Astrology at the junction of Fate and Free Will.

“I don’t want to be the one
The battles always choose
‘Cause inside I realize
That I’m the one confused

I don’t know what’s worth fighting for
Or why I have to scream
I don’t know why I instigate
And say what I don’t mean
I don’t know how I got this way
I know it’s not alright
So I’m breaking the habit
I’m breaking the habit
Tonight…”

                                    -Linkin Park, “Breaking the Habit”

Illustration from Hans von Gersdorff’s “Feldbuch der Wundartzney”; a surgeon’s field manual from the early 1500’s.

Such perfect lyrics for this particular astrological placement! The battle wounds suffered by the Chiron in Aries generation (those born between April of ’68 – March of ’77) are apt to manifest as a bit of a Wounded Warrior complex; particularly as it relates to anger. Generally the issues with this placement of Chiron tend to relate the concept of healthy self-assertion, where one knows how to stand up for themselves without going ballistic. The position of and aspects to Mars are critical to examine and especially so if any astrological contact is made between Mars and Chiron. Investigation of the Red Planet can give us an idea of whether or not one struggles to assert themselves and thus allows themselves to be dominated by bullies (which one is likely to continue being faced with until they learn how to muster the bravery to stand up to them), sweeps it under the rug and pretends it isn’t there (until it is and then oh boy look out!), or perhaps errs on the side of having an explosive hair-trigger temper that redlines at the slightest provocation. With Chiron in Aries there can sometimes be a tendency to perceive an affront where none is intended, then react on the premise that “The best defense is a good offense”. One may find themselves embroiled in conflict, which from a spiritual point of view actually serves to push the soul toward healing wherever end of this spectrum they may be struggling with. Regardless of whether one chronically runs from confrontation or instead instigates it, healthy integration of the “Warrior” archetype is an integral component of Chiron’s “Medicine” when it is found in Aries.

12/09/2017

Message From Saturn

As I ran down the hill to reach the end of my first mile, I noted an elderly gentleman standing roadside by his mailbox.  I thought nothing of it at first but then I saw that after retrieving his mail he just stood there, watching me pass by with a cheerful expression on his face as he clapped both hands together. “Keep going – you can do it!” He urged as if I were some kind of marathon runner he was rooting for.  Maintaining my pace I smiled and replied, “Thanks – I try!  Some days are harder than others but today’s not too bad.  Have a good one!” as I ran past.

Right after I finished speaking I was struck by how this exchange was actually a great metaphor for life while simultaneously taking comfort that Saturn – in the form of this senior citizen – was offering me encouragement to persevere.  “If only you knew, Old Man….” I thought to myself with a wry smile.  😉

With Mercury currently conjunct Saturn for a second time (exact on December 6th), we’re all getting similar “Saturn Mail” at the moment; that is to say we should be paying special attention to the messages delivered to us from elders, parents, teachers, and other Saturnian “authority figures” now.  This conjunction perfected for the first time on 11/28; a date when I not coincidentally had a lovely dinner & conversation with a retiree friend. Because of Mercury’s retrograde, the third and final conjunction of these two planets won’t be until 1/13/2018 but do look for similar refrains between these 3 dates to see what messages Saturn may have for you – hopefully, you’ll be on good (or at least speaking) terms!

Statue of Mercury atop Grand Central Terminal, NYC. Photo credit: Purple74

12/04/2017

The upcoming Mercury Retrograde in December promises to be more interesting than most for a few reasons – there are many nuanced and in-your-face energetic layers in the mix at the time this retrograde kicks off (December 3, 2017), but for the purposes of this post right now I’ll stick to discussing the components that give a broader and unique context on what’s really going on.  There’s something more significant playing out underneath all of this besides the normal Mercury Rx communication glitches and don’t-sign-anything caveats…

One factor that makes *this particular* Mercury Retrograde period unusual is due to its kickoff overlapping with the Gemini (i.e. a Mercury-ruled) Full Moon; a mere 8 hours separates these twin events! Uncanny as it is to see double the Mercurial energy in the astrological air at the same time, there’s an important subtext inherent in this by virtue of the fact the Full Moon also falls along a degree of the zodiac sensitized by last year’s Saturn/Neptune Square. The Sun is lighting up 12 degrees Sagittarius; almost exactly the same spot Saturn occupied on June 17, 2016 when the Saturn/Neptune Square perfected for the second time.  This being a Full Moon, the Moon of course sits opposite the Sun at 12 degrees Gemini while Neptune – having recently turned Direct – squares both luminaries from essentially the same place it did in the middle of last year when Saturn was on the scene instead.

What’s really going to bake your noodle, though, is the fact Mercury (which we remember is the ruler of the aforementioned Full Moon that is reigniting the energetic residue of the Saturn/Neptune Square) weaves back and forth between a conjunction to Saturn and a square to Neptune during its upcoming retrograde!  Again we’re seeing an astrological imprint of the Saturn/Neptune Square’s reverberations – during this entire retrograde period, it’s as if Mercury is acting as an intermediary to bring us some sort of message from mid 2016. Basically, in December we’re all collectively getting a phantom redial from the Saturn/Neptune Square where weird messages from the past may send their ghost-like echoes into our Now.

What does all of this translate to?  December is going to be a real temporal vortex of a month for one – we may well receive some kind of (literal or figurative) call or message from the mid-June 2016 era.  What’s the memo, exactly?  It will vary for each person but this entire Mercury retrograde phase (all of December & into the beginning of January) should be thought of as a sort of wrinkle in time connecting that period to our present somehow. Think about what was going on in your life in the middle of last year to get an idea of the theme this retrograde may have in store for you.  Geopolitically, this should ring some major bells – Brexit happened during this time and I will not be surprised to see more news on this topic hitting in a big way very shortly.

We should also be aware this may be a collect call (LOL, I just realized youngsters won’t have any concept of what this is!) – metaphorically speaking, it will be good to think twice if something comes up for our review during this period to make sure there isn’t any toll (read: lesson) we’ll have to accept if we answer.  For example, if the Saturn/Neptune Square in June of 2016 manifested as major disillusionment regarding a parent, mentor, authority figure, or spiritual leader and suddenly December comes around and we hear through the grapevine this very same individual has been asking about us, is it really worth picking up the receiver for them? Think carefully about any kind of “sequel” situations arising this month – often the second movie isn’t as good as the first. And if the first sucked, well….it’s not likely to get much better with time, let’s put it that way.

Now the “memo” Mercury brings us in December may not necessarily be a “repeat” kind of situation as mentioned above; it could also simply represent a cosmic communiqué regarding where we may have erred during the Saturn/Neptune Square of 2016. For example, perhaps we were excessively Saturn; too closed/self-limiting/defensive/pessimistic/ambitious/overworked/cautious (pick any or all that apply). Or maybe we were OD-ing on Neptune’s denial/escapism/fantasizing/delusions/self-martyrdom. From a cognitive POV, Mercury will be letting us know which mentalities are holding us back so we can make revisions accordingly during this time. Mercury represents a “both/and” rather than an “either/or” influence so we’re intellectually integrating the Saturnian principles of wisdom, practicality, maturity, responsibility, and structure with the Neptunian concepts of intuition, imagination, compassion, spirituality, and free-flowingness so we’re neither excessively earthbound nor living in La La Land building castles in the air.

11/29/2017

It’s not every day asteroid Chiron visits our Venus (thank goodness!) – Chiron is far enough out in our solar system that it moves pretty slowly, so years pass from the time it makes one aspect to a planet or point in our natal chart to contacting that very same spot again via a different astrological aspect.  If you want to understand the basic premise of how transits between Chiron and Venus operate, just have a listen below:

“Never insecure until I met you
(Now I’m bein’ stupid)
I used to be so cute to me
(Just a little bit skinny)
Why do I look to all these things
To keep you happy?
Maybe get rid of you
And then I’ll get back to me…

My outsides look cool
My insides are blue
Every time I think I’m through
It’s because of you
I’ve tried different ways
But it’s all the same
At the end of the day
I have myself to blame
Can’t believe I’m trippin’….

You can buy your hair if it won’t grow
You can fix your nose if he says so
You can buy all the makeup
That MAC can make
But if you can’t look inside you
Find out who am I to
Be in the position to make me feel so
Damn unpretty…”

                              -TLC, “Unpretty”

Even the “easy” contacts (sextile and trine) between Chiron and Venus can feel raw – deep wounds regarding our own sense of attractiveness, self-worth, and value tend to surface when these planets make aspect; particularly as this is reflected back to us through the mirror of relationship (or the lack thereof). Often this expresses as a crippling internal ache regarding the ways in which we’ve been commodified and/or objectified – especially for the sake of illuminating how we may have done this to ourselves.  This isn’t to imply we’re to blame, but it does give perspective on the vulnerabilities we’ve had in the fabric or our own self-worth that made such tears possible.  “Hard” contacts between Chiron and Venus (conjunction, square, opposition, quincunx) can be especially brutal, tripping off every insecurity we have related to our attractiveness as well as our sense of value as a human being.  We may look to Others to make us feel (superficially) whole, potentially attracting agonizing and sometimes even abusive relationship dynamics for the sake of getting us to realize this must be healed from within.

Because women are broadly ruled by Venus, this has the ability to be especially heart-rending for the fairer sex and it may have us addressing deep-seated injuries regarding our sense of femininity.  Though both sexes can certainly resonate with any and all of these themes, it is worth pointing out that men may tend to experience this energy more through the lens of financial issues since (even still in this day and age) the sense of self-worth tends to be more readily tied up in what they are or aren’t making monetarily.  Very broadly speaking and certainly with exceptions, women do seem to internalize Venus energy a bit more while men often look at it more as a tangible resource.  Again, this isn’t meant to be one-size-fits-all astrology, but any time we talk about “gendered” planets such as Mars or Venus we do well to consider basic differences between the sexes in considering how that planetary energy may express. Over time I feel this will be less and less the case as we continue evolving as a species and increasing room is made to circumvent the gender binary, but for the sake of not derailing this post further that will have to be a topic for another time.  Regardless of gender my point is merely that part and parcel of Chiron affecting Venus is that it may very well affect matters relating to what we earn and have; especially as this impacts our sense of self-worth.

No matter what form the manifestation(s) of this energy take, it’s important to understand Chiron never leaves us bereft of Medicine – despite how excruciating a visit from this cosmic Centaur may be, it always prompts us to heal from within and address any congenital weakness impeding our soul’s evolution.  There is something achingly beautiful about this process, where we’re often rubbed raw in order to realize that we’re so much more than just our wrapping paper and the love that we would give to others must first be gifted to the Self.  ❤

11/26/2017

“We’re building it up
To break it back down
We’re building it up
To burn it down
We can’t wait
To burn it to the ground”

                                                – “Burn It Down” by Linkin Park

The above lyrics so perfectly encapsulate the upcoming conjunction between Saturn and Pluto in Capricorn!  Though we’re a couple of years away from this significant astrological alignment (which occurs on January 12, 2020), this is something we’re going to want advanced notice of for a number of reasons. For the purposes of this post, for now I’ll just say that it be becomes VERY important to be careful of what we’re building up in our lives and how we’re going about accomplishing this during the time period leading up to this conjunction.  Whatever it is, we have to be nuclear conscious that it’s firmly rooted in integrity or a lesson may come in the form of it being razed to the ground. Prep for this now, because if there is a goal you could see yourself committing significant amounts of time and energy into for the foreseeable future (and many will be with Saturn soon moving into Capricorn on December 19), this conjunction may prove a crucial make-or-break point.  Our basic energetic framework has to be rock solid, because if it isn’t we may well discover a fatal structural flaw at this time; a rot that goes down to the very bones of the thing and acts like a cancer.  I do get the feeling of a potential “Sisyphean Task” with this conjunction – for those not familiar with the mythos, Sisyphus was the ancient king of Corinth; an evil man with a horrid totalitarian streak and also a cunning liar who fancied himself more clever than Zeus.  His wicked ways eventually caught up with him and the Olympian gods sentenced him in death to forever roll a boulder up a steep hill in Hades, and just before the boulder would reach the top it would roll back down again.

The myth is applicable to the potent conjunction of Saturn and Pluto in Capricorn for a number of reasons; the first being that if he hadn’t been such a lying, thieving, rotten scoundrel who had managed to give himself such a bad reputation as to rouse the ire of the gods then perhaps this whole outcome could have been completely avoided.  So the first takeaway is how important integrity is; how there is no substitute for making sure we’re building upon the right energetic underpinnings in word & deed. Ethically funky conduct WILL come back to bite us during this conjunction; particularly if/when it stems from repressing shadow aspects of the Self. Getting real about where we have internal work to do – especially as it pertains to ambition and our drive for success – and checking ourselves BEFORE moving forward with the plan can help us turn those character defects from liabilities into core competencies.  Think of it as an anchor that will help us to avoid the potentially unpleasant side effects of this energy.

Secondly, as illustrated perfectly in the lyrics above Saturn’s conjunction with Pluto in Capricorn has a build/scrap(/re-build?) theme that in and of itself seems rather Sisyphean.  I don’t mean to imply that it’s necessarily futile; rather in the context of there being an up/down cycle of construction/demolition along the vein of Newton’s Law of Universal Gravity that states “What goes up must come down”. This isn’t inherently a bad thing in itself; for example if we depersonalize it a bit we can see how the capacity of this energy to both build and destroy not only old outdated systems (like Patriarchy) but it could also be helpful for constructing more functional and sustainable models of government and business.  Pluto’s motto is “Let go or be dragged”, and if we’re clinging to corrupt non-functional status quos for the sake of “stability” or “normalcy” maybe it does have to reach a breaking point where it gets bad enough to be leveled as a means toward an end: renewal.  We may be very close to this point in the USA – America’s Pluto Return is in 2022, just two years after this conjunction.  What that said, taking it from the macro back down to the micro it’s important to understand that whatever we’re building in the next two years will be subject to this same Universal Law of Gravity cycle; if not directly then by virtue of the fact this conjunction has such deep geopolitical implications for the world at large that it will be difficult to avoid one way or the other.  This doesn’t mean “panic”, but what it does realistically mean is our plan/model should be built for resiliency and mustn’t be so rigid that it couldn’t withstand a restructure of some kind should the need arise in the future. And the important keynote will be having the wisdom to know when to execute that contingency plan, which is a crucial component of risk management.  Holding onto something with an iron grip while riding it off the rails is hardly a desirable outcome – prevent this by pumping the brakes before it gets to this point, even if it means taking a loss. Sometimes the “win” is just in surviving; calculating what is a recoverable loss vs. a total loss and pulling the plug before it all winds up going down the drain.

Third, there is some measure of wisdom in contemplating the nature of Sisyphean Task in the truest sense of the word regarding wastes of time/effort/energy.  Hearkening back to what I said a moment ago about differentiating between a recoverable loss vs. a total loss, there’s wisdom in knowing when to pull out of things that aren’t yielding sufficient and tangible ROI (Return On Investment) as this conjunction draws near.  If we think of the conjunction of Saturn with Pluto in Capricorn as representing the crucial test of a “make-or-break” point mentioned earlier, by the time this astrological alignment perfects in January 2020 if we’ve embarked on a project/mission/goal and have found ourselves sinking slowly into literal or energetic debt without substantial yields it may be time to fold.  It’s about consolidating any losses and taking them as a lesson learned rather than letting them bankrupt us.

11/19/2017

Antares In The News

LOL, NASA scientists love kicking sand in the direction of astrology and yet somehow just as cosmic courier Mercury (known as the Messenger Planet for a reason!) aligns with Fixed Star Antares, they elect to launch an “Antares” rocket to carry supplies up to the International Space Station. Coincidence? I think not!  Astrologically, Mercury also = news and it sure is awfully funny that we have headlines hitting about “Antares” as a result of Mercury’s conjunction with said star/NASA’s hijinks.

Eye see you, NASA – you knew what you were doing there! 👁😉

And PS: You might want to wait until it escapes that square with Neptune.

11/11/17

With Venus now settled into Scorpio for the next 3 ½ weeks, we now have a mutual reception between Venus and Mars in place! Mars is the Traditional ruler of Scorpio and with the Red Planet currently traversing Venus’s Libra kingdom while Venus herself occupies his Scorpio domain, this creates an energy exchange even though the two planets aren’t otherwise linked.

What might we expect from this Venus/Mars mutual reception? Well this energy can be a bit problematic for both sexes since “men are from Mars/women are from Venus” and both planets are debilitated in the signs they’re currently occupying. Very generally speaking, men are apt to be more acquiescing while women adopt a more “take no prisoners” approach. Overall this vibe can have a rather “genderbent” kind of feel to it and reversals of stereotypical gender roles in relationships may become more common. This mutual reception can also evoke a “War of the Roses” vibe so do remember this if in the midst of a contentious split and divvying up possessions/assets.

That’s not all, though – the current mutual reception between Venus in Scorpio and Mars in Libra may elicit power struggles in relationships. For best results, focus energy instead on sharing/taking turns/mutual compromise. This duo is also quite lusty and amps up amorous attraction between individuals; while passionate, there is a hazard of leading into a relationship with sex because of this. And as I am fond of saying, chemistry does not necessarily equal compatibility; sometimes it’s like oil and water! More broadly, turbulence in partnerships may be denoted by this pairing; be this for business or pleasure.

The takeaway is to tread a bit more lightly in relationships than we otherwise would for the next few weeks. Thankfully this mutual reception doesn’t last too long and once it’s gone Mars will be in a powerhouse position while Venus receives a lighter, more uplifting boost. And it’s not as if the *entire* mutual reception period is problematic; the trickiest days will be circa Nov 19th as Mars squares Pluto and at the very end of the month near Nov 30th as Mars opposes Uranus just as this mutual reception comes to a close. Think of it more as prevailing scenery that sometimes interacts with us; like the apple-throwing trees in The Wizard of Oz.  😝

11/07/2017

One of the many perks of Jupiter’s year-long passage through Scorpio is that it does herald a boost for bedroom-related matters! There’s an intimate openness about Jupiter in this sign that encourages exploration and helps us truly (re?)connect with the Joy of Sex.  I don’t just mean the purely mechanical biological components of it, either – we’re talking the total, erm, package. Forgive the unintentional pun, but I mean to convey it encompasses so much more than the physiological part of the equation; we’re talking everything – sexual politics, views, beliefs, philosophies, paradigms, the honesty with which we approach sexual matters; all our naked Truths about sex & sexuality basically. It also presents an opportunity for stripped-down candor where we can disrobe in every sense of the word, so promotes true intimacy *beyond* the mere corporeal.  This, in turn, may create a positive feedback loop that can serve as a natural bedroom enhancement – when there’s deeper layers of trust, understanding, & tolerance, we’re certainly apt to be more generous in the sack.

It’s important to understand that Jupiter in Scorpio correlates to psychological growth as well, and if there’s been something buried in our psyche that prevents a happy fulfilling sex life, the therapeutic process can be an enormous benefit to us during this time. Initially this may present as the trauma in question being magnified for us in some way – for example, in the wake of the  recent huge Jupiter-in-Scorpio news about high-profile sexual predators like Weinstein & Toback et al,  a massive glut of unpleasant stuff has indeed been blown up in the collective psyche regarding such matters.  As triggering and disturbing as it may be for these kinds of horrible truths to come to light, Jupiter always offers the opportunity for improvement. So if we’ve been hiding a Truth that has deeply and perhaps perniciously impacted our most private and intimate beliefs about sex and sexuality, there’s a chance for us to also transmute this through understanding into a lighter, less dense state.  Through no fault of our own, sometimes the soul becomes infected with malicious operating scripts that taint our enjoyment and happiness – with Scorpio being the sex sign, this is especially so in the bedroom. However, this passage presents an opportune moment to open up regarding taboo subject matter such as this in order to offer us renewed hope and optimism.  It’s important to remember that even out of evil circumstances, something powerfully good can emerge.  So if something has psychologically contaminated the Joy of Sex for us, it behooves us to explore how we might enhance this area of our lives for the better.

11/02/2017

The next few weeks may have some bittersweet blessings in store as Jupiter in Scorpio is joined by the Sun on October 26, 2017 and then Venus on November 13, 2017. The first 10 degrees of Scorpio are going to see some action, affecting not only those with planets or points in this area of the zodiac but also anyone who has placements within this degree range of any of the other Fixed signs (Taurus, Leo, Aquarius), Water signs (Cancer & Pisces), or Earth signs (Taurus, Virgo, Capricorn). There’s something for just about everyone it seems, and although the circumstances arising near these times may seem ill-fated it will be important to bear in mind the larger anchoring influence of Jupiter in Scorpio underpinning these conjunctions means that even out of something “evil”, something powerfully good can emerge.

In just a few days’ time the Scorpio Sun will join with Jupiter right in between the 3 and 4 degree mark of this sign, signifying an opportunity for some deep and possibly psychologically-oriented growth to occur. While this energy may indicate it happening as the result of some kind of loss (because Jupiter in Scorpio will tend to magnify losses and endings), this alignment does have a “let go to gain” kind of feel so it will be important *not* to be consumed by the perspective of what is gone/passing from our lives now. Believe instead that it all works out for the best in the end – sometimes, even a craptastic ending can be better than stagnation. If something in our lives is/has become toxic, it’s better that it be allowed to pass from our lives so we can devote more of our energy to moving onward & upward. As a general FYI, legal matters, collegiate issues, religious/moral/political concerns, as well as in-law relationships (if applicable) tend to take on increased emphasis during this time and may indeed be where this “letting go” is called for. Mind you there certainly *can* be more outright positive manifestations of this energy, as any Sun/Jupiter conjunction brings the phrase “I’d rather be lucky than good” to mind and sometimes we don’t have to choose because we’re blessed to be both. However, the turbulent nature of Scorpio – though incredibly insightful – tends to bring a darker hue to this conjunction’s blessings, cloaking them and perhaps causing them to seem invisible to those who don’t know where to look (Hint: Inward is always a good direction when Scorpio is involved).

The conjunction of Venus with Jupiter in Scorpio happens just a few weeks later at 7 degrees of this sign. Even with Venus debilitated in the sign of her Detriment it’s hard to deny the positive facets of both benefics being teamed up like this, though the vibe may indeed carry a rather “bittersweet” flavor overall. Venus in Scorpio is the magnetic Feminine, attracting complex but enriching, growth-oriented scenarios when it comes to relationships or finances. From a fiscal point of view Venus/Jupiter pairings can be lucrative, though again because we are dealing with Scorpio energy there can be a loss/ending theme prompting this. Some examples of this can run the gamut from a large inheritance to a sizable divorce settlement or anything else that would involve taking a loss for greater material gain. Another facet of Venus/Jupiter pairings is its gluttonous vice for extravagance, and the underlying Scorpio vibe can bring a covetous feel to the equation; like someone maxing out their credit cards or going into debt with a big (balloon??) loan for some kind of massive expenditure. An actual investment that has calculated ROI is one thing, but we must remember that with these planets all ruled by Pluto in Capricorn, taking on any kind of “dumb debt” is a definite “no”!

As far as the love end of this equation goes, things can get complicated when Venus is in Scorpio and even moreso with Jupiter boosting this. On one hand this pairing can magnify dysfunctional relationship dynamics with the hope of improving the alliance as we increase our level of insight, especially around areas involving sharing, fairness, money, possessiveness, and/or power/control issues. This conjunction may also facilitate an opportunity for us to put our chips “all in” regarding a partnership and help us uncover the true meaning of “intimacy” in a union. It won’t be easy but the right synergistic alchemy between partners can facilitate massive growth, empowerment, and transformation for both parties, though again this may come at some kind of expense. Perhaps it will entail letting go of a (toxic?) union to facilitate greater, more fertile space for a better one to enter in the future. At its best this conjunction can attract a partner/partnership that intimidates us in a *good* way; where we are more *together* than just the sum of our parts and share the philosophy that leveling up means we must “root down to rise up” from deep within. But first it may well entail getting intimately acquainted with our more dysfunctional beliefs about love…

10/22/2017

Queue up the NIN; this 13-month long passage of Jupiter through Scorpio totally has a “Heresy” feel to it in my mind!

“He sewed his eyes shut
Because he is afraid to see.
He tries to tell me
What I put inside of me.
He’s got the answers
To ease my curiosity.
He dreamed a god up
And called it Christianity.

God is dead
And no one cares.
If there is a hell
I’ll see you there.”      -Heresy, by Nine Inch Nails (NIN)

 
Why do I say this?  See the following excerpt from my October 2017 newsletter:

“…there is a polarizing dynamic regarding this placement that tends to express as zealot or heretic with little-to-no in between – it’s a placement of passionate intensity as it pertains to religious, political, and cultural views that can veer toward rather extreme philosophies or, conversely, deeply resentful of dogma/conservatism/fundamentalism. Jupiter in Scorpio represents the metaphorical (moral or philosophical) “hill” we are willing to “die” on, and one thing is for sure while we’re under its influence: We’re not apt to be lukewarm about what we believe at all…”

Now do you see why I deliberately chose the song above, LOL? Regardless of whether or not Nine Inch Nails is your preferred cup of tea, one facet of Jupiter in Scorpio is indeed sacrilegious; it’s where we hold the Sacred Cow up for slaughter. We may indeed be tempted to preach some taboo Truths during this transit, and certain sects will be threatened by the publication of these “secret gospels” – just ask sexual predator-at-large Harvey Weinstein.  It may be ugly, but that doesn’t mean it’s false – those shouting “Blasphemy!” do well to remember this.

10/17/2017

Grab your popcorn & turn off all the lights; we’ve got a real Thriller of a 13 month-long astro-passage on our hands starting…now!

Jupiter amps things up; in Scorpio it magnifies the “Halloween” vibe and extends it for an entire year+. If you read my October newsletter, then you already know some of the key themes you might expect from this energy. If you didn’t….well, you’ll just have to find out; hopefully *before* it’s too late, mwahahaha! 👿 😉  I’m joking, BTW (in case it wasn’t obvious) – nothing terrible will befall you & this transit is actually more “Creepy Comedy” (à la The Addams Family) than straight-up Thriller, though it will certainly have its moments!

10/10/2017

The Mercury/Venus Mutual Reception: Mercury will be in Libra; Venus in Virgo.

The Mercury/Venus Mutual Reception: Mercury is in Libra; Venus in Virgo.

NB: The following is an updated repost outlining some themes that will be relevant for the next week and a half while the mutual reception of Mercury and Venus continues to play out.

Just a head’s up that we have a mutual reception in play until October  14th – Mercury & Venus are currently playing the role of exchange students by occupying each other’s home signs!  Mercury and Venus mix and mingle their energies; playing off each other for a total period of about 3 weeks – a period that began on September 29th when Mercury entered Libra.   Here are some highlighted themes you may notice in play as a result of this combo:

Discrimination involving our choice of partners; combining work and love; saying nice things; the health of a Significant Other or biz partner; being conscious of our dietary sugar intake; talking about partnerships; sibling relationships; diplomatic conversations; discussions that involve fair give-and-take; kidney health; finding love in the workplace; tactful choice of words; mental equilibrium; love at the gym; getting along w/ your coworkers; appreciating your employees; criticism from a spouse or Significant Other; evaluating the health of a partnership; looking at relationship routines; the girl next door; married to your job; a balanced diet; relationships with neighbors; intestinal flora and the enteric balance; analyzing how we earn/spend money; assessing financial health; a job we love; lazy co-workers/employees; working on our relationship; making the everyday luxe; beauty routines; discriminating taste; relationships on the brain; making money with our hands or communication abilities; working with your Sweetie; relationship news; agreements in writing; a love of cleanliness & organization; helpful & pleasant; service with a smile; whistle while you work; the equal distribution of chores in a partnership; money made in service trades; picking lovely & perfect words; improving relationships by talking things out & via soft, kind criticisms; say it with flowers.

10/03/2017

Behold; the Garden Goddess!  The fruits of her (many!) labors lay lusciously upon the vine as she luxuriates in the gifts her own efficiency and productivity have begotten.  A Vestal Virgin’s pleasure she takes in a job well-done and in the financial independence she has as a result!

The 9 of Pentacles, courtesy of the RWS Tarot.

Sometimes, though, Venus in Virgo feels more like:

I’m rather fond of referring to this placement as “Cinderelly Venus” at times – Venus is located in the sign of her astrological Fall in Virgo, meaning this planet has a difficult time expressing herself in a manner that’s truest to her intrinsic nature. Rather than refined and elegant, she is relegated to mere “Serving Wench” status when in Virgo – the ball gown becomes an apron and the sparkling tiara naught but a humble kerchief.

Complicating this even further is the fact that Venus is currently palling around with malefic Mars; a further coarsening influence upon this genteel lady.  And once this conjunction w/ Mars perfects on 10/5 (Thursday), she’s also besieged by a square to restrictive Saturn. Translation: This is likely to be a tough week overall on the love & money fronts; both domains which Venus rules. Cease any carping, general fussbudgeting, and stinginess and instead invest considerable mental and physical energy into something you love doing – busy yourself in wholly immersive work and you won’t have time or energy to sweat petty stuff.  Other areas of particularly productive micro-focus can also include nutrition, exercise, health & wellness, and cleanliness – Venus in Virgo loves all these areas and its prolonged contact to Mars gives us the drive to do something about it!

10/02/2017

Jupiter Opposite Uranus

The vibe du jour, pictorially and lyrically – this alignment perfects for a final time tonight!

Courtesy of the RWS Tarot: Jupiter (represented by the Wheel of Fortune) and Uranus (represented by The Fool).

“Left a good job in The City,
Workin’ for The Man every night & day,
And I never lost one minute of sleepin’
Worryin’ ‘bout the way things might have been.

Big wheel keep on turnin’…”

– Proud Mary by CCR

09/27/2017

***See also:  Jupiter In Libra Opposite Uranus In Aries, Part 1
                     Jupiter In Libra Opposite Uranus In Aries, Part 2
                    Jupiter In Libra Opposite Uranus In Aries, Part 3

One of the upsides of the upcoming culminating opposition between Jupiter in Libra and Uranus in Aries is its capacity to sometimes crack things wide open in a *good* way; unexpected windfalls and/or opportunities can strike from nowhere faster than you can blink an eye under this vibe!  For example (and I swear these are all true stories!): During the first two oppositions between these planets (December 2016 and March 2017, respectively) I personally know of 3 different people who all had amazing strokes of luck.  In the first instance, someone wrote an amusing cheeky letter to the GM of a major pro sports team and actually got comped trip to the team’s home city + tickets to a game because of this!  In the second, a friend of a friend won over 5 figures on football bets.  On a third completely unrelated (well, other than the astro, LOL) instance, someone *else* I know *also* won a large sum.  Now I’m not saying money will just drop out of the sky (it *can*, although this is a rarer manifestation), but what I mean to illustrate via these examples is the idea that good surprises we never see coming *do* happen. We need to believe that “freak” things aren’t automatically bad and can actually be quite good; those awesome moments that leave you chuckling and smiling happily to yourself while wondering “What are the odds??”  Definitely hold space for fortuitous surprises under this vibe, because you never know…!

Oh and: This opposition perfects during the wee hours (ET) of September 28, 2017 – just in case you’re looking to by a scratch ticket for laughs, aim for the early morning of September 27th, just before 7am ET when the Moon in lucky Sagittarius smiles upon this opposition.  If you are so inclined, wake up early and head down to the 24 hour corner store to maximize your chances.

Big money, no whammies!

09/18/2017

 

LOL, check out this Google Doodle celebrating the 308th birthday of Samuel Johnson; a Virgo – it may be the most Virgo thing I’ve ever seen:

😀  The description of him as a “harmless drudge that busies himself in tracing the original and detailing the signification of words” is what really sealed the deal – I just about died laughing! This is so Virgo, it hurts LOL; way to live up to your astrological archetype, fella! Keep calm and Virgo on!

09/18/2017

Image credit: D Sharon Pruitt

I tried to outrun the gathering storm – it worked, for a while. But the minuscule drips soon turned to cascading droplets and there was no escaping it – I was out in the weather. The pouring heavens cried; I felt their tears wick through my soft cotton tank and into my sports bra as I ran through the deluge. I tried in vain to dry the sky’s eyes but the thin streams trickling down the side of the road soon eddied and gushed into small rivers, soaking hair, skin, feet. I surrendered completely to the rain, allowing it to wash over me as I received its absolution; blessed holy water from above cleansing mankind of its transgressions. Sometimes we all need a good cry – Mother Earth is no exception. I made my peace with the downpour as I pressed on, knowing sanctuary awaited if I just kept moving forward.

09/06/17

Mars Enters Virgo

Welcome to Mars in Virgo! There is no scene in the history of cinema that describes this vibe more perfectly than the following clip:



“What was this drug? I couldn’t stay messy on it, hadn’t had a cigarette in 6 hours, hadn’t eaten…so abstemious and tidy..? What was this; a drug for people who wanted to be more anal retentive? I wasn’t high, wasn’t wired; just clear – I knew what I needed to do and how to do it.”
LOL, no substances required; it’s just you on Mars in Virgo! 😀 So clean the bejezus out of everything, organize your life, nix the nicotine/caffeine/anything screwing with your health, and cut all the crap out of your diet – this energy is guerrilla nutrition at its finest; fight back against lethargy and inertia with a kickass diet and exercise routine that motivates you to operate at peak health and efficiency!

09/05/2017

Vintage Mars In Leo Vibe

This one comes to us courtesy of the (Violent) Femmes:

 

“Day after day
I get angry
And I will say
That the day
Is in my sight
When I’ll take a bow
And say goodnight!”

LOL, I think it’s cute that he omits the part involving the spectacular fanfare which tends to accompany this “Exit, stage right!” – when Mars in Leo is angry, the one thing you can be sure of is there will be some kind of “scene” just before that bow.  😛

On a hunch, I felt compelled to run a chart for Violent Femmes lead singer/songwriter Gordon Gano. While he was born mere days after Mars exited Leo, he *does*, however, still have Mars located adjacent to über Leo star Regulus; flagship star of this constellation sometimes referred to as the Heart of the Lion whose literal astronomical designation *is* Alpha Leonis – I knew the lyric sounded familiar and had that Mars in Leo-like “ring” to it.

08/28/2017

Shamanic Chiron, Part 2

***Get caught up with Part 1 of this series HERE.

I do not use the term “shamanic” lightly at all when discussing Chiron – I sometimes hear this word thrown around rather casually within the spiritual community (often within the context of someone describing experiences with things such as psilocybin, peyote, or ayahuasca) and to me it feels…disrespectful; as if it were some kind of catch-all term watering down the word’s real significance. While I do not dismiss the cultural and spiritual role such substances play when safely and respectfully handled in their proper ritualistic contexts by the proper people with proper training and authority, if you’re equating being in an altered state of consciousness as the sum total of “shamanic”, IMO you’ve got it all wrong. Waaaaay wrong – *that* is Neptune’s domain; more on this particular distinction in a moment.

Needless to say, I must admit that I cringe a little inside whenever this happens because to me it feels to me like cultural appropriation; especially if/when the word “shamanic” is being astrologically ascribed to a celestial body other than Chiron. Chiron is so often overlooked as it is in astrology that it hardly seems fair to take his “land” away like this; much in the same way the conquistadors of yore encroached upon the native kingdoms of indigenous peoples; the results of which were effectively cultural – if not literal – genocide. I do not want Chiron to suffer the same fate in a cosmic context, so as an astrologer I find myself rather protective of his domain and of the keywords that resonate with this vibration. In my eyes, Uranus is the clairvoyant, Neptune the mystic, and Pluto the occultist but it is Chiron alone who has the ability to walk the liminal boundary between Earth and Sky to reconnect body and Spirit with the Earth and the element of Aether for profound healing. It can be literal healing of mind/body/soul or it can be more figurative in nature, but the word “shamanic” is less about experiences with psychedelics and more about Initiation into a Medicine of one stripe or another that helps us to understand life on a profoundly different level so we can heal others. The modality(ies) can be different for each person, but the effects are the same.

I mentioned in Part 1 of this series that I have seen this celestial body’s fingerprint feature very strongly both in the charts of clients whose personal sacred beliefs resonate closely with those of indigenous peoples and those who literally follow a shamanic Path in terms of being actual healers. One of the more memorable consultations I had along these lines was for a woman seeking career guidance – I remember telling her that she had actual shamanic lineage flowing through her blood and was rather stunned when she subsequently revealed that she was in fact descended from the Inca people. Needless to say, I have no doubt in my mind her ancestors had indeed served as the village healers!

However, don’t just take my word for it – there are also many famous figures that provide us with some great examples of the Chiron vibe. The first and most literal that comes to mind is the nativity of controversial author Carlos Castaneda; a man with (not surprisingly for someone known for writing several books on the subject of Mesoamerican shamanism) Chiron in the area of his chart associated with writing and communication. Castaneda is a Capricorn (ruled by Saturn) with Aquarius Rising (co-ruled by Saturn) with Saturn sitting in tight but funky aspect to Chiron. Chiron is also linked up to fuzzy fictional Neptune, which means Saturn & Neptune are in a tight square as well; is it real, is it a hoax, or maybe it was all just a dream (or entheogens??) – no one knows for sure. Chiron is also noteworthy in his chart by virtue of the fact that it squares Jupiter and his Nodal Axis – it seems he was fated to write about this subject regardless of how contentious the publication of that material was destined to be

But many times Chiron’s “shamanic” vibe isn’t quite so literal in its expression and is instead translated through creative mediums. One of the better examples we see of this is via actor/director Kevin Costner; another Capricorn Sun but with Chiron less than a degree away from it. One of his best-known works was “Dances With Wolves”; a film that won several academy awards with its sensitive and humanizing (albeit romanticized and sentimental) depiction of Native American people; which was pretty much unheard of in the Western genre up until that point in time. Costner’s artistic vision did much to heal damage done by the Hollywood film industry’s depiction of the Native American as “the savage” – unsurprisingly, his Sun/Chiron combo is in a tight square to soft, idyllic, cinematic Neptune. One of his other best-known roles (in Field of Dreams) was that of a clairaudient man Ray Kinsella whose vision (Neptune) led to the healing of the painful wound (Chiron) he carried regarding his relationship with his father (Capricorn Sun) – if that’s not a perfect illustration of his astro, I’m not sure what is.

There is also the astrological case study of Jim Morrison; a Sagittarius with his Sun situated in a very tight square to Chiron in Virgo. Lead singer of legendary band “The Doors”, Jim also served as the group’s primary lyricist and expressed Chiron in Virgo’s energy via the written word – fitting, given Virgo’s literary ties. Chiron began affecting Jim very early on in life and one of the formative experiences he described having was the memory of driving through a Reservation with his family at age 4 and seeing a car accident involving several Native Americans. He was deeply affected by this incident in a spiritual sense and it eventually gave rise to the now-famous “Indians scattered on dawn’s highway bleeding; ghosts crowd the young child’s fragile eggshell mind” lyric along with his adoption of the totemic Lizard King moniker. Jim claimed that it felt as if he were in fact possessed by the wandering souls of the Native Americans he had encountered on that fateful day; perhaps in a sense he was (metaphorically, if not literally). The Lizard symbolism seems eerily fitting if we consider its possible ties to the shamanic concept of soul loss – lizards frequently drop their tails when in danger and to me this seems to align with the premise that a trauma (such as that of a young child witnessing a horrible automobile accident) can result in a part of the soul actually being lost. IMO, it is entirely possible the souls of these individuals stayed with the young Morrison emotionally, psychologically, or perhaps in Spirit in a surrogate capacity and led him to become a sort of poet-shaman in a sense.

There are many interesting examples of the Chiron vibe in action, but I thought these astro-case studies might provide readers with a richer understanding of the word “shamanic” beyond the myopic context of just the (recreational? ritual?) use of psychedelics. Linking the (possibly hallucinogenic-induced) seeing of “visions” with the word “shamanic” is a lot like equating a Ferris Wheel with Disneyland; yes each of the formers are part and parcel of their respective latters, but just because you’re on a Ferris Wheel it doesn’t automatically mean you’re at “The Happiest Place On Earth”. The result is a rather one-dimensional perspective on what Chiron is all about and my hope in continuing this series is to help crack open the doors of perception to shift the way people understand this astrological energy.

08/21/2017