Monthly Archives: January 2015


(By Thomas Gazis)

As we know, not only the individuals but the countries too have a zodiacal sign. Everything born in a particular moment in time bears the quality of that moment. Thus, by knowing the date and time of birth of a country we can determine its natal chart – provided of course we can identify the country’s exact moment of birth! Because, contrary to a human being – the birth of which is evident to the people around it – the countries may have many and different kinds of “births”, some of which are not so evident. Take Greece for example. When was this ancient country really “born”? This turns to be a rather complicated issue!

First of all, Greece is not a country that was born in the last few centuries – as i.e. the U.S.A. It has been there for thousands of years! Thus, its birth is lost in the mist of time. How and when Greece was born turns to be a sort of a mystery. Did the geographical area that corresponds to Greece remain uninhabited for millennia till suddenly a day the “Greeks” jumped over its fences and poured over this southern “offshoot” of the Balkans? Had that – somehow hilarious – event happened, then yes, we could say that Greece was born into a particular moment in time (and our only concern would be then to identify that moment). In ancient times however there was not a single ethnic group called “Greeks”, but various kinshipped “tribes” who in successive periods descended to Greece (the Dorians, Ionians etc.). The gradual amalgamation of all these tribes eventually gave birth to ancient Greece, but that was done gradually over time and not at a unique, specific date. In addition ancient Greece had been mostly a conglomeration of independent city-states and was not a single nation-State, a country that is – as we would call it today.

Of course some very significant and prominent historical events had occurred in the Greek past, out of which we could draw some clues (such as the formation of the “Athenian League” – an almost national institution that came very close to be what we consider today a “country”). But we do not know when exactly the Delian league was officialy formed! And without a specific date we cannot cast a natal chart! We can only speculate and a plausible speculation would be that ancient Greece was much influenced by the sign of Sagittarius. The major ancient Greeks’ deity was Zeus – Jupiter, the archetypal figure that rules the sign of Sagittarius. Maybe that’s a mere coincidence…On the other hand it might say a lot about ancient Greece’s “geist”…

Zeus was the father of all Gods and of all the people. He was very liberated, playful and Jovial (as ancient Greeks themselves were). Moreover, the Greeks were considering the virtue of hospitality – a typically Sagittarian trait – as a supreme one, and people were normally expected to host any stranger they were meeting – as any one of them could be God Jupiter himself, in disguise! Additionally, a unique and unprecedented spirit of freedom and democracy was reigning in ancient Greece, a spirit that was quite rare to its epoch! Not to mention that this ancient country is the cradle of philosophy, a Sagittarian field!

But even if we knew with certainty the zodiacal sign of ancient Greece then a new question would arise: does the sign of a country remain the same as the millennia pass over? I think not! First of all, “everything is flux” as the ancient Greek philosopher Heraclitus stated. The correlation between a nation and the cosmic forces ever changes! On the other hand – if we follow the exact definition of what a “country” is – no “country” has ever managed to survive as an absolutely homogenous entity for thousands of years. Not to mention the fact that the the so called “country” or “nation-State” is actually a contemporary invention! Most of the nation-States, of the countries that we know today have been formed in the 19th or 20th century! There might be some exceptions – because some scholars consider Japan and China as two countries that were formed many centuries ago. But even in such a case a “country” cannot last eternally. Countries do dissolve and then reconstitute, incarnating each time under a different “state” form. What has to do for example today’s Egypt with the Pharaohs’ one? What has to do today’s Greece with the 5th century BC “Golden Century” Greece? Ancient and contemporary Greece are quite different in spirit and essence and consequently their charts should be different!

Modern period

When was contemporary Greece born? In order to find it out we have to wrap back the thread and find out when was the last time that Greece “died” as a free and separate country. Apart a small period in World War II (which was really brief, to alter the essence of Greece or its constitution) the last time that Greece ceased to exist was when the Turks military occupied the country in the 15th century and annexed it to the then forming Ottoman Empire! Subsequently, Greece was reborn – this time as “contemporary Greece” – when the Greeks massively revolt against the Turks and expelled them from their country, in the beginning of the 19th century! So, we know the time period but we still do not have a specific date.

First of all, we must set forth the necessary prerequisites for the formation of a new country – stepping a little bit onto onto the terrain of Political Sciences. The basic premise is that there must be a relative “roofless” nation, which has full «conscience of its entity». This nation must have explicitly expressed its will to become a constitutional country – usually in a geographical area historically related to it. Adverse conditions though (usually the fact that such a nation is subject to another country) might have hampered for a long time the materialization of such a will. Another important parameter to consider is that new countries do not come into being on historically insignificant moments but on the very climax of historical events, after a revolution, an overthrow of centuries old regimes etc. In Greece’s case all of the above features are strongly manifested around 1821, in the year when the Greeks revolted against the Turks, who for 4 whole centuries had militarily occupied Greece and the whole of South – Eastern Europe!

The revolution was allegedly proclaimed (give or take a couple of days) on the 25 March 1821 Old Style (6th of April actual date). So, could this be the date of contemporary Greece’s birth? The answer is no! The revolution of 25 March mostly denotes a revolt of certain important Greek chieftains against the Turks (a revolt that was neither the first nor the unique) and not the very establishment of the Greek State. This is made clear by a document issued by certain delegates from all over Greece who met at Epidaurus, 9 months after the beginning of the revolution. Almost in an apologetic tone they write: «It should not seem strange that we have postponed till now the political “arrangement” of our fatherland, that we have not yet declared our independence and stand as equals in front of the other legitimate nations of the world. Because it was impossible to think about our political existence unless we first ascertained our physical one”! The authors of this declaration sound like they knew astrology! Because no situation can really exist and prosper in our physical dimensions unless it goes through the stabilizing phase of Taurus. And this phase cannot be obtained unless the generating phase of Aries has been completed first! So, the mystery remains. Which is Greece’s birth date?

Some 20 years ago it came to my attention the copy of an old document, that I felt very significant! It was entitled «Declaration of the Political Existence and Independence of the Greek Nation». Let us see what this document says: «In the name of the Holy and Indivisible Trinity, the Greek Nation that in the last four centuries has been under the horrible Turkish rule, unable to bear any more the heavy and unprecedented tyranny, which with huge sacrifices we have finally thrown off, is proclaiming today – through its legitimate delegates here assembled – in front of God and humanity, its political existence and Independence! Epidaurus January 1st 1822».

The Declaration of Independence commemorative plaque at Nea Epidauros

There is no doubt that this declaration constitutes the birth certificate of contemporary Greece! It fulfils all the criteria we set up and unambiguously states the creation of the contemporary country of Greece. The birthday of Greece is on the 13th of January (on the Gregorian calendar. Contemporary Greece is a Capricornian country). You can see Greece’s national horoscope (its natal chart) below:

There is a key expression in this historical declaration that we should emphasize: the one that goes “with huge sacrifices we have finally thrown off”. This expression is telling us a lot about the mental state of the people who signed the Greek declaration of independence. Actually, this very expression reveals a “certainty” from the part of the authors of the declaration, the certainty that for the first time ever in almost 400 years of Turkish occupation the Greeks had begun to take the “upper hand” against their oppressors – the Turks – and they were feeling confident enough to establish a sovereign state! For the first time ever they had achieved that “critical mass” which we might call “a certainty that they could sustain their liberation and independence and establish a sovereign state”. This is a crucial element that plays a key role in the choice of the date January 1, 1822 as the “birthday” of contemporary Greece. You see, a basic argument of those who reject the date January 1, 1822 as the birth date of contemporary Greece is the fact that Greece consisted then by just a fraction of its current territory. This element though I do not consider as crucial as the element of reaching that “critical mass” that triggers the permanent and irreversible “dynamics of liberation, independence and establishment of a state.” And although the USA were annexing territories as far as 1912 (New Mexico and Arizona) and 1959 (Hawai and Alaska) their undisputed National Horoscope is considered the one of July 4th 1776!

If contemporary Greece looses or gains – out of a military conflict – some islet should we cast a new horoscope for Greece? Certainly not, because contemporary Greece was “born” as a nation-state in the historical 1822 National Assembly of Epidaurus (the Greeks reached then the “critical mass” for their liberation, independence and establishment of a nation-state) and not during any eventual loss or recovery of any partial territory. When the holy fathers of the USA signed the Declaration of Independence (4 July 1776), the USA consisted of just 13 eastern states, maybe of the 1/20 of its current territory. Still, the natal horoscope of the USA is considered the one of July 4, 1776 (because it was then when the Americans reached the “critical mass” for their liberation, independence and establishment of a state)!

Cultured astrology is not very much advanced in contemporary Greece and the vast majority of the Greek astrologers (who are surprisingly giving credit to the “highly scientific” methods of the “hearsay” and of the “everybody says so…”) believe that their country was born on the 3rd of February 1830 – when by the 3rd London protocol the major forces of the time (England, France, Russia) RECOGNIZED the independence of contemporary Greece. Essentially, this 3rd London protocol established the “Kingdom of Greece” (imposing on the Greek throne a Geman king!). But a country is not born when some foreign powers decide it – under their own terms – but when its own people will it! Otherwise contemporary Greece should not be considered a sovereign country but a mere protectorate!

By no means the London protocol defines the birth date of Greece. It rather defines the (imposed by the foreign powers) “Greek Kingdom”, a rather tributary state that is under the foreign powers suzerainty! Clearly, we are not talking here about a SOVEREIGN state! In addition, monarchy has been constitutionally abolished in Greece since 1974 – by a national referendum. Thus this 3 February 1830 horoscope is not applicable any more – in any way whatsoever. Obviously Nicholas Campion realized this fact because in his book “The Book of World Horoscopes” he states: “Regarding the significance of the international recognition of 3 February 1830, it should be remembered that Greece was already a fully functioning state with its own government, and had been for some years.” Moreover – as you will read below – the political scientists argue that the mere diplomatic recognition of a country by foreign powers does not constitute its foundation act.

And in any case, if Greece was born as a nation-state when the major powers of the epoch decided it then we should apply the same method in the case of the United States. The founding date of this country should be the one in which the major powers of the period recognized the independence of the United States, on the 3rd of September 1783 by the Treaty of Versailles, France. The overwhelming majority of the astrologers world-wide though consider the 4th of July as the birth date of the United States. The September 3rd date is by now an obsolete one, a date that has been forgotten in the drawers of history, a date almost no astrologer ever mentions!

The same goes for all the countries who were liberated from a foreign power, as i.e. Argentina, Chile, Venezuela, Mexico, Cuba etc. etc. Argentina’s horoscope for example results from the date on which the Argentinian colonies unilaterally proclaimed their independence from Spain (on 9 July 1816 that is). Spain and the other powers of the time recognized the independence of Argentina much later (Great Britain in 1825). And yet, the universally accepted “birth” date of Argentina is the July 9, 1816, when the people of Argentina – by their representatives – unilaterally declared their independence!

Why should we then apply in Greece’s similar case not only different but quite opposite criteria? It makes no sense at all! And ultimately, this is a matter of political sciences too, thus let us hear what a Greek professor of Political Sciences (George Dimakopoulos) has to say. He argues: «the Declaration of the Political Existence and Independence of the Greek Nation is the constitutive act of the Greek State, whose foundation, legally and historically has to be regarded as from January 1st, 1822 (old calendar, meaning January 13 on the gregorian calendar). Certain points of view that appoint it to a different day – ultimately connecting it to the diplomatic recognition of the Greek State by foreign powers – not only are contrary to the applied Greek national law, but to the international law too. Because in no way the diplomatic recognition of a State by a foreign power can be made up a constituent part of that State!»!

So, even the political scientists maintain that contemporary Greece was born on January 13th, 1822 (the correct date, on the Gregorian calendar.) Those astrologers who believe that contemporary Greece was “born” on February 3, 1830 instead of January 13, 1822 they are actually maintaining the thesis that a man/woman is not born when s/he comes out the womb of his/her mother but when s/he is baptized!

Greece is NOT an Aquarian country – as very many people believe in Greece – but a Capricornian one! And it has all the characteristics of a Capricornian country. It is an old country, which due to its glorious past it enjoys the respect of all the other countries. It is a conservative country and much materialistic but lacking the material and financial abundance of the other western European countries (should we blame this to Saturn, Greece’s solar ruler – Saturn bringing deprivations and hardships)? It is a State whose public sector – associated with the sign of Capricorn – is over inflated. Out of a population of 11 million in Greece there are almost a million civil servants!

Greece is also a country where social status is extremely important! To realise what I mean just picture this: 2 cars mildly crashing in a Greek street. In several instances, the two Greek drivers would jump out of the car and most probably would yell to each other this line, as a kind of intimidation: «Do you know who I am?» – as if every single Greek were at least a tycoon! This is VERY Capricornian and personally I have never encountered it anywhere else in the world!

The fact is that neither any American, English etc. astrologer possessed a documented date for the birth date of Greece (since it was much harder for them to find the relevant sources). In 1994 I met the famous astrologer Nicholas Campion (at his summer astrology school, in the Greek island of Kos). Campion was writing then his very successful book “Book of World Horoscopes» but had no clear view on Greece’s horoscope. I explained him my findings and he accepted the January 13, 1822 as the birth date of contemporary Greece (he included it in his book).

One more word on Greece’s Ascendant: we know its birthday (13 January 1822) but not the exact time the declaration was pronounced – nor we have some specific information on it! And since we are seeking the Ascendant of Greece my very first thought was “what is the main characteristic that Greece is projecting to the people abroad?” The answers that came to my mind were these: “A maritime and somehow exotic country”. ” A mythological country”!

Well, these two characteristics resonate a lot with the sign of Pisces. And they are rather “projected” by contemporary Greece, as they are not constituting the entirety of its “body” (the people of mainland Greece for example have a different image of their country in their minds, as been a rather continental and mountainous – and that resonates a lot with Capricorn. Actually Greece – partially maritime, partially continental and mountainous country – something that is resonating a lot with Capricorn)! In any case, this hypothesis of a Pisces Ascendant worked well when I tried to rectify some major historical events in the history of Greece. The speculative birth time I am proposing would be around 9:25 AM. The village where the Independence of Greece was proclaimed – and where actually contemporary Greece’s “birth” took place – is Nea Epidavros, close to the famous ancient Epidaurus theater!

Alternative charts

It is worth mentioning that some astrologers favour a more recent birthday for contemporary Greece (placing its birth in the period following the fall of the Greek military junta in 1974). These astrologers are claiming that contemporary Greece’s national horoscope should stem out of the date its last Constitution was drafted (on the 11th June 1975 – after the collapse of the military dictatorship). But how proper is it to study astrologically a country not using its “foundation” horoscope but what actually is the horoscope of a posterior constitutional “amendment”? If somebody studies the 1st January 1822 Constitution s/he will realize that it is essentially as democratic and advanced as the Constitution of 1975. Thus, in 1975 we did not experience a major constitutional shift in regard to the VERY Greek constitution (the constitution upon which Greece was founded on). We just experienced a shift in regard to the imposed by the military junta regime – a regime that lasted just 7 years, not so many to alter the “soul” of Greece and its original constitution.

Some other astrologers (mostly English) are claiming that contemporary Greece’s horoscope should stem out of the moment its first post-dictatorship Prime Minister was sworn in – on the 24th of July 1974. But as I explained before, the seven years military junta did not essentially change either the “soul” or the constitution of Greece. Why should we then consider the July 24, 1974 chart as the “national horoscope” of Greece and not the original January 13, 1822 one? By claiming that either the 1974 or the 1975 chart represents THE National Horoscope of Greece then we are automatically cutting off something like the 90% of contemporary Greek History – four major war periods and a civil war period, historical battles, some brilliant Greek politicians in office, major deeds (the first Olympic games of 1896 i.e.), military coups, almost everything! It’s like claiming that a person is not actually born when s/he comes out of his/her mother’s uterus but when s/he draws his/her pension…

Thomas Gazis
Copyright:Thomas D. Gazis


P.S.  You may also read the relative article “The Greek Declaration of Independence (and the true horosocpe of Greece)



Filed under Greece, Mundane Astrology

“Astro – Mykonos 2001” – International Astrology Conference

After the success of the “Astro-Mykonos 2000” conference, me and my wife decided to repeat the experience and organize a second International Astrological Conference on the Greek island of Mykonos, in the summer of 2001 (8-10 June). As our key speaker we invited the foremost Astrologer, prolific writer and exuberant Noel Tyl. And we also invited the famous French astrologer Elizabeth Teissier.

Elizabeth Teissier & Noel Tyl

Elizabeth Teissier – Noel Tyl


Once more, we worked hard with my wife, taking care of every facet, every issue, every small detail, so that the conference ultimately succeeds! We already had in our favor the precious experience of the “Astro – Mykonos 2000” that we had organized in the previous summer. Plus, it was a major comfort to us the fact that we had the full support of an individual who is a benefactor of Greek Astrology (and an excellent Astrologer him/herself)! I would like to express my gratitude to this person for his/her immense contribution to the introduction of cultured Astrology in Greece! I wish I could mention his/her name here, but I cannot because his/her wish is to remain anonymous…

We invited various Greek astrologers to come over and speak to the conference but most of them rather deliberately (!) chose not to participate! You see, I don’t belong to the rather narrow minded and lucrative Greek astrological establishment, which I am ever criticizing! So, naturally the “establishment” backfired to me, by either not mentioning at all the “Astro-Mykonos 2001” or by portraying it in a negative way. After all, a cultured, open minded international conference that was not serving their lucrative and other interests was of no use to the Greek astrological establishment (or so they thought)…

I should also mention here that there is no Astrological Federation in Greece and cultured Astrology is generally marginalized in this small Mediterranean country. Plus, in 2001 there was no Facebook and the promotion of any event was possible only through TV and radio announcements, through relative articles on magazines and newspapers. But as the “Astro-Mykonos 2001” conference was not supported by any media corporation – despite all the efforts I had made and the dozens of press releases I had sent to every single media – ultimately the general public was not informed on this conference and the participation was rather limited. Eventually though, the rather small participation worked in our favor, because it created a warm and spontaneous atmosphere among the people that attended the conference!

In hindsight, I would say that the Greek public was not ready back in 2001 for conferences of such magnitude. They didn’t even know who Robert Hand, Noel Tyl etc. were (their books have never been translated in Greek). So, in the mind of the average Greek astrology “aficionado” the astrologers presented on Greek national TV were far more important than those “unknown strangers” speaking at the “Astro – Mykonos” conferences!

Astromykonos 2001 004 bb

The “giant” as a carriage, as a personality and as an Astrologer Noel Tyl during his magic lecture

Noel Tyl & Elizabeth Teissier - Astromykonos 2001

Two famous Astrologers under the sign of Capricorn: Noel Tyl and Elizabeth Teissier

The two International Conferences “Astro-Mykonos” 2000 and 2001 will undoubtedly remain in the history of modern Greek Astrology as two “beacons”, shining over the Greek astrological “haze” and “drought”, over the total absence of astrology conferences in Greece. Thanks to these two “Astro-Mykonos” conferences some internationally recognized, world famous Astrologers were invited for the first time in Greece – and the Greek public had the unique opportunity to assimilate some of their wisdom, to talk to them in person, to even join their table at the restaurant and enjoy a meal and a cup of wine rubbing shoulders with them!

Thanks to these two “Astro-Mykonos” conferences Greek Astrology somehow managed to emerge out of the fringe and stand (at least for a few days) at the center of the International Astrological scene!

Thomas Gazis

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A fatal kind of Synastry that resulted in Michelangelo’s disfigurement!

It is an irony that Michelangelo, the man who produced some of the finest works our world has ever seen and who glorified earth with heavenly beauty, was physically “ugly” himself! And not just ugly but actually disfigured! Not by nature but out of an act of violence inflicted upon him by one of his fellow students bearing the name Pietro Torrigiano!

Torrigiano was anything but a minor personality. In time he would become a great artist himself. He is accredited as the person who kick-started the British Renaissance (he escaped to England after injuring Michelangelo – as the latter was a protegee of the omnipotent Florentine family of the Medici)! Torrigiano was gifted alright but somehow unlucky too, as he was born at the same time and place as Michelangelo. This meant that he was condemned to live at the shadow of Michelangelo’s towering geniusness. Thus, it does not surprise us at all the fact that he was very jealous of him.

All in all, he was a tough, “macho” kind of man (he was even drafted at some point as a mercenary soldier). Obviously he was longing for any kind of pretence that would offer him the chance to unleash his smouldering grudge towards Michelangelo. And this chance was  given to him on a day when the two were copying – as apprentists – side by side some frescoes. Michelangelo made some snide remark to Torrigiano who was so much enraged by it that he punched him on the nose, breaking it.

According to Torrigiano’s own testimony of the event:

“This Buonarroti (Michelangelo) and I used when we were boys to go into the Church of the Carmine to learn drawing from the chapel of Masaccio. It was Buonarroti’s habit to banter all who were drawing there; and one day, among others, when he was annoying me, I got more angry than usual, and clenching my fist, gave him such a blow on the nose, that I felt bone and cartilage go down like biscuit beneath my knuckles; and this mark of mine he will carry with him to the grave.”

There is obviously too much jealousy and animosity involved in the Michelangelo – Torrigiano relationship (especially from Torrigiano’s part). And since the quality of a relationship depends largely on the type of Synastry that is formed between its members it seems as though the Michelangleo – Torrigiano Synastry was not a particularly happy one. And as we will soon see, indeed it wasn’t!

We do have in our disposition the complete birth data for Michelangelo (his time of birth as well) so we can cast his complete natal chart (you may see it below). He was a double Pisces (Sun and Moon in Pisces) with a Sagittarius Ascendant! His natal Moon and the ruler of his horoscope (Jupiter) are both residing in his Second House (in a very “solid”, down to earth and artistic House, that is)! His Sun is conjuncted by the ultra-energetic and bellicose planet Mars. Being a double Pisces he was meek alright but he was probably exhibiting as well some sudden Martian outbursts!

We know as well Torrigiano’s date of birth: November 24, 1472 (Old Style of course – Julian Calendar). As you can see below Torrigiano was a Sagitturius with a Virgonean Moon. And as in Michelangelo’s case he has a bellicose Sun / Mars conjunction too (in a fiery sign this time – no coincidence he is described as a man with a rather violent temper):

Although we don’t know Torrigiano’s time of birth we can still conduct a decent synastric study for these two Italian Renaissance artists. You may see their Synastry below (Michelangelo’s chart in the inner wheel and Torrigiano’s in the outer one):

We should start with the fact that their solar signs (Pisces and Sagittarius) are inharmonious. Although they traditionally share the same ruler – Jupiter – their natures (feminine – masculine, aquatic – igneous) are quite different and it is very hard for them to find some common ground. Michelangelo’s and Torrigiano’s respective Marses are not helping them either in that sense, as they are forming a square aspect among them – magnifying and exacerbating even the most trivial friction in their interaction. And since both their Marses are aspecting their respective Plutos’ too the slightest friction among them was producing extreme turmoil in their souls and was thus escalating into a deadly hostility – as if their very existence were in jeopardy!

If we had to associate envy with a specific planet then most probably this would be Saturn (and Saturn is particularly envious in front of accomplishments, recognition and fame). And in the current Synastry Torrigiano’s Saturn is forming a harsh square aspect to both Michelangelo’s Sun and Mars! This means that Torrigiano was feeling somehow inadequate in front of Michelangeo. He must have been cultivating in his soul a deadly envy for the latter’s brilliance, vivacity and talents! And as he was a couple of years senior to Michelangelo he probably tried to control and manipulate him, untill things escalated into that famous punching!

You see, although Torrigiano was too “macho”, his Virgonean Moon was very sensitive to criticism.  Thus, Michelangelo’s remarks seem to have upset him rather excessively and disproportionately to the occasion. And this due to the fact that Michelangelo’s Mars and Pluto are forming stressful and somehow “corrosive” aspects with Torrigiano’s Moon in Virgo.

This brief synastric analysis would be rather incomplete if we did not mention the fact that Torrigiano’s Sun, Mars and Venus are all “falling” in Michelangelo’s Twelfth House. The Twelfth House is a somehow “debilitating” area of the chart. Thus, if you are a tough guy you don’t want your Sun and your Mars to fall in some other guy’s Twelfth House – especially if you consider him a competitor of yours. In such an eventuality, you feel rather weak and confused when interacting with that guy. We might say that Torrigiano was somehow feeling “belittled” even by Michelangelo’s mere presence! And that’s a very discomforting sensation to someone who has not worked with himself and has not experienced the transcendental “Ego dissolution” state as a potentially “elevating” thing…The only alternative left then to the “raw” kind of people – in order for them to jump out of the numbing and humiliating limbo of the Twelfth House – is to resort to spasmodic acts and to an apparently unmotivated aggression…

Thomas Gazis
Copyright: Thomas D. Gazis

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Having a crush on society! (Jupiter – Sagittarius – Ninth House)

We mostly know Jupiter as a “beneficial” planet that is “magnifying” things and situations … And we probably know Sagittarius (the sign ruled by Jupiter) as the sign of “religion, higher education and distant traveling” … There is another important dimension to Sagittarius though which we often neglect: its impetus towards sociability! In other words, the trend of this sign to enthusiastically open up  to the “unknown others” and to continuously and indiscriminately mingle and interact with people and groups! Those individuals having a strong Sagittarius, Jupiter or ninth house emphasis in their charts are somehow imbued by a very special “geist”, which we could call “a crush on society”!And ultimately this “crush” turns to be one of the fundamental traits of Sagittarius (and of the two other astrological archetypes associated with Sagittarius: Jupiter and the Ninth house)!

In the “dynamic” zodiac (where each sign represents an advanced step of the preceding one) the sign of Sagittarius is located immediately after the “pairing” signs (Libra, Scorpio) and before the “universal” ones (Aquarius, Pisces). Therefore it represents an intermediate step, a phase where the individual should move past the stage of romantic and sexual pairing (which is “sugarish” and tends to “engulf”, to close in  the individuals).The sign of Sagittarius is thrusting us forward, beyond the often petty and claustrophobic company of our “buddies”, of “our own people”. It is enticing us to open up to the wider world, to indiscriminately socialize and thus evolve. It advices us to overcome our narrow horizons, our selfishness, the “Samsara” of our micro-routine and gradually pass to the higher state of becoming a “universal being”. At that state we encounter ourselves fully twinned with our unknown fellow-humans, ultimately loving them as much as our own self!

The sign of Sagittarius is thus inducing a major “consciousness shift”, urging us to go beyond the (often raw and immature) “pairing” and “becoming buddies” thing,  to move onto the broader and undifferentiated “socializing”! To begin to feel our intimate “likeness” to our totally unknown fellow-humans. But this is something extremely difficult for the “average Joe” to achieve,  unless he has in his chart elements conferring to him this kind of “social crush” quality! That is why the “geist” of Sagittarius (Jupiter and ninth house) is ultimately so important to our society! As much as a Scorpio is longing to meet his/her viscerally desired lover a Sagittarius is longing to meet an unknown to him/her group of people (and the more unknown the people around him/her the more s/he longs to get to know them and exchange energies!)

So the “Archer” is a collective unifying force, a very strong, cohesive and heightened societal link! In order now to be sociable, to stand constantly beside unknown individuals one should have an open, elevated mind and display a friendly and benevolent attitude to his/her fellow humans! You see, the over-sensitive people, the touchy, immature, suspicious ones are mostly anti-social (as they somehow fear the contact with any people they don’t know. Thus they enclose themselves within “petty-groups” and environments they are familiar with – which they can manipulate! This kind of people is set to a rather phobic mode when found in an “open” social environment. So, whenever an opportunity arises for them to go out and meet unknown  people they mostly overlook it thinking: “why should I go to an “alien” environment, full of people I don’t know who might put me down, hurt me etc.”…

This mentality is characterizing an awful lot of people who are ending up couch potatoes, watching TV or “procrastinately” surfing on the net (losing thus valuable opportunities their eventual social participation might have given them – i.e. to find a good job or a proper partner). So we need to overcome this anti-social trend that prevails to the average person. And the energy needed to overcome it is provided to us by the sign of Sagittarius (and on another level by the sign of Aquarius, whose Sagittarius is somehow a “proto-form”, an early “warmer” version – Sagittarius being a fire sign)!

Most people are not endowed with a surplass of Sagittarius, Jupiter or Ninth House energies in their charts and thus they lack this kind of openness to their unknown fellow – humans. People in general have a tendency to “close in” and mistrust those who do not partake to their own group. This means that our societies are largely composed of isolated groups/companies of people, who do not readily exchange energies and do not fully communicate with each other (thus these groups easily degenerating into fractions, cliques etc.). And of course this is not producing a healthy social fabric at all! Where narrow minds prevail people isolate themselves in small groups and then the vital “societal energies” do not flow freely – they get “coagulated” instead – creating within the social fabric all kinds of gaps and “polarizations”. The society as a whole cannot function properly and is ultimately driven into decline and collapse.
This is the case of our modern western societies, which over the past decades have somehow collapsed and led us to the current  mega – crisis (which apart from being a financial crisis is mostly a social/ethical one)! Us the Astrologers can easily detect at the core of this social crisis a deficit of sagittarian  “social crush ” geist! This seems to be the major problem in our contemporary western – or westernized – societies: the guileless opening to our unknown fellow human (with no expectancy of a blatant benefit – such as profit, social or professional advancement etc.). This kind of “opening” creates a free flow of the energies and a general uplifting of the society!

Thus, the stronger the presence of Sagittarius, Jupiter and Ninth house in our charts the more prominently we have a  “crush on society”, the more open we are towards our fellow-humans, the more we are attracted by the large and unknown to us groups of people and therefore the more we partake of society and of the powerful energies flowing in it, getting “enriched” by them and ultimately contributing ourselves to the formation of a more healthy, “homogenized”, progressed and bright society!

Thomas Gazis
Copyright: Thomas D. Gazes

This is a newer version of a Thomas Gazis article that was published οn the December 2013 issue of the Greek magazine “Astrologiki Pyxida” (“Astrological Compass”).

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The (erected by Cardanus) horoscope of the top Byzantine/ Renaissance astrologer Trapezuntius!  

   (Portrait of the top Byzantine/ Renaissance astrologer George Trapezuntius)

Many historians nowadays are beginning to realize that the contribution of the Byzantine scholars to the Italian Renaissance – although much praised  – in reality has been underestimated! I could share my own testimony here – for the little it counts for – since I am researching Byzantine astrology for many years and I have come to the conclusion that the Byzantines Astrologers have substantially influenced their European colleagues – and the Renaissance Astrology in general!

A leading figure of the Byzantine and Renaissance Astrology – a figure that directly and indirectly influenced many European astrologers – is George of Trebizond (or George Trapezuntios)! He was born in 1396 in the island of Crete. His family originated from Trebizond in Pontus (now Trabzon in Turkey but back then a major Greek-Byzantine city and an important astronomical and astrological center). Trapezuntius was a true cultured Astrologer (we might call him today an “omniscient” as he was an astronomer, a mathematician, a translator, orator, philosopher, physician etc.).

People know next to nothing about Byzantium and the Byzantines. So, to make you realize – in the blink of an eye  – how important Trapezuntius has been to the European astrology I am inviting you to take a look at the photo below. It shows a list of the books that the famous English astrologer William Lilly had in his possession (he enlists them himself at the end of his book “Christian Astrology”). In this list we can clearly see that Lilly was studying the Georgius Trapezuntius’ book “In centum Ptolomei Aphorismos”!

In those times Crete was under Venetian rule. Thus, in 1496 Trapezuntius – having already distinguished himself in literature, philosophy and science – moved to Venice in order to work as a secretary at the powerful politician and humanist Francesco Barbaro. Alongside his work he began teaching Greek (which was becoming “fashionable” back then in Italy) and probably astrology too! His fame spread rapidly throughout Italy and he was soon receiving invitations to teach at various universities (he taught at the ones of Vincenza, Florence and Rome). A few years after, an even greater recognition came for him by the hand of the very Pope Gregory IV (a great lover of literature and the arts) who appointed him an apostolic secretary!

In all those years Trapezuntius (apart from teaching letters, phisosophy, oratory and eventually translating greek texts into latin) was most probably practicing and teaching astrology too! We have a testimony on this from the famous Italian astrologer Lucas Gauricus. In his popular book “Tractatus astrologicus” Gauricus collected/ computed the horoscopes of the most illustrious scholars of his era and among them he displays the one of Trapezuntius! You may see it below in its square form that was very popular up to a couple of centuries ago. Gauricus is “tagging” Trapezuntius as an astronomer (a term that in the language of that era means mostly an astrologer!)

Below this horoscope Gauricus is adding some info on Trapezuntius (in Latin): “He was born in the island of Crete, whose latitude is 36 degrees. He has been a professor of letters in many Italian cities and a distinguished astronomer. He himself recorded all his relative birthday events (Gauricus means here the specific date and time of every Trapezuntius’ Solar Return) and he computed this particular natal chart, in various Greek and Latin forms”!

The above horoscope looks neat and well calculated but in reality it is somehow inconsistent! First of all, it indicates as Trapezuntius birth year the one of 1395. In his biographies though Trapezuntius is reported as been born in 1396. To make things more complicated, the planetary positions in this horoscope do not correspond to the very year indicated on it (1395) but to the year 1396! Furthemore, the indicated time of birth is 12:20 “An. Mer.” (meaning “Ante meridiem”), resulting to 00:20 AM. Thus Trapezuntius’ full data of birth should be April 4, 1396, 00:20 in Iraklion – Crete. By providing these data to the overall infallible astrology program “Solar Fire Gold” we get the chart you see below (I am using the Porphyry house system that was the most popular in that period – Gauricus is using another house system that is none of the ones we are familiar with. I think it is the obsolete by now “Bianchinus”).

What strikes us immediately is the fact that the Moon is in Aquarius and not in Pisces. Actually it is in the 16th degree of Aquarius, almost half a sign away from the position indicated by Gauricus (1 degree of Pisces). In fact, on that specific date the Moon would enter the sign of Pisces at 22:18 – almost 22 hours after the time indicated on Gauricus chart! For the rest, the other planetary positions are almost coinciding!

There is though another major Italian Renaissance astrologer who somehow paid tribute to Trapezuntius by publishing his horoscope as well: Hieronymus Cardanus!  In his book “Liber de exemplis centum geniturarum” (“A Book of a hundred nativities’ examples”, in which Caedanus is analyzing many horoscopes that were already present in Gauricus “Tractatus Astrologicus” – plagiarizing thus Gauricus, a common practice back then – he includes as well the horoscope of our brilliant Byzantine scholar. Cardanus was a “Ptolemaic” astrologer and that was an additional reason for him to honor the “par excellence: Ptolemaic Trapezuntius – whose books most probably had thoroughly read! Actually, he is presenting the horoscope of Trapezuntius on the very first pages of his book – second only to the horoscope of Petrarch!
Cardanus is using the Equal House planetary system and certain planetary positions in his chart are identical to the Gauricus ones – to the minute! (Venus’, Saturn’s and the North Node’s)! But we find again here a wrong natal Moon for Trapezuntius: 2 degrees and 20 minutes of Pisces – instead of the 16 degrees and 52 minutes of Aquarius). So, either the birth data of Trapezuntius is wrong and he indeed has a Pisces Moon or his data is right and his Moon is in Aquarius (it was miscalulated by both Gauricus and Cardanus – or simply Cardanus blatantly copied Gauricus, changing slightly the positions of some planets so that they do not all match the ones provided by Gauricus…).

In any case, we are rather perplexed by the apparent miscalculation of the Moon from the part of both Gauricus and Cardanus. Especially Cardanus – apart from being an excellent astrologer / astronomer – is considered one of the greatest mathematical minds in the history of mankind! And even if this Trapezuntius’ horoscope was casually found by Gauricus and Cardanus in some manuscript and was merely copied to their books, they should have accurately verified every single planetary position on it before publishing it.

We should add a precious piece of information here: John Monfasani – a major Trapezuntius’  modern biographer –  is arguing that this great personality was born on April 3, 1395 (if this is the case then his Moon is in Virgo – and that Moon reflects very well the fact that he was very productive, that he worked for a long time as a secretary and that he was attracted by young girls). Apparently though Monfasani is not a great astrology connoisseur, because he draws the conclusion that Trapezuntius was born on the 3rd of April out of a personal note the latter wrote, stating that on the 3rd of April 1453 he was having his 58th Solar Revolution. Every astrologer knows though that a solar revolution may occur a day before our calendric birthday – so Trapezuntius might very well have had his 58th Solar Return on the 3rd of April 1453 while actually his birthday was on the 4th of April.

Of course, if Trapezuntius in 1453 was celebrating  his 58th (and not his 57th) Solar Return  then he must have been born in 1395 and not in 1396! There is though an elemenet capable of causing a certain confusion: a byzantine year was starting on the 1st of September! The byzantines that is were celebrating the first day of their new year 4 whole months before the Italians! This sort of discrepancy might have brought a certain difficulty in the conversion of the byzantine years into the corresponding Italian ones.

In 1447 the patron of Trapezuntius Pope Eugene died and Nicholas V took his place. Nicholas maintained Trapezuntius as an apostolic secretary – and as a translator of Greek secular and religious texts! At about this time Trebizond translated into Latin the “Almagest” of Ptolemy adding to it a commentary of his own in Latin – a commentary that would become very popular throughout Europe for the next four centuries!

                              (A commentary of Trapezuntius on Ptolemy’s “Almagest”)

In the new papal entourage though another scholar figure was becoming the center of attention: Poggio Bracciolini. Perhaps in order to differentiate himself from Trapezuntius – or to advance a “fellow patriot” of his in front of the unstoppable stream of Greek culture that was ever more sweeping Italy – Bracciolini imposed the rather minor (as we know today) Latin orator Quintilianus as the supreme intellectual figure of the day! Trapezuntius – who obviously felt unfairly sidelined by this meteoric rise of Bracciolini – began to feverishly shatter Quintilianus in his speeches and letters. Thus he inevitably came into conflict with Bracciolini himself – and obviously with the circle of Bracciolini’s “supporters”. That was a big mistake, because no matter how just Trapezuntius was (and how unfair Bracciolini) ultimately Trapezuntius was all alone in this fight – while Bracciolini as a typical Aquarius (and as an Italian of course) had numerous and powerful allies.

The pretence for dismissing Trapezuntius was given to the Bracciolini’s entourage at a meeting of the apostolic secretaries. There, Bracciolini made ​​an ironic comment to Trapezuntius who got up and  threw a powerful punch in his face (we shouldn’t forget that Trapezuntius was as Aries – and if he was born in 1396 he had his Mars in Aries too!). By committing this explicitly violent act against the vain reviver of Quintilianus he fell completely out of favour and eventually was forced to leave Rome in 1452 and move with his family to the – ruled by the Spaniards’ back then – city of Naples.

In Naples George of Trebizond worked as a secretary to the King Alfonso of Aragon. This was one of the his most flourishing periods, as he wrote then his two major astrological essays: the “A Short essay on Antiscia” (“Brevis de antisciis tractatus”) and “Why the judgements (predictions) of the astrologers are failing in our times” (“Cur his temporibus astrologorum judicia fallant “). At the same time, he translated into Latin the astrological work of pseudo-Ptolemy “Centiloquium”, which became as well a mega hit throughout Europe. Furthermore, he continued teaching and one of his disciples – in this dominated by Vesuvius city – was Giovanni Pontano, who would later on become a major humanist and astrologer! And while his Naples sojourn started pretty well, after a few years Trapezuntius began experiencing problems there too…

At a certain point Pope Nicholas V summoned Trapezuntius back to Rome. There he met (and probably even taught) Regiomontanus, who around the year 1462 was living  at the Roman villa of the Byzantine cardinal Bessarion – who had turned his house into a cradle of hellenism and humanism). But the environment in Rome was still “toxic” to this Greek emigre and he consequently fell victim to new adversities and intrigues. He left Rome and travelled to his fatherland Constantinople – which had fallen by then to the Ottoman Turks. Apparently the Turks were not very much thrilled by the Trapezuntius’ literary and astrological virtues, so he returned to Rome. But he was again treated in a hostile manner (as he had sought to establish relations with the arch enemies of Christendom the Turks). He finally died around 1473, destitute and suffering from dementia (he was wandering like a fool through the streets of Rome), without ever been acknowledged for the pivotal role he played in the revival of the ancient Greek-knowledge (and of astrology in particular) in the renascent Europe…

Thomas Gazis
Copyright: Thomas D. Gazis

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Constantinople’s inauguration horoscope

In the 4th century CE the Roman empire was entering a phase of decline that would ultimately lead it to its demise. Thus it’s not very suprising the fact that in 324 CE the emperor Constantine the Great took the radical (and somehow heretic) action to transfer the capital of his empire from Rome to Constantinople – almost fifteen hundred kilometres to the east! The location that was about to become the future Constantinople was back then just a small citadel named (by its greek founders) “Byzantium”. But thanks to a construction frenzy that lasted 6 years Constantine built magnificent buildings, fora, baths and an hippodrome and managed to metamorphose the humble citadel into a cosmopolitan city that would rival Rome itself!

And then, the day of the inauguration of the city came! Which actually had to be determined by an astrologer (astrology was rife in the Roman empire and was about to become rife in the Byzantine empire too)! There are two major byzantine historians (Zonaras and Kedrinos) specifically mentioning the inauguration date of the new capital Constantinople: on the 11th of May 330 (Old Style)! It was a date established by the emperor’s personal astrologer Valens who – as the historians are detailing – worked very hard and for a long time in order to find a uniquely propitious date.

Fortunately, we have a byzantine source reporting the time of the inauguration too (see Magdalino’s “The occult sciences in Byzantium”, page 168). It is “at two hours and 26 minutes”. The phrase “at two hours” does not mean “at two o’ clock”. The byzantines counted their day from dawn on. Thus, “at two hours and 26 minutes” means “two hours and 26 minutes after the sunrise”. But there is another catch here. These byzantine hours and minutes are not exactly like the ones we are familiar with. A byzantine daily “hour” for example is the result of the division of the natural day in 12 equal parts. Thus, a byzantine daily “hour” might very well range  from 45 to 75 minutes (depending on the season and on the latitude of the location)! To spare the computations, “two daily hours and 26 minutes” for the latitude of Constantinople on the 11 of May equal 2  hours and 53 of our modern time! And since the Sun rose at 5:51 on the 11th of May 330 CE the time of the inauguration is approx. 8:44 am. (and I say approximately because the byzantines did not possess precision clocks and they relied upon raw sundials and water clepsydras).

Having in our hands the exact date and time of Constantinople’s inauguration we can now erect its inauguration horoscope! It is the one you see below (rendered somehow “hellenistically” – no moderns planets in it):

So, Constantinople is a Taurus with Moon in Leo and the Ascendant in Cancer. Back in 330 CE  the astrologers were using the “Whole Sign Houses” system of domification. They were computing the Ascendant alright (19 degrees of Cancer in this case) but the sign of the Ascendant was becoming (in its entirety) the “First House” (or to be more precise “The First Place”), the following sign was becoming the “Second Place” and so on. In the above chart, the First Place corresponds to the entire sign of Cancer! And without doubt, having the two benefics in the First Place (that is Venus and Jupiter, with Venus being the dispositor of the Sun and Jupiter being in Sect) seems to be an excellent election!

Moon and Saturn are in the Second Place of “material posessions” (and the new empire had to have a lot of them!). I would like to add a peculiar note here. The 11th century byzantine emperor Manuel Komnenos was an excellent astrologer. I was reading a long letter he wrote defending astrology against an important theologian – monk who was refutating it (letter preserved in CCAG V.1, 108). To give more credit to astrology Manuel mentions that Constantine the Great inaugurated Constantinople in accordance to the election made by his astrologer Valens. And Manuel Komnenos draws a rather bitter innuendo here when he goes: “Valens who was a monk himself elected the Saturn of Contantinople to be in the Second Place, so that the money of the citizens go to the monks – as we can see happening in our times!” Voila! Saturn in the Second Place! Here I had a testimony that the above inauguration chart for Constantinople is the right one!

In hindsight Valens’ election was a good one. After all Constantinople endured for more than a thousand years, till she fell to the ferocious ottoman army. The Turks had made an epic decend from central Asia to the Byzantine land (corresponding roughly to today’s Turkey) and in 1453 managed to breach the walls of Constantinople, occupying the city and renaming it Istanbul.

Of course we have to have at least an elementary knowledge of hellenistic astrology in order to realize whether this a nicely elected chart or not. The Sun is “in Sect” and in the Eleventh Place of “Good Spirit”! The “daemon” (known as well as “Part of Spirit” – a part that the byzantines were using a lot) most probably is in the Eleventh Place of “Good Spirit” (the Φ symbol you see at the first degree of Taurus) and that is an ideal domification because it means that the new capital would be a brilliant city protected and “guided” by good spirits (I am saying “most probably” because if Valens had miscalculated the positions of the Sun and the Moon even by some degree then the “daemon” might very well be in the Ninth Place of “God” – and that would be a jolly domicafication too)! The benefic North Node of the Moon stands in the Tenth Place and that’s a sign that the city will excel in everything and will become renowned!

And for those who are knowledgeable in hellenistic/traditional astrology (or who would like to learn more about it) it would be proper to include here an excellent traditional analysis of the inauguration chart of Constantinople from the part of the distinguished Serbian astrologer Goran Konchar:

“What stands out for me in short is this: both benefics are in the First Place in the fertile sign of Cancer, culminating from an angular Point of Fortune (Venus in her triplicity/decan rules it, while Jupiter is the exalted lord of the ascendant and receives her!) in the 4th Place. This is an excellent indicator of the city’s growth, fame and wealth. The Moon as the ascendant lord and the ‘natural’ ruler of the Point of Fortune is in a partile, sextile with it from it’s 11th sign – again, very good, especially for acquisition of wealth. At the same time, the Moon is waxing in a diurnal chart but is placed under the earth in its halb and in mutual reception with the chart luminary, the Sun in the excellent 11th Place – both lights as sources of life in fixed signs (durability) their mutual agreement/sympathy still made more firm by the placements in antiscia signs – the attempt to ensure harmony/good will between rulers and the populace. Moreover, both lights are also in the terms of the benefics! The Moon is additionally over the imperial star Regulus. The malefics rule the 7th Place of enemies in Capricorn and both are afflicted/weakened. Saturn is in the turned 8th, not beholding its domicile and impeding himself (detriment) in the bounds of Mars while the Sun is in a superior square to it, and applying – death and destruction of the enemies, even though they may prove to be a very tough nut to crack (a superior malefic in a fixed sign). Mars is applying to him as well by superior sextile, providing for more damage. Mars is made even more impotent than Saturn by its position in Gemini in the 12th , the house of its sadness (Ibn Ezra). The chart has the ascendant of Thema mundi, an attempt to create a world – ruling city?”

As Goran is pointing out, I think that indeed Constantine’s the Great intention was to build from scratch a world ruling cosmopolis! Under this point of view, the election that his astrologer Valens made for the inaguaration of the city was a good one! Certainly this is not the most perfect election ever made (some byzantine historians purport the story that Valens was postponing the inauguaration for 14 whole years because he could not find the proper – perfect – planetary configurations!). But ultimately nothing is perfect. Constantinople started its life as a Roman city, it was soon turned into a predominately Greek one and finally in 1453 CE ceased to exist – as the Turks militarily occupied it and altered its essence…

Thomas Gazis
Copyright: Thomas D. Gazis   

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Feminine aggressiveness (what has astrology taught me)!

(photo courtesy: "Psychology Today" magazine -  "Bullying in the female world" by Ditta M. Oliker)

Feminine aggressiveness! Well, that’s a term you probably never heard before. It might even upset some of you. How can one characterize aggressive the energy that we all know as maternal, receptive and tender? And how can the feminine energy manifest itself in a “bad” and aggressive way (under certain circumstances)? And so “badly” and aggressively as the masculine one? Personally I was not aware of this kind of “feminine aggressiveness” until I discovered its existence through Astrology!

Some ten years ago I was writing an article on the six zodiacal “Pairs” (which was published in 2004 on the historical “American Astrology” magazine. You may read it here). As I was beginning to conceptualizing this article I realized that there is in nature a particular “feminine selfishness” that is equivalent – but not identical – to the masculine one. And consequently there is a feminine kind of aggressiveness corresponding to the masculine one! They both have the same intensity but they are actually developing in “different phases” (I am explaining this further on)!

Astrology might be of help to us here, because the very zodiac is somehow built upon this “masculine – feminine” pattern. You probably know that the zodiac is symmetrically composed of six masculine and six feminine signs. Aries is a masculine sign, Taurus is a feminine one, Gemini is a masculine sign, Cancer a feminine one and so on. On my aforementioned “American Astrology” article I was depicting the masculine signs as “mountains” and the feminine ones as sort of gorges or “ravines”. Thus, we might picture the masculine aggressiveness as a “mountainous” one and the feminine aggressiveness as one that emulates the “concavely” traits of a ravine!

Let’s take a person traveling in a varied landscape, on a clear day. S/he can easily spot the mountains around him/her, because they are prominent, obvious and explicit! Similarly, we can all perceive easily and IMMEDIATELY the masculine type of aggressiveness! Just picture somebody shouting loud at you or violently pushing you, in front of other people. That’s masculine aggressiveness alright! What about the feminine aggressiveness though? What would they be its key characteristics?

I began my quest on this subject by considering the feminine aggressiveness as a “ravine” kind of aggressiveness. When we are traveling it’s hard to spot the eventual ravines in our landscape. And if we are careless enough we might even fall in one of them, before even realizing that there was a ravine in front of us!

This means that the feminine aggressiveness is somehow invisible to our social environments. And although it is absolutely equal to the masculine one (they are both equally aggressive but they don’t seem so because their “phases” and “polarities” are opposite), it’s not easily perceived and thus is not evaluated as an acutely aggressive energy! In reality the feminine aggressiveness (called “passive aggression” in psychology) works in rather IMPLICIT ways, moving through corridors that are hidden and behind the curtains. Thus, the feminine aggressiveness is somehow “silent”, not leaving obvious “trails” externally!

We need though to clarify something here: when we talk about the “feminine energy” we do not refer exclusively to women. Many men (even the allegedly “macho” ones) have prominent “feminine” energies in their charts and thus may resort to feminine aggressiveness!

The “Ego” drive (as defined by astrology)

It is imperative for each person to be special, unique, self-sufficient and secure, to have stamina and momentum, to impose its own interests and to dominate as much as it can the people and the situations around it. If the average Joe/Jane lacked an elementary strong “Ego” then s/he would be “crashed” by the multiple external pressures s/he would be constantly receiving in life. This process of building and strengthening a human being’s “Ego”, of achieving his/her individualization and “diversification”, is supervised by the first two signs of the zodiac: by Aries (which is a “masculine” sign) and by Taurus (a “feminine” sign). The secret now is that the aforementioned process is handled by the signs of Aries and Taurus “in tandem” – by splitting that is the process in half and by assigning to Aries its masculine “phase” and to Taurus its feminine phase! The signs of Aries and Taurus (and all the remaining adjacent signs) are in reality astrological “Pairs”, small “wholenesses”, two equal but opposite – complementary “polarities”.

Regarding Aries we can easily understand why it is considered the sign of “Ego”, the sign impersonating the overt aggression: it is a masculine sign ruled by the belligerent planet Mars. What about Taurus though? How can a “low key” feminine sign – ruled by the planet Venus – be so selfish and eventually belligerent? Is there indeed a feminine ego? Astrology is telling us that there is – and that it is as acute as the masculine one! If the masculine Ego is manifested through overt aggressiveness – by even being an all too clear “bully” – the female selfishness is mostly manifested through INERTIA and self-protection, through hidden and somehow “manipulative” behaviors and actions!

Feminine aggressiveness entails the art of “invisibly acting”, of not participating in those situations that are not yielding some kind of gain (emotional, financial etc.) to the individual! Under this point of view we might say that the insecure, “feminine Ego” is habitually fudging things up, resorting to a skillful “imbroglio”, to a smooth “withdrawal” and “absenting” every time it faces a non convenient situation!

Actually, the sign of Taurus is representing – in the most archetypal way – this kind of “feminine Ego”! Don’t get me wrong though here. Not all Tauruses are by definition “femininely aggressive”. Moreover, we should not forget that there is in literature the notorious “feathered Bull”, representing a spiritual, elevated human being! Actually, the raw, unrefined Tauruses are the ones that tend to be extremely egotistical and consequently “femininely aggressive”. You see, the feminine “Ego” is somehow urging the person to act “invisibly”, “behind the curtains”, to promote his/her own “plan” while keeping at a minimum level the expenditure of energies (sentimental, financial ones etc.) – especially when forced to participate in non desirable activities that seem unprofitable to the person.

An individual partaking to the “raw, unrefined Taurean type” is usually avoiding to employ overt acts of selfishness and aggression. If there isn’t around some crucial reason s/he will religiously abstain from any action that might visibly upset the energies in his/her environment (not necessarily out of  “goodness” but because s/he is aware that s/he will be immediately targeted by the people around him/her – and that would mean a lot of hostility and aversion thrown over him/her. The feminine energy is “ever self-protecting, ever preserving its own self” – meaning that the people representing it are fully aware of how important it is to act silently and behind the curtains, without overtly provoking the others.

Thus the “raw Taurus type of individual” is generally displaying a meek and polite face outwards. But if it encounters a situation that ultimately jeopardizes his/her own personal interests (i.e. if s/he must financially assist someone or house needy people) then most probably such an individual will attempt to skillfully withdraw him/herself from the “acting stage” without being noticed – so that s/he ultimately protects his/her own interests and does not suffer the slightest loss or “damage”. And s/he will do this without apparently squabbling nor displaying any explicit aggressiveness or violence towards anyone. Simply, s/he will skillfully withdraw from any perilous to his/her own interests scene…

This kind of withdrawal though, this “silent refusal” to partake i.e. in a charitable activity is a sign of strong selfishness – and therefore of aggressiveness towards the people involved in that activity. Of course the “raw Taurean type of individual” did not swear at someone, nor s/he violently pushed anybody. Indirectly, however, s/he behaved as if s/he had sworn at them or as if s/he had violently pushed them away! Actually s/he did behave aggressively towards the people around him/her but without offering them any tangible “handle”, without leaving any visible “trail” so that they promptly recognize how aggressively s/he behaved! That’s “feminine aggression” in a nutshell !

The art of maneuvering without leaving trails

The fact that the “feminine Ego” works in implicit ways – meaning that it cannot be easily spotted as aggressive by the others – does not automatically render it inoffensive and less “mean”… In reality it is as powerful and “mean” as the masculine one, as the “raw Ariettid” kind of selfishness. Let’s make a “thought experiment” and set two individuals – each representing a “polarity” – in a controlled (i.e. business) environment, with identical provocative stimuli. An “astrologically masculine” individual will react to the negative stimuli most probably by shouting loud, by over-gesturing or even by overtly behaving violently. But in such an instance the prominently masculine individual would have totally exposed himself, disclosed his/her intentions and attracted hostility from the people around him/her!

Instead, the prominently feminine individual would have more methodically and carefully promoted his personal interests – without overexposing himself/herself and without attracting too much aversion and hostility. Such a person (even if physically present) will be skillfully “absenting” any situation not yielding a meaningful benefit to himself/herself  – no matter how critical this situation might be to some other people. Only in time – and only by those who delve deeper in human interactions – the full extent of the incident will be revealed and only then the participants will realize how selfishly the “raw Taurean type of person” behaved!

Therefore, we should define as selfish and aggressive not only those people who are overtly behaving in an aggressive manner but those people too who are intentionally “withdrawing” and “absenting” in critical to their fellow-humans situations, all those individuals who are not there when the people around them need them the most. Any person not helping his/her fellow humans – in the name of not minimally jeopardizing his/her own personal interests – should be considered a selfish and aggressive person!

Whenever someone remains silent and uninvolved is front of a critical situation, of an emergency, of an injustice committed in his/her own vicinity, then that person is actually displaying a “femininely aggressive” behavior! Whenever i.e. a wealthy person is not assisting the needy people around him/her – for example the unemployed ones who cannot afford even their daily bread – then this wealthy person is employing a “feminine aggressiveness” towards his/her fellow humans (and society in general). The feminine aggression is not easily spotted by third parties as the “perpetrator” might employ highly manipulative behaviors.

How many times i.e. have you been confronted with a person who has (directly or indirectly) wronged you (or wronged somebody else), who has behaved in a acutely selfish manner (although covertly, so that nobody recognizes it as such) and who not only is stubbornly refusing to acknowledge his/her wrong doing but is skillfully trying to reverse the situation, by putting you down and leading you into an disadvantageous, defensive state (adding thus insult to the injury)…

In front of such a person – and his/her humongous hypocrisy – you might lose your temper and start yelling and gesturing. And then YOU will be the one looking aggressive in the eyes of the people around you! In such a way the “prominently feminine” person will have managed to doubly victimize you – while thanks to his/her own “manipulative” skills s/he will be projecting a “goody two shoes” image to the people around! This kind of behavior is immensely aggressive but in a convert, feminine manner! Meaning that it might not look aggressive in the eyes of any third party – who may ultimately target you as the aggressive person!

To put it in the words of the clinical psychologist and “Psychology Today” author Ditta M.Oliker: 

“What struck me as I was watching the film “The Help” is how it also dramatically and effectively captures the emotional and psychological violence of social aggression, including the sting and cruelty of the verbal “weapons” women use. The words now associated with female aggressive behavior include: excluding, ignoring, teasing, gossiping, secrets, backstabbing, rumor spreading and hostile body language (i.e., eye-rolling and smirking).  Most damaging is turning the victim into a social “undesirable”. 

The behavior and associated anger is hidden, often wrapped in a package seen as somewhat harmless or just a “girl thing”. The covert nature of the aggression leaves the victim with no forum to refute the accusations and, in fact, attempts to defend oneself leads to an escalation of the aggression.  What the film doesn’t show though is that the effects of social aggression can be longer lasting and more damaging than physical aggression. Since the “weapons” have a stealth nature to them, there is less possibility of anticipating the specifics of an attack and fewer actions to defend against an attack.

Personally, I would like to stress once more the fact that the feminine aggression is not limited to women but it extends to the “astrologically feminine men” too. If this is still a “neologism” to you, here is my definition of it: An “astrologically feminine” person is the one having in his/her chart as many as possible of the preconditions described below (the more such preconditions s/he has the more “astrologically feminine” s/he is. Points 1 and 2 should be considered the most critical):

  1. A predominance of feminine signs.
  2. A feminine houses emphasis
  3. Many “feminine planets” in the angles of  their charts
  4. A feminine “supremacy” over the planetary aspects of his/her chart etc.

(Note: the term “astrologically feminine” does not coincide with the term “effeminate”. In reality, there are many “astrologically feminine” macho men out there…)

In the final analysis, we are all  familiar with the bitter “taste” of feminine aggression, as we are experiencing it – more or less- often  in our everyday lives. It is a particular kind of methodically structured and veiled aggression that is not easily perceived externally. And that’s exactly what makes it dangerous, the fact that it is an extremely sharp and corrosive type of aggression that our societies have not still fully acknowledged!

As I already mentioned, the feminine aggression is more directly linked to the sign of Taurus (but not all Tauruses are femininely aggressive) and to the feminine signs in general (think i.e. of a Cancer or Scorpio. They are capable of “tuning” themselves to very “femininely aggressive” frequencies)! And as I repeatedly pointed out, the “feminine aggression” is not limited just to women but it extents to all men having predominantly “feminine” energies in their charts.

Thomas Gazis
Copyright: Thomas D. Gazis


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An astrological analysis of Robin Williams’ death

Popular actor Robin Williams was found dead on August 11th, 2014. This came as a surprise to many because Robin Williams – as far as we know – was not suffering  from any fatal illness… And the surprise got even bigger when we read that the “Jumanji” man commited suicide! Well, he was fighting a long battle against depresion and substances addiction but apparently he was doing well with rehab. In any case, there are out there millions of people living under similar conditions – or much much worse under a financial point of view – and most of them DO NOT commit suicide! What went wrong then with Robin Williams? His natal chart (and the transits/progresions in it) might offer us some clues.

To begin with, Robin Williams has a very “watery” chart. Apart from being a Cancer and having a Scorpio Ascendant he has a PISCES Moon too in the FOURTH House! This watery over-emphasis endowed him with an “audience charisma” (he had a very special way of “touching” emotionally the audience)! On the other hand, with so much water in his chart he was way too sensitive! And this sensitivity of his has been exacerbated recently by transiting Neptune touching his over-sensitive Pisces Moon in the Fourth House!

Meanwhile, his progressed Moon was currently moving in his Eighth House and was about to form a square aspect to his natal Saturn! His progressed Sun too was still forming a conjunction to his natal Saturn! So we are getting here a particular configuartion that denotes very well his pre-mortem state of mind: both his progressed Luminaries are forming a major aspect with Saturn – that we might call a “double-whammy” configuration! Add to this transiting Saturn on his Ascendant/ in his First House and you see “restriction” coming out big time in Robin’s life! And a sense of “heaviness” as well, of aging rapidly and not getting much satisfaction out of life…

Apparently, Robin was an ultra sensitive person going now through an ultra Saturnian period (and as Saturn in Psychological astrology is considered a major depresion agent we get a better picture now of what Robin Williams was experiencing in these last days of his life)! He was a “Puer” that all of the sudden had to become a “Senex”… But as he was an eternal “Peter-Pan” symbol a “Senex” could never become! You see he endeared himself to the audiences for being the “Anti-Senex” symbol par excellence! And with so much “water: in his chart that kind of “endearment” he could not afford to lose…

Thomas Gazis

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Jupiter in Leo (an “unhyped” interpretation…)

                                                        (Courtesy: Bill Attride)

There has been too much hype over the entrance of planet Jupiter in the sign of Leo – a few days ago. Supposedly all things are going to get better now and the optimism will sky-rocket among the people! But how can this be? According to the astrological tradition Jupiter was in a far better position in the previous sign, in Cancer where it is EXALTED! This means that from the moment Jupiter left Cancer and passed in the sign of Leo it was somehow “demoted” energetically – since Jupiter neither rules Leo nor is exalted in this fiery sign!

Undoubtedly Jupiter is not in its most privileged position when in Leo. On the other hand it is not in its most inopportune position either … You see, according to the Hellenistic astrology (and to the Medieval / Renaissance one) Jupiter is the nocturnal ruler of the fiery triplicity (Aries, Leo, Sagittarius). Consequently, it acquires in Leo certain titles and offices. Not though the ones most astrologers are thinking of. If you noticed before, I wrote that Jupiter is the nocturnal ruler of the fiery triplicity. Which means that in the sign of Leo it exhibits somehow distinctively its properties but ultimately in a different – “esoteric” I would dare to say – manner. And in any case not so exuberantly and visibly as many would expect. This is pointed out by the law of “Tao” as well: The extreme “Yang” energies (the combined ones of Jupiter and Leo) are converted – from some point on – into “Yin”ones!

The main “obstacle” for Jupiter in Leo to manifest its exuberant side stems out of its most archetypal / fundamental property: the one of “opening up” and “expanding”, the ever going on process of “dilatation and expansion”. Such a property though is not particularly compatible with the sign of Leo, which generally works in favor of the “centrality” (Leo is ever promoting the “centralization” of all things). Therefore, there can never be a true”expansion” in the essentially “centripetal” sign of Leo, which is pushing the energies from the periphery to the center – and not from the center outwards, as  the expansive planet Jupiter desires. The often narrow minded, stubborn and inflexible nature of Leo offers anything but a breeding ground for the spiritual and idealistic Jupiter, which needs a lot of dialogue, movement, freedom and open-mindness in order to flourish!

Jupiter somehow stands for the “complexity” while Leo opts for the “simplicity”(Jupiter ever interrelates isolated ideas, composing out of them complex and advanced concepts – and this mecchanism lies at the foundations of philosophy). On the other hand Leo is removing the more complex layers in order to get to the very core of a situation. Thus the two work at crosses purposes here. In addition, Leo (together with Virgo) is the sign of “purification”. It wants to purify things out of any “spurious” element. But it is imperative to define first here what is a “spurious” element according to the Leonian perspective – because what exacly is “spurious” is often debatable. And what might seem spurious to the sign of Leo might seem quite indispensable to Jupiter so that it makes a “conceptual interconnection” and extrapolate something “higher” out of various randomly lying and apparently unrelated ideas.

On a “mundane” level Jupiter has to do with goals, belief systems and ideals (the ideals of a certain society, of a state, country etc). With the presence of Jupiter in Leo the social / national ideals might fluctuate and become more rigid and authoritarian – permitting thus extreme ideologies to surface. And as Leo is a conservative sign (remember that in the zodiac it is diametrically opposed to the “radical” sign of Aquarius) it is now likely to trigger a more rigid spirit worldwide. Perhaps it is no coincidence that the first “tsunami” of conservatism / monetarism in the Western world appeared in 1979 – when Jupiter was in Leo again – with the election of Margaret Thatcher as Prime Minister of England.

Despite the fanfare of many astrologers the periods of Jupiter’s presence in Leo have not been the brightest in human history! In March 2003 we had the American-British invasion of Iraq (who can really forget the hysterical Bush’s and Blair’s cries / calls to war?). In January 1991 we had the war in the Persian Gulf, with the Americans leading both the liberation of Kuwait and the invasion of Iraq. While in June 1967 we had the “six days of war” between Israel and Egypt that almost sparked an international armaggedon. All these major wars were conducted in periods when Jupiter was in Leo! And the two wars in Iraq were apparently “justified” by the pretense that the Americans had to impose their own “democracy” upon Iraq (how much “Jupiter in Leo” is this thing – enforcing my own “democracy” upon others? No true democracy is ever enforcing anything to any one!)

On another level, perhaps it is not so surprising that the unusual and deadly heat wave that swept Europe in 2003 (that has allegedly caused more than 70,000 deaths) took place under the dominion of Jupiter in Leo (representing the somehow excessive manifestation of the “fiery element”, of the “heat”).

Clearly therefore, a lot of energy is released globally when Jupiter is “transiting” in Leo. But the question is how to manage all this exuberant energy, because if it is diverted in warfares – like in the periods mentioned above – no creative results can be obtained. Obviously all this “excess energy” is better channeled  in activities like sports (which are consistent with the spirit of Leo), in recreational purposes and in “games”. Also, with Jupiter in the sign of “spectacles” there will be a “booming” in film industry, fashion and in “spectacles” in general.

However, with Jupiter in Leo ​​some historical peace efforts were made too (such as the famous “Camp David” treaty  in 1978 between the Egyptian President Sadat and the Israeli Begin, the nuclear disarmament agreement of 1979 between the U.S. President Carter and the Russian Brezhnev and the historic west/east Germany unification in 1990). Perhaps this unifying trend stems from what I mentioned before as the “esoteric” aspect of Jupiter in Leo.

Ultimately that may be the best gift Jupiter in Leo will bestow upon us: the ability to work “esoterically” with ourselves and find our true inner core, our “center” so that in all purity we follow our hearts!

Thomas Gazis

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What is a patronage made of ? (the Da Vinci’s – Duke’s of Milan Synastry)

(Ludovico Sforza – Duke of Milan)

To my knowledge, there has never been a thorough study revealing the extent to whichthe incidental likings or aversions of the people involved in any situation ultimately determine the course of that situation – and the course of the events in general, both in our every day lives and in historical occurrences. I suspect that such a factor is considerably larger than we generally believe. Often it is due to some particular sympathy flaring among the participants of an x situation that turn i.e. a job interview into a cosy chat, that bring forth unexpectedly profitable deals, collaborations and enterprises! Thus,the quality of the human interactions, the inner “attunement” of the individuals (their “Synastry”, as we call it) is of an uttermost importance and it lies at the foundations of many human accomplishments!

I was pondering on this while I was studying the Synastry of the “Renaissance man par excellence” Leonardo Da Vinci and his major patron: the Duke of Milan Ludovico Sforza! I was wondering what was the astrological element that prompted Sforza to offer his generous and multi-annual patronage to Da Vinci (who had been seeking such a patronage out of many Italian lords all over Italy but mostly he was denied it)!


As you may see above, the horoscope of Ludovico Sforza has been preserved (this square type of horoscopes was in vogue till a couple of centuries ago). Sforza was born on the 3rd of August 1452 (Julian calendar). Thus, the Duke was a Leo Sun with his Moon in Pisces (by the way, he has the same “Luminaries” combination as  actor Robert De Niro – and judging by the Duke’s portrait they look alike!). His Ascendant is in Aquarius. You may see below the modern counterpart of his Renaissance chart:

We know as well Leonardo’s Da Vinci natal chart (his grand-father had noted the exact date and time of his birth and fortunately that specific note has been preserved). Da Vinci was a Taurus Sun and he had his Moon in the sign of Pisces (isn’t this an artist’s combination or what?). His Ascendant was in Sagittarius. You may see Leonardo’s chart below:

Da Vinci was born in a village near Florence and he lived in this illustrious city till his thirties (he was apprenticed to Verrocchio and received some form of patronage out of the tycoon Medici family). Things though were turning against the Medici’s and him personally (he was accused of sodomy) and thus in 1482 he moved to Milan, where he was very well  received by the Duke of the city Ludovico Sforza. The Duke was a Leo and Da Vinci a Taurus. Their solar signs are considered discordant (actually, they are discordant!). How comes then they matched so well (Da Vinci stayed at the Sforza’s court for 17 whole years)? Well, Synastry is much deeper than we think and it somehow moves in mysterious ways!

The Duke of Milan was a Leo. But Da Vinci was in a certain sense a Leo too! You see, he had his Sun in his Fifth House – and that is a potent domification, since the Sun is the ruler of the Fifth House! So definitely there was a common thread connecting them (Leonardo was orchestrating i.e. for the Duke  spectacular wedding ceremonies and other extravagant social events and happenings – putting on stage i.e mechanical “knights” moving on their own etc.)! Not to mention the fact that in their Synastry Leonardo’s Sun is “falling” in Sforza’s Second House (as you can see below). Thus,Leonardo was somehow “Taureanizing” the Duke of Milan – meaning that through their interaction Leonardo was activating in the Duke certain Taurean properties, turning largely Sforza (especially when Leonardo was dealing with him face to face) into the very sign he was!

Actually, we are dealing here with what I call  “latent” synastric elements  (you may see my relative “Sasstrology” article here ). A “latent” synastric element is a pivotal element in a Synastry but it is somehow “hidden”. Thus it is not easily perceived as a pivotal synastric element unless we somehow “extrapolate” it as such by spotting certain composite inter-connections within the charts of the two individuals and within their own Synastry!

Furthermore, an extremely unifying factor is stemming out of their Moons! They both had their Moon in the sign of Pisces (meaning that their “inner worlds” were largely composed of the same stuff and that they could instinctively connect and “feel” each other!).

And now the two “uber” beneficent / patronage kind of factors in this Synastry! First, the Duke’s Jupiter is standing exactly over Leonardo’s Moon (the Duke’s Jupiter is in the 3rd degree of Pisces and is synastrically forming a PARTILE conjunction to Leonardo’s Moon, in the 3rd degree of Pisces!) And second, the Duke’s Sun is “falling” in Leonardo’s Ninth House (this is an archetypal benefactor’s / “godfather’s” domification)! There are some other minor beneficent configurations too but we might as well rest our case here…

Thomas Gazis
Copyright: Thomas D. Gazis

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