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Planets Combust

by Rebecca Brents


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Planets Combust

A planet forming a conjunction that is too close to The Sun is in a condition astrologers call "combust." This makes an interesting little side trip for us to explore here because not many texts will even mention, let alone deal with a combust state, and you will find conflicting opinions about just what this means and when it occurs. Some astrologers consider a planet to be combust if it is within 10° of The Sun. Some astrologers consider a combust planet to be heavily weakened, even crippled in its ability to perform properly in a Natal chart.

The theory behind this phenomenon holds that the Sun "scorches" the planet that has come too close to its emanating energy, thereby damaging its ability to function and harming its sovereignty to exercise control and rulership over the houses it theoretically governs in a personal chart and the issues that the corrupted planet naturally represents. Some older texts refer to this position as "being under the Sun's rays" or "under the sunbeams."

Again, my observation and experience with this phenomenon differs somewhat from the conventional wisdom that proposes the planet and all its concerns are injured or crippled by being in this position.

I allow an orb of only about 2 to consider a planet combust and my experience suggests that when in this condition, the concerns of that planet become so "merged" with ego energy (which is what The Sun represents) that boundaries melt and the planet, while still able to exercise authority over its concerns and the houses it rules in a chart, has an "inflated ego" attached to it whenever and wherever it operates.

Thus, when Mercury, for example, is combust the Sun, which happens several times a year, one's opinions, knowledge, and information become so "ego driven" other points of view don't even get noticed, let alone a fair hearing. (When the whole world is in this position because of the transiting placements of the planets in the sky in real present-day time, this presents all kinds of obvious problems in everyday life!)

When Venus is combust the Sun, people become more likely to treat partners as if they were part of some single conglomerate entity rather than having separateness, autonomy, different agendas, and different requirements.

In other words, you (and everyone) will view "you and your partners" as being "a unit" and will treat one another as if there is no question but that you are of one accord with the same drives, the same goals, the same outlooks, the same values, which, of course are your ego values and any hint of deviation from this can cause quite a scene!!! "Deviation," however, is likely, since your partners will feel the same way about you and the role they assume you should be filling and the support you should be offering in their lives.

The possibility for problems is obvious.


Celestial Navigation is
Rebecca's Astrology Blog.


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Last updated November 29th, 2019

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