2014 has not been a great year for air travel. Since March, when Malaysia Air flight MH 370 went missing a few hours after take-off, and still remains to be found, we have witnessed a number of fatal accidents that have killed nearly 762 people so far this year, including another Malaysian Air flight MH17, which was shot down over the Ukraine in mid-July.
With 2014 drawing to a close, another aviation mystery began to unfold as a second plane went missing from the same region of the world under similar circumstances, which seems bizarre, to say the least!
Although the plane has since been found off the coast of Borneo, which has made the original blog I was working on somewhat redundant, I thought it was still worth having a look at the event chart of the plane’s take-off to see what the astrology might reveal about what precisely could have happened to the aircraft, as well as put the theories I used on the horary chart of flight MH370 to the test to see whether they appear to work or not in terms of locating the whereabouts of phenomena such as lost aircraft.
According to news reports, the doomed AirAsia flight QZ8501 took off at 05h35 local time on the morning of Sunday, the 28th of December from Surabaya airport for Singapore. After a brief exchange with air traffic control in Indonesia at 06h12, it disappeared from both satellite and radar shortly after 06h14 local time whilst flying over the Javan sea.
So, could the take-off chart reveal any clues as to what precisely may have happened?
Strangely, the chart bears more than a few similarities to that of the horary chart that I drew up for MH370, which you can see in my blog for March 2014.
First of all, it has Sagittarius rising again, which as I pointed out at the time, is radical for a plane undertaking an international flight, since Sagittarius rules long distance travel and foreign relations. AirAsia flight QZ8501 was travelling from Surabaya in Indonesia to Singapore, a trip that crosses international borders and usually takes just over two hours to complete. This makes Jupiter in Leo the main signifier for the aircraft.
As with the MH370 chart, Jupiter is located in the 8th house, which in traditional astrology, was considered to be the house signifying death. Jupiter also happens to be retrograde, weakening it somewhat. Although in March, Jupiter was direct, it had only just emerged from a three month retrograde spell two days’ previously on March the 6th, making it still not quite ‘up to speed’, which I thought may have dulled its usually highly beneficial influence. The retrograde state of Jupiter could suggest that the plane may perhaps have been ill-equipped or somehow not quite prepared enough to deal with whatever problems it encountered, but we will only be able to tell this once crash investigators have determined what went wrong with it.
Unlike March, when Jupiter was in Cancer, Jupiter was in the sign of Leo, a fire sign, which could be significant. Jupiter, as many people know from ancient mythology, was the god of thunder, and on this particular occasion, we know that, shortly before air traffic control lost contact with the plane at 06h16, the pilot had radioed in, saying that they were flying through a very bad thunder storm and asked for permission to change course and climb in altitude in order to avoid it. In this chart, Jupiter is very close to a quincunx with Venus in Capricorn in the first house, which usually indicates the need for an adjustment of some kind. Perhaps this points to an adjustment of course and altitude?
In terms of direction, Jupiter’s position in the 8th house, close to the cusp of the 9th puts it in the south-west quarter of the sky. However, if we look at direction by sign, then we get a north-westerly direction, which fits with the plane’s planned trajectory: we know that that the passenger jet was traveling in a north-westerly direction towards Singapore, but had later requested a diversion from the normal route, turning slightly left, i.e. further westwards to try and avoid the huge stormfront in its path. This fits with the position of Jupiter in Leo, which would put it in the NNW sector of the chart. Clearly, then, direction by sign, rather than house, seems more appropriate here, as it also proved to be with flight MH370.
Uranus-Pluto and the Cardinal Cross
The other similarity with the MH370 chart is that Pluto and Uranus are once again in orb of a square to each other. This is an especially nasty and intense configuration, bringing together the symbol of death, rebirth and irreversible change (Pluto) with the outer planet associated with cutting, severing and sudden freak occurrences such as explosions as well as technology and electricity (Uranus). Although a very ‘modern’ planet, Uranus is largely considered malefic by many traditional astrologers, perhaps because it was discovered during the time of the French revolution, when chaos, disruption and beheading reigned – something that seems to have made a comeback in recent years amongst jihadi terrorist organisations.
It should pointed out that these types of difficult meetings between two of the outer planets are relatively rare – although we are currently going through a five year spell in which these two heavenly bodies clash approximately twice a year, we have not experienced anything like it since the 1960’s. You can read more about the most recent stages of this five-year transit on the Mountain Astrologer website.
On both occasions, the square between Uranus & Pluto happened to be extending outwards, a bit like a black hole, to suck in nearby phenomena orbiting in the region. Back in March 2014, Uranus and Pluto happened to form part of a T-square to Jupiter. In December, rather than implicating Jupiter, these two ‘death stars’ happened to form a T-square with the lunar nodes.
Known in Asian astrology as the head and tail of the dragon – the axis where the Sun & Moon cross orbits, the plane where eclipses happen. In astrology, these have come to be interpreted slightly differently. Some see them as the hand of fate and a symbol of karma/reincarnation, while those less inclined to an evolutionary perspective tend to see them as representative of the ‘herd’ mentality of humanity as a collective. In this case, I think it is significant that the nodes are in Aries and Libra – the cardinal signs, which have been active in stirring things up since the Cardinal Grand Cross of 2010. Aries is currently also the zodiac sign through which Uranus is currently transiting, and thus far, it seems to have been associated with an inordinate number of riots, wars, demonstrations, flash violence and terrorist attacks, many fought in the name of social justice and the need to address political/economic inequalities. The last time we saw a flare-up of this cardinal energy was in April 2014 when Uranus and Pluto again clashed swords amidst another manifestation of the cardinal grand cross, peaking on April the 22nd, and it was during the build-up to this exceptionally challenging event that flight MH370 went missing.
I commented last week that we currently have a stellium of planets in Capricorn, flanking Pluto, that are one by one, re-activating the most recent incarnation of this dreadful planetary combination, which peaked for the seventh time in five years on December 15 2014 – the day of the Sydney Siege. It therefore seems strangely and spookily in keeping with this cosmic pattern that, just at the juncture in December 2014 when the cardinal planets are once again constellating around latest pass of the Uranus-Pluto square, another airline tragedy unfolds.
In the AirAsia chart, the Capricorn stellium is situated in the first house, indicating that each of the planets reflects something about the conditions of the plane/flight at the time of its fateful journey.
One of the planets involved this stellium was Mercury, planet of journeys and transportation, which entered the fray of the Uranus-Pluto square on Christmas Day when it squared Uranus, which I think contributed to the travel chaos UK commuters experienced over the Christmas break that left many people stranded, sometimes overnight, just as temperatures began to plummet.
In this chart, Mercury is the ruler of the Descendant and the Midheaven – two of the angles, which usually indicate significance or prominence–and happens to be separating from a conjunction to Pluto, Lord of the 12th house (death, hospitalisation and oblivion). Located in this house is another malefic planet – Saturn, ruler of Capricorn, and therefore, all the planets located in that sign in the first house – which may not be a great omen overall.
Now, Mercury is the natural ruler of transport, travel and communications, and being in the first house, it is also a co-signifier of the plane. In this case, it may represent the aircraft tracking and communications systems, which allow contact with others (DS). It could also perhaps represent the plane’s course or route, since the Midheaven, which in this chart is ruled by Mercury, can be interpreted as the captain of the ship, or pilot of the plane – and it is he who determines the plane’s trajectory. Pluto, is amongst other things, symbolically associated with invisibility or disappearances, so it may be significant that Pluto and Mercury are so close, given that communications just suddenly seem to stop at around 06h15, with the aircraft appearing to just disappear without a trace from the screens of all tracking devices at around 07h24 local time. Many wonder why the pilot made no distress call, and the lack of communications by the pilot (Mercury, ruler of MC conjunct Pluto) seems to fit this scenario – he was probably too busy trying to save the aircraft to relay what was happening to ground control?
The Sun, located at around 5 degrees Capricorn, forms the outermost flank of the stellium. Interestingly, Pluto happens to be within 8 degrees of the Sun, which technically puts it under the sunbeams, a condition that is said to weaken the influence of a planet, and therefore, the condition of the plane. The Sun also rules the sign of Leo, which is the sector of the zodiac where Jupiter, primary significator of the plane, was found. Could glare from the rising sun have temporarily blinded the pilot, or somehow contributed to what happened? I guess it can’t be ruled out altogether…
Now that we have a sense of where the plane was before the crash, let’s look at what may have happened next by examining approaching aspects amongst the key planetary players.
First up: Jupiter. We have already discussed the fact that Jupiter was approaching a quincunx to Venus, which probably indicates the diversion/adjustment that he had to make to turn the plane away from the storm. The next aspect is more sinister: an approaching opposition with Mars, the lesser malefic.
This could represent the encounter with what looks on weather maps to have been a violent supercell thunder storm. Many experts now think that this violent storm may have indirectly caused the plane to stall and crash into the sea, in a scenario similar to that which led to the downing of Air France flight AF447 back in 2009. This aspect, then is pretty key to what may have happened.
Now that the plane has been discovered quite close to the site of its last known position[i], it does look as though the pilot may have encountered a large and violent (Mars) supercell thunder storm (Jupiter) measuring some 600kms across, through which it tried to fly. However, like Icarus who got too close to the sun, flying upwards through such bad conditions can sometimes overtax the engines, or make them lose power (Sun-Pluto), possibly leading to a stall and then, like Icarus, a fall from the sky.
Mars is the ruler of Aries, which is where we find Uranus, as well as the south node, the tail of the dragon, which, however you interpret it, is considered to be the less fortunate of the two nodes. Mercury, symbolic of the pilot, is just separating from a square to the nodes, an omen that the fates are not with him on this occasion. The opposite node, the north node, is situated at 15 and a half degrees in Libra, and is therefore considered to be in the via combusta, a part of the sky associated with the underworld. You can read more about this in my previous column on the death of Whitney Houston. Ruler of Libra is Venus in Capricorn, also located in the 1st house and a member of the stellium.
By itself, the Jupiter-Mars opposition does not look good for the plane. If we then factor in Mercury’s square to the nodes, which may have been the denial by air traffic control for the plane to ascend to 38,000 feet because of other air traffic in the area, we have the recipe for what may have been a bad decision by the pilot to attempt to ascend through the storm anyway. It may also be significant that both Uranus, ruler of the third house of communications, and Pluto are also approaching that formidable T-square to the nodal axis., which does seem to indicate stressful, unforeseen, sometimes life-threatening circumstances that are beyond one’s control. Clearly, the odds were against the pilot none of these aspects are positive, so we can hardly expect good news from them.
To top it all off, the Moon, often significant in horary charts, is in Pisces and has recently made a conjunction to Neptune, ruler of the sea, emphasising the ocean and lots of water. Key is the fact that she rules the 8th house in this chart – the house where Jupiter (the plane) is located – and a house which, as I have already mentioned elsewhere, is strongly associated with death.
In this chart, the Moon is separating from a square with the Ascendant, which is the primary significator of the aircraft towards an opposition with the Midheaven, representative of the pilot. This is because she is heading for a conjunction with the IC, which, as I relayed in my article about MH370, can be another significator of death, or the end of the matter. Given that the Moon will soon change signs, it also suggests that it is she who signifies the end of the matter.
Sadly, her sign and position testify to what we now know to be true – that the plane and its passengers ended up in a watery grave beneath the waves of the Javan Sea. Further reinforcing the Piscean/fishy end to this sad tale is the report that it was a local fisherman who found the wreckage of the plane floating in the waters near the Tuju islands just off the coast of Borneo, and later reported it to the authorities.
Final Position of Aircraft
So, how far off course was the plane, and is this reflected in the chart? The most important aspect in this chart is the approaching opposition between Mars and Jupiter, which at the time of take-off, was just over 4 degrees (4 degrees 11 minutes) from exactitude. This equates to a distance in miles of 4 x ¼ mile (Leo and Aquarius are fixed signs, so a quarter mile is considered), which is just 1 mile or so off course, according to Derek Appleby’s method.
Ivy Goldstein-Jacobson uses another method, which equates to: the degree of the significator (22) x 3 miles for a planet located in a succeedent house in a chart with a southerly latitude, which = 66 miles. This number must then be multiplied by the number of degrees separating it from the Moon (in this case, 142 degrees), which comes to a rather ridiculous 9372 miles. As Derek Appleby points out, “…this is probably too far away to judge distance accurately.” No kidding!
A Rethink about Distance Calculation
However, according to the authorities, the wreckage was around 66 miles from the plane’s last known location, somewhat further than the first method of calculation denoted and a lot less than 9000-odd miles, so a recalculation may be in order here!
This may also be why we were fell rather short of where flight MH370 was thought to be located in the southern Indian Ocean, based on the search areas combed between March 30 and April 28, although it remains to be seen whether or not the plane did actually fly south, as the satellite data indicates, or whether it exploded and fell from the sky over the Andaman Sea, close to the initial search areas of March 8-15, where the plane was last detected by radar.[ii]
Of course, it may well be that we have chosen the wrong indicator for our locational data – perhaps the position of the applying planet may be more appropriate? In this case, we are dealing with Mars in Aquarius in the second house, giving a SSE direction (Aquarius), which is correct, but the distance calculations remain the same.
What if, instead, we used the actual zodiac degrees of our chosen significator but base direction on sign? If we choose Jupiter in Leo, then this would equal 22.02 degrees x 3 miles (succeedant house in southerly latitude) = EXACTLY 66! Here, we may have found our answer. But then the dircetion would be NNW? But, if we consider the position of Jupiter – retrograde in Leo – i.e. moving backwards from its NNW position, then it does make sense that the debris was found a few miles to the south (i.e. backwards) of where the plane was last detected on radar.
If this is correct, then the calculation for the final position of flight MH370 would in fact be as follows:
Jupiter: 10.5 degrees of Cancer x 3 miles (succeedant house in southerly latitude) = 31 miles in a northerly direction from its last detection point, if you base your directions on signs, and not house position.
However, if it is house position you are using, then the direction is 31 miles WSW…Food for thought…
Whatever we discover in the days and weeks to come will certainly help us to clarify our techniques for future use, but they will not change the tragic facts of the situation for those relatives of the passengers who have lost family members and loved ones. To the, I send my heartfelt sympathy and hope this is article does not prove too distressing for anyone.
Going forward, though, it is clear that the current spate of Uranus-Pluto squares are no joke, and that the periods around them should be navigated with care, especially for those people who have prominent fixed signs or planets located at around 15-19 degrees in their natal charts. Below is a fairly strong warning from mundane astrologer, Louis Acker, about what could lie ahead in the spring:
The seventh and last Uranus-Pluto square will be March 17, 2015. Mars in Aries conjunct Uranus and square Pluto between March 8 and 15, 2015 activates this last Uranus-Pluto square. This is an explosive, highly dangerous combination that could precipitate assassinations, riots, revolution, war, bombings, and industrial accidents.[iii]
As it happens, this extremely intense transit will occur near to a solar eclipse, which I will cover, along with more pleasant transits, in my Astro-Insights for January 2015, which will be put up in the next few days. Visit astro-sphere.com for further details. Happy New Year, everyone.
 See the coverage on the Independent website, which discusses the weather conditions present at the time of the plane’s disappearances, as well as hypothetical scenarios about how these could have contributed to a crash: http://www.telegraph.co.uk/news/worldnews/asia/indonesia/11315486/Air-Asia-missing-plane-Sunday-December-28-as-it-happened.html
[i] See map at New York Times website: http://www.nytimes.com/interactive/2014/12/28/world/asia/airasia-flight-qz8501-map.html?_r=0
[ii] See map of possible lfight paths on NY Times website: http://www.nytimes.com/interactive/2014/03/17/world/asia/search-for-flight-370.html