To put it simply: one must be a Nevadan to understand Nevada in its entirety, or, as much as one can! Many people who visit our state wonder why people choose to live here; squatters choose to live miles away from the nearest form of civilization, while others live the American Dream as ranchers, or take up space sandwiched on tree-named streets in suburbia. Nevadans tend to be fixed in their ways, stubborn, and painted in pride from head to toe. It's safe to assume that the average Nevada enjoys finding different ways where to tell the world off. Nevada chooses to partake in odd or restrictive things that the rest of America cannot or will not do -- sex, drinking, gambling, and guns. America's oldest profession in the form of legal prostitution takes place just outside of Nevada's greatest cities, while drinking, gambling, divorce, and guns are permitted twenty-four hours of every day of the year. Nevada is famous for places that captivate people's imagination, places like Area 51, the sliding rocks of Bonnie Claire or the ghosts that walk the streets of the Comstock -- a place where true cowboys and rhinestone cowboys occur inseparably on a daily basis. Funny how that wide open space tells such a grand story.
It turns out that Nevada's fate was written in the stars. As told by David Toll in his excellent book, "The Complete Nevada Traveler," Nevada's Horoscope eerily describes our state to the exact truth. So if you ever wanted to 'understand' Nevada, I invite you to read on! You can either take Nevada's horoscope with a grain of salt, or you can delve right into an hypothetical abyss. Either way, you will be astounded!
On October 31, 1864, President Abraham Lincoln signed the act which created Nevada a state in the Union. As his pen touched the document, the Sun and the Moon were in the sign of Scorpio with her ruling planet Pluto set in midheaven. Thus Nevada is a double Scorpio with Leo ascending.
Scorpio is the most secretive and powerful section of the Zodiac. It merges the spiritual and the material. It is the world, the flesh, the Devil; and also the spirit which seeks to temper them. It is represented by the Scorpion (death), the Snake (wisdom) and Eagle (spiritual attainment). Scorpion, snake and eagle, symbols of Scorpio and abundant creatures of Nevada.
Dreams are an important channel between the spiritual and material worlds. Nevada has always been a peddler of dreams, rags to riches, boom or bust, the alluring promise of gold fields and the green felt of the tables. In no other sign do the forces of light and freedom so closely approach the forces of darkness and slavery.
The Sun in Scorpio rules Nevada's personality and outword behavior. The Moon in Scorpio rules its dreams and goals. Nevada, therefore, seems capable of living up -- or down -- to these aspirations. The whole nature of the state is fiercely independent, quite capable of telling the rest of the world where to get off, and solidly unwilling to let anyone tell it what to do.
Nevada has always tempted a person to ride the fine line. Anything goes, any time. This state will not be your stern father or your compassionate mother.
Mythologically, Pluto, the rich one, is rule of the Underworld and the underground regions of the earth. He wraps himself in a concealing cape and wears a helmet producing invisibility. Nevada is notorious as being a haven for underworld characters, from "Farmer" Peel in the 1860's to Baby Face Nelson in the 1930's. Well-known for being little known, Howard Hughes also sought obscurity in the folds of Nevada.
The subterranean occupation of mining is within the domain of Scorpio and Pluto, and the Moon in the fourth house indicates great wealth to back Nevada's independant attitude.
Scorpio: death and sex. Legal prostitution is an unusual facet in our state. We are not yet famous for death or dying, but they're working on it, as the architects of the MX missile system survey the valleys of eastern and southern Nevada. But Nevada is also the phoenix rising from the ashes. As important within the life cycle as sex, conception and death is the promise of renewal and resurrection... something else that Nevada is notoriously known for.
The rising sign, or ascendant, describes the outward personality and physical appearance of a person or place. Leo is a fire sign, ruled by the Sun, hot and dry like most of Nevada. Leo is a sign annoyed by smallness, ruling grand ideas and large-scale ambitions. (The abundant mountain ranges, vast deserts and great valleys of Nevada's 110,000 square miles keep this grand image clean.)
Black and shades of red are kin to Scorpio and Leo. Black and red dominate the motifs of casinos, gaming houses and Bunny Ranches throughout the state. Also the Moon and its node are in conjunction with each other, bringing a great deal of luck. Moreover, this conjunction occurs at the very nadir of the chart, at midnight, between the Sun and the Moon. No wonder that inside the state's casinos and whorehouses, midnight and noon are indistiguishable.
On Nevada's chart, Pluto is in opposition to the Moon. Pluto shares some of the nature of Mars, and something of a daredevil. Pluto is in conjunction with Mars in the Midheaven, both of which have a great deal to do with warfare. Thus, it is not surprising that Nevada was admitted to the Union during the Civil War ("Battle Born" is the state motto), nor that the nuclear bomb testing facility is here, the ammunition depot at Hawthorne and the nuclear waste storage facility that has been mandated for us. Our relationship to the rest of the nation is dominated by warfare (and its attendant death) rather than by what we do to support ourselves.
In the third house we see indications of close neighbors and relatives. In Nevada's case, with the Sun, Mercury and Saturn there, the suggestion is the close ties we have with Utah and California. The Mormon Church and the California tourist both exert profound influences on Nevada life.
Uranus is in conjunction with Mercury, activating our hopes and desires. The position of Uranus also suggests the Nevadans tend to be eccentric and individualistic. And the conjunction of Mars and Pluto in the midheaven suggests violent action of some kind. The image is of a tidal wave, clearly farfetched in our inland desert state, but the impression remains of a catastrophic event of enormous magnitude in Nevada's future.
Nevada's chart is that of a renegade state, proud and independent and well-fastened to its roots. Moreover, Nevada is a state that regulates progress on its own terms. She exemplifies the spirit of the Wild West despite the advent of the 21st century. She truly is "battle born."