by Boots Hart, CAP

Sunday, July 15, 2012

Eris Stations at a New Moon

 Moonlit Seascape with Shipwreck by Ivan Aivasovsky (1817-1900)

Astrologically, Thursday July 19th may be many things…but boring is not likely to be one on the list. At the very least it’ll be interesting. Maybe even thought provoking. Or exciting.

Then again, it could be cataclysmic. Or problematic. Even shocking.

Whatever it is, it won’t be that ‘same ol’, same ol’’ thing.

The particulars here are as follows:

- Dwarf planet Eris will go retrograde at 11:22 p.m., UT/+0 time.

- A New Moon at 26 Cancer occurs at 4:25 in the morning, UT/+0 time.

Obviously this means that for some (notably those who live a time zone or more east of Greenwich) Eris will go retrograde on July 20th…with the New Moon occurring on the 19th. And for others (those living more than 4 time zone hours west of Greenwich) the New Moon will occur late on the 18th with Eris going retrograde on the 19th.

Usually I simply giving you the time and let you sort it out from there. I’m pointing this out today simply because we’re talking about two separate astrological issues which, because of their proximity in time may combine to create a pot-sticker of a time in your life.

Then again, they may apply to two very different things.

That now dutifully disclaimed, on to the meat of the subject…as we has now been noted many a time, all celestial stations, be they into retrograde or retrograde-direct, are given at least a two-day ‘station allowance. (I’m beginning to be inclined to think that perhaps should be three days going into the station and two days coming out of it, but that’s just a theory I’m playing with as yet…though input is welcome!)

What this amounts to is the idea that Eris’ turn to retrograde occurs late on July 19th, but the effects of same begin on the 17th. (Maybe even the latter part of the 16th, yes.) Coming into this station, Eris is in direct motion. That tells us that the ‘Eris Effect’ – that of provoking or evoking emotionalism or emotional reactions – comes from outside of us and affects our sense of being.

That ‘being’ part comes from Eris’ current transit ‘being’ in Aries, sign of Self. Will this effect be physical or merely psychological?


 Eris and Eris' moon, Dysnomia, as photographed
by the Hubble Telescope (photo credit: NASA-JPL)

I know, I know…that’s a snotty way to answer. But it’s true – and I may as well cut to the chase as anything else. Eris’ station may be physical, psychological, environmental, experiential, emotional, or any combination of the above. To be noted as well, this ‘Eris Effect’ may not be directly about your emotionality or your physicality. In other words, it may be something which happens to someone else or which merely ‘happens’ which ends up affecting you. Maybe someone else gets their ‘dream job.’ Might that cause you to think about whether you’re trying hard in your own life or not? Or maybe someone you have long respected and trusted is shown up to be a lying crumb. How would that affect you – not just your relationship with them, but your overall sense of trust, your willingness to invest your faith in others?

What does all that mean?

Maybe a law will get passed somewhere which changes what you can buy? Or whether you can buy it at all? What if that law changed the standard of education for your children – or your pension fund structure? Or your health care?

Those things which have the power to challenge our sense of survival and trust in life, our sense of world order or ‘our world’s order…those are Eris.

But there’s another side of Eris, too. Eris is the energy of going to to make a better world. Eris is about changing the world and fighting for that which is right, which has integrity.

The trick with Eris, however, lies in the purpose. Let’s remember – Eris is a dwarf planet, yet. But where it orbits is way, way, way out there in the Kuiper Belt.

 The Kuiper Belt involves a vast area of space beyond Neptune
 and inside that area currently thought of as the very edge of our
solar system - the Oort Cloud.

All those things represented by objects in the Kuiper Belt – defined pretty much as ‘beyond Neptune’ have to do with transpersonal dynamics pertaining to more than just me-myself-I. By definition, these are not individual issues. Kuiper Belt Objects (KBOs) evoke reactions to life. They are life’s processes and surprises good and ugly coming upon us. Undoubtedly the best-known of the KBOs is Pluto. And though surely we’d like to think we have control over life, we don’t – which is why Pluto is connected to the symbolism of death as the experience of life being transformed. Pluto is actually the symbol of conception and death and connected to all which brings us into this world (sex) and those processes which take us out of it (war, murder, death through old age) as well as our efforts to control that (surgery, for instance).

The ‘obsession’ quality we note with Pluto is our wanting to control all these things. That in itself should tell us that we aren’t in actual control.

So it is with Eris. We are not in control of that which Eris represents. Much as we might try to ‘guard’ ourselves from experiences which provoke or startle the living daylights out of us, Eris is that life dynamic which cuts through all our naiveté, all our protection, all our denials, forcing the truth not of the world, but of our own consciousness upon us.

With Eris, wherever we find Eris in the chart, it’s easy to feel self-protective. And since Eris has been in Aries since the latter part of 1921, most people alive today experience Eris very personally.

Yet Eris’ has a positive side. Eris functions to the positive when we work at using what we do or who and what we are for the benefit of others. Some of us – notably those with Eris strongly placed in their chart – say ‘but what about me? when do I get to make me my own priority?’

The answer to that is ‘probably never’...but I'll have to scout around for a chart or two which show how Eris works when sincerely focal. In the interim, though it’s easy enough to want to do, a focus on the Self in the chart of someone with Eris prominently placed will probably wear their ‘connective batteries’ (connective to the world) down, quickly rendering them irrelevant.

Someone who has made it big, who has hit the limelight and gone as far as they want to go? Turing their Eris ‘evocation’ energies to personal uses or pleasures may be a good way to get out of the public eye. But energies never actually go away, and with Eris, just thinking through the myth it seems likely that those energies neglected will in time backfire and cause trouble in our lives.

Currently transiting the latter part of Aries, Eris very distinctly portrays the changing of life and how we can either all be contributing to this world or being changed and molded by that world. Those who think there is any ‘escape’ from the march of modernism are particularly wrong at this particular time. I know a number of people who are still trying to ‘hide’ from the digital age and technology in general. Good luck to them – I think their cause a foolish one, for it will in time corner and suppress them. They are, in essence, volunteering to be marginalized. And few know what marginalization means until it is beyond capacity to get back aboard that ship which has already sailed…in this case without you because you simply refused to get on board.

That said, I understand the challenges of technology. Aquarian in nature and astrologically governed by a headache pair of planets (first Saturn, then Uranus) modern technology has a unique ability to frustrate and upset us. Years ago I was working with a company on the development of accounting systems for motion pictures. When not trying to convey the realities of production to the programmers (I probably should have provided them with popcorn) I spent a lot of time doing tech support and teaching people how to us the software of that time.

My classic statement on such: until you get so frustrated that you want to scream and pitch the computer out the window, you’re probably not quite there.

I recalled this lesson for my own purposes not but about a month ago now while I was learning to format my first eBook. Trust me…my verbal capacity with invectives got quite a workout during those couple of weeks.

But I prevailed. And once I conquered that first issuing-of-a-book, a whole world of self-publishing opened up to me as something I could do. Not that might be possible, but which I CAN now do.

Yes, this will include the famous epic high fantasy you all have heard me talk about. That will go out via Print on Demand (POD) and somewhere in the next couple of months I’ll bite that formatting apple.

All of this is to say that while there is – unquestionably – some sort of genius-intellectual salvation mechanism which only goes off in our brains when we reach the point of personal cataclysm…that’s not Eris. That’s Uranus.

Uranus – a planet which orbits inside the line of Neptune – represents those things which we can master, but which require letting go of our pre-set boundaries, our limits. They may be behavioral, experiential, regarding what we know or have been willing to perceive. They may pertain to our attitudes about social acceptance and our willingness to be a true individual.

With Uranus, we generally have some choice, even though sometimes we say ‘no’ or refuse to make a choice and life thrusts a choice upon us.

 This is a detail from a painting called 'The Mutilation of Uranus by
Saturn' by Giorgio Vasari which in following the Greek creation
myth about the primordial sky god (Ouranus, from whence comes
the planetary name Uranus) being 'deposed" by Saturn...that concept
we call time, reality, consequence, pragmatism, responsibility. 

But that’s not Eris. Eris begins as life thrusting something – some experience, some moment, some realization - upon us. Zak Bagans became a parapsychologist because he encountered a ghost and from there went on to learn about them.

Someday I’ll tell you all (and the rest of the world) how I came to be who I am too. I just have to be able to pay the legal bills to process the manuscript – which is the ‘down’ side of growing up with famous people as family friends.(Never thought about that part of famous families, did ya?'s not all parties and good times, trust me!)

To the point here….when Eris touches our lives - and it happens to us all at some point - taking the disruption and making something useful or positive from it is key. And the more that ‘something’ you make touches others – maybe more gently than you were touched, but touches them nonetheless…the more you turn Eris’ energy to the positive.

That’s why Eris as (for instance) a social reformer holds such potential for good. Anywhere where you fix things for others, where you take the evocative or emotionally unsettling and use it to help others understand or to fix something which is harming others at any level – that’s Eris to the good.

And when Eris functions to the positive, like fellow KBO Huya, it evokes a positive response which empowers, enriches or supports you.

With Eris going retrograde at 22 Aries, where we are weak, where we have been unwilling to carry through on our tasks – all our irresponsibility gets uncovered, exposed and pretty much shoved in our face. With Saturn still very much in opposition to Eris (at 23 Libra) there will be a tendency to project blame on others, on circumstances, on whatever.

It probably won’t wash. And because it won’t wash, we will all of us be confronted (to whatever degree) with where we have been humoring ourselves thinking ‘oh, they’ll go along with it’ when in the end, they won’t. And in the end, we will pay the price not for ‘their’ intolerance, but for our lack of willingness to work (Saturn) at the thing which we find emotionally difficult to swallow (Eris). That may simply amount to not liking to be told what to do. Or maybe it’s that you don’t want to change how you go about doing something or the ‘charge’ you levy for doing it.

There are a million-zillion ways this Eris (opposition Saturn) station can manifest. The important thing to remember is that whatever happens now, the core of the emotional reaction is pointing at you. Specifically, at some vulnerability in your character. Maybe you don’t like being or working alone. (Maybe you need to learn how to do that?) Maybe you don’t like having to change the way you ‘always’ have done something (Maybe you need to recognize the times are changing and/or have changed?) Maybe…

….maybe, maybe, maybe.

So many maybes. One life to get them straight in.

The other half of this moment is – as mentioned – a New Moon. And that makes this the PERFECT time to learn better. As this post goes up (July 15th) Mercury has just gone retrograde (see previous post), meaning that the next couple of weeks are a really good time for cleaning house – mental or otherwise.

And yes, it is likely that for those who are dilly-dallying around about things, others will do some of the housecleaning for you. Or to you, depending.

Again, don’t blame them. Take responsibility for how you are perceived. We can coax, con, soothe, explain some of the time. In the end, actions speak the bottom line. Both Saturn and Eris are in cardinal, action/demonstrative signs. If you want others to think differently of you, change you and prove that you’re different.

With this New Moon occurring at 26 Cancer, we know there is some sort of ‘basis for proceeding’ in the mix now.

 Positioned at the bottom of the wheel of the 'natural' zodiac (the
 zodiac as placed around the horoscope wheel starting with
 Aries and ending with Pisces), Cancer reveals itself as the sign
at the very base of the chart - thus its associations with our
foundations as individuals (our childhood, home, nationality, culture)
as well as any plans we have in life. If you think of the chart wheel
as a building the meaning here becomes clear: without sound
foundations, all which is built ON those foundations does not
stand firm. This idea supports exploration of childhood and
child-mentality through psychology as surely as it supports our
need for 'down time' (moments in which to be childlike, even
child-ish!) in life...and the need to have a sense that you 'belong' a family, in a people, as part of a national identity
...and why astrologers do well to examine where Cancer falls in any
chart, PLUS the nature and stutus of the 4th house in order to
understand challenges and positives of functionality.

Cancer is the first of the water signs. Known in virtually every spiritual and metaphysical tradition as an emblem of emotionality, water is also the basic ‘giver of life,’ accounting for Cancer as the sign of family, our nationality and culture, our childhood and our basic ‘life plan.’

With this New Moon occurring at 26 Cancer, we are given to know – from the fact that this is a 3rd decan degree (between 20 and 29 degrees) – that we are getting ‘feedback’ now. We are learning what it means to have our background. Or to be of our nationality. Or whether our ‘life plan’ is functional or not.

For those who are having difficulties, the Mercury retrograde weeks between July 15 and August 8 (when Mercury goes direct) will be an excellent time to make plans, develop methods and ways of reaching your goals and finding our everything from who can help you to how things can work. Business or personal, this New Moon adds to things by asking that you recognize what your values are against what the world may think of those values.

Just understand one thing: considering that Eris’ turnabout is happening in virtual tandem with this New Moon, you may be tempted to blame difficulties on others. And no, life isn’t fair. But how you respond to life and what your plans become given that life is at this point what it is…? That’s what will now evolve over this next lunation.

Specific to the lore on the degree of this New Moon, it deals with artists and artistry as well as questions of luxury. The term ‘artistry’ is not confined to the arts here. Rather, it’s a reference to the way you go about doing whatever you do. Likewise, while ‘luxury’ may be about material goods, it may also be a reference to the ‘luxury’ of not trying or not living up to standards (which would be very Eris-Saturn), “resting on one’s laurels” (thinking you don’t have to try any more and/or can do what you want now, which plays right into the Saturn/Eris scenario) and the ‘luxury’ of abdicating responsibility to others.

Again, I refer you back to our conversation about Eris…or Saturn/Eris as a particular.

The Sabian Symbol for this degree is ‘A VIOLENT STORM IN A CANYON FILLED WITH EXPENSIVE HOMES’ which astrologer Dane Rudhyar considers to be a ‘confrontation with social upheaval, demanding the reconsideration of static values.’

Whether or not you deal with things which are literally ‘expensive’ there are items and issues in life which we consider precious – and to lose them would be very ‘expensive’ to our lives. As much as the literal translation of this degree, the emotional concept will now be in play. Health, love, respect, trust, regard, proximity…everybody is facing some sort of change. Those of us least used to change will find it harder to face than others and where resources would seem protective, life now cuts through all protections.

That would be the Eris part of things.

Especially if your natal chart has a position between…say,…20 and 27 of any sign, you’re in the celestial shaker box.

And then there are those of you who have already noticed how Eris at 22 Aries is in aspect to this New Moon at 26 Cancer…


Yes, this is a total configuration. And that, my friends, would be why no matter what time zone you’re in…why these two events would seem to be tied together.

There are many interesting points in this diagram with one we haven’t touched on yet being Kalypso and Photographica opposing the New Moon. This would tend to be something of the ‘but how will it look?’ sort of thing.

But it bears recalling that there are not only structural rules for using astrological solar systemics to sort out what’s personal from what’s experiential, there’s a size thing too.

Yes, in astrology, size matters. I’m not sure it matters in other places as much as some think it does, but when it comes to celestial objects, yes – size matters. Not only does greater physical size generally translate into the symbolism having ‘greater mass’ and ‘more weight’ in our lives, but there is that physics thing that once a celestial object reaches a given size, it will tend to ‘spin itself’ into becoming a planetoid or for the lucky few, a planet.

(Yes, I’m using the term ‘lucky’ here rather abstractly.)

In those terms, the ‘gravity’ (gravitas?) of the situation plainly goes to the New Moon. Earth’s satellite – our Luna Moon – is pretty dinky in planetary terms. Yet it is close! But more to the point, there isn’t anything about our solar system which comes close to being as big as the Sun.

 Solar System: Size (only) to Scale

To make this even plainer, here’s a link to another web page which does a really good job of visually demonstrating how big solar system objects are with respect to each other...

Essentially, the structure of this moment is a t-square with the possibility of it being a Grand Cross in particular for those who have something positioned in the 20-27 degrees of Capricorn.

(Yes…that’s me raising my hand. I have a date with my Chiron.)(...shudder...)

What’s the difference? A t-square is incredibly annoying. It’s like throwing yourself against a wall which impassively resists your every assault.

But t-squares do have ‘solutions.’ And that ‘solution’ is to get over your big bad self! The ‘t’ in the t-square (in this case the New Moon) is the thing which is standing in your way. You want it. Your ego is wrapped up in the ‘you’ of it and not focused (sufficiently) on the quality or ‘end purpose’ of what you’re talking about.

Life, in other words, is not rejecting YOU…it’s rejecting your approach. Your insistence that life listen to you or that what you’re up to is about you. Or dependent on you. Something.

For those who do have a planet, axis point, nodal point or even a prominent asteroid, TNO or such (if you have one you know about it) in this 20-27 Capricorn department, your issue is a bit different. You’re in the Grand Cross quandary, the simplest version of which is ‘too much to do and not enough time to do it in.’

Answer: prioritize. No, that doesn’t fix the totality of what you need to do, but prioritizing by actual need and not emotional want (or pressure) will go a long way towards helping you think things through and work through whatever long laundry list you now have before you.

That all this happens under Mercury retrograde is actually in favor of the ‘laundry list’ folks. Mercury retrograde is the perfect time for catching up, for paring down, for editing out, for getting things assembled – with all the details duly checked out – in order to move ahead once Mercury goes direct (on August 8).

For those with no planets being affected, you may well be bystanders to others who are dealing with ‘image issues’ of whatever kind. Whether this is focal in your life or not, there are positive lessons to be learned about awareness of Self in connection to, and with regards to others.

And that…is just about all I have to say about all that.
Well, maybe. But I do have to go check my laundry – and the list, which may have just gotten washed.

So happy Eris Lunation all…may we all become wiser for our experiences!


  1. Celestial Shaker Box! I love that! When I opened you post Boots and saw the title, I thought well brace yourself because this particular day is truly a fate full day for me.

    I say that because my Moon is so very wrapped up with all the celestial players having natal moon conjunct saturn and S.R. moon conjuct Eris and folks that is my last day of work with a particular institution.
    Long story short, I intended to bow out quietly as I have upset many powerful people by speaking truth to power and "disrupting" standard chain of command operations for which I was reprimanded and told never to write or say such things again. I gave the standard four week notice of intent to terminate and there was silence from everyone for the first couple weeks, as I know they are relieved to have me gone, but now, Oh shock (Uranus)!the very people who betrayed me and 'threw me under the bus' have decided to have a grand "send off" party pot luck lunch with all departments on my very last day. Folks this is 'Never' done for someone who 'disrupts' those in power by telling the truth of what they did.

    I was aware that this was the day of the new moon and thought how appropriate, but thanks to Boots and her blog I am seeing so many deeper ramifications to celestial events in my own chart, not to mention the T square with Uranus, Pluto and Mars making a grand cross with my natal Uranus at 8 Cancer.

    One thing I am sure of, it will be a day of surprises and a new beginning for me.
    Thanks again Boots! It's shake up time!

  2. I'm in the middle of doing a lot of work with Eris...evidently there's a general interest out there to hear more about it and how it works both natally and by transit.

    Who am I not to pitch in, right?

    There are many situations undergoing changes at the moment. Some are of the 'this has been building a long time' and some are more of the 'shocking revelation' type.

    People tend to think that getting your chains rattled once in a while is a bad thing, but the more I study Eris, the more I tend to think it's a hugely positive symbol as long as we learn something more about ourselves and about how life works through whatever comes to pass.

    Here's to a fabulous send-off adventures indeed lie ahead - for many of us!