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Chapter 5 - Maps from the Modern Church

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Maps From the Modern Church

We shall leave the more detailed work behind now, and look at broader patterns again.

The First Vatican Council

Returning to Roman Catholicism, what we may call "The Modern Church" could be said to  have begun with the First Vatican Council of 1869 (BC064), for the rulings made during its year of business caused yet another quite considerable schism from the Church of Rome. 150,000 of the hitherto Faithful and their bishops, mainly from Germany, Switzerland and the Netherlands, abandoned Rome to become the Old Catholic Church. They were unable to accept elements of the new constitution, which included the infallibility of the Pope when pronouncing on matters of faith and morals.

With the delegation of divine power a central issue, it is no surprise by now to find Pluto at 16º29' Taurus on December 8th 1869 at the start of Vatican I - nor to discover Chiron only two days from its station in 28º45' Pisces and about to spend the year of the Council crossing the Vernal Equinox and so the tropical and sidereal Dragon's Head of Jesus' Nativity. This was the period of the Franco-Prussian war; the next time Chiron crossed the Equinox, the 1st World War was drawing to its close, and the next time again the war in Vietnam was at its height, African-Americans were on the march for their civil rights in the USA, and when their leader Martin Luther King was murdered, Chiron had just formed the exact conjunction with the Vernal Point, four days before.

Among other meanings, Chiron is perhaps best understood as the Wounded Healer. War of any magnitude - but especially between so-called Christians - will always bring pain to the loving Christ, and the need for his healing grace will be greater than at any other time. During the 2nd World War, Chiron was on his Midheaven, and was there again as I wrote the first draft of this book, with the slaughter worsening daily in the wreckage of former Yugoslavia, Somalia a nightmare, the Sudan starving, Tibet crucified ... the whole world in deepening trouble.

The Second Vatican Council

This historic religious conference was announced in January 1959, and opened on October 11th 1962 (BC065) with 2,540 Bishops and other religious leaders in attendance. The three sessions spanned three years, ending on November 21st 1965. Major liturgical changes were made, including the celebration of the Eucharist contra populum with the priest facing the congregation as Christ's representative rather than facing the altar as leader of the Church's people. This is a significant shift of meaning in the priesthood, upon which depends much of the current argument against the priesting of women. Vatican II also saw a major move toward greater ecumenism in the Roman Catholic Church.
Interesting to see that when the dwad is added to both of the above charts, there is a Saturn/South Node connection; old forms and power structures are up for review and hopeful replacement with gentler, more inclusive patterns of church government and worship.

Over the course of those crucial three years of discussion and decision, Neptune - as co-ruler of Pisces and higher octave of Venus especially connected with the theology, ceremonies, music and relationships in the collective spiritual life - moved from 12º to 19º Scorpio, across the ASC of the Nativity and opposite Jesus' Sun/Jupiter conjunction. The changes have led to much confusion among the older laity, but opened the Roman Church considerably to the rest of the worshipping world.

Pope John Paul II

At 6h17 pm CET on October 16th 1978, white smoke issuing from the Vatican announced that a new Pope had been finally chosen (BC066).

The Sun conjoined the dwad Sun of Jesus.

The 14th degree ofTaurus was rising.

In the dwad an opposition of Jupiter and Pluto conjunct both dwad Angles picks up that day’s Sun-Pluto opposition and separating full Moon; this man is assured of both religious power and massive popular impact.

The new Pope was Karol Wojtyla, born in Wadowice, Poland, on May 18th 1920. I am using his SunMC chart (BC067) for the following reasons: one source says he was born ‘a little after noon’ (and see the author's rectification in Draconic Astrology, Aquarian Press 1987, also The Draconic Chart, Flare 2000). The Pope is also quoted in a religious magazine article as stating that he was born ‘at 5pm.’  So however worthy my early attempts at tweaking his time, we still have uncertainty! However, Venus was at 14º Taurus, the Moon' S.Node at Taurus 15º, Mercury with Ceres - closely associated with the Christian Queen of Heaven - in 18º. Yet again we are hitting the Bull's-eye ... for 14º has become, after nearly 2000 years since the Nativity, the current sidereal degree of Jesus’ great Star, Aldebaran. Reflect on this - it is only in the last third of the double millennium that Christianity has mushroomed into a great world religion, as Aldebaran has progressed from Taurus 11º to 14º, onto the Sun of Jesus. The links between Pope John Paul and his Master are extremely strong, for not only do we find the conjunctions to Jesus’ Sun and Descendant given above, but the Moon - just new on the cusp of Taurus/Gemini - is extremely close to the Taurus Mercury and Gemini Moon of the Nativity. John Paul has always had a special love and reverence for Christ's mother, Mary, and has made his pilgrimage to all her major shrines. Additionally, Mars (conjunct the Sun of the Papacy) is conjoined with Jesus' dwad Sun/IC/sid.Saturn.

Likewise, the chart for the Papacy not only shows 14º Taurus on the Ascendant, but Uranus and Mars setting in 15º and 18º Scorpio. An Aries Moon falls opposite the Mars of Jesus, and in its composite with Jesus comes to Taurus 14º again. When we put the chart of the new Pope with that of his Papacy, we find the composite N.Node in 21º Libra on his own sidereal N.Node (the Nativity's dwad Sun axis) and a triple conjunction within this composite, of Sun, Mercury and Jupiter in Leo. The energy of John Paul working through this Papacy is that of Love-Wisdom, of the Sacred Heart, as well as the sorrow of Love crucified. It is interesting to compare the patterns of this Papacy with those of the Church of England: their Uranus's are conjunct by 2º ... and the composite Uranus is exactly at 14º17' Scorpio! The composite Sun/Mercury in Leo conjoins the Papacy's Jupiter, and it is with Pope John Paul II that most energetic dialogue has been opened up between the two Churches, culminating in the historic visit of this Pope to Canterbury on May 29th 1982, to share a service with the then Archbishop, Robert Runcie. When Pope John Paul’s chart is set for the 18h17 CET time of his announced Papacy (BC067a), dwad Chiron - a symbol of Christ - is close to the Moidheaven ... and the 13th degree of Taurus is ‘rising’ in the dwad with that loving, sacrificial, Christ-centred Venus and South Node.

Men and women of God

There are too many clergy for me to include here; they will have to await either the Revised Edition or a second volume! But having looked through my growing collection it is striking how many who clearly love their Lord Jesus have Sun or Venus on or opposite his Sun ( and I continue to find this in every authentic Christian soul I meet), how many who preach the Suffering Christ or the mystery of the Resurrection share his Scorpio Ascendant (tropical or sidereal), how many who teach his Way have Mercury on these axes ... and where Taurus-Scorpio is empty, the squares from Leo-Aquarius or the MC/IC axis there will be fully alive. The mid-Aquarians can be a problem, even though they are the antiscia of the Taurus degrees, for their very spirit of independence can drive them away from full acceptance of Jesus' example and they may come late into the fold! Leo loves ... but pride can put up its own resistance. As with the clergy and faithful, the inceptional charts of many churches and parishes share the same Fixed Angles as the Jesus they serve in the tropical, sidereal and sometimes the draconic pattern.

Billy Graham is a splendid example of the many mid-Scorpios (BC068); his Sun is at 14º40' Scorpio, his Lord's Mars is conjoined to his own dwad Mars opposite a dwad conjunction of Sun and  Amor (unconditional love) in Aries. The Sidereal (BC069) N.Node is in 19º Scorpio, and the sidereal Sun is of course in 21º Libra on the dwad Sun of Jesus. No wonder this man has evangelised the world with such commitment and fire!

Mother Theresa (BC070) is a woman. So she has her Moon, and sidereal Descendant, conjunct Jesus' own Moon; also her sidereal Sun, conjunct tropical Venus, is at Leo 9º, the place of the Sun on the birthday of Mary, mother of Jesus. How do we know this? Mary herself told the visionaries in Medjugorje, Yugoslavia (now Bosnia) that she was born on August 5th "2000 years ago". This was in the 1980's, after I had had a dream in which I was shown her birthday as August 4th; since then I have been able to do a great deal of work on the nativity of Our Lady, which is fully written up in the forthcoming new edition of “The Draconic Chart.”

Born of David's Line

Before we close this chapter, I must bring to your attention a chart first published in 1978 in Donald Jacobs' book Astrology's Pew in Church. This was also my source (thank you to Tom Bridges!) for the "Moby Dick" Nativity. But in its pages he includes his idea for the nativity of King David ben Jesse, from whom the incarnate Jesus was descended. He explains that Princes and warriors would take as a blazon for their battle-shield the pattern in the skies at their birth in order to impress and intimidate the enemy, and that the Mogen David, the Star of David, would have been his own natal interlaced Grand Trines, a formidable emblem! No enemy could expect victory over a King born with the divine gift of such good fortune! He would appear invincible.

Jacobs committed himself to the heroic task of tracking down his chosen moment, within the period of history encompassing David's life and reign. His hard work was rewarded with one day only when the visible planets formed into that remarkable six-pointed star.
It was, in the Julian Calendar, November 8th, -1061 (ie 1062 BC), and he chose a time when kingly Leo was rising at 0h15m in Bethlehem (BC071). Now, I am working with the chart as you see it, unaltered. The IC and MC are the root and shoot of a chart, the parental cusps, therefore this Meridian is "David's Line". The Tropical chart has Pluto culminating in 12º Taurus opposite both the Galactic Centre and Sidereal Aldebaran in 14º Scorpio. The New Moon of May 6th 5BC crowned this Midheaven. At the Nativity, the Moon passed over the Pluto/MC/GC of the Sidereal chart (with the Sun on Aldebaran.)

King David's Solar Return prior to the Nativity of the promised Messiah (BC072), on October 31st in 6 BC at 14h11m06s GMT, brings him a beautiful Sun/Neptune conjunction in the 7th sextile Mars/Pluto and trine Uranus; Jupiter rises sextile a Gemini Moon and opposite setting Mercury close to the dwad Sun of Jesus' Nativity. On the Midheaven of this Return is its - and of course the King’s - dwad Sun. The spiritually- configured radix Sun rules the 5th house of offspring in this Return. The sidereal Solar Return (BC073) is extraordinary in that it almost exactly replicates David's birthchart, the Sun angular to the IC in the 3rd, the trio of Neptune, Mercury, Sun both tropically and sidereally in this chart picking up the Nativity Axis, and the MC conjoined by the Moon and Mercury at Jesus' birth. Uranus is nearly setting, and the Moon is in the 5th house, sweetly configured with the Outer Planets and square the Nodes. Taken together, I find these patterns very convincing. It has certainly been a worthwhile study, and a necessary inclusion in this book which aspires to present the chart for the Nativity of Jesus in the most comprehensive context available.

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