Tag Archives: Neptune in Pisces

Weekly Forecast December 29: Sun Conjunct Pluto, Full Moon in Cancer

Ocean Shores by James A WeythmanAs 2013 drew to a close, many people were saying, “Good riddance.” I was sorry to have to respond with, “Careful what you wish for,” and a warning that 2014 wasn’t going to be a picnic.

I don’t know that I’d advise breaking out the wicker and gingham just yet.
There’s still plenty of drama on the horizon, along with continuing chaos on many fronts. Overall, though, we’re going to see a shift in the year ahead. We’ve identified undeniable patterns, we know what needs to change, and we know what hasn’t been effective in bringing about those changes. A collective wakeup call is on the way that hopefully will restore some sanity to the world. Continue reading

Weekly Forecast November 10: Mars Conjunct Pluto, Venus Conjunct Saturn

Reflections on a Purple Flower. © Gretchen Friedrich, 2014.

Reflections on a Purple Flower. © Gretchen Friedrich, 2014.

The tension builds again this week, and duties and obligations must be met. In short, it’s not chill.

However, those who value hard work, commitment, and integrity will find that events this week have their own rewards, and confronting difficult situations head on could be quite productive. Moreover, there are subtle energies at work this week that could manifest as sudden flashes of inspiration, intuition, and insight. Continue reading

Weekly Forecast October 27: Sun Trine Neptune, Mercury Sextile Jupiter

Detail from Neptune Offering Gifts to Venice, by Giambattista Tiepolo. c. 1750.

Detail from “Neptune Offering Gifts to Venice,” by Giambattista Tiepolo. c. 1750.

With Mercury out of retrograde and two eclipses behind us, we’re in for a lighter week, astrologically.

We’ve been through a lot over the past few months – well, all year, and three years before that. It hasn’t been one long crisis for most of us, but rather a series of challenges that have pushed and shoved us forward, carried us along on a rushing river. In the short periods of calm in between, we’ve barely had a chance to catch our breath, let alone time to reflect on what it’s all about. This week, we get that chance.

A lot has been written about the Uranus-Pluto square, which since 2012 has been exact five times. Continue reading

Weekly Forecast March 17: Sun Enters Aries, Mercury Conjunct Neptune

Storm in Hjørungavåg, by Gerhard Munthe, an illustration for  Olav Tryggvasons saga, 1899 edition.

Storm in Hjørungavåg, by Gerhard Munthe, an illustration for Olav Tryggvasons saga, 1899 edition.

This week marks the beginning of spring and the end of the astrological year. We’re also heading into the most volatile period of 2014 and arguably the most tumultuous since the summer of 2010.

You might ask how much crazier it could get. Violent revolutions for “freedom and democracy” that depose democratically elected leaders. The United States and Russia in a new Cold War. A plane gone mysteriously missing without a trace. And now a U.S. government-funded report suggesting that industrial 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 December 23: Mars Opposite Uranus, Sun Square Uranus

Leavenworth in December. © Pat Paquette, 2013.

Leavenworth in December. © Pat Paquette, 2013.

One thing many of us wish for at this time of year is peace on earth.

Jesus was heralded as a prince of peace, and his birth (which most likely did not occur in December) inspired hope for humanity. The wise men – who were, of course, astrologers – followed a star or maybe the stars to find the humble shelter where he was delivered.

Had he lived another thousand years or so, maybe Jesus could have brought peace to a warring planet. Instead, his message got twisted and perverted over the centuries, to the point that eventually his name was invoked as a cause for war and killing “infidels” for the glory of God. It’s sad that many of our fellow humans haven’t evolved beyond 11th century thinking and that “Peace on Earth” has devolved to a tired phrase in greeting cards and seasonal advertisements.

As an astrologer, I find extra meaning in the Hermetic maxim, As above, so below. I’m sorry to have to report that this week’s “above” is anything but peaceful. As I write, we’re heading straight into a period of breaking down and enforced change. Some of us may have to let go of situations and relationships that no longer are in our best interest. In world affairs, diplomacy is possible, but it will not come easily.

The dominant signature behind the turmoil is a cardinal T-square involving Mars, Uranus, and Pluto. As you know if you’ve been reading my blog, Uranus and Pluto have been in a square – a 90-degree angle signifying crises and conflict. We first began seeing correlating events on earth in late 2010, even though there wasn’t an exact square until 2012. There will be seven exact contacts in all, the final one occurring in March 2015. After that, we’ll experience a few years of ripple effect, like sailing in the wake of an aircraft carrier. This week, Mars opposes Uranus, transforming the square into a T-square. At the same time, the Sun and Mercury square Uranus as they approach conjunction with Pluto on New Year’s Day. That’s an intense lineup.

Mercury enters Capricorn on Tuesday. Obligations and commitments become more important, and with Jupiter in family oriented Cancer, get-togethers with relatives may be overwhelming. Then, some people love big family reunions. If that’s you, go for it! Capricorn also is a career-oriented sign, and Mercury rules business negotiations. Many business offices are closed the week between Christmas and New Year’s, so we may not experience this influence until after January 1.

The Mars-Uranus opposition is exact on Christmas Day. This pair literally can be explosive – all the more so with Uranus just a week out of retrograde. Challenging Mars-Uranus aspects often correspond to explosions or violent weather, whereas difficult aspects between Mars and Pluto can manifest as power struggles, including military conflict. The saving grace is that Mars is in Libra, the sign of diplomacy, so peace might have a chance. But it could just as likely be shattered by more-powerful forces hell-bent on war and destruction. For those who have never known anything but war and hatred, peace and love are threatening.

Mercury and the Sun conjoin on Sunday, and both square Uranus within 24 hours. The entire following week will be dominated entirely by the T-square, which is intensely activated at the New Moon on New Year’s Day. The downside of this configuration is abrupt endings, breakdowns, and losses. On the positive side, we’ll experience abrupt endings, breakdowns, and losses. I hate the overused phrase, “All endings contain a new beginning,” because it glosses over the seriousness of loss. If important endings do occur in your life, honor your grief. That said, there may be situations or circumstances in your life that desperately need changing, and for one reason or another, you haven’t been able to make it happen. Change could come quickly and unexpectedly under this Mars-driven cardinal T-square. It may be too abrupt. It may be disruptive. But sometimes you need to be pushed off the train speeding in the wrong direction, because you’re too scared to jump.

In world affairs, we’re getting more and more revelations about the extent of spying by the National Security Agency. Back in June, when Edward Snowden first made sensational news headlines for blowing the whistle on his former employer, there was a brief T-square with Mercury in Cancer squaring Uranus and opposing Pluto. This is exactly the kind of thing we’d expect from Mercury in aspect with Pluto or Neptune, which are associated with spying, secrecy, and deceit. In the coming week, we might expect more secrecy to “break down” as attempts are made to correct the injustice and abuse of power.

There are a couple of positive aspects this week that should be fairly easy to negotiate. The Sun and Mercury both sextile Neptune in Pisces – the Sun on Tuesday and Mercury on Thursday. Despite the chaos, we’ll have a wonderful opportunity to have meaningful discussions for most of the week. This is a perfect setup for those who prefer to spend evenings at parties having a deep conversation in the corner with one or two people. You won’t even need to be in an altered state to have a magical exchange. Mercury-Neptune aspects also can manifest as vivid dreams. Keep your dream journal handy.

Since I’ve been writing about the astrological significance of comet ISON, I thought it worth mentioning that there was a new blog post last week by Karl Battams, an astrophysicist and designated expert on ISON. Although it’s clear ISON is dead, astronomers continue to track the remnants in hopes of learning more about the outer edges of our solar system. Battams estimates that ISON was about 4.5 billion years old at its death.

Wishing you all a Merry Christmas with much love, joy, and PEACE,
Aquarius, the sign of astrologyPat

© Pat Paquette, RealAstrologers.com, 2013.

Weekly Forecast February 4: Mercury Enters Pisces, New Moon in Aquarius

May your happiness be without limit. © Pat Paquette, 2013.

May your happiness be without limit. © Pat Paquette, 2013.

The most significant astrological event this week is the New Moon in Aquarius, which also happens to be the Chinese New Year. But the flavor of the week is definitely fish.

Starting this week, we’re approaching a stellium of planets in Pisces that will culminate in an emotionally volatile New Moon in March. In the meantime, Mercury will turn retrograde in Pisces and conjoin Mars twice. My read on this is that we’re about to go through a collective release of accumulated anger, frustration, grief, and past-life trauma. Not that this hasn’t been happening in a big way already, but I think it’s about to get even bigger.

Over the past week, I’ve been following comments on a few news stories, and I’ve been struck by how stupid, mean, and argumentative people can be. And I don’t know if it’s just my imagination or if reading comprehension is at an all-time low. Don’t they teach that in school anymore? Or could it be that Jupiter stationed in Gemini is translating to a fixation on details without understanding the overall point of the article? Regardless, I see this as the collective venting of a high level of frustration and anger. The real source of public frustration – the corporate thieves who plundered the economy, drove up the unemployment rate, and got off scot-free, along with their political accomplices – are protected behind gated communities and armed guards. And they are no doubt pleased that, instead of plotting to storm the Bastille, the “little people” are either fighting among themselves or dousing their pain through addictive and escapist behaviors.

Ah, but the plotting thickens, in however small a way. It’s heartening to see people rallying in support of a waitress in St. Louis who was fired from Applebee’s last week for posting a customer’s rude note online. Many of the comments on news stories display an appalling lack of comprehension of the facts, but the response was visceral, and in this case, channeled in the right direction. Although there were some unbelievably rude and bigoted comments about the customer, the majority response was to call for a boycott of Applebee’s and its parent company, IHOP. For its part, Applebee’s showed its true colors by totally failing to grasp the extent of the public outrage. In its official “explanation,” you can almost hear the collapse of a decaying corporate structure.

This is all just a long way of saying that a revolution is indeed in the works – not that we haven’t known for years that it was coming, given the Uranus-Pluto square with reinforcement from Saturn in Scorpio. I always maintained that the rebellion would be a class war. With Mars in Pisces, the collective anger is going to make itself felt – all the more so when retrograde Mercury conjoins Mars later this month. It’s critical in the next six to eight weeks that you look for ways to channel any anger and frustration into appropriate action.

Now, there’s another way that all this Pisces energy could manifest, and that’s the thinning of the “veil” between worlds, sometimes called the “Veil of Isis.” More and more people are beginning to have memories, dreams, and visions of incarnations in other dimensions of time and space. This is very definitely the realm of Neptune, and confusion and disorientation are key attributes of the ninth planet. These memories can be distressing. Depending on what happened and how vividly you recall the event, the force of the emotional release could be explosive. This is especially true of karmic relationships. It’s my observation that merely knowing what happened in another lifetime usually isn’t enough to overcome a negative pattern or obsession with someone. The emotional charge has to be released, and then something changes internally that allows you to move on. Anyone who has gone through this process knows that it can be upsetting.

Mars conjoins Neptune on Monday, but we’re already feeling it. On Tuesday, Mercury enters Pisces, where he’ll turn retrograde on February 23. In all, Mercury will remain in Pisces for more than two months, when he normally breezes through a sign in three weeks. I mention this now, because Mercury enters pre-retrograde shadow on Friday, making it all the more important that you take action in the next two weeks to establish your course for the rest of the year. Even though we’ll be sailing through patchy fog, all of the planets are now direct and giving us a huge green light until February 18, when Saturn turns retrograde. This is the only period in 2013 with all ten planets direct – actually, all the asteroids, too – and we won’t have one in 2014 at all.

Of course, the biggest news this week is the New Moon in Aquarius on February 10, which is also the Chinese New Year and the beginning of the Year of the Water Snake (more water!). Since the rest of this week’s aspects are contained in the New Moon chart, I’ll discuss them in that context.

New Moon in Aquarius

Click on image to enlarge

This is a bowl chart with an odd sort of symmetry. The Sun and Moon are at the bottom at 21 degrees Aquarius, not in aspect with any other planets but in a square with the lunar nodes by exact degree. And, of course, all of the planets are direct, making this a remarkable New Moon chart filled with the promise of a head-spinning fast-forward.

Mercury and Mars are conjunct (the alignment is exact on Friday), providing a glimpse of what will come later this month, after Mercury turns retrograde and the two planets are conjunct for a second time. Communication is key here, because otherwise the combined energy of this pair is passive aggressive. That’s what the Applebee’s customer did, and it came back to bite her in the behind. Her beef was with management, and the whole incident could have been avoided had she communicated directly.

Mercury and Mars are both square Jupiter in Gemini at the New Moon, and Mars is still in conjunction with Neptune, so it will take some effort to communicate clearly and effectively, and failure to do so could have exaggerated consequences. Chiron is in on this alignment, too, so there is an increased risk that someone is going to end up with hurt feelings. But it doesn’t have to be this way. Jupiter and Uranus are sextile by exact degree and Mars and Mercury are approaching a trine with Saturn – all indicating positive ways to redirect anger and irritation. If you can summon up the courage to be candid and direct, you can shift the level of the discussion to higher ground and build new ties in your personal and professional relationships.

Venus sextiles Uranus on Wednesday and trines Jupiter on Thursday. These combined energies suggest unexpected opportunities and a stroke of brilliant luck, most likely in the areas of career and financial deals. Thursday is a great day for signing contracts. However, at the New Moon, Venus is in a close square with Saturn, suggesting cold water thrown on plans that looked so good only a few days earlier. At the very least, you may have some version of buyer’s remorse, that “What could I possibly have been thinking?” feeling. Well that’s what Mercury retrograde is for. You’ll have a couple of weeks to do some additional research, and if you want to change your mind, you’ll probably get an opportunity to do so.

The square from the Sun and Moon to the lunar nodes suggests that whatever takes place at this New Moon could have a feeling of fate or destiny about it, at least collectively. It may apply in individual cases, too, depending on where the Sun, Moon, and nodes currently are transiting your chart. It’s also intriguing to note that the Uranus-Pluto midpoint and the Venus-Mars midpoint are both 23 degrees Aquarius, with the Sun and Moon just two degrees away. This further suggests events that are fated and part of the overall evolution/revolution of Uranus and Pluto. Gender relations are part of this scenario as the struggle continues for women’s rights and an end to violence against women and girls.

Frankly, I’d like to see an end to violence against women, girls, boys, men, cats, and dogs. The collective release of accumulated anger, pain, and trauma – whether from this lifetime or other incarnations – will go a long way toward that end. Just be prepared for a really big mess.

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

Weekly Forecast December 17: Sun Enters Capricorn, End of the World

Where to now? © Lastdays1 for Dreamstime.com

Where to now? © Lastdays1 for Dreamstime.com

We got a wakeup call last week, and in typical Uranian fashion, it wasn’t anything we could have predicted.

What we know about Uranus is that the worst shakeups happen when we’re most in need of drastic change but resist, for whatever reason. Sometimes it’s because we’re so out of touch with what we really need that it never occurred to us to change anything. More often, though, there’s a voice just beneath the surface telling us that something has to give, but listening to that voice would require so much destabilization in our lives that we ignore it. Sometimes we even deliberately silence it.

The knee-jerk reactions to the Sandy Hook school shooting were predictable. The religious right says we need prayer in schools and the right for citizens to defend themselves with guns. The liberal left says tragedies like this could be prevented with stricter gun-control laws. If there’s any light in the darkness of this horror, it’s that deeper discussions seem to be emerging into the mainstream that transcend the finger-pointing and politicization. What does it say about the level of dysfunction of our society that it took the execution of 6-year-olds to start waking up to a meaningful dialogue?

As astrologers, we try to make broader sense of events. The usual method is to look at the chart for the event and the person responsible. Through newspaper reports, we learned that Adam Lanza, the shooter, was born on April 22, 1992, in Kingston, New Hampshire. We don’t have a birth time, but we can cast a chart for noon.

First of all, neither chart conveys the horror of this event, nor is it an appropriate use of astrology to judge someone’s character based on their chart. Second, without a birth time, there’s too much missing to draw any real conclusions. A noon chart for Adam gives him a Moon of 8 degrees Capricorn, making the first look at the chart startling, because transiting Pluto is at 8 degrees Capricorn. We need to stop right there and remember that the Moon travels through 12 degrees in a day. But then what if we had an accurate birth time of, say, 1 a.m.? That would put Pluto right on his Ascendant. Suddenly there would be pronouncements that he was having a bad Pluto transit.

My point is that we need to take great care in not making charts fit events or people. Sometimes there is no immediate explanation in the chart – just as there is no immediate explanation for how something like this could have happened in the first place. Now, I suspect that if we had an exact birth time, we might be able to dig a little deeper and find some clues. But even then, we have to remember that we are not slaves to our natal chart.

We also have to keep in mind that when we are in the midst of radical, outer-planetary cycles such as the Uranus-Pluto square, events correlating to this signature can happen at any time. Uranus came out of retrograde the day before the shooting. In my mind, this is significant, and it’s why I see this tragedy as a harsh wake-up call.

Those using the event to promote a political ideology are still sleeping. We’re so far beyond that point, it’s frightening. I think not only of the 20 children murdered at Sandy Hook, but all of the children in the world killed, maimed, and emotionally traumatized daily by war and violence. The recent bombing of Gaza – an act publicly supported by President Obama – resulted in the reported deaths of 167 people, including 35 children. The AP photo of Jihad Misharawi holding the body of his dead baby, killed in an Israeli airstrike, is indelibly burned in my memory.

But I am heartened – as much as one can be in the light of such demonic events – that it’s finally dawning on more people that deeper issues must be confronted, including the disturbing truth about psychiatric drugs – particularly the widespread use in children. According to a neighbor, Adam was on medication for an unspecified personality disorder. A related issue being discussed is our society’s approach to mental health. Eventually, though, we’re going to have to address a societal structure that requires so many people to take drugs to be “functional.”

With Neptune in Pisces, the drug issue will come to the fore. Neptune rules drugs and all mind-altering substances, and he’s in his element in the Fishes. The twelfth house, ruled by Neptune (in modern astrology), rules mental hospitals and prisons, so these issues also are going to be more prominent. In the meantime, society is going through an extreme breakdown under the Uranus-Pluto square. I was just reading about a rash of mass murders of school children in China over the past two years. A Chinese newspaper quoted an expert – ironically, an American college professor – who attributed the attacks to stress caused by rapid social change, increasing disparities in wealth, and lack of treatment for the mentally ill.

We have another three years of Uranus and Pluto, so it might be a good idea to start paying attention to real issues and not throwing up smoke screens of gun control and school prayer. We also need to take a hard look at our own lives and make an honest assessment of what we need to change.

The subject of sweeping change is all the more poignant this week as we approach the supposed end of the world on Friday. Now, frankly, I’d be happy to end the world “as we know it.” There’s way too much suffering, and our problems seem so insurmountable as to be impossible. But the world will continue, and we’re going to have to change.

This week’s aspects pale in comparison to current events, but here’s a quick rundown:

On Monday, Mercury opposes Jupiter, in mutual reception. I’m hopeful this will have some relation to negotiations between Congress and the White House to avoid going over the so-called “fiscal cliff.” I am pretty sure, though, given what I see in the charts, that we are going to have some cutbacks. How much and for whom remains to be seen.

On Wednesday, Venus in Sagittarius trines Uranus. Parties will be more subdued this year – I wrote that in last week’s forecast, and it’s even more true this week – but parties will happen nonetheless. We need an outlet from all the grief and sorrow, even if it’s only temporary. Still, the grief won’t be far from our minds, with Venus squaring Chiron on Thursday.

The Sun enters Capricorn on Friday, the winter solstice in the Northern Hemisphere. He immediately forms a happy sextile with Neptune in Pisces. This suggests to me that there might be a brief sign of hope for peace on earth – especially next summer, when Jupiter, Saturn, and Neptune form a grand trine.

Speaking of the Big Guy, Jupiter forms a quincunx with Pluto on Thursday and with Saturn on Saturday – the Yod that I don’t put a whole lot of stock in. More importantly, Saturn and Pluto are in sextile and mutual reception, suggesting that breakdowns will happen faster in order for new, more sustainable structures to emerge. Yes, that may mean we don’t get everything we want for Christmas. But, as the old Rolling Stones song goes, we may get what we need.

Wishing you all much love, courage, and peace in your hearts,
Aquarius, the sign of astrologyPat

Weekly Forecast February 20: New Moon in Pisces

© Dan Collier for Dreamstime.com

Twice this past week, I worked so late in the editing room that I missed the last bus home. That meant walking a mile up a steep hill at midnight, in the rain, dragging a pack full of books.

As I struggled to put one foot in front of the other and keep going, it occurred to me that this was a good image for the astrological period we’re moving through, which won’t end until Mars returns direct on April 13. Saturn will still be retrograde, which will have its own set of issues, but at least we won’t feel so dragged down, demoralized, and obstructed.

That said, it does appear that some good is coming out of the combined retrogrades of Mars and Saturn, with the latter in the relationship-oriented sign of Libra. Saturn turned retrograde two weeks ago and has been sitting at 29 degrees Libra, where he’ll remain until March 4. By the time an outer planet has reached the last degree of a sign, we’re ready to move on to the next lesson. But there’s still something we have to learn about commitment in relationships and maintaining inner balance while interacting closely with others.

Conflict is a natural part of any relationship, but Libra seeks to avoid it in an attempt to “keep the peace.” Under retrograde Mars, with the help of Venus in Mars-ruled Aries, conflicts are being provoked that ultimately will help restore the balance in circumstances that have been out of equilibrium for too long, often due to those attempts at keeping the peace. If you’ve been embroiled in conflict for the past week or two, take heart. Events are unfolding to help you move past it and find higher ground. But you will have to do a lot of heavy lifting. You can’t expect that the other person will make all the concessions. At the same time, you can’t be the one who caves and gives up everything just to avoid more conflict. In fact, you’ll just be deferring it.

The other conflict-averse sign of the zodiac is Pisces, but for different reasons. Whereas Libra strives for harmony and balance, Pisces seeks oneness through dissolution of boundaries. However, confusion can be the result, as Pisces is a psychic sponge for everyone else’s thoughts and feelings. As a result, she may not have a strong sense of self, and she needs time to figure out what she really thinks and how she feels. That makes it hard to stand up for herself in a conflict, so she tends to avoid it. (Please remember than when I talk about the signs, I’m referring not only to the Sun sign, but anyone with that particular energy dominant in their chart. It may be your Moon or Rising sign, or a stellium of planets in a particular house or sign. The only way to know for sure which energies are dominant in your chart is to consult with a professional astrologer.)

So, that’s the heavy news for this week. The good news is that we have a lovely Pisces Moon on Tuesday conjunct Neptune and Chiron and sextile Jupiter. Neptune is the modern ruler of Pisces, traditionally ruled by Jupiter. So it’s significant that this New Moon aspects both planets. This is the first time in hundreds of years, by the way, that we’ve had a New Moon in Pisces conjunct Neptune. The last time it happened, Neptune hadn’t even been discovered.

Chart for New Moon in Pisces

Click on image to enlarge

Neptune rules sleep, dreams, the deep psyche, the collective unconscious, past-life memories. There is magic here, and yet there are pitfalls. We’re in an area where lines are blurred, and we can be tricked into thinking we see something that’s not there. Dreams become illusions or delusions. This is where Truth is a moving target.

Pisces also is the sign of empathy and compassion. With the New Moon conjunct Chiron, the wounded healer, we can have greater compassion for our own wounds and, thus, for those of others. Only when we accept our own flaws and weaknesses can we accept them in others and make a heart-centered connection.

Before leaving Pisces on Thursday, the Moon conjoins Mercury as the latter is about to oppose Mars. This is likely to be a difficult day, but there may be room for the kind of dialogue I described above. Just be advised that it could be painful. Getting through it may require struggling to put one foot in front of the other, in the dark, until you get to the top of the hill.

Saturday’s Sun-Jupiter sextile is much happier. Blow off steam from a tough week by going out to a special breakfast with friends and family. Or, you may just want to sleep in and have coffee in bed.

Speaking of bed, I’ll repeat last week’s recommendation to keep a dream journal with you. I’m hearing many reports of vivid, weird, and otherwise unusual dreams. Write them down now so that you can decode them later.

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

Weekly Forecast February 13: Sun and Mercury Enter Pisces

Walking into the land of Pisces. © Petar Neychev for Dreamstime.com

Well, so much for returning to some semblance of sanity.

Due to my heavy academic schedule, I’ve had to cut way back on consultations and reports, and I don’t have a lot of time for the weekly forecasts, either. Talk about Mars retrograde in the tenth house! Rushed to write last week’s forecast, I overlooked all of the inconjuncts – Thursday’s inconjunct from Mercury to retrograde Mars was especially jarring – all happening as Saturn was stationed retrograde. That explains a lot, and it also gives me hope that the wildly fluctuating energies of the past couple of weeks will even out this week, helping us regain some order in our lives. It sure would be nice to go an entire week without another computer crash!

We also make a big shift from Aquarius to Pisces this week. Aquarian energy is like an unstable electrical current, while Pisces is more like the constant motion of the sea. On Monday, Mercury enters Pisces, followed by the Sun on Sunday. Neptune, Chiron, and Pallas already are in the early degrees of the Fishes, so by this time next week, we should all be feeling a lot more Zen.

Before moving into Pisces, Mercury makes a trine to Saturn. With both planets in intellectual air signs, tasks that require concentration and heavy thinking should go well. I have a couple of projects on my plate that fit that description and will appreciate all the help I can get! I recommend taking advantage of this aspect first thing Monday morning, because the vibe will be gone once Mercury changes signs on Monday evening.

With Mercury in Pisces, we’ll have access to the collective conscious and everything beyond. Deep insights are possible; the difficulty is in trying to explain it to anyone. Words fail. Do keep a journal and pen by your bed to record your dreams. I expect that some of us will have some real whoppers Monday night and into the wee hours of Tuesday. If that happens for you, please leave a comment and tell us about it.

On Tuesday, Jupiter in Taurus sextiles Chiron in Pisces, with the Moon in Jupiter’s sign of Sagittarius. Healing can take place, and it can happen big. In some cases, we stay wounded and stuck due to our beliefs about ourselves. The key to healing old wounds – be they physical or emotional, from this life or another incarnation – is not in trying to fix them or make them go away, but in accepting them as a unique part of who we are. The root word of “heal” is to make whole, and it’s Jupiter’s nature to expand the scope of our understanding so that what we have thought of as disparate parts or even polar opposites become parts of a greater whole.

Sometimes, all we need to see the bigger picture is one important detail that has been missing. We can find it when Mercury conjoins Chiron and sextiles Jupiter within a couple of hours on Thursday.

Meanwhile, Venus squares Pluto on Wednesday, one of the not-so-nice aspects of the week. I read this aspect in a couple of different ways. The conventional approach is that Venus in Aries can be selfish and impulsive, while Pluto in Capricorn demands that everyone toe the corporate line. So, for example, if you’re in the middle of a key project at work, don’t even think about asking for a day off because your best friend from high school blew into town unexpectedly and you want to spend the day together. Friday’s Capricorn Moon keeps this dynamic alive through the end of the week. Do your best to keep your nose to the grindstone.

However, I see another possibility here (at least one; I’m sure there are many others). Ceres, planet of environmental consciousness and embodiment of Mother Earth, is also in Aries and makes an exact square with Pluto on Tuesday. That means Venus and Ceres are in close conjunction when they square the symbol of corporate authority. Watch the news headlines for stories of women of all ages standing up to multinational interests backed by governments and military might. Or, it may be Earth herself who fights back in some way. Ceres and Pluto go back a long way. In mythology, she’s his mother-in-law and one of the few characters he knows better than to talk back to. If you’ll recall, Ceres and Pluto were closely conjunct in the chart for the BP Horizon explosion. Regardless of how much power they have, corporations are still bound by the laws of nature.

The Sun enters Pisces on Sunday and immediately conjoins Neptune. Finally we should be able to get some quality downtime. Stay home and watch your favorite film. Why not several, back-to-back? Meditation would be a good activity, too. Schedule a retreat if you can. If nothing else, go down for a delicious afternoon nap. Once again, keep that dream journal handy. Dreams take on significance now, and it’s time to make them come true.

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