Cancer Ingress of the Sun – Summer Solstice

The Solstices and the two Equinox are of great significance.  For Mundane astrologers, they are consulted along with the ingress of the planets, eclipses and a variety of other elements, depending on exactly what is being sought.

The rule has it that Fixed Signs signify a longer period of the effect than Cardinal, and Mutable is even shorter.  A Solstice or Equinox chart is valid for the season it heralds. Most obviously, each season is greeted by a different element. All are in Cardinal Signs. Cardinal initiates.  Aries is Cardinal Fire and heralds the Spring, Libra heralds Autumn & Capricorn, winter. Along with these markers of the seasons, there are some interesting elements that are seldom considered. For example. Capricorn is the Detriment of the Moon and Libra is the Fall of the Sun. Cancer is the domicile of the Moon, as Leo is the domicile of the Sun. The luminaries are considered to be Peregrine, so in all the aforementioned cases of the four divisions, there is always intrigue.

But first and foremost, these times are particularly powerful and should be greeted in the spirit of reverence and celebration, of conscious reception. This moment is a point in a much larger cycle. The Summer Solstice heralds not only Summer itself but the two Royal Signs – indicative of the Queen & King. The Sun and Moon rule only one sign each.   These archetypes are particularly powerful and the Summer Solstice sparks celebrations all over the world. It’s also the great pivotal point between the waxing and waning light. Just as Winter Solstice is the longest night,  Summer Solstice is the longest day. In a Celtic tradition, a flaming arrow was shot towards the Sun as it rose, adding fire to fire.

The Celts had eight major festivals and four of them coincided with the tow Equinoctial and Solstitial periods. The Summer Solstice is called Litha. It was a time of clearing, a time to banish evil spirits to make way for a celebration of the light at its zenith and assure an abundant harvest. Feasting, music, and dancing took place. Bonfires were lit in celebration.

This is where the grand picture of astrology comes into play. We are reminded that events of this magnitude affect us all in some way and recognition of this is important. This isn’t primarily a personal chart, but it is certainly a collective one. The image blow shows the stars in the constellation of Cancer the Crab: Manilus writes:

“Shining at the hinge of the year by the blazing turning-point which when recalled the Sun rounds in his course on high, the Crab occupies a joint of heaven and bends back the length of day. Of a grasping spirit and unwilling to give itself in service the Crab distributes many kinds of gain, and skill in making profits; he enables a man to carry his investment of foreign merchandise from city to city and, with an eye on steep rises in the price of corn, to risk his money upon sea-winds; to sell the world’s produce to the world, to establish commercial ties between so many unknown lands, to search out under foreign skies fresh sources of gain, and from the high price of his goods to amass sudden wealth. With heaven’s favor he also sells seasons of idleness at rates of interest to his liking, wishing the swift passage of time to add to the principal. His is a shrewd nature, and he is ready to fight for his profits.” [Astronomica, Manilius, 1st century AD, book 4, p.235.]

Most of the stars in Cancer are relatively obscure and rarely mentioned. However, the left claw holds the Arabic-named Acumen’s, which translates to ‘the Claw.’ Arabian astrologers also give this name to one of the Lunar Mansions. This should not be confused with two stars in Libra, named Zubenelgenubi, Zubeneshamali, the”Northern Claw” and Southern Claw respectively.

The initial portion of Cancer relates to the eighth Lunar Mansion (0 Cancer to 12 Cancer 51) named Aluayra or Al Nathra. In Indian tradition, this Mansion is good for cutting new clothes, for women’s jewelry and putting it on. Rain will bring benefits, not damage, but this is not a good time to travel, except for the third part of the night. Arabian astrologers added that it causes love, friendship, and society of fellow travelers.

With all these things in mind, the chart for the exact moment of the Ingress of the Sun in Cancer takes on greater meaning.

Recueil d’astronomie et de mathématiques. This is a magnificent crab, even if it looks like someone who never met one. The primary interest of this painting is the positions of the stars that make up the constellation.

There are a few salient elements I would like to point out in this chart. Such charts often either lean on the gloomy side or are manically, even blindly, optimistic.

Mars and the Moon are never a good mix. The Moon is Martial Scorpio is in her Fall and Mars is in his Fall in Cancer.  Like Saturn,  Mars is worst when the most afflicted. In the 7th House, he is an open enemy. He’s in the decanate of Mercury which makes him that much more explosive; nevertheless, something needs to trigger the outburst. This position on a chart for the Pacific coast is prime for a maritime disaster, but nothing on a grand scale, such as a major earthquake.

Mars in his Fall From: Metaliʿü’l-saadet ve yenabiʿü-l-siyadet Seyyid Mohammed i

The second focus is the 5th House. The Moon is Exalted in Taurus, with Venus in her Domicile and the Parts of Courage and Necessity. Moreover, Mercury is strong and resilient in Gemini with the Part of Venus (Eros). This is a veritable garden of Venusian creativity, involving Mercury, and the Sun. This ought to be an encouragement to creativity versus negativity, despair or simple lethargy.

Jupiter is in the Exaltation of Saturn, but he’s still Jupiter and in the 10th House. The 11th House of Greater Fortune has the Part of Spirit and Victory, but also Nemesis.

Human life on this plane is always an admixture of fortunes. The Summer Solstice is a time to celebrate the light in whatever way speaks to you.

Solar Revolution – Vernal Equinox


Drawing a chart for 0°Aries is an ancient tradition. This is the astrological New Year and the chart is representative of who is the Lord of the Year and what we can expect the year to bring.

This chart is cast for Pacific Daylight Time (+7). This means that it most specifically applies to the Yukon, North to the Arctic and South to the Baja Peninsula. It also includes Haida Gwaii

The Eastern boundary is roughly marked by the Rocky Mountains  It covers several major cities including Vancouver, Victoria, Seattle, Portland, San Francisco and Los Angeles. The Coastal Range and the Olympian Range of mountains are within this zone, as are fault lines of various threat levels.wtzmap006

It’s being calculated from Victoria, the Capital City of British Columbia, Canada. Most of what I have to say will be most pronounced for this location. The specifics of the chart are as follows 20 March 2013 @ 04:21:55 am. 48 North 25 – 123 W

First of all, I’m using Whole Sign Houses and referring to the same chart in Porphyry to measure relative strength.

The chart is for the Day and Hour of Mars, with Mars Direct and  in his Domicile.

Mars is the chart Almuten. The Sun is the Lord of the Year and in his exaltation Mars disposits the Sun and Saturn, the latter being the Lord of the Ascendant..

There is a remarkably strong Martian signature, not all of which is obvious at first glance. They even share Face, so Mars and Sun will never be too far from each other with regard to intent.123421

Some will argue that Mars is Under the Beams and therefore massively weakened at best. My view on this point is that ignoring the relatedness of Sun and Mars would be careless and ultimately misleading. I believe most seasoned astrologers would agree. When valid considerations become unquestioned dogma, they can often lose their original intent and cause unnecessary oversights.

This is a Night Chart, so Mars is in Sect and applying to the Ascendant. In this case at least, we have two hot masculine planets, both dry.

One is exaltation of the other, which in turn provides the domicile of the second. Of course they will act together.

The Part of Mars is in the Second Whole Sign House. Rhetorius tell us that “The Lot of Mars or Boldness is indicative of rashness and treachery and strength and every form of villainy” (Rhetorius p. 26). He is disposited by Saturn and doesn’t do well in the Second House. . Economic growth is curtailed. There will be water shortages and food costs will increase accordingly.

The Lot of Saturn is also called retribution. Here we find him in the Opposite topos as the Ascendant. Although less than ideal, I can’t see this amounting to much harm in and of itself because its nature is the same as the Ascendant..

Luna is in her own Domicile, separating from a Square to Mars and would transfer light to Saturn via an applying Trine to Scorpio.

There is a problem here because Saturn is Retrograde,  in the disposition of Mars and Lord of the Ascendant. Saturn and the Moon have no reception. However it’s important to note that Luna is Parallel Arcturus, a significant Fixed Star of the nature of Mars and Jupiter.porphai

What was a strong Cardinal presence in the chart, now has a Fixed Martial Saturn in the mix and in a Productive House. The Eleventh House is that of the Good Spirit. Saturn in this House is not good at all. First of all, it subverts the House of the Good Spirit and tends to make those we rely on hostile, usually when we least expect it

The Moon has also just departed from a Trine with Mercury in his Fall and departing from a Cardinal Square with the Part of Fortune. But she is also applying to an Exalted Venus in the Third House. Jupiter is Direct, but in his Detriment and in the Face of Mars. Porphyry houses place Jupiter in the Fifth, affording a bit more relative strength.

This is a bright spark in the horoscope, but Saturn ( Whole Sign) is Almuten of the Tenth House. All things considered this chart bodes well for women and particularly if they are in a position of authority. Venus exalted is in the Third House of the Goddess.

The Sixth House is Unfortunate and Jupiter is limited by all these considerations. It is Fortunate however that Venus is Exalted and Dispositing the Tenth House Part of Fortune.

Mars is Almuten of the Fourth and Eleventh House, while the Sun is Almuten of the Eighth House. Fomalhaut, the Mouth of the Fish is conjunct Mercury, being of his own nature as well as that of Venus. Jupiter is with the very powerful star, Aldebaran, the follower of the Pleiads.

Mars in Aries - From el-Tusi, Paradise of Submission

Mars in Aries – From el-Tusi, Paradise of Submission

This star is said to be of the nature of Mars. He is called the Eye of God and is also associated with blindness.  This latter combination makes for a prophetic or highly intuitive mind, even with Mercury in Pisces. The Stars really change the formula. Also, the Part of Jupiter is in  the Ninth House, lending more spiritual discernment to the overall picture.

There will be increased seismic activity, particularly during May and September, although a heightened threat is present throughout the year. I am not predicting  a major catastrophe for Vancouver or Victoria, although those on the West Coast of the Island should be vigilant. This heightened warning also applies to Haida Gwaii and the Coastal regions of the Olympia Range.

Spring will be relatively warm and damp. Weather will become progressively dry. As the year unfolds there will be excessive heat and some drought, at its worst in the South of California. When the Sun enters his own House in Leo, there will be droughts and more fires than usual, including forest and brush fires on a larger than average scale.

When the  Sun rises with Sirius we usually have the peak of extreme heat. According to writers like Rhetorius and Mashallah , the combination we have brings either war or conflicts. I see widespread social unrest but not a war that effects this time zone.

Twelve years have completed since the last Superior Conjunction of  May 2000. The Ascendant was in Leo @18°. Directing the Ascendant, we are starting a new cycle with the Ascendant progressing to Virgo..

The syzygy falls in the Third House @ 21 °24 Pisces. In the source chart it appears right on the MC. The Moon is the Hyleg.  Being reflective and turning inwards for answers will be a great skill to have this year

Element of Water

tsunami The intended readership of this article is the informed astrological neophyte, although I hope practicing astrologers will find something of value as well.

In Astrology we use the four elements: Earth, Water, Fire and Air. The fifth or Quintessence is the source of them all.

We have become accustomed to thinking of such things in the abstract; but these are live and dynamic elements, each with unique and complex characteristics.  The doctrine of As above, So below doesn’t just apply some of the time. It applies always. Consciousness and vital expression is everywhere.

My goal is to use the study of each element from many perspectives to be ultimately used in the interpretation of horoscopes: to experience the elements as not only living, but divine, both in the microcosm and the macrocosm. One of the most regrettable blind allies taken by students of Traditional Astrology is to divorce the Art not only from psychological concerns but spiritual ones as well. This can lead to a very dry materialism that puts little or no value on the spiritual.

Considering the Neo Platonic, Pythagorean and Hermetic philosophies that inform the art, this is a sad state of affairs. I read not so long ago that “Modern astrology has no brains and Traditional Astrology has no soul.”  Technicalities can become an end in themselves.

The most concise definition of astrology is ‘the practical application of astronomy to human use.’ Titus Burckhardt writes: “our response to it must necessarily hinge on our understanding of what it means to be human ” (Ibn Arabi p.5). If our essential interconnectedness with all that is and all that will ever be is ignored, we become greatly diminished as human beings; but what might have been a sad fact at another time in history is inexorably linked to our own survival and the survival of thousands of other species in our own lifetime. The deliberate or unconscious  pollution of the oceans, for example, is immediately connected with spiritual sickness. It is the act of someone who has no idea of who they really are.


When we consider this in  light of  a particular chart,  we will of course want to know how a given element expresses itself in the  horoscope. This perhaps sounds all too obvious, but you will never meet anyone with the same chart as you, no matter how long you live.  ‘

Likewise, no two drops of water are identical. So while it is tempting to think of an  element as  one thing, we must also take into account that the same element exists in many different states. Most obviously we have water, ice and clouds in the Water Triplicity. but that’s just the beginning.

Cornelius Agrippa discusses this at great length in Bk I of  Occult Philosophy, using the language of his own times. However, Jakob Boehme and William Blake were just as expressive of this reality – “To see a world in a grain of sand, And a heaven in a wild flower, Hold infinity in the palm of your hand, And eternity in an hour” is on the mark. (Augeries of Innocence)”

In Hermetic Philosophy elements are not just things, categories or qualities. Everything is imbued with spirit and everything we can know see has consciousness: “Everything That Lives is Holy” (Blake MHH).

Water is incredibly dangerous. Traditionally this is one reason that Saturn was given governance over seafarers. This also carries the meaning of  the extremities or ‘furthest reaches’ as Saturn is the furthermost visible planet. The ocean was regarded as both chaos and the source of life in cultural mythologies.



Water is essential to life. Either too much or too little can mean the difference between life and death. She gives and takes life.

The human body is approximately 2/3 water. About 83 percent of our blood is water, which helps digest our food, transport waste, and control body temperature. Each day humans must replace 2.4 litres of water, some through drinking and the rest taken by the body from the foods eaten.

Great civilizations grew up around rivers, such as the Euphrates, the Nile, the Indus, the Mekong, the Yangtze, the Danube and the Ganges. The Egyptians refer to the Milky Way as the “true Nile.” The Indians say the Milky Way is the Heavenly Ganges.

Rivers are often a place of worship and most specifically ritual purification. The Ganges is a goddess to Hindus.  The bather in the Ganges is letting the waters of the goddess dissolve all physical and spiritual impurities. She is alive and responsive.

Because water retains memory, the person drinking water at the mouth of the Rhine is taking in more information than one drinking at the source of the Rhine (see video 1)

This is science in accordance with the spirit of  Hermetic doctrine

Indian mythology equates the river Ganges with the Milky Way. According to Vedic lore  Ganga (Ganges) resided in the sky (Milky Way) and was called Akash Ganga' or Sky-River.

Indian mythology equates the river Ganges with the Milky Way. According to Vedic lore Ganga (Ganges) resided in the sky (Milky Way) and was called Akash Ganga’ or Sky-River.

All Signs of the Water Triplicity are Feminine and Receptive. In other words, they are absorbent.

This is more true of Pisces than Cancer and Scorpio because the fishes have no armor. But the principle applies to all three nevertheless.

Water is highly receptive and demonstrably responsive to sound waves or in fact being in contact with anything, It is not malleable as is Earth; but it will conform to any container.

It is not my intent here to go into any detail regarding the signs. That is for another post. But we can take a quick look at a couple of examples to see the principle at play.

Yangtze River

Yangtze River

With the Moon in Cancer she is in her own domicile. The Moon is the most reflective of all luminaries and planets.

The Moon governs memory. Both luminary and sign are feminine and receptive.

To put it simply, the Moon functions best in her own home.

Venus is exalted in Pisces. Again we have feminine with feminine.

The selfless nature of Pisces produces what we can call an optimum Venus because she is spiritualized.  But she is even better off in Libra or Taurus predominantly through art and sensuality respectively, balanced and stable. Libra and Taurus are her domiciles.

Elements perform best when placed with harmonious planets and luminaries: particularly in their domicile or exaltation. In the case of water signs, they are particularly impressionable and absorbent.

Massive wave near Australia's Bondi beach

Massive wave near Australia’s Bondi beach

The element of water is highly intuitive and, unless otherwise afflicted, highly empathic.

Those with strong water signatures in the horoscope need to drink more water than most and do well near large bodies of water. Salt water can absorb *negative energy* even is used in a small receptacle at home.

Pisces, the most Feminine sign of all, needs to cleanse themselves from the excess of negative energy absorbed. Pisces is like a sponge and requires more time alone to recharge than any other sign.


Belugas playing in the Arctic

Most I think are aware of the relationship of water to positive or negative ions. A negative Ion is an atom or molecule that has absorbed one or more extra negatively charged electrons. Negative ions are highly beneficial. They are generated by evaporating water, ocean surf, or waterfalls.

It should be an easy task to connect the spiritual and the material by understanding the essential nature of any element. But all the true Arts take many years to master. The doctrine of As above, So below will become increasingly profound in the process

Alchemical Symbol for the Element of Water

Alchemical Symbol for the Element of Water