The Orca Whale
Orcinus Orca, the proper name, is derived from Orcus (Latin) the god of the underworld. The Orca is the largest member of the dolphin family. They were originally called whale killers (not killer whales) so named because they were seen to eat other mammals.
Image Credit: NOAA's Ark
Although the astrology of Orcus is just starting to be explored, from the stellar alignments at the time of its discovery on Feb 19, 2004 in late sidereal Cancer, and its path deep through Hydra and passing under the auspices of the Head of the Lion, we can see that Orcus is working with the theme of exploration, of uncovering a blueprint or map that leads to a new picture, a new reality; to emerge from the belief structures and constructs of mind that are merely based upon the convenience of our collective consensus. In doing so, Orcus may force us to confront the fear or loneliness encountered when leaving the apparent safety of our past consensus of reality. Orcus may be helping us to uncover secret paths obscured by the sands of time, perhaps even oaths we made long ago to enter into the depths of unexplored territory, into new realms of consciousness, that lead us to a new law of life—eventually to a law that is in integrity to Heart—when Orcus conjoins Regulus, heart of the Lion, in early 2009. By 2014, Orcus conjoins the stars of the sextant, where we can plot a new course, take a new tack based on the new vertical alignment established within self.
Mythological Orcus, being similar to the Greek underworld god Hyades, would seem to have a Pluto like character; and in addition, being associated with water. The Roman Orcus is said to be the god of oaths and the punisher of those who purger, apparently an extremist, being either terribly harsh or extremely gentle. The association of Orcus with oaths is quite curious, as we will see later in this article, the issue of living our "soul oaths" is a fundamental facet of the new 32-year Saturn-Orcus Synodic Cycle.
Additionally, the orientation of Orcus's orbital plane is such that its North Node (where in its orbit, Orcus moves from south to north of the ecliptic plane) conjoins the Gate of God at 5° sidereal Sag. Its South Node conjoins the Gate of Man at 5° sidereal Gemini. These two points mark the intersection of the galactic plane and the ecliptic plane—the galactic equatorial axis, which is the fixed and primary axis of Earth's Precessional Cross. This is an additional and significant clue as to Orcus' role in our lives—here suggesting direct involvement with evolutionary matters of the soul collective on Earth. And, making its presence know in Hydra, the underwater snake, suggests powerful transcendent currents may be stirring, perhaps even in the oceans of the world.
Notice the path of Orcus in the star chart below: Orcus (at its south node) makes passage across the Gate of Man in 1954 as it moves through sidereal Gemini and then submerges through Cancer directly into the head of Hydra and through Hydra's body—where it was discovered. By 2014, Orcus conjoins the navigator's Sextant, on Hydra's back.
The sextant is a navigational instrument used to determine the "vertical" position (angular distance) of the sun, moon or stars from the horizon. The sextant reveals the need to reorient self so we know our position so we can plot our course, and take a new tack on our journeys in life. On a greater scale, this can be in regard to changing allegiance of our energies from the outer world, self-sacrificing to diversionary forces or currents in the world around us, to the vertical integrity of our inner soul / source directive and truth. On a mundane level this can be in regard to changing our fundamental approach or path in life, to establish our position so we can plot or take a new tack toward our goals.
Here is the impetus to navigate through the diversionary dogmas and belief structures common to early Cancer, and the dramatic ego-driven powers common to Leo, and re-align with the fundamental spiritual / galactic evolutionary currents embodied by our southern Argo Navis—the path of our souls.
The Path of Orcus & the Saturn-Orcus Synods
Star Chart Sidereal-Heliocentric
The last 32-year Saturn-Orcus synodic cycle began in Oct 1975 conjoining Procyon, the 8th brightest star in the sky, on the cusp of Gemini-Cancer.
Procyon, the faithful hound of the Gemini Twins, conjoins Pollux the ambassador. As the Babylonian "Kakkab Paldara," Procyon is "Star of the Crossing—of the Water Dog"—the crossing being an association to the nearby "Gate of Man" (5° sidereal Gemini) of Earth's Precessional Cross, the current ecliptical location of Earth's North Pole in the ~25,000-year precessional Cycle of the Precessional Cross.
The previous Saturn-Orcus 32-year synodic cycle started in mid-1943
in sidereal Taurus conjoining enterprising Rigel of Orion.
Procyon is one of the five stars creating the "Egyptian X" with Betelgeuse of Orion, Naos of the Argo, Phaet of Columba the Dove, and with the center star Sirius—the Great World Teacher. In relation to Sirius, the Dog Star, of Canis Major, Procyon is the little dog star. The desert Arabs knew Sirius and Procyon as "Al Ahawat al Suhail"—the (radiant, glorious, and beautiful) sisters of Canopus: thus recognizing all three to be associated with the fulfillment of souls' greater evolutionary purpose—overseen and directed by Canopus, the helmsman of Argo Navis.
In classic astrology, Procyon portends wealth, renown, and good fortune. Procyon inspires our allegiance to a greater cause, purpose, or faction. Procyon inspires us to ally with another or with a group to achieve a greater purpose than we could achieve alone.
With giant Saturn hanging in the blackness and sheltering Cassini from the sun's blinding glare, the spacecraft viewed the rings as never before.
This marvelous panoramic view was created by combining a 165 images taken by the Cassini wide-angle camera over nearly three hours on Sept. 15, 2006. The mosaic images were acquired as the spacecraft drifted in the darkness of Saturn's shadow for about 12 hours, allowing a multitude of unique observations of the microscopic particles that comprise Saturn's faint rings.
Image & Caption Credit: NASA/JPL/Space Science Institute
Saturn and Orcus begin a new 32-year synodic cycle in early sidereal Leo on Aug 20, 2007, in the midst of the Aug 12, 2007 lunar cycle. Orcus moving much slower than Saturn remains south of the ecliptic in Hydra, just past Alphard of Hydra the solitary one, which it conjoined in 2005. Saturn resides Leo, under aupices of the Head of the Lion, just before it conjoins with Regulus, Heart of the Lion.
Several stars articulate the theme of the first five degrees of sidereal Leo and of this new 32-year Saturn-Orcus synodic cycle: Alpha Pictoris and Subra, the Paw of the Lion, which mark the cusp of sidereal Cancer-Leo; Alpha & Beta Pyxidis; Alphard of Hydra; Suhail Al Muhlif on the Sail of the Argo; Pup-A Supernova Remnant; and Adhafera and Al Jabha, the mane and forehead of the Lion (these are the main stars conjoining the Saturn-Orcus Synod; and then we come to Algieba on the mane of the Lion and Regulus, Heart of the Lion (at 5° sidereal Leo).
Let us explore the individual themes of these stellar entries to get a feel for the overall character of early sidereal Leo:
Subra, marking the end of sidereal Cancer, is the paw of the Lion impressed in the desert sand. Subra is of prints, tracks, plans, codices and ancient maps—clues to hidden trails and paths obscured by the sands of time. Subra indicates a discovery process is at hand, one leading to the secret chambers, entryways, even to liftoff sites of the gods—places hidden from ordinary view. Simply, Subra asks that we dig, explore, uncover, and find a new way to navigate the passage that leads to living from the integrity and passion of out hearts, which Regulus embodies.
Synthesizing with Subra is the primary star of the very southern constellation Pictoris, the Painter's Easel. Alpha Pictoris indicates a picture or scenario is emerging from the æthers. This is a picture assembling itself as we break trail in our discovery process. Alpha Pictoris asks us to see the pathway or entryway emerging out of the mist covering an abyss, in the rock of a mountain side, in the billowing clouds blown by the wind, in the leaves fallen upon the ground, or simply in our mind's inner eye. Alpha Pictoris asks us to creatively assemble the signs, to read the message, to see the coalescing spirit substance yet to become, to paint a new picture, a new life.
Argo Navis, the ship in the mythical story of Jason and the Argonauts, sails in the southern heavens along the Galactic Equator. Stars of the Argo are of our greater galactic purpose and soul mission—of seeking our evolutionary fulfillment, of fulfilling our soul purpose on Earth. Pyxidis, a sub-constellation of the Argo, is the Crow's Nest (also compass) of the galactic ship, from which we scout for distant land. Alpha and Beta Pyxidis enter the ecliptic just into sidereal Leo, conjoining Subra, the paw of the Lion, and Alpha Pictoris.
Pyxidis asks us to peer beyond what is visible, beyond the common world, and to navigate through potential problems or obstacles upon our exploration. Pyxidis inspires us to find the map obscured in the sand, to see the picture waiting to emerge from the obscuring fog into visible sight, and to take an abode, place, vantage, or perspective from which we can see and find distant lands.
Pyxidis indicates a discovery process is at had, one that requires patience, foresight, and perceptual attentiveness. Although this often is a lonely process, it is one serving our greater evolutionary journey, and as well, the journeys of our colleagues and companions. Pyxidis has little interest in the superfluous pursuits of the common world, always seeking new ground, looking forward, gazing ahead through time, to see through the present limitations into the depths of what can yet become.
The Owl Nebula, M97 (Planetary Nebula) Image Credit: European Southern Observatory
Pyxidis asks us to be a master observer. Present with our attention, insatiably on the lookout, we must be forever attentive to our greater journey, plotting the course, seeking the path to realize the dream of our highest potential destiny.
Also conjoining Subra and friends is the Owl Nebula M97, which lies north in heavens in Ursa Major. The Owl Nebula is one of the largest planetary nebulas. It has a faint central star and two dark recessed regions that give the nebula its name. Nebulas in general create a type of facade or fog that colors the zodiakal theme. The Owl Nebula suggest we use wisdom and night vision to see that which is obscured by the dogmatic veils that we uphold with our existing belief structures, or those created by prominent ego-based individuals and world powers. Here lies the need to see through the existing picture of our reality, and to use creative (third-eye) vision to allow alternative realms and possibilities to emerge into our awareness. Only then can we step into the apparent abyss where a hidden bridge awaits—to step upon the Path of de Lion.
These first three stars, Subra, Alpha Pictoris and Alpha Pyxidis, reveal what we are doing (being asked to do) as we enter sidereal Leo. They are not the principal Saturn-Orcus synod stars, but they are in tight orb and add significant context to this next 32-year synodic theme.
Alphard, Alpha Hydra of the Water Snake, is next in our early Leo contributors. Alphard is the Solitary One. Alphard can indicate a lone path, even having self-exiled oneself from the comfort and security of the accepted and agreed upon consensus of the masses; to risk our reputations, our work, and our lives for greater horizons, which allows us to walk paths we would not otherwise pursue. Alphard asks us to dive deep within, into the unseen, and to emerge with that which we seek.
Interstellar Explosion: A full view of the Puppis A supernova remnant seen in X-rays by ROSAT. The inset shows a high-resolution view of a small portion of the remnant seen by the Chandra X-ray observatory. Different colors depict unique X-ray energies.
Image Credit: Chandra: NASA/CXC/GSFC/U.Hwang et al.; ROSAT: NASA/GSFC/S.Snowden et al.
The Suhail stars of Velorum, on the sail of the Argo, are always indicative of refined subtle energies or currents at work that function at the level of the soul’s greater evolutionary journey—those transcendent to the dramatics of the terrestrial incarnational world.
"Suhail, among the Persians, is synonymous for wisdom; as in the Al Anwar i Suhaili, the Lights of Canopus. Also a personal title taken in Arabia as a symbol for what is brilliant, glorious and beautiful." (Allen) Suhail al Muhlif is Suhail of the Oath.
Conjoining is the Pup-A Supernova Remnant of Puppis on the stern of the Argo, which enters the ecliptic just before Regulus. Both entries add a transcendent galactic (soul-level) context to the conjoining theme of Hydra's Alphard of Hydra and the stars creating the Head of the Lion.
Suhail al Muhlif and Pup-A are indicative of sacred oaths made and set in motion long ago, of soul level missions set out upon that transcend one's incarnational sojourn—missions to open doorways and portals which allow us to reach for and achieve soul's greater purpose. The soul oaths taken are to maintain our personal integrity to our souls' directive, to see to our evolutionary fulfillment in regard to our purposes in the world—to be of the Kahi Nub of Canopus, meaning the Golden Earth—to become what is beautiful and glorious. Pup-A also provides the drive or motivation to demonstrably live our soul oaths, to stand forth and achieve our purposes in life.
Orcus being the god of oaths and of those who have forsaken theirs, along with Saturn, who demands we confront our fears and do what we need to, conjoining the star of soul oaths, Suhail al Muhlif, seems to be a blatent and powerful statement.
The head of the Lion is composed of several stars and actually extends from Algenubi, the Eye of the Lion in late sidereal Cancer, into early sidereal Leo with Algeibia conjoing Regulus, the Heart of the Lion. Of course the Lion is looking from Leo back across the cusp into Cancer (much like those on a performing arts stage would be looking toward their audience.
Adhafera and Al Jabhah are parts of the mane and forehead of the Lion and conjoin the themes of Alphard, Suhail Al Muhlif, and the Pup-A Supernova Remnant. Here we might think more in terms of the brain or mind of the Lion, of how the Leo thinks—perhaps with a sense of aloneness but with confident audacity.
Often time the work of such adventures and trail-blazers is rarely seen until others later follow or make popular that which they have found, or until time itself brings the future into the present awareness of the masses. These way-showers are sometime long gone, continuing over the next horizon, rarely to be seen. They often are not recognized for their tremendous, relentless and lonely pursuits, but the roads and doorways they open pave the way for others to come, and allow future generations’ evolutionary unfoldment. Others do however step into the limelight, onto stage, demonstrating their unique pursuits and true hearts' passion. They go for gold and claim the crown.
Often time, they live in a time warp (a quality of the Puppis-A supernova remnant), detuned from what is occurring around them, so self-consumed in their own pursuits, even such that the affairs of others seem but a din around them. But their true gift is inspiration for those who yearn to find their own Heart (diamond) of the Lion.
These latter discussed stars; Alphard of Hydra, Suhail Al Muhlif, the Puppis-A Supernova Remnant; Adhafera and Al Jabha of Leo are the principal stars forming our new 32-year Saturn-Orcus theme. Key concepts to consider are: soul oaths; living true to self rather than to the momentum of antiquated dogmatic mass consciousness; breaking trail and leading in new ways true to heart. The essence here is aabout molding individuality and presenting that indivudality visibly as contributers leading to the essence embodied by Regulus, Heart of the Lion.
Regulus, Alpha Leo, completes the articulation of the first five degrees of sidereal Leo. Regulus is "Chief or King of the Four Royal Stars," (Regulus Fomalhaut, Aldebaran, and Antares). Throughout antiquity Regulus was associated with royalty and kings (the colors royal blue and gold). Its name is given as “the Regulus” or “the Rex,” meaning the “Law Giver.” Regulus is considered the governing king of the heavens for several reasons. It lies almost exactly upon the ecliptic, thus, once a year around Aug 22-23, during Earth's orbit around the sun, the sun occults Regulus. Residing at about 5 degrees sidereal Leo, Regulus is the only one of the four royal stars prominently aspecting the Precessional Cross (the Gate of God at 5° Sag and the Gate of Man at 5° Gemini.), both in longitude and in latitude). The Rex is therefore an administrative seat, a foundational star insuring integrity and order.
On the personal level, Regulus is about "vertical integrity," that is, living true to self. This means walking in confidence and with self-respect, aligned with the truth in our hearts, in thought, word, and deed. Our personal integrity, our inner vertical attunement, must precede any horizontal, humanitarian participation in the world (Leo’s opposite Aquarian pole). Without this inner integrity we become self-sacrificing, entrapped in a sympathetic resonance of dance, giving self away at the cost of our hearts' truth. This perpetuates discord and dysfunction for self and for others because we are simply living a lie. Only by living our hearts' truths do we provide opportunity for others to also stand in integrity and live theirs.
Concurrently, while the new 32-year Saturn Orcus synodic cycle begins, from Earth's view (a geocentric perspective), we experience the Venus retrograde cycle in early sidereal Leo conjoining Saturn and Orcus. In the midst of the Venus retrograde, on Aug 18, Venus and Earth will begin their new synodic cycle as well.
This star chart shows the Venus retrograde path and the Venus conjunctions with Saturn and Orcus—from Earth's view (geocentric).
The Lion faces west, with its head crossing over into sidereal Cancer—the stars Algieba (the mane), Adhafera (on the crest of the mane), Rasalas (the crown), and Algenubi (the eye) all compose the head. The star Regulus is the Heart of the Lion. The star Subra, just south of the ecliptic in late sidereal Cancer, is the Lion's paw.
Venus first conjoins Saturn on July 1, just before Venus starts its retrograde (the first of three Venus-Saturn triggers) under the auspices of Algenubi, Eye of the Lion.
Venus begins its retrograde on July 27 and then conjoins Saturn for their second trigger under the auspices of Adhafera, the Mane of the Lion.
Venus returns direct on Sept 8, 2007 and then conjoins Saturn for their third trigger in mid-Leo on Oct 14, over the Sextant, and under Alula, the hind foot of the Great Bear.
Venus conjoins Orcus during the Venus retrograde period as well as Saturn. Orcus moves much slower than Saturn, thus the Venus Orcus conjunctions occur close together in the ecliptic. The first occurs on July 10 conjoining Alphard of Hydra, the second occurs on Aug 12, and the third occurs on Oct 7, 2007 under the auspices of Regulus, Heart of the Lion.
Venus-Saturn: July 1, 2007 | July 27, 2007 | Sept 8, 2007
Venus-Orcus: July 10, 2007 | Aug 12, 2007 | Oct 7, 2007
Saturn-Orcus: Aug 20, 2007
Looking from the Earth, we have retrograde Venus, the Sun, Saturn and Orcus all conjoining.
Looking from the Sun in one direction, we have Venus and Earth conjoining, and in the opposite direction, we have Saturn and Orcus conjoining.
On Aug 18, 2007, the very significant 584-day Earth-Venus Synodic cycle starts in the midst of the Venus retrograde, when from Earth's view, retrograde Venus conjoins the Sun. This is when Earth and Venus are seen to line up from the Sun's view (the heliocentric conjunction) on the cusp of sidereal Capricorn/Aquarius conjoining Sadr, the Heart of the Cygnus. The new Earth-Venus 584-day synodic cycle theme defined by the Capricorn/Aquarius cuspal location is presented in the Aug 12, 2007 lunar cycle. Several other dynamic and coinciding events occur from the New Moon of Aug 12 through the First Quarter Moon of August 20, make this period of profound significance.
The Earth Venus synod occurring on the cusp of sidereal Capricorn-Aquarius is opposite the Cancer- Leo cusp shown in the above geocentric chart where the Venus retrograde is seen to occur from Earth. There are four Venus synodic cycles occurring between the two Venus Transit synodic cycles that start in 2004 and 2012. This Earth-Venus synod of Aug 18, 2007 is the second of those four. Learn more about Venus, Venus cycles, and the 2004 / 2012 Venus Transits.
The Earth-Venus synodic cycle (Aug 18, 2007) starts just slightly before the Saturn-Orcus 32-year synodic cycle (Aug 20, 2007). Thus, the start of the new 584-day Earth-Venus cycle and the start of the new 32-year Saturn-Orcus synodic cycle synchronize (occurring in a very tight orb) but they occur in opposite parts of the heavens (in heliocentric opposition).
The new Earth-Venus synodic cycle theme thus extends into the far more embracing context of the principle 32-year Saturn-Orcus theme. The Earth-Venus cycle's theme can be thought of as an opening prelude, bringing perspective to the opening period of the much longer Saturn-Orcus theme. The new Earth-Venus synodic cycle may make the far vaster 32-year Saturn Orcus cycle intimately personal and palpable—to get it at the heart level. Perhaps this is needed as Orcus, although Pluto like, seems to express a quiet profundity, almost unnoticed as it serves us to get in touch with our deeper soul essence and purpose.
One one hand, we have a new cycle directly realted to the heart (thymus, immune system), living from the heart, art, rapture and beauty in life (in the context of the new Venus theme set by Sadr of Cygnus); while on the other hand, we have the Saturn-Orcus theme presented above, one that is working at a very deep subsconcious and foundational level of our souls regarding our responisbility to break new trail and to live from the individual truths of our souls—oaths taken, perhaps long ago.
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©2007 Nick Anthony Fiorenza, All Rights Reserved