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Beyond Traditional Astrology – Uranian Part 1: Cupido

Traditional Astrology

Before I get into Uranian, let’s take a look at what is involved in traditional astrology. If you’re an astrology, you probably don’t think about how much you actually include in your chart interpretation. You just dive in and read them like a book. As a traditional astrologer of more decades than I’d like to admit to, I found that when I took a look the components that go into interpreting a horoscope, I was astounded at the enormously complex puzzle of components that need to be taken into consideration when reading a chart. 

Traditional tropical Chart
Traditional Tropical Chart

Whether you are casting Tropical or Sidereal charts, they’re read pretty much the same. You look at houses 1-12 with special attention to the ascendant, descendant, MC, and IC. You read the signs, degrees, cusps, planets, asteroids, and sometimes, fixed stars. The native’s story emerges according to those indications and the relationships that all of those form with each other. 

We also consider decanates, elements, qualities, declination, direct, stationary, retrograde motion, lunations, and a host of other, lesser-used indications, including Arabic Parts, Moon Wobble, and more. 

Specialized charts, such as arcs, returns, relationship, health, prenatal, mundane, and synastry still use the same system of delineation that natal charts do. The meaning of Aries on the 4th cusp is nearly identical in any chart. It’s merely adjusted according to its relationship to the rest of the horoscope.

Cusp and House Systems

To further complicate matters, there are seemingly innumerable cusp systems to choose from. Some of the more commonly employed are:

Campanus – Equal – Regiomontanus – Morinus – Placidus – Koch – Topocentric

Porphyry – Whole Sign – Meridian – Zero Aries – Whole Sign

There are more but most astrologers use either Placidus, Koch, or Topocentric.

Many astrologers don’t fully understand how these house systems are calculated and why or when they should use one over another.

Thankfully, computers do all the math for us now. I remember the dark ages when I toiled, with furrowed brow, over the mountains of math, algorithms, conversions, ephemerides, and tables needed to produce my Placidus system charts.  

Planets, Asteroids, and Parts, Oh, My

No matter what cusp system you prefer, all astrology uses the same planets: Mercury, Venus, Mars, Jupiter, Saturn, Neptune, and Pluto. The Sun and Moon are lumped in with the planets for convenience. The Moon’s North and South Nodes are also present in most charts. 

Astrologers also consider the major asteroids: Ceres, Pallas, Juno, Chiron, and Vesta. There are a lot more asteroids that are sometimes included. The only Arabic part commonly included in a traditional chart is the Part of Fortune. Sometimes Transneptunian planets: Cupido, Hades, Zeus, Kronos, Apollon, Admetus, Vulcanus, and Poseidon, but these are most often reserved for Uranian Astrology.

Aspects and Orbs

What brings traditional astrology to life are aspects. Although there are more the twenty aspects that can be employed in reading a chart, the most commonly used are conjunction, trine, square, quincunx (inconjunct), and opposition. 

Aspects include an understanding of orbs—a concept that has baffled many of my students. If a trine is 120° but can be as little as 110° or as much as 130° when the Sun and Moon are concerned, and only 115° or 125° in others, what’s the difference and how can a new astrologer know what’s right? In addition, how much orb to use is generally a matter of preference. There are no hard and fast rules.

Today, most astrologers rely on the computer to tell them what is in aspect and what is not, but in my never-to-be-humble opinion, it isn’t that cut and dried. There are nuances and variables that must be taken into account that a computer can’t.

Horoscope Mandala

You can see, and probably have already figured out, that traditional astrology is like an intricate, complex mandala. I’m not complaining, I love astrology and the hunt for just the right interpretation of the beautiful web of patterns that horoscopes create to tell a story. But what if there was a way to discover even more? There is; Uranian astrology, sometimes called the Hamburg School, Moveable Dial, and a few other names that are more obscure.

Uranian astrology does away with the usual method of looking at houses and cusps and pays more attention to the qualities of the signs: Cardinal, Fixed, and Mutable. This system looks at midpoints, axis points, and harmonics. The Sun and Moon carry more weight than the other planets (usually). The Nodes, Midheaven and what is called the Aries point are the bones of a moveable Dial chart. 

Movable Dial chart example

Example Movable Dial

In the early 20th century, Alfred Witte and Friedrich Sieggrun were members of the then famous Kepler Circle. During WWI, they looked for a way to use astrology to accurately predict bombardments.

Regular astrology couldn’t pinpoint the timing well-enough, so Witte and a group of other brilliant astrologers threw away the rule-book and developed a system that used a moveable dial that combined symmetry, harmonics, the cardinal axis, hard aspects, midpoints, symmetry, and the eight hypothetical planets that represent energy points in the universe to precisely predict world events, personal psychology, and life events. 

At this point in my life, I don’t claim to be a Uranian astrologer. I’m still a student, but at every turn, I discover jaw-dropping accuracy and revelations about people and events. If you haven’t taken a serious look at how this enhances your work as an astrologer, I encourage you to do so. Most astrology programs worth their salt now include dials, so you can, at the click of a mouse or a tap of a finger, switch back and forth between a dial chart and a Tropical or sidereal chart. There is much to be discovered, especially when you include the Transneptunian planets (not real planets, but energy points). 

Transneptunians can also be included in a traditional chart where they add a lot to your interpretations. And looking at the chart in dial form opens up a whole new door of information and clarity.I will be writing more about the Uranian system of reading a chart in the future. Here, I’d like to introduce you to the Transneptunian planets: 

Transneptunian glyphs


Cupido’s symbol is created by combining the glyphs for Jupiter and Venus. Naturally, then, this point is about what Jupiter brings: protection, positive influences, abundance, and peaceful persuasion. Venus contributes cooperation, harmony, love of life, a positive life-outlook, love of social interaction, harmony in partnerships, and friends. Combined, they promise good health, loyal friends, general life and financial stability. Cupido encourages us to look for greater horizons in life. Look for it in a traditional chart to see where these things play out. 

Depending on Cupido’s interaction with other planets, she can create:

  • artistic talent (Venus), abundance and romance (Venus, Mars, and Uranus)
  • genius or near genius (Uranus and Neptune)
  • a knack for taking full advantage of opportunities to enhance your life (Moon and Sun)
  • gifts and talents with mechanics and science (Mars and Mercury)
  • literary talent and a keen intellect (Mercury and Jupiter),
  • a talent and near-genius ability with business (Saturn)

Overall, Cupido brings a warm nature, positive devotion, pleasure, and gain through others, especially in-laws and relatives. She adds an overall charisma that works for you.

Difficult aspects to other planets still carry all of Cupido’s benefits, but they will be more difficult to express and bring to light. Extreme effort will be required to recognize and utilize the wonderful gifts that Cupido brings. You may be an extraordinary artist but believe you are only mediocre, or others don’t recognize your genius because it’s unusual, avant garde, or something completely new that makes the public uneasy. 

Below, I’ve illustrated how to use Cupido in both Tropical and Urnian charts using Jackson Pollock as an example. 

Jackson Pollock’s Tropical Chart

Jackson Pollock was a ground-breaking artist. Born in 1912, he created a completely new school of art that was emotion-based rather than image-based. His style is known as Splatter.

He led a tormented life of deep emotions, alcoholism, and depression. His abusive, alcoholic father abandoned the family when Jackson was a child. Tragically, Jackson died at age 44 when he drunkenly drove his car into a tree.

Jackson Pollock and friend in his studio
Image: Jackson Pollock – 1912-1956

In Pollock’s Tropical chart, his Cupido is in Leo in his 2nd house of security and possessions. The sign ruling the house, and although Neptune in 21 Cancer isn’t yet conjuncting Cupido, he throws his influence over the house like a watercolor wash. 

Jackson Pollock’s Tropical Astrology Chart

January 28, 1912, 2:13 pm MST +7:00 – Cody, Wyoming

Cupido, in 1° Leo, is opposite his Aquarius Sun in the restrictive, deep undercurrent 8th house. The Sun strains to be free and pushes at the expansive, live-large 9th cusp to be let in. But there is a complication. When a planet is in the sign of the next house, there is often doubt and hesitancy to enter. 

In Pollock’s chart, Aquarius is pulled like a magnet to its native planet, Uranus in the 9th. On the other hand, Uranus in the promised land of the 9th is in 29° Capricorn. The 29th degree of any sign or planet is stressful and freedom-loving Uranus strains against the boundaries and rule-following Capricorn. Pollock would have had a lifetime of contradictory feelings about his deep secret life (8th) and wanting an expansive, emotionally free, life (9th). His art illustrates that conflict.

Since the Sun and Uranus are conjunct, Cupido is also opposite Uranus. Pollock was driven to create art that was unlike anything anyone had ever seen. He wanted it to wake people up, make them feel their pain and joy, create an explosion of emotion in the viewers.

Cupido, down in the 2nd in Leo has Pollock yearning for inner fulfilment, he was filled to the breaking point with a need to express the feelings Cupido poured into him but was never satisfied that his works fully expressed his deep and explosive emotions. Aquarius Sun gives him a desire to create something different and new in art—something bold and in-your-face powerful, especially with Cupido’s sextile to the god of war, Mars. 

Pollock's painting, Tornados at Sunset
Image: – Tornados at Sunset

Mars is “Just do it” and make it bold, and fiery. Be noticed! Kaboom! Pow! Bam! Mars is in his 12th house of  endings, completion, seclusion, solitude, detachment, things hidden, karma, and self-undoing. He is in Taurus, which is relentless to reach a goal and succeed, but in the 12th house fame and recognition are hard-won. This is frustrating and Pollock suffered for his art that, for a long time, no one seemed to understand or appreciate. Still he had fire in him and, because of Cupido, that fire was channeled into love for his art.

There’s a lot more to see in this extraordinary man’s horoscope, alcoholism, drive, self-doubt and a deep need to be noticed and recognized, but this post is about Cupido and how it adds detail and depth to the traditional astrology reading. Cupido has many more facets to her lovely gifts, and I encourage you to read more about her and start adding Cupido to your astrology readings. 

At the time of this writing,  are no books and only few videos devoted to Cupido. I suggest, since the internet is ever-changing and expanding, that you Google Cupido and/or Uranian astrology and explore what is out there to discover. A good resource is:


Planetary pictures are formed when one planet or point is centered between two or more planets or points.

In Jackson Pollock’s Dial chart, you can see that when the pointer (axis arrow) is on Cupido, it is midway between the Sun and the North Node. This is called a Planetary Picture. 

Jackson Pollock's Natal chart Dial
Jackson Pollock’s Natal Chart Dial

Cupido is the midpoint for other configurations, too. Although I would go into more detail if I were doing a full analysis of Pollock’s chart, but just taking into account his Cupido influence, I can see:

North Node/ Sun = Intense and destined involvement in the arts.

Venus/Vulcanus = Born with great artistic talent. Great artist.

MC/Vulcanus = Great influence through women and/or community.

Venus/Chiron = Expression of his art came from a deep, emotional wounding.

Pluto/Chiron = A sense of destiny from an early age.

Ascendant/Vulcanus = Individuality

Sun/North Node = Trouble adapting to norms and with change. Suffered painful separations. Attracted to toxic associations.

The beauty of Uranian astrology is that, for example, Venus = Chiron + Cupido wouldn’t necessarily mean the same thing for everyone. We have to look at the chart as a whole and decide the “flavor” of the person’s life. Pollock’s leads to creativity and art, among other things indicated by the many planetary combinations.

If we move the dial to point at the Sun, we see that it is midway between Cupido and Saturn, we see his antisocial behavior. He does better alone. He is physically or emotionally separated from his family, especially his father.

Cupido Saturn – Sun Midpoint

His sun is also midway between Mercury and Mars, but we are focusing on Cupido, so I’ll only touch on this. Pollock’s father is described as a “man’s man,” independent, and hardworking, quarrelsome and prone to snap judgement and decisions.

NOTE: When describing people in a chart, we can only see how the native experiences them, not how they actually are/were. Pollock’s father might have been exactly as the chart describes or he may have been different but that’s how Jackson experienced him.

Combining traditional Tropical astrology and Uranian astrology gives us a deeper and richer story at many levels. Take a look at Cupido in a traditional chart and in the moveable dial. Then pick your chin up off the floor as you are wowed!

I’m so excited to be studying Uranian astrology and look forward to the time when I am as proficient and fluid in using the Dial as I am with traditional systems.

TIP: Check out a really amazing YouTube channel that I found enormously informative:

Keep the stars in your eyes,


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