Asteroid Files: Inti

Helios on Inti– Have you ever ventured outside your comfort zone? And not like just the next county over, I’m talking about experiencing a culture that is so far outside your normal that you have to actively learn it and it leads you to question and change who you are? Well, have I got the asteroid for you….

The Astronomy– 9480 Inti is a main-belt asteroid, with an orbital period 5 years and 186 days at an average distance of 3.12 AU and an eccentricity of .1625 It was discovered on September 24, 1960. (Seriously, this is all I could find)

The Myth– Inti is the ancient Incan sun god. He is revered as the national patron of the Inca state. Although most consider Inti the sun god, he is more appropriately viewed as a cluster of solar aspects, since the Inca divided his identity according to the stages of the sun. Worshiped as a patron deity of the Inca Empire, Pachacuti is often linked to the origin and expansion of the Inca Sun Cult. The most common story says that he is the son of Viracocha, the god of civilization.

Inti and his sister, Mama Killa the Moon goddess, were generally considered benevolent deities. Mama Killa supposedly gave birth to their child. Their court is served by the Rainbow, the Pleiades, Venus, and others. The founding Inca ancestor, known as Manco Cápac, was thought to have been the son of Inti. According to an ancient myth, Inti taught his son Manco Cápac and his daughter Mama Ocllo the arts of civilization and they were sent to earth to pass this. Another legend, however, states Manco Cápac was the son of Viracocha. Inti ordered his children to build the Inca capital where a divine golden wedge they carried with them would penetrate the earth. Incas believed that this happened in the city of Cusco. The Inca ruler was considered to be the living representative of Inti.

Corresponding with the three diurnal stages of the sun, Inti’s identity is also divided into three primary subcomplexes, which are the father, son, and brother. The first of these is Apu Inti (“supreme Inti”). He represents the father and is sometimes known as “The Lord Sun.” The second is Churi Inti, or “Son Inti,” who represents the son of Inti and is often known as “Daylight.” The third and final division of Inti is Inti Wawqi (“Sun brother”). Inti Wawqi also represents the sun god in his specific position as the founding father of Inca reign and the center of the state’s official ancestor cult. In astronomy, Apu Inti and Churi Inti can actually be separated from one another along an astronomical axis. This is because they are associated with the summer and winter solstices respectively. Inti Wawqi, however, is not associated with an astronomical location.

Why He Matters– Okay so there really isn’t much to go on here. I’ll be honest, I picked this one because I needed a win and thought he’d be a slam dunk, but halfway through realized there’s not a ton going on. What we do have, however, is the reinforcement that the Sun is generally representative of what is Good and Right- an example to follow. If we expand on that we can follow the thread to a place of nationalism, and at its extreme, Xenophobia.

We live in a society. It’s become one of my favorite dumb meme responses, but it’s also true. The culture we are steeped in growing up shapes how we think, and what we are surrounded by reinforces that. Inti is a point in the chart where we are told a cultural myth about how to be and how to act, and expected to follow. Now, we can reject or question this, but that takes work. Breaking out of the society and the thought patterns we build our personality and values on; our ethics and morals- that all starts with the culture we are taught. Inti may not have the definition of other asteroids out there, but he doesn’t need it- he runs deep and is hella insidious. Now his influence is nearly always benign but, when introduced to a new and different culture than the one Inti takes for granted as Right and Proper, then the trouble emerges. This can lead to racial violence, hate crimes, homophobia, and to take it in a different direction, those who reject society to go be a hermit or live under a bridge. There may also be connections to figures in the dominant religion of the area or struggles with them.

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 9480, for Inti. Once you have it entered, generate the chart! Where does Inti affect your life? Let us know in the comments below!

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