• Master Astrologer, Poet, Author, Artist, and Teacher


About Astrological Aspects

A little explored area of astrology is reading conjunctions as a means of explaining all aspects.

The conjunction is the beginning of a cycle, and any aspect, no matter what it is, grew out of the last conjunction that occurred between those two planets.

Here is an example: I have Mars at 0 degrees 24 minutes Virgo and Neptune at 10 degrees 30 minutes Libra. So they are just about 40 degrees apart — a novile aspect. Noviles are aspects of the future, that is, the interaction of the two planets is something we are developing in this lifetime, something we are growing into, moving toward.

When I check in the ephemeris to see when Mars and Neptune were last in conjunction, what I do is go back to the last time that Mars was in Libra. When I do this I find that at that time Neptune was in about 7 Libra, and in fact it was in that degree — 7 Libra — that Mars and Neptune conjoined. The Chandra and Omega symbols for 7 Libra are, on the surface, very different from each other. the Chandra symbol is “A group of old ladies gossiping excitedly,” and the Omega symbol is “The Great Wall of China making a huge shadow.” I favor the Omega symbol, since the Chandra symbol seems trivial. But whenever a symbol seems trivial its important to look more deeply into it to see its cosmic implications.

The old women of the Chandra symbol are finding stimulation through imaginatively entering into the lives of other people. It feels to me that the way they bounce information and ideas off each other needs focus. Otherwise this activity could be just random and negative. At best, though, it can become a meditation on human nature and life, an activity of speculation that leads to insight and a deeper awareness of the workings of desire.

In the Omega symbol the Great Wall must be being seen at dawn or sunset, when the sun would be low in the sky and hence casting a huge shadow. To me the Great wall is a tremendous symbol of trying to shut something out, and of seeking protection. At night the shadow grows bigger and bigger. At dawn it starts to grow smaller and as the Sun rises it shrinks more and more.

There is something in this symbol about limits that is very important. The old ladies can’t really know all that is happening surrounding those people and events about whom they’re gossiping. Their knowledge is limited, but can be filled in by speculation. The greater a limitation the more potential it has of creating darkness.

The reason I chose this Mars/Neptune aspect in my chart is that I am currently experiencing transiting Neptune opposing my natal Mars. With these extremely slow moving transits involving the outer planets it can be very helpful to go back to the natal chart and study the original relationship between the two planets, for this will help you to see what the person is learning from the transit.

I very much feel, now, that my own personal and psychological limits are looming large in my mind — larger than every before. And like the old ladies, I’m thinking and thinking and doing much speculating. We might say the old ladies are “chewing” on information. That is what I feel like I’m doing. And there is this huge wall in front of me, which represents my biggest psychological blocks, and I am seeing how those blocks have overshadowed me for a very long time.

What to do? What I feel is that the wall needs to be respected. Its there for a reason. And, ah yes, it now comes to me, I’m trying to invade new and unknown territory within myself. I am needing to climb the wall and explore what’s on the other side. And to do this requires a refining (Neptune) of my ability to assert myself (Mars). Neptune always forces us to access our intuition. And so when I act (Mars) I am being forced to not just think endlessly about the rightness and/or wrongness about what I’m doing — not get caught up in all the inner gossip, but am needing to let that pure, inner Neptune voice guide me over the wall and into these new lands.

This is an instance of how the degree symbols can and will unfold if you allow yourself to be with them, allow them to sink into you and work their magic in your psyche.

The quincunx blends two planets in such a way that they keep losing each other and because they do are forced to pick each other back up, again and again. There cannot be steadiness here, but there can be a wonderfully shifting, changing, mutating, regenerating relationship, that grows in power as the person works with it.

The quincunx has gotten bad press because we’re so attached to wanting things to be stable, and certain, and solid. The quincunx is like dancing with an earthquake. It keeps coming at you in different ways, and you just have to keep moving with it, or, if it makes you stumble, get back up and keep dancing.

I have Sun/Jupiter quincunx, and it is a major defining aspect in my chart, for all of my planets are found on one side of this quincunx. So my enthusiasm for goals is something that I am continually losing and having to regenerate.

If an astrologer who was as inspired as I now am would have told me that years ago it would have made life a lot easier.

The novile aspect is one ninth of the zodiac, or 40 degrees. Everything I say here about the novile can also be applied to the bi-novile, which is 80 degrees, and the quadra-novile, which is 160 degrees. The tri-novile is not considered among this group because it is actually a trine.

The novile is that aspect which becomes a conjunction in the 9th harmonic. The Hindu astrologers say that the 9th harmonic is to the birth chart as the fruit is to the tree from which it grows. In other words, the ninth harmonic shows the future – what we are headed toward, what we are producing, what we are becoming. It is the goal of our chart.

If you read the 9th harmonic negatively, it can show what we might become in a negative sense, and thereby help us to know what sorts of things to avoid.

It is also possible to look at transits to the 9th harmonic. This will signify ways in which we are being pulled forward. For example, if Saturn transits a conjunction to the 9th harmonic Sun it can signify a time when we are learning to focus more on goals and to bring them down to earth, maybe make them more practical. How does this differ from Saturn transiting a conjunction to the natal Sun? When the natal Sun is transited by Saturn we are being forcibly made to examine goals and bring them more in alignment with spirit (Saturn being the most spiritual of the planets). When Saturn transits the Sun of the 9th harmonic there is a pull toward doing this – it is a possibility, but will remain a possibility unless we take the opportunity to actualize it. In other words, the 9th harmonic transits show the potential of progress – openings or opportunities which we ourselves need to actualize.

The Hindu astrologers also say that the 9th harmonic signifies the marriage partner, and can be thought of as the chart of our ideal mate. It makes sense that the person who we would be most attracted to would carry the same energy as our goals. Just as we are pulled through time toward what we are becoming, we are pulled to people whose energy will help us to become that.

This does not mean that our mate has to have a chart which exactly matches our ninth harmonic, but I have found that there is often a very strong resonance between the charts of people we are attracted to and our 9th harmonic.

Back to the novile: This aspect signifies energy that we are fostering in our being, energy that we need to make part of ourselves. Example: I have Nepune novile Mars. I am learning to allow my actions (Mars) to be guided more and more by my intuition (Neptune). A significant concept to remember with noviles is that they have a quality of inevitability – they ARE your destiny. So if I don’t allow my actions (Mars) to be guided more and more by my intuition, my actions may become chaotic, confused, unfocused – all negative Neptunian traits. In other words, as time goes on the novile will manifest – one way or the other.

Another example is my friend Sandra having Sun and Saturn novile Jupiter. In this lifetime she’s growing into shining her light and her sense of life’s purpose (Sun) in a generous, enthusiastic (Jupiter) way that can dispel the depression and cynicism of others. She’s also learning patience and perseverance (qualities of the Jupiter/Saturn combination), the ability to be disciplined and persistent in standing up for what she believes, and living it (once, again, qualities of the Jupiter/Saturn combination) Now: A VERY IMPORTANT POINT: of these two noviles in her chart, the Sun/Jupiter, and the Jupiter/Saturn, the Jupiter/Saturn one is 38 MINUTES CLOSER, AND IS THE CLOSEST ONE IN HER CHART. Whenever determining the power of an aspect, you always take into account which one is the closest. So the predominant fruit that the tree of her chart is producing is JUPITER/SATURN, which always signifies taking a moral stance, talking the talk and walking the walk – living it, baby. So you go, girl!

The quintile aspect is one-fifth of the zodiac, or 72 degrees. All that I’m going to tell you about it can also be applied to the bi-quintile, which is 144 degrees.

Marc Jones gave the keyword “talent” to this aspect. I would add to this an innate talent, that tends to manifest spontaneously and with a lot of raw vitality behind it. The five pointed star is the symbol of magic, and the 5-based quintile carries the energy of magic. The negative side of it is that it can be like the sorcerer’s apprentice. Remember the Disney film where the sorcerer leaves the laboratory and Mickey Mouse starts messing with the magic formula, creating out of a broom a being which can tote water from the well. Well, the broom shatters into many pieces and each piece generates another being which carries water and the laboratory floods. The sorcerer finally returns and cleans up Mickey’s mess.

The significance of this is that the energy of the quintile needs to be controlled and directed so that it doesn’t turn destructive.

I have a quintile between Mercury and Mars, which I love. Repartee is easy for me, as is arguing and using words to excite and compel. Negatively, if I get into saying (Mercury) destructive things (Mars), I can create a lot of bad karma very fast. When my mind gets going it can rev up with Martian passion, and I’ve had to work assiduously to learn how to keep it from spinning out of control.

Of course what I’ve said about the quintile per se has a feeling of Mars, in terms of its aliveness and vitality, and for this reason I think my Mercury/Mars quintile is rather easy to interpret, as are maybe all quintiles involving Mars. Jupiter quintiles also seem easy to interpret because of the enthusiastic quality of them – Jupiter being innately enthusiastic.

So let’s take an example which I feel is maybe less obvious: Sun quintile Saturn. Here the talent is for patience and control (Saturn) in focusing on a goal. Also a talent for bringing to light (Sun) the limitations at work in any situation. If this goes out of control a la quintile, it might manifest as being way too serious and obsessed with reaching a goal, or a rigidity (Saturn) of one’s ego (Sun). As Saturn signifies slowness, it could mean someone who can’t easily reach goals because of being so careful (Saturn) of everything connected with reaching the goal (Sun).

Or how about Saturn/Neptune quintile. This could mean a talent for practically and tangibly (Saturn) manifesting the visions of one’s imagination. As Saturn can mean negativity, Saturn/Neptune could also mean a talent for negative imaginings. We tend to always think that talent is a good thing, but any talent can be misused.

Moon/Saturn quintile could mean a talent for plumbing the depths (Saturn) of emotions (Moon), and/or for taking seriously (Saturn) the feelings of others.

What about quintile in forecasting work? Well, first of all we always have to keep in mind that the slower moving a planet the stronger the effect. So transiting quintiles coming from, say Uranus will be much stronger than one from transiting Mars. I think the most effective use of quintiles in forecasting is to look at them in the progressed chart, especially the day-for-a-year progressions. In looking at these we might take into account all progressed planets except for the progressed Moon, once again because its just going to produce too many aspects too frequently. But the other progressed planets forming quintiles will be felt – because they are INFREQUENT, that being the key thing in any transit or cycle that creates power. The Moon crosses your Venus every 28 days, but if Pluto ever does it, it will be ONCE IN A LIFETIME , and believe me YOU WILL FEEL IT.

The progressed quintile means that the natal planet’s energy is COMING TO LIFE in a manner signified by the progressed planet. Let’s say a progressed Venus is quintiling natal Mars. Here can arise a desire to act and assert oneself, and the emergence of the ability to do this in an alluring (Venus) manner, or a way that is easier (Venus) or more artful (Venus) than it has ever been before.

The quintile’s relationship to magic is that if you adopt a positive and confident attitude, miracles can happen, and the quintile is tending very strongly toward positivity and confidence. The successful performance of magic depends on intent, and the quintile spontaneously manifests a very pure creative intent, if the energy is not repressed.

The last thing I want to say right now about quintiles is that any attempt to repress their energy will lead to that energy coming out in some other way that is usually twisted or destructive. So if the energy is let out, and disburdened of dysfunctional obsessiveness, it can create a lot of beauty and upliftment in the world.

The septile aspect is 51 degrees and 26 minutes – or one seventh of a circle.
Seven is the number of transcendence and overcoming, a rising above problems so that we may seem them in the bigger picture.

In speaking of septiles anything I say can also be applied to the bi-septile — 102 degrees and 52 minutes — and the tri-septile — 154 degrees and 18 minutes. The orb on any of these should be no more than two degrees, with one degree being preferable. Of course, if you have several of them in your chart, you can always know which one will be the strongest by looking at the one with the closest orb.
All three of these septile frequencies have to do with destiny – something bigger and more far reaching than the conscious self. The best way to handle them is to go with your impulses where they are concerned – follow your guidance, and do what you feel an urge to do. Don’t let a need for justification stand in your way. the universe is trying to tell you something, and all you have to do is sharpen your ears and allow yourself to flow with the energy.

The septile can also make us feel that we need to do something in a particular way, and even if another way may seem more practical or accepted, we need to follow the way that feels right to us.

Here is an example: I have Venus and Mars in a septile aspect. The Venus/Mars pair of planet signifies EFFICIENCY, according to Marc Edmund Jones, in other words, how we get anything done. Venus and Mars is the urge to take action toward completing something. Mars is always how we begin anything, and Venus is how we end it. And it is true that I often get the urge to do something, RIGHT NOW, and I may not have any reason why. But I’ve found that if I go ahead and get it done it feels very good. By the same token if I fail to follow through on one of these urges, it can create inner psychic turmoil, cause discord and disharmony. The septile is asking us to allow ourselves to sympathetically vibrate with incoming cosmic energy, and if we just let go of our questionings and inhibitions and go for it, we get led to someplace we need to go. The septile is an energy we need to submit to, and to be taken over by.
My friend Sandra has Uranus and Neptune in a septile aspect. That pair has to do with spiritual obligation – taking on a responsibility for the good of humanity. She has hosted a Shaman from Brazil who comes and stays at her house, and who does healings on people. She is very drawn to the poets Shelly and Byron, who wre a unique (Uranus) idealists (Neptune), and an inspired (Uranus) visionaries (Neptune). She has the impulse, I’m sure, to be like them. The Uranus/Neptune pair is cosmic – it looks beyond mundane limitations, its vision piercing the veil of materiality and searching out the hidden realms. Give in to it, Sandra.

Another friend, Linda, has a Moon/Saturn septile which means that when she has a persistent (Saturn) feeling that keeps coming up, she needs to give it attention, check it out, see where it takes her. Also that unexplainable difficult or negative emotions can arise in her that are trying to lead her to some new realization or awareness.

It’s also good to check out septiles in your progressed chart, for they can show periods when you can receive new guidance to meet particular challenges.

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