Friday, 20 April 2018

Video: Mars & Saturn in Capricorn ~ A Useful Collaboration?

With Mars and Saturn both currently in Capricorn, it’s a signature of hard work. 

But with both planets ‘dignified’ in the sign of the goat, there’s the potential for a very useful collaboration:

Wednesday, 14 March 2018

Gary Oldman - From Sid Vicious to Winston Churchill via Count Dracula

 This is Gary Oldman’s time, receiving universal praise for his role as Winston Churchill in Darkest Hour and picking up Best Actor awards at the Oscars, Golden Globes and BAFTAs, to name just a few.

Darkest Hour tells how World War II British Prime Minister Churchill changed history by making the decision, with the odds stacked against him, to fight on against the threat of invasion from the seemingly unstoppable Nazi forces, refusing to negotiate for peace with Hitler, despite pressure from his parliament and the War Cabinet.

The story picks up key themes in Oldman’s chart. Sun, Moon and Mercury Conjunct in the martial, warrior sign of Aries in his 10th House, reflects his character’s decision to fight, not negotiate, reflected in Churchill’s famous, we shall fight on the beaches speech. We also see Oldman’s Sun in Aries in the 10th House in the movie’s tagline A man with the heart of a nation. And all those Aries planets are disposited by Mars in Aquarius, a placement of stubbornly acting upon one’s own convictions, acting independently but for the good of the whole.
Darkest Hour also uses the taglines Never give up. Never give in. and Never, never, never surrender.
These also reflect Oldman’s Aries warrior spirit, but also his Fixed T Square, that most unyielding of aspect patterns. The T Square is comprised of Uranus in Leo in the 2nd House Opposite Mars in Aquarius in the 8th House with an apex of Neptune and North Node in Scorpio in the 5th House. 

Jupiter, also in the 5th, joins this stubborn Fixed T Square and at the very last degree of Libra, 29 degrees and 56 minutes no less, is an apt reflection of Churchill’s refusal to negotiate with the Nazis. Jupiter, Neptune and North Node in the 5th House at the apex, speak of his career choice as an actor, with Neptune representing the glamorous illusion of the movies. The North Node brings perhaps a sense of destiny around his choice. Jupiter offers faith and opportunity and in the critical 29th degree adds a ‘do or die’ quality. Uranus in the 2nd in Leo is about valuing being at the centre of things, but on one’s own terms, in one’s own way. It is also more generally about earning money unconventionally or erratically and opposite Mars in Aquarius in the 8th suggests tension around the sharing of money and resources within partnerships. It stands to reason that his four divorces would bring financial stress, even, or especially, in the big money world of Hollywood.

Venus and Mars are both in Aquarius in the 8th, but too wide to be in a Conjunction. Venus is Conjunct Chiron. Is there some clue here, as to why Oldman has been married five times? Oldman is known to be intensely protective of his private life, as you might expect with a personal planet in the 8th House, eschewing celebrity and the circus that comes with it. However in the buzz around awards season, his personal life was laid open by his third wife who claimed in a newspaper article that he ‘ruined’ her life and ‘stole’ her children. Neptune in the 5th, Square Mars and Uranus is also evoked here.

The Jupiter, Neptune, North Node Conjunction has also manifested in alcoholism with a spell in rehab and a drink driving charge in 1991, when transiting Neptune Squared his Moon and Mercury.
His Sun is in an out of sign Square with Saturn in Sagittarius and both Sun and Saturn are connected to Pluto by Quincunx and Trine respectively. Furthermore, his Mercury in Aries is in a Sesquiquadrate aspect with Pluto.  Pluto is also in a Sextile to Jupiter, linking it to his T-Square. This can be dark stuff and reflects many of the characters he has played and/or the themes of many of the films he has starred in.  This configuration also symbolises how he is said to reinvent himself for every role. Here are a few examples:

Darkest Hour, 2018, playing the lead character Winston Churchill, who famously suffered from dark moods, which he labelled Black Dog. Oldman is unrecognisable as himself in his portrayal of Churchill.

Sid and Nancy, 1986, in which he portrayed real life punk rocker Sid Vicious’s relationship with Nancy
Spungen and his fatal drug overdose following her death.

The lead role in Prick Up Your Ears, 1987, which tells the true story of the extraordinary life and violent death of gay British playwright Joe Orton.

His roles in Sid and Nancy and Prick up your Ears depicted damaged young men whose lives were cut short, reflected by Solar Arc (SA) Mars Opposite natal Pluto during that time. They also won him great acclaim and opened the door to Hollywood. SA North Node and Neptune were also Trine his Sun and during this period he also had transiting Pluto opposite Moon.

In 1991, he played Lee Harvey Oswald in Oliver Stone’s JFK, a conspiracy theory movie which posited that there was more to the official story of Oswald’s assassination of John F. Kennedy.  Pluto was transiting Oldman’s Venus-Chiron Conjunction by Square, with transiting Uranus applying to Square his Moon and transiting Neptune midway through Squaring his Moon-Mercury.

It’s interesting to note here that in all of the above he played real historical figures which is perhaps shown by the Trine from the Sun and Moon to Uranus, a configuration which suggests the need for authenticity.

In 1992, he played the ultimate dark character, Count Dracula, in Bram Stoker’s Dracula, with SA Saturn Square Jupiter and SA Sun in Taurus Opposite his Neptune in Scorpio, activating his T-Square, allowing themes of vampiric control and desire to come through.

In 1994, he played corrupt DEA officer Norman Stansfield in Léon, the Professional. His character is often named as one of the best villains in cinema. This release had SA Saturn just past a Square with Oldman’s Jupiter.

In more recent years he played Sirius Black in the Harry Potter Movies (from 2004) and in 2005 played police commissioner James Gordon in Christopher Nolan’s Batman Begins, reprising the character in The Dark Knight and The Dark Knight Rises. While neither of these characters were villains, they inhabited worlds full of evils, with Sirius Black in hiding, the victim of a wrongful conviction and James Gordon helping Batman overcome dark forces in Gotham City, In 2011, Oldman earned his first Oscar nomination for playing British spy George Smiley in Tinker Tailor Soldier Spy, with transiting Saturn Conjunct and transiting Neptune Trine his 5th House Jupiter and SA Uranus separating from a Opposition to his Sun.

As for his current transits, he has Solar Arc Pluto Conjunct Jupiter in the 5th House denoting a major milestone in his acting career. Solar Arc Mars has just passed over his Sun in Aries the 10th House, suggesting recognition, respect and attention for playing a strong male character.

And the Secondary Progressed Moon - that great timer - is currently Sextile his 10th House Mercury and has just Trined Venus and in September last year Sextiled his 10th House Moon, another indication of a peak in his career and reputation.

© Mandi Lockley BA, Dip.LSA

This article is adapted from the current edition of Infinity Astrology Magazine, which is choc-full of new articles from some of the world's top astrologers and rising stars.


Tuesday, 13 February 2018

Blind chart readings - could you guess who?

I'm writing this on a cold, crisp, clear, February morning, warmed by a long walk followed by a hot coffee.

A few months ago, the Academy of Astrology UK team challenged each other with blind chart readings. The results are on our YouTube channel and the links are below. Would you have guessed correctly?

Blind Reading 4 - Sue Was Spot On!

In other news, in June I am thrilled to be speaking at the Astrological Association of Great Britain's annual conference. This year is very special, because it's in celebration of 60 years of the Association and the 50th conference. 

Other speakers include Frank C. Clifford, Jane Ridder-PatrickSue Merlyn FarebrotherJohn FrawleyWade CavesRaymond MerrimanLynn BellRoy GillettNick CampionFrances ClynesSharon KnightChristine ChalklinChristian KönigKim FarnellJohn GreenChris MitchellAdrian DuncanWendy StaceySue MartinJenn ZahrtAngela CornishMark JonesRichard SwattonVictor OlliverLiz HathwayRobert AndersonAstrid FallonMeira B. Epstein and Marilena Marino.

Find out more here

Monday, 23 October 2017

Weinstein and the Anaretic Degree

The film industry was rocked by allegations in the New York Times on 5th October 20171 that producer and studio executive Harvey Weinstein had been sexually harassing young women, mostly actresses, for decades. Following the first wave of accusations, on October 8th, he was fired from his own business, The Weinstein Company. He was also subsequently suspended from the British Academy and the American Academy, the organisations responsible for the BAFTA and Oscars awards.

Born with the Sun at 29 degrees Pisces and the North Node at 29 degrees Aquarius / South Node at 29 Leo, he is sensitive to the 29th, anaretic degree. When a planet, natally or by transit, is at that critical degree it’s said to be emphasised, powerful. According to the Café Astrology website2, with a natal planet at 29 degrees, “there can be some real issues with decision-making in that part of the personality represented by the energies of the planet”. It goes on to say that, “it’s also associated with a sense of urgency…it can be a point of poor choices, difficulties, crisis or overcompensation.” So, for Weinstein, with the Sun and Nodes in the anaretic degree, it’s about poor decisions, crisis and overcompensation related to his life mission, purpose and direction. It also perhaps represents the playing out of some intense karma (Nodes) - the release of the need to be ‘king’ of his creative domain (Leo), to be brought back down to the level of the common people (Aquarius).   

By transit, planets at the aneretic degree can bring crisis and on October 8th, when the scandal began to gain traction, transiting Jupiter at 29 degrees Libra triggered his Sun via a partile Quincunx and his Nodes via a partile Trine to the North Node and sextile to the South Node. Transiting Jupiter was also applying to a Trine with his natal Venus at 3 degrees Pisces (Venus in Pisces a fitting symbol for the actresses he’s said to have abused). Appearing before reporters a few days later, Weinstein told them, “we all make mistakes,” (reflecting the issue of poor decision-making associated with the anaretic degree) telling the press that he’d been good to them and asking for a second chance (un-evolved Pisces is prone to inappropriately playing the victim).

The Quincunx is interesting. It’s an awkward aspect between two signs which don’t see eye to eye and often plays out in the context of relationships. Adjustment is required. In this case, the justice and fairness urgently demanded by transiting Jupiter in the last degree of Libra, awkwardly meets his Sun in the last degree of Pisces. The Sun at the very end of the zodiac could mean that poor life choices are made out of a fundamental difference in how he perceives reality, himself and his life purpose, compared to reality as perceived by his multitudinous victims. The Quincunx from transiting Jupiter to his Sun highlights the irreconcilability of these different points of view - he continues to assert that the sexual acts between him and his accusers were consensual. That his Sun is un-aspected (although there may be a Square to the Moon), lends it even more emphasises – he dances to the beat of his own drummer, led by his ego need, perhaps even unaware that his actions were causing so much emotional damage. But he knew he had the power to make or break a young woman’s career and he used it. Natal Mars in Scorpio tightly Squared to Pluto in Leo is a powerful symbol for using sexual predation to satisfy the urge to wield power and control.

Weinstein’s wife, fashion designer Georgina Chapman, announced she was leaving him on October 10th, the day Jupiter ingressed into Scorpio3.

On the 11th October, he was more contrite, saying in a statement to celebrity gossip website Page Six, “I apologise to everyone I have hurt by my actions…I realise I need to work on myself and to change. I am in intense therapy and counselling.” Weinstein is now the subject of a number of police investigations in the US and beyond.

We don’t have a birth time for Weinstein, but transiting Pluto in Capricorn is currently Squaring his natal Mercury-Jupiter Conjunction in Aries.  During Pluto’s transit through Capricorn, the historical crimes and transgressions of powerful people and institutions have surfaced and often these have been ‘open secrets’ or rumours that have circulated for years. Egregious behaviours and actions were tolerated or ignored because the victims felt they had no power, or actually had no power. Under Pluto in Capricorn, however, when a shift change occurred in the collective, these transgressions were finally acknowledged, with the sordid details rising to the surface for all to see and judge, precipitating a crisis.

Collective shift changes are of course reflected in Pluto’s long, slow transits through each sign. In Capricorn it’s been about revelations that endemic within the culture of major institutions there exists a rotten boil that needs to be lanced, with not undeserving scapegoats (Capricorn) as the central focus. First it was banking culture (the early scapegoat being Fred ‘The Shred’ Goodwin, CEO of the Royal Bank of Scotland Group). Next, Plutonian crisis rocked the institution of television, in particular the BBC crisis around the exposure of Jimmy Savile’s prolific child abuse. And now, with these allegations against Harvey Weinstein, it seems that the glamour has fallen away from the movie world, with many saying his actions are just the tip of the iceberg and such behaviour is widespread in the film industry.

There is an Interesting astrological correlation between the timing of the full exposes of Harvey Weinstein and Jimmy Savile's abuses of power through sexual assaults on a huge scale (alleged in the case of Weinstein). The 'open secret' about Savile was finally acknowledged publicly when Saturn was just about to go into Scorpio and with Weinstein it was when Jupiter was just about to go into Scorpio. A few differences - there's been no suggestion that Weinstein abused children and also, unlike Savile, Weinstein is still alive to answer for his crimes. Proving that Jupiter isn't always the planet where you 'get away with it.'

British actress Emma Thompson, when interviewed on the BBC’s Newsnight4 show made the connection, asking, “isn’t it the same story as Jimmy Savile?”

Referring to news stories that Weinstein was checking himself into rehab for sex addiction (addiction can be a negative expression of Pisces, a way for this sensitive sign to avoid painful realities), Thompson went on to say,
 “I don’t think you can describe [Weinstein] as a sex addict.  He’s a predator – that’s different. He’s at the top of, as it were, the ladder, of a system of harassment and belittlement and bullying."

Thompson has outspoken Mercury in Aries Sextile Venus and Square Mars and Saturn (speaking up for/fighting for women against male authority figures). She also has Venus in Gemini (again, speaking up for women) Opposite Jupiter, with both Squaring Pluto to form a T-Square, she concluded, "I didn't know about these things, but they don't surprise me at all, and they're endemic to the system anyway…this isn't about one man's crimes against women. This is about our system's imbalances, our system's gender crisis.”

Under Jupiter in Scorpio there is the potential for this scandal to spread far and wide and of course, Scorpio in its worst expression can be about abuses of power of a sexual nature. Indeed, the #metoo campaign on social media has seen women (and men) in extraordinary numbers, from all walks of life, share, for the first time, their own stories of sexual harassment and abuse.



Tuesday, 10 October 2017

Jupiter in Scorpio: everything looks big under a microscope

Jupiter goes into Scorpio today…here’s a short video introducing some of the major themes: 

Also, check out Rod Chang's excellent new article on Jupiter in Scorpio, discussing the economic, cultural, political and social impact of this ingress against the background of the other current significant transits:

Jupiter will soon move into Scorpio on 10th October. This undoubtedly will unfold a year of Jupiter-in-Scorpio experience, in which our society, culture and politics will focus on Scorpion issues including crisis, fear, darkness, withering, death, transformation, reintegration of resources, reallocation of power, reorganization of affairs, and issues of safety, control and protection, etc. When considering what might come up in this upcoming year, we should never overlook those other planetary placements that happen within the same time-frame. From October 2017 onward, there will be various powerful planetary ingresses and patterns besides this Jupiter ingress – Saturn will enter Capricorn on 20th December 2017, Chiron will move into Aries on 17 April 2018, and more importantly the ingress of Uranus into Taurus on 15th May 2018. All these ingresses symbolise significant changes on economic, cultural, political and social development.

Before the discussion of Jupiter ingress into Scorpio, we must make sure that we understand one thing – the ingress of a single planet or a single aspect often only gives us part of the whole picture. We should take into consideration the placements and aspects of other planetary transits in order to have a clearer vision of the global situation before us. At the moment, we need to pay attention to these following transit aspects: Jupiter-Uranus opposition, Uranus-Neptune semisquare, and Saturn-Chiron square Carry on reading>

With love, Mandi

Sunday, 6 August 2017

New Astrology Course

For any of you interested in taking astrology classes, I'm teaching for an online international astrology school called the Academy of Astrology, which is launching a new comprehensive English-language astrology course.
Astrology forms a large part of our cultural, intellectual, religious and medical history, and studying it is endlessly rewarding.

If you want to get an idea, you can subscribe to our free monthly e-newsletter  at the URL below, as well as read more about our course which begins on Wednesday September 6th
Some special features of our school: 

+ we don't subscribe to a particular astrological 'ideology', so we teach the basics of both modern and traditional forms of Western astrology. With a comprehensive grounding in astrology, students can make their own minds up what to direct their energies towards, already having a head start in most areas!
+ we have special live online supervision groups each term, where progress can be discussed with the tutor and any issues  clarified and untangled. These may be paid for on a term-by-term basis, or are included for no additional cost as part of the yearly fee.
+ Students have the option to specialise in any areas they choose in year 3, with 'stackable' modules in all sorts of astrological specialisms ranging from mundane, to medical, to financial, to astrolocality, to traditional horary astrology and many more! Unlike other schools, once they've covered the basics, students can choose which specialisms they wish to study in greater detail.
+ all classes are streamed live and interactive at a specific time every week, and recordings of each class are available for download for several weeks afterward.
+ our tutors are excellent :)

Take a look at our website, Facebook,  & Twitter pages, and our YouTube channel for free weekly astrology videos:

Twitter: @AstroAcademyUK

Course details:

The course is modular, with 3 modules (terms) per year. The full course takes 3 years, which may be completed consecutively or in your own time: a Foundation year, followed by two years of progressively more advanced teaching, covering more detailed techniques and specialisations. 

Cost: Each semester is £220 + £20 per term for voluntary supervision group participation, or £660 for the whole year, including supervision groups.

The Foundation course this year begins on 6th September 2017 ( 19:30 BST) September.  Enrol here:

Hope you're all getting on well, whatever you're up to! 
Best wishes and here's a taster from our YouTube channel:

Video: Once in a Blue Moon

Blue Moons and Super Moons - what are they and what do they mean? Find out below...