Solar Eclipse – May 2012

Posted on May 20, 2012
Posted by Jim Sher

Every six months we have a series of Solar and Lunar eclipses which often create some significant shifts for people especially when it affects their natal chart directly. This Solar eclipse though is different this year for those who live in the United States. This is the first Annular Solar eclipse seen here in the last 18 years. An annular eclipse is the kind in which there is what’s called a “ring of fire” as the Moon does not completely obscure the Sun, which is what it does during a Total Solar eclipse. It can be a beautiful site to see for those lucky enough to be in its tiny path. Here’s a pretty good introduction to the nature of this annular eclipse.

Let me give you some of the facts. The eclipse occurs at 0°Gemini 21′ at 4:47pm PDT. Those who will be affected mort are people who have planets or their Ascendant and Mid-Heaven near 0° of all mutable signs (Gemini, Virgo, Sagittarius, and Pisces) and 15° of cardinal signs (Aries, Cancer, Libra and Capricorn). For those beginning astrologers out there, I recommend keeping your orbs tight, no more than 3° and sometimes even less.

The Meaning of a Solar Eclipse

My expression for this type of eclipse is that it is an “inertia changer.” In other words, it can create a very significant movement that results in a change of direction that usually has been building for some time. Historically, astrologers often regard eclipses as negative events only. But, I have not found this to be true. Personally, I have observed that each eclipse has its own character. I will get to that next. But, also, where the eclipse is found in your chart will make a huge difference as well. In fact, one of the most significant eclipses in the last 10 years occurred when the Solar eclipse opposed my natal Jupiter (ruling education) and I started the Sher Astrological Institute.

The timing of events around the solar eclipse can be a bit odd to our linear minds. Astrologers often suggest that the main events triggered by such an eclipse are within 3 days before or after the actual moment of that eclipse. This again is not what I have seen. There is an expression that I have used with other astrologers – “Eclipses begin before the eclipse.” And, sometimes, the main event, so to speak, also occurs before the eclipse itself. We don’t know why this seems true, but here are two theories. The first is that while it seems that there is a cause and effect relationship between the heavenly bodies and what happens here on earth, it isn’t how it appears to be. Carl Jung advocated for the view that there is a synchronous relationship rather than a cause/effect one. This view describes a universe that is just impossible for our linear minds to understand. Another view is that the flow of time is a very complicated thing that has a variety of peaks and valleys where the event itself is not as significant as we think. This thought is attractive to me because I have seen that the key to understanding life is by not focusing on the events themselves, but instead by looking at the specific effects, both external and internal, that are created by that event. The truth is that we know very little if we only know what the event is. How we react to an event, for example, cannot be known if you just know what happened. For example, if we know that someone’s mother passed away, we know nothing about the reactions people will have because we don’t know anything about the conditions of the person who passed or those near to them. Astrology reveals more about effects than it does about the event itself. This is the little known secret of astrology, in my view.

So, if you’re being affected by this eclipse, look at the whole scenario. See it as broadly as possible and be willing to be patient in passing judgment on what it is bringing about.

Solar Eclipses Are Not the Same


Not only does each eclipse have its own chart, but each is also a part of a specific Saros cycle series. This solar eclipse is also called 14 South in the Bernadette Brady system. And, this particular one is quite positive. Here is part of what she suggests: “This series tends to bring success, which occurs due to hard work from which the success emerges.” To me this suggests that if a person has been toiling away for some time, that there is a good chance of a well-deserved breakthrough and success. Also, because Mercury is part of the pattern, an idea we have been trying to get accepted, may finally reap rewards. This is a good time for pushing ideas we feel are valuable or important. I have seen some of these things occur already for a few people I know who are affected by this eclipse.

In the eclipse chart itself, the New Moon is squaring Neptune. This aspect can makes us more sensitive and compassionate, especially to those less fortunate and also allow our imaginations to run wild. This is great if you are using it for artistic, poetic, graphic, etc. purposes. It’s not so great if we try to apply it to the practical side of our daily life. This is when Neptune can cause us to lose our perspective, deceive ourselves or others or just be confused and disillusioned. Neptune’s archetype is most interesting, because it is both difficult to work with and so beneficial when we can let it take us to the heights.

May the next few days bring wonderful insights and progress.

Thanks for your support.



Astrology New Moon Solar Eclipse
Jim Sher

Jim brings over 35 years of experience as a therapist and transformational counselor to his practice of astrology, metaphysics, meditation and philosophy. He operates as a teacher and counselor and specializes in the use of discourse as a part of his teaching approach.

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2 responses to “Solar Eclipse – May 2012”

  1.' Candy says:

    I have the Solar eclipse conjunct natal Mercury at 0 Gemini, in my 11th house. I’m finding habitual thought patterns are easy to break up at the moment, and opening to the new paradigm effortlessly. New groups of people emerging, a big shift happening.

  2.' Alex says:

    Destruction and Transformation are the same thing.

    Surrender to Creation.

    Choose Light or Darkness

    but CHOOSE with Awareness, not Reactivity.

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