New Methods For New Planets

Climbing up Mount Pelion to the Chironian cave, a seeker would find two very different kinds of teachers in residence there: half-brothers Zeus (the Sagittarian) and Chiron (the Virgoan). One more likely to dispense wisdom and grace from atop his lofty throne, the other to gallop down the hillside to teach a disciple with his own hands, hooves on the ground. His name means Skillful Hand, and as master of healing with herbs, he taught the biggest names in ancient medicine (such as Asclepius). As guide of the hunt, he prepared Hercules, Achilles, and Jason for their quests. Chiron was also the foremost of astrologers.

In my recent article in the Career Astrologer, I introduced the Centaur planets Chiron, Pholus and Chariklo. We saw how their themes of healing come into play during the transits of 2020. Lets deepen our understanding of how these Centaurs guide individual lives, by delving in to notable case studies (in next week’s blogs).

When inviting them into our charts, remember that they are visitors from the distant Kuiper belt. Imagine these planetoids swooping toward our region of space with their orbital lassos that weave outer-planet energies into familiar Saturnian turf. Although the outer planets’ transpersonal influences can be difficult to grasp, Centaurs mediate between inner and outer realms. As “rainbow bridges,” these planets provide a missing link for the counseling astrologer.

Since his discovery in 1977, Chiron has worked his humble way into the astrological mainstream. Many know him as a Wounded Healer, Maverick, and Mentor. Now that Chiron has moved into Aries for the first time since discovery, we may find ourselves in a new era of working with the Centaurs.

The other members of the Centaur’s family lend their names to lesser-known planets which may be equally important. I have found that the Centaurs’ power to describe a “journey to enlightenment” is seen most clearly when dealt with as one whole family. This includes wife Chariklo (energy healer), daughter Okyrhoe (oracle), and friend Pholus (diviner). Viewed together, this crew of maverick planets can enlighten any chart.

In addition to the tools I introduce here, we can get to know our astrological Centaurs by tracking their transits to our natal planets and watching their natal cycles (such as the Chiron square). Yet, in working with the charts of hundreds of visionary and mystical experiences, I’ve found three methods that clarify the messages of these galactic oracles. Here I will share these ways of  revealing a Centaur’s purpose in our charts. We will look into the stories of Carl Jung, Edgar Cayce, Allen Ginsberg, and Jim Carrey to see how, with the right tools, Centaurs alone can speak to our most profound moments.

My astrological method to understand our new galactic messengers is summarised by the use of:
•Discovery Degrees: The degree on the tropical zodiac transited when astronomers first identify a new planet, especially when described by the Pleiadian degree symbols, a version of the Sabians reworked by John Sandbach. (DD)
•Centauric Progression Charts: a half-life progression for half-human Centaurs. Inspired by Davison’s Relationship Charts, calculate a chart of the midpoint in time between a birth and key event. (CP)
•Reciprocal transits between any of these points: e.g. Okyrhoe’s Discovery Degree (a), and someone’s Centaur Progressed Chariklo (b); a-b, b-a. (DD-CP, CP-DD)

Considering discovery degrees (DD) is especially helpful to understand Centaurs in action. Does the discovery of a new planet affect our consciousness? Is there cosmic significance to the moment we find a new astrological planet? The degree transited when a new planet is first observed becomes a sensitive degree on the zodiac. It’s a placeholder for that planet: when traversed by another, it’s as if a ‘shadow transit’ to the discovered planet occurs. Even transits prior to discovery seem to reflect the planet’s essence.

The Centaurs weave connections between ethereal Neptune and the solid ground of Saturn. Melanie Reinhart finds that they “help us integrate the high voltage frequencies of the outer planets, which without mediation, may blow apart our Saturnian reality.”

What does a Centaur feel like in our chart? How does it appear in our lives? We all know the feel of Saturn as we thud against its stone wall during a hard transit. It’s part of us: our bones, our time. Neptune, by contrast, is both dream and delusion, a misty lack of definition. Natal Chiron can appear first as the thorn in our side, the hurt which makes us seek help. If we find a spiritual friend to show the way, our hero’s journey takes shape. Chiron can represent each of these steps on the path.

As she weaves across the threshold between Saturn and Uranus, Chariklo connects our bodies with the beyond. She relates to our aura, the spirit around our form. This fits her planetary situation: Saturn is our skeleton, and Uranus sparkles through us as vibrating currents of kundalini. Though both Chiron and Chariklo travel near Uranus, Chariklo’s orbit – less eccentric than the others – resonates with Uranus. Chariklo thus activates our subtle bodies. She can appear as the grace of love’s healing power. At her more Saturnian side, she guides relationship boundaries, while her Uranian face is the thin veil between soul and cosmos.

Traveling beyond Saturn’s turf and crossing Neptune’s boundary to the Kuiper Belt, Pholus brings us closer to the realm of pure consciousness. We may find astrological Pholus deep within our personal caves, guarding goblets of potent brew.

As a planet, Okyrhoe’s reach is not quite as vast as that of her parents. She takes only 24 years to orbit, elliptically reaching out past Saturn in a cycle that puts her in 2:1 resonance with  uncle Jupiter. Orbiting in phase with Zeus/Jupiter grants her a direct line into the mind of the Gods. She is the uncanny voice within, our own inner oracle. If heeded, Okyrhoe flows to us the best cosmic information.

Up next: The Centaurs’ Mythic Zodiac, The Astrological Centaurs, and case studies galore! Then, Nessus.

Nodal Notes: Aquarian Entrances

In a recent post, which I expanded in an article published in the OPA and on, I introduced the current transits of Chiron, Pholus and Chariklo with respect to their planetary nodes. That article took a wide view, back from the 1950s into the 2040s. Here we can focus on the present year: 2020. What a year it is. What perspective can Centaurs add?

As I’ve mentioned, the Nodal Axis of both Chariklo and Pholus span the zodiac in oppositions within a degree of each other. That is, Centaurs Pholus and Chariklo happen to share opposing nodal placements. 

From this we can infer an interchange of astrological function: a shared evolutionary axis points to a link in their planetary biographies, past and future. We can think of nodes as indicators of the planet’s purpose as a member of our astrological solar system. Like the Moon’s Nodes, planetary Nodes mark where a planet’s orbit crosses the ecliptic plane. Here we look at the nodes of planets heliocentrically, from the perspective of the Sun.

In early Leo/Aquarius, Chariklo’s nodes fall just beyond the Cancer/Capricorn boundary, where we find the Nodes of many planets including Saturn. Pholus, who travels between the known (Saturn) and unknown (Neptune), has nodal crossings at the end of the Cancer/Cap zodiacal axis. Chiron’s transit to this axis, in two decades hence (2041), will activate both additional Centaurs by means of their nodes. 

Mark Jones paraphrases Dane Rudhyar: “Nodes refer to the complete evolutionary arc of that planet and the archetype that it represents. The planetary nodes, then, refer to the meaning of the entire orbital cycle of that planet. This can include the whole history of that archetype as it operates on an individual and collective level.”

The Nodal Situation 2020 and 2041

Conjunction of one planet to another’s North Node represents a time of checking in with how the transited one is getting on with its mission. As the most Uranian of Centaurs, Chiron the maverick has nodes in late Libra/Aries, which make a cross to the other centaur nodes. 

This gets touched off when our Chiron-Pholus cycle culminates in 2041, at the opposition phase of the 360 degree journey around the Sun. That future opposition aligns with the Nodes of both Pholus and Chariklo, which straddle the Capricorn-Aquarius cusp (and its opposite). At that time (in August 2041) Chiron in late Cancer will conjoin Pholus’ North Node, and Pholus will inhabit his own South Node. Three Centaurs will link together in the transits of two: Chiron will land on Chariklo’s South Node, Pholus on Chariklo’s North Node. This rare occurrence befits our first ‘conscious’ iteration of their cycle, post-discovery.

Remember that this year (one long quarter through already) began with the Saturn-Pluto-Chariklo stellium, at Pholus’ degree of aphelion. The structures have fallen in pathetic clockwork, leaving us exposed, unhoused, unprotected by the crumbled edifice of previous cycles. Chariklo hovers, whispering the trans-Uranian-new… yet now is no time for romance. “Social Distance”, utterly base-level Chariklo, can at best provide us collective healing through enforced personal space.

And Saturn enters Aquarius, the social sign. Arbiter of worldly boundaries, Saturn transits the North Node of Chariklo throughout 2020, even stationing retrograde conjunct that point. The Senex travels close all year, passing back over the South Node of Pholus, approaching the Aphelion of Pholus as it stations direct in September.

Late March was marked by the reboot energy of Mars-Saturn in the first degree of Aquarius, and something bright hovers on the horizon as Winter Solstice hosts a Jupiter-Saturn conjunction in the same degree.

Pleiadian Symbol for Aquarius 1: In the desert a way station to comfort travelers.

timeline of a pandemic

With some hesitation, I am sharing this [edit: on March 16] astrological timeline of what I have come to understand as the signifiers of the worldwide pandemic we face today. For now it is offered without much commentary. For the dates in the past, you can see how they correlate with landmark moments of the viral spread of COVID-19. I’m not interested so much in the birth chart of the disease, which is probably not known, but in seeing how the planets moving forward will touch off the key degrees established by Eclipses and Lunations, etc.

Some of the upcoming transits of asteroids and centaurs align at the same time as known ‘warning signs’ such as Mars-Saturn, Jupiter-Pluto, etc. For astrological overviews of the epidemic see: Astrobutterfly; Anthony Louis, who takes Evangeline Adams’ approach; and Alex Miller, whose work (via my friend at Astrokastalia) brought the importance of asteroid Koronis to my attention.

Now that President Trump has announced the obvious, that this won’t be over by summertime, I feel less wary of publishing this timeline which clearly indicates a continuation through July. I believe we deserve the most information as possible about this situation, including what the planets have to tell us of the cosmic timeline. The rubric for this timeline is the Mercury Retrograde cycle, from Pisces to Aquarius and now back to Pisces.

Therefore: [updated June 27, 2020]


The main centaurs involved are Chiron and Pholus, whose transits this year I’ve written about over at When Pholus conjoins the Lunar South Node, the theme of purging of consequences from the past seems prominent. Chariklo was a big factor in the Saturn-Pluto conjunction, even lending herself as “guard of personal space” to our new-found state of universal quarantine following the very Saturn-Pluto situation. Centaur Okyrhoe indicates telling the truth at danger to oneself, and Nessus of working through poison toward redemption.

Expect news of innovation – or technocratic malfeasance – when signifier Koronis meets TNO Borasisi, which is an indicator of scientific progress, often at great cost.

About Centaur Healing

At the Centaur Space, we offer astrological perspective through readings that incorporate the Centaur planets. Yet, beyond the valuable support provided by an astrological reading – which gives you a time-based overview of your life and all the perspective that can offer – we deliver a unique modality of spiritual healing, too.

With confidence in the helpful presence of the energies we refer to collectively as Centaurs (which include the Nymphs as feminine complements), the purely descriptive information of astrology (definitely healing in its own right) is augmented by an infusion of specific bandwidths of healing energy that correspond to the planets Chiron, Chariklo, Pholus, and Okyrhoe.

To elaborate:

Pholus – earth-dwelling holder of healing ambrosia, this kind Centaur helps us ground into the Earth.
He heals Root center disconnection, and offers ancestral clearing.
Also helps open psychic awareness, aids mantic arts of divination.
(Earth Element)

Chariklo is a lovely nymph Goddess who offers healing of the Sacral center and emotional body.
She is a keeper of Mysteries and bestower of Grace and Ecstatic experiences.
(Water element)

Chiron the Master Healer guides those on a healing path and those who practice the healing arts. Provides knowledge and skill, offers perspective in dreams.
Chiron’s healing improves self esteem, will, empowerment (Solar Plexus center) and can coordinate healing processes.
(Fire Element)

Okyrhoe the Oracle, water Sprite of Vision: her healing is multidimensional, blissful, and opens our Voice center to speaking truth, helping to process ideas and expired thoughtforms. Clairvoyance and inner guidance. Transcends time.
(Air element)

This approach is keeping with the ancient tradition of astral magic, which employs various means of harnessing planetary energy to improve life, both individual and collective. If one has a “Saturn problem”, one can invoke and work with Saturn in a constructive manner. To this day, for example, the astrologers of India work with planets in a devotional approach to help clients upgrade their charts, so to speak. Likewise, a resurgence of interest in traditional planetary magic reminds us that planets are more than symbols on a page or big rocks in the sky.

With modern astrology, equipped with the outer planets and beyond, we have the opportunity to renew our contracts with the planetary energies of our solar system. While the traditional seven planets (the five visible planets plus the Sun and Moon) are fundamental to life on Earth, the newly found bodies that orbit our Sun provide a more complex and nuanced trove of what some might call archetypes. In actuality, though, these archetypes are often mirrors to divinities, such as many of those planets named for Indigenous deities or Greek gods (like Altjira or Chiron).

The most direct way of working with these newly accessible planetary energies is brought together in what we call the Centaur Attunement. You can read more about this healing process here.

Astral Magic and Energy Healing converge in both group and individual settings which let you experience first-hand the readily available and deep healing of the Centaurs. Get in touch to schedule a 1:1 attunement, energy healing or Centaur astrology reading.

Check to see when our next group attunement meets!

Chiron-Pholus: The Sandpaper of Life

Welcome to Scorpio Season! The Sun today enters a new sign and shines a positive light on Pholus, recently into Capricorn. For all our talk, the Sun’s entry into a new sign is only a ‘background radiation’ for the month. The distinct patterns of time come into focus through a look at planetary aspects.

[Please note an updated version of this article is now published through the Career Astrologer on AstroDienst]

Earlier this year, the cup-bearing Centaur of divine ambrosia, Pholus, dipped into Capricorn, only to travel again in Sagittary for many moons. This was a reprise of his time in 2016-7 on his centaury ‘home turf’. Through much of 2016- and 2017 Pholus skirted the edges of the Galactic Center, at Sagittarius 27: “Sanding and sanding a sculptor is carefully modulating and refining a curve.” (Pleiadian Degree Symbols) The symbol feels right for a centaur like Pholus: cosmic sandpaper grinds down all the karmic rough spots: it hurts, yet we become smoother for having lived through it. What curves has life been artfully, if gratingly, modulating for you?

Centaur Pholos

Chiron and Pholus have squared, first from mutables (Pisces/Sagittarius), and now cardinal signs (Aries/Capricorn). Fortunately these two are friends, vs. being antagonistic. They have similar aims: of helping us reach spiritual healing. Visionary keywords for Chiron-Pholus together, which I derived from their mutual presence in the discovery chart of each, are Celebration of Life and Renewal. So however it feels in the process, the purpose of their lessons are joyful.

Centaurs are eccentric: they weave weird webs for our world. Their sense of time is not steady, like our even-keel around the solar zodiac in twelve segments. From our point of view (geocentric), the Centaurs make paths that are both elliptical and off-center around the Sun. This makes their travels through the signs of the zodiac hard to keep track of. It’s in the ephemeris, but it’s hard to discuss in a straight line. Especially when we are looking at the relationship of two centaurs, like Pholus with Chiron.

A Little Book of Coincidence in the Solar System (Wooden Books) includes a surprise end-plate illustration of what I’m talking about, here: you can see the beautiful symmetry between say, Saturn and the outer planets, compared to say Chiron as it blends with either planet.

(John Martineau)

As it happens, the 20th and 21st Centuries are host to especially weird centaur cycles. If we are trying to figure out the current Chiron-Pholus cycle (of healing ancestral karma), this is important. Where does the cycle (that now reaches an opening square) begin? And its history? Pedigree of a cycle: Checking out Robert von Heeren’s deep research is an ideal start. He’s plotted the paths of each centaur to the other – for the win. What a funny plot the Chiron-Pholus is:


We can see that historically, there have been many Chiron-Pholus squares (see all the curves running through the 90° line.) Most of those are in the 17th and 18th centuries on this 450-year plot. Actually, check out the 180° line at top — so many years have hits there: these two centaurs spend a lot of time at odds, at opposite zodiacal poles.

So, in a broad stroke we can see that much of our ‘Medieval’ and early modern history is colored by the Chiron-Pholus opposition. More recently, they also opposed in the 19th and 20th centuries several times.

In a 500 year period they can reach opposition about a dozen times, while actually conjoining only half as many times. The conjunction then, marks a mini-epoch in human history. For all the weirdness, their total cycle is of a (near-) regular 100 years: they meet every century, give or take a couple years, then do the whirly-gig dance of healing from then out.

But, to return to the point: check out this 100 year chunk, from mid 20th to mid 21st c. There was the conjunction of 1956 (in Aquarius), and then in the 1990s there was a close-but-no-centaur conjunction, before stretching way up to an opposition in a short few decades:

  • 1939 Opposition, mid-Cancer/Capricorn
  • 1956 conjunction in Aquarius, in the lead up to which they span 180 degrees in a few years;
  • 1956-2019 waxing into the slower opening square we find ourselves in today.

In the 2040s, Pholus will live out his stay in Capricorn that we are now entering. This exit won’t happen without lots of action, though, in the form of reaching two phases in their cycle:
Chiron and Pholus wax to their next opposition by 2041, in the last degrees of the Cancer/Capricorn axis (Aug 2041). Then, by late Aug 2048, Pholus and Chiron reach the waning square of this cycle.

Our present Chiron-Pholus cycle concludes in 2060, at the end of Aquarius. So this centauric “Age of Aquarius” begins and ends in the sign of the Water Bearer, which is a worthy symbol of Pholus, holder of visionary ambrosia. The Centaur’s function in both myth and reality is to safeguard what is most potent and valuable for when the time comes to pop the cork on that emergency bottle and drink deep from life’s mysteries. Times of sudden initiation, breakthrough, and spiritual crisis.

Square aspects, especially in the waxing phase that we find ourselves in, are never easy. Often the best solace we can take is seeing how the part fits into the whole picture. It is notable how the cycle begins in the ’50s, when the “Aquarian Generation” of Boomers took birth. We have inherited their crises, as all generations do from the prior one. This waxing square is the deep work of ancestral healing – even healing those ‘ancestors’ who still live. We heal the part of them that is in us: in our genes, habits, thought patterns. It’s the “Harmony is Strife” phase of the cycle, as warned by Heraclitus.

Pholus may have ‘died’ in Chiron’s [a cave], at the sharp end of Herakles’ arrow, but I can assure you that the wisdom-being inspiring that tale lives today, in his aquarian realm. Likewise, Chiron the Master Teacher and Healer exists in a crystalline presence as close to you today as any other dream-mentor. If that sounds inspiring to you, please just reach out to learn more.

This year (2019-2020) is conditioned by two major Centaur aspects: the Chiron-Pholus square, and Chariklo’s conjunction with Saturn-Pluto. Saturn has recently been dredged by a long dalliance with the South Lunar Node. Karma karma karma.

For the year ahead: first in late 2019 we experience a final Chiron-Pholus square, then the Saturn-Pluto conjunction of Jan 12, 2020. This is actually an exquisite realignment stellium of Pluto-Saturn-Ceres-Sun-Chariklo-Mercury, all within a day. My next article will focus on this grand astrological occurrence, which may be kinder than the rumor-mills have led us to believe…

If you would like to see how these Centaurs are playing out in your journeys through life, please contact me for an astrology reading and/or centaur energy healing attunement.