a familiar scenario: You're cruising along the highway
and you're making good time. You're steering a 2,000-pound
projectile of flying metal, but you're in control. You
feel the power of self-direction and solo mastery; you're
king of the road. You are, quite literally, on an ego-trip.
you become aware that you're not really alone. Other vehicles
are inexplicably slowing down. Because you're part of
the amorphous mass of traffic, you obey the flow and ease
your foot from the pedal. The reason soon becomes apparent—a
car accident. As traffic slows to a crawl, you observe
the scene—the smashed vehicle, the emergency rescue squad,
the fire truck, the police. Your daydream of personal
power evaporates. You're suddenly "at effect"
of the situation. You're no longer the one in control—the
have just witnessed what astrologers would call a Mars-Neptune
event. Astrologically, Mars is identified with your confidence
and aggressive driving, the speeding vehicle, the uniformed
authorities, the flashing red lights and, of course, the
crash itself. Neptune is associated with your dissolved
fantasy, the semi-conscious merging of traffic, the victims
and rescuers and their eventual destination, the hospital.
Neptune and Our Love for the Automobile
and Neptune symbolize two very different but equally important
principles of human motivation. Mars is the ruler of (is
linked to) assertive Aries, and represents the separate
identity of self. Neptune, the ruler of Pisces, is the
urge to abandon or sacrifice individuality in order to
merge with others. When these two planets are connected
by a square (a stressful 90-degree angle), there can be
conflict. A square of this kind took place on July 4,
1776, the day that our country was "born." Consequently,
this square is present in the birth chart of the U.S.,
and Americans tend to experience a contradiction between
two ideals—"rugged individualism" versus "united
the birth chart for the United States, Mars is in Gemini
(a planet of travel), so America was "born"
with a highly-activated interest in transportation. The
chart also shows a square aspect between Neptune and Mars,
an indication of America's idealized (Neptune) "love
affair" with the automobile. We worship our personal
vehicles as extensions of our ego. Whenever we drive,
we assert our inalienable right to burn rapidly-depleting
resources (Neptune is linked to liquid fuels) in pursuit
of a Martian dream—energetic self-expression.
in the driver's seat is a metaphor for power, an image
that is often exploited by the Neptunian masters of deception,
the advertising industry. Immersed in a culture that is
centered around the automobile, we idolize life in the
fast lane. Safety experts advise us to “drive defensively,"
yet traffic signs give us Neptunian messages such as "yield"
and "merge." The conflict between Martian and
Neptunian urges can create frustration, road rage and
ultimately, more car accidents. America leads the world
in car crash fatalities, and a significant number are
caused by driving "under the influence" (of
1997 study by the American Automobile Association (1)
that reported a shocking increase in road rage incidents
revealed the personality profile of the typical aggressive
driver as a "relatively young male with a criminal
record, history of violence and drug or alcohol problems."
This certainly sounds like the afflicted Mars-Neptune
of the U.S. chart. (Mars is linked to violence and testosterone,
while Neptune is associated with prisons, drugs and alcohol.)
Another study (2) compared the personalities and driving
records of men who had died in car accidents, and found
that the victims were "more belligerent, more talkative
and more hyperactive than the average man." Again,
this description corresponds to the Mars-in-Gemini problems
of our national birth chart.
a 1999 study of auto accident deaths (3), astrologer Martin
Piechota found that the most common placement of the victim's
Sun was in Aries and Scorpio, the two signs ruled by aggressive
Mars. A similar conclusion was reached by an international
insurance company (4). Their research showed that drivers
born with the Sun in Aries are more likely than any other
sign to have car accidents.
Up Side of Mars-Neptune
drinking and driving, Neptune and Mars can be a dangerous
mix. But there is always a positive side to any astrological
combination, and in the case of Mars-Neptune, it is compassionate
action, or heroism. The heroic act is irrational (Neptunian);
it involves going beyond the Martian ego in order to save
others. Together, these two planets indicate the altruistic
urge to be of assistance to others and perform "good
deeds" such as emergency rescue.
aspects are often found in the charts of heroic events
as well as the birth charts of accident victims and their
rescuers. This was confirmed by a recent astrological
study (5) that analyzed recipients of the Carnegie Hero
Medal, an award given to people who risk their own lives
to save others. A significant number of the heroic acts
were found to occur on days when Mars and Neptune were
positive interaction of Neptune-Mars can produce the inspired
hero, the courageous savior and the spiritual warrior.
In life-threatening accidents, the victim and the rescuer
are bonded through the union of Mars-Neptune. They become
partners "by accident."
"Road Rage." U.S.News & World Report.
June 2, 1997, pp. 24-30.
This is a Johns Hopkins School of Medicine
study reported in "Loudmouths Die in Car
Crashes." Science Digest.
November 1974, p. 62.
This Martin Piechota study will be published
in the Fall 2000 issue of NCGR
This was a study by the Zurich Municipal
Insurance Company, reported in "Aries to
Blame for Rams on the Road." London
Daily Telegraph. March 23, 1995.
See "What Makes a Hero." Astrology:
Your Daily Horoscope. August 1999,
more information, also see www.roadrage.com.