Cosmophilia: You Belong Here for Leo
By Eric Francis
Leo Part One
Leo Part Two
Your charts this year are booming with heart energy, with love and with generosity. Between Jupiter in your sign and the asteroid Eros conjunct the Sun on the day the Sun arrives in your sign, you are the embodiment of abundant passion.
You have faith in your ability not just to succeed, but also to be supportive of the people around you: your idea of love is love expressed in tangible ways. You have come to terms with how much of what you offer, tangible though it may be, is not noticed by most people. So often, the best of who you are disappears into the background of existence.
And still, you give yourself credit for what you do for, and give to, other people. That is the important thing. Sometimes it seems like the right thing to be making your best contributions in the background, even though the natural impulse of Leo is to shine like the Sun.
Now you no longer want to be in the background — you want to be known and respected for the abundant good that you offer. I think this is a reasonable desire; to be valued by your community is one of the most basic human needs. It manifests in shadow form as the hero worship that characterizes the post-9/11 era of history, which allows these heroes to get away with all kinds of bullshit. I would draw a stark distinction between being valued and being a hero. As far as I can tell you will still do your best work behind the scenes, regardless of any common interpretations of your sign.
In astrology there is a fine metaphor for this. The Sun is at the center of the solar system. It is the thing that shines light, radiates energy and is our symbol for glory — and yet it’s in service of all the other planets. It’s rare for anyone to feel the warmth of the Sun and to say, “Thank you for preventing my little planet from flying off into space.”
You know you do both — radiate warmth and love, and hold things together in a way that few people can, and that few people even recognize. That does not diminish your contribution.
Yet at the same time, you seem to be in doubt of the best contributions you have to offer. It’s as if you don’t think there’s enough of you to go around, or as if you’re questioning whether your personal resources are really adequate to meet the many demands on your time and energy.
There is little relationship between these two possibilities. It’s as if they exist in different worlds, bearing no connection to one another, or even canceling one another out. Except, of course, that they both exist within you. Yet they seem to make themselves known in different states of mind. The tension is challenging to live with, especially if you’re wondering which is true.
This is not a question of either/or. It’s a question of how you see yourself. There is also the question of your particular growth pattern right now, which seems to be focused on a heightened level of self-scrutiny. This is inherent in your nature owing to the placement of Virgo in your chart — in your 2nd house of personal resources and self-esteem. It’s natural for you to offer so much yet doubt the very thing you share. That particular question has come into focus the past year or so; something seems to be taking a toll on your self-esteem. At the same time it’s become challenging to get clear with others in a way that, in the past, was pretty easy.
These factors have, in turn, led you to some questions about money. It seems to be an issue in a way that it was not in the past. Your personal financial affairs are more complicated than they’ve been in a while, or perhaps ever. The question to ask is, how much of this is a question of how you feel about yourself? How much is a question of your doubts manifesting outside yourself, as if by projection?
What I am suggesting here is that any self-doubt you may be feeling is a purely psychological phenomenon. It’s unrelated to what you actually have to offer to the world, and what you succeed in offering. Yet doubt is powerful. It can cause you to hold back, and it has a way of obscuring the many positive results of what you do.
I suggest you address your self-doubt as a specific project. The time has come to get a handle on this. It does not serve you; it doesn’t serve you in the way you think it does, which is to make you a better person. What you will benefit from is a state of harmony with yourself, and an ongoing awareness of what you contribute and how much it means to others. Yet to be truly meaningful what you contribute must be something you are aware of.
This is a wholly spiritual or perhaps psychological issue; even though you can account for your value on the material level, your awareness of it is about your relationship to yourself, and in turn, how you perceive your relationships with others.
An Unusual Conjunction
On the day the Sun ingresses your sign, there is an unusual conjunction in the next sign over — Virgo, your 2nd house, which covers self-respect and self-esteem. The 2nd house also represents abundance, available resources such as money, and the means and tools for doing your self-sustaining work. It is also the house of one’s personal values.
The most significant thing to know about this house is that it says your most valuable resource is your intelligence. It’s your ability to think in an original, integrated way. This is a step beyond creativity, which is a given. What you have is the gift of doing something productive with your creativity; the gift of assimilating ideas and making them accessible and practical — and because this is the 2nd house, converting them into a form that can sustain you.
Always remember that — you are sustained by your ideas more than by your labor or your time spent working. If you don’t think you have good ideas, look more carefully. If you know you have good ideas but don’t know how to have them sustain you, use your intelligence and figure it out.
The conjunction in this house involves Transpluto (a very slow-moving hypothetical planet), Isis (an asteroid) and Venus (the planet we all know and love). They are aligned to within a small fraction of a degree. Aspects this exact, at peak or defining moments, are symbols that speak in a way that says listen carefully.
First, what is a hypothetical planet? It’s a planet without a body, which exists only in computer programs, books and in the minds and charts of astrologers. There are nine of them in total. Along with many hypothetical things in astrology (such as house cusps and the Part of Fortune), Transpluto speaks to anyone who may be listening, and for those who use it consistently, it has withstood the test of time.
It’s challenging having Virgo on the 2nd house; this is a sign that can easily doubt itself, and turn on itself. The austerity and self-criticism associated with this sign make it complex as a symbol of self-esteem. Where there is Virgo, there must be the conscious cultivation of trust in one’s intelligence. Transpluto, an unusual point that takes 1,000 years to go around the Sun, magnifies this quality. After spending about 70 years in your sign, it has newly arrived in Virgo and it seems to be hyper-focusing the qualities of Virgo.
If you’ve been extra hard on yourself lately, or have just given up and pondered the idea that the way the world is, integrity doesn’t matter anyway, that is Transpluto at work. Yet Transpluto has another message — that of specificity. It’s pointing to something clear and exact, something you will take notice of sooner or later. That something may be small, like a key, but such small bits of matter can make a big difference. In the context of knowledge, the idea is to focus on gaining specific knowledge. That is to say, specialize in something. The risk of specialization is that of losing context — therefore, learn to keep context in mind (see my discussion of the 8th house in a little while).
Virgo is the sign of the harvest. It represents where all of the abundant gifts of nature and the ingenuity of agriculture are kept; it is literally Mother Earth’s Storehouse, and for you, her storehouse of ideas and mental talent. Virgo and what it represents are essential to survival.
The second planet in this conjunction is Isis, representing that which is scattered and must be gathered; that’s a good illustration of a field of grain. Then there is Venus, the planet of love and abundance. All of them are in Virgo — it’s like you’re getting a personal visit from the threefold goddess, in your house of self-respect and abundance.
Have you ever had one of those experiences when you were certain you were short on cash, but turned out to have far more than you thought? Or that you needed something desperately, but actually had one right in the house? That is your approximate situation right now. It’s as if you have a vast storehouse of something but you have not noticed it, or figured it out — or more likely, you doubt its worth.
You are not the person who arrives at the party with the case of Jack Daniel’s. You are the person with the key to the ice chest, or the knowledge of how to pick the lock.
Another way to look at Isis is as a wheat field before the harvest. If you don’t know what you’re looking at, you might think it’s just a bunch of plants. But when the wheat is harvested and processed, what those wispy plants produced is very impressive. Over time, humanity has devised ever-more clever ways of bringing in the harvest. The wheat itself is one property of Virgo. How to turn it into food on the table is another.
I suggest you apply this to yourself — to your perception of what you have, and what you have to offer. When you gather all those seemingly different things together, such as into some form of specialization, you will see that it really is something impressive. Later in the year, close to your birthday, Jupiter will arrive in Virgo. At that point you just might figure out what you’ve got going for you, and what you offer.
But I suggest you do it yourself, before then; if you do, the abundance that Jupiter represents will be greatly magnified. Where there is an increase in any resource, it helps to have the ability to gather and preserve it. So, I’m suggesting that you tap into your resourcefulness before Jupiter comes along and creates an overflow.
In the article The Threefold Goddess in a Field of Grain, I wrote that Virgo represents how, “An idea becomes real; a potential manifests. The germ of life inside the seed of grain is protected, and when the conditions are right, it emerges and grows. That is the essence of Virgo, where we see so much in the way of intellectual expression yearning for a place to take form. To do this, it’s necessary to honor the life within what we’re doing, and the deeper life within ourselves. This takes patience and care. It requires living in service of that inner light, until it’s fully born.”
This combination of factors points you to something you should know about yourself, which is a gift of abundance. It’s as if you have access to an endless harvest of ideas and resources. The more you use your mind, the more it will be there for you. The more you apply your ideas to practical problems, the better you will get at solving them. There is no limit to what you can do, particularly if it involves analysis or integrating seemingly different facets of life.
Developing your ability to think in a systemic way will expand this talent. When you are presented with a puzzle, a problem or a creative task, think whole system. Consider how every aspect of any system influences every other — and you will magnify your efficiency and your abundance on every level.
There is one more essential factor to this, which is keeping in touch with your sexuality. The 2nd house is about self-sexuality. Venus is a symbol of sexual vitality, and in the 2nd house, of selflove. Conjunct Transpluto there is the possibility of taking a narrow view of your sexuality and sexual ‘value’ to others.
Conjunct Isis, there is a clue from the myth of Osiris about assembling all the pieces of his body — except for his penis. When it comes to sex, remember Venus — and remember the penis. More than anything, remember that all love is selflove extended out into the world.
If indeed you want to access the endless harvest of yourself, it’s your humanity toward yourself that will make it possible. If your abundance at any time seems to stop, check this aspect of your life first.
Art and Work: Sagittarius and Capricorn
The single most dramatic change in your chart this year is the sign-change of Saturn. Saturn has just made a two-year journey across Scorpio, a sensitive region of your chart covering such matters as trust, security, your home space and your emotional wellbeing.
The trust issue is especially important with Scorpio here, because your early family environment may have put you in a position where you had to defend yourself in some way, and you may have taken that property into adulthood. Saturn has provided a message about, and prompted you to take action on, coming to terms with your own emotional reality.
This transit may have come with changes to your base of operations — new dwelling places, changes in your family (particularly your father’s side of the family), and a sensation of cleaning house.
Now Saturn is moving into your 5th house — play, creative expression, risk-taking and sex for fun. You have Sagittarius on this house, which is much of what accounts for the bold and brash side of some Leos. Having Saturn here may not sound like fun, though Saturn is going to help focus everything that has been so chaotic about Sagittarius.
Where Saturn goes, the theme of the transit is to get serious. It can be so serious, in fact, I suggest mentally connecting the Saturn glyph to the reminder “keep your sense of humor” — a factor that Saturn supports and rewards, if you remember. Where Saturn is going is your personal art studio — your creative space and mental creative zone. Sagittarius has been intense and inspiring in recent years, though it’s been a mob scene of over-the-top influences. Saturn is now allowing you to work with an organizing principle. In some ways this is going to cool off the activity in this house, though I would propose you would benefit from a slightly lower temperature here so you can concentrate your energy and get some real work done.
In every chart, Saturn plays a different role. In your chart, Saturn is the planet associated with two houses, one of which is the 6th house, where you have Capricorn. In a sense, Saturn is a delegate in your 6th house, which is the one associated with productivity, work and your day-to-day affairs. It’s also the house of service, health and wellbeing.
You can take all these ideas and import them to the 5th house of art and creativity, which describes why I’m proposing that this is a focusing influence.
Capricorn and your 6th house, for its part, are currently getting a long visit from Pluto. Pluto has three main manifestations: the evolutionary impulse, obsession and the demolition team. All of these describe your relationship to your work and productivity. Pluto here is describing an obsessive effort of some kind. This is necessary sometimes, but as a way of life it will burn you out. Pluto in Capricorn is a reminder to harness your creativity and your intelligence rather than your efforts.
This will apply to maintaining or improving your health as well. If you have any health issues, consider the way that you structure your work and your time and you may find you get a foothold on improving your situation.
Under this transit, there may be work-related stress due to changes in your work environment — changes over which you seem to have no control. The control you actually do have is how you respond. It is clear that change has been inevitable and remains so in your work environment, and that you will need to go with the flow.
How do you do that? Bring your intelligence! Become valued as a resource, for your intelligence. Your main value to your place of work is your analytical skill. There is a powerful intuitive component to that, but ultimately, you only need good ideas that move energy and at least a basic sketch of how you got there. I suggest you not be attached to your ideas. I also suggest you test them out in small ways, so that when you present them, you have some evidence of their effectiveness.
A Message From Your 8th House
All of the houses in astrology are interesting, though one stands tall — the 8th house. In your chart this is Pisces. It is opposite Virgo, your 2nd house. The 2nd is personal resources and what you have to offer. The 8th is shared resources, what others share with you, and what is manifested as a result of relationships.
The 8th is therefore about agreements — what you might think of as your personal contracts. With Pisces on this house, you can think of all your agreements with others as expressions of your spiritual perspective, whatever that may mean to you.
That might mean what is ordained by God. It might mean what you perceive as your karma, the results of your past actions, old relationships or unresolved affairs. It might mean that those agreements are preserved in the Akashic records, located in the halls of light and attended by beings in long white robes. It might mean the ‘sacred contracts’ described by Carolyn Myss. These all might be referring to the same thing.
Whatever metaphor you use, this also refers to the tangible agreements you have with others, particularly when involved in sexual and business relationships. Astrology places those relationships in the same general category — that of shared resources and the benefits of partnership.
With Pisces here you have natural faith in people; you take a humanitarian view. Yet there can also be a foggy, cloudy or unclear quality to your agreements, which therefore demand specificity and directness. At the moment there are enough planets transiting your 8th house to write a book about. I will do what I can in an article.
The influences in your 8th house include some of the most potent planets used by astrology, all of which could be described as having a direct relationship to Pisces — and therefore, to that which is based on faith, belief, creative vision and spiritual healing. By that I mean healing your relationship to existence.
Yet for that to work, it’s essential that you take care of the practical matters of business, money, agreements and sexual responsibility. Chiron’s presence is insisting on some documentation, and saying this will be very helpful. The presence of Neptune is saying that clarity may be different and idealism is the way to go. I would caution against that point of view. It’s not that you should not trust, but idealism is dangerous and we live in the age when documentation is important — especially where there is a financial transaction.
Note that marriage IS a financial transaction. It’s a few other things as well, and considered romantic. But in the end, it’s a business contract. Be aware that you’re given a one-page document to sign, but you’re really signing something as thick as the New York City telephone book, all five boroughs, including the Yellow Pages. If those books are now hard to find and exist hidden away in libraries, the same is true for the actual documents, including laws — case law, banking and tax law and family law — related to marriage.
It’s not the “easy in, easy out” kind of contract. That is what you need — contracts with exit clauses, finite terms, and especially with clear expectations expressed. Another planet, Nessus, about to enter your 8th house for the next 20 years, is saying, “You are responsible for what you sign. Do not sign anything where you don’t think you can actually do everything it requires.”
All of that said, what the 8th house offers you is a much wider context than you might ordinarily have. Other people can vastly broaden your perspective, and open up possibilities that would never have existed for you. The way to access those possibilities is trust, though trust needs to come within the structured framework of an understanding that you document in some way, even if by an email thread that you preserve.
Leadership: Postscript from 1992 QB1
I’ve touched on matters of work and that naturally extends into this thing we call ‘career’, a subject that applies to you less than the concept of ‘vocation’. Career is something you do; vocation is something you’re called to do.
Your house of career or vocation is Taurus — the 10th sign from your own. There is a newly arrived planet there — as yet unnamed, discovered about 23 years ago, significant for being the first discovery of a body beyond Pluto in our solar system. I could say a lot about this planet, and I’ll have more to say in the audio version of this reading, but the key word here is collaboration.
The 10th tends to delineate lines of authority and accountability. The presence of QB1 there shifts the vertical axis to a horizontal one — now the theme of this house for you is working with others on level ground. That does not take away differences in experience or knowledge, but it certainly shifts the dynamic of many relationships. It’s possible to do this even if one party to the relationship thinks that someone is above or below the other person. It’s not something you announce, it’s something that you just do. Yet to make this happen well you must take absolute authority over your own actions, which to some extent means extending your field of responsibility for others.
Said another way, you want things to go well around you, which means participating in corrective action, maintaining awareness of the whole process, and identifying the needs of people you’re working with. You can do this without being intrusive. You merely need to be present, competent and over-prepared for the role that you have.
As you do this, you may discover that ‘the way’ opens up before you, which will make it easier to aspire to great accomplishments that to you feel like you’re just doing your job. And this you can apply to any area or aspect of your life, because it’s as true for any one as it is for any other.
This is leadership in the form that it needs to evolve into — and you are one of its pioneers. Humans are conditioned to be masters and slaves; they are conditioned, generally, to take power or give up power. As the first planet discovered beyond Pluto, the essential role of QB1 is to get humanity beyond what amounts to the life-or-death power struggles of Pluto.
Just remember: QB1 does not have a name. This new kind of collaborative, self-aware authority doesn’t have one either. Perhaps you might want to give it a name — though I suggest getting a feel for it first.