Gaza: The Quality of Mercy
After I gave birth to my first daughter in a London hospital, I shared a room with three other women – a Palestinian, an Israeli, and a London Iranian.
There was some awkward negotiating around drips, cots, nurses and nappies. But the presence of tiny new babies creates a certain amount of harmony even among the most unlikely groups. We were all mothers.
Those babies are nine year olds now. I wonder how scared the Israeli boy and the Palestinian girl are tonight.
Here is Israel’s national chart set for the moment that David Ben Gurion said, “The State of Israel has arisen,” on May 14, 1948. It gives Israel Scorpio Rising, so the chart rulers are Pluto and Mars in Leo in the 10th house: the Lion of Judah. This is a fiery chart, and fixed too.
Here are some of key current transits.
Fighting Mars has just ignited Israel’s dangerous natal Jupiter-Mars trine in the fire signs. Four years ago, last time there was a war in Gaza, Mars was making exactly the same transit. Mars goes round the Zodiac every two years, so its transits are not always so significant, but what makes this more dangerous is the way Mars acts as a trigger to the outer planets, connecting them to the Israeli chart.
Mars has now moved into Capricorn, which is a far cooler placement, but he runs straight into a square to transiting Uranus in gung-ho Aries and later in the week a conjunction with dark Pluto transiting through heavy sign Capricorn. Not good.
Mars will oppose Israel’s natal Venus at 4° on November 22. One might like to think there’s a chance for a ceasefire there, but it’s never proved to be the case in the past. In fact, in January 2009 it marked the beginning of the ground invasion of Operation Lead Cast.
The other planet in Israel’s chart which is at 4° is the Moon, right on the MC in Leo. In a mundane chart, the Moon represents the people. Israel is arguably one of the most directly ruled country’s in the world with its flexible democracy. It also has the world’s most impressive people’s army, the Israeli reservists, who have been mobilised this week. This is symbolised by the Moon applying to that militant stellium of Pluto-Mars-Saturn.
That Leo Moon is just about to be skewered for a few days by direct quincunxes from Mars in Capricorn and Chiron in Pisces simultaneously. This formation is called a Yod, the Hebrew word for hand or the pointer used to read the Torah. This could be seen as a choice between force (Mars) and healing (Chiron).
|The hamsa or hand of Fatima is|
a protective amulet used
across the region.
Transiting Uranus, the planet of shock, is also at 4°, squaring Israel’s natal Venus in Cancer and trining the Moon. Pluto has, of course, also opposed Venus in the past few years. The question is: what does Venus mean in the chart of Israel. The mothers of the country? Who last year organised the biggest civil protest in Israel’s short history. Or is it Israel’s potential for peace, which seems to be shattering (again) before our eyes.
While Pluto has been opposing Israel’s Venus over the last four years there have been no peace talks. One commentator described this as a vacuum: how very Plutonian.
So Israel’s sensitive natal Moon and Venus are both being rocked by powerful energy right now.
But those are not the only significant transits. Neptune and Chiron in Pisces are trining Israel’s Scorpio Ascendant and the country’s Venus in Cancer creating a Water Grand Trine. There is a word that comes to mind for this geometry and that is compassion. It seems an odd word to use when we hear news of the disaster unfolding in the Gaza Strip, but there it is.
Not all potentials in a chart are realised. But there is potential here for forgiveness. Neptune and Chiron together are truly healing, washing away hurt; combining with Venus, the planet of harmony, they could be beautiful. The other side of this energy is grief, though. Chiron and Neptune in Pisces are also about flowing tears, and bleeding wounds.
That Water Grand Trine is reinforced by Saturn in Scorpio. Saturn has just gone into Scorpio, crossing over Israel’s Ascendant. Saturn in the first house corresponds with a period of sobering self-examination. In a personal chart, it shows at time when someone takes on greater responsibility and matures in some way. There is often a rite of passage. This Saturn is currently at a hard angle to Israel’s Moon. In the past, this has been accompanied by a hardening of attitudes in Israel towards the Palestinians. But as you can see, things are very different now astrologically, just as they are here on earth since the Arab Spring.