Helios on Salome: Okay, so we’ve all done things that we aren’t proud of. Whether its a drunken weekend in Vegas, cheating on your significant other, driving to Boston on a whim and a literal pound of weed and coke with your dealer/boyfriend and your best friend and his boyfriend… But at least you never had to seduce your father and have him kill a guy who you never even met, just to make your mom happy like this week’s asteroid!
The Astronomy: 562 Salome is a minor planet orbiting the Sun that was discovered by German astronomer Max Wolf on 3 April 1905 from Heidelberg. It is a member of the dynamic Eos family of asteroids that most likely formed as the result of a collisional breakup of a parent body. Salome has an orbital period of 5.24 years (1915 days) and an eccentricity of 0.10043 with an absolute magnitude of 9.95.
The Myth: Salome was the daughter of Herod II and Herodias. According to the New Testament, the daughter of Herodias demanded and received the head of John the Baptist. According to Josephus, Salome was first married to Philip the Tetrarch of Ituraea and Trakonitis. After Philip’s death in 34 AD she married Aristobulus of Chalcis and became queen of Chalcis and Armenia Minor. Salome has become a symbol of dangerous female seductiveness.
According to Mark 6:21–29 a daughter of Herodias danced before Herod and her mother Herodias at the occasion of his birthday, and in doing so gave her mother the opportunity to obtain the head of John the Baptist. Even though the New Testament accounts do not mention a name for the girl, this daughter of Herodias is often identified with Salome. According to Mark’s gospel Herodias bore a grudge against John for stating that Herod’s marriage to her was unlawful; she encouraged her daughter to demand that John be executed. Mark’s account (6:21–28) reads:
“A convenient day arrived when Herod spread an evening meal on his birthday for his high officials and the military commanders and the most prominent men of Galilee. The daughter of Herodias came in and danced, pleasing Herod and those dining with him. The king said to the girl: “Ask me for whatever you want, and I will give it to you.” Yes, he swore to her: “Whatever you ask me for, I will give it to you, up to half my kingdom.” So she went out and said to her mother: “What should I ask for?” She said: “The head of John the Baptizer.” She immediately rushed in to the king and made her request, saying: “I want you to give me right away on a platter the head of John the Baptist.” Although this deeply grieved him, the king did not want to disregard her request, because of his oaths and his guests. So the king immediately sent a bodyguard and commanded him to bring John’s head. So he went off and beheaded him in the prison and brought his head on a platter. He gave it to the girl, and the girl gave it to her mother. When his disciples heard of it, they came and took his body and laid it in a tomb.”
Why She Matters: Now there are two ways to look at this, and they may not be mutually exclusive. In popular culture, Salome has endured as being one of the first major Femme Fatales out there; an empowering figure of feminine power over the ineptitude of men, but as I’ve tried to repeatedly point out, it wasn’t her idea at all. The way it all plays out is highly reminiscent of Kim Kardashian and the sex tape that launched an empire. This driving force behind it, of course, being the momager Kris Kardashian, managing the various talents of her daughters who she wields like weapons in a male-driven, sex-obsessed culture. Salome is used very much like the Kardashian girls by her driven mother. She is a girl, coming into her sexual identity, and that takes its toll on the one being used. In addition, there is the dance that she performs: The Dance of the Seven Veils. The dance is playing out the story of Inanna descending into the underworld: She arrives covered in all the finery and layers she can put on. She gets stopped at each gate of Hell (where there was presumably TSA, because of course there would be- it’s Hell!) and she removes a layer of furs, silks and jewels at each gate, until she arrives at the throne of her sister, naked and indignant. From there Inanna whines to her daddy to let her destroy the world over a boy, but that is a different story all together. The main part is, the dance Salome dances is directly tied to Inanna, and the fertility ritual, descent into the underworld to allow new life… and to be naked for your father and a hundred of his closest friends I guess.
So what does Salome mean in the chart? Obviously as a culture, the west still has issues with women fully embracing, living and owning their power. Salome highlights that, and the abuse of said power to get what you want. She also represents being a tool for others’ actions and ambitions, used instead of honored. As an outside force, she can represent a chaotic attraction, or a wild card player that comes in out of the blue and whose wants and needs directly conflict yours- and you lose out because of their influence. Salome can also be incredibly empowering, as a truly realized feminine force, aware of her own power and using it judiciously, rather than letting others control her or letting it consume her.
To find out where she 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 562, for Salome. Once you have it entered, generate the chart! Where does Salome affect your life? Let us know in the comments below!