The Astrology of the Giffords Shooting

The Tower, from the Haindl Tarot.

When an event is as shocking and tragic as last Saturday’s shooting spree in Arizona, we call it “senseless,” and yet, we try to make some sense of it, to find some meaning.

Astrology is uniquely suited as a code to decipher hidden messages. If there is any meaning to be found at all in a senseless act of violence, the key is to find the “right” charts.

Typically, we start by looking at the charts for the individuals involved. The temptation is to start with Jared Lee Loughner, the perpetrator, and Congresswoman Gabrielle Giffords, his alleged assassination target. Although I agree that these charts are significant and did look at them, my initial reaction was to wonder why we should assign more importance to a member of Congress than to the six people who died in the attack or the other 13 who were seriously wounded. On that premise, I began my investigation with a simple chart for the event itself.

According to press reports, the shooting occurred at 10:10 a.m. This puts the Moon exactly on the Ascendant, by degree and minute, at 7°06′ Pisces. In mundane charts, the Moon represents the people. It also signifies crowds, women, and what the people focus their attention on. The first house, meanwhile, represents the country. We might call it the “state of the union.”

I really didn’t need this uncanny alignment to tell me what I already suspected intuitively, which was that the message here is about the country in general and not about Giffords or the mental state of the assailant, who by all reports is deranged.

Still, I was curious about what synchronicity brought these two together and was hardly surprised to find the cardinal T-square strongly implicated. Giffords has natal Mars at 4 degrees Cancer, in a square with Uranus at 4 Libra. Loughner, meanwhile, has natal Mars at 10 Aries (retrograde), square Neptune at 7 Capricorn.

As you may recall, the cardinal T-square played out over summer 2010 in the first degrees of Aries, Libra, and Capricorn. In 2011, the T-square will take place a few degrees later, but still in the first decanate of the cardinal signs. That the charts for Loughner and Giffords include all four cardinal signs in a close square, each with an outer planet (broad, social trends) aspecting a personal planet, tells us that they are part of a much bigger story.

Looking further into the chart for the shooting, we find the Sun and Mars in Capricorn in the 11th house, which is associated with elected bodies such as Parliament and Congress, square Saturn on the 8th house cusp. The Sun corresponds to persons of note, while Mars represents events such as terrorist attacks. Saturn signifies high-profile funerals and “public sorrow.” The eighth house, of course, is associated with death.

Perhaps the biggest clue, however, lies in the tight conjunction of Uranus and Jupiter in the first house. Uranus is the rebel and rabble-rouser, and is associated with political protest and riots. Jupiter represents bankers, the national wealth, and the justice system. Among those killed was a federal judge.

Taking the analysis a step further, I compared the chart for the shooting with the natal chart for the United States (Sibly). Essentially, this creates a transit chart for the United States at the exact moment of the event. Those of you who follow the U.S. chart already know what most of those transits are. For example, we’ve known that Neptune currently is transiting the U.S. Moon at 27 degrees Aquarius. We’ve also known that Jupiter and Uranus, which feature large in the shooting chart, are approaching the cusp of the fourth house at 1 degree Aries in the Sibly chart, which also was a key T-square degree last summer.

If we look at it in reverse, the Sibly Uranus at 8 degrees Gemini is on the fourth-house cusp (IC) of the shooting chart, and thus we have a two-way incidence of Uranus on the IC. Not that you need to be an astrologer to know that the public is in a rebellious mood, but what this tells us is that action is about to follow thought. I don’t expect a rash of copycat murders and the sudden targeting of members of Congress, but I’ve written all along that as Uranus reaches a closer square to Pluto, there will be violent rioting, and it likely will be against the government.

As for Loughner, much has been revealed over the past few days about his state of mind. One theory about his motive for targeting Giffords is that she blew off a question he asked at a political event in 2007. The question was nonsensical; Giffords probably had no idea what he was talking about and dismissed it as a crazy rant. But Loughner felt ignored and held a serious grudge.

A growing number of people are angry with their elected representatives for ignoring them. Politicians make all kinds of promises to get elected and then promptly ally themselves with their corporate donors and leave the voters to fend for themselves. When the political uprising begins, how many more people will fire into a crowd? And how many cops will fire back?

My conclusion, looking at these charts, is that the Giffords shooting may be a shot over the bow.

What I find infinitely more disturbing are the reports that Loughner was dabbling in astral travel. In an interview with Mother Jones, a friend speaks of Loughner’s obsession with “lucid dreaming” and his belief that he could fly. It’s hard to pass this off as more evidence of mental illness when it’s exactly the kind of thing we talk about here on RealAstrologers.

As human consciousness evolves, lucid dreaming likely will be a common experience, along with past-life visions and other shifts in our perception of time. Was Loughner truly tapped into this? Or was he just deluded? Maybe both?

Mental illness falls within the twelfth house, which in modern astrology is ruled by Neptune and Pisces – the Ascendant in the chart for the shooting. When we travel on the astral plane, we’re in the realm of Neptune, and it’s not all angels and rainbows – especially not in a time of so much collective fear and anger. How many people are in mental hospitals because they played around with this stuff without being adequately grounded?

In addition to being a bellwether for public unrest, the Giffords shooting may be a warning that the awakening of human consciousness will not be without attendant dangers and that it’s not for the weak-minded.

Aquarius, the sign of astrologyPat