TMA This Week

2020 20/20: A Post-Election Analysis

By Alex Miller | November 11, 2020

They say hindsight is 20/20, but a judicious use of asteroids can provide quite a bit of foresight as well. I have written volumes about the 2020 U.S. presidential election over the past year using this lens, anticipating a Biden victory as long ago as his November 2019 solar return, and it seems now in the aftermath that a review of the most crucial determining factors is in order.

So here we go!

First, let’s talk about natal potential. Joe Biden has a close square from the Sun at 27° Scorpio to asteroid Whitehouse at 28° Aquarius, creating a strong personal pull to the presidency. (1) The office feels natural for him, as something innate and central to his core being, as witnessed by his two prior unsuccessful presidential bids.

In contrast, Donald Trump has an opposition from Whitehouse at 4° Capricorn to Mercury at 8° Cancer — it is his populist rhetoric that is the key to the Oval Office for him, but with Neptune at 5° Libra on the fulcrum of a t-square, Trump’s pronouncements aren’t always realistic, fact-based, straightforward or honest. (2) Fanatical zeal can also be a byproduct of Neptune, as seen in the unwavering devotion of his diehard supporters. An early warning sign that Trump’s time in office might be coming to an end was an exact solar eclipse conjunct Whitehouse (4° Capricorn) in December 2019, followed by a glancing blow from another in opposition at 0° Cancer in June 2020.

Then, solar returns for each candidate.

In November 2019 I was stunned to see in Biden’s solar return an exact conjunction of asteroids Nike and Victoria, named respectively for the Greek and Roman goddesses of victory, which conjoined the SR Ascendant and SR Moon, and squared the SR Sun. (3) This incredibly powerful and benefic configuration seemed to me to virtually guarantee the Democratic nomination, though I was less certain about the general election, occurring scant weeks before the 2019 SR expired. Additionally, SR Whitehouse at 15° Virgo conjoined the natal Midheaven at 19° Virgo, and squared natal Victoria at 19° Sagittarius, offering support for a successful presidential run. Looking ahead to the 2020 SR, which would govern the inaugural, I noted Whitehouse at 24° Scorpio conjunct the 27° Scorpio Sun, bringing home the potential of the natal square, locked in a t-square with SR asteroid Karma at 27° Leo, which argued for a fated resolution, and SR asteroid Troemper (for Trump) at 27° Taurus.

Trump’s June 2020 solar return was less helpful. The 22° Gemini Sun was enmeshed in a grand cross, with SR asteroid Karma conjoined, opposed by SR asteroid Hybris at 22° Sagittarius, squared by SR Whitehouse at 24° Virgo and a Mars/Neptune/Moon stellium at 20° and 25° Pisces (Mars exact with Neptune at 20°). This amounts to being called to account (Karma) by the people (Moon) for a virtually invisible (Neptune) response to an infectious disease (Mars); a loss of faith (Neptune) from an enraged (Mars) population (Moon) in his quest for the Oval Office (Whitehouse). Hybris is named for the Greek goddess of prideful arrogance, and it seemed to me that this was Trump’s Achilles heel (asteroid Achilles also appears in the Pisces mix at 26°), an inability to admit mistake and respond with humility to a clear failing.

That potential was obviously related to the COVID-19 crisis, which received an anemic response from the administration, which attempted to downplay its impact and severity. I have used asteroid Koronis as a celestial stand-in for coronavirus, closest match phonetically, with good results. In Trump’s birth chart, asteroid Koronis at 13° Capricorn opposes asteroid Nemesis, a point signifying downfall, undoing and ruin, at 16° Cancer.

Nemesis has been busy throughout Trump’s term in office, but he has thus far escaped serious consequences despite the clear threats from a combination of asteroids Mueller and Russia in square (the Mueller investigation into Russian collusion in the 2016 campaign) and asteroid Volodymyr conjoined it (the attempt to extort Ukrainian president Volodymyr Zelensky for manufactured dirt on Joe Biden, which led to his impeachment by the House of Representatives). It would take a global pandemic (Koronis) to take him down, bolstered by an exact lunar eclipse hit to Koronis (13° Capricorn) in July 2020, coinciding with one of the peak periods of COVID-19 spread in the US.

In Trump’s 2020 SR, Koronis appears at 16° Aries, in an exact t-square with natal Nemesis at 16° Cancer, also squared exactly by asteroid Josefa at 16° Libra, an asteroid representing Joe Biden. Josefa is also at station, having turned direct just five days before, making it an embedded factor in the coming year. This seemed likely to provide the coup de grace to the Trump presidency, and so it proved.

It was a heavy karmic period for Trump; in addition to the Sun/Karma conjunction in the SR, Trump’s exact natal pairing of Saturn and Karma at 23° Cancer had been stressed all year by the transiting Saturn/Pluto conjunction opposing it, a period of reckoning (Karma) in career matters (Saturn), potentially with devastating results (Pluto). By the time the election rolled around on November 3rd, transit Karma has moved to 23° Leo, broadly conjoining Trump’s natal 29° Leo Ascendant and squaring his natal MC/IC axis at 24° Taurus/Scorpio within a degree. It was time to pay the piper.

That brings us to Election Day itself….

..which showed a Yod, or Finger of Destiny, with asteroid Troemper (closest to Trump, which I have used effectively since his announcement of his candidacy in 2015) at 1° Gemini on the apex, inconjunct to an exact pairing of asteroids, i.e., Nemesis and NOT (a general disqualifier or symbol of blocked progress) at 2° Scorpio, and asteroid America with Icarus (recklessness, failure to heed good advice) at 3° and 1° Capricorn. That spells downfall and rejection (Nemesis/NOT) from the nation (America) for its rash (Icarus) commander-in-chief (Troemper). From 1° Gemini, Troemper also conjoined TNO Sedna at 28° Taurus, within orb of Trump’s natal MC at 24° Taurus, with Sedna — named for an Inuit goddess who dwells in the deepest, most inaccessible region of the Arctic Ocean — symbolizing isolation.

And, asteroid Bida (closest to Biden) at 6° Capricorn conjoined America in an ongoing extended conjunction which had been in effect since July, coaxing a strong identification of Biden with the country. This conjunction had been relevant throughout the most critical period of the campaign, from the nominating convention and final stages of the race through the debates and the election itself, allowing his countrymen to warm to the idea of a Biden presidency. This pairing lies at the fulcrum of a t-square with Venus at 7° Libra (representing support from women) and asteroid Truth at 7° Aries (highlighting Biden’s essential authenticity and genuineness). And in perhaps the clearest signal yet of a progressive victory at the polls, asteroid Demokritos (closest to Democrat) at 0° Scorpio conjoined asteroid Victoria at 1°, both within orb of Mercury, ruling the vote, at 25° Libra.

Also, the Biden/Harris ticket had locked up the energies of the ongoing Capricorn stellium, which it bookended and corralled to its purpose, with asteroid Camillo (Kamala) at 19° Capricorn leading off the parade, followed by Jupiter (expansion and increase) at 21°; Pluto (transformation and empowerment) at 22°; Saturn (the presidency itself) at 26° and asteroid Josephina (Joseph) at 28° Capricorn ending the procession, all squared Mercury (25° Libra).

This seemed to me to point clearly to a Biden win in the popular vote, but as 2016 showed, with the Electoral College system, there’s plenty a slip ‘twixt the cup and the lip, and it was possible to lose the presidency despite leading by millions of votes; Donald Trump might somehow pull another rabbit out of the election hat. But that particular history was not to repeat itself.

In a final act of cosmic irony, both the chart for the calling of Pennsylvania and the presidency for Joe Biden (by both the AP and NBC News at 11:25 a.m. EST, November 7, 2020) and Biden’s victory speech that night (8:40 p.m. EST in Wilmington) show angles which are conjunct Donald Trump’s natal Nemesis (exact on the Descendant for the call and one degree shy of the Ascendant for the speech).

Divine justice had caught up with Donald Trump at last.


(1) Joe Biden: November 20, 1942, 8:30 a.m. EWT, Scranton PA; Rodden rating A.

(2) Donald J. Trump; June 14,1946; 10:54 AM EDT; Jamaica, N.Y., Rodden AA.

(3) See Alex’s article on Biden’s 2019 solar return.

Bio: Alex Miller is a professional writer and astrologer, specializing in deep space points and minor bodies of the solar system. A past president of Philadelphia Astrological Society and currently a member of the board for the Philadelphia chapter of NCGR, Alex is the author of The Black Hole Book, detailing the use of black holes in astrological interpretation, and Cat o’ Nine Tales, a memoir of his cat rescue work. He has been chronicling the effects of asteroids and other minor bodies since 2005, much of which can be found at his website: alexasteroidastrology. Alex can be reached at

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Election 2020: an astrological moving picture

By Raye Robertson | October 21, 2020

Americans may be experiencing peak polarity in their viewpoints these days, but I bet most of us can agree that this state of maximum divisiveness didn’t happen overnight, and it wasn’t accidental. In fact, it seems that our present situation evolved in fits and starts over an extended period, and there were both nebulous and well-defined forces promoting these deeper divisions, for the sake of their own power and influence.

One consequence of all this is that issues that should be prioritized by the country have not been. Another consequence is that U.S. presidential elections have become progressively more chaotic over the past two decades, a trend that this article will discuss in light of the dawn chart for Election Day on this November 3rd.

Various mundane astrologers in the past have suggested measurements we can take to understand the prevailing tone of our times, and to glean how that tone may oscillate over its entire trajectory. Such useful information can be found by calculating the “cyclical index” of a given year, or even a string of years. For example, by following this information, compiled from all ten outer planetary cycles over the entire length of Jupiter-Saturn cycle, about 20 years (as I’ve done here), we can better understand the overall astro-social “climate” of those years.

In their classic work, Mundane Astrology, Baigent, Campion and Harvey (BCH) cite the methods André Barbault and Claude Ganeau promoted to calculate the cyclical index. While very similar, I’ve employed Ganeau’s technique here, which I find more accessible. He explains it pretty clearly in the following, from BCH: (1)

“The stability or instability of the world is directly related to the difference in the sum of the phases of all waxing cycles of the five outer planets, and the sum of the phases of waning cycles of planets. Whilst the resultant figure remains positive, the earth will tend to experience relative stability and a period of evolution; when the resultant figure is negative, the earth enters a period of crisis and involution.”

Obviously, a bit of algebraic math is called for here, but nothing difficult. I applied this technique to the years 2000-2020 — the span, roughly, of the Jupiter-Saturn cycle that is within a month or so of completion at this point (exact on December 21st). The results are somewhat stunning — certainly affirming the increasingly difficult tone of events on the ground since that critical turn of the 21st century.

To obtain the following numerical values, I cast charts for January 1st of each year between 2000 and 2020, and I did the calculations Ganeau calls for in each one. Detailed below are the numerical values I obtained in that process — notice that some are positive, some are negative, and that there’s an obvious trend towards increasing negativity over the years:

2000: +240; 2001: +890; 2002: +652; 2003:-1; 2004: -81; 2005: -22; 2006: -42; 2007: -907; 2008: -604; 2009: -806; 2010: -660; 2011: -637; 2012: -549; 2013: -494; 2014: -804; 2015: -816; 2016: -1220; 2017: -1645; 2018: -1748; 2019: -1846; 2020: -1946.

Note that the trend we can see in the bold numbers above is inextricably related to the number and “weight” of the waxing and waning cycles in play in any given year. Waning cycles tend to be “heavy” because the angular distance numbers between any two given outer planets (Jupiter, Saturn, Uranus, Neptune, Pluto) will fall between 180.01° and 359.59°, so subtracting these figures from the smaller numbers produced by waxing cycles (0°-179.79°) often produces a negative difference.

Simply put, years in which there are several waxing cycles (see tabulations below) tend to produce positive numbers, and years in which there are several waning cycles tend to produce negative numbers. Not to be overlooked, there will be years in which strong positive numbers are flattened out somewhat by just a couple of deeply waning cycles. This could be cycles very near completion, measuring in the 300°+ range — probably indicating a transition point of some kind. Here’s how the balance of waxing (wx) to waning (wn) cycles broke down during the years 2000-2020 (again, calculated for January 1st of each year):

2000: 9 wx, 1 wn; 2001: 10 wx, 0 wn; 2002: 9 wx, 1 wn; 2003: 7 wx, 3 wn; 2004: 6 wx, 4 wn; 2005: 6 wx, 4 wn; 2006: 6 wx, 4 wn; 2007: 5 wx, 5 wn; 2008: 6 wx, 4 wn; 2009: 5 wx, 5 wn; 2010: 6 wx, 4 wn; 2011: 6 wx, 4 wn; 2012: 6 wx, 4 wn; 2013: 6 wx, 4 wn; 2014: 5 wx, 5 wn; 2015: 5 wx, 5 wn; 2016: 4 wx, 6 wn; 2017: 3 wx, 7 wn; 2018: 3 wx, 7 wn; 2019: 3 wx, 7 wn; 2020: 3 wx, 7 wn.

I bring all this up because it speaks to the cascading negativity we’ve been experiencing on so many levels leading into this 2020 election, and while it’s beyond the scope of this piece to analyze all the ups and downs, we can certainly flag a few key moments between 2000 and 2020 that seem really well-represented in the numbers.

For instance, 2007 was a turning point in which a slightly negative number (-42 in 2006) all of a sudden dropped precipitously — certainly a reflection of the Wall Street/Housing crash that ensued between 2007-08 and eventually impacted the entire world. The slowness of that recovery (for everyday people, not the banks) is certainly seen in the 2009-2012 range, when the numbers remained fairly consistent, yet stubbornly negative.

Of course, the 2016 election was considered by many a new low — yet another election (like Bush v. Gore) in which the person winning the popular vote did not become the president, and the numbers absolutely reflect that uniquely negative moment, with four years of seriously cascading lows to follow. Of course, the onset of a major pandemic in an already tense U.S. election year explains how horribly the numbers have bottomed out to an abysmal -1946 for the U.S., but the entire world is experiencing these cyclical numbers, so the potential for widespread misery has been very real.

Notice that the balance between waxing and waning cycles has been firmly weighted towards the waning side during the 2016-2020 period, but because I made all these calculations for January 1st of the respective years, what we’re not seeing here is that two major cycles completed in early 2020. This means two more cycles are now waxing than was the case on January 1st, and of course, another new cycle will be waxing by the end of the year when Jupiter and Saturn come together for their new cycle at 0°+Aquarius in December. When Jupiter conjoined Pluto in April, the new number reflecting that new balance of 5 waxing and 5 waning cycles became -1288.56. Yes, a bit of a lift from the number on January 1st (-1946 ) but still deeply negative. Importantly, the 5/5 balance of waxing and waning cycles underlying this new number affirms that we are now experiencing a critical turning point.

All of this is a useful backdrop for fully appreciating what’s going on in the November 3rd chart for Election Day 2020, cast for dawn in Washington, D.C. Let’s focus in on some key highlights.

Chart #1

Election Day 2020 – a moving day

Since this is a dawn chart, the Sun is naturally rising at the Ascendant, here in Scorpio (where it tends to mostly be in early November for charts set in Washington D.C.). So Mars and Pluto rule the day, and they happen to be forming a wide square between Aries and Capricorn — perhaps a reflection of the tension inherent in this all-important election? (I will look at the larger array of aspects further down.) Returning to the chart horizon, it’s perhaps interesting that Uranus has just set below the Descendant by roughly two degrees, at 8°+Taurus.

This means that in the course of this daylong event (as the wheel turns ever clockwise), Uranian shocks or surprises (the force of change, in one way or another) may be felt throughout the lower sector of the chart — by workers and public servants (6th), by local influencers (5th, representatives), by the “grassroots” (4th), by local public institutions (3rd), by financial institutions (especially in so far as they assign values to resources and investments (2nd), and to the nation’s identity and self-image (1st). * [See Editor’s note below for further explication of the author’s house designations.] The bottom line, Uranus could well set the tone for the day with a Taurean focus on economic issues and changes needed in that arena. Uranus’s placement in earthy Taurus should also contain this planet’s “shock” value a bit — more on the key relationship between Uranus and its dispositor Venus below.

Chart #2

By the time the polls close at 8 p.m. across the nation (using Los Angeles, CA as a western reference point), Uranus will have circled up and over the Ascendant and landed in the 11th house which it naturally rules, and the house that especially pertains to political associations and activities. It will at that point form a quincunx (or inconjunct) with dispositor Venus (Libra), which will, when the polls close, sit in the 4th house, directly opposite Chiron in Aries, elevated in the 10th. To my eye, this suggests a “blessing” on the grassroots and on the frustrating road it will have traveled by the end of this Election Day. Martin Lass points to the potential for transformative, healing paths opening up with this quincunx also a hopeful take away from the day, perhaps. For now, let’s return our attention to what the chart looks like at dawn. (2) (see chart #1).

There are two key t-squares shooting through the heart of this chart that seem to tell the story: first, Neptune’s square from Pisces to the Gemini-Sagittarius nodal axis, and second, the multiple t-squares created between Pallas-Jupiter-Pluto-Saturn in Capricorn square Mercury in Libra’s opposition to Eris and (more widely) Mars in Aries. Some of the Mars aspects included here exceed normal orbs, but as co-ruler of the chart, strong in home sign Aries, and dispositor of that disruptive Eris, Mars shouldn’t be underestimated.

We’ll consider these two significant t-squares individually, but I think it’s equally important to consider how they will play off each other: the volatile drive, activity and will-to-power and justice (Pallas) signaled by the cardinal t-squares will provide the fuel for the nodal axis trend towards mutable instability across the collective. We’ve been living with this unstable trend and some of the t-squares since the summer months, but it’s significant in chart #1 that Mercury (Libra) disposes the Gemini North Node, and Jupiter (not at its best in Saturnian Capricorn) disposes the Sagittarius South Node, essentially linking the mutable and cardinal t-squares in this chart.

The tone of the power drives we see in motion here is unfortunately still caught up in the negative waning energies of the Jupiter-Saturn cycle — both planets have already begun new, separate cycles with Pluto, as discussed earlier, so the will to power embodied in those cycles is strong here, but the socio-political framework for putting that power to constructive use over the coming decades is sadly debilitated and corrupt. As Mark 2:22 put it, “And no one puts new wine into old wineskins. For the wine would burst the wineskins, and the wine and the skins would both be lost.” Energies need an outlet and a form that will channel them productively, or they come to little good.

To my mind, that says about all we need to know about the Mars-Eris conjunction and its volatile role in the cardinal t-squares on Election Day. Trump’s persistent narrative that claims the election can’t possibly be legitimate unless he wins has already incited his volatile militia-style supporters to action (more on this ahead) — a dynamic that’s reflected pretty clearly in the Mercury-to-Mars-Eris oppositions here.

In addition, Trump’s “official” sanctioning of such a dangerous narrative can be seen in the Capricorn stellium — all proceeding here in direct motion after months of retrogrades (and happening to fall opposite his natal Saturn-Venus in Cancer ), but astrologically, this situation is not unique. (3)

In fact, when the first shots were fired in the U.S. Civil War in April, 1861, the 1842 Jupiter-Saturn cycle (a Capricorn cycle, significantly) was deep into its waning days, with all the other outer planetary cycles waxing. So there was an overwhelming amount of pent up energy, looking for a social/governmental outlet that was not prepared for the challenges. This was, of course, a situation that allowed the Confederacy to severely test the structural integrity (Saturn) and sovereignty (Jupiter) of the nation, in defense of “state sovereignty” and slavery.

Many would probably argue that the Civil War was a fissure that has yet to be fully healed, and clearly, it’s a fissure that has resurfaced with a vengeance during the waning days of today’s Mars-and-Eris challenged Jupiter-Saturn cycle. This time around we have extremist militia groups (many of whom are openly anti-government and present themselves as latter-day Confederates, in fact). Their stated and demonstrated intentions (see Michigan’s unfortunate recent experience with them here) have led the FBI to regard them as domestic terrorists. The bottom line — they have lots of pent-up, pandemic-driven frustrations and grievances, and they’re armed to their teeth.

Interestingly, when the first cases of COVID-19 in the U.S. were revealed in January, the nodal axis spanned 8°+ Cancer-Capricorn, perhaps picking up on the energies of the 1842 Jupiter-Saturn cycle (launched at 8°+ Capricorn) that ended with a Civil War bang. In Michigan, at least, the governor’s efforts to keep people safe by shutting things down inspired a lot of the violent backlash we’ve been seeing. On April 12, 1861 (the outbreak of Civil War hostilities), the nodal axis bridged 17°+ Capricorn-Cancer. Flashing forward, this Capricorn point is now being transited by the Election Day combination of Pallas-Jupiter-Pluto-Saturn. Calls for a “new civil war” are common with militias and hate groups, and I would say (a story for another day) that astrologically, things definitely can get worse if we don’t take the warning signs all around us seriously.

Even so, despite the volatile cardinal t-squares and the troubling historical precedents, this Election Day 2020 chart contains five waxing cycles and five waning cycles, which will hopefully allow a bit of balance in the way we experience the election. (4) This, despite clear efforts by Trump and company to upset the apple cart, instill fear about voting and to undermine the results before they’re even tallied. Early indications are that people are determined to vote, no matter what.

Despite that determination, however, all this volatility will continue to fuel the instability inherent in the Election Day mutable nodal axis, but when the confetti and balloons settle to the ground and the polls close at 8 p.m. on November 3rd, the North Node will have led its axis around the lower hemisphere, will have stirred up the grassroots and crossed over the Ascendant into the 12th and 6th houses, where it actually feels oddly appropriate, with North Node conjunct the Moon, the People. (See chart #2).

Remember that all this is happening with Neptune square the nodal axis: We the People (Moon) will undoubtedly feel exhausted, mentally depleted and stressed (12th) by the end of that day — many will have experienced efforts to suppress their votes and/or to confuse them into voting against their own interests. I can only imagine that everyone will feel relieved that it’s over — I know I will, as a poll worker! As ready as we will all be for the end of it, however, the absentee votes won’t even be counted in most states by that time, so the wait for firm results will be on.

Final thoughts

I started this exploration by citing cyclical index numbers that showed 2020 numbers at the bottom of a very steep decline into negative territory. As new cycles have launched, of course, the numbers have rebounded slightly, and this will improve even further when Jupiter and Saturn conjoin in Aquarius on December 21st and open the way for the first Air-sign synod (series of cycles in one element) since the 1500s. Bottom line, this election is only the beginning of a very daunting, but exciting period for humanity on this planet, and I pray that the amazing amount of energy people have been putting into this election will be matched by our dedication to what comes next. A new president can make a difference (heaven knows this is important), but there’s no legislating collective dedication, open-heartedness, generosity and loving kindness — for nature, as well as for our fellow travelers on this planet.

With that, I would suggest that we have a chance in the coming Jupiter-Saturn cycle to apply a new wave of technologically-enhanced human ingenuity towards solving humanity’s most urgent problems, and there is not a moment to spare for denial — a sad distortion of the human Spirit. There is also not a moment for hesitation.


(1) Michael Baigent, Nicholas Campion and Charles Harvey, Mundane Astrology: An Introduction to the astrology of nations and groups, Thorsons Publishing, London, 1995, p. 174.
(2) Martin Lass, Musings of a Rogue Comet: Chiron, Planet of Healing, Galactic Publications, Nyack, NY, 2001, p. 384.
(3) Donald J. Trump birth data: June 14, 1946, 10:54 a.m. DST, Jamaica, NY. Rated AA: BC/BR.
(4) The Jupiter-Pluto cycle launched anew in April, 2020, so even though Jupiter retrograded back over Pluto over some months, I’m considering it a waxing cycle here.

Editor’s note:
The author attributes “local influencers” to the 5th, those “so often wield local political power. Not the big national politicians, but they wield power through their local stature.” Referring to the 3rd as “local institutions,” Raye finds “key public/community institutions like education, public safety and transportation that are governed on the local level by public servants living in the neighborhood, more than those on the national level.”

Bio: Raye Robertson is a practicing astrologer, writer and former educator. A graduate of the Faculty of Astrological Studies (U.K.), Raye focuses on mundane, collective-oriented astrology, with a particular interest in current affairs, culture and media, the astrology of generations, and public concerns such as education and health. Several of her articles on these topics have been featured in The Mountain Astrologer, UK’s Astrological Journal and other publications over the years; see the Publication link on her blog, at Diary of a Mundane Astrologer for two recent publications, now available as e-books on Amazon. Contact

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The Cluster Effect: When Planetary Triggers Converge

By Ray Grasse | October 7, 2020

This blog has been excerpted from the author’s latest book StarGates: Essays on Astrology, Symbolism, and the Synchronistic Universe.

In October 1991 a confluence of three weather systems occurred off the coast of Nova Scotia which was so violent it produced waves over 100 feet high, resulting in the deaths of over a dozen people. It was such a rare convergence of forces that meteorologists came to call it “the perfect storm,” with the event eventually becoming immortalized in Sebastian Junger’s 1991 book of the same name, and later, a 2000 film starring George Clooney and Mark Walberg.

As astrologers, we carefully chart the celestial “weather” at any given time, and it goes without saying that some periods are more highly charged, active, or turbulent than others — astrological “perfect storms,” you might say. One of several possible reasons for this is that multiple planetary or zodiacal triggers will sometimes converge to pool their energies around the same time, leading to what I’ve sometimes called a “cluster” effect.

Over the years I’ve found such clustering times can be hugely significant factors in our lives, for better or worse. A simple example would be my client whose chart showed a Mars return firing on the exact same day as transiting Uranus squaring his Sun, with both of those happening near a Full Moon. Since this took place shortly before he came to me, I naturally asked if anything significant happened around that time. He said he had a huge blow-up with his boss at that point, which in turn led to him getting fired — hence his reason for looking to an astrologer to get some explanation as to what happened. It was a perfect storm of stressful planetary triggers, that was obvious, and I’d like to believe that knowing about it in advance might have helped him cope with those turbulent energies better than he actually did.

Another example of clustering involved a female client of mine whose horoscope showed transiting Saturn coming up to conjunct her natal Moon within two days of her progressed Moon squaring her natal Saturn. There was no way to know for sure what that would bring, but I could at least let her know this could be an emotionally challenging time and would most likely somehow involve her home or family. It turned out that her mother fell gravely ill that week and had to be rushed to the hospital, where she passed away several days later. While knowing those astrological triggers ahead of time certainly didn’t erase the pain of losing her mother, it at least helped her emotionally brace for what was coming, rather than simply feeling sucker-punched by fate.

To be sure, the cluster effect isn’t always a negative thing — a proverbial clusterf*%k, as some call it. Take the case of my friend who experienced Jupiter trining his natal Venus just as a progressed Venus trined his natal Jupiter. What happened? That was exactly when he was in Las Vegas making a killing at the gambling tables! It was a “perfect storm,” all right, but one involving quite pleasant forces coming together.

Another example of “positive” clustering was my client who had Uranus trining his 10th house Sun precisely as Jupiter was crossing over his Midheaven. It was then that he landed a plum job as a news anchor for a local news station. Clusters like these can be approached as windows of opportunity we can take advantage of, and maximize to their fullest potentials, if we put our mind to it.

Clusters We All Share

The point here is that in all these cases it wasn’t just a single celestial trigger involved but multiple factors occurring around the same time, which combined to trigger significant life changes. In a more general way, it’s much the same principle during those times in all our lives when similar transits converge at similar ages.

One of the most notable of these occurs between the ages of 20 and 22 when we all experience a combination of Uranus squaring its natal position, and Saturn squaring its natal position too. This famously causes considerable tension for many, as it is a time when we’re trying to reconcile the urge to break free and “find ourselves” with the heavy weight of parental conditioning and youthful insecurities.

Another well-known cluster occurs between the ages of 27 and 30 when all of us experience the combined effects of our first progressed lunar return followed shortly by our first Saturn return, as well as transiting Uranus trining its natal position and Neptune sextiling its natal position. This is generally a time of intense personal reflection and re-evaluation, and often involves a struggle between contrasting feelings of aspiration and disillusion. As one friend of mine put it, “This was when I had to grow up, and realized I had to start acting like an adult.” Although some use the energies of this time to their professional or creative advantage, others find it a bit more than they can really handle — something sadly illustrated by the early deaths of so many rock and pop stars around this age, such as Jimi Hendrix, Jim Morrison, Janis Joplin, Amy Winehouse, Brian Jones, and Kurt Cobain, among others. It’s a formative time for many, but not always a very comfortable one.

Another such clustering takes place during our early to mid 40s, when we experience a major convergence of slow-moving transits which include Uranus opposing natal Uranus, Saturn opposing natal Saturn, and Neptune squaring natal Neptune. As with our previous clusters, the cumulative power of this one makes the early 40s a particularly vulnerable time for some, one often associated with the dreaded “mid-life crisis” when we become more aware of fading youth alongside the looming specter of old(er) age. Similar to those earlier transition points, one may feel torn between the growing urge to “find oneself” and the obligation to deal with responsibilities and existing routines. In my own case, this was a time of extraordinarily mixed emotions, since I was struggling with the need to break free of problematic situations in my professional and personal life exactly as I was experiencing some important creative breakthroughs as well. (Among other things, this was when my first book was published.)

Especially notable are those times when such “universal” clusterings coincide with other major transits or progressions in one’s chart, as if to suggest particularly significant transition points in life. Just a week before starting this article, for instance, I had a woman in her early 40s come to me who was undergoing the abovementioned cluster of Uranian, Neptunian, and Saturnian energies, on top of which she was also contending with such heavy-hitter transits as the recent Pluto–Saturn conjunction sitting exactly on her Midheaven, which was in turn closely squaring her Sun — in addition to which transiting Uranus was conjunct her Taurus Ascendant. Now, that’s a full plate!

What happened? She had been a psychologist teaching at a university who became so frustrated by the politics and bureaucratic machinations of her department that she finally resigned, which sent her into an occupational freefall that had her wondering what her next step would be. Fortunately, her natal chart showed some harmonious and constructive aspects between some of those same planets (in particular, she had a tight natal trine between Saturn and the Sun), so I suggested this period was really about a radical reconstruction of her life, a professional “course correction” she could use to regroup and reconnect with the core dreams and creative aspirations that motivated her earlier in life. In addition to having dreamt of being a writer when she was young, she had recently begun thinking of starting her own business. Her new occupational status was giving her an opportunity to seriously consider both those options.

The Cluster Effect in Mundane Affairs

It’s also worth recalling the way this clustering phenomenon manifests on the collective level, too, where we find it at work behind some important historic developments. A dramatic example of that took place during the first week of February 1962 when a rare stellium of seven celestial bodies in the (tropical) Aquarius coincided precisely with a total solar eclipse in that sign. As I mentioned earlier in this book, the full significance of stelliums is rarely felt at the exact time of their occurrence, and can then exert powerful ripple effects for weeks, months, sometimes even decades afterwards. While there were some important political developments during that period — most notably a particularly tense stand-off between the US and Russia later that year with the Cuban Missile Crisis — it inaugurated a particularly fertile time in the arts. Not only did Bob Dylan release his first album just a few weeks later, but the next few months saw the Rolling Stones play their first live show, the Beatles record their first record (Love Me Do), and the Beach Boys signing their hugely successful contract with Capitol Records.

Another extraordinary confluence of energies which I mentioned previously occurred in 1941, during the last few days of April and the first few days of May. Not only did Uranus exactly conjunct Jupiter — a combination frequently associated with cultural breakthroughs — but both planets exactly trined Neptune right then, and all of this happened in connection with a powerhouse stellium in Taurus involving the Sun, Mercury, Venus, Saturn, Jupiter and Uranus. Now, that’s a cluster! As it so happened, May 1st saw the world premiere of a film often called the greatest in movie history, Citizen Kane, and musical icon Bob Dylan was born just three weeks later.

Another potent form of “clustering” on the mundane level occurs when two or more planets become stationary and change directions close to one another. As I discussed in my essay “Tectonic Triggers,” station points aren’t simply a matter of planets changing directions, but about the energies of those planets becoming exponentially amplified at such times, due to the “branding iron” effect of them being relatively motionless for so long.

One example of that took place in the spring of 1967. The Beatles’s album Sgt. Pepper’s Lonely Hearts Club Band is widely considered one of that decade’s cultural milestones and was formally released on May 26th of that year. On several occasions I’ve seen astrologers trying to understand the significance of this album by erecting a horoscope for that one day. But what that type of “snapshot” approach to historic events overlooks is the fact that this album came out in the midst of a triple station of Uranus, Pluto, and Mars — the first two of those planets being widely regarded as those bodies most responsible for the revolutionary winds of change which swept through that decade. Mars was stationing direct on May 26, Uranus on May 28, and Pluto on May 29. Mundane astrologers often look to the exact conjunction of those last two bodies in 1965 and 1966 as the primary dates of their influence; but I’d suggest that the proximity of those stations in late May of 1967 virtually constitutes another “conjunction” — a “stationary conjunction” of sorts — exerting much the same effect. (It’s also worth noting that musician Noel Gallagher was born on May 29th that year and went on to front the English rock group Oasis, a band hailed by some fans and critics at the time as the “musical heirs to the Beatles.” A passing of the archetypal torch?)

A more tragic example of clustered station points happened in July 2014, when Saturn and Uranus changed directions slightly more than 24-hours of one another: Saturn stationed direct on July 20th, and Uranus stationed retrograde on July 21st. Over the years I’ve found these two planets to be particularly involved with notable aviation disasters, including the deadliest one in history: the 1977 Tenerife disaster in the Canary Islands. That tragedy occurred on March 27th when two passenger jets collided on a runway and 583 men, women, and children perished. This happened as Saturn and Uranus were in within a degree of the exact square of February 23rd. It all led me to wonder if we might also see some similar aviation problems in July 2014, since these two planets would be amplified to an extraordinary degree then.

As it turned out, the few days surrounding that double station witnessed several aviation tragedies: Malaysia Airlines Flight 17 was shot down in eastern Ukraine, killing all 298 passengers; two Ukrainian fighter jets were shot down; a Taiwanese jet crashed; and an Algerian passenger jet went missing — four aviation disasters, all within just a few days. But that’s not all: the Israeli–Palestinian conflict heated up dramatically at that point, and due to rising tensions between Russia and the U.S. at the time some media commentators started comparing the events of that week to those which ignited World War I. For me, one of the key takeaways from events like these is that joint stations can be interpreted in much the same way as conjunctions involving those same bodies.

A remarkable cluster occurred recently during the second week of January 2020, when several powerful triggers converged close to one another. In addition to the epic Saturn–Pluto conjunction astrologers had been speculating about for years, there was a Full Moon eclipse, a Uranus station, and even a retrograde station of the dwarf planet Eris — all within just a 48-hour period. So, what happened?

Keeping in mind that it’s important to examine the days, weeks, or even months surrounding any major cluster, there are quite a few things worth noting here. This period saw the heating up of Donald Trump’s impeachment problems as the formal Senate trial of the President began just over a week later, on January 21st. This was also an exceptionally tense time for international relations, with America stepping close to the brink of world war after Trump assassinated Iranian general Soleimani on January 3rd and Iran responded on January 8th by sending missiles against a US military base in Iraq. Hours after that attack, a Ukrainian jet crashed shortly after takeoff from Tehran’s main airport, killing all 176 passengers. During this period there were also major earthquakes in Puerto Rico and Iran, as well as volcanic eruptions in the Philippines, Japan, and Mexico. In the days immediately leading up to this cluster the British royal family was rocked by news of Prince Harry and wife Megan Markle’s decision to relinquish their royal duties to pursue a life of greater self-determination; while that may be of little consequence to non-British subjects, it symbolically represented yet another break with the traditional order of things in terms of global affairs.

But perhaps most significant of all, in the weeks immediately following this cluster, media outlets started broadcasting news of a deadly strain of coronavirus out of Wuhan, China, which apparently began in December but only came to light globally in January and continued spreading in the months afterward. As I’ve pointed out in the past, the full effects of any major planetary pattern aren’t often completely known until long after that pattern fires exactly. For instance, the last time Pluto and Saturn came together exactly was back in late 1982 , and its effects arguably were felt throughout that entire decade, through such developments as the AIDS crisis and the so-called Reagan Revolution in the US, among others. The fact that this particular Saturn–Pluto conjunction was punctuated by several other celestial triggers would certainly seem to amplify the long-term influence it could hold for the world.

All of this naturally piques one’s curiosity as to what celestial clusters might lie ahead for us. As of this writing (February 2020), one of the more interesting of those is set to happen around December 21st of this year. Besides this being the date of the winter solstice, it will also be when Saturn and Jupiter precisely conjunct for the first time in 20 years, at 0°Aquarius this time (an elemental shift from their last conjunction in earth to a new domicile in air). In addition to that, though, this is precisely when Mars in Aries will be forming a tight square to the epic Saturn–Pluto conjunction from January 2020 at 22° Capricorn, serving as a trigger to that pattern as well. The fact that three major triggers will occur less than two months after the U.S. presidential election naturally leads one to wonder whether the impact of those celestial markers will somehow involve fallout from that political event — a “perfect storm” of political proportions, maybe? It’s also worth pointing out that transiting Pluto will be opposing Donald Trump’s Saturn at precisely this same time (exact on December 20th). One way or another, it’s not likely to be boring.

© 2020 Ray Grasse – all rights reserved

Bio: Ray Grasse is associate editor of The Mountain Astrologer and author of several books, including The Waking Dream, Signs of the Times, Under a Sacred Sky, An Infinity of Gods, Urban Mystic and the recently published StarGates: Essays on Astrology, Symbolism, and the Synchronistic Universe. His website is

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Revisiting Venus and Mars

By Mary Plumb | September 27, 2020

(Editor’s note: We posted a version of this blog about Paul McCartney in October 2011 and were inspired to re-visit it by a lovely synchronicity: On August 25, with the transiting North Node at 26° Gemini — conjunct Paul’s Sun which is exactly on his Venus-Mars midpoint — we received an email from an editor doing research on his life. She alerted us to a newly published comprehensive guide on how to play like Paul McCartney on Beginner Guitar HQ. Read it here: How to Play Bass Guitar like Paul McCartney. This is also posted as transiting Venus is trine Mars. All in all, it seems to be a perfect reminder that Venus and Mars are ever present, and the music of the spheres surrounds us all. Please enjoy the astrology and the music.)

Paul McCartney married Nancy Shevell on Sunday, October 9, 2011, at the Olde Marylebone Town Hall in London, the same location of his wedding to Linda Eastman in 1969. (After a famously close and happy marriage, Linda died in 1998.)

We have recorded times for Paul and Linda and I’m going to start with the angular connections (and eclipse patterns) between their horoscopes.
Inner wheel: Paul McCartney
June 18, 1942
2 p.m. BDST Liverpool, England (53N25, 2W55)
Outer wheel: Linda McCartney
Sept. 24, 1941
10 a.m. EDT New York, NY (40N31, 74W00)
Placidus houses, true node (both Rodden A rating)

There are significant planetary connections to the all-important angles between the natal charts: Her Jupiter (21° Gemini) is conjunct his MC (24°); her nodal axis (22° Virgo-Pisces) crosses his Ascendant/Descendant (25° Virgo-Pisces); his Moon (17° Leo) is conjunct her MC (16° Leo), and his Juno, asteroid of marriage (7°48’ Scorpio), is conjunct her Ascendant (8°42’ Scorpio).

They married on March 12, 1969. (1) There was a solar eclipse on March 18 at 27° Pisces, conjunct his Descendant and triggering both of their prenatal solar eclipse (PNSE) degrees. (2)

Linda was born on September 24, 1941, a few days after a solar eclipse (September 21). Her PNSE is 27°47′ Virgo, precisely conjunct his Neptune (27°07’), ruler of his Pisces 7th-house cusp.

Paul’s PNSE is 25°45′ Pisces, exactly on his Descendant, placing unusual emphasis on the striking importance of partnerships of all kinds in his life. (3) (Remember the Beatles?)

Linda died on April 17, 1998. There was a Full Moon eclipse on March 13 at 22°23’ Virgo conjunct his Ascendant/Descendant (and square the MC/IC) and her nodal axis (22° Virgo/Pisces).

In 2002 Paul married Heather Mills, a marriage that ended with a very messy divorce in 2008. I have used a sunrise chart for her, as there is no birth time. (4) Her Pluto-Uranus conjunction (opposite Chiron) straddles his Ascendant/Descendant axis.
Inner wheel: Paul McCartney
Outer wheel: Heather Mills, sunrise chart
January 12, 1968
Aldershot, England (51N04, 0W47)

Paul and Heather were married on June 11, 2002, the day after a solar eclipse at 19°54′ Gemini conjunct his 1st-house ruler, Mercury retrograde at 18°21’ Gemini.

Heather Mills’s natal Juno is exactly conjunct his at 7° Scorpio. The less savory side of Juno in Scorpio is apparent, as personal details about their respective shadow sides came into the public record in the divorce proceedings. (5)

Curiously, her PNSE is 9° Scorpio, conjunct her natal Juno, amplifying the significance of marriage partners in her life trajectory. (6)

October 9 is the birthday of McCartney’s songwriting partner John Lennon and on that day in 2011 he married Nancy Shevell. Although there is no public birth time for her, here is her sunrise chart. (7)

Nancy Shevell
November 20, 1959
New York, NY (40N31, 74W00)
sunrise chart, true node, whole sign houses

The Moon was in Cancer until about 9:15 p.m. on her birthday, which places it in her sign of rulership. Nancy has four — five if she was born before 9:15 p.m — planets in domicile: Venus in Libra, Mars in Scorpio, Jupiter in Sagittarius and Saturn in Capricorn. We can’t say too much more without a birth time, but planets in their home signs offer a great deal of inner and outer resources to carry one through life.

Looking at eclipse patterns again, there was a lunar eclipse two months after the wedding. The eclipsed Moon on December 10, 2011 was at 18°08’ Gemini, again conjunct Paul’s 1st-house ruler, Mercury. As noted, there was a solar eclipse at 19°54′ Gemini conjunct his 1st-house Mercury the day after his difficult marriage to Heather Mills. In traditional astrological lore, the solar eclipse on a planet can be seen as burning, or destroying the planet it touches. It seems that the lunar eclipse two months after the marriage to Nancy was a far more gentle omen for the couple.

Nancy Shevell’s natal Neptune is 7°27’ Scorpio, directly in Paul’s natal Juno (7°48’ Scorpio). As mentioned above, his previous two wives also had direct conjunctions to his Juno.

Transiting Mercury (his natal chart ruler) at the wedding was at 23° Libra, conjunct the beautiful fixed star Spica, with asteroid Juno, the goddess of marriage standing right there at 24° Libra. The reports of the ceremony recounted that warm memories of Linda were spoken, along with the general happiness for the new couple. (Paul and Linda’s composite Juno is at 23° Libra in the 1st house, which is also the degree of Linda’s Sun/Moon midpoint — a beautiful testimony of her presence at the marriage.)

The great songwriter has the natal Venus/Mars midpoint directly conjunct the Sun at 26° Gemini, so the creative dance of the masculine/feminine resides in the heart of his essential nature.

Here’s a link to his lovely song Venus and Mars, written in 1975 when he was married to Linda.

The beginning lyrics:

Standing in the hall of the great cathedral
Waiting for the transport to come
Starship 21ZNA9
A good friend of mine
Studies the stars
Venus and Mars are alright tonight

Come away on a strange vacation
Holiday hardly begun
Run into a good friend of mine
Sold me her sign
Reach for the stars
Venus and Mars are alright tonight

The connection between Paul’s natal Venus in Taurus, its place of rulership and Nancy’s Mars is compelling — her Mars is equally potent in Scorpio, its place of rulership. The opposition between Venus and Mars across charts indicates a potent and creative attraction. In my mind, it is the most symmetrical Venus/Mars dynamic of any of Paul’s marriages.
Inner wheel: Paul, Outer: Nancy

May Paul and Nancy have continued happiness!


(1) All biographical details from Wikipedia

(2) Readers may know that I am keen on noting the degree of the PNSE (as per Carl Jansky) as a lifelong sensitive degree that can show people (or events) with whom we have a compelling or unusual connection.

(3) The solar eclipse prior to Paul’s birth was on March 16, 1942.

(4) Heather Mills: Jan. 12, 1968 in Aldershot, England, sunrise chart

(5) “Mills publicly accused McCartney of cruelty and sought a massive $250 million divorce settlement, but the judge sided with McCartney, calling her claims exorbitant. The British public, enamored of the sunny Sir Paul since his early Beatle days, also sided with the singer.”
Sun Times

(6) The solar eclipse was on November 2, 1967.

(7) Birthdate: Nancy Shevell

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Agents of Darkness, Agents of Change

By Jeremy Neal | September 2, 2020

(Editor’s note: The author is discussing several of the trans-Neptunian dwarf planets (Plutinos) named after underworld deities — Pluto, Ixion and Orcus. Further resources in Footnotes.)

What on earth is going on?

In a world that seems to have lost all rhyme and reason, and where the complications of yesterday seem strangely simplistic, this is a great question. And there is a very succinct answer, although not one especially simplistic. It requires a certain perspective to make it sensible, in the true sense of that word, and it’s a perspective that does not have universal appeal. I do believe, however, that it is indisputably the truth. The answer is evolution.

I can illustrate this theory quite easily by looking to the past — humankind has faced this kind of evolution before, and, if not exactly thriving, it has survived. But our collective response is crucial to the happy resolution of our present difficulties, and that will require a high degree of faith.

Let’s begin there. Why faith? Well, the answer is that, as a species, we are now experiencing a type of spiritual evolution rather than a physical one. There are also ongoing efforts to thwart this spiritual process by agents of darkness, who, for the maintenance of their own ascendancy, require that humans become drones in a kind of collective entity, not unlike the ants in a colony or the capacitors on a memory chip. And while I realise this sounds outlandish, or like imaginings from the golden age of science fiction authors like Robert Heinlein and Arthur C. Clarke, I firmly believe it is the truth, albeit not an empirical one that can be proven by scientists.

And therein lies the great conundrum of our age, as well as the shadow of my own Pluto-in-Virgo generation, which venerates science and depends upon it for the answers to our present challenges, as if science could supply anything but the most absurd answers. Its preference for using concoctions of nonhuman DNA and toxic heavy metals rather than living in harmony with natural processes that create strong immunity is one example of the Mecca of scientific absurdity. If health and longevity were the genuine objectives of the vaccine industry, why not employ non-toxic adjuvants like squalene and paraffin oil rather than mercury or aluminium compounds known to be detrimental to human health? This example, however, is an issue that does not get to the crux of the matter, but rather is symptomatic of the malaise that hinders and oppresses our current spiritual progress. (1)

The fact that these arguments and suppositions are so very contentious is illustrative of the breakdown of trust between the engines of human progress — science, medicine, government — and the humanity it is entrusted to transport into an allegedly brighter future. The golden ages of human emancipation into progress and enlightenment have typically been accompanied by literary, artistic, and spiritual dissemination, with the currency of personal self-improvement and societal renaissance being their common coin. Instead, we are witnessing the rise of ignorance, insularity, and xenophobia at every turn. This is no golden age, but a dark age in which the new inquisitors tasked with silencing dissent wear lab coats in place of cassocks. And their religion is a belief that the quantity of life should oppress its quality, even whilst peddling snake oil as the answer to all of our problems.

Our great advances in the fields of genetics, biology, and pharmacology are not fashioning a new Eden, but a great Bedlam instead. And this is why the world seems to have gone mad. In truth, the world is mad, and has deliberately been made so by those very agents of spiritual regression.

Reality, you see, does not occur in a vacuum. There is inevitably an astrological narrative that accompanies all Enlightenments and Dark Ages, and this is easily demonstrated, though its effects and ramifications are hard to divine.

Some examples: The stock market crash of 1929, which caused the first global recession, occurred five months before the discovery of Pluto. In terms of world timescales, this discovery and event were effectively concurrent, but even so, the search for Pluto began as early as 1894, when anomalies in the orbit of Neptune were first observed. So, Pluto was waiting in the wings, ready to make humankind grapple with its inner darkness.

Freud was developing his theories in the years leading up to Pluto’s discovery, but it was difficult then to appreciate how much his work would lay the foundations for a Plutonian landscape, a new paradigm in thought in which ideas of an unconscious life, of libido, of feminine sexuality, of a theory of dreams — all the psychological parlance and paraphernalia we now take for granted — would come into being in the decade leading to Pluto’s unveiling. And it was in 1932 when Edward Rutherford discovered that the atom could be split, the dire potentials of which were nothing less than the annihilation of all life on earth.

Thus, the domain of the Lord of Death became evident some months before his discovery, and this is the key principle we find at work in the world as we speak. New paradigms of human thought and understanding are becoming manifest through the revelation of both Orcus and Ixion. (2)

It is important to remain comfortable with the principle of the spiritual unfoldment that astrology represents, both personally and collectively. It is a means by which we can find a theoretical route to self-awareness, even to enlightenment. How many times have you contemplated the meanings of certain placements and configurations in your own chart, and seen them in a way that matched the apprehension of your current consciousness, and then, a little further down life’s road, when you re-evaluate that same glyph, it seems to contain an entirely new potential — one that reflects the hard-won fruits of the lessons you’ve learned since your last evaluation? This is an esoteric proof that astrology is no more than a map of your spiritual terrain, with the ongoing movements and overtures of the heavens acting as the levers and valves that channel increasing spiritual energies through the body ethereal. The only proviso is that you be awake to it.

Given that, is it any wonder that, in the age of Orcus, we are talking daily about self-isolation, social distancing, fake news, the post-truth age, false flags, and corruption at every level of public life? (3) Perhaps even more cogently, isolation has become an intrinsic part of our contemporary western lifestyle, with millions now working and living their lives virtually, while experiencing little human contact.

Similarly, should we be surprised by the increasing levels — obscene by any reasonable measure — of wealth inequality, of lobbying by special interest groups to the detriment of nearly all but a small hyper-privileged elite, and of a world effectively run by and for the benefit of narcissists and billionaires (is there a difference?), that have become commonplace since the unveiling of Ixion? (4)

We, therefore, are the “lucky” few to be alive at a time when a new class of dwarf planets, designated by the IAU to be named after underworld deities, are being classified and baptised. Each new player adds another archetypal dimension to our human consciousness, and we are attempting to assimilate an increasingly complex and disorienting array of mythic themes into our repository of psychological ordnance. And like any potentially explosive or toxic material, it causes injury, devastation, and misery when improperly handled. The problem is that, because these difficult energies are genuinely new, we are very inexperienced in terms of their management and care. We are the first generations in human history to contend with Ixion and Orcus (and Lempo). It is no surprise that we are in turmoil. Consider how the announcement of Pluto changed the world; it was a profound transformation hitherto unknown in time.

I feel that this explains so much. Yet it is argued by some that these new underworld deities (or asteroids in general) being unveiled and integrated into the astrological pantheon are not meaningful in the same way that we viewed Pluto’s discovery. I think this misses the point. But certainly Pluto is the pioneer, his introduction having paved the way for an entire domain of human experience previously unknown, or, at best, little trod, with the exception of a few brave pilgrims. It has taken a great deal of time and soul-work to begin to assimilate these dynamics into the universal human experience, but we have. It is now accepted that we have a psychological nature. Before Freud, this was considered fantastic fiction, like something from the pages of Astounding Tales. Now it is merely common sense, and it would be ridiculous to think otherwise.

These new archetypes are therefore not less important nor less profound, but we now have some proficiency in their handling — we are experienced, at least a little. As a result, how much more aware are we of pathologies such as narcissism since the baptism of Ixion? What about the rise in socially isolating conditions, such as autism, in the wake of Orcus’s discovery? Or the previously unimagined uncertainties that might affect biological gender types since the naming of Lempo? These new astrological paradigms are not less then, but instead they add detail, texture, and dimension to the previously vague “psychological” and underworld nature of the Plutonic realm. They are a necessary expansion of the Underworld, both personal and collective, if we are to spiritually evolve and grow, as individuals and as a species.

But, as Jung cautioned, there is no coming to consciousness without pain. These new archetypes add a great deal of struggle, contention, and conflict as we try to reach human consensus regarding the hitherto obscured and shadowy dimensions that they illuminate. Many feel it would be better had they remained in the dark, but we cannot put the genie back into the bottle, nor snap shut the lid on Pandora’s box. We can only respond to the difficult personal and spiritual work called forth by these new astrological archetypes by making the world a better place, in our own small way, as living examples to others of these evolutionary changes.


(1) The chart for the vaccine industry is highly intriguing and will experience its own Orcus, Ixion, and Pluto returns within the next 16 to 20 years. Expect difficult revelations.

The orbital periods of both Orcus and Ixion are 248 years, the same as Pluto’s. The vaccine chart is based on the first inoculation made by Edward Jenner on May 14, 1796 in Gloucester, U.K.

Edward Jenner: first inoculation

(2) Orcus and Ixion are two of the 13 Plutinos (trans-Neptunian objects) of notable size and mass; the other named ones are Pluto (the largest), Huya and Lempo. Lempo, discovered in 1999, is a Finnish deity of indeterminate gender! Coincidence?

Orcus was precovered on November 8, 1951, discovered on February 17, 2004, and named on November 26, 2004. (See:

Ixion was precovered on July 17, 1982, discovered on May 22, 2001, and named on March 28, 2002.

(3) Editor’s note: Here is the author’s earlier (2008) article Orcus awakens: help!: “For those who are not yet aware, Orcus is a planet, technically, in contemporary parlance, a plutoid. It is somewhat smaller than Pluto, but its orbital period is identical to Pluto (248 years), and it follows a near identical path around the ecliptic, though offset, it was discovered 74 years to the day after Pluto was discovered, and it was named Orcus, by those astrologically-phobic astronomers, after the Roman name for Pluto, who was later known as Dis Pater.”

Jeremy also wrote this blog for TMA in 2015: Orcus opposite Neptune: then and now

Some thoughts on Orcus from that blog: “For an Orcus primer, it’s key to understand that Orcus is a Hadean archetype, and, alongside Ixion and Pluto, completes a trinity of mostly unconscious, often challenging drives and compulsions, which, through their deteriorating influence on our human condition, gradually help to bring us to self-awareness. Where Pluto is intense and personal and represents the compulsion to attempt control of situations and people in our lives, Orcus is detached and impersonal and attempts to manage challenging circumstances, not with Pluto’s habitual power struggle and its attendant unpleasantnesses, such as humiliation and subjugation, but rather through cold, inhuman disinterest. In archetypal terms, Pluto is the Mafia boss pulling everyone’s strings and Orcus is his henchman and willing executioner with a heart of stone. Pluto is impassioned, Orcus passionless……..Keywords for Orcus: integrity, authenticity, implacability, ruthlessness, loneliness, isolation, ‘dark night of the soul,’ alienation, meditation and prayer, spiritual depth, determination, diehard, unbreakable, detached, merciless, inhumane, cruel.”

(4) The author’s website, Chirotic Journal, has an article: Ixion and the Good Life (posted in April 2020).

In that blog, Jeremy notes: “On February 25th, Ixion made ingress into Capricorn. These transitions of major planets into new domains are usually interesting, but rarely devastating. The movement of Ixion into Capricorn, however, is important, and not only because it marked the point in time when Coronavirus went ‘global’ and ceased to be an exclusively Chinese problem.”

And further, Jeremy writes: “The energy of Ixion is fundamentally Hadean. He sits in the shadowy triumvirate with Pluto and Orcus, and his astrological message is of Pluto’s pedigree: transform or perish! The Underworld Lords each have their dominion: Pluto who hollows life out and turns all joy to ash; Orcus who isolates and imprisons you into a long overdue introspection; Ixion, the most subterranean of all the inmates of Tartarus, who makes an unendurable torment that you nonetheless must endure. It hardly matters so long as you wake up and get authentic.”

Bio: Jeremy Neal is an astrologer living in Durham, England. He is the author of Orcus (reviewed in TMA 10/13), available via Amazon in paperback or Kindle. See Jeremy’s blog: The Chirotic Journals

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Biden His Time

By Alex Miller | August 26, 2020

They say third time’s the charm, and that may be the case for former US Vice President Joe Biden, who has finally gained traction on his third run for the presidency. After a dismal start in the primary season, Biden soared to the top of the charts with the South Carolina Primary, followed shortly by an overwhelming performance on Super Tuesday. He has been the unchallenged leader for the Democratic presidential nomination for months, culminating in his acceptance of the role on August 20 during the DNC’s virtual convention.

Joe Biden, solar return 2019

When I first looked at Biden’s 2019 solar return, using the lens of asteroids and other minor bodies, what stuck out like a sore thumb was Nike and Victoria, named respectively for the Greek and Roman goddesses of victory. (1) These puny powerhouses have a lot to say about winning and success in general — natally, by transit, and in return charts. At birth Joe Biden has Victoria at 19° Sagittarius exactly squared his 19° Virgo Midheaven, implying career success, with Nike at 29° Sagittarius conjoined asteroid Old Joe at 25° Sag, suggesting that perhaps the ultimate victory would come late in life. (2) (And, no, I am not making up “Old Joe”! It really is an asteroid!)

Joe Biden, natal

If anything, their placements for the solar return governing the all important 2020 campaign season were even more dramatic. Not only were Nike and Victoria conjunct at the same degree, 2° Virgo, but this falls within one degree of the SR Moon at 1° Virgo and two degrees of the SR ascendant at 4° Virgo, also in an out-of-sign square to the SR (and natal) Sun at 27° Scorpio!

When I saw this, I thought, “Well, that’s the Democratic nomination right there,” though I have to admit my faith in these itty-bitty rock chunks to work their magic was sorely shaken by the first month of the campaign, as Biden finished a dismal fourth in Iowa and fifth in New Hampshire. The Biden candidacy seemed a long shot, but then came South Carolina. Joe’s time had come!

Held on Leap Day, February 29, 2020, the “first in the South” primary saw Joe Biden leave his competitors in the dust, garnering 48% of the vote, almost 30 points ahead of Vermont Senator Bernie Sanders, his closest rival. With transit asteroid Carolina, at 28° Pisces trining his natal 27° Scorpio Sun and exactly inconjunct transit Nike at 28° Leo (still squared the natal Sun), an easy (trine) victory (Nike) was in the stars for Biden (natal Sun), who never looked back. Nike also featured at the apex of a precise yod (i.e., finger of destiny), with Saturn at 28° Capricorn, and Carolina, which further opposed transit asteroid Whitehouse at 27° Virgo, exactly sextile Biden’s natal Sun. The South Carolina (Carolina) win (Nike) had set Joe Biden (natal Sun) on a seemingly fated (yod) career (Saturn) glide path to the Oval Office (Whitehouse).

Biden’s pick of Senator Kamala Harris (D-CA) as his running mate, a former nomination competitor, showed further portents of victory. The announcement came across the internet at 4:15 p.m. EDT on August 11, 2020 with the 19° Sagittarius ascendant an exact match for natal Victoria, and squared by the ongoing conjunction of transit Victoria and Nike at 22° and 23° Virgo (which were therefore cresting his natal MC). (3)

The Biden/Harris political union was foreshadowed by PNAs (Personal-Named Asteroids) traveling with the transiting Sun at 19° Leo (exact with asteroid Washingtonia, for DC, and exactly trined that ascendant!) highlighting asteroid Harris at 21° Leo, asteroid Jose (Spanish for “Joseph”) at 18° Leo and asteroid Kamel (one of several variations which approximate “Kamala”) at 17° Leo. These combine with decision-making, announcement-inspiring, and newsworthy Mercury at 13° Leo to deliver the statement everyone was waiting for.

The Leo stellium at the announcement is squared by the Moon at 21° Taurus (adding further emphasis) and by asteroid Troemper (our closest celestial referent for The Donald) at 22° Taurus, whose squared aspect portrays the inimical stance between them. (There is actually a t-square formed by Moon/Troemper’s opposition to transit asteroid Bida — which approximates “Biden” — at 27° Scorpio, exact on Biden’s natal Sun at the time.

When Biden’s nomination became official at his acceptance speech on August 20th, with his uttering of those fateful words, “With great honor and humility, I accept this nomination” at 10:49 p.m. EDT, an incredible, exact, triple conjunction of the Moon, Nike, and Victoria, all at 26° Virgo, dominated the starscape. The Moon was just minutes from going void, with its last aspect a trine to Saturn at 26° Capricorn, and was bound up in a grand trine with asteroid Troemper, now at 25° Taurus (on Trump’s 24° Taurus MC, by the way). The transit Sun at 28° Leo is squared Biden’s natal Sun and trine his natal Nike at 29° Sagittarius.

The former VP has surely been “Biden” his time and hasn’t set a celestial foot wrong yet!

But can this winning vibe last through the election? Although technically the new solar return won’t kick in until November 19, 2020, more than two weeks after the fateful day, the energies of the 2019 return are definitely on the wane by then. Will it have the “oomph” to carry Biden across the finish line? Can the 2019 solar return Nike/Victoria/Moon/Ascendant conjunction still hold sway?

By Election Day on November 3, Nike and Victoria will be separating from their year-long conjunction and moving into the outer limits of orb, some seven degrees apart. Both Nike at 24° Libra and Victoria at 1° Scorpio conjoin Mercury, which rules the decision-making process, the vote itself, and its tabulation, at 25° Libra, and these square a stellium of asteroid Camillo, Jupiter, Pluto, Saturn, and asteroid Josephina at 19°, 21°, 22°, 26°, and 28° Capricorn. This puts Joe (Josephina) Biden and Kamala (Camillo) Harris in a very strong position — together, bookending energies that represent good fortune, expansion and increase (Jupiter), personal power and transformation (Pluto), and the presidency itself (Saturn) — that is tied directly to winning (Nike/Victoria) the vote (Mercury). That looks like popular vote success.

But there are mitigating factors to Biden getting the job, however the vote goes. Mercury makes its direct station that day, a circumstance that repeats the debacle of the 2000 election between Al Gore and George W. Bush, in which Gore won the popular vote but failed in the Electoral College after a Supreme Court decision stopped the Florida recount. Mercury at its station is slow and stuck, mired in its directional shift, so voting may be sluggish and stalled in all sorts of difficulties or delays. Transiting Saturn will also be squaring Mercury, which adds to the theme of slowing things down and perhaps alludes to voter suppression. We shouldn’t expect that a win (Nike/Victoria), any win, will be announced (Mercury) that day.

Mercury is also joined by asteroid Loke at 22° Libra, named for the Norse Trickster god Loki, and in a grand trine with asteroid Buysballot at 25° Gemini and Damocles at 23° Aquarius. This becomes a Kite pattern with Mercury’s opposition to TNO Eris at 23° Aries conjoined asteroid Koronis at 20° Aries. Buysballot is named for C.H.D. Buys Ballot, a Dutch meteorologist; in its English cognate form, “buys ballot” often appears when electoral shenanigans of all types are afoot. (4) Damocles represents the doom hanging overhead, and Eris connects to marginalized populations — agitated or resentful — while Koronis is our nearest celestial referent for the coronavirus.

Put it all together and you have a recipe for pervasive (conjunction) trickery (Loki), easily facilitated (trine) corruption (Buysballot), and impending disaster (Damocles) related to the vote (Mercury), impacted most strongly (opposition) by grievance politics and disenfranchisement (both Eris), and COVID-19 (Koronis).

The Sun at 11° Scorpio conjoins an exact pairing of asteroids Swindle (named for meteorite expert Tim Swindle, but a reliable indicator of its euphemistic meaning, ”to scam or con”) and Whitehouse at 18° Scorpio, and forms a t-square with Uranus at 7° Taurus and asteroid Maillen at the fulcrum at 17° Aquarius. (5) This shows potential for fraud (Swindle) and technical glitches (Uranus) with vote-by-mail (Maillen, a phonetic match for “mail-in” ballots), yielding an unexpected or controversial outcome (also Uranus) in the race for the Oval Office (Whitehouse).

Just which side cheats best and most might be expressed by a t-square of asteroid Troemper (Trump) at 1° Gemini on the fulcrum squared by asteroid Lie at 5° Virgo (named for Swedish mathematician Sophus Lie, but functioning consistently as deception and untruth), and opposing asteroids Hermes and Machiavelli at 1° and 2° Pisces. (6) Hermes is named for the Greek Trickster god noted as patron of thieves, another indicator of fraud, stealing, and dirty tricks, while Machiavelli, which comes to its direct station that very day, along with Mercury, relates to the amoral acquisition of power at whatever cost. Connected so intimately to the celestial factor representing Donald Trump, we can expect a no-holds-barred, truly down-and-dirty campaign and election.

I’m not sure how to weight all these factors in judging the outcome, but as a set of descriptors, they do seem to strongly point to one thing: at the very minimum, whatever transpires will be interesting to watch.

(1) Joe Biden’s solar return chart is cast for 11:53 p.m. EST, November 19, 2019.

(2) Joe Biden: November 20, 1942, 8:30 a.m. EWT, Scranton PA; Rodden rating A.

(3) As an internet announcement, this statement has no true geographic location, but I set the chart for Wilmington, Delaware, home of Joe Biden and his campaign headquarters; presumably the notice originated there.

(4) Wikipedia: C.H.D. Buys Best

(5) University of Arizona: Lunar and Planetary Lab Faculty

(6) Wikipedia: Sophus Lie

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The Dynamic August 18th New Moon

By Pam Gregory | August 16, 2020

The New Moon happens at 26°35’ Leo on the 18th at 7:41 p.m. PST and 3:41 a.m. UK time on the 19th. See where this new beginning falls in your chart and don’t forget to set an intention for what you want to manifest, as described by the house area in your natal chart where it falls.

This New Moon has very dynamic energy, with six planets in Cardinal signs (Jupiter, Saturn, and Pluto in Capricorn, and Chiron, Mars, and Eris in Aries) and six in Fire (Sun, Moon, and Mercury in Leo; and Mars, Chiron, and Eris in Aries). This is powerful, outward-directed energy, and is emphasised by the very tight squares with Mars and Eris, exactly conjunct within 25’, while squaring the Capricorn planets. Pluto is at the midpoint of Jupiter and Saturn, throwing its symbolism into high relief. So issues of power by leaders and governments will be very apparent at this time, while being challenged by those on the street. Aries represents the power of the individual, the need to be free and independent, and Pluto is the (often invisible) power of the state, the government. Pluto tightly conjunct Saturn suggests the exercise of more control, and this conjunction is being expanded by Jupiter in the same sign. The Sun and Moon are also within 3’ of an exact quincunx to Saturn, emphasising the increased ‘rules and regulations’ at the time — more ‘law and order’. It will meet resistance, which is part of the process of breakdown that allows a breakthrough to something better.

Remember that the dwarf planet Haumea — linked to the goddess of fertility, birth, and rebirth of humanity and nature — is at 25° Libra, so Haumea is forming a long-running t-square with the Aries and Capricorn planets, and promises a much better world where nature can be regenerated.

There is actually a grand fire trine at this New Moon, with the Sun and Moon at 26° Leo in trine to the Mars–Eris conjunction and the South Node at the Galactic Center (27° Sagittarius). When in combination, they can bring up our passion and a strong sense of self. Remember that the Galactic Centre represents the Creator energy that brings in the new, so this Grand Trine has a sense of optimism and passion about it and can help us to feel empowered. Leo energy is also highly creative, and, like Mars in Aries, it represents leadership energy. In addition to that, the Sun, Moon, and Mercury here are conjunct the Royal Star Regulus, symbol of kingship. We may be very focused on what good leadership represents at this time. Can we be a leader in whatever we’re doing, and have that sense of strength and inner power, whatever the outer circumstances? This is a time when we are being called up to “walk our talk”, to really put any spiritual practice to everyday use.

Leo is also linked to heart energy and ‘letting our unique light shine’. The heart is incredibly important, not only in our physiology, but in creating our future. Did you know that the electrical field of the heart is 60 times greater in amplitude than that of the brain, and that the heart sends much more information to the brain than the brain does to the heart? Intuitive knowing is the function of the heart, and the HeartMath Institute states that: “the heart plays a role in intuition by accessing an information field outside the bounds of spacetime.” Wow!

It’s vital that we avoid negative emotions, not only because they cause long-term damage to the physical heart, but because that’s what we’re broadcasting to create our future. When in our negative emotions, we are operating in duality — our point of reference is external, and our energy is inevitably scattered, reactive, and incoherent. If we can achieve coherence in our hearts, this is the energy that is sent to the brain and to every single cell in our bodies, as well as being broadcast to the world. Remember that energy is infectious — we catch it from others. Coherent energy expands the heart’s electromagnetic field, and this can be easily measured. Moreover, when we come together in numbers with coherent heart energy, we can start to create a powerfully wonderful future for us all. There is much evidence of how this can work, but just to mention one project that I wrote about in my first book, the Global Coherence Project has various sensors around the world to measure the energy of ‘the field’ produced by the collective. Its purpose is “to unite millions of people worldwide in heart-focused care and intention, to help shift global consciousness from instability and discord to balance, co-operation, and enduring peace”. Check out all the evidence they have accumulated.

So how do we achieve heart coherence? Simply follow your breathing while imagining that your heart is your lung. Breathe in and out deeply and slowly in a relaxed way (no forcing), feeling gratitude/appreciation/compassion, which will change your biomarkers within minutes. Your cortisol levels and blood pressure drop and your physical rhythms all become more coherent. So it is the heart that is the initiator of our frequency, and the brain follows. The heart guides the brain. This simple breath work is so powerful, and it’s free anytime. We don’t have to go anywhere or learn anything. If we could all do this several times a day, we would feel a much greater sense of energetic connection globally, too.

In addition to that, many sensitive people who channel have said that the ‘chambers’ of our hearts are becoming activated and energised, which is allowing them to connect to higher dimensions in terms of frequency. That is very much supporting our evolution. The symbolic link of Leo to ‘letting your light shine’ can often be seen in people who have a natural radiance about them — their very state of being is palpable.

Many of us during these times of cracking foundations, extreme unpredictability of leaders and events, and the constant blizzard of information (what is true and what is not anyway?) can feel exhausted and destabilised. You may feel suspended between two worlds. It is so much simpler if you are able, in the torrent of events arriving at your door, to simply work energetically; to bring yourself back to dropping into your heart, focusing on your breathing, and imagining a column of white diamond, high-frequency light coming down through your crown chakra and bringing in new information, as the Earth passes through the Photon Belt. Our new future depends upon every one of US to create, and that’s why this is such a vitally important time to work on that focus, while resisting being swept along by outer events. This is about developing our mastery. The less I pay attention to the news media, the better I feel.

Forget the past, it is gone. Keep your focus on your frequency and this inner development will become so exciting. This is what we can all do to achieve Unity Consciousness — one global SuperOrganism, with one heart and one mind pulling a wonderful world from the quantum soup into manifestation. The speed at which this happens is the barometer for how we are all doing in this effort.

The chaos on the 3D level is also signaling a rare and powerful evolutionary portal over the next six months that will not always be here. It is up to us to take advantage of this period of accelerated evolution by working with our frequency constantly. So can this New Moon in Leo herald a new understanding of the importance of the heart, and of love? Can we set an intention to commit to new ‘heart habits’? At this fiery New Moon, can we become Trailblazers for Love on this Earth?

Blessings to you all.

“Our days are happier once we give others a bit of our heart rather than a piece of our mind”.


Bio: Pam Gregory is the author of two books, You Don’t Really Believe in Astrology Do You? and the best-selling How to Co-Create using the Secret Language of the Universe. She holds the Diploma from the Faculty of Astrological Studies and achieved Highest Honours in Noel Tyl’s Master’s course. She has a thriving YouTube channel and a very busy client practice. You can subscribe to her monthly newsletter on any page of her website


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New Moon in Leo, August 18, 2020: Falling in Love with Our Creative Power

By Margarita Strashilova | August 11, 2020

The New Moon in the fixed fire sign Leo is coming! Leo represents our creative power and the joyful moments in life when we are free and spontaneous. It is linked to our ability to feel admired, appreciated, and loved, and is also an opportunity to connect with our capacity to enjoy life and be happy. There has been lots of intensity this year, and the planets will keep on surprising us with dynamic and transformative energies for the rest of 2020. But we have uplifting events like this New Moon to raise our vibration and stay connected to our power to create and manifest!

This New Moon brings energy for us to pour into our talents, hobbies, and artistic endeavors. On a deeper level it represents a powerful stimulus to our willingness to choose happiness and contentment in the present moment. When we choose happiness, rather than intensity, and connect to our creative power, we can more easily fulfill our dreams. But we need to let ourselves experience joy and bliss, and feel that we deserve it. A good affirmation for this New Moon: “I deserve to be happy!”

Leo’s rays will energize areas where we may feel a lack of movement or resources — we just need to ask and stay receptive. We can access this brilliant Leo energy when we’re in touch with our creative power; beautiful things can happen related to love, romance, children, projects, and new ideas. This New Moon also brings increased confidence and allows us to more easily accept compliments, praise, gifts, and proposals, and to welcome the rewarding opportunities that may follow. Leo lights a spark in our eyes that attracts others to our energy field.

Mars in Aries supports this Leo lunation because it will amplify the fiery energy of the Sun and Moon. Mars adds a healthy dose of anger that pushes us to act with enormous courage and strengthens our raw power to accomplish goals and desires. There can be a renewed capacity to assert our identity, and to be honest and direct about what we want to achieve, leaving behind all compromises to wholeheartedly pursue what we know we want.

The South Node in Sagittarius creates a powerful grand trine with Mars and the New Moon, with the North Node in Gemini completing a kite pattern. The Nodes in positive aspect to this New Moon signal that our ideas will come alive and thrive when we express our passions. New and exciting projects connected to communication may be on their way.

It is truly a wonderful time as the Leo New Moon symbolically invites us to a party after a long hard day. Yet it’s up to us to let go of our heavy burdens and welcome the inspirational mood to reshape our reality. This lunation in Leo asks us to fall in love with the creative resources we hold inside. It is all within our power!

Bio: Margarita Strashilova publishes astrological articles on her Facebook page @MargaritaAstroecstatic which are appreciated by many on a daily basis. Her mission, through her articles and private astrological counseling, is to help as many people as possible to get to know themselves better through astrology. In the future Margarita plans to develop courses and seminars on astrology topics. Her other interests include energy practices, psychology, spiritual and personal development. She can be messaged through her Facebook page or emailed:

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Can Donald Trump Win Reelection?

By Ema Kurent | July 27, 2020

I have asked myself whether I can judge this accurately, given that I was wrong in 2016. As it happened, most astrologers were wrong in 2016. Many of the very small minority who got it right had made their prediction of Trump’s win way before the election.

As you may remember, the polls were decidedly in favor of a Hillary Clinton win for many weeks prior to the election. I guess I was not the only one misled by her huge lead, as I did not even wonder which candidate would win; instead I had asked myself what in Hillary’s chart showed that she would win. And, along with that bias, I was juggling at least three possible ‘correct’ charts for her.

As fate would have it, the astrologers who were asked to present their opinions at the ISAR 2016 conference had been emailed the (supposedly) “truly correct” birth time for Hillary only a week or two before the conference. It’s been my policy that if a client isn’t sure about the exact birth time, I won’t work on their chart. So, my initial mistake in 2016 was agreeing to form an opinion in spite of “dirty data.” But the 2020 U.S. Presidential election is different because we have AA data for Donald Trump and A data for Joe Biden.

Donald Trump: June 14, 1946; 10:54 a.m.; Queens, New York

Joe Biden: November 20, 1942; 08:30 a.m.; Scranton, Pennsylvania

Clearly, Trump’s progressions were fantastic in late 2016 and early 2017. Particularly impressive was the fact that on Inauguration Day, January 20, his progressed Moon (25°43’ Cancer) was spot on his natal Venus (25°44’), the ruler of his Taurus 10th house of career and success. Also, his progressed Sun had recently crossed his natal Ascendant, while his progressed Ascendant sextiled natal Mars (October 2016), and while the progressed Moon was exactly conjunct his antivertex (22°51’ Cancer) on November 7. Cancer is the first summer sign associated with the “homeland” and the ‘common folks’ whose hearts he had won. In addition to that, both solar eclipses surrounding the election — September 1 at 9°23’ Virgo and February 26 at 8°09’ Pisces — were favorably aspecting Mercury, the dispositor of his 10th–house Sun.

The logical questions: Is there as much power in his chart now and in the coming months, especially in early November 2020? Is there enough power to overcome his opponent, Joe Biden?

Let’s take a look. Trump’s progressed Moon has moved to Virgo, the last summer sign that does not have the strong, vital, cardinal energy of Cancer. It is called mutable because the seasons are changing when the Sun travels there. This shows that Trump’s underlying energy may be less inclined to fight, or initiate, than in 2016. In early November, the progressed Moon will be at 18°25’ Virgo, where it makes no aspects, except to square his progressed lunar nodes. (Note that I am using exact, 1° aspects.) On January 20, 2021, the progressed Moon will be at 21°16’ Virgo, just past the square to his natal Moon and nodes, and about to square his progressed Uranus (21°23’ Gemini). I interpret this configuration as “disconnected.” It looks to me like Donald Trump will leave office. (Interestingly, the transiting Moon will reach the 20th degree of Gemini on the evening of the election, activating this configuration.)

But before coming to any definite conclusions, we should check the closest eclipses. The November 30, 2020 appulse lunar eclipse (8°44’ Gemini) will semisquare his Saturn — a depressing influence —whereas the December 14 total solar eclipse (23°06’ Sagittarius) will take place in his 4th house (of endings), in an exact opposition to his natal Sun while quincunx to natal Saturn, confirming the indications given by his secondary progressions.

How about Joe Biden? His natal Mercury, ruler of his 10th house, is in an applying trine to his Jupiter (albeit from the “hidden” 12th house), suggesting a successful career. We have already seen this in his life, but the aspect will be strongly reinforced by transiting Jupiter (21°29’ Capricorn) in an exact sextile to his Mercury on election day. What’s more, the Sun will be conjunct his natal Mars, ruler of his 5th house of luck. The most recent solar eclipse — June 20, 2020 at 0°20’ Cancer — exactly sextiles his natal Moon and its node, showing a strong positive push in his current standing as the major force of the Democratic Party. The November 30th lunar eclipse (8°44’ Gemini) will be conjunct Saturn in his 7th house, whereas the December solar eclipse (23°06’ Sagittarius) will sesquisquare his Pluto. That’s not such a good thing, especially with his progressed Moon in mutable Pisces, which shows low energy or a lack of courage and dynamic force. On the other hand, politicians have been known to thrive during such periods due to the increased hope and idealism that voters project onto them. He could, therefore, personalize the Piscean ‘dream,’ which is certainly not a bad thing when it comes to elections.

Biden’s progressed chart is actually much better than Trump’s. After passing some stressful, chilling aspects in September (progressed Moon square progressed Saturn), his progressed Moon will conjunct his progressed Venus on October 1 and sextile his progressed Mars on November 8, a few days after the election. This invigorating aspect could bring him success. (1)

However, the most positive indication for Biden is the December solar eclipse (23°06’ Sagittarius) in his progressed 10th house (and natal 1st house), sextile to his progressed Ascendant (22° Aquarius) and in trine/sextile with the progressed nodes (24° Aquarius/Leo). A strong eclipse in the 10th house is an indicator of change in one’s career or social standing.

Last but not least, the Jupiter–Saturn conjunction in December at 0°29’ Aquarius will trine Biden’s 10th–house Neptune and 7th–house Uranus. The social planets in Aquarius are a strong indication of the democratic politics that Biden represents. In conclusion, I must say that I think Joe Biden will win the next U.S. Presidential election.

(1) Joe Biden’s progressed Moon (5°35’ Pisces) squares progressed Saturn (5°25’ Gemini) on September 14; the progressed Moon conjuncts progressed Venus on October 1 at 6°15’ Pisces; the progressed Moon (7°47’ Pisces) sextiles progressed Mars (7°47’ Capricorn) on November 8.

Bio: Ema Kurent (DFAstrolS, QHP, CMA, ISAR CAP) is a professional astrologer from Slovenia, working as a consultant, teacher, writer, researcher, and publisher. She specializes in traditional and predictive astrology. She runs Astrological Academy Stella (ISAR affiliated) and has written many books: Sonce in Luna (The Sun and the Moon, 2008); Lunin vodnik (Moon Guide, a yearly publication since 2005); Horarna astrologija (2015); Horary Astrology (2019), and nine student textbooks. She has lectured in Slovenia, England, Poland, the U.S.A., South Africa, India, and Serbia. Contact her: Ema,,

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New Moon in Cancer July 20, 2020: One more opportunity to connect to our true needs and emotions

By Margarita Strashilova | July 15, 2020

The next New Moon at 28°26’ Cancer is another step on the path to connecting with our emotions in a positive way that will allow us to care for and nurture ourselves and others. It’s been a tough journey for all of us with the recent activity on the Cancer-Capricorn axis, which deals with the balance between softness and roughness, family life and career, emotions and discipline. There have been a series of eclipses in Cancer and Capricorn as well — the first in July 2018 and the last on July 4, 2020 — that have opened the door to exploring our emotional worlds. This New Moon continues the powerful call to sink more deeply into the inner sanctuary of our feeling nature.

The opposition from Pluto and Saturn in Capricorn to the Sun and Moon in Cancer makes this new lunar cycle especially intense. We may feel pulled between right and wrong, or we may experience ups and downs in how we perceive our emotions. Pluto and Saturn in Capricorn provoke us to release attitudes about authority figures and social status. Outdated attitudes may prevent us from realizing a new beginning in Cancer’s realm, which, at best, can harmonize our family lives and emotional health.

To work with the energy of this New Moon, we can ask ourselves: What new beginnings can I bring in addressing my emotions and honoring my feelings? Perhaps it’s a new home environment, or a new job or hobby, that nurtures us emotionally. Or we may simply feel drawn toward becoming more familiar with our needs. A key aspect of this Cancer New Moon will emphasize our capacity to work with and understand our emotional reactions.

Throughout 2020, we’ve discovered that we function well when we retreat back to our inner core, while leaving our desire for power and control behind. We all want to experience fulfilling lives of being in touch with our true self and having success in important areas of life, such as relationships, family, and career. But sometimes we are too hard on ourselves and forget that not everything is about hard work and achievement.

The New Moon in Cancer opposes transiting Saturn and Pluto, which indicates that to have the desired outcome, we must let go of any authority that feels heavy on our soul and drains our energy. It will be a good time to reflect on how we work with authority in our daily lives. Are there authority figures that block our capacity to achieve harmony in our lives? Or, in trying to be respected and successful, have we built a layer of authority around ourselves that keeps others away? Do we repeat past mistakes and patterns that leave us feeling trapped and limited?

On this Cancer New Moon, we can set intentions connected to our home, family, heritage, motherhood, and children, and we can direct our energy toward getting to know our emotional world. After the solar eclipse in Cancer (June 21, 2020) and the lunar eclipse in Capricorn (July 5, 2020), this New Moon is a natural next chapter in the story of finding deeper meaning in our lives, particularly in the way we emote and in our capacity to give and receive care and support.

Bio: Margarita Strashilova publishes astrological articles on her Facebook page @MargaritaAstroecstatic which are appreciated by many on a daily basis. Her mission, through her articles and private astrological counseling, is to help as many people as possible to get to know themselves better through astrology. In the future Margarita plans to develop courses and seminars on astrology topics. Her other interests include energy practices, psychology, spiritual and personal development. She can be messaged through her Facebook page or emailed:

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