Archive for May, 2009

“Squares, Opposition, and the Number Nine Equals the Hermit”




In dealing with astrology charts, I have always found awe and fear when the aspects of the squares and the oppositions are mentioned, as compared to the sextile or trine aspects.  I believe it is due to the fact that the word malefic is associated with these aspects meaning harmful or baleful.  One has to take words in context to understand the full meaning of what is being said.  A square happens when two planets are ninety degrees from each other, which are roughly three Signs apart.  They are usually Cardinal (Aries, Cancer, Libra, Capricorn) which denotes fast action, Fixed (Taurus, Leo, Scorpio, Aquarius) which is a more tedious approach to the situation, and the Mutable (Gemini, Virgo, Sagittarius, Pisces) square which can go either way, depending on other factors in the chart.  An opposition occurs in a chart when two planets are one hundred and eighty degrees apart, or in direct opposition to one another.  The action here is of conflict and the need to resolve the situation where both parties are in agreement.

The Square (90 degrees) and Opposition (180 degrees) reduces down to the number nine (9) which is the highest of the single digit numbers and in its’ elevated position poses certain responsibilities.  The number nine is educational, philosophical, and spiritual in nature with the ability to heal in resolving conflicts.  Since I believe all things are connected and related to one another in this world, I have looked at the Hermit tarot card, which is number nine in the major trump cards.  The card depicts a hermit, monk, philosopher, or a magus on top of the mountain of attainment with a lantern which uncovers the solutions to his enquiry, or leads the way for others to follow.  The snowy peaks are symbolic of his isolation, because his wisdom sets him apart from the rest of the world.  He holds his lantern with the light which is made up of two triangles; one facing up and the other facing down.  The triangle only holds 180 degrees, but the combination of the two equals 360 degrees creating a whole circle, the symbol of the creator.  The 360 degrees using the rules of numerology reduces to the number nine.  The Hermit indicates solitude, introspection, retreat and deep understanding of the situation.  The number nine is ruled by Mars which represents the stamina, the perseverance and energy that you will need to fight the obstacles in ones’ life.  Mars shows straight forwardness of approach to the problems, and the enjoyment of risk taking.     

In combining all these thoughts together in delineating a chart, one has to keep in mind that the squares and oppositions may be harmful and baleful in that it forces us to face our demons and to seek our higher self in resolving the conflicts, and to come to a solution that will continue our growth in this world.  It is not easy to look within and finally reach the mountain top, and it is possible we may never reach it fully.  What is important is not that we failed to reach the summit, but that we started the climb.  If at times one feels the burden of the aspects are too much, just meditate on the hermit card, and realize that your higher self will give you the power and energy to continue the path.  The squares and oppositions are confronting us to look within like the hermit, and to reach our highest potential by fulfilling our purpose which the Divine has laid out in our charts.


“William Lilly’s Horary Question-Destiny or Choice?”



Horary astrology is an ancient branch of the art, in which an astrologer attempts to answer a question by constructing a horoscope for the exact time at which the question was received and understood by the astrologer.  The answers to the horary question might be a simple yes or no, but it is generally more complex with insights into the motives of the querent (questioner), the motives of others involved in the issue, and the options available.  William Lilly is regarded as one of the principle authorities in horary astrology in his time and ours.  England’s most illustrious astrologer led a very colorful life in a politically unstable period of time (1602 to 1681).


In the June/July 2009 issue of “The Mountain Astrologer” magazine, is a fantastic and informative article on a horary chart by Deborah Houlding who currently runs the Skyscript Astrology Web site, entitled “Lilly’s Purchase of Master B’s Houses”.  She not only gives you some history of William Lilly and the time period, but leads you through the conclusions of her analysis of the planets and their aspects, etcetera.  Her analysis of Mr. Lily’s delineation of his own chart was one that had many obstacles, and that he overlooked the difficulties because of his desire to obtain the property since it brought many happy memories


The background of the story is about a gentleman, who was not able to finish his higher education due to the financial difficulties of his father and had to become a manservant.  He had many happy years with his employer and married the wife after his death.  And to make a long story short, his wife died also and left him with some money, which he could use to purchase the house he lived in with a couple of rentals, which would give him the means to live without working.  Unfortunately like the chart showed, the seller had the upper hand and was demanding a lot more money then the property was worth.  Although he would be able to borrow the money in time as the chart forecasted, the transaction did not leave him much money to live on.  I am sure that Deborah Harding would agree with me that most astrologers would predict caution and awareness, and the possibility of forgetting about the deal.


This chart proves to me the need to look at a natal chart when confronted with a difficult horary which could go either way.  The important thing about Mr. Lilly, does he have the talent and wisdom to bring a difficult situation to a happy ending?  We find the answer in his natal chart with many planets in the second house of money.


Although William Lilly chose to buy the houses, I believe that destiny played a part in redirecting him to a new career that would bring him fame and fortune.  At the time of the sale, he had only been studying astrology for two years, and about two years after the sale he realized he could make a living from it.  Later in 1647 he published “Christian Astrology” which brought him fame and fortune.


My thoughts are the following: 1.) Mr. Lilly may have had joyful memories of the place, but as a land owner, he would be well respected.  Therefore he would have achieved a status worthy of a gentleman of the period.  2.) Realizing he had no income he made an effort to learn what he enjoyed doing.  Difficulties are the mother of innovations in ones’ life.  We learn from hardship and pain and grow from that point in our lives..  Had he decided not to buy the property, history may have been written differently, as he may have been able to live on the inheritance and astrology may not have become that important in his life.  So in truth William Lilly not only chose his destiny, but allow destiny to choose and guide him.  I am wondering what you think about this matter, and if everything went smoothly in our lives, would we be were we are today?


To me this chart illustrates the need for astrologers to relate solar, lunar return and horary charts to the natal horoscope, and to realize that although we have free will, we are still fulfilling our destiny. 


“Why More on Morin?”


I have always wondered whether we choose our destiny or does destiny choose us.   As a student of astrology for many years I can attest to my stupidity in choosing some of the paths I have taken during my life’s journey.  I am not sure, had I known some of the predictions during my early years, it would not have made any difference. But now I am certain that I may not be able to avoid all the pitfalls, but will avoid more then before.  Like Morin, astrology proves to me there is a divine force directing this world.  I love the way he thinks, because he has developed a system that works, and allows one to build upon it.  There are no key systems to the interpretation of the chart, as much as a synthesis of the chart in a very logical manner.

I find reading his books difficult because of the differences of the language, translation into English and the time period, but if one will persevere the fruit of the labor is worth it.  The importance of always relating the directions back to the natal is a point sometimes forgotten in this modern astrology.  The way he uses the lord of the cusp and the opposite houses gives meaning that makes sense.  His book “Astrologia Gallica Book Twenty-Three Revolutions” deals with solar returns and is indispensable in any book collection.  Since studying him I only have praise for him, as I am beginning to have for the many other early traditional and classical astrological writers and practitioners.

The strange thing about Morin is I have come full cycle as my first astrology consultation was from a devotee of his system.  I didn’t know at the time, but I wish now that I was more receptive to the message.  The following paragraphs are my edited version of Morin from Wikipedia.  You will be able to read the whole article on their website.

“Most famous for his work as an astrologer, towards the end of his life Jean-Baptiste, Morin completed Astrologia Gallica which consisted of twenty six books covering natal, judicial mundane, electional and meteorological astrology.  Morin is known as having been particularly concerned with prediction through methodical extrapolation of what is promised in the natal chart.  His techniques were directions, solar and lunar return, and he regarded transits a subsidiary technique though one key to accurate timing of events nonetheless.

Morin challenged much of the classical astrological theory of the day, including the astrology of Ptolemy, in an attempt to present a solid set of tools while rendering reasons for and against particular techniques, some of which may be considered crucial to many astrologers before and during Morin’s lifetime.  At the same time, Morin vested himself heavily in promoting in mundo directions, a technique largely based on the work of Regiomontanus that became available thanks to then-recent advancement in mathematics.  In his work, Morin provides examples of successful delineation of events that otherwise could not be delineated with the same relative degree of certainty.

Morin’s life has been that of trial and tribulation by his own testament.  He died in Paris of natural causes at seventy three years of age.”

“Saturn in the Second House of the Solar Return”



As the economy seems to worsen and no one seems to be immune from its grip, more people are concern with their financial health.  Even those who seem untouched with what is going on around them are expressing concerns that we may be on the brink of a gathering storm.  The well off and the rich, whom are normally sheltered from any recession are holding back and those companies catering to the rich have experienced downturns.  The hospitality industry that usually comes out on top during this type of recession is in an extreme slump.


I was concerned with one of the people who worked as a head chief in a convention upscale hotel at the end of 2008 and I had a solar return chart done for him for 2009 and 2010.  In interpreting the chart for his finances I concentrated looking at the second, fifth and eight houses.  Although I normally don’t skim a chart, I wanted to see if there were any trends in his chart that might prove more general for everyone working at the hotel.  He had worked for the hotel for many years in a management position, and is well liked by those underneath him.


Even looking at a chart casually one must always remember to relate it back to the natal chart, as a solar chart can only produce what is promised in the natal.  My first glance was to see what house of the natal solar return ascendant was in, as it will give one a clue to what is important in the coming year.  What planets were in the solar return first house and what was the ruling planet of this house.  The same steps are to be taken for the mid heaven and the second house of money as that was my first concern.  What I discovered was very interesting and enlightening. it confirms the accuracy of astrology.


Saturn was in the solar return second, the house of finance and possessions.  The following definition comes from Planets in Solar Returns by Mary Shea.  Saturn placed in the second house is generally not a sign of financial success and monetary abundance.  It usually means learning to live with less either because you have to or because you want to. To some, money is seen as only a means to an end and not an end in itself.  Fiscal control is necessary for goal fulfillment, and their priorities more important then money.  The 2nd house is the house of self worth, and during the year the person can place himself in a situation where he is either underpaid or not fully appreciated.


Jean-Baptiste Morin de Villefrance states in his books to use the rulers of both cusps that surrounds the house to get a deeper meaning of interpretation.  The ruler of the third is Venus, and the natal Venus near the natal first in the ninth, sextiles Jupiter.  Venus also returns to its own sign in the natal and is about to change signs, which is very meaningful here, as the need to change ones thinking is taking place. The part of fortune is in the solar return fifth with Jupiter ruler of this house and the eighth house.  What is quite interesting is that the ruler of the fifth and eighth is Jupiter which sextiles Venus giving some beneficial aspect to relieve the tension from the control of Saturn, so the individual will learn from what is happening


From all of this I have concluded that the person with Venus in the natal first expresses his individuality and thinking as one, I Have so that I Am.  His ability to adapt and to improve his situation serves him well.  His need especially during the coming year is to secure a stable future with the need to see his own worth.  I say this because to me the second house not only concerns money and possessions, but knowledge and how to use it is more important then having money.  His ability to take his thinking to a more pragmatic level to secure the future he desires is imminent.  Saturn definitely worked its magic as he had to take a salary cut and his 401 has taken a hit, but Venus in the ninth gave him the ability to work magic in picking his investment and balancing his concerns.  The need for the future is for him to understand his ability to analyze a stock investment that is half mixed with logic and the need to I Have.  The I Have is his survival instinct to a better future.

Subject A








“The Planets and their Meanings”



Self-Issues of identity – physical vitality – will – personality – self-expression

5th house ▬ Leo


Emotional development – instinctive – intimacy – home and family – mother.
4th house ▬ Cancer.


Thoughts – beliefs – learning – communication – short journeys – siblings
3rd house, Gemini ▬ 6th house, Virgo


Taste – attitudes – values – self-indulgence – beauty – lover – muse
2nd house, Taurus ▬ 7th house, Libra


Hero – energy – drive – sexual desire  
1st house, Aries ▬ 8th house, traditional ruler of Scorpio


Expansion of consciousness – limitations –  self-actualization – confidence – philosophy – theology – faith – optimism

9th house, Sagittarius ▬ 12th house, traditional ruler of Pisces.


Limitations = structure – goals-  emotional security – responsibility – image of the father.

 10th house, Capricorn ▬ 11th house, traditional ruler of Aquarius


Radical thinking –  rebellion – disruption of status quo – unexpected

11th house, Aquarius


Transcendence – spiritual experience –  addiction – merging of boundaries – inspiration.

 12th house, Pisces.


Transformation – breakdown of reality – destruction leading to rebirth – power issues – sexuality – compulsion

 8th house, Scorpio

“Planets, Aspects and the Overlords—Oops!!!!!”


In reviewing the meanings of the major aspects, planets make, I realized that through the years I have developed my own method in understanding their influences upon the chart.  For me in using this method I no longer see an aspect as favorable or as a hindrance, but as an aspect to be integrated and to be used to its best potential.

A conjunction is an aspect in which two planets or more are close enough, that their energies are connected together.  For example Jupiter and Venus would exert a generally fortunate influence, where as Mars and Venus would exert a more active and intense influence.  One should see it as two people standing side by side in a circle looking towards the center; they support each other and feel the influence of the other, but can not see each other.  To me this means the influence is only an advantage if we are aware of it and put it to good use.  A conjunction can only promise an effect, to bring it into reality one must work with it.  To help give more meaning to these aspects I have given planet Mercury as the overlord to the conjunction as it is the planet that tends to take on the influences of the planets it befriends, and this is what a conjunction does.  These overlords are keys to a greater understanding and expansion of the aspects.  Working with them works wonders in ones interpretation of the zodiacal chart.

An opposition is 180 degrees between two planets, is referred to as the aspect of separation.   It is regarded as challenging and tends more to signify inner conflicts between internal and external factors.  The opposition can represent one’s own inner conflicts which are influencing us or some outer source pushing us to make a decision. The opposition indicates a stand-off where it is impossible for the two planets to function simultaneously, one will dominate.  The overlord would be Mars as it represents strength of will for action to fight the obstacles in life and to penetrate the world.

The square is 90 degrees between two planets, and is regarded as challenging and inharmonious.  It is the most difficult of the hard aspects because if we imagine we are one of the planets and the planet who is squaring us is represented by another person who is to the side of us and this person is pushing us side ways.  The opposition, the person is either in front or in the back of us pushing us forward or backwards which is more conducive to our thinking.  The person pushing us side ways is trying to redirect our direction and we apparently are putting up a fight until after much struggle we decide to turn in that direction.  The squares are the dark nights of the soul, but if we get through it, the accomplishment we achieve is the pot of gold at the end of the rainbow.  The overlord for the square is Saturn which represents structure, steadfastness, limitations, security, stamina, and consistency.

A sextile is an aspect of 60 degrees between two planets, is traditionally regarded as beneficial.  The sextile drops opportunities in ones lap, but we must develop the potential handed to us to receive the rewards.  The overlord is Venus the symbol for love, feeling, harmony and one who can bring and merge things together.

The trine is an aspect of 120 degrees between two planets, is considered harmonious and an easy flow between the two.  Its aspect is good fortune, as the two planets really like one another.  Just think of it as a silver spoon in the mouth as everything comes together with ease.  The overlord is Jupiter, who is most generous and has much dignity, wisdom, hope, morals, affluence, success, and abundance.

There are more key words one can find for the overlords in other sources, but the more you use it with the aspects, they will begin to reveal more of their secrets.  Your interpretations of the chart will come alive and be more meaningful.

Regards and may the overlords be with you,


“Banking on your Dream Account with the Planets”

Mercury 1

In the self help movement one of the ways to create the future you want is to visualize daily what you want in your life.  They even have a wish bulletin board which one tacks up the pictures of what you are wishing for.  One has hundreds of affirmations to get you through the day.  If any of you out there are like me, none of the above practices really ever helped me.  I would take two steps forward and then fall back three steps.  Don’t get me wrong, working at what I wanted helped, but it constantly reminded me I wasn’t where I wanted to be.

To me, trying to visualize the ideal world, was working against me, because I kept reminding myself I needed to create it, so it wasn’t available now.  If visualizing and affirming reminded me of work, it also told my subconscious I wasn’t there.  And not being there brought stress and fear, and these energies only help to create the world I didn’t want.  Hate, fear and stress, when combined are a powerful stimulus to the creation of things that are being thought about.  The self help movement keeps telling us not to think negatively, but if you are trying to think positive thoughts, you know you are in the wrong place.

What I am going to comment about now may not work for everyone, but it certainly is helping me.  Don’t get me wrong, I am still working with it, but I am further along then I have ever been with the other systems.  I remember when I was a child that I would dream of what I was going to be when I grew up.  I day dreamed constantly of what I wanted and at the same time I took positive steps through education and practice to achieve the desired end, and at no time did I feel I was working at it.  I just felt happy in my dream world because there was no time or time limit when the desired affect would be accomplished. I imagined the world I wanted, but I was not creating it, since it was already here.   In the dream world everything is here now, you the dreamer are designing the world you want to participate in.

The word wish in the dictionary says: 1.) have or express a desire or aspiration for (wish for happiness) 2.) want or demand, so as to bring about what is wanted 3.) express one’s hope for.  The word dream in the dictionary says: 1.) a series of pictures or events in the mind of a sleeping person or a similar experience of one awake 2.) an ideal, aspiration, or ambition 3.) a beautiful or ideal person or thing.  In comparing the words, one is trying to obtain the desired object and the other is already there.

I think of my dream world where everything already is, a dream bank account in heaven, and in heaven, everything has already been created in the universal mind.  So when I go to my heavenly bank account I just withdraw what is needed.  One should withdraw small amounts at first, until one gets the hang of it.  The first thing I withdrew was peace of mind and it only took seconds and my withdrawal was in the present.  Through out the day if things took a turn, I just withdrew a little more, knowing my heavenly bank account would never run out.  The heavenly dream bank account will never need a bail out.  Once one achieves the little things, confidence will grow and anything is possible.  I know this to be true as each of my withdrawals has become more grandiose.  When one withdraws one’s desires don’t try to hold on to it, just allow the dream account to do its work.  It is like planting a seed; your initial work is done. 

How does one withdraw from one’s dream account with the planets in your natal chart?  By understanding the planets and how they react to each other and to which houses they are in will determine what direction you should be taking.  For example in my own chart Mercury (mind and intellect) is in Gemini (duality, versatility, light and dark) in the ninth house (higher thinking, expansion of horizons, inspirations, and ideas).  This aspect makes me very conscious of the meaning of words and in the context they are used.  That is one of the reasons I dislike using the words wish, create or visualize as it promotes the idea of a future manifestation of what is hoped for.  Dreaming it as an actuality makes it a reality. 

The planet Neptune (the mystic, the visionary, the principle of dissolving boundaries) in the first house gives me a head start in dreaming my own reality as long as I use the right words to germinate my hopes.  This gives you an idea of how to use the planets.  So let your imagination (Neptune) run wild and discover your own secret key which will open the doors to a better life.  I have used the planets Mercury and Neptune (a planet not used in Traditional Astrology) as I feel these are the two key planets in understanding our relationship with words and our imagination, and how they bring our wishes into reality. 

I have started you with some key words, but there are many more to be discovered and used on your road to a more fulfilling life.

Houses            Mercury                                             Neptune

First                 clever thinker                                      artistically sensitive intuitive

(I Am)

Second           resourceful and practical                 talent and abilities for self worth

(I Have)

Third               articulate and skillful                          inspired     imagination                             

(I Think)

Fourth             sensitive and emotional                    intuitive and instinctive

(I Feel)

Fifth                creative and playful                            romantic seduction

(I Show)

Sixth                cleverness in action                           sensitive to the now and the future

(I Combine)

Seventh           public intellectual exchange          kindred soul mates                             

(I Entrust)

Eighth             intuitive magical word power         psychic spiritual sexuality

(I Explore)

Ninth               higher education and travel             spiritual mystic on a journey

(I Believe)

Tenth               professional agility and delegation     the dream job (vocation)

(I Am Here)

Eleventh          sociable and entertaining                 sensitive and caring friends

(I Have Friends)

Twelfth           transcendental thinker                         nirvana hoped for and artistic

(I Dream)        (Thinking out of the box)

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