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 by Meira B. Epstein, C.A. NCGR-PAA

Like most astrologers, at times of momentous world events, I rush to my charts and my sources to see what astrology has to say about it, and I find plenty.

 While other people struggle to understand the root of evil intentions, look for explanation in politics and seek spiritual solace in the idea of a merciful God, we, astrologers, are confronted with both similar and yet, very different view of historic events.  And this view is not making it any easier to bear.

At times like these, the universal and timeless question of the connection between the fate of the individual and the collective comes back to mind in the most powerful and vivid way.  In our century, we have struggled to understand it with regard to World War II, the Holocaust, the A-bomb, the on-going conflict in the Middle East, and the list goes on and on. The questions are not new, and astrologers have tried to answer them in various ways. The purpose of this article is not to debate these metaphysical, philosophical or technical dilemmas. My own thoughts and views are not always in agreement with what most people believe in, so I will limit this to the technical astrological aspects of these horrific events. Astrology is best at describing ‘how’ but not ‘why’ or ‘for what purpose’, so this is what I will do here.

In 1999 I gave a lecture titled “Mundane is Personal”, in which I laid out the principles and techniques of Mundane Astrology. Most students of astrology do not have much interest in this field and think of it as boring and irrelevant to their own lives.  My purpose was to arouse people’s interest and show how mundane astrology is relevant to our lives just as the personal one, and this is even more true at this present time.

So here are my technical comments. They are not supposed to cover every possible explanation, but only point to the most obvious and strong ones, in a brief overview manner.

When a negative event occurs, most astrologers look for the explanation in the chart of the moment, usually expecting to find an obvious adverse planetary picture affecting the Angles, or some other very exact difficult aspect, but experience shows that this is not always the case. The moment of the bombing of the World Trade Center is a good example of that. My approach has always been: ‘Who did it happen to?’  In other words, look for a natal, or inception chart for the entity that was directly affected by the event.  I find that this is where the explanation lies, and the chart of the moment just ties into it.

 Another important question that comes up when dealing with historic charts is the issue of the Precession of the Equinoxes in the Tropical Zodiac. As you know, this amounts to 1 degree in about 71 years, which is added to all the points in the original chart.  The practice is to use transits to these precessed new points. My findings are that transits affect both the original degrees, as well as the precessed ones, as you can see in some of the charts for this event.

 The inception charts that I look at for the current events are (see charts below):

1) USA, Declaration of Independence, July 4th, 1776 (NS),  5:10 pm LMT, Philadelphia, Pennsylvania, 75W10, 39N57.

2) NYC - New York City, Consolidation of the 5 Boroughs, January 1, 1898, 0:01 am.

3) Manhattan Island, First Distinct Form of Government in New Amsterdam, February 12th, 1653 (New Style), New York City (73W59, 40N45). No time - noon used.

4) Opening of the World Trade Center, April 4th, 1973, New York City. 

(Sue Simmons posted on the Astrolife internet list a time of 3 pm, from the New York Times archives)

The most obvious astrological factors in the current events are the Saturn-Pluto cycle and transits, the Jupiter and the Mars transits, the Gemini-Sagittarius axis and the 2001 June and July eclipses.

To begin with, the mid Gemini-Sagittarius degrees are prevalent in all the above charts.

The USA ASC of 12 Sagittarius  (+3 degrees of precession which gives about 15 Sag) is now getting the full impact of the Transits and Stations of Saturn and Pluto.

NYC has Pluto in Gemini in the 9th house opposite Saturn, Mars and Venus in Sag in the 3rd house, and the Precession adds about 1 degree to all the chart points. These house positions provide the meaning of international foreign secretive terrorism related to means of transportation.  I have watched this chart before, and every time this third house was affected there were serious events in NYC related to cultural/religious/ethnic/transportation situation.  More recently transiting Mars made his station in those Sagittarius degrees and I expected to here something, and when Mars moved into Capricorn I was a bit surprised that nothing significant had happened. Now it looks like Mars just “waited” another degree or so to trigger the total eclipse in Cancer on June 21, 2001. That eclipse fell close to the 8th house Sun and Jupiter of the USA, as well as the Sun of G. W. Bush. In the event chart, the Moon is at 28 Gemini, opposite the Mars in the NYC chart.

The “Manhattan Island” chart has ASC 15 Gemini, Pluto at 12 Gemini, and MC 21 Aquarius. Precession adds almost 5 degrees to that. The original degrees are now getting the transits of Saturn, Pluto and Uranus. The symbolism is obvious here too, and does not require any explanation. It is interesting to note that the WTC was built in the area that was New Amsterdam.

The Opening of the WTC chart has Saturn at 16 Gemini, and a 3 pm time has it angular in the 10th house.  Every astrologer will see the symbolism immediately: First, now is the “Saturn Return” for that foundation. Second, the powerful symbolism of the “Gemini Twins”, and as we all know, the buildings were called the Twin Towers. In the ancient myth of Castor and Pollux, the brothers were inseparable from each other, and when Castor died and Pollux was inconsolable, he was allowed by Zeus to share his life with his brother by being half the time above the earth and the other half beneath it, and so did these two towers. They lived and fell and died together. Another ‘brotherly’ symbolism is found in the fact that two brothers, David and Nelson Rockefeller were behind the building of these towers, as part of a plan to rebuild lower Manhattan into a financial district and raise the real-estate value of the area. At the time the towers were nicknamed ‘David’ and ‘Nelson’.  David was the head of Chase Manhattan Bank which had just build its headquarters there, and Nelson was the governor of New York State, who helped by getting the Port Authority of New York and New Jersey as an investor.  The WTC has been owned and operated by the Port Authority ever since, and this is another Gemini symbolism of transportation and communication.  The towers were also a hub for trains as well as television and radio transmitters, and the phone company.

Additional Comments:

1) The USA chart has controversy surrounding it, as some astrologers use a Gemini rising chart for that date, and other variations exist too. Campion’s Book of World Horoscopes has ample documentation and rationale for all of them. I use the one known as the Sibly chart, with 12 Sagittarius rising, for 5:10 pm LMT.

2) Pluto was in Gemini roughly between 1882 to 1914. That was the era when motorized transportation developed, fueled by the oil found in the Middle East.

3) Pluto-Saturn cycles, such as the current one, are usually connected with very hard times for many people during war time.

4) A few yeas ago I gave a lecture called “The Seamy Side of Sagittarius”, in which I made the point that Sagittarius also has a dark side that has to do with ethnic and race issues. Sagittarius is known for its symbolism of freedom, religion, morality and interest in foreign cultures. On the dark side these become intolerance, bigotry, xenophobia, and racism of all sorts. The USA with its Sagittarius ASC has definitely had its share of wrestling with these demons throughout its history. At the same time, the USA has become the beacon of freedom for the world, as in a process of personal growth, from the moment of its birth, expressed in its Declaration of Independence. The astrological truth that in this life on earth we are supposed to learn how to ‘do our chart’ the right way is certainly true for nations as it is for individuals. Pluto in Sagittarius is definitely driving this point home for the whole world. Other Pluto manifestations are terrorism, malice, the invisible dark side and loss of innocence, and we have now seen all that in the plotting by secret international terrorist groups to kill thousands of people, and the loss of innocence of the American people who are waking up to a new reality on their own soil.  The time for Transformation has come.

5) George W. Bush: July 6, 1946, 7:26 AM EDT (+4), New Haven, Connecticut, 72W55' 43", 41N18' 29"

In Bush's astro-cartography map his Mars-MC line goes directly through Kabul and Karachi (Afghanistan & Pakistan) !  This natal Mars at 9 Virgo makes an exact Octile (45 degree aspect) to his MC at 24 Libra, and is currently getting the square from Saturn.

Looking back at the inauguration chart for G.W. Bush reveals Mars conjunct the 7th House of ‘open enemies’. What an ominous sign of things to come!  (Chart data: Taking the oath on January 1, 2001, 12:04 PM EST +5, Washington DC.  Source: media at time of event)

© Copyright Meira B. Epstein, All Rights Reserved.

Data Sources:

Nicholas Campion, The Book of World Horoscopes. Revised 2nd edition, 1995, published by Cinnabar Books, P.O. Box 1071, Bristol BS99 1HE,

Carolyn R. Dodson, Horoscopes of The U.S. States & Cities, 4th printing in 1980 by ACS, PO Box 16297, San Diego, CA 92116, USA.  First published by AFA, 1975.

For the WTC:  http://www.skyscraper.org

For G.W. Bush:  http://astrodatabank.com