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February 18, 2002

In this issue:
1. Using aspects to your advantage.
2. New NCGR chapter in Hampton Roads
3. For those who wanted to receive the ACG lecture tapes.


As I observe new students moving into the field of Astrology, one of the least
understood and most difficult concept to integrate seems to be the interpretation of aspects, both natally and in forecasting. There are some basic rules that help to look at them from a more detached perspective. Planets are energies and can be used positively or negatively. Even though some planets have a kind of reputation for being bad guys... i.e. Saturn, Mars, Pluto .... their energies are absolutely necessary to the human experience. Further, they have a positive side to them, without which we could not function. When two planets are arranged in such a way in a chart that they present a challenge to integrate their energies, we say they are "afflicted" (a very archaic term).
Most text books paint a very negative portrayal of how this manifests in the personality. And, indeed, most of the time they do seem quite negative. I like Demetra George’s use of the words "unskilled" and "skilled"in regard to use of these energies. So if we approach negative aspects with that kind of language, it can make it clearer WHY people have a struggle in integration of conflicting planetary aspects.

For example, let us say that a person has a square aspect (squares are very
challenging) between Mercury and Mars. In the first place, they would most likely be in conflicting signs, unless it were an out-of-sign square. The signs have to be assessed first. I.e. what is the "need" of expression in each sign. So, to go further with the example, let’s imagine the Mercury is in Libra and the Mars is in Capricorn. This is actually the source of the basic premise regarding squares... they are always between signs, theoretically (let’s not forget the out-of-sign ones), that have conflicting needs. The Libra need is to be fair, conciliatory and diplomatic. Hence, Libra having a reputation for indecisiveness. Mercury is a way of speech and the thought processes. So thought
and speech has those qualities. Mars is primarily energy and how it is expressed. In the negative expression, it can indicate excess in the way the energy comes across to others ...hence, anger, aggression, impatience, etc.

When Mars is in conflict with Mercury, it can indicate excess energy being given to speech or thought, and so a negative expression can be arguing, defensiveness, impatience, even excess talking. But when Mars is in Capricorn, it is ambitious and organized. Some natural ability to act with decisiveness and authority is inherent. Imagine the conflict between an indecisive, diplomatic Libra Mercury and an authoritarian, very decisive Capricorn Mars. At first, when it is used in an "unskilled" way, it may seem the person is short-tempered and feisty. Mostly it would be aggravation with oneself because the conflict would be getting in the way of meeting each of the needs for expression. Frustration is the result. But as one matures, the two energies can be integrated, and a wonderful blend of the two could result. That is why it
is never a good idea to assume that a person is using aspects in any way at all.
If you interpret it as potential, you are leaving room for giving the person credit for having enough wisdom to grow from the results of "unskilled" expression. We always learn from our feedback. Furthermore, an aspect does not stand alone. It is usually part of a complex pattern of interlocking aspects which all will affect each other. It takes a lot
of skill to be able to blend this intelligently. Astrology is very, very complex, and it can be said of it more than many other disciplines that a little knowledge is a dangerous thing. If you are a student, it would be most wise to make sure you have a thorough grounding in its principles before hanging out a shingle.


The Virginia Beach, Norfolk, Portsmouth, Chesapeake, Hampton, Newport News area
(Hampton Roads) is about to start a regional chapter of NCGR (National Council for Geocosmic Research). We will be holding the first meeting in mid-March... exact date still being determined. Since the NCGR dues goes up on April 1st, we want to make our chapter a reality before that date. We need ten paid members to form a chapter. If you want to be on the list to be informed of our first meeting, or want more information, just let me know.


There was a retrograde Mercury on February 2nd. I knew that, so I really bent over backward to make sure the taping equipment was going to do the job. First, my mic mixer broke, so to compensate, I took two microphones so that it would be stereo rather than monaurall. One mic was clipped to my blouse and the other hand-held. The end result is that for some unknown reason, there is a kind of "feedback" in the tapes. Like someone speaking too loudly. The tapes are clear and loud. But it can be annoying. Furthermore, after the break I forgot to turn the recorder on. I simply added the appropriate information in the right place when I got home.

I am a perfectionist and have the moon in Virgo, so I can’t charge full price for these tapes, since I find them annoying to listen to. They are on the Psychology of using Astro*Carto*Graphy, so it is a rare subject to find. I have packaged the two tapes in an album and the handouts are bound into a booklet. If you want them, I’m selling them at just a tad bit over cost plus postage... which is $7 plus $3 postage, or $10 total. Several of you mentioned that you wanted them and asked about ordering instructions, so to save time, I’m putting it here. Send check or money order to me or use paypal on my web site. I have a lot of other tapes of lectures and seminars, but have never been very efficient in organizing them. From now on, that will change.

One more thing. Does anyone have the birth data for Andrea Yates, the Texas mom
who drowned her five children?

That’s it for now. Happy Presidents’ Day!

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