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May 6, 2011

Potent Planetary Combination Brings Big News

A rare and formidable team-up of three powerful planets, called a triple conjunction, occurred over a three-day period from April 29 to May 1 (May 2 in Europe and east of there). I wrote about it in my Janet’s Plan-its 2011 astrological calendar and then anxiously awaited what would transpire then that would pack a punch. The deadly devastating tornado outbreaks in southeastern USA just days before that time didn’t really match the associations of the planets involved, but the demise of our nation’s biggest enemy on May 1-2 sure did! And in a way, even the Royal wedding on April 29 fit the bill.

Jupiter spends about a year in a sign, usually. This year, it speeds through the zodiac’s first sign, Aries (famous for quickness), in record time from late January to early June (after a brief foray into Aries 6/6 - 9/9 last year). It spent much of 2010 buddied up with wildcard Uranus zigzagging the border between the first and last degrees of the zodiac circle. This is the point the Sun traverses each year at the vernal equinox, ending winter and rebirthing toward the summer solstice. Get the feeling of the close of one era and the start of another? As the biggest planet in our solar system, Jupiter expands or exaggerates whatever it contacts. Uranus is the planet of revolution and the populace at large. So Jupiter was revved up to spur large protests, which began as soon as it entered Aries (a sign of impatience and anger) the second time on January 22. It didn’t take long for the Egyptian President Mubarak to succumb to the rising tide of change, resigning on Feb. 11 after just 18 days of huge demonstrations.

The grand finale of Uranus in the last sign of Pisces came March 11 when the earthquake and resulting tsunami hit Japan. I had correctly predicted “ocean-related news” and “suffering of the masses” then but I hadn’t anticipated anything like the ensuing fires, explosions and meltdowns in the nuclear reactors that added awful insult to the horrendous injury immediately upon as Uranus’s entry into Aries. It should have been easy enough to guess: Uranus is the planet related to electricity, explosions and surprises, including catastrophes, while Aries signifies fire.

By the time Uranus strode into Aries March 11 to settle in for a seven-year stay, unrest across the Middle East was well underway. On April Fool’s Day (in some US time zones; April 2nd in the east), Mars stormed into the sign it “rules” (a term denoting a strong association between a planet and a sign) for a five-week visit. By the end of the month, it would pass Jupiter, which had by then caught up to the newest planet, slow Eris, named for Mars’s bitchy sister and thought to represent strife. This is the triple conjunction I had circled on my calendar and worried that some tragedy would ensue. Historically it’s been affiliated with war and turmoil, though not exclusively. For instance, at its last occurrence (in January 1940), it coincided with the first demonstration of FM radio to the FCC (Jupiter rules all forms of long distance communication and Mars relates to newness). But a Mars-Jupiter combo can spell a big conflict or attack, and blended with Eris, it certainly looked like trouble, at least for someone. As we came closer to May Day, I began to wonder if the big news would involve taking out Ghadafi. But a different prey was being sniffed down. By the weekend, the Mars’ relation to leadership and decisiveness showed itself as what’s been called a “gutsy decision” on the part of President Obama in ordering the attack on Osama bin Laden.

The exact moment his death has not been disclosed but it’s safe to say that the final hours of the decision-making do align with the Moon’s quick passage over the triple conjunction midday on Sunday, May 1. By the time of the mission that night, the Moon (which moves about a degree every two hours) was about three degrees past Eris, Jupiter and Mars. As the heavenly body that moves fastest around the zodiac, the Moon is the ultimate timer for events and showed its thrust once again.

When I think of all the disasters I had worried about prior to this big planetary line-up, I am grateful that the main manifestation was the culmination of a decade-long manhunt. BUT – and this is a big but – it remains to be seen if Eris’s association with chaos will bring unintended and unwanted repercussions in the future. A time to keep your eye on will be around May 9, when Mercury and Venus, currently traveling closely together, pass Eris (forming another triple conjunction, though a less volatile one) at the same degree of the May Day weekend triple conjunction. Mercury signals news. Venus is generally peaceful and benign. Considering they’re in Aries, there could be aggression in an attempt at balance (which Venus also rules). Already we’re seeing adversarial discussions domestically about the potential role of “enhanced interrogation” in obtaining the information to track down bin Laden and heated political disagreements about whether to release the photographic evidence of the deed. Did I mention that Jupiter is related to philosophy and politics?

Another key astrological feature present at the time of the bin Laden operation was a precise Mercury-Neptune connection, indicative of hidden information and clandestine activities, as well as the “treasure trove” of al Qaeda data procured in the process. (Nearby Venus, the planet related to worth and assets, hints that there will be much of value here.)

As the weekend commenced, all the world watched the royal wedding in London between Prince William, likely a future king, and the regal commoner, Kate Middleton. Though I wouldn’t have pegged the date as particularly auspicious astrologically on its own, it turns out to be quite good for their charts, fortunately. When combining their individual birth charts into a blended chart (called a composite), we find that Venus, the love planet, was visiting exactly at their Sun degree, the key indicator for them as a couple. At the moment they were declared “husband and wife” (11:20 AM), the Mercury-Venus combination (literally meaning “words of love and marriage”) straddled the exact top of the chart, the point indicating status, thus their status changed with the pronouncement. In the wedding chart’s top sector, related to public standing and reputation, was the Mars-Jupiter-Eris trio, representing the enormity (Jupiter) of the event, which represented a new era (Mars) for British royalty welcoming a strong non-royal woman (Eris) into their ranks. Kate, now titled the Duchess of Cambridge, really does embody the best side of Eris and in her chart, we see Eris at the eastern horizon, the area showing one’s persona and individuality.

Between these two important news events, the Mars-Jupiter-Eris conjunction turned out not to be so bad after all – well, except for al Qaeda.

The May 2011 episode of my astrology show, Looking Up, discusses these topics further. It should be available in the archive for viewing by May 13 or shortly thereafter.