Asteroids

CHIRON
Probably the most widely used asteroid in the Asteroid Belt between Mars and Jupiter, Chiron is known as the "rainbow bridge" between earthly reality and the more transcendent realms in order to become whole. This truth-seeking Centaur teaches us about our connections to the higher realms, our divinity, and it's aspects may give us clues to that journey and the obstacles we must overcome in order to achieve clarity and purpose. He was an astrologer/healer who initiated warriors, healers and seekers and taught hunting, gymnastics, medecine, music, warfare and astrology. He is also known as "the wounded healer," he could not heal himself, but became a great healer of others, learning compassion for the plight of man through the experience of physical pain. As the final Centaur left on earth, he despaired, taking a poisoned arrow he had taught Hercules to make and dropped it on his foot, poisoning himself. Being immortal, death would not come. But his friend Hercules made a deal with Zues, who agreed to free Prometheus and to give fire to mankind in exchange for Chiron's descent into Hades, which freed them both from eternal agony. In a chart, the house placement of Chiron often marks the part of our life where we are most easily wounded. But Chiron also can signify our personal quest for truth and where we most want to explore, whether in a worldly sense or a more inner quest. Generally the journey signified by Chiron is not an easy one, with many trials and lessons learned along the way, but it is a most significant journey nonetheless.


CERES
In 2006 when tiny but potent Pluto was denounced as a planet and reduced to a celestial object by the scientific community, Ceres was right along side Pluto as one of the larger non-planet stellar bodies in our solar system. Big she is, for an asteroid, and big-hearted as well. She represents the Earth Mother archetype, Demeter, mother of Prosephone, who ate only 6 pomegranite seeds while in the underworld, where she had been kidnapped by Hades from her mother's garden. Her mother won her back for six months of the year, when the fields would blossom and feed the hungry, then fade in the cold months of winter when Prosephone would return to Hades as payment for eating those 6 seeds. As the Goddess of agriculture and the harvest, Ceres' gift is fertility, her skills include gardening, husbandry and caring for others, and her quality is nurturance. An active or well-placed Ceres in the natal chart represents one's ability to care for others in a motherly sort of way. Ceres at her best expresses unconditional love, and at her worst, either a needy co-dependence or disregard for others altogether.


PALLAS ATHENE
Pallas is known as the Warrior Goddess, strong of both body and mind, renowned for her creative intelligence as well as her prowess in battle. Her nature is independent and free-thinking and she can represent the person who is willing to set out on an unpopular course all alone, without the approval of her peers, and never turn back. Others may follow her example but by the time they do, Pallas is far ahead, and ever alone. Her character is well described by her mythological birth, where she emerged from the head of Zues, her father. Thus she is less feminine, never having passed through the birth canal of the mother, and she is more intelligent because she emerged from a God's forehead instead. Therefore she excels in politics, strategy, creative intelligence as well as the arts, wisdom, healing and androgyny. Her issues can be sexual or role imbalances, not being accepted as a woman because of her skills in the manly arts, fear of success because of the latter, and the dilemma between seeking love or creative freedom, intelligence or acceptance as a woman by a society who considers women to be less worthy than men. A strongly poisitioned Pallas in a woman's chart may indicate interest in material success, cracking the "glass ceiling," and feminism.


VESTA
The "Vestal Virgin" was not a virgin as we know it. She was rather "not possessed by any man," although she was a sexual initiatrice when called upon, in the ancient societies where her responsibilities included initiating the young men into the sexual practices of the times and keeping the rulers of the societies sexually satisfied, so that the cultures would prosper and crops would be good. Her other duties included keeping the hearth fires burning and being sure all the ritual ceremonies were carried out appropriately. Therefore, she represents liberated sexuality as well as dedication to a worthy spiritual cause. In a natal chart, depending on its position and aspects, Vesta can stand for either sexual freedom or sexual repression and often the dualism between both, meaning a person who vacillates between celibacy for awhile and then is "promiscuous" by modern standards at a different period of their life. Sex without marriage, the unpardonable sin, led to illegitimate children and ostracision in the more puritanical cultures. Shame, fear, discrimination and repression are themes. But on the other hand, her placement can also indicate dedication, clarity, illumination and aspiration. A stressed Vesta can mean an individual who is afraid of committments. Or it can mean that there will be sacrifices made in order to live a self-directed life.


JUNO
Poor Juno, the devoted and loyal wife of Zues, the profligate God who mated with every known type of creature in the old mythologies, represents committed and meaningful relations and the fulfillment and intimacy that comes from such devotion to one's mate. However, a poorly aspected or placed Juno can indicate the loneliness and isolation of not receiving the same respect that she gives. Her steadfastness is legendary, despite the injustices she endured. Therefore her placement can indicate whether some one is likely to be a devoted partner or not, but it may not reveal the quality of that relationship, which often is subject to gender bias and unequal treatment. So which is it, the magic of the sexual ritual, the intimacy of deep sharing, the alchemical union of the sexes, or the suffering that comes from infedelity and separation? A highly prominent Juno may indicate a bit of both.




LESSER ASTEROIDS

HYGEIA
The symbol for Hygeia is the caduceus - the 2 snakes winding around the staff of the magician healer. She is all about medecine in the modern world, it's successes and failures. The positive side of Hygeia embraces the New Age practices of wholism while the negative side indicates the pharmacalogical abuses of treating symptoms without paying attention to root causes. Unforntunately, I have found that when Hygeia is present in transits and locational astrology, most often her presence is a sign of some serious health imbalance that threatens the individual, even if it's just a passing flu as the transit goes over the affected locale. Perhaps her message is that when we are sick, we have 2 choices. Either treat the true causes of imbalance or merely cover up the symptoms and put off healing for another day. The latter, of course, increases the likelihood of more serious repercussions once the root causes kick in again, probably with more acute or chronic consequences.

Psyche and Eros
Psyche was born a human maiden but mastered heroic feats, obstacles placed before her by a jealous Aphrodite, in order to become immortal so that she could marry her soul mate, Eros, god of erotic love. A higher octave of Venus, Psyche's refinement comes from devotion and telepathic attunement for the purposes of union with another. She is the feminine consort par excellence. Her heightened desire for her mate often leaves her alone and yearning, but in the face of the ideal union, she cannot accept anything less. Superficial or short relationships have no thrill for Psyche as she awaits "the One."
Eros, the son of Mars and Venus, is the epitome of masculine tantric achievement and love as spiritual illumination. However, he also stands for a lusty, vital energy and his presence in a chart can sometimes be a marker for homosexuality. When Eros transits the chart, a love affair may be in the offing. Any planet aspected by Eros will indicate a "love of something" depending on the nature of the planet or asteroid. On the other hand, highly stressed in a chart, Eros can indicate obsessive-compulsive tendencies, frustrated passion or sexual impotency.

Lilith
Lilith is the counterpart to Eve. But she refused to be dominated by Adam, her husband, so she left him. She also represents the supreme anger created by such inequality. In a patriarchal society, she was perceived as poisonous, and her reputation became one of the evil seductress who hunted men only to discard them when she had been satisfied. A more enlightened view of Lilith is one who refuses to be subjugated and won't tolerate inequality in relationships. Her best quality is one of negotiation or resolving of the conflicts that arise in unequal relationships and an independent character that refuses to be abused. Alas, a stressed Lilith in a chart may indicate sexual abuse or other power struggles, rape and violence against women, especially when squared or conjuncted by Saturn, the controller.

Sappho
Often interpreted as a sign of lesbianism, Sappho strikes a bargain between Venus and Neptune, raising the frequency of love's sensitivities to include music and the arts. She favored love in all forms, without descrimination, and thus her homosexual association. But her character is more one of refinement than lust, and bonding that does not require sexual consummation to be expressed. Sappho's placement in a chart may suggest intimacy issues, depending on the aspects and planets involved.

Amor
Also of a transpersonal nature, Eros represents loving kindness and compassion, goodwill and selfless service, for the good of human kind. His empathetic nature links him to Pisces and platonic love.

Diana
Diana is Goddess of the moon, the forests and the Devas. She is a protectoress and should be invoked by all environmentalists because of her instinctual love of all that is natural and intuitive. But she also has a wild nature and can be a fierce individualist and guardian of the stages of female development from virgin maiden, to pregnant woman, to moontime feminine ways, to the post-menopausal crone. She honors and protects them all as the natural cycles of life that brings forth new life in its time. She attunes to natural rhythms rather than man-made laws.



"May the Rhythm of the Heavens Guide your Path!"