Real Time Astrology: Full Moon / Supermoon in Pisces August 29, 2015

As complex, elastic and delicate as the finest gossamer and just as deceptively strong, the Full Moon at 6 degrees Pisces takes place on Saturday, August 29 at 1:35 P.M. Central Standard Time. This is also a Supermoon (see tag for Supermoon archives), meaning this Full Moon occurs at lunar perigee, or at the point closest to Earth. Very bright, illuminating Full Moon/Supermoon this will be, in more ways than one. The Pisces Full Moon will be aspecting the planets currently dominating the psychosphere; the Full Moon [Read more…]

Real Time Astrology: August 2015

Relatively speaking, August is a fairly benign month in contrast to the first half of the year and the final three months of 2015. I’ll just say it now, I do not like how September and October look. No one likes reading that we’re still in for some astrological intensity, and I don’t especially like writing it either, but that is the way it is for the rest of this year and for the next two years, actually. Growing pains. While not everything is peaches and cream this month, it does offer up many bright spots to be used to our advantage, and to restore and rejuvenate our beleaguered spirits.

First things first, Saturn turned direct in Scorpio on Sunday, August 2. It was not a comfortable feeling, but more and more we will be able to accurately take stock of where we currently stand, and of any gains or losses we may not have previously understood the scope of. Even if the news isn’t good, or as good as what we hoped for, clarity is always a beneficial thing to have.

Jupiter in late Leo moves into a sweet, sweet conjunction to Venus retrograde in Leo and both benefic bodies harshly square Saturn in Scorpio exact from August 3-5, though the orb will continue for some time after. This is quite a big deal; very weird and conflicting, with lots of potential yet with varying outcomes. A Jupiter-Venus conjunction is as sweet an astrological aspect as there is, more so this one in sunny, fun Leo. And yet, both Venus and Jupiter in square aspect to Saturn is austere, cold. People will feel good and want to live it up or celebrate in some way, yet Saturn in Scorpio will challenge us to keep it in check, to not let our fun and games get too much in the way of the hard work necessary now. Jupiter-Saturn is famous for not knowing where to push full steam ahead and where to cut back. Venus-Saturn is famous for creating financial upsets and losses, as well as cooling personal relationships. I wrote previously that I think on an individual level self-confidence will be an issue the first week of August. I also think keeping a close eye both on your personal finances and the global markets is a good idea. Overconfidence in such issues may abound as much as lack of confidence. Not the time for risks or gambles, though it will certainly be appealing! Money matters will be glitchy, yet are only hints of bigger shockwaves to come once August is over. I think we will be looking back at this Venus-Jupiter conjunction in Leo square Saturn in Scorpio for some time. It is rather complicated.

Still, its Leo season, and even the most curmudgeonly of us can find something to smile at.  In addition to the lovely Venus-Jupiter conjunction, Mars enters Leo on Saturday, August 8 at 6:32 P.M. CST. Mars was very stressed and crabby in Cancer in July. It is much happier when in fire signs, and will bring some needed rock and roll pizzazz. Venus retrograde in Leo makes a buzzing, dazzling trine to Uranus in Aries at 20 degrees on Wednesday, August 19, exact at 11:44 A.M. Expect random spontaneity of the good kind with this. Look especially for sudden money opportunities (probably small, OK?) and for opportunities to flirt. Feel free to hit on strangers if the fancy takes you. Also joining the party is the New Moon at 21 degrees Leo on Friday, August 14 (covered in depth here.), followed by a buoyant Sun-Jupiter conjunction at 22 degrees the next day. Even though Jupiter leaves Leo for Virgo on Tuesday, August 11 (read about it here) there is still enough Leo to go around. Fun, shiny, child like and a little silly, the Leo energy this first half of August will bring badly needed humor and remind us that there are still some good times to be had even when the going gets rough. And that’s when we need humor and fun the most. While confidence can be rocky the first week of August, we can find stronger self assurance and confidence boosters mid month.

Mercury will leave Leo and enter Virgo  on Friday, August 7 at 2:15 P.M. Central Standard Time. This shouldn’t dampen the party, though. Mercury has essential dignity in Virgo, the sign it rules. While it has a tendency to be a little nervous and high strung, Mercury in Virgo brings crisp efficiency to communication and thought processes. Mercury will only be in Virgo a short time, entering Libra on Thursday, August 27 at 10:44 A.M., so make the most of Mercury in Virgo while you can. Get your paperwork in order. Send the emails and make the phone calls you’ve been putting off until a better time. Mercury in Virgo is thoroughly analytical, and words and thoughts are better able to accomplish their goals with this influence. Mercury will conjunct Jupiter exact the day Mercury enters Virgo, blending big ideas with the smaller details necessary to pull it off. Mercury moves into an exact opposition to Neptune in Pisces at 8 degrees on Thursday, August 13. For a few days before and after communication go from smooth to very tricky and unclear. The Mercury in Virgo-Neptune in Pisces opposition will also heighten the nervous, anxious side of this Mercury placement. Conversations will not only be foggy but also agitated and nitpicking.

That should straighten out by the time Mercury trines Pluto in Capricorn on Saturday, August 15 at 2:55 P.M. This is a fantastic time to talk about serious matters without dropping too deep or getting too heavy. Whatever is stressing and worrying you can be aired and find useful feedback. Mercury in Virgo opposes Chiron in Pisces at 20 degrees on Thursday, August 20, exact at 4:44 A.M. CST. This time period may very well find the soulful sore spots that Mercury trine Pluto handled with care. Conversations and private inner dialogue alternates between sad and soothing. Mercury in Virgo opposing Chiron in Pisces will noticeably affect health and overall constitution, making people more prone to stress and immune related problems. Be gentle with yourself here! On Wednesday, August 26 Mercury in Virgo makes a nice sextile to Saturn in Scorpio at 28 degrees, exact at 11:07 A.M. I like this. Opportune time to assimilate the last minute Saturn in Scorpio themes, finding those final missing puzzle pieces needed to wrap up Saturn in Scorpio. The tension at the beginning of the month from Saturn stationing direct in Scorpio loses its grip with the sextile to Mercury. Easier to dissect and discuss and plan.

The Sun leaves Leo and enters Virgo on Sunday, August 23 at 5:37 A.M. CST, joining Mercury and Jupiter in the sign. Great time to fix up your home or business affairs, and get your health, diet and body in better shape. Tie up as many loose ends as possible. The turbulence we’re in for again in September will offer less time and energy to get our acts together in our day to day lives. The month ends with an odd, eery Full Moon/Supermoon at 6 Pisces on Saturday, August 29 at 1:35 P.M. CST (covered here.) This Pisces Full Moon marks a shift into the choppy astrological happenings for the rest of the year. As much as you can in August, enjoy some sunlight, get outdoors, mingle and find laughter where you can.

UPDATE: I had quite a few people asking me today about breakups and divorces in their personal circles, and noticed that it coincided with several big-name celebrity (Leo theme) couples (so far: Miranda Lambert & Blake Shelton, Gwen Stefani & Gavin Rossdale, Reba McEntire & Narvel Black stock, who were married for 26 years, the Nicki Minaj thing…) also calling it quits on their relationships. Even the search terms in my Stats included words like “divorce”, “marriage ending”,  etc. I did tell y’all way back in this article that not every relationship would survive this Venus retrograde period squaring Saturn in Scorpio, and that breakdowns, if there were to be any, would be happening about now. Saturn in Scorpio turning direct is getting the ball rolling, for better or worse. Only strong, healthy love can survive these transits!

Saturn in Scorpio Turns Direct: August 1-2, 2015

We’re going to really need to suck it up and tough this out now. Saturn is currently stationing at the 28th degree of Scorpio, turning direct in the very wee hours of Sunday, August 2 at 0:53 A.M. CST. (Or August 1, depending on your time zone.) The incredibly supressive, repressive, frustrating and draining effect of Saturn retrograde that we have been dealing with is currently reaching its head, its breaking point. It will find release in the direct motion of Saturn this weekend. A valve turned on. It would be a mistake, however, to assume release equals relief in this scenario. It is release the way eruptions and earthquakes are release; the way taking the lid off a pressure cooker is release. Some will find themselves left with messes to clean up, as they watch other people pass by seemingly unscathed. Those who do experience relief (and yes, there will be many that do) may still be affected by others close to them taking the hit.

 

Regardless of how this plays out in real time in our lives, whether we find ourselves on higher ground or are reduced to bitter tears, Saturn direct is forcefully propelling us through this final jaunt of the Saturn in Scorpio themes (read original write-up here), over for good (at least for another 28 years) on September 17. From that previous article:

 

“Scorpio is a sign that is primarily concerned with how energy works; it shines x-ray vision on the invisible energetic exchanges that runs like a current throughout nearly every aspect of life. Sex, death, money, family karma and legacies, perceived power and abuse of power, soul level trust and betrayal of trust… anything, really, that forms a bond or contract between us and others are the domain of Scorpio.”

 

There is incredible momentum this August and first half of September, momentum that is working to reshape these energetic entanglements and set us up for a future rooted in our strengthened, well honed individual power, in honest power structures involving  those we share our lives and do business with.  The release of such incredible energy, while it is hellish in the short term, is better for us in the long term. Power plays tend to lose their power once exposed. Dredging up our deepest, darkest fears forces us to question why we fear the things we do, why fear controls us the way it does and why we surrender our personal control and power when faced with such fears. Saturn deals only with reality; with the way things really are in fact, not as we’d like them to be. Saturn direct in Scorpio these next few weeks will state some rude facts about many, many situations, partnerships, and endeavors that are simply not sustainable and not healthy, no matter how it hurts. There isn’t the time left for playing nice.

 

Those who have been doing the hardest work and were really paying attention during the first go-round of Saturn in Scorpio and again with this recent retrograde should be savvy enough to recognize that anything that blows up or ends now is ultimately for the best. Trusting in this process is easier said than done, and some will feel so tired and drained that they may feel like throwing in the towel rather than contend with this energy any longer. But allow the process to do its thing. Learn to let go of the things appearing now to be out of your control. Do not sink your precious energies into fighting to save or fix what is collapsing; instead, learn to stay out of the way and protect yourself.

 

Paths really are being cleared, regardless of whether that is apparent at the moment. Delays and obstacles are signs that the process hasn’t finished its job yet, there is still some work left before progress can move forward. Jumping from the proverbial frying pan into the fire is not a solution to anything. Setting ourselves up for a more energetically sustainable and rewarding future is no small endeavor and simply cannot be rushed. Saturn in Scorpio knows better than to skip steps to get ahead. Respect the wisdom in allowing life to unfold at the correct pace.

 

One upside is that those who have sunk their teeth into Saturn in Scorpio since it first began in October 2012 and not backed down from the challenges it threw can begin to very quickly see their hard earned results.  It is these people who are more likely to experience the relief of Saturn turning direct, along with a strong sense of validation and/or payoff. Clearer pictures will form concerning where the rewards lie- and Saturn always rewards hard work and responsible behavior-  and where no further work is necessary.

 

Saturn direct in Scorpio will very quickly form exact squares to Venus retrograde at 28 degrees Leo (Wednesday, August 5 @ 10:08 A.M. CST) and Jupiter also at 28 degrees Leo (exact Monday, August 3 @ 5:37 A.M. CST). One effect this will have is you will notice people around you who are skipping steps and taking shortcuts to get ahead of the curve they sense is coming; throwing comrades under the bus, shirking responsibility, playing particularly nasty and cruel tricks, passing the buck. Cheating in general will also peak in these last few weeks of Saturn in Scorpio. People will not be playing fair! You might get the feeling that other people are enjoying themselves and having a good time at your expense, as your workload and stress levels go through the roof. You’re not imagining it.

 

And, for a time it may appear to be working for them, superficially at least. The squares to Venus and Jupiter in late Leo will challenge and potentially undermine our egos, our self confidence, our pride in ourselves, all while we witness cheaters of every stripe get the lion’s share of attention and resources. There is a hell of a lot of unfairness in these squares between Saturn in late Scorpio and Venus/Jupiter in late Leo. This is not a good time to gauge how successful and effective you are/have been in life by measuring yourself against other people. You might say that this is never a good idea anyway; but it is simultaneously more tempting and so much unhealthier now. The squares will be distorting self-worth in some rather dark and negative ways. Do not dwell on who is getting ahead and how they’re doing it. Don’t waste time focusing on how they’re getting a better deal than you. If you know you’re getting a raw deal, then your attention should be on extracting yourself from the equation and investing yourself elsewhere. If you see clearly not everyone who appears to be on top is getting there with integrity, why stick around and feed into it? What you perceive as an inability to move forward at the same pace as others is not necessarily a reflection on you personally. Ask yourself if life is trying to show you that your successes lie in a far different direction than the one you’re pursuing or is visible to you.

 

The setbacks and delays, the raw emotions and action out, will seem like they are dragging on forever. In truth, they meet a finite turning point on September 17 as Saturn kisses Scorpio goodbye and reenters Sagittarius (taster here) to stay until December 2017. The Sagittarian fires are lit under our feet once again; we draw a definite close on one chapter of life on Earth and move on to the next. Cut and dried. No one will want to hang around soul-sucking energy drains anymore, be they people or situations. People who are eager to get a move on, once and for all, will be particularly sensitive to this shift and will feel it early. The people who were hit the hardest by Saturn in Scorpio will be the first ones bolting out of the gates when Saturn enters Sagittarius. The old heavy work finished, only the future left to explore. With Saturn stationing direct at 28 degrees Scorpio, we’re actually getting there fast. If you’re left wondering whether the current trudge through Saturn in Scorpio is worth it, Saturn in Sagittarius will answer yes. The sudden freeing up of energy brought by Saturn in Sagittarius will only be made possible by Saturn in Scorpio’s efforts at teaching us respect for energy- given and received- in the first place.

 

We’re almost to the finish line…

 

Real Time Astrology: New Moon in Cancer July 15, 2015

Breathe in deeply, there’s a lot going on with this one. The New Moon at 23 degrees Cancer (the sign the Moon naturally rules) takes place at 8:24 P.M. CST on Wednesday, July 15 and will create a stellium in Cancer. On the same day, Mercury and Mars will move into an exact conjunction at 14 degrees Cancer as well as move into an exact opposition to Pluto retrograde at 14 Capricorn. The New Moon will be in a wide conjunction to the tight Mercury-Mars conjunction and will oppose Pluto as well. Besides the Pluto opposition, the Cancer New Moon will also square Uranus at 20 Aries, bringing back the energy of the Uranus-Pluto squares we thought had ended in March.  The New Moon will also be trine to Saturn retrograde in Scorpio, which would normally be considered harmonious except we will be reeling from the effects of the first exact square the previous evening, between Venus in Leo and Saturn Rx in Scorpio. Even a “harmonious” aspect betrays us here.

There’s a lot of really uncomfortable, high strung energy floating through the ether now, and for better or worse this New Moon in Cancer ties it all together. This is a New Moon where you will definitely want to check where everything is hitting your natal chart. The house the New Moon and Cancer stellium fall in may receive the most activity, but do not ignore where the other bodies are transiting and their aspects as everything will be lit up.

Our survival instincts will be heightened by this Cancer New Moon. Not in a primal, fight-or-flight way (that would be Aries) but by increasing our awareness of the need for self preservation and bulking up defense mechanisms. Our homes, families, money, and emotional lives are in need of careful protection and vigilant defense if we are to survive the changes being thrown at us. Fighting challenges head-on may no longer be working. Cancer is a sign that functions better by sidestepping issues or withdrawing from them altogether. This isn’t necessarily a bad trait to have: there exists those situations in life that cannot be directly resolved and pouring valuable energy into them is a total drain. Withdrawal is a natural response to unfulfilling and untenable situations. It is sometimes a matter of survival.

Financial survival is something that will require our serious attention here. The financial downturns and upsets in global stock markets and national debts were no accidents. They are cracks in the façade, correcting our perceptions of money and valuables coinciding with the austerity of the Venus-Saturn square. Cancer is associated with financial fluctuations, and this New Moon/stellium in the sign along with the Venus-Saturn retrograde in Scorpio square and the reawakening of the Uranus-Pluto squares will see money matters shrink rather than swell. Financial cycles and patterns will become evident. Saturn is the planet most closely associated with karma, Cancer ties the past to the present… financial repercussions experienced now are not flukes, they are the end results of past decisions that were likely made on premises that weren’t entirely logical or healthy or even in our best interests. As the sage author of Ecclesiastes wrote, there is a time to every purpose and there will be other times for big risks and gambles, but not here. This is not a time to remain stagnant but caution and discretion are crucial components for change under this sky.

Emotional self preservation is more necessary, though. We must separate our value and self worth from our money and relationships, especially if we’re currently very deficient in both. This is a good time to address the parallels between current financial, romantic and living situations and emotional needs and patterns. It is more arbitrary than usual now to gauge your worth on external status symbols. It will, however, be easier to see where we are running in circles and spinning our wheels, and easier too to change the plot and move in new directions. We will also be more aware than usual of the amount of compassion and support we receive or lack, and how our more intimate associations are either hurting or helping us. Actions can be taken accordingly.

Not everyone that hurts us actually means to, so some sensitivity and even tenderness in handling others will go a long way. You may have a long list of grudges you feel entitled to carry around and call people out on, but if they were unaware they were hurting you, hashing things out may do more harm than good and it will be you inflicting pain rather than the other way around. Arguments are going to be hard to avoid under a New Moon-Mercury-Mars conjunction in Cancer; it isn’t great for moods in the first place and worse for prudent discussion. Old resentments and hurts will surface from our subconscious to allow us to become conscious of them and sort them out. Preventing new resentments and hurts from forming in the process will require skill and strength. Here again, some temporary withdrawal and circumventing may not be such a bad thing.

Our subconsciouses will be in overdrive (dream activity too), and whatever good that may come from this New Moon in Cancer will be a result of allowing our intuitions (sometimes a separate thing from our emotions; remember that!) to take the driver’s seat for a change. Our perceptions are sharp and strong now and are on our side more than we might normally understand. Gut instincts are not so separate from survival instincts.

Real Time Astrology: July 2015

Frictional, taught, sometimes harrowing… yet, somehow familiar, déjà vu even. Heading into new territory this month will feel strangely like retracing old paths and patterns. Everything new will seem old and vice versa. This month it will be incredibly hard to gauge where exactly we stand, whether we are moving backwards or forwards; at times it will seem as if we are caught in some surreal feedback loop. Does anyone know where we are or what is really going on (in any area of life) anymore?

Most of the month belongs to Cancer, that Moon ruled sign of cycles and fluctuations. The Sun and Mars are already in Cancer and Mercury will join them in the sign on Wednesday July 8. The New Moon at 23 degrees Cancer on Wednesday, July 15 (read it here) will create a stellium in the watery sign. All of the bodies in Cancer will reactivate quite strongly the final Uranus-Pluto square. The square is in ever widening orb, with Pluto at 14 Capricorn and Uranus at 20 Aries. Cancer, however, is fond of the past and often finds itself acting as a conduit to bring the past back into the present. The Uranus-Pluto square we felt freed from will be brought back into the present. Excitement and fear and revolution will be in the air again. Dates when this energy peaks:

– Monday July 6 Sun at 14 degrees Cancer opposes Pluto at 14 degrees Capricorn

– Sunday July 12 Sun at 20 Cancer squares Uranus at 20 Aries

– Wednesday July 15 New Moon at 23 Cancer, Mars and Mercury conjunct at 14 degrees Cancer oppose Pluto in Capricorn

– Saturday July 18 Mercury at 20 Cancer squares Uranus in Aries

– Saturday July 25 Mars at 20 Cancer squares Uranus in Aries

– Sunday July 26 Uranus turns retrograde at 20 degrees Aries (retrograde until December 25)

The dust has begun to settle from years of the Uranus-Pluto squares. We may have allowed ourselves to get a little too comfortable in the aftermath. Which is a mistake. It is only in the aftermath of such events that clear information and images form of what really happened, what hands were really dealt. We’re faced with some reality checks on that front this July. Cancer is a sign that loves history, retaining (hoarding, even) the things left behind in haste or considered useless. It knows the tides change and such things will be useful and important again at some point or another. It clings to the past like no other and yet, as a cardinal sign, initiates change in the waters it is comfortable in. The focused Cancerian energy this July reactivates the Uranus-Pluto square to challenge whether we really changed history or whether we are reliving it. It knows the tides change and what seems groundbreaking today can often be old habits and patterns dressed up in new clothing. There truly is nothing new under the Cancer Sun. All that is happening now – both on personal and global levels- has happened before. The actors change but the plot usually stays the same.

There is wisdom and strength to be derived from this: when we understand that while it may seem we’re heading into unknown territory but are actually being driven by ages-old behaviors, we have more control over the outcome. Many business, political, financial, social, familial cycles have gone on far past their expiration date. The challenge brought by the bodies in Cancer reactivating the Uranus-Pluto square is to let go of the old, familiar and now unhealthy cycles and initiate the ones we understand we will need moving forward but are resisting.

Wonderful sign that Cancer is, we experience its darker sides this July. One of its more infamous traits is its sometimes inability to face tough situations head on, preferring to side step around things instead. It would also prefer to let others do the fighting for it rather than fight its own battles. Being dragged into fights that you didn’t start but are somehow expected to finish is a real possibility this frictional Cancer season. However, side stepping isn’t always a bad maneuver… when faced with challenges you can’t handle head-on, learn how to go at it from other, unexpected angles. Also try to keep some of your cards close to your chest and not give everything away.

Hopefully you found some sort of “ace in the hole” during the magnificent conjunction of Venus and Jupiter in Leo during the last couple weeks of June and the first week of July. Because that tide turns as well and the good vibes dissipate as the conjunction breaks up and Venus in Leo moves into its first exact square to Saturn retrograde in Scorpio on Tuesday, July 14. (Read all the highs and lows of Venus in Leo here.) Emotional austerity is a given with Venus square Saturn, and financial austerity a distinct possibility. Reality checks on love and money are likely to be unpleasant and unwelcomed but ultimately unavoidable. Expect to feel cut off from people and resources during this time. It is a time to be self reliant and make do with what you have while planning ways to prevent the same scenarios from reoccurring down the line.

July is one of those months that will seem to drag on forever. Of course, this too shall pass and the tension begins to release towards the end of the month, as the Cancer energy begins to break up. The Sun enters Leo Wednesday, July 22 followed by Mercury entering Leo on Thursday, July 23. Venus enters Virgo for a very brief stay in the sign on Saturday, July 18; turns retrograde Saturday July 25 and reenters Leo Friday, July 31. This also happens to be the same day as the “Blue Moon” Full Moon at 7 degrees Aquarius (which will also be covered in depth in a later article) which will act as a portal that the raw energy of July can funnel through moving into an even more action packed August.

Happy Birthday America!

I mean that with total love and affection. I love my country and my country men and women. America is a Cancer Sun nation, the sign most closely associated with family, heritage, homeland and patriotism.  Our fundamental values are not by accident. Its a beautiful thing to celebrate, and a beautiful weekend to celebrate on. This is the first time in a few years that Independence Day falls on a Saturday, so that would spell out major party regardless of anything else. The astrology is quite pretty too. The Sun is joined in Cancer by Mars, adding another layer of comfort and excitement brought by the usual backyard barbecues and parties. Mercury in Gemini will be in harmonious trine aspect to the Moon in Aquarius July 3-4 and Moon in Pisces July 5, as well as trine to the wonderful saving grace Venus-Jupiter conjunction in Leo (breaking up but still in orb) and trine Uranus in Aries. Fire, water and air tied together so smoothly spells magic to me. Good times to be had, for sure.

Tension is percolating under the surface of the sparking water, of course. The Sun in Cancer will be in opposition to Pluto in Capricorn, an aspect that is being paralled in the transits to the birth chart of the United States, known as the Sibley chart. (Disclaimer: I know this isn’t the only chart used for the US and is a point of contention for some, but it is the chart I use and I think it holds up perfectly fine. So there’s that.) Have a look:

Sibley natal chart w/ transits

Sibley natal chart w/ transits

The opposition from transiting Pluto in Capricorn to the US’s natal Sun in Cancer was in effect last year and will be in effect for the rest of this year and takes us ever closer to the first Pluto Return for our country, exact in 2022 but the initial birthing pains and final death gasps associated are obviously in effect. (A “Return” is when a planet has travelled completely around a chart and returns to its original position. Pluto is a slow moving planet and so a Pluto Return takes approx. 248 years to complete and thus do not affect people individually. Yet, anyway…) The mundane Sun-Pluto opposition this first week of July will of course feature in our country’s new solar return July 4:

Sibley solar return chart July 4, 2015/2016

Sibley solar return chart July 4, 2015/2016

Notice the solar return Moon at 0 degrees Pisces. A lot of wishful thinking in this country over the next year, a lot of seeing and believing what we want and none of what we don’t. And at times, it will seem like things really are moving in the right direction. The Venus-Jupiter conjunction in Leo features in the solar return chart as well, in the 11th house of social causes. The recent decision by the Supreme Court on gay marriage epitomized this: expanding (Jupiter) the definition of love (Venus) to be more inclusive (11th). The subsequent celebrations were of course done Leo style. No doubt some other social causes will have their day in the sun this solar return cycle as well.

Unfortunately, the good times aren’t exactly how they seem. Yep, the current retrograde of Saturn in Scorpio is in the chart too, and it squares that nice fun Venus-Jupiter conjunction. The saying “For every thing gained, there is something lost” comes to mind with this. A lot of the truly heartbreaking, raw stories will be lost under the momentum of bigger and brighter ones. You better believe that anytime the shiny stories are trotted out in the news that there are some insidious ones being played down and we’re distracted from them. That may read as an overly suspicious thing to say but I stand behind it and believe it will hold up over time.

The news itself will continue to be a focal point, Mercury (communications) conjunct the SR Midheaven as it is. Mercury conjunct the MC is squared by Chiron in Pisces, showing that some rather painful deceptions will be spread via media and soundbites. Per usual, more of the same. Except the Pisces Moon at 0 degrees leaves us a little more vulnerable to buying in to some of the crap, more easily misled. Our ideals (Pisces) played upon.

Both Neptune and Chiron in Pisces are in the SR 6th house, with the Pisces Moon right on the cusp; the house of service, everyday work and especially health. Unfortunately Neptune and Chiron here doesnt look great for the supposed “universal” health care quagmire America is in. I think issues over pharmaceuticals and medical marijuana will become more important. These placements are really just a reflection of how hurt and disillusioned so many already are with the job market and the hoops they have to jump through to secure adequate health care, if they can even secure it at all.

An overhaul (Pluto) of the way we view and support our elected leaders (Sun) will become inevitable as a result of this. Remember though that a lot of misleading or factually inaccurate information will be swimming around, so discretion and critical thinking should be used before emotional responses to broader national issues are acted upon. One thing that should be acted upon and responed to, however, is the continual hits to our fiscsal bottom line. We’re not getting off the hook easy with this one, all those fables of “economic recovery” be damned. America is a natal Pluto in Capricorn country, with Pluto residing in the second house of personal earnings and wealth, and of personal values. The broader mundane transit of Pluto in Capricorn will hit America harder as a result, as we draw closer to our Pluto Return in 2022 and Pluto dances right on the second house cusp. We’re also not too far away from Uranus -rebellion, shockwaves, topsy turvy surprises and upsets- entering Taurus for the first time in 2018, the sign of money, markets, banks and tangibles…

This is hardly an in-depth look at either chart, but I’ll leave it right there. I don’t want to dampen too much the spirit of Independence Day, as this July 4th really is a good time to live it up and be proud of who we are. Enjoying the good times when you can goes a long way towards sustaining you in the harder times. I’m really looking forward to this one. With Mercury so well aspected and with such a nice blend of three of the elements, it is also a ripe time to ask questions and start conversations without ruining the positive vibes. If you can, ask people from the older generations -particularly the Pluto in Cancer generation, we are losing them fast and need their insights the most- what they know about where our country has been and where we are headed. Ask people who have lived through bad times what they know about survival.

Real Time Astrology: Full Moon in Capricorn July 1, 2015

A funky, emotionally soupy mix this one will be… The Full Moon at 9 degrees Capricorn -the sign of the Moon’s fall- takes place on Wednesday, July 1 at 9:20 P.M. CST. There is nothing light or frivolous about a Capricorn Moon; less so with this one opposing Mars which is also in the sign of its fall in moody Cancer, squaring the Moon’s Nodes along the Aries/Libra axis, and closing in on a conjunction to Pluto in Capricorn (the exact Moon-Pluto conjunction is exact in the wee hours the following morning.) There will also be a sextile to Neptune in Pisces that would ordinarily soften the effect, but the other aspects will dominate. This is a Full Moon that would hit like a blunt instrument yet the same day we reach the truly beautiful exact conjunction of Venus and Jupiter at 21 degrees Leo, as well as a magical watery trine between the Sun in Cancer and Neptune in Pisces. The witty, perceptive and razor sharp sextile between Mercury in Gemini and Uranus in Aries is also almost nearly exact (it will be exact the following day.)

The deep, sober Full Moon in Capricorn will feel at odds with the far more buoyant, excitable activity occurring at the same time; like threatening storm clouds gathering on a sunny, halcyon day. I don’t think any two people can experience this Full Moon the same way. Some will be hit as if by a ton of bricks with this one; others will only feel the focused energy as providing more fuel to their fire and drive. People prone to depression and/or anxiety may have to be careful and take precautions to safeguard their wellbeing. Yet, this is hardly an antisocial Moon, so even if it is not a party for everyone (though it definitely still will be for some!) it can still be pretty damn funny and bulk up the fluffier moments with rich sustenance.

The keyword for this Full Moon in Capricorn is consequences. That is really quite an individualized keyword, too. The ruling planet of Capricorn is celestial taskmaster/timekeeper/hardass Saturn, which is currently dragging us back through psychic Scorpio sludge. Saturn retrograde reentered Scorpio June 14, and the Full Moon in Capricorn July 1 will be bringing recent Saturn Rx in Scorpio themes to a head. From an article at the beginning of the year about Capricorn:

“The symbol for Capricorn is usually seen as the Mountain Goat, forever climbing up the difficult steep grade. For what purpose does the goat do this, though? It is usually more accurate to remember that the image for Capricorn was initially the Sea-Goat, not the Mountain Goat. The Sea-Goat had the body of a goat with a tail attached that was a strange mix of serpent and fish. It was a subterranean sea creature that was evolving into a land creature. It swam in deep, murky waters but became able to place its hooves on solid ground and climb upwards and onwards, without losing the psychic memory of where it came from. Everyone has heard that to know where you are going, you have to know where you have been, and this personal evolution is the message of  Capricorn. We take what we have learned with us while we begin forging out a new path in the wilderness.”

This Full Moon in Capricorn illuminates how we have evolved since the first go round of Saturn in Scorpio (October 5, 2012-December 23, 2014), then the brief period of Saturn in Sagittarius (December 23, 2014-June 14, 2015), and now this final home stretch of Saturn retrograde in Scorpio (June 14, 2015-September 17, 2015). If we have not used the lessons set forth for us by Saturn to grow out of old harmful and hurtful patterns (whether to ourselves or others or both), the consequences will be drawn out by this Full Moon. One final swift kick in the ass to set us back on the right path or else. However, many people did receive the signals loud and clear and have been trying their best to do the hard, right thing to the best of their ability. The consequences for hard work and responsibility will be felt here too. In those cases, this Full Moon can show affirmation of being on the right track. The Venus-Jupiter conjunction in Leo, exact early the same day, can bring some long overdue and well deserved recognition of efforts.

Realistically, everyone is a mixture of great and not so great qualities, and we all have things in our past and in our behavior that we are proud of and ashamed of equally. We all need to grow up in some areas of our lives. This Full Moon in Capricorn will highlight the parts of ourselves that still need to mature. It will also highlight the ways in which we have personal authority that deserve respect and recognition. Pay attention to the messages sent out during this Full Moon (overt messages are more likely than subliminal ones) that will let you know how you currently stand.

A need to re-prioritize goals will be strong for many. This is really quite a good time to initiate the change, even if you know it will be a slow going one. The changes in our goals will likely be tied into the ways Saturn (as ruler of Capricorn) retrograde in Scorpio is playing out for you. With Mars, Pluto and the North Node aspecting the Full Moon, the support is there to grab the wheel and steer life in another direction. Happening as it is on the same day as the lovely and lucky Venus-Jupiter conjunction in Leo, change can be a lot less painful now than at other times. Not that it will be easy per se -this is a Moon that will be stressing over every possible “what if?”- but there are definitely opportunities to seize or seek out, and parlay them into something that will pay off later.

The strong aspects coupled with the other astrological activity at the beginning of July will make this Full Moon in Capricorn one of those Moons that affects sleep patterns. It is also definitely going to be manifesting itself in dreams, occurring as it is at nightfall. Dreams will be vivid and may contain snippets of information or clues related to shifts in ambitions.

Saturn Has Returned to Scorpio: Staring Reality & Mortality Down

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“mood swings astrology June”

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“scorpio june2015 anxiety die”

“saturn scorpio 2015 am I going to die?”

A small sampling of some of the search terms that have shown up on my stats page the past week or so. Even more painful ones were left out. Consider that, for the most part, the majority of search engine terms are encrypted and invisible to me. Many people’s inner and outer lives have been changing gears in preparation for the return of Saturn retrograde reentering Scorpio for the final time (until approximately 28 years from now, anyway), and here we are. Saturn rules, among other things: reality, finite chronological time, aging, heavy burdens, responsibility, depression and fears. It is associated with physical death as a reality of life. Scorpio is intimately associated with death in the metaphysical sense, with the deepest life altering changes, with final endings but also with rebuilding from scorched ground. It is an extremist sign in everything it does, abhorring half-measures. Wherever Scorpio goes, it will take you all the way.

Hence, the recent sudden nervousness about any and all health related matters. The very beginning of a major Saturn or Pluto (Scorpio ruling planet) transit, whether it be a transit to a persons natal chart or a mundane transit that affects people in a broader sense (Saturn returning to Scorpio this summer, for example) is always a difficult time;  it is the shape of things to come in an undiluted form. It is a slap in the face more often than not. It is not the whole story, though; the rest of the transit tends to unfold in many different and unexpected ways. With Saturn retrograding on the turbocharged final (anaretic) degree of Scorpio officially as of Sunday, June 14, we see clearer the soul deep life lessons and responsibilities that will be asked of us. The future, however, is still unwritten.

Not everyone will experience Saturn retrograde in Scorpio the same, so there is no reason to think health will be an issue for everyone, or even most, people. For those who have been experiencing recent health issues, it is a possibility that these things will play an integral part of the Saturn Rx in Scorpio experience this summer. The hardest but most necessary requirement here is to maintain perspective about it. Generally, there is more fear and anxiety about health and death matters than is really warranted. People do not die any more during one particular transit than any other. The impact of death can be experienced as substantially more powerful during these times. People can and do develop certain illnesses during particular transits, and yes for some it will be Saturn Rx in Scorpio. Perceptions surrounding health matters tends to be heavily skewed towards the negative, though. Even if it seems quite bad it usually isn’t hopeless.

Strange as it may seem, whatever you are dealing with at this beginning of Saturn Rx in Scorpio isn’t the major storyline. The things experienced now are only catalysts serving to propel the true narrative. Even if you find you are faced now with health and/or mortality issues for yourself or someone you know, you will eventually see it take a secondary role to something much bigger. And it won’t be whatever it is that you’re thinking of.

Coincidentally, I share an experience with one of the anonymous seekers who came across my site. I also found a small lump (in my thigh) right around the time Mercury entered Gemini. Mine was and is painless, though. I expected it to go away and when it didn’t, I asked for advice from someone I know who is a medical professional. By that time, Mercury had gone retrograde, and I took their wait-and-see advice which I shouldn’t have done. Oh well. I am getting it looked at this week. I don’t expect a quick or easy answer. I do expect it to play some pivotal role in my own Saturn in Scorpio story this summer. I’m really and truly not worried about it. I’ll either live or I’ll die; it can only go two ways, right? (Dark humor, people. It’ll help.) Seriously, what I’m actually anticipating are the lessons that are being set out for me. I’ve been through this before, during the first go around with Saturn in Scorpio a few years back. Pluto started squaring my Moon right around the time my Scorpionic solar return had begun. My mom suffered a nearly fatal acute liver failure brought on by regular use of acetaminophen for joint pain, as recommended by her doctors. (I’ve since learned how truly toxic acetaminophen is, and am horrified anytime I see someone take it without thought.) I watched a parent very nearly die right in front of my eyes. She survived, but the subsequent recovery, change in family dynamics, and revelations of family secrets took a toll on me physically and mentally. Those things were the real story; the near death experience was simply the trigger opening up a deep chasm in our lives. At one point I was sure it would be actually be me who wouldn’t survive.

I did survive, obviously. My mom is still here too. Smiles and sense of humors intact. The liver is a Plutonic organ, able to completely regenerate itself. (At one point I was asked if I was willing to be a living donor to my mom; they would’ve taken 90% of my liver out and it would have grown back completely within a week!) That’s really the more crucial Scorpio function anyway: regeneration and transformation. I have seen it up close (and many, many more times than this one example.) I have faith in its process. I would hope others have faith in the process as well.