Solar eclipses - what time is valid?

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Jim Eshelman
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Solar eclipses - what time is valid?

Post by Jim Eshelman » Sun Sep 22, 2019 3:35 pm

Which time for an eclipse is valid? Do we have any evidence one way or the other? Whatever opinion we have, why do we hold it?

A solar eclipse is a super-duper New Moon, one where Moon is close enough to the ecliptic to cover the Sun entirely at the time of New Moon. Other times of the year, Sun and Moon reach exact ecliptical conjunction every 29 days or so, but they are not also conjunct in latitude.

The time of totality of an eclipse is not the time same as the time of the Sun-Moon conjunction in longitude. For example, the August 21, 2017 solar eclipse reached totality at 1:25 PM CDT when Sun and Moon (0°03' apart in longitude) were both within a degree of Midheaven over Houston where, five days later, Hurricane Harvey struck. It's human nature that, when we see something like this,we think the eclipse acted as an accelerant for activities under that band of longitude (and elsewhere that it had unusual positional importance). But - just to make the question clear - the New Moon as usually measured (the Sun-Moon conjunction) was exact at 1:30 PM, about five minutes later, when Sun and Moon were a degree farther from MC.

Based on Harvey, one would be inclined to accept the moment of totality as the critical event. For that moment, Sun and Moon were exactly over the meridian of longitude of Houston and Mars was within 2° of square the Houston Ascendant. Sounds pretty good for a solitary example.

Today, however, I came across an example that might lead to the opposite conclusion: On July 2, 2019, the exact day of a solar eclipse, lightning struck a Jim Beam warehouse in Kentucky about 11:30 PM igniting enough barreled Bourbon to fill over six million bottles. The fire took days to extinguish and, on the first night, was reported to be burning so hot that windows melted in nearby houses and the entire front of the house right across the street melted. The one positive was that people on hand said it was the sweetest smelling fire they could remember. :)

I originally wrote here that there was no clear involvement from the eclipse for that event. However, that may have been because I was looking at the wrong time.

The warehouse was at 38N08'47", 84W50'31". The solar eclipse peaked at 3:23 PM that afternoon. The New Moon (exact Moon-Sun conjunction) was exact at 3:16 PM, seven minutes earlier.

Either chart is at least OK, since it highlights a Mars-Uranus square - fire and lightning, right? - paired with a nearby Mercury. Astrologers who pay more attention to houses than angles, though, might think that Mars had gone too far off-track by the time the eclipse was total. Astrologers who pay more attention to angles will at least see that Mars had moved a little farther away.

To be specific, at the time of the New Moon Mars was 1°40' past MC (into the 9th house). Mercury was 0°42' before MC (i.e., 10th house side). Uranus (5° from square Mars in longitude, less than 2° from square Mercury) was 0°54' past Westpoint. Mars just past MC and Uranus just past WP (both being angles marked on the celestial equator) draws our attention to a 0°49' Mars-Uranus square in right ascension.

That's pretty good for lightning starting a mammoth fire!

It's a little different in the chart for the moment of the eclipse was total. Mars was 4°21`' past MC. Mercury was closest to an angle (1°03' past MC). Uranus was 2°38' past Westpoint, pushing the limits of my willingness to count it at all. The one gain, though, is that Mars is now within 1°02' of square Ascendant, which at least shows the big fire well enough even if it misses the chance to show the lightning strike.

These differences are small, except that some of them make a difference between whether to count a placement or not (and if not this event, then in others yet to be uncovered: the question is in play every time there is an eclipse).

What is our opinion on this matter and, perhaps more important, why do we have the opinion? Is there clear evidence that, on balance, tells us one thing or the other?
Jim Eshelman
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Re: Solar eclipses - what time is valid?

Post by SteveS » Mon Sep 23, 2019 6:37 am

I use to do a-lot work with eclipses and read a couple of books on em, but I have never been able to draw very much symbolic importance with eclipse charts, mundanely But, I do know this: full moon & new moon in return/natal charts are very important, but have never been able to weigh any differences if they happen to be eclipses. But I will always keep my mind open pertaining to their possible symbolic importance.

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