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Kobe Bryant and the Question of “Cuspers”BryantKImages

Kobe Bryant’s announcement that he is retiring from professional basketball surprised very few observers of the game. At 37, Bryant is ancient in basketball years, and his career had already been longer than most because he drafted right out of high school. Even though he remained an important player on the Laker’s roster, his productivity had declined sharply in recent years.


His retirement was also no surprise to astrologers. The seeds for Bryant’s decision were planted last January, when he suffered a season ending shoulder injury. At that time transiting Saturn was square his natal Saturn, an important point is one of the Saturn Cycles. It was at this time that Bryant realized, as he says in his announcement, that his body was no longer up the rigors of the game.


However, what really interests me about Bryant is not the fact that his retirement came at exactly the right time in his Saturn Cycle. That is to be expected. What caught my attention in his chart (click onKobe Bryant to see a partial horoscope done for noon on his birthday) is the fact that he is a “cusper”. That is to say, he was born on a day when the Sun changed signs.


One of the problems with Sun sign astrology is that it Sun doesn’t change signs at exactly the same hour of the same day every year. Sometimes, depending where you live, the Sun might leave Leo and enter Virgo late on Aug. 22. In other years, again depending on where you were born, it might make this change early on Aug 24. And even if the change in signs occurs on Aug. 23, as we would expect, people born on that day would have to know the precise time of their birth in order to know if they were born with the Sun in Leo, or Virgo.


People born on the cusp of a sign often think of themselves as having qualities of both sign. I think this is a fallacy. I agree with Rob Hand who compared the transition from one sign to another to a quantum shift. It takes place instantaneously. Your Sun sign has to be one of the other. Of course, the Sun sign is only one part of a complete horoscope, so it is not unusual for people to display attributes of another sign, including the sign just before or after their Sun sign.


In the case of Kobe Bryant, if he was born before 7:30 AM (EDST), he is a Leo by Sun sign. If he was born afterwards he is a Virgo. Since, throughout his career, Bryant was noted for his unwillingness to give up the basketball, and since in that game the guy with the ball gets all of the attention, I’m voting for an early morning birth for him. Also, he announced his retirement in the form of a poem. What could be more Leo than that?


If you were born on or near a day when the Sun changed signs, Get ye to your birth certificate! If the time is not listed there, ask your mother or look for hospital records. Don’t waste your time dithering on the cusp. Find out, once and for all, in which sign your Sun is placed.

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