The Outer Planets and the Art of Happiness

National Council for Geocosmic Research

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A difficult trip (horary)

A friend shared with me the following horary.  He was traveling from Hong Kong to NYC for a 10-day vacation. Before boarding the  plane in Hong Kong on Thursday 24 March 2016 , he decided to ask a horary question at 7:46 AM about how the trip would go.  Here is the chart with Regiomontanus houses.

Hong Kong Horary

In this chart, the last degree of Aries rises (a late Ascendant).  Mars, which rules the querent, lies in the 8th house conjunct its cusp.  In traditional horary the 6th, 8th and 12th houses are considered unfortunate.  In this chart there is a predominance of planets in houses 6, 8 and 12  — a caution that there may be problems with the trip, perhaps due to ill health.

Future trends are shown by applying aspects.  Mars (the querent) applies to square Neptune.  Squares generally indicate difficulties.  Neptune here occupies his 11th house of hopes and wishes, suggesting that there may be difficulties achieving his hope for a good trip.

The trip itself is shown by the 9th house of long-distance travel.  Jupiter rules the 9th and conjoins the 6th house cusp of illness.  Jupiter is retrograde and lies in Gemini, the sign of its detriment, so Jupiter is not in good condition in this chart.  Furthermore, Jupiter is barely separating from an exact square to Saturn in the unfortunate 8th from the cusp of the 6th of illness.  Jupiter apples to square Venus and to oppose Neptune, both of which lie in his 11th of hopes and wishes.  Jupiter also separates from a trine to Pluto which conjoins the MC, making Pluto (complications) an important factor in this chart.

Also noteworthy in this chart is that the Moon’s nodes highlight the axis of the 6th and 12th houses, again emphasizing illness and confinement.

The outcome:  When he left Hong Kong, he was feeling run-down with some upper respiratory symptoms.  Sunday night he woke with intense nausea and vomiting.  On Monday he needed to go to a medical clinic because he felt so ill.  On Tuesday the nausea had subsided but he woke with abdominal pain and returned to see the doctor.  Instead of sightseeing, he spent a lot of time in bed in his hotel room.  Because of his ongoing GI symptoms, he shortened his vacation and decided to return to Hong Kong three days earlier than he originally planned.


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An electional chart with an expected unexpected twist

A couple days ago a NYC friend called me with a request for an optimal time to leave for a flight at Kennedy Airport.  She was planning to go skiing and had already booked the flight.  To get the the airport on time she had to leave her apartment no later than 2:15 pm and said she could leave as early as 2 pm.  Basically, she was asking for the optimal astrological time within a 15-minute time window to depart on her trip.

I ended up suggesting a time of 2:03 pm but with some reservations.  Here is the chart:

Electional chart

Electional chart

My reasoning was as follows.  She had to leave between 2 and 2:15 pm.  Leo rises and the Sun conjoins Mercury (cazimi) in the 9th of long-distance travel.  It seemed wise to have the Sun and Mercury apply by trine to the Ascendant.  In addition, the Moon (a natural symbol of travel) would be trine the Part of Fortune from the 3rd house of local travel.  Thus, 2:03 seemed the optimal time within the limits she gave me.

The only concern was Uranus conjunct the MC during this period, especially close at the 2:03 pm time.  I thought this would mean some kind of unexpected disruption but that the favorable trines of Sun/Mercury to ASC and Moon the Part of Fortune would offset any serious negative factors.  Nonetheless, had she consulted me about a day and time to leave for the airport, I would not have selected a chart with Uranus on an angle.

Today (23 March 2016) she called me from the airport.  She left at the appointed time.  The ride to Kennedy Airport went smoothly, but when she got to the airline she learned that a blizzard in Denver had closed the airport.  Her flight was canceled and she needed to look for another flight.  I’m still waiting to hear from her about the final outcome.

Addendum: My friend was able to get a flight the next morning from Newark Airport to smaller airport in Colorado because the Denver airport remained closed due to the blizzard.  She arrived a day late but got to Colorado nonetheless.  Most other passengers remained stranded at other airports, had much longer delays, or needed to cancel their trips altogether.  Thus, Uranus on the MC was quite disruptive but the favorable factors in the chart worked out in the end.


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The “Unexpected” Death of Antonin Scalia

The recent death of Supreme Court Justice Antonin Scalia has been much in the news. Such reports frequently speak of his “unexpected death” but was it really unforeseeable?

scalia foto

Justice Scalia was born on 11 March 1936 at 20:55 (8:55 pm) in Trenton, New Jersey.  Here is his natal chart.

In considering questions of death, we would look at the Ascendant (life force, vitality, the body), the 8th house (mortality), the 4th house (end of life).  The 6th and 12th houses also play a role as symbols of illness and infirmity.

Scalia’s Libra Ascendant is ruled by Venus.  The Moon in Scorpio in the 1st house close the the ASC is also an important symbol of his vitality.

Venus also rules his 8th house of death, and the Moon is almuten of th 8th cusp and rules the 8th by exaltation. Even a beginning astrologer would interpret Uranus in Taurus the 7th opposing the Libra ASC and almost exactly opposite the 1st house Moon as signifying the potential for a sudden unexpected death.  The strong influence of Uranus suggests that he will eventually die in a sudden and unusual manner, for that is the nature of Uranus which opposes his planets of life and the body.

As an adult, Justice Scalia was quite obese  — a factor which significantly shortens the life span.  Judging from photos of him in the news, I would estimate a BMI of more than 40. According to a scientific study reported in the LA TImes: “Those with a body mass index, or BMI, above 40 are robbed of at least 6 1/2 years, on average, of expected life span, a study has found. And the toll in years lost rises with the degree of obesity, reaching nearly 14 years for the most obese — those with a BMI above 55, researchers said.”  His physical stature indicates a shorter than average life span.  Astrologically, the Moon in the 1st house with a sextile from a strong Jupiter in Sagittarius to the Libra ASC is a marker of obesity and potential health problems due to overindulgence.

Antonin Scalia lived in New Jersey and worked in D.C., whose average life expectancies for males are 77.91 and 82.07 respectively.  Averaging the two, we get a figure of 79.99 years of age as an expected life span.  Not surprisingly, when the judge died on 13 February 2016, he was 79.93 years old.   From an actuarial point of view, Justice Scalia died almost exactly on cue.

Let’s look at his Solar Return for this year superimposed on his natal chart:

SCalia SR

Here his Solar Return Venus (ruler of his natal ASC) is angular and opposes his natal Ascendant.  This is an indication of health problems during the year.  Furthermore his Solar Return MC very closely conjoins the cusp of the unfortunate natal 12th house cusp, and the Return IC conjoins the natal 6th house cusp of illness.  Wherever the Angles of the Solar Return fall in the natal chart are points especially emphasized during the coming year.  Thus, the return MC/IC axis falling almost exactly on the natal 6th/12th axis highlights health concerns and infirmities.

S.R. Uranus conjoins natal Mars in the 6th of illness, again suggesting unexpected infirmity.  Also significant is that Solar Return Saturn (which rules the natal 4th of the end of life) conjoins the return Moon (which rules the natal 8th of death as almuten and through exaltation).  In addition, the Solar Return ASC at 14 Sagittarius almost exactly squares his natal Saturn in Pisces, with Saturn ruling the end-of-life natal 4th cusp.

Finally, let’s look at Scalia’s primary directions for the period of 6 months before and after his death.  I used Placidus semi-arc and Ptolemy’s time key in the Morinus program:

Scalia primary

  • In September of 2015 we see ASC square Moon, ruler of the 8th of death as almuten and through exaltation, indicating a period when death is possible.  (Age 79.54)
  • In November of 2015 Saturn squares Sun, weakening the life force.  (Age 79.66)
  • In December of 2015 ASC (life force, the body) square Uranus warns of sudden disruptive events.  (Age 79.79)
  • In February of 2016 Pluto square MC/IC symbolizes radical change involving end-of-lie matters.  (Age 79.91)
  • On 13 February 2016 Scalia dies at age 79.99.
  • In April of 2016 Moon (8th ruler) square Uranus symbolizes the possibility of sudden death.  (Age 80.06)

Primary directions set the stage for an extended period of time and rarely time events exactly according to when they perfect.

In summary, whether we look at Justice Scalia’s demise scientifically or astrologically, it was not as “unexpected” as the news media would have us believe.


Addendum I: Gloria asked for the settings I used in Morinus.  Here is a screenshot.

Addendum II (24 Feb 2016):  Recent news reports reveal that Justice Scalia smoked cigarettes and suffered from diabetes, obesity and heart disease.  In his natal chart, Moon in the 1st house, Jupiter sextile the ASC, and Venus trine the ASC suggest obesity and overindulgence.  Venus rules his ASC and his Placidus 12th of undoing.  Jupiter rules the Whole Sign 6th of health problems.  The Sun, which is a universal symbol of the heart, squares Jupiter, suggesting heart problems due to excess.

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Solar Return for the Onset of Diabetes

I came across a video on YouTube in which a young man known as “Dalas” talks about how he was diagnosed with diabetes.  Apparently early in 2007 while still a student he began to urinate frequently and to lose a significant amount weight, which ultimately resulted in hospitalization.  After visiting doctors for 6 months, he was finally diagnosed with diabetes.  (This is a bit strange because frequent urination and weight loss signal the need to screen immediately for diabetes in the mind of any competent health professional.)

Apparently Dalas is a regular YouTuber in Spain. He gives his birth data as October 31, 1993 in Tenerife (time unknown).  The diabetes was diagnosed when he was living in Barcelona. His YouTube profile states:

Daniel Azahar Blanco. Mejor conocido en YouTube como DalasReview o simplemente Dalas, es un actor, escritor, diseñador y youtuber español. Nació en Tenerife, pero se mudó a Barcelona, lugar donde actualmente sigue viviendo. Sufre de diabetes desde 2007.”  (He is a Spanish actor, writer, designer and YouTuber born in Tenerife.  He moved to Barcelona where he currently resides and was diagnosed with diabetes in 2007.)

I wondered whether his Solar Return for the year 2007 would should significant health problems and potential hospitalization.  Not having an actual time of birth, I used the sunrise birth chart for the birth location, which often provides a useful perspective.  Here is his sunrise birth chart (Placidus houses) with the solar return in effect during 2007 calculated for Barcelona superimposed.


The natal chart is the inner wheel.  He has four planets in Scorpio: the Sun at the beginning of the sign plus a Mercury-Mars-Pluto conjunction, suggesting a person of intense emotions with a sharp wit and strongly held opinions.  Venus and Jupiter in Libra indicate a great deal of personal charm, refined tastes, artistic and creative interests, a strong need to be in a relationship, and a well developed sense of fairness and justice. The Moon exalted in Taurus (ruled by Venus) also suggests a highly creative individual.

His natal Taurus Moon opposes the natal Mercury -Mars-Pluto stellium in Scorpio (his sun sign and sunrise 1st house), and this opposition is squared by natal Saturn from the sunrise 4th house of home and family. This T-square may indicate health problems and possibly a proneness to depressive thoughts and feelings (Saturn square Mercury and the Moon), and perhaps also a difficult early home environment (Saturn in the sunrise 4th).

The Solar Return (SR) in effect for the time he suffered the first symptoms of diabetes and was diagnosed with the illness is superimposed around the sunrise natal chart.  SR Mars, which rules his natal 6th of physical infirmity, comes to the natal ASC.  SR Venus, which rules his 12th of hospitalization and chronic illness, also comes the the natal ASC.  Both SR Mars and SR Venus conjoin the Sun.  This configuration is a clear indication of possible illness and confinement during the year 2007.

In addition, transiting Saturn in the Solar Return almost exactly squares his natal Mars, ruler of the 6th of infirmity.  This SR Saturn square natal Mars is especially important because Saturn rules the SR Ascendant in Barcelona.  This is another strong indicator of the potential for a serious illness during the year.  (The SR Ascendant for his birthplace, Tenerife, has 26 Sagittarius rising, so that SR Pluto lies on the ASC, suggesting a year of major life-altering change.)

If we look just at the Solar Return of the sunrise birth chart for Barcelona, we see further confirmation of the events of 2007.

Dalas sr.jpg

In the SR chart, Capricorn rises and its ruler Saturn lies in the 8th house (mortality, major medical interventions).  Furthermore SR Saturn closely squares SR Jupiter (ruler of the 12th of chronic illness and hospitalization).  SR Mercury, which rules the SR 6th of illness, closely conjoins SR Jupiter and squares SR Saturn in the 8th.  This pattern is a clear warning of the potential for a health crisis in 2007.

It is always fascinating to see how astrological symbolism plays out in real life.  My thanks to Dalas for making available his birth data and publishing the video account of his onset of diabetes.   I wish him the best of health and success in his endeavors.

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My Interview on Biddy Tarot


Biddy Tarot Interview

Biddy wrote:

Many would have you believe that Tarot is a complex, mysterious tool that can only be accessed by a select group of ‘gifted’ people, and only after years and years of study and practice.

But in this Biddy Tarot Podcast episode, I want to throw that idea out the window.

That’s why I invited the author of the best-selling book, Tarot Plain and Simple, Tony Louis, to join me to talk about how to simplify the Tarot and use this powerful tool in our everyday lives.

Tony is a down-to-earth Tarot reader, astrologer and psychiatrist (yes – you read that right!) who has decades of experience helping people connect to their inner wisdom and subconscious mind.

In this episode, Tony and I discuss:

  • How Tony found deep meaning from his own life in the Tarot cards, and learned to read with his heart
  • The origins of Tarot and how it has evolved through time
  • The sacred simplicity of the symbols in the Tarot cards
  • The little-known connection between Tarot and Astrology
  • Tony’s tips for starting out with your very first Tarot deck
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Autistic boy goes missing on New Year’s Eve

Autistic boy goes missing on New Year's Eve

Autistic boy goes missing on New Year’s Eve

Around 11 pm on New Year’s Eve an autistic 5-year-old boy wandered away form a party in Allentown, PA.  On Saturday, 2 January 2016, his body was found in a canal about a quarter mile from the home from which he had wandered.  Most news reports say he was last seen around 11 pm, although one gives the time he was last seen at 10:30 pm.  The above is a chart for an 11 pm disappearance.

Virgo rises, making Mercury the ruler of the missing child.  The Moon is a general signifier of missing persons.  The Ascendant (the missing child) in a nodal degree is often regarded as a fateful sign because eclipses, traditionally malefic omens, occur in the degrees of the Moon’s nodes.

Mars rules the 8th cusp of death. Mercury (the missing child) is closely square to Mars, an ominous sign.  The Moon, a signifier of wandering persons, is fairly exactly semi-sextile Mars, another ominous aspect.  Finally, Uranus (sudden unexpected events) conjoins the traditional Part of Death near the cusp of the 8th house.

All-in-all, the symbolism of the chart for when the boy was last seen accurately depicts the course of events.



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