Mapping Transits to Life – Squares and Oppositions

In an earlier post, I described how to reconcile events with transits, focusing on conjunctions of the transiting planets Jupiter through Pluto to the natal planets and angles.

Saturn’s orbital period is roughly 29 years, which means it does a full transit circle around the horoscope in 29 years, almost everyone (those who live to at least 58) will have a conjunction of transiting Saturn to each of the natal planets twice in their lifetime. But the outer planets have a much longer period. Uranus, for instance, has a period of 84 years, so there is no guarantee it will conjunct every planet once in a lifetime – you need to live to at least 84 for this to happen. As for Neptune and Pluto, their orbital periods are well over 100 years, so no one will see a full transit circle of these planets around the horoscope. Given the rarity of conjunctions made by the transiting outer planets to the natal planets and angles, their squares and oppositions are dramatically more significant.

Let’s revisit Leyla’s transits for Oct 1, 2010 and see what we can find by way or transiting squares and oppositions. Here’s the transit chart:

You will see in the orbs panel on the right that I have chosen to show oppositions and squares, with an orb of 2 degrees. The only aspect that shows up is the opposition of transiting Neptune to the Ascendant. This is nothing new, since Neptune is conjunct the descendant, so it will by necessity be opposite the ascendant.

If we increase the orb to 3 degrees, we see the following:

Transiting Neptune is square the MC. Also, transiting Mars is square Jupiter and the north node. The transits of Mars are not to be ignored, but their impact is memorable years later only if it happened to occur at the same time as the aspect of any of the transits of Saturn through Pluto. In this case, this is indeed true, since Neptune is conjunct the descendant. Mars then acts as a triggering mechanism that brings about an event.

What does this mean? Neptune is very slow moving, so it will be in the same area of the zodiac for a long time. Let’s take a look at the monthly ephemeris for 2010:

Under the Neptune column, we see its position on the 1st of every month in 2010. Notice how it is hovering around 26-27-28 of Aquarius for practically the entire year. So the transit of an outer planet such as Neptune is like a pall that hangs around for a while, and in that period, there will be a trigger that causes an event. Mars is often such a trigger, given its significance of energy and sharpness, that will bring the outer planet transit’s effect into tight focus.

Let’s take a closer look at this Mars. The square that is shown is between Venus and Jupiter. Mars is very close to Venus, but the orb of the square between Mars and Jupiter is just about 4 degrees. Yes, this orb is greater than the chosen limit of 3, but Mars quite fast (covering around 1 degree of the zodiac every 2 months), so it would be within the chosen 3 degree orb in a couple of months.

While the square of Mars to Jupiter would ring some bells, what would be even more telling is the square to the descendant. The descendant is in Aquarius, a fixed sign, so a square to it can happen from either Taurus or Scorpio, which are also in the fixed mode. The monthly ephemeris for 2010 above shows that Mars is not in Taurus at any time in 2010, but it is in Scorpio in the September-October time frame. For an exact square to the descendant, Mars would have to be in 27 degrees of Scorpio, which will happen in October (since by Nov 1, Mars will have moved into Sagittarius).

Let’s zoom in on the daily ephemeris for October 2010:

As you can see, Mars is in the area of 27 degrees of Scorpio on the 24th and 25th of October. Was it right around then that an event came into sharp focus in Leyla’s life, signifying the Neptune-conjunct-descendant implications, as well as Neptune in the 5th house transited by Pluto? With the knowledge of the planets involved in the transits, Leyla would gain a much better awareness of exactly what the deeper meaning was behind those transits at that time. She would thus gain a genuine understanding of how Neptune operates in her chart, and in her life, and can be ready for it when another transit of Neptune comes knocking on the door of another planet or angle.

What about that square of Neptune to the MC? You see that Neptune has already made a square to the MC, when it was at around 24 degrees of Aquarius! So the square shown in the transit chart is in the past. If you glance back at the monthly ephemeris, you can see that Neptune was at 24 degrees of Aquarius in January of 2010, and it would have been approaching that degree (and the square to the MC) in late 2009. So whatever impact this transit had on her status, reputation, career and public life (all MC significations), she would have felt them a year before, in the second half of 2009.

All of this raises the big question: exactly how long does a transit last, and what orbs to choose to effectively analyze the transits of the various planets? I will get into this in a following post.

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