Astrology, Past Lives, and Reincarnation – Part 2

M42_Orion_Nebula_from_the_Mount_Lemmon_SkyCenter_Schulman_Telescope_courtesy_Adam_BlockIn my PREVIOUS POST, I discussed some of the indicators that astrologers use to track past life karma into a person’s present day birth chart. Some of these indicators include the Nodes of the Moon, Saturn, Eighth House and Twelfth House placements, retrograde Planets, and any Planets, Signs, or Houses that might be intercepted in a chart.

Unfortunately, in that same post, I left out yet another indicator that some astrologers favor when digging into past life information: this indicator is one of the bodies in the main Asteroid belt, that – like its fellow comrades there – makes its circuit around the Sun within the region lying between the orbits of Mars and Jupiter. This particular Asteroid bears the number 3811, and the name…Karma.

The idea here is that you can pick up some clues about your past life experiences by analyzing the Sign and House placements of Asteroid Karma in your chart, along with any fairly tight Aspects it might make with any of your other natal Planets.

astro_2gw_224_napoleon_i_bonaparte_adb.48282.42069Full disclosure: I’ve never used the Asteroid called Karma for these purposes, but I thought it might be fun to give it a public workout. For my test subject, I settled upon Napoleon Bonaparte, figuring that most readers would be at least somewhat familiar with him (the Wikpedia bio on him states, “More plays and films have been produced about Napoleon than any other figure in history except Jesus,” which bodes pretty well for the mightiness of his name recognition factor here…).

So as you can see from the accompanying chart, the Asteroid called Karma was moving through the Sign of Libra when Napoleon was born, and it occupies his Eleventh House.

I haven’t found any sort of widely accepted “Ye Olde Gospel” when it comes to interpreting 3811 Karma in a chart, so I’m kind of winging it a bit here. Most of my own work in this area has focused on the Nodes of the Moon, and the Nodes are very user-friendly and symmetrical in that one of them (the South Node) details past life experiences and karma, while the other (the North Node) points the way ahead, toward karmic processing, cleansing, and release. Unfortunately, there’s only one 3811 Karma, so I’m thinking that maybe it has to do double-duty if we use it…? At the very least, I’m allowing for that possibility here…

First, let’s see what happens if we look at this Asteroid as an indicator of Napoleon’s past life experiences and lingering karma in the life we know him for.

As mentioned, 3811 Karma is in Libra in Napoleon’s H11. This could mean he came into his well-known life from a previous one that had been marked by endless stretches of Libran peace. Maybe he built up a lifetime’s accumulation of an itchy, fidgety need for conflict and competition, but found none…and so became a military archetype in his subsequent incarnation to make up for all that.

The Wheel of Existence turns and turns…

Maybe he was also boxed into life as just another cog in some great, group-think machine that allowed for no individual expression. This is, after all, one of the less palatable but definite possibilities when the tribe-centric Eleventh House is emphasized. This might prompt someone to reincarnate with a highly intensified need to be noticed for their own individual traits and accomplishments.

Napoleon’s 3811 Karma is also square his natal Venus, which lies in Gemini in his Eighth House. What does that all mean in plain English…? It could be that his tribal membership resulted in him being denied those relationships he had most desired, forcing him to try to subsist on an unfulfilling diet of interpersonal contacts that felt like the barest of nibbles to him in that prior lifetime, yielding almost zero “nutrition” for his former self. Being denied everyone you ever craved might conceivably lead you to feel in a subsequent life that conquering everyone around you would grant you access to all the relationships you could ever want and more. And given the H8 influence, you might be more than willing to add some death and darkness to the mix if it could satisfy your hungers.

So far, we can definitely make a case for some or all of the above analysis fitting what we know of Napoleon as he lived his famous life here on Earth from 1769 to 1821.

But then what about the other half of the karmic equation? What if we look at 3811 Karma as a guidepost pointing toward karmic healing, or as a warning of what might materialize if its lessons aren’t heeded?

If we treat 3811 now as more of a North Node than a South Node kind of thing, the advice might be to seek healthier versions of that tribal belonging. That is, instead of being swallowed up, homogenized, and lost within a collective, it could be that Napoleon’s karmic mission was to find a worthy tribe to belong to, and to do it in a Libran context of balance and tranquility.

And it could be that he failed in that mission…and one of the possible pitfalls of the H11 signature is that of landing in a place of alienation, outlaw or criminal standing, or even…exile. And we all know the circumstances of Napoleon’s last days before he breathed his last.

Obviously, there’s some great utility in choosing a well-known person to serve as an example in chart analysis – everyone knows who we’re talking about, and they can therefore follow along! But there’s also the danger of trying to retrofit the details of the chart and the interpretations of those details so that they’ll line up well with the facts of that person’s life. What I’m driving at is: I may have landed on some possibilities in this rundown for Napoleon that I wouldn’t have arrived at had I not known whose chart I was reading. So take all of the above with a few jumbo-sized grains of salt!

But if 3811 Karma interests you as a possible indicator of past life karma, then it may be worth your time and energy to explore it a bit. You can use my own work above as a template, or you can venture off on your own analytical course and see what happens. I’m not ready to bump the Nodes in favor of this particular symbol when looking into past life signatures in charts, but I may continue to keep it in the mix to see if it consistently yields results that feel on point. After all, it’s probably not named “Karma” for nothing!

Astrology Forecast: Week of July 3 – 9, 2017

Take a gander at a few highlights drawn from the overall menu of Astro-events that will be coming our way this week… Mercury remains a busy little messenger-Planet, Chiron contacts offer opportunities for healing, and late in the week, we have both a Full Moon in Capricorn and a slightly intimidating Sun/Pluto opposition on the agenda.

Also, I reference a 50,000-word novel that manages to never make use of the letter “e”…

Tune in here, and prep for the week ahead:

What Does Chiron Retrograde Mean?

Chiron, the Wounded Healer
Chiron, the Wounded Healer

Our society as a whole seems to have learned just enough about Astrology at this point to fear retrograde periods…which might actually be worse than not being aware of them at all.

It’s not super-helpful to think of retrograde periods as being necessarily “bad.” Yes, depending on the specifics of a given retrograde interval, and also depending on the specifics of your own unique chart, then it could sometimes seem that things do go off the rails for you during retrograde times. Then again, if you were to keep a journal in dedicated fashion, you’d probably also find that plenty of things tend to go off the rails in your life even when no Planets at all are moving in retrograde fashion…

More helpful than adopting a viewpoint of “retrogrades = all bad, all the time,” it’s wise to always consider first which Planet it is that’s going retrograde…and then look at your own chart to see if you have any features in it that might be on the receiving end of that Planet’s shifting energies when the retrograde event happens.

But what does that mean in plain-speak, without all the Astro-jargon…?

Basically, the first part (“Which Planet is going retrograde?”) is saying that Mercury going retrograde, for example, won’t cause the same effects or ping the same themes that, say, Venus going retrograde will cause and ping. And the same holds true for Mars, and Jupiter, and Saturn, and on through the entire cast of planetary characters. Each Planet has its own unique set of functions, so you need to focus on which Planet is doing the retro-work in question.

And then the second part – the bit about looking at your own chart – means that a given retrograde event won’t generally affect any two people in quite the same way. Think of the Planet going retrograde as a transmitter, beaming out a signal. Now think of yourself and everyone else in the world as being receivers in the shapes of humans. Each of us is different, and we’ll each receive that Planet’s transmissions in slightly different ways. Some people will be reading the broadcast so loud and clear that it will hurt, while others will have to strain to hear it at all.

So what happens when the Planet going retrograde is that interesting Planetoid, Chiron? This is a pretty good question to be asking right about now, as Chiron is set to station retrograde this coming Saturday (July 1, 2017)…

We need to start off by focusing on what makes Chiron a unique force… Chiron the Planetoid is named for a figure from out of classical mythology who was known as “the Wounded Healer.” Chiron was an immortal centaur (= half-humanoid/half-horse) who was scratched with an arrow that happened to have been coated with the blood of the Hydra, one of the most fearsome monsters ever to slither across the ancient Greek landscape. Being an immortal, Chiron couldn’t die, but the Hydra’s blood was so toxic, that he couldn’t metabolize it out of his system, either. He couldn’t heal from the wound. Chiron was therefore trapped in this horrible state of perpetual agony.

Rod of Asclepius
This is the Rod of Asclepius, a symbol associated with healing in our society. Asclepius was one of Chiron’s students – he became the greatest mortal healer of his day, in part due to the wise teachings of Chiron…

When his own already impressive medical knowledge failed to offer up a cure, Chiron traveled the world, looking into more and more exotic possible remedies. Nothing helped, but he did at least pick up so much new healing knowledge and skill that he became one of the greatest healers of all time.

Perpetually wounded + medical wizard = “The Wounded Healer”

In our birth charts, then, Chiron points out an area where we bear some sort of deep-rooted “soul-wound,” some trauma or condition that causes us ongoing pain in our lives until we can hopefully learn to heal it. This can be an actual physical condition, or something less tangible (a spiritual, emotional, or mental “wound”). The good news is that our experiences with our own Chironic wounds can allow us to become great healers of the same kind of wounds in others.

All of which is the backstory… Let’s jump now to this Saturday, when Chiron up in the sky will suddenly look to us here on Earth as if it will be stopping in its tracks, and then moving backwards in the sky. This is just an optical illusion caused by the realities of us observing Chiron from a different body in space that’s moving at a very different speed than Chiron is…but in Astrology, this kind of event carries an important meaning.

The gist of it is that whereas Planetary energies are generally beaming themselves all around us in the external world, when a Planet goes retrograde, its energies will then seem to manifest more within our inner worlds. This Chiron retrograde period will therefore be a five-month window of opportunity during which we can possibly make great strides in recognizing and even healing our own deepest soul-wounds.

The Healing Touch
“The Healing Touch” by Tim Holmes – Chiron retrograde periods are terrific times for manifesting some real healing in our lives…

Your best bet will be – as always! – to start by analyzing the Chiron situation in your own birth chart. What Sign and what House does your natal Chiron reside in? The Sign will give you some clues about the nature of your intrinsic wounds, while the House will flag some area of your life in which those wounds will most often and most intensely be felt.

Next, examine any Aspects that connect your natal Chiron to any other Planets in your chart. Squares and oppositions will be especially useful in understanding more about the characteristics of your wounds, and grasping what might cause you to keep aggravating them all over again. Meanwhile, the more harmonious trines and sextiles will be more likely to suggest ways in which you might soothe and even heal those wounds.

After you’ve put in some time analyzing your own natal Chiron, take a look at where the actual Chiron Planetoid is in the sky right now – the very final stretch of Pisces – and see if you have any important Planets or Points in that same area in your own birth chart. If so, you may be especially inclined to feel the Chironic energy-waves during this five-month period. You might also want to examine the corresponding sections within the other Mutable Signs (Gemini, Virgo, and Sagittarius) in your chart, and the same thing will hold true: if you have any important placements in the last few degrees of any of those Signs, this retrograde period may be an eventful one for you.

Chiron will remain in this retrograde state until December 5th, when it stations direct (“goes back to normal”), so you have five months during which you can hopefully tune in and really gain insight with respect to your deepest, most longstanding sources of spiritual pain. Chironic healing is a tremendous gift when it comes, so it might be terrific policy to encourage it during this retrograde interval.

Gentle and versatile healing and other holistic practices will be especially helpful at this time: Reiki, meditation, and yoga are a few examples of some modalities you might consider. You can also make use of any techniques that can be keyed more precisely into your own specific Chironic situation.

Try viewing this period not as a time for wallowing in self-pity about your wounds, but as a positive opportunity to bring about some deep and profound healing…

What Does A New Moon In Cancer Mean…?

f1mfileITbrCm-u1385349966_chmom.36733Tonight at what will be 10:31pm in the Eastern Time Zone, where I live, we’ll be experiencing a New Moon. These events happen once per month, and by definition, a New Moon occurs when it appears from our vantage point here on Earth that the Sun and the Moon are occupying the exact same spot in the sky.

This time around, that “exact same spot” will be in the patch of sky that we refer to as the Zodiac Sign of Cancer.

So what might that mean for you…? As always, I urge you to plot this event against your own birth chart to see if it might have any elevated likelihood of manifesting in your life in some definite and undeniable way. Check to see if you have any Planets or any important Points (such as your Ascendant, either of the Lunar Nodes, etc.) in the first few degrees of Cancer, or in the first few degrees of any of the other Cardinal Signs (these are Aries, Libra, and Capricorn).

Also take a look at which House this New Moon will be occurring in for you. As an example, it will all be going down for me in my Eighth House, which can be a pretty dark but sometimes magical place. Your chart may be receiving all this Moon-energy in a very different place, though, and the specifics will affect how this event might end up treating you.

But say you have no access to your chart, what might you expect to come of all this, just in general terms…?

We’re actually asking a couple of related but different questions right there:

1) What does a New Moon mean overall?

New Moons often indicate the beginnings of new cycles. They represent excellent opportunities for starting new adventures, and also for releasing things that have been holding us back. You can advance your own cause at this time by focusing on things you’d like to welcome into your life that hadn’t been there before, while showing unproductive people and things to the nearest exit.

2) What’s a New Moon all about when it’s specifically working through the filter of Cancer?

The Moon loves to work in Cancer territory. This is like the Moon’s home turf: it knows this region, it gets its work done well here, and it feels most like its purest self while in Cancer. The themes of the Crab will likely make themselves felt more strongly for all of us during this event.

This can translate as all of us experiencing our feelings more deeply than usual. This may be good news for those detached types who tend to lead more with their brains than with their hearts, as this can be a chance to harvest more clues than usual as to what’s happening on the emotional plane for those around them. On the flip-side, it can also mean increased emotional vulnerability, too much sensitivity, and a strong urge to withdraw as a means of self-defense.

Greater quantities of Cancer-energy in the mix can also lead to a big boost in our intuitive capacity. Listen to your instincts at this time, and try not to talk yourself out of taking them seriously.

IMG_6636Cancer can also be very fond of nesting, so if those impulses pop up for you now, it may not be a horrible idea to wring some enjoyment out of holing up at home, either alone or with loved ones.

Finally, Cancer is the Sign most associated with the archetype of the Mother. We may all be more likely to be a bit nurturing in our approach toward the world for the next little while, especially as Mars and Mercury are also swimming through the same Cancerian waters as the Sun and the Moon. If you can do it without going overboard, then beaming a bit of motherly-style energy out into the world (and toward yourself) may be rewarded around this particular juncture.

So if you can just go ahead and feel the feels, without taking it all too far, then this could be a very sweet and gratifying weekend. Happy New Moon, everyone!