The Sun has entered Taurus, Mercury is about to retrograde back into Aries, and Mars is at the "anaretic" degree of Taurus. Meanwhile Venus and Saturn are square.
Here's what to watch for:
* As Mercury begins to separate from the Sun it's as though something ill, weak, or invisible will start to gain light, power, health, and visibility again.
* As Mercury comes out of the underworld and emerges as the morning star, we should watch for important announcements, or the emergence of important information that has been in the works but out of sight, hidden, or secretive. This will occur over the next few weeks but begins today as Mercury is already now separating from the Sun in its retrograde.
* As Mercury retrogrades into Aries it will station and spend many days in conjunction with Uranus in Aries. This will emphasize the themes of truth telling, bold or forward-looking visions, heralds or paradigm breaking news or information coming to the surface, revolutions or advancements in technology, a message or messenger appearing in the spotlight, aggressive or forthright voices or people coming forward, preemptive strategies, etc.
* Meanwhile, today Mars is at the last degree of Taurus. Whenever mars is at the last degree of a sign it's not uncommon to see a more dramatic Mars-like quality permeating our lives. Breakthroughs, courage, determination, boldness, muscle, confrontation, aggression, cutting apart or separating, anger, violence or rashness, impulse, etc....all of these themes can be somewhat pronounced today as Mars finally moves out of Taurus.
* As Mars enters Gemini tomorrow it will be in a mutual reception with Mercury in Aries. As Mercury in Aries makes its long conjunction with Uranus, and as it becomes the morning star, it will have a powerful relationship of mutual support with Mars, this means that until about the middle of May the themes of communication, invention, speech, technology, travel, intelligence, writing and writers, teachers, information, and messengers will have a close exchange with the energies of will, power, force, militarism, courage, competition, and conflict. We'll keep our eye on these themes, but don't forget them and remember to guard the words/thoughts and information you take in and put out!
* Last but not least, Venus is perfecting in its square to Saturn...the fact that this is happening AS all of the above is also happening over the next few days paints a very specific picture about communication, confrontation, aggression, and challenges within relationships. Venus and Saturn in a square show us death in love, hardship in relations, blocks in friendship or romance, but also the hard work of diplomacy, the transformation or healing of our hearts in love or friendship, and perhaps the need to communicate or confront various issues with people that will eventually lead to separation or a parting of ways. It's a significant time for relationships, and for the healing of hurts through the power of honest communication. We will keep our eye on all of these transits in the days ahead!
Prayer: Change our minds as you change our hearts. Bless us with courageous new thoughts.
Moon is in late Virgo today, void of course. Meanwhile, the Mercury/Mars conjunction and square to Neptune is nearly exact. Mercury told me to apologize to all of you who either couldn't sleep last night or who have been experiencing any of the following:
* trouble sleeping
* fuzzing thinking and poor judgement
* psychosomatic fears of nervous system diseases
* psychological or emotional breakdowns
* the inability to discern between propaganda and interesting ideas
* feeling like your being used or taken advantage of
* poor boundaries in thought and communication
* saying you'll do something you know you won't
* taking advantage of or being take advantage of
* radical ideas you aren't sure how to implement
* a crisis of faith
* the need for mindfulness
* your head is out of sync with your body somehow
* the eyes hurting or the fear of losing sight or vision
* being told you can't or won't and not being sure if you will or won't
* lies, deceptions, double talk
* too many ideas, too little time
* the curse of no follow through
* sharp, clear, focused mind/thoughts/communication
* transmitting thoughts and words from higher realms
* conversations in dreams, about dreams
* ideological changes, media content disinfo
* wanting to tear someone a new asshole but then admiring their ass instead
* the unhealthy dependence upon substances for the sake of anxiety
* the tendency to change who you are depending on who your with...now it's bothering you...you feel like a victim of something you simply have no control over
Any of these sound familiar?
Well. Here's a few tips for navigating them.
1. Recognize the pattern
2. Stop and say, "why is this happening?" or "What do you want from me, most authentically?"
3. Separate from the pattern for 5 minutes before it has you doing something...think about it, visualize it...there is something hidden within it...can you see it? Once you do, describe it to yourself. Ask it a question. Poke it a bit with some other ideas or opinions than the ones IT has.
4. Don't try to make it go away too quickly...
5. Get curious
6. Notice it in others and your environment
7. Interrupt the compulsions that accompany any of the patterns listed above and instead ask "what does the pattern do if I don't take any actions other than sitting and listening or taking some quiet time with this?"
8. Ask it, "Are you here for yourself, or for my soul? Show me some credentials. Or sing me a song, or do something else."
9. Ask it where it goes when it's not around.
10. Ask what it's afraid of.
Creating conversation with planetary patterns is the quickest way to loosen the grip of the pattern on our consciousness. The grip loosened creates the space for relating, and who of us isn't capable of liking just about anyone as long as there is enough space to relate?
A few more specific predictions:
* A new or revitalized allegiance helps a close friend or sibling (may take a little while but it happens eventually)
* A recent emotional connection in a community or group helps to make a philosophical transition or set of ideas more accessible for a friend, lover, or skeptic
* An important idea or set of ideas is being covertly smuggled into a group, and a group is being covertly smuggled into a set of ideas
* An important technological or academic or political piece of news or style of information is about to become more accessible to more people (this one in particular one I've already seen corroborated by a colleague's forming of a new astrological magazine, but I sense it will be more widespread or national)...again it may take some time
* An upcoming emphasis on cyber attacks, verbal or communicative abuse (perhaps especially in families or as disclosed in larger communities), and ideological violence or conflict, potentially mitigated by strategic alliances, humor, sexuality, and/or emotional tenderness
prayer: changing hearts, changing minds, changing thoughts, changing souls...as the glorious swords spin above us, help us to also remember the peace that passes understanding
The Sun has just entered Gemini, and meanwhile the Moon is in Cancer, conjoined with Venus and both opposing Pluto. What to watch for, and then a brief note on Gemini for today's grand entrance!
What to watch for:
* The Venus/Pluto theme, especially given the Cancer/Cap axis, has a lot to do with nature versus nurture, affection and love versus withholding and hierarchies within groups and families....selfish interest versus the group or tribe's interest...competition within families versus emotional cohesion. Pluto in Capricorn gives us deeply fixated reasons to think of ourselves as separate, superior, higher on the totem pole, or "above" the rest of the pack. At worst it's an outworn alpha male kind of story being challenged by the matriarchal or emotional herd outlook.
A great example of this dynamic's timing can be seen in the new film "Mad Max," which pits a group of escaping women-warriors against a possessive, dictatorial tyrant king in the post apocalyptic outback. The story is essentially about the struggle between masculine and feminine values in a society starved for water and green plant life.
How are the dynamics of our closest relationships or family histories embodying any of these struggles? For example, the parents who work too much or the self obsession of jobs and personal narratives that take us away from group bonding. The class warfare or oneupmanship of income groups and higher degrees or material possessions. Using money to show affection rather than touch or quality time. Distrusting each other's differences or insisting that a kid follow in the same footsteps as his or her parents. Over protectiveness. Clanish exclusivism. Cultural or ethnic prejudice. Favoritism. Subtle hierarchies. Double standards. Family secrets. Maintaining the appearance of "the American dream family" at all costs, despite what's going on below the surface. Doing whatever is right for oneself despite the consequences for the larger group.
All the complications of family dynamics, marriage, intimacy, trust, clan, and tradition are very much in the air right now. The simplest truth is that the foundation has been set for a new vision of family and tribe, one that will carry us into the future if we can allow for the ways of the past to slowly fade and die, resisting the urge to fight fights that we know are futile.
* With three planets in Gemini opposing Saturn in Sagittarius and all square to Neptune in Pisces, it's a unique moment of philosophical, intellectual, and spiritual transformation, debate, dialogue, and synthesis. Many things that were formerly set apart are now coming together, while some things that were put together might be coming apart.
It's a paradigm changing moment, potentially. The naturally dispersive and changeable nature of the mind is being challenged to commit to something new, a vision of something larger that may require more consistency, discipline, and focus.
At the same time, whatever philosophical commitments we're coming to right now have been arrived at because we've honored our own resistance for long enough that the acceptance or surrendering is done from an authentic place of sacrifice. We don't think about this as often as we should when we use the word, "surrender." What is there to surrender if we haven't first strengthened the position of the one surrendering? How can we authentically give if we've not built anything up from which to give? Right now we should feel better about surrendering something of ourselves than at some point in the past...because we know that the choice is ours this time around. We're not doing it from a place of "should" or "ought," but from a place of knowing..."I am the one yielding this time. I am the one changing. I am the one submitting. I am the one who is ready to learn."
This leads us naturally into a conversation about Gemini.
The mind is constantly talked about as something separate from the heart. Get out of your head. Get out of your intellect. Get out of the talk and the ideas. Get into feelings and the heart. Into love.
Too often these words "love" and "heart," whitewash our minds and oversimplify our experiences. From Gemini's point of view it's the sharpness and clarity of perception, of thinking, of attentiveness, of changeability and the speed of recognition, that keeps us present and standing in the pre-cognitive stream of life: the bird calls and sounds and fast twitch slow twitch alternations, the information superhighway of life itself, constantly emerging from the depths of the unconscious. Life is a never ending/never beginning movement of too many things to name or count, and the reward of our interactions are the experiences themselves. Not merely love, or peace, or serenity. Those things too, but not only.
Gemini's insistence on the nervous flow of information is the insistence upon a life lived in communication with what taoists call, "the then thousand things" or "the myriad beings." The open mind is the mind in constant relationship with the names and faces and showings of the world around it. Here belief is just one more bird call. Here truth is just a noise in the bushes. Here plans and goals and commitments are the mating calls or territory markings of large animals in the forest.
If we haven't established this place of mind then we have no chance of committing to something like mindfulness. If our minds aren't sharp and our understanding of truth not based in the nervous and mental ambivalence of eternity, then we aren't alive or alert enough to commit or focus our minds to one path or another, one teacher or another, one guiding star or another.
The double sided nature of Gemini isn't about duality. That's an oversimplification. Rather it's about mental dexterity, which is also an image of our angel nature. The angelic quicksilver of the mind. Each time we resist a dogma in favor of uncertainty. Each time we resist a doctrine in favor of "don't know, and not sure I care," we strengthen our knowledge of the soul, which is fundamental, eternal, and as Heraclitus said, "is undiscovered though explored forever to a depth beyond report."
It's ironically only from this place (at least from Gemini's perspective) that we can give our faith to anything. Ambivalence is the a-temporal origin of faith. It is not the same as doubt. Uncertainty and to some degree indifference, is the bedrock of faith according to Gemini. Because faith is not about certainty. It's about trust without expectation. The without expectation part comes because we've been able to establish the deeper "open mindedness" of Gemini. As though, even if this doesn't work out it's okay, I'm eternal so I'll just go try something different. I won't ever lose my curiosity because curiosity and eternity are first cousins.
More. Gemini's doubt, skepticism, and fierce rationalism, to some extent are defenses against the shadow side of faith, which is certainty and truth (truth with a capital and ultimate T).
Take all of this and apply it to our current t-square and that's why we're looking at being able to give ourselves to something (a belief, philosophy, subject, approach or vision) because we've done the work of establishing "open mindedness" at our roots.
On the other hand, some people might be needing to let go of certainties and ultimate truths for the sake of developing this open mindedness at a deeper level. So it's a bit of a push and pull right now.
Prayer: Help me ground my faith in the endless space of an open mind.
Annnnnnd Mercury is now retrograde! Fitting with the Moon in Gemini, and Mercury in the sign of its rulership today.
So let's take a moment to do our 3x yearly reminder of why Mercury retrograde isn't something to freak out about, and let's try to discern what this particular retrograde cycle is all about...
First a few reminders about mythic Mercury:
* The symbolism of Mercury, Hermes, and the messenger of the gods is inseparable from the pattern of planetary retrogradation. Mercury retrograde isn't about Mercury "going crazy and messing up our lives," it's actually as simple as Mercury being Mercury. The back and forth and back and forth of the retrograde cycle, in general, no matter what planet we're talking about, is in keeping with Mercury's core characteristics: changeability, flightiness, messages, thinking and the mind, ideas, conversation, circuitous routes rather than linear ones, deception, double meanings, quicksilver, androgyny, etc.
* Mercury is similar to the Moon in many regards, and in fact both have associations throughout the history of astrology with the 3rd house and 3rd sign of the zodiac (Gemini). Mercury is sometimes called "the moon of the sun," and generally (like the moon) takes on the characteristics of what it is near, in aspect or dialogue with, etc. This is also an insight about the changeability of the body and the mind, the moods and thoughts of the human animal. As Mercury was considered by traditional astrologers to be an "inferior" planet, it is a planet closer to the earth, or closer to the Moon we might say. There is something common about Mercury...like the way we speak or act or think when we're not in a formal setting..when we're "on the street," so to speak. Mercury retrogrades are periods of time where lots of "common" things become vehicles for uncommon insight or wisdom...like our mailman is starting to deliver divine messages (or maybe divine bills!) rather than just advertisements or bills from the electric and cable companies.
* Mythic Hermes was a bit of a trickster. There is no quicker way to invoke the wrath of the trickster than to try and "plan" for his appearance. Delaying major contracts, purchases, or decisions might be wise during the stations of the retrograde cycle especially (when Mercury isn't moving much), but don't be fooled...Mercury can deceive and dupe us no matter what part of his cycle he's in, all year round. Retrogrades of Mercury (in my opinion) are better suited to attentiveness, double thinking, reflection, and careful revision than lots of brash forward or impulsive movements, but that doesn't mean that Mercury can't suddenly present us with some very special inspirations that we will indeed need to act upon during the retrograde cycle (especially when Mercury turns direct again). In fact, during retrogrades its often the case that Mercury will introduce things through our reflections that we can begin to implement right away...things may change a few more times in any process, and Mercury often symbolizes nothing more than the changing nature of plans and expectations.
A few pieces of advice about Mercury mess ups:
* Slowing down usually helps
* Just because something is messing up or not working or delayed doesn't mean its bad..in fact lots of times something won't work because something else will actually help us a lot more if we slow down and examine what we're doing
* Don't bitch and moan about Mercury retrogrades too much and especially not publicly...it encourages lazy astrological understanding
* Mercury isn't causing anything too happen...think about that as often as you blame Mercury
* Meltdowns and delays are messages, study them rather than facebook posting about how Mercury is screwing you up...share the message rather than just the empty sounding fact of Mercury's retrograde
Where did the saying, "Don't kill the messenger come from?" Maybe it came from Mercury retrogrades!
What does this Mercury retrograde have in store for us?
* This particular retrograde in the sign of Gemini will square Neptune twice more, and also conjoin Mars and the Sun in Gemini as it also loosely opposes Saturn in Sagittarius. This t-square alignment is powerful and emphasizes mutability and the mind.
* We are facing a philosophical transformation. Perhaps a bridging of several modes of thinking is occurring, or perhaps we're trying to reconcile one philosophical or mental tendency versus another. Dispersion versus organization of thought and activity. Mystical receptiveness versus spiritual rules and regulations. Debate and argumentation versus open exchanges and shared wisdom. Altered states of consciousness and transcendent realms versus realms of logic and structured thought. All of these themes are in the astrological air right now.
* The environment of Gemini, including the Sun and Mars is conducive to rapid dispersion and activity, while Saturn retrograde in Sagittarius is comparatively contractive and limiting. Meanwhile, Neptune in Pisces is cold and moist and receptive to both influences. It's as though a highly receptive and relaxed monk is listening carefully to the arguments of two very different philosophers, vying for the victory. The laid back monk sees through both sides of the argument...sees the world both arguments create...maybe tends to get pulled along by one side or the other back and forth...ponders whether or not synthesis is possible or even desirable...might need to consider that the decision isn't just philosophical but also personal and environmental and aesthetic (stylistic).
What if the radical idea of the moment is that the imagination comes before and after "truth?"
Who are we when our ideas are less about objective truth and more about the kind of world we want to create--the style, the images, and experiential qualities? For some this is an intolerable idea. For others its the ticket to spiritual freedom.
There is a temptation in the air right now to sacrifice some essential ingredient of our philosophical character. Sometimes people make us feel like inconsistencies of belief or thought mean that we're doing something wrong or that we're immoral. That's not always true. On the other hand, sometimes we need to call a spade a spade and learn to walk our talk, or at least discern what our walk is compared to our talk and get the two on the same page. Sometimes this fairly demands sacrifices be made.
Other images: martyrs, journalists, thinkers, saints, sages, philosophers, mystics, fuzzy thinkers, deceivers, and die hard believers...
These are some of the core archetypal issues reflected in our retrograde cycle right now.
Prayer: Help us think things through as things think through us...
The New Moon is in Gemini today, just now conjoining Mars in Gemini.
A story about Mars in Gemini.
This morning as I was sitting down to write a horoscope about Mars in Gemini the lawn guys came to mow our lawn and I was immediately overwhelmed by the buzzing of blades and weed whippers all around me. I went downstairs to give the guys payment so I could sit down and focus on my writing but when I got downstairs the glass in our front door was shattered. I stood there for a minute with my mouth open in shock and then went outside and asked the guys if they had seen anything happen, to which they said "no, not a thing." True or not true, my guess was that a rock kicked up from the mower and hit the glass.
Was it a lie or a deception? The crew was Spanish speaking so communication was difficult and it was agitating me because I also didn't want the guys to think I was accusing them of anything...typical for the white guy to blame the latino guys mowing his lawn for breaking his glass door, right? I'm not that guy!
They stood there with me in front of the door and the million pieces of glass, and we all just looked at it. "I don't know," the crew chief said. "Yeah," I said. "Me either."
Then they left, and I started sweeping it up. A million little hairs were blowing in my face in the humid breeze and so I put my hair up. A million little everythings. A million little ants on the pavement. A million pieces of glass. A million hairs. A million things to do and now an hour of my time is GONE.
But then all of a sudden, I realized, "Oh right. Moon conjoining Mars in Gemini this morning...a million pieces of fragmented, sharp glass in the entryway to my home. Right at the threshold. The place where the hard concrete transitions to the carpet, and voila! .. you're home! Covered in sharp bits, too many to count.
Then, I heard a familiar voice in my head, "You might as well enjoy picking up these pieces of glass. You might as well take this moment to practice mindfulness."
So I Thich Nhat Hanh'd that shit and spent an hour cleaning the glass. First I doubled a grocery bag and then filled it with a garbage bag liner. Then I swept up all the big piles (there were no big pieces, just big piles of thousands of small pieces), and carefully dumped them into my bag. I almost thought about putting on shoes but then I realized that my sandals would keep me in the moment...they would keep me focused because I wouldn't want to get glass in them.
My toes and feet were not harmed once.
Then I picked up micro frags by my fingertips, out of all the cracks I could find. Then swept more and more little piles, until my back was covered in sweat, my legs were sore from all the up and down, but my mind was completely empty...as clear as the spring sky.
Then I took the frame and carried it off carefully into the basement. Then I vacuumed. Then I sat down with a client in one of the clearest states of mind I can recall having in recent memory.
Every morning I work out and I have my routines, so it's not like my body was lacking exercise. And every day I write and read and keep quiet space as a priority. So it's not like I'm someone who is "all over the place," and needed some giant lesson in mindfulness. Why did this happen?
I didn't ask the question, out of respect for the glass, until after it was done, and then I got an answer, "So you could write about Mars in Gemini today."
And then a stream of Mars in Gemini insights:
* The power of dispersion to ironically gather and silence and focus
* The danger of razor sharp clarity
* The power of words and ideas to either hold things together or to harm and inhibit others
* Taming the tongue
* The power of ideas to keep people from feeling safe
* The power of ideas to welcome people home again
* The power of communication to accuse or forgive
* Each word counts, each word can kill
* The mind clarifies but it is also fragile
* Mindfulness is the process of gathering the sharp little owies constantly streaming in our heads...carefully collecting them so they don't harm us or the ones we love
* Mindfulness isn't just about taking your time and going more slowly, its about razor sharp, million pieced clarity and attention...so fast and clear that you have to go slow or you'll hurt yourself
* Mindfulness is the fruit of discovering just how "real" and "sharp" thoughts are..how multifaceted, how fluid, and yet how edged...
These and too many more insights to name...like little bits of glass, kept coming and coming...and then a question put to me, "So why did the glass break?"
It was a rhetorical question. There's too many answers to count. smile emoticon
prayer: Help us to hear, feel, and see, the sharpness of our thoughts, words, and ideas...so that we might handle each one, each one and mindfully
The Moon is in Pisces today, applying to conjoin Neptune in Pisces by later this afternoon. Meanwhile, Mars has entered Gemini and is about to oppose Saturn in Sagittarius, while Venus in Cancer is steadily applying to oppose Pluto in Capricorn.
What to watch for:
* Flaking out, dreamy, romantic, escapist, delusional, imaginative, victimy, private, needy, sweet, moods and atmospheres (Moon/Neptune Pisces + Venus in Cancer)
* A family crisis or transformation brewing (Venus in Cancer moving to oppose Pluto in Capricorn)
* Conflicts with authority, my way or the highway, rules and respect, tradition, deviance, trickery, clashes of opinion, philosophy, ideology (Mars in Gemini opposite Saturn in Sagittarius)
* Sacrifice...what to sacrifice, how much or how little, why and for what, and the difference between transformation and losing ourselves (Neptune/Saturn/Mercury t-square)
* Words, language, communication, and learning more skill or tact when we feel angry (Mars in Gemini opp Saturn in Sagittarius)
* Projects, discipline, masculinity, restriction, muscle, mental battles, and focus (Mars opp Saturn)
* Taking our time, slowing down (Mars opp Saturn)
* A crossroads in a relationship because of a conflict of opinions or philosophies (Venus about to square the nodes, as ruler of north node, while Mars in Gemini opposes Saturn in Sagittarius)
* Getting taken advantage of in relationships or offering support to others, a fine line between the two (Venus trine Neptune)
* Selfishness with a history of mental defiance (south node in Aries with Mars in Gemini)
* Sudden, rapid, unexpected success, grandiosity, pride, ego inflation, victory, achievement, luck, and enhanced personal prestige or power (Jupiter in Leo trining Uranus in Aries)
* Technology or communication breakdowns, slow downs, confusions, mess ups, problems, or set backs (Mercury slowing down to station)
* Revising, editing, or negotiating a form of communication, a contract, an agreement (Mercury slowing down to station)
Prayer: Help us to move through this philosophical and communicative challenge slowly, mindfully, and openly...as much as we find our truth, let the truth of those we love find us.
ENJOY READING THESE DAILY FORECASTS?
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.