Prospects for the Last Quarter Century
Without going into a detailed interpretation
of this twentieth-century chart, it should be clear to any student of astrology that here we have a quite remarkable instance of dualism and potential conflict, or at least of a strenuous oscillation between the two polarities of the mind — the analytical and empirical concrete mind of Gemini and the broader philosophical, abstract and social-legal mind represented by-Sagittarius. This is particularly stressed in the December 2, 1899, New Moon configuration, and that New, Moon was also a solar eclipse — thus a very focal opposition of the Moon and the Sun.
It is intriguing, however, that it is the most distant and galactically oriented planets, Neptune and Pluto, that are in the sign of the concrete and empirical mind, while Jupiter and Saturn (which deal with well-defined and limited types of social organization — the "law and order" complex) are in Sagittarius. The roles seem
reversed but in this reversal lies a key. To Western man, what is presented as celestial "information" (or directives for action) is the need to meet concrete issues with a broad, transcendent and transforming mental understanding, yet at the same time to balance this historical drive for transformation with a realization of the need to establish effective and practical transitory organizations at every step of the process. This means the need to integrate revolution and reorganization. But reorganization here does not
refer to the old-fashioned law-and-order and good-old-religion syndrome, because at the very center of the arc separating Jupiter from Saturn in Sagittarius in the twentieth-century chart, we see a broad conjunction of Uranus and Mercury, the latter conjunct the Moons North Nodes — a symbol of positive and spiritually blessed activity.
Our century is a period of fundamental conflict between opposite forces and ideologies. It has witnessed two world wars and a number of smaller wars; it has seen the cold war changing in intensity. The great French psychologist, scientist and philosopher, Gustave le Bon (author of The Psychology of Crowds
, and a prophetic book, The Evolution of Matter
) wrote in 1915 that the twentieth century would become a century of "religious wars." He was laughed at then, but Communism in its Leninist form and in the days of the Bolshevik revolution was a religious movement — even if it preached atheism and Marx's materialistic concept of history and class struggle. The anticommunist fervor in the United States during the days following the two world wars was as fanatic as any religious movement or crusade has ever been. The conflict between the Arabs and Israel is an irrational struggle between two emotional points of view. The struggle between the law-and-order concept of the American police and the early hippies was totally irrational — as was Prohibition (which perverted America's moral sense) and, in a senseless repetitive act, the violence against marijuana users — unfortunate as both
the habitual use of alcohol and pot evidently are. This is most unfortunate, yet symptomatic of deeper ills that society refuses to face.
The problem posed by a Seesaw pattern in a natal chart is always a problem of reconciliation and harmonization of opposites. It is the age-old problem of all philosophies that accept reality in its totality; it is also at the root of all valid psychotherapy, and of astrology when applied to human beings or social organisms. Never perhaps has the problem been posed as sharply and relentlessly as by the geocentric state of the solar system at the start of the twentieth century.(3
) What may make the situation more complex is that as the century began, the motions of both Neptune and Pluto were retrograde, while all the other planets were direct. It could mean that what the two remote and galaxy-oriented planets represent has some difficulty in externalizing itself; or to put it differently, that their operation is more inwardly directed than outwardly effective. Moreover, they are close to the Moon's South Node, which in some instances can represent a disintegrative process at work. Perhaps we have here a prophetic announcement of the dangerous approach to mystical or occult experiences characterizing the use of psychedelic drugs. The universalistic vision may be too vast and its effects too confusing to the unprepared mind that has no relevant way of formulating what has invaded the consciousness. The opposition of Saturn an Neptune symbolizes a sharp contrast between the ego and the seemingly formless and timeless realm of the unitive mystical experience. The conjunction of Mercury and Uranus does not help the establishment of a steady mind upheld by traditional forms of expression.
On the other hand, the planetary group in Sagittarius, Capricorn and Aquarius — all winter signs — operates within the concretely and effectively expansive sextile of Jupiter and Venus and its midpoint (or "center of gravity") is quite close to the Capricornian Moon. This may represent the vast increase in comfort and leisure for the common man in America and in Western Europe, but it can also suggest a tendency to self-indulgence in everyday affairs.
A heliocentric chart for January 1, 1900, does not reveal as strong a dualistic pattern, because Venus is then in Pisces and Mercury in Aquarius, but Saturn opposes Neptune and Uranus, Pluto, and the overall pattern is still a Seesaw type. It is the geocentrically biased intellect of Mercury which during this century has to face the opposition of the cosmic Plutonian mind: two fundamentally opposed types of mental processes. Return
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