Rhodes did fall. 


Late statue of Cecil Rhodes obscuring the view of UCT upper campus.

This is a Sagittarius story, a story about race, racism, colonialial heritage and higher education in South Africa. Since I have Sagittarius rising, come from South Africa and am a graduate from the University of Cape Town, this particular incident really resonated with me.

The story

On 9th March 2015 there was a spontaneous protest at the University of Cape Town concerning the lack of transformation starting with an attack on the symbols and other vestiges  of the colonial past. There was (past tense) a statue of Cecil John Rhodes at the foot of upper campus and students took to venting their wrath against this symbolic and historic statue by smearing it in feces  and calling for its  removal and for progressive transformation policies to be implemented. By the 9th of April the statue was removed.

Cecil John Rhodes : ”The native is to be treated as a child and denied the franchise. We must adopt a system of despotism in our relations with the barbarians of South Africa. I prefer land to niggers.”

Uranus trines Jupiter : Jubilant, victorious protestors.


There is more to bloat about in Sagittarius 

This all happened when Saturn was in Sagittarius, but things have cooled down because Saturn is now retrograde back in Scorpio until it goes direct and crosses back into Sagittarius 19th September this year. Things, however, had been festering at higher institutes of learning in South Africa for some time and there had been numerous incidences here and there that ignited the fires of racial tension and animosity regarding the colonial as well as apartheid eras and acculturated offensive behaviors.

Sagittarius is a fire sign and the mutable of the three starting with Aries cardinal and Leo fixed. Fire signs are quintessentially about identity so things get very heated, passionate, personal and ego complicated in these signs.

Sagittarius, as the last of the fire signs and in the third quadrant of the zodiac, is about our collective identities. It is the identity we share with others implying those external group things like our culture, our heritage, our traditions, our beliefs, our ideals. It concerns also race, ethnicity, and issues that arise from these such as racism, bigotry and xenophobia. Aries represents a rudimentary form of identity where we acknowledge our being and Leo indicates our inner sense of self related more to character. Aries being cardinal activates the life force each day, Leo being fixed suggests difficulty in changing who we are, while with Sagittarius it is worth noting its changeable, mutable nature implying that its concept of identity is not set in stone.

The Sagittarian archetype shows how we broaden our horizons and how we extend our experience and identity beyond the narrow confines of family, tribe and nation. Sagittarius is the meeting place and melting pot of cultures, civilizations and also languages. As Sagittarius also lies opposite Gemini in the corollary  of complementary oppositions, this sign is about learning, but higher intellectualizations, conceptualizations and abstractions. This implies the concept of tertiary education and university.

So when we put all these together – race, culture, colonial heritage, identity, higher education, beliefs, ideals – and with Saturn (structural change, reality, maturation) transiting through Sagittarius, we have the makings of the perfect storm that brought Rhodes down ! It was and still is a contentious debate. Fire signs, after all, are about identity so people take these things seriously  and passionately. My culture, my heritage, my beliefs, my religion – how dare you attack my my my …

Sagittarius is opinionated

Some said the students had behaved reprehensibly, like an uncouth rabble mob wielding  the weapon of feces! How unbecoming in such an institute of privilege! Some whites bewailed an attack against their heritage and acclaimed that the bequeathed fortune of one Cecil John Chappy had built the ivory towers of upper campus, had supported those less fortunate through the Mandela Rhodes Foundation. But how did this British Rhodes chappy amass such a fortune insomuch that he even had an entire country and huge chunk of Africa, former Rhodesia, named after his esquire? Considering the acquisition of such obscene wealth was through colonial conquest, dispossession and outright robbery of other people’s lands and resources, there is hardly any moral high ground to his late beneficiary acts and it’s hardly as if Rhodes himself would have envisioned dark skinned natives making a thing of themselves on the hallowed grounds of the Cape Town University.

So as a former Alumni I’m at peace to have seen The Fall of Rhodes and will be happy to witness the rest of his legacy fall to pieces as well. This time sights being set on Rhodes University in the city of Grahamstown in the Eastern Cape.

Astrology of the event, 9th March 2015:

The signature to this event is a dynamic conjunct of Mars and Uranus in Aries in a beautiful trine to Jupiter. Mars is spontaneous, Mars ignites and intiates. Mars is in its own sign of Aries. Uranus correlates the collective mind, the unified consciousness of the mass of common people. Uranus tends towards breaking old systems, pushing for radical regeneration.

Uranus in Aries has a high correlation to spontaneous protests and collective outbursts. Uranus can be radical and extreme – so this was a real ur-anus feces protest! Jupiter expands what it touches and the trine shows a powerful free flowing energetic connection to Uranus. Jupiter also promotes cultural development and this event took place during the Uranus trine Jupiter period which correlates to rapid (trine) and radical (Uranus) cultural (Jupiter) progress. Jupiter is jovial and jubilant and under this aspect the masses have come out to celebrate various milestones in the collective struggle for social change and equality. At the time of writing and blogging this post we are revisiting this aspect with Jupiter direct where we have seen many a jovial protest supporting Greece, the home of democracy, fighting for its sovereignty and national pride (Jupiter, Leo) against the backdrop of debt and austerity cuts (Saturn Rx  in Scorpio). Equal marriage in the U.S. and Ireland also correlated to this radical meme of cultural shifts.


Astrology chart for the Fall of Rhodes 9 March 2015.


So when Rhodes fell, this Uranus Jupiter trine was emblazoned my Mars. Also, Uranus (deconstruction) was still in a close square to Pluto (transformation, destruction) in Capricorn (established structures). Jupiter was actually reigniting this square because Jupiter was also in an inconjunct to Pluto. Jupiter and Uranus were tight at 14 degrees and Pluto at 15 degrees. Saturn was at 4 degrees Sagittarius stirring up racial and cultural issues where Jupiter (trine Uranus) was refracting the energy of Saturn. The Moon, as usual,  was the trigger to the event basically at 25 degrees Libra (equality) in opposition to Venus (refractor of Libra) which was in turn conjunct  to Uranus , therefore the Moon was brought into opposition to all the planets lined up in Aries – Mars, Uranus, Venus and Jupiter by aspect all teamed up together with Pluto taking the hit and so Rhodes fell all within the space of one month.

By 17 March Uranus had moved into the last of a perfect square to Pluto, we crossed over the equinox and by the time Rhodes fell, the Sun had transversed all the planets in Aries to conjunct Venus and the Moon in Sagittarius was trine to the original position of the Mars/Uranus conjunct!

Incidentally, Rhodes although born a Cancer on July 5, was born with Jupiter in Sagittarius on his South Node (innate attunement to foreign lands and adventure) opposed to Mars (conquest) on the North Node (advised path of life) – so he was born to be an intrepid adventurer, and died in Muizenburg near to Cape Town.

Pondering Sagittarius

Famous S.African cartoonist Zapiiro’s depiction of Rhodes..

With Saturn for the next two years or so transiting through the sign of Sagittarius, the great cultural debate is on! Saturn’s ingress through a sign impels for some kind of structural change, and readjustment of the old, underlying values and foundations. Saturn, master of reality, will poke at the elephant in the room. The elephant of race, culture and beliefs (Sagittarius). Whatever has been festering below the surface, Saturn’s arrival will correlate to its surfacing into reality. Essentially Saturn through Sagittarius will be about collective cultural consolidation and a time of introspection, examination and readjustment of attitudes especially when Jupiter crosses soon into Virgo. Who are we  at this particular time? How do our cultures, religions and ideals  defines us?  How do traditional structures, values and ideas about our received cultures progress into the future of a rapidly changing world (Uranus in Aries)?

Sagittarius likes to predict

When Saturn heads back into Sagittarius by end of September we can expect this political, social and cultural momentum to really pick up steam again. But this meme of race, culture and identity, although exemplified in the Rhodes story where it incorporated the higher educational meme too, is a global issue and it will be the hot potato especially until the end of 2016.

In South Africa it will all be about the colonial and Apartheid heritage and the transformation of cultural and  particularly higher educational institutes.  In Europe it will all be about immigration, refugees and the business of multiculturalism. This will be so too in South Africa because the recent outbreak of anti foreigner and xenophobic violence happened with the early ingress of Saturn into Sagittarius. In America it will be about race issues and rapidly changing demographics. In Asia, it seems it will be about the Rohinya refugees in Mynmar and further troubles between Japan and its neighbours regarding historic understanding of war time agressions.

Especially regarding the European context, Saturn in Sagittarius is following on from the latter days of Pluto in Sagittarius. Pluto entering  Sagittarius in December 1995 saw a big push towards mass (Pluto) immigration (Sagittarius) and the multicultural  ideology. Archetypally Pluto correlates to deep psychological impulses and drives which relentlessly push in a certain direction. Pluto is also a deeply genetic and it could be that its passage through Sagittarius was the seeding of the collective unconscious need to push forward the evolution of humanity towards the creation of a new root race, the amalgamation of all human genetics for the emergence of a more universal humanity demanded for the passage through the age of Aquarius. Pluto can also correlate to hidden or occult agendas. However, during  Pluto’s passage through Sagittarius there was little questioning or even impetus to restrict the drive towards multiculturalism, but soon, with Saturn to travel in the wake of Pluto in Sagittarius, the fruits of this Plutonic transformation will be reaped. A similar thing happened with the information revolution in the latter days of Pluto through Sagittarius and now the focus will be on restricting (Saturn)  content through copyright laws etc. because Sagittarius is also about publishing and broadcasting or how the creative essence of Leo is entered into the collective body.

Regardless, there is no turning back to what used to be before the routing of Pluto. Saturn is more about consolidation, a slowing down and a focus on strengthening the fundamental foundations. Presently there is growing resistance to multiculturalism and unquestioned mass immigration. The last election in the UK, with Saturn in Sagittarius saw a big shift in voting numbers towards anti-immigration candidates and anti-immigration views are still gaining ground. Problems abound here and there with illegal immigrants and refugees and with Uranus in Aries there has been a resurgence of extremist ideology, especially neo nazism as a radical (Urnaus) form of identity (Aries/ fire) with a tendency towards historical revisionism (Saturn in Sagittarius).

Globally, the emerging memes are people of colour wanting an equal and just representation of their culture and a redress of political power and influence, especially over international bodies. From various quarters  there is a general push for redefining cultural and historical narratives and nobody is a better story teller than Sagittarius. Some Caucasian people believe they are fighting a demonization of their heritage, reverse racism and too much acquiescence to immigrant cultures as well as the Islamisization of their ‘Christian’  homelands (Sagittarius is about religion too, so watch out for this one!) and in America the race divide is all too ominous in the face of the Charleston shootings, burning of black churches and the debate around Confederate history and its symbols, especially the flag.

The bigger conversation

There will be four  major aspects patterns concerning Sagittarius and Jupiter over the next few years.

Saturn square to Neptune : 

This interesting and challenging aspect will probably correlate with issues concerning ocean ecosystems foremost but also the print and film media especially regarding copy right laws and the tourist industry, disease break throughs or out breaks.

It could correlate also to  religious reform, extremism  and the growth of new spiritual movements. It represents a weakening of the structures of the current cultural paradigms. Neptune dissolves barriers and structures, sensitizes and tends to promote amalgamation. This aspect calls for greater sensitivity, compassion and awareness. It is the opener to the greater cultural identity debate. Neptune, Pisces and Sagittarius are more about idealism whereas the square from Saturn brings in a more realistic perspective.

  • 27 Nov 2015
  • 18 June 2016

Saturn trine to Uranus:

This is the most dynamic and exciting aspect to look forward too. Uranus represents the new while Saturn the old. Uranus has a similar vibration to the electric dipole of Saturn and therefore they both refract the energy of Aquarius. This aspect represents an important brinksmanship between the old systems and the new paradigm. This aspect occurs half way between the visionary period of 2012 and the collapse of the old world systems scheduled for the Pluto/Saturn/Jupiter conjunct in 2020. Significantly the first direct aspect is Christmas 2016, another on 11/11 of 2017 and the last only in August 2018.

With Uranus in the dynamic, trail blazing sign of Aries trining to Saturn, the old control structures of culture, race and religion will come tumbling down. Saturn is slow, dark, wet and cold and does fair well in fire signs let alone a fire trine! This will be a very exciting period of dramatic and far reaching cultural shifts. Particularly this aspect speaks powerfully for the indigenous peoples, First Nation peoples and guardians of the sacred lands concerning their rights of ownership and stewardship.

  • 25 Dec 2016
  • 19 May 2017
  •  11 Nov 2017
  • 27 Aug 2018

Jupiter square to Saturn: 

Primarily of economic concern, but this aspect will speaks strongly about race and culture with Saturn in Sagittarius and Jupiter in Virgo. Jupiter in Virgo is an opportunity to examine fundamental attitudes and motivating principles. It offers a critical and insightful discourse about race, culture and immigration in aspect to Saturn in Sagittarius. As an earth sign it is structural in nature. Virgo indicates training, disciplines, attitudes and patterns of behavior which naturally and initially flow (sextile) from our nurture indicated by the sign of Cancer.  This aspect occurs in the middle of the bridging aspects of Saturn trine to Uranus, so this dialogue at the spring equinox of 2016 is a carry over from the discourse that starts on 27Nov.  2015 (Neptune square).

The third and last Jupiter Saturn square on 26 May 2016 is particularly powerful because Jupiter will oppose Neptune and therefore we are looking at a Jupiter/Neptune T-square to Saturn in Sagittarius. This day has a powerful esoteric and spiritual resonance, but also speaks about major economic turmoil. It will also be a Moon/Pluto conjunct day with the Sun opposing Mars and Jupiter will be close to trining Pluto as well. This time period is pretty loaded – issues include environmental crises, economic melt downs, oil, Middle East, terrorism, religious extremism, structural breakdowns and major cultural shifts. This is one of those major collective periods similar to the Uranus Pluto squares we’ve experienced since 2008 up until Rhodes fell.

  • ( 4 Aug 2015)
  • 21 March 2016
  • 26 May 2016

Jupiter in Libra opposed to Uranus 

Presently we have been witnessing the Jupiter trine Uranus energy with euphoric break throughs in the gay rights movement as well as jubilant protests against austerity. This next phase of the cycle can expect some more of the same, but the opposition is a lot more powerful and there is a lot of tension that can lead to conflict. Mass protests often key into Uranus aspects, so here we could be looking at major issues to do with social inequalities and protests against military actions and terrorist events. 

 This period could see serious diplomatic (Libra) stand offs and break downs (opposition)  in international relationships and this relates to the potential for major global war and social, economic structural melt down as we approach the Pluto/Saturn/ Jupiter conjunction in Capricorn in 2020. 

Any major cultural shifts at this time would be spearheaded by major technological breakthroughs because all technological milestones mark to the conjuncts, squares and oppositions of Jupiter and Uranus. 

  • 3 March 2017

2 thoughts on “Rhodes did fall. 

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