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Astrology by Hand Week 41

Astrology Horoscope: John McCainAt the end of last week’s article on Senator John McCain, we were looking at his Venus-Saturn opposition from the Twelfth House (Venus) to the Sixth House (Saturn). The next thing that we need to notice is that Venus is moving away from the opposition. This is an aspect whose influence was passing away at birth and which should have less influence as time passes, so it is likely that it has manifested most strongly early in life. But let’s look more at this Saturn.

Saturn is in the Sixth House. This is not one of most astrologers’ favorite houses. It has to do with work, illness and in the older forms of astrology is one of the houses of enemies. Given that McCain was imprisoned by the North Vietnamese, the enemies of our nation at that time, this old interpretation of the Sixth seems appropriate in McCain’s case.

However, there is an exception to the general negativity that astrologers used to feel about the Sixth House. This exception is embodied in the fact that even now most astrologers regard the Sixth House as signifying work. The medieval astrologers stated that if there were some strong connection between the Sixth House and the Tenth House, then the Sixth House would have more to do with career and work than with illness or enemies.

In McCain’s chart, Saturn in the Sixth is the planet making the closest aspect to the Midheaven, the point at the top of the chart, and Saturn will be the next planet that the Midheaven aspects. Recall that the Midheaven has the strongest signification for career. The aspect is a trine, usually regarded as harmonious or favorable, and it is less than four degrees out.

What this means is that something or several things about that Saturn and what it signifies would assist McCain in his career. Well, in fact, his political career is at least to some extent derived from his war-hero reputation, which in turn is derived from his experience and behavior as a P.O.W. And let’s not forget that this Saturn is one of the rulers of the Ascendant, or rising degree, which describes the way that an individual appears to the world.

Now this Saturn in the Sixth is not a perfect one, even aside from the fact that it is in the Sixth. It is retrograde, i.e., apparently going backward in the zodiac, and Saturn has no dignity in its degree of Pisces, a state known as peregrine. But this is itself interesting. “Peregrine” means foreign or wandering. McCain was from the North Vietnamese point of view a foreign enemy, so here we have one Ascendant ruler “peregrine” opposing Venus, the other Ascendant ruler, in the Twelfth House, signifying imprisonment.

A question here! Could I or anyone else have forecasted any of this? If we lived in the Middle Ages the answer would probably be “yes,” because this sort of thing was not unusual with the noble clientele of the medieval astrologer. It is much harder to forecast this kind of thing now because the greater fluidity of our social order makes the outcome of astrological combinations much less determined. But we can say this: As McCain has already discovered in connection with the Keating scandals of a few years ago, someone with a chart like his must live an absolutely squeaky clean existence in order to make this aspect in his chart work at all well.

Back to Saturn! It is doing something else that is interesting. Jupiter is approaching a 90-degree angle, or square, to Saturn. And since Saturn is going backward, Saturn is also approaching Jupiter. This does not look especially good at first, but it is much better than it looks.

Saturn is in Pisces, which is traditionally ruled by Jupiter (I use the old rulers). Jupiter is in Sagittarius, which means that Jupiter is dignified. Any planet being in its own rulership is considered good for that planet. This means Jupiter is strong, and its strength can rub off on Saturn, making this a much more productive square than average according to medieval astrologers.

While this square is, like all squares, an unstable aspect, it is much more likely than most squares to lead to something useful. So here is yet another indication that the Saturn in his chart might be more helpful than it first seems.

So we have a pragmatic conservative who has turned a difficult experience to his advantage. But what makes him buck his party’s establishment the way he does? Next week we will look at this question, and we will see why this is happening at this time.



Rob Hand, author of Planets in Transit and other works, is now involved in the translation and publication of texts regarding ancient and medieval astrology through ARHAT Media Inc.
View the entire Astrology by Hand Library.

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For more information about Rob Hand, click here.

Other StarIQ articles by Rob Hand:

  • Astrology by Hand 13   7/3/2003
  • Astrology by Hand 1   4/10/2003
  • Astrology by Hand 14   8/11/2001
  • Astrology by Hand 13   8/4/2001
  • Astrology by Hand 11   7/21/2001
  • Astrology by Hand 46   5/5/2001

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