Wednesday, August 31, 2016

September 1, 2016 New Moon Solar Eclipse in Virgo

“Who looks outside, dreams; who looks inside, awakens.” Carl Jung

This first eclipse of September is on September 1. It is a New Moon Solar Eclipse at 9 degrees of Virgo.  The Moon and Sun are conjunct at a New Moon. For a period of time the Moon blocks the rays of the Sun.  The Sun is our consciousness, our ego identity. Perhaps it is hard to be clear about who we are during this period. But since an eclipse has duration of several months, perhaps a solar eclipse gives us an opportunity to unravel some aspects about self that have been hidden from our awareness
So who is affected?  Everyone is affected, especially the mutable signs! Listen up, Gemini, Virgo, Sagittarius and Pisces earthlings! You are the Mutable Quartet of the Zodiac. You make sure we change. 

The  Cardinal or Moveable Signs initiate circumstances and move us along.  The Fixed Signs help keep things in place long enough for good to come of what has been initiated. The Mutable Signs stir things up and bring change so we can adjust, refine, re-start or end something.

The Planetary Line-up

The line-up looks like this: Sun/Moon in Virgo; Mars and Saturn in Sagittarius; and Neptune in Pisces.  Gemini stands alone in the heavens RECEIVING all the pulsations of this mutable bundle of cosmic information. It feels like a dentist drill or jackhammer or yapping dog that won’t stop.  Something is getting our attention and in the process giving us a headache.  The duration of Mars and Saturn interacting with the Sun and Neptune is definitely taxing.  On the one hand we want to maintain our sense of idealism (Sun connecting with Neptune).  We are also striving to let Neptune dissolve the frustrations that we have been dragging around for what seems like all year.  We want to get on with life.  The only way to do that is to focus on someting that we really care about, something we really love, and just keep going one day at a time. That would be the Mars/Saturn part of the delivery.

Virgo is the indicator of discernment and critical analysis.  Virgo strives to get it right (a softer word than perfection!).  Gemini, the other mutable sign ruled by Mercury, has domain over the collection of information but Virgo processes the information and analyses the data.
There is intense strain on Virgo this month for two reasons.

Number One:  Neptune (ruler of Pisces) is opposing the Sun/Moon/Eclipse in Virgo.  Virgo wants to analyze, be rational, and be correct.  Neptune waves a hand from the other side of the sky and says, “Good Luck With That!”  Neptune always reminds us that much is hidden under the barn.  There is often a mysterious agenda that we have to uncover before we can fully understand the data. Number Two:  Mars and Saturn are still holding hands in Sagittarius and they stand in the middle of this arrangement and contribute a big dose of frustration and even anger.  We are moving through fear and loathing.  It will help if we focus on positive action to release our fear and “fed-upness” with life. It’s also helpful to look at what we believe.  Maybe our beliefs are part of any problem we are facing.

Be kind to the Gemini’s you know.  They are receiving all the information and energy of the Eclipse.  Some Gemini’s will communicate about what is going on and we should listen to what they have to say.

If Gemini collects information and communicates about that information, and if Virgo analyzes the data, then what does Sagittarius do?  Sagittarius assigns meaning to the data. Jupiter rules Sagittarius and that is why Sagittarius is connected to the higher mind—the place in us that integrates and makes sense of life.  Sagittarius is a fire sign, so Mars in Sagittarius can make us impatient and mad or it can motivate us. Saturn in Sagittarius pushes us to examine our “higher mind” beliefs.  Saturn can hold on to beliefs and even dip them in concrete and put them on an altar!  The altar called, “It’s My Beliefs or the Highway.”   On the other hand, Saturn in Sagittarius gives us time to mature. Maturity leads to refining our beliefs and giving us a chance to change our circumstances.

Meanwhile, Saturn is in a face-off with Neptune.  Saturn really asks us to find our truth—a truth that is based on reality, not on Neptunian apple pie in the sky. Neptune rules the media, so we are being more vigilant to question if the media is even telling the truth!!

Throw in a little destiny if you like.

The North Node has been transiting through the sign of Virgo. During this Solar Eclipse, the North Node is very close to the Sun and Moon in Virgo. There is a sense of purpose or even “fatedness” going on for many people. Maybe we are getting messages about what direction to take in life, messages about our purpose.  In addition to our everyday life—job, family, health, etc—we are busy downloading some new files and important guidance about our destiny.

One more thing:  A Fascinating Trio in the Heavens keeps us positive and loving in spite of everything!

The Solar Eclipse horoscope holds another fascinating component.  Jupiter (planet of optimism), Mercury (left brain thinking and communication) and Venus (what we value and our drive to be in relationship) are sitting together in the sky.  Mercury and Jupiter are at 28 degrees of Virgo and Venus is 2 degrees of Libra.  This happy trio makes no aspect to other planets.  Repeat.  This trio makes no connection with the Sun and Moon, with Mars and Saturn, with Neptune or Uranus and Pluto.  This little trio sits alone.  It’s like a little room we can go to and get recharged.  We can feel uplifted and think jolly thoughts!  We can have hope!  If you get confused or upset, try to go to this little room of optimist thoughts and comforting relationships. Also, this planetary trio is excellent for research and for writing and publishing.

The September Eclipses set the tone for the next few months. We have time to contemplate what is going on in our ego mind. Do we have beliefs that are circulating on a tape loop that keeps us in a miserable rut? Are we so busy worshiping at our altar of concrete beliefs and memories that we can’t see the rainbows and opportunities offering important changes?  On September 16th we will enter the Full Moon Eclipse.  Maybe by then we will have some new ideas, some new consciousness.  At the Full Moon Eclipse we can begin to anchor any new beliefs into our cellular being.  Remember, every horoscope contains all the signs, because everything is connected.  No one gets a pass.  We all have Gemini, Virgo, Sagittarius and Pisces somewhere in our horoscopes!

Wednesday, June 29, 2016

Astro Tip: Mars goes Direct!!

Mars Stationary Direct
June 29, 2016

Today, Wednesday, June 29, is a day many folks have been waiting for.  Mars begins to move again!!  Planet Mars entered its retrograde phase in April (at 9 degrees of Sagittarius). Now that period is over and Mars moves on at 23 degrees of Scorpio. Mars rules the sign of Aries and also Scorpio.  Individuals who are connected with Mars have got to be relieved.  The combination of Mars being in Scorpio and Mars being close to earth is significant. Symbolically it means exposure, involvement & expression with the energy of Mars.  Attributes like anger, impatience, irritation, “short-fuse” and violence are in our faces. Explosions get our attention in the news nearly every day. It will take a while for the Mars energy to chill out.  If you have felt  pent up for weeks, how can you express your discontent?  It’s time to embrace the positive qualities of Mars:  leadership, sports & athletics, positive assertion, courage, passion and desire. If anger continues to be a problem, seek out counseling or an anger management program. 

In January of this year Mars entered the sign of Scorpio, then it moved into Sagittarius, then it went retrograde in Sagittarius, then back into Scorpio again. Finally this retrograde phase is beginning to shift. Mars will travel through Scorpio and then Sagittarius (again).  Think about it!  Mars has been rolling around a small area of the heavens all year.  Usually Mars spends about 6 weeks in a sign. We get a chance to experience the energetic motivation of Mars in many different costumes. Then, every two years, Mars slows down in its orbit and we experience a long cycle of the planet hanging around a particular neighborhood. The neighborhood of Scorpio and Sagittarius is kind of hot and volatile.  By October Mars will settle into a more normal pattern, starting with its time in the sign of Capricorn. Sane, steady, Capricorn!  Who can wait? Meanwhile, enjoy the stimulation of Mars as it touches our impulses and gives us a more spontaneous involvement with life.

Wednesday, April 20, 2016

Astro Tips for April 2016

April  has already had devastating planetary events with earthquakes, craziness in the political arena; and plenty of frustration for a lot of people.
Gemini, Virgo, Sagittarius and Pisces (the mutable or changeable signs) are in the spotlight.  The energy feels intense, fast moving and transformative, We want to grab hold of something tangible that feels absolutely right! At the same time, there are four retrograde planets so we also feel stymied in our attempts to get where we want to go.  The carrousel is moving so fast we can’t get off to catch the carrousel we really want to be riding. But as we approach the full moon on Friday, April 22, we might want to reflect more on Earth Day than on our own issues.  It’s all connected, right? Read on for tips on how to turn this chaos into creative opportunity.

Astrology is not about cause and effect but it helps us understand the earthly drama. 

Before we talk about the specifics, please keep in mind that astrology is not a cause-effect system.  It is a relational system.  There is a relationship between Saturn currently transiting Sagittarius and the current focus on belief systems. In the collective realm we have political candidates who represent the extremes of the bell-curve in terms of beliefs.  We have those who think we should build walls to keep all foreign elements out and we have one who thinks there is enough for everyone if we just figure out how to distribute our resources.  There are some who really believe the super rich should not have to be taxed.  There is one who believes young people should have tuition free college.  There are several who believe that women are a container for new life, but have no authority over how that new life should happen.  There is no planet causing the extreme display of hubris in the presidential race.  Saturn in Sagittarius, however, suggests hot-headed expression of beliefs.  Sagittarius is the sign we associate with the higher mind, with systems of beliefs, with religions, and with legal systems and the laws therein.  Extremes in belief systems are being aired and sorted out as we move through the political drama. Astrology is a way of understanding the drama.  What is your drama? Where are you expressing your tightly held beliefs?  Are you open to new ways of thinking?

What do we do with four retrograde planets—Mars, Jupiter, Saturn and Pluto?

April currently has four planets retrograde and Mercury will be retrograde on April 28.  A retrograde planet is not moving backwards. It appears to be moving backward because it is moving so slowly. Some of our affairs are just moving very, very slowly. What you thought might take a week, figure much longer.

A note to students of astrology:  Peter Malsin’s book, The Eyes of the Sun (1997), offers some helpful guidelines for understanding retrograde as an energy and I am using some of his insights in this article.

Reflecting—Creating—Intuiting   (read more about this in The Eyes of the Sun)

Basically, these retrograde periods give us a chance for reflection. With four planets orbiting so slowly there is a good chance we will get caught in conflicting thoughts and beliefs represented by these different planetary energies.  We have to sort some things out and take our time doing it.  This period of slowness may also stimulate creative expression. That’s a positive outcome for the big retrograde breezes! As we reflect, we put things together and out pops a new idea, project our unique integration of life knowledge. Great. For other people the retrograde cycles are times of irrational projection.  Peter Malsin suggests that retrograde planets increase the unconscious energy of the planet.  Me versus you, Us versus them.  For example, some of my best friends are immigrants, however…..we don’t have room for anymore foreigners who need to be taken care of.  Listen to the politicians and you will hear a lot of projecting. Other people may use the unconsciousness of the retrograde planet differently:  someone may just channel some intuitive wisdom or power like they are channeling form Divine Source.  Hint! Relax and let your intuition give you some advice, or go for a reading or talk to someone to sort out any confusion.

Mars and Saturn retrograde

Let’s look at Mars and Saturn together because both are currently traveling through the sign of Sagittarius. Mars says hit the peddle, let’s race ahead; Saturn says, hit the brake, not so fast, BE CAREFUL.  Right now, with Mars and Saturn sitting in the same automobile, and both planets retrograde, we are just downright afraid (at least in some area of life). Am I making the right decision?  Will I have enough money?  Should I take a job I don’t really want just to get some income or should I wait?  Should I file for divorce, or should I wait and see what happens next year? On and on. We are worrying and we feel stuck.  This is a natural response to Mars/Saturn retrograde.  Saturn makes us want to “get it right.” We don’t want to make a mistake and yet we are impatient to get on with it.  The invitation is to be with the questions and reflect on the questions. The invitation is to find creative solutions and be patient as well.

Try not to complain. The fixed star, Antares, can strike at any moment.

Mars slowed down at 9 degrees of Sagittarius and that put it right in the line up with the fixed star Antares (9 degrees of Sagittarius).  The Fixed Star, Antares, is associated with reckless behavior, dangerous events and angry situations.  Another way of saying this is Antares and Mars together means some people may suffer greatly during April or experience great tragedy.  We have already seen tragedy from big earthquakes in Japan and Ecuador.  Just this week we had flooding in Texas with hardships for many people and animals. So, if you have a roof over your head,  and if you trip but you don’t fall down and break something, consider yourself lucky.   If you have a serious situation to resolve, try to be patient and do the best you can during this slow moving time.  Our problems are important and some problems need to be resolved. Just remember, it could be worse. Things will be resolved but the timing might be frustrating.

Jupiter retrograde

Jupiter is currently moving slowly (retrograde) at 14 degrees of Virgo. Jupiter is making an irritable aspect to Saturn at 16 degrees of Sagittarius. Both Jupiter and Saturn are in challenging connection with Neptune. No wonder we are all confused and irritable at times.  We want to be optimistic (Jupiter) but Saturn throws a wet blanket on our hopes and Neptune encourages us to “check out” or find some kind of escape from all the worry and diminished dreams. We can reflect on our past patterns regarding escapism as well as our belief systems. Jupiter retrograde invites us to refine our mantras, mottos and unconscious beliefs that either motivate our days or hold us back.

Pluto retrograde and Pluto squaring Uranus might be the foundation of all the trouble.

Pluto is currently retrograde at 17 degrees of Capricorn. Pluto is still in a square configuration with planet Uranus (21 degrees of Aries). So here is the foundation of everything we are going through. These two planets are far away and they always orbit slowly. For half of any year they may be retrograde and even slower in their journeys.  If you have followed astrology during the past few years you will remember that Uranus square Pluto has been in the news a lot.  When Pluto connects with a planet, it intensifies that planet’s energy. Furthermore, Pluto destroys what it touches in order to create something else.  Our entire human race is experiencing intense upheavals.  Old ways of life are being destroyed. Uranus, planet of high technology, is bringing invention after invention to create a new world. Pluto is also the plutocracy, rulership  by the wealthy. The plutocracy is destroying whatever it can to keep all the riches to itself. Uranus is often the rebel or the revolution itself (!) to bring society into a more humanitarian form. In mythology Pluto rules the underworld where riches are stashed away. Uranus is the creative progenitor who is more concerned with birthing something new than fixing dinner or attending to everyday chores.  In addition, the Uranus/Pluto connection seems to correlate with many earth changes.  Earthquakes, tornadoes, hurricanes, severe storms and flooding, and sink holes seem to be more serious and frequent during the past few years.  Finally, the fight over oil has humanity in a mess. War, terrorism, and people displaced from their homeland indicate massive migration, earth shifts, societal changes and struggles. What a mess.

Put it all together—at least say goodbye to “survival of the fittest”

I wish I could put it all together for all of you and for myself. The undertone is Uranus and Pluto in relationship to earth changes: earthquakes, violent weather, migration, holding on and letting go of beliefs, WAR, the struggle to understand we are one. Saturn square Neptune says BE WISE and walk through the Neptunian fog. Trust yourself to know your own truth. Don’t fall into the propaganda pit. Jupiter and Saturn and Neptune say sort through it, DON’T LOSE FAITH.  Be careful and take your time. Be a grown-up! Mars retrograde with all this stew says keep going and don’t give up, and don’t worry if your dreams take a little time.  There are no mistakes, there is just experience. We are here having experiences. Some people have harder experiences than other people do.

If we try to put it all together we might say the human species is struggling to move through some eye of a needle to reach another dimension where life on planet earth is improved by compassion, sharing, fairness and kindnesss. We might release the “survival of the fittest” tape that runs through our unconscious and hopefully find another motto for our existence.  If we try to put it all together we might also say that we chose to be here now.  Maybe we can remember to send love and good will to the innocent survivors of war and brutality. Maybe we can remember to be grateful that we live where we live and we are still relatively safe from much of the planetary horror. 

There is always a gift 

Hopefully you are also receiving gifts of life during this strange period.  In some ways it feels like swimming underwater or hearing through water. We are holding our breath while we move forward and get glimpses of the workings of our own psyche.  Under water, what we hear is what we hear. It is not necessarily what was said.  Remember the gifts of all this slow moving energy:  self reflection and inner dialogue; taking time to sort things out; rejoicing in creative moments that come from the introspection; being alert to projection and intuition (our own and that of others); being aware that we are fortunate if we are not struck down by lightening.

The bottom line: Stay grounded

The one thing that we can hold onto is remembering where we live! We all live on planet EARTH. No matter how much craziness is going on, I offer this little prayer by Wilfred Pelltier and Ted Poole, to help keep us grounded and to reflect on how we might move on.  It is also offered to rejoice in Earth Day.  Farther along, we’ll understand more about our connection with Gaia.

            Wherever you are is home
            And the earth is paradise
            Wherever you set your feet is holy land
            You don’t live off it like a parasite
            You live in it, and it in you,
            Or you don’t survive.
            And that is the only worship of God there is.

                                    (Pelltier & Poole)

Tuesday, March 8, 2016

Astro Tips: Solar Eclipse March 8, 2016

Solar Eclipse:  New Moon at 18 degrees of Pisces
March 8, 2016

This Solar Eclipse guides our path from now to September when the next eclipse occurs.  While this eclipse is mostly visible in Indonesia and the Pacific, the effect of any eclipse is considered widespread. Eclipses signify important events on the personal and collective level. Important events are happening in your life even if your life seem status quo, or ordinary, or even seems calm and insignificant at this time.

When we look at a chart for a person or in this case, an event—the eclipse—we look for planetary configurations.  In other words, is the heavenly picture pretty, interesting, stressful, scary??  This eclipse at 18 degrees of Pisces is very interesting and it is full of inspiration and promise on the one hand, and deception and confusion on the other hand.

The Sun, new Moon, Chiron and South Node sit together in one big Pisces chair and stare boldly across the sky at Jupiter and the North Node in Virgo.   Neptune is sitting close to Mercury and they too are in the sign of Pisces. 

Saturn in Sagittarius sits like a stern arbitrator in between these planets in Pisces and Virgo.  Remember Pisces has domain over all the confusion in the Universe.  Pisces energy brings us to our knees when we can’t figure things out. We just have to let go and surrender to whatever will happen.  Virgo is the energy that tries to sort things out. Virgo brings order to the confusion. Saturn in Sagittarius tells us to get serious about what we believe, to use more discernment in our understanding of what truth is and to grow-up and release our attachment to what we thought was true.

The placement of Chiron in a horoscope signifies a deep wound in some area of a person’s life.  

One of the biggest messages of this eclipse has to do with Chiron joining up with the South Node and with Jupiter holding hands with the North Node in Virgo.  The Nodes are closely connected with our past and future; with our instinctive knowing and our hot headed grasping for our future; and of course, with our karma.  Chiron is an asteroid discovered in the 1970’s.  Astronomers named the asteroid Chiron and astrologers have interpreted the placement of Chiron in the natal horoscope based on the mythology of Chiron.  Chiron is known as the wounded healer.  He was a physician, prophet, and musician who could heal others but not himself.

The last time Chiron was at this degree of Pisces was in March of 1966.  So it seems that this eclipse is picking up on past wounds from that time.  We can stretch the period to include 1961 to 1968, since Chiron was transiting Pisces during these years. 

Chiron represents the deep wound in the soul or any part of the self—physical, mental, emotional, spiritual.  The wound could be from another life, or this lifetime or even the current time right now.  This eclipse encourages us to move away from CHIRON IN PISCES  . . .  away from suffering, confusion, chaos, addiction, attachment to the past or to any kind of attachment to suffering or to the beliefs and words we have been given about suffering.   We are even moving away from what we think we know about craziness!  Who is sane? Who is insane?  We are headed towards new modalities of healing. We are moving across the sky to join Jupiter and the North Node in Virgo.  Words that pop up for this transformation are optimism, confidence, teaching our wisdom and truth, expansion, and learning to be our own guru.  Holding a balance of humility and confidence is important.  If Chiron and Jupiter get too full of themselves, there is inflation followed by deflation! 

This Eclipse period extends until September. It is a time of invitation to say goodbye to something very old. It’s time for a new walkabout.

This Eclipse in Pisces is intertwined with Chiron and the nodes of the Moon. It is an invitation to say goodbye to something old (an experience, a belief or set of beliefs, a habit, a strategy that is no longer useful, a person, an institution, a place, a group, and especially to pains that don’t want to go away).  Release and say so long.  It is time for a new walkabout. Of course there might be pains that are connected with illness that require medical modalities for healing. Maybe we have to release the belief that we are supposed to do it all alone.

Saturn sits in the middle of the sandbox and reminds us of our fears and pessimism. On the other hand, Saturn is our inner “old one” (our elder guide) who holds our personal story and life wisdom.  We can trust Saturn, this inner mature guide, to be realistic and practical and keep us on a good path.  Saturn can cause paralysis if we get too scared.  I believe Saturn wants us to DO something, to keep moving. Don’t get stagnate.  Set a goal, even if that goal is only something to do tomorrow that expresses the new path you seek.

Do one small thing that lights a spark for your new path. No matter what age you are, this eclipse holds the power to help you release something that holds you in a wounded pattern.

For readers who are in their late 40’s and early 50’s, this is one of the biggest Eclipse events you will experience.  Chiron was in Pisces when you were born.  On March 8, Chiron joins with the south node.  You will know your wounds and have opportunities to heal. When Chiron returns to its birth position in a horoscope, we make a decision. We assume we will continue with the same hurt and suffering we have always had (and hence remain possessed with our wound), or we assume we have lived long enough to know how to begin our healing journey.  Sometimes life gives us a gift that begins the healing process.  Sometimes it’s an event, a person, a book, a song, something that gives us new perception and a new map. The healing journey may actually become our dharma:  our life expressing itself with happiness, our life serving self and others, humanity and the divine.  We gather all our tools, we pack our bags and off we go.  No matter what age we are, this eclipse holds the power to help us release what holds us in a wounded pattern and to take a new journey.

There is plenty to say about this eclipse but just two more things. First of all, Pisces is water and the ocean.  Chiron in Pisces says our water is wounded. Pay attention to information about our oceans and our water supply as 2016 unfolds.  Secondly, Neptune (illusion and deception) and Mercury (communicator) are conjunct in Pisces during this eclipse and they are squaring Mars.  Neptune is the unconsciousness of the prevailing trends of the times. Neptune is subliminal advertising or even manipulation of the public through words and energy. Don’t believe everything you hear! Of course you don’t believe everything you hear anyway!

I’m closing with this poem by Portia Nelson.  Many of you will recognize it: 

By Portia Nelson

            I walk down the street.
There is a deep hole in the sidewalk.
I fall in.

I am lost . . . I am hopeless.
It isn’t my fault.
                        It takes forever to find a way out.

                                    I walk down the same street.
                                    There is a deep hole in the sidewalk.
                                    I pretend I don’t see it.
                                    I fall in again.
                                    I can’t believe I’m in the same place.
                                    But it isn’t my fault.
                                    It still takes a long time to get out.

                                    I walk down the same street.
                                    There is a deep hole in the sidewalk
                                    I see it there.
                                    I still fall in . . . it’s a habit
                                    My eyes are open
                                    I know where I am
                                    It is my fault. 
                                    I get out immediately.

                                    I walk down the same street.
                                    There is a deep hole in the sidewalk
                                    I walk around it.

                                    I walk down another street.

Monday, February 22, 2016

Full Moon in Virgo. February 22, 2016

Full Moon in Virgo wants to bring answers and order out of chaos and complexity.

February 21.  It’s raining tonight so we cannot see the big full moon in Virgo.  It will reach perfect fullness at 3 degrees of Virgo on Monday, February 22, around noontime.  Virgo brings up our need to make a “to-do” list so we can get things done and feel good about ourself.   Virgo is the sign that wants to bring answers and order out of chaos and complexity.  Also, this full moon in Virgo is in the company of the Sun, Neptune and Mars.  Remember,  the Sun is always opposing the Moon when the Moon is full. So this time the Sun sits in the sign of Pisces on the same chair with Neptune while the Full Moon in Virgo shines from the other side of the room.  Mars is in-between the three of them.

Neptune is the ruler of Pisces. So the Sun in Pisces likes being with Neptune. Neptune rules the fog and the mist and all is sublime. Neptune dissolves and confuses what it touches.  While it sits with the Sun (representative of the self), Neptune dissolves the ego a bit. Softening the ego’s boundaries makes us more receptive to spiritual vibrations as well as aesthetic and compassionate feelings.  We are drawn to beauty and kindness. Or, we might be drawn to escaping the horrors of this world, because Neptune offers relief from strain and stress.  This could look like vegging in front of the TV, going to a movie, reading, drinking, eating, day- dreaming, or sleeping.  The Full Moon in Virgo tries to keep us focused on the “to-do” list but it is hard when we are breathing in all that Neptunian spaciness. 

Fortunately planet Mars is involved with this Full Moon in Virgo. 

Mars in late Scorpio is in a T-cross and that puts pressure on the Moon to maintain its boundaries in spite of Neptune. Mars is also putting pressure on the Sun and Neptune in Pisces.  Mars gives us energy to get things done and not fall under the spell of Neptunian ether. Maybe your “to-do” will include some activities that are nourishing, enriching or creative rather than forceful.  Mars also sets a tone for irritation and arguing.  People want to be in their Sun/Neptune escape place, so any harsh action from Mars or the wrong words at the wrong time can make us angry or cranky.  With Neptune involved it’s hard to defend yourself from any attack.  Also it’s hard to sort out exactly what is going on.  It might be better to go back to the “to-do” list and let Virgo help us find some order to our lives.  Neptune and the Sun in Pisces are known for compassion, not sock-sorting. We need a balance at the moment.  On the one hand it’s good to relax into the Sun/Neptune space of inspiration and beauty. On the other side, it’s also good to use the Virgo full moon to think about bringing order out of chaos and also to pay more attention to self-care.  Mars will encourage both types of behavior. And Mars might do one more thing. The Sun and Neptune together is sometimes a package of illusion and self- sabotage.  For some of us Mars will give us a situation or put pressure on us to break through our illusions.  This full moon can be a wake up call in some area of your life.

Remember, when the moon is full, it gives us light in the darkness—not just in the backyard, but also light into areas that are more subliminal.

The full moon shines a light into our psyche.  We can resist that light or we can relax and let the softening come and let it bring some truth into our life. I feel sleepy just writing this.  Sun/Neptune/Moon/Rain on the roof.  Still, Mars is sitting there and I believe it is stimulating us to figure things out, to stand up for ourslef, to NOT go to sleep, to fight for what is right for us, to sort through the illusions, the chaos and the complexity.  The full moon encourages you to organize our personal life….to tell the truth about yourself, if you can find it in the Neptune cloud.

Thursday, February 18, 2016

Astro Tips February, 2016: The Impact of Mars in 2016

“Seated in our heart and pervading every cell of our body lies a conscious, intelligent awareness. … outer layers of ourselves surround an inner, divine light of awareness called the Purusa or atman, which illuminates the truth and expresses love and compassion.” The Path of the Yoga Sutras by Nicolai Bachman

For many people the first weeks of 2016 have been filled with irritation, too much noise, loud political banter on TV, maddening upsets, unexpected angry outbursts, and an overload of stress.  Various aspects to Planet Mars may account for some of this internal and external disorder and annoyance.  Mars is major player in our life script this year. Mars offers us so much irritation that we WANT to find our inner light of awareness and serenity.  While everything swirls around us with agitation, interruption and change, we can focus on that part of us that simply sits and breathes.

Welcome to Mars retrograde in 2016. Mars affects our outer world and our inner world.  Do you feel more on edge (inside and outside) than you did in the recent past? 

The Warrior Planet, Mars, makes a prominent appearance during most of 2016. Every two years Mars has a retrograde cycle that causes the planet to spend extra time in one or two signs.  Usually Mars travels through a sign of the Zodiac in about six weeks.  It visits a sign, and then moves on.  We get to experience many difference temperaments of the Mars energy during the year.  However, during the year that Mars goes retrograde, we experience Mars in one or two signs for up to 9 months. That’s a long time to have one archetypal energy hanging around your home, your society, your psyche, or your body and mind.  In the end, we are given a chance to let Mars energy helps us slay our inner dragons (impatience, fears, phobias, revengefulness, anger, explosive rage, repressed sexual drive, obsessive sexual drive to mention a few) so we can better experience our inner core awareness.

For example, if Mars happens to visit your domestic area for 9 months, you will definitely notice it. There could be arguing or irritation on the home front. If you have repressed anger toward your partner, Mars will nag your inner world until you find ways to express your discontent and resolve some issue.

Most of us are familiar with Mars as the male, warrior energy and sexual drive (as in men are from Mars and women are from Venus).  Mars is the sexual desire while Venus is the relational desire. We associate Mars with masculine energy, and a “do it and do it hard,” principle.  If one hour on the treadmill is good, then two hours must be better.  Mars gets the blood pumping.  The ancient Greeks and astrologers of the Renaissance thought Mars brought war, fever and plagues.  In addition Mars signifies survival and desire and under that heading we have competition, the battlefield, winners and losers.  

On the medical front, Mars brings sudden fevers or acute illnesses. Fever, or virus, may come fast, work it way through the system and then dissolve just a quickly.  This is a year to pay attention to your immune and find some sort of meditation practice.  Mars energy is agitating and upsetting to the body’s energy field.  Some individuals may be acutely aware of negative, toxic energy.  Try to clear the energy field a little bit every day.

In 2013-2014 Mars made a long transit through the sign of Libra, whose qualities are justice, balance, harmony, and relationship.  From December 2013 through July 2014, we were confronted with the scales!  How did we handle our relationships?  Maybe some people faced drawn-out legal situations (especially divorces) during 2014. 

Mars makes a long journey through Scorpio and Sagittarius thanks to its retrograde cycle in 2016. Actual retrograde dates are April 18 to June 29.

Now in 2016, Mars will make an extra long journey through Scorpio (water sign) and Sagittarius (fire sign). The retrograde period affects both signs.  In early January this year Mars cruised into Scorpio, a sign that Mars rules.  In March Mars will step into Sagittarius, then turn retrograde in Sagittarius in mid April and go all the way back into Scorpio.  Mars turns direct in late June at 23 degrees of Scorpio. Then it proceeds through Scorpio and on into Sagittarius again and finally completes its long journey in late September.  We will be ready for Mars to settle down in earthy Capricorn by the time we get to October.

Why go into so much detail about Mars?   Answer: Every two years there is some department of your life that really gets hammered.

Assertive Mars energy will hammer some area of your life.  Ideally, you know where Scorpio and Sagittarius are in your horoscope. That will help you know what areas of life are taking center stage this year.  For me, it’s my personality and presenting myself on life’s stage.  I can’t get away from this.  I’m stuck with getting to know myself in relationship to others and the world. Some of this won’t be fun. Not everyone will like me while Mars is hanging around my rising sign!  I will come across with a little more assertion and I might appear impatient or irritable and harsh. I might even have “an attitude.”

Mars retrograde in Scorpio and Sagittarius affects politics and presidential hopefuls.

Mars rules Scorpio so we are receiving a lot of bloody competition in the political arena. Donald Trump was born with Mars on his ascendant. He is in his element right now while Mars is in Scorpio. He has no trouble putting on boxing gloves (made of words) and he knows what to do with that warrior helmet. Bernie Sanders is doing ok with Mars as well. He just keeps saying the same thing over and over again in a strong voice—get rid of super packs, take care of the middle class.  Hillary Clinton, born under the sign of Scorpio, was using Mars well with a strong voice until she was accused of being too “loud” for a woman!  Now Justice Scalia has died and a fierce battle will ensue regarding a new justice on the Supreme Court. This battlefield will be harsh and nasty. It’s interesting that Mars will retrograde in Sagittarius, the sign of the law itself, during this year of partisan fighting over who should appoint a new Justice to the Big Bench!

What can we expect in the Mars retrograde cycle?  Possibilities extend from disharmony to inner awakening in a sacred historical location.

If this long Mars transit occurs in your house of partnership, you can expect a lot of arguing.  All the fixed signs might have to endure relationship “disharmony” (that would be Taurus, Leo, Scorpio and Aquarius).  Likewise the signs of Sagittarius and Gemini will be bickering as partners compete or fight to have their side of the story heard and respected. While Mars goes through Sagittarius some of us will be involved with lawyers.  Others may find themselves on spiritual journeys to sacred areas, since Sagittarius rules faraway places and the higher mind. 

Where’s that Mars?  Notice what gets your attention.

If Mars goes through your career area this year from January to the end of September, be prepared to compete in your job or expect some nasty energy to stir the cubicles.  Lucky people who have a long Mars transit through the money houses!!! Good year to make some extra cash, or get a extra big tax refund, or sell a piece of property.  You see, all kinds of things are possible.  If you don’t know where the signs Scorpio and Sagittarius are in your horoscope, you might want to find out. Knowing where you need to take up your sword, put on your armor or focus on your survival skills could be very helpful before October rolls around.  Remember that craziness is doing the same thing over and over again and not getting the result you want.  We will have ample opportunity to do something over and over again until we do get it right. Do you know what it is? Keeping a journal might help. Notice what theme or themes keep repeating. What is upsetting you? What are you mad about?  Paying attention to these questions will help you navigate the internal battlefield inside yourself that ultimately leads to the way you express your own unique Mars energy.  

If you get overloaded with the heat, intensity and madness (!) of Mars, remind yourself that there is a still place inside that knows who you are without the competition, anger, desire to get even, or to even win the game.  Go sit down and remember who you are.