Andrew J. Bevan, QHP, DMS Astrol. (c) 2009
The Via Combust and the Gift Box
The Via Combust or the 'Fiery Way' has in modern texts been defined as that part of the zodiac that lies between 15 Libra and 15 Scorpio, and the Moon played in this area of the sky has been described as causing hazard to travel. The term does more correctly refer to the area that is 15 degree wide and that stretches from 19 Libra and through to 3 Scorpio. These are those degrees that are opposite the exaltation degrees of the Sun (viz. 18AR56, see exaltations) and the exaltation of the Moon at 3 Taurus. The exaltation degree of the Moon is placed 15 degrees separate the exaltation degree of the Sun because it is at this distance she appears from under 'the Sun's Beams'.
The Dirty Way: 19 Libra - 4 Scorpio
While the Via Combust has traditionally been called the 'Fiery Way' (opposite the Sun's Beams), I suggest that it may be nick-named the 'Dirty Way'. It represents something that restricts, gets in the way or misguides the native and 'Makes you Swear'. The Via Combust is defined by the fall of the Sun and the Fall of the Moon, who are the celestial lights and represent the Eyes, thus the term 'Mud in your Eye'. From the Via Combust it is also possible we have the expression 'Break a Leg', which is more considered a encouraging well-wishing and pun with the contrary effect of accounting for unexpected happenings in advance of chancing avenues of exploration.
The Path of Fatigue: 4 Libra - 19 Libra
If the Via Combust IS a result of the opposition to a zodiacal measure of the Moon being 'Under the Sun's Beams', then there must be some equal debilitation in those 15 degrees prior to the fall of the Sun at 18LI56, thus stretching from 3 - 18 Libra. I know of no name for this area at present, but the 'Path of Fatigue' may do, as it may indicate reduced vitality, depression or submission. Planets within this area may prove weak or lack in robustness.
The Gift Box: 4 Scorpio - 19 Scorpio
This is the area that is opposite that part of the zodiac where the Moon is considered 'Vazarite', which is a term used by Al Birumi and describes the condition that occurs when a planet appears out from under the Sun's Beams and lasts until it is 30 degrees separate the Sun. This is akin to when a soldier is released from the peril of war of imprisonment. He has survived his enemy and no matter his condition he is due to a situation of happiness, celebration and rejoice. There is no other time that is more potent for a planet or when the significator is more likely to burst into an act of good deeds. This area of the sky, ie. 3 - 19 Scorpio, is therefore the 'Gift Box' where unexpected surprises or presents may come to surface. Check the discovery charts of the outer planets and you will find a planet in the Gift Box in every chart and the planet that is nearest to 15 Scorpio tells us something about the nature of what is about to enter into our conscious world, ie. into our awareness.
The Cursed Degree: 19 Scorpio
The 19 Scorpio is called the 'Cursed Degree' because it inconjunct the exaltation degree of the Sun. Beyond this point things fall outside the Box of Gifts and may prove a hazard. The final degree of the Gift Box cannot maintain its merit within the box as it is on the threshold to the next. Thus, the degree lacks in stability and reliability. Things often go wrong and matters do to end as intended. There maybe attraction but there are circumstantial events putting sticks in the wheels. It is an impediment and warning, and thus called - the Cursed Degree.