According to the sidereal zodiac which is the traditional zodiac of Vedic astrology, Jupiter will transit in the constellation of Libra (Tula rashi) beginning on September 11, 2017 and lasting until October 11, 2018, Jupiter transits through one constellation every ~12 years, and the last time it transited through Libra was from September 2005 to October 2006. Additionally, the lunar nodes Rahu and Ketu (true node calculation) are moving into the Cancer-Capricorn axis on September 8, 2017, and this transit will last until March 2019. If we use the mean node calculation, this ingress already occurred in mid-August 2017. Either way, we are in the midst of a sea change. I will start by discussing the Jupiter Libra ingress.
In Vedic astrology, Jupiter is the significator (karaka) of dharma, the principle of cosmic order which points to our greatest path and purpose in life. Known as Guru in Vedic astrology, Jupiter is the head priest and teacher of all the gods. Jupiter as the karaka of akash (ether) represents the concept of divine grace and the principle of expansion. As the symbol of our grandest vision, Jupiter is the planet signifying spiritual protection; wisdom; faith; confidence; and all kinds of progress. Libra, ruled by Venus, symbolizes the arts, theater, and music; the judiciary of a nation; warfare and peace; air travel; windstorms; idealism; peacekeeping; cooperation; justice; harmony; and the need to strike balance, as for example, in interpersonal relationships.
As the sign of the public marketplace, Libra is one of the main astrological indicators of societal systems like commerce; manufacturing (especially clothing and luxury items); politics; and public relations. Jupiter’s nature is to magnify the sign where it transits, so in Libra there is a strong expansion of all things Libra, including a greater thrust toward social civility; business, economic growth, and trade; international diplomacy; peace agreements; and all kinds of alliances. In regard to the latter, when Jupiter transited in Jupiter in the 90s (1/17/93 – 11/22/93), NAFTA (the North American Free Trade Agreement) passed the legislative houses in the U.S., Canada, and Mexico.
In an individual natal or mundane horoscope reading, the house occupied by the sign of Libra must be assessed in order to understand how this important transit will manifest its results, and what kinds of changes are likely to unfold. For a simple example, we can analyze the United States birth chart, without taking into account all the other multiple factors we need to examine when we read a chart. I use the Kelleher version (see below).
Here, Jupiter is the chart lord of the Sagittarius lagna/ascendant chart, and will be transiting in the 11th house in Libra and at the ingress, will also make a fortunate conjunction with the MC/midheaven (bhava madhya) which relates to the government. The four most favorable house placements for Jupiter’s transit are houses 2, 5, 9, and 11. In the 11th house, especially when it is the ruler of the chart as in this case, Jupiter’s transit indicates prosperity, progress, and overall success. Because Jupiter trines the 7th house stellium of planets from the 11th house, there is hope for a new level of understanding, international peace, and diplomatic negotiations with allies and enemies. One hopes that as Jupiter trines the 3rd house Moon in Aquarius, the people of the nation will thrive. With the full aspect to the 5th house, Jupiter suggests positive outcomes of educational reform.
In traditional Vedic astrology, Jupiter has some antipathy toward Venus, meaning that Jupiter considers Venus, the ruler of Libra (and Taurus), to be an enemy. If afflicted in Libra (or Taurus), Jupiter may manifest some adverse results. As an example, Jupiter in Libra (in its lowest manifestation) can point toward falsehood; sanctimony; hypocritical double standards; promising more than can be delivered; and involvement in corrupt or failed personal relationships and legal, financial, or business deals.
By the way, the aversion that Jupiter has for Venus is actually not reciprocated by Venus who is considered to be neutral toward Jupiter, and so, Venus is not considered to be poorly placed in Jupiter’s signs of Sagittarius or Pisces. It’s kind of like having someone with whom you just don’t resonate, but they don’t feel the same toward you and in fact may feel little or no charge. Additionally, in astrology every placement has a lower versus a higher expression, so these kinds of aspects, whether auspicious or inauspicious, will depend on the overall tone of the whole natal horoscope which is a reflection of the soul’s development.
To understand a little more about this enmity between Jupiter and Venus, consider that Jupiter as Deva Guru is the lord of the gods and thus, lord of all that is holy and sacred which we aspire to become. Venus as Shukracharya is the preceptor of the asuras who rule over the material world and our human nature. These two sides, the devas versus asuras, hold the balance of duality in the great lila (divine play) of our world. Jupiter signifying our highest aspirations as lord of the devas can become frustrated with the messiness of the materialistic and sensuous world which Venus oversees as lord of the asuras.
As one of my teachers used to say, when Jupiter is in Libra, it is like a priest or guru “preaching in the wind,” i.e., trying to uplift a disbelieving (and unworthy?) audience. Such “disbelievers,” including con artists, controversial gurus, criminals (and alleged criminals) are often found with afflicted Jupiter in Libra, including Charles Manson; L. Ron Hubbard; Ted Bundy; Erik Menendez; O.J. Simpson, and Bikram Choudhury. Speaking of controversial gurus, get ready for more of them to be exposed during the transit of Jupiter in Libra!
In charts of more developed souls, the conflictual tension of Venus-Jupiter is resolved and we see the beautiful marriage of love and harmony (Venus) with faith and wisdom (Jupiter). This very blueprint is expressed by His Holiness the 14th Dalai Lama (Tenzin Gyatso) whose natal chart has Jupiter in Libra 5th house in a harmonious grand trine with Sun in Gemini and Saturn in Aquarius. He is an extremely popular and beloved personality (the essence of the more evolved Jupiter in Libra soul). The Dalai Lama’s great wisdom teaching (Jupiter/the devas) revolves around the responsibility of cultivating compassion in everyday life (Venus/the asuras/Jupiter in Libra trine Saturn in Aquarius).
Another fascinating example of an evolved soul with Jupiter in Libra is the late Bohemian-Austrian mystical poet and novelist René Karl Wilhelm Johann Josef Maria Rilke —better known as Rainer Maria Rilke (1875-1926). He is described as “one of the most lyrically intense German-language poets” for whom “art” mattered the most in life. Professor Peter Rickman describes Rilke’s spiritual path on the Philosophy Now website: “Rilke’s God [Jupiter] is the spirit of creativity most highly articulated in linguistic creation…life is about creation [Jupiter is our aspiration, and Venus and Libra are all about art and creativity].”
I discovered some possible trends for other years when Jupiter transited Libra the last four times which were:
- 11/11/1969 to 12/11/1970
- 10/27/1981 to 11/25/1982
- 10/12/1993 to 11/11/1994
- 9/27/2005 to 10/27/2006
These dates and events are taken from Wikipedia:
1. De-escalation of conflict/return to stability:
- 10/12/70 – Nixon announces the US will withdraw 40,000 troops from Vietnam before Christmas.
- 11/30/1981 – In Geneva, reps from the U.S. and Soviet Union begin negotiating intermediate-range nuclear weapon reductions in Europe.
- 1/14/94 – President Clinton and Russian President Yeltsin sign the Kremlin accords, which stop the preprogrammed aiming of nuclear missiles toward each country’s targets, and also provide for the dismantling of the nuclear arsenal in Ukraine.
- 3/15/94 – U.S. troops are withdrawn from Somalia.
- 12/23/2005 – U.S. Secretary of Defense Donald Rumsfeld announces the first in an expected series of troop drawdowns in Iraq, following the Iraqi elections.
2. End of economic downturn/return to financial prosperity:
- November 1970 – 1969/1970 recession ends.
- 9/3/82 – Speaker O’Neill and President Reagan settle in one of the most unforgettable deals in the U.S. History, the Tax Equity and Fiscal Responsibility Act, which would cut the ratio of spending from three-to-one and add more taxes.
- November 1982 – The severe early 1980s recession ends sometime this month.
- November 1982 – The unemployment rate peaks at 10.8%.
- 11/3/1982 – The Dow surges 43.41 points, or 4.25%, to close at 1,065.49, its first all-time high in more than 9 years. It last hit a record on January 11, 1973, when the average closed at 1,051.70. The points gain is the biggest ever up to this point.
- December 1993 – The Unemployment Rate falls to 6.5%, the lowest since January 1991.
- December 2005 – The Unemployment Rate falls below 5% for the first time since August 2001; it will remain below 5% until December 2007.
- October 2006 – The Unemployment Rate drops to 4.4%, the lowest since May 2001.
- 10/3/2006 – The Dow gains 56.99 points, or 0.49 percent, with a close of 11,727.34, its first all-time high in more than 6 years after it last hit in a record high of 11,722.98 on January 20,2000.
3. Advances in aerospace/space exploration (as Libra the air sign rules air travel and it is also a creative sign):
- 11/14/69 – NASA launches Apollo 12, 2nd manned mission to moon.
- 12/2/69 – Boeing 747 jumbo jet makes its debut.
- 3/31/70 – NASA’s Explorer 1, first American satellite and Explorer program spacecraft, reenters Earth’s atmosphere after 12 years in orbit.
- 4/11/70 – Apollo 13 is launched toward the Moon.
- 11/12/81 – STS-2: Space Shuttle Columbia lifts off for its second mission.
- 12/2/1993 – STS-61: NASA launches the Space Shuttle Endeavour on a mission to repair an optical flaw in the Hubble Space Telescope.
- 1/15/2006 – NASA’s Stardust mission successfully ends, the first to return dust from a comet.
- 1/19/2006 – NASA launches the New Horizons spacecraft in a 9-year, 3 billion mile space mission, to flyby and observe the dwarf planetary system of Pluto/Charon and possibly other Kuiper belt objects.
- 3/9/2006 – NASA’s Cassini-Huygens spacecraft discovers geysers of a liquid substance shooting from Saturn’s moon Enceladus, signaling a possible presence of water.
- 7/4/2006 – STS-121: Space Shuttle Discovery is launched to the International Space Station. It returns safely on July 17. It is the second “return to flight” mission after the Space Shuttle Columbia disaster.
4. Freak meteorological and seismic events (Libra rules wind storms and Jupiter is an expansive energy):
- 5/11/70 – Lubbock Tornado: An F5 tornado hits downtown Lubbock, Texas, the first to hit a downtown district of a major city since Topeka, Kansas in 1966; 28 are killed.
- 1/11/82-1/17/82 – A brutal cold snap sends temperatures to all-time record lows in dozens of cities throughout the Midwestern U.S. (caused by unusual air element patterns).
- 1/17/82 – Cold Sunday sweeps over the northern U.S.
- 4/6/82 – A blizzard storm unprecedented in size for April dumps 1-2 feet of snow on the northeastern U.S.
- 1/17/94 – The 6.5-6.7 magnitude Northridge earthquake shakes the Greater LA Area, leaving 57 dead and more than 8,700 injured. In this case, Jupiter was in Swati nakshatra ruled by Rahu which is an indicator of “eruptions” and of course Libra being a sign of “balance” is also a sign of “imbalance” (as in the tectonics) when it is afflicted as it was here.
- 1/19/94 – Record cold temperatures hit the eastern U.S. The coldest temperature ever measured in Indiana state history is recorded in New Whiteland, Indiana.
- 3/27/94 – The biggest tornado outbreak in 1994 occurs in the southeastern U.S., one tornado hits Goshen United Methodist Church in Piedmont, Alabama, killing 22 people.
- 6/30/94 – 7/10/94 – Tropical Storm Alberto causes very damaging floods, intense winds, and extensive problems directly over the SE U.S. and the Caribbean Islands; 32 directly killed by the storm, and property damage is assessed at $1 billion.
- 1/2/2006 – The annual Rose Parade in CA is drenched in heavy rain for the first time in 51 years.
- 10/12/2006 – Lake Storm Aphid: A freak snowstorm blows into Buffalo, New York leaving over 400,000 without power and killing thirteen.
Jupiter will be in opposition (full aspect) with Uranus at the Libra ingress. This will color the entire transit of Jupiter in Libra but especially during the first few weeks of the transit. The exact opposition will occur on September 28, 2017. This opposition also occurred in the spring of 2017 and the fall of 2016. Before this, it had not occurred since 2004. Because Uranus is in early Aries, this aspect can often point to a riot or rebellion, or just something quite surprising (perhaps related to a religious figure, something to do with international diplomacy, a court decision, or some trade negotiation). It reflects a restless or agitating energy and some release of intense pressures.
The lunar nodes Rahu and Ketu also changed signs in mid-August, according to mean node calculations. Using the more precise and modern true node calculation, they change signs on September 8, 2017 (Eastern Time) when Rahu and Ketu move from Leo-Aquarius to Cancer-Capricorn. They will now transit here in this section of the sky until March 2019 (using both mean and true calculations these dates in March are slightly varied). The last time they were in the Cancer-Capricorn axis was from December 1998 until August 2000, so you can look back to what was happening in your life then to see if there was an important theme.
One of the indicators of floods happening around the August 2017 eclipse is that Rahu and Ketu were sandhi (on edge) and that Rahu which rules winds was in the gandanta (drowning) section of watery Ashlesha nakshatra (indicating very treacherous storms and floods), whereas Ketu is in Capricorn (again using mean nodes, this moved into place in mid-August) and Ketu in Capricorn is associated with destruction of property and trees. The heat and fires in the western part of the U.S. are also indicated by Ketu in Capricorn and the Leo eclipse as well.
In general, Ketu in Capricorn and Rahu in Cancer suggest a time when we are more than ever focused on safety and security issues. At the deepest level, this is a challenge of course as the world is constantly changing, so the evolutionary lesson of Rahu in Cancer is to live in alignment with the only true refuge which is the Self/divinity within. In mundane astrology, the Cancer-Capricorn axis highlights issues of patriotism and nationalism; fisheries and the fishing industry; land and construction; agriculture and food production; charitable organizations; immigration and international border issues; municipal versus national government conflicts; railroads; mining; and big business.
The U.S. (Kelleher chart) is in the Rahu Mahadasha, so tracking the transits of Rahu for this chart is doubly important. (Please see my previous blog about the U.S. Kelleher chart’s Rahu Mahadasha.) Rahu occupies the 8th house/Cancer, and Ketu the 2nd house/Capricorn both natally and also now in transit. They will transit back to their exact natal positions in the spring of 2018, which is called the Nodal Return, which marks a “date with destiny,” when an old karmic cycle ends and a new one begins. The cycle that is changing will relate to the 2nd and 8th houses and signs of Cancer-Capricorn. The 8th house according to mundane astrology emphasizes economic matters, trading and stocks, national finances, natural disasters, culture wars, and medical discoveries; the 2nd house emphasizes the financial condition of the nation (revenue, prosperity, currencies), banks and national treasury, GNP, and taxation as well as First Amendment issues (free speech etc).
While Jupiter transits in Libra, it will be in a T-square with the lunar nodes in Cancer-Capricorn, which is a rajasic combination indicating a passionate, progressive, hyper-driven, creative, inventive, action-packed, and crisis-oriented cycle. Another time in history that we experienced this three-part aspect combination was in the fall of 1981 which marked the beginning of the fitness craze. It happened also in 1851 which was the time of the Gold Rush and also an agricultural revolution. In 1887 it also occurred during the time of the last Indian wars in America, and also when the first celluloid photographic film was invented.
Jupiter in Libra and Rahu in Cancer are both associated with the water element and floods, and one of the worst floods in the world’s recorded history did in fact occur when we had this T-square with Jupiter in Libra and Rahu-Ketu in Cancer-Capricorn. This was the Chinese Yellow River (Huang He) Flood which began on September 28, 1887, and killed 900,000 people, one of the deadliest disasters ever recorded. I pray that such an event never happens again on our beautiful planet.
Lokah Samastah Sukhino Bhavantu: May all beings everywhere be happy and free, and may the thoughts, words, and actions of my own life contribute in some way to that happiness and to that freedom for all.