The Philosophy of Tea–or the Tee

Please note: In 2015, long after I wrote this article, my understandings of the quindecile, a 24° aspect, were born out of the new–mathematically accurate–name for the 165° aspect, now called undecaquartisextile. Please read about the Undecaquartisextile as its related aspect patterns which can be found in the Pluto – Full On series. You’ll find the Pluto – Full On series under the subcategory of Undecaquartisextile, located in the Feature Articles tab. Thanks for your patience with the modification of the name.

I don’t normally cover golf. I know nothing about the sport. But when a 21-year-old makes history like Jordan Spieth did on the 21st of June, it’s worth having a look at his chart–even the untimed one. The New York Times news alert came in that night and before I’d even opened the mail, I knew it was going to be about this guy I’d seen on CBS This Morning sometime back. They spoke about “if’ he did this and “if” he did that, enough to make me wonder about him. He seemed so polished and self-assured without cockiness and ego as his shield. If anything, there was a distinct humility about him that I liked.

Funny. I know nothing about golfers although I’ve noticed, with few exceptions, how all of them seem to possess this overall air of a quiet calm, a humble graciousness, a zenlike feeling surrounding them as if they’ve been raised in Asian cultures. The thought makes me amused, given Tiger Woods’ origins. He seems to step out of the usual mold into which golfers may be born.

I tried to understand even in the midst of seeing this sport as nothing more than people walking from one place to the next on a 9- or 18-hole green before taking one long rod with a small protrusion at the end and using it to hit a small white ball with little “pockets” as far as possible to the next hole. That is literally what I know about golf. Now please, golfers, don’t take offense to that. There is method to my madness in my having expressed myself in this way: Golfers, you are a breed unto yourselves, and somehow you seem to possess this incredibly intriguing composure.

So as I wondered about this kind of humility and aplomb, I read the words of Kakuzo Okakura: “Not a colour to disturb the tone of the room, not a sound to mar the rhythm of things, not a gesture to obtrude on the harmony, not a word to break the unity of the surroundings, all movements to be performed simply and naturally—such were the aims of the tea-ceremony. And strangely enough it was often successful.” The words, it seemed to me, could have been speaking about golf instead.

Almost immediately after the rod’s small protrusion connects with the white ball and the ball reaching its destination, the crowd gives a brief but audible breath of awe or disappointment. I’ve never heard more than that from the crowd or the players themselves. I can’t think of another sport that comes close to this kind of energy. Not even in chess where intellectual and strategic showdowns can be more about ego than the sang-froid of the golfer.

“He became the first male golfer since Gene Sarazen in 1922 to win multiple majors before his 22nd birthday,” the New York Times noted in the alert. Reason enough to have a look at the chart. Jordan Spieth has won both the Masters and the US Open.

Jordan Spieth - Youngest US Open winner in 82 yearsSpieth’s untimed chart presents the most amazing dynamics, including a pair of partile undecaquartisextiles from the Sun to the Uranus-Neptune conjunction, respectively at 3 and 18 minutes. Sadly, I can’t be sure whether his Moon is in Scorpio in conjunction to Pluto and in quincunx to Venus. It would be nice, but a Sagittarius Moon can be just as likely if for nothing else than the game of golf.

The undecaquartisextiles from Leo to Capricorn point to Spieth’s determined quest to achieve recognition and respect. But if ego is his motivation, I fail to see it. Then again, I don’t have a timed chart for him. So far, I’ve seen someone who appreciates the recognition but is willing to share the spotlight.

Mercury’s opposition to that Uranus-Neptune partile conjunction offers Spieth the opportunity to show a great but dry sense of humor while knowing perhaps instinctively when and how to say what. His presence of mind alludes to zen. Perhaps such a demeanor might be tied into a golfer’s philosophy, but it seems to be inherent to the subtle, Tao-related philosophy of the tea lover.

Lynda Hill‘s 360 Degrees of Wisdom: The Sabian Oracle [©Lynda Hill 2004] at Cancer 19, where Mercury sits in the chart, points to the blending of the old with the new in the following passage for this degree:


Commentary: ‘A Fragile Miss, Representative of Proud Old Blood, is Wed in a Marriage Ceremony by a Priest to an Eager Youth of the New Order.’ The ‘Fragility’ and respectability of the past is energized with the ‘Eagerness’ of the new. The two people marry, even though they come from quite different backgrounds. The ‘Old’ and conservative is “married” to the ‘New’ and ‘Eager’.

Oracle: A ‘Marriage’ of any kind can bring people together and produce wonderful things as a result. There comes a time when the ‘Old’ ways, ideas or behaviors need to be renewed with fresh ‘Blood’. But the old ways should not be merely replaced by updated methods, but rather blended to attain the best of both worlds. The important thing is what this union can produce. This is the birth of something with the potential for change, new ideas and new growth…”

Mars in earthy Mercury-ruled Virgo makes a tight trine to the Uranus-Neptune pairing while sitting in square to Venus in Mercury-ruled Gemini. I wish I could get the actual birth time so I could see the heartbeat of this chart!

Venus also forms a nice trine to Saturn in Aquarius. But Saturn here lends structure to Aquarian serendipity and unexpectedness. In mutual reception with Uranus, Saturn not only rules Capricorn but co-rules Aquarius. In opposition to Chiron in Leo, the charisma and sizzle in performance can again be more subtle but nevertheless still exciting.

Saturn sits at Aquarius 29 which points to Spieth’s entry to golf as a professional career. He is the newcomer:


Commentary: ‘A Butterfly Emerging From a Chrysalis’ is nothing less than a complete emergence into a new life and total transformation. It’s facing a whole new beginning and an entirely new life from what it has previously known. The ‘Butterfly’, after it struggles to ‘Emerge’ from its ‘Chrysalis’, takes a moment to stretch its wings and orient itself. It has shrugged off its ‘Chrysalis’ and is free to take flight when the moment is right.

Oracle: Like an awakening, you may feel that you are suddenly able to do something that truly reflects your inner self and what you’ve always wanted or meant to become. Things have been developing within you that reflect who you truly want to be…” [© Lynda Hill 2004]

When I started exploring the possibility of writing about this phenom, I never expected to find a link between golf and tea. To me, older golfers, away from the green, seemed to be in the cognac sippers category where they might be sitting in leather chairs in libraries heavily trimmed with thick, rich woods and Persian carpets. So I admit it: I have a vivid imagination.

But whether cognac, milk or tea are his choice of beverage, I’ll be surprised if Jordan Spieth is a one-time two-majors winner. Even without a timed chart, it seems like he’s going to be going places that will keep the competition on the green tough. Certainly his personality seems to fit in quite well with the other pros on the tour! He’s definitely one to watch.

Namaste, I love you.

©2015 Michelle Young