Weekly Forecast February 17: Sun Enters Pisces, North Node Enters Libra

Detail of the zodiac window in the Chartres Cathedral. Image credit: Vassil, Wikipedia.

Detail of the zodiac window in the Chartres Cathedral. Image credit: Vassil, Wikipedia.

This week brings a couple of significant shifts, with the Sun moving from scientific Aquarius to mystical Pisces. Also, the lunar North Node leaves Scorpio, where it has been since late August 2012, and moves into Libra.

All the signs of the zodiac have a “positive” side and a “negative” side (from the human perspective), but none is as polarized as Pisces. Yet, it is also the sign of unity consciousness, where duality dissolves and the illusion of separateness disappears.

I like to point out that Pisces isn’t the Fish, but the Fishes. There are two of them, tied together and swimming in opposite directions – well, at least that’s the traditional explanation. If you look at the star charts, you’ll see that one fish is swimming sort of up and the other is swimming sort of sideways. Nonetheless, neither can go where it wants, because the other is holding it back.

I like to think of the “directions” not in terms of physical space, but of dimensions. One fish is swimming on the material plane, while the other is in a realm of pure energy – what we sometimes call the spiritual world. The two are not mutually exclusive. There is indeed a means for both fish to move together.

I just finished a terrific article in The Mountain Astrologer by Ray Grasse on how monsters emerge from the collective unconscious. If there ever was a Piscean theme, this has to be it. First of all, monsters come out of the imagination, of which Pisces is the master. One of the less-flattering traits of Pisces is irrational fear, often born of an overactive imagination. Neptune, the modern ruler of Pisces, is described as “foggy.” When we can’t see clearly, our minds make up images, and since not being able to see is scary in itself, the images we create tend toward the terrifying.

Ray goes further and connects these frightful images to aspects between the outer planets – Uranus, Neptune, and Pluto. With each aspect, the collective unconscious opens up, allowing divine energy to flow into the material world. That energy often manifests as new discoveries that change the course of human history, but with each positive manifestation, there is a negative one, whether fictional or real, he writes. He quotes Daniel Defoe (author of Robinson Crusoe), who wrote, “Wherever God erects a house of prayer, the devil builds a chapel.”

Again, this image so beautifully represents the enigma of Pisces. And when you look behind the veil, as Ray does in his article, you come to understand how both angels and demons come from the same energy source.

In traditional astrology, Pisces was ruled by Jupiter, who also rules Sagittarius, associated with the ninth house and religion. But whereas Sagittarius and the ninth house are about organized religion, doctrine, and church hierarchy, Pisces and the twelfth house are more about spirituality and faith. And yet, in true Piscean duality, faith can be positive and uplifting, or it can be the kind of blind faith that results in making an enemy of everyone who believes differently. It’s telling that, as we transition from the Age of Pisces to the Age of Aquarius, religious hatred is a cause for killing each other.

As I was searching for an appropriate image for this post, I came across a photo of a stained glass window in the Chartres Cathedral, which is dedicated to the Virgin Mary. Construction of the current cathedral began in the late 12th century on a site where at least four churches previously had been built, the first in the 4th century. However, it’s likely that the site was sacred to Celts who inhabited the region centuries before the arrival of Christianity. In fact, the name “Chartres” derives from the Carnutes, the local tribe of Gauls. There is a deep well under the church, and we know that the Celts venerated wells and springs as places where earth energy was particularly strong. The Celts believed that wells and springs were guarded by deities or spirits, usually feminine. As Christianity spread through Gaul, churches often were built over sacred sites, which were then dedicated to a saint – often with the same attributes as the original deity.

Most of the famous windows in the Chartres Cathedral, including the zodiac window where the image of Pisces is found, date back to the construction of the current building. In those days, it wasn’t at all inconsistent to portray signs of the zodiac next to images of angels and saints. Today, millions of tourists of all denominations flock to Chartres, many hoping to experience the sacredness of the site. This is the best side of Piscean faith and spirituality.

The Sun enters Pisces on Tuesday at 12:59 p.m. EST. On Sunday (February 23), the Sun conjoins Neptune, and both are near the star Fomalhaut, one of the four Royal Stars of Persia. All of the above about monsters and blind faith notwithstanding, this triple conjunction is favorable for creative vision, especially for artists, writers, and musicians. Inspiration can come through meditation and solitude, and that goes for everyone, not just the creatively gifted. Pay close attention to your dreams, too. If you’ve done dream work, you know that it’s important to keep a journal handy and to write down your dreams as soon as you wake up.

Almost exactly an hour after the Sun enters Pisces, the lunar North Node leaves Scorpio and enters Libra. This is the true node and not the mean node. I don’t want to get too technical here; if you want to know the difference, Molly’s Astrology has an easy to understand explanation. Essentially, the true node and mean node are two ways of calculating the same mathematical point in space. There’s usually not a big difference between the two, but in terms of changing signs, we’re talking about more than a month’s difference. The mean node enters Libra on March 22.

The lunar nodes are significant in that they determine where the eclipses fall. They stay in a sign pair for about a year and a half, and they move backwards through the signs. The North Node in Scorpio has reinforced the Uranus-Pluto square, as well as the mutual reception between Saturn in Scorpio and Pluto in Capricorn. We’ve seen violent political protests, police crackdowns, and government spying on a global scale. Governments increasingly are by the rich and for the rich, with decreased security for the poor and homeless and rising rates of depression and suicide. The strongest influence was felt near the solar eclipses on November 3, when the North Node, retrograde Mercury, the Sun, Moon, and Saturn were all within 6 degrees of one another; and May 9, when the South Node, Sun, Moon, Mercury, and Mars were within 5 degrees.

There are still two eclipses remaining in Scorpio and Taurus: a solar eclipse in Taurus on April 29, and a solar eclipse in Scorpio on October 23. Meanwhile, the eclipses are shifting into Libra and Aries. The strongest influence will be felt when the South Node moves toward conjunction with Uranus in Aries later this year. What that could mean remains to be seen, but it’s fair to say that it will be intense, as Uranus and Pluto head into the last of seven exact squares in March 2015.

In general, the North Node in Libra calls us to place more emphasis on good relationships. That can go for countries as well as individuals. When I think of the South Node in Aries, the image that comes to mind is the “Marlboro man” from the old ads for Marlboro cigarettes. He rides the range alone, a rugged individual who is completely self-reliant and doesn’t need anyone. “Committed relationship” isn’t in his vocabulary, unless you’re talking about his horse. In these turbulent times, we can’t go it alone. We all need our posse. To survive, we need to form communities, although the groups we join will be very different from the traditional idea of community. Compromise is a fine art – as any Pisces will tell you. Whereas Libra finds a balance of give and take, Pisces tends to give and give and give, and when she’s all given out, she disappears in the middle of the night.

Throughout the week, Mercury continues on his retrograde path, providing an opportunity to look back over our work, rethink our plans, and pause for a moment to collect our thoughts.

I leave you with a link that Osk sent for a good interpretation of the Chinese Year of the Wood Horse. I think you’ll enjoy it.

Wishing you all much love and courage,
Aquarius, the sign of astrologyPat

© Pat Paquette, RealAstrologers.com, 2014.