Astrological Musings

The Moirae: the Triple Nature of Fate and Planetary Cycles


In ancient times, humans were more intimately connected to the tides of nature and consequently felt more subject to the whim of fate than we do today. The ancient Greeks viewed Fate as three sisters that made up a single triple goddess: the Moirae, most likely from the ancient word “moera” meaning a phase. The Moirae did not decide the fate of humans, but they supervised it.

Each of the three Moirae, or Fates, were represented by a phase of the moon: Clotho spun the thread of life from the cosmos and was represented by the New Moon, goddess of the spring;
Lachesis measured the thread of life and assigned each man his destiny; she was represented by the Full Moon, goddess of summer; and Atropos, the Crone-goddess of autumn represented by the waning Moon, who cut the thread of life with the “abhorred shears.”

The triple nature of fate is mirrored in the working of the planetary cycles that we call “transits.” These cycles occur when planets in their current orbits make an angle to planets in our birthcharts, creating an atmosphere where change and transition can occur. The hard angle transits (90 and 180 degrees or squares and oppositions) can be challenging events that force us to make changes in our lives. The harmonious transits (60 and 120 degrees or sextiles and trines) tend to open up doorways that encourage growth rather than force it. In any case, these events unfold in a series of three phases.

The “applying” phase occurs as the transiting planet approaches the degree of our natal planet. This is the phase of initiation, where the first […]

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By |2006-10-30T11:36:00-04:00October 30th, 2006|Fate|Comments Off on The Moirae: the Triple Nature of Fate and Planetary Cycles

Sunday inspiration

photo by Rainer Holzm courtesy of Corbis

THOU art the sky and thou art the nest as well.
0 thou beautiful, there in the nest it is thy love that encloses the soul with colours and sounds and odours.
There comes the morning with the golden basket in her right hand bearing the wreath of beauty, silently to crown the earth.
And there comes the evening over the lonely meadows deserted by herds, through trackless paths, carrying cool
draughts of peace in her golden pitcher from the western ocean of rest.
But there, where spreads the infinite sky for the soul to take her flight in, reigns the stainless white radiance. There
is no day nor night, nor form nor colour and never, never a word.

From: ‘The Gitanjali’ Rabindranath Tagore

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By |2017-04-02T09:43:17-04:00October 29th, 2006|Uncategorized|Comments Off on Sunday inspiration

Mercury retrograde and other planetary news

Mercury turned retrograde early this morning, turning our attention inward for increased self-awareness. Added to the heavy Scorpio influence, this is a very good time for introspection and writing, for psychotherapy and psychodrama, and for going back and re-doing anything that needs it. Mercury Rx periods have a bad reputation, but that is only because our Western minds place a priority on outward progress and accomplishment.

While it’s true that it can be difficult to complete projects that are begun while Mercury is retrograde, it is the perfect time for going back and REdoing anything that needs to be REvised or REconsidered. “RE-” is the keyword for Mercury retrograde, and often a difficult project or business deal that has been bogged down in delays may suddenly find a REsolution. And those of you with Mercury retrograde in your charts will find that communication is easier than usual because the whole world now operates the way you do normally.

Mercury will conjunct Jupiter on October 30 which provides an expansive opening for our ideas, but may also make us impatient to make our views understood. When Mercury is retrograde it is often more difficult to communicate and this can lead to frustration during the square to Jupiter. Jupiter, being the King of the Gods, has a strong need to be Right and arguments can ensue as a result. This will make for an lively campaign season here in the US!

Daylight Savings Time ends on October 29 as Neptune turns direct. Throughout October Neptune has slowed its motion down to a crawl as it prepares to change direction after having traveled retrograde since May of 2006. Neptune is the planet of […]

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By |2006-10-28T11:01:00-04:00October 28th, 2006|Mercury retrograde|Comments Off on Mercury retrograde and other planetary news

Transit of Mercury November 8

There will be a transit of Mercury across the Sun November 8, just in time for the US elections. This is a different event than a simple conjunction of Mercury and the Sun; it is more like an eclipse where we are actually able to see Mercury silhouetted against the disk of the Sun. See the NASA site for the technical information. There are only thirteen such transits of Mercury in a century so they are a relatively rare event. The last one occurred in 2003, and we won’t see another until 2016.

Transits of Mercury occur at the midpoint of the Mercury retrograde period and because eclipses tend to mark crisis points that instigate change, we may notice a shift in focus at that time. The last Transit of Mercury occurred May 7, 2003 and during the following week there were two suicide bombings in Chechnya, a bombing in Riyadh Saudia Arabia, and a suicide bombing in Casablanca. In addition, the week of May 4 through May 10 marked a period of 393 tornadoes in 13 US states, more than during any period in US history. At the time Mercury was locked in a stressful T-square formation with Mars and Jupiter that no doubt had an influence on the week’s events.

The previous Transit occurred November 15, 1999 (these events always take place in either May or November) and was not associated with any major events such as this. At that time Mercury did not make any stressful aspects. The chart for the upcoming Transit event on November 7 is very complex, and occuring one day after the US election I would expect some sort of major […]

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By |2006-10-27T12:20:00-04:00October 27th, 2006|Uncategorized|Comments Off on Transit of Mercury November 8

A Look Ahead

We’ve had a rough time astrologically over the past year, which may account for the explosion in new astrology blogs. We get a brief respite in 2007 (except for the opposition of Saturn to Neptune), and then the countdown starts to 2012.

Astrologically, the period around 2012 brings a number of major aspects that are big and challenging, but that also have the potential to bring tremendous change and transformation. The square of Uranus to Pluto, heralding a cultural change that will echo the changes of the Uranus Pluto conjunction in the 1960s, begins in 2011. Uranus will be in Aries, the god of war, with Pluto in Capricorn, the sign of structure and society. Here’s what’s coming up before then:

  • Pluto enters Capricorn 2008 where it is likely to begin the breakdown (Pluto) of our social and governmental structures (Capricorn) so that ultimately they can be rebuilt.
  • Saturn will oppose Uranus 2008-2010, bringing about a clash of authority (Saturn) with rebellion and cultural change (Uranus) (beginning right at the US presidential election).
  • Saturn will square Pluto 2009-2010 with the addition of Jupiter and Uranus during a portion of the cycle. When the two dark lords face off it usually isn’t very pretty.

Difficult times bring transformation and that can be a magnificent experience if we are able to keep our perspective on what is occurring on a spiritual level. has some inspiring words to help keep us focused as we approach these times:

By ancient sources we are told humanity is on an arc of return, and past the depths of its ignorance, though there are a few throwbacks still flailing against history. I believe these times are the last effort for […]

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By |2006-10-26T11:21:00-04:00October 26th, 2006|Uncategorized|Comments Off on A Look Ahead
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