Friday, August 18, 2006

Astronomy, astrology, and war

The morning of September 12th, 2001, I stood in my back yard and gazed towards the East, towards New York City and the rising sun. All those people, I thought for the hundred thousandth time. All those people.

And there, hanging in the Eastern sky, were a slim crescent moon and the planet Venus. The symbol of Islam hovering over the ruins of the World Trade Center as seen from most of the rest of the country.

The ground assault portion of the first Gulf War began in early 1991 while Mars was in Taurus, giving the Bull two red eyes.* Since ancient times this has been considered an auspicious sign, a signal that a war begun at this time will be successful. It is possible that when Ronald Reagan left office in 1989, he left behind some of his Court Astrologers.

(It should be noted that this was the real planet Mars appearing in the real constellation of Taurus. The positions of astrological "planets" and "constellations" have fallen very badly out of sync with reality over the centuries, and it is entirely possible that the astrological Mars was on the other side of the sky from the real, astronomical Mars.)

Now we are being told that Iran is planning something extra-special for August 22nd, next Tuesday. This is a Muslim holy day, Lailat al Miraj, which celebrates the night that Mohammed made a pilgrimage from Mecca to Jerusalem in a single night. According to the linked BBC source,

The Prophet travelled from Mecca to Jerusalem in a single night on a strange winged creature called Buraq. From Jerusalem he ascended into heaven, where he met the earlier prophets, and eventually God.

So is there an astronomical or astrological connection to this date? If you're a regular reader, you might already know that the answer is yes.** On this morning Mercury, Venus, and Saturn will all be gathered low in the Eastern sky, accompanied by a slim crescent moon. The sky will look very much as it did on the morning of September 12th, 2001.

Should we be concerned? Should we be scared? There are people on both sides of this conflict who recognize the value of keeping people in a state of fear. We shouldn't allow ourselves to be terrorized, but we shouldn't walk blindly into the future. What will happen? I don't know. We should expect nothing, and anticipate everything. In a few days, we'll know for sure.

*Actually, Mars spent much of late 1990 and early 1991 in Taurus, and some have connected its presence there to Sadaam Hussein's decision to invade Kuwait in the first place. The specific event I am recalling is that days before the start of the ground assault, on February 21, 1991, the Moon was in conjunction with Mars in Taurus. Hey, it's been over 15 years. Sometimes it takes a while to remember specifics.

**This really shouldn't be a huge surprise, since the Muslim calendar is based on the lunar cycle.


Anonymous said...

I've been concerned about the fear-mongering as well. That's why I've backed off a bit. I think we need, as you said, to be ready. But not afraid.

The War on Terror has been turned into entertainment since the beginning. The TV news treats the Israel-Lebanon conflict with the same emphasis as Jon Benet Ramsey's murder, trivializing both.

I think the best advice right now is Peter's: "Be sober and self-controlled. Be watchful. Your adversary the devil, walks around like a roaring lion, seeking whom he may devour."

None of us know what will happen. It's important not to let ourselves get jerked around, without sticking our head in the sand, either.


Bill @ IB

Super G said...

I'm flying into NYC on 8/22 for a business trip. I also have to fly to London the week after next for business. Do I get any "no guts, no glory points" points?

Lisa said...

Thanks for freaking me out, I am flying on 8/22.

D.B. Echo said...

Turns out half of our clients have promised assets to be delivered on 8/22. I'm guessing that they're counting on global armageddon happening after they've shipped their stuff. "The assets were fine when they left our facility...are you sure you didn't damage them upon receipt?"

Betz said...

"The assets were fine when they left our facility...are you sure you didn't damage them upon receipt?"
H, I laughed me arse off at this comment. Maybe I will get that week off in August that I wanted instead of being swamped with work up to my ears....
On a more serious note, I think that the Brits are so much more used to bomings etc due to the IRA that they are more prepared, and less ruffled by terrorists.
That is judging by my husband.
He was telling a story yesterday how his grandmother had just walked out of a pub a few years back and a bomb went off. :(
I wonder if we would have caught those people that they got in the UK last week had that happened here? I will try not to be afraid, my worst fear is that something like that will happen and I won't be with my son when it does, and how scared will HE be?