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The world of astrology is currently buzzing with speculation about some unusual astrological phenomena due to arrive during the month of November. On Nov. 8 there will be a lunar eclipse that occurs as part of a six planet configuration alternately dubbed the Star of David and the Harmonic Concordance. The eclipse occurs in the sign Taurus  in the Twelfth House of the Gemini Rising U.S. chart and makes a strong square aspect to the U.S. natal Moon in the Tenth House. Some astrologers are conjecturing that the eclipse could bring dire events that include possible assassination of the president. (Editor's note: John Whalen uses a Gemini rising U.S. chart.)

Jupiter-Saturn and the U.S. Presidential Death Cycle

Modern astrology has made many advances in the last 25 years, moving away from superstition and "occultism" toward psychology and statistical science. Yet some of the dark ideas of medieval astrology linger on. One of them is the belief that every 20 years a United States president will die in office. Ever since William Henry Harrison died of pneumonia a month after taking office, presidents elected during the year of a Jupiter-Saturn conjunction in Earth signs, have died in office, either by assassination or natural causes. All, except Ronald Reagan, who was shot but survived.

I have a problem with this theory. First is the fact that Reagan survived. Did the cycle suddenly end in 1980? Some astrologers say it was because the Grand Conjunction occurred in an air sign that Reagan was not killed—not a very convincing reason. If a Jupiter-Saturn conjunction has the power to kill a president, what difference would it make what sign it happens in? That's never explained.

Nevertheless, many astrologers claim it may happen again with President George W. Bush. Some point to November's aspects as possible indicators of the event. To back up their belief, they point to the fact that Saturn is currently straddling the Sun in both the chart of the U.S. and the president's chart. Bush and the U.S. were both "born" with Cancer Suns just a degree apart from each other. Saturn is the planet that brings problems. The last time this conjunction occurred was in 1975 during the fall of Saigon when the U.S. pulled out of Vietnam. Other troubling transits include Pluto's upcoming opposition to the U.S. Mars and the opposition of Mars to Bush's natal Mars. Both these transits indicate potential violence. You could go on and on with the transits, progressions and solar return aspects indicating trouble for the president.

Is an assassination attempt during this period really likely? In my opinion, no more likely than at any other time. If prediction of events like assassinations were that easy, every astrologer would have a hundred percent accuracy rating and the whole world would believe in astrology. History shows us that events like assassinations or disasters like the attack on the World Trade Centers and Pentagon occur with no astrological neon signs announcing their arrival. It would be nice if they did. There may be indicators, but they are usually subtle and far from obvious, and very few astrologers catch them. (Editor's note: The symbolism of Pluto in Sagittarius opposite Saturn in Gemini was just too perfect. Nobody said this pair would bring peace and love. At least three astrologers predicted 9/11 or something very close to it: Jim Shawvan, Robert Zoller and Lynne Palmer.) (Author's response: Sure everyone was concerned about the Saturn-Pluto opposition, but I don't recall anyone predicting that on Sept. 11, 2001 precisely a terror attack of that magnitude was going to occur. If you look at the transits for that day the only major aspects were a conjunction of Mercury to the U.S. Saturn and a conjunction of Jupiter to the U.S. Sun. How ominous was that? Or am I missing something? No big immediate indicators for that day or even month. Just the general Saturn-Pluto tenor of the time.)

Rather than fanning the flames of superstition and creating an atmosphere of fear, it would be more helpful, I think, to interpret the coming astrological configurations in a more realistic manner, because, if anything, that's what these coming weeks and months are going to be all about.

The Grand Illusion

In my article The Grand Illusion I wrote last January (2003) that President Bush would find out in October and November of this year whether his decision to rid the world of Saddam Hussein and his "weapons of mass destruction" was a wise one. When the war began Bush had Jupiter the planet of optimism and Neptune the planet of illusion contacting the Mercury-Pluto conjunction in his chart, creating a “grand illusion" regarding his use of power. Now the President's Sun is feeling the weight of Saturn, the planet of reality and truth, and he is experiencing the difficulties and setbacks associated with a Saturn contact. His rating in public opinion polls now is the lowest it's been since the terrorist attacks of Sept. 11, 2001. An election is coming next year, and his Democratic opponents are using the setbacks in Iraq as ammunition for their campaigns.

Saturn's visit to Bush's and the U.S.'s Sun will last through November, leave, and then return again in June. So it will be around for a while. Saturn is about facing up to the truth. It is the antidote to too much Neptune. So the deeper meaning of this period is the dispelling of illusion and facing reality, and coming clean whether you want to or not.

The November 8 Lunar Eclipse

The November 8 lunar eclipse occurs in the U.S. Twelfth House, the house naturally ruled by Neptune, the planet of illusion. Eclipses bring shocking events, a crisis that leads to revelations concerning matters that previously had been obscured. This eclipse will serve to clear up the illusions and deceptions that may have been perpetrated by some in government concerning the war in Iraq. We're seeing the beginning of that process now, but it will increase in the coming months.

The eclipse squares the U.S. Moon in the Tenth House, indicating it will have an effect on the president, since this house in a nation's chart represents its leader. There could be an impact on the stock market, since the Moon rules the U.S. Second House of money. But an even deeper meaning of the Second House is the values a nation stands for. These values may suddenly become the subject of an agonizing reappraisal. Many may ask where the U.S. is heading and why?

The eclipse occurs in the Tenth House of the president's chart. Again, this indicates that the information coming to light as a result of the eclipse is bound to have an effect on his status, his position in the world. The only significant aspect it makes it to Venus in his First House, which indicates a possible change in his image. Venus is co-ruler of his Tenth House, so there is a third emphasis on his status and position in the world.

The meaning is clear, the President will be forced to face the reality of his past decisions. He may attempt to blame others in his administration for deceptions and providing misleading information, and attempt to purge his cabinet. But that tactic will fail. He needs to come clean and admit mistakes, or face a humiliating defeat in the next election. At that time Bush will be experiencing his second Saturn return, when the planet of responsibility makes its second return to its place in the birth chart. One way or another George W. Bush will be an older, but wiser man.


ABOUT THE AUTHOR

John M. Whalen is freelance writer, astrologer, and editor of a business publication based in Washington, D.C. He writes about film, TV, music and travel for various magazines and newspapers. He contributed a chapter on the life and films of director Sam Peckinpah to the new book, The Astrology of Film: The Interface of Movies, Myth, and Archetype.

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For more information about John Whalen, click here.

Other StarIQ articles by John Whalen:

  • Astro-Zen   9/10/2004
  • Polarized Politics   8/20/2004
  • The Grand Illusion   1/9/2003
  • Two Degrees of Scorpio   10/10/2002
  • Venus Elements   2/14/2002
  • Timothy McVeigh: The Day of Judgment   5/9/2001
  • Kevin Spacey: A Mystery Wrapped in an Enigma   4/9/2001
  • Keanu Reeves' Excellent Adventure   3/8/2001
  • Steven Soderbergh: Putting the Cuffs on Oscar   3/5/2001
  • The Christmas Eclipse: Bringing Your Heart's Desire   12/25/2000
  • Robert DeNiro: Master of Form and Essence   11/18/2000
  • Sylvester Stallone: A Fallen Star, Rising Again?   10/28/2000
  • Yasser, Ehud, Can We Talk?   8/31/2000
  • Alec Guinness: Reluctant Jedi   8/19/2000
  • Human Genetics: O Brave New World!   8/16/2000
  • Survivor: Candid Camera Runs Amok   7/8/2000
  • Samuel L. Jackson: Shaft for the New Millennium   7/1/2000
  • Jackie Chan: Fearless Aries with the Comic Touch   6/23/2000
  • Astro-Zen   4/9/2000

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