I'm a Swedish astrologer, author and historian of ideas, researching the thought patterns in mythology. My personal website: stenudd.com
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Barack Obama Presidential Horoscope
Complete Presidential Chart
(November 6, 2008) In my first reading of Barack Obama's horoscope, I wrongly predicted that he would lose the 2008 presidential election. So, here I reexamine his horoscope in an effort to find how it should be rightly interpreted, and what it has to say about his future as the 44th US president.
Past Events: ChildhoodBarack Obama's father left the family when he was only two years old, and divorced his mother in 1964. They met just once after that, before his father's death in an accident in 1982. It was the mother who raised him, marrying another man soon after the divorce, and moving to Indonesia in 1967. When he was ten years old, in 1971, he moved to his maternal grandparents in Hawaii. His mother arrived the following year, but went back to Indonesia in 1977.
Some of this should show in the horoscope. For example, the soon distanced father, who is represented by the sun in the horoscope. It is at 12° Leo in Obama's horoscope, in the later part of his 6th House. A Leo father to son relation is one of mutual independence and integrity, especially in the mid-section of that sign. The 6th House suggests some complications, but not necessarily a split of any kind. The 9th House would be more like it, suggesting a distanced father, or the 12th House, implying troubled relations between them. On the other hand, several Houses would indicate a closer relation than the 6th House does - such as the 4th, the 3rd, or the 7th.
Barack Obama's sun has only one aspect, a square to Neptune in Scorpio and his 9th House. That could be interpreted as complications in his relation to his father, due to distance and estrangement.
On the other hand, astrology allows also for a stepfather to be represented by the sun. In primary astrological progression, the sun is 5.5° away from the cusp of the 7th House, representing the same number of years - for a new fatherly partnership when Barack was that age. That would be a year or so after the stepfather's entry into the family, but right about the time they moved to Indonesia, distancing Barack from his real father. So, in the mind and heart of Barack Obama, his stepfather might very well have replaced his real father at about that time.
I found no heavy transit aspects to the sun in that period, which suggests that the "change" of fathers was not traumatic or dramatic at all to Barack Obama. Transit Neptune was still in a square aspect to the sun, just as when he was born. In the 9th House this would indeed suggest moving far away from the father, though maybe more in spirit than necessarily in body.
The moon has several aspects, stressing its importance and therefore also his mother's importance in Barack Obama's life. The trine to Jupiter in his 12th House shows that she gave him the emotional means to cope with misfortune. The sextile to Mercury in Leo and the 6th House indicates that she also inspired his ability to work hard and ingeniously. But the square to Pluto in Virgo and the 7th House suggests that her example makes it very hard for him to come to terms with drastic changes in his partnerships. He feels betrayed, and is also burdened by speculations about his own fault, when relations are troubled or broken.
Already in his childhood, Barack Obama moved twice - from Hawaii to Indonesia in 1967, and then back again in 1971. That should also show up in his horoscope. Unfortunately I don't know the dates of these travels, but the moon in his 4th House and Gemini implies a home on the move, without too deep roots. And interestingly, in 1971 transit Saturn moves over his native moon, introducing great responsibilities and certain hardship, which should be obvious in his home. Therefore, his move back to he USA definitely made a greater impression on him, than when he left a few years earlier. Saturn makes sense, both in the gravity of having to leave his mother, and in getting into much older people's care.
SchoolsAfter his highschool graduation in 1979, Barack Obama studied in Los Angeles and New York, getting his B.A. in 1983, with political science as his major. After a couple of years working in New York, he moved to Chicago and worked for three years (1985-1988) in a community organization.
Late in 1988, Barack Obama entered Harvard Law School. He graduated in 1991 as a Juris Doctor, and returned to Chicago, writing a book and working in an organization to stimulate voter registration. From 1992 to 2004 he taught law at the University of Chicago Law School. He also joined a law firm specializing on civil rights, and engaged in other social and political work.
Barack Obama has both of the planets closely connected to the intellect, Mercury and Uranus, in the same Zodiac sign: Leo. This shows integrity and taking pride in knowledge, even wanting to shine with intellectual brilliance.
Mercury in Leo makes him speak in an elaborate way, pompous at times. This planet is in his 6th House, showing that this talent is clearly expressed in his work. The opposition to Jupiter in the 12th House shows that his words can sometimes lead to misfortune for him. Barack Obama often needs to speak himself out of trouble, and that is something he learned already in childhood. Mercury roles the age of approximately 7-14, so already in this period he was good with words, and put them to work.
Uranus is the planet of insight and higher education. Wisdom, if you will. It's in Barack Obama's 7th House, which means that it is mainly with his partner that he excels intellectually, and gets stimulated to profound thought. It's still in Leo, so he might be the one doing the most talking in their relation, but still his partner makes him grow intellectually and helps him sharpen his arguments.
The positions of Mercury and Uranus don't necessarily point out law as his major, which would be Libra. But the Leo characteristics agree well with law. Even more so with political science. The sun is in the same sign, confirming that the principles of rulership are of great interest to Barack Obama.
In late 1981, transit Uranus passed over his MC, which is a strong indicator of Barack Obama realizing very much about himself, and what he wanted to do with his life. MC moves very fast through the Zodiac, so the dating is only trustworthy if the given birth time 7:24 PM is. This would be the time when he decided about his education, and got ideas about where it would bring him. Probably, this was the time when his mind got the idea of venturing into politics.
When Barack Obama entered Harvard in 1988, transit Saturn was in trine with his native Uranus. Also, transit Uranus had recently passed that spot. This was in his 11th House, indicating public life, and duties assumed there. Clearly, he started Harvard Law School with the intent of using the education in a political career.
Private LifeBarack Obama met Michelle, his wife to be, in June 1989. They became engaged in 1991, and were married on October 3, 1992. Their daughters were born in 1998 and 2001. In 2005 they moved to their present house in Chicago.
There's no strong indicator in the transits of June 1989, so he was hardly at that time aware of getting to know his future wife. Nor is his wedding day clearly marked. Their strong commitment to one another happened somewhere between those dates, maybe when transit Jupiter passed over his Uranus in August 1991. Could that be when they were engaged? This conjunction would have made it obvious to Barack Obama how much he gained from their partnership, on all levels, how much it enriched his life.
I don't have the birth dates of his daughters, so it's difficult to say much about their roles in his horoscope. But Barack Obama does have the moon in his 4th House and Venus in his 5th, so he should be a concerned and appreciated father. In 2001, the year his younger daughter was born, transit Saturn passed over his moon in the 4th House. That brought duties to his home, in a way that the first daughter had not done. Of course, those duties need not have been connected to the daughter, but to something else in his home and family.
Barack Obama plays basketball since highschool - which is no surprise considering his physique. Sports talent is often indicated by Mars, which is in Virgo. That doesn't make him very competitive, but probably a sore loser. And whatever game he plays, he will insist on everybody following the rules.
His favorite pastime activity, though, is shown by his 5th House, where Venus is in Cancer. That means he prefers to spend his spare time in loving company, caring for his closest ones, and making sure they are happy. This is probably also his sincere drive to do community work. Venus in Cancer is much about helping people.
Barack Obama was a smoker until some time before he announced his candidacy. That would be Gemini related, where he has his moon. So, maybe smoking was in some way an expression for his longing for his mother... The square to Pluto in his 7th House suggests that his wife made him quit the habit (if he has succeeded with that). In December 2006, transit Jupiter made an opposition to his moon, which could be when he stopped smoking. At that time, also Mars and Mercury approached the same opposition, increasing his power to break free of the habit - they were in Sagittarius, the sign of freedom.
Religious beliefs in the horoscope are indicated by Neptune and the 12th House. But religion can have several reasons, therefore also many different indicators in the horoscope. Another likely planet is Uranus, and a House to be considered is the 8th.
Unfortunately, I don't know when in 1988 Barack Obama was baptized, which was a decisive moment in his religious life. The year before, transit Pluto passed over his native Neptune in the 9th House, causing a number of great changes in his life - especially in his mind, and his way of experiencing himself. That change may well have culminated in his baptism. Also, transit Neptune moved to a sextile with his native Neptune in 1988, which is even more of an indicator of the baptism, since transit Neptune was in his 11th House, that of public display and activity. It was also in Capricorn, the sign of concrete manifestation.
Otherwise, Barack Obama's 8th House indicates that he's not much of a mystic. He has quite a matter-of-factly view on the afterlife and such, insisting on a logical standpoint.
PoliticsOn November 5, 1996, Barack Obama was elected to the Illinois Senate. That's a remarkable date in his horoscope: transit Neptune was in conjunction with his native Saturn, and transit Uranus with his native Jupiter, both aspects almost exact, and in the 12th House. Each of the conjunctions is a once-in-a-lifetime thing, at best - and happening at the same time is extraordinary.
It's unlikely that Barack Obama will experience an equally unique astrological event again in his lifetime. So, that victory had greater significance to his life than even the presidential election. It's not such a mystery, since this was his first election to a public office. That is bound to make a most lasting impression, and therefore be heavily marked in the horoscope.
Oddly, it's in the 12th House, which is that of sacrifice. The explanation is simple: To Barack Obama, this is a sacrifice. Genuine idealism. He offers himself, for the benefit of a greater good. That's how we want our politicians, but it's rarely how we find them.
Neptune over his Saturn shows that a vision of where it may lead (surely already the presidency) helps him cope with the responsibility, and Uranus over Jupiter shows that insight and wisdom create success.
There's also a sextile between transit Saturn in the 2nd House and Barack Obama's Jupiter, showing that at first it seems to be costly to him, but later proves to give him lasting funds - or he spends money on the campaign, later to be repaid through the salary of his office. Saturn is also in square to his native Venus in the 5th House, which means that his spare time suffers from this engagement. No doubt.
At the date Barack Obama was sworn in as Illinois Senator, January 8, 1997, Jupiter passed over his Saturn. That's a clear sign of increased power and responsibility.
So, when Barack Obama was elected Illinois Senator, this was his great step into politics and public office. Surely, he had his eyes set on the presidency already at that moment, and started to move impatiently in that direction.
Already in the year 2000, Barack Obama tried for the US congress, but was eliminated in the primaries on Mars 21. At that time he had no strong support by transits to his horoscope. But transit Uranus had recently passed over his ascendant, indicating that he understood much better how to present himself. So, this election was a way of exercising his new image, and he was probably quite aware that it would not be enough to win - that time.
His participation in the election, just a few years after getting a seat in the Illinois Senate, also clearly indicates his hurry upward. Uranus passing his ascendant told him that he had what it takes to attract voters and win elections.
Barack Obama's first significant appearance on the national political arena was at the 2004 Democratic convention, where he held a keynote speech on July 27 that made a lasting impression. This charismatic ability of his, he achieved at the transit Uranus conjunction with his ascendant, mentioned above. This was the first big test of it, and the outcome was definitely impressive.
I would have thought to find significant transit aspects to his horoscope on this date, but there is really none. Of course, it's a speech, and to a very friendly audience at that. Still, one would think that it was of great importance to Barack Obama's political career. According to the horoscope, it was not. Maybe he was already famous among democrats for his rhetoric ability, so that this was just what was expected. Then, his real big debut at the national arena was elsewhere - perhaps with one of his books, or his appearance on the Oprah show.
On November 2, 2004, Barack Obama succeeded in getting elected to the US Senate. At that date, the transits to his horoscope gave no particular indication of his success. Actually, all but two of them are problematic: oppositions and squares. I would probably have predicted that he lost, and that it hurt him. But what it does suggest is that in reality, the election was settled before the day of the actual voting. He probably knew long before November 2 that he would win.
One of the positive aspects is transit Mercury passing over his Midheaven (MC), which means that he expanded his contacts, getting himself known in a wider and more elevated circle.
Among the problematic aspects there is transit Neptune in the 12th House opposing his sun. Transit Neptune is important in his political career, as described above. The personal drawbacks it gave his sun was something Barack Obama already knew and expected, since he continued to regard public office as a kind of personal sacrifice for a higher good. Transit Uranus in his 1st House making a square to the moon in his 4th reveals much the same.
A cluster of Pluto, Venus and Mercury in his 11th House form asquare to Mars in his 8th. It means that powerful events in his public life cause problems with his relatives, and even seem to cause a threat to his person. Transit Mars in square to his Pluto says just about the same, but in relation to his partner. So does the transit Uranus square to his moon, regarding his home and family. What all these aspects point out is no doubt his moving to Washington, DC.
The single most important aspect is the opposition between transit and native Saturn. Both are in retrograde, which tends to make Saturn increasingly frustrating and malicious. Transit Saturn is in Barack Obama's 6th House, showing that new and heavy duties at his work seem to contradict what he regards as his important sacrifice by accepting political office. He must have been struck by immoralities and inefficiencies in Washington politics.
It may even have tempted him to give politics up, doubting that anything good can come out of Washington.
On the good side, transit Jupiter entering the 9th House, showing that he changes his life and environment, is in trine with his ascendant. This indicates that Barack Obama quickly got well known and respected, making an impression from the moment he appeared in Washington.
It's astrologically interesting that Jupiter is in Libra, which is the sign of decision and legal process - showing that he moved because of such an event, in this case an election.
On February 10, 2007, Barack Obama announced his candidacy for president. This date is not that heavily marked in his horoscope, which makes sense, since he certainly made the decision earlier, and his horoscope shows primarily what's important to him. He probably decided when Neptune passed over his ascendant, which happened at the end of December 2006. That was a defining moment for him - he realized how far his ability to impress and attract people could take him.
On June 3, 2008, Barack Obama had achieved enough primary votes to win the Democratic candidacy, and Hillary Clinton stopped her campaign and endorsed him on June 7. Again, those dates are not significant in his horoscope, for the simple reason that this was gradually more and more apparent, during the preceding months.
The most interesting aspect at that time is transit Uranus in opposition to his Mars in the 8th House. He found resources and insights of importance to him, freeing him of dependence on events he had no control of.
On August 28, at the Democratic convention, Barack Obama accepted his party's nomination. This was little more than a formality, since his candidacy was already won by primary elections. So, his horoscope is almost devoid of any transit aspects.
The Present: the Election
Honestly speaking, I still don't see them. Sure, in every poll Barack Obama was early on indicated to win the election - but nobody trusted the polls that much, for a number of reasons. For this the most important election of his life, neither would Obama. He would not believe in his victory until the results came in, or at least not until a few days before that.
But the only transits aspects worth mentioning are none of them strong or significative enough to point out his victory. They just aren't, so this historical event seems to pass by almost unnoticed in Barack Obama's life, which can't be the case.
The transit moon formed a conjunction with his Saturn early on the day of the election, and in the evening with Jupiter. That encircles both the planets instrumental in the emergence of Barack Obama's political career, described above. But it's just the moon. It forms the same aspects every month, and it means little more than that he feels good about his sacrifice.
Transit Mars forms a sextile with his native Mars in the 8th House, indicating an advancement in his social position, helped by matters out of his control. This aspect is far from as frequent as those with the moon, but still it happens every year and a half.
Transit Mercury forms a square with Jupiter, showing that Barack Obama adapts to a change that is slightly unfortunate, and the transit sun forms the same aspect to his native sun, showing changes that affect his working situation. But these are annual aspects of minor importance.
That's it. Not much of a horoscope for this unprecedented presidential election.
Some more powerful aspects precede or follow after this date: Neptune's earlier passing over Barack Obama's ascendant has been discussed above, Jupiter is on the way toward Saturn and Jupiter in his 12th House, and Saturn is moving toward Mars in his 8th House. But those aspects are too far away on November 4 to explain the victory.
So, this remains a mystery. Some would call it a strong argument against astrology, but I would wait with that. When we've followed Barack Obama's life a little bit longer, the lack of astrological marks on this day may be explained.
The InaugurationThe Inauguration is on January 20, 2009. This date is vastly more interesting, according to Barack Obama's horoscope. Maybe Obama just can't believe that he got the job, before he actually takes over the presidency?
On Inauguration Day, a cluster of the sun, Mercury and Jupiter is gathered at Barack Obama's native Jupiter in the 12th House. It shows great activity regarding his sacrifice, lots of things springing into action, demanding and getting a lot of his capacity, which is increasing at that time, to meet the demands.
Transit Jupiter is in a trine to his moon in the 4th House, indicating that his family life actually benefits from this. Moving to the White House seems to do his family good, and no doubt it's one spectacular home.
The transit moon is right over Barack Obama's Midheaven (MC), which is not a rare event, but it shows his delight in the event, and the shine it brings to his official role.
Transit Pluto is in opposition to his native Venus, which is a once-in-a-lifetime thing. Pluto in the 11th House shows that a major and vastly important change in his public life robs him out of almost all spare time. So, Barack Obama will not allow himself the frequent and extended vacations that Bush indulged in. He will miss the many pleasant things in life, and he will not be able to care for people in his surroundings as much as he has before, but he willingly takes on his public role nonetheless. Pluto in Capricorn shows that this role is concrete and impressive.
Transit Saturn passes over his Mars in the 8th House, showing that Barack Obama gets some serious duties regarding relatives or matters out of human control. This aspect indicates the gravity of the functions he accepts, and also that the powers connected to the office are so vast that they are not possible to control in every detail - but he will try, and he succeeds more with this than others would have thought possible.
Transit Mars in on the cusp to the 12th House, which is the major House in regards to Barack Obama's political career, as has been seen in the above.
The significance of the 12th House is also what got me way off, in my previous prediction of Barack Obama's chances to become president. I could not see that the 12th House would point to victory in the election, since this House usually signals loss and shortcomings. But in Obama's case it has been the House of his political commitment, as can be seen above.
Although being elected president of the USA is regarded as ultimate success by the whole world, to Barack Obama as a person its costs are tremendous. He knows it, and he's willing to pay the price - but to him personally, it involves more of a sacrifice than any personal gain. He will not even get a salary that compares to what's demanded of him. Not to mention the complete loss of a private life.
Previous presidents have mostly been driven by aspects to the 11th or 10th House - those of public fame and social career. I made the mistake of taking that for granted. But this guy actually does if for ideal reasons, sort of like a patriot going to war. He knows it will hurt him, but that won't stop him.
Not only is this election historical because of the new president's skin color, but also because of his conscience.
Transit Uranus and Venus are by the cusp of the 2nd House, showing that although Barack Obama has little control of his own means in this situation, he will find ways, mostly because of his creative thinking and adaptivity. He will get resources that seem to come out of thin air.
ConclusionI found the excuse for my previous mistaken prediction about Barack Obama's election to president. Astrologically, I was misled by the fact that his horoscope for the day of the election gave no clues, and by not knowing that his political career is based on events in his 12th House, which is very rare in such cases.
Now, I think I understand his horoscope better, so I should move on to see what's I store for him in the future. Some other day.
For now, I settle with hesitantly pointing out that basing his presidency in the 12th House, also being inaugurated with Saturn at his Mars, is kind of a risky thing. Barack Obama is vulnerable to sudden interferences and turns of events, directed right at him. Already in February 2009 there are some such challenges to his well-being, when transit Mars and Jupiter in the 12th House oppose his sun.
Barack Obama is not heading for an easy life. But he knows that.
Addition on November 7, 2008:
The Electorate Vote
On December 15, transit Jupiter forms a very precise conjunction with Barack Obama's Saturn in the 12th House and Capricorn. Since Jupiter is the big agent of success, especially in things of multitude - like voting - this is a strong indicator of his victory in this election as well.
There is also a conjunction between transit Saturn and his Mars in the 8th House and Virgo. This indicates duties and power that increase his ability to deal with things that are normally beyond any person's means. It also forcefully puts such responsibilities on him. It suggests the increased authority Barack Obama will receive as president, and also point out that he will use it quite forcefully - and that this is expected of him.
Both the above conjunctions are in earth signs, which stand for concrete matters and action that leads to solid results.
On December 15, there's also a cluster of planets in Barack Obama's 11th House, that of his public life: Mars, the sun, Pluto, and Mercury. So, already before he enters the presidential office, he is the center of public attention, intensely exposed in the media, sort of as if the campaign continued. That's no surprise.
The CongressAnother day is the date of the official presentation of the electorate vote to the congress, which is January 6, 2009. That day, transit Jupiter is conjunct with Barack Obama's Jupiter in the 12th House - again a strong indicator of his success, especially in matters of multitude, like a vote.
Transit Saturn has commenced a retrograde (seemingly backward) movement away from Mars in his 8th House, which indicates that his power decreases. Since this is the date when the elect Congress is in place and starting to act, the retrograde movement suggests that this Congress, although with a majority of Democrats, is not willing to surrender much of its power to the new president. Probably, the Democrats will be eager to use their majority, and have no intention to just wait for Barack Obama's initiatives.
On January 6, transit Pluto is back in opposition to Barack Obama's Venus in the 5th House, showing that he will not have much time for himself. Since this is Venus obstructed, a lot of the joy of his life is diminished, which is something that takes its toll on a person at length. And with Pluto as the opposing planet, this is definitely at length.
Barack Obama gets power, which is shown by Pluto being in his 11th House, but he won't have that much fun.
A sextile between transit Mars and Barack Obama's Neptune in the 9th House shows that he is in the process of moving in to the White House, and this change of life will be swift and positive.
Mars also has a trine with his Pluto in the 7th House, indicating that his intensified public role stimulates changes in his partnership. His wife is likely to enjoy her new role, and this puts a new spark in their marriage - one of activity more than love, though.
Retrograde and the 12th HouseI have to repeat what I have hinted before: Barack Obama's political career is mainly based on his Saturn and Jupiter in the 12th House, which is normally one of sacrifice and elusive longings. Also, both those planets are in retrograde, which makes them weakened and slightly complicated.
So, although Barack Obama won the presidency with a clear majority, his position as president will not be as strong and solid as now seems the case. The Democratic majority in the Congress and Senate will be almost as difficult for him to master, as if they were Republicans.
Also, the fact that he has to take over when the USA is in its weakest financial state since who knows when, will make his job quite difficult. Barack Obama's popularity might not falter, but his political initiative will meet with many obstacles. And he will most definitely be used as a scapegoat by just about everybody else with political power.
And Mars in his 8th House is reason for concern. There are definitely threats to his person that should be taken seriously. And in crucial moments, Barack Obama can't always trust that he has the support needed.
But he knew all along that it wasn't going to be easy.