New Moon November 7th, 2018

When we are born we are ensouled and given the Spirit of Life. Astrologically we can look to the Moon as our Soul – our inner emotional and behavioural patterns – that which is not tangible or seen. The Sun can be seen as our spirit – our visible walk through life and the vitality of our bodies. But, if we are to reach the fullest potential of our walk, then we must self-actualize, grow, evolve and transform through our lives. That part of the journey is not for everyone, however, because that takes hard work and effort as well as a certain amount of pain.

Holistically we speak of mind, body, spirit – I would prefer to think in terms of mind, spirit and soul – because all three of these need to be in harmony for our growth and self-actualization. Mercury astrologically represents the mind, how we think and how we communicate.

So, we have:
The Moon – our emotional needs and behavior patterns – the Soul.
The Sun – the vitality of our physical body and the path we walk in this life – the Spirit.
Mercury – the Mind, thinking and communication.
Additionally, we have the Ascendant (rising point) through which we unconsciously approach life and view the world we live in.

At the Full Moon we can release – the Sun and the Moon are opposite and can see each other, warts and all, and, therefore, all that no longer serves us can be released from the shadows.

At the New Moon the Sun and Moon are sitting together in perfect harmony, wearing the same clothes of the sign they are in; a perfect time for soul and spirit to set their intentions and sew new seeds.

In your own birthcharts the Sun and Moon may indeed be working in harmony, but sometimes they are not; this makes the journey of realizing potentials more challenging.

So, the New Moon of November 7th is wearing Scorpio clothes – or possibly I should say Scorpio battle armour, because Scorpio is such an intense, deep, probing, private and secretive sign. But if Scorpio can find its passion then it will truly have the potential to achieve mastery. This New Moon continues the Scorpio theme of the October 24th Full Moon, when we had the Moon in Taurus and Sun in Scorpio. It’s a time of endings and beginnings.

The theme for this New Moon is still about relationship and self worth– the wounds, the pains and how they affect our relationships with others. Venus is still retrograde, but has now moved out of Scorpio and back into Libra, Venus is strong in her own sign of Libra, allowing us to continue our exploration and review of relationship and self-worth issues, but with a stronger sense of being able to see changes that need to be made together with the corresponding actions that need to be taken.

New Moons are a time of a new seed and a new beginning – even if this is only in the form of an intention rather than a physical action. There is hardly any light at the New Moon, particularly just before its actual newness – a time we call ‘the dark of the Moon’, and the ideal time to plant a new seedling. A New Moon in Scorpio suggests secrets may come to the surface, as will long-held obsessions. Whereas the Full Moon in Taurus highlighted the need to identify what we possess and own – or what we would like to possess and have been hanging on to for grim death – the coming Scorpio energy is much more likely to purge and to reveal, to dig beneath the surface for what is hidden. So, at the New Moon, all these issues may come to the fore in order to be dealt with in the form of a new seed, a new intention.

At this New Moon we are helped by the ability to tap into the knowledge of the collective – the wisdom of the ancients that we kind of know but don’t always acknowledge that we do know. This collective knowledge is part of the long held wisdom of society as a whole, but it also contains the knowledge of the universe that we unknowingly and unconsciously tap into.

There is a ‘behind the scenes’ influence from the planet Saturn to this New Moon which suggests the need to put effort and work into any changes or new intentions that you wish to make and to truly accept responsibility for your own life direction and for ongoing issues – it always takes two to tango!; and above all the need to adopt a healthy dose of realism. Power struggles may rise to the surface but there is also opportunity here – an opportunity to acknowledge them and deal with them, even if we don’t really want to.

Jupiter is sitting right at the end of Scorpio, teetering on the point of moving into his own sign of Sagittarius. Jupiter is a bit weak in Scorpio but that will change very soon and for those with planets in the signs of Gemini, Pisces, Sagittarius and Virgo, this may be an opportunity for a change of luck or an opportunity waiting to be grabbed.

So, as we arrive at the dark of the new Moon, consider what your intentions are going to be so that, as the Moon becomes new, you can make ready your crystals, your visions or whatever other manifestation method you choose to employ and meditate on the new seeds of change.

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Artificial Intelligence – the Fourth Industrial Revolution

ARTIFICIAL INTELLIGENCE – THE FOURTH INDUSTRIAL REVOLUTION

(A timeline using planetary cycles)

I wanted to write something on Artificial Intelligence because I believe we are on the brink of an AI technological revolution that will fundamentally alter the way we live, work, and relate to one another. Furthermore I believe the transformation will be unlike anything humankind has experienced before.
The First Industrial Revolution (in the 1700’s) used water and steam power to mechanize production. The Second (in the 1800’s) used electric power to create mass production. The Third (in the 1980’s) used electronics and information technology to automate production and create a digital revolution. Now a Fourth Industrial Revolution is building on this digital revolution with much more sophisticated technology bringing robotics, AI, nanotechnology, quantum computing, 3D printing, autonomous vehicles.
The speed of current breakthroughs has no historical precedent. When compared with previous industrial revolutions, the Fourth is evolving at an exponential rather than a linear pace and the changes are likely to transform entire systems of production, management, and governance.
Mobile devices with unprecedented processing power, storage capacity and access to knowledge will affect the daily lives of billions of people and this will increase exponentially as technological breakthroughs increase. I think it is interesting to show astrologically how it has developed – I have tried to keep both those with astrological knowledge as well as non-astrologers happy by showing the astrological connections without getting too bogged down in jargon. I hope I have explained it enough but if not please let me know and I will be happy to explain more.

For many of us the rapid progress of Artificial Intelligence feels like an alternative reality – the stuff of magic, Harry Potter and Hogwarts. But truly it seems likely that all the Harry Potter magic is likely to be achievable before too long and we will soon be playing Quidditch in virtual reality.

Raymond Kurzweil, in his book ‘The Singularity is Near, When Humans transcend Biology’, quotes Arthur C. Clarke’s third law – ‘any sufficiently advanced technology is indistinguishable from magic’. Now magic means different things to different belief systems and to different cultures, but we could define magic as ‘a technique for bringing about changes in the physical world through the force of one’s will’.

One definition of artificial intelligence would be intelligence demonstrated by machines, in contrast to the natural intelligence displayed by humans and other animals. But, to get to the point of having a machine capable of human intelligence, we first needed computer systems able to perform tasks such as visual perception, speech recognition, decision-making, and translation between languages.

So how does a computer mimic the human brain to create an artificial intelligence? In ‘How to Create a Brain’ Kurzweil suggests that our memories function sequentially and in order, and we access in the order remembered e.g. the alphabet. For instance, how many of us could actually recite the alphabet backwards? Kurzweil discusses the fact that, in order to get to Artificial Intelligence, the core task is to ‘understand, model and simulate the human brain in order to reverse-engineer the cerebral neocortex, which accounts for 80% of our brain.

If we were to perfectly model and simulate the human neocortex it would not be able to do very much, just as a newborn infant cannot do much, and that is because the brain works through learning and evolution – from a learning process which has been learned over thousands of lifetimes. So whilst we can simulate patterns, how do we reproduce the learned behaviours of the brain in order to progress Artificial Intelligence? Would a digital brain need a human narrative of its own fictional story so that it can pretend to be a biological human (maybe a bit like Westworld)?

Neo cortical plasticity allows the brain to learn and remember patterns in the sensory world, to refine movements and to recover function after injury. There is considerable plasticity in the brain which enables us to learn, but there is far greater plasticity in a computer. Therefore, a computer could emulate a brain but not vice versa. However, as I said, to get to the point where we are today – on the brink of an AI revolution – we had to first wait for the development of the computer itself.

For key developments through history astrologers look to the relationships between the outer planets – Uranus, Neptune and Pluto, as well as their relationship to Jupiter and Saturn – giving us a wide picture of planetary cycles. The archetypal meaning of these cycles permeates the collective unconscious of a generation and we can see a correlation between these and human development and evolution. So let’s look at this key development of computer knowledge alongside astrological archetypal/generational cycles and see how we got from the early beginnings of the computer to where we are today – the AI revolution.

The principle of the modern computer was proposed by Alan Turing in 1936 when he published his description of the Turing machine – Turing proved that if an algorithm can be written to solve a mathematical problem then a Turing machine can execute that algorithm- this formed the basis of ‘Turing complete’. At this point Saturn was in opposition to Neptune and square to Jupiter. Neptune speaks of being able to reach beyond limits and boundaries, whilst Jupiter expands the potentials and Saturn gives the ability to put structure into the ideas. Interestingly though, there were many similarities in the sky to now. We had just come out of a conflicting series of angles between Pluto and Uranus (Uranus= technology and revolution and Pluto = transformation) just as now. Uranus at this time was at the beginning of Taurus (as it is now), Pluto was in the late degrees of Cancer (exactly opposite to where it stands now) and Neptune also was at a similar degree but in the opposing sign to its current position. So many similarities between now, which appears to correlate with the start of the explosion of AI, and 1936, the beginnings of the technology required to be where we are now.

A hundred years before Turing, in the 1830’s, Charles Babbage had in fact created the field of software programming with his Analytical Engine which would have been the first mechanical device to be in principle Turing complete. 1821 was the beginning of a 170 year Uranus/Neptune cycle (the start of the next cycle in the early 1990’s brought the World Wide Web – so once again we can see a pattern). Uranus is the significator of technology whilst Neptune describes a world with no boundaries, a world that can be transcended. And this was the collective idea that Babbage bought into, albeit probably way ahead of his time because his discoveries were lost until the time of Alan Turing, who is generally regarded as the father of computers, but perhaps we have stopped short and we should actually regard him as the father of artificial intelligence. Turing was born with Uranus (technology) on his Midheaven (career point), not long after the Neptune (without limits)/Uranus (technology) opposition period in the cycle.

The famous Colossus was the world’s first electronic digital programmable computer, but it was not Turing complete. For this we had to wait for 1946 and ENIAC –Electronic Numerical Integration and computer. This was the first electronic programmable computer, similar to Colossus but faster and Turing complete. It was nicknamed the Giant Brain. At this point in time Uranus (technology and technological revolution) was trine Neptune (without boundaries) and Neptune sextile Pluto (transformation).

But it was the Manchester Small Scale Experiment which was the world’s first stored programme computer and the first working machine to contain all the elements essential to a modern electronic computer. Nicknamed ‘Baby’, the first programme ran in 1948 when Saturn (structure) conjoined Pluto (transformation), sextiled Neptune (without boundaries), and widely sextiled Uranus (technological revolution). It was the prototype for the Ferranti Mark I – the world’s first commercially available general purpose computer. Also in 1951 Turing published Computing Machinery and Intelligence, which would then become the Turing test and the concept of microprogramming was coined. We also saw the first artificial neural network and the first robotic spacecraft launched by Russia carrying two dogs. So what was in the sky then? Jupiter (expansion) opposite Neptune (no boundaries) both square to Uranus (technology).

As Uranus conjoined Jupiter, squared Neptune and Neptune sextiled Pluto in 1954 we saw the creation of CERN –the European Organisation for Nuclear Research. This was particularly important for the development of Artificial Intelligence because this would eventually lead us to the World Wide Web. Shortly after this, in 1956, the term Artificial Intelligence was first coined, followed a year later by the commercial usage of the first hard drive and the first artificial satellite, Sputnik 1.

In 1969, with Pluto conjunct Uranus, (the Pluto/Uranus cycle speaks of revolutionary transformation – just as in the 1930’s and where we are at now), the film Space Odyssey was released featuring Hal as a sentient computer – almost deja vue. Also at this point an algorithm for multi layer artificial neural networks was developed, contributing significantly to today’s success in deep learning. Plus the first ARPANET link came into use and it was this development which became the technical core of what would be the internet.

In 1980 as Saturn (structure) sextiled Uranus (technology) and squared Neptune (no boundaries), whilst Neptune sextiled Pluto (transformation), the micro computer revolution began. A price war meant that computers become affordable, just prior to the internet revolution. This was also the time of a Jupiter Saturn conjunction in the element of Air. Jupiter/Saturn cycles are indicators of socio economic cycles and, whilst they meet every 20 years or so, there is a wider cycle of 200+ years of their always meeting in the same element (fire, air, earth or water), with a rogue entry into the next element some while before the next full cycle begins. So this happened in 1980 (Air representing the mental, the ether), with the next full cycle beginning in 2020 (more on this in a future blog – but the current cycle which began in the 1850’s, in the earth element, heralded the second Industrial Revolution bringing mass production and capitalism. This rogue entry into the air element triggering the digital revolution gives us a glimpse into what we are likely to see at the full entry in 2020The Jupiter Saturn cycle of the 1700’s was in the fire element, bringing the steam power revolution of the first Industrial Revolution. 1980 was also the beginning of research into Quantum computing – computing using quantum-mechanical phenomena – which is likely to have a big impact on the progress of AI so that when we fully enter the next 200 years of Jupiter and Saturn meeting in air we will likely see the fourth Industrial Revolution in terms of intellect, intelligence and technological advancements the like of which we have not seen before.

And then we hit 1989. We had a Saturn/Uranus/Neptune conjunction with Neptune and Saturn sextile to Pluto (so this is a biggie!) and we had the milestone of the actual birth of the World Wide Web. This was also the beginning of the chatbot, the beginnings of IBM’s Watson (more on this later) and work on algorithms to a multi layer neural network. In 1993 as Neptune and Uranus were still tightly conjunct, CERN released the World Wide Web into the public domain.

Moving forward to 1996/7/98 we still had Neptune/Uranus conjunction in play and we saw the first mobile phone with internet connectivity and Deep Blue became the first chess playing programme to beat a reigning world chess champion. Deep Blue was capable of analysing the logical implications of 200 million board positions per second, whilst the chess master Kasparov reckoned he was capable of one per second. In 1997 the Tamagotchi, the first digital pet, was launched and in 1998 Google was founded. In 1999, whilst we still had a very wide Uranus Neptune conjunction, IBM started BlueGene to develop the supercomputer

Then, as Saturn squared Uranus and went on to trine Neptune, we experienced the upsurge in the founding of the private space developers – Bezos with Blue Origin in 2000, Musk with SpaceX in 2002 and, as Saturn reached a trine to Uranus, Branson founded Virgin Galactic in 2004. Facebook launched at this time too.

As Jupiter headed towards a conjunction with Pluto and squared Saturn in 2007 we saw the IBM Blue Gene/P – 2nd generation of supercomputer from which we have seen the creation of a cell by cell simulation of a portion of the human visual neocortex equivalent to a cat neocortex.

And as we arrive at the Pluto/Uranus square, (radical revolution, particularly in terms of technology – remember I spoke about this at the start of this article with Turing in 1936), which really started to come into play around 2008 and continued until 2018, we unsurprisingly really see the AI revolution massively ramping up. 2008 was the start of what we know as the InternetofThings, a network of physical devices, vehicles, home appliances, and other items embedded with technology which enables these things to connect and exchange data. Apparently the number of IoT devices increased 31% year-over-year to 8.4 billion in 2017 and it is estimated that there will be 30 billion devices by 2020. Embedded with technology, these devices can communicate and interact over the Internet, and they can be remotely monitored and controlled.

So what else have we seen since 2008?
• a mobile revolution with computers in the form of smartphones
• the first artificial cellular neocortical column of 10,000 cells was built.
• In 2009 as Saturn opposed Uranus Google built its driverless car
• Wolfram Alpha a computational knowledge engine launched
followed by the first internet link in space a year later.
• Americas first unmanned robotic spacecraft was launched
• Google Brain – deep learning artificial intelligence – mission to improve peoples lives by making machines smarter
• 2010 Instagram launches
• In 2011 SpaceX announces reusable launch system technology
• 3D printing had been around for a while but this was beginning of its usage.
• 2011 The first cognitive radio wireless regional area network standard was developed. CR can sense its environment and, without the intervention of the user, can adapt to the user’s communications needs
• 2011 SIRI, Cortana, GoogleNow, Alexa.
• 2011 Watson – a question answering system capable of answering questions – first developed for the quiz show Jeopardy. Had to be able to answer within a few seconds.
Watson had access to 200 million pages of structured and unstructured content. Watson outperformed the humans. If Watson can understand and respond to questions based on 200 million pages in three seconds
Watson gives us the thought that the advent of Turing level AI is close at hand.
• In 2012 as the Pluto Uranus square became exact, the general public were having conversations in natural spoken language with their handheld computers marking a new era.
• November 2013 – would make Watson API available to software app providers enabling them to build apps and services on the Watson platform.
• 2014 Google acquired DeepMind – co created a neural network that learns how to play games and a neural Turing Machine/neural network that may be able to access an eternal memory that mimics the short memory of the human brain.
• DeepDream – a convolutional neural network to find and enhance patterns in images via algorithmic pareidoia resemblance of imagery to LSD induced hallucinations.
• 2016 – the Pokemon craze as we enter the realms of virtual reality within a real world.

So we can really see how once we came into the Pluto/Uranus territory the technology available was really becoming much more sophisticated and growing at exponential levels.

But AI is no longer the territory of the American giants. Alibaba, a Chinese on line platform dealing mainly as an e-commerce marketplace, created their DAMO academy to work on emerging technologies, but AI appears to be their biggest focus. Alibaba has also released a cloud machine-learning platform and their technology supports several other companies’ deep-learning frameworks, e.g. Google and Amazon. Alibaba’s AI researchers are also working on generative adversarial networks or GANS, where two neural networks are pitted against one another. As one tries to generate data that seems as if it comes from a real data set, the other tries to distinguish real examples from fake ones. This allows computers to learn more efficiently from unlabelled data. Alibaba has an advantage in that the Chinese government is committed to AI, particularly with regard to the development of Smart city technology. One of Alibaba’s cloud AI tools is called City Brain, which is designed for tasks such as traffic management. So as China becomes more proficient in AI they will be an important part of this process.

Quantum computing is still in its infancy but many national governments and military agencies are funding research. Large scale quantum computers would theoretically be able to solve certain problems much more quickly than classical computers. Google IBM and some startups are competing to create the next generation of supercomputers using quantum technology and this they believe could help us to solve problems that our existing computers can’t even scratch the surface of, because they operate on completely diffierent principles to existing computers.

Salesforce has developed its myEinstein AI technology. AI is embedded within inanimate objects like cars, refrigerators, and clothing and these generate additional data by themselves millions of times a day. I was confidently told that these systems collect so much data that they know what I will buy before I even know I want it!!!!! It’s very clear how useful and how defining in terms of profits and production this information can be for companies. Businesses are going to be forced to buy into this technology or else they will be left lagging.

In 2020 we have a Jupiter Saturn Pluto line up in Capricorn which suggests to me a radical breakdown of systems and corporations as we know them. This occurs just before we begin a new Great Cycle of Jupiter/Saturn in the Air element beginning in 0 degrees of Aquarius. For me it is very significant that this begins at 0 degrees and Aquarius is such a sign of technology, unpredictability and radical difference. Then in 2025 Jupiter, Saturn, Uranus, Neptune and Pluto all change signs signifying large scale change. However, more on all of this at a later date.

The US Air Force is investing in hypersonics to catch up in the arms race with Russia and China, but is there already a hypersonic spy plane? Alongside hypersonics comes the need to be in control of space and, therefore, space weaponisation. Therefore, it is no surprise that the U.S. might use any excuse to put sanctions on China and Russia in order to slow down their technological development in this respect. A new phase in the element of Air would also be very symbolic in terms of space colonization, space technology and even space wars.

Hand in hand with hypersonics also comes nuclear fusion, which would likely mean the ability to get to Mars for instance in just three months. To reach nuclear fusion is to reach the temperature of the Sun meaning the need for oil becomes redundant and by using the power of the Sun the possibilities and distance ranges would be revolutionised. The success of the first two Industrial Revolutions in part depended upon the emergence and availability of fuels at a reasonable price. But if we don’t need oil..……now where will that take us? Artificial intelligence is all around us – we no longer have our hand on the controls. Almost every product we touch is designed in a collaboration between human and artificial intelligence and then built in automated factories. If all the AI systems decided to go on strike tomorrow our civilisation would be crippled. Fortunately our intelligent machines are not yet intelligent enough to organise such a conspiracy.

The robot or avatar of the future may be convincing in its emotional reactions and appear conscious. I think we can already signs of this. Will we merge with intelligent technology – indeed have parts of society already become a hybrid race, glued to smart phones. One recent study has demonstrated that British adults are likely to spend 24 hours a week online. Will intelligent nanobots in our bloodstream keep our biological bodies healthy in the future? Already artificial intelligence surrounds us – self driving cars, drones, virtual assistants. Driven by exponential increases in computing power this revolution has the potential to raise income levels and improve quality of life. However, it could also bring greater inequality and disrupt labour markets as jobs become redundant. The skill levels of the future will be unrecognizably different. The fourth Industrial Revolution will have an immense impact on how we will communicate (Air) for better or for worse. In 2016 Microsoft launched the Tay chatbot – an artificial intelligence application – an entertainment app for 18-24 year olds. However, it was shut down 24 hours after launch because the humans who engaged with Tay taught her to be racist and misogynic with Tay tweeting wildly inappropriate words and images. So we will have to learn how to manage the conflicts caused by this great digital revolution.

It is likely that we will not be able to increase the plasticity of the brain significantly without doing so non-biologically. As we learn to re create the neo cortex – the last bastian – then we will be able to make truly intelligent machines. And how long will it take for us to spread our intelligence in its non biological form throughout the universe? It seems that infusing the universe with our human intelligence in its non biological form is our destiny for good or for ill. Will we turn humanity into robots or will we take the opportunity to raise humanity to a different level of consciousness using the new technologies at hand for the greater good?

www.joycelambertastrology.com
email joyce@joycelambert.com

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Solar Eclipse – August 11, 2018

We are still in crazy eclipse season when energies seem to be magnified and you could be forgiven for thinking that life has become surreal and you’ve landed in the middle of the Mad Hatter’s Tea Party.   The third and last eclipse of this season, a partial solar eclipse, occurs on August 11that 10.57 a.m. set for London.  This eclipse takes place at 19 degrees of Leo, following on from the lunar eclipse of July 27that 5 degrees Aquarius and the solar eclipse of July 13that 21 degrees Cancer.

 

Calendar years have a minimum of four eclipses; this year we have five – three solar, at the New Moon, and two lunar, at the Full Moon.   The upcoming eclipse will be a partial solar eclipse, which occurs when the Moon does not completely cover the Sun’s disc and casts only its penumbra on Earth.

 

The term eclipse comes from the word ecliptic, which is the apparent path of the Sun as the earth orbits it.   At an eclipse the Earth, Moon and Sun form a straight line. With a Solar eclipse the light of the Sun is blocked as the Moon passes between the earth and the Sun, whilst during a Lunar eclipse the Moon loses its reflected light from the Sun as the Earth passes between the Sun and the Moon.

 

The ancients saw an eclipse, particularly a total eclipse, as a terrifying omen for their survival.   Today, whilst we still associate eclipses with powerful events, we link their effect with transits and with the general power of the Full and New Moons. This becomes particularly important because the power of an eclipse is not limited to just that day, or even that week – it is part of an overall and much more comprehensive process.

 

So this solar eclipse is wearing Leo clothes – the sign of someone who wants to lead, someone who may indeed be a drama queen, but who seeks attention, praise, admiration and adoration and will go about their day seeking this in whatever way they have learned to do so.  Leo is a fire sign and is signified by the Sun itself.  The Sun is the main luminary of the zodiac and as such carries the light, fire and vitality needed to illuminate the path on which we are destined to tread.

 

At the solar eclipse, however, the Sun is eclipsed as the Moon blocks the light of the Sun.    The Moon represents our inner emotions and needs, our behaviour patterns, how we need to be nurtured and as such our inner child.    So, on a personal level it is important to question at this eclipse point what it actually is that your inner child needs right now in order to gain its rewards.    It’s a time to search your soul to discover what you truly need within yourself to feel acknowledged, worthwhile and important.

 

A New Moon is always a new seed – a time to start off differently.  This New Moon sits with the asteroid Pallas Athena and Mercury, the planet of the mind and communication.   Pallas Athena is essentially a warrior goddess, but she works in terms of wisdom by stimulating one’s mental creativity to break down existing patterns and thereby enabling enlightenment as to how to bring about different life structures.   In this respect Pallas Athena and Mercury make good companions here.   However, around the time of the eclipse they are both sitting so close to the Sun that their energy is being burned and consumed.  But, for a brief time, the light of the Sun will be eclipsed by the Moon, so if you can get some sudden bursts of inspiration take them on board and use them, because if you are operating from a place where some of your learned behavior patterns no longer serve you (and lets face it most of us do) then take this point as an opportunity to start off a new seed, a new regime, a new section of the path.

 

Leo is the heart of the lion – so what does your heart desire, what does it want for you?   The Sun and Moon at this eclipse make a conflicting aspect to Jupiter, which suggests that to get to this heart’s desire we may have to take a risk and gamble – a leap of faith – so you will have to weigh up any risks involved.  However, the road that needs to be navigated would be best done through spirituality, compassion, gentleness and nurture rather than aggression, because Jupiter is making a tight positive aspect with Neptune.  Both Jupiter and Pallas Athena, however, add the ability for strategic planning, so this is a time for leaders to have the potential to be able to take a strategic overview and nurture their people in order to bring about better results for the future.

 

 

On a more ‘mundane’ level (mundane in astrology speaks of nations, politics, economies, as opposed to mundane as in boring) it is interesting to note how these three recent eclipses have resonated with several of the Royal Family’s charts.  The Queen’s chart was hit by the first eclipse and this upcoming one, Prince Phillip by the upcoming eclipse, Prince Charles by this and the most recent eclipse, whilst Kate, Duchess of Cambridge, resonates to all three.   So perhaps something to do with the Queen’s reign is rumbling in the palace corridors.

 

The UK chart also resonates to this eclipse and the first one of the three, whilst the UK Stock Exchange has been hit by all three.    There has been a rise in base rates by the Bank of England but I wonder if there will be some news which might hit share prices.  We are currently in one of the longest bull markets we have ever seen.  The “Post Crisis” bull market that began on March 9, 2009, is now more than 9.4 years old, making it the longest-lived “Great Expansion” bull except for the one that lasted from October 11, 1990, to March 24, 2000 (9.5 years),    However, I’m tempted to consider that there will be greater volatility seen in the latter quarter of this year.    The EU chart is also triggered by this upcoming eclipse – I could wishfully hope that this might be good news for the UK Brexit negotiations but I’m not holding my breath.

 

We must never forget the influence of the Sun on our everyday lives – the Sun is the centre of our universe.   And I think we have all indeed felt its heat over the last few weeks!!   The Sun’s magnetic power has increased by over 230% since the 1970’s and observers have noted physical changes in the planets, e.g. melting ice caps on Mars, an atmosphere growing around the Moon and Saturn emitting x-rays.   During 2018 we have so far had 116 days without sunspots, which suggests we are rapidly approaching Solar Minimum, (originally forecasted for 2019/20).   Solar Minimums also often coincide with market downturns – just another pointer economically.

 

Our universe is changing and perhaps eclipses serve as a reminder that we ignore this at our peril.  As well as the way that Man contributes to the downfall of the planet, archetypal energies also serve as a reminder that nothing stays the same; everything works in patterns and cycles and we should become much more aware of the signals that we are given.

 

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Lunar Eclipse

Lunar Eclipse July 27th, 2018

On Friday July 27th at 9.20p.m. in London we have a highly charged total lunar eclipse. A lunar eclipse occurs at a Full Moon when the Moon passes behind the Earth and is in the Earth’s shadow. It will appear blood red due to the Sun’s light in the Earth’s atmosphere refracting – and apparently red light travels faster than the other colours. Well, who knew that?! Additionally, the Moon will be sitting next to the red planet Mars, which will increase the illusion of redness.

Eclipse season is always crazy energy, but the ancients took great notice of the omens that eclipses gave them. Visible across Asia, Japan, Korea, South America, and parts of Africa and Southern Europe, this eclipse will be the longest eclipse so far of the century and this will increase its power. Japan is already seeing a major heatwave, far worse than ours, and we may see issues in Korea or Pakistan.

This eclipse is long in duration because the Moon is at its furthest from Earth and it takes longer to pass through the shadow of the Earth. So, because it is so far from Earth the Moon will appear smaller than normal, whilst Mars is at its closest to Earth and should be visible next to the Moon.

This Moon will be full at 4 degrees of Aquarius and will, therefore, have its greatest effect on the early degrees of the fixed signs – Leo, Aquarius, Taurus and Scorpio.

The Sun in its own sign of Leo is desperate to shine, to receive praise and admiration. But the Moon is eclipsed, and the Moon is the Sun’s audience. So, this Sun has to learn to let go of the needs of his ego. He has to learn to trust that his own abilities within him are strong enough. That means he has to look inside himself and find his own sense of self-worth. He has to give himself up to the numinous and work without his efforts being recognised. The Sun is strong – he is in his own sign and, although he can’t see it, his capabilities are strong too. Basically, he has to learn to find strength from within rather than from without, so he can understand that he can put his past behavioural patterns behind him and continue on his own path, true to the one that he is meant to tread which will fulfil his soul’s purpose.

At this eclipse five planets are retrograde – Mercury, Mars, Saturn, Neptune and Pluto. When planets are retrograde their energy is slowed but on the positive side it gives an opportunity to re-assess, re-view, re-work. Mars retrograde and eclipsed may be a tad more problematic, particularly as the eclipse makes a difficult aspect to Uranus, which gives the energy a more rebellious, more revolutionary feel. Radical changes may hit out of the blue as the masculine and the old ways are eclipsed. We may see a release of repressed angry feelings but let them out and recognise them for what they are. They are of no use to you and they hold you back. It may seem hard at first to deal with, but the ultimate ideal is that recognising them for what they are and letting go of these past patterns will ultimately liberate you from the restrictions of the old ways that no longer serve any purpose whatsoever. Saturn is strong in his own sign and he makes a positive angle to Uranus so if you can do this you will find support. You may have to dig deep to find your courage, but you can really make the energy of this eclipse count in a positive fashion if your mind can view it from a different angle.

Take care folks during the crazy energy of eclipse season – there’s another one following in August, this time a solar eclipse.

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The Entitlement Dis-ease

It seems that there is a constant chatter about a pervasive sense of entitlement that has invaded our modern Western world. I can’t be the only one who considers that modern life is poorer for this, or maybe I am and I’m just getting bah-humbug older.   We are so much more affluent and have many more life choices than our forebears ever had; in the Western world we rarely have to concern ourselves with just survival and yet we have rising levels of anxiety, depression, mental health issues and suicides.   From a purely logical standpoint this doesn’t make any sense.

The dictionary definition of entitlement is given as the fact of having a right to something. But what really do we have a ‘right’ to?   Do we even actually have a right to anything at all in life? We may hope, we may desire, we may strive towards certain outcomes, but if we feel we have a right to something and then don’t get it, then it follows that we will be unhappy. So could this be one of the reasons behind our societal malaise?

Entitlement has always tended to be associated with the moneyed elite who can buy their way to whatever they want, but nowadays it seems so much more evident in other areas of society as well, but perhaps nowhere more than the millennial generation – those born after 1980 to a ‘baby boomer’ generation who wanted better things for their children to experience.

The sense of entitlement is like a horrible toxic weed which pervades society and is indeed something which I believe is very damaging to society as a whole.   As I said at the beginning of this article – do we really have an actual right to anything in this life?

So what kinds of entitlement might we be seeing now? Here’s just a few off the top of my head.

  • Political entitlement
  • Entitlement to fame and money without the merit of talent and hard work
  • Not in my back-yard entitlement
  • Nanny state entitlement – expect the NHS/government to fix everything for us
  • Spiritual/new age entitlement
  • Religious entitlement
  • Philosophical entitlement
  • Entitlement to my rights
  • Money
  • Social media entitlement

 

So, can we see some astrological signatures in the development of this entitlement disease?  For this I like to look at the outer planetary cycles – the generational cycles – because these tend to mark changes which come from the social and economic forces evident within the collective.

First let’s go back to the 1930’s.   This was a period of real hardship.   We had a financial depression and the Second World War.   People’s lives and security were threatened on many levels.   Those involved fought in defence of their country, for their families, for their beliefs and for their basic freedom.   At this point we had a meeting between Pluto, God of the Underworld, and Uranus, God of the Sky, very similar to that which we have experienced since around 2008 until now (2018).

The 1930’s and the more recent aspect between Pluto and Uranus were both squares – a square means conflict or clash. Pluto/Uranus speaks very much of revolution and social rebellion – the breaking down of old structures to bring about new – a radical restructuring of peoples and nations.   Pluto is representative of wealth and power and wants to purge whatever is hidden or decaying for the purpose of transformation and regeneration, whilst Uranus, discovered during the 18th century Enlightenment period wants to awaken and enlighten.

This aspect represents the collapse of an old order to make way for a new.   Uranus energy is symbolised in myth by Prometheus who gave man the gift of fire in order that he might achieve a new type of freedom through heightened awareness.    So as Pluto breaks down the old order, Uranus sparks innovative and progressive thinking towards a new world order. This new energy can come in at a very fast rate and be almost shocking in its manner, particularly as it can appear in many different and highly unexpected forms. The first stage, however, is for Pluto to reveal what is rotten, what must be purged and what is going on underneath the surface hidden from view.

So I think we can safely say that we saw this type of energy in the 1930’s and over the last ten years we have seen economic recession, the Arab Spring, the refugee crisis, Fukushima, crisis in the EU, the Ukraine and in Syria.      The Trump election and Brexit are both examples of a Pluto/Uranus conflict, but I believe both were born from the anger of a stratum of society who felt they were being totally overlooked; the anger and frustrations of a populace who felt that they were not listened to and that their own needs and desires were being overlooked.   And they revolted!!!   This came as a complete shock to other parts of society who in turn felt that what they considered as their right and entitlement was being removed.

At a conjunction the two planets are standing together so there is more potential for the energy to blend rather than clash. The Pluto/Uranus conjunction of the 1850’s saw epic scale innovation and new order because this was the period of the Industrial Revolution, the Gold Rush, and ordinary people getting richer. In actual fact this was the beginning of capitalism and mass production as we moved from industry based around farming and working the land to one based more around factories, towns and production.  At the conjunction of Pluto and Uranus in the 1960’s we saw the Cold War, war in Vietnam as well as social and cultural change on an epic scale with an escalation of technological developments, advancements in space exploration and advancement in society, helped by the discovery of cheap fossil fuels such as oil.

 

I can speak first hand about the unprecedented rate of development of the sixties because I was a child of the sixties.   It was magical, amazing – we were the first group of teenagers to actually matter and we were a mass market like no other before us, avidly drinking all that was on offer. We knew it was different and it was so exciting. This was the start of the counter culture and nowhere was it perhaps more noticeable for us teenagers than within music and fashion. The Swinging Sixties had arrived. We had the Beatles, the new bands of the 60’s, many of whom are still going today, and fashions aimed directly at them by designers such as Mary Quant and Biba.   Technological advances such as transistor radios and affordable record players helped the spread. Girls also discovered sexual freedom for the first time with the advent of the Pill.    After the austerity of the war this generation wanted to elbow their way to new types of freedom and new exciting cultures. Now, whilst their parents might have been rather shocked at what was going on, or not really understood what had hit them at the speed of a rocket, by the same token they wanted their children to enjoy their youth having had their own forcibly taken from them by war and deprivation.

We saw the beginnings of a drive for a new world with unusually rapid technological advances, an underlying spirit of restlessness for experiment and innovation and a desire to rebel against convention and conventional structures – we got a taste for the new and we wanted it quick.

 

The baby boomer children who grew up in the counter culture environment of the ‘60s then went on to have the millennial children who were parented very differently from the generation before.    So, the millennial era benefited from the progressive views of the 60’s and became the era of child centred living – no longer should children be seen and not heard. The child was at the centre.   These children were told they were special and too much of a competitive environment was discouraged.   Nothing wrong with that you might say but it’s all about balance.   And as the pendulum swings its not easy to find that harmonious point of balance.

And what did we have astrologically – a Uranus/Neptune conjunction between 1988 and 1997, the meeting of the two most ideological planets in the cosmos, which would herald yet another magical new technological cycle bringing with it astonishing transformations at a remarkable and unprecedented rate of knots.   This was the time of the birth of the world wide web, the internet and everything else that the web has led on to, including the ‘selfie’.   And for me the selfie is the epitome of the entitlement disease – can you get much more entitled than the ‘me me me’ vein of a selfie.

So, let’s discuss the forms of entitlement. Some, I think, are pretty obvious, but you might wonder why I put spiritual/New Age entitlement on the list.   Well, New Age thinking has brought much that is good to our modern society, but I can’t be the only one who gets fed up with those who put themselves on a weekend course and then consider themselves to be so good that they now call themselves a practitioner.   They have found a place of power and are completely working from their ego; they also tend to be the biggest spouters of the New Age type proverbs and sayings.    Because the ‘alternative’ brigade is not really regulated as such, those who work hard and honestly at their craft are negatively affected by those who suffer from this ego entitlement.

Entitlement to fame and celebrity status is very much a modern disease, together with a desire to be famous and rich without possessing any obvious talent. On the back of this has spawned a huge swathe of reality TV series, which for me bear no relevance whatsoever to reality in any shape or form, but which seem to provide a good few with an envious lifestyle.   But one wonders how much agents and production companies are ruthlessly exploiting these reality star, talentless people and making a lot of money out of them. And, in spite of their lack of talent, but because they are exploited and ruthlessly promoted, they in turn have become the heroes and role models of today for many of the young to aspire to.

Social media entitlement including the selfie – for which to my horror we recently devoted a National Day to it.   How on earth did that happen I ask myself?   I get Mothers’ Day, Fathers’ Day, Armed Forces’ Day – but seriously, National Selfie day??!!!   Now I am a fan of social media but everything in balance.   And the problem with social media is how it can take over lives and produce an unhealthy sense of envy.    Maybe we really do believe that all 2093 people on our Facebook are our true and faithful friends but, of course, we never put our humdrum everyday rubbish on Facebook – we put on posts when we are having a good time.   But if the reader does not look between the lines and is also experiencing an unhappy time this can easily lead to an envy born from a disallowed and frustrated sense of entitlement.

We see now technology that is exponentially rising year on year so that our level of change is the greatest ever seen.   However, we also have an exponential rise in mental health issues so I question whether we as human beings can actually mentally deal with the advances at the rate they are seen. Maybe some parts of society have already become a hybrid race – half human and half AI – as they spend their days bent over, glued to their mobile phones.   Have we become slaves to technology now rather than masters of it?

And, of course, this is not all about Pluto and Uranus in aspect – there are many other factors.   For the sake of time and space I’m just picking on the main ones.   Since the 1930’s we have experienced an on/off opportunistic relationship between Neptune and Pluto which has fuelled a deeper awareness of, and study of, the workings of our unconscious mind; before the likes of people such as Jung and Freud we didn’t really think about how we felt and where our minds took us.

And it is against the backdrop of the Pluto/Uranus force for change that the next convergence of outer planetary transits will layer on top, and we have some extreme convergences between now and the mid 2020’s. Some of these convergences suggest that we could be on the brink of a new era.

We are coming up to a conjunction of Jupiter, Saturn and Pluto in Capricorn just before we see a new Jupiter/Saturn Great Cycle beginning at 0 degrees of Aquarius.   Jupiter/Saturn cycles are historical markers and markers of socio-economic attitudes – this conjunction marks a move from the element of earth (capitalism, materialism) to air (intellect, mental attitudes, science, space).   The cycle in earth began in the mid 1800’s and correlates with the Industrial Revolution, the beginning of mass production, mass movement of people, mass travel and the next will be the first in the air element for nearly a thousand years.

There are also some signs that have not been seen since the end of the Roman Empire as well as other signatures not seen since the Bronze Age. So, perhaps this signals a time when we will harness technology in the same way that we learned to harness metals in the Bronze Age. All these cycles see a mixture of negative and positive potentials.   Saturn conjunct Pluto suggests the end of one era accompanied by breakdown, pessimism, crisis of authority, inflated entitlement, but it can also provide sustained purpose coupled with a high level of resourcefulness which can lead to the attainment of great success.   What it suggests to me is that those who can dig deep within themselves will be able to push beyond and achieve. Those who will come through well will be those who are prepared, those who are able to work their way out of a given situation with tenacity and determination. They will have to truly be aware of any issues, own the responsibility for them and put in the hard work, effort and sustained focus that will be required.   That won’t happen if there is a sense of entitlement – it will only happen for those whose strength of character allows them to put this aside and work through issues.

Before the mid 2020’s we will also see a conflict aspect between Saturn and Uranus which suggests that possibly structures which should never fail might just do so. This aspect heralds radical change to old, traditional ways and also suggests an increase in general angst and hypersensitivity. With this type of cycle those who will succeed are those who don’t resist change but rather embrace it and find ways to work with it.   Those who fall by the wayside are those who cling grimly on to the old ways. It is possible that we may even see a failure of technology or with Uranus in Taurus, some kind of extreme climate change for which many will be ill-prepared but will nevertheless be forced to deal with.

Putting this all together I honestly believe that we are on the verge of a new era (which should be the contents of a further blog).   But I will just give a few thoughts here of possibilities – you might care to add yours.

  • Integration of technology with human biology alongside mainstream AI
  • Huge leaps in technology, particularly AI and space exploration
  • Major cathartic event for society
  • Extreme climate issues – possibly cooling rather than warming
  • Death of the structure of the planet which has to be faced
  • Extra terrestrial disclosure (Roswell Saturn Pluto 1947)
  • Massive confrontation with reality
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New Moon July 13 2018

The Moon will be new in London at 3.48 a.m. on July 13th, 2018.   This is not just a New Moon though, it is also a partial solar eclipse, the first of three eclipses.   One thing you can be certain of in eclipse season is that you can’t really be certain of anything.   Remember also that the eclipse energy is manifesting both before and after the eclipse – it is not just a one-day energy.

Falling in the sign of Cancer it speaks of highlighting issues around nurturing ourselves – our bodies, our homes, our families.   This is a powerful New Moon with the Sun and Moon opposing Pluto, God of the Underworld, symbolising the need for transformation and regeneration from deep within.   So the question is, what is it within you that needs to undergo a radical transformation?   What behaviour patterns need to be replaced by thoughts and actions which could serve you in a much better fashion than currently?   Now you may not be able to put this into action just yet, but this is very much about taking the opportunity of looking within at a very deep level in terms of both inner behaviour patterns based on emotional needs as well as life direction and general vitality.  To make this happen in the most positive fashion we need to open ourselves to our highest consciousness and allow what we need to transform us to come in.   And, for this to work for our higher good, we need to allow something to die first so that we may experience a rebirth – in this way the phoenix can rise from the ashes and we can experience transformation.   So, open your hearts and allow past-learned behavioural patterns, which no longer serve, to be purged and replaced with the new.   This is not easy I know but if you resist it will be so much harder.

On a more practical level this is also the perfect symbolism for the young boys being brought up from the depths of the underworld by some very very brave rescuers.

 

In the chart we also see a really positive aspect between Uranus and Juno, Saturn and Venus with Ceres all in earth signs.   This speaks of allowing our relationships to change in order to bring more stability, longevity and a kind of liberating awakening that things can be different. There is also a second positive aspect in this chart – this time in the water signs.   The Sun and Moon are making a nice aspect to Jupiter and Neptune, which suggests that we need to allow the highest potentials of our being permission to come in to our consciousness.

 

So ensure that you allow the time to contemplate what is required and to do this be at one with nature and allow your emotions to be free of restrictions so that true transformation can be achieved.

 

In the UK chart this eclipse falls in the tenth house which represents the government, the monarchy and the public status of the UK itself.   It also hits the UK moon – the populace. This suggests that something occurs which may affect the populace.   Now at the moment we have all the Brexit shenanigans, which are truly affecting our position and status within the world.   We have the visit of President Trump – we may not like him but should we not at least give him a dignified welcome to our country as befits his position as President of America?   And we should remember that the trapped Thai boys have been brought to safety by a team of British cave divers who hold a well-deserved reputation as the best in the world. So, we should really be singing about what makes Britain good.

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Harry and Meghan

On 19th May, 2018, Prince Harry married Meghan Markle – a mixed race, divorced American actress. So what might this mean for both Harry and the Royal Family.

Most people can picture a young Harry walking behind his mother’s coffin and we rejoice in his happiness. However, beware the woman who breaks his heart! I really hope that this is a lasting union but I will bide my time on this one until I see how events pan out. I think there is a lot of water to pass under the bridge in the next two to three years. She did the audition got the part – now can she hack it? Did she want the role or does she truly love her Prince?

Meghan is Cancer rising, with her rising point not a million miles away from the UK Moon. Her natal Libra Moon sits with Saturn and Jupiter so I think she has the potential to instinctively pick up the traditions, the restrictions and the pomp of the British monarchy – but will she like it?

Her Sun and Mercury in Leo love the limelight and indicate her acting prowess, but sitting in her first house also demonstrate that she is very driven by her own desires. Her Aries Midheaven is ruled by Mars, which in Meghan’s case sits in her twelfth house in Cancer. So it’s a tricky Mars – a fire planet having to sit in water – what does she hide? Secrets? Darker personality traits? Interestingly, Meghan’s Mars sits right on Harry’s descendant (the point of the significant other), while her Sun and Mercury sit in his seventh house of partnerships and marriage. Chiron, the wounded healer, sits at 22 Taurus with Harry’s Moon at 21 Taurus. Will Meghan heal Harry or will she hurt him?

Harry probably loves Meghan’s drive and energy and the placement of her Uranus in relationship to Harry’s chart indicates that he finds her exciting – Uranus sits on his South Node (familiarity), opposes his Moon (perhaps she reminds him of the free spirit of his mother), sextiles his Sun and sits right on his Midheaven.

As they married Uranus had just entered Taurus and what is so interesting is that the last time we saw Uranus in Taurus was in 1934/35 – it was in 1936 that Edward VIII abdicated in order to marry Wallis Simpson, the American divorcee who brought havoc to the monarchy. Here we see history almost repeating itself – will it be for the downfall of the monarchy or this time for the good? 0 Taurus is the position of the Queen’s Sun and Prince Charles’ Moon – Uranus will pass this degree twice more in October and then March 2019. Uranus brings change and shock very quickly – what will this bring?

Additionally Pluto, the planet of transformation and change, has opposed the UK Moon in January of this year (just after the engagement was announced) and will do so twice more in August and November 2018. The Moon in the chart of a country represents the people and general public. The UK Moon is in the 10th house of royalty and tradition and sits with the Queen’s nodal axis – she is the keeper of the traditions and she instinctively understands that the place of the monarchy is to put the glue into the country and uphold a sense of patriotic feeling. Once Pluto has opposed the UK Moon he will cross the Queen’s nodal axis and then her ascendant, later passing over Meghan’s ascendant. The eclipse on July 13 at 20 cancer picks up on transiting Pluto. What deep changes will this bring, particularly with the Jupiter, Saturn, Pluto combination sitting on the Queen’s nodes and Ascendant in 2020?

Additionally, transiting Saturn over the next months triggers so many of the Royal Family’s charts. During the second half of 2018 transiting Saturn travels back to 2 Capricorn and moves to 11 Capricorn by the end of the year. This will trigger the UK Sun at 10 Capricorn, Harrys Ascendant at 11 Capricorn, square Meghans MC at 11 Aries. It will also bring up memories of Diana with her Sun at 9 Cancer. Transiting Saturn will square William’s Mars at 9 Libra, oppose Camilla’s Moon at 10 Cancer. And into the new year Saturn will cross William’s nodal axis at 14 Capricorn, square Charles’ MC at 13 Aries, oppose the Queen’s Pluto at 12 cancer, cross Philipp’s Ascendant at 13 Capricorn and meet Kate’s Sun at 19 Capricorn by the Spring of 2019. (Bear in mind that transiting Pluto will also have been sitting on Kate’s Sun, the Queen’s nodal axis and the UK Moon). That’s one hell of a lot of hits to so many key points in the charts of the main Royal Family!

So, for now I will sit on the fence. Change is coming in for the Royal Family but will it be for good or for ill?

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The Billionaires are looking for the Spiders from Mars

At the end of February 2017 Elon Musk’s company SpaceX announced they would be transporting the first two fare paying passengers on a trip around the Moon and back to Earth in 2018. Whilst SpaceX awaits its license from the Federal Aviation Authority, the space arm of Richard Branson’s Virgin Group has already received its license for passenger space travel. It seems we are about to enter the world of the private space entrepreneur.

We seemed so close to greater space exploration during the 1960’s. That was the time of the first flyby of Mars and Venus, the first re-usable crewed spacecraft, the first orbital docking between two space craft and, of course, the first man walked on the Moon some 45 years ago. When one considers how much technology has progressed it is unbelievable that the same level of progress does not appear to have been applied to space travel. It seems that perhaps public and political sentiment questioned the huge expense of such space exploration, resulting in a much more modest budget and an apparent back pedaling. Today the US even relies on Russia to ferry US astronauts to and from the International Space Station.

So who are the billionaire space players?

Elon Musk – co founder of PayPal and CEO of Tesla Motors – Space X
Jeffrey P. Bezos – founder of Amazon and owner of Washington Post – Blue Origin
Sir Richard Branson – founder Virgin Group – Galactic Ventures and Virgin Orbit
Paul Allen – co-founder Microsoft – Vulcan Aerospace and Stratolaunch

Why are the billionaires leading the race into space?
Because they can? Or ego trip? Or a clue may lie in Branson’s words: ‘our very nature compels us to push beyond boundaries and to see what lies beyond the horizon’. Well maybe that’s the nature of a billionaire – particularly if there’s money in it, alongside the kudos of a place in history. Billionaires also look at costs – something which government owned organisations are notoriously bad at. True entrepreneurs know that they have to streamline their processes to be effective and profitable. They also know that sometimes they will fail – at times very publicly – understanding that they will learn much from their failures and that they will have an opportunity to come back stronger. Branson, for instance, has demonstrated this attitude following the fatal accident experienced in 2014 with Virgin Galactic’s SpaceShipTwo rocket plane.

Musk appears to have had an interest in space from a very young age. His goal is for SpaceX to accelerate space exploration, ultimately with the idea of man becoming a multi-planetary being and for a self-sustaining civilization on Mars.

Musk tried to understand why rockets were so expensive. With this in mind he set out to make spaceflight significantly cheaper in order that it could become routine and affordable. His developments in re-usable space technology mean that even the manufacturer of China’s low cost Long March rocket cannot beat SpaceX pricing. Furthermore, Musk insists that performance will increase and prices will drop over time.

Bezos has a goal of ‘dynamic entrepreneurial explosion in space.’ His vision is to put all heavy industry into space so that the Earth can be preserved for residential and light industrial use and thereby become pollution free, whilst millions of people live and work in space.

Branson has had his sights set on private space travel for some time. He wants to create the first commercial spaceline and, unlike the rocket technology being developed by Musk and Bezos, he considers that people would prefer the comforts of a space plane that would land on a runway, as opposed to a rocket launch. For Branson space travel is all about the customer experience.

Paul Allen’s dream is a combination of plane and rocket technology. He is building Stratolaunch, the world’s largest airplane with a wingspan of 385 feet – wider than a football field, the plane will act as an aerial Launchpad for satellites and spacecraft and is designed to carry a rocket which will drop away from the main plane and launch into orbit.

Putting it in context

Space insiders and NASA had a pretty good idea of where space technology would go under a Hilary Clinton presidency, but the election of Trump has thrown this into disarray. So what will Trump do about the Space Launch System, currently under construction by Boeing – NASA’s flagship programme -which will supposedly transport astronauts to Mars? SLS is expensive, especially now that it can be compared to the progress of private companies such as SpaceX. Bezos and Musk have both launched computer controlled booster rockets that can be re-launched on earth – something NASA has not achieved. This is a game-changing development. Up to now boosters have always separated from their payloads and plummeted into the sea, discarded after a single launch. Bringing them back safely suggests substantially lower costs.

Will Trump want to be the President who transforms space travel and sends US astronauts to Mars? Of course. He’s a billionaire. Trump wants to make America great again – as it was when Americans first walked on the Moon. This would make Mars a tempting goal for Trump and, as a businessman himself, he will be looking at the cost of NASA doing this against private entrepreneurialship. Mars may not be ideal but it’s the best location we have right now and Trump would likely gain major political benefits if he could make this happen. And, in fact, during March of this year it was announced that Trump has signed a bill into law that updates NASA’s mission to add exploration of Mars. So, who will Trump collaborate with as NASA transitions from space exploration to the economic development of space via privately owned and operated space stations? Musk is on the highly probable list. He is already a member of Trump’s economic advisory council, he has spoken of sending people to Mars by 2024 and he has made no secret that he firmly believes that it is only a matter of time before Earth suffers a mass-extinction event and that we should be planning for this by colonizing Mars. Bezos must be another candidate – he also wants to colonise space in order to protect Earth.
On an astrological level Musk, Bezos and Allen (exact birth times unknown) all have a stimulating fit with Trump, Musk and Bezos having the best chemistry with him. But by the far the most likely candidate for a besty bosom buddy with the US President is Branson. So watch this space – or just watch space!

Amongst others in the space race are Boeing, Arianespace and, fairly unexpectedly, the UAE also have plans to colonise Mars with their project Mars 2117. As an oil rich nation, they are cash rich and could perhaps team up with one of the other main players who have the expertise. Musk, for instance, has recently opened a Tesla showroom in Dubai.

Nuclear thermal propulsion is another factor to be considered within the space race. It is a fundamentally new capability – well as far as we know it is a new capability! This technology would make it possible to get to Mars in just six weeks as opposed to 18 months. Russia is already on the point of testing a nuclear engine in 2018. However, whilst the journey time to Mars might be shortened with technology, not all of nature can be conquered. Planetary alignment means that the trip to Mars can only be made every two years, so those who go would have to be prepared to stay on Mars until the next window of opportunity allows them to return to Earth. This perhaps is also where Artificial Intelligence will become most useful. Rather than leaving humans to do the necessary development on Mars, AI could be created to do necessary construction work and initially adapt to conditions on the red planet.

And finally – what does the astrology indicate

Well the 2020’s certainly look a decade which will be pivotal in our history, which means we are now in the warming up period for this. I don’t want to go into too much detail right now because it will be the subject of another blog but just to summarise what we are in looking at:

In 2018 Uranus will enter Taurus. These guys are unlikely to prove to be happy bedfellows. Uranus seeks sudden change, shocks, upheavals – although ultimately to bring liberation, new ways of thinking, innovation and awakening through upsetting the status quo. Taurus on the other hand is perfectly happy wallowing in the status quo. It is a fixed and suborn sign that is primarily concerned with safety and security. It is about things that are tangible, the economic system, money, homes, the land and population. Uranus will march through like a tornado without giving a fig about safety or security – he wants freedom. Ultimately, he wants to wake everyone up from their slumbers and the only way he knows how to do this is to send them into turmoil.

We say history repeats itself, which it does, but never in exactly the same way. The last time Uranus was in Taurus was between 1934 and 1942. This was the period just after the Depression and during and just after World War 2. So clearly it was a time when material security and land was threatened. It led to revolutionary changes which, although shocking at first, ultimately became mainstream. We may indeed be on the point of some kind of global economic reset and/or threats to land and security. This could also manifest on a physical level with volcanic eruptions, earthquakes and extreme weather conditions.

In December 2020 we begin a new 240 year Jupiter/Saturn cycle, this time in the element of air, as they strikingly meet at 0 degrees of Aquarius. The Jupiter Saturn cycle is known as the Great Chronocrator, and a new cycle is regarded as a pivotal point in history. It reflects a country’s economic development and growth, the legal system, government policies, a nation’s manufacturing, trade, commerce and capitalism. Since 1842 the cycle has been in earth signs, which are about practical and financial matters, population, industry, food and the accumulation of wealth. 1842 was the time of the Industrial Revolution, a time which saw the growth of empires and population explosions. An air cycle suggests a stronger focus on culture, innovation, intellectual awakening. In 1961 the cycle took on a hybrid earth/air flavour as the two planets remained in conjunction through Capricorn and into Aquarius. We saw then a combination of Capricornian ambition and Aquarian innovations, such as those that led to man’s exploration of space and ultimately walking on the Moon. In the 1980’s there was a meeting of Jupiter and Saturn in air – this saw the beginning of the Aids epidemic and another space push.

In January 2020 we will see a Saturn Pluto conjunction at 22 Capricorn – but not just Saturn and Pluto though – they will be joined by a line up of Sun, Mercury and Ceres at this sensitive point. Later in March 2020 Saturn and Pluto will be joined by Jupiter and Mars still in Capricorn. What a line up. The Saturn Pluto cycle speaks of the end of an era and a collective compulsive power. It also speaks of a resistance to authority, mass surveillance and redistribution of power. For example Edward Snowden was born with a Saturn Pluto conjunction in Libra. Saturn Pluto aspects were apparent during World War 1, the great Depression, Roswell, the peak of the Vietnam War, the 1982 global recession and the escalation of the Cold War.

In 2023 we have Pluto’s entry into Aquarius. So we have an emphasis on planets of the collective entering Aquarius – a sign associated with science and innovation. We also, with Uranus in Taurus and the line up in Capricorn have an emphasis on the earth signs particularly associated with money, security, the economy, big business and government. Pluto’s travel through Capricorn has been much about exposing the truth of earthly oligarchical ambitions, the ambitions of the elite, exposure of secrets, etc etc. With Pluto we have to go through a death, transformation and rebirth process before we can arrive at the insights and innovations that Aquarius might bring.

We also have a dance between Saturn and Neptune in 2025 but they do not become exact until they are both at 0 degrees Aries. This is a very significant point – it is the world point and suggests something particularly important on a global level. Both planets are involved in boundaries – Saturn wants to create them whilst Neptune wants to dissolve. Might we move closer to a one-world governance at this point in time.

So in the 2020’s we see two major conjunctions both at 0 degrees of a sign. This is unusual and I think we are heading towards unusual and unpredictable times.

I think there will indeed be much to see on the level of space travel and colonization, extra terrestrial existence and an explosion in artificial intelligence. Before then we still have more to be uncovered in the Pluto in Capricorn period. However, we must bear in mind that it would be a bit like predicting the internet before we knew anything about it. So I think we are likely to see an explosion in robots taking over from humans in various places of work – what will the humans do instead I ask myself. The last time Pluto was in Aquarius was in the 1700’s just before we saw the Industrial Revolution. That was a time of inventions of machinery, which would make greater production possible. We must bear in mind that Aquarius has a reputation for aloofness and detachment – so we will see human looking robots but devoid of empathy or heart. But with a Saturn/Neptune conjunction on the world point will we see a blurring of the boundaries between robot and human? Is there something in the collective that will make the robot a more conscious entity? Or in the search for greater and greater technology will we find we have lost the point of being human – our hearts and souls?

Driverless cars are likely and even a hybrid version is possible that can both drive and fly. Robots are likely to take over many jobs that are currently done by humans. But it is not inconceivable that the big news will be on the technology, extra terrestrial and space fronts. Maybe even an invasion of the spiders from Mars!!!!!

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Marine Le Pen and the French Presidential Election

On April 23rd the French people go to the polls to elect a new President. Should there be no clear winner on this day the top two candidates will go forward for a run off election on May 7th.

I failed to put my money where my mouth was during the US election so today I have put on a bet that Marine le Pen will win.

Born in August 1968, Le Pen has her Sun and Mercury in fiery Leo. She also has a Uranus Pluto conjunction, reflecting the call for change currently in the cosmos which has so far been answered by a vote for Brexit and a subsequent one for maverick Donald Trump.

 

At the time of the election Le Pen has the Jupiter/Uranus/Pluto T square activating three of the four angles – Ascendant, Descendant and IC, as well as her natal Saturn.    And just as with Donald Trump, her progressed Sun moves into a new 30 year phase, this time one of Libra – the same sign as that of her beloved country.

 

At the time of the election the French fifth republic chart is also activated – across the ascendant/descendant axis and with Pluto in the 10th house of government, indicating a radical transformation.   France is also experiencing a Saturn return, suggesting that its people are auditing how they feel and the direction the government is taking them.

 

Le Pen’s Midheaven plugs into the Moon of the French Republic – in other words her intentions are for the people.   Her Sun picks up the French Uranus reflecting her ideals for change, whilst her Ascendant/Descendant picks up on that of the French chart in reverse.   And with her Saturn sitting on the French South Node in the first house, she will undoubtedly work hard to bring back what she considers made France a great country.   In fact bringing back their countries to what made them great in the first place is a running theme at the moment and can be seen in the words of Donald Trump in the USA and Theresa May in the UK.

 

So I’m putting money on a Le Pen win.

 

 

 

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Lunar eclipse February 11, 2017

This month’s full Moon is the first of February’s two eclipses and the first of a series across the Leo/Aquarius axis.

The solar eclipse on the 26th of this month highlights the opposing degree of the eclipse of 1st September, 2016, so we may see a return to issues which were active at that point in time.

A Full Moon puts the spotlight on relationships with the Sun and Moon opposing each other. With this particular eclipse we see the Moon occupying the sign where the Sun feels most comfortable. So it’s a time to reflect on whether we are emotionally nurtured by the course in life we are taking. It’s a time to reflect on all relationships that we have but perhaps more importantly the relationship we have with ourself.

We still have the nasty Jupiter, Uranus Pluto T square active and, in fact, we have Jupiter now retrograding back to re-activate this energy. So we still have ratcheted up reactions, as we are seeing, for example, with the hostility towards President Trump. So this is still a time to exercise caution, to not act in haste and to really think before acting. In fact, this lunar eclipse makes a nice aspect to Donald Trump’s Sun so maybe he will get a bit of a break.

On the positive side what we do have though is that the opposition aspects between Jupiter to Uranus and the Sun to the Moon are contained within a mystic rectangle. This means that these difficult energies are encased by some positive and potentially healing energies which offer opportunities to those who perhaps want to bring resolutions to conflicts or just to calm down over reactions. But it doesn’t end with the mystic rectangle for we have Saturn making positive aspects to the mystic rectangle and creating a triangle on top of the rectangle. We could almost look at this as a pyramid with Saturn at the apex. Now Saturn does represent limitations and restrictions, but he also wants to have boundaries. So Saturn has the potential here to offer a solution here by laying down some real guidelines within conflict issues and may provide a sense of structure, resolve, responsibility and patience to situations. So, whilst we have the two sets of opposite energies tugging at each other, on the outskirts of this we have positive harmonious aspects between the Moon, Jupiter, Saturn, the Sun and Uranus trying to broker deals between the squabbling factions. This is an unusual and magical pattern and with Saturn at its ‘handle’ there is the possibility that by bringing in wisdom and responsibility we have a opportunity to bring lasting practical solutions and structure so long as we are prepared to put in the effort and the hard work that Saturn demands.

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