Pluto can be enormously helpful in stabilizing relationships and finances, and injecting meaning into the Arts.  The second aspect Mars square Jupiter may be a little disruptive, with a possible flare up of anger, but may be highly enthusiastic as well.  The two aspects could feed into each other in a complex mix of emotions and passions, which you may or may not need to untangle.  There may be enjoyment for some in the sport of the evening.

Friday (7th) brings more contrast: in the morning, Mercury enters Libra, the sign of Peace.  In the evening, the Sun squares Pluto, the planet of drama and challenge. You may have been working hard to set up the autumn schedules, with much mental application, while Mercury was in Virgo.  Now the mind can relax a little more, bringing in a more enjoyable element to the programme, perhaps finding applications for your autumn schedules which have a lighter note.

Pluto from Capricorn squaring the Sun in Libra may ruffle a few feathers at the start of the weekend.  Perhaps authorities have been stamping on one of your leisure pursuits, or withdrawing funding for your Arts project.  Your favourite weekend activities may be disrupted by a heavy handed attitude from someone, or a reminder of reality.  It may be difficult to reconcile duty and pleasure on Friday evening.

Saturday (8th) doesn’t look any easier, with Saturn squaring the Nodal Axis.  You may need to come together in a group to discuss how you go forward on a practical matter.  For example, you may be involved in a project which needs to implement economic cutbacks.  At the same time, you may be interested to find certain karmic links with those involved, which you had not noticed before.  Perhaps there are Soul Contracts behind meetings that day, and realizing that may bring a greater sense of purpose.

The week in bullet points:

  • Today – mental soothing needed
  • Tuesday – constructive
  • Wednesday – passionate
  • Friday – peace and war
  • Saturday – karmic interactions

Aspects for the week beginning 25 September 2016

Strictly Come Dancing – Part 2

Time now to put the astrological microscope on the next 4 contestants in the new season of Strictly Come Dancing, now that all the contestants have competed for the first time.  The standard was incredibly high, for the first week of the contest.

Louise Redknapp

Louise, former singer with the girl band Eternal, is married to the footballer Jamie Redknapp.  In her chart she has 6 of her 10 planets in the Water element, so may be able to convey all that emotion through dance.  She has been a judge on So You Think You Can Dance so she must have some expertise in this medium.  Her Sun is conjunct exactly Venus – she definitely has musicality, being a singer by trade.  Her Sun is trine Jupiter – she is lucky, and may be saved by the public even in her weaker weeks.  She has Mars trine Jupiter, making her enthusiastic, and that’s another quality which may come across.  Her energy is electrical, with Mars conjunct Uranus. Louise currently has Mars sextile her natal Uranus, so she makes an electrifying start.  Saturn conjuncts her North Node, so she may find the commitment hard, or difficult to balance with her family life.  At the close of the competition Mars is still trine her Uranus, so she may be able to sustain the excitement and freshness throughout.  Jupiter will be square her Saturn, so she will feel she has done her utmost, effortwise.  Saturn will be trine her Chiron, which will feel as though she has conquered some weakness or fear.  Uranus will conjunct her Chiron, so there is a slight danger of injury along the way, but all in all I think her efforts will be sustained.

Louise is partnered with Kevin Clifton, whose wife Karen and sister Joanne are also involved with Strictly.   Previously I have noted his “great natural elegance with several planets in Libra”.  There is also great dexterity, with Mercury sextile Uranus”.   In their compatibility, her Saturn squares his Sun, so he may not find it easy teaching her. On current form, Kevin is buzzing, with Jupiter on his Mercury.  Pluto is sextile exactly his Jupiter, so he is also a powerhouse now!  At the finishing line, Jupiter is on his Sun, so could it be another win for Kevin?  He seems unstoppable!  Saturn will be sextile exactly his Sun, so he will also be controlled.  Could well be in the final.

Tameka Empson

As Kim Fox in Eastenders, Tameka never fails to put a smile on our faces.  In the storylines, she has been teaching dance to the locals of Albert Square, and hilarity is her middle name.  She is a bubbly Aries (was in an appropriate red costume), and has half her planets in the Fire signs!  Her birth chart shows Mercury opposite Uranus, which can be controversial in speech; Venus trine Neptune, which could be captivating on the dance floor; and Saturn square Uranus, which might bring eruptions from time to time.  The Sun and Chiron conjunct the South Node in Leo, may mean she could have been a healer in ancient Egypt!  During her first dance(s), she has Saturn trine her natal Venus, so she is likely to be slow and sure building up her skills.  Jupiter trines her Jupiter, so she’ll have some flamboyant touches up her sleeve, and start strongly in the competition.  Neptune is trine her Uranus as well, so she will be taking in new complexity.  At the close of the competition, Chiron will be conjunct her Mars, so again there is a possibility of injury.  Neptune stays trine her Uranus, so she will feel she has learned a lot!

She has been partnered with Gorka Marquez, a newcomer.  With the Sun exactly trine his Neptune, he is born to dance.  Mercury trine exactly Saturn gives him good concentration – he could be a hard taskmaster.  Mars sextile Jupiter, provides energy allied with enthusiasm, and will ensure he laughs along with Tameka.  Jupiter conjunct closely South Node in Leo indicates he could have known Tameka in ancient Egypt, as a priest.  How will they get on?  His Venus trines Tameka’s  Sun, so there will be a mutual admiration. Her Jupiter is conjunct his Mars, energizing him.  Their Jupiters are sextile, so they can bring each other luck.  Her Pluto squares his Neptune, so she could literally floor him at times! At first dances, Saturn will be square his natal Sun, so he will find it hard work.  The North Node will be conjunct his natal Sun, indicating it is an important time for him karmically, putting him on the map.  Jupiter will be sextile his Jupiter – he will be happy with early outcomes.  The North Node will be trine his natal Neptune, showcasing his dance in his time to shine.  Pluto will also be sextile his Pluto, an empowering time – he will feel masterful.  At the close of the contest, Jupiter squares his Saturn, so he will feel he has done as well as he can, but that does not look like a winning transit.

Judge Rinder

I think I speak for everybody when I say Judge Rinder’s dancing left me gobsmacked.  I have never sat down to watch his courtroom television programme, but judges do sit very stiffly.  So to see him come on the dance floor and throw away all abandon and inhibition was a total surprise!  The dance judges praised him for flamboyance, and good hip action.  In interviews, he has displayed a sharp wit.  He is the grandson of a Holocaust survivor, and gained a double first class honours degree from Manchester University.  Apparently, he gave up acting because he was not as good as Benedict Cumberbatch (who is a friend).  Sadly we do not currently have a birth date for him, but on the strength of his first performance I would say he will get at least to the middle of the contest, if not to Blackpool.

He is partnered with Oksana Platero, another newbie.  We do have her birth date, so hopefully can assess some of his chances through her birthchart.  She is a passionate Scorpio, with Sun sextile closely Neptune, another dancer born to the profession.  Her Sun conjuncts Pluto and  is exactly trine Chiron, so she feels deeply and has healing qualities.  She does have a Grand Cross in her chart, so probably has not had an easy life.  I imagine some deep conversations in the practice room as they get to know each other.  For their first dance, Jupiter was trine her Jupiter, another great start in the contest, with Mars conjunct her Uranus adding sizzle.  North Node is sextile her Pluto, showing this is an important time on her life’s path.  Plus she has a Nodal Reversal from its original position, so this will prove to be a turning point in her life.  By the end of the contest, the North Node sextiles her Sun (important karma), and Mars sextiles her Saturn (she has plenty of fighting spirit).  On that score, I think she and Judge Rinder will get past Blackpool, but not quite make the final.  If I obtain his birth time in the mean time I will keep you posted.

Anastacia

Anastacia is a survivor, having come through many illnesses, but says she feels very nervous about this contest.  She made a good start last night, however.  She has the challenge of Sun conjunct Pluto in Virgo, but also some of the luck of Jupiter conjunct her Sun, in a triple conjunction.  Her Sun also conjuncts Uranus, so she is capable of pulling surprises out of the bag.  Another aspect to her Sun is an exact sextile from Neptune, so dancing is one of her strengths.  In all, with so many strong aspects to her Sun she has a tremendous sense of her own individuality.  The feminine side of life is not straightforward, with three squares to her Moon.  But she also has Pluto and Neptune supporting her Moon, so again when it counts she can dig deep and find what she needs.  Jupiter conjunct Pluto lends more power to her elbow, and Uranus conjunct Pluto gives her an anarchic energy, which can be useful at times.  She showed a steamy side in last night’s dance, but could come into her own with the wilder dances.  At the beginning of the competition, Uranus conjuncts her natal Saturn and Chiron opposes her Pluto, so it is quite an effort for her.  At the close of the contest, Uranus opposes her Mercury, so she may be feeling the accumulated strain of the competition.  Looking at the midpoint of the competition (to try and find some supportive transits, as there is no doubt she has dancing talent), Mars trines her Sun (she finds her fighting spirit), Mars squares her Saturn (working really hard) and Mars sextiles her natal Neptune (she is really in her rhythm).

She is partnered with the incomparable Brendan Cole, one of my favourites.  I have written in the past: “His ‘bad boy’ image funnily enough comes from his conjunction of the Sun and Chiron, which wants to do things his way – in the past it got him into hot water with the judges.”  In their chemistry, her Pluto trines his Mercury, so she makes him think.  Their Venuses are in exact opposition, which could provide tension but could be complementary in the way they express their art.  Her Jupiter sextiles exactly his Mars, so they support each other’s energy well.  His Pluto sits on her South Node, so there may be heavy past-life karma between them.  At the start of the competition, Chiron is sextile his Mercury, so he is mentally stimulated.  Saturn will be on his Neptune in the middle of the contest, which suggests some dampening circumstance.  At the finish however, he has North Node trine his Jupiter, which could be personally gratifying (he has been mooted as possible successor to Len).  He won the first ever Strictly contest, but I don’t think he will win this year, taking his transits into account together with Anastacia’s.

Aspects

Tomorrow (Monday 26th) is the stand-out day this week, with the stand-out conjunction of the Sun and Jupiter occurring in the morning.  This is one of the best aspects to occur during the course of the year, and depending on what House it occupies in your chart, it will bring corresponding benefits.  If you need further clarification, read my blog of 4th September about Jupiter in Libra.  It is a time to go for goals and go for gold.

“Always believe in your soul
You’ve got the power to know
You’re indestructible”

in the immortal words of Spandau Ballet, or more specifically Gary Kemp, who wrote this song as a spoof on James Bond themes.  It’s good enough for tomorrow.

More rewards come in the afternoon, with Pluto stationary prior to turning direct.  Psychological researches start to yield fruit.  You may feel that you are starting to make progress in a fundamental way, and that the tide is with you.

On Tuesday (27th) morning Mars enters Capricorn.  You may have gone as far as you could, pushing with a line of philosophy, e.g. goal-centred growth.  Now you will need to apply your philosophy, or modify it, in order to try to achieve something practical to show for your outlook on life.  You’ll need to be more organized in the use of your energies, and think about a structure for your life to put those energies into.

Just past midnight on Friday (30th), in the very early hour of Saturday (1st Oct), we have a New Moon at 8 degrees Libra, a chance to put into practice your newly applied philosophy and structures if you have been working on them this week.  If you have been working on other lines also, you can create a new beginning, especially if it concerns relationships or the Arts.  New harmony or peace may break out in some quarters, too.  This New Moon has a soothing quality.  It will be likely to occur in the same House in your birthchart as Monday’s Sun-Jupiter conjunction, so if you experienced benefits in your life on that day, the new beginning may pertain to the same area of your life.

Saturday has further delights in store: late afternoon brings a trine between Venus and Neptune, which is absolutely inspired for artistic and musical ventures.  Practising your dance moves could be an ecstatic experience, and Strictly Come Dancing will see some exceptional moves.  Saturday afternoon and evening should prove positively breathtaking for all, both participants and audiences, in the field of the arts.  There is also a subtle aura of romance in the air.

The week in bullet points:

  • Tomorrow – luck and progress
  • Tuesday – forging on ahead with ambition
  • Saturday – new beginning and inspiration