The New Year – Part 1 (January 2017)
Whence – Where – Whither
Part 1 – Whence
As our civil calendar turns the page to a New Year, it seems most fitting to look back upon the year just past so that we might better understand from whence we have come; to consider where we are now; and to look out ahead and see if we might discern more clearly whither we are going.
Regardless what the planets and stars may provide, we must always remember that although they are the Avatars of the energies that inform and guide our lives, it remains for us to determine what use we will make of these “Gifts of the Spirit”. As the great bard, Shakespeare wrote in his play Julius Caesar:
“The fault, dear Brutus, is not in our stars,
But in ourselves, that we are underlings.”
It is upon each of us to do our part, to listen for our “voice of the silence”, our higher self, our spiritual compass, and choose how we shall strive to make ourselves better and so create a better world for those who come after us. How these energies play out, as they surround, inform and hold us as one to one another, depend upon the development of our spiritual triad, our Wisdom-Love-Will. It is by our self-unfoldment or spiritual growth that we may more gracefully embody these energies, and find our way to their best application and most beneficent manifestation.
The most consequential Astrological alignment for 2016 was the square between the planets Saturn and Neptune. Their cycle, from conjunction to conjunction, is about 36 years in duration and they will form their most challenging aspects, (conjunction, waxing square, opposition and waning square), roughly 9 years apart. Their most recent cycle began at the conjunction of 1989, leading to their waxing square of 1998 and to their opposition of 2006-07, and finally to their waning square this past year, (they will start a new cycle at their conjunction in 2026).
Their serial revolutions articulate the relationship between Order (Saturn) and Dreams (Neptune), or Reality and Fantasy, or Responsibility and Sacrifice. In the realm of Mundane or Worldly Astrology, of Political-Economic-Cultural phenomena, it is interesting to note that the three most recent conjunctions of Saturn and Neptune, perfectly align with the birth of the USSR (1917), the Cold War (1952-3) and the collapse of the Communist order (1989).
For Person-Centered Astrology, for you and I, whenever we experience these alignments of Saturn and Neptune, we should see it as an opportunity to examine how closely we are holding together, in a meaningful and responsible manner, the delicate and integral balance between our dreams and our reality. There are precious moments in any one life, or in the lives of a people, when their dream becomes reality. But there are those despair-filled times too, when the chasm between reality and the dream is (seemingly) unbridgeable.
There are those precious moments in time and space when what we believe and what we experience are in greater resonance, so that what we imagine our world should be like is what we indeed encounter. And there are times, such as this past year, when what is “really real”, what is undeniably a “fact” and what is fictional (or false) become hopelessly confused.
What are we, (or what were we supposed), to do when faced with such confusion and misunderstanding? The square aspect between two planets quite literally calls upon us to face this these two Avatars, in this case Saturn and Neptune, not with fear or apprehension, but with a renewed and Reasonable Faith combined with a Compassionate Realism. We need to bring the two Energy-Forms together, for that is the path of Spirit, the Integral Path, for it is by this that you will find and forge a new or better way. We should embrace this and every such turning as a necessary challenge and opportunity for growth.
If all the Great Teachings are true, then the entirety of Creation is Spirit. If so, then the one constant of this Universe is Growth. Then it follows that the other constant of this Universe of Spirit is Change too. We need to consider how we can find a Pathway that helps us to continually clarify our Dreams and to fold them into an ever more meaning-filled Reality. We need to find a way through both our internal divisions and the divisions between one another, so that we might heal the divide between our present Reality and our Hopes and Dreams for a better world.
Since Neptune is the dominant influence, (being the outermost planet), the challenge/opportunity was for each of us to allow Neptune to help us to slip beyond our assumptions/certainties about the nature of our reality and at least imagine (if not come to understand and believe) that there were other dreams and realities that are co-present and co-existing. That all of these sub-realities, from the smallest to the largest “Dream-Realities”, are part of the One, the Greater Reality in which we truly abide.
Part of Neptune’s way is to dissolve or eat away at the fabric of our perception of reality so that it can be re-formed, re-shaped and transformed into a more encompassing experience of what we truly abide in, that Greater Reality. Typically, we move from a period of certainty about our assumptions about our world into a period of doubt and misunderstanding. These will begin to grow and create greater dissonance leading to greater doubts, claims and counter-claims as to what is true or false. Finally, many if not most will find themselves in a state of great confusion and mistrust, doubting themselves and one another, as a commonly accepted dream-reality gives way because the bonds of affinity between individuals and groups dissolve.
Without a shared understanding, without an agreement as to what are the dreams we share and what is the reality we face, without this widely shared Dream-Reality, the shadows of fear and blame are unleashed. This breakdown in a shared Dream-Reality erodes our trust in one another, and undermines our shared sense of commitment to, and willingness to sacrifice for, the good of one another.
But do not “blame” the Planet Neptune. This Neptunian fog of dissolution is not here to bring about harm to you or your world. It is merely there to reveal what was and is becoming more and more apparent. That forever and always you and your world were changing, and you had reached a time which required a letting go of your limited assumptions so that you might find a way to create a more encompassing Dream-Reality for yourself and your world.
These Illuminations of Neptune are stronger now than they have been for a very long time, and that is because Neptune is currently moving through its own sign of Pisces from 2011 until 2026. The last time Neptune was in Pisces was from 1848-1862, and it was a time of great Spiritual, Artistic and Social transformation…and it will be so in our own time too.
Then as now the paradigm of beliefs shifted, and for a time the meaning and purpose of what should be the foundation of Dream-Reality was contested by individuals and groups. Certainly, it was no accident that here in America, it was when the awful crime against Spirit at the founding of our nation, the abomination of slavery, was confronted and ultimately abolished.
May you find a similar courage to face your shadows and fears today.
You can find your way forward by remembering to honor and to hold to the fundamental teachings that have guided you through the best and the worst of times.
May you find comfort and guidance in the great teachings, stories and lives of those who have walked these same paths that you must follow too. Their example of Wisdom, Love and Centered Will is there for you:
Be guided by the Wise Ones, who know there is no religion higher than Truth.
Walk the path of the Great-Souls, who practice the Wisdom of Love.
Find inspiration in the Lonely Ones, their Willing-Sacrifice honored by
the Angels and Devas above.
Listen for the Voice of the Silence, attend the gentle whispers in your Heart,
And you will find “The Way”.
The New Year – Part 2 (January 2017)
Whence – Where – Whither
Part 2 – Where
A New Year is upon us, and you need to know what do the signs in the heavens portend? You can perceive the facts or reality of your world as they appear to you. But what is behind that appearance or phenomena of reality. What are the “Noumena” behind the appearances? What are the deeper forces coursing through your world that can inform and guide your journey today? What you need to know is “Where” am I now?
As 2017 begins two major alignments are in place: Jupiter is Opposite to Uranus from December 2016 until September 2017; and, Jupiter is Squaring Pluto from November 2016 through August 2017. What this means is that you are going through something this year that is somewhat like what you encountered in 2013. That was when Jupiter was squaring Uranus; and Jupiter was Opposite Pluto.
This also serves as a reminder that the major aspect from 2012, of Uranus Squaring Pluto, is still here in 2017. The Uranus/Pluto aspect is the major theme of this decade. Their relationship, along with Pluto moving through the sign of Capricorn, forms the fundamental Energy-Form, the deepest melody of spirit, constituting our challenge and opportunity to find a better integral balance of Freedom and Order. This ongoing challenge is still thrumming through your world this year, (just as it did during their conjunction in the 1960’s, or their previous square in the 1930’s…and yes, many people have noted how similar “our” time now is to those two periods…and they are correct to do so).
But for our period there is an added over-tone, the march of Pluto through Capricorn, (from 2008 to 2024), also carries the echoes of its previous passages through this sign, (1516-1532 and 1762-1778). The earlier period accompanied the breakup of the Feudal Order, the rise of Absolute Monarchies, and the splitting of the Catholic Faith; the latter period accompanied the Fall of Monarchies and the Rise of Parliamentary Democracies. Each time an old world was superseded by the emergence of a new Spiritual-Political-Cultural-Economic order. Each also witnessed the emergence of a new kind of “human”, as New Thought-Forms and New Forms of Self-Realization co-created a new kind of human, a new human-kind.
The peoples of those periods, as we in our time, found themselves in a “world turned upside down”, with social bonds breaking, institutions collapsing, and the withering of old sources of influence or power and the emergence of new ones. For us, as it was for them, we also find our very way of life, and the institutions that are supposed to embody, preserve and protect our society and culture, seemingly falling apart around us.
The good news? Our forebears survived, and prospered…and so should we. We have been here in some way many times before, and we will find our way through this trouble-filled time too. For this year, (and always), you can rely upon the Wisdom of the Stars, as conveyed to you especially now by the twin messaging of Jupiter Opposite Uranus, and Jupiter Square Pluto.
Jupiter is the Avatar of Philosophy, Science and Religion. It forms and informs how you relate to your world, as it represents the beliefs that shape and guide your actions. During its three passes over Uranus and Pluto it will be shining this light of understanding from the Sign of Libra as it is modulated by Uranus’ position in Aries, and Pluto’s in Capricorn.
The message of Uranus/Jupiter addresses the delicate balance (or the necessity of maintaining an ever-present and dynamic equilibrium), between, 1) Being more truly oneself as an individual, (Uranus in Aries), while at the same time, 2) Evolving greater social intelligence so that in any relationship you can bring about a mutually beneficial experience of self-fulfillment in your relationships with one another, (Jupiter in Libra).
Uranus in Aries argues for Freedom for the Self above all; Jupiter in Libra counters with the reality that "Reality is Relationship", that the Universe is a web of inter-connectivity and without this nothing (and no one), could exist. Taken to extremes, which opposing planets can often do, you have Absolute Individuality opposed by Absolute Community. What are you to do?
As always, the path of truth is found “in-between”, upon that noble middle path of integration. Each of these truths, Individualism vs. Communalism, each of them depends upon the other, are truly part of one another. Each taken to an extreme is anti-spirit, anti-truth. Only by holding and balancing them, one with one another, only there can you find the weaving-way of your true spiritual nature.
Each of us is a unique spark of the Divine; yet each of us is also the very collective-creation made from all our interactions/interrelationships with one another too…We are each a unique “one of a kind”; but we are all of some “kind”, inseparably made by one another and of one another, and so out of the many we are also One.
The message of Pluto/Jupiter addresses the equally delicate balance between, 1) Exercising your Will/Power as articulated by the various hierarchical roles in your culture (Pluto in Capricorn), while at the same time, 2) Guiding that Will’s application by the social contracts (implicit and explicit) whose basis is formed by the Beliefs-Truths of your culture that become enshrined/enforced into Laws, and that these Ideals are what shape and determine what is the rightful exercise and limits of your will (Jupiter in Libra).
Pluto in Capricorn has been exerting tremendous pressures since 2008, and these cathartic waves have eroded the normal institutional foundations as well as constraints for Will and Power in your world. These transformational forces of Pluto are disrupting the institutional structures of power, creating a loss of confidence in institutions as well encouraging the emergence of new, contending sources of Will and Authority.
Reactionary forces, seeking to preserve power and privilege, by seeking to hold onto their prerogatives, become ever more abusive of their power. Meanwhile, the emergence of new sources of power and will puts them in contention with the old ways, and further erodes the confidence in the reality structures of your world. Both the legitimate and abusive attempts to preserve the old, and the creative and destructive attempts to replace the old order, lead to ever greater crises in your institutions and culture.
Pluto in Capricorn is doing what it is supposed to do, tearing down the old ways so that a New World can come into being. Jupiter in Libra can provide a beacon of light as you seek to find your way in a world careening through fractured realms of reality/myth, fact/falsehood, truth/lies. The principle questions are: from where does any wielder of power derive their Authority; and what guides and limits their exercise of their Will and Power?
In our time, as in those previous periods of transformation, the answers will not be found in the latest iterations of Right vs. Might. Rather, whenever this catharsis and re-birth of society shakes the foundations of a world, it shatters the appearances of things to reveal once again the greater truths upon which your Journey in Spirit will forever remain centered and secured.
You are here now to remember…
You are here now because you are to stand in the Light of Universal Spiritual Truths.
A world must pass for a new world to emerge, but the core elements that bind together all the worlds that were, are and are yet to be remain. Look to the Great Ones, the teachers who serially come forth to re-state the Ancient Wisdom. More than their thoughts, look at their way of being, how their embodiment of Universal Truths in their lives shine a light for us to follow. The teachers do not require or need your worship; they have come to inspire you to life a spiritually integral life.
With regards to “human” laws, look to the sacred history of the great lawgivers, the Laws of Manu in India, to Babylon and the Codex Hammurabi, to the Laws of Rome, our own Declaration of Independence, to the Declaration of the Rights of Man and to the Universal Declaration of Human Rights. All these human laws find their Fountain-Source of everlasting Truth in the Fundamental Teachings of all Ages, The Ancient Wisdom.
A core principle, a fundamental Law of that Ancient Wisdom is this:
Every speck and mote of this Creation, every being, world and Galactic System has at its core a spark of the one Divine Flame. This core of Light and Love anchors the Sacred Space within which that being abides. It is by and through this Sacred Center of Love-Light that every Life-Consciousness-Spirit finds their own center, their own space of Will-Power, and yet this truth equally affirms our essential connection to one another too. For what abides in that center of one and all is a Divine Spark of the One Divine Light. Truly we are inseparable, because of our origin in the One, and through all our many Lives and Loves we are held together, all our little Wills held in loving understanding by the Love and the Will of the One.
Therefore, whomever you encounter is another just like you. In fact, in their heart of hearts they are already of you and you are of them. This law, founded by your origin in and of the One, and bound together by your sacred center that is a spark of this One, means that before me is another self-luminous dew-drop of the one Divine Light. To bring about or cause harm to this or any other is to irrevocably do equal harm to myself.
This is The Law of Karma: That whatever you create, whatever action, feeling or thought you make will return to you. This is the source of the Great Teaching regarding relationship found in all sacred teachings:
“Do unto others as you would have them do unto you.
For you are all related, and what you do to the least of these,
You do unto me, The One."
This is Sacred Law…
This is the Source of Right and Truth…Love.
Follow the Ancient Wisdom, follow your heart.
Love one another,
The New Year – Part 3 (January 2017)
Whence – Where – Whither
Part 3 – Whither
Having considered where we have come from, and where we are now, it remains for us to attempt to be “seers”, to lift our hearts and minds to consider the dawning of our tomorrows.
As I have mentioned in many interviews and postings, the changes you and your world are witnessing only come upon us every 250 years or so. This end of an age is also the birth of a New World…and it is this transition, this precarious-precious moment is your Responsibility. That you are here now is no accident, whatever you may think your life is for…this, this is your True Purpose:
You are here to wisely pass on the best of what was, and to lovingly protect and nurture the birth of this New Earth. You are here for those who come after, your children, and your children’s children.
As you attempt to see around the next corner of time, what might you find waiting for you on your path of Destiny in the years to come?
We will be under the influence of Pluto in Capricorn until 2024. The catharsis-metamorphosis it has brought into the Hierarchies of Reality is hardly complete, in fact we are only half-way through this cycle of re-birth. The tests of Will and Power in the hierarchical structures of your world will continue to reverberate through all realms, personal, social, economic and political. When it moves into Aquarius, you will more clearly begin to see your hard-won conservation/preservation/renewal efforts reveal the New World that is dawning.
Likewise the mysterious, magical and Illuminative passage of Neptune will continue until 2026. The boundaries between corporeal and incorporeal realms will continue to become ever more porous. True Spiritual intimations will be counter-pointed with the Illusionary, (the confusing and dissipating forms of the lower astral planes), and it will take great wisdom to discern from what realm your inspirations or nightmares come.
Do not “force” spiritual intuition or perceptions, let them grow naturally, so that you may find your “clear-seeing” through a balanced accord and integration with your spiritual maturity and wisdom. Inspiration and Creativity in the Arts will soar, and the whispers of new tomorrows will exert ever stronger pulls on both dreamers and fear-mongers alike. Stand in your truth, hew to the Ancient Wisdom and find your Faith in the renewal of your power as a Creator.
2017 will be the last full year for Uranus in Aries. During 2018 it will begin to enter Taurus, only to retreat into Aries in November 2018, and return to Taurus for 7 years in March 2019. Uranus, the Awakener, will turn his attention from the realm of Idealistic Passions and Drives (Aries), to the realm of Values and Substance. The shock and awe of the “New Thought-Forms” from 2010-2018 will give way to the necessity of Innovative Applications. The question will be: which of these new ways of thinking will work in fact?
Equally, the Hierarchy of Value, of what is desired or more treasured in our society will go through great change. Some values that were the most prized of treasures will fade away, (for example: coal, oil), and a range of values will be challenged and reassessed. There will be a resurgence and renewal of spiritual values, which will lead to the healing of the material imbalances and devastations that imperil life on our Earth.
At the very end of 2017, Saturn will move from Sagittarius into Capricorn. Whatever Sign Saturn is moving through, that is the “space” where you and your world will have the opportunity to grow and learn. By confronting error and choosing to do better, through your hard-won efforts at self-improvement, this will be exactly the place where you will reveal your truly spiritual nature. You need to always remember, that you are here for one thing, you are here quite simply to grow.
Since 2015 your spiritual tests and opportunities for growth were focused in the sign of Sagittarius, your tests have been “Tests of Truth”. When Saturn enters Capricorn, (its “own” sign) in December 2017, your tests will move from the realm of Ideals, Principles and Laws to the realm of Substantiation. Your test will be to align your Ideals and your Reality.
While Saturn is in Capricorn, you will face your challenges in the realm of Responsibilities, Duties and how well you understand your own true Purpose. The spiritual questions will not be about “Success” or “Power”, the fundamental question will be how do you understand what it means to be truly Fulfilled? Capricorn is about your Destiny, and the answer is found in your Origin. Do you know and remember what you truly are? Do you understand that you are part of an Integral Hierarchy of Spirit, and that all of Life is Sacred? You are here to Fulfill your Responsibilities, to yourself, to your family, to your community…to Life itself.
From September 2016 until October 2017, Jupiter will be moving through Libra. Then from October 2017 until November 2018, Jupiter will be in Scorpio. As I noted in Part 2 of this three-part series, the dominant role of Jupiter in 2017 will be experienced in the interplay between it and the planets Uranus and Pluto. The struggle to balance Freedom/Individuality (Uranus) and Power/Authority (Pluto) will be informed by Jupiter’s passage through Libra, which is modulating the Uranus/Pluto square with the Principles embodied in Right Relationships. The key is to relate to yourself and to one another within a Dynamic Equilibrium, where an Integral balance of Self-Sacrifice and Self-Realization will foster and preserve right relationships.
In December 2017 and throughout most of 2018, Jupiter in Scorpio will move into a Beautifully Harmonious relationship with the planet Neptune in Pisces. The Wisdom and Guidance of Jupiter in Scorpio is focused upon the processes and challenges you encounter in forging, maintaining and dissolving the Unions of your life. The principal challenge you face in this sphere concerns the necessity of Sacrifice.
Throughout your journey, whether joining with one other in an intimate relationship, or joining with many in a joint venture, you will be required to give up something(s) to be or work with them. The problem is that you may surrender something of you that makes you “you”, (this is known as a “false-sacrifice”), and if you do so your attempt to forge or maintain a union ends up being harmful to yourself (and often to others), and the union will and must inevitably fail.
The Intuitive Inspirations of Neptune this year will provide a deeper understanding of the nature of the Union you are in or are trying to form. Your clearer-seeing (clairvoyance) will permit you to more adeptly perceive what is and what is not negotiable within you, and it will shine a greater light of understanding upon the other(s) as to whether there is enough common value to hold you to one another in a union in the first place.
More generally, the Trine of Jupiter and Neptune will foster larger ranges of Spiritual experiences, and there will be a greater need for and more moving experiences of Loving Compassion and Empathy. There will be a significant elevation in and appreciation for Creativity and the Arts. Both the Spiritual and Artistic realms in your world will fulfill their Highest functions, to bring ever greater meaning and benefic influences into your life and World.
The New Year – Part 4 – The USA (January 2017)
In the previous three essays, I have examined the recent past, present and near future of Universal Astrological conditions, (what are termed “transits to transits"), that form the overall Energy-Forms prevailing during any particular period of time. In this essay, I will provide some analysis of the more important transits and significant features of the Charts of the USA. In the following essay I will examine the chart and transits for Donald Trump.
The repeated alignments of a particular planet to a feature in any chart will always exhibit a specific quality. But the exact nature of the experience will change depending upon what other astrological aspects are in effect for that chart, combined with the influences formed by the general astrological conditions that are also in effect.
The most important transit in the chart of the USA for 2016 was the Square of Uranus to the USA Mercury. The circuit of Uranus around the zodiac takes approximately 84 years, so that Uranus will form a “hard” aspect to Mercury in any chart every 21 years or so. Moreover, the interpretation of these effects will vary with the exact type of contact (Conjunction, Waxing Square, Opposition or Waning Square).
The current cycle of Uranus to the USA Mercury began with the conjunction of 1954-55, leading to the waxing square of 1973-74, arriving at the opposition of 1994, and finally to the waning square of 2016-17. Every time this contact occurs, the thought-forms and the forms of communication in the USA are shook up and transformed. But in terms of the same moment in this cycle, (the waning square), the last occurrences were in 1933-34 and 1849-50.
The previous similar transit of 1933-34 accompanied the many transformational efforts and reactionary pushbacks to FDR’s “New Deal”, with many governmental programs invented/instituted to deal with the crisis of the Great Depression accompanied by strident opposition from those opposed to government expansion.
The 1849-50 transit, saw the tumultuous struggle to “solve” the problem of slavery with the “Compromise of 1850”, regarding the admission of the territories secured in the Mexican War as to whether they would be a free or slave state. Part of this compromise also witnessed the enactment of the “Fugitive Slave Law” requiring free states to return escaped slaves, and the Supreme Court made slavery a protected institution. This “compromise” only served to delay the inevitable showdown between two incompatible and disparate ways of life, between a society founded upon freedom for all or bondage for many.
Really, in both cases, the thought-forms of the time were put to the test with regards as to whether the people of the USA accept, understand and share with one another enough commonly held beliefs, which are the spiritual-intellectual-emotional bonds to hold them to one another in mutual understanding. Each period brought into sharp relief, the differences between groups and regions of the country. Old forms of thinking were challenged by new ones, and attempts to return to the “old ways” versus leaping into new ones caused frictions and fractures in the society.
Uranus is known as the “Awakener”, whose thunderbolts of “new ways of thinking and of new ideas”, serve to shake you and your world. Mercury rules the Mind and communications generally, and so their combination is very apropos. In a mundane chart (like a corporation or in this case a nation), the natal planets will denote specific qualities of that entity. Mercury rules the Thought-Forms of the people in general, the Communications and Transportations of a country, the Literary world and the Intelligentsia, the Press, Educators and Educational Institutions.
Mercury indicates for a nation, the overall capacity to form a consensus for understanding Reality, the means for acquiring information, and the ability to discern fact from fiction.
Certainly, the US experience of 2016 is one that shook up the ordinary in what we “heard, thought and shared” with one another. The normal boundaries of speech, the agreements of commonly shared assumptions and truths, the considerations of social discourse that depend upon our tolerance for one another grounded in mutual respect, these “norms” were broken down or even shattered.
Literally, the nervous system of many, and the mentality of the times, was rocked back and forth leading to a growing condition of spiritual dis-ease, with mental, emotional and physical exhaustion becoming the norm and bane for many.
In the chart of the USA, the most important aspect of Mercury is the opposition to the planet Pluto, the ruler of Will-Power. The combination of Mercury with Pluto creates a “mentality” with great powers of observation and concentration, uniquely endowed with a capacity for research, with the ability to delve into greater depths of understanding and equally extend the range of comprehension.
But equally, when misapplied, as is often the case with an opposition, this combination of the Will and Mind can lead to obsessional thinking, a will-fullness and determination that can lead to the attempt to bend others to a certain belief or thought. When Might makes Right, then reason, consideration, understanding and our tolerance for one another will fail.
Our democracy depends upon the free exchange of ideas, where there is a mutual respect and tolerance for one another to underpin and preserve our free exchange of thoughts, so that our ideas may compete with one another, and from this we may find the best and brightest ideas to bring about the most beneficent effects for one and all. It is this very crucible of forging better understanding with and between one another that will face an even greater challenge in 2017.
For as much as 2016 was characterized by the surging disquiet and disruption in thought-forms for the USA with Uranus over Mercury, it was already eliciting/activating the planet in opposition to Mercury, Pluto. In 2017 Uranus, will be exactly squaring Pluto (while still influencing Mercury). Uranus is the Avatar of Freedom and Individuality, and Pluto is the Avatar of Will and of Power. Much as the world in general has been undergoing the struggle of Uranus Squaring Pluto for several years now, it will now take center stage in our very own national chart in 2017.
There has been much discussion of late, and observations here and around the world, of the rise (and seeming) appeal of Authoritarianism. Certainly, the continuing alignments of Uranus and Pluto, (much as their similar square heralded in the 1930’s, and many observers have noted how our time mirrors that one), and the unease and uncertainties brought about the “end of an age” with Pluto swinging through Capricorn, have led some to seek a simpler answer to their troubles, they look for their salvation in a “strong” leader.
But throughout history, and as our founders who wrote the Declaration of Independence and our Constitution knew all too well, (having themselves thrown off a monarchical or absolute despotism), the end result of investing one or a few with too much power is Tyranny.
That is precisely why our system is built and based upon a series of “checks and balances”, so that power is distributed and not concentrated. The heart and cornerstone of our self-government is the principle of “Free Speech”. It is no accident that this sacred principle is enshrined in the 1st Amendment:
“Congress shall make no law respecting an establishment of religion, or prohibiting the free exercise thereof; or abridging the freedom of speech, or of the press; or the right of the people peaceably to assemble, and to petition the Government for a redress of grievances.”
Uranus squaring Pluto is the integral struggle to balance Freedom and Will. It is a reminder to you that the true and Spiritual use of your Will is so that you can become Self-Masterful, and that you are here to learn to Respect one another and to exercise Self-Control. It is a Spiritual crime to abuse this power, and the use of the Will to dominate or subjugate others is known as (Spiritual) Trespassing. (Again, it is no accident that it is one of the “Ten Commandments”).
There will be times, such as what you now encounter, where some will attempt to force their Ideas upon you, to “box” you in, to diminish and damage the sacred Hierarchy of Responsibility and attempt to divide you from one another. But as much as Pluto and the Will may be used illegitimately as the power to bring unjust force upon another, know that it is equally your Power to Resist this too.
Do not let yourself be “boxed in” or divided from one another. Do not accept the efforts by some to foster a “False Reality”, as they seek to weaken other sources of Reason and Authority, and by so doing seek to break down the common bonds which hold us to one another in Faith and Love.
Authoritarians seek to hold all power, which depends upon their efforts to divide you from your loving Spiritual nature. They will attempt to create a “simple reality” of “Us and Them”, of “Light and Dark”. They will whisper (and shout) that only they have the answer…but your higher self will remind you, that these are the shadow-forms of damaged minds and spirits, these are the lies of lost and broken souls.
Remember who you are, and why you are here: Always maintain the integrity of your own space of spirit, which can only be achieved when you equally respect, preserve and defend the sacred space of one and all.
Keep your mind Strong, yet equally Supple and Nuanced, by holding to the highest principles of Spirit, the foremost being this:
“You are all related, and what you do to the least of these you do to the One”.
Above all, do not be divided from one another.
Remember who you are, you are seekers and storytellers, and from sharing your thoughts and wisdom with one another you will prevail. Tell your stories to one another, so that you may Strengthen your common bonds and understanding.
By this you will preserve, protect and defend yourself, your world and one another.
All this you will do if you hold in your heart the Primary Spiritual Triad:
May you Speak with Wisdom…
May you Live by Love…
May you Be all for one, and one for All.
The New Year – Part 5 – Donald Trump (January 2017)
When we consider the Astrology chart of an individual, there are so many factors to consider, (planets, signs, houses, aspects and aspect patterns), that it can seem quite overwhelming as to how to proceed. I have found it most useful to start from an overview of the entire chart and then proceed to slowly discern the various interlaced energy-forms that the chart contains.
First, we should step back and take the whole chart in. After all, an astrological chart is a Sky Map, a picture of the planetary positions, as seen from a specific place on the Earth, on a certain day and time. We are looking at the heavens above, so let’s step back and take it all in to discern the overall message of the chart. What we will find is that astrological charts fall into certain types of patterns, which provides this first sense of meaning for the chart.
The pattern of Donald Trump’s chart is called a Bowl or Hemispheric pattern, with all planets lined up on one side of the chart, and the other half remaining open or empty. This bowl pattern implies a great degree of self-containment. Here is a soul that is moved or affected more by external circumstances than by internal factors. He has a strong sense of mission, a sense that he possesses something (the filled bowl), and that he lacks or needs something, (the empty space). He will be driven, purposeful and feel he has a destiny to fulfill.
The critical or high focus part of the Bowl pattern is formed by the leading planet or edge of the bowl. In Trump’s chart, the leading planet is Uranus in his 10th house of career, public life and purpose. Uranus is the “Awakener”, and brings about change through shocks and upsets. Not only is it his leading planet, but it is also the uppermost planet in his chart, and, most significantly, it is next to his Sun and opposite to his Moon. A very, very great deal about Trump is summed up by this combination of factors: Sun in Gemini, Moon in Sagittarius, with Uranus conjunct the Sun and Opposite to the Moon.
Gemini is an Air Sign, known for its intelligence, curiosity, adaptability and restlessness. Gemini rules the mind in its capacity to consider things from more than one point of view or perspective, to perceive the world through multiple “lenses”, to assume multiple positions in order to consider which view or views seems most meaningful, revealing or exceptional. When applied in right ways, Gemini is our faculty of Intelligence.
Geminis love to “stir things up”. They can hold one position and then swing to the opposite position without skipping a beat. Geminis are often “high-strung, nervous types” with a constant need to take in and push out information. Their avidity and thirst for information, and their insistent need to share these multiple thoughts can push the envelope of reason to that razor’s edge that lies between genius and insanity. Keeping up with, and following the stream of consciousness of some Geminis can be fascinating, but sometimes frustrating and fruitless.
Being born at the Full Moon, Trump has his Moon in the opposite Sign of Sagittarius. The Moon rules the emotional life, the emotional needs, the ingrained and unconscious habit patterns of reactions/interactions, and will reveal how a person will act or react without thinking. (And though we humans like to think of ourselves as mindful and intelligent, we live a great deal of our lives on “autopilot”, something happens and we will often react without much thought at all).
The Moon in Sagittarius is very free-wheeling, open and outspoken, so that it leads to a person who will feel and speak with little or no restraint. There is basically no filter at all, whatever is in their feeling-thinking in the moment is what you are going to get.
The opposition of the Sun and Moon, (the two principle indicators of our Male and Female natures), will create a critical conflict and imbalance between the Thoughts and Feelings for Trump. The result will be a pulling and pushing within himself, often leading to wider (and wilder) swings between cold intellect and emotionality. If the spiritual-psychological work of accepting and integrating his male/female halves is not achieved, he will be subject to extreme restlessness, impulsiveness and impatience.
This combination of Gemini and Sagittarius could be harnessed and balanced if other factors in his chart were to bring in some restraint and grounding. There are some factors in his chart that could help. However, the principle planet affecting both his Sun and Moon is the planet that rules the “earthquakes of life”, Uranus.
The conjunction of the Sun with Uranus means that Trump will stand out, and never blend in. His life will be unusual, full of exceptional moments that break through boundaries. Born to rebel, he would have been independent and defiant as a child, and he would have developed a view of himself as not subject to normal rules or expectations. He can exhibit brilliance and flashes of great insight, but he will at times be equally unable to restrain himself from distractions and erratic behaviors.
Again, even this challenging set of factors could have been combined with stabilizing elements to modulate and mitigate his nature. But in Trump’s chart the energies of instability (and chaos) are doubled-down by Uranus also being in opposition to his Moon. Trump will look upon feelings (and women) with great distrust because they are for him so unpredictable and unknowable. By being dismissive of and not in touch with his feeling nature, he will swing wildly between his peripatetic intellect and chaotic emotions. His thoughts will lack true empathy and compassion; his emotions uninformed by his reason. He will be capable of brilliance yet lack empathy, he will be sentimental but not caring. Trump may remain divided within himself; he would be unsettled and unstable.
Many commentators have assumed that Trump’s way of acting (and reacting) is purely an act, and that he employs the “principles of chaos” as a master manipulator to upend his adversaries and achieve his ends. What his chart reveals is that this is no act. Trump is unstable by nature. He is simply unpredictable because he probably cannot control himself.
The planetary ruler for Gemini is Mercury, which for Trump is in the sign of Cancer. Though he will consider himself to be a man of reason, possessing a great range of ideas and knowledge, and that he comes to his facts and opinions via his superior intellect, much of his thinking and decision-making is unconsciously influenced by his emotions. He will believe that he is being “reasonable”, when he in fact he is often being blinded by his emotional biases.
But much more troubling is that he also has his Mercury squaring his Neptune, the planet of Dreams and Imagination. Neptune is also, when misapplied or misunderstood, the planet that rules Fantasies, Delusions and Deceptions. Mercury squaring Neptune, if you can master yourself, can be wonderful and make you a great story-teller, it is gift for painters and poets, allowing one to slip beyond the boundaries of reality for inspiration.
But when combined with the inherent instability of his chart, Mercury square Neptune means that Trump will say anything, and mean nothing. He will make something up, and turn around and say the opposite…and probably turn around again and say some third thing. He will employ “smoke and mirrors”; he will claim to speak plainly, and accuse others of being untruthful. He will sow doubt and confusion, he will often promise and not deliver. He is probably not to be believed or trusted much of the time.
One of the more challenging aspects a person may have in their chart is a hard contact between Venus and Saturn. Trump has his Saturn conjunct Venus, which means he experienced conditional forms of love as a child. Rather than being loved truly, he was exposed to “love” that was given or withheld as a tool for reward or punishment. This is not love, this is the abusive power wielded by an authoritarian parent, most likely the father.
Without significant help to heal this wound, Trump would have no true experience of healthy “self-love”, nor would he be capable of truly loving another. He would need others to love and admire him to fill the aching hole in his soul. But he would be unable to show real love to another, for he has none to offer. He would be ungenerous, uncharitable and treat others as “objects”, as he can be the only "subject" in any relationship.
This aspect in a chart may indicate and form the conditions for developing “narcissistic personality disorder”. It has been noted, that many of the actions and over-reactions that Trump has displayed in his public life seem to conform to the classic behaviors associated with narcissistic personality disorder.
In short, these delineations from Trump’s chart point to an individual who appears fundamentally unstable, often untruthful, and with a heart that is broken.
The New Year – Part 6 – Donald Trump’s Transits (January 2017)
In the previous essay, I delineated some of the significant natal features in Donald Trump’s chart. Today I will examine some of the major transits in Trump’s chart for 2016-17. Then I will examine the connections between his chart and the chart of the USA in the following essay.
The timing for planetary transits will often cross over from one calendar year to the next. During 2016, there were two very significant transits to Trump’s chart, Uranus squaring his Saturn from spring 2016 until early April 2017, and Pluto squaring his Jupiter, which is in effect from spring 2016 and will last until the late fall of 2017.
Uranus aligning with Saturn in a “strong” manner such as this will occur about every 21-22 years or so. Whenever this transit occurs, Reality is shaken and can in fact be shattered; it is a call to reform/remake that reality (or your understanding and interfacing with Reality), to deal with the necessity for change. It can appear as a great loss; but it is equally the call to seize the opportunity for a new way of being. For Donald, the two previous passes were 1994 and 1973-74.
The more recent date coincided with his successful escape from his failing casino ventures by “going public”; he ended up selling shares in his privately owned and deeply indebted enterprises. He transformed his “reality” from a failure to success. He “socialized” his debt and came out a winner. In the earlier period, the Trump Organization, his father and he, were charged with a consistent and very long practice of racial bias with regards to their rental property empire, in Brooklyn and Queens. They were found to have used various tactics to deny leases to “people of color”. Uranus forced them to change their illegal practices and conform to Reality, to abide by the letter and spirit of the law.
Given the prominence and importance of Uranus in Trump’s chart, he will respond/react even more noticeably than most to this influence. As I noted in the previous essay, Trump is very much a “Uranian man”, with both his Sun/Uranus and Moon/Uranus alignments. His self-characterization follows this theme of Uranus, in his often-stated assertion of being an exceptional man, a genius to whom the normal rules and norms will not apply. He believes in his specialness. He will blaze “new trails”, he will smash the “icons” and break the “boundaries” of normalcy. Trump will most certainly be the carrier for and instrument of change; he will be disruptive and destabilizing.
Saturn is the Avatar of Reality, the structures of personal and professional life, but it also indicates where you will encounter the “shadow” in this life. It is where you have old wounds and fears. But it will be also, by your efforts to deal with your shadow and fear, it is where you may end of wielding your Authority, where you may find your “Role”.
For Trump, with Saturn in the sign of Cancer and in his 11th house, his fears would be centered upon his experience of nurturing and care-giving, the question would be whether he felt secure and happy in his childhood, or did he experience nurturing/security as something that was lost or was never truly there. It is the challenge of Spirit, to realize that each of us must find our way to our own true self, and so become truly centered and stable individuals. Then we are to use that experience to help others find their way to their center and security too.
And, with Saturn in the 11th house, he would long for true friendship, and would feel his destiny is to become a leader of a group or groups. But, he would likely suffer from the experience of various forms of alienation, of not fitting in or belonging, of being “different”. Trump, if not healed of this Saturn test, could end up leading in a group or a cause that was not truly of him.
In 2016-17, Uranus squaring Saturn has elicited once again Trump’s promethean ability to confound the “status quo”, by rebelling against the mainstream in both political parties. He finds himself as the figurehead riding a wave of populist anger directed towards elites and the status quo. More than a few observers have noted the irony of a billionaire, who has pushed the envelope of bending financial regulations, norms and boundaries for his personal gain, having become the leader of a movement born out of the outrage erupting from these very abuses of privilege.
But it is the second major transit, of Pluto over Trump’s Jupiter, that reveals a more complex story with his present rise and exercise of power. Pluto is the Avatar of Will and Power; Jupiter is the Avatar of Truth, Science, Religion and Law. When Pluto is moving over Jupiter in a challenging manner, perhaps twice in a lifetime, the combination of the planet of Power and the planet of Expansion and Growth may lead to tremendous opportunities. But, if this power is mishandled or misdirected it will lead to great difficulties with Justice and the Law.
The previous passage of Pluto to Trump’s Jupiter, a conjunction or planting of a seed, was in 1978-79. This was exactly when he became known as a premier developer. By taking advantage of the difficult economic conditions in the US economy in general and in NYC, Trump was able to arrange a “sweetheart deal” of a 40-year tax abatement in constructing the Grand Hyatt hotel at Grand Central. Most significantly, this was also when Trump leased a site on Fifth Avenue, just down from Tiffany, and built his signature building and current home, known as Trump Tower. This was when Donald Trump became a national name and brand.
In 2016-17, almost 40 years later, Trump has Pluto passing over his Jupiter once more, but this time it is the square aspect which means there will be a much greater challenge and choice in how these energy-forms will combine. The planting of the seed of Pluto/Jupiter in the late 70’s has brought him to this major crossroad and fork in his life. The question will be put to him regarding the exercise of Power as informed, guided and so directed by his Beliefs.
The Plutonian “Test of Power” is an awesome yet challenging experience. Fundamentally, the question for any individual, in exercising their will in any realm, whether that be confined to just the first circle of the family, or in one’s immediate community, in a business or other large enterprises, on up to the leadership of a major world institution, (like the USA), the question will be for that individual:
“Do you understand how you are to be properly guided and directed to wield this power. Do you understand where this power comes from, do you understand whom and what you serve? Will you then follow the path of wisdom so that you are guided to faithfully wield this power and fulfill your purpose?”
The “Test of Power” will come to all of us in many forms. It will always concern this spiritual truth:
We are all vehicles for channeling and focusing the power(s) that we have developed or have had conferred upon us. If we serve “the Source of this power”, understanding what is to be used for, then we will remain centered and grounded in the right exercise of our duty.
If we mistakenly believe that somehow “we are the power”, if we become “inflated” or infatuated with self-referential absolutes and unquestioning certainties, then like in all the great stories, whether in Greek mythologies or the Political dramas in Shakespeare, in the historical examples of leaders such as Napoleon or Richard Nixon, for those who come to believe they are “it”, it is inevitable and necessary that they must fall. What we will always see is that when a human commits the classical error of “hubris”, then it will not be very long before their misuse of power is followed by this reaction, a consequence that they have brought upon themselves through the agency of karma known as “nemesis”.
Really, it is all about Karma, of action and reaction. And the test of power is one of the most profound. That is why we look to those who assume greater authority, to equally be exemplars of humility and grace. This not only protects them but also reassures those over whom they rule that there is a rightful ordering to the world based upon trust and mutual respect.
Trump is facing his greatest test of power, of how well he will faithfully follow the rules governing the exercise of Presidential Power. When Pluto reaches his Saturn in 2020, we will perhaps see the next or final chapter in how well or poorly he understands his test of power and humility.