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Asteroids In Astrology

Asteroids In Astrology

There is a big gap between the orbits of the planets Mars and Jupiter, and between these two planets lies the asteroid belt, an area where there are literally thousands of pieces of rock orbiting around the Sun. Astronomers believe that the asteroids are the remnant of what was once a planet.


What Are Asteroids?


Asteroids are those thousands of huge rocks orbiting around the Sun, usually between the orbits of Mars and Jupiter. Some astrologers consider them merely cosmic gravel with no value in interpreting horoscopes. But, as will be demonstrated here, asteroids not only describe abstract concepts from mythology, but they specifically relate to people like you and me.

The discovery of many new bodies orbiting the Sun beyond the orbit of formerly outermost Neptune created a crisis in astronomy. It became evident that a new definition was required to distinguish these objects from traditional planets. The term “dwarf planet” was introduced to include planetary objects smaller than planets but larger than asteroids.

Asteroids were first discovered two centuries ago when names were chosen only for mythological goddesses, e.g. Ceres, Pallas, Juno, Vesta, Astraea. But when the number of asteroids began to exceed the goddesses, names were chosen to honor colleagues and historical figures of both genders, as well as flowers, cities, mountains, lakes, nations and ideas.

In March, 1802, German astronomer H. Olbers discovered Pallas Athene in the main belt of asteroids, between Mars and Jupiter. It took quite some time for some other small bodies to be discovered but by 1890 the total had reached three hundred. About one hundred newly numbered asteroids are cataloged each year. Most of them are found within the main belt, which extends from 2.1 to 3.4 AU, and about half are between 2.75 and 2.85 AU. Asteroids revolve around the Sun in the same direction as the planets but tend to have more elliptical orbits. Their orbits are inclined up to 30°to the ecliptic plane, but they are far less eccentric than comet orbits. The smallest asteroids are a few kilometers wide; the largest one, Ceres (now considered a “dwarf planet”), about 1,000 kilometers wide.

Asteroids, in this century are receiving more public attention than ever before. NASA photographed a closeup of Gaspra, the first asteroid ever seen with a specific shape in 1992. Most scientists agree an asteroid was responsible for the extinction of dinosaurs. An asteroid about 15 miles in diameter almost collided with Earth in 1989 and another smaller asteroid, about 30 meters wide, came closer to Earth than any known asteroid in 1993, closer than half the distance to the Moon. A near collision with another asteroid is expected in the 22nd century.

Many scientists now agree that the mysterious massive explosion in 1908 over Tonguska, Siberia, flattening hundreds of square miles of land, was the result of an asteroid exploding just before impact with Earth.


Pluto, Chiron and the Kuiper Belt


In 1977 Charles Kowal discovered Chiron. In 1992, the first of many similar objects beyond Neptune was discovered in a region called the Kuiper Belt. This region is similar to the asteroid belt between Mars and Jupiter (the main belt) but about twenty times wider and populated by icy objects rather than the rocky and metallic bodies.

More than 130 Kuiper Belt objects (KBOs) have already been found with nearly the same 248-year period as Pluto at about 40 AU from the Sun. It is believed that the Belt contains thousands of objects larger than 100 kilometers in diameter. Some objects have been found beyond 55 AU but are believed to have been scattered into a region containing scattered disk objects (SDOs). Planetesimal objects in these latter two regions (KBOs and SDOs) are called trans-Neptunian objects (TNOs).

Thus, astronomers began to view Pluto as the largest member of the new class of plutinos and some started to question its status as a planet. The definition of a planet was given in the General Assembly of the International Astronomical Union meeting in August of 2006. An initial proposal recommended that Pluto be retained as a planet and that Ceres, Charon, and Eris be added to the list of planets. An alternate proposal was offered suggesting an intermediate category for objects like Pluto, which are large enough to be nearly round but too small to clear their orbits of other planetesimals. The IAU accepted the later proposal and by unanimous vote it was agreed to call these intermediate objects “dwarf planets,” with smaller objects to be called “small solar-system bodies.”

In the same meeting, the IAU announced only three members of the dwarf planet category: Ceres, Pluto, and Eris. The IAU already maintains a dwarf planet watch-list of about a dozen candidates, which keeps changing as new candidates are found. The candidates include the plutinos Orcus and Ixion, cubewanos Quaoar and Varuna, and the SDO Sedna, all of which are similar in size to or larger than Ceres but are not yet established as round.


The Asteroids in Astrology


Astrologically, asteroids represent the gate to the individual. Here we move from abstract keywords of planets to explicit people, places, and things. “As above, so below” now includes “The Name.”

What appears to be “whim” or “coincidence” in naming asteroids correlates with earthbound events as much as more abstract concepts assigned planets. And correlations are not limited to the intent of the person naming the asteroid. By blending the deeply personal asteroid name with more abstract meanings of planets, houses and aspects, the horoscope becomes richer and explicit. And asteroid returns are as impressive as solar and lunar returns.

Some asteroid-oriented astrologers speculated that the larger asteroids ruled zodiac signs. E. Bach assigned Ceres asteroids and Vesta the rulership of Virgo, and Juno and Pallas the rulership of Libra. However, spreading out sign rulerships to more than one planet did not strike a favorable chord among non-asteroid astrologers. Named after mythological figures, places or real people all these newcomers in the astrological pantheon created an abundance of astrological interpretations but their sheer number (around 10.000 in good astrological software) discourages their incorporation to the horoscope. The consensus on the matter, proposed by J. Lee Lehman in his “Ultimate Asteroid Book”, that the interpretation be based on the asteroid’s name, is absurd, as they are named totally arbitrarily, for example, after the discoverer’s cat or his new car model. Yet, the focus on Ceres, Pallas, Juno, and Vesta by asteroid advocates has generally eased the anxiety of astrologers.

According to Jacob Schwartz, Ephemerides were not available for asteroids until the late 20th century, so studying the implications of asteroids was not possible for almost two centuries after the discovery of Ceres. The vast majority of astrologers did not know they existed, or those who knew about them said they were “cosmic gravel,” not real planets, unimportant, insignificant; the ten regular planets were enough. And those who might have considered using four new points like the four largest asteroids Ceres, Juno, Pallas and Vesta, plus the comet Chiron were shocked with the realization that it didn’t stop with those, but there were thousands of them. At the very moment skater Nancy Kerrigan was attacked by Shane Stant in her dressing room in Detroit, 6 January 1994, 2:20 p.m., asteroid Tanya was conjunct lord of the underworld Pluto on the descendent, asteroid Harding was on the eastern horizon, and asteroid Shane formed a perfect triangle on the nadir of the chart.

There are over 10.000 named asteroids– while more are named periodically. It is sometimes difficult to get an exact summary of asteroids’ role in astrology. For, while the Planets’ astrological meanings each have deep mythologies stemming from Greco-Roman culture and history, only a few (comparatively) asteroids have mythological names- and some of these even are Egyptian, or Norse (Norwegian) or other cultures.

These mythological names come with their own meanings steeped in history and culture. But, I feel, as with the Planets – interpreting an astrology chart is like writing an in-depth essay on a piece of literature – you will find many minutiae of differences between esteemed astrologers – for several reasons.

Many asteroids seem to be just personal names, because it is not generally public knowledge the story of who named each asteroid, and for who or what reason! There are many famous names in the asteroids, such as Shakespeare, Chaucer, Sophocles, and more. There are, understandably, also many foreign names, including Japanese, Chinese, German, Hispanic, and others! (which are applicable for us if they are also famous names, place names, or mythological names.)

Since there are so many of them, it is difficult to see whether they can be of any use in astrology, but many astrologers choose to use the four major asteroids- and I’ve certainly found that they seem to have an effect in a chart.

Because they are so small and so abundant, asteroids can focus upon explicit relationships between people, places and things; they simply identify the name of the who, the name of the place, the name of the what, and when these names connect.

As well as asteroids, there are other bodies orbiting the Sun beyond the orbit of Saturn. The first of these, Chiron, was discovered in 1975 but many more have been discovered since then. These bodies are known as centaurs and Chiron is named after a mythical centaur – half man, half horse – of Greek mythology.


 The Myths of the Asteroids


The planets and asteroids are named after Roman and Greek gods and goddesses whose stories have their roots in Ancient Greece. Through knowing the myths of these archetypal figures, it is possible to easily understand why each planet and asteroid has a particular interpretation in astrology. The relationships between these deities can also shed light on the interpretation of aspects made by asteroids to each planet in the natal chart.

The myths of the asteroids, the chunks of rock that float through the asteroid belt between Mars and Jupiter, add extra depth. Healing (Chiron), nurturing (Ceres), conjoining (Juno), understanding (Pallas Athene) and compassion (Vesta) are the qualities that they embody.

Excerpt from the book Understanding the Planetary Myths – Tenzin-Dolma


 The Four Major Asteroids


Some of the tiny planetoids generally found orbiting the Sun in a belt between Mars and Jupiter are felt to hold important astrological influences. It should be noted that the sphere of influence of these bodies “overlap” influences of the larger celestial bodies in some areas. They are, in essence, fine-tunings of the larger picture.

For instance Pallas Athena is said to be able to see the larger, holistic picture from both sides with a sense of fairness (Libra). She represents creativity (Sun) and healing (Chiron) through feminine wisdom. Vesta represents goodness and fulfillment of a greater cause – a trait shared by Uranus.

The table below shows the basic keywords associated with the four major asteroids, and with Chiron.

 Ceres astrology symbol Asteroid Ceres On January 1, 1801, the Sicilian astronomer monk Giuseppe Piazzi discovered Ceres, naming it after the Roman goddess of agriculture (=Greek Demeter).

According to Demetra George, Ceres symbolizes attachment to whatever we have given birth to or created. As well, one typical kind of Ceres issue is an obsessive relationship with food, including the whole range of eating disorders and food-related illnesses.

The goddess of the harvest, Ceres relates to nurturing, directing energy to instinctive, creative, reproductive goals. Cycles, procreation, rites of passage and the emotional attachments of “letting go” are under the Ceres sphere of influence.

The myth of Ceres (Demeter), an earth goddess archetype, tells of the sudden abduction of her much loved daughter Persephone by the lord of the underworld. Demeter chooses to give up her divine nature and wander the world of humans where she is reunited with her transformed daughter once each year.

Ceres can point to the things we have to give up in order to achieve transformation, the things that we may cling to – unwilling to let go as well as things we are searching for.

 asteroid juno symbol Asteroid Juno The goddess Juno was the wife of Zeus, and is connected with relationships and marriage, giving away individual power for the benefit of a relationship.

Juno (Hera) represents both the positive and negative sides of our need for relationships. Commitment, infidelity, equality and submissiveness all fall into Juno’s realm – as do a sense of duty and social obligation.

According to Demetra George, Juno represents that aspect of each person’s nature that feels the urge to unite with another person to build a future together in a committed relationship. Juno speaks to one’s desire to connect with a mate who is one’s true equal on all levels. She makes us confront the issues of submission and domination, fidelity and infidelity, trust and deception, forgiveness and revenge. In today’s world, Juno is also a symbol for the plight of battered and powerless wives and minorities; for the psychological complexes of love-addiction and codependency; for the rise in divorce rates as people are driven to release un-meaningful relationships; and for the redefinition of traditional relationships in the face of feminism and of gay and lesbian coupling.

In mythology, Juno seduced by Zeus, marries him and is forced to share the alter for hundreds of years endured a marriage characterized by power struggles over issues of fidelity and equality. Juno was said to retreat from this tense life from time to time in order to renew and center herself.

Juno represents our need for relationships as well our need for personal power and equality – the struggle for balance between intimacy and freedom. She is an emblem of finding oneself spiritually in order to preserver and triumph through the most difficult of circumstances.

 Pallas astrological symbol Asteroid Pallas Athene The warrior goddess, Pallas Athene is connected with inner strength and intuition, directing energy away from emotional and into mental pursuits.

Pallas represents a feminine spirit of independence and cool mental judgment in either a man’s or a woman’s chart.

Inner courage, confidence in our abilities, creative and artistic vision fall under the influence of Pallas.

According to Demetra George, Pallas represents the part of a person who wants to channel creative energy to give birth to mental and artistic progeny. She represents the capacity for creative wisdom and clear thinking, and speaks to the desire to strive for excellence and accomplishment in a chosen field of expression. As a model of the strong, courageous, ingenious and artistically creative woman, Pallas Athene shows how to use one’s intelligence to achieve in practical, mental, or artistic fields; and how to work to attain worldly power.She also shows the healing modalities that are likely to work best.

There are an abundance of myths surrounding this warrior goddess (Minerva). Most relate tales of wisdom and an Amazonian quality. In the Libyan version Pallas, Athena, and Medusa were the three faces of the of the triple goddess. In another myth, through the trickery of Zeus, Athena kills her Amazonian sister Pallas during a friendly competition. Later, the grieving Athena placed her sister’s name before her own.

Pallas represents the application of practical skill and creative intelligence. A “goddess of war”, she is also possesses the ability to heal through feminine wisdom.

 asteroid vesta symbol Asteroid Vesta From the Vestal Virgins in the temple, who devoted their sexuality to the gods, this asteroid is connected with commitment, directing creative energy into personal or devotional goals.

Symbolized by the perpetually burning flames of a hearth fire, Vesta rules fidelity to self and the ability to focus inner truth and power.

According to Demetra George, Vesta represents the part of each person’s nature that feels the urge to experience the sexual energy of Venus in a sacred manner.

Vesta is a sexual sign – spiritual and devotional sex as well as sex outside of socially accepted views. She retreats from day to day life to find inner sustenance. Her retreat (retrogrades) pulls her back to her inner self and core truths. When centered, she emerges into the outside world to meets its demands.

Mythologically named for the Greek goddess Hestia, she was worshipped in ancient times at every home’s central hearth. In early matriarchal societies, priestesses honoring Vesta maintained an ever burning flame and gave themselves in sacred summer solstice rites maintaining their selfhood while revering the divine aspect of sexuality. Later, under Roman rule, they observed the vows of celibacy, relinquishing their sexuality in exchange for freedom from patriarchal control.

Vesta’s place in a chart may show the areas of sacrifice necessary and willingly given to achieve and maintain trueness to self.

 chiron symbol Chiron Chiron is also from Greek Mythology, and is one of the most famous/common asteroids. Chiron is a wise centaur who trained heroes, different from the throng of centaurs commonly known for their ‘partying.’ He was mistaken in battle and shot in the hip with a poisoned arrow – something for which he spent much of his life learning and practicing the healing arts, but which he never entirely recovered from. Chiron therefore stands for the “Wounded Healer” or Healing Journey in your chart.

Chiron is to do with where we are wounded, and where we can heal. This asteroid is connected with helping, healing, teaching others with your knowledge, and having much experience gaining knowledge from being.

Note that Chiron has been classified as a comet and not as an asteroid.


More Asteroids & Dwarf Planets


Asteroid Lilith: letting go and accepting your natural darker side, and having rebelious power.

Asteroid Persephone: the archetypal victim, suffering pain in relationship, humiliation by abduction and rape. Highly tuned into people’s feelings and needs. Alienated from conventional society. Strong connection to spirit, easily overwhelmed by feelings and impressions from the collective unconscious. Drawn to partners that attempt to dominate/control.

Asteroid Quaoar: having a spirit of intuitive, discovery/clarification.

Asteroid Sedna: having things for you go askew.

Asteroid Pholus: starting small projects that cascade into big ones.

Asteroid Nesseus: radically severing from conformaties, relenquishing denials, then entering new realms of vision and creativity.

Asteroid Asbolus: leading lonelily for survival.

Asteroid Perdix:

Asteroid Heracles:

Asteroid Urania: astrology, astronomy, treating principles and information in theoretical way, hypothetical or abstract logic and rationality, ability to see “the whole picture” and not be deterred by details.

Asteroid Themis:

Asteroids Briseis and Chryseis:

Asteroid Eris: going/standing against what everyone does (going against what the average person does), being able to share true insights, even though society does not want to hear them.

Asteroid Eros: pouring alot of passion into what you are doing. Sexuality, erotic behavior, the joy of living, what excites us, the will to live.

Asteroid Astraea: detail oriented, seeing things to the bitter end.

Asteroid Iris: receiving/storing holistic information, thinking holisticaly, or thinking up information that is holistic.

Asteroid Lameia:

Asteroid Child: Aspects relating to the characteristics of his own experiences and attitudes towards/and childhood events (ranging from innocence to immaturity).

Asteroid Sappho: friendship, bond, feeling close or equal to the other, gentle spirits, to have things in common, artistic interests.

Asteroid Daphne:

Asteroid Imhotep:

Asteroid Apollo: being able to make the best of yourself in the world at large.

Asteroid Bacchus/Dionysus: most open to inspiration and most eager for pleasure and escape from the everyday. Excess, addiction, attempts to alter the feelings, people or situations that suffer substitutions or omissions.

Asteroid Nephele:

Asteroids Pyramus and Thisbe:

Asteroid Thetis:

Asteroid Ganymed:

Asteroid Abundantia: This is fairly self-explanatory, but specifically we can take it to mean “The Land of Abundance”, or “All things having to do with Abundance.” Abundance tends to have primarily a material meaning, but it can also apply to Abundance of Wisdom, Love, Energy, Friendship – like the description of a Full Life.

Asteroid Lachesis – It is one of the Three Fates of Greek Mythology, “whose decisions could not be altered, even by the gods.” Klotho weaves the tapestry of life, Atropos holds the shears that cut the thread of life, and Lachesis assigns a life span and destiny – obviously a very interesting spot in a chart! I also find this interesting in composite, or relationship charts – indicating the flavor of the destiny of the relationship.

Asteroid Amalthea:

Asteroid Koronis:

Asteroid Niobe:

Asteroid Hygiea: Bringing things into a very pure, even ideal, state of being. Medical and health interest (especially in regards to fitness).

Asteroid Proserpina: Taking the line of least resistance (being passive or helpless), learning the consequenses this creates for you, and then changing your actions (sacraficing) do to these consequences. Separation anxiety.

Asteroid Diana: hypersensitive, acknowledging feelings and immediately putting boundaries in place to contain and protect them. In tune with nature and animals.

Asteroid Irene:

Asteroid Atlantis:

Asteroid Klytia:

Asteroid Paradise:  This is also pretty self-explanatory, but no less enjoyable!

Asteroid Viv – This word has Italian or Spanish roots meaning “Life.” It also connotes to me that certain “viva” that makes someone noticeable, that spark perhaps that makes them uniquely them. Or in a chart it may indicate where they feel ‘alive’ or what impact life has on them. I find this asteroid most useful in composite charts – a relatively newer method for relationship astrology, in which a single chart is made using the mid-points of each person’s planets. Although the composite Sun is an important basic factor in the “life force” of any relationship, (friends, family, co-workers, or lovers), Viv is an interesting body also pointing to more directly the ‘spark’ where both partners feel most alive in the relationship, or what can keep the relationship alive. I look to conjunctions especially to describe this aspect.

Asteroid Pandora: Reaching out to unexpected consequences, get “most of the efforts”, being seduced by a curiosity.

Asteroid Hephaistos (Hephaestus): talented and skillfull, but have others not understand you, avoiding you. Problems with limbs. Abandonment by the parents (most often by the mother). Tendency to unusual relationships (variations on the theme of “Beauty and the Beast”). Contact with metals.

Asteroid Eos:

Asteroid Narcissus:

Asteroid Nemesis: The Achilles heel. The Black Beast. The need to blame, to make someone a scapegoat. The identification of the “enemy”. The error or the reason for a problem.

Asteroid Circe: Helping, be of assistance and come to the rescue; act as facilitator.

Asteroid Minerva:

Asteroid Orpheus:

Asteroid Psyche: recognition of childhood trauma, psychological wounds, vulnerability, memories, inspiration, psychic vulnerability, psychological healing, head injuries.

Asteroid Panacea: what we believe we will help to find solutions, cures or remedies to the problems (not only related to health).

Asteroid Arachne:

Asteroid Sisyphus: restart, feeling like running against the wind. You must start again from the beginning, having the rug ripped out from under you when you think you’ve just arrived at the destination.

Uranians:

Cupido: associating with groups, and being arty.

Hades: can end up being shameful.

Zeus: fiery, creative, and leading.

Kronos: lofty and extraordinary.

Apollon: being progressive and abundant in energy.

Admetos: intense and focused.

Vulkanus: greatly forceful.

Poseidon: idealistic and honarable.


For the Asteroid Profiles please visit: www.Astrosavvy.com(the link will open in a new window/tab).


Is There An Asteroid With Your Name On It?


Since there so many minor bodies it can be illuminating to find your own personal asteroid – there is probably one with your own name. If so, where is it in your natal chart – and where is it now?

Until recently, you would have had great difficulty finding this out, but thanks to astro.com and serennu.com you can find out where it is in your birth chart! To find out where these bodies are in your chart, you can do this online using the “Extended Chart Selection” option on astro.com.

Some of these planets/asteroids require entering in codes. The code “hh” will include all the uranians, but you must draw these in a seperate chart, for you can only draw so many planets on a chart at once at this site; also Sedna normally doesn’t show up with the other planets/asteroids. Include Sedna on the Uranian chart, by highlighting the planet in the planet selection window.


References:


James R. Lewis, “The Astrology Book-Encyclopedia of Heavenly Influences”, Visible Ink Press, USA, 2003.

Demetra George-Douglas Bloch, “Asteroid Goddesses: The Mythology, Psychology and Astrology of the Reemerging Feminine”, ACS Publications, USA, 1990.

Jacob Schwartz, “Asteroid Name Encyclopedia” published by Llewellyn, St. Paul.

David G. Fisher and Richard R. Erickson, “The Solar System”, Salem Press, USA, 1998.

Tenzin-Dolma, “Understanding the Planetary Myths” – Quantum, Great Britain, 2005.



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