Planets in antiscia are relevant for everyone.
Antiscia are like shadows; points reflected symmetrically around the cardinal axis. The cardinal axis is made up of the zero-degree (starting) point of each of the four cardinal signs: 0 Aries, Cancer, Libra, Capricorn. These points mark the beginning of each season, at the summer and winter solstice, and the spring and fall equinox. When planets or points are in antiscia, they precisely (I use 1 to 2 degree orbs) reflect one another across the cardinal axis; the Cancer/Capricorn (solstitial) or Aries/Libra (equinoctial) axes.
Because antiscia are reflections across the cardinal axis (an axis marking the turning of the seasons) and because all living things respond to and interact with seasonal shifts, the cardinal axis is an axis or point we all share. Therefore, planets in antiscia and contra-antiscia are thought to be felt or experienced by all.
While my monthly list of antiscia highlights what is on the cardinal axis right now - meaning in a mundane sense, is an aspect for the world - it is also quite useful to note transiting antiscional points (to natal planets) in one's own birth chart.
With the example images above, Venus and Saturn are in antiscia (left) and in contra-antiscia (right). We might think about what Venus with Saturn means. Love, creativity, beauty, desires, and relationship meets with the need for structure, discipline, distance, and practicality. Saturn cools Venus down; it solidifies, constricts, or focuses Venus' significations. Maybe there's a preference for a minimalist aesthetic or the enjoyment of abstracted or conceptual ideas and designs. We could ask: how might this play out in world events? -or, if it's a personal transit: We could see it as a time to get more serious about something we love, make a stronger commitment, or move into a more contemplative space and even let some things go.
How much do we need?
What is truly important?
If Venus wants to create something of beauty or enjoy something, Saturn prefers it be realistic, truthful, enduring, and have real world merit.
I think working proactively with planetary antiscia combinations can be a good way to harness the energy of the day. It can also be a great way to learn, both about astrology and life in general. In addition to the list of antiscia I post, I will periodically delineate planetary pairs. But even without my delineation, you can use the list by simply considering what the two planets in connection mean.
Some good reference books for help with planetary pairs and keywords include:
The Combination of Stellar Influences by Reinhold Ebertin
Rules for Planetary Pictures by Alfred Witte
Horoscope Symbols by Robert Hand
It takes practice to begin seeing planets in antiscia in a regular chart like the one below. Because antiscia and contra-antiscia are reflections across the cardinal axis, we count degrees opening from the zero cardinal points to find connections. For instance, 25 degrees Cancer is the reflection of 5 degrees Gemini, and 12 degrees Aries is the reflection of 18 degrees Virgo. As you can imagine, this is sometimes tricky to discern right away. To do this quickly, it is much easier to utilize software. Morinus offers a free open-source program which does the calculations for you. And I will show you here how to easily find points in antiscia and contra-antiscia using two other programs.
Using Jimi Hendrix as an example, let's examine the planets antiscia and contra-antiscia in his birth chart.
As you can see in the chart to the left, planets in antiscia don't necessarily pop out at you. With repetition you will know that all fixed signs are always antiscia and contra-antiscia to one another, and cardinal signs are always antiscia/contra-antiscia to mutable. See the diagram on my worksheet page. However, I recommend working with degree-based connections and small orbs, not just the whole signs.
In the case of Hendrix, we see early degrees of mutable Gemini and Sagittarius occupied, as well as late degrees of cardinal Cancer. This draws my attention immediately, since I know that Gemini and Cancer are connected by antiscia, and Cancer and Sagittarius by contra-antiscia. Next we would need to figure out if these are close enough connections to be very strong. The closer the orb the better!
[I recommend less than 2 degrees, and I prefer less than 1 degree.]
My favorite program for working with charts in a symmetrical way (midpoints, aspects, antiscia, planetary pictures, etc.) is Nova Chartwheels below. Here, the connections are so clearly visible they nearly leap out at you. Nova also offers a list of antiscia by sign and degree for every planet and sensitive point in the chart. This is very helpful when considering transits or connections across charts in synastry and so forth.
When we examine Hendrix's chart we see the Sun is posited at 4 degrees 50 minutes Sagittarius, and Jupiter sits at 24 deg 51 min Cancer; this is roughly 5 Sagittarius and 25 Cancer. Looking at the list of antiscia (above) we see the reflection for the Sun is 25+ Capricorn (an opposition to Jupiter in Cancer), and Jupiter's reflection is 5+ Gemini (opposite the natal Sun position in Sagittarius). Oppositions in the list reflect contra-antiscia. With the case of his Moon Uranus connection, we see the antiscion points are conjunct the natal placements - roughly 2 degrees Gemini and 28 Cancer respectively.
The software Solar Fire is shown to the right and below. With this program you can make antiscia charts, then utilize an outer wheel to examine antiscia and contra-antiscia around the natal chart - just as you would when looking at transits or synastry charts. Here, antiscia/contra-antiscia connections look like conjunctions (highlighted in pink).
Summary for Hendrix
- Moon antiscia Uranus
- Sun contra-antiscia Jupiter
- Moon contra-antiscia Mercury
An alternate way to find antiscia in Solar Fire is to use the Aries Point in the chart. You will then search under Reports in the side panel and look under Midpoint Trees. There you will find all of the symmetrical openings (antiscia) around the Aries Point. Make sure to change your Modulus to 90'00.