Mayhem in Wisconsin, a Teaching Article

by Marilyn J. Muir, LPMAFA

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The U.S. has recently had a rash of tragic shootings involving large numbers of people in very unusual circumstances. The July, 2012 theatre shooting in Aurora, Colorado was followed by several thwarted but somewhat copycat situations in multiple states, followed by the Sikh Temple shooting in Oak Creek, Wisconsin. So much trauma, a lot of death, a boatload of hurt for the victims and their loved ones and for a nation reeling under the impact of insane cruelty and wanton destruction.

Previously I did a full astrological workup on the Aurora shooting, followed by a workup on shooter James Holmes. The Sikh Temple shooting was one more terrible happening in a series of terrible happenings. How many of these workups are necessary to understand such carnage? I do the workups because we as astrologers can learn from them. I really felt that the lesson itself was made clear with the Colorado material until I realized the Wisconsin killings were different, part of an internal pattern within the state itself. Research headlines blared that the Sikh Temple event was the fifth spree massacre in Wisconsin within seven years. What? That is not usual. Think of what this unusual situation could mean in terms of astrological research and understanding. That made this pattern unique, worthy of study and here is that workup.

The State of Wisconsin was born on May 29, 1848 and had progressed 156 days to the first event using the day for a year measure to a time frame that would support five such massacres within seven years. It is just not normal for a state’s citizens to run amok in such a relatively brief period. Because state incorporation charts are traditionally set as noonmark charts at the state capital, progressions would also use the same coordinates: noonmark at the state capital.

Event charts on the other hand are set for the location of the event, preferably with the time known. If actual time is not known, noonmark would be my chart of choice. Why? Because it represents the middle of the existing day, averaging out the actual planetary positions. The only questionable planetary position would be the Moon, which travels one degree each two hours on the clock. The Midheaven will be very close to the Sun in most instances in noonmark charts, so I would not fully trust the Midheaven and Ascendant for the those particular event charts.

This would be a multiple comparison of charts, the natal statehood chart with five progressions plus five event charts using actual location and actual time if known and noonmark if time were not known.  That represents eleven charts – such a multi-wheel is just not possible by hand or by computer. The spreadsheet is the only way to go, but limited to the ten bodies, the Ascendant and Midheaven if plausible, and the north lunar node. Tight aspects are preferred, although aspects between multiple charts tend to stretch orbs. Aspects were calculated by dividing the cardinal, fixed and mutable hard aspects into three 10˚ spans. Under this method you must watch orbs and carefully note out of sign aspects or crossovers between representative groups. The events?

  1. On November 21, 2004, eight people were killed and two wounded in a deer-hunting incident. The gunman was ejected from private land by a hunting party and turned his gun on those hunters shooting several in the back. It took place in Meteor, Wisconsin, time unknown, and therefore noonmark. The gunman is serving a life sentence without parole.
  2. On March 12, 2005 at 12:50 pm, seven people died plus the gunman committed suicide in an attack on the Living Church of God attendees in Brookfield, Wisconsin, an event chart. 
  3. On June 9, 2007, five people died, plus the gunman committed suicide, at a domestic disturbance at Delevan, Wisconsin, time unknown although it appeared to me to be the middle of the night; traditional noonmark was used.
  4. On October 7, 2007, six people died, plus the gunman committed suicide, at another domestic disturbance at Crandon, Wisconsin, time unknown, noonmark used.
  5. The tragic Sikh Temple shooting took place on August 5, 2012 at 10:20 am in Oak Creek, Wisconsin. Six people died, two were wounded and the gunman suicided, but was shot by police as well.

That would list four suicides and one life sentence. There were two religious attacks, two domestic attacks, and I am not sure how to classify the deadly deer-hunting incident.

What in the Wisconsin statehood chart would indicate such violence? What in the progressing Wisconsin statehood charts would indicate such a multiple of violent events in such a brief period? How do the event charts tie to the statehood natal and progressions?  I cast a tri-wheel chart for a timed event looking for the trigger. What does a trigger look like? Our traditional tri-wheel method is to place the natal inside with the progressions in the center wheel and the transits in the outer wheel. Whenever possible, I cast an actual timed event as the transit chart because it gives me a trustworthy Midheaven and Ascendant. I prefer to put the transits as the base or inside wheel and cusps, any natal in the middle wheel and the matching progressions outside. One or more aspect patterns will rise to the surface as activated, and that is the key to the event. In the case of multiple charts, the question would be: is that highlighted aspect pattern key to all the events? Yes, they (multiple) were, and we have points to begin with on our spreadsheet.

There is a wide mutable T-square in the state natal chart between Mercury in Gemini, Saturn in Pisces and the N Node in Virgo (Saturn in Pisces) ranging from 20 to 28 degrees. The noonmark progressions in this instance do not provide connections to the natal. Because we do not have an actual timed chart, it is not known if actual progressions might provide connections. All the event charts not only connect to that natal T-square but some of the events turn that T-square into a grand cross:

  1. Event #1 adds Mercury and Pluto in Sagittarius: grand cross.
  2. Event #2 adds the Sun in Pisces and Pluto in Sagittarius: grand cross.
  3. Event #3 adds Pluto alone in Sagittarius: grand cross.
  4. Event #4 adds  Pluto alone in Sagittarius: grand cross.
  5. Event #5 adds Moon in Pisces and Venus in Gemini emphasizing the natal T-square involving the nodal axis.

The Wisconsin Sun /Midheaven / Neptune is in early mutable ranging from 2.5 Pisces to 9 Gemini. The first four progressions have new, temporary (continually moving) positions that trigger that natal square, four of five event charts have positions that trigger that natal square, again some events producing temporary T-squares and some producing temporary grand crosses. Temporary progressing positions can trigger events for a particular time period and can also be triggered by the transits in event charts.

For the Wisconsin noonmark Ascendant, all the progressions and four of the five event charts are connected in the 10 to 20˚ mutable range with 21 combinations, most as T-squares but two again become grand crosses. Remember that we are unable to know three event Midheavens and three event Ascendants so activations could increase within those charts. We have covered all the mutable degrees, what about cardinal and fixed?

The Wisconsin natal Jupiter is at 20 Cancer with all five progressed charts showing Uranus square at 19.5 Aries. This 20˚ position bridges two ten-degree spans and the ties between the two groupings are enormous, with only two positions at 10˚ and almost all the other 34 positions clustered in the early 20˚ of cardinal. Again the square and the T-squares are triggered repeatedly as T-squares or grand crosses.

Late fixed 20 to 30 has two dozen interconnected positions involving the natal statehood chart, all five progressed charts and four of five event charts producing multiple T-squares and grand crosses. That is massive triggering by hard aspect and a mountain of information can be mined from those aspects and interactions, far too many for this short article.

What about the rest of the fixed degrees? There are several 0 to 10˚ and 10 to 20˚ fixed positions but none of them connect to the natal statehood chart. There are another two dozen connections between the progressed and the event charts. All by itself that should offer proof that transits activate progressed positions.

Interestingly, the early degrees of cardinal do not involve either the natal statehood or the progressed statehood charts. Those degrees occur only between the current event charts. I found that quite interesting. Why could that happen and what does it mean? When you look at a chart from 1848 and its progressions for 155 years to the first current event, they represent another time and era. The transiting events are from a time far removed from the base they trigger. One of the major arguments in America’s politics at the moment is ownership of guns. The guns available to the founding fathers, the guns available to the citizens of 1848 and the guns available to us in modern times are vastly different. Can the transits possibly show the difference in the time frames? Perhaps the current cardinal transits in question represent a new facet that relates to now and not specifically to the past.

The guns cited in our Bill of Rights were, for example, single-loading flintlocks not rapid-fire assault weapons and hand grenades which were unknown to our founding (Declaration of Independence) or our framing (Constitution and Bill of Rights) fathers. Armor-piercing bullets did not exist at the time of the birth of the country or the birth of the state. Our founders lived in a hostile territory, in a war (Civil) framework, and were quite vulnerable; personal ownership of guns would be common. The right to bear arms in our Bill of Rights was intended to be in defense of the individual states and the nation as a whole. The 2nd Amendment to the Constitution reads: “A well-regulated militia being necessary to the security of a free state, the right of the people to keep and bear arms shall not be infringed.” Could the introduction of a separate set of aspects refer to the fact that all the events were shootings and the weapons were guns that were not even imagined at the time of the founding of our country, the statehood of Wisconsin and the 164 days following statehood, the progressions for 164 years to our five events?

The opportunity to see five violent events applying to a single state within such a short period is a great teaching tool. Hopefully, I have presented this workup in a different format than the previous examples. For you astrologers who would like to contribute to our knowledge base, look at the history of Wisconsin to see if other events might be studied to help us understand the initial intention (natal) and the development of the State (progressions). Such other events might give us clues to the current events we have studied in this article.

I was fascinated by Wisconsin’s strong ties to my preferred U.S. Declaration of Independence Virgo rising chart. If I had more time, I would research Wisconsin’s contribution to the rise of unions and the ferocious attack on them, and personal and city/town government rights in the last couple of years played out through the recall elections. There is lots of astrological work to be done there.

In closing, another area to be studied is that Wisconsin is in the middle of its Neptune return, the first one I have encountered as a specific. Negative Neptune brings confusion, subterfuge, lies and misdirection, all favored research subjects of mine. This study would be a goldmine in political astrology. Does anyone out there want to tackle this subject?

Notes after completion of my study, for your additional study:

Shooting at Azaha Salon and Spa, Brookfield Square Mall, Brookfield, WI. Oct 21, 2012. First call to police @ 11 AM, 3 killed, 4 wounded. Shooter: Radcliffe Haughton, 45 years old, found dead inside spa (suicide) and identified 4 PM. Domestic dispute with estranged wife, protection order three days before, Oct 4 tires slashed. Improvised explosive device found inside spa. Shooting took place less than a mile from Living Church of God shooting (in my study).

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This work is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution-NonCommercial-ShareAlike 4.0 International License.