Wednesday, February 16, 2011

SHORT STORIES by John Marchesella

SHORT STORIES by John Marchesella

Less than a year ago, Saturn and Pluto were in transit to the angles of the chart of Iceland, indicating the eruption of volcanic ash. Last year’s eclipses were keyed into those transits too.

Now, these planets have inched forward to form significant aspects to the chart of Egypt, representing a dramatic eruption of another kind. And again, the recent eclipses play a role in the revolution.

According the Nicholas Campion’s “Book of World Horoscopes,” a most trusted authority on the charts of nations, Egypt’s birth data is March 14, 1922, 10:43 P.M. Cairo, 31 East 15, 30 North 30.

We find the MC of Egypt at 4 Libra 06, closely conjunct natal Saturn at 5 Libra 05 Rx, forming a T-square with Venus at 1 Aries 50 and Pluto at 7 Cancer 56 Rx. Obviously, transiting Pluto in Capricorn is having a heyday around these degrees and turning this T-square into a Grand Square, bringing underlying social tensions explosively to the surface.

Transiting Jupiter in Aries is weaving through these degrees too, perhaps adding fuel to the fires of the people of Egypt.

Also in the 10th house of the chart of Egypt are the Moon at 14 Libra 24 and Jupiter, ruler of the chart, at 16 Libra 31 Rx, clearly affected by the recent station of Saturn. The symbolism of a station is “a grinding halt in order for things to come to a head.”

The Solar Eclipse of January 4th was closely in square aspect to the Moon too.

We are only early in to all of these transits, and Uranus in Aries is on the horizon, also applying to that natal T-square, so there is still much to unfold and evolve.

However, while each of these planets has something to say about each part of the story in Egypt, it is a clear example of Pluto in Capricorn bringing down the systems of the Old Man that do not serve the people, any of the people of the world.

* * *

Add speaking of Pluto, but on its lighter side, I was delighted to see Mike Brown, the man who instigated the dwarfing Pluto, the promoting of Ceres, and who discovered Sedna and Eris, at New York’s Hayden Planetarium (where, yes, Pluto is long removed from the model of the solar system), on a publicity tour for his memoir, “How I Killed Pluto and Why It Had It Coming,” which I reviewed here some weeks ago. (The review can still be found on the blogspot of NCGR-New York,

There are not enough compliments for him and his presentation: affable, witty, warm, article, very well humored and passionate about the Universe. And how can he not be with Libra Rising and four planets in Gemini, including Venus as the most elevated in his chart. Three of those planets, by the way, are in the infamous mutable T-square of 1965 and they sit in the 8th house! Who else would dare to demote Pluto! But it was a joy to see an astronomer with as much love of the sky as we, astrologers, have.

His presentation focused in his discovery of Eris and his challenge to have it accepted as a planet by the International Astronomical Union, which led to the dwarfing of Pluto, et al.

Amidst quite a bit of the humor and poetic imagery he used to describe the planets, he referred to Neptune, ironically, with pity and put down. Evidently, the mysteries of its astronomical nature confound astronomers about the outer limits of Universe. Brown’s comment was, “Poor Neptune, He gets blamed for whatever can’t be explained by astronomers, but He does deserve it because actually He’s a very sneaky planet!” Methinks, Dr. Brown knows a thing or two about astrology that he’s not letting on to publicly! Or perhaps he’s just really tapping into the depths of the Collective. In any case, it’s nice to be in the back pocket of a renowned astronomer.

Brown is very generous with his knowledge, and I encourage you to visit his website, to learn more about the process of dwarfing astronomical Pluto while still respecting the astrological Pluto.

* * *

Control freaks of the astrology community, ALERT! Have you seen the Void of Course Moon schedule for this year!

Not only because of Neptune’s ingress into Pisces, (but as Dr. Brown said, He does get blamed for things, and in this case, rightly so), but particularly when that happens, most of the planets will be in very early degrees of the signs, making for long periods of Void of Course Moons, not to mention the havoc that comes with them….unless you know how to handle the Moon’s Void.

If you look ahead in your ephemeris (and pleeeeze, new students of astrology, get some version of an ephemeris, and not just rely on your computer program), you will see weeks, such as the week of April 26th, June 27th, July 5th, which are mainly Void, and many other whole days scattered through the year with such long periods.

So, if you are a person, as I am, who has to have things running like a well-oiled machine, then plan your errands, appointments and to-do lists carefully and efficiently, as well as fulfilling those lists and tasks, when the Moon is NOT Void, and keep taking those yoga classes, meditations and daily routines when the Moon IS Void.

Am I advocating fear of the Void of Course Moon? Of course, not! Fear of the astrological gods is silly. But reverence for them is smart. That’s what’s meant in the wisdom of “For every season, there is a purpose under heaven.” Know the astrological season, and you’ll know your purpose.

Sunday, February 13, 2011


Quite exciting times in Egypt as our friend Uranus planet of liberation, freedom, revolution, equality, fraternity, democracy and chaos is at it again. Let’s read the astrological symbolism in a simple and straightforward fashion. Uranus is at the final degrees of Pisces, the last sign of the zodiac. Pisces and the 12th house are about enslavement and prisons and the Egyptian people have been enslaved and imprisoned for quite a while. The dreams and imagination of what is possible in Pisces is being awakened by Uranus in Aries. As the planet enters the first sign of the zodiac revolution, new beginnings and a pioneering spirit are in order. Everything that has been dormant and brewing in the dark is ready to break out into a new vision. It’s the birth we all wait for in life in order to take action. Aries is a war sign and the military is taking over in the interim before democracy has a chance to unfold. The military is sending signals it will be committed to a transition to democracy. According to global news reports Egyptian Army Generals will amend the constitution to allow free elections by September.

The horoscope of modern Egypt is set for June 18, 1953 at 11:30pm Cairo. "Realizing that their time had come, the radical [army] officers engineered a second coup on 18-19 June, the culmination of which was the proclamation of the Republic at 11:30 p.m. GMT on 18 June in Cairo. . . ." Campion, "The Book of World Horoscopes" (Second Edition), p. 144.

In this chart Saturn is at 20.34 Libra. President Mubarak resigned on Friday, February 11, 2011 as transiting Saturn is at 17 Libra; Egypt’s Saturn return. President Mubarak took power on October 14, 1981 after the assassination of Anwar El Sadat when Saturn was at 13.51 Libra. This is the Saturn return of his ascendancy to power as well. For world leaders Saturn returns are either an enhancement of power and reputation or a falling from grace. Essentially what we have here beginning in 1953, is that at every Saturn return in Libra there has been changes to the government, structures, traditions and Egypt’s reputation and place in the world. Libra is a diplomatic sign so we can hope for consciousness to rule supreme in the sign of its exaltation.

Solar Eclipses are waves of new energy. The most recent one was on January 4, 2011 at 14° Capricorn. In Egypt’s 1953 birth chart this degree lies opposite its natal Uranus at 17° Cancer. In President’s Mubarak’s ascent to Presidency chart of 10/14/81 the eclipse degree squares the Saturn in that chart at 14° Libra.

Finally the current Solar Eclipse belongs to Saros Series 13 North. To quote Bernadette Brady in her book “The Eagle and the Lark” regarding this Saros Cycle: “This is an eclipse family of groups and associations. Its energy is about large, ambitious group projects. These group projects will require a separation or the breaking of a bond that already exists. The individual (country) may well experience this eclipse initially as a separation and then as joint achievement.”

This is self explanatory as it relates to the great country of Egypt.

Joseph Addeo

Thursday, February 3, 2011

HOW I KILLED PLUTO And Why It Had It Coming


And Why It Had It Coming

Mike Brown, 267 pages, Speigel & Grau, New York, 2010, $25

Reviewed by John Marchesella

God giveth and God taketh away. And Mike Brown took away our beloved Pluto as a planet, but he gave us this wonderful memoir of his time from 1999, when he had an un-scientific hunch that a tenth planet would be found beyond Pluto and he made an even more un-scientific bet on it with a colleague; to a bit passed the time when Pluto was lessened to dwarfed status, Ceres was promoted to dwarf planet, and his own discovery, Eris, was also recognized as a dwarf planet.

The author provides the inside story on the compelling news that we watched unfold in the New York Times a few years ago, when the International Astronomical Union was trying to decide on Pluto’s status according to the definition of the term, “planet,” or as Brown argues, the non-definition of “planet.” He speaks about his own inner process of giving up the glory of discovering the tenth planet, Eris, which had to go to dwarf if Pluto was going down too.

Even before his work on Eris, Brown gives the story of also discovering Quaoar and Sedna, as well as the frustrations and injustices of the politics of the solar system that IAU is.

If you are thinking this is little more than a science journal (as I did when I cracked the book open), then think again! Brown is an engaging, warm and well-humored writer with, not only an obvious passion for the skies, but also a passion for educating about the skies. He brings astronomy down to earth and shows us how the planets are all around us in our everyday lives if we just pay attention.

Most surprisingly, this turns out to be a love story. Thoroughly woven into the fabric of the astronomy is the very romantic story of meeting Diane, the woman who would become his wife, and the birth of their child, Lilah. These events in his life closely coincided with the discoveries of Sedna and Eris, respectively. In his very personal revelations of love and parenthood, Brown shows how the individual is a microcosm for the greater Universe. Here, and in his descriptions of how he chose the mythic names for his discoveries as well as for his daughter, we see that Brown is as much poet as he is scientist, and all human.

Astrologers will be glad to know, on occasion, he makes a brief mention of us in his book in no derogatory way! He speaks of our rapid use of newly discovered planetary bodies in our horoscopes, but more philosophically, he states early in his story about his love of the skies, “It’s impossible to know, but it’s always hard not to feel that in some way, for me at least, perhaps the early astrologers were right: Perhaps my fate actually was determined by the positions of the planets at the moment of my birth.”

Back in the day of his trials and tribulations with the IAU when Eris was still known as Xena, I had an e-mail exchange with Brown, regarding his birth data. With his permission, I used it in article about his chart. It is repeated here for your information: June 5, 1965, 2:35 P.M., Huntsville, AL.