"At first I thought, 'OH NO. Not more stuff to put
in the chart! I'm confused enough already.' But over the
years, I have come to value the asteroids as a vital part of
- Michael Lutin, Vanity Fair astrologer, author, lecturer and
very funny guy!
In the mid 70's, a whole new cast of astrological players found
themselves appearing on the global astrological stage: four asteroid
goddesses and one mystery body, Chiron. The four asteroid goddesses:
Ceres, Pallas Athene, Vesta and Juno, together with their comet/planetoid
male counterpart Chiron, changed the face of astrology forever.
The pantheon of astrological planets had long since been male
dominated. Out of the twelve (Sun, Moon, Mercury, Mars, Venus,
Jupiter, Saturn, Uranus, Neptune and Pluto), only two were feminine:
Moon and Venus, and the rest mostly archetypes that could swerve
toward the less positive male traits: the potentially selfish,
cold and withholding nature of Saturn; the Plutonic capacity
for ruthlessness, even destruction, and, the excessively over
active Sun that can easily veer toward narcissism.
The appearance of four powerful female goddess archetypes: Ceres
(mother/the Universal Mother); Juno (partner/Queen of Heaven/
Divine Consort); Vesta (sister, High Priestess) and Pallas Athene
(daughter/genius/warrior/Goddess of Wisdom) made a powerful impact
on the previously male dominated astrological kingdom. Chiron,
too, the newest male planetary body, introduced an entirely new
humanitarian and profoundly compassionate mediating male energy.
in the beginning of the 18th century, from the more than 10,000
asteroids in the sky, located in a belt, between
the orbits of Mars and Jupiter, that revolves about every four
years, the Asteroid Goddesses were popularized by New York based
astrologer Eleanor Bach. She has been called "the Mother
of the Asteroids" after she published the first Asteroid
Ephemeris, twenty-five years ago in 1972, during the height of
the Feminist Movement, and three years before the discovery of
The years 2000-2002 marked both the Lunar Return (emotional coming
of age), and the Saturn Return (coming of age of the life purpose)
of the publication of this indispensable ephemeris; so it is
no accident that many are interested in just how to practically
apply the understanding of these asteroids in both their own
natal charts and those of others.
Interpretation of the Asteroid Goddesses
Ceres: the Mother
During a lecture by NCGR (National Council for Geocosmic Research)
Baltimore Chapter VP Mindy Krupp in 1993, I learned for the
first time how to simply interpret the Asteroids Goddesses
in the chart.
I learned, that in a nutshell, Ceres simply represents mother,
as well as all aspects of motherhood, from the perspective
of both the child, the mother, and the way these impulses get
through our own psyches, as individuals*.
In Roman mythology, Ceres, also known in Greek, as Demeter (deriving
from da mater or earth mother) was goddess of agriculture and
the harvest, as well as being the mother of Persephone.
For those who remember the Persephone myth, Persephone was abducted
by Pluto and brought to the underworld where he kept her as
his wife. Her mother Ceres or Demeter was so heartbroken that
she withered up and nearly perished. As Ceres or Demeter was
the goddess of the harvest, this affected all living things
on the earth which also began to die.
The gods concerned for the well-being of the earth, negotiated
with Pluto, and worked out an arrangement whereby Persephone
was allowed to emerge from Pluto's lair and live with her mother
on the earth for half the year. Her mother was so filled with
joy that she recovered, as did all living things. The months
of spring and summer are therefore attributed to the return of
Persephone to her mother. And autumn and winter, the seasons
when Persephone returns, as wife, to Pluto in the underworld.
This myth becomes increasingly important as we explore the role
of Persephone, and the other Dark Asteroid Goddesses impact in
the chart in future articles. Therefore, Ceres, is sometimes
found prominently in the charts of those who have lost a child.
Juno, the Partner
Juno, goddess of marriage and guardian of childbirth, represents
all aspects of partnership, particularly as spouse, and has
a distinctly Scorpionic overtone, due to her tendency towards
jealousy and possessiveness. Juno can also be a marriage
indicator, particularly in synastry, or chart comparison,
when it impacts
another's personal planets, such as Sun, Moon, Venus or Mars
or through timing by transit, progression or return.
The sign that Juno is in, in your chart, also reveals what you
are looking for in any committed sexual or business partnership,
as well as any enduring friendship. And, it can also provide
insight into recurrent relationship patterns, and may suggest
a means of resolving these reoccurring themes, as well.
Despite her husband Zeus or Jupiter's flagrant infidelities
and deceptions, Juno always returned to her husband, personifying
the vow of marriage: for better or worse, in sickness and
in health, 'til death do us part. Therefore, it comes as no surprise
to us, that Juno is prominent in the chart of Hilary Rodham Clinton.
In Hilary's chart, Juno is in the 29th degree of Sagittarius
(sometimes the sign of lawyers/politicians), right on the cusp
of the 7th house of marriage, indicating she is finishing up
a major incarnational cycle associated with marriage and partnership.
Who better has personified, through example, her adherence to
the vows of marriage? Like Hilary Rodham Clinton, long before
meeting Jupiter/Zeus, Juno was a great goddess in her own right
and very much an equal to Jupiter.
Vesta, the Devoted Sister
Vesta corresponds with the archetype of the sister, both
as sibling, and, as a description of one who has taken
a vow of celibacy,
and joined the nunhood. Like the Vestal Virgins who kept
the temple fires burning, she represents egoless devotion
Vesta placements may also indicate dedication to an excess
This meaning of Vesta came as an epiphany to me, as I, who have
throughout my life had periods of extreme workaholism, had never
been able to find any planetary indication of this in my natal
chart. Suddenly, there was Vesta (representing workaholism) smack
dab on my own midheaven exact (representing career or life's
work), illuminating this tendency in high relief.
Pallas, the Daughter or Genius
Pallas Athena or Pallas, is as close to a male energy as
a female can be, embodying the archetype of both warrior
(think of the first-born daughter, of the daughter of a father
who wanted a boy; or the now, somewhat, archaic term of tom
boy.). Pallas represents both warrior energy, and, where
you have a great genius in the chart, but may doubt yourself.
Due to her brilliance at finding patterns, when she is conflicted
by aspect in the chart, we may find learning disabilities, such
as dyslexia; difficulty maintaining harmony in relationships,
or overly aggressive tendencies that may obscure or impede her
Impact in the Natal Chart
In order to understand any new astrological concept, it is
always useful to spend some time working with your own
Noting what sign and house the Asteroids Goddesses are in,
and what major aspects are formed to them. Through working
with your own themes, this will begin to shed light on how
these energies operate for you and what areas of your life
Today, most astrology software provides the option to elect the
inclusion of both the Asteroid Goddesses, and Chiron. I highly
recommend you make this selection, and begin to discover your
own sacred mysteries and ancient wisdom schools of feminine
power and justice. There immersed in your own psyche -- you
may find the Goddess inherent in you, male and female alike
-- waiting to be unleashed, embraced, better understood, and
more potently expressed.
*The mother/daughter challenge of individuation is deeply delved
into in Nancy Friday's popular book of the 70's My Mother/Myself.
More about the Asteroid Goddesses....
*Eleanor Bach's Asteroid Ephemeris
*Mark Pottenger's CCRS Asteroid Program (includes over 10,000
*All by Demeter George: Asteroid Goddesses (also by Douglas Bloch)
*Asteroid Goddess Report Writer- Astrolabe (also by Douglas Bloch)
*Finding Our Way Through the Dark: The Astrology of the Dark
Goddess Mysteries by Demetra George
*Jacob Schwartz's Asteroid Name Encyclopedia and website: Jacob@asteroids.com
*Lee Lehman's Ultimate Asteroid Book
*Dictionary of Minor Planet Names (email@example.com)
*Zip Dobyn's Mutable Dilemna/Asteroid World (www.ccrsdodona.org)
*Roxana Muise's service for calculating asteroid ephemeredes
and personal asteroid positions (firstname.lastname@example.org)