Astrology Secrets Revealed by ERIC FRANCIS

The Chart of Israel


August 4, 2006 (with charts)


Dear Friends, Near and Far:


This is a good moment to take advantage of a very handy property of astrology: the cool detachment that it allows; and the perspective that it grants.


It finally occurred to me to check the chart of Israel last night, so I pulled my copy of the Book of World Horoscopes by Nick Campion off the shelf (this is the definitive book, if you're looking for charts of countries and big events in world history, and it was recently revised and re-released), and learned that the time of Israeli independence is known to the minute: A meeting chaired by Ben Gurion that began when he struck his gavel promptly at 4 pm in Tel Aviv, on May 14, 1948. I don't have a lot to say about this chart at this point, but mainly what I want to point out is there can be no doubt this is indeed the chart of Israel, and that it's very active right now. Indeed, it's all too rich for words. Have a look:


Look up to and the to left: the 10th/11th house, which is covered by Cancer and Leo. We have four planets up there: the Moon, Pluto, Saturn and Mars in Leo. The 10th house, and the 11th, are the house where you make your impression on the world. I would say that a Leo Moon, a Pluto- Saturn conjunction, plus Mars, all make quite the impression. The Moon is the ruler of the Cancer 10th house cusp but does not stray far from the cusp, showing up a few degrees later in the very next sign.


It is the Leo Moon that characterizes the outer personality of Israel: a child, needing to do the work of an adult, but needing all the attention of a child.


Sliding over just a little bit, we have the Saturn-Pluto conjunction. I could have guessed that Israel has this conjunction: it's nature is intense, authoritarian, conservative and driven. We saw the result of another Saturn-Pluto contact in the events of Sept. 11, 2001 -- that time, it was the opposition. Conjunctions and oppositions of Saturn and Pluto don't happen often. The related opposition to this conjunction occurred in the 1960s. So the 'new' and 'full' phases occur once every 20 years or so -- pretty rare. The exact dates of this particular conjunction was Aug. 11, 1947 (one time, not three). The next conjunction was Nov. 8, 1982. Unfortunately, these direct aspects of Saturn and Pluto are almost always associated with the rise of arch-conservatism of some kind; with philosophies of orthodoxy and purism; and with a lot of destruction.


The ascendant is revealing. Libra is rising. No matter what you do, things look good. You could take a big, moody scorpion born with Libra rising and everyone would want it for a pet.


Israel has this charmed quality -- one of the most striking things about this little country is how well it's able to maintain its image of righteousness even amidst the most horrid situations, and no matter who is right or wrong. Israel always makes an excellent, reasoned case -- that is Libra at work.


However, behind the scenes is Neptune in the 12th house. It is close to the ascendant, in Libra as well. It is rising, so it dominates the chart in a way, but because it's Neptune and because it's in the 12th house, it has that "it's there but it's not" property that works so beautifully for both Neptune and the 12th. What is the implication? Hmmm, Neptune has several qualities: one is an illusory nature; Neptune grants and shape-shifting quality, enhancing that image-making nature of the Libra ascendant. The other is a kind of 'magical' quality that allows it to project its image of itself outward, and then it takes over your brain. With Neptune, you just may find yourself believing what someone else believes, no matter how off-the-beam it is: for example, we all know the way to happiness, truth and enlightenment is Coca-Cola. Advertising is a Neptune critter.


One other feature in this chart worth writing about is the 8th house Taurus Sun. The 8th house grants an affinity for crisis. This is, after all, the house of death and sex, and it can translate to the house of "all is fair in love and war." But whatever may be fair or not, if you have an 8th house Sun, you don't have a boring life -- at whatever cost that comes. It's better to state your price, and state your goals, so you don't get too carried away. Israel has stated its goals, but not its price. That the Taurus Sun makes a square to all of those Leo planets tells you something about Israel, and about the extremely, internally tense nature of squares. Especially when they are set off by transits, as this chart is, to put it mildly.


We can see we have a chart that describes the condition and the personality of Israel, but what is more impressive is how much Leo there is in the sky right now, at what may turn out to be the decisive moment in Israel's history so far. As we all know, Saturn is in Leo right now, so Israel is heading not only for a Saturn return (its second) but also Saturn conjunct Pluto. Plus, Neptune in Aquarius is and has been opposing Israel's natal Pluto and Saturn for quite a while, which does not exactly lend itself to a realistic perspective.


The entire Pluto in Leo generation (1937-1957, which includes some pre-war babies, and then the Baby Boom) is having Saturn transit over its natal Pluto right now, though only those born around the first eight years or so have experienced the transit directly; for the rest, it will arrive over the next year or so. This, by the way, is a point worth developing in an article, and I'm currently brewing a Planet Waves Weekly essay on the subject; we will look for a question here that highlights the theme as well.


Let's just say that transiting Saturn conjunct natal Pluto is not bringing out the more liberal and life-affirming properties of Leo; just like the conjunction in a natal chart, it's likely to be associated with a hard-line attitude, but what we're going to see, I think, is how far this attitude goes before it goes too far. The discovery will likely be that it's all gone too far. (On this topic, I nearly fell off my chair Wednesday, when I saw a copy of the London Times in the café where I was writing this column, and noticed that Tony Blair gave a speech in Los Angeles of all places saying that we had gone a little too far on the military part of the "War on Terror" and that maybe a more moderate approach would be a good idea. I guess better late than never, but how much better is a good question.)


As regards this Leo collection of planets in the Israel chart, the August 9 Full Moon chart is pretty much the kicker, so I'll include it. Here you go. Keep a squirt bottle nearby, you will need to douse yourself off.


The Full Moon can go off like, well, like a lunatic, and this event is all over Israel's chart. Note that Saturn is one degree away from exact return; it's closely conjunct Pluto; and then along comes the Sun and lights up the whole thing. Then, in the other direction, we have a conjunction of the Moon in Aquarius, with Neptune in Aquarius (retrograde) conjunct Ceres retrograde. Let's just put it this way. The script writers in Tel Aviv and Washington DC need to do a little work on the script if they want a happy ending. I suggest we all keep our awareness turned up to 11 and keep the light on the situation.


This Full Moon leads promptly into the exact opposition of Saturn and Neptune (Aug. 31), then in to a series of eclipses, one of which (solar) opposes Israel's natal Mars to about one degree of exactitude. Ah yes, if I ruled the world, politicians would all be sent to an island with a lot of video games. For good behavior, they would get a chess set.


Today's Astrology Secrets Revealed looks at a variety of questions, most of them fairly personal, but before we get there, I'd like to invite you over to Planet Waves, where we have a daily photo and blog, lots of articles, and two new August horoscopes posted. The ASR (Astrology Secrets Revealed) project is sponsored by your subscriptions to Planet Waves Weekly, so please check out that excellent horoscope and astrology service, and please do sign up. It's guaranteed and it's very highly regarded by our readers.


Today's edition of ASR was prepared with the help of Paloma Todd, Arwynne O'Neill and Rachael Stillman at Planet Waves, and Vanessa Lawton and Deirdre Ahern, our web producers at Thank you all. Thanks for reading!


Yours & truly,