Astrology and History–The Black Death As A Game Changer

Dance with Death(Astrology Explored) Uranus/Pluto Conjunction–Breaking the Vessel, part 2–The study of history can quickly become the study of wealth distribution. We commonly think that the ownership of land denotes wealth. However, land, in and of itself does not generate wealth, what is done with the land does. Who does what with the land becomes the question. The only way to generate wealth from the land is to get someone to work it at a rate of return which is less than the value of the goods produced. This is the basis of all capitalism. For people to work at a rate that is less than the value of the goods produced there has to be something that evens the balance, that makes doing such work “a good deal” for the worker. This might be military protection from invaders, protection from the vagaries of climate by public works (such as irrigation systems), or transportation systems (roads) regular access to spiritual centers and so on. These “perks” of living in an organized community are the basis of the social contracts between the wealth holders and the workers. History shows us that eventually all social contracts become too expensive to maintain. The government controlled by the wealth holders inevitably fails. During the period of the inception of the social contract and its failure there are various attempts from the wealth holders to support the contract by controlling the workers. This is generally done tightening the reins to limit the workers ability to change their own circumstances. At some point the workers realize that “the good deal” isn’t so good anymore and they opt out of the contract. In ancient Rome, for instance, when the empire could no longer protect their cities from the sacks of the “barbarians”, the workers depopulated the cities to find their fortunes on the estates of large and wealthy land owners. This was the start of the period we know of as feudalism.

In the feudal period, workers gradually became slaves to the land. Wealth holders tightened their grip by demanding ever-increasing rents, keeping the worker’s focus on just surviving. Where the Roman ancestors of these workers might have enjoyed some education and mobility in the choice of profession, the options for survival of the population during the feudal period were restricted. The only hope for these workers was the promise of a “reward in heaven” for living a virtuous life, a life of obedience to the dictates of the church and the laws of the wealth holders. This social contract of “Spiritual Protection” was to change in the aftermath the period we know of as the Plague Years.

Uranus and Pluto made their conjunction in 1343 and 1344.

Research published in 2002 suggests that it began in the spring of 1346 in the stepped region, where a plague reservoir stretches from the north-western shore of the Caspian Sea into southern Russia. . .The epidemic began with an attack that Mongols launched on the Italian merchant’s last trading station in the region, Caffa in the Crimea[13]. In the autumn of 1346, plague broke out among the besiegers and from them penetrated into the town. When spring arrived, the Italian merchants fled on their ships, unknowingly carrying the Black Death. Carried by the fleas on rats, the plague initially spread to humans near the Black Sea and then outwards to the rest of Europe as a result of people fleeing from one area to another.

Uranus and Pluto conjoined in the sign of Aries, the sign of warfare and exploration. Pluto is know as the planet of pestilence and plagues (1). While we do not know the exact date this deadly pathogen was generated, we know the result of its Plutonian influence. The plague started in the wake of exploration of trade routes and ignited by the warfare of the Mongols.

At least a third of the population of Europe died from the Black Death.

During the Middle Ages it was essential that people were given the last rites and had the chance to confess their sins before they died. The spread of the deadly plague in England was swift and the death rate was almost 50% in isolated populations such as monasteries. There were not enough clergy to offer the last rites or give support and help to the victims. The situation was so bad that Pope Clement VI was forced to grant remission of sins to all who died of the Black Death. Victims were allowed to confess their sins to one another, or “even to a woman”. The church could offer no reason for the deadly disease and beliefs were sorely tested. This had such a devastating effect that people started to question religion and such doubts ultimately led to the English reformation.

Thus the social contract of “Religious Protection” was broken. The extreme suffering of the workers could not be mitigated by the clergy either by religious rites or direct aid.

But the depopulation of Europe had economic consequences as well:

European economy and society changed drastically following the Black Death. Because so many people had died, there was a huge labor shortage. This contributed to the end of the feudal system, since serfs could often leave their manors and make a better living in cities. In addition to better work opportunities, survivors of the plague had a surplus of material goods. Many of the dead had left behind entire estates and other belongings. These goods were available through inheritance and looting. At this time, the pawnshop business, made famous by the Medici family, became extremely successful. Through these factors, Europe experienced an overall rise in its standard of living.

Next: (On Saturday) Uranus-Pluto Conjunction–Breaking the Vessel Part 3-Redeeming Heaven, how A Bible changed the world
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1. The Rulership Book, Rex E. Bills published 1971 by the AFA

Image published under a Creative Commons License by user swanksalot as described on Flickr.

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If you would like a single question answered on these pages, please send your birth date, birth place and birth time to starrynightastro@aol.com. Sorry, time limitations prevent answers to anything else than a specific question.


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About Beth Turnage

I write about astrology alot. Some people like to read it.
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