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According to the National Interagency Fire Center, wildfires are currently burning over twice as much acreage in the western states as they usually do in an average year. What do the heavens say about these natural catastrophes?

Smokey Can’t Bear It

This year’s wildfire season took a turn for the worse back in May. In early May, the U.S. Forest Service set what was to be a controlled burn in New Mexico. This fire ran out of control and raged over the controversial Los Alamos facility. As a result, governmental involvement, and lack thereof in fire control (not to mention the controversy surrounding the presumably nefarious Los Alamos facility), took a barrage of heavy scrutiny. Now the federal government is under fire regarding its policy, funding and attitude toward prevention of fires and preservation of our natural forests. All this began, oddly, in the state where the original forest fire-fighting icon, Smokey the Bear, lies buried.

Swift Lightning

Most of the wildfires this season started from lightning. Though traditional astrology states that Mars rules lightning, modern astrology links it to Uranus. Uranus, ruler of Aquarius and uncontrolled, wild electrical surges, is now moving through its own sign. This intensifies all the natural associations of the planet to the sign, especially wild electrical storms. Most of the wildfires this season occurred from lightning bolting from thunder clouds that were not bearing rain. Back in May, both Jupiter and Saturn in earthy Taurus formed squares to Uranus in Aquarius. Jupiter supports excess numbers of storms while Saturn suggests dry storms containing rain that evaporates before reaching Earth. Add Aquarian lightning, and it’s a lethal combination.

And why is this? Every eleven years or so the Sun cycles through its own pattern of storms and eruptions that eject energy into space. With the Sun presently at the maximum intensity of this activity, it provides upper-atmosphere stimulation that causes radical shifts in the jet stream. Even Florida, a state assumed to be dripping wet, has been experiencing more than its share of dry storm-initiated fires. A simple, yet intricate pattern of weather assessment can be determined by tracking planetary positions relative to the Sun. And through September, these storm patterns are likely to persist, not letting up until November, when the solar stimulation naturally recedes.

Messing with Mother Nature

Truly, the fire danger, though severe and spanning land equaling more than the combined area of the states of Connecticut and Rhode Island, pales by comparison to recent history. Currently, about 4.5 million acres lie charred and burning. Yet in 1950, we lost over 17.5 million acres of land to wildfire. Since that time, airplanes, helicopters and smoke jumpers have made vast improvements in fire-fighting techniques. In addition, there are now more roads into remote places, providing us both a chance to get away to nature and fire-fighting access. In addition, newer techniques of clearing underbrush, building fire breaks and other manipulations of nature reduce the annual volume of acres lost to fire.

In addition to the effects of Jupiter, Saturn and Uranus, the huge overlaying theme of the time comes from Pluto, which is moving through Sagittarius. Pluto represents the hard truth. Pluto also rules hell. Many of the fire scenes have been compared to Dante’s Inferno by the media. The sign Sagittarius is linked to open, expansive spaces and wildlife. How we treat nature seems to be the consideration. And it’s complicated.

Fires of note are typically categorized by the number of homes destroyed and lives lost. Seldom are fires measured in the tragedy of lost homes for critters and their loss of life. In days of old, fires just exhausted themselves, often finally going out with the first snow. But with the exponential growth rate of people on the planet and the resources it takes to support them, less wild area exists. Thus, when a fire occurs now, it is more likely to affect humans. It must be promptly and vigorously fought.

The federal government cannot properly address this issue. They have neglected nature and cut the budget, despite the allegedly quasi-green administration attitude. If they clear the underbrush and thin trees, purists argue, they tamper with mother nature. With Pluto, the bringer of the fires of Hades, running free in Sagittarius, a fire sign long associated with the great outdoors, government participation in fire fighting, especially “controlled” burns, will come under great scrutiny. With Jupiter opposing Pluto in both September (by direct movement) and October (by retrograde), watch as unexpected and abundant funds (Jupiter) appear for putting out persisting hot spots, fire cleanup and forest reclamation. Pluto ultimately rules budget, tax monies and the power of politics.

Truly, we can do nothing about the effects of mother nature. But with Pluto in Sag’s hard truth, we are compelled to redefine our respect, treatment and relationship with nature. Mother nature talks to us. Are we listening? Can we even hear her whispers?



Philip Sedgwick began his study of astrology in 1969. He is the author of Astrology of Deep Space, Astrology of Transcendence, The Sun at the Center: A Primer of Heliocentric Astrology, The Galactic Ephemeris (a compilation of over 8,300 points in deep space).

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For more information about Philip Sedgwick, click here.

Other StarIQ articles by Philip Sedgwick:

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  • Quaoar   10/11/2002
  • Carly Fiorina: Hewlett Packard's Head Profit   11/22/2000
  • The Boy Scouts: On Our Honor   11/8/2000
  • Hugh Hefner Kisses and Tells   11/3/2000
  • Rumble Under New York   10/24/2000
  • Bias in the Bureau of Indian Affairs   10/10/2000
  • The Wild, Wild Cards   10/5/2000
  • Ralph Nader: Green for the Red, White and Blue   9/14/2000
  • The FAA: Stormy Skies   9/6/2000
  • Whew, That Was Close!   9/1/2000
  • Air Rage   8/23/2000
  • Martin Luther: Ecumenical Evolution   8/13/2000
  • David Wells: Tapping the Wells   8/8/2000
  • Are You Ready for Some Football, Dennis Miller?   8/1/2000
  • Andres Galarraga: The Big Cat is Back   7/25/2000
  • Pitcher Perfect: The Big Unit   7/18/2000
  • Solar Flares   7/17/2000
  • All Stars Rising   7/11/2000
  • Staying Strong   7/4/2000
  • Investing in Bonds (Long Term)   6/27/2000
  • Sara the Tiger Trainer   6/24/2000
  • Nipped by the Bud   6/20/2000
  • Fathers and Sons   6/13/2000
  • Junior   6/6/2000
  • The Bronx Enigma: Derek Jeter   5/30/2000
  • Big Mac   5/23/2000
  • Bypass for the Express   5/16/2000
  • Ila Borders   5/9/2000
  • Swinging Sammy Sosa!   5/2/2000
  • Ripken Can Still Rip   4/25/2000
  • Neon Deion Flickers   4/11/2000
  • Baseball Gets Oriented   4/4/2000
  • A Rose is a Rose   3/28/2000
  • Tony Gwynn: Steady at the Plate   3/21/2000
  • Buz Myers   3/16/2000
  • Strawberry's in a Jam   3/14/2000
  • Off His John Rocker   2/29/2000

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