Saturday, January 23, 2010

Super Moon and the Lunar Nodes

On the morning of January 30, 2010, the Moon will be full while it it is also at its perigee point, when it is nearest to the Earth, a so-called Super Moon. The Moon will appear larger than normal. As such, the combination may have a somewhat more pronounced geological, tidal and societal influences than usual, although this depends critically on linkages to the natal charts of nations and individuals.

On January 30, 2010, the Moon will be at 16° Cancer in the sidereal zodiac while the Sun will be at 16° Capricorn. The Moon is very strong in the sign Cancer and both Sun and Moon are strong in the middle of a sign. When planets are strong, they are considered less harmful. That said, the Moon will be closely conjunct Mars while the Sun will be conjunct Venus. Both Mars and Venus are weak, as Mars is debilitated in Cancer and Venus is combust the Sun. Importantly, as neither the Sun nor Moon will be conjunct the nodal axis at the time, there is far less strain than would otherwise be the case. In other words, no eclipse takes place at the time of the Full Moon when it is at its nearest point to the Earth. That said, an annular (smaller) eclipse took place on January 15, 2010, when the Moon was at apogee, or at the orbital point when it is furthest away from the Earth.

Astronomy of the Moon and lunar nodes
The astronomy of the Moon and the lunar nodes, Rahu and Ketu, is intimately linked. The lunar nodes trace out the point in the moon's orbit that crosses the Sun's orbit, the ecliptic.[1] These invisible calculated points, which are 180° appart, move in retrograde motion through the sky, at an average speed of 19° 20' per year with reference to the zodiac. The nodes pass through each zodical sign in just under 19 months, or one year and seven months, although this is slightly variable, given the elliptic orbit of the Moon, which gives rise to stationary periods of the true nodes at intervals of around 3 months, with the nodes coming to near stop every 9° or thereabouts. Rahu passes from 30° Sagittarius on November 3, 2009 to 30° Scorpio on May 4, 2011. It takes the nodes just under 19 years to complete the full zodical circumference. For instance, Ketu moves from 30° Virgo on February 23, 2005 and will return to this point on November 29, 2023.

The Moon's orbit around the Earth is inclined just over 5° with regard to the ecliptic and is elliptical. At one end of its elliptic path it makes its closest approach to the Earth at 356,410 km (221,473 miles), known as perigee. At the other end it reaches its greatest separation at 406,697 km (252,722 miles), called the apogee. Seen from the earth, the Moon appears 10-12% larger during perigee compared to the apogee! The period between successive perigees (or apogees) is called the anomalistic month, equal to 27.56 days. The Moon's motion is seen to be faster during its perigee and slower during the apogee.

Rahu is the ascending or north node while Ketu is the descending or south node. As Rahu is linked to the lunar perigee, or the point in the lunar orbit when the Moon is closest to the earth, Ketu is related to the lunar apogee when the Moon is farthest away from the Earth. When the Moon is near the Perigee it is more than one tenth times as large in the sky as it is when it is at the apogee point.[2]

The link below opens a handy calculator for the times of the Moon's perigee and apogee as well as the new and full Moon.

Importance of the nodes
The astological influence of the Moon and the Moon's nodes are very different. This is linked to the Moon and the nodes being mythological enemies! Indeed, the Moon, like the Sun is a major light and source of life, while the Moon's nodes are shadowy planets that bring out the karma, or lessons of life. The importance of the lunar nodes derives from them being ancient astronomical devices to calculate the solar and lunar eclipses. The mythology of the nodes as enemies of the Sun and Moon, the major lights of the earthly sky, has to do with them swallowing up the Sun or Moon during eclipses. Eclipses occur when the Sun or Moon pass over the nodal axis. At those time, the Sun and Moon line up in relation to the earth, increasing the gravitational pull which historically has been associated with tidal and geoseizmic events. Additionally, the full Moon is often linked to emotional imbalances. Some argue that as the human body is two thirds water it is also influenced by the extremes of gravitational forces, affecting also the mind.

Astrology of Rahu and Ketu
According to the Systems' Approach the the Moon's nodes have the following meaning:

"Rahu is personified as a diplomat and a shadowy planet and a legendary deceptor when disposed beneficially. Indicates diplomatic jobs, jobs requiring manipulations with facts, deals in poisons and drugs. It signifies cheats, pleasure seekers, insincere and immoral acts, etc. It is phlegmatic in nature and gives malignant growth. When afflicting, causes malignant growth, disease of phlegm, intestines, boils, skin, ulcers, spleen, worms, high blood pressure, etc. It gives smoky and unpleasant appearance due to habits of overeating, resulting in foul smells and unclean body and nails." Rahu is related to crisis due to manipulation. In mundane astrology, Rahu rules over diplomats, salesmen (along with Mercury) and winemakers, etc.

"Ketu is dry and fiery in nature. Its affliction causes wounds, inflammations, fevers, intestinal disorders, aberrations, low blood pressure, deafness, defective speech and gives emaciated body with prominent veins. It is personified as a saint and inclines a person more towards mystic science and spiritual pursuits." Ketu can bring about sudden, explosive events. In mundane astrology, it is related to spiritual people and people that become isolated from others, for a number of reasons. This last element seems to resonate with Ketu being linked to the apogee and thus being associated with the Moon when it is furthest from the Earth.

The Sun and Moon
"The Sun is the king in the planetary cabinet. It is the source of light and life. It signifies father, which is the source for bringing into existence and supporting a new born in life…The Sun is a male planet…Its nature is royal, benevolent and cruel and its temperament is fixed and steady." [3] In mundane astrology Sun signifies the leader of a country and the authority of the state.

"The Moon is the queen in the planetary cabinet. Next to the Sun, the role of the Moon is very important as it signifies mother. The mother brings up the child and is the first preceptor of the child. That is why the Moon signifies mind also…The Moon is a female planet. In mundane astrology, the Moon represents the administrator, masses, natural resources."

Astrology of the New and Full Moon
The Moon is considered to be strongest when it is full, or opposite from the Sun when seen from the Earth. It is considered strong when it is more than 72° away from the Sun. When closer to the Sun than that it has less light and is considered to have less strength. When the Moon is new it is in line with Sun on the same side of the Earth and hence its tidal influence could be greater, especially when perigee. Some scientists consider this influence potentially important for geoseismic activity.[4]

Possible influences
There are no major events seen in the SAMVA USA chart linked to this full Moon. However, as the nodes are presently stationary afflicting natal Venus, the 4th lord in the chart, which rules fixed assets and natural resource, geoseizmic activity cannot be excluded at such a time.

A repeat in 2011
A repeat of the Full Moon - Perigee configuration will occur on March 19, 2011 with the Moon at 5° Virgo and Sun at 5° Pisces. However, no planets will be closely conjunct the major lights at that time.

[1] Lunar Nodes and Eclipses
[2] Wei-xing, Niu (2003). “An inquiry into the astronomical meaning of Rahu and Ketu.” Shanghai Observatory, Chinese Academy of Sciences, Shanghai. Elsevier Science B.V.
[3] The Systems' Approach by V. K. Choudhry
[4]John P. Bagby (1973), "Further evidence of tidal influence on earthquake incidence." and G. Cevolani and G. Bortolotti (1987) "On a possible seasonal tidal influence of lunar cycles on precipitation data."

No comments: