May 18, 2017

May 18, 2017: Mount St. Helens Rumbles and Eclipses Are Due

A refresher on the May 18, 1980 Eruption of Mount St. Helens (Washington State) by Sharyn Smith provides a timely reminder of the volcano's destruction that Sunday morning when a 5.1 magnitude earthquake opened a vent on the mountain's north face. Although not felt on the surface, deep seismic activity began to increase in March 1980 and now, from March into May 2017, a similar phenomena is occurring but this does not predict that a definite eruption is on the way, circa 2017. After all, volcanic eruptions have always been notoriously difficult to predict, which in scientific terms, I suppose means 'impossible'.

But what are easy to predict are Lunar and Solar Eclipses and their well documented effects upon natural forces that result in such weather-related events as storms, hurricanes, floods, tornadoes, and droughts, plus, earthquakes and volcanoes, so if eclipses are any measure, perhaps the month of August 2017 is one to keep our eyes on. However, not being a meteorologist I won't 'predict' any such correlated event/s but you may wish to consider the two eclipses that are due in August 2017. Links to their charts are below: the August 7, 2017 Lunar Eclipse horoscope is set for Washington DC and the charts of the August 21st Solar Eclipse that 'splits' our nation, aka, The Great American Eclipse are set for two locations where its shadow first touches the US--the West Coast (Oregon--too close to Mount St. Helens for comfort?) and a second horoscope for where its shadow leaves the mainland (South Carolina) and heads out to sea.

Astrology and a Significant Star

Significant is the degree of the August Solar Eclipse which manifests upon one of the critical 29th degrees, in August in the solar-ruled sign of Leo (Tropical Zodiac). What's more, significant events are more likely when an eclipse conjoins a prominent fixed star and this one hits royal Regulus now precessed from 29Leo to 00Virgo, an earth sign. The primary key phrase for Regulus, the king or kingmaker, is: success if revenge is avoided. If vengeance is not avoided all that has been gained shall be lost. Another way to say this is that a a fall from grace will occur and unfortunately for our nation, the 29Leo eclipse directly hits the natal Ascendant of Donald Trump who was born on June 16, 1946 with Regulus rising @29Leo (along with Mars @26Leo). This eclipse may not bode well for Mr. Trump's present political and legal troubles, as you may agree, though I hope this is not so because as he goes, so goes America.

For to paraphrase the great traditional astrologer William Lilly, Eclipses always affect History but work only through individual charts. This would seem to be the case in August for America which has been no paragon of restraint when it comes to taking vengeance upon our foes and at the moment, we are led by a belligerent Mars Rising fellow, a Jupiterian mogul who knows few if any bounds, and who behaves unpredictably via his 10th house Uranus in Gemini.

But enough of 'the politics', that "organized system of hatreds"! (And yes, I know I promised No Politics on this blog but a very significant and rare eclipse is due!)

For the Total Solar Eclipse in August is certain to be an eerie sight not to be missed especially for viewers in the Path of Totality (others will see a partial eclipse) yet we must have our eclipse glasses on hand for safety's sake and do be sure to check out the very informative for pertinent details including your closest location and where to order your specs!

The Path of Totality touches: Oregon, Idaho, Montana, Wyoming, Nebraska, Kansas, Missouri, Iowa, Illinois, Kentucky, Tennessee, Georgia, North Carolina, and South Carolina. Please check the Eclipse2017 website for specific towns and cities since some are directly in the Path of Totality and some are on the outskirts of it.

Related Horoscopes:

August 7, 2017: Lunar Eclipse @15AQ and Oregon and South Carolina Horoscopes of The Great American Eclipse of August 21, 2017 (but beware: posts contain rather generous helpings of politics dribbled all over them). Note that eclipse influences may begin as early as two weeks prior to the eclipse date and are considered to be 'cosmic blinks' and 'wild cards of the Universe' which may affect events on Earth with Uranian unpredictability and disruption especially when they are Total.

May 2, 2017

Full Moon in Scorpio May 10th: Transmute Fear into Love - Barbara Goldsmith

Here is expert astrologer Barbara Goldsmith with her insightful overview of the May 10, 2017 Full Moon @20Scorpio which perfects in the US at 5:42 pm edt:


The Sabian Symbol for '20 Scorpio' is quite intriguing: "A Woman Draws Away Two Dark Curtains Closing the Entrance to a Sacred Pathway...Keynote: The revelation to the human consciousness of what lies beyond dualistic knowledge." This symbol relates to "--the hierophant unveiling the realities which the either-or, pro-and-con mind of man alone cannot perceive. The path to the mystic's 'unitive life' are opened up once the darkness of fear, egocentricity and dualistic morality is removed.{} It reveals what a positive reliance upon faith and intuition can bring about. Courage is needed to go through the veiling darkness--the courage to venture beyond the familiar and the traditionally known, to PLUNGE AHEAD INTO THE UNKNOWN."

An Astrological Mandala, Dane Rudhyar.

Unveiling realities? Drawing away dark curtains? This symbol seems most appropriate for a Full Moon since they tend to increase our awareness, reveal or uncover secrets, and shine a spotlight on hidden things. Actually, there are times when New and Full Moons have the capacity to bring Uranian surprises and changes in similar fashion to solar and lunar eclipses! (D. Ovason)

Then on a deeper cosmic level that mystery loving Scorpio appreciates, the May 10, 2017 Full Moon echoes by degree (20 Scorpio) the Solar Eclipse of November 12, 1985 in the 5 New South Saros Series with its positive themes of: good news, peak experiences, joyful events (ex: falling in love), and long lasting benefits (Predictive Astrology, Bernadette Brady).

Apr 19, 2017

Apr 22, 2017: Lyrids, Vega, Crescent Moon

Hercules and the Stymphalian Birds by Gustave Moreau (Frances Lehman Loeb Art Center) [Public domain], via Wikimedia Commons

After midnight and in the predawn hours of April 22 and 23, 2017 we shall have an opportunity (with clear enough skies) to view the annual Lyrid meteor shower thanks to a waning crescent Moon.

Good advice is available concerning How and When to View the Lyrids in 2017, plus, don't miss astronomer Brian Ventrudo's website Cosmic Pursuits where you'll find the Lyrids on his list of cosmic events for the month of April 2017 along with helpful night sky maps of stars and constellations.

Looking Up: April 22 and 23, 2017

The Lyrids are known as the oldest recorded meteor shower and when visible on a clear night in darkened conditions, they make for a spectacular experience of cosmic proportions. Constellation Lyra the Harp and its brightest star Vega have been called multiple names in various cultures through the centuries including: the Lyre of Orpheus by the Greeks, Vega the Harp Star by Pliny, and the Hero's Harp by Celts and Anglo-Saxons. Early Christians called it King David's Harp while in Arabia it was the Great Swooping Eagle - not to be confused with constellation Aquila the Great Flying Eagle. In India, Lyra was linked to the vulture and in some locations was known as the Swooping Vulture holding a lyre in its beak. So as you see, music is Vega's basic theme.

Plus, as a harp-carrying vulture, Lyra was the third of the Stymphalian Birds which links the star to the Labors of Hercules. With minor edits, here's something I posted a few years ago on Stars Over Washington before I created Jude Cowell Astrology on which to post about such topics:

The Stymphalian Birds (Lyra, Aquila, Cygnus the Swan) were known to be man-eaters, and Hercules was given the Labor of driving away an enormous flock of them from a lake deep in the woods near the town of Stymphalos. The goddess Athena appeared and gave Hercules a pair of bronze krotala, or castenets, to create a huge ruckus so that Hercules could shoot them with his arrows (or some say, a slingshot) as they flew away. These krotala were created by the immortal craftsman, Hephaestus...

So, as previously noted, our chance in 2017 for viewing the Lyrids, or 'falling stars' as they are popularly called (because that's what meteor showers can look like!), will be most likely in the predawn hours of Earth Day April 22 and perhaps extending to April 23 as well, storms or cloudiness notwithstanding. Radiating from the South near lovely Vega which will be helpfully bright in mid-Capricorn (Tropical Zodiac), the Lyrids will be favorably revealed by a crescent Moon in Pisces and are expected to display approximately 10 to 20 'stars' per hour from Comet C/1861 Thatcher's debris.

This comet last crossed Earth's orbit on April 20, 1861 and some could say it was a harbinger or at least a timer for the Civil War which began on April 12, 1861. I'm not saying it but some could if they chose...

Now for use in horoscope reading, here are a few astrological keywords concerning the pale sapphire star Vega (alpha Lyrae) which culminates at 16 Capricorn (aka, 'Wega'):

Nature: Venus-Mercury-Neptune-Jupiter-Saturn; Keywords and concepts: wealth via government dealings; good fortune in politics; art and/or music talent; fleeting fame; double-dealing; mother problems; beneficence; idealism; refinement; hopeful; changeable; adaptable. Negative potentials include: a grave manner; outward pretentiousness; usually lasciviousness. Through its link to Orpheus, Vega may also suggest potentials for: magic; divine spells; charisma; and/or an aura of other-worldliness when connected to a planet or planets in a natal or event chart.


Star lore and keywords primarily from Horary Astrology Plain and Simple, A. Louis; Encyclopedia of Astrology, N. deVore; and The Book of Fixed Stars, B. Brady--all of which books are highly recommended by yours truly.

Apr 14, 2017

Astrology and the Stars of Vincent Van Gogh

Astro-Notes on the Stars of Vincent Van Gogh

“La tristesse durera toujours.” – Vincent van Gogh

A few years back, CBS’ 60 Minutes aired a feature on certain questions surrounding the death of Vincent van Gogh asking, did the painter commit suicide as is typically promoted? Did teen-aged boys with a “malfunctioning gun” wound him the afternoon of July 27, 1890—-boys he may have gone drinking with?

Was someone else in the wheat fields that day he left the Inn after breakfast ostensibly to paint?

No matter how it happened, van Gogh passed away from his wound at about 1:00 am LMT according to contemporary accounts (with 1:30 am listed on his death certificate) on July 29, 1890 in his room at Auvers sur Oise, France with brother Theo among those at his bedside. The horoscope I’m posting here is set for that date and place at 1:19 am LMT because a YOD pattern formed at that time, a planetary pattern which has a health implication along with its ‘crossroads’ and ‘turning point’ connotations. The transiting Moon @25Sag53 (or, ‘death Moon’, tragically) had just set at 1:19 am along with the Lunar South Node, a Saturnian point of separation. As you know, the Moon is a significator for the physical body, among other things, and as such relates to health matters on both the physical and psychological levels.

Ebertin gives the Moon-MC duo as “collapse” and as you see in the horoscope, their sextile forms the base of the YOD pointing toward Chiron, the wound and the wounded, in Cancer, ruled by the Moon. Transiting Chiron has crossed Vincent’s natal Ascendant recently and remains within orb; Cancer rules the breast and chest area where the bullet pierced his body and a turning point (YOD) has occurred.

Van Gogh was born on March 30, 1853 with natal Moon @20Sag55 conjoining South Node (SN @22Sag28 Stationary) and Jupiter (24:16) and his last Lunar Return took place on July 28 while he was in bed and fading away toward death. A Moon-Jupiter conjunction tends to provide a good reputation yet Moon-SN has ‘bad timing, emotional isolation, and lack of cooperation from others’ implications of a karmic nature; Jupiter-SN denotes more ‘bad timing’ issues which blocked or restricted his endeavors along with ‘conflicts of interests’; Van Gogh’s ethical and religious aims may have clashed with prevailing social trends.

This period of time included a Nodal Return for him, a 19-year cycle when new associations may begin and fate is encountered; his death NN arises in the 1:19 am horoscope, as you see below. “PE” rising denotes the influencing Solar Eclipse which occurred on June 17, 1890 in the 19 North Saros Series with themes of: realism; coming down to earth; seeing things as they are rather than as they had seemed; tackling the truth (paraphrasing Brady’s Predictive Astrology.)

Sadly, ‘coming down to earth’ may refer to multiple things in van Gogh’s case such as sinking to the ground after a gunshot–self-inflicted, misdirected, or accidental–and to his burial on July 30, 1890. His long term depressive condition may also be implicated along with his recent stay in the gloomy environment of an asylum (St. Pol—like Pollux!), then on to Auvers where he is said to have completed 70 canvases in 70 days! Health wise, epilepsy plagued him as indicated in the natal chart by a particular midpoint picture: Uranus-Neptune = Sun (vitality): epilepsy and possibly migraines as well. (Ebertin.) Other natal chart factors also indicate neurological problems, disturbing dreams, plus, an inferiority complex, a fluctuating lack of incentive to work, a quarreling nature, and a weak will to live.

The Death of Vincent Van Gogh

July 29, 1890 1:19 am LMT Auvers sur Oise, France; Hour of an unaspected Venus (in 4th house and in Virgo, sign of the bowels and The Virgin); asteroid Aesculapia, a health/healer archetype, rises with the North Node (encounters; destiny) and the prior Solar Eclipse (PE), as noted above, making its themes of immediate importance; Moon is angular.

Warrior Mars, fiery planet of guns, bullets, sharp instruments and those who wield them, is posited @1Sag49 in the 6th house of Health, Work, Daily Rounds, and Service including the military. Curiously, the degree of Mars at ‘1 Sag’ in the Sabian Symbols = “A Grand Army of the Republic Campfire” which I assume has nothing to do with the identity of the shooter–van Gogh himself or another–but one wonders.

‘Misdirected energy’ is found in the horoscope (ex: T-Square with Mars-Neptune pointing toward Saturn) with the Mars-Neptune opposition showing potential for deceptive actions, confused motivations, possibly fraud, and weakened efforts. Some sources mention the teen aged boys as noted above having a ‘misfiring gun’. Would a man wishing to commit suicide shoot himself between stomach and heart as van Gogh’s wound is described by those present at his deathbed? A painter familiar with human anatomy?

Well, if he did shoot himself, there is a Kite configuration (if the Nodal axis is allowed) indicating success with the Moon as nose and NN/ASC as the tail. Separation (SN) from the physical body (Moon) was achieved yet a less painful method than a lingering death would surely have been preferred. Besides, did he take a gun with him that morning as he set out for the wheat fields for a day of painting? So far, I’ve found no mention of such planning on van Gogh’s part.

As for the boys who may have been involved, the wounded van Gogh is reported to have stated, “Do not accuse anyone…it is I who wanted to kill myself” though in his letters he had referred to the act of suicide as “sinful” and “immoral” (as it is) and was known to be concerned with his spiritual condition and ultimate destination. If the shooting was accidental he may have wanted to spare someone the blame, make his death matters easier for his family, and gain positive karmic progress simultaneously.

And yes, van Gogh’s occult interests are also known and he left behind a number of books on metaphysical topics.

Violence, Murder, Suicide

Other chart indicators point toward suicide and/or murder but with no definite conclusion: his natal Mars @26Pis08 (conjunct natal MC, the Aspiration-Career Point–in creative Pisces) conjoins Fixed Star, Scheat which can bring extreme misfortune, murder, or suicide (Robson) when linked to malevolent planets as here–conjunct quarreling Mars.

Plus, star Pollux rising in his natal chart denotes potentials for brutality, violence, cruelty, the occult, being deceived by others, and fate playing cruel tricks upon him. The archetype associated with shadowy Pollux is sometimes “the wicked boy” though of course there is the added benefit of brilliant Castor-Pollux creativity where the polarities of good vs evil and light vs dark are blended and overlapped into pleasing patterns (his painting) with undercurrents of angst and pain. (Brady; Louis; Ebertin-Hoffmann.)

Four stars are linked to van Gogh’s natal planets by paran:

1. Deneb Adige in Cynus, The Swan relates to the strength and hostility of the swan and to mysticism, transcendentalism, and the World Egg. The star was at Nadir (midnight) when his Mercury set so it expresses at the end of his life and after death. His style of rapid brushstrokes and unusual color techniques show how he thought and communicated (Mercury) and received recognition after death;

2. Ras Alhague, a star of healing, wounding, teaching, and creating balance, is linked to his Sun which culminated (the prime of his life and career) as Ras Alhague set; Rigor says it provides “tremendous visualization ability” which is excellent for an artist though negative indicators can also be involved with this star.

3. Bellatrix in the left shoulder of Orion is partner to Betelgeuse (right shoulder), a star that promises success. Bellatrix provides success as well but with a shadow and a price involved: achievement requires dealing with the dark components of the psyche; personal weaknesses are exposed making the pathway to success difficult. Bellatrix is linked to van Gogh’s natal Mars at Nadir as the star set. Add this Martian indicator to his Mars-Scheat potential noted above and we see a dark and tragic life’s journey ending with (probable) suicide;

4. Acumen, a nebula star with Aculeus, both linked to the concept of blindness whether physical, mental, and/or spiritual. Was he color blind? Acumen implies the negative shadow side of the starry duo and brings attacks which weaken and damage. This star adds more of the light vs dark theme to van Gogh’s life and indicates problems with gossip that destroys the reputation. However, lashing out in anger–like a stinging scorpion–is inadvisable since it may result in self-destruction.

Dealing with issues such as personal weaknesses and other problems “in the clear light of day” (ex: painting wheat fields!) is imperative for lessening the negative potentials of Acumen which links to his Moon-SN-Jupiter conjunction of bad timing, separations, and grief. But unfortunately, van Gogh’s natal Mercury-Pluto conjunction of deep thinking includes a tendency toward lashing out with cruel words that leave lasting damage to its recipients and to his relationships with them.

Impaired Vitality and a Life of Melancholy

Vincent's brother Theo van Gogh, a Paris art dealer who supported Vincent financially and emotionally, had been experiencing career disagreements with his employer and was considering starting his own company. By July 1890 this may have contributed to Vincent’s increased anxiety during his final days during which Theo attested to Vincent’s weak will to live: “He himself wanted to die.” Does such a desire prove that the shot that day was self-inflicted? Or did Vincent simply realize that the unremovable bullet was an opportunity to escape his earthly suffering?

His “La tristesse durera toujours” translates as, “The sadness will last forever,” and with this observation, when considering his difficult life fighting inner demons with lessening strength and his remarkable genius cut short, many art lovers would agree that Vincent van Gogh was correct.

And as friend and death bed attendant, Dr. Gachet, eulogized at van Gogh’s funeral, “He was an honest man…and a great artist. He had only two goals, humanity and art.”

Vincent van Gogh R.I.P.


Apr 10, 2017

The Astrology of Carl Jung - David Cochrane

As most astrologers and astrology students are aware, psychologist Carl Jung used Astrology in his practice with the more difficult to diagnose patients. But for some reason, I had previously missed the following analysis published in March 2015 by master astrologer David Cochrane and thought you might appreciate it in case you missed it, too:


As you know, this particular Swiss specialist on the personal-collective unconscious was plagued by serious father issues and if you're curious, here's a different view of Carl Gustav Jung's natal chart (rectified from an approximate time by Lois Rodden). For information about our earthly fathers we look first to planet Saturn in natal chart. As Jung's only retrograde planet, authoritative Saturn is in 1st house @24AQ11 of Self, trines Jupiter in Airy Libra, and is opposed by unpredictable, quirky Uranus in proud, bossy Leo across the Leo-Aquarius Self-Will axis. I imagine some serious head-butting and father-son competition occurred via this opposition, don't you? Plus, there's all the stubborn Fixed placements in Jung's chart with the exception of a Mutable Sagittarian Midheaven!

Of course, Sagittarius is ruled by fortunate Jupiter and his Jupiter trines Saturn, an aspect that astrologer Alan Oken labels, The Banker, and an aspect that undoubtedly aided him in his career and public reputation. After all, the professional reputation and pioneering work of Carl Jung has spread far and wide since his birth in 1875 and he continues to be the most famous psychologist in the world, don't you think?

Mar 20, 2017

Astro-Notes: The Great Moon Hoax of 1835

Lunar Animals, 1835, published by The NY Sun {public domain}

On August 25, 1835, the first in a series of six articles appeared in the New York Sun (1833-1950), a 'penny press' newspaper with a 'narrative style' of writing, and a broad reach due to its low price. The paper's circulation increased as readers failed to catch the satire in the story which concerned an alleged discovery of life on the Moon.

Yes, The Great Moon Hoax of 1835 even involved the famous British astronomer John Herschel, son of William, and his scientific discoveries which readers were told, included finding life on the Moon.

Less than a month later on September 16, 1835, The NY Sun admitted that the articles were a hoax and nowadays some may say that the newspaper printing what was really a hoax was an early presaging of Mr. Trump's 'fake news' but in 1835, the paper's circulation did not suffer as viewership (and politically polled approval ratings) can so easily do today. For fun, let's have a peek at the Moon's position for both dates along with the Sun's position for a few clues about the famous Moon Hoax of 1835, its beginning and ending:

August 25, 1835 12:00 pm LMT NYC: Sun Virgo-Moon Virgo for the 24-hour period. A practical double Earth blend, Sun Virgo-Moon Virgo has an appropriate 'Image for Integration': "A well-oiled printing machine hums away, producing perfectly bound copies of The Layman's Guide to Essential Nutrients."

September 16, 1835 12:00 pm LMT NYC: Sun Virgo-Moon Cancer: an Earth-Water blend, practical as potter's clay, and having this 'Image': "A nutritionist serves his family organically grown chicken soup."

Curious that the word pictures for both Sun-Moon blends relate to nurturing, comfort, and food... as does the astrological Moon!


Note that the Moon remained in her signs during the 24 hours of both dates; "Images" from Sun Sign-Moon Sign by Charles and Suzi Harvey.

Mar 15, 2017

Astro-Notes: What Do Jean Harlow and Auguste Renoir Have in Common?

La Parisienne by Auguste Renoir This file has been identified as being free of known restrictions under copyright law, including all related and neighboring rights.

When we check out the natal horoscopes of French painter Pierre Auguste Renoir and Hollywood actress Jean Harlow we find that they share more than enduring fame for both were born with Sun in creative Pisces and Moon in Mars-ruled Aries, a volatile, steamy Water-Fire personality blend.

If you share this Sun-Moon blend then (like it or not!) this description is for you!

Sun Pisces-Moon Aries identifies one who is romantic, artistic, and affectionate yet can be quarrelsome, willful, and moody. Sensitivity and an independent spirit combine to create a fun-loving personality that is humble yet self-centered, keenly intuitive yet militant as meek and mild meet the defense of a fragile ego. Quietly theatrical, this blend possesses a me-first mindset mixed with an I'll-do-anything-for-you vibe. Notable may be a sense of restlessness and personal bias that is easy-going yet can express as a know-it-all maverick forever promoting its heroic qualities.

In relationships, Sun Pisces-Moon Aries is one of the most romantic combinations and may enter unions quite impetuously though picking a fight is a typical tactic meant to create some 'space' when needed. The capacity to laugh at human nature and bounce back when knocked down is a laudable quality of this blend but meanwhile, friends may consider Sun Pisces-Moon Aries folk to be enigmatic.

A tendency to go overboard with efforts to win is inspired by the fear that one's efforts will not be recognized and worth will not be noticed but years after their deaths, it seems certain that such a worrisome issue has been settled once and for all for Jean Harlow and for Auguste Renoir!

Sun Pisces-Moon Aries has only one Image for Integration according to Charles and Suzi Harvey in their book, Sun Sign-Moon Sign, and it's quite curious even for Paris or Hollywood:

"In tattered rags, the small, obscure young servant named Arthur pulls the sword from the stone and becomes king of Camelot."

Also viewable is my post concerning the natal horoscope of Jean Harlow (natal chart shown) with a bit of her bio, plus, a studio shot of her platinum blondness and a movie clip featuring the suave, elegant Cary Grant!

Note that other chart factors made Harlow and Renoir different. This post focuses on what made their personalities similar!

Mar 9, 2017

Full Moon in Virgo: Deep Healing March 12 2017 - Barbara Goldsmith reports

Ocean winds blow as expert astrologer Barbara Goldsmith reports on the Virgo Full Moon of March 12, 2017:


Also published is a view of the Washington DC horoscopes of the March 12th Full Moon and the Aries New Moon of March 27th if you're curious.