George Floyd  (1973 – 2020)

Black Lives Matter

I, Too

I, too, sing America.

I am the darker brother.
They send me to eat in the kitchen
When company comes,
But I laugh,
And eat well,
And grow strong.

I’ll be at the table
When company comes.
Nobody’ll dare
Say to me,
“Eat in the kitchen,”

They’ll see how beautiful I am
And be ashamed—

I, too, am America.

~ Langston Hughes (1902 – 1967)

On 25th May an African-American man named George Floyd was knelt on and his neck pinned down by a white policeman in Minneapolis.  The world watched him die.  There have been protests ever since, not just in America, but round the world.  [President Trump’s behaviour and sayings became even more outrageous in the wake of the event, if that were possible.]  This may be a seminal moment in the history of the oppression of black lives.

George Floyd’s birth chart

What do we know of George Floyd?  We know that he had five children, and was a caring provider for them, and lost his job due to the coronavirus crisis.  We know that he has lobbied for a change in the gun laws.  We know that at the time he was being apprehended, his crime was attempting to pass off a fake banknote.  We know he was not a violent or dangerous criminal, therefore not remotely deserving to lose his life.  The actions of the policemen were extremely disproportionate to the crime.  He tested positive for the virus, but had been recovering.

The first thing which leaps out to me in his natal chart is an exact Venus-Neptune conjunction in Sagittarius, conjuring up a phrase often used about him, that he was a “gentle giant” (at 6 foot 4 inches).  Another nuance of this conjunction is that of “global martyrdom”, where Sagittarius = global and Venus exactly conjunct Neptune = martyrdom.  Another aspect in his chart which is definitely problematic is Saturn exactly square Pluto.  Mars square Jupiter gave exuberance and Jupiter trine Pluto a more powerful side (playing basketball in his youth).  Saturn on his South Node in Cancer may have caused him to bring through some difficult past life karma, and Pluto square his Nodal Axis may show that his death has been used karmically to show humanity a profound lesson.

The Murder

In a visual epitome of man’s inhumanity to man, so graphically documented was his death that we know he was pinned down between 8.19 p.m. and 8.27 p.m.  Three other policemen watched without intervening as George Floyd pleaded that he could not breathe.  They were long minutes, which were honoured at his memorial this week by a silence of equal length (8 minutes 45 seconds).  In his transits, Saturn was exactly on his Jupiter, unequivocally symbolic of being pinned down, the freedom of his life squashed from him.


Subsequent to the event, the policeman in charge has been charged with second-degree  murder, and the others who stood by and did nothing have been charged with aiding and abetting second-degree murder.  There have been constant protests since the event, starting with major cities in the U.S., then spreading around the world.  The aim has been to keep the protests peaceful, in the spirit of Martin Luther King, but on Friday a 75-year old white man in Buffalo was knocked unconscious by police and sustained injuries, when policemen were marching by, resulting in the suspension of two police officers.  There has been debate surrounding the validity of protest (what other weapon is there if only peaceful protest?), and outrage that current protests in the U.K. may lead to further spikes in the spread of coronavirus.

In Our Back Yard

“Peaceful protest alone has never brought progress, fairness or justice to black people in the United States. Some would even say that white American capitalist power prefers peaceful protest, since militant protest asks for more than what power is willing to offer at a negotiating table.”

~ black American poet, Jericho Brown, writing in the Guardian on Saturday

It is probably fair to say that there is only a fine line between the “white supremacy” attributed to American society, and the acknowledged “white privilege” in the U.K.  The former term is slightly stronger, and the consequences of the Republican upholding of the gun laws leads to a more violent society, but here in the U.K. we learned from the killing of Stephen Lawrence that our police system was institutionally racist.  (How can we forget the dignity of his parents?)  In more recent years, we have had the summary killing of Mark Duggan sparking the Tottenham riots, and we have had the lamentable Windrush scandal, dishonouring immigrants, compounded by Theresa May in her time at the Home Office.  Meanwhile, our BAME community have been double hit, with their casualties disproportionally hit by the level of fatalities from coronavirus.  The government has acknowledged that fact, but not yet ascertained the cause.


Searching myself, I know that I always cared: when I arrived at University in the Autumn of 1968, after the civil rights movement of Martin Luther King, and three years after the assassination of Malcolm X, one of the first things I did was enrol in a course on the history of black Americans.   I remember the feeling of rage of writers, such as the poet Langston Hughes.

At the time, I assumed things would get better.  I also know that in my life I have done nothing helpful to the cause.  We are being counselled that we now need to be not just non-racist, but actively anti-racist, for this long standing struggle and injustice to come to an end.

A start might be a donation to charities such as Black Lives Matter U.K.:

It seems to me that no less than the integrity of the human race is at stake.


After the intensity of the aspects at the end of last week, we have a hiatus until Thursday, so you can either assimilate the impact of those aspects, prepare for Thursday’s aspect, or a bit of both (with a fourth option of ignoring the aspects altogether).

Thursday 11th brings us the challenge of a square between the Sun and Neptune.  So this week’s meditational practice could centre around the subject of Illusion.  A good friend introduced me to a poem on the subject last summer:

In Broken Images

He is quick, thinking in clear images;
I am slow, thinking in broken images.

He becomes dull, trusting to his clear images;
I become sharp, mistrusting my broken images,

Trusting his images, he assumes their relevance;
Mistrusting my images, I question their relevance.

Assuming their relevance, he assumes the fact,
Questioning their relevance, I question the fact.

When the fact fails him, he questions his senses;
When the fact fails me, I approve my senses.

He continues quick and dull in his clear images;
I continue slow and sharp in my broken images.

He in a new confusion of his understanding;
I in a new understanding of my confusion

~ Robert Graves

So by Thursday morning you may be feeling a little confused, lost, or even  dizzy.  That is not difficult, given that our routines are being disrupted by the coronavirus, and our future seems uncertain.  If you have been preparing, by pondering the nature of illusion, and seeking clarity, you may fare better.  We have, of course, different levels of illusion: there is the worry that the government may be trying to pull the wool over our eyes, there is the insecurity of paranoia, and there is the existential long-standing task of seeing and experiencing ourselves for who we really are.  So, plenty to work on.

Fortunately, the same day, we have Venus sextile Chiron, so some help from loved ones acting as mirrors, and some healing in relationships going on.  So the day may end better than it started, if you can utilize the benefits of Venus sextile Chiron.  It is a good day to combine the Arts with Healing, such as creativity which involves and brings about healing.

There is more illusion on Saturday (13th), but with Mars conjunct Neptune at 20 degrees Pisces, there is a different emphasis.  Mars conjunct Neptune may empower the spirit, but for some it may serve to confuse further (especially if you were not able to fully resolve the issues around illusion from Thursday).  Meditational movement which is combined with spirituality is ideal under this conjunction, such as Tai Chi, Yoga and Qijong.  Some people may be subtly incident-prone under this conjunction, with the feet being particularly vulnerable.  So I would say that mindfulness covers it for Saturday: with mindfulness you can achieve inspired action, and keep yourself safe.

The week in bullet points:

  • Thursday – sorting through illusion; healing with love
  • Saturday – meditation and movement