Friday 28 October 2022

Planet-Sign Affinity According to Temperament and Essential Dignity

Lately, I have been considering some models of planetary temperament and affinity between a planet’s innate temperament to sign placement, according to element.

Whenever we're talking about 'planets in signs', essential dignity must be considered. Essential dignity is a system wherein we take in account a planet's placement in a certain sign, or region within a sign. This is done in order to determine how advantageous, or disadvantageous, the position is for that planet. In this short article, only the three primary forms of essential dignities will be explored (domicile, exaltation and triplicity) as they stretch all the way through a sign, from beginning to end.

The gist of the article is a table with all the possible placements of 'planet to sign interaction'. The table was created in order to check which combinations are more and which are less beneficial for the individual planets, when we take in account both temperament and essential dignity considerations. 

*See the table below, and click on it for an enlarged version*

For the purposes of this article I’ve used the most popular and widespread scheme of planetary temperament, as shown here:

Mars & Sun – Hot + Dry
Moon & Venus – Cold +Wet
Mercury & Saturn – Cold + Dry
Jupiter – Hot + Wet

Fire - Hot + Dry
Water - Cold + Wet
Earth - Cold + Dry
Air - Hot + Wet

Some Examples:
Mars is a hot and dry planet, so whenever Mars is in a fire sign there’s affinity between Mars’ temperament and him being in Aries/Leo/Sag. Thus, Mars is ‘boosted’ and can act more naturally and organically, you can say. I consider it as a form of accidental dignity.
The contrary is also true. Since Mars is hot and dry and water signs are cold and wet, Mars would feel hampered in Cancer/Scorpio/Pisces. I would consider it as a form of accidental debility.
This model gets more interesting when you combine it with essential dignity, and especially domicile, exaltation and triplicity rulerships (the ones which go through the entire sign). All manner of interaction ensues, in such a way.
For example, Mars in Scorpio is both in domicile and in triplicity dignities, but mars would be accidentally weak according to the temperament condition. So you get a mixed bag of sorts.

With other planets, like Mercury for example, you get a strong boost via both essential dignity and temperament. Say Mercury in Virgo (Mercury being cold and dry, in a cold and dry sign, and in domicile plus exaltation).
Or strong debility according to both conditions, like in the case of Jupiter in Capricorn (Jupiter being hot and wet, in a cold and dry sign, plus the fall condition in Capricorn).

* Click on the Table for an enlarged view*

Note that 'temperament offset' refers to cases in which the planet is strong in a sign, by essential dignity, but the temperament condition detracts from that strength. On the other hand the 'temperament boost' condition refers to cases in which the planet is weak in a sign, by essential dignity, but the temperament condition somewhat ameliorates that ordeal.

One interesting conclusion which is derived from the table is in the middle columns of “average signs”, that is, cases in which we have a combo of essential dignity and temperament which go in different directions. Or maybe the signs in which a planet is ‘doubly harmed’, both by essential debility and temperament incompatibility. That is, in the left columns of “bad for planet”.

Another interesting conclusion is the disparity which emerges concerning apparent lack of compatibility between the cold and dry planets (Mercury and Saturn) to the signs of their triplicity (Air, which is hot and wet).
That is, the fact that Mercury and Saturn both suffer (temperament wise) in the air element, but in the triplicity model they excel in air. Also in terms of the domicile and exaltation placements of Saturn and Mercury, there's a disparity along the same lines.
This is certainly 'food for thought'. A possible solution is that despite the emphasis we have in the air element on logic, thinking, rationality and wit, we have a marked drawback as well. The fact that those cold and dry planets are thrown into an arena, in which they have to be social, cordial, fun, upbeat and other none cold and dry qualities of expression.
This may account for some of the disparities in terms of Saturn affiliated Aquarius and Libra, and Mercury affiliated Gemini, being both *sociable* but simultaneously *rules-centered, and sticklers for doing things properly*.


Concerning the topic of Sect, I've received some suggestions to incorporate it into the model. That seems impossible to me as the Sect condition would 'stack' on top of the other conditions. Let's examine Mars in Scorpio in a night chart vs. Mars in Scorpio in a day chart. That same Mars in a night chart would be the stronger mars, as it's in sect, but that wouldn't change the fact Mars in Scorpio is strong by essential dignity (domicile and triplicity) but weak according to the condition of temperament, in both cases. Sect is another important factor, no doubt, but it just 'stacks' on top of the other conditions.

Another point which needs addressing is the fact that in the triplicity model of essential dignity, Saturn and Mars are associated with Fire and Water respectively, due to a balancing factor. That Saturn would be too dry and restrictive in Earth and Mars would be too hot and volatile in Fire. Probably, this would often be the case in natal charts, where we'd like to balance our Saturn or our Mars. Despite those facts, not all charts are natal charts, and we may also consider horary, electional, mundane and other branches of astrology. Implications within each of these may be slightly different, although triplicity scoring remains the same.
Example: if in horary two people ask about a winning horse, and the horse is signified by Mars in Sagittarius in one chart and Mars in Pisces in the other. Here the temperament model may do us more good than the triplicity model. The hot and dry horse being more of a 'winning material' than the 'cold and wet' horse, not regarding the triplicity advantage of Mars in Pisces.


(*) I use the Hellenistic model of triplicity scoring; +3 to all three planets.
(*) Mercury's intrinsic temperament is somewhat disputed, though authors such as Al-Biruni, Lilly and Culpeper consider it to be cold and dry.  
(*) A 'thank you' is owed to Charles Obert, who was first to make me aware of these interesting interactions, through his book Using Dignity in Astrology.
(*) Also, I want to express my gratitude to members of the Traditional Astrologers FB group, which helped me hone my ideas on this tricky topic. Here's the thread.


Tuesday 1 March 2022

Russian Invasion of Ukraine - An Astrological Perspective (November 2022 Update)

In the early morning hours of the 24th of February 2022, Vladimir Putin has ordered an
invasion of Ukraine. This short article is aimed at dissecting the astrology behind this major geopolitical event. The main focus is on the event chart of the Russian invasion, set for 5:00 AM, Kiev time.

It has been jokingly commented online, at the beginning of the war, that “the Kremlin has damn good astrologers”. The invasion chart seemed to act like a decent election which favors the Russian side. In the invasion chart, shown below, we can see that Russia is represented by the rising sign, as it has initiated the war. Additionally, the 10th house is the house of victory for Russia. The opposite is also true as the DSC represents Ukraine, and the 4th house is the house of Ukraine’s victory. Some astrologers also associate the Sun with the favorite (Russia) and the Moon with the underdog (Ukraine). Moreover, we’ll trace the aspects the main significators make in order to try and understand the flow of events.

In the chart below we can see how Saturn, which is the ascendant ruler, is essentially and accidentally dignified. Saturn is in domicile, triplicity, in an angular house and oriental. This shows that Russia is in a position of strength, both in terms of its forces and in terms of taking advantage of circumstances. A small point of consideration is that Saturn is making a partile contra-antiscia aspect to Uranus, this may show that the overtaking of Ukraine won’t go as smoothly, and surprises are in store for Putin. If we also consider the Sun as the co-significator of the Russians, its conjunction to Jupiter with reception is probably an auspicious sign. Jupiter rules the 2nd house of revenue but also the 12th house of hidden enemies.   

Simultaneously, we see that the ruler of the 7th house is the Moon, which represents Ukraine. It is strong accidentally as it’s in a good house and in sect but weak essentially as it is peregrine. Additionally, the Moon is the most elevated planet which also rises first in the chart, which gives it initiative. It’s also conjunct the fixed star Antares, which symbolizes wars, honors, obstinance, ruin and endings (a mixed bag of sorts). Also, we can see that the Moon is in an antiscia aspect to Mars, which represents conflict and increases the viral power of Ukraine. Moreover, the Moon is decreasing in light, which may be a sign of slowly wearing out. It's interesting to note that if we would have used whole sign houses, then the Moon would have been cadent and weak, but we're using Regiomontanus. Concerning the nodes, we may point out the fact that the lucky north node is in the 4th house of Kiev’s victory. However, we must also allude to the fact that it’s tightly conjunct Algol, which is described by one source as “piles of corpses”, so in a way it’s a blessing with a course. A very costly victory maybe, lots of deaths and destruction. 

Examining the turned chart, from Ukraine’s perspective, it’s interesting to note that Ukraine’s 2nd and 11th houses are ruled by the same planet. This of course, shows that Ukraine is being supplied by many countries which are sympathetic to its cause. 

If we would calculate lots, which may be connected to times of war, a few extra details would be revealed. The part of victory is at 26 degrees of Leo, and despite it being located in the turned 1st house, its ruler is the Sun which may be tied to Russia. The part of Success is at 21 degrees of Aquarius, conjuncting the main significator of Russia, and this may hint at Russia's chance of victory (or partial victory). Lastly, the part of glory is at 13 Cancer near the DSC, which may show that the Ukrainians will valiantly defend their country, despite the overwhelming odds. In summary, the parts show a hodgepodge of testimonies. Seems rather equal. 

The overall picture which emerges is probably a slight advantage in favor of the Russian side. There are some major indications which show that Putin's efforts will experience major stumbling blocks.
Overall though, the chart shows that the Russian side still holds some key advantages. Despite suffering major setbacks, it's probable that Putin will achieve at least some of his goals. Maybe the takeover of Donetsk and Luhansk provinces in the Eastern parts of Ukraine, but not before much blood will be shed and mass destruction will ensue.

In term of the unfolding events, the motion of the Moon is our guide here, since the Moon is the general indicator of timing. The Moon’s most recent aspect was a square to the Sun, and if we take Putin as the Sun figure in this course of events then his fiery and vindictive speech just before the invasion was a good fit.

The next Moon aspect is a sextile aspect to Mercury, in two or three time-units (probably months). This shows that the Ukrainian side was still trying, in the first months of the war, to reach a diplomatic solution through talks which were ongoing in Belarus, and through Turkey.

The next Moon aspect is a square aspect to Jupiter, which would be completed in five time-units (again, probably months). This leads us to July 2022. Since Jupiter is the ruler of the 12th house in the chart, this may show that casualties and destruction would increase in a logarithmic scale for both parties till this point in time, with the summer being especially unfortunate.

Lastly, the Moon would aspect the significator of the Russian side, Saturn, by a friendly aspect of a sextile. This would happen in about ten or eleven time-units, and this is important as it shows that Ukraine will probably sign a ceasefire agreement or some other treaty with Russia in about ten or eleven months. That would happen, sometime during the beginning of 2023, around January or February. 

Let's hope this is indeed the case, for the only other possible way to judge the invasion chart is for the time units which separate the Moon and Saturn are years instead of months. Judging the chart in such a manner produces the unsavory result that a decade or 11 years would pass until this conflict would be resolved.  

All of the above becomes more conspicuous when we examine the national charts of Ukraine and Russia at this moment. By transit both experience their Saturn return, and this makes perfect sense as the post Soviet world is redefining itself, albeit sadly through the aggressive actions of the Russian president. As it is widely recognized, Putin considers the fall of the Soviet Union as the biggest geopolitical disaster of the 20th century. Thus, his view and aim is 'integrating rogue post-soviet republics, such as Belarus, Kazakhstan and Ukraine, into the Russian sphere of influence'. As in both Ukraine's and Russia's charts Saturn is positioned in Aquarius, we would probably have to wait till it would ingress into Pisces for the full scale of current events to become clearer. This will happen at the beginning of March 2023. This may also mean that a more complete ending of hostilities will only happen around the first to second quarters of 2023.

In the meantime, we have to note that in the Russian national chart, the 6th house of 'service to your country' is heavily emphasized with both malefics inhabiting it. Russia at the moment feels like a conscripted and militarized society with censorship, rallies, propaganda and a very real danger presented to its servicemen. This brings us to the second point, which is an additional emphasis on its 8th house. As it's reported daily, the Russian army suffers great losses, both in terms of men and in terms of equipment. Mars' recent conjunction to Russia's natal Saturn shows this in a clear manner. Please note that Mars rules the 9th house of foreign countries (their military equipment) while Saturn rules the 6th of Russia's armed forces.

Through Ukraine's national chart we can find some additional testimony to possible outcomes which are shown by the invasion chart. The strongest evidence shown by transits is that both Mars and Saturn are creating a conjunction to Ukraine's Moon, which of course symbolizes the home and the people of the country. Saturn's rays would cease to hurt Ukraine's Moon, at the 22nd degree of Aquarius, only at the beginning of 2023. This of course is a bad sign, which may show that the war would continue in one sense or another till January or February of 2023. Even after Mars will leave Aquarius, in the middle of April 2022, he would still need some time to separate from the opposition it would make to Ukraine's Sun and later to its Mars. Thus Mars would be in the clear only around the end of April to the middle of May, which is probably the time Ukraine would see some major victories of her own (Update: the Russians retreated from Kiev).

With mars out of the picture, Saturn stationing retrograde, and Jupiter leaving Pisces and Russia's 8th house, the most concerning part of the war would probably be over for Ukraine around May 2022. Another round of hard fighting may be at hand, a bit later though. From November 2022 to January 2023, as Jupiter would retrograde back to oppose Ukraine's Mars, Saturn would again conjunct Ukraine's Moon, and Mars would station retrograde to square Ukraine's natal Mars. This would probably be the last phase of the war, as the invasion charts hints at an end before its 1-year mark. 

My hopes and wishes are with the people of Ukraine. Let us pray for a quick and less bloody solution to this awful geopolitical situation, if at all possible.

Disclaimer: mundane astrology is not my specialty, but despite this fact I’ve tried my best to employ the tools at my disposal and stay objective all the while. My methodology for the first part of this article was to borrow rules and concepts from sports and contest horary astrology, and apply them to mundane material.

This article was updated, for the second time, on the 29th of October 2022