We start right out Monday with inconjuncts from the Sun to Mars and Mercury to Saturn. Make sure you’re hearing what the other person really said and vice versa. There’s huge potential here for mixed and messed-up messages. When we get angry and frustrated, chemicals are released in our bodies that unfortunately don’t disappear on the spot when we find out 20 minutes later that what we believed we saw or heard isn’t true.
In my documentary class last quarter, we watched an episode of This American Life in which an Iraqi filmmaker living in the United States tries to understand American beliefs about the war. The piece ends with his observation:
Everybody hears what is easier for them to believe.
Pisces, you’ll recall, isn’t the Fish but the Fishes. There are two of them, and they swim in different directions. “Belief” is a double-edged sword. Used positively, with intent, it can create miracles. Used in ignorance, it produces something like you see in this mini-documentary.
It so happened that I watched another documentary this weekend that featured a lesson about beliefs, also involving war. The lesson was from the unlikeliest of sources, former Secretary of Defense Robert McNamara, who was scorned by many for escalating U.S. involvement in Vietnam. The film offers not only a very different perspective, but the reflections of a man at the end of his life looking back on decisions that resulted in the deaths of hundreds of thousands of human beings.
“Belief and seeing, they’re both often wrong,” McNamara says. Specifically, he refers to the Gulf of Tonkin incident, which he says the Johnson administration misread. “We were wrong. But we had in our minds a mindset that led to that action. And it carried such heavy costs.”
“We see what we want to believe,” filmmaker Errol Morris interjects.
More than 20 hours of interviews went into the making of The Fog of War: Eleven Lessons from the Life of Robert S. McNamara, which won an Oscar for best documentary in 2003. Part of what makes the film so riveting is the haunting music of Philip Glass. Morris and Glass, both Aquarians, worked in close collaboration.
In an interview with Senses of Cinema, Morris discusses the ambiguity that his film brings to McNamara’s character. The public may not want to see their leaders this way, but they should, he says. “They should see the world in complex terms. I prefer the word ‘complex’ to ‘ambiguous.'”
Therein lies the dichotomy of Pisces thinking. There is faith, and there is blind faith. Many people, when confronted with ambiguities and complexities, rely on faith. But when taken to the extreme, it’s blind faith.
With Mercury retrograde in Pisces, it’s time to examine and question our beliefs. You might even want to question your belief in astrology … starting with the belief that it’s a belief. I would love to do a man-on-the-street interview and ask people whether they believe in astronomy. Or psychology.
Speaking of Pisces and former defense secretaries, Dick Cheney is in the news this morning following a heart transplant. Yeah, I know, I can just hear the jokes: “Cheney finally gets a heart,” etc. This man has been a real puzzle to me and to astrologers in general. Somewhere I read one astrologer’s theory that there are two kinds of Aquarius – those ruled by Saturn, the traditional ruler, and those ruled by Uranus, the modern ruler. According to this astrologer, Cheney falls in the first group. Sorry, but that’s not a satisfactory explanation. And anyway, the bigger puzzle is Cheney’s Pisces Moon. I’m an Aquarius with a Pisces Moon. It’s almost enough to make you stop believing in astrology … except that there really are some good explanations.
Cheney is a Rising Virgo. That gives him a sixth-house Sun, which in some ways functions as a Virgo. Aquarius and Virgo are inconjunct signs – they have nothing in common. So right away you have a conflicted personality. Add to that the Pisces Moon, and you’ve got an individual of exceptional complexity and ambiguity.
My theory about Cheney is that his Pisces Moon is way too sensitive for the time and place in which he was born. Men in our culture have a particularly tough time integrating a Pisces Moon, so they tend to overcompensate to protect their soft underbelly. Apparently he started drinking at an early age; escapism through drugs and alcohol is a weakness associated with Pisces. His heart troubles also began when he was relatively young, which isn’t surprising to an astrologer. Planets in the natal sixth house often indicate inherent physical weaknesses. The Sun rules the heart, and Cheney’s Sun is afflicted by a tight square to Saturn in Taurus.
So here you have hypersensitive Moon in Pisces, forced to live side by side with a Sun-Saturn square that points not only to a weak heart but to unresolved father issues and sweeping material insecurity. It’s interesting that Cheney’s ancestors were French Huguenots – a sect persecuted by the Church in the 16th and 17th centuries. Pisces Moon often indicates past-life connections, and this is the karmic baggage Cheney is carrying. It’s enough to make a Cold Warrior drink and drug himself into oblivion.
Of course, being an astrologer, I immediately ran to look at the chart for his transplant. It’s astounding! For starters, last Thursday’s New Moon conjunct Uranus and Mercury was in his eighth house of death and regeneration. The eighth house also is associated with surgery. On Saturday, when the transplant was performed, the conjunction of Uranus and the Sun (ruler of the heart) was exact. Cheney’s lunar South Node is at 2 degrees Aries, the degree of the New Moon, which also was trine his natal Pluto.
Of course, Mercury and Mars (ruler of surgery) were retrograde – Mars is in his first house, within a few degrees of his Ascendant. Is that going to work to his advantage? According to press reports, he’s been waiting nearly two years for a heart – in other words, since the cardinal T-square in 2010. At the height of that configuration, Cheney was in the hospital being fitted with an artificial blood-pumping device.
Heart transplants must be performed when the organ is available, so the timing wasn’t within his control. Ironically, Dick Cheney is now one of the biggest guinea pigs ever in our cosmic astrology lab! We’re going to learn a lot by the success of this operation, his rate of recovery, and any changes in beliefs that result from his near-death experience. Maybe he’ll even end up believing in astrology.
Back to this week’s aspects, the Sun squares Pluto on Thursday, providing a preview of what we might expect when the Uranus-Pluto square is exact starting this summer. Revolution and crackdown are becoming a way of life. Depending on where this square falls in your chart, you may experience your own version of rebellion and harsh response by an authority figure. Don’t push your luck with your boss or parents.
On Saturday, we have another pair of inconjuncts, this time from Mars to Uranus and Venus to Saturn. There’s an explosion waiting to happen, but for some reason, the fuse won’t light. Stifled arguments may come out in passive-aggressive ways. Venus and Saturn are more about feelings of isolation and loneliness, but this should be fairly easy to handle with a nice hot bath or a walk in the park. If there’s no one to buy you flowers, get your own. And remember, chocolate is the goddess’s gift to mankind.
Much love and courage to all,
P.S. StarGuide Spring forecasts are now ready! I’ve still got a backlog of a few days, but I’ve caught up enough to reactivate the PayPal button on the report order page. Many thanks to everyone who has been waiting so patiently.
I didn’t see that Sun square Pluto coming, thanks for the heads-up. I like to check out these events on Planet Watcher:
Wow, that’s almost a Grand Sextile, two opposing Grand Trines in a “Star of David” configuration. But the trines are not in exact opposition. They’re only a few degrees out of orb, but one of the Trines is in the next set of signs, so they’re not a paired Earth-Water trines, they’re Earth-Air trines. Now that’s weird, Earth/Air are not friendly to each other, the Earth/Water trines would have been friendly and stable.
Re: You vs. Cheney, I guess it goes to show that there’s always free will, Pat. He may be an Aquarius Sun, Pisces Moon like you, but Cheney didn’t have to walk the dark path that he has throughout his life. You chose to become a healer and help others through your insights and practice of astrology. Cheney chose to grab and abuse power seemingly without a care for the harm his doing so brought upon others.
Similarly, I can think of a certain governor who is a Taurus Sun, Cap Moon like me whose idea of economic prosperity means allowing oil and gas companies to ruin our land and poison our water through fracking. For me on the other hand, preserving the health of the land, water and the environment in general for current and future generations is far more important than any promise of economic gain. They couldn’t pay or bribe me any amount of money to commit the type of crime against nature and humanity that fracking represents.
Back to Cheney, I’m reminded of another thought, that perhaps he is only reflecting back what is in the hearts of many people in the US. If people en masse didn’t on some level place value in the crass behavior, self-righteousness and arrogance that Cheney has exhibited as a political leader, he would have never succeeded near to the extent that he has in politics. I’m not saying everyone, but as a country, America identifies with Cheney perhaps far more than it cares to openly admit.
If everything is symbolic, I wonder if as you suggest, that Cheney’s new heart might lead to (or even reflect) an outward change in his personality? He is often likened to Darth Vader in Star Wars, but even the dreaded trans-galactic tyrant had a change of heart and redeemed his soul in the very end. I still doubt if he’ll turn himself in at The Hague though.
John, one of the (many) interesting things in the documentary about McNamara is that he admitted to being a war criminal! But he also said — and this is what the title suggests — that when people are under extreme pressure, they don’t behave rationally. I’d double that for someone on a veritable soup of chemicals to keep him “alive.” In any case, I think you’d really like the film. It’s much harder to judge when you hear what someoneo was thinking at the time. You can disagree with that thinking, but “pure evil” is relatively rare outside of Hollywood.
Unfortunately, ignorance is not.
Thank you for another extraordinary and insightful post. I’ll be watching Dick Cheney with a great deal more interest than I ever would have before. :)
So, it’s Thursday, and the Sun-Pluto square is hovering over my Saturn – so I checked my transits and found Mars sitting right on top of Pluto. This is going to be fun… :D
Hang in there, Gilly. And let us know how it goes. Anyone born in the mid-60s is having an especially tough challenge now, with this Mars retrograde.
As for Cheney, it’s amazing to see that this life-changing event for him occurs with the planets so dramatically aligned in his chart. Whatever we may think of certain people, I always sit up and take notice when charts like this show up. It’s a stark reminder that others may live their purpose in a way we can’t understand. Or, to put it another way, only God knows what’s in Dick Cheney’s heart.