Asteroid 5143 Heracles


Asteroid 5143 Heracles is an Apollo asteroid, discovered on November 7th, 1991 by C.S Shoemaker. This asteroid has an erratic orbit, often spending a year retrograding through numerous signs, especially Aquarius through to Aries. Zane Stein has entered into a lengthy discussion regards this orbit, so I won’t repeat, simply link!


Heracles, the divine Hero of Ancient Greece, was the son of Zeus and Alcmene, the tallest, most beautiful and most wise of those born from mortal parents. The modern world knows his legend best as the Roman nameology of Hercules. Known for his brawn over brains approach to life, Heracles was a deeply passionate and compassionate soul, who adored athletics, children, loyalty and defending what was righteous to his intimate sphere. He was idolized for his strength, determination, courage and of course, admired by all for his sexual abilities. It was his victories in the face of extreme adversity that brought balance to the mindset of the populace. To worship and acknowledge the determination to be victorious was inspiration and hope.

As is life, where there is great love, there is often great hate. This came in the form of Hera, wife of Zeus. Despite the fact that Zeus fathered many children whilst married to the great Queen, it was Heracles that Hera despised the most, and she endeavored to torment him throughout the entirety of his existence.  The worst tale involves Hera sending Heracles insane, at which time, he murders his own children. At the order of the present King Eurystheus, the archenemy of Heracles, he was to complete the Twelve Labors to be expunged of his crime.

Straight from Wiki, here are the Twelve Labours:-

Not all writers gave the labors in the same order. Apollodorus (2.5.1-2.5.12) gives the following order:

  1. To kill the Nemean lion.
  2. To destroy the Lernaean Hydra.
  3. To capture the Ceryneian Hind.
  4. To capture the Erymanthian Boar.
  5. To clean the Augean Stables.
  6. To kill the Stymphalian Birds.
  7. To capture the Cretan Bull.
  8. To round up the Mares of Diomedes.
  9. To steal the Girdle of Hippolyte.
  10. To herd the Cattle of Geryon.
  11. To fetch the Apples of Hesperides.
  12. To capture Cerberus

Heracles successfully accomplished his labors, however, it was the battle with the centaur Nessus, that would lead to his ultimate demise.  Offering to carry Deianira, the wife of Heracles across the river Euenus, Nessus then threatens to steal her away. Seeing this, Heracles shoots his poison arrow at the trickster Centaur, ultimately killing him. As his last dying deed, Nessus removes his shirt, telling Deianira that it will drive her lover wild with passion if ever he should wear it. Years later, on hearing that there is a love rival for her husband, Deianira asks Heracles to wear the, unbeknown to them, poisoned shirt, thus killing Heracles.


To locate asteroid Heracles in your natal chart, head over to and input the number 5143 in the additional objects field. As he is a hero and we can all use a bit of hero worship in our lives, knock yourself out with the aspects and orbs. Just don’t get silly or extreme, like 10 degrees and what not.

As indicated by the mythology, asteroid Heracles in your natal chart, will indicate strength and courage, especially at times of adversity. As Heracles experiences a very eccentric orbit, rulership and retrograde motion, will be an important detail regards his influence in your chart. Think of keywords relevant to the sign of rulership and house position keywords as an indicator of where your main ‘battles’, ‘victories’ and ‘enemies’ will reside. Retrograde Heracles seems a little Sisyphus in expression, with lengthy battles not only with the external, but also with self – whilst a direct Heracles seems to indicate a more self confident individual in general.

When considering your natal Heracles, also take the time to search for relevance involving Hera.

In transit, activation of natal Heracles will indicate a time when you are to be courageous, strong in the physical sense and will no doubt feel called to battle. At this time, yet again, seek connections to Hera, for the possible source of added negativity,  – or Zeus/Jupiter, for positive support regards the issue.

Another important consideration for Heracles, especially when activated by transit, is the placement of the centaur Nessus – the bringer of his ultimate demise. Nessus is found in the additional objects column of the extended charts option at When activated, Nessus will indicate rumour, deception and possible downfall of a relationship/project.

Perhaps it is relevent, perhaps it is not, but when addicts attempt to surmount their addictions – they begin a Twelve Step program. It could well be a consideration that a transit activating natal Heracles is symbolic for a life period where you will endeavour to surmount your own twelve labors for success. Obviously, relevant cycles experienced with outer planetary aspects would be paramount to consider with this concept, if there is any relevance to be had at all.

Possible Keywords in regards to Heracles and his enemies:-

Heracles:- strength, courage, determination, ultimate masculinity, bravado, victory, challenge, bringer of downfall of others, revenge focus for others, jealousy from others, compassion, passion, lover and protector of youth, unbiased sexuality, enthusiastic lover, admiration, respect

Hera:- enemy, constant hurdle in path of Heracles, revenge seeker, jealousy

Nessus:- rumor, falsehood, deception, downfall, loss, toxic relationships relating to Heracles


Artwork – Peter Paul Rubens
© Karen Piscitelli


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