The free monads

Italian version

The quincunx aspect originates at an angle of 150° on the zodiacal circle. This measurement is unique because it does not form a regular polygon when compared to all the other aspects that are multiples of the semi-sextile. Instead, it creates a star polygon with 12 vertices, also known as a dodecagram.

Although considered a minor aspect, the quincunx has gained popularity among astrologers. In his book Christian Astrology, William Lilly states: “We seldom use more aspects than Conjunction, Sextile, Square, Trine, Opposition. To these of late one Kepler, a learned man, hath added some new ones, as follow, viz: Semisextill, Quintil, Tridecile, Biquintill and Quincunx [1]“; Lilly did not provide any interpretive examples, leaving it to the students to derive their meaning based on their knowledge. Using a minor aspect requires careful interpretation, especially with the adoption of John Addey‘s harmonic theory. But one thing, in our view, is the organic employment of an interpretive system, which in itself represents a well-structured entity in which the parts complement each other; another is the indiscriminate addition of aspects that refer to different and non-integrable methodologies to make up for presumed gaps in the decoding of astrological symbolisms. Harmonics, on the other hand, with its advanced numerical resonances, is a plausible system when used within its own rules.

While often overlooked, like the semi-sextile, the quincunx fills an essential gap in interpreting the series of zodiac aspects that result from dividing the zodiac into twelve segments. When viewed in sequence, these aspects reveal significant meanings: integration (conjunction), challenges and opportunities (semi-sextile), mediation (sextile), crisis (square), harmony (trine), and relationship with the Other (opposition). However, what can be said about the remaining angular relationship of 150°, between the easy flow of trine energies and the recognition of opposing forces with which we often struggle? The answer lies in a no man’s land, where the planetary dynamics have yet to learn how to interact, closing themselves off like a monad without contact with the outside world. The planets are isolated and compartmentalised, which is why the quincunx is also known as the Inconjunct – almost like a non-aspect. However, in a symbolic totality characterised by an organic, relational structure, this isolation carries the same weight as sharing. It is the missing element that, through its seclusion, offers us the other side of the coin, the contrast that gives meaning to opposing significations. This concept is also symbolically expressed in the relationship between different modalities of the zodiac signs involved, such as Fire-Cardinal Aries and Earth-Mutable Virgo, or Water-Mutable Pisces and Fire-Fixed Leo.

From an interpretive standpoint, this factor gives rise to a divergence in the planets’ dynamics, causing them to separate their respective areas of influence. This factor becomes evident in an individual’s destiny as a conscious or unconscious decision to steer clear of integrating distinct existential experiences. As a result, there is discomfort when attempting to align specific interests, or external circumstances force this separation. A perfect example of this is the Moon-Venus quincunx in a female horoscope, where the role of motherhood is not reconciled with emotional and relational life. Similarly, a Mars-Saturn quincunx may lead to an inability to carry out and consolidate actions effectively. A Venus-Mars quincunx in a male horoscope may cause the separation of romantic and sexual aspects of a relationship, leading to the possibility of a double life.

When using interpersonal astrology, the challenge lies in reconciling and integrating inherently divisive dynamics. The process of “collecting what is scattered”, to use a term dear to René Guénon, requires significant energy and may lead to physical and mental imbalances if not appropriately managed. However, it’s essential to recognise that our interpretation of events is what creates divisive elements. If the quincunx is the revelation of aspects of our psyche that operate, so to speak, asynchronously, the reason lies in the necessity of this aspect. Take, for example, the planetary relationships mentioned earlier. A Moon-Venus quincunx in a female horoscope can be viewed as an opportunity to collaborate between the roles of mother and partner, allowing each to manifest with autonomy and reinforcing the idea of family.

Similarly, a Mars-Saturn quincunx can be approached by using one’s energies without feeling pressure to achieve social success, leading to greater freedom. Finally, a Venus-Mars quincunx in a male horoscope may allow for non-monogamous relationships as a means of avoiding perceived betrayal. These examples demonstrate how the quincunx can symbolise freedom and experimentation, allowing for the manifestation of pure psychic energies free from internal and external constraints.

[1] William Lilly – Christian Astrology – London 1659, p. 31.