• Basha

Seasons of the Savannas: Astrology of The Lion King PART 1

Updated: May 19, 2020

Welcome back Astro-readers! Today we are picking up right where we left off & finally diving into Part 1 of our first modern storytelling project!

Through this writing series, I will be deciphering the Astrological symbolisms of The Lion King movie, both through analysis of the seasons, the celestial bodies/planets, as well as the story's characters/archetypes.

So, without further ado, let's get to it!

Once upon a time,

in a faraway land

there once lived a baby lion cub...


This Part 1 piece is all about the "faraway land"/setting of our story & the different sasons that occur throughout the movie.


Set in the African savannas of Kenya, The Lion King is truly a timeless tale - rich with symbolisms of nature's cycles. When I say timeless, I don't just mean it as a compliment, I mean it literally - viewers of the movie actually have no idea what "year" the events are occurring.


Timeless tales, no matter how modern, are extremely similar to ancient Pagan mythologies. Afterall, what else is the story of Simba, Mufasa & Scar, but the tale of a royal coup? An attempt on the King & Prince's lives by a jealous, yet ambitious, royal member next in line... Many even suspect the movie to be based on Shakespeare's Hamlet, due to this recurring symbolism.


Both mythological and timeless tales tell the same genre of stories - symbolic archetypes & events - that are cyclical. There are certain situations and personalities that seem to be constantly occurring over-and-over again throughout different cultures & different points in history; whoever is able to capture them into a story, has successfully created a timeless tale/mythology of their own. It is my belief that the writers and creators of The Lion King have accomplished this extraordinary storytelling feat.


However, we are now presented with a bit of an Astrological technical difficulty: How are we supposed to analyse the placements of the 10 planets throughout the movie, if we don't even know where they all are?


Truthfully, we have actually made things quite easy for ourselves. Forget about analyzing cultural influences on Simba's generation (aka, the outer planets' placements). The great thing about a story set in the wilderness, with animals as characters, is that there are no major generational discrepancies to be analyzed. The only external influences we are looking for, are that of mother nature. The lions of the Pridelands observed natural changes a bit more simply, just as ancient humans did; through the sun, the moon, and the yearly seasonal cycles.


Again, in this piece, we will be focusing more specifically on understanding the seasonal cues presented throughout The Lion King movie.


SEASONS OF THE SAVANNAS

Though the verbal storytelling of the Lion King lends no hints to the changing of the seasons, the aesthetically striking film provides ample visual cues. Just by taking hints from the magically animated scenery, we can try to guess the current seasonal phase of the Pridelands. But first, we must understand the yearly weather trends of the Kenyan Savannas - the source of the Pridelands' inspiration.


According to Travel Discover Kenya, the eastern-African country really only has 2 seasons; dry and wet. Even with this slight variance, the African Savanna tends to run quite hot year-round. This is due to the fact that Kenya is one of the few countries in the world located exactly along the equator - giving it a similar climate to Malaysia, Indonesia, Brazil and Ecuador (literally Spanish for equator).


Long Rains of Spring

March, April, and May bring the Pridelands it's first wet season: the "Long Rains," of Pisces, Aries & Taurus months. On an almost daily basis during this season, the African Savanna experiences heavy downpours for hours at a time . Though the showers seldom last the entire day, the large & dense clouds linger in the sky - making these months mostly overcast, and extremely humid.


Drawn-Out Dry Summer

Kenya's summer takes place over 5 months - June, July, August, September, and October - making it the longest & driest season of the Pridelands. During the zodiac months of Gemini, Cancer, Leo, Virgo & Libra, the skies are almost always clear & the sun is always shining. There are still a few showers that fall during these months, but they are far & few between, and usually only occur at night.

The sun still "falls" to it's equinox path in September/Libra [the month which traditionally brings Autumn in the north], resulting in decreased amounts of daily sunlight. However, when it comes to climate and weather, this event brings no real seasonal change to the dry and sunny days of Kenya.

It should be noted that, due to the lack of clouds and humidity, Summer in Kenya can feel like the coolest season of the year.


Short Showers of Fall & Dry Spells of Winter

The months of November, December, January & February bring the Kenyan Savanna it's second-set of wet & dry seasons.

During Scorpio and Sagittarius months, light-showers fall for short amounts of time during the night hours. Unlike the Pridelands' spring showers, these rains don't occur on a daily-basis - they only take place during half the days of the season, making their nature very sporadic & unpredictable.


During the months of January & February, a short dry-spell takes place in the Savannas. Capricorn & Aquarius months still bring some short-showers to Kenya, but they are much less frequent.


Western Writers, Central African Setting

After contemplating the seasonal cycles of the Pridelands, it can be obviously noted that they differ significantly from the seasonal cycles represented by the western zodiac. In Egypt, Greece, Rome, and most parts of America, one can experience 4 different seasons - a core principle behind the theories of Western Astrology.


So if the Pridelands' season don't align with exactly with the seasons of the zodiac, can we even move forward with our analysis? It's a bit of a contradiction, but one I believe we can navigate.


I truly believe that since Simba's story was written by three (very white) westerners, we can find that western-influence in the story telling.

Meaning that, even though the seasons of Kenyan wilderness don't look exactly the same as those of the northern-hemisphere, the core events and archetypes are still those of a "western hero legend." Therefore, we can still apply Astrological concepts to The Lion King's symbolisms.

As for using the seasons as storytelling cues, they can still be identified & placed along critical points of the zodiac.

For example, instead of looking for snow to mark the symbolisms of the winter solstice, we will look to the Kenyan Savannas for hints of the short-wet season (December/Sagittarius) transitioning into the short-dry season (January/Capricorn).


Similarly, to identify the summer solstice, we can try to find a scene when the thick overcast skies of spring (May/Gemini), transition into the clear blue skies of summer (June/Cancer)...


With that last major hint, I would like to conclude this writing piece. We have successfully identified the seasons of the African Savannas & established them along the zodiac. Now, we are ready to dive into the first scene of The Lion King move:

THE CEREMONY...


until next time, my Astro-readers,

Basha


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