Obama’s choice for the Supreme Court: Sonia Sotomayor

Sonia SotomayorPresident Barack Obama just announced his pick for David Souter’s seat on the US Supreme Court:  Sonia Sotomayor.  Ms. Sotomayor would not only add another female voice to the Court, but she  would also be the first Hispanic to serve on the highest court of the land.

Originally appointed by President HW Bush, Ms.Sotomayor enjoys wide support on both the Democratic and Republican sides of the aisle and was praised today by the President as someone with “a common touch and a sense of compasion.” A graduate of Princeton University and Yale University Law school, she grew up in the housing projects of the Bronx, New York, and is a second-generation woman of Puerto Rican heritage.

So who is Ms.Sotomayor?  Her astrological chart (born 6/25/1954, time unknown, Bronx NY) shows that she was born under the sign of Cancer which bestows a fierce love for family and a sense of pride for one’s ancestral roots.  Her Sun is in an extremely beneficial conjunction to Jupiter, the planet of expansion, optimism and abundance which is usually a signal of confidence and the success that results from a positive attitude.  Jupiter is also the planet that rules the law through an interest in shared thoughts and ideas, and clearly Ms. Sotomayor is well suited for the field of law.

This Sun/Jupiter conjunction is opposed by the planet Mars,a planetary combination which bestows a forceful personality that can be somewhat combative.  Ms. Sotomayor is obviously a hard worker with Mars (drive) in the responsible and success-oriented sign of Capricorn.  Her Mars forms a harmonious sextile to Saturn, ruler of Capricorn, which enhances her love of discipline and her ability to do whatever it takes to get the job done.

Although Ms.Sotomayor’s Mercury (thoughts and the mental process) is in Cancer, which tends to signify an emotional thinker, her chart also contains a tight conjunction of Mercury to Uranus (innovation and change).  This shows that she is not afraid to embrace new ideas and explore new ways to solve old problems although the nurturing quality of the sign of Cancer will filter through every one of her decisions.  Mercury in her chart is retrograde, meaning it appeared to be moving backwards at the time that she was born.  In a natal chart that can signify someone who is less adept in the world of communication, and there is some criticism about Ms.Sotomayor’s ability to be able to clearly articulate legal details.

With four planets plus the South Node of the moon falling in the sign of Cancer, this is the strongest dynamic in her chart. Cancer people are sensitive and can be shy, but they will also fiercely protect their own – this includes not only their own people, but also their own ideas.  Anyone who underestimates the strength of the Cancer individual does so at their peril, because the tenacity of their claws can be astounding.

Ms. Sotomayor is going through a powerful transit of Pluto right now that is setting off the Mars/Sun opposition in her chart.  Transits of Pluto usually take us through cycles of tremendous change and transformation, and in this Pluto cycle began affecting her back in February of this year.  At the time that the announcement occurred Pluto was nearly exactly conjunct Mars in her chart.

From a broader viewpoint, the appointment of an Hispanic female to the Supreme Court marks a turning point for the identity of the nation as a whole.  Pluto (transformation) in Ms.Sotomayor’s chart exactly conjuncts Chiron (wounding and healing) in the US chart, signifying that she will be an instrument for healing the adjustment problems that have resulted from a changing population and resulting identity crisis in the United States.

The 27 Club and the Progressed Lunar Return

Progressed lunar returnI found this article in a link from Astrococktail about the frequency of musicians who have been found dead at age 27.  Most of us know about the potentially problematic experiences of the Saturn Return at age 28, but this was a connection I had not thought much about.

Before each Saturn Return we all experience something called the Progressed Lunar Return which occurs when the Progressed Moon returns to its place in the natal chart.  (The progressed chart marks the passage of time and the evolution of the natal chart as we age and evolve.)  The Progressed Moon takes 27-28 years to complete the cycle around the natal chart, and it generally marks an opening of the emotional body that can be exhilarating or painful, depending on the chart and the way the individual handles challenges.  The Progressed Lunar Return prepares us for the Saturn Return the following year.

Here are just a few examples of the musicians in the 27 Club:

Brian Jones (2/28/42, time unknown), original member of the Rolling Stones, died July 3, 1969 by drowning.  His natal Moon was extremely stressed by a conjunction of Saturn and Chiron, and at the time of his death transiting Saturn was exactly square to that difficult triple conjunction that included his natal Moon.

Jimi Hendrix died about six months after his Progressed Lunar Return, with transiting Saturn was crossing the IC of his chart (the cusp of the Fourth House which in some systems is connected to death).  The Moon in Hendrix’s chart was not particularly stressed, conjuncting Jupiter which typically confers a positive and confident attitude, but that Moon/Jupiter conjunction made an exact square to the Midheaven of his chart and it is likely that his career (Midheaven) pulled him away from a satisfying emotional life (Moon/Jupiter in Cancer).  The Progressed Lunar Return would have brought this dissatisfaction to a head and the transit of Saturn would have forced matters to a crisis point.

Janis Joplin died five months after her Progressed Lunar Return.  The sensitivity of her Cancer Moon was squared by Neptune which can show emotional imbalance as well as a heightened creative power.  During the months prior to her death, transiting Chiron and Uranus were opposed in the sky, and both planets were exactly square to Janis’s Moon at the time that her Progressed Lunar Return was opening her emotional body and creating even more vulnerability.

Both Joplin and Hendrix had an exact conjunction of Chiron (Wounded Healer) to the North Node (evolutionary purpose), suggesting a potential crisis in the completion of the Earth Mission.

There is no need to fear the Progressed Lunar Return, any more than we need to fear other challenging transits.  There is great potential for growth and the exhilaration of transformation in the more difficult planetary events, but we must be willing to open ourselves up to new possibilities of awareness.

Update: Laura Boomer-Trent emailed me that the Astrological Lodge of London had done work in this area back in 2004 and you can find more about that here including an interesting but complex calculation connecting the Uranus and Neptune trines here.

Sunday Poetry for the New Moon Jupiter/Chiron/Neptune conjunction

Love Said to Me

by Shahram Shiva

I worship the moon.
Tell me of the soft glow of a
candle light
and the sweetness of my moon.

Don’t talk about sorrow,
tell me of that treasure,
hidden if it is to you,
then just remain silent.

Last night
I lost my grip on reality
and welcomed insanity.
Love
saw me and said,
I showed up.
Wipe your tears
and be silent.

I said, O Love
I am frightened,
but it’s not you.
Love said to me,
there is nothing that is not me.
be silent.

I will whisper secrets in your ear
just nod yes
and be silent.

A soul moon
appeared in the path of my heart.
How precious is this journey.

I said, O Love
what kind of moon is this?
Love said to me,
this is not for you to question.
be silent.

I said, O Love
what kind of face is this,
angelic, or human?
Love said to me,
this is beyond anything that you know.
Be silent.

I said, please reveal this to me
I am dying in anticipation.
Love said to me,
that is where I want you:
Always on the edge,
be silent.
You dwell in this hall of
images and illusions,
leave this house now
and be silent.

I said, O Love,
tell me this:
Does the Lord know you are
treating me this way?
Love said to me,
yes He does,
just be totally…
totally… silent

Astrological Commentary:

The New Moon in Gemini instills us with a deep desire to talk about our experiences – to make themselves known, and to process them through the conscious mind.

The first stanza of this poem, “I worship the moon. Tell me of the soft glow of a candle light and the sweetness of my moon,” reflects the sweet hopefulness of the combination of Jupiter and Neptune  – the longing (Neptune) for a divine experience combined with Jupiter’s positive expression of hope and faith.

“Don’t talk about sorrow, tell me of that treasure, hidden if it is to you, then just remain silent,” we begin to see the emergence of Chiron which experiences the sorrow of longing, but then combines with Neptune to probe beneath the obvious to find that which is hidden, and to experience it in Neptune’s deep contemplation.

“Last night I lost my grip on reality and welcomed insanity. Love saw me and said, I showed up. Wipe your tears and be silent.”  Chiron impels us to release the hold on what we think is structured reality to allow the true experience of our inner soul to make itself known.  Jupiter grants the faith to realize that in the midst of our psychic pain, the peace of Neptune lies within.

“I said, O Love I am frightened, but it’s not you. Love said to me, there is nothing that is not me. be silent.”  Again, we feel the fear under Chiron’s tutelage, but Jupiter give us faith and Neptune the experience of deep silence and communion with pure Love.

“I said, please reveal this to me I am dying in anticipation. Love said to me, that is where I want you: Always on the edge, be silent. You dwell in this hall of images and illusions, leave this house now and be silent.”  We are so impatient for perfect peace and for the end of all suffering (Neptune).  Yet perfect peace comes from the surrender of desire, even at the edge of realization.  We must release every drop of attachment to the process and desire to flee from our human consciousness (Chiron),

In the silence of the NOW, the total silence where Love can fill the gaps of experience, that is where the peace of knowing lies.

New Moon in Gemini!

New MoonThe Gemini New Moon  which takes place at 8:10 am on Sunday morning EDT.  This New Moon is exactly trine the North Node of the Moon, revealing this as an event with the potential for real significance in our lives.  The North Node assists us in our quest to realize our soul’s purpose, and a new beginning is possible here, especially in the area of your chart where the New Moon falls.

The New Moon chart includes a challenging square from Mercury to the triple conjunction of Jupiter, Chiron and Neptune, and a harmonious sextile from Mercury to Uranus.  This suggests that the mind will not be of great help now unless we let go of our old ways of thinking about our lives and allow ourselves to expand our thinking to allow for new possibilities.  This is an event for the heart and for the soul, linking the two in a completely new way.

A harmonious sextile from Mars to the triple conjunction helps to provide the fire and enthusiasm to keep us inspired so that we can take advantage of the powerful energy available now.

“Very bad mercury retrograde”

I had to laugh when I was looking at the stats and found that several people used this phrase to find this site.  I’ve had quite a few emails complaining about the intensity of this Mercury retrograde, and if the past week has been super-intense for you you’re not alone.

This Jupiter/Chiron/Neptune conjunction is kicking some serious butt, and ever since Mercury retrograded back into Taurus it’s been approaching a square to the triple conjunction.  So not only are we having communication difficulties, these difficulties are bringing up a host of other issues at the same time.  It doesn’t help that both Chiron and Neptune are slowing down as they prepare to change direction in a few days and that intensifies their effect.

Chiron makes it difficult to hide from ourselves, and Neptune makes it difficult to see things clearly. It’s a complicated combination of planets, and the square to Mercury challenges our ability to intellectualize and clarify the events in our lives.  There IS a purpose to all of this madness – to encourage us to live in truth and become ever more aware of the spiritual underpinnings of our lives.  Not always an easy thing to do on Planet Earth!

Mercury changes direction on May 31 which will bring some relief, but it will then move into position to square Chiron and Neptune once more on June 9.  This is serious soul work time, and that is never easy.