Sun in Pisces III — Elpis

The Sun arrives at 20° Pisces 00′ at 9:38 am EST on 10 March 2022 — the decan that Austin Coppock called The Cup of Blood.

Astrology chart for March 10, 2022, at 9:38 am EST: Sun at 20° Pisces, Moon at 21° Gemini 45', Ascendant at 8° Gemini 13'.

During the Sun’s passage through these last ten degrees of Pisces, at least some ancient Alexandrians honored the deity or spirit Elpis — Hope, the spirit trapped in the bottom of Pandora’s jug, jar, box, or bag. Pandora was the bride sent by Zeus to Epithemus, the brother of the god Prometheus who had given fire to mortals — and though Prometheus wanted his brother to refuse all gifts of Zeus, Epithemus found her too beautiful to resist. Her bridal dowry was a jar, which she was warned never to open. When she was finally persuaded to open the jar, though, she released the spirits of pain and misery on the world. Only Elpis/Hope remained behind in the bottle long enough for Pandora to clap the lid back on, and so survived. Usually depicted with a cornucopia in her hands, or a bouquet of flowers, Elpis was the spirit that remained in the “unbreakable jar” — neither the spirits of death nor war pursued her or killed her, nor did misery, envy or depression overwhelm her. Even though these evils were released on mankind to trouble them, Hope/Elpis remained safe in the jar, able to help mortals and protect them from complete despair. Even in ancient times, the meaning of the story of Pandora and Elpis was the subject of intense theological and literary debate.

In this way, this decan represents the mysteries of mystery — the supernal contents of the entirely earthly chalice on the altar, and the spirit that we dare not loose from the jar for fear of ruining ourselves forever. Neither mystery can be looked at too closely or with much analysis: both must be accepted as part of a whole, or not at all.

As is fitting for the last ten days of the astrological year, this decan is ruled by Jupiter but administered by Mars — ambition couched and managed under a generous leniency; conflict authorized and ordained by higher powers.

In this age of war, it’s difficult to say whether Mars will get his way: the planet of war operates under a strange mix of dignities and disabilities in this chart: just half an hour ago, he was at the height of the day, but here and now he is past the midheaven for the day even though co-present with it in the chart; he is cadent but at the height of the sky; just a few days ago he was exalted, dignified by triplicity, bound and term — and now he is peregrine; he approaches his conjunction with Saturn, which is normally a malefic circumstance, and yet he does so in company with Venus, who makes him more ardent and yet more earnest and tender.

The dodecatemoria of Pisces III run from Scorpio, through Sagittarius and Capricorn, to Aquarius — and in this way the story of our hopes and dreams are told: Scorpio is the fixed dream or desire, the earnest longing and clear image of what we want; Sagittarius becomes the story of the hunt for the thing or person or experience we want, while Capricorn is the practical trade-off of resources and time that matches the attainment of desire; finally, Aquarius represents the new gnostic mindset that shows up in us when we have attained what we have desire. Each 2° 30′ chunk of the sky shows Jupiter ascendant over administrating Mars, as he manages first himself, then coaches Jupiter, then works side by side with Saturn — true mastery comes from mastering ones’s self, then coaching one’s superior, and then working within the rules to achieve one aim.

Planetary Positions

The Sun is in the tenth house, making this a Day Chart; and he’s on the east side of the chart, making this a considerably more active and favorable chart than we’ve seen in some time. All the planets except the Moon are on one side of the North Node / South Node axis, breaking down the “Belly of the Beast” combination somewhat. However, all the planets except the Moon are above the horizon, indicating that public events, politics, and large-scale economic trends have far more effect on current circumstances than personal economics and private considerations. You don’t have to believe the news, but you do have to act as if significant chunks of it are real, at least in the current environment. The North Node in Taurus urges you to retreat from the world in prayer for a time, while the South Node in Scorpio promises a fair bit of difficulty with corporate payment plans and expectations around both work and professional assistance.

The Moon in Gemini is coming into position on the shoulders of the constellation of Orion at about 22°-23°, which promises a show for places further west than me, in the very early morning — an anticipation of the Sun’s appearance on about 15-17 June, just a few days before the Summer Solstice. Square to the Sun, there’s a reminder here to trust your gut instincts around hunkering own while big things are happening all around you. The Moon is inconjunct to its own sign of Cancer, though, indicating that relationships with others may be more important than having cash in hand for the next ten days: call some friends, engage with neighbors, check in with distant relations, and strengthen weak but necessary ties

The Imum Coeli and Lot of Fortune are in the third house and the fourth house. The IC is in the middle decan of the third house, The Laurel Crown, indicating that some foresight around your family’s issues is likely to be appreciated and useful. However, the Lot of Fortune on the line between Virgo’s first two decans, The Tree Bearing Fruit and the Hammer and Anvil, invites you to focus on garden and tool-set at home.

Pluto in Capricorn in the eighth house amplifies and expands the range of duties and responsibilities we have. Many of these duties are likely to be connected with authority or supervisory duties, which are likely to become intense in the next ten days.

The Midheaven and Saturn are in the middle decan of Aquarius in the ninth house, called Heaven and Earth, while Venus and Mars hold the first decan, called The Mark of Exile. During the previous ten days, Mars held the upper hand as the masculine principle in many relationships, and many men in your life may have exerted a domineering or controlling force. Now the tables are turned: Venus has considerably more rein as the administrator of her present decan; and Mars is unsure, and perhaps a little lost: more of the ambitious but bumbling tourist than the warrior — more of the sort who uses a guidebook as a To Do list than as a leisurely wanderer on vacation, but doesn’t know the language and has a hard time figuring out maps. Expect a bit of lost wandering in the coming ten days.

Mercury, Jupiter, the Sun, and Neptune hold Pisces in the tenth house, activating all three decans: Mercury in The Labyrinth, Jupiter in The Net and both Sun and Pisces in The Cup of Blood. Recent endeavors to shut down access to Russian money and limit their ability to present information through third-party sources on the internet have shown up in some strange ways as Jupiter takes command of the shining palace in the middle part of Pisces: the powers of law hold considerable sway over the internet in the next ten days, and it is likely that everyone is seeing a different internet than they’re used to. Bear in mind that this is partly the result of a kind of government-imposed but indirect blockage; the US government, at least, is not supposed to censor anyone… but if you shut down certain bank accounts, then payments aren’t made to promote certain stories, or downgrade others. And the internet winds up looking different than we’re used to. Meanwhile, the Sun shines a significant amount of light onto the strange dreams and conspiracies of Neptune’s ongoing confusions around medicine, while Mercury begins double-talking their way through the narrow and winding corridors of the maze-map of what we’re doing, how, and why. DOn’t expect straight answers to any big question, but know that the two big questions are “How do we get further in?” and “How do we leave the situation entirely?” If you don’t know the answers to those questions, stop. Figure out the answers to those, and then decide how you you want to proceed.

Horoscopes by Rising Sign

Horoscopes of Decan I of any sign are free to the public; Decans II and III are available to the $3/month tier and above on Patreon.














have a Patreon account for those who want to support this column as it approaches the midpoint of its third year (I began with Leo I in 2019 ). We’re currently doing a decan walk through some Tarot, astrology, mythology, and magic. If you don’t want to become a regular patron, you can also buy me a Ko-fi in $3 increments, and any column I write after receiving a Ko-Fi donation will be open to the public.  You can also schedule an appointment with me using Accuity Scheduling, for a natal or solar return consultation.

I use iPhemeris for my charting software, and screenshot it to make charts. I want to thank the team that develops iPhemeris for the addition of Terms and Decans to their charts, appearing here for the first time! I use Hugh Tran‘s Physis typeface to craft logos for this blog, as well.

I use Christopher Warnock‘s The Mansions of the Moon as the basis of my Moon placement delineations, and Austin Coppock‘s 36 Faces as the basis of much of my planetary delineations. Neither gentleman endorses me. My own book, A Full Volume of Splendour and Starlight, is now available as PDF download from my Etsy website, as is my Almanac for 2021. I follow T.Susan Chang and the Reverend Erik Arneson for insight into Tarot. Any errors in these columns are my own.

If you’d like to schedule a consultation with me, you can find additional information on the Services and Classes page.

If you want to read some of my other astrologically-oriented poetry, “A Full Volume of Splendour and Starlight” contains these smaller collections: 

  • To the Mansions of the Moon is a collection of hymns to the angels of the Mansions 
  • For the Behenian Stars is a collection of hymns to the first/brightest sixteen stars. 
  • The Sun’s Paces are hymns to the thirty-six Hellenistic-era deities and ascended souls of the Greco-Egyptian Decans-calendar. 
  • Festae, hymns to some of the older Roman gods and spirits.
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