Eclipses in astrology
November 3, 2020
Photograph by Jongsun Lee
Eclipses play an essential role in astrology. Both lunar and solar eclipses can have a significant and long-lasting effect on the houses, planets, and signs they influence. A good understanding of the astronomy of eclipses and the astrological effects on the chart can help in making accurate predictions.
The two types of eclipses influential in astrology are the solar and lunar eclipse. The word eclipse means the total or partial obscuring of one celestial body by another. A lunar eclipse occurs when the Earth blocks the Sun and the shadow of the Earth falls upon the Moon. A solar eclipse occurs when the Moon blocks the Sun, and the shadow of the Moon falls upon the Earth. Lunar eclipses occur at night, during a full Moon, can last for 1-2 hours, and there are five per year on average. Solar eclipses occur during the daytime, during a new Moon, lasting for a few minutes, and there are 2 to 4 per year.
Some astronomical terms are important to understand the different types of eclipses. Umbra refers to the inner darkest part of a shadow when the light is completely blocked, this is associated with a total eclipse. Penumbra refers to the partial obscuring of the light source, this is associated with a partial eclipse. Antumbra refers to an annular eclipse when the occluding planet is within the light source.
There are three types of lunar eclipses:
- Penumbral- This is when the Moon passes through the Earth’s penumbra, causing a subtle dimming of the moonlight. This can be total or partial.
- Partial Lunar- This is when part of the Moon is in the penumbra and part in the umbra.
- Total Lunar- This is when the Moon is within the umbra, it will have a reddish color.
The below images should clarify the different types of lunar eclipses. During a lunar eclipse, the Moon does not become fully dark but may turn a reddish color. This is because the Earth reflects the light of the Sun similar to sunrise and sunset.
Total Lunar Eclipse
Solar eclipses divided into three general types:
- Total solar- The Earth intersects the umbra of the Moon’s shadow.
- Annular- The Earth intersects the Moon’s shadow at a greater distance from the Sun, causing a ring-like appearance of the Sun.
- Partial- The Earth intersects the penumbra of the moon shadow.
On the birth chart, we will see the full or new Moon associated with Rahu and Ketu within 18 degrees 31 minutes of the Sun and Moon. The eclipse’s effects may occur six months after the event. In movable signs, they occur within a month. In fixed signs, they occur within 1 to 3 months. In dual signs, they occur within 3 to 6 months. The eclipses generally occur in signs that are in opposition to each other for about two years then move onto the next signs in opposition. The cycle repeats every nine years or so. The chart below shows the recent and upcoming eclipses.
Eclipse Dates & Times (Eastern Time)
|Penumbral LUNAR Eclipse||2020 January 10||14:21:10||20° 00 min Cancer|
|Penumbral LUNAR Eclipse||2020 June 5||15:12:15||15° 34 min Sagittarius|
|Annular SOLAR Eclipse||2020 June 21||2:41:19||0° 21 min Cancer|
|Penumbral LUNAR Eclipse||2020 July 5||0:44:16||13° 38 min Capricorn|
|Penumbral LUNAR Eclipse||2020 November 30||4:29:32||8° 38 min Gemini|
|Total SOLAR Eclipse||2020 December 14||11:16:26||23° 08 min Sagittarius|
|Total LUNAR Eclipse||2021 May 26||7:13:43||5° 26 min Sagittarius|
|Annular SOLAR Eclipse||2021 June 10||6:52:29||19° 47 min Gemini|
|Partial LUNAR Eclipse||2021 November 19||3:57:17||27° 14 min Taurus|
|Total SOLAR Eclipse||2021 December 4||2:42:51||12° 22 min Sagittarius|
|Partial SOLAR Eclipse||2022 April 30||16:27:54||10° 28 min Taurus|
|Total LUNAR Eclipse||2022 May 16||00:13:58||25° 18 min Scorpio|
|Partial SOLAR Eclipse||2022 October 25||6:48:30||2° 00 min Scorpio|
|Total LUNAR Eclipse||2022 November 8||6:01:57||16° 01 min Taurus|
|Annular Total SOLAR Eclipse||2023 April 20||0:12:19||29° 50 min Aries|
|Penumbral LUNAR Eclipse||2023 May 5||13:33:50||14° 58 min Scorpio|
|Annular SOLAR Eclipse||2023 October 14||13:54:56||21° 08 min Libra|
|Partial LUNAR Eclipse||2023 October 28||16:23:49||5° 09 min Taurus|
|Penumbral LUNAR Eclipse||2024 March 25||3:00:05||5° 07 min Libra|
|Total SOLAR Eclipse||2024 April 8||14:20:37||19° 24 min Aries|
|Partial LUNAR Eclipse||2024 September 17||22:34:13||25° 41 min Pisces|
|Annular SOLAR Eclipse||2024 October 2||14:49:02||10° 04 min Libra|
Eclipses present drastic events that may lead to a new life path. These are usually obstacles and difficulties which allow us to grow internally and externally. Solar eclipses may bring about changes in our external position, fame, wealth, infamy, dishonor, health problems, and difficulties with the government. Lunar eclipses are associated with internal emotional changes, family issues, spiritual growth, and relationship issues. The importance of eclipses is that they allow us to grow through the obstacles we face. Astrology gives us a guide as to the difficulties we may face in life; we have the choice to turn those obstacles into opportunities for deeper spiritual growth and understanding of the nature of this material world. If, through our obstacles, we learn that this world is temporary, giving us the result of past karma, and a place where difficulties are common, we can grow through this understanding. If we understand that our true nature is spiritual, and we strive toward a spiritual path, all obstacles will lead to great success.
Eclipses associated with Rahu, Ketu, Saturn, and Mars in the natal chart can be quite difficult. Eclipses associated with benefic planets are generally not as challenging. Of course, we have to look at the chart as a whole and all the different influences to see what effect the eclipse will have. Eclipses associated with malefic houses, malefic planets, and inimical signs cause more difficulties.
Effects of an Eclipse on the Houses
First house- Here we could expect the development of health problems, loss of money, loss of position, a lack of energy, subject to criticism or humiliation, and illness to the father.
Second house- Expect a poor diet, weakness to the body, a lack of willpower, laziness, and a loss of income.
Third house- Expect illness to the younger sibling or trouble in this relationship. We can also see a loss of skill, confidence, courage, and the ability to communicate effectively with others.
Fourth house- Here we can see the loss of home, difficulties in family life including arguments, separation, and discord. Significant mental disturbances including anxiety, depression, anger, and frustration can be seen.
Fifth house – Trouble related to school and education are likely. Difficulties with children, limited social relationships, loneliness, along with a weakening of spiritual life and faith are possible.
Sixth house- Legal issues, health problems, obstacles related to work, and difficulties in dealing with foreigners are possible.
Seventh house – Problems related to marriage, relationships, and business are likely.
Eighth house- Illness, death, humiliation, severe mental anxiety, depression, and separation from loved ones can be seen.
Ninth house – General misfortune, bad luck, illness to the father, problems related to the government, and a lack of spiritual enthusiasm or faith, are seen.
Tenth house- Difficulties related to the work, loss of income, conflict with seniors, and lack of success are seen.
11th house- A loss of influence, the frustration of ambition, monetary loss, and disturbance in family life.
12th house- Health problems, isolation, depression, monetary loss, imprisonment, and death.
Chart for November 30th, 2020
Here we see that the Sun and Moon are opposite of each other, hence a lunar eclipse. This involved the sign of Taurus and Scorpio. We can expect internal turmoil as a society which will lead to deep growth, courage, and strength in spite of fear. Trust between allies may be weakened but from this new stronger partnerships can develop.