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Fifteen

24 April 2004

BdF6     original art by
    Bryan de Flores


           (Some of this is very detailed, but there's meat here for everybody.   Any paragraph that's tedious, skip it and try the next one.   Even if you hit several tedious paragraphs in a row, keep skipping till you find one that connects.)

           The core of intuitive astrology lies in combining keywords.   For instance, if Saturn stands for focus and Venus stands for values, then a person with a strong Venus-Saturn probably knows what they want.   It's important to put the probably in there in one way or another, because without that you may be taking someone's power away.   It's also important to recognize that astrology delineates issues or dimensions rather than specifics.   So for someone with a strong Venus-Saturn, knowing what they want is an issue for them, a strong dimension of their life.   They may have programming or other processes (astrological or otherwise) going on in their life, which could convert that issue into deep self-knowledge, strong doubt, or even a need to act like they know what they want when they dont.   But one way or another, knowing what they want is important to them.

           Notice my patina of certainty in that paragraph.   Certainty is a technique for recovering your intuition, it aint intuition.   One technique for training the intuition, is to ask ourself when doubt arises, "Well, what if we did know?" and then accept the answer that the mind has already rejected.   That's all Doubt is, after all, the mind's unwillingness to accept a known answer because the mind would have to reorganize too many other "facts" if it accepted that perspective.   We do know.   But we dont always have the right perspective.   We all project.   No one eliminates projection from their life, they only get conscious of it.   It's so easy for any of us to misperceive someone's anger as fear, or someone's love as manipulation.

           So an intuitive astrologer doesnt accuse anybody of being any certain way, or try to label somebody with some tag they may resent.   We can ask a Venus-Saturn person if they usually know what they want.   We can suggest that they may often know what they want.   To use your certainty for political gain - by having to demonstrate to someone that you're right - should be a conscious act.   There are times when you'll want to do that, and times when it will further your goals, and those two sets of times may not be the same.   So it's an essential issue for any intuitive professional to work into awareness.

           There are lots of other keywords for Venus and Saturn.   You might see Venus as passion and Saturn as limitation, so you may see a person who is frequently restraining themself, or a person whose passion often exceeds your limits.   You might see Venus as beauty and Saturn as identity, so you may see a person who worries about whether they're beautiful enough, or a person who has confidence in their presence.   And it doesnt much matter what you see, if you're unwilling to work to discover what the other person sees, and work to build a bridge between what they see and what you see.

           There are times when what people are doing is not working for them.   You do no service by being positive in these circumstances.   But you do even less service by being negative.   What you want to do is offer well-chosen alternatives.   So a Venus-Saturn person might express frustration about the way they hold themselves back at times.   An alternative you might offer in that situation is the Perlsian alternative - ask what they're gaining by holding themselves back.   After all, they do know what they want.   We all stumble when we want two things which seem to contradict, and the path to clarity lies through examining our unconscious premises that conflict.   There are no contradictions in the World, only in our beliefs.   And lots of them - or we'd all just manifest what we want and live happily ever aftill the next transit - the next transit will shift the synergy, and we'll want something different.

           Now, suppose a Venus-Saturn person had an eclipse on their Venus-Saturn.   What would that mean?   Well, first we need a keyword for eclipse.   Eclipses seem to me to bring illumination.   But they darken the light!   Yes, they create contrast, so we can see what we normally don't.   We're as easily blinded by brightness, as we are by darkness.   Now we have both and the duality is made clear.   If we stick with value for Venus and focus for Saturn and add illumination for eclipse, where does that lead us?   How many sensible sentences can you make using the words value, focus, and illumination?   It's really that simple.

You may find that the ways you focus on your values are illuminated, so you become more productive.

You may see your values illuminated more clearly, and find that you focus on betraying yourself less.

The number of combinations is limited only by your imagination - which is after all your intuition.   Then you can start in with alternative keywords.

           Of course nothing is ever never or always, but in astrology as in life it's never either/or, always both/and.   As Lazaris says, "That's always true - except when it isn't."   But any given set of concepts may be less relevant, or more likely, not communicate as well.   Sometimes you may want to have the "transit" (the current event - here the eclipse) act upon the "natal configuration" (the locations of the planets when you were born - in this example the Venus-Saturn).   So for instance, the focus-on-values (natal) may become illuminated (transit), rather than awareness (transit) becoming intensely-valued (natal).   But it could go either way.   Most of the time you'll have both/and, but the transit-acting-on-natal may be more relevant more often than the natal-acting-on-transit.   I know, this is a twisted paragraph.   Ignore it if it hasn't caught your attention, spend some time with it later if it has.

           Now, suppose the eclipse were to happen at the ides of Scorpio, the zodiacal equivalent of Halloween, where the Veil is thin and all manner of angels and goblins run loose.   Well, if we just combine that keyword with the illumination keyword, we might expect that for everyone, hidden fears will come into the light where they can either be personified (the US government is so clearly demonstrating this process for everyone), or identified as simply old feelings that were buried long ago when we had no better disposition for them (which we can now love into new talents and breathe into excitement).

           Combining this notion of illuminating hidden fears with Venus-Saturn, we might find it's hidden fears of inadequacy that come forth for embrace, or hidden fears of self-betrayal, or hidden fears of being rejected for being too self-knowing - as a child in a World where everyone else is stumbling around blind, a person could easily repudiate self-knowledge in order to fit in.   We might find that what's illuminated is the sense of limitation - learning that what appeared to be conflicts were simply different goals that had never negotiated with one another, and facilitating those negotiations, might liberate a great deal of passion.

           And what if it was Neptune under this eclipse, rather than Venus-Saturn?   Neptune is seen as the fog of confusion by materialists, and as the Glory of God/dess by spiritualists.   Would be nice to have that apparent contradiction illuminated, wouldn't it!   Especially at the ides of Scorpio, where it could manifest as a fear that confusion could overwhelm us, or a trepidation about the power of the God/dess.   As often as the institutional Church has condemned folks with their own connection to the God/dess, we could have many ancient fears about what they do to us when someone sees us bypassing the self-appointed official intermediaries.   And remember, Ascension means holding many perspectives simultaneously, being conscious of more than one parallel at once.   The cultural fear that we're programmed to hold around that is the fear of losing our mind.   In the post-Christian age, the shrinks replace the priests as the self-appointed intermediaries, Prozac replaces wafer-and-wine.

           Now what if the eclipse squared our Nodes?   That would put our Nodes at the midpoints of the fixed signs, the power points of the whole zodiac.   Then what would be illuminated is our power, and the ways we fear it.   With bleedthrough from parallels likely at this Scorpio midpoint, we're likely to uncover fears of power we didn't even know we had.   There's a Jet Li film about this, called The One.

           The 4 May eclipse squares Neptune, with the Moon on the South Node at the ides of Scorpio, and the vacancy at the ides of Leo.   So it asks us to surrender (Neptune) our ideals (Aquarius) and instead open to Mystery, and let go of attachments to specific outcomes.   It warns us that the hidden fears (Scorpio) which come forth will be ancient (South Node) and emotional (Moon), and that learning to embrace them will allow us to recover a great deal of skill about "keeping our heart open in Hell," skill we need if we are to hold the vision of Peace on Earth.   The Sun here keeps us grounded in hardcopy reality (Taurus) and reminds us that the goal (North Node) is to integrate spirit and flesh, not to castigate flesh for the sake of spirit.   And the secret (vacancy) to pulling all this off, is to stay focused on our confidence (Leo) that we can do this.

           But the real power in this eclipse is held by Jupiter, who, coming off retreat a few hours after the eclipse, is standing still in the sky opposite Uranus, which has just initiated Vesta (see {jbull} Orange Chocolate Eclairs).   Jupiter takes everything we said before and multiplies it by 10, just because it's Jupiter.   Then it adds its own flavor - from Virgo.   Virgo is about breaking apart what's become rigid - haven't we heard about that somewhere recently?   Here's another apparent contradiction - the confidence of Leo as the key to lensing Ascension, yet the deconstruction of Virgo as the path of power.   Actually, not a difficult contradiction to resolve - it simply asks us to maintain our faith while the matrix crumbles around us.

           Jupiter sits at 9 Virgo, "A man making a futurist drawing" [Jones p.308].   9 Virgo is a 15 (159 degrees from 0 Aries, 1+5+9=15), as is the date of the eclipse (4 May 2004, 5+4+2+4=15) - except that the eclipse occurs on 5 May from Baghdad east to Fiji.   15 is The Devil - how appropriate for the ides of Scorpio - signifying re-integration of the natural phenomena that we've been programmed to reject, like our sensuality [Arrien pp. 78-9] or the "urge to express one's individualized sense of value regardless of tradition" [Rudhyar p.156].   East of the Wailing Wall, we're working with a 16 (5 May 2004, 5+5+2+4=16) instead, The Tower, "a symbol of the change and awakening that is required to dismantle that which is artificial, false-to-fact, or conditioned within our nature" [Arrien p.82].   Some intriguing possibilities there.

           The eclipse itself is 4 May Honolulu 10:30am, Seattle 1:30pm, New York 4:30pm, London 9:30pm, Jerusalem 11:30pm, Sydney 6:30am 5 May.   It's a total eclipse of the Moon, so it will be visible only between sunset and sunrise, not during the day.   It's not visible from North America, fully visible from Singapore to Vienna, partially visible at Moonrise (sunset) in Europe and South America, and partially visible at Moonset (sunrise) in Japan, China, Australia (http://sunearth.gsfc.nasa.gov/eclipse/LEplot/LEplot2001/LE2004May04T.gif).   When ya look at it this way, it's more appropriate to say the eclipse occurs on 5 May than on 4 May.   So everyone on the Planet may get the opportunity to have their integrity lapses illuminated after all.

           The fact that it's a total eclipse tells us that we're still in the middle of the series - in fact, this series doesn't peak till 2094.   The series began in 1427 - while the soul that became Chris Columbus was still a coupla lifetimes from his ill-fated voyage - at 28 Taurus, "a woman, past her 'change of life,' experiences a new love" [Rudhyar p.87], or, as Jones [p.206] puts it, "a symbol of the eternal promise underlying all objective existence, since the fullness of life is ageless and the human spirit immortal in its functioning."   Sounds rebirthy, eh?   More like The Tower than The Devil, though I'm sure there are many that would consider Rudhyar's image to be a Satanic possession.

           And of course Jupiter and Uranus, with Dragon and Saturn, still make that almost-grand-sextile at 7-15 of the yin signs, joined by the eclipse itself, with the vacancy at 12 Capricorn.   Which brings up the question of how close must our natal hotspots be before we oughta start including them in our keyword amalgamations?   Well, that depends.   For an actual transiting planet, like the 9-Virgo Jupiter or the 15-Scorpio eclipse, I normally use one degree of "slop" (astrologers call it "orb"), but this is a major event, so I wouldn't object if someone wanted to use two or three degrees.   That would mean 8-10 Virgo and 14-16 Scorpio for 1-degree orb, and 6-12 Virgo and 12-18 Scorpio for 3-degree orb.   The closer it is, the stronger the effect, so it depends partly on your sensitivity.

           Bear in mind though, that the impact of an eclipse is usually felt during the 6-18 months following it, rather than during the week preceding, which is the case with most transits.   Of course anyone sensitive to it, and anyone whose hotspots are lit up by it, may well be feeling it already.   But eclipses are year-scale projects and we won't be starting our illumination of the Veil in earnest till 4-5 May.

           A "hotspot" by the way, is any prominent degree in a chart - a planet like Jupiter, an angle like Midheaven, an asteroid like Vesta, an intangible like a Node, a house or sign cusp, or a calculated location like the Vertex.   It's just easier to say "hotspot" than to say "planetorangleorasteroidorconceptorcusporcalculation."   Notice that we always round up.   This is because zero degrees thirty minutes is the first degree of a sign.   But beware, lotsa people round down.   It usually doesnt matter, cuz nobody uses less than 1 degree orb anyway.   In these {jbulls} we always round (up) to the nearest degree, but if you really wanna see how intensely you may feel an event, you'll want to consider minutes too.

           The zodiac is marked off in 360 segments called "degrees," and each of those is marked off in 60 smaller segments called "minutes."   So Jupiter is actually at 8:55 - 8 degrees and 55 minutes - of Virgo.   We round up to 9.   So if yer natal hotspot's at 7:02, we'd call that 8, which would be within one degree of orb of 9.   But it's dang near two degrees away, as 7:02 to 8:55 is 1:53.   This only matters when you want to know how intensely the event will likely be felt.

           For a vacancy, the range of the actual planets or hotspots defines the orb - with the almost-grand-sextile here, actual members range from Uranus at 7 Pisces to the eclipse at 15 Scorpio.   And it doesn't hurt to include Neptune at 16 Aqua, since it has such a prominent role in the eclipse.   So that gives us a range of 7-16. We could tack orb onto that - 1 degree orb would give us 6-17.   But the closer we are to the center, the stronger the effect.   That's why we say "12 Capricorn" for the vacancy, because it's in the middle.   But any hotspot you have between 7 and 16 yin or fixed is gonna be pretty involved in the event.

           Not everyone may be familiar with the terms "yin" and "fixed."   The signs fall into groups, like so...

Aries - yang cardinal fire
Taurus - yin fixed earth
Gemini - yang mutable air
Cancer - yin cardinal water
Leo - yang fixed fire
Virgo - yin mutable earth
Libra - yang cardinal air
Scorpio - yin fixed water
Sadge - yang mutable fire
Cap - yin cardinal earth
Aqua - yang fixed air
Pisces - yin mutable water
we just count around the zodiac by two, three, and four - yang-yin-yang-yin..., cardinal-fixed-mutable-cardinal..., fire-earth-air-water-fire-earth...   Yang signs are dynamic and assertive, yin signs magnetic and attractive.   Cardinal signs create, fixed signs give structure, and mutable (as in "mutation") signs release.   Fire signs are about spirit, earth signs matter, air signs about mind, and water signs about emotion.   You can kinda see how astrology can be impatient with a materialistic culture - such a culture focuses on only 25% of the World.   And impatient with a culture that condemns emotion - it excludes 25% of its reality.   Not to mention a culture dominated by the yang Patriarch that denies the mutable.

           Finally, the orb on a retreat is sharply fixed.   Jupiter's station is at 8:55, its retreat spanning 8:55 to 18:54.   So even though for convenience we call that "9-19," the hotspots you have at 9 degrees may not be impacted, if they're less than 8:55.   That's because the impact of a retreat is caused by the retiring planet crossing a hotspot three times.   Jupiter crosses 8:58 and 18:51 three times - it crosses 8:51 and 18:58 only once.

           Probably raised more questions than I answered, eh?   That's okay, answers mean we're stuck in the mind, but questions mean we're alive.

           Three stones for this eclipse.   When ya wanna trip out over there on the other sidea the Veil, use this starry-eyed Morganite fella, http://www.jbuss.com/jbl4/morganite6.htm, to take ya to universes that are very different from our own.   Morganite's basically a pink Emerald (that is, a Beryl, or Beryllium Aluminum Silicate), with Manganese providing the pinkness.

           If that gets a little too spacy, this Rose Quartz, http://www.jbuss.com/jbl4a/quartzrose2.htm, will bring ya back to center.   It's usually a trace of Iron that pinks Quartz (which is otherwise pure Silicate), Iron's a bit more grounding than Manganese, and while Beryllium and Aluminum are both centering, the orange tint in this particular Morganite can trigger more emotion.   It can also fire up those Leo channels, though.

           And when ya wanna come back to the Taurean solar half of the eclipse, this Franklinite/Zincite, http://www.jbuss.com/jbl4/frzincite1.htm, will zing ya right back into yer body like onea them snappy new dog leashes.   The Iron predominates in this one, with a load of Zinc added for good measure.   The Zinc grounds us back to materiality without tying us to old forms that are no longer productive.

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