Astrology Secrets Revealed: Eric Francis Answers Your Questions
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Sagittarius is the mutable fire sign. Mutabilty is the quality of diffusing or dissipating energy, giving way to something else, which is why it always ends each season and precedes one of the major solar events (such as the forthcoming solstice). Fire is the creative passion that drives all the cosmos. This is a bizarre combination (fire being rather yang, mutability being rather yin), and as a product of this cosmic laboratory we get highly a diverse collection of odd and incomparable specimens.
What other sign possibly could give you William Blake, Jane Fonda, Philip K. Dick, Uri Geller, Emily Dickinson, Robert Hand, Jimi Hendrix, Margaret Mead, Steve Speilberg, Mark Twain, Jonathan Cainer and my old friend Karen Pardini, I ask you?
For a long time, astrologers have noticed something a little bit "beyond this reality" about Sagittarians. They associated it with foreign travel, long voyages, learning about culture, higher education, libraries and collections of knowledge, getting the word out through publishing, and the higher spiritual energies that inspire people to do their greatest work. In fact Sagittarius sees beyond this world well enough to see this world in context of the rest of creation. As a result, its natives often feel like strangers in a strange land, and as such, I would not be surprised at all if Moses were born under this sign (we don't have his chart). Sagittarians, while they can seem like iconoclasts, tend to be quite concerned with cosmic law, ethics, and philosophy -- and they can just be quite creative about all of it. If you don't have a good philosophy, ask someone born in Sagittarius.
As the centuries progressed and we learned more about the nature of space, Sagittarius -- which is an actual direction in the cosmos; like the other signs, it is a kind of place -- became the scene of several major discoveries. One is the galactic core. We live on an island in space called a galaxy -- the Milky Way (or Milky Weg if you happen to be in Holland). This island contains hundreds of billions of stars with arms that spiral out into space. We live on a star toward one of the outer regions, between two of the arms. If you want to look from our point of view on Earth in the direction of the center or core, you look in the direction of Sagittarius. To be exact, you look in the direction of 27 degrees of Sagittarius, which the Sun crosses every year around Dec. 17.
Think of it this way. When you look at the Sun this time of year, you are looking straight at the core of the galaxy. Imagine the galactic arms spreading off fro the Sun like wings, steeply inclined. When Saggies are born, the Sun lines up with the galaxy. Aren't these people starting to make a little more sense now?
Then came major discovery number two, made in 1986 (with Chiron exactly opposing it): The Great Attractor. As scientific equipment became more sophisticated, we began to be able to see into space and pick up things not visible to the eye, or even a telescope. Radio signals and invisible light at odd ends of the spectrum provided this unusual ability to see.
The Great Attractor, located at about 14 degrees of Sagittarius and two arc minutes (with which the Sun aligns each year around Dec. 7) is the largest, heaviest, most massive, most prodigious thing known in all of space. It is invisible, but it is very much there, pulling toward it a million galaxies at a speed of 24 million miles per day, including our own galaxy, and Andromeda, and the entire local group that surrounds us.
That's one a heck of a vacuum cleaner. What it actually is, scientists are not quite sure; so you can read up on it, I'll include some links below, including a piece I wrote a couple of years ago that quote astrologer Phil Sedgwick, who gives talks and makes really good tapes about how to interpret this and other galactic points in charts (and whose methods I have adopted for this point).
So, in Sagittarius, we have two examples of the center of space; local space in the form of the galactic core, the core of a few hundred billion stars; and the Great Attractor. Does this give us a few clues as to why so many Sagittarians seem larger than life?
Also currently in Sagittarius, we have the planet Pluto (discovered 1930), and much newer planets Ixion (discovered 2001) and Quaoar (discovered in 2002). During the next month, the Sun will go over all of these points, and Mercury will be retrograde in this vicinity as well. This should be yet another an exciting and unpredictable little curve on the teacup ride known as life.
Here's a bit on the Great Attractor:
Here's my article on the Great Attractor, with some multimedia links that hopefully still work. It's connected to a whole essay series on Sagittarius.
Here's a nice collection of images of Andromeda Galaxy, which is like our twin in outer space:
Here are two of your questions this week.
First, I want to correct a fact in your letter, and bring readers up to date. Monday of this week, former president George H.W. Bush, father of the current U.S. president and former director of the CIA, was to travel to Ecuador from Houston, Texas for a conference. The private jet that was scheduled to pick him up crashed while making its final approach to Hobby Airport in Houston, killing both pilots and a flight attendant.
First the factual correction; it's good to start with the grounding of accurate facts before embarking on the practice of astrology. According to an article Wednesday in the Dallas Morning News, "National Transportation Safety Board investigators haven't ruled out any causes for the crash, which occurred when the plane's right side clipped a 120-foot light pole on a road three and a quarter miles south of Hobby." The story continues, "'A jet would typically be at 800 to 1,000 feet during that part of its descent', said Lauren Peduzzi, NTSB spokeswoman."
On its face, this would seem to be an accident; had Bush been on the airplane, or had he been on the airplane earlier that day and still at least potentially aboard at the time of the crash, the notion of an attempt on his life would be more plausible. Still, it seems strange that a private jet anywhere near Bush being on board -- conceivably, one of the most well-protected men in the world, and who can afford the most competent pilots -- would go down.
In fact, 'near the crash' is exactly where he was, waiting for his plane to come in, and it was laying in wreckage three miles away, along with a crew he had flown with many times before and says he knew well. That would be enough to make anyone nervous.
The Dallas Morning News story continues with the statement that the pilots had 19,000 hours of flight time each. There was a thick fog in Houston that morning and the Sun had not come up, but landing by instrument is a basic pilot skill, and has been since long before computers and advanced radar adorned cockpits. At that close distance to the runway, a difference in proper altitude of 800 feet or more is quite a lot, particularly for such seasoned pilots who fly worldwide under all weather conditions (rather than, say, just in southern California, where the weather is always pretty nice).
Further, the pilots were warned about the low altitude as they were approaching. And with a two-person team, one person's job is to watch the instruments while the other's is to fly the airplane. Apparently these two pilots had worked together extensively, which will become a factor in the investigation.
Not knowing very much about the operation of jet planes, I called my old friend George Kirkish, who is a jet flight instructor up in Washington State. He explained a bit about instrument landings, that is, landings using radar when you are approaching in the dark and the fog. Apparently there are several different kinds of instrument approaches that the pilots could have chosen from amongst. The one being used has to be set manually into a piece of equipment called the CDI or course deviation indicator. The different approaches involve the different types of radar that are available. Some are like being guided by lights; the most precise kind is like being drawn into a funnel toward the runway. As of now, we do not know which type of approach was being used.
"The CDI has an annunciator [which sounds off things like altitude with a beep], and you choose your type of approach," George explained. "Unless that's set properly, and it's easy to overlook, you can have a problem. You can be a couple of miles off, and consequently be coming in dumb and happy and find you're making an approach into a forest someplace. In today's modern cockpit you've got a lot going on. You've got so many pieces of equipment in there, you could overlook something. But you would think that with two guys that experienced flying around the ex-prez, they're not going to make such a simple mistake."
So there is definitely an issue in question to take to the jury of astrology. Was this pilot error, was it a malfunction, or was it something else? This is a job for horary astrology, which is the root system beneath the tree of modern natal astrology. Let's look at the chart for the crash, and embark on this mystery -- and hopefully not overlook anything too obvious, like the altitude. This discussion will be much more technically astrological than usual -- which is the nature of horary. It is a branch of the astrological art that is heavily dependent on rules. I will try to keep it clear as possible, taking you through every step. Regular readers of this column should have no problem following along.
Here's the radix, also called a figure or horoscope:
Notice the Sun below the eastern horizon; it is before daybreak.
Looking at the ascendant first, we get Scorpio rising in the chart of a death mystery. That's certainly an appropriate enough beginning to the discussion. The degree rising is 22 (anything above 21 degrees even, up to 23 even, is called 22 degrees, because it's occupying the 22nd degree of the sign). The Moon is not void of course; it is in Aries, making a close opposition aspect to Jupiter, which may become a factor. Jupiter is a planet associated with aviation and the Moon is approaching it directly. These are a few checkpoints that the chart is good to read; you have to kick the tires and give the wheel a preliminary check first. (I personally agree with the ancient rule of horary astrology that too early of an ascendant, or too late of one, makes for a difficult or inappropriate chart to read, and I also feel that it's best not to deal with the void of course Moon unless you really have to.) One last factor: Saturn is not occupying the 1st or 7th houses, which is a red light. Many horary astrologers like to have Saturn away from those houses if they are going to read a horary chart. So, we're ready to go. However, Saturn in the 9th house (traditionally, the house of astrology) says to proceed slowly and carefully, and applying tradition carefully.
When checking a "whodunit" chart, or a "who done what?" chart as is often the case, we really want to know about three houses. One is the 7th house, of open enemies and partners. The second is the 8th house, which tells us about the nature and cause of death -- always essential to analyze in such a chart. The third is the 12th house, which tells us about secret enemies. Between one of those three houses, usually a combination, you can figure out what's going on. Also the 1st house ruler may tell you about what happened to the subject of the question.
Now, here's an important note, for horary astrology and all other forms of astrology. When we read a house, we don't just read the contents of the house; we look to the location and condition of the house ruler. The house ruler is the planet that rules the sign on the cusp of the house. Learn now how to spot the house ruler. If you get into the habit of studying the house ruler and not just the contents of a house, you will see astrology a lot more deeply. The location of the house ruler tells you where to look for the action of the house; on which of the world's 12 main stages the drama will unfold. Often, it happens out of the house in question.
Here's an easy example. Taurus is on the 7th house cusp of this chart. The 7th cusp is the right-hand line. In horary, the 7th represents partners of all kinds, as well as open enemies. See Taurus over there on the right side? Venus is the ruler of Taurus. When we go looking for Venus, we find her in the following condition:
-- In the 12th house of secret enemies and hidden things;
The novel just took a very, very strange turn on page two. In fact, I would really have to wrack my imagination to come up with a 7th house ruler in a stranger, more utterly bizarre location, one that you could say less about for sure. I say this for several reasons. One involves the house placement; we have the "open enemy" showing up in the house of "secret enemies." Also as the ruler of Libra -- on the 12th house -- it is a double significator for any secret enemies that come into the reading. That is, the most obvious suspect is also the least obvious suspect -- or, someone normally very well concealed comes out into the open for some obvious reason. Or, someone obvious is working in a second capacity.
But most weird of all is Venus's degree position: located at the very end of the very last degree of this vastly important sign, Libra, the sign of relationships in a world made of little else -- just four arc minutes from the end. When you see a planet doing something like that, imagine that it's a blinking red light. Let's look at the exact degree and minute of Venus: 29 degrees and 56 arc minutes of Libra. An arc minute is a sixtieth (1/60) of a degree. The entire zodiac is a total of 21,600 arc minutes around. It's the smallest and most precise measure used by astrologers -- and only the fussiest of them. Measuring arc minutes is like using a ruler to determine how far it is from Toledo to Santa Fe, along the highway, not the map.
Venus so close to Scorpio is the very image of a near miss, or a close call on the part of the potential perpetrator! The word is "almost."
This position of Venus, under the friendly cover of Libra, also reminds me of someone concealed by a thin sheet of paper or a subtle disguise -- or more accurately, in the mists of the 12th house, where there is always that measure of fog and deniability. [If you want to know how the 12th house feels, think of when you have a very strange dream in the morning, and later in the day, bits and pieces come back to you, which you can push back under consciousness, deny the meaning of, but ultimately not escape the feeling of. That's the 12th.]
This particular degree at the end of Libra happens to be rather meaningful based on past associations; we've seen it two times before. Most recently, it was the degree where the Moon-Mars occultation occurred the night of Yasser Arafat's death, thus associated with the entire recent history of the Middle East. In fact, that aspect, which was at Libra 29 degrees and 58 minutes of arc, came just two arc minutes away from the position of Venus in this chart. If it's a coincidence, it's a very precise one. But it gets better.
Second, going back in time, we saw it the night that George W. Bush "won" the "election" of 2000. That position was the exact, precise, to the arc minute location of the Mercury station direct the night of Nov. 8, 2000: 29 degrees of Libra and 56 minutes of arc. [For those who need a refresher, Mercury was retrograde in Scorpio all during the campaign of 2000, until Election Day, when it dipped back into the end of Libra, stationing direct at 29 degrees and 56 minutes. This was, in effect, the degree and minute most active at the point when the Bush family took power again.]
Were we talking about a chart for a horse race, the mystery of who sent the flowers, or will Joey win the lottery tonight, I would say that these might not be such interesting associations. But given that we are talking about Senior, they are, basically, unbelievable: and the only reason we can believe them at all is because the astrological data does not lie. These are the actual planetary positions associated with actual historical events. This is why we use astrology rather than another mystical art form. Astrology has one foot planted in mathematics. It can be accounted for. What these connections mean is another thing; but the fact that they are there is indisputable, and as astrologers we are confronted by these symbols and have to take them into account.
And, at the least, what they mean is that this chart has very precise connections to recent history.
Okay, new house. The 8th: the nature and cause of death. The 8th by the way also rules inheritances and legacies.
I see Gemini on the cusp of that house. The cusp is Gemini 19 degrees and 25 arc minutes. Seeing Gemini as the sign, we look for Mercury as its ruler, and we find this planet down in the 2nd house -- the opposite house of its rulership. See him down there in the lower left hand side of the chart, with the little horns? He's making a close conjunction to Pluto. Pluto is the natural planetary lord of death. Mercury is the significator in this particular chart for the nature and cause of death. Mercury is a messenger. He is conjunct Pluto; is it reasonable to surmise that this death was a message? Does it count that Sagittarius is the sign of aviation and international journeys? Or that Mercury is the "winged god" and often goes flying around? Being in Sagittarius, our message, or messenger, also has an international flavor or long-distance theme of some kind.
It is within reason that any potential non-accidental malfunction of the aircraft's equipment occurred too soon, sparing the ex-president's life. Thus the incident was taken as a message.
Looking at the prospect of an equipment malfunction or pilot error, that would certainly fall under the realm of Mercury, the trickster, about to be retrograde, and somewhat weakened in Sagittarius (according to horary). The problem with this is that there are helpful aspects to Mercury; for example, it is sextile Jupiter and Neptune, and trine the Moon. Mercury should be working just fine under these circumstances. Nothing about Mercury, to me, says "error" or "malfunction." It says message.
Let's keep looking at Mercury, ever-the-interesting planet lately, since it shows up in every chart of any importance involving the government in these years of history. Our old friend Patric Walker once commented that, "It's all about the houses," meaning that these are the most important area of astrology to understand. Mercury and Pluto show up in the 2nd house. The 2nd house is about money, and so is the 8th. In true Sagittarian style, there is certainly a LOT of money changing hands these days, and it's global money, and it involves a heck of a lot of killing -- all images of Sagittarius, Pluto and the 2nd house. Money (to quote the musical Cabaret) makes the world go round. I could go on here, but I won't -- except to say this.
Jupiter, up in the 11th house (the house of public resources), rules Sagittarius and the 2nd house, where these money planets are located. The Moon's next aspect is an opposition to Jupiter, which points to Jupiter like the huge spot light on top of Eiffel's Tower. Politics is always about money. The reason people want power is to control resources. Jupiter represents those resources. The Moon, co-ruler of the 8th house [since Cancer is partly occupying that house], points to them.
Okay, new house. The 12th: the house of the secret enemy. Libra is on the cusp. Venus is the ruler of Libra. We have already discussed the astonishing position of Venus, which gives a very clandestine, on the fringes feeling. What is important to remember is that the secret enemy and the open enemy are the same entity, according to this chart, anyway. And this entity is very well connected to some of the most important developments in recent history, or we could say, well connected in general.
I have not mentioned the ever-important 1st house, the house that will signify the subject of our question, Mr. Bush the elder. Because Scorpio is rising, Mars is the primary ruler of this house; Mars is located in Scorpio in the 12th house. The 12th is a misty place, and the predawn world was shrouded in fog that day. The 12th is, additionally, the here-beyond. Mars, ever the warrior, is very happy in Scorpio. Yet this Mars placement has that floating-on-a-cloud, feet up, watching television feeling. Warrior hog heaven. The subject of this chart is, in a sense, already dead -- and Mars also signifies the actual airplane that crashed in Houston, and its crew.
Now here's the catch. Venus is about to change signs, enter Scorpio, cross the south node of the Moon, and make a long-awaited conjunction to Mars. Typically, the sign change would end our Venus story. But I don't see it that way, because something very meaningful is about to happen in Scorpio. Venus is in hot pursuit of Mars, as if it were Charlie Hawkins Day (this, by the way, is perfectly delightful news for those who practice love and not war). There are obstacles (indicated by the change of sign and the crossing of the south node, indicating a complete transformation -- including the possibility that, if there was a plot, its perpetrator has already been caught and dealt with). There is also an encounter with the distant past (the south node); and my sense is that this message was indeed received. I assure you that security measures have been increased around those parts and lots of places we're not hearing about, which is a good thing. It does not need to be stated, but I will state it anyway: assassinations in my judgment are bad. It does not matter of whom, or by whom; they spread chaos, fear and strife. If you are on a spiritual path that is all you need to know.
Mercury, our messenger and message in this chart, is also about to go retrograde, cross Pluto again, and eventually go direct, so Mercury's story is not over, either. In fact, Mercury's story has just begun.
While we are busy decoding messages here, and with Mercury the messenger standing in as "the nature and cause of death," one must not miss the fact that this crash occurred on the anniversary of the assassination of John F. Kennedy. And that the airplane that crashed took off from Dallas, the city where Kennedy was killed. We must not forget the many other Texas connections to the assassination (including the fact that Kennedy was succeeded by a Texan, that his arch-nemesis Nixon was in Dallas that fateful day, and plenty of other strange stuff). While scientists and other men of reason might say this is all a big coincidence, that's why we're students of astrology and they are scientists. Our job is to read the omens, signs and symbols, to look beyond the obvious, and to follow both reason and intuition.
PS, the 10th house cusp (government) is Leo. The Sun rules Leo. The Sun is in the 1st house, newborn in Sagittarius -- very prominent. Something big has just changed; and is in the process of changing even more. Note the late Leo mid-heaven. Things will get very interesting after the inauguration, indeed, after the Solstice, as Mercury stations direct and history develops in the exterior world a lot more rapidly.
For an interesting news read, see this link:
I feel completely powerless, as if my life force has been wiped away. I cannot even begin to understand; therefore all is lost and nothing can ever be gained. Will you please take a look at my chart and see if you can provide any insight or explanation for my longstanding, obscure, disillusioned life.
April 11,1964 at 4:24pm in Wilson County Wilson, N.C. USA (I currently reside in Mühlheim, Germany)
p.s. I find that I share many of your views on the state and welfare of our home country. Reading your articles help me to understand the dynamics of it all.
Without wading through a lot of astrology, here is the first question that comes to mind. In your letter, you present these doctors as being the presumed source of your healing. Not, for example you, or the decisions and choices you make, or the life you live. Even if you work with doctors, your healing always comes from you. What if you were to follow the principle of healing, "Seek not outside yourself"? Certainly, seeking everywhere but yourself has brought you little good, or if it has, you have not mentioned what you have learned in your whole process.
While I don't feel like I can explain the past adequately, I can tell you that you're right at the point where you can let go of it. This has, I'm going to imagine, never been a particularly easy theme for you, and if I had to explain your illness in a few words, I would say that it involves being attached or otherwise caught in the much that has happened before and, perhaps, much that has happened to your parents. The past weighs heavily in your chart.
How can I see this? In any question of health, it makes some sense to look at the 6th house first. The 6th is like control central of health issues, of healing and of healers. If we look, the information comes easily: you have the planet Saturn both ruling the 6th house, and occupying it. I say ruling because Aquarius is on the 6th cusp (see wavy lines next to the number 24. The wavy lines say Aquarius and Aquarius says Saturn, the traditional ruler of that sign) and Saturn is sitting right there in the 6th. But Saturn is in Pisces, not Aquarius.
Saturn in the 6th can certainly present obstacles to healing (he always presents the solutions as well, so no worries) and given his presence in Pisces in the 6th I'm going to propose that what you're suffering from has a spiritual or emotional basis and not a "medical" one. Pisces, to me, is what says spiritual the most loudly. Pisces also tells me your beliefs are involved.
This would give us a working hypothesis for why all these doctors have not been able to help you. They are working on the symptoms and not the cause. Doctors can be very helpful, but there are always multiple layers to healing. While doctors tend to work on the body level, the more subtle levels -- psychic, mental, emotional, spiritual, whatever you wish to call the involvement of energy, the psyche or the mind -- are usually completely ignored by Western medicine. You are very lucky if a doctor says to you, "How are you feeling today, Chase?" before diving into the lab reports.
Whether or not a doctor asks you this, it's an important question for you to ask yourself. Because what you are going through is all about feeling and the experience of life on the emotional, empathic and psychic levels.
If we look back through the houses, we see that Saturn rules another house: the 5th, because Capricorn is on the cusp of the 5th.
Now, you may be asking, "I thought Saturn ruled Capricorn and Uranus ruled Aquarius!" It is true that Uranus is widely considered to be the traditional ruler of Aquarius -- but Saturn is the modern ruler, and it's necessary to check Saturn first. And Saturn in Pisces in the 6th is saying you might be stuck on a belief in traditional medicine. And -- if we want to know more about Saturn's origins, we can look for where Capricorn is in the chart; we find it in the 4th house.
Looking into the 4th house, we find the south node of the Moon in Capricorn. I think this is the missing piece of the puzzle, frankly. The south node, the 4th house and Capricorn all have strong, meaningful references to the past. There is almost an obsession with tradition, authority and the idea that these things bring security (4th house). However, this does not always hold true.
Most people resist the idea of a psychic or emotional root for illness because it invokes the idea that they "brought it on themselves." I think this is harsh; another way to say it is that if we can find the cause of our own lives within ourselves, we'll find the solution there too. If we're not looking where the cause is, we're more likely to seek outside ourselves in ways that don't work, and are in truth depleting.
You also have Chiron in the 6th house. This is the "alternative," as is often the case with Chiron. Chiron represents all forms of healing, from surgery to homeopathy to hands-on work. It is a holistic energy, taking into account the holos -- the whole of reality. Chiron is also about awareness and transformation. These are the most available methods by which this energy heals us.
Alternative healing methods do many things differently than traditional ones. The first one is that they define wellness differently. It is not merely defined as the absence of symptoms, but rather has the presence of vitality, balance and clarity. They define illness differently, seeing it in the context of the whole system of life. And they define the healing process differently, seeking out solutions on every level of existence.
When you think of your healing process -- as shown by the 6th house -- consider that you have two methods to work with: Saturn and Chiron. One is not at the expense of the other. Chiron is like a full-spectrum version of Saturn, and at the time of your birth is moving much more slowly than was Saturn. But Chiron will open you up to other possibilities, other dimensions of yourself, and other ideas about both illness and wellness that you would be wise to consider, given that the long healing struggle about which you have written seems, in my view, to be pleading for a holistic approach.
The thing with just about any holistic approach is that while it may seem to be coming from a practitioner of some kind, you are much more intimately involved with the process. Your feelings, needs, and subtle changes count. The inner journey of the healing process is, with rare exceptions, acknowledged by healing practitioners.
Start with food and water. Move into other environmental factors. And then, perhaps, make an appointment to see a classical homeopath and get a constitutional remedy. Another possibility is to see a naturopathic physician, someone educated at National College or Bastyr University, or at an equivalent school in Germany or England. Please keep in mind that holistic healing works slower, and there are no magic solutions. But when it works, it does its job on a very deep level, and your whole life is better in the end.
It also costs a lot less, and its methods are generally non-toxic, non-invasive, and people dedicated to these arts tend to spend a lot more time with you -- not just your lab reports.
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