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Autopsy of a bomb attempt

In a previous post we had a brief look into Claus Stauffenberg’s nativity and predictions for the time of the bomb attempt; let’s now study the day of the event, 20th July 1944. The bomb attempt took place inside the Wolfsschanze (Wolf’s Lair), Hitler’s military headquarters near Rastenburg, East Prussia (present day Poland).

From the astrological point of view, the day of the event is extremely interesting. The day started with a solar annular eclipse at 27º 22’ Cancer, which occurred at 7:43 AM, Berlin, local time. It falls very close to Hitler’s natal MC (1), which could be a sign of loss of power, but its effects are not strong enough to overthrow him, because it is not visible in Northern Europe.

Stauffenberg took a plane from Berlin to the Wolfsschanze, having arrived around 10 AM, to attend a military conference. In his briefcase he carried a bomb intended to kill Hitler. The device had a detonator that would take approximately ten minutes to activate the explosive. The conference started at 12:30 PM, some minutes before the Sun reached the MC; the Ascendant was 18º Libra, curiously enough, very close to Hitler’s Ascendant (2). A few minutes later Stauffenberg made an excuse to leave the conference, entered an empty room and armed the bomb. From that moment, he had ten minutes to place the bomb again inside the briefcase, re-enter the conference room, place the briefcase close to Hitler, in order to kill him, make another excuse to leave the room, and finally reach a safe distance to escape the explosion – a sequence of actions that only someone with nerves of steel could perform. In astrological terms, this ‘ten-minute window’ is exactly the time the Sun-Node conjunction takes to reach the MC. Claus Stauffenberg managed to do all this without raising suspicions, and then he waited at some distance, for he wanted to be sure that Hitler would die in the explosion.

The explosion: 20th July 1944, 12:42 PM (CEDT -2:00), Wolfsschanze (Wolf’s Lair), 54ºN04’46’’, 21ºE29’37’’, East Prussia (present-day Poland)

The bomb detonated at 12:42, right when the Sun-Node conjunction reached the MC. This configuration can easily be correlated with the concentrated power of a bomb and to its ‘public’ nature. It is quite appropriate that the conjunction occurs in a watery sign, because the bomb had a ‘liquid’ detonator (the detonating process was activated by the crushing of a copper tube and the consequent release of the acid contained within; it would take about ten minutes for the acid to corrode the metal blocking the firing pin to hit the percussion cap; once released, the pin would hit the cap and the bomb would explode).

The chart has 20° Libra rising and the ruler, Venus, is in fiery Leo, a feral sign, in the 10th house of public actions, suggesting a high profile and uncontrollable event. The Moon is also in the 10th, and applying to the conjunction of Venus which rules both the Ascendant and the 8th house of death.

The explosion destroyed the conference room and mortally wounded three officers and the stenographer; Hitler survived, having suffered only minor injuries. But outside the building, at a distance, Stauffenberg heard the explosion and assumed the Fuehrer was dead. He immediately decided to drive to Rastenburg airfield, and from there take the plane back to Berlin. During the trip to Rastenburg two major changes occurred in the astrological configurations. At 12:49 PM the Moon entered Leo; as the Moon rules the MC in the chart of the explosion it can be seen as the leader (Hitler) moving away from danger (combustion, the explosion); between them is the North Node, a benefic, which can be interpreted as a protection. Two minutes later, at 12:51 PM, the MC moved from Cancer to Leo; this also suggests a change of scene. These two occurred right after the detonation when the military managed to rescue Hitler (only slightly wounded, but considerably shaken) from the debris and move him into a more secure place – therefore we have the leader, signified by the Moon, moving away from the explosion (the Sun) and going into another room (new sign).

Stauffenberg’s aeroplane took about two hours to reach Berlin, and during that time the Ascendant changed from Libra to Scorpio (at 01:38). So now Mars rules the Ascendant and Venus rules the Descendant, which is the opposite of the chart of the explosion. This suggests a significant shift in the balance of power; it corresponds to the period when the Nazi leaders at Wolfsschanze regrouped for the counter-attack.

The plane landed in Berlin around 3 PM, and Stauffenberg immediately phoned to the Bendlerblock, the centre of the military resistance. He victoriously announced that Hitler was dead, but in turn was confronted with contradictory reports, saying that the Fuehrer had survived. By that time Mars, the ruler of the new Ascendant, is culminating, pointing to the rise of a new, aggressive power. From that moment on, the plot follows a hesitant and disruptive path, with some conspiritors implementing Operation Valkyrie in certain parts of the country, and others demanding a clear confirmation of Hitler’s death, and eventually changing sides; this lack of cohesion ultimately led to the failure of the plan.

By 7 PM the situation reached another critical point: Hitler had already recovered enough to talk on the telephone, confirming that he was alive. He ordered his troops to surround and seal off (but not to invade) the Bendlerblock, in order to regain control of the situation in Berlin. The corresponding astrological movement occurs in the MC, as it changes from Libra into Scorpio, (at 7:05 PM), thus placing Mars again in control.

Inside the Bendlerblock the situation had completely gone out of Stauffenberg’s control. He and three other conspiritors were rushed to the courtyard outside the Bendlerblock and executed by a firing squad at 00:10 AM of the 21st. The execution was hastily ordered by General Friedrich Fromm, which was intended to cover his participation in the plot (a vain effort, as he was exposed and executed a few months later).

The execution: 21st July 1944, 00:10 AM (CEDT -2:00), Berlin, Germany

At the moment of the execution, the Ascendant was at the beginning of Taurus, which is remarkable, because in the attempt chart this sign is on the 8th cusp. The situation set in motion by the bomb, is now coming to a conclusion; the possibility of death (the 8th cusp in the attempt chart) is now emerging (the Ascendant in the execution chart). In addition, all the planets that culminated by the time of the explosion are now in the 4th house, the lowest point of the chart, signifying the end of things.

The opportunity to overthrow Hitler was gone; he was to remain in power for another ten months, until his defeat by the Allied troops.

Helena Avelar

(1) Adolph Hitler’s chart was originally set for 18:30, according to the time given in his birth certificate, and it was later rectified for 17h58, by Wilhelm Wulff; in any case, the MC would vary between 04º Leo and 26º Cancer, therefore not very far from the eclipse.

(2) According to the time registered on his birth certificate, Hitler has 26º Libra Ascendant; Wulff’s rectification pointed to 20º Libra.

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Claus Stauffenberg: the man behind the hero

The Hollywood mega-production Valkyrie called the public’s attention to the failed attempt of 20th of July 1944 to assassinate Adolf Hitler, and to one of its protagonists, Count Claus Stauffenberg.

The attempt was meant to trigger Operation Valkyrie, an emergency plan approved by Hitler and intended to come into force in the event of the Fuehrer´s death or physical incapacity. This plot was the last of a series of attempts of the German Resistance to overthrow the Nazi regime. Its uncovering, and the subsequent execution of thousands of suspects, ultimately destroyed the resistance movement in Germany. (learn more)

Although Stauffenberg had no previous personal contact with Hitler, his military rank and functions granted him direct access to the Fuehrer, as well as first-hand knowledge of all his schedules and itineraries; thus he became a key element in the plot.

The birthchart

Claus Stauffenberg was born on 15 November 1907 at 1:00 AM, Jettingen, Germany (source: Astrodatabank, quotes birth certificate in Astrolog).

Claus Stauffenberg’s chart has a predominantly Melancholic temperament, which is prone to solitude and caution, rigorous, spartan in his habits, and a bit withdrawn. These traits are further stressed by the Moon-Saturn conjunction which emphasises and distempers the Melancholic temperament by adding to it a depressive tone. He also has some Choleric traits, which confer on him energetic and imposing qualities; these are also distempered by the two Choleric afflictions of the lord of the Ascendant: the combustion and the square of Mars.

The Melancholic-Choleric combination enhances the dry quality of the temperament (1), thus conferring strong will and a distinct trace of harshness, which is further intensified by the distempered conditions of Mercury (combustion and square to Mars) and the Moon (conjunct to Saturn), often turning into an oscillating behaviour, alternating between periods of solitary introversion and sudden outbursts of impatience (2).

His significator of mentality is Mars, which is in Aquarius, denoting a stubborn mind, determined to have things its own way and at its own pace, not easy to persuade and prone to arguing (due to the square to Mercury). Venus participates with Mars and because it is angular and aspects    the Ascendant, it adds a more polite and agreeable demeanour.

He had a difficult temper, but in social situations he was able to control it, enhancing his better side and deflecting the more aggressive traits of his nature to his military career. He was very determined (due to the emphasis of the Dry quality) and persistent, able to go to extremes to accomplish what he thought to be correct.

His military vocation is shown by the exact square of Mercury, the main significator of vocation, to Mars, its dispositor; note that Mercury rules both the Ascendant and the MC and Mars is in its house of joy. They are therefore strong significators of military vocation. This is further enhanced by the conjunction of Aldebaran, a star of the nature of Mars, to the MC.

In this chart there are clear indications of violent death:

– the ruler of the Ascendant, Mercury, is afflicted by the ruler of the 8th house, Mars, which is in a human sign (3), which points to death by the hands of men;

– the main significators related to death in this chart are placed in violent signs (4): Mercury is in Scorpio, Mars in Aquarius and the 8th house cusp in Aries;

– both luminaries are afflicted by the malefics: the Sun (which is also in Scorpio) has a square to Mars and the Moon is conjunct to Saturn, also suggesting active enemies and possible violence.

The chart also presents several configurations which suggest difficulties and struggle:

– the ruler of the Ascendant is combust and retrograde, and the Sun, which combusts (subdues, obliterates) Mercury, is the ruler of the 12th house, thus bringing into play some hidden or uncontrollable factors (12th house) into his life;

– Mercury squares Jupiter, the ruler of the 7th house of enemies (posited in Leo, a feral sign, in the 12th of secrets and limitations);

– the Moon-Saturn partile conjunction in Pisces, a strong significator for enemies and opposition.

The bomb attempt

Let us now see how these configurations where activated by the time of plot. We will use Primary Directions, Profections and his Solar Return of 1943, which was still active by the time of the bomb attempt, 20th July 1944.

Stauffenberg’s directed Ascendant was at 9º Libra, conjoining the antiscium of his natal Moon-Saturn conjunction in the 7th house (5). This configuration is a ‘red flag’ by itself, as it activates the potential for strong opposors signified by the natal Moon-Saturn conjunction. The Moon is also quite probably the hyleg of this chart, thus having determination over life. Additionally, he was in a planetary period (firdaria) ruled by Mars and the Moon, which due to the significations of these planets in this chart, also reinforces the possibilities of life-threatening situations.

As if these testimonies were not worrying enough, the solar revolution chart presents striking signs of danger.

In the revolution chart we find the Moon, Mars and Saturn conjunct the Ascendant – a configuration which speaks for itself. The Moon and Saturn are significators of enemies in his natal chart, and are activated by the directed Ascendant; furthermore, Saturn is the ruler of the 8th in the revolution chart. As to Mars (6), it is the natal ruler of the natal 8th house. It is therefore a clear configuration of grave and immediate danger, with the possibility of death. The Ascendant and the planets are in Gemini, which in the natal chart corresponds to the 10th house of public image, which emphasises the visibility of the event. Therefore some dangerous (Mars) enemies (Moon-Saturn in the natal 7th) which would come to him in this period (conjunct the Ascendant in the revolution).

The ruler of the Ascendant in the revolution is Mercury, the same as in the natal chart, and again it is combust, only this time in the 6th house, a weak and debilitated place. It receives a square from Jupiter, which rules the 7th house of enemies both in the natal and in the revolution charts. He was in a weak position before his enemies and too debilitated to overcome them – as we can see clearly in the revolution chart.

Helena Avelar


(1) As the Melancholic is Cold and Dry, and the Choleric, Hot and Dry.

(2) For a complete calculation on the Temperament refer to Luís Ribeiro’s article “Judging Temperament: a study of the method”, published in The Tradition journal, 1st and 2nd issues (Autumn 08).

(3) William Lilly, Christian Astrology, page 646: “human signs, denote death by a man, as by arms or violence”.

(4) The violent signs are: Aries, Scorpio, Capricorn, Aquarius and Libra, according to William Lilly, C.A. page 644. For the complete delineation for violent death refer to C.A. page 644, chapter CLVI (of death, whether violent or natural).

(5) This event helped the rectification of this chart; the original time given by Astrodatabank from the birth certificate was 01:00 AM, which corresponds to 10º32’ Virgo rising; the chart was rectified in 6 minutes, which changes the Ascendant into 11º38’ Virgo rising.

(6) To be precise: Mars is in the 12th house, as it does not comply to the 5 degree rule, but its orb still reaches the Ascendant and it is conjunct the Moon and Saturn, which are conjunct to the Ascendant.


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