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Yod (Double Quincunx; Finger of Destiny; Hand of God)

(religion, spiritualism, and occult)

A yod is a configuration involving at least three planets in which two of them form a sextile (60°) aspect and both then form a quincunx (150°) aspect with a third planet; hence, double quincunx is one of the several alternative names for this configuration. If lines were drawn to the center of the horoscope from all three planets, the resulting pattern would look like a capital Y—thus the name yod, which is the name of the tenth letter of the Hebrew alphabet and the letter that corresponds with the English “Y” (though, sometimes, with “I” or “J”).

The tenth Hebrew letter is an ideogram meaning “hand” or “pointing finger,” from which the other names for this configuration derive (finger of destiny, hand of God, etc.). The term “yod,” as well as the other, more dramatic names for the pattern, originated with Carl Leipert, a student of history and comparative religion. This configuration has been intensively studied by Thyrza Escobar and Dane Rudyhar.

A yod indicates a strange or unusual destiny. The interpretation often given to a natal yod is that it indicates a life that proceeds along in a certain pattern for a period of time until the established pattern is abruptly interrupted and the native is forced to proceed in a new direction. Often, though not always, the change has been prepared for, as in the case of an unknown understudy who on opening night must fill the shoes of the leading actor (owing to the latter’s sudden illness or some other unforeseen event). A yod is not necessarily benefic, in the sense that the interruptions in the life pattern that it indicates are not always pleasant. The disruptive changes foretold by the configuration take place when a transiting or progressed planet makes a major aspect, particularly a conjunction, with the planet at the “fingertip” of the yod. This disruption will be most keenly felt in the affairs related to the house (and, to a lesser extent, the sign) position of this focal planet, though there will also be reactions in the house and sign directly across the chart from the focal planet.


Brau, Jean-Louis, Helen Weaver, and Allan Edmands. Larousse Encyclopedia of Astrology. New York: New American Library, 1980.
Escobar, Thyrza. Side Lights of Astrology. 3d ed. Hollywood, CA: Golden Seal Research, 1971.
The Astrology Book, Second Edition © 2003 Visible Ink Press®. All rights reserved.
References in periodicals archive ?
In the search for an explanation of a secondary origin for the division-three medial yod, another factor has undoubtedly been comparisons of Chinese with cognate Tibeto-Burman languages.
In view of other evidence that suggests that the yod of the third division has a secondary origin, it makes better sense to see these forms as coming from a stage of Chinese independent of the Chiehyunn, in which a palatal medial had not developed in the forms cited.
In the Wang Renshiuh redaction of the Chiehyunn studied by Lii Rong (1957), there is a total of 3,633 distinct syllables; of these 52% belong to division three; that is, they are syllables containing a palatal medial or yod. Put in another way, there are more syllables in division three than there are in the other divisions combined.
Division-three syllables must, from a phonological point of view, be considered marked in comparison to those of other divisions, in that they contain an added feature of palatality manifested in the presence of a reconstructed palatal medial or yod. Yet when division-three syllables are examined from the point of view of frequency, it turns out that they are more common than all the other syllable types put together.
I propose that all Early Chinese syllables developed a palatal medial (or yod), along with a palatalized initial and generally a more palatal vowel, unless this process was somehow impeded.
Downer has shown that the yod after the retroflex initials *ts, *tsh, *dz, and *s is non-distinctive.