Posted by: Donna Cunningham | September 16, 2013

The Chart of Machu Picchu’s Discovery!

©9-16-13 by Donna Cunningham, MSW

machu-picchuThanks to all my Readers who made the Buy One Get One ebook sale such a success. (The sale continues until the 20th, and you can read about it here: Final Week on Donna’s B.O.G.O. SALE–Buy an Ebook, Get One Free.)

As you may have guessed from my recent post about the mummies of Peru, the Incans and Pre-Incans are a long-time fascination of mine.

I recently found an entertaining and informative book about the trek of Hiram Bingham, the explorer who was the first modern-day Westerner to discover Machu Picchu, the site of an Incan royal city in the Andes. The city is thought to have been built in about 1450.

In his 2012 New York Times best-seller, Turn Right at Machu Picchu, Mark Adams alternates between Bingham’s account of his quest to find the lost city and Adam’s own parallel journey on foot, under the same rugged, demanding, and often dangerous conditions.

The author notes that Hiram Bingham arrived at that site on July 24, 1911 at around noon, after leaving for this last leg of the journey at 10:07 AM. (P.176 of Adams’ book.) Bingham kept meticulous notes and photographed everything, so the time of just past noon was accurate. Could any astrologer resist the temptation to erect a chart for that time? Not this one! You can see it below. Read More…

Posted by: Donna Cunningham | September 2, 2013

Something to Help You Believe that Prayer Works

For the past month,  I have been waiting and anticipating a landmark in Skywriter’s history–my 600th post. I had no idea what it would be, but hoped it would be something special.  This is it! Number 600! Thank you to all my readers–I have truly loved sharing with you these past few years.

 This came in the email this morning, when I was feeling pretty low. I hope it helps any of you out there that are feeling low, too.


Posted by: Donna Cunningham | August 16, 2013

I Must Have Been a Mummy in my Other Life

©8-16-13 by Donna Cunningham, MSW

 Okay, Pedants[1], don’t write. I’m fully aware that that’s not possible, because technically, if you’re a mummy, you’re not having a life. I just mean that in some past life, I must have been a mummifier, or whatever you call a person who makes mummies. I have always been fascinated with them. I am riveted by every documentary on the subject and subscribe to Archeology magazine partially to read about new discoveries.

The most exciting thing that has happened to me all year was going to a  huge traveling exhibit this week of mummies from around the world. If it had mainly been Egyptian mummies, I would have been disappointed—I am sooooo over Egyptian mummies! Read More…

Posted by: Donna Cunningham | July 31, 2013

Still Ticked off at the Debunkers!

Last week a show debuted on ABC called, “Would you Fall for That?”  They thought it would boost their ratings to feature an episode where they did a so-called scientific test to debunk astrology.  They asked a roomful of subjects for their birth data, then pretended to have their astrology charts done by an astrologer who would write each of them an individual report based on their chart.

So then they gave all the subjects their purported individual reports and asked if the subjects agreed with the profile.  When the subjects enthusiastically agreed with the reports, the host revealed that they’d all gotten the same report and that it wasn’t from an astrologer at all, it was  one  written by a  psychologist back when the experiment  was first done years ago.

And then they all had a great big har de har–while millions watched on national tv–about how stupid it was to believe in astrology.

Hello,  People, that was NOT astrology nor was it scientific research, that, basically, was a hoax!

Read More…

Posted by: Donna Cunningham | July 24, 2013

Goal Setting–a Helpful Strategy for Handling Tough Transits

©Reposted 7-24-2013 by Donna Cunningham, MSW

Let’s look at ways of meeting the challenges of difficult transits. Create a list of best and the worst case scenarios for the aspect you’re concerned with, depending on which houses of your astrology chart is involved. Then pick one of those best case scenarios and brainstorm ways to make it happen.

Analyze exactly what actions would help you change things that aren’t working for you.  In order to do that effectively, rather than in a hit and miss fashion, the best tool is a set of  clear, achievable goals that lead you to definite actions.

Of all the aspects, squares are the most likely to spur you to action. Of all the planet/sign pairs, results-oriented Saturn and its sign, Capricorn responds most strongly to goal-setting  so the transit of Pluto through Capricorn is  an important window for identifying and working toward concrete improvements in the areas of life governed by the houses where transiting Pluto in Capricorn is located. Let’s look at resources to help you set realistic targets for this transit and to come up with steps that will help you achieve them. Read More…

Posted by: Donna Cunningham | July 22, 2013

Royal Baby Boy Born as Mercury turns Direct — Stelliums Rule!

(c)7-22-2013 by Donna Cunningham, MSW

The long-awaited first child of William and Kate was born at 4:24 PM, today,  7/22/2013 in London. Here’s his birth certificate. His chart is shown  further below, and you’ll note that he has a stellium in Cancer of Mars,  Jupiter, Mercury, and the Sun in the 8th house.


As often noted here, major chart features like stelliums often run in families. William was born with a stellium in the 9th house of Mars, Saturn, and Pluto in Libra and Jupiter in Scorpio–all being crossed in the past three years by transiting Saturn. His recent Saturn return, then, was a coming of age for him.  (See his chart and biography on AstroDataBank here: William, Prince (1982).) The baby’s Mars and Jupiter are conjunct William’s Cancer Sun and Moon. (Read about my new book on stelliums here: Finally, The Stellium Handbook is Here!) Read More…

Posted by: Donna Cunningham | July 20, 2013

How to Help a Cancer Leave Home

Donna says: This series of excerpts from Mary L. English’s books on all 12 signs of the zodiac has been very popular with Skywriter’s readers, and her newest one is out now. Here, with permission of the publisher, is an excerpt from How to Care for a Cancer: Real Life Guidance on How to Get Along and Be Friends with the 4th Sign of the Zodiac.

©7-20-2013 by Mary L. English

When a Cancer is growing up, they enjoy the whole being in the arms-of-the-ones-they love or, equally, embracing-the-ones they love. It’s a two-way street. Generally, and I say this cautiously, because there is always someone this won’t apply to, Cancers love their mothers. They just do that automatically. As mother represents all those things they love: being cuddled, having tasty food, feeling together and feeling safe. Even if their relationships with their mothers are challenging, they still yearn for that one true love of mother-dom.

I can’t tell you the amount of clients who have told me that one of their children just doesn’t seem to want to leave home. And if I enquire a little further, their Sun sign is Cancer. The parents are generally Air or Fire signs, as they’re the most independent signs… and there their child is, all grown-up, with a job and a car and a partner sometimes, and they still come home for dinner, still sleep in their bed in the childhood bedroom. They make themselves useful with helping around the house, doing shopping, paying bills, so any mother in her right mind surely wouldn’t want them to fly the nest.  Read More…

Posted by: Donna Cunningham | July 17, 2013

Mercury Advisory—Keep your Eyes Open and your Mouth Shut!

©7-17-13 by Donna Cunningham, MSW

We’ve had quite a dialogue lately about Mercury retrograde. I’ve mentioned that each such period is different. It depends on what aspects Mercury makes, both as it slows down to turn retrograde and as it slows down turning direct again, because it’s at its most powerful during the stationary periods.  Those aspects can last 10 days or longer, whereas they might last only a few days when Mercury is direct and moving at its usual speed of about a degree a day.

Mercury’s current aspects are  an opposition to Pluto and a square to Uranus, completing a difficult cardinal t-square. In all, it’s in range from 7/14-7/31, though the retrograde ends on Friday, the 20th. (Slow moving Pluto is at 10 Capricorn and Uranus is at 13 Aries–neither one of them is going anywhere any time soon, so the T-square with Mercury is in effect from about 13-18 Cancer.)  Donna

What concerns me about this transit is not that Mercury is retrograde, but that it’s such a volatile combination. Unwise communications—things you cannot unsay—can cause an explosive confrontation with long-lasting fallout. Yes, maybe there are things going on that you need to speak out about, but you’d be wise to postpone the discussion until that t-square is over at the end of the month. A word to the wise!

One other caution–Uranus rules computers and other electronic devices. If this combination touches on technologically crucial areas of your chart–such as the 3rd or one of the career houses– it would be prudent to back up current work regularly until the end of the month. And, no, I surely wouldn’t buy a major electronic device during this time.

THE GOOD NEWS:  Mercury Pluto aspects are quite powerful in terms of being able to analyze situations and get to the heart of the problem. Mercury stationary aspecting Pluto could be extremely productive of insights into long-standing blockages–things we’ve been reluctant to face or have been in denial about.  It can also make words powerfully healing OR seriously destructive. Read More…

Posted by: Donna Cunningham | July 15, 2013

25 Posts on Careers, Money, and Astrolgy

Hi, Folks, I’ve been working very hard this whole Mercury Retrograde period on revisions to the book I’m writing on stelliums.  Since so many new readers are following this blog,  I thought I’d share an older post.  Are you taking time to ponder your work life and career direction?  Here are 25 articles from Skywriter’s archives to help you sort things out astrologically.

Excerpts from my Ebook, The Outer Planets and Inner Life, v.1:  The Outer Planets as Career Indicators.

(Note: If you like these excerpts, you can purchase the ebook by sending me $15 via  Give them my email address:

More Posts about Vocational Astrology: 

Posts in the Astrology and Personal Finances series:

New to Skywriter and wondering what else you can find here?  Get an INDEX OF SKYWRITER’S 580 POSTS, sorted by category.  Excellent resource for students. Save it to your hard drive rather than print it, and then all the links are live.  Download it here:  1-Articles Index Skywriter 1-2013.

Posted by: Donna Cunningham | July 6, 2013

Readers’ Comments and Questions on Mercury Retrograde

©7-6-2013 by Donna Cunningham, MSW

It’s been a lively Mercury retrograde period here on Skywriter, with lots of interesting comments, questions, and discussion from readers on this topic. I thought I’d share some of them with you, in case you don’t visit the comment sections.

Q: Donna, I had an astrologer choose our marriage date, March 2, and was horrified to find out a few days before that it was during Merc Retro (would never have chosen that had I known), and though it was fine in the end, all kinds of things went “wrong.”

I was wondering “What was the astrologer thinking???” But we had been together for most of 10 years with some ups and downs, so would Merc Retro be appropriate for finally doing something we should have done long ago, as we are very happy now??? Thanks.

A: Hiya, Happy Mrs. One of two things could be in operation: 1) perhaps one or both of you had natal Mercury Rx, or the date you moved in together did, or 2) perhaps the astrologer did a good job and the relationship indicators in the chart were very good and outranked Mercury Retrograde. Mercury in and of itself is NOT a marriage indicator, neither good nor bad for a happy marriage. It more often affects trivial things like missed appointment dates, not life-changing events like a wedding. Donna Read More…

Back in 2011, I did a post about Amelia Earhart, one of my all-time heroes, and about how transits to her birth chart are stiearhartplane-webll working despite her death in the 1930s.

Although I’d forgotten about it,  I’d predicted that more conclusive evidence about what happened to her would come to light in 2013, while Pluto in Capricorn trined her natal Mars-Jupiter conjunction in Virgo.

A reader just wrote to me about my predictions, with the link given below to recent findings of an old, lost set of photos that are believed to show wreckage of her plane.

I’d also recently read an article on Bing that felt quite conclusive to me. It said that a jar of freckle cream was found on Nikumaroro, the small deserted Pacific island she is suspected to have crashed on.  She is known to have hated her freckles and to have used freckle cream often, so the odds that it wasn’t hers are miniscule.

Swank-EarhartThe same reader noted that Amelia herself said her birth time of around 11:30 PM on July 24, 1897 in Atchison, KS (giving an early Taurus Ascendant) could have been half an hour off in either direction.  A half hour earlier would have been an Aries Ascendant. Given the brave pioneer she was, with so many exceptional firsts to her credit, Aries rising is much more likely than Taurus.

Fellow fans, if you missed Amelia, the 2009 biographical film, try to rent it.  It portrays her life and triumphs as well as her unconventional (for the time) marriage to publisher, George Putnam.  As you can see here, Hillary Swank bears an uncanny resemblance to Amelia.  Richard Gere, as her husband, is, well, a plus in any role.

Read the Skywriter article here:   I See Dead People’s Charts–Amelia Earhart

Read the news article here:

7/13 Update: Another reader wrote the following: “Since you are also interested in Amelia, I thought you
might enjoy this latest news broadcast on the film discovery if you  haven’t already seen it:  “U.S. Group in Christchurch Tries to Solve the Amelia Earhart Mystery.”     TIGHAR’s executive director and their professional image analyst have  just returned from NZ with high-resolution copies of the 1938 photo negatives.  According to them, the negatives “were preserved on the original roll of film in the original can for 75 years,” and thus they are not brittle or scratched—literally a time  capsule.”

She also notes, “When I checked AstroDatabank today to see if they had any note of it, I noticed that less than a week ago (July 7th), they updated their Earhart  file with an AA rating for the 11:30 PM time, quoting BC in hand from a baby book page, a copy of which was published in a 1987  biography by her sister.  It seems like interesting timing (the update, I  mean). ”

AmeliaEarhart2A fun update 8/1/13: Another Amelia Earhart to fly around the world–but Says She’ll get Back Safe

“If your name is Amelia Earhart, you’re either destined to be really into airplanes or you’re not. Colorado traffic reporter Amelia Earhart is a case of the former. The 9NEWS staffer (shown above, left), an avid pilot, has announced plans to retrace the final flight of her famous namesake, though she’s planning on a happier ending. “One year from now I will be completing … and re-creating Amelia Earhart’s historic flight around the world,” Earhart announced. “It’s a dream that I’ve had since I was about 18 years old.”

It’s a delight to see how newsworthy this remarkable woman still is today–unforgettable!

Donna says: A few days ago, the topic of Mercury retrograde shadow periods came up in the discussions of Mercury Retrograde among Skywriter’s readers. Though familiar with the idea, I haven’t paid a lot of attention to it, since I’m usually writing my heart out in the days around Mercury’s turning from direct to retrograde and vice versa. Born during one of those turnings, I find them to be my most productive writing periods.

So, I went looking for information on the subject and came upon this gem by Dr. Z, who allowed me to reprint it here. He’s just as much a skeptic about the Mercury Retrograde hysteria as I am, but he’s even more irreverent. (Always a plus!) Read More…

Posted by: Donna Cunningham | June 29, 2013

Using Mercury Retrograde Well

©6/29/13 by Donna Cunningham, MSW

Mercury went retrograde at 23° Cancer on the 23rd and turns around on July 20th at 13° Cancer. As an author, I am actually quite a fan of Mercury Retrograde, as I make a practice of editing the book I am currently working on during the retrograde period. It’s my project for this period also, because my book on stelliums is just two chapters from being done but needs lots of fine tuning.

So, I’m busy on that, but wanted you to have links to the other articles about Mercury retrograde on this blog. I will happily return to writing for you readers in another couple of months. Missing you, Donna

PS. Helpful hint: If anyone tells you that Mercury is IN retrograde, feel free to ignore their advice.  They clearly don’t know Jack about astrology, or they’d say that Mercury is retrograde.

Mercury Retrograde Articles:

Other Articles about Mercury You Might Enjoy:


Posted by: Donna Cunningham | June 19, 2013

The Square—Resolving Inherent Conflicts

aspectscvrsm©2009 by Donna Cunningham, MSW

 This is an excerpt from my ebooklet, Analyzing Aspects:  Building Blocks of Chart Interpretation. To order the booklet, which contains separate chapters on conjunctions, squares, trines, oppositions, sextiles, quincunxes, and lesser-known aspects, send $8 to me through PayPal and give them my email address,

We’re taught that squares signify conflict—both internal and with the external world. Planets at a 90° angle represent issues we keep needing to resolve. Just when we think we’ve nailed them, they pop up again to demand attention. The aspect sets up a battle for dominance between planets in two very different signs and in the key areas of life two houses represent. Of all the difficult aspects, squares create the most dynamic tension between contradictory needs and desires.

Squares must be bad, right? Who wants conflict? But what would your world be like if you didn’t have any squares in your natal chart and never faced another transiting or progressed square? What if you avoided all contact with people whose planets formed right angles to yours? Would your existence be easy, peaceful, and trouble-free? Maybe, but you’d be bored senseless in no time.  Read More…

Posted by: Donna Cunningham | June 15, 2013

What Makes a Capricorn Father Tick?

Donna says: This weekend being Father’s Day, I wanted to publish a book excerpt from Mary English’s series of in-depth zodiac portraits, which always contain a helpful section about fathers who belong to the sign involved. This is from How to Cheer up a Capricorn and is posted here with permission of the publisher

©2012, by guest blogger, Mary L. English

 I know a few Capricorn fathers. They take their families very seriously. They take their role of provider and leader equally seriously. They also get dreadfully upset if their children get into trouble, or aren’t realising their ambitions.

Please keep in mind what sign you are, however. If you understand yourself, and your own motivations, you’re less likely to clash with other people. I have heard clients of mine complain about a Capricorn father, if they are Fire signs or Air signs and sometimes Dad is accused of being severe and overly formal.

These tend to be clients whose parents are now very elderly, so maybe this is because of the values of the older generation not fitting in with modern life. However, I don’t have many clients that make an appointment to discuss their father. It might come up in conversation but that isn’t the reason they come to see me.

To understand a Capricorn father, tackle him based on what element is predominant in his chart. Read More…

Posted by: Donna Cunningham | June 12, 2013

A Guide to Gardening by the Moon

Donna asks, Are any of my Skywriter readers out there raising a garden this year?  I’ve been hearing for years about how much gardening according to the current Moon signs helps in getting better crops, but haven’t tried it, not being a gardener myself. (I live in a high rise, after all!) My dear blogging buddy, CJ Wright of Auntie Moon is an expert on the Moon and also a long-time gardener, so she’s created a helpful and informative guide to this year’s growing season, which she’s written about below.

 Guest Blog by Cj Wright, a.k.a. Auntie Moon

If you’ve ever tried gardening by the Moon, you may have discovered you needed several different reference books. Most almanacs use the constellations rather than the zodiac signs in their daily listings, so you’d need something to convert the constellations to the Moon signs you read about in astrology books and magazines. If you’re relying on your favorite astrology blogger for the daily Moon sign, you need a calendar that shows the lunar phases for the month. Who’s right? Your almanac or your astrologer?

Moon signs don’t change magically at midnight. How can you be sure when the Moon changes from one sign to another? Is a time zone the same as a hardiness zone? Is parsley a plant of the Sun or Mercury?

Since I’m an old hand at gardening by the Moon, I’ve created a month-by-month guide for the 2013 summer season ~ every day from the summer solstice through the autumnal equinox ~ which covers:

  • The fertility of each sign and whether it’s a 1, 2, or 3 Moon day
  • Root, leaf, flower and fruit days
  • Dates for each Moon sign and its related gardening activities
  • Gardening duties for when the Moon is waxing or waning
  • Bringing the Moon Indoors ~ Home and self-care tips based on my personal experience of tracking the astrological Moon for many years Read More…
Posted by: Donna Cunningham | April 19, 2013

Birth Date for the Younger Suspect in Boston Bombings

Kelly Goldberg sent the birth date for the younger of the two suspects in the Boston bombings–the one who is still on the run as this is written. She writes: “his DOB is  7/22/1993 and he is thought to be of Chechen origin as in Chechnya. This was on MSNBC- from a wanted poster from FBI.”

I am on deadline for my advice column for Dell Horoscope, but will leave this to you to do with as you will.  Leave your thoughts in the comment section below this post.

Regards to you all–I really miss blogging, but besides the book on stelliums I am writing, I’m juggling my columns and preparing two lectures about stelliums for the NORWAC Astrology Conference in Seattle weekend. (Read about this much-loved conference here: NORWAC: Northwest Astrological Conference.)

Posted by: Donna Cunningham | April 9, 2013

Understanding the Minor Aspects in your Chart

©4-9-13 by Donna Cunningham, MSW

Hi, Folks, I’m still working hard on my book about stelliums, so won’t blog regularly until it’s finished in the fall. However, a lot of new Skywriter readers have joined us and have missed out on some of our past series, so here are links to posts about those minor aspects that are so puzzling in our charts.

Posted by: Donna Cunningham | March 19, 2013

Skywriter Takes a Break

So long for a while, folks.  I’ve enjoyed this forum and our exchanges immensely, but need to focus these next several months on finishing my book on stelliums and preparing my lectures for the NORWAC conference in Seattle Memorial Day weekend.  I also won’t be available by email or phone, and can’t answer your comments or  chart questions. I’ll be back on Skywriter next fall.  Hasta la Vista!  Donna

Posted by: Donna Cunningham | March 13, 2013

Pluto in Capricorn–Perfectionism and Rushing to Judgment

©3-13-13 by Donna Cunningham, MSW

Although I’m supposed to be writing my book about stelliums, I am so enjoying our interchanges here on Skywriter that it’s hard not to blog daily. (The book, incidentally, is going very well and will be out in Mid-May.)

Today I wanted to share briefly about something that’s been troubling me for quite some time, and that is how much more harsh and judgmental many people are since Pluto went into Capricorn. Capricorn does represent perfectionism and high standards, and Pluto wants to dig in and to transform the things it finds wrong.Together, however, they are anything but a kind combination. (I’m not saying that everyone is like this,  understand, but that it’s an increasing tendency in society as a whole.)

I see a pervasive snobbish, elitist tendency in the world at large of judging of anything or anyone that falls short of perfection. Empathy and giving others the benefit of the doubt seem to be qualities on the endangered list. So often, these harsh criticisms of both self and others are paired with a sense of entitlement and a lack of gratitude–nothing is ever good enough.

When I was quite young, I went as a lark to get my palm read by a wise and kindly older woman. She told me that I had great potential but a very low opinion of myself. She observed that I could not accept compliments, that I would cancel them out with self-criticism. She told me to compliment others whenever I saw something good about them, and that this would help me to love myself as well.

I have always followed her advice, and indeed it did help me to love myself, but, most of all, I learned to compliment others genuinely and to take great pleasure in doing so. It’s never flattery, for I seem incapable of feeding an overbearingly hungry ego with undeserved praise.

But I do see a rather harsh world that gives people little recognition of their efforts, and now, more than ever, when I admire something in someone, I will tell them so even if they are a complete stranger. If I can brighten someone’s day, it makes my day also.

Readers, please share in the comment section the ways you deserve to feel good about yourself. How are you working hard to make yourself and your world a better place? We all deserve more credit than this Pluto in Capricorn era is giving us.

Posted by: Donna Cunningham | March 11, 2013

What Positive Effects of Uranus in Aries do You See?

 ©3-11-13 by Donna Cunningham

In the last several posts, we’ve been exploring some effects that we could attribute to the transit of Uranus through Aries. We have nominated quite a few candidates for this phenomenon, but we’ve focused somewhat strongly on the more difficult and even alarming manifestations.

It’s true that Uranus transits can produce the some startling and even somewhat shocking new developments—it certainly shakes up the status quo!  (Not that the status quo couldn’t use some changes!) And yet Uranus transits also bring positive and much needed changes, particularly in inventions and helpful new technology. Aries is an innovative sign in itself, full of youthful energy and hope.

Today I like to hear Readers speculations about what positive changes we might see during this seven-year transit.  Read More…

Posted by: Donna Cunningham | March 9, 2013

More Observations about Uranus in Aries

©3-9-2013 by Donna Cunningham, MSW

When one of the outer planets—Uranus, Neptune, or Pluto—changes signs, astrologers’ first task is to observe closely what changes the new sign placement of that planet is ushering in. These slow-moving planets have such a long orbit around the Sun that they tend to remain in one sign for up to a decade or longer.

In the case of Uranus, the orbit takes 84 years, and its stay in a single sign is about seven years. Very few people are still alive who have Uranus in Aries natally, and I doubt whether a single practicing astrologer has lived through the transit of Uranus through that sign. Therefore, we’re all still groping to understand what Uranus in Aries means, and we may have some theories, but observing what is going on around us is the more valuable tool.

In the last post, I shared my observations about new phrases in our language that could be attributed to Uranus in Aries, and I invited readers to add their own observations in the comment section. As always, there was a lively discussion. It made me continue to think about Uranus in Aries, and to see more correlations between that sign and planet. Read More…

Posted by: Donna Cunningham | March 1, 2013

Grabbing Some Insight into Uranus in Aries

©3-1-2013 by Donna Cunningham, MSW

Uranus is the trendsetter planet, and when it shifts signs, we see new developments in style, language, and innovation. Most of all, it shows what the public is excited about. I’m noticing a couple of ways that Uranus’s shift into Aries has already affected our language. Read More…

Posted by: Donna Cunningham | February 14, 2013

Some Pitfalls of 12th House-Based Relationships

This series has brought me many new insights and much to ponder, in particular about the kinds of relationships those of us who are major introverts are prone to having. The isolation some 12th house types experience when we’re uncomfortable with being out in the world can make finding relationships where we feel connected and cherished so important that we’ll put up with all kinds of pain in a secret or codependent relationship.

I also often observe a deep sense of shame in people whose 12th house is prominent. We’ve already spoken about ways our extremely extroverted society tells us there’s something wrong with us. However, the shame can have a deeper cause. Often that sense of being unworthy comes from holding in family secrets that make them believe they don’t deserve love.

Note: If your 4th house or 10th house ruler falls in the 12th or if planets in the 12th aspect the 4th or 10th house cusp, it’s possible that you get into codependent relationships because one or both of your parents was addicted/alcoholic or otherwise seriously dysfunctional. If so, educating yourself about codependency can be the start of changing that pattern.

FREE DOWNLOAD: One of the chapters of my ebook, Counseling Principles for Astrologers explores relationship patterns of adult children of alcoholics, plus codependency and its implications for practicing astrologers in depth. Download it here: 2014 Ch7 CPA. 

At the same time that some of us suffer with those feeling of isolation, we’re pulled in two directions—part of us wants a deep love connection, but another part of us craves solitude and needs alone time on a regular basis. One painful outcome of juggling this set of conflicting needs is an unconscious decision to get involved with people who aren’t available or who are commitment phobic. Intense periods of merging are followed by crises in the relationship—anguishing break ups and heavenly making up. (Been there, done that to death, but am free of the pattern now.)

Another quality of many 12th house people is a sincere desire to serve, to do something to alleviate the suffering we see around us. But when our own unfulfilled needs enter the picture, we can become addicted to being needed, as it provides a relief from the sense of isolation and boosts our often-low self-esteem. Codependent relationships that spring from an urgent need to feel needed can readily turn toxic.

12th House-Based Relationships you’d be better off Kicking to the Curb: Secret connections, such as extramarital affairs. Drinking buddies, people who enable you and people you enable. Users and abusers. Secret enemies and those who undermine us—the part of ourselves that makes us our own worst enemy.

12th House-Based Relationships to Cherish: Spiritual teachers, inspirational speakers, and companions on the spiritual path. People who support your recovery from addictions and other self-defeating patterns. People you give to who give back by nurturing and supporting you when you go through tough times of your own.

CyberDating is a tempting way for 12th house types who don’t feel comfortable leaving their homes and going out to bars or parties to meet potential partners. We’ve all heard success stories as well as horror stories, so here are two good sites for learning how to ensure your safety: Psych Central – Tips for Safe Online Dating And Online Dating Safety Tips | Experience Online Dating – The Safe Way.

Articles on the 12th House and Relationships by other Astrologers

Here are some articles about Venus in the 12th by other astrologers who have a variety of insights and perspectives. If what they say about your own relationships fits, use it. If not, keep looking for some light on how to use the 12th well when it comes to love.

The Complete Miniseries on the 12th house:

Related Skywriter Posts about Releasing Toxic Relationships:

Posted by: Donna Cunningham | February 12, 2013

A Book about the 12th House that will Help You Love Yourself

Tracy Marks, who has been an astrologer and licensed therapist for decades, has written several significant and helpful astrological books with a solid psychological foundation, such as her immensely useful book on T-Squares.

In preparing this series on the 12th house, I was, frankly, awed to encounter her remarkably insightful and profoundly healing book on the 12th house: Tracy Marks, Your Secret Self: Illuminating the Mysteries of the Twelfth House, Ibis Press, Lake Worth, FL, 2010.

There’s a limit to how much I can quote without permission from the publisher, but here’s a taste of the jewels in her brilliant analysis of the 12th house Sun: Read More…

©2-8-2013 by Donna Cunningham, MSW

I wish they had a virtual metal detector to help uncover the gold that gets buried in the comment sections of many of the posts on this site. If I can be allowed to brag on my readers, they are a bright, introspective, insightful bunch. Getting back to blogging after more than a year away, I enjoy their input all the more.

 Since many of you don’t follow the comment section, I wanted to share some great exchanges and observations from the recent posts about the 12th house.

About an Empty 12th House: Mun asks, “My 12th House ( in Cancer ) is empty. Will you write an article about the empty 12th House?” Read More…

Posted by: Donna Cunningham | February 7, 2013

A D.I.Y. Tool for Analyzing Your 12th House Sign

©2-7-2013 by Donna Cunningham, MSW

 Today we’re going to roll up  our collective sleeves to find out how the sign on the 12th house cusp applies to the ways we handle the patterns the 12th house describes. Below you’ll find the tables and techniques to DIY (Do It Yourself.)

Even if your 12th house is empty, you can find out a lot about yourself from analyzing the sign on the cusp of that house.  Further insight would come from looking through your natal chart for the planet that rules that sign, since that’s the ruler of your 12th house.

For instance, if you have Cancer on the 12th, look for the Moon, which would be the 12th house ruler. If you have Sagittarius on the 12th, look for Jupiter. Consider the ruler’s sign, house and aspects to see where in your life you’re likely to act in a 12th house way.

A Template for Interpreting Your 12th House Sign

The tool you’ll work with here is one I’ve used extensively in my books and classes. It can be very productive in stimulating insight into any given combination of house and sign, planet in sign or house, or aspects between planets. Read More…

Posted by: Donna Cunningham | February 5, 2013

12th House People as Introverts: the Power of Solitude

©2-5-2013 by Donna Cunningham, MSW

 In this Skywriter series, we’re exploring the ways people express their 12th house planets. This little-understood and much maligned placement has traditionally been assigned a variety of unfortunate attributes. I’m hoping that together we can gain new insight into how it can be used in a balanced way, capitalizing on its strengths and avoiding self-destructive behaviors.

My impression, from doing charts for close to 45 years, is that many of us 12th house folks are introverts, and that we both love and need  our times of solitude. Many of us find that being in the company of others—especially in groups—for any length of time can be anywhere from distracting to draining.

One of the things that keeps us from feeling okay about ourselves is that the Western world places a judgment on introversion. It’s seen as being maladjusted, like it’s something we need to fix. We’re told we need get therapy, get a lover, or get a life.  Read More…

Posted by: Donna Cunningham | February 1, 2013

A Sensitive Guide to Planets in the 12th House—Guest Blog

2-1-2013 by Donna Cunningham, MSW

 As readers of this blog know, we’re in the middle of a series of articles exploring the 12th house of the astrology chart. I’m also simultaneously writing a book about stelliums, and this week the writing is going exceptionally well, so I haven’t had time to do anything on the series. However, this post is one of two planned with links to articles on the 12th by other authors.

In searching the internet for articles about the 12th house, I came across this excellent series by an astrologer named Julie O’Mahoney. I didn’t find a bio or contact information, so I couldn’t write to her. Although that kind of omission often serves as a red flag on an internet site,  in this case, the writing is illuminating, insightful and sensitive and the illustrations are exquisite. Perhaps she’s just an extremely evolved and exceptionally private 12th house type. Read More…

Posted by: Donna Cunningham | January 25, 2013

Has Knowing your Astrology Chart Ever Kept You out of Trouble?

©1-25-2013 by Donna Cunningham, MSW

 I don’t know why astrology is never included in those lists they so often print of things you can do to prevent health problems, economic ruin, fallen arches, and other woes. It’s certainly saved my bacon countless times in the nearly 45 years I’ve been following it!

How about you, Readers? Has knowing about a natal or transiting aspect in your chart ever warned you away from a pothole on your path? I’d love it if you’d share the story with us in the comment section of this post.  Read More…

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