About       Susan       John     Astro*News     Astro*Reports       Contact Us       Order      Music   Articles

When Jupiter rules the sky...

It's time to...

When Jupiter is the "bucket handle"(l.), acting more like a pump handle, get working on your "bucket list"...

By John Townley, February 2011

Some time ago we remarked on the possible meanings of Saturn being either part of, or outside, the bowl of the outer planets, marking a shift between things Saturnian (government, the establishment, etc.) working either with or literally in opposition to social progress. When Saturn is the handle of a bucket chart, it tends to make governments work against the interests of the people they serve, and once Saturn rejoins the overall pack, reform governments appear (sometimes with accompanying strife) along with real, though sometimes desperate, progress overall. [Click here for the definition of a bucket chart, and other basic sky patterns]

It shouldn’t be surprising, then, to note that there are also notable effects when Jupiter does the same thing – either tucks inside the bowl or stands out from it like a bucket handle. The effects, naturally, aren’t the same as with Saturn, and there does appear to be a distinct Jupiter-handle syndrome. Whereas Saturn in opposition tends to bring resistance and conflict between the powers that be and the populus under them, Jupiter seems to have a forcing, pumping effect that can be the engine for boom times or can help bail out hard times. It’s worth taking a look at it right now, as Jupiter is about to exit the bowl just as Saturn goes back into it, so there is a major switch underway. In this Jupiter-Saturn opposition opening period, with Jupiter ripping through Aries, we can expect a shift into a new phase for another half-decade or more…recent events in Egypt and elsewhere are likely just the overture to the first act...


For six months of each bucket year, Jupiter stands alone (l.) and for the other six months mixes into a splash (c.), though every other year its bucket is interrupted by Mars (r.), which actually just intensifies the effect from that side of the sky.

Before looking at what it might mean, a further look at what it actually is. It’s not five or six years of constant bucket skies, with Jupiter at the helm. That simply can’t happen, for any planet. At best, Jupiter can command the skies only half the year, when the Sun and inner planets are in the season and signs opposite its position, along with the outer planets. And it can manage that only once every other year, as Mars will wander into its hemisphere half the time as well (though in a way, Mars only adds to the effect). Then, it can only do that for half a month at a time, when the Moon is inside the bowl. So what we’re really talking about is not even a preponderance of position but a significant plurality – it simply happens more often, for about six months at a time yearly (and then only two weeks of each month), in three out of perhaps six years. Still, that’s a lot of Jupiter, since it’s a very domineering presence, being the king of the planets in size and gravitational effect, and it’s the only bucket handle planet happening throughout the period. Give Jupiter an inch, and it will blow it up into a mile...

When Jupiter is regularly the bucket handle, it seems more like a pump handle, as they appear to be times when things are swinging to extremes, pumping the volume into systems overload, for better or worse, richer or poorer. It suggests a wide variety of ambitious, and sometimes conflicting forces that aren't stable and often quite out of control. Whether the period will start with a bang or drag itself out of difficulty depends on whether the leading edge of the bowl is an outer planet (bigger, more important change) or Saturn (stagnation or recession)...essentially, whether the year just preceding it has been dominated by an outer planet locomotive chart or a Saturn locomotive. Here are the last century's periods, by example:

Pre WWI 1908-1914– End of the glory days of the wealthy classes, pumping up for war and revolution. Think Downton Abbey...began with a Uranus locomotive.

Pre WWII 1933-41 – extended period, pumping up out of Great Depression economy, New Deal, the meteoric rise of fascism, from conjunction with Neptune to Saturn/Uranus, all the way from Virgo to Taurus. Followed a Saturn bucket and then T-cross, then locomotive, so depression drove Jupiter's attempts to bust out.

Post WWII 1946-51 – pumping up a post-war economy, the Marshall Plan and European recovery after painful collapse. Came out of a Uranus locomotive, revolutions and the Cold War.

Mid-60s 1962-68 – pumping up a new Great Society, on a war footing, in the US, tumultuous generational social change almost everywhere. Another one with Uranus locomotive preceding.

Mid-70s 1973-79– recovery from Vietnam, oil crisis economy shift. Saturn locomotive preceded, this one barely got off the ground. 

Mid-80s 1985-93 – Extended period, starting with deregulation by Reagan and Thatcher governments, pumping up markets, reorganization of Eastern Europe, first Iraq War. Came out of a Pluto-led bundle, massive world change in the making which Jupiter then supercharged.

Early 2000s 2000-2006– Revisitation of Reaganomics, pumping up markets until near-Depression market crisis. Began with a Pluto locomotive, the transit of that planet to USA Ascendant, 9-11, and the beginning of the end of single superpower dominance.

When shorter sky cycles focus around Jupiter, the whole world heats up in the process...

What’s the mechanism here, and how are the rhythms of the sky altered during this period? We actually covered it in essence in Islands In The Sky, pointing out that when a planet is stuck way out in the sky, in the context of any smaller, reinforcing cycle [diurnal (daily), lunar (monthly) or solar (yearly)]  it becomes the one rare hit during a full half the cycle. Thus, it becomes both long-awaited and then long-remembered, while the other planetary hits come and go quickly in a jumbled bunch, easily confused or forgotten and supplanted in effect.  Indeed, its six-month seasons during its often six-year bucket period themselves are long-awaited, as the other half of the year is mostly a splash sky with no real focus, making the Jupiter half an even stronger pulse. Adding to the interplanetary effect is our position in our own orbit, as when Jupiter is out there alone geocentrically, it means that heliocentrically Jupiter and Earth are actually together on one side of the solar system, in the vicinity of perigee and maximum gravitational effect (the heart of the retrograde shift phenomenon), with everything else off on the other side. Physically, it’s when Jupiter has its greatest influence on us. Numerically, with the basic six-on-six-off cycle both monthly and yearly, it is a clue to Jupiter's great power as a fundamental formulator and reinforcer of the 12-month year and Zodiac, not to mention the 12-year Chinese Zodiac.

Now we're about to begin another Jupiter handle period, coming out of a Saturn locomotive, so it is about dragging up out of near-depression, similar to the 1930s or 1970s stretch. The next one after that (2024-2032, a long one) will be coming off Pluto, so it might be more like the shift from the 1970s to the 1980s, where the economy called the shots and changed the world's political balance through the downsizing of a major superpower.

To give you an overview (2011-17) of the evolution of the coming Jupiter skies ruling the teens, see this animated version. (It's a big download, 7 meg, so give it time). It dramatically shows how the skies morph from  bucket to splash and back, and how when the inner planetary chaff flies away, Jupiter is left alone ruling the sky a large part of the time.

So in the end, when Jupiter rules the skies, it's a time for high-level ambition to push through and make things happen, even at great risk, when opportunity abounds for those who are ready to ride the crest of a wave or the skin of a bubble. That period is again upon us and will remain so for the majority of the teens decade of the 21st century. It's a time to try for things you might not be able to do otherwise, things you might most want to achieve while life grants you the opportunity, despite the danger of overstepping safety limits. In short, when Jupiter is the bucket handle, it's time to get on with your bucket list while the power to do so is palpably raging all around...

Not a newsletter subscriber already?    Subscribe Free Here!

Let us know what you think! Write us:  townley@astrococktail.com

And every day, keep in touch with our Astrology in the News section...please take a look!
-- Breaking news from around the globe, plus articles, reviews, it's all happening there, changes daily...

  Copyright © John Townley 2011. All rights reserved.
About Us Reports | Readings | John | Susan | Books | ArticlesNewsLinks | Music | Contact | Site Map