NeptuneCafe's Vesta Page
There's much more on this asteroid at NeptuneCafe's Vesta Profiles. Where's your Vesta?
Vesta's basic principle in the horoscope is to
focus attention. Her house placement describes what she's focused on, and aspects to other planets and asteroids can enhance or distract
from that objective.
When forming hard aspects to Venus, Mars, Juno or Pluto, Vesta can signify sexual complexes involving abuse, shame, or guilt. Vesta-Saturn aspects make for workaholics and life commitments. Vesta-Moon is devoted to family, while Vesta-Sun and Vesta-Mars are devoted to self-fulfillment and self-promotion, often to the detriment of personal relationships. Vesta-Mercury aspects show devotion to ideas and the mind, while stressful aspects between these two can show lack of concentration and fuzzy thinking. When aspecting Jupiter or Neptune, Vesta carries a religious or spiritual dimension, sometimes accompanied by extraordinary insights or visions.
Vesta's sign describes the work or devotional style, and her prominence has a major influence on close relationships. Each Vesta placement described here is accompanied by a celebrity profile to illustrate the twelve principles. The profiles show how relevant Vesta is in the real world, and how her influence is modified by house placement and aspects.
Significant life passages unfold during secondary progressions involving Vesta. Progressions are based on the formula that one day after birth is symbolically equivalent to one year after birth. Vesta by transit is not especially important unless she is activating other Vesta progressions occurring simultaneously. Outer planet transits to Vesta – like progressions involving Vesta – bring new awareness about relationships and/or the professional life.
Vesta? What's that? Asteroid lovers know her as the Goddess of the Hearth and the Keeper of the Flame. She's associated with the Vestal Virgins in Roman mythology, but for most modern astrologers, she's an obscure piece of gravel that has no business cluttering up the horoscope. There's more at Vesta Profiles What's Vesta doing in your horoscope? You can order an Asteroid Report ($40), or get a personal reading that emphasizes asteroids. For more info, visit: readings
On January 15, 2009, Chesley Sullenberger's professional interest in airline safety made him the ideal pilot to bring down Flight 1549 after the jet's engines were disabled by a flock of geese. As part of his personal interest in emergency landings, he had studied how to ditch a plane in water – something very few pilots had the knowledge or skill to do so successfully. As he said during an interview with Katie Couric, "My entire life up to that moment had been in preparation for that moment."
Sullenberger's personal horoscope timed to that spectacular incident offers a case study that shows the importance of Vesta. Sully – as he's called – was born on January 23, 1951 (5:06 am; Danville, CA) with his Aquarius Sun opposite the Moon in Leo. Both luminaries form a square to Vesta in Taurus, so that this archetype fundamentally shapes his entire personality.
Since 2007 he has run his own safety consulting business, Safety Reliability, Inc., which provides "emergency management, safety strategies and performance monitoring to the aviation industry." Clearly, this is a life defined by safety and security issues. Without using Vesta, how would an astrologer have a clue about this chosen life path?
Vesta takes about 3 ½ years to make on orbit, and on that fateful day in January Vesta was in Taurus heading toward a Vesta Return in Sully's horoscope. The moment of the bird hit was 3:29 pm, January 15 overlooking New York City. At the time, transiting Vesta was exactly squaring Sully's Sun (orb 0º02'). It was the closest aspect in effect at the time of the incident. The second closest aspect was the transiting Ascendant at 9º Cancer – exactly sextile Sully's Vesta.
Astrologers will find other alignments that describe a likely incident at this time, including transiting Uranus conjunct his North Node (orb 0º06'). This connection relates to a karmic or fateful encounter that causes crisis. Since transiting Jupiter was simultaneously conjunct his Sun (orb 0º19'), Sully had a lot of protection from this great benefic.
The event chart features Chiron 19º Aquarius and Uranus at 19 and Uranus at 19º Pisces, putting them both less than ½ degree from forming an aspect to the U.S. Vesta. Uranus, the planet of sudden crises, was actually at 19º44' – only 0º01' from the exact sextile to Vesta. Transiting Pluto was forming a precise quincunx to the U.S. progressed Vesta, while in Sully's chart, the transiting Sun was trine his progressed Vesta.
In Katie Couric's interview, she asked him if he prayed as the plane was plummeting toward the Hudson River. He said no, that he was entirely focused on getting that plane down as safely as possible. The word he used – "focused" – is one of the keywords associated with Vesta. Vesta personalities are focused on what they're doing because there's nothing else more important. That kind of focus saved 155 lives.
Sullenberger was presented with the honorary key to New York City as well as his home town of Danville, California. The key is a Vesta symbol since it represents security (horary astrologers looking for lost keys, take note). Sullenberger was also given honorary membership to numerous pilot associations, security organizations, and fraternities, which is another Vesta reward. Whether one is considering transits and progressions to the pilot's natal horoscope or the U.S. horoscope, Vesta is the main astrological player in this heroic tale.
Vesta is closely sextile Jupiter (orb 0º11'), the ruler of his chart. Vesta is also trine Mercury, which is found near his Sagittarius Ascendant. From these combinations, the astrologer can see how Sully has personally benefitted (Jupiter) from Vesta's attributes, and how he has become an agent (Mercury) for safety and security issues (Vesta). When he was a young fighter pilot for the Air Force, he was already involved with safety issues as a member of the official aircraft accident investigation board. Sully has investigated accidents for the NTSB (National Safety Transport Board) and the USAF, lectures at Berkeley on safety issues, and has studied the psychology of crew to keep them functioning during a crisis.
The material on this page is excerpted from "Vesta, The Eternal Flame", written by Michael O'Reilly, NeptuneCafe's resident astrologer. For more info, visit www.dellhoroscope.com
Vesta was known as a symbol of protection for both the family and the state. Consequently, her role in the horoscope has both a personal and transpersonal meaning as the one who insures security for the people of our global village.
Astrologically, Kate is a classic Vesta type. The closest aspect her Taurus Sun (May 12, 1907; 5:47 pm; Hartford, CT) makes is a conjunction with Vesta, and since she was born just after the New Moon, Vesta is also within orb (8º) of being conjunct her Moon. Those who use the four major asteroids will note that the marriage asteroid Juno is conjunct her Scorpio Ascendant. This presents a conflict between these two archetypes. Kate tried marriage – once – and she didn't like it. In 1928 she married socialite businessman Ludlow Ogden Smith, which was the same year she made her debut on Broadway. She realized her ambitions and her marriage were not compatible. They divorced him in 1934, and she vowed to never marry again.
Spencer Tracy is also a Vesta personality, since Vesta is angular (April 5, 1900; 1:57 am; Milwaukee, WI). Vesta is found right on the fourth house cusp, where it anchors his psyche in his early Catholicism. At one point, he studied to be a priest, but later found his calling in films. He married Louise Treadwell in 1923, and the two stayed married until his death, even though for most of that time they lived separate lives. Spencer's Catholicism prevented him from divorcing, even though he and Kate lived together off and on for 25 years. So in Spencer's case, Vesta shows a lifelong devotion to Catholicism, which blocked him from having a legal relationship with the love of his life, Kate.
When Tracy and Hepburn were first matched up in 1941 for "Woman of the Year", they immediately fell in love. As one film critic observed in Heburn's obituary, " Hepburn and Spencer Tracy were at their most seductive when their verbal fencing was sharpest: it was hard to say whether they delighted more in the battle or each other." Both horoscopes reflect their love of verbal fencing. In Kate's chart, Mars the ruler of her chart, and is found in the third house of communication. It's conjunction with Uranus marks her sharp tongue and fierce independence.
She often said that an actor should never marry. "You're too involved with yourself, and your work is too demanding to give the necessary amount of attention to another human being. Inevitably, that person feels left out and becomes unhappy. We must never make people unhappy. Life is too short for that." This explanation comes right out of Vesta's playbook. Kate was one of America's greatest actors, and she was 100% devoted to her career. Juno is retrograde and forms hard aspects to Mercury and Pluto, so that she may want marriage and commitment, but Vesta is the overwhelming influence. Her focus is on developing her own talent and applying it to her profession.
Katharine Hepburn and
According to the American Film Industry (AFI), Katharine Hepburn is the greatest female star in American history. During her 73-year career she won more Oscars for
Their second film was much anticipated, but ultimately failed to deliver. "Keeper of the Flame" was their first and only attempt at film noir. The plot centers around a Citizen Kane-like industrial tycoon who is secretly a supporter of fascist groups during World War II America. The tycoon dies in the beginning of the film, and his wife, played by Katharine Hepburn, attempts to keep his secret from a prying reporter, played by Spencer Tracy. The film was too serious
and political, and the evident romantic tension between Tracy and Hepburn was never fleshed out.
But notice that "Keeper of the Flame" is the exact signature of the Vesta archetype. The ruthless underground faction is characteristic of Vesta's political manifestation. Although it wasn't what fans were expecting, it was totally within the framework of the two superstars' Vesta placement. Incredibly, both Spencer Tracy and Katharine Hepburn have Vesta located at 19º Taurus. The U.S. Vesta is also at 19º Taurus, so that during this geopolitically frightening time, they were doing their patriotic duty by warning Americans about fascism. Filming for the movie was undertaken in 1942 as transiting Saturn was conjunct their Vesta and the U.S. Vesta.
Best Actress than any other (four), while being nominated for twelve. Because of her non-conformist attitude, her popularity among movie-goers and Hollywood executives ebbed and flowed, but she hit her stride when MGM paired her with Spencer Tracy. Their nine films together are noted for the sizzling romantic sparks between the two, and are testament to Hollywood's worst kept secret – that the two were off-screen lovers for 25 years until his death in 1967.
The material on this page is excerpted from "Vesta: Keeper of the Flame", which was published as the cover story for Dell Horoscope
July 2009 issue, written by NeptuneCafe's resident astrologer