Athena's Web Weekly Column

Week of May 13th - May 19th, 2005

Brother against Brother

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      The soul of the United States of America was cast on the 4th of July, 1776 in Philadelphia, PA. By signing the Declaration of Independence, we severed our ties with the Mother Country, and set out on our own. Rectified by Larry Ely of Amherst, MA, the birth time is 4:47:22 PM, local time.

      There are many indicators for the bounty and promise this nation would hold in this chart, as the Sun in Cancer (a sign ruling land, home, and country) was complemented by a Venus Jupiter conjunction in the early degrees, with Mercury bringing up the rear in the late degrees of the sign of the Crab. Agriculture, food, and produce were all promised in abundance with this combination (Venus Jupiter), Civil War Charge

while the capacity to successfully market these commodities, both within the country and abroad was underscored by Mercury's role as Lord of the Merchant. Because each of these planets are in Cancer, they are collectively ruled by the Moon in Aquarius, indicating our independent birth, the land of the free, and the melting pot of nationalities which we would become. With Sagittarius Rising, we have had an expansionistic world view, growing from sea to shining sea, but also historically attempting to take over not only Canada, but also in various attempts to move into Central and South American and the Caribbean. These are some of the central themes of the Sun, Moon and Ascendant in this chart. By watching the secondary progressions unfold in this map, we can watch history in action. As the progressed Sun aligned with the US Mercury in our nations infancy, there was intense debate among the states about the adoption of the Constitution over the Articles of Confederation. On the day the alignment was exact, Delaware became the first state in the country to vote it into place, and the wheels were set in motion towards ratification.

Fort Sumter       Although many reasons contributed to the start of the Civil War, the progressed celestial indicators seems to boil it down to two which really triggered the conflagration. The first inflamed public passion and sentiment as the progressed Full Moon occurred on April 9th, 1861. The opposition between the Sun and Moon indicates tension between two established ways of doing things. In other words, how you feel about it is given full scope. Between December 1860 and February 1861, the states of the South succeeded. Three days after the Full Moon, on April 12th, 1861, Fort Sumter was fired upon and the war had begun.

While this Full Moon is what inflamed the passions of both sides, it was another combination which set the stage and defines its true character. Progressed Mercury squared the progressed Pluto on July 4th, 1860, and then squared natal Pluto on August 30th, 1861. Ultimately, it was control of the nation's economy which was at stake, of whether it would be the industrialized north or the landed aristocracy of the agricultural south which would define the future of the opening west and our trade policies overseas. Tariffs which protected the northern industry hurt the South. A good portion of Southern monies were being voted by Congress to subsidize northern development. Since Mercury is the planet which rules siblings (Gemini), this indeed erupted in a war of brother against brother.

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