Chapter 1 - The Prince of Peace
The Prince of Peace
Notes to the reader:
1. All charts in this book are presented as high-quality PDFs. To view any chart, make sure you have Adobe Reader installed and simply click on the chart's red, underlined reference number in the text.
2. There are many references to asteroids in the text, but it isn't possible to display them in the charts. If you have a comprehensive asteroid database and a program such as Solar Fire which can calculate these, you can easily display and print out their positions. There is one example of a Solar Fire asteroid table in chapter 4.
The Birth of Jesus
As all avenues of establishment and fringe enquiry have so far borne little fruit, it seemed a good idea to take a radically different approach to the question of the birth-moment for such an awesome figure. Accepting that the man Jesus was the earthly vehicle for that emanation of the Godhead which we call the Christ, and assuming that this exalted being must come into the world free of human karma and with no conflicts between his persona and his spiritual nature, it follows that such perfection requires a perfect moment for its earthly incarnation - a moment that is historically unrepeatable. When might such a moment be? The answer lies not in the search for planetary patterns, nor in exploding stars. We only have to look to the Zodiacs for our answer.
At 16h23m07s GMT (18h43m55s LMT/ 18h50m37s LAT) on May 7th, 5BC (Astronomical Year for computing, -0004) in Bethlehem, Israel, the Sun was setting conjunct Jupiter in the middle of Taurus "between the Ox and the Ass", just as the Moon's True N. Node reached 0º00'00"Aries **, precisely aligning the Tropical and Draconic zodiacs for the first time since two other crucial events occurred - the similar alignment of the Tropical zodiac with the Sidereal, and then the symbolically important conjunctions of Saturn and Jupiter in Pisces. BC001. The Persian Magi, watching the heavens for signs of the Christ-Child's coming, would first observe the triple conjunction and know that the prophesied time was coming near. "Following his star" they would then have waited for two more signs before they set off on their momentous journey - the Spring Equinox Sun rising in the Dragon's Head (ie eclipses occurring close to the Equinox) and then the heliacal rising of Jupiter after a New Moon conjunct the royal star Aldebaran, "the Watcher of the East". BC002. Perhaps this is what was meant by "they have seen his star in the East"?... In any case, with Aldebaran in Taurus 11º54', the astrologers would have observed its heliacal rising in the East, after the crucial New Moon, as they arrived in Jerusalem, knowing from this that their calculations had brought them to Bethlehem in good time to pay their homage to the child born "under" that royal star before the family left to return home. There could well have been the gift of a lamb by the local shepherds; certainly the flocks would have been back in the hills, and that season's lambs would still have been quite small. What about the gifts of the "three kings"? This story may not refer to the Magi, but in fact to the three great symbols of kingship gathered on the horizon - the Sun, Jupiter, and the Royal Star itself - expressed agin in the symbolism of Gold, Frankincense and Myrrh.
At this moment the alignment of the three zodiacs was exact between the first two, and extremely close between these and the Sidereal - whichever of the main contenders for this zodiac you choose. The DeLuce is almost exactly aligned, with the Synetic vernal Point at only 0º03'01" Aries; the general favourite (and mine, after long and rigorous testing), the Fagan-Bradley, is only off by 3º07'09". The significance of this triple alignment, intimated above, is that the characteristics of the (Tropical) bodily personality, dependent as it is on that body's metabolic needs and drives, are in total unison with those of the (Draconic) incarnating soul, and almost identical with the (Sidereal) "historic" self that identifies not with its bodily desires, nor with any accompanying karmic drives, but with its duty to the rest of humanity, as far as opportunity affords. The differences that do arise between the Sidereal and the other two zodiacs, allowing planetary cross-contacts from one to the other, bring those other drives and energies into this wider Sidereal scheme.
(** - This precise nodal position was originally calculated using the original Matrix ‘BlueStar' program, whose accuracy was held in high esteem. The Solar Fire chart shown above gives the N.Node at 29Pi58; this is the current calculation by the Swiss Ephemeris, on a day when the Nodes were moving very fast and their 0º00'00" Aries position had occurred only around 6 hours earlier. On the basis of all the work done with the sunset chart, I have not found, nor been given any reason to change it. PAFC.)
A Star for Bethlehem
What is more, when the heliocentric positions of the Gospel asteroids (plucked from that ever-expanding cosmic encyclopaedia) are plotted for this day***, they fall in clusters around the points of the Cross and Star, telling the great story that is about to unfold below:
Conjunct the dominant Venus, at 7º Cancer is Yeshuhua, probably the nearest we will get to Jesus’ Jewish name. Close by is the ‘phrase’ Josefa, Abbe (Joseph, father) at Cancer 11º and 12º. Eucharis (the Holy Communion) is also nearbyat Cancer 2º. Opposite this group and clustered around Mercury in Capricorn are Adams at 4º(Jesus is often referred to as the second Adam), Virtus (goodness), Paradise and his chief disciple Peter all at 5º, Seraphina (the announcing angel) at 7º, and mankind’s healing and salvation in Salvia at 11º. The ‘rising’ Mars adds to the description of Jesus’ incarnation as a Jewish carpenter/builder and spiritual master: with it at Libra 2º, 3º and 5º areJudith, Baumann and LeMaitre. ‘God with us’ - Emanuela- is written against Saturn ‘setting’ in Aries at 4º, with wisdom and the love of God - Sophia and Theodora - plus another key disciple, Andree(w) at Aries 11º and 8º. Interesting that in their confrontation both Mars and Saturn are out of dignity, Mars having to lay aside its sword in the cause of Libran peace, Saturn’s privacyand control compromised as it is thrust onto the front line of a spiritual war.
So there is the Grand Cross; on the points of the Star we also find the humble initiate, Mary, with the waiting Earth/Pluto as a lovely phrase in Virgo 11º and 13º - Modestia, Magion, Maria. The other soul closest to Jesus was John, his mission the Truth, and crucial to his destiny was Rome; so with Uranus opposite among his Fishes are Johanna, Veritas and Roma at 4º, 7º and 13º. Finallyin Scorpio 3º with Neptune are Celestia and Ra-Shalom (both the peace of God and Jerusalem itself) balanced by Jupiter’s cluster of Isis (the mother of God) and Aeternitas, Viv (eternal life) at Taurus 12º, 9º and 2º.
Earlier there was a reference to eclipses occurring close to the Equinox - Jesus’ prenatal Solar eclipse occurred in fact on March 8th at 15º Pisces opposite Pluto, just six days after the Helio Star, at 07h04 am LMT. BC004. At that moment in Bethlehem the 0ºAries Dragon’s Head was exactly conjunct asteroids Mary and Carpenter on the Ascendant (29º47' Pisces) opposite Modestia and Amun (God). About to set in 4º and 5º Libra near the sacrificial Dragon’s Tail was the phrase Maria, Virginia, Charis - Mary the Virgin, full of Grace, and the same phrase, sun-centred, conjoins the Earth and Pluto; if you recall the words of the Rosary, they are “Hail, Mary, full of Grace; the Lord is with thee”, and indeed Emanuela (the Lord with us) exactly aligns with this from Helio 5ºAries.The painful Mars/Saturn theme is repeated in this map; at Aries 6º is Saturn’s heavy burden, opposite Helio Mars at Libra 7º in a cluster with LeMaitre, Judith and Baumann. Also in the Helio chart, close to geocentric Mary, ‘Beate Regina Amor’ rises - the blest Queen of Love - aligned with geo Osiris, the broken God. Jesus’ destiny on the cross is foreshadowed at 3º Aries by Atropos (death) and Wood between Saturn and the Dragon’s Head. At the root of this amazing chart around the 29º Gemini IC we find Noel, Yeshuhua, Horus, Abbe, Josefa - all between 26º Gemini and 3º Cancer - announcing the nativity of Jesus, son of God, whose earthly father was Joseph. (Remember he was known in Galilee as Yeshuah bar Joseph.) The Midheaven, its culmination, is at the mid-point of helio Paradise/Peter at 6º Capricorn and geo Paula at 24º Sagittarius; upon both of these martyred saints Jesus built his Church.
A fortnight later on March 23rd at 20h52 LMT the Moon was eclipsed in her South Node at 1 Libra. BC005. At Bethlehem the exact conjunction of Mars and Neptune - e. square MC - was rising opposite a setting Jupiter/Ceres in 3 Taurus. The Sun at 1 Aries was in the North Node close to Mercury and Saturn. On its own, this chart heralds a leader set on a hard path toward high spiritual ideals. Add the dwad to this eclipse BC006 and the end of that path, the climax of that life, is painfully foreshadowed - the cross of its angles is the very cardinal cross of the Crucifixion to come in 33AD, and the dwad eclipse falls in almost precisely the same positions of Aries-Libra as the Sun and Moon that first Easter. Even Saturn and Jupiter are approaching their Crucifixion positions in Cancer and Gemini.
Unknown even to the Magi, that Solar star and these Spring eclipses spelled out to the world, in heaven’s own language, the whole Gospel story from beginning to end.
Son of Man, Son of God
What kind of nature, then, does this uniquely unified being bring into incarnation at this moment in history? For even statistically, someone somewhere was very likely to be coming into the world at the time.
The planetary pattern is amazing, and gives the lie to all protestations that "undiscovered" planets are invalid in nativities pre-dating their first observation. The Sun, the focus of identity at every level, is conjunct Jupiter, royal Aldebaran (the "eye of the bull") and the Descendant in Taurus, opposite the other royal star Antares on the Ascendant and the 12th-house Neptune, sextile Uranus in the 4th and beautifully trine Pluto in the 10th. It also semi-sextiles Saturn in 5th. Also in the 5th house are the conjoined Equinox, Dragon's Head and S.V.P. So immediately we have a figure of tremendous power, sensitivity, originality and spiritual charisma, graced with self-discipline and authority, full of common-sense, generosity, wisdom and humour. Now that we have an accurate position for Ceres, the harvest imagery of so many parables is understood - she is closely conjunct his Taurus Mercury! Jesus’ heart goes out to everyone he meets; his path is one of loving and giving on a global scale. The Fagan-Allen Sidereal brings that wonderful Sun/Jupiter right onto to the Tropical/Draconic 7th cusp to emphasise the importance of one-to-one sharing in this man's principal work. BC007. His star, Aldebaran in Taurus, grants him the titles of King of Kings, Prince of Peace.
Yet the same Taurus Sun also describes the man Joseph who was earthly father to him, for this man was a carpenter - and in those times if a man worked in wood to build homes and furnishings, he also worked in stone as a mason, a builder. ( I learned this on our pilgrimage to the Holy Land at Easter in 1994.) This was the trade Jesus himself was to follow until the start of his ministry; the Taurean was to be known as the Carpenter - the Builder - of Nazareth.
The Moon in 0º Gemini, still conjunct the Taurus Mercury, describes a young and intelligent mother - but she is semi-square the 5th-house Saturn, though sextile the triple Node, and quincunx a 12th-house Mars... this man can only bring pain to his mother and to any woman in his life, for Venus in Gemini in the 8th also configures the 12th in her sesqui-square to Neptune, and the hidden enemies mean ultimate torture (Sidereal Mars Scorpio) and death. Scorpio rising is strong and silent under stress, whatever the nature it hides. This is a being who came to love universally, and to suffer in silence. Here is a perfect spirit in an imperfect world.
This is borne out by the impressive Heliocentric chart, BC008, where the nativity's Mystic Rectangle is even more perfectly formed than in the Geocentric. It shows Mars no longer in conflict but united with Earth in Scorpio in the configuration of Neptune sextile Pluto and trine Uranus - the spiritual body and blood of the Lord's Supper. Mercury, semi-square Pluto at the time of the previous day's lovely New Moon, has moved to conjoin Neptune and Mars showing us the profound, spiritual, forceful and compassionate mind behind the friendly voice and plain words. This is indeed a perfected man, a son of man who is Son of God; who is entitled to say from Scorpio "I am the Resurrection and the Life", and from the triple zodiacal convergence, "I am the Way, the Truth and the Life - no man cometh unto the Father but by me", and from the beauty of his pattern, and from the life he lived through it, "Be thou perfect, even as Thy Father in Heaven is perfect."
Finally, the Geocentric Dwad positions BC009 put the Ascendant into Taurus conjunct Sun/Jupiter/DESC, completing the identification of self with neighbour; Venus goes onto the IC - he is rooted and grounded in love. Mercury and Neptune conjoin in the Dwad opposite Uranus from Aquarius, bringing to the picture a visionary teacher; Mars and Saturn conjoin with radix Pluto, doing battle with evil and the temptations of power; the Descendant moves to Neptune, drawing to him followers among the fishermen and the "publicans and sinners." And the Dwad Sun is conjunct Dwad IC in Libra with radix Mars, graphically depicting the end of his selfless life abandoned and in agony. Sidereal Dwad Saturn joins this group; here is "the man of sorrows, acquainted with grief."
That womanhood has a relatively low profile here, and is subject to some limitations, may disturb some of you. But this is still in accord with the received wisdom, now very much out of fashion and "politically incorrect", that woman is somehow less than man. But think about it for a minute - the distress that is present in this pattern comes precisely from the capacity to feel, to respond at a purely human, emotional level, which is after all a woman's special gift. He, being whole, would have this gift, and therefore experience (and cause) emotional pain while living a life in the body. Woman is only "less" than man because the Earth and Moon are only satellites of the Sun, because body and even soul are necessarily "satellites" of the true spiritual Self in every being, male or female. In the Gospel of Thomas, Jesus says, "Except a woman become like a man, she cannot enter the Kingdom." What are we astrologers teaching, after all, but this very truth - that individuation, true fulfilment in the search for identity, lies in the reunion of male and female in the psyche; and especially that a woman, who will tend naturally to find her identity through Moon and Venus, has to become her own Sun, her own man, in order to experience her fullest spiritual life. That relatively few women of Jesus' day would have had our opportunities to desire, to approach and to achieve that fullness of life may be one reason why he chose twelve men as his closest companions - quite apart from the symbolic significance of the twelve Sun-signs encompassing their Sun/the Son, which is unlikely to be accidental.
Whether or not you are persuaded to believe that the man Jesus was born at this place and time, and exercised that world-changing ministry, two things are true: one, that something happened to catalyse the extraordinary spread of Christianity, and two, that there was a moment in celestial history that had the power to set an ideal pattern for human growth, a pattern far more important than the little solstices and equinoxes we study to gauge our historic progress over the coming months! Even on these terms, then, the skies of May 7th 5BC repay our study - but to some of us they will forever speak of the coming of Christ.