So there you are, in the form of your celestial namesake asteroid, wandering through the heavens without a care in the cosmos, a smile on your lips and a song in your heart, when blammo! You enter the crosshairs of the Uranus/Pluto square and everything goes haywire!
Such is the effect experienced this summer by those terrestrial unfortunates whose asteroid referents are caught traversing the “hot zone” of violence and turmoil in early-mid degrees of the Cardinal Signs Aries, Cancer, Libra and Capricorn, currently embroiled in the major formative aspect of our times. Of course if you’ve got natal points in this area, you’re also under the Uranus/Pluto gun, but then you’ve had that sneaking suspicion growing for some time that all is not right with the world, and so are somewhat prepared to have your life fall apart.
It’s those wretches who stumble into the trap unprepared that inspire our pity, even if they’re not entirely blameless in their conduct and might be fully deserving of all the cosmos has to dish out. Examples of poor celestial real estate choices abound this summer, with plenty of grist for the PNA (Personal-Named Asteroids) research mill.
Let’s start the ball rolling with NSA secrets leaker Edward Snowden, whose revelations about massive data monitoring by the US government were first published June 6, 2013. The story began a national conversation which is still reverberating, and brings together two classic Uranus/Pluto elements, technology (Uranus) and secrets or spying (Pluto).
When Snowden went public with his information, asteroid Eduarda (#340, for Edward) at 14 Libra opposed Uranus at 11 Aries and squared Pluto at 10 Capricorn retrograde. (Squaring Eduarda was asteroid Russia at 18 Cancer, a bit wide of the U/P square’s influence, but well within orb of Eduarda, and describing the locale of his temporary asylum.) Overnight, Snowden had gone from total anonymity to being perhaps the most sought-after man on the planet, his disclosures having major implications for his own freedom (Uranus) while totally transforming (Pluto) his everyday reality.
On June 25, Texas state senator Wendy Davis made national headlines with her 11-hour filibuster of anti-abortion legislation, successfully delaying its passage (although Governor Rick Perry called a special legislative session two weeks later which enacted the bill). Davis’ slight, almost fragile form, clad in pink sneakers for foot comfort, created an iconic image of (literally) standing up to authority, the ability of the individual (Uranus) to oppose entrenched power (Pluto). When Wendy Davis took to her feet, asteroid Wendy (#2993) at 14 Cancer had also walked right into the Uranus/Pluto square, at 12 Aries and 10 Capricorn, with asteroid Texas (#35352) right beside her at 13 Cancer.
On June 26, notoriety of a less pleasant variety assailed NFL tight end Aaron Hernandez, arrested and charged with the murder of Odin Lloyd, a friend and semi-pro football player. The New England Patriots player had been involved in brushes with the law before, and is now also being investigated for a double homicide in Boston in July 2012.
Pluto’s connections to murder are obvious here, and Uranus’ natural rulership of Aquarius, governing friends, ties in Odin Lloyd as the victim. At Hernandez’ arrest, asteroid Aaronson (#3277, for Aaron) at 7 Libra was squared Pluto at 10 Capricorn retrograde and opposed Uranus at 12 Aries. Close on their midpoint, and in semisquare to each, was asteroid Odin (#3989) at 22 Aquarius, also in exact sesquiquadrate (135 degrees) to Aaronson. Asteroid Hernandez (#19079) at 11 Scorpio also tied to the square, sextile Pluto and inconjunct Uranus.
The July 3 deposition of Egyptian president Mohamed Morsi reflects another facet of the Uranus/Pluto square, that of revolutionary regime change. Following massive street protests against Morsi’s policies, the Egyptian army stepped in and removed him from office, just a year after his election.
The most direct PNA involvement here is actually not of the day, but from the establishment of Morsi’s government the year before. With its Sun at 9 Cancer, Morsi’s regime was born of revolution, in tight square to Uranus and Pluto at 8 Aries and Capricorn, and died of the same, when the Sun came back to that area and reactivated the square from 11 Cancer, with Uranus now at 12 Aries and Pluto at 10 Capricorn retrograde.
When Morsi was inaugurated, asteroid Morse (#8672, named for Samuel Morse, inventor of the telegraph, but standing in here for the Egyptian president) at 13 Cancer was part and parcel both of the Sun of his regime and also of the Uranus/Pluto square, making Morsi himself very vulnerable to its effects.
At his deposition, asteroid Morse tied directly to the square as well, though by less harsh aspects; at 10 Virgo it was exactly trine Pluto and inconjunct Uranus. (Morsi’s (born 8/20/51) natal grouping of TNOs Eris and Typhon with Jupiter at 7, 10 and 13 Aries has also been under the Uranus/Pluto gun the past two years, and shows the pivotal importance of disaffection (Eris) with government policies (Jupiter) both to his rise and his fall, and the stormy (Typhon) politics (Jupiter) which drove both. Natal Uranus at 12 Cancer conjoins the Suns of both his administration and his deposition, cementing the revolutionary nature of these, with transit Uranus exactly squared its natal degree at his fall.)
Sometimes the Uranus/Pluto effect is instantaneous, even if its ramifications are extensive and long-lasting, but at other times there is a protracted interaction, a slow but steady drip-drip of debilitation, confrontation and loss. Senate Minority Leader Mitch McConnell finds himself in a difficult re-election campaign this summer, although the election won’t be held until November 2014.
McConnell is feeling pressure from his right in the form of Tea Party hopeful Matt Bevin, who asserts he is the real conservative in the race, and on his left from likely Democratic challenger Allison Lundergan Grimes, Kentucky’s current Secretary of State.
Throughout the summer McConnell and his Democratic opposite, Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid, have been clashing in increasingly undignified verbal altercations, as asteroid McConnell (#9929) entered the hot zone in early July for a period of six weeks, traversing 4 to 17 Libra, within 5 degrees of one or the other planet in square. Asteroid Mitchella (#1455, for Mitch) also joined in the action from early-mid Cancer for a month, from June 28th through July 29.
Among the most damning incidents of the period was towards the end, when on August 8, McConnell’s campaign manager Jesse Benton, a Libertarian-inclined Ron & Rand Paul enthusiast, was revealed to have described himself as “holding his nose” while working for McConnell’s re-election. Asteroid McConnell at 17 Libra was just moving out of the opposition to Uranus at 12 Aries, but exactly squared Mars (confrontations, campaigns) at 17 Cancer, with asteroid Jessie (# 10464, for Jesse Benton) at 12 Scorpio exactly inconjunct to the planet of disruption and turmoil.
It’s not just the famous or well-placed who can be affected by eponymous asteroid interactions with the square. On July 26, the peaceful quiet of a Hialeah, Florida apartment complex was shattered by gunfire (Uranus rules shootings) and mass carnage (Pluto rules homicide), when Pedro Vargas shot and killed seven after a dispute with neighbors and the complex’s managers.
The Uranus/Pluto square was further exacerbated at the time by Mars’ entry into the ring (Mars ruling violence and attacks), opposing Pluto from 8 Cancer. When the first 911 calls were made at 6 PM local time, Pluto was exactly rising on the 9 Capricorn Ascendant, with Mars just setting on the Descendant, adding additional angular emphasis to the moment. Incredibly, Pluto was accompanied by asteroid Vargas (#29133) at 7 Capricorn, with asteroid Peter (#1716, for Pedro) in trine to Pluto and sextile Mars from 8 Taurus.
Vargas’ nickname in the family was “Albertico”, and asteroid Albert (#719) filled out the Grand Cross from 6 Libra. Jupiter added fuel to the fire, encouraging excess and out-of-proportion responses from 6 Cancer, where it conjoined Mars, opposed Pluto, squared Uranus and exactly squared Albert. Asteroid Icarus, noted for rash, reckless behaviors heedless of the consequences, lent support for the shooting spree from 10 Capricorn, conjoined Pluto/Vargas. [Born 3 October 1970, Vargas’ natal Sun/Uranus conjunction at 10 and 9 Libra, which in itself indicates a volatile, explosive personality, had been stressed repeatedly by the square over the previous year, with transit Pluto exactly squared natal Uranus at the shooting, in which Vargas also died, killed by police.]
On August 5, New York Yankee third baseman Alex Rodriquez was given a whopping 211-game suspension for his use of illegal PEDs, “performance enhancing drugs,” to up his game. Rodriquez is appealing the decision, and can continue to play ball in the interim, but the ruling, which would bar him from baseball through the 2014 season, effectively ends the 38-year-old’s career. Asteroid Alex (#3367) is exactly conjunct Uranus at 12 Aries, denoting the disruption to Rodriquez’ life and career, with transit Mars, ruling sports figures and athletes, an integral part of the square from 15 Cancer. Asteroid Rodriquez (#13760) at 17 Libra fills in the missing leg to create a Grand Cross.
On August 10 came the stunning news of the rescue of Hannah Anderson, taken captive by James DiMaggio a week earlier. DiMaggio, a close family friend, first tortured and killed Hannah’s mother and 8-year-old brother before kidnapping 16-year-old Hannah. The chase led from California to Idaho, where DiMaggio was cornered and killed in a police shoot-out at his campsite.
At first glance the PNA connections to this story, so heavily plutonic with its emphasis on torture, murder and abduction, seem tenuous. What stands out immediately is the dramatic opposition between asteroid DiMaggio (#3767) at 27 Taurus and asteroids James (#2335) and Andersen (#2476, for Anderson) at 29 and 25 Scorpio (a sign ruled by Pluto), which so specifically identify the key players in the story.
Closer inspection reveals that DiMaggio is exactly semisquare to Uranus at 12 Aries, while James and Anderson are within orb of sesquiquadrate. These are both “hard” aspects representing shifting phase relationships between the points involved, and while traditionally considered minor, their inclusion in the phase cycle makes them significantly stronger than benefic aspects like the sextile or trine. Andersen is also semisquare to Pluto, with James exactly novile (a minor 40 degree aspect).
Two stories of local interest in the Philadelphia area which are unlikely to make national news illustrate how pervasive these manifestations of PNAs interacting with the Uranus/Pluto square can be. On August 13, Philadelphia police officer Edward Davies was shot in the abdomen after a chase with an armed suspect following a routine traffic stop. Davies suffered extensive damage, has undergone multiple surgeries (Scorpio/Pluto-ruled), is being kept in an induced coma, and lost a kidney. The suspect, Eric Torres, is a repeat offender who was found to have tens of thousands of dollars’ worth of heroin in his apartment (organized crime also governed by Pluto). On the day of the shooting (Uranus-ruled), asteroid Eric (#4854) at 14 Cancer was squared Uranus at 12 Aries and opposed Pluto at 9 Capricorn retrograde.
Just two days later across the river in New Jersey, another shooting occurred in Trenton, where two police officers were shot on duty; both were seriously injured. Incredibly, the shooter is another Eric! 24-year old Eric McNeil opened fire on two policemen while they were conveying his girlfriend to her home after a domestic dispute (in which he punched and kicked her, and stabbed to death her three-week-old puppy); the officers returned fire, killing McNeil. Asteroid Eric now at 16 Cancer is still within parameters of the square.
Finally, the disaster-that-wasn’t. On August 20, 20-year-old Michael Hill slipped into McNair Elementary School in Decatur, Georgia, behind a staff member who had access to a restricted entrance. Armed with an AR-15 assault rifle, Hill confronted staff and allegedly let off half a dozen rounds before responding officers returned fire, and Hill surrendered. Thankfully, no one was injured. But the intent was clear, and well reflected in the day’s sky.
Asteroid Hill (#1642) exactly opposed Uranus from 12 Libra, with asteroid Michela (#1045, for Michael) at 12 Scorpio, exactly inconjunct the planet ruling shootings. Asteroid Georgia, representing the state in which the incident occurred, joined in the mix from 15 Cancer, squaring Uranus and Hill, forming a loose Grand Cross by broad opposition to Pluto at 9 Capricorn. [Not to be outdone, asteroid McNair (#3354, the name of the elementary school) at 18 Sagittarius was exactly conjoined a pairing of TNO Ixion and centaur Pholus, so very active of late in charts of mass shootings; the potential for disaster in this grouping was extreme.]
It’s definitely been a long, hot summer, especially for those whose celestial namesakes have been flipped like so many hotcakes on the Uranus/Pluto griddle. Next time, pick a quieter vacation spot!