What a week of astrological transits we have in front of us...
Here's what to watch for:
* Over the next week + the Sun will oppose Jupiter, square Pluto, and conjoin Uranus.
* Over the next week Saturn will station and turn retrograde
* In a little over a week Venus will station and turn direct
* In the next week Venus will exactly square Saturn and then station and slowly turn direct while Saturn is doing the same thing, making for a kind of ongoing standoff between the two planets all month.
* It's first quarter Moon today.
* In the next week Mercury will station and turn retrograde.
* In the next week we'll have a full moon activating the t-square.
WHAAAA! That's a lot to take in. Here are some big themes to watch for...
* As the Sun enters the t-square you may feel inspired, bold, courageous, and determined. Taking actions, entering the fray, and pushing your agenda forward may come naturally. However, whatever the Sun's agenda might represent, it's sure to be met with challenges from people who make the rules, bend the rules, or simply don't like your energy, charisma, or gusto. Challenges to our authority and determination are always a call to reflect a little more before we react, strategize rather than bulldoze our way through, and to check in and understand our own personal motivations.
* In a mundane sense, we are likely to see heads of state, leaders, people in power, or people with the power to judge or decide things entering into a time of turmoil, change, and challenge. It's a time where we might see heroes emerging to challenge the unfairness or corruption of something, as well as the continued attempts by people in power to bully and dominate as a way of advancing their agendas. More on this in the days to come!
* Venus and Saturn stationing and entering into a month long stand-off, alongside of a Mercury retrograde, has the look and feel of a diplomatic or relational standoff. In both our personal lives and the political world, watch as we encounter all manner of obstructions to harmony. But for a more detailed analysis of Venus/Saturn check out yesterday's horoscope here (http://www.nightlightastrology.com/…/a-long-venussaturn-squ…).
* Mercury's upcoming retrograde will also eventually conclude with Mercury stationing to turn direct in a conjunction with Uranus as the morning star. Mercury is about to delve into the underworld only to eventually emerge bright, strong, and with a groundbreaking announcement, piece of information, idea, epiphany, invention, or breakthrough to share with you and with the world. In the meantime, as Mercury stations in the next week we should expect to see the typical Mercury station themes: breakdowns, blips, and Freudian slips, delays, distortions, and misunderstandings, specifically in communication or travel or transit or information, or synchronistic events, conversations, communication, information and ideas. Mercury's station to retrograde also brings the beginning of an inner period of revision, recollection, and transformation, usually in terms of our mind, thoughts, and patterns of communication or organization, etc.
* Today the first quarter Moon points to a moment of tension, creative conflict, and energetic breakthrough. First quarter Moons usually give us a very good sense of what themes and issues, what people and conversations, which themes, struggles, lessons, and joys will be pronounced for the rest of the cycle, or at least through the Full Moon. This is true for us personally as well as in relationship to things happening in the collective.
Prayer: Teach us to feel the weight and wisdom of history, but let us stay as ethereal as the cycles of the planets and their ever-dancing lights.
It's first quarter Moon today and the Sun is approaching a conjunction with Pluto. This morning you might be able to feel something stirring deep within, or you might be noticing that the holiday period is starting to slough off its skin and the new year finally feels like its emerging.
Hexagram 24 of the I Ching is called "Return." The image shows a footprint walking away from a town to return to its home, or to return from where it came. The decision talks about both the concepts of return and revival, and the fact that during the solstices there was a time for solemn sacrifice before embarking "out" again from the center or the home. In fact, the ancient kings would close the passes on the day of the winter solstice in order to prevent people from traveling or pursuing their business. Everything reached a standstill, and then (as the image of the hexagram shows) thunder would begin to rumble within the earth, signalling that the yang energy was returning and that it was time to move outward and upward again. Things would begin to grow and develop again.
The reason I mention this hexagram is because we are at the first quarter Moon of the first lunar cycle after the winter solstice. And we are just a few days away from a Sun/Pluto conjunction and an approaching t-square between the Sun, Jupiter, and Uranus. Translation: we are just days away from a surge of yang energy that is very much like the first thunderous stirrings of the new cycle pictured in the 24th hexagram of the I Ching. Today's first quarter Moon along with the powerful death/rebirth motif of the approaching Sun/Pluto conjunction points to a critical turning point.
Sometimes turning points pertain to external or outer events, or other people in our lives, and sometimes they point to an inner state, or a turn in our consciousness. Often both. So watch and listen for the rumblings of the turning point today as the Moon in Aries squares both the Sun and Pluto and the Sun edges closer to its powerful conjunction with the lord of death and rebirth.
Prayer: Help us to feel the thunder rumbling within the earth. Help us to recognize the call of the turning point.
The 1st quarter Moon is in Gemini today. Here's a quick list of teachings that first quarter moons bring to mind, and this Moon in particular:
* 1st quarter Moons reflect the transition from "more darkness" to " more light" on the surface of the Moon. They therefore represent one of the cardinal pivot points of each monthly lunar cycle. As such they often signify events that move something from darkness to light, from weakness to strength, from unseen to visible, from wondering to known, from building momentum to having the momentum, etc.
* 1st quarter Moons are often about an unexpected or rapid series of events, decisions, that take over....think of Spring and the way the plants and flowers suddenly all start waking up...you get up in the morning and boom, life is springing up...1st quarter Moons have a similar "rousing/awakening" quality.
* Today's 1st quarter Moon is ruled by Mercury, whereas the Sun is ruled by Jupiter. Interestingly Mercury and Jupiter are in a tight opposition at this time. Jupiter and Mercury are natural opposites, as they rule signs opposite one another in the zodiac. Whereas Jupiter symbolizes undying faith, Mercury says "the facts are the facts sir, you can't live forever." As Jupiter is in Mercury's sign, and Mercury is in Jupiter sign, but both are debilitated, there is a sense of our faith overriding the facts about something, or vice versa. On the one hand this might indicate that we feel powerless in the face of some particular facts, on the other hand it might mean that we're only comfortable with facts that suit us and our view of something. Still there is the possibility that "despite the facts or information," something shall be successful or we shall remain in denial about something. What we do with information, and the lengths to which we go to make information say what we want it to say rather than remaining objective is very much at play right now.
* Today's 1st quarter Moon might therefore have something to do with coming to terms with some increasingly clear set of facts or circumstances. On the other hand it might have something to do with the gaining of knowledge or insight that clears away misunderstandings or delusions while simultaneously clarifying a sense of future direction or purpose. On the other hand, the more negative or challenging symbolism might involve attempts to complicate, distort, or bend perceptions in order to delay or avoid undesirable outcomes, or in order to manipulate a situation.
Prayer: Help us to see the truth and help us to resist the urge to bend or twist information for selfish purposes...may our path forward be clear and simple, modest and correct
The Moon is in Taurus today nearing first quarter and moving toward a trine with Jupiter and an opposition with Mars by this evening.
Here is a list of what to watch for this Valentine's day:
* As the Moon moves closer to an opposition with Mars today might unfortunately involve the subjects of over heated discussions or debates, power struggles and stubbornness, agitation, violence, and aggressiveness, control, inflammation, and hostility...or at the very least there may be a distinct struggle between peace keeping or harmonizing versus agitating or catalyzing. Watch also for women's health issues (Moon), surgeries or the need for intervention (Mars), or general physical or emotional health challenges (Moon/Mars).
* The Moon/Mars opposition is also potentially a symbol for sexual passion. An unstoppable force meets an immovable object. The way in which sexual intimacy can become a healthy or unhealthy power struggle, competition, or fight. The same transit sometimes involves the subjects of sexual crimes or abuse.
* Moon/Mars may also involve some amount of family drama, perhaps particularly focusing on issues with our mothers.
All of this is somewhat alleviated this evening by the Moon's simultaneous trine to Jupiter this evening, which may lighten the mood, making all of the above themes easier to manage, or more playful, passionate, fun, or expansive and positive generally. Or, the subjects of faith, goodness, morality, ethics, justice, or beliefs may somehow play a role in an impassioned conversation or encounter that takes place today, especially this evening. Jupiter might also involve some element of romantic or spiritual or philosophical conquest into the Mars/Moon opposition, making whatever tensions occur into a much larger or more charged issue. Jupiter and Mars are sextile which might symbolize a military crusader or an activist or someone who believes the fight or standoff is about something much bigger. The question might become..."is it really this big of a deal?" Is it worth disturbing or disrupting something peaceful? Look for laughter, playfulness, and humor to help ease the inflation of issues.
Today's transit also brings to mind the general division between people who may enjoy peace, control, and stability compared to people who enjoy intensity, combativeness, and dramatic depth.
Why do we resent happiness, peace, and beauty? Why are we so quick to think that these qualities are merely inauthentic? On the other hand why do we ostracize or dislike or attempt to silence those qualities we find disturbing and disruptive, or that force us to examine things that exist beneath the surface appearance? Good question for Valentine's day...a holiday so frequently accused of being "superficial" and yet one that undeniably involves sweetness, peace, and love as well.
Prayer: On this day of love, help our love to be deep without being purposefully disturbing, authentic without coercion or hostility, passionate without unnecessary competition or control
The Moon is in Capricorn today, applying to square the Sun in Libra as we cross the 1st quarter threshold of our new cycle.
With the Moon in the sign of her detriment today, and the Sun in the sign of his fall, this 1st quarter Moon looks somewhat daunting. Let's look at essential dignities of the lights today with an eye for what these debilities might signify and what we can learn from them.
When the Sun is in Libra two challenges tend to appear. One is the tendency toward vanity, superficiality, or the lack of substantive personal identity or volition, and two is the tendency to become overly passive, pleasing, or deferential. One tends toward falseness and the other to indecision, ambivalence, or victimization. Though there is an entire archetypal world we could discuss related to Libra, these archetypal challenges might be the ones most intimately related to the classic debility of the Sun in the sign of the scales. At least, this has been my observation with regard to the archetypal meaning of the Sun's fall in Libra.
Similarly, when the Moon is in Capricorn certain challenges appear. One is the tendency toward hardness, coldness, or emotional and environmental rigidity, and the second is the tendency to starve or be starved, to exhaust or be exhausted, or to operate from a place of ruthless necessity or deprivation without knowing when to stop, rest, or relax.
When we put these two debilities together right now we might get something like superficiality, vanity, and lack of substance within cold/hard and rigid environments, work places, or within the home or family. We might get the overall feeling that something about where we come from, or where we live or call home, is unpleasing or lacking in substance. Alternatively, we might feel superficially judged, misunderstood, or placated by people in the work place or some common or familiar environment.
On the other hand there might be a temptation right now to defer to someone else for the fear of losing an important position or place in the pecking order. We might fear that having our own moral or ethical standpoints will get us kicked out or exiled, or we might feel the desire to say anything or be anyone in order to make it through some challenging situation.
The tendency toward selfish or Machiavellian political/social moves right now is strong...so we should be careful to examine our motivations and think carefully through each of our decisions. A compromise in our personal ethics could easily create big problems right now, and it might be easy to feel strong armed into a position that simply represents "what the other wants to hear."
Meanwhile, the potential to work through various difficulties by means of intelligent diplomacy and simple reality checks is the upside of this transit, and it should be considered alongside these traditional debilitation signatures.
Prayer: Help us to examine our falseness and our fears, and return us to the images of God that live in our souls.
Just past our first quarter Moon in Virgo today, and now Mercury retrograde, Mars, and the Sun are all squaring Neptune in Pisces while opposing Saturn in Sagittarius. Meanwhile, Venus has just cleared her square to Uranus and Jupiter is approaching his trine to Uranus.
What to watch for:
* Mental/emotional/nervous agitation
* Mental/emotional overwhelm
* Trouble sleeping
* Unclear or foggy communications, perceptions
* The desire to empty or completely clear the mind
* An urge for simplicity or detoxification
* Organizing, fixing, clearing
* A philosophical change of course
* A feeling of not knowing where you are or what you believe, a crisis of faith
* A serious approach to study
* Studying or learning something from the past
* Sudden attraction, dangerous emotional impulses
* A spiritual/philosophical transformation
* Start/stop with ideas and conversations or dialogues
* A decision to make but many question marks and unknowns makes the decision feel out of sync
* A decision to change health/diet or lifestyle in a specific way
Throughout this retrograde we're changing our minds about something, over and over again, until maybe we've run out of ideas and find ourselves settling comfortably into the unknown. Everything is not what it seems, and if there is a master plan we don't know, maybe we don't care.
In the meantime, the agitation of the mind...the tendency for the mind to be a place of fragmentation, violence, and impatience, is at the forefront of the planetary conversation. Mercury is backing up into the sun, and Mars is getting swallowed by the Sun, while all three planets square Neptune... creating a kind of mental/rational vortex. Even the most rational among us might be feeling overwhelmed by the magic of life, or by powerful surges of unexplained emotions or ideas.
There's nothing we can do to speed the process of discovery and philosophical transformation taking place right now so we might as well slow down and take our time. It's an especially good time to use those dead patches in our day to literally just sit and do nothing. Watching what thoughts and ideas naturally pop up if we step into the empty spaces rather than constantly filling them with more "stuff."
Prayer: May the egos of our minds be calmed...thoughts turned toward the cosmic seas.
The first quarter Moon is in Leo today, about to conjoin Jupiter before moving into a trine with Uranus and then square to Mars and Mercury.
What to watch for:
* Pride, arrogance, jealousy, showmanship (Jupiter in Leo)
* Family pride, arrogance, jealousy, showmanship (Moon conj Jupiter in Leo)
* Social class, royalty, wealth, assets, inheritance (Moon/Jupiter in Leo)
* Bigness of the heart, hearth, and home (Moon/Jupiter in Leo)
* Warmth, generosity, sunshine, strength of personality and ego (Moon/Jupiter in Leo)
* Confidence, courage, positivity, character, and faith (Moon/Jupiter in Leo)
* Revising, revisiting, or turning inward to examine systems of knowledge, faith, or belief in all areas of life (Saturn retrograde in Sagittarius)
* Unexpected success, invention, transformation, rebellion, and self expression or creativity (Moon/Jupiter both moving toward trine with Uranus)
* Slow/steady/difficult laboring of thoughts, plans, and organization of the future (Mars/Mercury in Taurus)
* Recent contentious conversations starting to die down (Mercury separating from Mars)...now there might be more patience, peace, understanding
* A powerful phase of transformation from one era to another is underway, but it's slow going at the beginning (Pluto just turned retrograde but still moving incredibly slow)
* Keeping the environment safe, stable, secure, and peaceful...controlled harmony (Sun in Taurus)
* Fascination with multiple streams of information, multi-tasking, and keeping busy (Venus in Gemini)
* Unexpected, highly creative or rebellious statements or communications or flirtations (Venus sextile Uranus)
As the first quarter Moon has just come through it's a great day to start putting plans into action. The moon has the momentum now to help us make headway in a good direction. Beware of laziness. This moon cycle might feel a little chilled out compared to last, but each day "success in small things," as the IChing says!
Prayer: Success in small things. Slowly but surely.
First quarter Moon in Leo today. A crisis of action, as old man Rudhyar used to say.
What to watch for:
* Money and pride (Taurus/Leo Sun/Moon)
* Simplicity and power (Taurus/Leo)
* A nice environment ruined by selfish attention seeker (Taurus/Leo)
* Bling and the subject of living within our means (Taurus/Leo)
* Generosity versus selfishness (Taurus/Leo)
* Expressiveness versus conservation of energy (Taurus/Leo)
* Indulgence and luxury (Taurus/Leo)
* Loyalty and inflexibility (Taurus/Leo)
How do we use our energy and resources? Our time and money? There is a willfulness in the air today for our first quarter moon. It's about priorities and personalities. Staking claims and establishing our needs and desires. Sticking with something and seeing it through, even to the bitter end. Using our charisma, charm, and passion, and giving generously, in order to get through something, even when we may feel like conserving our energy or consolidating our resources...even when we might feel like something SHOULD be happening differently.
Gratitude is also a big theme today, though it might run more in the way of feeling like we're owed it rather than actually feeling it. Loyalty is also a big theme, as is entitlement and ownership.
Image: after the cowardly lion found his heart he was approached by several companies seeking investment help
Image: after the cowardly lion found his heart he patented a chocolate candy out of it and started selling it for major profits around the world
Image: after the cowardly lion found his heart he put it on ebay
Image: after the cowardly lion found his heart he carefully organized his finances and considered his options...he was patient and not too impulsive
What do we do with the tasty treat of our hearts and souls? How do we use it? What does holy selfishness mean? Questions like these and more as plans are being made and courses of action being charted for the future.
Prayer: Help us to have the nerve, and help us to be resourceful, patient, and easy with ourselves
The Moon is in Cancer today, applying to trine Neptune as it squares the nodal axis later this afternoon. Then it will move into the Pluto/Uranus square by opposing Pluto and squaring Uranus. A busy day of aspects.
What to watch for:
* Contentious discussions about values, plans, resources, goals, finances, and the future (Mars/Mercury conj in Taurus)
* Inflamed or aggressive communication dynamics (Mars/Mercury conj in Taurus)
* Financial hardship (Mars in Taurus)
* Hard work pays off (Mars in Taurus)
* Slow/dense pace makes ambitions feel frustrated (Mars/Mercury in Taurus)
* Flirtacious communication (Venus in Gemini)
* Teasing, options, vacillating, two options or choices, information as sexual stimulation (Venus in Gemini)
* The attraction to talking, chatting, visiting, researching, reading, and writing (Venus in Gemini)
* The gift of words (Venus in Gemini)
* Youthful, sensual, flighty, hard to pin down (Venus in Gemini)
* Lush, sensual, slow, secure, relaxed, trusting (Sun in Taurus)
* Springtime desires, fertility, and abudnance (Sun in Taurus)
* Controlling, hoarding, greedy, lustful, selfish (Sun in Taurus)
* Living beyond our means, or comfortably within? (Sun in Taurus)
* Revisiting, revising, or reflecting upon our beliefs, philosophical assumptions, or the meaning of our lives and our purpose (Saturn retrograde in Sagittarius)
* Returning confidence, faith, optimism, excitement, pride, dignity, and loyalty (Jupiter finally picking up speed in Leo, direct)
* Forging ahead in new directions, dynamic new intentions and creative plans, but also plans that require major growth, maturity, and structural transformation (Uranus in Aries square to Pluto in Capricorn)
* Looking at home, family, what nourishes us, and choices related to the establishment of these values in more regular/everyday ways (Moon in Cancer today, square the nodes of the Moon)
* Compassion, empathy, sweetness, imagination, daydreams, and emotional neediness (Moon in Cancer trine Neptune in Pisces today)
* Facing something from the past, growing up, family/home/domestic/inner/private/ancestral karma, eruptions from the unconscious, and dynamic moments of change and transformation related to all of the above, especially through relationships (Moon opposite Pluto and square to Uranus)
Over the next few days not only will the Uranus/Pluto square and the eclipse points from last month all be triggered, but then we'll be moving into our first quarter square of the moon cycle. Simply put: whatever came up last month, whatever the "big stuff" is for you right now, an important "next step" or next crisis of action and response is going to come through over the weekend. Things should be clarifying themselves, but the big work is still structural overhauls and the long/slow transformation from one era to another. It's challenging because the transformation or the future toward which we are moving is more or less clear, and yet the pace of Taurus season demands that we relax and ease through each and every step. This moon cycle is offering us rest and stabilization...a bit like the first hour of the morning..when the animal inside of us is stretching, waking, and loosening up into the new day. But even beyond this phase of recovery, we're also gathering resources and stabilizing ourselves for a concerted effort that will take place over the summer months. This strange push and pull can make critical moments like the ones we're looking at over the next 3 days feel anticlimactic. As the IChing says "Little things: good fortune."
Prayer: Help us to take stock, gather, and focus on the small things we can do to aid in the larger changes that are as of yet still beyond our control.
image courtesy of creative commons:
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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.