Tag Archives: Ceres

Weekly Forecast June 22: Mercury Square Neptune, Mars Enters Cancer

Secret Garden. © Gretchen Friedrich, 2015.

Secret Garden. © Gretchen Friedrich, 2015.

When tragedies like last week’s shooting take place, the first instinct of an astrologer is to cast a chart and try to identify the correlating aspects.

I did, but not immediately. My first reaction was to get depressed, or maybe it was a sad sense of resignation. We’ve known all along that it wasn’t a question of whether another shooting spree would take place, but when. That this one took place in a church added to the shock and disbelief. We think of churches as a sanctuary. Then, I don’t suppose it’s any more “sacred” than a school, a sorority house, or a movie theater, and certainly not more than one’s home. We tend not to include the latter in our definition of mass shooting, so they don’t make sensational headlines, even though Continue reading

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Weekly Forecast April 20: Sun Enters Taurus, Mars Trine Pluto

Composite by Osk Ingad Alden, 2015.

Composite by Osk Ingad Alden, 2015.

This week we get to slow down and smell the roses, and there’s even some levity to compensate for the unrelenting stress we’ve been under.

We’re still in the wake of Saturday’s New Moon when the Sun enters Taurus early Monday morning. Many of us are starting new ventures or entering a new phase in our lives, while still contending with unfinished business from previous cycles. The slower pace this week will help us catch up, and we’ll also have some space to confirm new priorities and formulate a plan for wrapping up old projects. The planning part is important, because it simply isn’t possible to complete the entire “to-do” list, and certainly not in a few days or a few weeks. Continue reading

Weekly Forecast February 3: Mercury Retrograde, Ceres Enters Scorpio

Artist's conception of Ceres. Image credit: ESA/ATG medialab.

Artist’s conception of Ceres. Image credit: ESA/ATG medialab.

Anyone feeling a little fuzzy headed? I’m having trouble writing a coherent sentence, and I’m definitely slow.

As the week begins, Mercury is slowing down to station retrograde on Thursday, just a degree shy of Neptune in Pisces. Traffic moves slowly, whether it’s cars on the road, bytes on the Internet, or electrical impulses in your brain.

Then, slowing down can be a good thing.

In astrology, Neptune is the planet of sleep and dreams, and Mercury is the planet of communications, including communications between the conscious and the unconscious. One of the times when we can be aware of that connection is between wakefulness and sleep and vice versa – the hypnagoic and hypnopompic states of consciousness. Often, we get ideas, visions, and solutions to problems in that fleeting space between worlds. It’s not hard to understand how mythological Mercury (Greek Hermes) was the only god who could come and go freely in and out of the underworld – and swiftly, by virtue of his winged sandals.

We don’t always remember our dreams, but when we do, it’s often in that in-between place. That’s why it’s important to record dreams as soon as you wake up. Dreams can contain important symbols that help us understand what our unconscious is processing, and that knowledge can be powerful. When we’re awake, the conscious mind takes over, and most of us lose access to that power. With Mercury stationed so close to Neptune in his own sign of Pisces, the “signal” is stronger. The flip side is that it might be hard to stay awake during the day, and concentrating could be a real challenge. However, if you start to doze, you’re in that in-between state and have even more opportunities for creative ideas and visions to surface into your conscious mind. I’ve also experienced long-distance contact with friends in that space.

Mercury will be retrograde until February 28, the last day of the month, meaning that most of February will be slow going. It’s a good time for reviewing, revising, rewriting – anything that requires going back over something. Although he returns to Aquarius, Mercury stations direct the day before the New Moon in Pisces, so we might get messages similar to the kind that come up this week. The Messenger returns to Pisces on March 17 and conjoins Neptune on March 22.

On Monday, Ceres enters Scorpio, and she’ll be in a trine with Mercury on February 12 and a conjunction with the lunar North Node on February 11. She won’t quite reach a trine with Neptune before turning retrograde on February 27, and she’ll return to Libra in late March. In the meantime, it’s worth looking at what this could mean. I’m still observing the role of Ceres in mundane astrology, as I don’t think we’re sure yet what her influence might be. She has been prominent in charts for environmental disasters and events relating to the food supply, which is what we might expect, give the role of Ceres in classical mythology as a Mother Earth figure associated with crops and vegetation in general. As you may recall, Demeter, the Greek equivalent of Roman Ceres, lost her daughter Persephone to Hades/Pluto, who kept her in the underworld for several months out of the year. During that time, Demeter was so depressed that nothing grew.

In modern astrology, Pluto rules Scorpio, sign of death and regeneration. However, the goddess Ceres also was associated with cycles of death and rebirth, and so we might look for evidence that dwarf planet Ceres has something to do with cycles of nature and other cyclical occurrences, such as the birth, rise, and fall of civilizations. Although Ceres couldn’t go into the underworld to get her daughter – only Mercury could do that – she was the only deity who could negotiate with Pluto (essentially her son-in-law) to get what she wanted. That gives Ceres a special relationship with Scorpio. During the negotiation period, she was mad as hell. It’s typical for people coming out of depression and grief to get angry before they can heal. Anger, by the way, is the function of Mars, ancient ruler of Scorpio and co-ruler with Pluto in modern astrology. Educated people laugh at how our ancient ancestors thought disasters were the work of angry gods, but I contend that it wasn’t entirely superstition; they were just personifying invisible energies that otherwise defied description. Astrology is a way to “see” and measure these energies.

As for depression, it’s growing worldwide at an alarming rate. When you’re depressed, you can barely do what needs to be done in a day, with no time or energy left over to protest abuse of government power and other societal injustices. I believe this is one of the reasons that more people aren’t out in the streets protesting the never-ending giveaways to the rich and cuts for the poor and middle class – a repeating cycle, incidentally. I don’t know what it will take for people to start getting angry enough to take back their government. Shortages of food and water and sometimes cited as the trigger. Because we don’t know enough about how Ceres functions in mundane astrology, it’s hard to predict if and when this might happen. However, we’ll want to monitor her position in the charts.

Ceres will return to Scorpio in August and will remain there until October. However, it will be interesting to observe world events in February and March to look for correlations. This can be tricky, because there are so many planetary energies in play at any given time that it’s difficult to distinguish which might be the main signatures for an event. I’ll be watching for possible correlations to her conjunction with the lunar North Node on February 11, plus or minus a few days.

A couple of other interesting facts about dwarf planet Ceres: Recently she was discovered to have water. Scientists were caught off guard, as they didn’t expect the bodies in the asteroid belt to contain water. What they think they’ve found is what they would have expected of a comet. There also is some speculation that Ceres might have had different origins than the other asteroids and that she and Pluto might be more related than anyone thought.

Those are the only major astrological events this week, but we’re still within the influence period of a strong cardinal T-square as Jupiter moves toward an exact square with Uranus later this month. With Mercury’s turn retrograde, we might expect to see headlines that refer back to events and situations last August. One event that comes immediately to mind is the chemical attack in Syria on August 21. Supposed proof that the attack was launched by the troops of President Bashar al-Assad is now acknowledged to be less certain, and yet conservatives are still calling for a military strike. Talk about déjà vu.

Much love and courage to all,
Aquarius, the sign of astrologyPat

© Pat Paquette, RealAstrologers.com, 2013.

Weekly Forecast November 25: Mercury Conjunct Saturn, Sun Trine Uranus

Late fall sun. © Pat Paquette, 2013.

Late fall sun. © Pat Paquette, 2013.

Oh, for a little boredom.

What I really mean by “boredom” is “nothing to do.” That may sound like hell for a Millennial, but it’s music to the ears of a worn-out Boomer. We’ve been in high-gear seemingly forever, running from one crisis to another and rushing from one project to the next without a break. At times, we’ve been spinning our wheels, frustrated that we’ve expended so much energy without anything to show for it.

I concede that I have a higher-than-average need for solitude and time to reflect, but most of us need a lot more downtime than we’re getting. In some cases, the lack of downtime is due to overbooking or chasing after things we really don’t need, in the process losing what truly would sustain us. Never is that more apparent than at this time of year, when we’re under so much pressure to shop ’til we drop and show our love for each other with vast quantities of consumer goods.

Astrologically, we have another week in which we can wind down a bit if we choose. Like last week, there aren’t any hugely significant planetary aspects. This will come as a relief to anyone still struggling with the fallout from events during the past two months, if not the past year.

Moreover, the Moon is in the last quarter, a natural time to finish what’s on our plate and prepare for a new cycle. The New Moon on December 2 is a good time to start new projects, but for the rest of the coming week, R&R is the order of the day. In the United States, many people will have a four-day break, with Thanksgiving and the following day off. Even those who have to work on Friday probably will have a lighter load.

Monday begins with a conjunction of Mercury and Saturn, the third and final contact of Mercury’s most-recent retrograde cycle. Three-part aspects typically unfold as an issue that needs attention, a crisis period, and final resolution. The first conjunction occurred on October 8. The second occurred on October 29, during the high-stress period between eclipses. The conjunction on Monday occurs with Mercury direct and the eclipses receding into the past. Circumstances have changed a lot in one month. Mercury represents rational thinking, while Saturn symbolizes structure, commitment, and durability. This is about finding workable, long-term answers to difficult problems and challenges. Solutions that eluded you before are possible now.

Mercury advances to sextile Venus on Wednesday and trine Jupiter on Thursday (late Wednesday in western time zones). As the week goes on, you could find more than one elegant solution to a problem. The only caution is that you remain fairly discipline and conservative. For example, if you suddenly get a big chunk of money, resist the temptation to blow it all on Black Friday sales.

Venus and Jupiter are opposed on Thursday, which is Thanksgiving in the United States. This is the classic over-indulgence aspect. On one hand, you could be presented with a feast that is unusually abundant and spectacular. On the other, the temptation to over-do it will be hard to resist. Likewise, Friday shopping could get totally out of control. Retailers likely will be happy, but do keep your receipts in case you go overboard and later wonder what on earth you were thinking. Impulse buying is going to be even more rampant given the trine between the Sun and Uranus on Saturday.

The Sun-Uranus trine could occur with some other surprises and sudden changes. Congress is adjourned until December 9, so Washington will be fairly quiet. That said, the Obamacare fiasco hasn’t settled down yet. There could be unexpected developments there. Or, related events could involve foreign heads of state. Impulsive decisions and sudden turn-arounds are the signature of this aspect, and I would expect them to be more positive than negative.

Throughout the week, Ceres makes a T-square with Uranus and Pluto. Astrologers are still collecting data on Ceres in individual and mundane charts, but there does seem to be a solid connection between Ceres transits and environmental issues. I’ll be watching next week’s headlines for related events. If you happen to come upon a story you think is relevant, please post a comment or drop me a quick note.

It’s also worth mentioning that Comet ISON reaches perihelion on Thanksgiving. I haven’t seen it yet, because I don’t have a clear view of the eastern horizon before dawn. I’ve read that you can see it without a telescope, provided there isn’t much light pollution where you live. On Monday and Tuesday, it will be near the conjunction of Mercury and Saturn. After perihelion, ISON will disappear into the sun’s glare. If it doesn’t break up, it will re-emerge in December and could be easier to see. So far, it doesn’t seem that this visitor has carried a “message,” but perhaps that will change if and when it becomes more visible.

Sunday (December 1) could feel like somewhat of a letdown, either because you’re shopped out or partied too hard for three days. In addition to head and body aches, some people feel a bit depressed the day after a party. Take it easy in the morning and drink lots of water. Aspects in the evening are more conducive to going out and having one last bit of fun before returning to a fast-paced work week.

In the meantime, I’ll be grateful to have another relatively quiet week in which to reflect, regroup, and test my recipe for a dairy and gluten-free pumpkin pie.

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

© Pat Paquette, RealAstrologers.com, 2013.

Weekly Forecast September 10: New Moon in Virgo, Mercury Enters Libra

The pathway up. © Pat Paquette, 2012.

Relationships are in the transformation stage, no doubt about it. We’ve seen it coming, as Saturn approaches the final degree of Libra and is finally ready to move on.

Many of us are going to be finally ready to move on, too. Like, final finally. We’ve been ready. We’ve tried. But something has held us back for one more lesson, one more bit of convincing, and one last hope that maybe we were missing something, the golden bit of light that will wake us up to what’s really going so that we can remain more comfortably in an uncomfortable place. After all, we’re told that we can’t change others, only ourselves. So many of us have been busily working at changing ourselves, like burning the candle at both ends into the wee hours preparing for the final exam.

Four stories came to me last week about difficult relationships, how they’d been ended once or twice already only to be resurrected for another go. Until the Full Moon in Pisces on August 31, they were all doing pretty well, in a place that was more compassionate, accepting, and serene. And all four people, within a few days last week, experienced an unexpected event with their partners that threw them for a loop. One of them, a woman who after a year of struggling finally came to grips with her partner’s Asperger’s, was on her way home from work and saw him going out to dinner with another woman.

I wrote in last week’s forecast that the Full Moon would continue to unfold right up to Friday. Did it ever, and how. Last Tuesday, I came across Michael Lutin’s article on the Full Moon in Pisces, and it suddenly all made sense. We’re heading into the final three degrees of Saturn in Libra. Right. Mikey commented that something drastic will take place. I assume he’s talking about Saturn’s entry in Scorpio, which will place him in mutual reception with Pluto. Those of us who have been up all night studying will go through the final exam and emerge ready to transform. I say “ready to transform” rather than “transformed,” because I believe the process will continue. Evolution doesn’t stop.

I know, it sounds kind of scary, but we’ve known for some time that this wasn’t going to be a period of snuggling into our comfort zones. We’re out of the nest, learning to fly. This is what it feels like.

I’m going to spend the rest of the forecast looking at Saturday’s New Moon in Virgo, which begins unfolding on Monday and will continue to be felt through the weekend. The bigger event, of course, is the Uranus-Pluto square, which will be exact on September 18, the same day Pluto turns direct. Uranus says, “Evolution isn’t fast enough. Mutate!”

New Moon in Virgo

Click on image to enlarge

This New Moon is ruled by Mercury, who conjoins the Sun on Monday and then swiftly moves through the end of Virgo to enter Libra on Sunday. In my world, Virgo is co-ruled by Ceres, who is moving through the end of Gemini – in a near perfect square with Mercury and the New Moon and a perfect trine with Saturn.

Mercury in his own sign of Virgo wants to pay attention to the details – who did what to whom, when, who owes whom money, and so forth. This is fine for professional relationships, and directly addressing details may be just the solution for moving through issues with co-workers and supervisors. If this is your situation, make sure you have all your ducks in a row and that your arguments are based on sound logic. There’s still room for compromise (especially the following week, with Mercury in Libra), but concessions will be made on logic, not feelings.

Ceres has a different agenda. Feelings count, and so does the physical and emotional well-being of everyone involved. There may be a pecking order, but if someone lower down the food chain has the goods, they stand on equal footing with the higher-ups. Her method of compromise is more like Libra: you get half, I get half. If your relationship is ending, this may be a practical matter, and it’s where I see the possibility of a split that, while not necessarily amicable, at least will be civil. I think this is also where we may be able to release some karma, especially if you’ve got ties with someone over several incarnations.

Interestingly, in the New Moon chart, Juno is on the lunar North Node at 29 degrees Scorpio. In Roman mythology, Juno was the wife of Jupiter, the king of the gods. The Greek equivalents are Zeus and Hera. Greek mythology unfortunately stripped Hera of her power by making her the angry and vengeful wife of a philanderer. Her actual history is much older (like Nemesis, about whom I wrote last week). The evolution of the goddess might as well be a story about how male and female energies became imbalanced in the world. We’re on the threshold of righting the balance. In the last degree of Scorpio, Juno is drawing upon all of her power before entering Sagittarius, the sign ruled by Jupiter.

Lastly, Venus trines Uranus (the aspect is exact on Thursday). Here’s the big surprise, an event that causes a mutation of thought that leads to a transformation in your external world. This event may concern love or money, two domains ruled by Venus. Because the trine is harmonious, I’m hopeful that this will be a happy surprise. Goddess knows we’ve had enough of the other kind.

Mikey suggested reading the Robert Frost poem, commonly referred to as “The Road Less Travelled.” The actual title is “The Road Not Taken.” Think about that for a minute. Frost was writing about one road, but the collective perception was the opposite. There’s a lot to contemplate in the few weeks left of Saturn in Libra. Come to think of it, this is a perfect poem for Libra. Who else could stand so long at a fork in the road, trying to decide which way to go?

Regardless of which road you take, it’s going to be bumpy for the next several weeks. To help you on your way, I just set up the StarGuide Fall forecast, which is now available. I’ve taken some pre-orders already, so if you order now, expect it to take 3-4 days for delivery. I also highly recommend that if you want your report by the first day of fall (September 22) that you order this week. This is my most popular report, and I’m always swamped at the beginning of the new season.

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

Weekly Forecast April 15: Mercury Enters Aries, New Moon in Taurus

Music to travel by. © Pat Paquette, 2012.

Get ready to hit the ground running this week, because life is suddenly moving again.

Mars, the action planet, went direct on Friday. Although I anticipated some major shifting last week, I also knew that certain activities might come to a grinding halt until early this week, when Mercury enters Aries, the sign Mars rules. For me, however, the bombs began dropping Tuesday night, and by Friday, life was taking a turn that, while not entirely unexpected (there are advantages to being an astrologer), was surprising nonetheless.

Developments this week could turn us on our heads yet again. It feels like the ground beneath our feet is swaying back and forth, and remaining steady is difficult, if not impossible. At least, that’s what it looks like from where I’m standing.

We start off on Monday with Mercury blasting into Aries. Mercury has been in squishy Pisces, where logic dissolves and you never quite know whether you’re tapped into extraordinary intuition or are wandering in the mists of la-la land. We’ll have more clarity with Mercury in Aries, and fortunately, Mars direct in Virgo ought to help control the impulse to do something, anything, as long as you feel like you’re moving. The urge will only get stronger as the Moon enters Aries on Wednesday, and Mercury conjoins Uranus on Sunday. By the way, this is the third and final conjunction with Uranus in this cycle, and it likely will play out as events related to the big shift that began for you in the summer of 2010.

All of the above notwithstanding, we should all feel more grounded once the Sun enters earthy Taurus on Thursday, followed quickly by the New Moon on Saturday. Venus, the ruler of this New Moon, is close to the degree at which she’ll transit the Sun on June 5, and she’s at the exact degree of the lunar eclipse a day earlier. I have to think we’ll notice a significant shift in the two weeks following this New Moon. Indeed, life already seems to be rearranging itself in preparation for what’s to come. Still, Venus is unaspected in this New Moon chart, so we’re not entirely ready yet for what’s ahead.

The Sun and Moon do make a lovely sextile/trine with Neptune and Mars. The latter is especially powerful, given that Mars has just turned direct. It’s as though he’s being urged to get up and get moving! The Sun and Moon also are conjunct Ceres, who gets my vote as co-ruler of Virgo. Some astrologers think her symbolism is closer to Taurus. I have to disagree, but there’s no doubt that her earthiness is compatible with Taurus, the most solidly manifested of all the earth signs (thus the stubbornness we often encounter in our Taurus friends).

Chart for New Moon in Taurus

Click on image to enlarge

Even the conflicting aspects in this New Moon chart have something conciliatory about them. Vesta in Aries is directly opposite retrograde Saturn in Libra. The ancients associated Vesta the Capricorn, which is Saturn’s home sign. The conflicts we have with others usually have something to do with our conflicts within ourselves. And it’s impossible not to be conflicted about something. Humans are complex organisms, and not every part of us wants what the other parts want. The best example is the constant battle between heart and head.

The inconjunct from Mercury to Mars is mitigated by their mutual reception. The inconjunct represents no common ground, and yet in these signs, this pair has everything in common. I say use this energy to the max to plough through problems that seem to have no solution. Communicate, brainstorm, and seek the areas of mutual interest. They are there.

Lastly, of course, we have Mars in Virgo opposite Neptune in Pisces – the harsh and accurate critic who analyzes every detail versus the vast, unknowable unconscious. Even this apparently irreconcilable opposition has a solution, represented by the New Moon itself. What we see with our eyes is an expression of the invisible energies underlying the material universe. This is a great time for any kind of energetic medicine such as acupuncture, homeopathy, Reiki, and so forth.

Before I end, I want to share the story of the photo. On Friday, I was headed into the city for an important meeting. Rather than sitting in the stuffy passenger cabin on the ferry, I went to the covered seating area. Even when it’s chilly, I prefer it to the interior. I can sit there in solitude, contemplating the sun on the water.

Just as I was settling in, a young man with a guitar case came out. “There goes my quiet meditation,” I thought. Before he sat down, he asked whether it would be OK with me if he played. “Well, that depends,” I said. “Do you play well?” He laughed, opened his case, tuned his instrument, and began strumming. The sunlight was hitting the space just right, creating a perfect photo op. So there was my choice: I could be annoyed that my solitude was disrupted, or I could take pictures. I asked his permission and joked that it was a fair trade. As it turned out, he played exceptionally well, and he chose a song with the perfect rhythm for traveling – whether physically moving over water or spiritually moving over waves of energy.

Sometimes we are blessed in spite of ourselves.

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

Full Moon in Libra, April 6

The "Spirit of Progress" balances atop a building in downtown Chicago. This photo was taken in September 2009, but it's a perfect expression for the Full Moon in Libra with Venus in Gemini. Image credit: Paul Beaty for The Associated Press.

People have been so grumpy in the past couple of days. I attribute it to the effects of waking up out of a Mercury-in-Pisces slumber – like bears coming out of hibernation.

Friday’s Full Moon isn’t helping. Research has shown that the Full Moon affects our behavior, and usually not kindly. We might expect the Moon in Libra to be an exception, Libra being the sign of peace and harmony. However, the chart for this Full Moon is fraught with conflict.

The dominant feature of the chart is a tight T-square with Venus, Mars, and Neptune in the early degrees of the mutable signs. We’re adjusting to recent changes, and it’s not a smooth process. Change by definition is disruptive, and even positive changes can take some getting used to. If changes happened outside your control, then adapting will be even more unnerving. At the same time, the growing square between Uranus and Pluto threatens major shakeups in the collective that will have a ripple effect on our individual lives. (If you ordered the <a title="StarGuide " href="https://realastrologers.com/forecasts/starguide-monthly-and-seasonal-forecasts&quot;StarGuide Spring forecast, you’ve already got my take on how this planetary arrangement could play out for you.)

A couple of different things can happen at the Full Moon. A project or relationship that began at the New Moon can reach a critical stage, or an issue can crop up that is related to the house in your natal chart where the Full Moon falls. I’m betting that for most of us, it will be the first scenario. The reason I say this is that Mercury has just gone direct. The New Moon in Aries on March 22 was a real sparkler – or, rather, it would have been, if both Mercury and Mars hadn’t been retrograde. With Mercury now direct, developments that normally would have taken place around the New Moon may occur now. Or – sorry to say this – you may have to wait until the next New Moon, on April 21. By then, Mars will be direct again, too.

Since Libra is the sign of relationships, I expect that many of you will experience major developments in a close partnership. Again, these changes aren’t likely to be entirely comfortable, and in fact you may have to move through some conflict in order to restore the balance between you and your partner. Rehashing details is going to be a real temptation, but it will be hard to recall exactly who said what and when. What comes out of your partner’s mouth may be so inconsistent with what you remember that you wonder what they’ve been smoking. As important as details may be to your circumstances, they’re going to be difficult, if not impossible, to pin down, so you might just want to forget about them for now and move forward. Generally, I don’t think this is a good idea, as people tend to set things aside to avoid having to be honest and vulnerable. This time, however, it may be the only way to make any progress at all.

Chart for Full Moon in Libra

Click on image to enlarge

The only positive angle in this chart is between Venus and Uranus, which are in a sextile – not the most powerful aspect, but it can create some sparks, depending on where these planets are in your chart. The conventional interpretation of favorable Venus-Uranus combinations is an unexpected development in love or money. This could well be the case for many people, and I’d go so far as to say that “past-life” connections could be a major factor. I write “past-life” for convenience, since that’s how most people think of it. I actually prefer the term “other lives,” because it more accurately describes what I think is behind these connections. In any case, keep your antennae up.

The Sun and Moon also are in close alignment with Vesta, which I think is quite interesting, given that NASA’s Dawn spacecraft currently is flying by Vesta and sending back phenomenal images of the asteroid’s pockmarked surface. There’s no consensus among astrologers about the meaning of Vesta in the chart – or, indeed, any of the asteroids. I believe the attention we’re giving Vesta and Ceres through the Dawn mission will lead to clarification about their roles in astrology, both in the charts of individuals and in mundane astrology.

Since I’m discussing asteroids, it’s also worth mentioning that Juno is conjunct the North Node in Sagittarius – which means she’s opposite Venus at the apex of the mutable T-square. It’s often helpful to look at what’s opposite the apex to find the “out” in difficult situations correlating to a T-square. Named for the wife of Jupiter in classical mythology, asteroid Juno naturally is associated with marriage and partnership in astrology. Although I have the same reserve in assigning any particular role to asteroids until we have more empirical data, it’s probably safe to assume she has something to do with committed partnership. Moreover, it might turn out to be about soul mates and the concept of “sacred marriage.” Juno on the North Node opposite Venus on the South Node would seem to suggest that the way out of obsession and raging hormones is to understand the truth of how we’re connected with a soul mate across the boundaries of space and time.

When I come up with a plausible theory, you’ll be the first to know.

Weekly Forecast January 23: New Moon in Aquarius, Mars Retrograde

New Moon in Aquarius

© Dan Collier for Dreamstime.com

Pip said it all in her comment on last week’s post. Just about everyone I know started having major computer problems a couple of days ago — myself included.

The Internet connectivity on my computer stopped working at 1 a.m. Saturday. After nearly six hours on the phone with tech support reps in various parts of the world, I took it into a local repair shop, where it remains in a long queue. Why was I not surprised upon hearing that several other people had brought their computers in earlier on the same day? Fortunately, I have a backup, but it’s a poor old lemon that is tortured by the increasing demands for speed and memory of Internet use. I’m trying to be as nice to it as I can so that it will live until I get my regular machine back.

So there you have the essence of Mars stationing to go retrograde in Virgo. Circumstances should improve somewhat once he gets moving again, even in reverse. It beats being stopped entirely.

That said, there are several unknowns in this scenario. Uranus, which also is associated with electronics, Internet, and so forth, is currently in Aries, the sign ruled by Mars. In our lifetime, we haven’t experienced this pairing, and so we don’t know how they behave. Theoretically, they are two bad boys out to see what kind of mischief they can make. They’ll get a third gang member when Mercury enters Aquarius on Friday and contacts Uranus by sextile on Saturday. Uranus is said to be a higher octave of Mercury, so these two have a natural affinity, and together with Mars, they will make up an energy triangle. For those into the mechanics: Mercury in Aquarius deposits to Uranus, ruler of Aquarius; Uranus in Aries deposits to Mars, ruler of Arie; and Mars in Virgo deposits to Mercury, ruler of Virgo.

That’s the bad news. There’s also plenty of good news this week, so let’s turn to that now.

Chart for New Moon in Aquarius

Click on image to enlarge

Monday starts right off with the New Moon in forward-looking Aquarius, in a close sextile with Uranus, the modern ruler of Aquarius. Of course, he’s in Mars, and we just discussed the possible implications. Still, I’m optimistic. Although unexpected events are likely, I think they will be mostly positive, given that the sextile is a positive angle and quite dynamic.

The New Moon also makes a close contact with Jupiter, and while the angle is a square, normally indicating conflict, the Moon and Jupiter are compatible energies. “Conflict” is relative, and in this case it could simply mean a moral dilemma between your New Year’s resolution to lose weight and the double fudge caramel sundae staring at you from the special dessert menu. Or, you may find yourself feeling overly generous and making a promise you can’t keep. Mercury squares Jupiter on Saturday, which also can be a positive. The downside is that you may overlook important details, especially with Mars retrograde. If you have an important project on Saturday, plan ahead carefully, and have someone you trust go over your work. Also, make a mental note to be open to the ideas of others. Aquarius and Taurus are both fixed signs, given to stubbornness.

Two additional reasons for optimism are that this New Moon chart has a couple of hidden fairies. Ceres may function here as a sort of fairy godmother, in that Ceres and Uranus are in perfect conjunction. At his worst, Uranus stirs the pot and conjures up chaos, but there’s usually a reason for it, and that reason has to with changing what’s broken and not working. At his best, Uranus is the Magician and Awakener. Ceres, meanwhile, is the wise earth mother, dedicated to the health and well-being of life on the planet. It will be interesting to watch the news headlines for environmental developments this week.

Ceres also has a natural association with Virgo, so in a way, she may be a temporary “chaperone” for Uranus and company. That said, they might also do her service by shaking up humanity’s planetary life-support system. You might say that the human race has a dysfunctional relationship with its mother, and something needs to change radically to restore the balance.

The second fairy is Venus, who in Pisces is the Fairy Queen. Although Uranus and Mars are the tough guys in the leading roles, they are inextricably linked to the planet of love and desire, in the sign of compassion and the collective unconscious. Venus is said to be exalted in Pisces, where her love and desire nature are at their highest. It is a state of grace.

The final word is that whatever happens this week, no matter how strange, unexpected, or upsetting, try to understand how it fits into an intricate whole. How do these new and surprising developments carry you forward toward fulfilling your life’s highest purpose?

Much love and courage to all!
Aquarius, the sign of astrologyPat

Weekly Forecast September 5: Mercury Enters Virgo, Venus Sextile Mars

© Vadim Kozlovsky | Dreamstime.com

This week, we continue to encounter circumstances that allow us to put our new skills to the test as we move deeper into new territory.

With the Moon in Capricorn on Tuesday and Wednesday, there are small reminders of situations we’ve been in over the past two years. Most of you are moving on, but some ties remain. Because the Moon moves through the signs quickly, her influence is fleeting and sometimes not felt at all. Still, I’m betting you’ll get twinges of fear and worry – maybe worse – as memories surface. This is natural, so just allow the feelings to flow. As long as they don’t stick, you’re fine. If they do, that’s your clue that something still isn’t resolved.

On Sunday, Mars moves over the degree of the Jan. 15, 2010, solar eclipse in Capricorn. At 25 degrees, the eclipse was well out of the range of the cardinal T-square and grand cross, but it probably corresponds to your major challenge or challenges in the past two years. Think back to what was going on for you around the middle of January (plus or minus a week), and then think about what has changed. Chances are, you’re in a much different place. Several times in the past month or so, people have told me that they aren’t bothered by things that upset them before.

Among other things, we’re learning to see people and situations in a different light, and that changes how we respond. Right before Mars passes over that critical degree, he makes a dynamic sextile with Venus in Virgo. It’s interesting to note that both planets are in their fall, and yet relationships can still benefit. It’s when we’re at our weakest that we’re most likely to drop our defenses and be real with each other.

On Thursday, Mercury opposes Neptune for the third and final time in this cycle, and then he re-enters Virgo on Friday. When Mercury turned retrograde in early August, he was in close opposition with Neptune. The level of confusion was beyond what we usually feel when Mercury shifts motion, and many people told me they were “just so sleepy.” We’ll likely get that effect again late this week. Mercury and Neptune are both associated with sleep and dreams, so it’s a wonderful opportunity to pay attention to your dreams. They can contain important messages.

These messages can be an important source of healing, and that’s likely to be the case on Saturday, when Mercury opposes Chiron. Healing messages aren’t always comfortable; indeed, they may be mildly upsetting. It’s never easy when the deep psyche is stirred up. This is especially true for past-life memories, which are surfacing more often for many of you. The first memories to come back typically involve close relationships – that’s why so many of you are meeting soul mates. After that, we begin to remember traumatic experiences. The collective conscious contains many such memories, along with lifetimes of wounds. We began addressing these in earnest a few years back, when Neptune and Chiron conjoined in Aquarius. We can go deeper with Chiron in Pisces.

Back in Virgo, Mercury will be in his own sign – although I’ve been lobbying for joint rulership with Ceres ever since she gained the same “dwarf planet” status as Pluto. Little did I know at the time that there was an ancient precedent for this association. Manilius, writing in the 1st century CE, associated each of the astrological signs with a patron deity. A couple of weeks ago, I ordered a translation of his Astronomica from Amazon and was astonished to find that he, too, paired Ceres with Virgo. “The Virgin with her sheaf belongs to Ceres,” he wrote. He also paired Pisces with Neptune, long before planet Neptune was discovered. He assigned Vesta to Capricorn. You just have to love the synchronicity.

Virgo certainly has two distinct sides, symbolized beautifully by Mercury and Ceres. One side of Virgo – perhaps we should call it the left-brained Virgo – is into details, perfection, mechanical function, and logic. Have you ever noticed how many accountants, engineers and computer programmers have strong Virgo in their charts? The right-brained Virgo is the health-conscious, helpful friend in need. I always laugh when I come across a vegetarian Virgo. It’s so typical. Many of my clients with Moon in Virgo are in an alternative healing profession.

Next week is the Full Moon in mystical Pisces, the sign opposite Virgo. If you haven’t checked out Ruth’s latest article on Virgo and Pisces, you can find it here.

Also, don’t forget your StarGuide forecasts for September and Fall 2011. It has been a hellaciously busy week, but I managed to finish my sample for Martha Stewart. You’ll see that I’ve expanded my personal notes on the New and Full Moon and Mercury retrograde, and I’ve also added information on the outer planets, since they don’t show up in a transit printout unless they’re changing houses. All of this in an effort to provide a service you can’t get anywhere else …

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

If you’d like to check out Astronomica, you can find it in my bookstore, under “In-depth & Specialized.” Every order helps support RealAstrologers. Thank you!

Weekly Forecast August 8: Mars Square Uranus, Opposite Pluto

© Imrich Farkas for Dreamstime.com

I sure have felt the angriness floating around this past week. Have you?

With Mercury retrograde and Mars moving through the T-square degrees, rush hour traffic on Friday was hell. People were doing crazy things, cutting in front of each other without signaling, flipping each other off, and yelling obscenities out the window. A pedestrian who witnessed one of these maneuvers yelled out, “Idiots!” Seattle isn’t particularly known for road rage, so I can only imagine how it was in other locales, especially since many of you also are still suffering under intense heat waves.

The dreams are weird, too. Friends who normally don’t even remember their dreams are commenting on it. Mine have been schizophrenic, to say the least. For that, we can look to Mercury’s continuing opposition to Neptune, planet of sleep and dreams. The two make another exact contact on Monday, right after Mercury re-enters Leo on his retrograde path. If you can steal away for a vacation, do it now!

The rough sailing has already started, but the waves get higher on Tuesday, when Mars squares Uranus in Aries. This is an extremely volatile combination that calls to mind the scene from the 1976 film Network in which masses of people shout out their windows, “I’m as mad as hell, and I’m not going to take this anymore!” If you don’t know what I’m referring to, check out the clip on YouTube. It’s eerily relevant for our current economic crisis and especially relevant this week.

The Mars-Uranus square is amplified by the Moon in early Capricorn, which squares Uranus, opposes Mars, conjoins Pluto and squares Saturn – all in less than 24 hours on Tuesday and Wednesday. Although the Moon is a fleeting influence, her journey through these degrees and contacts with the T-square planets provide a strong reminder of where we’ve been since last summer and how our lives changed as a result. It may not be all bad, but most of us likely will be unsettled in some way.

Peter Finch is 'mad as hell' in Network. © MGM.

On Wednesday and Thursday, depending on where you are, Mars opposes Pluto in the big standoff. Staying out of the crossfire may not be possible, but at least don’t go looking for trouble. It’s one thing to protest corruption and injustice, quite another to do so in an area where security forces are armed and waiting for any excuse to fire into the crowd.

The Moon enters Aquarius on Friday, and then we have the Full Moon on Saturday. The Full Moon typically brings results to projects or situations that began at the New Moon, but we’ll probably experience delays and possibly setbacks due to Mercury’s retrograde phase and the challenges represented by Mars in conflicting aspect. If you feel like you’re losing ground, hang in there and try not to get too discouraged. The New Moon on August 28 is brilliant, and the new territory indicated by the New Moon in Leo on July 30 will come into view as well. If you want to know where these lunations fall in your chart, you’ll find it your Starguide Monthly Forecast for August.

Now, there is something really exciting happening this week. NASA’s Dawn mission is scheduled to go into orbit around Vesta, one of the so-called “asteroid goddesses.” Photos already are streaming back of Vesta’s pockmarked surface.

What can we read into a spacecraft called Dawn orbiting an asteroid named after a Roman goddess? It’s no accident that Vesta, like Ceres before her, has entered the collective consciousness – or, I should say, re-entered, as both goddesses were revered in various forms in ancient times and then forgotten, swallowed by time. As usual, we can turn to mythology for possible clues about the greater significance in this event.

The planets are named after Roman deities, most of which were adapted from the Greeks. Vesta, goddess of hearth and home, was highly revered. Her symbol was an eternal flame, which was kept burning in the holiest ground of ancient Rome and in every home. Among other things, it was a reminder that community is extended family. As it turns out, Vesta currently is in Aquarius, the sign of community and the “family of man.” If nothing else, the global debt crisis is hammering home the reality that we’re all connected, and in the most personal way.

Vesta’s Greek counterpart, Hestia, was one of the 12 Olympians, the most important of the gods and goddesses in ancient Greece. She was the first child of Cronus (Roman Saturn) and Rhea, who were Titans – the elder gods. Cronus, who himself had led the overthrow of the first generation of Titans, ate his children to prevent them from doing the same to him. However, Rhea plotted to save Zeus, who in turn instigated the overthrow of the Titans and forced Cronus to spit out his older siblings. As the eldest, Hestia was the first to be swallowed and the last to be disgorged; thus, she was said to be both the oldest and the youngest of the new race of gods that replaced the old cosmic order.

The War of the Titans lasted 10 years and ended the Golden Age, a period of peace and abundance, when manmade law was unnecessary because everyone lived in their integrity. This notion of a celestial war didn’t originate with the Greeks but also can be found in older cultures. There’s even a version in the Christian Bible. Likewise, the story of an earthly paradise is found in many ancient traditions.

I’ve often mentioned a planetary energy shift, which is just another way of describing this war. It’s common to believe that our ancient ancestors were superstitious, because they believed in gods, demons, and other human-like entities. However, I see their belief system as an ingenious way of putting a human face on disembodied energies, taking them out of the abstract so they could be understood by the human mind.

In that vein, Hestia represents initiating fire or spirit, an attribute astrologers assign to Aries, the first of the four cardinal signs (Aries, Cancer, Libra, Capricorn). The cardinal T-square, which at times has formed into a grand cross, was the astrological configuration that led to predictions that great change would occur from 2010 to 2012, with political upheaval continuing into 2015, as indicated by the long-term square between Uranus in Aries and Pluto in Capricorn. It’s no accident, then, that we’re visiting Vesta in the midst of this cardinal buildup.

Dawn will spend a year observing Vesta and then will head toward Ceres, with a scheduled arrival date of 2015. The Greek counterpart of Ceres was Demeter, Hestia’s sister, who also was among the Olympians. I’ve written a lot about Ceres, who came back into the collective awareness when she was “promoted” to dwarf planet in 2006.

At the very least, the mission to find out more about celestial objects named after goddesses tells us that the planetary energy shift is restoring the balance between masculine and feminine energies. Of course, this isn’t news, but just confirms what many of us have felt intuitively for several years.

As an addendum, I’d like to mention Juno, NASA’s new mission to Jupiter. Juno was launched into space last Friday, August 5, and is scheduled to arrive at Jupiter in July 2016. In Roman mythology, Juno was Jupiter’s wife and queen of the gods. Asteroid Juno currently is at 4 degrees Libra, directly opposite Uranus, which means that she is intimately involved in this week’s cardinal configuration.

How’s that for synchronicity?

I leave you with this awe-inspiring full rotation of Vesta, courtesy NASA/JPL.

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