The astrology of soul-mates/Why and how it all goes wrong

The astrology of soul-mates/Why and how it all goes wrong

In Plato’s Symposium, we learn that humans originally consisted of four arms, four legs, and a single head with two faces.  But Zeus, most powerful of the Greek gods, feared the humans’ power and tore them asunder, condemning them to eternally search for the other half of themselves – their soul mate.

That’s as good as any explanation for the magical, mystical, and most importantly – fated – union you can feel in the presence of another.   For many, it’s the most beautiful, moving, and transformative experience for which one could ever hope.   I’ve had it.  Have you?

So why is it that – more likely than not – it all ends in tears?

Astrologically, the ‘soul mate’ phenomenon is inevitably bound up with Neptune, which moves in mysterious, illusive ways.  Neptune is counter logical. Neptune doesn’t play by the rules.  Belonging to another world, Neptune lures us into pursuit of a glamorous dream that takes us to places we’d never otherwise willingly have gone.

We all need some glamour in our lives.  But when the dream is over you’ll need to move on.

Does this mean you can never have a long-term relationship with your Neptunian ‘soul mate’? 

Of course not.

But what it does mean is that unless your soul mate relationship has more holding it together than Neptune contacts, when reality shatters your rose-coloured glasses, either or both of you will be sneaking out the backdoor with a grin.

‘Soul-mate’ themes in brief

  • Neptune/Moon – the Moon person provides stability that makes the Neptune person feel safe, and so he begins to believe the Moon will always be there for him.  Initially the Moon responds positively to Neptune’s needs and does all she can to reassure him.  But as the bonds grow stronger, the Moon becomes progressively more possessive and feeling overwhelmed, Neptune quietly slips away.
  • Neptune/Mercury – Neptune views Mercury as a clever companion.   Often their dialogue is both poetic and inspired.  Yet both Neptune and Mercury can be shameless liars and when they start down that path, it’s all downhill from there.  Neptune uses her mirroring powers to please and flatter at all costs.  For Mercury (governed by the god of tricksters and thieves), the truth is always relative.   In the end quarrels and misunderstandings are inevitable yet it’s what each of you do next that most matters.
  • Neptune/Venus – this contact has provided inspiration for poetry and fiction from the beginning of time; inevitably it involves the pain of illicit (and often unfilled) desire.   While Neptune fantasizes about the physical consummation of a mystical love, Venus waits impatiently for Neptune to take action.  The problem is that Venus wants to be loved through (and for) her body while what Neptune really loves is Venus’ soul.  This aspect reflects the intoxicating feeling of ‘being in love’.  Yet more often than not, it produces a broken heart.
  • Neptune/Mars – the sheer strength of the erotic pull between these two ensures trouble.  Neptune sees Mars as her invincible champion– tough, potent, decisive, and ready for battle.   In turn, Mars feels fulfilled with a worthy cause for which to fight.  Yet if Neptune can’t acknowledge her dependency on Mars, she’ll undermine him so as to ensure he doesn’t go off crusading for someone else.  Often this results in the classic ‘not tonight but maybe tomorrow’ script where Mars is kept eternally waiting.  On-going frustration may draw cruelty and violence from Mars.  The less Neptune understands her own capacity for aggression, the darker their relationship becomes.
  • Neptune/Jupiter – involves a profound sense of shared spirituality. Jupiter’s quest for meaning and optimistic vision provides Neptune a solid hook for her own, often inarticulate, deep yearnings.  Yet because both Jupiter and Neptune share a taste for the boundless, this aspect can end up with the blind leading the blind. Eventually Jupiter cajoles Neptune into some folly into which Neptune happily follows but when it all goes wrong (as it usually does), disillusionment inevitably follows.
  • Neptune/Saturn – involves a meeting of archetypal opposites.  Saturn (the strong, worldly, paternal figure) overtly builds strong foundation which Neptune (elusive, vulnerable, and distinctly of another world) subtly undermines.  When Saturn-Neptune aspects go wrong, they go very wrong. They can generate an intensity of anger and need to inflict emotional pain that becomes unbearable for both parties.  However if handled with care (and maturity), this aspect has the greatest potential for healing. 

No longer can we ignore …

No longer can we ignore …

A month ago, I predicted that the UK General Election would see the then conservative government out of power in what would be a surprise election result.

The surprise part was right but the predicted result was wrong.

The Tories swept back into power in the biggest landslide victory they’d enjoyed in decades. I will admit that I got it wrong because although the proverbial writing was clearly on the wall, like so many I dearly wished to ignore it.

Now we will be forced to read more carefully this writing on the wall as the Saturn/Pluto conjunction in Capricorn, undoubtedly the most important planetary configuration of the year – if not the new decade and beyond – kicks off in earnest.

If in doubt of how seriously this is being taken in astrological circles, Google “Saturn Pluto Conjunction 2020” – I got about 470,000 results in .33 seconds.

The Saturn/Pluto cycle is one of crisis and contraction.

It squeezes us until that which has been (personally and/or culturally) repressed oozes out and comes to the surface. The expected result is one of fear and loathing. Bad stuff happens as we collectively project this fear on to someone or something – a scapegoat who often seems, strangely, ready-made for the purpose.

For example, WWI commenced on the Saturn/Pluto conjunction in Cancer in 1914.

To understand how this works across the Capricorn/Cancer axis, first remember that Capricorn is ruled by Saturn and Cancer by the Moon. Thus we can expect the cold, hard reality of worldly events (Saturn) to seriously disrupt our domestic and emotional security (Moon).

We can also expect, as the fear rises and we look for someone to ‘control’ it for us, conservative governments and their policies to rise in power.

It starts with the lunar eclipse early this evening (GMT).

With every eclipse something ends and something begins but whilst solar eclipses tend to offer new opportunities, lunar eclipses tend to bring final endings. Thus the status quo to which we’ve adapted exists no longer and as a consequence, , like it or not, we are forced to take action.

Because in this eclipse the Moon is in Cancer, the sign that it rules, this will necessarily impact out our sense of emotional well-being. Then two days later, on the 12th of January, we will experience a seriously powerful planetary line-up in Capricorn (Saturn/Pluto/Sun/Mercury/Jupiter.

Expect nothing less than the total and utter structural (Saturn) collapse and upheaval – (Pluto) that will play heavy on our minds (Mercury). Because the Sun is involved as well, we can expect this crisis to bring CLARITY regarding some heretofore hidden TRUTH – a sober AWAKENING – as to the reality of some situation we’d been refusing to face.

Although it is unlikely that all will become apparent on the actual day of this conjunction, as we look back on events that unfold over the next 12 months, we’ll begin to see this seeding time for what it was.

This transit will also impact each of us individually – although those with natal planets or other key points in their chart between 20-25 degrees cardinal signs (Libra, Cancer, Capricorn, and Aries) will feel it more than others.

Stay tuned as later posts will address how this may all play out for you.

At the Heart of the Sun

At the Heart of the Sun

At this time of the year, it’s tempting to make grand announcements regarding intentions for the coming year. It’s as if simply by sharing them, we’re ensuring that they will enfold exactly as planned.

Usually, such strategy is a good one. But this year, it would be a grave mistake.

This is because two days ago the planet Jupiter aligned perfectly with the heart of the Sun, in Capricorn.

Classical astrologers know this moment as Cazimi – when Jupiter is absorbed and greatly empowered by the Sun. Sounds fabulous and it is! Imagine the power surge standing at the very center, the essence of all earthly things. Yet because in Capricorn, Jupiter is in ‘fall’, this also a time of great danger. When a planet is in fall, all that has been gained can easily be lost and the higher one has climbed, the farther her fall.

Thus the wise woman will be modest in announcing her expectations for the coming year. She understands now is not the time to draw attention to herself, to flaunt her skills and gifts. She remembers that, sadly, everyone has enemies and that she is no exception to the rule. She also remembers that in times of danger, it is inadvisable to draw out one’s enemies.

Instead the wise woman will keep her light hidden, her head down. Rather than making grand stands, she will remain quietly committed to accomplishing her goal.

the time of your life…

the time of your life…

What would you give to be able paint an accurate picture of the quality of time in your life right now?

One of the best ways to do just that uses the ancient classical technique known as Directing by Triplicity.

The idea is to look at the main luminary in your chart and it’s three classical triplicity rules (by element) and examine their ‘condition’ in your chart.

The 1st triplicity ruler governs the first 1/3 of your life, the 2nd triplicity ruler governs the second 1/3 of your life and of course the 3rd triplicity ruler governs the final 1/3 of your life. There are no hard and fast rules regarding when one moves from one life phase to another but generally the first transition occurs around aged 30 years and the last transition about aged 60 years.

In my chart, the main luminary is the Moon because I was born at night. My Moon is in Gemini, and so the triplicity rulers (of air) are Mercury, Saturn, and Jupiter (in that order).

As I’m now in the final 1/3 of my life, Jupiter is running the show. In my chart, Jupiter is also in Gemini (in detriment) in my 12th house (cadent).

To find out more about what this means for me, I consult the appropriate ancient texts, including the Liber Hermetis, which was translated from Latin into English by Robert Zoller (Project Hindsight):

  • My Jupiter is considered to be in the ‘boundlessness’ of the Moon and hence lacking the necessary structure to build ‘benefits’ of a lasting nature.
  • This Jupiter is at its possible best when marching to the beat of a different ‘drum beat’ – i.e. pursing that which is alternative, not mainstream.
  • It is likely that, during this time in my life, I will make my livelihood from ‘words, ‘numbers’ and even ‘sorceries’. Likewise, I may work ‘with celestial things’ and become a ‘prophet of the future’.
  • Beware, however, because my Jupiter is in the ‘terms’ of Saturn, whatever I’ve gained in the past could be now lost.

Much of this sounds more than plausible, especially now that, after 35 plus years as an international tax lawyer, I’m working as an astrological coach and as much as I love astrology and coaching, the transition has not been easy.

The good news is that however debilitated my Jupiter might be, it does ‘plug into the angles’ of my chart and has real possibility for me to accomplish my goals if, of course, I can find the necessary structure. Sadly, this will not be easy. Although my Jupiter and Saturn (symbolising structure) are ‘friends’ (they are in a helpful trine aspect to each other and in mutual reception by face and/or term ), Saturn benefits more from this relationship than does Jupiter (i.e. mutual reception negated by cadency).

Having recently retired from the corporate world of imposed structure, I do find it difficult creating the ‘structure’ necessary to underpin a successful astrological coaching practice. Luckily I’ve realised this and to that end am now working with coaches to help me. Rule number one when it comes to being a success – never hesitate to get help where necessary.

Finally, my Jupiter in Gemini is ruled by Mercury and as noted earlier, my Mercury has worked well for me in the past. Another ancient technique called Firdaria, suggests that on another personal front, my Mercury is really coming into its own. As with Saturn, my Jupiter is friends with Mercury (helpful trine again) and although Jupiter gets the short-end of the stick in this friendship, at least Mercury is empowered by the friendship (in the ‘terms’ of Jupiter) and so writing, (Mercury-ruled) is definitely going to be my thing!

If you’d like to learn more about how this technique can work for you, I’ve got a special offer on from now until 31 January 2020 – if you’re game, we can get started tomorrow!

Directing By Triplicity – Special Offer

TWO 60-minute sessions (ZOOM or SKYPE) investigating the quality of the time in your life right now using this ancient technique and how you can use this information to your best advantage.


When to call your astrologer…

When to call your astrologer…

… and what to ask.

First and foremost, astrology is meant to help you to put your mind at ease, to understand how the turning wheel of world fortune relates to you.

For example, when you’re going through a tough time, it’s healing to be able to mark the day in your calendar when it should all be over. Equally, there are times when doors in our lives open easily and times that they remain stubbornly shut. Astrology helps you to know in advance when is the best time to launch your plans as well as advising when they remain only half-baked.


Always have an advance idea of what you want to achieve in your astrology reading. Pure speculation is never helpful and can even be dangerous. Likewise, if you have a fixed outcome in mind as to the result of the reading, don’t expect astrology to simply confirm your plans. If you’re not prepared, at least in part, to think differently as the result of a reading, then don’t book it.

There are basically two types of readings; general and topical.

GENERAL READINGS – sketch out the narrative arc of the story that is your life. Imagine how much better you will function when you have a good understanding of who you are and what you want?

But as with any sketch, the devil is in the detail and this is where mixing astrology and coaching techniques comes into its own. There’s no sense walking away from the reading filled with fabulous information that you’ve no idea how to use.

  • Psychological astrology informs your most prominent personality traits, the way that you’re most likely to see and experience the world. With this, you can walk away from a 90-minute astrology session having learned more about yourself than you might in years of therapy. Coaching helps you decide what to do with what you’ve learned.
  • Before moving forward, it’s sometimes useful to look backwards. For example, before remarrying you might want to explore reasons why your first marriage failed. Equally, you might benefit from understanding why during a particular time in your life you flourished more than at other times or why you keep repeating the same ‘mistake’ time and time again.
  • Themes tend to repeat especially when they’ve not yet been adequately dealt with.  For those believing in reincarnation, it’s not hard to see how such themes carry through multiple lifetimes. For the historians and/or geneaologists, it’s not difficult to see how these themes carry on along family lines. And how about the mysterious mix of ideas, hopes, and dreams that you share with others of your generation? What’s that all about?
  • Have you ever wondered why you behave differently with some people than with others? Do some people know just which buttons to push whilst others seem to have no idea? Why does one person respond to your entreaties whilst another ignores them? Why are you to one person and not another? Relationship astrology answers these questions and more.

TOPICAL READINGS – consist of a question or series of questions usually relating to an important decision that you’ll soon take. Naturally the more you know about the topic in question, the more informed will be your decision making.

  • Astrology mixed with coaching helps you to clarify the question and your options as well as to evaluate how, for each of those options, events are most likely to unfold.
  • Horary astrology even allows for yes and no questions – i.e. should I take this job? But please keep in mind that although astrology can provide you with all sort of insight, it can never make the decision for you.

Chapter ONE:

Chapter ONE:

On 26th December at 5:18 AM GMT, we will enjoy the new Moon in Capricorn and with it, arguably, the biggest planetary aspect of the month, a powerful solar eclipse.

There’s a huge line-up of planetary energy in Capricorn – so basically, there is no place to hide.

You should – no, you will – do something with this energy although some (with planets or angles 2-6 degrees in the cardinal signs – i.e. Libra, Cancer, Aries, and Capricorn) folks will feel this more than others.

This is not so much a dark energy as it is something to be taken seriously – not the least because you now have an honest opportunity to make a new beginning – start a brand-new chapter – in some important aspect of your life.

This must be approached in a realistic, grounded manner, taking into consideration everything you’ve learned up to this point about life. Yet still you’ll be feeling excited – enthusiastic – about what’s opening up for you  – and it is good stuff because you’re going to make it so. It’s also going to be a long-hard slog to the realization of this new opportunity – this new project – this new chapter in your life – so prepare to be persistent and patient and do whatever it takes!

In this regard, you should consider:

  • Committing publicly to the project, telling your family and friends as much as possible about your plans;
  • Creating a plan of action and start actioning the points – ticking them off one-by-one – taking baby steps at first until the ball gets really rolling;
  • Recruiting support, be it a coach or a colleague or even a friend who understands your goals;
  • Establishing milestones – book appointments with yourself in advance to review how far you’ve come and how far you have yet, to go and a word of advice – don’t cancel these appointments – even if you’ve got nothing to report to yourself, be honest about that and use the time to think about how you will make it different next time.

Fine Old Wine

Fine Old Wine

Recently I was thrilled to tour Groot Constantia, the oldest wine estate in South Africa dating back to 1685.

This special place is touted as a top tourist destination – boasting award-winning wines, world-class eateries, and extensive well-manicured grounds framed by stunning scenes of natural, rugged beauty. Indeed, this wonderful winery still has in its possession the original purchase order from Napoleon, who required thirty bottles of their award-winning Grand Constance (still in production) – a sweet and smooth fine wine with spicy undertones – to give him comfort during his exile on St Helena Island.

This is the essence of Venus in Capricorn.

In Capricorn, Venus is not in dignity but equally, she’s not debilitated. This means that she is comfortably able to express her Venusian essence as long as it is in keeping with that of her host, Saturn, the natural ruler of Capricorn.

Capricorn is not only a feminine sign, but also an earth sign. In so many ways, this is Venus’s favourite placement. She loves nothing more than to create and enjoy beautiful & sensuous things and the earthy signs provide her with the perfect tools to do it.

Saturn is not only ambitious but also patient and hard-working. Saturn will do whatever it takes to succeed in the task at hand. With Venus expressing herself through the lens of Capricorn, she’s also willing to work as hard as is necessary to achieve her goals and one of her most passionate goals is to create satisfying, gratifying relationships.

What might this mean for you and your relationships?

If you or your beloved have Venus in Capricorn, then the advice is to play to these particular Venusian strengths.

For the rest of us, whilst Venus is in Capricorn, look to make your relationships more robust, more structured – more EARTHY. Yet at the same time, remain always soberly dignified and like the vintners at Groot Constantia, play this like you’re in it for the long game.

Just Plain Nasty

Just Plain Nasty

From the end of November 2019 to the beginning of January 2020, we’re confronted with some just plain nasty energy as Mars moves through his home sign of Scorpio. Of course, it doesn’t have to be nasty but there’s a pretty good chance that it will be and to learn why, please keep reading.

But first, let me give you a taste of what it might look like:

 …. my husband and I were driving from Oxford to the Lake District on the motorway known as the M6 and the traffic, unpleasant at the best of times, was worse than usual. But it all came to an ugly head when a dark BMW cut us off moving last minute and without indication, into the fast lane and my husband, who has Mars in Scorpio, didn’t hit the brakes but instead accelerated. Despite some unpleasant gesticulation between my husband and the driver of the BMW, we didn’t collide but I think you can see the potential for disaster when two powerful cars (my husband drives a black Audi A5) engage in a proverbial ‘pissing contest’ at 80-90 mph.

Welcome to Mars in Scorpio.

When a planet, like Mars, is in a sign it rules, in this case Scorpio, it readily expresses itself in way that is keeping with its essential nature.

As the god of war, Mars does war-like things: he fights, cuts, thrusts, and initiates. Mars is also associated with valour and courage and so when Mars is behaving well, we might expect Mars to be the proverbial knight in shining armour, fighting for a just cause. But when Mars is behaving badly, we might expect him to be excessively combative and aggressive, often for no readily apparent reason.

Every planet is both a ‘good’ and a ‘bad’ side, at least ‘good’ or ‘bad’ in keeping with societal norms and values. Often, it’s difficult to predict which side will manifest and this is especially the case with planets like Mars, which are considered to be ‘nocturnal’ in their essential nature.

‘Nocturnal’ is associated with the feminine and so in classical astrology, takes on characteristics associated with being variable and receptive. Nocturnal planets like Mars are even more variable when they are in the feminine signs they rule, in this case Scorpio.

In the northern hemisphere, Scorpio is decidedly autumnal – the light of the Sun is in slow, yet steady, decline until fully dissipated with the winter solstice.

This symbolism, which informs much of western astrology, suggests that Mars in Scorpio is more likely than not to behave in a dark, destructive, dissipating way. Because Scorpio is a ‘fixed’ sign – i.e. ‘holding the fort’ – Mars in Scorpio is often highly defensive whilst at the same time on the offensive – hence witness the recent ‘road-rage’ incident on the M6 when the ‘space’ occupied my husband’s black Audi A5 was ‘invaded’ by the dark BMW.

A great fall …

A great fall …

At the beginning of December 2019, Jupiter entered Capricorn, the sign belonging to Saturn. He will remain in this sign for the next twelve months, an entire year.

What might this mean?

First consider that Jupiter and Saturn are natural enemies.

Jupiter expands whilst Saturn constricts, contracts, and constrains. Both these planets represent archetypal ways of being and as the result are fundamentally unable to be changed. Nonetheless, when Jupiter is in the home, or domain, of Saturn, he must find a way to expand in a Saturnian fashion.

This suggests that during the next twelve months, successful growth and expansion must be undertaken with concrete commitment, due diligence, and unwavering discipline whilst still maintaining an optimistic attitude. Don’t be surprised if this happens in fits and starts – one step backwards for every two forward. The point is to stay with it – plow ahead – with full faith in the future. If you can do this, then chances are good that by December 2020 (when Jupiter moves on to Aquarius), you’ll have achieved something of lasting value.

Beware, however, that as with everything, Jupiter in Capricorn carries a dark and dangerous side.

Jupiter, the planet of optimism, faith, and, yes, risky ventures is not happy in Capricorn, the zodiac sign of its ‘fall’. When any planet is in the sign of its ‘fall’, then that’s exactly what we may expect – a fall – of some kind- be it from grace or power or some other great and lofty height.

This should prove a warning – especially to politicians and those similarly regularly in the public eye – there is potentially a great price to pay for trying to fly (Jupiter) too high in the face of reality (Capricorn/Saturn).



Last evening, Ms A kept pushing and pushing until I finally got angry and told her off. Then she played the victim, visibly hurt by my ‘inability’ (or unwillingness) to control my anger, leaving me to stew about whether it was me or her, who’d been wronged.

Upon reflection, I ought not to have been surprised this happened.

That’s because Mercury (in detriment in Sagittarius) is forming a square aspect to Neptune (strong in Pisces). This aspect perfects (completes) on Friday, 20th December, but we’ll be feeling now through to Sunday, the 22nd December.

To understand what’s in play here, let’s drop back to basics:


Mercury is the god of communication and interpretation; this last point is important and one we tend to forget.

When Mercury makes an aspect with any planet, we’re given an opportunity to reinterpret a situation and the message delivered in keeping with the nature of that other planet.

Because Neptune is involved, we are invited to revisit, revise, and reinterpret that situation/message to ensure that we are grasping the truth of what it was meant to convey.


Neptune is associated with illusion and delusion, the natural enemy to truth (however defined).

It is also associate with victim consciousness, which in my understanding is a dysfunctional way we allow life to happen to us instead of being an active participant in making it happen.  

There are many reasons why we fall into this and if you’re interested in learning more, I highly recommend Barry Weinhold’s book, How to Break Free of the Drama Triangle & Victim Consciousness.

But for now, let’s accept that whenever we are busy playing the role of the victim, we’re probably not in a very happy or healthy truth.

What messages might you expect to receive this week from Mercury/Neptune?

Quite possibly, you’ll have some experience like mine where you’re shown how easily you and others slip into victim consciousness. Accusations fly, blame ensues, and everyone feels worse for the encounter.

Equally, you might experience the conflict completely within yourself – sitting back and feeling sorry for yourself that because of ABC, XYZ hasn’t turned out as you’d wanted or planned.

In such cases, we can thank our lucky stars, or in this case, the planet Mercury, for giving us the opportunity to drop back and reinterpret the situation or experience in silence, in sacred time and space.

Luckily, I’ve got a couple of weeks before I’ll see Ms A again and so plan to use as wisely as possible my own sacred time and space.

If, as the result, I am willing and able to see and accept the ‘truth’ about my own role in the episode – then I stand in good stead to put it behind me and move on healed and renewed.  

If you can do the same, whatever experience/message you receive during this time, then you’ll most certainly benefit too.