Friday, June 3, 2016

Mars shifts gears: Big Red turns direct as a stressful Solar year dawns for Trump

What we see here is a solar return indicating the year ahead will be very significant—and more than a little chaotic and stressful—but is it the picture of a new president?...we're playing in a cosmic house of mirrors this political year, and we can take nothing for granted!

Well, anxiety over the waning Primary season is heightened these days with the Dems, and Candidate Clinton still hasn’t shaken Candidate Sanders out of the race—or the State Department inspector general’s report off our national radar screen. Will the FBI spring out from a dark alley and ambush her, to boot? Speculation abounds, even though Clinton gave the press a powerful anti-Trump foreign policy speech to deflect their attention on Friday. Even so, a victory for Clinton in California next Tuesday is not a given, despite Gov. Jerry Brown’s endorsement—Sanders is campaigning up a storm that threatens to humble her campaign at a key turning point.

In the Republican camp, Candidate Trump thinks he has everything sewn up, but he’s a bit more harried than usual because (as he says), the “dishonest, sleazy” media wants the facts about his contributions to veterans, and a “bad…Mexican…judge” wants the facts about his defunct Trump University. What does he think would happen in presidential press conferences? Besides, Clinton’s foreign policy speech really, really got under his skin.

Not surprisingly, the more defensive Trump becomes with the media, and the more outrageous his insults of everyone becomes, the more cringing his support from corporate convention sponsors has become—insulting journalists is usually done on the wrong side of the slippery political slope. Charged with uniting the Party and likely hoping to staunch the corporate funding drain, House Majority Leader Paul Ryan finally endorsed Trump this week. Meanwhile, rumors are floating ever so carefully of a possible third-party candidate (in addition to Libertarian Gary Johnson, of course). 

And then there’s Mars, concluding its widdershins waltz (retrograde, against the apparent direction of the Sun) by the end of this month (June 29). But I’m getting ahead of the story: first, Trump celebrates his 70th birthday on June 14, which means a new Solar Return year begins in which Mars will still be retrograde. We’ll examine this chart ahead and then consider quickly how Mars’ about face could play out in the Trump campaign. Next post, we’ll examine the other two candidates and their respective dances with Mars.

First, a “like” and a “share”

Before I say word number one about Trump’s Solar Return chart, however, I have to acknowledge Kevin B. Burk’s masterful predictive analysis of Trump’s chances in this race in the June/July issue of The Mountain Astrologer. This article—“Trump TV: the Final Season”—is well worth a careful read. In a nutshell, the predictive techniques employed by Burk demonstrate that Sun-Mars connections in four different charts (two directed ones and the outgoing and incoming solar return charts) and some significant profected details through the summer are not likely to support Trump’s election in the end. Burk does conclude that Trump will likely emerge from the election with more wealth, influence and celebrity, but no Oval Office. The article was written before the legal drama surrounding Trump University surfaced, so it will be interesting to see how the prediction holds out on that point.

Is there more to say? Reality is slippery in this crazy “house of mirrors” cosmic year, so I tend to think we can’t write Trump (who thrives in slippery times) out of the race quite yet. At the very least, Trump’s antics between now and the election will draw out the drama and could influence how the Dems resolve their quandary, so it ain’t over til it’s over!

A 70th to remember
The general tone of Trump’s new solar year looks guardedly positive; there are some powerful dynamics at work, but not quite arranged the way we might expect for a person on the cusp of a whole new way of life, living situation and career. For starters, the majority of his return chart points (see inner wheel, Biwheel 1 below) fall in succedent houses—usually a sign that the year ahead will be spent completing works-in-progress, not beginning something entirely new. There are powerful indicators of change to his career and public image, and that his goals (however those are defined) are within reach, but there will also be obstacles to that quest, including behind the scene machinations. Health concerns are also something for Trump to watch this year. Let’s examine the biwheel in more detail:

Biwheel 1: (inner wheel) Solar Return, Donald Trump, June 13, 2016, 8:45:14 a.m. DST, Washington, D.C.; (outer wheel) Natal, Donald Trump, June 14, 1946, 10:54 a.m. DST, Jamaica, NY.

SR Ascendant (Leo) sextiles SR 11th house Mercury (Gemini). The Sun always rules a solar return chart, so a Leo ASC merely emphasizes this point. Gemini Mercury here disposes Trump’s SR Sun (which in turn disposes the ASC), so opportunities for ego gratification will certainly exist. Mercury’s role here is supportive, but as we’ll see below, there is a bigger picture to consider. 

Interchart Grand-Square #1 (Mutable): SR & Gemini points (SR Sun-Venus, Natal Uranus-Node-Sun) in 11th SR house oppose Natal Moon (Sagittarius) over SR 5th house; all points square 9th house SR Chiron (Pisces). Trump’s natal chart features the Gemini-Sagittarius opposition, which he works to his own benefit very well; here, the disruptive (perhaps duplicitous) tactics he typically employs could lead to legal trouble (9th house Chiron). Power struggles are often seen with the Old Boys’ Network-style dynamics of 5-11 oppositions; this possibility is reinforced by SR Saturn also inhabiting Trump’s SR 5th (see below for more). 

Interchart Water Grand Trine: SR Chiron (Pisces) trines SR Mars (Rx Scorpio) and Natal Saturn-Venus (Cancer); Natal Saturn-Venus squares SR Uranus (Aries); Natal Mars-ASC (Leo) trines SR Uranus. A water-sign grand trine can unleash a volatile flood of emotion and anxiety, especially with Trump’s natal Saturn-Venus conjunction falling over his SR 12th house. That 12th house meeting suggests that behind-the-scenes players will influence Trump to make radical changes to his public image and occupation (square SR 10th house Uranus) this coming year. Trump may, in fact, feel his public persona is under assault (SR Uranus trine N Mars), but since SR Uranus also rules SR 7th and 8th houses, the volatility may also involve “open enemies” and surprising financial issues (about that legendary tax audit, perhaps?).  

Interchart Grand Square #2 (Mutable): 2nd house SR Jupiter conjoins SR 3rd house cusp and SR Node, and opposes SR Neptune (Pisces) in SR 8th; all of this squares 5th house SR Saturn (Rx Sagittarius) and Natal Moon (Sagittarius) opposite Natal/SR Gemini points (Sun-Venus-Node-Uranus). This complex configuration offers a host of possibilities, but in general they point to the intersection of “Old Boys’ Network” business dealings and speculation (5th-11th), with the somewhat opaque world of Wall Street finance. Jupiter and Neptune (SR 2nd-8th) suggest expansive financial dealings, investment, taxation, legacies. SR Saturn Rx (5th house) suggests that financial dealings of a speculative nature will demand attention. Saturn rules (or co-rules) Trump’s 6th, 7th and 8th SR houses, so the affairs of those houses seem tied into the workings of the grand square—responsibilities of some type are likely.

Jupiter’s Virgo placement points to military-related financial issues; if Trump does by some chance become Commander-in-Chief, this configuration suggests he will influence decisions about military action and the enormous funding required. If he remains a private citizen, this configuration will more likely relate to investment choices.

Communications and other 3rd house issues (SR Jupiter conjunct 3rd house cusp) seem extremely important for Trump this coming year, and could involve a book publishing deal, among other possibilities. The 3rd house also speaks to mental health and state of mind, as well. As noted earlier, his overall health could be under stress this year, so the 3rd house issues could figure into that.

Interchart Yod: SR Mars Rx conjoins Natal IC (Scorpio) and inconjoins SR Sun-Venus and SR Uranus (Aries). Burks felt the SR connection between Sun and Mars here was already a significant negative, but when we consider the tight Yod that forms with SR Mars Rx as the focal planet, the bigger picture emerges. It appears Trump could find himself yoked to an incompatible team making incongruous demands on him—perhaps related to that 5th-11th house power struggle mentioned above, or to a conflict of interests between his relatively new political life and his established business life. Here’s where Mars’ retrograde could give Trump’s political life pause, as well, especially conjoined his natal IC—not the position of prominence we would expect his Mars to occupy the first year of a new presidency.  

Interchart Grand-Square #3 (Fixed): Natal MC (Taurus) at SR 11th house cusp conjoins SR Mercury (Gemini) and opposes SR Mars Rx-Natal IC (Scorpio) at SR 5th house cusp; all of this squares Natal ASC-Natal Mars (Leo) in the SR 2nd house opposite Natal DSC (Aquarius) in SR 8th house.  This entrenched, fixed configuration reinforces that an intense power struggle will consume much of Trump’s attention in the coming year. SR Mars will go direct in the course of things, relieving some of the drag, but some perceived “enemy” is likely to get under his skin in a serious way, probably threatening his reputation (Natal MC-IC-DSC) and his finances (SR 2nd-8th ). Since the configuration is stretched across the chart’s naturally fixed houses, as well, Trump could find himself between the proverbial “rock and a hard place.”

Natal Jupiter (Libra) conjoins Chiron in 3rd house, at SR 4th house cusp and squares SR Pluto (Rx Capricorn); Natal Jupiter opposes SR Uranus (Aries); Natal Neptune (Libra) conjoins SR Moon (Libra). Wounds associated with temperamental excesses are a possibility with this placement, and the square to SR Pluto (6th house) reinforces the possibility of stress to Trump’s health. Even though his SR Moon is mostly well-aspected (trine to SR Mercury and SR DSC its only major aspects), the convergence with his natal Neptune will bear watching. Any resulting excess emotion or—as mentioned, 3rd house mental health issues—may add to the other stressors.

Natal Saturn-Venus (conjoined in Cancer) sextile Natal MC-SR Mercury (Taurus-Gemini), square SR Uranus (Aries), trine SR Mars (Rx Scorpio) and SR Chiron (Pisces) and oppose SR Pluto (Rx Capricorn). It’s significant that Trump’s natal Saturn and Venus are so tightly woven into the entire SR chart—all from the SR 12th house. Powerful inhabitants of his natal 11th house, this duo perhaps explains what’s been called Trump’s “thin skin”—a low tolerance for any criticism or perceived threats to his power. Saturn rules his intercepted natal 5th, 6th and 7th (Placidus), so the anxieties he experiences about being validated in those realms could be exacerbated by Saturn-Venus overlaying his SR 12th. “Winning” is a source of security to Trump, and a retrograde Mars could frustrate that need or thwart his efforts. 

The interchart grand trine (Natal Saturn-Venus to SR Mars Rx to SR Chiron) promises to inflate some possibly wounding situation out of proportion. The wide opposition between natal Saturn-Venus to SR Pluto (SR 6th house) is another indication of possible health issues to watch.

SR Jupiter-Node (Virgo) trine SR Pluto (Capricorn). Jupiter and the Node straddle the SR 2nd-3rd house, and could support a shift in Trump’s mental outlook towards Virgo. The trine to SR Pluto in the SR 6th again raises the connection between his mental status and his health. SR Uranus (Aries) squares Natal Saturn, the 6th house ruler, so caution would be advised.

Mars turns direct on June 29 in its Scorpio domain

So Trump’s solar return appears guardedly optimistic about certain areas of his life and offers a cautionary tale in other areas, but overall the chart seems to lack the unbridled energy one would expect of a newly-minted leader of the free world. Besides, navigating three interchart grand squares is simply hard to fathom--his defensiveness is bound to escalate.  Does this mean he will or will not be elected president? As Burk’s analysis reminds us, one chart doesn’t tell the story. Burk does conclude that Trump will begin experiencing difficulties with his campaign in August, when he will finally step over a critical line with his campaign tactics and begin losing ground. Time will tell!

The public and the pundits fully expect the campaign will escalate into uncharted negativity (the process has already begun), but the rhetoric and hate-mongering could escalate with Mars going direct at the end of this month and squaring Trump’s natal Leo ascendant from his IC (see Biwheel 2 below).

Biwheel 2: (inner wheel) Natal, Donald Trump, June 14, 1946, 10:54 a.m. DST, Jamaica, NY.; (outer wheel) Mars Direct, June 29, 2016, 7:38:18 p.m., DST, Washington, D.C.

Only a few key points from this biwheel need additional focus here (since so many of the points are similar to Trump’s SR chart above):

Mars goes direct over Trump’s natal 3rd house, conjunct his natal IC. Added confirmation that mental health issues are possible and may begin to manifest (if they haven’t already).

Mars Direct (MD) Venus (Cancer) falls square his natal 2nd house Chiron-Jupiter (Libra). This could represent waning financial support for his campaign or more pressure on Trump’s own finances.

Newly direct Mars forms basically the same aspects with his natal chart as it did in his SR chart, but the energy will now be unleashed to express those aspects more straightforwardly.

Final thoughts…can there be a happy ending for this story?

Burks cites the fact that Trump’s progressed Sun, which has conjoined his Leo ascendant (a powerful factor for him up to this point) will enter Virgo on August 6, where it will be “peregrine with no essential dignity whatsoever” (p. 67). As we can see in the SR chart above, this 0° Virgo point will closely square his SR Mercury (Gemini), and since Mercury is dispositor of his natal and SR Gemini points and of SR Jupiter (Virgo), this could undermine his campaign, inspiring ever more defensive/aggressive rhetoric. There may be a limit to what his supporters are willing to accept in him, after all—we can only stay tuned.

What we’ve seen here is a solar return indicating the year ahead will be very significant—and more than a little chaotic and stressful—but is it the picture of a new president? I tend to agree with Burks’ analysis, but we’re playing in a cosmic house of mirrors this political year, and we can take nothing for granted!

Raye Robertson is a practicing astrologer, writer and former university English instructor. A graduate of the Faculty of Astrological Studies (U.K.), Raye focuses on mundane, collective-oriented astrology, with a particular interest in current affairs, culture and media, the astrology of generations, and public concerns such as education and health. Several of her articles on these topics have been featured in The Mountain Astrologer and other publications over the years. Raye can be contacted by comment here, or at: 

© Raye Robertson 2016. All rights reserved.