A joint publication of: Astro Logos and Zyntara Publications



December 2006


In this issue:     
Sulpa'e, the return of the crown prince  - one of the many faces of Jupiter in visual astrology

To subscribe or

The Founder of the Contemporary Environmental Movement named -  a look at Jupiter
Special Notices at the end of this newsletter:
      A Master's Degree in A
rchaeoastronomy at Lampeter University in Wales, UK
      Ptolemy's Almagest - free software for working with the stars of the Almagest

VAN Archive - www.Zyntara.com

Last month many readers emailed us with thoughts on our article on The King stands Alone (November, 2006) linking it with the results of the US elections which left President George Bush isolated in the White House. We agree it would seem a very good and interesting expression of the isolated Saturn. Both Darrelyn and myself are constantly in awe of the potency of these sky narratives.

Through our sheer love of this subject, we have produced a limited number of Visual Astrology Newsletter 2007 Desk Calendars. Each month shows the view of the new crescent moon with the constellations. The reverse side of every month gives information about that part of the sky. The calendar is available free of charge to anyone ordering two or more Studyshops from Astro Logos or can be bought separately for £7.95. They are great stocking fillers for Christmas and we do expect to sell out of our small remaining stock of 200 calendars. We love these calendars and if you are enjoying the Visual Astrology Newsletter, we think you will as well.

Sulpa'e,  the return of the crown prince
one of the many faces of Jupiter

Bernadette Brady M.A.

One of the key differences between horoscopic astrology and visual astrology is that when we are looking at the sky, we notice that planets will disappear from view and then reappear as they change their relationship to the sun. Thus if you are looking at a horoscope for mid-December, 2006, you will notice a Jupiter/Mars conjunction in Sagittarius but if you have actually been watching the sky, you will notice something far more important unfolding. Jupiter has been lost from view, and indeed as discussed in last month’s newsletter, the king (Saturn) has been standing alone in the sky. But in mid- December Jupiter will reappear in the early morning light and be seen rising amongst the stars of the Scorpion.  



Left: The sky at dawn on 16 December, 2006, at a latitude of 40 N. Jupiter will be seen rising in the early dawn light as a faint but bright light in the sky. If you are lucky you may even see the red star Antares, the heart of the Scorpion.

To the Babylonians, such a Jupiter (return to visibility) was named Sulpa'e.







To the Babylonians, the return of Jupiter was a time of rejoicing and the new born god (planet) was named Sulpa'e to distinguish it from when Jupiter was rising at any other time of the night when it was called Sagmegar. Jupiter’s other name when it reached culmination was Neheru:

When the stars of Enlil have finished,
The great star shining faintly,
That halves the sky and stays there, is Nibiru
[Jupiter and also written Neheru] [1]

This passage refers to the time when the stars in the northern sky have faded in the dawn light but the great star Jupiter can still be seen shining faintly while standing in the middle of the sky, on the meridian or the MC (van der Waerden, 1949). We will explore Jupiter as Neheru in later newsletters as this is something that horoscopic astrology totally ignores. For now we are going to explore Jupiter as Sulpa’e.

To be honest, it is difficult to discover what the nuances of these three different names of Sulpa’e, Sagmegar and Neheru imply about the meaning of Jupiter in its different visible stages but generally Jupiter as Sulpa’e (the visual return of Jupiter to the sky) was considered a blessing.

But this Sulpa’e who comes to us in December, 2006, is different. As we have explored in other newsletters, Jupiter is symbolic of a powerful crown prince or military general who steps onto the world stage. Now all this year Jupiter has been supportive of the king's activities but now, in his new guise as Sulpa’e, he rises with Nergal (Mars) and they both re-appear amongst the stars of the great Scorpion. Mars and Jupiter together are seen as a difficult conjunction, as Nabu-iqusa, a sixth century Babylonian astrology/priest, points out : 

 If Jupiter stands in front of Mars: there will be barley; animals or a large army will fall. [2]

Above: image of a astrologer

But adding to this sky narrative is the meaning of the stars of the Scorpion. Nergal  (below) in the stars of the Scorpion is seen as difficult, going by this letter to an Assyrian king:

If Nergal stands in Scorpius: a strong
enemy will carry off the land; Enlil
[the king in the north] will give his weapons to the enemy; few enemy troops
will defeat my numerous troops.

So in reading the sky narrative, in mid-December we will have Sulpa’e stepping onto the world stage (Jupiter becomes visible in the pre-dawn light) with anger in his heart and war on his mind (with Mars in the stars of the Scorpion), at the time when the king (Saturn) stands alone (which many readers have suggested is reflected in President Bush’s isolation due to the loss of both houses of parliament in the US elections last month).

Jupiter as Sulpa’e amongst the stars of Scorpio will occur, of course, every twelve years, but the addition of Mars makes this event far less frequent. Indeed in searching back using both Jigsaw and Starlight over the last thousand years, I have found only three other such times.

Sulpa'e in 1342
In December, 1342, Jupiter re-appeared in the early morning light with Mars, and the king (Saturn) was not visible. At this time Estonia has been conquered by crusaders from Denmark and Germany and the new rulers imposed such heavy taxes and duties that gradually parts of the indigenous population were reduced to serfs. As Sulpa’e linked with Mars in the stars of the Scorpion, the population went into revolt against the Danish Catholics. This revolt eventually lead to what became known as “St George’s Night” in April 1343. This uprising is arguably the single most notable uprising by Estonian-speakers against the local German-speaking upper class who dominated Estonia from 13th to early 20th century.  

Sulpa'e in 1579
The next occurrence of this combination was in December, 1579.  This was similar to 1342, as Sulpa’e appeared with Nergal (Mars) and there was no visible Saturn in the sky. At this time the Portuguese king, the old Cardinal-King Henry, died with no heir. His death resulted in a power vacuum and a long struggle which was eventually won by the Spanish who claimed the throne of Portugal at the Battle of Alcântara bringing Portugal under its rulership. 

Sulpa'e in 1769
Lastly in December, 1769, another country suffered from unfair taxation. At this time Saturn (the king) was as it is now, visible in the sky, so this is the sky narrative of a rebellion or clash with an established power.

By late 1769 tension was rising in the new British colony of New York. Bowing to pressure from Britain, the New York Assembly had voted to provide £2000 to provide food and shelter to British troops stationed there. The people were infuriated, believing the Assembly had betrayed the inhabitants of the new colony. Indeed this £2000 acted as a catalysis and by January, 1770, violence had broken out between the British soldiers garrisoned in New York and the local patriots. This is considered by many to be the first steps, or beginning, of the American War of Independence some five years later.

Sulpa'e in 2006
Once again Sulpa’e is linked with Nergal in the stars of Scorpio. A king in isolation will be challenged. This challenge may not show its hand until early next year, and it will probably be dismissed and underestimated by the establishment powers. However, what is suggested is that history will look back on the events of December, 2006, and early 2007 and label this time as the beginning of the end of a establishment power. In 1342 it was the fate of Estonia who then endured over 700 years of Danish/German rule. In 1579 it was the end of self rule for Portugal. In 1769 it was a challenge to Britain’s claim to America. So in 2006, whose turn will it be?  We may not know the answer to this question for a few years but this, right now, is where it begins.   

Ending Note: Such a Sulpa'e does not seem good for achieving great things in one's life. I scanned over 3,000 charts of famous people to see who was born with a Sulpa'e amongst the stars of the Scorpion and found not a single famous chart. Look in your own files for a Jupiter in early degrees of Sagittarius while the Sun is in late degrees of Sagittarius and see what you find. It would seem that such a Sulpa'e in a natal chart is not about achievement on the world stage but it may be achievement on a more anonymous level. After all, we do not know the names of the first patriots in New York to say enough is enough to the British but we have certainly seen and felt the results of their actions!

 [1] van der Waerden, B.L. (1949) “Babylonian Astronomy.II. The Thirty-Six Stars” in Journal of Near Eastern Studies, Vol 8, No.1. pp 6-26, 12
  Hunger, Herman. (1992). Astrological Reports to Assyrian Kings. Helsinki, Finland: Helsinki University Press. pg.160.

[3] op.cit. pg 279.


The Founder of the Contemporary Environmental
Movement named, a look at Jupiter

Darrelyn Gunzburg

Continuing on with the theme of Jupiter, a woman was named this week as the leading environmental campaigner of all time (BBC News, 1st December) and her Jupiter reveals a story. Rachel Carson (born 27 May, 1907 in Springdale, Pennsylvania) was honoured this week for her book, Silent Spring, written in 1962 in the face of the rising environmental disaster after World War II,

Carson’s background in biology and zoology and her love of writing found a happy marriage when she obtained a job writing radio scripts for the US Fisheries and Wildlife Service during the Depression. She wrote her first book, The Sea Around Us, in 1941, describing the struggle for life in the ocean, and whilst a critical success, it did not sell well. Two more books followed where she showed her rare skill of being able to write about complicated scientific information in moving, lyrical prose. The eventual success of The Sea Around Us finally enabled her to resign from government service in 1952 and devote herself to her writing.

Deeply disturbed by the profligate use of synthetic chemical pesticides after World War II, Carson began to pen her ground breaking work, Silent Spring.

Carson has Jupiter in Cancer (exalted) in opposition to Mars in Capricorn (exalted). One can suggest that this opposition is the engine room of her chart providing conflict, drive and determination particularly when we see that she also has Neptune and Uranus involved in the pattern. However, the Jupiter-Mars is the more personal side of this opposition, so let's look at what stars are in paran to this key part of her chart.



Starlight says of Jupiter in paran with with the royal star Fomalhaut (see the November Newsletter):   
               Charismatic, or to have a philosophical cause, and a love of the classics

And in paran with her Mars was Pollux in Gemini which is defined in Starlight as:
Expressing unpopular or even dangerous opinions

Carson’s desire to express a philosophical cause through her writing was indeed to prove both unpopular and a dangerous opinion. For big businesses who had interests in chemicals, reacted strongly to her suggestion in Silent Spring that the totally eradication of all insect life would result not only in the loss of bird life (hence the title of the book) but the breakdown of the entire environment. She was slandered and her scientific credentials were undermined and many other scientists dismissed her as an amateur, a hysterical spinster and a sensationalist.

Yet the book fired and inspired the public and within months, government policy was changing.

Because of Carson’s profound effect on all of us, I also had a look at her Jupiter through Starlight’s mundane parans which is a way of looking at a person’s relationship to larger global issues. (For those of you who own Starlight, simple select “Mundane Parans” under the Text 1 or Text 2 button). Rachel Carson’s Jupiter gave the following mundane parans:

Jupiter rising when Betelgeuse is rising: Being confident in actions
setting when Acumen is rising:  Risk-taking due to a social conscience
on the Nadir when Fomalhaut is rising: The grand, or big vision

These need no additional comment but what I did notice, also under her mundane parans, was a star in paran relationship to her Pluto - Ras Alhague, the head of Ophiuchus and the great healer in the sky. Brady says of this combination in Starlight: “The wisdom of one influences many”. Indeed we have all benefited from the wisdom of Rachel Carson.                           

The results of the public’s response to Silent Spring was that Rachel Carson was invited to speak before a Senate scientific committee, and in 1972 the Government publicly accepted the risks that DDT posed to the environment and human health and its use was stopped.

Here we see the results of Carson being confident in her actions (Jupiter in paran with Betelgeuse), taking a risk and following her social conscious (Jupiter in paran with Acumen) and seeing the grand vision (Jupiter in paran with Fomalhaut), for it allowed her to express what may have appeared to be an unpopular position (Mars in paran with Pollux). Yet with the Royal Star Fomalhaut connected with her Jupiter, she was promised success as long as she does not manipulate her success for personal glorification.

Unfortunately Carson did not live to see the results of the change of government policy for she died from breast cancer 14 April, 1964, just two years after the book was published. Nevertheless her vision lives on and many are aware that it is as relevant today as it was when she wrote it.


New MA Course in Archaeoastronomy and Landscape Archaeology

If you love visual astrology, perhaps you would also enjoy learning to look at the sky through the eyes of prehistoric people. This is what the subject of archaeoastronomy is about - working out how ancient sites such as stone circles were orientated or aligned to the sun, moon and stars.
The first MA in this subject at a British university will start in March 2007 at Lampeter University in Wales (image right). It will be a part-time course run over three years. Students will attend once a term in the first two years for either a long weekend or a week, completing assignments afterwards from home. The dissertation for the MA will then be written in the third year. The course will be run by the Archaeology department, with Robin Heath taking charge of the archaeoastronomy.
Applications are welcome from students with either an arts or a science background. This is an opportunity to take part in a pioneering new course with an emphasis on practical field study. Further details and dates are on the Lampeter University website -     


and if you have any further queries please contact Irene Earis at Lampeter University on:  i.earis@lamp.ac.uk


The Almagest Stars

Ernie Wright as written a free downloadable Windows program, Almagest Stars, that plots the stars of
the Almagest catalogue.  Description and link here:


We have not yet explored the above program but you may enjoy looking at the sky through Ptolemy's eyes. However for Starlight users, you can switch on Ptolemy's star descriptions for the Sky Maps by going to "Sky Map options" and under Star Labels select "Ptolemy Descriptions".

When we were designing and building Starlight we did a lot of work firstly in translating Ptolemy's star catalogue from several versions of the Almagest and then secondly, not only including all his stars in Starlight's star catalogue but we also ensured that the stick figures in the sky maps was true to Ptolemy's descriptions. In short, for those of you who own Starlight, look at any sky map and make sure the stick figures are turned on and you are looking at Ptolemy's sky.    

Receiving this newsletter:

Some readers complain that they do not receive the newsletter but with new filtering systems monitoring emails, some of the people who wish to receive this newsletter are being blocked by internet email filters. Thus in order to ensure that you are able to continue to receive this newsletter, please add our email to your address book: newsletter@Zyntara.com  Thank you.


The software that allows you to work with the whole sky in your astrology is Starlight and it can be explored on the Zyntara home page where there are also online tutorials.