The Flight of the Hindenburg

hind1xThere are some events that become etched in the collective psyche, taking on almost mythical dimensions. Certainly, the explosion of the Hindenburg falls into that category as does the sinking of the Titanic – “the ship that even God couldn’t sink.”

A zeppelin requires enormous amounts of flammable gas to operate, The fact that they flew in electrical storms and on bombing missions in WWI seems counter-intuitive. The fact is they were a marvel of  engineering and considered very safe and efficient.

Most are unaware of the long time success of the airships and the fact that this single event put an end to it all. For almost three decades, travel on German commercial zeppelins saw tens of thousands of passengers flying over a million miles on more than 2,000 flights without a single injury.

What was it about the conditions of this last flight that caused the catastrophe?  Technicians are still not in total agreement about  why this particular zeppelin failed so spectacularly.


From a traditional astrological point of view there are several elements of interest, many of which appear to be errily literal, insofar as anything can be truly literal.  I’ll be looking at the charts for the departure from Frankfurt and the explosion in Lakehurst, NJ.The times and dates are 03 May 1937, 7:16 PM (CET – 1) and 06 May 1937, 7:25 PM (EDT = 4) respectively.

In the chart of departure, the first element of interest in the Scorpio Ascendant in Via Combusta  The Pre Natal Lunation is within 3.5° of the Ascendant. In fact, the Ascendants of the departure and combustion chart are a mere 2° apart.  This provides us with a rich study of the seed and fruition of the event.

This gives us a chart with fixed angles. If this were a horary chart, it would indicate ,misfortune on the part of the querent. ‘The term translates as Fiery Road’ or ‘Combust Way’.e

Perseus with head of Algol

The constellation Perseus and Algol, the Bright Star in the Gorgon’s head – Johannes Hevelius, Uranographia, 1690

The Ascendant is the place of the helmsman in Hellenistic astrology.  In this case the Helmsman is a retrograde Mars in aversion to  the Ascendant.

The Helmsman has no direct control of the ship. This gives us the image of the zeppelin taking off and exploding in the way of fire. Mars and the Nodal Axis are in the axis known as the Gates of Hades. Mars is also in opposition to the South Node in the opposite sign of it’s Exaltation. In spite of its condition, Mars is the Almuten Figuris of the chart. He is however in no position to steer the ship.

The scenario is already looking quite deadly. We find a Martial Venus in an unfortunate house and retrograde. The sixth house is the house of sickness and of the people, as in subjects or citizens of the realm, but in this case could just as well be the passengers According to the rules of Guido Bonatti Venus is the “killing planet” and Lord of the Twelfth House

We find Mercury in Taurus Rx in the house of open enemies, disposited by a debilitated Venus and conjunct the very unfortunate star, Algol meaning to lose one’s head. In many photos of the event, the Hindenburg appears to be having it’s “head” snapped off.

Mercury is also parallel Canopus, known to the Greeks as the rudder of the Celestial Ship. As if to underscore the danger here, we also find Mercury contrary to Sect and not in his chariot, according to Hellenistic thought. He is incapable of competence, but is nevertheless goaded into action.  In the house of the open enemy, his actions cannot be benign. They are in effect malevolent.


When we focus on the chart for the explosion during attempts to land in Lakehurst, the first thing of significance is the near exact degree of the Ascendant. This had not been planned. As mentioned, the zeppelin was several hours behind schedule.

It is also intriguing that the planetary Hour belongs to Mercury. On departure it had been in the Hour of the Sun. The appalling condition of Mercury conjunct Algol is Lord of the Eighth House of Death. The Eighth is in the Mutable Air Sign of Gemini, the placement of the S. Node and opposed by Retrograde Mars, in term disposited by a weak Jupiter in the domicile of Saturn. Jupiter is for all intents and purposes Peregrine, possessing a Ruler / Term reception with Saturn and exaltation / term and term with Mars

Not a great deal has changed from the departure chart, except of course the Moon has passed from Aquarius to Pisces. In and of itself, I don’t see this as being central to the disaster, but with a change of Moon comes a change in the Part of Fortune, the Lord of which is Mercury. Mercury is essentially conducting the events by default

The Hindenburg was several hours behind schedule due to a number of elements, not least the wind and a minor electrical storm. We could say the airship reached the destiny promised by the chart for departure. As mentioned above, this is all rather eerily literal, but impossible to ignore.

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