Those Wild Out-of-Bounds Planets

umbrella rainbow

by Pamela Welch
(Originally published in The Mountain Astrologer magazine. Republished in remembrance of Pamela, who passed away in March 2012.)

Everyone has probably heard that old familiar sports term: “Out-of-bounds!” Regardless of the sport involved, these words mean that the ball or player has gone beyond the limits of the established field of play. Could a similar dynamic be impacting the planetary play on the field of your birth chart? You bet! Out-of-bounds planets can take us beyond the established limits of thought and action. They can signify extraordinary genius or point to volatile and aberrant behavior. This article will explain the principles involved in out-of-bounds dynamics, show how these planetary elements can operate in a person’s life and discuss ways to interpret how these natal energies will manifest.

How Planets Go Out of Bounds

Out-of-bounds planets involve two dynamics: declination and the ecliptic. The ecliptic is the apparent path of the Sun in its yearly motion across the sky. Of course, in reality we know that it is not the Sun that is moving, but rather the Earth that is orbiting around the Sun. Thus, the ecliptic is actually the plane of the Earth’s orbit. Usually when we speak of astrological coordinates − for example, “My natal Saturn is at 14° Virgo” − we are giving the planet’s position in geocentric celestial longitude. This measurement, which is part of the ecliptic coordinate system, expresses the planet’s distance along the ecliptic from 0° Aries as viewed from Earth. However, in addition to this system which uses the ecliptic as its reference point, we also have what’s called the equatorial coordinate system which uses the Earth’s equator rather than the ecliptic as its plane of reference. Declination, which measures the angular distance of a heavenly body north or south of the celestial equator, is part of this equatorial system.

An easy way to comprehend declination is to simply imagine the parallels of latitude on a terrestrial map extended out into celestial space. The latitude lines that are projected in this way beyond our planet’s surface are called parallels of declination in the equatorial coordinate system. If you think of the Earth’s equator extending out into space to create the celestial equator at 0°, the parallels of declination involve those coordinates north or south of this plane.

Due to the tilt of the Earth on its axis, the Sun’s path varies in declination between about 23°27’ north of the equator at the Tropic of Cancer (summer solstice in the northern hemisphere) and 23°27’south at the Tropic of Capricorn (winter solstice). (See the Diagram at the end of this article.) When a celestial body goes beyond this maximum declination of 23°27’, either north or south, it is considered out-of-bounds. In that position, the planet is outside the boundary limits of the ecliptic plane − that is, beyond the plane of the Earth’s orbit around the Sun. The exact maximum declination of the Sun, which varies slightly by seconds from year to year, is now actually a little less than 23°27’. However, even at 23°27’01”, a planet is just beginning to go out-of-bounds without much noticeable effect. Because of this and the fact that many ephemerides and computer programs only give declination in degrees and minutes, I find it easier and more measurably significant to simply use planetary positions of at least 23°28’ declination.

Because the Moon and inner planets achieve higher declinations, they are the ones more frequently considered in working with the out-of-bounds phenomenon. (The asteroids can also go out-of-bounds; however, they won’t be specifically mentioned in this article.) Uranus and Pluto go out-of-bounds less frequently and stay there for longer periods. Saturn and Neptune have practically the same declination as the Sun while Jupiter only goes a few minutes beyond 23°27’. The Moon, on the other hand, can reach a declination of almost 29° every 18.6 years when the North Node is near 0° Aries. Mercury achieves a declination of 27°. Mars can usually only reach 27° too. However, in 1907 Mars got out to 28S54. On rare occasions, Venus will also reach 28°. I’ve found that generally the higher the degree of declination, the more pronounced the effect of the out-of-bounds planet will be, whether this is expressed in terms of greater accomplishment for the native or in some type of abnormal behavior.

The Influence of Out-of-Bounds Planets

Let’s take a more specific look now at exactly how an out-of-bounds planet will operate in an individual’s life. In most cases, my discussion will include both a planet’s declination and its sign placement in the more familiar geocentric longitude to help you integrate out-of-bounds dynamics into your astrological chart analysis.

As you might guess, people with an out-of-bounds planet tend to know no boundaries and accept no limits. Often there’s no stopping them. This can result in boundless creativity and success, allowing the native to go way beyond the potential that one might normally expect. For example, Albert Einstein who has an out-of-bounds Moon in Sagittarius near the 6th house cusp, creatively provided a whole new paradigm in regards to time and space through his work on the theory of relativity. His philosophical beliefs weren’t constrained by his era’s prevailing system of thought. Natives with an out-of-bounds planet like to break the rules in this way and color outside the lines. A client of mine with an out-of-bounds Moon in Sagittarius in the 1st house is currently in the process of writing an epic narrative poem akin to Beowulf. When was the last time anyone attempted that? This is the kind of unconventional and “outside the norm” expression you often see in someone with an out-of-bounds planet. Such individuals can often achieve extraordinary things and overcome great obstacles in life.

However, an out-of-bounds planet can also be negatively expressed, leading to abnormal or unstable behavior which is outside the accepted standards of society. Its energy can indicate a tendency toward mental imbalance or at the very least create a lot of pressure and stress in an individual’s life. The highest declination Moon I’ve ever seen in my astrology practice (28°S18’) was in the chart of a man suffering from bipolar disorder (manic-depression).

There is a fine line between genius and insanity and sometimes you will see both positive and dysfunctional elements in the lives of those with out-of-bounds planets. Judy Garland, for example, had two out-of-bounds planets – Venus in Cancer in the 1st house and Mars in Sagittarius in the 6th. Garland was certainly a sensitive beauty. However, she was also overworked as a child star and encouraged to take amphetamines. Venus is quincunx Mars in her chart and it may have been difficult for her to reconcile her emotional insecurities and desire for a loving, peaceful environment (Venus in Cancer) with the demands for her to be an energetic and exuberant working star (Mars in Sagittarius). Although she had tremendous success as an actress and singer from a young age, she also suffered from health problems and depressive mental illness accompanied by an addiction to prescription medications. This resulted in several suicide attempts and finally death. Although Venus is only at 23°N 49’declination, Mars is at 25°S 55’, creating greater instability. Mars opposite her Sun in Gemini in the 12th house is an indicator of subconscious anger directed inward in aggression towards herself. Such suppression of deeper feelings may have led to Garland’s depression as well as the ultimate act of brutality toward the self — suicide.

Often, people with out-of-bounds planets seem to get away with more somehow, or try to. They can be those individual’s that are always pushing the limits of what we commonly accept in society. With an out-of-bounds Mercury in Gemini, Dr. Jack Kevorkian, the physician who believes in euthanasia for the terminally ill, is certainly one of these people. He has had repeated conflict with the law for his belief in assisted suicide. Mercury is related to the physician and healing. However, mythically the Roman god Mercury could also put people asleep with his magic wand or be a messenger of death. Kevorkian has certainly taken on this aspect of Mercury’s expression. With Mercury at 25°>N39’ declination, we would expect to see this type of more radical behavior in support of his extremely adamant opinions.

American talk-show host, Howard Stern, also with an out-of-bounds Mercury (23°S41), is another iconoclast pushing the envelope of societies accepted norms. He loves to shock his radio audience with sexually oriented and socially unacceptable topics such as flatulence and penis size. Stern’s natal Mercury in Capricorn is conjunct Venus, Sun, Chiron and North Node, all in that same sign. He’s certainly achieved fame and star status with his irreverent radio show, biographical book, “Private Parts,” and subsequent movie by the same name. His Capricorn coldness is evident as he talks about people as little more than objects for appraisal. Stern’s out-of-bounds Mercury is in opposition to Uranus and South Node in Cancer and this definitely fits his shock jock demeanor which loves to upset the “status quo.” However, Cancer can be a vulnerable sign and his movie, “Private Parts” illustrated his early anxiety and self-doubt. To this day, when Stern is out of the sound booth and no longer on air, he’s said to be full of insecurities. His outrageous and domineering style may be a front for deeper vulnerabilities.

Daredevil Evel Knievel had an out-of-bounds Venus in Sagittarius within two degrees of his Midheaven at the high declination of 26°S17. His somewhat bizarre stunts went way beyond even the extreme end of adventure sports. Adventure was certainly his indulgence as well as his career and the way he attracted money along with admiring women. No doubt, there was a kind of grace he exhibited as his motorcycle flew like an arrow over a row of cars or a tank full of sharks. Out-of-bounds Venus is also quintile Neptune which is conjunct Mars in Virgo in his chart. The quintile (72°) indicates spontaneous creative expression and mental or artistic talents. You could say that Knievel had a creative talent for dissolving the boundaries of what is normally considered possible for the physical body. The mental energy of quintiles also excels at the kind of exact engineering calculations which were probably required as part of the preparations for his stunts.

However, Venus in Sagittarius can lead to a vain belief that you can do anything and a Mars-Neptune conjunction can also characterize a weakening of one’s physical condition. Consequently, with Venus trine Pluto (destruction, death) in Leo in the 6th-house of health, in addition to Saturn square 6th-house Chiron, Evel had numerous injuries, broken bones, and subsequent operations during his career. With out-of-bounds Venus in the sign that rules the Liver, in addition to a 1st-house Jupiter in Aquarius, it is not surprising that during one of these operations, he contracted Hepatitis C from a blood transfusion. This resulted in a liver transplant operation for him in 1999. Venus is also in a quindecile aspect to 3rd-house Uranus in Taurus. The quindecile aspect (165°) represents a disruption or compulsion, an obsessive influence which can draw one away from the main thrust of life development. Knievel’s stubborn obsession with adventure and his vain compulsion to do anything to shock his admiring fans resulted in many damaging jolts to his body.

Knievel also had a reputation for being an out of control hell-raiser, an excessive behavior associated with his out-of-bounds Venus in Sagittarius. It helps that in addition to the quindecile to Uranus and trine with Pluto, Venus is also sextile his Aquarius Ascendant which opposes Pluto. He had a history of aggression and was once arrested on charges of beating (Pluto) his girlfriend (Venus).

An out-of-bounds Mars is found in the natal chart of diplomat Henry Kissinger. Considering the assertive nature of Mars, this might seem strange for someone who was recipient of the Nobel Peace Prize in 1973. In actuality, Kissinger is an interesting mix. With a 1st-house OOB Mars in Gemini, he courageously negotiated diplomatic dialogues with heads of state in order to end aggressive conflicts such as the Vietnam War. This is supported by his 12th-house Sun-Mercury conjunction in Gemini (secret talks in closed sessions) trine Saturn in Libra and the trine of Kissinger’s Mars to his Moon in Libra, which potentially keeps its bellicose nature more peacefully directed. With Saturn also broadly conjunct his Libra Moon, he was able to make his lack of emotion work for him by asserting himself with peaceful words. At 28° Gemini in the third decan of this sign, Mars can also be less impulsive, more ruled by reason and the power of the objective mind. Kissinger was thus able to summon great courage and overcome difficult obstacles in dealing with many tense political situations.

However, we now know that Kissinger also covertly initiated atrocities and violent acts in Vietnam. In addition, he brought the downfall of the democratic Allende government in Chile in the ‘70’s to support the Chilean leader, General Augusto Pinochet, who tortured his people. (See The Trial of Henry Kissinger by Christopher Hitchens.) In this respect, Kissinger’s lack of emotion may have created an “end justifies the means” mentality.

Nevertheless, out-of-bounds Mars is found more frequently in the charts of courageous or creative individuals and great leaders than it is in violent criminals. It can also indicate an “off the charts” type of athletic ability as it does with golfer Tiger Woods, who has Mars in Gemini opposite the Moon in Sagittarius square a Virgo Ascendant.

The Out-of-Bounds Moon

Individuals with an out-of-bounds Moon are usually very unique and independent people who enjoy their freedom and solitude. However, because the Moon represents the subconscious emotional imprint, its energy can be deeply felt by the native who has this luminary out-of-bounds. People sometimes suffer from the pressure of its turbulent effects and often there is a tendency to experience loss or unsettling conditions, especially within one’s family. Due to the Moon’s changing nature and association with emotions, there is an increased likelihood for extreme sensitivity, emotional instability or mood swings, and feelings of doubt, guilt or depression when it is found out-of-bounds. Also, the Moon’s tendency toward insecurity can become a full blown paranoia. There may be an underlying sense that one’s basic security is being undermined or threatened in some way. This is often accompanied by an instinctive and irrational reaction of fear or suspicion. For instance, a client of mine with an out-of-bounds Moon in Taurus, desperately and tenaciously works for material success out of fear that she will end up like her father, a Pisces, who followed his dream but was financially unsuccessful.

Sometimes the insecure feelings will manifest physically as health issues. Frequently, this comes in the form of food compulsivity or weight problems because of the subconscious link between food and emotional nourishment. A larger size or the insulation of weight can also unconsciously represent protection from any perceived threat.

Linda Tripp, for example, has an out-of-bounds Moon (25°S28’) conjunct out-of-bounds Venus (25°S12’) in Capricorn. Her political paranoia and maternal over protection of White House intern, Monica Lewinsky, led to extreme measures. Tripp taped intimate conversations that she had with Lewinsky about her affair with President Clinton for prosecutor Ken Starr. True to her out-of-bounds Moon, Tripp later said she did it for her own protection and because she felt it was her “patriotic duty.” She claims to have received threatening messages from President Clinton via Monica in regards to testifying in the Paula Jones sexual harassment case. According to Tripp, she feared that she would lose her job or be charged with perjury because she was being pressured by Lewinsky to be a team player and lie for the president in the case.

In Tripp’s natal chart, the Moon and Venus are conjunct Jupiter in Capricorn. Tripp may have had big plans for political favors or money from a book deal in mind when she secretly taped her friend (Venus semisquare 12th–house Sun-Mercury), although she now says she’s never profited in any way. Jupiter conjunct 2nd-house Venus-Moon and Venus quincunx Pluto in the 9th-house made the righteous subterfuge that much bigger. These planetary placements show the potential for zealous beliefs and a rigidly judgmental value system along with a subconscious desire for a powerful or prominent social position. In fact, in an interview in George magazine, Tripp admits to her judgmental inflexibility and states that she dreamed of working at the White House since she was eight years old.

The ambition of a Capricorn Moon can be callous and many Americans considered Tripp’s taping of private conversations with Monica the ultimate betrayal of a friend. Venus square Neptune in Libra often shows such deception in a relationship and Neptune’s wider orb square to the out-of-bounds Moon added to Tripp’s paranoia regarding her enemies in power. With Venus square 4th-house North Node in Aries as part of the t-square to Neptune, she felt compelled to use the deceit for her own safety and self-preservation. The quindecile between Venus and Uranus in Cancer in the 7th-house gave her the obsession with love life in Washington as well as the emotional detachment to perform such a breach of a friend’s personal trust. The Venus trine to 9th-house Saturn and Mars in Virgo helped Tripp participate in the critical attack on the President who she felt was misusing both political and sexual power.

As is sometimes seen with an out-of-bounds Moon, Tripp’s actions may have been subconsciously motivated by a need for security and love. This is especially true in her case with the Moon conjunct Venus. She admits to lacking a personal self-confidence (Sun in the 12th-house), although she’s experienced it professionally (Jupiter conjunct the Moon in Capricorn). The New York Times reported that in her high school yearbook she describes her pet peeve as “a certain fair-weather friend.” This is telling not only because of what she later did to Monica Lewinsky, but also because of the much earlier fear of betrayal it shows related to the out-of-bounds Moon.

Venus quindecile Uranus in Cancer indicates that these issues may be rooted in some disruption of the basic home life in childhood that affected her sense of emotional security with others. The Capricorn Moon often indicates a mother or caretaker who was more of a drill sergeant than a nurturer and Venus trine Saturn and Mars in Virgo can relate to a critical father. Linda’s mother, who was staunchly German, was intimidated by her father who ruled the family with an iron fist. Tripp has stated that no matter how much she tried she couldn’t get the approval of her strict father. He deserted the family for another woman when she was still in high school and Linda suffered through the subsequent painful divorce of her parents. Tripp’s obsession with bringing down the powerful philanderer, Clinton, may have been based on her need to rebel against her father’s earlier actions of infidelity (Uranus quindecile Venus in Capricorn).

These emotional issues probably contributed to Tripp’s weight problem and she was insecure (Moon) about her looks (Venus). She admits that she deals with the difficulties in her life through food, a symptom of her out-of-bounds Moon, and that she was horrified by how unattractive she looked. After being scandalized by the press and ridiculed by late night comedians, Tripp had expensive cosmetic surgery that was paid for by a supporter. Considering the extreme emotional sensitivity of individuals with out-of-bounds Moon, the constant derision about her appearance must have been devastating for her. I’m sure she suffered greatly. Consequently, she had two plastic surgeries to reconstruct her face, making her more attractive (Capricorn Venus trine Saturn-Mars in Virgo), along with losing 30 pounds and having a total makeover to change her entire look.

Tripp was indicted by a grand jury for illegal wiretapping on July 30, 1999 when her solar arc directed Moon in Pisces opposed natal Saturn. Contacts involving the progressed or directed Moon are particularly important for people born with it out-of-bounds. They can often signify pivotal events such as this in the native’s life. These felony charges have since been dropped. However, Tripp is currently suing the White House and the Defense Department, her former employer, for leaking information to the press from her personal file for purposes of discrediting her.

Oprah Winfrey is another woman with an out-of-bounds Moon (24°S59’) who has struggled with her weight. Her Moon in Sagittarius on the 12th-house cusp quindecile Jupiter in the 6th shows both the subconscious compulsion to eat, accompanied by the expanding physical size, and also the obsession with diet. The sometimes wildly erratic nature of the out-of-bounds Moon contributed to the changing fluctuations in Oprah’s weight. Often a native with an out-of-bounds Moon will resist any thing that even feels like a limitation or restriction, an inconvenient trait if you’re dieting. Oprah admittedly prefers the freedom of spontaneity and even refuses to set future goals because she feels it is too confining.

Influence of the Mother

The out-of-bounds Moon often reveals an overachiever who is unconsciously seeking success, prominence or material security as a substitute for the love and attention that was not received from the mother during childhood years, something that may have plagued both Oprah and Linda Tripp. Oprah was born illegitimate and poor in the Deep South. At a young age, she was abandoned by her mother who went North to work and left to live with her grandmother. Oprah has tremendous drive and does the job of four people as she hosts a TV show, acts, spearheads a magazine, and runs her own production company, Harpo. She has also taught a “Dynamics of Leadership” class at Northwestern University and served as a philanthropist providing over five million dollars in scholarships through her Angel Network (benevolent Jupiter in the 6th house of service). In addition to the weight issue, Oprah’s Moon-Jupiter quindecile can indicate a compulsion to overwork (6th house). It is no secret that she works long hours, sometimes 16-hour days, and that she can be a hard driving worker obsessed with perfection. Oprah also admits that an inability to say “No” in former years was due to wanting to be liked by others. Part of Oprah’s drive to succeed may have been due to the hidden emotional wound resulting from the earlier abandonment by her mother.

The 12th-house Moon in Sagittarius gives Oprah the need to tell the truth and an impetus to nurture and educate society spiritually. Anyone who watches Oprah’s TV show, reads her magazine, or has attended one of her personal growth summits is familiar with the emphasis she puts on the spiritual aspect of life. She says a prayer before every show. Oprah is a truth seeker who listens to an inner voice and she has the ability to uplift and encourage others with her spiritual philosophy. On the boundary between the 11th and 12th houses, the Sagittarius Moon helps her to be a bridge bringing spiritual ideals (12th) to many diverse groups (11th). She is an inspirational teacher to many.

Not surprisingly, Oprah got her first talk-show job in Baltimore as co-host of WJZ-TV’s “People are Talking” when her solar arc directed Moon conjunct her Ascendant in 1978. This was especially momentous in Oprah’s case since her Ascendant is at 29°42’ Sagittarius and close to the 0° Capricorn winter solstice point. Directed to this point, Oprah’s out-of-bounds Moon was announcing that her career success was just beginning to germinate and would soon be on the rise. Interestingly, the Sabian symbol for 30° Sagittarius is “The Pope, blessing the faithful,” and she has since been accused of trying to start the “church of Oprah” with segments like “Remembering your Spirit” on her current television show.

Moon and Ascendant in Sagittarius as well as Jupiter in Gemini gives Oprah the ability to expand the dimensions of other people’s lives, to educate them, and communicate broader philosophies of life to society. 6th-house Jupiter can work hard at the truth and Oprah has made this her job. She has said that it is the educational aspect of her TV show and the ability to change lives that she most enjoys. Jupiter in Gemini indicates the communication of faith and optimism and Oprah’s out-of-bounds Moon in Sagittarius amplifies this to the maximum. This belief in something better has been a foundational part of Oprah’s own life and a motivation for others. Characteristic of her out-of-bounds Moon, she never recognized or even considered that any of her challenging life circumstances might limit her in any way. She started her public speaking career reciting inspirational sermons in church at the remarkably young age of three and a half years old, part of the atypical expression of the out-of-bounds Moon in Sagittarius. In fact, in the fourth grade Oprah was known as “preacher.” Her out-of-bounds Moon is also quintile Mercury, resulting in the extraordinary intellectual gifts and talented abilities as a child orator and adult talk-show host.

Jupiter also represents one’s inner teacher and with this planet in a quindecile aspect to her out-of-bounds Moon, it has been a life long process for Oprah to trust hers. After years of codependence seeking to please others, a symptom of her childhood abandonment and the victimization of sexual abuse, she has learned to speak her truth and listen to her inner voice as well as her lunar instincts. The Novile (40°) aspect between her Moon and the often codependent Neptune in Libra provided the creative inspiration that enabled her to find a spiritual rebirth out of the captivity of this old pattern. Oprah’s life definitely shows how the energy of the out-of-bounds Moon can be used to overcome great obstacles.

Transiting planets can be significant activators for a natal out-of-bounds energy. When transiting Pluto completed its long conjunction to her natal Moon in 1998, Oprah was devastated and depressed by the public’s negative response to her movie, Beloved. This film project was her baby. She nurtured the movie’s unfolding and then, at its birth, the product of her labor was rejected. Perhaps, the grief of a much older and deeper rejection linked with her out-of-bounds Moon was surfacing for her at that time. On the other hand, when transiting Jupiter opposed her out-of-bounds Moon, Oprah’s new publication, “O,” went over the top to become the most successful magazine start-up ever.

Working With Out-of-Bounds Planets

As this article illustrates, out-of-bounds planets signify one important aspect of astrological interpretation, especially in relationship to psychological factors and the potential for achievement. Today, planetary declination positions are available as part of most astrology computer programs. “Current declination positions can also be found in The American Ephemeris (2001-2010), the Astrolabe World Ephemeris (2001-2050) as well as the Raphael and Rosicrucian Ephemerides.” A plus sign (+) is used to indicate a northern declination and a minus (-) denotes a southern declination.

To identify out-of-bounds planets, note if the Moon or planet is beyond 23°27’declination and to what extent. As mentioned earlier, planets with higher declination numbers may have more of an impact than those that aren’t significantly beyond 23°27’. To interpret the planet’s effect, consider the qualities and characteristics normally associated with the planet involved and then think how it might manifest if it was behaving in a very extreme way. For example, when Mars is out-of-bounds, its natural assertion and physical energy can become violently aggressive or produce extraordinary courage and physical abilities. The alluring charm and aesthetic beauty of Venus can produce extremely vain indulgence or exceptional artistic talent. The planet’s sign and house placement will, of course, give more specific information about its expression.

As I have illustrated here, always look at the chart as a whole along with the aspects that are formed with the out-of-bounds planet. Positive aspects can mitigate the potential for a dysfunctional expression of the out-of-bounds planet by directing the energy in more productive ways. Challenging aspects can increase the likelihood of more abnormal behavior. For example, Oprah’s quintile aspect between out-of-bounds Moon and Mercury indicate her intelligence and talent for talk. The 1st-house Chiron conjunct North Node in Capricorn provided the opportunity for her to heal the lack of empowerment from childhood so that she could become a successful business maverick in the field of communications. Even so, the challenging Moon-Jupiter quindecile shows where the Moon’s out-of-bounds energy has had its most extreme expression through her weight problems and the insatiable energy she has for work on numerous projects. There may have been times that she needed to cut back on her workload, but just couldn’t stop.

On the other hand, even though he experienced professional success, Evel Knievel’s grand square in fixed signs, in addition to his quindecile between out-of-bounds Venus and Uranus as well as between Mercury-Uranus and Mercury-Saturn, indicate the chance for getting stuck in more compulsive or erratic thinking and behavior. Also, having more than one out-of-bounds planet in the chart increases the odds that the influence will be highly stressful. This is especially true when there are challenging aspects (square, opposition, quindecile, quincunx) between the two out-of-bounds planets, as in the case of Judy Garland.

Hopefully, this article has been an informative introduction to out-of-bounds planets that has also sparked your interest in declinations. There is certainly much more in this exciting world to explore. For example, even if a person does not have a natal planet out-of-bounds, through progression the Moon or planet may at some point step out-of-bounds. Depending on the planet’s length of time beyond the maximum declination of the Sun, this could be a short or long term influence on the native’s life. Begin to utilize these elements in your chart interpretation and see what you discover. Remember, even though an out-of-bounds Moon or planet can be challenging, it can also indicate your most extraordinary qualities. By becoming conscious of out-of-bounds planets, you can tap into their unlimited potential. So, have fun coloring outside the lines!

© 2001. Pamela Welch. All Rights Reserved.

Chart Data and Source

Albert Einstein, March 14, 1879; 11:30 a.m. LMT; Ulm, Germany (48°N24’, 10°E00’); Lois Rodden reports AA: Birth Record quoted by Ebertin, AstroDatabank
Judy Garland, June 10, 1922; 6:00 a.m. CST; Grand Rapids, MN (47°N14’, 93°W32’); Rodden Reports AA: Birth Record, AstroDatabank.
Dr. Jack Kevorkian, May 26, 1928; Pontiac MI (83°W17’, 42°N38’); Rodden reports X: Joanna Shannon quotes New York Times date with no time of birth, AstroDatabank –
Howard Stern, January 12, 1954; New York, NY (74°W00’, 40°N43’); Rodden reports X: Media quotes date, time unknown, AstroDatabank –
Robert Craig (Evel) Knievel – October 17, 1938; 2:40 p.m.; Butte, MT (112°W32’, 46°N00’); Rodden reports B: Birth data from Contemporary American Horoscopes, Gauquelin Book of American Charts; AstroDatabank –
Henry Kissinger, May 27, 1923; 5:30 a.m. CET; Furth, Germany (10°E59’, 49°N28’); Rodden reports AA: Birth Certificate data confirmed by cousin, AstroDatabank.
Tiger Woods, Dec. 30, 1975; 10:50 p.m.; Long Beach, CA (118°W11’, 33°N46’); Rodden reports AA: Birth Certificate in hand.
Linda Tripp – November 24, 1949; 8:00 a.m. EST; Jersey City, NJ (40°N44’, 74°W05’); Rodden reports AA: Birth Certificate in hand, AstroDatabank –
Oprah Winfrey, January 29, 1954; 4:30 a.m. CST; Kosciusko, MS (33°N03’, 89°W35’); Rodden reports A: Astrologer Robert Marks quotes Oprah from when he was on her show in 1988, AstroDatabank –  Note: this is an updated birth time reported by Marks to Lois Rodden on 10/02/2000.

References & Notes

1. I would like to thank Kt Boehrer, pioneer of the Out-of-bounds concept, and Leigh Westin for their helpful works on declination and out-of-bounds planets. See, Kt Boehrer’s book, Declination: The Other Dimension (available from AFA, P.O. Box 22040, Tempe, AZ, 85285 USA, (888) 301-7630) and Leigh Westin’s book, Beyond the Solstice by Declination (available from Gheminee, P.O. Box 3874, Brookhaven, MS, 39603 USA) for more information.
2. The exact angular distance between the ecliptic plane and the celestial equator, called the obliquity of the ecliptic, varies over time. Since this also marks the maximum angular distance that the Sun can reach north or south of the celestial equator at the times of the solstices, the Sun’s maximum declination changes as part of this process. It can vary somewhat from year to year, moving forward and then backwards a few seconds until it finally moves past a certain point permanently. For example, at winter solstice 1999 it was at 23°26’15”, but in winter 2001 it was back up to 23°26’20”. Then, at winter solstice 2004, it will reach 23°26’27” and by 2010 it will be back down to 23°26’17”. Over an approximate period of 40,000 years, it varies from 21°59’ to 24°36’.
3. Pluto, for example, was out-of-bounds for 15 years from 1938-1953. The fact that it was out-of-bounds while in Leo may be one of the reasons why the Pluto in Leo age group has been such an out there “me” generation. Because Pluto and Uranus are out-of-bounds for longer periods, there is a collective level significance to such times. In their article, “Uranus and Pluto Out of Bounds,” Geocosmic Magazine (Spring 1998), Charles and Lois Hannan point out the importance of out-of-bounds Uranus and Pluto in regards to world war and revolution. Because Uranus and Pluto are outer transpersonal planets that carry more of a celestial punch, they have an important impact for individuals when out-of-bounds as well. They both go beyond 23°30’, an astrological indicator that Mitchell Gibson considers important in determining extreme behavior. (Uranus stays within about 24°. Pluto has been around 24° in the 1900’s, but got out to 26S33 in the 1200’s.) He discusses this elevation by extreme declination in his book, Signs of Mental Illness (Llewellyn 1998).
4. Kt Boehrer, Declination: The Other Dimension, El Paso, TX: Fortunata Press, 1994.
5. In his book, Signs of Mental Illness (Llewellyn 1998), Mitchell Gibson also utilizes such planetary declination in his examination of what determines psychopathology.
6. Garland had additional planetary placements significant of depression. See Barbara Banfield’s article, “The Astrology of Depression” in The Mountain Astrologer (Aug/Sept 2000).
7. Lois Rodden, from her AstroDatabank web site – Mentioned in the biographical data for Howard Stern.
8. Lois Rodden, from her AstroDatabank web site – Mentioned in the biographical data for Evel Knievel.
9. The subdivision of the signs into 10° arcs is referred to as the first, second and third decans or decanates. Interpretation is based upon a system of planetary rulership assigned to each decan.
10. I was first introduced to this information regarding the nature of the out-of-bounds Moon through Kt Boehrers article, “The Moon Has Her Reasons,” Geocosmic Magazine (Spring 1998). Also see her book, Declination: The Other Dimension.
11. Moon and Venus are also parallel since they are both south in the same degree of declination.
12. Biographical information comes from Nancy Collins’ interview of Linda Tripp in George magazine, Dec/Jan, 2001 and her Tripp interview on ABC’s 20/20 TV show on Jan 12, 2001.
13. Nancy Collins, “I’d Do It All Over Again,” George, Dec/Jan, 2001.
14. Elaine Sciolino and Don Van Natta Jr., “Testing Of A President: The Confidant; Linda Tripp, Elusive Keeper Of Secrets, Mainly Her Own,” New York Times, Sunday, March 15, 1998,
15. Solar arc is a direction technique in which the arc distance in longitude between the natal and progressed Sun position is calculated and then added to all relevant natal positions.
16. Bibliographical information on Oprah’s life was found in the article by Lynette Clemetson, “Oprah On Oprah,” Newsweek, Jan 8, 2001 and on the Academy of Achievement web site
17. See footnote 10.
18. The Novile (40°) represents inspiration, initiation and the birth that comes out of a spiritual stillness, or out of captivity as Dane Rudyar expressed it, as well as a means to nourish that birth.
19. Tools for working with challenging natal issues in order to come into alignment with the planet’s true intent can be obtained through a personal astrological consultation with me or found in my book, The Energy Body Connection: The Healing Experience of Self-Embodiment, St. Paul, MN: Llewellyn Publications, 2000.

Venus Out of Bounds

Venus out of Bounds Want to learn more about Venus out of bounds? Join Tony Howard for a complete webinar class exploring several charts of key figures with natal Venus out of bounds.

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Jill Zahner

Hi! I’m confused about your Albert Einstein reference. Lois Rodden’s dBank indicates his moon at 14 degress 31 minutes of Sagittarius. Thus, it would appear that his moon is not out-of-bounds, or that I could be misunderstanding something. Any pointers?

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