Full Moon in Capricorn — July 9, 2017, 04:07 UT

July 9th, 2017

The Full Moon in Capricorn early this morning had just passed over the most recently named trans-Neptunian object, Arawn, and was just one degree away from Pluto, approaching it. The Sun in Cancer is in conjunction with Mars.

15810 Arawn is a plutino, discovered already in 1994 by Michael Irwin and Anna Żytkow, and given name about six months ago, in January 2017. Michael Irwin is a British astronomer, so naturally the name came from the Celtic mythology.

15810 Arawn is now very close to Pluto. It has been observed at a much closer distance than most Kuiper belt objects, by the New Horizons spacecraft on its Pluto flyby. Arawn is moving in a very stable orbit, and it may have formed around the same time as Pluto itself. Arawn has been hypothesized to be in a quasi-satellite loop around Pluto. However, this is not agreed upon among astronomers.

In Welsh mythology, Arawn was the king of the otherworld realm of Annwfn. Annwfn was a pleasant place, where mortals stayed eternally young and beautiful. Arawn and Annwfn appear in the Mabinogion, a collection of 11 medieval Welsh folk tales. Honor is a highly valued characteristic throughout the Mabinogi.

Arawn was a psychopomp. He was able to travel between the worlds. In the Mabinogi, a man called Pwyll went hunting and mistakenly got into the realm of Annwfn. He found strange hounds feeding on a stag, chased them off, and fed his own pack on it. Then he met a rider, who turned out to be Arawn, the ruler of Annwfn. Arawn resented the discourtesy of Pwyll and asked Pwyll to trade places with him, and defeat Hafgan, Arawn’s rival. After that they would be friends. From Sioned Davies’s translation of the Mabinogion (Oxford University Press, 2007):

“I will make a firm alliance with you. What I shall do is to put you in my place in Annwfn, and give you the most beautiful woman you have ever seen to sleep with you every night, and give you my face and form so that no chamberlain nor officer nor any other person who has ever served me shall know that you are not me. All this, he said, from tomorrow until the end of the year, and then we shall meet again in this place.”

There were beautiful buildings in Arawn’s court, and the queen was the most beautiful and noble woman that anyone had seen. Nobody realized that Pwyll was not Arawn. Pwyll defeated Hafgan, but did not kill him. The kingdom united and came under Arawn’s authority. Meanwhile, Arawn ruled Pwyll’s land kindly and generously.

Arawn and Pwyll met again, and they switched their forms back to their own. Pwyll had slept chastely with Arawn’s wife during his stay in Annwfn. “I had a friend whose loyalty was steadfast and secure,” said Arawn to his wife. From that time on Pwyll and Arawn began to build up their friendship.

Van Morrison, the Celtic Soul (born August 31, 1945), has his Virgo Sun in close conjunction with Arawn. He has said that he is just a vehicle for the music to come through. Throughout his career he has been seeking spiritual transformation and enlightenment, though according to his own words, it has been about finding out about himself, about trying to find some peace of mind and some light. “What it is as a matter of fact, it’s called growth… The whole point is, dig yourself.”

Van Morrison has never compromised his artistic integrity. An artist either does what he thinks is right, and sticks with it, or goes along with current trends. In interviews he has talked about how most artists at some point “go through an identity crisis about who they really are, and when they finally realise that they’re not what they thought they were but have built up that part of their identity to the point where it’s overtaken everything else and gained momentum…”

Van Morrison says that any kind of art or music is a healing thing. “It comes back to this question: what’s your original face? Know what I mean? Who are you really? There’s so many different kinds of healing but, if you are in alignment with yourself, then that in itself is going to be healing. If you’re trying to be something other, like something superficial, trying to be someone you’re not, then that would take you away from your true centre.”

Two other uncompromising talents, who have their Sun in conjunction with Arawn, are Nick Cave (born Sept. 22, 1957) and PJ Harvey (born Oct. 9, 1969). They have recorded together in 1996, and they also dated each other around that time.

Nick Cave is an Australian musician, singer-songwriter, author and actor, whose songs often deal with love, death, and religion. He has a triple conjunction of the Sun, Mars and Arawn in late Virgo. He has been referred to as rock music’s “Prince of Darkness”. The biggest commercial success of Nick Cave and the Bad Seeds has been Murder Ballads, the album consisting of new and traditional ballads about crimes of passion. One of the songs, “Henry Lee”, is a variant of “Young Hunting”, a traditional folk song, which has its origin in Scotland. The song features a duet between Nick Cave and the English musician PJ Harvey.

Polly Jean Harvey has a quadruple conjunction of the Sun, Jupiter, Bienor and Arawn in the mid-degrees of Libra. The Rolling Stone magazine has said in its review already before the release of the Murder Ballads, that “Harvey sings the blues like Nick Cave sings gospel: with more distortion, sex and murder than you remember.” PJ Harvey’s praised album Let England Shake was released in 2011. It is a dark album about war. On tour Harvey performed dressed like a Valkyrie, in a black dress and wearing a crown of black crow’s feathers.

This Full Moon in Capricorn in conjunction with Arawn, and opposing the Sun-Mars conjunction in Cancer, is encouraging us for a spiritual quest, to search our inner light, or our true face.

New Moon in Cancer — June 24, 2017, 02:31 UT

June 26th, 2017

The New Moon in Cancer on June 24, 2017, was opposite 330836 Orius, a centaur discovered in 2009 at Baldone observatory in Latvia. The orbital period of Orius is almost 100 years, and the orbit crosses those of Uranus and Neptune. The naming took place in 2013. In Greek mythology Orius was one of the centaurs killed by Heracles in the battle at Pholus’s cave. Heracles had asked Pholus to open a jar of wine, which was a shared property of all the centaurs.

What do the examples below have in common? The words disobedience and resistance came first into my mind.

Orius examples:

The Hells Angels Motorcycle Club was started on March 17, 1948, in Fontana, CA. In the chart there is a Sun-Orius conjunction in Pisces. The club is considered an organized crime syndicate, though it fights to present a more benign image to the public. They even organize charity events. In 1966 the organization was registered as a corporation, which aimed to improve motorcycling and traffic safety. Hells Angels played a part in the counterculture movement of the 60’s in San Francisco.

Wikileaks website was launched on Oct. 4, 2006. The Sun-Orius conjunction is in Libra. Wikileaks is a media organization, the goal of which is to bring important news and information, provided by anonymous sources, to the public. The chart data is from Planet Waves site. The founder of Wikileaks, Julian Assange, has been demonized as a criminal or terrorist by various governments.

Julian Assange (born July 3, 1971, in Townsville, Australia) has Orius in Taurus opposite his Moon and in conjunction with Pallas, the asteroid named after the Warrior Queen, and symbolizing political activism.

Greenpeace, the environmental organization, originates from The Don’t Make a Wave Committee, which was formed in Canada in 1969. On May 4, 1972, the group officially changed its name to the “Greenpeace Foundation”. At the time the Sun-Orius conjunction was in Taurus, Jupiter in trine to Orius.

Mikhail Bakunin (born May 30, 1814, in Pryamukhino, Russian Empire), is considered among the most influential figures of anarchism. His Gemini Sun opposes the Uranus-Orius conjunction in Sagittarius.

Dmitri Shostakovich (born Sept. 25, 1906, in St.Petersburg, Russian Federation) is regarded as one of the great composers of the 20th century. He achieved fame during the Soviet period, but had a complex relationship with the government. It is not quite certain to what extent Shostakovich expressed his opposition to the state in his music, but it has been claimed, that many of the composer’s works contained coded anti-government messages. His Sun-Orius conjunction is in Libra.

James Dean, the iconic young rebel (born Feb. 8, 1931, in Marion, Indiana) has a triple conjunction of the Sun, Damocles and Orius in Aquarius.

Jim Morrison (born Dec. 8, 1943, in Melbourne, Florida), the anarchistic front man of the Doors, has a tight Sun-Orius square in his chart.

Garry Kasparov (born April 13, 1963, in Baku, Azerbaijan) is a Russian chess grandmaster. After his retirement from chess in 2005, Kasparov turned to politics and created the United Civil Front, a social movement whose main goal is to “work to preserve electoral democracy in Russia”. He is an outspoken critic of Vladimir Putin. Kasparov has a triple conjunction of the Sun, Orius and Typhon in Aries.

Karen Ann Quinlan (born March 29, 1954, in Scranton, Pennsylvania) was an American coma victim who became an important figure in the history of the right to die controversy in the United States. She was kept alive for years on a respirator, until her parents won a landmark case to have equipment removed. She had a triple conjunction of the Sun, Eris and Orius in Aries.

Shahla Sherkat (born March 30, 1956, in Isfahan, Iran) has also a triple conjunction of the Sun, Eris and Orius in Aries. She is a feminist journalist, one of the pioneers of Women’s rights movement in Iran.

”Tank Man”, an unknown Chinese protestor, stands in front of military tanks on June 5, 1989, the morning after the Chinese military had suppressed the Tiananmen Square protests of 1989 by force. There was a quadruple conjunction of the Sun, Jupiter, Orius and Pholus in Gemini.


This photo was taken on June 5, 1989, by Jeff Widener (The Associated Press).

Summer Solstice – June 21, 2017, 04:24 UT

June 21st, 2017

The Solstices and the Equinoxes govern the seasons. The Sun reaches its most northern position around June 21 each year. This is the day of the Summer Solstice in the Northern hemisphere, the longest day of the year. The Sun enters Cancer.

The first degree of Cancer is one of the Cardinal Points. The other three of those points are the first degrees of Libra, Capricorn and Aries. They are sensitive points in the chart, which tend to connect us to the larger world around us.

Last summer in mid-June, a new little object came in to our consciousness, 2016 HO3. In the 2016 Summer Solstice chart it was occupying the first degree of Libra, in a perfect square to the Sun. It is exactly in the same position again.

2016 HO3 is our constant companion, circulating around us. It is not a real moon, but a quasi-satellite of Earth. It actually orbits the Sun, and at the same time is also looping around our planet. It has been a stable quasi-satellite of Earth for almost a century, and it will continue to be for about three hundred years more. 2016 HO3 spends about half of its time inside the Earth’s orbit, and about half of the time outside of it.

I started to study the orbit of 2016 HO3 in the astrological chart and was astonished. 2016 HO3 resides mostly only in the signs of Virgo, Libra and Scorpio. Sometimes it may visit also Leo and Sagittarius, but it seems it has not been in Sagittarius since the 60’s. In Leo we are not going to see it until in 2026.

First, let’s track the path of 2016 HO3 through the current year. The Capricorn Sun squared 2016 HO3 in the mid degrees of Libra around Jan. 5, 2017. 2016 HO3 was sliding outside the Earth’s orbit. In the beginning of March it started to retrograde in Scorpio. On April 5 it was in opposition to the Sun, still retrograding, again in the mid degrees of Libra, in the same position where it had been at the time of the square. 2016 HO3 visited Virgo, turned direct in May, and now at the Summer Solstice it has just ingressed Libra again. It is proceeding inside the orbit of the Earth. In August it will turn retrograde in the mid degrees of Libra. The conjunction of the Sun and 2016 HO3 happens in September at 24 degrees of Virgo while 2016 HO3 is still in retrograde motion.

This same repeats every year, only the degree numbers gradually change. In 2019 at the Autumn Equinox the conjunction of the Sun and 2016 HO3 happens in the first degree of Libra. In 2021 and 2022 the opposition takes place around the Vernal Equinox while 2016 HO3 is in the beginning of Libra.

Our tiny companion 2016 HO3 seems to have a relationship to the equinoxes and the solstices, and to the Cardinal Points. Its manifestation and abridged appearance in the signs may refer to a distinct message, which is essential to humanity during the next couple of centuries.

Full Moon in Sagittarius — June 9, 2017, 13:10 UT

June 10th, 2017

The Full Moon at 18+ degrees of Sagittarius has brought us a phase of faith and optimism. The Moon is in tight conjunction to Varda, Lady of the Stars, whose face radiates light.

174567 Varda is a trans-Neptunian object named after principal goddess of the elves in J.R.R. Tolkien’s fictional mythology. Varda created the stars and constellations, and also set the vessels of the Sun and Moon upon their courses. In light is her power and her joy.

“Of all the Great Ones who dwell in this world the Elves hold Varda most in reverence and love. Elbereth they name her, and they call upon her name out of the shadows of Middle-earth, and uplift it in song at the rising of the stars,” writes Tolkien.

174567 Varda is highly likely to be a dwarf planet. Dr. Mike Brown has ranked it as the 15th largest object on his dwarf planet list. The orbital period of Varda is around 310 years. It is usually classified as a cubewano, a classical Kuiper belt object. Minor planets in this group do not cross Neptune’s orbit, and they are not controlled by an orbital resonance with Neptune. However, the boundary between the classical objects and the so called scattered disk objects is blurred, and there is no official definition of a cubewano. According to the Deep Ecliptic Survey’s (a project to find Kuiper belt objects) classification Varda has been referred as a detached object.

The sign of Sagittarius is symbolized by the centaur, half man and half horse. In the Sagittarius Full Moon chart the planet of love, Venus, is at 3+ degrees of Taurus, which was the discovery degree of Chiron, the first centaur planet. The Sabian Symbol for the degree is “The pot of gold at the end of the rainbow”. The keynote by Dane Rudhyar is: “Riches that come from linking the celestial and the earthly nature.”

When I was doing my research for this Full Moon in order to find good examples on Varda, one event rose above the others, namely the discovery of Chiron. Chiron was discovered on Nov.1, 1977, by Charles T. Kowal from images taken on Oct. 18, 1977. It was named after the wise centaur Chiron in Greek mythology. In the discovery chart for Nov. 1, 1977, the Sun in Scorpio is in conjunction with Uranus and couple of minor planets, one of which is Varda. Varda’s prominent position in this chart fits so well with Chiron’s tendency to raise awareness. It is difficult to see in the dark. We need light in order to become aware of something.

Yusuf Islam (born July 21, 1948), previously known by his stage name Cat Stevens, has Varda at his ascendant in his birth chart. It is a Full Moon chart (Rodden Rating A). He sings:

“I think I see the light coming to me,
Coming through me giving me a second sight.”

New Moon in Gemini — May 25, 2017, 19:46 UT

May 25th, 2017

The New Moon at 4+ degrees of Gemini is squaring one of the most interesting dwarf planets, the one still without a name, 2007 OR10.

2007 OR10 was discovered almost 10 years ago. Recent studies show that it is big. It is bigger than Haumea, and probably also bigger than Makemake. In size comparison it comes right after Pluto and Eris. Currently it is also the third-farthest known large body in the Solar System, after V774104 (103 AU) and Eris (96.3 AU), located around 87.5 AU from the Sun.

Why has 2007 OR10 not been named yet?

It was discovered in 2007 by Megan Schwamb, Mike Brown and David Rabinowitz. Mike Brown has explained in his blog: “It was just a normal Kuiper belt object found slightly far away. Bigger than most, but otherwise, as far as we knew, unremarkable.” They didn’t even write a press release, because at the time, Mike Brown could not think of anything interesting to write about it.

2007 OR10 turned out to be much more interesting than what originally was thought. The object had originally been nicknamed as “Snow White” for its presumed white color. However, 2007 OR10 was revealed to be one of the reddest objects in the Kuiper belt. It got brighter! It had actually been bright all along, but the discoverers had not realized it, because the observation conditions had been relatively poor. It has a satellite, which was detected in 2016.

According to the International Astronomical Union’s rules, the discoverer of a minor planet has the privilege to suggest a name for the planet in question for a period of ten years following the numbering of the object. This permanent number is given when the orbit of the minor planet is well enough determined so that the position can be reliably predicted into the future. 2007 OR10 received the permanent number in 2009, so Mike Brown has still two years left for his name suggestion.

There has been a petition in the internet for naming 2007 OR10 as R’hllor, also known as the Red God or the Lord of Light, from the HBO series Game of Thrones, based on novels written by George R. R. Martin.

George R. R. Martin has been called “the American Tolkien”. In his birth chart (Rodden Rating AA) 2007 OR10 is right at his 10th house cusp in Aquarius. The 10th house represents one’s career, greatest aspirations, and reputation. Astrologer Howard Sasportas writes in The Twelve Houses: “It is through the signs and planets here that we hope to attain achievement, honour and recognition. Placements in the 10th denote what we would most like to be remembered as having contributed to the world.”

In honor of the 10th birthday of 2007 OR10, I am expecting it to have a proper name by the end of this year. R’hllor could be a notable suggestion.

Full Moon in Scorpio — May 10, 2017, 21:42 UT

May 10th, 2017

The Full Moon at 20+ degrees of Scorpio is conjunct a trans-Neptunian object Ceto on a centaur-like elliptical orbit with orbital period of 1042 years. The Sun in Taurus is in conjunction with a centaur that grazes the orbit of Uranus, Bienor. The name Bienor means “a strong one”. The orbital period of Bienor is about 67 years. What was happening in the world 67 years ago, at the time when Bienor previously was at this same position as it is now?

On May 11, 1950, the Sun made its yearly conjunction to Bienor at 20+ degrees of Taurus. On that day the Kefauver Committee hearings began in the USA. The committee investigated organized crime across the state borders. Hearings were held in 14 major cities and more than 600 witnesses testified. Many of the committee’s hearings were showed live on national television to large audiences. Many Americans had their first glimpse of organized crime’s influence in the U.S. The Kefauver Committee’s work led to expanding civil law to combat organized crime.

On May 12, 1950, the Irish actor Gabriel Byrne (Dr. Paul Weston in the HBO drama In Treatment) was born in Dublin.

On May 13, 1950, the first race in the inaugural FIA Formula One World Championship was held at Silverstone, England.

On May 13, 1950, the American musician Stevie Wonder was born in Saginaw. His career began when he was 11 years old, and is still going strong. His Aries Moon is in conjunction with Ceto. In 1980 Stevie Wonder campaigned to make Dr. Martin Luther King’s birthday a national holiday in the U.S. When Martin Luther King in 1963 delivered his I Have A Dream speech in Washington, the Sun was in conjunction with Venus; Bienor; Haumea; and Uranus in Virgo.

On May 14, 1950, The Huntsville Times ran the headline “Dr. von Braun Says Rocket Flights Possible to Moon”. That might have marked the beginning of those efforts. Wernher von Braun was a German, later American, aerospace engineer, who developed the rockets that launched the U.S.’ first space satellite Explorer I, and the Saturn V rocket, that enabled manned lunar landings. Apollo 11 was the flight that took the first humans on the Moon. When the lunar module Eagle landed on the Moon on July 20, 1969, in the astrological chart the Moon was in a tight conjunction with Bienor. More than 700 million people saw the event in television.

Von Braun continued insisting on the human mission to Mars throughout his life. After another 67 years and a new Bienor cycle, has a man landed on Mars?

In 2008 I was covering Bienor with astrologer Eric Francis at the time when Bienor was at the Aries Point. Eric then phrased Bienor like this: “Bienor may be associated with the strength of mankind expressed through technology…” In the light of my recent research I think he may have hit the nail on the head. Please read the whole article here:

Annular Solar Eclipse of Feb. 7, 2008

You can read about Bienor also at these blog entries:

New Moon in Aries — March 26, 2009, 16:06 UT

New Moon in Gemini — June 8, 2013, 15:56 UT

New Moon in Taurus — April 26, 2017, 12:16 UT

April 26th, 2017

Today was the Taurus New Moon. The Sun and the Moon were in conjunction with two minor planets, a trans-Neptunian object 1992 QB1, and a centaur planet named Pelion.

1992 QB1 was the first body discovered beyond Neptune after the discoveries of Pluto and Charon. Today, 25 years later, the number of TNO discoveries is almost 1800. The orbital period of 1992 QB1 is almost 290 years.

Pelion was discovered in 1998. It is a centaur planet with an orbital period of almost 90 years – more than three times shorter than that of 1992 QB1.

1992 QB1 was a remarkable discovery; it proved the existence of the Kuiper belt, which had only been hypothesized till then. Because of this, 1992 QB1 has gained its meaning as a thresholder. It is the bridge beyond the edge, leading to the unknown. Something similar we can associate to Pelion. Mount Pelion was the homeland of Chiron and other centaurs. It was the place where Jason and the Argonauts started their quest for the Golden Fleece. The current New Moon conjunct these two objects can also lead to a brave new beginning.

In spite of the considerable difference in their orbital period, 1992 QB1 and Pelion have managed to travel together for two years. The Aries New Moon in 2015 was also in conjunction with 1992 QB1 and Pelion. Please read my blog post then: New Moon in Aries — April 18, 2015.

Full Moon in Libra — April 11, 2017, 06:08 UT

April 11th, 2017

Just recently, when asked about the weirdest object in the solar system, Dr. Mike Brown tweeted: “Yay Haumea. Seriously weird. With an entire weird family, to boot.”

The current Uranus-Eris conjunction in Aries is opposed by Haumea, one of the biggest members of the Kuiper belt. In Libra near Haumea is Jupiter, the magnifier. At the time of the Libra Full Moon, the Sun and the Moon aligned with this powerful opposition. Pluto in Capricorn, halfway, completed the aspect pattern as a t-cross.

What are the properties that make Haumea so strange? Haumea is the fastest rotating body and also the most bizarrely shaped body of its size class. The rotation period is only about four hours. The shape of Haumea is therefore elongated and resembles an American football. Haumea is almost entirely composed of rock. It has only a thin icy outer shell. It is unusual, as most things out in the Kuiper belt are about equal portions of rock and of ice. In the distant past another object probably slammed into Haumea, and this giant impact caused all of its odd properties.

Haumea has two moons, Hi’iaka and Namaka. It also has a family of its own that includes besides its moons, also several quite large trans-Neptunian objects with similar physical and orbital characteristics than Haumea. None of these have been given a name so far. They are thought to have formed as a consequence of the impact from the mantle of Haumea.

Haumea is the cosmic midwife, as Eric Francis aptly has stated. It is named after the Hawaiian goddess of fertility and childbirth, who has power to change her form, and who has experienced several rebirths. The name may come from the word “hanaumea”, meaning sacred birth. The two moons are named after her daughters. Haumea can be identified with Papa, the goddess of the earth. She also lived as a mortal woman, and she became a growing breadfruit tree. Haumea’s many children sprang from different parts of her body. Her children have also been said to be born from her brain.

It is easy to understand, that the Hawaiian myth describes how the hot red lava burst out from surprising spots of the ground and starts to squirm towards the sea, forming new land and reshaping the landscape, and finally turning into new fertile soil.

It is not easy to separate the influence of the mysterious Haumea, when it is together with powerful planets in an aspect formation, like it is at present. In addition, we associate Pluto with renewal and rebirth. Most of the 1950’s Pluto and Haumea were in conjunction in Leo. Both planets move very slowly, so almost everyone born in the 50’s has the conjunction in their chart, although tightest it was in the middle of the decade. We can talk about a whole Pluto-Haumea generation. Some truly gifted artists were born with a triple conjunction of the Sun, Pluto and Haumea in their natal chart.

Patrick Swayze (born Aug. 18, 1952) was an American actor, dancer, and singer-songwriter. His breakthrough role was in the film Dirty Dancing as the sexy dance instructor. He did many of his own stunts. His triple conjunction of the Sun, Pluto and Haumea in Leo is at his South node of the Moon. Jupiter in Taurus is squaring the triple conjunction.

James Cameron (born August 16, 1954) is a Canadian filmmaker, director, producer, screenwriter, inventor, and deep-sea explorer. In the time between making Titanic and Avatar, he spent several years creating documentary films. In 2012 Cameron reached the bottom of the Mariana Trench, the deepest part of the world’s oceans, in the Deep sea Challenger submersible. He is the first person to do this solo. Cameron’s Uranus in Cancer is in a loose conjunction with Jupiter. Uranus is semisextile to his triple conjunction of the Sun, Pluto and Haumea.

Stephen Fry (born Aug. 24, 1957) is an English comedian, writer, and activist. Many of us remember him in the role of Jeeves. Besides the acting career, he has been reading Harry Potter novels for the audiobook recordings, and performed on Kate Bush’s 50 Words for Snow album. Stephen Fry’s birth data has the Rodden Rating of B (the data is from biography), but if the time is correct, then his triple conjunction of the Sun, Pluto and Haumea falls right at his ascendant. Uranus is trine to Eris, and Jupiter is opposite Eris.

Tim Burton (born Aug. 25, 1958) is an American film director, producer, writer and animator. He is known for his dark and eccentric fantasy films. His Capricorn Moon is in quincunx aspect to the triple conjunction of the Sun, Pluto and Haumea. His Gemini ascendant squares the triple conjunction.

Stevie Ray Vaughan’s (born Oct. 3, 1954) Libra Sun is not in conjunction with Pluto and Haumea, but he was born only a couple of days after the exact Pluto-Haumea conjunction in 1954. The Sun is opposite Eris. The Jupiter-Uranus conjunction in Cancer is semisextile to Pluto and Haumea. Stevie Ray Vaughan was an American musician, singer, songwriter, and record producer. He is one of the greatest guitarists of all times.

Another talented guitarist, with a triple conjunction of the Sun, Pluto and Haumea, the British Mark Knopfler (born Aug. 12, 1949), has said: “…if there is a definition of freedom, it would be when you have control over your reality to transform it, to change it, rather than having it imposed upon you. You can’t really ask for more than that.” His words can well be used in delineating the meaning of the conjunction of Pluto and Haumea in Leo.

New Moon in Aries — March 28, 2017, 2:57 UT

March 29th, 2017

The first New Moon of the year occurred on March 28 at 7+ degrees of Aries. The sign of Aries has been the scene of many interesting astrological developments lately, including the Uranus-Eris conjunction on March 17 at 22+ degrees of Aries. Among the most interesting events is the sign ingress of 120347 Salacia.

On March 1, Salacia left Neptune’s world and entered Aries. Salacia at the Aries Point is a rare event, because Salacia’s orbital period around the Sun lasts about 270 years, a bit longer than that of Pluto. Salacia spent over 23 years in Pisces, and it will spend the next 25 years or so in Aries.

120347 Salacia is one of the largest trans-Neptunian objects. Its dark surface is unusual among the objects in its size range, and that is why it was at first considered much smaller than what it actually is. Salacia is almost certainly a dwarf planet, and on Mike Brown’s dwarf planet list it is ranked as the tenth largest object. The misunderstanding of the size presumably has had an effect on the diminutive attention payed on Salacia in astrology.

120347 Salacia is named after the Roman goddess of salt water and the consort of Neptune. According to the myth, Neptune wanted to marry the beautiful nymph Salacia. She wanted to preserve her virginity – perhaps also her independence – so she fled as far as she could and hid from him in the Atlantic Ocean. Neptune sent a dolphin to look for her and persuade her to come back and marry him. Salacia agreed, and so she became the goddess of the sea. She was depicted with dolphins and seals, and other sea creatures.

Salacia was a bit overlooked goddess in mythology, too. She was diminished to represent an aspect of Neptune, the violent and gushing waters. Her Greek equivalent was Amphitrite, the wife of Poseidon. Only in one occasion – but in a significant one – she appears as a real goddess, namely at the birth of the Sun god Apollo, one of the most important deities in Greek and Roman mythology.

The Vernal Equinox was on March 20, when the new astrological year began. The Sun entered Aries and conjoined 120347 Salacia, already there occupying the first degree of the sign. Salacia’s sign ingress had taken place on March 1. More than suitably the Sabian Symbol of the Aries 1 by Dr. Marc Edmund Jones is “A woman rises out of water, a seal rises and embraces her.” Do you recognize Salacia?

Since Salacia was seen as one aspect of Neptune, I think she was quite comfortable in the water sign of Pisces, which is ruled by Neptune. Perhaps Salacia in Aries will reflect the part of the myth, in which she showed her independence and bravely fled to an unfamiliar territory.

In the New Moon chart the retrograding Venus and asteroid Pallas are in conjunction with Salacia, and the Sun and the Moon are also with a wider orb. Venus has already once passed over Salacia, still in Pisces at the time. Venus will be retrograding over the Aries Point and Salacia again on April 1. Venus retrograde ends on April 15, and the third conjunction of Venus and Salacia happens on May 1.

The current astrology highlights Salacia. Let’s pay attention and take notes!

Full Moon in Virgo — March 12, 2017, 14:54 UT

March 15th, 2017

The Full Moon last Sunday was at 22+ degrees of Virgo. The Sun in the opposing sign was in conjunction with the trans-Neptunian object Manwë at 23+ degrees of Pisces.

Every birth chart is unique, as are also we individuals. The planets in the chart in specific combinations and placements can manifest themselves in many different ways in the lives of different people. The genes we inherit from our parents; our upbringing; the circumstances of our lives; and the choices we make; they all shape us the persons who we are.

Sometimes when I look at someone’s chart, a new object reveals its meaning in that particular chart very clearly. This was the case when I saw the Sun-Manwë conjunction in Aleister Crowley’s birth chart. Manwë seems to have been the underlying and unconscious influence motivating him in almost everything he did.

Aleister Crowley (1875 – 1947) was an English occultist, magician, poet, painter, writer, and mountaineer. He is a controversial figure, whose name is familiar to those who have interest in Tarot. He has had influence in esoteric traditions and in popular culture. He founded the religion of Thelema, and considered himself as a prophet. He was accused of being a satanist. He saw himself as a solar myth.

In 1903 Aleister Crowley married Rose Edith Kelly, and next year on their honeymoon they arrived in Cairo, Egypt. The events in Cairo turned out to be pivotal for Crowley. Rose told Crowley that the Egyptian god Horus wanted to communicate with him. Horus was a sky god and a solar deity, usually depicted as a man with a falcon head. Rose channeled the messages, which Crowley wrote down, and the writings became “The Book of the Law”, which became the cornerstone of Crowley’s religion.

Some documents suggest that during the Second World War Crowley was working as a secret agent of British Intelligence, and perhaps remained a spy throughout his life.

385446 Manwë is a binary trans-Neptunian object discovered in 2003 and named in 2014. The satellite is named Thorondor. The names come from J.R.R. Tolkien’s fictional mythology.

In Tolkien’s mythology Manwë was a kind and wise King of the Valar and a Jupiter-like deity. He was the lord of air, wind and clouds. Birds, especially eagles, were his servants. They flew back and forth and brought to his knowledge everything that was going on in the world. Manwë loved poetry and music with words. He dressed in blue robe and carried a sapphire scepter. He lived on the highest mountain of the world, Mount Taniquetil.

Thorondor was the lord of eagles, the “mightiest of all birds that have ever been”, in Tolkien’s writing.

It is almost impossible to talk about Manwë without mentioning Varda, the queen of the stars. Manwë and Varda complemented each other. If Varda is beside Manwë, he “sees further than all other eyes, through mist, and through darkness, and over the leagues of the sea. And if Manwë is with her, Varda hears more clearly than all other ears the sound of voices that cry from east to west, from the hills and the valleys,” wrote Tolkien. There is also a trans-Neptunian object 174567 Varda, which was discovered in 2003 and named in 2014, just as 385446 Manwë was.

Aleister Crowley’s birth data has the Rodden Rating of C (meaning “caution”). In this chart 174567 Varda is at Crowley’s ascendant. His Sun-Manwë conjunction forms a quintile aspect to Varda. The quintile aspect is said to be an aspect of creativity. Astrologer Sue Tompkins has noted: “It describes the kind of art form we are drawn to (using the word ‘art’ in the widest sense) and with which we may become skilled. It is often an area we become obsessed and fixated about and we impose that fixation upon the world at large.”

How did Aleister Crowley implement his Manwë archetype? He was the chief of his religious movement Thelema, he established the foundation of his work together with his wife, as a mountaineer he reached high mountains, he wrote poetry, and he wore – at least occasionally — a ceremonial robe. If you think of him as a prophet, or as a secret agent as well, you can almost hear the wings of the mighty eagles, when they fly gathering information on higher plane or in the distant corners of the empire.

The Sun conjoined 385446 Manwë on Monday, and today it makes contact with Chiron. The astrological year is ending with a window of opportunity for special wisdom and healing.

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