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Astrological Eclipses

On the evening news, you'll only hear about eclipses when they occur someplace interesting, usually in your own back yard about once every twenty years. In fact, solar and lunar eclipses occur in pairs every six months or so in what we call "Eclipse Seasons". Sometimes you get a bonus: two lunars and a solar, or two solars and a lunar in the space of a single month. Solar eclipses can range in intensity from the moon's just clipping the sun to the dramatic total eclipse. A Lunar eclipse can range from an imperceptible darkening of the lunar disk, to complete disappearance. Unlike solar eclipses, a lunar eclipse is generally visible to half the planet. The importance of eclipses in astrology has long been known, but is still not clearly understood.

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ECLIPSES AND YOU: How to align with life's hidden tides - Judith Hill, $15.95



1. The four main types of eclipses
2. Eclipse effects, types and duration
3. What can I do?
4. Understanding eclipses for your sign: How to use this book
5. Eclipses through the twelve signs
6. For those who read charts: Timing, transit planets and natal planets

I. Technical description of eclipses
II. Eclipse date (date, sign, node, 2013-23)
III. Astral mechanics


Articles by Judith Hill
About the author


The heart of the book is chapter 5, the effects of the eclipses in the twelve signs, with interpretation for each of the twelve signs for each eclipsed sign, a total of 144 delineations in all. Look at the sign of the upcoming eclipse, then see how your sign will fare. Be sure to read not only your Sun sign, but also the sign of your ascendant, your Moon, and the ruler of your ascendant.

To get the most out of that chapter, go to the final chapter, 6. In it, Judith gives specific instructions for what to do when the degrees match up, in other words, when an eclipse, solar or lunar, makes a tight aspect to a planet in the natal chart. Judith recognizes four types of eclipses. Not partial or total, but South Node and North Node: North node solar, north node lunar; south node solar, south node lunar. An eclipse at the north node (conjunct the node as printed in the ephemeris) brings in energy, an eclipse at the south node (opposite the position shown in the ephemeris) takes energy away. So far as a lunar eclipse is concerned, with the Sun on one side of the sky and the Moon on the other, the eclipse takes place where the Moon is, since the Moon is the body being eclipsed.

So, on the one hand, a north node eclipse can bring more luck, more contacts, more friends, more money, more fun, more work, or can bring invasions, excess, overwhelming situations, greed, destruction, swelling, etc. A south node eclipse can bring release, relaxation, escape, cleansing, second chances; or weakening, draining, depression, a loss of control, sorrow, withdrawl, fear, etc.

So if we take what we learn in chapter 6 and plug it back into chapter 5 we have, at last, a practical guide to eclipses in the natal chart. The delineations are still a bit scattershot, but at least all the bases covered.

The list of eclipses in Appendix II is limited to ten years, 2013-23, which is short. DeVore's Encyclopedia has eclipses from 1800-2000, broken down in a number of useful ways, useful in all manner of studies. (As in, have you ever had an eclipse exactly conjunct your chart and if so, when and what happened?) To which, if you have an ephemeris with the node in it (mean or true), you can add the north/south polarity.

Stellium Press, 167 pages.

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1. Introduction
2. The effect of eclipses
3. Eclipses & their relationship to natal horoscopes
4. The eclipse path
5. Prediction
6. Eclipse paths in mundane astrology
7. Eclipse paths & astrocartography
8. Jayne's original articles
9. Putting it all together
10. The primary family of eclipse paths
11. New dimensions in mundane astrology
12. Eclipse paths in practice

1. The Uranian system in mundane astrology
2. Where to find it / Sources of data (bibliography)


The premise of the book, based on earlier work of Charles Jayne and L. Edward Johndro, is that the path a solar eclipse takes is signficant to world events, most especially to the countries so shadowed. Secondarily, these eclipse paths are significant to the natal charts of the leaders and other important people of that country, whether natives or, in the case of Karl Marx, born the day of an eclipse that fell across Russia, as interlopers.

This is easily the best, most detailed, book on eclipses that I have ever seen. Part of the book is mundane, part of it is natal. Your "birth eclipse" is not necessarily your prenatal eclipse, but whichever eclipse is nearest to your birth, before or after, determined, in part, by the aspects it makes to your natal. This is usually a solar eclipse, but can be a lunar.

Eclipses that fall on the same area again & again can be collectively studied as eclipse families. An eclipse that begins here & ends there links the two places together. Eclipses can trace paths that later become boundaries, or trade routes or invasion paths. There are eclipses that activate other eclipses, from decades earlier. Events that happen on or around an eclipse can have fateful outcomes when activated by later eclipses, either by zodiacal longitude, or by falling over the same place, even many years later. Every 18 years or so, eclipses repeat, which can have significant impact. All of which is to say that a solar eclipse remains a sensitive point for years, decades, even centuries. Far longer than anyone had previously thought.

Lavishly illustrated with many, many maps of eclipse paths, many charts. There are no cookbook sections, there are no easy answers, nothing you can look up quickly. This is a book that both demands, and rewards close study. It will revolutionize the study of eclipses.

Cycles Research, 329 pages.

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LUNAR SHADOWS III, The Predicitve Power of Moon Phases & Eclipses - Dietrech J. Pessin, $32.00

Foreward by Frank Clifford
Chart, photo & biography of Dietrech Pessin

1. Using the lunar gestation cycles
2. Moon phase agendas
3. The Moon moods for eclipse and moon phase
4. Eclipses in concept & history
5. Solar eclipses
6. Lunar eclipses
7. Astrological tools

Appendix & Tables:

Table I: Solar & Lunar eclipses, 1900-2099: Date, Zodiacal degree & minute, North or South node.

The Metonic Cycle Eclipse Groups as They Travel Through a Lifetime, an essay.

Metonic Cycle Groups, sorted by zodiac: Aries solar & lunar eclipses in Metonic cycles, Taurus lunar & solar eclipses in Metonic cycles, etc. While the Metonic families are shown, the traditional Metonic numbers are not given.

Table III: Moon families linked with the lunar gestation cycle, 1927-2050

Table IV: The table of traditional moon phases, 1990-2049


Comment: The long-awaited third edition of her excellent book on eclipses, similar, overall, to the second edition.

Pessin's original observation is that the sign & degree of a new moon (or solar eclipse) turns up, a few degrees more or less, nine months later as the a first quarter moon. Nine months after that, the same degree turns up as a full moon, and a further nine months later, it turns up as a third quarter moon.

By extrapolation, the Sun / Moon cycle is orderly enough that anytime a phase of the Moon hits a sensitive point in your chart (for example, the ascendant), that same point will be hit, nine months later, by the next phase in the sequence. Since new Moons & solar eclipses pack the most punch as initiators, they are useful indicators of the beginnings of new cycles. By contrast, full Moons / lunar eclipses are the culmination of cycles that started earlier, and which will now fade in significance. I think this expresses Pessin's basic premise.

Should such a phase hit your chart by direction or progression, you have entered - or concluded - a major life cycle.

Here is an example. The following was taken from the first appendix in the second edition. In the third edition, it's now Table IV.

Reading across, you can see how a new Moon at 10 Libra became, nine months later, a first quarter at 12 Libra, and then, nine months further, a full Moon at 13 Libra, a drift of 1 degree per cycle. Pessin calls these related lunations a Lunar Gestation Cycle.

Reading down, you can see that a new Moon at 10 Libra became, a month later, a new Moon at 9 Scorpio, and then, a month after that, a new Moon at 9 Sagittarius, etc. Pessin calls these Moon Families. For those of you who use Equal houses, you will note that a new Moon (for example) falling on your ascedant will become, a month later, a new Moon on the 2nd house cusp, and then, a month after that, a new Moon on the third cusp, then the fourth cusp, etc. For those of you born in the Tropics, this will be true regardless of the house system you use, since, in the Tropics, all house systems produce more or less equal cusps. (As the Earth, Sun & Moon do not follow an exact schedule, these relationships will fall apart over time.)

These related lunations become the organizing thread for transient events. Whatever was happening in your life when a new Moon / solar eclipse cycle hit your chart, will most likely continue, nine months later, with the next phase, and then, nine months later, with the climax. By contrast, should you see that a critical degree of your chart is about to be hit by a full Moon or lunar eclipse & want to know what might happen, you can use the tables in the back of the book to find the earlier critical dates and then study the earlier situation, to better prepare yourself.

A unique, powerful way of looking at eclipses.

Originally subtitled, "Lost key to the timing of eclipses."

Igloo Press, 319 pages, oversize paper.

YOUR PRENATAL ECLIPSE - Rose Lineman, $16.00
Contents: Introduction. 1. Your prenatal eclipse: A beginning. 2. The past, present & future. 3. Prenatal eclipse in the signs. 4. Prenatal eclipse in the houses. 5. Prenatal eclipse aspects in the natal horoscope. 6. Progressed & transiting aspects to the prenatal eclipse. 7. Relationships from the past to the present. Appendix: Solar & lunar eclipses, 1900-1999 (includes Saros number, type, longitude, beginning-greatest-ending earth coordinates); bibliography; index.

Comment: Of her three books on eclipses, this is the best. This was out of print for several years, I am pleased the AFA has recently (May 2002) reprinted it. The prenatal eclipse is the last solar (not lunar) eclipse prior to your birth, it reveals karma from previous lives, karmic relations & the problems we must solve to gain karmic progress. The prenatal eclipse is generally found in the vicinity of the north or south node. Delineates prenatals in signs, houses, in aspect to other planets, transits & progressions to them, even solar returns to prenatal eclipse positions. Includes tables of eclipses from 1900 to 1999. The classic book on prenatals.

AFA, 114 pages, paper.

The mysterious solar & lunar eclipses in detail. The 19/38 Saros series of eclipses, lunar/solar eclipses by sign & house, aspects to natal planets, how eclipses influence each other, how long they remain active in a chart & more. Appendix: Twentieth century solar and lunar eclipses 1900-1999. 147 pages including bibliography and index. AFA, paper.

The third in her series on eclipses. Contents: The nature of eclipses; Interpretation guidelines; The role eclipses play in human development; Eclipse related events; Karmic relationships; Eclipses in the houses. Appendix: Eclipses of the 20th century. 109 pages including bibliography and index. AFA, paper.

Special note: Jansky's Interpreting the Eclipses is out of print. The problem that stops reprints is copyright ownership. My previous notes on the subject were mistaken. Copyright on Jansky's books will not expire anytime soon.

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