©2006-2009 by Donna Cunningham, MSW
This month we’re celebrating proud, regal Leo. If Leos had their way, we’d celebrate them each and every month, but this is their birthday month, and many of them are celebrating it in typical lavish fashion for the full 31 days. (Don’t take the number of candles on the cake literally; it’s just a rough approximation.) They’ll especially expect homage around the Leo New Moon on the 20th, so prepare some suitable tribute.
While coping with one Leonine diva or another among my friends recently, I’ve been reminded of a piece I wrote about this sign for The Mountain Astrologer while Saturn was in Leo, back in 2005-2007.
While I’m at it, let me thank TMA for providing me with space to explore individual facets of astrology in depth these past many years. They have an excellent forum on Facebook here, as well as PLANET TRACKS on their website to keep you informed of current astrological positions. The final piece in my long series of articles on outer planet transits to the career houses–this time on Pluto–is on the stands now, and my new series on aspects will begin with the October-November issue of TMA.
At any rate, the article as it stood then recorded what I was observing about three distinct types of responses by Leos to transiting Saturn’s presence in that sign. When Saturn finally ended its siege of Leo and moved into Virgo, I yanked the piece from my ebook but couldn’t really bear to throw it out. (I have the tear sheet of every single article or column I’ve ever written—it’s what authors do.) The text file for the article slunk away to some dusty, neglected sector of my hard drive.
Lately, Leo Suns, Moons and Ascendants around me have been having dramatic public meltdowns, thanks to the eclipses. I’ve been thinking that maybe that piece wasn’t just about transits, but has relevance to ways Leos in general handle pressure—planetary and otherwise. Since Leo is the sign of royalty and of the inner child, let me share my observations in storybook fashion as a tale of three queens.
#1: A Diva in Meltdown
Queen Uno had enjoyed her reign immensely, some 21 years of being the center of attention at the dazzling royal palace. She led a pampered, luxurious life, dressed to the nines, and kowtowed to by one and all. No one expected her to do anything more responsible than to grace the court with her presence at sumptuous feasts, and if she staged the occasional high volume tantrum, she generally got her way.
Recently, however, His Highness had been making the most unreasonable demands on her, telling her she had to take on some of the royal functions. He even insisted that she start visiting the sick and the poor. He said he was feeling his age and needed her to share some of the burdens of his reign.
She couldn’t fathom how he could let himself go like that—far from admitting her age, she did her best to ignore it. For some years now, she’d banned birthday celebrations and avoided full frontal views in the mirror, while her ladies in waiting flattered her that she didn’t look a day older than when she took the throne.
One morning, however, she happened to catch her reflection in a mirror and was desolated. She was NOT. AGING. WELL. There were now deep lines and wrinkles and even unsightly age spots on her royal countenance. Clearly, she had to do something without delay. The king had only married her because she was a beauty back in the day—and now she’d caught him casting admiring looks at a stunning young duchess who’d recently arrived on the scene.
The queen consulted the royal astrologer for a good time to have a facelift, but he—with understandable trepidation—counseled her not to do it. “With Saturn sitting on your Ascendant, the result won’t be good. Your skin will be too tight, and it will make you look hard and strange.” After beheading him, she went right ahead and had the surgery. He was right—awfully, appallingly right.
Depressed, she dramatically attempted suicide, soaked up sympathy from her hordes of sycophants, and when that palled, hid in her chambers for the rest of her reign, full of self-pity and stuffing herself with sweetmeats.
#2: The Queen Bee Casts out the Drones
Dos was born a queen, the only one in the hive with the proper equipment for the role. She never questioned it, just went on about her functions, and was a hard-working and capable queen—the center of the hive upon which all members depended. There came a time, however, when she could feel that she was getting older and didn’t have the stamina she once did.
She kept up with the queenly workload, but it cost her dearly and she was finally forced to make some changes. The hive surely needed the thousand or so worker bees to gather the nectar, make the honeycomb, defend the hive and feed the larvae, but why did the hive need all those drones? There were a hundred of them to feed, and they did nothing except fertilize some eggs once in a while. With the support of the worker bees, Queen Dos drove almost all of the drones out of the hive that fall, and the cutbacks made it a smaller but happier and healthier hive.
#3: The Queen in Spite of Herself
Trace was a distant cousin of the king’s—in line to the throne, but from a branch that had seen far better days and that wasn’t even invited to court functions. Then the king died, his heirs abdicated, and when the rest of the line was wiped out by a plague, Trace found herself drafted.
The crown sat heavily on her brow—she had no idea how to be a queen and knew she would go down in history as a failure. Each morning, she rose in dread of making a fool of herself, and she agonized over every royal function and decision, though she was too proud to let her uncertainty show.
Some older members of the court saw that she was intelligent and had a noble nature, so they counseled and tutored her until she began to emerge in her own right as a solid reagent. Never forgetting her humble beginnings, she championed the unfortunate and instituted programs that improved their lot, becoming much beloved in the land. In old age, Trace was venerated as the best, wisest, fairest, and most devoted queen they had ever had.
If you’re among those with important placements in the sign Leo—Sun, Moon, Ascendant, or several planets—which of the three queens are you most like? In order to keep your crown and wear it for a good long time, you might do well to be more like Trace than Uno.
I’m torn about whether to leave the comments turned on for this piece or not. I’ll probably have to issue a full public apology to Leos tomorrow or face a class action lawsuit. Hey, you know I’m just funning you, right? Consider it a roast like the well-deserved one to Joan Rivers on the Comedy Channel recently.
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