“I’ve heard that the soli-lunar midpoint is important in synastry. What role does it play?”
A midpoint is the place of ultimate tension between any two astrological factors. When planets or lights are involved, anything hitting that point will activate the development of both planets, and be strongly felt. It’s a very sensitive, almost hyperactive place in the chart. It works with any two positions, but has more impact when planets involved are in aspect.
The Soli-Lunar midpoint, is, of course, the midpoint between the Sun and the Moon. Given what we’ve been discussing as to the way the interplay of the Sun and the Moon affects our own development (see The Mystery of Solar Fire, and The Nodes: An Introduction) and our development within synastry, you can sense how important this particular midpoint might be. Aside from the angles, the Sun and the Moon are the strongest influences in our charts. They describe and orchestrate our ongoing development. The Soli-Lunar midpoint is the place the developmental energies collide. It’s the place where we actively transform who we are. If we have one of our own planets there, it will play a vital role in our growth; whether it will be easy or challenging will depend on its aspects, but it will certainly play a leading role.
Transits and progressions to the Soli-Lunar midpoint stimulate our development in a very concrete and often rapid way. Anyone who has had the long term transit of a heavy hitting planet over this midpoint can vouch for this. But the Soli-Lunar midpoint has a particular knack for working in terms of relationships, which attests to the power of symbolic partnership, the symbolic marriage of Sun and Moon (see The Marriage of Sun and Moon) as an outer experience of unity reflecting an inner one. Sometimes, transits or progressions to the Soli-Lunar midpoint will bring partnerships to us, working much like transits to either end of the Vertex axis or Ascendant axis.
When we meet anyone whose angles, planets or points conjunct our Soli-Lunar midpoint, they stimulate and excite us. We’re particularly susceptible to the relationship planets landing there (Sun/Moon/Venus/Mars/Saturn) but any planet will do. It works almost like a conjunction to the Descendant–there is something in this person, represented by the planet, that we feel we need. However, the Soli-Lunar midpoint does not symbolize an emptiness or lack, the way the Descendant does. It is an active point of being, almost Uranian in its operation. It facilitates moving us to a higher state of consciousness awareness.
When someone else’s planet or light hits your Soli-Lunar midpoint, there is often an intense fascination, almost a compulsion. For a time, this person can appear to hold the key to everything. It makes sense, because for a time, that’s what they symbolize, a living embodiment of the path to your future. There is the further internal pressure to merge with this human being in whatever way possible, to take this energy within. It’s as if we are hypnotized and compelled by the evolutionary and developmental flow between the Moon and the Sun, which is now heightened by the contact. Human consciousness often translates the need for transformation into sexual terms, and these points can be very ‘hot’ if there is an appropriate meeting of hearts and minds as well as a physical attraction. Notice I include hearts and minds. This point is not sexual in and of itself, but can be if the two people involved are able to affect one another on a deeper level. The ‘heat’ here comes from the need for psychological integration (which doesn’t sound very sexy but is tremendously intense, and at the root of all of our desire).
The person who owns the midpoint is the one who feels the energy most intensely on a day to day basis, though the person whose planet or point is making the connection can feel a maximization of that planet in the relationship–that planet is now highlighted in its influence. The activity will be enhanced when the degree experiences a transit or progression, and these times can be particularly volatile for a couple. This is why it’s better to have something soft there, the Moon or Sun or Venus, rather than Saturn or Pluto. Normally I’m all for the intense influences of the outer planets, but the Soli-Lunar midpoint is such a tender and yet electric place that often couples who have a harsher planet there find it too uncomfortable to tolerate on a regular basis.
I only consider conjunctions and oppositions to this point. While other aspects have influence, they are not so immediate. If the planet making the contact is an important one in the partner’s chart, it will have a strong influence on the relationship that might not be detected from other contacts between the charts.
The Soli-Lunar midpoint via secondary progression is something I find is absolutely vital to consider in any kind of chart interpretation. If the progressed chart is reflective of where we are now in our spiritual development (see The Progressed Chart Confusion), and the progressed Sun and progressed Moon are the major indicators of our soul’s growth, continually in movement and in changing relation to one another (read Dane Rudhyar’s book on the progressed lunar cycle), then the Soli-Lunar progressed midpoint indicates our spiritual ‘hotspot.’ The midpoint of the progressed Sun and progressed Moon can indicate major life events, or turning points, when they hit natal planets or sensitive areas of the chart. And of course, it is a crucial point in synastry, particularly in regards to transits and other progressed planets. If another’s planet or point hits the progressed midpoint, the impact is as strong as a connection to the natal chart, but they are not as long lasting. The relationship might be temporary, or the connection will indicate someone entering our lives. The midpoint of the progressed Sun and Moon moves fairly quickly, given that the Sun moves forward roughly one degree per year and the progressed Moon about two and a half degrees per month. The progressed midpoint is ever-changing, fascinating to watch, and will often have its greatest impact when it is within minutes of exact and triggered by the transiting Moon or Sun. It can be particularly explosive when the progressed Soli-Lunar midpoint moves to hit the midpoint of two planets that are conjunct. The conjunction will come alive in a way it never has before, and its influence may colour the life for a long time to come, even after the progressed midpoint is long past.
It’s important to note that contacts to the Soli-Lunar midpoint do not necessarily indicate deep relationships, and they bring no guarantees for the long term. It isn’t better to have one than not to have one. In fact, they can often make a relationship uncomfortable, because real growth pulls us out of our comfort zones, requires real change, and is never easy. It’s easy to get all Neptunian and start wishing for these connections, or seeking them out, but the truth is that, as compelling as they are, they’re useless unless we’re very willing and able to do the work at hand.