The Turkish Earthquake

On 6 February 2023 at approximately 4:17 AM local time, the border region between Turkey and Syria was rocked by a massive 7.8 magnitude earthquake, estimated to be one of the deadliest of the decade.  As of this writing (Feb 12), more than 34,000 are confirmed dead, with much of the debris yet to be excavated for survivors or remains.  Known as the Kahramanmaras quake, for the nearest large city, the epicenter is closer to Nurdagi, a smaller town on the outskirts.

We’ll be looking at a chart cast for that location, as well as comparison to Turkey’s national chart (8:30 PM EET 29 October 1923, Ankara; Rodden Rating A).  There are no exact matches for Turkey or either of the associated cities, but asteroids Turku and Turkmenia will serve as markers of the country, also represented by asteroid Ankara, named for its capital, and asteroid Karamanov for the Kahramanmaris district, as closest phonetically. 

What stands out at first inspection is a precise T-Square of Jupiter at 7 Aries exactly opposed asteroid Osiris at 7 Libra, with centaur Pholus on their midpoint at the fulcrum, 7 Capricorn, exactly squared each.  Jupiter brings fame and notoriety, as well as increasing or expanding the effects of whatever it touches, for good or ill; Osiris is named for the ancient Egyptian god of the dead, bringing the element of mortality into the equation; and Pholus is associated with mass casualties, by whatever cause.  With pinpoint accuracy the cosmos reveals Turkey as the outlet for this energy pattern, with its 7 Cancer Ascendant perfectly filling in the empty leg of a Grand Cross.  In addition, Turkey’s natal Mercury at 7 Libra exactly conjoins Osiris, making death (Osiris)  the top news story (Mercury).  Further indicators of the locale are asteroids Turku at 1 Capricorn and Turkmenia at 4 Capricorn, both within orb of Pholus, and caught up generally in the transiting T-Square, marking Turkey as the area with the greatest loss of life.

An aerial photo shows the incredible devastation caused by the earthquake; an exact transit T-Square of Jupiter (expansionist, overblown energies), asteroid Osiris (death) and centaur Pholus (mass casualties) fits seamlessly into Turkey’s natal Ascendant, creating a Grand Cross that pinpoints the region affected

What is especially stunning about this pattern is the timing required to bring all these factors into alignment so precisely.  Osiris’ orbital period is just over 3.75 years, Jupiter circles the Sun in 12 years, and Pholus takes almost 92 earth years to make the same trip.  The celestial mechanics required to bring these widely disparate rates of movement into such perfect symmetry is truly staggering.  Add to that the inclusion of an Angle from a 100-year-old national birth chart, and the enmeshment is mind-blowing.

Consider also that Osiris is stationary, making it an embedded factor of the times, having turned retrograde just two days before the earthquake.  Osiris is thus at the peak of its power and ability to influence events.

turkey map
Map of the quake’s epicenter, along the fault line where the Anatolian and Arabian tectonic plates connect; transit asteroid Anatoliya exactly opposed Turkey’s natal Typhon; natal Anatoliya is at station, conjunct natal Pluto (destruction) and trine natal Typhon

Earthquakes are traditionally ascribed by astrology to the planet Uranus, but there is another point to consider: namely, TNO Typhon.  Typhon is named for a mythic Greek deity of the Titan pantheon, most noted as a storm god of the deep seas, and the root of our word “typhoon.”  TNO Typhon comes up regularly in charts of disastrous hurricanes, but its namesake was reputed also to cause earthquakes.  This is the first chart I have tested using Typhon in that capacity.

As regards Uranus, it is prominent for the day; at 15 Taurus, it is squared and highlighted by the 16 Aquarius Sun.  It is also dragging asteroid Ankara in its wake, at 10 Taurus, also squared by the Sun, focusing the world’s attention (Sun) on an earthquake (Uranus) in Turkey (Ankara).   The Moon at 20 Leo makes this a loose T-Square, which expands to an even looser Grand Cross when TNO Typhon at 22 Scorpio is included.  With Typhon at 23 Scorpio is asteroid Karamanov, our referent for the Kahramanmaris district, and squared these is Saturn at 26 Aquarius, ancient lord of death, as well as Damocles at 28 Aquarius, the looming threat hanging unseen overhead.

turkey typhon
Zeus battling Typhon, associated with earthquakes, from an ancient Greek vase; Typhon’s celestial namesake is conjoined transit asteroid Karamanov, for the Kahramanmaras district where the quake occurred, with Turkey’s natal Typhon conjoined its Midheaven, the focus of all eyes

Turkey’s birth chart shows a prominence for both natal Uranus and Typhon, which straddle the 16 Pisces Midheaven from 13 and 18 Pisces respectively.  This places both earthquake-related energies on highly visible display; opposing natal asteroid Turku at 10 Virgo, the effect is heightened.  A square from Typhon to natal asteroid Karamanov at 22 Gemini specifies the region to be affected, and a T-Square to natal asteroid Ankara at 22 Sagittarius once again identifies Turkey generally as at risk.  With Ankara is natal Pholus at 19 Sagittarius, recombining and restating the themes of earthquakes (Typhon) causing mass death (Pholus) in Turkey (Ankara).

This pattern was activated at the earthquake by transit Venus, which at 12 Pisces closely conjoined natal Uranus; and by transit asteroid Anatoliya, named for the general region of Anatolia, at 18 Virgo, exactly opposing natal Typhon.  At first blush, Venus, known as the Lesser Benefic, may seem an odd activator here.  But I would submit that this relates to the astonishing fact that, almost a week after the disaster, survivors are still being pulled alive from the rubble.  Venus is doing what she can to ease the situation.

turkey baby
An infant is pulled from the rubble days after the building above her collapsed; transit Venus conjoined Turkey’s natal Uranus and Typhon may be assisting rescue efforts, but transit Neptune tightly T-squared a natal Karamanov/Ankara opposition may be breeding delay and confusion (Neptune) between local authorities (Karamanov, for the Kahramanmaras district) and the national government (Ankara)

The transit Moon at 20 Leo is an exact match for Turkey’s natal Neptune, suggesting the depths of despair (Neptune) visited on the population (Moon) and the many victims (also Neptune), as well as the somewhat confused, delayed (both Neptune) response of some local authorities.  Transit Neptune at 23 Pisces, in a tight T-Square with natal Ankara and Karamanov, may be creating further difficulties in coordination of rescue attempts (also Neptune) between the capital (Ankara) and local governments (Karamanov).  Next up on the Moon’s monthly tour of Turkey’s chart are asteroids Osiris at 24 Leo, a noted death indicator, and Nemesis at 27 Leo, which depicts ruin or destruction, both of which are in orb of the transit Moon.

The transit Sun at 16 Aquarius had just passed over, and was still within orb of, natal asteroids Lachesis at 11 Aquarius, named for the mythic Greek Fate who determines the span of life, and Requiem at 14 Aquarius, named for the funeral mass for the dead.  These were also squared by transit Uranus/Ankara.

turkey ankara
Ankara, capital city of Turkey; transit asteroid Ankara conjoined transit Uranus, planetary ruler of earthquakes, squared by the Sun when the disaster struck; natal Ankara squares Typhon, also associated with earthquakes

The Kahramanmaras quake will likely go down as one of the deadliest natural disasters in recent memory, and hold a prominent place in Turkish history.  Only the earthquake of 1939 in Erzincan exceeds the current death toll in modern times, but it will likely be surpassed.  We can only hope that resources for recovery are made available by the international community and well-managed by local governments.

Alex Miller is a professional writer and astrologer, author of The Black Hole Book, detailing deep space points in astrological interpretation, and the forthcoming Heaven on Earth, a comprehensive study of asteroids, both mythic and personal. Alex is a frequent contributor to “The Mountain Astrologer”, “Daykeeper Journal”, and NCGR’s Journals and “Enews Commentary”; his work has also appeared in “Aspects” magazine, “Dell Horoscope”, “Planetwaves”, “Neptune Café” and “Sasstrology.” He is a past president of Philadelphia Astrological Society, and a former board member for the Philadelphia Chapter of NCGR.

2 comments, add yours.


Hi Alex! I was looking forward to seeing what you came up with for this devastating tragedy and you did not disappoint. I will definitely pay more attention to TNO Typhon now in earthquake charts, thank you for that. BTW and I can’t claim credit for discovering this as I read it first in a reader’s comment on Marjorie Orr’s site but this earthquake happened near the Uranus return of the 1939 Erzincan, Turkey quake and there were other links to it as well as like Neptune currently opposing Neptune then and Jupiter also in early Aries. Earthquakes are a fascinating area for astrological research. Thank you for your contribution!

Emma Esperanza Acosta

Thanks for this analysis, I would like to have a program where I can get the letter with the asteroids, thanks

Gracias po reste análisis, me gustaría tener un programa donde pueda sacar la carta con los asteroides, gracias

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