October 2 2020
October: two full moons, Mercury retrograde, Mars retrograde, and lots of dramatic dynamics.
Sigh. This is the kind of month that makes me dislike being an astrologer… The pressure! How the hell am I supposed to interpret what is going on?! Let me just say that I am walking a fine line between Sagittarian optimism and Scorpionic doom on a daily basis. So I am going to try to thread the needle here between both of those states. Here goes.
I wrote in my last post that this fall was going to be rough, between Mars retrograde and the last blast of the Saturn-Pluto conjunction. Over the past couple of weeks we have been feeling increasing angst – the fires, hurricanes, and increasingly despotic and racist behavior from Trump and his cronies. Many of us are on edge – scared of white supremacist violence, scared of unparalleled interference with the elections, scared that Trump won’t leave office. It is all terrifying. This really is the final swipe of the Saturn -Pluto conjunction, which is all about repression and breakdown of systems, and also about revealing the best and the worst of human behavior.
The Mars retrograde effect surfaces a kind of helplessness. I had this image the other day: we are all in a river being pulled along by the current. We can all hear the waterfall ahead and can’t do a damn thing but keep heading for it. We don’t know if that waterfall brings liberation or disaster, or perhaps both. I’m banking on liberation.
So—October. Mercury turns retrograde on the 13th . Mercury is in Scorpio, and Scorpio is conducive to the non-linear intuition of Merc retrograde. There is a lot that is usually hidden in Scorpio, so the retrograde is going to reveal a lot of dirt. With Mars also retrograde, the two planets retrograde will bring more uncertainty, more unexpected events.
Then it gets very interesting – and trigger warning— somewhat scary. On the 14th the Sun in Libra opposes Mars retrograde, which is a pivotal point in the Mars cycle. There is typically a release of energy. Things that have been stuck or just under the surface since the start of Mars retrograde tend to come out. This time, I hate to say it, they will come out explosively – Jupiter and Uranus are in this aspect, as is a planet we use in the Uranian system called Zeus. Zeus has to do with fire and explosions. So not only will we see a release of energy but a massive release of fiery explosive energy. Hmm. People who live in the fire zone, pay attention! My other thought is …umm.. you know… white supremacists…Proud Boys… etc —I really hope I am wrong about this. But the other side of this turning point is that people speak truth to power, and quite simply reach a breaking point of No, we are not going to take this anymore.
So whatever happens, there will be massive resistance for the rest of the Mars retrograde. After all, Mars retrograde can bring revolution.
Other Mars retrograde dynamics in play in the body politic:
I mentioned last month that Trump is having a difficult run of Mars retrograde. It is moving through the 8th house of his birth chart, and in traditional astrology that is the house of life and death crises, and, quite amazingly, of taxes. It is about things coming due, legacy, what we inherit. Things are catching up with him.
Supreme Court Justice nominee Amy Coney Barrett’s hearings begin in the Senate on October 15. If we read these planetary angles as a “bombshell” of information rather than an armed insurrection, then it’s very possible that something comes out about her that causes her nomination to fail (I know, hope springs eternal!). Since she has Mars in Aries in her chart and Mars retrograde in the sky will be exactly on top of her Mars that week, perhaps she will decide to throw in the towel in some Mars retrograde realization that she doesn’t really want this job…. Perhaps she will decide it’s not for her, and she’d rather be a stay at home mom.
In addition, October 16 brings a Libra new moon with Saturn and Pluto influences. It is going to be a tough week in a tough month. Sorry, folks.
Yet— we cannot lose hope. There is so much happening that is so unexpected, and not every reversal is a bad thing. Mars retrograde, Mercury retrograde, Jupiter and Uranus all bring lots of change. So even while we are feeling put through the meat grinder of Saturn and Pluto, as Leonard Cohen wrote in his song Anthem:
Ring the bells (ring the bells) that still can ring
Forget your perfect offering
There is a crack in everything (there is a crack in everything)
That’s how the light gets in…
That is how the light gets in. Saturn and Pluto are showing us exactly how broken we are, and yes, it’s scary and awful—and yet necessary. We need those cracks!! Stay strong, stay calm, pray a lot, don’t mourn but organize, and vote vote vote.
October’s important dates and how to deal with them!
October 1 5:06 pm EDT Full moon @ 9’08 Aries This full moon is exposing arrogance and self-aggrandizing behavior. Mars retrograde is allowing us to be horrified by it. We are not numb!
October 13 9:06 pm EDT Mercury turns retrograde @ 11’40 Scorpio Work your intuition and pay attention to dreams. Expect revelations.
October 14 Sun opposes Mars retrograde @ 21’ Libra Put on your seatbelt and pray for peace with justice!
October 16 3:32 pm New moon @ 23’53 Libra You know what you have to do! Stay calm, make plans to support free and fair elections, vote early if you can, stand up for racial justice!
October 22 7:01 pm Sun enters Scorpio
October 31 10:50 am Full Moon @ 8’38 Taurus Happy Halloween! Make sure to give food to your ancestors. They are working overtime for us!
Stay healthy, safe, strong and sane!
Change is coming…more on that in my November column.
September 2 2020
Just when we thought things couldn’t be crazier…. We get Mars retrograde and Saturn-Pluto redux this month!
Oh yes, September is a fun one, the kind of month that I have been nervous to write about. How can a girl possibly make sense of these dynamics?!
So, first, Mars.
Mars turns retrograde on September 9th – and stays that way til November 15th, for god’s sake. (Yes, that means it will be retrograde for the US election…) This is a long transit that only occurs every 2 years or so, and therefore we are really not used to it. Mars has a large sphere of action – the primary one being action itself: movement forward, the will, plans, goals, work, and yes, there can be some aggressiveness thrown in. Mars is the planet that rules Aries, and it happens to be in Aries right now, and will spend its retrograde period in Aries. Mars in Aries really embodies all that Mars is about –fiery impulsive action, leadership, decisiveness, inspiration, directness, forthrightness.
When Mars is retrograde, all that direct forward action gets a bit wonky, goes sideways. Things that were moving full steam ahead take a detour or stop entirely. Energy gets pulled away from externals and towards our internal state, draining right out of what we were focused on. The key with Mars retrograde is to absolutely go with the flow of it, with where the energy is, as opposed to where it isn’t. No forcing things! As with any retrograde personal planet, self- reflection is required.
With Mars retrograde in Aries, the reflection will be about the ethics of self-aggrandizement and the meaning of leadership, the obligation of the self to be in relationship to the collective.
Mars retrograde can also surface struggles that have been brewing under the surface. Mid way through Mars’ retrograde cycle (mid-October) – when the Sun opposes Mars retrograde — there can be a feeling of frustration, of I can’t take this anymore, I can’t bear the injustice. The sense of being “in reaction to” people and to external forces for the first half of Mars retrograde shifts to more strategic action on the part of conscious people. For those ruled by impulse and chaos – that would be Donald Trump—the pull of chaos grows stronger and creates more turmoil. Sigh.
At this point in the cycle—and I will have more to say about this in my October column—there can be a deep challenge to the status quo.
Mars retrograde can bring surprises, shocks, upsets. This particular stretch of Mars retrograde is complicated by its triggering angles to the major planets retrograding in Capricorn right now: Jupiter, Saturn, Pluto. Oy veh. Mars spends the last half of September squaring Saturn and this aspect continues into October.
We are also getting the last taste of Saturn and Pluto being 3 degrees away from each other during September and October – so everyone’s sense of impending apocalypse is very heightened right now.
But Mars retrograde in a 90 degree to angle to Saturn for 3 weeks? I saw that coming and assumed it was another series of intense quarantines. Given who has guns in this country and the increasing threat from armed white supremacist militias, it could be a rough few weeks of violence and repression. I also think that Mars retrograde can be highly creative and open some new possibilities …and we never know what can happen. (Who would have thought professional ball players would strike and demand arenas be used for voting?)
So expect the unexpected!
Here are my projections – or fantasies – about what Mars retrograde could mean for our nation that is already in turmoil.
Mars retrograde Fantasy #1—the military has to escort Trump out of office.
Mars retrograde Fantasy #2: Trump gets too tired of his job because Mars retrograde is wreaking havoc in his chart, and he gives it up.
Mars retrograde Fantasy #3: Massive strikes occur in the US for housing, income, food, racial justice. Teacher strikes, sports strikes, general strikes.
Mars retrograde Necessity #4: We all drop everything and do get out the vote.
By the time of my October column Mars retrograde’s impact will be a bit clearer than it is now. And then there is November. You don’t need an astrologer to know the US elections will be a mess. Mercury will be turning from retrograde to direct on Election Day. The last time Mercury and Mars were retrograde on Election Day was the year 2000—recounts, hanging chads, and the Supreme Court decided the election.
This year we will be in the streets!!
I am heartened by the fact that Mars retrograde does rip through Trump’s chart like a velociraptor, while its transit through Biden’s is more consonant with Mars’ action in the US’s chart. The US — with its July 4th Cancer birthday– wants a Good Dad – in that Cancerian kinda way. And Kamala Harris gets the Jupiter-Saturn conjunction of November/December moving right across her Libra Sun. I think that’s a good sign…. Just sayin.