Tag Archives: equinox

Weekly Forecast March 18: Sun Enters Aries, Mars Conjunct Uranus

Pioneers. © Pat Paquette, 2013.

Pioneers. © Pat Paquette, 2013.

Mercury is direct, thank goddess. It wasn’t the worst Mercury retrograde ever, but it had (for me, at least) some ugly exchanges and creepy irritations. Sounds like Pisces.

Don’t get me wrong. I love Pisces. My Moon is in Pisces, and sometimes I forget that I’m not a Pisces. Last week someone told me I looked like one. Looks like a fish, swims like a fish, must be a fish?

The thing is, Pisces has two distinct sides. One is creative and imaginative. The other is deluded and paranoid. I don’t know anyone with strong Pisces energy in their chart who has all the “good” Pisces and none of the “bad.” In short, Pisces energy is complex and difficult to manage, as these past few weeks have shown. Ironically, last week seemed to be the worst, even though Mars moved out of Pisces and into his own sign of Aries – or perhaps because of it. To me – and I know this doesn’t make sense, but that’s how it came to me – it was as if all the pent-up anger and frustration of Mars in Pisces suddenly was released after Mars changed signs on Monday. On the road, in the supermarket, even in line for coffee, the energy was aggressive and agitated.

Mercury’s return direct today (March 17), will help, but we’ll feel a more significant shift on Wednesday, when the Sun enters Aries. Venus leaves Pisces on Thursday, and then we’ll be back to two planets in Pisces – three, if you count Chiron as a planet, which I don’t. And there will be four planets in Aries.

Aries is known for being selfish, brash and impulsive, but it’s also dynamic, direct, and pioneering. My favorite metaphor for Aries energy is the seed bursting out of its shell beneath the ground in spring and pushing its way upward toward the sun. Think of having all that weight on top of you, and you’re tiny and yet so determined that you can push through it all. It’s a difficult task requiring single-minded purpose and total disregard for anyone else in a struggle for survival. Who couldn’t use some of that strength? I know I could!

Aries Ingress Washington D.C.

Click on image to enlarge

That said, the Aries ingress chart suggests that the weirdness of the past week may be with us for a while longer and might color the entire year in world affairs. I say this, because Pisces is still strong in the chart, especially for Washington, where Pisces is rising and Venus is near the Ascendant. In the ingress chart cast for London, Pisces is on the Midheaven, with Cancer Rising and the Moon approaching the Ascendant. In the Washington chart, the Sun, Mars, and Uranus are in the first house. In the London chart, the three planets are in the tenth house.
Aries Ingress London

Click on image to enlarge

The optimist in me would like to interpret this split personality as a sign that we can pioneer new territory, with advanced technology and the will to use it to find solutions to the world’s problems, while placing a priority on helping the poor and dispossessed and acknowledging that scientific advancement without a simultaneous awakening in human consciousness will get us nowhere and perhaps even destroy us entirely. Of course, “human consciousness” is a squishy, Pisces sort of term. In the 17th century, rationalist thinkers believed that human consciousness was advanced through science and that superstitious beliefs such as astrology and the mystical aspects of religion would be follies of the ignorant and illiterate masses. Isn’t it ironic that this view persists four hundred years later and that science still thinks it has all the answers? I do think there’s hope, but I also think that science and spirituality (for lack of a better word) are going to make combative bedfellows. It’s anyone’s guess if they’ll kill each other before successfully mating.

Terribly sorry if this isn’t practical advice for the coming week, but in the true spirit of Pisces, I believe that our thoughts, behavior, and actions reverberate into the collective, and this seems as good a time as any for a friendly reminder. It’s time for a collective reboot as the Sun moves through the final degrees of the zodiac and begins a new solar year at the spring equinox.

The other big aspect this week is the conjunction of Mars and Uranus on Friday. It’s a tad scary, as this is an explosive planetary combination, and in a fire sign, too. Unfortunately, astrology isn’t much good as a predictive tool here, because we can only talk about potentials and probabilities, and events normally don’t occur at the moment of an exact alignment. When Mars is involved in an aspect, the period of influence can be a week or more. Then, I do recall one instance in which an explosion was nearly exact. Back in 2007, with Mars and Uranus conjunct to the exact degree in Pisces, a tanker truck carrying gasoline exploded near the Bay Bridge in Oakland and caused a portion of the freeway to melt. Astrologers consider Neptune, ruling plant of Pisces, as ruler of oil and gas. Jupiter, the traditional ruler of Pisces, was in conflicting aspect with Mars and Uranus by less than two degrees. Without the benefit of a chart for every tanker explosion that ever occurred, it’s hard to say whether this was just a coincidence, but you can guess my opinion on the matter.

Back to this week, we’ll just have to wait and see. I certainly would caution you against blurting out your thoughts without stopping to think first. The resulting explosion might not melt a freeway, but it could ruin your whole day.

For those of you interested in a forecast for spring, I finally completed the formatting for the StarGuide Spring 2013 forecast. Several people have ordered in advance, so if you want your report this week, don’t wait! this forecast includes interpretations for all three eclipses in April and May. I do look at each individual chart and make notations if I see any unusual aspects in your chart – for example, if an eclipse is conjunct your Sun or Moon.

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

Weekly Forecast September 19: Sun Enters Libra, Fall Equinox

Weighing the Harvest. © Mafoto for Dreamstime.com

The biggest news this week is the equinox – fall in the Northern Hemisphere, spring for those of you in the Land of Oz and other parts south.

The Sun enters Libra on Friday, followed by Mercury on Sunday, just as the Sun opposes Uranus. This is the halfway point of the astrological year, the balance between light and dark, represented by the scales. The scales, or balance, also are symbolic of the harvest, traditionally a time when crops were weighed and accounts settled. For our ancestors, it was the culmination of the agricultural year. If they didn’t plant enough, or if their crop was damaged by weather or pests, they had to do the math for how they would ration to get through the winter.

For us, it’s a time to consider our progress since the Sun entered Aries on March 20. As you may recall, that was a particularly volatile period, with a new cardinal buildup that mirrored last summer’s T-square. Well, we get that again starting this week, as the Sun and Mercury form a T-square with Uranus and Pluto.

That may sound dire, and yet I’m optimistic about the possible manifestations of this configuration, primarily because of the dynamic position of Mars. The testosterone planet has been frustrated in Cancer since the beginning of August. You only needed to drive a few miles down the highway to see it. I lost count of how many times some guy in a monster pickup screamed up behind me, rode my tail, then blew around me at twice the speed limit, cutting off the guy behind him.

As of this evening (Sept. 18), Mars will be in Leo, where he is much happier. His energy can flow, and that means it can be channeled into creative projects and other productive activities. In this position, he’ll provide an “out” to the cardinal T-square, as he’ll be at a positive angle with Uranus in Aries, the sign he rules, and the Sun in Libra. At its best, this translates to creative solutions to seemingly insurmountable problems. It also shows where you can be a leader and a pioneer.

The downside is that Mars will be at a jarring inconjunct with Pluto in Capricorn. Mars in Leo has megalomaniacal tendencies as it is. In discord with the ultimate authoritarian, we’ve got the metaphorical irresistible force colliding with an immovable object. Watch the news headlines for intransigent world leaders up against forces beyond their control (e.g., debt and finances). In your personal life, take care not to let your ego get the better of you in situations involving authority.

This week is a great time to order your StarGuide 2011 Fall Forecast! I’ve added some new features, including expanded notes on Mercury retrograde and the lunations – two of which are eclipses. I’ve also added 1-2 pages with interpretations of the house positions of the outer planets. You won’t find these in a typical transit forecast, which provides this information only when a planet changes houses. With the outer planets, this can be anywhere from two years for Saturn to 15 years or more for Pluto. It takes me significantly longer to include this data, as I create these reports individually, but I’ve kept the price at $36. If you’d like to see a sample, I created a new one for one of my favorite Leo personalities, Martha Stewart.

Next week’s New Moon is at 4 degrees Libra, which forms a tight T-square with Uranus and Pluto. I’ll cover it in next week’s forecast, but in the meantime, you can get an idea of how it will affect you by ordering your StarGuide Forecast. Remember, I’m going back to school on September 26, so if you wait, I can’t guarantee delivery of your report within 48 hours. Even if you order this week, it may take longer than 24 hours (my usual turnaround) to get your report, as my schedule is close to booked.

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

Weekly Forecast September 20: Sun in Libra, Full Moon in Aries

This year’s cardinal T-square is mostly done, thank goddess, but I’ve been keeping my eye on this week as one exception.

Thanks to Thursday’s Full Moon, for a brief period, we’ll revisit the cardinal T-square, which peaked in early August. I wrote a complete interpretation in my Saturday post, reviewing how this Full Moon mirrors the T-square but also holds the potential to take us beyond the limitations we faced over the summer.

In addition to the Full Moon, the big news this week is the Sun’s entry into Libra, marking the official beginning of fall in the Northern Hemisphere. The Sun will cross the degrees of the T-square, but one of the biggest obstacles in that earlier configuration, Saturn, has moved far enough away to be less of a constraint. Sun in Libra suggests moderation, so I don’t think we’ll get a power surge but rather the easy movement forward that occurs when you let your foot off the brake.

The Sun’s Libra ingress occurs Wednesday at 11:09 p.m. on the East Coast of the United States. Of course, it will be Thursday already in the Eastern Hemisphere, where many of RealAstrologers’ faithful readers live.

Before entering Libra, the Sun in the final degrees of Virgo opposes Jupiter and Uranus, both of which are retrograde and back in Pisces for the rest of the year. Although they aren’t part of the cardinal T-square, they do form a tight T-square with the Sun and Moon on Thursday, and so their energies can’t be discounted. Also, I expect that the Sun will carry some of their loud, boisterous energy forward into the Full Moon, so we can expect to hear from these two. Wild storms – meteorological, political and emotional – are among the potential manifestations from Tuesday through Friday.

On Saturday, the Sun squares Pluto, newly direct in Capricorn and ready to flex his muscle. This is the most contentious aspect of the week and where I expect we’ll have to revisit old obstacles. There’s nothing to do during Pluto transits except to give up resistance. If you’re trying to hang onto something – a situation, a relationship, a belief – you may need to let it go. At the very least, you’ll need to change your approach. You probably already know where the problem area lies, as this really is just a repeat of issues you faced over the summer. This time, though, you may really need to give up and try something different.

Difficult Sun-Pluto transits also correspond to mechanical breakdowns. If you’ve been avoiding repairs, you may not be able to do so any longer.

Sunday could be emotionally charged, with the Moon in Taurus opposite Venus and Mars in Scorpio. It sounds great for certain indoor activities, but the resulting fireworks may be a little more intense than you bargained for. If you manage to access a deep place in your psyche where difficult emotions have been hidden or repressed, let them come up. The release may leave you feeling like a dishrag, but you’ll feel a lot better when Monday morning rolls around.

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

Image: The new crop of apples has arrived! © Barbara Helgason for Dreamstime.com.

Saturday Extra: Where Do We Start?


Did you notice that the first day of spring is early this year?

The dates of the equinoxes change from one year to the next, which means that the dates of the astrological Sun signs also change. If you’d like the scientific explanation of this phenomenon, there’s a great article on Live Science.

The equinoxes and solstices are the cusps of the four cardinal signs — Aries, Cancer, Libra, and Capricorn. But the cusps of the other signs change, too, so if you were born around the dates when the signs change, you can’t rely on the dates given in newspaper horoscopes to get your correct Sun sign. Not that any our sophisticated readers would do such a thing, but I just thought I’d mention it, as this is a bit confusing.

For those born around the dates that the Sun changes signs, including the equinoxes and solstices, the only way to be sure of your Sun sign is to have your chart done. Fortunately, there are some good online astrology sites that let you do this for free. By far the best is the Swiss Astrodienst, which I highly recommend.

What if you were born on a day when the Sun changed signs? Hopefully, you know what time you were born. If not, you may want to get a chart rectification, a technique astrologers use to try to determine or fine-tune birth times. Then you will need to test it over time to see if it corresponds to current transits.

Can you imagine going through you life thinking you’re a Libra, only to discover you’re really a Scorpio? Just think of the psychotherapy you’d need to undo that trauma …

Happy Equinox!

Aquarius, the sign of astrologyPat

Image: Spring crocuses. Neith captured these little lovelies turning their faces up to the equinox sun yesterday. I found this bit of trivia on Wikipedia and thought it was appropriate: The financial community sometimes refers to companies or economic sectors that rise early after an economic downturn as “Crocuses” in reference to the flower’s ability to thrive in the late winter or early spring.

Weekly Forecast March 16: Spring Equinox

Statue of a ram from ancient SumerWe’ve had snow here three days in the past week, but the rhododendrons are budding, so spring has got to be on the way!

The big news this week, of course, is the spring equinox (fall for our many readers south of the equator). This is the moment that the Sun enters the sign of Aries, the first sign of the zodiac. It’s the beginning of the astrological year and time for new projects, fresh beginnings, renewed optimism … in short, getting off your butt and getting moving.

In theory, anyway. People everywhere are telling me that they are just plain tired. There doesn’t seem to be a lot of energy for new projects. Then, maybe a shift to Aries is what we all need to get some motivation and enthusiasm.

The equinox isn’t until Friday, so this actually is a great week for finishing up anything on your plate. I have a couple of projects that feel like great weights, and I’m going to make a concerted effort this week to get them done, once and for all.

Venus continues on her retrograde path, making this a good time to go back and focus on certain activities, particularly those involving relationships, money, or what we value. Questioning what you value could be a fruitful exercise in the next few weeks, especially if you’re having difficulty getting what you want. Do you really want it, and why? Are you getting it at the expense of what you hold dear?

Otherwise, there’s not a lot going on this week — which may turn out to be a good thing if you’re trying to get old stuff out of the way. You may feel a blip on Wednesday, when Mercury in Pisces opposes Saturn in Virgo, and another on Sunday, when Mercury conjoins Uranus (late Saturday in western time zones). Events associated with this alignment won’t necessarily be disruptive. To the contrary, you may get some great ideas for solutions to the issues you’ve been facing with the Saturn-Uranus opposition.

Also on Wednesday, Mars opposes Ceres, who has backed all the way up to the first degree of Virgo as she prepares to return direct in April. I’m still observing Ceres in individual charts and have to be honest with you that I’m not sure what this aspect will bring. I’d love to hear from you, especially if you’re a Virgo or have strong Virgo in your chart, if anything happens in your life around Wednesday that could be related to this aspect. Issues possibly related to Ceres include diet and digestion and how we serve others, whether formally through our jobs or informally through our day-to-day circumstances. With Mars opposing Ceres, we would expect some sort of flare-up in one of these areas. Examples might be a case of food poisoning or a severe allergic reaction to something you eat.

On Thursday (late Wednesday on the West Coast of the United States and points west), Mars sextiles Pluto. Unless this aspect hits personal planets or critical degrees in your chart, I doubt you’ll feel it. If it does make close contact, you should get some extra energy reserves to push forward with a pet project or plow through opposition. As always with Pluto, you need to make sure that your motivations aren’t purely selfish, or your efforts will backfire.

Love and blessings to all …
Aquarius, the sign of astrologyPat

Image: Ram Caught in a Thicket, statuette from ancient Sumer (modern-day Iraq) made of gold, silver, lapis lazuli, copper, shell, red limestone, and bitumen, ca. 2650–2550 B.C. This amazing artifact is part of the permanent collection of the University of Pennsylvania Museum of Archaeology and Anthropology. The sacrificed ram is repeated throughout ancient mythology. In the story of Jason and the golden fleece, the winged ram from which it came becomes the constellation of Aries.