'Destiny' by John WilliamWaterhouse(1849-1917)
Although mostastrology software programs include theoption of the Vertex in the natal chart, few astrologers actually useit, so there isn’t much written about it. I was a student ofCharles Jayne, who along with L. Edward Johndro pioneered its use, sohere is what I learned about it from him and subsequently from my ownpractice.
The Vertex is theintersection of the prime vertical(the local perpendicular East-West plane) with the ecliptic in theWest. Look straight up, then look West, and there it is, either aboveor below the horizon (7th house cusp) usually within a house or two.
Howto calculate it
Virgo woman horoscope today. If youdon’t have a computer that does it for youand have a table of houses, you look up the IC as if it were the MC andthen go to the Asc for the co-latitude (90-birth latitude) of birth.That’s the Vertex.
Whenit got noticed
The Vertex is considered a “second Ascendant,” while the Anti-Vertex is considered a “second Descendant.” As such, Vertex connections in synastry signify a highly personal connection. When Vertex and Anti- Vertex aspects show up in synastry or composite, the two people are irresistibly attracted to one another. A Vertex is a controversial topic among astrologers generally considered a point of karmic or fated connection. Some astrologers don’t bother interpreting the Vertex, while others swear by its.
Astrologers neverused this point for interpretationuntil electrical engineer and astrologer L. Edward Johndro andastrologer Charles Jayne began to do so in the 1940s. Johndro called itthe “Electric Ascendant” as he believed thephysical basisof astrology to be electromagnetic and so divided up its majorcomponents into electrical and magnetic natures, complementary to eachother as they are in a wire conducting a current, in which the electriccharge moves along a wire and creates a magnetic field at right anglesto it. He believed the ordinary Ascendant on the horizon plane to bethe Earth's magnetic component spatially, and the prime vertical atrightangles to it to be the electric component, hence the title. Afterlooking at it in various horoscopes, he and Jayne proposed a meaningfor it which is important, unique, and rather vague all at the sametime.
Jayne taught thatit was a point of fate or destiny(older astrologers threw those words around a lot), at which thingshappened that determined the path of your life. They could be large andobvious or small and seemingly insignificant at the time, but you wouldlook back later and say everything changed at that point, inretrospect. How that actually seems to happen depends on whether it isa transit or progression to a natal chart, the comparison ofonenatal to another, or in a relocation. In a transit or progression, youcan expect an event that will be life-changing, of the nature of thetransiting or progressed planet involved, for good or ill. And,conveniently (or rather inconveniently), you may miss it entirely atthe time, but it will begin to become clear as time passes. Hint: keepyour eyes open to blossoming developments in the rear view mirror. Ihaven’tseen a lot of concrete effects here, but other astrologersclaim they have.
Comparisons areanother matter, and here the Vertexseems to play a major role. People with a planet on your Vertex,particularly the Sun, tend to have inordinate effect upon you,regardless of who they are. Quite often you’ll find thatcontactin marriage charts and in repeated love affairs, the result of whichcan be you find yourself recurringly involved with the same risingsign, because that sign’s Vertex tends to fall on your Sun orother important planet. The contact can be with a spouse, an importantteacher, or some other major mentor and obviously life-changing contact– or it can be with someone whom you hardly know but who doessomething that critically alters your life, like the stranger on thecurb who sticks his arm out to block your path as you are about to stepin front of an oncoming car. In synastry, it’s a factor todefinitely include, as it’s usually important. If someone hasaplanet or angle on your Vertex, be particularly aware, as it may bestickier and have a longer-lasting effect on you than you mightsurmise. As in other crossovers, that may warn you against a number ofproblematic birth years which have the outer planets posited on yourVertex. People born then could be conduits for trouble, simply becauseof their age. Conversely, theday the Sun is on your Vertex in any year produces people who can helpyou immensely, even without meaning to, and in ways neither of you mayimmediately recognize. Of course, you probably won't see it clearlyuntil it's already happened, which is what gives the 'fate','destiny', and 'karma' flavor to the point, since you don't have thecontrol andfree will you'd like to, and are by definition blindsided. Along withnodal contacts, Vertex contacts give you a particularly strong feelingof being connected to a larger cosmic familythat crosses theages, connected by planetary degrees.
Perhaps equallyimportant is its role as the third anglein locational astrology. A location is considered strong if you haveone natal planet rising and another on the MC (sometimes called anastrodyne), so if you add another on the Vertex, it makes that spoteven moreimportant. When you’re there, you get a triple whammy eachdaywhen that set of three degrees hits all three angles. It would beuseful tohave it on AstroCartography maps, but no program includes it to date.The best you can do is look for crossing lines and then cast a chartfor that spot to see if the Vertex is included as well.
In general, theVertex falls in with the lunar nodes ashaving the feeling of fated destiny, contact with other worlds andother lives where there’s more going on than meets the eyeandit’s critically important, to boot. Why it should be so isanybody’s guess, but then, why not? The prime vertical is notleft out in astrology in other ways – the now-popular Kochhousesystem is based on time measured along the prime vertical, so why notuse the Vertex? Actually, more curiously, why is not the Anti-Vertexequally used, the intersection of the prime vertical and the eclipticin the East, near the normal Ascendant? Actually, in my experience,it’s the axis itself that is important, not just one or theother, though the Vertex shows up more dramatically in partnerships,being the 7th house cusp in a complete set of houses projected upon theprime vertical.
So, go put theVertex into all of your charts, if youhaven’t already, and see if Destiny awaits you and your Fateisto have been missing it all these years…
Moreinformation on the Vertex and L. Edward Johndro:
Links and discussionthreads
Article by L. Blake Finley
The Vertex: The ThirdAngle byDonna W. Henson
Understanding TheAstrological Vertexby Sasha Fenton
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In my previous article I described the Vertex axis as a ‘doorway’ that gives access to other realities. The doorway of the Vertex axis can open to many different worlds. It can describe that which delights, that which gives a touch of magic to life as well as that which can bring terror and horror. The Vertex axis tends to intensify anything with which it has contact.
For an example of the more difficult manifestation of this doorway let us look at the chart of little Jenny who was horrifically beaten most of her life and murdered by her teenage mother when she was 2 years and three months old. She was born on January 15th 1983 2.15 pm MST in Las Cruces NM.*
(click chart to enlarge)
Jenny had her Vertex in Scorpio, indicating very intense life experiences. It was conjunct Saturn, the ruler of her 8th house as well as co-ruler of her 10th house of one parent. The Vertex was also conjunct its ruler Pluto and this made up a midpoint structure of Saturn = Pluto/Vertex. One can deduce from this combination that Jenny’s life experiences might not be very easy and could perhaps be very unpleasant.
On the date of her death Solar Arc Saturn was conjunct natal Vertex and transiting Pluto was conjunct natal Saturn, both activating these most difficult energies. It is also interesting that the natal antiVertex was conjunct the Alcabitus, Placidus and Porphyry house systems’ Part of Death and this was triggered by Solar Arc Saturn, ruler of the 8th house.
The Function of the Vertex axis
Just as the 4th and 10th houses and their rulers often describe the parents and the 7th house and its ruler the partner, the Vertex axis and its rulers tend to describe the doorways to the next level of our evolution and the means by which this can happen. The contacts it offers are frequently intensely personal and activate deep levels within us that we may not have been aware of previously. They can touch your soul.
For example: when his Vertex axis was being activated a curious business man went to a meeting where people were practising a hands- on method of levitation, but this man was unable to levitate- he just couldn’t ‘lift off’. A wise person observed that his heart energy wasn’t working at all and rubbed that area of his body, the man then levitated up to the ceiling. He said he had never felt love until then, he had no idea such a feeling existed.
Planets in close contact with the Vertex axis will often describe people, life forms, ideas and objects that have a profound effect on you or are instrumental in opening new doorways of perception for you. I mention life forms because people have described angels, ghosts, spirits, animals, trees, mountains and many other life forms as part of their extraordinary Vertex axis experiences. From listening to these peoples’ stories I have come to the conclusion that the Vertex axis can bring intensely shamanic experiences at times.
To illustrate the possibilities of a planet in close aspect to the Vertex lets observe the chart of respected astrologer Noel Tyl who was kind enough to publish this article in his Analytical Techniques section in April 2009.
He has his Vertex in Scorpio which will give very intense experiences in life, in the 5th house it would suggest these experiences are with love, children, sport and creativity.
As Noel rediscovered the quindecile aspect and has powerfuly presented its validity to the astrological community, I was fascinated to find that he had a quindecile aspect between his Vertex (destiny) and Uranus (astrology). The quindecile to Uranus would give particular emphasis on Uranian types of people in these fields who are friends (Uranus in the 11th house) and skilled in higher mind pursuits (Uranus ruler of 9th house). These people would enthral and fascinate Noel, particularly if they also have Uranus strongly placed in their natal chart. They would open new doorways, new realisations and new possibilities for Noel.
For further emphasis Noel’s Uranus is quintile Venus, the ruler of the anti-Vertex. The quintile aspect would give a creative thrust involving these associations.
For even further emphasis there is a septile pattern involving Venus-Neptune-Pluto, making a midpoint structure of Venus = Neptune/Pluto. Contact between both ends of the Vertex axis and/or their rulers usually strengthen the power of this ‘angle’. Neptune is ruler of the MC, bringing this configuration into career focus.
Activation of the Vertex axis.
This can be a bit of a puzzle to research because many of the experiences given by the Vertex axis are very private and can be so unusual people hesitate to speak of them.
As his biography has given clear information, to illustrate an unusual activation I will use the chart of Uri Geller (20th December 1946, 2.00 am, Tel Aviv, Palestine). Since the publication of this article on Noel Tyl’s site people have contacted me to say Uri has been exposed as a fake. As my own personal experiences convince me he isn’t I will still use his chart.
Uri has his Vertex in Gemini, indicating a destiny involving communication and perhaps an involvement with matters connected to the air element. His Vertex is in the 8th house suggesting access to very deep areas. The North Node is conjunct the Vertex, indicating that he would have powerful and destined contacts with groups of people. Uranus is conjunct the Vertex, indicating that he has access to unusual energies, particularly electrical energies as the Vertex axis is probably the electrical axis of the body and Uranus rules electricity. This makes up a midpoint structure of Vertex = Uranus/Node.
At age four he had a mysterious encounter with a sphere of light that was eye-witnessed by a retired Israeli Air Force Officer. At that age his Solar Arc North Node was conjunct natal Vertex and his Solar Arc Vertex was conjunct natal Uranus, activating the potential shown in his natal chart. I don’t have the date for this event but would expect the Vertex axis would have also been triggered by transits and/or lunations at that time. Further development of his skills would be shown by subsequent activations of his Vertex axis, but these are not published in his biography.
Relationships and the Vertex Axis
As has been shown by the above examples, the Vertex axis is not specifically oriented to romantic relationships. It covers all kinds of experiences that can involve life forms of various kinds. The one consistent factor is that these all open the mind or soul to encompass quite profound fields in the human dynamic, whether it its spiritual, emotional, mental or physical depends upon the condition of the Vertex axis and the planets with which it is in touch.
However, I and many other astrologers have noticed that profound experiences involving relationships can and do happen when the Vertex axis is triggered. Passion, love and hate are emotions that reach the core of a human soul. The rules of society rarely mean anything at all when these emotions are alive and people have radically changed their lives for better or worse during these times.
Powerful and destined experiences in relationships are particularly likely if you have your natal Vertex axis in the 5th-11th (love) or 7th-1st (partnerships) or in Leo-Aquarius or Libra-Aries. The Vertex in the 8th house or Scorpio-Taurus gives incredibly intense and deeply felt experiences.
You will find people are particularly magnetic for you if they have their Vertex axis straddling your Ascendant-Descendant or your 5th-11th cusp.
Combined charts will often tell a clear and powerful story as well, particularly Davison charts.
The intense experiences the Vertex axis can bring into your life can be just for a moment or last for a lifetime, but because these experiences have touched your soul, you never forget the person and circumstances involved.
Copyright (c) Alice Portman 2009
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