When is a planet really ‘cazimi’

In March of 2021 several astrological sites posted articles about the supposed upcoming phenomenon of Venus being ‘cazimi’ on March 26th at 5 Aries 50 in the tropical zodiac. The word ‘cazimi’ apparently comes from an Arabic term meaning ‘in the heart of the Sun’. According the the definition of cazimi by Guido Bonatti, the conjunction of Venus with the Sun on 26 March 2021 was NOT an example of Venus being cazimi because Venus was 1 degree 21 minutes of latitude below the ecliptic and did not overlap the body of the Sun. I first became aware of the importance of paying attention to planetary latitude in classical astrology when I read Pingree’s translation of Dorotheus back in the late 1970s.

William Lilly defined ‘cazimi‘ as the center of a planet being less than 17 minutes of arc from the center of the Sun:

“A Planet is in the heart of the Sun, or in Cazimi, when he is not removed from him 17 minutes, or is within 17 minutes forward or backward …” (CA 113).

Later in his text Lilly gives a value of 16 minutes of arc: “when a planet is within 16 minutes of the Sun, he is said to be in cazimi…” (CA 300). This definition is a little less accurate.

This definition is based on Sun having an angular diameter of about half a degree, or more precisely, between 31′27″ and 32′32″. Thus, half the diameter of the Sun as seen from Earth ranges from 15’44” to 16’16”, so that the center of a planet lying within this range of distance from the Sun will generally overlap with the body of the Sun when there is up to 16’16” of arc between them, which is less than 17′ of arc.

The precise measurement of cazimi will depend on the day of the year and the angular diameter of the planet involved. From an observational viewpoint on Earth, cazimi and extend up to 16’16” from the center of the Sun, which accounts for Lilly sometimes writing “within 17 minutes” and at other time writing “within 16 minutes” of arc. If we take into account atmospheric refraction, the body of the Sun can appear to have an angular diameter of 34′ of arc, so that cazimi would extend up to 17′ from the center of the Sun, which is consistent with Lilly’s definition on page 113 of Christian Astrology.

Unfortunately, Lilly did not clarify that being cazimi applies to distance from the Sun in both ecliptic longitude and latitude, making the ‘cazimi’ status of a planet an extremely rare occurrence. Most commonly a planet which conjoins the Sun in longitude does not overlap the body of the Sun in latitude, and thus is not cazimi (in the heart of the Sun).

According to William Lilly, a cazimi planet, which lies in the heart of the Sun, thereby becomes strongly fortified and beneficial as a result of its increase in fortune (CA 300). Followers of Lilly who are not aware that Bonatti’s definition applies to both ecliptic longitude and latitude are often surprised that supposedly ‘cazimi’ planets in horary charts do not confer much benefit to the querent and instead can act more like planets combust the Sun. Over the years in several horary chart in which significators appeared cazimi I was disappointed that the beneficial implications of a cazimi planet did not manifest in the outcome of the chart, until I realized that I had been ignoring the latitude of the significator and only considering its close conjunction with the Sun in ecliptic longitude.

As already mentioned, the 13th century astrologer Guido Bonatti, whom Lilly loves to cite, makes the definition quite clear: “And when the planet is with the Sun in one degree, so that there are 16’ or less between them, both by latitude and longitude (which rarely happens), it is said to be united, and then it is made strong, because it is said to be in the Sun’s forge, that is, in his heart.” (Ben Dykes translation of Liber Astronomiae, 2007, p.211)

Bonatti’s definition basically means that to be cazimi, the center of the planet must lie within the body of the Sun. We moderns tend to underestimate the remarkable observational skills of our astrological forebears. If the ancients had our modern telescopes, they might well have illustrated their definitions of cazimi with a diagram like the following from NASA:

Cazimi Venus from https://www.nasa.gov/mission_pages/sunearth/news/gallery/2004-2012-transit-paths.html

The accompanying text from the NASA site goes as follows:

A transit of Venus across the Sun takes place when the planet Venus passes directly between the Sun and Earth, becoming visible against (and hence obscuring a small portion of) the solar disk. During a transit, Venus can be seen from Earth as a small black disk moving across the face of the Sun.

Transits of Venus are among the rarest of predictable astronomical phenomena. They occur in a pattern that repeats every 243 years, with pairs of transits eight years apart separated by long gaps of 121.5 years and 105.5 years. This month’s transit is the bookend of the 2004-2012 pair. The first occurred on June 8, 2004. This second one will occur on June 5, 2012.

After 2012, the next transits of Venus will be in December 2117 and December 2125.”

Putting Bonatti’s text into modern language, we can say that a ‘cazimi’ Venus is a transit of Venus across the Sun. As the NASA site clarifies, such transits of Venus across the body of the Sun (inferiror conjunctions as seen from Earth) are extremely rare. “They occur in a pattern that repeats every 243 years, with pair of transits eight years apart separated by long gaps of 121.5 years and 105.5 years.” There was a cazimi Venus in 2004, paired with one in 2012, with another pair which will occur in December of 2117 and 2125. There was not a transit of Venus across the Sun in March of 2021 despite what some astrological sites may have claimed. You can’t believe everything you read in print. Thus, if you’ve been reading very tight conjunctions of planets with the Sun as the planets being cazimi, without taking into account latitude, you’ve been misinterpreting horary charts and giving misleading information to your clients.

Venus transiting the Sun, in NASA’s sense, refers to the inferior conjunction of Venus with the Sun, during which the body of Venus becomes visible to observers on Earth in an awe-inspiring way. (As an aside, Bruce Scofield in his book How to Practice Mayan Astrology, notes that newsworthy events, which correlate with the inferior conjunction of Venus, are “often characterized by impulsive human errors that lead to a levelling or crash of some sort.” This sounds a lot more like Venus being combust than her being cazimi, which is a rare occurrence, according to Bonatti’s definition.) Does the idea of ‘cazimi’ also apply to Venus at its superior conjunction with the Sun if the body of Venus is completely hidden by the body of the Sun and, in a sense, is super-combust and most impossible to see from Earth? It would make sense to consider both the inferior and superior conjunctions of the body of Venus with the body of the Sun to meet the definition of ‘cazimi’, even if we can’t see the superior conjunction with our telescopes.

If we take Bonatti’s definition seriously, then we may also need to rethink the definition of combustion. As you can see in the NASA image, once Venus lies outside the disk of the Sun is it completely obscured by the Sun’s rays and is combust, even if it exactly conjoins the Sun in ecliptic longitude. Thus, planets very near the Sun are combust unless they happen to overlap the body of the Sun in both longitude and latitude. If such is the case, the Venus/Sun conjunction of 26 March 2021 occurred with Venus combust the Sun because the center of Venus was 1 degree 21 minutes distant from the center of the Sun in latitude at the time of the exact conjunction in longitude.

The implication of Bonatti’s definition is the planets are considered ‘combust’ if their bodies do not overlap that of the Sun and they are also sufficiently close to Sun to be rendered invisible to an observer on Earth. The number of degrees of distance from the Sun to become visible will vary with the intrinsic brightness of the planet involved, ranging from about 8 degrees for Venus and Mars to about 19 degrees for Mercury, which can only be at most about 28 degrees from the Sun and is therefore visible to the naked eye only at certain limited times during the year.

The following diagram comes from an article posted at the harvard.edu site. It lists the inferior conjunctions of Venus from 1961 to 2023, together with the latitude of Venus during each inferior conjunction. It is readily apparent that the only two such conjunctions in which the body of Venus transits the body of the Sun occur in 2004 and 2012. On all the other dates Venus is combust the Sun in latitude during its inferior conjunction with the Sun. Note that on several of the dates, Venus is a full 8 degrees or more away from the center of the Sun in latitude and may not even meet the definition of being combust the Sun.

Addendum (6 July 2021): Lyuben Meshikov brought to my attention an article by Patrizia Nava about cazimi in which she reaches similar conclusions:

The role of latitude in the definition of cazimi
Presented at KIA Conference, Kolkata, January 1st, 2018

A google search also revealed a copy of this article online at https://www.astro.com/astrology/ivccn_article180927_e.htm#_ftn6

It looks like Patrizia Nava has had the same experience with horary charts. Significators that appear cazimi are often disappointing in their outcomes for the querent. The issue is probably that we are not taking latitude into account and thus labeling planets as cazimi when they are really combust.

Addendum (7 July 2021): Further notes from the literature, Bonatti’s understanding of Abu Ma’shar.

Rhetorius and Sahl define ‘cazimi’ or ‘in the heart of the Sun’ as a planet being in the same degree, presumably along the ecliptic, as the Sun. Essentially this is a ‘partile’ conjunction (partile meaning in the same individual degree of the 30 distinct degrees within a sign) of the planet with the Sun. This definition may have to do with the Hellenistic view of each individual degree (the monomoiria) of the zodiac being the smallest region of dignity of one of the seven visible planets.

Abu Ma’shar, in discussing the synodic cycles of the planets relative to the Sun, appears to refer to the distance of planets along the ecliptic, so that ‘cazimi’ means no more that 16′ of arc from the Sun along the ecliptic, except for the planet Venus which has extreme latitudes. Once planets move more than 16′ from the Sun along the ecliptic, they are considered ‘burned’ or combust. For the inferior planets, combustion lasts until they are 7 degrees away from the Sun on the ecliptic. HOWEVER, Abu Ma’shar notes that for VENUS, even when she is cazimi and within 1 minute of arc from the Sun on the ecliptic, the following holds true:

sometimes she will be seen in the east or west while she is still with the sun in 1′, and indeed it is like that when she is at the utmost of her latitude … so when Venus is in this condition of great latitude and visibility she is NOT CALLED ‘burned’ but rather she is called ‘appearing’ until her latitude is below 7 degrees and and she nears the Sun a little bit by latitude; then perhaps she will not be seen, and is called ‘burned’ at that time.” (Dykes, Great Introduction of Abu Ma’Shar, 2020, p.418, emphasis mine)

Is there is a logical inconsistency in Abu Ma’shar’s thinking in the above quote? When Venus is more than 7 degrees of ecliptic longitude or latitude from the Sun, she is not called ‘burned’, but when she is visible at 8 degrees or more of latitude from the body of the Sun and is obviously not in contact with the body of the Sun, she is still called ‘cazimi’. How can a planet be in the heart of the Sun when that planet resides 8 degrees away from the Sun’s body?

On the other hand, we could understand Abu Ma’shar to be indicating that ‘cazimi’ must take into account latitude, as Bonatti understood him to mean. Ma’shar starts by stating that when Venus lies within 1′ of arc from the Sun on the ecliptic but is more than 7 degrees away in latitude, Venus may be visible and thus not combust. When Venus, which is within 1 minute of arc of the Sun on the ecliptic, comes within 7 degrees of the Sun in latitude, then Venus is combust (implying that Venus in not in the heart of the Sun). Only when Venus is within 16′ of arc of the Sun in both ecliptic longitude and ecliptic latitude, can Venus then be considered to be in the heart of the Sun. The later view is how Bonatti understood Ma’shar’s text.

In summary, when Venus is near the Sun and conjoins the Sun within 1 minute of arc on the ecliptic, she can be in one of three conditions, according to Abu Ma’shar:

1) more than 8 degrees of latitude from the Sun (while exactly conjunct the Sun on the ecliptic), Venus is visible and not combust, but is ‘appearing’.

2) less than 7 degrees of latitude from the Sun but more than 16′ of latitude from the Sun (while exactly conjunct the Sun on the ecliptic), Venus is not visible and therefore combust.

3) less than 16′ of latitude from the Sun (while exactly conjunct the Sun on the ecliptic), Venus again becomes visible and can be seen in this ‘cazimi’ state as a dark round dot crossing the brilliant body of the Sun, as in the NASA image above.

ADDENDUM (15 July 2021): Al-Biruni on Cazimi

If I understand al-Biruni correctly, he regards a planet as cazimi (samim) when the projection of the planet’s body onto the ecliptic lies within 16′ of arc from the center of the Sun, regardless of the planet’s latitude (except for Venus).

Like Abu Ma’shar, al-Biruni makes an exception in the case of Venus because of her possible extreme latitude with respect to the ecliptic. To quote from the 1934 translation of al-Biruni by R. Ramsay Wright in discussing the inferior planets in their synodic cycles with the Sun:

“It is necessary to distinguish between Venus and Mercury as regards orientality and occidentality, as has been done between Mars on the one hand and Saturn and Jupiter on the other (astronomers are agreed that no such distinction is necessary between these two planets) for Venus has a very high latitude, and sometimes conjunction [with the Sun] occurs when it has attained its highest north latitude, it then remains visible, so that the expression combust and under the rays cease to be applicable, although the planet is in those positions; similarly at tasmim when the north latitude exceed 7 degrees, it must not be described as samim [cazimi] nor muhtariqah [combust] but simply as accompanying the sun, muqurinah.

Al-Biruni focuses on the northern latitude of Venus because he is an astrologer in the northern hemisphere. South of the equator, Venus with extreme southern latitude would become visible before sunrise when exactly conjunct the Sun on the ecliptic and ” must not be described as samim [cazimi] nor muhtariqah [combust] but simply as accompanying the sun, muqurinah.

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An interesting case of twins born 2 minutes apart

Recently I was reading in post by Michel Ibarra on the FB Traditional Astrology Forum about the charts of twin sisters, one of whom was murdered. The birth times are Rodden rating AA and taken from their birth certificates, so they are probably reasonably accurate.

On 18 September 1966 at about 5:15 AM Valerie Jean Percy was found beaten and stabbed to death in her bed in her family’s Kenilworth mansion. Her father was running for the U.S. Senate at the time of her murder. According to their birth certificates Valerie was born on 10 December 1944 at 5:25 PM PWT in Oakland, CA, just 2 minutes before her twin sister Sharon was born. The two women have very similar birth charts, a significant difference being that Valerie’s Asc lies at 13 Gemini 39 whereas Valerie, born 2 minutes later, has her Asc in a different degree, namely, 14 Gemini 10. Valerie was murdered at 21.77 years of age. Sharon is still alive and has led a productive public life. Are there factors in their birth charts, or are there predictive techniques, that might explain the difference in their life courses?

Valerie’s natal chart. Her sister was born 2 minutes later.

I began by looking at the primary zodiacal directions (Placidus semi-arc, Naibod rate) for both women at age 21. For this purpose I used the natal chart which is at the midpoint of the two births, which were only 2 minutes apart.

The primary directions in effect during 1966 (the year of the murder) were:

Pz MC square natal Moon 7 Feb 1966 Age 21.161

Pz Mercury conjunct natal Sun 21 Apr 1966 Age 21.362

Pz Asc square natal MC 10 Aug 1966 Age 21.664

MURDER 18 Sep 1966 Age 21.77

Pz Saturn oppose natal Sun 1 Oct 1966 Age 21.807

Pz Chiron square natal Mars 6 Oct 1966 Age 21.820

Pz Chiron square natal Uranus 31 Dec 1966 Age 22.055

Because the Sun is hyleg in this chart and also ruler of the 4th house of endings, the primary direction of Saturn opposing the natal Sun in late September – early October of 1966 indicates the risk of death at this time and correlates closely with the murder of one of the twins on 18 September 1966. In other words, Saturn rules the 8th house of death and it applies by primary direction to oppose the natal Sun, which rules the natal 4th, described by Sue Ward as signifying “the end of all things, often termed ‘the end of the matter’, and also the grave.”

Having noticed that the twins had their Ascendants in different degrees, I wondered whether a symbolic direction involving the Ascendant could distinguish why one twin experienced the zodiacal direction of Saturn to the natal Sun (hyleg) in September of 1966 and the other did not. My experience with charts that have such close birth times has been that Ascendant Arc symbolic directions often distinguish the two charts predictively.

As the Matrix Software site explains, the Ascendant arc method of directing a natal chart is calculated as follows: 

“The distance from the natal ascendant to the progressed ascendant (derived from a solar-arc directed MC) is measured. This arc is then applied to all planets in the natal chart in order to arrive at their directed positions, and all house cusps are either directed by the same arc or derived from the directed midheaven.”

If we compare the Ascendant-arc directions of the twins, we find the following:

Valerie has Asc-arc directed Mercury sesqui-square her Ascendant on 24 Sep 1966, within a week of the murder. If she were born just a few seconds before the time on her birth certificate, the perfection of this direction would be exact for the date of her death.
Because she is born two minutes later than her sister, Sharon does not experience the Asc-arc direction of Mercury sesqui-square natal Asc until June of 1967, a full 9 months after the murder.

In comparing the Asc-arc directions for the twins, directed Mercury sesqui-square the natal Ascendant appears to be the distinguishing feature. Mercury rules the natal Ascendant and lies just inside the Placidus 8th cusp. In addition, Mercury conjoins the fixed star Facies, which is associated with violent death. Thus Valerie appears to be at greater risk of a violent death in September of 1966.

Another feature of the Placidus zodiacal directions is that in September of 1966 Sharon’s directed Sun is almost exactly trine (by primary direction) the 11th Placidus cusp of the house of the Good Daimon where Jupiter, the greater benefic, rejoices. In Valerie’s chart this directed Sun trine the 11th Placidus cusp would not perfect until 6 months after her death. Traditionally the 11th house of the Good Daimon (guardian angel) is one of assistance, comfort, safe harbor and relief.

Addendum (5 July 2021): Planetary Hour Sub-periods

As I was comparing Valerie’s chart to that of her sister Sharon (born 2 minutes later), I noticed another feature, besides their ascendants being in distinct degrees of Gemini, that distinguishes the two charts. Both women were born on a Sunday during the 12th hour of the day, which was a Saturn hour. At age 21, the natal lord of the orb is also the lord of the orb of the year, giving Saturn special prominence in the birth charts of both women at this time. By primary direction Saturn advances to oppose the natal Sun at the time of the murder.

In my study of the lord of the orb technique, I have been experimenting with dividing planetary hours, much like the system of fardaria. My method is to divide the duration of a planetary hour by 7 and assign each of the 7 parts to one of the visible planets in Chaldean order (slowest to fastest), starting with the lord of the hour.

Calculating from the natal chart of 10 December 1966 in Oakland, CA, the amount of daylight was 9:29:11 hours (tip of the Sun first appearing on the eastern horizon until the tip and body of the Sun descend below the western horizon), so that each of the daytime planetary hours had a duration of 46.43 minutes. Dividing 47.43 minutes by 7, we find that each of the seven planets during a daytime planetary hour is allotted 6.776 minutes. Sunset occurred at 17:46:34 in this natal chart. Hence, the 12th planetary hour, which belongs to Saturn in this case, can be divided into 7 equal segments as follows:

17:19:26Sun (Valerie born at 17:25 during Sun subperiod)
17:26:13Venus (Sharon born at 17:27 during Venus subperiod)
17:46:34Beginning of Jupiter hour at sunset
If we divide the Saturn hour into 7 parts and assign each part to a visible planet in Chaldean order, Valerie was born during the Sun subperiod of the Saturn hour, and Sharon was born during the Venus subperiod of the Saturn hour. The Sun (Valerie’s subperiod ruler) is hyleg and received the primary direction of the opposition of Saturn at the time of the murder. Venus (Sharon’s subperiod ruler) was not prominent by profection or primary direction at the time of her sister’s death.

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Never get married on a Tuesday

In Spain there is a proverb which goes: “En martes, ni te cases ni te embarques.” (On Tuesdays, neither get married nor embark on a journey.) According to wikipedia: “In Spanish-speaking countries, instead of Friday, Tuesday the 13th (martes trece) is considered a day of bad luck. The Greeks also consider Tuesday (and especially the 13th) an unlucky day.”

Most likely the origin of this superstition about Tuesdays being unlucky has to do with Hellenistic astrology. The Babylonians had assigned each of the visible wandering stars (‘planets’) to a day of the week. Sun got Sun-day; Moon, Monday; Mars, Tuesday; Mercury, Wednesday; Jupiter, Thursday; Venus, Friday; and Saturn, Saturday. The English names for the days preserved the planetary rulers but alluded to the names of Norse gods instead of Greek or Roman gods.

The texts of Hellenistic Greece and the Persian-Arabic astrologers made their way into Europe through Spain, where they were translated into Latin. Images such as the following of the planets ruling each day and hour of the week were familiar to the educated classes of Europe during the Renaissance:

The sequence of planetary hours for each day of the week.

The week begins with the Sun ruling the first hour of daylight on Sunday. In the above diagram you can see that Mars rules the first hour of daylight on Tuesday, the 3rd day of the week. At nightfall (sunset) on Tuesday, Saturn takes over as the first ruler of Tuesday night. The first planet to rule the day, or the night, hours has a special influence over the periods of daylight and nighttime, respectively.

In ancient astrology Mars and Saturn were the two principal malefic planets, causing harm and being inimical to life. Mars was especially dangerous during the daylight hours because the heat of the Sun enhanced the natural fiery nature of Mars, making him more impulsive, aggressive and violent. Saturn was especially harmful during nighttime hours because the coldness of the night enhanced Saturn’s natural tendency to limit, constrict, and chill the life out of living creatives. Perhaps Robert Frost had Mars and Saturn in mind when he wrote his poem “Fire and Ice” which debates whether the world will end in fire or in ice.

The astrological teachings about planetary days and hours and the nature of malefic planets being enhanced by the “sect” (diurnal or nocturnal nature) of the chart apparently got codified in the the Spanish proverb: “En martes, ni te cases ni te embarques.”

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Embolismic Lunation Returns – example of a hellish year

Recently I’ve been experimenting with Placidus’ method of progressing a birth chart via ’embolismic lunations’ (returns of the Sun and Moon to the same phase angle they held in the birth chart).

In reading Martin Gansten’s recent book Annual Predictive Techniques, a particular chart (on page 72) peaked my interest because the native described his year from age 36 to 37 as ‘hellish’. It occurred to me that if Placidus’ method held water, such a year from hell should show up in the embolismic return.

Gansten uses the sidereal zodiac and Alcabitius houses. Placidus uses the tropical zodiac with Placidus houses, so I cast the chart using the parameters of Placidus. The native was born on 18 Dec 1973 at 10:05 EET, 60n27, 22e17.

Chart of a man who experienced a “hellish” year at age 36 as his marriage fell apart due to his wife’s ongoing and severe mental illness.

We can see the potential for marital difficulties in the natal chart. Saturn Rx in Cancer (the sign of its detriment) occupies the 7th of marriage and conjoins its cusp. Ketu (the lunar south node) lies within the orb of Saturn and the two will conjoin by transit within a few weeks of the birth. The Moon rules the 7th cusp and occupies the unfortunate 8th house (loss, crisis, death) where Luna conjoins and is besieged by the outer planets Pluto and Uranus. Moon/Pluto can signify intense emotionality. Moon/Uranus can signify emotion disruptions and potential breakup of the marriage.

We want to know which embolismic return was in effect at age 36, using the formula one embolismic cycle is equivalent to one year of life. The mean synodic cycle of the Moon with respect to the Sun is about 29.532 days. Dividing the length of the tropical year by the lunar cyclce:

365.2422 / 29.532 = 12.37 cycles per year, which is equivalent to 12 embolismic lunations plus 11.2 days

In other words, every tropical year consists of 12 embolismic lunations plus 11.2 days.

At age 36 he will have completed 36 embolismic lunations, which should occur three years after his birth date minus 33 days (subtracting 11.2 days for each year). He was born on 18 Dec 1973 with the Sun and Moon 70deg 22min apart, so three years later would be 18 Dec 1976, and 33 days prior would be around 16 Nov 1976. It turns out that the Sun and Moon were 70deg 22min apart on 16 Nov 1976 at 14:11:10 EET (-2:00). Here is the chart for the embolismic return which corresponds to his year of life beginning at age 36:

Embolismic return corresponding to age 36 when his marriage deteriorated in a ‘hellish’ fashion.

The embolismic chart is ruled by Saturn, which occupies the 6th house (12th of the 7th) and conjoins the 7th cusp. The Moon, which rules the natal 7th, occupies the embolismic 7th and squares Neptune. Jupiter, which rules the natal 12th, is opposed by Mars, the out-of-sect malefic and a planet of separation.

Superimposing the return chart on the natal chart, we get the following.

Embolismic return for age 36 superimposed on the natal chart.

In the superimposed charts, return Venus closely conjoins the natal Ascendant and closely opposes natal Saturn Rx in the 7th, indicating significant problems in intimate relationships. Venus also rules the natal 4th cusp of home and domestic life.

Return Moon, which rules the natal 7th of marriage, lies in the natal 8th and squares return Neptune as well as natal Mercury, ruler of the natal 8th (crisis, loss, death). Mercury also rules the natal 6th, which is the derived 12th of the 7th, indicating the dissolution of the marriage.

Return Sun, which rules Leo in the natal 7th and occupies the unfortunate natal 12th, is on the natal MC, indicating the prominence of marital issues at age 36. Return Sun/Mars/Mercury conjoin in Scorpio and form a quincunx to natal Mars in Aries. In addition, this cluster of return planets in Scorpio opposes return Jupiter in the natal 4th (his domestic life), with Jupiter ruling the natal 12th of misfortune.

It does appear that the embolismic return provides an additional predictive method which can be used with other standard techniques as part of an annual forecast.

Addendum: Online calculator of soli-lunar returns.

The site https://horoscopes.astro-seek.com/calculate-planet-revolutions-returns/ offers the option to calculate soli-lunar returns. The embolismic return is calculated for the birth place. Placidus paired each soli-lunar return after the birth date with a corresponding year of life.

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Embolismic Lunations — Another Example (Alan Leo)

The previous post discussed the idea of Placidus about using ’embolismic lunations’ (Sun-Moon phase angle returns) to progress the natal chart. Placidus mapped each such lunation onto a year of life. To test the method, I have been experimenting with some natal charts with known or carefully rectified birth times. One such chart is that of Alan Leo whose rectified chart can be found on page xvi of his book The Progressed Horoscope (Destiny Books, 1983 edition). Here is Leo’s chart according the Alan Leo himself:

Alan Leo’s natal chart according this his own rectification
Born 7 Aug 1860 in London at 5:52:32 local time (+ 00:00:40)

In the 1905 version of his book, Leo casts the chart for 5:49 AM and shows an apparently unrectified MC of 15 Taurus 52, with an unrectified Ascendant of 27 Leo 39.

Alan Leo died on 30 August 1917 at the age of 57, just 23 days after his birthday that year. Based on his rectified chart, here is the embolismic return of 17 March 1865, which corresponds to his 57th year of life:

This is the embolismic return of 17 March 1865, which corresponds to Alan Leo’s 57th year (1917-1918)

Natally Mars rules the 4th house (end of life) and in the embolismic return Mars rules the Ascendant and disposes the Moon in Scorpio. Return Mars conjoins Uranus at the cusp of the return 8th house of death.

Jupiter, which rules the 8th of death in the natal chart, opposes the return Mars/Uranus/8th cusp conjunction and also semi-sextiles the return Moon/Asc conjunction, which itself is quincunx the return 8th cusp/Mars/Uranus conjunction.

In the return chart Venus rules the 6th of illness and conjoins Pluto at the cusp of the 6th. All in all, the embolismic return suggests significant health problems with the risk of death during the 1917-1918 year.

Addendum: Online calculator of soli-lunar returns.

The site https://horoscopes.astro-seek.com/calculate-planet-revolutions-returns/ offers the option to calculate soli-lunar returns. The embolismic return is calculated for the birth place. Placidus paired each soli-lunar return after the birth date with a corresponding year of life.

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Embolismic Lunations

Recently I was reading Cooper’s 1814 translation of Placidus’ Primum Mobile and going over the charts in the section Thirty Remarkable Nativities in which Placidus discusses the chart of King Charles V of Germany (23 Feb 1500 – 21 Sep 1558). Even though the king was born in Ghent, Belgium, presumably at 3:39 AM local time according to Placidus, he casts the chart for The Hague in Holland. Placidus shows how his method of primary directing planets reveals the date of death of the king. In the discussion of the king’s demise, Placidus also makes use of the method of “embolismic lunations” as a predictive technique, which he explains as follows:

Embolismic lunations are a calendrical reference to an ’embolismic year’, which is one that contains 13 lunations instead of the typical 12, due to the insertion of an ’embolism’. The site https://digital.library.mcgill.ca/ms-17/apparatus.php?page=Glossary defines ’embolism’ like this:

“Because the Julian solar calendar is 365 days long, and 12 lunar months of 29½ days total 354 days, the age of the Moon on any given calendar date increases by 11 days each year. When the accumulation tops 30 days, the maximum length of a calculated lunar month, an additional 13th lunar month is deemed to be inserted within the calendar year. This additional intercalated lunation is called an “embolism” and a year with 13 lunations is ’embolismic’.”

Astrologically speaking, an ’embolismic lunation’ is simply a return of the Moon to the same phase-angle or relative position it held with respect to the Sun at the moment of birth. On average, the Sun and the Moon return to their natal phase angle every 29.530589 days. In other words, the mean period of the Sun-Moon phase angle return is 29 days, 12 hours, 44 minutes. However, owing to the eccentricity of the Moon’s orbit around Earth and slightly to the Earth’s elliptical orbit around the Sun, the period from one Sun-Moon phase-angle return to the next can vary by up to seven hours. It is possible to calculate dates of Sun-Moon phase angle returns in an Excel spreadsheet by repeatedly adding 29.530589 days to the birth date and then adjusting the chart for match the exact phase angle at birth. Fortunately, some astrological software offers phase-angle returns as an option.

According to DeVore’s Encyclopedia of Astrology, Placidus “applied the term Embolismic Lunation to a Figure cast for the moment of the Moon’s return to the same relation to the Sun that it occupied at birth. It was made the basis for judgment concerning the affairs and conditions of the ensuing year of life.” (italics mine)

If I understand the technique correctly, you first identify the embolismic return for the start of a given year of life (the annual solar return date). The embolismic lunar return so identified then maps onto that entire single year of life, and it can be progressed at a rate of one tropical year (365.24219 days) equals one synodic lunar cycle (29.530589 days), which calculates to be 12.368267 days of life during the solar return year for each day of the synodic lunar month. In other words 1 day of the embolismic return cycle equals12.3682668 days of life during the solar return year, which (doing the division) is equivalent to a progression rate of 0.080852073.

To summarize my understanding of the technique, each synodic lunar period of 29 days 12 hours 44 minutes 2.8 seconds is regarded as equivalent to a tropical year of life. Doing the division of a year by a synodic month, we find that there are 12.368 ’embolismic lunations’ during each tropical year. The first embolismic lunation after birth corresponds to age 1 and the second year of life; the second return, to age 2 and the third year of life; and so on. The embolismic returns can be read in very much the same way as we read solar return charts, both as stand-alone charts and also in comparison with the natal chart. Themes highlighted in this way are likely to play out during the year of life corresponding to the embolismic return. Basically, emobilsmic returns are a form of progressing the natal chart by synodic lunar months measured by repeating natal Sun-Moon phase angles.

Let’s look an an example. The child actress Heather O’Rouke (1975 – 1988) died at age 12 of sepsis and cardiac arrest. She has a Rodden rated AA chart and was born 27 Dec 1975 at 00:28 AM in San Diego, CA. She died on February 1, 1988 at the age of 12.0988 years (36 days after her 12th birthday). As mentioned in the above paragraph, 36 days of life (dividing by 12.36826) corresponds to 2.9 days of an embolismic return.

Using Alphee Lavoie’s software, I calculated her embolismic return at the time of her demise to have occurred on 15 Dec 1976 at 8:22:42 PM (tz 8) at her birthplace.

The phase return lunation cycle corresponding to the period 27 Dec 1987 to 27 Dec 1988 is the phase angle return of 15 Dec 1976, which lasts until 14 Jan 1977. Because she died 36 days after her 1987 birthday, we calculate 36 days divided by 12.368, giving 2.9 days after 15 Dec 1976, which brings us to the span 17 Dec – 18 Dec, 1976 as the ‘progressed’ embolismic lunation period for the date of her death. The resulting ‘progressed’ embolismic chart looks like this:

The above embolismic chart covers the 12.37-day period from 25 to 37 days following her solar return of 1987 when she turned 12 years old. It cautions that she is in a difficult period, especially because the Moon (to whom the return belongs) almost exactly squares a debilitated Saturn on the Ascendant of the return.

Return Saturn Rx in Leo (a sign of its detriment) rules the return 6th of health problems and conjoins the return Ascendant. It is a night chart, so Saturn is the out-of-sect malefic in the embolismic return chart. Her natal Ascendant ruler Venus applies to oppose Saturn and has just completed a square with Uranus, which is angular conjunct the IC. Uranus here could indicate unexpected disruptions in home and family.

Next let’s superimpose the embalismic chart on her natal chart.

Superimposing the charts, we see that lunation Jupiter, which rules the natal 6th and the embalismic 8th, occupies the natal 8th and closely conjoins the natal lunar south node, suggesting significant and potentially life-threatening health problems. The return Moon in Scorpio applies to oppose return Jupiter in the natal 8th house.

A value of the embalismic lunation is its ability to highlight the major emphasis for a given month of the solar return year.

There is a lot of detail in this post. If you notice any errors in my calculations, please let me know so I can correct them.

In summary, there are 12 soli-lunar returns in each year with a remainder of about 11 days. Placidus had the idea of equating the soli-lunar returns after birth with years of life. This is a type of progression which is similar in conception to the modern idea of true tertiary progressions.

Addendum: Online calculator of soli-lunar returns.

The site https://horoscopes.astro-seek.com/calculate-planet-revolutions-returns/ offers the option to calculate soli-lunar returns. The embolismic return is calculated for the birth place. Placidus paired each soli-lunar return after the birth date with a corresponding year of life.

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When is the Moon truly void-of-course?

A recent horary chart posted by Lynn Holt in a Facebook horary group featured a void of course Moon, yet the outcome was favorable for the querent. Lynn kindly gave permission to reproduce her chart in this blog post.

The background for the horary question was that the querent had an idea for an article which she had not yet written. She send an abstract of her idea to a publisher to see if they would like her proposal and offer to have her write an article about the topic. Lynn adds, “It’s a completely new topic for her so she was a little worried that she might not be able to pull it off.” The querent’s specific horary question was, “Will the abstract be accepted?” Here is the horary chart:

Qurent has an idea for an article. She sends her proposal to a publisher and asks the astrologer: “Will my abstract be accepted [for publication]?”

It is a Venus day during a Moon hour. The Moon is slow in motion and the last aspect Luna perfected was a square to Mars, from which she is now separating. Lilly defines ‘separation’ (CA 110) as “Separation, it is in the first place, when two Planets are departed but six minutes distance from each other.” (italics mine).

Because the Moon is separating from Mars and is NOT within orb of applying to any other planet in with chart, the Moon is considered “void of course” about which Lilly writes (CA 112): ” A Planet is void of course, when he is separated from a Planet, nor doth forthwith, during his being in that Sign, apply to any other: This is most usually in the Moon; in judgments doe you carefully observe whether she be void of course yea or no; you shall seldom see a businesse goe handsomely forward when she is so.” (bold and italics mine).

Nonetheless, Lilly informs us that a void-of-course Moon can perform when in the domicile or exaltation of a benefic planet: Taurus, Cancer, Sagittarius or Pisces (CA 122). In this chart the Moon lies in Pisces, the home of Jupiter and exaltation of Venus, so Luna can “perform” in this part of the zodiac even when void of course. Thus, the astrologer need not be concerned in this case that the void of course Moon likely indicates a negative outcome.

There is yet another reason not to be concerned about the void of course Moon in this chart, namely, the partile aspect between the Moon and Mars, in which Mars receives the Moon by term, face and triplicity (Mars is one of three triplicity rulers of water signs). According to Lilly, a partile aspect between significators is a strong indication that the matter will definitely be concluded in a manner favorable or unfavorable to the querent, depending on the nature of the aspect and the planets involved. Lilly writes:

Partill aspect is when two Planets are exactly so many degrees from each other as make a perfect aspect: as if Mercury be in nine degrees of Aries, and Jupiter in nine degrees of Leo, this is a Partill Trine aspect: So Sun in one degree of Taurus, and Moon in one degree of Cancer, make a Partill Sextile, and this is a strong sign or argument for performance of anything, or that the matter is neer hand concluded when the aspect is so partill, and signifies good; and it’s as much a sign of present evill when mischief is threatened.” (CA 106-107, highlighting mine)

The above discussion raises an interesting question. What if, as in this chart, the Moon is void-of-course because it is separating from the planet with the greatest ecliptic longitude in the chart and not apply to any other planet, but at the same time the Moon is in a partile major aspect with the planet from which is is most recently separating? Does the fact that a partile aspect is “a strong sign or argument for performance of anything” override the suggestion by the void of course Moon that “you shall seldom see a business go handsomely forward when she is so”?

In this case the business did go handsomely forward, and the outcome was that the abstract was accepted on May 26th, seven weeks after the horary question was asked. Where can we see this outcome in the chart?

Various astrologers took different approaches to delineating this horary question. My own approach is to start with the 12th part of the Ascendant degree. The Asc at 13 Pisces 31′ has its 12th part in Aquarius, the 6th whole sign from the Ascendant (the querent is worried about writing an article about a new topic and whether she will be able to pull it off). The ruler of Aquarius is Saturn in the 5th house of creative ideas (if I recall correctly, John Frawley uses the 5th house for creative projects like books, which are offspring of the querent’s mind). The 12th part suggests that the astrologer select Saturn to signify the abstract which describes her creative idea for an article.

The presence of Jupiter, the benefic of the diurnal sect in a diurnal chart, in Aquarius, the sign of the 12th part of the Ascendant, is favorable. Jupiter also rules the Pisces 7th house, which can symbolize the business deal she is trying to conclude, or the person with whom she is negotiating. Jupiter is about to receive a trine from Mars in the 10th (the business enterprise, in this case the publishing house), and Mars rules the 3rd house of written communications.

Mars occupies an Air sign and Jupiter is a ruler of the Air triplicity, so Jupiter receives Mars in one of Jupiter’s dignities. Mars is quite strong and dignified in this chart, being in the angular 10th house and fortified by a trine from Jupiter and a sextile from benefic Venus. Mars also received a square from the Moon, but the Moon occupies several of Mars’ dignifies. If we take Mars to signify the querent’s written communication with the 10th house publisher, then the dignified and powerful status of Mars in the 10th suggests that her document got the publisher’s attention.

If we take Saturn to represent the creative idea described in her document and Mercury, ruler of the 10th, to signify the publishing house, the Mercury applies to sextile Saturn in a little less than 2 degrees. Mercury and Saturn are in mutual reception by triplicity, which strengthens the sextile. We can conclude that the publisher (Mercury) will accept her abstract (Saturn). Mercury applies to Saturn from a Cardinal Sign and a Succedent House, which could mean just under 2 weeks, or at most just under 2 months.

Often a significator applying from a Cardinal sign and Succedent house suggests weeks, but in the case the VOC Moon suggests a longer time frame. Masha’allah writes about horary charts: “… if you found the Lord of the Ascendant and the Moon void in course, joining themselves to no one, foretell the slowness of the matter and its prolonging…” (italics mine, Dykes trans. of The Book of Nine Judges, 2011, p.687).

There are other arguments in favor of her idea being accepted by the publisher. The Moon’s North Node, which Lilly regarded as of the nature of benefic Jupiter, applies to conjoin the MC, suggesting an increase in her professional success (in less than a degree and a half). Judith Hill in her book on the lunar nodes associates the North Node with power, fame, self-accrual, material gain and general good luck.

In addition, the dispositor of the Part of Fortune in Leo is the exalted Sun, which applies to sextile Mars (her written communication) in 1 degree 39 minutes, again suggesting that material good fortune meets her written proposal in less than 2 weeks, or at most less than 2 months.

Note that the Moon’s last aspect was a conjunction with Jupiter, benefic of sect, and the Moon’s next aspect before turning void-of-course was a square to Mars, thus Moon tranferred the light of Jupiter to Mars just before the question was asked and remained in partile square to Mars at the time of the horary question.
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Volcanic eruptions and geodetic equivalence charts

In the previous post I discussed geodetic equivalence charts which were popularized by Sepharial in his 1925 text on the subject. Much of the evidence he cites to justify the technique has to do with volcanic eruptions, so when Mount Nyiragongo erupted at about 17:00 GMT on 22 May 2021, I decided to look at the geodetic chart for the event.

The basic assumption of geodetic equivalence is that the longitude of the Greenwich Meridian, which humanity uses to standardize time zones around the world, is symbolically equivalent to 0 degrees Aries and that all locations on Earth can be assigned as geodetic equivalents of longitude. The word “geodetic” refers to the science of geodesy which attempts to accurately measure and understand the Earth’s geometric shape, orientation in space, and gravity field. The map below by Linda Johnson of the School of Evolutionary Astrology illustrates the concept of geodetically equivalent meridians of longitude around the globe:

Image from http://schoolofevolutionaryastrology.com/forum/images/GeodeticMap-Linda-Jonson.pdf
In the above map, note how the meridian of the very early degrees of Taurus pass through the location of the Mount Nyiragongo volcano.

The coordinates of the volcanic lava lake are 01s31’09”, 29e15’15”. The meridian passing through the volcano has a geodetic equivalent longitude of about 01Taurus24′.

Above image from google maps

Here is the geodetic equivalence chart for the eruption of the volcano at the site of its lava lake. Note the extreme angularity of the longitude of the planet Pluto, within 1 minute of arc from the 7th cusp. In mundane astrology Pluto has come to symbolize violent dramatic events related to tremendously powerful forces.

According to Aljazeera, “The military governor of North Kivu province, of which Goma is the capital, confirmed the eruption of the Nyiragongo volcano at around 7:00pm (17:00 GMT).”
Note the angular position of Pluto in this geodetic chart for the eruption of the volcano.

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Geodetic Astro-Mapping

Currently I’m taking an online course about astro-mapping, given by Spanish astrologer Gloria Roca Riera, DFAstrolS. Today we discussed geodetic charts (fixed locality astrology based on geodetic equivalence of ecliptic longitude), which I’ve never made much use of and have always felt somewhat skeptical about, largely because it seems so arbitrary, Anglo-centric and colonialistic. In his 1925 text on geodetic equivalents British astrologer Sepharial, aka Walter Gorn Old (March 20, 1864 – December 23, 1929), writes on page 11: “All counts are made from the meridian of Greenwich, which by universal consent is the standard for the notation of time values and longitudes.”

The choice of the Greenwich meridian is rather modern and somewhat arbitrary. Authors Wheatley and Upton note: “Currently the Prime Meridian line, defined in Geodetic Astrology as 0° Aries, is the Greenwich Meridian line, which was established in 1885, when an international Prime Meridian, passing through London’s Greenwich Observatory was officially adopted by 25 countries as a part of an agreement which established Standard Time. The Prime Meridian created a longitudinal navigational reference system. At the time that this was adopted, Sepharial (Dr Walter Gorn-Old) was in his twenties, and would naturally have been caught up in this international debate, and it was during this momentous time that he was devising his version of the Geodetic World Map.”

The wikipedia entry on locational astrology states (emphasis mine):

“An important systematic approach to astrogeography was developed by various astrologers such as Sepharial (Walter Gorn Old) in England, and A.M. Grimm in Germany. Both these systems assume that the Greenwich Meridian in metropolitan London has a 0° Aries fixed local MC, leaving the various regions of the globe to correspond with the 12 signs of the zodiac. … The Canadian astrologer L. Edward Johndro also worked with this method at various points throughout the 1930s and later years, and vacillated between the starting reference point at Greenwich and one near the greater pyramids of Egypt…”

Image from https://schoolofevolutionaryastrology.com/forum/index.php?topic=343.0 posted by Steve of the School of Evolutionary Astrology on 03 Nov 2010.
Steve comments regarding this image: “This is based on the system developed by the astrologer Edward Johndro.  It correlates astro signs with geographical zones around the earth.  Jeffrey [Wolf Green] considered this an important element in EA work. He also taught that Johndro himself kept going back and forth on whether the Aries point was at Greenwich in England, or 30 degrees to the west. Apparently almost on his death bed, Johndro changed his mind one last time.  Jeffrey taught that in his experience sometimes events correlate to one of those start points, at other times to the other.  He had no explanation of why, simply that was what he had found through observation and correlation.  He found this system very accurate in predicting Earth events, like volcanos, earthquakes, tsunamis, etc.” Another geodetic map by Linda Johnson was posted at this same site.

As in Jeffrey Wolf Green’s remarks about the usefulness of geodetic equivalence in the prediction of earthquakes, Sepharial in his 1925 text also reports that, using this technique, he found that “there was never any great earthquake or physical disturbance of the Earth which was not the direct effect of the interaction of the planets in regard to the Earth as a centre” (p. 38). Sepharial gives the following explanation of the method:

from page 38 of Sepharial’s The Theory of Geodetic Equivalents (1925)

Sepharial offers several case examples to demonstrate the geodetic equivalence technique. For example, on page 36 of his 1925 text he describes his trip in 1892 to a Theosophical Society meeting in Madras, India, at longitude 81 East, which is the geodetic equivalent of the position of his natal Uranus, which opposes his natal Ascendant. Sepharial tells us that in that location, with his natal Uranus conjunct the geodetic MC, “the activities of the Theosophical Society, which has its headquarters at Madras, assumed a crisis in which I was very closely involved and from which I emerged by a serious nervous breakdown.” He also notes that at the same time his directed natal Moon was squaring natal Uranus. (The only “directed” Moon square Uranus, which I could find during that period, was a tertiary progressed Moon square natal Uranus on 21 January 1891.)

Here is Sepharial’s natal chart (bottom left) and his geodetic equivalent chart for Madras, India (upper right). Note how Uranus conjoins the MC in the geodetic chart.

Sepharial’s natal Uranus conjoins the MC of his geodetic equivalent chart in Madras, India.

To see whether a current example would work, I decided to cast a chart related to the current Palestinian-Israeli conflict. My hypothesis was that problematic planets would be angular in the geodetic equivalence chart for the transits at the time this conflict heated up.

Looking at the timeline for the current conflict, I settled on 10 May 2021 as a pivotal day. Wikipedia describes the events of that day as follows:

“A mosque spokesman stated that major clashes broke out after Israeli police attempted to evacuate the compound, where many Palestinians sleep over in Ramadan, adding that the evacuation was intended to allow access to Israelis. More than 300 Palestinians were wounded as Israeli police stormed the mosque compound. Palestinians threw rocks, firecrackers, and heavy objects, while Israeli police fired stun grenades, tear gas, and rubber bullets at worshippers. The storming came ahead of a Jerusalem Day flag march by Jewish nationalists through the Old City. At least 215 Palestinians were injured, 153 of whom were hospitalised. Militants in Gaza fired rockets into Israel the following night.”

Here is the chart for the transits of 10 May 2021 at mid-day in Jerusalem (lower left) and the geodetic equivalent chart for the same transits (upper right).

Note that Saturn (squared by Uranus and the Moon at the MC) almost exactly conjoins the Dsc in the geodetic chart. In addition, Saturn is approaching a station and will turn Rx at the exact degree of the geodetic Descendant on 23 May 2021.

It is impressive that transiting Saturn will station Rx on 23 May 2021 at 13 Aquarius 31′, the exact position of the fixed geodetic Descendant. Transiting Saturn (a symbol of the structure of society and conservative forces of control and repression) on the geodetic 7th cusp (open enemies, conflicts) squares transiting Uranus (upheaval, revolt, desire for independence), which is prominently placed near the MC of the geodetic chart.

Astrologer Steve Cozzi in his book Planets in Locality (1988) explains: “When a natal or transiting planet is conjunct or in opposition to the MC, IC or any of the ascending/descending points [Asc/Dsc], then at that locality on Earth an event corresponding to the nature of the particular planet(s) will take place” (p.180). We should watch the news from Israel on 23 May 2021 to see how Saturn turning stationary Rx exactly opposite the degree of the geodetic Ascendant of Jerusalem plays out in the unfolding of the current conflict. In the transit chart for Jerusalem at the moment of Saturn’s station on 23 May 2021, transiting Jupiter is almost exactly conjunct the Descendant of the transit chart. At the same moment, in the geodetic chart for Jerusalem, Saturn is exactly on the Descendant.

Addendum (22 May 2021):

Both sides agreed to a ceasefire on Thursday, 20 May 2021, and it went into effect on Friday 21 May 2021. Here is the ephemeris showing the position of transiting Saturn on those dates:

Below is the chart for the moment Saturn turns Rx in Jerusalem on 23 May 2021. Note the position of transiting Jupiter on the 7th cusp.

Saturn makes a station as it turns Rx at 12:18:58 pm EEDT in Jerusalem on 23 May 2021. Jupiter in Pisces on the 7th cusp may symbolize the current ceasefire.

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Pushing management, power and nature in horary

A fellow astrologer recently asked me a question about a horary (Chart 51) in my 1998 text. The question was asked by my editor Tom about an advertisement he was writing. Tom wanted to know whether his superiors at the publishing house would approve the ad he had written and use it in their advertising campaign. He asked the question on 5 June 1990 at 10:52 AM CDT in St. Paul, MN. Part of his concern was that the publisher would need to pay astrological journals to publish the ad, and he wasn’t sure whether his boss would want to cover that expense. Here is the horary chart:

Tom asked, “Will the ad fly?

My colleague wondered whether in this chart the Moon, being in the via combusta and peregrine and in its fall in Scorpio, would be able to function to effect a positive outcome. Indeed, the Moon looks in bad shape.

In addition, the question was asked on a Mars day during a Moon hour, and there is no relationship between the hour ruler Moon and the Ascendant ruler Sun (except perhaps that the Moon lies in the decan of the Sun in Scorpio). Furthermore, the ruler of the 7th, Saturn, which signifies the astrologer, is Retrograde and essentially cadent. This last point may not be too relevant because Tom was acting both as the querent (House 1) and the astrology (House 7), and Saturn is dignified in its own domicile and is conjunct the Part of Fortune.

The Sun signifies Tom, the querent. He took Venus, ruler of the 3rd of documents and communications, to represent the ad he had written. Because Venus (the ad) was well-dignified, Tom felt that the success of his ad was likely.

Venus, ruler of the 3rd house, lies in its own sign, triplicity and term, is angular conjunct the MC, is fast in motion, and by Lilly’s 5-degree rule is considered a 10th house planet. These factors strongly suggested that his employer would approve the ad.

With regard to the publisher paying a magazine to publish the ad, Tom reasoned that Venus ruled the 10th (his employer), that Mercury ruled the 11th (his employer’s money), Saturn ruled the 7th (the magazine which he would contract with to run the ad), and Jupiter ruled the 8th (the money of the magazine). Because Mercury (his boss’s money) is mutually applying to trine Saturn (the astrological magazine) in just under 3 degrees, Tom reasoned that his boss would approve the ad within 3 days, which is what happened.

My colleague recently pointed out that the fallen Moon in Scorpio would oppose Mercury before Mercury could perfect the trine with Saturn. Wouldn’t the opposition to Mercury by the Moon constitute a prohibition, which would prevent the matter from perfecting?

Looking over the chart, I realized that the Moon is not in such bad shape as it might initially appear. Although the Moon is in a fallen state, it had dignity as a participating triplicity ruler of Scorpio, so it cannot be said to be truly peregrine. In addition, the Moon is angular and therefore powerful conjunct the I.C. Even if we were to regard the Moon as peregrine, its state is improved by the condition of its dispositor Mars, which is dignified in Aries and in its own face or decan, and also traveling faster than average. Mars is also fortified by a sextile from the 10th house Sun.

Furthermore, the Moon’s last aspect was a trine from Jupiter in Cancer, the sign of his exaltation, and the 11th (the house of Jupiter’s joy). The Moon receives Jupiter in her domicile Cancer, which is to say that Jupiter “pushes the Cancerian nature” of the Moon back to the Moon, Jupiter’s dispositor, which greatly enhances the condition of the Moon. In addition, Jupiter in the sign of his own exaltation “pushes his exalted dignity or power,” further enhancing the Moon’s condition and enabling the Moon to bring about the result desired by the querent. Fincally, since Jupiter represents the magazine’s money and Mercury signifies the publisher’s money, Jupiter “pushes the management” of concluding the deal between the publisher and the magazine onto the Moon, which transfers the light from Jupiter to Mercury. It is also helpful that Mercury occupies the sign of exaltation of the Moon, and Jupiter occupies the domicile of the Moon, which receives both of these significators.

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