Today we take a walk with Chiron through Taurus…
Astrology is changing, and not just as it always has in terms of systems and approaches, but at a fundamental level that has not occurred in its history until recent times, with the discoveries of new and significant objects in the solar system throwing today’s astrologers into a very deep end, the depths of which they have not yet truly fathomed. Chiron is a primary entity in the emergence of a new sub-class of celestial bodies that are coming to be known as ‘minor planets’ or ‘dwarf planets’ but which are less rudely referred to as ‘planetoids’ or ‘planetesimals’. In my writing for simplicity I use the term ‘planetoid’ to refer as a group to the asteroids, centaurs and mythic (Trans-Neptunian or Kuiper Belt) worlds described in my book. This is not the astronomical definition, but astrologers have never paid much heed to those, long referring to the Sun and Moon as planets.
Identified in 1977 and considered first a moon of Uranus, then a comet and then an asteroid, now Chiron has come to be called a centaur, a planetoid which displays some characteristics of both asteroids and comets. They are relatively small bodies – the largest known, Chariklo, is about 260km in diameter – and they orbit through the far reaches of the solar system extending from Jupiter outward, crossing the orbits of one or more of the gas giants, Jupiter, Saturn, Uranus and Neptune, and often venturing far beyond Pluto. They are numerous – it is estimated that there are over 44,000 centaurs with diameters larger than 1km.
Chiron is in orbit between Saturn and Uranus, forming a conceptual bridge between them. This has led astrologers to more or less conclude – one of the few things on which there seems to be consensus about the new objects – that he is the link which permits us to transition between the rigid rules of Saturn and the liberating freedom of Uranus. We should be paying attention to the evolution of the concepts that we are attaching to Chiron because this will be of interest to later astrologers when they come to ask questions like “How did Chiron become associated with…?”. Careful attention was not really given to the evolution of concepts that we attached to Uranus and Neptune when astrology was busy doing so, leaving us with many gaps in our knowledge of this area of our history even though it happened very recently.
In an article on generational patterns and astrology I wrote concerning Chiron that:
“We can theorise that the macro cycle is connected to the later parts of the mid-life crisis, like Saturn is via its second return, where the earlier parts are connected with Uranus and Neptune. Chiron fits into the mid life crisis zone right at the point at which our awareness encompasses an entire half century. Its a huge psychological transition that forms a bridge to the latter chapters of life. In terms of generational or collective astrology, 50 years divides things into a historical unit that lets us take in both broad and sweeping changes (Uranus) and the Saturnine methods and paths by which this occurred. This is exactly what the individual human awareness encounters when it turns 50.
I propose that the micro cycle is an initiatory one that mimics this effect on a smaller scale. The sign of Chiron would then become a way by which a generation working together can both comprehend and achieve the conditions which will allow it to leave this world healed by the time it reaches its 50s, so that it can rest as a whole being and teach us in its latter years. It would promote a way for that generation to bridge gaps between tradition or custom and innovation or adventure. It would reveal a wound or fracture in the human collective awareness, drawing it to the surface so that we can work on it. And it would ultimately clue those people in to how they can pull off a successful combination of Saturn and Uranus in their individual and collective lives, showing them the quest of how they can achieve the liberation of Uranus through the discipline of Saturn”.
Our current knowledge of Chiron is limited by the amount of time we have known him and his slow orbit of over 50 years. Here and in The 26 Keys I share with you what I have learned from my own personal work with Chiron in the last 15 years along with the small amount he has taught me about his influence in Taurus. I am reluctant to offer this detailed commentary on his influence in Taurus because I have not had a chance yet to explore it fully, so this is a highly experimental and speculative message. However I have had the opportunity to gather experience on Chiron’s nature myself and have learned from him about his influence in each of the 12 signs and temples, the significance of his aspects and the mission he initiates for humanity. I have just not had an opportunity to apply all of this lore in reality and was taught some things in confidence which I am reluctant to share at this time. It is meant to be a collective voyage, after all.
The sign of Chiron shows the Elemental focus of Chiron for an entire generation of people as the average time Chiron spends in a single sign is about 4-5 years, however this average does not apply in practice due to the eccentricity of the orbit of Chiron, which is not circular but highly elliptical, so he spends 7-8 years in Aries and Pisces but only 1-2 years in Virgo and Libra. Taurus is one of the signs he spends larger portions of time in. The pattern of Chiron in Taurus from 1800 and up to 2100 is outlined below, with the current actively living tribe underlined:
Chiron in Taurus (1800 – 2100)
- 8 May 1828 – 21 Apr 1835 (not including 11 Nov 1828 – 5 Mar 1829 or 3 Jul 1834 – 15 Nov 1834)
- 6 Jul 1876 – 31 Mar 1884 (not including 31 Aug 1876 – 21 Apr 1877 or 13 Dec 1877 – 4 Feb 1878 or 14 Jun 1883 – 11 Dec 1883
- 25 May 1926 – 23 Mar 1934 (not including 20 Oct 1926 – 25 Mar 1927 or 7 Jun 1933 – 22 Dec 1933)
- 28 May 1976 – 11 Apr 1984 (not including 14 Oct 1976 – 28 Mar 1977 or 21 Jun 1983 – 29 Nov 1983)
- 19 Jun 2026 – 5 May 2034 (not including 18 Sep 2026 – 14 Apr 2027 or 19 Jul 2033 – 24 Oct 2033)
- 29 Apr 2077 – 28 Feb 2085 (not including 22 Nov 2077 – 24 Feb 2078 or 25 May 2084 – 14 Jan 2085)
Note the regularity here: in our era he revisits the sign approximately once every 50 years in the 20s and 70s of the century, and he enters Taurus around April or May and leaves it about 7-8 years later in the same period of the year. In total he spends about 7 years in the sign each time, taking into account the times when he is not in Taurus because he is moving backwards and forwards between signs as shown above. This behaviour will change only slowly over many centuries so it is worth remembering.
These are all individual tribes of Chiron in Taurus. Living or dead, these tribes will all generally ‘click’ with one another on the matter of what pains them and how they encounter healing for that pain, and the living tribe will share a quest, a task of the nature of Taurus which they must complete before the next time Chiron enters Taurus. This task is both personal and collective, and those aspects are holistically interchangeable. They will also resonate harmoniously (i.e. find ideal quest allies) with all those who have Chiron in Virgo (Sept. 3rd 1993 – Sept. 9th 1995) or Capricorn (Dec. 11th 2001 – Feb 21st 2005 and July 31st – Dec. 5th 2005), and can experience mutual stimulus to the completion of quests by working with Chiron in Cancer (Jun. 21st 1988 – July 21st 1991) or Pisces (Jan. 20th 1961 – Apr. 1st 1968 and Oct. 18th 1968 – Jan. 30th 1969, as well as babies being born today), but find they encounter healing crises quite often with Chiron in Leo (Jul. 21st 1991 – Sept. 3rd 1993) or Aquarius (Feb. 21st 2005 – Jul. 31st 2005 and Dec. 5th 2005 – Apr. 20th 2010 and Jul. 20th 2010 – Feb. 8th 2011) people. Chiron in Scorpio (Dec. 29th 1996 – Apr. 4th 1997 and Sept. 2nd 1997 – Jan. 7th 1999 and Jun. 1st 1999 – Sept. 21st 1999) is another tribe that brings great challenges, mostly in relating to one another without inflicting further pain. An emphasis on any of these signs which does not include Chiron also carries the same resonance, but (unless it includes Uranus, Neptune or Pluto) it is not essential to the issues of collective astrology and represents how more personal and individual astrological factors interact with collective ones, a hugely complex area where as far as I know little to nothing has been said.
Seven years in a single sign is a long time which puts Chiron in Taurus in the same playing field as Uranus as far as generational astrology is concerned. It will cover such a large and varied amount of people in that time that it will become much harder for us to perceive what the pattern of Chiron in Taurus is, and he will usually be in the detail anyway. Additionally, for people who are born at the start of Chiron in Taurus it will encompass everyone they end up going to school with. Conversely, those born at the very end of Chiron in Taurus will find themselves a minority among a tribe of Chiron in Gemini people, while those born around the middle of Chiron in Taurus will find themselves schooling with an older generation of Chiron in Aries people and a younger generation of Chiron in Gemini people. The point being made here is that when you have a slow moving obse born with Chiron in the early part of Taurus have a much clearer and stronger idea of what Chiron in Taurus actually represents for them, because it will not have been complicated by social interaction with Chiron in Aries or Chiron in Gemini.
This is one way in which we can compensate for the noise effect created by a large population of Chiron in Taurus people when trying to identify what Chiron in Taurus represents. By focusing upon those who are born at the beginning of Chiron in Taurus and trying to understand their early experience of it in relation to their social peers, the other kids who share it, the essence may be clarified. Another way for us to do this is to focus our attention on those individuals who have the Sun, Moon or ascendant in conjunction with Chiron in Taurus, as those individuals will express it more clearly and obviously than others do, provided it is not suppressed or overwhelmed by contrary factors. In the list of well-known people supplied at the end of this message, you’ll find some of the names have been highlighted in bold to indicate that this is the case. Two of them will be briefly considered later in this message.
As I have shown in this series of articles, we can also look at the periods of history during which Chiron was in Taurus to ascertain what its qualities are. Below I have compiled a collection of events and happenings which, to my understanding, resonate with these themes. In choosing these events I have (as is my usual way) focused on events which resonate with Taurus as a way to identify the imprint of Chiron, and when there have been other slow-moving planets in Taurus which could have created these Taurus like events, such as Jupiter, I have been more selective and tried to identify whether the event is part of those themes rather than the Chiron in Taurus themes before adding anything to the list. Sometimes, as in the period 1876-1884, I have been ignoring entire periods, resulting in less data.
1828 – 1835 (excluding the dates mentioned above): Swan River colony secures the western ‘third’ of the Australian landmass for the British; Perth founded; Chicago established; various Maori chieftains of Northland region of North Island proclaim their independence; ‘Merthyr Rising’ (rioting for better working conditions in the UK); the Kaspar Hauser mystery; the Belgian Revolution; the Bosnian Uprising; Treaty of London establishes an independent Greece and Athens becomes the capital; ‘The Liberator’, an antislavery newspaper, begins publishing in Boston, Massachusetts; ‘Indian Removal Act’ passed by US Congress; the Black Hawk War; Bad Axe Massacre ends the last major Native American rebellion east of the Mississippi; Fort Cass is established (the military headquarters and site of the largest internment camps during the 1838 ‘Trail of Tears’, to come under Chiron in Gemini); Britain retakes the Falkland Islands (see 1976-1984); the first enzyme, diastase, is discovered by Anselme Payen; Charles Darwin makes his historic voyage aboard HMS Beagle; The Hunchback of Notre Dame is first published by Victor Hugo; the Book of Mormon is first published; Advent Movement in the United States launched; French Foreign Legion is founded; James Clark Ross locates the position of the North Magnetic Pole; volcanic island of Graham Island briefly emerges in the Mediterranean; cholera epidemic in London claims at least 3,000 victims then spreads to France and North America; Reform Act becomes law in the United Kingdom; the first assassination attempt against a President of the United States (Andrew Jackson); economic prosperity in Europe and North America as a result of connective infrastructures like railways.
NOTE: This is a good period to study Chiron in Taurus, as the only other slow moving planet in Taurus during this period is Jupiter (24th June – 28th Oct 1833 and 11th Feb – 28th June 1834).
1876 – 1884 (excluding the dates mentioned above): Atlas bear of Europe and Cape lion of Africa driven to extinction by humans; long-awaited First Symphony of Johannes Brahms is premiered; “Dull Knife Fight” (in retaliation for the dramatic American defeat at the Battle of the Little Bighorn, troops under General Ranald S. Mackenzie sack Chief Dull Knife’s sleeping Cheyenne village at the headwaters of the Powder River, destroying all of the villagers’ winter food and clothing, and then slashing their ponies’ throats); Alexander Graham Bell installs the world’s first commercial telephone service; discoveries of Deimos and Phobos (moons of Mars); Thomas Edison announces his invention of the phonograph, a machine that can record sound; Thomas Edison patents the incandescent light bulb; the journal ‘Science’ is first published; Tokyo Stock Exchange is established; Cleopatra’s Needle is erected in London; world’s first recorded floodlit football fixture is played; Yellow Fever in the Mississippi Valley kills over 13,000; Anglo-Zulu War; first successful shipment of frozen mutton from Australia; The Snow Winter or Great Blizzard of 1880; first cash register is patented.
NOTE: There were many planets passing through Taurus in this period – Jupiter, Saturn, Neptune and Pluto – bringing greater obscurity to the impact of Chiron in Taurus. It is not a good area for study of this pattern as all of the above can also be attributed to a major planet in Taurus. However, Chiron is in there somewhere!
1926 – 1934 (excluding the dates mentioned above): Chinese Civil War begins; “Black Tuesday” (the stock market crashes, leading to the Great Depression); The Jazz Singer (and the first full talking pictures); Jukeboxes being introduced; “All Quiet on the Western Front”; Mammoth Cave National Park is authorised by the United States Congress; strong hurricane devastates Miami, leaving over 100 dead and causing several hundred million dollars in damage (equal to nearly $100 billion today); weather map televised for first time; League of Nations Slavery Convention ‘abolishes’ all types of slavery; U.S. Bureau of Prohibition is founded; banking crisis in Japan; Great Mississippi Flood (the most destructive river flood in the history of the United States); actual carving begins at Mount Rushmore; Joseph Stalin gains undisputed control of the Soviet Union; Griffith’s experiment indirectly proves the existence of DNA; volcanic island (Anak Krakatau) appears; St. Francis Dam north of Los Angeles fails, killing 600; Chinese warlord Shi Yousan sets fire to the Shaolin Monastery in Henan, destroying some of its ancient structures and artifacts; first public demonstration of colour TV is held (first images are a bouquet of roses and an American flag); the birth of radio astronomy; “Winnie the Pooh” published; Mickey and Minnie Mouse appear; “Betty Boop” premieres; “Looney Tunes” cartoon begins; “Lone Ranger” begins; “Dick Tracy” appears; Clyde Tombaugh confirms the existence of Pluto; “Birdseye” frozen foods go on sale, founding the modern frozen food industry; Hostess Twinkies are invented; chocolate chip cookie is invented; first FIFA World Cup starts; California gets the go-ahead by the United States Congress to build the San Francisco–Oakland Bay Bridge; construction of the Golden Gate Bridge begins in San Francisco Bay; Sydney Harbour Bridge opens; construction of the Empire State Building is completed; Salvador Dalí’s “The Persistence of Memory” is put on display for the first time; Bible Student movement adopts the name “Jehovah’s Witnesses”; floods in China reach their peak in possibly the deadliest natural disaster yet recorded; Al Capone is sentenced to 11 years in prison for tax evasion in Chicago; “Brave New World” by Aldous Huxley is first published; “Tarzan the Ape Man” opens; “King Kong” premieres; first Purple Heart is awarded; 15,000 World War I veterans arrive in Washington, D.C. demanding the immediate payment of their military bonus; Ghandi repeatedly imprisoned and on hunger strike; Soviet famine (millions starve to death as part of the government’s effort to break rural resistance to its policies. The Soviet regime denies the famine and allows millions to die); FBI Crime Lab officially opens; the start of the Dust Bowl in the United States; political rise of Hitler and the Reichstag fire; Dachau, the first Nazi concentration camp, is completed and opens.
NOTE: This is an excellent period to study Chiron in Taurus, as the only other slow moving planet in Taurus during this period is Jupiter (3rd June 1928- 3rd June 1929).
1976 – 1984 (excluding the dates mentioned above): 1979 energy/oil crisis; the worst economic performance of most industrialised countries’ since the Great Depression; first complete DNA genome to be sequenced; the first child to be born via in vitro fertilisation; the world’s first test tube baby is born; eradication of the smallpox virus is certified, making smallpox the first of only two human diseases that have been driven to extinction; first known outbreak of Ebola virus; artificial insulin is invented; “The Muppet Show” is broadcast for the first time; “Garfield”, which eventually becomes the world’s most widely syndicated comic strip, makes its debut; “Dallas” premieres; “Saturday Night Fever” is released in theatres and becomes the biggest dancing movie of all time; “Grease” releases; Michael Jackson releases “Thriller”, the biggest selling album of all time; “Indiana Jones and the Raiders of the Lost Ark” releases; the Chimpanzee is placed on the list of endangered species; death of Bob Marley; Elvis Presley dies; John Lennon is murdered; Groucho Marx dies; Sid Vicious dies; a new volcano, Murara, erupts in eastern Zaire; eruption of Mount St. Helens kills 57 and causes US$3 billion in damage; Kīlauea begins slowly erupting on the Big Island of Hawaii (and is still erupting today in 2016); meteorological El Niño phenomenon brings severe weather worldwide; Sahara Desert experiences snow for 30 minutes; Great Blizzard of 1978; subterranean Sarawak Chamber is discovered in Borneo (the largest known cave chamber in the world by area and the second largest by volume ); 3.5 week sit-in of the San Francisco Federal Building to persuade implementing the first Federal civil rights law for people with disabilities; “Star Wars” (entire original trilogy) arrives and brings with it the modern era of movie merchandising; the era of arcade video games arrives; “Superman” premieres; CDs and Walkmans appear; colour TV replaces black and white globally; first oil through the Trans-Alaska Pipeline System reaches Valdez, Alaska; blowout at the Ixtoc I oil well in the southern Gulf of Mexico (causes at least 600,000 tons of oil to spill into the waters, the worst oil spill in history except for the Deepwater Horizon oil spill); Falklands War (see 1828 – 1835); United States Senate hearings on Project MKUltra are held; The Big Ear, a radio telescope operated by Ohio State University as part of the SETI project, receives a radio signal from deep space (the event is named the Wow! signal for a notation made by a volunteer on the project); Soviet icebreaker “Arktika” becomes the first surface ship to reach the North Pole; modern Food Stamp Program begins; UK mining disputes; “Never Mind the Bollocks, Here’s the Sex Pistols” reaches no.1 a week after release despite being withheld from sale by many retailers; Chiron, first of the Centaurs, is discovered; Voyager 1 probe confirms the existence of Janus, a moon of Saturn; Charon, a moon of Pluto, is discovered; U.S. Voyager 1 spaceprobe photos reveal Jupiter’s rings; Pioneer 11 becomes the first spacecraft to visit Saturn; Space Shuttle Columbia launches and returns to Earth (the first time a manned reusable spacecraft has returned from orbit); poison-filled pellet, supposedly injected using an umbrella, poisons Bulgarian defector Georgi Markov in London; home-brewing of beer in the United States signed into law; McDonald’s introduces the Happy Meal and McNugget; the first international election in history (elections to the European Parliament); NASA’s first orbiting space station Skylab begins its return to Earth, after being in orbit for 6 years and 2 months; “Pennsylvania Lottery scandal” (fixed lottery draw by a TV presenter); the first computer virus (the Elk Cloner, written by a 15-year old); the Thames Barrier.
NOTE: This is another excellent period to study Chiron in Taurus, as the only other slow moving planet in Taurus during this period is Jupiter (28th May – 23rd August 1976 and 16th Oct. 1976 – April 3rd 1977). Additionally, Chiron was discovered in this period.
I prepare these lists not as a definitive exercise, but more as a starting point for the research into Chiron that some of my readers might wish to do. My aim is primarily to provide enough material for someone to do that, and secondarily I hope to identify some of the major themes that they may seek to begin investigating. They are also a good way to illustrate some of my thinking about Chiron and a particular sign, thinking that I usually only have a chance to communicate when writing to someone on a personal level.
So my investigations are speculative and meant to provide you with pieces to start thinking about putting together for yourselves, it is important to emphasise that we have no consensus yet on the true nature of Chiron, that astrology is still discovering what this little object means. We should be keeping an open mind as well as seeking to define it. That said, I think we clearly see that Chiron is connected with economic and financial events when placed in Taurus – we get the cash register, the 1920s financial crash and the Great Depression, the Tokyo Stock Exchange, banking collapses in Germany and Japan, Al Capone going to jail for tax evasion, disputes over pay and working conditions and some of the biggest selling movies and records of all time, including the totally maverick success of The Sex Pistols, followed by the death of their figurehead. In fact I think the theme at hand here is more clearly expressed as a portrayal of the stark division between those who have virtually everything and those who have virtually nothing. It seems fair to say that Chiron in Taurus squeezes more of the middle classes into the poverty zone, leading to a bigger gap between social classes. Necessities grow perceptibly more scarce, and tension and a need for healing then arises out of this gulf and the uneven distribution of resources. It seems also pertinent to note here that in many cases there is a connection between the poverty and environmental situations (long blizzards and severe floods seem popular, but consider the shady financial history of Chicago) which act as causes of famine, poverty, contamination or failure of crops. Conditions are sometimes measurably harder for the working classes in these periods, and the rich feel the lash of resentment more. The exception seems to be the 1830s, but only if we measure wealth and economic prosperity in the western world. The original Americans were being butchered in this period, and losing all of their anciently tended land.
I think the main point here is that Chiron in Taurus does not necessarily bring poverty, since there are plenty of individuals with Chiron in Taurus who enjoy massive wealth. However, those who do so find that it troubles them on some level, because there is an awareness that their gain is at the expense of a poorer person’s loss, or because they acquired their wealth through circumstances which were less than honest. Other people, however, experience the other end of the spectrum, and struggle with conditions and pay, a path which becomes a healing path for them. Unlike Saturn in Taurus, which can really put on the squeeze in denying needed things just to make us resourceful, Chiron in Taurus illuminates the relativity of wealth and poverty. Audrey Hepburn was born into privilege and wealth in Belgium in 1929. When she was five or six years old her parents separated and later divorced and she described this as “the most traumatic event of my life”. Shortly after this, she and her mother were on vacation in the Netherlands when Hitler’s Nazi army occupied and took over the town, and she said she suffered from malnutrition and depression during the long period in which she was trapped there. After the liberation, she became a ballet dancer and a model which later led to her movie career and her famed role as Holly Golightly in “Breakfast At Tiffany’s”. She has been described as “the most beautiful woman of all time”, and her beauty was a simple, elegant, fresh, natural one. At the end of her life she devoted a lot of her time and resources to the welfare of poor children through the charity UNICEF. Audrey was born with Chiron in Taurus in the (Placidus) 2nd temple, in conjunction with the Sun and near to Jupiter in Taurus, and with both Sun and Chiron in sextile with the Moon in Pisces in the 1st and Pluto in Cancer in the 5th. Her chart puts paid to the myth that Chiron in Taurus makes you poor. It just makes you extremely sensitive to the pain of poverty.
Geological and meteorological events also show their fingerprints – volcanic eruptions give birth to new islands or proceed with a slow burn, giant caves are discovered, El Niño wreaks havoc and man-made disasters occur involving oil. The television weather report is born, the position of the Magnetic North Pole is identified and in space, small but fascinating things are discovered – moons and rings, Pluto and Chiron itself – which add important but small physical details to our knowledge of the solar system. Here we are seeing a direct connection with the physical universe which involves not only learning about important but small details, but also with the Earth itself and the ecosystem struggling to maintain an equilibrium or simply to exist. Volcanic eruptions are Taurean because they allow for a lush and verdant landscape to appear. Chiron in Taurus seems to play a role in instructing us about physical nature, the consequences of our actions upon it and our choices in living from it.
One fascinating detail we see is that Chiron in Taurus tends to bring us small, sweet treats, what is commonly referred to as “junk food” – the chocolate chip cookie, the Twinkie, the chicken nugget. They tend to be things that large numbers of people enjoy, but which are not actually all that good for them in terms of nutritious value or in terms of the production methods used to create them. These foods often become a pacifying factor when there is increased class division due to the uneven distribution of wealth – they are ‘opiates of the masses’. They are foods for the poor, or the depressed, or the pressed for time. We also see the production and commercial transportation of frozen foods, highlighting the ability of Taurus to keep things fresh and long-lasting, while also increasing the potential for global economic gain. We can also add in here the phenomenal success of video arcade games (the most successful of all time being “Pac Man” which debuted in this period), the arrival of the Walkman and the CD, and the initially mysterious appearance in the list of colour TV and cartoon figures and icons like Mickey Mouse, Betty Boop, The Muppet Show, Loony Tunes and the quintessentially Taurean Winnie the Pooh. When you remember that Taurus is ruled by Venus, and has dominion over the taste buds, throat and the voice, the fact that Chiron in Taurus connects with laughter, cartoons, marathon binge watching and cookies should come as no surprise. Laughter is an incredibly healing thing. So is comfort eating.
Since Taurus is a sensual sign connected with singing and the voice as well as the body and dancing, we see massive success for those things in the media in the modern era under this period. Chiron in Taurus introduces the jukebox, the Walkman and the CD. The public responds to the potential healing these things offer them during these times. Also popular are stories and entertainments which focus upon wealth or poverty and transitioning between them. “Dallas” seems to take all the themes of Chiron in Taurus except the quest to heal through singing and dancing (mercifully) and roll them all up into one big bundle. “Saturday Night Fever” and “Grease” were both phenomenal at the time they released, sweeping everyone up in a wave of feel-good dancing and singing along. This theme intersects with events connected with hearing and the transmission of sound, bringing about the telephone, radio transmissions and other communications through space such as the ‘Wow!’ signal.
More tragically, we see the extinction or the approach of the extinction of powerful, iconic beasts (one of the greatest movies of all time, the original King Kong, debuted under Chiron in Taurus and beautifully epitomises this theme). These atrocities occur not just through the erosion of an environment but through an intentional hunting by human beings, okay let’s be honest – almost entirely by white men and poachers who work for white men. Taurus is a bestial sign, meaning that it is connected to instinctive awareness, to the animal world, but it is also a docile sign, on the whole. These more predatory expressions of Chiron in Taurus are consequences of our misalignment with nature, and the clue we are given is that Chiron in Taurus affects land dwellers with physical strength. They become threatened by the insensible keeper of the physical garden. These periods offer us a potential for course correction with respect to our relationship with the entire natural world, especially plants and animals, but also rocks. I believe this to be a critical theme to the current tribes well-being and a part of its modern sacred quest. The verdant path is in reinvigorating the natural world and establishing common sense principles in how we handle its resources. It is part of the rising interest in subsistence and local farming, and the interest in long relied upon, traditional methods of growing and feeding things (now existing on the fringe and cunningly disconnected from those roots by being called ‘organic’). Many people want a new life ‘outside of the system’ and want to own land in order to grow their own food. They perceive the economic system to be on the verge of collapse, and so some also build survival bunkers crammed with stuff. All of this, instructs Chiron in Taurus, is part of a package. We instinctively sense that our own survival as a species is fundamentally physically connected to the survival of all physical life in general.
One major theme that needs a lot more research is the connection Chiron in Taurus has to physical impairments and physical disabilities. It is one of the themes that are often focused upon (in a negative way) when astrologers talk about Chiron in Taurus – its potential to disfigure or distort the physical form is often given an emphasis in interpretations. This used to be perceived as a malefic role of Saturn in Taurus until we decided that was too harsh to make a central tenet of. We do see, in the list above, an indication that Chiron in Taurus is connected to the social disenfranchisement and the economic handicaps that are always associated with physical disability (the three main examples being injured World War I veterans seeking their financial settlements in Washington, the 3.5 week sit-in of the San Francisco Federal Building to persuade implementing the first Federal civil rights law for people with disabilities, and the story of the Hunchback of Notre Dame, perhaps also the mysterious tragedy of Kaspar Hauser).
We do not, however, see instances of physical disfigurement and disability rising (although that is hard to track). In many of the figures that are associated with Chiron in Taurus in the list below, especially those who have Chiron in connection with one of the Lights or the ascendant, or in some kind of difficult arrangement of planets, we do see physical diminishing or deformity, or protracted struggles with physical illness. However, my sense of it is that Chiron in Taurus relates to the efforts and struggles of these people to be more accepted and equally treated in our society, and as such it represents a concern of the tribe more than it represents an affliction to the tribe. Additionally, the history of physical disability being what it is, there have not been many efforts to tell history from the point of view of physical disability – a point of view that may have a lot of correlation to Chiron in Taurus.
Alexander Pope was an 18th-century satirist poet also known for translating ancient words written by Homer. He was born the son of a linen merchant in 1668 in London. Because at the time Catholics were not particularly popular around London (they were forbidden from teaching, voting, holding public office or attending university, upon pain of perpetual imprisonment), he was taught to read by his aunt and moved out to the countryside when he was 12 years old. Later in his life, he would draw a great deal of inspiration from his long walks in the forests and woods. However, also from this age, he suffered from many physical problems including Potts disease (a form of tuberculosis) which stunted his growth at 1.37 m (4 ft 6 in), deformed his body, severely hunched his back and generally made his life a misery with fever, swollen eyes and a lack of energy. These two factors, the attitudes to Catholicism and his physical challenges, arguably led to him being more reclusive and finding more solace in things like poetry. Although he began his life in hardship, he ended up with vast sums of money, which he was philanthropic with. He never married, but allegedly had a lifelong lover in the form of a friend named Martha Blount. Pope was born with Chiron in Taurus conjunct Uranus in opposition with the ascendant and in a square with Moon in Aquarius in the 3rd.
Taking Pope as an example, if we widen the scope of this theme a little to include events involving disease, we end up catching more in the net. We still know relatively little about Ebola, such as its natural host or how it survives in the wild, but most people by now have heard of this terrible disease. It spreads through the natural secretions of a human host, such as blood or sweat, and attacks every organ of the body except the bones and skeletal muscles. It literally digests the collagen in the body, the tissue that keeps the organs in place, leading to massive hemorrhaging and blood clotting. As the blood slows down it leads to systemic blockages and the appearance of steadily growing red spots upon the skin. Cholera mostly affects children and is spread largely through water and food that has been contaminated by human feces, and so it thrives in areas of poverty or during times of extreme economic and social degeneration. The skin turns bluish. Yellow Fever is spread by mosquitoes and so thrives in wilderness areas – 90% of Yellow Fever today is in Africa, where it originated. Its name comes from the strong cold fever and damage to the liver which causes yellowing of the skin. Smallpox, one of only two infectious diseases to have been supposedly eradicated in human history, is a truly ancient disease with a history stretching back at least 10,000 years. It is inhaled and was the scourge of the 18th-century, bringing about a third of all blindness. It quickly attacks the skin which it leaves in a terrible condition. So we begin to see a pattern involving Chiron in Taurus which focuses upon diseases which show symptoms upon the skin, a Taurus area, and which damage physical senses or thrive in impoverished places.
Widening the scope of this theme of things that affect the physical form a little more we can start to draw connections to IVF treatment and test-tube babies, the unlocking of DNA sequences and the creation of an FBI crime lab. The focus of Chiron in Taurus with respect to this theme therefore might generally be defined as “the quest to master the world of physical forms”. Here, Chiron may be setting us up for a moral dilemma in the future – one which brings us full circle back to where we began this discussion about people with physical disabilities – since there may come a time when we will be able to screen out the very building blocks of these conditions. What does it say about the value we place on people with physical disabilities if our science is working to eradicate them? This goes right to the very heart of the question “what does it mean to master the world of physical forms?”
We see an interesting theme in terms of location with Chiron in Taurus on the one hand bringing us horrors like concentration camps – places where physical conditions lead to ill health and death – and on the other, quirkily, to iconic and financially significant bridges – The Golden Gate, the Oakland Bay Bridge and the Sydney Harbour Bridge, even the Thames Barrier can be placed in this category. Other iconic financial and political structures, such as the Empire State building and Mount Rushmore, also have stories expressing the themes of Chiron in Taurus, particularly during the construction. The arduous and costly transportation of Cleopatra’s Needle to London and the ceremonial ritual wherein Freemasons buried objects beneath where it was erected, as well as the burning of the Shaolin Monastery with the loss of many long treasured cultural artifacts, also fit into this theme. Aside from iconic landmarks, we also see events connected with territory, with Maori chieftains and Indian war chiefs fighting for their land, the British retaking and retaking the tiny but strategically important Falkland Islands, western parts of Australia coming under the sway of the British Empire and Stalin gaining complete control of the Soviet Union. Not to mention Hitler and the Reichstag fire. Fascism of one kind or another seems to crop up in connection with economic stresses as part of this pattern.
These and other clues emerge from the historical evidence. Further clues can be gathered from what we already know about astrology, even when we know nothing about Chiron. Taurus, the Fixed/Stable Earth sign and the Magnetic expression of the planet Venus, is a steady, cautious, externally and practically focused sign whose strategy (in contrast to the transformative complexity of Scorpio) is to simplify things and maintain the integrity and vitality of their form. When Taurus is a block it resists even positive change and clings to things like mud, so it is often accused of being slow, stubborn, possessive, unadventurous, materialistic, ‘base’ and envious of the valuables that others have sticking to them. It is often depicted in art as being connected to all the green things, especially to fields and meadows, and to all solidly built, robust and physically powerful animals who live upon the ground or within it, but Chiron implies a warping or distortion (now go look at Dalis “The Persistence of Memory” and see the Chironic effect on concrete things, the surreal and relativistic warping of time and space, and the often overlooked detail of the tiny but potent ants). In my book “The 26 Keys” I describe Taurus as a “binding sign” because it is the cohesive power of the Earth Element, the Magnetic power which keeps things in form. A rock is a rock is a rock, says Taurus, and no matter how much philosophy we throw at it, it will always be a rock. Taurus is a sign where the spirits toil and labour, where nature is put to work by the beings of the plough and the soil, the animating power of the Sun and the richness and fecundity of the ground. Its focus is on getting things done, ignoring complicated distractions in favour of continued labour towards the goal. It does not concern itself with the occult, but only with the tangible. Chiron in Taurus causes these attitudes to melt like Camembert left in the Sun, as Dali himself put it.
The placement of Chiron in this sign, therefore, essentially points towards a search for sacred material values of some kind, for something tangible that can contain and express a spiritual essence in its form. There is additionally a desire to preserve those material values which have demonstrated their usefulness and resourcefulness in the past, and so this tribe is not as inventive as other Chiron tribes, it is less interested in innovation and newness and more interested in preserving things that already exist. It’s magic is in gaining such a mastery of physical form and an understanding of material rules by doing things its own way and not aligning with any factions. As an instructor, Chiron in Taurus seeks to preserve the old ways which continue to work, but it has to do so in a way that belongs to it and it alone, a way that is distinctly tailored to suit the circumstances. The tribe has a task to identify those things which need to be preserved and continued, and it must labour to ensure that those things occur.
The sign of Chiron shows the Elemental focus of Chiron, in this case Earth, and it is Stable. The essence of Earth is focus on the material and physical zone of life, on sustaining, forming and shaping things. The essence of Stable is that of concentrated fixity and solidity, of continuity. It is the antithesis of change and the quintessence of strength. These are the reliable clues as to how Chiron operates in Taurus – he is about sustaining something with substance in a continuous effort. He looks upon the labour and the unpleasantness involved in navigating through the material world with a spirit of readiness, calling for enduring determination and resolve to make peace with its unyielding nature, to work hard at making something through persistent effort. Yet there is a warning about stagnation through a lack of fluidity and openness to change, a potential to become stuck in the swamp and mud, stubbornly refusing to budge from painful places. Chiron in Taurus can become possessive of its own pain. It is a Chiron who distrusts change because it is inherently unstable and is therefore prone to distrust anything new, which is precisely the medicine being called for since the pattern of adherence to proved methods leads to orthodoxy and the status quo. The balance is delicate and requires persistent hard work.
With Chiron in Taurus people will experience a crisis of material and physical values – the ethics of what is right and wrong, the question of whether something will last, the permanence of things and their true worth. This may show itself in a number of ways. Individuals may experience a lack of self-worth and over-compensate by accruing money and possessions, or valued possessions may break more easily and more often than they expect. They may also have a deep distrust of the body, or feel that their body is not beautiful, is broken, unfit, unattractive or slow. Poverty may be a major theme in the life, the kind that leads to the loss of basic necessities like food, shelter and self worth, but this need not be a permanent situation and wealth can also be a burden. Some people may have plenty of money but find it cannot afford any of the things they truly need, or they may have sensory impairments such as a lack of the ability to see or hear things. The neck and the sex organs are particularly sensitive to blockages or wounding with Chiron in Taurus.
The tribe heals through enjoying the richness of physically being alive – good food, healthy green environments, fine wine, beautiful rocks, touching and feeling. Awareness of all these things are ways in which the tribe preserve ways to care for the physical body and physical things in a manner that is healing for all of the being, not just our flesh. The point of Chiron in Taurus is to initiate us into certain Earth mysteries – resourcefulness, patience, an enjoyment of the simple things in life like clean air and water, fresh rain on meadows and the grounding that comes from contact with the soil and the dirt, the quiet pleasure of a good task well done and a place to rest in comfort afterwards. Chiron in Taurus reminds us in many ways of the preferred lifestyles of J.R. Tolkien’s creations, the hobbits. Or, is there any honey left in this pot? Oh, dear…:(
Considering three apparent primary roles of Chiron – maverick, healer and initiator – what can be said of the influence of Chiron in Taurus? Taurus is perhaps as far from being a maverick as you can get, being given to just quietly pulling the plough until the job is done. Yet the sign can still be expressed in a maverick fashion, it is simply a question of not being swayed or overly persuaded by the material world and its concrete, unyielding laws. To put it simply, the conventional Taurean attitude is both down to Earth and materialistic, but the maverick Taurean attitude is not persuaded that this is all there is or all that is really important. It tries to utilise money not for its own enjoyment but to bring people together and make problems and pain go away. It sees its body not as a thing it possesses or its senses as the only thing to trust, as is typical with Taurus, but instead as the relative means to an end, a way to make the physical world better. It pulls the plough in a straight and untiring line across the muddy field of life but it does so not because it is in its nature or in its interests, but because it is stupid and painful not to. Here again, we see a connection with the circumstances of the working classes. Cheekily, but with his usual wisdom, Chiron in Taurus suggests that the people who work in the sewage system should be paid millions. That’s the maverick side of his mood in Taurus.
If individuals in this tribe walk the path of a healer they will learn to rely on their own body’s wholeness, its integration with healing dimensions of awareness, and Chiron will help to develop the ability to create self sustaining and continuing physical healing magic. They may be able to help people with throat and vocal issues, muscular tensions, sensual disabilities (deafness and blindness especially), mental and emotional health issues connected with poverty and need or lack, negative self worth, problems which stem from the Earth Element and our collective dissociation from nature. Some who reach deep into the territory of Chiron in Taurus as healers will find themselves able to work much more directly with the physical realm than they thought possible, discovering the secrets of how to affect the physical plane of substance directly without mediating essential meaning through the mental and astral planes. His natural lore here can lead us to not only preserve the ecosystem but to strengthen it. The healing path of Chiron in Taurus very often requires repeated and consistent actual walks in nature (VR be damned) because the beings of nature invisibly help them to integrate their experiences, especially the emotional experiences they are resisting or blocking. The path of the healer for Chiron in Taurus is however about acquiring the knowledge and lore required to heal through encountering some physical misalignment within yourself and questing to restore the integrity of your being. This is a very Gaian path, filled with rainforest magic.
The initiatory path of Chiron is always a journey from the separated and fractured awareness of ‘unique individual left to fend for itself alone in a stormy sea of people all in the same boat’ to ‘unique individual who is an equal, vital and integral part of the functioning whole’. When Chiron is in Taurus, this journey leads you through an exploratory quest in search of the attitudes you have about physical life and the values you see in it. Chiron instructs you in your own inherent and integral self worth, showing you that the way you look at the world stems outward from this trunk like the branches from a tree, and ultimately that these branches have roots and that the entire thing – trunk, branches, roots, glimmering leaves – is all connected to everything else in the forest. However, an initial vital level of instruction has to be grasped and that is that change must be introduced to the physical value system in greater quantities than it is allowed to by the nature. These souls must not only give up possession of pain but also overcome the apprehension that change brings pain, that disrupting the way things are is in itself a suffering.
In their search for values on the material plane – the answer to what things are worth and what they are used for – this tribe make use of things that already exist and preserve the value of things they believe to work. This may leave them feeling that they create nothing new, that they add nothing fresh, but they cope well when they have few physical resources because they have the gift of producing things from the works of others, like farmers benefiting from centuries of planting. Typically they will have a very principled moral code which they value very highly, but it will be rigid and outmoded because it refuses to adapt itself, and they can then become stuck in it. What needs to be recognised and understood here is that this tribe is motivated by the preservation of standards and principles and they need not feel inadequate because they do not create new structures for the healing of the collective. Their way, their quest as a member of the collective, is to preserve and nurture something more sacred – its value system. It is their task to assess the true value of the physical, astral and mental resources of our collective humanity and ensure their continuation. If the world is to avoid the total catastrophe it is currently heading towards we will need these people to save species, preserve ecosystems, resist material corruption and teach us how to truly honour that which binds us all together – the sacred Mother Earth.
This verdant path is a slow, dense path of initiation that may require continued physical effort and persistence with a tradition of some kind to traverse, but will become an instinctive thing after enough practice, at which point traditions need to be parted from. Large parts of it may initially at least be connected with getting in touch with your own body or immersing it in the sensual world, with feeling comfortable within a physical form. The verdant path leads directly and deeply into the physical world of substance and form, teaching us about the vast resources available to physical beings. It calls the tribe to preserve the world around them for future generations by calling upon common sense and our ancient connections to the land. It highlights divisions and fractures which arise through economic inequalities and the uneven spread of physical resources, factors which compel this tribe to seek solutions and healing. Within both the sprawling concrete jungles of our cities and suburban landscapes and in the depths of the Amazon rainforest and Africa, the verdant path weaves its way towards an emerald encrusted destination.
Chiron was in Taurus in the astrology for Edward Higgins White (first person to perform a spacewalk), Roy Chapman Andrews (an Indiana Jones type figure famous for exploring China and Mongolia, discoverer of the first fossilised dinosaur eggs and director of the American Museum of Natural History), Neil Armstrong, Edouard Manet, Pablo Picasso, Andy Warhol, Rupert Murdoch, Ross Perot, Mata Hari, Jim Jones, Anne Frank, Maya Angelou, Lewis Carroll, Shirley Conran, Helmut Kohl, Emily Dickinson, Allen Ginsberg, Gene Hackman, James Joyce, Philip K. Dick, Alexander Pope, Fidel Castro, Chuck Berry, Igor Stravinsky, John Coltrane, Patsy Cline, Miles Davis, Nina Simone, Joanne Woodward, Buzz Aldrin, Robert Wagner, Stephen Sondheim, Johannes Brahms, Joseph Haydn, Rolf Harris, Marshall Applewhite, Boxcar Willie, James Brown, Martin Luther King, Franklin D. Roosevelt, Harvey Milk, Pope Benedict XVI, Emperor Akihito, Grace Kelly, Albert Einstein, Alexander Fleming, Liv Tyler, Joan Collins, Ian Holm, Shirley Temple Black, Larry Hagman, Elizabeth Taylor, James Dean, Clint Eastwood, Sean Connery, Roger Moore, Audrey Hepburn, Michael Caine, Jayne Mansfield, Dan Rather, James Earl Jones, Aaliyah, Barry Humphries, Jensen Ackles, Chris Pratt, Orlando Bloom, Sam Cooke, Marilyn Monroe and Fay Weldon.