Full Moon in Sagittarius

Come to the light! May 24-26, 2013
The Sun, the source of our consciousness, is in Gemini. Gemini is an Air element which means it is one of the intellectual and mentally active zodiac signs. The symbol is the dual Twin since Gemini is so curious and actively engaged that it needs to be cloned so it can be two places at once. Gemini strives to discover what is possible in one’s own neighborhood and make connections in everyday surroundings. Gemini is ruled by the planet Mercury which brings clear mental capacities as well as the ability to travel between the folds of reality. The Greek name for Mercury is Hermes, the messenger of the gods between the upper, middle, and lower worlds; the Egyptian’s name is Thoth. Together they are referred to as Hermes Trismegistus, a source of wisdom on how the universe works and the author the second century Hermetica, a source text for astrology, alchemy, and magic.

The Moon is in the opposite sign of Sagittarius, and represents the longing of the Soul and stirring of the unconscious. It is in the element of Fire and connects to the source of our energy, our passion, and spirit. Represented by the symbol of an arrow, Sagittarius points outward and directs its attention to unknown and transcendent reality. It is ruled by the planet Jupiter which brings wisdom and expansion to seek new knowledge. This month the Full Moon is about finding a place of balance between the Moon’s expanded vision and the Sun’s desire to keep the focus close to home. The Moon is exact this month on Saturday May 25th at 12:25 am EDT at 4 degrees of Sagittarius. The Moon will be in the sign of Sagittarius from Friday May 24th at 5:49 pm until Sunday May 26th at 5:28 pm. There will be a lunar eclipse during this Full Moon, but it will be nearly invisible.

photo by George McGeorge

For You: This Full Moon will be especially tuned to mental clarity and a sharp mind since Mercury, Venus and Jupiter will also be in Gemini. You have spent several months exploring your Shadow and facing your personal and collective fears. This Full Moon is time to bring the knowledge of your exploration of the Shadow into the light of consciousness so that you can manifest your world taking into consideration all parts of yourself. The Sabian symbol for  this Moon is: “An old owl sits alone on the branch of a large tree.”  The owl is a symbol of wisdom and has the ability to see in the darker realms of night. It is time to take a “poised and wise approach to existence based on a clear perception of unconscious factors and their operation.” Bring together that which is below- your Shadow in the unconscious- with that which is above – your clear perception and illumination. (Sabian symbols in An Astrological Symbolism by Dane Rudhyar)

What are the Angles in the horoscope?

Dear Lilan,  Why are the angles so important? Signed, Confused

Dear Confused,  In astrology we are using a symbolic language which means that there are multiple interpretations and ways to approach the chart. There is no “truth” about the right way.

Regarding the Angles: We use symbols for all the planets in astrology. But you don’t see the symbol for Earth because the planetary positions are calculated from the position of the Earth. Earth is the rock upon which we live and take a stand. The  symbol for the Earth is a circle with a cross in center, like the 4 directions on a compass or medicine wheel. The horoscope upon which we place the position of the planets is also a circle with a cross in the center and represents the arenas of our life on Earth.

The 4 points of the cross are the angles and are very important points in the horoscope. The Ascendent (1st house) is all about ME!, which is your physical self that is visible to the world including your personality, physical characteristics, and place of personal expression and growth. Nadir (4th house, also called the I.C.) is the root of the chart and represents your physical roots, like home, family, and your emotional roots, including the Soul, safety, and nurturing (which can point toward your nurturing parent). Descendent (7th house) which is opposite the Me quality of the Ascendent and represents the We part of your life, including relationships, marriage, and close partnerships. Midheaven (10th house, also called the M.C.) is the top pinnacle of your chart and is opposite the rootedness of the Nadir. Midheaven is where you show up taking a stand in the world, is your public reputation, and can be career.

These four arenas of life — Myself, Others, Home, and Public — are the cornerstones of our life. Other experiences like money, play, heath, education, etc, all occur within the bounds of these 4 angles. You can get information about each of these angles by looking at the sign on that angle. Use this process and see if you can figure out more about these 4 important areas in you life. Start with the Ascendent.
1. Look to the sign on your Ascendent, also called your rising sign.
2. What is the planet that rules that sign? This planet is called your chart ruler. For example, if your rising sign is Aries, Mars is the ruler. So Mars is your chart ruler.
3. Find your chart ruler in your horoscope. So, in the above example, find Mars in your chart and notice the sign and house of your chart ruler. For example, Mars is in Taurus in the 4th house.
4. The sign your chart ruler is in gives additional information (beyond the rising sign) to how your personality is expressed. If Mars is in Taurus, you express your personality in a solid and dependable way. This Taurus influence would stabilize your Aries rising. If, on the other hand, your chart ruler Mars was in Gemini you would express your personality by talking and communicating. This Gemini influence would excite your Aries rising.
5. The House your chart ruler is in is where your personality shines. So, if Mars in Taurus was in the 4th house, your personality would shine in your home, where you might initiate (Aries) activities that solidify the home environment (Taurus).
6. You would also include aspects to your chart ruler, but that is more advanced, so at first just stick with sign and house.

To do this you need to know which planet rules each sign.  Remember: Planets rule the Signs –Signs rule the Houses. Rulerships are:  Aries is ruled by Mars    Taurus/Venus    Gemini/Mercury   Cancer/Moon    Leo/Sun    Virgo/Mercury    Libra/Venus    Scorpio/Pluto    Sagittarius/Jupiter    Capricorn/Saturn    Aquarius/Uranus    Pisces/Neptune

Do the process for the sign on each of your other angles. So, for the Nadir, find the sign on the Nadir (4th house), look for the planet that rules that sign, and find see what sign and house it is in (for example, if you have Capricorn on the 4th house, look for the sign and house placement of Saturn).  Capricorn on the 4th would bring a sense of responsibility to the home. If Saturn, it’s ruler was in Taurus in the 7th house of marriage, a strong and stable marriage would be important to you.

Astrology Conference on-line

Hello, I’ve decided you might be interested in some of the ideas and events that I come across. I hesitate to email them to everyone, since it can get overwhelming to receive too much email. So, I’ve decided to starting posting different events/websites/lectures/and ideas. I like knowing what is going on whether I can attend or not. And alot of programs have free introductory sessions, like this upcoming astrology conference. This is not to be taken as an endorsement, since many of these programs will be new to me as well. I’m just passing on information.

There is a three day Internet Conference  on Astrology that features some of the big names in Astrology. It is a different type of conference, but could enable you to hear some lectures at much less cost. You can go to the website and read about cost and how the process works. I noticed that you can share the cost with another person, and share the conference live feeds, and archives that will be available after the event.
Three Days of Live Video Broadcast on Friday, Saturday, and Sunday October 1, 2, and 3, 2010.

But even better, they are offering a FREE Pre-conference that will act as a demonstration of how this on-line conference will occur. This will happen on Sunday, August 8th at 9pm EDT. This is your opportunity to experience the video-conference technology used to deliver the October Conference. You can find out more and register at www.forumonastrology.com

Here is a description of the pre-conference on Chart Interpretation by Robert Corre:

The primary obstacle to effective chart interpretation is appreciating that a chart contains much too much data. Unless trained otherwise, this complex of information hinders interpretation and poses a serious problem.

Most people enter and examine a chart in a chaotic and haphazard fashion which predisposes them to becoming overwhelmed with the risk of becoming discouraged; this ends most typically in frustration and only modest satisfaction.

We discuss and illustrate a solution to this dilemma, a methodology that stresses discipline. This consists of employing a systematic approach that when used consistently leads to a satisfying and deep understanding of the chart.

Think you might be interested?

In peace, Lilan

Astrology to Chattanooga

Two other women, Jennifer and Melissa, and myself began the Astrology-Chatt Meet-up with the hopes we would find some like-minded people interested in talking about what many in the Bible belt consider devilish. It still amazes me that some people have the idea that astrology is anti-religious or anti-Christian. I think I find it so amazing since I know the history of astrology and know that the basis of it is very religious in that it is about God’s presence on earth. And that Christianity used to integrate astrology into its teachings. Thomas Aquinas, a great theologian, discusses astrology as valid in certain contexts.

Just recently my husband Bill reconnected with some old neighbors who are now doing missionary work in Africa, South America, and other countries. They go under the auspices of being language teachers (which they are not), but use that as a means to gain access to people. When he told them he was married to an Astrologer they sent him an email saying they were sorry he had drifted from the path, and then cut off contact with him!! He wrote them back to say that it was difficult to see how they could be so closed minded to other beliefs of Americans while at the same time receptive to the beliefs of people in rural countries, and he was surprised to see them act in such an exclusive manner. After about 2 weeks they responded that Bill was right, and it was un-Christian to judge people so harshly. And in prior astrology classes that I have taught, some students would say that when they told neighbors they were going to astrology, the neighbors replied they might as well go to Hell!!!  Amazing. Especially in this day of global citizenship where a compassionate heart and open mind are essential to being part of this ever changing world.

So our Astrology Chatt that we had on Saturday was a great success. In one month we’ve had 18 people join, and 9 came to the first meeting. We had people who had studied 30 years and people who pondered astrology for 30 days. Great mix. Looking forward to more.

What types of responses have you had when you mention astrology?

In peace, Lilan

Solar Eclipse

This week the Moon wanes in its light as it gets ready for a New Moon on Sunday July 11th.

A New Moon is when the Sun and the Moon are right next to each other, with the light of the Sun so bright that the lessor light of the Moon becomes invisible. This is because the New Moon will be in the astrological sign of Cancer at 19 degrees on Sunday July 11th at 3:40 pm EDT.

There is a Total Solar Eclipse also on Sunday July  11th at 3:40 pm at 19 degrees Cancer. A solar eclipse occurs when the Moon aligns exactly between the Earth and the Sun, blocking the Sun’s light (see diagram below). This solar eclipse won’t be visible in the US, or not many places at all since the path of the eclipse is right in the middle of the ocean.  For what this eclipse means symbolically to you, go to the Changing Sky.

Astrology and the Academy

As I sit outside on my deck and watch the Moon and Venus setting I ponder the AFAN exchange on questions around how to legitimize astrology, and astrology’s possible acceptance into the academic world.  I am an academic, and an astrologer, and a licensed counselor. I spent 9 years at the University of Pittsburgh, a research institution (as opposed to only teaching, therefore in the academic world, way superior) and was given full funding and fellowships. I got my Ph.D. in Religious Studies in 2004. My studies and dissertation focused on ritual and cosmology. I have given papers at numerous academic meeting, and still am involved in my professional organization, the American Academy of Religion and am giving a paper at the annual meeting this coming November. Over 6000 religious scholars attend these meetings and getting a paper accepted is considered a significant accomplishment. And I have published in academic journals and taught at various universities. As an astrologer since 1985 who was very tired of being considered sub-worthy and rather dim witted, I decided to get a Ph.D. with the goal of showing that astrologers were not dim witted and also moving forward in legitimizing astrology as a worthy profession. (Do you sense a strong Saturn here?)

When I graduated I really questioned whether I wanted to work on getting astrology to be considered legitimate by the academy. I decided, after some consideration, that it was a waste of my time and a nearly impossible task. My ideal image of the academy, that of inquiring minds who want to know, was crushed by the realities. Academics are interested in their particular discipline, and are very territorial. Astrology and alchemy are questionable in the academic community. I thought it was very prejudicial that a Christian could study Christianity, and a Jew could study Judaism, but an astrologer was considered suspect, and unable to render anything intelligible. My husband, a life long academic and former head of his department, agrees and says that there is a lot of prejudice against astrology, and that academics are arrogant anyway, and they are especially arrogant about their prejudices. (that is a quote!) I came to discover that one could study astrology as a cultural phenomena, for example astrology in India, or historical, like Mayan or Medieval astrology. But I decided it was a waste of my time and my knowledge to try to convince academics that I had something legitimate to say, when there are so many interested people in the world who are genuinely interested in what astrology offers. I decided to put my focus on moving astrology forward among those who are interested rather than trying to convince uninterested people about the value of astrology. If anyone is thinking of pursuing an advanced degree I would be glad to talk to you about possible ways to contextualize your astrological research to fit into the academy. Now there are some excellent colleges that might be considered alternative or progressive that do embrace astrology. I’m not referring to them; I’m talking about the hard core research oriented academic institutions of which I have been a part, and of which I think this forum has been referring.

As far as psychics and tarot readers are concerned:  I love the Tarot and believe it to be a fantastic means for inner knowledge and a tool for guidance. I did my Master’s thesis at Hunter College in NYC on the Tarot and its relationship to Carl Jung’s path of Individuation. I have great respect for the Tarot, and certain psychics, like Edgar Cayce, I trust as legitimate. I do not think we all need to follow the same path when it comes to gaining wisdom or finding tools that work. I choose to get as much education as possible, but that is not the path for everyone. And I have had dear friends whom I greatly respect who have found comfort in mediums.  I think the ideal is not to bash a profession, since that is what we dislike about astrology bashing, but rather to look for integrity and excellence wherever it is found.

In peace,


I’ll miss you, Orion


Last night I went out to look at the night sky, fully expecting to see Orion high in the sky, with his trusted dog Sirius. But low and behold, they were not there. I have loved watching Orion on these long winter nights, and he has become like a dependable friend. Orion is one of the easiest constellations to find, since he has that wonderful belt made of three stars, and his arms and legs are spread strong and wide, like the warrior he is. And in that belt is a nebula, that I can actually see sometimes with my astronomical binoculars (which cost only about $70!) Orion’s belt is featured in the Hubble 3D movie, which is spectacular and I highly recommend. For more information on Orion check out this article and pictures in Wikipedia.

But Orion was missing! I pondered what might have happened to him, when I noticed way low on the western horizon the three stars of his belt. And I realized, that Orion was leaving, his time in the sky over until the next winter. I felt sad that I would not see him in the summer nights. And I wondered what would take his place. So I looked up and I saw the constellation of LEO, the Lion! I smiled and felt relieved. Leo is also a very easy constellation to see, with his beautiful curved maned head. So check it out. And if you can’t find Leo on your own, download Stellarium for free at http://www.stellarium.org/ It is a great program to help you see the night sky.
So, I’ll miss you, Orion. But I’ll see you next winter, and until then, I’ll just have to get to know Leo a bit better.

Astrology and Dogs

Well, I learn something new everyday. And today it was that it appears (and I say appears, since one chart isn’t enough evidence for a definitive statement) that an astrological chart can be done for a dog. Very interesting case study brought in by a student of mine involving a show dog that lost her first litter of puppies to a strange silent killer. The idea that a dog has a birthchart brings up a whole host of questions for me. Like, does a dog have a soul?

Isabel Hickey, my first astrology teacher, said that dogs are the incarnation stage immediately prior to becoming humans. It is by being in such close connections to humans that a dog learns about what it means to be a human. I had a wonderful dog, Nietzsche, who was so smart and wonderful that I said that I was certain her next life would be human.
So, who knows. Maybe.

Venus and Mercury in the sky

I’m on my back deck watching the stars come out. And I saw such a bright light in the western sunset, that I knew it was Venus. Its like a sparkling diamond in the sky, in the west at sunset. But there was a small light next to it, and I knew it was a planet too, and thought it was Mercury. But since I wasn’t sure I opened a great free downloadable program called Stellarium (www.stellarium.org) and yes, it was Mercury. And Mars is out too, near the constellation of Gemini. Then I started to find other constellations using Stellarium. Orion is beautiful, as is Sirius, and I am very familiar with them. But I found all of Gemini the Twin (not just their heads, but also their feet!), and Taurus, the bull, with her beautiful horns. Then Auriga, and Perseus and Andromeda. They are the main characters in the new Clash of the Titans. Maybe its a sign I better go to the film!

Get this great program and find the stars yourself. Its pretty easy to do.

Amazing universe with Hubble

Last night my husband and I went to see the Imax show of Hubble 3D. It was absolutely amazing and as close to space as I’m likely to get. The 45 minute film showed the initial launching of the Hubble camera, and then the fixes that have been made to the lenses over the years. The most recent fix was in 2009 when a wide range lens was added, allowing even more amazing photos to be taken. After participating in the fascinating work of the astronauts, including training underwater on a full size replica of Hubble, we get to go for a ride through space using the awe inspiring photos sent back by this amazing camera.

Some of the images (in 3D!) were of the nebula in the Orion constellation. Orion, with his hunting dog Sirius, are two of my favorite constellations because they are so easy to identify and have such a great mythic story. The camera takes us into the center of the nebula in Orion’s belt where stars are forming. I can’t express how fantastic it is. Then we go out, out, out, to the edge of space, past billions!!! of galaxies. Wow, is all I can say.

And in all of these billions of stars, the earth stands out as our livable, protective space. I really got, in a visceral way, how huge the universe is and how our Earth is a delicate jewel in this sea of space. I wish everyone could see this movie, so we would quit destroying this planet with pollution and nuclear bombs, and instead do all we can to protect this fragile egg that so delicately surrounds us and protects us.
You can find out more about the film and see some of these awe-inpsiring photos at http://hubblesite.org/

In peace, and here’s to Earth Day!

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