"An eclipse of the Sun or Moon in the Watery Triplicity presages rot or consumption of the vulgar sort of people, rumors, seditions, and expectations of Wars, destruction of water fowl, great inundations and overflowing sea-banks."
"From An Easie And Familiar Method Whereby to Judge the Effects Depending on ECLIPSES Either of the Sun or Moon." By William Lilly, Student of Astrology, London 1652.

Imagine that you are the Mayor of Los Angeles, and one of your advisors, who just happens to be an excellent astrologer tells you that on March 8, 1997, at 5:15 p.m. (PST) a Total Solar Eclipse in the sign of Pisces presages consumption (Tuberculosis and forms of Cancer) in the unemployed; the extinction of ducks on the Venice Canals; and sedition among the City Council. If you were that astrologer, what would you advise the Mayor to do?

Mundane Astrology, which relies heavily upon eclipse patterns, is that branch of the celestial science that deals with the fate of cities, nations and leaders, wealth, revolutions and the political forces which remap and reshape the borders and boundaries of our world. Eclipse study is another astrological tool that allows us a glimpse into the great cycles of abundance vs. famine; war vs. peace; and the births and deaths of princes, sages and kings. Eclipse charting and Mundane astrology differ from natal astrology in that they seek to discover bigger, broader ranges of possible events. The focus is generally global. However, eclipse patterns do affect us personally, as does the degree upon which the eclipse falls. Here's a mini-view of "sensitive eclipse degrees" by way of example.

TWA Flight 800 Crash

The Solar Eclipse of April 17, 1996 at 6:49 p.m. EDT (Washington, DC), which preceded the crash of Flight 800 on July 17, 1996 at 8:40 p.m. EDT (East Moriches, New York), fell on 28 degrees Aries 11 minutes. 28 degrees (plus or minus 5 degrees) becomes a highly sensitized degree not only in Aries, but at 28 degrees in the 11 remaining signs as well. The New Moon of July 15, 1996, 12:15 p.m. EDT (Washington, DC), two days before the crash, occurred at 23 degrees Cancer 26 minutes. Within 5 degrees we see by sign and element that a 90 degree (square) relationship between the Solar Eclipse and the New Moon had been set in motion. Remember, no one predicted that tragedy, and neither I nor any other astrologer I know noted the relationship between the sensitive degree in this example. Sometimes prophecy is hindsight.

Okay. That's dramatic, but we need to get one thing clear. You don't need to head for the hills every time we have an eclipse. With all due respect to our ancient teachers, dire and grim descriptions of potential events are products of an older cultural tradition. The discoveries, inventions, and medical expertise available to sages in centuries past are not always applicable to our era. Nor do we always experience events as calamitous as TWA Flight 800. There is a vast difference betwen a plague infested London of the 1600's and a 20th century residential neighborhood that lies within walking distance of a medical center. That is not to say that we will not foretell and then witness stunning events. Of course we will. But how do we get there?

Get started

To start your study, get a chart of the country, city, and/or state in which you reside. U.S. residents can consult Marc Penfield's "Horoscopes of the USA and Canada." If outside the U.S., refer to "The Book of World Horoscopes" by Nicholas Campion. You can progress and direct charts for nations and cities, etc., just as you would your own natal chart. Often you will find significant events in your locale coincide with progressions and directions, especially when long-term transits of the outer planets kick off a progressed or directed aspect. You will then compare all other charts necessary to eclipse study to this chart and to your natal chart, if so desired. For example, I live Santa Monica, California, however, I study Los Angeles' birth chart as Santa Monica is part of L.A. County.

Cast An Ingress Chart

Erect a chart for the Sun's ingress into the cardinal sign that precedes the eclipse you're studying. What is an Ingress Chart? First, let's look at a diagram:

Solstice DatesSun's PositionSeason
March 21Sun 0 AriesSpring Equinox
June 21Sun 0 CancerSummer Solstice
September 21Sun 0 LibraFall Equinox
December 21Sun 0 CapricornWinter Solstice

Thus, our seasonal changes are represented, as are the four elements: Fire, Water, Air and Earth. The ingress preceding the eclipse is considered exceptionally potent, as it is the "mother" of events foreshadowed by the eclipse by virtue of the Sun's firery release of elemental energy at each one of the year's four critical moments. Jim Maynard's "Celestial Guide" provides you with the exact time the Sun makes it to 0 degrees for each of the ingresses mentioned above. All you need is your trusty computer.

The ingress preceding the March 8, 1997 Solar Eclipse is the Capricorn one at the winter solstice, December 21, 1996, at 6:06 a.m. PST. Always check the ascendant on an ingress chart to time the chart's potency. At the 1996 solstice, firery, enthusiastic Sagittarius rises at 17 degrees 55 minutes (Koch houses). Potency rules are thus: if a mutable sign rises, the ingress chart is potent for six months. If a fixed sign rises, the ingress chart is potent for one year. If a Cardinal sign rises, the ingress chart is potent for three months. Clearly, the ebullient Sagittarius rising chart will be potent from the winter solstice until after the eclipse in March 1997. From this point forward, start looking for planets that fall in sensitive degrees, or within the same degrees of each other.

Locate The New Moon

Locate the new Moon which occurs just before the eclipse. A New Moon is a "seed" moment for the monthly soli-lunar relationship and is exceptionally fertile just before an eclipse. The New Moon prior to the March 1997 Solar Eclipse in Los Angeles occurs on February 7, 1997, 7:06 a.m. at 18 Aquarius 53. Something is happening.

Capricorn Ingress ChartMercury18 Capricorn 37
New Moon ChartSun/Moon Conjunction18 Aquarius 53
Solar EclipseSun/Moon Conjunction18 Pisces 30

18 is a sensitive degree! we have a semisextile between Ingress/Mercury and the New Moon and a semisextile between the new Moon chart and the Eclipse chart. Mercury is going to be a player.


Look at Conjunctions (if any) between Jupiter, Saturn, Uranus, Neptune or Pluto. Derek Appleby and Maurice McCann in "Eclipses, The Power Points of Astrology" indicate that such conjunctions are significant on a longer-term basis. (And they urge astrologers to research this). In the Solar Eclipse chart, Uranus at 7 Aquarius 00 minutes is within 3 degrees and 31 minutes of a conjunction with Jupiter at 10 Aquarius 31 minutes. (In my locale this conjunction occurs in the fifth house: surprises, a striving for freedom, idealism, sudden breaks, promotions, erratic creative urges, and consciousness expansion could be just a few of the possible manifestations!)

The Lord of the Eclipse

Determine the Lord of the Eclipse. The Lord is not necessarily the planet which rules the sign in which the eclipse falls. It could be the most prominent planet in the chart, i.e., Pluto on the Midheaven, or Saturn on the Ascendant. It could be the planet lying closet in degree to the eclipse itself, or the planet most heavily aspected. I check for all of the above, and I also look for the tightest aspect(s) in the chart as a whole. What houses are involved in the aspect? Where are the house rulers in the eclipse chart? In the eclipse chart, Mercury in the 7th house at 16 Pisces 08 minutes is 2 degrees 22 minutes from the Sun/Moon conjunction. Mercury does not operate alone when designated as Lord of an eclipse due to his function as "messenger of the gods." Mercury is the mediator between the Sun/Moon conjunction and the conjunction Mercury makes with Venus at 12 Pisces 20 minutes.

Both Mercury and Venus, as well as the Sun/Moon conjunction, are opposite the part of fortune and Earth (in Virgo) in the first house. Mercury rules Gemini, the Midheaven of my locale's eclipse chart. Mercury, Venus and the Sun/Moon conjunction in the eclipse chart fall into Los Angeles' 5th house. Mercury and Venus could indicate sweet talk from entertainers (5th house) toward revamping Hollywood's image from Tinsel Town to Compassion Town: The V.A. Hospital might soon be filled with veterans of the Gulf War recovering from exposure to Chemical Weapons (Pisces/Neptune). Maybe Hollywood can induce us to think (Mercury) about reaching into our pockets (Venus) to help fund research for a cure. (The idea here is to start brainstorming. Paint in broad strokes. Fill sheets of paper with your instant "take" on what all this could mean.) I might add that Mercury in close conjunction with the Sun/Moon in an eclipse chart can indicate extraordinary weather conditions. Since the eclipse happens in watery Pisces, I wouldnt' be surprised if we were inundated with surprise rains on the West Coast that materialize into blizzards on the East Coast. [My prediction turned out to be accurate, as the winter of 1997 was the El Nino winter which created bizarre weather conditions across the United States -- Claudia Dikinis.]


Determine which angle the eclipse falls closest to. The affairs related to that angle are ones which you will see a great amount of change in the months after the eclipse. As previously mentioned, The Solar Eclipse of march 8, 1997 for my town (Santa Monica) falls in the 7th house! It beings to look as though my city will be acted upon by LA and the USA's international relations, treaties and alliances (China); wars and disputes (Rwanda/Bosnia/Iraq); and marriages and divorces. As an aside, the South Node at 28 Pisces 41 minutes in the Eclipse chart is conjunct the fixed star, Scheat at 29 Pisces. Scheat deals with poisoning, among other things. I suspect that the Pentagon will not be able to avoid its responsibility to military personnel who were exposed to chemical warfare in Iraq. The national focus will trickle down to the local level thus fomenting a crisis in faith in the nation at large. Mars at 29 Virgo 55 minutes conjuncts the North Node in the first house and opposes the South Node in the 7th house. Mars, as harbinger of war, and symbolic of generals and the Pentagon, is at odds with the distressed victims of foreign wars. Mars is also partile trine Neptune (29 Capricorn), and Neptune rules chemicals as well as deception and evasion of responsibility.

Eclipse Paths

Use Jim Maynard's "Celestial Guide" (for the year in question) and refer to his "Eclipses" section and find out what path the eclipse takes. "Path" simply refers to where the eclipse will be visible on planet Earth. If the eclipse can be viewed from where you live, you can just about bet that it will affect the workings of your city and state. Maynard is careful to include the phases of eclipses as well as how long each phase lasts. Add up the total time of the eclipse to determine the time potency. Generally an eclipse is said to maintain potency for as many years as hours of duration in the heavens. The total Solar Eclipse, March 8, 1997, lasts for 5 hours and 9 minutes. Therefore, this eclipse should take us into the 21st century!

Sun And Moon -- Degrees

Make note of the degree of the Sun and Moon in the eclipse chart and remember to look for them in eclipse charts you cast in the future. In the Total Eclipse Chart, the Sun and Moon are in conjunction at 18 degrees Pisces 30 minutes. I like looking up the Sabian symbol for eclipse degrees and note them in my file. Bear in mind that when working with Sabian symbols you must round up to the next highest degree when any planetary degree exceeds 00 minutes. Therefore, in this case, let's examine the Sabian symbols for 19 degrees Pisces:

"The transfer of power and knowledge which keeps the original spiritual and creative impulse of the cycle active and undeviated.
An Astrological Mandala, by Dane Rudhyar.
And for Janduz fans:
First Image, Outer Symbol:
"On a long table in a laboratory are placed utensils and instruments used in chemistry and medicine. At the right, at the end of the table, a man is pounding something in a mortar."
Second Image, Inner Symbol:
"A master and pupil commune in strength on a long walk."
The Zodiac Image Handbook/The Mutable Signs by Helene & William Koppejan

I like both Rudhyar's and Janduz's images because of the implication via the eclipse degree, that the Age of Pisces, at this century's end, comes to fruition through communion between master and disciple; through the pulverizing of ego by way of mortar and pestle; to synthesis after a 2,000 plus year Piscean Age lesson.

Finally, analyze the relationships between planets, signs and houses in the eclipse chart and your city's chart and relate them to local and national affairs. Go for broad, open minded interpretations of possible scenarios. Comb the newspapers, the internet, and other other periodicals for clues and verifications. Clip articles and keep them in your eclipse file. Doing so will build your research library by providing you with reminders of events that appear related to cosmic patterns.

My article "Eclipse 1997! appeared in the winter 1996 issue of "Aspects" magazine. My thanks to Cynthia Withers, President, Aquarius Workshops, Inc., for permission to reproduce it here.

2001 EclipseSchedule

Lunar Eclipse, January 9, 2001
3:24 PM EST +5:00
Washington, D.C.
38N54 77W02
Asc: 28 Gemini

Solar Eclipse, June 21, 2001
7:56 Am EDT +4:00
Washington, D.C.
38N54 77W02
Asc: 27 Cancer

Lunar Eclipse July 5, 2001
11:04 AM EDT +4:00
Washington, D.C.
38N54 77W02
Asc: 16 Virgo

Solar Eclipse, December 14, 2001
3:36 PM EST +5:00
Washington, D.C.
38N54 77W02
Asc: 8 Gemini

Lunar Eclipse December 30, 2001
5:40 AM EST +5:00
Washington, D.C.
38N54 77W02
Asc: 13 Sagittarius

Solar Eclipse Schedule
1997 - 2000

DateSign & Degree
March 9, 199719 Pisces
September 1, 199710 Virgo
February 26, 19988 Pisces
August 22, 199828 Leo
February 16, 199927 Aquarius
August 11, 199918 Leo
February 5, 200016 Aquarius
July 1, 200010 Cancer
July 31, 20008 Leo
December 25, 20004 Capricorn

Lunar Eclipse Schedule

DateSign & Degree
March 24, 19974 Libra
September 16, 199724 Pisces
March 13, 199822 Virgo
August 8, 199815 Aquarius
September 6, 199814 Pisces
January 31, 199911 Leo
July 28, 19995 Aquarius
January 21, 20001 Leo
July 16, 200024 Capricorn




Copyright © 1997-2001 by AstroConsultants of Santa Monica, Claudia D. Dikinis. All international rights reserved.