Skip to content

The Birth of a Movement

Earlier in the week, a friend documented the birth data for the Occupy Wall Street movement. According to a poster that was circulated announcing the event, the first protest was called for noon on September 17 in New York City. That’s good enough to cast a chart. Just what about this chart says “occupy”?

(Note Mercury at the top of the chart, the planet of messages and messengers in the house of corporations and governments. Many planets not shown in this rendering are aligned with Mercury — see the table below.)

The first thing that leaps off the page is Mercury, the messenger. Mercury is strong in this chart: placed in Virgo, one of the signs it rules, and being the most elevated planet in the chart. It is located, along with the Sun, in the 10th house of governments, the corporate system, and, in general, influence, reputation and fame.

It is little wonder that this movement has gone national so fast. This, despite Mercury and the Sun in a mutable sign; notably, the coverage took off after the Libra Equinox, with the Sun in a fast-moving cardinal sign and making aspects to Uranus, Pluto, and Saturn — the T-square that is defining our moment in history.

Mercury in the powerful 10th house translates to “speaking truth to power.” So far as I can see, whatever constitutes power is going to be getting the message. What happens as a result remains to be seen, but Occupy Wall Street is coming across in their boardrooms loud and clear. Mercury in Virgo is also about thoughtful, intellectual leadership in an era when one usually has to be an idiot to get on TV.

Contrary to the spin that this is a confused movement looking for a message, it is the embodiment of a message. In one month, the movement has re-framed the discussion about the economy. At the time of this little gathering, the national discussion was about why we could not pay to rebuild bridges in Vermont after Hurricane Irene. But how come we have trillions for bank bailouts and wars and executive bonuses? Now suddenly we’re talking about economic equity, job creation, single-payer healthcare, and putting the Glass-Stegall act back into place.

This chart also has a powerful 11th house, with Venus and Saturn, the two planets best placed in Libra, shining out. Venus and Saturn are great friends in this sign. So many people are sympathetic because they already understand the issue, or rather, they understand how all of the issues being raised by the protesters (the public) are related.

Yet, there’s another important factor: Mercury is hooked into a lot of energy coming from a group of minor planets in mid-Sagittarius. You may not be a fan of the minor planets, but this chart helps clarify how they work. Mercury at 14+ Virgo is picking up the energies of many of the subtle planets and a very large, not so subtle, point called The Great Attractor (see table below, with 90-degree sort focused on 14°+ mutable). The Great Attractor at the core of this chart helps us understand how this movement got so big so fast.

A few days before the first Occupy event, I wrote an article about the Pisces Full Moon, called The Chaos Generator. This was a strong Full Moon, and it too aligned with the cluster of minor planets in Sagittarius, but not as closely as Mercury, which nails it to a fraction of a degree, right at the moment of the first gathering. When you align a fast-moving planet with a group of slow-moving planets, you ramp up the power of the fast planet, giving it extra purpose and influence.

Here is a thought from that article: “The Pisces Full Moon also makes a square to the solar eclipse in Gemini earlier in the year (both are in mutable signs … this will add public resonance — eclipses have that sensation … it’s a potential turning point, which includes all of the themes associated with the planets in Sagittarius.”

Minor planets in the Occupy Wall Street chart, focused on 14+ degrees of the mutable signs (Gemini, Virgo, Sagittarius and Pisces) which function as one influence. Many planets are aligned with Mercury, the most powerful planet in the chart. Included in the alignment are Sappho, which brings people together, and Panacea, which is about far-reaching solutions. Ephemeris calculation from

I also pointed out the presence of the Great Attractor, located at 14+ Sagittarius, which was part of the aspect structure.  (1) “Whatever aspects the Great Attractor takes on part of the energy — especially a conjunction. People who have natal planets in aspect to the Great Attractor can have an odd kind of charisma, where they seem untouchable. It’s as if they have an invisible boundary around them that makes you keep your distance but want to get closer at the same time. The word attractor is used because everything is rushing toward it, but nothing can ever keep up.”

Continuing: “It can also have a magnifying effect on whatever is there, like a cosmic repeating station that might take the relatively subtle theme of a planet or asteroid and broadcast it outward. Remember, the Great Attractor is the mass of many thousands of galaxies; it’s positively enormous. Then things come along and line up with it, and that’s exactly what we have going on now.”

I concluded the article, “The simplest way to say this is that unless we take our political problems to a higher level, what you might call a spiritual level, we’re going to be caught in the same game endlessly. The issue is evolutionary. We might ask ourselves not about when we’re going to come up with a solution to our political problems, but rather to the problem of politics.”

An interesting factor about Occupy Wall Street is that it is being run as a collective. There are mass meetings, called general assemblies, that are held a couple of times a day. It is further organized into working groups that take on specific tasks, but there is no name or face associated with Occupy Wall Street. It does not have an ego identity and nobody is “claiming credit” for it. This is actually a reasonable first step in solving the problem of politics. Obviously, the absurd rules of the U.S. Senate have outlived their use; it’s dumb to allow one drunk politician to hold up progress for the whole country.

Each of us will influence how this unfolds with our choices. Leadership is now in plasma mode. This is a new mental environment for some and perfectly natural for others, but it’s the environment we are in. We are in a different universe than the ‘freaking out is mandatory’ environment of the post-9/11 decade. How we think and feel will contribute to the greater body of this thought movement. This is not merely a sit-in or series of protest marches, but an evolution of thought in a highly quickened psychic environment. I suggest you learn to navigate the energy. It’s lighter and requires more agility, and if you stay flexible, you can have a lot more fun.

(1) Editor’s note: From an earlier article by Eric Francis: “Among the many strange marvels of the sign that contains the galactic center is another galactic point called the Great Attractor, located at about Sagittarius 14 degrees and two minutes.”


Eric Francis is the editor of Planet Waves


  1. hi, eric!

    good post! i’d like to see more about the other minors in contact with mercury and what they bring to the table (no pun intended). i find that with panacea, there can also be a sense of ‘palliative,’ something soothing but not necessarily efficacious in the long run, which might speak to the overall effectiveness of the movement.

    also of note in the chart is asteroid america at 9 virgo, on the MC, conjunct mercury and exactly on a black hole, which could signal a dramatic overhaul (BH) of the country via a populist (mercury) movement.

    niobe exact on the ASC at 27 scorpio seems to reflect the self-centered, prideful, almost arrogant stance of the financial sector that caused the economic collapse, while centaur asbolus at 16 taurus, on the DSC and caput algol, is a sort of ‘the signs of the times’ symbol (asbolus was a centaur who divined the future thru patterns in the flight of birds) and the caput algol (medusa’s head) connection speaks to both a potential symbolic ‘decapitation’ of the wall street set’s political power as well as the ‘headless’ nature of the movement, in how they relate to each other (DSC).

    juno conjunct saturn seems significant, too, a sort of ‘in your face’ (with the conjunction) of the disempowered/juno with the established, entrenched powers/saturn. hopefully, it all goes somewhere positive!

  2. Great article Eric. I know you were there in the earlier days when this movement was just picking up steam and really got a personal feel for the energy it exuded.

    Since the nadir is in Pisces, the roots of the Occupy movement had no restrictrive boundry lines and everyone could be involved, no matter their age or race or political preference. As transiting Neptune was in the 3rd house and still close to America’s natal (Sibly) Moon probably contributed to the so-called lack of focus the media carped about for a while. Neptune does love to blur the picture doesn’t he? This too invited many more to participate since their specific beef could be ‘aired’ and still be within the general picture of unrest.

    This site loves minor planets and I know you are fond of the centaur Pholus, so his ‘small cause, big result’ reputation has to be foremost in your personal evaluation of this phenomenon. Could it be that one of the less obvious results of the Occupy movement will be a change in how ‘news’ reaches people due to his square to Mercury? During September there was little mention in the mainstream or cable television news of this event, yet now they report on it every day. I think we have Pholus and the GA to thank for that.

  3. I liked your statement that ‘Politics IS indeed the problem’. Do an article on just THAT! It must have lots of Neptune.

    • Thanks Eric!

  4. Here is a comment that I posted to Planet Waves this morning, apropos of our other coverage of Saturn opp Eris, apropos of our discussion here. –efc

    A Decade of Saturn Opposing the Outer Planets : Summary

    There is some background to this story. I am not sure where I wrote it out once before, but here is the short version. Saturn has been making a lot of oppositions to outer planets the past 10 years. By outer planets I mean in the classical sense — Uranus, Neptune and Pluto, which are all fairly close together in the sky, having made a series of conjunction sin the 1960s and 1990s. So Saturn opposed them one at a time between 2001 and 2010.

    First was 2001-2002 – 9/11 era – Saturn opp Pluto. First stolen election, false flag attacks, anthrax, National Security State consolidated, point of no return on corporate merger with government, start of Afgh and Irak wars. Solution to everything: duct tape and plastic wrap. (Three exact oppositions.)

    Then was Saturn opp Neptune – 2004-2008 – Hurricanes Katrina + Rita, second stolen election, economic slide, precursor to the bank crash. (Three exact oppositions with a very wide orb since it’s Neptune.)

    Then was Saturn opp Uranus – 2008-present – The economic crash, Obama election, pluralists v reactionaries, rise of the Tea Party, European banking crisis (Greece, Ireland, Spain, etc).

    Now we have Saturn opp Eris. I include Eris among the many, many objects existing in the region of space beyond Pluto because Eris qualifies as one of the ‘great’ outer planets, not a minor planet, in that it summed up all prior minor planet discoveries, defined an era of astronomy, and an era of history. This is making one exact opposition — TODAY. The influence seems to be distinctly personal as opposed to ‘historical’. But there is also a distinct era in history: withdrawal of GI troops from Irak, murder of bin Laden, and of Qadaffi and the rise of the Occupy Wall Street movement, awareness of the need for personal responsibility.

    While we are definitely still getting some effects of Saturn opposite Uranus, and the early effects of Uranus square Pluto (exact 2012-2015), this intense, even insane year (Tucson shootings, Fukushima, etc.) will teach us a lot about Eris because of the exact opposition from Saturn.

    The theme we’ve been developing the past two months about autonomy in relationships, personality chaos that cannot be answered by marriage or a partner, and many other themes, relate back to this aspect. It’s about an era in personal history that is defined by the idea of personal responsibility and standing up for what is right.

    Would love to hear more thoughts from astrologers or astrology students.


  5. Take a look at the Sabian Symbols along with the Sabian descriptions and key words for the degrees of the planets and AC/MC in this chart. They are very descriptive of OWS–it’s almost like a professional astrologer selected this time and date for the movement to begin!

  6. Thanks again Eric for giving us more perspective; it would seem Eris is not confining her discord to just us individuals, but to whole countries. This is probably seen and better understood by individuals though, when it applies to their government’s performance (or lack thereof).

    Add this to yesterday afternoon’s New Moon at 3+ Scorpio which was conjoined by asteroid Atlantis in the same degree, and all three conjoined the U.S. Sibly PROGRESSED Saturn at 3 Scorpio, America’s identity crisis is indeed an evolutionary marker.

    The US also has two progressed TNO’s conjunct at 15+ Virgo, so this Occupy movement is being fueled by the energy they represent and given form by the Occupation chart’s Mercury. Varuna whose name comes from a “Vedic diety of vast power, particulary the waters” per Phil Sedgwick, will have some emotional element to it’s expression and per Sedgwick, can be seen in such ceremonial events as ‘induced’ journeys as in shamanically led vision quests.

    The other TNO at 15+ Virgo in the U.S. progressed chart is Typhon, and well, isn’t a typhoon a big wind (Mercury) over water? All this being squared by the Moon’s nodes in Sag and Gemini and in the south bending (difficult to express, given as a gift), and then finally throw in the square to the GA. . there’s no doubt the “issue is evolutionary”.

    The thing about Atlantis the asteroid is that he has travelled all year with asteroid Juno and is only now starting to separate from her. I can’t help but feel that the equality and technology elements represented by these two transiting archetypes are important clues in how our evolution will play out. They were both conjunct the U.S. natal Sibly Saturn on September 11, 2011 at 14+ Libra. Otherwise, I’m afraid we Americans are left with a sinking feeling and a lot of outrage from being deceived.

  7. The chart I have is done for 6:38 AM and not noon so Mercury would not be on the MC but south node is on MC in Gemini.

  8. I like your article and especially about the Great Attractor, which I’d like to read more about.
    I myself am investigating Occupy Wall Street in connection with the progressions and Solar Arc Directions in the U.S. natal chart. I use the Laurie Efrein Chart (2:52:10 am July 4, 1776, Philadelphia) but most of what I have to say applies to all the July 4 charts.
    I think one of the main factors in the country’s destiny is the quindecile between the U.S. Sun and Pluto, an aspect of obsession publicised by Noel Tyl. Cutting across this quindecile at its near and far midpoints is the opposition, at 20 Aries and Libra, between Chiron and Juno, a disadvantaged group reaching out for recogntion as a full and equal partner, and being squashed by those who must be in total control.

  9. georgia,

    I’m glad I caught your comments here and find the idea of a quindecile between the U.S. Sun and Pluto interesting. I will look into this information myself, but assume it is about 166 degrees separation and am guessing it is part of the same family as the decile and quintile. F. Sakoian and L. Acker in their book “Minor Aspects” say this family of aspects is harmonic (division of the circle by 5,10 & 20) and related to the occult and the use of the will which could include obsession.

    Because it connects to the U.S. Juno-Chiron opposition, and since Saturn is still within a 2 degree orb of its recent conjunction to the natal Juno, the structure (disadvantaged group seeking equality) is very new. On January 9th a full moon (18 Cancer) at the same time of the last closest near-opposition between transiting Jupiter and Saturn for this cycle will no doubt be a testing of that structure. I will be watching for signs of that too.

  10. I think its important that astrologers in America remind themselves that this is a Global movement-
    – Occupy Everywhere!

    Occupy started in Spain with Los Indignados back in May.
    Occupy’s strength is in its universality and its anonymity.

    Rather than a parochial nationalistic approach i feel it would be truer astrological history to view the planetary patterns in a wider global context

    • Good point Marina…I do feel that many Americans astrologers are acutely aware of the global context..
      maybe I will address that in a future blog..

      Yes to Occupy Everywhere! (Some of my other favorite ideas: Occupy your heart, Occupy your Block)

      Thanks for commenting

  11. On a simple note:
    The beginning of the ‘tear-down’ of Zucotti Park at 1 am on Nov 15, the Sun at 22 30′ Scorpio, opposite the very strong Moon at 22 Taurus..the Moon is the people..the action has strengthened the movement..

Comments are closed for this article!