August Astromusings – Happy Birthday Virgos! Retrograde Mercury, Solar Total Eclipse impacts US & Donald Trump

Demeter & Persephone Illustratated by Sue Robertson


Who knows your secrets
Virgo, pure maiden

whose warm dark womb

protects and nurtures

the germ of wisdom
like a grain of wheat

until it ripens

and is brought to light

Mother principle, worshipped

as Eve, Isis, Demeter, Ceres
and Mary, Mother of Christ

(c) Anne Robertson 1987

Happy Birthday to all the Virgoans who celebrate their birthdays between August 23 and September 23. Virgo rules the sixth house which has dominion over work and health and service to others. It is one of triplicity of Earth signs – along with Capricorn and Taurus. It is one of four mutable signs – the others being Gemini, Sagittarius and Pisces. The ruler of Virgo is Mercury which is also the ruler of Gemini.

The sign Virgo is closely associated with harvests, especially those of wheat and corn. Virgo is the Virgin or maiden who is a source of fecundity, depicted carrying a sheaf of wheat or corn freshly plucked from the harvest; esoterically she represents the Virgin Mary pregnant with the Christ child. The Greeks celebrated Demeter, the goddess of the grain, and her daughter, Persephone, in the Eleusinian mysteries. The Romans worshipped her as Ceres, from where the word cereal is derived. There are also associations with Vesta the goddess who was the keeper of the hearth and protectress of the home and community. Her priestesses were known as the vestal virgins whose duty it was to tend the sacred flame that kept the city safe. There is a common misconception that virgin referred to her being prudish and chaste when it really means ‘one within herself’. The vestal virgins typified the true meaning of Virgo the virgin, leading self-contained, contemplative lives and were held in high regard in the community. The glyph for Virgo symbolises the coils of energy in the Virgin’s essence.


There are also biblical references to the Virgo archetype. In the Old Testament Ruth the Moabite is harvesting the fields of Boaz. In the Egyptian pantheon Isis is said to have dropped the wheat she was carrying across the heavens resulting in the Milky Way. As she travelled she was carrying her Divine Son, Horus in her arms. This image of Isis with her Divine child is a precursor to the Christian story of Mary and Jesus. The Great Sphinx has associations with both Leo and Virgo as, esoterically, it symbolises 0 degrees Virgo or 30 degrees Leo, for it has the body of a Lion and the head of a Maiden. The sphinx demonstrates its potency in that it has learned how to tame the animal passions of Leo through the mental precision and purposeful activity of Virgo.

Virgo Hall of Fame
Being the sign of health, work and service, Virgoans are drawn to careers in health such as medicine, nursing, dentistry, pharmacy, chiropractics, hygiene and nutrition. Their keen analytical mind attracts them to careers in education, psychology, psychiatry, counselling, writing, accounting, business management, and computer sciences. No matter what career they pursue they are always, very industrious, efficient, well organised, thrifty and productive.


Famous writers include the German writer and poet, Goethe, D.H. Lawrence, Roald Dahl, Mary

Agatha Christie

Shelley, the creator of the book, Frankenstein. One Virgoan author whose keen powers of observation and attention to miniscule detail were put to good use in her murder mysteries is Agatha Christie, the creator of Poirot, Miss Marple and volumes of detective stories.

Maria Montessori teaching children

Maria Montessori teaching children

A Virgo who made great contributions to modern education is the Italian woman, Maria Montessori. In 1896 she was the first woman to graduate from medical school in Rome. She began her career teaching hygiene and then moved to the area of education, with the particular goal of providing education for the poor and needy children. Today we see the legacy of her work with Montessori schools established worldwide.

Mother Teresa

Another Virgo whose tireless labours brought her many accolades is Mother Teresa. The austere life that she and her sisters led is typical of the Virgoan nature. Virgoan entertainers include Buddy Holly and Patsy Cline. Virgoan actors include Peter Sellers, Lily Tomlin, Anne Bancroft, Sophia Loren, Claudia Schiffer, Lauren Bacall, Sean Connery, Keanu Reeves, Jeremy Irons and Hugh Grant.

Virgo Health and Anatomy


Virgo rules the sixth house whose domain is work and health. The part of the body allocated to Virgo is the solar plexus and intestines. The solar plexus lies directly behind the stomach, and from it twelve different nerve ganglia branch off in all directions: that is how the solar or sun plexus gets its name. Each of the twelve divisions of the solar plexus allocates with one of the signs of the Zodiac, and hence with a certain part of the body. The plexus itself is a little Zodiac. It is sometimes called the lower brain. The solar plexus is the great receiving station of energy from the back brain, while the bowels complete the chemicalisation of the food products ready to be assimilated by the blood. Being connected by its nerve ganglia with all parts of the body, the solar plexus reflects the condition of the entire body. It is not surprising then, that the stomach and bowels are affected when a person is worried or upset, or when the brain is

fagged and weary. Virgoans are known as the ‘worriers of the Zodiac’ with a nervous stomach, making them prone to digestive problems, especially if they identify too much with their perfectionist or workaholic nature. Virgoans need to be able to switch off from their work and learn to relax. Meditation, yoga or martial arts are ideal pursuits to bring harmony and balance to the lives of these industrious, fastidious folk. In the book, ‘Astrology and Biochemistry’, Vanda Sawtell states the Biochemic cell salt for Virgo is Kali sulph., and its function is to manufacture and distribute oil. When the body is in health, little jets of steam are constantly escaping from the seven million pores of the skin. A deficiency of Kali sulph. molecules causes the oil in the tissues to thicken and clog these safety valves of the human machine, thus turning heat and secretions back upon the inner organs, lungs, pleura, membranes of the nasal passages, and all forms of catarrh.

Kali sulph. is also present in considerable quantities in the scalp and hair. When this salt is lacking we get dandruff or falling hair, skin eruptions secreting yellowish oily matter, or inactive dry scaling skim, gastro-duodenal catarrh, ringworm, anaemia, and bronchitis. It is an oxygen carrier to the epidermic and epithelial cells of the skin and membranes, and in this it works with Ferrum phos., which is the salt for Pisces, the polar opposite to Virgo. Vanda Sawtell extols the virtues of Kali sulph., claiming it is a wonderful salt; the oil which it manufactures provides a fuel, a solvent, a lubricant and purifier for the body, just as in a machine. Furthermore, she adds; In old age the human body is very low in oil, and hence looks dry and shrivelled. Skin, hair, intestinal tract, bones all require their full quota of oil. She alludes to the parable of the wise virgins who kept their lamps burning, and the cry of the foolish virgins, “ We have no oil!” Moreover, people deficient in this salt cannot stand a warm room as they feel suffocated and must get out into the cool air. Symptoms are usually worse in the afternoon. She recommends Kali sulph. be given in all children’s diseases where there has been a rash or scaling. It helps to form new skin, and in this it works with the Gemini salt, Kali mur.

Overview for Virgo for 2017
Venus’s presence in your finance from 14 October to 6 November will support you in your financial dealings. Venus feels comfortable here as it is the ruler of your 2nd house of finances and values.  It not only gives opportunities to enhance your finances and beautify your surroundings but also encourages you to value your financial prowess. Commercial Mercury’s visit to your finance sector from 1-17 October will encourage communications about your finances. Uranus, the planet of sudden change and unpredictability, is still transiting Virgo’s solar 8th house which may bring upheaval in the area of joint finances.

Venus graces your career sector with her presence from 1-31 July bringing harmony. Mercury your ruling planet also pays a visit here from 7-21 June enhancing your communicating and networking skills.

Home & Family
Serious Saturn continues its sojourn through your solar 4th house bringing gravity and responsibility to your domestic sector.  Venus graces your domestic sector from 2-25 December  promoting harmony in your family relationships and giving opportunities to beautify your home. Mercury pays an extended visit in your domestic sector from 6 November 2017 to 11 January 2018 will promote communication and networking with family members.

Creativity & Children
Pluto, the planet of transformation, continues its passage in your solar 5th house which could cause changes and transformation in the areas of children, romance and creativity. Positively, it can be an ideal time for Virgos to reinvent themselves creatively adding energy and drive to this area of your life causing you to be proactive in pursuing your goals re your children, creativity and romance.

Your relationship sector will be activated this year with the continued presence of Neptune, Chiron here. There will be a solar eclipse on 26 February here. Neptune, the planet of spirituality, continues its 14 year passage in your relationship sector teaching you compassion and non-attachment.  Chiron known as the wounded healer is moving through Virgo’s solar 7th house of marriage, relationships and partnerships so there may be opportunities to heal past wounds in this area. The lessons learned from Neptune and Chiron are bitter-sweet but the potential for spiritual growth is manifold.  Other planetary visitors to your love sector are and Mercury and Venus. Quicksilver Mercury pays a visit here from 26 February to 13 March highlighting communications with your partners whether intimate of business associates. Sweet Venus graces your relationship sector with her presence from 4 January to 3 February bringing love and harmony to your relationships. Mars activates your love sector from 20 December 2016 to 28 January 2017 which may cause you to be impatient or restless and more determined to have your needs met.

Both Mercury and Venus pay visits to your friendship sector. Mercury visits here from 22 June to 6 July facilitating communication and networking. Venus graces your friendship sector from 1 – 26 August bringing harmony and conviviality to your social networks.

The karmic north node as well as two eclipses highlight your spirituality sector. The first  is an appulse lunar eclipse on 11 February and the second, a total solar eclipse occurs on 21/22 August.  Mercury and Venus also visit your spirituality sector. Venus’s presence here from 27 August to 20 September will bring harmony to your social networks for Mercury pays two visits here from 7 – 25 July and then again 1 – 10 September facilitating communication on matters spiritual.

Retrograde Mercury
Mercury, the planet of communication and commerce, began its retrograde cycle on 13 August at 11 degrees 38 Virgo and turns direct on 5 September  at 28 Leo 25. This is particularly significant for Virgos as Mercury rules Virgo. We can expect the usual confusion, misunderstandings in communication, missed appointments, strikes and disruption in transport. Positively, it is an ideal time to review issues depending on the position that Mercury falls in your natal chart.

  Total Solar Eclipse 21/22 Aug Impacts the US  and Donald Trump
As I wrote in my previous blog post, the upcoming total solar eclipse on 21 August will trace a path across the central west of the United States bringing issues to a head there. This solar total eclipse is a once in a life time celestial event. The last one like this occurred over the US in 1918 and the one before that occurred in 1869.  Both these previous solar eclipses reconstellate the themes of the current eclipse about racism and white supremacy. The Total Solar Eclipse in Leo on 21/22 August will trace a path across the central west of the United States – Trump’s rust belt base – available for view on NASA Eclipse websitenasa_eclipse_map. The total solar eclipse will also impact the natal chart of President Trump (14 June 1946 10.54 am Queens NY, himself born on an eclipse) with the eclipse in an almost exact conjunction with Trump’s Mars and Leo ascendant while transiting Saturn will conjunct his natal Moon and South Node in Sagittarius. The eclipse falls in the 9th house of the US chart concerning legal matters, foreign affairs, immigration, travel, higher education, philosophy and religion.


 Confederate Statues – Heritage or Symbols of Racism and White Supremacy?
As I began to write this post we can feel the tension building to a crescendo in the US in the week before the solar eclipse. with the upcoming total solar eclipse on 21 August starting from the Pacific Ocean the moon will trace a wide swath of darkness across the US starting from Oregon and ending in South Carolina. As the moon casts its shadow across the US Americans are being confronted with their own shadow – the ugliness of the truth of the ascendancy of white supremacists and their past history of slavery, the American Civil War and racial oppression.  It all began with the ugly demonstrations by the white supremacists, KKK and Neo Nazis who were protesting against


Confederate statue - Robert E Lee

Confederate statues map

Map of location of Confederate Statues

the planned removal of confederate statues by the Charlottesville Council in Virginia which ended in bloodshed and the death of Heather Heyer, a counter protester, when one of these white supremacists ran over anti racist protesters with his car killing her. The white supremacists, fully armed, were chanting hateful slogans – ‘The Jews will not replace us, Blood and Soil, and Heil Trump!” The term “blood and soil” derived from its original German form “Blut und Boden” a Nazi term placing emphasis on maintaining a pure bloodline by marrying and procreating with those of the same ethnic origin and virtues found in country life.

Trump only escalated the situation when he made the most inflammatory statements to date in his presidency saying that some of the Nazi, KKK and white supremacist demonstrators were fine people. The issues which are polarising people originate in their past history of the civil war and slavery where passions spilled over when the Council of Charlottesville decided to remove the statue of the confederate Robert E Lee. This planned action has precipitated more removals of statues some of which have been removed by angry anti racist protesters and others that are being removed by city leaders citing safety fears. Baltimore Council removed four confederate statues in the dead of night and at least nine other cities are planning to follow suit. This action has sparked a backlash with white supremacists claiming that this is tantamount to genocide of white people!

Most of the statues were erected in the 1890s, as Jim Crow laws were being established and in the 1950s during a period of Southern resistance to the civil rights movement. Between 1890 and 1910 confederate states starting with Mississippi passed new constitutions or amendments that disenfranchised most blacks. The term, Jim Crow is often attributed to “Jump Jim Crow” a song and dance performed by a white actor Thomas D Rice. As a result of Rice’s fame “Jim Crow” by 1838 had become a pejorative expression meaning “Negro” The Nazis were inspired by the Jim Crow laws as a possible model for German society.

Trump plays to his base, angry white male supremacists, while alienating Republicans, Charity groups, Corporate leaders, Religious leaders, World leaders etc.
Trump’s moral ambivalence on the violence of these white supremacists has caused a  mounting backlash from many different groups in American society. Trump’s stance on the other hand brought a congratulatory tweet from David Duke, the former grand wizard of the KKK thanking Trump for his courage and honesty. Condemnation for Trump’s stance on white supremacists has brought criticism from prominent Republicans asserting that he lacks stability, competence and the moral authority to be a leader. The prominent corporate leaders resigned from his business advisory councils as did the Arts and Humanities Council. An African American Pastor AR Bernard resigned from Trump’s Evangelical Advisory Board citing his reason as Trump’s vacillation on moral leadership with regard to the Charlottesville violence. Nine charities have cancelled their Fund-Raisers supposed to be held at Trump’s Resort Mar A Lago in Florida over the coming months. Rupert Murdoch’s son, James Murdoch CEO of 21st Century Fox, condemned Trump for his lack of moral leadership over Charlottesville, pledging to donate $1 million to the Anti-Defamation League. The Anti-Defamation League was originally founded in 1913 to defend Jews against Anti-Semitism. It has just announced “Alliance Against Hate,” a new initiative that will work with public and private sectors to combat hate. To begin, the Anti-Defamation League is launching a partnership with more than 200 mayors — in conjunction with the US Conference of Mayors — with the goal of rejecting hate in cities across the country. Under Trump’s presidency Republicans have been emasculated while fascists have been emboldened.


Arnold Schwarzenegger with Trump bobble head doll

Arnold Schwarzenegger, the former Republican Governor of California, lampooned Trump in a skit telling a Trump bobble head doll what he should have said about Charlottesville.

Bro Heyer at her daughter Heather's memorialSusan Bro , the mother of the young woman Heather Heyer, murdered in the Charlottesville riots refused to return Trump’s phone call after watching his speech on TV equating the counter protesters with the alt right thugs. Her advice to Trump was, “Think before you speak.” Not easy for a man with Mars in Leo on the ascendant. Mayor Greg Stanton of Phoenix Arizona is disappointed that Trump has heeded his advice to delay his planned campaign style rally in Phoenix on Tuesday as their nation needs time to heal after the tragic events of Charlottesville. Adding to the tension, Trump appeared to hint that he may pardon former Maricopa County Sheriff Joe Arpaio — a lightning rod for more than a decade in the immigration battle, who was found guilty last month of refusing to follow a judge’s order barring him from racially profiling Latinos.Protests against Trum, KKK & racism


Biwheel 2 Donald Trump & US Total Solar Eclipse 21 Aug 2017

Shambolic White House – “You’re Fired!”
On Friday we saw the resignation or sacking of alt right Stephen Bannon said to be the main strategist behind Trump’s electoral success. He has resumed his role as CEO of the extreme right wing Breitbart News. He is the latest in a string of staffers to leave the White House. Mr. Trump’s first seven months has been plagued by departures, including Anthony Scaramucci and Michael Dubke, both of whom served as communications director; Michael T. Flynn, the president’s first national security adviser; Sean Spicer, the press secretary; and Reince Priebus, who was chief of staff before Mr. Kelly.

Tony SchwartzTony Schwartz, the ghostwriter of Donald Trump’s famous memoir The Art of the Deal doubled down on his prediction that Trump will resign the presidency before the end of the year.”The snowball is beginning to gather momentum as it comes down the mountain,” Tony Schwartz told Anderson Cooper on CNN. “It reminds me a lot of Watergate and the last days of Nixon… He’s put himself in an isolated, no-win position. The level of his destructiveness is staggering.” Schwartz has been an open critic of Trump during his political rise, and telling The New Yorker last year that he “a deep sense of remorse” for his role in Trump’s fame through Art of the Deal. Another commentator claimed that Trump is spiralling down in a vortex of chaos of his own making with a whole staff turnover of his White House in seven months. Trump’s popularity has plummeted even further with a poll showing a 56% disapproval rating in Wisconsin, 55% disapproval rating in Michigan and 54% in Pennsylvania.

Steve Bannon cartoonwhite-house-staff-fired-resigned-1503077248862-master495-v4Trump KKK cartoonSources
Virgo Greeting Card Illustrated by Sue Robertson
Virgo Poem by Anne Robertson
Esoteric Astrology Volume 3 Treatise on the Seven Rays by Alice A. Bailey
Soul-Centred Astrology: A Key to your Expanding Self  by Alan Oken
Alan Oken’s Complete Astrology by Alan Oken
Astrology and Biochemistry by Vanda Sawtell