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"The object of life is not to be on the side of the majority but to escape
finding oneself in the ranks of the insane." --- Marcus Aurelius

Dale O’Brien’s Astrology’s 





“… and so castles made of sand, fall in the sea, eventually.”


The mystique of California has beckoned throughout U.S. American history. Even before the California gold rush of 1849, “Manifest Destiny” offered ordinary white male Americans the perceived “lateral mobility” movement west that Nancy Isenberg described in WHITE TRASH (The 400-Year Untold History of Class in America). On 2/2/1848 Spain lost “Alta California” to the U.S. Glittering opportunity came quickly when gold was discovered in this new U.S. territory that same year. The rush to California really took off in the following year. The Compromise of 1850 brought statehood for California. (The astrology: 9/9/1850, San Jose, CA at 0:00:01 a.m. LMT)
            Flash-forward to the draw of booming port city San Francisco, barely slowed by the 1906 earthquake and the more destructive subsequent fires. By 1910 racist  (Birth of a Nation) D.W. Griffith made In Old California, the first movie made in Hollywood, soon to become a worldwide legendary place where dreams can supposedly come true, as in film and TV. In 1911, the 1846 California Republic flag became the California state flag. Note that they left the red star commemorating the slavery republic of Texas; they left the word republic; they left the grizzly bear, walking west. The last California grizzly bear was shot in 1924, just 13 years later. If a flag represents a state, then what is Cali? A republic that isn’t, a state that doesn’t see itself as such, a people commemorating a red star state they aren’t, flying their murdered mascot. The red star would son represent Russia’s communist red army, yet the red star flies atop California to this day. Go figure.

After WW I, the early to mid 1920s saw an oil and real estate boom in LA and So Cal. By 1925 there were more autos per capita in LA than in any other U.S. city. The hubraic exploitation of limited water resources began then. (See Marc Reisner’s 1986 important book, CADILLAC DESERT (The American West and Its Disappearing Water, or video snippets of the rarely seen but excellent public television series based on the book). Besides the actual financial opportunities, film and popular music created tremendous promotion of the California mystique. 1921’s “I Love You California” (a Frankenstein co-creation) became the state song thirty years later.

California’s last lonely grizzly will be killed by a Californian within just three years.

Unofficially Al Jolson’s 1922’s catchy tune “California, Here I Come” was and is even now far more popularly known than the official state song. It was co-written by one California-born songwriter and one born and based on the east coast. (This is the same missing California songwriter mix as 40-some years later, as can be seen below). Jolson’s famous blackface performances of jazz and blues celebrated where some white Americans came from (“my dear ol’ Mammie”), but California was the place to go. Jed Clampett and his soon-to-be Beverly Hillbillies fictional family headed that way later.
The 1930s Dust Bowl brought about 2.5 million west to California, with many turned away at the border. (Cue Woody Guthrie’s “Do Re Mi” or any good subsequent rendition.)
            Flash-forward again to mid-WW II and the U.S. Naval Air Weapon Station was established, not seaside, not riverside, not even creek-side, but at China Lake, not even a wet lake. China Lake (see below) is a dry lake formerly known as “the little Chinese Borax Works” where Chinese labors did the hot desert work before some 20-mule team hauled it away.


            For those of us alive now (or relatively alive), the mystique of California came with the mid 1960s: surfers, surfer girls in bikinis (named after a U.S.-destroyed and permanently contaminated former paradise), hippies, peace & love, drugs, sex and rock’n’roll. (Far lesser known, it was also the time and place to incubate and perpetuate “modern” majority keyword astrology, dismissive of most of the mythology of the Gods with mostly the same names as astrology’s planets.)
       The song title that best summed up this 1960s California mystique was the Mamas’ and the Papas’ “California Dreamin’” written by California-born “Mama” Michelle Gilliam and then husband South Carolina-born “Papa” John Phillips.At the time, they were living out a dreary late autumn in Greenwich Village.


    California’s huge geographic area, huge population, huge national and international cultural influence and huge economy merits our huge attention. We non-Californians are likely to be ultimately as impacted by California’s challenges as are Californians themselves. California’s agricultural output alone, or its decline, likely impacts the rest of the U.S., and to a lesser extent those outside the U.S. Hence it should be helpful to examine California astrologically.
    Note that California’s Sun in Virgo, and California’s sense of “home” and real estate are in the “mutable” (= moveable) Earth sign. Think sand.  The archetypal California place to be is beachfront or desert sand, like Palm Desert. Note that the 1906 San Francisco earthquake damage was worst on land created by filling in wet shore areas with soil moved there, Virgo style.
    California’s Vesta and Jupiter are also in Virgo. Ritualistic Vesta says all is well; all will be well for California when the land is kept in an orderly condition. Jupiter here denotes wealth through real estate, with attention to detail such as “gingerbread” trim to San Francisco townhouses, and elsewhere manicured lawns and/or pristine white gravel (mutable Virgo Earth). In California’s natal chart Neptune posed no serious threat to this Virgo order. “Sand castles” would seemingly safely last and perpetuate. In its first few years, then since Spring 1862 and pretty much true until Spring 2019, Neptune was not a threat. However, now and in the immediate future it is unfortunately quite a different story.

There are images called Sabian Symbols for each degree of the Zodiac. In California’s chart, Sun and the low point of the chart share the same image:

“A volcanic eruption bringing dust clouds, flowing lava, Earth rumblings”

      Symbols are symbolic, but with “the Sabians” there are sometimes literal correspondences. Although California isn’t known for volcanic activity, Sun and foundation point of their chart having this image certainly should never take for granted the stability of the Earth beneath its man-made structures. California’s widespread seismic instability was never much of a problem to those indigenous to what is now California: no skyscrapers, no freeways, no gas supply lines, and no nukes, so no big deal.
Famously within astrological circles (pun intended), transiting Uranus and Pluto were conjunct on this degree in 1965 just a month before “California Dreamin’” was recorded, and again in 1966 as the song got around. Both wandering planets opposed the transiting duo of Saturn and (at the time unknown) Chiron, with a harmonious aspect from both sides to Neptune in a place in the chart associated with creativity, leisure time, entertainment, youth and play.
      So, California was suddenly “new”, exciting, experimental, changing technologically, challenging authority, creating instability and innovation. Surfers’ prewar ‘34 “woody” wagons, for instance, became post war long board transports. Transistor radios brought technology to the beach and accentuating the generation gap between those born either before or after the uranium bombing of Hiroshima and the plutonium bombing of Nagasaki.
      Purportedly adapted to peacetime use, nuclear Uranium and Plutonium and the exploitation of Earth’s hidden resources robbed California. Every natural piece of land was vulnerable to “modernization” breaking old rules and creating new man-made “realities” before legislation to legislate them might even be created. Nuclear innovation was rapid, but toxic aftermath is long lasting. At least six California nuclear sites were created, most during the Uranus and Pluto conjunction in Virgo time period. Even offline, their toxicity adds lethal danger to this time period, particularly through 2025.
      Electronic circuit boards were called motherboards and “birthed” a new future for America. Silicone = Virgo’s sand is electrified and otherwise messed with, and California’s Silicone Valley has a brand new way of “poundin’ sand.” The hundred pound weakling who had sand kicked in his face by the buff muscleman will become the CEO who will have the former muscle man kicked to the curb, and then to the homeless camp across from some high tech “campus.” That’s progress. White Californians did not know that the indigenous ones had an older, wiser way to live. Sadly, most were dead, soul sick and/or victims of prejudice and disdain.

      Just two years after California Dreamin’ invitation, Jimi Hendrix sang “… castles made of sand, fall into the sea, eventually” Mercury and Neptune in a Water sign made a harmonious aspect to Chiron in Watery Pisces, who opposed Uranus, Pluto and Pallas Athena in Virgo. Shamanic, prophetic Hendrix also sang, “You’ll never hear surf music again” once you are “experienced.” He even sang about Atlantis love songs and about “Valleys of Neptune” rising (posthumously released). He seemed to appreciate the sound of the surf to the sound of clean-cut guys in matching shirts, not a hair out of place.
      Trouble in Paradise: In January and February 1969 Santa Barbara’s virgin Virgo beaches were uglified by an oil spill.  Transiting (yet unknown) Chiron in Pisces opposed California’s Jupiter in Virgo. White American environmental awareness, such as it is began from that tragedy, inspiring the first annual Earth Day, and others since then barely noticed by most Americans.


 “Out in California… they killed all the Indians and they shot all the grizzly bears”
                                                                        --- Dave Alvin, OUT IN CALIFORNIA

      Circling back to Uranus and Pluto coming together in ’65 and ’66, the same duo were conjoined in Aries in 1850: Uranus the Thief with war-technology and Pluto the Undertaker harmonizing with “God’s country” Jupiter.  Translation: great land grab by killing off their opponents = opposing Moon and Juno in Libra, with Venus in Scorpio. This same configuration fits the first well-known Hollywood film, The Squaw Man, wherein a Native woman saves a White man, then commits suicide for his sake.

Back to the Future: California’s Time of Reckoning (I reckon)

      Another very important book for Californians by the late Marc Reisner is: A DANGEROUS PLACE (California’s Unsettling Fate). Posthumously released in 2003, it is “an informed look at the West Coast’s inevitable rendezvous with catastrophe” with a predominant focus on California’s history of earthquakes and seismic vulnerabilities.
     Two significant earthquakes occurred July 4th and 5th 2019 (brief days after the July 2nd Solar Eclipse). Highly paid talking heads (not to be confused with the great band) at all the corporate news sources described the location as in the desert near the small town of Ridgecrest, California (population: about 27,000 plus). What they did not reveal is that the epicenter was on the property of the adjacent China Lake federal Naval Air Weapons Station (7.995 employees) literally just across the street from Ridgecrest. (Thanks for the tip, Pearl!) Just beyond China Lake’s 20,000 square miles on the other side from Ridgecrest is Death Valley. To the Uranian mindset, this indeed seems like an appropriate place to trash using modern deadly weapons. That’s progress. Californian Aquarian Ronald Reagan as General Electric’s spokesman said, “Progress is our most important product.” China Lake is a produce department of the modern sort, a Deathmart (one of many, worldwide).

Progress?: From Petroglyphs to Petrodollars

The majority of mainstream astrologers, particularly originating from California, wallow in a thoughtless toxic mainstream of praise for astrological Uranus, revolutionary change, with newer always the better. That’s progress, astrologically speaking. As an archetype, Faustian Uranus/Prometheus destroys all that was old and Natural. Oddly though, China Lake is the site of thousands of ancient petroglyphs. The base’s high security has inadvertently protected the petroglyphs from theft and vandalism (at least the ones that were not destroyed by bombing, lasers and such). We’ve come from the timeless spiritual art of petroglyphs to the technologically generated mass-produced print copying of petrodollars to pay for death and destruction. That’s progress. That’s Uranus.
  All “nonessential) China Lake personnel there were sent away indefinitely, as months of multiple aftershocks are expected, albeit with probable diminishing intensity with passing time to those aftershocks. It was not specified whether those who maintained the base’s golf course and swimming pools in that triple digit heat desert are or are not “essential personnel.”
With Mercury slowing to retrograde (starting 7/7), the speculations have only begun as I write this on 7/6. Was it an attack from China or Russia? Was it a botched nuclear weapon experiment? Was it “the good guys” in the military destroying underground testing facilities to save us from a New World Order? Was it extraterrestrials?  Who knows? What I do know is California’s astrology. The validity of any of the above is not necessary for Californians to be concerned about the state’s wellbeing.

Tsunami-like, Neptune Looms Above California’s Virgo Sands

     In Greco-Roman mythology, Poseidon/Neptune was known as “The Earth Shaker.” CALIFORNIA FACING GREATEST THREATS OF EARTHQUAKES, TSUNAMI, FLOODING since its earliest years. Then it was from about 1855 through early 1862. Even the earliest California settlers were used to multiple minor earthquakes. However, the earthquake of 7/11/1855 in what is now the LA area was described as “the most vigorous and terrifying” in that area in that era, including “giant sea waves” (tsunamis?) About six months later it was time for the San Francisco peninsula to get, uh-huh, all shook up. A tremendous 8.25 magnitude rocked Fort Tejon January 9, 1857.
     Coinciding with The Great Flood of 1862, transiting Neptune was opposite to California’s Jupiter. Statewide nightmarish devastation, long-standing new inland lakes and of course much prolonged disruption of routines. The governor arrived for his inauguration via rowboat on the canal like streets of state capital, Sacramento.

Native Americans in the region expected this, but not the greedy white guys who stole their land. The same transits are coming for California in a few years.
Neptune’s transits then fit now and at least the next couple of years. The big difference now, of course, is dramatically larger populations, vast high and wide infrastructure, dangerous toxic dangers of various sorts, etc. Further, Neptune continuing to transit all the way through Pisces through as late at 2025, continue to oppose every California Virgo placement.  “Messy” doesn’t begin to describe it. For instance, add Pisces’ water to Virgo’s moveable dirt = mud = mudslides.

“If the fires don’t get ya, then the mudslides will.” --- from the 2009 song “California’s Burnin’” by Dave Alvin, 4th generation Californian (cd: Dave Alvin & The Guilty Women) Note that Dave has written lots of songs about California, from gold rush era “King of California” to “California Snow” about a tragic border crossing; lots more, including a medley mixing songs of 1930s with 1960s attempted movements to Cali.


       Neptune is no bad guy, no pissed off punitive Yahweh. Poseidon (the ancient Greek predecessor to Neptune) name meant “husband of Earth.” It seems to me that He has two wives: Amphitrite, His Queen, the Goddess of the Sea as well as His wife, the Earth. Go To the seashore. Watch the waves rush to the shore, crashing or gently kissing the shore. Neptune has come to His Wife, Earth. Then, with equal urgency, the waves return to whence they came. Neptune returns to His Beloved Amphitrite. Neptune is Earth Shaker. “Was it good for you? Did the Earth Shake?” Do earthquakes happen when as Stevie Ray Vaughan sang, “You mess with her, and you’ll see a man get mean.”  Absurd? When fracking (gang-banging raping of Gaia, the Earth) goes on, earthquakes follow. (I’m not much on prediction, but as soon as I as saw video of fracking, I knew what would follow.)
       Belief in God(s) and or Goddess(es) isn’t necessary for the apparent correspondences to be relevant. Science can explain it all, but the astrological and mythological correspondence still works. Agnosticism is an intellectually healthy option.
       When earthquakes come, when a tsunami comes, don’t take it personally, but be sure to get out of the way if you can. Note that birds, animals and non-modernized indigenous people know when earthquakes are coming and save themselves. This happened on an indigenous-only small island as recently as the Boxing Day 2004 tsunami. Speaking of animals, think about the dog or cat that knows it is time to jump off the bed when the humans start their lovemaking.  When Neptune comes for his Beloved, get out of Their way!
       Some say that “Mother Earth” will shake us off like fleas. Maybe that is so, maybe not.  Maybe instead we live on Mother Earth and if human mess too much with Her, Neptune will take action. So, heads up, Californians: it is time to wake up from that beautiful 60s California dream, with beautiful sea, beautiful beach, beautiful weather and beautiful young bodies. Those surfer girls are octogenarians now, or gone with the tides of time. Enjoy every day while you can, but remember there are powers greater even than the most powerful person or people. Or not. You decide and see what happens.

In Parting, a Second Opinion (not astrological)

The Quake to Make Los Angeles a Radioactive Dead Zone
By Harvey Wasserman, Reader Supported News
06 July 19

And a Third Opinion (not astrological)

The California Coast Is Disappearing Under The Rising Sea. Our Choices Are Grim.”
“… the ocean always wins.” (Neptune will ‘win”)


Try Loving Anyway,
Dale (O’Brien)






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