Full Moon in Virgo — February 25, 2013, 20:26 UT

The Moon was full in Virgo, the sign which is symbolized by a Virgin carrying a sheaf of corn. The Virgin represents purity. We connect the sign with the harvest time. The Sun in the opposite sign Pisces was in exact conjunction with the god of maize, Teharonhiawako. Magnifying Jupiter in Gemini was tightly in the midpoint squaring the luminaries.

Teharonhiawako is a binary Kuiper belt object with an orbital period of about 295 years. The name comes from Iroquois mythology. The large companion is named Sawiskera. The binary was discovered in 2001. The Iroquois call themselves the Haudenosaunee, which means “They Are Building a Long House.”

In the Haudenosaunee creation myth Teharonhiawako was a son of the granddaughter of the Great Spirit creation god. He became a farmer and was loved by the people. His cruel and destructive twin brother Sawiskera was a skilled hunter, and he was eventually conquered by his brother. The Haudenosaunee were a mix of farmers, fishers, gatherers and hunters, though their main diet came from farming. Corn was one of the main crops and considered as a special gift from the Creator.

Maize, or corn, has been grown thousands of years. It is the most widely grown grain crop throughout the Americas. More than 85% of the US maize crop and more than 30% of the world’s maize crop was genetically modified corn in 2011. Genetically modified crops are plants, the DNA of which has been altered using genetic engineering techniques.

In 1972 an American biochemist Paul Berg (born June 30, 1926) created the first recombinant DNA molecules. His pioneering work led to the development of modern genetic engineering. Paul Berg has a square aspect between his Saturn and Neptune. A square aspect creates action. Saturn represents structure and Neptune’s principle is to dissolve the structure. In triple-conjunction with his Saturn he has asteroid DNA and Teharonhiawako.

GM crops can benefit farmers and possibly help to grow bigger crops in developing countries, but there are also many serious concerns regarding the subject. Potentially GM foods pose a big health risk, and there are environmental concerns, too.

In the past days a so-called horse meat scandal has spread massively in Europe. DNA testing on meat products has been carried out. Horse meat is not dangerous. The issue is not the horse meat, but the faulty package labels. We are entitled to know what we eat, or what exactly is in the food package that we buy. We are entitled to know if there is horse meat in the lasagna, or genetically modified maize in the breakfast cereals. The positive outcome of the developing scandal hopefully is that tracking of the origins of our food becomes easier.

Lastly I want to mention a newly named Centaur planet, Orius, although it is a bit too early to say anything about the astrological meaning of it. In the Full Moon chart Orius is opposite Jupiter, forming a grand square pattern with the luminaries and Jupiter. The minor planet was named after the Centaur Orius, who lived in the mountains, and was killed by Heracles when he tried to steal the wine of Pholus. The body was discovered in 2009 and the naming took place about a month ago. The orbital period is almost 100 years, and its orbit crosses those of Uranus and Neptune.

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