Ever gone to a large family gathering and gotten stuck sitting at the children’s table? You know: the place where they park all the kids to keep them out of the way of the grown-ups so that actual adult conversations can happen? If you’re a huge fan of children in general, this can be an enjoyable experience — but if you get stuck at that table at every family gathering, it won’t take long for you to get the impression that you’re being left out of all the important stuff… and in fact, you’re likely to miss out on a lot of the most important news.
Still: children are the future, yadda yadda, and it’s best to have at least enough of a passing familiarity with them to make sure none of the little darlings are breaking things or starting a fire. In that spirit, let’s acknowledge the minor aspects and then get back to drinking and talking about sex, as adults do.
There are lots of minor aspects, which all come from dividing the circle into ever-smaller pieces, and the more you divide the circle up after the major aspects, the less effect those new aspects have. For example, the semi-square and the sesquiquadrate (think of them as the “half a square” and “the square and a half”). They have roughly the same effect as a square, but are much less pronounced and less troublesome. Any proper square will have a much more obvious observable effect on your personality, but these two can show up as minor annoyances.
Two of the minor aspects stick out a bit more as far as their importance and usefulness, though: the quintile (one-fifth of a circle, or 72 degrees) and the septile (one-seventh of a circle). The quintile represents a relationship between two planets that takes effort to bring out, but once you do it reveals you have a talent for it. You can also have a bi-quintile (144 degrees of separation) which acts the same way. A quintile is kind of like that guy you know who can write reasonably well, and is always talking about that great novel he wants to write… but he never seems to get any further with it than talking about it.
The septile has a lot to do with fate, destiny, and the deeper meaning of life. This would make them a gold mine of astrological spirituality if it weren’t for the fact that every other aspect out there is a lot louder and more demanding, and the septiles are hard to define in hard-and-fast terms anyway. If you based an entire astrology consultation on septiles, there would be a lot of hand-waving and talk about Karma, but nothing of actual practical use coming out of the meeting. If you see a lot of septiles in someone’s birth chart without a lot of other stuff going on, you may be dealing with someone who would rather chant, pray, and cast a spell to win the lottery than go out and actually get a job in order to make money, for example. Furthermore: the septile is one-seventh of a circle — that is, about 51 degrees 25 minutes 43 seconds. Since 360 degrees doesn’t divide evenly by seven (360 divided by 7 equals 51.428571428571…), this aspect can be pretty maddening for those who enjoy exactness and precision.
Want more astrological minutiae? There are also noviles, vigintiles, quattuorvigintiles, undeciles, semi-deciles, quindeciles, and a horde of other really minor aspects… and more than one astrologer has referred to them all as “The Futiles.” To be honest with you… professional astrologers don’t really need to worry about them much, so you probably shouldn’t either. Just keep them quiet at their own table until their bedtime, and then we’ll get this party started, all right…?
Are some people ‘meant to be single’?
I was going to write you back and ask for your date, time, and place of birth so I can answer this, but then I realized two very important things. First of all, I previously answered a very similar question for someone else. If you’d like to see how we look at an individual birth chart for these things, click here. Secondly: I realize your question is broad enough that it is best answered in general rather than regard to your specific chart. In the spirit of Jupiter in Libra, it’s an answer for both you and everyone.
The short answer to your question is: maybe, sort of. The longer and much more useful answer is going to take some work.
Also: this blog entry is going to be long on philosophy and short on astrology. If all you want is astrology, come back next time. In the meantime, here’s a picture of a cat for you.
First of all: it’s a cliché that there is someone for everyone. Just because it’s a cliché doesn’t necessarily mean that it has to be untrue. If someone passed a law that in the next 60 days that everyone on Earth had to be partnered up with someone, there are enough people in the world that you and I and everyone else would have approximately 2 billion potential partners to choose from. Mathematically that argument holds water, but in practical terms it doesn’t seem very likely, does it?
Secondly: not everyone who is looking to pair up is looking to pair up right now. Some are spoken for but won’t be later, some are taking a break, and some are just a little too damaged from their last relationship to get up on that horse again just yet.
Is physical appearance an issue? Probably not as much as you (and many other people) might think. Yes, our culture tends to wave certain physical standards in front of us that exist only among the very few… and many of those few are largely a product of Photoshop. However, you may have noticed that people tend to find a partner anyway when they’re looking for one, and individual tastes vary widely.
Finally: it’s another cliché that you create your own reality, and thus if you want a romantic partner all you have to do is sit around and visualize it hard enough. I suppose that approach can’t hurt, but there are some obvious flaws with this theory. For example, despite decades of visualization, I am neither a superhero nor a starship captain. So much for The Secret!
Having said all that: I believe that the vast majority of human beings can find a romantic partner if they are open to the idea, are actively searching, and don’t get too hung up on the exact details of what they are looking for in a partner. This isn’t me telling you to lower your standards. I’m just saying that a fair number of people tend to dismiss potential partners based on one factor or another that might prove to be trivial compared to the positives once you get to know that potential partner better. A lot of people who have had bad experiences previously with, say, a left-handed accountant will automatically dismiss the next left-handed accountant who expresses an interest. Remember that the next time you shoot down a date just because he/she has the same Sun Sign as someone else who once turned out to be a jerk, okay?
I suppose what you may be asking here is for my specific perspective as an astrologer. A lot of people avoid astrology because they get the impression it’s fatalistic. I can understand that. People want to be told that they are bright and shiny and wonderful things — and they are, really! — and the world will be theirs if they just do the right things at the right time. There’s a certain amount of truth to that: timing is everything, and understanding the astrology of things can make your efforts much more successful.
On the other hand, your birth chart is your birth chart, and the transits to it are the transits. All the visualizations in the world can’t move the planets to more convenient locations.
I often use the analogy that your birth chart is like the hand you’re dealt in a game of poker. There’s really not much you can do to change it, but if you understand the game and play with skill you can greatly improve your odds of winning. If you decide to rely on luck and don’t really put any thought into what you’re doing, you’re more likely to lose… even if you have a fairly good hand. And ultimately, short of cheating, there’s no way to turn a bad hand into five Aces.
I think astrology is most useful when it helps you understand the hand you’ve been dealt, and where when and how to play it. Despite their sometimes being a lack of evidence, I do tend to believe in Free Will, and I’ve written more about it here.
There you go. Was that a clear-cut and easy to follow answer to your question? Probably not. Sorry about that. Life is complex isn’t it?
(This is part of the “Ask An Astrologer” series, where I occasionally try to demonstrate how getting a consultation can genuinely help and provide real guidance, using real-life examples. Want to find out for yourself? There’s a link to my e-mail at the bottom of this blog entry. Write me… and don’t be afraid to ask for my best rate, either).
“The man I married doesn’t care for me nor the kids. He drinks and smokes and loves to be with his friends, but only ends up fighting with me.”
Is it worth being in this relationship ?
Is there another love in my life ?
Is the new job going to be good for me ?
Let me answer the easy question first — the last one.
Your general career path is determined primarily by the Midheaven. Yours is at 7 degrees Capricorn, and thus is ruled by your Saturn at 23 degrees Aries. That’s where Uranus is now, conjunct your Saturn. Uranus has been in range of that point for a couple of years now, and will be for a couple of years yet. That’s going to bring some unusual circumstances to your career path, so it’s no surprise that you’ve changed jobs. Meanwhile: transiting Jupiter is square your Midheaven now. Squares are often difficult, but Jupiter is a little easier to deal with than most planets are, most of the time. That transit has a couple of months more to go.
So, overall? Yes, things may be more hectic than you’re used to in the next couple of months, but I believe the new job will ultimately be good for you.
Your second question… “Is there another love in my life ?” is almost certainly answered something like this: “Almost certainly… you have a nice Seventh House overall. But are you waiting for that guy to show up before you address the situation with your husband?”
Finally, your first question: “Is it worth being in this relationship?”
That’s pretty much impossible to answer properly within the context of a blog entry. Among other things, it would involve looking at your husband’s chart, his transits, and discussing the details personally. This is why, for the big stuff, I recommend people contact me for a full reading. Even then, I avoid telling people what I think they should do — I’m not a guru. I’m here to offer advice and guidance, not to dictate. May I gently advise you to avoid the advice of any astrologer who uses their position to flat-out tell you what you must do.
Having said that… pretend a friend of yours approached you with “the man I married doesn’t care for me nor the kids. He drinks and smokes and loves to be with his friends, but only ends up fighting with me.”
What would you tell her? And why aren’t you telling yourself the same?
Many people born in the late eighties through the mid-nineties — or as someone my age thinks of them, you kids — have faced some sort of an existential crisis in the last couple of years. That’s because they were born with the Uranus-Neptune conjunction, which in the last few years has been messed with by the Uranus-Pluto Square, and Pluto is still within conjunction range of the natal Uranus-Neptune conjunction in those charts. Since two of the outermost planets are involved, this transit is a long and slow one, grinding away in the background of everything, both good days and bad days. One way of coping with this is to make a spiritual leap of some sort. Spiritual leaps tend to be hard to define and difficult to achieve at will. Fortunately now you can get one from the Mall of America.
“What’s this?” I hear you say. “We’re millennials! Malls are a living symbol of everything that’s wrong with consumerism! We’re not into the whole materialism thing (unless we buy it from a boutique or online or something).” To which I can only respond with: “Calm down there Bernie. Pull up an organic fair-trade coffee and hear me out. You could learn something from the Mall of America, and so could we all.”
For those of you unfamiliar with it, Mall of America (which was “born” — opened, that is — on August 11, 1992 at 10:00 AM in Bloomington, Minnesota, and thus has the Uranus-Neptune conjunction in its birth chart) is the largest shopping mall in the United States. I’ve been there. It’s gigantic. Like, mind-bogglingly gigantic. It has its own wedding chapel, its own counter-terrorism unit, and an aquarium you can walk through. If you spent five minutes in each of its stores, you would be shopping for nearly two days straight. If capitalism was a religion, the Mall of America would be something like St. Peter’s Basilica and Joel Osteen’s enormous Glass Palace of a church and the Temple Mount all in one.
The Mall of America is very, very large.
What spiritual lesson can we possibly learn from this place? Speaking as someone who has actually been there, I would have never thought in a million years that The Mall of America would be making an important spiritual point… except perhaps unintentionally. But today mall management announced that they will be closing on Thanksgiving so that the mall’s thousands of employees can spend the day with their friends and family.
For those of you who are not deeply immersed in American culture, let me explain. In America, Thanksgiving is a holiday where people commemorate how some of the first European settlers in America were helped out by the native population, and both sides came together to celebrate a successful harvest. The settlers were so grateful for the help from their native friends that it was almost fifty years before they began slaughtering them.
As with all major American holidays, Thanksgiving has grown and transmuted and achieved its final form: an excuse for a sale. Thanksgiving has turned into one of America’s biggest annual origins of spending, and the Mall of America taking a pass on that is something like McDonald’s going full vegan for a day: it’s the rare example of a large corporate entity realizing that, although its purpose is to make money, there are some things more important than making money.
Sure, Mall of America is getting some good publicity from this, and that will probably pay off in the long run. But I’m choosing not to be cynical about this. And if you are one of those people who are experiencing transiting Pluto conjunct your Uranus and Neptune, choosing not to be cynical about things is probably the wisest first step you can take.