Robert P. Blaschke


Uranus in Pisces: China and the SARS Virus

Almost immediately after the Uranus ingress into Pisces on the 10th of March, the wider world became aware of a new global health threat, the SARS (severe acute respiratory syndrome) virus, which was spreading from China to several other countries around the world, primarily through cough or sneeze droplets transmitted socially during air travel. Astrologers, expecting something sudden and chaotic at this sign ingress, recalled that between 1918 and 1920, the last time that Uranus entered the sign of the Fishes, a global influenza epidemic struck, leaving 22 million dead world-wide over a two-year period.

This astrologer suspects that the virus will be found to have originated in breeding places for water fowl, which are ruled by Pisces, and which are consumed regularly by the Chinese. Examining the progressed horoscope for the People's Republic of China (1 October 1949; 3:15 PM 8E; Beijing; source: The Book of World Horoscopes; Nick Campion; Chart #061), one finds that the Chinese progressed Mercury, presently at 02 Sagittarius 23, and ruler of the respiratory system, is being squared by the retrograde station of Uranus at 02 Pisces 49. This stationary aspect is within a one-degree orb between 4 April 2003 and 31 July 2003.

The dreadful news is that this transit Uranus square to the Chinese progressed Mercury will form a total of five times, the final partile aspect occurring on 27 January 2005, and still, between 16 October and 27 December 2005, the aspect returns to within less than a degree orb. I would not expect a cure, in the form of a vaccine, anytime soon. Recent news reports have stated that the virus is now mutating. Viruses, which are ruled by Pluto, and epidemics, which are ruled by both Mars and Pluto, would thus leave the astrologer to surmise that a similar planet formation such as this should be found in the Chinese nativity and, you guessed it, China has a Mars-Pluto conjunction at 14-17 Leo, with its progressed stationary retrograde Pluto at 18 Leo, in the degree of the August 1999 solar eclipse with the Fixed Grand Cross. This mother of all eclipses was the first since 1341 to also contain a Grand Cross, and, at that time, the Black Death in Europe killed 25 million souls between 1347 and 1352. This bubonic plague supposedly also came from China, spread along the trade routes by sailing ships containing sailors who had been bitten by rats aboard these vessels, the rats themselves being infected by insect bites of some sort.

Saturn, stationing later this year at 13 Cancer 14, will park precisely on the 6th house cusp of the Chinese horoscope (Porphyry house system), ruling public health in mundane astrology. Geodetically, measuring eastward from 0 Aries along the ecliptic from the Prime Meridian, this station of the greater malefic falls along a north-south line spanning the Yunnan, Sichuan and Gansu provinces of China. Look for these regions to be hardest hit by SARS in the Fall.

Global news analysts have already compared the SARS outbreak to the Soviet's Chernobyl nuclear reactor disaster, in the context of how it may cause massive political change in the country, in direct response to the mismanagement of the problem. China, with a secretive 8th house Libra Sun, has had much global anger directed toward it because of the initial cover-up of the severity of the outbreak by low-level regional Communist Party officials, who didn't want to risk damaging relationships with central Communist Party headquarters. With transit Pluto squaring the Chinese progressed Saturn three times this year, one would presume substantial governmental purges are coming as a result of this epidemic.

It is of note that the retrograde station of Neptune, occurring at 13 Aquarius 11 on May 13th, will be forming a stationary quincunx to the Chinese Saturn, exact within three minutes of arc. In their defense, the Chinese could not have seen this coming, as is the obfuscated nature of the 150-degree aspect. Political shake-ups in China are a certainty, and all the way up to the top, as transit Uranus is forming three squares to the Chinese progressed Sun, presently at 01 Sagittarius 16, between 3 April 2003 and 9 February 2004. This aspect additionally returns to within a one-degree orb between 27 September 2004 and 2 January 2005.

Saturn will resume its transit of the 6th house of the Chinese horoscope between 9 June 2004 and 3 September 2005, and again from 19 February 2006 until 19 May 2006, and much effort will have to be put into restructuring its public health system, and educating its poorer and illiterate citizenry about disease control measures. The USA, with its national Sun also at 13 Cancer, conjunct the Chinese 6th house cusp, will play a pivotal role in helping the Chinese get this epidemic eventually under control. Watch for many CDC officials from our country going to China to help in the fight against this scourge.

The Chinese public, ruled by the Moon in mundane astrology, have not yet crested in their river of panic. When the Chinese progressed Moon, presently at 19 Capricorn 18, arrives at a conjunction with the national Jupiter on 31 July 2003, as the four-month stationary square of Uranus to their progressed Mercury is finally exhausting itself, the world should witness an even greater widespread anxiety amongst the populace there. The Chinese progressed Midheaven, presently at 20 Capricorn 38, has recently entered the Virgo decan of that sign, signaling the requirement for the authorities to attend to health concerns, and, as that progressed Moon crosses over the progressed MC in a little over a month from now, the demands on the Communist Party government by the people to stop this plague will be feverishly outspoken.

May 15-16, 2003 Lunar Eclipse @ 24 Taurus-Scorpio:

 Kim Jong Il's Nuclear Brinkmanship and the Fate of North Korea

As we enter eclipse season once again, the concerned mundane astrologer researches the degrees of the upcoming lunar and solar eclipses, and compares them to the national horoscopes of any relevant nations where these degrees fall prominent, such as on the angles or on the Lights. For the next lunar eclipse, we need look no further than North Korea (9 September 1948; 12:00 PM 9E; P'yongyang; source: ), which has 25 Scorpio 02 rising, placing this May 16th eclipse smack on its horizon, exact within eight minutes of arc. The North Korean progressed Moon has just left secretive Scorpio and ingressed into Sagittarius, the sign of foreign relationships, within the last three weeks. This isolated rogue nation, now 54 years old, will have a secondary progressed Moon return on 27 June 2003, ushering in a new 27 1/3 year era for its people.

This angular lunar eclipse should bring about confrontational events that will make it quite clear to Mr Kim Jong Il that if he should foolishly proceed any further with this absurd nuclear brinkmanship game with the United States, much tougher measures will follow, and the combined diplomatic and economic strength of China, Russia, Japan, South Korea and the USA will continue to squeeze him like a python until he capitulates. Transit Saturn will conjunct the North Korean Uranus, itself in the powerful cardinal ingress degree of 0 Cancer, on June 6th, and one can hope that this delusional leader will read the handwriting on the wall and give up the uranium and plutonium enrichment projects, as well as defuse his existing nuclear weapons with full intrusive verification by the IAEA. The United States Navy, in partnership with the Japanese, has enough nuclear submarines in the Sea of Japan, and in the North Pacific Ocean, to turn P'yongyang into a parking lot should Mr Kim ever cross the line with his trigger finger.

As I have written in previous newsletters, Uranus is stationing two years in a row opposite the North Korean Saturn at 28 Leo 46, setting up a pattern of continual confrontation to get this pariah nation to toe the line. With this planetary influence occurring during 2002-03, there can be no negotiating strategy other than holding a howitzer to Mr Kim's head as he points his smaller pistol at us. As transit Pluto stationed at 19 Sagittarius 57, conjunct the North Korean Jupiter within two minutes of arc, there has been intense diplomatic pressure put on P'yongyang from several nations in the region. Kim Jong Il  (15 February 1942; noon chart;  Khabarovsk, USSR; source: asia/, born at a conjunction of the malefics, Mars and Saturn, also has a natal Sun square to Uranus, making him quite unpredictable. Additionally clouding his vision is transit Neptune forming seven squares to the North Korean progressed Sun, between March of 2001 and December of 2003. One can hope that by the end of the year, this crisis will finally be resolved.

The most opportune window of time for Mr Kim to simultaneously save face and help his starving people, by scrapping his nuclear program and thus receiving renewed oil shipments, food and economic help, will be when transit Jupiter crosses over the North Korean Midheaven, at 07 Virgo 06, between 24 September 2003 and 4 October 2003. Just prior to this, however, as Pluto stations while holding a final square to the North Korean Sun between 9 August 2003 and 17 September 2003, the world will hold their collective breath as President Bush and the North Koreans go eyeball to eyeball in an intense standoff. Mr Bush, with his progressed Sun now applying to a conjunction with his natal Mars, has enough fortitude these days to stare down anyone whose interests threaten the national security of the United States. Additionally, as the USA progressed Mars stations retrograde, and as the ruler of the USA chart IC, any perceived threat to internal homeland security will be confronted forcefully.

The May 30-31 Solar Eclipse @ 9 Gemini: 

Conjunct the USA Uranus, Unrest in Jordan, and Farewell to Mugabe of Zimbabwe

Two weeks later, the world will experience a New Moon solar eclipse at 09 Gemini 19, falling within twenty-four minutes of arc of a conjunction with the USA Uranus. Coming as it does on the heels of the USA progressed Moon squaring our national Neptune, which has confounded and delayed the eventual discovery of Iraq's chemical and biological weapons stash, in addition to providing a two-month run for the theater of the absurd for conspiratorial imaginations, this eclipse activation of the USA national Uranus should produce a sudden discovery of these weapons, and thus a vindicating closure for the prime cause of the military conflict.

This astrologer would be remiss in his analytical duty to not see an additional possible manifestation of this solar eclipse activating a sixth house USA Uranus in Gemini: the SARS epidemic suddenly reaching the pulmonary health of the American public. Mercury in the People's Republic of China's national horoscope, located at 13 Libra 10 in the tropical Zodiac, is square to the USA national Sun within nine minutes of arc. Additionally, the USA Sibly chart sixth house ruler, Venus, is found at 03 Cancer 06, with transit Saturn about to conjoin it between 20 June 2003 and 5 July 2003, and this Venus receives an exact quincunx from the Chinese national Moon, which is at 03 Aquarius 10. With the transit Nodal axis spanning the USA Sibly chart 6th and 12th houses, this epidemic could eventually reach our shores in a big way. The path of totality for this upcoming eclipse is at quite an extreme northern latitude, but it does link China with Canada. One can only hope that the CDC in Atlanta is closely monitoring all incoming flights from Canada into the USA for virus transmission. As transit Pluto moves into position to oppose the USA Mars three times in 2004, and with these two planets ruling epidemics and viruses, one can now see potential storm clouds gathering.

The nation of Jordan (25 May 1946; 12:00 PM 2E; Amman; source: The Book of World Horoscopes; Nick Campion; Chart #174), with its Midheaven at 09 Gemini 58, will most likely receive a strong shock wave from this upcoming solar eclipse. There have been as many as 300,000 exiled Shia Iraqis living in Amman, originally there to escape the brutality of the now fallen regime. Living in poverty, and surrounded by the contempt of the wealthier Sunni Jordanians, tensions have been mounting since the end of the Iraq War for them to return home. One would expect some unrest to hit the Jordanian capital, perhaps also as a result of further disclosure of the extent of cooperation with America that King Abdullah II exercised during the war, while simultaneously attempting to control the militant Islamic dissent within his nation. With Jordan's national Venus at 01 Cancer 32, conjunct the USA Venus/Jupiter conjunction, this country will remain our loyal ally, yet, during 2004, when transit Uranus squares the Jordanian national Sun at 03 Gemini 35 three times, the Hashemite Kingdom could be in for a turbulent year.

The southern African nation of Zimbabwe, formerly Rhodesia (1 June 1979; 12:00 AM 2E; Harare; source: The Book of World Horoscopes; Nick Campion; Chart #402), has its national Sun at 09 Gemini 51, and is another likely candidate for eclipse activation later this month. President Robert Mugabe, who, in recent years, has run the country into the ground through private property seizures, overprinting of currency, and economy-strangling price controls, is being moderately pressured by the South African president, Thabo Mbeki, to step aside and retire. Ironically, South Africa also has its national Sun under the rays of this eclipse, at 09 Gemini 13 (31 May 1961; 12:00 AM 2E; Pretoria; source: The Book of World Horoscopes; Nick Campion; Chart #308). Zimbabwe is broke, its rural population is starving, other nations are cutting off its electrical supplies because of millions of dollars in unpaid bills, and something has to change. The Mugabe regime has tortured protesters, redistributed white-owned farm land to blacks, which subsequently reduced agricultural yields by two thirds, and has become an economic albatross to the other nations in the region, whose economies are being pulled down by Mugabe's policies. This solar eclipse on the Zimbabwean and South African national Suns should finally motivate President Mbeki to show the old dictator to the exit door. 

Israel and Palestine: The End of the Intifada

 and Renewed Hope For Peace?

As Saturn stationed on Israel's 8th house cusp of 0 Gemini (Porphyry house system), and the Palestinian intifada erupted in September of 2000, at that time in America there was fairly evenly divided political support for both the security concerns of the Israelis, and the rights of the people of Palestine living under Israeli occupation. However, after September 11th, when the USA got a taste of the insidious brutality of radical fundamentalist Islamic terrorism, the Palestinian cause became perceived, to many Americans, as just another example of violent Arab extremism which must be crushed by Western military superiority. During this intifada, Israel (14 May 1948; 4:32 PM 2E; Tel Aviv; source: The Book of World Horoscopes; Nick Campion; Chart #164) has had its progressed Mars, presently at 25 Virgo 03, in a long and bloody square to its national Uranus at 24 Gemini 21, the aspect mercifully leaving the one degree separating orb on 11 November 2003. The sudden and shocking violence of each suicide bombing, with the killing and maiming of innocent Israeli civilians, has severely undermined the Palestinian cause around the world. As Saturn exits the Israeli 8th house on 17 June 2003, one can only pray that this insane violence will cease.

Now, after victory in Iraq, the American government is turning its attention to the creation of a Palestinian state by 2005, and the resolution of the thorny disputes between Israel and the Arabs over settlements, boundaries, return of refugees, and the dual claims to Jerusalem. Will there be peace in the Middle East? If one scrutinizes this progressed Israeli horoscope, one finds that their progressed Venus stationed retrograde in November of 1967, the year of the Six-Day War between Israel and the Arab nations. As this progressed Venus stationed at 11 Cancer 09, it held a lengthy square to the Israeli Neptune between July of 1958 and October of 1976, thoroughly confusing all of the diplomatic efforts to return land to the Arabs taken in this war. This progressed Venus, ruler of the Israeli national horoscope which has the karmic 30th degree of Libra rising, will not station direct until December of 2010. Sober astrologers would thus conclude that which was begun in 1967 will not be resolved until 2010.

Additionally, as the progressed retrograde Israeli Venus stations direct at 24 Gemini 38, it will hold an absurdly long stationary conjunction to their national Uranus from 5 December 2004 until 20 March 2017. How could any nation, with their progressed ruler in a stationary conjunction with Uranus for over 12 years, expect to have any lasting stability whatsoever? For this reason, sadly, the United States may become repeatedly frustrated during the next two years as it tries, with all good intentions, to broker a resolution to these long-standing disputes. The Israeli progressed Moon, presently at 09 Leo 58, will form a conjunction to the national Pluto between 14 June 2003 and 2 August 2003, with the exact conjunction taking place on July 8th. I am afraid to say that it appears as if the violence will only increase, and unless and until some drastic and radical intervention by America takes place, such as the U.S. and Israeli militaries forcefully disarming Hamas, and destroying the bomb-making factories in the Arab region, so that the suicide bombings will cease, we will witness endless blood spilling between these ancient Biblical enemies. One need only read the Book of Ezekiel in the Old Testament to gain an understanding about how long this conflict has festered in these people's bloodlines.

In the chart for the Proclamation of Palestinian Independence (15 November 1988; 12:40 AM GMT; Jerusalem; source: The Book of World Horoscopes; Nick Campion; Chart #240), we find transit Saturn approaching the Midheaven of 08 Cancer 46. Three conjunctions will occur between and 13 August 2003 and 30 April 2004, and some kind of framework must now emerge to legitimize the Palestinian State. The chart ruler, Venus, of the 08 Libra 13 Ascendant, presently at 07 Scorpio 19, is progressing into a trine with this MC, perfecting on 8 July 2004. It should be at this time that the Palestinians finally realize that peace with Israel is the only way that they will attain Statehood. The young hotheads of Hamas and the various other militant groups, who will always be out muscled by the might of the U.S.-backed Israeli military, and with their continual frustration so clearly symbolized by the Mars in Aries square to Saturn in Capricorn in the Palestinian horoscope, will have to finally put down their guns and suicide-bomber vests, and join the real world if there is ever to be any peace at all.

There is a triple conjunction of Saturn, Uranus and Neptune in this Proclamation chart for the Nation of Palestine. Every fourth Uranus-Neptune conjunction, of which an individual cycle lasts for about 170 years, Saturn joins to comprise a heavenly trio. This 680-year Super Cycle is closely tied to the rise and fall of Islam. A conjunction of these three planets occurred in 625 AD, near to the recapturing of the Cross of Christ and recovery of Jerusalem from the Persians by Emperor Heraclius; and close to Mohammed's capture of Mecca and the exposition of the principles of Moslem faith written to all the rulers of the world. By the time of the next conjunction of these three planets in 1306 AD, several centuries of the Crusades had fought off the aggressive expansion of the Muslims into Europe, and Islam went into decline. Now, since the last triple conjunction of these planets in 1988-89, we are observing a new pattern emerge - the ultimate integration of Islam into the global family. Thus the 7th to 14th centuries can be seen as Thesis; the 14th to 21st centuries as Antithesis; and the 21st century onward as Synthesis. There will be no peace in the world until this occurs.

As Uranus moves into position to form five squares to the progressed Palestinian Sun between April of 2005 and December of 2006, their freedom from occupation will certainly come, but it will not be a smooth road. As with Israel, who will have her stationary progressed ruler conjunct Uranus for 12 years, the Palestinians will be in for many surprises and unexpected changes along the road to Statehood.

Mars Retrograde Thrice Squaring the USA 6th House Uranus:

As the Ranks of Unemployed Rise, Will SARS Spread to the USA?

The planet Mars will station retrograde on 29 July 2003 at 10 Pisces 08. Then, after arriving at its perihelion while opposite the Sun on 28 August 2003 in the 6th degree of Pisces, Mars will then station direct on 27 September 2003 at 00 Pisces 07. Thus, any of us with natal or progressed planets between 0 and 10 degrees of the mutable signs (Gemini-Virgo-Sagittarius-Pisces) will receive three transit aspects from Mars during a three-to-five month period over the Summer and into the Fall. The United States is no exception, as with its national Uranus at 08 Gemini 55, Americans will experience three squares of Mars to this 6th house Uranus.

One can conjure up visions of angry unemployed persons pushed to the edge of their patience and personal composure, as the U.S. economy further stagnates with Saturn transiting the national Venus and Jupiter during June and July, and then stations, within five minutes of arc, conjunct the USA Sun in late October. America is in for some hard times this year and next, and we will have to try and help those less fortunate than ourselves. If you are securely employed, or are financially set, it shall be your spiritual duty to give to food banks or other religious charities which routinely help the poor and needy.

An alternate scenario would be for the SARS virus to suddenly seize the nation (Mars in Pisces, ruling infections due to weak immune systems, square to Uranus in Gemini, ruling the lungs, in the mundane house of public health, the 6th). This dreadful thought can only be comforted by the length of time involved with these three Mars squares (15 July to 4 November 2003). Further substantiating this potential destabilization of our society is the fourth and fifth transits of Uranus over the USA progressed Sun, occurring on 26 October 2003 and 28 November 2003, while Uranus stations direct within a one degree orb of this progressed Sun between 18 September 2003 and 3 January 2004. With Saturn in Cancer, the elderly will be most vulnerable to this potential scourge, and, should these outbreaks occur, one suspects that they would originate in nursing homes for the elderly. All I can think of as protection against this would be for people to take their aged parents or grandparents out of managed care facilities, health permitting, and bring them home with them. Let us pray for the safety of this country over the next year.


Source notes:

The Economist (various recent issues).
Bernard Grun, The Timetables of History, New York: Simon & Schuster, 1975.
Nick Campion, The Book of World Horoscopes, Bristol, UK: Cinnabar Books, 1996.

Robert P. Blaschke, Astrologer Earthwalk School of Astrology
PO Box 832 Ashland OR 97520 USA 541.488.7462
Author: Astrology: A Language of Life Volume I - Progressions (ISBN 0-9668978-0-3) Volume II - Sabian Aspect Orbs (ISBN 0-9668978-1-1) Volume III - A Handbook for the Practicing Astrologer (ISBN 0-9668978-2-X)