Asteroid Files: Lucifer

– Lucifer. The name is instantly recognizable to anyone who grew up in a region where Christianity was the dominant religion. Even then, the name has transcended itself to become a symbol, representing lies, malice, and the enemy, furthering his infamy- But is this a reputation that Lucifer himself has truly earned? Let’s explore.

The Astronomy– 1930 Lucifer is a carbonaceous asteroid from the outer regions of the asteroid belt, approximately 34 kilometers in diameter. It was discovered on 29 October 1964. It is named after Lucifer, the “shining one” or “light-bearer” form the Hebrew Bible. It is part of the carbonaceous C-Group of asteroids. Lucifer orbits the Sun at a distance of 2.5–3.3 AU once every 4 years and 11 months (1,803 days). Its orbit has an eccentricity of 0.14 and an inclination of 14° with respect to the ecliptic. According to the surveys carried out by the Infrared Astronomical Satellite IRAS, the Japanese Akari satellite, and NASA’s Wide-field Infrared Survey Explorer with its subsequent NEOWISE mission, Lucifer measures between 27.00 and 39.61 kilometers in diameter, and its surface has an albedo between 0.05 and 0.1058. The Collaborative Asteroid Lightcurve Link derives an albedo of 0.0886 and calculates a diameter of 26.90 kilometers based on an absolute magnitude of 11.1 In October 2003, a rotational lightcurve of Lucifer was obtained from photometric observations by American astronomer Brian Warner at his Palmer Divide Observatory in Colorado. Lightcurve analysis gave a well-defined rotation period of 13.056 hours with a brightness amplitude of 0.44 magnitude (U=3). In January 2005, observations by astronomer Horacio Correia gave a concurring period of 13.054 hours and an amplitude of 0.22 magnitude (U=3). In 2013, another lightcurve was obtained at the Palomar Transient Factory (U=2), and a modeled lightcurve from various data sources, including the AstDyS database, gave another concurring period of 13.0536 hours and found a pole of (32.0°,17.0°).

The Myth– Right, so this is an easy one, which is greatly appreciated because the Wikipedia on him is miles long and im not bringing it here. So according to the Bible (the most referenced one being the translation of an edit of a translation of another edit of another translation of a compilation of an account of how things went by people who were several generations removed from the actual events) the God in question created everything, over the course of a week. One of his first creations was the heavenly host, aka the angels and archangels and all the other legions and orders. Chief among them all was the Archangel Lucifer- the Shining One, Beloved of God and the Star of the Morning. The usual story goes that when God created Humans, which were to be his greatest work, Lucifer refused to bend the knee to them, and was cast out of heaven for daring to rebel. Unfortunately, that is doubtful as to how it actually went. No evidence has been found of any ancient Canaanite myth of a god being thrown from heaven, as in Isaiah 14:12. The closest parallels with Isaiah’s description of the king of Babylon as a fallen morning star cast down from heaven are to be found not in any lost Canaanite and other myths but in traditional ideas of the Jewish people themselves, echoed in the Biblical account of the fall of Adam and Eve, cast out of God’s presence for wishing to be as God, and the picture in Psalm 82 of the “gods” and “sons of the Most High” destined to die and fall.

If you remove humanity from the equation, you are left with the concept of The War in Heaven, which repeats in theme all over the world- Except in Jewish tradition the rebellion fails miserably and the rebels are exiled. Think about that- With this perspective the Light becomes evil, the enemy; meaning that the “Hero”, or God in this case, is representative of the antithesis of Light aka Darkness. In every other tradition, Darkness is what you fear and is the enemy. The Bible attempts to correct this plot hole by shoving Lucifer and his followers (about a third of the heavenly host in most counts) into Sheol, aka Hell, another place of Darkness. Suspicious how God has access to such a place, and has power of it. Anyway, from there, Lucifer gets conflated with Shaitan or Satan (who is actually a figure in Islam before he ever comes to Judaism!) which is actually more of a title than a person- It was applied to Iblis, chief demon and satans are the assistants of those who disbelieve in God: “We have made the evil ones friends to those without faith.” Going back to Abraham and his sons Issac and Ishmael, the brothers who split over their religion and were the patriarchs of Judaism and Islam respectively, each of their gods would be a Devil in the other’s belief system. After all, as George R.R. Martin says, “A villain is a hero of the other side

In the Gnostic heresy, the God who created the material world is known as the Demiurge and is the true enemy as he prevents humanity from achieving gnosis, or enlightenment. In that tradition, Lucifer is sometimes viewed as a hero, the lightbringer come to bring humanity closer to true illumination, starting in the Garden of Eden with the serpent (who was not actually Satan, just a dick). Christian tradition teaches us that Lucifer (as Satan) is Lord of this world, and the Prince of Lies, but if we are being held captive by a malevolent force, just another generation of prisoners, then Lucifer is a Promethean figure, not a villainous one (Though Prometheus was a villain in Zeus’ eyes…). It is easy to see merit in this argument when you look at the corpses that God and Lucifer have left behind them- Lucifer has ten kills to his name, whereas God has roughly 2.5 million. Early Christian sources corroborate the enlightenment angle, giving Lucifer’s name to several bishops, applying it to John the Baptist, and even Christ himself! Obviously, there is more going on here than meets the eye.

Why He Matters–  Obviously there is a lot to work with here, the hard part will be narrowing it down. With asteroids, the main thing is that we have to go by the myth, and the name for their interpretation. This is exceedingly important in Lucifer’s case, as he is considered both Lucifer and Satan in the collective consciousness- So which one do we interpret for? Well… the answer is both. Whether we are talking Pre or Post- Fall, they both represent Lucifer. He is still the same no matter what shades that society paints him in. Lucifer can be counted on to rail against any system that keeps people dis-empowered or enslaved, and will not be quiet about it.

Lucifer will always try to bring light to the people, and that doesn’t always have to be against the authority- You find him prominent in the charts of prolific actors and musicians- the ones who become legends. Light is light, and we need to be entertained and inspired as well as enlightened- and those icons have a chance to reach more souls than almost anyone else.

To find out where he shows up in your chart, go to astro.com, put in your birth details and in the extended options, all the way at the bottom of the next page, there will be a menu of additional objects. Under that is a blank space where you can enter the number 1930, for Lucifer. Once you have it entered, generate the chart! Where does Lucifer affect your life? Let us know in the comments below!

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