Never really acquainted with Yods, these past few months I have been exposed to a ridiculously high amount of charts with Yods. Whether it's with my clients, friends, celebrities, strangers, in my dreams, Yods became a central part of my life and, following the universe clues, I researched.
I started wondering if my sudden obsession for Yods meant I had one myself? Why was I so exposed to it? I found out my current solar return was composed by a Yod and my chart ruler is currently the fulcrum of a Yod by transit. My interest was definitely piqued, and thanks to the work of brilliant astrologers such as Sister Ray or Karen Hamaker-Zondag I built my own understanding of this pattern.
What are Yods?
Yods are formed by two quincunxes, pointing towards the same “fulcrum”, a third planet. The two planets shooting quincunxes towards the third are linked by a sextile. All within 3° / 3.5° orb maximum. The two planets sextile form a base, a strength. The third planet (fulcrum) receiving all the energy is a focus, a purpose; but there is an uneasiness about it, a stress, an anxiety, a restlessness. In order to understand why, we need to understand the quincunx. The quincunx in itself is extremely stressful, it's not as aggressive as a square, but it isn't less powerful. It's an itchy feeling, feeling inadequate, feeling clumsy, feeling separated and conflicted.
Having a Yod in your natal chart means that in this life, you feel compelled to achieve certain things, all your life seems oriented towards the same goal, there's a fire pushing you to accomplish something. And this something can be understood through the “fulcrum” planet and of course, the overall Yod and chart. A Moon fulcrum will be mostly motivated by becoming a Mother, a nurturing force -for her own children or for the children of the world-. A Uranus fulcrum is meant to revolutionize, a Pluto fulcrum wants to transform, and so on.
Now as we said, quincunxes are stressful, and therefore even if a Yod is called “a finger of God”, even if we say there is a fated aspect to it and you're meant to achieve something, it doesn't mean it will be done in all easiness and comfort. And that is why a Yod is formed by quincunxes and not trines. First, the fulcrum receives not one but two quincunxes. It is so stressful that the energy of the fulcrum planet can be completely exacerbated. It gives children (and later adults) who express the qualities of the fulcrum planet to the fullest of its capacities, (extremely Lunar, extremely Uranian) to the point that the family can become overwhelmed and fail to understand what the child is trying to express. Growing up the person keeps this feeling of being misunderstood and it will become both a uneasiness and a motor to grow.
Now each Yod holder will know a turning point in their life, and this point can be seen through the activation point. It is found in the mid-point between the two legs of the Yod. Let's say you have Pluto in Scorpio at 14° and Neptune in Capricorn at 14° (sextile each other). They are both shooting quincunxes towards a Moon in Gemini at 16°. This Yod activation point will be the exact middle between Pluto and Neptune, which is 14° Sagittarius.
You want to look in the transit chart, and look for a conjunction of Pluto, Neptune, Uranus, Saturn, or Jupiter to this particular point. When one of these planets form a conjunction to the activation point, the Yod is activated and therefore even stronger in the person's life. Depending on which planet light it up, you will get more information as to “how” the Yod will be lit up.
What happens when the Yod is activated? A feeling of complete despair, a feeling of being lost, depressed, stuck, hopeless. This is valid for a natal yod or a transit yod. It isn't fun, and lots of things can be extremely deceiving during this period. What is actually happening is, you, growing a lot during this time and integrating lots of lessons without even realizing it. The more you try to fight it and try to achieve some things despite having clear signs from the Universe this is not happening, the harder it is. The only thing required from you at that moment is to stay still and watch for the clues the Universe sends you. During this crisis things may seem meaningless and unfair, but every Yod holders needed this crisis to realize the great things they eventually achieved. Once the Yod is activated, it will periodically be activated over and over by a conjunction of a slow planet to one of he 3 founding planets of the Yod. Each transit will reactualize the Yod and put it under a new perspective, under new challenges.
Yod common facts
According to the current literacy on the subject and my own experience on it, there are a lot of common points between the lives of Yod holders.
The first is “the turning point”, the activation. Some are conscious of it, some aren't, but in the Yods I have seen, something happened at some point that made the person reroute their life completely and get closer to what the fulcrum planets symbolizes.
Second, there is a huge stress, a huge restlessness. Often the person turns naturally towards Reiki, alternative healing therapies and spirituality to calm this pain and uneasiness they feel. It's as if they felt like their soul was cut in several parts and they had to glue the parts back together. Third, there is a risk to feel completely overwhelmed and/or obsessed with the fulcrum planet qualities.
Although a Yod does signify a focus, there is a possibility to become irrational about it, not being able to let go of some ideas and even become irrationally involved in some religious movements.
Yods attract Yods. It's usually a family pattern and you can trace back the fulcrum planet as a dominant in your relatives charts.
Overachievement is common
Later on in life there can be a complete separation between who the person was and who the person becomes. Someone who was in finance their whole life becomes involved in humanitarian careers, someone who was extremely traditional decides to embrace new age spirituality. You can of course follow it through the transits to the Yod.
The Yods by transit
Finally, and that is quite interesting, anyone can have a Yod by transit, creating the same conditions as a natal Yod. If you have a sextile in your chart (within 3 degree orb), every time a planet transit the 150° apart, you have a quincunx by transit. Equally, if you have a quincunx in your chart (within 3°) every time a transiting planet comes to a sextile to it while being 150° from the natal planet, you have a Yod. The Yod is also possible if two transit planets happen to form a Yod with a third natal planet. The Yod is also possible with progressed planets.