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The Astrology of Killing

There is probably no moral question more explosive than the use of deadly force. We hear this question being raised by the “Black Lives Matter” activists. We’ve also seen it in protests against the death penalty and by pacifists who oppose warfare for any reason. Astrology offers not easy answers to this question, but it does help us understand the different reasons that people kill.


Mars is the active planet is most violent deaths. Mars describes deadly force used in a moment of passion, or in an intense “fight or flight” situation. With Mars, the morality of the issues typically depends on one’s point of view. The perpetrator of the killing, whether it was done to protect a loved one or carried out in a moment of blind anger, is likely to feel justified, while family and friends of the victim are often driven to murderous passions of their own. For this reason, Mars violence tends to be cyclic.


Saturn kills because it is the law, or tradition, or necessary to protect valued institutions. The death penalty for criminals is the way of killing we most often associate with Saturn, but Saturn is also an important factor in the mass killing of war. Though we typically think of Mars as the warrior, and on the battlefield it’s Martian passion and Martian “kill or be killed” thinking that dominates, the planning and perpetrating of war is carried out in a much more dispassionate manner, by people whose chief interest is to protect and advance the interests of the institution (or nation) to which they are loyal.


Saturn kills out of what the Saturn ruled person sees as necessity, and often this kind killing is accompanied by regret. Questions are asked. “Were the fire-bombs rained down on civilian population in Germany during World War II morally superior to the crimes committed by the Nazis?” “Was Vietnam, the first Iraqi War, the second Iraqi War, Afghanistan or (fill in the blank) necessary?” Saturn offers no easy answers to these moral questions, except what seemed necessary and practical at that time.


Saturn killings bring regret and moral questions. Regret has nothing to do killing carried out in the name of Uranus. Uranus kills the old in order to make room for the new. Ideally, this is done on an intellectual level, but when the old offers resistance, (via Saturn) then Uranus has no choice but to resort of violence. The American, French and Russian revolutions are all examples of this.


Many times the Uranian killer is inflamed by an idea or a cause that, to his or her minds, transcends moral questions. Other times, he or she kills simply because a pervasive hatred of the old way of doing thing. In either case, the morality of their actions eventually catches up. When a Uranian revolution is successful it automatically becomes a Saturn institution, in which the sins and regrets of the past eventually have to be confronted.


The most frightening kind of killing is killing done under the influence of Pluto. These are killings in which passion, necessity and politics do not matter. These are murders perpetuated by a faceless authority, or an unknown person, without rhyme or reason. We might think of terrorists’ acts as being an example of this kind of killing, but if we look closely, most terrorist killings are done under the influence of Uranus, or (in case of many killings motivated by religion) Saturn.


The violence of Pluto has more to do with killings carried out by a police state, or organized attempts at genocide. The work of serial killers may also fall in this category. There is no argument about the immorality of such acts. However, Pluto also brings up questions concerning the value of life and the inevitability of death, questions that are crucial to issues like death with dignity and abortion. The morality of these matters is continually being debated.

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