Trump by Numbers
A Demonstration of Arithmology in the Birthchart
unpublished / written January 2017
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Mathematicians and scientists routinely use numbers to measure the quantifiable parameters of the so-called objective world, never imagining that numbers could serve any other purpose. Yet some form of number was known to exist before mathematics or science, hinting at an a priori function more fundamental than these applications. This deeper sense of number was discussed by Carl Jung, who said (1):
I incline to the view that numbers were as much found as invented, and that in consequence, they possess a relative autonomy analogous to that of the archetypes. They would then have, in common with the latter, the quality of being pre-existent to consciousness, and hence, on occasion, of conditioning it rather than being conditioned by it . . . Accordingly, it would seem that natural numbers have an archetypal character.
Astrology and the Archetypal Power of Numbers
The archetypal sense of numbers was also known to Pythagoras, who developed it into a cogent system of spiritual understanding, which integrated Egyptian, Babylonian, Chaldean, Phoenician, Brahmanic, Hebrew, Greek, Zoroastrian, and Hyperborean (pre-Celtic British) mystery teachings, then passed it on through a succession of torch bearers, including Plato. Pythagoras’ teachings about number were written down by Neoplatonist teacher Iamblichus of Chalcis (c. 245 – c. 325 CE) in a book called The Theology of Arithmetic: On the Mystical, Mathematical and Cosmological Symbolism of the First Ten Numbers, translated into English by Robin Waterfield. This work is generally believed to be an accurate reflection of Pythagoras’ teachings and, in turn, became the source for my musings about number in Astrology and the Archetypal Power of Numbers, Part One.
Pythagorean number theory – called arithmology by those who practiced it – was not, strictly speaking, presented in an astrological context by Pythagoras and his followers. Instead, each number was associated with multiple deities from Greek mythology, as well as numerous secondary characters, and by correlation with the planetary references of astrology. Both mythology and astrology were part of a mythopoetic worldview prevalent during the time of Pythagoras, and his theories were inescapably marinated in this worldview. Within this larger context, arithmology considers the metaphorical implications of the mathematical properties of number, and has identifiable mythological and astrological correlates.
Although few astrologers would reference arithmological principles in describing how astrology works, they are nonetheless inherent in the astrological language. When astrologers speak of the twelve signs, the twelve houses, the four elements, the four angles of the chart, the three modalities, the two polarities – masculine and feminine – and so on, they are speaking about numbers in an implied arithmological sense. In addition, there are less obvious arithmological associations to be made when considering the duration of planetary cycles, the harmonic division of the whole circle that gives rise to aspects between planets, the overall shape and structure of the whole birthchart and the association of various planets with various deities through which various numbers are evoked. Astrology and the Archetypal Power of Numbers, Part Two, I have made these underlying arithmological principles more explicit.
The Archetypal Power of Numbers Applied
Astrology and the Archetypal Power of Numbers, Part Two contains numerous examples and case studies in which arithmological principles are revealed to be at work within a birthchart. In my book, I speak of each number as being the archetypal principle at work within a Number Realm ascribed to it, in order to make the point that the presence of the numbers – like the presence of Spirit, or the One, to which they refer – is protean and multidimensional. The Pythagoreans considered the numbers (and by extension the Number Realms they occupy) not as sequential, but as co-existing in space and time, reflecting various dimensions of the One simultaneously at play within our individual and collective experience.
Having said that, in each given birthchart, and at each moment of time, various dimensions of number, and the Number Realms that encompass them, come to the fore, while others recede into the background. When three or more planets that can be associated with a given number come together by mutual aspect in an identifiable astrological pattern, they point to an identifiable Number Realm signature.
Given that the numbers in general represent an ongoing panoply of evolutionary forces that shape and reshape the world in which we live, we might then understand individuals from this perspective as more or less conscious agents, in whom the Number Realms that are primary find a human vehicle for expression. Whether or not we are aware of playing a larger function in the grand scheme of things, the potential – encoded in the arithmology of the birthchart – is always there. Certainly when someone rises to power as a world leader, or plays a prominent role in changing the culture in some way, a strong Number Realm signature can tell us something about the nature of the evolutionary function a given soul is playing on the larger world stage.
In my book, I elaborate the astrological mechanisms by which various Number Realms find expression in various souls whose charts have strong Number Realm signatures. For purposes of this article, I will just mention a few of the most important principles that are relevant to an arithmological discussion of the chart at hand. Having just finished this book as Donald Trump was being elected President in the US, I was naturally curious to apply what I had learned to his chart (not included in my book). In this article, I will share some of this exploration with you. A full explanation of Trump’s – or any chart – in terms of numbers would be beyond the scope of this article, but I at least hope to demonstrate the value of this approach through a few poignant observations.
In particular, I will begin by simply noting that, by far, the strongest Number Realm signature in Donald Trump’s chart points to the Realm of Two, and thus as he moves into position as US president, Donald Trump can be considered an evolutionary representative of and agent in this Number Realm. In this article, I will discuss what this means, then demonstrate how Trump’s Realm of Two signature is constructed astrologically and show how various dimensions of the signature are expressed in Trump’s political personality.
Trump in the Realm of Two
The Realm of Two is where we must come to terms with the duality inherent within the embodied world. Here we encounter all the opposites – light and dark, male and female, hot and cold, self and other – and must enter into relationship with everything we think we are not. In Jungian terms, the Realm of Two is where we engage the shadow – all those places within ourselves that are wounded, rejected, judged unworthy, denied or neglected – in order to reclaim our essential Wholeness, or the Unity of the One. Collectively, the Realm of Two is where we must come to terms with the apparent existence of evil and our fears of the Other in all its many forms and guises.
Here, it is not hard to see how a man elected largely because of fear and mistrust of entrenched government bureaucracies, Wall Street insiders, the loss of white male privilege to women and minorities, Islamic terrorism, and the immigration of foreigners who steal American jobs, might represent the Realm of Two, where such divisions between Us and Them are the central issue.
Along what I call the path of equality through the Realm of Two – where both sides of any polarity are recognized to be essential to the integrity of the whole – co-creative synergy, in which the whole is more than the sum of its parts is possible. Trump does not appear to be walking this path. The other possibility in the Realm of Two is the path of inequality – which generally leads to conflict, catastrophe, pain and suffering, and a general backslide into the Realm of Zero, experienced as an archetypal Abyss.
An article in the BBC news (2) references the “paranoid style in American politics” coined by the late historian Richard Hofstadter to describe Trump’s likely approach to his new position of power. The paranoid style generally demonizes an Enemy – often justified by the liberal adoption of conspiracy theory – then rallies forces of opposition to it. The author notes that this particular style in the use of power is a theme pervasive throughout US history – from the genocidal treatment of indigenous Americans, to the Salem witch trials, to the slavery of black African Americans culminating in Civil War, to the incarceration of Japanese Americans in World War II, to the McCarthy era and Cold War fear of communists, to the post-911 War on Terror. In short, everywhere throughout our history where we have projected our collective shadow unto some foreign or domestic enemy, we have collectively stepped into a path of inequality through the Realm of Two. Donald Trump’s election is another step along this path, outcome yet to be determined, but with a bit of archetypal handwriting already on the wall.
As Mother Jones puts it (3):
Never before has a presidential campaign, from its paranoid messaging to its white nationalist backers, been rooted so deeply in the fever swamps of the right-wing psyche . . . Trump has embraced and normalized the political fringe in unprecedented ways – and that could have far-reaching effects.
The Realm of Two and the Full Moon Eclipse
Trump’s Realm of Two pattern begins with the fact that he was born at the Full Moon in Sagittarius during a total lunar eclipse (with Sun and Moon conjunct his lunar Nodes) (4).
Full Moon Eclipse in the Realm of Two
The opposition – or 2nd harmonic – in general can be an indicator of Realm of Two activity, but more to the point in this instance is the fact that this particular opposition takes place between Sun and Moon. The arithmologists associated the Realm of Two with a broad pantheon of goddesses generally those subsumed under the astrological auspices of the Moon – and the archetypal Feminine (feelings, sensory experiences, intuition and imagination, caring, compassion, family, community, ecological sensibilities, attunement to the rhythms of the natural world, and the Feminine mysteries of birth, life, death and rebirth).
The lunar Dyad in turn was contrasted to the solar Monad. The lunar Dyad was understood by the arithmologists to be necessary to the furthering of evolutionary purposes, since the solar Monad – or the One – could not become the Many except through the Two. Yet, the patriarchal arithmologists did not entirely trust it, because it was not only a source of embodied life, but also at times a dark force capable of inducing mystical entrancement, irrational lunacy, capricious unpredictability, and even death. Although necessary to further the process that led out of the Abyss into the possibility of becoming, the Moon also was thought to embody a shadowy side, a tricksterish malevolence, and a subterranean power to be feared.
These fears were heightened during the Full Moon, when the power of the Moon was at its peak. The Full Moon – marked astrologically by opposition between Sun and Moon – has long been associated with both poetic inspiration and madness; illumination and delusion; magic and sorcery; mystical attainment and shamanic dismemberment.
An eclipsed Full Moon was even more terrifying, since to the primal reptilian brain within all of us, it represents a withdrawal of the benevolent life force. Although we scoff at such a notion today, for many indigenous peoples, and to the arithmological imagination capable of associating the Moon with goddesses like Hecate, Demeter, and Artemis (5):
. . . the abrupt blackening of the Moon meant . . . that the natural order had been violated and life was doomed . . . In earlier times, especially for lunar cultures, an eclipse would have meant – if only for a few minutes – that the water and food of life were gone, as well as the hope of life renewed.
This withdrawal of the benevolent life force harbored by the Moon was, at the same time, accompanied by a kind of bittersweet relief in the psyche of an arithmologist ambivalent about the Moon, since on a primal level, it also meant a temporary extinguishing of the Moon’s power to do harm, as well as good.
Trump’s Attitude Toward Women
Of course, these descriptions reference what most contemporary people would consider the irrational vestiges of a primitive mindset no longer applicable to life in the 21st century. And yet here we are, still reeling from another stolen election in which a woman, feared and hated by many, won the popular vote by over 2 million, yet lost the election to a misogynistic “pussy grabbing man (who) demonstrated over and over again that he loathes powerful women who do not bend to his will” (6).
Although not all women voted against Trump, it is likely that women will not fare well under his administration. He has threatened to roll back Roe v Wade, repeal the Affordable Health Care Act – which despite its flaws has made it possible for many women to obtain free or low cost contraception, as well as general reproductive and other health care. In addition, he has boasted about committing sexual assault, called women “pigs” and “dogs,” and said that, “putting a wife to work is a very dangerous thing” (7). As Jean Hannah Edelstein notes in The Guardian (8), “If the head of state can treat women like objects, why should any other American man feel he should behave differently?”
Trump’s Attitude Toward the Environment
Aside from his attitude toward women, Trump’s Full Moon eclipse also reflects a deeper disregard for the archetypal Feminine. Particularly troubling is his stance on environmental issues – which at heart are rooted in an archetypal Feminine awareness that humans and the ecological systems that sustain us are part of an integral community of Life, and that ultimately what we do to the Earth we do to ourselves.
Over the past 40 years or so, we have made great strides in recognizing this Feminine truth – through the creation of the Environmental Protection Agency, the passage of legislation like the Endangered Species Act, the Clean Water Act, and more recently the Clean Power Plan, and international efforts to mitigate climate change such as the Paris Climate Accord. It is not unlikely to assume that much of this progress will be rolled back during Trump’s administration, which also plans to open up federal lands to extensive oil and gas drilling and coal mining; eliminate many federal regulations that currently at least attempt to keep corporate excesses in check, and neuter the EPA. He is appointing many fossil fuel executives and climate change deniers to cabinet positions. He has promised to take an active role in promoting industrial agriculture, which is heavily dependent on fossil fuels, pesticides, and inherently damaging to the environment.
As long-time environmental activist Bill McKibben says, “I think it’s clear that he wants no part of environmental progress, and I imagine the damage from this election will be measured in geologic time” (9). It can also be measured arithmologically in terms of the Realm of Two, where Trump appears to be acting as an agent of the eclipsed Full Moon along a path of inequality (devaluing and demonizing the Feminine), moving us all closer to the possibility of ecological disaster.
Mars and the Realm of Two
In addition to the association of various deities and their planetary correlates with given numbers, each planet can be understood to have a relationship to number in a more mathematical sense through a consideration of its orbital characteristics. Of primary importance is its sidereal period – the time it takes a planet to complete its orbit around the Sun. In this regard, because of its approximately 2-year sidereal period, Mars can be associated with the Realm of Two through orbital dynamics.
In Trump’s chart, Mars completes a Half-Kite pattern with his lunar eclipse opposition.
Mars in the Realm of Two
Within the Realm of Two – especially within the context of a mindset that involves ambivalence toward the Feminine – Mars can add intensity and at times complication to that ambivalence. Not surprisingly – given its appropriation as the universal symbol for male energy – Mars is even more closely associated with the archetypal Masculine than the Sun, while Mars in Leo can represent an imbalanced hyper-Masculinity.
When in balance, Mars is focused on the cultivation of competence and expertise, the carving out of a sphere of personal influence, and the pursuit of a course of self-determination culminating in achievement, recognition, and individual attainment of excellence in whatever field the soul chooses to apply its talents. Mars’ effort on this level feeds the Sun’s need for a strong sense of purpose, identity and direction. All of this is a positive and healthy course of development along the archetypal Masculine polarity within the psyche of both women and men in the Realm of Two.
When out of balance, however, Mars can preside over what we might call an expression of the wounded Masculine – in which achievement, recognition, and individual attainment of excellence take place with a combative attitude that is highly competitive, aggressive, and at times ruthless in pursuing its goals. Along this path, the Feminine values of tolerance toward others, cooperation, and concern for the common good are lost in a rush of unbridled ambition toward self-aggrandizement by an aggressor bent on winning at any cost. This is essentially a path of inequality through the Realm of Two, which results in conflict, patterns of domination and suppression, and glaring imbalances of excess and deficiency.
Trump and the Wounded Masculine
In my previous book Tracking the Soul With an Astrology of Consciousness, I spoke about planets in the 12th house just above the horizon as associated with 1st chakra wounds where survival seems to be at stake. Often such planets simultaneously represent both a wounded response to the world and a survival mechanism for protecting oneself against the world.
Astrologers traditionally associate the Ascendant with the persona, or a mask each of us adopts in order to cope with the outside world. It is my sense, however, that the persona is primarily represented on the 12th house side of the Ascendant – in this place of wounded adaptation – where psychological coping strategies are formed and employed. With Jupiter in the 12th house, a false hyper-cheery, optimistic persona might overcompensate for rampant fear, while Saturn in the 12th house might reflect a cautious, serious persona that instinctively keeps others at arms length. With Mars in this position, one can become the schoolyard bully who goes on offense in order to avoid being the victim of attack.
Throughout his campaign, Trump was not shy about using inflammatory language to alienate not just his enemies but his would be allies, as well. Nor was he apologetic for inciting violence in his followers. Indeed, he seemed to provide a lightning rod for all the pent up frustration and anger festering within the disenfranchised voters that felt represented by him. Filled with bluster and braggadocio, he paraded an endlessly inflated sense of his own worth, including bragging about behaviors that most people would find offensive, or morally questionable, or even criminal. At the same time, he seemed to be quick to take offense at the slightest criticism or suggestion that he might in fact be a flawed, perhaps even somewhat delusional human being with no guiding principle other than his own self-interest. All of this can be understood as an expression of a wounded Mars persona – in this case, contributing to a Realm of Two pattern in which the potential for a precipitous slide into the Abyss on a wave of imbalance is never far away.
In an article in The Atlantic (10), Dan P. McAdams (Chair of the Department of Psychology at Northwestern University) observes Trump to be someone “supremely cognizant of the fact that he is always acting. He moves through life like a man who knows he is always being observed” through “an existence unmolested by the rumbling of a soul.” Here we might translate this observation into our current discussion as someone who is all persona and no substance – or in astrological terms, for whom Mars is what, Trump, the perpetual actor on the stage of life, embodies and reflects back to us.
In his fascinating article, McAdams attempts to dive beneath the persona to find the man, using what he refers to as the Big Five taxonomy of personality – measured along five primary scales: extroversion; neuroticism; conscientiousness, agreeableness, and openness. Trump rates extremely highly on the extroversion scale – functioning “in an outgoing, exuberant, and socially dominant manner. He is a dynamo—driven, restless, unable to keep still.” At the same time, he rates extremely low on the agreeableness scale: “People low in agreeableness are described as callous, rude, arrogant, and lacking in empathy. If Donald Trump does not score low on this personality dimension, then probably nobody does.”
Citing a story that Trump himself told, in which he gave his second-grade music teacher a black eye, McAdams concludes that “anger may be the operative emotion behind Trump’s high extroversion as well as his low agreeableness. Anger can fuel malice, but it can also motivate social dominance, stoking a desire to win the adoration of others. Combined with a considerable gift for humor (which may also be aggressive), anger lies at the heart of Trump’s charisma. And anger permeates his political rhetoric.”
Astrologers will recognize ruthless ambition, boorish callousness, and rampant anger as manifestations of an imbalanced Mars – which in Trump’s chart, rises at the apex of a Realm of Two pattern. In the Realm of Two, these qualities generally result in severe inequalities and disparities, and in a Trump administration will no doubt exacerbate the already widened gap between “winners” and “losers,” rich and poor, black and white, male and female. Following a paranoid path of inequality (to include Richard Hofstadter’s term), the next few years will also likely see an intensification of the “us and them” mentality that fueled Trump’s election – in the form of discrimination against Muslims, Mexican immigrants, Chinese business interests, women, political activists, journalists exercising their First Amendment rights, and anyone who gets in the way of the rampant Mars rising that will mark and mar this administration.
In sum, Donald Trump’s basic personality traits suggest a presidency that could be highly combustible. One possible yield is an energetic, activist president who has a less than cordial relationship with the truth. He could be a daring and ruthlessly aggressive decision maker who desperately desires to create the strongest, tallest, shiniest, and most awesome result—and who never thinks twice about the collateral damage he will leave behind. Tough. Bellicose. Threatening. Explosive.
Trump as a Nuclear Bully
As horrific as Trump’s wounded Mars will likely be within the arena of domestic policy, it becomes positively frightening to think what might happen as he takes his place on the world stage. Many have noted and worried about the fact that as president he will have the authority and power to launch any combination of the country’s 4,500 nuclear weapons against any country that, for whatever reason, gets under his thin skin. He has expressed his ignorance of nuclear weapons in general, being enamored of their destructive capacity, while at the same time, oblivious to the damage they can do. He has called for a new arms race, and said he would support the acquisition of nuclear weapons by Japan, South Korea, and Saudi Arabia, while not hesitating to use them himself against ISIS.
As noted by David Corn, writing for Mother Jones (11):
What makes Trump's loose talk—and ignorance—about nuclear weapons particularly worrisome is that in the past, he has taken a fatalistic approach toward the notion of nuclear war. He has spoken as if he believed such a conflagration was almost inevitable. And now he is about to become one of the few humans on the planet who can decide the fate of the Earth.
In the Realm of Two – emphasized in Trump’s chart – there are two possible outcomes: the fate of the Earth – or at least the human world – will be the cumulative consequence of people coming together across the Great Divide to mediate the conflicts that rip us apart, and co-create a culture built on common ground, with tolerance for differences, and the capacity to learn from each other. Or, we will devolve toward chaos, and march like lemmings over the cliff of willful ignorance into an Abyss that we may not be able to climb out of, within the lifetime of anyone reading this now.
Planetary Combinations in the Realm of Two
On Opposite Sides of the Rulership Wheel
In addition to the natural arithmological opposition between Sun and Moon, and Mars’ participation in the Realm of Two by orbital dynamics, other planetary combinations also evoke a sense of internal conflict, often played out externally. Such planetary combinations can be made with reference to the wheel of rulership – in which signs ascribed in counterclockwise sequence to the sections of the wheel with which they are traditionally associated are replaced by their ruling planet. According to this schemata, we begin with . . .
. . . and then make planetary substitutions as follows:
With this wheel of rulership as our reference, we can speculate that planets across the wheel from each other – in a 2nd harmonic relationship – will participate together in a Realm of Two pattern when they are in aspect to each other in a birthchart, especially when they are in opposition. This rule will apply to the following planetary pairs:
In Trump’s chart, Mars is semi-sextile Venus, Moon is quincunx Saturn, Sun is conjunct Uranus, and Mercury is square Neptune (12) – thus including four out of these six Realm of Two planetary combinations. All of these aspects are worth exploring, but let us start with the Sun-Uranus conjunction, which builds on the Full Moon eclipse that serves as the backbone for Trump’s Realm of Two pattern.
Sun-Uranus in the Realm of Two
Trump as an “Entrepreneur of Identity” in the Realm of One
In a different context, Sun and Uranus work together in the Realm of One (along with Jupiter – the other primary Realm of One planet) to ensure that the solar path toward self-actualization is highly individuated, filled with creative nuance, enriched by idiosyncrasy, and driven by a uniquely compelling sense of adventure. Those with strong Realm of One charts are leaders, torchbearers and beacons of hope in a world badly in need of solutions to intractable problems. In this role, Uranus brings a willingness to defy old rules and the audacity to break new ground, as well as the spark of genius and creative vitality necessary to do so in a way that transmutes chaos into illuminated order. Working at its best, Uranus facilitates the process of individuation and creative self-discovery that allows a unique contribution to be made that is capable of shining a brilliant light into the darkness of the Abyss for all of us.
For those who elected Trump president, certainly this was part of his charismatic appeal. Whether warranted or not, during his campaign Trump projected an air of confidence as a successful entrepreneur who could bring an innovative, independent outsider’s expertise and experience to fix what is wrong with America. More importantly, as an article in Scientific American suggested, “Trump’s political success derives not primarily from his acumen as a business entrepreneur but rather from his skills as an entrepreneur of identity—in essence, his ability to represent himself and his platform in ways that resonate with his would-be followers’ experience of their world” (13). This has immense appeal within the Realm of One as a promise to lead those who are suffering, out of the Abyss, and Trump does have a viable Realm of One pattern in his chart – formed by mutual aspects between Sun, Jupiter and Uranus.
Basic Realm of One Pattern
Sun and Uranus in the Realm of Two
Having said this, however, the alchemical synthesis of radically different energies required for Sun and Uranus to work well together in the Realm of One is not easily achieved – which is why the kind of transformative genius capable of actually moving human civilization as a whole toward new heights of creative possibility is rare. In many ways, as suggested by their opposition on the rulership wheel, Sun and Uranus are diametrically opposed to each other. Where they do come together in a pattern that points to the Realm of Two – as they do in Trump’s chart – these two inherently disparate planets must first work out their differences before any kind of creative synthesis is possible at all.
While we depend upon the Sun for its predictable regularity and reliability, Uranus is an agent of syncopated rhythms, unexpected surprises, and chaotic breakdowns in the established order. While the Sun naturally gravitates toward that which sustains life and ensures stability, Uranus perpetually walks on the edge of balance and seeks out that which is foreign, disturbing in its intensity, and disorienting in its radical departure from business as usual. While the Sun facilitates healthy ego development, Uranus can and often does precipitate challenges beyond the capacity of the ego to cope in a stable way. While the Sun places itself at the nexus of a resonant field of functionally useful relationships, Uranus triggers emotional restlessness and shatters relationships or sidesteps them altogether for the sake of independence.
Trump as a Spanner in the Works
All of these and other differences between Uranus and the Sun precipitate imbalance, and wherever imbalance exists, so does the potential for inequality in the Realm of Two. When this happens, individuals and cultures can respond in reactionary ways that rapidly escalate into conflict. Trump may be a Uranian outsider, promising to fix things in the Realm of One, while exploiting and widening and exploiting the differences that divide us in the Realm of Two. In addition, Trump has thrown a spanner into the works of the American political process, promising to dismantle portions of the government like the EPA, to which he is averse; nominating people to cabinet positions, who have in the past expressed a profound disdain for the agencies they will oversee; keeping the press at arms length; refusing to read security briefings; recalling ambassadors; devaluing facts, science and objective truth; promising to roll back the clock on environmental progress, and pull the plug on US efforts to mitigate climate change. This is not business as usual.
Trump as a Textbook Narcissist and Destabilizing Force
At the same time, Uranus appears to be a destabilizing influence within a personality in which solar ego is inflated. A number of psychotherapists have called Trump a “textbook narcissist” (14). According to the Mayo Clinic, narcissistic personality disorder is “a mental disorder in which people have an inflated sense of their own importance, a deep need for admiration and a lack of empathy for others” (15). As clinical psychologist Ben Michaelis elaborates (16):
Narcissism . . . has similarities with histrionic personality disorder, borderline personality disorder, and antisocial personality disorder . . . Narcissism is an extreme defense against one’s own feelings of worthlessness. To degrade people is really part of (such a) personality disorder: it’s antisocial and shows a lack of remorse for other people. The way to make it O.K. to attack someone verbally, psychologically, or physically is to lower them. That’s what he’s doing.
To have someone with a narcissistic personality disorder in a position of power begs the question, asked by Bobby Azarian of Raw Story (17), of what happens he enters the international arena and comes up against other heads of state who don’t feed his narcissistic need for admiration:
What happens when another world leader who is a loose cannon doesn’t give Trump the admiration that he feels he deserves? We can be sure that notoriously anti-American dictators like Kim Jong-un of North Korea or Iran’s Supreme Leader Khamenei aren’t going to give him any respect, let alone praise. How would a President Trump react when he feels he is being put down or undermined? Will we see the start of World War III because the leader of the most important nation in the world doesn’t feel that others are kissing his ass as much as they should be? Narcissistic personality disorder is known to have strong negative effects on relationships, and when it comes to being an effective and responsible world leader, diplomacy is everything.
It is not likely to assume that the same Uranian forces that destabilize Trump’s ego in the Realm of Two will also destabilize international relations between the US and the rest of the world under his watch.
Adding Saturn-Moon and Mars-Venus to the Pattern
If we add the other planetary combinations that sit across from each other on the rulership wheel – an a Realm of Two relationship – to Trump’s chart, his Realm of Two signature begins to take a more interesting shape – with Saturn/Venus at the midpoint of the sextile arm of his Half-Kite.
Adding Saturn-Moon & Mars-Venus to the Pattern
Saturn and the Moon in the Realm of Two
Saturn became known as the Great Malefic by medieval astrologers, and was associated with forces of limitation, repression, and tyranny. Mythologically, Gaia – the first incarnation of a long succession of Greek lunar deities – persuaded Saturn’s counterpart Cronus to collude with her to overthrow her despotic ogre of a husband (Ouranus), only to become every bit as oppressive and controlling himself when married to Rhea (a lunar goddess, specifically associated by the arithmologists with the number Two). Cronus came to believe that his children would try to overthrow him, just as he had overthrown his own father. To prevent this from happening, he swallowed each child as Rhea gave birth.
Illuminated by this myth, it is not hard to see Saturn as the malevolent antithesis of all things lunar, serving as a dark counterforce to the entire evolutionary process. On a path of equality in the Realm of Two, Saturn and the Moon can cooperate to produce an orderly, more or less predictable process proceeding in desirable directions by intentional design. Saturn at its best keeps the irrational, destructive, and capricious potency of the Moon in check, while allowing its benevolent fertility to further an evolutionary agenda.
On a path of inequality in the Realm of Two, however, Saturn can manifest as a repression of lunar impulses – squeezing strong emotion into shadowy patterns of denial, deadening the intuitive imagination, diminishing our capacity for deriving nourishment from life, or perverting our human capacities for compassion and caring into suspicious phobias, keeping us separate and at war with each other. In a Realm of Two pattern in which Saturn functions in aspect to the Moon, an uneasy mixture of these two possibilities may often co-exist side by side – order and repression, control and lack of compassion, stability and fear-based restrictions.
In addition, if we consider the Moon as a reflection of the collective will of the masses – or essentially what we might consider democratic principles of justice, equality, and basic human rights – then Saturn can potentially act to repress democratic principles.
Trump as a Repressive Force
It is likely that a Trump presidency will guide the evolution of the US economy along channels that permit greater corporate profit with fewer regulatory impediments, reduced taxes, and in the short term at least, some economic stability – at least that is the hope of those who voted for him – while at the same time creating an atmosphere of repression and fear in which challenges to that decidedly corporate agenda must take place. As noted by Programme Director in the Institute of Global Affairs at the London School of Economics Piroska Nagy Mohacsi (18):
What may have to be defended is the preservation of the basic pillars of democracy. The real threat does not come from the economic front but from the risk that the new administration may end up tampering with the institutions that provide the political and economic framework and ensure overall financial and political stability in America. It is well documented that populists and autocrats tend to target from the outset the fundamental democratic institutions, first and foremost the independence of the judiciary and the media. This is where the main concerns should lay.
Mars and Venus in the Realm of Two
Any aspect between Mars and Venus within the context of a Realm of Two pattern tends to underscore and deepen any ambivalence toward the Feminine. As we saw earlier, the lunar aspect of the Feminine caused the arithmologists to pause at the threshold of the Realm of Two with some trepidation. But the patriarchal arithmologists feared Venus even more, specifically in her guise as Aphrodite Pandemos (Aphrodite of All the People or Common Aphrodite).
It was this Aphrodite that was constantly unfaithful to her lame husband Hephaestus, who became a laughingstock among the gods. It was this Aphrodite who caused the women of Cyprus to become the first prostitutes when they refused to worship her. It was this Aphrodite who promised Paris that she would grant him Helen as his wife, if he chose her most beautiful in a contest with Hera and Athena, and thus started the Trojan War. It was this Aphrodite that the Greek arithmologists (and all Greek patriarchs) feared. This fear added to their ambivalence about the number Two, with which the Feminine in general could be associated.
Born of the union of Zeus and Dione, Aphrodite Pandemos encompassed the mysteries of passionate erotic sexuality, which was both utterly irresistible and considered dangerous in its capacity to derail and derange all souls, undermine sanctioned marriages, and even at times destroy entire nations.
Trump as Sexual Predator
While we have already spoken about the ambivalence toward the Feminine that is encoded in the eclipsed Full Moon backbone of Trump’s Realm of Two pattern, the uneasy semi-sextile between Mars and Venus – also a factor in the Realm of Two – considerably ups the ante. The extent to which Trump is cowed by the Feminine is apparent in his locker-room braggadocio about being a sexual predator, and about being able to “get away with anything” (19). Numerous women have since come forward to accuse him of sexual assault and/or harassment. Trump is certainly not the first president to have used his power to sexual advantage, but he is surely among the most blatant and unapologetic about it.
While his boldness might belie the assertion of ambivalence that is endemic to Mars-Venus in the Realm of Two, the sheer volume and savagery of his comments to and about women suggest that it is actually dominance and not sex that interests him (20). With his hyper-aggressive Mars at the helm, his are not the remarks of a man who has a great love of women, but rather of one who fears them – as did the patriarchal arithmologists – and feels no compunction about disparaging their sexuality or their gender to put them in their place.
Trump and the Battle For Affirmation of Basic Human Values
On the other hand, it is likely to be strong women – like Elizabeth Warren or Representative Barbara Lee (D-CA) (21) – that pose the strongest source of opposition to Trump – calling him out when the glamour of celebrity (the narcissistic side of Venus) overrides his responsibility to champion the common people who elected him. The day after his inauguration, 200,000 people joined the Women’s march on Washington – with parallel demonstrations in 30 other cities around the world to take a “stand on social justice and human rights issues ranging from race, ethnicity, gender, religion, immigration and healthcare” (22).
This is perhaps the beginning of a battle for basic human decency, and the democratic values of equality, freedom, and tolerance of differences – all hallmarks of a path of equality through the Realm of Two. It seems to me, there is a great division in this country now – between one vision of America’s future, in which corporations rule; and another in which the will of the people continues to be the benchmark of democracy in action. It is not unlikely to assume that with his strong Realm of Two chart, marked in part by this semi-sextile between Mars and Venus, opposed each other on the rulership wheel, Trump’s presidency will be an intensified battle between opposing sets of values.
If the man charged with carrying the torch forward fails to recognize his responsibilities to anyone but himself and his own business interests, then it will be up to we the people – probably led by women asserting basic Feminine values of caring, compassion, and community – that will hold him accountable. As Gloria Steinem – one of the co-chairs of the march puts it (23):
Our constitution does not begin with ‘I, the President.’ It begins with, ‘We, the People.’ I am proud to be one of thousands who have come to Washington to make clear that we will keep working for a democracy in which we are linked as human beings, not ranked by race or gender or class or any other label.
If the backlash to the Trump agenda becomes strong enough and within that backlash, we remember who we are as a people, and what really matters, then Trump might be an unwitting agent to the rebirth of a vital democracy in the U.S.
Like the grain of sand in the oyster that serves as an irritant around which a pearl forms in response, the best-case scenario may be that as Trump takes the presidency to a new low, the country as a whole rises in response to affirm its core values and human decency. Let us hope that is the case, and may we all have the courage to respond to dark times ahead with the luster of pearls.
(1) Carl Jung, Synchronicity: An Acausal Connecting Principle, Princeton, NJ: Princeton University Press, 1960, pp 41-42.
(2) Michael Goldfarb, “Donald Trump and the politics of paranoia,” BBC News Magazine: 24 January 2016. http://www.bbc.com/news/magazine-35382599. Retrieved 23 December 2016.
(3) Tim Murphy, “Conspiracy Theorist in Chief,” Mother Jones: Volume 41, Number 6, November – December 2016, p. 6.
(4) Donald Trump was born 10:54 AM, June 14, 1946 in Jamaica, New York – Rodden Rating AA (BC/BR in hand).
(5) Cashford, Jules. The Moon: Myth and Image. New York, NY: Four Walls Eight Windows, 2003, p. 324.
(6) Jean Hannah Edelstein, “Trump’s misogyny didn’t win him the election. But it will change women’s lives,” The Guardian: 12 November 2016. https://www.theguardian.com/lifeandstyle/2016/nov/13/trump-misogyny-didnt-win-election-will-change-womens-lives-clinton. Retrieved 27 December 2016.
(7) Jordyn Phelps. “Donald Trump in 1994: ‘Putting a Wife to Work is a Very Dangerous Thing’,” ABC News: June 1, 2016. http://abcnews.go.com/Politics/donald-trump-1994-putting-wife-work-dangerous-thing/story?id=39537935. Retrieved 23 January 2016.
(8) Ibid, Endnote 6.
(9) Quoted in Steven Mufson and Brady Dennis, “Trump victory reverses U.S. energy and environmental priorities,” The Washington Post: 9 November 2016. https://www.washingtonpost.com/news/energy-environment/wp/2016/11/09/trump-victory-reverses-u-s-energy-and-environmental-priorities/. Retrieved 27 December 2016.
(10) Don P.McAdams, “The Mind of Donald Trump,” The Atlantic: June 2016. http://www.theatlantic.com/magazine/archive/2016/06/the-mind-of-donald-trump/480771/. Retrieved 29 December 2016.
(11) David Corn, “Does Donald Trump Believe Nuclear War is Inevitable,” Mother Jones: December 8, 2016. http://www.motherjones.com/politics/2016/12/donald-trump-nuclear-war-weapons-inevitable. Retrieved 14 January 2017.
(12) Since Mercury square Neptune is not part of Trump’s integrated Realm of Two signature, I will not be discussing it in this article.
(13) Stephen Reicher and S. Alexander Haslam, “The Politics of Hope: Donald Trump as an Entrepreneur of Identity,” Scientific American: November 19, 2016. https://www.scientificamerican.com/article/the-politics-of-hope-donald-trump-as-an-entrepreneur-of-identity/. Retrieved 6 January 2017.
(14) Henry Alford, “Is Donald Trump Actually a Narcissist? Therapists Weigh In,” Vanity Fair: November 11, 2015. http://www.vanityfair.com/news/2015/11/donald-trump-narcissism-therapists. Retrieved 7 January 2017.
(15) Mayo Clinic, “Definitions and Conditions: Narcissistic personality disorder.” http://www.mayoclinic.org/diseases-conditions/narcissistic-personality-disorder/basics/definition/con-20025568. Retrieved 7 January 2017.
(16) Ibid, Endnote 14.
(17) Bobby Azarian, “A neuroscientist explains: Trump has a mental disorder that makes him a dangerous world leader,” Raw Story: 18 January 2016. http://www.rawstory.com/2016/01/a-neuroscientist-explains-trump-has-a-mental-disorder-that-makes-him-a-dangerous-world-leader/. Retrieved 21 January 2017.
(18) Piroska Nagy Mohacsi, “America’s real challenge is the defense of democratic institutions,” LSE US Centre. http://blogs.lse.ac.uk/usappblog/2016/11/16/americas-real-challenge-is-the-defence-of-democratic-institutions/. Retrieved 11 January 2017.
(19) Ben Jacobs, Sabrina Siddiqui and Scott Bixby, “ ‘You Can Do Anything’: Trump brags on tape about using fame to get women,” The Guardian: 8 October 2016. https://www.theguardian.com/us-news/2016/oct/07/donald-trump-leaked-recording-women. Retrieved 23 January 2017.
(20) Paige Lavender, “These Might Be Donald Trump’s Most Disgusting Comments Yet About Women,” The Huffington Post: October 7, 2016. http://www.huffingtonpost.com/entry/donald-trump-women-comments_us_57f8016de4b0e655eab4148d . Retrieved 12 January 2017.
(21) Jen Hayden, “In a fiery statement, congresswoman announces inauguration boycott, promises to lead the resistance,” Daily Kos: January 12, 2017. http://www.dailykos.com/stories/2017/1/12/1619707/-In-a-fiery-statement-Congresswoman-announces-Inauguration-boycott-promises-to-lead-the-resistance. Retrieved 26 January 2017.
(22) Amber Jaimeson, “Women’s March on Washington: a guide to the post-inaugural social justice event,” The Guardian: December 27, 2016. https://www.theguardian.com/us-news/2016/dec/27/womens-march-on-washington-dc-guide. Retrieved 17 January 2017.
(23) Ibid, Endnote 21.
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