In Yods, I explained and analyzed the traditional Quincunx–Sextile–Quincunx yod, which is often called “the finger of God” because it has peculiar energy that people often feel is “fated.” In this post, I’ll explain the energies of quintile yods, which have a similar shape but are even narrower. Quintile yods are formed when two planets (or points/angles) are quintile each other (72°), and both are biquintile a third planet/point (144°).
Quintile yods, sometimes called golden yods, are a different animal, but they have in common with normal yods (quincunx/sextile) that they create driven energy that builds on itself, and they often have the same issue of the planets they connect sitting in signs that have nothing in common. Unlike normal yods, though, they are joined by a quintile at the base and biquintiles on the (long) sides, and the (quintile) fifth harmonic adds a distinct character to their energy.
I have a very tight quintile yod, so I have lived with it more than fifty years. Its energy is quite different from the normal yod’s. I explored quintile energy in Decoding Quintiles, so here I want to emphasize the joy and creativity element of quintile energy.
I think that one facet of normal yods that Hamaker-Zondag did not emphasize explicitly enough is how the inherent contrast in the energies of their angles adds a characteristic dynamic to their energy: sextiles are opportunity but they are wet-blanketed by the two quincunxes, and this adds another dimension to the incompatibility of their energies. Many quintile yods have the same incompatibility of their planets’ signs. Mine do, but quintiles and biquintiles are of the same harmonic, so I suspect this overrides some of the incongruous energies that the signs of their planets produce.
Joy and creativity change everything because they change the context of experience. I have eleven quintiles and biquintiles (all with orb ≤ 1.5), so my experience goes beyond the yod. All is not roses with quintile energy because it is driven, a kind of passion. It can be a lot to handle. Mars biquintile Pluto, for example, is creative, but its joyous element feels more grim; it serves the drive to survive and to practice extreme self-sufficiency (Pluto). But it has the biquintile’s limitless energy and drive. Its joy is the joy of determination and survival hacking.
Of course, the most famous quintile yod I’ve seen referenced is Adolf Hitler’s. Creativity can serve many ends.
Quintile yods are engines of creativity and energy that build on themselves. The other thing about them is that natives are not really aware of the significance of their energies. Quintiles carry that trait; natives just assume that the energy is normal or nothing special, although other people notice it. It often indicates a special talent for creating order of things, and for learning and teaching.
Quintile yods have a lot of energy that is self-perpetuating, and they are taken for granted by the people who have them. Some writers describe quintile energy as “compulsive,” and I think that varies with the planets they connect. Quintile yods are engines of energy that one cannot ignore. Quintiles are the itch one has to scratch. Let’s see how they work through an example.
In this quintile yod, Mars retrograde in Scorpio is quintile Neptune retrograde in Virgo, and both are biquintile Venus in Aries.
Mars expresses very strongly in Scorpio as it is its traditional ruler. It is much more calculated and strategic than normal and can easily be drawn into Plutonian interests. It is given to intensity and can become obsessional. It is quiet, premeditated, and willing to be patient to get what it wants. It is very tenacious and is not easily deterred. Its energy tends to fixate on its object, and it won’t let go even in situations in which cutting bait would be the best option. Mars retrograde in Scorpio gives the native a rich inner life in which she is struggling with her ambitions and desires. Her ambitions can alienate her from other people.
Neptune in Virgo is a very different energy. Neptune itself symbolizes irreality. It recognizes that “truth” is relative, that anything might be true or untrue, that everything is an illusion. Unlike Uranus, which is above earthly structures but still preoccupied with them, Neptune is the bridge to nether-realities. Hence its associations with vision, illusions, fantasy, deceptions, and all forms of reimagining things. (It is none of those things really; they are human attempts, from a human point of view, at trying to explain an energy that is largely beyond human imagination). Another key part of Neptune’s energy is its focus on the universal rather than the individual. Neptune can guide us in developing strong ideals although these are often impractical on Earth. To work with Neptune energy, one has to detach significantly from earthly thinking.
In Virgo, Neptune energy is constrained (to say the least!). Virgo is a very uncomfortable place for Neptune because Virgo is earthly and practical and very driven to get its mundane facts right. Virgo’s drive stems from its need to avoid mistakes. It tends to be modest, constrained, diligent, and very “detail-oriented.” You can imagine how strange this placement is. Neptune’s universal consciousness is constrained and tends to focus on Virgo’s concerns, healing, health, service, repairing. Neptune retrograde adds even more special effects as the native is sensitive to “otherworldly” and futuristic visions. The native is preoccupied with her imagination and its contrast with earthly limits; she may have the unusual ability to take Neptunian vision and make it practical, but just as likely she may get lost between realities and struggle with what is “real.” Retrogrades often indicate involvement with past lives, and this is even more likely with Neptune. The native could be preoccupied with creating a vision.
Venus in Aries is another uncomfortable placement because Venus itself signifies our ability to attract and relate to other people, beauty, and things of value, including money. It rules Libra, which sits opposite Aries. Aries is ruled by Mars, which symbolizes our ability to get what we want and need. It’s all about action and thinking “me first,” when it thinks at all. Venus is focused on relationships with others. In Aries, Venus expresses with uncharacteristic egocentrism, impulsiveness, aggressiveness, and abruptness. It approaches relationships impulsively and probably with a competitive tendency. It gets frustrated and angered easily. All this said, it has vibrant, sassy yang energy that is focused on action.
Let’s take this in for a minute. This quintile yod brings together energies that don’t seem to go together in any way. I’ll take the quintiles one by one. Then we can derive the energy of the yod.
Mars quintile Neptune is the base of the yod. Quintiles indicate persistent, intense energy for creativity and learning. Mars in Scorpio adds significant intensity to the connection, and Neptune in Virgo, although its full imagination is limited, is also driven (Virgo). Taken together, the native probably is preoccupied with her inner vision and ambitions, and the quintile imparts Mars–Neptune with self-perpetuating energy. Neptune/Virgo can express in varying ways, but the native is likely to be focused on some kind of struggle between vision, dreams, and practicality. Mars has its preoccupation with desires and ambitions; as both are retrograde, the native has a “universe of thoughts” inside herself, and the quintile adds another level of determination to create some kind of order of it all. The most challenging part is that Neptune has no limit, so Virgo’s drive to order and organize is thwarted. So this quintile produces intense, dogged yin energy, quiet, deep, hidden, subtle, and strong. An ocean of energy.
Now the quintile’s energy gets channeled to Venus through biquintile circuits. Mars biquintile Venus is a very strong connection. Mars rules Aries, and, in Scorpio, it has a strong affinity with Venus in Aries, and vice versa. With these placements, both planets express as ambitious and competitive although Venus/Aries has little patience for depth and subtlety. Neptune and Venus normally have significant affinity, but in this case their signs introduce friction, and the planets don’t relate well at all. Venus/Aries has no time for Neptune/Venus’s visions unless it thinks it can achieve something with them—right now. And Virgo’s focus on earthly detail, service, and modesty tends to alienate Venus/Aries. This means that Mars/Scorpio is the intermediary. It has the patience to relate to Neptune/Virgo, and it speaks Venus/Aries’ language.
Venus is the outlet for all this quintile energy. In Aries, it is direct, competitive, and focused on the here and now. It relates to Mars more easily than Neptune. That said, Venus in Aries has limited patience for the internal prognostications of Mars and Neptune, but it cannot avoid them; it is the outlet of the yod and must express its energy. This might take many forms, for example, enjoying sparring with people and enjoying being unfathomable. The quintile yod’s energies are multiple and varied, so the native will have to plumb her own depths to know her self. With Venus/Aries, she might enjoy attracting people and inviting them to “figure her out,” subsequently enjoying their inability to do so.
Venus’s expression is powered by multiple levels of imagination and limitless energy. The yod’s creative energy, which draws from such divergent and varied sources, is a lot to handle, but the native can learn to focus it for a mind-bending range of endeavors. For example, she could be involved in moviemaking where Neptune/Virgo and Mars/Scorpio could contribute imagination, vision, and drive. Venus/Aries is not known for deep imagination, but this native has it in spades. Quintiles carry the element of creativity to what they connect, so natives experience even difficult connections like Neptune/Virgo and Venus/Aries with a kind of zeal, even if they aren’t aware of it. People with quintiles have a characteristic lack of awareness.
The main challenge of this yod is that its energy is undeniable and strong. It can give the native rare talent but the Neptune–Mars quintile fuses ambition with imagination that she probably finds hard to harness. She may find it hard to perceive the energy, to take it seriously. She may vacillate between blustery confidence in her vision and loathing it because she feels it is only a dream.
Harnessing the Yod
If I were counseling this native, I would support her in getting in touch with each planet’s energy as a first step. Yods fuse and focus the energies of the planets involved, so it takes a while to isolate each body’s energy, so you can recognize how each works. Of course, the whole journey has to meet the native where she is right now. The base of the yod does have an element of patience, so the native could have the determination to dive into the yod. I would appeal to Mars/Scorpio because it has the patience to deal with the energy.
Although Venus/Aries is the outlet, Mars/Scorpio is the key to using this yod. I would help native use that energy to work with the yod.
Most people find it immensely liberating to understand their energies; they often experience it as a release of sorts. They understand why they are so different; they can understand their energy, often for the first time. These patterns explain profound things about them that they’ve long struggled with but couldn’t quite touch, and such is likely to be the case here. This step would include looking at her life patterns and noticing how the energies have played out, and how they are presenting in her life now.
The second step is recognizing how the quintile and biquintiles work. She could have a revelation by recognizing her loathing of unrealistic dreams while simultaneously generating them nonstop. This can help her validate and honor the different parts of her self. When she does this, she can start channeling the yod’s energy with much more purpose. She can learn to release the frustration and friction of the yod.
Of course, as her counselor, I would parse each planet’s energy and connect with the one that was most dominant that day. Our interaction itself, as much as the explanation, can help her reframe her relationship to her own energies.
I hope this post opens your eyes to the unique energy produced by quintile yods. For simplicity I discussed the yod in isolation; in real life, though, there are myriad other planetary connections to consider that affect how the native experiences her yod’s energy. And houses add exciting specificity to the interpretation.