The Role of the Least Aspected Planet in Astrocartography.
Planetary Symbolism in Astrocartography and Transcendental Astrology,
by Rob Couteau.
Saturn = 011
Mercury = 101
Jupiter = 111
Moon = 120
Venus = 130
Pluto = 200
Mars = 210
Uranus = 211
Neptune = 311
Sun = 321
Photo: President Harry S. Truman
Harry S. Truman
Harry S. Truman, the thirty-third President of the United States (1945-1949; 1949-1953), assumed the presidency during an unprecedented time of shifting allegiances in the greater world order. Vice president under Franklin D. Roosevelt, Truman succeeded to the presidency after F.D.R.’s death on April 12, 1945, and he was suddenly confronted with the burden of several “significant responsibilities” (Primary Saturn), such as the task of ending World War II and of planning the economic reconstruction of Europe.
In Truman’s astrocartography, Primary Saturn rises over the southern tip of Japan and curves north, over the western coast of Korea and across northern China. This pattern reflects three major issues of the Truman presidency: dropping the atom bomb in southern Japan; the Korean War; and averting a war with Communist China, partially through Truman’s controversial dismissal of the popular right-wing officer, General Douglas MacArthur.
Hiroshima (34N24; 132E27) and Nagasaki (32N48; 129E55) lie in close proximity to Truman’s Primary Saturn. Hiroshima, the first populated city to experience the devastation of an atomic bomb, suffered injuries and loss of life totaling to almost 130,000 people, with 90% of the city destroyed. In Nagasaki, 75,000 people were either killed or maimed and a third of city was obliterated. Since 1955, Hiroshima has hosted an international conference on the threat of nuclear weapons, and each city has become a living symbol of the terrors of the nuclear age, with its inherent threat of apocalypse.
Truman’s Secondary Mercury rises over the central Chinese coast and, running parallel with Saturn, forms a Transcendental Midpoint-Field with Saturn over China’s political power center, Beijing (39N55; 116E25). Truman’s administration bore the brunt of Republican criticism when Chiang Kai-shek’s Nationalist forces, which had received little substantial backing from the president, were forced to withdraw from the mainland to the island of Taiwan. Again, on Truman’s astrocartography, Secondary Mercury curves in a Transcendental Rising position over the Chinese coast and is situated directly over Taiwan.
An integral part of the Truman Doctrine concerned itself with the spread of Communism, particularly in postwar Europe and Asia. On June 30, 1950, five days after the invasion of South Korea by the Communist North, Truman authorized the introduction of American military forces in support of the South. In November, after American forces drove the Communists back to the Yalu River area bordering China, the Chinese launched an unexpected counteroffensive. Again, Truman’s Primary Saturn rises precisely over the west coast of Korea. His Saturn line closely reflects the path of this Chinese invasion from the north, which shifted the center of the Korean conflict back to the 38th parallel.
As speculative as it is to make such an assertion, Truman’s most important contribution may have been to avoid a protracted land war with China. His courageous decision to remove General MacArthur from his military command served to strengthen and to preserve civilian control of the military and to forestall reactionary Republican forces calling for a coastal blockade, bombing, and a full-scale invasion of the Chinese mainland.1 Again, the positioning of Truman’s Primary Saturn over Beijing–the Chinese power-center–is noteworthy, as is the proximate parallel path of Secondary Mercury and the Transcendental Midpoint-Field these planets form over Taiwan and the northeast coast of China.
Other points of interest in Truman’s astrocartography include the vertical, Midheaven position of Saturn just several degrees west of the California coast. One of his early responsibilities as president was to address the San Francisco Conference in June 1945, which founded the United Nations and drafted the U.N. Charter. The U.N. General Assembly conducted its first meeting the following January, in England. Truman’s Primary Saturn curves over northern England in a setting pattern. A key element of the Truman Doctrine was the Marshall Plan, which provided economic assistance to assure the recovery of Europe and, especially, of war-torn Great Britain.
Unlike some of the other Saturnian personalities in this study, Harry Truman was not born in a Primary Location. During his service in the First World War, he traveled the closest he had ever been to his Primary Saturn line, when he fought in military engagements along the Western Front. This notable “Transcendental experience” must have been of particular significance in Truman’s life, as he “rose in rank” (Primary Saturn) from Lieutenant to Captain and gained the respect of fellow officers and of subordinates, establishing a “record of distinguished service” (Saturn) throughout his war years. Truman biographer David McCullough tells of how Captain Truman, taking command of a particularly wild group of soldiers (the “Dizzy D” Battalion of the 129th Field Artillery) “had transformed what had been generally considered the worst battery in the regiment to what was clearly one of the best.”2
Truman was one of several U.S. presidents with a Transcendental Planet passing directly over Washington, D.C.: his Tertiary Jupiter is situated there in its vertical, Midheaven position. (In addition to the presidential activities that occurred under the Jupiter line, Truman won the 1948 presidential nomination at the Democratic National Convention held in Philadelphia (39N57; 75W09), a location just several degrees east of the line.)
Finally, we must consider one of the most far-reaching decisions of the Truman years: the establishment of the Central Intelligence Agency. Truman later came to regret this decision, calling the creation of the CIA “a mistake.” In his oral-history memoirs, he revealed his true feelings about the Agency, calling it a “government all of its own” that had “got out of hand,” and he characterized its unaccountability as “a very dangerous thing in a democratic society,” adding: “it’s got to be put a stop to.” He concludes, “If I’d known what was going to happen, I never would have done it.” Despite these unequivocal judgments rendered with the wisdom of hindsight, after “expanding in proportions” (Tertiary Jupiter)3 far beyond Truman’s original intentions, the Agency has become an enduring part of the American political landscape. (Its headquarters are located under Truman’s Tertiary Jupiter line, in Langley, Virginia (38N57; 77W10).
Truman’s “caustic / wit” (Primary Saturn / Secondary Mercury) and “tell it / like-it-is” temperament (Mercury / Saturn) led him to declare “I’m going to give ’em hell” as he began an “uphill campaign” (Primary Saturn) for reelection in 1948. The words were echoed by enthusiastic voters, who shouted “Give ’em hell, Harry!” as his train arrived at campaign reelection stops across the country. Succinctly echoing the Saturn / Mercury keynote, Truman later declared: “I never gave anybody hell; I just told the truth, and they thought it was hell ” (Saturn).
1. “When the Supreme Commander of the U.S. and Allied forces in Korea publicly challenged Truman’s conduct of that war, Truman summarily fired him, even though the action brought down on the president a firestorm of negative publicity. Historians have said in retrospect that the firing of the popular MacArthur was among Truman’s most important acts, one that strengthened the presidency and the president’s authority under the Constitution.” Len Colodny and Robert Gettlin, Silent Coup. The Removal of a President, p. 48.
2. David McCullough, Truman, p. 119.
3. “The founding of the CIA marked a dramatic overhaul of the traditional paradigms of American politics. The terms under which the Agency was established institutionalized the concepts of ‘the necessary lie’ and ‘plausible deniability’ as legitimate peacetime strategies, and in the long run produced an invisible layer of government whose potential for abuse, domestically and abroad, was uninhibited by any sense of accountability. […] Owning airlines, radio stations, newspapers, insurance companies and real estate, the CIA’s presence in world affairs grew so prodigiously over the decades that people began to suspect its presence behind every thicket.” Frances Stoner Saunders, The Cultural Cold War. The CIA and the World of Arts and Letters, pp. 32-33. According to Tom Braden, who was a former OSS officer, an assistant to CIA director Allen Dulles, and the director of the CIA’s International Organizations Division, “It’s a shame what happened to the CIA. It could have consisted of a few hundred scholars to analyze intelligence, a few hundred spies in key positions, and a few hundred operators ready to carry out rare tasks of derring-do. Instead, it became a gargantuan monster, owning property all over the world, running airplanes and newspapers and radio stations and banks and armies and navies, offering temptations to successive Secretaries of State, and giving at least one president [Nixon] a brilliant idea: since the machinery for deceit existed, why not use it?” See Saunders, p. 423, citing Braden article, “What’s Wrong with the CIA?’, from Saturday Review, April 5, 1975.
Revised & updated:
5 August 2005
Role of the Least-aspected Planet in Astrocartography
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II. Transcendental Biographies | III. Transcendental Events
IV. Psychic inflation - Summary of Planetary Symbolism - Transcendental Planets
V. Nodes / the Triple-zero Transcendental | Appendices: Orbs / References / Data
Additional Maps | Bibliography | FAQ
I. Interview in Astrolore | II. Transcendental Nations | III. American Presidents & LAP Saturn
IV. World Events | V. Numinous Consciousness
VI. The LAP as a metaphor of the soul | VII. Zones of Intensity |
VIII. Complete Index of Names and Events
All text © Copyright 2005 Robert Couteau and cannot be used without the written and expressed consent of the author.
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