Sunday, January 31, 2016

360 SHADES of NOIR - An Astrological Crime Primer

Greetings, Astro-Tarology readers...

During Mercury Rx, my blog wasn't letting me post anything (have since discovered using a different server works). Probably for the best, as I'd intended to post a piece about the late, great David Bowie, but find I am still feeling too overwhelmed by the effects of his life and death, so going to let that one sit, for now.

The topic of astro signs and crime came up, recently, on a Facebook thread, so am instead taking that as a cue to post this darkish piece, written back in December (originally entitled, 'Krampus' Guide to Crime in the Zodiac'). I'm a Mercury Rx child - we like our humour a bit charred - and Mercury is conjunct Pluto in Capricorn, presently. Moon is in Scorpio, too, so yes, a fine time for crime. Here's Part 1: The Signs.
(Part 2 was to be about the planets, but I haven't written it yet). Enjoy !

An Astrological Crime Primer

Part One - The Signs

According to the internet, the FBI has compiled the zodiac signs of criminals and come up with some not very surprising results - Aries are armed and dangerous, Geminis commit fraud, etc... just cliché enough to make it suspect. Cancers, supposedly, top their incarceration list, followed by Taurus and Sagittarius, although a for-real statistical analysis in Chatham-Kent (2011) showed Aries to be the most convicted and Sagittarius least. Libra is up there, in both cases. That makes a bit more sense, but still, it was only one year.

Statistics based on Sun sign alone are rather pointless. It's nearly impossible to tell, just from viewing a chart, whether a person will have criminal tendencies. A Mars/Pluto type might just as easily make a heavy duty PI as a mafia hit man. Mercurial types might act out the split personality on screen (Gemini triplets Lee, Price, Cushing and Virgo 'Psycho',
Anthony Perkins ), rather than on the street.
Nevertheless, I thought it a subject worth musing on. I'm a big detective/mystery fan, and consider astrology itself to be a form of sleuthing. The first clue we have to the nature of what drives each sign can be found in their 'key phrases' (included in brackets, throughout). 

Every sign has it's shadow potential, but Sun alone does not a character make. Other planets in these signs may have the dominant influence and aspects between planets are the main factor. Peter Sutcliffe, the notorious 'Yorkshire Ripper', was a Gemini, which might explain his double personality, but conflicting Saturn and Moon at the exact same degree of CANCER (key phrase: I FEEL), plus Lilith in Scorpio might be more indicative of his triggers and motivation. Jian Gomeshi, serial date abuser, is also a Gemini with afflicted Cancer Moon. It was hard for many to accept that this baby-faced, Canadian boy could be a misogynist monster, behind closed doors.

I mean, if having a split personality was bad, think of how many times a month the inconstant Moon changes house. Imbalanced Moon men and maidens are, at best, emotional loonies who tend to just snap - at worst, unstable, passion killers and werewolves. Like it's close relation, Scorpio, lunatic Cancer is hell bent on revenge, in this lifetime or the next and is the sign most likely to leave a signature - intentionally or not - which might explain the high number of apprehended Cancers. Sutcliffe often left a boot print, tire mark or bite mark on the victim's breast, in accordance with his Moon and Lunar sign of Fire Dog. One wonders whether he struck when the Moon was full. The Moon affects hormones (not just the sex sort) and hatches parasite eggs, after all. Perhaps the Cancer criminal secretly yearns for the cozy security of a jail cell.
Cancer Sun: OJ Simpson, Lizzie Borden, George W Bush, Donald Rumsfeld, Genene Jones (serial killer pediatric nurse), Mike Tyson
Cancer Moon: Peter Sutcliffe, Jian Gomeshi, Jesse James

Serial killers or offenders, according to the list, are most often born under a mutable sign - obviously these natives find it easiest to live a double life. Mercury rules two of them (Virgo and Gemini), and he's a master of confusion. They say delinquent GEMINI (key phrase: I THINK) is the nicest and least likely to commit a serious crime, preferring the petty sort - theft or fraud, natch. On second thought, Gemini is probably just the least likely to get caught. The quicksilver-tongued trickster is always scheming and can sweet-talk a person into signing away their savings or changing a will. 'In like Flynn'. That adorable stranger (Brad Pitt), in Thelma and Louise who has fun sex with Thelma, then makes off with their money, almost certainly had Gemini genes (or Pisces). One twin might be nice, but if afflicted, there can be a split personality, a la Jekyll and Hyde, or worse, possession - this airy air sign can be un-grounded and attract invisible 'friends'. Gemini Moons are not to be trusted !
Gemini Sun: Peter Sutcliffe, Jeffrey Dahmer, Gian Gomeshi, Donald Trump, Muammar al-Gaddafi, David Berkowitz ("Son of Sam")
Gemini Moon: Francisco Franco, Jean-Claude Romand (French murderer and imposter), September 11 attacks.

"After all is said and done
 I did alright, I had my fun
 I will walk before they make me run."

 - Before They Make Me Run, Keith Richards/Rolling Stones

The outlaw SAGITTARIUS (key phrase: I SEE or I SEEK), it has been told, is hardest to catch. An incorrigible non-conformist and gambler at heart, this sign doth bestow a love of risky business, high stakes, the sport and speculation of being on the lam or the fringes. As with cousin Pisces, Jupiter (now Pisces' co-ruler, with Neptune) encourages the expansion of his offspring's universe, by any means necessary, not excluding hard drugs. Lucky and optimistic Sagi believes it can get away with things repeatedly, and often does. Like opposite sign, Gemini, Sagittarius is a supreme con artist who firmly believes their own horse shit. Normally, they will avoid physically hurting others, unless absolutely necessary, but suppressed tempers can get the better of them and they do have warrior blood. Bad centaurs are always at the ready to skip town, should a whiff of the law be in the air. Possible commemorative tattooing ("I got this one after stealing my first car").
Sagittarius Sun: Lucky Luciano (founder of American Mafia), Ted Bundy, Charles 'Tex' Watson, Billy the Kid, Pablo Escobar, Joseph Stalin, Edmond Kemper (the Co-Ed Killer), Theirry Paulin ("Beast of Montmartre"), General Custer
Sagittarius Moon: Ted Bundy, Lucky Luciano, General Custer

When the good VIRGO (key phrase: I ANALYZE) goes wrong, this sign is rumoured to be meticulous in planning out crimes, likely knowing the best ways to remove blood stains, scents and traces and how to make explosives from household cleaning products. Virgo is also a sexual pervert. Suspect one if you can't find any DNA, let alone a fingerprint or hair. Mercury also gives this sign the thieving gene, though less overtly than Gemini, who considers it an art. Virgo makes hackers and burglars, the type who can pick locks with a bobby pin, you get the picture. Price tag switchers, pet-nappers and home-made concocters, twisted sister Virgo or Virgo Moon (the witches' Moon) might make use of poison herbals or substances, like that creepy, serial widow, next door, with the castor bean plant growing in her front yard.
Virgo Sun: Paul Bernardo, Michael Jackson, Albert DeSalvo (the 'Boston Strangler'), Edward Gein
Virgo Moon: Ted Kaczynski (the 'Unibomber'), Marquis de Sade, Lance Armstrong, Bill Cosby, Eva Braun

"You could have it all
 My empire of dirt
 I will let you down
 I will make you hurt"
  - Hurt, by Michael Trent Reznor/Nine Inch Nails,
    immortalized by  Johnny Cash (Pisces)

The morally corrupt PISCES (key phrase: I BELIEVE) is likely to fall into drug crimes or other Neptunian mind-warps, only to meet their  sticky end in a religious cult or the House of the Rising Sun. The twelfth house also rules mental institutions, so it's possible that charismatic guru is criminally insane - don't drink the Kool Aid. The sign of the Fishes breeds compassionate, 'healers', but the flipped side of Flipper is the shark or barracuda, a paranoid, delusional liar, potentially the meanest sign in the zodiac, recipient of the worst attributes of every sign, combined. This slippery eel would leave their crime partner, bleeding on a hook, while they went to find a fix - conveniently forgetting to return. Pisces and sister Scorpio can have the most out-of-control tempers, and the fish's reputation for drinking like one is well-earned, which doesn't help.

Pisces Sun
: Tammy Faye Bakker, Osama Bin Laden, Brian Mulroney, John Wayne Gacy, Richard Ramirez ("The Night Stalker"), Aileen Wuornos
Pisces Moon: Jim Jones, Dick Cheney, Michael Jackson, Bashar al-Assad, John Wayne Gacy, Richard Ramirez

Watch: Pisces Xavier Bardem as the coin-flipping, O'Connor-esque Misfit, dishing out fate in 'No Country for Old Men'.

Fixed signs are fixated. Nothing stands between them and the object of their hate or lust. As mentioned, devilish SCORPIO (key phrase: I DESIRE) will seek revenge and prefers to execute their heinous plans from behind the scenes, getting others to carry out their misdeeds and take the rap. Nevertheless, stats show contract killers are most often Scorpios. They just enjoy killing…er, I mean, redeeming souls. Charles Manson, with Sun, Venus, Jupiter and Mercury all in Scorpio, claims he never personally committed any murders (he just used drugs and sex to psychologically dominate his 'family' members). Traditionally ruled by Mars (see Aries), modern Pluto co-rulership has given Scorps the keys to the underworld, as well as the ammunition. Arachnids of all walks are proud of their nasty bits and don't repress their shadowy side. Highly intelligent, their one downfall is believing themselves to be invisible. Scorpio Moon makes a better spy. The Plutonian psychopath also has super-human strength. They are driven entirely by wanting to have power over something or someone, hence, the largest number of government heads, worldwide, are born under this sign (followed by Leo).
Scorpio Sun: Charles Manson, Charles Koch (with dominant Pluto, Mars, Saturn), John Gotti ('Teflon Don'), Thomas Sweatt (sexually motivated, serial arsonist), Robert Pickton, Mark Lépine
Scorpio Moon: Julian Assange, Bradley Manning, Edward Snowden

"That's it ! Payback ! Revenge ! I'm mad !!"
 - The Payback - James Brown (Taurus)

Polar opposite, TAURUS (key phrase: I HAVE) is equally hell-bent, when it comes to crimes of passion, but also the sign most guilty of fraud, money laundering, investment schemes, etc. They like doing their dirty work alone, in control, without interference. If Taurus has marked something - it's theirs, be it material or human, or a country. Both Scorpio and Taurus are sneaky, suspicious, grudge holders and will stalk exes, or anyone they are obsessed with getting back at (the difference being that though one may 'feel' the Scorpio presence, they are probably not actually there or have sent a henchman). If caught, raging bulls will take others down with them or burn the loot, out of spite. Humourless, scheming, irritable, moody  and considered dangerous, the bull's violent temper is loosed when their Mercury reaches capacity (there's a reason the symbol for Mercury has a Taurus head), but most prefer to watch their foes and victims self-combust in castrated ire. Or agony. Well, they asked for it. Saddam Hussein used to video tape his prisoners being tortured, to watch later. Like real bulls, a Taurus may lower their head and peer upwards before charging - get the hell away.
Taurus Sun: Bernie Madoff, Saddam Hussein, Ayatollah Khomeini, Stephen Harper, Rev Jim Jones, Pol Pot, Timothy McVeigh, Mark Chapman
Taurus Moon:John Dillinger, Mother Teresa, Bernie Madoff, Florence Rey, Thierry Paulin

Final yoke on Taurus Sadaam, 2006

felons (key phrase: I WILL), like their Aries brethren, are not usually schemers, but can be dangerous or abusive when their hot tempers flare up, in which case you are an insect and they will crush you. (Think of a cat torturing a bird). Since they like attention so much, the Leo criminal prefers to do things on a large scale, for a wide audience, keep it dramatic, blow everyone to Kingdom Come. Leo tends to assert it's will, forcefully - they are not usually the behind the scenes or petty crime sort. And the King of the Jungle doesn't take orders, so they'll either be in the top position or act alone. Leos make great, fascist dictators. Like their Libra friends, they'll be the one in the line-up with special attention paid to appearance/grooming. Warning: Do not make fun of them. Even if not a Leo Sun or Moon, 'malefic' planets in this sign will lend a heavy-handed or explosive streak (OJ Simpson, afflicted Pluto/Saturn conjunction). More on that in Part 2.
Leo Sun: Mussolini, John Dillinger, Richard Reid (the 'Shoe Bomber'), Leona Helmsley ("Queen of Mean"), Countess Elizabeth Bathory.
Leo Moon: Paris Hilton, Margaret Thatcher, Mao Zedong, Prince Philip, Mahmoud Ahmadinejad, Ronald DeFeo Jr. (inspiration for 'Amityville Horror').

Elizabeth Bathory "The Bloody Countess"

"Fuck the Police"
 - Dr. Dre (Andre Romelle Young) NWA, Aquarius

AQUARIUS (key phrase: I KNOW), under normal circumstances, is another of the nicest, most rational signs. But watch out for the sideways Aquarian, because this sign can be the harshest of judges. Extremely manipulative and persuasive, unbearable water-bearers think nothing of getting other people into trouble, exploiting them or putting them in the wake of danger. In fact, they probably have a huge network. Having experimented with risky things at a young age and learned too fast (Saturn/Uranus co-rulership there), these hard to categorize, radical misfits march to their own drummers, making them ideal assassins, spies and gangstas. Like Gemini, they can become possessed when not in their bodies and, like Scorpio, are out for revenge. Aquarius can be detached from their emotions to the point of freezing, with sudden, volcanic eruptions, just like their firey, Leo polarity. Considered crazy. Sign most likely to instigate a nuclear, chemical or germ terror apocalypse.
Aquarius Sun: Sarah Jane Kahn (attempted Ford assassin), Sarah Palin, Jimmy Hoffa, Christopher Boyce (cold war double agent), Dick Cheney, Kim Jong-il, Nicolae Ceausescu, Anders Breivik
Aquarius Moon:David Koresh, Stephen Harper, Baron Rothschild, David Berkowitz ("Son of Sam")

1st Son of Sam letter

 "When I get mad and I get pissed
  I grab my pen and I write out a list
  Of all you assholes who won't be missed
  You've made my Shitlist !"

   - Shitlist, Donita Sparks/L7 (Aries)

The ARIES reprobate (key phrase: I AM) is most likely to be involved in brawls, shootings, or other such one-on-one, ego-assertive scenarios. Whether armed 'for a cause' or able to use nearest object as a weapon, this sign is prepared to fight - to the death, if necessary. Even non-criminal rams are highly competitive, and follow the 'scorched earth' policy of their red-faced, ruling planet. Aries tend to be hired to do crimes - hired guns, thugs, vigilantes, etc, as if with the blessing of Mars. They are walking fuel caskets, charged and ready to flip out. Think Yosemite Sam. Both Aries and polarity Libra have bipolar tendencies and will blow things out of proportion. "Are you talkin' to me ?" At least with Aries, it's usually all up front, not sinister, but again, a combination of chart factors are always at work, not just the Sun sign. Though not always apparent , Aries do have large brains, providing they haven't butted too many heads. Hunt them down at gun shows, fondling the antiques, and driving a red vehicle.
Aries Sun: Brenda Ann Spencer (hated Mondays murderess), Henri-Désiré Landru (French real-life Bluebeard, inspiration for the 1947 Chaplin film, 'Monsieur Verdu')
Aries Moon: Al Capone, Jeffrey Dahmer, Heinrich Himmler, Benedict Ratzinger, "Papa Doc" Duvalier,
Henri-Désiré Landru

"Little boy, she's from the street
 Before you start, you're already beat
 She's going to play you for a fool
 Yes, it's true"

 - Femme Fatale, by Lou Reed/Velvet Underground,
   immortalized by Nico (Libra)

Ma Barker (Libra Sun), mother and leader of the Barker Gang, 1930s

LIBRA (key phrase: I BALANCE) misfits, "generally armed and dangerous", score highest on the list of air sign rotters. Being aggressively Venusian, it stands to reason their crimes involve  money and sex; robbery, dealing, hustling, spying, trafficking, smuggling, prostitution - the basics, nothing too yucky, though as johns, they do prefer the underaged (that goes for Scorpio and Virgo, too, who flank the scales on either side). They can be found doing their business at sleazy strip clubs or the high-end equivalent. Hollywood 'cleanup' person* is their dream job. Being the shadow side of the legal scales, crooked Librans are of two minds; one concerned with materialism and appearance and the other a radical or political rebel. Sometimes it's a combo. Like it's Aries opposite, Libra has the hot air temperament and can take on the 'equalizer' role. They may work with an accomplice, due to their need to partner up.  If suspect was wearing a gold medallion and smelly cologne, that's a clue. 
Libra Sun: Vladimir Putin, Paul Rose (FLQ), Carlos the Jackal, Ma Barker, George Zimmerman, Velvalee Dickinson "The Doll Woman"
Libra Moon
: Joseph Stalin, George Zimmerman
*People hired to make sure a celebrity's crime 'never happened.' Harvey Keitel's character in Pulp Fiction,
'The Wolf' (note Mars  polarity) is based on them, but mostly they pay people off, etc.

"It's all about money, ain't a damn thing
 funny - you gotta have a con in this land  

 of milk and honey."   
  - The Message, Grandmaster Flash aka Joseph Saddler (Capricorn)

                      Cy Toliver of 'Deadwood' - Leo with Capricorn Moon ?

The most cold-blooded villain prize goes to CAPRICORN (key phrase: I USE). Apparently their numbers are evenly dispersed through all areas of crime - something to do with that 'Prince of Darkness' association, plus the built-in, scapegoat factor. Though not a mutable sign, the sea-goat is perfectly comfortable keeping a faux,  public persona, and, like their polarity, Cancer, are secretive to a fault. Born with a sense of both lack and entitlement, goat baddens are calculating, plotting and often sadistic. They love to amass wealth and are naturally drawn to organized crime or corporations, where they can move up the ranks, stabbing backs as they go, keeping it respectable. Pimping is second nature to them. It's the harshest placement for the sensitive Moon - emotional refrigeration. Yet, Capricorn is the most charitable sign, so crooked, corporate, master Billies may donate generously to the needy. This makes them look good and feel insured, while a providing safe, tax shelter.
Capricorn Sun: Richard Nixon, Al Capone, Hermann Goering, Heidi Fleiss, Clifford Olson, Kim Jong-un
Capricorn Moon: Charles Koch, Pamela Smart, a number of high ranking Nazis, including Hitler.

Saturday, January 2, 2016

Hello ? Eleventh House Calling...

Midway along the journey of our life
 I woke to find myself in a dark wood,
 For I had wandered off from the straight path.

     ~ Dante, opening to 'Inferno' (The Divine Comedy)

Gustave Doré's illustration to Dante's Inferno. Plate IX: Canto III: Arrival of Charon

If you are in Chiron return mode, as I am, the question of how to reconcile career with  vocation/calling, or perhaps even make a clean break from one to the other, might be coming up for you about now. (Incidentally, I have just purchased a copy of the Divine Comedy and intend to read it).

"Mid-life crisis" begins to nag quietly, at first, around about 40. That's when the Midheaven kicks in, the cusp of the 10th house of 'Career and Public Standing,' ruled by Saturn/Capricorn. The 11th/Aquarius house is also traditionally Saturn-ruled, but flimsily referred to as the house of 'Friends, Hopes and Wishes,' said to show where we connect with groups, rather than individuals.
The 10th house opposes the 4th house (Cancer/Moon) of roots, home, foundations, mother or mothering parent - that which first gave us an inner sense of security. So naturally, the 10th would also deal with security - that gained from what we build for ourselves, through work and effort, in the outer world. Here, we are at the mountain peak, like the Capricorn goat. 

The marble fireplace in Cragside House, Northumberland, England-photo © Danny Molyneux

The 11th house is opposite the 5th (Leo/Sun) - the fun house, where we create or procreate, with heart. 'From joy springs all creation,' is the motto of the 5th house, 'by joy it is sustained, toward joy it proceeds, and to joy it returns.*' So the 11th house must also reflect this, in the external sense. If Saturn/Capricorn is the task master who teaches us how to move up the ladder and earn, Saturn/Aquarius is the Liberator, who, around age 50, says we must now, with equal effort, devote our energies to creating our legacy of love. Yes, we also have a responsibility to tend to our soul work, not just our survival work. 
Here, if Saturn permits, we can begin to return to joy, though it may mean risking security, if we haven't tended our 10th house well enough. It's easy to 'follow your bliss' when you've got a huge nest egg, not so easy, when you've a huge debt. 

If Saturn has been a very hard task-master, it can be difficult to let go of the 10th house mentality, but if we remember that Saturn also rules the 11th, we can see it as a continuum of our work, the second part. 
Putting Uranus as ruler or co-ruler in the 11th doesn't change anything and might make it feel more dynamic - but remember, it was Saturn who castrated and succeeded his oppressive father, Uranus.  

Friends, according to the 11th house, are not partners or business connections, but people who share a common interest in that which we hold dear, who we meet along, or who can help us on our vocational path. If we are not on it by our second Saturn return (age 58-ish), we will feel older than necessary and indeed may even feel life has been wasted. The good news is that it is never really too late.

Aquarius art by Johfra Bosscha

The 11th house can be a bit of a mystery, in a chart reading, when  either it hasn't yet been activated, or the person simply has no particular calling in this lifetime. If there are more or stronger planets in the 11th than the 10th, it is quite likely the person will have a calling, which becomes their life's work. Sometimes the 11th house is more a reflection of the 'children' part of the 5th and Saturn maturity here involves being a grandparent, or returning to joy in other ways, joining clubs, taking classes for fun and to meet like-interested people, etc. 

Of course there are many in the world who are not able to make the choice between job, career and vocation, or never consider the difference. Living in a time and place where one is even faced with this decision must have taken lifetimes of work. For some, the Saturn-ruled houses have great karmic potential, especially when there are aspecting planets therein. Since the 12th/Pisces house is where unreleased karmic baggage is collected, we had better heed the calling of the 11th house, if possible.

If you bring forth what is within you, what you bring forth will save you. If you do not bring forth what is within you, what you do not bring forth will destroy you.    ~ from the Gospel of Thomas

 That old Devil Saturn ? Illustration of Lucifer in the first fully illustrated print edition of Dante's Divine Comedy
Woodcut for Inferno, canto 33. Petrus de Plasiis, Venice, 1491.

The number 11 itself is like a portal between realms, the two pillars. It's the neuter, mute number that embodies masc/odd and fem/even qualities. In Tarot 11 is 'La Force' the Force (Strength).
Is there some power that becomes available when we heed the calling of the 11th house ? Does that power become destructive if it is not heeded ? In other words, do we wish to come quietly or..?


Btw, 2016 is an 11 universal year. In the traditional way I was taught numerology, we add January 1 to the current year:

 1 + 1 + (2016)9 = 11

Even if not middle-aged, this year will certainly force us to think about the direction our lives are going in and whether we are living or just occupying space, wasting resources- both physical and spiritual. The extreme weather might cause this on a collective scale, too. Aquarius, the Water-Bearer.

(I took this photo on a walk a few hours before we had an earthquake, the other day. 
The solar flare cycle is approximately every 11 years, when the Sun sheds it's skin). 

Interesting interview with Elizabeth Gilbert (Eat, Pray, Love) on the subject of heeding the soul's calling (although she uses the term 'vocation' to describe 'career'):

 *Mundaka Upanishad 

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