New Moon in Aquarius — January 28, 2017, 00:07 UT

January 28th, 2017

The New Moon in Aquarius is in conjunction with 52872 Okyrhoe, a centaur planet discovered in 1998. It is named after the daughter of Chiron and Chariklo in Greek mythology. The name means “swift running” or “fast flowing”.

Okyrhoe was a nymph and a prophetess, who was changed into a mare by the gods as punishment for revealing their secrets to humankind. Her ability to speak was thus taken.

Perhaps slight resemblance with the myth can be sensed in the current challenging situation of the press in the USA, when Trump’s government tries to silence journalists.

Mercury has just left the shadow phase after its retrogradation. Mercury rules all types of communication and mental activities. In the New Moon chart it is in Capricorn in conjunction with Pluto and 15810 Arawn. 15810 Arawn is a recently named trans-Neptunian object which was discovered in 1994. According to the naming rules of the International Astronomical Union, all plutinos are given mythological names associated with the underworld. The name Arawn comes from the Welsh mythology.

In Welsh mythology, Arawn was the king of the otherworld realm of Annwfn. Arawn and Annwfn appear in the Mabinogion, a collection of 11 medieval Welsh folk tales. Annwfn was like a paradise. It was a world of eternal youth where disease was absent and food was ever-abundant.

Research on the astrological meaning for Arawn has begun. In the meanwhile I can offer two examples of singer-songwriters who heavily draw on the Celtic tradition.

Van Morrison (born August 31, 1945), who even has written a song called “Tir Na Nog”, has his Sun in close conjunction with Arawn. Tir Na Nog is the Otherworld in Irish mythology. It is a heavenly place, just like Annwfn. The Sun represents the main expression of the individual. Astrologer Bernadette Brady has written, that “it reveals the myth or story that the individual follows through life.” The conjunction is an aspect which combines the energies of the two planets in question.

A Canadian musician Loreena McKennitt (born Feb. 17, 1957) performs Celtic music. Her Jupiter is in conjunction with Arawn. Jupiter emphasizes and strengthens everything it touches.

In mythology, both Mercury and Arawn were psychopomps. They were able to travel between the worlds. The psychopomp is a guide who escorts newly deceased souls from Earth to the afterlife. In Jungian psychology, the psychopomp is a mediator between the unconscious and conscious realms. Pay attention to your present dreams, as they may reveal something important to you.

Full Moon in Cancer — January 12, 2017, 11:34 UT

January 12th, 2017

The Full Moon is always an opposition of the Sun and the Moon. Today the Sun-Moon opposition on the Cancer-Capricorn axis was crossing another opposition, which was formed by Jupiter in Libra and Uranus-Eris conjunction in Aries. The square pattern, which was thus formed, is called a grand cross.

A grand cross has sometimes been called the “make-or-break pattern”. The interpretation of a grand cross depends on the quality of the signs in question, and also on the planets involved. A good amount of pressure can be felt, but since today’s cross was in the cardinal signs, and the Sun and the Moon — the givers of life – were participating, the meaning of this Full Moon is manifesting more on the making. The luminaries are rapidly moving planets, so this grand cross is soon unraveling. If the participants were slow-moving outer planets, there would be more dramatic feeling present.

Uranus and Eris are forming a conjunction in 2016 and 2017. The previous time that they were in a conjunction with each other, was in 1927 and 1928. In mythology Eris was the rejected Greek goddess of strife and discord. Themes of exclusion and alienation can also be associated with the astrological Eris. Also in the following example a gut feeling of being excluded can be sensed.

Bossa nova is a music genre which came popular in the 1950s and 1960s. Bossa nova means literally “new trend”. In 1964 one of the best-selling jazz albums of all time, Getz/Gilberto, was released. Brazilian guitarist João Gilberto’s then wife, Astrud Gilberto sang a track called ”The Girl from Ipanema” on the album, which made her an international star. American saxophonist Stan Getz (born Feb. 2, 1927) and the composer of the song, Antônio Carlos Jobim (born Jan. 25, 1927), are both having the Uranus/Eris conjunction in their charts, Eris at the Aries Point. Unfortunately the clock times are unknown, but there was a New Moon in Aquarius (the sign ruled by Uranus) on the same day when Stan Getz was born. Also Antonio Carlos Jobim’s Sun is in Aquarius. Astrud Gilberto (born March 29, 1940) has a Sun-Eris conjunction in Aries. Her Jupiter is also in the same sign.

The original title of the song was “Menina que Passa” (“The Girl Who Passes By”). The lyrics tell a story about a man who is attracted to a beautiful girl, who walks daily to the beach and passes the man, but the girl does not see the man:

“But each day when she walks to the sea,
She looks straight ahead – not at he…
Tall and tanned and young and lovely,
The girl from Ipanema goes walking
And when she passes, he smiles, but she doesn’t see…
She just doesn’t see…”
(English lyrics by Norman Gimbel)

New Moon in Capricorn — December 29, 2016, 06:53 UT

December 30th, 2016

The last New Moon of the year was in Capricorn in conjunction with Mercury retrograde, and two centaur planets, Amycus and Chariklo. 55576 Amycus shared the same degree with the Sun and the Moon.

55576 Amycus was discovered in April 2002 and named for Amycus, a male centaur in Greek mythology. Its orbital period is relatively long compared to the other centaurs, over 125 years. It came to perihelion (the point of least distance to the Sun) in February 2003.

In mythology the centaurs are best known for the battle which took place during the wedding of the king of the Lapith people, Pirithous, and Hippodameia. This battle is known as the Centauromachy, and Amycus has quite an important role in it. The wild centaurs were invited to the wedding, but they became drunk and lost their control. One of the centaurs, Eurytus, tried to rape the bride. Pirithous’s friend then killed Eurytys. Amycus was responsible for the first death of one of the Lapiths, as he in anger smashed the head of innocent Lapith Celadon. Amycus was then killed and sent to the underworld Tartarus. The Lapiths defeated the centaurs, which were forced to flee from Thessaly.

Centaurs are half-human, half-horse creatures, symbolizing the dual nature of man. Besides the civilized, human side of man, there is the wild, animal nature. We all have a shadow, the rejected and irrational part of the psyche, which we tend to project into other people with feelings of anger and fear. Centaurs represent this shadow, but they also offer their healing power to us.

The following persons were born with their Sun conjunct 55576 Amycus:

February 15, 1909 — Miep Gies, one of the Dutch citizens who hid Anne Frank and her family from the Nazis during World War II.

February 23, 1915 — Paul Tibbets, the pilot who flew the Enola Gay when it dropped the atomic bomb on the Japanese city of Hiroshima.

March 25, 1934 — Gloria Steinem, American feminist

April 1, 1939 – James “Spider” Martin, an American photographer known for his work documenting the American Civil Rights Movement in 1965, specifically Bloody Sunday and other incidents from the Selma to Montgomery marches. Martin Luther King Jr. has said, “Spider, we could have marched, we could have protested forever, but if it weren’t for guys like you, it would have been for nothing. The whole world saw your pictures. That’s why the Voting Rights Act was passed.”

April 23, 1954 — Michael Moore, American filmmaker and political activist

June 14, 1979 — Alton Sterling, American man fatally shot by a Baton Rouge, Louisiana, police officer (d. 2016)

June 21, 1982 — Prince William, Duke of Cambridge

The following events have occurred while the Sun was in conjunction with Amycus:

March 23, 1933 – The Reichstag passes the Enabling Act, making Adolf Hitler dictator of Germany.

May 16, 1966 – The Communist Party of China issues the ‘May 16 Notice’, marking the beginning of the Cultural Revolution. In New York City, Dr. Martin Luther King Jr. makes his first public speech on the Vietnam War.

June 4, 1976 — English punk rock group The Sex Pistols perform the first of two concerts to an audience of 35-40 people at Manchester’s Lesser Free Trade Hall. It is considered one of the most influential gigs of all time. Audience members go on to form the groups Joy Division, New Order, The Smiths, Simply Red, The Fall, Buzzcocks, and Magazine, and the record label Factory Records.

August 21, 1996 — Former president of South Africa, F. W. de Klerk, makes an official apology for crimes committed under Apartheid to the Truth and Reconciliation Commission in Cape Town.

August 23, 1996 — Osama bin Laden writes “The Declaration of Jihad on the Americans Occupying the Country of the Two Sacred Places,” a call for the removal of American military forces from Saudi Arabia.

October 20, 2004 – The Ubuntu operating system is first released. It is based on free software and named after the Southern African philosophy of ubuntu (literally, ‘human-ness’), which can be loosely translated as “humanity to others” or “I am what I am because of who we all are”.

December 17, 2014 — U.S. President Barack Obama announces the resumption of normal relations between the U.S. and Cuba.

In the light of the examples above, I think that the Bantu concept of ubuntu can be used in delineating the meaning of Amycus. Ubuntu asserts that society gives human beings their humanity, and that a person is a person through other people. Archbishop Desmond Tutu has explained it like this:

“Ubuntu speaks particularly about the fact that you can’t exist as a human being in isolation. It speaks about our interconnectedness. You can’t be human all by yourself, and when you have this quality – Ubuntu – you are known for your generosity.

”We think of ourselves far too frequently as just individuals, separated from one another, whereas you are connected and what you do affects the whole World. When you do well, it spreads out; it is for the whole of humanity.”

Tutu has also said: “You know when ’ubuntu’ is there, and it is obvious when it is absent. It has to do with what it means to be truly human, to know that you are bound up with others in the bundle of life.”

Full Moon in Gemini — December 14, 2016, 00:05 UT

December 15th, 2016

The Full Moon in Gemini was in conjunction with 19521 Chaos, a trans-Neptunian object with orbital period of approximately 310 years. It is a so-called cubewano and possibly a dwarf planet. It is not in resonance with Neptune and its orbit never crosses the orbit of Neptune.

Chaos was discovered in 1998 and named after the original state of existence in Greek mythology. Nowadays we usually understand chaos as a state of confusion or disorder, but in Greco-Roman tradition Chaos was a divine primordial condition, a dark and formless void. It was the origin of the gods, and all things.

chaos
Image: Sirja Melto

The Apollo 13 lunar landing mission is a good example of Chaos at work, showing its dual nature. The space craft was launched on April 11, 1970, at 19:13 UT from the Kennedy Space Center, Florida. The Sun was in conjunction with Chaos.

Two days after the launch of Apollo 13, an oxygen tank exploded causing a chaotic situation in the space craft. The lunar landing was aborted, and the crew had to start fighting for their lives. The power in the vehicle was limited, the internal temperature dropped, and the carbon dioxide removal system needed to be repaired using duct tape and other stuff available in the craft.

The creative solutions of the astronauts and the ground crew in Houston made the safe return to Earth possible for Apollo 13 crew.

New Moon in Sagittarius — November 29, 2016, 12:18 UT

November 29th, 2016

The New Moon at 7+ degrees Sagittarius takes place on Nov. 29 in exact square to the lunar nodes, the invisible points in the sky, which form an axis in the astrological chart. “The nodes tell us about what we get to do here on the Earth, and they help us do it,” has Eric Francis expressed their meaning. The south node is associated with the past and the north node with the future. The point square to the nodes in halfway between them is a balancing point, and the Sun and the Moon are there now.

Jupiter is the ruling planet of Sagittarius. Jupiter at the mid-degrees of Libra squared Pluto in Capricorn less than a week ago, on Nov. 24. This was the first square in the series of three. The other two will occur next year. The Uranus-Eris conjunction is retrograding in Aries, opposite Jupiter. The opposition is tightening.

The day after the Jupiter-Pluto square, on Nov. 25, the iconic revolutionary leader and former long-term prime minister and president of Cuba, Fidel Castro died. Castro represents the generation which was born during the previous Uranus-Eris conjunction in the 1920s.

The time for Fidel Castro’s birth is controversial, but the data I am using is August 13, 1926, 2:00 AM, Biran, Cuba (classified by the Astro-Databank as Dirty Data). Castro’s Uranus is in the late degrees of Pisces, but Eris is right at the Aries Point. There could not be more fitting place than this for the goddess of strife and discord in the chart of a revolutionary, who became the leader of his country. According to astrologer Robert Hand, the Aries Point “indicates one’s relationships with the larger world around one and is associated with fame and greater social significance.”

Eris is a polarizing force, and Fidel Castro was a controversial person. Many Cubans think about him as a beloved father figure, while others consider him as a dictator. Exclusion is one of the themes that can be associated with Eris, so the long-lasted economic and diplomatic isolation of Cuba can be linked with her symbolism.

Castro’s ascendant is in conjunction with asteroid Bacchus in the late degrees of Gemini. The ascendant signifies the impression we make on others. In Greco-Roman mythology the Roman Bacchus is equivalent to the Greek Dionysus, the god of winemaking and wine, of ritual madness and fertility. Bacchus traveled around and was followed by singing and dancing women. Castro was a womanizer who had many mistresses and several illegitimate children.

Bacchus was also known as Liber Pater, “the liberator”. A quote from Wikipedia: “In Roman culture, Liber, Bacchus and Dionysus became virtually interchangeable equivalents. Bacchus was euhemerised as a wandering hero, conqueror and founder of cities.” In my opinion, the image below, taken in 1957 when Castro was celebrating his victory in Havana, expresses perfectly Castro’s Bacchus at his ascendant.

h-01822378

Fidel Castro survived more than 600 assassination attempts. Perhaps centaur planet 346889 Rhiphonos has something to do with his extraordinary survival ability. In his natal chart, Castro’s Saturn is in conjunction to his Rhiphonos, to the degree. His Sun is in exact square to the conjunction. In mythology, Dionysus’s mother was a mortal woman, and his father was Zeus. When Dionysus was an infant, Zeus set twelve centaurs to guard him against Hera’s anger. These centaurs drew the chariot of baby Dionysus. One of the Dionysian Centaurs was Rhiphonos.

Fidel Castro’s last public appearance was on April 19, 2016. He delivered a farewell speech. “Soon I will be 90 years old,” he said. “Soon I will be like all the rest. Everybody’s turn comes.” We don’t know if anything specific concerning his health had occurred then, because his health was a national security matter and kept secret. From the astrological point of view something notable had happened recently.

On March 9, 2016 there was a Total Solar Eclipse at 18+ degrees of Pisces in conjunction with Chiron. The eclipse fell on Fidel Castro’s Midheaven in Pisces. Midheaven, or the cusp of the tenth house represents not only our career, but in larger sense also our life purpose.

The eclipse was of Saros series 18 South. Each eclipse is a member of a particular eclipse series, and each series has a distinct characteristics. Astrologer Bernadette Brady has delineated the Saros series 18 South like this: “This family of eclipses is concerned with endings or separations. Thus when it affects a chart, individuals will find themselves dealing with a parting. This parting can be anything from a friend traveling overseas and the saying of goodbyes to the ending of a relationship with a loved one, which could bring much anguish or grief. However, the pain of the separation is lessened by encountering new situations which lead to very positive outcomes.”

At the time Fidel Castro died (Nov. 25, 2016), he was experiencing a transit of Pluto. The transiting Pluto at 15+ degrees of Capricorn was tightly opposing his natal first house Pluto in Cancer. Castro’s Pluto is conjunct his north lunar node. In fact the current transiting Jupiter-Pluto square was affecting not just his natal Pluto (power), but also his nodal axis (the past and the future). A powerful transformation was inevitable.

Full Moon in Taurus — November 14, 2016, 13:52 UT

November 14th, 2016

The Full Moon in Taurus today is the brightest supermoon in nearly 70 years. The Moon is closer to Earth than it has been since January 1948. In the astrological chart, the Moon was in conjunction with one of the most distant objects in our solar system, Sedna.

Sedna was discovered on 14 November 2003, exactly thirteen years ago. It is a trans-Neptunian object which astrologically has a strong association with the climate change and other environmental issues. It reminds us that we should not be exploiting the resources of Earth.

Sedna has an exceptionally long and elongated orbit. The orbital period is around 11,400 years. At the moment it is about three times as far as Neptune, approaching the Sun, and coming to its perihelion in 2076. The last time Sedna was this close to the Sun, Earth was just coming out of the last ice age. The next time Sedna comes back, the world will be a completely different place again.

Sedna is named in honor of the Inuit goddess of sea and marine animals. She is thought to live at the bottom of the frigid Arctic Ocean. There are several variants of the myth, but all of them agree that Sedna was a beautiful young girl, who became the goddess of the icy waters. According to Grey Eagle, a Native American ceremonial storyteller, “…all the broken taboos and sins against the nature of the people fall through the water, to collect on Sedna’s body. When the accumulation is too great, Sedna sobs in pain.” The sea creatures gather by her door to comfort her and in the above world there is hunger and sickness. Then a shaman must visit her in the deep waters and clean her body and comb her hair. When Sedna is happy again, she releases her mammals and allows the humans to eat from the bounty of the sea.

Sedna wants to be known. She gives us subtle warnings, and if we don’t pay attention to her, we may have to deal with her strength.

Another distant object named after Inuit deities, Sila-Nunam, is squaring the luminaries from Leo. Sila-Nunam is a binary system, a double cubewano, consisting of two bodies tightly bound and with nearly equal sizes. The orbital period is almost 300 years.

Classical trans-Neptunian objects are given mythological names associated with creation. Sila or Silla is one of the oldest Inuit deities, even older than Sedna. Sila is the Inuit god of the sky, weather, and life force. The Inuit believed that Silla was the primary component of everything that exists. He had control over everything in one’s life. Nunam is the Earth goddess, Sila’s wife. Nunam created the land animals and, in some traditions, the Inuit people. Sila breathed life into the Inuit.

In 1997, the same year when Sila-Nunam was discovered, an international treaty known as the Kyoto Protocol was adopted. The agreement set targets for industrialized countries to cut their greenhouse gas emissions.

Year 2016 has been the hottest year on record. This has been especially pronounced in the Arctic, affecting the melting of the ice sheet and sea ice, and the thickness of the snow cover. The survival of the polar bear is seriously threatened. The warming is endangering the Svalbard seed vault, which was thought to be safely surrounded by arctic permafrost. Global biodiversity is declining at an alarming rate. Almost two-thirds of the vertebrate species have disappeared in about 50 years because of human actions.

The Paris agreement on climate change went into effect on 4 November 2016, marking the first time that governments have agreed legally binding limits to global temperature rises. Now the world is worried about USA’s withdrawal from the Paris agreement. Is Donald Trump’s presidency going to be a disaster for our planet?

Full Moon in Aries — October 16, 2016, 04:23 UT

October 16th, 2016

This is the Full Moon when unexpected events can be expected. The Moon at 23+ degrees of Aries fell tightly on the Uranus-Eris conjunction. In the opposing sign, Libra, the Sun was in exact conjunction with Haumea, one of the dwarf planets.

Haumea and Eris are forming a long ongoing opposition between the years 2014 and 2018. Because of the phenomenon called retrogradation, these planets make the total of nine exact oppositions to another during these years. The middlemost of these aspects happened on Oct. 13th.

Eris is the most massive and second-largest dwarf planet known in the Solar System. It is a scattered-disk object. It was discovered in 2005 and first known as Xena (after the Warrior Princess in a television series), which was a nickname given by the discovery team. Eris caused Pluto’s astronomical demotion. Eris was officially named in 2006 after the Greek goddess of strife and discord.

The previous time that Uranus and Eris were forming a conjunction, was in 1927 and 1928. The conjunction took place at the Aries Point. Because both planets are moving slowly, the conjunction was valid longer than just two years. The Aries Point is a point which connects the individual with the larger world and is associated with fame. I have two examples of people born with that conjunction.

The Queen of Suspense, Mary Higgins Cark, was born on Christmas Eve 1927. Her Sun is at 1+ degrees of Capricorn, tightly squaring the Uranus-Eris conjunction at the Aries Point. Also Jupiter in late Pisces was conjunct Uranus and Eris. The time for Higgins Clark’s birth is not known, but there was a New Moon and a Partial Solar Eclipse at 1+ degrees of Capricorn on that same day. So her Moon can be included in the square configuration.

The Solar Eclipse on Dec. 24, 1927, belongs to the Saros Series 1 South. Bernadette Brady has delineated this Series as following: “This family of eclipses is concerned with ideas and their enthusiastic expression. If this eclipse affects your chart, you will be flooded with ideas or options. There may seem to be an element of haste, but if you can go with the new ideas, they will have positive outcomes.”

Mary Higgins Clark began writing at an early age. Despite of her advanced age, she continues writing. She has over 50 novels published, and all of her suspense novels have been best-sellers. She also has won many awards for her writing. In her birth chart Mercury (writing) is squaring Jupiter (expansion). Her Sun and Mercury are in a flowing trine to her Neptune in the last degree of Leo (inspiration, imagination), and Neptune is also aspecting the Uranus-Eris conjunction at the Aries Point.

Higgins Clark is said to have the ability to slowly draw out the tension while making the reader think everyone is guilty. Her novels feature strong, independent young women who find themselves in the midst of a problem that they must solve with their own courage and intelligence (Eris). Many of the books deal with crimes involving children or with telepathy. In my bookshelf I have several of her novels, which I have not finished reading – they are just too creepy for me.

Yayoi Kusama (born March 22, 1929, time unknown) is a Japanese artist and writer. Her exact Sun-Eris conjunction at the Aries Point, and the opposition of Mars and Saturn from Cancer to Capricorn, form a t-square. Uranus is in conjunction with Eris.

There have been tragic twists in Yayoi Kusama’s life, and although in her birth chart there are many other clues from which you are able to read the story, Eris plays an important role in her life and art.

Kusama started creating art at an early age. She became interested in the European and American avant-garde, and in 1957 she moved to the United States. The polka dots have become a trademark of her work. She covers surfaces with the polka dots, or “infinity nets,” as she calls them, taken directly from her hallucinations and obsessions. While living in the US, Kusama was hospitalized regularly from overwork (Eris as cast out from society). She returned to Japan in ill health, and in 1977 checked herself into a hospital for the mentally ill in Tokyo. She has been living at the hospital since, by her own choice. She has continued her work. She is one of the leading artists in the world today, and she has received numerous awards.

In Inviting Eris To The Party, Amy Shapiro writes: “Eris and the Sun are rather opposite in nature; the Sun gives light and life, while Eris is associated with darkness and death. The Sun is the core egoic self, striving to be recognized as self-determining. Eris is determined to supersede the ego…” Specifically about the Sun-Eris conjunction she says: “You are unique and special and must express who you are at heart in a way that empowers you to influence those who come within your orbit. No one else can tell you how to live your life; being free to be yourself is essential to you…”

The Saturn-Eris square is described by Shapiro like this: “Harsh circumstances may motivate you to excel despite obstacles. You are prepared to earn your freedom by working hard and long to prove your worth and rise to the top…”

Yayoi Kusama has been described as a conceptual artist, a minimalist, a surrealist, a pop artist and a feminist artist. Kusama’s art is not a bit gloomy, although she has fought against the darkness of her mind during her whole life. Its central themes are infinity, repetition and the desire to become one with the world. The viewer can become part of her imaginary world.

She has said: “A polka dot has the form of the sun, which is a symbol of the energy of the whole world and our living life, and also the form of the moon, which is calm. Round, soft, colorful, senseless and unknowing. Polka dots become movement… Polka dots are a way to infinity.”

136108 Haumea is a dwarf planet discovered in 2004 by Mike Brown and his team. In 2005 they discovered that Haumea has two moons, which were later named as Hi’iaka and Namaka. The names come from the Hawaiian mythology, where Haumea is the goddess of childbirth and fertility, and Hi’iaka and Namaka are two of her children. Haumea is the second Kuiper belt object after Pluto known to have more than one moon.

In mythology Haumea’s many children sprang from different parts of her body. She can take many different forms and has experienced many different rebirths. Hi’iaka was born from the mouth of Haumea. She danced the first Hula on the shores of Puna and is the patron goddess of the island of Hawaii and of hula dancers. Namaka is a water spirit, who was born from the body of Haumea. When Pele sends her burning lava into the sea, Namaka cools the lava to become new land.

136108 Haumea is one of the strangest objects in the Solar System. It is one of the largest trans-Neptunian objects discovered. In the very distant past another object probably slammed into Haumea at high speed, and this giant impact led to all of its odd properties. It 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 stretched out and resembles an American football. The rotation time is near the point where body of this size starts to break down.

Haumea is followed in its orbit around the Sun by a swarm of icy bodies that were originally ejected from the surface of Haumea during the giant impact. They are called the Haumea family. Perhaps in the future these bodies will be named after other mythical children of Haumea.

Before the official naming the discoverers of Haumea nicknamed it “Santa”, because they had discovered it on December 28, 2004, just after Christmas.

The Sabian Symbol for the discovery degree for 12+ Libra is beautiful and aptly speaks about children: “Children blowing soap bubbles.” Marc Edmund Jones writes: “This is a symbol of man’s reassurance through the presence of the beautiful and the good in every least promising form of human relationship. People are disposed kindly toward their fellows, but there is no growth in the mere rhythm of everyday routine, and human individuality knows it must be up and at the business of selfhood whether constructively or otherwise. Implicit in the symbolism is the challenge to rise above childish things while yet clinging to childlike ways. The keyword is enchantment. When positive, the degree is a consistent simplicity of character which enables anyone to maintain his touch with a transcendental magic of being, and when negative, a constant and idle daydreaming.”

Two original artists born with their Sun conjunct Haumea are the awarded singer Amy Winehouse and the high-wire artist Philippe Petit. Both have walked their own paths, regardless of the public opinion or the consequences.

Philippe Petit gained fame for his high-wire walk between the Twin Towers of the World Trade in 1974. He performed for 45 minutes, making eight passes along the wire, during which he walked, danced, lay down on the wire, and saluted watchers from a kneeling position. Even the policemen cheered him on. All charges were dismissed in exchange for him doing a performance in Central Park for children.

New Moon in Libra — October 1, 2016, 00:11 UT

October 1st, 2016

Libra is the sign of relationships. The Moon in Libra is peace-loving and wants to get along with others. It does not like discord. The Libra Moon seeks social approval, and also has a sense of fairness.

In the opposing sign, Aries, Uranus and Eris are in a tight conjunction. The exact conjunction took place a week ago, and it was the second of the three conjunctions between Uranus and Eris in 2016 and 2017. Planets in Aries can act impulsively, and both Uranus and Eris are disruptive forces.

Rejection and feelings of isolation can be associated with Uranus. A transit of Uranus symbolizes a time, when we need to break out of routines, and let something new in our life.

Eris is the dwarf planet which was discovered in 2005, and which astronomically excluded Pluto from the main planets. Eris was named after the Greek goddess of discord.

In mythology, Eris was the goddess of strife and discord, who indirectly caused the Trojan War. Because of her tendency to cause trouble, she was the only goddess, which had not been invited to the wedding party of Peleus and Thetis. In a rage she threw a golden apple of discord addressed “To the fairest one” amongst the goddesses, provoking thus a quarrel over who the apple should be given to, which eventually led to the Trojan War.

How can these different types of energies in the opposite signs of the New Moon chart be combined constructively? According to the hermetic principle of polarity, “in everything there are two poles, or opposite aspects, and that ‘opposites’ are really only the two extremes of the same thing, with many varying degrees between them.”

Actually, Eris was seeking social approval. She wanted to get along with others, and I’m sure she felt that she was treated unjustly. It is easy to understand, why many people consider Eris as the ruler of Libra sign. According to Sue Kientz, “Eris at its best shows concern for equality, desire to improve the community, and an abiding interest in Others.”

It is time to invite Eris to the party!

***

The new discoveries are not always located far in the icy region of the Kuiper belt. I have included in the New Moon chart a newcomer, which is circulating our own Earth!

The announcement of 2016 HO3, a quasi-satellite of Earth, was made last summer, in mid-June. 2016 HO3 has been a stable quasi-satellite of Earth for almost a century, and it will continue to follow this pattern as Earth’s companion for centuries to come. 2016 HO3 is an Apollo asteroid, which orbits the Sun, but at the same time loops around our planet. Look at its intriguing dance:

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=zMJc7gmychk

In the summer solstice chart, 2016 HO3 was in the first degree of Libra, in an exact square to the Sun. At the moment it is at 8+ degrees of Virgo, in a perfect semi-sextile aspect (30 degrees) to the New Moon.

Does this new object have any astrological meaning? Generally speaking, a new planet is said to expand our consciousness and open up new possibilities. 2016 HO3 is small and distant, and it is not a moon, but it is our companion, and will be for along time to come. It may be worthwhile to observe its dance.

Full Moon in Pisces / Penumbral Lunar Eclipse — September 16, 2016, 19:05 UT

September 17th, 2016

”The maiden whom the Valar chose from among the Maiar to guide the vessel of the Sun was named Arien, and he that steered the island of the Moon was Tilion. –

”…But Tilion was wayward and uncertain in speed, and held not to his appointed path; and he sought to come near to Arien, being drawn by her splendour, though the flame of Anar scorched him, and the island of the Moon was darkened.

“…Tilion went with uncertain pace, as yet he goes, and was still drawn towards Arien, as he shall ever be; so that often both may be seen above the Earth together, or at times it will chance that he comes so nigh that his shadow cuts off her brightness and there is a darkness amid the day.”

This is how J.R.R. Tolkien describes eclipses in The Silmarillion. The Silmarillion is a posthumous collection of J.R.R. Tolkien’s works, providing the background to The Lord of the Rings.

Each year there are two eclipse seasons, and in every eclipse season there are commonly two eclipses, one Solar and one Lunar, and sometimes more. The New Moon two weeks ago was an Annular Solar Eclipse in Virgo. The second eclipse of this eclipse season is a Penumbral Lunar Eclipse in Pisces.

The Full Moon in Pisces is conjunct Chiron. In the same degree with Chiron and conjunct the Moon is 385446 Manwë. In Sagittarius 174567 Varda is square to the Mercury retrograde in Virgo. Varda is also widely squaring Manwë. Manwë and Varda are two trans-Neptunian objects discovered in 2003 and named in 2014. The names come from J.R.R. Tolkien’s fictional mythology.

Manwë was the King of the Valar in J. R. R. Tolkien’s Middle-earth legend. Manwë was a kind, compassionate ruler. He sought peace. He was lord of air, wind, and clouds. Birds were his servants, especially eagles, which flew back and forth and brought to his knowledge everything that was going on in the world. Poetry was Manwë’s delight and the song of words was his music. He lived with Varda, the Star-Queen, on Mount Taniquetil by the sea.

Varda is the Queen of the Stars, and being associated with light she is central to the dualism of light and darkness in Tolkien’s cosmology. She made the stars and constellations, and she established the courses of the Moon and the Sun. Her face radiated light.

It is almost impossible to talk about Manwë without mentioning Varda. 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…”

385446 Manwë is a binary trans-Neptunian object. The secondary is named Thorondor after the Lord of Eagles, the “mightiest of all birds that have ever been”, in Tolkien’s writing. Manwë and Thorondor are predicted to be going through a period of mutual occultations and transits between 2014 and 2018, when one object crosses in front of the other as seen from Earth.

174567 Varda is highly likely to be a dwarf planet. Its moon is named Ilmarë after Varda’s handmaiden. Tolkien was inspired by many mythologies, and the name Ilmarë possibly comes from the magical Finnish blacksmith Ilmarinen in our national epic, the Kalevala.

The Full Moon in Pisces is conjunct Chiron. This composition suggests intense emotions, confusion, and perhaps feeling like being a bit out of control. The eclipse takes place on the South node of the Moon. The South node has to do with the past. The Moon is a warehouse for memories. Pisces is one of the Water signs, and water remembers.

This can also be a moment of intuitive understanding, which with the aid of Chiron, the Maverick, offers an opportunity to something extraordinary and radiant.

New Moon in Virgo / Annular Solar Eclipse — September 1, 2016, 09:03 UT

September 2nd, 2016

The New Moon in the sign of Virgo on Sept.1, 2016, was an Annular Solar Eclipse. Annular eclipse occurs when the Moon is at its furthest point from the Earth and appears smaller than the Sun. The Moon does not cover the whole disc of the Sun, so a bright ring around it can be seen.

There are several factors emphasizing the Virgo nature of this eclipse. Also Mercury and Jupiter are in Virgo. Mercury is the ruler of the sign, and it is in exact conjunction with the magnifying Jupiter, to the degree. Mercury has turned retrograde just two days before the eclipse.

However, as I tend to focus on the new planets in the Kuiper belt, I would like to draw your attention to 90482 Orcus, which is in conjunction with the Sun and the Moon. So far Orcus has been noted in astrology much less than it deserves.

Orcus was discovered in 2004. It is probably a dwarf planet. It is a binary plutino, locked in a 2:3 resonance with Neptune, as all plutinos are. Orcus’s orbit is similar to Pluto’s, but it is oriented differently. They have the same orbital period (247 and 248 years), and both have perihelia above the ecliptic. For a brief time during their revolution around the Sun, each of them comes closer to the Sun than does Neptune. But their elongated orbits point in nearly opposite directions. Orcus is at aphelion when Pluto is at perihelion and vice versa. Because of the same orbital period and their mutual resonance with Neptune, they will always stay in opposite phases of their orbits. Orcus will come to aphelion (farthest distance from the Sun) in 2019.

Orcus’s personality was quite apparent from the beginning to Mike Brown, the discoverer. He has called it the anti-Pluto. That is why the name Orcus was chosen. Orcus was the Etruscan god of the underworld and equivalent of the Roman Pluto, and later became an alternate name for Pluto. The name was also a private reference to the homonymous Orcas Island, where Brown’s wife Diane had lived in her youth and that they visit frequently.

Orcus has a large satellite named Vanth. Mike Brown suspects that like the Pluto–Charon system, Orcus and Vanth are tidally locked. In other words, Orcus and its satellite have their same faces locked towards each other constantly.

In 2009 Brown asked readers of his weekly column to suggest possible names for the satellite. The name Vanth, after the Etruscan goddess who guided the souls of the dead to the underworld, was chosen. Brown had seen a picture of a fresco at the tomb in Anina depicting Vanth with a tear in her eye. She was waiting for the dead, carrying a torch, and silently crying. “Wouldn’t it be nice to have someone who weeps for the dead? Wouldn’t it be nice to have a guide to light the way?” wrote Brown.

Vanth in a fresco in an Etruscan tomb, image: Wikipedia

Vanth in a fresco in an Etruscan tomb, image: Wikipedia

From the astrologer’s point of view, there is one more thing about the orbit that raises interest. Astrologer Raimo A. Nikula has noted that in the astrological chart, Orcus and Pluto never are in conjunction with each other, nor oppose each other. They never get closer to each other than 51 degrees, and they never get further away from each other than 150 degrees. In other words, the smallest possible aspect between them is a septile and the widest is a quincunx.

Raimo also reminded me about the long-term opposition between Neptune and Orcus, which still is valid. The opposition has been going on several years. It has slowly started to come apart, but is now intensified by the eclipse in the near vicinity.

Establishing the astrological meaning of Orcus is in progress. Environmental issues and themes of survival, among others, have been connected to Orcus. Because of the homonymous name, also orcas, the killer whales, are associated with Orcus.

Orcas have been the main attraction of SeaWorld theme parks. The parks’ marine mammals have been a subject of criticism for years, and finally the campaigns against the captivity of dolphins and orcas have borne fruit. In 2016, SeaWorld has announced that they would end their in-park breeding programs, and eventually phase out their killer whale shows altogether.

Särkänniemi Dolphinarium in Finland has been receiving similar criticism as SeaWorld. The dolphinarium was closed in 2015. The last performance of the bottlenose dolphins was on Sept. 6, 2015, when Neptune was opposing a triple conjunction of Jupiter, Orcus and the Sun. Dolphins are symbols of the sea god Neptune.

Last week the effects of the eclipse started to show in Finland, when the management of Särkänniemi tried to transport the four dolphins of Särkänniemi from Tampere to Attica Zoological Park in Greece. The operation was started in secrecy, in the dark of the night. The animal activists and the media got wind of the transfer though, and a huge media tumult burst out. It became the main news. The management refused to communicate. They lied that because of security concerns, the authorities had advised to keep the operation secret. The hullabaloo just kept swelling and it has not calmed down.

An estimated 200 people gathered in the parking lot near the dolphinarium to follow the proceedings Saturday night. Image: Kaisu Jansson / Yle

An estimated 200 people gathered in the parking lot near the dolphinarium to follow the proceedings Saturday night. Image: Kaisu Jansson / Yle

Many rumors have been floating about the welfare of the animals in Attica Park. Activists from the animal rights group say that it is not the best location for the dolphins. Many people wish that the four dolphins, which never should have captured in the first place, could have stayed at Särkänniemi until a better place for their retirement had been found.

The closing ceremony of the Särkänniemi summer season will be held on next Saturday. Several noted artists that were supposed to perform at the celebration, have cancelled their gigs due to the park’s operations. Rock singer Jonne Aaron is the only scheduled artist who will step on stage. He is a dependable and committed Virgo. The Solar Eclipse and Orcus fall conjunct his Sun.


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