Mars is just about to enter the sign of Pisces, where it will move from being a house guest of Saturn to be the house guest of Jupiter. This is a significant change because Mars has been in Aquarius since the middle of May! Plus, just as Mars enters Pisces it immediately engages with Jupiter in Sagittarius, it's host, by a square.
Here's what to watch for:
* Mars arrives in Jupiter's sign and what does he want? Well, the God of war wants action, cutting, aggression, violence, hostility, and confrontation. But Mars also wants to advocate, guard, defend, protect, uphold, demonstrate valor and courage, and even die or be wounded in a just battle.
* So, the question becomes, how does Jupiter provide for Mars while Mars is in his feminine realm?
* Jupiter gives faith to the fight.
* Jupiter gives emotional bigness to the hostility.
* Jupiter gives wisdom and hope to the battle.
* Jupiter inspires and expands one's courage and valor.
* Jupiter makes the aggression more dramatic.
* Jupiter makes the cutting more explosive.
* Jupiter incorporates and includes those who are defeated, offering them the choice to join up!
* Jupiter adds arrogance and pride and emotional bigness to an already confrontational situation.
* Jupiter brings gifts through brothers, men, fighters, activists, and advocates.
* Jupiter provides faith for the armor.
* Jupiter brings teachers and wise people into conflicts.
* Jupiter offers teachings, doctrines, and beliefs up for competition in the arena.
* Jupiter offers the armor of faith and the visionary assurance to a martyr.
* Jupiter enlarges or aggrandizes one's sense of complaint or contention.
* Jupiter gives a holiness, or possibly self-righteousness, to the war.
Just as Mars enters Pisces, it immediately squares Jupiter, while Jupiter is in what was traditionally called the superior position. This also means that Mars will hurl a ray backward in the order of signs, strike Jupiter, and then Jupiter will overcome Mars. It's, therefore, sort of like a grudge match, intensifying all of the above themes in the next week. While it's likely that our better angels intervene (Jupiter is, again, in the Superior position here), providing greater wisdom, fortunate outcomes, and tempering the self-righteous and emotionally zealous qualities of this transit, we should be very careful of an upcoming surge of bravado in the days ahead.
On the other hand, this transit may provide a burst of enthusiasm and the return of whatever spiritual or emotional charisma that might have diminished over the Summer months while Mars was plodding back and forth in the loftier and more methodical Saturn-ruled sign of Aquarius.
Prayer: Bless us with the desire to serve, so that all of our actions, all of our enthusiasm, and all of our emotional intensity, might find its home in the forces of your love.
Mercury is moving into a square with Neptune as it stations to turn retrograde this week.
Here's what to watch for:
* The 9th hexagram of the I Ching is sometimes translated as "Passive Restraint," or "Restraint of the Small."
* The image of the hexagram depicts clouds gathering in the west, and the winds of change stirring, but no rain coming.
* The teaching of the hexagram involves the idea that we are helpless before a bigger power that is gathering, or that we cannot force change prior to its appropriate time.
* The teaching of the hexagram also suggests a kind of gentle state of watchfulness, imaged as a sky-watcher, looking upward, seeing the gathering of some future momentum, high above, far removed.
* When ill omens appear in our lives, or when the signs of the times appear darkest, it is as though a powerful force is advancing. We are tempted to react. To take arms. To do something, and fast! And yet, hexagram 9 tells us it is at just this moment that the wisest become very gentle, passive, small, and calm.
* Our curiosity and our calmness are wordless statements: all power, all action, and all results are directed by something I can only pretend to understand.
* What does this moment want from me? How can my actions, my thoughts, and my response find its right place? How might I serve this divine force?
* These aren't grand gestures on the altar. They aren't proud statements read aloud, to be enforced, followed with the measuring sticks of spiritual progress, they are the wordless truths of the watcher. The one who sees the signs of the time, and with a confident soul, becomes small and gentle.
* Hexagram 9 is sometimes called "small nurturance," and it also has the connotation of a small child or a baby's innocence, a doe-like calmness paired with ready ears.
* Do not grope, push, or pull when you sense that change is near, when nearing completion, or else miss the real gift, which is never WHAT is given, but rather the manner in which it is given. Behind that manner, or within, and surrounding it, there is a halo of invisible light, which we can only see if we become small and we remain alert.
* The gift of this vision is the return to right relationship.
* The second line of the 9th hexagram reads, "He allows himself to be drawn into returning. Good fortune."
* We can so easily get lost in an eager or anxious response. But here, if we remain passively restrained, if we find that small nurturance, that modest listening and trust, we are saved from a false start, we are saved from rushing in.
* The darkness we see in the sky above, the world around, becomes an overpowering enemy when we allow it to send us into fight or flight mode. On the other hand, when we remain passive, gentle, and observant. When we stay caring and careful. Curious. Then the same accumulated power we see above is transferred to us within. We become the benefactors of a heavy grace, the inheritors of mysterious mercy.
* In this morning's reading, hexagram 9 changes into hexagram 52...the mountain...an image of stillness, silence, and inactivity.
* In the Bhagavad Gita, Krishna says that the wise see action in inaction and inaction in action.
Prayer: May we be wise, curious, and child-like in the face of gathering clouds, dark omens, confusion, and uncertainty. May we remain cautious, small, and ready during times of great change. Remind us that we are waiting and watching for you, in all things, at all times, so that we might return to the only word of truth that unites us all when we see straight through the gathering storm clouds: Alleluia.
Mars is now moving into an engagement with Jupiter, which will perfect just as Mars moves into Pisces and over the same period of days in which Venus is stationing and turning direct and Mercury is also stationing and turning retrograde in Sagittarius, in a square to Neptune. Wow! It's an intriguing series of transits coming in the next 7 to 10 days as the Moon is also waxing and gaining strength!
What to watch for:
* Impassioned speech, ideas, rhetoric, debate
* Miscommunication and misperception
* Misdirection, cloaking, veiling, or concealing information
* Trying to overpower or stifle the opposition
* Excitement and enthusiasm that moves people to action
* Excitement and enthusiasm unchecked by reason
* Trying to manipulate people's emotions for the sake of a political, social, or financial agenda
* Crusading, visionary, fired up
* The truth, and attempts to avoid it
* Otherworldly communication, altered states of consciousness
* Messages in dreams, omens, myths, metaphors, and symbolic thinking
* * Big risks, big muscle, inflated Mars machismo
* Religious and spiritual inspiration
* Prophets and prophecy
* Magicians, tricksters, and sorcery
* Persuasive speech and the manipulation of people's fears, dreams, hopes, or wishes for the sake of personal gain
* Teachers that inspire and the shadows of teachers
* A call to put beliefs into action
* Self-sacrifice OR the temptation of self-sacrifice as an ego-gratifying exercise
* Giving and supporting something through strength, passion, vigor, and emotional excitement
With Venus turning direct, we are about to turn a corner and start moving forward again, especially in our relationships, and yet with Venus poised to make one final opposition to Uranus at the end of the month, and then another long sojourn through Scorpio to close out the year, and with a long Mercury retrograde to come (toned by the square to Neptune), the pretty picture we're painting in our heads right now could easily be disrupted and challenged in the weeks ahead. Whatever the temptation may be to reinterpret the facts more favorably, or to tell ourselves the stories we prefer to hear, our real motives will not be hidden from sight forever.
On the other hand, where there are open minds and open hearts, along with sincere enthusiasm, and the willingness to seek higher guidance and truth, opportunities for great service and collaboration, especially through the mind, communication, technology, ideas, learning, and writing, is coming!
Right when we are on the brink of a breakthrough, however, we have to be on guard against the temptation of backsliding or taking an easy way out from the work ahead of us...
Prayer: Help us to seek higher association. Help us to find our real allies, and give us real enthusiasm, the kind that serves rather than seeks only for itself.
Mars and Venus are moving through a trine with each other as Venus is nearing the completion of her retrograde period...
What to watch for:
* Resolution and acceptance
* A soft edge
* Agreement with qualification
* Disagreement with elements of compromise
* Agreement upon principles, differences in terms of sorting out the details
* Coming around to an opponent's position or perspective
* Revisiting past conflicts with a new maturity
* Loving that which is outcast, marginalized, or provocative
* An unlikely hero
* In the glow of victory, ignoring present dangers
* Breakthroughs followed by temptations to regress
* Letting someone's poor opinion of you drag you into an unnecessary conflict, defending yourself when you shouldn't, or trying to justify yourself when you shouldn't
* An attempt to rationalize our desires
* Big ideas and the support or compromises necessary for putting them into action
* Sexual or romantic attraction through conversation, ideas, and intelligence
* Bringing poise and grace and beauty to something edgy or subversive or fringe
* The difference between an ally and an opportunity
This transit will come back, eventually, in the new year, when Venus and Jupiter conjoin in Sagittarius, in a trine to Mars in Aries....don't be surprised if the connections you are making right now, which may seem light, social, and friendly, become MUCH more intense, with much heavier consequences, in January!
Prayer: Give us the intelligence to find our real friends, and guide us to the company of your saints!
In just three days, Jupiter will enter it's home sign of Sagittarius to stay for the next year.
Here is what to watch for:
* For the past year, you can imagine that Jupiter has been like a guest in the home of Mars. So, Jupiter has been relying on Mars to fulfill its needs, requests, and desires.
* Jupiter's natural desires are for expansion, wisdom, abundance, faith, hope, growth, breadth of vision, good fortune, blessings, bigness, grandiosity, etc.
* Mars has therefore been addressing Jupiter's needs, attempting to help Jupiter through his own natural significations: cutting, war, violence, depth, intensity, desire, competition, bravery, battle, severing, driving, muscle, confrontation, risk, incisiveness, etc.
* It's therefore been a growth by confrontation kind of year. A wisdom through confrontation kind of year. A development of faith through encounters with battle, with severing, with risk, intensity, and courage kind of year.
* Now, Jupiter is moving signs and entering its own home sign. Cue sigh of relief. Jupiter its own sign is like you or me coming back into our own home. When you're in your own home, you no longer have to rely on your host because you ARE the host. You may have to address the needs of the other wanderers (planets) moving through your home, but in terms of your own needs, you're set. You know where the refrigerator is, where your clothes and toothbrush are, and which pillow is your favorite to sleep with!
* Jupiter in its own sign, in other words, can more effectively meet its own needs and expresses itself more comfortably. Jupiter in Sagittarius is, therefore, a year where growth, the bigness or broadness of vision, abundance, faith, and optimism, are coming in more direct and immediate ways. The desire is satisfied more easily and more directly.
* The last time Jupiter was in Sagittarius it was between the fall of 2006 and the fall of 2007. Go back to that time in your life and you may get a feeling for the excitement and enthusiasm that is returning!
* Remember, of course, Jupiter's placement in your natal chart is highly specific and so there could still be some challenges. It's not as though Jupiter is ONLY going to indicate positive, exciting things in the year ahead. For example, Jupiter in the 4th house sometimes brings new babies or a new home, but it can also signify karmic justice (think Zeus' thunderbolts) related to family karma. The big difference is that Jupiter is acting far more like himself in Sagittarius than he can from Scorpio, which, generally speaking, given Jupiter's status as the greater benefic, is exciting!
* It's a great time to learn or to develop a new course of study, to expand one's mind or one's horizons through traveling or through the development of one's spiritual life. It's also a time where a sense of faith, hope, and passion may return, or you may feel a renewed sense of optimism bubbling up within you.
* Over the next few days, I will make a few more videos, covering the same topic in greater depth. So consider this just a preview!
Prayer: Renew our faith and our hope, broaden our minds as you open our hearts, and give us the opportunity to serve your loving mission in the world with even greater enthusiasm!
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Adam Elenbaas is a professional astrologer and the founder of the Nightlight Astrology School. Adam holds an MA and MFA in English and Creative Writing and is one of the founding writers at RealitySandwich. To learn more about Adam, click here.