Greetings and welcome back to Journeys! This solstice I am sharing some thoughts about the conjunctions of the Sun.
Every year the Sun will make an exact conjunction with every object in the solar system. The only exceptions to this rule are the Moon which will make a conjunction with the Sun every month instead, and Mercury and Venus which because they lie closer in orbit to the Sun than we are can and do make multiple conjunctions with it each year. Conjunctions of the Sun are therefore relatively common astrologically regardless of which planet or other object the Sun is in a conjunction with. The rarity of the conjunction arises from the sign which very slow moving planets are in, for example there is nobody alive with Pluto conjunct Sun in Aquarius right now, because Pluto was last in Aquarius over two centuries ago (just wait a couple more years though and they will start being born in their millions whenever the Sun enters Aquarius, and this will go on for more than a decade). However, conjunctions with the Sun are actually a very special and unique case and can be examined from two perspectives, phase and proximity, in slightly more detail than other conjunctions are. This is necessary in order to discern the meaning of the specific type of conjunction being expressed, as without these perspectives an analysis of the solar conjunction is more generic and less informative.
The first perspective, phase, is simply the relationship the planet has with the Sun in terms of where it lies in its orbit, its cycle. This will factor into the behaviour of the conjunction. Every planet has a distinct and unique cycle around the Sun which determines its phases and therefore every aspect with the Sun can be considered from this perspective. This is part of the essential nature of the Sun itself which serves to express the infinite facets of our inner beauty. Thus every planet in orbit around the Sun tells us something about our Sun from the perspective and condition of its phase. The core of the phase relationship is the cycle of aspects that the planet makes with the Sun, from conjunction to sextile to square, trine and then opposition, then back again via a trine, square, sextile and new conjunction. This means that a conjunction with the Sun can take place before the end of a cycle or at the very beginning of one. This is the phase relationship it has. If the exact conjunction between the Sun and the object takes place in the future then it means that a cycle is closing, while if the exact conjunction took place in the past then the cycle has just begun. A conjunction that takes place at the very beginning of a cycle has an initiating energy that helps get things started while a conjunction that takes place at the end of a cycle has an energy that brings closure and helps towards the end of things. Closing cycle conjunctions also help us to integrate the conjunction internally whilst opening cycle conjunctions help us to manifest it and to radiate it externally. The sign will always of cause shape this expression. For example, imagine two examples of Sun conjunct Mercury in Taurus, one in which the conjunction was exact in the past (opening cycle) and one in which the conjunction will be exact in the future (closing cycle). In the first case the person might be a good accountant, able to work internally with numbers and the assessment of material resources, while in the second case the person might be good at launching moneymaking schemes. In the case of Mercury and Venus there are also further possibilities involving phase, since their conjunctions can either be inferior (the planet is between the Sun and Earth) or superior (the planet is on the far side of the Sun). An inferior conjunction is about the planet transmitting to Earth, a superior one is about it receiving information from the cosmic mind of the universe.
This raises the question of what phase the conjunction is in when it is exact, which brings us to the second perspective, proximity. Proximity is only applicable for conjunctions with the Sun and requires some explanation. The Sun is a powerful entity, easily capable of causing blindness with the sheer command of Light it has. This capacity to inflict blindness is not only literal but metaphorical as well, since astrologically planets close to the Sun disappear from the sky entirely until they re-emerge from the coronal aura. This can take some time with slower moving planets since the blinding radiance of the Sun extends a great deal of zodiacal distance from its core. Horary astrology and now increasing numbers of natal astrologers recognise that the Sun and perhaps also the Moon behave differently than the planets do, specifically that their greater illumination lends them a bigger hand in forming the influences called aspects with other celestial bodies. The corona of the Sun is so bright that any planet within about 8° of the Sun will not be seen at all. This is called being ‘combust’. Even beyond that point and up to about 17° away the brightness of the Sun is still overpowering and the planet is faint. This is called being ‘under the sunbeams’. If a planet is right at the core of the Sun, within 0° 17′, then it is utterly consumed and this is called being ‘cazimi’, a state wherein it is both closing and starting a new cycle simultaneously, and so it gains a plasmic expression able to manifest in both directions at once. So there are really three kinds of solar conjunction – cazimi, combust and under sunbeams – each of which has a somewhat different effect. I have written about these differences earlier, and refer you to that article (here) with its many informative comments for more details.
With these nuances understood you can add more specific detail to interpretation of any conjunction with the Sun, taking it beyond its sign characteristics and temple position. Any conjunction with the Sun, assuming it takes place in the same sign and temple of the chart, will serve to place great emphasis on that sign or temple, and the person will expend great energy in that area of life in the way described by the sign, but these nuances can add extra details and flare to bring a more unique expression of these qualities.
I will now share with you some thoughts and guidance on how to interpret the various conjunctions involving the Sun. These are of course not definitive interpretations as there are simply too many ways in which human beings can manifest them, but they are hopefully good starting points for figuring that uniqueness out.
This aspect indicates a New Moon at birth i.e. no visible Moon in the sky. This life will include a major new beginning in at least one area – most likely this will be connected to the temple of the conjunction but it may also stem from the temples ruled by Cancer and Leo, the signs of the Lights (this same rule holds true for the signs ruling other planetary conjunctions described below) Being born under the New Moon is an indication of self assurance arising from the fusion between soul and spirit, with the traits of the sign of the zodiac in which this conjunction takes place assuming great importance in the chart as a whole because they are suffused with identification and vital energy. The outward Electric radiation of spirit (Sun) is fused with the inward Magnetic way we feel about ourself, thus, we are able to radiate our own inner feelings well but often lack objectivity since we cannot instinctively tell apart our inner being from what we feel and think about ourself. We are much more likely to lose ourselves in the story we tell ourselves about our life.
This aspect is often helpful when it comes to constructing the Soul Mirrors (i.e. introspecting on oneself to identify the astral character traits we express) but brings greater challenges to the process of connecting with the mental realm and the spark of pure consciousness because we are so heavily invested in astral being. In psychological terms we are deeply subjective about life and need to gain objectivity on it, but in attempting to do so the power and animation behind our own life and its story always tries to eclipse and take over the unfolding of events and impose a narrative structure on them that maintains the story. Our life seems to have a narrative momentum, a magical power for the story to tell itself while we try to seperate ourselves from it.
Strong personalities emerge under the New Moon but they are not usually dominant socially because the New Moon is the dark Moon of the Mystery and so these people are often powerfully lurking in the background or are powerful figures in a private or concealed way – they like to hide their inner vulnerability behind a powerful projection of quiet confidence. With both Lights in one sign, as is usually the case, the personality becomes more self aware overall – the dominant zodiac sign traits help there – but has to pick apart the whys of the way it is, the programming has to be peeled away from the core self (which has usually had a major role in directing it) so that the qualities of the Moon sign can be viewed more objectively. Overall there can be initiatory levels in attaining an objective perception on the personality and behaviour until the deeper subjective responses (which feel right and a part of our core nature because they are so full of consciousness and life experience) are identified. Once that process is undertaken the inner light of being begins to shine through the personality much more directly and spontaneously and with greater power than is possible for others – these people can have presence off the charts and are often deemed extremely attractive or charming by contemporary standards of beauty and charisma.
Examples: Marlon Brando (Aries), Katherine Hepburn (Taurus), Queen Victoria (Gemini), Harrison Ford (Cancer), Barbara Windsor (Leo), Ian Holm (Virgo), Lech Walesa (Libra), Karl Weierstrass (Scorpio), Otto Dix (Sagittarius), Prince Albert Victor (Capricorn), Brandon Lee (Aquarius), John Barrowman (Pisces).
This conjunction is fairly common because of the closeness that binds Mercury in orbit to the Sun throughout the year. If, as the average astrologer will do, an orb of 7 or 8 degrees is allowed for the conjunction, then about 25% of human beings can be said to display this aspect. When the Sun is conjunct Mercury there is a fusion between the rational and intellectual mind and the conscious awareness of the spirit, resulting in greater capacity to reason in the consciousness and awareness of one’s own mind as well as a continuous expression of the individual being through thought. But the closer the conjunction the less easy a matter it will be for us to detach from our own thinking as we will be more heavily invested in it. What this means in psychological terms is that our consciousness is too closely identified and connected up with our opinions and thinking processes so that it is harder to be objective and ideas tend to be self centred. The zodiac sign in the background describes a very powerful influence on our mind.
Probably the main negative potential of this aspect is overemphasis on the importance of opinion and mind, a lack of real objectivity on oneself in some way, the difficulty of gaining an objective perception of prejudices and suppositions at work or some need to tone down an emphasis on our own ideas. If these can be overcome or compensated by other chart factors there are generally only benefits in the form of a rich inner mental experience of life. This conjunction essentially confers greater self knowledge and awareness and the ability to express one’s spirit in words and through language in a way which others, born without the conjunction, cannot do so easily. The study of knowledge, books and other forms of learning will often appeal more from an earlier age, and the individual will possess a good memory and learning capacity, be reasonably well informed on a variety of subjects, and have a natural understanding of the power of communication and words. Yet there will be too many ideas that do not receive enough consistent development, a great deal of energy wasted on things that do not approach completion or reach conclusions because the path is abandoned for a more exciting and newer one.
Our consciousness becomes very keen on good communication but may also be tempted to be flexible with facts when being persuasive. The consciousness is silver tongued and able to persuade and convince others through a commanding use of vital energies in speech and word, essentially allowing the spirit to shine unimpeded through the expression of ideas. We are therefore an effective communicator and may also have great vocal talents (mimicry and singing seem common talents, but language skills are also prevalent). We enjoy intellectual stimulation and look for avenues through which to contact others, we are vitalized by new facts and new information – there is a kind of fascinating lure to it so long as it does not directly threaten our own opinion. We tend to talk animatedly and somewhat confidently about ourself and our interests and once we have learned to gain greater mental objectivity on ourself we will have a powerful tool at our disposal which utilizes the creative power of the mind and spirit acting as one. Thus this is an aspect of magic and the magician. When we align thought (Mercury) with radiant being (Sun), we can manifest thought within the boundaries of the universal laws. This is an aspect of magic in that the inner light of consciousness naturally brings life to our ideas, giving animation to thought forms. For most people, however, this magic remains unnoticed and the benefits of this conjunction relate to being able to focus the mind and to charge thoughts with vital energy so that they are clearly and brightly expressed.
Examples: J.P Morgan (Aries), Barbra Streisand (Taurus), Anne Frank (Gemini), Diana Princess of Wales (Cancer), Gene Roddenberry (Leo), Oliver Stone (Virgo), Christopher Reeve (Libra), Jodie Foster (Scorpio), Jimi Hendrix (Sagittarius), Annie Lennox (Capricorn), George Oppenheimer (Aquarius), L. Ron Hubbard (Pisces).
In many cases this conjunction brings about an easier time handling emotions, as the conscious awareness represented by the Sun is shining its light on the world of feelings, Venus. These planets marry well and often produce genuine emotional warmth, a highly refined and affectionate sense of feeling along with artistic and aesthetic aspirations. With this fusion we are also made more gentle, loving and charming. We express ourself in an affectionate manner and enjoy the company of other people, especially those who can share a love of art and beauty. Often this conjunction makes for talent in music or art, confers physical beauty and attractiveness, increases our personal charm, and/or gives us a winning smile – we are in some way a ‘charmer’ who knows how to use social skills to great effect but not necessarily always to our advantage. The attention such an aspect brings can be unwanted or, if frivolously played with, start a fire we cannot control.
Greater conviction in our own feelings is also being conferred here. The binding of the light of the conscious awareness to the world of feelings produces a stronger will and command over them. The muses are drawn to play with us and we can then consciously identify with artistic motifs as if we are living embodiments of them, like living Romeos or Juliets, or real life Monet paintings. The identification we have with symbols and astral forces can lead us to live out a story that resonates with those things, to become an avatar of their manifestation in the world, but we will retain the power to withdraw that attention and return to ourselves. So our feelings and the natural, conscious awareness we have of the feelings of others and the world of art can become something of a leading light. The Sun is also a bringer of life and animation through heat and we all understand what hot feelings can feel like – they can be very catching, like flames, and given this capacity and our natural gifts it is prudent to monitor the matches we strike carefully.
We can also be idealistic and easily hurt, our soft skinned astral body needing some padding. In this case this is primarily arising because we are a sensitized lover of peace and harmony in life, but life is full of troubles and discord. Romantic drives are high, so we reach for the stars and seek to live out an inner feeling through relations with others, an inner feeling that they may not be able to reflect back, at which point the hurt begins. Relationships can also become too focused on what we feel and what we need to feel. Another danger with this conjunction is the tendency to put aside painful or ugly situations and smooth them over with a false bonhomie. The desire to win lots of money through charm or speculation is also sometimes strong.
While it no doubt brings great charm the true benefits of this aspect are elsewhere. If the feelings can be given a creative expression in the light of our being they will reveal many things about our inner nature and the expression of our inner light, our Sun, will feel far more complete. The task with this aspect is to integrate our feeling nature into our conscious awareness giving it expression in our relationships and bringing both brilliance and clarity to our awareness of the unique value of all feelings, even the unpleasant ones.
Examples: Robert Downey Jr. (Aries), Ludwig Wittgenstein (Taurus), Kylie Minogue (Gemini), Nikola Tesla (Cancer), Whitney Houston (Leo), Lily Tomlin (Virgo), Aleister Crowley (Libra), Leonardo DiCaprio (Scorpio), Emily Dickinson (Sagittarius), Johannes Kepler (Sagittarius), Eddie Izzard (Aquarius), Victor Hugo (Pisces).
All aspects of Mars to the Sun increase the heat, charge or force of our vital energy, and the conjunction perhaps more so than any other. This makes us much more strong willed, ambitious and motivated. How we handle this great energy for striving to succeed and overcome adversity will determine whether we are filled with bitterness, frustration and rage, or become heroic examples of willpower and motivation in action. Much lies in how we will handle defeat.
Our personal desires and assertiveness are very directly a part of our individual self awareness and the tone of our being is inflamed with them. This can make us determined, confident, hard working and energetic but also impulsive, arrogant, and often violent, caustic and acidic, tempestuous or volatile. Judgmentalism is often a problem, as we find wrong in what others do so what we do is more right. We have a love of the spirit of conquest, competition, heroics and adventure and are motivated by anything that provides an outlet for our boundless need to prove ourselves against a worthy foe or challenge. We get a real kick out of initiating risky projects and impulsive drives, at times acting too impulsively for our own or others good, the reason for this being that the adrenaline and thrill of these moments shuts down all thinking and propels our consciousness into survival mode, focusing it on the immediate moment, the cutting edge of action wherein this aspect thrives. This aspect is thus found in the charts of many people with connections to the military, emergency services or competitive sports. We can be driven by great urges and primal passions that must be tempered with the right motive.
Another key lesson for this aspect is as I have said how it handles defeats, which will come, as well as how it handles its need for defending itself. If the need to defend ourselves arises it is because we are conscious of being attacked, but often these people will react as if they are being continually attacked because they are actually looking to just sharpen the edge of their swords in a fight, and so their guard is always up, resulting in a life of constant threat and strife. So we must often learn how to lower our guard and let people in with this conjunction, and probably also need to place less severe emphasis on what differences mean. Is what we want so important after we consider the consequences of taking it by force?
So there is motivating desire and restless near endless ambition, there is often judgmentalism, a quicker, hotter temper, power (often physical, but sometimes astral or mental too), a faster heartbeat and metabolism, quick temper and impatience, we become more easily embarrassed (the blood rises to the cheeks more quickly), there is a more assertive nature, and there is with time and the consequences of defeat a guardedness, a readiness to defend which is in effect also a readiness to do battle, and this readiness actually creates antagonism and conflict because it draws in the challengers which we keep consciously seeking anyway. This is why this aspect is traditionally malefic.
So this conjunction is a sign of someone who knows how to come out fighting when necessary and to struggle against oppression, tyranny, difficulty and adversity with persistence and patience, but much depends on whether or not we are able to take losing gracefully. If we are a bad loser the resentment, frustration, anger and rage will destroy our chances to get ahead and succeed, we will waste and squander the great power within us. We need to know how to let go of the feelings that come with being thwarted and just carry on without them. From time to time we may also need to slow down or put our foot on the brakes as we tend to rush and invite panic – there is a traditional warning about accidents involving heat, speed, blades and our own recklessness. We want to get ahead to the next step but we must finish the battles we have already started first, thus overloading ourselves with adversity. We can also be very willful, finding it difficult to separate what we want (Mars) from who we are (Sun) so that when we are disappointed by life the blow is felt directly to the core of our being. We may need to work at untangling the Sun and Mars so that we can perceive and discern the difference between our seeking of powerful desires and the spiritual core of our being wherein there is only the desire to awaken to our true power.
Examples: Napoleon III of France (Aries), Shirley MacLaine (Taurus), Johnny Weismuller (Gemini), Nancy Reagan (Cancer), Mata Hari (Leo), Mary Shelley (Virgo), Gore Vidal (Libra), Grace Kelly (Scorpio), Bob Hawke (Sagittarius), David Bowie (Capricorn), Will Young (Aquarius), Elizabeth Taylor (Pisces).
The conjunction of the Sun and Jupiter generally brings greater joy and opportunity in the appropriate temple area but also dogmas and pomposity. It amplifies the voltage of the Suns power and broadens and generalizes its influence more, causing the character to take on exaggerated and highly visible or notable characteristics of the Sun sign. So the normally acquisitive Sun in Taurus becomes a hoarder or major accumulator. Jupiter is an expanding awareness of spiritual law and faith and so the consciousness is somehow fused with this and there arises a need to believe in and ultimately place faith in something, even if it just ones own capacity to grow and learn. Any planet conjunct Jupiter has its powers thus increased, and the Sun is such an important life giving body that the entire life usually benefits from this belief and sense of faith. It is possible this belief will be misguided and placed in something that is toxic or corrupted, however, and even if not we often have superheroic expectations. The danger is also always there that what we believe in will become principles that we lay down as undeniably true and that this will lead to moralizing or a superiority complex.
We are usually on the jolly side or at least philosophical about setbacks, generally optimistic and enthusiastic about life, and this manifests good fortune. Our air of confidence can have a stimulating effect upon others, and we are often generous and good humored. We like to make a big grand impression and come across with a majestic and indulgent flourish. We are keen on anything which broadens the horizons of the spirit, such as religion, philosophy, teachings and travel, and – provided the dogmatic side of this aspect does not dominate – an innate tolerance for different faiths arises from a deep ethical conviction that humanity is essentially benevolent, exploratory and truth-loving. We therefore like to make up our own mind and let others do the same.
However, moderation is not in Jupiter’s repertoire so problems can arise through a lack of restraint and we can have difficulty with discipline, saving or indulgence. These problems can be seen in various areas such as speaking, eating and drinking or in any activity we just cannot get enough of. We need to be aware of our tendency to over indulge and additionally our great optimism and joyous spirit can lead to the development of dogmatic self importance and grandiosity, or the over-optimistic laying of grand plans without attention to details can lead to mistakes or disappointments, after which we question whether we were right to believe. However, our irrepressible spirit can usually see us through disasters – we are aware that there is always more to discover, more adventure and new fortune to be found, and that life goes on even after the worst deluges and storms strike.
Examples: Maya Angelou (Aries), Ritchie Valens (Taurus), Brooke Shields (Gemini), Ross Perot (Cancer), Maureen O’Hara (Leo), Alfred Jarry (Virgo), Louis XIII of France (Libra), Sally Field (Scorpio), William Blake (Sagittarius), Donna Summer (Capricorn), Robbie Williams (Aquarius), Sidney Poitier (Pisces).
Through this conjunction self discipline is increased along with a number of related qualities like patience, practicality, level-headedness, realism, persistence and endurance. The staying power of the zodiac sign is boosted. Our attitude to responsibilities becomes more serious and this is generally a good thing because it allows us to accept them dutifully and more gracefully. We feel that taking our share of responsibilities is only right. Sometimes however we will take on too much and wear ourself out, or possibly take the blame for things when we should not, simply so that something gets done. This applies an internal pressure that will later emerge as tiredness, exhaustion or bottled up frustrations. The intrinsic nature is to assume responsibility for things and take on a directorial role around which life can be organised and structured, so we are a dependable rock; people know where they stand with us. Yet we are in flux, too, no matter what we might expect of ourselves, and yet we resist change to remain stable and dependable, and so when must go through change everything built around us must be restructured.
We will tend to shine greatest when given something important and weighty to do or build, when we have some ambition to pursue. However we have some difficulties to overcome before we feel comfortable in just being who we are. It may be difficult to overcome pessimism, shyness and a sense of personal inadequacy, which if allowed to persist can become apathy and depression and drain our vitality quite quickly. We become depressed when we apply the pressure in this conjunction to ourself in harsh internal self judgment, in the thought that we are not (never!) good enough, but externalizing this pressure can make us stern, strict, authoritarian and inflexible and this can become oppressive ands unpleasant to others, keeping us isolated as the troubles and responsibilities mount up. Saturn is intimately connected with what we fear, particularly our fear of failure and inadequacy and the Sun is a symbol of what makes us feel alive, lights us up, and brings us a warming inner sense of wellbeing. With this conjunction, self confidence will be a resource we have to learn to build, cultivate and manage, our self esteem being limited and dependent on progress towards major life milestones. We need to learn to see failure as success in disguise, since so long as we draw the appropriate lesson from it we move forwards.
Saturn is also the planet of time. When conjunct the Sun, it is often easier for us to be rooted in the now moment. Our concentration increases and we gain a natural timekeeping faculty. Another effect is that we come into ourself more as time passes – as we learn important lessons about who they really are, what makes us tick, we take more from them earlier than is the norm. All these lessons are quickly integrated into conscious awareness and so the major lessons in life are consciously integrated and the expression of self restructured to reflect them. This influence of time also leads to steady accomplishment towards well planned out goals, a creeping up your own mountain, with the greatest moments of success or failure being also tied to the Saturn cycle, so much of this depends on how well the Saturn return and the Saturn cycle itself go.
There is also a karmic dimension to this conjunction. The consciousness is trying to mature and grow in comprehensive understanding of life. It has bound itself to certain inescapable lessons that come with certain restrictions and limitations, possibly also suffering, in order to manifest the karmic curriculum. It always signifies some important duty or obligation in life and usually also signifies that we will encounter difficulties as a way to build character.
Examples: Francis Ford Coppola (Aries), Al Pacino (Taurus), Carl Linnaeus (Gemini), Elizabeth Durack (Cancer), Arnold Schwarzenegger (Leo), Barry Sheene (Virgo), Mark Hamill (Libra), Whoopi Goldberg (Scorpio), Philip K. Dick (Sagittarius), Tracey Ullman (Capricorn), Wolfgang Mozart (Aquarius), Justin Bieber (Pisces).
This conjunction is still being researched but I have seen some common threads in its manifestations. It seems to give great empathy for the suffering of others while also fracturing or compartmentalizing the ability to express the Suns light, which must then be made whole; there is a journey of self discovery to make which is also a healing journey. We are thus born with a wounded sense of our own identity or some kind of challenge in life related to being sensitive to pain. At some stage in our early life we may have suffered some kind of trauma contributing to an adult fear of pain but this situation can arise in many ways, not just through childhood suffering.
Essentially, the life path is often primed so that we become a healer. By remaking ourself after being broken we not only heal ourself, we reaffirm life’s eternal and unbreakable existence, the transcendent nature of consciousness is brought into play and we also get to reconstruct and redefine ourown core identify, thereby improving it. As we do so our compassionate response to suffering guides us in locating and healing others pain.
Chiron/Sun conjunctions also seem to show up a lot in the lives of teachers, guides, trailblazers and mentors, people who illuminate a path through wildernesses of ideas and concepts as well as through physical terrain. They seem to have an instinct for tracking things that can manifest in many ways, from a talent with research to figuring out how the puzzle pieces of a mystery connect, dot by dot.
A common problem seems to be that we are extremely sensitive to suffering, so much so that it is itself a kind of handicap that holds us back from fully experiencing all that life has to offer. This sensitivity is sensed by others, who may have the impression that behind our eyes there is a a wounded spirit, saddened and hurt by the ways of the world. We may need to make the transformation from victim to survivor (and thus then teacher and guide), or we may need to learn to see the suffering in the world in a new light. However we are not keen on doing things by the books, and are drawn to making our own custom designed way or alternative path. So there is both a bit of Saturn in that we take on the weight of the worlds suffering, but also a bit of Uranus in that we insist on cutting our own trail through the jungle.
Examples: Henry Mancini (Aries), Audrey Hepburn (Taurus), Harlan Ellison (Gemini), Ringo Starr (Cancer), Heinrich Bullinger (Leo), Jean Renoir (Virgo), Richard Carpenter (Libra), Prince Charles (Scorpio), Noel Coward (Sagittarius), Cary Grant (Capricorn), Christian Dior (Aquarius), Prince Edward (Pisces).
Uranus in conjunction to the Sun increases the oscillation of the individual spirit, the consciousness, and accelerates it to a vibratory level where it more consciously connects with the collective spirit of humanity, nations, societies, and ideologies and with the potentials within the future. It is able to gain insight and perceive the collective connections between people, ideas, mass media and what we call coincidence.
There is with this conjunction generally a great emphasis upon the importance of being true to self and thus we are firmly individualistic and fight hard for personal rights and liberties (both our own and others because we see them as the same thing). We are impulsive and determined to be an individual. We want to do things our own way and will dig in our heels if anyone tries to stop us or persuade us of a more sensible and reliable approach. We have the ability to be a unique, charismatic and original leader but there is a basic instability in us which can lead to great confusion and eccentricity – we can become chaos engines. The spirit is seeking its own specialness. In extreme cases this gets out of control and we think that we are special because we are ‘chosen’ by the masses for something. We are forever restless because we are easily unsettled and cannot wind down easily due to the fact that we are constantly seeking new and vivid experiences, a proclivity which is also behind many of the sudden changes we will go through in life. However, this journey of the unexpected and possibly shocking is actually a classic voyage of self discovery, as we will potentially come to great insight and inspiration into the human condition. Every person has quirks but these quirks, whatever they are, are very close to the conscious surface here, demanding liberation and expression, and so we will gain a reputation for spontaneity and eccentricity as we ride the waves of our own erratic inner impulses.
The consciousness thrives on freedom and paradoxically burns for both connectivity and independence. We resist any kind of binding contract and are stifled by monotony and predictability. Our character is inventive and innovative and we like to experiment, even with the wildest ideas, because we seek to experience things for ourselves rather than take another’s word, and because we are stimulated by freedom, diversity and the unusual we have many interests and a dislike of traditional routine which makes specialization more difficult. We have the task of fully expressing our individuality as testimony to the uniqueness of all individuals. We attract synchronicity and find ourself in supportive groups of people as a result of serendipity and chance. There will be much work for us to do in groups of like mind and our vision of the future will be joined by many others with whom we will form our own network of thought – a group intelligence which will share our vision and guide the group towards its manifestation. This will have a profound and illuminating effect on the crafting of our individual spirit.
Examples: Jayne Mansfield (Aries), Roy Orbison (Taurus), Donald Trump (Gemini), Meryl Streep (Cancer), Antonio Banderes (Leo), Charlie Sheen (Virgo), Dwight D. Eisenhower (Libra), Paul Rosbaud (Scorpio), Walt Disney (Sagittarius), Louis Pasteur (Capricorn), William Hopper (Aquarius), Jerry Lewis (Pisces).
The conjunction of these two planets produces a high attunement to the spiritual or invisible worlds and thus heightens our psychic receptivity to all non-material energies. It can embody as a psychological complex which can make us deeply self sacrificing or a potentially maddening cycle where fantasy and/or substances play a strong part either as a creative channel or as an escape. We are somewhat dreamy, slipping in and out of focus, which can weaken our awareness of self identity and our concentration levels. Yet ultimately this loose grip on our own ego identity serves to liberate us from the material world as it leads us into the realms of the nebulous and arcane.
Self knowledge, and thus self confidence, tends to slip through our fingers like sand and we are also easily deceived, both by others and by ourself – this is a universal prompt to develop psychically and embark on the quest of self discovery. Continually, our sense of self and a strong self identity (Sun) are mysteriously dissolved by the oceanic, collective forces of Neptune, forces which subtly and invisibly erode any self knowledge we gain. It may seem as if things literally disappear, both within and without us, that life is like a film or music, a series of fleeting impressions and waves of feeling which vanish like smoke just as quickly as they form. And way back in the depths of our being, there is this voice saying “None of this is real….” That voice is correct, the separate sense of self identity is an illusion, in truth we are all the universal consciousness experiencing itself. There is far far more to the universe than just the physical – dimensions are stacked up one on top of another into infinity, and yet each simultaneously interpenetrates the others; universes encircle one another from the atomic and cellular to the cosmic, ever increasing circles of creation merging into one another to form a symphonic whole. These people sense this at the core of their being. At heart they are a visionary of some kind and are psychically open, attuned to invisible realities or other dimensions through their imagination.
So with this conjunction we are made ‘other worldly’, dreamy, possibly artistic or musical, attract psychic phenomena, are drawn to spiritual practices, and may become easily entangled with drugs, glamour and other forms of escapism from the drab and stifling roles thrust on us by the mundane world. Finding some way to express the inner vision we have is often crucial. The form of imaginative channel is not as important as the fact that we do something to release the energy, for if held inside and lacking expression it manifests as a blurring of the boundaries between fact and fantasy in everyday life, and an inability to focus ones energy through lack of self consciousness. We can get paranoid, delusional and lost. We should try to activate our creativity rather than escaping through addictive behaviour.
Examples: Leon Blum (Aries), Harry S. Truman (Taurus), M.C. Escher (Gemini), Frida Kahlo (Cancer), Fidel Castro (Leo), Sean Connery (Virgo), Michael Douglas (Libra), Peter Jackson (Scorpio), Margaret Tudor (Sagittarius), Louis Pasteur (Capricorn), Thomas Edison (Aquarius), Mary Elizabeth Garrett (Pisces).
One of the most important things to note here is that because of the collective scope of Pluto, the situations and circumstances described below may not be ours but those of others whom we deal with which then become transferred to us, for example we could be working in therapeutic areas where traumatized people are encountered daily.
This is an incredibly intense and powerful combination of forces to be born under. The Sun is the spark of consciousness which brings us life on Earth. Pluto is one of the least understood of the planets and holds many secrets, both for the living world and the worlds beyond our living world, but essentially it is a cthonic force of transformation through the elimination and shedding of outworn shells of energy – i.e. it is an eternal rebirth force, a force almost counter to the creative life force of the Sun, because Pluto is a destructive regenerative energy as opposed to the Suns creative regenerative energy. Yet both share a common thread in that they are both involved in the processes of growth and spiritual consciousness – life and death, with rebirth eternally between the two. One acts to bring the pure energy of spirit into focus through the creation of life and being (the Sun), while the other brings decay and eventual death of old created patterns, reducing the energy to its most basic state, from where it returns to the cycle (Pluto). Each feeds the other, and the joining of these two in a chart is like the joining of a positive and negative current – sparks are bound to fly and ultimate transcendence or total self immolation are destined; the choice of which fate we are dealt rests entirely in our hands, for the result will be a manifestation of our own conscious choices to create or destroy in our life. The end result however will be the same – our core identity will be utterly reborn.
We are compelled towards liberating ourself and/or others from the effects of intense and almost obsessive drives and fixations and are also drawn into the occult or taboo areas of life. With such vital intensity comes vulnerability and the feeling that total self control is all important or else we will be swept away, overwhelmed by occult or psychological forces. Hence there is often a problem with manipulation, jealousy, possessiveness and obsession when born under this aspect and these urges can potentially present externally or consume and devour the self from within. This is also a dangerous aspect as it contains a degree of death defying courage which can lead us to place ourselves in dangerous situations for a certain life affirming thrill similar to Sun conjunct Mars, but with much more of an underlying death wish. In most cases there is this deeply rooted death wish, or at least a compelling but difficult to acknowledge compulsion to put oneself in situations which will cause a termination of characteristics we wish to be free of, a kind of auto-transform mechanism which continuously places us in the situations which will bring about an empowerment through the facing of our darkest nature or that of life. Also, in order to provide the raw experiential material that will compel the spirit to dive into the deepest and most occluded dark waters, we encounter the darker side of life – death, violence, controlling and destructive relations etc – as catalysts more often or more directly than most. Like Orpheus, whose love for his partner was so intense that he ventured into the underworld itself to rescue her soul, people born under the mixing of the Sun and Pluto delve deep into the caverns of human experiences to bring back the wisdom hidden there, but their unending suspicion that there is always more mysteriously kept from their awareness can make them distrustful of fatally flawed. To enable them to go into these dark places these individuals are given titanic gifts – superhuman willpower and resilience, cast iron faith in themselves, magical or occult faculties and/or penetrating and magnetic charisma – but the greatest gift they have is the commanding power of their consciousness which can bring about effective and immediate transformation through deep illumination when it is guided by inner clarity and force of presence. In other words, they have an almost innate magical power to create transformations around them. People stuck to the status quo back away in terror.
Controlling the emotional urges that arise from the depths (or finding ways to deal with them in others) is just the first step here because the emotional urges still have great power to take control of our behaviour and life. Sometimes we need to learn to let go of control in order to find peace and regain control (the so called control freak), other times we have to know when we need to remove ourselves from danger and how not to perpetuate our vulnerability. Surrender is key in some way but this does not mean lashing out without regard for the consequences, it means surrender of the ego by moving to the eye of the tornado, a point of peace where the emotions flow around us but do not compel us, a place of power where we are the witness to intense emotions moving through our consciousness – often so strong that they are actually collective emotions we are channeling. Spiritual practices often play an important role in this letting go. Letting go and giving control over to a power that knows better is sometimes the only way to escape the trap this aspect can become and unlocking the unlimited potential it contains. What it represents is the power to resurrect life out of decayed and otherwise dead material, recycling what has outlived its use by creating something new and bright out of it. Know then that the process of life, while presenting many intense upheavals and transformations, will, if we place deep trust in its flow, lead us to perform the most famous of alchemical experiments – the transmutation of base metals into gold.
Examples: Emile Zola (Aries), Georges Braque (Taurus), Errol Flynn (Gemini), Hunter S. Thompson (Cancer), Mark Knopfler (Leo), Stephen Fry (Virgo), Alicia Silverstone (Libra), Katy Perry (Scorpio), Princess Aiko (Sagittarius), (no example available for Capricorn, but many young children now have this placement), John Woodcock Graves (Aquarius), Galileo (Pisces).
That’s all for now, thank you for reading, see you next month, and don’t forget to love each other!
David, thank you for your insightful article. 🙂 I have a few questions if I may. The orb you use for combust conjunctions is 7 or 8°? Also – how important are generational aspects, and what orb do you use for them? My AC is Aquarius, and I have Uranus conjunct Neptune 3°. (I was born in May 1991), does this mean that Neptune is an important planet for me because it conjuncts the ruler of my chart? ? I am aware this last question is not related to the article but I always wondered about this, and there isn’t much information on it. Thank you so much!
hi! yes, that big an orb for solar conjunctions is still effective and I would consider it combust. Generational aspects (such as Uranus square Pluto) are made more important when they contact a Light, angle or personal planet. In your case I would use Saturn as chart ruler with Uranus as a secondary (collective) ruler. I would give more emphasis to Uranus conj. Neptune than if the asc were a different sign, and I would say that as you get a handle on the lessons of Saturn as chart ruler all the deeper significations of Uranus become unlocked as the rulership gets ‘handed over’ to collective issues.