Remember 9/11!

The collapse of the towers of the World Trade Center in New York City was an event that is memorable and has an exact time, if it did not “Change Everything.”  It was such an important event for the United States that it must surely show up in the chart of the U.S if astrology has any validity whatsoever.  And the transits should be appropriate for an event of this magnitude and  nature.  A Jupiter or Neptune transit would not cut it.  As you can see from the chart below, there is no need to worry.  Not only is the transit appropriate to the nature of the situation, but in fact these are the most appropriate transits possible. In fact, this one event caused me to accept the Sibly chart.  Further work with it only increased my certainty.

Let’s look at the most obvious first: Transiting Pluto on the Ascendant.  Pluto is 17′ from exactly on the Ascendant.  But if you look at the graphical ephemeris you will see Pluto went stationary direct right on the Ascendant, and had been there for over a month.  Pluto is big events, explosions even – remember it was discovered in the Thirties –  transformation, things from the underworld that we would rather not think of.   And it took place here, in the Homeland, hence the Ascendant.

But wait, there’s more.  Notice the Pluto-Saturn opposition across the Ascendant-Descendant axis.  Fourth harmonic aspects of Saturn and Pluto are notorious.  These were involved at the start of the Spanish-American War, World War I, World War II, the Cold War and now the War on Terror. Also notice that at the time Saturn was slowing down and turned retrograde in two weeks, as can be seen from the graphical ephemeris.


One other minor point: Notice Neptune opposite the North Node of the Moon and thus conjunct the South Node. The Nodes, among other things, represents the connections among people.  But the North and South nodes also have opposite meanings.  Neptune on the North Node suggests a lack of community-sense (Ebertin).  I hypothesize that on the South node it means the opposite, since immediately after 9/11 there was an increased sense of people being together.

But notice also Uranus  slowly conjoining the Moon – the people will  be excited.  Uranus got closer and went exactly over it while the people were being prepared for the War in Afghanistan. The previous time – 84 years before – when Uranus was in the same position the people were getting prepared for our entry into World War I.  Americans were against an entry into World War I, and Wilson was reelected  in 1916 on the pledge that He Kept Us Out of War.  But that changed quickly as a propaganda campaign took place to get us to hate the Germans – the Huns.  Hamburger was called Salisbury Steak and saurkraut was called Liberty Cabbage.  This time around French Fries were renamed Freedom Fries because the French (who were responsible for our victory in the Revolutionary War, even though it  caused them to lose theirs)  did not support our War on Terror.

Notice transiting Neptune sesquiquadrate natal Mars (almost exact) and also sesquiquadrate natal Neptune.  This highlights the natal Mars square Neptune for the United States.  This square is problematic, and I will write in detail about it later,  but let me just say now that it indicates that this country’s use of violence is somewhat  hinky.   Mars and Neptune are not compatible planets, and the square can be a difficult aspect.  With transiting Neptune’s accentuation of that square and adding its own delusional nature to the mix, one can well understand why our reaction to the  event was so misdirected.

If we look at the fourth harmonic chart, we see a close opposition of natal Pluto and transiting Pluto, reflecting the semisquare of natal Pluto to the Ascendant in the chart of the United States.  I will write more about that aspect later, but for now I will quote the words of a famous agitator about that Pluto-Pluto aspect:  Those who live by the sword (natal Pluto)  will die by the sword (transiting Pluto).

I  consider this event, along with the  Pluto ingress seven years later (Pluto ingresses to Cardinal Signs have to do with the rise and  fall of nations, among other things)  a bookend of the American Empire.  This will become more clear when I talk about the other bookend and compare it to this one.


The Beatles

A couple of weeks ago we were treated to a boomer nostalgia-fest on the fiftieth anniversary of the Beatles appearing on the Ed Sullivan Show. This followed on the fiftieth anniversary of the Kennedy assassination and we will see many more fiftieth anniversaries over the next few years. How about the fiftieth anniversary of the Trips Festival on January 21, 2016? Of course, this summer we will have the centennial of the start of World War I. I’m guessing that more people are alive and in positions of power who remember the Beatles than remember World War I, and why shouldn’t they be nostalgic since in many ways this period is so unlike 50 years ago, even though we now have the first President born in the Sixties. Much attention has been paid to of late to how the minimum wage, in adjusted dollars, is worth so much less than it was in the Sixties, and, perhaps correspondingly, the spread of incomes is much greater than in the Sixties. People alive at that time remember how hopeful it all seemed, and now only those who are really wealthy can imagine that this is a hopeful time.


So I figured that I should do my part. Above is the chart for the Beatles’ appearance on the Ed Sullivan Show 8PM Sunday evening February 9, 1964. I didn’t expect to see much since this is not, despite what some think, a very critical moment. But I was wrong. We see the defining signature of the Sixties, Uranus conjunct Pluto, near the top of the chart. We notice Saturn conjoining the Moon of the United States, which it had been for a few months and would remain, getting even tighter, for the rest of 1964. The country had recently witnessed the assassination of the young and seemingly vibrant President, and so of course the people were depressed. But I want to point out aspects that were the most tight. Since I have added Harmonic Charts to the Definitions section I can discuss this event using one of my favorite techniques. These two aspects were transiting Uranus square the United States Uranus and the transiting Pluto sextile the U.S. Sun. Note that the two planets that define the Sixties, Uranus and Pluto, are the ones making the strongest aspects to the U.S. chart. The closeness is most obvious when we look at the harmonic charts. In the fourth, which shows squares as conjunctions, we see that transiting Uranus is almost on top of natal Uranus. Likewise in the sixth, which shows sextiles (as well as trines and conjunctions) as conjunctions, transiting Pluto is almost exactly on top of the U.S. Sun. In this chart transiting Uranus is opposite natal Uranus, because a square is a sextile and a half. Thus we can see that the “Sixties” planets were closely involved with the U.S. on the Beatles’ first appearance.


So this period is more important than I thought. In the 84 year Uranus cycle, which has to do with among other things Change and Revolution, this moment was at one quarter of the way through this Uranus cycle that started at then end of World War II. This period was sort of a coming out party for those who were born around the time of the initial conjunction. That statement is almost a cliche but I find it interesting that it is shown so obviously in the transits at the time. The conjunction of Pluto with the Sun took place in the Twenties, which was a transformative time in its way. Forty years later we have the sextile between the two planets. With the sextile the transformation of the country is a much lower key affair, something that you wouldn’t notice except in hindsight. At the time people thought that this was just some crazy teenagers over-reacting to some long-haired youth from across the Ocean. With a perspective of fifty years, things look different.



Ah, the chart of the United States. I could say that this is the chart of the United States that I use, but I have studied it enough to say this is the chart of the United States. I’m introducing it here since it will be used in many upcoming discussions.


First the date. Anybody (in the United States especially) who has been to a Fourth of July celebration, fireworks, or parade will know when the United States was born. The Fourth of July has been celebrated as the birthday of the country since 1777 – the first birthday. As for the time, we are fortunate that a contemporary astrologer Ebenezer Sibly (or Sibley – died 1799) constructed a birth chart for the country, but set it in London. Also, according to the Bulletin of the Philadelphia Historical Society the first signature was placed on the Declaration of Independence at 5 PM on July 4. More details about this chart are found in The Astrology of America’s Destiny by Dane Rudhyar.

For a long time, if I ever thought about it at all, I used the Gemini rising chart of the United States, which at the time seemed to be the most popular. As I said, I never really used this but when asked I would provide it. The birth time of this chart is 2 in the morning, which now that I think of it is a strange time to be signing a document. Then an event occurred over a decade ago, like the Tarot major arcana card the Tower, that validated the use of the Sibly chart for me. I have since used this chart a lot and been amazed by the results.

We will discuss the chart in great detail later, but first a few words in general. Notice Jupiter – the Greater Benefic – conjunct Venus – the Lesser Benefic – conjunct the Sun. While no one has suggested that the chart of the United States was planned (or elected) even though knowledge of esoteric subjects was widespread at the time among all the Masons founding the country, one could not imagine a more fortunate chart than one with such a triple conjunction. It would promise growth, wealth, and popularity to the maximum.


Note that at that time the three outer planets – Uranus, Neptune, Pluto – were unknown, with the first one being discovered in 1781. With those three planets removed, the chart would look like the second illustration. The Moon – the people of the country – is the only planet below the horizon, meaning hidden or not visible to the wider world. This was to be desired by the founders of the country who were very afraid of democracy. They were quite knowledgeable of the Roman Republic – and they wanted to keep the people subservient to the wiser beings – themselves. As John Jay, a Founding Father and first Chief Justice of the Supreme Court, said “Those who own the country ought to govern it”. Alexander Hamilton, another founder, surrogate son to George Washington, and first Secretary of the Treasury (look at a ten dollar bill) thought that the Senate and President should be elected for life. On the other hand the Sun – the government – is clearly above the horizon, much more “important” and visible to the outside world.

The other thing to notice is that the Midheaven-IC axis, representing the spine of the chart, is aligned with the 0 Aries-0 Libra Cardinal axis. Anything connected to the Cardinal axis will be known to the world, will have an influence on the wider world, and the fact that Midheaven – our public face – is on the Cardinal axis shows that this country will strongly influence the rest of the world. One thinks of former Secretary of State Madeleine Albright calling the United States the “indispensable nation”. Barack Obama said much the same thing , and in fact most leaders have to pay obeisance to that belief.

Barak Obama

I wonder if people have actually looked at Mr. Obama’s chart — there are some obvious things which highlight his behavior.  In the chart below I have sorted  his aspects by something I call relative orbs.     The relative orb is the actual orb divided by the maximum orb.  I use harmonic orbs with the maximum orb for a conjunction 12 degrees, for an opposition 6 degrees, for a trine 4 degrees, for a square 3 degrees and so forth.  A relative orb of 0 means the aspect is exact, thus powerful and a relative orb of 1 means that the aspect is at maximum orb, thus weak.

Natal Chart

Natal Chart

When you look at Mr. Obama’s aspects, the first thing to notice is how few tight aspects he has.  I  would say (uncharitably) that this indicates a lack of any deep principles.  If we look at the tightest aspect it is Mercury opposite Jupiter. As would be suggested by the sign rulerships of these two planets — Mercury of Gemini and Jupiter of Sagittarius —  this aspect leads to a wealth of ideas, an enthusiastic way of speaking, and a positive delivery of  thoughts. One would expect a person with such an aspect to be extremely good at making speeches, able to convey many ideas.  A president Mr. Obama is often compared to, John F. Kennedy, had a Mercury Jupiter conjunction.  In Kennedy’s case,there was also a Mars in the conjunction, adding a note of “vigaah” as he was wont to say.  In sum, Mercury-Jupiter allows you to speak with enthusiasm.

The strength and ability of this aspect is increased by the position of the moon, which shows Obama’s connection with the public, important for the President of the United States.  His Moon is in Gemini, also emphasising his ability as a speaker, and sextiles Mercury and trines Jupiter.  The enthusiastic use of his thoughts — indicated by the opposition — is forcefully directed to the public — indicated by the moon — and he is able to conveys his thoughts (Mercury) as truly heartfelt (Moon).

But the second tightest aspect, and the only other one that is less 50% maximum is Jupiter conjunct Saturn.  After Jupiter comes up with big and visionary ideas, the kind Jupiter is so good at, and  these ideas are expressed to the masses through Mercury, then Saturn comes along and pours cold water on the big ideas of Jupiter.  Saturn represents authority, and it reminds Mr. Obama that the authorities (which in present day America are the bosses of corporations and banks and the Pentagon)  do not like his big ideas.  He becomes vary cautious.  With that strong Jupiter Saturn conjunction, we will always see the same behavior, he’ll express something sounding good, and then at the next instant he will fail to do anything to bring it about.  I would contend that he was  hired to give good speeches and sparkle for the public, truly an anodyne.

Another thing to notice about Mr. Obama’s chart. The tightest hard aspect — usually square, sometimes semisquare or sesquiquadrate if there is no square  — indicates what motivates the person.  Hard aspects are impossible to ignore, they are like a sore tooth.  Obama has no squares, and in fact the only hard aspect visible is the Mars semisquare Neptune. Hard aspect between Mars and Neptune are difficult  — Mars is fire and Neptune is water and when you combine the two you either get steam or the fire is put out.   There is a prominent Mars square Neptune in the chart of the United States, which describes our relationship with the use of violence, but that is a story for another time.  In this case it shows that somehow Mr. Obama and the United States are on the same  wavelength, so far as the use of violence is concerned.  This is good for his being a representative president of the country, but certainly not one to challenge the use of violence.  In fact, he is likely to be a popular proponent of that, as can be seen in his “I Have a Drone” speeches.  This aspect suggests the titles of his two books:  The Audacity (Mars) of Hope (Neptune) and Dreams (Neptune) From My Father (Mars).  As I suggested, the hard aspect between these two planets is difficult to manifest positively.  Positively, it indicates the desire to help others who may not be as fortunate as oneself.  But more likely it will manifest itself as misdirected energies, bad or incomplete actions, self-deception about one’s goals and purposes.


If we look at Mr. Obama’s fourth harmonic chart (90-degree dial) we see that Saturn is very prominent with hard aspects to both the Ascendant and the Midheaven.  This further emphasizes the importance of Saturn, and further suggest the basically conservative nature of Mr. Obama.  Notice the very tight Saturn Uranus trine in this  — it is almost exact with a relative orb of 0.06.  This represents an inconjunct in the first harmonic chart, also with the same relative orb.  The traditional interpretation of an inconjunct between Saturn and Uranus is  that the principles represented by these two planets — Saturn, conservatism writ large — and Uranus, which is the radical principle,  have  nothing in common.  As said, Saturn is very strong in Mr. Obama’s chart, and it has nothing whatsoever to do with the radical Uranus, despite what many on the left would believe.

Two other things I would note about this chart indicate his strong — both positively and negatively — effect on the American people.  First notice that his Venus at 1 Cancer is conjoined the Venus of the United States at 3 Cancer.  If these were two people, you could suggest there would be mutual love, perhaps they could even get married. The other factor I have touched on before, it is the Moon in Mr. Obama’s chart aspecting both Mercury and Jupiter.  But it is also opposite the Midheaven of his chart, representing his public — and for a President this is especially important.  This indicates he has an important, special connection with the public.  In  president’s charts, the planet in closest aspect to the Midheaven seems to indicate what will be remembered for.  With the previous president, George W. Bush, this planet is Mars in a hard aspect to the Midheaven, and indeed Bush is most remembered for the two wars, which of course are very martial, that he started.   With Mr. Obama and his Moon connection with the Midheaven, this suggests that he will be remembered for his connection to the people of the United States.  Remember that “connection” does not mean positive — love — or negative — hate, but just rather that the connection is strong and he will be remembered for it.