April 1 2019
Saturn and Pluto in Capricorn are awfully close to each other this month….! We are right in the grinding maw of this beast.
I think about these two planets all the time these days. Lest you think that I am obsessed, this meaty conjunction of Saturn and Pluto (when they are in the same place in the sky) is really the dominant influence of 2019. It will be exact in January 2020 and its influence continues to wane and wax next year. This occurs roughly every 35 years, and the process takes a few years. So yes, I reflect on it constantly now, seeking to understand global and local events through its prism.
As I have written before in these pages, Saturn and Pluto reflect a breakdown of systems and power structures. As systems become too heavy, too entrenched in their own stuff, they start collapsing of their own weight. When threatened by upstart forces of change, they hang on to what they have, using force, repression, and totalitarianism as tools. There is a relentless, grinding feel to it, and it’s scary.
Even I —a pretty irrepressibly optimistic Sagittarian—struggled this week to not feel run over by a truck by the relentless accumulation of bad news from one end of the world to the other.
But people all over are rising up. We know the systems aren’t working, and their abuses are being revealed. So there is resistance and positive change, dynamism and new ideas. As the resistance bubbles up more strongly, the pressure and weight of the abuses of power increase. It has become so obvious – whether we watch the US government’s draconian maneuvers or the trainwreck which is Brexit—that all these people care about is holding on to their power — the good of the country be damned.
One of the hard parts about Saturn and Pluto is the grinding, relentless quality to their action. It is easy to lose hope and become numb. We have to remember that the resistance can also be relentless.
Change takes a long time. Our challenge is to be clear-eyed and keep organizing.
So Mercury retrograde brought us the Mueller report, and everything about it has been shrouded in Neptunian smoke and mirrors
Mercury has been moving so slowly as it passed from retrograde to direct on the 28th that it has been parked with Neptune in Pisces for what feels like forever. This conjunction with Neptune continues into next week, emphasizing the part of Mercury Neptune that is slippery and unclear. We don’t know what the report means, and we don’t know what it says. Mueller didn’t indict nor did he exonerate. Attorney General Barr seems to know Trump’s inner motivations and “intent” but can’t explain how he knows. (It is important to note that Barr has been a pawn for executive misdeeds for a long time – he was the AG for Pres. George Bush Sr when he pardoned the politicos who engineered the Iran Contra crimes.) So yes, smoke and mirrors.
By April 9th the Aries Sun makes a 90 degree angle to the Saturn Pluto conjunction for about a week. Expect the beast to be provoked, and Saturn Pluto repression to be on display. By April 20 the Sun enters Taurus and partners up with Uranus for a few days of sudden events and turnarounds.
Stay strong. And Happy Earth Day.
Important April Dates
April 5 452 am New Moon @ 15’17 Aries
April 19 713 am Full Moon @ 29’07 Libra
April 20 456 am Sun enters Taurus, joins up with Uranus
Get ready for some changes!
April 22 Earth Day!
March 2, 2019
March brings inspiration and interconnectedness in the face of – and perhaps as our path through—the Saturn-Pluto scary stuff
Well. Who woulda thunk it? Just as Saturn gets closer and closer to Pluto, forcing us to look at the terrible consequences of humanity’s bad behavior, throwing us up against the stark awfulness of how we abuse power, here comes the month of March with so much delicious Pisces-ness, lifting up our capacity for healing and compassion and loving –kindness. Wow. This astrologer is kind of speechless – and those of you who know me know that doesn’t happen very often!
We have a lot to celebrate this month – Mardi Gras, International Women’s Day, the Spring Equinox, Purim. And St Patrick’s Day.
(I only grudgingly celebrate St Patrick: even though I am named after him I am mad at him, mad that he sought to eradicate indigenous spiritual practices from Ireland.)
However– I am celebrating Mercury retrograde in Pisces on March 5th, and the gorgeous and juicy and boggy New Moon in Pisces on the 6th which falls exactly with Neptune. This is all about universal love, healing, connection. Neptune in Pisces and Mercury retrograde in Pisces want us to know that the only
way out of this mess is to honor our interconnectedness. Mercury retrograde pulls us deeply inward, if we can let it, allowing us to draw on intuitive and non-linear knowledge. As Robin Wall Kimmerer, author of Gathering Moss: A Natural and Cultural History of Mosses (2003), and Braiding Sweetgrass: Indigenous Wisdom, Scientific Knowledge and the Teachings of Plants (2013) has said – and I am paraphrasing: all beings came to be on earth with instructions, and we humans have lost ours. The month of March will help us begin to find them if we tune into our internal compasses and stop being distracted by our newsfeeds. That’s what March has to offer: a chance to really read the signs and symbols to be able to heal this world and our crazy selves.
I am also celebrating Uranus entering Taurus on March 6th, where it will spend the next several years. Uranus in Taurus joins with Saturn and Pluto in Capricorn to help the Earth’s voice be very loud and insistent so that we have to notice what we are doing and have done to it.
Saturn and Pluto are helping us see our shadow side.
Yes, it is scary, but you gotta love Saturn and Pluto. This is one shadow we really have to see if we want to restore our sense of humanity and connection to the earth and to each other. And you have to love Uranus too. These planets represent the most dramatic and chaotic forces in the universe. Change always hurts.
I have been reflecting a great deal on this upcoming conjunction of Saturn and Pluto, trying to understand its significance. Will the presidency of #45 collapse in March or April or May? Will he declare martial law? Will the Uranus-Pluto conjunction in Michael Cohen’s chart bring down #45? Will there be even worse climactic events? Will there be a war between India and Pakistan, the US and Iran? What about Venezuela? It is easy to get completely crazed by this kind of thought process.
But I have come to see that Saturn and Pluto are not going to bring the end of the world. They simply represent the Zeitgeist, the sense of the times. We are all very aware of apocalypse, of systems breaking down, of our social structures and the earth itself being in great danger. This is the meaning of Saturn and Pluto. People are talking about the speed of climate change, about how our world is changing faster than we can imagine, that the earth we are leaving to the next generation will be far different from the one many of us know. Do I think Saturn and Pluto will bring crisis? I think we are in crisis, and Saturn and Pluto have just revealed to us that the water we are swimming in has reached a boiling level. The water has been boiling for a long time but many of us were not aware – whether we were not aware of environmental degradation or racism, we were not aware. Saturn and Pluto have just ripped away whatever shreds of denial we have been hanging on to. So that we have no choice but to see the worst of human behavior.
When that occurs, there is a tremendous opening. It is scary. It is messy. We don’t know what’s going to happen. But we are in that opening and will be for the next couple of years.
I am not going to engage in predicting an apocalypse. Instead I am predicting a transformation. Because as we see the shadow side we must also leave room to see the best in humanity, because it’s there too. We also have to see that the best in us is also possible. For example, the people of Toledo Ohio just voted that Lake Erie has rights, drawing on legal strategies based on how the Maori people have protected their ancestral lands and waters.
Interconnectedness in action — it is here. The planets this month make it more possible to see it and identify a path forward.
March’s important dates ( all times Eastern)
March 5 119 pm Mercury goes retrograde @ 29’36 Pisces
March 6 335 am Uranus enters Taurus
March 20 559 pm Happy Spring! Sun enters Aries!
March 20 943 pm Full Moon @ 0’09 LIbra
March 28 959 am Mercury turns direct @ 16’13 Pisces
February 2 2019
Yup. Have you noticed a certain feeling of global angst, on top of the big pile of uncertainty we are already experiencing ?
Saturn is approaching Pluto very quickly and we are all feeling it, a pretty big dose of dread and worry. It feels as though we might be heading for some kind of train wreck but don’t know if it is big or little, local or global, personal or collective.
All I can say is yes, things are uncertain. Yes, there is plenty to worry about. Yet, as Jeff Goldblum said in Jurassic Park, “Life finds a way.” Keep that in mind. Sometimes things have to break down before they can be rebuilt. When the volcano blows, for example, it creates a growing medium for plants that can only grow and flourish there. The goddess Kali brings some destruction to make way for life.
This is me, the ever optimistic Sag, being hopeful. (Really!) Change is difficult, and real transformation can be harrowing. But it is also juicy, sometimes unexpected, scary, and powerfully healing.
Speaking of healing– Happy Brigid’s Day, folks. The Brigid festival in Ireland, Feile Bride, is one of my favorite indigenous Irish holidays. It is a celebration of poetry and healing, of the fires of creativity. (Happy birthday to poet Langston Hughes. Happy Birthday Frederick Douglass. Happy Birthday Elaine Stritch and Stan Getz. And Rick James. They were all born on February 1st and 2nd.)
Speaking of healing, sometimes the poison has to come up and out for healing to occur. The poison is spewing everywhere right now. Bring on the healing.
So this pesky Saturn Pluto conjunction which takes place within the next two months brings the structures of our society – represented by Saturn in Capricorn—to a breaking point. It seems like the systems are so dysfunctional that they just have to break. It is scary, yet there is so much new life, new energy coming up quickly to replace the old structures, to replace the old dinosaurs. (Wow, that Jurassic Park thing again.) A Green New Deal, for instance…
Meanwhile the planets keep on doing their thing…. February is a pretty regular month, astrologically speaking! No retrogrades! No eclipses! And remember to that with the Sun in Aquarius most of the month, it’s a good time to have fun. No one appreciates fun like an Aquarian!
Important February dates (EST times)
February 4 4:05 pm New moon @ 15’45 Aquarius
February 18 605 pm Sun enters Pisces
February 19 1055 am Full moon @ 0’42 Virgo
Next month… we will start analyzing the birth charts of Democratic candidates and others…
January 1, 2019
Happy New Year! 2019 keeps our focus on the earth itself…. And on what we have wrought
Some thoughts on the year ahead… And on the upcoming Saturn Pluto conjunction in 2019 and 2020
Seriously – I have been giving it a lot of thought.
First, the low hanging fruit, as it were:
- this year, besides the usual three periods of Mercury retrograde, there are no other personal planets retrograde. In other words, Mars and Venus move direct all year.
- Uranus enters Taurus in early March and stays there all year
- Jupiter remains in Sagittarius til December (woohoo!)
And now for the big stuff…
Reshaping Power Structures: The 2019 and 2020 Saturn and Pluto Conjunction in Capricorn
In March 2019 Saturn gets very close (within 3 degrees) to Pluto in Capricorn, and it stays close into June, even after it starts to retrograde at the end of April. When I say “close” I mean an astrological conjunction, where the two planets operate as one, and their influence is magnified. By July they are still in spitting distance, just 4 degrees apart. Saturn keeps pulling away and it doesn’t approach Pluto again until the end of December 2019. The two planets spend the first few months of 2020 together, exactly conjunct on January 12, 2020.
This is a significant transit, personally and politically. This time, it has great global significance because it falls at 22 degrees Capricorn, which is a trigger point on the earth axis, so it affects the world itself. Additionally it has great meaning for the US because we are in the midst of our Pluto return as a nation, during which Pluto is passing through the house it was in at the US’s creation in 1776. I have mentioned this Pluto return before in my blog, and that it means the scab has been ripped off our core wounds as a nation. Our shadow side is utterly visible.
Pluto represents some of the most transformative energy in the universe, and in combination with Saturn it is no joke. Together with Saturn, we can see either intense repression or powerful restructuring, or both. Because these planets are in Capricorn, their influence will definitely play out in the structures of our society, and also on the earth itself, especially with the additional transit of Uranus through Taurus, another earth sign. All this earthy energy will put the impact of the degradation of the environment front and center.
Whatever the outcome, Pluto brings to the surface an inexorable force for change, challenging Saturnian structures. As astrologer Maurice Fernandez writes (quoted by https://mauihawaiitheworld.wordpress.com/2016/11/20/future-predictions-when-saturn-conjuncts-pluto-in-2020/):
“…This meeting of forces represents, among other things, the redistribution of power in the world or, in other words, which faction will make the decisions that affect the greater collective, whether this occurs in plain sight or behind the scenes..”
Deep breaths, everyone. In thinking about what this transit could mean for our world, I was inspired to take a walk through history, to see what was going on during other Saturn Pluto transits. Please don’t freak out.—it’s pretty heavy. So when you look at my historical list of Saturn Pluto events that include war and state repression, also look for the organizing, the resistance. Because it’s there. That is the other meaning of Pluto, the ferocious will to transform that manifests in irrepressible social movements.
Here is what I found:
> 1780’s, conjunct in Aquarius
genocide of Indigenous people in US, French revolution, US constitution ratified, enshrining the 3/5 compromise which rendered people of African descent only part-human for political representation purposes.
> 1914—conjunct in Cancer – World War I
Need I say more?
Conjunct in Leo –post World War II Marshall Plan, creation of the CIA, Department of Defense, the Military-Industrial complex, creation of the UN, creation of state of Israel, the split of North and South Korea, India and Pakistan. Joe McCarthy and the persecution of organizers, artists, and communists — and all kinds of other people–by the House Un-American Activities Committee.
Saturn- Pluto opposition — uprising in the African-American community of Watts in Los Angeles. Vietnam war.
Conjunct in Libra– Falklands war, IRA bombing campaign against England, Margaret Thatcher’s repression of Irish civil rights. Anti-nuclear movement organizing, Greenham common protest of Cruise missiles, AIDS crisis
Saturn-Pluto opposition —-9/11 attack on World Trade Center and Pentagon, and subsequent repression of Patriot Act, creation of Homeland Security Dept.
Saturn Pluto square. Affordable Care Act enacted
What does this mean for us?
We are already in a period where the question of who is controlling the resources and how those decisions are made is at issue. We are living in a period when the structures of “business as usual” are so deeply dysfunctional that more and more people say the system has to break down before we can rebuild. Saturn and Pluto will help push change forward, building the pressure needed to make some serious change which will culminate in 2020. We don’t know what repressive power will be used against people but we all can – and should– expect that it will.
I believe that is what Saturn and Pluto signify, a confrontation with and reconfiguration of power and systems. We are at a breaking point in terms of the earth and in terms of how our body politic functions. We are at a breaking point in terms of climate change and Saturn and Pluto and Uranus will make that more obvious.
It has become so clear that many systems in our world only work for the few. The culture of extractiveness – on the level of environment, racism, misogyny, and capitalism may be crashing under its own weight. It is also crashing down because people are organizing.
How will systems respond to the demand for change from the grassroots? How will the Saturnian rules of governmental decorum behave when challenged by the new and more radical energy of young people, people of color, and women and queers who take their seats in Congress this week?
We will see! Change is always messy—it is never easy. We have to be strong and be ready for some breakdowns. We have to make change wherever we can. We have to keep up the self –care and yoga, too. The planets this month of January give us plenty to work with so that we can make daily, important changes.
The month ahead
January is heavy with Capricorn energy—as it would be, with the Sun in that sign til the 20th. But it is much more than the Sun this month. Saturn is in Capricorn, its home sign, and paired up with the Sun today and for the next few days. January 5th brings a Capricorn new moon and partial eclipse. Mercury enters Capricorn on the 5th. Pluto is in Capricorn. The Sun reaches it by the 9th and spends a few days there.
So what is all this Capricorn-ness about?
Capricorn is an earth sign, and as such, it has to do with the material plane—our earth, our bodies, what we do with ourselves in a concrete way, what we manifest. So it has to do with moving ourselves and our lives forward, like the mountain goat that is its symbol, climbing ever upward.
Capricorn is practical, earthy, prudent, careful, authoritative. It is ruled by Saturn, the planet of manifestation, of structure. Structure in a Capricornian sense includes our physical structure (our bones), the structure of our lives (work, home, relationships), and the structures of society.
This month—or the first 3 weeks of it—has a heavy Capricorn and Saturnian emphasis, beginning today with the Sun-Saturn conjunction in Capricorn. This is a heavy week and we all know it, whether our concern is the environment, racial justice, the government shutdown, immigrants and refugees, gun violence, the rise of right wing nationalism the world over, or whatever issue… Things are serious. Keep in mind, however, that another quality of Capricorn – and Saturn—is timing. I think all the earth signs have it but Capricorn especially since Saturn is all about time and about ripeness, about waiting for the right moment. (As a Sagittarian with no earth in her chart, I have so much trouble waiting for things! Ripeness? Are you kidding?!)
So Capricorn bides its time.
This is going to be an interesting couple of weeks! Not only is the Sun sitting with Saturn but they also both oppose Kronos, a planet used in the Uranian system of astrology. These three together have everything to do with the rule of law, with accountability. I wrote this last month, but will say it again: Robert Mueller, this is a good time to roll out some indictments.
This week, Democrats take over the House of Representatives. It will be a very Saturnian week—not only the shutdown negotiations but also the start of many Democratic investigations into He Who Will Not Be Named. The shutdown could last til mid-January. We have to get through a Sun-Pluto conjunction in Capricorn between the 9th and 12th. Then Jupiter and Neptune bring release.
The middle of the month brings Uranus to the fore and puts some distance from Saturnian seriousness. Get ready for some change! The Leo full moon on the 21st is a big supermoon and total lunar eclipse, amplifying its pretty Venus-Jupiter energy of connection and fulfillment. The month ends with Mars-Pluto action – looks like power struggles on the big stage.
So in the spirit of making earthy, important, daily changes – inspired by my Taurus partner—let’s all use that juicy Capricorn new moon coming on the 5th to contemplate how to stop utilizing single-use plastics, for example…
No one knows better than Saturn in Capricorn that every action counts.
Important January dates: (all times EST)
January 5 828 pm Solar eclipse and new moon @ 15’25 Capricorn
January 20 400 am Sun enters Aquarius
January 21 016 am Full moon and lunar eclipse @ 0’52 Leo
December 21 2018
I wish you all a happy and healthy holiday season, and especially a Happy Solstice as we greet the return of the light today!
December 1 2018
December is a relatively calm month! Yay!
What I love about astrology is that the influences are constantly shifting. December is a quite easy month! Of course there are some caveats. It’s an easy month — yes, except for that pesky Uranus- Neptune angle that makes us feel like we’re in the midst of chaos, and except for the angst-inducing approach of the Saturn Pluto conjunction next spring.
But let’s focus on the delights of December. Jupiter is in the early degrees of Sagittarius, its home sign, adding to the overall sense of magic that this Sagittarian always feels at this time of year, the time of short days and delicious darkness. Jupiter in Sag brings magic, the sense that we are all held together in a luminous fabric of meaning. It brings completion, a turn of the wheel of fate. Things feel portentous under this influence.
Sagittarius — where the Sun is for most of the month—is a mutable sign, along with Gemini, Virgo, and Pisces. These four signs share the quality of being transitional, moving us all to the solstices and equinoxes which mark important thresholds, turning points. The mutable signs are future oriented, adaptive, moving to the next phase. What I love about November and December is what I love about Sagittarian-ness, the sense of movement and new direction which is unfolding before us. We’re going somewhere folks, and we don’t know exactly where. It requires a tremendous amount of trust in the universe to go on this ride!
So Sagittarius, the Archer, moves us outward and upward, to new heights of understanding so that we can step across that Capricornian threshold on the Winter Solstice. And what a threshold it is this year!
December 7th is a whopping new moon in Sag with a 90-degree angle to Mars and Neptune in Pisces.
This is quite a line-up! It is an opportunity to project a massive amount of energy. It is a good day to focus on healing and on the interconnectedness of all things. It is a good day to pray and take action for peace, for justice, for the healing of our world. I think of a Mars -Neptune combination as being a lot like Storm, the X-Men character who could create weather. We will have the capacity to manifest atmosphere of all kinds next week! Let’s go!
Then the Winter Solstice comes on the 21st, when the Sun enters Capricorn. It’s the return of the light! This event comes with beautiful angles to Venus in Scorpio and also a Mercury-Jupiter conjunction in Sag. The Cancer full moon falls almost on top of the Solstice, not even a full 24 hours later.
Wow—these influences add up to a juicy, emotional, loving, communicative time.. and that influence lasts a few days! Then Mars at the end of Pisces joins up with Chiron during the last week of December, just as the Sun in Capricorn approaches Saturn by the 31st. It’s accountability time!
(Robert Mueller, if you’re reading this, the last week of December might be a good time for you to make some moves…Just sayin.’)
December’s Important Dates (EST)
December 7 222 am New Moon at 15’07 Sag
December 21 524 pm Winter Solstice! Sun enters Capricorn
December 22 1250 pm Full Moon at 0’49 Cancer
Happy Holiday Season!
October 31, 2018
Venus retrograde will champion harmony, love, and interconnectedness– I swear!
Mercury goes retrograde
and Jupiter finds its happy place.
Yup, all this and more in November!
Venus retrogrades back into Libra today, and it spends the next week opposing Uranus, which inches back into Aries on the 6th. They both make an important angle to the North Lunar Node at the start of the month and at the end.
What does this mean, you wonder, for the train wreck that the United States political scene seems to be… ?
First, a disclaimer. As I have mentioned before in these pages, I am torn between my several-planets -in-Scorpio doomsaying and my essential Sagittarian optimism. I know it seems counterintuitive, but my optimism wins out. I know, hard to trust it. No matter how many times I read the Bhagavad Gita, my attachment to outcomes is very strong in these political matters. This has clouded my judgment in the past, so I don’t blame you if you are skeptical about my analysis… So here goes:
Venus, the North Node, and Uranus suggest to me – especially with Venus being retrograde, marching through the underworld as she is, gathering up her forces—that we have the capacity to stand up for peace, harmony and liberation. As Paul Krugman wrote in yesterday’s NY Times, the midterm elections are a referendum on hate. Indeed they are. I think hate will lose on November 6th. Venus in Libra will inspire us to look to our ideals as we head to the voting booth.
The planets continue to move in a positive direction for the rest of November, culminating in Jupiterian fulfillment and completion and a downright celebratory vibe by the end of the month.. Jaysus! I hope I am right.
Mercury goes retrograde on November 16th!
On the day that Venus turns direct our pal Mercury goes retrograde. I know, if it’s not one thing, it’s another! This stretch of Mercury retrograde is in Sagittarius, which might make travel particularly messy. But you know the drill: go with the flow, pay attention to your intuition, and watch your dreams. It’s downtime for the linear mind. Fun!
The full moon occurs this month just after midnight (EST) on US Thanksgiving Day, just minutes into November 23rd. This powerful full moon falls with Jupiter and Mars. In light of Mercury being retrograde and a powerful full moon, I’d be watching weather and travel mix-ups over the Thanksgiving weekend. Just sayin.
Speaking of Jupiter, it enters Sagittarius November 8
Jupiter, the planet that rules Sagittarius, enters its own sign on the 8th. This big, gassy planet is so fiery and bright its meaning is as big and potent as that of the Sun in astrology. As the planet that rules Sag, it is all about fulfillment, and the wisdom and joy that comes from perceiving the meaning of all things. I know, it sounds grandiose, and god knows Sagittarius can be excessive. Yet the infectious joyfulness of Sagittarius comes from a deep sense that everything in the universe hangs together in an invisible fabric of meaning. So Jupiter connotes movement of fate in our lives, — or destiny, the turning of the wheel of fortune. In popular culture it is associated with luck but it has more to do fulfillment, the completion of cycles.. Jupiter will be in Sagittarius til the end of 2019.
November’s Important Dates (EST)
November 6 VOTE!!!!!
November 7 1103 am New Moon @ 15’11 Scorpio
November 16 552 am Venus goes direct @ 25’14 Libra
November 16 834 pm Mercury goes retrograde @13’29 Sag
November 22 403 am Sun enters Sagittarius
November 23 1240 am Full moon @ 0’52 Gemini
October 26, 2018
Yes, just when we think things couldn’t get any crazier…
It’s true: things are nuts. Pipe bomb attacks on Democrats, #45 calling for US Army troops to go the border, the Kashoggi murder, stock market jitters.
Today, October 26, is the day Venus retrograde crosses paths with the Scorpio Sun and goes behind it for the rest of the retrograde. In myth, Venus begins her descent into the underworld. The next three weeks of Venus retrograde will show us what resistance looks like. It will reveal how strong our Venusian values of interconnectedness really are…
I must admit, this astrologer veers between Sagittarian optimism and Scorpionic doom-saying. Nonetheless what has been happening is quite in line with the tumult in the stars. Wednesday’s full moon fell exactly with Uranus, so shocking events are to be expected. Astrologers everywhere know that we are in for economic shake-ups, and that the Earth itself is shouting out in distress. Venus retrograde is a classic time of diplomatic breakthroughs or breakdowns, so the Turkish-Saudi dynamics around the Kashoggi execution are part of that.
And….what are we supposed to do!?
My optimistic side always wins out. We gotta vote, people! Venus in the underworld will bring out the rageful goddess, who stands up to this oppression and insanity. Don’t mourn, organize!
More next week in my November column. In the meantime, Happy Halloween. Talk to those ancestors– we need their help right about now.
September 30 2018
October brings us Venus retrograde, just in time for the mid-term elections and the culmination of the Supreme Court battle.
Yes!! This is just what we need right about now, an intervention from the great goddess!
Venus in Scorpio goes retrograde on October 5th. Venus retrograde happens every 18 months, and it lasts only six weeks. Now don’t be worrying: its action personally occurs more on the plane of reflection than action. (Stuff doesn’t break, the way it might under Mercury and Mars retrograde… )
Remember that Venus has a complex sphere of action– it has to do with relatedness and the core values that undergird our sense of being connected to the world around us. And yes, it has to do with relationships. Venus also has to do with beauty and art, ideals and idealization. Across this spectrum of meaning you can see its dual role of ruling both Taurus and Libra. Venus is an all-round great goddess.
What does it mean personally when Venus goes retrograde?
Venus retrograde is a 40-day process during which we reflect on our core values and whether we are living in sync with them or not. That process can have some uncomfortable moments, especially if there is a dissonance between what we really want and what we are doing. The discomfort can be starkest after the Sun and Venus cross paths and Venus gets “behind” the Sun. That point occurs this time on October 26th. The remaining 20 days of the transit are kind of a trip through the underworld with Venus as our guide. That’s why the ancient Mayans — who who were the first to record Venus’ complex orbit– thought that during this part of her journey she changed into a warrior. (More on this below in my analysis of the political impact of Venus retrograde.) You can imagine that what Venus defends during this period are our core values.
Keep in mind that the first few weeks of the transit occur in Scorpio and then on October 31 Venus retrogrades back into Libra where it spends the remainder of its retrograde until November 16th.
This particular transit is likely to shine a light on relationships and make the personal very political. Issues of power and agency will be very important, especially around gender and sexuality.
Okay, so how do we deal with Venus retrograde?
First, no big decisions. No breakups. Sit in your discomfort.
Second, reflect on what was going on in your life the last time Venus was retrograde in March 2017, and perhaps more significantly, when it retrograded in Scorpio in November 2010. (Of course, who can remember that far?!) In any case, some similar issues might come up for us but in a different way.
Third, Venus can have to do with material resources. During the retrograde period, we are all struggling with values and the literal value of things. Conventional astrology cautions us to avoid big purchases or outlays. To me, it is more about evaluating where we are investing our energy, and the retrograde is a good time to take stock of that.
Fourth, enjoy this period. It’s always interesting when the unconscious side of a planet is on the surface. Pay attention to your dreams and urges.
Politically, Venus retrograde is a whole other thing… It’s payback time.
Because this process has to do with core values there can be a similar awareness of a misalignment between values and what is happening politically.
Venus retrograde is famous for being a time of great political instability when leaders fall and diplomacy breaks down. The ancient Mayans thought that the period when
Venus gets behind the Sun (the last 20 days) is a time of preparing for war.
Venus is turning retrograde against the backdrop of the Kavanaugh nomination to the Supreme Court, where the naked entitlement of patriarchal and misogynistic control is visible for all to see. In fact, October 5th – the day Venus turns– is the day the FBI investigation of the allegations of sexual assault against him will be completed. Whether or not he ultimately makes it to the Supreme Court, Venus retrograde will throw down a gauntlet. In the larger context of #MeToo, #WhyIDidntReport, and #Believe Women, women are galvanized to take power.
And quite conveniently, Venus retrograde dominates the run up to the November mid-term elections. By the end of October it opposes Uranus and remains in an angle to Uranus through the first week of November. The Uranus effect will be about radical change and radically challenging the status quo.
Here are some interesting astro-historical facts…
In 1991, when the Senate considered Clarence Thomas’ nomination for the Supreme Court, Anita Hill’s allegations surfaced just as a Venus retrograde period was ending. Unfortunately for her and for us, the patriarchy reasserted itself by the time of her testimony and the vote which both occurred after Venus went direct.
In November 2010, the last time Venus retrograded in Scorpio, Republicans took back the House, gained footing in the Senate, and took several governorships, all as a result of Tea Party and anti-Pres. Obama organizing.
The Venus retrograde challenge is not only concerning sexual assault but it is also about progressive values that reflect a broad vision of justice. Venus retrograde is likely to strengthen grassroots organizing that has already brought people like Alexandra Ocasio-Cortez, Stacey Abrams, and others to the fore. The status quo is being challenged across the board.
Then there are the other parts of our political landscape that should receive some Venus retrograde challenge, and those have to do with #45. The March/April 2017 Venus retrograde began with Trump accusing Pres. Obama of wiretapping Trump Tower to affect his campaign. When Venus went behind the Sun at the end of March 2017, Michael Flynn agreed to testify about Russia so he could get immunity. Wikileaks released troves of information during the last Venus retrograde and also during the November 2010 one. Let’s keep in mind that the Mueller investigation is not over.
Trump used the Venus retrograde last March and April to rescind many Obama-era regulations, especially about climate, labor and immigration. This time Venus retrograde is swinging the pendulum back against him. Let’s hope so, anyway!
October’s Important dates
October 5 306 pm Venus goes retrograde @ 10’49 Scorpio
October 8 1148 pm New moon @ 15’48 Libra
October 24 246 pm Full Moon @ 1’13 Taurus
October 26 Venus crosses the Sun and enters the underworld
October 31 Venus retrogrades into Libra
And Happy Halloween! Honor the Ancestors!
September 4 2018
September brings movement and some planetary relief!
September starts off in a pokey way since Mars—having just ended its two-month retrograde– is still almost at a standstill. But relief is in sight! August had so many planets moving retrograde that life felt like it was stuck in molasses. Jupiter is moving direct now in Scorpio and Saturn in Capricorn turns direct on the 6th. (The far outer planets – Uranus, Neptune, and Pluto – are retrograde but this astrologer doesn’t think that is as noticeable since they affect us less personally and they spend so much time being retrograde ….)
The big news of the month is that Saturn and Jupiter spend the first half of September in a half-square. This potent angle returns the focus to economic issues. I expect some global shifts on the economic front, especially in regard to natural resources (metals, oil etc), and I also expect more fallout and drama concerning 45’s tariffs. I have been expecting Saturn and Jupiter and the entry of Uranus into Taurus to bring a financial downturn, frankly.
More interesting even than Saturn and Jupiter is that Saturn is lined up in an exact angle to Chiron. To me, this is the accountability angle. It was also in play last month and we saw all kinds of accountability flowing towards Trump from the Mueller investigation and from the New York State Attorney General (and from Omarosa, god love her venal self!) There was very thinly –veiled criticism directed at #45 at Sen. McCain’s funeral. The father of slain college student Mollie Tibbetts lashed out at Trump Jr over his opportunistic racism in a brilliant “not in our name” op ed :https://www.huffingtonpost.com/entry/dont-use-mollie-tibbetts-death-to-promote-racism-says-dad_us_5b8b45dfe4b0511db3d94eb1 And there has been a spate of powerful primary election upsets, from Alessandra Ocasio-Cortez in New York to Andrew Gillum in Florida. Pushback is happening.
And all of this has unfolded under the Saturn –Chiron aspect and before Saturn turns direct…. I am looking forward to Saturn direct and its angle to Jupiter. Saturn, Jupiter, and Chiron can also concern the legal system. The Kavanaugh confirmation hearings begin today. Harrumph. His Aquarian Sun sits on the Moon of the US’ chart; his Mercury in Aquarius is on the earth axis, and he has Mars retrograde. He is a stealth operator with strong connections to the world and to the zeitgeist of the US, whether or not he makes it onto the Supreme Court. Let’s hope the Saturn-Chiron pushback torpedoes his nomination…
The end of Mars retrograde brought the passing of some major public figures: Aretha Franklin—who used the Saturn-Uranus conjunction in her birth chart to great effect. She lifted us all with her creative genius! And, John McCain crossed over as well just before his August 29 birthday –interestingly, he died 9 years to the day after Sen. Ted Kennedy died of the same illness. Ted Kennedy’s Virgo Moon falls in the exact degree of McCain’s Virgo Sun. It is not uncommon to see significant overlap in the charts of people who have close relationships—in fact, I expect it.
September’s lunations pack a punch this month: what the Virgo new moon carries in delicious Neptunian inspiration is matched by the kick-ass Aries full moon on the 24th which has Saturn and Chiron all over it. Accountability and responsibility will be the focus.
And get ready for Venus retrograde on October 5th! Yay! This astrologer thinks that this transit could be excellent for the November mid-terms….
By the way, September is a great month for planet watching! Get out there and look for Venus, Jupiter, Saturn and Mars in the night sky. Mercury is visible in the east only this week and next just before dawn, and it’s breathtakingly beautiful! Mercury is hard to see so take the opportunity to do it, as I did last week in Truro on Cape Cod (and a shout out to committed astronomy-lover Rebecca who made me get up at 430 am…!)
September’s important dates – (all times EDT)
September 22 955 pm Fall equinox! Sun enters Libra
September 24 1052 pm Harvest moon! Full moon @ 2’00 Aries.
August 4 2018
Mercury and Mars retrograde continue to mess with us…but August does usher in some stability.
Are we having fun yet? This is the strangest summer, astrologically speaking. And as you may have noticed, my interpretation of these confusing influences bounces between Scorpionic paranoia and Sagittarian optimism. Last month I was pessimistic (a “fun hoover,” as a British friend called me. The nerve!) This month I am downright hopeful. Well, kind of, anyway.
Mars retrograde continues to square Uranus in Taurus this month, exaggerating the surprise factor that Mars retrograde plus Mercury retrograde always brings. This month, Mars sneaks back into the tail end of Capricorn on the 12th, and it remains in Capricorn past the rest of its retrograde and into September. Mars’ entry back into Capricorn will change the vibe, that’s for sure, moving its influence from the ideological to the practical and earthy. Of course this could certainly highlight issues of climate change and environmental degradation – we are already seeing fires and extreme heat in unusual places (England, Ireland, Sweden!) , extreme flooding, high levels of volcanic and seismic activity, etc.
At the same time, Saturn in Capricorn lines up with Jupiter on the earth axis for the second half of August. This important influence can be about resources and long-term planning. Mars in Capricorn could also shift the focus to the economy. Hmm, there could be an economic hit under this planetary situation. Whether it affects us in the realm of economics or not, it is a very big reality check. Saturn squares Chiron all month and I see this combination as a dose of accountability. I am expecting some economic changes, perhaps the impact 45’s tariffs and other stupidities coming home to roost.
August is the month of Mueller
Not only is Robert Mueller’s birthday on August 7th but August 7th brings a very juicy line- up of the Sun, Jupiter, Venus and Mercury retrograde. I’m expecting some revelations from him this month, maybe even this week. And then let’s throw Saturn and Chiron into the mix, bringing accountability. Chiron is often called the “wounded healer,” shining a light on the part of ourselves that needs uplifting and healing. The challenge is to find the sacred in the hurting part of ourselves.
Chiron just recently entered Aries. This is an opportunity to heal individualism and excessive egoism, to find the sacredness in our individuality and transcend patterns of individual self-aggrandizement. The square to Saturn in Capricorn makes this urgent. Saturn is transiting the first house of the US’s natal chart, and Chiron is in the 4th house. The US is grappling with significant issues of identity, individualism, and security. All of this occurs against the backdrop of the US beginning its Pluto return – the first time Pluto has returned to the position it had in the US chart since 1776. Pluto is bringing our shadow to the surface.
We have a great deal of work to do to confront and heal the core wounds of the US that are rooted in racism and genocide. Chiron and Saturn are helping us out.
Mercury goes direct on the 19th and Mars on the 27th…. And we have another eclipse to get through on the 11th.
Remember to go with the flow and stay close to your intuition. We are in between eclipses right now, and the energies are building towards a major release after the August 26th full moon and after Mars turns around on the 27th.
And here is a sneak preview– Venus turns retrograde in October and lasts through the US midterm elections. The Sagittarian side of me thinks that’s a good sign, core values and all that….. More on this next month!
August’s important dates (all times EDT)
August 11 559 am New moon @ 18’42 Leo and partial eclipse
August 12 1015 pm Mars retrogrades into Capricorn
August 23 0010 am Sun enters Virgo
August 26 757 am Full moon @ 3’12 Pisces
August 27 1006 am Mars goes direct @ 28’36 Capricorn!
July 3 2018
July! Mars retrograde, two eclipses, major Uranus action. And Mercury retrograde too!
This Sagittarian astrologer does not usually experience speechlessness, but the month of July is really hard to write about… The influences are very unpredictable, and although I don’t predict per se, unpredictability makes an astrologer’s job kinda hard.
There’s the unpredictability of the planetary combinations this month, and then there is the seriousness and potential chaos of what I expect July to bring us. Yeah, yeah, I know – you’re thinking, haven’t we been living in a state of unpredictability and chaos for months? Well yes, but this is a bit different. Just so you know, I am experiencing some polarity in myself – my essential Sagittarian optimism is running up against some Scorpio moon paranoia, and you’ll see both strands running through this commentary.
As you know, Mars went retrograde on June 26th at about 9 degrees Aquarius. Mars retrograde is an interesting, important, and somewhat confounding transit that only occurs once every 2+ years. It signifies that the Martian dominant energy of action and will are hard to manifest. We are in reaction to circumstances rather than taking action. That it is retrograde in Aquarius is unusual – it is an infrequent placement, statistically. Aquarius is an air sign that has to do with our relationship to the collective, the universal, and the ideas that undergird that relationship. I wrote last month that Mars retrograde could surface more resistance to toxic masculinity, in light of Mars’ association with conventional male expression.
We are already seeing tremendous public outcry in the US against Trump’s immigration policies, specifically family separations. Tension is building as 45’s autocratic rule becomes more extreme, and the fate of the Supreme Court is in play. We are likely to see powerful opposition to 45’s Supreme Court nominee that will focus on Roe v Wade. The planning for last year’s national and local women’s marches and overall women’s resistance to 45 and to a political system that doesn’t care about women and children began right after the 2016 election when Mars entered Aquarius. Women have been running for office in droves and last week’s NYC win by democratic socialist Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez was a Mars retrograde upset. One thousand mostly white (and straight) women marched on the Department of Justice last week to protest family separations, and over six hundred were arrested. Wow! (As my partner Rebecca said, “when was the last time that happened and they weren’t all lesbians?”)
The Aquarian energy is very interesting right now….Keep in mind that the moon of the US is in Aquarius. Even though it is located at a degree in late Aquarius, the Mars retrograde is still impactful for the US public. Democratic ideals are at stake. Maine Senator Susan Collins, who has said publicly she would oppose any anti-abortion Supreme Court nominee, has Mars in Aquarius….
Immigration, the Court, 45’s coziness with dictators will all become more highlighted around the June 12 new moon in Cancer which is also a partial solar eclipse. This new moon opposes Pluto quite exactly. The issues will be homeland security, borders, protectionism, state power.
Get ready, folks.
Uranus is creeping forward in early Taurus. The earth is rumbling in a serious way – earthquakes and volcanic activity are up. Wildfires in England and again in Northern California. We are in tornado season and hurricane season.
In addition to Uranus in Taurus having implications for the earth, it also affects our financial systems. Saturn retrograde and Jupiter direct are once again approaching their half-square on the earth axis this summer,w hich has a lot to do with economic “corrections.” I’m expecting major changes in financial markets as 45’s trade wars kick in.
But the big astrological events line up at the end of July. Mercury in Leo turns retrograde July 26. July 27 has an exact opposition between Mars retrograde and the Sun. It is also the day of a full moon in Aquarius and total lunar eclipse—all squaring Uranus. I call this a trifecta of weirdness.
There is always an unexpected quality to Mars retrograde, but you add Mercury retrograde and Uranus to the mix and it is wild and crazy, dramatic, surprising. The full moon and eclipse intensify and illuminate everything. There are likely to be revelations and events that take us by surprise. There could be an unleashing of revolutionary fervor. There could be major environmental or climate-related events. I really don’t know – it is all possible. And I hope I am totally wrong.
In light of the backdrop of climate change and how complex July’s new and full moons are, I would recommend that everyone everywhere be prepared for extreme events. I often recommend avoiding travel on new and full moons simply because so much more water gets pulled around the earth on lunations and weather can be terrible. This month, be careful and be prepared. The July 27 full moon is especially dicey.
Mars retrograde moves into a square with Uranus for the entire last week of July and into August. Mercury is retrograde into August as well. Forget about doing what you thought you were going to do from July 26 til August 19th. When I say go with the flow during this stretch, I mean it!
On a positive note, Uranus brings change. There has been a lot of media attention lately about how atomized and polarized the US electorate is. Uranus also has a lot to do with technology, and it has been during Uranus’ 7 –year pass through Aries that our opinions and media input have become more individualized and segmented. Uranus is now in Taurus. More than anything Taurus and its ruling planet Venus have to do with values of relatedness. We are now questioning what it means to be in our little media bubbles and unable to relate to people with different opinions. Uranus in Taurus is stirring the pot about this question of relatedness and it will continue to be important, especially in the run-up to the midterm elections. Keep in mind that Uranus begins to retrograde in August and will sneak back into the tail end of Aries in the fall, so there will be a lot of flip-flopping about this issue of polarization…
Of course, the backdrop to all of these questions about democracy, inclusion, and freedom is that the United States has begun its Pluto return. Pluto in the sky is back in the second house of the natal chart of the US, the house (and sign) it was in on July 4, 1776 for the first time in over 200 years.
It is time for transformation. The Pluto return is a multi-year process of exploring the core values of the US…. Are the core values freedom and democracy or enslavement and genocide? How does a nation that seeks to be democratic heal the core wounds of our history? How do we achieve democracy with an autocratic demagogue as president and a broken political system?
Think on that on July 4th!
July’s Important Dates — all times EDT
July 12th 1049 pm New moon @ 20’41 Cancer — partial eclipse
July 26 104 am Mercury goes retrograde @ 23’27 Leo
July 27 Sun opposes Mercury retrograde! Batten down the hatches!
July 27 422 pm Full moon @ 4’45 Aquarius
June 21 2018
Happy Solstice! Today marks an important astrological and astronomical event, when the
sun reaches its northernmost point for the year. In many earth-based cultures, the solstice is time of fulfillment or culmination. It is the turning of the wheel of the year. As they write in EarthSky, my favorite science blog,
I know– solstice or no, it is hard to celebrate anything right now in light of the dramatically difficult events taking place in this world of ours. As I study the planetary combinations, I see that
June 4 2018
Enjoy June while we can – Mars goes retrograde June 26 for two months!
Oh me oh my oh. There is a lot going on this month! And the summer will be dominated by Mars retrograde—more on that shortly.
But first , let’s talk about Mother Earth. Uranus in Taurus is kicking up lots of action on the volcano and earthquake front, much as I expected. Remember that Uranus just entered Taurus on May 15. Since then there has not only been the Kilauea lava flows on the Big Island of Hawai’I but also yesterday’s lethal eruption of the Fuego Volcano in Guatemala. Additionally there has been a very high level of seismic activity world- wide. There are normally around 100 earthquakes around the globe in any 24 hour period, many of them small and unremarkable (0-2.0 on the Richter scale) and most clustered around predictable fault lines such as the San Andreas in California. For the past few weeks the daily earthquake tally is over 200 and on many days over 500! Yow! There are a hundred quakes a day near Mount Kilauea, most of them small, but last night brought one over 5.0.
Lest I sound like a “doom merchant” – as one of my friends calls me teasingly – let me just say that this is …. shall we say, concerning. (That’s me trying not to sound alarmist.) The Earth sure is rocking and rolling right now. God knows I am not a seismologist or geologist — I‘m just an opinionated Sagittarius with way too many planets in Scorpio for her own good. Uranus in Taurus will be really triggered this summer by an angle to Mars retrograde, so I am expecting more of this. Not only am I concerned about the Ring of Fire but there are also now quite a few daily earthquakes – not big ones, but — in the state of Washington. I do worry about the Cascadia fault line. Just sayin’.
June brings us many interesting things on the political front. #45’s birthday is June 14. His birthday chart indicates that he will be more thin-skinned and defensive than ever. Oh great. The big summit with Kim Jong-un occurs on June 12, falling on the Gemini new moon of June 13. That is actually quite auspicious, good for new beginnings, and the transits are favorable for communication, believe it or not. But—whatever gets agreed is likely to fall apart by late summer. Kim is a Capricorn undergoing a long Pluto transit, consolidating his power. He’s smart and strategic and he shares a Mercury-Neptune angle with #45 – neither of them tells the truth. Mars retrograde transits Kim’s Mars in August and in any case will bring changes and the unexpected to the planet. Mars retro will have a significant effect on his chart.
Here’s my tutorial. All the planets spend some time being retrograde. Retrograde motion means that from the earth’s point of view – because of our relative position to the other planet—it looks like the other planet is moving backwards. It’s not. Since much of astrology has to do with what is observable from our point of view on this wee blue planet of ours, it is an art that is earth-centric and all about our perception.
When a planet is retrograde, its normal meaning goes underground and its less expressed sides dominate. That’s why linear process tends to go haywire when Mercury is retrograde and intuition is strong. In my opinion the retrograde passes of the planets close to the Sun are more impactful for us because they describe individual parts of our personality and much of our daily lives and interchange. The outer planets spend a great deal of time retrograde and I think we feel that less. As one of my favorite astrology writers Erin Sullivan writes – and if you’re an astrology maven read her book on Retrograde Planets—we get used to planetary cycles as humans on earth. We even get used to the thrice-yearly stretches of Mercury retrograde.
Mars retrograde only occurs once every 2+ years, so we are not used to it, and we tend not to expect the shift in energy when it hits. Mars represents a big swath of our daily expression and activity. Despite being associated with war and masculine aggression, Mars is a complex symbol and means much more than that. Mars is our will, volition, our energy of action. As Erin Sullivan writes, Mars is the ambassador of the Sun—as such it represents our solar energy out in the world. The Sun is how we are and who we are on a fundamental level, and Mars is what we do. Mars acts for us in the sphere of doing anything, from getting out of bed, to working, to setting goals, for moving ourselves forward with plans and activities. Societies get built through the energy of Mars. And yes, we can start wars too. Mars can show an infantile, self-aggrandizing expression of will, or a sophisticated and thoughtful one.
When it is retrograde, the forward motion goes sideways. Things can feel like they go off track, especially carefully laid plans. The emphasis is process, not outcome, and very positive process can unfold under the influence of Mars retrograde. Nonetheless, it can feel like things get unexpectedly derailed or stymied, and that can feel frustrating and surprising. The main thing is to remember to move with where the energy takes you – it is not a time to dig one’s heels in just because you have a plan. In fact, expect the unexpected this summer!
Interestingly, this stretch of Mars retrograde – which begins on June 16 and ends August 27th—occurs in Aquarius and Capricorn. Aquarius is the most unusual sign placement for Mars retrograde, historically speaking. The last time it fell in Aquarius was 1971, a really rough year in the struggle for civil rights in Northern Ireland, as it happened. (The last time Mars was retrograde at all was 2 years ago in 2016, when Britain voted for Brexit. )
Mars retrograde in Aquarius. Hmm. Keep in mind that Aquarius is an air sign, and it has to do with the collective, the group, and with ideology. Are we part of the group or an outsider? What is the vision and ideology of the group? Do we keep people in or out? It is the sign ruled by Uranus, so it also has to do with technology, change, revolution, vision. Not only will Mars be retrograde in Aquarius but Uranus in Taurus will make a key 90-degree angle to Mars retro during the last half of July and beginning of August. That could be explosive and add to the element of surprise, especially since Mercury will also be retrograde starting July 26. When Mars is retrograde, we have the opportunity to buck the dominant culture, to say no, to move in a different direction. It is a time of reacting rather than acting. That could be a very good thing — perhaps many of us will shake the deer-in -the headlights response to the situation we live in.
Under Mars retrograde in Aquarius, there should be some important national and global developments to watch.
1 . Guns. Sadly, there could be more bad behavior on the part of men with guns, and the response of the US populace could finally reach a tipping point. People – including adults, not only youth– may no longer refuse to take action on this issue
2. Immigration and borders. Mars retrograde in Aquarius raises the question of who are we letting in to the group? Mars retrograde could also surface a resounding “No” to the Administration’s policies towards immigrants, especially in light of its attacks on the integrity of immigrant families
3. The other arena ripe for Mars-retrograde challenge is accountability for police violence against people of color
4. Education. Betsy DeVos. Teacher walkouts. Violence in schools. Keep an eye on the field of education, an Aquarian activity.
5. The Earth and environment. This astrologer is expecting more dramatic earth events and given the role of Uranus this summer, there is the potential for blackouts and something going on with the electrical grid.
6. Ireland. Having just come back from Ireland, there is a situation developing there in which Mars retrograde could really play a role. Word on the street North and South is that Brexit could result in the reinstatement of a “hard” border between Northern Ireland and Ireland, much to the distress of many people on both sides of the border. The power-sharing government in the North is not operating right now, and the conservative/reactionary Democratic Unionists are a partner in Theresa May’s government, advocating for the hard border. Keep an eye on Ireland this summer and also on the whole Brexit situation.
7. Europe. Mars retrograde could raise resistance to the splintering occurring in the European Union, the rise of right wing populism and anti-immigrant governments.
8. I am holding off on predictions about the Mueller investigation….. But it sure is looking interesting just based on tonight’s news. And sure, could government come to a standstill under this influence? Yup.
So Mars turns retrograde on June 26, just before a whopping full moon in Capricorn on the 28 which lines up exactly with Saturn. This full moon will set the stage for whatever unexpected changes we all we need to make under Mars’ retrograde influence… Could be the Mueller investigation, could be a major weather/climate event, could be economic. Hmm. We will see!
June’s important planetary dates
June 21 608 am Summer Solstice!! Sun enters Cancer
June 26 506 pm Mars goes retrograde @ 9’12 Aquarius
June 28 0054 am Full moon @ 6’28 Capricorn
More on Mars retrograde in my July column!
May 4 2018
May ushers in a few months of astrological craziness– and Uranus enters Taurus for the first time since 1934
Hold on! Mother Earth has something to say!
My apologies to all you curious and perhaps anxious Taureans out there– I know I’m a tad late with my forecast, having been in Ireland communing with dear friends, with ancestors, and with these sweet Irish shaggy bulls.
May is a complicated month, and sets the stage for even more weirdness that comes at the end of June when Mars goes retrograde. (But more on that next month!) In addition to Saturn and Pluto in earthy Capricorn, we have Uranus joining the ranks of major planets in earth signs when it enters Taurus May 15th. So yes, Mother Earth will have a lot to say — I dare say she is already raising her voice in Hawai’i and other places.
Uranus has an orbit of 84 years, spending about 7 years in a sign. We have just lived through 7 years of Uranus in Aries. When Uranus entered Aries we witnessed Arab Spring, among other movements for liberation. Taurus is an earth sign, and as such its realm is the material plane, the realm of the material realities of work, value, stability and the earth itself. Uranus is the chaos principle, bringing upheaval, change, and innovation that is manifested on a collective level. As the ruler of Aquarius, Uranus’ action is mental and in the realm of ideas, thinking, ideology. Like all planetary energies it has its positive and its negative sides. Positively speaking, Uranus brings revolution, busting through boundaries of tradition, exciting change, technological advancement, idealogical leaps in a context of humanitarian and democratic vision. The epitome of Uranus’ negative expression is #45, whose birth chart is dominated by Uranus, and we can see the dangerously unpredictable and ideologically destructive — if not flat-out unhinged– aspects of the planet’s meaning.
Uranus in Taurus is likely to bring us more dramatic climate changes and weather events, environmental challenges, and perhaps a breakdown (or revolution?) in our financial systems globally. It will challenge our concept of stability. It will expand and force us to innovate to survive and be sustainable. We have the opportunity to radically reformulate our relationship to consumption and use of resources.
Mark your calendars now for May 15th — it is the day of the Taurus new moon which is always delicious and fruitful. Uranus enters Taurus also on May 15, with major aspects to Mercury in Taurus and Mars in Aquarius. It will be a wild new moon–I expect dramatic weather and perhaps even more dramatic political events. Remember that new moons (and full moons) move a ton of water around the planet so be mindful of extreme weather if you’re traveling. New moons are also important times for setting intentions and for conceptualizing new directions. My advice is to all of us is to use this new moon to acquaint ourselves with Uranus in Taurus and welcome radical sustainability into our lives.
In addition to Uranus’ passage into Taurus — and it will sneak back into Aries in November befopre it moves finally and fully into Taurus next March — there is another important planetary ingress occurring. Chiron moved from Pisces into Aries in mid-April. It is sitting at the 0-degrees Aries point now and for most of of 2018. That is an important point on the so-called “earth axis” with major impact for the world. Chiron’s influence is one of healing, of shining a light on what we need to bring into balance. God knows we need to rein in Aries self-aggrandizement and individualism, so perhaps Chiron will help us to do that. At the end of May Jupiter in Scorpio also transits a key point on the earth axis, so Chiron and Jupiter together will put the focus on resources, money, and equity.
May’s Important Planetary Dates (EDT)
May 15 749 am New moon @ 24’36 Taurus
May 15 Uranus enters Taurus!
May 20 1016 pm Sun enters Gemini
May 29 1021 am Full moon @ 8’10 Sagittarius
Better get busy! April begins with a really hard-working conjunction of Mars and Saturn in Capricorn. (That’s my positive spin on this combination, but keep in mind it can also be a bit militaristic. Enter the pusillanimous John Bolton.) Theoretically we could all accomplish a ton this coming week —-if it weren’t for that pesky Mercury retrograde influence. Mercury retro in Aries crosses over the Sun in Aries today and tomorrow, and then by Wednesday Mercury retro squares Mars and Saturn.
Ooh baby. I don’t know about you but this Mercury retrograde has been a bit challenging. This coming week Mercury retrograde should be at its best, bringing surprising information, messing with travel plans, causing computers to crash. For instance, the City of Atlanta’s whole computer system recently was hacked, as were some department stores… Classic Mercury retrograde.
The Mars Saturn conjunction will make us want to put our noses to the grindstone, and Mercury retrograde will channel Henry David Thoreau and ask, to what end?
Otherwise this month brings a wild Aries new moon on April 15th, the same day Mercury turns direct, and the start of a good few days of a Sun Uranus conjunction. Yes, more chaos, more dramatic weather. The Sun and Uranus are good for revolution, though. Keep it up, #NeverAgain youth organizing for a world free of gun violence.
The month ends with more Capricorn intensity: Mars catches up to Pluto in Capricorn on the 24th and stays there through the Scorpio full moon on the 29th. The Mars-Pluto conjunction falls on the axis of the earth, at 21 degrees Capricorn. Your astrologer is in a positive frame of mind so she’s gonna go with this being an aspect of speaking truth to power.
Let’s take a minute to reflect on Capricorn, what with Mars, Saturn, and Pluto all there. Saturn and Pluto will remain in Capricorn for a while yet (years…). I know, it’s spring, and I should be writing about Aries but the Capricorn energy is so strong right now that I must.
This image to the right is an old Roman depiction of the mythical Sea-Goat. That’s the origin of that loopy Capricorn glyph which is drawn a few ways:
I love the Sea -Goat because it draws a clear line to connect Capricorn to its opposite sign Cancer, Cancer being the Cardinal water sign. We tend to think of Capricorn as the Mountain Goat achieving great heights, and Capricorn does reflect some of that earthy ambition and hard work. It is, of course, an Earth sign. (Gotta love those earth signs, as a girl with no earth in her chart!) However, the Cancer-Capricorn axis is all about roots and security. In Cancer that shows up as emotional security, and in Capricorn, it is about manifestation. Can we manifest ourselves from a place of rootedness and real security?
So all this Capricorn energy right now … it is challenging the Cancerian United States to figure out what real security looks like– thus the #NeverAgain movement, the recent #MeToo wildfire, the ongoing movements for racial justice and earth justice. How do we manifest a real sense of rootedness and trust? Those are the questions these Capricorn planets are asking, and in their earthy ways, they are helping us find the answers. It’s kind of a form of Thoreau’s question—What is our work — really?
April’s Important Planetary Dates
April 15 957 pm New moon @ 26’o2 Aries
April 19 1113 pm Sun enters Taurus
April 22 happy earth day!
April 29 858 pm Full moon at 9’39 Scorpio
February 28 2018
March brings two full moons and Mercury retrograde!
And more Jupiter-Saturn accountability
What a month this is! There is a juicy full moon in Virgo on March 1st which carries some very pretty aspects. Mercury and Venus spend the first three weeks of March moving as a pair, first in Pisces, then in Aries. That’s all about conviviality and connection. Mars is in this picture at the very start of the month, giving it some oomph and sense of shared purpose. So the first half of March is quite easy. Jupiter and Saturn continue their special relationship of the past few months, keeping the focus on what judicious decision-making could actually look like.
Patriarchy under fire
The more our public discourse and actions fly in the face of being life-affirming, caring, and humane, the more resistance there will be. We have seen #MeToo sweep the country, as women have stood up to patriarchal bad behavior over the past several months. Now with #NeverAgain, young people are resisting a different aspect of patriarchy run amok – namely our over-the-top gun culture.
As I have said, Jupiter and Saturn are all about sustainability. Is our relationship to guns and mass violence sustainable? No, it’s not. Is white supremacy sustainable? Nope.
Good Dad/Bad Dad
Jupiter and Saturn also have to do with patriarchy, with paternalism and fatherhood, the idea of protection and backbone and rectitude. We are enduring a great lack of those qualities in our public sphere, suffering under a Congress that lacks a spine in the face of a deranged and white supremacist President, and in the face of senseless violence on every level of society.
Jupiter and Saturn are at work in the popular culture depictions of alternative visions of loving, positive maleness. One of them is Jack Pearson’s character in the TV show “This Is Us.” Jack is the ultimate Good Dad — loving, protective, responsible, self-sacrificing.
The other example is King T’Challa in the film Black Panther. King T’Challa is the Good King, the strong and kindly protector of his Wakanda nation and ultimately of all oppressed people on Earth. And of course it is very significant that he is Black and African. Meanwhile we have a President who is the ultimate Bad Dad—abusive, misogynistic, erratic, uncaring. And of course, there is Robert Mueller as a manifestation of Jupiter and Saturn, quietly holding wrongdoers accountable.
Pluto comes back around
This is quite a time we live in. Keep in mind that we are approaching the first Pluto return in the chart of the United States, when Pluto returns to where it was in 1776. The shadow side of the US is being unmasked. It’s awful, painful, scary — but good. We have to see the shadow in order to transform it. The Pluto return really starts in 2020 but we are experiencing the run-up to it.
Back to the month of March …
Happy Spring Equinox on the 20th, and then Mercury retrograde on the 22nd ! The second half of the month has the Sun and Mars in a square. That’s active, forceful energy. It culminates in a full moon in Libra on the 31st which has a Mars-Saturn conjunction and a tiny but potent Pluto angle. Put on our collective seatbelts – there could be the drumbeat of war, or perhaps a power struggle between 45 and Special Prosecutor Mueller…
March’s Planetary Events
March 1 7:52 pm EST Full Moon @11’23 Virgo
March 20 12:17 pm EDT Happy Spring! Sun enters Aries
March 22 8:20 pm EDT Mercury goes retrograde @ 16’54 Aries (until April 15th!)
March 31 8:38 am EDT Full Moon @10’45 Libra
February 2 2018
Welcome to February’s planets, or how to stay sane when life feels like an Octavia Butler * novel…
droughts and earthquakes and congressional craziness oh my!
Happy Brigid’s Day! or Imbolc in the pagan calendar. February 2 is a time to celebrate poetry, creative fire, and healing. It is a time to nurture our sacred flame. And nurture our sacred flames we must. It’s way too easy to lose focus and become distracted by 45’s Uranus-driven chaos.
February is a relatively calm month, although with all the Aquarian energy in the sky for the first half of the month we may need to be careful of too much ideological angst. Aquarius can dig its heels in ideologically. Mercury will be conjunct the Sun for a good few days starting on the 15th, also adding to the jumpiness.
But remember– Aquarius is also the sign of radical reorientation, and we can all use a dose of that!
The dominant aspect this month continues to be Saturn and Jupiter in their “special” relationship or angle. This angle — in effect now and on and off for months– will be highlighted on February 8th and for a few days after when the Sun squares Jupiter. Remember that this Jupiter-Saturn influence has a lot to do with sustainability and accountability. Is our current political and environmental situation sustainable? Well, no, it’s not. How are we sustaining ourselves in this crazy time? How are we holding ourselves and our leaders accountable? It can be extremely destabilizing and dispiriting to watch the wholesale lack of accountability occurring on every level. The Jupiter-Saturn influence brings our sense of disjuncture to a crisis level, and change will ensue.
The Sun’s transit of the Jupiter-Saturn angle may bring things to a head in terms of government functioning– or dysfunction. It may bring to light more entrenched dysfunction in the patriarchy vis a vis the treatment of women. It may bring a bursting of the inflated stock market. As I’ve been saying, I’m waiting to see how Robert Mueller’s investigation unfolds. Things have been heating up since the Sun-Venus -Pluto conjunction in January. We will see!
The other important event this month is the new moon in Aquarius on the 15th. Mercury catches up to the Sun and Moon and Mars squares Neptune. The Aquarian new moon is always wonderful for visioning, and the Mars-Neptune square amplifies everything we think or focus on.
If there were ever a day to focus on world peace and justice and healing, February 15th is the day. Our thoughts have big wings on this upcoming new moon. Let’s use its power !!
February’s important dates
February 15 406 pm EST New moon@ 27’08 Aquarius
February 18 12 19 pm EST Sun enters Pisces
No full moon this month– there was one Jan 31 and this is a short month!
* if you are not familiar with Octavia Butler, check her out. She is the “grande dame of American science fiction,” a brilliant writer of prescient dystopian novels. Our current reality brings to mind her Parable of the Sower.
January 1 2018
Wow, this January is quite amazing. Have you ever heard me say that?!
2018 begins with a full moon in Cancer tonight — a supermoon, no less– which ushers in two weeks of a beautiful Sun-Venus conjunction. This pairing of the Sun and Venus in Capricorn is really all about the power of peace and love. I know, corny. But it’s true. This conjunction highlights the value of harmony for all of us.
Pray for peace, everyone. And don’t mourn, organize. And more yoga.
Of course, there are some additional dynamics… but this Sun-Venus conjunction is incredibly important for a few reasons. One is that it is the first joining of the Sun and Venus since the Venus retrograde stretch last March. In a global context, the first Sun-Venus conjunction after the retrograde is a time of tremendous political instability, when leaders are known to fall. It is a time of diplomatic breakdowns and breakthroughs. Just last night, Kim Jong-un, a Jan. 8th Capricorn, reached out to South Korea. (And let us remind ourselves that at the start of the Venus retrograde last March, #45 accused Pres. Obama of illegal wiretapping and the White House denied improper ties to Russia while 6 aides admitted to meetings…)
So there is the possibility this month for some interesting steps towards peace and positive political change. We have quite a pig-pile of planets in Capricorn. Saturn just entered Capricorn on 12/19. Sun, Venus, and Pluto are also in Capricorn, and Mercury enters Cap on the 11th. Earth, earth, earth. All this earth energy– it is literally about our planet earth, and about the real concrete stuff of our lives on earth.
The Sun-Venus conjunction is most exact from the 7th to 11th, when it happens to join up with Pluto. Pluto carries deep transformational energy, and can indicate a reckoning. The three together give oomph to something that has been in development for a while (Robert Mueller’s investigation of Trump-Russia collusion, perhaps?)
In addition to the Sun-Venus conjunction, there is another important lineup of planets. Mars in Scorpio is conjunct Jupiter for the first two weeks of the month, both in a half square to Saturn. As I wrote last month, the Jupiter-Saturn aspect has to do with government and financial systems. Congress just passed the tax disaster– we could see blowback from that. Mars in the picture with Jupiter and Saturn could manifest as accountable action.
In light of the Mars-Jupiter conjunction making an exact square to Robert Mueller’s Leo Sun, I’m expecting some New Year’s presents from him.
January is also the “once in a blue moon”– when there are two full moons in one month. The next full moon is on January 31st and it is a lunar eclipse, partially visible in the early morning of the continental US.
The year ahead: some highlights of 2018
In addition to Saturn and Pluto both being in Capricorn this year, another major planet enters an earth sign. Uranus enters Taurus in mid-May for the first time in 84 years! Because it is so slow it advances only a couple degrees into Taurus and then it retrogrades back into late Aries in November and December.
Adding to the number of planets in the earth column will definitely highlight the state of our wee blue planet… Some astrologers see Uranus’ entry into Taurus as having tremendous impact on our financial systems. Uranus is a chaotic force, one that breaks downs systems and structures. When it entered Aries several years ago, there was the Arab Spring movement… We should expect some economic and environmental shake-ups when Uranus moves into Taurus.
And 2018 brings some juicy retrogrades!
Mars goes retrograde in Aquarius June 26 til August 27: Expect the unexpected, expect your plans not to go the way you thought they would, it’s about process not outcome.
Venus goes retrograde in Scorpio October 5 til November 16: It’s time to reflect on where our lives are in sync with our values and where they are not.
And as every year, three stretches of Mercury retrograde:
March 23rd – April 15, July 26 -August 19, and November 16- December 6:
Go with the flow and don’t expect linear systems to go the way they usually do…
January 1 924 pm EST Full Moon @ 11’38 Cancer
January 9 Sun-Venus-Pluto conjunction!
January 16 917 pm EST New Moon @ 26’54 Capricorn
January 31 827 am EST Full Moon and Total Eclipse @11’37 Leo
December 3 2017
The times they are a-changing. Full moon today, Mercury retrograde as of this morning, and Saturn enters Capricorn on the 19th
Yes, it took Mercury retrograde to harness my inspiration so I could sit down and write. December is a very important month, astrologically speaking. Mercury turned retrograde at 2:34 this morning, continuing its conjunction with Saturn in the last degrees of Sagittarius. The full moon in Gemini occurred at 10:47 am, making a T-square to Neptune in Pisces. Things are very strange right now, and very unsettled.
This astrologer loves Mercury retrograde usually, but not always when it is in her own sign, and not always when it is conjunct Saturn…
Mercury retrograde sits with Saturn til the 9th, when Mercury retro’s worst traits will be exaggerated, and we can all expect aggravations around travel and planning. That said, I believe that #45 will have a rough time under this retrograde since it crosses over his Moon and then his natal Sun, in late degrees of Sag and Gemini respectively. I expect bigger and more damaging revelations for him when Mercury retrograde crosses the Sun for a few days around the 12th.
But the big news is Saturn, which enters Capricorn December 19th for the first time in 29 years. This is a very significant transit for the entire globe because when Saturn crosses into Capricorn and over the 0-degree Capricorn mark, it crosses over a critical point on the “earth axis.” Two days later the Winter Solstice occurs, when the Sun enters Capricorn on December 21st. Jupiter will be at 15 degrees Scorpio, in a significant half-square to the Sun and Saturn.
What does this mean?!
It signifies a major realignment of social and political structures. It is a turning of the wheel of destiny. Jupiter and Saturn, among other things, have to do with governmental and economic systems. Saturn is said to “rule” Capricorn — it’s the sign it is associated with. Saturn in Capricorn is all about responsibility, goals, groundedness, our backbones. It isn’t necessarily bad — but it sure is big. We all have to sit up straighter and face some earthy realities under this sobering influence.
Because these planets are crossing the earth axis, there will undoubtedly be events playing out on the world stage…
I’ve been looking at this closely and consulting all my worldly and other-worldly sources to understand what’s going on. Here are some possibilities:
Jupiter and Saturn together are rather paternal forces. I think we will see more scrutiny of patriarchy and rape culture.
Jupiter and Saturn have to do with resources, with money as well as natural resources. We could experience more devastating environmental changes and disasters that in turn send economic systems into freefall. A major oil disaster, for example, like the Deepwater Horizon but worse. The market crash that ushered in the Great Depression in 1929 occurred with Saturn in late Sagittarius. We could be heading for a big big fall of that extremely inflated stock market of ours….
Politically speaking, there could be other events that cause the economy to have to restructure. I have been predicting that #45 would fall in January 2018 because of dynamics initiated by Venus retrograde last spring. Special Prosecutor Robert Mueller’s natal Sun falls at 15 degrees Leo, in an exact square to where where Jupiter will be in much of December. He could be the force of accountability that shakes up the entire government over the next month. That could in turn call into question the validity of last year’s election. That too could have economic consequences.
What do we do?
It is hard to know exactly what this all means, but it does suggest to me that the end of the year is a time for taking stock of our internal and external resources. It is a time for long range planning. The Saturn in Capricorn vibe is a sobering one, and also a strong one. Let’s focus on the earthy sense of connection and shared responsibility. Saturn in Capricorn will teach us what it means to share this wee blue planet with each other and everything on it.
December’s Important Dates
December 3 234 am Mercury goes retrograde @ 29’17 Sag
December 3 1047 am Full moon @ 11’40 Gemini
December 18 130 am New Moon @ 26’31 Sagittarius
December 19 1148 pm Saturn enters Capricorn!!
December 21 1129 am Sun enters Capricorn. Winter solstice!
December 22 851 pm Mercury stations Direct @ 13’05 Sagittarius
Have a healthy, happy, and Saturnian holiday season! Happy Winter Solstice!
October 30 2017
And so it begins…Saturn and Chiron usher in a period of much-needed accountability. November continues the reckoning that began in October.
Saturn in Sagittarius has been in a potent 90-degree angle to the asteroid Chiron in Pisces for the last few weeks, coinciding with the revelations about Harvey Weinstein’s sexual violence against women. This square continues through November. There has been a cascade of other accusations against men in power across many fields, men who have used and abused women as a matter of course. At the same time Robert Mueller’s investigation into the Trump campaign’s dealing with the Russians is heating up, and as of this morning, indictments unsealed.
I have been doing a lot of thinking about Saturn and Chiron, in their final square of 2017. Men in power are taking a fall. Finally, we get some accountability, and we have Saturn and Chiron to thank.
Here’s how I understand this combination: Chiron — an asteroid that astrologers consider to be as important as a planet– is a healing influence known as “the wounded healer” in astrology. It often helps mediate the lessons of Saturn and of the outer planets. Keep in mind that in myth Chiron was a centaur, half horse, half human, who through a never-healing injury learned to be a healer and tame his self-aggrandizing ways. After all, centaurs are known for their hellious, rambunctious instinctual behaviors.
We have even more centaur energy occurring right now in the form of Saturn in Sagittarius — Sagittarius is depicted as a centaur as well. Although Sagittarius reaches for the stars, shooting its bow to the heavens in search of wisdom and meaning, Sagittarius has a fiery, instinctual side. It is a big energy, and can be egotistical — as all of the fire signs can be. That which makes fires signs so compelling — the self-confidence, the ability to inspire, the power — can be devastatingly harmful when expressed for the sake of ego and self aggrandizement. (I can say all this because I am a Sag, so I know about the shadow side of fire!)
The New American Oxford Dictionary defines hubris as “excessive pride or self-confidence.” That’s what you get when fire energy runs amok. The hubris of Weinstein and countless other men, the flouting of the laws by Manafort and god knows who else…well, it all looks like hubris to me.
Isn’t it interesting that we have had another crisis of fire in the past month, the fires that ravaged Northern California….
Back to Saturn and Chiron….
Chiron represents a healing force. It is moving through the end of Pisces right now. Pisces is a humanizing energy that is about finding common ground. Chiron in Pisces squaring Saturn emphasizes the universality of the wound that women experience from sexual violence. Chiron is freeing up women’s voices to speak out and support each other in a tremendous act of solidarity and healing. It is inspiring some men to look at themselves.
Chiron, together with Saturn in Sagittarius, is bringing accountability and thank god, some cosmic justice. Saturn in Sag is also about the actual system of justice. We will see what unfolds with Robert Mueller’s ongoing investigation. I expect more indictments….!
And don’t forget that pesky and fabulous stretch of Venus retrograde we had last March and April….
… which is when Trump’s Russia problem erupted in the form of Michael Flynn. Venus retrograde is about the goddess descending to the underworld and preparing for battle. Venus gathered a lot of steam in that underworld last March and April, and we are seeing the results now — from the exposure of widespread sexual assault to Mueller’s investigation of Trumpland. Keep in mind that January 9, 2018 will be the first Sun-Venus conjunction since the retrograde. This is an important time when there are political shake-ups and when leaders fall. As we get closer to that date, we will see more reckoning, more accountability politically and socially.
Saturn in Sagittarius passes our galactic center on November 24th.
Isn’t that cool? Not sure what it means astrologically but I like it. There is a giant black hole at the center of the galaxy. Maybe President #45 and a few others will get sucked into it.
November’s Important Dates
November 4 1:23 am Full moon @ 11’59 Taurus
November 21 10:05 pm Sun enters Sagittarius
November 24 Saturn transits galactic center!
October 1 2017
October is a bit intense: the Sun in Libra aspects Pluto and then Uranus, and the Scorpio Sun joins up with Jupiter. That’s some heavy hitting action…
Pardon my serious tone, folks. Over the next week we get the last blast of Jupiter in Libra opposing Uranus in Aries, bringing surprising events our way. Jupiter will move into Scorpio on the 10th and pull away from Uranus.
The week of October 8th the Libra Sun squares Pluto in Capricorn while Venus and Mars in Virgo square Saturn in Sag. Keep in mind that Libra has a tendency to idealize people and situations… and we have a lot of planets moving in and out of Libra this month.
When the Sun squares Pluto methinks our rose-colored glasses will stop functioning as we continue to face our collective shadow in all kinds of ways– from the threat of nuclear war to that of white supremacy. And Pluto’s hand can be seen in Bali, where that volcano in Bali is getting ready to blow.
But things aren’t all grim. A Mars-Venus conjunction in Virgo? I like that a lot, and am looking forward to some delicious creative work this coming week…
The Sun in Libra opposes Uranus for a few days on the 18th, just in time for the new moon on the 19th. This will being tension and exaggerate the unsettledness we all feel. Keep in mind that Neptune and Uranus have been in a potent half- square for months, keeping us all on edge and in a state of uncertainty. That aspect continues throughout the fall, so we all have to learn to stay as centered as we can. (More yoga!)
The good news is that the planets keep on moving… Everything is always changing, and none of these transits last forever. Saturn is on the move and will enter Capricorn for the first time in 29 years by the end of December, hopefully marking the beginning of the end of populism. (No comments, please, about my own rose- colored glasses!)
Jupiter moves into Scorpio October 10th and the Sun spends a few days with it on the 23rd, giving us a sense of one cycle ending and a new one beginning.
Let’s hope it’s the beginning of the end of the reign of President #45.
October’s important dates
October 5 2:41 pm Full moon at 12’43 Aries
October 23 1:28 am Sun enters Scorpio
September 5 2017
Mercury direct, the Pisces Full Moon and What I learned from the Eclipse
I apologize for being late with my monthly forecast — such is the effect of Mercury retrograde and the swirling
uncertainty around tomorrow’s full moon. Mercury went direct this morning (731 am EDT) and I was finally able to focus and write….Mercury turned direct this morning in a conjunction with Mars in late Leo, at the same degree as the August 21 eclipse.
I am not sure what this means, except that it continues and crystallizes the effects of the eclipse, probably having to do with the US being potentially battered by two hurricanes in two weeks. It could also bring some more self-destructive actions and communications from the 45th president. He is due to announce his rejection of DACA this morning. It is also rumored that the 44th President may have something to say about this. Mercury turning direct might bring some sharp clarity to our political moment.
About this full moon— it is in Pisces, a water sign, and it falls exactly at the same degree as transiting Neptune in Pisces. Neptune rules Pisces. Neptune is the ocean itself as well as the ocean of our unconscious. The past few days have been characterized by uncertainty and a great deal of swirling waters in ourselves as well as in the Caribbean. It is well known that a lot of water moves around at new and full moons. This full moon has triple the intensity. So yes, this is a helluva storm already.
The August 21st eclipse was amazing and I hope you were all able to see some part of it. Although I have been an astrologer for over 40 years (and many endless eons before that I’m sure…) I learned an incredible amount about the Sun and the Moon as I stood on the riverbank of the Tennessee River outside Lenoir City TN.
And I had never seen totality before in my life.
I learned that I take the Sun for granted. The frisson that I felt as the Sun disappeared behind the Moon showed me how unnerving it is to see the Sun disappear. It is scary to have one’s Sun energy occluded in any way. The Sun, after all, represents our core self, our being, our body on earth. It is who we are in a very basic sense. I felt a new appreciation for the power of the Sun, for how blinding it was when even a whisper of its light became visible again as the Moon started to move away. That is the power of our solar selves, of our beautiful hearts. I also saw how impactful it is when one has Saturn or Neptune or Uranus or Pluto conjunct the Sun, what it means to have solar energy covered up or mediated by another planet, especially when that other planet packs an unconscious punch.
And I learned new things about the Moon. During totality, as the light turned into dream-light, shadows became weirdly clear and distinct. This is lunar reality — the light is silvery-dark and yet the shadows are clear. The Moon illuminates what is normally unseen because the Sun’s light is so bright. The lunar reality is a very different orientation, a different reality to live in, equally rich as the solar one and yet a bit harder to grasp. I loved how the shadows were the clearest during the eclipse! I also came to a deeper understanding of what it means to have another planet conjunct the Moon, especially if that planet blocks the energy of the Moon in any way.
And of course — any planet that is conjunct the Sun or Moon may initially start out as a block but then can be transformed into a powerful unification, just as we saw during the eclipse, as the Sun and Moon together lifted us all up in a collective experience of awe.
September’s important dates
September 5 731 am Mercury turns direct
September 6 304 am Full Moon at 13’53 Pisces, conjunct Neptune
September 20 121 am New Moon at 27’27 Virgo
September 22 403 pm Happy Fall! Fall Equinox– Sun enters Libra
August 12 2017
Charlottesville, North Korea, Mercury retrograde, and the upcoming eclipse
I write this with a heavy heart. Not even two weeks have gone by since my last post on July 31st in which I wrote about the upcoming August 21 eclipse and the likelihood of a turning point or set of watershed events for the United States. All of the events of the past week, from Trump’s bellicose exchange with Kim Jong-un to today’s tragedy in Charlottesville, are part of the sphere of influence of the eclipse.
Here we are on August 12th, with Mercury going retrograde at 901 pm, and the watershed events just keep piling up. Let’s call Charlottesville for what it is — domestic terrorism perpetrated by the white supremacist base that Donald Trump cultivated and made promises to throughout his campaign, and who he repeatedly has called to action with his dog whistles since becoming President. Today’s events were tragic and awful and evoke the nasty underbelly of US history that many of us whites would prefer to ignore, the underbelly of racism and anti-Semitism. We cannot ignore it, now that David Duke has said publicly that white supremacists are just doing what Trump said he was going to do as President, to “take back America.”
Here we are, looking straight at our shadow as we march towards the eclipse. Although racism has been a constant in US society, Charlottesville unmasked it. This is definitely a watershed moment, a crossroads. What are we going to do? Are we going to unite around justice, equity, and inclusion, and really work for it, or go back to watching Game of Thrones and think it will all work out?
This is what I meant about this eclipse — it is going to bring us face to face with who we are and who we want to be — personally and collectively. Can we live up to the ideal of the Aquarian moon in the US’ chart? It is a kick in the pants to do just that. As of tonight even some Republican senators are demanding that Trump call today’s fatality the result of domestic terrorism and call the people who marched on Charlottesville what they are– white supremacists.
And this occurs after a week of inflammatory and belligerent tweets and statements by Trump about North Korea
I’m sure many of us woke up every day this week wondering if a nuclear war had begun. I am deeply grateful that so far it hasn’t. I have been looking closely at the charts of Trump, Kim Jong-un, North Korea, and the US. Interestingly — and kind of frighteningly, in fact– Kim Jong-un, Trump and North Korea all share some astrological aspects. Kim and North Korea both have a Mercury-Neptune conjunction, and Trump has those two planets in a square. They all have a penchant for hyperbole — that’s the nice way to say it. We already know that Trump lies. Kim and Trump are masters of the message. So there is a real danger here that the war of words could escalate into actual warring behavior, especially under the influence of Mercury retrograde.
And Kim Jong-un is no joke, as a ruthless military kind of guy. He is a Capricorn undergoing a long and impactful Pluto transit, which means he is coming into his power. He is also playing around with his power, flexing his muscles. He is a fighter with a Mars-Pluto conjunction, so he knows how to maneuver and fight.
As I wrote on July 31st, the eclipse falls right on Trump’s Leo Ascendant and Mars, and opposes the Moon of the US’s chart. When I wrote that I was worried about an attack of some sort. Let’s hope I’m wrong! The 8-degrees Virgo Mercury retrograde in the eclipse falls exactly opposite the Midheaven of North Korea. I don’t know what that means but it could mean a feint on their part, a bait and switch.
North Korea has Saturn in the 3rd House of its chart, which is where Trump’s Saturn is in his current birthday chart. When I analyzed his birthday chart in my June commentary, I spoke of Trump’s growing isolation, mistrust of his peers, and resistance to information. In the chart of a country, Saturn in the 3rd can be about tremendous isolation and mistrust (“doesn’t play well with others.”) In a strange way Trump’s behavior mirrors that of North Korea.
I expect that over the next two weeks things between the US and North Korea could come to a dangerous brink. This eclipse is pushing us as a nation to examine whether we want to engage in nuclear war. This is another crossroads for us as a nation.
Other events are likely to unfold that feel equally brink-ish.
Remember what I wrote below about eclipses. Not only are they times of deep change and transition, but the turning point is often stimulated by unexpected information… And, Mercury is about to go retrograde. Information could go haywire over the next few weeks in scary and unpredictable and maybe not all together bad ways…
> Robert Mueller is seeking to investigate people in the West Wing. This could get interesting!
>Trump can’t restrain himself — ever. His lack of control over his impulses and his need to tweet is already making him vulnerable to criticism within his own party. If he continues to make foreign policy through tweeting, not only could very real disaster ensue, but he could be painting himself into a corner.
>His inability to distance himself from white supremacists also stands to box him into a corner.
> Leaks and more leaks are likely to happen…
As I wrote below, the August 21st eclipse falls on Trump’s chart and the chart of the US in very significant ways. Put on your seat belts, folks, because the blows are just going to keep coming…..And remember to find ways to take care of yourself in the midst of all this craziness. Remember that Venus retrograde set things in motion back in March and April that we are seeing unfold now. Venus retrograde is all about values and interconnectedness. And the US is heading into its first Pluto return as we approach 2020. Time to deal with our shadow. The upcoming eclipse is pushing us to do just that.
July 31 2017
Get ready for (more) change! Or, everything you need to know for the August 21 solar eclipse
Well, August would be a very chill month but for the eclipse. The August 21 eclipse, dubbed “The Great American Eclipse,” even outstrips Mercury going retrograde on the 12th in terms of astrological importance… For those of you who live in the continental US, I hope you’ve got your special glasses or cardboard box ready and are all set to go watch it… This is the first eclipse to make exclusive landfall in the US since 1776. I find that a bit unsettling, as I find the fact that the eclipse falls right on Donald Trump’s Ascendant and Mars. But I get ahead of myself….Allow me to do a bit of Sagittarian explication.
Why is this eclipse such a big deal? Don’t eclipses happen all the time?
Yes, eclipses happen all the time, and yes, they are a big deal. Astrologically, they signify breaking points, points that push us into transition and transformation, watershed moments — this is the case whether we can see them in our part of the world or not. Solar eclipses fall on new moons, and lunar eclipses fall on full moons, and in fact, the August 7th full moon is a partial lunar eclipse. The degree and sign of the eclipse is very important, just as the degrees and signs of every new and full moon are as well.
This solar eclipse falls at 28’53 Leo. The signs that eclipses fall in come in clusters and we are in a two year stretch of Leo/Aquarius eclipses in 2017 and 2018. These clusters emphasize themes in our lives, and each eclipse pushes us forward in a way that is consistent with the theme. The Leo/Aquarius emphasis is about personal self- expression and collective responsibility. Interesting, huh?
Astrologers believe that depending on how one’s natal chart interacts with the eclipse, one can be pushed into a major change by events and information that arise outside of oneself. So if parts of your chart fall near to or make significant angles to 28’53 Leo, get ready. If your birthday falls close to August 21st, get ready. Get ready to have to jump forward into something with both feet. Get ready to have to let go of an old way of being and doing.
Need something new in your life? This eclipse is for you!
Since solar eclipses always fall on new moons, they really emphasize the “new beginnings” energy of a new moon. A solar eclipse is like a super-charged new moon, generating a great deal of creative potential whose impact will last far longer than that of a regular new moon.
So if you have been careening around all summer like many of us thanks to the Uranus-Neptune shifting sands, unsure what the next steps are in your life, home, work, relationship, etc. this eclipse is likely to push you towards something new.
The impact of eclipses is felt in a collective and personal way so of course they are important for the body politic. For hundreds of years astrologers have interpreted eclipses as harbingers of political turmoil. I have not made a study of eclipses the way that some of my fellow astrologers have (For two excellent sites, check out Eric Francis’ http://www.planetwaves.net and Susan Miller’s https://www.astrologyzone.com/) but it’s clear to me that this August one is a biggie and well worth paying attention to. This one is especially significant for the US for a number of reasons, not the least of which is its coast to coast visibility. It makes important angles to the chart of the US and to Trump’s natal chart. Even if it didn’t, it does fall in Leo, which in mundane astrology involves kings and rulers (and presidents)– astrologers agree that this is reason enough to think Trump could be negatively affected.
Think about it: During the eclipse the Moon will cross in front of the Sun for two hours. The Sun in Leo will be obscured, while the Moon holds sway. The Moon is about the public. Symbolically speaking the patriarch will be in darkness. I think this signifies tremendous blowback at Donald Trump, perhaps leading to his fall. The fall may not happen August 21st but there will be a set of watershed events that concern the public’s view of him.
Let’s be clear: his Administration is a mess. What Venus retrograde began revealing on March 4th will come to some kind of head with this eclipse. Things are already unraveling for him, and this astrologer believes his tenure will come to an end by the time Venus is conjunct the Sun on January 9th 2018– the first Venus -Sun conjunction since the retrograde this spring.
But back to the eclipse…..The Moon in the US’ s birth chart falls at 27 degrees Aquarius, exactly opposite the location of the Sun and Moon of the eclipse. In the context of the US’s birth chart, the Aquarian Moon is also about the public.
The eclipse falls exactly on Donald Trump’s 29 degree Leo Ascendant and 26 degree Leo Mars. I suspect he will feel provoked and lash out (yes, what else is new) in an even more spectacularly self-destructive way. He is still under a brutal Saturn transit to his natal Moon. Eclipses do have to do with unexpected information sparking a crisis or change of plans… ( Leaks, anyone?) Oh — and I forgot to mention that Mercury will be retrograde.
But a cautionary word — the Mars action and overall Uranus-Neptune instability could indicate a greater crisis in the US’s relationships with other countries which he could cause or mishandle… Let’s hope that the eclipse doesn’t bring a different sort of watershed event to US soil than the myriad ones we have been dealing with…we are coming up on the 12th anniversary of the humanitarian disaster called Hurricane Katrina, after all.
Instead let’s focus on perhaps a new beginning, an Aquarian commitment to humanitarian and liberatory values and policies, rather than bellicose posturing or another war.
Deep breaths, everyone. And remember to go with the flow of Mercury retrograde!
August’s important dates
August 12 9:01 pm Mercury goes retrograde at 11’38 Virgo (til Sept 5th) Mercury retrograde in Virgo?! That could be dicey in terms of planning and communication…
August 21 2:30 pm New Moon and Solar eclipse at 28’53 Leo
August 22 6:21 pm Sun enters Virgo
July 2 2017
July is kinda crazy, kinda changeable and uncertain. Everyone seems to be in transition and moving somewhere. We have no choice but to go with the flow because there is no way to figure it out, thanks to the Uranus-Neptune half-square.
But that said, Donald’s year is unfolding just the way this astrologer said it would. It’s Groundhog Day — just read my June column below! To tantalize you here is part of what I wrote last month:
” The chart shows that the more stressed he gets, the nastier he will get and the more he will lie. He will attempt more overtly to play to the nasty instincts of his base. He has the same powerful media manipulation combination in this chart that he has in his birth chart but in his solar return it looks like his lack of impulse control will be his downfall…”
To wit, Trump’s twitter frenzy over the past few days about commentators Mika and Joe, and his ongoing attacks on the media… Need I say more?
Oh but I must say more, actually. This month brings some bellicose and patriarchal transits to bear. I know we’ve been seeing a lot of that kind of thing lately but there could
be more. There is major Pluto action on the July 9th Full Moon and then mid-month, Mars catches up to the Sun in Cancer and squares Uranus. Things could get wild. The Sun of the US is of course in Cancer, so I always get nervous with Sun-Mars activity in Cancer. Could be kinda martial and protectionistic. God knows I can be paranoid…
July’s Important Dates (EDT)
July 9 00:08 am Full moon @ 17’09 Capricorn
July 23 5:47 am New Moon @0’44 Leo
Next month …More on the big solar eclipse August 21st.
June 2 2017
Oh me oh my oh, June is just plain weird… and it’s a really rough month for the Donald.
I know, we thought things couldn’t get crazier but I hate to tell you, they will. June unfolds with wacky combinations that offer serious stress and pressure with unexpected change and slippy-slidey outcomes. Because the Sun is in Gemini most of the month it makes aspects to other mutable planets such as Neptune in Pisces and Saturn in Sagittarius. Mercury in Gemini does the same thing, and right now Mars at the tail end of Gemini is still opposing Saturn very close to the earth axis, the axis of world events. Mars and Saturn together are intense, and I don’t know about you but I have a feeling of a constant drumbeat of global and Trumpian drama banging away in the background all the damn time…. Yup. That’s what’s going on.
So, dear readers, I have to respond to this drumbeat and discuss the political situation in astrological detail. Isn’t it occupying every waking minute anyway?
The Saturn in Sag aspects this month will pit the forces of various Senate investigations and the law against Neptunian truth-dodging by the Liar-in-Chief, especially around the full moon in Sagittarius on June 9. We all will be glued to the media — another manifestation of Neptune — as the Uranian chaos of the presidency is livestreamed and playing out on Twitter.
Donald Trump has been under some very difficult Saturn transits. The gist is pressure, work, stress, obstacles, things not going well. Saturn in Sag has been sitting very close to his Sag Moon and opposite his Gemini Sun and Uranus, and to boot, Saturn opposes his Sun on his birthday. He is very cranky. He has the Sun -Saturn effect all year in fact because it is in his birthday chart, the chart cast for his 2017 birthday which gives us a picture of the year ahead. Saturn is in Sagittarius which has to do with the law, with justice and also with dogma. Saturn itself can have to do with accountability.
Many of us geeky astrologers have cast his birthday chart to see what’s happening for him, and therefore for us and for the world. (Keep in mind that I am hopelessly biased in this matter, but I think you know that.) His birthday chart is a hot mess. It depicts someone who will increasingly isolate himself from peers and family. He will continue to be closed to learning, to science, to information. The shadow side of Gemini and the 3rd house (where Saturn falls in his birthday chart) is isolation and fear of new information, fear of the unknown. God knows the policies he is attempting to enact are throwbacks to the last century…
The chart shows that the more stressed he gets, the nastier he will get and the more he will lie. He will attempt more overtly to play to the nasty instincts of his base. He has the same powerful media manipulation combination in this chart that he has in his birth chart but in his solar return it looks like his lack of impulse control will be his downfall. And it also looks like he’s got major legal problems.
He is heading for a fall and we have Venus retrograde to thank!
During the recent stretch of Venus retrograde from March 4th til April 15, forces were at work under the surface that are on high boil this month. Venus retrograde was indeed preparing for battle, the battle to hold Trump accountable.
It is significant that this week, Venus direct is at its greatest western elongation, in as far west an angle from the Sun as it can get. On June 3rd Venus starts moving southward and it meets up with the Sun in Capricorn on January 9, 2018, at which point it moves from being a morning star to an evening one.
I believe Trump will be gone by January. Things set in motion during Venus retrograde often come to a head at the first Venus-Sun conjunction after the retrograde. Leaders often fall at this key astrological moment.
In addition, the US has two major astrological events heading our way: a total solar eclipse this August 21 and the Pluto return approaching by 2020.
On August 21st, a total solar eclipse will occur across the United States. Although eclipses occur frequently, a solar eclipse that is exclusively visible in the continental US has not occurred since 1776. Seriously? (There was a 1918 eclipse visible on both coasts but it fell mainly in the ocean…) It occurs on the last degree of Leo, making a 9th house opposition to the 27 degree 3rd house Moon in the US birth chart. It also falls on Trump’s Ascendant.
Eclipses are major events where a public dynamic affects us all personally. This eclipse will signify a major crisis point and watershed moment for the public (Moon) and its view of and relationship to Trump (his Ascendant). I will discuss this more fully in my August column.
The US’ Pluto return? Pluto is in Capricorn now, and its position in the chart of the US is at 27 degrees Capricorn, in the 2nd house. Pluto has already crossed the line into our 2nd house — and starts getting close to Pluto’s original position in 2019 and 2020. The second house is all about values. We are returning to the core wounds and having to transform our shadow. The 2016 election was in fact all about a values crisis.
Moving right along… Happy Summer Solstice! June 21 is around the corner!
June’s Important dates
June 9 9:11 am Full moon at 18’53 Sagittarius
June 21 00:24 am Sun enters Cancer– Summer Solstice!
June 23 10:32 pm New moon at 2’47 Cancer
May 2 2017
Mercury turns direct May 3 but sticks with Uranus for a wacky and unusually long conjunction….
Oh, does the fun ever stop? This astrologer is happy to see the end of this Mercury retrograde — it has been a pain in the neck! But here’s what’s interesting: Mercury in Aries is almost at a standstill for the first two weeks of May and sits on top of Uranus. Mercury is one fast little planet so it is odd to have such a long transit. The Mercury and Uranus influence is a bit intense (and it’s in Aries, after all…), stirring up a lot of wild and crazy ideas and a bit of anxiety as well. So don’t be surprised to feel keyed up under this transit, but truly, it gives us all the capacity to be highly creative and bold, even iconoclastic, in our thinking. It does foster a tendency to speak before we think…
To add to our angst, there is a small but significant angle between Saturn and Pluto this month, stoking our fears about nuclear war
I don’t believe it will happen but our anxieties are running high between the Mercury -Uranus angst and the Saturn-Pluto angst. North Korea was formed under a Saturn-Pluto conjunction, and the current Mercury -Uranus transit creates a context for a certain amount of thoughtlessness and provocative words.
Interesting astrological nugget: Donald Trump and Kim Jong-un both share strong Mercury-Neptune contacts in their birth charts. They are masters of media manipulation. (Check out this great line from Evan Osnos’ How Trump Could Get Fired article in the May 8 New Yorker: “Media is Trump’s “drug of choice,” Sam Nunberg, an adviser on his campaign, told me recently. ‘He doesn’t drink. He doesn’t do drugs. His drug is himself.’”) This quote says it all. Kim Jong-un also loves playing with image and message. Between their shared propensity for provocation and the surprise factor of Mercury-Uranus, anything could happen…
There is always a bright side: Chiron is in a square to Saturn so its healing influence is also in play
Have you noticed? There is a lot of resistance going on! From protests at Town Hall meetings to the Climate March, the Science March, and yesterday’s May Day protests, we are in the streets. Sanctuary cities are defending themselves. The Movement for Black Lives has put out the call to link racial justice, immigrant rights,and the fight for $15 minimum wage in its “Beyond the Moment” campaign.
Chiron in Pisces in its square to Saturn is providing some accountability and helping give voice to movements for justice. It’s also helping us use a myriad of strategies to further a democratic vision. Yay.
And since Saturn is always needing some love, a shout-out to Saturn’s rings:
May’s Important Dates
May 3 1234 pm Mercury goes direct!
May 10 544 pm Full Moon @ 20’24 Scorpio
May 20 432 pm Sun enters Gemini
May 25 346 pm New Moon @ 4’47 Gemini
April 2 2017
We are just about 2/3 of the way into the 40-day transit of Venus retrograde (yes, how very Lenten, as it happens this time!) and an interesting time it has been, no? Venus is now behind the Sun, meaning that the Sun is moving forward in Aries while Venus has already moved into the early degrees of Aries. Tonight Venus moves into Pisces and squares Saturn in Sagittarius. It remains in this square for the entire month, even after it turns direct on the 15th.
As they say: We aint seen nothin’ yet
As I wrote last month, Venus retrograde is well known to be a time of tremendous political instability. I thought Mr Trump was likely to have a rough time, and indeed he is. The few days when the Sun and Venus are conjunct (in the same place) are particularly critical — those days were March 24-26, when Trumpcare went down in flames. The day Venus turned retrograde, March 4th, was the first day Trump and his minions began to accuse President Obama of having surveilled him. So now we are in the really politically volatile period when Venus is behind the Sun, when the Mayans thought Venus became a warrior…
Okay, let me enumerate the instabilities coming to a head…
the FBI investigation of the Trump campaign’s connections to Russia’s hacking activities
> the multiple egregious conflicts of interest
> dissension and disarray among Republicans
> Democrats threatening to filibuster the Gorsuch vote
> the possibility of a budget stalemate and government shutdown
During April we have other influences gaining steam, not the least of which is the Venus-Saturn square which on some level has to do with accountability and paying the piper. Venus retrograde is also well known for a kind of “buyer ‘s remorse” when it comes to big investments or purchases.
Ahem. The Republicans seem to be having some regret about investing their political capital in the Trump-Bannon administration. (Interestingly, the Venus Saturn square directly aspects Mike Pence’s Gemini Moon.)
And– Mercury goes retrograde on April 9th. It starts its retrograde pass in Taurus then by the 20th enters Aries. There is one week where Mercury and Venus will both be retrograde. Hmm. Love that!
April 11th has a hellious full moon in Libra on the Cardinal (earth) axis and triggering Uranus and Pluto. There are likely to be big global events. Let’s hope that Venus’ trip to the underworld doesn’t lead to more US- caused civilian deaths in the Middle East or any other warmongering on Trump’s part. Uranus and the Sun are conjunct in Aries during the week of the 11th. That will be an edgy week, filled with instability and change.
Could this be the beginning of the end of the Trump Administration?!
Yay Venus retrograde! Yay Venus-Saturn square!
Disclaimer: I am willing to admit that my own wishful thinking may be getting the better of any astrological distance I might have… And, I have had much too much espresso today (since my dominatrix cat made me get up way too early…) and I’m willing to go out on yet another limb.
April’s Important Dates — eastern time
April 9 7:15 pm Mercury goes retrograde at 4’47 Taurus
Remember — no big decisions and go with the flow!
April 15 6:19 am Venus goes direct at 26’57 Pisces
April 19 5:28 pm Sun enters Taurus
March 1 2017
Venus goes retrograde on March 4th for six weeks…This transit is important personally and politically
Let me get this out of the way — I love Venus retrograde. It only happens every 18 months, and its action occurs more on the plane of reflection than action. This makes it very different from Mars or Mercury retrograde so stop yer whingeing!
Remember that Venus has a complex sphere of action– it has to do with relatedness and relationship and the core values that undergird our sense of being connected to the world around us. Venus also has to do with beauty and art, ideals and idealization. Across this spectrum of meaning you can see its dual role of ruling both Taurus and Libra. Venus is an all-round great goddess.
What does it mean personally when Venus goes retrograde?
Venus retrograde is a 40 day process during which we reflect on our core values and whether we are living in sync with them or not. That process can have some uncomfortable moments, especially if there is a dissonance between what we really want and what we are doing. The discomfort can be starkest after the Sun and Venus cross paths and Venus gets “behind” the Sun. That point occurs this time on March 25th. The remaining 20 days of the transit are kind of a trip through the underworld with Venus as our guide. That’s why the ancient Mayans — who tracked Venus’ complex orbit– thought that during this part of her journey she changed into a warrior. (More on this below in my analysis of the political impact of Venus retrograde.) You can imagine that what Venus defends during this period are our core values.
Venus ends its retrograde on April 15th. More on this in my April column, but it ends in a spectacular square to Saturn.
How do we deal with Venus retrograde?
First, no big decisions. No breakups. Sit in your discomfort.
Second, reflect on what was going on in your life the last time Venus retrograded in Aries — March/April 2009. Probably some of those issues are raising their wee little heads but in a different way.
Third, Venus can have to do with material resources. During the retrograde period, we are all struggling with values and the literal value of things. Avoid big purchases or outlays. Take stock of what is really enough.
Fourth, enjoy this period. It’s always interesting when the unconscious side of a planet is on the surface. Pay attention to your dreams and urges.
Politically, Venus retrograde is a whole other thing…..Or not.
Because this process has to do with core values there can be a similar awareness of a misalignment between our governments and what we want. Venus retrograde is famous for being a time of great political instability when leaders fall and diplomacy breaks down. The ancient Mayans thought that the period when Venus gets behind the Sun (the last 20 days) is a time for preparing for war.
We also need to look back at March-April 2009 when Venus retrograded in Aries and see what was happening and what has been left unresolved. At that time in the US there were major repercussions in banking from the 2008 crash. There were legal advances to secure gay marriage. North Korea was testing long-range missiles. There was a major earthquake in Italy in this period, and also an Alaskan volcano became active. Senator Arlen Spector switched parties and became a Democrat.
This Venus retrograde moves through the 4th house of the US– the homeland as it were.
I know we are already in a highly unstable period because of the Trump effect. Venus retrograde could be a very difficult transit for him. Like I said, leaders can fall during or right after Venus retrograde.
March 12 10:55 am Full Moon at 22’13 Virgo
March 20 6:30 am Sun enters Aries — Spring Equinox!
March 25th Sun conjunct Venus retrograde
March 27 10:58 pm New Moon at 7’37 Aries
February 5, 2017
So things are a bit tumultuous… The chaos continues in February but with two eclipses in the mix!
I apologize for being late. Life is very demanding right now. I have been busy stirring up trouble because that’s what kind of girl I am.
The Jupiter-Uranus opposition is full of surprises. Yes, it’s chaotic and stressful, and yet — it is not 100% bad. Could any of us have predicted that the resistance to Donald Trump would be so swift and spontaneous — and effective? And Jupiter goes retrograde on the 6th, which will give us all some breathing space, I think. We will be able to be less reactive. I’m looking forward to that!
Resistance is good! I love that scientists are holding a march on Earth Day, and even constitutional lawyers are talking about marching this summer…
Saturn and Chiron and Justice, or, aren’t we grateful for the ACLU right now?
You gotta love lawyers! Last month I wrote that Saturn and Chiron may save the day, and we are seeing that play out just a tad. Remember that Saturn in Sag has everything to do with the law, not as in the police but in systems of justice, theories of justice. I was very glad to see the ACLU get right on the case last weekend when Trump rolled out its ban on Muslim immigrants. I am glad for the Federal judge who just ruled a national temporary injunction against the ban, and I’m grateful for the Ninth Circuit Court of Appeals. Chiron and Saturn are indeed working together to exercise a kind of accountability. They are in a square angle all month and much of this year. Yay!
There is a penumbral lunar eclipse on the February 10th Leo full moon.
This is an eclipse where we see a shadow drift across and around the moon. It will be visible in North America! Get out there and see it!
Remember that eclipses intensify the action of the lunation. This particular full moon has nudgy little Mars aspects that could be bellicose and difficult. Mars is in Aries this month, and given the Trump Administration’s proclivities, that worries me a bit because Mars can have an aggressive side.
But the solar eclipse on February 26 is even more powerful
This eclipse falls on the February 26 Pisces new moon, visible only in parts of Africa and South America. The planetary lineup around the 26th is wild: Mars in Aries catches up to Uranus in Aries and they both oppose Jupiter. This all occurs on the Earth axis. I expect the Trump administration to do something really provocative and belligerent. But– this solar eclipse falls a couple of degrees away from Neptune, also in Pisces. This is a lot of watery influence. Neptune and Pisces have to do with love and healing, with oneness, the interconnectedness of all life. Neptune and Pisces are also about deception. So there could be a crisis with the media and with media representation.
Most importantly, these planetary configurations set up an extraordinary contrast between watery healing energy and fractious, self aggrandizing actions. February 26 will be a critical day for healing the planet — however you do that, be sure to do it. I’m serious. Mark your calendar.
This is a rather amazing set up to Venus going retrograde on March 4th…
Ooh! I love Venus retrograde! And I have written before that this six-week transit is an interesting time of self-reflection. Politically it operates a bit differently, and is known to be a time when leaders are vulnerable.
More on this in my March column!
Important February Dates
February 10 734 pm EST Lunar Eclipse, Full Moon at 22’28 Leo
February 18 632 am EST Sun enters Pisces
February 26 11:59 am EST New Moon and Solar Eclipse at 8’12 Pisces
December 31 2016
2017 shapes up to be a very interesting year…The main influences are quite contradictory, both this month and going forward. Jupiter and Uranus are in a tight opposition on the earth axis til mid-March, and Saturn squares Chiron for most of the year.
First, Jupiter and Uranus.
This combination can have to do with a kind of sudden opportunity, sudden turns of events that are not necessarily bad, just surprising. Uranus has been in Aries since 2011, and it ushered in a period of discontent and uprising, most notably the “Arab Spring” period. Also keep in mind that for much of the past 5 years, Uranus in Aries made a square to Pluto in Capricorn, bringing to the surface terrific acts of violence and transformation all over the globe, illuminating repression and resistance.
Uranus is the chaos principle. It represents sudden change, innovation, a desire for change. It can be extreme and polarizing. It wants to destroy what Saturn has built. As the ruling planet of Aquarius, it is a planet that operates in the realm of ideas and ideologies.
Then here comes Jupiter, the great “benificent.” Jupiter, the ruling planet of Sagittarius, has to do with expansiveness, excess, fulfillment, and completion. It also has to do with luck, fate, destiny, the turning of the wheel of fortune. As the ruling planet of Sag, its realm also includes belief systems, philosophy, religious ideas. It is big big big energy.
So Jupiter in Libra opposing Uranus in Aries means…?
Since Jupiter is in Libra, an air sign, and Uranus is in Aries, a fire sign, there is a way that air fans the flames of fire. Fire and air qualities are really exaggerated in this transit – a lot of hot air, in other words. A lot of instinctive action, surprising action, action to meet the needs of the self, potential polarization of facts and beliefs… the Aries-Libra axis is about the self and the Other, and the Other in Libra’s context is idealized, perfect. There is a danger that we will pretend to care about others but act in our own self interest under this transit.
Which brings me to Donald Trump. The first three months of his presidency will be under this Jupiter-Uranus influence –self-aggrandizing, sudden, big and bold. We are all off-kilter, waiting to see what he will do next. Will he tweet his way through foreign policy? Will he restart a nuclear arms race? Will he …. ? (fill in the blank.) We don’t know what he will do, because this influence is very unpredictable, and since his own natal chart is strongly Uranian, he very much embodies the erraticness of that planet.
But along come Saturn and Chiron… thank god!
I never thought I would find myself saying “Saturn will save the day” but I just think it might…. So Saturn has been in Sagittarius since September 2015, and as a Sagittarius myself it has been very difficult to assess what it means beyond the personal…. Sag is a sign that has to do with wisdom, with intuiting the grand meaning of everything in the universe. This can show up as an intuitive sense of the magic in everything or as a very intellectual, left brain cut- and -dried perception of reality. Just the facts, ma’am. Sag can be bombastic and passionate. Saturn in this sign can crystallize the passions and beliefs into rigidly-held ideas. The rise of right wing populism over the past few years — I hate to say it — is probably a reflection of Saturn in Sag and Uranus in Aries. Saturn in Sag can act to constrict fiery intuitive perception and make it very narrow.
Saturn is approaching its last year in Sag and will enter Capricorn next January. It will spend most of this year dancing in a square to Chiron in Pisces. Chiron, known as the “wounded healer,” forces a deep integrated healing on whatever planet it aspects.
Since the world seems to be suffering from a big fire-and- air crisis, Saturn and Chiron may bring some accountability. Sagittarius also has to do with justice, lest we forget. Saturn and Chiron may help us all see that fire and air aren’t enough — we need earth and water to humanize our relationships to each other and the planet itself. I am looking forward to 2018, when Saturn enters Capricorn and Uranus enters Taurus…
Venus retrograde is a very interesting little transit. It occurs once every 18 months and last only 6 weeks. It is a time in which our understanding becomes very clear about where our lives are in sync with our values and where they are not. So personally, it is always a fruitful transit.
Politically it is a whole other thing, however. Leaders fall. Wars start. Diplomacy goes haywire. Interestingly, this spring, Venus starts its retrograde pass in Aries but ends it in late Pisces — conjunct Chiron and squaring Saturn. More on this in my March column…
So I can say definitively that I have no real idea how things will go for our blue ocean planet this year– only that change is certain.
January’s Important dates
January 8 4:44 am Mercury turns direct at 28’51 Sagittarius
January 12 6:35 am Full Moon at 22’27 Cancer
January 27 7:08 pm New Moon at 8’15 Aquarius
December 1, 2016
Ah yes, Mercury retrograde! You gotta love it! Such a wee little planet and it can wreak such havoc. It goes retrograde in Capricorn on December 19th, and to make it more interesting, it retrogrades as it is moving across Pluto. As we know Pluto can act as a repressive force but in this case with Mercury turning retrograde, it looks to me as though it could mean revelation. Will a cover up be revealed, perhaps….
And yes, it is the day the Electoral College votes. I just want to remind us of an interesting astrological fact: on Election Day, November 7, 2000, when George W Bush “won” the election despite Gore winning the popular vote, Mercury was turning from retrograde to direct. The days that Mercury turns around are very chunky days. Just sayin’, something interesting could happen or be revealed having to do with voting and recounts and the like… Keep an eye out on December 19.
Mercury also figures prominently in the December 29th New Moon, which falls at 7’59 Capricorn. Mercury retrograde is also at 7′ degrees Capricorn that day. Hmm. That will be one helluva new moon, great for inspiration.
Generally this month there are many planets in air signs and many in fire signs, making for a great deal of hot air.
My advice is to keep the Sagittarian fires of hope and inspiration burning and avoid getting too heady. The shadow sides of Sagittarius and Aquarius (and we have ample planets in both signs this month) can involve being dogmatic or overly ideological. Too much headiness and one loses track of a sense of meaning. We all need to watch out for that.. And Jupiter and Uranus are opposed this month and until mid-March. This wild combination emphasizes erraticness, unpredictability, individual freedom, and and perhaps self-aggrandizement. (Hmm, who does that sound like?) We should all expect the unexpected in our own personal lives as well as globally.
Speaking of hot air, we may want to keep an eye out on December 13, the date of the upcoming Gemini full moon, which falls smack on top of Trump’s Sun, Moon and Uranus.
The Antidote for Hot Air? Saturn in Sag squares Chiron in Pisces this month.
In other words, stay grounded. Do your work in the world and keep breathing. Do yoga or some other spiritual practice. Engage in resistance and keep an open heart. We all have to work at staying calm– with Uranus hanging out on the earth axis we are all a bit raggedy.
This upcoming stretch of Mercury retrograde will be very helpful for all of us so we can develop clarity about next steps and tune into our deep internal knowing.
December 13 707 pm Full Moon at 22’26 Gemini
December 19 556 am Mercury goes retrograde at 15’06 Capricorn
December 21 545 am Sun enters Capricorn. Winter Solstice!
December 29 154 am New moon at 7’59 Capricorn conjunct Mercury retro
November 16 2016
At least I wasn’t the only one who didn’t see this coming. I really do apologize, although my incorrect astrological analysis is the least of our worries. I got it wrong for the same reason I don’t attempt to interpret my own chart — I don’t have enough distance to see things clearly. In the case of my election prediction I felt there was so much at stake that I had no perspective. I also was in the denial afforded by white privilege that made me not be able to really believe that 49 million people would actually vote for “that giant orange marmalade hairball” (to quote Samantha Bee) and reinstate the Confederacy.
Because that is what happened — make no mistake about it. Like many of us, I have moved from grief to shock to rage and back to grief again, and finally to a renewed commitment to action.
Pluto. How could I forget?
Over the past few years of the Uranus-Pluto square that transited the Cancer Sun of the US chart, I believed that the wounds of enslavement and the divisions of the Civil War could come back to haunt us in a very violent and divisive way. In this same period we saw the resurgence of a new civil rights movement through Black Lives Matter. As Uranus moved away from Pluto and from the US Sun I thought the most shattering part was over. Silly me. (See what I mean? Denial.)
Pluto is very slow, and is at 15 degrees Capricorn, still in a very close opposition to the 13 degree Cancer Sun of the US. The shadow side of US history is exposed. We live in a very divided country, part of which wants to go back to 1850 and part that wants to move forward as an inclusive society.
Pluto is at 27 degrees Capricorn in the chart of the US, and so we will have our own first “Pluto return” starting in late 2020, when Pluto gets within 3 degrees of its position in 1776. It is in the 2nd house of the chart — which is about values. Keep in mind that Pluto is the slowest of slow planets and its orbit is over 200 years.. So who gets to live long enough to have a Pluto return? Only countries… and Yoda.
Remember that Pluto’s action is that of life, death, and rebirth. It is unbelievably painful and traumatic and it always involves sacrifice and loss. But the Phoenix does rise out of the ashes. (Look at that heart image on that photo of Pluto!)
Over the next several years we have the opportunity to burn through our past and make things right. This moment contains the opportunity to create a truly broad-based, inclusive liberation movement to resist the Trump regime and all it represents and to create a liberatory society.
This kind of resistance movement is already happening: through the recent post-election protests, the ongoing resistance at Standing Rock, and the planned Million Women’s March, through inspiring think-pieces about organizing and through hundreds of new people joining Showing Up for Racial Justice (SURJ). http://www.showingupforracialjustice.org/ This period we are in is terrifying and exciting at the same time. It will be hard and it will take a lot of work over a long period. So do not despair. Feel sad and grieving and rageful, yes. But reach out to others. Read. Take action. Show up with others. If you want to know how, check out this excellent piece by media activist Doyle Canning: https://medium.com/@doylecanning/nunca-mas-people-powered-strategy-in-the-time-of-trump-a10c214b05db#.hp4edtquu. And sign the pledge to stand with women of color leaders at https://our100.org/
Back to the astrology of “that giant orange marmalade hairball”… The Donald has some challenging transits ahead.
Trump has a Gemini Sun conjunct Uranus and opposite his Moon in Sagittarius. Saturn in Sag is plowing full steam ahead towards these planets by late December. He will be under immense pressure during December and January and into February (well, duh). Then Saturn comes back to these points next July.
The most interesting thing going on for him showed up in his own solar return, the birthday chart for his 2016 birthday. Uranus was right at the Midheaven, allowing him to effectively play the outsider card. Mars retrograde in that chart also helped with that. Uranus on his Midheaven exaggerates his unpredictability, and he is already heavily influenced by Uranus in his birth chart.
More on the outlook of his (gag) presidency in my December column.
November 2 2016
And here I love Halloween and love my own birthday month of November yet your astrologer has been feeling it, as I know we all are…
This election is way too terrifying. Because I’m that kind of Sagittarian I’ve been out knocking on doors to make sure that orange-haired monster doesn’t win — I trust you all are doing what you can as well on every level.
November has started off with a cranky Venus- Saturn conjunction and an edgy Mars-Uranus square. We can’t take much more of the tension! Thankfully we wont have to! It passes by the weekend, when Venus catches up to a square with Chiron. Women will deliver this election. Just sayin’.
But just to assuage all of our anxieties I had to calculate Hillary’s solar return — a chart cast for her birthday last week which gives us a good view into her upcoming 12 months.
Hillary’s solar return shows tremendous fulfillment and success of her vision. Full stop.
Saturn falls right opposite her Midheaven, indicating her stepping into a role of great responsibility, a role that to her represents the fulfillment of a destiny.
Will it be hard fought? Yes. Will people project all kinds of crap on her? Yes. Neptune opposes her Ascendant. Will she continue to have an …. ahem… interesting relationship with concealment? Yup. Her Moon in Virgo is in the 12th house this year. But that 12th also represents public service, as does Virgo. She has a very watery natal chart and this solar return has significant planets in watery houses…
The most interesting thing by far in this chart has to do with Venus in Sag, which makes a square to Neptune and is close to the Midheaven-Saturn angle. This makes me think she will actually attempt to uphold values that honor women, the earth, and people who are historically disenfranchised in this country.
But then again that could just be my irrepressible Sagittarian hopefulness seeping out! I’ll talk about the upcoming Pluto transit of the US in another column….
So (belated) Happy Halloween, Happy Day of the Dead. Enjoy this little video of the best witches dance I’ve ever seen (my relations got some moves!), and let’s all try to get through the next week without losing our minds….
November’s Important Dates
November 8th US Election Day The Sun at 15 degrees Scorpio crosses the earth axis
November 21 424 pm Sun enters Sag!
November 29 719 am New Moon at 7’43 Sag
October 1 2016
Yes, two new moons. That should keep us balanced! Last night brought us a pretty new moon in Libra with great aspects for getting things done and being happy about it.
Don’t you love this picture? I think it’s an apt depiction of Libra. I have always been awed by Librans’ commitment to hold all perspectives in perfect balance all of the time. Sounds exhausting, doesn’t it? And they do it so naturally….
Saturn picks up speed this month, moving away from its square to Neptune. We will all start to feel some release. Of course, the North Lunar Node is parked in a square to Saturn all month. We will be acutely aware of friends and intimates and will want to keep ’em all close, not just because of the relationship-oriented Libran energy but because of Saturn and the Node. I recommend we do that especially as the month progresses.
The middle of the month is crazy, with a bellicose full moon in Aries October 16 that lines up with Uranus and pulls in Mercury, Mars and Pluto. I am concerned that this configuration will bring out the martial side of Aries. It occurs on the earth axis, so I’m thinking global conflict. Sorry to be grim. There are certainly plenty of places where conflict is already raging…
Now this lineup could also really bring to a head the clumsy and overt misogyny of Donald Trump, since the full moon aspects emphasize the aggressive side of Mars. The full moon also happens to aspect Donald’s Saturn-Venus conjunction in Cancer in his natal chart. The guy hates women — this is nothing new — and his Saturn-Venus aspect shows it. It could explode out from under him that week….
(Speaking of the Presidential candidates…. if you would like my take on the candidates scroll down to my August column where I go into their charts in more detail…)
Hillary’s birthday is coming up on October 26th. By the end of October, the Sun and Mercury are paired up in Scorpio, Venus in Sag catches up to Saturn, and Mars in Capricorn squares Uranus. I believe that the global impact of whatever craziness the full moon brings will push the US electorate into a more serious frame of mind. And there is a new moon in Scorpio on the 30th, wonderful for deep insight and reflection. The month ends with planets that facilitate our capacity for sound decision-making.
Let’s hope so!
September 30 813 pm New Moon @8’15 Libra
October 16 1224 pm Full Moon @ 23’14 Aries
October 30 139 pm New Moon @ 7’44 Scorpio
Happy Halloween! Remember, the veil between the word is at its thinnest — honor those ancestors…
September 1 2016
September is wild! Solar eclipse today; lunar eclipse on the 16th. And Mercury retrograde!
The New Moon at 9’21” Virgo and solar eclipse occurred at 5:03 this morning EDT. And what a new moon it is! It lines up perfectly with the Saturn Neptune square, and it pulls in Uranus as well. Saturn and Neptune are going out with a bang — let’s hope that’s only a metaphor for god’s sake. The Saturn Neptune square is incredibly exact right now, and by the end of the month Saturn starts to pull away from Neptune and then bye-bye to this aspect.
Here’s my take on the Saturn Neptune square:
it is a very large and very overwhelming wave of unconscious desire and inspiration. Many of us have been struggling in these deep waters and even getting wiped out. Saturn helps us set up some structures to navigate it.
After ruminating on this I believe the Virgo new moon is a beautiful thing and is helping us really get real about handling this wave. Virgo is earthy, concrete, real. All of the earth signs help us manage day to day reality. (I have a serious appreciation of earth since I have none in my own chart!) So this Virgo new moon is a nice gift from the universe to help us deal with this overwhelming, unsettling, boggy and sometimes scary Saturn Neptune square,
This perfect example of today’s New Moon in Virgo/solar eclipse/Saturn Neptune aspect just came into my inbox: Georgetown University just announced its own version of reparations for slavery:
Way to go, Virgo new moon and Saturn and Neptune! Over the past few months the tidal wave of the US’ shadow side has been crashing down onto our heads. Yes, it’s overwhelming. It’s painful. Facing the legacy of the roots of this country, as imbedded as they are in enslavement and genocide, seems unavoidable right now. This legacy is the source of ongoing and renewed distress and conflict, and it is all around us. This is part of what the Saturn Neptune square have been surfacing.
Neptune can manifest as redemption. Saturn always has a side to it that is about accountability.And Virgo too, in its drive to have integrity, to create wholeness, also has to do with accountability.
So on the day of this eclipse and Virgo New Moon, Georgetown University announces its plan to try to redeem its history of profiting and building its institution literally on the backs of enslaved Africans.
I could go on — there are more examples of this right now, such as 49ers quarterback Colin Kaepernick’s protest. Another act of accountability.
And yes, Mercury is retrograde! It went retrograde on the 30th of August and remains so til September 22nd. The Sun and Mercury are conjunct the week of the 11th. Oh baby! That will really exaggerate the Mercury retro effects so get ready!
There is a Pisces full moon (and lunar eclipse) on the 16th with strong Mars aspects. This falls on Trump’s Sun and Moon and Hillary’s Moon, so that will be a significant week for them, their relationship, and in their campaigns. Sparks will fly!
Happy Fall Equinox on the 22nd! And Jupiter enters Libra on the 9th and hangs out on the Earth axis for a good part of the month. That could bring some global relief. Mars finally finally ends its endless eons of being in Scorpio and Sag and enters Capricorn late in the month.
September’s Important Dates
September 1 503 am New Moon at 9’21 Virgo and Solar Eclipse
September 16 306 pm Full Moon and lunar eclipse at 24’20 Pisces
September 22 132 am Mercury turns direct at 14′ 56 Virgo
September 22 1022 am Fall Equinox! Sun enters Libra
Solar eclipse tomorrow morning ! And it’s a doozy!
Yes, there will be a solar eclipse tomorrow morning at 503 am EDT, at 9 degrees 21 minutes of Virgo. Oh baby! Eclipses intensify the effect of the new or full moon they fall on, and since this is a solar eclipse, it occurs at the new moon. This will be an intense one, since the Sun and Moon exactly aspect the Saturn Neptune square. Let’s all opt for equanimity and not self-immolation, okay?
More on this and the rest that September has to offer in my September post…. Check back tomorrow!
August 5 2016
August is a busy little month! And Mercury goes retrograde on the 30th.
There is a lot of mutable energy in the sky right now — Mercury just entered Virgo, Venus enters it today, and Jupiter is already there. Saturn is in Sag, and Mars just moved into Sag this week (and onto my Sun, which is why I’ve been an extremely busy little bee). Neptune is in Pisces. And of course on the 22nd the Sun enters Virgo.
The homeopath and amateur entomologist in me associates the mutable signs with insects, especially the flying ones– go figure. Insects are busy and live in a transitional space between earth and sky. They have a kind of nervous energy, similar to how Mercury functions in its rulership of Gemini and Virgo. And bees especially remind me of Virgo because the beehive works as a seamless whole, with every bee doing its wee little task with such beauty and even altruism, as the entomologists term bees’ biological urge to prioritize success of the whole hive over that of the individual. Kind of a Virgo thing, wouldn’t you say?
The mutable signs of Gemini, Virgo, Sagittarius, and Pisces have to do with the future. They are transitional signs, adaptable, young or youthful, taking what’s come before and stretching towards a new state of being. Their busy brains are always processing. That’s why the mutable signs are fun, fascinating, and sometimes buggy. So just to add to the unsettledness of this period, this month is dominated by mutability. The Saturn-Neptune square in the mutable signs of Sag and Pisces, which has been so difficult for many of us this summer, makes us very edgy about the future. Everything is unsettled and where will it end up, we wonder?
And this brings me to the topic I said I would write about…
Donald Trump, Hillary Clinton, and the Presidential Election.
First– let me be clear. Those of you who read my column know my politics. So yes, I have a clear bias: I don’t have enough scary adjectives to describe Trump and what his Presidency would do to this country.
I just had to get that out of the way.
I have been analyzing their charts, the transiting planets, the US chart, and the planets on Election Day. The bottom line is that I believe there are strong astrological indications that Hillary will win. But we have a lot to slog through before that happens, especially in light of Trump’s unpredictability. Let me first break down their natal charts and then discuss what’s happening now and what might unfold this month and next.
Donald Trump was born June 14, 1946. Speaking of mutability, he has a Gemini Sun and a Moon in Sagittarius. He also has Uranus in Gemini, falling quite close to the Sun and opposite the Moon. But when I looked at his chart using the Uranian method, the angles are much tighter between Mars and the Moon/Uranus midpoint and also between the Sun and Pluto. I know, you’re saying, “huh?”
The Uranian method is really helpful for seeing narrow angles and significant trigger points, as well as seeing interactions with the World or Earth Axis. Please bear with me!
Here is my take on him:
None of this is new, since we are seeing it played out in the public sphere every day. The main theme of his entire chart is that he feels small (like an insect) and wants to be big. This is the meaning of his Sun-Pluto problem and also his Saturn-Venus conjunction in the 11th house, which indicates deep insecurity and a need to belong. He is erratic, paranoid, narcissistic, charismatic, hot-tempered and thin-skinned — all part of the Mars aspect to the Moon/Uranus business. His Mercury-Neptune square facilitates lying, a way with the media, and an ability to project an image.
There is nothing more dangerous than an insecure man with a lot of power and access…
There are many interconnections between his planetary positions and those in the chart of the US — no surprise there. He has Mars in Leo, which Americans love in their Presidents. His Mars falls close to his Ascendant, feeding his combative nature. He tripped over his Mars this past week as Mars in late Scorpio transited his Mars and Ascendant and aspected Pluto. One aspect of Mars/Pluto is the warrior, and Trump blundered in his attack on the Khans. He has angered yet another key constituency — veterans and people who support the military.
Will his campaign implode between now and the election?
It’s very possible. Although he has tremendous appeal to some because he is playing on Saturn-Neptune instability and stoking the fear of scared white people who sense they are losing “their” country, he has Neptunian problems of his own. We know from observing him that the man has not a shred of self-awareness. When I progressed his Sun and Midheaven (an astrologer’s predictive trick), his Sun lands on his Neptune and his Midheaven on the Moon/Uranus -Mars axis. Oh, that’s trouble for the Donald. He has no control over his unconscious impulses whatsoever, and he can’t be reined in. He also has the current Saturn-Neptune-Uranus angle on top of his Saturn-Venus-Hades combination, which means he can’t stop his hatefulness. At a certain point, the Saturn Neptune square — which falls on the Ascendant of the US right now– will push us more towards love and connection. We saw the Democrats play to that in their convention.
The mutable planets in the sky during August and September will move past all these significant points in his chart. Could it bring him down, or could he act like the most unconscious Gemini Sun/Sagittarius Moon and just walk away from the whole thing?
Yup. Remember that the mutable signs bring transition and movement, and that they are famously twitchy about commitment. Mercury will be retrograde in Virgo for three weeks in September. And– Uranus is aspecting the Saturn-Neptune square, adding an element of the unexpected.
An October surprise may likely come in September… But who knows, I’m just a helplessly optimistic Sagittarian astrologer.
Hillary Clinton was born on October 26, 1947. She has a Scorpio Sun and a Scorpio Ascendant, and a Pisces Moon. She also has Venus and Mercury in Scorpio and all the Scorpio is in the 12th house, Pisces’ house. Water water everywhere. Astrological water has to do with the feeling realm, and Scorpio is known as the most “intense” of the water signs. This is because Scorpio has to do with the transformational power of attaching feelings to a person or idea. Through that transformation, energy is given, changed, reborn. At its best, Scorpio takes what is hidden and brings it out into the light. There is a hidden quality to all of the water signs, and she has a good dose of that.
With all the Scorpio she has and in the 12th house to boot– a place where motivations are hidden — no wonder many people don’t trust her. She also has a very powerful Mars-Pluto conjunction in Leo, squaring Venus. As I said above, Mars-Pluto can be a warrior aspect. It is also the aspect of an organizer, someone who gets things done, someone who has a fierce drive, tenacity, and boundless energy. The Venus influence adds a strong sense of values and sense of shared purpose. Mars-Pluto combinations are also well known for ruthlessness, a kind of “take no prisoners” way of achieving a goal. Hillary is known to be hawkish, and if she becomes President she will have no trouble as Commander in Chief. Yet keep in mind that the 12th house and the Pisces moon also connote a commitment to service and to working through institutions, as do her Saturn and Mars in the 9th house.
These qualities too are ones we are very familiar with in her: She has a tremendous influence on the world at large, which we can see through her Mars-Venus-Pluto combination on the earth axis. She seeks power and is comfortable with it. Interestingly, the pile up of Scorpio in the 12th house and the Scorpio Ascendant make her quite introverted, and her Saturn -Mercury square makes her focused, obsessive about details, and shy about expressing her emotional depth.
A couple of years ago Hillary went through her own difficult Neptune transit when Neptune opposed her Virgo Midheaven. She stepped down as Secretary of State. It remains to be seen how much of her watery nature she will reveal. Keep in mind that her Moon falls at 22 degrees Pisces, squaring the Donald’s Sun and Moon. The mutable planets of the next two months will have their way with her too…
Over the next few months and on election day key aspects of her chart — her Mars-Venus-Pluto and Midheaven axes — line up dramatically with the Earth Axis. The transits are powerful for her on election day as well — Saturn, the planet of manifestation, aspects her Sun; transiting Sun in Scorpio will aspect her Mars-Venus-Pluto; and the transiting moon will be in Pisces, like her natal moon.
August’s important dates
August 2 446 pm New moon @ 10’58 Leo
August 18 528 am Full moon @ 25’52 Aquarius
August 22 1240 pm Sun enters Virgo
August 30 905 am Mercury goes retro @ 29’03 Virgo
August 3 2016
Happy New Moon in Leo!
Let’s hope the energy of last night’s new moon will help me get my monthly column finished! My apologies, dear readers! Check back soon for my analysis of Donald Trump’s birth chart and how long it will take for his campaign to implode….He’s having a hard time with Mars this week.
And he has Saturn Neptune and Uranus to contend with!
July 2 2016
July is a weird month! Uranus sits on the earth axis, creating lots of global tension– have you noticed? — and then there is the Saturn-Neptune bog…
So it seems that polarization is the name of the game these days, and that is very much the quality of the planet Uranus. From Brexit to US electoral politics, people and political dynamics seem incredibly polarized. Although Uranus has moved away from its square to Pluto –which I thought would bring us all some relief from endless crisis — it has moved to the 22 degree Aries mark, right on the so-called “earth axis.” When planets transit points on this earth axis, world events are triggered. Uranus can be explosive, sudden, dramatic, chaotic — and polarizing. There is a lot of that going on, and I am sorry to say it will continue pretty much all summer. Uranus in Aries on the earth axis is stimulating Aries individualism and self-protection to come to the fore.
And in fact, this month of July will bring us even more insanely polarizing events and dynamics. Staring on July 8th, first Venus, then Mercury, and then the Sun all square Uranus. The Sun-Uranus square on the 15th falls on the earth axis, and the moon will be waxing and almost full. That Capricorn full moon will shine a light on polarization in a very acute way. And what do you know? This transit coincides with the Republican convention which is likely to be a big mess.
Voter’s remorse! Speaking of the Brexit vote , I just have to say that it was a classic example of Mars retrograde. They had a referendum and then afterwards woke up and said, wow, perhaps that was a mistake. Can we have a do-over? The Brits should have consulted an astrologer before scheduling that referendum during Mars retrograde.
And how will we deal with the Saturn Neptune square?
This is a quite strange combination which has been in effect already for a month and will continue all summer. It isn’t an easy one, and here’s why:
Saturn in Sagittarius emphasizes a kind of intellectual primacy or rigidity, and Neptune in Pisces is like Neptune on crack, dreamy, formless, unbounded. You put these two influences together and the first thing that happens is that Saturn resists the formlessness of Neptune and gets all judgmental and arrogant. And guess what? It doesn’t work. The result is hopelessness, despair, depression. It requires engaging some structure to deal with this in a positive way.
These two planets can also combine zealotry (Sag) and immolation and death (Pisces). The Paris attack occurred last November under a Saturn Neptune square, and of course, Orlando did as well, as have many other recent incidents of mass killings in the name of Sagittarian-Piscean delusion.
Here is the healing potential of Saturn Neptune, however–
In the midst of such terrible brutality and loss of life in Orlando, there was a tremendous and life-affirming outpouring of love and support for the LGBT community. There was widespread recognition that this was, in the main, a homophobic attack. Attempts by the right wing to use it to fuel the flames of Islamophobia were largely unsuccessful.
We have to be mindful of the tendency to fall into despair right now….Here are my tips.
As boggy as this influence is, there are ways to deal with it and positive things that can arise as a
result. I have recommended these strategies before but this month, they are non-negotiable!
1. Create a routine and a regimen for health — start jogging, go to yoga, do T’ai Chi. Pay attention to self-care.
2. A spiritual or meditative practice is a must — even 5 minutes a day.
3. If you have any creative or artistic yearnings, follow them. Do a bit each day.
4. Especially for those Geminis, Librans, and Aquarians out there –and also Sagittarians– get out of your heads. Avoid intellectualizing and over- thinking. This is not a time to be hypercritical. Remember that hopelessness about the world and its ills can be a function of privilege.
5. Go to the beach. Neptune is the ocean, after all!! Our mama.
6. Have some fun.
July’s Planetary Events
July 4 7:02 am New moon @ 12’54 Cancer
July 19 6:58 pm Full moon @ 27’40 Capricorn
July 22 5:31 am Sun enters Leo
June 5 2016
New moon in Gemini last night highlighted the strange Jupiter-Saturn-Neptune T-square
First, my apologies for taking so long to get my monthly column up! I have been slammed by Mars retrograde moving across my Sun. Apparently I needed to be wearing bubble wrap all month long to protect myself from Sagittarian self injury….Really. Scraped knees, allergic rashes, summer coughs. I would be interested to know if any other Sagittarians out there have had this experience — especially born in the first few days of Sag. Please let me know!
And Scorpios — now it’s your turn. Mars retrograde has moved back into the late degrees of Scorpio. Watch out, that’s all I’m saying!
And just to complicate my life and that of other Sagittarians, there is another full moon in Sag this month. As if the one in May wasn’t enough! God I can’t stand full moons in my own sign.
But back to Jupiter-Saturn-Neptune….. This odd influence is expansive but not quite, inspired but doubting, perhaps even involving some disappointment.
I do believe we are seeing this influence playing out politically with mainstream Republicans saying, holy crap, Donald Trump has no respect for the rule of law. They’re asking themselves exactly what they have gotten themselves into by supporting this wingnut and demagogue… It seems as though the reality of a Donald Trump candidacy is sinking in. Thank you Saturn!
Jupiter and Saturn and Neptune are having us contemplate that.
Back to June’s planetary situation….
Here is the good news: Uranus has moved away from Pluto, so that hellious influence is pretty much behind us. Yay! The Sun and Venus spend most of the month in a pretty little conjunction in Gemini. We like that. Easy breezy.
Then after Jupiter advances in Virgo, it leaves Saturn and Neptune in a square for the second half of the month and into the summer. This is a complicated influence that requires great discipline so we don’t fall into depression or extreme couch-potato-ness. As I have written before, it is kind of boggy. If we set up a routine, inspiration follows.
Seriously. Gotta be disciplined. Saturn and Neptune in combination are also wonderful for artistic inspiration and healing. It just requires work.
And then there’s Mars retrograde. Yes, Mars is still retrograde!
It remains retrograde until June 29th, oh happy day.
June’s important dates
June 4 10:59 pm New moon @ 14’53 Gemini
June 20 7:02 am Full moon @ 29’33 Sagittarius
June 29 7:38 pm Mars stations direct at 23’04 Scorpio!
June 1 2016
Well, your astrologer is suffering from Mars retrograde moving across her Sun….check back in a day or two for the monthly ruminations!
Things do not go as planned under this influence!
May 9 2016
Care for an object lesson in Mars retrograde craziness? Just look at the Republicans.
I have been watching the news unfold over the last few days and seeing Mars retrograde and its impish reversals everywhere. First, Paul Ryan hedges on an endorsement of Trump, and the Bushes resoundingly deny him their endorsement. Then Trump threatens to challenge Ryan’s chairmanship of the upcoming convention.
Al of this is classic Mars retrograde! Power struggles, conflict, surprises. The dissension will build and build til the May 21 full moon in Sag which, as I wrote below, will hit Trump’s natal chart in many ways.
This just keeps getting more and more entertaining!
April 29 2106
May is wild! The real impact of Mars and Mercury retrograde kicks in and Uranus sits on the earth’s axis.
Mercury went retrograde yesterday afternoon and remains so until May 22nd. Mars will be retrograde all of May and until the end of June. Take note, everyone: the impact of this delightful festival of retrogrades has barely begun… I am looking forward to it!
Because Mercury and Mars command such a large sphere of our daily conscious lives, we can just imagine how their retrograde motion together could throw a wrench into the works of many plans and activities. It is a time when even if it seems that things are going wrong, they are actually going right. Remember: it’s about process, not outcome!
Most of the month of May is relatively calm, with a couple of big exceptions. Uranus in Aries is moving further away from its square to Pluto as every day goes by. That’s good news in terms of reducing the intensely tumultuous shattering that has been the hallmark of the last 5 years. But — oh you knew there would be a “but” — Uranus spends all of May moving across the earth axis at 22.5 degrees of Aries. This trigger point has particular impact on the world at large in terms of dramatic, sudden events. As Uranus has crossed the 20 and 21 degree mark during April — which is very close indeed– there have been several large and destructive earthquakes. Sorry, folks. I think May could bring even stronger ones.
The real excitement this month comes with the Full Moon in Sagittarius on May 21st. The full moon falls with Mars retrograde, which means that the Sun opposes Mars retrograde. Mercury goes direct on the 22nd. These few days will be very interesting and unpredictable. All of our Mars retrograde impulses will be on dramatic display! With Mars retrograde opposing the Sun there will be a strong pull in a different direction, especially for Gemini, Sag, Virgo, and Pisces.
Guess who is a Gemini with a Sagittarius moon?
The degree of the May 21st full moon and Mars retro make a strong aspect to Trump’s Sun and Moon.
I think he could be headed for a reversal Just sayin’.
May 6 331 pm New Moon at 16’41 Taurus
May 21 5:16 pm Full Moon at 1’14 Sagittarius
May 22 11:21 am Mercury goes direct! at 14’21 Taurus
May 27 11:52 am Mars retrograde moves back into Scorpio
all times EDT
April 2 2016
April is fabulous and insane! Mars and Mercury both go retrograde!
This is the kind of month we astrologers love — or at least this one does. April has so many utterly contradictory influences, and of course, all of them are getting played out on the US electoral stage. It would be entertaining if it weren’t so damn scary.
Allow me to break it down:
Mars is retrograde from April 17th til June 28th!
Yes, it’s a long one…. This important transit only happens once every 2 years, so when it occurs we are so not used to it. Keep in mind that Mars represents the will. It is the energy we need to generate the simplest of actions. Mars represents desire, action work, plans, goals, and is a major aspect of our individuality. Although popular representations of Mars reduce it to aggression and maleness, it is far more complex than that, as it has to do with our self-expression as one of the planetary vanguard that presents our Sun sign self into the world. It can be an instinctive expression of our power, without the trappings of decorum, or it can be a productive and constructive expression that inspires work and the building of society and relationships. It animates us.
When it goes retrograde it psychically allows to come forward those Martian parts of us that are suppressed or under wraps. So get ready! During its transit — which begins this time in early Sagittarius and goes back into Scorpio by late May– we find ourselves moving in a different direction from what we expected, either from a shift in our own desire or from outside influences that appear to throw us a curveball. It is critical to go with the flow of energy during this time, and not fight it. It is also the case that power struggles can come to the surface during Mars retrograde, and so conflict can erupt that has been suppressed.
It is always a highly instructive time when the personal planets go retrograde!
What is the difference between Mercury retrograde and Mars retrograde?
Good question, Curious Dog!
First, let’s look at the difference between Mercury and Mars, and then we can understand better what happens when they are retrograde.
Mercury’s sphere of action is communication, the mind, thinking, short trips. Mars’ sphere is even broader and has to do with a lot that makes up our daily lives: physical activity, work, plans, goals, expressions of our individual ego, and yes, Mars can have to do with war and aggression — but it doesn’t have to.
When Mercury is retrograde, the linear, rational mind takes a back seat to a more non-linear process. That’s why we say Mercury retrograde is good for intuition and dreams, and for finding out information in unexpected ways. It is a good time for intuitive awareness to surface. Because the linear part of Mercury doesn’t function properly during Mercury retrograde, we say that linear processes can break down, such as things that have to do with digital processing, time, and travel.
When Mars is retrograde, activities don’t happen in a straightforward way. The emphasis is on process rather than outcome. Willfulness might surface and make it hard to get things done in the way we expect. We may find that we desire something else entirely from what we are doing. The unexpected happens and things occur that fall outside of our carefully constructed plans. If there are are relationships where our self-expression feels squashed we might speak out and stand up for ourselves during Mars retrograde.
Now that you’ve had my tutorial on Mars and Mercury retrograde, we can put them together and see that we have a wonderful free-for-all coming between April 28th and May 22nd! A large swath of our daily lives will not occur in a regular way for the three weeks in which the retrogrades overlap. Things will be extremely unpredictable! Travel will be a mess! Plans will get thrown out the window!
Expect the unexpected!
So all of this is bound to show up in the US presidential race….
Indeed! Your guess is as good as mine but there will be some unexpected events, that’s for sure, especially between April 28 and May 22. Keep in mind that both Kasich and Sanders have Mars retrograde in their birth charts. This stretch of Mars retrograde could bolster their standings, or, someone new may enter the race on the Republican side. The Mars retrograde influence may turn the tide strongly against the racist, sexist, and xenophobic positions and behavior of Trump and Cruz. We continue to be under a tight Saturn-Jupiter square this month, introducing some evaluation of the candidates positions and capacity to govern….
April’s important planetary dates
April 7 1125 am New Moon at 18’04 Aries
April 19 1031 am Sun enters Taurus
April 22 125 am Full Moon at 2’31 Scorpio
Happy Earth Day!!
April 28 121 pm Mercury goes retrograde at 23’34 Taurus
March 1 2016
March is a wild month! Two eclipses, a Saturn Jupiter square and and and….
Things are very interesting this month! First, the Saturn-Jupiter square that goes into effect this month and dominates the next few months will bring us some different dynamics. Overall, that’s a good thing, although it does have some challenges. We are already seeing some of its impact on the financial sector with the drop in oil prices and the threat of more blowback from bad credit extended to developing nations, etc. In other words, Saturn and Jupiter have to do with how we deal with resources. There is likely to be an economic readjustment over the next few months. Globally, Saturn and Jupiter will need to set a situation right, and I expect to see some reckoning with the banking industry and the energy sector.
Saturn reins in Jupiter’s excess and Jupiter softens Saturn’s strictness, so on a personal level it is a positive aspect for planning and decision-making, especially when it comes to money. It will be an important time for everyone to make long-range decisions and be sensible.
Saturn and Jupiter are also a kind of patriarchal team, and we are seeing already that the old guard of the US Republican Party is attempting to clip the wings of upstart Donald Trump. This effort will grow more intense over the coming weeks, and in fact, the March 8th New moon and solar eclipse has a strong influence of Saturn and Jupiter. It also falls on a degree of Pisces that makes a close angle to Trump’s Gemini Sun. The eclipse adds a surprise factor, so I’m looking forward to some Trump drama next week that may portend the start of his demise….
Interestingly, in a birth chart a Saturn -Jupiter aspect can indicate tremendous difficulties with money management, and a chronic state of the ‘wolf at the door.”
Guess who has that in his birth chart? Marco Rubio. Interesting, huh?
So two eclipses this month — one total solar March 8 and one partial lunar on March 23. Sad to say, neither is visible in North America….
Again, I do not emphasize eclipses too much because they actually happen fairly frequently. However, these are interesting times, and the eclipses add an extra punch to already powerful lunar events. In addition, we are in the lats month or two of the Uranus-Pluto square, the very tumultuous influence of the last 5 years. It will not end quietly — we still have an explosive month or two to get through.
And Happy Spring! Spring Equinox is on March 20th!
March 20 12:31 am EDT Sun enters Aries! Spring Equinox!
March 23 802 am EDT Full Moon at 3′ 17 Libra
Sneak preview: get ready for Mars retrograde coming in April!
January 31 2016
February is relatively calm — that is, in a context of complete Uranus-Pluto craziness!
Really — February is quite a nice month, planetarily speaking. We are in a funny transitional moment, nearing the end of the very dramatic Uranus-Pluto influence and the beginning of a good few months of a Jupiter-Saturn square.
Let’s start the countdown to the end of the Uranus-Pluto square…. The angle is tight this month and in March, Uranus starts pulling ahead of Pluto, although we will still be feeling the high drama….And god knows we are feeling it now and throughout February!
It’s almost over! Yay! Bye bye Uranus and Pluto…
and Hello Jupiter and Saturn!
By the end of February, Jupiter and Saturn begin their square. Jupiter and Saturn aspects always have to do with resources, with money, real estate, and investments. This interesting transit will be very significant for the world’s economy. Of course, it could have everything to do with the dropping oil prices — we’re seeing the implications of that already. The stock markets are likely to be wild, and banking could experience a spasm.
Jupiter is in Virgo, retrograding towards an exact square to Saturn. Saturn is moving forward in Sagittarius, and they make their square at about 15 degrees of Virgo and Sag respectively. Politically, Jupiter retrograding off of the 20-degree mark of Virgo could spell the end of Trump’s apparent juggernaut…. As I have written before, this 20-22 degree spot of the mutable signs is very important in these early days of the Presidential campaign.
We will see! the Iowa caucuses occur while Mercury in Capricorn aspects the Uranus-Pluto square, and the New Hampshire Primary occurs right after the new moon, with Venus in Capricorn involved in the Uranus-Pluto business. Hmmm. Capricorn can be conservative but the Uranus-Pluto influence is edgy, radical, potentially crazy. Trump could take Iowa but not New Hampshire, me thinks. Hillary in Iowa, Sanders in New Hampshire. New Hampshire will play to the candidates with Mars retrograde — Kasich and Sanders.
But really — your guess is as good as mine!
February’s important dates
February 8 11:40 am New Moon at 19’16 Aquarius
February 19 12:35 am Sun enters Pisces!
February 22 1:21 pm Full Moon at 3’34 Virgo
December 31, 2015
Happy New Year! And welcome to a very fascinating astrological year!
January has some ups and downs but is dominated by a beautiful Jupiter-North Lunar Node conjunction in Virgo. This combo is nice on the relational front, especially the week of the 17th when Venus in Sag squares it. In fact, Venus is in most of the interesting planetary pictures all month long. We like that! Since Venus entered Sag at the tail end of December, during early January it squares Neptune and then Chiron, is conjunct Saturn, and then gets involved with Jupiter and the Node. We can expect dreamy inspiration, perhaps some emotional belt-tightening, and then healing. Could be worse, folks! The Saturn-Neptune square of November and December is over, with Saturn moving full steam ahead in Sagittarius – for the moment!
But back to 2016 … the winter and spring are very interesting from an astrological point of view. As I have written before, the Uranus-Pluto square which has dominated world events and has brought us so much shattering since 2011 is here for its last blast. The influence lasts through March and in April Uranus moves away from Pluto and that’s it. These two titans will not be in a major relationship again for another 40 years. Of course Uranus moves onto earth axis at 22 degrees Aries this spring so things won’t be exactly calm…
Then in March Jupiter in Virgo and Saturn in Sag make a square and stay there through May. Hmm. Interesting! This is likely to bring economic changes, perhaps some stock market drama… Uranus-Pluto action could wreak more havoc in the Middle East and with oil prices, or perhaps an environmental calamity will exert a blow on the world economy…. This planetary aspect is all about resources.
There is a lot of action this year in mutable signs: Saturn in Sagittarius, Jupiter in Virgo, Neptune and Chiron in Pisces. The mutable signs are forward- looking, adaptable, transitional. They break the mold in some significant ways and seem like a breath of fresh air. It is interesting that many of the contenders in the US Presidential race have their Suns in mutable signs – especially the Republican candidates. Some part of the US voting populace want someone “new” who seems outside the perceived establishment…. But when push comes to shove American elect candidates with their Suns in fixed signs and their Mars’ in Leo….
Saturn in Sag also puts the focus on religion and justice, and on fundamentalism. Great. The Saturn Neptune square comes back for another round in June and July. The Republican convention will be ridiculous.
But wait…Here’s the big surprise this spring: Mars goes retrograde April 17! This is the king of retrogrades – it only happens once every 2+ years and it lasts for a good 2 ½ months. Mars’ arena is action, movement forward, direction, work, goals, and yes…. a certain aggression sometimes too. When Mars goes retrograde, nothing happens in a straightforward way. The emphasis is process, not outcome. One can feel easily thwarted. I know, it sounds like a really good time, but as with all retrogrades, it serves a really important purpose. We all have to learn to go with the flow and to expect the unexpected, to attend to how things get accomplished, not just that we reach our goals. Mars begins this retrograde pass in Sagittarius, in a square to Neptune. By the end of May it retrogrades back into Scorpio. Mars retro in Scorpio? That’s some serious willfulness!
Since most of us were born with Mars direct, Mars retrograde can really mess with our sense of personal impact. For all my friends out there with natal Mars retrograde (you know I love you!), enjoy what might be a very creative and fruitful period for you!
Autumn 2016 and Election Day have Uranus on the earth axis…This suggests a lot of global tumult. The US Presidential elections fall late this year, on November 8th, with the Sun also on the earth axis. There is a Saturn-Mars half square that day. People will be feeling serious and wanting some gravitas.
That’s all the predicting I’m gonna do this far out…..
January’s important dates
January 5 806 am Mercury goes retrograde at 1’03 Aquarius
January 20 1028 am Sun enters Aquarius
January 23 846 pm Full Moon at 329 Leo
January 25 450 pm Mercury goes direct at 14’56 Capricorn!
December 3 2015
Oh what a month! December is a bit…. complicated! And what’s with all the shootings and explosions?
December is dominated by two major influences: the Uranus-Pluto square, back for its final 4 months of tumult, and a very exact Saturn-Neptune square. The Saturn-Neptune square is just plain weird, and it is particularly strong right now at the start of the month, in part because the Sun in Sag is sitting in the same spot as Saturn for these first few days of December. The Saturn-Neptune influence started at the end of November and lasts pretty much all December. Grr. Harrumph.
After experiencing these planets in all their glorious stuckness over the past few days, I have some thoughts about how to work with this influence. I often describe Saturn and Neptune together as being kind of a bog. It is easy to feel stuck and unfocused, overwhelmed, even depressed. Yet if one can engage Saturn to help channel the transcendent Neptunian creative and inspirational force it is very powerful indeed.
Here are my tips for working with this transit:
Expect to feel resistance at first.
Set up a routine or structure and just plow through. That means going to the gym or the studio or meditation cushion even though you don’t want to.
Trust that you’ll catch the main Neptunian current just through practice, and inspiration will follow.
On the global front, this combination isn’t so easy to deal with.
Sadly, I have no magic formula for the world. Keep in mind that Saturn in Sagittarius squaring Neptune in Pisces can have a quality of being deluded (Neptune in Pisces) by religious or ideological fundamentalism (Saturn in Sag). Gee, we are seeing a lot of that lately. There can also be a fascination with or desire for death with this transit. And there is a lot of that going around as well…
And then Uranus and Pluto are back for another round…
The Uranus-Pluto square is coming back into phase this month and will last through March. At that point Uranus finally pulls away from Pluto, marking the last time these two titans make their 90-degree angle to each other. This aspect has occurred on and off since 2011, and has really been the defining astrological condition for these past four years. It is about revolution, destruction, transformation and a kind of shattering of structures. As the two planets approach their square there are extraordinary spasms of violence and also relentless repression. There is also positive transformation — and I have to take every opportunity I can to lift up the Black Lives Matter movement as a manifestation of that transformation. I also want to celebrate my fellow white anti-racist brethren for standing up. We are in the midst of of important social change.
But — it goes without saying that this is a dangerous time. To make matters worse, one of the Uranian astrology planets, a planet named Zeus, is exactly opposite Uranus right now. These two planets combined have to do with firepower, explosions, and shooting. Sorry to be a Bad News Bear, but the next few months will be rough. And this month, next week will be rather rough when Mars squares off to Uranus and Pluto for a few days.
Like I said, this month is odd. Even though I had planned to write about Ted Cruz’ horrifying natal chart, I just can’t stomach it right now. Let’s focus on the lighter stuff. Tis the season of the Winter Solstice and other religious holidays. There is a whopping full moon in Cancer on Christmas Day. That should make family gatherings particularly insane. Let’s all take a page from Adele and the recent SNL skit about how to get through those difficult holiday family gatherings:
December 11 530 am New Moon at 19’03 Sag
December 21 1149 pm Winter Solstice! Sun enters Capricorn!
December 25 413 am Full Moon at 3’20 Cancer
October 31 2015
Happy Halloween! November kicks off with a beautiful Venus-Mars conjunction
November brings us some astrological relief, at least for the first half of the month. The recent Virgo combinations have been really nice for feeling productive and this upcoming Venus-Mars conjunction is fabulous for a sense of shared purpose and fun. Of course, all this Virgo energy can have a down side: some of us get wigged out and work too hard… But Venus and Mars together is a nice pairing.
These few days — Halloween, November 1st and 2nd– are some of my favorite of the whole year. As the witches say, “the veil between the worlds is at its thinnest.” It is a good time for divining work of any kind. It is a good time to honor those ancestors !
So, allow me to do some divining and comment on the 2016 Presidential candidates, such as they are!
Be afraid — be very afraid!
Interesting and somewhat scary astrological facts about some of the 2016 candidates …
Donald Trump’s astrological chart is a hot mess. I know, you could have guessed that! His Mercury-Neptune square makes him a master of projecting an image — god knows what he really thinks. However, my guess is that he really doesn’t like women very much, based on his behavior and his Venus-Saturn conjunction. Saturn in the 11th, a position which sometimes shows up as the ultimate “company man,”could help him morph his identity into what he thinks the [white] people want. Major Uranus aspects to his Sun and Moon make him unpredictable as hell.
Ben Carson, Donald Trump and Hillary Clinton all have Mars in Leo. Americans like their Presidents to have a strong Mars, and especially a Mars in Leo. Hillary’s Mars is the strongest, as it is conjunct Pluto. The Mars Pluto conjunction gives her a fierce steadfastness, and it’s part of why people call her ruthless.
Bernie Sanders has Mars retrograde! Ya gotta love Bernie! Talk about going against the tide — his Mars is going in a different direction from most peoples’. His revolutionary beliefs are deeply rooted and visible in the Saturn-Uranus conjunction in the 12th house. Bottom line, I doubt the US will elect someone with Mars retrograde.
Both Bernie Sanders and Ben Carson are Virgos. Huh? Not a common sign for a US president. Here’s what’s really interesting — although I’m not completely sure what it means:
Three of these candidates have significant planets falling at 20-24 degrees of the mutable signs of Virgo, Pisces, Sag and Gemini. Carson’s Sun is at 24 degrees Virgo; Trump’s Sun is at 22 degrees Gemini and his Moon at 21 Sag; Hillary, a Scorpio Sun, has her Moon at 22 degrees Pisces. Bernie Sanders is a Virgo with his Sun at 15 degrees Virgo, a bit outside the 20-24 degree field.
Weird, huh? What is interesting is that November’s Venus -Mars conjunction in Virgo falls between the same degrees…. Hmm. The recent planetary action in Virgo has really played to the strength of Sanders and Carson, but it won’t last. There will be continued momentum for these candidates over the next couple of weeks. Once Venus and Mars move past those degrees of Virgo, Jupiter reaches that point in Virgo and spends most of December through February there. Carson and Trump will crash and burn by February, I think.
We will see!
November’s Important Astrological Dates
November 11 1248 pm New Moon @ 19’01 Scorpio
November 22 1026 am Sun enters Sagittarius
November 25 545 pm Full Moon @ 3’20 Gemini
October 9, 2015
With most precincts reporting, your astrologer can say that this has been a very rough Mercury retrograde for most of us. And this from a girl who loves those retrogrades. Schedules have been insane, plans have been completely upended, and some of us have had trouble keeping our mouths shut — against our better judgment.
Politically there have been some interesting classic Mercury-retro upsets, some of which have had seriously tragic consequences, such as the US bombing of the Doctors Without Borders hospital in Afghanistan. Between Mercury retrograde and the lunar eclipse I had expected really bad weather on the weekend of the 26th –my timing was a bit off but the weather mess came when a few days later there was the disastrous set of storms that hit the Bahamas and left South Carolina under water.
Mercury retrograde is also famous for surprising revelations. John Boehner announced he was stepping down as Speaker of the House and soon after heir-apparent Kevin McCarthy made an announcement that the House investigation of Benghazi was completely politically motivated…. Well we knew that, but it was another things for him to say it on TV. Classic Mercury retrograde, I must say! Bye bye John, bye bye Kevin. This is very entertaining indeed.
The mess in Syria. I have been thinking a lot about this, of course, because it is an increasingly awful situation and its consequences keep getting more and more drastic.
I believe that the complexity of what’s happening in Syria and specifically Russia’s involvement is blowback from the Venus -retrograde period we just went through in August. Remember — the ancient Mayans believed that Venus retrograde was a time of preparing for war. Obviously that war has been going on a long time, but based on Russia’s military activity the last time Venus was retrograde in 2014 I thought Russia would be launching a military action somewhere…. Well, here it is.
On a more cheerful note, Mars in Virgo catches up to Jupiter in a couple of days for a nice chunk of October… Enjoy!
October 5 2015
It has been a helluva few days… The Saturn Mars square and the Sun in Libra conjunct Mercury retrograde has made it very hard for me to get anything done!
October is an interesting month!
Mercury turns around on the 9th, so I expect the next few days will bring that special je ne sais quoi of strangeness in terms of communication and plans.
This week promises to be a mess on the global socio-political front since the Sun aspects Saturn and Pluto, and that is always a good time. Just kidding. I know, it feels never-ending.
October gets interesting around the 11th when Mars in Virgo catches up to Jupiter for 10 days. that should be fun and satisfying. Then Venus in Virgo follows and is conjunct Jupiter the last week of the month. Fun. Happy. Fulfilling.
So enjoy October, at least from the 11th onward.
I will be back later with more astrological ruminations about the current geo-political scene and my take on Donald Trump’s chart. But out of respect for Mercury retrograde’s relentless messing with me, I will sign off today after listing the dates to watch for in October:
October’s important astrological dates
October 9 1059 am Mercury turns direct! At 0’56 Libra, smack on the earth axis.
October 12 807 pm New moon 19’20 Libra
October 23 148 pm Sun enters Scorpio
October 27 806 am Full moon at 3’45 Taurus
(All times EDT.)
October 1 2015
Mercury is very retrograde…
August 31, 2015
It’s the last blast of Venus retrograde…. just in time for Mercury retrograde on September 17th
Okay, I know that I sang the praises of Venus retrograde in my last two columns, and well, perhaps it hasn’t been so great for everyone. My apologies! I can’t help it– I love the retrogrades! It seems like the start of the transit in late July when it was piled up with Jupiter and Pluto and Saturn triggered a fair amount of crisis for folks.
This Saturn-Pluto half-square this summer has brought many of us to our knees, and has also created the fertile ground necessary for transformation. Jupiter and Saturn, besides having to do with money and resources, can also have to do with confronting the meaning of life. And that isn’t always easy!
But right now and for the first week of September Venus retrograde is conjunct Mars in Leo. This beautiful combination is bringing a sense of shared purpose and connection. It’s very nice. On the political front, it is bringing harmonious resolution to some difficult situations that really could have exploded under a Venus retrograde warpath– like fisticuffs between North and South Korea to cite one example.
Here are a few highlights from my Venus retrograde hit parade so far:
- Economy: Global stock market fluctuations over the past 2 weeks
- Economy: Last week’s decision by Nat’l Labor Relations Board that facilitates easier union bargaining for wages and benefits, possibly paving the way for organized fast food workers to bargain with corporations like McDonalds.
- Economy: The Court of Appeals decision Aug 21 that grants home care workers the right to minimum wage and overtime protections under the Fair Labor Standards Act. This is a major breakthrough!
- Economy: The crisis between Greece and the Eurozone. Alex Tsipras calls for new elections.
- Industrial accidents are very common under Venus retrograde for some reason — within a 24 hour period on August 14th there was the Tianjen, China chemical disaster and a chemical explosion at the Drillchem plant in Conroe, TX that resulted in a shelter-in-place order
- International diplomacy: The Koreas worked out their standoff.
- Cultural values: Today Pres. Obama returned the original Athabascan name “Denali” to the former Mt McKinley in Alaska
- Cultural values: Transgender/genderqueer liberation finally attaining some recognition, from last week’s National Day of Action #BlackTransLivesMatter to yesterday’s New York Times cover story about trans activist and judge Phyllis Frye.
- Cultural values: Refugee and immigration crisis in Europe comes to a head, with countries like Hungary and Macedonia trying to seal their borders and smuggled migrants dying at sea and on land
- Cultural values: Candidate Donald Trump fans the flames of racist, anti immigrant sentiments by continuing to deride people of the global South and calling for a wall at the border.
So as we approach the last week of this retrograde, take time to take stock of relationships and where we put our resources. Venus won’t be doing this again til March 2017.
Mercury retrograde is in Libra this time, and it starts its retrograde stretch with a week of aspects to Saturn. That week of the 17th to 24th could be very challenging! And this from a girl who loves Mercury retrograde! The Saturn-Mercury aspects could be … shall we say, um, trying … in terms of communication and technology. Back up your hard drive, okay? There could just be a tension between the linear world of data and the non linear world of Mercury retrograde…..
My other cautionary note for the month is the Full Moon and Lunar Eclipse on the 27th. We know that Full and New Moons pull a lot of water around the globe. We may see some bad weather on the 27th and with Mercury retrograde and a Saturn-Mars square….. well, it may be difficult to move around.
Keep in mind that Mercury rules information and thought and communication. When it is retrograde those processes do not operate in a linear way. Because this stretch is in Libra, it will be very easy for us to misunderstand other people’s intentions and communications, to project our own stuff onto others. But because Mercury aspects Pluto on and off all month we will have access to our unconscious in a deep way…although we may have trouble expressing it.
Here are my pointers for dealing with Mercury retrograde:
> Go with the flow!
> Let your intuitive perceptions bubble up to the surface
> Pay attention to your dreams
> Try not to make major decisions, not because anything will go wrong but because you may not have all the information you need just yet…
September’s Important Astrological Dates:
September 6 430 am Venus goes direct!
September 13 242 am New Moon at 20’10” Virgo
September 17 211 pm Mercury goes retrograde at 15’53” Libra
September 23 422 am Happy Fall Equinox! Sun enters Libra
September 27 1052 pm Full Moon at 4’40” Aries and Lunar Eclipse!
all times are EDT
July 31, 2015
Happy full moon in Aquarius. August is all about Venus retrograde and interesting Saturn-Jupiter-Pluto aspects
I am looking forward to this month of Venus retrograde, and to Saturn going direct early on August 2nd. Jeez! Is it just me or has this period of Saturn retrograding back into Scorpio felt like a big bog? I love peat bogs, Irish girl that I am, but really. Really!
I would like some situations to start moving, and I am hopeful that they will with Saturn turning around. And we have a Saturn -Jupiter square all month, with a nice angle to Pluto.
This makes for sound decision-making, long-term planning, and an ability to balance grand Jupiterian schemes with a good dose of Saturnian reality. Pluto’s involvement makes us able to take the long view.
And speaking of Pluto!
Allow me to talk about Pluto a bit. Okay, full moon in Aquarius today, so perhaps it’s a bit of rant. I have been thinking a lot about Pluto lately — yes, I know what you’re thinking! I always think about Pluto, it’s true, but I have been thinking about Pluto even more thanks to the fabulous images we’ve been able to see. But it is not only because of these images — it is because I think about social change all the time, and it is clear to me that we really are in the midst of massive social change. And social change isn’t fast. It’s Plutonically slow. The work that goes into it is years in the making.
That is the kind of process that Pluto reflects. Slow, painstaking, powerful, constant. Pluto’s process is borne out a crucible of suffering and destruction and so it scares the bejesus out of us. When we go through that kind of crucible, we burn through a lot of grief and pain, and taking action becomes non-negotiable.
That’s why Pluto represents the most powerful transformation possible. When people experience brutality and loss — and I know there is a lot of that going on right now– they reach a kind of precipice. We talk about people being “at the end of their rope” or “up against it” — in other words, in an extreme state, a state of being burned down to one’s core. That change of state is Pluto’s action, and when faced consciously Pluto gives us the energy and ability to transform the hurt into a cleansing fire.
So Pluto also has to do with the past, with what came before, with lineage, with our blood. Pluto teaches us to know history. Pluto teaches us that although crisis can occur in an instant, deep sustained change takes time.
I must admit that I love the heart- shaped area in Pluto’s topography. Pluto and a heart? Are you kidding? But it makes total sense to me. I have always had a feeling that there is a greater sense of what is needed that underlies Pluto’s ferocity. Pluto knows more than our wee little conscious minds can perceive. Pluto sees all of time, forward and back. Pluto is seeking a balance, a healing, a making right. There’s heart there.
This extraordinary moment we live in– with such shattering destruction and change — is also a time when a movement has emerged which represents this “heart” of Pluto. The Movement for Black Lives is seeking healing, is seeking to make right, to undo the destructiveness knitted into the fabric of this country.
The other part of Plutonic change that I addressed before — the part where we face our demons– is very much at issue now. In order to to “make it right” we whites need to look at our own demons of white privilege and internalized superiority, and work to transform them. Scary, yes. Liberating, yes. We need to study the history of this country. Many white people of conscience are looking at what’s unfolding around us right now and wondering how we can support the movement for racial justice. Asking that question is getting to the heart of Pluto– and its the way to our own hearts, in fact.
C’mon Pluto. We need all of your force and transformational power like never before! And we need Venus retrograde’s sense of values. August’s planetary configurations will bring important growth for this movement.
August’s important planetary dates
August 11 7:12 am Jupiter enters Virgo
August 14 10:55 am New Moon at 21’31 Leo
August 23 6:38 am Sun enters Virgo
August 29 3:32 pm Full Moon at 6’06 Pisces
July 23, 2015
As I wrote last month, I love Venus retrograde! Why? Because it is a much-needed period of realignment on a personal level. During this stretch, we have an opportunity to recalibrate ourselves according to deeper values.
Venus retrograde is not a time of action but of reflection. Things will come up– that’s all. We’ll get clear — or clear-er. Clearer about relationships and about what is really important to us.
I find it amusing that traditional astrology cautioned people not to make major purchases during Venus retro. That’s because Venus has not only to do with values but also with the value of things. During the retrograde we may have an acute awareness about where we have put time, energy, and/or money, and we may realize we need to do something differently — a kind of buyer’s remorse.
Interestingly, the beginning of Venus retrograde has Venus in a pile -up with Jupiter and Saturn, planets which are also about money and investments on all levels. These planets, together with Venus, will also clarify commitments.
I wrote last month that politically speaking, Venus retrograde operates a tad differently. The sense of values plays out on a collective scale and there can be shake-ups. That’s why leaders can fall from power during this time. This transit will wreak havoc with the endlessly expanding field of more-ludicrous-than-the -next Republican candidates…
In any event, just as Venus retrograde does draw attention to values and value, it puts the focus on economics. It helps to look back at the last time Venus retrograded from Virgo into Leo to see what unfinished business might have been left. That last time was 2007, when the subprime mortgage crisis occurred.
So– there are rumblings afoot already about money and resources. New York City and other locales are taking steps to raise the minimum wage for food service workers. There is a socialist running for the Democratic nomination, for god’s sake. (Can someone please tell Bernie to get an analysis about racial justice, and fast?!) And of course, there is Greece and its economic crisis and its relationship to the European Union. It’s interesting that today’s New York Times had a large graphic comparing the US bank bailout with the European Union’s bailout of Greece. Prime Minister Alex Tsipras has an interesting and powerful astrological chart — as does the nation of Greece. Tsipras has his Mars at zero degrees Virgo — the exact same degree of start of this current Venus retrograde. His moon is at the tail end of Scorpio and so he will have the Venus-Jupiter-Saturn Pileup right on top of his moon. This is very stressful but if anyone can steer through this and buck the internalized superiority of the EU leadership, it’s Tsipras. And Greece itself has Mars retrograde in its chart, indicating its resistance to external authority and ability to follow its own path, even if that path looks sideways and upside down to everyone else.
I hate to say this but the ancient Mayans believed Venus retro was a time of preparing for war. I hope that’s not the case! The Mayans thought Venus went to the underworld during the retrograde and became a warrior. So let’s take a look at what was going on globally the last time Venus was retrograde in 2014.
The focal places globally were the Ukraine, Iran, and the start of ISIS’ activities in the Middle East. I know, you don’t need to be an astrologer to see that these issues are likely to still be in the forefront. I think we will see more conflict between pro-Russian forces and the Ukraine. It was during Venus retrograde that Putin annexed Crimea and armed insurgencies occurred in southern and eastern Ukraine. So that situation is far from over. ISIS– there is likely to be more military intervention against them. ( Interestingly, just today Turkey agreed to allow the US to launch airstrikes from there against ISIS…) The last time Venus was retrograde, there were many barriers to negotiating a nuclear deal with Iran, and now we have a deal which has to be sold to the US Congress– no small feat. The Ebola epidemic in West Africa also occurred during Venus retrograde in 2014.
Venus retrograde can bring some closure to leftover issues from the last retrograde cycle. Let’s hope so! And the end of Venus’ retrograde pass during the first week of September is quite delightful… but more on that later!
June 30, 2015
July is a big month astrologically — two full moons …and…
(wait for it…)
Yes — Venus goes retrograde July 25th! This astrologer loves Venus retrograde, and allow me to explicate…
But before I do that, I have to share my astrological reflections about Saturn-Pluto-Uranus and the national tragedy that occurred in Charleston on June 17th.
I have written here many times (every month?) about the Uranus -Pluto square whose influence we have been under since 2011 and its reflection in systemic racism in the US. We are seeing the repressive and violent aspects of Uranus and Pluto acted out by systems of power (police, criminal justice etc) and also by individuals. The terrorist attack in Charleston was one more manifestation of this horror — not a lone act but an act that is deeply imbedded in and part of the fabric of the past and present of this society. We are also witnessing the work of a movement, the organizing for human rights and against the state sanctioned killing of Black people, and that’s part of the Uranus-Pluto aspect as well. We saw it in the 1960’s, when Uranus and Pluto were conjunct.
Saturn is actually in a closer aspect to Pluto than is Uranus right now — and under the influence of these titans we have an opportunity to face our demons. Under Saturn and Pluto we burn in the crucible of change. There is loss and death, and also rebirth. After all, Pluto is like Plutonium, like a nuclear blast. Many of us whites in this country are just waking up to the nuclear winter that racism creates.
Two weeks ago, it would have been unthinkable to see confederate flags coming down from flagpoles and down off of store shelves. It’s not everything but it is movement forward.
And remember that just as Pluto destroys it regenerates. Pluto represents slow development, step-by-step advancement. As of May, there were 11 chapters of #BlackLivesMatter around the country. That’s movement building. And in the last two weeks the antiracist organization SURJ (Stand up for Racial Justice) has been swamped with requests from whites seeking information about how to organize with other whites to support racial justice.
As The People’s Institute for Survival and Beyond teach in their Undoing Racism trainings: racism was created, so it can be un-done. That’s change. That’s Saturn and Pluto and Uranus for you.
So we are still under the general influence of Uranus and Pluto, and also Saturn and Pluto for the rest of the summer. The July 15 new moon could be a dramatic one for the planet. Sad to say, we are not done displaying humanity’s underbelly.
Back to Venus retrograde…All of the planets spend some time in retrograde motion, which is simply a function of Earth’s orbit relative to the orbits of other planets. It appears to us as if the other planets go backwards but in fact they don’t. (Please don’t go all linear on me — astrology is mostly about the observable universe.)
In any event, I don’t pay much attention to the outer planets being retrograde since they are retrograde a good deal of the time, but when it comes to the personal planets— Mercury, Venus, Mars — I believe these periods are fruitful, complicated, and completely necessary. The personal planets have to do with very immediate and personal parts of our psyches and our human lives, so during these pretty infrequent stretches of their retrogrades, we really feel the influence. The underside of the planet shows up on the surface, which can be very disconcerting. That’s why there is always so much carrying on about Mercury retrograde. We really notice the hiccups when what we expect to function in a linear way doesn’t.
So what happens when Venus goes retrograde every 18 months? Venus is a complex planet that has to do with relatedness. Popular culture tends to define that narrowly in terms of relationships, but in fact, Venus’ realm is that of values and ideals.
Remember that Venus rules both Taurus and Libra, and shows herself a bit differently in each of these manifestations. In the Taurean context, Venus is very much about worth and value. In the Libran, it is about the ideal, and the values that inform our ideals. Venus asks these questions: How do we experience relatedness in our lives? What is important to us? What has value? When Venus is retrograde, it is a six-week gift from the universe during which we become aware of where our lives are in sync with our values and where they are not. We may clearly realize that our heart isn’t in something we are doing. The flaws in relationships become evident. It is a time of reflection, not action.
During this upcoming stretch of Venus retrograde, it will be aspecting Saturn and Jupiter very closely at the start, making for really interesting reevaluations of our commitments and our investments of all kinds– time, energy money, you name it. This quality of reflection and reevaluation is what occurs on a personal level…
Politically, Venus retrograde is a whole other thing!
The ancient Mayans — who tracked the movements of Venus through sophisticated astronomical observation –believed that Venus retrograde was a time to prepare for war. The Sumerians believed that Venus retrograde was a period when Venus, queen of the heavens, took a trip to the underworld. Similarly, people with Venus retrograde in their natal charts have a unique and sometimes embattled relationship with how society defines femaleness. There can be a warrior goddess aspect to this energy, and in any case, Venus retrograde people hew very close to values that are typically not shared by the dominant culture. They march to the beat of a different drummer and feel fine about that.
So politically and globally, Venus retrograde is a precarious time when leaders can fall, when diplomacy can break through or utterly break down. It is a time when the political scene reshuffles and we may not see the re-formulation until after Venus goes direct. It is also a time when the earth goddess herself gets a tad rageful, and historically, dramatic weather and earth-related events and disasters constellate during these periods…
In order to understand what may occur, we need to look back 8 years ago to August 2007, the last time Venus retrograded from Virgo into Leo, and we also need to look at what unfinished business was left from the last Venus retrograde in January 2014….
Financial markets — Okay, remember 2007 anyone? It was the subprime market crisis. Once Venus turns retro on July 25 it moves into a close square to Saturn and then Jupiter catches up to both of them by the end of July. On a very literal level, Venus retrograde, Saturn and Jupiter are about money and investments. This looks to me like a major market adjustment….
July’s Important Dates
July 1 10:20 pm Full Moon at 9’55 Capricorn
July 1 and 2 Venus and Jupiter are exactly conjunct at 21′ Leo ! Go outside at night and and look west!
July 15 9:24 pm New Moon at 23’14 Cancer
July 25 5:29 am Venus station-direct at 0 degree Virgo
July 31 6:43 am Full Moon at 7’56 Aquarius
June 1, 2015
June is… um…interesting! Saturn and Pluto shake things up, Mercury turns direct June 11, and Mars and the Sun make for a busy few weeks.
First things first: there is Full Moon in Sagittarius tomorrow, June 2nd, at 12:20 pm. This lunation makes a tiny angle — only important to me and a handful of other astrologers– to the Saturn-Pluto half-square. Oy! In fact, Uranus moves 5 degrees past its square to Pluto this month — yes, this is a good thing — but Saturn has taken its place in relation to Pluto. Again I say Oy! especially loudly since this aspect is sitting on my head. Have you all noticed how many large earthquakes there have been over the past several days? (Nice timing of the San Andreas film, Hollywood! Do you have an astrologer in your marketing department?)
Saturn and Pluto. As I wrote last month, this combination shows our shadow side, and gives us an opportunity to wrestle with our demons and with power. Since Pluto entered Capricorn in 2009 I thought it would bring climate change and environmental justice to the fore. So yeah, expect some more shaking of the earth this month. And with the Sun and Mars conjunct most of June, which brings a a certain “soldier” energy to the planet, well, I’m expecting more of that too. Yeah, sorry folks. More men with guns being stupid.
Here is the good news: Saturn also brings stability and structure. Together with Pluto, it brings movement-building. This really is a time of tremendous organizing. The long-term organizing of #BlackLivesMatter contributed to Baltimore State’s Attorney Marilyn Mosby indicting Baltimore police officers in the killing of Freddie Gray. Change is deep and slow — but it comes with the kind of sustained work that Saturn and Pluto represent.
I also have a theory about Uranus moving a few degrees away from Pluto until they come back to their exact and final square this winter. I call it the rubber band effect. Even though the exact square isn’t happening now, pressure is building. That’s part of why so many people are so stressed out and having such a hard time, and why the world seems to be in such spasms of violence and distress.
The key word in this graphic is “unknown.” There is so much uncertainty and change built into this Uranus-Pluto angle. Just when you least expect it, it feels like the ground gives way under our feet. Not all of that is a bad thing, but it sure is unsettling.
Mercury retrograde has been contributing to the “surprise” factor:
The revelations about Dennis Hastert, the pushback against NSA meta-collection of data, the popularity of our favorite socialist, Sen. Bernie Sanders. Surprises abound.
Mars and the Sun in Gemini will also create the conditions for a busy and stimulating month. After the fog of Mercury retrograde, it will be a welcome relief!
June’s Important Planetary dates:
June 2 12:20 pm Full Moon at 11’49” Sagittarius
June 11 6:34 pm Mercury turns direct!!!
June 16 10:07 am New Moon at 25’07” Gemini
June 21 12:39 pm Summer Solstice!! Sun enters Cancer!
May 1, 2015
So allow me to break it down a bit. This is one intense month:
Yes, really. Mercury goes retrograde late on the 18th (950 pm EDT), the same day as the beautiful new moon I mention above…. Let me tell all of you right now– I would not travel on the 18th if I could help it. That day will be a mess in terms of weather and delays and complications. Just sayin’. Mercury will spend its retrograde pass in Gemini, the sign it rules, the ultimate sign of linear process and rationality. Oh boy! This will be fun! I love Mercury retrograde — but this one could be challenging. We should expect major tech annoyances….
It is retrograde until 633 pm EDT on June 11th.
Okay. The big delicious Scorpio full moon is May 3rd at 1142 pm EDT. Scorpio full moons are always delicious and intense and all about subtext. This one is all about those Jupiterian transitions, feeling our attachment to what we’re letting go of. Now that’s a good time so lay in the kleenex.
I’m not going to go into the Mars-Saturn hard work aspect because that one is self-explanatory.
So on to the really interesting part of the month: Pluto is in a more exact angle to Saturn than to Uranus, although to be sure, Uranus is still in the mix.
Saturn and Pluto….now that’s a powerful combo. It is about power and our collective shadow. It is about the Earth itself, about how we continue to hurt the earth that nurtures and sustains us. It is about climate change and environmental justice and organizing.
First of all, once the Sun enters Taurus, the quintessential earth sign, the earth itself roars and smacks us around. It’s no accident Earth Day occurs at the beginning of Taurus. So there tends to be major environmental events, earthquakes, volcano eruptions, exploding gas wells and the like when the Sun is in Taurus. This is especially true this year, when Uranus’s position really stirs the pot. And with Saturn spending a good part of May in a powerful angle to Pluto, the Earth becomes a raging goddess. I am expecting big weather events and more climate-related and human-created disasters this month. I am expecting many more people speaking truth to power about the earth itself.
Keep in mind April marked 5 years since the BP disaster in the Gulf, and this August is the 10th anniversary of Hurricane Katrina.
This Saturn-Pluto raging goddess I refer to brings accountability, and makes us look at the destructive side of ourselves. This aspect is also in play in the ongoing organizing by Black Lives Matter and other organizations seeking justice in the face of state killings of Black people. Introducing Saturn into the Uranus -Pluto aspect we have lived with on and off since 2011 makes accountability possible in what otherwise feels like a chaotic and capricious world.
We need her, this raging goddess.
April 2 2015
April starts off with a bang…
There is a Libra full moon and lunar eclipse at 6:16 am EDT on April 4th– the fourth eclipse in a row and the shortest eclipse of the century.
What’s going on is this: as I have been saying, the Uranus-Pluto square is very exact right now, and the degree of the full moon and eclipse falls very close to an angle with these titanic planets. And, Uranus in particular sits very close to an opposition with Zeus, one of the more explosive planets used in the Uranian system. Explosions, yes. Planes crashing, yes. Sorry folks. There was a big oil rig explosion this morning in the Gulf of Mexico.
The good news is that this month, Pluto retrogrades and Uranus continues forward, so the square will become less exact over the next few months.
I do believe that this period from the end-of-Pisces New Moon on March 20th and this Libra full moon has been very potent. The Sun-Lunar Node aspects are bringing a sense of relatedness to the fore, and so for example, homophobic laws in Indiana and Arkansas cannot stand.
I had thought that the Pisces New moon two weeks ago would put the focus on water. That seems to be the case, with Gov Jerry Brown implementing severe water restrictions in California.
Life is a bit crazy right now. We just have to roll with it! In the meantime, if you live in the western US, go out and watch the eclipse. And check out other nice planetary events — Venus, Saturn, and even Mercury put on a good show this month! Visible Planets in April
April’s important astrological events (times EDT)
April 4 616 am Lunar eclipse begins
April 4th 805 am Full Moon@ 14’24 Libra
April 18 257 pm New moon @28’25 Aries
Happy Earth Day April 22!
April’s planting days: best are 23, 24; good 3, 19, 20, 30
March 1 2015
And an awful lot of them are in Pisces. Thus the fish — the graphic is from my all-time favorite Dr Seuss book One Fish Two Fish Red Fish Blue Fish. Please allow me to remind you that the symbol of Pisces signifies two fish going in two directions.
“from here to there, from there to here, funny things are everywhere”
That sums up this month, I must say. First, the Uranus -Pluto square is very exact this month so we can expect to see more exploding trains carrying natural gas, more political violence around the globe, more uprisings, more Republican intransigence etc etc. I won’t belabor it.
Second, Saturn in Sagittarius is squaring Neptune in Pisces. We have had this influence in February and it continues in March until Saturn begins to retrograde away from Neptune and Neptune advances a bit forward. This is a murky and fabulously swampy time! It is great for insight and deep internal process, crappy for feeling like things ain’t moving. A friend described it to me as “quicksand.” Yes, that works. I think of it as a bit wetter — more like a swamp or bog. Whatever we call it, it has the energy of deep subterranean stuck-ness. Call me crazy but it is great for deeply intuitive processes.
The way to work with this influence is to let Neptune pull you under because Saturn will make sure you come back up.
Neptune is in Pisces right now, the sign it is said to rule. Pisces and Neptune both have to do with the ocean and everything the ocean signifies. Neptune represents the unconscious, the impulse to transcend our human individual boundaries, the urge to lose ourselves in something bigger. It’s pretty overwhelming — on a good day. It makes people mystics, artists, healers, and addicts.
Think of Saturn as a surfboard. Make sure your ankle is strapped onto it and enjoy the ride!
March 5th brings a Virgo full moon with major Venus-Uranus-Pluto aspects
This is a rather tension producing full moon and will be very interesting in terms of international diplomacy. On a personal level it will stimulate an acute desire for change.
March 20th is a big day! A new moon and solar eclipse precede the Spring Equinox
There is a new moon and solar eclipse at the tail tail end of Pisces that occurs but 10 hours before the Sun enters Aries and marks the Spring Equinox. Many transits on the 20th fall on the Earth axis. There will be big doings on the planet, that’s for sure. It is a very powerful new moon during which we should all focus on beginnings and endings, closure and next steps. And on peace and justice too!
Important March dates
March 5 1:05 pm Full moon at 14’50 Virgo
Be prepared: you know what I think about weather and full moons!
March 20 6:45 pm Sun enters Aries Happy Spring!
Best planting days March 27, 28 for above ground crops; 18,19 for root crops (the Taurus in my life asked me to add this info!)
February 3 2015
Happy Full Moon in Leo and belated Imbolc/Feast of Brigid!
February 1st/2nd is one of my favorite pagan holidays, and in Ireland it is known as Brigid’s day. Brigid, before she was one of Ireland’s patron saints, was the Fire Goddess. And is still, to this day. Here’s a shout-out to those wild and crazy Brigidine nuns who are dancing and leaping over fire even as I write. These past few days are a time to celebrate poetry, creativity, inspiration, and healing.
Just to add to the fiery fun there is a Full Moon in Leo today at 6:09 pm. Perfectly appropriate for this holiday, it illuminates self-expression and creativity.
But back to Mercury retrograde….
Yes, it is still retrograde, and it stays that way til February 11th. This has been a rather classic retrograde period of delays and weather drama. Remember that Mercury retrograde also signifies information surfacing in strange ways. Here’s one for the Mercury retro hit parade: The New York Times just reported that
|“…Alberto Nisman, the prosecutor whose mysterious death has gripped Argentina, had drafted a warrant for the arrest of President Cristina Fernández de Kirchner, accusing her of trying to shield Iranian officials from responsibility in the 1994 bombing of a Jewish center here, the lead investigator into his death said on Tuesday.|
|The 26-page document, which was found in the garbage at Mr. Nisman’s apartment, also requested the arrest of Héctor Timerman, Argentina’s foreign minister. ..” (emphasis added.)|
Wow. The warrant was found in the garbage. Like I said, classic Mercury retrograde. When it goes direct on the 11th, it will make a potent angle with Saturn and the earth axis…. That could be an interesting day globally in terms of technology and information!
Even though I usually love Mercury retrograde this one has thrown me for a loop. Is anyone else having this problem? Life is very demanding and it is particularly hard to focus, and even harder to make plans. Then there is the snow and the snow and the snow.
I always urge people to just go with the flow….Perhaps because Mercury is retrograding in Aquarius — a fixed air sign– it has been hard to move with it and not resist.
Remember that the day it changes can be very challenging !
This month brings a beautiful Venus-Mars conjunction…
Go out and view these planets in the western evening sky starting mid-February. They will be gorgeous! And they will bring us some good times and positive working relationships.
…and more Uranus-Pluto shenanigans worldwide
What can I say? We are having a rough time on this wee blue planet of ours. Keep the faith! Keep organizing!
And a Saturn-Neptune square
Harrumph. Saturn and Neptune together create a kind of bog. Such as a peat bog, like the one pictured here. (It’s Brigid’s influence — I seem to have Ireland on my mind!) Saturn just entered Sagittarius in late December and as it creep forward a few degrees it squares Neptune in Pisces. This is an interesting combo, but not easy. We will all really feel it after the 18th, once the Sun enters Pisces and gets into it with them. How to deal with this swampy influence? Saturn helps give form to the Neptunian waters so it is excellent for creative and spiritual practice. Gotta be disciplined, though, or else one can get lost in the bog. That’s not fun.
February’s Important Astrological Dates
February 3rd 6:09 pm Full moon @ 14’48 Leo
February 11th 9:57 am Mercury goes direct @ 1’21 Aquarius
February 18th 6:47 pm New Moon @ 29’59 Aquarius
February 18th 6:50 pm Sun enters Pisces
January 2 2015
2015 brings us the usual combo platter of astrological influences, some of what we have been experiencing and what we are sick of, and some new and interesting dynamics.
Here is my nutshell analysis. First, the Uranus-Pluto square which I have been yammering about for many months continues for the first half of 2015. Its influence weakens this summer and then returns for a while in 2016. So the endless tumult, the global spasms of revolution and repression, the ecological changes, etc etc… it’s all gonna continue through May. This planetary combination continues to make a significant angle to the Sun of the US, so our politics will continue to be fractious and explosive. (More on this below.)
On the retrograde front, we have Mercury retrograde in Aquarius this month, starting on January 21st until February 11th. There will be two additional stretches of Mercury retrograde, on May 18th and again on September 17th. You know the drill: Mercury retrograde isn’t bad, it’s just different. Activities ruled by Mercury: communication, short travel, and linear process will be affected. They will not function in a predictable, straightforward way. The key is to go with the flow.
Venus will be retrograde in Capricorn and Sagittarius from July 25th til September 6th. Venus retrograde is a fascinating time of becoming aware of one’s core values. Globally it is a time of huge uncertainty and instability. More on this in my July column.
Otherwise no other personal planets will retrograde this year — the outer planets spend half their lives being retrograde. I don’t emphasize their retrograde impact.
Saturn, one of my favorite planets, has just entered Sagittarius for the first time in 28 years
Ah Saturn– so cute and so complicated. It entered Sagittarius on December 23rd, and it will hang out in the early degrees of Sag until it retrogrades back into Scorpio in mid June. It leaves Scorpio and re-enters Sag in September where it stays until December 2017. Saturn in Sagittarius challenges us to believe in higher principles, to trust in the unseen and not be too stuck in our heads. It definitely pushes us all around issues of justice. It cautions us not to be dogmatic and rigid.
Interestingly, for the last few weeks and for a time in January, Saturn makes a powerful angle to the Uranus-Pluto square. I am calling this the Trifecta of Trouble– but in fact I’m joking… Saturn’s presence in this angle is giving some groundedness to influences that could just spiral out of control. Additionally, in January, Saturn advances in Sag a few degrees and gets within spitting distance of a square to Neptune. We should all take up meditation at the end of January…. really! This complicated combination can be paralyzing unless one engages a spiritual or creative practice.
But I want to talk about Pluto….
In these times of the ongoing Uranus-Pluto square, it is easy to polarize the meaning of these two planets and characterize Uranus as the “revolution” and Pluto as the “repression” in the dynamic. But it is actually more complicated than that. Both of these planets have their positive sides as well as their destructive sides. Uranus is the chaos principle. As the ruler of Aquarius, an air sign, it is also mental or ideological energy. It has to do with sudden change, upset, revolution. It is the lightning-bolt of brilliance. It can be dangerously rigid and ideological and so the shadow side of Uranus is the ability to ideologically justify all kinds of terror in the name of an ideal.
Pluto is a different force. It is like plutonium– it has tremendous destructive power. Yet it is also about creation, about the life cycle. Things are born, they grow, they age, they die. That is Pluto’s cycle. It represents the power of transformation from one state into another state. Change is often painful and dramatic and even bloody. All of that is Pluto. The life-giving side of Pluto is also about slow and hidden development, gestation.
I have often written that the last time Uranus and Pluto were in as significant a relationship to each other was in the 1960’s, a time of tremendous social change in the US and in the world. Here we are again. Of course, in the 60’s the two planets were conjunct in Virgo. Now we have Uranus in Aries and Pluto in Capricorn. We can see both the positive and shadow side of Pluto manifesting in the current human rights movement #BlackLivesMatter and the state’s response to it.
First, the recent and ongoing waves of protest against the extrajudicial killing of Black people is a movement. it has been developing for a while, in a Plutonic gestational way. These actions are not random or unplanned. Young people (and their allies) who are demanding change and being willing to put their lives on the line and disrupt business as usual are a clear expression of Uranus-Pluto liberatory energy. The response of the police is the shadow side of Pluto — state power trying to repress and suppress the movement.
We are in a revolution, folks. Pluto and Uranus — and Saturn in Sag — give us the ability to create a new and just world!
January ‘s important dates:
January 4th 11:53 pm Full Moon at 14’53 Cancer
January 20 4:44 am Sun enters Aquarius
January 20 8:14 am New Moon at 0’09 Aquarius
January 21 10:54 am Mercury goes retrograde at 17’05 Aquarius
December 2, 2014
The Uranus -Pluto square is exact this month.
We are living in extraordinary times. I was glued to the TV last week watching the events unfold in Ferguson MO and around the country, reminded of the 1960’s when images of clashes between police and Civil Rights Movement participants filled the grainy TV screens. As I have written in these pages before, the last time Uranus and Pluto made as intense an aspect was in the mid-1960’s,when those two planets were conjunct in Virgo.
Yesterday we marched in Akron OH, as scores of people have been doing all week across the US and the world, standing up for human rights and racial justice. Last night a group of young African American men testified to Akron City Council about how many times police have drawn their guns on them.
This is one side of the Uranus and Pluto square. Our underbelly is showing.
This is the Plutonic “shadow side” of the white American psyche, the fear, hatred, and objectification of people of color, especially of African Americans, which has been spectacularly on display lately in part in reaction to having an African American President. White fear of the “Other” just can’t help itself from spilling out all over the place. The repressive side of Pluto is manifesting through the police and criminal justice system. The way the Grand Jury process was handled, the announcement of the Ferguson Grand Jury decision — calculated to occur at night thus upstaging all the planned actions and protests– as well as the speech by the Prosecutor were extraordinary displays of structural racism.
These events, happening on the heels of the murders of Trayvon Martin, Oscar Grant, John Crawford, and many others (Tamir Rice in Cleveland just last weekend) , are galvanizing renewed calls for national action. Uranus and Pluto together always signify uprising as well as repression, a clash of forces.
This month Saturn makes a half-square to Uranus and Pluto.
Saturn in the midst of this already volatile combination can make the actions of the state even more bold-faced. Yet Saturn also adds a dose of structure, of form. Let’s hope that Saturn helps give form to this burgeoning movement and gives it the support necessary to grow and expand and sustain itself.
Keep in mind that Pluto isn’t all about repression and the shadow. It also has a regenerative aspect.
Right now it is helping to regenerate the movement for full human rights. Pluto is helping us ask the question: How can we repair the great harm that has been done and that this society continues to do towards people of color?
And the last time Uranus and Pluto were in this kind of close aspect, this country spawned powerful movements: Civil Rights, Anti-War, Women’s, Gay Liberation. Was it a violent and volatile period? yes. Did we see a great deal of state violence? Yes. Did people keep standing up for justice in spite of it? Yes.
Change is hard and scary. Speaking truth to power is hard and scary — that’s why these times we are in feel so unsettled.
The Gemini Full Moon on December 6th has strong Mercury aspects and is a great lunation for organizing!
The planets are well positioned this month for inspired and lively debate and energetic action — all the Sagittarian fire of Sun, Venus, and Mercury, fueled by the air of Mars in Aquarius, and the Gemini full moon. It is a full moon for strategizing and planning.
December’s important dates
December 6 7:27 am Full Moon at 14’18 Gemini
December 21 6:03 pm Winter Solstice! Sun enters Capricorn
December 21 8:36 pm New Moon at 0’06 Capricorn
November 4, 2014
Yes, indeed, it has been quite the roller coaster ride! It is hard to make sense out of the times we live in, from Ebola virus to a major geopolitical disaster in Middle East… And even as I write I am not sure how closely I can bear to listen to the midterm election results this evening just yet. I don’t want to engage in political punditry but let me say this much: the Moon has been in Aries today, crossing over Uranus and squaring Pluto… Gee, that could facilitate some good old-fashioned American individualism at the polls (not good) but also could tell us to expect the unexpected (could be good?) . Things may not go as badly as the 500 emails in my inbox per day have been predicting … The Jupiter -Saturn square is good for something, not the least of which might be rejecting complete Tea Party lunacy.
We will see.
The past few weeks have been a stark reminder that the Uranus-Pluto square is tightening up again.
Sorry to say it but it’s true. We have another year-plus of this tumult. Wars and more wars, crazy violence, men acting badly with knives and guns, environmental disasters, volcanoes spewing, you name it. Remember that these influences combine the shock and suddenness of Uranus with the repression of Pluto. Our underbelly shows in a period like this — all our unconscious fears together with the ineptitude of systems makes for a very unpleasant soup. We are seeing this with the ridiculously paranoid and ineffective response to the Ebola virus.
November highlights the current Jupiter-Saturn square. The issue is money, honey.
Venus is very prominent this month, first conjunct the Sun in Scorpio at the start of the month, and then moving into position with the Jupiter Saturn square the week of the 9th. This has to do with resource distribution, how we care for each other and for the earth. Keep in mind that on the 6th is a Taurus full moon which falls on the earth axis along with Venus. At the same time that Venus aspects the Jupiter Saturn square Mars in Capricorn aspects Pluto in Capricorn and squares Uranus in Aries.
The world will be tumultuous and something political or environmental may set off some worldwide financial volatility, requiring careful planning and a great deal of level headedness when the Sun in Scorpio catches up to Jupiter and Saturn around the 15th.
Important November dates
November 6 5:23 pm EST Full Moon at 14’26 Taurus
November 22 4:38 am EST Sun enters Sagittarius (woo hoo!)
November 22 7:32 am EST New Moon at 0’07 Sag
October 2, 2014
October brings us two eclipses and Mercury retrograde!
Despite the hype, Mercury retrograde isn’t a bad thing! Really — you can trust me on this! Yes, it can be annoying but our lives would be very boring without those pesky retrograde planets….
October 4th is a big day
Mercury goes retrograde Saturday October 4th at 1:02 pm EDT in the very early degrees of Scorpio but it inches back into Libra by October 10th.
So have some Satisfying Atoning — it’s Yom Kippur. And Happy Feast of St Francis…
I love the idea of bringing the animals to church to be blessed –it seems like the epitome of a retrograde event! All those cats and other critters going in different directions…
For those of you who think that Mercury is retrograde all the time….
It actually isn’t. It occurs four times a year and each stint lasts three weeks. Mercury retrograde means that the functions ruled by Mercury — linear thinking, time, communication, short travel, digital processes — do not operate in a very linear fashion. I like to think of it as a kind of dreamtime. So when Mercury is retrograde, those linear things can go awry, and a more intuitive process takes over. It does not mean that everything goes wrong, but it does mean that going with the flow works better than forcing a linear process. This pass of Mercury lasts til October 25th. Because it spends most of its time in Libra, if you are a Libra or Aries this might be a harder stretch for you…
And what’s the deal with the Full Moon and Eclipse on October 8th?
We are in a period of 4 lunar eclipses that occur every six months. This upcoming full moon is called the Hunter’s Moon and also the Blood Moon — in part due to its reddish color as it sits near the horizon. For the real astronomical deal on the eclipses and the Full Moon and some great graphics, check out EarthSky.
This is not the end of the world, folks. It’s just an eclipse– which happens all the time.
The significance of this full moon and eclipse astrologically is that it occurs at 15 degrees Aries, alongside the planet Uranus. It is likely to be explosively dramatic and …ummm, volcanic. That it occurs in Aries, and that Mars will be squaring Chiron at the same time suggests to me that this full moon will shine a spotlight on war and violence. Chiron’s presence may challenge us to demand an end to war. What a concept!
Jupiter in Leo squares Saturn this month…usually that’s about the stock market
Jupiter and Saturn may bring us a “correction” in the stock market, and since Venus is so prominent this month — Venus catches up to the Sun by the 15th — it will bring a focus on resources and financial security. We may be asking ourselves questions about how much we need, about our consumption of resources…..These transits coming on the heels of the Climate Change marches make me think the health of the globe will be central in our reflections…. Jupiter and Saturn are an interesting combination — Jupiter moderates the severity of Saturn and Saturn ratchets down Jupiter’s excess. This influence all month should inspire some soundness, some good sense. The resource questions will come especially into play around the Scorpio New Moon on the 23rd.
October’s important dates:
October 4th 1:02 pm EDT Mercury goes retrograde
October 8th 6:51 am EDT Full Moon/Lunar Eclipse @ 15’05 Aries
October 23 7:57 am EDT Sun enters Scorpio
October 23 5:57 pm EDT New Moon/Solar Eclipse @ 0’25 Scorpio
October 25 3:17 pm EDT Mercury turns direct!
and Happy Halloween! Have a chat with your ancestors!
September 13, 2014
Mars is about to enter Sagittarius and I now have an easy on-line appointment booking system. Yay!
September 1, 2014
It goes without saying that the last month or two has been really insane on the global front…
and your astrologer is trying to make sense of it.
This is a very tough time for the world, and it is difficult to interpret what is happening around us. Like many of you, I have been reeling from national and world events. I have been glued to the news about events in Ferguson MO and stunned by the tailspin in the Middle East. It feels as though we have been lurching from one war to another. Then there is the Ebola virus outbreak. And a dramatic series of environmental disasters — human made ones in British Columbia and Toledo OH and the usual earthquakes brought to us by Mother Earth herself. I could go on but I don’t have to…. We are in pretty deep stuff here. I also know that the drama isn’t only occurring on the world stage — it is highly personal as well.
I had thought Jupiter would bring some relief and that the Uranus and Pluto upheavals would settle down. Wrong!
As I have ruminated about this, it has been helpful to go back to the 1960’s, the last time Uranus and Pluto were in as major an aspect as they are now. Keep in mind that Uranus and Pluto have been in a 90-degree angle to each other on and off since 2011. This is a hell-raising, destructive, liberatory, movement -building, violent, systems -smashing combination. It is all of that now and it was back then in the 1960’s when those two planets sat together in Virgo. Those of us who recall the 60’s may remember that it was not gentle. It was not all sweetness and light and love and flower power. There were violent clashes between social movements and government systems. There was war. There were huge confrontations in the US about racism. They were people speaking truth to power who were met with police dogs, bullets, and murder.
I have written about Uranus and Pluto as a clash of the titans. These outer planets, as we astrologers call them, are complex forces that are personal and transpersonal. They are difficult to hold consciously and they frequently manifest through collective actions. The shadow side to these forces can be terrible and terrifying, radically destructive. And there is always a growthful side, a positive manifestation, which can be difficult to distinguish amidst the rubble… Things break down under this transit, and new things do take shape. It brings out the best and the worst of human behavior.
Early 2016 will be the last time Uranus and Pluto make this angle — that is the good news. We are almost done with it. Really.
I am afraid that this will be our condition on and off for the next year and a half…..This aspect has fallen squarely on the Sun of the US this year and will again in the first half of 2015. The US has been going through an intensely polarizing time, and will continue to for the next 9 months.
If astrology has one thing to teach us it is that nothing ever stays the same…The late great musician Shirley Horn had it right.
Check out this wonderful rendition of her classic “Everything Must Change” by Chaka Khan and Simply Red:
Meanwhile September brings us the Fall Equinox and interesting Neptune aspects…
It’s a month of uncertainty, that’s for sure! There are major Jupiter aspects right before, during and after the Equinox on the 22nd. This may bring all the various world conflicts to a head. We all may want to meditate on peace on the New Moon…..
September 8 9:39 pm EDT Full Moon at 16’19 Pisces
September 22 10:30 pm EDT Fall equinox: Sun enters Libra
September 24 2:15 am EDT New Moon at 1’08 Libra
August 1, 2014
I mean, really, what the heck is going on?!
Are you wondering why things have been so weird?
Jupiter entered Leo for the first time in 12 years just a couple of weeks ago on July 16th. Most notably the Sun caught up with Jupiter between July 20 and 25….Now Mercury has entered Leo and is moving across Jupiter. Mars is in Scorpio, making a 90-degree angle to Jupiter. Venus will sit with Jupiter for a few days starting August 15th — looking forward to that one!
We are used to thinking of Jupiter as the planet of great good fortune – and it is in many ways. But it is actually the planet of fortune, or fate.
And fate can be good or bad. When Jupiter comes round, it represents the turning of the wheel of fortune, the beginning as well as the end of cycles. It is the energy of development, of fruition — so things can come to a head. That Jupiter is in Leo makes its energy quite big and fiery, and as a big old gassy planet Jupiter just enhances the energy of the planets it aspects.
There’s quite a bellicose tone to the Jupiter square to Mars right now. I’m talking about war, of course.
Mars is in Scorpio, after traveling through Libra for months and months and months….and months. Part of what is occurring now on the world stage (Israel and Gaza) is the slingshot effect from Mars turning direct in lat May. All that Martian energy was building up and was finally released in June and July.
For the first week of August, Jupiter and Mercury square Mars. Mercury and Mars are a scrappy combination! Jupiter just exaggerates it. In addition, the Moon in the chart of Israel sits in the first few degrees of Leo — right where the Jupiter-Mercury – Mars pile up is happening. The Moon in the chart of a nation signifies the public — the kind of emotional tone of the body politic. It’s pretty combative at the moment. Jupiter doesn’t move past this point til late August. And right now, Saturn in Scorpio is making an angle to the Saturn in Israel’s chart….it is passing through its first house, which is all about identity. It also doesn’t move away til late August.
The Virgo New Moon on August 25th could create an opening for diplomatic breakthroughs
It will be a fascinating and powerful new moon, with Venus in Leo making an angle to Saturn and Mars. This combination is all about really intense shared effort. Let’s hope for a cease fire!
Speaking of Leo and speaking of force, it’s President Obama’s birthday on August 4th: May the Force Be With Him
The Mars Jupiter business figures strongly in his chart for the year starting on his birthday. He’ll have his Moon in Scorpio for the year, thank god. That’s a good combination for effective fighting. Welcome, Gladiators!
Important August dates
August 10 4:10 pm Full moon at 18 02 Aquarius
I wouldn’t recommend traveling that day if you can help it! Saturn Mercury transit delays!
August 23 12:47 am Sun enters Virgo
August 25 10:14 am New Moon at 2 19 Virgo
Let’s hope for cease fires!
Really — nothing went today the way that I planned! the day Mercury turns around can be very changeable!
July brings some intensity … then release!
Thank god. This first week of July –kicked off by the Supreme Court decisions Monday– highlights issues of repression and control. Great. Next week brings increasing tension on the world stage, thanks to a Sun-Uranus square in advance of the full moon in Capricorn on July 12.
Not to be overly grim, but this could be a rough marching season in Northern Ireland, where July 12th is a really big day for Loyalists to engage in triumphalist exhibitions of domination over Irish Catholics…. There have already been KKK flags flying in Loyalist neighborhoods in East Belfast…
First there are interesting Sun -Mars aspects followed by Sun Jupiter ones….
On a personal level these aspects are likely to be satisfying, and yet it is somewhat more complex globally. Besides having to do with decisive and productive action, these combinations have to do with soldiering…. There are plenty of explosive places around the globe where the US is heavily invested: Iraq, Syria, Israel, to name a few. The Sun Jupiter aspects have a patriarchal side …. All the Cancer energy brings to mind that the US has a Cancer Sun — its birthday, after all, is July 4th. Remember that although we think of Cancer as a sign connected to nurturance and femaleness, its nature can be protective or even protectionistic.
However they appear, issues about Dad will be up for everyone…
July really does offer us some relief from the last few months of Uranus-Pluto intensity. Really — I swear! Uranus and Pluto are several degrees away from the potent square with each other. Woo hoo! The Sun and Jupiter are primarily about fulfillment and meaning, completion and closure. There are beautiful aspects this month, especially towards the end of the month and on the New Moon in Leo on the 26th. And — Saturn turns direct on the 20th, bringing us more relief.
Important July Dates
July 1st 850 am Mercury goes direct!
July 12th 7 26 am Full Moon at 20’o3″ Capricorn
July 25th 10 26 pm Mars enters Scorpio– after months and months in Libra!
July 26th 10 43 pm New Moon at 3’52 Leo
June 2, 2014
And did I mention that Mercury goes retrograde on June 7th?
What can I say? If it’s not one planet, it’s another! But seriously, this is quite a month. The start of this month feels calm, but let’s not be fooled. Mars is in full-steam-ahead-mode, and it is releasing all of the pent up energy from its 2 1/2 months of retrograde… It crosses over the same degrees in Libra but this time moving direct, spending over a week squaring Pluto and then half of the month opposing Uranus.
Social Change and Mars Direct
As those of you know who know me and who read my astrological writing, I love to observe — and participate in — the body politic. Looking at political events and pop culture helps me hone my understanding of planetary influences on a collective level. So… there has been a lot going on since Mars turned around on May 19th. Keep in mind that Mars spent all of May involved in the angle between Uranus and Pluto.
Uranus and Pluto have everything to do with social change, the urge to liberation and the crackdown of repression. Pluto entered Capricorn at the end of 2008 (for the first time in over 200 years! ) and this transit has had a great deal to do with a kind of reckoning about the earth itself and our treatment of it. Pluto in Capricorn also has to do with resources, with fossil fuels. Uranus in Aries has been making a 90 -degree angle to Pluto on and off since 2011, increasing the pace of climate change and frequency of dramatically destructive environmental events.
So during May, when Mars was in the midst of the Uranus -Pluto angle, pressure was building and building about the environment. Since Mars turned direct on May 19th, the energy has been released and now mainstream media is talking about climate change in no uncertain terms. It feels like a sea change….
Mars in Libra — which has so much to do with equality — is also helping focus attention on gender discrimination and misogyny. The levels of violence against women worldwide continue to be off the charts — that is one thing which sadly has not changed. Since Mars went direct, it’s all over the news.
Thank you Mars and Pluto and Uranus — and lots of fine community organizing.
So Mars direct squaring Pluto and opposing Uranus this month is likely to bring a whole lot more tumult and violence … in exactly those places that have been focal for the past two months.
And Mercury goes retrograde June 7th til July 2nd.
Don’t sweat it — really. It starts its retrograde pass in Cancer — yumm, dreamy! — and then moves back into Gemini June 17. That’s when it might be problematic in term of technology and travel. But otherwise you gotta love it. Let your intuition flow! Just don’t make big decisions — let them emerge from your unconscious. And pay attention to your dreams!
Important June dates
June 13 12:13 am Full Moon at 22’06” Sagittarius
June 21 6:52 am Sun enters Cancer — Summer Solstice!!
June 27 4:10 am New moon at 5′ 37″ Cancer
June 1, 2014
The Sun’s in Gemini, the Moon is in Cancer, Mercury retrograde is coming…. and your astrologer is hopelessly distracted by gardening imperatives.
Gotta get that Oakleaf Hydrangea in the ground before the Moon enters Leo!
May 1, 2014
Happy May Day! Today marks the midpoint between the Spring Equinox and the Summer Solstice.
And Mars retrograde ends on May 19th…
You weren’t looking for relief, were you?
Oh this Mars retrograde! It sure has exposed some overtly aggressive and utterly inhumane behavior, especially since April 8th when it opposed the Sun….. Just over the past week we have seen the Cliven Bundy and Donald Sterling debacles. Then in another stunning example of Mars aggression gone awry, the tragically botched execution in Oklahoma. Then of course, the Republican filibuster to prevent an increase in the minimum wage, the Supreme Court’s attack on affirmative action….The list goes on.
Here is the thing: Mars slows almost to a standstill this month, moving only a couple of degrees throughout May as it approaches and leaves its turnaround on the 19th. It may be slow but it is still powerful. Think of how much energy it takes to reverse direction! That is what Mars is doing.
So this month, energy is actually building towards a point of release. Emotionally we will feel a release after the 19th but we won’t be able to do anything about our newfound clarity and urge to confront things. We may all feel really unsettled after the 19th until the Sun trines Mars at the very start of June.
Conflicts that have become evident during this Mars retrograde period may become full blown at the end of May. Ah yes, keep your eye on Vladimir Putin and Eastern Ukraine.
Keep in mind that the day Mars turns around could be very weird in terms of plans and events and impulses. I would say the 19th and 20th are guaranteed to be odd!
Yay! Uranus and Jupiter pull away from Pluto this month.
Jupiter is moving forward in Cancer, and Uranus in Aries. Pluto is retrograding in Capricorn. Mars retrograde is also pulling away from the big planetary pileup of April 22-23. This is all good– the very exact square of Uranus and Pluto becomes less and and less exact over the next few months and isn’t exact again til December. (The square will be close in the fall but not exact.) The influence this month is much more that of Jupiter-Uranus, which is always good for surprising turns of events. The overall energy is shifting….I hope we’ll see the seismic activity calm down and a lessening of global drama.
It makes its exact opposition to the Sun on May 10-11th.
Important Planetary Events in May
May 1st: Happy Beltane, an important holiday in the pagan calendar! Believe it or not it was the start of summer to the ancient Celts!
And Happy International Workers Day!
May 14 3:17 pm EDT Full Moon at 23’55” Scorpio
May 19 9:32 pm EDT Mars turns direct at 9’01” Libra!
May 20 11:00 pm EDT Sun enters Gemini
May 28 2:41 pm EDT New Moon at 7’21” Gemini
April 19, 2014
Mars retrograde is just about a degree away from the Jupiter-Uranus-Pluto big combo on the sky…
This is a big weekend ! Follow my daily astrological musings on my Patricia Maher Astrology Facebook page…
March 31, 2014
Get ready for April!
Astrologers are in a swivet over April’s planetary events!
What’s all the fuss about?
As all of you know who have been following my column, we have been under the influence of a major angle between Uranus in Aries and Pluto in Capricorn on and off for the last couple of years. And, over the past few months, Jupiter in Cancer has added to the mix. The Uranus-Pluto effect has been very dramatic, personally and politically. We are in a period of immense change and transformation, with explosive expressions of liberation back to back with intense repression. The effect of this planetary transit can be shattering, liberating, transformative. The last time Uranus and Pluto have been in as intense a relationship was during the 1960’s, when they were conjunct in the sign Virgo. Add Jupiter into the picture and the the influences get bigger. It has put the spotlight on Big Oil, and especially on big oil and gas explosions. Keep in mind however that Jupiter does create the opportunity for positive development. Among other things, it has been highlighting the disparities between wealth and poverty.
On March 1st, Mars began its two-and-a-half-month long retrograde stint in a late degree of Libra. This fascinating transit surfaces a more creative and less predictable side of Mars. It happens to be retrograding in Libra, and during the third week of April, on April 22nd to be exact, it reaches a degree of Libra (13 degrees) that puts it into a perfect square with Jupiter and Pluto and a perfect opposition to Uranus. It makes what we astrologers call a Grand Cardinal Cross.
This will likely be a very interesting Earth Day!
Many astrologers are predicting major global crises with this transit. I believe it is serious — but only because the Uranus-Pluto square is intense and serious — but not new. There is not a lot that is new here, except that the angles are very exact– again. (Uranus and Pluto come into an exact square 7 times between 20111 and 2015. Whew– it’s almost over.) That it involves Mars retrograde is fascinating because Mars retrograde is kind of a Trickster, so unexpected events could occur. I believe I would be more concerned if Mars were direct….. Still, Mars is a trigger, and these are potent and explosive forces.
I have been observing a noticeable increase in seismic activity around the globe over the past two weeks, and I do believe this planetary configuration could certainly show up in the form of very dramatic and destructive environmental events.
The earth may have a lot to say to us!
Politically speaking, there are two things that jump out at me: one is that the degree of the US’s Sun also falls at 13 degrees of Cancer, so the US is smack in the middle of whatever this Grand Cross has to bring. As is Vladimir Putin, whose Sun is at 13 degrees Libra.
The Uranus-Pluto-Jupiter configuration with Mars retrograde has everything to do with power, secrecy, economic development, and natural resources.
I am looking forward to that aspect of this transit, the surprising and Trickster-ish aspect. The “norm” in this case may be to wring our hands and expect the worst.
Terrible things happen all the time — it’s the creative solutions that are way less visible or predictable.
I’m counting on Mars retrograde to show us the way through.
Important dates in April
The full moon on April 15th is the first in a series of four total lunar eclipses visible in the US during 2014-2015. Read this article in EarthSky for more information.
April 15 3:43 am EDT Full Moon at 25’16 Libra
Total eclipse at 3:47 am
April 19 11:57 pm Sun enters Taurus
April 29 2:15 am New Moon at 8 52 Taurus
and a “non-central annular” solar eclipse at 2:04 am
And a message to my readers: if you are not receiving the e-newsletters from me each month that announce my monthly column, please do two things. First, let me know, and second, make sure that your email security allows me via Constant Contact as a safe sender. (Go to http://support2.constantcontact.com/articles/FAQ/2753 for how to do this.) A number of you have not been getting them and I have no way of knowing who you are!
March 17, 2014
Mars retrograde update….
First, there is the utter weirdness of the Malaysian Air plane disappearance. It is so in keeping with Mars retrograde that the plane actually reversed course, not to mention the confusing circumstances and lack of clarity.
Then, the Crimea. Putin. Need I say more?
Here’s another one: Senator Dianne Feinstein, the big defender of the CIA and their seamy tactics, denounces them on the Senate floor for spying on her own staff. How is that for irony?
As I said a few weeks ago, this month will continue to be difficult. Just a heads up: the planet is rockin’ and rollin’. There have been a lot of earthquakes in the last week or two — not to mention this morning in Chile and California. The Pacific is really jumping, and I believe we could see some big ones between now and March 30th.
March 17th is the day to plant peas, so get out into your gardens! The moon is in Libra which is good for flowering plants. And yes, it is also St Patrick’s Day, about which I am ambivalent. Yes, I’m named for him but his work in Ireland marked the beginning of the end of the pagan religion. So why would I like him? I prefer Brigid’s Day or Candlemas on February 2nd, and of course, the Spring Equinox just three days away on the 20th!
And a message to my readers: if you are not receiving the e-newsletters from me each month that announce my monthly column, please do two things. First, let me know, and second, make sure that your email security allows me via Constant Contact as a safe sender. (Go to http://support2.constantcontact.com/articles/FAQ/2753 for how to do this.) A number of you have not been getting them and I have no way of knowing who you are!
March 2, 2014
The start of Mars retrograde highlights issues of power and control…..
March 1st brought us a big new moon in Pisces which was all about removing obstacles to self expression. That, in combination with Mars retrograde aspecting Venus and the North Node, is making it easy for people to throw their weight around in relationships…
Mars retrograde in part means that the Ukraine isn’t going to take it sitting down. Putin, a Libra, sees no reason not to exert force.
In addition, this month Uranus moves quite quickly into its exact square with Pluto. By the end of March, the Uranus and Pluto square will be nearly exact, so we will see an increase in global instability, violence, environmental crises, and craziness as the month goes on. Sorry to say it, folks! The new moon in Aries on March 30th falls just a few degrees away from Uranus, so expect some drama.
This will be an interesting month!
Mars retrograde also means an opportunity for surprising resolutions
As much as it is about power struggles, Mars retrograde is about process, not outcome,. In all of these situations that seem disastrous there is an opportunity for transformation through Jupiter, Uranus and Pluto. Mars retrograde always means we should expect the unexpected, even in the midst of conflict. One thing we can expect in this period is for impulses that are normally suppressed to be more likely to come to the surface. There are likely to be major power struggles here in the US as well, played out on the governmental level as well as on the ground.
For example, this will be a time when the intractability of racism in the white American psyche will be unavoidable. (I mean, how many “Stand Your Ground” murders of unarmed Black teenagers does it take?) That means it is a great time for anti-racist organizing.
Read below for last week’s longer analysis of the meaning of Mars retrograde……
Important March dates:
March 1st 2:59 am New Moon at 10’39” Pisces
March 1st 1:25 pm Mars retrograde begins at 27’31” Libra
March 16th 1:08 pm Full Moon at 26’02” Virgo
March 20th 12:57 pm Spring Equinox- Sun enters Aries!
March 30th 2:45 pm New Moon at 9’59” Aries
February 23, 2014
This has been an extraordinary couple of months: Venus retrograded from the end of December til the end of January, Mercury started its retrograde pass on Feb 6th and ends on February 28th, and then Mars goes retrograde on March 1st. Wow — we don’t get a breather!
This astrologer loves it when the personal planets such as Mercury, Venus, and Mars are retrograde (keep in mind that the outer planets spend much of their orbits being retrograde so it is not nearly as significant). I know, I’m weird. The retrogrades give us a wonderful opportunity to experience a less dominant version of that planet’s energy. How great is that? It’s important — theese periods push us and stretch us.
However, I must admit that this stretch of Mercury retrograde has been awful for me and for a number of people I know, especially those of born at the start of Gemini, Virgo, Sag and Pisces. Grrr. And, these past few days Mercury retro has squared Saturn, which has definitely upped the crankiness factor. It will be over soon– on Friday the 28th at 9 am as a matter of fact.
Mars retrograde is an unusual and very long transit
So what does it mean when Mars goes retrograde? First of all, it doesn’t happen much, and so we really are not used to it. Mars only retrogrades once every two and a half years, and when it retrogrades it’s not for a mere 3 or 6 weeks but for about 12 + weeks. This one is from March 1st til May 19th. I know, I know– you’re thinking “are you kidding me?!”
In order to understand Mars retrograde we have to understand Mars
We typically think of Mars in terms of conflict and aggression but this is a very limited view. Mars is quite a complex energy, and yes, there is an aspect of it that can manifest as conflict — although it doesnt have to. Mars has at least two qualities — a more primitive instinctual side, and a socially acceptable purposeful side. Mars is the energy of action, direction, the will, instinct, goals — anything that moves forward with a plan is in the realm of Mars. Mars has a great deal to do with work, with productive effort, with building things. The association with conflict and aggression has to do with the Roman war god for whom is named. Even in Roman mythology, Mars had to do with military capability being an aspect of leadership. So yes, there is a testosterone connection, for sure, but it is more about leadership than necessarily about maleness or manhood. It is easier to understand Mars by contemplating Aries, the sign it is said to rule, astrologically speaking. Mars embodies the fiery, leading, instinctual expression of Aries, and as such it is a very important aspect of the Self.
Mars retrograde is not bad! It’s just different.
(Many of my favorite people have it in their charts, after all!) Whenever a planet is retrograde, the parts of it that are more repressed, suppressed, and unconscious tend to come to the surface. This is why many people get so irritated during Mercury retrograde, because all those typically linear processes of technology, travel and communication tend not to function that way during the retrograde phase. During the Venus retrograde phase we just went through in January, for example, many people’s deepest values surfaced and brought clarity to situations that needed to change.
During Mars retrograde, unconscious or suppressed passions and instincts may come out, surfacing power struggles or places where we need more freedom. In addition, it is a time in which process is way more important than outcome, and where the best-laid plans can go in a completely sideways direction….
So that’s fun, right? And here are some more juicy tidbits about it: it goes retrograde in Libra, not the most comfortable place for Mars. This will definitely put the focus on relationships. We will all run smack into our ideals and projections and end up with some bruises, no doubt. Interestingly, it starts its retrograde pass making a 90-degree angle (important!) to where Venus started its retrograde stretch on December 21. There will be some rebalancing of roles in relationships….. And even more interesting, Mars ends its retrograde pass in May making a big angle to the Uranus-Pluto-Jupiter pile-up in the sky. Oy!
Pointers for getting the most out of Mars retrograde…..
Expect the unexpected! Really! When things don’t move in a straight line there are all kinds of creative possibilities.
If you find yourself in conflict, learn from it. Something important is surfacing about power and freedom. Remember that everyone is feeling equally put upon or thwarted.
If you are an Aries, Cancer, Libra, or Capricorn this stretch of Mars retrograde will have a particularly strong effect on you. What can I say, honey? It is a time to learn about yourself through your intense reactivity!
Mars goes retrograde Saturday March 1st at 11:24 am, at 27’32” Libra. Oh, and there is a New Moon on Pisces at 2:50 am on the 1st as well!
More on that next week!
February 3, 2014
Bye bye Venus retrograde, hello Mercury retrograde
Ah yes, tis the season of retrogrades! Venus turned back around on the 31st, and on February 6th, Mercury goes retrograde for its usual three weeks. Then, we get the high point of retrograde action on March 1st when Mars turns retrograde…. but more on that in my next column!
This stretch of Mercury retrograde begins in early Pisces and retrogrades back into late Aquarius, catching up to the Sun in Aquarius on the February 14th full moon. Oy! This is likely to be a very messy stretch of Mercury retrograde. In fact, for anyone out there whose birthdays are in the first few days of Pisces, Gemini, Virgo, or Sagittarius, this Mercury transit might be really…..ummm…vexing. Mercury is in early Pisces right now, getting only as far as 3 degrees by Thursday the 6th when it goes retrograde. Then it slowly moves backwards until it re-enters Aquarius on the 13th. As a first day of Sag baby myself, I am feeling it. The technological breakdowns have already started as has really chunky communication. So — all of us should try to go with the flow. (Yes, I am trying to talk myself into equanimity!) It is heavily influenced by Neptune all week long—good for intuition and inspiration as well as some spectacularly bad weather.
And — amazing for dreaming! Have you noticed what an intense few days this has been for dream life?
The full moon on the 14th will exacerbate the Mercury retro annoyances of travel mishaps and delays. If you must travel, be prepared and try to stay relaxed.
But really, Mercury retrograde isn’t a bad thing — it’s just different!
It’s a time when the non linear and dreamy parts of Mercury are more evident… Since Mercury rules linear thought processes, communication, and short travel, those parts of life may not operate smoothly during this three-week stretch. Mercury retrograde is wonderful for inspiration and intuition, for learning important information in surprising ways.
And wasn’t Venus retrograde fascinating ?
It was a very interesting six weeks, that’s for sure! On the personal level it was a time for clarifying values. Politically it was a roller coaster, and as I said last month, Venus retrograde can bring political leaders to their knees. Here is my Venus retrograde hit parade:
Chris Christie and Bridgegate! Really.
Mass protests all month in the Ukraine have challenged Pres. Yanukovych’s government, and he takes a “sick leave…” Really!
Ariel Sharon, who went into a coma the last time Venus was retrograde in Capricorn, died under this pass of Venus retro.
The government of Turkey is increasingly unstable due to a massive corruption scandal.
Peace talks about Syria began during this pass of Venus retrograde. We may have to wait for Venus to retrograde again before resolution, sad to say….. and that’s not until July 2015.
February brings powerful Jupiter angles
A powerful Venus-Jupiter-Pluto aspect is in effect for the first week of February. Venus moves on but leaves the Jupiter Pluto opposition for a couple of weeks, and then Jupiter retrograde aspects Uranus. So this first week of February there will be a kind of closure to things, especially to those relationships and issues that got stirred up while Venus was retrograde. These aspects also have to do with financial issues and economic development. If Venus retrograde stimulated growing public discontent about the gap between wealth and poverty, for example, this aspect may help inspire some ameliorating action. (Wouldn’t that be nice!) Then, when Jupiter makes its exact angle to Uranus at the end of the month, expect changes and surprises.
These planetary combinations also have to do with the environment, with climate change, and with our use and abuse of the earth’s resources. It appears that volcanoes gathered strength while Venus was in the underworld, and we’re seeing eruptions in Ecuador and Indonesia…… We may see more natural gas explosions as well as more political unrest about the Keystone pipeline. Venus in Capricorn keeps our focus on Mother Earth.
Important February dates
(Yesterday was Candlemas or Brigid’s Day, an important day in the pagan calendar for celebrating fire, healing, poetry and inspiration!)
February 6 4:43 pm Mercury goes retrograde at 3’18” Pisces
February 18 1:00 pm Sun enters Pisces
February 28 11:01 am Mercury goes direct at 18’10” Aquarius
January 1, 2014
Happy New Year! And Happy New Moon in Capricorn!
Yes, indeed! This is a nice gift from the universe — a new moon on New Year’s Day. Talk about new beginnings ! And a new moon in Capricorn is a wonderful one for generating new plans and goals, so let those resolutions rip…. Speaking of ripping, it just so happens that this new moon has some major rip-roaring planetary aspects with it, namely Mars in Libra making a dramatic T-square to the Uranus-Pluto business. All of this falls exactly on the degree of the new moon. So if you’re feeling a tad edgy, that’s why. Actually, the edginess has been especially over the past week with Mars opposing Uranus, creating some definitely jagged-y energy, a number of major explosions, and a lot of earthquake activity.
And look out for some intense weather over the next couple of days.
This astrologer can’t compete with the Weather Channel but allow me to remind all of you travelers out there to please check your lunar calendars — weather is always worse around new and full moons. There is a lot of water moving around the atmosphere on these lunations, after all , so plan accordingly!
And I hope you are all enjoying Venus retrograde!
As I wrote last month, Venus went retrograde on December 21st and turns around on January 31st. This is always a fruitful transit for reflecting on our values and where we are in or out of sync with them. This particular pass is in Capricorn, and Venus will cross paths with the Sun around the 12th — creating some rich fodder in relationships — and end its retrograde stint opposing Jupiter and sitting together with Pluto. This will be a really interesting time for positive developments on many levels — relationally, financially and politically.
Keep in mind that Venus retrograde has a powerful effect on world governments.
Although on a personal level Venus retrograde is usually a time for calm reflection and not dramatic action, the opposite is true politically. Governments can rise and fall, and diplomacy can break through or break down. The world is definitely jumping right now with major tumult in Turkey and the Ukraine. (And can you believe that Kim Jong Un had his uncle executed?) All of these events are very typical for Venus retrograde. I would keep our eyes on those countries as well as Iran, South Sudan, Lebanon, and Israel and Palestine. And here in the US, more pressure is building on the Supreme Court over gay marriage — a very Venus retrograde topic. Interesting times!
FYI: The last time Venus retrograded in Capricorn was January 2006. The major unresolved issue from that period was Iran’s nuclear capability. This is likely to be the diplomatic breakthrough of this pass of Venus retrograde….
January’s Important Astrological Dates:
all times EST
January 1 615 am New Moon at 10’57 Capricorn
January 15 1153 pm Full Moon at 25’58 Cancer
January 19 1052 pm Sun enters Aquarius
January 30 440 pm New Moon at 10’55 Aquarius (Yes, two new moons this month!)
January 31 352 pm Venus turns direct at 13’34 Capricorn
December 1, 2013
And let the season of retrogrades begin!
December is a wild month, bringing a nice Venus-Jupiter effect in tomorrow’s New Moon in Sagittarius. As if this weren’t enough, Chiron is all over the New Moon, raising issues of how we all express our Sagittarian wisdom. But the really interesting dynamics this month involve Venus, which goes retrograde on the 21st, the same day as the Winter Solstice. Venus retrogrades only once every 20 months or so, and boy oh boy, we are not used to it when it does.
This pass of Venus retrograde begins at 28’57” of Capricorn, and it turns around again on January 31st at 13’34” Capricorn. On a personal level Venus retrograde periods are interesting and not as potentially vexing as Mercury or Mars retrograde because Venus doesn’t mess with our precious computers or best laid plans…. Venus, the ruling planet of both Taurus and Libra, nevertheless has a big job– her domain is that of values and relationships. So Venus retrograde is more of a reflective period in which we become aware of what our values really are, and where our lives and relationships may be out of sync with our innermost values. It is not necessarily a time of action but of watching and listening and discerning and …..of thinking.
This Venus retrograde will of course be especially meaningful for Capricorns, and also for anyone with any planets that fall between 13 degrees and 28 degrees of Capricorn or of any other Cardinal sign such as Aries, Cancer or Libra. Venus retrograde will trigger not exactly a crisis of values with those planets but certainly a major reorientation. And keep in mind that at the end of January, Venus will essentially be sitting in the same spot as Pluto in Capricorn — those two planets together have everything to do with relationships and commitment. Get ready to go deeply!
Politically, Venus retrograde is a whole other ball of wax….
On the world stage, Venus retrograde plays out a bit differently. Keep in mind that to the ancient Mayans, Venus went underground for its retrograde periods and prepared for battle…. During Venus retrograde there can be major diplomatic breakthroughs as well as massive political calamities. The fortunes of world leaders can change and governments can fall. It is a volatile period, politically speaking.
Because this pass of Venus retrograde is in Capricorn it is likely that the world economy will have some reckoning to do and that the earth itself will have more ecological shakeups.
It is also useful to look at past Venus retrograde periods to gain insight into Venus’ sphere of action. The last time Venus was retrograde was in May-June 2012. Global stock markets were at an all-time low. The Dow is now at an all-time high, although the gap between wealth and poverty continues to grow distressingly wide. Look to Venus retrograde in Capricorn to inspire more of us to hold corporations accountable….
Eight years ago Venus was retrograde in Capricorn. During that period the US, Britain, and France determined that negotiations with Iran over its nuclear capacity were at a “dead end.” Well well. And this fall along came a diplomatic breakthrough. Iran’s Sun is at 11 degrees Aries, so this is a time of immense transformation for that country because of the Uranus-Pluto influence. The beginnings of an agreement between the US and Iran should become solidified during this stretch of Venus retrograde.
So enjoy the month! Venus rings in the retrograde season, followed by Mercury retrograde in February, and…. ooh, for a really good time, Mars retrograde in March.
More on that in future columns!
December’s important planetary dates:
December 17 4:28 am Ful Moon at 25’36” Gemini
December 21 12:11 pm Winter Solstice! Here comes the Sun! The Sun enters Capricorn….
December 21 4:53 pm Venus goes retrograde
November 5, 2013
Oh what a month!
November brings us some very interesting transits in addition to Sunday’s powerful new moon and eclipse. First, you gotta love Mercury retrograde! Isn’t it ridiculous? (It took your astrologer into a travel vortex that took her over 100 miles out of the way on an already really really long only- a – Sagittarius- would-do-this road trip….) And yet, I love Mercury retrograde because of what it reveals — both sought after and utterly unwelcome but important information. And dreams are rich and layered and revelatory.
Mercury goes direct on November 10th at 4:12 pm EST.
Dont forget that the day it changes can be really crazy. I expect this one will be since there is a Sun Saturn conjunction that day as well.
And speaking of Saturn….
Saturn spends a great deal of the month close to the earth axis at 15 degrees Scorpio. That will put some pressure on an already stressed out planet, both politically and environmentally. And for those of us born in 1954-55 and in 1983-84, we all know we are smack in the midst of our Saturn returns, right? (The Saturn return is a major 28-30 cycle that we all go through when Saturn returns to the same spot it occupied in our natal charts….If you are 28,29,30 or 58, 59, 60, and your life is in upheaval, this is why!) We are in the height of it!! Build, deconstruct, reconstruct. Then do it again. And again. Fun.
And in other planetary news, the Uranus Pluto square is very tight this month… but Venus’ involvement may bring some diplomatic breakthroughs mid November.
November’s important planetary dates:
November 10 412 pm Mercury goes direct
November 12th Saturn crosses the Earth Axis
November 17 10 16 am Full Moon at 25 26 Taurus
November 21 10 48 pm Sun enters Sagittarius
November 2, 2013
New Moon in Scorpio and Major Solar Eclipse tomorrow
It’s actually a hybrid eclipse– starting as an annular (forming a ring) and then later as a total eclipse. Read all about the astronomy of it at EarthSky.
The eclipse will intensify the meaning of the new moon which is all about intuitively perceiving old patterns that need to be transformed. Get ready for change and for letting go in a big way. The new moon occurs at 750 am Sunday morning EST.
This is a very important new moon if you are a Scorpio or Taurus! Stay flexible!
Speaking of which it’s Mercury retrograde and your Sagittarian astrologer is on the road. Your November forecast is a few days late. I’ll let you know when it’s up and you can also check back here on Monday….. Thanks for your patience!
October 2, 2013
October brings more intense Uranus-Pluto mishegas, an eclipse, and a beautiful start to the season of retrogrades….
Yes, this first week of October is quite trying. It makes a girl’s head hurt. It is really hard to make sense of the Uranus- Pluto square and the intense polarization it brings. But just when you think everything is going to hell in a handbasket those two planets generate an insane possibility that that we didn’t see coming. Case in point: Syria. Just one month ago your astrologer was quite convinced the US would go ahead with bombing Syria. In an astounding turn of events, Putin suggests a way out of the morass. Putin? Really? Then two weeks later there is a UN resolution and Syria has to shut down its chemical weapons arsenal. Here I thought Jupiter’s presence in the planetary pile-up would exaggerate the awful possibility of war, and perhaps it was Jupiter that opened a road to a solution… And here’s another surprise on the global stage: Iran. I guess the terrifying beauty of the Uranus-Pluto square is its unpredictability.
I was just sitting with a good friend sharing Akron’s best hummous and we were trying to describe these times we’re in. So very crazy and yet so great, with contradictions piling in so fast and so closely together that it feels like if you slip in either direction something terrible could happen. Or something great. Or both at once.
So the new Pope — gotta love that guy– completely turns reactionary Catholic theology on its head by saying that perhaps the Church has gone overboard in its obsession with attacking abortion and gay people. Meanwhile the old Pope is still kind of a Pope, hanging out in a Papal residence. What?!
Then the Tea Party Republicans shut down the US government. The Democrats and the President actually hold their ground against this stupidity. All of this drama occurs against the backdrop of opening day of the Affordable Care Act and its websites being swamped by people wanting to sign up. This is the law the Tea Party says no one wants…. Hmmm.
My best advice about this period is to stay as calm as we can because the craziness isnt stopping anytime soon. Stay flexible, stay calm, and expect the best and the worst every moment. Uranus always presents things in doubles, and there is always polarization with this planet. That is its nature. Polarization and chaos. Pluto brings repression as well as transformation and change.
I expect that the Libra new moon on the 5th– which creates a T square out of the Uranus-Pluto square — will point towards resolution of the US Congress’ stalemate.
In other planetary news, Saturn is moving at a pretty good clip right now in Scorpio, heading right for the earth axis in November. In fact, Mercury and Venus are in Scorpio too. Yay! It’s fall!
Mercury in Scorpio goes retrograde on October 21st until it turns around on November 10th. And so begins a fascinating season of retrogrades! Venus will go retrograde at the end of December, followed by another round of Mercury retro in February. Then the big one: Mars retrogrades March 1st for two months. But I’m getting ahead of myself!
Mercury retrograde in Scorpio will be long on intuition and subtext… Remember to go with the flow and let your intuition emerge. Not a time for forcing decisions!
October’s Planetary Events
October 5th 8:34 pm New Moon at 11’56 Libra
October 7th 1:54 pm Venus enters Sag
October 15th 7:05 am Mars enters Virgo
October 18th 7:38 pm Full Moon and Lunar Eclipse 25’45 Aries (Oh, the stock market could have a wee problem!)
October 21st 6:29 am Mercury goes retrograde at 18’24 Scorpio!
October 23rd 2:10 am Sun enters Scorpio
September 1, 2013
Jupiter in Cancer catches up to the Sun of the US at the beginning of September and not surprisingly, there is talk of war
As I wrote last month in these pages, Jupiter has inserted itself into the Uranus-Pluto square and its presence exaggerates this already very volatile combination. Right now, Jupiter is at 13 degrees Cancer, exactly where the US’s Sun is located in its birth chart. The US expresses its Cancer Sun frequently through a kind of bellicose protective impulse: we’re going to make the world safe for —— (fill in the blank.) Now the US is preparing to fly into the breach in Syria in response to the horrific actions of the Assad regime. Using chemical weapons is terrible, and a very Uranus- Pluto thing to do. Syria has been convulsed in war for two years and throughout there has been a great deal of ineffective global handwringing. Apparently it took Jupiter to goad the US into action, and this type of action is very typical for the US. It’s Dad to the rescue.
As Charles Blow so eloquently wrote in today’s New York Times: When innocent lives are taken in the most reprehensible of ways, to whom do their souls cry? Whence comes their justice? Is America’s moral leadership in the world carved out by the tip of its sword?
As September unfolds, Jupiter moves away from Uranus and Pluto, but Uranus and Pluto continue to inch closer and closer to each other. Oy!
Meanwhile starting on September 5th — the day of the Virgo new moon — Mars in Leo makes a square to Saturn in Scorpio for about 10 days. This looks kind of war-like. The US Congress will be in high dudgeon. My guess is that the US will strike Syria around September 14-15, when the Sun catches up to Syria’s Sun in Virgo and Pres. Obama’s Mars. Like I said — Oy.
Jupiter is also all about cycles of life and death, the turning of the wheel of fortune. We’ve seen some luminaries cross into death recently. Light for the spirits of Irish poet Seamus Heaney, jazz great Marian McPartland, and actor Julie Harris.
Jupiter’s angle to Uranus and Pluto amplifies the life-and-death quality to the times we are in. I don’t mean to be grim or overly dramatic — it’s just how it is.
September’s important planetary events (all times are Ohio time– EDT)
Sept 5 7:36 am New moon at 13’04 Virgo Happy Rosh Hashanah
Sept 19 7:13 am Full Moon at 26’41 Pisces Harvest Moon
Sept 22 4:44 pm Sun enters Libra Fall Equinox!
Enjoy the lack of retrograde personal planets this month…..since the fall and winter bring a pile of them! Fun!
August 3, 2013
Jupiter in Cancer inserts itself into the Uranus-Pluto dynamics for all of August
and won’t this be fun!
Yes, indeed! Jupiter spends all of August in opposition to Pluto in Capricorn and squaring Uranus in Aries, making a big right triangle. In astrological parlance we call this a “T-square,” a potent triangle of dynamic energy. Jupiter’s addition to this grand clash of the titans going on in the sky will have a few effects. For one thing, it will intensify the overall feeling of combustibility and unpredictable change. I know — you’re thinking Enough of this already! As of today Jupiter is at 8-degrees plus of Cancer, in a tight opposition to Pluto’s position at 9’32” Capricorn. By the end of the month, Jupiter will be at 13’49 Cancer in a close square to Uranus at 11’47” Aries. So we’re seeing Jupiter emphasize the Pluto end of things — just yesterday the US announced the potential threat of Al Qaeda attacks on US facilities somewhere in the Middle East. Oh, and here’s the other thing about this Jupiter in Cancer: it falls very close to the degree of the US’ Sun, so the US will be very central in the Uranus-Pluto events of August. By the end of the month Jupiter’s aspect will amplify Uranus. Sad to say I think this month will be incredibly complicated and explosive on the world stage.
I said last month that some of the aspects connected to Uranus were especially explosive…..That continues to be the case. Everyone should continue to be careful about fire, lightning, and gas this month. (Jeez I very uncharacteristically left a pan on the stove twice in the last month….!) And also accidents– Trains, planes, cars, bicycles. Be mindful. I’m just sayin’.
But allow me to touch on the interesting and potentially positive parts of Jupiter’s addition to the planetary pigpile (ooh love that alliteration)… Jupiter is about expansion and growth, and so we may see some positive developments, even breakthroughs. Jupiter also brings closures and openings. Cycles are ending and beginning. Personally, I’m hoping it’s the end of the Republicans-being-utterly-intransigent cycle. Or could it be the end of the Vatican being completely stupid? Pope Francis’ recent “Who am I to judge” remark is a good example of a Uranus-Pluto shocker.
So the thing about an astrological T square is that it is forceful and focused, and its resolution shows up in the missing fourth corner — in this case in the sign Libra. Libra is about relationship. about dealing with the “Other.” I take that to mean some diplomatic breakthroughs are possible with Jupiter in this mix. Perhaps there will actually be some collaboration to avert a budget stalemate.
It is a great month for relationships, speaking of Libra. August is about interdependence.
Which leads me to another interesting planetary dynamic this month. The Sun is squaring the North Lunar Node right now, and will be on the powerful August 6th New Moon. One of the meanings of this contact is ‘witnessing.’ I think many of us who pay attention to the body politic are aware that we are witnessing huge changes in our society and in the world. The word has many meanings and they all have to do with knowing one is experiencing something. “Wit” comes from the old English “to know”– and thus a witch is one who knows. (I love that, being a witchy kind of girl. ) So as we collectively witness the changes in our society we become participants in its transformation. Bring it on: We are interdependent!
August’s Planetary Events—all times Ohio time (EDT)
August 6 5:51 pm New Moon at 14’35” Leo
August 16 11:38 am Venus enters Libra
August 20 9:45 pm Full Moon at 28’11” Aquarius
August 22 7:03 pm Sun enters Virgo
August 23 6:38 pm Mercury enters Virgo
Look for the Perseid Meteor Shower starting now and peaking on August 11!
July 20, 2013
1960′ s redux: Uranus-Pluto and the response to the Trayvon Martin ruling
and throw in the end of Mercury retrograde and the upcoming full moon
This has been a big week, astrologically speaking. Having just returned from my third public event in seven days concerning the murder of Trayvon Martin, I can’t help but think that Uranus and Pluto have brought us to a pivotal moment in this country. The jury’s verdict last week — together with the crowing from Florida state officials about “democracy in action” — made it patently clear that the structures of this society treat Black lives as less valuable than white ones. There it is. Pluto in Capricorn delivered us the status quo, that’s for sure, via an all-woman jury that was 90% white and had not a single African American. (Of course, the context for that is that utterly biased drug laws disproportionately punish people of color and especially African-Americans… effectively removing them from any jury pool. Check out The New Jim Crow by the brilliant Michelle Alexander.)
Then as the week unfolded we have witnessed the palpable outrage emanating from many corners of the African American community and from people of color. (Thank god this was echoed by some white antiracists as well.) This groundswell of horror, anger and grief from African Americans has been very particular — from the blogosphere to the demonstrations and vigils to the President himself– in naming how Zimmerman’s action and this jury’s ruling and countless other murders of youth of color strip their children of their humanity. These are our children, and our children’s lives are not expendable!
That is the Uranus side of the equation, highlighting the humanity at stake here, the human rights. For that is what racism does, after all– it treats a certain group of people as less than human. Uranus shakes us up, takes us out of our complacency.
So in this terrible event, a brutal act of violence, we see the collective standing up for justice and humanity. It feels a bit like the 60’s, the last time there was a Uranus Pluto aspect of this magnitude , when there was a similar action of change, repression, and transformation. It’s possible that this event is a watershed event, the way Bull Connor’s use of fire hoses on children marching in Civil Rights marches in Birmingham became a searing image of racism’s inhumanity in the 1960’s.
Mercury retrograde in Cancer helped bring pain and grief to the surface, revealing an emotional layer that could not be ignored.
Cancer can have extraordinary clarity, like the the beautiful clear Caribbean ocean, and this week, the clarity was single-pointed: These are our children, and our children’s lives are not expendable!
With Mercury going direct today (yes, at 2:22 this afternoon), we will see how we use these Cancerian lessons of the past few weeks.
At a rally I attended today people were saying: “Let Trayvon’s death not be in vain. It’s time to hold our society accountable. ” Let’s do what Uranus and Pluto are asking us to do and transform this society!
The upcoming “supermoon” on Monday is also shedding a lot of light on this situation
Monday is a powerful full moon, called a “supermoon” because it is at its perigee and very close to the Earth. Full moons are always powerful and they always illuminate our shadow.Things culminate and come to fruition under a full moon. (Well, the shadow side of the US sure has become illuminated….) So this is a big moon, and we can all expect a lot of water to move around — both literally and figuratively! Feelings are running high.
July 1, 2013
Well, Uranus and Pluto sure have the world rockin’ and rollin’…
The square of Uranus and Pluto is the most dominant astrological influence of 2013 and so I just have to keep talking about it. Pick any world event of the last few weeks and the meaning of this aspect becomes very clear. Principles of freedom and liberation wrestle with forces of repression in the most extraordinary way, and from one moment to the next we really don’t know which side is winning. Here is my Uranus-Pluto hit parade:
1. Egypt — massive popular uprising threatens to bring down the Morsi government
2. Brazil — the people rise up to challenge political corruption and the alarming gap between wealth and poverty
3. Oh jeez– the US Supreme Court! Don’t get me started! In one 48 hour period they undermined affirmative action and voting rights while affirming gay marriage. So as organizer Scot Nakagawa wrote –and I’m paraphrasing–that if you’re gay and a person of color your right to marry is expanding while your right to vote is contracting…. read his brilliant blogpost: Marriage Equality is a step in a much longer journey.
4. Revelations about NSA surveillance… Wow, I guess we all needed Uranus to remind us that George Bush brought us the Patriot Act in 2o01! And Edward Snowden will probably spend all of Mercury retrograde holed up in the Moscow airport, unable to go anywhere til July 20…
Of course, this influence is also showing up in our individual lives in a potentially disruptive and life-changing way. Depending on how this aspect falls in one’s individual chart, all hell may be breaking loose. This is a period of immense stress; whether the changes we undergo have a good outcome or not, there is a sense that we are being buffeted about by forces much bigger than us. We are.
The first week of July is particularly tumultuous because the Uranus-Pluto angle aspects the Sun in Cancer.
This month, Uranus’ action has a lot to do with fire and lightning
The Uranus-Pluto square also has a lot to with climate change and dramatic events on our wee blue planet. This month Uranus approaches a square to the Sun of the United States, and it also makes an angle to one of the planets in the Uranian pantheon. The key word this month is fire, especially for the US. At the time of this writing there is a very serious fire raging in Arizona. There have been dangerous lightning strikes this past week. All of us should be careful about storms, lightning, gas explosions, and the danger of fire in general. This is an incendiary month for the US, July 4th fireworks notwithstanding!
And don’t forget, Mercury is retrograde til July 20th
That must be why I’m posting my column on time! I don’t know about you but I’m liking this Mercury retrograde in Cancer. It’s good for intuition and dreams have been very rich and satisfying. And it is pushing me to whole new levels of going with the flow…
July’s planetary events (all times Ohio time/EDT)
July 8 3:14 pm New Moon at 16’18” Cancer
July 13 9:23 am Mars enters Cancer
July 20 Mercury goes direct at 2:22 pm at 13’23” Cancer
July 22 8:42 am Venus enters Virgo; 11:57 am Sun enters Leo; 2:15 pm Full Moon at 0’06” Aquarius
June 5, 2013
The last few weeks of the Uranus-Pluto square have brought their share of scary events…. Let’s see: the huge tornadoes in Oklahoma, some big earthquakes in eastern Russia, volcanic eruptions in Mexico, Kamchatka, and Alaska. Then there is the political scene: worsening conflict in Syria, government suppression of protests in Turkey, the US Supreme Court decision on DNA. I could go on. These two planets are living up to their reputation for upheaval and shattering. Oh, and the terrible collapse of the garment factories in Bangla Desh. In that horrifying event we can also see the transformative aspects of this planetary combination since the disaster pushed some clothing manufacturers to sign onto a “clean clothes” pact. Once again, this is actually the result of community organizing. The Clean Clothes Campaign has been a long-time organizing effort.
This Uranus -Pluto effect will be with us all summer to some extent. Pluto is now retrograde and by the end of June, Uranus pulls ahead of the square by about 2 degrees. But that’s still a very close square. Mid-July, Uranus starts retrograding, and by October, the square of the two planets will be exact again. Oy.
The Summer Solstice is on June 21 this year
It follows a week of a Sun-Jupiter conjunction in Gemini. That should make for an enjoyable week, especially since Venus and Mercury will be very close to each other in Cancer. The summer solstice is when the Sun enters Cancer, the quintessential water sign of establishing protection and safety. Home, roots, security. (It’s the sun sign of the US in fact…) We astrologers think of the equinox and solstice points as the “earth axis,” and so any planetary transit of 0-degrees Aries, Cancer, Libra, and Capricorn is potentially a big deal for the world itself. On the solstice, Venus and Mercury make a nice angle to the Sun at 0-degrees Cancer, so I’m hoping for some detentes, some diplomatic breakthroughs, somewhere, somehow….
Mercury goes retrograde on June 26th
Three weeks of Mercury retrograde in Cancer until it turns around on July 20th. I’m expecting a run of misunderstandings and easily bruised egos…But otherwise this should be a dreamy and delicious stretch.
June Planetary Events (all times EDT)
June 8 11:56 am New Moon at 18’01 Gemini
June 21 1:04 am Sun enters Cancer– Summer Solstice!
June 23 7:32 am Full Moon at 2’10 Capricorn
June 26 9:08 am Mercury goes retrograde at 23″05 Cancer
May 2, 2013
The Uranus-Pluto square that I’ve been yammering about becomes exact this month… so expect more rockin’ and rollin’.
As a matter of fact it is exact on May 2oth at 6:21 pm EDT. But let’s be clear: these are slow far away planets that do not move very fast so in my book the square is in effect all month. As I‘ve been saying, this is a very tumultuous time for the planet and all of us who live on it. The tension between Uranus and Pluto places the focus on resisting state power and corporate control.
Just this week the fabulous people at Stand Up for Ohio organized a bus tour of major cities in Ohio for rallying, political education, and organizing. Whether the issues are the school-to-prison pipeline or natural gas pipelines, they’re clear about who is making money and who suffers… After the Akron rally on Sunday we marched to the home of developer David Brennan whose company White Hat Management (can you believe that name?!) runs charter schools in Ohio with abysmal performance records and which divert millions of dollars away from public education. “Hey hey ho ho, White Hat Management has got to go!” Uranus and Pluto in action!
May also brings us two eclipses– the new moon on the 9th is a solar eclipse, and the full moon on the 25th is of course a lunar one. Now don’t get all freakish over the eclipses- they happen all the time. What’s interesting about the New Moon in Taurus on the 9th — besides that it is a great time for planting — is that the Sun and Moon make nice angles to the North Lunar Node and to Mercury. So it will be a great lunation for connections, relating and intimacy.
The Full Moon in Sag on the 25th has the Sun and Moon squaring Neptune. You know what that means, right? Hole up with all 5 seasons of The Wire or something….Stay off the streets and get in front of a screen– that’s my advice. But take that with a grain of salt since I’ve had Neptune squaring my Sun for the last couple of years which gives me a great appreciation for screens big or little….
But then the month ends with a spectacular conjunction of Mercury, Venus, and Jupiter in Gemini. Really pretty and really enjoyable!
Planetary Events in May
All times are EDT
May 9 at 8:38 pm New Moon and Solar Eclipse at 19’31” Taurus
May 9 at 11:03 am Venus enters Gemini
May 15 at 4:41 pm Mercury enters Gemini
May 20 at 5:10 pm Sun enters Gemini
May 20 at 6:21 pm Uranus- Pluto square is exact
May 25 at 0:25 am Full Moon and Lunar Eclipse at 4’08” Sagittarius
April 21, 2013
Bombings, explosions, earthquakes. Some of you have asked me after the events of last week– “what the heck is going on?!”
It’s true, last week was a rough week. My heartfelt good wishes go to all those in my former hometown of Boston… Last week’s events — from the gun control debacle in Congress to the Boston Marathon bombing and its denouement — were dramatic and frightening on many levels. (And it was an extraordinarily violent week here where I live in the usual ways that are a function of systemic racism. In other words, many African Americans died entirely needlessly.)
My short answer about our current astrological situation is that yes, it is dicey, because of the relationship between Uranus and Pluto that I have mentioned many times during the last several months. The context in which we are operating right now is one of tumult, revolution, suppression, intensity, dramatic change, explosiveness, and potential violence.
The action of these two planets is shattering and transformative. Can it be positive? Yes, of course. Can it be destructive? Yes, of course. In order to deal with it, we have to stay very flexible and aware and realize that these forces are bigger than our individual egos. These forces manifest in the sweep of history and social
movements, and yet they affect us on a very individual and personal level. Uranus and Pluto come into 7 very exact squares (90-degree angles) between 2012 and 2015, and we are quickly approaching an exact square in June. But right now the angle between these two planets is pretty damn close, so we’re feeling it.
Keep in mind that this same angle was in effect during the 1960’s — another very violent period of upheaval and social/political transformation. Remember the Civil Rights Movement? Remember the Vietnam War? The political assassinations? Remember the tremendous social tension many of us lived through? And remember how profoundly everything changed?!
This time, with Uranus in Aries and Pluto in Capricorn, individual self expression is pitted against the State in some frightening ways — such as the misperception that owning automatic weapons is a right conferred by the US Constitution. There is the tension between the supposed right to use fossil fuels (when did that become a right?) and the integrity of the earth. The debates around gun control, fracking, the Keystone XL pipeline, the use of drones to kill enemies of the US — all of these issues reflect the Uranus-Pluto square.
Last week’s events were partiuclarly violent perhaps because of the Sun-Mars conjunction in Aries. Beware of men with guns or explosives, that’s all I can say.
Read on for how to manage our sanity during this challenging Uranus-Pluto square.
Happy Earth Day!
It’s Earth Day– and the Sun, Venus, and Mars are all in Taurus. Yay! This is a time to celebrate and honor the Earth and all those who work tirelessly to protect it. There is great and inspiring community organizing that is occurring from coast to coast that has to do with environmental justice, urban gardens, and taking back our water and land from the oil companies.
Speaking of which, one of the ways that I stay calm during this Uranus-Pluto square is to not engage in despair but to engage in social change. I know I may sound like a broken record on this but I can’t help my 4 planets in Scorpio. Transformation is in our hands and we can’t ever stop organizing. The planets are in our favor on this one!
The other way to deal with the tumult of this period is to know history. Without understanding history it is difficult to understand the nature of change. And — it is important to know that we are not alone: we are part of a collective whether we perceive it or not.
April 4, 2013
This is a tumultuous week on the world stage because the Sun in Aries catches up to the Uranus-Pluto square…
Oy veh! Indeed, there seems to be an epidemic of belligerence. Keep in mind that this month, Uranus in Aries is steaming ahead toward the exact square with Pluto which occurs in June. Even if it isnt exact this month, it gets pretty damn close. The world is feeling tense, and so are we. This explosive combination — occurring seven times between 2012 and 2015– brings incredible upheaval and social change. And guess what, it’s bringing dramatic climate change as well. Like I’m fond of saying, “Fasten your seat belt.”
And this series of planetary events is also an opportunity for a tremendous shift in consciousness. These two planets may be ruthlessly intense, but during their transits we are forced to evolve. Revolution and renewal may be necessary but they are messy and unpredictable. As structures are forced to come tumbling down, they try to resist and hang on… Yes, we’re seeing a great deal of that pattern around the globe and in the US.
But the Sun and Mars march together throughout all of April– making an exact conjunction in Aries on the 17th. And? you wonder… This makes for a highly productive and busy month for all of us.
What is up with North Korea?
This astrologer’s take on North Korea’s latest blustering is that it is in fact bluster. I hate to say it but the really dangerous period is in a year or 2, when Uranus and Pluto transit Kim Jong-un’s Sun in Capricorn. However, Saturn is passing over a sensitive point in his chart right now….so talk about needing to exercise some power and fantasies of nuclear domination.
All of this should blow over by the new moon in Aries on April 10th which has some quite pretty aspects of cooperation and collaboration.
It’s spring (ahem, supposedly!) and the Sun enters Taurus on the 19th. Venus enters on April 15th and Mars soon thereafter on the 20th. All of the delicious Taurean planets encounter Saturn which is retrograding in Scorpio right now. That’s a sobering influence, facilitating commitment and focus and hard work.
There is a full moon in Scorpio on April 25th followed by a big fat Mars-Saturn opposition. And it’s an eclipse too. Excellent for digging a new bed in the garden!
April’s important planetary dates:
All times are EDT.
April 10th at 5:35 am: New Moon at 20’41” Aries. Wait til the moon enters Taurus to plant! (That would be 11:22 pm that night…)
April 19th at 6:03 pm: Sun enters Taurus
April 25th at 3:57 pm: Full Moon and Lunar Eclipse at 5’46” Scorpio. Ah, illuminating all the things we’ve swept under the rug!
March 6, 2013
This is one Mercury retrograde to enjoy since the second half of March brings some intensity
Yes, indeed! What a watery month this is, at least the first half. Sun, Mercury, Venus and Mars are all in Pisces, and of course, Neptune too. And lest I forget to mention it, Saturn is in Scorpio. Remember that in astrology, water is the realm of feeling, and the Pisces kind of water is particularly large and oceanic. Pisces is about yearning for connection and oneness, andsowith Mercuryretrograde in Pisces we are particularly able to perceive oneness with all things. So stay open and pay attention to dreams and insights and random thoughts and ideas. With Venus in Pisces conjunct Chiron and squaring Jupiter we should all allow ourselves to be in the realm of mushiness and receptivity for the first couple of weeks of March — to be open, yielding, equanimous (love that word!) and even forgiving. (Speaking of which, dear readers — thank you for your patience with me. This itinerant Sagittarius was on the road and thus the delay in writing my column…) Of course all this Piscean energy makes us all very spacey — I suppose I should just speak for myself!
So enjoy this stretch of Mercury retrograde, especially around the new moon on the 11th, since Mercury retrograde squares Jupiter for a few days. That’s good for communication and connections. Then Mercury turns direct on the 17th while conjunct Neptune– remember that the day Mercury turns around is always chunky, and in aspect to Neptune it will be a mess.
And speaking of a sense of oneness, here is a perfect expression of Piscean unity by Neil DeGrasse Tyson, my favorite astronomer: “We are part of this universe; we are in this universe, but perhaps more important than both of those facts is that the universe is in us.” Have you ever heard such a perfectly quintessential Piscean statement? Check out this extraordinary video courtesy of EarthSky: Neil DeGrasse Tyson speaks about the universe.
Then things get exciting when the Sun enters Aries on the 20th
Yes, the Sun enters Aries on the 20th, marking the Spring Equinox and the Sun’s crossing of the Earth Axis. On that day, Mars in Aries catches up to Uranus and then over the next few days, squares Pluto just in time for the full moon on the 27th. In addition, the full moon itself lands on Uranus. I’m expecting some global tumult that week– could be political and/or environmental. Keep in mind that Mars in Aries will focus the potentially explosive energy of Uranus and Pluto, and that might mean some significant events in connection with the uprising in Syria. In fact, the new moon on the 11th falls exactly opposite Syria’s
Sun, so that country and the ongoing struggle there could be focal for most of March.
And Saturn and Pluto are likely to help Pres. Obama press forward with his agenda
The “mutual receptivity” of those two planets — Saturn in Pluto’s sign and Pluto in Saturn’s — make an angle to President Obama’s Sun in Leo. This gives him particular steadfastness as he pushes forward to secure the legacies of “Seneca, Selma, and Stonewall” that he laid out in his inaugural speech. Pluto and Saturn have a lot to do with his ability to sustain a grassroots base of support.
Important March Planetary Events
All times are EDT
March 11 at 351 pm: New Moon at 21’34 Pisces Delicious
March 17 403 pm: Mercury goes direct Oy vey!
March 20 at 702 am: Sun enters Aries/Spring Equinox Yay!
March 27 at 527 am: Full Moon at 6’52 Libra fasten your seat belt!
March 3, 2013
That pesky Mercury retrograde has your astrologer otherwise occupied.
March is an interesting month, as the Uranus-Pluto square tightens up again. Spring and a lot of tumult is in the air.
For those of you Pisceans with birthdays in the next few days, enjoy. Venus is transiting Neptune and hurrying towards a square with Jupiter. Nice. It’s all about fun and enjoyment and sweetness. Have a good time!
Here’s to Mercury retrograde!
Check back March 6 for your monthly feature and forecast!
Saturn and Pluto are in a “special” relationship this month…We’re likely to see some traction in seemingly intractable issues…
Amazing, isn’t it? Two planets that when put together can send shivers up the spines of even the most equanimous astrologers…and look here, I’m saying that this could be a good thing.
It’s true. Saturn is at 11 degrees Scorpio — the sign ruled by Pluto– and Pluto is at 11 degrees Capricorn, which is ruled by Saturn. This is called “mutual reception” in astrological parlance. It is as if they are really good friends and just decided to house-swap. Nice for them — and it just might be nice for us.
It suggests that the combined forces of these powerful planets could work together in the US and on the world stage to put some Saturnian structure, perseverance and form into addressing Pluto in Capricorn issues. What types of issues would those be? Guns and gun control are Pluto issues — the eruptions of violence that we are seeing are very characteristic of the Uranus-Pluto square. Immigration is also a Plutonic issue — in the US it has been characterized by a great deal of Plutonic repression and Saturn in Scorpio urges to survive. Saturn and Pluto both can manifest as institutions of government, and that is where we will see movement.
Pluto in Capricorn is also about sustainable development and the realities of climate change. Saturn in Scorpio in this special relationship to Pluto will bring the hydrofracking issue to a head. Let’s hope that Neptune doesnt confuse the decision-makers.
Speaking of Neptune–
Every personal planet transits Neptune this month as it enters Pisces — that would be Mars, Mercury, the Sun, and Venus. Oy! Are you wondering why you can’t get anything done this week? I’m blaming Mars and Neptune for my inability to get my column to you sooner. These transits will have major impact on our personal lives. Politically Neptune is all about the US’s love affair with gas and oil — both the substance itself and our delusions about its impact on us and our world.
Mercury goes retrograde on February 23
This occurs at 441 am EST at 19’52” Pisces and lasts til March 17. The day it turns retrograde it makes a big angle to Saturn — I’d expect some especially challenging Mercury-retrograde irritations in the arena of communication and technology. But remember, Mercury retrograde is a time to go with the flow and to not make big decisions. Just gather information and let your intuition do its thing.
February 10th New Moon at 21’43” Aquarius 2:20 am
Happy Chinese New Year! Year of the water snake.
February 23rd Mercury goes retrograde at 441 am at 19’52” Pisces
February 25th Full Moon at 7’26 Virgo 326 pm
All times are EST
Uranus and Pluto make their mark on much of 2013…..Enjoy January and February because spring and summer will bring some tumult!
Oh that pesky Uranus-Pluto square! Over the last year or more it has brought us Arab Spring, Occupy Wall Street, and other uprisings, as well as dramatic climate change. And it isn’t as if these events have abated even though the Uranus Pluto square has moved out of phase for a few months… But still — the 90-degree angle between these planets will be exact for a good part of the spring, summer, and even the fall. By the end of February, Pluto reaches 11 degrees Capricorn, which is an angle to the earth axis. The world will feel Pluto’s impact mostly in terms of climate change, this astrologer believes… although political unrest will still be the name of the game around the globe. Meanwhile Uranus moves forward in Aries and by April is in a close square to Pluto. Oy gevalt — this goes on for months! Whatever this combination brings, we know it will be dramatic — politically, environmentally, and economically.
It is also an opportunity for profound social change. Whenever these two planets have come into contact (1930’s, 1960’s) there have been dramatic rifts in the social fabric that give rise to new definitions of freedom and justice. So please– no handwringing! Think about all your favorite community organizers and lift their names up, for now is when we need visionaries. As Mother Jones said: “Pray for the dead and fight like hell for the living!”
Speaking of visionaries, there are some other interesting astrological aspects that I want to make note of right now … Jupiter in Gemini is parked in a tight square to Chiron for all of January and February. This fascinating aspect has to do with having to stretch our sense of giving back. Both planets have a quality of beneficence and magnanimity. Chiron is also a hell-raiser, Centaur that he is. During this period when Jupiter and Chiron are working together, people are grappling with how to make a difference on this blue planet of ours. People are also grappling with issues of healing. We think of Chiron as the “wounded healer” of the astrological pantheon, so when Chiron comes around we have to pay attention to some core wounding and take steps to heal it. With Jupiter in the picture we may be more inclined to do so — we feel that if we stumble Jupiter is there to catch us. I don’t know about you but I like the idea of falling into Jupiter’s arms.
In addition, Saturn — my favorite — is in Scorpio. (Attention all of you born in ’54 and ’55– it’s your Saturn return!) Now through April and then again October through December, Saturn will be hanging out with one of those weird outer planets I use in the Uranian system (Poseidon) as well as making an aspect to Neptune. The Saturn-Poseidon effect puts Saturn’s emphasis on learning and study, especially things of a philosophical nature. The Neptune effect on Saturn means it’s time to set up a regular regimen for spiritual or creative practice. On the personal level, it’s time to get back to yoga, t’ai chi, aikido, or meditation. If you’re an artist, gotta get serious about your art. I mean it! Politically, this influence may focus some attention on education and frame the gun control debate in loftier, more principled terms, thankfully.
Otherwise 2013 doesn’t bring any weird retrogrades of personal planets until Venus goes retrograde towards the end of December. (That’s almost a year from now so we don’t have to think about it!) Mercury, as always, will have four periods of retrograde in 2013, the first coming up on February 23.
January’s Important Planetary Events:
January 8 11:11 pm Venus enters Capricorn
January 19 2:25 am Mercury enters Aquarius
January 19 4:52 pm Sun enters Aquarius
January 26 11:38 pm Full Moon at 7’24” Leo