The Sun enters Scorpio II — which Austin Coppock called the Alchemical Apparatus for Double Distillation (or the Double Distiller), and T. Susan Chang named The Golden Hour for its association with the 6 of Cups. Initiates of the Golden Dawn learned to think of this card as “The Lord of Pleasure” — and there’s some value in this season, to remembering the joys of childhood and its simpler pleasures… while also recollecting the ways in which the alleged innocence of childhood is stripped away.
It’s interesting that in Europe and “the west” more generally, that this season of the year has become associated with the dead, the spooky stuff, and the ancestors — but that to the ancient world, it was the season for acknowledging the correct way to bring up our descendants.
Children aren’t nearly so innocent as we believe them to be. That doesn’t mean that four and five year-olds are ready for adult things, mind you — but even at age three or six, kids can become crafty and sneaky when they don’t get what they want… and they can just as easily become dangerous to adults who aren’t paying attention.
To the Hellenistic era, Leto wasn’t just the mother of Artemis and Apollo, the deities of the Moon and Sun — she was also the teacher of children, who raised them in the right way. We don’t have to believe in a literal Leto to acknowledge that any society has to treat this role as an important function. The question is, what is the right way? In Inuit society and in Italy, children as young as three are taught to cut up and prepare food safely, to work with cooking fires, and to wield sharp tools safely; in America this is often considered inappropriate or even foolhardy. In Thailand and South Korea, meditation is often part of the pre-school curriculum; in the Anglosphere, most children don’t encounter meditation until at least high school. Religious training almost always starts young in any society — but what about training to understand and live with nature? Is the underlying story, one of cooperation with others or competition with others? There isn’t one right answer, but the news is often filled with wrong ones — and prayer and ceremony with Leto (or at least with the power that presides over Leto’s functions within your religious tradition) is particularly useful at this time of year.
The administrating planet of this decan is the Sun — so despite being in a peregrine position in Scorpio, the Sun is surprising strong here, rather like an administrator in a city department who isn’t particularly liked, but does their job too well to be fired and has expertises that are difficult to replace. In the Double Distiller of Scorpio II, this often takes the form of chemistry — water purification, the distillation of powerful spirits, and the refining of ores to metallic purity. Mars may try to manage the situation with tactical concerns or strategic priorities, but the Sun never quite loses sight of the reality that sooner or later, all enemies must sit at table together to agree on peace.
Finally the dodeks of Scorpio II are a reiteration on a smaller scale of the forces of Pisces, Aries, Taurus, and Gemini. This represents the ways in which one indecision has a tendency to lead naturally to the next — first the two slippery fish swim in opposite directions, mutually contradictory options both close at hand and yet unable to be resolved. Then comes the initial spark, the decision, followed by the outstanding comfort and delight one feels having made the decision and done the thing. Yet from the activity rises a new optionality, a new potential, this time an intellectual curiosity — who would I be if I had done the other? There’s an alchemical quality to these deep patterns, as what was once inexplicably joined is separated and grounded… but then becomes united and purified with other things.
We’re looking at a Day Chart with the Sun above the horizon — but with his sect-allies Saturn and Jupiter below; and with Mercury batting for the Night-team this week. Meanwhile, The Moon leads her team from below the horizon, but Venus, Mars, and Mercury are above the horizon. As a result, we’re likely to see a week in which leadership makes a number of important claims or sets goals or directions — but those goals and claims are unsupported by the normal followers and retainers. Expect to see considerable push-back against leadership’s overall messaging and strategic goals; the tactics and the logistics and support personnel are just not available. to see the big plans through.
Considering the dispositor of the chart, we should look to the Moon and to Mars. While the Moon is sovereign over herself and the others in our lives (spouses, significant others, business partners, rivals, foes), Mars rules over both the Sun and Mercury in Scorpio — and Venus, despite her approaching opposition to Neptune, collects Pluto, Saturn, Neptune, Jupiter, and Uranus under her own banner, before giving their warrants to Mars. Thus, all our friends and allies are more contentious and conflict-seeking than usual, while our foes and rivals are more likely to stand in a place of strategic value, or have a firm hand gripped on a thing we desire. This is both potent and alarming — our closest friends and allies are willing to talk smack and rouse contention between us and our competitors… but are unlikely to back us up if push comes to shove.
Additionally, a great many planets are still retrograde: while Pluto has gone direct — which, as we’ve seen, gives considerable advantage to workers in unions, although not always complete victory — Saturn, Neptune, Jupiter and Uranus remain retrograde. Saturn will ‘station direct’, or stop moving backwards, on November 4 — but this is a bit misleading; it will be November 27 before Saturn has shifted from 0° Pisces to 1°. None of the others will move very far, although Jupiter will pass from the middle decan of Taurus to the first decan — a short journey by degrees, but a world of difference in attention, shifting from immediate concerns to long-term planning. Watch for signs that everyone is delaying their military and economic actions for six months, adopting a wait and see attitude.
The Moon herself is in the Eighth Mansion The Gap, representing victorious energies, alliances, and conquests. Standing in the angle of the Descendant in a trine to the Sun and a sextile to Jupiter, she presents the notion of ethical vision and leadership in alignment with one another. Don’t be too quick this week to dismiss your opponents — they have the high ground morally, and are operating with more logistical support and tactical guidance than usual. At the same time, call in your own team; this is a week you cannot and should not go it alone. Finally, the Lunar Eclipse on October 28 has cleared the Nodal Axis completely from the Taurus-Scorpio axis for the next nine years; Taurean concerns are likely to clear up completely in the next month or so, although Libran influences may linger another two years from the October 14 eclipse: consult your own chart to see what parts of your life these forces affect.
The table of essential dignities bears out this system of relationships. Mars has assembled a strong set of experts, and perhaps holds the moral high ground — but lacks the 30,000-foot-view that shows where true victory, or even true capacity for success, comes from.
Decan I of any sign (usually covering the 21st of the month to the first of the following month) is free to all visitors; Decan II is only available to Patreon and Ko-Fi.com subscribers; and Decan III is available to Patreon, Ko-Fi, and MailChimp subscribers.
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If you want to read some of my astrologically-oriented poetry, the largest collection is called A Full Volume of Splendor and Starlight, available through my Etsy shop, and containing poems and hymns to the planets, constellations, decan deities, and Moon Mansion angels. 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.
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. I also 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 for much of my planetary delineations. Neither gentleman endorses me.