When tragedies like last week’s shooting take place, the first instinct of an astrologer is to cast a chart and try to identify the correlating aspects.
I did, but not immediately. My first reaction was to get depressed, or maybe it was a sad sense of resignation. We’ve known all along that it wasn’t a question of whether another shooting spree would take place, but when. That this one took place in a church added to the shock and disbelief. We think of churches as a sanctuary. Then, I don’t suppose it’s any more “sacred” than a school, a sorority house, or a movie theater, and certainly not more than one’s home. We tend not to include the latter in our definition of mass shooting, so they don’t make sensational headlines, even though whole families have been wiped out.
Various experts and authorities are at a loss to explain the threefold increase in mass shootings in the United States in the past three years. They don’t see an increase in mental health problems, either because they aren’t looking or don’t want to reveal the extent to which people are suffering under the collapsing social structure. Maintaining that structure requires convincing people that their mental health problems are a sign of personal weakness. The few who snap and go on murderous rampages need to be explained away as isolated instances of troubled individuals with a history of racist, sexist, and sometimes criminal behavior. I suspect that for every one who has snapped, there are four or five more who were close enough to the edge that it could have been any one of them.
In the early 1990s, a friend of a friend was learning to do energy healing and asked if he could teach a class in my home. Of course, I was welcome to join them, although I didn’t quite fit in. At that time, I was still a freelance journalist, not yet into astrology (although I was studying Celtic mythology and had just started working with the Tarot). He did a lot of guided visualization. In one exercise, he named random types of people, plants, and animals and told us to imagine that we were that being. He went slowly at the beginning and then increased the speed, the idea being that we weren’t supposed to have time to think about it or intellectualize but to just feel it. We went from airplane pilot to cat to butterfly, maybe a cow grazing in the field, and something vile like a cockroach. I forget what else. Everyone was doing fine until he said, “Now imagine that you’re a convicted murderer in solitary confinement.” There was a collective gasp and shifting body positions as everyone popped out of the trance. Except for me. I was sitting in a jail cell, staring at the walls and preparing to die. It took maybe a minute to return to the present. He explained that the purpose of the exercise was to show us that we are all connected, to everyone and everything; how it is easy to feel that connection to those we think of as positive or at least neutral, but how we separate ourselves from what we hate and fear.
Yes, we are all connected, and we are feeling it especially strongly with Neptune stationed. When we are tapped into the collective unconscious, we are tapped into all of it. It’s not like ordering a pizza, with an option to hold the anchovies. I wrote recently about the monsters swimming in the collective unconscious. If we are all connected, then they belong to all of us. One of them has just surfaced.
Over the past couple of weeks, several people have told me they suddenly have an urge to delve into their past, or that memories from their past or information about their ancestors is surfacing. One dreamed about her father, who had committed suicide when she was small. For me, it was the discovery of information about my grandmother. I never knew who her parents were, and when I researched it, I couldn’t get past a missing link. A couple of weeks ago, I found census records indicating that she was raised by her grandparents. That led to the discovery of the marriage and death certificates of her mother, who married when she was 16 and died at 18, a week after giving birth to her. The day my great-grandmother died was the day before my birthday. That was on my father’s side.
On my mother’s side, I stumbled on a link that allowed me to to trace my ancestors back to France in the 17th century. Evidently, they left not because of religious persecution, but because they disapproved of the growing tolerance of Protestants. I am not proud of that, but I’m not surprised, either. My mother had an inexplicable aversion to Protestants. As far as I know, she never had a bad personal experience with one. So it had to have been passed down through the generations. That much, at least, has ended with my generation. But goddess only knows what we’re still hanging on to.
Looking at this week, on Monday, the trine from Jupiter to Uranus is exact. That’s the “eureka” moment, the big discovery, a door opening, a shackle being thrown off. On Tuesday, Mercury squares Neptune, the third and final pass in a three-part series that began on May 9. Dreams are vivid and out of left field, but some of them may contain important information. Don’t dismiss a message simply because it seems too far out. Dream language is like that. It needs a translation.
Also on Tuesday, Mars forms an inconjunct to Saturn, who’s now back in Scorpio and in mutual reception with Pluto. I’m more wary of this configuration than of last week’s Mars-Sun conjunction. It’s tense, restless, and outspoken. One possible manifestation is a protest or protests that turn into major clashes with police. Not that we haven’t been seeing this all along, but it could get worse. For the next few months, the police powers of state are going to have the upper hand.
On Wednesday, Chiron turns retrograde. As an outer body, Chiron remains at the same degree for several weeks when he shifts direction. That means both Chiron and Neptune are “stopped” in Pisces. Neptune is the medium through which we feel our interconnectedness. In Pisces, it’s total immersion, with no boundaries, whether between ourselves and others or between ourselves in this lifetime or in other incarnations. Chiron in Pisces wants to heal that connection. That may mean digging into ancient wounds, perhaps from many lifetimes removed, in order to release a block or weight that’s been holding us down. It might not even be yours, and yet you’ve been carrying it, whether or not you chose to do so.
A couple of hours after Chiron’s retrograde on Wednesday, Mars enters Cancer. Although the pace may slow down some, Mars is not at his finest in Cancer. I’ve read, but have not independently verified, that wars are more likely to start with Mars in Cancer and Libra, the signs of his fall and detriment. If we’re talking about mental health, this is a paranoid Mars whose power is being repressed in some way. If and when he finally loses his temper, it can be like the top blowing off a pressure cooker. We sure don’t need any more of that. But we’ve got it, for the next seven weeks. In mid-July, at the New Moon in Cancer, Mars opposes Pluto at the same degree of a Moon-Pluto opposition in the chart for last week’s shooting in Charleston. Usually, when we look for timing mechanisms in an astrological chart, we look for past aspects “carried forward” by a faster moving planet such as Mercury or the Moon (technically not a planet but treated as one). But I’m wondering whether, in this case, it was a future event “carried” backwards. Scientists are discovering that in the strange world of quantum physics, future events can affect the present.
On Sunday, June 21, the Sun entered Cancer, called the Cancer ingress in astrology. Ingress charts are used in mundane astrology to predict trends for countries. As I mentioned last week, the Aries ingress for the United States is good through September, but it’s worth a look. The chart cast for Washington has Virgo on the Ascendant, with chart ruler Mercury in a square with Neptune. History is important, especially wounds from the past. That would include race relations, particularly with Native and African Americans. However, we might also need to delve into episodes such as the Japanese internment camps during World War II, as well as other forms of discrimination that caused divisions among people rather than unity and cooperation. The chart has a very close Moon-Saturn square, which simply may be a reflection of the nation’s grief and sadness as we head into the summer.
On the positive side, we have the Jupiter-Uranus trine, which I’ve written about above. Uranus is on the cusp of the eighth house, the area of the chart associated with international finance. Jupiter represents the nation’s wealth and banks, while Uranus can be about free-market economics. This could be a reference to the Trans-Pacific Partnership, the trade agreement that currently has a lot of opposition from labor unions, environmental groups, and other activists. Uranus is the planet of protest and rebellion, so perhaps we’ll see an increase in TPP protests. If we do, we can expect the police to respond with excessive force.
Mercury also makes a close trine with Ceres. I’ve been ignoring poor Ceres and last week gave myself a good reminder why that isn’t a good idea. Among other things, Ceres represents the environment, an overwhelming concern for the entire world and the subject of many news headlines lately. There was an article in the Guardian on Sunday about the drought in California and how its severity may be a good thing in that it is forcing Californians to be more conservative with their water, especially those among the wealthy who consider it just a matter of money to irrigate their manicured lawns or fill their swimming pools. The second article is about the use of coal in China and its devastating effect on air quality.
I’m testing out a theory that Ceres also is about grassroots political and social movements. It makes sense, from the standpoint of the mythology. The big boys, Jupiter and Pluto (i.e., “plutocrats,” oligarchs), colluded to separate her from her beloved daughter, and when she appealed to them for help, they lied to her and said they didn’t know what she was talking about. She became so depressed that all the plant life on Earth wilted and died. She didn’t realize how much power she had. Jupiter finally was forced to tell her the truth and negotiate with her.
The Cancer ingress chart is more relevant for countries that had a cardinal sign (Aries, Cancer, Libra, Capricorn) on the Ascendant at the Aries ingress on March 21. In both the Aries and Cancer ingress charts for Teheran, Pluto is on the Ascendant. Among other things, Pluto represents nuclear weapons. The Aries ingress chart reflects the negotiations that were taking place, even though there was a lot of disagreement. The Cancer ingress chart suggests that whatever common ground might have been emerging is gone, but the financial deals that have been arranged are moving along quite nicely, to the benefit of the country itself and the bottom line of the investment banks.
China had Aries on the Ascendant in the March chart, with Uranus in the first house and Pluto in the tenth – a good representation of the anti-China protests that were taking place in Hong Kong in March, with brutal police crackdowns. Support by rich foreigners or big money from foreign governments – perhaps both – will help the protesters advance their cause over the summer. The Moon is in the sixth house, in a square with Saturn in the eighth. One possible interpretation is a major epidemic that either takes many lives or puts a strain on the country’s healthcare system. Mining issues will be in the forefront of the news. Also, there could be major new investments in technologies to burn fossil fuels more cleanly, possibly in partnership with foreign countries.
Wishing much love and courage to all,
© Pat Paquette, RealAstrologers.com, 2015.