The Sun enters Aries III on April 9, 2022 at 5:18 pm EDT, kicking off the third of three Decans where the Sun is exalted and keeps company with Mercury in close proximity. We’ve passed the Saturn-Mars conjunction and we’re churning the sky a bit, as we see a chart in which some public action, itself a reaction to larger forces, begins to have some effect on the home front. With the exception of the reigning Moon in Cancer, we see most of the planets on one side of the Nodal Axis, warning of the troubles to come without actually delivering the “Belly of the Beast” combination that’s so afflicted us these past few months.
Austin Coppock called this decan The Burning Rose, and traditional texts assign it to Venus’s administration under Mars’s rulership. It’s a bit like the general has an efficient administrative assistant who is every bit the hardass as her boss. However, the well-networked and loving planet is inconjunct in Pisces, enjoying a bit of R&R — while the general is minding the store by a fateful sextile from Aquarius, where he’s still keeping close company with the Old Man, Saturn. Additionally, Saturn and Mars are in one another’s terms, adding a bit of dignity to each by mutual reception. Thus, Mars is far more potent than he would be normally — and more inclined to Saturn’s cold and calculating logic than normal. He may not be as fierce as normal… but he is prepared to let men die in service to the cause.
The Burning Rose belonged to Eros in the calendar of ancient Alexandria, as described in the Hellenistic fragment 36 Airs of the Zodiac. Eros, the son of Venus, was the deity of desire and pleasure. He married Psyche, or “mind”, in a secret ceremony in total darkness, and carried on in wedded bliss in total darkness — until Psyche, in curiosity, brought a candle into their bedroom to gaze upon his sleeping beauty. Light from the flame, and melted wax on his skin, brought him to full wakefulness and rage. He tormented her with tests of love and faithfulness for years before opening up to trusting her again, and enlisted his mother in these outrageous examinations as well. Desire thwarted is a nasty beast, indeed.
The Ascendant in Virgo makes this a Mercury-ruled chart, who is just a few days past their cazimi, or greater conjunction with the Sun. Just barely squeezing out of the condition of under the beams, they’re nonetheless combust, inconjunct and peregrine, a foreigner who’s stumbled into the thronging people waiting for the tyrant to pass by — to salute is to offend one’s own sensibilities; to not salute risks offending the mob.
The Nodal Axis dumps all its waste into Scorpio. we hunger to travel, to go overseas, to take up learning opportunities, and to engage in communal spirituality again, in luxury and ease. “Covid is (mostly, sorta) over, we think, maybe” say the experts, which the popular press converts to various forms of “the plague is ended!” The South Node in Scorpio’s third decan the Crow suggests that we have at least one more round of collected bodies in locales like yours before the experts will be close to right. Be cautious about throwing caution to the winds.
Pluto in Capricorn in the fifth house, accompanied by the co-present Lot of Fortune, promises a certain amount of pleasure and happiness, but guarantees nothing: the consequences of decisions are amplified; the value of the decisions are diminished.
Saturn and Mars in Aquarius’ third decan the Knot promises a great deal of insecurity and challenge. The Knot is about letting go; the sixth house is about illness and weakness and daily labors; Saturn is the cold, slow and chilling separation — and Mars is the fast, hot and feverish separation. Despite the fact that the exact conjunction ended on April 4, the two planets are in mutual reception by term: we’re still up against a lot of ugly termination notices.
Venus and Jupiter are both in Pisces, with Neptune waiting for them both — Jupiter and Neptune conjunct on April 12 at 9:37 am EDT; Venus a little later, on April 27 at 3:11 pm EDT (and Jupiter and Venus not conjuncting each other until April 30). Venus is the connector, the entrepreneur, the networker and the lover — and Jupiter is the gracious and merciful governor — and both of them are facing harsh encounters with the uncaring, the refusing, the unparticipating, and the ungovernable. In a recent reading, I pointed out that Neptune kind of behaves like US marijuana smokers from the 1930s through to the middle of the 2010s — in secret and in private, they decided en masse that the laws forbidding it didn’t apply to them. Individually, or even as sectors of the population, they were (and continue to be) punished for this refusal, but the vast majority of people experienced only minimal harm from becoming lawbreakers. There isn’t really a good word to describe this kind of massive nullification — but both Jupiter (government) and Venus (the creative economy) are going to pass over this particular reef in the next eighteen days: it remains to be seen if the tide at these moments will be high or low; if the ship will scrape on the coral lightly, or run aground.
The Sun and Mercury are both in Aries in the eighth house, where there’s a focus on responsibility and duty to others, and the management of shared resources. In the US right now, most of my readers are either preparing their taxes during the next ten days, or paying someone else to do it for them, or anxiously filing extensions due to challenges in their paperwork. It’s appropriate that both planets are in the third decan, suggesting both a fevered desire to complete certain duties, and a strong reluctance to avoid screwing up those obligations. On a larger scale, the eighth house has long been associated with death, and my wife and I remarked just a few mornings ago on how the number of COVID cases seems to be rising among people we know, just as official sources of information insist that the total number of cases is falling. Contradictions in experience — what stories (aka anecdotes) we draw to us by desire, against what broad bodies of information report in tabular form (aka data) are part and parcel of Mars and Venus working with and against one another in this decan, as well as speaking to Eros’s relationship with Psyche: caring as long as there is unknowing ignorance in darkness, but suspicious of what is revealed in the light.
Uranus in Taurus in the ninth house indicates sudden changes and revolutions in the realm of tourism and higher education, overseas travel and transit, and complications in publications and writing. This sounds a lot like turbulence in the logistics chains that cross both the country and the globe, and ongoing difficulties with getting or keeping supplies.
The Moon is in the eleventh Mansion in its own sign of Cancer, in Mansion called the Lion’s Brow, the tenth. Mutual aid and success in all matters involving friends is predicted by this placement — reach out to your community and your extended networks, and find some allies worth working with on a regular basis. The chart suggests that you may need them in the weeks to come, and lining up some long term alliances in the short-to-medium term is probably not such a bad idea.
Horoscopes by Rising Sign
I make horoscopes of Decan I available for free to all readers — those come out on about the 19th-21st of each month. Decan II is only available to Patreon subscribers at the $3 tier and higher, and come out around the first of the month. Decan III is made available to Patreon and email list subscribers, and comes out around the 10th of the month.
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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. Any errors in these columns are my own.
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If you want to read some of my other astrologically-oriented poetry, To the Mansions of the Moon is a collection of hymns to the angels of the Mansions mentioned in these columns. 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. While not astrological, Festae contains hymns to some of the older Roman gods and spirits from the calendar created by Numa Pompilius, the second ancient King of Rome.