How to interpret a stellium

A stellium is a cluster of three or more planets in the same sign and/or the same house.

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To interpret a stellium, the easy part is to say: "this sign and/or this house are very emphasised in your chart" and taking it from there, talk about all the themes, concerns, personality traits associated with this sign and house. You'll get good results already. A stellium in Capricorn means that the person is an achiever, and will do what it takes to reach their goals.... unless, like with a single planet, the stellium receives powerful conflicting aspects, in which case the interpretation will have to mention the need to adjust consciously the energies and attitudes in order to make the best out of it.

The more difficult bit.... is actually no more difficult than interpreting a whole chart with ten planets placed in various signs and houses and making aspects to one another. You can analyse each planet one after the other, starting with the more personal ones. If the Moon is part of the stellium, start with what the Moon means in this sign and this house. Then, as in most charts, the Moon receives a few aspects, in the case of a stellium it's likely to be a conjunction or two... so take the second most personal planet, or the closest to the Moon according to your taste, and interpret what Moon conjunct this planet means. For instance, if Mercury is there, interpret Moon conjunct Mercury. The interpretation of Moon conjunct Mercury is very similar to Moon in Gemini or Moon in Virgo (check which one of these two signs is the more powerful in the chart). -- The other way round, Mercury conjunct Moon is similar to Mercury in Cancer.. .

At that stage, you start feeling you are about to get an headache, it's time to remember that astrology is a difficult art and that in order to use your intuition, you need to give a break to your intellectual mind; take a few deep breaths; let you brain take the time it needs for its own chemical processes. Stretch your body, look by the window. Put yourself in a relaxed dream mode. Imagine what kind of character a Moon conjunct Mercury in this particular sign and house could be.




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At that stage, there are already too many bits of information for you to be able to process them all consciously. So let your mind process them unconsciously, that's what intuition is. Be ready to get some insights whenever they pop up and to welcome them with gratefulness.

Now carry on. Pick up another planet. Let's say this one is a slower one. If it is conjunct to the Moon and Mercury, then the energy of this slower planet becomes much more personal than it would otherwise be. So invite into your relaxed mind (take another deep breath or two) to remember the meanings of this planet in this sign and house, and also the meanings of this planet conjunct Mercury and the Moon.

At that stage, maybe you will start to find interpretations that are very similar to things you have already found. Let me give you an example to be clear: Suppose your stellium is in Capricorn. You have interpreted Moon in Capricorn, Mercury in Capricorn..... and now your third planet is, let's say Saturn. Moon and Mercury conjunct Saturn in Capricorn, it's like Moon and Mercury in Super Capricorn.... So there is nothing new here, only a more important emphasis on Capricorn.

Take another deep breath and look at the other planets if there are more. Let's say Neptune is here as well, conjunct Moon-Mercury and Saturn. Start with Moon-Neptune - It's like a Moon in Pisces. Another way to think of it is to wonder: what do these two planet energies have in common?

Moon and Neptune are both water, which means sensitivity, imagination, empathy, inspiration... so add these traits as an extra layer to what you have already found. As it is happening in Capricorn in my example, the person is likely to be more particularly sensitive to Capricorn things, to dream of Capricorn stuff... So if Moon-Neptune is romantic, they will cry at the words "happily ever after" because Capricorn loves long term, and whatever resists the assaults of time. If the person is intuitive and psychic, in Capricorn these qualities may be useful to reach their goals..........

Same thing with Mercury......... think of yourself as a writer creating a character. There are several facets to its personality. It doesn't has to be all perfectly integrated, there are just several facets.


At that stage, well I don't want to tell you what to do, as we all have to find out what works for us, but if I don't have a gardening job to go to, I may go for a walk and let myself daydream, or just forget and let the subconscious work on its own.

Sometimes, just looking somewhere else gives the Great Spirit - the opportunity to show you something that's just relevant.

Good luck!

Jean-Marc Pierson, astrologer and raconteur

Seeking for the Truth of the ninth house

In the big wide world there are quite a few people who are very keen to give you good advice about how to create the life of your dreams...

They claim to know "The secret"; they want to tell you about the laws of the Universe, they claim they know how to "manifest" anything: love, money, health...

Such people appear for the sake of the ninth house indeed... Not as its best expression but let’s take it from there…

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The human condition is such that we don't really know what life is and how it works, however we want to understand. We want to be able to suffer less and live a happy and fulfilled life instead…

We become truth seekers. We want the fountain of immortality, we want to find the Grail!

We want to know about reality and how to deal with it.

We're ready to travel to the end of the world to find out.

I won't talk much about travels in this article, so I'll quickly mention here that travelling is part of ninth house symbolism, even if we travel for any other reason than a quest for ultimate knowledge - When we travel, we are on our way towards the unknown…

Seeking knowledge and wisdom, we will find beliefs and philosophies. Cultures. Sciences. Foreign countries and traditions. Strange ceremonies and magic beverages.

Other worldviews and customs challenging the validity of ours...

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In the third house, learning was comparatively easy. We could know without a doubt the exact number of bones of a human skeleton (206 for an adult, about 270 at birth, but later some fuse together...) Two plus two were, are, and always will be four. In German a cat is a "Katze" in Spanish a "gato" and in French a "chat".

In the ninth house, things are not that clear. We need explanations: who are we? What's the meaning of life? Did we happen out of the blue just to feel a bit of pleasure and a lot of pain before disappearing back into the void? Is there a God? Do we have free will? Are we guilty, should we be ashamed? If yes, why?

What is reality? What are the laws behind the facts? What can we know?

Science provides a number of answers.... which lead to more questions. Our "worldview" is never a certainty. It is made of limited knowledge and a lot of beliefs...

When I was studying psychology, I came across an article about "Implicit theories of personality". Let me explain: some people give money to charities. We are likely to say that they are "generous". We think that "generosity" is a personality trait. However, according to the social scientist personality traits don't exist:

Someone who behaves with generosity in certain circumstances may not behave generously in other circumstances... Someone can be generous with money but mean with their time. Someone can be generous with the members of their family and not with the local community, or vice versa...

If generosity was a personality trait, like we assume spontaneously when we say that someone IS generous, then this trait should be expressed consistently...

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Our mental representation that personalities are made of characteristic traits is only a gross approximation, if not a complete illusion…

Anyway. This article is not about personality theories, but about the ninth house and the problem of knowledge: everyone of us needs to get an idea of what kind of world we are living in and what kind of beings we are, and it’s complicated!

We mix knowledge and beliefs, opinions and dogmas to create a "map of reality"- our worldview- and we navigate through life according to its indications.

In my own natal chart, Chiron is galloping in the ninth house. The healing journey of my life includes questioning the wounded map. Let me take you on a tour…

A big problem is that we don't have a single and coherent worldview. Instead, we have many fragments.

On a fragment, we may believe that God or the Universe will provide for whatever we need. It's written in the Gospel :"Look for the things of the Heavenly Kingdom and the rest will be added unto you" If you belong to the Christian Faith, these are the words of God and He was not joking.

People belonging to the New Age community say a similar thing, with other words: the Universe will provide…

However, on another fragment of the worldview, it is said that you must work hard to get what you want. You may worship God's words telling you that everything you need will be provided on Sundays, but you go to work on Monday anyway.

On another fragment it is said that the Universe won't provide unless you take the trouble to focus your thoughts in order to attract whatever you desire. The law of attraction seems to me nothing but an alternative way to work hard at making things happen….

...But what if our current reality was already the manifestation of the best possible compromise between all the contradictory things we want? (That's my belief!)

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...On a fragment of our worldview it can be written that sexual desire is bad, and that the more you desire it the further away from real love you are. (Especially if outer beauty feels more attractive than inner beauty, what a shame!) ….

But on another fragment, sexuality is a sacred thing, and all the illustrations accompanying this wonderful statement show only young and beautiful couples about to co-worshipulate...

On a fragment, wisdom says that desires must be contained, otherwise they grow without limits and we become their slaves. On another fragment, our desires are expressions of our true nature and we should honour them…

One thing is sure: if our worldview is not unified and coherent, there must be wrong bits in it.

More often than not, we use the fragment we prefer according to circumstances, and we are not even aware that we have close to no control over the course of our lives...

However those who keep banging into walls may end up giving a sharp look at their inner Guidance System and realise that the mixture of fragmented knowledge and illusions they have about reality make them nothing but fools.

The quest for truth often starts from there…

Jean-Marc Pierson

Death in the eighth house

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The eighth house is full of scary monsters: death, sex, power, ghosts and rivers of money...

Once you've been sucked into this house, only one thing is certain: nothing will ever be the same.

How could it be? It's the house of transformation...

An archetypal expression of the eighth house is puberty. Do you remember? You were a child. If you were a girl you were not especially interested in boys, if you were a boy, girls were not your cup of tea.

You hadn’t hair where I’m thinking. You didn't have breasts or periods… if you were a boy your voice was still high pitched.. You body was a child’s body.

You had various interests, you were quite spontaneous, you didn't mind being silly at the odd moment (or even all the time)

…And suddenly, as suddenly as Hades opening the earth under Persephone’s feet, the hormones shouted: "Game over!"

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Maybe it was not as sudden as I, male, Scorpio with the eighth house in Aquarius claims it to be. It could have happened more gradually... but inexorably anyway.

One day, you would look at a picture of you a few years before and you would think: "this was me..."

It felt weird.

Did you feel regret? Did you realise that you were facing your own death as you looked at this child who was no more? When did you realise that life was not forever for the first time?

In the meantime, you were so excited and scared. You were experimenting your powers of attraction and seduction!

What was your place in the new game? Where you ranking high? Where you appreciated, followed, sought after? Did you dare showing off your brand new me? Did you feel better off dressing up as a flower and disappear in the wallpaper?

This was a very ruthless game for sure. Not everyone was valued equally. Sexual attractiveness knows no political correctness. Cruelty happens. You could win one day and be dumped the next. Shakespeare was everywhere...

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Do you remember? Or has the teenager you were been buried next to the child in the depth of your forgotten memories?

You will die as well. Each time you put a foot or a finger in the eighth house, something dies. Something new comes up. Death is not the end of life you know! The feelings are intense and the uncertainty certain. Sometimes it is wonderful like a new love disturbing all the plans and the daily routines. Sometimes you get rivers of tears going down the drain. Nothing can ever be the same after passing through the house of transformation…

The "eighth house pattern" applies to all the in-between times.

This is not an everyday house like the sixth. You don't wake up every morning with some eighth house business to go about. We die a little bit every day, but we don't notice all the time. It's an underground program.

Another typical case of eight house activity is… what happens just after the seventh house.

You found a partner. This one looks like long term one. One day you find yourselves living in the same space. Your life as an independent single being has definitely come to an end. Now, with your partner, you've got sex and bills to pay together. You share your resources. You put your books on the same shelves. You hang your pictures, posters or your paintings next to one another on the same walls. You count what you can afford together. In the bedroom you exchange bodily fluids, mix your dreams and blend your energies. You see each other naked, physically and emotionally. If you don't, it didn't work as it should have. Intimacy is sharing what usually remains hidden and that’s how you become one.

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Another eighth house crisis may give your freedom back to you one day, but for now, you are creating a new unit, and in the process you may lose big chunks of what you assumed was your personal identity…

In the eighth, the ego dies.




There are other transformations in a human life, some are big and other small...

There are also rivers of money in the eighth house. In the second, we acquire, we accumulate, we save. Big second house money becomes a capital. In the eighth house, money flows.

The eighth is a Water house and money is liquid. Sometimes it flows in and sometimes it flows out.

Sometimes you get some on the way back from the graveyard, along with some communications from the other world. Sometimes someone you once loved to the point of having children with makes you pay, emotionally and financially. Sometimes you go to the bank to borrow some power. Sometimes you pay, or get paid for sex. (Not you, dear reader, another reader).

Money is value, money becomes a symbol of value, emotions are attached to whatever is valued, emotions flow like money, and it's all power.... symbolic logic is a strange logic!

We only have to observe life to see how some threads are intertwined....Death (and the other world, and the occult…), sex, power, money, transformation...




When we interpret eighth house placement, we don't always need to come up with the whole Shakespearean drama though. In many cases, only something associated with these themes and emotional storms will be relevant, thanks God!

...thank you for travelling with me. Hope to see you again, transformed and well alive on another journey!

Jean-Marc Pierson

http://jeanmarcpierson.com

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Once upon a time in the seventh house

If you say "relationship" to an astrologer, they will look straight away at the "house of the other".

Placements in the seventh often seem to describe more accurately your partner(s) than yourself. However, whatever happens in our seventh house is still happening in our own chart!

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You must know the story of the ugly duckling. It's a typically seventh house story. The poor little bird is a survivor. He doesn't know he is a swan. He believes he is a duck, and an ugly one. However, when he sees swans, he feel fascinated by them.

When the swans see the ugly duckling, they see a swan. They approach him. They make him look at his reflection in the water... and…Surprise! He is a swan!

(This was the story I asked my grandmother to tell me again and again when I was two or three year old. I have Saturn followed by Jupiter in my seventh house.)

Others are mirrors. Is this mirror reliable? Sometimes yes and sometime no. Sorry to answer to this question like a Libra. Maybe. To some extent. We need a sense of nuances. We are not in straightforward grounds here…

The famous “law of attraction” says that “like attracts like”... However we don't meet only white swans and pretty fairies in the seventh' fields. Can we tell a woman who is a victim of domestic abuse or sexual violence that she is herself a tormentor who doesn't know herself, like in the ugly duckling story but the other way round?

This would be a horrible thing to say! So, let's accept that things may be a little bit more complicated…



Freud wrote that people without moral standards never develop neurosis. They follow their impulses and they don't end up in the therapist's room. Such people don't have a little red devil on a shoulder and a little white angel on the other, arguing about how you should behave. They have only the little red devil. No inner conflict, no neurosis.

In my view, the little red devil is not evil. He is just the voice of a less evolved version of us. If you put a piece of meat between two dogs, they are likely to fight. They are not evil, they are just dogs. They are lovely. They don't have a little angelic dog on their shoulder telling them they should sacrifice themselves and let the other dog have the meat.

The seventh house is where our inner dogs (or whatever our spirit animals may be) sign a "social contract". We understand that life can only be better if we refrain from behaving like in a "state of nature" and strive for fairness instead. The purpose is to keep the peace and get minimum suffering and maximum happiness for everyone.

So imagine the two dogs of my example. They have agreed that always fighting is not a good life. Now they argue instead. The smaller one thinks that a fair share of a piece of meat is half of it for each, whilst the bigger one claims that fairness consists of giving each a piece that's proportionate to their size - or to their weight. What is fairer? Sharing in proportion of weight or size?

…From now on it will always be possible to split more hair. The archetype behind the seventh house is Libra.

Civilised beings go to court instead of fighting. The seventh house also means lawsuits and court cases. (woof! woof! that's not fair your honour! I'm twice as big, I should get more meat!)

When we get married or decide to associate with a business partner we sign a contract. We want win-win situations. It all happens in the magnificent seventh house.

When we engage in relationships however, we don't discuss all the terms and conditions in advance. Should we? The magic of love may not feel so good if we did.

What is fair? in a relationship, should the partners always tell where they are going and when they will be back to their “significant other”?

Should both partners do the same amount of house chores independently of how much money they contribute to paying the common bills?

If the relationship is a friendship, should the friends be willing to answer the phone or open their door at any time of the day or night if requested?

(Some friendships are one to one partnerships in their own right)

Psychological questions, emotional needs and desires are at stake. If written, the unspoken contracts that partners unconsciously agree on could go like:

"Make me feel safe and I will make you feel special"

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"Boost my ego and I'll boost yours"

"Bring some structure, I'll provide emotional intelligence"

"I'll make you laugh and you'll help me cope with the sad bits"

"I will hit you. This will relieve your in-built guilt and my inner tensions" ….

All kinds of unspoken contracts can exist, but I have a feeling that we are already entering the eighth house... Real life is not as clearly
compartmentalised as in a birth chart. In the seventh house we engage in relationships, in the eighth we deal with the deep emotional stuff. In the ninth, we'll try to understand the meaning of life…

At the beginning of this post, I mentioned the famous "Law of attraction": "Like attracts like". I'm taking issue with the universality of this principle. It seems to me that we can also attract (and feel attracted to) complementarity. If like attracted like and like only, we would all be gay wouldn't we?

Reality must be more nuanced, as usual...

Let's go back to having a little red demon on a shoulder and an angel on the other one. Imagine a woman who is very scared by the little demon. She gives maximum attention and power to the angel, she listens only to the voice who talks about tolerating, sharing, giving, self-sacrificing... She doesn't realise that this angel is not a real angel. It's just a voice dressed up as one. This voice on its own is not fair. The symbol of balance, the scales, must have two sides. The little red demon, spokesman for personal desires and needs is oppressed, suppressed and this is inner abuse. Self abuse.

in good seventh house logic, this inner abuse is likely to manifest as abuse coming from outside. In this way, yes, like attracts like....

Why is this woman so scared by her little demon who only wants her to survive, have some pleasure and be happy? Maybe that's her karma. Maybe, let me insist: MAYBE, she let him talk too loudly in some past life, many thousand of years ago, the angel was the oppressed and suppressed one, and now, her karma is that the scales have tipped, she's going too far the other way. She is abusing herself within and therefore attracts abuse from the outside world. Maybe.

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But maybe, and let me insist again, MAYBE, it is because of a great generosity that she has accepted to share a part of someone’s suffering, not because of karma but because of a will to take some of the pain of another on her and work at healing it. If Christians believe that Jesus could take the sins of the world on him, why not believe that anyone can take a little bit of suffering from someone else on their own shoulders, just to help.

And maybe….. maybe something else.

All I want to say here is that we can't judge because we can't know. One way or another the seventh is a mirror, but this should not be taken in a too simplistic way.

Sometimes we need to know we are a swan. Sometimes we need to rectify something within ourselves, which can be similar, or opposite to what is presented to us by a partner.

in a mirror, your left side becomes your reflection’s right side and vice versa.

…When we look at someone, we see two people in them: one is us, the other is them. When we know who we are, we know who they are...


Jean-Marc Pierson

Do you want to learn more about me or about astrology with me?

Click on my name - Visit the main page of this website - Contact me!

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The witch's broom is in the sixth house

When we were small children, we didn't know much about this brand new world in which we were just born. We would learn doing all sorts of things with our bodies: moving, touching, grabbing, holding, crawling, putting objects into our mouth, walking on our hands and knees...

Have you ever seen a baby dropping an object and being so interested in looking at it falling? It was not simply obvious that things fall at that time. It was a discovery!

We were complete beginners. Before we learned, we didn’t even know that something that our mother would hide from us carried on existing somewhere out of sight!

As we became more acquainted with the ways of this world, we built mental representations of it. We became able to hold the memory of the Teddy Bear in our mind and look for it… (This is called "Object Permanence" in cognitive development)

In the sixth house, analogous to Virgo, we learn the material world, we experiment with our body and we build our mind in the process.

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A long time later we will have built a useful mind for everyday activity, with a whole lot of mental scripts about how things work and how to deal with them.

As adults if we take a broom we know how to handle it. If we go to the restaurant, we follow a sequence of actions and events: pushing the door, walking in, being welcomed by a waiter and asked "how many people?", being shown where to sit, reading the menu... It's all easy because we are following a "script". We started with things falling and objects being permanent, and here we are, ordering food without Mum’s help, thanks to a well functioning mind.

If we had never been to a restaurant before, it would be an adventure, we would not know how to behave and would have to figure it all out. We would feel anxious or excited. We would look stupid or embarrassed. We would hesitate, ask weird questions... as we do in the ninth house when we visit another culture and don’t know the ways.

We have mental scripts for everything we usually do. A professional is someone who has acquired precise mental patterns about how to deal with a specific kind of activity, like repairing the central heating. They also have the necessary tools at hand. You look at the sixth house when you wonder what kind of work is suitable to the person you're reading the chart for. How are their patterns?

Our daily routines follow the same principles. Books with titles like "Seven habits of successful people" could be re titled: "Successful settings for your sixth house". Good habits are very powerful because once a script is written in the mind, we don't need much energy and attention to repeat it day after day. We run on "automatic pilot" and things get done.

For instance, if you're used to put your coat on a hanger each time you come back home, it doesn't cost you much to do it. If your new partner hasn't this script set up in their mind, he is likely to keep irritating you for a long time. You may tell him: "For God's sake, it's not difficult to put your coat on a hanger and your dirty socks in the laundry! Please keep the house where we are living together tidy!"

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In your experience, it's not difficult. But for your partner, it is, because to change his habit of dropping his clothes wherever they fall, he will have to remember to bring his conscious attention to what he is doing in the present moment, stop following his usual script (taking clothes off - dropping them- grabbing a beer) Not following a usual script creates discomfort; our brains want repetition. Then, he will have to consciously hang his coat to the hanger, which is not that much of a big deal I admit, but it will be necessary to repeat the conscious behaviour a number of times before it becomes natural, and after the coat it will be the socks, after the socks, the bed, the broom, the cooking, the shopping, the cleaning, the paperwork... so it may become overwhelming for someone who has not acquired all these good habits to set up all these new mental scripts whilst their partner may not even acknowledge the real effort of mental reprogramming. A well functioning sixth is good for the seventh!

I've read somewhere that in Roman times, the sixth house was the house associated with slavery. It makes sense. A slave does what they are told to do. Whether what's they are doing is good or bad, right or wrong is none of their business, they are serving a master, no more no less. The sixth house serves you. It’s your own inner slave. Let’s say servant.

By extension, the sixth house rules relations between employers and employees, between superiors and inferiors, which include our relations with our pets. For information about your cats and dogs, look at the sixth house!

Do you know the story of the sorcerer apprentice? It's from German folklore. Goethe wrote a poem about it, Paul Dukas made music and Mickey plays the role in Walt Disney's Fantasia. It's a pure sixth house story.

The sorcerer apprentice has a lot of chores to perform, in particular drawing water from a well. He enchants a broom to do the work for him, but the broom, like an efficient sixth house script, keeps doing the the job again and again.. The apprentice chops the broom in many pieces to stop it, but then all the pieces become brooms and keep fetching water again and again... until the master sorcerer comes back and stops it all.

Our habits have the power of these brooms. In the long term, they can make us rich or ruin our health; if not mastered with consciousness and a bit of will power, we become their victims. We move in with someone we love and we end up with a relationship disintegrating over domestic affairs of socks and laundry.

The sixth house is the house of magic. A ritual is a script : a series of actions accompanied with words in a specific order. Every detail counts. If magic is, as I think, the art of giving precise orders to our mind, a ritual starts at the level of foundations: with material elements and our bodies. How our minds will make what we order happen... can be as simple as a modification of our daily habits, or as mysterious as any manifestation of the unconscious, and maybe even the spiritual world will follow, who knows…

As the proverb goes: ""God helps those that help themselves".

Now, if we say prayers or utter positive affirmations with our lips only whilst sending different signals through the way we behave with our bodies, the results we'll get, be them from God, from magical spirits or mere logical consequences of our mindset, will be in accordance with our physical attitudes. Our first language is the language of what we are doing and how. Magic starts with the way we hold the broom.

Once I had the opportunity to look at the chart of a rabbi. This guy was really meant to be a rabbi I think. The Moon was on the MC - The Moon means mother, family and where we belong; to be Jewish is passed on by the mother. He had the Sun in the sixth house. I asked him if he performed a lot of rituals, and of course he did. Mind, body, spirit....

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Our daily routines include what we eat day after day and how we eat it and this has an influence on our health indeed. Our body is the basis of our experience of life, it supports our mind. Here again there are patterns, rhythms, cycles… We are not conscious of it all fortunately. Our metabolism happens without our meddling. Our mind is a baby compared to the complexity of all our bodily functions. As we evolve, we will have to expand our consciousness within as well. Let’s start with a little relaxation. Relax the muscles, listen to your breath. Life is not all about the patterns of the outside world only…

To end this article, I would like to mention another thread of meditation: the common root of the words "organic", "organs", "organism" and "organisation": the Greek word "organon" meaning "tool".

In an organism, for instance in our body, there are many specialised parts, each performing a particular function in the service of the whole. Health is when every part works well. A human society is an organism. Everyone contributes through their work. In a healthy society, wealth is created by all and fairly redistributed to all. Astrology doesn't say if communism is better than capitalism though. In my view, it's more a question of state of mind than political structures.

In an organic society everyone works as a service to the whole, and as a result of working well, every part benefits from the health of the whole.

The healthy mindset is "service".

Jean-Marc Pierson

The show must go on: the fifth house

To introduce you to the fifth house, let me light a firework! The rocket shoots upwards at high speed: I associate this phase with the first house. The energy is like Mars, strong, focused, moving towards a goal.

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At the top of its trajectory, the firework bursts like a flower. The audience cheers. Now the energy is like the Sun, majestic, expressing itself from a centre in all directions... We are in the fifth house.

The fifth house is associated with the element Fire. It is a succedent house. Let me explain some generalities:

There are four angles in a chart, the Ascendant, The MC, or Mid heaven, the highest point a planet can reach in its course through the sky, the Descendant, opposite the Ascendant, and the IC, opposite the Mid heaven.

The four "angular" houses (1st, 4th, 7th and 10th) start with these angles. Traditionally they are considered the most important houses. I disagree with the notion that some houses are more important and other less, however, if we consider that traditionally the first house is the house of self, the fourth the house of home and family, the seventh the house of relationships and the tenth the house of career, we can accept to see them as representing the "pillars" of human life.

A key words for angular houses is "Action".

The succedent houses (2nd, 5th, 8th and 11th) come after the angular ones. They are traditionally considered less powerful than the angular ones. A key word for them could be "stability" or "desire for stability"...

Using fireworks as a metaphor, it's easy to understand: action is taken when the rocket is shot towards the sky, and when it bursts, we live in the present moment, enjoying the outcome. Fireworks don't last for that long, but compared to a rocket shooting upwards, there is a relative stability. The state of tension towards a goal is over when the goal is reached.

The first house shows how we approach reality in an immediate way. We don't "rehearse" in this house. If life is a stage, we are characters in the play from the moment we were born.

However, not everything that exists within reaches the surface and not everything that reaches the surface does so in the most brilliant way...

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When we are in the fifth house, we want to express more of ourselves than just our everyday life persona. . We want our whole and healed self to shine through. We are like the rocket shooting upwards saying: "Wait, there is more to me than just that!"

The fifth house is the house of the Sun. That's a reason why I disagree with the notion that angular houses are the most powerful. It seems to me that the house of the Sun can't be seen as weaker, or of lesser importance, than the house of Mars...

After the succedent houses come the cadent houses, traditionally considered the weakest ones. They are the 3rd, 6th, 9th and 12th houses . A key word for them is "Learning". Maybe they are outwardly weaker...but inwardly stronger. The most spiritually oriented houses, the 9th and the 12th, are cadent houses...

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Let's come back to the fifth house. I was surprised when a beginner to find the house naturally ruled by the Sun, symbol of kingship, power and brilliance, called the house of fun and entertainment.

Traditional astrology gives a list of meanings for every house, but doesn't tell what makes all these meanings coherent.

For the fifth, you get: love life, pleasures, children, education, artistic achievements, games and sports, haphazard gains, speculations and clothing.

Even with "self expression" on your mind, the common thread between the elements of this list is not obvious! Keep this list in mind and follow me through some philosophical musings...

I loved listening to the philosopher Alan Watts explaining that the purpose of life is not more about reaching a goal than the purpose of a piece of music is to reach its end. The pleasure or listening to a piece of music happens as the music is playing, and life, if created by a Great Spirit, eternal, absolute and needing absolutely nothing, can only be a work of art, a creation.

Love then is the only reason.

Suffering may be part of life, but suffering is only intolerable when we are blinded by illusions. In reality, like in art, there are only tensions and resolutions. If we reach the level of consciousness in which we can dissipate the illusions, suffering disappears, we enter Nirvana and we see that life is a ballet. It's a game. It's a piece of music, a theatre, a movie... The show must go on!

When we create, we show who we are because we are creators.

We have been created to the image of the Creator haven't we?

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When we are having fun, when we play like children, we live for the sake of the present moment; when we are in love and love is reciprocated, all we love is what is. Love happens between authentic selves only, authentic selves need to be expressed to be seen and loved, and when it happens, lovers play with each other... Courtship is a love game.

In such moments, life doesn't need a meaning. Life says "I am this", if it says it in Sanskrit it says "Soham", if it takes the appearance of a burning bush it says "I am that I am"

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There is no other meaning to life than life, and life is the Great Spirit's work of art, woven with love (because if he didn't love it, the Great Spirit wouldn't have done it, don't you think so?)

We are the Great Spirit's children, and like the Great Spirit, we are creators and we have children. Our children are somehow our creations, and the other way round, when we create something, we say "It's my baby!" (Creating goes beyond creating works of art. We can create a business, a social event, build a house, design a garden, whatever....)

Educating children consists of being a role model. It's a show and it has better be good! We show the example. We show who we are. The house of learning is the third house. Education is the fifth. If we confuse teaching how to read, write, count and when William the Conqueror won the battle of Hastings with education we are wrong.

Now of course, there are things children should learn, and it happens that the best way to learn is to play. Maria Montessori had incredible results with small children. Four or five year old could learn how to read in three months, without being pressured to do any work. They had letters to play with, and grown up willing to show them what they wanted to know...

You've certainly experienced yourself that when you are having fun doing something, you learn incredibly quickly. You ask someone to show you, you get it, you enjoy!

The connection between clothing and showing is quite obvious. The first house says something about our physical body between other things. We appear with a certain face and body type. In the fifth we can be creative, put on make up, chose a style...

Love, romance, pleasures, shows, art, fun, children, education, clothing... I think I have almost all the main topics. I didn't mention speculation and haphazard gains. They are games.

The fifth house is an ideal house. This world - or our level of consciousness - are not as ideal... yet. We still need to grow. All life may be art, all life may be love, we are far from living on that wavelength.

However, being born with a Sun-Neptune conjunction in this house, let me tell you: that's where we are going. Our ultimate destination is the Sun, away from the shadows....

Jean-Marc Pierson

http://jeanmarcpierson.com 


Secrets of the fourth house

Where are you from? Where do you belong? How about your emotional foundations?

I introduced the first house as being the house of the incarnated self and illustrated this with the symbol of the Russian dolls: the smallest one, at the centre, is the spiritual being; the biggest one is similar to the one at the core, created to its likeness, turning up at the surface to meet the outer world...

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I didn't mention an important detail. The biggest doll has drunk from the Lethe river the waters of oblivion. Our body and our behavioural patterns may be an expression of the truth of who we really are but... we have forgotten. We don't know who on earth we might be.



We are now living in the world of reflections. The Moon is Queen. Matter is Mother. We receive from her, not only our body, shaped in her womb, but everything we need for our survival and well being. Her breast is the great provider. Her attention is guarantee of existence. Around her is a house, a closed and warm space that's a little bit like a bigger womb, and maybe there is a father, a husband who provides for her as she provides for us. Or maybe there is no father, no husband, but a family anyway, grandparents, uncles and aunts, there is always another layer of protective and nurturing cocoon around us and mother... or at least there should be.

Around our family, there may be a village, a city, a nation, possibly a welfare state contributing to the security and protection of mothers and babies; they wrote our name on their registers as soon as we were born.

There is also a culture around us. Maybe we were baptised or went through any other ritual involving water or earth, meaning that we belonged where we belonged…

Ultimately we belong to this earth and we live within the lunar orbit.

As above so below. The Moon reflects the realities of the spiritual world. In the water, images are inverted. In the fourth house, we can still think of our existence as a set of Russian dolls, like in the first house, but now we are the smallest one at the centre; now we don't express our being from inside out, now we are impressed from outside in. We receive all influences from above, from around, and we are incredibly sensitive. Maybe all what comes to us from this outside world in nothing but the lunar echo of what we are within, but we don't know that.

Maybe one day we will study astrology, think poetically, wonder about esoteric laws and suspect that all that there is is only one thing...

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The fourth house is the house of our emotional foundations. If baby feels safe and welcome, he or she is likely to feel so for life. All the impressions of childhood shape our attitudes, our emotions and feelings, our sense of who we are... and without knowing it, we are our parents, our grandparents, our ancestors, the earth they walked on, the sacred place where they are buried, we are what they lived, we are their continuation, we are history.

When the fourth house is activated in a chart, some of the themes associated with it will manifest, whether in our minds/souls or as events.

Someone with the Sun or any planet related to career in the fourth house can become an estate agent and make a living buying and selling properties: It's fourth house business as we grow up in homes. Yes, sometimes interpretations can be as surface level as that!

Working from home is another interpretation of indicators of career in this house... and if this indicator is Mars, it could also mean being a soldier - a warrior dedicated to protect the motherland.

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Another expression of the fourth house can be an interest for history and anything related to our origins, to the past, to our ancestors and traditions. The historian, the story teller, the West African griot, the genealogist, the archeologist have all business in the fourth house. We are the harvest of the past. Where do we come from? Where we once apes jumping from branch to branch high up in trees? Indicators of knowledge (Mercury, Jupiter, the rulers of the third and ninth house) in the fourth house will turn our interests toward the past...

Our origins at not only collective. Our personal origin is our mother, and also our father indeed! We have received our genes from them, half from one, the other half from the other. Traditional astrologers say that the fourth house represent the father and the tenth the mother. Modern astrologers associate houses and signs, and as the 4th sign is Cancer, ruled by the Moon, it's difficult not to see mother in it. I'm pretty sure it's half-half, like in our DNA!

We also receive a whole package of emotional patterns form our family, which may lead us one day in the office of another fourth house worker... the psychologist, or the psycho genealogist. These professions are connected actually with all three watery houses. Exploring the past is more specifically fourth house minded.

As children, we felt before we thought. We imagined and dreamt before we reasoned. We were sensitive before being logical... and we still are!

The fourth house is a most private and intimate house. If you have ever done a guided meditation with a hypnotherapist, maybe he told you to imagine you were climbing down stairs going deep within the earth. A the bottom of the stairs, there was a door, and behind this door, a secret room - your secret place, your secret garden if you prefer it to be a garden... there you are absolutely safe and protected. This inner world is your fourth house.

Nobody has never been as close to you as your mother was.

Jean-Marc Pierson, astrologer

Magic in the third house

In the first house we just are, like the biggest of a series a Russian dolls, showing up in the here and now!

In the second house we get established in the flesh. We suck, we incorporate, we absorb, we possess, we have...

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In the third house we start asking questions. The first questions we ask are mute. They look like big eyes trying to seize the world as if its colours and shapes could be eaten... and in some way, they are. We absorb our environment; we take it all in!

The ears absorb sounds which the mouth will try to reproduce. The first words will be "Mum" and "Dad”

Maybe one day we will go to the ninth house, the house of higher learner, and study linguistics. We will learn that there is the "signifier" and the "signified". The signifier is the sound "Mum" and the signified is the actual Mum.

For now, in the third house, we are learning our first language. As soon as we can say "Mum" it becomes possible to call her when she is looking away, and speak about her in her absence.

From then on, we will live in two parallel worlds, which ideally should be twins: the map and the territory. The world of language will echo the world we touch, ear, feel, see, experiment... In case of discrepancies we will get anxious...or laugh at the good joke! It is now also possible to lie.

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These two worlds will from now on drift apart. A whole new life will colonize the new world. Talking becomes a universe in its own right: it is how human beings relate to one another.

At the same time, we keep exploring, walking on our hands and knees, on our two legs, we grab things and put them into our mouths, we grab words and put them out. We become mobile, deft, skilled, able to run away, able to climb, to crawl, to hide, to move, to laugh at pick a boo!

The third house is an Air house, analog to Gemini, sign of the twins, and with it we learn to live from a distance. In our environment, there are things and people. Mum, Dad... and others. Siblings. The neighbours' children. Schoolmates. At school we will keep perfecting our knowledge of the intellectual map of the world. Reading, writing, counting, reasoning, learning by heart, reciting...

Life is a school, that's why I think schools shouldn't take too much time in the life of children. We imitate, imitate, imitate... Imitating is knowing, little monkeys! That’s how we learn.

Can you do this? Can you walk on your hands? Can you pass the ball? Can you ride a bicycle? Can you hit the target? Can you climb trees? Look how I’m doing…

The psychologist Piaget, in his theory of cognitive development, called the first stage the sensorimotor stage, which means experimenting through our senses and movements. That’s the first steps of all knowledge on earth…

In the universe of language, children know a magic formula, which protects them against the spells that others sometimes cast on them: if someone says you are ugly or stupid, don't let the label stick onto your sensitive fledgling self esteem. Just answer:

What you say is what you are!

This protection is very important, because, Abracadabra, as we speak, we create. The twin universe of language doesn't reflect passively the objective world of experience, it is now taking control, shaping whatever is beyond objectivity. What is beautiful, what is ugly? Who is clever, who is stupid? That and those which are said to be so...

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The power of words and thoughts is so great that we believe in the power of making things appear and disappear in the universe of things form the twin universe of language with incantations and magic formulas.. and it’s even true…to some extent!

I believe that if we hold the two parallel worlds together with integrity, walking the talk and talking the walk so as to keep the twin worlds intertwined, our words have the greatest power.

Sometimes we say that Mercury - ruler of Gemini, natural ruler of this third house - represents the mind. In my view, it represents this side of the mind with uses words and language, names, talks, communicates and reasons logically. The mind is also symbolized by the Moon, as daydreaming or dreaming, feeling moved, using our imagination or conjuring up memories are happening in our minds. Jupiter represent the mind as well, especially when it works in a holistic way and confronts the great philosophical and religious questions which require our mental faculties to stretch beyond common sense, logic and everyday language...

Whatever self came up in the first house and added to self by eating and possessing in the second house is now interacting with the environment in the third house. Here we move, here we speak, here we meet peers, brothers and sisters, neighbours, schoolmates, here we imitate, learn, reason, think, communicate... The self that expresses itself from within, the biggest of the Russian dolls, is now shaped from outside.

As it interacts with it has to adapt to the environment, and I guess all the smaller Russian dolls inside have to adjust within as the process goes along...

Jean-Marc Pierson

http://jeanmarcpierson.com

Have your cake or eat it in the second house

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We appeared in the first house. We are now steeped in the material world, the world of duality. Welcome to the second house! 

When we were born, we didn't have a sense of being a "me", separated from the rest of the world, that is from Mother. It would take about eight months to realise that separation is even possible, which will trigger great anxieties. But I'm already talking about the 8th house here, which is just opposite the second and can be seen as its shadow...

As soon as we are able to see ourselves as a separate entity, it becomes possible, not only to be, but to have. The second house is the house of having.

Having is a kind of relationship. What we have is not us, but it becomes somehow an extension of us. Our "possessive style", what we value (what we deem worth having), how we attract what we desire and how we cling to our possessions is shown in the second house. 

Venus, ruler of Taurus, the second sign, naturally rules this house. 

Some people define themselves only through their possessions. The guy with the impressive car, the platinum credit card and a dazzling blonde hanging to his arm or the shopaholic may have forgotten that "to be" is supposed to happen in the first house in the first place and not entirely in the second...

Wisdom recommends a detached attitude towards material possessions. However, it is not possible to exist in this world without having anything at all. 

When we were born, we had nothing in our pockets, we didn't even have pockets, but we had a mother. She gave us her breast to suck and later on food to eat, cloths to wear, her constant presence and all kinds of things which became "ours": Our teddy bear, our bed, our room, our toys, our shoes, our plate... Hopefully we had a Dad as well. 

Throughout life, we will have to have things and people as well.  The second house is unavoidable. 

Before eating our cake, we must have it. It goes the same way with jacket potatoes or vegan pastas. Once eaten, the food becomes part of us. We will go to the loo in the eighth house, house of letting go, but for now, in the second, we are just adding to who we are by having more.

We will apply this fundamental pattern: having - consuming to a wide variety of things, at many different levels, in many different styles and it will all be symbolised by this house. 



How many different ways to have a cake and eat it can there be? You can take your time or eat it as quickly as possible lest someone else grabs it and eat it instead of you; you can start with the icing - if you consider the icing to be the best bit - or keep it for the end; you can munch slowly and enjoy it sensually, or stuff yourself with as much as possible, just to feel full as quickly as possible; you can eat it with your fingers or have manners and use a little spoon elegantly; you can eat a cake you've baked yourself or only eat cake when someone makes one for you; you can share it or save it for later; you can eat a cake you don't really like just because everyone says this cake is the best you can get; you can sit outside for everyone to see what you're eating and envy you; you can decide that you are above something as trivial as eating cake and pretend you don't care... I leave it to you to connect these different cake eating styles with zodiacal signs and imagine other ways... It's all second house story.

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Traditionally, the second house is called the house of money. 

Money stands for all the things we can have, all the things we may need or desire, all the things we value. The second house is house of values. 

Values are not only material, but also emotional, mental and spiritual. Having a lover is like having emotional food on our plate. We want to eat a lover; at a subtle level of energy, we really do. We absorb their vibes, breathe in their odour, we are hungry of them and them of us. 

What is better than being valued by someone we value to the point of making love together? 

Being desired is good for our self esteem, but we need a certain basis of self esteem for this to happen in the first place. 



The second house is also about self esteem. The more we attribute value to things and people the more we are likely to wonder about our own value. Are we worth having as a daughter or a son, from a parent's point of view? Are we worth having as a friend at school? Are we worth having as a collaborator, business partner, lover, mother, father....? Do we have value?



All the people we have in our lives feed us with their particular way of being. We feed them in return with our own energies. We  get attached. The second house is house of attachments. 

The seventh house, the other house ruled by Venus, is said to be the house of partnerships. The meanings definitely overlap.

Who is worth getting attached to? The beautiful, the compassionate, the funny, the adventurer, the listener, the sweet, the kind, the strong, the clever, the skilful, the reliable, the spiritual...? It depends on what we value more... what do we want to have? What would you buy if you won the lottery?



Our relationship with our body is ambiguous. We talk about it as something we have ( My legs, my nose, my butt, my nostril, my body..) whilst simultaneously identifying with it. 

In the first house, the body is expression of who we are. In the second, it's our most precious possession - the second house says something about our relationship with our body, and our body is our connection to nature... Do we owe the earth or does the earth owes us? 

Following this thread, an interpretation of Jupiter in the second house can be that we are going to be attracted by a kind of faith (Jupiter) connected with nature, like paganism or animism. Something that do not reject the body.

To consider the different aspects of a problem, we can ask the fundamental questions: What? How? Why? Who? When we apply the question "How" to the content of the second house, we learn something about how we manage to get these things or people we value into our lives. 

The second house is also called house of inner resources. What do we have within us that will enable us to get what we need, desire, value? What talents, skills, abilities are there for us to get what we need and want? 


In conclusion, the second house's principle is extremely simple: it is: "to have". Money, self esteem, value, values, body, inner resources...are essential key words. 

This house is also as complex and varied in its expressions as life... We can have material goods, people, skills, gifts, qualities... we can have and be had. What we own.. owns us. Here we get attached. Without attachments, we wouldn't be incarnated.

Let's keep our beginners' spirit open, the study of astrology is an ongoing meditation...

Jean-Marc Pierson Astrologer

http://jeanmarcpierson.com

Metaphysics of the First House

I have often heard that the First House is the house of self....I would rather call it "house of incarnated personality". What's the difference between self and personality?

It seems to me that the ultimate being at the core of everyone, human, plant, animal and even mineral... is no other than the unique universal being, the Great Spirit, the Universe, Allah, the One or whatever you call It... Now, this ONE is dreaming many characters, one of these creatures is you, another is me…

There are two dimensions to these divine characters we are, a self which looks like how God dreamed us, perfect, beautiful and empty like a temple, and the incarnated personality, which is the self wrapped up in a heavy body of flesh and bones, inhabited by instincts, ancestral memories and weighted by karma.... the personality is our self - or soul - trying to express itself in the flesh, but not really succeeding yet...

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It's a work of clay in progress. It's a process of self creation.

This is how I understand self and personality. If the words I'm using have different meanings for you, I hope it won't stop you from seeing the picture. Words are but conventions.

We are Russian dolls. The smallest one at the centre is the eternal same one for everyone. Surrounding it is our soul, made up of many layers like an onion….

The first house is the biggest Russian Doll. It is the house of our incarnated identity. It is the surface of our being, but it's not "just superficial", because it is an expression of what's inside.

Etymologically, expression means "pressing out" and to exist means “to be outside”. The personality is expressed. The creator is at the centre.

We usually associate self expression with the Sun and the fifth house. The Sun symbolises what is inside seeking expression. The first house is how Self is expressed by our very existence. This includes the appearance of our physical body, plus our most spontaneous attitudes and behaviours.

In the fifth house, we seek to enhance this self expression. We want to become more who we really are. Therefore we create, make children, perform, paint, sing, we let our "inner child" play around, fall in love...

There are more than just three Russian Dolls actually - I mentioned God, the soul and the incarnated personality. Actually, clairvoyants describe many layers in our auras.

The physical body, seen by clairvoyants is the smallest one at the centre of wider and more subtle auric bodies, but in the Russian dolls analogy things work the other way round, because our ordinary way to perceive reality is to see the material world as being outside, and we feel the psychic and spiritual dimensions as being inside. At the centre the heart.

We are going about in the world, and we meet other biggest Russian dolls. Sometimes what we see is what we get, and sometimes we can’t guess what's inside. A limit of my metaphor is that the Russian dolls we know are all the same. The biggest one looks just like the smaller ones inside.

In our reality, the challenge of manifesting in the material world is that no expression is perfect. Matter is slow and heavy. Things get a bit blurred and distorted in the process, unless we are saints, enlightened masters or someone like that with a golden halo around the big doll.

To express our spiritual selves is a fight against density, which is Mars' job. Mars is the natural ruler of the first house. Aries, the ram, the sign ruled by Mars, is the symbol of the struggle for expression (pushing out) of the spiritual being at the centre. Sacrificing a ram to God may mean nothing but making the effort….

All the other houses will be nothing but a series of footnotes to this first!

Now, the ego is the idea we have about who we are but the first house is our personality, Others can see it better than we do.

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We can't get off our bike to look at how we push on the pedals. We can't look at our eyes looking. Our appearance is a blind spot. We need others as mirrors, and this is what the 7th house, which is just opposite the first is about.

The First House is the house through which everything comes up. Our behaviour shows, our inner life is partially shown. Our face shows, our feelings and intentions are partially shown. Our persona shows, what we really are is more or less shown. Our body shows, our soul is imperfectly expressed. We should believe appearances - if only we knew how to read them, without being blinded by projections and prejudices.

The Ascendant and the first house also work the other way round: we see the world and others through it, like through tinted glasses. If our Ascendant is pink, the world is pink. We all have a tendency to believe that others think or feel like us haven't we?

(You don't like onions? How come? I LOVE onions!...)

Let me add a level of complexity to the metaphor of the Russian Dolls. Imagine that all the dolls are translucent. Each doll has her own colours and motifs. At the heart/ centre is the Sun, the light giver. There are a few intermediate layers. The rising sign is surface personality. it's really us, and more of what's inside shines through.

If the Ascendant is a Fire or Air sign, what comes from inside will more easily and spontaneously find the way out than if it is a Water or Earth sign, more naturally secretive and introverted. This doesn't mean that Fire or Air are better. All four elements have their role to play, and for some individuals, being less transparent is the right thing at a particular moment of their evolution...

Any planet in the first house, especially if conjunct to the Ascendant, is especially emphasized. Planets that make tight aspects to the Ascendant, especially from the 5th house also get more immediate access to the surface of the being.



Let me suggest a meditation. The Rising sign is the sign that was rising on the Eastern horizon when we were born. Its meaning is associated with the symbol of this cardinal point. East is where the Sun appears in the morning, at the end of the night. Before he was hidden, travelling through the unseen. Now, a new day is starting. A new life, full of promises, a new era!...



I have tried to explain this First House as well as I could, which makes me more acutely aware of the limits of my own understanding. Symbols express deep meanings, they are the language of the Great Mystery, which is so wide and so deep! No explanation will ever be able to dispense you to deepen your own understanding though reflection, daydream and meditation, giving these symbols time and attention, as we do with whoever we love...

Jean-Marc Pierson

For readings, astrology courses or life coaching with astrology, visit http://jeanmarcpierson.com

15. Game of Key Words

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You can play with these key words on your own, or with friends. Take a horoscope. Chose a placement. It can be a planet in a sign, a planet in a house, an aspect between two planets or a sign in a house. 

Look at the lists of key words below and combine them to find interpretations. 

NB: as in life, there will be positive and negative ways to combine energies.

If you need more explanations:

Each planet is associated with a sign and a house: you get the same key words, for instance for the Moon, the sign it rules which is Cancer, and the associated house which is the 4th. 

 Planets on principle represent the energy and are more likely to be expressed with verbs (for instance the Moon cares, nurtures, feels....) when the sign is a style or a mood and can be expressed with adjectives,  adverbs or complements: In Cancer for instance,  a  planet does what it does with sensitivity, in a caring manner, following their intuition.....  

 The house represents an area of life, so the key words would rather relate to the question "where": the fourth house is where you belong which can be home, your family, your village, your country, your room, your personal space, your secret garden. 

 However, this is not a absolute rule and must be applied with great flexibility. 

 Just pick key words, combine them and see what comes up. For instance.... Mars in Cancer.... Active at home, aggressive in imagination, assertive with sensitivity......What else? 

Your turn! 

Key words. 

Moon:  Taking root. childhood - mother - child - home - roots - belonging - country - emotions -imagination - memory - sensitivity - emotional needs - physical needs - care - food - fertility - instinct - psychic - - tradition - the past - secret garden - cycles
 Water - Cancer - 4th House

Sun: To express.  self - higher self - heart - love - romance- ego -pride -self expression - goals - will power - call - father- role model - creativity - authority - king - center of attention -generosity - performance - arts - high standards - luxury - children (as our creations) - education (because teaching is performing and it taking care of our children) 
Fire - Leo - 5th house

Mercury through Gemini:   To know -  mind - communication - talking - trade - adaptation - multiplicity - exchanges - information - messenger - common sense - - intelligence - thinking-  young man, brother - nervous system - lungs -  - speed - school - student - learning - rational mind - mobility - small journeys -  
Air - Gemini - 3rd house

Mercury through Virgo: To improve - practical sense - rational mind - science - professional life - skills - sense of organization - service - chores - critical thinking - work - health - medicine - routine - rhythm - rituals - intestines - details - small animals - 
Earth - Virgo - 6th house

Venus esp. through Libra:  To relate - love - lovers - harmony - balance - art - fashion -couple - relationships - Partnerships - justice - good taste - pleasing -flirting - charming - sympathy - diplomacy - feelings - the other - kindness - hips -kidneys - young women - sister - 
Air - Libra - Seventh house

Venus esp. through Taurus: To have - love - sensuality - attraction - enjoyment - values - money - self worth - pleasure of the senses - attachements - possessions - -throat - voice - nature, gardens, fairies.  

Mars:  To be -. being - ego -assertiveness - persona - energy - courage - fight -agression - action -leader - male desire - lover -knight.  go get it! Passion. Impulsivity sport - competion - initiative - starts - birth - individualism-accidents - muscles -blood -inflamations. 
Fire - Aries - First House

Jupiter. To expand - luck - growth -expansion - organisation - generosity - optimism, abundance - taking risks - olympic games - social integration - laws - moral principles - knowledge - wisdom - authority - faith - great journeys - meeting strangers - big picture - meaning of life - teaching - coherence - unity - a mature man - doctor - bishop - lawyer - expert -liver - religion or spirituality - 
 prayer -god - Fire or Air (here there is an ambiguity as Jupiter is usually considered an Air planet and Sagittarius a Fire sign. Never mind!) Sagittarius - 9th house

Saturn  To achieve - structure - boundaries - limits - fear - long term - resistance - old age - time - restrictions - inhibitions - ambition - efforts - discipline - authority - rigor - austerity - responsibility - social status - reputation -  career - reliability - summit of the mountain - hermit - old man - bones and skin - philosophy - moral principles - duty - stern authority - 
Earth - Capricorn - tenth house
 NB: Strangely enough, the tenth house also signifies "mother" However, if we think of it, our mother is, from the beginning of our life, not only the one who takes care and feeds us, but also the one who gives us structure and limits, punish at times and frustrates our whims...  

Uranus:   To transfigure - hyper mind - plans - future - visions - friends - groups - co operatives - revolutions -institutions -  sudden and unexpected change - insights - break through - break up - intuition - politics - citizenship - ideas - ideals - projects - avant guard - difference - individuality - awakener - eccentric gentlemen - scientist - genius - channeling
Air - Aquarius - 11th house

Neptune:  To transcend - no boundaries - sensitivity - inspiration - mysticism - compassion - empathy - psychic gifts - mediumship - return to unity - ocean - unstability - channeling - charity - art - music - pictures - illusions - dreams - haze - absence - dissolution - addiction - depression - mental health - universality - mystery - hidden things - secrets - spirituality - great trials - 
 Water - Pisces - 12th house

Pluto: To renew- crisis - destruction and regeneration - death - rebirth - sex - instincts - power - tribal law - financial flows - inheritance - reptilian brain - intensity - flair - research - emotional intensity - resistance - minerals - psychic gifts - mediumship (talking with the dead) - detective - thriller - underground - forensic expert - psychoanalyst -

 Jean-Marc Pierson - Astrologer

 

 

14. Neptune

 Imagine. You are a river. You're flowing downwards. Your ego is called "River". There are banks on your sides. Beyond the banks, it's not you. Between the banks, it's you. It's all simple and clear. 

 As you flow, you grow. Sometimes there are islands in the middle of you. You become two arms that re-unite further downstream. You love the feeling! 

 One day, suddenly the banks disappear and you find yourself deprived of identity, swallowed by the ocean.... 

 The consciousness that was thinking "I am a river" panics, panics, panics...and eventually bursts out laughing. There had never been any river. There had always been water.

 Let there be clouds! 

 
I introduced Jupiter as the "Miracle Grow" energy and Saturn as the crystallizing force that gives structure and form to whatever exists. In this metaphorical story, Saturn makes the banks - the limits of the temporary ego.  

 Neptune - the Ocean- makes them disappear... 

 Neptune dissolves. 

 Neptune connects whatever it touches to the Great Mystery. 

 Mystics, poets, musicians, artists, drug addicts, human wrecks and madmen are familiar with Neptune, each one in their own style... 

 Saviors and victims, those who sacrifice and the sacrificed ones are also expressing something of this absolutely confusing energy. 

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 If you had a Christian upbringing as I did, you heard that God loved the world so much that He gave his own son to be sacrificed in order to redeem humanity's sins.

I am not discussing here whether you should believe this or not. I mention it because these are pure Neptunian themes: an absolute love, a sacrifice, a need to redeem, and we understand nothing: If God is almighty and all compassionate, why was all this necessary?

 That's a Mystery...

 Similar themes can be found in other spiritual traditions than Christianity. The necessity of a sacrifice to redeem is an archetype, that is a pattern in the collective psyche. Why is it there? I don't know...

 

 With Uranus we had an idea of God as the Great Watchmaker, the architect of the universe, the One who has a Plan. With Neptune God is Love. God is the Great Spirit, a being we can become intimate with. Neptune is Feeling, mystic ecstasy, transe, alcoholic intoxication... or the craving for it. We want to dissolve, merge, forget... 

 Neptune in a chart doesn't always manifest as love though. Neptune dissolves. Form, structures and boundaries disappear; its effects often make us sigh:  "It's complicated"! 

Neptune conjunct Ascendant, opposition to the Moon and Jupiter, trine Venus...

Neptune conjunct Ascendant, opposition to the Moon and Jupiter, trine Venus...

 If Neptune is strong in your chart, you can be an empath and feel what other people are feeling as if it was your own feelings, Neptune can take you to the psychiatric hospital, because if anything that's going on in the collective unconscious has free access to your little mind, you're mad.

Neptune plugs you into collective feelings. You may feel guilty on behalf of your race or country for what your ancestors have done.

You can feel the trends and be the first to know what next year's fashion will be like.

You can express something of the collective feelings and become a star, like Marilyn Monroe who had Neptune near her Ascendant making quite a few strong aspects... Things were certainly complicated for Marilyn. Who could see her? 

 Whether you're experiencing communion with the Divine, compassion for all beings, fascination for an inspiring but unattainable muse, possession by evil entities or psychotic disintegration, common sense doesn't apply. The ocean is an ocean of pictures and feelings. 

 In all cases, you are hypersensitive, an emotional sponge, intuitive, possibly psychic or medium. You can be a healer, a channel. . 

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Sometimes, Neptune dissolves morality and will power and you lives a dissolute life. I won't go into details, I already feel tempted...
   

 

 

 So let's summarize with a few keywords:

 Dissolve- Disappear - Melt - Merge - 
 Mystic - Communion - Love - Devotion - Hermit - Sacrifice - 
 Feelings - Hyper sensitivity - empath - empathy - 
 Confusion - Illusions - Mirages - Hallucinations -Mental Health
 Muse - Inspiration - Channel - Medium - Psychic skills - Healing gifts - 
 Deception - Betrayal - Escapism - Dissolution-

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 To understand better let's take an example. Suppose Neptune and Mercury are strongly connected in a chart. 

 As Mercury rules our thoughts and communication, the result can be catastrophic and the native completely confused and confusing, impervious to logic and reason, possibly dyslexic, autistic or anything similar.

 The native can also be artistic, holistic and right brain rather than logical and analytical. 

If Mercury finds its way through Neptune, the person can write poetry or play music. 
There may be a great intuition, and the ability to be a channel and pass on messages (Mercury) from Spirit (Neptune). 

 Mercury is a trickster and Neptune is illusion, so this combination can also mean a talented conman... The rest of the chart will give precious indications..

Or maybe Mercury-Neptune will manifest as a barman? Mercury rules trade, and Neptune can be alcohol... The connection with madness, addiction and the need of redemption can be expressed in something as simple as being a bartender sometimes! 

 As you see, there are always many possible ways to express energies, and life will always be more diverse and abundant than all the books and astrology blogs that will ever be written.

When you don't find the answers to your questions, ask Neptune, Uranus or Pluto. Plug in! 

Amy Winehouse. Neptune conjunct Moon and Descendant, aspecting most planets... 

Amy Winehouse. Neptune conjunct Moon and Descendant, aspecting most planets... 

 PS: I didn't talk about Neptune-Venus contacts... The all romantic period is about just that! Listen to Beethoven or Schubert who died almost as young as Amy Winehouse, cry rivers, look for your soul mate, call it twin flame, this other you you only want to be one with... 

Jean-Marc Pierson Astrologer

13. Uranus: Expect the unexpected

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Uranus, Neptune and Pluto are trans personal planets. In the heavens, there are moving very slowly. 

In a birth chart, the quickest something moves the more relevant it is to define someone's unique personality. 

 If you joined a group of people who were all born on the same day as you, all your planets would be in the same signs. Only your Ascendant  would point out at something unique about you among them. 

 The Ascendant - followed by the whole house system - goes around the zodiac in 24 hours. Nothing is quicker. 

 Imagine now that you join a group of people who were born during the same zodiacal month as you. You would have the Sun and almost all the planets in the same signs. Only your Moon and Ascendant (followed by the whole house system) would point out at your unique characteristics in this group... 

 Etc..


 Uranus is a collective planet-energy. It takes  84 years to move through the 12 signs of the zodiac, that is  7 years per sign. When you were at school, you probably all had all Uranus in the same sign... 

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 Now, suppose that something that moves quickly like the Ascendant or a personal planet in your chart points  at Uranus. Suddenly, this background energy comes to the fore in the make up of your personality. 

 The General Principle is: the quick moving points value the slower ones. 
 
 

So what is Uranus?

 I defined Jupiter as a kind of "Miracle Grow" energy, Saturn as a "Crystallizing" energy. 

 Uranus is a "Shake and Change" energy. It works in three phases:  build up of tension - shake and change -  new order

 With Uranus, expect the unexpected. 

 In nature, Uranian energy can express as an earthquake or a thunderstorm. 

 In the animal kingdom, we can see Uranus in the flight of the fly: it changes direction unexpectedly and repeatedly. It's useful to be unpredictable when birds call you lunch. 

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 The platypus or the okapi also look like Uranus at work. They look as if Mother Nature had become a bit crazy and assembled parts belonging to different animals to make a new weird one. 

 In the life of civilizations, Uranus brings Coup d'Etats and Revolutions. In relationships, love at first sight or break ups.

Tension tension tension, shake and change, new order... 

 In the cartoon telling the story of Archimedes's life, one day he's having a bath,  a light bulb suddenly appears above his head and he shouts "Eureka!" 

  Uranus is intuition, insight, break through. 

 Uranus,  like an architect, works on the design.  

 At the level of the plan, you draw, erase, try new things... you can change your mind in the blink of an eye. 
 Uranus is essentially a mental energy. 

 It looks irrational in its workings, however in fact it is more rational than usual. Uranus thinks like a scientist, with a methodology that ignore irrational social codes and customs. 

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 Uranus rules Aquarius, the sign of people who are always prepared to give you ideas, ideas, ideas... visions and ideals. 

 Voltaire (Moon in Aquarius, Uranus conjunct Ascendant)  used to call God the "Great Watchmaker". 

  In the spirit of Neptune, God is Love. 

 In the spirit of Uranus, God is the Architect of the Universe, the Great Mathematician, the One who set the Sun, the planets and the stars into motion... 

 However, Love and Freedom are part of the equations. 
 With Uranus, the Great Mystery we are awakening to is a Universe which works like clockwork AND in which we have free will. 

   (We have free will provided we are conscious enough to use it, so let's wake up!)


   It's time for a few key words: 


  Alternatives - Unexpected - Plans - Future Oriented (a plan is always about the future) - Hopes and Wishes -  Abstract Thinking - Mathematics - Architecture- Freedom - Free Will - Awakening - Consciousness - Ideas and Ideals - Avant guard - Visions- 
 To these we need to add:
 Friendship-  Solidarity- Community - Humanitarian Ideals - Human Society - Individuality - Originality - Rebellion - Independence - Insights -Break up - Electricity - Science - Technology - 

 

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 Similar to the paradox of having Free Will in a Universe that works like clockwork is the paradox of being part of something greater than us (human communities, the human species, Life, the Universe ) and to be at the same time absolutely unique individuals. 


 The process of individuation Jung talks about is what Uranus wants us to achieve: If we integrate all the different aspects of our psyche in a coherent whole, we become unique and conscious individuals... and universal at the same time. 


As long as we remain unconscious, Uranus will shake us until we wake up.  

(Routine routine routine, Shit Hitting the Fan! ... Mindfulness mindfulness mindfulness... )

 

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  Ideally  fully awakened people would not live together conforming to social codes imposed from the outside, but according to their own inner nature. 


 Nobody should have to betray their specialness to conform, everybody would co operate freely and contribute to the common good in their own unique way. 


 Weirdness would be the accepted norm. 

 With such ideal in mind, Uranian people can come across as the most  egocentric, rebel and individualistic of all people, whilst promoting humanitarian ideals such as Freedom, Equality, Fraternity. 

 It's Utopia or Nothing. Uranian people throw spanners in the works. (I am one of those...) 

 
 Let's explore Uranus a little bit more.... 

 If Mercury meets Shake and Change Uranus in your chart.... you can't help but think differently, outside the box and you communicate outside the box as well... The word "idiosyncrasy" was coined to talk about you.  

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 Don't wonder why not everybody gets you. If you're following your own logic rather than the ways people are used to, they won't follow you, even if your logic is more logical than their habits!  

 Don't worry, next century people will agree with you. eventually. 


 Mercury rules studies and Uranus is independent you end up being self taught, and maybe your create a new teaching style..


 Mercury also rules small journeys, and Uranus likes originality, so maybe you're going from A to B walking on the roof tops or on your hands, unless you've got a monocycle... anything unusual can do. 

 Mercury writes and Uranus is a visionary and a social architect. Uranus-Mercury writes a  manifesto. 

 Your nervous system is amazing. Are you always living in a state of trance? 

 ... These few examples about Uranus-Mercury are nothing but a few examples. Life will also be larger and more creative than textbooks, that's why it's important to understand the spirit of each planet energy... 

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  If your Venus meets Uranus, all this nonsense, in the contemporary art museums, it's your fault! 


 You are not necessarily gay. Homosexuality is just one among many possible alternatives to mainstream love.  


 If you have to chose between love and freedom, you can have both because you love freedom..


 With Venus-Uranus you may experience love at first sight, which is the love equivalent of an "Eureka" moment.

  Maybe you keep repeating the pattern of breaking up or being dumped suddenly and unexpectedly?   To break this pattern, your relationship life has to be a permanent revolution... or dedicated to scientific research or manifest anything that will satisfy Uranus, one way or another... 
 

 Here are the charts of a couple dedicated to scientific research: Pierre and Marie Curie. 

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 In Marie's chart, Uranus is dominant because it is conjunct to an angle of the chart, the Descendant.

It is also connected by a grand trine with the Moon and the Sun. This makes Uranian energy extremely emphasized. .

 It is in the 7th house, the house that is naturally ruled by Venus, house of partnership. 

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In Pierre's chart, Uranus seems less important, however it is conjunct to the Sun and half square to Venus.  


 Pluto is another collective planet which is especially appropriate for researchers and very emphasized in both of their charts. 
 
 


 
 

   The only Revolution we Need is a Revolution in Consciousness, People! 

   Have a good life! 

   Jean-Marc Pierson Astrologer

12 Saturn

Jupiter and Saturn can be seen as two faces of the same coin. Called "social planets" they bring about the attitudes, thoughts, values which enable us to be more than mere individuals but members of a society  with its rules, codes, manners, laws.... Beyond human society, Jupiter and Saturn shows us our place in the "Great scheme of things"...  

 If Jupiter expands whatever it touches like a "Miracle Grow" planet, Saturn does the opposite. Saturn contracts, tightens, structures, tests, shrinks, condenses, slows down... 

 At the level of feelings, Jupiter brings about enthusiasm and optimism, and Saturn fear and... say realism! 

 Saturn was called the "Great Malefic" by traditional astrologers. Saturn brings difficulties. Would you wish a child to live a life without difficulties to overcome? We are children of Heaven and Earth. They give us Saturn. We don't like it. We don't have to. 

 When Saturn touches for instance Mercury, our mind may become heavy, stupid and slow. Oysters may have a higher IQ than us; we may feel difficult to communicate, because of a stammer, or dyslexia, or autism, or shyness, our mobility may be reduced... or we may also become very logical, realist, coherent, consistent, serious... At school, children with a square Saturn-Mercury are whether the best or the worst of the class. 

 When Saturn touches the Moon, we may suffer from emotional inhibitions and frustrations... Our mother may have been quite stern, our parents may have been very focused on good manners and behaviors and not very hugging... We may be very self contained.... or an emotionally frustrated mess! 

 There are of course many more possible interpretations to every symbol than the few examples I'm giving here...

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 Symbols are magical doors. They don't always open onto the same scenery, and there is always room for surprise. 

 All places a particular magical door can lead you to have something in common, but it's very difficult to be sure of what this common something exactly is... 

One day Saturn will tell you about skin, bones and joints and another day about boundaries, structures and morality. The next time you open the Saturn door, all you get is a great feeling of fear and inadequacy, and if you're courageous enough to open it again, you may find yourself  at the top of the social ladder, but the day after, you're a hermit...  the day after the day after, you're home, because that's where your responsibilities are, and you're telling the children how to behave:  you say "YOU MUST" or "YOU HAVE TO" and often you say  "NO NO NO!" ... 

 Can you intuit the common something? 

 All we can do with symbols and energies is trying to understand "in spirit".  However, if understanding in spirit is reading "between the lines" without Saturn, there would be no lines!  Saturn wants a proper formulation. 

 Saturn is the energy that brings us down from spirit to the material plane; concrétisation, materialization, crystalisation....  It's all about "taking form"... and keeping it.

 Saturn's Greek name is Chronos, which means time. Time is our limit. We can't do and be everything. We need to make choices, and stick to them. This can feel very frustrating. Men may dream to love all women. That could be a great plan, but in reality, there is not enough time. Each choice, each commitment implies a renouncement... With Saturn, we need to "face reality"... 

 When the potter make pots, the clay is wet and malleable. Then the pot is left to dry and cooked. The form will be fixed once and for all until it's broken;  if the pot we've made is a square pot, it's too late to make it round, if it's round, it's too late to make it square... This is how Saturn works. Real pots, unlike dreams and ideas,  can't be one day round and one day square.... 

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 Saturn rules the stern side of education, which is concerned with molding behaviors. "Sit straight, do your homework, say hello, please, thank you and sorry (even if you are not really sorry) don't lie (unless it's politeness)  don't steal, don't touch your genitals in public, get up early, be on time, respect others" etc etc.... When Saturn becomes excessive, there is nothing left for being emotional or spontaneous, and we end up living in a terrible emotional straitjacket. But without Saturn, nothing in us would be firm enough to stand on our feet... 

 Saturn bring anything that can be painful but necessary. One day the baby has sucked enough milk from mother's breast. Baby's teeth are growing. It's weaning time. These wonderful moments will never happen again. Saturn closes the door and turns the page. Jupiter can keep get us growing....

 

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However, with Saturn, dreams do come true - not all of them, but some of them. Saturn is both frustration and achievement. Saturn can be were we will eventually shine... 

In a birth chart, Saturn shows where we will meet fear, feeling of inferiority, frustrations, obstacles and difficulties, be confronted to the necessity of making choices, put of lot of hard work and learn to deal with reality. Saturn shows where we feel unworthy, incompetent or inadequate.  Saturn shows were are the big obstacles and the big lessons and where we may eventually reach mastery. 


 Saturn in a few keywords... 

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Achievement -Restrictions - Discipline - Frustration - Austerity - Mastery - Morality - Inhibitions - Fear - Feeling of Inadequacy - Achievement - Social Status - Responsibility - Ambition - Career - Summit - Duty - Obligations - Interdictions - Form - Behavior - Long term - Time - Structure - Control - Power - Density - Slowness - Seriousness - Ego - Superego - Contraction - Crystallization - Experience - 

 If I kept only three words they could be:  Restriction - Structure - Ambition

Do your homework now! 

Jean-Marc Pierson Astrologer

11. Jupiter

 Do you know Miracle Grow? That's something you give your plants and, o my God, how they grow, that's amazing ! 

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 This may be the worst of all my metaphors, as Miracle Grow is not an organic product at all! However, to introduce Jupiter, I've found nothing better.

A more traditional picture would have been the cornucopia, the "horn of abundance", which is associated with Zeus-Jupiter as it was originally a horn from Amalthea, the goat who fed Zeus when the future king of the Gods was a child... Whatever you'll get out of it, expect to get plenty! 

 Everything Jupiter touches becomes big. If you have a big ego, add a bit of Jupiter and you'll get a Mega Big Ego. 
If Jupiter touches your Venus and you're a painter, you're likey to paint something big, like, for instance..the Sixtine Chapel... In Michelangelo's chart, there is a tight square between Venus and Jupiter.... 

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If Jupiter touches your Mars, you're not going to be just a mere warrior. You're going to be a Genghis Khan. Ah, maybe I'm exaggerating a little bit. Not everyone with Mars-Jupiter contacts becomes a fierce conqueror of the world, fortunately. 

 If Jupiter touches your Moon, your imagination will take you to there and back. Your memory will be of an elephant, and your emotions an ocean... and maybe you'll get a big stomach as well, as the Moon rules it. 


 If Jupiter touches your Mercury, you'll be clever, you'll see the big picture.  You'll communicate bigger: Mercury speaks and Jupiter does public speaking. Mercury moves around, Jupiter travels the world. Mercury analyses, Jupiter synthesizes. Mercury gather information, Jupiter organizes it in theories, and beyond what can be known by reason, Jupiter believes... Mercury is common sense, Jupiter is philosophy. 


 Jupiter and Mercury both symbolize the mind. What makes Jupiter such a Miracle Grow energy... is in the mind. It's a question of positive attitude, of coherence, of beliefs, of open mindedness...

 To be honest, I don't know whether our inner attitude is entirely responsible for our good or bad luck. What I know for sure is that it's an important factor... 

 

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 If I used verbs to conjured what Jupiter does, a part from "I grow big" I would say:

 I rule, I integrate, I make laws, I know, I guide, I teach, I preach, I public speak, I explore, I discover, I seek for coherence, I seek for meaning, I think. 


The three more important of these key words might be: Integrate, explore, think. 
  
 When Jupiter dresses up, it wears.... the robe and the wig of a magistrate, the square hat and gown of the scholar, the tiara of the pope, the cassock of the clergyman, the blouse of a scientist, the suit of the businessman, I should say business human, the uniform of the general... and these clothing usually go with an appellation: Your honor, Your Holiness, Father or Mother (yes, it's rarer than Father) Sir, General, Doctor... 
 With Jupiter we  have a function. We integrate society. We play our role. In an horoscope, Jupiter tells something about how we do that...

 According to Michel Gauquelin, who did a lot of statistics to prove astrology was nonsense and found out that it was not, Jupiter is prominent in the charts many politicians and actors. Playing a role is what these two categories have in common...

 
 Jupiter is often said to bring good luck. However, luck rarely happens in the form of food falling directly from the sky right into our plate. (I have seen a case, but it's exceptional) 

 If someone integrates society by joining the local football team or charity or going to church, whatever, and proves themselves a good fellow, the soul mate or the dream job may be met in this context, at the Christmas dinner party maybe... With Jupiter we integrate a larger unit and we contribute to the common good. In return we receive opportunities and protection. This is just what social life is about. 

  Some mystics may deal directly with God (which they may call "the Universe") but for most of us, Jupiter's abundance is directly proportional to our social integration. Our social integration is a question of attitude. Maybe the word "attitude" sums it all up. So how is Jupiter in your chart? 

 

 Let's now have a look at the shadow side of this energy... When a planet is "afflicted" in a chart, that is when it receives many tense aspects, the shadow side is likely to be calling for some conscious tweaking... 

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For instance, the story of the tulip mania in the 17th century is a fabulous illustration of Jupiter going wrong. All opponents to unregulated capitalism will agree with the necessity of Saturnian regulation to boundless Jupiterian growth and search for profit.

I love this story, maybe because I'm a gardener. It's the story of all speculative bubbles. Tulips were recently introduced in Dutch Republic and became very fashionable, so fashionable that everyone wanted bulbs. There was more demand than supply so the price of the bulbs went up. Because the price went up, people bought bulbs, not to plant them but to sell them later and make a profit. So more people wanted to buy, and the prices kept going up, more speculators were attracted, so much so that the price of a single bulb reached ten times the annual income of a skilled worker...

At some point, buyers wanted to sell to make their profit, and the more they wanted to sell the less the prices went up, and therefore no one wanted to buy bulbs anymore, and the last buyers were ruined.

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I find this fascinating. Coming back to psychology and astrology, with an afflicted Jupiter, we may lose touch with reality, invest emotionally in our own ego and get it inflated enough to lose touch with reality... 

 Donald Trump, has a retrograde Jupiter conjunct Chiron square Saturn, Mercury and Venus, also trine Sun and sextile Moon. 

 He managed to inflate as much as he could...Here is not the place for a debate about political ideas. I am talking only about the style of the public character. He looks like someone out of proportions to me... 

Jupiter, the planet, is the biggest of all those who revolve around the Sun, and it's all gas. It's a giant hot air balloon! 

 

 So, remember: Jupiter is Growth, Social Integration,  Attitude, Role Playing, Mind,  Quest for Meaning, Wisdom, Knowledge, Philosophy, Enthusiasm, Confidence, Faith, Travel, Exploration... 
 
  
Jean-Marc Pierson Astrologer

10. Pluto

Fucking Hell! ...Excuse my French, I just wanted to introduce Pluto. Profanities provide a simple and efficient way to connect emotionally with the most radical and extreme of all energies! 
 So let's proceed...

 Pluto symbolizes instincts, the power that comes from below, the sexual energy, the  power in the guts. Hades, to call him by his Greek name, is the God of the Underworld. 

 An esoteric teaching tells that human being is a microcosm. We are the universe in miniature. In our bodies, the underworld is under the belt. Gut, sex, anus and all the emotional powers and energies that stem from there... 

 When someone says "I am fucked" it means that they are overpowered. But if someone says "Fuck them!" they mean "My power first!" 

 And "fucking", as you know, also means "having sex"... 

 Isn't is a shame to use the same word to mean having sex or to abuse? Sexuality should be a sacred thing don't you think so? Sex should be an act of love happening between two consenting hearts. But I am speaking like Neptune here, not like Pluto...

 The energy of Neptune connects us with the myth - or nostalgie of a lost innocence, a lost paradise. With Neptune we want to go to heaven. Pluto is Neptune's shadow in the world of below. Pluto is the naked unbearable truth: we are not in heaven. We are fallen angels. We have demons within... We are fucked up! 

 Crude Plutonic language tells us that at the level of wild, unprocessed instincts, sex is not a question of love. It's power. In nature males fight. The winner takes it all. He gets the female, or possibly a whole herd and a territory. Pluto is ruthless.

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  A number of sexual fantasies and erotic games have a lot to do with overpowering or being overpowered... Would you prefer to be blindfolded and attached to the four corners of the bed, or to do it to someone else? Erotic games, when coloured by Pluto, stage stories of power. 

  When human beings express Pluto's energy in its raw state, they abuse, they commit crimes, they kill, rape and plunder like the Vikings of old on a holiday trip in Southern Europa. When civilization fails, we hear stories of rebels in Irak and Syria displaying their enemies' heads on spikes and eating their livers to incorporate their strength. A fundamental key word is "Archaic" or Magic. Possibly Black Magic...

 

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 We are fascinated by Pluto. Pirates are typical Plutonian characters.  Did you love Johnny Depp in Pirates of the Caribbeans? Have you ever dreamed of flying a black flag with skulls and crossbones? Movies are works of art and imagination. The Moon rules imagination, and Venus the arts. Let's check the natal chart of Roman Polanski. His movie "Pirates" is such a masterpiece... Spot on! There is a conjunction Moon - Pluto -Middle of the Sky and Venus forms a sextile to it. As you see, with a strong Pluto energy, you don't turn into a wild beast, you can become a successful film director. He was also convicted for sexual abuse on minor though. 

 In medieval times, there was a custom that allowed the feudal lord the right to sleep with a bride from his fiefdom on the night of her wedding to someone else. It was called the "Droit de Seigneur" and could have been called "Pluto's right"... 
 

  At the center of our brain is a structure neurologists call the "reptilian brain". Its functions are the most basic and vital. At Pluto ground level, we are still crocodiles, lizards, snakes... We are powerful and unconscious. That's scary. That's Pluto. 

 Aggression, survival, instincts, fight or flight, territoriality, life or death situations, and of course sexual drive- the survival of the species - ... That's what Pluto is about, but not only... 


  Before exploring further on, I need to explain a little bit about how symbols work. I have introduced Pluto as an energy, but in fact, "Pluto" is a symbol. What is symbolized is the raw energy I have talked about, and other things. 

 A symbol is a kind of "spiritual brand". On the material plane, a particular brand can sell for instance shoes, trousers, jackets, socks, bags, and have shops on the HIgh Streets  If you get a clue that you are going to get something from this brand.... you don't know whether you'll get a pair of shoes or trousers, or maybe a job in one of their shop! A symbol is a clue. It may refer to many things...

 That's why the art of interpreting an astrological chart is similar to the work of a detective. The placements of the astrological symbols  are clues and it take the talent of a Sherlock Holmes to integrate them into a coherent picture. Elementary Doctor Watson! 

 However, don't worry. Many basic interpretations about the placements of planets in signs and houses work well enough to be accurate in many cases. Just remember that there is much more to any symbol than a few key words to apply automatically and systematically... 

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 I have started this presentation of Pluto talking about raw instincts. I could have started talking about death and rebirth, about shamanism, mediumship or alchemy, about shit or about financial flows, about emotional welding, about the personal and collective unconscious or about evolution... I suggest you remember these key words. 

 Beyond our raw instincts, Pluto symbolizes how we deal with them, what kind of lotus flowers will bloom with their roots in this mud... and all the intermediate states, experiences and trials between the mud and the lotus. 
  
 When Pluto is emphasized in a chart, the individual will have psychological traits associated with these themes: they will have strong instincts, be passionate, discerning, intuitive, maybe psychic, able to confront extreme circumstances, possessive, fascinated by death (and possibly able to communicate with the dead), radical, strong willed, possibly cruel or ruthless, manipulative ................unless the individual can't cope, lives seasons in hell, destroys themselves, goes through depression, needs a psychoanalysis to confront their inner demons... 

   

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  Let's follow a few threads about Plutonian themes... 

   Sex and death have always been linked in the imagination of poets and lovers who would die for a night with each other, die in each other's arms  and survive through their offspring... 

 Pluto, and the sign it rules, Scorpio, are also about the emotional welding of two individuals. Before Scorpio is Libra. Libra is the sign of relationships. The ideal of Libra is being two. This sign emphasizes the necessary compromises, the diplomacy, the good manners, the elegance we need to create harmony between two partners. However, the Plutonian mentality is that we can't cheat with who we are when we are physically and emotionally naked together, perceptive, intuitive, intensely aware and ready to die in the way sperm cells and eggs die when they fuse and become a new being...

 Who would waste such a bliss not being who they really are in the process? Plutonians are always radical. They chose the naked truth over the good manners. 

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  Death means in our experience much more than the end of our own life. There are many symbolic deaths. 

 We can lose someone we love, loss is a kind of death,  we say that something dies within... (Remember "loss" as a key word)

We can also lose anything we are attached to, and among all things, our ego and our pride may be what we cherish most! Pluto might kill the ego and give us an initiation. (Another key word here!) 

 We become the snake who sheds its old skin.. Pluto is crisis, death and rebirth. Pluto destroys the old structures and open new creative ways...

 The irruption of puberty in our lives was a Plutonic time. It happened without asking for permission, our body changed, new and intense emotions appeared, the child we were was gone... 

  In traditional societies, some individuals became. They had to endure difficult initiations, confront the reality of their own death and they became able to travel to the world of spirits, the world of the dead and negotiate with spirits. Pluto can lead there as well. 

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 Pluto and Money. 

 With Venus and Taurus, we want to have money to ensure our material security and enjoy life. For Pluto, money is power. Who gets it controls the world.
 Money is associated with death when we inherit, and with emotional welding when we share our power to the point of opening a joint account. When we borrow to the bank, we borrow power. Then we are indebted, and the bank has the power to take the home  back if we don't pay the mortgage...  The eight house, Scorpio and Pluto speak about money when if flows between people in such ways, as opposed to the money we earn through our own labor, which is symbolized by the second house, Venus and Taurus. 

   Something mysterious about symbols is that opposite coincides. Pluto symbolizes the raw and wild energy and also the mystical work called "alchemy" which consists in turning what's raw and vile into spiritual gold. Pluto is a symbol of our inner transformation. 

  Pluto is purification, transformation and regeneration. The raw sexual energy is but an expression of the vital force coiling like a snake at the base of the spine, the kundalini... 
 Through the process of transmutation, Pluto's energies within us are called to become spiritual ideals with flesh and bones. 

 Power then will mean self mastery. 
 

 I hope you learned something I was happy to share with you about the most fascinating of all energies! .... 

Jean-Marc Pierson Astrologer

 

9. The Sun

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  The Sun symbolizes the centre of our personality, our heart, who we really are.

As the saying goes, "We are not human beings having a spiritual experience, we are spiritual beings having a human experience" 


 The Sun is the spiritual being within. The particular brand of human experience we are having is represented by the sign in which the Sun was at the moment of our birth.


  A Sun sign does not represent a fixed set of personality traits. A Sun sign is rather a "psychological landscape". 

 For instance, saying "I am Capricorn" means something similar to saying "My life path leads to the mountain". 
 In a real mountain, someone can be a climber and someone else a skier. One can be a mountain guide and another a hermit. 
 Among climbers, some are going to be champions and others beginners. Mountain guides may specialize, one will make you discover wildlife, another will take tourists to the summits...

 
 All we can be sure of is that whoever lives in the mountain will have to deal with slopes and a rigourous climate...

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 Have you heard of the concept of family ressemblance, popularized by the philosopher Wittgenstein? 
 Imagine you're looking at a child and say: he has the nose of the family! ... in this family, a number of individuals (but not all!) have this kind of nose... 
 Then you're looking at another child belonging to the same family and you say: he has the eyes of the family...

 Now you look at these two children. One has the typical nose... but not the eyes. The other has the typical eyes... but not the nose. They don't look like each other, but they both belong to the family, without the shadow of a doubt.
 This concept of family ressemblance applies to astrology. If your Sun is in a particular sign, you will express some typical traits of the sign and still you may appear very different from other natives of the same sign. At a deeper level though, you will all have something in common... 
 
I have started this chapter on the Sun by talking about signs! Maybe the reason is that the sun is the source of light. What is lit is not the sun, but the world. When the Sun shines in the zodiac, what we see is not the Sun, but the sign... 


    The Sun symbolizes the spiritual being we are. It is our heart, our self, the divine and creative spark within, whatever this may mean. It's a mystery! 


However the Sun has a big problem, which is that life on earth does not allow easy and spontaneous expression of our authentic self. We were born through the Moon - which is mother, matter (matter, material, mother are words built on the same root). We were born in the matrix!  


 Family, genetics, the influence of our early environments, our physical and emotional needs and conditioning, our past and lineage are symbolized by the Moon... 
 Through the Moon, we were born in the world of Saturn. Saturn means time, limitations, matter, forms, norms, conformity, fears... There is a deep complicity between the Moon and Saturn. A Moon cycle is 29 days, a Saturn cycle is 29 years. The Moon rules Cancer and Saturn rules Capricorn. These two signs are opposed in the zodiac, which means they represent the two poles of the same thing... 

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 Mother is both Moon and Saturn, nurturing through the Moon, imposing rules through Saturn... 
 From then, the Sun, the inner divine spark, the spiritual being at the core of the earthy personality, embarks on an heroic journey. 


 The challenge is:  "Become who you really are"

This quest for authenticity makes us walk on the path represented by the Sun sign. It is the sign of our aspirations. 

 The environment protects, nurtures and conditions. The Sun is our inner guidance, what we want to become whatever our past might have been, our "spiritual instructions" so to speak. Through the Moon we are influenced by the past, through the Sun we are called by a vision of self realization. 

 The Sun symbolizes also the ego. The ego is the temporary compromise between the higher self (who we really are in spirit) and the conditioning imposed by family, society and material conditons... 
  It's ourselves in a state of incomplete integration.
  On its way to become "enlightened" the Sun-ego looks up at role models and seek for ideals to identify with. 


The Sun in the chart tells something about our ideals and role models, and about what we develop to follow them: consciousness and will power. 
 Do you know this principle by the psychologist Emile Coué?:

"When imagination and will power conflict, imagination always wins." 

In astrological terms, this translates as: "When the Moon (imagination) and the Sun conflict, the Moon always wins". 


 Our conscious will power struggles to break free... and the Moon always wins, until our little ego based consciousness understands that it can't grow unless it plays by the rules and surrenders. In other terms, we can't neglect our bodies and emotional needs and thrive as spiritual beings here on earth. 

The potter can't make beautiful pots without surrendering to the nature of clay. We are not here to leave the material world behind, but to shape it according to our vision. This can't be done without respect for the feminine side of life... 
  
 The Sun also symbolizes the father, as the father, for a small child, is the first one who represents "Beyond mother" Anyone who shows the example, introduces to the world beyond the safety cocoon and serves a role model is symbolized by the Sun. 

 

 Until now I have explained what the Sun is about... I hope I was able to be clear enough. Astrology does not bring easy answers to the great metaphysical questions...  


 For now remember a least a few key words: 
 Heart - Spiritual core - Self - Will power - Consciousness- Ideals - Father - Role models - Ego - 

 

After the question "What is it?", I'll now set out to give some answers to the other great question: "How is it?" 
 
 Some personalities are more solar than others.
 Leo is the solar sign, however, other sun signs can also be very solar if the Sun is well aspected, for instance if the Sun is conjunct to an angle of the theme. 

 Like every other planet-energy the Sun can be summarized by a few key verbs.

 The Sun says:


I want - I create - I express myself
If you remember only three key verbs, remember those!


If you're ready for more, the Sun also says:


 I show - I play (we can play like children having fun, or play like a musician playing and instrument or an actor interpreting a role in a play) When we have fun and play, we are who we really are spontaneously... 
I want (as opposed to "I need") 
I love - (True love can only come from the authentic self) 
I educate - I show the example - I lecture - 
I shine - I attract attention - I lead - I reign - I govern - I illuminate - I have fun - I entertain - 

When the Sun appears as a character we will come across:


 - Someone with great vitality and charisma. Anyone with a royal attitude. A king of sorts... 
 - A teacher, a comedian, a musician (the band leader or the soloist) an artist, anyone performing, exhibiting, creating, showing... (possibly showing off) 
- A  father, an educator, a role model. 

- A boss, someone in power, authority figure. 

- A saint, with a solar golden halo behind their head! 

 

 As as lover, a solar individual will give great importance to courtship. Love is a game and the greatest opportunity to value the egos! 


  If your idea of the perfect lover is someone who offers the greatest quality of empathy, the solar person may not be the best choice, unless they have enough water in their chart. The Sun will warm you up, but ask the Moon for deep understanding of what's going on in the secret corners of your soul. 
 

 The Sun gives warmth and light from inside out, its nature is not to be the receiving end. It's Fire, Yang, Masculine energy...
 However, there will be nothing petty in the Solar individual's attitude. You can expect loyalty, support and generosity. 
 Please don't forget that no human being is a pure type. Everyone has the Moon somewhere! An absolutely pure solar type would give everything and receive nothing but praise, like a creator God... 

 

 If the Sun was an animal, of course, it would be a lion. He's powerful, he's beautiful, everyone pays attention: the zebras, the antelopes, the hyenas, the other lions...  whether he sleeps, farts or wanders around, everyone knows what's going on. Paying attention to the strong is wisdom! 

 

Let's now go for a walk in the street and look at the buildings. Which ones are we going to tag Sun? 
 Let's not waste time in the suburbs and head on towards the centre. Here is the big square with all the fountains, the columns and statues! 
 A theater, a gallery, a luxury hotel with people in costumes standing at the door. 
 The goldsmiths, the jewellers get their "Sun" tag. 
 The mansions. The places where people in power are, which are known by their address like Number 10 Downing Street. (In case you haven't guessed, I live in London, UK) 
  A circus, a carnival, a concert hall are Sun (or Leo)things...
 The movies will get a double tag, Leo because there are stars and it's an art, and Pisces because we go there to escape reality and get carried away... 

 

 If the Sun was a music instrument, it would be a  trumpet. If he was a music, he would be something grandiose, like this:

 

 

 


 Now, if the Sun was meeting Uranus, the energy that gets everything and everyone out of the beaten tracks, instead of a trumpet, the Sun would become a saxophone, play something brilliant but in a more surprising way... 


 

 

By contrast, if the Moon was music she would be much more romantic, sensitive, delicate, something sounding like a tearful cuddle by moonlight... 
 

 


 And if the Moon met Uranus and turned jazz, she would still evoke the nocturne life of human emotions... 
 

There are at least two ways to understand life and the symbols of astrology. At the beginning of this post, I was adressing the intellectual side, giving explanations and keywords. This is what Mercury in us wants. However, the intellectual way will never be able to get it all. At some point, we need artists and poets to show and make us feel rather than intellectually understand what life is made of... and this is precisely what the Sun does.
  
 

After Leo, ruled by the Sun, comes Virgo, ruled by Mercury, but I have already talked about Mercury.

 After Virgo comes Libra, ruled by Venus, but I have already written about Venus. 
 Next time, after the world of the bright light of the Sun, I will introduce you to the universe of darkness with Pluto...

 Thank you for your attention! 

Jean-Marc Pierson Astrologer

8. The Moon

The Moon is one of the "Big Three"... 


The Big Three are the Sun, the Moon and the Rising Sign. 
If our personality was a kingdom, the big three would be the three most important people. the Sun would be the King, the Moon the Queen and the Rising Sign would be the Knight- who-interacts-with-the-outside-world-on-their-behalf. 

 Have you heard of the concept of "sub personalities"? Usually, we think of ourselves as one person, which we call "me" ... but what if we were actually more like several people sharing one body?

Have you already had the experience of having a friend who you usually meet for certain activities, and one day, they invite you to their home; there, your friend looks like they have become another person! You are finding out another "facet" of their personality...     
 The energies represented by the planets don't blend seamlessly; we can consider them as sub personalities in their own right. 


  The Sun is the King. It's a male energy; the Moon is the Queen it's a female energy; let's drop immediately our feminist views, or rather let's keep them for the world of people, but not for the world of symbols. 


 The Sun and the Moon are present in everyone's chart, so whatever our gender, we all have our fair share of masculine and feminine energies. Say Yang and Yin if you prefer.

Masculine  or Yang energies are expressed from inside out, they are creative, active, dynamic, self centered. Feminine energies are receptive, reactive or passive, attractive, relationship centered. 


 When we read a chart, we should always start with looking for whether Yang or Yin is dominant. Traditional gender roles have been confusing energies and people. Men used to believe they could express only the Sun and Mars, women were supposed to express only the Moon and Venus, as if all these energies weren't present in everyone's make up... 

 The Moon is our Yin side. Our inside. The Moon is us when we are receptive, when we submit or surrender, when we let go, when we relax, when we relate to others and the environment. (To relate we need to shut up and open to whoever or whatever is not us. That's Yin) 


 The Moon is how we are when we are at home, when we find ourselves in a safe environment, in private, able to express our emotions and be receptive to other people's emotions.

 The Sun by contrast, is how we are when we leave home and shine our own light in the world. The Moon is our most intimate personality, the vulnerable part of us. The Sun is not vulnerable. How could it be? It's all from inside out. No arrow can hit the Sun's heart! 


 The Moon in a birth chart also tells about our own childhood, how we were as a child, how was our mother, or more specifically how was our relationship with our mother when it came to caring and nurturing us. 

  I don't believe that planets represent people. You will often read that the Moon is the mother. To me, the Moon is the function of nurturing. When our mother was forcing us to do things, when she was forbidding or punishing, she was Saturn. When she was the great love of our life, she was Venus; When she was a role model, she was the Sun, when she taught us things she was Jupiter and she she was a rival for our father's attention, she was Mars! ...and When our father was preparing food or telling a story before we slept, he was the Moon. 

  Now that we have grown up (if we have) the Moon represents our "inner child" that is the most vulnerable and sensitive part of us. The Moon in our chart shows how we need to be cared for in what we need to feel safe. 

 The Sun also represents our "inner child" but it's the creative and playful inner child which is symbolized by the Sun, not the emotional one. 

 

 The Moon in a few key verbs:

 If you remember only four, remember: 
 I belong I feel I need I nurture

If you can remember more:

I dream I imagine I remember I am fecund I am pregnant I give birth

I change I go round in cycles

I care I long I howl I attract I react

I feed I eat I share I intuit I absorb... 

I mother I cuddle I smother I embrace... 

 

I like to repeat that everything in life is the expression of the fundamental energies of the zodiac. A great way to learn is to look around and put "energy tags" on things and people... Let's go for a walk in the street. What are we going to label "Moon"? 

 If you feel like being serious about learning, don't read the following straight away. Go for an imaginary walk in a street and search for buildings, things and people to tag "Moon" .... 

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 OK!  here are my answers: 

 First of all, all the private houses get the "Moon" label. That's where families live! 

The grocery shop, the supermarket... where the food is, Moon goes.  (A restaurant would rather have the Venus tag, because we don't need to eat there, it's rather a pleasure, even a luxury. However, it's food, so a little Moon can still be tagged there anyway...) 
The shop called "Everything for the home"... Moon tag! 
The nursery, the playground, where the children are cared for get the Moon label indeed! 

A wedding shop! The Moon wants to belong, the Moon wants to get married. Big Moon tag for the wedding shop! ... along with a Venus tag, as hopefully wedding is a story of love and partnership between two people (Venus) and not just a story of having children for your parents to become grandparents whilst you are dealing with your in laws! 
  
A Honeymoon gets a Venus tag. 

 In the hospital, the nurses get the Moon label. Their job is to care... The hospital itself is tagged Neptune. The doctors get Jupiter and Mercury. (Mercury is the specialist in health. Jupiter is the expert and the VIP) 

 I told you Mercury was associated with the age of 10 or 12, before puberty. Actually Mercury times start as soon as we learn to coordinate our movements, learn to walk and talk etc..  The Moon is associated with our early childhood, when we were just born and lived our most intimate and vulnerable moments. At that time we were mostly soaking in impressions... Our personal unconscious is made of the events and emotional memories we get from these times. 

Me and my Maman!

 The lunar temperament is sensitive, imaginative and impressionable. 
 People with strong Moon energy can even be psychic. 
 
At school, a child with a lot of lunar energy will be easily distracted and even disturbed if the atmosphere is not peaceful enough. They may well be a cry-baby. They will have a lot of imagination and enjoy stories. His or her favorite subject will be history. 

  They will hear "You are too sensitive!" a lot during their lives, unless human beings eventually learn to respect sensitivity.

 When not overwhelmed by family duties, a Moon person will enjoy staying home, cooking and eating good meals, not doing much sitting on the sofa, striking the cat, listening to music, reading or watching TV... 

 If the Moon was an animal... It could be a she wolf, howling at the Moon. The Moon can be wild you know! We may find it hard to believe when contemplating a amorphous being sprawled on the sofa eating tons of chips, but yes there is an deep instinctive wild beast hiding in there... 
 The Moon could be represented by a hen as well. One day I saw a hen followed by ten little chicken, on a farm. A young dog approached. The hen charged the dog and chased it away. I was really impressed by the courage of the hen. 

 Other than that, if the Moon was an animal, it would be a unicorn, a winged horse, a feathered dragon, a kind crocodile in need of affection, a teddy bear, or something like that... a fantasy. A chimera...

 The element associated with the Moon, and with Cancer, the sign it rules, is water. It's all emotions and feelings. Don't try to convince them with logic, kindness works better.  


 Do you get the spirit of the energy? 
 If you remember only a few things... remember: 

Feeling - Mother - Child - Family - Belonging - Imagination - Memory - Emotions - Home - Instinct - Unconscious - Emotional and physical needs - Intimacy - Sensitivity - 
 
More later. Take care! 

 

 Jean-Marc Pierson Astrologer
 
 
 
 

7 Four elements Three qualities Twelve signs.

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Hello there! There are four elements: Fire, Earth, Air and Water and three qualities: Cardinal, Fixed and Mutable.

Four times three are twelve, there are twelve signs in the zodiac. Each sign belongs to an element and expresses a quality...

 

Let's start with the qualities.

 

Everything in life grows, reaches maturity and stability, before declining, disintegrating... and turning into something else.

Do you remember the riddle of the Sphinx in Greek mythology?

"What is the creature that walks on four legs in the morning, two legs at noon and three in the evening?"

The answer is: Man. A human being starts a child, then becomes an adult and eventually an old one. 

The day starts with the morning, reaches an apogee at noon, and declines when it's the evening...

In Hinduism, Brahma creates the world, Vishnu maintains it and Shiva destroys it.

In the zodiac, signs will be Cardinal if their energy is an energy of beginning, Fixed is their energy is an energy of stability and maintenance, and Mutable if the energy is an energy of mutation. 

 

Before combining these qualities with the elements, let's understand the elements! 

 

Let's start with a few key words:

 

Fire is about Spirit, Passion, Intensity, Action. Energy... 

Water is associated with feelings and emotions, dreams, imagination...

Air has a lot to do with thinking and communication. The mind, the intellect, logic, reason...

Earth is the down to Earth element (no surprise here!) Common sense, Pragmatism, life of the body, sensations... 

A usual, symbols mean much more than what can be said with two or three key words. We need to follow them like threads running throughout our lives....

How to know more? Let me give you a few examples. You just met someone really hot. If you say "hot" it's fire. Burning desire is fire as well. You will never talk about "flowing desire" or "compact desire" You need Fire to talk about it.

Then you take action, and in the "heat of the moment"... you make a mistake. It's still Fire. Fire signs are impulsive... A lot of knowledge can be found in language. 

 Cool is not Fire. Someone cool is like a breeze of fresh air...

 If you "float" like in a dream, you're living something of the Water element...

 It's all poetry actually!  

Let's now review the signs in the light of their element and quality. 

Aries is Cardinal Fire, a key word is "Initiative"  It's the energy with which it all starts. Imagine a spark, an ignition, a eruption... Strike a match and light a fire: Here is Aries energy. It's strong, powerful, assertive, dynamic etc... 

Cancer is Cardinal Water, a key word is "Fecundation". Another is "Childhood".  With the energy of this sign, you're likely to start a family. It's all emotional and sensitive like a baby here. Or caring like a mother. Or whimsical like a pregnant woman asking for strawberries in winter... It's the beginning of life. 

Libra is Cardinal Air, a key word could be "Introduction" as in: "Let me introduce you to my friend Charlie, she is single and blah blah blah...) Libra is a sign of social intelligence. All relationships start with Libra energy!

If you have a lot of Libra energy you hesitate a lot before you commit. It's not only because you're scared of making the wrong choice. It's because you love the beginnings. You love charming, dating, being attractive and all that. You don't want the beginning to end. 

Capricorn is Cardinal Earth,  key expressions could be: "Starting at the bottom"..or "Starting from scratch". Ambition is what makes you start... and keep going. 

Leo is Fixed Fire. A key word is Will power: that's what is needed to maintain the action initiated by Aries. Other key words: Creation, Achievement, Honors. Self expression. Performance. Art. Forget about the match box, look at the Sun at Noon, or at the big bonfire. Brilliant, no? 

Scorpio is Fixed Water. This is a little bit ambiguous, as Scorpio is the sign associated with death and transformation. However, Scorpio is also the energy that welds two individuals together. This verse of the Gospel expresses the deepest aspiration of Scorpio and its ultimate take about sexuality:

"So they are no longer two, but one flesh. Therefore what God has joined together, let no one separate.” Matthew 19 -6

...Don't worry I am not preaching! You believe whatever you believe! All I wish is to give you a feel of how Fixed the sign of Scorpio is, as a Water element. Scorpio wants to die in another's arms and fuse. Scorpio wants to live the story of the spermatozoa and the ovule. Scorpio energy makes you want to die to yourself and become one with another. 

 Aquarius is Fixed Air, and oh my God, they have Fixed Ideas and Visions these Aquarians! You can't remain an eccentric for very long without being fixed enough in your own ways..

 Taurus is Fixed Earth. Taurus is the Farmer of the zodiac. Strong and stable. Physically involved with reality. Sensual but not metaphysical... 

 With the Mutable signs, movement resumes, but unlike Cardinal signs, there are no clear goals. That's why Mutable signs are very more adaptable to circumstances.

 Sagittarius is Sacred Fire. Here is the sign of the quest for meaning. Here, the journey is the destination...  After striking a match in Aries and dancing around the bonfire in Leo, put a kettle on the embers and meditate or patronize your fellow human beings with deep wisdom. Or walk on the embers if you can... 

 Pisces is Mutable Water. It's the sign of dissolution of anything than can be dissolved, be it your liver in alcohol or your soul in the Great Mystery.... or simply the boundaries of your own identity.  Pisces merges... Pisces feels what others feel without knowing who is feeling what...

 Gemini is Mutable Air. Gemini people are so adaptable they may forget they have a personal identity. With Gemini energy, you are captivated by the multiplicity of all that exists, things and people. Gemini marvels at diversity. 

 Virgo is Mutable Earth. Here we split hairs and put things away in well labelled little boxes...We make lists. Virgo is the sign of service, not of personal ambition.. Virgo is skilled and useful. The body is useful. Virgo knows about maintaining it in good health... 

These few lines are of course far from saying everything that can be said about the signs.

What I suggest in these "Astrology for Beginners" posts is to go beyond what can be learned reading books or watching videos.

Let's daydream and follow poetically the symbols. Let's them teach us...

 Jean-Marc Pierson

And now... how about a little click here:   Astro Stories

 

6 A few things about Mercury

Mercury, like Venus, rules two signs: Gemini and Virgo.

In this post, I'll introduce you to Mercury. I'll talk about the associated signs and houses in other posts.

I like to think of the planet-energies as our "psychic organs".

Everyone has Mercury in their chart, everyone has one and only one of each planet-energy in their birth chart.

If we were studying anatomy, we would start learning about things that are true for every human being. For instance whatever we may learn about the lungs and the human respiratory system would be valid for anybody. At this level of knowledge we are all the same.

 

 Now, we are also all different. Some people may have a huge respiratory capacity and others suffer from asthma. Similarly, everyone has Mercury in their chart, but mine is in Libra, connected to Venus, Jupiter and Saturn...

 This is why it is important to understand the planets before the signs. They are our psychic organs. Once we understand them, we will know more about what makes us unique looking at what sign and house our planets are in, what aspects they receive etc...

The planets can be summarized by a few key verbs.

Mercury says:

I think- I communicate -

 

If you remember only two key verbs, remember those!

If you're ready for more, Mercury also says:

I speak - I analyse - I imitate - I move - I serve - I pass on the message - I learn - I study - I reason - I read - I write - I trade - I exchange - I walk - I run - I speed up - I drive the car! - I do the DIY - I talk- I lie - I trick - I joke- I sing - I play music - I observe- I classify - I pay attention to details - I multiply - I divide - I count - I adapt - I adjust - I know - I repair - I link - I connect - I go get the info - I explore - I am curious of everything - I heal - I collect - I make lists....

Mercury is our mind! It's also our ability to move.

 

Sometimes Mercury is the monkey mind. Sometimes he is the awakened mind, able to heal, even if it's nothing but placebo effect... When we talk about mind-body connection, we're talking about the magic of Mercury.

Planets can also represent people who appear in our lives. Mercury can represent a sibling, a young person, a peer, a neighbor.

It is  associated with the age of 10 or 12, before puberty. At that age, children are interested in learning and knowing. They may know for instance all the kinds of dinosaurs that once existed, and look at you with pity if you don't know the difference between a Stegosaurus and a Pterodactyl. Later on, when boys become the main focus of girls and vice versa, the dinosaurs will lose their auras of prestige...

Do you get the spirit of Mercury?

At school, a child with a strong Mercury will be... wait a little bit and try to guess before reading the next lines...

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He or she will be good at school indeed, unless (s)he is so clever that (s)he gets bored and distracted.

The Mercury child could become the one that disturbs the class, cracks jokes or plays tricks, whilst being able to give the good answers to the questions of the teacher, which, in his/her mind, entirely justifies the cheeky behavior! He or she can also make a fortune selling sweets to his/her comrades.

When in love the Mercury teenager (or adult... ) will not be the most passionate and faithful, as curiosity for all what exists is his or her main mood.

For the Mercurial individual, feelings are a very interesting subject to observe, their expression are great to imitate in order to make everyone laugh.

The energy of Mercury makes you like things and people, but when you fall in love, it's not Mercury anymore, it's Venus or Mars. Now, when it comes to business of the heart, Mercury can help a lot, as this energy knows how to communicate...

What kind of jobs, what kind of hobbies would a Mercury person more enjoy?

I let you guess this one...

 

If Mercury was an animal, which would it be?

A squirrel maybe. Not a rhinoceros. A rhinoceros would rather make me think of a combination of Mars and Saturn. (Saturn gives the heavy, armored twist to the Martian aggressiveness of the beast). Little birds, swallows, robins... and carrier pigeons indeed are Mercury with animal form. Bees as well...

 

When I was young I read the adventures of Tintin. Do you know him? He is quite Mercurial. He is a reporter, always on the move. You don't see him very interested in women, he loves his best friend, the Captain Haddock and his dog. He is very clever. He is curious of everything. He always find a way to get himself out of the most complicated situations... Mercury is your inner Tintin!

 

Let's now go for a walk in the street and look at the buildings. Which ones are we going to tag Mercury?

The post office is a typical one of course. All the shops will be tagged Mercury as Mercury is a trader.

Yesterday I noticed two shops sitting next to each other: one was a music shop and the other one a wine shop. I was thinking: it's a Neptune spot! Neptune, the planet of Pisces, is relevant to both music (music expresses feelings without words and connects us with other dimensions, or just offer a way to escape reality) and to wine (drink like a fish, it's liquid and also a way to escape reality!) Now both shops deserve the Mercury tag... simply for being are shops.

Mercury is also a musician by the way: you need to be skilled and nimble-fingered to play an instrument..

 

Another shop that expresses Mercury is the stationary shop. Here is all you need to write and do the accountancy. The vet, the pet shop, that's Mercury again. The chemist, the dentist... the bus Garage, and also the bus stops, the metro station, even the Bus and the trains themselves, the pavements and the roads as everything that allows movement and communication is expression of the energy of Mercury. Great journeys are usually associated with Jupiter, the sign Sagittarius and the ninth house, but short trips in the surrounding are ruled by Mercury.

The schools where young people learn lessons and are together with their peers are Mercurial places.

The physiotherapist, the dietetic shop express yet another facet of this multifaceted energy.

In the body, Mercury rules the nervous system. It's all about communication, whether of orders from the brain to the muscles, or information from the organ of the senses to the central nervous system where everything is stored and interconnected...)

 

It also rules the lungs (breathe in, breathe out, exchange with the environment) and the intestines (break down the aliments into smaller constituants and sort out what to keep and what is shit)

What emotions and feelings would you give a "Mercury tag"?

 

What symbols would you associate with Mercury? In particular, what element among the four: Fire, Earth, Air and Water?

 

We could look at life as a double movement. A movement from Source towards the multiplicity of things and beings, and a movement from multiplicity back to source. Mercury expresses the movement towards multiplicity. It turns its back to the Temple and looks at the world. In philosophy, he is all with Aristotle, and probably sarcastic about Plato. Mercury values observation and experimentation over speculation and metaphysics.

 

We know intimately all the energies, as we have been living them since we were born. All we need is to be able to recognize them and differentiate them from the other energies. Recognizing and differentiating are things Mercury does.

 

I leave you here to meditate... If your Mercury is curious, visit the homepage of this website and learn everything you need to know about Astro Stories